This is going to be a post – not just about a wonderful group of crafty ladies right here in Hamburg or about this project we were lucky enough to be apart of – but of gratitude. It is on days like this – when the universe aligns – that I am reminded of how lucky I am in so many vast and varied aspects of my life.
Do you ever stop and think about those things? You know the ones….
- where I have ended up. Hamburg. One of the most beautiful cities in the world!
- that I have the privilege of making every day in a space I love. Arty, crafty studio goodness.
- the friends I have met on this journey. Some we left behind, some were here & are now far away and the ones who were here long before us. All of whom are there for us. Always. No matter what.
- that I get to share this life with my best friend. He is my biggest fan & supporter – my beloved Hubby – who continues to remind me (daily) that my contribution to this life – our life and this world, is immeasurable.
Just as we did last April (you can see last year’s post here) – 9 members from the American Womens Club of Hamburg (AWCH) and I came together in a friends home to cut, sew, stuff and close handmade heart pillows for donation to the Mammazentrum Hamburg in the Jerusalem Hospital. It was a long, but rewarding day – filled with lots of laughs, moments of reflection and an extremely effective productive line.
We cut, sewed, ate, laughed, ironed, trimmed, turned, snipped, stuffed and closed our little hearts out all day long – topping lasts year’s number by almost a third! We made over 60 handmade heart pillows in one day. What an achievement ladies. It’s amazing when so many hands come together, the goals we can reach. We can only hope next year’s total is even higher.
The Heart Pillow Project began in the United States by Janet Kramer-Mai and has quickly spread throughout the world, as cancer patients continue to benefit from these handmade heart pillows. Fitting snuggly under the arm, they help relieve pain from surgical incisions & under arm swelling and prevent accidental bumps that may occur in their every day lives. They receive them while in hospital and are theirs to take home and keep.
Thinking about why we were there – knowing that we all know someone suffering or recovering right now from breast cancer, gave us all the motivation we needed. Perhaps we were helping and contributing in the memory of someone we knew – no matter the reason, it’s times like this that makes me catch my breath and remember my health. Remember the health of those dear to me – and how lucky, lucky, lucky we are.
I don’t want this to turn into some preachy post about being richer than two thirds of the population of this planet – just because we have a roof over our heads, food in the fridge and clothes on our backs. Which – we ARE. But with the recent turmoil, heartache and shock of the last few months in our lives – it is really pertinent that we ALL stop once in a while and remember. Remember that you’re lucky, no matter what you’re going through.
Regardless of your bank balance.
Regardless of where or how you live.
Regardless of how many friends you have virtually or in real life.
I am lucky too. I have landed in a place that I love. Surrounded by loved one’s who have become family, inspired every day by a different culture, city and language. Doing what I love every day and that is luckier than most. I know my future is a bright one. I am already a success in my mind. And for that, I am grateful. I am humbly content with what I have now.
A Gus and Ollie blog post would be only be complete if there was a sock monkey not too far away, to help with the mayhem of our crafty day! Sock Monkey Penelope had a wonderful time with us all, helping where she could – keeping a keen eye on the pillow count and making sure our cups were always topped up with yummy peppermint tea 🙂 Thanks Penelope!
A huge thank you goes out to those who donated their time, materials and expertise to this working bee for 2015! I can’t wait to do it all over again with you next year. Should you be an American or expat in Hamburg and want any further details about the wonderful American Women’s Club of Hamburg, simply click on the link! New members are always welcome.
**Disclaimer** This post was is no way sponsored by the AWCHambug. These opinions are my own.