Artful Living

sampler of love

PvE childhood embroidery sample.
I found this embroidery while organizing a drawer.  I had made this for my Grandmother when I was a little girl which she had proudly displayed in her kitchen.  She lived in a simple home with a lovely property full of fruit trees in the back behind the garage.  I remember running through it with my sisters and brothers.  I remember those metal chairs on the lawn and her Sunday Suppers.  My Grandmother had nine children and she loved to serve them and the Lord.  

Grandma, “corn lady” at work in her 90’s!
She worked up until she was in her 90’s standing on her feet all day long at my Dad’s Fruit market. The customers loved her.   She wore hand-made dresses with aprons and lace up heeled Grandma shoes and her hair was always up. She would wait in her ever so pale green kitchen for me to come and drive her to work.  The designated driver had to have her at work by eight am and not a minute late.  I would arrive and see her sitting at the window ready.  She loved to work and to serve.  My eldest brother was the manager and she loved working for him. She always said he reminded her of her late husband John. (My Grandpa)

 cherished letter written to me, on steno from my Grandmother 1987

On my wedding day – my husband and I visited her in the hospital because she had fallen and hurt her hip.  My brother Paul drove us in a “Rolls-Royce” that a customer wanted us to borrow for the day.  When we arrived, my Grandmother only had eyes for my brother.  I called my Mother from the honey-moon in Europe and said,”Grandma did not even look at me, did she even see me?”  My Mother replied, “Oh yes, she did, she thought your dress needed some lace.”  I invite you to return on friday as I plan to show you my wedding dress.
Sunday Suppers were at Grandma’s home, heaping bowls of comfort foods.  Bowls full of fried chicken, lima beans, mashed potatoes and fresh butter and rolls.  She also made this orange Jello with grated carrots that was my favorite.  Cooking all day and never even sitting to taste, she would just keep filling up the bowls and serving us samples of her love.  Her favorite was making Angel Food Cake for us and cookies, black walnut cookies.
Now, I am a mother and an artist and this sampler holds a special memory for me.  I am now serving my family and my friends with my art and often my cooking too.  What a blessing to have a Grandmother to instill the value of hard work, all stemming from doing what you love.
Sometimes we have to sample things to find out what we really love.  What is your “sampler of love?”