Comfort from a Country Quilt

Comfort from a Country Quilt

Through down-home storytelling, Reba McEntire offers her fans a glimpse into her personal life, as well as a healthy dose of traditional, God-lovin' values. Like a quilt, McEntire's book of country comfort is stitched from real-life material--little scraps of wisdom that miraculously piece together into a heartfelt mosaic.

 
 

Chapter Excerpt

Have you ever made a quilt? I have. It's one of the most therapeutic and calming things I've ever done. And I had a huge sense of accomplishment when I finished.

Both of my Grandmothers made quilts, my Mama did, and my Aunt Jeannie did. I loved to open that big box at Christmas time knowing it was a quilt that one of them had made. I was so flattered that after all the time and energy they had spent on that quilt, they gave it to me. I'll cherish it always.

Back when I was living at home, I remember during the winter months, Mama would sit up at her sewing machine in the living room over by the window. At night when we'd all be in there watching TV after supper, Mama would be over at her sewing machine, making another quilt from the scraps left over from a dress or blouse she had made earlier.

Then when she had all the squares sewn together, she'd lay the batting on the living room floor, lay the quilted piece on top of that and then start tacking it down. When that was completed, she'd sew the border around it. Then it was finished. It was just a question of who would be the proud recipient of so many hours of love.

I feel very blessed to have received one of Mama's quilts. I sleep under it every night I'm home. It doesn't match the fancy comforter we bought in Los Angeles, but it feels better than anything you can imagine. Just because I know my Mama made it just for me.

When Daddy's Mother died in 1950 one year before Alice was born, Mama got the trunk with all of Grandma's quilts, china, crystal, silverware and nick-nacks that she had collected during her lifetime. Along with all of that, there were a few quilt pieces that she had started but never finished. Susie wound up with them, meaning to finish them out and keep them for herself.

But as only Susie would do, she cut the makings of the quilt into four squares, had them quilted, put a picture of Grandma McEntire and a description of the quilt together and had it framed for Alice's, Pake's and my Christmas present.

That's how thoughtful Susie is. She could have kept the quilt for herself, but instead, she shared something so special that had belonged to a woman none of us had ever met, with her brother and sisters. That's part of Susie's charm.

That's also the charm of a quilt. Like a Mother, it wraps its arms around you so soft, so sturdy and so comforting. It brings people together when they sew on a quilt. Can't you just imagine the visiting, the stories and the fellowship that has gone on during the making of all the quilts in the past? And can't you imagine all the children who have been tucked securely in their beds night after night?

That's what you call "Comfort From A Country Quilt." I hope this book is as comforting to you as my Mama's quilt was to me. Because in this book, I have pieced together all my favorite stories about wonderful people I've known and great places I've been in my life.

So grab a quilt, wrap up, get comfortable and enjoy.

Reba: My Story

Reba: My Story

Country music superstar Reba McEntire describes her Oklahoma childhood as a member of a cattle ranching family, her early days as a performer, her award-winning musical achievements, the tragic loss of her eight band members, and her marriages.

 
 

Chapter Excerpt

My Daddy, Clark Vincent McEntire, is a former three-time world-champion tie-down steer roper. He began roping when he was a small boy and entered his first amateur roping contest when he was twelve, in 1939. It happened almost by accident, when Eddie Curtis, Daddy's friend, asked him, "Are you going to rope?"

"Don't guess," Daddy said."Don't guess," Daddy said.

"You are now," Eddie said, after pitching down three dollars for an entry fee.

"I don't have a horse," Daddy said.

"You can ride mine," said Dick Truitt, a former World's Champion steer roper and friend of the family.

Daddy wondered what in the world he would have done if he had caught the calf. They were great big calves (350 pounds).

Daddy turned professional when he won the Pendleton Round-Up All-Around Cowboy roping contest at seven, and by 1949 he was the fifth-highest-paid steer roper in the Rodeo Cowboy Association. That year he won $1,222. In 1957,the biggest year he ever had, he earned $5,184.

I once asked him if winning the championship was as good as getting there. He said, "No, the fun to me was seeing if I could beat 'em and win the money. After I won, it was like, 'So what?'"I'm a lot like my Daddy.