Friday, May 16, 2014

Part One of Our Second Journey to Oso!

Nothing ever stays the same, we are ever evolving and even after disasters such as the Oso landslide, fires and tornadoes, things evolve, people come and go, and even FEMA and the Red Cross buzz in and out quickly!

Yesterday, my middle granddaughter, the one we affectionately call, Diva Girl went with me back up to the Oso area and was the one documenting the trip from the full van to the end!

We had another full load with over 100 blankets and quilts!

One of the beautiful quilts I pick up last time from the Skagit Valley YMCA

Dear Dodge, I can sure use a new mini-van one with the stow and go and recessed back!

So blessed to have so many quilts and blankets!

 I was dumbfounded when my granddaughter asked me about the landslide, she had heard us talking and seen pictures but really as an 11 year old didn't know much!  

Don't you learn about current events in any of your classes? I almost fell over when she told me no!  What happened to classes or teachers that teach current events?  I had at least a weekly report to write on some news worthy story in junior high and reports in high school!

We left earlier this time, as I had a stop by SnoPac to deliver the box that I didn't see last time and we were blessed to hear how these quilts have made such a huge difference in this dispatch center.

When we were there the one thing the administrative assistant told me was how these quilts had been breaking barriers that were up and everyone was smiling more, were so excited to try to find the quilt that fit them.  (Yes, while all of them are there to work for the good of the community, there are always divisions between shifts, trainee's, etc., your quilts broke that)

From the centers Manager when I checked my email last evening:
'Good morning Jean,
I'm sorry I missed your visit this morning.  I wanted to pass along the great positive energy these quilts produced in the workplace.  People had a ton of fun going through the quilts to find one that fit their personality.  There was a wonderful outpouring of joy with the staff in receiving this magnificent gift.
You and your volunteers are doing great work!
Thank you again,'
Always remember, the gifts you give, the quilts that you put your hearts into, reaches out to the soul of those that receive them!  It is your skills, love for others that allows me to do what I am doing!
Our first stop was at a local Denny's right off I-5 where the wonderful Mary Udman from Skagit Valley YMCA agreed to meet me to drop off quilts her organization had collected since the last time I was there and to shave off over an hour from our trip!
We picked up almost 30 beautiful quilts and blankets and Mary is an amazing woman whose love for others just shines through her and you can tell she enjoys helping those in need!
We stopped by the funeral home in the area that performed most of the funerals for the victims that lost their life and dropped four quilts off with Carrie, she was deeply moved by your generosity and that we would think of them.
Then off to the police department where I had been in contact with Monica and she helped me with numbers for both the PD and FD, so we were prepared!
While they are a small department, their building is beautiful and the officers were all in training for the most part, which truly amazed Aly because she thought once the became an officer, they didn't have to go to school anymore!
Oh, I explained they are in constant training to keep up their skills, to learn new technology and update themselves on many things. 'Well, I won't be a cop she told me, I am not being tazed or shot for training!' Funny girl!
Officer J. Rhodes, a very funny and sweet man!
Detective Dan

Office Paul and the ladies with a quilt! Monica is second from the right!

 The ladies immediately began unpacked the quilts and oohing and ahhing over how beautiful they all were and how hard it would be to choose.  All of whom I met, couldn't have been more genuine in their appreciation for all of you!

I didn't ask if any of them lost their homes, if any of them lost family or friends, it is truly none of my business, but what is my business is leaving them quilts to comfort them and to let them know people do care about them and the job they do.

If you have never had the amazing privilege of working at a police department, having a friend or neighbor or family member as a police officer, you truly do not know how warm, caring and giving these men and women are and how humbled they are that we care!

Just one of the Arlington Firehouse's


These men were so sweet and funny

So, we headed from the PD to the Fire Department and as is usually the case, no one was home, they were out on a call. As our blessings would have it, just as we were pulling out of the station parking lot, the Medic unit pulled in with these two amazing men and oh, they were so sweet and funny to Diva girl!

Right away the man on the left picked this quilt with the fish on it, while he said it would be tad short, he knew when he got it home, his cat would enjoy laying on it while on his lap!  Awwwww!!!

The medic on the left surprised me. I always introduce myself with my name, Layers of Hope - Quilting 911 and the fact that I dispatched police and fire for over 12 years in Goodyear, Arizona!

This medic actually knew where Goodyear was, explained to the other medic where it was and told me he is looking to retire to Arizona and while he has a home in Casa Grande, Arizona, he thinks he wants higher elevation but no snow!

It was really cool to talk to him and both of them were so kind.
When it came time for pictures, they told Alysha they had helmet hair, would she give them time to fix it, we all laughed at that one!

They gave me easy directions to get back to the 530 to head towards Oso, as my angel pilot Joy couldn't make it this time. I took a short detour because I knew I had seen a 7-11 and this Ranny never passes up the chance for a Coke Slurpee!

Not to mention I had no idea how long we would be in line waiting for the pilot car once we headed that way.  I knew the schedule but I had to meet with an amazing lady first!  

That will wait until tomorrow, enjoy some of Diva Girls pictures she took along the way!

Safeco Field, downtown Seattle from I-5

Century Link Field, home of the Superbowl Champions, the Seattle Seahawks!

Water between Seattle and Everett

She was really wanting to capture the mountains and landscape here!


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