Sunday, July 14, 2013

"And The Greatest of These is Love" - AAQI Quilt #15,000



I am so honored that my quilt "And The Greatest of These is Love" is the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative's quilt #15,000.

And to know that my quilt is #15,000 and that it is my own #75th quilt that I have donated, marks such a monumental milestone for AAQI and for me and truly means so very much in so many different ways.

I began making and donating my small format art quilts in 2007. I was in Alaska, in my childhood home, on my beloved little Douglas Island across the Gastineau Channel from the capital city of Juneau.  I had been up to Alaska for the past several years in a row, helping my mother and father. But we all knew that I needed to help more and more often, as by then, my mom, my dad, and I all knew that my mother had Alzheimer's Disease.

I knew, that this would be a long and challenging disease progress, and I knew that it was crucial that I keep my own strength and spirits up in order to deal with the challenges. So, with only a small amount of fabric and some basic sewing supplies, I made 6 little fabric postcards and mailed them from Douglas, Ak. to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative

Once I began making and donating my little art quilts, a whole new outlook, a whole new creative world of a different kind of quilting opportunity was opened up. By New Years Day of 2010, I had created and started my own Liberated Quilting Challenge for AAQI and had coerced cajoled a few other liberated quilts into joining the group.

Each year, I have made at least 12 quilts as part of the Quilt a Month Challenge, and when I could make more, I made more. This year, 2013, the last year of AAQI, I poured it on and donated 26 quilts to AAQI meeting my personal goal for a total of 75.  And best of all...my little Liberated Quilting Challenge group has now contributed over 600 quilts to AAQI. For such a small group of quilters, with only about two dozen making the majority of quilts for my group, I am so thrilled and so proud of ALL of us, and so super, super proud of AAQI for all it has accomplished!

AAQI will have earned $1,000,000 by the end of this our final year with this wonderful, wonderful organization.

I am so thrilled, and so honored to have contributed quilt #15,000 to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI)  because in my heart of hearts, I do feel like we have made a difference. We have funded Alzheimer's research grants at major institutions..over and over and they have made inroads in so many different and varying ways.

Please, continue to support us by buying quilts from our sale page, and bidding on our monthly auctions. This quilt...#15,000 will be available at auction at a later date. And of course, Ami Simms and her beautiful bevy of volunteers will be bringing thousands of quilts to the Houston International Quilt Festival in November!


See more about the quilt, AAQI, and how you can help fund Alzheimer's research at:

AAQI Update Blog: #15,000th Quilt

Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI)

 My AAQI Liberated Quilting Challenge


Michele Bilyeu blogs With Heart and Hands as she shares a quilting journey through her life in Salem, Oregon and Douglas, Alaska. Sewing, quilting, and wildcrafting, with small format art quilts, prayer flags, and comfort quilts for a variety of charitable programs. And best of all, sharing thousands of links to Free Quilt and Quilt Block Patterns and encouraging others to join in her Liberated Quilting Challenge and make and donate small art quilts to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) Help us change the world, one little quilt at a time!

16 comments:

  1. So wonderful to read how your commitment grew as you experienced the reach of Alzheimer's in the lives of all those around you.

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  2. Anonymous11:00 AM

    Congratulations, Michelle. It's beautiful!

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  3. What a good and generous heart you have. Your parents are lucky to have such a wonderful daughter. I hope your quilt raises a lot of money to fund research to find effective treatment for this very cruel disease.

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    1. Thank you So very much, Karen! It has all been an unbelievable challenge, but it had made me stronger, and stronger, and stronger! And it changed my brothers and a very dear SIL, so much and brought out their own abilities to do more than they ever dreamed of, as they now have taken over the really, really hard work that is required to care for our mother at home.

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  4. Congratulations!! I am in awe of your beautiful quilt work.

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    1. Oh, Mariarose..what a truly beautiful thing to say! Thank you so very, very much!

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  5. That is my favorite bible verse!! Love your quilt!

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    1. Thank you, Julie! How much more perfect could have possibly ended up! I am so humbled and so proud that it was selected for this special occasion!

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  6. PS to everyone, I am a liberated aka wonky quilter..all those crooked horizontal strips took a lot of liberated, hard work ;)

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  7. Love your art quilting. Just beautiful. Congratulations to you and the group.

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  8. Congratulations on being number 15,000. Wow, AAQI has really come a long way from its beginnings. Your quilt is just lovely and thanks for all the work you have done to help AAQI reach it Million Dollar goal.

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    1. Thanks, Jan! And right back at you/. Y
      ou've been an amazing supporter!

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  9. amazing accomplishment both on your part on so many levels and all of you (us) together! You have been and I know will continue to be a most amazing and effective cheerleader for this cause. thank you so much for sharing

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  10. Thanks, Cher! Now on to the next accomplishment...surviving and not losing me at the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show ;) Photos and Stories to come!!!

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  11. Anonymous10:13 PM

    I have read your blog and followed this story or a long time. I am proud of you too, it is quite an accomplisment. Congratulations to you and your group.

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  12. Thank you so much..on behalf of all of who who have donated to this cause. I appreciate your support!

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Michele Bilyeu blogs "With Heart and Hands" as she journeys between Douglas, Alaska and Salem, Oregon.