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Knots of love
Group makes blankets to warm hospice patients
WEBknotters 4 more knotting JD
Flanked by a stack of material, Sue Maciolek works on a blanket. - photo by Jim Dean
A group of nearly 20 women at Cumming First United Methodist Church are knot happy.

Every month, the group meets to create fleece blankets for hospice patients by tying knots.

Dubbed the Happy Knotters, the organization is a brainchild of Kathie Stasko, a minister at the church.

“We started as an outgrowth of the One Great Day of Service that our church does every year,” she said. “So far, we’ve donated over 125 blankets to the Hospice of North Georgia in  Gainesville.”
In her spare time, Stasko cuts two 54-by-48-inch pieces of fleece. Then, on the fourth Saturday of every month, the 17 volunteers tie them into blankets.

“I cut 1-inch-wide strips all the way around the blanket and we put the two pieces of fleece together and we knot those pieces together,” she said. “When we finish every month, the blankets are taken to hospice the next week.”

In addition to blankets, some volunteers make gowns for patients, Stasko said.

Fabric for each blanket costs between $12 and $15.

“There’s only so many we can afford to make every month,” she said. “This is church-sponsored, so we rely on donations.”

It’s a small group, but members range in age from 13 to 80. In fact, Mary Jones just celebrated her 80th birthday.
Jones has been a member since the group formally organized in May.

“It doesn’t take any talent or anything, you just sit and tie knots,” she said. “My health’s not the best in the world and I might need help too someday.

“I don’t really know how to put it into words, but I feel good about it and the fellowship with the other people means a lot.”

Stasko said it also means a lot to the patients, many of whom have sent “thank-you” cards for the group’s efforts.

“There’s nothing more heartwarming than to hear that we brought a little bit of comfort in somebody’s life that at that moment in time doesn’t have a lot of things that are comforting,” she said. “That is why we do what we do.”
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