The Enabler

My husband readily enables my obsessions with books, fabric and sewing machines.

Last year I declared, “I have too many sewing machines. We need more space.”

 I rehomed several machines and had space until my son Mert said, “I know this thrift shop with fabric.” Walking in I saw the cutest 1970s machine. It glowed with orange and yellow hippie flowers and only cost $15. I had never seen one like it. I resolutely walked away to look at fabrics. Fabriholics always need more fabric and thrifted fabric quenches my desire without bankrupting us. 

While he waited for me to choose, Hubby sat beside the sewing machine. He tested its movement. When I returned carrying heaps of fabric, he said, “Did you think about buying this machine?”

“No, we have enough.”

“It works.”

“Well, let me see,” I plugged it in and pressed the pedal. It ran smoothly and looked so cute that I bought it. I sewed with it until I found someone who needed it more than I did. 

Recently, I cut back to three machines to use plus two set aside for grandchildren. 

Then, in one week’s time, three machines arrived needing Hubby’s attention. He could not fix them before we left to visit several relatives, the last being his niece Rochelle.

When I suggested a visit she said, “Let’s meet at the thrift store where I work. We got a donation of fabric and I thought of you.” She had said nothing at the time because we live hundreds of miles apart.

First we walked past loaded bookshelves, “All the books are free,” she said. 

“Really? I am always looking for Christian literature and Bibles to donate.” I bent over to read the titles.

“Let me show you what we have over here,” Rochelle led me out to the warehouse where volunteers sorted and shelved donations. In a room with a dozen full bookcases and boxes of books all around, a husband and wife worked. “We started sorting books a week or two ago when all the shelves were empty,” the wife said. 

“I am looking for Bibles and Christian literature.”

“We have a shelf of Bibles. They are all free,” the husband pointed to a deep shelf, filled three layers deep with Bibles. 

“I’ll take all the Bibles if I may.” We filled two boxes with Bibles.

His wife began pulling study guides, children’s Bible story books and dictionaries after I mentioned them.

My husband wandered in from talking with his niece. I waved him over, “I have some boxes for Love Packages, plus, a box of books for me.” 

He began toting books to the car. That added four boxes to five we had gathered for Love Packages during our visit  in Indiana. We both knew the need for them after volunteering at Love Packages in Butler, Ill.

“We will need more room. I want to get some fabric,” I said.

He rearranged and Rochelle showed me the stacks and shelves of totes filled with quilting fabrics, orphan blocks and fat quarters of fabric from another fabriholics’ stash.

I did not have room to take it all, but I tried. It took a while to stuff the totes full.

As I prepared to leave, a volunteer asked, “Would you want sewing machines? We have two.”

“I will look but I have three we still need to repair,” I said. 

I looked at them and backed away, “No, I better not.” The volunteer shoved them back in place. I went to the van. I saw plenty of space for at least one more tote of fabric.

 Meanwhile, my husband saw the machines and asked, “Do they work? Let me see. This needs cleaning, but …. Hmm.” He placed those machines into the last bit of open space. The ladies came from the warehouse with a collection of sewing machine accessories that fit around and between the machines.

I shook my head. “He is an enabler,” I said to the volunteers. 

I’m not complaining. We connected with a relative, had fun and fed my addictions. Plus, we left with more ways to keep Hubby busy which suits this wife any day of the week.