Monday, July 28, 2014


Recovering a lost password through google is HARD work!  I've given up many times over the past couple years. Tonight however, I accomplished the task within the hour parameter I had allotted for it. Finally, damn it!

On to the news I have wanted to share for quite some time...
All 3100 of the ...and still counting blocks have been completed and they have found a permanent home! In August of 2013 I donated the project to the Stearns History Museum, the only museum in Minnesota affiliated with the Smithsonian!

I can't begin to relay the gratitude I have for everyone who helped to make this crazy idea a reality, and how relieved I am that it has found a home.  It was at turns a labor of love and of torture.  So much thankfulness for those who gave there lives that I might be free to live and work in my calm, beautiful community. So much sadness as I would often recognize just how much horror and grief the blocks represented as they sat in my living room.  So much guilt for times when they weren't on exhibit, yet installing them meant experiencing another wave of intense sadness.  They were never installed without sharing tears with a gold star family or two. Just seeing people experience the project, and their recognition that each and every knot represents a person was overwhelming for all.  Even now, when I speak to guilds about another exhibit, there is Always someone who remembers ...and still counting, and makes me speak about it again.

I have been writing about this from my experience, but this project was not about me.  This is about remembering and honoring those who perished in the Iraq war.  Everyone.  To not have represented the Iraqi citizens would have seemed criminal.

I started when mr. Cheney was predicting this would be a 100 year war.  I couldn't allow that there would be nothing to remind us of the great losses that were occurring. As Americans it is easy enough to walk through our daily lives insulated and ignorant of the struggles of others. Our neighbors at home or abroad.

The war is supposedly over, though the region is unstable. I hope a 2.0 version of this will never be needed.    
The safety pins that made it such a flexible piece for installing in a wide variety of venues are not archival, so they are being removed, and the panels are being stitched together by hand. There are wonderful volunteers from the St Cloud Heritage Quilters helping with this large task. They work on it at the museum the last Friday of every month if you want to stop in and help!

Again, a huge Thank You to everyone who supported this project!