A Featherweight with Weight

I posted this post about 2 years ago and ran across it in my archives.  It was such a neat story that I decided to re-share it today for those of you who may not have read it when I originally posted it.  I hope you enjoy the message.

Not a Featherweight but close to it.

Not a Featherweight but close to it.

Every once in a while I hear a story that just can not be forgotten. A story that needs to be written down and shared. Today is one of those days and I pray that I do it justice. It is a story about a family whose love and devotion to one another is evident even in death. I was honored to be able to hear this story and pass it on.
The Kline family have been friends of ours for so many years that I cannot imagine not knowing them. Our parents were friends and our moms had a friendship which lasted over 60 years until recently when Virginia slipped into the arms of her heavenly Father on the same day that my own father passed 18 years ago. This past week we all had the opportunity to see a few of the family and catch up and it was a wonderful time of sharing.
This was a family with a lot going on. With 6 children there was always something happening and add to the mix that it was a preacher’s family and that always added to the excitement. It is going to be difficult to limit my words today because I want to make sure that the background is set but let’s just say that this family saw its fair share of trials and tribulation.
Bob was a young father married to Ida Mae with 2 small little girls, Roberta and Rebecca. A tragic accident occurred in 1953 and Bob lost his Ida Mae and was faced with raising a 6 month old and a 2 year old on his own. Enter Virginia Mae. Yep, same middle name. They fell in love and married when the baby (Rebecca) was about 2 and went on to have 4 sons together. Their marriage was a strong one that saw 50 years before Bob’s death in 2004.
Throughout their lives Bob and Virginia always provided for their family and surrounded them with love and support and respect. They sought to live out their lives as the good Christians that they were and were always concerned with making sure that their children were safe and knew that they were loved. They wanted things to be fair and equal and I am sure with 6 children that was a struggle at times.
With the death of their mother the children gathered together to grieve, plan and share what needed to be done to handle the estate issues that always come with the death of a loved one. Virginia had fretted at times about making sure that things were fair. The one thing that caused her the most concern was a sewing machine. You see Virginia was an avid quilter. Her casket was draped in a quilt as quilting was what she loved to do. The machine that she went back to time and time again was a vintage Singer Featherweight machine. But even that machine had a story. It was a gift from Bob to Ida Mae, which was later, passed on to Virginia Mae because it was such a wonderful machine. She used that machine with love to sew clothes for her growing family and to work on the projects that she loved so much.
You can imagine that she was torn when she thought about who would get that machine after her death. She wanted to be fair. One of the girls should have it, after all, since it was originally the machine that their mother had been given. But how to choose? The oldest? The one who sewed the most? There seemed to be no answer.
As the family gathered to plan the service and take care of all of the things that need to be attended to during this time the son who was named the executor of the estate said that he thought he needed to take care of something. He disappeared and when he returned he had not one but two Singer Featherweight sewing machines in his hands. As the family looked on he explained that their mother had fretted over not being able to be fair about giving the original sewing machine to both of her daughters. She searched until she found one that was an exact replica of the original machine. But she did not stop there. She took the two machines to a sewing machine repairman and asked him to totally overhaul both of them. Take them apart and oil and put them back into perfect working order. As the machines were handed to Roberta and Rebecca they were also told that not only were the machines in perfect working order—-their mom had requested that all of their parts be mixed up so that both had parts of the original machine. The gift of a most generous mother touched my heart. I am sure it touched yours.
Thank you, Robie and Rebecca for allowing me to tell your wonderful story. God bless you.


  1. That is SUCH a sweet story. Not only did this mother fret about being fair to the two daughters (and went to extraordinary measures to be sure that she was), she had not even given birth to these girls… I was smiling at the end of your post. Thanks for sharing!

  2. What a loving story. I am glad you reshared!

  3. And therein lies a/the heart of wisdom!!!! Thank you for the share (again)!

  4. What an incredible story showing the depth of a mother’s love. Thank you for sharing this and please add this to your folder of “devotionals” for print publication.

  5. Missy's Crafty Mess says:

    Oh my goodness. That is the sweetest thing I have ever heard before.

    • Is that not the neatest story?? I love this family and I love that they shared this story with me. It was such an amazing gift, wasn’t it? Thanks for stopping by.

  6. Awesome story, Beth Ann. There’s nothing quite the love of a mother, is there? Especially one who went to such pain-staking effort to make sure her girls BOTH knew they were loved equally! Thanks for sharing.

  7. You told the story just beautifully which brought back many memories. Virginiawas a very special person and we became friends while in college at Ohio Northern University. She was my very best friend from then to her last days. She and Bob raised a family with much love.

  8. This story was sweet the first time I read it and it made me smile again. Such a wonderful gesture from what I gather was a wonderful woman. 🙂

  9. What a beautiful, touching story. Thanks for sharing it again!

  10. Beth Ann such a moving story. I am a bit teary. Virginia Mae did such a sweet thing with mixing the parts between the two machines. Such love.

  11. Great story, Beth Ann. Don’t remember it.

    Hugs from Ecuador,

  12. I had not read this…Very touching. What a thoughtful parting gift Virginia Mae left to each of her daughters. AND She stitched together a wonderful story that will be told for generations.

  13. What a beautiful story Beth Ann; what a wonderful gift that mother left for her two daughters. She was a very wise person to have the foresight to mix the parts up , ensuring both daughters would benefit. Thanks for re-posting.

  14. That was my cry for today. What a lovely story, one that should be repeated often.Thanks for sharing.

  15. I remember this one, and it still amazes me. The thought and the love that went into making her remembrance a gift that both of them could share without either feeling slighted was incredibly brilliant.

  16. Beautiful story, and wonderful share, Beth Ann. Thank you for this. Some things are worth repeating.

  17. This brought tears to my eyes as I read it because I love to sew and make quilts too. Not sure what I will do with all of sewing machines but I’m sure over time I will figure it out.

    • Aw—I know–it was a great story, wasn’t it? And especially to someone who loves to quilt like you do it made it even more personal. Hugs!

  18. What a beautiful story!

  19. I remember this, it was a wonderful story. Love the looks of those old machines. Classic.

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