Monday, December 29, 2008

Remembering Grandma Mik at Christmas

My mom's mother, Lillian Mikolasek, aka Grandma Mik, was quite the artist and craftsperson. When we spent summers with her and Grandpa in Menominee (Michigan), she was always working on something. She sewed, painted and otherwise created all manner of useful or decorative pieces. She and a group of women in the hospital guild met regularly at the hospital and made little decorative items that were then put on the patient's food trays at holidays. She has left us a wonderful legacy of her work - particularly painted objects. These include wooden bowls, cutting boards, platters, tablecloths, glassware and even clothing. Mom, in her wisdom, has been distributing them to my six siblings and I over the years. Most of those which I have inherited are Christmas holiday pieces. So, I always enjoy some fond memories of Grandma when I get them out this time of year. This Christmas/New Years plate is beautiful.

This little wood tree, made with two pieces of flat wood, suffered quite a bit at the hands (or rather teeth) of Archimedes. He was the golden retriever we had prior to Molly. After he did his handiwork on the tree, Grady took the pieces down to the basement so that he could work on restoring them. Well, quite a few years have passed and we had both forgotten about the little tree. During the recent enforced time at home due to snow, Grady began clearing out the basement, came across the tree pieces and took the first steps of fixing them. More work is to be done, but I was so happy to see even this much repair and to have it out again.

I think we have about a dozen of these glasses. But, a few of them are worn out. No blame to the dog this time, just paint that has rubbed off. I am in the process of looking for an artist/craftsperson who could restore the worn ones and help us preserve the whole set.

And, here is another wooden plate that she painted. So, here's a toast to Grandma Mik! I wish I had a fraction of her talent and creativity.


livinginalocalzone said...

Your Grandma Mik does sound like a such a vibrant, creative person. What good memories she has left you. The tree especially. Even though there is still work to be done, the work itself seems like a tribute to her.

Ann said...

being the lame digital camera person, i made a few more coffee mugs with the santa plate picture and gave to jim, patty and catherine this year.

lame, in that i have no creative talent... i got the sports gene from grandpa mik....

ckw said...

WOW -those are so cool and what a great treat to take out every holiday!
..and to Ann- I have to tell you we ALL have creativity--and sports is a creative deal-plus just having the IDEA to put the pic of a mug is creative-
sorry- not to lecture - just that I like for people to know there are many ways to be creative and we each have our own.
Has been crazy-nuts winter break and too busy--kids and grandkids moved into the "hood" here in Hawthorne and such-but still wanna get with ya sometime-
thanks for the card and thoughts - joan

Joan said...

Yes, I think keeping her pieces in usable shape will be a good ongoing tribute to Grandma Mik. I am also working on repairing the Christmas stocking she made for me which I still use.

Ann certainly did get pretty much all the athletic talent that came through our family genes. But, she also has come up with some pretty good poetry for special occasions as well!