The blanket she couldn’t make

I’m making another baby blanket. Like most of the baby blankets I make, this one came about in the usual way. Someone I know is about to have or has had a baby. This particular someone, Jyrl, is a lovely young woman and is the daughter of my very good friend, Scott. Jryl and my daughter played when they were younger. Scott introduced me to my husband David. David and I had been regular Saturday visitors at Scott’s house where we played a role playing game along with several other friends, among them, my bestie Wendy.

Scott’s wife, Jackie, was sometimes there, sometimes at work, and sometimes just off doing the things that working mothers do on Saturdays. I didn’t know Jackie really well, but she was a really nice and talented woman. She sewed and crocheted and one day, either noticed me making one of my standard granny square baby blankets or just happened to be making one of her own. Hers was slightly different and she showed me the pattern. I think it was her standard go-to baby blanket, much like my standard granny square was mine. Her blanket had the same shell stitch but was worked corner to corner instead of from the inside out like mine. I found it interesting and then promptly forgot about it.

Jackie passed away from cancer many years ago. She had time to prepare and left behind things for her children. I don’t know and haven’t asked if she made baby things for future grandchildren. I’m not sure I have it in me to ask. I heard Jyrl had had a baby and off to the stash I went looking for baby boy yarn. Inexplicably, I didn’t have any that I thought suitable. I had baby yarn, I regularly stock the stuff, but the colors were too girly. Off to the craft store I went to select some boyish colors. I had in my head that I wanted a decent turquoise and a white.  In the middle of the baby aisle, the memory of Jackie showing me this blanket hit me. It hit me kinda hard. What if she were here? What kind of blanket would she make for her daughter? Maybe by now she would make something else, something super fancy, I don’t know but somehow I just knew that I had to make this blanket in the way she showed me all those years ago.  So, I came home with some blues and white and got to work.

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I liked the colors, but it  just wasn’t working for me, so back to the store I went for more yarn. I think it may have been that I wasn’t using ‘baby’ colored yarn and I really didn’t like the thought of weaving in so many ends. Being plagued by self-doubts on whether what I was doing was suitable or not, appropriate or not, corny or not, wasn’t helping. I chose another yarn.

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This is more like what I wanted. Maybe the other women in her family will have done this for and I’m just being silly, but it’s nice to think that Jackie was there, telling me what she wanted. I don’t know if I’m going to be brave enough to tell Jyrl why I chose this particular pattern, but in my head THIS is the blanket that her mother couldn’t make.

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I’ve reached the half-way mark and have started the decreases. It is, as they say, all downhill from here.

This youtube video is the pattern that Jackie showed me, as near as I can remember. The yarn is a newish yarn that I found at JoAnns that had the standard baby colors that I wanted and remembered but was also in a worsted weight so the blanket would go along faster.