A week after Freddie (Fredericka) Hollis’s momentous announcement that she and Barney Schwartz (retired RCMP corporal) were officially engaged to be married and that they had agreed to have their small wedding in Carole and Bob Fortescue’s garden, plans began to unfold rapidly. The wedding date had been set for Saturday, May 27th at 2:00 PM after which Sybil Jimson, Loretta’s daughter, would serve refreshments.
Arrangements for Freddie’s two cats Pima and Callie had been made for the time Freddie and Barney were away. They would stay at the Jimson’s farm, having their own holiday adventure in the Victorian style farmhouse with its screened porch and sunroom.
While all this wedding news was circulating about town, four of the five members of the Birds of a Feather quilt bee had something else on their minds: What special gift could they give to Freddie?
That morning, they had decided to meet in the back room of Emmy Lou Custer’s Nimble Thimble quilt shop.
“The last thing Freddie would want is a quilt—especially since she has so many of her own,” said Jean.
To which they all agreed.
“Say, how about we make her something to wear?” suggested Carole
“Such as…?” asked Janice.
“Well…for the past few days I’ve been mulling over the idea of a vest or jacket—something she could take with her on her trip to the Yukon.
“I think that’s a great idea,” Loretta exclaimed.
“Were you thinking of a quilted jacket or vest?” asked Janice.
“No, I was thinking more of a machine-embroidered vest. I noticed that Emmy Lou has some wonderful light fleeces in the shop.”
“Machine-embroidered?” sputtered Janice. “Why I haven’t done machine-embroidery in ages!”
“Neither have I,” Loretta added.
“And “I’ve never even tried machine-embroidery,” Jean admitted.
“OK, don’t panic you three,” Carole replied. “I’ve got a solution. While in town a couple of days ago, I happened to run into Adrianna. She had just come from the Oak Crest retirement community where she’d been visiting with her brother, Tony. As you know, Tony, Adrianna and her husband Bill are coming to the wedding. When she asked whether we were going to give Freddie a ‘going away’ gift, I mentioned that we hadn’t yet decided but we had planned to meet in a couple of days and discuss what we should do. That’s when I mentioned my idea about a vest. Well, Adrianna’s response was that if she could be of help, she’d be delighted.” Carole paused and looked at the three women. “So, what do you think?”
“I say we contact her right away,” Loretta replied and the other two agreed.
“Good!” Carole responded, as she began digging in her purse for her cell phone. “How about I call her right now and see if Adrianna could meet us here at Emmy Lou’s shop the day after tomorrow?”
And so the phone call was made.