Let’s take a trip back in time. The year is 1995. TLC’s “Waterfalls,” “Mariah Carey’s “Fantasty,” Madonna’s “Take a Bow,” “Montell Jordan’s “This is How We Do It” (come on, you know you loved it!), and Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men’s “One Sweet Day” (very poignantly, but unintentionally released just 3 weeks after the horrific Cary-Grove bus crash in my town) topped the charts.
You could find my high school self sporting chokers, flannels (um, this never went away, as I writing this while wearing one), Steve maddens, scrunchies, a leather jacket, baby doll dresses or short skirts with thigh highs, and round sun glasses. And I saw all of the top three grossing movies “Die Hard With A Vengence,” “Toy Story (first pixar ever!),” and “Apollo 13” in the theater.
Now that you are snuggled in closely with the mid 1990’s, I can share where my story begins.
My aunt was in town from Georgia, and I just loved everything about her. Her southern drawl (even though none of the rest of our family has this accent), her sweet smell, her interest in my teenage life, and her general sense of “coolness.” On one particular day of her visit, Aunt Shelia picked up the yarn from my mom’s current crocheting project and asked me if I wanted to learn how. Like a true teenager, I said yes! Despite many pleas from my own mother to learn.
I felt so special with my aunt nestled close to my side while she showed me how to wrap the yarn through my left fingers while holding the needle in my right. It was easy enough, just a single crochet. But I was mesmerized. Before long I had a couple of rows, and I couldn’t believe I had created something!
We ventured out to Frank’s Nursery and Crafts (one of my favorite stores EVER as a kid and teen. Just thinking about it bow is giving me super happy nostalgic feels) to buy yarn for my very first blanket. After eyeing skeins and skeins of every color imaginable, I chose a creamy pink for the bulk of the blanket and white for borders on each end.
We got home, and I went straight to work. Push through, turn, grab, pull through. Push through, turn, grab, pull through. On and on I went. By the time my aunt returned home, I had finished the entire white bottom. I was on a role! I’d be done in no time!
Let’s take a trip back in time. The year is 2005. I was seeing Star Wars Episode 8 and The Chronicles of Narnia in the theater. I was listening to “Hollaback Girl” by Gwen Stefani, “Since You been Gone,” by Kelly Clarkson, and “You and Me,” by Lifehouse….which ended up being in MY WEDDING VIDEO. Because yes, 2005 was the year I got married. And you guessed it, the blanket is not finished. I start joking about how, perhaps, it will be a baby blanket for my first child. And by now I have grown tired of the giant swatch of pink that this blanket has become, so I change it up a bit and get a blue, pink, and white ombre skein. Only further pushing the baby blanket idea. I’ve got a lot to do the year I am getting married, but I’m 1/3 of the way through the blanket. I’ll be done in no time!
Let’s take a trip back in time to…2020. This is going to be a great year! Nothing weird or world ending is going to happen! For some reason I can’t recall any movies or music that came out…hmmm…it’s like the world stopped…but it must just be me. But I’m fairly certain the main fashion craze was pajamas. Anyway, I’m going to work on my blanket again! By now, it may have to be a baby blanket for one of my two CHILDREN’s children, since they are now 10 and 7. Oops, oh well.
Then, wouldn’t you know it, somehow 2020 turned out to be kind of stressful. Weird. So despite having lots of time at home, it fell by the wayside into a poor, tired puddle in the back corner of the family room, collecting dust once more. Until one day, when my 7 year old daughter saw it and said, “Mommy, why don’t you finish it?” I told her I might just give up on it. I don’t even like the colors anymore. It’s not the best/softest yarn. And I’d rather just start something fresh. “But I love it! I would use it!” And that’s when I decided, I had to finish the darn thing. Even if it took 25 years since I first laid fingers on it.
It was meant to be a Christmas present, but with not being able to work on it while she was awake, that made that idea very difficult. But I finished as much as I could and wrapped it in a box. When she opened it, tears came to her eyes, and she said “Awwww….mommy…you didn’t have to do that.” And I cried. It was worth the crazy amount of work I had put into it the last couple months. Literally working on 2/3 of it in the last 2 months, when it took me 25 years to do the first 1/3!!
Unfortunately…it’s still not finished though. It hit a literal snag and parts of it and my sanity began to unravel. I got some of it fixed by a friend and began again. More unraveled, and I attempted to fix it myself. This thing is no longer the masterpiece I had hoped for. It’s got spots that have been stitched over and over to try to get it to stay together. It’s wider in the beginning than towards the ending because of learning how to finish the rows better. And accidentally switching to a smaller needle halfway through. But gosh darnit, I’m going to finish it! It will most certainly be filled with lots of love. Swears and tears too, but lots of love.
I’m really hoping lucky number year 26 is the magic year. It will be pretty amazing when this finally becomes the blanket my daughter and I read under every night. Even if it is when she is 18 😉