I left Manitoba when I was just 17. I can't be sure how exactly I convinced my parents to let me move 2500 kilometers away, but I'm grateful they did every day. It was a surprising decision to many who knew me: I didn't know anyone where I was going, and Winnipeg, a city of 700,000 people, seemed unbelievably, unmanageably big. But I think everyone should have their own adventure at least once in their life, and this was going to be mine.
I had no idea I'd be so inclined to stay in Ontario. The longer I stay here, though, the more and more I realize how much Manitoba made me who I am.
Wide open spaces made me appreciate how lucky we are to have land, trees, and fresh air, and the importance of taking care of them. Farming communities showed me the importance of agriculture, while teaching me about local economy and our dependance on one another. The family cottage, built by my grandfather with the help of my dad and my uncle, helped me understand how places and buildings connect us to our past and the people we love when we can't be together. Being someone with a minority political opinion, I learned quickly about the importance of fairness, but also about diplomacy and communication.
And being so far away from my first home, I learned my family and friends are the most important things in my life.
I wanted a way to bring a little piece of Manitoba to Toronto, and I've been mulling over a way to express my love for my home province in quilt form. Eventually, I came up with this pattern for a mini quilt, and, of course, it had to be pink. Because of all of the small pieces and funny angles, I paper pieced the top. The backing is a piece of vintage fabric that my grandmother once used to decorate our family cottage. Hand quilting felt the only right way to finish my mini.
I really love my new mini quilt. Now the only thing left is to decide where to hang it ...