Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Assignments Part 2

One of my teaching assignments for Costa Rica is reverse applique. Since Costa Rica is home to over 100 species of butterflies, I would like the learning project to be an appliqued butterfly block, which I can then turn into a pillow cover (another of my teaching assignments).
I spent the past couple of weeks looking through my quilting books for just the right butterfly pattern.  Nothing seemed to be what I was looking for, and I thought I would have to design something myself.  That's when I looked out my kitchen window and saw my shepherd's hook.  As you can see from the picture (even though it is slightly blurry), the design was right under my nose the whole time.  Quilting designs truly are everywhere--we simply have to keep our eyes open!  

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


The trip to Costa Rica is a teaching trip, so each member is responsible for teaching one or several aspects of sewing and quilting.  Last year's team taught many of the basics, so this year, we are building on those.  From the list of possible topics, I chose (and was assigned) the following:  hand applique (specifically reverse applique), making pillow covers, and finishing the edges of a quilt--with binding or prairie points. 
In my years of teaching, I have taught all of these skills, so it's just a matter of looking in my file cabinet for the lesson plans I have kept.  There is something to be said for hanging on to those papers throughout the years!!!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Starting to Learn

I have borrowed several books about Costa Rica from my neighborhood library.  The more I read them, the more I get excited about my upcoming trip!  It looks like a BEAUTIFUL country.  I can't wait to see the birds and butterflies that make Costa Rica their home!  And the mountains and volcanoes ringing the Central area where we will be staying!  I definitely want to shop for a better camera.
I also checked out a couple of Spanish language books and I have realized that I DO know a few Spanish phrases!  I can say "good day", "how are you?", "my name is," "please," "thank you."  I still need to practice "where is the bathroom?", but I'm good at "Hola"--mainly because my granddaughter's favorite books are all about Dora, the Explorer!
Can't wait to learn more!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

To-do list

I have made my to-do list for my trip to Costa Rica.  I'm starting to check things off the list.  My passport has been renewed and I have an appointment to bring my immunizations up to date.  One-half of my trip payment has been made, so I am now truly committed!
Our team leader has been in contact...I receive several e-mails from her each day.
A recent one contained a link to a crash course to learn the Spanish language.  I know French, so I thought that Spanish wouldn't be that much different.  But looking at the vocabulary list of sewing terms that I received, I'm not so sure.  It is a good thing that teaching sewing/quilting is mostly visual...I don't think I'll learn a lot of Spanish in the few short weeks before the trip!  (I was also told that there will be a translator along...that's a good thing, too!)

Friday, January 4, 2013

New Year, New Adventures

I've decided that, for me, this is the year for adventure.  My blog will be my adventure journal, mainly because it's faster to type in my thoughts than write them down on paper. 
Probably my biggest adventure of the year will be my trip to Costa Rica in March.  From March 1-March 9th I will be part of a MOST ministries team that will be teaching sewing and quilting to two groups of women in Costa Rica.  The hope is that, through the handcrafts they produce, they will have income for their families.
Why am I going?  Here's the story:  Back in September, while researching an article I was writing on quilt -related travel, I discovered the website of 2 American ladies (who now live in Costa Rica ) who hold quilting retreats at their villa.  The thought of going somewhere like that for a quilting retreat intrigued me, and the more I thought about it, the more I wanted to do it.  I also thought that the first two weeks of March seemed like an ideal time to get away from Michigan.  I made an initial contact and also talked to a couple friends about the trip. Life got busy and the retreat idea was put on hold for a couple of months.  Right after Thanksgiving, I put out an e-mail to quilting friends who might be interested.  I also contacted the CR ladies to see if they had openings in March.  They were all booked up until mid-April and only one or two friends seemed interested in foreign travel.  Then came an announcement in our church bulletin:  MOST ministries was forming a team of quilters to go to Costa Rica the first week of March...they were looking for a few more people for the team.  I couldn't believe what I was reading!!!  I truly believe that God was telling me to yes, go to Costa Rica in March, but don't go to play...go to teach and use my skills.  How could I say no???
It didn't take me long to find out more and fill out my application.  March 1st is not very far away--I'm already excited! Definitely an adventure!