Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A lot to be grateful for

This last week has been very stressful and because of that it took awhile for me to see the love surrounding me. One week ago my daughter and I were about 100 miles away from home and headed for the airport. The plan was to fly to Orlando where Kelly was attending a national writing conference and me, well during the day I was going to Disney World! We were to join up in the evenings and see more of the park, but more than that these trips have turned into a way to solidify our wonderful friendship. However, things happen and about 1oo miles from home I received the phone call everyone with a spouse hopes never to hear. My husband called to say that he was having another "incident." Another stroke. He called our son-in-law, John, and John gathered up his granddaughter and drove Dale to the hospital.

Dale walked into the emergency room and was admitted to the hospital. Two and a half days later the stroke finally played itself out at around three o'clock Friday afternoon. He was left dazed and with no ability to to move his left arm or leg. He has been improving slowly and today was his first day in rehab. This is a program at St John's hospital in Springfield. Rehab on the second floor is beyond rigorous with at least three hours of therapy everyday. By the middle of the afternoon he was exhausted, but he was wheeled down to the dining room to have his first meal sitting at a table. This evening he asked to be helped into a wheel chair so he could go for a ride and be found sitting up and out of bed by granddaughters and a great granddaughter! he was a different man. I cannot say enough about this program or about my husband. He has been poked and prodded, he has been awakened dozens of times by nurses, aides, kitchen staff, lab people, and he always says thank you, every time.

My family here has really stepped up. I am not sure I could have survived without them. Visits of grandchildren, support from daughter and her husband, and more friends literally than I can count. A half dozen friends from CA, four from Indiana, my TAS group, neighbors and all the friends Dale has made on his morning coffee days at Starbucks or Paneras and a whole quilt guild, several hundred strong, amazing. For now, I am covered. So thank you all for caring enough to offer help. I may take you up on it sometime, but for now, I am okay. The days are incredibly full. I hope to see my husband recover. At one point I had to remind him that he is my life and my love. Almost fifty years and we know each other so well, he would say too well.

My thanks to all of you who worry about me. I am blessed. If, when I need help, I will ask.

Monday, November 15, 2010

It appears that "Anonymous Is a Woman" is live and Well

I am back at least for today. Life is busy with Doctor appointments and trying to keep up with the dying garden. It is almost winter here in the mid-west. We have had a beautiful fall in terms of color and even temperatures though while I was in Houston for quilt festival there was a night when those temps went down to 22*. What's with that? I would share the pictures from my back porch, as well as pictures of some of my favorite festival quilts, however my camera and my computer are not speaking. So, I will have to get a card reader. I do have some beautiful pictures of incredibly beautiful quilts.

Okay, I have procrastinated enough. First of all I had a wonderful time at festival made possible by my daughter Kelly and her husband John, along with my husband who was adamant that I go. Some of you may be aware of a project promoted by Elly Sienkiewicz. A dozen groups from all over the United States and Canada each made beautiful applique quilts. Not just any applique quilts, but Baltimore quilts. It takes your breath away just to see them. The one made by my TAS group is wonderful creation, made-up entirely of original cut work designs honoring Elly and her family. I went back several times over the week and each time I found new elements in those small quilts.

Late in the week my husbands cousin Gladys from LA. met me to once again catch up and see the exhibits together. We headed over to the Baltimore exhibit to look at the quilts and exclaim over design and beautiful work. Gladys is a quilter as well and she was really interested in the details. We walked around and our discussion was noticed by several other viewers and pretty soon we were having a discussion that included about twenty. Over and over I was asked why the names of the quilt artists were not on the signs. I had been wondering that myself and simply did not have an answer. We even heard one person tell her friend that she did not know Elly was so prolific!

The next night many of the quilt makers attended a lovely meal at Massa's restaurant in Houston. It was fun catching up with old friends and hearing once again a program by Kathy Tennyson, a really prolific Baltimore applique quilt maker. She has made at least six album quilts, each one more beautiful than the last. Lovely. However once again while the project was talked about, the opportunity to introduce the women involved was lost. I had hoped that each groups members would be asked to stand so we could honor them. Not to be.

Beloved Baltimore Album Quilts is a book profiling these twelve quilts and C&T did name all the quilters. And at the risk of sounding like a whiner and trust me, even I think I am whining, the names are in the smallest font I have ever seen and while the rest of the book has super black type, these names are so light it is really difficult to read!

I am almost finished. I just want everyone to know that I really enjoyed my time on the quilts. My group really came together as friends and our skills as a group have grown expedentually. My only wish would be that " Anonymous is a Woman" would go back where she came from. Happy quilting my friends.