When you get a call from your husband because he got rear-ended when he stopped for a school bus, you know it's not even going to be a good weekend.
All parties are fine. Kid is breathing fine and has not had a recurrence. Husband is likewise uninjured by the accident. Can't say as much for the vehicle he was driving. I don't really remember much of the weekend as it was spent consoling my husband and hovering over our youngest son to monitor his breathing, while planning for a birthday for the next boy up in the family. At least the cake was good.
Someday these things may end up in one of my novels. Right now they're just troubling.
I've been reading Jennifer Chiaverini's Elm Creek Quilts novels and I'm hooked, not only on the books but also on the quilting. Quilting is something I've wanted to do in the past, something I associate with my grandmother. I've never gotten around to it. It seems like there isn't time or space. The sense of creating something I can see, working with the different patterns and colors, appeals to my visual creativity in a way that writing doesn't. The practical nature of the art is another consideration. There's also history in quilting.
Patchwork quilts as we know them are a uniquely American creation. Women in early America wasted nothing, and scraps of fabric were sewn together into beautiful bed coverings. Different patterns and settings emerged over time, some named for the visual effect (Ocean Waves), some for a geographic area or trail (Road to Oklahoma). The beauty of the work was equal to the utilitarian nature of it. In addition to brightening the home, quilts kept Pioneer families warm through cold winter nights. Girls started sewing nine patch squares early and would complete several quilts before marrying. One tradition states that a girl could not marry until she had completed twelve quilt tops, a bee would be organized to quilt all twelve before the wedding. Like an early American bridal shower, with a practical as well as a social aspect.
After my kids are asleep I'm going to get out the quilt Grandma made for my wedding. It's in storage right now to keep the kids from damaging it. Lovely as it is, I know Grandma would want it to be well-used rather than having it perfectly preserved but never admired or snuggled under on a cold night. After reading about quilting and quilters so much in the last weeks, I will look at my wedding quilt with new eyes, seeing the effort in every tiny stitch, the love in the selection of a design picked especially for me. A quilt, like firewood, can truly warm you twice.