It has been a long road to completion. My memoirs titled Becoming American, Memoirs of an Immigrant Childhood have been proofread, edited and formatted. Photos have been embedded and the cover has been designed. Sweet Guy and I finally took the thumb drive to the printer. We had a bit of rude awakening when we requested 10 copies in color and were told it would cost $994. A bit of backpedaling and we made some concessions: no more color and we decided to print the covers ourselves. We will end up with enough copies for each child and grandchild and both my sisters.
This project began in 2010. By that time, I had encouraged each of my parents to dictate or write down their memories of growing up in Germany and then becoming adolescents during World War II. We had printed enough copies of each memoir to share with the whole family. My intention was to establish a family archives that would contain some treasured items that were symbolic of the family history and the memoirs of the women going forward in time. To my regret, I did not have a history of my grandparents or great-grandparents lives.
While the historical record of a particular generation in time can be very interesting to historians, the day-to-day life of a woman in a family can be even more so for the children that come after her. Her unique perspective and her struggle to fit into her society tell a story to which no history book can do justice. We are all greatly effected by the women who raised us and those who danced on the periphery of our lives.
My own story is about a little girl who boarded an ocean liner and journeyed to a country across the sea. Her trials and triumphs speak about the culture and the times of the 1950′s through the early 1970′s. When writing an autobiography it is very difficult to decide what to include and what to omit. My account runs on for 187 pages but I could easily have made it twice that long. I hope that I have succeeded in presenting a concise and balanced narrative of my experiences during that period. I hope that my grandchildren will think so too.
Those of you who missed my last post may not know that I started this delightful little owl Thursday. My daughter Lana has developed an affection for these creatures so I began to troll Ravelry looking for the perfect pattern. I loved this one by Cherry Berry Crochet because it has the crocodile stitch “feathers”.
When you are making Amigurumi you must use a very small hook and a tight stitch so that the stuffing does not peek out. Since the scrap yarns I was using varied in weight from fingering to worsted, the smallest hook I could manage was D Hook, not the C hook that the pattern required. Of course this made my Baby Owl into a Mama Owl! She stands a good 12 inches tall!
I have to be honest, the dexterity it takes to manipulate a small hook to make tiny little components for the feet and the features almost had me over a barrel. My hands are simply not as limber as they were years ago and I cheated a little on the ears. I simply could not will my muscles to crochet 6 tiny stitches in a circle to make a long tube!
I also notice that the head did not come out as high as it should have. As usual, my row gauge was way off and I didn’t notice the problem until the head was completed. Since I had used a jar as the body, I had wanted the top to fill the head but the head was not big enough. In fact, I had to end up pulling the body up over the jar so that the drawstring at the top would not show beneath the head.
Cherry Berry’s pattern allows you to use the jar for storage but unfortunately I had to dispense with that option on my Owl Mama. So even with the flat head and the empty belly, I think Owl Mama came out very cute. I hope that Lana likes her!
Cherry Berry Crochet posted the cutest pattern on Ravelry a few days ago. The little owl that you see in the photo above doubles as a candy container or toilet paper cover. As you can see, the “feathers” are actually done in crocodile stitch, the very same stitch I learned when I was making the Crocodile Stitch Cardigan!
My daughter Lana recently informed me that she has become very fond of some of the little owls that are being displayed in the shops these days. I have seen owl tree ornaments, owl hats, owl figurines, owl key chains–the list goes on and on. So when Taisija from Cherry Berry Crochet posted her new pattern, I simply had to make it for Lana. If you would like to make this adorable little owl, the pattern is here.
All photos used by permission of Cherry Berry Crochet