Monday, January 31, 2011

Oh, sNOw!!!

It has started already... for once, the hourly function on my weather app was spot on. It's not often you see 100% chance of snow, but that's what we have tonight and tomorrow. Yeesh. I'm glad we got 2 half gallons of milk (they were out of gallons.... this happens on a normal Monday here, so I wasn't totally surprised) and did our Big grocery shop for this week. Tim was with me, which means we spent more than usual (he's indulgent sometimes... today it was picking out a Godiva dark chocolate bar for me) but if this storm is as bad as predicted, it will be a very good thing that we have all the food we need for a week.

In case I'm snowed in (ICISI), I have projects lined up to keep me busy:
1. Bunny Hill Designs  has a free block of the month, Henrietta Whiskers. It's simply too darn cute not to at least make a block or two! I made the background of block one today, figuring I'd do the applique tomorrow ICISI.
2. There's still more assembly to be done on RRCB. I don't know what has caused me to stagnate, but I'm blaming it on the cold. So, I could just suck it up an get it done.
3. My hexagons are nearing the end- for the pillow, anyway. ICISI, I might get it to the quilting stage quicker than anticipated.

Now that I've established a plan, I hope the forecast fizzles a bit!!!!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Tedious, but worth it.

 She's been sleeping like this while I made more hexagon progress.
I had to get up for a green tea break... now both monsters are running around and causing a ruckus. But as soon as I sit back down, they will probably settle back into their sleeping spots and conk out again. I love dogs.


What's better than a bull terrier in camo or a jean jacket?

A Presa Canario in a purple polo!!!!

It's a great day again.


Friday, January 28, 2011

Slow going

This is what I was doing while most of the state was sleeping. Since I took this picture at 6 am, I have sewn 10 more purple hexies. I've been up since 4, so I'm sewing slowly at this point.

When Tim got up, he found a leaking pipe in the basement that caused all sorts of chaos- thankfully, he was able to temporarily fix it (I love being married to a handyman!).

So, we needed a little stress relief...

 Roid Rage Barbie (Our nickname for her since she's so muscular) joins the Air Force!!!
When she's not in uniform, she masquerades as a hoodlum.

I hope that brightens someone else's day as much as ours.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Inspiration at all hours

Have you ever had a project idea land in you head, fully formed, at a really random time?


I love this button- an awesome clearance find... 96 cents instead of $9! 

came to me as I was about 2 steps away from getting in bed last night. Not exactly good timing, but thankfully I had a scrap of paper and a pencil next to the bed, so I was able to sketch it out well enough to feel confident enough to go to sleep.

It's a small travel sewing caddy. It fits a small spool of thread, my small scissors, and a pack of needles, with three pockets to spare! Which means I could tuck in hexie papers in one, and cough drops in the other two since this will be taken on a plane and I always get dry mouth the second they put away the beverage cart... do they still have those? Or was that one of the many things now cut?

It was almost surreal the way it came to me, fully formed. Has anyone else had such a clear vision of a project land in the head like that?

It took 4 more of my random squares, too. That leaves probably 100 or so squares waiting to be designated towards one project or another. I love my Go... another reason I want to find a job-- so i can buy more dies for it!!!! Plus I whined asked Tim to take me to the LQS in Kokomo today- we've been here 7 weeks and I hadn't made it their yet! He was nice enough to let me pick out 3 FQ's to make a small project inspired by a floor.... which brings another reason I need/want a job-- to buy more fabric!!!

 I'm going to file this one away with a couple other projects I've designed... publishing a book is still a major goal of mine. The only way to achieve big things is to dream BIG THINGS!!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

3D bowties

(Colors are brighter in daylight.)

Remember that stack of squares I cut with my Go? This is a fun way to use them! Don't worry-- I'm not going to assemble them as they lay here. This was purely to photograph them. After I finish the other 30 or so sets of squares, I hope to have enough to play nicely in two quilts.

Thanks to Cheri for this block... she had the link to the tutorial for these on her blog a long time ago... 

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Some people don't understand the appeal of football. They don't yell at the tv even when home alone, they don't frequent sports bars on big games with friends, they don't have not one but two jerseys for their team (one of which is Pink!).

But consider this: in the history of our great country, people used to go watch wars being fought. They would pack up a picnic basket and head to Bunker Hill, all in the name of entertainment. We used to watch people shooting at each other! So why is anyone surprised that football is popular? At least they have helmets, padding, and no one is pointing a musket!

Personally, right now I feel like Great Britain at the end of the Revolutionary War....

So close, Chicago, so close.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Figure this one out

I got my eyes checked again yesterday (it had been awhile...). The good news is that I have contacts again, and they're the correct RX again. BUT GET THIS: I went from being nearsighted to being farsighted!!!! No wonder I was having trouble seeing! All I can figure is that because my astigmatism worsened, it caused things to switch again. But I'm no Dr, I'm just guessing. Last time it happened, I had been going through a growth spurt when I was 11. I ended up with a horrible headache by the end of the day, though- happens every time I get new contacts. But I got this done before I was in too much agony:

Just needs to be quilted and bound and it will be ready to be donated to AAQI.
 And basted a bunch more of these:
 And since Tim loves the AAQI quilt so much, I decided to make hexagon flowers for our spring wall hanging:
I really love these hexies. I see now why people are such fans of them. If I can hand-baste these with the headache I had last night, they are definitely easy. And stitching these together while watching a movie with the hubs this afternoon kept us both happy.

I'll be happy as a clam this March when I have to fly again since I can bring handwork like this. I haven't flown in two and half years... it will be interesting. But at least I'm on the same flights as my momma, and we'll be headed to Florida! Even though it's because we're finally spreading my dad, I think it will still be a fun trip. Especially if I can work in a trip to a quilt shop... :)

Friday, January 21, 2011


I am a pro at procrastinating. The last few days, I've let Tim be a distraction for any and all things productive (2 days a week is ok since they're his days off). Today, I need to get back to business.

I haven't been totally idle, though-

They remind me of poker chips... wouldn't that be a fun swap? Trading hexies?
I have 54 more hexies basted. Some of these were done in the truck yesterday when we went and picked up the last two pieces of a cabinet from my mom's. These little guys will probably become a Kindle cover- I don't have one yet, but it's on my wish list, and Tim is always looking for ideas for presents, so I told him it would be a great anniversary gift... and by July 4th I should have enough of these basted and maybe sewn together to make the cover for it! I need to decide what colors, though, since right now they're all sorts of random scraps. I'm thinking either pink/green/orange or blue/brown/green for color schemes.... I feel like I need a wider variety of each shade so I can lay them out and decide on which colors to focus.

But, like I said, I also need to refocus on other projects already in the works. RRCB is about a third assembled- 4 rows done, plus about half the border units. My sewing room has been soooooo chilly lately because it has 3 windows and not much sun, and today's going to be a HIGH of 11... I really want to make some more progress, but if I get so cold that I pin my finger to the fabric without feeling it again, I'll have to stop until a warmer day.

First things first: to the gym!!!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I got hooked.

Tim called my RRCB in progress beautiful! That's even better than him calling me beautiful! I haven't made much more progress on it though... I've been on a quest of sorts.


I wanted to see if I could find a punch for them so I could conquer learn to English paper piece, and not that 7-hour fiasco that was the first hexie caddy. After much internet searching, and stopping in every place that carries any sort of paper crafting supplies in Kokomo (which, if you want to know, is only 5 according to Google maps), I came home and figured, No problem, I'll just print templates... but then the printer wouldn't communicate with my laptop! So I tried what I had to do last time- uninstall, then redownload software from the Lexmark website (last time I had to do this AFTER a 30 minute phone call with customer service). But guess what? Lexmark doesn't have the software link anymore!!!! Are you kidding me???? Thankfully, Tim saved the day... he was able to get the printer working earlier today, so I asked him- apparently Apple has the needed software, so just by plugging it in, my laptop identified what printer it was, and what it needed to function. This is why I love Apple! But it did take me about 2 hours to get frustrated, trace some pitiful hexies on my own, and finally hear back from Tim.

So, finally, while watching The Biggest Loser:

These are the pitiful hexies- they're slightly larger than the printed ones, but that's ok. I think this will get appliqued.... somewhere. But I have 5 sheets of 33 hexagons to play with. I cut on sheet already, and plan on basting the matching 7 pieces of fabric so that on our trip to get the last piece of furniture from my mom's I'll have something to do on the way up.

I'm telling you- Hexagons are addictive. Slow going right now, but I'm approaching them as a way to teach myself patience, especially while I feel like I'm in limbo again. So, stitch, stitch, breath.... if it's meant to be, it will happen.

Stitch, stitch, breath....

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Now we're rolling!

60 string blocks? FINALLY done.
Some have already been cut and re-sewn as required....
Added to the 30 Shoofly blocks from yesterday...
and we have a corner, people!

It may not be perfect, but I LOVE IT!!!!
Hooray, hooray! It feels so good to be so close to the finish!!!! I had put it all away because I thought it was about an hour later than it is... so now should I relax with a little Netflix? Or go sew some more? Or just go to bed? I'm a little worn out from this sewing marathon I've been on!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Getting there...

Main blocks are DONE!
 Now to finish those darn string blocks...
I started the outer border units despite only being halfway done with the string blocks (and that's just assembling the first step of them- THEN I'll have to slice and sew again!). But, laying it out like this, I was able to determine that a deep cranberry fabric I have will work for the inner border. Hooray for shopping my limited stash! That leaves just the binding and backing to be determined....

Friday, January 14, 2011


We got our espresso machine yesterday!!! I love it. Love, love love it. BTW, this former barista can still make better foam than half the people who have made me a drink since I left that job!!! I'm hoping it will help fuel a couple more bursts of quilting energy. I got more string blocks done for the mystery quilt,

These ones are awaiting paper removal and trimming. 
and turned 12 of the charms I cut into these fun blocks:

I think they need white around the edges to calm them down, maybe even sashing, but then I'll have a cute table runner for this summer barbecue my hubs is already planning!

Here's my problem/dilemma right now:

This doesn't look like enough strings to make 30 more string blocks. I think it would cut it very lose if I tried, and then if I had to get more neutral, I wouldn't want it only in a few blocks. I think I need to make a run to JoAnn's.... I just hate buying only neutrals!!! Now, if I could go pick out the fabric for the next big quilt I have planned, too, it would be much more fun! But that might have to wait a bit.

Hopefully, I'll hear back about one of the jobs for which I applied. My application is "under review," whatever that means. Let's hope the next step is an interview-- a part time job would mean more fabric money! :D

My next quilting adventure (ONE of them) is to start hand piecing triangle together.... an aimless waiting project that I can grab and go anytime I'll have to wait somewhere. We'll see what this creates!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Say Yes the Dress, that is. I love that show! I haven't seen it since before I got married, though- over a year and a half ago! But today, I discovered there's a whole season of it waiting for me on Netflix! And I'm now 8 episodes through it already. I think I love that show so much because it is completely opposite from me- when Tim proposed, we had way too many deadlines to meet. He was deploying, my dad was dying, and family schedules on top of that meant we had only 6 weeks! I went to one dress store, and the girl I worked with wanted to help, but unfortunately/luckily (?) I am small enough around and in height that even if the dress I wanted could have come in in time, it would have needed altering which would have put it  at least two weeks late. So my dress shopping consisted of an impromptu trip to White House Black Market with Tim(he didn't peek, though), randomly pointing at two white sundresses, and within 2 minutes deciding one of them would work. Don't get me wrong, I loved my dress for its practicality, and I used a coupon and saved $25! It fit, it was comfortable, and perfect for the setting...

But, I must confess, there is a small part of me that wishes I had done the big extravagant event of dress shopping. Sigh. Funny side note-- can you see that ATV in the background? We had to stop the ceremony about halfway through as it passed, and I couldn't help but snicker. I love that ATV for keeping us all grounded. Another funny thing I'll never forget is the way the sand squeaked on the beach. It had rained all morning, so when you squashed your foot down right, you could make it squeak. Needless to say, I spent our first five minutes married acting like a 5-year-old!

While I watched those 8 episodes, I played with my Go some more.
 My random scraps-- smaller than a fat quarter but not strips or or any other easy to use shape-- used to occupy both of these plastic bins... now they're down to one!
 And look at those stacks! 5" charms, 4.5" squares, 2.5" squares and hst's.... it's time to stop cutting and start sewing! Some of these fabrics I had been saving... I don't know for what! They were the ones too pretty to cut up. I kept reminding myself that they are being squandered living in a box, and deserve to become even more beautiful in a scrap quilt.
Matt Lauer agrees. He's feeling much better, and has even more energy (80 lbs of puppy running full tilt, and somehow the lamp hasn't been broken despite what seems to be a new morning ritual of knocking into it!). How can you say no to that face? He likes it when I'm not in my cave sewing, which is the other reason I love the Go since I can carry it out to the living room to be with the kids and not worry about them eating my projects or pins!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Pay it forward! Not just my motto


Kind of like if someone opens a door for you while you're out, open a door for someone else. Or if your coupon is expiring but you're not sing it in the grocery, leave it by that item so someone who needs it will use it. 

BUT this one is HANDMADE!!!! Ooooo, how fun!

Here is how it works:

I promise to send something handmade to the FIRST 5 people who leave a comment here. 

However, to be eligible, you must repost this message, offering something handmade to 5 other people. 

The rules are that it must be handmade by you, and it must be sent to your 5 giftees sometime in 2011. (That's a whole year to make and mail...easy peasy).
I know this is going all over FB right now, too, but most of my Facebook friends are not crafty. So leave me a comment, repost the Pay It Forward and commit to gifting your first 5 commenters.

Here we go!


When you look at this corner....
and this one...
 it looks like I've got my sewing room organized. But in between them, there is THIS:
But, the dresser is mostly empty- just moved it in there today. Some of this pile should get stored in there... but the rest? I don't know where to put it!!! I feel like I haven't been efficient with use of closet space, so I might be spending as much time rearranging as sewing for the next couple days... but at least I made some progress today!!!

And I'm up to 16 blocks done for RRCB. Now if only I could find motivation to finish those darn neutral string blocks... the problem is their neutral. I could probably have them done in a couple hours if they were PINK or YELLOW or pretty much any COLOR!!!


Today, all I can think about is how I never would have made the Quiltville mystery quilt if I had known what I was in for. So, I am grateful that it was a mystery, because I have since begun to appreciate small pieces that before seemed tedious, and I think it has helped with some control issues well, yes, control issues.

Don't these blocks look pretty, though? I know some others who used a yellow were not happy, and more weren't happy with their overall contrast, but I love how the yellow glows! I still need to catch up on the string blocks... I only have 20 done, so I still to make 60 and then cut them and resew into the neutral blocks.... so, I hope to have this done in time for the fair! I want to enter it into the fair- that is, if our fair does quilts. Our county is pretty small (30,000- that's 20,000 smaller than the last city I lived in!), and there isn't a website for the fair or anything, just dates in June.... so hopefully they actually have a whole fair, not just livestock. Either way, June is my goal for finishing the whole thing. And if I love it enough AND get a job soon, I'll pay to have it quilted by someone with a better setup than mine so that it will be worthy of being our guest bedroom comforter. :)

I'm setting deadlines for all new projects this year. June for the Mystery quilt, since no matter what happens I should be able to make that goal. Anything else that I start will be assigned a deadline so that I don't make more UFOs. I'm not going to set a finish goal for my UFOs, I'm setting a cap on the number I can have! Which, currently, is however many I have. No more can be added! The theory is that some of these current UFOs will be more appealing if I'm not forcing myself to work on them...

Happy Friday!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Dog update

Yay, our dog just has round worms! Still disgusting, but he'll be all right soon.... and let's hope his lovely smells will be gone, too! And I got a nap. And I'm about to go sew something... not sure what today, but something. Doesn't matter, it's turning into a better day.



It's been a long day already. Matt woke us up  at 4 am throwing up, and to make matters worse, there was some sort of worm in it. We both know this is NOT GOOD AT ALL. I love that darn puppy so much, even when he's being destructive. Tim took him down to the vet just now, so hopefully they can figure out what kind of worms he has and deal with it before it's too late.... and work out a payment plan for us since this probably won't be cheap and we're still dealing with other unexpected expenses.

At least my foot was cleared. The injuries are minor this time, just really annoying.

I need to go get some sewing done and settle down... worrying won't help anything, but it's much easier to say that than to stop worrying. I hope my big baby is ok....

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Another hexie caddy? Are you crazy?

A few weeks ago...

Me, in a text: Look, I finally finished my pincushion! Can you believe this took 7.5 hours? But isn't it cool? I can put my scissors and things int he center.

no response.... until the next morning...

Him: I like your pen holder. Will you make me one?

Me: What pen holder?

Him: The picture you sent last night.

Me: It's not a pen holder. It's a pincushion. And it took 7.5 hours to stitch by hand. So no.

Him: Please? I love you, Wif!

Fast forward to Sunday...

I said I would never make another one of these... but what can you do when your husband asks nicely and bats his giant blue eyes? He loves his pincushion pen holder. It's now sitting on his desk, which we inherited from my dad. Mom wants to turn his old office into a craft room, so we got the desk. You should see my husband sitting at it- he's never had a proper desk before, so he sits there like he's surveying a domain and all I can do is imagine a paper crown perched on his head to match the expression.

Making the pincushion pen holder wasn't so bad this time- I machine pieced the outside pieces this time which worked much better for me. I made this one in 3 hours- A much quicker finish! We downloaded the free month trial of Netflix, so while Tim went to work, I watched Season 6 of The Office as I worked on the caddy.

I've decided today is a two pot of coffee day. We went out to dinner with our friends, the Devines, last night, and ended up being gone until 1:30!!! I haven't been out that late since before we got married! But it was a very fun evening. Dinner at Outback, then we all watched a movie at their house... they have two girls, one 4, the other 4 months, and the older girl absolutely LOVES me. She latches on when i get their, and practically had to be pried off to go to bed last night. She's a stitch. It also made for some confusion to the waitress as to who belonged to whom.... I carried her in, followed by her dad, then her mom had the little baby, then Tim came in last since he had held the outside door for everyone, and then we all shuffled to be back with our spouses and my 4yr-old BFF Makayla made a human bridge between both couples, holding my hand and her dad's.

Here's to good friends, and good times. But for now... Nap time!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Goodbye, 2010

Not my normal color scheme, but sometimes it's fun to color inside the lines for once!
The last project finished in 2010- I got this done at 11:30 last night! I had to work on something in order to actually stay up until the ball dropped. I very nearly fell asleep sewing! It's definitely not professional quilting, but  the only home it will ever be in is MINE. This grew out of the snap sack from the shop hop I did with my MIL... just because they give you a pattern doesn't mean you have to follow it to a T!!!

2010 was the Year in Transition. It was the second year in a row where it felt like I spent most of my time waiting. Waiting for Tim to get home, then waiting to hear if he got the job, then waiting to find out about the house, then waiting to move... now we're here, he's employed, I'm working on bringing in $ but for now a very happy housewife. No more waiting! Not even for the reveal of the blocks for the Bonnie Hunter mystery:

I'm still not done with all the part, but I couldn't resist assembling a few blocks! Plus, it's easier to count those HSTs by 20! I love these blocks. Love, love love them! Especially the yellow!

So, 2011.... The year of ??? We shall see!