Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Gift











I'm joining Rebecca of A Re-purposed Life for a Birthday Blog Party.  Her assignment was as follows for those of us who wished to join:

" Just to explain again how the Birthday blog Party works, you link up your post at the end of this post. Each party guest has made a gift for someone special in their life and is posting it on their blog and explaining why and what they made... "

So here is the Gift I made for that special person in my life and presented this Christmas and what the story is behind it.  A couple of years ago I began creating Bohemian Fabric Art entirely by hand, Carpet Bags in particular.  I did it to feed my Soul and I was inspired by other Fabric Artists that I admired... but I had no training and I don't know how to use a sewing machine or patterns, so it seemed like an impossible task and a crazy idea.  But it worked out and soon my little bags had admirers who wanted one of their own.  Working entirely by hand means this is a very labor intensive venture and so I'm not the most prolific Artist... sometimes I'm 'on' and sometimes I'm 'off'... since I use Vintage materials and Antique Jewelry it is also a sacrificial expense until they sell... and therefore only a few bags each year could be made and that meant a waiting list.   Well, I have this very special Friend named Kathie who has been there for me and my Family during many trials and tribulations we've come up against throughout the years.  In particular when we became custodial Grandparents of two of our Grandchildren she made a special promise to our Daughter that she would help us to raise these precious children of hers that had to be given up and entrusted to us... and she has... faithfully... as if they were her own... and they spend many a weekend at 'Aunt' Kathie's and with her extended Family... because over the years we have all become "Family" in the truest sense of the word.   And how do you repay such loyalty and love in action?  Well, you can't really, can you.  There is no Gift I could ever present that compares to the Love bestowed upon our Family by this Friend... and especially the Love she has showered on our two Grandchildren.  But she had told Friends and Relatives that she loved these bags I was making... and she hoped one day that I might make her one.   I had made one of my first bags for my Mom, since her picture graces my label and she has always been a Bohemian inspiration to me and had encouraged me when others scoffed about my vision to become a Fabric Artist.  I had made some bags for myself as I perfected my craft, I initially never intended to sell any... but over time as demand dictated I had made bags for those who commissioned my Art and appreciated my work... but it was a VERY slow process... everyday life consumes much time... and so I'm ashamed to say, Kathie's bag never seemed to manifest and frankly I really didn't think she cared that much one way or the other about owning one of my little bags.   But apparently she did... and she persisted... and it occurred to me that perhaps THIS WAS THE GIFT... the one that to her at least would be appreciated enough that it would delight her in the same way that her Love for our Grandchildren delights me??!  I had tried other ways of repaying her kindness of coarse... but it was somewhat of an epiphany that this was the Gift meant to be exchanged... because my bags are a labor of Love and sacrificial in much the same way as her looking after the Grandchildren is a labor of Love and sacrificial...  it takes time you see, quite a bit of time... and our time is the most precious and priceless of Gifts... so anything that spends our time doing for another is giving all that we've got... TIME... And so I got very excited to choose the bag that I had made that would be hers... it had to be a special one that took a lot of time and expense to create and yet would compliment her tastes and sensibilities... she's not quite the Bohemian that I am and so her request had always been to have a bag without as much Boheme as most of my bags display *smiles*... something toned down a bit... and so this one, this was THE ONE... I just knew it... and I knew she wouldn't be expecting it... after all, she'd waited so long and so patiently for me to get around to her bag...   And so THIS Christmas it was time... and I made certain it was wrapped as special as the contents inside... and she LOVED it... and I'm so glad and touched that she did... and she's showing it all around and very proud of her bag made by her quirky Bohemian Friend.  And recounting this private Story has been more emotional than I realized it would be, because it's deeply personal and I never imagined I'd have reason to tell it... until Rebecca's Birthday Blog Party request caused me to think about this recent gift I had made for someone SO Special and the significance of The Gift.  So now the waiting list grows longer as those she's showing her bag to now want one too... and it will mean longer waits since I'm still not the most prolific Artist *wink*... but that's okay, because this Christmas the best gift I GOT was the Joy my Special Friend displayed at my simple little Gift... a Gift that pales in comparison to the Love she's shown my Family and I for years... and we could never, ever, repay her for... because her Gift to us is truly PRICELESS... and I'm Blessed to have such a Special Friend... we Love you Kathie...    Dawn... The Bohemian 

9 comments:

  1. Hi Dawn
    Thank you so much for coming to my birthday party and sharing your inspirational gift with us. This is why I wanted to do this, this is such a priceless gift to me... your story of love. Thank you, you have made my birthday. Much love to you and your beautiful family.
    Blessings
    Rebecca
    PS Love the Bohemian look! Your bags are amazing and I can see why they are in demand

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  2. Hi Dawn, Love your bag, it's so pretty!!!
    Blessings~~ Daphne

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  3. Dawn, what a sweet gift and oh my are you super talented or what. Your bags are a work of art no doubt. Have a wonderful Christmas week and thank you so much for your sweet comment today!

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  4. Dawn!
    What a wonderful friend you have and what a perfect tribute to her! I am sure she will treasure this forever, as your bags are FANTASTIC!!!

    Not only are you a great sewing queen, you have such a wonderful way of writing it all down!~~

    Hope you and your family have a wonderful holiday season!!

    ~Vanessa

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  5. I can't decide which is more beautiful, the bag or your tribute to your precious friend. I know she will be blessed by receiving both. Have a wonderful holiday!

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  6. Having a friend like this in your life is much like the tapestry used in your wonderful bags. The warp and weft of lives brought together by love creates a bond that cannot be broken. You are both lucky ladies to have each other and your g'children are blessed by y'all as well.
    Lovely story and I thank you for sharing such a personal one.
    Debbie

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  7. Hi Dawn! What a beautiful tribute to your friend...and such a beautiful bag too!! Thanks for sharing. xokathee

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  8. Oh Dawn,

    That is such a pretty bag and such a wonderful story of how it came to be. Your friend is lucky to have you in her life, just as I know you are lucky to have her in yours.

    Enjoy the rest of your weekend,
    Judy

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  9. I want to buy all of these bags!! DO you have a store? Please,please call or email me! crainecdc@aol.com, many thanks-cindy

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A life touched by God always ends in touching others. - Erwin McManus

I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars. - Og Mandino (1923-1996)

For creativity to flourish one should try to look at everything as though it were being seen for the first or the last time. - Quote from "A Thousand Paths To Creativity" by David Baird

Is what I'm about to say an improvement on silence? ~ Galen Pearl