I'll start off by going on the record saying I know how fortunate I am that I have the time to dedicate to the sewing I do. My work is part time and my kids are of the age that I don't have to hover over them while they're doing schoolwork. Or supposed to be doing schoolwork. I do have to do that kind of hovering. But my twenty minutes a day pledge can easily become hours, especially if a crippling snowstorm closes down the area or a giant sporting event is taking place, as both did this weekend. I decided to start with the tasks I like least to try to make progress; saving the fun for last, so to speak. So I grabbed my grandson's quilt that has been sandwiched for over a month and went for it.
I guess Beth's isn't the only tractor quilt with a story. Here's mine: simply put, my grandson, Kal-El, adores tractors. Kal's family lives in a cute little house surrounded by a cornfield. It's not theirs. But they're rural dwellers and farms are more familiar to him than Nani's 'big city' life. I didn't make him a quilt when he was born because my daughter asked for cloth diapers instead. When he was a little bigger, I made him one with a robot theme because he seemed to like them. Last spring, when we found out #3 was coming, I told him, "Kal, you're getting so big, it's time for a new quilt. Let's go to the fabric store and you can pick out what you like." Kal got very quiet, looked down and shook his head. I asked him "Wouldn't you like a new, bigger blanket?". Again he said no. I said okay, but tell me when you want one. He said, "Never! I like my robots!" I realized what he was thinking and after mommy and I reassured him he could keep his robots and have a new one too he got excited about choosing fabric! We went to JoAnn's and I sent him off with Philip, with instructions that Philip was merely to watch him, help him carry bolts and NOT try to talk him into Star Wars. Kal's choice alone. It was only minutes later that Kal came around the corner to us, carrying a big bolt of John Deere flannel by himself, and wearing the biggest grin a little boy could have. We added the pre-printed broadcloth panels and I pulled the solids from my stash. I covered one of the printed 'blocks' with a yellow piece I appliqued his name on. The original flannel he chose is actually the back. It was my plan to have it finished before Pippin came, but when that deadline passed I set my sights on his 4th birthday (Dec. 21) or, if I didn't make that then Christmas (because 4 more days would really change everything). Right. Well, Kal's Tractors became #1 for DaGMT. I got it half quilted Friday while I was still stuck in snow, but that doesn't count because it wasn't February yet. I finished the other half Saturday afternoon in about two hours. Yesterday, (Sunday) I stopped at Hancock after church to pick up a 1/2 yard of a different JD print to make the binding. What should have taken 10 minutes became an hour and a half because their power went out and killed the registers. I already had the fabric cut (2 pieces actually, since I grabbed a piece for Pippin's binding, too, since his quilt is on the list) so I waited with 50 other people 'til they got working again. A stop at Taco Bell for the two teens that had to wait in the car (sorry, guys) and it was 3:00 before we got home. After an episode of "Cutthroat Kitchen" and a chat with hubby I finally headed for the sewing room. My plan was to have the binding made and machine stitched to the front by kickoff so I could hand stitch the back down throughout the Super Bowl. At 4:30 I started cutting strips. I plopped into my hand-sewing chair in the living room just seconds after kickoff at 6:30. Except for one break to stretch, one to eat a couple of crackers and ALL of Bruno Mars performance (I mean---WHOA!) I didn't stop until it was done. We Skyped with the kids for a bit during the game and DH showed Kal what I was working on~ "MY QUILT! MY QUILT!"
Happy GettingSoBigYou'reABigBrotherAgainBirthdayChristmas!, Buddy. Nani loves you.