I think I inherited this trait from my mother, who hasn’t sat still yet in her 60-plus years. Growing up in my house, my mom was always doing something – cooking, sewing, stained glass, singing, teaching piano, baking – that is, if she was home. If she wasn’t home, she was teaching piano at somebody else’s house, delivering the cookies, installing a new stained glass window at church, or running the junior choir rehearsal. I’m home a lot more than my mom was, but I still have a hard time sitting. And I really have no idea what the TV is used for other than watching football.
I have fewer hobbies than my mom. Of course, with 2 attention demanding midgets around, there’s little time left for crafts. (I kid, really. Who doesn’t want to play a game of “Mommy, tickle me!” for 4 hours….straight.) But for the last few years I like to quilt. Please don’t confuse this with “I like to sew” – which I do, but when I tell people I like to quilt they always ask me if I sew a lot of clothes for the kids. No. Unless they want to wear blankets to school (which is against the rules, I’m guessing.)
Quilting is a little bit like paint by numbers, and a little bit of shop class. There are patterns – which are much more like guidelines than rules – and you have the freedom to pick what goes where. For me, it is a comfortable balance between structure and freedom that enables creativity. (In my education/day job world we call this scaffolding, but I digress…) If you know me, or are related to me, you probably have something I’ve quilted for you.
I made signature quilts for each of the kids when they were born. All of the doctors, nurses, and everyone who came to visit in the hospital or the day we got home signed them for each of the kids. I just finished Lane’s…um yeah, he’s 2 – he’ll never know it took me a while to finish the back (don’t tell!) I actually used Matilda’s foot at a template for the signature plates. I thought it would be a nice touch.
I’ve made several for Matilda, but I think my favorite one is the Ladybug quilt. This was my first quilt with no real pattern, and I had to find the designs for the appliques online and kinda fudge them myself. Each ladybug has buttons for dots, and each one is different so we could practice counting.
I made an alphabet quilt for my cousin’s new baby back in May — which automatically made me the best and worst cousin ever because I now feel guilty that I didn’t make quilts for all of my other cousins’ kids. Of course, now I have projects lined up!
I have even donated my quilts and had them auctioned off for charity. The Parrothead club in South Florida has sold 2 of my quilts for fundraisers. They were fun to make, one with a beach theme, and the other a “Cheeseburger in Paradise” theme.
I’m currently working on a few more projects right now: another quilt for Matilda, my first t-shirt quilt to clean out my closet, and I’m always looking for cool designs. If you haven’t received a quilt yet from me, be warned, Christmas is only 3 months away.