Every so often I have coffee with my 91-year-old aunt. We both enjoy it, and I often end up learning things about family history that I never knew.
My grandfather knit. As in two (or more) needles, lots of yarn, mittens, scarves or sweaters at the end of the process, knit. It always seemed a bit odd to see my ex-Italian navy, world war I vet grandfather with a pair of knitting needles in his hands, but callow youth that I was, I never thought to ask how/when/why he learned the craft.
According to my aunt, he was laid off during the Great Depression, like a lot of other folks. Having him hanging around at home drove my grandmother a little crazy, so she taught him to knit to get him out of her hair and give him something to do.
Makes sense to me.
Apparently, he liked it enough that he kept it up, off and on. When I was in grade school, I wore a winter scarf he knit. While yarn arts are not my thing (I crochet fairly well, and can knit/purl straight rows if pushed), you can see that my craftiness comes from both grandparents on that side.
Then there are the more recent bits of family life that may become stories to pass through the ages. As we were getting up from the table to leave, my aunt mentioned that she had recently crocheted three p*ssy hats for my cousin's wife for "a big national event". They were "really easy to make, and they had to be red, you know."
My aunt is a dear, sweet woman and I am 100% sure she had no real idea exactly what she had done.
My cousin's wife, however, is going to get a talking to the next time I see her.