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Susan Hudson

Trophy Gardens Quilter Finds Joy in Acts of Service

by Rocio Villalobos

Susan Hudson’s favorite activities are quilting and bringing joy to others. The Winter South Texan from North Texas heads one of Trophy Gardens Resort’s quilting group, Busy Bees, which gives back to the community through their creations.

A few years ago, the park received a long-arm quilting machine, which they have been using for a new project.

“We decided to start honoring our veterans, so we make what we call ‘quillows,’” Hudson said. “In February every year, we have a dinner where we honor our vets, and the goal is for every veteran in the park to have a quillow. We’ve given out 140 or more so far.”

Other endeavors by the group include making blankets for hospitals’ neonatal units and helping neighbors with garment repairs.

“We’re trying to raise money to build a new quilting facility room, so we put on events, such as dinners, raffles, and 50-50s,” she said. “We’re busy every day.”

One upside to the pandemic, Hudson said, is it has taken people back to basics.

“More people are buying bicycles and riding; bridge players are out playing on someone’s deck,” she said. “There are all kinds of things going on. Some of the girls are sewing in their houses.”

In any situation, Hudson can find the positive. A year ago, both she and her husband were diagnosed with cancer, her husband’s discovered shortly after her surgery.

“A week later, we were out bike riding and a dog came outm and he fell off his bike and broke five ribs,” she said. “We found out he had kidney cancer, so after my treatment, we were sent to Dallas to have his kidney removed. There’s always something worse. You may think you’re going through a bad timem but it can be worse, so just keep a smile on your face and keep going.”

They have both since overcome their diagnoses and never take a day of their lives for granted, leading them to spread as much cheer around as possible. Whenever the park has a party and it hits that lull, they step in.

“We turn on the hokey pokey and are getting everyone to get up to do the hokey pokey or chicken dance or something,” Hudson said. “That’s our job, to get everyone going and people laughing, and we have such a good time.”

They are also known to plan surprises, especially the seasonal kind.

“In the past, I had made elf costumes, and we would go caroling at home and take pictures of the kids, so I brought the costumes down here,” she said. “We show up at the park meetings and do stuff. We’ve since added two reindeer, a snowman, Christmas tree, and Santa.”

Another recent surprise targeted the park’s singles.

“For Valentine’s Day, my husband and a neighbor dressed up as Cupid and went around to the single ladies in the park and gave them a rose,” she said. “The little ladies really enjoyed that. You never know what we’re going to do next.”

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