My final quilt in this year's art quilt series with the theme Literature, as with my other 3 pieces, illustrates a children's book. The idea to use this book came to me in August while I was out with a friend, carrying our plastic pails as we walked the sandy soil of the local blueberry patch. (I wish now I had taken a few photos of the blueberry patch.) The photo below shows one small part of my 12" x 12" mini quilt.
In 2009, the book was ranked 13th of the "Top 100 Picture Books". The characters of Sal and her mother are modeled after McCloskey's daughter, Sally and his wife, Peggy, according the Wikipedia.
I remember, as an elementary school teacher, showing the 1967 film to my classes. (The film was ancient but enlarged the book illustrations, showing each page as the narrator read the story.) His voice sounded so kind and gentle. I can still hear the melody as he repeated the sound of the 3 blueberries Sal would drop in her pail before she ate them up. . . and then dropped 3 more into her pail, over and over again.
The word "onomatopoeia" is one I still like to say. It just sounds wonderful. It means the formation of a word from a sound associated with what is named (like sizzle, clunk, hiccup).
The story is one of mother and child (human and bear) gathering berries on Blueberry Hill for the winter. Sal's mother will can the berries in jars; mother bear and cub will eat them before hibernating. It is an adventure as well as a lesson in concepts such as the seasons and comparison and contrast, to name just two.
As both families head in opposite directions on Blueberry Hill, Sal and the bear cub wander off and loose track of mother. Hearing a sound, they begin following the wrong mother. Both mothers realize they are being followed by the wrong youngster and all are properly reunited. Sal does manage to drop one last berry in her bucket.
I folded 2-1/2" fabric squares diagonally, sewed them in the top corners of the piece. Added the binding front to back. The corners are now pockets that will hold a dowel for hanging on the wall in the Children's Library room at the local library.
An old photo of the Newaygo Carnegie Free Library which opened in 1915.
This year marks its Centennial.
Our town, and many others of various sizes, was a benefactor of the immense philanthropic efforts of Andrew Carnegie. "He believed passionately that wealth should not be squandered by the person who gathered it, but be reinvested into the community to aid the public good." This quote and the one below, come from an article on the subject in Michigan History Magazine.
"From 1883 until 1920 Carnegie underwrote the cost of hundreds of public libraries across the United States (and in some other countries). Grants were provided to small towns, large cities, and some of the earliest suburban areas. In total, the program endowed the construction of 1,688 buildings throughout the U.S., serving a total of 1,419 communities. Michigan--with 61 of these edifices--was a sizable beneficiary of Carnegie's generosity. Of these, 50 still stand and 26 still function as libraries. Their reach extends to all corners of the state, from Detroit in the southeast to Ironwood in the northwest."
It is amazing that he had such foresight.
And it is amazing that our small town has one of only 26 of these libraries still in use in Michigan as a library. It was over the span of 4 or 5 years that our library worked toward much needed renovations. With the efforts of the Friends of the Library and other citizens, funding was obtained for renovations and many citizens, community groups and businesses, and grants helped make it possible.
Although this year's theme is completed, I will continue to make more mini quilts for the library.
Visit the others involved in the Four-In-Art Challenge:
I will be participating in the Christmas Is In My Heart Blog Hop.
It begins November 12, 2015 and my blog date is November 17.
Hope you are able to visit all the bloggers and see what they have
come up with to add heart to their Christmas quilting.
Click the logo to get all the details on dates and giveaways.