Saturday, December 29, 2012

Slow Sewing

The good news: I'm feeling better, though I'm still coughing.
The bad news: Hubby is still struggling with his crud.

The good news: I got an IPad for Christmas! (Thanks, hubby,)
The bad news: My computer died.

The good news: The computer is still under warranty and is now in the shop being repaired.
The bad news: I'm told there is a 50% chance I'll lose everything on it.

I choose to focus on the good news rather than the bad!

I'm sewing again - yay! But I 'm not pushing myself - it's slow sewing. Peaceful sewing. Relaxing sewing. Oh, and some slow sock knitting, too.

I haven't learned how to put a photo on the blog with my IPad yet - maybe I'll figure that out today.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Getting Over Pneumonia...

Ahhh, feeling much better!  Of course, this week hubby and Daughter 2 both got sick, but both are on the mend, too.  Pneumonia is certainly not fun!  Glad it's gone just in time for Christmas.

I took a shot of the Gee's Bend quilt in our backyard before I packed it up.  One last look....

In non quilty news, I've always wanted to learn how to knit socks.  (Why?  I don't know! I'm not even a knitter!)  So last week I signed up for a class on Craftsy.  At first I was all thumbs!  I mean, really, 5 knitting needles at once??!!

But I finally started getting the hang of it....

and before I knew it, I had a sock toe!  I still have a long way to go - must still learn how to do the heel.

I highly recommend the Craftsy classes.  They have knitting, crochet, Tunisian crochet, quilting, jewelry making, bread making, etc., etc.  And many of their classes are on sale, but you'd better hurry because the sale ends today.

Here's a little discovery I made recently at the grocery store - it REALLY helped me survive the pneumonia.  Oh, this is SO good.  But don't do as I did the first time I ate it:  read the directions.  You're only supposed to eat the mushrooms and corn - the other vegetables (for flavoring only) are meant to be discarded.  Haha - thought something in there was mighty chewy!  :)  I found this soup on the ethnic aisle, not the soup aisle.

Check here to see a last minute Christmas gift I made yesterday.  You might notice on the sidebar that I'm now accepting pre-orders for Quick and Easy Hexie Quilts, due out in Spring.  Yay!

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Santa Brought Me......

Pneumonia.  Not the best present I've ever received.  I'm now the proud owner of a nebulizer which I use to breath in helpful meds.  Plus strong antibiotics.  Plus cough medicine.  But how can I complain with the recent school shootings in Connecticut?  I can not and will not.

As I lay awake coughing last night, and struggling with the need to do SOMETHING to help, it came to me.  St. Jude Children's Hospital. I made a donation today.  Perhaps it will help some little child who is struggling to survive an illness they don't deserve.

I urge you to do the same.  How about $20?  One dollar for every child lost at Sandy Hook.  Think you can't do anything?  You can.  Go here.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Quilting: check, Binding: check, label: check

Oh what a feeling, dancing on ceiling....Sing along with me!  Such a good feeling to finish a quilt!
Not the best picture, but it will have to do today.  It's lying in the floor being blocked, pinned to the carpeting in a spare bedroom.

And the label!  I had a lot I wanted to put on there, but didn't want to write a book on the backside of the quilt.  So I made a QR Code with the info I wanted to include and printed it on the label.  If you want to try this, it's simple: just go here, and fill in your information in the box.

If you have a smart phone, you can download a free App called RL Classic and read what I've imbedded.  I will definitely do this on more quilts!

Here's what I'll be working on tonight: a tiny little quiltlet from Dad's shirts.  I'll be giving this to my Mom for Christmas, since I won't be able to finish her larger shirt quilt by then - hopefully this will be a good stand-in!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Done Quilting!

Oh, I didn't mean it that way!  I'll be quilting FOREVER!  But I did finish quilting on the Gee's Bend quilt.  Yay!

I did make one basket: orange sherbet?  I couldn't take a group shot because it was starting to get dark.  Tomorrow?

Of course in the middle of the quilting, this happened.  I knocked my basket of safety pins to the floor.  Could be worse.  No harm done!

And here's a dark shot of the quilt.  Tonight I'll be hand stitching the binding.  Tomorrow I'll get better photos in the DAYLIGHT!

Now I'm thinking about the label for the quilt - so much to put on there! I have an idea though...will share more soon.

Christmas Goodness

I didn't make a basket block yesterday, but I did sew!  I did lots of quilting on the Gee's Bend quilt.  But it's just boring straight lines, so I'll wait until I finish it to share another photo.

But here are a few photos to show what's been going on around here.  I was invited to a small get-together to decorate gingerbread houses.  BUT, we had to bake our own!  In the past, I've always bought those kits that come with the house pieces already baked and cut.  So I was a bit intimidated to try this.  We were provided a recipe and the house plans.  And I must say, it was easier than I expected.

We all brought different candies to the "party."  Here's my finished product - oh, this was so much fun! And it was REALLY fun to do this with a group of friends.  I'm so blessed by the new friends I've met here in Auburn, and how they include me in their fun plans.

One evening we attended the Victorian Front Porch Christmas in historic Opelika.  We walked along 10 blocks of Victorian houses decorated for the holidays.  Each home had a Victorian figure on the porch.  Along the walk we came across a hand bell concert, some carolers, a children's choir, and a bassoon concert.  We were served wassail and cookies.

Here's an example of one of the front porches.  I really enjoyed this adventure - we'll definitely do this every year!

And look who else was enjoying that evening - not our doggies (they were left at home)!  I'd never seen a doggie stroller before!

Yesterday I did get LOTS of Christmas shopping done.  I hit Kohl's, Bed, Bath, and Beyond, Target, Hobby Lobby, and Books-a-Million.  My car was filled to the brim!  Only a couple of small things left to buy, plus waiting for some things from on-line shopping to arrive on my doorstep.

Today:  MORE QUILTING!  Ready to finish Gee's Bend!  I want to get it in the mail by Saturday at the latest.  I hope you have a wonderful and productive day.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Back in the Swing of Things

I've been a bit out of sorts for a few days.  No sewing in THREE DAYS!  Today I want need to pick up a needle and thread!  And I will!

Friday I remembered I had these Kaffe stripes in my stash - ahhh, I think these will work better for the setting triangles on my basket quilt than those homespun stripes.

Here are Friday's baskets - looking a little Spring-y, don't you think?

And here was Friday's group shot.  Yes, these stripes look better - see the bottom of the quilt?  Still not sure about those solid squares.  Maybe they're too pastel?  Or maybe they don't work at all?  The jury's still out on that decision.

I have lots more photos to share of various things, so expect future posts to be photo heavy.  Lot's going on around here!  Today's goals:  some Christmas shopping, quilting on the Gee's Bend quilt (got to get it done to ship for a Christmas present), and maybe some hexies.....

Have a great day!

Friday, December 7, 2012

I'm Sewing WHAT???

Magnolia leaves???  Maybe I'm officially cuckoo....but, I saw this idea somewhere.  Wish I remembered where.  I just kept shoving leaves under my presser foot and minutes later I had a lovely live garland!

The mantel looks oh-so-much-better now, I do believe.  Since our TV is mounted over the fireplace, there is only so much mantel decorating we can do.  I think this well become a yearly thing.  And it only took about 5-10 minutes.

An Evening at Flavin's

As promised, here are a few shots from our guild party last night at Flavin Glover's house.  This photo was taken from the stairs, looking down on the family room.  Do you see that U-shaped desk behind the sofa?  Click on the picture to see bigger.  That's where Flavin sews - yes, right in the middle of the family room!  See the closet on the back wall?  That's where she stores her stash.  How convenient!

Everyone brought finger food - what a spread!  Flavin provided drinks.  Her husband said the blessing and I really enjoyed chatting with him for a few minutes.  He's just as nice as Flavin.

Here's a little vignette inside their home: one of her quilts hanging with more small quilts artfully arranged on chairs.  We were free to wander through the house.  Every bed had a Flavin Glover quilt on it - quilts I've see before in books and on the internet.  What a thrill it was to see them all in her home.

I spotted these little whittled trees on her kitchen cupboard.  I have a feeling her husband made them.  I think I'm in love with these little trees.

It was a very fun evening.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Have You Heard???

The color of the year for 2013 is Emerald!  Can't wait to put it in a quilt!!!!


Here's my basket-a-day.  I've noticed I need to add more lights to the quilt, so I pulled a light peach for the background - really it's a flesh tone.  I was having so much fun....

I made two more!  Both of these have that wonderful Kaffe pencil print background.

And the group shot!  Every day I rearrange the blocks a bit on the design wall, trying to balance the color and value.  I can see now that I need to do more rearranging.  I can't tell you how helpful it is when making a quilt to take a photograph and look at it on the computer.  You can see much more this way than just standing back and looking.

Do you see what else I added?  I placed a couple of sold blocks at the bottom, along with a striped filler triangle.  Trying to figure out the edges of the quilt.  When Alex Anderson made a quilt like this, she used nine-patches around the outside edge.  I'll stare at it awhile longer before I decide.

I'm still working on the appliqué of hexies!  LOTS and LOTS of hexies!

Tonight I'm going to our local guild's Christmas Flavin Glover's house!  I hear she decorated with her quilts - can't wait!  Full report tomorrow.

Want to Make a Block-a-Day?

Yesterday's basket-a-day:  isn't that background a sweet color?

And the group shot - they're really spreading out!  31 blocks done!  I'm thinking I'll be finished making basket blocks for this quilt around the end of the year...

Which brings me to the question....want to make another block-a-day with me starting in January?  I make SO MANY quilts at the same time - most of them are quilts for a future book or magazine.  What a pleasure it is to take a few minutes a day to make ONE BLOCK - just one!  Before I know it, I've made a quilt that is purely for FUN!

You can make the same block I'm making (not sure what my next one will be yet!), or pick your own block - even a simple nine-patch!  And once a week we'll have a linky so everyone can share their progress!  Sounds like fun to me!  Are you in?  Let me know!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

A Fabulous Doggy Portrait

I received this delightful e-mail from Becky Land recently:

I have been delighted to make a photo play quilt design of a gorgeous cavalier king charles doggy.  It is a quilt that will be auctioned to raise money for the rescue group that works with this breed.  I would like to thank you for your book, Fabric Photo Play.  It has been a wonderful guide to help me produce a such a piece that is so close to my heart.
The auction if this weekend in New Orleans at the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club Dog Show.  Thanks for sharing, Becky, and I hope the quilt raised LOTS of money!!!


I decided the medallion wasn't happening.  I like it better like this after all!  So I'll keep on basket making 'till the cows come home....or maybe until the end of the year?

Hubby's car is in the shop getting a new bumper.  So I was without a car yesterday and will be again today.  (Hubby is driving mine - a guy's got to get to work.)  But don't worry about me - I've done nothing but SEW, SEW, SEW!

I have hundreds (320, to be exact) hexies to appliqué on a quilt.  Relaxing work.  Especially if you watch Netflix while you work.  Prison Break.  I'm hooked on it.  I also watched a sappy Christmas movie yesterday while I stitched 'cause I like me some sappy Christmas movies.  I'm weird like that.

Last night hubby and I headed out to pick up some dinner ('cause I didn't cook!).  Somehow we ended up at the airport on the tarmac amongst throngs of people to greet our team's newly hired football coach.  Because my hubby is a avid fan.  And when you live in a college town, you're there to support.  Yes, we finally got some dinner.

I have another special post planned for later today, so check back in.  I'll be sharing a special quilt!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Another Iteration

I made two more baskets today - green and rusty.

And then I decided I didn't like what I saw on my design wall.  So I played and rearranged and came up with this:

If you look closely, you'll see that all these basket blocks (except two) have a print background with a solid basket.  I'm thinking of putting solid block in between - checker board effect.  This will leave me with a bunch of solid background/print basket blocks to put elsewhere on the quilt.  Hmmm.  Still not sure about this.  I'll just keep making daily baskets and it will come to me.

I also spent some time arranging flowers in a vase.  See them here.

I have a PILE of hand sewing to do tonight in front of the TV.  I realized today that I have TWO secret projects in progress, plus the basket project, the Gee's Bend quilt, and the Kantha vest.  Wondering if I should concentrate on one at time?  Nah....I seem to have a short attention span these days.  I enjoy having lots of irons in the fire!

Hubby and I enjoyed a LONG walk this afternoon.  The doggies got a bath - ahh, they smell good.  I have their bedding in the washing machine.  They should sleep well tonight!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Roller Coaster Day....

Have you ever had one of those days?  One full of ups and downs?  Today was the day for me.....

It started out well enough.  I made two baskets, coincidentally both pink.

Group shot: 28 blocks done!  In looking back at the blog photos yesterday, I'm now thinking that I liked the bigger gap in the middle better than this one.  I have a feeling this quilt has more evolving to do....

Here's where the day went downhill fast.  I left to run a couple of errands.  Looked down for a mere second......BOOM....rear ended a pick up truck!  And in hubby's car!  My car is our "working" vehicle for hauling, towing, etc.  It's full of dings and scrapes.  Hubby's car is was pristine.  Now it has a hole in the front bumper from the truck's trailer hitch.  Luckily I have a wonderful hubby who was more concerned about me than the car.

The day did get better again:

Low Country Boil at our house tonight!  Yum!  And fire in the fire pit with marshmallows to toast.  And Smores.  Yes, the day got much better at the end.

Friday, November 30, 2012

The Evolution of a Quilt

Today's basket.  Nice and bright!  Now that I have a lot of these made, I'm starting to wonder what I'm going to do with them.  Hmmm......  I've been playing on my design wall.

I arranged them with a space in the middle - maybe I can turn this into a medallion quilt.  But the space is too little.

I tried again. I think the space is too big.

I think this may be just right!  I drew a little sketch to go with this scenario.  If I keep going like this, I'll need 14 more basket blocks.  You know what I'm thinking?  If I make two-a-day, I'll be done with baskets in a week!  We'll see how that goes...

I got to visit for a bit today with a high school friend and her daughter (who will be attending Auburn next fall).  Great to see you Dawn and Ivy!

Look what I found under the tree a little while ago!  I told you they love quilts!

Thursday, November 29, 2012


I actually made TWO baskets today!  Yippee!  I love them both.

This afternoon we went for a LONG bike ride.  My heart was pumping and I'm sure my legs will be sore tomorrow.  It was a beautiful day to be outside.  We saw three deer during our bike outing.

Then we stopped off at the Auburn Conference Center to see the gingerbread campus.  So amazing!  These are actual campus buildings depicted in gingerbread.

Now I'm settled in - ready to hand stitch the night away.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Decorating Time

I was MIA from the blog yesterday due to a bad headache.  ARGHH!  I also had to miss my small quilting group. :(  I didn't feel much like talking or sewing.  But I woke up this morning feeling much better. :)

Hubby and I got to work finishing our decorating.  Her are the three trees.  I used vintage quilt tops for tree skirts.  The left tree and the middle tree are both sitting on ottomans.

The Jim Shore figurines are lined up on the dining room table.

The carolers on on the pianos.

I saw an idea in Southern Living where someone spray painted magnolia leaves for decorations.  We have plenty of those around, so I sprayed away this morning and used them to decorate our door swag (above) and some outside plants.

I made the basket-a-day - love the red, white, and blue!

Group shot:  23 blocks done!