Before the retreat, I started working on several small projects. I finished making the three fabric boxes intended for birthdays coming up soon.
My Cousin in Alaska got one from me a few weeks ago and sort of gave me an OK. What I mean is that she enjoyed the gift and said she would find a use for it. This one is intended for my older Son's birthday.
Thing is, when I give a gift I really don't know how it will be received. Do we really ever know? I remember reading a quote many years ago that said if we accept the gift, we accept the giver. Receiving is not easy. We were bombarded by other quotes that said "it is more blessed to give than to receive."
Is there truth to that? And why? Receiving is hard. It has been very hard for me and is a skill that I am developing through the various quilting swaps I participate in. I find that most of the people are very generous. Again, we are exchanging our projects and are at different levels in the fabric arts. So what a person receives might be superior to their skills or less than where they are with the art. I find that in the receiving of these items, I am challenged to both evolve and to tolerate diversity.
Another project I finished started out as a test block for a swap starting up in October. It didn't quite work for how it is supposed to look, so I cut the borders down a bit and made a small candle mat, which does work. The binding on this one is also leftover from another project.
I am wondering if it is easier for me to receive from people I do not know. I place no judgements on their motives when I receive their gifts. I have no family history with them. I do not worry that their gift to me might stretch their finances. And after many years of doing this, I really have stopped caring if they keep their word. I keep mine and that is what matters to me.