Saturday, October 30, 2010

Progress is progress, right?

Ok, so I'm up to a total of 11 string blocks done... but I only got ONE more box packed. :) I don't have any newspaper-- forgot to grab that while at Mom's earlier-- so I'm unable to pack anything breakable right now...
But look how pretty the blocks are! Here are six of them...

I love how they are slightly wonky. They will finish at 9" and right now I have the 11 done, with 6 more nearly done. That's 17 (I started the last one as a leader/ender). So, the decision will be if I should make 3 more for a total of 20, or more? or leave it at 16 and have one to throw in the "parts department?" We'll see... depends on how much more procrastinating I do!

Oh, boxes, why can't you pack yourselves?


How to have a Happy Halloween in a not-so-friendly neighborhood:

1. Lock the gate. Most of the trick-or-treaters that we saw last year ignored our sign that said we weren't giving out candy and would come in the yard any way, and then leave the gate open. Can't take chances when we have a dog, so we lock our gate.

2. Fix myself a nice supper for one: Tonight it's a steamed artichoke with garlic-lemon butter, and bread with brie.

3. Procrastinate packing some more by sewing! :) I made myself a promise that I would pack at least 3 boxes before today's over...

That's what I have in store for the rest of today. I would love to be able to hand out candy, but the "kids" we saw last year were over 6 feet tall and sounded older than the Brawny man. I wish we lived in one of those places that has made it illegal to trick-or-treat past age 12 since it seems no parents enforce that anymore!!!

Next year, we'll be in a safer neighborhood, so hopefully I can put candy out and not be afraid.

Friday, October 29, 2010

The Zen of Quilting

I only stitched a few more seams, but the zen-like tranquility has fallen again. Part of it was from reading Michele of With Heart and Hands... She's on the sidebar, go check her out. (Blogger links, why must you act up tonight?)
The other explanation is just that I got enough sewing done to have found my not-quite-happy-but-not-sad-anymore place. It's like my sewing machine's hum is really a manta: Ommmmmm.............. and then my iron breathes steam and says, "Hammmmmsaaaaaaaa"
And then I feel at peace. The more pieces, the more peace I have.


(PS... the giveaway will be posted in November... thanks to everyone for helping me reach the goal early!!!)

Trying for mindless

Caution: Debbie Downer post. You've been warned...

Some days, I want mindless sewing. You would have thought that would have been yesterday-- it was, after all, the one year anniversary of my dad's passing. But yesterday was ok (minus exploding TVs), and I made lasagna. Nothing bad can overcome lasagna!

Today, though, I NEED to be mindless. I was on the way home from the grocery- a trip that is less than 1.5 miles-- when I heard that horrible screech of tires that only ends with impact. When I located the sound, I saw one of the worst sights in my life-- a man had been hit one a bicycle and was lying in front of a red truck, motionless. I haven't been able to get the sound of the tires or the image of the guy lying there out of my head.

I've been trying to mindlessly sew. I made these... none are trimmed yet, most aren't ready to be trimmed, but they kept me busy for a couple hours. They look really pretty when I lay them all out... so colorful. But I still can't shake this awful feeling.

 It will pass. It always does. I'm too sensitive to these things... I heard a dog crying during the summer when Tim and I walked to get Chinese food one night, and then was unable to finish my dinner. Frankly, the latest terrorist news about those bombs doesn't bother me as much as that guy... I just want to know if he lived.

I need some chocolate... good thing I always keep a stash hidden under the counter.

Bad night for electronics


 The TV blew up... literally!!! it tried to take Tim with it! He leaned up against it when he was going to hook up the new DVD player (he broke my old one and felt so badly, poor guy) and the thing shocked him and died.


But, alas, the shock went through the surge protector (Silly me, I thought they prevented that) and took out our antennae too. The new dvd player is the only thing to survive besides my husband.

He's off to work already, whcich means time for me to kick it back into gear. I have my Viking back, so I can sew, sew, sew.

Sew, what? That is today's question!!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Ok, to all of you who are also members of the Lib-Quilter groups-- my dear, sweet Timothy just came in here to see why I was laughing so hard, and his reply is thus:

"I don't have a death wish. At least I didn't ask to wrap my guns and knives with them!"

He knows the value of the quilts, ladies, never fear!

Also, for some reason my Mail or Blogger, one of them anyway, is not connecting to the other, so I am unable to reply individually to comments right now... Hate doing this, but blanket Thanks to all of you!!!

28! Oh My!

I'm blushing! 28 followers when I checked right before writing this!! Many thanks! Big quilty hugs! And now, today's news and entertainment...
In the Stashbusters group, there's a No Buy challenge... if they ever did that with men and electronics, the above photo is proof that my husband would FAIL.

Ok, so I can't blame him entirely... we had agreed that when we move, we would get another tv so that the battle for tv control would end. But, today he decided to come along while I went to the LQS to pick my machine up from servicing and get my wedding ring re-plated with rhodium again. One small detour into Target to get How to Train Your Dragon, and suddenly we had a new TV!!! I'm not complaining-- Here I sit in our bedroom, watching/listening to Jeopardy while he's happily shooting away on the PS3 playing Time Crisis and voila, no argument over what to watch tonight!

To be fair, it was a really good deal on the TV, too... and even though a 40" seems excessive, it was cheaper than the 32" ones! And the sound is awesome, as is the picture.... :D

As we were driving home, Tim asked a question and got more laughter than he anticipated: "Can we use your quilts to wrap the other tv when we move?" HAHAHA!!! What he doesn't realize is that I will acquiesce to that request, but only certain quilts!!!

What would have been a 2 hour trip had a gone alone this morning ended up being 4 hours, so I didn't get anything done at home before I had to leave for Mom's to make lasagna for her. She says mine tastes better, but I think it only tastes better to her because she doesn't have to make it.

I don't think I'm going to get any time in front of any of my machines tonight, but that's ok. If all goes to plan, in about 3 weeks we'll be in the new house. Even if Tim gets his dog, I should be able to sew more often/steadily (he wants a Presa Canario, which is basically a monster dog but allegedly loving as all get out... so Prudence if she weighed three times as much!). And if it's true that I can get school paid for again next spring, I've been told I can continue to be a homemaker/student and not get a job... it's not that I don't want to work, but rather that I don't want another filer job that will do more harm than good like my last job. In other words, (dreaming here, perhaps) I WANT TO MAKE MONEY SEWING!  I wouldn't mind if writing were still a part of it, too.... The poet quilter....

There, I've said it. Laugh at my foolish dream, but if it's feasible, I will make a career that in some way/shape/form involves fabric and sewing. You just wait!

And with that, it's time to veg.

The giveaway will be on since the goal has been surpassed! Stay tuned... November is approaching!

Before I go, I feel I need to make a list of what I'm working on... call it a preview of things to come, or a way to hold me accountable:
WIPs- T-shirt quilt for benny and Cat quilt for Val, and Jen's coffee sleeves
Runner for grandparents (might be able to justify a trip to Lolly's!)
Finish hand quilting snowflakes! it's been almost a year!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Quilt finished? CHECK! News on the house? CHECK!

Fly Away Home
 I said I was going to finish this... AND I DID!!!

I had it all nice and smooth on the floor at my Mom's to take this picture, but Prudence and Fergie were running back and forth-- Prudence knows to stay off my quilts, but Ferguson thinks they're for her. So  this is immediately after shooing her off.

I ended up piecing the back from My Stash. I love the way it came out! And the best part? By putting the blue stars and the light blue batik in the back of my personal quilt, I GET TO KEEP THEM! The other two pieces finished those colors, too, so this quilt feels like a major accomplishment. It was also finished using my Fashion Mate 237, so that old machine got its first real workout, and passed with flying colors.

I decided on the name for it when I was about 2/3 done with the quilting.... Tim called, and told me that he had just spoken to our realtor and everything is back on track for us to get the house!!! Because of the slight side track last week, we won't close now until November, but I'm ok with that-- we're getting the house! So a BIG THANK YOU and HUGS GALORE to all of you who were sending positive thoughts and prayers our way!!!

That's why it's called "Fly Away Home." Flying geese + our first Home.

The other thing about this quilt that I'm so proud of is that I machine stitched the binding!!! I always put it on halfway by machine, but usually hand stitch it down the rest of the way... I've been a little intimidated to do it completely on my machine. But, since Clinton the Fashion Mate has a walking foot that works like a dream, I figured, Why Not? And it came out pretty darn good, I must say! And dang, it's a LOT faster! I think with practice and patience I could make it look really nice.

Because I'm in such an amazing mood right now, I'll reveal the third fat quarter for my planned giveaway...

Do you want a chance to win this? Then start following so you don't miss it! My birthday is coming up fast!

Piece out!

Rudely awakened!

It was 6:50 a.m.... if you heard a small branch land in your gutters, you'd bolt out of bed, too! I got up to investigate, took Prudence outside as my muscle, and found a small branch- about the thickness of my thumb and 3 feet long- in the gutters. And then I barely made it inside because it is SOOOOO WINDY!!!!!

So, now that I'm up, I might as well get busy. There's a tornado watch (rare this time of year! But it explains why it's creepy-warm outside... anyone who lives in the midwest will know what I mean by creepy-warm) so I think I'll get my shower done before any storms come. Then, I'm going to try to quilt the flying geese, assuming the storms don't prevent it. And if I get it done, I'll go to sewing club tonight, and spend my $10 reward I earned from the LQS. :D

If there's progress to report, I'll show you later!!!
Have a great day, everyone!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Busy, busy, but not much "done"

Tim officially starts his job today-- which means, he left for work a couple hours ago to do the same thing he's been doing since mid-July but now he's on official orders for a four-year contract. Hopefully we will get word about the house one way or the other soon... and then I'll get to move and we'll actually be living together again!!! This whole 2 night a week thing is getting old!

While he was home over the weekend, we had a "date night" Saturday. We saw the movie Red, then went to Texas Roadhouse. Then Sunday I made him endure that pitiful Bears game. I highly recommend Red to anyone who wants a fun movie, though... but I love humorous action movies.

I just got back from a run-- second one this month. I'm being good and waiting 2 weeks in between in an attempt to not aggravate the bone bruise, but at the same time I need to run a little so that I can actually participate in the Turkey Stampede on Thanksgiving with all the family. I took Prudence with me... she sat in the car while I ran my mile (8:57! not bad) and then I walked her another half mile so she got her exercise, too... and now she's conked out on the floor.

I finally got 2 more of these done! From that Quiltmaker issue I had such difficulty finding. I had made one shortly after I brought it home, and then yesterday while Tim played the latest Fallout game, I made 2 more while dinner was in the oven. We also got a couple more boxes packed, since moving is inevitable. I really hope we hear about the house today, and hopefully that we will actually get it!!!!

Snack time. I earned it. And then maybe also a nap before class.

I'll leave you with fat quarter #2 for the planned giveaway... Still hoping to get a better number of followers (original goal was 26).

See a theme yet?

Friday, October 22, 2010


My Model 27! He seems to be in working order except for the belt... which I've been trying to replace, except I lack a tool to punch a hole in the new belt.... methinks improvisation is in order... maybe tomorrow, though, since it's getting late.
Isn't it a beauty? I can't wait to have it working! If I have my way, that will be tomorrow morning, right after coffee!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Everyone warned me about glitches...

(Skip the first paragraph if you are allergic to life)

There's been another glitch with the potential house: The bank appraiser is NOT happy with the price, so our realtor is trying to work out something... I'm not entirely sure what's going on since Tim deals with all this stuff, i just know as it stands right now, the bank won't ok anything. SAD PANDA!!!! The upside (I had to find one before I would let Tim hang up) is that the only way we'll get the house now is if the seller lowers the price to something acceptable to the bank, which would mean we would pay less. I'm not holding my breath (but I am praying really hard). I hate being disappointed like this... let's hope that it turns into a better situation... I don't want to end up in another rental or an apartment, but at this point, we don't have time to house hunt-- Tim starts work MONDAY. :/  Worst case scenario, we'd at least be back under the same roof. You know, like a real married couple, not this odd 2 night/week thing that's been going on.

And now back to quilty things... a much happier topic!!!

 The borders are on! Now, I have to figure out how to quilt it... I'm stumped right now. I''m sure an idea will come to me... or the feed dog cover I ordered will come and then I'll play with FMQ some more and THEN get an idea!

Another happy tidbit: We're picking up the treadle tomorrow!!! I've already named it (you know what they say about naming a puppy... I think it applies to sewing machines, too). I'll tell you tomorrow evening.

And, I promised this earlier...
Item #1 in the giveaway.... a fat quarter from one of the local quilt shops!
Like it? FOLLOW for a chance... I'm going to reveal more as it approaches, so stay tuned.
26 Followers is the goal... let's see if we can  reach that goal!

Better start

My favorite current actor is on Regis & Kelly-- Jim Parsons! Aka Sheldon on the Big Bang Theory.  It's making for a good start to my day, especially combined with waking up feeling 80% better than I did yesterday. I think the remaining 20% is just allergies, though.

Just an FYI, Tim calls me Sheldon every once in a while. Mostly because of the whole "You're in my spot" thing. He would laugh at the unease he could create by sitting in my spot BEFORE I introduced him to the show... and now he really gets a good kick out of it. He'll sit in my chair and cover our other chair with "stuff" and then watch me stand in the middle of the room, trying to figure out where  to sit before he starts to chuckle and finally moves for me. Or he'll roll onto my side of the bed while I brush my teeth at night and burrow in like a tick, refusing to move until I threaten pillow violence... I love him so much. :D

If I ever meet any of you delightful readers outside of Bloggy Land, I'm really not too neurotic... just don't sit in my spot. :)

I have to go take my Viking in to be cleaned/serviced/etc... Erica's is nice enough to give the first one free, so I might as well take advantage of it before we move! Which means, whenI get home, the real test comes for Clinton... how well does my Fashion Mate piece?


(Come on, ladies and gents, a few more followers! Ok, more than a few if we're going to get to 26... but come on! I'm going to get things for the giveaway today! Maybe if I post a picture later you'll be more enticed...)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

When I round the bend

I started feeling better today, so I decided to work on one of Jen's commissioned pieces- a quilted laptop sleeve. She also asked for 5 coffee sleeves, but they aren't due until December; the laptop sleeve is for her mom's birthday which is just a day before mine.

And now I'm going to behave a little and rest some more. My face has stopped hurting... that's always a good sign.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Only needs borders, then quilting!

Took it out of the hoop to be warmer while hand quilting.
Rest? I'll get to that.


(Maybe tomorrow, you know, when this lack of resting reminds me why I should.)

Cold? or cold?

The plumber just left-- the problem ended being not as bad as it could have been... but it turns out there was NO fitting connecting the drain pipe to the next pipe; it was just kind of sitting on top. My MIL didn't even realize this house is that bad. Oh well, crisis averted, and the plumber will be back tomorrow to finish.

Since I had to air out the house all day, it's been a bit nippy in here, but not unbearable. However, the cold seems to have aggravated whatever I have been fighting since yesterday evening. I can't tell if I'm sick, or if it's just sinuses, or what.

On a happy note, though, I got TONS done on the blue/green quilt I am making from the jelly roll. I hadn't worked on it for a couple weeks, and it seemed like a good project to pass the day. My hands look terrible from whatever is on the unwashed fabric, but I've reached the home stretch. The middle only has a few more rows before it is ready for borders.

Not an entirely bad day. :)

Not good, not good at all!!!

Did you know there is a sure-fire appetite-suppresant AND motivation killer?
Well, there is.


I attempted to unclog the shower drain, and now the house has the most wretched smell.... and I don't know what to do! Apparently, if it's a minor problem, it will dissipate on its own... but otherwise I might have to call a plumber. This after Tim told me yesterday that the AF messed up his orders and paid him too much, which means he has to return money, so we don't exactly have any extra...

So, I don't know what to do right now. It smells so baldy I can't stand to be in the house much longer. And, apparently it's hazardous to breathe in. Awesome (SARCASM!!!)


UPDATE: After calling our landlord, which in this case is conveniently my MIL, I get to hurry up and wait until the plumber calls to come check out the problem. I hate being the bearer of bad news when I call her, especially when she told me she had to put another cat down today, and yet again one everyone loved-- Poor Boots is now in kitty heaven. He was the fattest cat I have ever seen, and he got that way (no kidding here) by being fed McDonald's by his previous owners.

And the waiting begins... at least it's not too cold so I can have the doors both open. Good thing I have my sewing machines to keep me busy.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tonight's lesson

NEVER trust that a needle has a fresh tip just because you are taking it straight from the package.

That FMQ I did earlier on Clinton, the fashion mate, looked a little off when I flipped it over... I noticed the needle had pushed the threads of the fabric all the way through! Despite wanting to stay home and figure it out, I went to class. Whenever I ran out of things to say during our poetry workshop, my mind wandered back to Clinton.... what's his deal?

I got home, tried sewing a few more scraps, same problem. So I changed the needle-- it wouldn't catch the bobbin thread! But that just turned out to be sill me putting it in backwards. Once that was fixed, all problems were solved. Which got me to thinking... I picked up the needle I had been using (which, mind you, I took straight from the package and put in last night when I got home from Wally World) and looked at it-- NO POINT! It looked like the tip had snapped off!!!

To reiterate: Check your tips. I don't want to blame Wally World or Singer, since they were official Singer needles (I put a Schmetz in)... but someone in quality control should be reprimanded. Just a bit.

Happy sewing!

Tomorrow brings a new project...

Oh, the joy!

 Let there be light! thanks to a sewing maintenance kit I got at Wally World, I replaced the bulb. The kit also had the proper-sized screw drivers, oil, a lint brush, and a vinyl machine cover, and a couple other odds and ends. All for just $10. Running total for the machine: $35
Today's 10 minutes of play. This became a pocket to hold the feet for my Fashion Mate, officially named Clinton.
So, today, I got a walking foot for it, and a free-motion/darning foot, plus a new belt (The old one was cracked, and I figured if I replace it now, it won't crack in the middle of a project!). That was another $35. This brings the total machine cost so far to $70... which is STILL cheaper than any decent table I was able to find for my Viking! And, perhaps the best benefit of all, when I take my Viking in to be serviced, I won't be machine-less for 2 weeks now!!!!

I also spent $10 today on the replacement belt for the treadle. I figured I might as well get it today while I was at the sewing store to cut down on gas/future temptation by their pretty threads.

I have found that I LOVE tinkering. I think it must be my dad's genes expressing themselves. I got a "tinker's high," which I'm calling that because the happiness I felt last night after the first session of cleaning/fixing was akin to what I feel after a long run.

I wish I could stay home tonight and play, but alas, it's Monday, which means class.

Until later....

(Don't forget... 26 followers and I'll host a giveaway! Come on, it's for my birthday in November!)

Sunday, October 17, 2010


I just opened up, cleaned and oiled my new-to-me machine all by myself! Oh how I love the things that were made before "planned obsolescence." I then did a test sew, and other than a little noise from the belt, IT IS AWESOME! The belt needs replacing... no big deal, though, since I've found them cheap online! I also plan to go to a local sewing repair store downtown to look for one, and see if while I'm there, they might be able to find the one that the treadle machine will need. Yes, I plan on getting the treadle into working order. Why not? I want to be able to sew on it... what if there's a power outage? :)

I am ridiculously happy right now. The feeling of having fixed my machine by myself is awesome. Maybe I should look around Peru/Kokomo for sewing machine repair shops that are hiring... haha. I think it's my dad's genes expressing themselves. That's all I can think of to explain this high I'm on right now.

(FOLLOW for a chance at a giveaway that will start in November!!!)

I should be a "picker"

I got home about an hour ago from going to look at the sewing machines... I bought 2!!!! This one got to come home today since it fit in the back seat of my Civic, cabinet and all....
I got it home, inspected it, ad have looked it up all over... and I GOT A GREAT DEAL! It runs very well. I paid $25 for it... just saw one sell on eBay for over $150.
the older one has to wait until friday to come live with me... Tim is going to come back with me to get it in the truck. I only paid the guy partway for it, in an effort to make sure it's still there Friday. Isn't is gorgeous??? It's a model 27, and according to the serial number I looked up, made in 1904. I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!!! Once it's all paid for, I will have paid only $25 for it, too!!!
Can you believe it? BOTH machines for $50. I love a good find like that!!!

Now I have to name them... I think the Fashion Mate shall be called Clinton, after my favorite "fashion mate," Clinton Kelly of What Not To Wear.
The other will get named once it is in our house.

Oh happy day! I should go be a picker, waht with all the good deals I find on Tim's old belt buckles, and now this. :)

SO excited.... going to look at some machines in cabinets!

Late last night, I did my check of Craigslist for sewing machines. I've been looking for a machine in a cabinet that is in decent condition (good enough to not cost most on repairs than purchase), not computerized, etc. so I can try machine quilting with it. There's nothing wrong with my Helga, Viking, except for it not being IN a table. I have the little acrylic table, but all I can seem to FMQ well is a table runner.

Back to last night. I found a listing for not 1, not 2, not 3, but 4 machines!!!! One of them is an old singer treadle... the person is asking $25 each!!! i called Tim and made sure he was ok with it, then sent an inquiry. They're all old Singers and Kenmores.... I MUST HAVE ONE! I know the newer Singers have a bad rap, but I learned on a Singer from the 70s and had no problems. From all the research I've been doing, Singers are kind of like American cars in that light-- the old ones were amazing, detailed, reliable, but now they're having to fight to get back to their glory.

So, today at 3, I'm going to check out an old treadle and 3 relatively-speaking newer machines, none newer than the 70s. :)

My guess is I'm buying at least one today. Now I just need a man with a truck, or to wait until Wednesday when MY man with a truck gets home.


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Something for nothing, in a sense

It's been one of those days where I feel like I got nothing done, and yet when I sit here and revisit the past 12 hours, I did a ton:

-picked up a new ruler for squaring up blocks
-treated myself to Miss Rosie's Spice of Life Quilts since I had an awesome coupon for Borders
-lunch with Mom and Aunt Rose
-trip to Target for another bin to help organize
-packed a box of books and a box of mugs/miscellany
-got groceries to last another gallon of milk
-folded/put away fabric
-pieced another 60 pairs for the blue UFO from the precuts (this was as long as the hands could stand)
-wrote 300 words for an assignment due Monday
-wrote my 100 line poem, also due Monday

Yeesh! I think the reason I feel like I got nothing done is because nothing was Finished... that word is quickly becoming a metaphorical 4-letter word! I need to just head to bed (now that whatever police chase was going on for the last hour and a half seems to have ended) and remind myself that I DID a lot, despite not getting anything "done."

PS: Thanks to the eight of you following... Only 16 more and I'll have met my goal, which will mean a giveaway!!!!

Friday, October 15, 2010


Heeheehee.... I found it!!! It took 4 stops total, and I ended up getting it at the grocery store!!! Heehee, I'm so happy! I would start work on my own Anita's Arrowheads quilt tonight, but Mom's neighborhood (still feels like mine even though I've been gone for 1.5 years) is having a Soup-er fall fest.

PS- 8 followers! Yay! And thanks!!! 18 more to reach the goal!!!!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Still no magazine...

 After a trip to the MIL's this morning, I made these cute Halloween coasters today. I checked CVS for the magazine-- it was one of those "Might as well, since I'm here" kind of checks, so I wasn't too surprised that they didn't have it. Then, we took a trip to Wally World, and I was very disappointed that they seem to no longer carry Quiltmaker AT ALL!!!


We came home and I found one thing to do that I can never stay grumpy during: pumpkin carving!
Mine is on the left, Tim's on the right.
I love carving pumpkins.

Tomorrow, Tim goes back to work, so I will resume my Quiltmaker magazine hunt. Perhaps I will start with Erica's....

Reminder: If I get 26 followers, I'll host a giveaway during November!!!

A hunt for the treasure hunt issue of Quiltmaker!!!

The dishes are done. Laundry is rumbling in the washer. As soon as I shower, I might have to go on a quest...

The newest issue of Quiltmaker is out, and since I saw the preview picture of a featured quilt, Anita's Arrowheads, I have wanted to make it!!! So, it was to my chagrin that neither Joann's nor Wally World had it out on time!!!! I hate when I find magazines with a "display until" date that has past, since this means the new one is lurking somewhere in the store's storage area!!!

This is one of MANY reasons I cannot wait to move. I have already decided that quilt magazines will be on my Christmas list, since we will finally have an address that will be ours for at least a couple years. Not to mention a dishwasher not named Me.

But, for today, I shall just do my best to convince the Hubs to take me on an adventure... and then later we can carve our pumpkins. :) Sounds like a good day to me!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Smiles all around!

Anybody having twins? :)
I finished both of the D9P baby quilts!!! I am very pleased-- they are quilted in a super simple wave, not too close (I love the fact that my batting allows for less quilting like this). Now, I just need to sell them... time to investigate local venues, I guess.

I only stabbed my non-thimbled finger 6 times... I guess I need to start using 2 thimbles.

And, on another happy note, Tim got the 944 running! Perfect timing, too, since the truck has been falling apart more and more with every mile it travels, lately having lost the entire exhaust.

And, I made butternut squash soup tonight, and it tasted pretty good!

Let's hear it for good days. The only thing that made it EVEN better yet is that every time the news comes on, there is more good news from Chile!!! It's so wonderful for such a potential tragedy to become such a miracle!!!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Who doesn't love a face like this?

My bull terrier: friend, project supervisor, foot cleaner, and barnacle of love.
 Oh, Prudence! Isn't she sweet? She's the only baby I need! However, the Hubs would love to get her a brother-- a presa canario-- which is a "small mastiff," you know, only 100-180 lbs!!! Good thing he's not likely to deploy for a while if we get a critter like that!

(and now, back to our regularly scheduled programing)
After a quick trip to Wally World for the latest issue of F&P Love of Quilting, look what I got done! And this time, I sewed all the nine-patches correctly, so when they were cut and re-sewn it came out correctly! Yay! It needs borders, still but I was just so pleased I had to pause and celebrate!

Now I can move on to quilting the one with the mistake/improvisation, and then quilt this one, and then MAYBE find somewhere to sell them on commission. :)

Huzzah! It's going to be a good day!

A good end to a bad day

I need 20 more followers to reach my goal... won't you help me? I want to host a giveaway, but I need to know there's an audience, first!

I am happy to report that I had FUN in class last night!!! Seven of the undergrads were not there, which made for a delightful, happy, class, full of constructive criticism during the workshop process and intelligent remarks overall... now if only more classes could be like that!

This was made all the more enjoyable since I had THE WORST time at JoAnn's... there was some sort of problem with the register not ringing up 2 of my 3 remnants as remnants, which then caused it to put my coupons on the wrong items, making the total off by $7. In the grand scheme of things, $7 isn't much, but it's enough that I wanted to make sure it got fixed. After about 10 minutes of standing and waiting, I started getting embarrassed because the line by now has grown to about 20 people behind me and they just then got back up. And then the woman who came to help started yelling at me when she thought she had figured it out (but had only managed to get it 60 cents more in my favor), so I had to calm her down and basically make it very clear I am not frustrated with Any of the humans in the store, I was frustrated with the computer. UGH!
45 minutes later, they had it mostly figured out, but it has resulted in 2 charges on my bank card, one for the wrong amount, one for the right one. The wrong one was voided in the Joann's register, so when my account refreshes for the day, it better disappear from my statement and return my money. If not, I get to go to the bank with my voided receipt, signed by the store manager and everything, and let the bank figure it out. : /
A simple backing purchase turned out to be miserable. Let's hope that was all the "bad" for the week!!!

Today, I am going to be working on those finishes I mentioned yesterday. The funny thing is that I can potentially quilt at least one of them in less time than I spent waiting in line yesterday!

Here's a random, rather scary dream from last night: My mom took me on a bullet train in America, and it ran straight into an oncoming train, flattening over 40 people. The conductor then got out with an air hose and proceeded to re-inflate them, telling me, "See? You were right; this is just a dream. Nobody's dead. Ta-da!" At which point all the inflated bodies jumped up smiling. WEIRD!

On that note, time to go piece, quilt, and be merry!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Monday, funday...

I finally got some good sleep again, despite being up for about half an hour petting Prudence-- did you know dogs can have nightmares? I woke up while she was crying in her sleep from one. My poor puppy woke up when I turned the light on, but continued to cry a little, so I got out of bed and soothed my little girl until she seemed settled down again. It breaks my heart to see her look scared like that from a nightmare. But then we both got back to sleep, and all is well.

Today has an agenda (I hate that). The fun part will be lunch with Jen, and a quick stop to find backing fabric to FINISH some projects this week. I would love to work on finishing tonight, but that's where the agenda is no longer fun... class tonight... :( I wish I were enjoying this class as much as I loved some others. 

For your reading amusement, though, here is the poem of mine that will be workshopped until I want to sew my ears shut to block out the inane comments of some of my classmates (I guarantee they won't get that the ONLY thing this poem is about is quilting and preferring fabric to mean people! I'll try not to laugh this time if they call it a murder or something along those lines again...)

Little Miss Anthrophy

I can run through cotton
full-tilt, whizzing then
winning when
it puts up a fight.
I can push it
and pull it and
squish, stretch, shove it
until it behaves, and then
throw it in a box until
tomorrow if I’m tired, even
leave it under the bed for
weeks, a month, a year.
I can sit in silence stitching,
or listen to the tv, or
kneel on the floor of our
little kitchen running
a rotary blade through layer
after layer, the quilter’s
classic stripping.
I can turn fibers
into art, or into
warm throws to crawl under
or a runner and placemats
for the table we don’t yet have.
I can piece and find peace, my
active meditation, my
happy place, my heaven.
And then, when I am again
around my fellows,
young Americans
wondering why I’m here,
I remember:
there’s a reason I was named
Most Likely to Live In
An Underground Lair.

Sunday, October 10, 2010


What flaw?

(Don't forget... 26 followers, and I'll host a giveaway!)

Is it a crisis, or not?

What do you do when you notice an error in a quilt when it's too late to fix? Do you agonize for hours, trying to figure out if there are seams that can be ripped and restitched to get that color layout right? Or do you chalk it up to creative license?

This is the dilemma in which I find myself tonight... after a whirlwind day, more productive than usual, I discovered AFTER I had cut a D9P patch wrong, that it, the Last of the 4, was in fact wrong. I must have pieced it incorrectly-- that's all I can figure out.

Do you see the error? I pieced the bottom two rows as two blocks first... it's not in them. Then I cut the top right, and still everything looked great. And then there's that pesky upper left quadrant: I must have sewn the nine-patch wrong, not noticed, then cute it and sewed the two pairs, and THEN laid it out and noticed!!!


What am I going to do?

After pondering the possibility of ripping way too many seams, I went ahead and sewed the last two. I'm looking at this quilt as another lesson to check before I cut. It's also serving as a larger, more difficult lesson: LET GO OF YOUR OCD.

I have been making baby steps in letting go of some of my perfection-driven habits, and have been trying to modify destructive obsessive-compulsive behaviors. This quilt have given me the opportunity to allow an imperfection without it being something I'll have to stare at or deal with every day, since I intend to either sell it or give it away. I can't stand the thought of selling something "flawed," but that whole concept begs the question: Is it flawed or not?

My conclusion is that the quilt is not as flawed as my silly brain's desire for perfection. So, I probably will sell it... but I won't ask as much as I originally planned! See, compromise!

The borders are cut, and will be sewn on, thus eliminating any choice. And before I can change my mind, I'll do some simple quilting, similar to the other D9P. Nad then I will bind it, "flaws" and all, and take it with me as I look for a local place to sell things on commission in an attempt to build a customer base.  And then I will know just how flawed it is, or isn't.

NOT a lazy Sunday

I walked three laps of Newton park for the Hospice walk, which I was told is three miles. I would have walked more, but it got HOT!!! So, Mom made the executive decision that we were done.

I loved what I saw on tv when I got home-- the Bears were ahead!!! YAY! And they won decisively!

And, I have continued my productivity [despite trying to take a nap, and having it ruined by the stupid neighbors and their loud crotchrockets.... why do some people think those bikes look cool? Harleys and regular motorcycles are dangerous enough, but the super fast ones (often with helmetLESS riders) just make me think ORGAN DONOR].

I cut this before the walk:

 I knew that it would be enough for two baby quilts, one more boyish and the other girly. But, after sewing together and cutting and re-sewing 2 blocks, I found out I am only going to need 4 nine-patches, not 6...
I love the ease of a D9P! And how it shows off fun prints without overpowering them!
So, it looks like I'll be able to make a third baby quilt using the leftovers!!! YAY!!! The hope is to get these finished in a timely fashion (which means still not finishing any UFOs per se, but it will be three finishes), and then taking them to a little boutique in the area that sells all sorts of cute gifts, some handmade from local people and sold on commission. I want to find out what % they take, and compare that to what I've heard another local shop takes, and then see if I can FINALLY make a sale!!!

While I love all the compliments I've been getting from people in the family, friends, and even on my blog, I will do the biggest Happy Dance once I finally Sell a quilt!
It will be slightly larger even than the happy dance I will do once I see Dustin and Cathi's baby, Cortlyn, wrapped in the quilt I made for her... :)

Dinner tonight: ratatouille, that was made a couple weeks ago but frozen for just such an "I don't want to cook" evening... the only thing "lazy" about this Sunday!

REMINDER!!! Start following if you haven't already, so I can reach my goal of 26 followers and host a giveaway for my 26th birthday!!!

Good Morning!

The combination of this Indian summer heat wave and my crazy metabolism have me up already!!!! I don't know anyone else who frequently wakes up in the middle of the night because they are hungry. Anyone above the age of 4 months, that is-- I hear babies often have to feed during the night. And it's not just a mild hunger, it's the kind where I'm in a full-fledged hot flash from low blood sugar. There's no ignoring that!

So here I sit, having already had breakfast, drinking cup #1 of coffee. I half-jokingly told my Hubs that I need one of those tiny soda can fridges to put by my side of the bed, only I would stock it with string cheese and applesauce.

There is one upside: I can work on a sewing project now!!! Had I woken up at a more pleasant time, say, 8, I wouldn't have had SIX hours to kill before I need to leave for the hospice walk. So, there is that small upside.

Now, the question becomes, on what to work? The cat quilt? Or a new project? I really need to finish more, but it's early, and I want to play... :)

Discipline can come later in the day! Perhaps I will limit it to play during the coffee hours, then FINISHING after the walk. I think i can live with that.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Like scraps of Christmas...

I just went through a bag of scraps that Sally sent home with me last Tuesday... It was a mixture of a Mary Poppins bag, and scraps of Christmas! I couldn't believe how beautiful some of these little pieces are!!! I have to make something out of them... but what? There's a wide variety of sizes of craps, from strings to small triangles to chunks as big as a fat quarter.... ooo, the possibilities!

So, here's what else I've done today:

 The cat quilt center is DONE....
And here are the first 3 letters!!! It will eventually read "Crazy Cat Lady"... it's a family joke with my MIL.

I didn't get any entire projects done tonight, but I think finishing the cat quilt center counts as good progress. Besides, I also spent 1.5 hours helping Mom piece, the middle of the day running errands with her and my aunt, and then dinner with the grandparents... I think my level of productivity is acceptable.

Tomorrow is the hospice walk, so I know I'll be pretty busy at least until late afternoon.

Look who is also enjoying a fabric scrap???

Don't forget to "follow"... if I get 26 followers by November 1, I'll host my first giveaway!!! Come on!

Friday, October 8, 2010

It's an ice cream night

Even though I'm still not employed by the "real world" (have they ever been a Homemaker? I'll bet not! It's a full-time job of it's own!), I still like Fridays... which is why I am celebrating this one. I just had one snack of bread and brie, and when I'm done with this I will finish my snack break with some ice cream.

 Mom and I went to a pumpkin patch today!!! I got to tromp through and find 3 pumpkins for Tim and I-- two will be carved, but the other one will be getting a pair of pants... See why?
Prudence had to sniff the pumpkins when I got home, starting with the Plumber Pumpkin... :)

I've been working on piecing two houses from a Snap Sack kit I got during the Shop Hop... I've decided that I am NOT going to complete the kit as described in the instructions, but rather use the kit to make MORE houses than just two, and then turn it into a bigger project... you know, something more usable than a 16" by 22" rectangle.

Speaking of usable, I ran out of strips for the rug... I'm only using the otherwise unusable pieces. But look:

 It's kind of fun!
So far, I have stitched 3 rows-- just straight lines across, stacking the strips 3-4 at a time to create a plush feel. It's definitely colorful. As you can see, I did put selvedges in. It seemed like a good use for them.
I found out that filling a sandwich bag with strips will yield at least a row, so from now on, I am putting my small strips in a designated baggy so that I can work on this project over time.

I need to work on FINISHING more projects... it seems all I've done lately is start them. I had been finishing, but not for 2 weeks now. So, I think it's time to find some motivation and Finish something. I have a list of Things that must Wait, like tim's present-- I need to find a table of some sort to set my machine in so that I can quilt that project (and basically both other Christmas projects I have started).

Anyone have such a beast? Or, know where I can find one relatively inexpensively? Maybe this break will continue a little longer while I search the web...

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Happy days-mostly

We spent the morning wandering Menards, looking at fences, paint, knobs, and such... quite the happy married life morning.

Later, i managed to get some more sewing done on the cats, and I've been playing with some scraps Sally gave me the other day... I started a half-crazed project-- a rag rug, made from sewing small strips to a solid piece of fabric with just a short seam in the middle of the strips. Sally has a rug like this that feels really nice and she uses it in front of her stove, so I figured I would try with some of the wonky strips that would otherwise be thrown out... this includes selvedges, too. It's a great experiment. I'll try it out, see what happens when I wash it, and then decide.

Photos to come tomorrow...

The only glitch (and I say glitch because it turned out to be minor) in the day was that I got a call just after starting dinner form my mom-- she was rear-ended by some woman who was distracted by her radio... the lady said it was her second time in two months doing this!!! Some people never learn-- eyes on the road! But, Mom seems ok-- shaken up, angry, a little sore-- but ok. her car bumper had to be tied up to avoid scratching other parts of the car-- thank goodness Tim was here!
Mom and I are going to pick out pumpkins tomorrow. I have a feeling she'll be sore and still not back to Normal, so I decided we'd get some pumpkins... it's something that my family has loved as long as I can remember.

Reminder: 26 Followers and I will host a giveaway in November!!!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

One box at a time

Moving is going to happen, so I have been trying to at least sort things, purge a few things, etc. Here, I put all of my quilting book and magazines not currently in use into one of my cube-bins, you know, the kind that fit on the Closetmaid storage units... and the great thing is, only one book wouldn't fit, but it happens to be large enough that I can set it on top and then the bin becomes a nice spot to put my laptop when not in use.

If it gets cold enough, I'll put my summer clothes into a zippered under bed storage unit... it seems like every time I do that, though, I bring another late heat wave.

But this is what I managed to work on before the Hubs got home today... it's for his mom. She's almost a crazy cat lady (or so we tease), so she's getting a cat quilt.


Now that's LOVE

My husband is on his way home... he stayed with a friend last night so they could change the oil in the friend's wife's car... I have such a kind husband!

He called to let me know he's on the way, and during the conversation I told him about my sashing dilemma-- you know what his answer was? "When I get home, I'll take you back to the fabric store and we'll pick out something else." Now that's the kind of husband every quilter needs!!! And then he said, "I'm sure you'll use those strips for something else... weren't you talking about making a scrap quilt with strips?" He listens, too!!!  I wonder if he remembers that I was talking about wanting Bonnie Hunter's book, Adventures with Leaders and Enders.... :) He really is good to me. I am so blessed to have such a loving husband... and I know he feels the same way when I make lasagna. :D

Another reminder: If I get 26 followers by November, I'll be hosting a giveaway!!!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Need that design wall pronto!

So, I went ahead and got fabric for sashing... got home, laid the blocks roughly on it, thought ok, then proceed to wash (I have to because of super sensitive skin), dry, press, and CUT the 2" strips.... only to discover AFTER I had cut enough strips that I preferred an alternate layout that will require Much Less fabric from the sashing fabric:

The original idea.... once I got to this step, though, I decided I didn't like it... UGH!!! All those strips cut for nothing!!!
THIS is what I think I'm going to actually do... But I might wait until after we move (that means a month) so that I can set up a design wall and actually play around before I commit to it, since I've already doubted once.
Maybe I can use up the extra strips for a border... big, deep sigh. I love my trees, and I want to get this "right." After I looked at that photo, I started thinking about adding a house in the "woods"... hmm... then that really screws up the idea os sashing!!! Decisions, decisions... this is where I need Tim home-- he'll listen to me talk about these ideas, and usually by the time I explain well enough for him to start to grasp my idea, I've figured out what I want to do. And then he usually smiles and gives me a kiss, and tells me it will look good no matter what I do. :)

And, now that I've been staring at those photos, I might reject that fabric for sashing completely... back to square one.... :/
I"m sure that swirly blue will get used somewhere!!! Maybe in this project yet.

A day for sharing the love!

Yesterday, I was notified that I won a random drawing from the Shop Hop last week! Wheee!!! I went down to Calico Point to pick it up... it's the prettiest sewing basket, and it was filled with goodies... three small spools of thread (2 greens and a yellow), a large spool of natural colored thread, a seam ripper, a flower pincushion,  the coolest retractable tape measure I've ever seen, some buttons, machine needles, a bobbin box, and scissors.... IT'S PERFECT!!! I was just thinking I would love a new pair of scissors, and how nice it would be to have a second sewing basket when I get my sewing room... perfect timing!!!

Today, I decided to share the love... my MIL was looking for a bobbin box during the shop hop, and all 6 stores were out of them!!! I have one-- and even with my new set of 10 bobbins, it's not full. So, I took the one that came in the prize package and took it down to her-- she was very pleased. It makes me happy knowing someone who needed it is now using it-- you should have seen the bobbins spilling out of a box on her table! 

Then, I visited another quilt friend, Sally... I met this wonderful lady at the Essenhaus show 2 months ago. Every time I go over to her house, I have so much fun. I truly am an old soul. We laugh and chat about fabric and life and more fabric. Today she sent me home with a bag of scraps... guess who's going to be making some more wonky stars!!! She also gave me two leaf blocks that she didn't care for since the colors weren't quite right... I'm sure I can find a home for them in a new project!

I feel so content right now, mostly because of such a fulfilling day, but also because I have a full belly of homemade chicken fried rice. :) Let's here it for good friends and good food!!!!

Reminder: If I get 26 followers by the 1st of November, I'll host my first giveaway!!!! 

Monday, October 4, 2010

I'm going to host my own GIVEAWAY!

IF I get 26 followers by November 1, I will be hosting my own *little* giveaway....

That's not such a big goal, is it? I feel like I need to share the love a little...

So, if the goal is reached, there will be a small giveaway for My Birthday next month.... stay tuned!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Success! For me, anyway....

That's 42 finished tree blocks for my scrappy Christmas quilt... I do want to put sashing on (I finally decided), and I think I might have decided on a color-- if I can find the right color of blue plaid, I think that will look cool. Perhaps... I wish I could "borrow" it from a store if I find some and lay all the blocks on it before committing to buying it, since it is going to take a sizable piece.

Oh well. If it doesn't work when i get it home, I'm sure it will get used eventually.

Here are the stars for the Block Lotto:

I got the first two done, and some of the lights didn't look so light anymore...
So, I made another block using just the "darkest light"... and now it looks light again!

Isn't it fascinating how color values change like that? I hope the three mixed blocks are ok, though, given this conundrum.

The Bears are frustrating me tonight.... 8 sacks so far!!! Really? MAJIDE???  Come on, Bears!!! Get it together!!!

There and back again

This morning, I woke up earlier than necessary, as I knew I would. I can never sleep until my alarm goes off!!! But that meant I was in Grissom by 10:30, dropped off the things Tim needed, shared a delightfully casual lunch at BWW and then headed home by 1. Despite the best efforts of the idiots one the road, i made it home safely, albeit very tired.
I got in my door at 3, which meant there was plenty of time for a nap... but no such luck. So, I have been playing in my fabric-- I joined the Block Lotto today, and so I decided to make my first block for it while still making small progress on the trees. Once I get my contacts out and find my glasses, I'll return to sewing land and work more diligently on the trees, with the wonky stars used for leaders/enders.
For the Block Lotto... I'm planning on making a couple more later. 

Piping hot! YUM!
And I made beef with broccoli.... it tasted good enough that I don't mind my house smelling like an asian restaurant for a bit. Hooray for candles, though.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Yeah, I got distracted... nothing new there

I love pincushions. I kind of collect patterns for them, and have slowly been making some.... but tonight, the Sugar Cube was calling!!! It's from Moda Bakeshop via Spun Sugar Quilts (the same I mentioned is having a giveaway).

I saw this pattern the first time I came across Spun Sugar, but then FORGOT TO BOOKMARK THE PAGE!!! So, when chance led me back there, I bookmarked. And then all planned productivity ended. I decided I would do another load of laundry that I had been putting off, but I would also reward myself by making this:

It's called a sugar cube pin cushion, and it's supposed to have buttons, and be hand-sewn, but in my ever-present impatience i machine stitched all but one side, skipped the paper step, and skipped buttons temporarily. I stitched it in a way that I can add them later, though.
But guess what? I STILL LOVE IT!!!!!

Now I have another use for scrap 2.5" squares! Oh, darn. :)

I've been great at procrastinating tonight... but hopefully, once I get home from Grissom tomorrow I'll be able to get some good sewing done. Prudence will have been playing with Fergie all day, and the Bears will be on, which means I will have no excuse not to get stuff done!

I got 4 more T-shirts cut, but not interfaced... is that a word? It is now. I also cut three "cat heads" out from the last piece of green leafish print. I love using up a fabric! Well, most of the time.... every once in awhile I'll have a print that I love love love and have to keep at least a smidgeon... :)

I do believe I should head to bed so I'll have enough energy tomorrow.


Found another giveaway!

Maybe I spend too much time on my computer.... but when I find other quilters, it's worth it. And when they're sharing the love, I like to pass it along, too!

So, today's found giveaway is over at Spun Sugar Quilts. Check out that blog! Wow, not only is she productive, but look at all the tutorials! You know that list of mine for things to do tonight? I might have to add some more fun stuff to it... 

Oh, Saturdays.... College football, golf naps, and today, a biplane nap... I think there was an air show somewhere near (or maybe practice for one, since Google couldn't find any) because three days in a row I have been lulled by the drone of some awesome WWII planes, and today it resulted in a nap! Good thing I'm not in WWII England, or I never would have survived!

After running around with my mom and aunt, and then the biplane nap, I got busy... I've made 20 of my scrappy trees!

Making Christmas, making Christmas is so fun!
Prudence was supervising, of course... such a good little helper! I want a design wall whenever I get my sewing room. It would be really helpful Now.... I can't decide if I want the trees with or without sashing.... and then the problem would be what color of sashing? Hmm, maybe I should look up how to make a portable design wall so I can make it now and take it with me!

Regardless, I have 22 trees left to make, then maybe I will figure out to sash, or not to sash. Without sashing, they will finish at 6" x 7.5" As it stands right now, they will be laid out 7 wide and 6 down. I have several other projects in the works, so if I get stuck, I'll just shift to something else!!

Here's the sewing caddy I made last night... I wish I had better lighting in our living room. But what matters is that the near side holds all my thread and my celly, while the far side hold my needle case, scissors, and a pencil (for now). Love it! I used one of my shop hop fat quarters for the pockets, and the same green that is in my leaf applique.

I need to get the backing pieced for Tim's Xmas present... I want to have Sally quilt it, but I won't have money to pay here until after we move.... see the problem? So, I think if I go see her on Monday, I'll take it again and just ask her advice for attempting to quilt it on my own... I think if I can get a table that my sewing machine can be set in, then I could manage... so, it comes down to: will I get a suitable table in time? Or will I be better off just committing now to siphoning off from weekly money to try to pay for it to be quilted sooner rather than later? Hmm....

Tonight's agenda during the ND game: gather fabrics for MIL's Christmas present, get at least 2 more T-shirts ready for Benny's present, maybe get Tim's backing pieced? And then finish with a couple more "happy little trees." :)