Showing posts from 2009

Happy New Year

A happy and prosperous year ahead, I hope, for all--parts of 09 were not so hot but other parts were good. In that regard, I am guessing that makes it like most years and differ only in that you are more likely to recall the recent events.

I took down the Christmas decorations yesterday but left the snow/winter things out for this coming month. It perks up the house a bit but I hope I remember where I put them come December. They probably won't go back in the Christmas storage boxes where they SHOULD belong. I hope to save myself from the treasure hunt I did this year, LOL.

Be Attitudes from last year

Pictures on the shelf were drawn by my friend Janet and set as Christmas cards. The mitten was added as a gift tag for Christmas gift I was given years ago. I made the snowman several years ago. The Quiltmaker's wallhanging is labeled "04" but I just sewed the sleeve on this morning. Actually I decided this morning as I stitched that one on that I am going to star…

Daisy Chain progress

Here is my progress so far on the Daisy Chain project. Blocks laid out and awaiting sashing. I am going to veer off in my own direction from the pattern for the actual joining but that's my choice. Strip piecing the sashing bits is next.

Christmas tree and decorations are down excepting a couple of Santa wall hangings. Skyler kept trying to chew on the tree so it is time. A little bread baking this morning so it has been a busy day already. I have a feeling I will still be sashing and joining rows for a day or two more.

48 blocks and more

Norma and I have wanted to sew our version of Atkinson Designs Daisy Chain for some time. When she knew that she was going to be on holiday between Christmas and New Year's we planned on getting started. But first, she needed to prep fabric and do some cutting. In the meantime, I got busy sewing the Sisterhood Gratitude top that I had cut out recently---my Saturday project, LOL. It still needs borders--a pretty blue inner border and the outer border is that patchwork fabric you see in 6 of the pieced blocks in the picture below.

Sunday after I had lunch out of the way, we got our sewing machines revved up. Here's my project box. I am using 30 repros (I'm working in series, ha!) If you look at the pattern leaflet, the greens and pinks form little flowers in the diagonal chains. Well, in my version the blue-green/aqua fabric you see is my green in the design and the red dot takes the place of the pink. My yellow for the flower in the chain has both the aqua and re…

Merry Christmas!

I hope that you have a wonderful holiday with family and friends!

It will be a quiet day here, as most holidays are, with just DJ and I and our fuzzy little "boy" Skyler. The weather report looks to be a little forbidding between here and IL where most of our family is located. We didn't plan on going back anyway---normally we wait till May or June if we are going. My family had "Christmas in July" earlier this year though not everyone could be there. Actually the wind and rain is picking up since I sat down to write this post.

I have been busy this past week though don't have much to show for it. Hand quilting continues on my FAB challenge quilt though I have the body of the quilt done and marked the borders yesterday. My favorite quilt hoop bit the dust this past week though so I am in the market for its replacement----a 14 inch round that I had since 88. DJ tried to re-glue the join but it is not going to hold. :-( I need the half hoop now for th…

looking ahead

I have nothing to show, really, for a week's worth of time in the sewing room, LOL.

I have been in quilting mode again. 1 comfort quilt is done for my quilting pals' guild bee and picked up but I didn't snap a picture of it though the cable I did in the border sections looked pretty good. 2 WTIL donation quilts are also done though someone else will do the binding down the line----you'll see pictures of them down the line when posed for their "official portrait."

I have two more to go as pictured above with the backing side out. One is a larger version of one I just finished-- 24 blocks of 16 patch HST blocks sashed and cornerstoned provided by Linda C. After doing the 16 block version, I have the SID quilting path down on that pattern! The other one you see folded up was made by Aline's granddaughter who has been so sweet to think of the kids and provide some tops to the group. I know her grandmother is quite happy to have her follow in the sewing…

finished to flimsy

I had set a goal to get the blocks of my strip twist out of the sack they were in and to flimsy by the evening of December 5th. I didn't make it. By the time I had put up the Christmas decoration one day last week, I sure didn't feel like sewing that evening though the quilt was about half done at that point. What difference did one day make anyway---it was still the weekend and a self imposed goal.

The pattern was designed by Gudrun Erla of G. E. Designs. It is set up for jelly roll using a partial seam technique. It is the project we chose to do at the FAB + 2 retreat this past August. Because I needed to make a ton more blocks and had other obligations, I was lagging behind.

All of our quilts have all turned out so differently! You can see Norma's version HERE. She and I both went with a fall type theme. Cher's version can be seen HERE. While it is not Cher's usual palette, she had pulled fabrics from her stash and the quilt was gifted for someone w…

I promised more pics

...........and here they are! I do love show and tell.

First up, Lois' Flying Geese in the Cabin. She pieced most of this in a class with Trudie Hughes at her then local quilt shop we were guessing in the late 80's/ early 90's. She said that the colors never did go in her home and after antiquing for a long time, she wasn't going to put the borders on it at this stage of the game. She was donating it. I quilted it for her---in the ditch so it looks as pretty on the back as the front. I thought I posted this before but the batting was sticking out or we had it on the pinning table. This is it's "official portrait" shot for our photo albums and personal copies.

Next up, Lois peeking out above her quilt with machine embroidered mouse squares. I had to clear the girls out to get the picture as they were drawn like moths to the motifs, LOL. She used a large cat print for the backing and the block is Puss in the Corner. Appropriate, I thought.

Next u…

challenge quilts, edited

The Belles Christmas party was yesterday. This year we opted for a stress free celebration in which no one had to clean or decorate their home. No one had to make a potluck dish either as we had arranged for a large table at Olive Garden. Order what you want and we would go back to the meeting place for dessert, coffee and Show and Tell.

We always do the year's challenge fabric reveal at the party. Some are still in the planning or sewing stages including my bonus quilt from the leftovers. Come to think of it, I still have a bonus one from Marilyn's leftovers from LAST year's to make. I had to laugh though---one of participants asked if I had fabric for 2010 yet. (I do but I had left it home. ) One of the Belles' said, aghast, "Nooooo, not yet---I am not done with this years!" Like I would be piling on more---I try not to do that, ever. I did describe what it looked like though to whet their appetite and will pass it out in a month or two.

Thanks ag…

A finish

Okay, the challenge top is done about an hour ago. I don't know how successful I was with this one. Now that I look at it, that red piece looks too bright in the picture but in person not so much. Maybe because the plaid reading more as a dull red from a distance? Actually I had put more of the plaid piece in there first and ripped it off as there was not enough contrast and now I am second guessing that decision.

Some of the fabric is from my stash, others were donated so it has found a new home. SOOO I will say what Pam says---IIWII and done is a good thing since the deadline was a week away. Only thing left is the binding seaming. I should have pics of the other Belles efforts next week and will post.

Skyler just popped up here as I loaded pics to the computer. Don't ask me what he wants---a mouse and a squishy toy are sitting there but he wants neither of them. A puff ball instead or more pets?? Funny boy!

Jane called this morning with an invitation to join her an…

sometimes just sewng IS the challenge

The sum total of my sewing this week once I finished up the Be Attitudes quiltlets? One seam, just now on a large HST. Some weeks, as I said the title, just sewing can be the challenge.

See that lunch box fabric? What would you do with it if you had a yard cut? It is an older Moda print from 3 Sisters called "Mrs. Nelsons' 2nd Grade" It was given to the group by a WTIL list friend from KY. Kitty gave us enough challenge fabric at one time to take care of 4 years worth of annual challenge. I handed yard cuts of it out month's ago to those who wanted to participate but yet, this is the first year I haven't had a clear cut idea of what I wanted to do. I have looked at my pattern collection, magazine clippings, online for inspiration for this and for the FABS challenge too. For weeks I have basically waffled between two ideas. We like to share the finished tops at our Christmas party meaning I have less than two weeks to get it done. Make a decision alre…


I had requests for both of the recipes that I used yesterday----so I'll post them here

so good still warm from the oven with melt-y chocolate.
serves 8---very rich so you will want small slices

2 eggs
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chips (I used semi-sweet)
1 cup pecans or walnuts (I used walnuts)
1- 9 inch deep dish pie shell---thaw it for 15 minutes, prick it, place on a baking sheet and
pre-bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes

Lower the oven temp to 350 after the pie shell is baked

Beat eggs until foamy in a large mixing bowl.

Add sugars, softened butter and vanilla. Beat until smooth. (Speed 4 with the kitchenaid with flat beater)

Add flour and salt and mix until well combined.

Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Spread into the pie shell. Place pie pan on a baking sheet and back 55-60 minutes until the top is puffed a bit and golden brown. Cool…

if it looks like bread................

it must BE bread, LOL. Ignore the chunk the cook cut off for quality control purposes. (I think it needed a bit more salt--tastes a little bland in spite of the herb and garlic mixed in)

After spending a couple days reading the kitchenaid forums and printing off recipes and filing them along with my previously acquired yeast bread/quick breads I finally fired the mixer up. Big old 3 inch ring binder is full!

I ran into one of the Belles at the store yesterday. Jane suggested maybe we could do soup and cornbread for lunch at our meeting on Tuesday rather than head out to a nearby restaurant for "more chicken salad". Yeah, it's good but she wanted something different for a change. I asked her which one did she want me to fix--the bread or the soup? She chose soup, LOL. I added buttermilk and Martha White cornbread mix to the grocery list. I have all the ingredients measured out and along with the utensils so I can just mix that up quick and bake i…

A finish

Woohoo! All done with the "Be Attitudes" series when I took the last binding stitches on December's and sewed on a little pompom instead of a button. I had them on hand so why not?

I think today will be a hand quilting day, another block on the FAB friendship quilt is the goal. Next up to sew will be to get my queen sized Strip Twist blocks into a flimsy--last seenHERE a month ago. They have been sacked up in stacks waiting for me. Next up to cut, my Bama Belles challenge quilt though I best decide what pattern first! I'm waffling between two ideas but have compatible fabrics pulled so that's a start anyway.

Hope you all have a great day in whatever you chose to do-----

checking in

Well, I got the binding finished on the November "Be Attitudes" quiltlet and it is up on the living room wall. Most of the October one is done, minus one long side and the buttons that will be added to the dog's cute face. I'll post the October and December blocks when both are done.

I've been busy though with other stuff around the house. On
Tuesday evening, late and in the pouring rain the UPS fellow delivered my new KitchenAid mixer. I didn't realize just how tall these thing was going to be! And at first, I was not sure that I wanted it up on the cabinet top either. It is way too big to fit the spot that used to house the Oster Kitchen Center as well but there was sure a lot of nice storage room for the cookie sheets, muffin tins, wire racks and such!

Wednesday I set about to make room in the cabinets and found a spot by moving some things around. You just know that led to some serial cleaning, don't you? Yep, one cabinet affected three more an…

Tuesday check-in---10 n 10 plans

So far Ms. Ida has dropped 2.5 inches of rain in our rain gauge here in the NE central part of Alabama. It is still pouring and breezy so who knows what the final tally will be for this rain event? (ed: note---we topped out at 5 inches plus. The rain gauge filled but DJ was not going out in the pouring rain to empty it ) Last I heard we were 10 inches over our annual average rainfall totals and the ground is already saturated. In fact, we went through a 9 day stretch without any rain --first time since a period in late June/early July!

I canceled our quilt meeting till next week as there we were in a flash flood watch--no one needed to be out slopping around in that mess today. Also I had woke up for the 2nd day in a row of almost like migraine-like headache. I'm the one with the key to let us into the fellowship hall so I figured it would be best to just head any of the regulars off at the pass. Skyler and I went back to bed for a couple hours and I feel a bit better now.


WIP Weds

Time for another addition of WIP Weds. What's up for today? Machine button hole applique around the latest and last prepped "Be Attitudes" quiltlets, shown in the "before" stage. "Be Forgiving" for October, "Be Grateful" for November and "Be Joyful" for December. Only a little behind here but that is what happens when I spend a goodly amount of time machine quilting. I am thinking I will quilt the November one first. If things get set aside a bit---that happens around here, a lot--then at least that one should be finished for hanging and decorating this month.

I have so enjoyed having these little projects to look forward to even though I have been playing catch up and working forward the latter half of the year.

I am thinking that perhaps my next year's fun project will be to work up the Amy Bradley "Seasonal Quilter" series which I have owned for a couple of years. Not only is the Quilt Diva character cute …

quilt meeting

In my last post I promised some pics of some of the turned in quilts or some in progress. These are all tops that Lois made.

This one is called "Four-in-Nine-Patch Zigzag" designed by Barbara Douglas and shown in the October 09 issue of Quilter's World. It uses 2 1/2 inch strips or cut squares.

Lois is probably our "Queen of Scraps" though she does some lovely planned quilts as well. Linda C came in with a bag full of scraps and handed it to Lois so bits and pieces of those will be turning up before long. Really it is kind of fun to be pinning and spot something that you know was a backing trim away at one point, LOL. "I remember that one--and this one!" moments.

Next up is Lois' version of Disappearing Nine Patch. It was a block of the month choice at the JOY guild last year and the suggestion was to use a center on the block.

Lois made a semi-planned quilt with the pattern using the same red throughout the top. The twist to the usual versio…

WIP Weds

So it's Wednesday again. What am I working on? Yesterday the quilt group met and I pulled out the 3-D bow tie blocks I had started two weeks ago. I had quite a pile going and sewed on the center seams while at the meeting and kept going once I was home. I had them sorted out by color groupings this morning and ready to press.

I had originally thought about using an on-point set and would have used 35 blocks for that but I thought that the bright yellow gold background might be a little too much of a good thing. I decided to go with either a zigzag set or block to block instead and probably no borders so a 7 x 9 set should work. I needed just a few more blocks to get to that block total and whipped those up fairly quickly. BUT back in the sack with it for now as I have a few other things I would like to accomplish in the next week or so. Swap out the sewing machines---again.

This picture shows what I was REALLY doing this morning. I came home from the meeting with 8 finish…

another addition of WIP Weds

Yep, another week has flown around again. Earlier in the day I had errands to run and things to do around the house. DJ spent some time calling to set up appointments for more estimates about the termite treatment. Return phone calls, a couple came out today but this way he can make a more informed decision about what we need to do.

Skyler spent a good bit of his time on the perch enjoying the view out front. DJ eliminated one of the despised holly bushes outside the sewing room window so we have lots of good light coming in. Since he was occupied and apt to stay off my quilting surface, I pulled out my FAB friendship block quilt.

The pieced blocks are quilted. Alternating blocks and setting triangles are marked for hand quilting. I am not sure what I want to do in the borders, if anything, so I went ahead and put the binding on. If the Stencil Company has something similar to the motif but for borders I may go for it. I plan on hanging this above my bed and sewed half of a sle…

WIP Thursday

I should be machine quilting but...........

These3-D bow tie blocks are more to my liking at the moment. Just some simple mindless sewing until I have to finish up the center seams. The shoe box sized container is full of 3 1/2 inch squares gleaned from my scrap bags. I don't know if I want 24 blocks for an on point set or 35 for straight set but either way a quilt -- more like, quilts, plural--- is hiding in that container. I'll set the whole deal aside till our next meeting date soon enough and the Jem will go back to the car trunk. In the meantime, just for today, I am enjoying these bright colors on a grim, rainy day and keep playing.

And speaking of rain, we heard on the news in early October that we had already reached our annual rainfall totals with three months to go. I don't know how much we have exceeded that total but it seems like it has been raining or looking like it might for weeks now.

Related to all the wet ground, we have found out that there is a termi…

meeting day

Today was our quilt meeting day. Since I have been quilting all last week, I personally do not have any quilts to share but our friend Lois did. I told her as I snapped pictures that here was some "blog fodder", LOL.

Tennessee Waltz--Eleanor Burns pattern--a little girl somewhere is going to adore this one

Traditional pattern--Squares Within Squares. She put lizards at center and it has a fun backing---a boy should love this one.

I think this one is pretty cool and made a little dent in her 2 1/2 inch squares stash. Some of the fabrics in here might be from Linda C or that might be the top that she was preparing to pin?? It is almost a joke between the two of them. Linda gave up on her scraps too soon if Lois whips them up into something interesting later.

I had intended to sew some 3-D bowtie blocks at the meeting today but when I opened up the sewing machine carrier I realized that I had left the open toed foot on my Jem rather than the 1/4 inch foot. The feet, bobbin…

WIP Weds

I had been busy stitching up Strip Twist blocks over the weekend and made 51 more for a total of 144-8 inch finished blocks. I will put 12 of them on the back to expand the backing surface area. Having reached that goal, I set these aside so I could begin machine quilting some of the tops in the donation quilt pile.

Skyler doesn't seem to mind that this is not quilted yet and is giving it the kitty approval test for softness and cuddle-ability. I took this picture this morning and he is back on it now--12 hrs later, LOL.

DJ and I had a project to do in the kitchen this morning. We have a vaulted ceiling in the kitchen so the space above our cabinets is open. The shelving paper needed to be replaced as we had not done that since we moved in 12 yrs ago. Skyler runs around up there and on the pass through ledge so we knew it needed to be cleaned up. He climbed up on the step stool and I was the ground girl-gopher. Of course, Mr. Nosy had to climb up atop the pass through the c…