León, Nicaragua              October 19, 1998

The Brother sewing machine I sent down this year hasn’t had a lot of use because they had trouble reading the instructions.  They are not familiar with zig-zag machines.   We got the Brother out and Mirna learned to use it to hem the baby blankets she weaves.  Mirian tried to use it one day and spent most of the time trying to thread the needle.  I decided I should get acquainted with some of the features, since it has a needle threader I’ve never tried.  If one follows directions exactly, it works like a charm.  They all practiced using it, since only the two youngest can see well enough to thread the needle.  Then we made buttonholes, and was that ever a thrill to them.

Mirna brought some material and asked Mirian to help her make a skirt.  Mirian is a seamstress and it was interesting to watch her different approach as she cut out a skirt without a pattern from ½ yard of fabric (Mirna is a skinny little girl with a 23-inch waist and 28-inch hips).  She told Mirna what to do and soon Mirna was sewing a skirt, putting in the zipper and everything.  I showed her how to do a blind-stitch hem on the machine and everyone was awed when she did it, how fast and nicely it went.  God bless the new sewing machines!

The school that Lucia goes to (she’s the young weaver who lives with Danelia) is the Colegio John F. Kennedy.  How about that?  I probably wouldn’t have known except she was selling raffle tickets.  The school wants to raise money to buy athletic equipment.  I bought all ten of Lucia’s tickets; they cost one cordoba apiece.  That means I got ten tickets for one dollar.  I wonder how many they’ll have to sell to raise any money at that rate.  The prize is an electric fan.        


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