Tuesday, 10 May 2011

An Amazing, Uplifting Experience!

OK ... I'm going to hurry up and TYPE!! Have been trying to jump on to do a post for a day and a bit now and blogger kept putting some funny 'thinking' swirly thingy on the writing window and it wouldn't let me type! GRRRRR!! But here I am now, taking advantage of being able to type again ... not a thinking swirly thingy in sight! :0)

On to the post ... last Saturday, I was incredibly fortunate to be involved in an AMAZING event! I've been telling you all for some time now about my time 'playing' out at Quilters Angel as part of Marion & Steph's wonderful Quilt Drive that involved making quilts to be distributed to people affected by the January flooding in the Lockyer Valley. An incredible number of ladies (from all over Australia!!) have been cutting, stitching, planning, sewing, pinning, ironing, quilting and binding to create a wonderful array of very special quilts, quilts that will remind flood victims that they are thought of, cared for and wrapped in warm, loving thoughts, just as they are wrapped in a colourful quilt. Saturday was the first distribution day and a small rural community called Mt Sylvia was our destination!! :0)

Bright and early on Saturday morning (well EARLY for this night owl on a Saturday!!!) sixteen of us gathered at Quilters Angel to load up the bus with homemade morning tea and ... of course!! ... QUILTS!!



Here are some of the ladies, forming a human chain to load the bags ... and bags ... and bags ... and BAGS!! ... of quilts onto the bus. We then loaded ourselves onto the bus, Marion did a head count to make sure we knew how many ladies we had to bring home again, and off we went. Bus driver Ian coped very well with 16 excited quilters and even threw in some snippets of information about where flood water had reached etc. as we passed through some of the areas worst hit by the flooding. It is very hard to match the images we all saw on the news with how the valley looks today, but there were enough reminders to reinforce what happened.

Some time later, we arrived at the Mt Sylvia State Primary School where a special fun day had been organised for people of the area to come together and just enjoy a day of family fun without worries or work. This was to be our distribution point, so the human chain formed again to UN-load the bus! :0)


See ... I TOLD you there were bags and bags ... and bags ... and BAGS! ... of quilts ready to be sent off to special new homes! :0) There were, in fact 104 quilts taken down to Mt Sylvia ... with another 80 or so left back at the shop to be distributed to other areas in coming months. But first ... we had to unpack THESE bags. We took over a classroom ...


... and spread quilts over desks ... over chairs ... over open windows ...


... over lines usually hung with posters and pictures ...


... over verandah and stair rails!! :0) Yes ... there's been some MIGHTY stitching efforts going on in the last few months! Tee! Hee! Hee!  This is actually the last of my photos cos I put my camera in my bag to help pin labels to quilts ... and my bag was packed up with some other gear ready for the return trip home!!! OOPS! No more photos! :0) But I can tell you there were a lot of smiling faces! :0) Each of the students who attend the Mt Sylvia School were to receive a quilt and the looks on those little faces ... the smiles ... the joy ... the excitement ... made every pin stab, unpicked seam and tangled bobbin all worthwhile! :0) A number of quilts were also presented to adults in the area who had been affected by the flood.

Although Mt Sylvia wasn't under water to the extent other areas in the Lockyer Valley were, many farms suffered damage to crops, roads were badly damaged, the area was isolated for some time during the flooding and some people in the area did have homes flooded. It was wonderful to not just send off the quilts, but to be there to meet the recipients, chat with people and to listen to their stories. And many of the folks said they not only appreciated the quilts, but that we had taken the time to visit their area to hand them over.

Then it was time for hugs, waving and piling back on the bus to head back up the hill ... and time for some 'special' drinkies! :0) Thanks to all the Quilting Angels for sharing during this trip and during the months of stitching that led to it. I've enjoyed meeting new people and making new friends ... not to mention LAUGHING!! ... with these awesome ladies! :0) We joked that Hollywood has "Charlie's Angels", but ... Look out! Cos Highfields has "Marion's Angels"! Tee! Hee! Hee! Which brings me to a VERY important thank you. From the time this heart-warming concept was launched, two ladies have worked harder and longer than anyone else to make it happen. They've given up their rare and precious time off and put in HUGE amounts of their own finances and resources. Marion and Steph ... you truly are ANGELS!! Thank you SOOOOOOO much for your dedication, drive and determination to make the Quilt Drive a reality. Your vision of sharing quilts stitched with love with flood-affected families in the Lockyer Valley has become a heart-warming reality.

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!



And they're both GORGEOUS as well! :0) Now the other wonderful thing about the Quilt Drive is that it's not over yet! There are more quilts finished and ready to give out ... Marion is co-ordinating with the Lockyer Valley Regional Council to find the people who need them most ... and she'll be holding a meeting this week to talk about making this an on-going project ... stitchers meeting regularly to create quilts to be given to worthwhile causes and people who need to be reminded that even during difficult circumstances ... people care!

So ... that was my Saturday and I'm sad to say the rest of the weekend was a bit scrambled and interrupted, so not much sewing done again ... though I DID manage to get all of my Pom Pom de Paris squares joined ... just need to tackle the applique next and a couple of things need to be tweaked first. I promise to show you when I get organised.

And speaking of organised ... something I am NOT!!! :0) ... I missed out on showing you a photo of another gorgeous birthday giftie I received recently. It was from the Lovely Lilly Linda and she surprised me with it when we met up at Mt Tamborine a couple of weekends ago ... OOOOOOOHHH!! The only thing better than birthday gifties is SURPRISE birthday gifties! Tee! Hee! Hee!


No ... that's NOT a cupcake ... as such! It's a face washer that has been folded into a cute cupcake paper to make it LOOK like a cupcake and it's sitting on top of a GORGEOUS rose-scented soap ... I've left it sitting in my sewing room and it smells DIVINE!!! :0) And look at the pretty glittery, jingly bracelet!!! Oh yeah ... I was SPOILT this year for my extended birthday! Tee! Hee! Hee! THANK YOU LINDA!!!

Right now, though, I think I'm going to spoil myself with a nice hot cup of tea ... our temperatures have taken a sudden dive below 10 degrees ... about 8 degrees Celsius in my kitchen at 7am this morning ... BRRRRRRRR!!! I'm sure I've mentioned before how much I hate being cold!! SIGH! Not looking forward to the next few months at all!! Hope you're warm and snuggly wherever you may be. Hopefully blogger will let me come back a little sooner next time without swirly thinking thingies hogging the screen! :0) Til next time ...

BEAR HUGS!
CHEERS!
KRIS

11 comments:

BubzRugz said...

What a lovely post... it was such a great day and you have described it well..... see you tommorrow...
Hugz

Kerryanne English said...

I've had a few hiccups with blogger this week too Kris.... ggrrrr.
What a magnificent effort by the Toowoomba quilters to make all those beautiful quilts. Even nicer that you all went to distribute them to the waiting families. I think you are ALL angels.
Hugs ~ Kerryanne

shez said...

Great post Kris and i had trouble with blogger yesterday as well

Linda Lilly Cottage said...

Yay Kris!!! How wonderful you got to go and see where the lovely quilts were going and oh my goodness what a great load of quilts!! What a fabulous job you have all been doing making those quilts and that the drive is continuing is even more special.
Oh and you are very welcome, I do hope you enjoy your bracelet and low fat cupcake!! tee hee
Kiss Noises Linda

Love Bears All Things said...

Loved reading about this trip to distribute quilts...imagine there were some tears as the children received them..I'm wondering, now, what were those special drinks that were shared on the way home......curious me...
Lovely Birthday gifts...Happy Day whenever it was.
Mama Bear

Sew Useful Designs said...

Hi Kris!!
Oh wow sweetie - what an amazing day you all had, and how absolutely beautiful for the children and families to receive such special tokens of love and warmth. I'm with Kerryanne - I think you are ALL angels, too!

Bless you sweetie!!!!

Hugs! Vikki xoxoxoxoxo

Samelia's Mum said...

You girls are amazing!

Chookyblue...... said...

a huge effort which I am sure is greatly appreciated..........

Michelle Ridgway said...

Bless you all what a magnificent effort. I'm sure those quilts will be forever cherished.
Michelle Rag-tag Sttichin'

Sue said...

Wonderful to see the results of all that work (and play)
Well done to everyone.

The Tame Lion said...

Absolutely fantastic! A wonderful time indeed!

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