Sunday, October 1, 2023


Beware, this is a long heartfelt look back.......with special thanks to my pal Kathy A. from Bethel, PA.  Skip this post if you aren't interested in memory lane thoughts.

I'm always amazed that my needle and thread turned into a magic carpet that has taken me all over the world.  Quilting has added so much to my life, can't imagine my world without it.

My career got a huge boost early on from my pal Doreen Speckmann (sadly probably only you old timers will know who she was.....a tragedy as she was the most talented, kindest, funniest, happiest, person I ever knew.)  In 1997, Doreen invited me to be a guest instructor on one of her famous quilting cruises.  I was fortunate to be invited many times afterwards on both cruises and tours. In 1999, due to the demand for these trips, we both started hosting separate events. 

Sadly, she passed away that year in Ireland while I was on a Greek Isle tour with a group.  No one could ever fill her Berkinstocks, but to my surprise travel company hired me to carry on with future trips.  

My magic carpet has provided an opportunity for me to teach in every state of the US, EXCEPT Mississippi and North Dakota.  The highlights of my travels tended to be the cruises/tours to destinations such as Iceland, Paris, London, Panama Canal, Venice, all over the Caribbean plus Hawaii and Alaska, just to name a few.  I would never have imagined visiting these places!!

This long winded look back is to emphasize that the very best part of my quilting travels were the dear friends I've made along the way!! 💕 I love how we keep in touch and the thoughtfulness of these treasured friends.

Kathy A. just sent me a box of Asian fabrics she had collected and found she no longer had a use for them.  I'm still shocked I'm working in this style....which began because an elderly quilting friend gifted me her entire stash. (Seriously it came in a 10" POD all the way from Illinois!!) A big majority was Asian fabrics.  The pieces I've challenged myself to create using these fabrics are a far cry from my whimsical embellished pieces that were my trademark for many years. Now I'm so energized when I see these theme fabrics as they truly spark my creativity.  

So........ be sure to take the time to reach out to some of your quilting buddies to tell them how much you appreciate their friendship!!


Nancy said...

What a lovely post. Doreen was immensely popular back in the day with her Peaky and Spike designs. You certainly had many opportunities for travel- what a gift. And quilting friends are such good friends!

Carole @ From My Carolina Home said...

I'm starting with you! I appreciate your friendship!

Exuberantcolor/Wanda S Hanson said...

Doreen came to the DeKalb IL guild a couple times and to the other guild I belonged to too. I loved her fuzzy socks and Birkenstocks. It was such a shock that she died so young. I have several of her books.
You were a rising star when I first met you way back in the 1990s. I was always amazed at the detail you put into your whimsical quilts.

Sherrie Spangler said...

Wow, I had no idea you have taught in almost every state and so many countries! And of course I remember Doreen and the shock of reading about her passing.