Creative Legacy

I have a creative guardian angel. I'm serious. Her name is Mary (Maria on the Ellis Island records) and she was my great-grandmother.

You see, my Slovenian great-grandma Novak passed away when I was 6 months old. She was suffering with cancer and was only able to hold little baby me one time. But apparently once was enough. My mom's pretty sure when she held me, her soul jumped out of her ailing body into mine.

Relatives have told me my whole adult life that I remind them of her. Along with the obvious physical characteristics, we are almost eerily alike in our interests. We were/are both obsessive "makers". Now, I won't even claim that my skills can hold a candle to hers...but I'm working on it!

Sadly, we never got to know each other. I never got to take a piece of her wonderful bread or a bowl of her juha. She was plucked away from me too soon. Luckily, she left behind piles of beautiful lace, knitting, crocheting, sewing, and recipes. From these things I have a pretty good understanding of who she was, because I speak her language. I get it.

For Christmas this year, my mom gave me a quite a treasure. It's a lap blanket crocheted by my great-grandma that was made to grace the back of her couch. It's so warm, sturdy, and beautiful. It's the best gift my mom could have given me. Not to get too woo-woo here, but I it just vibrates with energy from the past.

I consider myself lucky because I not only have the finished object treasures like this blanket, I also have many of her tools. Her tatting pillow, knitting books (with her wonderful notations in Slovenian written in the margins), her rustic wood mortar, etc. Aside from the books, I am loathe to use her things. I sort of view them as sacred some Saint bone that's been proven to heal the blind. I have plans to make a very nice place for them in my future craft room.

This is a subject I've planned to introduce for some time, it's so personal to me so I think I put too much pressure on myself to do it right. I hope I did it justice. There's more about this lady to come.



  1. What a beautiful post about a talented, beautiful lady. Your mother's Christmas gift to you is a wonderful treasure.

    I'm lucky to have known my sweet great auntie who taught me to knit, and since she passed away many decades ago, have been able to knit many items with her own needles that were given to me. I love using these needles, carrying on her spirit with every stitch.

    Please do write more about your great grandmother. xo

    1. Thanks for your sweet words. You will definitely be hearing more about her in the future :)

      I sure hope that our crafty tools will be as appreciated as your Aunts and my Great-Grandma's when we are gone!