The 70273 Project

with a side of Jeanne Hewell-Chambers

Tag: 70273 exhibit (page 1 of 2)

Endings

It’s Sunday, 05 November 2017.
Nobody applauds when the announcer declares the 2017 International Quilt Festival over.

Queen Becky gives us a lesson in how to fold the quilts,
how to roll and twist the tissue paper,
and where to place it to prevent creases when the quilts are folded.
She is an excellent teacher from whom I learn an awful lot.

The quilts and all who had a hand in creating them are treated with respect.
A clean sheet is placed between the quilts and the floor,

and everyone who touches the quilts wears clean, white gloves.

Sean and David Rusidill (Caroline’s amazingly polite and fun to be with sons), Judy Jochen,
and Shannon Timberlake join in the take down and store effort.

The Engineer (Andy) takes quilts off the walls, and
Linda Moore and Peggy Thomas (sisters) fold and box quilts as they come down.

Caroline Rudisill checks quilts off the inventory list

as they go into the boxes.

It would not have happened with out Peggy Thomas

and Tari Vickery,
both seen here in The 70273 Project Interactive Booth
where people took home 1000 block kits,
left financial donations, and made Friendship Blocks.

Peggy Thomas and Tari Vickery (The 70273 Project Ambassadors)
– what would I . . . what would The 70273 Project . . . do without them?

Mary Green, Ambassador for The 70273 Project
(seen here in front of her beautiful Middling made with beads)
worked in the Interactive Booth, as did . . .

Cindy Cavallo, Ambassador

Caroline Rudisill, Ambassador

Frances Alford, Ambassador
and folks whose photos must be on somebody else’s phone:
Elaine Smith, Ambassador
Linda Moore, Ambassador
Judy Jochen, Ambassador,
Shannon Timberlake.

Thank you all for making the effort not just to get to the Festival,
but to share your time with The 70273 Project. I am grateful beyond description.

Thank you to Queen Becky, who hung The 70273 Project quilts
in the Special Exhibit, making us look so good . . .

to Rose (she teaches special education) who helped hang quilts in the Interactive Booth . . .

to Becky who, because of health issues, wasn’t able to be at the Festival,
but for months and months before the Festival,  donned her best patience and wit
to guide me through the process,
even taking the time to call me on the phone
with the good news that The 70273 Project had been selected
as a Special Exhibit when she could’ve just sent an email.

to Deann who was on-site, always calm and patient and thorough in her answers and instructions,

to Terri, whose laugh never faded throughout the entire five days

to the people back home who assembled The Go Block Bags
(all 1000 bags were taken!) . . .

 to all y’all who weren’t there in person,
but were most definitely there in spirit – sharing posts,
telling others, sending encouraging, appreciative message, emails, and comments –

and to The Engineer . . .  Andy
the man who has unwaveringly honored
our vision and vow of togetherness
for 44 years now . . .

THANK YOU.

It definitely takes a village, and we have a village made of the  kindest,
most compassionate, smiling, big-hearted people I ever dreamed existed.


All good things must come to an end, and the International Quilt Festival is no exception.
Looking at the photos of empty walls now, I see visual foreshadowing . . .

We get home and take our elder Corgi Phoebe up the mountain on Wednesday,
cooking all her favorite foods and putting them in front of her,
sitting on the floor with her, petting her, talking to her, loving her.
She wants to go outside every 2 minutes or so as though she can’t make up her mind.
She stands over her water bowl as though it’s familiar,
but she’s forgotten what she’s supposed to do with it.

A business trip on Thursday, and on Friday, it’s time to make The Hard Decision.

As we wait on Jeff (our vet, friend, and well, extended family member),
a man comes in and walks right over to Phoebe who would ordinarily
be glad to see him because she has always known that everybody wants to pet her.
This man does want to pet her,
but today Phoebe doesn’t even raise her head
or look up at him.

We are ushered not into the usual exam room,
but into a more spacious room with colorful padded chairs.
There’s even a doggie bed . . . pink.
I know why we are here
– shoot, I’m the one who called Jeff and told him why we wanted to come –
and yet I am unable to let go of the hope,
that Jeff will enter to announce that an IV of fluids
and maybe 2 weeks of antibiotics and our Phoebe will be good as new.

That’s not what happens.

I sit on the floor with Phoebe.
She stands near the door,
and I ask her to move
for fear someone will smack her hard
when they don’t see her standing there.

She makes laps around the room,
walking in circles that take her
in front of the examining table,
in front of Andy,
in front of me,
then back by the examining table.
Around and around and around she goes.
Mindlessly.
Endlessly.

Jeff takes her out to put the catheter in,
and when he brings her back,
she’s content to lay on the bed she’s been avoiding.

We all sit on the floor now.
As Jeff administers the sedative/anti-anxiety drug,
I tell stories that start with “Remember when . . . “.

As Jeff administers the narcotic,
we each lay a hand on Phoebe
and send steady streams of love to her
through our touch.

The precious four-legged soul called Phoebe
who gifted us with her presence
breathes her last breath
to the sound of laughter and love.

From the high of the Special Exhibit at IQF
to the lows of witnessing the life of a member of our family come to a close,
life is a roller coaster, and we have been in the front seat.

Day 3 of the International Quilt Festival

As I write this, I am feeling sad that today is the last day. Yesterday was another remarkable, indescribably astonishing and magical day with so many people coming back to the booth to be with the quilts or to talk some more. Many people came back, bringing others they wanted to show it to. There’s just too much to tell you right now because I am hoping to get this posted in time to have breakfast and a shower today (something that hasn’t happened since Wednesday!). I also want to get back to the convention center and have time to be with the quilts myself as today at 4, we will lovingly take them down and send them to their next destination. I have so much to tell y’all, but for now, some photos from yesterday. There were people . . .

At The 70273 Project Interactive Booth in the 100 Aisle, things are constantly bustling as people make Friendship Blocks using markers on fabric and the handy-dandy template Elaine Smith created. Many bouquets of thanks to those who volunteered at the IAB over the course of the Festival: Peggy Thomas, Tari Vickery, Linda Moore, Caroline Rudisill, Elaine Smith, Judy Jochen, Shannon Timberlake, Frances Alford, Cindy Cavallo, and Mary Green. Visitors can make Friendship Blocks and/or take a Go Bag filled with everything you need (except scissors and a needle) to make a small block. All blocks made at the Festival will go into a special Festival 2017 quilt, and of course, each pair of red X’s commemorates one life.

These two treasures – Tari Vickery and Peggy Thomas – have been here every minute of every day. The Engineer and I could not have done it without them. Yesterday they came over to the Special Exhibit to help talk to people – yes, it kept 5 of us busy because there were that many visitors!

I finally got to meet Caroline Rudisill in person! She split her time between the Interactive Booth and the Special Exhibit, and today she’s bringing her two boys to help with set strike.

And oh my goodness, what on earth would I do without The Engineer (who’s called Andy behind the scenes). He hasn’t sat down a single time since we’ve been here. There are always people,
so he’s always telling them about The 70273 Project.

Catherine Bonte, President of the French Patchwork Guild, came by. We looked at all the French quilts (there are many that were also exhibited in Lacaze, France in June of this year). Here we are in front of a quilt that was pieced by Katell Renon. I have a story to tell you about this, but no time now, except to say that when I mentioned my friend Chantal who is gathering blocks for us in France, Catherine knew I meant Chantal Baquin without me having to mangle her last name. (I get very self-conscious when speaking French to people from France! They pronounce the words so melodiously. I don’t.) If you live in France and have blocks to send, please contact Chantal Baquin for her mailing address. Catherine and I share a hope that One Day, all – as in every single one – of The 70273 Project quilts will be exhibited somewhere in France.

Now y’all, I tell you what: I don’t let dogs lick me (especially on the face) ’cause I know where their mouth has been. But Neely, the seeing eye dog? He’s different. With his owner’s permission,
I let him lick me till he didn’t have any saliva left to lick me with.

Emma from the Quilt Alliance came by to do a quick 3-minute interview about the project.

And there were quilts. These are just a few of them, of course. Over the next several weeks, I’ll be profiling each quilt individually with stories and names of all who had a hand in creating them.

Quilt 185

Quilt 113

Quilt 111

Quilt 78

Quilt 76

Quilt 75

Quilt 70

Quilt 60

Quilt 54

Quilt 45

Quilt 28

Quilt 23

Walls of The 70273 Project Special Exhibit

And that’s not all! This morning I received these photos . . .

From Uta Lenk, the German Ambassador for The 70273 Project, this photo of 80 commemorations made in Germany, now on their way to be pieced and quilted.

And from Lucy Horner, a 70273 Project Ambassador in the U.K., this photo showing quilts being made that will fill Rochester Cathedral in January 2018. More about that soon.

With that, I’m off to go commune with the quilts before the doors open. Being at the International Quilt Festival is a phenomenal, amazing, magical opportunity and experience. Thank y’all for letting me be the steward for The 70273 Project.

~~~~~~~

Other places to gather around The 70273 Project water cooler:

Shop with Amazon Smile and support The 70273 Project.

Subscribe to the blog (where all information is shared).

Join the English-speaking Facebook group – our e-campfire – where you can talk to other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Join the French-speaking Facebook group – our other e-campfire – where you can chat with other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Like the Facebook page where you can check in for frequent updates.

Get folks to help celebrate your birthday by making blocks and/or donating bucks.

Follow the pinterest board for visual information.

Post using #the70273project on Instagram. (Please tag me, too, @whollyjeanne, so I don’t miss anything.)

Tell your friends what you want for your birthday.

And if you haven’t yet made some blocks, perhaps you’d like to put some cloth in your hands and join us.

Or maybe you’d like to gather friends and family, colleagues or students, club or guild members, etc. together and make a group quilt.

Day 2 of the International Quilt Festival

The line is even bigger today, though there’s a Celebration Parade for the Houston Astros right outside our doors in just a few hours. Here are a few of the most amazing people I had the honor to met today. Wish I could had taken photos of every single one of them.

Tari Vickery and Peggy Thomas sure don’t look as tired as I’m sure they are. They’re in charge of The 70273 Project interactive booth where people are making blocks.

Susan Wynne and Elaine Smith came by. Elaine is also helping in the Interactive Booth, where she has one of the Middlings she’s made on display.

Sue Warby from the UK offered to be a 70273 Project Ambassador!

Stephanie Brown Bowen is a hoot and a holler. She’s also an angel who swooped back through the booth later in the day and quietly handed me a bottle of water as I talked to other people about The 70273 Project. Last night, she joined our Facebook Campfire, which I’m means our chats are about to get livelier!

Sheila Bishop and Tori Benz-Hillstrom are friends with our Kitty Sorgen and Kris Phillips (who pieced the quilt we’re standing in front of) and Trish Lehman and so many more members of The 70273 Project Tribe!

I finally got to meet the delightful and talented Nan Ryan live and in person! She lives in a community where my in-laws lived for many years before they died, and she found out about The 70273 Project in an interesting round-about kind of way and jumped right on it. I was going down to meet her a month or so ago, but Hurricane Irma was a party pooper.

Kathleen Kashmire from Eureka, California made blocks in the Interactive Booth.

Lois-Scheiter dropped off a block and a donation (Thank you, Lois!) then happened back through several times to bolster me with her bright smile and blown kisses.

Helen Jordan is a polio survivor from Glasgow, Scotland.

Andra Steemkamp from Nambia stopped by to learn more about The 70273 Project, so maybe we’ll soon have our first blocks from Africa.

Meg Cox was one of the first people I met yesterday, and she is a real dynamo. I enjoyed talking to her as much as I enjoyed looking at her jacket.

Jacqueline Bonner stopped us on the way in to say how powerful she found The 70273 Project Exhibit. Her ex mother-in-law was going to teach her to quilt, but Jacqueline didn’t want to learn then. She got ready to learn, but only after her mother-in-law died. Jacqueline’s grandmother made quilt and clothes by hand.

This is Marie Ange (center) and her friend. Marie Ange is from France and she hopes to meet Chantal Baquin and maybe Katell Renon when she’s there next week.

Christine Treweck owns the Delbrook Quilt Company in New Zealand. Her daughter died at age 5 from disabilities she sustained as a result of an infection she contracted. I so enjoyed meeting her daughter through Christine’s stories – and there were more smiles and chuckles than tears because her daughter’s joy shown right through the stories – like how her daughter would blow kisses and sign “I love you” to the person who performed painful medical procedures on her as she left the room.

Meet Cheryl Johnston and Jan Tarbox.

Anabel  Ebersol made some of the wind chimes that are exquisitely hung just in front of The 70273 Project Special Exhibit. Very appropriate, don’t you think? Kudos to Festival Special Exhibit organizers and planners.

Hilary Jordan, Barbara Tyo, and Melinda Ashby were in the exhibit when I arrived (I got there early, they got there earlier.) Hilary sells Aurafil thread. Just sayin’. Just hopin’.

The Engineer (Andy) is a real trooper, y’all. I am so lucky to have a husband who wholeheartedly supports The 70273 Project in every way imaginable. Yesterday, we fell into a pattern (not by design) where he would tell people the story about The 70273 Project then they would come tell me their stories. It made for an amazing day.

For The 70273 Project to be a Special Exhibit at the International Quilt Festival is an honor, y’all, and I am humbled and fueled by the conversations I have, the love notes that people leave me on our table, by the stories folks share with me. The Engineer and I haven’t left the booth once because every single minute someone is there, and we don’t want to miss a single person. To all y’all who have come by or will come by, to all y’all who are sending good energy from far away, thank you.

~~~~~~~

Other places to gather around The 70273 Project water cooler:

Shop with Amazon Smile and support The 70273 Project.

Subscribe to the blog (where all information is shared).

Join the English-speaking Facebook group – our e-campfire – where you can talk to other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Join the French-speaking Facebook group – our other e-campfire – where you can chat with other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Like the Facebook page where you can check in for frequent updates.

Get folks to help celebrate your birthday by making blocks and/or donating bucks.

Follow the pinterest board for visual information.

Post using #the70273project on Instagram. (Please tag me, too, @whollyjeanne, so I don’t miss anything.)

Tell your friends what you want for your birthday.

And if you haven’t yet made some blocks, perhaps you’d like to put some cloth in your hands and join us.

Or maybe you’d like to gather friends and family, colleagues or students, club or guild members, etc. together and make a group quilt.

 

Day 1 of the International Quilt Festival

As we cruise to the front of the massive line (to give us time to get ready to greet our visitors) waiting to gain entry to Day One of the International Quilt Festival, a security guard stops me to say, “I love your project. It is the most meaningful project here for me because my dad was a pilot in World War II and spent years in a German prison camp.”

As we get to our Special Exhibits, in comes a text from our son telling me that he’s thinking of me and loves me along with a text from our daughter saying I’m proud of you and love you. Always a grand way to start a day. 

The next person I see is Day Brightener Kathee Colman, whom you met yesterday when she stopped by with Patricia A. Montgomery. Kathee gives me my start-the-day-off hug and checked by throughout the day to give hugs of support and encouragement and offer to fetch  me water. From here, my day is filled with stories and hugs and smiles and tears from the likes of . . .

Libby Wares and Peggy Conklin from Florida (I met them when I presented
The 70273 Project to the Orlando Modern Quilt Guild last July.

Cindy Cavallo (We’re standing in front of her gorgeous Middling that’s hanging in the Special Exhibit.) An active member of The 70273 Project Tribe,
Cindy also spent the day at the project’s interactive booth.

Sharron Evans

Rose

Patty Spiller

Jennifer (daughter), Susan (mother), and Belinda (daughter).
Susan works with people like Nancy who lives in group homes.
Jennifer promises to take The 70273 Project
back to her school’s art design classes.

Jennifer (niece) and Jan (aunt) – my Bathroom Girls, I call them because when I  exited the bathroom, they were waiting on me. “I saw you go in,” Jennifer said, ” and I told Jan, ‘There’s the two red X woman.’ We are captivated by what we’ve read,
and we want to know more about the project.” Of course I told them about it, and true to their word, they stopped by later for a visit with the quilts and me.

And there were the most delightful fifth grade students and teachers who came by to view the quilts and ask projects. They’re from the Pearland, TX Independent School District, and I’m very excited that they want the students to Skype with me later AND they’re going to incorporate The 70273 Project into their curriculum. It’s something they apparently do every year – have the students research something then quilt it. The students were engaged, asked the most thoughtful questions, and showed keen observation skills.
It was a little spot of heaven as I stood there talking to them, remembering
why I so enjoyed teaching fourth graders.
I’m looking forward to hearing from and talking with them more.

Quilting Rock Star Bonnie Bobman came by, and oh the outside-the-box talk we did have.

While Bonnie and I were talking, Quilter Rock Star Pauling Salzman happened by for a chat.

Meet Gilda Hamilton and 2017 IQA Award Winner Pat Connally.

All the while The Engineer and I talk with hundreds and hundreds of people in the Special Exhibit, Peggy Thomas, Cindy Cavallo, and Tari Vickery woman our Interactive Booth in aisle 100, telling more people about the project and inviting them to make Friendship Blocks that Cindy has graciously offered to turn into a Festival 2017 quilt.

Visitors commemorate.

“For the sensitivity and the love
For the memory and the knowledge
For all with two
Whoever was taken and whoever lives”

The lovely Evy Styliara penned these words in Greek in her friendship block.
More tears.

Right next door to the interactive booth, Siege Leland with
the Houston Quilt Guild teaches people how to Quilt and quilt with a purpose.

And that’s not all. Across The Pond, Wendy Daws and members of the Kent Association for the Blind and their guide dogs are making tactile blocks and quilts that will fill Rochester Cathedral come January. Photos sent by Wendy and taken by LadyBird Day.

Peggy, The Engineer, and I close out this magical day with our one meal of the day and stories. Y’all know I’m an optimist if I wear all white and drink chocolate martinis, right?

So many stories to tuck away in my heart. So much heartspeak (my name for tears). So much goodness and wonder and compassion and kindness is happening here, y’all. I didn’t get a photo of Robin Moore, but remind me to tell you that story one day because she is a treasure. And there’s so many more that I didn’t get photos of – just know that you’re now permanently a part of my heart, and I look forward to hearing from you as you become part of The 70273 Project Tribe. This is an amazing experience, y’all. There are no words, except Thank you.

~~~~~~~

Other places to gather around The 70273 Project water cooler:

Shop with Amazon Smile and support The 70273 Project.

Subscribe to the blog (where all information is shared).

Join the English-speaking Facebook group – our e-campfire – where you can talk to other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Join the French-speaking Facebook group – our other e-campfire – where you can chat with other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Like the Facebook page where you can check in for frequent updates.

Get folks to help celebrate your birthday by making blocks and/or donating bucks.

Follow the pinterest board for visual information.

Post using #the70273project on Instagram. (Please tag me, too, @whollyjeanne, so I don’t miss anything.)

Tell your friends what you want for your birthday.

And if you haven’t yet made some blocks, perhaps you’d like to put some cloth in your hands and join us.

Or maybe you’d like to gather friends and family, colleagues or students, club or guild members, etc. together and make a group quilt.

The Morning After Preview Day of the International Quilt Festival

I told you I’d post every night –  I lied – that was the promise of a woman who’s a virgin who’s at the International Quilt Festival for the first time. So we’ll shift into Plan B where I post the morning after.

“You’re the two red X woman,” she says. “I want to know how you came up with the idea.” This is how the day started, and this is Jeanne with Queen Becky. She hung our exhibit – she made us look GOOD.

I overhear her say, “I’m Sherri Lipman McCauley, and I’m here to work at the SAQA booth.”
“Hey, Sherri of SAQA,” I said from across the way. “I’m Jeanne Hewell-Chambers, and I’m a member of SAQA, too. Thank you for being here to keep he booth open.”

“OH, you’re the two red X woman,” she rather exclaimed as she spies my name tag.  After that there are hugs and tears and stories. When she was 12 years old, she and her sister babysat for a man who had numbers printed on his wrist.  “Don’t you ever ask him about those number,” her mother admonished them before they went on their first babysitting gig.” Now she knows why.

 

Andy, Peggy Thomas, and I work to set up The 70273 Project Interactive Booth #150. The Engineer prepares the thread caddies we’ll be selling to raise money for the project. Each thread caddie is designed and handmade by the talented wood artist Heather Muse, and a generous 40% of the proceeds benefit The 70273 Project. I’ll be posting an order form as soon as I have a minute. Till then, you can just message me and let me know to hold one for you. And if you have an idea of something we could sell or do as a fundraiser, let me know that, too.

Queen Becky, Rose Williams, and Peggy hang quilts in The 70273 Project Interactive Booth #150. Queen Becky and Rose (who taught special ed) marvel at the different pairs of red X’s in the quilt made by members of Kitty Sorgen’s family.

Positively Peggy Thomas in The 70273 Project Interactive Booth #150.

Booth #150. None of us has ever been to Festival before, and while we may not know what we’re doing and how to best represent The 70273 Project, we know where our hearts are, and we let them guide us.

The equally effervescent Tari Vickery arrives in the afternoon, and soon after, we whisk her away to see the Special Exhibit. Here we see her standing in front of a Middling made by Katell Renon.

Early in the project, Robin Woods sent not just blocks but a handwritten note about potential marketing avenues, and finally we meet in person. What a treat, a delight, a font of helpful information she is!

I meet these two fun, charming women before I had the good and useful idea to snap photos of name tags. If you see yourself here, please let me know your names.

It takes a while before Ricka Neuman and I can talk through the tears.

Meet Beth Conlin and Kendra Carroll, Quilt Angels extraordinare. “We want to get up close to the quilt,” they told me, “and touch it because WE CAN.”
I am so grateful to have them close by.

Oh my goodness the conversation Lynea from Utah, Sharon from Calgary, and I enjoy. Sharon has a long, full career of working with people with all sorts of special needs, and it’s obvious that she loves what she does. I hope that families who get to work with her how lucky they are. When I tell them about Nancy, Lynea (whose mother took the name from a steamy French novel she was reading at the time) walked away, and when she comes back, she has tears streaming down her face. Turns out she, too, has a sister named Nancy who is also 57 years old and who has mental development issues.

Gloria, seen here in the red shirt, looks at the Middling made by Chantal Trouillot, sees the tiny scroll curled up in the upper righthand corner, and says, “That makes me think of the Torah.” So many people see something in these quilts that I’d never considered. I’ll tell you later.

Sandy (white shirt) is married to Bill who, as a result of contracting polio when he was 18 years old, is paralyzed from the waist down. Doctors told him he would never walk again, but he taught himself how. “He walked with a stiff gate, but he walked,” Sandy tells me, “until he fell so many times that he stretched out something.” And not only did Bill walk, he is a true – as in I’m not kidding – rocket scientist. “He’s brilliant,” Lois tells me, “absolutely brilliant.” Sandy made this astonishing quilt that hands in the booth behind and Lois (from Alabama) quilted it.

Sue Harrison, who lives in Durham, Kent, UK, came by and I show her the Middling (top) made by Margaret Jackson, who’s an Ambassador for The 70273 Project in – say it with me – Durham, Kent, UK.

“I sent blocks in, and she wrote me a thank you note,” Bunnie Jordan of Virginia tells her friends. “Yeah, well, I’m a wee little bit behind on my thank you note writing,” I tell them.

When Patricia A. Montgomery and Kathee Colman come by, they tell me they read about The 70273 Project and were determined to see it tonight. “Thank you,” they each said as they hugged me. When I find out that Patricia (left) made the spectacular Civil Rights coats that are on display, I spontaneously hug her and say, “Thank you.”

Michelle was our last visitor on this glorious night. She says that when her friend, Frances Alford, told her about The 70273 Project, she made sure she got over to see it on the first night. Less than a moment after this picture was snapped, tears flowed from our four eyes. I didn’t get your last name, Michelle, so perhaps you and/or Frances will let me know?

Thank you to all who stop by to share your stories and your reactions. It is an emotional night, with many good tears being shed. Tears of joy and gratitude and compassion. I met so many kind, creative people tonight – my heart swells even more.
It is a night I’ll never, ever forget.

Peggy, The Engineer, and I enjoy a pizza and a drink afterwards as we swap stories and bask in the afterglow of a night well spent and much enjoyed.

As we walk back to the hotel, we find ourselves totally caught up in the celebration of the Houston Astros winning the World Series. There was much whooping and hollering and horns honking – even from me (well, not the horn part) – and I wrote baseball off umpteen years ago when the Atlanta Braves players decided multi-million dollar salaries weren’t enough for them and went on strike without giving a nanosecond thought about the people who depend on the considerably smaller amounts of money they make selling hot dogs and beer and cleaning up after games. That wasn’t forgotten, but the celebratory joy was, indeed, infectious.

~~~~~~~

Other places to gather around The 70273 Project water cooler:

Shop with Amazon Smile and support The 70273 Project.

Subscribe to the blog (where all information is shared).

Join the English-speaking Facebook group – our e-campfire – where you can talk to other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Join the French-speaking Facebook group – our other e-campfire – where you can chat with other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Like the Facebook page where you can check in for frequent updates.

Get folks to help celebrate your birthday by making blocks and/or donating bucks.

Follow the pinterest board for visual information.

Post using #the70273project on Instagram. (Please tag me, too, @whollyjeanne, so I don’t miss anything.)

Tell your friends what you want for your birthday.

And if you haven’t yet made some blocks, perhaps you’d like to put some cloth in your hands and join us.

Or maybe you’d like to gather friends and family, colleagues or students, club or guild members, etc. together and make a group quilt.

International Quilt Festival 2017, Get Ready Days 1 and 2

The annual International Quilt Festival held in Houston, TX is mecca for quilters and cloth enthusiasts. It has long been my dream to attend, and this year I am here with The Engineer and many others I’ll tell you about as the week goes on, to give voice to The 70273 Project Special Exhibit of quilts. Such an honor to be selected.

 

When it was time to pack up the quilts after the First Major European Exhibit in Lacaze, France last June, Katell Renon gave us this purple suitcase that is now part of The 70273 Project Fleet. Were I to decorate it with bumper stickers from all the places it’s been since arriving on US soil, you wouldn’t be able to see the purple, so thank you again, Katell!

We flew into Houston yesterday, dropped our bags, and trekked right on over to the convention center where we had the delightful pleasure of meeting Terri Winsauer, and Deann Shamuyarira live and in person.  These two and Becky Navarro are My Dream Team. I know they must be frazzled and exhausted, and yet I have never seen them in anything other than a smile, and oh the patience!

 

 

 

The Festival Special Exhibits Dream Team did an amazing, astonishing, outstanding job designing and hanging our exhibit. And it’s so big! There are 4 long walls, one short wall, and two end walls where two long walls come together.

Frances Alford happened by, and what fun it was to meet her live and in person. She’s every bit as effervescent in person as she is on Facebook. Frances has a beautiful quilt on display at Festival, a self portrait. Click on the link to see it as her profile photo. For some reason, the hotel’s internet won’t let me transfer the photo from my phone to the computer, and my blogging software won’t accept the saved image from her fb profile, so yeah. Just click over and have a look.

I got to meet the amazingly productive and fun Desiree Habicht, her husband Randy, their daughter Jen, and Jen’s service dog, Chloe. What fun! If you’re reading this and will be at Festival, be sure to find Desiree in her vendor’s booth and maybe treat yourself to a few things.

And tonight Peggy Thomas, The 70273 Project Chief of Nectar, arrived!

I’ll leave you with some bird’s eye view photos The Engineer took of The 70273 Project Special Exhibit and a promise to post every night about the day’s happenings and profile quilts in the exhibit, so y’all come back now, ya’ hear?

~~~~~~~

Other places to gather around The 70273 Project water cooler:

Shop with Amazon Smile and support The 70273 Project.

Subscribe to the blog (where all information is shared).

Join the English-speaking Facebook group – our e-campfire – where you can talk to other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Join the French-speaking Facebook group – our other e-campfire – where you can chat with other members of The 70273 Project Tribe.

Like the Facebook page where you can check in for frequent updates.

Get folks to help celebrate your birthday by making blocks and/or donating bucks.

Follow the pinterest board for visual information.

Post using #the70273project on Instagram. (Please tag me, too, @whollyjeanne, so I don’t miss anything.)

Tell your friends what you want for your birthday.

And if you haven’t yet made some blocks, perhaps you’d like to put some cloth in your hands and join us.

Or maybe you’d like to gather friends and family, colleagues or students, club or guild members, etc. together and make a group quilt.

The Quilts at Lacaze Speak Quietly

Andy – The Engineer – created this video minutes after the doors opened. The only sound was the exquisitely appropriate music Cecile Milhau chose for the occasion.  Watch it when you can shut the door on the world for about 2 minutes. Let them speak to you, let them sing you a lullaby. Feel it.

Lacaze, Here We Come

Sunday morning
25 juin 2017
8:30 a.m.

Katell picks us up at our hotel in Albi, France and off we go to Lacaze with Katell behind the wheel and Kristine navigating.

The air is cool

the sun is shining

and the scenery is exquisite.

About an hour later, we round the curve

and we are at Lacaze, greeted with our country’s flag


and a sign to let us and others who will come later
know we are at the right place.



There are tears
at this first hint of the hospitality to come.

~~~~~~~

I will be writing the only way I can right now: in blurts, snippets, and bits – we’ll call them postcards, why don’t we –  that won’t necessarily be presented in chronological order, but as they rise to the surface of my heart. Which means you’ll receive these postcards all out of order, just as if I put a stamp on them and sent them through the postal service. That is how I will tell you about the first major European exhibit in Lacaze, France.

Now if you’d like to know more about The 70273 Project and help commemorate these people who deserved to live, here are some links you might be interested in:
~ making blocks
~ registering quilts
~ making middlings

And if you’d like to read the other postcards from this magical trip, here’s a road map for you:
Under Two Flags

Paris, Day One

Paris Day Two

Toulouse

Paris Again

More Kindness in Paris

“I drive you from airport. It is not much. This is how I contribute to this projet magnifique.”

They speak to each other in rapid-fire French. I can’t even pick out an “une” or a “du” or a “oui” – Chantal Baquin and the landlord to the flat we rent in Paris – so I give up trying and just stand there smiling, nodding when they look at me, hoping that’s appropriate. Suddenly the landlord’s face registers something – what? Surprise? Shock? She rubs each arm with the hand on the other arm and continues looking at me. Her eyes fill with tears. Chantal tells us that she’s just told the landlord why we are in France – for the Lacaze exhibit of The 70273 Project – and the landlord says she gets goosebumps and is very grateful for what we are doing.

They resume talking, and this time the landlord says she is so moved, she is doing something she’s never, ever done before: she insists that she will pick us up at the airport in Orly when we fly back to Paris after the exhibit. We thank her, never thinking about how we will be on our own – no Chantal with us to read and speak for us – trying to find her. We are blissfully stupid about this.

On Monday, the day after the exhibit, we arrive at the airport in Orly a few minutes late, fetch our bags, and head to the 10-minute parking lot – something we know to do because the thoughtful landlord called Chantal the night before and gave her instructions, except she didn’t mention where we find this 10-minute parking lot, and of course we didn’t think to ask till this very minute. I count aloud to ten in French – the only way I know to remember the word for the number ten – then scan signs in search of the word. Not seeing it anywhere, I do the only thing I know to do: I stand in the middle of the sidewalk and turn around and around with my mouth open while my face registers worry. Sure enough, before I complete the second turn, a man stops to ask if he can help us. He’s speaking in French, but I’m sure that’s what he asked. Yes, I’m very sure.

“Dix,” I say to him and hold up 10 fingers because I don’t trust my French, being only 4% fluent according to Duo Lingo.

Through hand gestures, he indicates we must re-enter the airport, walk to the other end, exit the airport, and walk around to the left where we will (eventually) find the 10-minute parking. “Merci beaucoup,” I tell him, and when he smiles, I do a little hop, so excited I am that he understood me.

At least, that’s the way I chose to interpret his smile. It could be my accent. I’m told I  have one.

Though I feel no panic like I think I should, I have no idea what we will do if Madame Landlord has already come and gone – which surely she has because it’s been more than 10 minutes after we asked Chantal to tell her we would be there. We are outside again on the other side of the terminal. I see the word “dix”, and I’m not sure if I’m happier that my French was correct or that we are finally in the right place. I stay with the bags and send Andy to find a car . . . oh no. We have no idea what kind or color car Mme. Landlord drives. There’s nothing to do but move forward, so I stay with the suitcases and tell Andy to go look for the landlord’s face. He is about 20 steps away, when she pulls up to the curb, leaps from her car, and runs towards us. She is sorry she is late and made us wait. I assure her we just got there ourselves. At least that’s what I meant to say. What actually came out of my mouth could be something totally different.

She had water and cups bearing a mid-century plaid. So thoughtful. Such hospitality.

She has a big bottle of water for us in the car, with the cutest paper cups (bearing my favorite mid-century plaid) I’ve ever seen. I am so touched by her hospitality, I surreptitiously save the cup.

She opens the sunroof so we can see better, and I have to tell you it is the most fabulous sunroof I’ve ever seen.

The Paris sky isn’t bad either.

She tells us of things we are passing, giving us a personalized tour. When she gets to The Bee Hotel, she is concerned that we didn’t understand about the bees that were raised on a floor of the hotel, so what does she do? She dials Chantal to ask for the words in English. Yes, she’s that thoughtful.

pairs of X’s everywhere

We get back to the flat, and Madame Landlord insists on helping us get our luggage into the flat. Once that’s done, we thank her again, to which she puts her hand up and tells us through tears, that she is quite moved by The 70273 Project, and picking us up at the airport will be her small contribution to this projet magnifique.

~~~~~~~

Because:
~ we had only one night between arriving home from France and flying to Florida to visit Nancy,
~ we had no internet in Florida,
~ we got home from Florida and left to come to Georgia where we have been working long hours every day,
~ I am still overwhelmed with thoughts, memories, and emotions from the trip to France,
~ there is so much to tell,
~ I am still processing it all
~ and receiving photos,
I will be writing the only way I can right now: in blurts, snippets, and bits – we’ll call them postcards, why don’t we –  that won’t be presented in chronological order, but as they rise to the surface of my heart. Which means you’ll receive these postcards all out of order, just as if I put a stamp on them and sent them through the postal service. That is how I will tell you about the first major European exhibit in Lacaze, France.

Now if you’d like to know more about The 70273 Project and help commemorate these people who deserved to live, here are some links you might be interested in:
~ making blocks
~ registering quilts
~ making middlings

Day Three in France: Toulouse

23 June 2017
Friday

You know when you are greeted with . . .

Tari Vickery and Katell Renon


a carousel

a statue listening intently to a bird,

and a dog so tired from playing that he went to sleep with the ball in his mouth.
(That, or the area is known for its dog-on-dog crime.)
it’s gonna be a day filled with fun and love.
And it is.
It really, really is.

Perhaps it’s because we’re two sleeps away
from The 70273 Project Exhibit at Lacaze, France,
that I spy pairs of X’s throughout Toulouse.

 

(I’ve fallen head over heels in love with Toulouse blue!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glass panels

at the Orly airport

and light through my upside down glass
that made me think of Nancy’s drawings.

There is a sewing shop

the courthouse where Katell and Patrick were wed,

bicycles that made me smile

shades of blue that come with history and story
(I don’t know why the photo is wonky.
Just turn your head or your computer screen
cause I’ve wrestled with it long enough.
I need to go to bed!)

 

and real windows and painted windows on the same home
that make me think how some people behave.

And hearts. Oh my goodness, there are hearts everywhere in Toulouse.

on the sidewalk

and  in patches of moss.

There are hearts that, if you look at them one way,
might resemble roosters

There are teapot hearts that short and stout,
with feet and handles of love
and spew love out into the world through their spout.

And as we head to the parking lot, I spy this tote bag.

Then we close out the day
at the beautiful, comfortable, welcoming home
of Katell and Patrick Renon.
I am one lucky, grateful woman.
Oh yes, yes I am.

I’m also a woman who’s a day behind with posts
because the days are full here
and when night comes, I fall asleep before I hit the bed.
There will be more photos of Paris and Toulouse on
Instagram if you’re interested,
and I promise to do my best to catch up tomorrow,
even though tomorrow is a Very Big Day, you know.

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