February 18th, 2008

A Year of Quilting

At the start of 2007, I began a year-long service project of quilt-making for orphans and families in Zambia, Africa. My mother had recently returned from a trip there with Mothers Without Borders, and I was doing some fund-raising in preparation for my own trip that summer. She had our family create two quilts during Christmas break of 2006, and once we were finished, held one of the quilts tightly as she told us how grateful the families would be when they received them.

Not having experienced Africa myself, it was hard to imagine how something so simple could be seen as so useful and important.

But then I experienced Africa. I saw firsthand the widespread poverty. I saw the pride held in the simplest of possessions—families grateful for a chair, a bicycle, or a pillow.

Luckily, the quilt-making process proceeded much more quickly after my trip to Africa with the help of my then-wife-to-be. Once the year ended, we had tied 33 quilts. Needless to say, it’s nice to have our living room back.

We’ll be shipping them off to Africa in a few months on the next boat shipment.

This year’s project: beanies for the infants in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit in Lusaka, Zambia. We’ve already knitted 75.

5 Responses to “A Year of Quilting”

  1. Cameron
    February 18, 2008 at 3:49 pm #

    Awesome! Good work, and congrats on accomplishing so much.

  2. DougT
    February 19, 2008 at 6:50 pm #

    It’s amazing how good you get to feel doing such simple things, when doing them for others. Isn’t that a testimony to the teachings of Christ?

    We (I’m speaking mainly of males) can get caught up so much in what we may consider higher matters, and ignore the important heart issues.

    Good post.

  3. Doug Bayless
    February 20, 2008 at 11:03 am #

    That’s seriously a neat way to prevent idle hands lol.

    How do you make beanies? (I’ve worked on quilts before but never seen anybody knit a beanie). How many are you trying to make?

  4. Connor
    February 20, 2008 at 1:43 pm #

    How do you make beanies?

    You’ll need yarn (duh), a loom, and a hook. The hook/loom can be purchased at almost any craft store around the valley. Here’s an example of a circular loom.

    Once you’ve got those supplies, follow these instructions to get going. They’re super easy, pretty fun to switch up colors and sizes, and like you said, a great way to prevent idle hands. My wife and I usually put in a movie while we work on them.

  5. Johnna
    March 4, 2008 at 2:33 pm #

    very cool, Connor!

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