Last weekend, the International Quilt Show was held in Cincinnati and a group of women from Sharps Chapel joined a bus tour and headed north to check it out. I was in Dayton at the time and arranged to meet them there for one day.
The first photo shows everyone in our group seated for lunch inside the convention center. Three women were from Sunset Bay, two from Norris Shores, one from Tanglewood, and two from Pinnacle Point (near the ferry). That’s me in the cream jacket on the left.
It was a huge quilt show, with hand made quilts from all over the world. I did not count the number of quilts, but there were easily 150.
And of course, where there are quilters, the quilt vendors cannot be too far away. It was fun to see all the gadgets we supposedly can’t live without.
The two quilts I photographed here were my favorites. I like geometric shapes and color. It was interesting to get to know the other women better and learn what they were interested in. Some liked quilts with flowers in them. Others had preferences for quilts that had not been embellished with painting.
I am so glad that I was able to meeting up with the group and share the experience with them. Thanks, Nancy S., for helping to make this happen and making me feel welcome.
Last week, the book club I belong to, the Dewey Decimals, discussed Wild. From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail by Cheryl Strayed. I had reserved it from the library, and was # 2 on the list (after 3 months!) and I did not get it in time to join in on the discussion, but I knew that I would read it because true-life adventure is my favorite genre.
I am now half way through, devouring every page, and I LOVE it. It brings back so many memories of my experiences backpacking and camping in the backwoods and wilderness (there is a difference), first when I was a Girl Scout in high school on the Buckeye Trail and later after I married Jim and experinced some wonderful adventure vacations that included 5-day whitewater rafting trips, backpacking up/down Pikes Peak, and wilderness canoeing.
Below is a trailer that introduces you to Cheryl Strayed, that gives her background and shows photos from the trail. As I look at the photos, I think about how I had seen and experienced that kind of beauty and that kind of wilderness – where there is a sense of awe, empowerment, respect for nature, and yes, fear of nature.
In my case, the fear was of bears. Most people don’t put themselves in a situation to experience true fear. I did not plan this and I did not expect the emotions I experienced once in that situation, but this is an experience not to be lost to our future generations and the experience would be lost if we shot and killed everything we were afraid of. There is a beauty in the concept of wilderness and a strength that is gained in the emotional experience of that wilderness.
It was perhaps 20 years ago when Jim and I embarqed on a 5-day wilderness canoe trip in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area near Ely Minnesota. It required a permit to limit the number of visitors. No motors were allowed. No planes could fly over. I loved, and got strength from, the fact that there were no signs to follow. We had only a map and our ability to read that map and match it to the land formations to find our next camp site or path for portaging between lakes. It was a trip of challenges and triumphs.
We never saw a bear, but we heard others say that the bears would cleverly wait at one end of the path and get into your packs as you were portaging your canoe to the other end, later to return to find everything ravaged. I do remember, however, coming up to a less used campsite, getting out, and having a feeling that was not right. I could smell danger. I could hear danger. We chose not to stay. I will never forget it, nor the mosquitos that ravaged our arms and legs unmercifully, regardless of bug spray. I couldn’t wear nylons for a month afterward.
Below is an in-depth interview of Cheryl Strayed, where she talks about the psychological growth she went through on this journey – to better explain why this book goes beyond a story of a woman hiking by herself for 94 days on a trail that may only have 100 hikers in a year and the physical pain her body experienced as a result.
The other ladies gave it a 4 – 4.75 rating (out of 5). I give it a no apologies 5.
I am a quilter in remission. I have not quilted in over 15 years, but know in my heart that I will start it up again sometime in the future. So, I welcomed the nudge from Nancy Sullivan, who founded the bee. She’s been keeping me informed with emails about the group’s goings-on and invited me to stop by.
On Thursday, May 24, the timing was right and I popped into the regular Thursday quilting bee gathering to introduce myself and get to know the ladies. View meeting dates/times and location.
There were six women at the bee on this day, working on various projects. They had all brought their portable sewing machines and were more than happy to stop what they were doing to chat. The meeting room was bright and cheery, with lots of windows, and the wide variety of fabrics and colors reminded me why I like quilting so much.
Dawnette working on quilts for children at a local crisis center.
I already knew three of the women from Sunset Bay. Linda Mobley (in the top photo) and Nancy Sullivan are both homeowners and full-time residents. Another woman also from Sunset Bay, Diane F., had visited earlier in the meeting as a guest.
The other women were Dawnette, who lives in Norris Shores, Judy Maynard, who lives in Tanglewood (another transplant from Ohio – Franklin to be exact), Sara (without an “h”, as she likes to say), and Gwen Johnson.
Dawnette (in photo to the right) was working on a project for a child’s crisis center. Nancy was sewing some small pouches / purses.
The group seems to be very active. They are taking a bus tour to Columbus Ohio on June 13-15 for the National Quilter’s Association (NQA) quilt show. Sounds like fun.
2nd and 4th Thursday of the month
10 am – 2 pm
Where: Irwin’s Chapel Methodist Church
Old Valley Rd.
More Information: Contact Nancy Sullivan 865-278-3206
Are you a quilter? I am. I took my first quilting class about 18 years ago with a gal pal from work. The lap quilt in the photo, which has a place of honor draped over my sofa in the living room, is my first quilt, and I am as proud of it today as I was back then.
I am a machine quilter. I appreciate what traditional hand-quilters do, but I don’t have the patience for it. My favorite part is selecting the pattern and fabrics and piecing the pattern pieces together. Assembling it all together with batting and binding is just a necessary evil, as far as I am concerned.
Around the time I was taking the quilting class, I remember taking my niece to the fabric store with me (she was probably four or five at the time) and I would teach her about light and dark fabrics and how the right combination of them makes the pattern. We would look at the fabrics through a red transparant plastic piece that helps you focus on the light and dark aspect because it masks the actual colors.
A couple of days later, I picked up that same niece on a Sunday afternoon to go to the park. I told her to bright a light jacket, as it was windy out. She innocently looked up to me and said, “Aunt Mary, I only have a dark jacket. Is that OK?” I’ll always remember that moment with a loving smile.
Imagine my joy in reading in The Union News Leader that there is a quilting club right here in Sharps Chapel called the Norris Lake Quilting Bee.
It’s amazing what you can find on the internet. Enjoy this video that I found that shows some free-form machine stitching technique.