Creating a home by hand.

Ohana Means Family

Last spring, I had the idea that I would make each of our children a quilt for Christmas.  I made this Jelly Roll 1600 quilt top with our middle daughter in mind.

Then the six month contract Dave had been hired for was cancelled after little more than two months.   The quilt top got folded and placed in the bottom of my suitcase and traveled from place to place with us for the rest of the year and in turn made the trip with us to Florida for the winter.

One of the things I’ve discovered since our daughter’s diagnosis is the incredible feeling of helplessness that can sweep over a parent. To keep myself busy and to feel like I was doing something, anything… no matter how small, I decided to finish that quilt for her as a surprize.

We sent it off by Express Mail last Monday. Now that she has received it, I can show it to you.

Front of Ohana Aloha Quilt blog photo

I hand embroidered the words Aloha, Hope, Love and Ohana through all layers of the quilt.

Embroidered Aloha

Embroidered Hope

Embroidered Love

Embroidered Ohana
Ohana is Hawaiian for family.

I used the beautiful Hawaiian fabric I mentioned in this post for the back.

Back of Ohana Aloha Quilt

The quilt was mailed inside the matching tote bag from that post, as well.

After the quilt was washed and dried, I attached this label.

Made With Love Quilt Label 1

Made with Love Quilt Label 2

I wanted her to know that her Dad had helped me make the quilt too.  He helped to get the quilt top, batting and backing ready to quilt. He made all the meals during that time.

When my shoulders and neck ached in protest from doing the hand basting and then maneuvering the quilt while doing the machine quilting and then again while hand sewing the binding to the back, Dave provided much needed massages so that I could push through and get it finished to send to her.

I’ve decided to call the quilt “Ohana Aloha.” It is my hope that whenever she needs to feel us near that she’ll wrap the quilt around her and feel her family’s love for her.


I would be so pleased if you chose to share by clicking on one of the buttons below!


  • stephanie
    March 14, 2013 8:29 am

    Well done Super Mom! It’s like sending her a Super Cape for strength.
    Best Wishes to all.

  • Gretchen
    March 14, 2013 8:43 am

    Beautiful in both material ways and in sentiment! She will feel your hugs when she wraps up in this quilt.

  • Elaine
    March 14, 2013 2:03 pm

    Very nice I love the hidden words idea! Also question I saw your comment over on simplify.. How do you see who has signed up for email update on your blog? I think I need a tutorial lol!

  • Vickie Horsfall
    March 14, 2013 2:35 pm

    What a beautiful treasure you have made for your daughter. What a treasure she has in having two wonderful parents. Wishing all of you the best of each other.


  • Sharon B
    March 15, 2013 11:49 am

    I am so glad I stopped by. This quilt is absolutely beautiful in so many ways. I actually teared up a little reading the story and how your husband helped with it too. Very touching and something your daughter will treasure. There is clearly love in every stitch here. Sharon

  • Christi Wilson
    March 15, 2013 1:11 pm

    This is gorgeous! My grandmother was a quilter, and I just loved to see the products of her hands. She made some amazing quilts! This is the first one I’ve seen like this. What a beautiful gift to give your children!

  • wendy
    March 15, 2013 2:15 pm

    How lovely, I’m sure this quilt will mean the world to her.

  • Beth
    March 15, 2013 3:24 pm

    What a beautiful quilt and finish. I love the sentiments you added. I am sure she will feel the love in this one!

  • Beth
    March 16, 2013 10:34 pm

    what a super job and what a special gift to send her

  • bobbi
    March 20, 2013 8:07 pm

    what a beautiful quilt! Love it!

  • Dee
    March 21, 2013 3:20 pm

    I once read a “Sister Chicks” book that taled about Aloha having a deeper meaning than a greeting, farewell or salutation…that it could be an invocation of the Divine and a blessing. Your quilt says a lot!

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