Our quilter,Barb, gave us a quick lesson on paper piecing. Whew, it’s tricky. My first boat took nearly two hours (seam ripper in action), but, I got it and can now know these little boats out, easily in 20 minutes. I’m addicted.
We’ve enjoyed this easy pattern, Streak of Sunshine, in our new year. Good use of scraps for us, which is often what we are piecing with. I will enter the pattern on the blog (if I can figure out how to do it). We had about 30 quilts complete, last week But on Friday, Perdy and Carol delivered 10 more awesome quilts that they had made during the summer; so beautiful.
The pictures will tell it all and I hope to get them up, soon. This was an unforgettable experience. The adults we met were warm and friendly, helpful and we truly felt so welcome. The children were enthusiastic, receptive, charming and we were so lucky that they had a good understanding of our language. We visited 4 orphanages, 2 with entirely HIV children; and two that did not necessarily have HIV children. I was so happy these institutions were providing great care – healthy happy children.
For me, the happiest moment, was on arrival at Addis airport. It was filled!! with Americans. No sight see-ers in this group, they were all there to volunteer and help Ethiopia. I really have never been prouder of my countrymen.
Evenings, we spent with the older girls and two boys from A-Hope, teaching them hand sewing. A very industrious group, they turned out beaded and decorated dolls, beaded bracelets, fabric yoyo’s by the dozen, scrunchies for their hair. It was amazing how quickly they could pick up these skills.
A week seems like a short time but it was so jam-packed, it seemed like a very significant part of my life. I will never forget this experience and I vow to continue helping in one way or another, the orphan children in Ethiopia.
I am packed, with only one week to go. I have been packing in my non-sleep for the past 2 weeks, so I thought I may as well get it done and try to get some sleep. Clothes were minor as we bought a small selection at Goodwill items, with the intent of leaving them in Addis. The incomes are so small there, that these items will be welcomed. The quilts…whew I got in 46 of them but packed and re-packed to squeeze them in – weighing the luggage all the way through the process as those large checked bags can only be 50#.
Also made it in the bags: 23 pairs of children’s scissors, enough felt for about 25 felt sewing kits; enough fleece to decorate about the same # recycle bags; a jar of pnut butter and gluten free crackers, gluten free fruit bars for me; and 3-1/2# penny candy – tootsie roll pops and such. Disgusting isn’t it, not healthy, but don’t kids around the world love candy?
As I write, I realize I’m picking up 100 royal blue, non lettered recycle bags on Monday, due to my good friend’s wonderful donation. Guess I may have to toss some clothes out, to get those in! We will embellish or do names with sharpies; enough for all the children.
For the week then, my focus is to learn some key phrases in the native language, Amharic – practice, practice. I also want to spend some time on sight seeing ideas. There should be ample time as we teach sewing after school and on weekends.
I promise some great photos and stories when I return, not before, as the lap top didn’t make it in the bag either. Until then, please say a small prayer for our safety and our abilities to reach out and touch the hearts of these children. We are at an AHope orphanage, AHope.org if you want to take a glimpse.
deuna seun betu goodbye for a while,
With high anticipation, we pack to go home to Washington and sadly, leave Arizona. The beautiful warm weather, blue skies and a whole park full of friends will greet us next fall when we return. But home is Washington and time to catch up on our family members; dote on our grandchildren.
The quilts, gosh 92 completed; 46 going to Haiti along with 40 little sundresses made by folks in the park. And 46 beautiful quilts for me to tote to Ethiopia in May. Fabric donations have kept us going all season with plenty leftover to start in the fall. The park has allowed us to prepare a lunch once a month and that money has offset the expense of batting for 2 quilt groups and allowed the kickoff of the little sundresses; so grateful for that.
Life is good and more news to follow as I prepare for the Ethiopia trip. Wow!