COMFORT FROM A COUNTRY QUILT
Have you ever made a quilt? I have. It's one of the most therapeutic
and calming things I've ever done. And I had a huge sense of accomplishment
when I finished.
Both of my grandmothers made quilts, my mama did, and my aunt
Jeannie did. I loved to open that big box at Christmastime knowing it was a
quilt that one of them had made. I was so flattered that after all the time
and energy they had spent on that quilt, they had selected me to receive
it. Even as a young girl, I knew a quilt was a gift I would cherish always.
Back when I was living at home, I remember during the winter months
Mama would set up her sewing machine in the living room over by the window.
At night when we'd all be in there watching TV after supper, Mama would be
over at her sewing machine, making another quilt from the scraps left over
from a dress or blouse she had made for one of us earlier.
Then, when she had sewn all the squares sewn together, she'd lay
the batting on the living room floor, lay the quilted piece on top of that,
and then start tacking it down. When that was completed, she'd sew the
border around it. Then it was finished. All that remained was for Mama to
decide who would be the proud recipient of her precious handiwork which
represented so many hours of love.
I feel very blessed to have received one of Mama's quilts. I sleep
under it every night I'm home. It doesn't match the fancy comforter we bought
in Los Angelos, but it feels better than anything you can imagine. Just
because I know my mama made it just for me.
When Daddy's mother died in 1950, one year before my sister Alice
was born, Mama got the trunk that held all of the quilts, china, crystal,
silverware, and knickknacks that Grandma had collected during her
lifetime. Mama discovered that Grandma's trunk also included a few quilt pieces
that she had started but had never finished. My sister Susie eventually
wound up with those quilt pieces and we all figured she would finish them out
and keep them for herself.
But as only Susie would do, she cut the makings of the quilt into
four squares, had them quilted, put a picture of Grandma McEntire and a
descripion of the quilt ogether, and had them framed for Alice's, my brother
Pake's, and my Christmas present.
That's how thoughtful Susie is. She could have kept the quilt for
herself, but, instead, she shared with her brother and sisters
something so special, which had belonged to a woman none of us had ever met. That's
part of Susie's charm.
That's also the charm of a quilt. Like a mother, it wraps its arms
around you-sosoft, yet so sturdy, and so comforting. In my grandma's time the
sewing of a quilt would bring friends and neighbors together, and in quilting
circles today that lovely tradition continues. Now we live in a time
when so many women do not even have a sewing machine in their home and when
country quilts hang in the fanciest boutiques and galleries selling as
"decorative art." That would sure give my grandma and her circle a good laugh and
more than a few shakes of the head.
Can you just imagine the visiting, the stories, and the fellowship
that have gone on during the making of all the wonderful quilts through the
years? And can you imagine all the children who have been tucked in securely
underneath them in their beds night after night? And us adults too?
That's what you call "comfort from a country quilt." I hope this
book is as comforting to you as my mama's quilt has always been to me. Like a
quilt, this book is made up of small pieces of material-some of my favorite
stories, memorable experiences, and more than a few opinions-written, rather
than sewn, from the stuff of my life. I have stitched these pieces together
with my sincere hope that you will find the "quilt" of a book friendly,
warm, and enjoyable, something you can turn to for comfort and entertainment and
for sharing with friends and family.
So grab your favorite quilt, wra up, get comfortable, and enjoy.
From me to you.
TULSA TIME by Don Williams
I left Oklahoma driving in a Pontiac
Just about to lose my mind
I was going to Arizona maybe on to California
Where the people all live so fine
My baby said I was crazy
My moma called me lazy
I was gonna show'em all this time
Cause you know I ain't no fooling
I don't need no more school'in
I was born to just walk the line
Livin on Tulsa time, livin on Tulsa time
Well you know I've been through it
When I set my watch back to it
Livin on Tulsa time
Where there I was in Hollywood
Wishing I was doing good
Talking on telephone line
But they don't need me in the movies
And nobody sings my songs
Guess I'm just wasting time
Well then I got to thinking
Man I'm really sinking
And I really had a flash this time
I had no business leaving
And nobody would be grieving
If I went on back to Tulsa time
I'd like to thank Danielle once again for these lyrics and the foward!
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