Jeanne Hewell-Chambers

& her barefoot heart

Page 2 of 98

Calder Ray’s Standing Invitation

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The clock ticks loudly. Time to make that quilt for my soon-to-be born grandchild. I have no idea what I want it to look like – something that doesn’t alarm me cause I usually start with only the vaguest notion of what I want to do. Even on the rare occasion when I do have a detailed, clear idea, it seldom turns out the way I envisioned, creativity being what it is and all. Not knowing the gender or room color, I gather my supplies, selecting colors that tickles my eyes and cloth that satisfies my touch. I trust my Bones.

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Ideas and images come to call as I go along. I cut scraps into ovals and send them out to my elves, asking them to get signatures for me. And when the pieces come back, I decide I have to – I just have to – stitch over the autographs to make them more visible, more lasting.

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I stitch wherever I am – in the car, on the sofa, in the studio. Sometimes I stitch in the darkness of a hospital room.

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and at my niece’s house. (Which reminds me: I need to order them some more bubble juice.)

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My 2 year old great nephew is gracious enough to model a monkey for me, something to fill that unexpected bare spot. Once it is stitched, he seems a little under-enthusiastic about my monkey (which indicates his bend towards the more literal-brained side of the family). (Which is all of them except Nancy.) (Though a couple of them seem to be melting a little bit as they go along.)

BirdAndNest1 copy

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I stitch the bird and the nest and the flock of birds while at my son’s house. Because all I could hear on the inside was a short tape of things my father-in-law said when I showed him the sketches I made on my first day of drawing class, I decide to cut freehand instead of drawing on the fabric and cutting on the lines. I feel like a proud kindergartner when I show my son the impromptu birds and nest.  I’m not sure he noticed the heart-shaped eggs. They were a last-minute addition. Of course.

(Note: See that autograph just to the right of the top bird on the left in the picture above? That’s Nancy’s signature. And the one to the right of it? That’s my 2-year old great-nephew’s siggie.)

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I stitch the trunk (which was originally hanging down below the quilt) and the branches while at my daughter’s house. Oh those branches. What a fit they give all of us – Alison, The Engineer, and me. I lay down fabric for each branch to indicate the different branches of the family tree. But it is too chaotic – too much visual clutter. The three of us grow quite cranky. Nobody knows what to do. Finally, in a Hail Mary foot stomp kind of move, I find enough of the same fabric, fold it over and over again, lay it down on the already-attached branches, and voila! My eyes calm and purr. Each branch now sports a different base and the same top cover. The same, but different. Together, but separate. I like that. And the trunk? It is far too distracting hanging down, so I snip it off and hem it up.

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At The Very Last Minute, I add an impromptu gathering of our cats and dogs, sitting in a surprise flower bed. Then I add the invitation . . . When becoming gets too hard, go to the Forest. Maybe this is one time I should’ve printed my words on paper and stitched through the paper cause then I might’ve had room to say “family” forest. Hopefully everybody – and most especially You Know Who – gets the idea.

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Finally this happens

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and this (oh those Chambers men)

and 3 months later, when they come for a visit here atop the mountain,
this happens while Calder Ray lays on a pallet of 3 quilts made by my grandmother,
his great great grandmother. First we sing our first duet . . .

. . . then one sings and the other dances.
In this neck of the woods, we call that a Hootenanny.
(And um, about that singing. It’s fairly obvious to everybody
that Alison does not get her talent from me.)

SignedSealedDelivered

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And now the quilt  – Calder Ray’s Standing Invitation – hangs in his room.
Signed. Sealed. Delivered.
(Note the wall color – ha!)
Everybody calls him Calder, but I’m Southern,
and we like double names, so I call him Calder Ray.

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And on top of the shelves under the quilt is this blue elephant. I bought it before he was born cause I knew – I just knew – he was gonna’ be a boy. Because so many different colors of dirt and rocks lie between Calder Ray and me, I keep Mr. Blue Elephant filled to the brim with handwritten bedtime notes from me. When he’s old enough to appreciate it, his parents are supposed to pull one out every night when he’s tucked into bed and read it to him. Eventually he’ll be able to read them himself, of course, and I already know things I want to write him when he’s off at college or heading down The aisle. You know I do.

I also have an inkling of another quilt I want to make him. Well, 12 or 15 quilts, actually. One to wrap up in when he is sick. One to wrap up in when he needs fortification. One to lay on for nap time. A quilt to sleep under on Christmas Eve, another for Valentine’s Day (also my birthday, so that one will have to be special), his birthday quilt, a New Year’s quilt, a First Day of School quilt, and a big, anytime/anywhere quilt that will remind him of the special sauce I’ve already begun whispering to him every chance I get:

You are kind.
You are funny.
You are smart.
You are creative.

This quilt I can already see.

Inside Envelope 86: Deena Sanders

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When Deena Sanders saw a post on the Tree City Quilter’s Guild Facebook page, she jumped right into her studio and made five blocks.

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Deena writes:

I feel so bad for those people that were murdered for senseless acts of hate. I work for The University of Florida in the Gene Therapy Department in the Vector Core Lab and what we do is make up vectors for the researchers to use in their work against diseases that people have based on congenital problems (lacking certain genes to do certain jobs in the body, and therefore making diseases, some fatal).  The majority of the diseases that we work with have to do with muscular dystrophy and the like. (Pompe disease, Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, etc.).  I am afraid that the children with these diseases would probably fall under the red X’s back in the time when this happened. It is for this reason that I am contributing my blocks to this project.  I hope this helps.

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It does help, Deena. It helps so much. Thank you for being a part of The 70273 Project, for the work you do when you’re not making quilts, and for realizing the importance of your work and the relevance to The 70273 Project.

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You can find Deena in these digital locations. Stop by and have a look at the beauty she creates.
Facebook page
Etsy shop

~~~~~~~

Have you . . .
made some blocks?
joined the Facebook group?
liked the Facebook page?
followed the Pinterest board?
subscribed to the blog?
considered making a Group quilt?

 

Action T4: Correspondence with Families Concerning Deaths

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The ‘Black Triangle’ was worn by Aktion T4 (Tiergartenstraße 4) officials. The name is taken from a villa in the Berlin district of Tiergarten which housed the operation headquarters.

In a previous post we talked about the correspondence from family members desperate to know the whereabouts of their loved ones and the form letter responses sent by the T4 committee in response. Soon after the transfer of a person from the institution to the so-called receiving center, a letter was sent to the family. Typed on the stationery of the hospital and signed by the doctor “handling” the case, this personalized form letter would announce with great sadness the death of the patient. The cause of death was explained, condolences offered,  suitable disposition of the remains discussed, and reminders issued that because the patient’s tormented life was now ended, loved ones could rejoice and be glad.

A typical example of a condolence letter from one of the receiving centers:

My Dear Frau S . . . 

We are sincerely sorry to tell you that your daughter F. S., who had to be transferred to this institution in accordance with measures taken by the National Defense Commissioner, died suddenly and unexpectedly here of a tumor of the brain, on the 5th August 1940. The life of the decreased had been a torment to her on account of her severe mental trouble. You should, therefore, feel that her death was a happy release. As this institution is threatened by an epidemic at the present time, the police have ordered immediate cremation of th body. We would ask you to let us know to what cemetery we may arrange for the police to send the urn containing the mortal remains of the deceased. Any inquiries should be addressed to this institution in writing, visits being for the present forbidden as part of the police’s precautions against infection.

Dr. Koller

And another similar letter from a different receiving institution . . .

My dear Doctor  _______:

We regret to inform you that your son, who had to be transferred to our institution, has died here unexpectedly as a result of abscessed tonsils on 17 February. We are sorry to say that all our medical efforts were in vain. He died quietly and without any pain. With his serious and incurable disease, death means relief for him.

Due to the present danger of epidemic here, the body of the deceased had to be cremated immediately according to police request. We are asking you to inform us at your earliest convenience whether you want the urn with the earthly remains interred at any special cemetery. In that case we ask you to name the cemetery and give its correct address so that we can have the urn transferred to the administration of that cemetery. If you have no special wishes as to the burying or if you fail to inform us within a month, we will have th turn buried here free of charge. The belongings of the deceased had to be burned due to the danger of spreading of disease.

We enclose two copies of the death certificate which you will carefully keep in order to submit eventually to the authorities.

Heil Hitler
by order

Dr. Meyer

T4 leadership insisted the letters be “personalized” to deflect suspicion and thwart an onslaught of questions from families. In a Top Secret document, local authorities were directed to keep the letters the same, but different – to alter form letters just enough to avoid irritation, suspicion, questions.

Cause of death proved a sticky wicket for T4 officials. To avoid questions and suspicions, physicians took great pains to find a cause of death suitable to the patient. A guide was developed by the T4 leadership committee for use by doctors and staff preparing death letters and certificates. A list of acceptable causes of death was made, complete with notes of things to keep in mind to ensure that the cause of death assigned and medical history of the patient were consistent. For example, septicemia (also called sepsis) was on the list of acceptable causes of death for the mentally ill, with cautionary notes to avoid using this particular illness as a cause of death if the patient was known to be meticulously clean. Sepsis was preferable for “young, strong patients who smear readily.”  The notes, fairly thorough in their scope, also cautioned that if septicemia was used as a cause of death, care should be taken to remember that “seven to eight days have to be allowed for the illness to take effect.”

In the Nuremberg trials, one T4 physician testified that it would not have looked right for carbon monoxide asphyxiation to be given as the cause of death for all the patients in his care. It would have been “unprofessional”, he said, indirectly suggesting that T4 physicians maintained their sense of propriety by lying, fabricating credible causes of death for the patients they murdered.

It makes my heart hurt, this kind of “logic” that allowed T4 physicians to feel noble, live with themselves, and sleep at night.

Also at the Nuremberg trials, the director of one of the receiving centers insisted that the killing program known as T4 was fully, absolutely legal. As a follow-up question he was asked, “If that was the case, why bother with false death certificates?” to which he replied, “I did not want to scare the population by not filling in a diagnosis. I could not put down on the death certificate, ‘We killed them.'”

Week 26 in Review (8/8 – 8/14 2016)

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Here’s a thumbnail view of what happened this past week in The 70273 Project:

~~ If you’ll look in the right sidebar, you’ll see code you can copy and paste on your blog to show that you’re a member of The 70,273 Project Team. Please grab the code and display it proudly.

~~ We currently have 637 likes on The 70273 Project Facebook page and, thanks to the efforts of Debbie Spouse Buckner, the number of folks gathered around our virtual campfire in The 70273 Project Facebook group has grown to 207 folks. As MJ Kinman mentioned recently, we will soon be petitioning for grants, so please do stop by and show your support by liking the Facebook page and joining the Facebook group and encouraging folks you know to do the same. It warms the hearts – or should I say checkbooks – of grantors to see that the project is supported far, wide, and consistently.

~~ Chloe Grice penned our Monday Morsel. Won’t you please send me a quote or a thought or a photo – something for an upcoming Monday Morsel?

The whispering voices of these blocks are already increasing in volume in my ears even as their numbers swell into life. They call me to work, their voices becoming at times demanding. Do this! Take that out, I don’t like it. That’s not me.

I have spent the last two weeks trying to do other, absorbing sewing tasks, projects left incomplete in the chaos of my life that have their own distinctive calls. I am pulled almost without will, back into the red and white world we are creating with our fingers, our collectively clever hands.

The pure, clean white, cleansing the now ancient memories of pain, of dirt, of neglect and suffering. I think of those suffering within their minds, aware but trapped inside. I think of children, mute with anguish and loss. I think of men with damaged bodies, yearning for escape from their inevitable fate. And women. Grieving, screaming, dying. The white cloth soothes me and tissue thin it sits with me, this epitaph, an unspoken prayer for release. Souls set free.

~~ I continue to receive encouraging, enthusiastic emails like the one from Catherine Symchych, who saw a flyer about The 70273 Project in a quilt shop in Michigan, and wants to do a Group quilt with seventh graders in her school. And I heard from Susan Himmelman Bianchi that she received permission from the board of directors to make a presentation about The 70273 Project to a 500+ members of an association she belongs to. After the general meeting, notices about The 70273 Project will be posted on their facebook page and go out in their newsletter. Thank you Catherine and Susan and all the rest of you who are regularly spreading the word and encouraging others to join us in commemorating the 70,273 disabled people who died at the hands of Aktion T4 and celebrating the countless numbers of special needs people who live among us today.

Mail Call Week 26

~~ Thanks to envelopes and boxes from Tari Vickery, Linda Heron, Linda SmithMargaret WilliamsLaurie Dunn and her grandchildren Steven, Grace, Jillian, and William, our block count climbs to 2843! Kitty Sorgen, it sure looks like I’ll have 3,000 blocks in my hands by 9/5/2016, so be thinking about our next goal.

Till next week . . . y’all keep smiling and stitching.

Week 25 in Review (8/1-8/7 2016)

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What a week it’s been . . .

~~ Issue #4 of The Blue Mountain Review came out containing an article I penned about The 70273 Project.

~~ Megan Null penned our Monday Meditational Morsel. If you’d be willing to contribute food for thought and stitching for one (or more) weeks, please let me know. Here’s Megan’s good MMM:

Happy Monday! 

Here’s something to think about as you count blocks. 

This project is important to me and something I think and talk about often. How many blocks have I made so far? Three. Does that mean that I’m slacking? NO!

We’re commemorating and celebrating 70,273 people. Each block is special and important. We’ll get to the final number, don’t worry. Let’s appreciate the progress. “Only” three represents three actual real human beings. 

Try to resist the urge to compare yourself to others in order to put yourself down. If you’re here in this group you CARE and that means you’re doing great!

Thank you, Megan!

~~ I am doing some tinkering under the hood here at the blog, and one thing I’m doing is adding links to blogs and web sites, so if you’re a member of The 70273 Project Tribe and have a blog or web site, please email me the name and a link so I can include you.

~~ I’m also adding a collection of blog posts penned about The 70273 Project, so if you’ve written one, would you please send me a link to that, too.

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~~ Thanks to envelopes from Lori East, Frances Holliday Alford; Bobbi Penman; Maryellen “Graz” Gryseqicz; Lori DeJarnatt; Deborah McKinnon, and Pat Gaska, our block count is now at . . . are you ready for it . . . 2692! Being allergic to math, I asked The Engineer, and he tells me we need only 308 more blocks to hit Kitty Sorgen’s goal of 3000 blocks in my hands by 9/5/2016. That’s about 4 weeks from now, y’all, so I have no doubt we’ll make her goal and then some. Thank y’all.

And that’s about all I can think of that happened last week, so I’ll excuse myself and head on back to visit with my friends who came to visit.

~~~~~~~

How can you be a part of The 70273 Project?
Make blocks.
Pen a Monday Meditational Morsel. (email me: whollyjeanne (at) gmail (dot) com)
Subscribe to the blog.
Make a Group Quilt.
Write about the project or have me write one for you. (email me: whollyjeanne (at) gmail (dot) com)
Join us around the FB Group Campfire.
Like our FB Page.

Inside Envelope #46: Carol Howard Donati

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Carol, in her own words . . .

Hi there, my name is Carol Howard Donati. I am a Canadian mixed media artist. I found your blog on line, Jeanne, and was impressed, first of all with who you are, and then with this very important project. Thank you for bringing to our attention this hidden fact of history that is so relevant to our understanding today. I knew right away I wanted to take part in celebrating the value of the lives of the 70,273!

Your project is a good fit with my own work, the theme of which is to draw attention to the rituals and patterns of our everyday lives and things we might take for granted. I sewed my first block using a scrap of embroidered table linen as the base.

CarolHowardDonati08Apr16b

For my second block I printed the X’s with a stencil cut from an acetate sheet (I am currently in an Artist Residency Program at the Ottawa School of Art’s Print Studio!).

Thank you for welcoming me to the project.

Jeanne here . . .

You know, Carol, after a dark thirty in the morning epiphany several years ago, I realize that the focus in my cloth work, performance, and perhaps in writing, too is to shine a light between the cracks to see who and/or what fell there. It seems we’re walking parallel paths, you and I. Lucky me!

Thank you, Carol, for being a part of The 70273 Project.  Your work is beautiful.

~~~~~~~

Wanna’ make some blocks for The 70273 Project?
Wanna’ subscribe so you don’t miss anything?
Wanna’ gather round The 70273 Project campfire on Facebook?

Week 24 in Review (7/25 – 7/31/2016)

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Highlights of the week include:

~~ A blog post by Lori D. Word’s still getting out, and, because we’re on the verge of applying for grants and seeking sponsorships which means we need to show interest, MJ Kinman set a goal for us of 500 followers on The 70273 Project Facebook page by the fall, so please make sure you’ve liked ti and tell all your friends ’cause I know you’re popular.

~~ A new category of quilts: Group quilts. You can read all about it here, but the thumbnail version is this: if you’d like to raise your hand and be Group Leader (we call them Gatherers) for your family, your coworkers, your club members, your quilt guild – wherever there are more than 2 people gathered, you ask them to make blocks, then piece those blocks into a top and quilt it to make a quilt for The 70273 Project.  If you’re interested in becoming a Gatherer, let me know.

~~ The Monday Meditational Morsels continue, with MJ Kinman posting for this last Monday. “We don’t have to wait for some grand Utopian future. The future is an endless succession of presents, and to live now as we think humans should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.” ~ Adapted from Howard Zinn’s biography, “You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving Train” If you’d like to submit a quote or a word or a positive thought that we can stitch into blocks for The 70273 Project, please let me know and I’ll assign you a date. (You can submit more than once, too, by the way.) The MMM’s go up every Monday morning around our Facebook campfire.

~~ Within hours of reading about the Group quilt category, Jan MacFayden from Australia, sent me a note saying she’s willing to be a Gatherer for the New Zealand and Australia areas. So if y’all live in that neck of the woods, feel free to reach out to Jan and figure out how to get your blocks to her for piecing and quilting. Thank you, Jan. You epitomize the spirit of The 70273 Project.

~~ Work on Quilts 2, 3, and 4 continues, and we have up to Quilt 18 in the queue right now  – meaning people have graciously raised their hand and offered to Piece and/or Quilt – so please keep making and sending those blocks!

~~ We remain at 77 different countries.

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~~ Thanks to Carolyn Katzoff, we close out the week with a block count of 2542. Thank you, Carolyn, you prolific block maker you.

Thank y’all for continuing to be a part of The 70273 Project . . . for commemorating those who died and celebrating those who live.

Till next week . . .

Gatherers and Groups: Another Way to Make Quilts

KittySorgenBlockssome of Kitty Sorgen’s blocks

Calling all over achievers, natural born leaders, and pure bred angels . . .

Yesterday I revealed a new way to make quilts for The 70273 Project. Today we need to talk more about the systems that need to be in place to allow y’all the space to be creative and still get me the information I need. (Important note: This system is subject to change as suggestions come in and as we begin to implement it and discover better ways.)

First, the vocabulary:
Gatherers are the people who raise their hand and offer to (a) get members of a particular group to make blocks that are, in turn, pieced and quilted as a Group Quilt in The 70273 Project. Maybe you’ll invite coworkers to contribute a block, maybe you’ll ask classmates or members of your bridge club or maybe you’ll offer to gather blocks from nearby geographical areas and turn them into quilts. Gatherers take the lead and accept responsibility for gathering blocks and turning them into quilts.

Group Quilts is this new category of quilts. Instead of making quilts from a random selection of blocks contributed by Makers, blocks are contributed by members of a specific group or geographical area, and the eventual quilt represents their group’s participation in The 70273 Project.

Now here’s what we really need to talk about . . .

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This is a screen shot showing some of the information I keep on each and every block that’s contributed to The 70273 Project. Even though the Group Quilts will come to me as a complete quilt instead of as an envelope of blocks, I still need this information for each block, so here’s what I’m proposing:

  1. If you have a hankering to be a Gatherer, contact me via email or Facebook Messenger before you proceed. We’ll huddle up and get you ready to go.
  2. Once we’ve talked, you can start getting the word out, encouraging people in your group to make blocks. Set a timeline, if you like (that’s up to you), and let group members know how to get the blocks to you. (Note: blocks must be made following the guidelines we follow now: bases on white fabric cut in one of these sizes 3.5″ x 6.5″ or 6.5″ x 9.5″ or 9.5″ x 12.5″ rectangles with 2 red X’s applied. No writing or other embellishments on the block.)
  3. Make sure each Maker downloads, completes, and signs a Provenance Form to send to you with their blocks.
  4. When blocks arrive at your doorstep, you’ll need to take a photo of the Provenance Form and each individual block. Scanning works really well, too, in fact, that’s what works best for me, and you will, after all, become a mini-Jeanne, so maybe it’ll work better for you, too. Scans are easier to name and keep track of in your computer.
  5. Assign each block a temporary number using this file name format: Your Initials.The Temporary Block Number. The Maker’s Name. Play along with me: You are a Gatherer, and your name is Absolute Angel. The Engineer and I send you three blocks a piece, along with our signed Provenance Forms, of course. You scan the P Forms, then you scan each block, saving it in your computer as: AA.1.JeanneHewellChambers.jpg; AA.2.JeanneHewellChambers.jpg; AA.3.JeanneHewellChambers.jpg and AA.4.TheEngineer.jpg; AA.5.TheEngineer.jpg; and AA.6.TheEngineer.jpg. Make sense?
  6. Create an i.d. tag for each block by writing the name (as generated in #5) on a small piece of cloth or a small piece of card stock paper and pinning it to one of the red X’s using a safety pin or one of those micro fastener gizmos (the 4.4mm size works perfectly), if you have one. This identification tag will remain on the block throughout Piecing and Quilting, and I will remove the tags once I have the quilt in hand and have all the information I need for the database and the quilt label.
  7. Piecing and Quiltlng is the same as always. MJ Kinman will make sure you have everything you need to know to get creative and get ‘er done.
  8. When the quilt is finished, get it to me (remember: with the temporary i.d. tags in place on each block) along with the Provenance Forms for each Maker, the name and contact info for the Piecer, and the name and contact info for the Quilter. And hey, if you want to hand deliver, come on out here and let the falls that run right (and I do mean “right”) by our house be your lullaby.

As a Gatherer, you’ll basically be doing what I do – making sure that each person who touches this project gets credit and that we can track who created which blocks. You can elect to be a Gatherer and a Maker and a Piecer and a Quilter or any combination of the four roles. Whatever hats you choose to wear, you will be responsible for the seeing that the quilt gets finished by the guidelines already in place, that it finds its way back to me, and that I know who all I need to thank.

Now listen, y’all, after reading yesterday’s blog post, Jan Ebbott MacFayden messaged me, raising her hand to be a Gatherer, Piecer, and Quilter for folks in the New Zealand and Australia neck of the woods. Jan writes:

Hi Jeanne, I have recently joined your inspirational group and have posted a share about the group on my FB page. I mainly make quilts to donate to the needy but this project really speaks to me. I started working with the disabled as a volunteer when I was 16, then went on to become a nurse and now work as a hospital manager. I have asked for blocks to be sent to me and will make them into quilts and send them on to you. I’m happy to receive blocks from other Australians and New Zealand if that is OK with you. Please feel free to post this on your group FB page if this is OK with you. Thank you for allowing us to participate in making your vision a reality. Hugs, Jan Mac, Australia

Have I told y’all lately how much I love my job? Y’all are magic. Pure, unadulterated magic.

Anyway, you can find Jan on facebook and on her good blog. And hey, for all you prolific Makers in Australia, maybe this can save you some postage money. Jan already  has ideas about how she’ll get the quilts to me, and I can’t wait till the day when I call her Sugar to her face.

In addition to commemorating those who died and celebrating those who live, I am committed to creating something y’all will feel proud to be a part of, something that you will be honored to have your name attached to. Big huge thanks to each and every one of you for making my job so enjoyable, meaningful, and easy.

If you have any questions, suggestions, or ideas, just holler.

A Peek Inside Envelope 103 from Margaret Williams Herself

EnvelopeJewelryMargaretWilliams7Jul16

Y’all know how I love me some envelope jewelry,
and let me tell you: Margaret Williams never fails to delight.

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In her most recent envelope,

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Margaret sent these beautiful blocks

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for The 70273 Project,
made in honor of the Little Light of Mine
choir and dance group composed of adults with special needs.

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The choir, formed 40 years ago
and currently under the direction of Linda Weaver,

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recently visited Margaret’s church
and regaled the congregation with song and signing.

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“It’s always a wonderful week at St. Andrews
when the Little Light of Mine group leads the worship service,” writes Margaret.

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Margaret also included
The Beatitudes for People with Special Needs
by Anne McKinnon.
I’ve never heard of this, and I like it.
Like it a lot.
It speaks to the energy
I feel and see and hear around The 70273 Project campfire . . .

Blessed are you who take the time to listen to difficult speech,
for you to help us know that if we persevere we can be understood.

Blessed are you who work with us in public places and ignore the stares of strangers,
for in your friendship we feel good to be ourselves.

Blessed are you who never bid us to “hurry up”
and more blessed are you who do not snatch our tasks
from our hands to do them for us,
for often we need time rather than help.

Blessed are you who stand beside us as we enter new and untried ventures,
for our Unsureness will be outweighed
by the times when we surprise ourselves and you.

Blessed are you who ask for our help
and realize our greatest need is to be needed.

Blessed are you who help us with graciousness,
for often we need the help we cannot ask for.

Blessed are you when, by all things, you assure us
that what makes us individuals is not our particular disability or difficulty
but our beautiful personhood which no handicapping condition can define.

Rejoice . . . and be exceedingly glad
for your understanding and love
has opened doors for us
to enjoy life to its fullest
and you have helped us
believe in ourselves
as valued and gifted people.

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You can find Little Light of Mine on Facebook,

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Right now, Margaret is minding her P’s and Q’s
which is to say
she is piecing and quilting
Quilt #3 of The 70273 Project.
I can’t wait.

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Margaret also writes that she’s planning a block-making party (or two),
and this seems a fine time to tell you about my latest idea
(even though it’s not 8/1 yet,
and I was trying to save it till then).
(It’s the Aquarian in me.)
(Or something.)

Anyway, listen . . .

Raise your hand if you’d like to do a quilt all by yourself
or with your family
or your club
or class
or neighbors
or colleagues.

Say you’re having a family reunion this fall,
for example,
and everybody makes a block or three
then you piece them and quilt them
and the quilt becomes
My Crazy Family Quilt.

Maybe your library hosts a block-making
party one afternoon
and you piece the blocks made
into a quilt that becomes
The Local [insert name] Library Quilt.

What if your class makes blocks
that are then pieced
and quilted
and becomes the
We Learn Together Quilt.

Individual block makers will be credited
as always,
and I’ll need Provenance forms from each Maker,
as always,
and we’ll need to set a minimum number of blocks,
but the overall quilt will be from
a specific group of people
who are connected in one way or another.

Think how much fun it will be when
your quilt comes to visit
for all to see.
(There will be refreshments, right?)
(But not anywhere near the quilt, though,
cause white just begs people to
come forth and stain.)
The quilt will be a forever part of The 70273 Project,
but we can arrange periodic exhibits and viewings as desired.

Oh, and how ’bout this:
everybody in your group could trace their hands,
and the outline of hands could become
quilting lines.

(This is the way my head works
pretty much all the time, y’all.
I have mapped out a new idea a month
for pretty much the next year. I can’t
wait to start revealing them on
the first of every month.)

If this appeals to you,
(the group quilt,
not my popcorn popper of a brain)
let’s talk.

And hey, Margaret Williams,
Thank You for being such a
prolific, vibrant, enthusiastic
member of The 70273 Project Tribe.

~~~~~~~

Want to sit beside Margaret and
become part of The 70273 Project Tribe?
Make blocks.
Join the Facebook group.
Like the Facebook page.
Subscribe to receive blog posts.

Week 23 in Review (July 18-24, 2016)

project_badge

Highlights of week 23 of The 70273 Project include:

Falls21Jul16

~ Storms. Lots of storms. Three days’ worth of storms that uprooted trees and flickered our electricity. And what does this have to do with The 70273 Project, you ask? Just wanted to explain in case you think, from my absence in social media, that I’ve packed up and left without leaving a forwarding address.

IOOL1.1CashiersLibraryIn Our Own Language 1:1

IOOL2CloseupFullFront1In Our Own Language 2

Apocrypha1bApocrypha 1

CashiersLibraryExhibit1L to R: In Our Own Language 16 and
In Our Own Language 3

ApocryphaPiecesCashiersLibrarySmaller pieces from the Apocrypha Series

CashiersLibraryExhibit2L to R: In Our Own Language 1, Quilt 1 of The 70273 Project,
and In Our Own Language 2

~ We held a block-making party at our local library in Cashiers, NC with some of the collaborative pieces Nancy and I created as backdrops.

~ Posted our first Monday Meditational Morsel on Facebook – good, positive thoughts to think on as we stitch. The idea comes from MJ Kinman who’s posted some brilliant pieces in the past. If you’d be willing to send a word or a story or a quote or some other kind of short morsel for us to take in and live out one week, please let me know, and I’ll assign you a Monday.

~ Tami Immel Draxler wrote a beautiful blog post about The 70273 Project. When you get a minute, please give it a read and leave her a comment so she’ll know you’ve been by. Thank you, Tami.

~ I’ve now heard from people in 77 different countries.

~ Thanks to envelopes from:

MJKinman21Jul16b

MJ Kinman

CarolynKatzoff21Jul16b

Carolyn Katzoff

Andy

The Engineer

SerenitySarahGinger1

and a host of Block Makers at The Cashiers Library

we close out the week with 2522 blocks in hand. Think we’ll make Kitty Sorgen’s goal of 3000 blocks in my hands by 9/5/2016? Yeah, I do, too.

As we roll into a new week, thank y’all for being part of The 70273 Project.

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