I’ve been taking pilates classes for almost 5 years (and I still have a hard time holding a good plank for more than about 30 seconds!), and the past 3-and-a-half years those classes have been at my local YMCA with the same two instructors, Sandy and Pennie. These ladies are fantastic instructors, and I know they teach these classes out of the goodness of their hearts as well as out of their enthusiasm for pilates.

So for awhile now, I’ve wanted to give them a small token of my appreciation, but I really had no good ideas for a gift. I thought of gift certificates to iTunes or a music store so they could buy more music for their classes. I thought of gift cards to bookstores. But I realized, outside of the pilates classroom, I really didn’t know these ladies well enough to go with those gifts (who knows, maybe they aren’t readers! perish the thought…).

But one class time, as I was grunting through yet another set of pilates “hundreds” I heard Pennie jokingly call out her trademark “No crying! No tears!” and I suddenly had an idea. Both she and Sandy each has a favorite phrase, and I would make them each a very cute, friendly quilted sign with their phrase on it! Sandy’s said “No Whining” (we’re allowed to cry if we want), and here’s Pennie’s:

nocrying.jpgThey really liked them and hung them off the edge of a table at the front of the class. The signs really are pretty funny, showing off their bossy sentiments in the middle of such bright, cheerful, friendly colors and flowers. It still makes me giggle when I see them.

Now it occurs to me that I could make some cool placemats like this (this sign is too small for a placemat) with phrases such as “Clean your plate!” and “Yum! Yum!” on them for my Etsy shop. I still need to discover the secret of getting good photos of these though. They never look truly squared with straight edges in my photos. Weird.