Sep 19, 2012

Yes, I Still Sew and Quilt !

Today, we pick up my SIL in Beaverton and bring her with us as we visit my brother at Vibra Specialty Hospital in Portland. Now, that he is fully out of his many months long coma, and we know he has his mental least verbally... it is even more important that we visit and spend time talking and sharing memories so we can all better judge his needs during this long process of bringing him fully back to us, again.

So, we are actually planning three separate visits this week alone, and that is a lot of driving, visiting, and fitting ins to all of our schedules. But somehow we manage..... and somehow in spite of this event filled life of mine..

I still find time to sew....two sets of potholders....

for my Mid-Valley Quilt Guild ...completely made of scraps from two little quilts that I started at my last guild meeting for  the tubular pieced 'Streak of Lightning' quilts we all made during one day long 'Bolt to Bed' charity quilting day. The quilts are made in a variety of colors and fabrics..I grabbed enough fabrics for these two sets, shown below.  These little ones will go to even littler ones at the Salem Hospital NICU ward for covering preemie isolettes and then go home with the babies, when they get to go home with their parents!

The potholders get made by the thousands..literally...only just not all by me ;) and the profits go towards funding of charitable guild projects. Last year the profits went to the Copper Creek Correctional Institution for the funding of quilting supplies for the women's quilting group, there.

The two little child sized comfort quilts are now all pinned to batts and backs and at the ready to be quilted stage. They should have been finished by now...I've had two weeks since this photo... but real life does get in my way!

And because I visit my almost 97 year old MIL almost every single day, I make lots of Adult Bibs..for her, (for my mom in Alaska, too) and for the nicest 96 year old gentleman at my MIL's small adult care home who wears bibs at every meal to keep his sweater vests clean and looking sharp. He used to love to play golf so a golf themed one for him..biggie sized images of golf bags on this one, as he has limited vision.

And I made and registered and mailed in three more AAQI quilts..this one....from Laurel Burch bright Christmas fabrics..well gift wrapped gifts at least gift fabric!

11,819 - Bright Heart of Many Blessings

and this one......

one of my ever so love to make dragonfly art quilts....

10,680 - Ethereal

and this one....little improvisational strips and bits from Empress's Garden line of fabrics from someone or three little pearls so symbolize the pearls of wisdom that the flowers love to whisper in my ear..

11,372 - At Peace In My Garden

and this one....old shirtings fabric and some vintage mother of pearl buttons.....

11,682 - The Shirt Off Their Backs

and finally! I got the binding on this baby quilt and hung it on the fence to be kissed by the sun and  for its official blessing and by the sunflowers...and the ....

...... the chickens.......they're not real good kissers,
but they sure give sweet little peck, peck, pecks on the hand!

Meet Georgette (eating from my hand, here), Penelope, Matilda, and Gigi....(And did you ever notice? When DH made my arbor arch and I added the little prayer flags..side bar, upper right...Praying for a Miracle....Gigi and Georgette, who were BRAND new additions to the coop then, stood in respectful attention! How cute were they?

PS: Try taking a photo of your own hand as four chickens come up to eat out of it!....staccato pecking that does not hurt...but does surprise one a bit...I keep telling them "Don't bite the hand that feeds you!"

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Now, that's what I have been up home, at least..... with all my fun. I don't show the last three days of shrubbery pruning, or the huge, huge, huge mess I created while doing that. But I filled a big garden cart and three wheelbarrows to overflowing! I never did figure out how to take a photo of myself doing that, however.

And this weekend..... I am planning on going up to Portland's Quilt Expo with my lovely 'once virtual only' quilting friend, "Marathon Quilting Cher" from Portland....who became a real life friend a number of years ago, when we met up with "Quilting and Life in General, Doni from the coast" Sisters and found out we hit if off like a charm pack and howled with laughter all the way through multiple Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, over multiple summers, together.

Cher and I didn't meet up this past summer, so we are long due for a visit and a major quilt show together..and trust me..Quilt Expo is a major one. I'm greasing up my feet for some aisle tromping and applying bandages in anticipation!

Not only will we see all of the kazillion quilts there, but we get to see two of my own quilts on display in a special exhibit for the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI

My two little quilts in the are seeing the world as part of the Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope exhibit. Traveling all over the US from 2012 through 2015, this AAQI traveling exhibit consists of fifty-four small format art quilts, none larger than 9" x 12", are hung amidst 182 "Name Quilts, " each 6 inches wide and 7 feet tall, carrying the names of more than 10,000 individuals who have/had Alzheimer's or a related dementia. The names of loved ones, written on the on the purple fabric patches by family members and friends, to honor the 5.4 million Americans in the United States living with Alzheimer's.

As my own life has been so incredibly touched and altered forever by Alzheimer's Disease and related Dementias, finally getting to see the exhibit and my own little quilts hanging among them, is sure to be a life altering experience, for me as well! I'm bringing my hankie, trust me!!

Until then.....when I will have so much to share, show and say......I thought I would share all of the other many projects I have been working on. You didn't really think that I would let even one day in the midst of absolute chaos ever go without some kind of art or quilting therapy....
......did you? ;) ?

my links:
Make a Scrappy Potholder
Making an Adult Bib
Free Babies, Childrens Quilt Patterns

Michele Bilyeu blogs With Heart and Hands as she shares a quilting journey through her life in Salem, Oregon and Douglas, Alaska and all of her AAQI Quilting. Sharing thousands of links to Free Quilt and Quilt Block Patterns and encouraging others to join in the Liberated Quilting Challenge and make or donate small art quilts to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) Help us change the world, one little quilt at a time!


Lynne said...

Who'd have thought you had time for sewing? Praise the Lord for giving you some personal space.

Diane Wild said...

So glad to hear that your brother is out of his coma and returning to health. It's a long road he has to travel but it sounds like he's up for the trip. My sister finally got home from the hospital yesterday and she's on that same road. So happy to see her in her home and taking baby steps to recovery. Great quilts, by the way. Quilting is such great therapy.

Angie said...

You are amazing, Michele!! :) I am so happy for all of you that your brother continues to recover. A true miracle, along with your SIL. I love seeing your sweet 'girls'. :) And, I love the little Dragonfly quilt. :) You put me to shame with all that you manage to put into a day's time, woman. ;)

Michele Bilyeu said...

Oh, Diane..I am so happy to hear about your sister now being home again! Many,many blessings to her and to you and your entire family. It is such a winding go a few steps forward and then one or two back..but it still goes forward and that is the wonderful part of the challenges. Hugs, hugs!

Michele Bilyeu said...

Who'd have thought it, indeed! And that's why it's even more important that I share. People can get so depressed during hard challenges and they need to know you don't have to give up and give in. You can just bring in the light and grace..for yourself, as well as your loved ones! And you are that as a blogger with all of your comments to me! hugs, hugs!

Michele Bilyeu said...

No shame involved, precious Angie..just a complete lack of sleep. And for your health and happiness..don't give that up! You have your birds and your blooms and your love of people and that is your gift and your time spent from the heart!!!!

Paula, the quilter said...

It is so nice to hear from you again.

Winifred said...

That's wonderful news about your brother Michele. I love those bibs, so practical yet so much nicer than bought stuff.

Yes I think you must sew in your sleep. Take care.

Susan said...

Sewing is such wonderful therapy! I'm glad that you are able to still take time for yourself with everything else that you have going on in your life!

Aileen said...

You are Awesome! I have been trying to sew a little every day. Physical therapy has not worked for me but sewing therapy fills the bill. I too make quilts for AAQi. My hope it to be able to make more than one a month. I guess I need more therapy!
Aileen from Florida

jan said...

Wow, what a schedule. Your quilts are wonderful, very creative and fun. Thoughts and Prayers to you and your family for God's continued blessings.

jenclair said...

I LOVE "The Shirt Off My Back" -- how appropriate for you! Hoping for continued recovery for your brother and that this is a turning point in many ways.