Archive for May, 2017

A Peruvian Christmas

May 21, 2017

I’m very lucky to have some really great neighbors! Paul is originally from Peru and most of his family still lives there. One Christmas their family decided to visit Grandma in Peru. When his wife, Melissa, saw the poverty there and all the homeless children, she vowed to make a change. For the next year, they planned and saved in order to take their whole family (4 awesome kids; Ashli, Shanda, Alex and Cariella!) to Peru at Christmas but with a twist. In order to help down there, the kids had a choice to make: Christmas for themselves or Christmas for others. They very unselfishly decided to bring some cheer to their dad’s hometown and when word got out about their decision, many, many people donated stockings, fillers, candy, etc to their cause. Quilts Beyond Borders teamed up with them as well and we opened up a new continent with this trip, South America!


On a snowy, wintery day in December, the kids and Melissa came to the house to load up 30 bundles of sunshine to take in their suitcases to some children who really needed the love.

As you can see, we had a good time sucking all the air out of them so more would fit in the suitcases and duffle bags (the best part was using the vacuum to squish them down. They thought that was the coolest thing EVER!!!)


The end result? A stack higher than Cariella!!

Being an empty nester, it was so heartening to have them in my home and to see and feel their excitement about something that they’re not even getting to keep but willingly sharing with someone they don’t even know, have never met and will probably never see again! That’s what Christmas is really all about, right?

Once they arrived in Peru, they found a private orphanage that is only funded with donations, no government funding. All of the children here have been abused and range in age from children barely walking to midteens. Just having visitors made it a special day for them but when they were handed a quilt and a stocking with sweets in it, I’m sure it was the most memorable Christmas they’ve ever had!

It was also memorable for my neighbors. Just like the man who saved the starfish one at a time, they made a difference in a child’s life, one at a time. In a talk at church after they returned, young Alex said, “Skipping our Christmas to help other kids was challenging to do but I felt we should go to Peru and help the kids there. Doing this made me happy and it made me proud helping other kids.”  I hope all of you can share that happiness because if QBB didn’t have you and your unselfish acts of kindness, children all over the world in already heartbreaking situations would never know the kindness of strangers. I like to think of all these quilts as little dots of light scattered throughout the world, little pinpricks of love!

Thank you so much!




Volusia County Homeless

May 10, 2017

This winter Quilts Beyond Borders joined with the Pelican Piecemakers Quilt Guild from New Smyrna Beach in Volusia County, Florida, to work on an initiative to provide quilts to homeless students enrolled in the Volusia County School District.  There are currently more than 2000 homeless students enrolled in school in Volusia County, and while it doesn’t get as cold in Florida as it does in the North, during the winter temperatures regularly dip into the 40s and 50s at night which can be very cold when you are living in a car, a tent in a campground, or a public space.

Pelican Piecemakers Quilt Guild became aware of the desperate plight of these children and asked us to help them achieve an initial goal of giving at least 100 of these kids a quilt via the district’s Homeless Education Liaison.   Between the Guild and the generous donors of Quilts Beyond Borders, I think the final total was closer to 125.   They were very gratefully received, as you can see from some of the thank you notes we received!  (Names of the children have been covered to protect the privacy of the children.)  If the picture is too small to read, click on it to see it larger.

The following 10 quilts were sent to us by Karen Matheson, our Northeast Regional Coordinator and Secretary, who received them from  quilters in the Northeast. To determine the number of the picture, please hover your cursor over the picture:

  • Picture #1: Made by Barbra Buckley, Made by Pat Wildman, Made by Sandy Morawski, Made by Donna Dellacamera and Corrinne.
  • Picture #2: All three quilts made by Frances Fink.
  • Picture #3: Made by Kit Gibby, quilted by Terri Desmond; Made by Jan Bennett, quilted by Karen Matheson; made by Fran Fink.

The next quilts were received from Noreen Fling, our Regional Coordinator located in Raleigh, North Carolina.  Contributors included Rare Quilting LLC of Indiana, Audrey Murphey, Sharon Pudwell and Barbara Fyffe.

Noreen picture 1Noreen picture 2

The following quilts were sent by our Northwest Coordinator, Susan Schmidt in Oregon.

  • Picture 1 –  Quilts made by: Anna Karras; Tomme Fent; Susan Ainsworth; Theola Breaux and Mary O; Carol Egan and Carla Triemer.
  • Picture 2 – Quilts made by:  Barb K and Becky G; Marci R and Rhonda A; Sunshine Quilters of CA; Donna S and Heidi’s Garden Quilting; Linda Fujimoto; Sunshine Quilters

Susan picture 1Susan picture 2

Thes next quilts came to us from Tina Freudenberger, our Vice President, who received them from Mary Verrico Joy McAuley, and Barbara Petersen.


Quilts from Tina

Kim Bell, our Regional Coordinator in Cedar Park, TX, sent us the following quilts:

  • Picture 1: Quilts made by: Sunshine Quilt Guild;  Joy McAuley and Donna Sciandra; Doris Miller; Tammy S and Doris M; Linda Rogde and Jean Clarkson; Doris M – Sunshine Quilters.
  • Picture 2: Second quilt made by Doris M.  Other three quilts made by Trudy Pickle.
  • Picture 3:  The quilt on the left is by Doris M. and Tammy S.  Unfortunately I don’t have the name(s) on the other one.  If anyone can help me identify it, please send me a note or comment below and I’ll be happy to edit this post to give credit where credit is due.  Thanks!

And here’s a picture of a quilt made by one of our Regional Coordinators, Loretta Kelldorf, which came in just in time to make the delivery to the Volusia County initiative.

Loretta 1


Finally, a picture of my friend and fellow Pelican Piecemaker, Dottie Monville, who was the guild’s liaison to the Volusia County School District Homeless Program manager.  Dottie was the one who brought this need to the guild, and she took a real personal interest in this wonderful project, making many of the quilts that the guild donated herself.  We hope to work with her again as future needs arise.


I am grateful for the generosity, enthusiasm, and talent of all the wonderful piecers and quilters that made these beautiful quilts for the homeless students of the Volusia County School District.  I know the quilts are cherished by the children, and their warmth will be appreciated when the nights get cold!



Fat Quarter Challenge for April

May 3, 2017

This month I received 3 quilts for the FQ Challenge, and I believe that all 3 of our quilters are part of the Sunshine Quilt Guild.   The quilts were from Marcia Karns, Houston, TX; Kathy Thomason, Tampa, FL; and Sue Trzcinski, Anacortes, WA.  Our winner for the month, based on a random drawing list, was Cathy Labath from Long Grove, IA.  She sent her quilt in January.  She will receive a $25 gift certificate from the Fat Quarter Shop.  If you get a chance, check out the Fat Quarter Shop because they have such an assortment of items to suit every quilter.

Below are this month’s quilts with a few random pictures of my growing puppies, Jasper and Jake.  I thought it was appropriate since Marcia’s quilt had dogs on it.   (Don’t worry, we wash all the quilts before they are sent on to a child.)

Thanks everyone!  And you still have 5 months to enter our FQ Challenge.

Regards, Tina

From the Northwest & Beyond: Quilts for Syria

May 1, 2017

We started out 2017 by providing 20 regular size quilts and 60 baby quilts for the Syrian Refugees through the Salaam Cultural Museum based in Seattle. They traveled on a container ship full of items to help the refugees located in No Man’s Land, a strip of land between Syria and Jordan. Over 75,000 refugees live there in horrible conditions, not enough tents for people, lack of food and water, poor sanitation to name a few of the struggles there. They will appreciate the quilts since the winters there are cold despite being in the desert.

You can go to each picture and click on it to see who made and quilted each quilt. We provide quilts monthly to this cause. I have met Rita, who runs the organization and I am amazed at all that she does to help them, she is very resourceful and has tireless energy. I know that she is so grateful for all the quilts! Thanks to everyone who is helping us provide quilts to people who are suffering and bringing a bit of joy and warmth into their lives.


Susan Schmidt    Northwest Regional Coordinator