~MY GRANDMOTHER'S CLOCHE~
About Age 8
Not long after I penned my first blog post I shared a little story about my paternal grandmother, Bethel Maude. Of all the things I've ever written it's a personal favorite. It's been close to three years now since I wrote about my feelings for the woman my father simply called Mother. She passed away when I was not quite a teenager and even though she was only seventy-two when she died she truly seemed ancient to me at the time.
~THE ENTIRE PHOTOGRAPH~
With Her Sisters
I've been really busy these past two weeks working in my studio and when I'm task oriented my mind rarely wonders about. Too focused on what I'm creating to think much about anything else, I suppose. But this week my grandmother came to me more times than I can say... Although I have only a handful of memories of her we have even less photographs. A few pictures taken when she was young and only one or two as she grew older. I made a mental note to track the photos down, but in the meantime she continually returned to my mind.
~WEARING HER CLOCHE HAT~
2nd on the right - About Age 15
The more I worked the more overwhelmed I grew. Seriously...I couldn't shake the thought of her and it was getting to the point I was feeling frustrated. I was working on a pink rose cupcake design that included a pedestal cake plate with a glass cloche and I absolutely couldn't concentrate. Since cloches of all kinds remain crazy-popular I've wanted to incorporate one into some new altered art paper goods for a while now... So why then did my grandmother keep coming back to my mind again and again...
~ON THE LEFT - CLOCHE HAT AGAIN~
About Age 17
Finally, late this afternoon I decided to hunt down the only pictures I have... I found them tucked away in a drawer with other special things that belonged to my father. As I picked up the century old photographs I knew instantly why my grandmother's presence was all about me and I felt a bit ashamed for pushing her aside. No doubt working on the cloche card design caused me to visit days of long ago. I had forgotten how my grandmother loved hats as an older woman, but when she was a young girl and a teenager she was rarely seen without a cloche... In all the photographs I personally own only the one below, taken around the time she married my grandfather, is she seen without one.
~MARRYING MY GRANDFATHER~
About Age 18
What I wouldn't give to sit down with a cup of tea and share the day with the grandmother who left my earthly presence far too soon. I would most certainly yap the hours away telling her all about my life, my children, my Miss K, and my beloved. I'd tell her how much I love to create and take her all around my home and show her where I work, live and love...and then I would invite her to come live with me.
~IN MY CABINET~
I would hope to pamper and treat her in a way I know for certain she was never was. I would take her to lunch and we'd dine on a fine meal. Then we'd visit a demure ladies boutique where I would purchase her a fine felt cloche (and one for me, too). I would photograph her in style and make sure at least one picture was taken with me. I'd squeeze her hand, tell her she looked beautiful and how much I loved spending time with her. When the evening hours settled in and all grew quite inside my La Chaumière I would snuggle up next to her and listen, really listen as she opened up her heart. I'd ask her to tell me about her deep, lasting faith, her childhood hopes and dreams, her loves, her passions, her joys, fears, my father as a child and all about the life she had lived....
And the one she'd longed to...
Blessings as you get real with the ones you love~
Love to you...