17 days remain in the Summer Challenge

Hello and happy Sunday.

It has been a bit since the last post. The kids and I have been rearranging schedules and adjusting to the new schools. I wasn’t aware of how much time my going back to school was going to take, but we survived the first week. I am looking forward to fall. The cooler temps and and the routine that comes with settling in.

The summer challenge is almost over. I am surrounded by squares. Everywhere I look I see a box or bag stuffed with squares. I can honestly say it is a bit overwhelming to have squares crammed into as many open spaces as possible. It’s a happy problem to have. At last count I had in my possession 1,582 squares from 26 states and three Canadian provinces. That means we will be able to make almost 53 blankets from the Summer 2013 Challenge. You all blew away the goal of 1,000 squares.

I mentioned on facebook that I will be planning a pot-luck sorting party in Saline, Michigan. I will be going tomorrow to book the ball room at the American Legion. The person in charge of scheduling said September was completely booked so we are looking at a Sunday afternoon in October. I will update with the info as soon as it is set in stone this week.

Until then check out the photos. Great job people!!! You have made our Summer challenge a huge success and have touched many children with your squares!

 

Remember this is an on-going project. Squares are always needed and welcome.

Leah

WE DID IT!!!!!

Hello to all the L2 followers.

I am over-joyed to be able to say WE DID IT!!! We have reached the 1000 square goal a full two months early. You can say we smashed that goal because we have 1176 beautiful and unique squares ready to be sorted with the promise of more to come. It makes my heart smile to do the math IMG_20130723_130040and see that thirty-nine child afghans will be made with these squares. This will be the largest number to date of blankets we are able to donate at once.

When I started Love-Squared over two years ago I was afraid I would be making these blankets myself. I still worry after each donation that this is IMG_20130723_120259 the last. I should stop worrying. You have all shown that you care about this as much as I do. Squares have come in from all over the United State and Canada. There was one week I was worried the postal carrier would go on strike if she had to deliver another package. Once it was explained what was in all of the boxes and envelopes she was more than happy to leave them in a water-proof bin to keep them safe. She even smiled the next day she handed over a box of squares.  I think I’ll print a photo of all of the squares and give it to her in a thank you card.

Many of you who know me in person know I am constantly thinking and wondering and planning. I can’t say all of the thinking and planning goes the way I think it should, but I try. Right now I am thinking about and planning a sorting and seaming pot-luck afternoon. A group of people coming together, “ooh’s ” and “Aahh’s” over the gorgeous squares and the laughter that always comes with trying to sort so many unique squares into blankets. What could be better? I will finalize my planning and get the information posted soon.

Pat yourself on the back, let out a whoop of joy for smashing the goal and enjoy the photos of squares. You all deserve it! I say it often, but I can’t do this and keep it going without all of you. The challenge may be over soon, but this is an organization without an end.  Keep the squares coming.

Leah

 

The Yarn Community is a Wonderful Group of People

Hello to all.

As the title states, “The yarn community is a wonderful group of people.” You prove it every day. There are so many charities that are flooded with donations from hundreds and even thousands of people. The huge out pouring of support for Love Squared over the past two years is more than I had imagined it could be.

I had the pleasure on Tuesday of donating THIRTY-THREE of our afghans to Family House. This latest donation brings our total to over 100 blankets donated to children in need. To put that in an even more amazing perspective: that means you have donated over 3000 squares!! How amazing is that.

I have received several questions asking why we donate primarily to Family House and if we plan to donate to other shelters. Love-Squared has a special relationship with Family House. When we were just getting started Renee, the director of the shelter, was the only person to take an interest in or even want our afghans. While Family House will always receive afghans from Love-Squared, we have donated to other organizations and I do plan on supporting other shelters and organizations. I am doing a lot of brainstorming and working on a game plan for expansion. The growth of Love-Squared is steady. As long as the squares keep coming in we will be able to reach out to the overwhelming need.

To close out this post I will update the 1000 Squares Challenge. The squares have been pouring in from all over. The total number of states is 16, plus one province in Canada so far. Crazy! I have pledges and emails stating squares have been sent which would take us over the 1000 mark. I am only counting squares in my possession and that number is  826. You are going to smash the goal by the end of July. A full two months early.

Keep the emails, facebook posts and ravelry posts coming. I love hearing from you and try to answer questions the best I can. Keep the squares coming!!!

An exciting update

 

Hello to all.

I wanted to share a bit of news with everyone. Some of you know that we are moving so there is a new address. I updated it on the site about a month ago, but want to state again that we no longer have the PO Box we have always used. Love-Squared is still in full swing and nothing, but the address is changing.
Now for the fun and exciting information. I have been keeping a tally and posting pictures of squares that have been coming in on the facebook page. It is time I update here as well. The postal carriers have been busy. It seems there is a new package every two or three days. I love it!! Since the challenge was first announced on April 25, we have received 724 squares. Isn’t that amazing? I am truly shocked. We only have 276 more squares to go before we reach our goal by September 25. I have received quite a few emails about squares in the mail and pledges of squares. I am positive we are going to reach the goal before the end of July.

I have also been compiling a list of where the squares have come from. I can now say we have gone international with the addition of squares coming from two provinces of Canada. I will be adding a map to the site soon with a little pin representing each place place of origin. Here is a list of states we have already received packages from. There are people in several other states who have pledged squares. I will add them to the list when they arrive. This list makes me so happy.

Michigan
Minnesota
Massachusetts
Ohio
New Mexico
New York
Montana
Maryland
Maine
Georgia
California
Oregon
North Carolina

We are making headway on the 1000 squares goal

Hello to everyone reading.

We have been receiving some great squares from all over. We currently have 402 squares!!! Isn’t that amazing? We only need 598 squares to reach the goal by September 25, 2013.

 

I would also like to announce love-squared has been written about in the knitting nuggets newsletter. You can see it at http://www.knittingforcharity.org/join_love_squared_a_knitting_charity_supporting_and_warming_.html

Please take a minute to explore their site. They have a lot of good tips, ideas and links.

 

Keep the squares coming!

Leah

I CHALLENGE ALL OF YOU TO 1000 SQUARES

  The 2013 Spring/Summer 1000 Squares Challenge

 

 

With the warmer weather we always see a decrease in square donations. To help offset this I am issuing a challenge to all of you. Help us reach our goal of 1000 squares by September 25, 2013. These 1000 squares will be used to make thirty-three afghans for our country’s homeless children and youth. I know we can do it. We already have 294 squares, 2 baby blankets and two full afghans donated this week.

SPREAD THE WORD, CHALLENGE YOURSELF, CHALLENGE YOUR FRIENDS

I would love to hear about your square goals and any square races or challenges you issue to your friends.

I’ll keep you updated with the numbers and photos of the squares!!!

Leah

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just keep Sorting, Sorting, Sorting and Then Seaming, Seaming, Seaming

Hello to all of you and HAPPY FRIDAY!

The latest donation was dropped off at Family House two weeks ago. There were a total of 22 afghans which turned out to be a great number. Not only does that mean you all have made and donated 660 squares, it was also the number of families currently residing at Family House. We were able to provide a bit of love and comfort to each family. While that is wonderful I am also working over time to get twelve more blankets done and to Family House as quickly as I can. There are 34 children, including two tiny newborns, living at Family House. I know we can make sure every child has their own blanket. In order to get twelve more blankets finished there was a lot of sorting needing to be done.

 

My earlier estimation of 600 squares waiting to be sorted was close. We actually had almost 800! Amazing work everyone!! I decided there wasn’t a better time to sort squares than when my husband was out of town. If any of you have seen the facebook page you already know what sorting looks like. My house may not be large, but the great amount of squares took up two rooms of my house. My four children jumped in and started separating the squares by color. My daughter even organized squares into an afghan. I will have to remember her skills in the future. She has an eye for these things. I spent two days fitting squares together for afghans. When my husband came home it still looked like a yarn store had exploded in my living room and dining room. Many photos were taken and posted to facebook for feedback. I had several people helping choose square combinations via internet. Then, the lovely Christie came to visit with coffee. She and I were able to knock out the rest of the squares in five hours. I will forever owe her caramel lattes from Chandler Cafe. Oliver thought the coffee was quite delicious. Enough so he poured her latte into a cup and drank it himself. Sorry, Christie! Christie saved the morning with coffee, but she also saved my sanity and a few afghans. After several days of staring at squares the colors and patterns were starting to blur. She put together a group of squares I would have never thought would work in an afghan. It took a while, and Christie sitting down to crochet a couple more squares to make it work, but in the end it was one of the more fun afghans. In all, Christie crocheted five squares that day to make sure an afghan was finished and looking it’s best. Thank you for that. That means two more blankets are ready to be made instead of going back into the pile to wait for the next sorting. At the end of the day we have 23 blankets needing to be seemed and a box of about 150 squares in reserve needing other squares to make them great.

Boxing them up

Today, I will be meeting a woman who found us via facebook. She is so excited to get involved with Love-Squared. In her words she is “crocheting squares like mad.” As a big bonus she also wants to learn how to seam them together. I am so grateful for people who want to help seam the squares. More hands make a huge job so much quicker.

I cannot thank any of you enough for the time you spend making squares, seaming, and spreading the word of LOVE-SQUARED. There are over 70 children with our blankets now and very soon another 23 will be donated. Please keep the squares coming! These blankets mean so much to the children who receive them.

Leah

Saying “goodbye”

I am very sad to say goodbye to my favorite place in Sylvania, Ohio.  The Dragonfly Tea Cottage was a  magical place that had a treat for all five senses. Everyone was met at the door like a life-long friend. A bad day melted away as soon as one stepped inside the house.  A quick lunch with a friend always turned into two hours of excellent food, comforting atmosphere and conversation and laughter.

Jennifer, the beautiful woman who owns the Dragonfly, is the person who told me I needed to run with the idea of Love-Squared. She embraced it and should be proud to know that close to half of all the donated squares to date came from her patrons.

Sylvania is losing a treasure. I am going to miss stopping in for lunch, knitting on the porch and the smile I got every time I drove past the cheery house on Main Street. Good luck with everything you do, Jennifer! You have touched so many lives through the Dragonfly.

 

The First Donation of 2013

Happy Sunday. I have been neglecting the blog for the past several months. I think I have just found it quicker to post of the facebook page. I believe I reach a much larger audience there too. Most of you have read the latest news, but I will do a quick recap here.

With the help of Katie, Love-Squared is taking the steps to become a legally recognized non-profit. I am finalizing the paperwork and sending it out this week. This is an exciting and important step. With the legal non-profit status Love-Squared will be able to receive cash donations as well as donations of supplies from yarn and craft stores.

The last donation of 2012: We donated ten afghans to The Neighborhood Church in Toledo, Ohio, in November. The Neighborhood Church serves the poorest neighborhood in Toledo. There was an urgent need for blankets when the weather tuned cold. Their blanket drive collected enough blankets to give ONE blanket to each family. That should never happen. When Jennifer, owner of The Dragonfly Tea Cottage posted the need for blankets we were able to step up.  Thanks to the generosity of the Love-Squared supporters  and Kathy’s quick seaming skills.

The first donation of 2013: On Tuesday I will be dropping off twenty-two afghans to Family House. Twenty-two afghans is 660 squares! You have all been so busy making squares and Kathy and I have been just as busy getting them put together. There are going to be some very happy children when they receive their blanket. They are all so cheerful and soft. I believe you have all out done yourselves! You should all be very proud of your work.

Enjoy the slideshow of 16 of the newest afghans being donated. As always, keep the squares coming and tell everyone you know. Word of mouth and social media keeps up going strong.

 

 

Phew! What a summer

It has been way too long since the last blog post. Kids out of school, my husband’s motorcycle accident and computers with their own agenda took up the majority of my time. Through all of this I have been plugging away at turning these squares into afghans and posting on www.facebook.com/lovesquared2. The kids are back in school, the husband has recovered and the computers are cooperating for time being. I am now able to devote more time to the squares and starting the process of getting the 501(c)(3) status. With the legal non-profit status we will be able to move forward a little easier. Craft and yarn companies, as well as private donors, will be able to donate end of season yarn, supplies and funds to us while getting a tax break. We will also be able to apply for grants that could pay for people’s postage for sending squares. It opens so many more possibilities. It is a long process, but I will be making it happen.

As you all know, Family House of Toledo receives our afghans. Due to funding cuts they have had to cut their food assistance programs.  Love-Squared and the Dragonfly Tea Cottage in Sylvania, OH, are sponsoring a food drive to help stock the Family House pantry. There will  be a drop off box at the Dragonfly for non-perishable food items from from Tuesday, September 18 – October 12, 2012. The beautiful owner of the Dragonfly is giving away a free cup of tea with your donation and purchased lunch. While you are there enjoying your free tea, check out the menu and please be sure to thank Jen for being such a HUGE supporter of Love-Squared.I am still working on other donation drop off sites and will post them here and on facebook.

Speaking of the Dragonfly support. My friend, Michelle, and I went in for lunch. The first thing Jen said was, “I have a bunch of squares and blankets for you.” I love hearing that. Wast I wasn’t expecting was a bunch of squares and FOUR full afghans. Tavia and her friends were busy while on their two week vacation. You ladies blow me away. I have posted the photos on facebook, but I am going to post them here too. I wish the camera could show how soft they are. I know the children who get their love-Squared blanket are going to hold onto them for years and years.

Until the next post, Happy Monday to all of you. Keep sending in those squares! There are lots of photos to post today and this week.