Quilting In Memory Of

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When I was a teenager I spent countless hours with my Aunt learning how to quilt. She taught me how to measure, cut, and sew pieces of material together to make a beautiful piece of art that doubled as a blanket.

My Aunt was diagnosed with cancer at some point in her life. I can’t remember how many years ago it was but I do remember that she resolved to beat it. She fought and battled for many years to overcome the disease. In the end, she lost the fight and passed away a little over 5 years ago. To this day my Aunt is the closest person I have lost in my life and I miss her greatly.

When it came time to clean out her house I was asked by my cousins if I wanted her quilting supplies. I immediately said yes and soon my garage was filled with tubs upon tubs of material, batting, books, and other accessories.

Today, half of the tubs reside in my garage while the other half takes up space in my office and my downstairs front room. Every time I look at them, I think of my Aunt and I smile, remembering the times I spent with her over the sewing machines.

I don’t quilt as often as I should. It will probably take me my entire lifetime to go through the massive amounts of fabric I now own. But that’s okay.

Because when I quilt, I do it in memory of my aunt. She believed every baby born into this world needed a blanket. Every person should have at least one quilt that they could use to cuddle up with on the couch. She was determined to make this happen.

I am determined to make this happen.

I quilt in memory of my Aunt.

The picture above was the first Christmas after my Aunt passed away. I finished up several quilts she  had started and gave them to family. Shown from left to right holding their quilts are my grandma (my Aunt’s mom), grandpa, my oldest daughter, my niece, and my sister. 

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Hi and welcome! My name is Jessica Torres and I'm a homeschooling mom of two adorably insane girls on the path to greener living. I'm also self declared iPhone addict and lover of all things Apple. When not attached to my kids, my iPhone, or my laptop, you can find me creating cocktail recipes. Subscribe by RSS Feed or by email to join in the fun over here.

Latest posts by Jessica Torres (see all)

105 Responses to Quilting In Memory Of

  1. Kimberly
    Twitter: KimberlyAMuro
    says:

    I know you warned me, but this still made me cry. My grandmother taught me how to crochet when I was younger. She would make every baby a blanket to have before they were born. She has since passed away but I continue to crochet in her memory. And every time I do it, I think of her.
    Kimberly recently posted..A Switch Is Flipped

    • Jessica Torres says:

      That is so sweet that you continue on the tradition. Baby blankets are a very special part of childhood in my opinion.

  2. Galit Breen
    Twitter: galitbreen
    says:

    Oh my, friend. This is beautiful, touching, sweet. I adore this side of your writing.

    I’m so very sorry for your loss.

    And wow, am I ever so glad that you’ve taken on the quilting.

    Beautiful post!
    Galit Breen recently posted..Exclusion and Kindness and Salted Caramel Mochas

    • Jessica Torres says:

      Thank you Galit. I love quilting when I make the time for it. It always relaxes me and I love seeing that I actually created something of beauty.

  3. MamaTrack
    Twitter: MamaTrack
    says:

    I can’t tell you how much this post means to me. For every reason under the sun. You are truly a magnificent niece. And friend.
    MamaTrack recently posted..Things a Man Should Not Say to His Pregnant Wife

  4. By Word of Mouth Musings
    Twitter: ByWordsMusings
    says:

    LOVE this side of you … these little posts you slip in from time to time.
    So sweet and soft, the gentle that is you.
    Yes, we know about her ;)
    By Word of Mouth Musings recently posted..Fall Favorites by Kelly of Mom Got Blog

  5. amanda austin
    Twitter: Amandaaustin
    says:

    I absolutely love this. Every child does deserve a blanket! Wonderful philosophy to have. My grandma was a quilter and quilted all three of her granddaugters a blanket. It’s on my guest bed and I always think of her.
    amanda austin recently posted..My favorite stranger

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I have a quilt my grandma made for me hanging in our toy room. I love looking at it when I go in there. Baby blankets are so special.

  6. Practical Parenting
    Twitter: katiefhurley
    says:

    I’m sobbing. This is beautiful. I love that you still do that for her.
    Practical Parenting recently posted..Stressed Out Parenting

  7. Sherri
    Twitter: OldTweener
    says:

    This is so sweet! Your aunt would be so pleased…
    Sherri recently posted..Sharing Memories with Solei

  8. angela says:

    I love this post so much. She would be so proud of you!

    Abbey has a homemade quilt from a friend of the family, and it is so cherished. I wish my little dude had one, too.

  9. Alison@Mama Wants This
    Twitter: MamaWantsThis
    says:

    You are a sweet, sweet soul, Jessica. Love these heartfelt posts from you.

    Quilting is so special, I wish I knew how to. My mother-in-law made one for my son, I’m gonna make sure he treasures it!
    Alison@Mama Wants This recently posted..I’m Not Just A Stay-At-Home Mom

  10. Elaine
    Twitter: elainea
    says:

    Oh wow, I’m so glad you’re carrying on her legacy.

    Interesting that I have an Aunt that I was so very close to that also passed away from cancer about 6 years ago. I teared up reading this, thinking of our Aunts… xo
    Elaine recently posted..Nicknames I promise your kids don’t have…

  11. Carri
    Twitter: carribrown
    says:

    I loved this post and I’m sure your aunt is proud that you are carrying on her legacy by doing something she loved so much.
    Carri recently posted..UGGs Are What’s Wrong With America

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I’m sure she is too. She loved quilting and I’m doing my best to follow in her footsteps although Twitter does take up a lot of my time.

  12. so sweet and touching. every baby does deserve a blanket especially when it’s made with love. my son’s favorite blankets are the ones made for him. :)
    Cam – Bibs & Baubles recently posted..Target Does it Again – Denizen Review

  13. Kiddothings
    Twitter: kiddothings
    says:

    What a lovely memory of your aunt. It’s wonderful that you’ve chosen to carry on that quilting tradition in memory of her. Perhaps your daughters may one day learn how to quilt from you too.

  14. martha says:

    how lovely when something is done out of love..and in memory of someone special. I can’t quilt for nuts. haha.. perhaps you can do one on tips soon. :)
    martha recently posted..More book reviews

  15. John
    Twitter: daddyrunsalot
    says:

    You’re one of the good ones . . . keep it up :-)
    John recently posted..Where I set the scene in a work in progress.

  16. Mirjam
    Twitter: applesndroses
    says:

    I always enjoy reading your posts..but it’s extra special when you share these precious things. It’s nice getting to know all these different sides of you. I’m glad that you have something tangible to remember your aunt by. XO
    Mirjam recently posted..A gift from the heart

  17. tracy@sellabitmum
    Twitter: sellabitmum
    says:

    Big hugs my friend. I loved this post and I love my aunts so much.
    tracy@sellabitmum recently posted..I Like Target – If a Two Year Old Wrote a Jingle

  18. Kimberly says:

    This is so sweet. I’m sure that she’s so proud of you for continuing to quilt.
    Xoxo
    Kimberly recently posted..How Can I Help You?

  19. Bridget
    Twitter: Twinisms
    says:

    That has to be the best gifts you could ever give someone. Thanks for sharing the sweet story.
    Bridget recently posted..How To Be A Blogger

  20. Miss Marina Star
    Twitter: MissMarinaStar
    says:

    I think it’s great that you are continuing her tradition. What a wonderful way to carry on a person’s memory. I am also impressed with how walking by those tubs makes you smile. You seem so happy just to have a part of her, instead of stressed out about not having used all the fabric yet. Teach me to be like that…seriously. It’s beautiful.
    Miss Marina Star recently posted..First Guest Post…EVER!

    • Jessica Torres says:

      It will take me forever to use all the fabric and that’s okay. I want to use it on special quilts for loved ones instead of making them just to make.

  21. Victoria says:

    Thank you for sharing this and for continuing her memory by quilting. I miss her too and it means so much to me and my kids that you have created these wonderful gifts. I am so happy that she passed her love of quilting on to you so now my kids have something special to share with their Auntie like we got to share with ours. I love you sister!

  22. MommaKiss
    Twitter: mommakiss
    says:

    oh girl.

    i love quilting, haven’t done it in a while. I made quilts for 2 friend’s babies, but none for my own. Sigh. It’s so therapeutic, I wish I had more time.
    MommaKiss recently posted..Awareness

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I didn’t know you quilted too. I saw the scarf you made and I was impressed. I always have my mom make my scarves. Cheaper than having to buy them myself.

  23. Thanks for sharing. What beautiful memories. I’m sure your aunt would be so happy.
    Nicole at the Boy House recently posted..So THIS is why people love the fall.

  24. Eve
    Twitter: EverythingEvie
    says:

    What a beautiful post, Jessica. My mom used to quilt before her stroke. Thank you for sharing.

  25. Elena
    Twitter: elenawollborg
    says:

    That is so very sweet. I knew that you quilted, but I never knew the story behind it. That’s really cool that you do it in her honor. Now that we know how good you are with the sewing machine, maybe you could make our matching bedazzled shirts for Blissdom. I used to sew but I can never get the machine started – the threading part. So, now we can skype & sew! I can feel your excitement. ;)
    Elena recently posted..MIITO’s in British Columbia

    • Jessica Torres says:

      So you want to Skype with me while I eat dinner and while I sew? I can handle those but if you ask to go in the bathroom with me I’m going to have to change my number. ;)

      I can start working on the pimp cup designs for our Blissdom bedazzled shirts.

  26. Stasha
    Twitter: NorthWestMommy
    says:

    I love how you associate quilting with the love for your Aunt.
    Stasha recently posted..Walkabout

  27. Leighann says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. This is a craft I didn’t know you could do. I am here to help you in anyway
    Leighann recently posted..When You Turn 31…

  28. This is such a wonderful way to remember her and someting she loved.
    JDaniel4′s Mom recently posted..Passing Down Costumes Cousin to Cousin

  29. Natalie
    Twitter: corp2domestic
    says:

    I’m so glad you get to remember your aunt in this way. I know she’s so proud of you for carrying on the tradition!
    Natalie recently posted..Almost Wordless Wednesday: Apple Pickin’

  30. I think quilting is awesome. My grandmother made all of her grandkids quilts and I cherish mine so much. I think of how much love went into those quilts and I am grateful she cultivated that talent.
    Marie@feedingfive recently posted..My hood

  31. Carly
    Twitter: livingthescream
    says:

    What a sweet story. There is nothing like a home made blanket. I do not know how to quilt but greatly admire anyone who can. It looks so hard.

    • Jessica Torres says:

      Quilting to me is really more about time and patience, everything has to be done just right so it lines up correctly. That’s my hardest part with it. I always tend to rush.

  32. jacqui
    Twitter: chicktuition
    says:

    This is a really great way to remember someone you love so much! I love quilts and I think it’s really cool that you know how to make them…I’m slightly jealous. Your aunt was right. Every baby should have a new blanket and everyone else should have one to cuddle up on the sofa with…I’m glad you share her determination.
    jacqui recently posted..Be Careful What You Wish For…

    • Jessica Torres says:

      When you get jealous do your feathers turn green or do they just ruffle up a bit? Just kidding.

      Quilts are the perfect companion on cold nights when cuddled up on the couch spending time with Twitter.

  33. —Jessica,
    I hope you do this. I’d love to see the finished project! What an excellent way to keep one’s memory Alive. X
    My Inner Chick recently posted..8 Things I loath and Love About Blogs

  34. Grumpy Grateful Mom
    Twitter: grumpygrateful
    says:

    Thank you for sharing this story. What a wonderful tradition you carry on. The blanket and quilts I’ve gotten from people have been some of my very favorite gifts.

  35. Sue Robinson
    Twitter: MotherhoodnMe
    says:

    So sweet and such a great way to have your aunt’s memory live on. SO sorry for you loss Jessica.

  36. Nichole
    Twitter: nicholebeaudry
    says:

    What an amazing tribute to your aunt.
    Such a heartbreaking story…so sorry your aunt lost her battle.
    That you quilt because of her is so lovely.
    Nichole recently posted..Autumn and Joy

    • Jessica Torres says:

      Thank you Nichole. She really did fight as long as she could. I’m so grateful to her for passing this skill on to me.

  37. Shell says:

    What a beautiful thing to do to honor her memory.

    Quilting is a skill I wish I had.
    Shell recently posted..Pour Your Heart Out: A Frightening Parenting Moment

  38. Jackie says:

    I’ve made a couple of quilts but nothing like the beautiful ones where you cut lots of small squares.
    It’s great that you’ve kept up the family tradition of quilting…. are you going to teach the girls?
    Jackie recently posted..Mom Fail?

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I wish I had pictures of all the quilts I’ve made to share. Some have been really fun. I’ll teach my girls as long as they want to learn.

  39. Robin @ Farewell, Stranger
    Twitter: FarewellStrangr
    says:

    What a beautiful thing to carry on. Those are really lovely quilts, Jessica!
    Robin @ Farewell, Stranger recently posted..Impromptu Gratitude List, v1

    • Jessica Torres says:

      Thank you Robin!

      If I can get my act together I’ll be sending one to Mama Track for her new baby and I’ll post pictures so everyone can see.

  40. This made me tear up :*) What a lovely, beautiful tribute to your Aunt.

    I feel that way about knitting….my MIL started teaching me to knit a year before she died. I didn’t get to learn everything I wanted–she became too ill–and for awhile, I could NOT knit without crying. Now it’s something that makes me feel closer to her.

    And as for quilting, I’m the quilter in the family and making quilts for everyone has been something very important to me. I have more patterns and fabric than I can probably ever make in this lifetime but it’s something I want to pass down to my kids and theirs.

    Thank you for such a lovely post! (Saw your comment on Scary Mommy)
    thecraftyangel recently posted..Welcome to The Crafty Angel!

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I’m sorry you didn’t get to learn all you wanted from your MIL but at least you know have a bond with her when you do knit.

      I have more quilting supplies than I think I’ll ever be able to use but I’m going to do my best to make sure all the babies in my family are covered with quilts.

  41. Mommy's Paradise
    Twitter: mommysparadise
    says:

    I love your aunt’s philosophy that every person needs a quilt to cuddle up with on the couch and every baby needs a blanket. And knowing a craft like quilting is a beautiful way to always remember your aunt.
    Mommy’s Paradise recently posted..Did I really put an end to the screeching habit?

  42. Jessica says:

    What a wonderful way to keep alive her memory. And, what a beauty tribute. My grandmother is a quilter, too and in her earlier years, she would craft beautiful quilts for me and my siblings. I always said as a teenager that one day I’d spend the time with her to learn how to quilt, but never did. She’s now 90+ and unable to use her hands to quilt, however, I would like to eventually learn the art just to keep that memory of her alive.
    Jessica recently posted..She’s here! (We’re making it work)

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I’m sorry to hear you weren’t able to learn from your grandmother. Maybe you could watch some videos online or take some classes and learn how to quilt on your own so you can continue to make quilts.

  43. Rachel {at} Mommy Needs a Vacation
    Twitter: mommyneedsvaca
    says:

    What a sweet post Jessica!!! I can’t believe you know how to quilt. I don’t even know how to sew a flippin’ button back on anything.
    Rachel {at} Mommy Needs a Vacation recently posted..What You Should Never Ask Your Spouse

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I’ve been sewing buttons on for years. They stay in place but my skills aren’t that pretty when it comes to clothes.

  44. Awwww, that is a wonderfully sweet post. What a great mission of hers!
    Runnermom-jen recently posted..Moments

  45. MangoChutney
    Twitter: Postpartumom5
    says:

    Aww, that’s so sweet! It’s good that you had somebody to teach you how to sew, I’m jealous of your relationship ;) If you do start quilting more, I would like to see them.
    MangoChutney recently posted..A Big Contradiction

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I typically do more quilting in the winter so there should be some upcoming posts with pictures of my creations. Fingers crossed.

  46. I’m sorry about your aunt, but it’s so nice that you can carry her quilting legacy along. Handmade gifts really are wonderful and priceless.
    Rach (DonutsMama) recently posted..Life’s Lessons: The Quiet Edition

  47. Maureen | Tatter Scoops
    Twitter: tatterscoops
    says:

    Oooh Jessica, this gave me goosebumps and brought me to tears. Your words just oozes so much love. I’m so sorry for your loss. This is a truly heartfelt beautiful post to remember her. Thank you for sharing your memory.
    Maureen | Tatter Scoops recently posted..Blog Envy

  48. Kristy @PampersandPinot
    Twitter: PampersandPinot
    says:

    What an adorable picture! I am now on my second ever quilt. I am a beginner and so I have puckerings and such that I try to avoid, but they always seem to be there!
    Kristy @PampersandPinot recently posted..My Kind of Kids

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I’ve been quilting for years and I’m still trying to get the corners to match up on my pieces. The best advice I can give you is take your time, don’t rush it.

  49. Tonya says:

    This is a very loving written post. Thank you for sharing it with us, Jessica. I love that you inherited your aunt’s supplies and find so much joy in quilting in her memory.

    Please post some photos of your quilts!

    I don’t even know how to sew.
    Tonya recently posted..The Hole In My Heart

    • Jessica Torres says:

      I can’t find any pictures of quilts I’ve made in the past but when I finish the quilts I’m working on now I’ll post the pictures.

  50. Sweaty
    Twitter: dosweatthesmall
    says:

    Is there anything you CANNOT do, woman? lol

    Those quilts are gorgeous! I think your aunt was right! Everyone needs a quilt; it’s such a special, personal thing to have… Your aunt sounded like a special woman, indeed. xo
    Sweaty recently posted..On Worrying: a Guest-Post by Katie of Chicken Noodle Gravy

  51. I love her idea that every baby should have a blanket. So, so sweet.

    I also love how you might have a tough exterior, but you’re a big ol’ baby, just like me. :)
    Julie @ mamamash recently posted..Let’s go visiting!

  52. Caroline says:

    Oh my goodness! What a great blog. I’m glad you linked to it most recently, I’m trying to clean out a months worth of missed reading in my reader right now.

    I LOVE quilts! It’s so cool that you can do it, I would love to see some pictures of your work.

  53. julie
    Twitter: juliefromotown
    says:

    this is a great post Jessica! so touching, i hope you still find the time to go back and work on some more of these projects – would love to see some of them. Your Aunt was right! and she would be so proud of you :)
    julie recently posted..wordless wednesday

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