Tuesday, April 29, 2014

A Quilt for Baby Matthew (#1)

I have a lot of friends having babies these days.  The title says "(#1)" because I have a good friend who had a Baby Matthew back in December, and while she is still waiting (so patiently) on her Matthew's quilt, I finished this one first.

This quilt is for the Baby Matthew who was recently born to my friend, Anne.  She is an avid quilter (see her gorgeous quilts here and here and here).  So while Anne is super sweet and easy-going, I really wanted to get this quilt "just right" for her.  I picked out the backing fabric first - giraffes by Ed Emberly:  

Then I picked out coordinating prints to make this quilt from Allison Harris's book, Growing Up Modern.

I just love this book.  This is the fourth project that I've completed from this book, and I'm about to start another!

For the quilting, I intended to do a cross-hatch, but after having problems with way too many puckers on the backing, I decided to quit butchering the poor thing and just leave it with one set of diagonal lines.

The binding is a new DS Quilts from JoAnn's.  I love it!  Of course...

And here's the back in full.  Please, try not to look too close at the puckers.  (Yikes!)

And best of all, here's Baby Matthew and his mama, Anne.  I LOVE how they are looking at each other here!  Congratulations, Anne and Bill!

And here he is again in the bassinet of his great-grandmother.  Isn't he just so perfect?!

Sleep tight, sweet baby...

Monday, April 14, 2014

Quilt Auction Wrap Up

A HUGE "Thank You!" to everyone who participated in our recent quilt auction.  The quilt auction was able to raise $4,610 for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation.  Whether you made a quilt, purchased one, or simply helped us to get the word out, no action or kindness was too small.  I so appreciate all your help and encouragement in helping raise funds for the research that is critical to helping our kids with brain tumors.  Thank you for your generosity!

Are you one of sweet people who was outbid on their favorite quilt? Oh, but you still want to donate your highest bid to the PBTF?  How kind of you!  You're a dear, now please click here.

I do apologize for taking a week or so to update this space with our results.  I've just been trying to catch my breath and get my house (and kids!) back in order. (You'd be shocked at how much Quilt Auction takes over my life!)

We have a very busy summer ahead of us with moving and with my oldest child starting first grade in the fall.  So I'm going to try to do a bit less quilting and blogging and more loving on my family!  It's just a bit shameful that my computer's photo album is full of nothing but quilts for the last two months.  Oops.  I need to capture more moments like this one that happened a few days ago:


This is Charlotte's sister, Marian.  She's about as sweet as they come.  I know it's just the ol' "rag-on-the-head" stunt, but come on, look at that porcelain mug!


And when she saw me taking her picture, it was all, "Cheese! Cheese!" from there on out.

Again, thank you so much for your support and well wishes.  If you have not yet had a chance to donate to the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation, please click on over before you forget.  

Friday, April 4, 2014

The Cost of Cures (not Quilts)

For two days following Charlotte's chemo infusion, I have to give her a shot.  Two shots each week is not as bad as when she was an infant, and I had to give her two shots each day.  Having a sharps container and eight different medications on top of the dresser doesn't exactly make baby's nursery Pinterest-worthy, if you know what I mean.  But when a cancer diagnosis comes a'knockin', we moms throw aside Pinterest dreams; we buckle down and do the hard work that's necessary just to keep our babies alive.


This is hard to write because it's hard to face and most days I prefer just to live in denial. (And because what's the point of worrying about 100 different future possibilities?)  But the drug that Charlotte received this week is her third chemotherapy.  She's been on it for a year. If this one fails her (like the first two did), there aren't that many more to try.  And because of Charlotte's complicated medical history, she has even fewer to try than the "average" child.

So we need more novel therapies.  Drug companies are not going to pay for research, because there's not a market in pediatric brain tumors.  I'm a good capitalist, so there's no bitterness here.  It is what it is.  And the government is interested in using our tax dollars to cure the masses, so very little is set aside for pediatric cancer research (very little = 4% to be precise).  That's why it falls to grassroots fundraising to get support for the necessary research that will bring critical therapies for our children.


At Duke this week, we had a lovely time visiting with Layla and her mom and grandma.  Layla is the child who received this quilt when she was newly diagnosed at only 3-months old.  Just like my Charlotte.  I remember watching her mom and dad carry her infant carrier across the street as they left the hospital from her first chemo infusion.  I wondered then how they put one foot in front of the other just to make it across the street, as their dreams for their firstborn were suddenly, radically altered.  But they did.  And they keep coming to Duke each week to do what's necessary to keep the cancer from spreading, to keep their sweet child on this side of heaven.

Today, 13 more families will get the devastating news that their child has a brain tumor.  Won't you do what's necessary to keep our children alive?  Friends, it's time to up your bids.  This auction isn't about the cost of the quilt. It's about the need for cures.  So please be generous.  Be generous with your pocketbooks.  And if you cannot do that (I understand, I really do), then be generous with your voices.  A HUGE "thank you" to all who have spread the word about this auction via social media.  Only two more days remain. Can we up our bids today?  Can we get the word out even more?

Click here to see all the quilts that are on auction until Saturday, April 5, 2014.

P.S. A note about the closing times: the quilts are set to close at staggering times throughout the day (every half hour) on Saturday, April 5.  This means that if you miss out on your favorite quilt, go ahead and place that high bid on your second or third choice.

Copy of PBTF_5C_horiz_RGB copy
"Someone in your life needs a quilt, and someone in mine needs a cure."
  Charlotte's gRACE for a Cure 2014 Quilt Auction to benefit the PBTF