Above, the very same yarn bag you saw Cookie tucked into in today’s Daily Photo, and even some of the same yarn!
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The Ball of Purple Yarn
Lucy was six months old when Stanley was in his last few months, and I decided to pull out my yarns so that I’d have something to keep my hands busy in the time I sat with Stanley during his last weeks. The first time Lucy met “yarn”, I thought by her reaction—big round eyes, puffed tail, stiff legs, big interest—perhaps there was a squirrel hidden in the box (it had been in the attic).
Apparently Lucy had a special love for yarn that she had for no other toy ever, and really did go digging in my yarn bag and pull out the purple yarn from all the other colors, and played with it. I took it away from her, knowing yarn can be very dangerous, even fatal, to cats if they eat it. I kept my yarn bag buckled and actually put that ball of purple yarn in a box and folded the flaps shut so they wouldn’t be able to open.
But I returned home one afternoon to find purple yarn rolled out all over the house—I mean all over from the basement through the first floor, up the steps, even over my bed and into the bathroom, the whole ball was unrolled, and Lucy was sitting in the middle of the first floor looking very excited.
“I chased and chased and chased it until it went away!”
These will be illustrations for the book I’ve written about Lucy. Of course, it also taught me another lesson about kittens that I’d forgotten—never doubt the ingenuity of a developing mind! Just like children, they’ll figure out how to get something they want, and they may not always make the best decisions. Because she loved the ball so much, I rolled it up and stitched it so the yarn couldn’t unravel, except for a long tail with I crocheted into a chain stitch, much safer to play with, and she loved it just as much.
And just a few notes on this illustration—I really need to change some of the colors–too much yellow! I had also drawn in her slightly open mouth in the original sketch, but painted over it for this color sketch. These illustrations are by no means done, but they are my process for finding my palette and style, the text, and all the details of Lucy that I’d sketched out three years ago. It’s starting to come together in my mind, but not yet on paper!
Below is what I envision to be the cover of the book—Lucy with her beloved ball of purple yarn! And I still have that ball of yarn, carefully tucked into a corner of that crochet bag.
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