Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Call for Kissing Pillows!

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Soldier Family Kissing Pillow

We have been asked by Elizabeth Z (residing in Hawthorn Woods, IL)
to participate in the
Soldier Family Kissing Pillow Project.

She shares with us: Navy Helicopter Squadron HSM-70 (the "Spartans" out of Jacksonville, FL) is deploying to the Persian Gulf in early 2011. They've requested kissing pillows for their squadron, and we need 1100 pillows to support them. Many of the men & women in the squadron have been deployed to the gulf multiple times in the past ten years. They are routinely gone from home on short deployments for 1-2 months at a time, and now their families are faced with yet another long separation. My brother saw me stitching a kissing pillow when he was on leave several months ago and asked if I could make them for his squadron's next long tour. He just gave me timing and I couldn't say no!

Interested in participating?
At the October chapter meeting, Beth V
will have kits available for
NANI members.

The kits include the pattern, cotton floss & aida cloth

Our chapter members will
just be stitching
the squares
as Elizabeth Z has volunteer(s)
for the stuffing and finishing.

The stitched squares will be collected
during the November January meeting
and given to Elizabeth Z on December 2nd.

(or her name & address are included with the kit
if you would like to mail them directly to her
before January 15th)

Outreach Program Background
From the EGA Yellow Rose Chapter Web site: Soldier Family Pillows

In 2005, wanting to show our appreciation for the sacrifices made by military personnel, Yellow Rose members began hand-stitching small 4” X 4” patriotic pillows designed to be used as a keepsake for the children and loved ones left behind by the soldiers departing for service of the U.S.

The lightly stuffed pillows have a heart outline, the words “I love you,” and two red, white and blue stars within the heart, and are backed with washable fabrics in patriotic and camouflage designs.

Each pillow is presented in a plastic bag with a note explaining the purpose of the tiny pillow and expressing our gratitude for their service.

The soldier kisses the pillow and gives one to each of his/her loved ones to hold onto until he/she returns from war.

When we began this project, we initially thought only about the children, but the wives and sweethearts requested them too, and then, the soldiers wanted one with everyone’s kisses on it to take with him/her off to war.

The response has been overwhelming. A very special project that we hoped would express our gratitude for the sacrifices of our servicemen and women has more than filled our expectations and has mushroomed into something that touches the hearts of everyone.

In the fall of 2006, Yellow Rose began offering the project to all Embroiderers’ Guild of America chapters.

In November 2006, the project was offered to chapters of the American Needlepoint Guild.

The goal was to have needlework chapters stitching for military units across the United States. Although early in our sharing efforts, by the end of 2006, 15 chapters have already adopted military units, 29 chapters are stitching for Hearts Apart, and two shops have joined in the stitching.

Hearts Apart is an organization for the school-aged children of servicemen and women who have been deployed or will be deployed, enabling them to be with other children who are missing their parents, and where they are guided in positive avenues of thought.)

We have truly just begun to share this project with stitching chapters with requests coming in daily to participate.

Questions? Contact Beth V, Karol J, Sue D
or e-mail Needle Artisans

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