IFAQH: Surprise Quilted Hearts Spread Joy in Cities Like Royal Oak, Troy, Novi, Pontiac & South Lyon
(CP Proxmire, July 18, 2019)
Pontiac, MI- As dozens of people left a well-attended Oakland County Board of Commission meeting Thursday, no one seemed to notice the piece of fabric flapping in the breeze beneath a bench outside the County Courthouse. If they had, they would have received a message of love, “meant to be yours.”
The fabric was actually a heart-shaped ornament, stitched together with different black and white patterned cloths and accented with a baby blue button and ribbon for hanging. There was also a tag. “I need a home,” it said.
The heart is part of an international movement dating back to at least 2014. The website www.ifaqh.com (I Found A Quilted Heart) tells the story of three sisters and their husbands out hiking in the Valley of Fire in Nevada, where they found a quilted heart left inside a cave.
“We may never know who placed that quilted heart in the desert of Nevada, but we are thankful for that little heart. This beautiful little heart started a whole new purpose for us; blessing others with the same simple act of kindness,” the author wrote.
They also gave instructions for how this is “Sew, sow, so” simple. Anyone can “sew” a quilted heart to share, then “sow” it for others to find. The reason for this? “So” it can find a new home. “Oh the simple joys in life,” ends the author’s explanation.
When someone finds a heart, they’re encouraged to share the story on Facebook or on the ifaqh.com website.
On the same day the black and white heart was found in Pontiac, a librarian at the Salem-South Lyon District also found one. Names are not used on the site (though we hope to add it!), but the description tells the story. “I was working and shelving books when I found this lovely heart on a bookshelf at the Salem-South Lyon District Library in Michigan. My heart is very patriotic. It has blue and red stripes with gold stars all over it. A blue pin with a six pointed star was placed at the top of the heart. It has a sparkly red ribbon so that I might hang my heart somewhere special so that I see it often.”
A heart with many layers of brown and a yellow kitty face was found in Royal Oak. “I found my quilted heart in the hospital that I am employed. I found it at the start of my work day. It made my heart melt the moment I found it. It is so cute and it has a cat charm so I know it was meant for me because I love cats. I keep it on the bag I take to work and every time I look at it I smile,” the poster wrote.
Several others were found at Beaumont in Royal Oak. On the day the heart was found in Pontiac, over 50 nurses had attended the County Commission meeting, with a discussion taking place around potential unionization. This could, of course, be a coincidence. But either way, love is making the rounds.
Another heart found in Beaumont, back in February, illustrates the challenge many people feel when faced with an unexpected gift or opportunity.
“Today I was at Beaumont Hospital for some testing. As I got ready to leave I found this heart with a note saying “I need a home”. At first I wasn’t going to take it thinking that in a hospital, there are probably many others that could use it more than me. Then I thought, someone thinks I need it, otherwise I wouldn’t have found it. So for now I’m keeping this cheery yellow heart. A reminder of the good in our world. Whoever made it, thank you and bless you,” the recipient wrote. Their heart had green plaid paired with a pattern of sunshine-flowers and start, with a yellow button and ribbon.
In Michigan there have been over 300 hearts reported. Others locally included Rochester Hills, and Novi. One was found at Fresh Thyme in Troy.
Leo’s Coney Island in Downtown Royal Oak was another spot. “I found my quilted heart while I was at work. I work at Leo’s Coney Island in Royal Oak, Michigan. Someone hung it on the coat hook at one of our tables. I found it and thought it was adorable so I took it home with me. I think these are a wonderful idea. The thought that someone took time out of their busy life to leave a little treasure for me to find made my day!!! Keep up the great work!! I now keep it in my room at home. It’s hanging proudly on my wall.”
Learn more about this heart-warming tradition at www.ifaqh.com.