Looking for answers to life's questions

A Cheerleader

Each of us has our unique gift to the world. My friend (such a nice word) Emily’s is quilting. This weekend the place in Vancouver, Washington where we go for retreats was hosting an open house. Nancy’s SewNGo was making some changes including the name, now “The Countryside Quilters” and wanted to show off the new classroom as well as give newcomers a view of the wonderful facility without charge. Since I cannot as yet drive that far on my own, our friend Patti offered a ride if I could meet her on the other side of the highway as she had a couple other quilting friends going along with her as well. I could do the 10 minute drive easy and Patti did the rest with ease. I was more than delighted to be included. (Another nice word)

On the wall at Nancy’s

 

Apparently, some of us missed the memo. Patti with white t-shirt and biggest smile.

Part of the open house was a showing of my friend Emily’s quilts. She was the featured quilter for 3 days. Emily is my neighbor and also a member of the quilt group I joined right after moving to this town. She started quilting after she retired and at 80, is a most prolific quilter. As her hands have succumbed to arthritis, she has leaned more to applique quilting. It’s her favorite way of expressing her art. She took around 70 of the quilts she had at home to be displayed. I didn’t include them all here. This does not include her Christmas quilts, the quilts she has gifted to family and friends or her many donation quilts. She and Patti regularly get together for weeks at a time somewhere away from home to quilt together and challenge themselves and each other. They are both willing to help and teach a newbie like myself in the quilting art.

Emily in the foreground

Emily was just stunned that her quilts deserved their own showing. She was just overwhelmed with emotion that she was the recipient of all those accolades. I can guarantee she deserved each and every one.
My gift in the world will probably never be quilting. I enjoy it but not as much as I love cheering about the success of someone else. To be able to write and tell you about it is the gift I have to share. I relish others success and am an avid admirer of the wonder of their gifts. Someone has to be the cheering section and I’m that person. I get so excited about the things my friends make that I almost can’t contain myself.

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I’m also not the best photographer in the world. My hands are starting to shake somewhat as I’ve noticed many of my photos too fuzzy to view. So you get to see what’s passable. We signed up for more classes at the retreat center that are just one day events. I’m so excited to get to go play again. SewNGo has their own Facebook page so you can pop over and see more wonderful photos. I borrowed a couple from Nancy that were better than mine. She won’t mind.

Taking photos with the cell phone.

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What is your unique gift in the world?

From my heart to yours,
Marlene Herself

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Comments on: "A Cheerleader" (65)

  1. What a remarkable group you are, and how amazing is your friend Emily. Your gift, I think, is appreciation: of life, your friends, and the small joys of daily life.

    Liked by 5 people

  2. Emily’s quilts are delightful–and she is so prolific! You’re a good friend and a great cheerleader–and that is *quite* the gift!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Reblogged this on Pen and Paper and commented:
    I love this post by Insearchofitall, A Cheerleader! Giving comfort, laughter and emotional support is a gift we should give each other, always. That is what this post is about.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Emily is such an amazing quilter! Thank you so much for sharing her talents with us, Marlene. ♥ It’s so wonderful that you have found your creative ‘tribe.’ Having a special place to gather, share, and create together with kindred spirits is one of life’s true joys! You are a delightful cheerleader… and so very wise, Marlene. Thank you for sharing your special gifts today! ♡

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for stopping by, Dawn. Quilters are such a unique kind of women in their open willingness to share their talents and friendships. If you ever need a friend, find a quilter. Enjoy a wonderfilled day. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • So true, Marlene! I always love talking with quilters. I truly admire their talents and dedication as they create such amazing works of art! Sending creative hugs! ♡

        Liked by 1 person

  5. What a wonderful story. You are the perfect cheer leader and friend. Emily’s story is an inspiration. Reblogging on One Creative Family.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Reblogged this on One Creative Family and commented:
    Very inspirational story.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. What a coincidence that I should read this straight after posting about my admiration of someone else’s skills. We can’t all do everything and I think it’s lovely to take time to admire the skills of others.
    Emily’s quilts are stunning – what a talented friend you have. Thank you for sharing them here.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much. I’m still catching up on my reading but I will stop by your post soon. I agree, we can’t do it all and I love seeing and being the appreciator of others work and talents. Emily certainly shines in her area. Have a wonderfilled week.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Aw…I loved this post, Marlene. What a talented bunch! Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I agree, you are the best cheerleader out there! 🙂 It is quite a talent to be so able to warmly offer accolades and to truly appreciate the work of others. Emily’s quilts are beautiful – and it is wonderful that you have this group of friends to hang out with and share the joy of crafting with too! And I don’t think you should put your own abilities down at all, I have hanging in my art room some beautiful examples of your work! ❤ I hope you get to go on a few more retreats with your friends, I'm sure they appreciate having you along as much as you appreciate being there with them. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your kind words, Pauline. I think I’m pretty realistic about my abilities. I am a beginner with much to learn and I love the process. I would certainly not be at the same level as someone who has devoted so much time and energy into their art. I’m just grateful they are willing to share the knowledge. At our age, it gets harder to make new friends when you are new to an area. These women have been so kind to include me. It does the heart good to still see kind and caring people in the world. I’ll be happy with the day long classes for now. Now it’s time to go pull weeds. 🙂 Have a wonderfilled week. Giant hugs.

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  10. How wonderful that you were able to secure a ride to share in Emily’s day. Her quilts are spectacular. I know exactly what you mean about being the cheerleader and appreciating the skills of others. My talent isn’t in quilting and I have accepted that. I thought long and hard about what my “one” skill was. Then I tried to see myself through the eyes of my family and realized that each would say something different. In the end, I’d have to say that I hope what I leave behind is the love I have for my family and that they remember me as always having the time to give them my attention and encourage them along the way.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Your cross stitch is phenomenal! Something I can’t do at all. Not even badly. You also make something out of more nothing than anyone I have ever see. You are a teacher in a way that few ever are. You taught your children, grandchildren and anyone within reach how to be kinder to the world. That’s a big deal. You are also a cheerleader too. The world needs us too. If everyone is making art and no one is appreciating it, what’s the point except for your own joy?

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      • I rarely count cross stitch as my special skill since I’ve never created my own patterns and simply copy the lovely work of those more talented. But you make a good argument for looking at my stitching in a new light.

        If I am remembered as a teacher of making do with what I have or find I would be content with that as my legacy.

        Liked by 3 people

  11. Hey Marlene – you sell yourself short. I’ve seen some your quilting, which is quite spectacular as well! So happy for your friend, and you to get to go on these excursions! Happy writing, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Isn’t it great to hang out with creative people even if it isn’t your gift? I used to knit with a group of women and I was an abysmal knitter but I loved their company and seeing what they could do with sticks and yarn. Your friend is an artist. Absolutely beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Susanne. You GET it! Just hanging out with them is why I continue to struggle with the quilting. My friend compliments my writing so we have a mutual admiration society. Works for me. Thanks for stopping by.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. What lovely work! I’m very impressed.

    I recently decided to teach myself to crochet. And, well…but we’re all in different stages of learning, right?!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. What a delightful post Marlene! I am totally in awe of creative people (I’m a computer and science geek without a creative bone in my body). I adored looking at those amazing quilts – such incredible talent. And such wonderful, tangible warmth from everyone concerned and from your post – thank you for making me smile!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You make me laugh, Clare. I did a post several years ago about that particular bone. I don’t really have one either and tend toward the geeky side myself. I’m kind of a science junky myself which is why I like reading your posts. Not exactly a fit in the box kind of women but it keeps life fresh and interesting. I tend to surround myself with creative people to encourage that part of me. It’s harder to find your kind to spend time with talking science and tech. That’s what I keep my children close for. Daughter is very geeky and we call my son tech support or T.S. on my blog. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by.

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  15. Fabulous quilts, she is a very talented lady and to adapt her skills now she has arthritis shows real spirit. Your talents have to include the word generous!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Nan. Yes, Emily shows real spirit and I really do admire that more than the quilts. She inspires me to keep going in spite of my limitations. We can adapt to any situation if we choose. Appreciate the kind words.

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  16. Thank you for a wonderful post!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Marlene, I am so pleased you managed to all join together.. And Oh what a beautiful skill your friend has, Her designs and quilts such exquisite designs .. I know Quilting in the USA is one of those pastimes that are often passed down.. And are heirlooms in many a family..
    What a wonderful gift to receive if one had one of these fabulous quilts gifted

    Such a wonderful Post. Thank you for sharing the gift of one of your friends.. So beautiful.. and I really enjoyed all the slide shows.. xxx

    I Hope you have a good rest of the week Marlene.. Sending LOVE.. and Mega Hugs xxx ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • She has given so many of her quilts away already she’s not sure what will happen with the rest. She makes so many for charity already. Always stretching her creative boundaries. It’s like your paintings should be shared too. You are so very talented in so many ways. Several bloggers that I follow are just so talented and not enough people know. I’m going to have to find a way to share more. Thanks for stopping by. Giant hugs. M

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Marlene, I read this last night, bleary eyed, so closed my laptop and went to bed, so I could enjoy it with fresh eyes this morning. I agree with all that has been said here before: it’s a gift to be able to genuinely care and share the work of others. It’s an interesting concept the idea of gifts vs talents. I have a niece and two nephews, all wonderful at the piano, but apparently one of the three really stands out, even though they’ve all worked just as hard. I think perhaps gifts are what we are born with (and can choose to cultivate…or not). Talent is something we work hard to achieve. Or perhaps those words are interchangeable. I think my gift is kindness and honesty. Interestingly, others have made fun of me over the years for being the one that picked up a dropped five dollar bill and returned it to the owner or the one that stood up for the underdog. Sometimes my gifts invited ridicule. I had to grow up to recognize what was what. You’ve given me lots to think about here.

    As for the quilts, I love them. Every last one of them. And because I sew and play with fabric, I know the hours, the skill and the attention to detail that goes into making these functional works of art. That is a gift in itself: something that can warm the body while stimulating the heart and the mind. Wow! I’m so happy you’ve found your people in a new city. I don’t think that’s easy either. It’s a testament to who you are and the fact that anyone would welcome you into a group, because of who you are. I’m so glad to call you friend.

    Liked by 2 people

    • What a thoughtful and kind reply, Alys! Thank you so much. I love the fact that Patti and Emily challenge themselves and each other to keep trying new things. It’s easy to build skill in one area but to keep trying new things is what inspires me the most. I’m with you on what I call a life value. Honesty and kindness are where you place value in the world. They are at the top of my list too. And I’m sure generosity rings true for you as well. Those things were not modeled for me in my home. They were values I cultivated. Gifts vs talent is something I’m going to look more into. You have me thinking about that too now. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I agree, Marlene! Challenging ourselves not only ensures that we grow, but it keeps things from getting stale and I think, provides something to look forward to as well. Good for you for cultivating the values that are important to you. I’m sure that wasn’t easy.

        Liked by 1 person

  19. Congrats to Emily on her quilting and those pieces are so intricate, detailed and life-like. She certainly deserves her quilts to be displayed all around the classroom at its open-house. She is very kind to share her talent and classroom with those who want to learn and those who are touched by art. It sounds like she loves it so much she will do it as long as she can, and I hope she can do what she loves for a long time to come 🙂

    Your photos turned out lovely. Only one of them seemed blurry but the rest were all great 🙂 Patti was very kind to drive you and I agree she looks very happy in the photo. Being a cheerleader is a great role. A little encouragement always goes a long way, and I am sure your presence and the rest touched Emily 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Hi Marlene! I always love your quilt stories. This post makes it a treat to get to see some of Emily’s work. Beautiful indeed! At the same time, if you have a lot left to learn about quilting, than I am a complete novice! I have seen some of your quilts and all the other incredibly creative things you make, and have to say you do incredibly beautiful work! I love my coffee coasters and cozies! 😘

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Sabine. I need to get back to work at all the projects that are stacked on the list of to-do’s. The weather has unsettled me and I’ve been more in the thinking stage than in the doing. Quilting isn’t quite the passion for me as it is for Emily. I have other passions that lead me astray. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  21. What a marvelous cheerleader you are. These quilts are absolutely gorgeous and to be a part of that must be so incredible as well as providing your own unique talents. I have to say of the ones you showcased, the Valentine quilt was my favorite. What fun to get together with a group of ladies who share your love of a sewing. I have so long to find a group of sewers in my area but have been basically unsuccessful. For now anyway I will just enjoy my little projects in my favorite little sewing room . That alone brings me great joy. I recently quilted, and I use that term loosely, a tote bag that I made. While I was happy with the outcome it was so basic and not very precise. I’m going to continue working on a few small pieces and who knows maybe one day I will be able to step up to the big leagues! The quilts are such works of art and amazing. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for the visit, Jan. It was fun to go see all of her quilts. It took a while to locate the quilt group even though I’m not a “quilter” anymore than I’m a “writer” but it is fun to have someone encouraging me to keep going. The “Valentine” quilt was everyone’s favorite. We are going to help Emily put a scrapbook together of the quilts she has made. She took a bundle of Autumn fabrics home yesterday after helping me organize my fabrics and will make a quilt out of my fabric for me. Then I will have an Emily original. 🙂 I have so many projects in the stack to do that I wonder where to start and the weeds are calling me on this dry sunny day. Have a wonderfilled Easter weekend. Hugs.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Happy Easter weekend to you too. We will be off to a picnic tomorrow. The kids are camping but we decided not to this time. We will meet up-only an hour away. I am bringing a turkey and dessert which I am cooking today. Nice weather for Easter! Encouragers are great, aren’t ? If you quilt half as good as you write….💕👍

        Liked by 1 person

  22. Hello my dearest ! Happy Easter xo
    As you may know, I’m currently traveling and though I thought I’d do catch-up’s with Blogs, the time has just flown. We are leaving early early in the AM from NYC. Alys to California, me back to Canada. Next trip is San Jose in the fall.

    It’s really nice that you’ve joined in with ladies that are so generous with their skills and fun to be with too. The quilts are charming. I’m missing my craft room actually, since it’s something I do most days. But most of all I miss Jim and my kitties. It’s fun to travel and see sites and friends, but I always love arriving home, to our little nest.

    Keep on, keeping on Marlenie-bean, I love seeing what you’ve gotten up to. I’m leaving here with a cold, gah! But doing my best to enjoy our last day xox K

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hope your flight is gentle and your Easter glorious. I do fully understand the missing of you loves and the home. I too loved to go visiting but always happy to be back in my cozy spot. Sorry about the cold. Maybe it will just be allergies to the foreign pollen. We have sun today!!!! :))) First time in forever. Just came in for a short break. Thanks for stopping by for a virtual visit. Giant hugs to you all. M

      Liked by 1 person

  23. Dear Marlene, I’ve been popping by to try and keep up with the news from your world, but I haven’t left comments. It’s been interesting to be so much closer to you physically, but not close enough to walk over for a cup of tea and a chat about life, projects, etc. Which I would have loved, as I’m sure you know. I’ll be leaving Tacoma in two weeks and going back to my cousins; in BC, then I get to start on sorting my stuff that’s in storae and dealing with it all. A daunting prospect, but I’ll be glad when it’s over; my plan is to be done by Auntumn of this year. Yes, I can hear God laughing at me, but that’s ok; I’m used to changes in my plans by now. And it IS rather amusing, after all . . .

    I felt inspired by this post even more than usual. You are so right about the gifts we have and those shared by our friends. I’ve never had a lot of friends, but those I have are deep and lasting. My friend J here in Tacoma is a good example. We were out of touch from 1990 through to 2015 or ’16, when she found me on facebook and got in touch. It was as though we’d had coffee together weekly all those years! And here I am, camping contentedly in their wee travel trailer, living a tiny life for a while (and just what I needed, too).

    Your friend is extremely gifted at quilting and I am awestruck by what she has accomplished in her life so far. And you are gifted in so many ways, too. I admire so much about you, but mone of the main ways you inspire me is the manner in which you meet challenges. We all have them, but so often we whine or find ways to dull ourselves or just give up. I am guildty of all those things myself at times, although I find that after a while I tire of them and do get on with whatever it is that needs doing. Your positive approach has been so helpful to me over the past years, well, ever since I came across your blog, really. And it’s been the same with many other bloggers, too. It’s one reason I call this the Virtual Village. I’ve moved so much in my life that I have no connections anywhere anymore. This is now my real home place, where I find so much that would be available in an old-time village.

    As to your final question, I think that my ability to (most of the time) accept people as they are and to meet them there is valuable. I’ve given this a lot of thought, and I find it’s hard to see a clear answer. There are things about myself that I value, but not everyone sees things as I do. I’m not sure how myt siblings would answer that question about me, or even most of my friends. I’ll have to give it some more thought, I guess.

    Isn’t it nice to have somewhat warmer weather agqain, and all the flowers out? I see them when we drive up to the grocery store and they lift my heart. And while I have not missed the snow and cold of Edmonton at all, and the rain has felt homey, I’m happy to be thinking about drier, sunny times and helping my cousin plant veggies. I haven’t had a garden since 2006 and I have missed that so much.

    I wish you lovely spring days and not too much heat; just enough. Take care, Marlene, and know that you are in my thoughts always. Big hugs to you. ~ Linne

    Liked by 1 person

  24. It is good to see that you do understand one of your own gifts: that of cheerleader. You have many, of course. You are not a woman to spend praise unless it is genuine, so I can see why you don’t consider yourself a skilled quilter. I know hardly anything about quilting, so when I look at your work I am very impressed, but you have challenged yourself to learn it better, and have a sharper eye (pardon the expression – ha ha!).

    In my opinion, another of your skills is honesty. You talk about your health challenges, your frustrations, your simple pleasures with total honesty. You challenge me when I say something you disagree with. And you reserve praise for when it is deserved, like Emily’s quilts. That is another thing to be proud of.

    I can see why Emily deserved a showing of her quilts. It isn’t that there are simply many of them, but they are varied, and the designs are clever as well as appealing. What tiny pieces of fabric in some of them. I practically shudder thinking of the time it would take to put those all together. She is a master.

    One of my skills is that whenever I meet someone, I instinctively begin defining that person in terms of their potential good. It can get me into a scrape, because I’m not suspicious enough, but I’d rather mistake people for good people than the opposite.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m with you in assuming people are mostly good until proven otherwise. I like to see the best in people too and can handle almost anything but blatant dishonesty. It’s my core value. Honesty in word and deed. I have a lot of friends that quilt and are very good at it. Emily didn’t know how good she was at it. Was just having a good time and pushing her comfort zones. I admire that in a person. Praise is empty if not honest. My work is adequate and I do my best. I’m not in it to win prizes or accolades. Just have fun, make friends and play with pretty fabrics. You take beautiful photos and have a big heart and an open mind. Couldn’t ask for anything more. Glad to see you visit. Missed you. Have a good week.

      Liked by 1 person

  25. Aren’t those gorgeous heirloom works of art! My husband’s Aunt Min made many quilts. She died in 1950. I have four of her quilts and most all of her remaining textiles, lace, etc. I treasure each one as the work of art it is and they are in honored, and safe, places in my home.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are lucky to have wonderful quilts from your husbands aunt and I’m happy to hear you appreciate the love that goes into them. I just put all the photos of my friends quilts onto a USB drive to take and have them printed out so we can get her started on a scrapbook documenting their history. She has already given so many away. Quilts are works of art. Like all art, some is more pleasing to the eye. Thanks for stopping by, Cindy.

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  26. How incredibly beautiful!!!! I just love quilts, Marlene!! My sister has dabbled…I have not 😉 For me, I was afraid that I would love it so much that I would not do anything else!! Silly reason, I know 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I do understand. 😉 Very little gets done here and my friend is of an age where much of her other work is hired out now. 🙂 Maybe my day will come soon. I do love her work though. Thanks for stopping by. I’m trying to catch up too.

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