What a GREAT DAY!!! For the record:
I registered 33 folks For National QOV Sew-In Day to come to the VFW Post 488 in Cedar Rapids, IA from 10-4 yesterday. Use of the room was donated to us by the VFW, the Women's Auxilary fixed a lunch for us ($7/each) ... and the weather held! We had quilt kits, pillowcase kits (I know pillowcases are not necessary but our Vets and us LIKE them), Panels, Jelly Rolls & Strip Kits, Signature Blocks. We had an assembly line - OR folks could work on their own.
23 of the 33 Registered came
3 called in sick
8 NEW people came
8 Quilt kits were started (3 tops completed on the assembly line)
5 Panels taken home to complete to tops
1 Jelly Roll and 2 Strip Kits taken home to complete
6 Pillowcases completed; 15 Pillowcase Kits taken home to complete
4 NEW Members and 1 member renewal
Our Area Coordinators (2 of them) stopped in to see us. One spent a great deal of time talking to each individual person there!!!!
2nd best part: Lady saw the announcement in the paper for our Sew-in and sent her daughter to see us. The daughter's Grandfather received a QOV about a year ago. The daughter showed up with a fabric donation of 38 YARDS of fabric (in 6 pieces).
The VERY BEST part: As I was getting in my car to leave at the end of the day, a gentleman and his young son (12 ish) stopped me and profusely thanked me. Said he was thrilled when he walked in for lunch there and saw the group working. He bragged on the dedication, focus and love that exuded from the group as they were going about their sewing. He suggested we come once a month to do this as it was so heartwarming! At one point, his son voluntarily said "QOV is AWESOME!!" ................
For ME, this "QOV Mission" of ours is not about how many quilts we award - but how we touch the Veterans and the community. While I'm certainly proud of the 428 quilts that my group has in process over the last 2-1/2 years, and the 325+ quilts that we have presented, I'd much rather look at it as 325 VETERANS who we have personally touched with a quilt - and the numerous Veterans and families who see and understand that they personally are the recipients of our pride, love, and thankfulness for our freedom.
At times we are all frustrated and worn out by our tasks --- this one gentleman and his son yesterday washed all that frustration away, recharged the batteries, and again defined the purpose of our journey. We are not just making quilts -- we are ALL making a difference in our communities and changing lives.
What an enormously humbling experience. What a great day!
THANK you for your ear!
QOV Longarm Coordinator
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Quilts of Valor® Foundation