My Name is Sarah

MY NAME IS SARAH. I am a quilt designer and the sewcial director of Sarah's Sewcial Lounge. I also have a business called Down Right Charming. I sell my quilts mostly on etsy and I make pillowcases to donate to patients in the hospital in memory of my friend Kristen Kirton. I am a young adult living with Down syndrome. I hope you enjoy reading about my journey.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014


Wow! My life is busy, busy, busy.

I started back at the new location for our quilt shop. We had to move next door to our old store.

It is good to get back at the sewing machine.

I am very happy when I am sewing.

I like our new set up. I can sew and then turn around and be at the cutting counter.

I am very good with the pins now.

Well what do you think? Do you like my new Dr. Dre Beats? What? Oh you don't know what those are. They are my headphones. 

It was time for the end of the year Music Therapy Share Day. I sang a song by Aerosmith.

Everyone said I did a good job. I like being up on stage. But I have to be careful getting down.

Here I am with my friend Christina and Miss Bonnie, the best music therapist ever!!

My favorite part after the show...dinner at Bob Evans. And this year my Grandma came too!!! It was so much fun. My new sister Julie is with us too. 

Here I am with my little brother. Look how tall he is. He took me over to my grandparent's house.

Sometimes I do not see my mom for two nights because I stay at my grandparent's in my new bedroom. So when I see her she says she misses me.

Just us being silly. Can you believe we still dress alike even though we get dressed at different houses.

I had to write a note in the car. My mom said she had an idea.

She gave me an empty fabric bolt from the trunk to use as a desk. Good idea mom.

Good morning! I'm checking out all the new pictures on facebook.

Oh look a box for me. It says..."The moment you've been waiting for." I hope so.

Six dresses from Modcloth.

This one fits.  Look out. I am going to sneeze.

Bummer. I like this one but it is too tight.

Shhhh. I am suppose to be sewing but I am listening to music in my comfy chair instead.

Back to work. I love when I am busy and productive.

Look who is here. It's my sister-in-law. Julie!!

We are celebrating Father's Day. Everybody came over!!

Look at us. It's the first time we have eaten in our new dining room. This is the table we had in Columbus but now it is our permanent table in Cleveland. Oh one more is Julie and TJ's first wedding anniversary. Shhh...don't tell them but I am making them an album that has copies of all the quilt blocks from their wedding quilt. That way they can always look at them. I even copied all the notes people sent me.

OMG!! I can't believe my grandpa just put this chair in his trunk and we are driving off with it like this. Good thing his house is just down the street.

I have been busy finishing up some quilts. This one is already sold.

This one is sold too.

Scary Storm!!! Do you see those wires down and the tree branches by my mom's car. I was so scared. But everyone was ok.

Back to sewing. I have to get ready for the National Down Syndrome Convention. We are going.

And I am going to have my own exhibitor table.

Back to sewing today. I am really getting good at making quilts.

One more ready to go to the quilter.

And another one. 

I am really proud of myself.

Today I have to do some labeling.

I like this task. My dad says I am really good at it.

Do you see this new Charm Pack? It's a cute one. This is what I use to make my quilts and why I call my company Down Right Charming.

Wowzers! Look at this big blue bus that came all the way from western Michigan to visit our shop. That is pretty cool. It is full of quilters.

Meet my new friend Verna. She was so excited to meet me because she has a granddaughter with Down syndrome who also has a trach. She is ten. She told me I am their inspiration and she hopes they one day get to celebrate her 25th birthday like I am going to do soon. Grandma's are the best!

And speaking of Grandma's here is mine. Grandma Hillick came to the store today to help out. We are three women who all have the middle name Ellen. Did you know that? Elizabeth Ellen, Joyce Ellen and Sarah Ellen. That's me!!

Well it's time for me and Grandma to go home. And we have a surprise. My little brother came to be our chauffeur in his brand new car. How lucky are we?

Ok buckle up Grandma. I'm getting in the back seat.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

The NDSC Convention

Hi everybody. I am so excited. We are heading to the National Down Syndrome Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana. I thought it would be fun to do a post as we go. So keep checking back because I will be adding pics here all week.

My mom and I have been working on the set up for our display in the spare room at the store for a few days.  We think we have everything we need. Then my mom takes a picture so we can recreate it when we get to Indy.

Then we get it all packed into these green bags.

Next my little brother brought his car over and we packed it up.  Do you see my sewing machines?

We were a little worried whether our grid frames would fit, but they slid into his back seat perfectly. Then we packed lots of quilts in front of them so they would not fall over.

We are just about ready to go. We are leaving at 9:00 at night so we don't have too much traffic.  How do you like our haircuts? I said, "Marci, cut it all short. I need a new do. With bangs please." 

It is so late. It is like 4:30 in the morning.  But I have not even been to sleep yet. My mom thought I would sleep in the car, but I was too excited. Time for a breathing treatment before bed.

Good morning. "This is beautiful."  The view from my room on the 12th floor.

"Mom, look a theater over there." I love this view.

LOL! Breakfast just like at home. Mott's apple juice and chocolate chip cookies. I am just a little bummed. They do not have the Disney Channel at this hotel. My mom said it is because the Springhill Suites is more of a business hotel. Well my dad is a business man and he watches the Disney Channel. My Grandpa too.

It is a warm sunny day. So we went outside. This is our hotel.

Some man stopped and told me I was as beautiful as the sunshine. I think that is because I am wearing yellow.

Look who is here! It's Jessica. She is going to take me for a walk while my mom and brother load all the stuff into the exhibit hall.

Oh no. This is going to be a lot of work.

Nope not really. It went together really quick.

I had to stop for a minute and think of my friend Kriston. She can't be here because she is in heaven, but I know she is watching out for me.

We even had a name tag made for her mom Polly, because she is always encouraging us.

Matt and Jessie went out and got us lunch. I had a burger from Steak and Shake and my mom had her favorite from Noodles & Co.

My mom told me I have to drink lots of water so I do not get dehydrated.

We found another window. With more views of downtown Indianapolis. 

And I am at my table. The show is about to start.

That means I better get sewing.

Yep, here come the people.

There are a lot of guys here who want to talk to me. They keep coming back to my table.

Look behind me. Matt is ironing pillowcases and some man just took his picture because he never saw a guy ironing before. Are you kidding me? 

Just me and my mom sewing. We are happy.

There are a lot of faces here like mine. They are watching me sew.

Can you believe this. My silly brother did not want to carry this box because it is heavy so he rode in my chair.

I met a new friend today. She makes glass jewelry. We decided we have the same face. So we are hanging out together.

We went over to learn this new exercise program.

It was pretty fun. But man. Now I can't breathe.

Back to signing autographs I go.

That's a wrap on day one in Indy. I really like it here.

Good morning. It is day two. How do you like my name tag?

I got right to sewing as soon as we arrived. I have alot to do today.

I am even making a pillowcase.

Oh this is so cool. Meet Jake. He has a girlfriend back home. That's her picture on his cellphone. He bought one of my pillowcases to take back to her as a gift. He said she will love the colors. How fun is that!

Sewing is such hard work. It is time for my snack. I love spreading the cheese on these crackers.

Yum! That is pretty good.

I love Mott's Apple Juice. I could be a commercial for them.

Back to work I go.

Oh I am meeting lots of fun people. This is Karina Aguon and Angie Hook. I made a quilt for Angie's daughter Evan when she come home to be with her forever family.  They live in Tennessee.

Now this was really exciting. I spotted Hannah Wackernagle. She lives near Columbus. But she is a star. A Big Time Hollywood Star.  She wanted to go to prom with James Maslow. But he was filming Dancing with the Stars, so he could not leave. So he flew Hannah and her mom and sister out to California and she got to dance with him. OMG!!!

Here we are. Hollywood Hannah and me.

And here are our moms together. Joyce and Hollie. I took this picture.

After a little while I went for a stroll. This is a table across from mine. It is about a book called: 47 Strings. It is about Tessa. She has Down syndrome like me. They had bracelets and she gave me one.

I love it!

47 Strings. Check it out at your nearest bookstore.

Matt and Jessica came to watch the booth so my mom and I could go eat lunch. First we walked over this bridge. Downtown Indianapolis is really awesome.  Then we decided to go to Friday's to eat.  As soon as we walked in I heard, "Sarah!! There's Sarah!"

It was a friend from California who has been reading my blog since her little girl was born. She and my mom are Facebook friends too.

My mom was so happy to finally meet Denise. 

And they were with another group of friends. This is Ella. She used to live in an orphanage until her forever family went to get her. She loved me.

And I loved her too.

We had a good time together.

And this is Ella. She is a squirmy wormy.

And she is so lovable too!!

Do they look like twins? Yes because they are dressed alike. But they aren't really twins. They don't even live with the same family.

Denise was showing me pictures on her phone but Ella wanted to go play.

It was about time for us to leave. We said see ya later.

After lunch my mom took me back to the hotel for a breathing treatment. She was just a little worried about me.

Then we went back to the exhibit hall. I walked around with Matt and Jessica for a while.

Then I got back to sewing until a new friend came over to see me.

This is Tess Fuller. We are the same age. She lives in Indiana. We talked for awhile. Then my mom went over to another table to talk to someone else. And that's when things started going downhill. All of a sudden I could not breath. So the nice lady at the table next to us ran and got my mom.

She quickly put me in my chair to take me up to the room. She asked people to please not call 911 even though they wanted to.  She started to give me all my medicines.

But then I got worse.

And then I got scared because I could not breath. But my mom took care of me. And she called my little brother and he came too and helped me. 

Finally I was breathing better but I was burning up with fever. But my fingers and toes were freezing. 

After an hour or so, my mom went back down to our booth. Matt and Jessica stayed with me in the room. I wanted to talk to TJ too, so I sent him a ring on facetime.  My mom and brother worked really hard to get everything packed up so we could head for home.

Bye Indianapolis. I had a great time.

Look how cute this ball field is. The Columbus Clippers are in town so Matt and Jessie are going to stay another night to catch a game.

My mom is the best. She had us home in exactly six hours. We stopped twice at McDonald's. She knows just the ones that are open 24 hours. We pulled into our driveway at 3:59 a.m. Perfect. Now I am going to sleep in my own bed


Sometimes people ask my mom how she can stay so calm when I am in a breathing crisis. She tells them it is because we have been through it so many times and that she has learned there is often a reason for it. Sometimes we know right away what it is, and sometimes we never know. This time she said it was pretty clear.

A really bad accident happened on I-70 East in Richmond, Indiana on Sunday near the Ohio border. A guy died and several people were hurt on the Greyhound bus that he hit. It closed the freeway for hours just when we would have been traveling on the same road in the same direction. We would have been trapped in the hot car which would have been really scary for me and my breathing.

My mom said she felt really bad for the people on the bus, even the guy who died even though he was driving a stolen car, but she was very relieved that we traveled at night when it was peaceful for me. She calls that faith. Believing that God is watching out for us.