Sunday, June 8, 2014

Returning Slowly

This past week has been beyond sad.  Visitation and the funeral service for my nephew Paul was gut-wrenching.  My brother-in-law Tim looked lost.  My sister Renee was much stronger than I would have been in her shoes.  Grown men sobbed - I'm just not used to seeing that at funerals.  Men are always so stoic but not this time.

I don't think we'll ever be certain why Paul made the choice he did rather than working through his problems with the help of all of us who loved him so much.  For now, I'm done asking 'why' -- I can just be sure that he did what he felt he had to do.  None of us could have changed his mind and that is tough to accept, but we must and we must be there for his family.

I am grateful that I quilt.  That may sound odd, but I was able to channel my sadness into something good and with the assistance of Hazel, my fabulous Juki sewing machine, I put together a quilt for Shawn and her children.  I'm calling it 'Better Than Flowers', as I chose to make them a quilt instead of sending flowers to the funeral home.  After all, flowers are already dead, will be thrown out, and forgotten.  

I planned with Shawn to deliver the quilt to them at her daughter Sophia's soccer game.  I really didn't want to go to their house.  Not there, not yet.  But Sophia had been having a terrible time and did not make it to her game.  Instead, I had to drive to their home and as I approached their door each of their four children greeted me with hugs, kisses, and 'how are you doing?'.  I was so impressed.  Sophia led me inside and Shawn said she knew I had something special for them since I insisted on delivering it in person.

Close up of the piecing:

The pattern is called Syncopated Rhythm from Karen Montgomery.  It's not a new pattern but it was new to me.  I used 12" squares to cut the pieces and trimmed the resulting squares to 10 1/2", making a 60" x 70" throw quilt.  I picked up the batik fabric and the pattern at Cristina's Quilt Shop in Rochester, which recently re-opened.  The border fabric is from Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry. I used Fusi-boo batting and Aurifil thread color #2310, a go-to color for me.  I bound it using the two-fabric method, with orange batik on the front and the green batik used for the backing on the back of the binding.  I'm loving this binding technique -- when you can't decide on what binding fabric to use this settles the dilemma!

I'm actually looking forward to returning to work tomorrow.  I'm hoping that I will have LOADS of work to do to keep me busy.  This week is also our last guild meeting of the year for GLHQ.  It will be a super busy meeting and I will have show 'n tell as I finished the binding for my Perfect Balance wall hanging.  

Maggie can be seen poking her head out behind the quilt -- isn't she cute?  I know, she NEEDS a haircut!


Renee said...

Thanks Suzanne for helping our family. Your special gift and sense of compassionate is as comforting as the quilt will be. xoxoxo

Susan Loretta said...

The quilt is beautiful & I am sure it will comfort Shawn & her children with its pretty colors & the love & sympathy put into every stitch! We are truly blessed to be quilters, it helps us so much to deal with life & express ourselves.

Anonymous said...

~ beautiful quilt & cute Maggie!.. prayers & condolences to you & your family;-D