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Friday, June 3, 2011

Finding Normal

I'm having a productive Friday!  After some difficult days, we are finding a rhythm while preparing our home and our hearts for days without our middle child.  His absence is a tangible thing...we stop mid-task and remember and laugh about something Sam said or did.  Or we sit and listen to the silence and cry some.  It's all good.  He is well loved and will be well remembered.

I'm slowly making my way back into the sewing room.  Other things have had priority this week like some much-needed deep cleaning, some gardening (corn, beans, tomatoes, okra, zucchini and zinnias :-D), going through Sam's things and determining what is "keeper" and what should be saved or donated. 

But my sewing room calls me! :-)  I have a couple of t-shirt quilts, a couple of memory quilts, and three pieced quilt tops (I have the blocks, so I design the setting and sew them together) to do for other people, and I really need to get them done this month.  And as I'm preparing them, I'm thinking about how I can use Sam's t-shirts and dress shirts for quilts (Bonnie Hunter wouldn't waste them!! LOL).

Speaking of Bonnie, she sent me the sweetest email expressing sympathy over Sam's passing, and I had to ask her, "Can I use Sam's boxer shorts in a quilt!?" :-D

TWENTY-FOUR pairs! 2 Dozen! AND...About 18 of them were on the floor.  LOL  We've laughed while cleaning his room.  If he hadn't died, we'd have "killed him" over the dust and debris and multiple piles of laundry! LOL  Washing his clothes gave me much solace, sorting as I went along into "Will will grow into these," goodwill, and "going into a quilt" piles.

Bonnie says the boxers can be used...I'll have to watch for the thinner parts (in the seat and inner thighs :-D), but if old feedsacks and recycled clothing from eras past have lasted, there's no reason his boxers won't work.  I've had in mind a while to do something with the boxers he outgrew (and those Jeff rips out along the way as well! :-D), and my idea was to call the quilt, "Boxer Rebellion." LOL  I have plenty to work with, I think, for a good-sized quilt.

Bonnie's note was one of literally hundreds.  Thank you all SO very, very much for the sweet cards and emails and blog posts....I'm just overwhelmed by the love and sympathy. 

And someone got a quilt block thing going for me....

Hearts!!
I've gotten eleven heart blocks in the mail!! When we realised Sam was gone home, I turned into Jeff's arms and whispered, "He was the son of my heart!" -- So much like me, outgoing and always laughing and quipping. With me all the time, self-professed on his facebook profile a "momma's boy." :-D ...

How absolutely lovely and perfect the hearts are!  Words cannot express my joy and overwhelming gratitude at such an outpouring by you all.   Without a doubt, you have helped me immeasurably through this tragedy, and my blessings are too many to number in it!!

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
9 Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. 10 For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to the one who falls when there is not another to lift him up.

Thank you all so much for lifting me up!


Blessings,




Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of His saints.
Psalm 116:15 (NKJV)

27 comments:

StitchinByTheLake said...

Mary Lou you have so been on my heart - it was a joy to see the heart blocks. I didn't know that was being done and I'm sorry I didn't get to make one for you. Jerry and I leave in the morning for a two month mission trip that we do each summer. But I will continue to pray for strength and grace and laughter mixed with your tears. I am so in love with the Boxer Rebellion quilt idea. :) How perfect is that! blessings, marlene

Paula said...

I would love to send you a heart block. Please send my the size and color preferences. You've been in my thoughts and prayers.

B-Z-Quilting said...

Mary Lou, I am sending prayers and more prayers your way. God's mercies are new every morning, praise His name for that. I am praying that you find His tender mercies to get you through the day. I am going to email you to get your home address if you don't mind. I am making something for you, not a heart block because I didn't know about that, but some other little "quilty" something. Hugs.

Quilt Hollow said...

Just this morning I woke and wondered when we would get to see your next post...you sure know how to put into words what I would never be able to do. You even give me a chuckle through tears. I had no idea a heart block thing was started. I did receive many people asking for your address so they could send cards.
Hugs to you and your family Mary Lou....I'm so glad to have blog met you!

Crispy said...

It's so lovely to see you posting Mary Lou, you have been on my mind every day. I'm so thrilled that someone started a heart quilt drive for you. If you could send me the size of the blocks being sent and your address (which I thought I saved but lost thus the card didn't get sent to you), I would love to send one too :0)

Crispy

Mary L. said...

I'd also like to send you a heart if you'll let me know what size, etc. I happy to know you are finding such comfort in the memories and each other. I've saved and used some of DH's cotton boxers so know it works. Love your proposed name!
Hugs

LynCC said...

"Boxer Rebellion" :D

Most Excellent.

pcflamingo said...

I'm almost done with a quilt made out of the clothing of a police officer that was killed in the line of duty. It's for her young son, and many of the blocks are stars.....and hearts. I hope that when you hold those heart blocks that were sent to you, up to your heart they will help heal the broken pieces of your heart.

Mrs.Rabe said...

I have been praying for you!

I can't wait to see "Boxer Rebellion!" What a wonderful name!

Thank you for the example you are setting for us all - sorrow, yet joy, tears and laughter!

I can't think of a better way to honor Sam's memory.

Deanna

Sarah Craig said...

Hi, Mary Lou! I was so glad to see your new blog post today - and I'm so glad you are starting to get the heart blocks! You remain in my prayers each day....

I love the idea of a Boxer Rebellion quilt!!

Ann Marie said...

When i first seen the line of boxers, i was going to leave a comment telling you to make a quilt out of them, then i read to the part that , that is what you have planned. the quilt will look gorgeous, and i love the name you have picked already. will keep a look out for the finished project. i know that finished quilt will be warmer than all others, because when you are wrapped up in it, you will be wrapped in Sams loving arms even more so than everyday.

Kathie said...

what size are the blocks I would love to make one for you too
Kathie

Reenie said...

Mary Lou,

I just read this about your son and my heart is broken. All my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

wendyytb said...

I am new to your blog. My heart goes out to you and your family. It seems that you have found your strength and your comfort...in your family, friends and in your faith. God Bless you!

Shelley said...

Mary Lou, it is so good to see you back on here! I have been so worried about you this past week! David and I talked about you and your family often...we know first hand how shocking it is to lose a family member that quickly. I think the Boxer quilt will hold much healing for you and comfort when it's done. It will be like being wrapped around you again. This may sound strange but we are all receiving strength from you through the strength you are showing us and through the witness of your faith. God Bless, Shelley

Lori said...

Whatever "normal' is will be a new normal for you. It must be difficult to continue forward in life.

MariQuilts said...

beautiful post...some more tears fell as I read it.... my heart is with you.

Karen said...

Mary Lou I have been thinking about you and praying for you and your family. I look forward to see a boxer quilt. May you find strength and comfort in the days ahead.

Debbie J said...

I'm so sorry for your loss! I lost my middle child too, but at age 2 to a heart defect.

I made a quilt that incorporated my youngest son's boxers and jeans. You can see it here: http://homemakingdreams.blogspot.com/2007/10/gentlemens-quarters.html

So, by all means use the boxers! It will be a treasure.


Again, please know that you are in my heart!

Tonya said...

I am glad that you have the joy to laugh amongst your tears while cleaning his room. I, like you, have made many a memory quilt. But to make one of my own child and his clothing...that will be oh, so hard!

Anonymous said...

Mary Lou! How precious to think of making a quilt from Sam's boxers! My very first full sized quilt was made from the left over plaid cuttings from the Jockey plant in Cynthiana! I made a trip around the world quilt! Wow, precious memories. Sam would love it. Blessings and prayers. Becky at bngwingo@yahoo.com

Mindy said...

Boxer Rebellion!!! I LOVE IT!! Still praying for you all. This was our last week of school and it should have been a productive week, but having the schedule off just messed me up. If I quilted, I'd send you a heart square. Since I don't quilt, IF I did send you a heart square, it'd probably not be square and it might make you almost say ugly things while you were trying to get to fit with the others. I don't think I want to do that to you. I'll just keep praying, instead.

QuiltSue said...

It must be very difficult for you all at the moment, but I am still thinking of you.

I'm sorry I didn't know about the heart blocks, otherwise I would have sent one.

Janet O. said...

I am new to your blog and have been deeply touched by the story of your son. Your faith in the Lord is shown in your ability to move forward and laugh as well as cry. I just lost my best friend 2 weeks ago and I know the hole it has left in her family, but their faith sustains them, too. It is evident that you know there is a source of peace, even through our pain. God bless you--and I would be happy to send a heart block if you want to share dimensions and an address.

Gmama Jane said...

Mary Lou, somehow I missed your post and the note about your son. I was cleaning out my inbox and not by coincidence (I believe its God being anonymous) I found your last post and the incredibly sad news of Sam's passing! As I have read thru your posts I am so inspired by your faith and your strength. God promises his strength just when we need it. I had to laugh about his messy room and wanting to kill him if he hadn't already gone home!! That is the kind of humor our family is blessed with and what sustains us in crisis. You will be in my thoughts and my heart. In fact, I doubt if I will sleep well tonight for thinking of you and your family. I've lost so many close friends this past year and my heart aches for each one. I don't know you personally but somehow by reading each other's blogs on a constant basis I feel like we have a circle of friends. I would love to add a heart block if you would please send me the block size.
My Deepest sympathy,
Gmama Jane Hillis

justkellyhere said...

Mary Lou, You and I don't know each other but I know several kids who loved your son. I am so sorry for your loss.
I am not a quilter, but I had quilts made from my late husband's shirts for my daughters (now ages 9 and 5). They treasure their "Daddy Blankets" and I do, too. Each time I see them I can see him wearing those shirts and it makes me smile.
Finally, I know you know this one... but Romans 8:28 was my mantra and salvation as I grieved. Knowing that my husband's life (and death) served multiple purposes in God's plan, even bigger than my own grief, really did make it easier to bear. My heart goes out to you!

Barb said...

I hope you'll send me the size for a heart block. I've been thinking of you and wondering how you are doing.
It's been crazy here and I've been hit and miss with the blog world.
xo