It happened on a Monday. It could have just as easily happened on a Tuesday or a Thursday, but yes, it was a Monday.
It happened at 6:30 pm to be specific. Again it could have been anytime but I remember it well and it was definitely 6:30 pm on a Monday.
What am I talking about? Mac’s first band concert, of course.
It seems Mac has decided to play the tuba this year – 6th grade. (Can you believe it? Wasn’t he in kindergarten just last year?)
There were tryouts at the beginning of the year on many different instruments. Mac blew into the tuba mouthpiece and the director announced he was “a natural”. My interpretation– “We are short of tuba players and you look pretty good.”
Anyway, Mac now believes he was born to play tuba, which is a good thing. He is in the beginning band, a very good thing. And they had their first concert last Monday night . . . . . at 6:30 pm, a very, very good thing.
The evening started out with Gramps and me arriving at the school and coming in to the auditorium through the back door. All the kids were nicely seated in the audience section and no parents were anywhere to be seen. Suddenly Mac stood up and said to us, “You can’t be here!” What ever happened to “Hello Granny”?
We smiled and waved to him. “Hi, Mac.” Again, “You can’t be here!” He’s very big on rules and regulations lately.
“OK” we said. “We’re leaving. Where are we supposed to be?”
Mac. “Out in the hall! You can’t be here!”
I’m not sure to this day what we were not supposed to see but obligingly we went to the hallway and there were all the other families waiting patiently.
Finally we were allowed back into the auditorium and all the kids were by then on stage in their performance seats. Of course, we could not see Mac. He was one of the four tubas in the back row.
The concert was great with lots of Christmas music. All the instruments were featured throughout the evening including the four tubas in the back row.
The time passed too quickly and before we knew it we were hugging Mac back out in the hall. “Congratulations” and “Good Job” were heard from everyone. Mac was beaming.
How special for him to have both parents and both sets of grandparents hugging him and telling him how great he did. Even his great uncle, a musician, made an appearance and was very impressed.
Nothing feels better than family hugs. Nothing sounds better than family applause. Nothing feels better than family support. Even if it just happened to be a first time ever band concert on a Monday night at 6:30 pm.
Recently I went to the Houston Quilt Show and the quilts I saw there were spectacular. Of course I was drawn to the blue and white ones because that’s just how I roll. And I began to think of what could be done if you had just one piece of blue fabric. Maybe not dozens, but just one. Not a shopful , just one.
Well some people are really good at answering that question. I started to see some of the quilts in a new light. Here are some of the pretties I saw in one day.
I adore this one! All the different baskets and the handles at all different angles. This one reminds me of whirligigs. Maybe I’m showing my age and some of you don’t know what whirligigs are, but they look just like this quilt. Tee Hee!
How fantastic is this?! It’s like looking through many little stained glass windows. Or maybe a dozen or more blue snowflakes. Anyway this one is truly great! I really like the assymetrical look of this quilt. I don’t usually think that way, but I love it when others do.All the blue here is in the background. Another thing I seldom think of, but love it when others do it.What a great illusion this creates from a distance. And all those tiny pieces! My goodness!I can’t even imagine how this quilt was made! I’m so impressed! The Flying Geese are beyond spectacular!Another quilt where most of the blue is in the background. Love that starburst!Here is my favorite blue and white. Can’t go wrong with the standard color combination. The piecing that went into this beauty is beyond my imagination. It looks 3-D. A very modern looking design but the blue and white coloring draws me in.There are no words for this one! It looks like it is moving! Hard to accomplih with pieces of fabric. But very well done by this quilter.
And this was not all the ones that were there, just the ones that I saw. What a lovely day! My blue and white love was well met by the wonderful quilters at Houston. And I wish to thank each one for filling my heart as well as my eyes full of beauty and craftsmanship.
If this much can be done with blue, can you imagine what can be done with all the colors of the rainbow?
Ah quilt retreat! There is nothing like it. Four days of sewing, chatting, sharing, laughing, eating and maybe some sleeping. There is lots of humming of machines, questions like “Does this border go with this fabric?”, answers of “I prefer the blue!”, whirring of rotary cutters and even some quiet times of hand sewing. One person can be absorbed in reading directions, two people can be sharing a new technique, three people can be giving an opinion on placement of blocks for a quilt and any number of people an be taking a class on a brilliant idea or some new sewing notion.
A retreat is many things and can be anything to one person. Maybe it’s a chance to finish that project . . . . finally. Maybe it’s a chance to start a new project . . . . finally. And maybe it’s just time, time to sew and sew and sew on anything and everything you have. It’s the freedom to do whatever you want.
Ah quilt retreat! Looking forward to it is a joy. Experiencing it is true heaven. Even the memories of it are a blessing. Here are a few of mine.
This is just one block for a quilt done in appliqué. Can you imagine how spectacular that quilt will be?
This quilt looks like it was woven. And it is made out of flannel. What a coy hug it will give on cold nights.
A beautiful Christmas tree already for the holiday.
A beautiful quilt done in squares. Very modern looking.
Is this too cute? I love the baby penguin!
A wonderful red, white and blue star quilt. Love those stars!
This quilt is big, beautiful and not even done yet. There will be more poinsettias when completed. How perfect will that be?
A quilt of foxes is being worked on here. How adorable!
A little Christmas village just got finished here in this cute quilt.
Several of us took lessons on making stars the Inklingo way. Here are our results.
This spectacular one is made from a zillion little pieces of fabric applied to the background. Isn’t it wonderful?
I love the brightness of this quilt. Must be all those primary colors.
This is going to be a great quilt when it is done. Don’t you agree?
Another very interesting quilt. The blocks are going in all directions. Love the clocks!
This quilt is very soft looking. I bet it is very comforting too.
Here is a special quilt of several blocks of the Lady of Guadalupe. It was made for a special friend. Lucky lady!
This is not exactly a quilt but still a real cutie. It is a wool mat for a platter. It is all done by hand with much embellishment.
A complicated quilt that is very lovely to behold. Can’t wait till this one is done.
This one looks very hard but actually it is the fabric that is printed to look like 36 square blocks. Interesting, right?
This is all I can show you of the marvelous retreat I went to. The best parts are the intangibles. They are the relationships we all have and the history of many retreats and gatherings over the years. They are the hours spent in each others’ company through good times and bad. They are the words spoken between us over coffee, tea and wine, sharing meals, ideas and feelings.
All these things we carry in our hearts until the next time we meet. Be it tomorrow or next year. Nothing is lost or forgotten. Retreat is forever!
Many of us have been to a quilt show. And many of us have seen the quilts all nicely hung and organized in place. We have marveled at the beauty of the show, shopped at all the vendors and learned much at the demonstrations.
But how does all this quilt show thing happen? Do elves come in the night and perform magic? Does a wizard open a trunk and a quilt show pops out? Do we order one from Amazon and two days later it shows up neatly wrapped in a box? Not exactly.
First of all it takes at least a year of planning – sometimes more. That means monthly (or more often) meetings of a committee. Lots of emailing back and forth. Phone calls, messages, printouts, samples, first, second and final drafts, votes, opinions, disagreements and agreements – all go into making a quilt show.
Finally the week of the show comes and all involved are ready and on alert. Three days before the show even starts, all the quilts that are going to be in the show are delivered to the site. In four hours, as many as 350 or more quilts can be accepted, inspected, labeled and processed. All this is done alphabetically at check-in stations.
Two days before the quilt show the poles and drapes are up in place and the hanging of the quilts begins. The quilts are hung by sleeves on the back of each quilt over a rod. Each is numbered and labeled according to the category which it qualifies. All 350 or more quilts are hung and made to look as beautiful as possible in one day.
The next day begins the judging. Three different judges with their assigned scribes spend the entire day inspecting, analyzing and recording their assessment of each quilt.The written critique is returned with the quilt to the owner at the end of the show.
Then the winning ribbons are hung on the most outstanding quilts, honoring the makers. The most wonderful of all, the “Best of Show” is moved to a special place of honor.
During all this time, tables have been set up, signs have been placed, registration packets have been stuffed, vendors have set up their booths, banners have been hung, PA systems tested, concession stands filled, floors laid, lights hung, tickets counted and people have scurried from one job to another. All is now ready for tomorrow.
Tomorrow the quilt show opens. The doors will be unlocked. Quilt lovers and makers will stream in. There is nothing more to be done.
Nothing more but keep the show running smoothly!