Thursday, December 4

Fifteen years of Crazy Quilting Potlucks!!

Tonight, my dear quilting friends and I gathered for our fifteenth Christmas potluck. It is such a joy to be a part of such a special group of friends. I missed our potluck last year due to icy winter weather but today was clear and fine, just cold. Our group began meeting in February of 2000. It all began when I coordinated a fundraising crazy quilt project at what was then known as Murphy's Landing (now called The Landing). Tonight, we reminisced about how our group started. We meet at the Stans Museum in Shakopee and we asked staff member, Stephanie to take our picture.

 Left to right.....Laura Cloutier, Judith Hentges, Deanna Geer, and me/Sandi Andersen.

Deanna is a Manager of Education at The Landing. I met her in the mid 1990's when I visited The Landing and inquired about volunteering at the site. It's an "open air history museum" and on the site are homes that were once located here in the Minnesota River Valley area. It was like "stepping back in time". It is a wonderful place to visit! And I really enjoyed both volunteering and then working as as interpreter and sharing the history of the homes and the Minnesota River Valley. Judith was Coordinator of Education at the Scott County Historical Society and I think I met her in 1998, during the time we were working on the crazy quilt project. We enjoyed making the quilt and it raised over $2000 that went to maintenance of the homes on the site. One day we were all in the Landing office and got to talking about what fun it would be to continue to make crazy quilting blocks. Deanna and I said it would be great to continue to meet but we couldn't do it at the landing as the houses were too cold in the winter. And Judith said "then let's meet at the Stans Musuem which is the home of the Scott County Historical Society. And so on a very cold night, January 20, I presented a program on crazy quilting to a group of about twenty guests. There was enough interest that we decided to start meeting monthly and that's how the common love of stitching and friendship got our little group started and keeps it going. Some of our original members have passed away, a couple have moved away. There are only about six of us that meet regularly. Laura and my friend, Sharon Ritchart, joined the group a few years ago. For ten years we went to a lovely retreat together in August. I've shared many photos of those retreats. Perhaps I need to do a re-run of those in a future post. :-)
So, anyway, thanks to meeting Deanna and Judith, our group got it's start. I wanted to give them a little gift tonight in remembrance of that and our friendship. I found some pretty decoupaged coasters at HeArt of Henderson and here they are looking at them.........

I gave Judith the set with the ice skates because I had the feeling she had probably gone ice-skating as a kid, but it was the strand of bells that "caught her eye". She said she had a string just like them at home!
The peppermint set reminded me of Deanna and the bits of Christmas words on the design, reminded me of the old print shop that used to be at the Landing. It was a fascinating shop that had a working printing press and school group kids loved it. Sadly, it burned to the ground in 2001.
Back to our crazy quilting group...........we used to do an ornament exchange. I was often lucky enough to win one of Judith's handmade ornaments or she would just make me one as a gift. Last year, she mentioned that it would be fun to see them all so I packed them in a special tin so I could bring them out this year. The little ornament with Santa sleeping the day after Christmas is probably my favorite!

If you live anywhere near Shakopee, MN and have an interest in crazy quilting and stitching, please consider stopping in for a visit. You don't have to want to learn crazy quilting to come. You can just bring any form of handwork as some of us work on crazy quilting but sometimes we work on applique, wool projects, cross stitch, knitting and crochet. We meet the fourth Thursday of the month at the Stans Museum but do not meet in June, July and November. And in December we meet for the all-important Christmas Potluck on the first Thursday of the month! You can call the museum for more information at 952-445-0378. 
It was so relaxing to get together with Judith, Deanna, and Laura! It has been a busy week but when I got home, my husband had good news......Collette will get in for another MRI tomorrow. We will take her to the appointment. Hopefully, it will provide some answers for her pain. 
Time to turn out the lights.......



Anonymous said...

Will be anxiously awaiting the results of Collette's MRI! What a grand group of gals!!! It's been 40 years since we moved from the Twin Cities to our little place outside Houston,MN. I didn't start quilting until '76. There are so many groups with significant longevity, now! My little local group is 30+ years meeting!!! Goes to show how those friendships are very meaningful!!!! Hugs......Doreen

Beth said...

It is so much fun to learn how quilting groups met and even more fun when they have stitched together over a long period of time.

"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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