Family · Love · Marriage

Champagne Flutes, Patchwork Quilts and Thimbles

So this is ONE of the champagne flutes Shane and I drank from at our wedding.


The other broke.

I’ve been really upset about it, and not because it’s from our wedding day (sorry Shane). But, because these were a gift from my Grandma.

I know it’s just a material thing. But Grandma was so much to me in so many ways. I miss her so much. And walking by this one flute makes me tear up, but the thought of putting this one away (to protect or keep myself from crying) just doesn’t seem to be an option either. And when I start crying about Grandma, tears for Jordan are never far behind and then I’m just an emotional mess for hours.

Grandma actually gave Shane and me two presents. Well, kinda three. She HAD to give Shane a homemade quilt. My Grandma used to make BEAUTIFUL patchwork quilts. I remember the wooden stands being set up “in the room across the hall” (where at one point my entire family of five lived, but that’s another post). Grandma gave me one when I left for college. And while everyone else’s dorms had cute comforters and matching throw pillows… yep! I had Grandma’s patchwork quilt. I’ve slept with it almost every night since then.

I say *almost* because Grandma decided that a certain quilt with a certain pattern in green was the one she HAD to give Shane. She wanted him to feel special and a part of our family when we were engaged. Grandma would be quick to say that Shane had really already been in our family a long time… and she’d be right. But, she wanted this specific quilt for this specific event to honor Shane. Yep, my Grandma forgot this was the *same* quilt she had given me and she was dead set on giving it to Shane.

When Kathy (my mom) figured this out, she told me Grandma was insistent this quilt was *somewhere* in her house, mama was tired of arguing with Grandma over this, and I was gonna take that quilt to the dry cleaner, wrap it up, and bring it to my own wedding shower.

And that’s what I did. With a note, in my handwriting: To Shane, Love Grandma.

Shane still insists that blanket is his…

But back to the flute. The second present Grandma gave us, she thought about so carefully. She even asked me what she should buy us. If there were anything *special* we needed. (Grandma liked being special!) I thought she might like to buy us something for the kitchen, since she was such an amazing cook….

Nope. She shot that down.

She told me she wanted to get me something I’d always remember about that day. Something fancy. Something unique. These champagne flutes popped in my head.

Let me reiterate that my Grandma did not have a lot of money. And while these might appear fancy, I knew they were inexpensive. But Grandma asked: “How much? I wanna get you something nice!”

I knew my mom would order and at this point Grandma would never see a receipt… so I kinda said something along the lines of “Well, they are pretty nice… you really don’t have…”

“THAT’S what I wanna get you!”

The smile on her face was so great. Just like when she gave Shane the quilt! Grandma herself never had fancy things; she wore plaid button ups daily, and spent most of her life working in dirt, washing it off, or cleaning it up! But she relished the fact that SHE was the one to make my day special with these fancy glasses!

I tried to glue it back together ya’ll. 😭😭😭😭 It was a lost cause. I told myself it was just a “thing”, but it still has me in tears.

The third thing she gave me on that day was a thimble. It was my something old. The one she sewed with all those years. She spent countless hours pouring her love and time into those blankets with that thimble. I knew I wanted my something old to come from her, and when we thought of the thimble, that proud smile showed up again!


Shane can claim that blanket all he wants! That thing is mine! (And I still sleep with it every night! Just me. Shane and I each have our own sheet and blanket on our bed! It’s a necessity! Marriage hack!)

I also tell myself the broken flute is Shane’s too… which kinda makes me laugh and fight through the tears.

So for now, I’ll keep the thimble locked up safe for keeping, I’ll keep my flute on my dresser to make me cry and then laugh and then smile, and then I’ll snuggle in my blanket. I swear sometimes after all these years I can still smell her powder when I pull it to my face.

I love you Grandma! And miss you always.
Love, your favorite


2 thoughts on “Champagne Flutes, Patchwork Quilts and Thimbles

  1. Hi Jennifer, I have been reading your blog today, it came to me in form of a share on facebook. So glad I found it. I am Cecilia Whaley Bowen and my grandmother was Irene Thigpen. So I knew your grandmother “Skinner” quite well. She was surely a blessing to anyone who ever knew her, and your stories brought back memories of my own. I have sat here and cried tears for you that turned into tears for myself. Memories of Skinner sitting with Grandma, good conversation, great wisdom sitting together, and my young self walking away with a double blessing any time I had sat with them both. My grandma may have put a few stitches in Shane’s green quilt, i mean your green quilt. lol!! As well as your grandma probably put a few stitches in my quilts. Grandma loved Skinner and so did I. Anyway, thanks for stirring my own memories of good times, love and family.


    1. Thank you so much for reaching out!!! Yes, I remember Grandma and Mrs. Irene sitting in “the room across the hall”, along with many other women making quilts, or outside shucking corn, or chatting away on the telephone! Mrs. Irene was such a blessing to Grandma, she loved having someone she could pick up the phone and chat with; I think they spoke just about every single day! Grandma kept journals when they would all go on trips! I will have to pull those and maybe write about some of those; they are fun to read! I am so glad you enjoyed the post; my Grandma was really my best friend, and I miss her so much! I know you miss yours, too!!! I am so thankful for all these wonderful memories and keepsakes!


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