Monday, November 5, 2012

Preparing for a storm of my own - quilt blocks for Sandy

We live 7/10th of a mile off the main road, so when it is cold or dark in the mornings, I drive my kids to the school bus stop.  I was unprepared to see frost on my windows today, so, of course, I had to scrape the windows of the car, and we were late and missed the bus.  My bad.  But it is nice to spend the extra time with my kids in the morning every once in a while during the drive to school.  This morning, during a commercial when the news anchor was talking about how cold it got up north overnight and how blankets were handed out Hurricane Sandy victims, I started thinking about this quilt making project again, planning my days so I have time to quilt, quilt, quilt.  But my 7-year-old son's voice pierced through my thoughts and grabbed hold of my heart.

"Mom," he said, "I want to donate my allowance to the people who lost their homes in Hurricane Sandy.  I mean, they lost their HOME, they lost EVERYTHING!"

I couldn't speak for a moment because my throat closed up with tears.  First, because my children are some of the most beautiful, sensitive, imaginative, compassionate people I know.  Every day that we spend together makes me a better person, as I push myself to do my best to deserve the love of such wonderful little people.

But I was also unable to speak because I was offering up a desperate little prayer that he go on thinking that losing your home and your belongings is the absolute worst thing that can happen.  Please God, let him go on unaware of how much worse it would be to lose a loved one.  Please let him not know how much worse it would be to lose hope.

I spent quite a bit of time this weekend responding to offers to help with this project - I am so heartened by the outpouring of support from all over the world!  No matter how much bad there may be in the world, you will never convince me that there isn't much more GOOD out there!

I worked on my disappearing 4-patch blocks, but came up short on my goal of making 24 - I only made it to 17.

First of all, I had to work until 9 PM on Friday night and then again on Saturday until 1 PM.  Plus, I spent most of the weekend with an upset stomach. (NEVER AGAIN will I try the quick soak method of preparing a 15-bean soup; if I don't soak the beans overnight, I'm just not making them.  Enough said.)  I also had a birthday party to go to on Sunday, and wouldn't you know it, I got the time wrong, so we showed up 2 hours early!  Ugh!  Back home we went (half an hour each way!), and then went again at the correct time.

Then, in anticipation of all the blocks I expect to start pouring in, I tidied up a bit in my sewing room, getting some other projects out of the way.  I made my November Let's Bee Together block for Linda:

and I finished quilting my Orange Creamsicle quilt made from upcycled sheets and pillowcases.
The front - the orange was a sheet, the white floral was a pillowcase, both purchased at a thrift store 
The back - was a sheet purchased at a thrift store 
Close up of hand quilting - this is the first time I've marked a motif in a border 
I couldn't make the border fit exactly on the short sides, so I added a butterfly to the middle of each end side 
Nice "crinkle-age" after being washed and dried 
I always see cool photos of binding on edges of folded quilts - why isn't my photo cool like that? 
So, I'm ready for the storm of quilt blocks for Hurricane Sandy relief.  Bring 'em on!  I can't wait to get started making these blocks into quilts.  HUGE thanks to all of you for taking my little idea and running with it!