I'm dreaming of a surfer Christmas

I'm glad the Obamas are spending a week or so in Hawaii. I hope the little girls are loving the island fashions. Maybe Michelle is checking out the Hawaiian quilting tradition.

When I was a child our very generous next door neighbor used to bring us Christmas gifts from Hawaii. We loved dressing up in shirts or muu-muus with bold floral patterns, leis and seed bracelets.

The guys behind the post office counter at 8:30 this morning looked like Maytag repairmen. This must be the slowest mail day of the year after a month of postal mania. When I told the man I couldn't stand any more Liberty Bells he was glad to show me some Hawaii statehood surfer stamps. I'm hearing that Hawaii Five-O theme song!

When the International Quilt Study Center opened in Lincoln, Nebraska, I saw my first Hawaiian quilt. It resembled a child's folded cut-out snowflake in red and white, but with island vegetation shapes. As a paper-cutter, I was intrigued. New England missionaries brought the idea of quilting to the Hawaiian natives in the early 1800s, along with new fabrics. There's something wonderful about the quilts that makes me feel a sweet aloha dream must be guaranteed for every user, Presidents included.

© 2009 Nancy L. Ruder

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