Planes, Trains, and Automobiles Play Mat Quilt


Planes, Trains and Automobiles Play Quilt

So, my friend Clint has cancer.  He’s been fighting so long, and has so much support from an amazing group of friends (even Lance Armstrong!) … but his wife Angela says he’s sleeping a lot more now, that maybe something is progressing or his body may be shutting down.  I hope it’s just a bump in the road, but realistically, no matter how much we pray or how hard he fights, the odds are against him.  I hate even saying that, it brings me to tears, but if his wife can be that strong, so can his friends, right?  I’m trying.  What I’m going to concentrate on is that we all love him, and that gives us a feeling of responsibility and a desire to help his family.  Love doesn’t quit.  I’m focusing on what I can do.

Planes, Trains and Automobiles Play Quilt

I’m not wealthy but I’m crafty, so my contributions will often involve things I’ve made.  Clint and I actually had a discussion about this.  Earlier I asked him if I could make a purse for Angela, something he could give her, because it might be nice for him to be able to surprise her.  He told me about what colors she liked and what her other bags were like, so he had a good influence on the design.  It was made just for her, from him.  We talked about ideas for this play mat/quilt for their boys, too.  I thought about making a simple play mat from felt, but then realized how much better a quilt would be in the long run.  We’ll get to that in just a minute.

Planes, Trains and Automobiles Play Quilt

Let me quickly get the details out of the way: The front is a printed fabric panel, On The Go Playmat Panel by Jill Webster.  (I bought mine here.)  The back is Michael Miller’s Ta Dot in Moss and the binding is Michael Miller’s Toot Toot Cars in Lime.  I did random straight line quilting — well, mostly random.  I did notice an usually high concentration of lines through the Sweet Shop.  Lead me not into temptation, for I can find it myself.

I’m sure the boys have lots of cars already, but just in case I’m going to send a few more, including a little train and a couple planes so they can make full use of the mat.  (I tried to find a school bus with no luck.  I might have to keep looking and send that along later.)

Planes, Trains and Automobiles Play Quilt

I love that this is a play mat, but it’s also a true quit.  The boys can pull it up on the couch as a lap quilt when they watch a movie, read a book or play a video game.  They can throw it over a chair to make a little fort or play Hide the Dog.  Montana has cold winters, so I hope this little quilt will get lots of cuddling as well as play.  It should be tough enough to stand up to whatever they can dish out, and their Mom can throw it in the washer and dryer whenever she feels the need.  It will just get softer and better the more it’s used.

That’s the thing I love best about this little quilt — it is a quilt.  I hope when the boys outgrow playing with cars, it will get tucked in a closet somewhere, almost forgotten.  Then before we know it, these little boys will grow up, get married and hopefully have little ones of their own.  Then it will be remembered, pulled off a shelf and used all over again.

From Clint to his boys to his grandkids.  Because we never really leave someone we love.

So there.  That’s the best way I have to pray.

In the words of his wife, Angela:
Cancer is a terrible thief. Clint Aaron Miller 03.08.1971 – 12.11.2011

23 thoughts on “Planes, Trains, and Automobiles Play Mat Quilt

  1. I don’t know Clint, but my heart goes out to him and his family. And Sarah to you. You are such an amazing friend for anyone to have. :-D

  2. Beautiful Sarah, I don’t know Clint but so many of you love him that I find myself praying quietly for him too. Please continue to mention him in your posts, not only to remind me to pray for him, but also to remind me to love everyone a little more in his honor.

    • Oh Amy, you made me cry! We actually have a group set up on Facebook to pray for Clint (and laugh and just say Hi) — I’ll add you to it. There are others there who don’t know him, but just want to pray. We’d love to have you there with us.

  3. Do these come in adult sizes? ;)

    Seriously, you know my live for the Millers and all that’s going on with them. This is one awesome gift. My grandmother made quilts and I unfortunately was too young and reckless to receive one (plus bringing a quilt on the tour bus would have gotten me a lot of crap I’m sure), but I always think of how many are tucked away in my parents house to be found someday. Reading that part made me smile. Gifts like these are about a lot more than today’s struggles. It will (hate saying it – ugh) remind them of a father who was bigger than they dreamed he was. I hope in many years this quilt will bring a smile to their face as they remember him and all he went through with his friends and family by his side – literally and virtually.

    Now if only it were cold in enough in Texas to justify more quilts. ;)

    • Matt, a guy who knows the value of a quilt? That is sexy as hell. :) It’s a shame you didn’t take one on tour, but it’s not too late to ask your parents to send you one of your grandmother’s old quilts. I’m sure they’d be thrilled to send it to you. Even if it just stayed thrown over the arm of a chair somewhere, seeing it would make you happy. From the way you hated saying it would be a reminder of their Dad, I know we felt the same way. I almost didn’t post this because I didn’t want to say it. Thank you for the comment — go call home for a quilt!

  4. So beautiful! ~ and the things we make with love in our heart are the most special gifts of all. The tears you cried, the joy you felt, the prayers you said all while you made the quilt is rolled into the fabric. This will now become the fabric of their lives forever. God Bless you Sarah and may God always watch over the boys all their days and the love that surrounds them in the quilt remind them of their Dad and the maker that reached out in love.

    • Diane, I hope the quilt reminds them of their Dad! Well, actually, I hope they just play with it and like it, and maybe let that be enough. And then later on, when they’re about to be Dads, then they can think about it and feel close to their Dad. (Hopefully he’ll be right beside them then. I can’t quit hanging on to that.) Thank you and God bless YOU!

  5. Sarah, The quilt is a work of art. You are so kind and thoughtful. I love you more now than ever before.

    Love you,


  6. What a perfect way to spread your thoughts, love, and prayers to the entire Miller family (and all of us too). Your heart is one of the best hearts I know. Love you!

  7. You are so caring, loving and just…my little sister :) I know your love for others is genuine and that they appreciate everything you made…because your heart is in every part of it….just as it is in the quilt for Brayden.

  8. Sarah, I love how you honor your friends with such heart. The bears made from Clint’s shirts was another wonderful idea. I love your blog and have a project you might be interested in. pls email me when you get a chance.

    P.S. We worked with Jill Webster, another gal with a big heart, to produce her “On The Go” fabric collection.

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