Sunday, June 27, 2010
Hole in the Barn Door 90th Birthday
My Dad's 90th birthday was approaching. How could I honor his many years? He so appreciated the western shirts I made for for his birthdays. I would often try out a quilting technique in his shirts - trupunto, Seminole patchwork, folded stars are a few that come to mind.
He always looked for the label inside the shirt - "Hand made by Barbara Jansz."
If someone remarked about his shirt, he would proudly explain that his daughter made all his western shirts. When the shirts become quite faded and stained with horse slobber, my mother would insist that they go into the rag bag.
Dad and I rode horses together until he was 86 when one of his artificial knees had to be removed to fight an infection. Thinking about our many years of riding, and all the horses he had ridden or raised, I began to brainstorm the names of all the horses with my brothers and sisters.
I created a wall hanging using the block "Hole in the Barn Door." His Tennessee Walker's head came out of the center of the block with hay hanging from his mouth. A black and white checkered border framed the block and within the white squares were forty horses' names. I hand quilted it, added the important label and presented it to Daddy on his 90th Birthday. He liked it even better than the western shirts!
It also hung next to his cowboy boots at his funeral two years later, and now provides a special memory of him for all of us.
From his pony Rex, to Montana - the horse who taught us all to ride, to Paolo Jim, his beautiful stallion that sired many colts and fillies, they are all remembered around the Hole in the Barn Door.
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