I have been blessed with in-laws that I both love and respect; and so, I miss my father-in-law very much. In the eighteen months of so before his passing I had really gotten to know him. With Sherie off to Turkministan Dave became a regular at our dinner table and in our family time. He played Wii on rainy days, wrestled with the girls, shot with David in the backyard and had wonderful conversations with Adriel and I about life and God and the kids.
After Dave died I decided that it might help David if he had something to comfort him and remind him of grandpa so I asked Sherie for any shirts that the boys hadn't taken so that I could make a quilt. She generously brought over a whole bag of clothes. Never-mind that I had never been interested in quilting or that I had no idea what I was doing, if my boy needed a quilt I was going to figure it out!
As a side note, it is amazing the things I have learned because my kids needed me to learn them. That is a post for another day though.
It turns out that I had enough shirts for multiple quilts so I decided that David's quilt should not be the first one. I didn't want to make all of the mistakes on his, so I made a trial quilt. I had a lot of help from the quilting moms at The Well Trained Mind board who tirelessly answered my questions and gave detailed instructions.
Making this quilt was, by turns, fun, challenging and full of grief. The shirts smell like Dave and they reminded me that when we saw him we all got great big hugs. The kids were a great joy to Grandpa Dave and if he ever tired of them we never knew it. He was the kind of person who made you feel better just by being around him and when you talked he really listened.
In honor of this amazing man, here is the first David H. Henderson memorial quilt. The kids call it the "Grandpa Quilt".