Thursday, May 5, 2011

Annay's Love

Last Monday we lost a very special member of our family, my husband's sweet grandmother, whom my little one affectionately called Annay (got this from the other great grandkids - I think it maybe came from a mispronunciation of "Nana" when one of the kids was little).  I can't think of the "right" words to describe Annay, but I know that she was an incredibly strong woman and was the glue that held my husband's family together.  She would do anything for anyone, and could cook like nobody's business.  I think everyone thinks that all grandmothers can cook, but I promise you she was different.  She never really could describe to you how to make anything because she'd often make it up as she goes, or she'd use vague measurements such as a "little of this" and a "little of that".  She was known all over the mountain (her neighborhood and where my husband's family all grew up) for her famous banana pudding.  Aside from cooking, she had many other gifts (more on that in a minute), most notably her generosity and thoughtfulness.  As I said, she would help anyone out with anything she could, no questions asked.  She was one of the sweetest ladies I've ever known, and I'm proud to say that I was able to know her for 13 lovely years.

Another incredible talent of Annay's was her craftiness, including marvelous sewing and crocheting.  Even into the last few months of her life she was actively crocheting prayer shawls for people in need at our church.  If she thought someone could benefit from one, she'd start on it immediately.  She was also an amazing seamstress.  This was something that Annay and I could really talk about in the last few years since I've really picked up sewing.  She'd always ask if I made EG's outfit she had on, and I'd secretly hope that she wouldn't look too close!  Haha!  Knowing how wonderful she was with the sewing machine, I just knew she'd find 1,000 mistakes in each piece of clothing I made.  Of course, I worried for nothing because she was never anything but kind and complimentary of everything I made.  And, if I hadn't made something that EG was wearing, she'd always tell me, "well, you could make it".  In the last few weeks before she passed she would always remind me that she had tons of sewing stuff that "no one else was going to use" and that she had started a quilt for EG that I needed to find in her sewing room and finish.  Well, I found out just how much she was talking about when we started to go through it the other day.  Wow.  I found the quilt that she started (and all but bound) for EG, and I am in awe.  When I showed the quilt to EG and told her the story behind it she hugged it tightly, looked up, and said "thank you sweet Annay".  Her little cousin was with us and said, "that's not Annay" (talking about me), and EG replied, "Not Mommy...Annay's up in the sky, but she can hear me.  Thank you."  It nearly brought me to tears.  Here is the quilt and, yes, it is all hand quilted...

Aside from the gorgeous quilt, after going through all kinds of fabric I ended up bringing home probably 20 yards, plus a few other odds and ends (PLEATER!, lace, ribbon, thread, etc.).  I've decided to do a little series of sewing tutorials/posts using nothing but Annay's gifts to me.  Pictured below is a small sampling of the things that I was able to take to use.  What an awesome gift.  I know that she would be beyond thrilled for me to actually use these items to make beautiful things.  I just hope that my sewing projects would make her proud :)

My EG, and everyone else, just adored her.  And, EG says she understands that Annay is in Heaven with Jesus, and EG talks to her frequently.  She says she knows that Annay can hear her.  It's so sweet :)  We will all miss Annay a ton, but I am confident that she is in a better place, that she was prepared to leave us, and that we will see her again.  I'm so glad to have had her in my life :)  All who knew her were definitely better for it.

I couldn't resist sewing with some of her lovely fabric when I was home on Wednesday.  Here's a little sneak peek of what I made for the first installment of "Annay's Love"...tutorial to come this weekend :)


  1. aww cant wait to see what it is....

  2. What a beautiful tribute from a wonderful young lady about a fantastic and "saintly" woman. She knew that you would pass forward the tradition of true "handwork" to others. Love you, Susan