So far this year, each one of my WIPocalypse posts have featured a finish, which is pretty fantastic. First it was Margaret Cottam, then last month it was the bonus block from Anniversaries of the Heart and this month it’s another Anniversaries of the Heart block. I’m a little overdue for my WIPocalypse post this month, but I wanted to wait because I was so close to having another little finish – and this one is important.
You may remember that I decided to go ahead and start the June block instead of moving on to the March block next because I wanted my dad to be able to see it finished? The June block is actually called “Happy Birthday” and I made a some changes to it. I wanted this block to represent both my dad and his mother – they both have June birthdays only two days apart. I decided to put each of their names on the block, over one, instead of initials as charted. I also changed the color on the names so that they were a bit easier to read. And then instead of splitting up the year on either side of the house, I stitched the year each of them was born over one as well.
So, on the left side of the block – it says Margaret and the year 1915. This is my dad’s mother.
She died long before I was born. In fact, I think my mother only met her once before she died of cancer in 1965. The photo above is from 1937. She must have been an amazing woman, and to hear my dad talk about her, she was. He sent me an email once with the subject line “My mom is braver than your mom” and the photo below attached.
She must have been something. (Although to be fair, there just isn’t any photographic evidence of my mom being chased by a wild bison.)
The right side of the block has my dad’s name, John, and the year he was born – 1944. As soon as I saw this block I knew I wanted to change the wording inside the cartouche from “Happy Birthday Dear Friend” to something more meaningful.
My dad told me once that he and his mom would celebrate their birthdays together – she would make a big cake for the bottom layer and a smaller cake for the top layer. One for each of them. And she would whisper to him “two cakes in one” because it was their little secret. Here’s my dad in 1948 with his mother’s carving knife and their cakes.
And here’s my dad in the Air Force.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get my dad’s block finished in time for him to see it. He died on February 24th. I did my best, but I just wasn’t fast enough. But, I’m glad it’s finished and I took it to show my mom yesterday and she told me he would have loved it. I think it’s a good remembrance of him and his mom even if those lazy daisy stitches seemed neverending!
And speaking of the lazy daisies, on the morning of the day he died, I noticed my mom’s neighbor’s trees were all in bloom so I took my mom out to show them to her.
Coincidentally, the block has little pink trees on either side. So, it will always remind me of that little moment of beauty and the peace of that morning.
I miss you.
I am grateful for a legacy.