Thursday, December 04, 2008

Hug Quilt

There is an amazing woman named Miriam in our little town. Full of energy, wise-cracking and fun loving, she runs our local breakfast eatery called the Kountry Kitchen. We have been going in there just about every week-end for 7 years for breakfast. We know several of the regular customers by name or enough to wave and say "Good Morning". It is not a fancy place. But as soon as you walk in, you are greeted with the smell of good food and a welcome smile.

Miriam has a couple of other waitresses and several bussers who are usually high school girls. She cracks the whip on her staff and expects them to keep up with the breakneck pace that she sets. If they want to be lazy, they don't have a job for long. "My way or the highway" is Miriam's credo. She has greeted and fed my grand children from the time they were babies. Apple Juice, warm a bottle, finger food when ready, she is a good grandma.

Miriam was just diagnosed with colon cancer. She has not been able to work in over a month. Miriam's daughter, Sarah, bought the restaurant a few years ago with the intention that her mother would run it. Miriam had worked for the previous owner. Food service is a hard task master. Getting up at 4 AM to open the restaurant, on your feet working all day and close after the dinner crowd is gone. This pace burns you up and can burn you out if you do not have good assistants. We noticed that her daughter had put up a sign a few months ago that she is planning to sell it. This is not a great time to sell businesses or homes in this economy. Miriam and Sarah may have made this decision knowing about the health problems and being uncertain of the road ahead.

Those that miss and love Miriam continue our patronage of the restaurant. Miriam has some great assistants at the restaurant and they are keeping the place going until Miriam returns. I wanted Miriam to know how many peoples' lives she has touched while she has been slinging hash for these years. I planned a rail fence quilt using fall colors and a white signature strip for her friends. I put up two baskets at the restaurant; one with blank blocks and one with "Messages for Miriam" on the other so then could write their private messages on the quilt block and place it face down in the basket. I picked up blocks periodically and have assembled the quilt leaving some blank blocks. There are always last minute folks in our small town. I added a blacky-brown inner border and a wide print background outer border. I plan to quilt it this week-end using Leaf Pile panto and Signature gold thread . I'll use Quilter's Dream cotton select or wool batting; I want the batting to breath so either of those will do fine.

My hope is that this quilt will represent dozens of hugs for Miriam. She will be able to read the comments and know that we all miss her and want her to get well.


Judy Laquidara said...

That was such a nice thing for you to do. I know Miriam will love it and draw much comfort from it. I hope they are able to find a buyer soon.

Lesley said...

What a lovely thing to do Linda, she will treasure it knowing it was made with such great affection.

My life has changed in the last couple of years - some bumps, I retired from quilting, and then I moved to Texas. I'm anxious to see what new adventures await me in the next phase of my life.

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Ramona, California, United States
I started quilting when a quilt shop opened in our little town in January 2004. I have been hooked ever since.

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