Tuesday, December 20, 2016

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


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Bonnie's Barn Comes Home

 I've written about this piece here and here, so I'm not going to go into a lot of details now. Suffice it to say that when I was asked to test instructions for making a free form barn, I found a picture on line that reminded me of a night when my sister Bonnie and I were lost in Lancaster County. There was a harvest moon and barns everywhere. I had had a difficult time picking out a picture for a project. My sister had been in a serious automobile accident, and I was more focused on her wellbeing than I was on quilting.

Once she was discharged, I was able to concentrate on my project and when I ran out of fabrics for the field in front of the barn, I went over to Bonnie's house and raided her stash for the little scraps that I needed.

Bonnie's Barn ultimately went on to be exhibited along with the other barns in the series at three shows. And then she came home. And wouldn't you know, the day she arrived was Bonnie's birthday!

Bonnie's Barn, hanging where we'd always intended, in our dining room, thanks to Himself.


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Feeling Sheepish


Finished Size: 6" And there's really nothing further to say. 

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Signal Flags?

A week or so ago I gave in to the urge to make Tula Pink blocks out of bright solids. It's been an enjoyable process.

Initially I had planned to make sixteen blocks (they finish at 6") and put wide white borders on them, then apply a 9" template to cut wonky blocks. Turned out to be a bad idea -- they really wanted a 12" template and that just was going to use up more fabric than I wanted to spend on this project.

Himself is partial to tiny cornerstones under almost any circumstances, and I thought they might work very well with these blocks. So I made nine more and went with that plan. We're both pleased with the outcome. He says they look like signal flags. He's right.

Thursday, December 01, 2016

More Blessed

My church sponsors a food pantry for the area and, unfortunately, has many patrons. To gain access, guests need to go to the church office and the secretary will accompany them to the pantry where they may fill a bag or two twice each month.

Some are like clockwork, the secretary tells me; they are there on the designated day, no matter what. Others are frequent visitors but not quite as regular.

A month ago Laura wrote to the congregation with the idea of providing Christmas gift bags for the adults who come to the food pantry. She wanted to make about fifteen bags, mostly for women, but some for male patrons. She said she was looking for someone to come help her put bags together, one afternoon early in December.

Look no further!

Today was the day! Laura and I spent an hour in the great room, ending up with seventeen gift bags. I didn't get a photo at the end of the project, but here is what things looked like at the beginning.

People were so generous! Each female patron received a scarf, a piece of jewelry, a candle, a lotion and/or bath gel, and something else. I had made enough pot holders to contribute so that each recipient had one of those. There were socks, wallets, gloves, dish towels, word puzzle books, all kinds of things.

We had fun and I got the distinct feeling that this is just the first year we'll be doing this. I think I'll aim for twenty pot holders for 2017.