stories from my red thread life

Healing from tragedy: quilters create the Toronto LOVE Project

The deadly van attack on pedestrians that took place in Toronto on April 23 left Torontonians in a state of shock and sadness. In this relatively safe and friendly city, any act of hate shakes us. In the days that followed, many people wondered what they could do. Some people attended vigils, expressing support for the victims and outrage at the perpetrator. Berene Campbell got to work. Berene, a designer and quilter, has a large following in the sewing community, and she called upon caring quiltmakers to help create a work of art that would express hope, positivity, and unity in the face of this tragedy. She teamed up with the organization North York Arts and secured a bright, central space at the North York Centre, at the heart of the community where the attack happened. Today, June 25, 2018, the installation was unveiled. It consists of 71 banners, each one four inches wide and 22 feet long. They were created by people across Canada, the United States and Australia. Some came from quilt guilds such as the Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver Modern Quilt Guilds, while others came from individuals. Another group of eight banners on display was made by [...]

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Living in the best place on Earth

Toronto skyline: photo by John Davidson Photography © Two weeks ago The Economist declared Toronto, my home, to be the best city in which to live, based on a detailed analysis of 50 cities. This wonderful news was announced just as we were receiving a dump of about 25 cm of snow on the cusp of February, the coldest month. This February has been particularly chilly (it’s -14° as I write this, with a wind chill of -23°). Canada is often near the top of these lists. But is it true? In my humble opinion, yes, even in February. Okay, maybe not in February. My sweetheart lives in Lyon, France, a beautiful city. But don’t take my word for it: Lyon is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Even the rooftops are beautiful. Sometimes when I visit (not often enough), we travel around France to soak up even more beauty. On a recent flight home from Paris (my first time there in 25 years), I found myself wondering how I would feel this time, arriving home in Toronto. Would it seem drab compared to Paris? As I sat in the airport bus (a long-overdue rail link is finally in the works), [...]

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