One of the questions I’m most often asked is . . how do you get so much done? I never know how to respond because I don’t necessarily think I get more done than anyone else. But, if there’s one thing that keeps me racing against the clock, and really . . sometimes that’s what I do. I watch the clock and am constantly trying to get a certain amount done within 10 minutes, or 15 minutes or whatever time slot I set for myself. Or, I’ll put clothes in the dryer and try to vacuum upstairs and unpack the dishwasher and clean the toilets before the dryer goes off. It’s really a race against time all day for me. That doesn’t work for everyone, nor am I recommending it — I’m just telling you how my days go.
But two things have happened in the last 24 hours that have left me in tears, and smiles and more determined than ever to make the most of every minute I have and to use my quilting talents to help others — whether it’s to share patterns, to give a quilt to someone — either a stranger or a frind, to keep them warm or just to let them know they are loved.
A couple of years ago I taught in Houma, Louisiana. Maybe I’m a little biased but the people in Louisiana are the best! They’re friendly, they’re giving, they know how to work and they know how to party. Mom went with me on that trip (there was a bridge!) and we stayed in the home of Marylea, another quilter. Marylea’s friend, Wanda, was there with us a lot. Marylea is a sweetheart and we have kept in touch, as I did with several of the Houma ladies. Wanda was hilarious! Today on Facebook, another Houma lady posted that Wanda was very, very sick and within an hour, she posted that Wanda had lost her battle. Wanda is about my age, an avid quilter, has a close family and many friends. She was too young! No doubt she had many quilts started and many ideas in her head waiting to be done. It was too soon! She had almost no warning and I’m sure she had no idea this was coming. I’m very glad I was able to meet Wanda and I’m so sorry she’s gone so soon.
The other incident . . while teaching also in Louisiana this past week, I met a very nice older couple. I’m not so good with judging age but I’m guessing they’re as old as my parents. The lady has had a stroke and has problems walking but she perseveres and is able to quilt. Her husband brought her to the guild meeting and later in the week, to the workshop. He came back to get her and they were telling me how they made the glazed pecans she had brought for a snack. We began talking and they told me about their chickens, and their fig trees and the wine the man makes. They invited me to their home, showed me her sewing room, the wine “cellar”, gave me three bottles of homemade wine to bring home to Vince, along with a jar of her homemade orange marmalade from their orange trees. On her design wall, she had a beautiful batik New York Beauty that she’s been working on. She talked to me about maybe getting a small quilting machine.
This lady struggles to walk but yet she’s almost completed a New York Beauty. She makes jelly. She attends workshops and guild meetings. She is truly making the most of her days, even though she faces much difficulty with almost every step she takes.
Even though she attended my workshop and loved the quilt she was working on, I learned more from this elderly couple than she learned from me!
Life is short! We never know how many days we have left, nor the circumstances we’ll face but my plan is to make the best of every day I have left. Join me and do the same, ok? Let’s all do it for Wanda!