In all of the excitement of last week, I forgot to post pictures of the wonderful embroidery piece that I discovered over the holiday. I spent lots of time during my travels digging through both my mom's and my mother-in-law's attics. This beauty was hiding amongst boxes and books in Chris' family's house. After consultation with his Oma, we discovered that it was made by Chris' father's step-Grandmother when he was born in Holland in the 40s.
As you can see, this is a sort of a Dutch "Punch and Judy" scene, full of children and activity. I looked up "Jan Klaasen en Katrijn" on google, but only found references to some sort of pupper theater on several Dutch websites. Today, I wish I understood Dutch. Alas.
The piece is quite large - maybe two by three feet - and is cotton embroidery thread worked in a needlepoint stitch on a fabric normally used for cross stitch. It was a bit stained with age, and was stretched in a (not very flattering) frame with carboard backing. We rescued it from the frame and took it home with us for the baby's nursery.
I was quite worried about cleaning it, but Chris' Oma reassured me that she had handwashed it many times before. So I plunged ahead, and most of the brown age spots came out. Now it is drying on our dining room table and getting ready to be hung over the crib - bright enough to add color and interest, but soft enough to not damage baby G's head should she yank it down enthusiastically.
Three generations. My. Isn't it wonderful?