SIDNEY – Confined to her home because of the coronavirus pandemic, Mary Jane Stratton is keeping busy with a new art project – decorating fly swatters.
“It’s a project to keep me home, which I have to do,” the 83-year-old Sidney resident said.
Under normal circumstances, Stratton would visit the Senior Center of Sidney-Shelby County twice a week and was a member of two card clubs. However, those outings have been suspended in efforts to slow the spread of the virus and protect her health.
Now to pass the time, Stratton decorates fly swatters with silk flowers, pearls and rhinestones.
“It gives me something to do and I enjoy doing,” said Stratton, whose love of flowers dates back to her time working at a flower shop as a teenager.
In her first week confined at home, Stratton completed 15 fly swatters that each feature a unique design.
“I just did one last night that I’m really, really happy with,” she said. “It’s America. It’s red, white and blue.”
A single project can take more than two hours to complete. And if she’s not satisfied with her work, she tears it apart and starts again.
A few of her completed designs have been gifted to friends.
“They thought they were very neat,” said Stratton, who still had three fly swatters left to decorate.
Stratton previously decorated her walker with artificial flowers and is considering ideas to redecorate it for her granddaughter’s wedding in August. Beyond that and her fly swatter project, she’s not sure how she’ll occupy her time while stuck at home.
“Give me time and I’ll think of something,” she said.
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