plant worry grow hope tree quilt blocks

Plant Worry, Grow Hope

Today is our 26th day sheltering at home, since we made the decision as a family back in mid-March to stay home to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, about 4 days before the state of Maine closed schools and began slowly shutting down. As I’m sure is the same with all of you, we are still trying to adjust to the “new normal”, but are trying to focus on gratitude for our ability to shelter in place in relative comfort while those on the front lines battle this virus, and while many, many people suffer because of lack of safe housing, no paycheck, limited food supply, and lack of healthcare even when sick. This pandemic is certainly making it crystal clear which parts of our society need to change to better support humanity and the planet, once we get through this. 

Suddenly home schooling a 4 year old, 7 year old, and 10 year old has certainly kept my life busy, but after about a week and a half and trying three different schedules without success, we found a routine that seems to “work” for us. Each kid has a checklist of things they need to complete before earning screen time, which in this house is in the form of Cut the Rope, Caterzillar, and other such games on the single tablet and one phone (mine) we have. Because the kids can complete the tasks in whatever order they’d like, they are more motivated than when I tried to stick to a more rigid schedule.  With each of them spending time on reading, writing, math, exercise, chores, outside time, science/engineering, and art/drawing each day, I feel better letting them zone out with games for a while in the afternoon. The well-earned screen time has also meant that I have managed to squeeze in a bit of sewing each day, which as you can imagine has been very therapeutic.

plant worry grow hope tree quilt blocks Since our self-isolation has begun, I’ve found myself sewing trees. They are a brief respite from the realities of life these days. As I’ve sewn more, I realize that I’m just trying to grow some hope, grow some patience, grow some resilience. I’ve started using the hashtag #plantworrygrowhopequilt to document this process, and growing my forest of solace paired with limiting my consumption of news has been quite helpful to my mental health. With the 100 day project beginning world-wide tomorrow, I’ve finally decided to join again, and do #100daysofgrowinghope.  I will be sewing trees, sewing hearts, likely adding a rainbow or two, and just seeing what little things I can do each day to transform my worries into hope. 

plant worry grow hope tree quilt blocksplant worry grow hope tree quilt blocksplant worry grow hope tree quilt blocksI once again plan to be gentle with myself, with soft guidelines of “growing hope”, which I imagine will mostly be in the form of sewing and designing trees, working on putting my Plant Worry, Grow Hope quilt together, and maybe spending sunny days in the garden, literally growing hope in the form of vegetable and flower seeds. I have not yet decided whether I will include weekend days or not, and will feel it out as I go.

While I was talking with my friend Isabelle of Southbay Bella Studio about the 100 Days Project and what project to choose, we realized that between the two of us, we had about a gazillion different ideas. To keep things silly and light, and also to keep the brainstormed deluge of ideas flowing, we are also planning to do 100 Days of Planning 100 Days Projects in Instagram Stories. Again, this is a very relaxed project during which we hope to have a little fun, maintain the personal connection that is SO important during these socially distanced times, and have an epic list of 100 Days Project ideas for future years by the end of it. You can follow her at @southbaybella and I’m @nightquilter

100 days of sew smaller tiny piecing kitty wilkin handsI last participated in the 100 day project back in 2018 when I embarked upon 100 Days of Sew Smaller, which you can read about HERE and see on Instagram HERE.  I quite enjoyed that process, so I’m hoping that this year will be similar. I also truly hope that by the end of these 100 days, the world is well into healing and reconsidering “normal” to include more equality for all humans while also better caring for the earth. 

13 thoughts on “Plant Worry, Grow Hope”

  1. Great newsletter! I don’t have kids but your schedules sound great to give them each control over their choices, prioritizing their activities And finding time management skills to earn what they do want to do. Stay safe and can’t wait to see you hearts, trees and rainbows!


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  2. Lovely droopy tree, and the others all join in to say, Don’t worry”. I have limited myself to watching a lot less news, as over 70’s we were advised not to go out, before we went into total lockdown. A friend does our grocery shopping and pharmacy things, luckily I had thought a little ahead with fabric and threads, freezer paper,batting and steam-a-seam. Hope the family will look back on this time as an adventure, love the way you have the schedule arranged, for those like you with youn. ones at home, it will be so hard.The greens are super bright and help to make a day a lot happier.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You are settling into your homeschool routine very well. It brings back memories for me of all of our homeschool years. So be encouraged – you are doing it exactly as you should for your family. Love the trees. I seem to be craving green right now, so I’m working on an improv project with green stripes and having fun. Great post, Kitty!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Your trees are beyond beautiful. Looking forward to seeing a forest of them on your planned quilt.
    I have just joined your 24K set of followers on Instagram.
    Strength with home life in lockdown with three small children…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. My first time here. Loved reading about growing hope and I have been caring for two grandsons ages 6 and 2 and you have me a wonderful idea about chores for electronics time as the 6 year old grabs my tablet first thing. There are definitely chores he can do and that would also help his hardworking parents too. Looking forward to more trees, hearts whatever comes next. Stay safe .

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Amber! Apologies for the delay. I’m emailing you back today. We had a power outage for 48 hours starting the day of your comment, followed by Easter, then another power outage due to a wind storm… it’s a been a bit nutty here. The Sew Tiny Sampler pattern includes the majority of the blocks I used in my 100 Days of Sew Smaller, and is available in my payhip shop: and the Plant Worry, Grow Hope quilt pattern is still in progress. I will certainly announce when it is available here on my blog and other social media channels. It’s a big pattern, so lots of work goes into making it ready for release. Hopefully within a month!


  6. Good afternoon, I am looking in your store to buy the following patterns: The 100 Day Project of Sew Smaller and also the Plant Worry pattern, Grow Hope. Both projects seem precious to me. I would very much like to be able to do them. Thank you. Belen

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hello! I have a pattern called the Sew Tiny Sampler that contains the majority of the blocks I used to make the 100 Days of Sew Smaller project. You can purchase it here:

    The Plant Worry, Grow Hope pattern is still in progress, but I will certainly share on social media when it is available. Thank you!


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