One of the things I love most about sewing is how it connects me to my community; in particular two connections have meant a lot to me lately. There is a fabulous fabric shop just a few blocks away from my house, the Corn Wagon, where I've been shopping for years. I adore every single woman who works there. I ask them about their sons going on missions or their sons' girlfriends, and they ask me about my girls and how my sewing project turned out. Its so homey and inviting, and I appreciate my friendships there. I tell them about my projects and they want to see pictures when its done. Its a wonderful place, and if you're in town you should definitely stop by.
About a month after we moved to our house, the Relief Society president announced that there was a lady in the ward with huge amounts of lace she's anxious to get rid of. Vintage lace. My hand shot up before she was even done talking. "Yes, I will happily, happily take some old lace. Please. Yes." And that's how I met Alice, an 82-year-old widow who lives right down the corner from me. I chatted with her after the meeting and set up a time for me to come by. At her house, I spent nearly an hour listening to her tell me about her children and their children, and most of all about her husband who died fourteen years ago. She told me about how they met in high school, at the first assembly the football team jaunted on stage and she whispered to her friend, "I wouldn't mind meeting him!" Her friend answered, "I can help with that - he's my cousin!" They married after graduation when he was on furlough from Germany, and had five children. I saw her pictures.
She sewed all five of her children's clothes, and her own. Wow. She was giving me the lace because she didn't sew any more. I, of course, vigorously thanked her for her generosity, and talked about how much I love sewing and sewing clothes for my girls. The lace would not go to waste! Subsequent Sundays (she works the phone board at the hospital, just like she did during World War II and afterward), we always talk a bit. Then she asked me to come to her house and help her set up her old sewing machine, because after talking to me she wanted to start again! Was I only too happy to help.
We have a sweet friendship, and it means a lot to me to have a friend in the ward. She recently knitted my girls some hats, which they wore to bed (no kidding.) I think she's a bit lonely with her children gone, and no one but her cats as company on some days. Its nice for me to know you can survive having multiple children in quick succession (hers were a year apart!), and it helps me remember to enjoy every day of being with my little girls.