Sunday, December 20, 2015

The Birds

It's that time again.

An important part of Christmas for me since I've become a blogger is to publish my friend Frank's poem that he shared with me many years ago. I've shared it each year with my readers, and -- God willing -- I will do it again next year, and the next and the next.





THE BIRDS



IT WASN'T THAT HE DIDN'T LIKE CHRISTMAS

HE ENJOYED THE HOLIDAY FUN

ALL THE BRIGHT COLORS AND SUDDEN GOOD WILL

AND THE CHILDREN'S HAPPY SUSPENSE


BUT HE COULDN'T BELIEVE IN CHRISTMAS

IN THE INCARNATION I MEAN

GOD LIVING A MAN-LIFE LIKE HIS? WHAT FOR?

IT JUST DIDN'T MAKE SENSE TO HIM



HE SAT BY THE FIRE

WARM IN HIS HOME

ON CHRISTMAS EVE ALONE

THE FAMILY GONE OFF TO MIDNIGHT MASS



HE HEARD A THUMP AT THE WINDOW

AND THEN ANOTHER

SOME MISCHIEF BOY OUT FOR FUN HE THOUGHT

HE WENT TO THE WINDOW TO CHASE HIM WITH A GLANCE


BUT FOUND NO BOY

BUT A SPARROW FLOCK

LURED BY THE LIGHT AND SIGHT OF WARMTH

HAD TRIED TO COME THROUGH HIS WINDOW


THEY HUDDLED NOW IN THE SNOW

WITH NO PLACE TO GO

AND HE FELT COMPASSION FOR THEM

HE PUT ON HIS BOOTS AND JACKET AND SCARF

AND OUT HE WENT TO OPEN THE GARAGE

TO GIVE THEM SHELTER


BUT THEY WOULD NOT COME

SO HE TURNED ON THE LIGHT

BUT THEY WOULD NOT COME


HE WENT AND GOT BREAD

AND THREW IT MANNA LIKE UPON THE SNOW

A PATH TO FOLLOW

BUT THEY WOULD NOT COME


HE TRIED TO HERD THEM IN

SHOUTING AND WAVING HIS ARMS

BUT THEY WOULD NOT COME


I'M SCARING THEM HE THOUGHT

I'M SO BIG COMPARED TO THEM

AND DIFFERENT


IF BUT FOR A MOMENT I COULD BE A SPARROW

I COULD LEAD THEM THROUGH THE DOOR

I COULD LEAD THEM THROUGH.....THE DOOR



FRANK A. VOLLMER 

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Give-Away Winner

Thank you to the twenty-eight people who committed to Random Acts of Kindness. The give-away winner is Sue, who wrote:

My neighbor has been so supportive since my husband died earlier this year. She cares for her 18month old grandson. I'm offering to keep him tomorrow so she can finish her Christmas shopping.

I enjoy reading your blog, your quilting projects are often just my style. I like traditional with a twist or two!


Sue, please email me with your name and mailing address and your mystery gift will be in the mail shortly.

Monday, December 14, 2015

1985

This is my 1985th post since I began blogging a good many years ago.  I had anticipated having my 2000th post before the end of 2015 and holding a big celebration.

It doesn't look as though that is going to happen.

So how about a mystery give-away now, in anticipation?

I don't know yet exactly what it will be. Definitely there will be something handmade by me. Prolly there will be a pattern. More than likely, a little fabric will be involved. It won't be as big a package as the picture shows and it certainly will not be wrapped that beautifully.

To have a chance to win, just leave a comment about one Random Act of Kindness you performed or will perform today, keeping in mind these things: (1) If you are a no-reply commenter, I won't know how to contact you unless you provide your email address. (2) Please don't publicize my give-away on your blog; this is just for my regular readers (who have faithfully followed even during my recent periods of silence). (3) If you're a reader but not a quilter, the handmade item is something you will be able to use and enjoy, and you just might know a quilter who would appreciate any quilty items!


Sunday, December 13, 2015

Two More


This lively quilt that was so much fun to make will be going to its rightful owner later this month. The recipient is -- I think -- not a blog reader.




This quilt is made from 6" CW fabric blocks, some of which came from The Farmer's Wife and others just because I like them. The quilt is a gift for someone who needs a reminder to take a nap.


Friday, December 11, 2015

A Boy or a Girl?


The autistic school where I spend three mornings each week might be called a hotbed of fertility. Nearly all of the teachers are in their late-twenties-to-early-thirties, so it is understandable. One of my favorites is expecting a boy or a girl later this month. I enjoyed making this Kaffe-ish quilt for that little one.


Wednesday, December 09, 2015

May

Who's that woman in that picture? It's May Boatwright from The Secret Life of Bees. The woman who feels everyone else's sorrows so deeply that most sadness wrecks her.

People have asked me why my blogging has fallen off of late. I think it is because I have a new understanding of May. I don't feel like my usual jolly, creative, happy, peaceful self.

I am terribly saddened by the violence that seems to be everywhere. The Paris massacre occurred during a weekend getaway with a group of quilters, taking the edge off of the joy of being together. Then there was San Bernardino. And so many other senseless shootings. Someone said, "You know what's the worst thing about today's shooting? That it's today's shooting."

I am incredulous that most of the leaders of this country don't see a need for more stringent gun control. I am disgusted with those who say that guns don't kill people; people do. I am appalled that a distant (and growing more distant) relative supports the NRA.

And then there's the candidate. What he is saying, what he is proposing, is so horrific that I don't even think I have the words. Worse, apparently there really are Americans who support this racist, egotistical man (probably that relative, I fear).

I thought about not reading the news anymore, but that would be irresponsible and, besides, it's all over Facebook.

So I'm kind of hunkering down and focusing more intently on the family, reveling in the small successes of my autistic students, sewing as much as I can, and generally avoiding much of the world.

I'm an empathetic person. That's what makes me a good hospital chaplain. But being empathetic has its downside, I'm discovering. I feel like May Boatwright.



Pink


Each spring my granddaughter's ballet school director holds a massive tea party at the ballet school to benefit Susan G. Komen. Last year I asked if she would like a little girl's quilt for the raffle area; she would. I told her I would make a quilt for her tea party every year that Caroline takes dance lessons. Here is my quilt for this year. While I have some issues with Susan G. Komen, I have nothing but admiration for Jane Lopoten and her ballet school.


Monday, December 07, 2015

The Gang's All Here


Honestly, I don't know where November went! Seemed like we were just morning-after-Halloween and now here we are, well into December.

I picked up some quilts from the machinist right before Thanksgiving and now they are all bound and ready for their recipients.

My younger granddaughter Aberdeen doesn't read my blog, so I'm feeling as though it is safe to post this photo. This quilt was begun back in the summer of 2012 during the Olympics, when I organized a swap with a whole lot of other enthusiastic quilters, some of whom live in different countries. It was quilted with a paper-doll design. I suppose the sashing interferes with the idea of all of these diverse children holding hands, but I thought they would show better with some space between them. I love this quilt and I hope Aberdeen does, too. It will be her Christmas present.

Many of the athletes are no longer in the news, such as that cute British guy in the tiny swimsuit at the start of row three. He has a french knot for a belly button. Usain Bolt is in the center of the top row, and that darling American gymnast is somewhere in her purple leotard. I thoroughly enjoyed every step of making this quilt.

My gratitude to Lynn for getting us going on this wonderful idea.