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!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Basket and Shopping and More Thanksgiving

I got my basket making on this morning!  Love this Kaffe print - the block ended up with a sweet carrot in the middle of the basket.  :)

Group shot:  22 blocks done!  It's amazing how fast these little baskets seem to multiply.  And remember, these only take about 10 minutes per day.  I'm working on a few other quilts that I can't show.  I'm loving my new Block-a-day plan.  Even though I'm working on quilts for a book, I can take a few minutes a day and before I know it I have a fun quilt.

I also quilted two sections of the Gee's Bend quilt.

Here's a shot of the Thanksgiving table with my wool acorns scattered amongst the silver pumpkins.

And here's the family photo just before we all dug in!  You can't miss me - I'm the one in bright orange.

This morning hubby and I went shopping for all the remaining Christmas decorations we need.  I put up our tree yesterday.  While in Birmingham, we used a lovely 7 foot "slim" tree.  It worked great in a corner.  However, that same tree looks kind of puny here.  We now have higher ceilings.  Last night I searched online for a taller pre-lit tree.  The ones I like are more than $1000 - that's not going to happen!  I put my thinking cap on (went to bed).  Overnight the solution hit me.  Why not elevate the 7 foot tree we have, and put two smaller trees (we already own) beside it?  We tried it this morning.  We put the 7 foot tree on top of a 2 foot tall firm ottoman.  Then we put the two smaller trees beside it.  IT WORKED!!  How's that for making do?  We just had to buy some new ribbon for wreaths, some live poinsettias, and a couple more small items.

Tomorrow morning it's supposed to rain here.  We'll use that time to decorate the trees.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

A Day on the Road

We got up early this morning and got on the road to take my mother back to Augusta, GA.  Hubby and I took turns driving so neither of us would be too tired.  We stopped at a grocery store on the way into Augusta so Mom could get some necessities so she'll be set for the next few days - until someone can take her back to the store again.  After 7 hours of driving (3.5 each way), we were glad to get back home.

I went immediately to my studio to make my basket.

And the group shot: 21 blocks done!

Then I sat down at my HQ Sixteen and quilted on Gee's Bend for about 45 minutes.  If I do a little each day this quilt will be done in about a week.  Yay!  Can't wait for a finish!

Hubby will still be on vacation for another week!  We have plans to decorate the house for Christmas, go biking at Calloway Gardens, and lots of quilting for me and golf for him.  Looking forward to it!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Fall is in the Air

It's chilly here today and the doggies enjoyed a morning by the fire.  They each have their own pouf!

Mickey (on the right) was only happy there for a bit - he prefers a human lap. :)

I got my basket-a-day done this morning.  Pretty, pretty.

And the group shot:  20 blocks done!

I had to take my mom back to the mall to exchange something this morning.  Now we are home for the day.  The daughters are here and we'll be watching football all day.  Our team will most probably lose - that's okay - we love them anyway.  We also have a 2000 piece jigsaw puzzle set up on the kitchen table - Van Gogh's Starry Night.  I like to have one going during the holiday season for whomever wants to sit and work on it.

I got some hexies to work on during football time - glad to pick up a needle anytime!

Friday, November 23, 2012

The Day After

Thanksgiving Day went great!  We had a total of nine people:  Mom, Daughter 1 and her hubby, Daughter 2, Hubby's parents and brother (came from Birmingham), hubby, and me.  If I do say so, this was the best turkey I have ever roasted.  The flavor of the onion, celery, and bay leaves I put in the brine really came through, plus it was so juicy and tender.  Yum!

It was after dark by the time the last of the guests left.  I immediately put on my jammies and settled in on the sofa with a little toddy and my computer.  Ahhhh......I was so tired.

Today I've done almost nothing - a little cyber shopping since there are some great deal out there this weekend.  I hate to battle the crowds.  Love me some armchair shopping!

I did go up to the studio for a bit to make a basket.  That background doesn't show up well, but it's a pale blue.  Forgot to take a group shot.  Maybe tomorrow?

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Despite my best intentions to go upstairs and make a basket block today, it never happened.  However, 2 pumpkin pies and 2 pecan pies did happen.  I also pre-baked the sweet potato casserole and the dressing since the oven will be busy roasting the turkey tomorrow.  Oh, and I made a double batch of sweet potato biscuits - should be good with ham.

We also went for long walk at a nearby park with the daughters. Mom, and the two doxies.  And I made these little felted wool acorns to scatter on the table tomorrow.  So I did get my craftiness on for a bit!

Ahh, the house smells so good today!  And it will smell even better tomorrow when Tom Turkey goes in the oven bright and early.  We have so much to be thankful for this year: family, friends, hearth and home, good health.  And so much more that I can't even begin to list!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Back Up and Running!

Yay, yay, YAY!  My computer is FINALLY working again!  And I fixed it myself (with some help)!  It had a virus - I struggled for days to get it to accept some new virus software.  Now I'm good to go.  But I was told (nicely) that I need to clean up my desktop and get rid of old e-mails.  Yes, I'm willing to admit I had over 4000 e-mails!  All old ones that I hadn't gotten around to deleting.  All gone now!  And yes, I cleaned up my desktop, too.  Hopefully my computer will appreciate all the attention it's gotten in the last few days.

So what else has been going on around here?  As you can see above, I've done some machine quilting. So glad I finally got started quilting on the Gee's Bend quilt.

I got a new t-shirt - gotta love it!

Set the table with my newly painted pumpkins.

And I made another basket block.  Only made one, I'm afraid, but at least that's progress.  This one really screams Autumn, doesn't it?

My mother is here for the week.  We've been running all her errands - she came with a list.  Plus we've begun to cook the Thanksgiving feast.  The turkey is brining, the sweet potato casserole is made and in the freezer, the corn bread for the dressing is cooked and crumbled.  Tomorrow we'll be making 4 pies, 2 pumpkin and 2 pecan.  Oh, and there is an apple cake all ready to gobble.

Gobble, gobble!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Computer Crash :(

Alas, my computer crashed last night.  I'm posting this from my phone. Hope to be up and running again soon!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Where Did Yesterday Go?

Yesterday was just one of those days!  I had the termite inspectors here - they were outside the entire time, but still....  And the Hunter Douglas blinds we had ordered came in so I had two guys here installing them in the master bedroom and the main living area.  These blinds were a splurge, but now we finally have some privacy and light control in our bedroom - yay!  The new blinds in the kitchen and dining room will probably stay up most of the time, but they'll be nice to lower when we have major glare on the TV.

So anyway, never did a basket yesterday.  But above is today's.  I've switched back to making solid backgrounds with print baskets.  This background is called Mango.

And the group shot:  17 blocks done!

Today I went to the Newcomers' luncheon - yummo - had shrimp and grits at Jimmy's.  Then I stopped at the Honey Baked Ham shop to get a ham for next week.  On the way home I snapped a shot of these benches.  I would love to know what Jason did to make Bridget mad!  Or maybe Bridget was in the wrong?

Tonight is quilt guild.  Looking forward to it!  Though I'd better bundle up - it's gotten pretty cold.  Today's temp has only gone up in the 50's.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

16 Baskets

Today's basket:  yellow floral and some bright pink.  Love it!

 Group shot:  an even 16 blocks done!

I like to add a few new ornaments to our tree each year.  (No, I'm not putting out Christmas decorations yet - one holiday at a time for me!)  But look at this little cutie I found at Hobby Lobby when I was on my pumpkin hunt.  It's hard to find dachshund Christmas ornaments, so when I see one I jump on it.  I love the little guy's smirk!

Then I grabbed this button beauty this morning at World Market - I was there to buy cloth napkins for the Thanksgiving table.  Maybe tomorrow I'll have time to set the table and take a picture.

I ran in Hobby Lobby again this morning to pick up some sewing machine oil.  Okay, NOW I can start quilting Gee's Bend!  Tomorrow maybe?

Go check out The Hexie Blog to see some hexie goodness that I've been working on.....

Monday, November 12, 2012

Fall Craftiness by Sleeping Beauty

This morning I got my craftiness on.  Thanksgiving will be at our house and I want to make the dining room table especially nice.  After Halloween, I hit up Hobby Lobby for a load of half-price pumpkins.

I spread them on a tarp this morning and first spray painted them all cream.  In between paint layers I cleaned an area in the garage, preparing for the refrigerator delivery tomorrow.

Then the pumpkins got a coat of shiny metallic paint along with a quick spritz of water - the effect is supposed to look a bit like mercury glass.  This technique is really intended for Looking Glass spray paint, but I couldn't find any.  The shiny metallic paint was good substitute, I think.

The pumpkins dried to the touch quickly and I brought them inside to cure overnight.  I'll set the table tomorrow -stay tuned.  Within an hour of finishing the project, the rain came along.  I finished in the nick of time.

After a bit of hand sewing and lunch, I lay down for a nappy.  Next thing I knew, it was dark outside!  Oh, my!  Just call me Sleeping Beauty.  Well, I don't know about the beauty part, but I certainly did sleep a long time.  I'm chalking it up to the dregs of the yuckity-yuck.  That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

So it was after dark when I ran upstairs to make my basket-a-day.  Deep plum - yum!

And the group shot: 15 blocks done!

Isn't this little tree pretty?  I love this time of year!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Kantha Vest Progress

I was so productive today!   I decided it was high time to finish my Kantha Quilt vest, so it was first on the agenda.  I finished all the seams - now the "wrong" side looks as good as the "right," so yes, indeed it can be reversible!

Then I made oodles and oodles of bias binding and stitched it all around the perimeter of the vest and around the arm holes - ready for hand stitching!  But I won't be leaving well enough alone - I think I need to embellish here and there with....some HEXIES, of course!

Basket-a-day: found these dots hiding and paired them with some neon lime.

And the group shot:  14 blocks done.

I also found these Kaffe Fassett stripes hiding - hmmm, maybe I could throw some of these in with the baskets?

Yes, I think it will work!

Hubby is doing a bit better - yay!  I took some time out this afternoon to head to Lowes where I bought a refrigerator for our garage.  We had two refrigerators at our old house - left them both for the new owners.  I really can use extra space during the holidays when I cook so much more than usual.  I knew I'd better get one soon since Thanksgiving is almost upon us.  It will be delivered Tuesday.