A few years ago I was chosen to participate in a blog hop where we were challenged to make a piece of jewelry from a metal book component. I knew instantly what I would do if I were chosen.
My grandfather was a WWII vet, where he served in the U.S. Army. I absolutely adored my papaw. As far as I was concerned, he was perfect (although my grandmother was quick to point out he did have flaws), and he thought I was pretty perfect, too. I always felt his love for me was unconditional, and no matter what I did or how many mistakes I made I knew i would still be his favorite. He was one of the finest Christian men I’ve ever known, and he was warm, compassionate, and funny. Papaw thought I was the most intelligent kid ever, and he was so proud of the fact that I was the first in the family to go to college.
In the fall of 1995, my grandfather passed away after a battle with cancer. I was a senior in college, and he didn’t get to see me graduate, get married, or have kids. I so wish he had met his great-granddaughters. He would have been crazy about them! After he passed away, one of the things I wanted were the old pictures he had from his time in the army during the war. I always loved those pictures for some reason. Maybe it was the history behind them, maybe because it was a glimpse into part of my papaw’s life he rarely talked about. I wish now I had asked more questions. He was so proud of serving in the army, and when he did talk about the war, it was mainly about how beautiful Germany was.
I decided to make the book for my necklace into a kind-of scrapbook. I copied some of the pictures and resized them to fit the book. I also added bits of scrapbook paper with writing imprinted on it to mimic old letters that would have been sent to and from the soldiers and their families.
I embellished the front of the book with a key charm that I glued on, and added a chain made from various beads and pearls. This is probably one of my favorite pieces I’ve made, simply because of the meaning behind it. It’s nice to be able to look inside it while I’m wearing it and see a picture of my young grandfather, so handsome in his uniform.
I think about my papaw every day and still miss him after all these years. I’m very thankful for the years we had together and the wonderful memories I have of him!