I had so looked forward to the holidays, and getting back on here to tell you all about it. Everything that I could control was fine - my children were all here, gifts were getting wrapped and we were enjoying each other's companay. But God has his own plan. On Christmas Eve we got the news that my sister had passed away. My heart goes out to her children, and I ask for your prayers for them as they learn to deal with this new reality.
We were under a winter storm advisory yesterday, so we weren't surprised to wake to snow. We only got about 2 inches, but since it rained all day yesterday, we knew there had to be a lot of ice out there as well. It's been a good day to stay inside and sew.
I finally have all my trees up, and I've found a place to put a new one. I even found a tree I liked at Crafts 2000, but it never has gone on sale, so I won't be having that one. I'll find one sometime. Anyway, this is my family room tree, all decorated in painted glass ornaments. I still have about 100 small ornaments to put on it. They always go inside the branches to kind of fill it up, but I may not do it this year.
This next tree is my grandson's favorite. I have been a Star Trekkie (not quite that bad) since the original show back in the 60s, and fell in love with Star Wars when the first one came out. I've been collecting the ornaments for quite a few years. The first one was a Star Trek shuttle craft with the voice of Mr. Spock giving a Christmas greeting. My children never did like either ST or SW, and always made fun of my "traditional" tree ornaments. When my grandson came along though, he fell in love with them and was surprised to find that his Grandma really liked watching the movies with him!
My last tree is a mini for the kitchen counter. I've had it for about 15 years, and have always used a cheapy little tree skirt. You know, the red fleecy stuff with a red and white edging. For all these years, when I put it up I thought that I really should make a skirt for it. Well, finally, I did! It was a little more work than I thought it would be, but it's done and I love it.
Also, the kitchen table looked so bare without a runner. I remembered that I had started one last year and hadn't finished it, but it took me awhile to find it. It was pieced, sandwiched and basted. When I started working on it, I remembered why I had given up last year. It just wasn't flat, and I remembered all the time I had spent trying to improved it. So I tried to quilt it into submission. It's ok, but not great. It still isn't very flat, but that's ok as well. I learned years ago that if I wanted something perfect, it couldn't be something that I made, because my work is far, far from perfect! But I keep trying, and hopefully improving.
I can't believe it's been more than 6 weeks since I last posted, but hopefully, I can get back on track. I've had almost endless computer problems. Thank goodness for my helpful son who fixed all the problems. It's working beautifully now, and the only thing I lost was my bookmarks. I guess if they're important enough to me, I'll find them again.
Along with not blogging, I have also not been sewing, so I don't have anything to show you today. I'm working on two Christmas tablerunners, so maybe I'll have one finished tomorrow. Oh, maybe not - tomorrow is card day. Anyway, soon...
What I have been doing this week, though, is decorating Christmas trees. I love trees and decorate five. I only have 3 of them done, and hope to do the fourth one tonight. I found a place to put another tree, but I haven't come up with a theme for it. I also don't have the tree yet, so I'll plan for it for next year, I guess. This is my traditional tree with all the ornaments I've bought, been given, or have made with the kids. I always really like it with all the memories it brings back as I decorate it. My grandson helped me this year and asked me about each ornament as he pulled it from its wrapping and hung it on the tree. It made me really think about each one and who exactly had given it to me.
This one decorates my entryway, and it's really pretty. I stumbled and almost fell down the stairs as I was decorating the top. Fortunately, I was able to really grab the railing and didn't go all the way down. My arm sure felt it the next day.
So did you think I'd fallen off the edge of the earth? I've been here,
spending 7 days cruising the Mexican Riviera on this wonderful ship. The cruise was wonderful, after the first 2 days, and until the day before we returned. We sailed from San Diego, which I understand is a sunny, southern California city. You couldn't prove it by me. It was cold, damp and dreary when we arrived on Friday, and even worse the next day when we boarded our ship. We sailed on Saturday (cold) and had 2 days at sea (cold) before arriving in Mazatlan. It was nice to finally get to some warmth. From then, everything was so nice until our last day at sea. Again, it was cold and the sea was rough. After breakfast I spotted flying fish and had a great time watching for them. I didn't realize until almost too late that I was getting seasick. (shouldn't watch the water when the seas are rough!) Fortunately, they keep plenty of seasick medicine onboard, and I was fine in no time.
Well, again it's taking me 2 weeks to get a posting done. I really need to do better at this.
In my last post I had a picture of a small quilt mat, or quiltlet as one commenter said. I love that word, by the way. Anyway, I've been married since 1971, and never, in all those years, has my husband voluntarily complimented anything I've made. So I don't think I even showed this one to him. I just put it on top of a display case in my entryway with some fall flowers and a couple of candles. A little later he came looking for me and said he liked it, and wanted me to make a similar one for the dining table! I was stunned! He especially liked the green fabric. If you remember in my last post, I used up every scrap of that green to finish that little quiltlet. I don't have to be forced to shop for fabric, so I went to my favorite online quilt shop (Whittles) where I bought it, and it was all gone! Fortunately, with the designer's name I could do a search and found it on another site. So here's what I finished today, and got another compliment!! ( Will wonders never cease?!)
I like the leaves turned rather than all lined up.
Last Thursday, I got to spend the day in Amish country with a good quilting friend. We had so much fun. We spent most of our time, and money, in the quilt shops, but we also enjoyed a bulk food store, a great little coffee shop, and a wonderful buffet lunch. I was very good, and bought only a little fabric, including the pretty red for the Maple Leaf blocks in the new table runner. I found some fat quarters for a dollar each, and spent a few dollars on some. I also found some good quilting needles. I know I have a lot of hand quilting ahead with the DJ, but I can't seem to force myself to get those last pieces done. Got any good ideas on how to get motivated?
I got all my goodies mailed out today, so now my sewing is all for me! I love the green fall fabric I used in the table runner, and decided to use the small leftover piece to make a little topper to put with my fall decorations. I don't put out many decorations for Halloween, but I love those for fall. Anyway, I can put this one out now and leave it until Thanksgiving weekend. The scraps I had left were so small that I didn't keep them. I like the fabric so much it really was hard to throw out those tiny scraps.
What I had to work with was so small that I had to piece the green border. But you know, my great aunt Sophie (from whom I inherited my love of quilts and quilting) pieced even the smallest blocks. She wouldn't have thrown out my scraps. So this little table topper is for me, in memory of Aunt Sophie, and I certainly don't mind pieced blocks.
You may remember that in August my husband and I went on a short cruise. While we were gone, of course, the blogs I follow just continued to pile up on my list. I finally decided that I couldn't read them all and quit trying. Well, guess what I missed? I won a giveaway! And didn't know it! Fortunately, 7thsister26 is a very patient person, and waited for me for a month before she said anything about it on her blog. I was so excited to get this wonderful package yesterday. I love all of these lovely Moda fabrics, and I can't wait to find a project to put them in. My birthday is just before Valentines Day so this is very special to me. Thank you so much 7thsister26!!
Note to my sister: If you'd like to read some other lovely quilting blogs while you're here, just click on any of those listed on the right - 'My Blog List'. They're all great. I'm so glad you're here!
I can't believe it's been so long since I last posted. I've been reading blogs everyday, but just haven't wanted to write one myself. I also haven't wanted to sew, but I've done a few things which I'll show you. I have only 11 more pieces to make to have all the pieces made for the Dear Jane. Then I have to start quilting it. Maybe that's what's keeping me from finishing - I'm not looking forward to handquilting this project. So we'll see if I get myself motivated to complete it.
What I have been sewing is a quilt for Quilt for Kids, but I'll wait to show it to you when it's complete. The other sewing I've done is my set of blocks for a 9 patch swap at juliekquilts. They're all set to go in the mail tomorrow.
Look at the goodies the mailman brought me this last week. This first one is from Di. She does beautiful embroidery, and the little snowman hanger is going to look great with the winter decorations. Thank you so much, Di. I'm really going to love using this sweet gift.
The next is from Pip in Australia. It's a beautiful little woolie pincushion, scissor case, and scissor fob that she made, with the fob on the cutest little pair of Scissoroos. The workmanship is wonderful and the mother-of-pearl buttons just really set it off. Then everything was cushioned inside these lovely pale pink and blue fabrics. I can't wait to find a project for them. These little scissors are a great size for embroidery and cross stitch, so they'll be used a lot. Thank you so much, Pip!
I realized today that the end of September is so close (can't believe it), and I don't have an OPAM finish for this month. Okay, so everything just worked for me today - I had these wonderful new fall fabrics, the OPAM deadline is approaching, and I don't have an autumn table runner. So my work for today was a no brainer. I finished this table runner, including the binding. I did minimal quilting, and may go back later and add more - we'll see. Anyway, it's on my table and I'm counting it as a finish.
Ok, I don't know how long it's been since I last posted, so I guess it's about time. Not much is going on here, but I'm still trying to get my DJ done. I know, I missed my (self-imposed) deadline, but when the cruise came up, I lost a week to it. Even though it was only a 3 day cruise, it took most of Monday to book it, Tuesday to get ready for it, Wednesday to fly to the port, Thursday through Sunday on the ship and returning home. Anyway, excuses aside, I missed my deadline.
I've finally made a corner kite,
and I'm still plugging along on the triangles. These are the latest.
This is the beautiful square I received in August from monthly block swap I'm in. It was from Lindy in Australia. I forgot to take a picture of the one I made for her, but I really liked it. Isn't this the prettiest pattern?
I'm also working on the 6 inch blocks for the 9 patch swap. I love the fabric and had hoped to use the scraps in one of my DJ triangles, but when I got started today, I realized that not only will I not have any scraps, but I don't have enough to complete my 78 blocks. At least I have time to order more before the deadline.
One other good thing this week, I won 2 giveaways! I don't often win, but 2 in one week is great. I'll show you when they come in. No, it's not a GO, but that's okay; these are from bloggers that I follow, so winning them means a lot to me.
Travelling alwys throws me off a bit, so that I don't rest well and don't want to do anything. So even though we've been home since Sunday, I haven't felt like doing anything until today. I did a little sewing and at least got an August finish for OPAM. I have worn out my toiletries travel bag, and decided I could make one myself. Well, it's made, but that's the best I can say for it. It will serve the purpose. I'm also back to triangles, but don't have any to show you because my camera's in the bedroom and I don't want to disturb my husband's sleep. Maybe tomorrow...
Sorry to disappear for a week. Last Monday my husband's nephew asked us if we wanted to go on a short cruise with him and family to the Bahamas. It seemed like a good idea so we spent Monday afternoon booking cruise tickets, plane tickets and a hotel room for the night in Orlando. That's one problem with living in a small town - we always have to go a day in advance to be sure to get there in time. It's okay, though, we're getting too old for all of that travel stress in one day. So anyway, we then spent Tuesday getting everything done - laundry, shopping, packing, etc. Wednesday, up and off the to Bahamas. Sounded like fun, but big mistake to go to the Caribbean in the summer. It was hotter than blazes!! The ship and food were passable - nothing special, but I know I won't go on that cruise line again. Anyway, not the greatest weekend, but I love being on a ship, and as long as I could stay in out of the heat, I was happy. I didn't take any pictures, so I don't have anything to show you of my latest trip. Oh well, we'll go somewhere again before too long and it will be better. (I hope!)
I didn't have much time for sewing today, but got this one triangle done. Since I've told you how much time one triangle can take to make, I timed it today. It took me one and a half hours to get to this point. Then with the help of this super ruler, we have this completed triangle.
I can't believe it's been a week since I posted! It's not that I'm lazy (well, maybe I am). I've been really busy with sewing. I'm getting so close to having all the pieces done for my DJ! I'm still hoping to have it done by the end of the month, but we'll see. I only have 15 more triangles to make, but each one takes soooooo long. A really difficult one can take all of my sewing time for the day!
The mailman brought me a nice surprise today. It's a gift from Sandi of Legacy of Stitches for giving the correct answer to a question on a post. Look how this package is wrapped.
Then when I opend it, there's another little package inside.
And so on until there were 5 beautiful pieces of red, white and blue fabric. Aren't they pretty? They would have been perfect in my Red White and Blue quilt, but those squares are all done, and languishing in a box while I try to finish my DJ. Thank you so much, Sandi! I've signed up for another swap. I know, I have more than enough projects underway, but these blocks are just 9 patches which aren't very complicated. The other deciding factor for me was that it was to be Civil War reproduction fabrics. Since I have so many from making the DJ, this seemed like a good way to use up some of it. So anyway, I have to make 50 3 inch squares and 78 6 inch squares. The 3 inch are done, and I hope to start the 6 inch this weekend. Lots to keep me busy!
I can't believe it's been so many days since I last posted. I thought I was back in the swing of doing routine posts, but I guess I have to work harder. Look what the mailman brought me today. Isn't it pretty? The Maple Leaf block I showed in my last post is for her, but I know she doesn't have it yet, because it's still siting on the table in my family room. Shame on me:(. I told you I was a terrible procrastinator. I love the 30s fabrics in this block, and it will work quite well with a project I'm planning.
As usual, I'm still triangling. I've made a few this week, and have several under construction. The part I can do on the machine is done, and now they need either hand sewing or applique. Hopefully, I'll make some real progress on them this evening. So, these are the latest.
All of my sewing time today consisted of making 1 triangle. I really like this one. It took me a little while to figure out how I could make it, but it really turned out pretty well. I know the picture makes it look all cockeyed, but trust me, it's really straight.
Yesterday I told you I had some red squares to give away, and had 3 comments about them. So I put the names in a hat and pulled Needledmom. I've notified her and will get them in the mail as soon as possible. (Remember what I said yesterday about procrastinating?)
Well, the sewing machine seems to be working today. Maybe I've just overworked it? No, I still think I have a problem, but for the moment, I can sew. I finished only 2 things today, a block for a swap I'm in, and yet another triangle.
Would you believe my one year 'blogiversary' slipped by this week without any notice from me? I had planned to have a nice giveaway, but I guess I'd better get it organized before I post it. In case you hadn't noticed, I'm one of the world's best procrastinators.
I've been spending some time trying to get my sewing room cleaned up and organized. I came across this nice little pile of red 4 inch squares. I don't remember why I was collecting them, but whatever it was, I'm no longer interested. So does anyone want them? If so, leave me a comment and I'll send them off to someone.
This was such a good day, and then such a very bad day. I finished up all the sewing I had committed to do for a friend, and was so looking forward to getting back to making triangles. I got one cut out, started putting the pieces together, and my sewing machine stopped sewing! It's breaking threads, making knots, and just generally locking up. The last time this happened, I had to take it in for a repair. I'm hoping I can figure it out and get back to work. So no pictures to show you today; just a very sad face :(.
As I told you in my last post, I had a lovely visit, not only with my sisters, but with a blogging friend, Pat. She brought me this gift,
a pattern for seasonal pillow covers and this cute little magnet. But of course, those of you who follow my blog know that I am very forgetful. My little gift for Pat was still in my sewing room at home. Oh well, thank goodness for the USPS.
And speaking of gifts, look what my sister gave me! She loves to make purses, and has given me several. I asked her to make me one from Christmas fabrics, and isn't it beautiful? I'm going to buy her some Christmas fabrics for her stash since she has used some of it on me.
And again, speaking of magnets, you probably also know that my husband and I love to travel. Since magnets are always available in touristy places, I always pick up one from each place that we visit. I don't usually buy any other travel souvenirs, because I really don't need (or want) them. So how do you display magnets? On the fridge, of course! I've always had refrigerator magnets for the kids' art and school projects, but now my refrigerator reminds me of beautiful places I've visited. I know, it's tacky, but I love it.
My only sewing activity so far has been to continue with my triangles. (the left one isn't really wonky - I just couldn't get it smoothed out for the picture) And I've signed up to make a block for a comfort quilt, and I've signed up for a new block swap. I see them on blogs and I just can't keep from putting my name in. At least I'll never run out of projects!!
It's good to be home again after several days away. We went first to the DC area for a wedding. It was an Indian wedding, and they're always fun. Although we weren't there in time for the wedding, we did get to go to the reception. There is always entertainment, usually a variety of dancing, both traditional and Bollywood. This time, however, I saw a dance I'd never seen before, and it was wonderful. All the women from the bride's family danced, following and surrounding one of the group who carried a basket of candles or lights on her head while she danced. The picture doesn't do it justice since they were moving so fast. It just made you want to get up and dance with them. It was very infectious, because soon there were so many people on the floor I couldn't see the dancers.
The rest of my time away was spent visiting my sisters who live on the Eastern Shore in Maryland and Delaware. I only get to see them about once a year, and I had a wonderful visit. Because of the heat, we mostly just stayed in and 'caught up'. That's always a favorite for me. My sisters are both really good cooks, so I know there will always be plenty of good food on the table for every meal. Besides the wonderful cooking, is there any better corn on the cob than Eastern Shore? I doubt it. While I was there I had the opportunity to meet one of my blogging friends, Pat. We met for lunch in Georgetown, Delaware in an old, genteel hotel restaurant. She brought along another quilting blogger, Kathy, (sorry I can't seem to get the link to work to her blog). For those of you were in Pat's Green and Cream No Sew Swap, she participated in that one so you have one of her blocks! It was such a pleasure to spend time with an online friend, and before I knew it, 2 hours had passed. This is a picture of the whole group, from left to right, Kathy, my sister Sarah, Pat, and me. The waiter, whose name I can't remember either, Pat, got a really big smile from all of us and so a really good picture.
This one was on the front porch of the hotel. We were leaving at this point and didn't linger in the heat for any other pictures. I hope I'll have the opportunity for another visit with Pat, and perhaps to meet other of my blogging friends.
My husband and I are going out of town for a few days, so I won't be posting for a few days. ( Of course, I haven't been very good about posting on a reguar basis anyway. ) For the past week I haven't gotten much quilty sewing done because I've been busy making clothes. I want to get back to my quilts!! This has made me remember why I don't like to make clothes. Hopefully I'll be able to keep up with blog reading and commenting, but if not, I'll see you soon!!
I've had a great time sewing this week. I'm really into 'triangling' and am anxious to get them done. It took about an hour to complete one, and then I decided to work on a corner kite. I haven't made any of them yet, so this was a new endeavor. The one I chose takes lot of reverse applique, and hopefully, I'll finish all of that tonight to show you tomorrow.
Monday was the day for the latest block pattern for the Jelly Roll Quilt Along. I was really happy with how mine turned out. Then on Tuesday found that there had been a mistake in the instructions so that they didn't match the sample posted. That's okay with me; I'll just make them both. I seldom make small quilts, and had already decided to make enough blocks to make a bed size quilt.
My daughter's home this weekend and wants me to do a little sewing for her, and until that's done I won't be working on any of my projects. I made a lot of clothes for her when she was a child, but haven't sewed for her for a long time. She has picked out a beautiful pattern and fabric, and if my skills are up to it, it will be a really pretty dress. We'll see...
My sewing room is in such disarray that I can hardly stand it. I have my projects all over the place, some sewing I'm doing for a friend, and now the sewing for my daughter. Scraps, pattern pieces, miscellaneous threads , etc., etc. So once I finish my daughter's dress, no more sewing until the room is in order. Even I can stand just so much!!
Do you think I'll ever get back in the habit of routine posts? So far, it seems not.
Anyway, I have been busy with lots of sewing projects - I just can't concentrate on one for long, it seems. A year ago, I was spending most of my sewing time on a Double Wedding Ring quilt that I had been planning for a long time. Then I got into some swaps that took a lot of my attention - Red and Aqua quilt, CW Siggie, apron, Holly Jolly blocks, and on and on. Don't get me wrong, I've loved each one of them, but they do take a lot of time and attention. During all of this I started a Dear Jane quilt, planning to have it as a very long term project. So now here's where I stand since last year; I've completed a quilt from swap blocks (Green and Cream), completed and sashed the Red and Aqua blocks, completed and sashed the blocks from the RWB swap, and the DJ quilt is getting very close to completion (the top, that is). And the DWR quilt that I was really working to complete? The blocks are in a box - I haven't touched it in months!
I started the DJ on August 29 last year, and I really want to have the top completed by that date this year. I think I can do it, if I try. The strips for the top are all put together, and I've completed 20 of the 52 triangles. I haven't tried any of the corner kites, yet, but since there are only 4 they shouldn't be a problem. Here's what I've accomplished since Thursday.
For this wonderful holiday weekend I visited the Mountain State Arts and Crafts Fair. The only money I spent was on food, but I saw some wonderful craftiness. My camera had a nice trip with me, but it didn't take any pictures! So, sorry, I can only tell you there were lots of pretty things to see.
I finally got around to setting out my patriotic tabletop display, and realized that I don't have anything that I've made that I can display with it. So yesterday I made this little basket pad to go with my other patriotic items. Our kids didn't come home this weekend, and our plans are simple for the evening - a visit with old friends. I hope that your plans for the 4th are just exactly what you want to do.
I helped a friend with some sewing today, so I didn't have much time to work on quilting. I did start putting the sashing on the RWB blocks, and hopefully will have the top together soon. I spent a good bit of time studying the pattern of the next triangle for my DJ quilt, and it has some hurdles, for me anyway. No pictures today...maybe tomorrow.
I can't believe it's been so long since I last posted! I prromise to do better. Even though I haven't been posting, I've been keeping up with reading. That's how I start and end each day! I love blogging - I've just been exceptionally bad at it.
I still don't have my RWB quilt top put together, but it's getting there. I love the way it looks, and I can't wait to have it complete. I've also started putting my DJ rows together. The rows aren't sewn together, but I wanted to get an idea how it will look. I bought the fabric for the sashing, and then wasn't sure I wanted to use it. I was really afraid that it just wouldn't work. I thought about it for days and finally decided to try it. Once I put two rows together and had them side by side, I really liked it. What do you think? That color isn't used anywhere else in the blocks, and I really think it just pulls all of it together, and emphasizes each one.
The color of the blue in this last one is the closest to the true color although everything else looks yellowish.
If you notice in the picture, one of the rows has wider sashing than the others. I had 3 done like that, then realized they weren't going to fit together with the side triangles. You know, I think I have a hex on me that makes me do things wrong at least twice before I get it right. I took the first row apart, trimmed the sashing, then put it back together. I did the second one, and realized after putting it together that the blocks were in the wrong order! Took it apart again and put them in the right order, then noticed that the first block was also in the wrong order!! What a pain! But if they're in the wrong order now, they're staying that way! But anyway, I still have to fix that one row, and hopefully, this time, I'll get it right the first time, or rather the second time (which it will be!). So I'm working hard on my triangles and like the way they look. I'm studying one that looks a little complicated, but I think I'm ready to put it together tomorrow. If so, I'll show you soon.
If I'm good, maybe I'll get a post finished today, Thursday. I'll interrupt my typing to go for a walk, but I promise I'll come back and finish. I must get out and get some exercise. I've become way too sedentary, and unfortunately, my favorite 'activity', quilting, doesn't get me moving at all. I've often thought how nice it would be to have one of those nifty sewing centers where I could cut, sew and iron without getting up. In reality, I think my setup is better for me. I do my cutting on a dresser, which is very stable and just the right height for me, my sewing is on a 6 foot table, and the ironing on a small ironing board in the bathroom! I know, the bathroom? Well, the door is right behind my sewing chair, and the small portable ironing board has to be on a counter. The bathroom's large with a long counter and an electrical outlet right there. (and since it's between 2 seldom used bedrooms, I don't often have to take it down) This keeps me getting up and down a good bit. But that's still very little activity, so I'm off for a walk.
For various reasons, I didn't have much time to sew today, so no progress on any of the projects I currently have under construction. However, since I need a pincushion (that I'm not ashamed for anyone to see), I made a one this afternoon. I just wanted a little one to put by my chair where I work on hand sewing. So what do you think?
BTW, if you haven't voted yet for one of the 5 in Barb's giveaway of a GO! Cutter, don't forget to go and vote and please consider voting for SewMeow.
Spring Wall Hanging; Little Dresses for Africa - April
Green and Cream quilt - May
2 Pincushions - June
Basket runner, dress - July
Travel Bag - August
2 Fall table runners - September
Fall Table Runner - October
Welcome to my blog. As you can see from my WIP list, my interests are varied, but unfortunately, keep me sitting still to complete them. I am retired, and enjoying all the freedom it brings. My hubby and I enjoy travel, especially cruises, and you can count on seeing pictures of our travels here on occasion. So, I hope you enjoy what I put here, as much as I enjoy my visits to your blog.