Tuesday, April 13, 2010

COMPLETELY GOBSMACKED!!

(with a subtitle of....Things that Come in the MAIL!)

Yesterday Sue P wrote:
You could always put a holler out for your followers to find certain colors you have a hard time finding.

I'm up north in Finger Lakes, NY.

Sue P.


I've had boxes show up with no return address before....just a UPS or Fedex or Priority Mail label...so it's no joke, even though it gets lots of laughs at my lectures! So I had to laugh when Sue said..put out a holler for dark brown shirts, because I can just imagine that I'll be drowning in them in no time!

But imagine my surprise when I opened up THIS box Monday. You know, I feel kinda bad because it sat in my front hall all day yesterday. (Guilty guilty guilty!) I got home from a trip on Saturday night, pulling into my driveway around midnight. I went straight to bed.

(After looking at my new carpet that was installed while I was gone...I asked for carpet the color of DIRT..and I am happy to say this pleases me! I think Buddy and Sadie approve too, and it's a good thing, since they are the reason I need dirt-colored-carpet!)

I slept til nearly 10am, and DH and I spent Saturday morning running errands. You know the usual? Sam's Club, Target, Dicks Sporting Goods (his choice, not mine..I sat there and poked through my mail on my phone just nodding and going "Uhhuh, oh really, yes that's nice..." while he shopped for a new baseball mit. What do I know about mits? About as much as he knows about thimbles...and I did make him stop at Joanns where the notions wall was 50% off, so I could inflict the same kind of pain on HIM that the sporting goods store does to me!

By the time we had lunch (I'm a sucker for Chili's bottomless soup and salad, it comes with chips and salsa and I like the Enchilda soup)and made it home..I was still so knackered from this trip that I took a long afternoon nap. Which brought us to late afternoon!

And you already know from yesterday's post that I was off cutting and kitting to the wee small hours Sunday night BECAUSE I NAPPED! :cD

Today I hit the ground running...no cutting has been done even though I plan on it later. I had to work on the website calendar, tackle more email, arrange future travel plans, finalize everything for my trip tomorrow, do the mail order, start packing for tomorrow.....

When I came back into the house after the post office run, I decided it was time to open the box and see what goodies were in it! Ummmmm...there is a letter....and it says...

As someone who obviously appreciates quilts, I hope you can recycle these for donating or just repair, rennovate, etc for your own or other use.

Thanks.


Wait. No name? Just Thanks? OH. MY.

The box had everything wrapped in black trash bags. I mean, it could be ANYTHING in there?

But look what I found!!!


antiques in the mail!
The first couple were wonderful utility quilts made out of simple panels of whole feedsacks sewn together. Made quickly for warmth and tied or machine quilted...they don't look like they have been used hard. I'm sure lots of quilts like these wore out with the using through hard times. The fabric in them is so good, I'm thinking I might be able to repurpose it somehow, but for now, I'm just folding these and admiring their colors and textures!

The next black trash bag contained a lavender 30's railroad crossing quilt..I saw the hand quilting stitches and nearly cried! In fact...I think I did...cuz Jeff came running down from his room to find out what was going on!

And it just got better the farther I went into this big box! The one that really made my heart sing is the Sunflower quilt from the late 1800's....There just aren't words to describe how it felt to hold this quilter's work in my hands, knowing she is long gone, yet her stitches remain.

I have no idea if these were collected quilts? Or if they had been passed down through one family? I just don't KNOW!! But I do know that I will cherish them and love them and fondle them and dream over them, and love their fabrics, their colors, their quirkyness...

I left comments on each picture in webshots...so you might need to click the link to get over there and look at them in the album instead of just watch the slide show..but..man...I'm just humbled, and tickled, and awed, and....I don't have words to thank the person (whoever you are in Annapolis!) for gifting me with these wonderful quilts. THANK YOU!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Kitting Up!!



Remember that brown bundle I got in Indiana?

Well, it's been sitting here on my cutting table because I didn't know exactly what to do with it. The pieces range in width from 4" on up to 8"...some are full width of fabric, some are half...it really is a SCRAP bundle! But sometimes just having something out on the table will get things running around in my brain and inspire me in a color way I hadn't really considered doing before!

Until yesterday afternoon, that is!

That bin of muslin was still under the table from cutting for the reproduction 30s/40's project. (uhoh...why has this gone on the back burner!?)

I'd been cutting up some shirts that had found their way home with me, mostly in shades of blue and brown as well, and BAM! I knew what I had to do!

Really REALLY brown shirts are hard to find. They come in shades of tan, beige, all the way up to kind of an oak color, but unless you are the UPS guy, you just don't find dark chocolate brown shirts....but the ones I do have really look GREAT against some of these other browns that came in this bundle, the recycled fabrics add such a feeling of "utility" to otherwise "too perfect off the bolt" fabrics.

And muslin? What can I say.....I love antique quilts, and sometimes the other fabrics we have been told by the quilt police to use, such as Kona Snow, or really pretty cutesy all from the same line shirtings just are too......designer? I'm not sure. I want good contrast between the plaids and stripes and recycled fabrics, and the ones I've purposed for use from this brown bundle...and I love all the various shadings of muslin that are coming out of this bin! UTILITY! Yes. I think I'm going to like this. If muslin was a staple in quilts from the beginning of the days of patchwork, then that is what I am going to use now to give me the feel I want!

So this is what I spent hours on yesterday, kitting up, getting ready to leave for the DC area tomorrow. DC in the spring!! WOOT! I so love driving up through Virginia, it is one of my favorite places for a good long scenic drive.

Thoughts on the subject of "recycling"....Wouldn't you consider fabric that is given to you by a friend who doesn't want it any more as recycling? Would you consider fabric you've taken out of a kit to use in another project instead.....recycling?

What about a big bag of 1980's calicoes that someone brought to a trunk show just for you because you were the only person they thought would want or use it? *LOL* Is THIS recycling? I've got these great vintage 80's browns that came in such a bag. They are lovely!

As I ponder the text for the next book, does recycled fabric really have to come from CLOTHING I have taken apart to fit that category? Sometimes I think re-purposing fabric that has sat there intended for another project, but use it instead for another by switching gears in the same category.

And sometimes you just have to add new fabric (Like from this brown bundle)to your collection of recycled-from-a-previous-life fabrics to spice it up, and as long as the combination gives me the feeling I want, I'm okay with it.

At some point, I'm going to have to stop, repack the trunk show, load the books in the car, tackle the mail order, throw something for dinner in the crock pot (I haven't tried that lasagna yet, I think today might be the day)CLEAN THE HOUSE, and get a good night's sleep so I can leave in the morning!

But first....more cutting is calling my name!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

In search of more thimbles..


I posted this on the Quiltville facebook page about a discussion on favorite thimbles. It is something that comes up and around every once in a while because we all find things that we like that work for us....

I use these cheapie plastic ones the most...they are comfortable on my finger. I don't like metal thimbles, something about the feel of that metal needle against the metal thimble can give me the creeps like a fork scraping against a plate! And then there is that sweating thing, and no room for my nail.

I've tried leather ones only to have the needle work it's way through the leather and into my finger. OUCH! I know they have "coins" in them now to help that, but the leather ones always made my finger sweat too. And that room for the nail thing again!

I've had expensive $50 thimbles that were going to be the "cat's meow" in my mind, because they were beautiful and had designer names on them...but...they were still metal even if silver, the scraping feeling was still there, my finger would still sweat, even with an open nail thimble, and then the thimble would slide around.

And those expensive designer thimbles are HEAVY! I didn't like that at all.

Then there is the story of the EXPENSIVE designer thimble that went missing for YEARS, creating much panic and dismay on my part, only to be found in a FLOOR VENT about 10 minutes before we left South Carolina on our move to North Carolina. I just think $50 is a lot of money for something that I am going to worry about losing, and doesn't do as well as the cheapie plastic one I can get at Walmart or Joannes (on the notions wall, for those looking...use your coupon or go when notions are 1/2 off) and I don't worry if I lose them!

Not to mention...how many of these can I buy for that same $50 to $60 that the designer ones cost me? I'd rather spend my money on FABRIC! (Or Chinese food, but that's another addiction....)

I've never had the needle go through the plastic ones, and though they are a hard plastic, they seem to grip the needle. After a lot of use, you can find the dimples worn down and/or obliterated, but they are so cheap it is easy to toss one, and replace it with another.

Which is what I am about to do right now! I've got a flight to catch this afternoon, and my thimble top is all grooved up, so I'm going on a walk about to the Walmart that is down the road about 1/2 mile in search of a replacement so I can happily stitch my way home on the plane :c)

I know there has been discussion about using pony tail holders to keep thread on a bobbin when traveling, but here I tamed this wood spool of YLI red quilting thread (GO RED!! YEAH!) with a pony tail holder for the same reason! This quilting thread is a bit springy and there is no groove to catch the end in to keep it from unwinding, so the pony tail holder did the trick!

These are the cheapie scissors that have traveled to France and back with me...with no problem. No problem with them in the USA either, but even if there was, it wouldn't bother me..they were in a 3 pack for $3.96 or some stupid price in the sewing notions aisle at Walmart as well. (Probably not far from the cheapie plastic thimbles!)

I need scissors that are sharp enough to give a good clean cut on the end of the thread so it is easy to put through the eye of the needle. Those clover pendant thingies (or dental floss container cutters) always leave me with frazzled ends, and no amount of wetting the thread, or strategic poking can get a fuzzy frazzled thread end through that eye. So I risk taking these because they cut clean to the tip, making threading easy.

Got project? Check! Got book on mp3? Check! Got granola bar, an apple, a couple of tangerines, a zip lock baggie of animal crackers? Check! Got gum? Check!

And off I go!



PS.
This is not a paid advertisement or sponsored anything by any thimble company out there, this is just what I like to use to get the job done!

PSS! After all that walking (which I needed anyway) the thimbles could not be found at this walmart...truth be told..maybe since they got rid of the fabric departments they've even scaled down on what notions they carry, and I'm not happy at all! Pffft!

The Tale of the Traveling Quilt....


Just a preview on the hand quilting project!

An update on the one that is traveling with me....and I wanted to share this with you because I've had to switch some gears on it.

First off, I'm quilting this with red thread because I happen to love red thread! I think the colors I use most in my hand quilting are black and red!

Second off....I struggled....all the way around the first round of fans on the quilt center...because the fabrics are so busy scrappy, I had a hard time seeing my stitches and where I was echoing the design!

But..I persevered. I did manage to go all the way around the outside of the center (I'm going to be doing something else in the borders..not sure what yet)and then I flip-flopped! I am now quilting from the BACK SIDE of the quilt. I can see my stitches on the back side..My placement is much more even because I can see where I am going! So...tada. I've done this before, and I'm doing it again, and it might be something you want to try for yourself.

I also know this works really well if you have a backing fabric that has a neat design that you can outline with stitches...Say you have a backing fabric with large flowers and you outline them by quilting from the back, you get that neat effect of the flowers on the front, outlined in your stitches! So this is another thing I want to try.

And I am also reminded of a pre-marked whole cloth quilt I bought at Mary Jo's a few years back...I wanted to use that as the quilt BACKING and quilt it from the back so that the design would appear on the front, but I haven't found the quilt I want to do that with yet, and there is that whole "CENTERING" thing that I hate to do in case I get it off somewhat, you know? But the idea is still there.

SO..I'll continue to quilt from the back on this, working my fans around and around toward the inside of the quilt center in a spiral, and they will end up where they end up. And THEN..I'll turn it back over and probably quilt my borders from the front so I can see what I'm doing easier there...

Where there is a will, there is a way!

Friday, April 09, 2010

Hanging Rock State Park....


Easter Morning we decided to do something a bit out of the ordinary for us. This whole new "no Easter baskets or egg hunts" stage of life, you know?

Something we've always wanted to do since moving here was visit Hanging Rock State Park, which is about a 40 minute drive from my house. I mean, who wouldn't be enticed by this blurb on the Park's website:
Not far from the cities of the Triad area, off the four-lane highways there's another North Carolina to be discovered—sheer cliffs and peaks of bare rock, quiet forests and cascading waterfalls, views of the piedmont plateau that stretch for miles.

So off we went. The first "SHORTS" day of the year! Water? Check! Granola bars for energy? Check!

I tell you what, these trails were steep! They seemed to go up and up and up...BOTH WAYS! We saw some lovely waterfalls, (which you hike DOWN to, and then back up)And the trail to Hanging Rock itself goes up and up and up...and once you get almost there, there are something like 386 steps you have to climb to make it to the top.

I couldn't go farther! If we had done the Rock first before the falls, maybe I could have but man..I was beat just getting to the stairs!


So..it was still fun, even if I wimped out. We'll try it again. And it was a great little photo op space, you know? To think all of this within driving distance of my house for crying out loud. We could see all the way to Virginia :c)

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Show & Tell!

I'm sharing the Eye Candy!

One of the very very fun things I absolutely love is when someone sends pics of the quilts they've made from tutorials I've put up! It is so inspiring to me that you would even take the time to do this. And I've saved them, in a folder called "pics to upload" that has gotten fuller, and fuller....

A while back I had tried to put the quilts on a "slide show" thing from webshots, only to find out that some people could view it, other people couldn't...and I'm not sure what to do about it yet, so I am very behind in uploading new things to the page galleries. I'm still working on that. I thought maybe just a link to a gallery page that would hold thumbnails and you could click the thumbnail to view the big pic....but this all takes TIME, and I don't have it. Right now I need to be quilting and finish the projects for the sequel to Scraps & Shirttails, and putzing with computer stuff takes time away from that.

So I had an Idea! Every week or so I could have a show and tell day and share with you the lovely quilts that people have made. I can't give you a set-in-stone day either with my schedule, but just now and then. What do you think?

Sew here we go!

This is Mary's Beary Wonky! She said she was inspired by the crumbs tutorial...and I love how this is fairly color planned! It's something that I haven't done myself yet, because I am such a "kitchen sink" throw everything in scrappy girl! Great job Mary!

These next 3 pics are from Cathryn! She said, after making these 3 quilts, and starting on "Patches & Pinwheels" that "I am only now seeing my scrap boxes reduce. It is a slow diet, but a fun one! Ha." This is Oklahoma Backroads, and I love her springy colors!

Cathryn's My Blue Heaven just SINGS! This is one of my most popular classes because we use both the companion angle ruler and the easy angle ruler in this class. The whole quilt comes from 2.5" strips and squares!

Cathryn's "Jared Takes a Wife" I've always loved this Blackford's Beauty block, and her colors just bring the ocean to me...I love blue and green together!

And last but not least is Barbara's Patriotic Bricks & Stones! Great job Barbara! I don't remember if this was a soldier quilt or not, but it is GREAT!

Thanks ladies for sharing your Show and Tell with me....I am definitely now ready to go and sew some more!

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Lasagna in the Pot!

This recipe just came to me from my brother Mike's wife, Nicole!

I am SO going to try this...Crock pot recipes are right up at the top for me!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Crock Pot Lasagna Ingredients:
1 lb ground beef
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
29 oz tomato sauce (I use less if I'm using fresh tomatoes as part of my sauce)
1 C water
6 oz tomato paste
1 tsp salt
1 tsp oregano
4 C mozzarella (I usually do a combination of mozzarella and cheddar to equal the 4 cups)
1/2 C parmesan (I use this if I have it on hand)
1 1/2 C cottage cheese (could use ricotta if desired)
Lasagna noodles (Dry, not boiled)

In a large skillet over medium heat, cook ground beef, onion, and minced garlic until meat is no longer pink then drain. Add tomato sauce, water, tomato paste, salt, and oregano.

In a mixing bowl combine the mozzarella (cheddar if you like), parmesan, and cottage cheese.

Spread about 1/4 of meat sauce in bottom of crock pot, add layer of noodles, then add 1/3 of cheese mixture. Repeat until meat sauce and cheese is gone.

Cook on low for 4-5 hours.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I need something NEW to try to get me out of the humdrums, and I can so see this with a salad and some garlic bread as a side..maybe some sliced fruit for dessert. YUM!

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Meet Kay!


While at lunch with Marilyn and Gloria on the day of my arrival....(Oh Maggianos Little Italy, I have found a new favorite!!)....Gloria told me of her quilter friend Kay!

(And as an aside....it seems like so many of our photos were taken at restaurants, or while we were eating something or planning on eating something. I guess quilting and food have a lot in common, or go hand in hand, or something of that sort!)

Kay was not going to be able to make it to the guild meeting lecture or any of the classes, so we conspired to just drop by and surprise her. I was told she is a huge Quiltville fan, and makes many many many charity quilts, she is piecing on something ALL the time!

So off we go...it's a bit of a jaunt, but I know it's going to be worth it. We were giggling and chuckling the whole way on how we were going to surprise Kay and catch her unaware.

Well, wouldn't you know it?! Kay had already figured it out and was EXPECTING ME!!

Still, we had such a lovely visit, and I left feeling so inspired about what quilters can do even if we find ourselves house bound due to health issues. There is no stopping us, is there?

Kay, it was so great meeting you, visiting your lovely home, seeing ALL YOUR QUILTS!

In Stitches,

Anyone Near Lawrence, Kansas?!

I'm making a visit out to Kansas soon, and there is still room in some classes, so I'm posting this info from Nan!



After suggesting Bonnie to our program committee a couple years ago, Bonnie's visit to my quilt guild, Kaw Valley Quilters Guild in Lawerence, KS
is finally coming - NEXT MONTH! If you'd like to join us, we'd love to have you! :)

Bonnie will be giving her "Scrap User's System" lecture at 7pm, Monday May 17 and 9:30am Tuesday, May 18. There is a $5 fee for non-guild members to attend the lectures.

There is also still room available in our workshops with Bonnie. On Tuesday afternoon from 12:30-5pm Bonnie will be teaching Blue Ridge Beauty from her Adventures with Leaders & Enders book; cost is $35 for non-members of the guild.

On Wed, May 19 from 9:30am - 6:00pm Bonnie will teach Texas Braid from the Adventures with Leaders & Enders book; cost for this workshop is $45 for non-members of the guild.

All lectures and workshops will be held at Plymouth Congregational Church in downtown Lawrence, KS.


If you'd like to come to the lectures, you can just show up. If you're interested in the workshops, please contact Kris Barlow while space is still available:

For those of you who say, "Bonnie, please come to my town!" suggest her to your guild program committee and/or local quilt shop, and who knows - maybe she will! It worked for me! :)

Nan in KS


Next Month!! Kansas is Next Month! And I'm in some kind of time warp with pulling out carpet and old padding because new carpet is coming TOMORROW!

I really do hope we can fill up these classes, I'd love to meet you!

Monday, April 05, 2010

Bonnie & Marilyn Go To White Castle!


No, it's not the movie version, but when I told my son I went to White Castle he laughed. I never saw the "Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle" movie myself...maybe it's a good thing, but he found it comical that I would go there!

You've never truly been to the Midwest unless you've BEEN to White Castle. The burgers are small, so they come in groups of 2 or 3....or 12. *LOL* I liked them! I would have been FINE with just ONE..but you can't let the other go to waste, so it went to waist instead :cÞ

I think the most fun was the fact that we joked about it for a couple days before we actually WENT. We were on the way to the airport when Marilyn made a turn, headed toward the White Castle, missed the drive way, had to go up the road and follow a semi truck into the gas station before we could turn around and head back!

Actually eating a meal there with these gals was EPIC. Truth be told tho, it was the company that was the most fun!

*Post Script* This is in no way a sponsored ad for White Castle! When I got an email suggesting such, I busted out laughing....it was just a place we wanted to go, that I had never been before...plain and simple!

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Easter....Glorious Spring!


This is the view across the street at the top of my driveway! Isn't it WONDERFUL!? I wish it would last longer, within a couple of days those blossoms are going to be on the ground, you can almost hear the rumble of leaves trying to push their way out and open up.

Do you find yourself changing with the seasons when it comes to your quilting too? In spring, are you dying to work with springy colors that let the light in? I do. When it's lovely like this out, I have a harder time wanting to work with warm colors like browns.....I just want to capture the yellow of the forsythia, the blue of the sky (oh, look at that SKY!!!)the pink of the cherry blossoms, the green of the new emerging leaves. I'm just drawn to them.....

And then when it turns fall...oh those rich fall colors creep their way into my patchwork again. I'm glad I live in a place with 4 seasons!

But for now....I'm rejoicing in the arrival of Spring, the newness of everything, including the amazing fact that it is LIGHT LATER..which makes me feel like I can get so much more done during a day...More Quilting...More fabric play...just MORE!

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Happy Easter Eve!


This pic came in my email with no link as to where it was found, simply with the heading "Gigantic Ukrainian Easter Egg" Turns out it is not Ukrainian at all, but resides in Canada! More HERE.

Isn't this amazing? Oh..right away I'm having quilt palpitations! Just look at this thing! (Click to get it BIG)

Living here in NC...the closest we get to this is driving down I-85 toward Spartanburg SC where the giant water tower looks like a peach! That said..if you pass it at the right angle, it really does more closely resemble a huge hiney. :c| But then that gives me the giggles too!



Thank You Petra!!


When I arrived home from Indiana, there was a box on the doorstep!

Not a big box, but not a small one either! At first glace, I thought it must be the books I had media mailed home from Baton Rouge (That have still not shown up!!)But there was a customs form on the box....and I got all excited!

The name Petra was on the box. Do I know anyone named Petra? Yes, but this wasn't the same Petra, this box had been mailed from Germany!

I quickly took it into the kitchen to open it up and see what is inside....a lovely wrapped box with a long type written letter telling me what was in the present, and why it was being sent to me!

Petra said:
Dear Bonnie,
I read and enjoy your blog now for over two years and it is great fun and information. It seems to me that you like things which evoke memories of childhood and life as it used to be many years ago.

Therefore I decided to share some of my memories with you. When I was a little girl my mother always baked a cake for Easter which had the form of a lamb. This wonderful smelling lamb had eyes made of little raisins and was dusted with icing sugar. It sat in a basket filled with hay and pinned in its shoulder was a small embroidered flag with Christian symbols on it. When the lamb appeared on the sideboard (I never saw my mother baking it) I knew that Easter was to come soon! (And naturally the Easter bunny with his eggs and chocolates.)

Nowadays I bake biscuit lambs myself and I like it very much. I have inherited some old moulds from my grannies which are really beautiful.

I'm not sure if the custom of making biscuit lambs is known in the US, but if not, perhaps you like to try it. Therefore I packed a little parcel for you.

My Auntie gave one of her moulds to me many years ago. It is not so old as those I got from my grannies but it is in good condition and gives the cake a nice form.

On the backside of the box of the mould you will find a recipe in English.. I never tried it. I have my own one, which you will find included.

And I have also embroidered a little flag! On the front side you can see the paschal lab, on teh rear side there is a blooming heart and the abbreviation IHS for "In Hoc Signo Vinces"

I hope you like it and enjoy a wonderful Easter with your family.

With love from Germany,
Petra


Oh my GOODNESS! I read the letter, opened up the package and found the mould in it's original box! just LOOK!! Isn't this the most fun thing for Easter? So guess what I will "ATTEMPT" to do tomorrow! I will probably end up with lamb PARTS because I am severely challenged at getting any cake to come out of a pan in one piece..*LOL* But I will try!

Thank you Petra! This is such a special gift and I will cherish it for Easters to come! (I mailed your books today too so be looking for them soon!)

SO..this got me thinking! What Easter (or Passover) customs do you have that were passed down to you from your beloved relatives?

Friday, April 02, 2010

The Aftermath.....

On the way home from the airport in Greensboro, we took a detour through High Point, the closest town to me, and where I do the majority of my shopping, banking, my gym is there, etc....It's 7 miles from me to the Walmart :c)

Sunday night we had a HUGE hail and rain storm, and lots of tornado warnings. I had to leave so early to catch my flight to Indiana, that I didn't know exactly where the tornados hit, but they were right where my usual jaunt takes me through home!

Someone...some CRAZY someone....has uploaded a video captured while they were stuck in traffic on the interstate as the tornado came through. It's just terrifying to think this came so close to my house, less than 6 miles.

We saw a lot of roof damage, trees just bent in half and snapped over, garages obliterated....detached garages lifted off their foundations and pushed into the house....it's a MESS!

There were a lot of people doing clean up as we drove by. Temps today reached 84, and they are going to be doing clean up for a while. I don't know if there were any fatalities, but there was a report of a trailer house being lifted up and tossed into a POND with 4 people in it.

Don't mess with Mother Nature, she is a force to be reconned with!

So my bags are in the house from the car..the animals have been loved on, the mail gone through and I'm absolutely pooped! I'm home for a while, so within the next few days I *AM* going to finish that LAST SHORT SIDE of the Extreme border and get that ready to start quilting.

I've had a fun time playing with the Compu Quilter, but it's now been several months since I have freehanded anything and I'm thinknig...yes...I'm thinking....I might want to play with this one. There are some rather large triangle areas in the center of the quilt that might benefit from some special attention rather than just marching a panto across it.

That said....There are some gorgeous pantos just waiting to be tried out too, and they make my quilts look SO GOOD. So, we'll have to think on this one a bit!

Quickie Quote!

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful”


William Morris


This just gave me a free pass to keep all the fabric I want! Wooot! (But now..how do I categorize the dust bunnies? Are they beautiful...or useful? Hmmmmm!

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Texas Braid Workshop!

This was such a fun fun class!

Not only is Bits & Pieces a wonderful quilt shop, but the classroom space is AWESOME....

The fun of this class was seeing what fabrics everyone brought to sew into their braids! One gal was so funny, she actually had a DRESS she made in the 1960s from some "Goldie Hawn Laugh-In" kind of fabric....it was so hilarious that she gave everyone pieces of it, and the challenge was that you HAD to sew this hideous fabric in SOMEWHERE in your braids. The funny thing is...as bad as that fabric was....it reminds me so much of the Amy Butler fabric that is so popular today! It just goes to show you that fabric does NOT have an expiration date! (But maybe sometimes it should! *LOL*)

It was fun to see everyone trading to create more variety in their braids....lots of laughing, joking, pedal to the metal sewing...and class went all the way til 5pm!

Here is the slide show!


Crown Point IN 2010
Those of you on rss readers, you will probably have to come to the blog page to click the link to view it...you won't want to miss it!

After class, we went to a lovely Mexican place that had the BEST and BIGGEST Chimichanga type dishes I've ever seen. Just look at this bad boy! It had steak, cheese, beans, grilled onion and peppers inside....wrapped in a flour tortilla, and pan fried instead of deep fried like a regular Chimi....I forget what this was called, but it was enough for TWO..and I feel like I won't be hungry again for at least two weeks!


Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Beautiful Day in Crown Point, IN!

The weather has been SO lovely, it reached over 70 degrees today in Crown Point!

Before I go into any description, please, don't anyone ever tell me to "Knock 'em dead" before giving a lecture, okay? Half way through my lecture, we had someone pass out, konk their head when they hit the floor! 911 was called, the ambulance came, the lady's hubby came....they were whisked off to the hospital....

We took a short intermission, and then we started back up where we left off! But it was really more excitement than I bargained for.

This morning we were told that the passer-outer is doing better, but was kept for observation. I hope the tests will give them the info they need to get her well on the road to recovery!

That said...if you are GOING to pass out....let it be at a quilt guild meeting, where my quilts are there to roll up and place under your head, under your knees, and to cover your body and keep you warm from the effects of shock! Can you imagine if she fell at home alone? There are benefits to coming to guild meetings and being surrounded by those we can count on to take care of us!

After the guild meeting, we had a short lunch, and a half day String Spiderweb workshop! It went too fast.....felt like we were barely getting going when it was time to pack up and go. But never fear...these women are gluttons for punishment, and quite a few of them were also in TODAY's class.....those who can bravely begin two UFOs in one week are troopers!


These are a few pics I took around down town Crown Point yesterday. The stain glass windows are from the inside of the old house turned restaurant that we had dinner at. It was AMAZING! I had some pasta thing with portobello mushrooms, smoked chicken, sundried tomatoes, sauteed in olive oil and garlic and other yumminess. MMMM!

This building used to be the courthouse, but it is now shops inside. There are several antique malls and shops downtown and we had fun wandering through and enjoying walks down memory lane. All of us agreeing that something is only antique if it is OLDER than we are. If this fad occurred during our life span, then it could not be old enough by any means!

The only thing I am leaving with from the antiquing run is a crocheted hat pincushion from the 1930s or so..it was just too cute, and has a loop for hanging. No quilts are coming home with me this time.....

But Crown Point has a wonderful Quilt Shop called Bits & Pieces....and I did find a fabric bundle to come home with me!! This whole bundle was only $10!! All different sizes of odds and ends, but all in various shades of brown. There are some GREAT pieces in here....yep, leave it to me...to buy more scraps!! *LOL*

It's been a wonderful trip here, and I'd love to come back some day!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Delinquent Author...



It took an email from Subee to remind me that my "paper piecing tutorial" (for those who didn't know how to paper piece the tree bases to the CRABAPPLES block from Adventures With Leaders & Enders"( STILL SAID UNDER CONSTRUCTION!!

Sheesh. 3 months after release and I forgot to finish it?!

So guess what I just did?

If you have wanted to paper piece your tree bases, but didn't know how to go about doing it, you can check for the tutorial HERE.

It's nothing fancy, but I hope you get the jist of it. There are many books available on the subject as well as magazines and websites that probably can get better photos than I can. Still, I hope this gives you an idea of how I work!