I was 12 when this photo was taken. My brother, in worn out denim with dirt stains, was 16. His loyal Plott hound, Shadow was 4 (according to my mother’s handwriting on the back of the photo).
Their relationship was a made-for-tv-movie about a boy and his dog.
The blanket in this photo had already seen so much use by this time – I don’t even know exactly when he got it. It was faded, dingy, stained, and pilled…. and it was loved.
My grandmother made that blanket for my brother. She had made me a quilt – but that’s another story for another time. This blanket was Navajo looking. It had fringe on it… it was relatively masculine, but most importantly, my brother L-O-V-E-D this blanket.
You know there are some people who are not “craft worthy” when it comes to giving gifts? My grandmother knew that if she made my brother something, he would love it – he was craft-worthy to her. Those two had a connection unlike any other. My brother was someone my grandmother really connected to beyond the obligatory family relationship. They laughed together, had inside jokes together, could sit and talk for hours.
A few months ago I was browsing around vintage patterns and I found “the” blanket. I had not thought of the striped Navajo blanket .. heck, ever. It was just a piece in my past but when I saw the picture on the pattern, I had so many memories flood back to me – You have heard about smells triggering memories; just the right perfume can take you back to thoughts of your favorite teacher or warm baking cookies link to memories of your grandmother. This blanket was some sort of portal to a surprisingly large amount of memories – one cascading into the next, turning into a story telling session about Shadow and my brother, my cat Clyde…. It was pretty intense and even looking at that photo now, I have tears in my eyes.
I bookmarked the pattern on Ravelry, not sure what my real intention was. Should I recreate the blanket my grandmother made for my brother when he was probably 12 or so… or just take it as a reminder to so many good memories of my childhood?
I made the bold decision to re-create it for a Christmas or birthday present, whichever it is done by. I have been working on it as much as possible and it is growing slowly. I do think he will really like it and appreciate it. I am hoping he won’t take it negatively in my trying to replace what grandma had done for him – I doubt he will.
The oddest thing for me is holding a memory in my hand – but its a good odd.
Definitely a good odd.