Our middle child visited us in May. Our grandson and his family were also visiting and she wanted to meet his wife and her son, and their baby daughter. She wants to be involved with her nephews and nieces but now that she lives in Texas and the nephews are in their late 20’s with adult responsibilities they don’t get together very often. It was a fun time having all of them in the house.
After grandson and family left, I showed our daughter the lap quilt I was ready to layer and machine quilt and she said she really liked it. I told her she could have it… or she could pick out fabric and we could make one for her. Her eyes lit up and we got busy going through my stash picking out fabrics she liked. Of course we had to make a trip to the quilt fabric store to round out the palette and I suggested we go south to Tecumseh because it has a great store and there is a nice little English Tea Room that has great lunches. Oh, did we have fun.
We made the quilt together, me cutting pieces and she laying them out using the finished top as a template. We looked, she switched pieces based on her knowledge of art, I put in an opinion or two based on my quilt-making experience, and we trust each other’s eye for color and composition. We discarded some fabrics we loved but didn’t work and made a couple of trips back to my stash to retrieve fabrics we hadn’t thought would work. I prepared them for sewing and she did the stitching. Then we “had” to make a trip to the fabric store in East Lansing to pick out the border and backing. The top was all pieced by the time she left. I have quilted it with a cotton flannel batting for the hot south Texas climate and now I have it boxed and ready to ship today.
I hope she takes it out of the box carefully because her dad added a secret surprise for her to find. He has been so excited because there is a story behind it – if she takes a photo and sends it to me I will share the rest it in a post. My surprise for her is that she will have to finish the hand sewing of the binding. I started but the arthritis in my thumb made it painful sewing. It truly is a collaborative quilt.
I keep thinking that I am in the best period of my life, now that I am in my 70’s. I have great grandchildren to fulfill my baby/toddler cravings and grandchildren from twelve to late twenties. I treasure my relationships with all of them, but my greatest treasures are my adult children and spouses. Our three children are all fifty-ish and are great people, the kind of people I like having as friends (as are the spouses). They are very different but each enriches my life in a special way. Now that they have total responsibility for making their life choices, we are freed to enjoy time creating fun life memories. It is the best time of my life.