Striking Out

Dianne here….it has been awhile since I have posted on the blog and you may have thought clever Christine was the sole author of the blog, but no, here I am.

It has been a blurry spring for me, in some ways hurried, in some ways sluggish as I adjust to the death of my 95 year old father in February   (leap year day, and as my brother said, does that mean it didn’t happen?). So the days have been mixed with memories, mostly good except the very end, furniture reassignment, financial coordination and adjustment to the fact that my days are not arranged around when I will visit as we were lucky to have him in our town for the past 14 years.

So that’s where I’ve been but that’s not striking out….that happened last weekend when I spent the weekend going to a reunion of 1960/1970 high school classes in my hometown, a smallish town in Northern California Bay Area. I had missed my HS 50 year reunion last October as I had committed to teaching at TIGHR (tri annual  international hooking conference in Victoria, BC) long before the reunion dates were chosen. So I thought this multi year reunion would be a good idea. I spent the weekend with my daughter and a bonus was going to both grandsons’ baseball games. The first was called for rain (yes in CA!) but it had stopped by the second 2pm game (yes in CA, when it rains, it doesn’t rain enough) and the second was the oldest (8 years) and a playoff game, do or die so to speak. The striking out refers to watching my grandson strike out 3 times in the game and how excruciating that was for both of us. It painfully and quickly brought me back (a real deja vu) to the days of watching my son in the batter’s box, striking out and worse than that, unable to contain his tears. He soon realized baseball was not his sport and soccer more to his liking so that was fine, but the short ‘season’ of tears was heart wrenching for me….and there I was again watching my grandson, tho there were no tears on his end. I guess my point here is that we as parents and often as friends, wish we could take the burden away from our loved ones; I would have happily taken the strikeouts rather than watch him suffer….is there a moral to this?

I have posted before about how braiding (hooking and knitting too) are comfort foods to me. Interestingly, that was reinforced in a couple of ways recently. Shortly after my dad’s passing we helped his wife dispose of his clothes and I took 2 scarves of his and immediately stripped them and began braiding! IMG_0917 Almost without thinking, the scarves turned into a small chairpad, not my best but so satisfying to make!  And several weeks ago, a rug hooking friend passed away suddenly and I was gifted a small colorful, non-wool remnant. I immediately began braiding a small mat for a friend who has a garden room and bordered it in pink velvet. I thought so much about both friends as I braided and laced.IMG_0916 In a way it gave some closure as I was out of town during her memorial (and subsequent stash sale).

And lastly, a story about my next big rug….it starts with Christine gifting me with 3 yards of luscious maroon Dorr wool after my dad passed. She said it was better than flowers and I would benefit from the braiding….and when she visited we talked about my making a large (6’6′) quarter pie rug for a corner at our coast vacation rental. I had been given 2 other large pieces of check and tweed and the rug idea was born. Christine did her magic on the computer to come up with a way (we hope) to make the shape in braiding with some hooking which will be perfect for me. I began braiding a 44″ diameter round with a goal of it being done by the time we saw each other (and Kris) at the Valley Forge Braid In to lay out the dimensions and continue braiding to create the pie slice space. The round did its ‘magic’ and I began to focus both on the rug and the grieving and I came out better for both!  I will give you a better idea of the rug and its progress in the next post. Let’s hope IT is not a strike out! Thanks for listening.


4 thoughts on “Striking Out

  1. Sounds good Diane! You are lucky to have had so much time with your Dad. Summer for me is not time to start something new and fishing and gardening keep me so busy! So, tomorrow a bunch of hookers are off to Quadra Island for a long weekend rug hooking and I will hook on something new and design a rug to start in the fall for my Grandson for Christmas! Have a great summer!

  2. Tender thoughts. Glad for you too on the therapy of braiding. One is able to review and express the absence of that person close to us as our hands create a tangible statement in their memory. Thank you for sharing Dianne.

  3. It’s a tough time when someone loses a parent but on top of that a friend. I hope your busy life this summer along with your family and friends, that the pain will diminish and you will be left with pleasant happy memories!!!!!

  4. Diane … Braiding is great therapy. How wonderful that you were able to create lasting pieces to remember your Dad and your friend. Best of luck with the new rug, which we all are sure will be a “home run”!!

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