A Gift from the Heart

Written by Nora Wallace on in LVMC News

CCC employee gives away handmade blankets to residents, coworkers.

Image

CCC employee gives away handmade blankets to residents, coworkers.

As with many people, when the global pandemic prompted stay-at-home orders, TrishFridrichthought to herself: What am I going to do?

The Comprehensive Care Center food service employee was facing much time at home after work and on weekends.

“Instead of sitting on the couch all night, I thought I’d do something,” she explained.

And that she did. During the long months of COVID-19 sheltering, Trish made more than 60 fleece blankets for friends, family, staff, and residents of the skilled nursing facility where she works.

The blanket-making effort actually began last Christmas, as she struggled to find an appropriate gift for her great-niece and nephew. She ultimately made blankets for them. So, when the March stay-at-home restrictions went into place, Trish had a creative outlet all ready.

She started looking at fabrics with printed and solid designs. Among the fabric she used was one design with a colorful array of nursing symbols, stethoscopes, and band-aids. She began by making about 15 blankets for the skilled nursing facility residents. It takes a bit more than an hour to make each one, she said.

Trish said she’s always been craft-oriented. In the past, she’s sewn hair ties and dog scarves. Heading to JoAnn’s Fabrics in Santa Maria is one of her favorite trips.

Because she begins work early in the morning, she has late afternoons and evenings full of free time.

“It gets me off the couch,” said Trish, who was born in Florida but has lived in Lompoc most of her life.“I turn my jazz on while I make them.”

Administrator Lorraine Jones helped Trish with a giveaway of more than a dozen blankets for the CCC employees during a recent CCC staff meeting. The names of every staff member were put into the mix, divided by departments. Jones let Trish reach into a baggie to draw each winning name. Because it was her day off, Trish knew the drawing was coming that afternoon and was even making blankets as late as the giveaway's morning.

“I wanted there to be more chances to win,” she said. Trish said she was “happy and proud” to see how much people enjoyed the prizes.“Look at the joy,” she said of people receiving the blankets. “That’s what makes me happy.”

Trish has worked at the CCC for 13 years.

“I love my job, my coworkers,” she explained. “It’s a fun place to work. (At other places) You hear people talk about not wanting to go to work. This is one job where it’s not like that.”

no photo available

Author: Nora Wallace, Public Relations

Nora Wallace was hired as LVMC’s Public Relations Coordinator in October 2014. She previously was employed as a newspaper reporter for 25 years at the Santa Barbara News-Press, primarily covering North County news. At LVMC, Nora is also responsible for the management of the Blue Coat hospital volunteers. She is a graduate of Santa Barbara City College and earned a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in journalism from San Francisco State University.

Other Articles Written by This Author