Monday, March 12, 2012

A Group Project Gone Great

Since October I have been teaching a group of ladies, as well as working with others, towards a goal of making two afghans for our Pastor and His wife as a special "We love you" gift. Well, this past Friday marked the 37th year anniversary of our church, and I had the privilege to present both of these beautiful afghans this past Sunday to our Pastor's wife as a small token of our love and gratitude to both of them for their many years of dedication, love,  and sacrifice they so faithfully have given throughout all these many years.

  Funds were donated by those who were willing to give towards the project, and once all the materials were gathered, we began our meetings on Friday nights at my home. We met on many days and evenings working and crocheting and learning and laughing and sharing and stumbling (and eating), but through it all, some new talent was discovered along the way, new friendships forged, a new sense of unity and sisterly love and understanding among us grew, and two beautiful gifts were created  for two very special people. 
Aren't they absolutely stunning?

This was the first group project I led that I actually had to teach a group of ladies to crochet all at one time, with (somewhat of) a deadline, with an actual intended end and goal in mind.

Could  it be done?????  

 This afghan was started on first. As I began teaching those who did not know how to crochet, those who already knew how to crochet were given their assignments and yarn, and after some brief coaching, began their work at home. They joined us during the lesson times and worked on their squares while the others learned, and would step in and help when someone was stuck and I was busy with someone else. As their squares were finished, they were handed over to me, and the afghan would be sewn together as the squares permitted during my own time.

  Once we began to make headway, the next one was started.  Those who took to crocheting easily, and those who had time to work at home on their projects with sufficient skill, took home their own assignments by this time.  And still others joined in on the crocheting to contribute.

Between these two afghans being started, there was even another one made for a baby shower, and some of my newbies who had just mastered their single crochet, and some who had already mastered the granny square took part in this one! Even my ten year old willingly created a square for her church class teacher's soon to be born bundle of love!

Baby shower now over, the winter holidays came and went,  during which time we did not meet, killing the wonderful momentum that had quite wonderfully developed in the beginning. Life eventually settled back down into a somewhat predictable pattern again, as did our meetings. But for me, with four children still living at home, homeschooling one, being a crochet "addict" by default, and being an active member of my church,  time can fly by so quickly! It soon came down to the final week before I had planned to present them, and there was still a row and a half that needed to be sewn together on the final afghan, and many ends still not weaved in on both of them, and the border to put on one!!!!

 Did I stress? Did I panic? 


 Although I had done this part on my own in other past group projects, I realized I needed yet another lesson in the fine art of delegating.  I was able to gather three ladies that were available one afternoon, and 9 1/2 hours total of laboring at weaving in those lovely little ends passed away in one lovely afternoon over girl talk, coffee, tea, soda, strawberries, cheese and crackers, Oreo cookies, and my favorite-entertaining a little red head. 

The afghans were presented- fully completed- and on time! 
As I presented them to our Pastor's wife, I couldn't help but feel overwhelmed with gratitude for all the time and energy and love and sacrifices she and her husband has given these so many years selflessly to our church and the many people who have walked through its doors.
It has been 37 years, and knowing this is going to be the last anniversary celebrated before Pastor retires, I was grateful and humbled to be able to stand before her and present her the gifts. As her eyes filled with tears, mine started to as well. A few words were said in honor of all they have done and given, and the afghans held up and presented. 

I slept well that night, feeling full, blessed, happy, and relieved, knowing that the project was finally completed and over with.


I woke up the next morning already having started planning the next project in my head

Can you relate????

Have a LOVEly day everyone!
Love all you do, and those you have, with all your heart!

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