Sunday, January 31, 2010

Ice Day!

We had a beautiful ice fall yesterday and last night. This morning the trees looked beautiful with the sun shining through the ice - just like glass trees. I must have a hundred or more pictures of trees like this over the years, but they still just leave me in awe of the beauty of nature. Here is my baby girl Ellen(she's 24) getting in some sledding.
I spent my time cleaning, sewing and napping - now this I could get used to! I finished up the Gail Pan Christmas Wish stitchery. I have not quite decided how I will used these yet, but I am thinking they would make a pretty garland with brass bells hanging inbetween them. I also did some work on my Heart and Home wall hanging. I think the red border around the heart is too much - need to work on that. Maybe trim it down and use the same off white blocks to border a smaller red border...what do you think?
And last...but not least...I am having a GIVE-AWAY, just because I want to. I found these great OTT lights at Tuesday Morning. They are 9 inches high and perfect for taking with you to a friends house on Bee Night. I took the picture with my table top light in the background so you can get an idea of how big they are. I got one for me and one for YOU! So leave me a comment so I know who YOU are, and I will draw a name on Sunday, February 7. My international blogging buddies are very welcome to enter the drawing too!
If you follow my blog, but don't have a blog and/or can't comment, then just send me an email to let me know you dropped by. My email is I will enter you in the drawing. Those with "no-reply" comments or no way for me to contact you, I will have to take your name off the list, and that is just sad. So, please send me an email if you are one of those folks.
Happy Stitchin!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

How many squares can fit in a 6" block?

In this block, you get 169 squares in the 6 inch finshed block. I recently purchased Terrie Sandelin's book, Miniatures in Minutes, and while it took me many minutes, it was fun to do. This particular block is not in the book, but I used her method and my design to make it. You start with a 13 x 13 inch grid and lay out your colors the way you want, and since I want a small wall hanging for Valentine's day, I came up with this pattern. I like most of her technique, except she uses glue to hold the fabric pieces in place before you sew them. I found this messy and made removing the paper foundation tedious. I also did not like taking a chance of gumming up my machine with the glue. She also uses translucent vellum paper as a foundation, and that I found GREAT!

So, I tried a different technique of actually basting the pieces in place with the longest stitch length on my machine. Once I sewed the row together, I removed the basting stitch. It went much faster and the paper came off much easier. I went with color and a different design for my second block. Yep, this is fun, and I think the blocks are impressive as all the points match and they are sooooooooooooooo tiny. My husband suggest I make an entire full size quilt out of these blocks, hmmmmm....NOT happening!

This weekend, I managed to get the guest room and the new play room for the grandkids almost done. My parents dresser that my dad made is now cleaned, polished and in place in the guest room. I think it cleaned up real nice and am so happy to have it. The dresser scarf was made by my mom and has lace that she crocheted around the edge. That is a picture of my parents on the dresser. In the mirror you get a hint of another treasure that my husband and I have owned for 33+ is the kitchen cabinet that belonged to his grandmother. I painted it white 32 years ago and used it in the nursery for my twins. It was great for keeping diapers, blankets, sheets, etc. Then it was moved to the guest room and the rose stencil added and used to keep guest towels, toiletries, etc....then back to the "nursery" for the grandkids and held blankets, extra clothes, wipes, diapers, etc. Now it is once again in the guest room. I just love this cabinet and it holds a lot of memories.

I have had 101 hits since I posted the last post about the purple fabric swap, and can you believe I got no takers?????? Is that not amazing? LOL, I am definitely being sarcastic here and I guess you all don't like chain letters any more than I do. So I am officially withdrawing my offer to participate in this swap and will have to return the two squares I received from my friend. Sorry B....its just not meant to be.

Happy Stitchin,

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Anyone interested in a purple fabric square swap?

I have received a chain letter where you send 2 six inch purple fabric squares to 7 different people (the 7 includes me). If the chain is not broken, then you should eventually receive 72 squares. I normally do not do chain letters - they die when they reach my house, but this one actually sounds fun. I don't want to send it to someone that does not want to join though, so thought maybe I could find 6 people on here that would want to play.

If you would like to participate, please send me an email with your address and I will send it on to you.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Its moving time again......

We have been working hard to get my Mom's house cleaned out and ready for my neice to move in next week. Now by cleaned out, I mean clean out the closets, clear space for my neice's furniture, move out some of the stuff, but leave most there. I am bringing to my house some rather large pieces of furniture that my Dad made, including a 6 foot Buffet, 7 foot china hutch and a 6 foot dresser with mirror. We got the buffet moved up yesterday and here is a picture. Daddy's trademark was the cracks that always appeared in his furniture after a few years, and sure enough, both doors have cracks which my husband has puttied the one on the left. These are made of pine and are very heavy. I am going to paint them white, to go with the cabinets and furniture in the kitchen, as the dining room is right off the kitchen. So I will be sanding and painting tomorrow on the buffet, but I am so excited to be getting these treasured pieces.

Now for the see these are very large pieces, and I did not have very large empty spaces in my house. So.....the side table, which my brother made, I used as a buffet in my dining room went to my Mom's house, the storage benches in the "old" play room go to the new play room to make room for the china hutch, the baby crib in the former nursery now play room was given away, the book cases in the old play room go to the new play room - then there is the guest room, that has to be complete redone to make room for the huge dresser. (Old dresser and bed to Goodwill).
One other treasured piece of furniture to come to my house is my mother's secretary. She has used this as her desk for as long as I can remember. I know I always loved it and wondered what secrets were in those drawers. Well now I know, as I read through cards and momentos she kept all these years. I finally had to box them up to save for another day. The secretary will now become my desk and hopefully some day, will also be treasured by one of my children. Right now, it sits in the middle of my living room...hmmmm, what can I get rid of to make room for it? Then there is the photo album chest.....
I did manage to get in a little sewing, but nothing I can show you as it is part of a swap with some friends and it is secret. I had a nice visit from my neice's daughter this afternoon though, and she was just full of questions about my sewing room and asking if I would teach her to make a dress for her mom. Elizabeth is 6 and I think a dress might be a little much to start with, but I just happened to have some large quilt blocks with the "X" cross stitch preprinted on, and I got out a hoop, some floss (she laughed about that as she said she cleans her teeth with floss) and a needle and got her to stitching. She was so excited.
So, lots to do, and oh so little time to get it done.
Happy Stitchin,

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Quilting in the Woods 2010

Just how much fun can 23 women have who are isolated from the rest of the world with fabric, thread, machines, patterns and someone to cook for them three meals a day? TONS! The retreat was great and over all too soon. This is the view from the lodge where we did our sewing. The pond was frozen over every day, but we were warm and toasty all day in the lodge with a nice big fire in the fireplace.

I workd on my grandson Levi's quilt - its a Buggy Barn Patthern and was the first one of their patterns I tried. I was so excited that I got the quilt top finished. The bones, nose and eyes are all machine applique using ultrasuede and really make for a fun quilt. Now to get it quilted. His birthday is March 17.
I also worked on Gail Pan's Christmas Wish. I know most of you have that one finished. I traced these off for my mom to work on and she did get started but did not finish, so I am finishing them up for her. They were kind of bittersweet to work on - I love the patterns and enjoy the stitchery and its special as my mom started them, but I sure miss her and wish she were here to finish them.
And speaking of stitcheries - look at the elegant snowflake that Mary was working on. These are napkins - but who would dare to use such a lovely work of art?
I hope you all have a great week and thanks for stopping by,

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

..and a new year begins...

Its been over a month since I last posted, and so much has happened. I took some time tonight to speed read all the blogs I follow. I did not leave any comments, but sure enjoyed catching up on what you all have been up to.
My break from blogging was something I had to do in order to take care of things going on in my family. Mom had gotten pretty sick and after a hospital stay, came to live with me. I treasure the time we had together, and am so sorry to say she passed away on December 10. I miss her each and every day, but feel very blessed to have had a loving Mom who shared with me her faith, love of family, creativity and yes, her quilting.
Cathi, at Shakerwood Primitives, posted the sweetest comment about my mom and I thank her for that, and some of you saw it and sent nice letters to me - I thank each and every one of you for your thoughfulness.
We have been working to clean out her house and get it ready for my neice to move in. Saturday, I had the honor to straighten up her sewing room. I went down very early before any of the others came, and took my time to carefully look at each item. Mom had started a flower basket quilt, where each block was to be different. I will finish this for her some day, but not for awhile - hard to sew with tears in your eyes. I thought I would share with you one of the baskets and the beautiful hand quilting she was doing. There was to be an alternate block of hand quilting design between each flower block. Mom like to quilt each block and then sew the blocks together.
And this little angel is Taralyn - my beautiful new granddaughter. She was born right before Thanksgiving and is a darling. I did not post about it at the time as there was just so much going on with my Mom and Dad and the Taralyn's birth and work and Thanksgiving - well you get the picture. She truely is a blessing in a time of loss.
This weekend I will be going on a quilt retreat. It has been months since I was even able to attend a club meeting, much less a retreat! I look forward to the time to relax, gather my thoughts, chat with friends and enjoy the fellowship of other women, but I also face the reality of so much to do at home, and my Dad stills needs daily attention, and my parent's house needs so much work. We all face times like this in our lives, and it always brings to my mind the scripture "Be still, and know that I am God" which is a reminder to let God help us get through these overwhelming times. It sure is not easy being still though - although at times, I do it quite well.
So I thank you for your prayers, your support and your friendship and wish you all a happy new year.