When I’m not playing pickleball………….
After many, many years of working for the Western Area Power Administration (Department of Energy), I retired on January 1, 2000. I had survived the new millennium transition (remember Y2K) and embarked on a new chapter of my life. As a retirement present to myself, I bought a new sewing machine and thus began my quilting hobby.
I had sewn many of my clothes when I was young but stopped when my taste in clothing exceeded my sewing abilities. So when I was retired and had more time available, I taught myself to quilt. Since then, every family member and any friend who got married, had a baby, retired, moved away, got sick or any other excuse I could come up with - got a quilt. When I first started making quilts, I need a specific purpose for the quilt. For example, a neighbor was having a baby. With that in mind, I would choose color, fabric, design and make a quilt for the new baby. Now, however, I just make quilts and they seem to always find the perfect home. The first time this happened, I had just finished a quilt that I didn’t know what I was going to do with. Then a Facebook friend – who I had never met – was being treated for breast cancer and had financial challenges. Someone sent up an auction to help raise funds to offset her medical expenses. Aha – a home for the new quilt! Since then, I’ve donated several quilts to different charities for their own fundraising. I get to make a quilt – they get to make some money.
When I’m not playing pickleball or quilting, you’ll find me on the golf course, in my garden, hiking, travelling with my 20-year partner, Larry, or with my nose in a book. Which brings me to the next great interest in my life – books, reading, literacy, Libraries! I’ve volunteered at the Jefferson County Public Library Foundation for 15 years. I’m the Treasurer of the Board of Directors, I work at the Gift/Book Shop at Belmar Library, I work at most of the book sales (ever been to one of the Whale Sales at Jefferson County Fairgrounds?). When I was a kid, we were a family of 10 and there was no money for entertainment. However, I could walk the mile to the neighborhood library every week and get all the books I could carry home. I lived vicariously through the characters in those books and that experience cemented my appreciation for libraries today. (There’s my public service announcement!)
The best thing about being retired is that there is plenty of time for all these activities and I can still play Pickleball several times a week…..so much more fun than those boring exercise classes I used to go to!
Attached are a couple of pictures of some of my favorite quilts…By the way, I’m not the only Pickleball quilter out there…Jan, Pat, Wanda – and maybe more!