Monday, December 15, 2008
3 Breast Cancer Quilts In Honor of Carol Finally Delivered...
In January of this year I found out that my boyfriend's mother's cousin had passed away from Breast Cancer. This is the letter I received from Heather, my sister-in-law:
Several weeks ago, my cousin lost her fight to breast cancer. She's my mom's cousin and one of her daughters (the one I am close with) is my age. I can't put myself in the place of my cousin to know that she just lost her mom. She and her two sisters have had a very tough life. They lost their father at an early age too. So, here they are parentless, and my cousin is not married yet and I know she'll probably be getting engaged sometime soon and it's just sad that she won't have them here with her for those special moments.
At any rate, I admire her very much. She is a really strong woman! Her and her sisters are going to do the 3-day race for the cure and they are looking for donations. I didn't know if anyone might be interested or if you could spread the word along. I know that some companies match donations and such. I just wanted to do whatever I could to help. So if you have a moment to check it out or pass it along, that'd be great!
At that point I felt like I really needed to do something... of course make each daughter a quilt to comfort them. What a loss and I couldn't imagine! Right away I turn to my friends on the HGTV Quilting and Needlework Forums and ask if they'd be willing to donate a pink/white block. I wasn't thinking too big and before I knew it we had almost 90 blocks and about 50 people involved with donating blocks and money for batting, backing, shipping, long arm quilters, a woman who donated 3 beautiful quilt labels and this project became a pretty big undertaking. Over the course of 3 months the blocks were sent in... 90!!! In flowed letters of stories from girls who were making blocks in honor of mothers, sisters, cousins, and so many loved ones. Letters of love, hope, faith and even more love. Once all blocks were in, I pieced the 3 very large (about queen size) quilts and sent them off to the long arm quilters.
Around September the quilts had arrived back to me, quilted beautifully and ready for delivery! Next step... to get in touch with the sister who lives here in New Jersey. It took me about a month or so to get in touch with her, she's a busy one! And we planned to meet for dinner. Time slipped by and in November we got back in touch and then fast forward to this past week when we finally agreed to meet up. Last night Allan and I headed to her house to deliver something was all she knew. I hadn't told her anything of the quilts, just that all of us had felt moved to do something for them. We arrived and talked and finally I told her the story and she was so gracious, thankful and excited. Of course there were lots of tears and lots of heartfelt hugs... how incredible it felt to be a part of this! I really love my friends on the board and I am so grateful they helped make this happen. I could've pulled off something small... but never anythingof this magnitude.
Here is the letter Christine posted tonight on the board (and how sweet of her to take time to post a thank you to everyone!)
"Christine (Baby Bear)
Posted Dec 15, 2008 10:04 PM
I want to give all of you a hug!!! I cannot thank you enough for the beautiful quilts! It is truly the best gift I have ever received! I am so very touched, and I'm even crying as I write this.
I told both my sisters about the quilts, and they were so touched. They will be coming from South Carolina to visit the day after Christmas, so they will be able to see them then. I didn't want to send pictures, because the pictures would not do the quilts justice. I want them to see the quilts for the first time in person
There aren't words that can express my gratitude. The quilts are extraordinary, and just knowing how all of you came together with Talia, and put forth so much time & effort for someone who you hadn't even met before, is so remarkable! Your acts of kindness embody the very essence of my mother, Carol. And for that reason, this gift has such a special meaning to me. It is also very fitting because my mother loved to sew as well.
Your thoughtfulness is overwhleming, and you will hold a very special place in my heart forever. This past year has been very difficult for me, but it is moments like last night that make a world of differnece. I owe that moment to all of you! I only wish there was a way to give a moment like that back. From the bottom of my heart.....THANK YOU!
Here are some pictures: