Coping in Crisis (COVID-19)

How Are You Doing?

We need hope now more than ever. However, there’s a time for naive hope and a time for common sense coupled with faith. Wash your hands and stay at home if you can, please.

I’ve been debating whether or not to post about the COVID-19 pandemic, mainly because it’s all we see, hear, and think about these days. Believe me, I’d much rather be writing about how amazingly prolific I’ve been while “staying-in-place” here in California – but that wouldn’t be true. Currently, my creative works-in-progress are simply works-on-file.

But that’s okay.

Now is a good time to turn our thoughts to others. Man, it’s hard to do right now! Of course, I’m worried about my family, my friends, my community. (And myself.) The population of the entire world is in crisis (I’m making a specific distinction here, because our earth has been in crisis for some time, but far too many have been ignoring that for a while now). In so many ways, we feel utterly helpless, especially knowing that the worse is yet to come for those of us in the U.S, throughout Europe and honestly, around the world. What can we do?

It would be nice if I had a fitting, blanket answer for everyone, but I don’t. As a woman of Faith, the answer for me is listen to our sensible medical experts and pray.

It always saddens me to know that many folks find prayer offensive. I hope those people are able to have a deep appreciation for meditation & can also access the sense of comfort that comes to many of us who pray.

I’m grateful to be able to utilize both methods in order to keep the overwhelming currents of anxiety and paralyzing fear of the unknown at bay presently. I’m also reading more, especially when I can’t sleep at night.

What are you doing to help ease your emotional burdens?

Please find whatever supportive communities you can to help you hang onto hope in your heart and common sense with both hands. If you can help the most vulnerable communities like the elderly and the homeless, please consider making a monetary donation to local charities. Right now, many children out of school still desperately need access to warm meals. School districts and volunteers around the nation are stepping up. Consider checking out Let’s do what we can!

Because I’m feeling so physically idle, I’ve been sewing cloth face masks for our healthcare workers, just in case. Honestly, I hope that no one will be so desperate to have to use them, to be honest. I mean, when I read this article stating there’s truly a legitimate call for volunteers to sew masks, I couldn’t believe it. But here I am, gathering materials from my quilter’s stash and learning how to make what I’m calling “desperation masks”. (Truly, I hope that our healthcare workers will soon have enough APPROPRIATE MEDICAL-GRADE PPE to meet the inevitable demands that are soon to come.)

These homemade masks are surely a last resort for our healthcare workers; they remind me of a thick bandanna with 4 layers of fabric. Perhaps they can be used to cover the singular N95 mask that many of our healthcare workers, such as my sister-in-law, are having to reuse day after day.

I hope my collection will soon return to my fabric stash, unneeded, because our community’s appropriate medical-grade mask supply needs have been met. But the mere act of making these masks is a bit therapeutic for me. It gives me something constructive to do; sewing these masks lets my idle hands work while my frantic mind finds a quiet space.

If you’d like something to do & you have more fabric than you know what to do with, check out these two resources: Joanne’s and My masks are a bit of a hybrid because I don’t have liner & I made ties out of fabric instead of using elastic (I called my local store, but they were out, so I improvised).

I’m truly sending Love & Light to all of you. Please be safe and connect with all the valuable things you hold dear that have nothing to do with money. Be well.

Sending Love & Light,

©Atina Atwood 2020 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

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– Atina Atwood is the author of the Holiday Heartbeats series and a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest for more, and sign up for Atina’s newsletter here.

It’s Quiltin’ Time! My “H” Quilt

The end of the year is coming so quickly, and I almost don’t have enough blogging days to cover all the topics that I want to talk about! That’s a wonderful way to close out the year. One of my 2018 resolutions was to try out quilting as a hobby. Well, I love it, and I’ve completed more projects than I can write about here, but I simply have to include a favorite every now and then.

My “H” Quilt

My last big quilt of the year is what I fondly call the “H” Quilt. One of the characters in my latest novella has a grandmother who created a quilt with the letter H as the predominant pattern. I was so inspired by it, I decided to make a quilt just the way I imagined! Admittedly, I’m sure that Mrs. Hanley’s quilt is leagues and bounds more beautiful, especially with the quillting part, but I am so proud of imagining a design and finding a way to make that thought into not only something tanglible, but also useful!

Multicolored “H” quilt designed, pieced, & quilted by Atina Atwood.

I love the vibrant colors, and the alternating pattern of lights to darks certainly gives the quilt a festive look. I didn’t use any sort of fancy quilting technique during the process (I finished this one up in one day); I also haven’t even started binding it. Too many end-of-the-year deadlines are taking priority at the moment, but I’ll get to it in a few days.

Inspirational fabric makes the backing of this quilt as much fun as the front. What feels better than warm love and little bit of TLC at the same time? This was a fun project, and I look forward to making more quilts in the coming year. What are you looking forward to?

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2018 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook for more.