Monday, February 25, 2013

Vintage Fabric and Quilt Blocks

Oh my, what an awesome find! I've been sorting through a box of fabric and quilt blocks from my late mother-in-law's spare bedroom. Most of the fabric pieces are vintage flour and sugar sacks from the 1930's and 1940's that belonged to her mother, Lydia Fort Rose. They have been laundered, but probably only once. The holes on the edge from the bag stitching are still clearly evident and the colors are bright and true on sixty-plus year old fabric. A two yard cut piece has a paper tag attached with a tiny safety pin bearing the handwritten price of 59 cents per yard.  These are some of the same prints used in her quilts I wrote about several weeks ago.

The gorgeous completed quilt blocks are of varying sizes and designs. They may have been leftovers from a quilt or sampler blocks that she was trying out. Most of them are machine pieced, some hand stitched.  Paper pattern templates, pinned together with straight pins, are cut out of newspaper and paper bags. A pattern with instructions is printed on what appears to be a paper sack from a dry goods store. Two very tattered old quilts found in the basement are probably beyond repair. They do have portions which could be rescued and used for something once I air them out.

How cool is this? I am so excited that I can't even decide what to do with them. I have everything spread all over my sewing tables and design boards so I can take it all in. I want to preserve a few of the prettiest feed sack pieces. Then I could create a new quilt and make aprons, pillows, tote bags, or framed art out of the rest.

Some people want to inherit lots of money or real estate. While I won't turn down cash, give me vintage fabric, old quilts, pretty pottery, glassware, or antique oak furniture to cherish and I'll be a happy woman! 

Link to read more about feed sack fabric and Granny Rose's Quilts.   

Monday, February 18, 2013

Embracing Change

I've experienced a lot of challenges over the past three months, causing a great deal of change. Dealing with the sickness and death of loved ones is particularly hard. Losing both in-laws and my dog has been rough. Routines have been disrupted, tears shed, plans adjusted, and lessons learned. I've always known that change is inevitable and that living life is about moving forward. My mama told me that things happen like they are supposed to, so make the best of what comes. Sometimes that's easy and sometimes it's difficult.

Here's what I've learned:
  • Change can happen quickly and at any point in our lives.
  • The unselfish kindness of friends is helpful and comforting.
  • It is fine to plan for emergencies but they seldom happen exactly the way we think they will.
  • Acceptance of our emotions can help us deal with change and move forward.
  • We do not have to react immediately to fix every problem; sometimes it is better to wait and see.
  • Quiet reflection and deep breathing can calm us during times of stress.
  • We cannot and should not control every circumstance in life.
  • Resistance to change can cause frustration, anxiety, fear and distress.
  • Allowing change to unfold gives us strength to accept, manage and learn from the experience.
  • When we learn from challenges in life, we become stronger and better able to cope.
  • Making informed, mindful decisions gives us power to deal with whatever change we are facing.
Every single day presents a new set of circumstances. Embrace them and live life!

"In every crisis there is a message. Crises are nature's way of forcing change, breaking down old structures, shaking loose negative habits so that something new and better can take their place." -- Susan Taylor


Monday, February 11, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day

Love is the greatest refreshment in life.  -- Pablo Picasso

The heart that loves is always young.  -- Author Unknown

All you need is love.  -- John Lennon


Monday, February 4, 2013

Waiting Is Hard

For Hazel Rose Ireland
I've never been good at waiting.  I'm just too impatient.  Right now I've been doing a lot of it.  My mother-in-law has been in the hospital and she probably won't recover.   I comforted her and my sweet husband as best I could. 

At the hospital, everyone is waiting for something.  Some are waiting to be born, others to die.  Patients are waiting for pain meds or for the nurse to answer their call button.  People are waiting for procedures to be done and for the test results.  They are waiting to see loved ones, waiting for a doctor, waiting to be admitted, or waiting to be discharged.  Workers are waiting for their shift to end. 

I took yarn and crocheted to help pass the time.  I read magazines and snacked on pretzels.  I walked the halls and played solitaire on my phone.  I made calls and talked with doctors.  It has been much easier to wait knowing that I was where I was supposed to be.  I was there for her and for my family.  There's a peace with that. 

To every thing there is a season...


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