if you view this from the main IBOL webpage, you’ll be able to look to the right side and see the bundle count. It’s near the top, just under the listing of the various pages (About Me, FAQ, How to build a spy plane, Why cats barf, etc). No, I’m not going to give the bundle count here — go see for yourself!
Posts Tagged ‘IBOL Kitteh’
Are you in for doing the $26 Challenge? If so, go find another $1 in your wallet, purse, clutch, satchel, etc., and move it to your $26 Challenge envelope.
And here, enjoy one minute of happiness with IBOL Kitteh.
Thank you for being so patient. Just over a year after launching the Iraqi Bundles of Love (IBOL) project, it’s time to to do it again. Ladies and Gentlemen, let’s do IBOL II.
I’ll give you the details first — some of you, I’m told, are rather impatient and would rather just get to making more boxes. But if you keep reading, I’ll tell you some of how this came to be.
IBOL II, like the original IBOL project last year, is intended to be a short-duration project. And like last time, it’s intended to surge fabric and sewing (and knitting!) materials into Salah ad Din, in northern Iraq (where I was last year, too). The general premise is the same. Willing contributors can send a flat-rate box of sewing / quilting / knitting supplies, all bundled up. Once it’s there, someone will open the box, pull out the fully-contained bundle, and hand it off (with others) for distribution in the SaD area. The stated intent of this operation is to put sewing and quilting and knitting supplies into the hands of two types of recipients: locals who desperately need such things, and local sewing co-ops and other small businesses who have received grants or loans (typically to purchase sewing machines, rent space, etc).
Like last time, there’s no press release, no announcement on Oprah, no guest appearance on the Colbert Report. There will be blog posts, emails, some photos, some silliness, some IBOL kittehs, and — you can count on it — some ice cream. Email your guild, call your sister — tell ‘em it’s time to do this again. IBOL is still going to work via word of mouth.
It’s a chance for all of us to go into our stashes — our fabric, our yarn, our needles, our thread — and find some stuff that we’re willing to share with our partners in Iraq. No one expects you to empty your stash — it’s a chance to give a little.
Here’s the most important thing: Packages for IBOL 2.1 (because I hope there will be a 2.2 and a 2.3!) need to be in the mail not later than 01 October (that’s a Friday). Do you think you can do that? In the mail, not later than 01 October. That’s just over a month from now. Click below to read more of the details.
I am slowly trying to catch up on other IBOL related things, now that there are six pallets built, waiting to go. Today, I finally got to the box of cards, notes, and other seemingly-non-edible things that people included in their IBOL boxes.
Cards, photos, notes, and even drawings from kids. All kinds of neat things.
I had thought that the best was going to be the family photos from Edie. But no — the best was literally saved for last. Here’s what Susan sent.
Pretty darn tootin’ cool, I think.
I went to the warehouse today. Folks, we need to talk.
1. Right now, you do not want to play me at Tetris. I will win. I have packed bajillions of IBOL boxes into and out of the truck in recent weeks. I have it down to a science.
2. Let me see a show of hands — how many of you wrote a warm, heartfelt note to me and stuck it in with you bundle, before closing it up and mailing it? One, two, three, four — that’s what I thought. Apparently, nearly all of you did. It’s enough that you’re helping with this project — you didn’t need to go and get all flowery and mushy and thanky on me. I’m a hardened killer — I’m not suppose to be getting all choked up and stuff.
3. I did make it to the warehouse today. I said some very bad words when I walked into the warehouse. Some very bad words. For the first time in a long time, I was damn near speechless. Here’s a little of what I saw.
4. Here’s the view of my drive to the warehouse. You might look at this and think, “ugh!” I look at it and ask, “When can I go running again?” I run along this road, in the dead of night, a few times a week, and it’s an awesome little stretch of road.
Oh, and I totally almost forgot. You’re going to want to see this.
By the power invested in me, by the teeming masses of IBOL Supporters, I do hereby make the following degree:
1. This Sunday shall henceforth be known as IBOL Sundae;
2. This Sunday, IBOL Sundae, shall be celebrated with elaborate ice cream treats, preferably in a bowl and garnished with outrageous toppings before eaten with a spoon that is much too big;
3. Supporters of IBOL Supporters, to include but not limited to husbands, wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, significant others, kids, and kittehs, shall be honored for their support of the IBOL Supporters by also be gifted with elaborate frozen dairy product concoctions;
4. And in keeping with the finest quilting and knitting weekends, photos of these whimsical yet scrumptious creations shall be taken before and during consumption, and shared liberally across these interwebs things.
Celebrate in the greatness that comes with being an IBOL Supporter, and in the glory of the wonder of the weekend. You have certainly earned it, and for someone of you, you may need the extra energy because it sounds like you have a lot of boxes to mail on Tuesday.
Me, I’ll be packing it in, getting ready to manhandle the 14,000 boxes that are apparently headed this way. What’s the old saying? Oh, yeah — “Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow you may work at IBOL World Headquarters.”
And remember — stuff in the mail on the 8th is A-OK!
This week has probably brought 10,000 visitors to this site. Yes, that includes repeat offenders, er, I mean, visitors. Still, though — that’s some traffic. My inbox, I am thrilled to say, has been chock-full of comments from folks asking for the address and / or asking questions. Which is pretty darn-tootin’ cool, as I see it.
Speaking of which, I think there are two things I am going to try and focus on this week. OK, three — since one thing is to make the first deliveries.
Theme 1 for this week: humor. I joke about how this started with a vision of bundles that would be measures in tens, but now it’s probably going to be measured in hundreds. Please don’t think that this is work for me. I’m having a ball. Sure, there’s a lot to do, but I still get to sleep at night, I still get my two meals a day. I make it up to the laundry drop off every few days. But it’s a lot of fun. The absolute funniest was a customs form on one of the bundles that arrived. The form has a place where it asks what to do with the package if it’s undeliverable. The sender wrote, “Give to local Iraqi police.” So, look for the funnies this week.
Theme 2 for this week: bigger is better. Some of the bundles that have arrived have been filled with giant ball-thingies of yarn (yes, I realize there’s a technical name of them, I just have no idea what that is). Well, some are just plain stuffed, too. And some of the pieces of fabric have been really big. I see these things, and the little gears in my head start to spin. Small things are good, but big is better.
Oh, and if you’re worried that the rapid growth of this thing is getting to be too much, don’t. I have a few back-channel discussions ongoing with some real-heavyweights about just how big this thing can get, but really, I’m committed to this. You do not need to worry about it — we will take care of this end.
Two Three last things. Bundles from the US, in the flat rate boxes, seem to be taking about 10 days to get here. Traffic to the website, and folks looking to help, increased significantly starting last Friday, a week ago. So, if the weather holds, it should rain boxes late this week, I think. I added a running count to the top right corner of the column to the right (look up top over here —>), so you should b able to check in and see how it’s going.
I have a press guy now. Really. So, attention mainstream media, leave a comment and I will put you in touch with my media guy. Apparently, photos and text and even TV are possible. I don’t know if the Army will pay for me to take a business trip, to be a guest speaker at your Sock-a-palooza or national quilt convention show thingy, but I can certainly put you in touch with the guy to ask. Why am I even mentioning this? Yep — you guessed it, I’ve had inquiries.
And I got an owie.
Apparently, training for a marathon, in the dark on a near-moonless night, after midnight and in the desert, should probably include the active use of a flashlight, not the passive use of a flashlight. I busted up the knee, and sprained an ankle. But I went on to run 7 more miles, just with a slower pace than normal.
Until then, have some more kitteh.
[UPDATE: I almost forgot! Yes, the new moon was seen, signaling the start of the month of Ramadan.]
Nineteen more bundles today. 19 bundles, and a new pair of running shoes. It’s true — I’ve become a woman. Who knew I would be so excited to get fabric and yarn in the mail, and a great new pair of shoes?
Anyway, the news of the day — besides the 19(!) boxes that arrived — was that I picked up some top cover for this project. In other-than-Army-speak, that means I informed my boss and he acknowledged that he now knows I am doing this. He also (jokingly?) acknowledged that I am just slightly off my rocker.
What are you trying to do, he asked, single-handedly defeat the insurgency in this province?
No, sir, I responded. Three provinces, and I have a lot of help.
Why did I have to let the cat out of the bag? This may well involve helicopters. No, there won’t be bundles thrown from low flying helicopters, but probably some flights to move stuff to others provinces here in the north. I can hide bundles in my room, but I can’t really hide a request for air support.
Before I go, I just wanted to acknowledge two special groups who are playing a key role in this project. The first are those of you out there who are translating this into other languages, and spreading the word that way. Here’s Norwegian (I love your blog, BTW), and here’s French (I love your blog, BTW) as two examples (and here and here for translated versions).
Lastly, I’d like to give a big shout out to all the IBOL Kittehs out there who are working overtime, inspecting all these boxes before they go into the mail. This entire thing would not be possible without your support. You are an all-too-often unsung hero, working out of sight, kneading bundles of fabric, layering them in cat fur for extra protection on the long trip here, and, I’m told, sometimes throwing up on them because, hey, you’re cats and that’s what cats do. So, here’s to you, IBOL Kittehs — thanks for doing what you do.
So, 26 bundles have arrived. Today brought the first YARBOL — yarn bundle of love.
And I have to ask — how does my stash compare to yours? I think this stash is AWESOME.
And I need to show you one more bundle. It’s the anti-bundle. It arrived….. naked.
Can you see those? The fabric is truly spectacular. Opening the box, my first thought was, Someone could part with this? I’ll grad something and bundle it up in the next couple of days – probably after I get to stare at it some more.
Oh, and before I forget — my room has that wonderful smell of fabric. Which is much nicer than its normal smell of running shoes. All I need now is a cat to sleep amongst the bundles, and all would be right in the world.
And relax — there’s plenty of time still. The mailing deadline isn’t until 07 September — weeks away! Go play in your stash, rummage around and bit.