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Helen Kelley Patchworks

Quiltmaker, Teacher, Lecturer, Designer, Author, Judge

Hot Water

May 11, 2007 – I had another great idea in the shower this morning. It seems to happen quite often, as I stand there washing my hair. Colors, patterns, and plans swirl in my head. Shampoo commercials suggest this is due to luxurious lathers and enticing aromas. I think it’s that the hot water on my head makes the creative juices in my brain move like tree sap in the spring. I might be able to solve world problems if the hot water lasted long enough.


Arf!

May 6, 2007 – My daughter, Connie, is here for a week. Her Guide Dog, Pacifica, is in Seventh Heaven. She discovered my array of fabric laid out on the floor, ready to be cut and pieced. She has curled up and nested in the center of it and I cannot find it in my heart to shoo her away. She seems to enjoy the fabric almost as much as I do.


And So We Begin Again

Noah/Hicks
May 2, 2007 – I have finished one great-grandchild’s quilt. I loved every minute, but I’m glad it’s done. Now, a new quilt is growing in my head. My third great-grandson is one year old. It’s time to start his quilt.

I have been playing with a Noah’s ark theme for quite a while. Water and animals. But it has begun to morph into water and animals, Minesota style. Noah’s ark is now a canoe pulled up on the shore of a Minnesota lake. Pine trees in the background. Reeds in the foreground. My great-grandson’s name is Reed.


Not My First

April 28, 2007 – Today I am eighty years old. It doesn’t seem that should be particularly significant. So many great people, quilters and not, have turned eighty before me. But, my daughter reminded me that I love each quilt that I make as if it were my first. It doesn’t matter how many have been created before. So, perhaps I should celebrate this birthday, as well.


Scaredy-Cat

April 23, 2007 – I’m a scaredy-cat. I admit it. When I go swimming, I stand on the dock for a long time before I get the courage to jump into the cold water. I’ve always blamed it on the fact that I was used to the warm salty water of the Chesapeake Bay. But to be perfectly honest, I just lack the courage. Now, I am trying to make myself begin my latest quilt. I’ve laid out the cutter and the paper and pencil and the fabric on the floor. I’ve walked around it. Now, I am going to have to close my eyes and jump in.


Something Old, Something New

Wedding Quilt
April 16, 2007 – Next Saturday our grandson James is marrying his Patience. Of course I made him a wedding quilt. I’ve made one for each of my grandchildren. And each has been special, with something old (the tradition) and something new (the quilt).


Great-Grandma Kelley Quilts – Trey

Horse April 10, 2007 – My second great grandson loves the State Fair. The rides, the food, the animals, the lights, the excitement. This quilt is built from photographs of him at the fair. He watched each step as I assembled and sewed, offering opinions all along the way. When it was time to add the finishing touch, my signature, he announced that because it was his quilt, he would choose where I would put my name.

To see Treys’s quilt and my other Great-Grandma Kelley Quilts click here.


Promise

April 3, 2007 – Last week my crocus poked their heads up through the grey debris from winter. They were a wonderful promise of spring to come. Today the wind is blowing and the snow is falling like November. I feel betrayed. I think I will wait for the tulips. Perhaps I can trust them more.


Great-Grandma Kelley Quilts – Connor

Tractor
March 30, 2007 – I did not start my first great-grandson’s quilt until he was a year old. Why so long? Each one of these special quilts has the essence of the child as he has grown. I begin by savoring his or her uniqueness. It grows from there. When it this one was done, my great-grandson stood in front of it and cried, “It’s me!” I had accompomplished my goal.

To see Connor’s quilt and my other Great-Grandma Kelley Quilts click here.


Birthday Math

March 27, 2007 – Next week the Minnesota Quilters Guild members will be celebrating their 30th birthday with a lovely, elegant, fattening cake at the monthly meeting. Coincidently, I have an 80th birthday in April. Someone commented that I must have been 50 at the guild’s inception. I don’t know about that. I only do quilting math these days. I stopped doing birthday math years ago.


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