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Okay, here's a story about a block I just made for my "Kresge Kid's Life" quilt. Hope it fits in this space.
During the late 1940s it was very common for families to take “Sunday afternoon rides”. After all, the rationing required during the war years was over and so parents no longer had to conserve tires and gasoline and new cars were coming on the market. It was time to enjoy the benefits of their hard work during the war years and relax by taking that “Sunday afternoon ride” and perhaps ending it with a stop for an ice cream cone.
John, Dorothy and Judy were living in Lexington, Kentucky and it was the perfect area for lovely rides; the area outside Lexington was called “Bluegrass Country” and was the home of famous horse farms. The miles of white-painted fences marking the bluegrass horse pastures were made for gawking, particularly in the spring and summer when flowering trees were in bloom. Tourists were allowed to visit the stables during limited weekend hours.
One day cute little Judy (about seven or eight years old) was leading her parents down a central aisle of a stable at Calumet Farms when she stopped abruptly by a large woven canvas “gate”. A stall had caught her eye because the walls of this stall were covered in dark red padded leather; the leather was very high up the walls and studded with buttons like a fancy chair. I turned to my dad and said “Daddy, this horse has a fancier room than our house!”
My parents caught up with me and the man in the stall with the horse laughed with my parents about what I had said and the man said “Miss, this horse deserves the best room because he is a champion.”
At the same time I noticed a goat beginning to chew on the hem of my dress. I was holding on to the woven canvas gate and tugging at my dress trying to get it away from the goat while the man was leading the horse as he came over to help me. My parents were just standing there. (My dad told me later that he did not move to rescue me because he recognized exactly which horse the groom was leading. The name over the stall was the name of the most valuable horse in Kentucky.)
The groom shooed the goat away and the horse leaned over the gate and sniffed at my curly red hair. I reached up and asked if the horse would bite (the groom said no) so I got to pet the muzzle of Citation, the first million-dollar winning horse in the history of racing.
On the way home my dad said I did not have to wash that hand for a week because it had petted greatness. Of course, my mother vetoed that idea but I was bouncing in happiness for awhile.
Now to share photos of new blocks in the next posting .... stay tuned.
I had to buy an expensive panel that featured all kinds of horses posing in all kinds of scenes to get a pose worthy of the mighty Citation. I wanted to get an image of horse where I could drape a blanket of roses over his withers. This is the best I could do; in my mind Citation is enjoying retirement in the woods imagining the blanket on his back. This horse is not the right color (too red) but I had to use what I could find. LOL Those "roses" are pretty clunky, too. Didn't see any point in trying to create his leather-walled stall. (Too bad my dad didn't have a decent camera in those days.)
(Three cheers for the Chicago School of Fusing and what they taught me about working with Pellon 805! Those posies are from a Kaffe Fassett fabric collection.)
Next photo shows my three blocks created since last posting.
First is my beloved pet parakeet Skeezix who learned to say "Pretty Boy", "Judy" and "Pretty Judy". That last was his own creation (to my delight). Skeets was named for a character in a comic strip named Gasoline Alley.
Bottom is Schoolhouse block which does not really represent Calumet School where I taught for three years; it was a drab beige concrete block monstrosity where I taught from 1963 to 1966. When DH and I took our kids by the building in 1979 to see where their mom had worked it had become a church ... the Columbus Public School System had obviously sold the property because of drop in enrollment in the neighborhood.
I like them both. You have a way of making any pattern an "I Spy" pattern.
Looks like a perfect block for you with purposefully chosen fabrics.
You may have enough kitties for more than one quilt.
Judy, so interesting to see the blocks representing your life. Can't wait to see the completed quilt.
LOVE your interpretation of the winning Citation. Skeezix is also a delight. Poor schoolhouse doesn't have a chance to shine when displayed with such gorgeous blocks! <G>
Cris in MT
First year of teaching fifth graders was great fun. Little did I know.
Second year was rough.
Third year was much rougher because I was "experienced" and so I got the hard core kiddos (never mind the gory details). Suffice to say it was an extremely unpleasant situation with 26 boys, 13 girls, some with police records (this in 1966, mind you) and a principal who was going psycho and only wanted to count spelling books not enforce discipline.
I didn't sign my contract at the end of that year (with DH's encouragement) and went job hunting for something that didn't involve children. That's when I learned COBOL and kept track of truck loads of gravel for the Ohio highway department.
That's why I was not inspired to created a cute or clever Schoolhouse block.
All of the block are great but the horse and roses does take center stage.
So is the next block we see going to be a dump truck?
Not sure if there is enough room but you should consider free motion quilting some writing on your blocks..like pretty Judy under the bird.