Thursday, December 16, 2010


So the truth is, I haven't been here for a long while.  I've been really busy.  I've started a[nother] new hobby - weaving.  I'm loving it.  I have so much to learn, but I like it a lot more than anything else I've done recently (the last few years at least).

So this is my first project (above).  It is a table runner, made from Sugar & Cream cotton.  It turned out pretty well.

This (below) is my second project. These are mug rugs....another learning process.  Again, 100% cotton.

Here is my third project.   Not happy with it - too many mistakes.  Don't weave when I'm tired is the lesson learned from this one.....

Here is my last project.  It turned out VERY well and I like the way it looks.  Again, 100% cotton (I have a lot of the cotton to use up and practice on) and perfect for the holiday.

So now I'm working on another project which isn't looking the way I thought it would when I was putting the yarn on the, we'll see.....learning from my mistakes seems to be how I learn.  I do have 2 books, planning on getting another after the holidays.....

Haven't done any quilting, but I did do some sewing.  I had bought some 4" foam, a large slab of it, to put in the back seat for the dogs.  The foam was a bit wide (front to back) for the seat, so I sliced off enough to split that piece in half, and add to each side, which then made the piece long enough for the seat, and the right width front to back.  Yay!  I covered it with foam, then I made a pillow case out of some blue fabric I had.  I pulled a red zipper out that I've had forever and never used for anything else.  I put the zipper in (couldn't find my zipper foot) and it works great.  I have it in the back seat for the dogs.  Evan LOVES it as he can sit with his harness on that keeps him from being a flying object, and he can see out the front window, which is when he's happiest in the car.  Gabbi doesn't feel the motion or bumps so much and she likes it a lot too.....well, as much as she can while she's in the car which she doesn't seem to hate, but it's not a favorite thing to do either.

With Christmas coming, and my DD due to have her baby next Tuesday (the 21st), I'm really busy and haven't had time to do some of the things I really want to get done.   But, there is an entire new year ahead of me, and I plan on making the best of it that I can.  I have no great expectations.  My new mantra is to enjoy the moment and what I'm doing, when I'm doing it.  I tend to be doing one thing and thinking I could/should be doing something else.  So if that's the way I feel, then I go do the something else instead of beating myself up.

Many things have changed for me over the last year.  I am looking at everything as a learning process.  I know that I am who I am, and the way I want to be.  I'm not going to beat myself up, let others beat me up, or tell me how wrong I am because I'm busy, or doing what I love to do, or because I have such a variety of things going on.  My life is exactly how I want it to be right now.  For that, I'm ever so greatful.  Of course, a little more time to do everything I want to do would be nice....but that's just poor management on MY part! LOL  Just another thing to try to improve on.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A huge break....

That is what I've been on ~ from sewing, from Blogging.  I have been in one of those times where I'm not sure what I want to do.
I did crochet a scarf. I loved it so much (really soft yarn) that I went and got another ball (because it doesn't go very far) and I made a headband to go with it.  I'll take photos and post them.

I finished my purple knitted sweater. I'm not thrilled with it.  It is boxy, and heavy, and short sleeved ~ there is just something about a sweater - I think if it's a heavy sweater, it should be long sleeved.  Whatever.  Anyway, I don't like the sleeves and the collar.  I'm seriously thinking of taking those apart and crocheting something and hoping it comes out looking nicer (and fitting better).  The left sleeve opening is tight and I don't like that.

I started a scarf [knit] that I haven't finished.  It's for the donation box that the local knit shop has.  They have kits you get - you can crochet or knit - and the scarves go to the abused women's shelter.  I need to finish that.

This weekend is the baby shower for my daughter.  She is due in Dec with our first (and probably only) grandchild.  It's going to be a girl.  At least, that's what they were told....I sure hope it is since everything we've gone with till now is pink!  I'm excited, but I'm also worried about my daughter and how this is going to change her life.  She doesn't do change well.  I also worry about her health. 

Sewing ~~~ well, I haven't felt like sewing one bit.  I have projects waiting for me upstairs.  I really do NOT feel like going up and doing any of them.  I needed a break.  I felt pressured to sew for a long time and I started resenting it.  I hate piecing (for quilting) so I've decided that if I quilt, it won't have a lot of piecing in it.  I love the actual free motion quilting.  But I'm pretty sure quilting will just be something I do now and then.  It's not my passion.  It's not like I can't wait to get to the sewing machine and create.

I do feel a need to create.  I don't know why I haven't found the one thing I can be passionate about as far as finding that perfect craft - the one I need to do upon waking every morning.  The one that will keep me from wanting to escape the house and stay out as long as I can.   Hmmm, wonder why I can't seem to find THE craft for myself?  I have dabbled in SO many crafts. 

So on that note, I'm about to try another craft......I have ordered a Rigid Heddle Loom.  It should arrive some time in the next day or 2.  I won't get to do much with it, as I'm preparing for the shower on Saturday.  Just too many things to do between now and then.  I just hope that after investing in this, it's something I'll continue to do......

I'm hoping that things will settle down for me once the shower is over.  But of course, then comes Thanksgiving, then the baby is due in Dec, then Christmas, New Years,  So much going on! 

This year is one of the first in a long time, that I feel like decorating for Christmas.  Which is really strange because it's going to be the first year that we won't have family here at our house for the holiday.  Hmmm.  I do feel that in the past, it was all about the pressure of buying and making sure that everything was perfect.  But this year, I feel we're being blessed in another way, and I'm not going to worry about the gifts or the amount of presenst under the tree.  I'm going to decorate and enjoy the season.  I do wish my house was a little bigger so I could put more things out.  That's one thing about this house - not a lot of places to put pretty things.  But that's ok - I love my house, I love our farm, and I love my critters.

Ok, well, I guess that's enough for now.  I just wanted to check in and post a blog since I'd disappeared for so long.  It's lunch time and I have many things I want to get done this afternoon.  Tomorrow I'm supposed to go to the dog trainer's and we are going to do Rally - she's having an open house and Rally course set up so everyone can give it a try.

On Friday I have agility with Evan.  He is loving it and so am I.  It's FUN.  Of course, with the weather getting colder, I don't know how much fun we'll  But I am going to stick with this because I am feeling passionate with it.

K, off I go. I hope anyone who cares to read this is having a wonderful day and is enjoying whatever their passion is in life!  :-)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Crazy Thursday

Today is Crazy Thursday for me.  I'm posting now, not much interesting, just so I can get it done, in case I don't get back later today.
I have a huge list of things to do.  Started one already - had to print something off so I can finish that little project.  
I have to do two more invites to the baby shower.  Pics to come soon.
I will also be starting to work on the house today.  I am determined not to spend the entire beautiful weekend inside cleaning...but I will be opening the windows and enjoying the Fall weather.  Sposed to be absolutely beautiful for the next few days, and I'm going to take advantage of it!
I'll be back, I hope, with the photos of the goodies my good friend Rita brought me from Australia.  :-)
So off I go.  Wish me luck on getting all my stuff done!  Wheeeeeeeeeeeee

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Finished projects!

Okie dokie!  I finally have 2 finished projects I can crow about!  :-)
First, the pinwheel quilt that was "easy" to do, although once the pinwheels were done, sewing them together wasn't the easiest thing for me.  I am NOT good at piecing!  The quilt has a few bloopers, but they are fixed and it's not going anywhere.  Every project I do is a learning experience for me.  The yellow is actually a pretty gold.  Camera issues.  Operator issues. The quilt is laying over a chair. 

Here is the Noah's Ark Precious Moments quilt panel.

Above is the top.  
Below is the back.  I free motion quilted this on my home sewing machine.  Its a small, basic Janome.

This is what the panel looked like originally:

See that border?  I hated that border.  Don't ask why - I can't tell ya.  But I felt like it just wasn't right for this quilt.  That's when I decided to add my own border in colors I wanted, and I think the difference is huge.  You actually lose the print in the original but with what I added, you can actually appreciate the panel more.  I'm so glad I did it this way.  I will have to figure out what to do with the border I cut off.  I like the little animals.  I just didn't like them around the panel.  

Since I got those two projects done, when I was in town getting my massage, I stopped by the little quilt shop, and I found some really cute cuts of fabric.  I didn't buy yardage ~ I'd have liked to, but I didn't.  I just bought FQs and a couple of 1/3 yard cuts.  But I loved the fabrics and wanted them.  
Then, the owner tells me, the Moda charm packs I've been begging her to order, came in, but they are in the shop up in the other town.  Wow.  Ok.  So after my massage I had to come back to this town anyway to pick up my med refills.  I did that and drove downtown and went to the studio where she sells Berninas and art supplies, etc.  The young lady that works there is so fun.  So we went back and opened the shipping box, and viola!  There was all this wonderful fabric!  I wanted to take the entire box with me.  Alas, I couldn't afford it all.  I HAD to be good.  But I did get 2 of the charm packs I've been wanting.  Too bad I don't have the time to go make my brothers quilt that I wanted to make him.  His birthday is the 12th.  The quilt will be late.....oh well.  Considering I don't ever get anything from him for MY birthday (or any other holiday), I won't worry about it.  He's lucky he'll be getting a quilt from me!  I haven't decided what I'll do yet - since my pinwheels weren't done very well.  I may try the traditional method of pinwheels and see if they come out any better.  We'll see...........he may just get squares sewn together.  But I want to use the charm packs I have (I have 2 patterned packs and the 2 neutral packs).   I'll have to look thru my patterns and see if there is something easy there that I can make.

I have some other photos that I want to take, but haven't yet, to share here.  Today, I have to get Evan bathed and groomed to go volunteer at the hospital.  Since we've been going on walks in the park and to dog classes, he's not staying as clean as he used to.  So off to bathe him and get him cleaned up, then do a little housework, then get me cleaned up, then off to volunteer.  This day will fly by.

Thanks for visiting. 

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Day 3

My pinwheel and baby quilt are in the wash.  Praying they don't fall apart.  And colors don't run (have that sheet  you can put in there to catch running colors). And that the fabric from one quilt, doesn't stick to the other.  Taking chances. 

My Good Hubby T put the flannel sheets on the bed yesterday when he snuck around and changed the sheets and made the bed for me.  :-)  I LUV my flannel sheets.  I hate taking them off in summer.  I hate to get out of bed when the flannels are on also!

Cool this morning, in the 40s.  Was supposed to walk with friends and dogs, but decided not to go.  Will let the massage therapist fix the foot first, then will walk later in the week.  Or if not walk, at least practice with Evan on the agility stuff.

Turned the heat on for the first time this morning.  It was about 65 in the house.  brrrrrrrrrrr............

Finishing my tea, then off to get myself together to go out and do my errands before the massage.  One of which is to stop by the quilt shop down near the massage place.  Shouldn't be spending money, but, I love some of the Christmas fabrics that are out right now.  :-)  Since I missed out on some of the Autumn fabrics because I didn't buy them soon enough, I want to at least try to get out there and get some Christmas fabrics before they, too, are gone.

Off I go.......have a great day everyone!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Day 2

Ok, so don't pass out.  I know, two days in a row.  Hey, I'm trying!  :-)

Today I finished the panel quilt - I just finished hand sewing the binding, the not bias binding.  I decided I didn't have the patience to learn something new.  If the binding falls apart, I'll fix it.  It's all good.  I made my share of mistakes just trying to put the binding on.........from sewing the lengths of fabric together, to the last stitches, there were flubs.  But it's done.  I'm going to wash it and pray that it's ok........the colors don't run ( I have one of those sheets to catch the colors) and that it all comes out ok in the wash.........literally.

I don't know if I mentioned but I got the back of my sweater finsihed.  I've started the front.  But hands have been a bit bothered by the cold, damp can't knit as much as I'd like.  So I do a row or 2 and put it down and do other things, then try to pick it up again.

I have the invites for the baby shower mostly done - the ones that are on the list are all done.  I have a few extras that I'm going to do for special people that won't come, but I know they want an invite.  So I will work on those this week.

I also asked my friend Rita to help me out with the shower.  She said yes.  She's the closest thing I have to a sister here.  I'm so happy she said yes, it really means a lot to me.  It'll make it a lot easier to get things ready and to get this put together.  

I get to have my massage tomorrow.  That will be SO nice.  I need it.  I messed up my foot again on Saturday, but I know the massage therapist can fix it.

K, that's it for my thoughts for today.  Pics of the quilt (and the pinwheel quilt) when they are washed and dried.

Sunday, October 3, 2010


Wow, where does the time go???  I haven't been very good about blogging.  Or sewing!

I watched Julie & Julia, the movie, yesterday.  Direct t.v. is having a free weekend of STARZ.  I like that movie, but it made me feel really bad, because I envied Julie's determination to stick to both the cooking, and the blogging.

At any rate, I'm going to try harder to stick to posting every day, even if it's not long, and doesn't include pictures or sewing.  Although, I AM going to also try to get SOME sewing done EVERY day.  I like sewing, and I like getting projects done.

I have so many ideas of things I wanna do.  I need to GET WITH IT.

I did have a busy week last week. This week is also going to be busy.  That is, however, not a good excuse.  Its bad time-management.  Therefore, I'm capable of changing that.  And I will!

I went to the quilt expo in Dulles, and I was VERY disappionted.  The show in the Spring was much nicer, had many more good vendors, and more machines to play with.  This show had machines, small frames, and I got to show the longarms to hubby.  I just love them and really really want one of my own.  I'm going to start scrimping and saving, and try to figure out what I can sell to get money put away to put down on a long arm machine..........and hopefully finance the rest.   Tony thinks it's crazy, but, I think it could be an investment if I could get good at it.  Not that there aren't enough long arm quilters in this area............from what I understand there are quite a few.  But heck, why can't I be one too?

I did work on the baby quilt.  I cut the edge off the panel, and I actually felt FREE to move on and be more creative.  I can't believe how that border that came with it was holding me back.  

So I'd gotten some yellow and pink fabric.  I went back to get some more pink fabric which I probably didn't really need, but when I went to get it, I realized, it's not 100% cotton.  I really like to stick with cotton, but, hopefully this quilt will hold up and it won't matter.  I am going to try to do a bias binding which will be my first one.  I have a couple of magazines with good binding instructions in them, and plan on using them. So we'll see.........

I have so many Autumn projects I want to do.  I have my Mystery Quilt that needs to be continued, and I haven't even finished August, have done NONE of September, and here it is October!  Yikes.  Where DOES the time go???
Tomorrow I have the vet coming at one, then my friend is coming around 2 and we'll spend some time knitting.  Tuesday I have walking with the dogs in the park in the morning if no rain, then my massage in the afternoon (I can hardly wait for that!!!).   Weds I have volunteering in the afternoon at the hospital with Evan, and Thursday evening is dog class with Gabbi, and Friday morning, dog class with Evan.  Of course, I can do stuff in between.   I also have to clean - since my cousin and her hubby are coming from CA in 2 weeks.  Egads, I'm not nearly ready.  But I have a plan of attack, I just have to stick to that!

I'm outta here for now.


Thursday, September 16, 2010


Is volunteer day for Evan and I.  I started out this morning on the computer.  Moved to making breakie and lunch for my man who had to go South today for work.  Then I decided I was sick of how icky my washer looks, so I got the Windex (which I use to clean a LOT of things) and started scrubbing.  We have well water, which is very hard.  It leaves a lot of icky deposits.  I hate it.  Would love a water softener............maybe someday.

Got the washer much cleaner, and pulled out the book, which said to clean the inside, use a cup of bleach, a large load size of laundry detergent, and for good measure, I threw in some Arm & Hammer Baking soda which I get in the laundry isle (not to be mistaken for the A & H laundry detergent - this is JUST the baking soda in a larger box).  It worked really great.  Even tho we were told not to use too much bleach because of the septic system.  I know others that use bleach all the time and have no issues with their septic, soooooooo.....

Gabbi got a hair cut.  Unfortunately, I nicked her a couple of times.  UGH.  I really must start taking her to get groomed....I'm just cheap.  She also has an ear infection so she isn't feeling quite herself.  :-(  
Evan is keeping her company.  He's such a good dog.  :-)


I have been working on my knitting (sweater for me).
Isn't it pretty?  I love this purple.  100% cotton.  Yum.

 I've also been working on a baby blanket - crochet - for my new Granddaughter due in December.

  This is the edging.  I tried not to have any real holes that the baby can get a finger thru.

Well, its time for me to go get ready to volunteer.  Poor Gabbi will have to be here alone.  She'll be ok.

Off I go!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Catching up

So I'm trying to play catch up.  I have lots going on and sometimes, my brain gets overwhelmed, and then I shut down.  Trying really hard to avoid that.

Right now, my lip and nose and cheek are numb from being at the dentist.  I hope it wears off soon.  I had to eat so I had some mashed potatoes and made a can of brocolli & cheese soup.  Yum.  Good lunch.
So yeah, this is a week of catching up.  My pinwheel quilt is tied - I couldn't figure out a good quitling for it, so I tied it.  It looks good tied.  Not sure I did it correctly, but it's tied.  I will take it upstairs and I will cut the backing fabric, and wrap it around the front to bind it.  The back is fleece, so it'll have a little soft edging to it.  :-)  It'll be a nice lap quilt. But because I found a boo boo (my stitching didn't hold on one of the hst) it won't be going anywhere else.  It'll make a cozy lap quilt during winter.  

I'm working on my knitted sweater; it's going ok - I had to rip it out once because somehow, there were a bunch of holes in my knitting.  I'm trying to pay a lot of attention and do well with it.  Afterall, I want to wear it.  There is a little section of it that has stitches that look a little funny.  It'll be on the back so hopefully, not too noticeable.  I'm going to keep going with it and try to get it done. Knitting makes my thumb joints hurt.  Not fun.  So I can only do a little at a time and have to give myself a day or 2 in between if I over-do it.

I'm getting the edging on the baby blanket I'm crocheting, but I'm starting to think, I don't really LIKE the blanket.....sigh.  I think that I'm going to rip it out, and I'm going to use a smaller crochet hook than I used because I don't really like the way it feels/looks.  But, I may have second thoughts.  We'll see.  I'm not going to make any snap decisions.  LOL  

Lets see...oh, right.  I need to work on my mystery quilt from Kelly Anns Quilt Shop in Warrenton.  I haven't gone up to get Clue #3 yet.  I haven't finished Clue #2 but need to get #3 before the end of the month.  

I have the Precious Moments Noah's Ark quilt that I need to cut, then put a new border on, put the backing on and quilt it (still don't know exactly how I'm going to do it....).  I don't know if I want to use flannel in the sandwich or batting.  Still haven't decided that.

I have a couple of ideas for wall hangings....but haven't gotten to those yet. much to do.  Right now, my motivation is out the window!

I did order the pink Hershey Kisses from the Hershey store.  The tag on them say "Its A Girl!" and I have the 4 oz canning jars to put them in. I was going to use the 8 oz but they take too many kisses.  The next project will be to get the labels printed and on them - o wait - I have to BUY the labels first.  Staples in town only had the 1.5 inch and I want 2 or 2.5 inch labels.....and I didn't need the size package they had there anyway.  I don't know if I'm going to go to the city and try to find them or what.

I have the design for the invites done, and did a sample.  It is a pink Onesie with the invite printed on an iron on sheet, and then ironed onto the onesie, front and back.  Cute!  I got envelopes that this will fit into.  I have to do the directions to the complex on paper and then we're pinning the directions to the onesie.  A bit of a project.  But fun.  
So I have the jars, the candy on the way, the onesies all washed and dried (but now need ironing) and the invite almost perfected, will print those out and get them all (26) ironed on, and then I'll be done with that part of the shower planning.
O, and I also have the plates, cups and napkins for the shower.  Got all that at Dollar Tree - whoohoo!
Gotta get the plastic ware still....

I need to make a check list - not like me not to have one.

I think I need a nap.  I'm exhausted!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

God Bless America!

Today is the 9th anniversary of that fateful day that changed the lives of Americans.  As I sit here, I remember where I was, what I was doing, and that I wasn't scared so much as I was very very sad that in our lifetimes, this is what was going to be a moment that was never forgotten. 
A lot of people my age and older remember that day when JFK was shot down.  Or the day his brother Robert was shot down...........I vaguely remember that. 
But September 11, 2001 is a day I'll never forget.  I was bathing a dog in the vet clinic I worked at, with 2 people I got along with and respected.  We listened to the radio, we got chills running up and down our backbones.  We were worried about our loved ones.  We didn't have television there so we could not see what others were seeing as it was being reported.  We could only listen, make phone calls and try to ensure our loved ones were safe.  We went on with our lives because when you work somewhere that animals depend on you, you need to keep going. 
I hated seeing the sights of the people dying that day.  I tend to want to remember the people that were brave enough to try to help.
I also remember the silence in the skies in the days following.  The lack of flight.  No planes - none except occasionally the fighter pilots.  And when we heard those, we froze.  It was so strange....we lived centrally located to three major airports and it was not normal to not hear planes all the time.

I pray for all those that have lost family and friends on that horrible day nine years ago.  I pray that this country never goes through another awful day like that.  I know that our great country has survived some awful times.......wars, the stock market I also pray that we grow stronger as a country, a humanity that remembers that it all can be gone in one fateful moment.
I appreciate the freedom I have in this great country of ours.  I wish that all of us, every American, could pull together and realize that as one, we are stronger and braver, than as many that are scattered and fighting each other.

Today, I take my Therapy Dog Evan to the library for the kids to read to him.  We are there about an hour, and then I come home, leave the dogs behind and gather things that I need to take to our quarterly meeting for the Welcome Waggers Therapy Dogs.  We have a meeting and a lunch - today will be a picnic.  It's clear, cool, and the weather is very reminiscent of the weather nine years ago.  I pray that today will be a better day and that we will enjoy ourselves.  In the back of MY mind, I will be remembering those lost nine years ago. 

God Bless America!

Friday, September 10, 2010

What I've been up to....

This has been a really busy week for usual, it wasn't "supposed" to be.  Somehow, I manage to find reasons to leave the house.....not sure what that's about - maybe cuz the weather is so beautiful right now and I love to be out in it - except for the allergies!

At any rate, I have been trying to get some of my projects done.  Or started......

Here is something I bought yesterday - I saw them last week and I didn't get them then, but I love glass, and I couldn't resist..........

Its a quilted BALL canning jar.  No, I don't can.  But, I love the glass and I can use this for anything --- but there was a purpose for buying it.  I am going to fill them with silver and pink Hershey Kisses.  For my daughters baby shower......I will order the pink kisses online and  the little tag says "It's a Girl!"  The lid of this jar is silver.  It will match the silver kisses.  I will be buying round labels for the top and designing them myself.  I'll be adding a ribbon around the top too.  These will be thank you gifts.

Then there is this:

This is a blanket for the baby.  But it's huge - it covers me from chin to toe and I'm 5'2".  Maybe I should have cut it in half and made two.  But I like it.  This is the kind of blanket that will last a long time.  Its comfy - the back is fleece.  I just sewed straight lines up and down....and yes, there is a bumpy part on the back but I'm not ripping and resewing!  If this blanket gets the use that it's meant to, that won't matter after awhile.  I'm sick and tired of sewing and ripping and resewing.  So this is staying as is.  Its comfy and that's all that matters.  
This blanket above, is a companion fabric to the Noahs Ark Precious Moments panel I bought.....
This is the panel.   The panel that has given me fits for 3 months now.  I originally had the above companion fabric on the back of this panel, and batting in between.  I was hand quilting it, and I had the entire inside of the panel sewn.  Then I ripped it all out.  I hated it, the stitches on the back were horrible, and it just didn't look right.......

I've been carrying the panel here and there with me.  I had it on this design wall for a couple of weeks.  I knew I didn't like it as is.  The person that I ordered it from (online) had cut the edges of the panel really short and left me no seam allowance at all on the edges, so if I just quilted it, and put a border on it, I'd lose all the outside edges of those little blocks on the outside.  Also, the green and blue blocks on the border just were not making me happy.  I love the images, but I hate all the blue and that green, well, its bright.  When I got this, we didn't know if we were having a boy or girl grandchild.  We now know its a girl.  :-)  I hate all the blue in this.  Not crazy about the green.....and that little border just outside the panel and inside the big border?  Its a pale color with little butterflies.  I love butterflies, but that strip does NOTHING for the panel.  But, Jenn loves Noah's Ark and Precious Moments, and this is the ONLY panel I could find......its a 2009 fabric and it's nearly impossible to find at all even online at this point.

SO, it is what it is.....I've been waiting for it to talk to me.  It has ~ it's told me that it doesn't like being what it is here in the photo.

Yesterday, I went to Wal Mart.  Yeah, I know, don't pass out - I sometimes get fabric from WM.  It's ok.....really.  The fabric in this panel is nothing to write home about.  I could have gotten really expensive fabric from a quilt shop (sorry Kelly Ann) but, at the point I'm at with this thing, it was ok to just get what I got.  Anyway, back to the story..............
I took it to WM and a very nice lady there named Ruby helped me.  She did something I hadn't thought of doing....

She folded back the sides and top/bottom.  And whaddaya know - it looks SO much better!
This helped me to decide what I wanted to put with it.  I chose yellow.  I had already picked out the yellow.  But Ruby said, she thought it needed something else......I said I was going to put pink with it but had made lots of pink stuff and wasn't sure that I wanted more pink.  Also, there is VERY little pink in the panel - but there is just enough....Can YOU see it???  With the pink fabric next to it, it really makes the pink pop!  This panel NEEDS a darker color in it - darker yet still bright.  I love this pink with it, so pink it was.
I also like the yellow, so I got the yellow.  I'm thinking of making the pink and inside border and seeing how I like it.  I may use yellow for the outside border and I'm going to use it for the backing also.  I will put something in the middle....not sure if it will be a cotton batting, or something loftier.  I don't want this blanket to be too heavy.  
And I think I'll tie it.  I can't seem to decide on a way of quilting it that I'm happy with.  I broke my darning foot so I cannot FMQ till I get another foot.  If I FMQ, then it detracts from the design of the panel.  If I follow the lines in the panel then it becomes kind of wonky.  So I'm thinking of tying it.  But, that doesn't really sit well with me either.  I'm just really confused but hopefully, after I get the border(s) on and it looks different, maybe then I'll be able to figure out what to do from there on.  This is when I wish I had a machine that embroiders.  I can think of a few little designs that would look cute.

I also worked on my Mystery Quilt from Kelly Ann's - I'm behind tho.....this is July and part of August's work.....
I really need to get moving on it, and I need to get to Kelly Ann's to pick up September's clues.............I'm procrastinating.

These are the pieces close up.  It's really cute.  I can't wait to see what it will look like all put together.

Here is my bin with selvages.

I decided to put my chicken to use.  I'm tired of chasing my little tomato pin cushion around the table when I'm trying to take pins out or put them back when sewing and removing pins......she works really well and I like looking at her.  So she's staying as my pin cushion.  She didn't match anything in my dining room anyway!

Last but not least, here is my pinwheel quilt, on the floor near the closet.  I can't seem to get the quilting right on this, either.  I have 2 rows in there of straight stitching I need to rip out.  I've sewn and ripped 3 times on this quilt.  I'm frustrated.  Now I really think THIS quilt NEEDS to be tied and it will fit the quilt perfectly.  The backing is fleece on this one also.  Yummy chocolate fleece and so soft!  Not sure who it's for yet....its just a lap quilt.  Maybe a gift?

I have volunteering with Evan tomorrow - we have "Reading to the dogs" at the library in the morning, and then in the afternon there is a meeting/gathering/picnic at Mary's house for our quaraterly meeting.  Fun!  Lovely weather predicted.  Which reminds me, I have to make a macaroni salad.......better go check to see if I have the macaroni to make it or I'll have to run out and get some.  Sigh.

Off I go.  I feel guilty for not posting as regularly as all the people who blog every day.  I don't have an excuse.  I just get too busy - but I do find time to read everyone else's posts!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Blogs and Give Aways

I follow LOTs of blogs.  Probably too many!  I spend quite a bit of time reading because I get highly inspired by others to be more creative.
One of the blogs I follow is Here - Ryan is doing a give-away this week.  It includes an AccuQuilt Go! machine....  I so hope I win, but the chances are slim (I'm a poet and didn't know it!).  There are over 1150 comments left.  What are the chances I'll get randomly picked????  But, I can always play - ya can't win if you don't play, right?

Thanks Ryan - I love your blog whether I win or not!  :-)

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

BIZY BIZY BIZY.............

Wow, I've been BIZY!  I don't know where the time goes.....unfortunately, it's not bizy with sewing or crafting - yes, I've done to follow.  But just busy in general.

So, here are my latest creations:

This is just a flannel blanket - a receiving blanket.  Its soft, and large, so it will last a long time, and it should be useful.  Jenn liked it.  She wanted to steal it for herself.  I won't be surprised if I see her with it then!  

These are the diaper burp cloths I made.  I did a lot of searching online, and just did it from what I read.  One FQ will make 3 covers for the center of the diaper.  I didn't want to cover the entire diaper.  Only 3 of them are flannel - I told Jenn to see if the flannel ones work better flipped over as I've read that the diapers can be slippery and come slip off the clothing.  We'll see.  If you flip the flannel ones, and use the flannel against your body, and use the absorbent part of the diaper facing the baby, it can work too.  I told her if she finds that works, then I will put flannel on the backs of all of them.

Remember this blanket I made?  It has an applique in the corner.  The applique is one I printed on my new printer - the Epson Stylus NX125.  Theordora asked me if I have done anything with the printer - so far, I've done this applique, and I've done 3 quilt labels.  I haven't used any of the quilt labels yet....silly me didn't put anything on these little baby blankies. 

It's kind of difficult to tell from these photos (I'm usually taking them as I'm running out the door to deliver the stuff), but this applique came out beautiful.  It was easy to use.  I can't wait to see if it washes up ok.  I used a really HOT iron to set the colors, per the directions on the sheet I used.  Then, instead of running it under cold water, I used a cold water, wet washcloth, and I set that on it, removed it after it was damp, then ironed again to dry.  Hopefully, that worked!

SO...........the answer is YES, I love my new printer, and I can't wait to do some more on it.  When I'm just printing out regular stuff, I use my Kodak printer.  So I can't answer the questions about the ink quite yet - I don't know how fast I'll go thru the ink.  I do know that it says to use it often enough that the ink doesn't dry up and some people have had problems with the print heads on them.  But I've had that problem with my Kodak printer also.  So we'll see!

Here is the back of the blanket which I didn't take photos of before.  Again, I did it before running out the door to deliver it to Jenn.  I just did straight lines for the quilting, following the stripes on the front, and then folding the flannel over and doing the binding that way.  It was SEW easy.  :-)

I also worked on some invites for the baby shower, and then Jenn decided she didn't like them (for reasons I won't state here).  Just chalk it up to hormones. LOL  So I tried a few other designs and but they also didn't work.  She found some online that she likes.........I found some in the Hallmark store that I like better.  I will decide whether I will use the ones I want, or the ones she wants.  Heck, she shouldn't even be getting involved! LOL.  
Lets see........oh right - I spent hours and hours on the ripping out of the pinwheel quilt.  Since I'd used the machine and my machine quilting isn't that consistent, there were many tiny stitches.  I ended up buying 2 new rippers. The first one I bought, the metal ripping part was too large for the tiny stitches.  I went back and found a nice, ergonomic one, that really IS nice to use, and it has a much smaller ripper part, and that worked really well.  Yesterday, I was having some trouble with my foot, and I just wanted to sit with it up - and I finished the ripping - finally!  YIPPPEEE!  I had to wash the fleece I was using for backing because of all the threads sticking to it - because I had used spray baste and the threads were all sticking.  I haven't taken the fleece out of the dryer yet - when I took it out of the washer, it still had tons of tiny threads stuck to it.  I'm praying that they came off in the dryer.  If not, I'll have to pick those off.  So keep your fingers crossed for me!
OkHere is a link to her page.  There are five books in this series, and I've read three all ready!  I will be sad when there aren't any more....Sisters Choice; Endless Chain, and Touching Stars are the three I've read already - but I didn't read them in order.  LOL.  It's ok tho - you can pick any of them up and the books all refer to different characters, but, each book is about a different set of characters.  So you CAN read them out of order.  The other two books in the series are: Lovers Knot and Wedding Ring.

Besides all of this stuff, and my regular stuff like volunteering with Evan at the hospital a couple of times a month, I have been crocheting a baby blanket (of course), I'm starting to knit a sweater for myself (in beautiful purple cotton), and working on my Mystery Quilt from Kelly Ann's Quilt shop who also had a blog (gotta figure out how to get the link here....).

I also have had to deal with fleas.  Yeah.  I am not real good about using the Frontline on the dogs, and have NEVER used it on my cat, indoor cat that he is.  Well, I guess it's the heat this summer, but the fleas (along with the huge horse flies, the mosquitoes and whatever else you can think of) are out of control!  I found ONE flea on Evan.  I put the Frontline on him and haven't seen anything since.  That was 2 weeks ago.  I put some Frontline on little Gabbi too, and found one little tiny flea walking on her 2 days ago.  I took Leo to the vet because he has been vomiting more than normal, huge hairballs coming up, and he started having diarrhea.  So we get to the vet, and I take him out of his carrier, and what do I see?  Flea dirt (eggs) all over him!  I was embarrassed and devastated!  OMG.  I couldn't stop picking the eggs off him and I even got a couple of fleas off him.  I was SOOOOOOOO upset!  I got some Frontline for him too and a flea comb.  We came home and stripped the bedding and washed what could be, and vacuumed everything in the house.  I also spent a lot of time combing Leo out and getting everything off him I could.  I'm keeping him combed as that will help the hairball situation also.  I was given meds, one to settle his tummy, and another one to give him for the hairballs.  They are helping.  No more runny poo and no hairballs in a few days.  Thank goodness!  No sign of live fleas, and no eggs either.  I'm praying I got it all.  But I tell ya - we go outside to potty and when I get the dogs back in, I do a sweep of their bodies!

So other than is good.  I'm going to have a few days where there is nothing coming up - and I'm grateful.  I'll try not to make it so long in between blog posts next time.  I have lots to work on up in the sewing room.  I want to get busy on the Mystery Quilt - I'm running a month behind right now.  Once Sept arrives I need to go to KA's and get the Sept clue, then make it.

Thanks for reading my blog and as usual, comments are welcome.  Spammers, not so much!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Better sewing days....

Sunday and Monday were much better sewing (and ripping) days for me.
I started ripping out my pinwheel fmq and it's going along.  It strains my eyes - so I do an hour or 2 at night in front of t.v.  That's the only time I sit that still anyway.

I finished a baby blanket, and a receiving blanket.  They both turned out well.  So far, this is what I have:
This is just a piece of striped fabric that is a companion fabric to the Noahs Ark Precious Moments fabric I'm making the main quilt out of.  Jenn wanted a Precious Moments clip art applique on it.  After buying my new Epson printer from Target for $25.00 last week (a special deal they had), I can now print fabric on my printer.  
This is another blanket I made (both the above blanket and the one below are backed with flannel.  This one I quilted using FMQ and it came out pretty well. 

Hearts of course! 

Then there is just the flannel receiving blanket - its large, but that's ok - I think you get more use out of it the larger it is - the longer it lasts.

I still haven't attempted to learn how to thread or use the serger, so I just hemmed this and sewed it with a blind hem stitch. 

Now, I have 2 panels left to work with.  One, the main Noah's Ark panel, is the one I'm having a really difficult time deciding how I want to quilt the back to the front.  Jenn wants it to be backed in fleece - I don't know - I think that limits the use of the blanket for all year round.  I may use a very light weight batting, and just cotton for the backing.  Then, the quilting dilemma that I have with it - how do I quilt a panel with a picture on it?  Its too hard to follow the outline of the shapes on the panel.  Maybe, I'll just tie it.

I have another panel that I won't have a problem quilting I don't think.  I'm not as worried about that one, and I think I"ll use the fleece on that one.  Trying to go with my gut here on the right thing to do for the fabric and for the outcome I'm looking for - longevity and usefulness of the 2 main blankets.  The others are all just "extras."

I also got my mystery quilt started - I did the cutting on Saturday - the not so good karma day.  Yesterday I sewed month 1 of the instructions.  I'm hoping that today, and if not today, then tomorrow, I'll get month 2 done, because in another week, I'll have the month 3 instructions!  Yikes.  So I do want to get it done.  It's all those little 2 inch squares that are scaring me!  I don't like tiny - too easy to mess up.

Well, it's really dark out and I am pretty sure it is going to start raining any time now.  I am going to a movie with a friend today to see "Eat, Pray, Love" with Julia Roberts.  We are also going to the fabric store (yay!) so I will be finding the cotton or flannel I want for this other panel - and for the light weight batting....and any other good deals that I happen to find.  My friend isn't a sewer, but she is interested in felting and wants to find the wool felt to make a panel on.  Hopefully she'll find what she wants.

Also hoping to find time to go to Hancocks - only because I need more Best Press.  If they don't have any more of the unscented, I'll just use regular spray starch I guess.

Off for now, but I'll be back!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Bad Sewing Karma

Do you ever have a bad sewing day?  I had a bad sewing day today, and a bad cutting day also.
I should have just stayed out of my sewing room!  No, instead, I continue on a path of unfortunate and ugly mistakes....

I am now going to spend hours ripping stitches out of my pinwheel quilt (tried to FMQ it and hated it - but kept going - duh).

I also did a bunch of cutting for my mystery quilt........ugly!  My rotary cutter blade needed changing, then I messed up the order in which it should have gone back together, could NOT seem to get it right, kept trying to cut but knew it wasn't right....kept messing up fabric.  Boy, if I get that thing put together, it'll be a miracle.  We'll see how sewing the uneven edges of 2" squares goes.  Oye.

Off to bed - I can't even see straight from trying to rip stitches out.

Hopefully the new week will bring better sewing karma!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Pinwheel quilt

HI!  Well, I am progressing on my pinwheel quilt, and I finally have time to post a few pics of my journey.  So here we go!
Here is how I came up with my pinwheels:
Take 2 charms - they should be light/dark combos.

Place the 2 squares face to face:

Sew around all four sides of the square:

Now, you want to cut the square, corner to corner - top left to bottom right, and top right to bottom left - cut an X

Now, iron the triangles open - always to the dark side!

So now we have our 4 half square triangles!

Place the squares in the proper order - I had to keep looking at the first one I did so that I could get it right!

Time to sew.............when I first started, I was doing one at a time

But then I got the hang of it, and more confidence, and I started chaining them:

This is my little pile of chained pieces.

Gotta snip all the little pieces apart:

So now, you have the left side and right side, which must now be matched up and sewn together.  Notice - the corners with the 1/4 inch difference - outside corners are pointed, inside corners do NOT match on corners - this is how you know which sides to attach.

Finished pinwheel!  :-)

Many finished pinwheels!!!

I've sewn them all together.  They now have 2 borders on them - no photos - will get those photographed and up tomorrow.  Hopefully, tomorrow I will be able to get it sandwiched and quilted.  :-)

Hope you enjoyed my journey of the pinwheels. 
Any comments welcomed.