Shortly after Nancy Zieman’s passing, Rich Zieman felt compelled to share the rest of Nancy’s story with the sewing and quilting industry, people like you. This industry consists of a unique community of people who care deeply and respectfully for others. In The Rest of the Story, he shares her struggles and triumphs plus he includes anecdotes from family and friends. Included within this book is a DVD showing Nancy’s life and the vitality in which she lived and how we all should remember her. The Rest of the Story picks up where Nancy’s autobiography Seams Unlikely left off. If you’re a Nancy fan, you’ll thorough enjoy learning the rest of her story.
Many people were surprised by Nancy Zieman’s passing on November 14, 2017. Nancy appeared on television for 35 years looking polished, professional, warm and congenial. When in fact, many of those appearances were a façade. Some shows found Nancy enduring pain beyond a normal person’s tolerance. Her health struggles started at a very early age and she learned how to push through pain, not let discomfort block her from accomplishing goals and fulfilling responsibilities. She carried quite a burden.
But she did it in stride. Nancy didn’t let her health – or her appearance – define her. She found her callings and lived those callings every day. You see, Nancy had three callings. To us, her sewing family, her calling was teaching the world to sew. And she did an excellent job at that. She set the bar for other instructors on how to teach this craft. And she transformed hundreds of lives by sharing her joy and knowledge of sewing on national television. This is not an exaggeration because there have been literally hundreds of written tributes to the Zieman family on how Nancy changed their life.
A second calling was to her family. She juggled family responsibilities while leading Beaver Dam’s largest independent employer, Nancy’s Notions. She attended sporting events, musical performances, school meetings, birthday parties and more for her two sons. They ate dinner together every night, often with extended family. She led a ‘normal, busy home life’ while helping build the industry we so love today.
But her first calling, her faith in Jesus Christ, carried her through each day. She taught Sunday school for 30 years at Peace Lutheran Church. She had a lifelong commitment to her faith. The end of her journey was excruciating yet she found joy in having the time to meet with loved ones. To share feelings and thoughts that would have never surfaced if the end of her life wasn’t racing toward to the door. And she happily anticipated meeting Jesus – soon!
I am forever grateful for the impact Nancy Zieman had me. Her friendship, wisdom and faith have been a guiding light in my own life. In my sewing room, I have lots of reminders of Nancy. And you probably do, too. Like her 5-in-1 Sliding Guage measuring tool, countless books and patterns but what I treasure most of all is an incomplete landscape quilt. It’s small, in fact, it fit on her lap. You see, a lap design board was my last gift to her. And the day she received it, she went to work on this scene – a wooden fence strewn with bright sunflowers. Several hours later, she sent me a photo of the work in progress.
Unfortunately, when Rich Zieman sent me the design board after Nancy’s passing, the quilt top was still in the same design phase. Today, it sits on the back of my cutting table. The pins are still holding the cut flowers, the fence post and the low-lying brush. It is a work in progress and a reminder that our work on earth is never complete in our eyes. Only God knows when our work is done.
This week, we’ll pick a random winner from comments left below. Tell us what is your favorite Nancy Zieman tool, book or pattern. You can learn more about the Rest of the Story during The Rest of the Story blog tour. A complete list of blogs is available here.