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Monday, May 09, 2011

Auntie’s Antics!


It was one of “THOSE” nights.

One of those where I was tucked into bed by about 10:30pm or so, thumbing through quilt magazines, drooling over antique quilts, fabrics, colors, textures, stitches…..and off to dreamland I went--

Only to be rudely awakened by NOTHING AT ALL----No reason, whatsoever ----at 3:45am.

AnnoyedToss, Turn, Toss, Turn, ((If you get up, it’s all over, you know it, don’t you?)) Toss, Turn, Toss, Turn.

OH! ALL RIGHT!!

I’ve been up since 3:45am. Quilting. At least I’ve been productive, right?

The picture you see above is representative of how I feel as I type this..No, I don’t have a new kitty, but after seeing this guy I wish I did!

So what am I quilting on?? Teehee!!

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Just quilting through these whacky combos of fabrics makes me giddy! Maybe that is why I couldn’t sleep? The quilt is begging to be finished? Or…it is giving me nightmares? Nope –I’m definitely over the moon for this quilt!

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See the M&Ms right in the middle? Whooooo!

So the quilting is now done…and I’m ready for a NAP! But before I head off to take one..I wanted to introduce you to someone special to me:

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This, Y’all, is Little Miss Elizabeth Caitlynn! She was born just last week to my brother Mike and his wife Nicole, and weighed in at 8lbs 2 oz!! I tell you, she will be ready for pre-school next week! She is that brilliant!

And you can see what stole my heart with this picture, other than that crop of dark dark hair? She is sleeping on the Little Monkey quilt that Auntie Bonnie made for her!

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I am assuming this is Mike’s finger in his daughter’s mouth. Why he is doing this, I have no idea..but I assume he washed his hands first!

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My handsome brother is already wrapped around his baby daughter’s finger….Isn’t family wonderful?

And now…about that NAP!?

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Home for the Weekend!


You know, it doesn’t happen very often that I’m not teaching somewhere on a Saturday, or using a Sunday as my travel day to/from somewhere. I decided a couple years ago that I was going to try to schedule the week around Mother’s Day off as a treat for myself…and it has been great to be home this week!

The one hard part about the scheduling is, fitting in all the stuff I want to do in the amount of time there is to do it. For instance, I’ve got a guild local to me….within an hour’s drive away, that has been trying to schedule me for some time for JUST a Saturday when I could just come and do a workshop. Just down the road…would be fun…easy access, fun day, sleep in my own bed without a lot of travel, but I would have had to give up YESTERDAY in order to do it, and sometimes a girl just needs her own Saturdays, no matter how badly she wants to spend time with the guild ladies down the road.

There is not another place through the whole year that that Saturday for them will fit. It’s crazy! So now, we are looking at any Fridays…I sent them to the calendar to see if any openings I have will coincide with openings that THEY have --- if they can narrow it down for me it helps.

But in the mean time….I tried to not feel too guilty that I was able to spend time this week working on my own things on my own time frame in my own basement!

I took time this week to grab dinner out with Lisa – and we took Shelby for a walk afterwards!

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On our walk up the street, we were approached by this orange and white fella who was VERY curious about just what Shelby was! Shelby IS kind of cat sized you know?

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Things were going along just fine! Little orange kitty let us pet him, was very affectionate and not afraid of us at all….and Shelby was ready to get into the act and see what all of this was about as well….

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They got closer and closer, just about to touch noses --- lots of sniffing going on…..

Aaaaaannnndddd----

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YIKES! I guess that was close enough! The kitty hissed, reached out a paw….and the blur of Shelby you see is her getting the HECK outta Dodge! LOL!

We really enjoyed our evening walk, and made plans for Lisa and Karen to come to my house to sew the next day ---

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Morning arrived, and my doorbell starting ringing! Lisa set up her FW at my sewing desk and started piecing on her project, a shop sample in blues..

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After the previous night’s shenanigans, Shelby was going to stay close to “MOM” under the desk!

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Karen and I loaded her 4 patch scrap quilt in the machine….and commenced to quilting! She has a house guest coming, and you know, there is nothing to spruce up a guest room like a new quilt on the bed, especially when the house guest is an in-coming guild teacher!

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We used a variegated purple thread, and the 4 petalled posie pantograph called LAVISH by Hermoine Agee of Lorien Quilting was perfect for spring!

It was so perfect, that I also used it to quilt the CRUISE QUILT!

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Doesn’t it look pretty on the aqua blue border!?

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And I’ll give you just a sneak preview of the corner treatment..LOL! I’ve worked it out with Sew Many Places, that the kit I provide will be called a “STARTER KIT!” And just like Stone Soup, by the time we all bring some extra fabric and share with each other, we’ll have a good mix for the center which will be very scrappy, just my style!

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Even those aqua cow spots don’t look so bad when quilted! LOL!

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Neither does that art deco aqua and peach thing on the other side of the hopscotch blocks! I love the whole texture that the quilting gives…..

The binding is ON…it just needs an evening or two of hand stitching down…and I’ve got a hanging sleeve to make…a good way to use up MORE of those aqua cow spots maybe?!

Today has also been a great Mother’s Day. DH and I headed out to Concord Mills to use a gift certificate that was nearing expiration date. It’s over an hour away, and I stitched hexagons in the car the whole way. Nice eh?

We got there too early! They didn’t open until 1pm, and it was 11:20----what to do? We went and watched a matinee movie! We saw Source Code, and it was quite interesting. After that we had no trouble finding things to spend the gift certificate on. I got new summer sandals! Happy Mothers Day Feet to me!

We enjoyed a nice lunch at Texas Land and Cattle….and I napped all the way home. Here I am, 5:40pm, a late blog post, but I’ve enjoyed this weekend so much.

Happy Mother’s Day, Everyone!

Saturday, May 07, 2011

And The Two Winners Are~~


It’s Saturday morning! And you know what that means? I have two winners who are about to each receive a copy of “100 blocks vol 3” by Quiltmaker Magazine!

This was really REALLY a great blog tour….I had fun visiting the other blogs on the tour as well, some that were new to me. What a great and amazing tool the internet can be! My life is so enriched by connectivity to wonderful women who inspire me, lift me, encourage me, keep me laughing!

Our first winner is Linda in PA! She has been contacted by email since her email address was available in her blogger profile.

Linda’s comment was:

I really like your block. I am using your scrap saver system and am enjoying having useable strips and blocks ready to sew. I am also using your leaders and enders technique. My double delight quilt top is just waiting for me to decide if I want to add a plain or a pieced border. Thanks for all the great mysteries and quilt patterns that you give us. Thanks for the chance to win a copy of this magazine.

Linda, send me an email with your snail mail address, and I’ll be passing it on to the folks at Quiltmaker Magazine. Your copy will be coming direct to you from them!

My second winner is Teresa in Music City!

Teresa wrote:

Congrats on having a block in the magazine again this year! Your block has SEW much character!!! I love the way it has the potential to give that secondary design.... everything you do has that deeper level. Like the fabric to honor Oscar - such a special touch for a special kitty! =^..^=

I’ve also contacted Teresa by email, and her signed copy will be mailed from my house to hers as soon as I have her snail mail address!

Congrats everyone! This has been a great drawing, with 538 comments!

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Don’t forget…if you didn’t win, you can still pick up your copy of 100 blocks, vol 3 either by ordering it online, or check local book stores such as Barnes & Noble. It hits newsstands this week! Don’t delay though, all of the previous issues have SOLD OUT in no time. You can still get the earlier versions in digital format from Quiltmaker, so you won’t miss out on any of the previous patterns.

And the weekend continues Chez Quiltville! I’m in the studio kicking up a mess of creativity! Scraps have been sorted, sliced, diced, kitted up for future projects! You know, they don’t look half bad once you iron them and cut them to size! AMAZING! :cD

The cruise quilt is going on my machine today --

And now that things are finally under way, and are starting to feel REAL!! ((As in, her travel arrangements are made, so she can’t back out now!!)) I get to share the cruise excitement with my good buddy Lori from Humble Quilts! Lori is coming as my assistant and I am SO PUMPED to be spending this time with her.

((Yes, It’s my 30th wedding anniversary and I’m spending it on a cruise with my quilting buddy instead of with my DH! LOL! But he is coming with me in November instead, as it works better for his job!))

Lori and I go way way way back, to somewhere around 1994? 1995? To a little old email list serve called INTERQUILT, way back in the day. Any of you remember that list serve? We had to pay $20 a year to be on that list. Yes. We paid money to have daily flame wars in our inboxes..LOL! But it was our first internet contact, and our friendship has grown over the years. I’ll be retreating with her the week of the Sister’s Oregon show in July – we do this every year! AND…she is coming on the Caribbean Cruise with me in August/Sept!

At last count, there were still just a few spaces left..If you want to join us, contact Sew Many Places! There is more info in the Cruisin With Bonnie tab at the top of this blog!

Friday, May 06, 2011

Christ Church, Philadelphia ((And Betsy Ross too!))


I was born in Minnesota and raised in San Jose California. My boys were both born in Oregon, in towns that had their beginnings in the mid to late 1800s. To refer to something as “OLD” there has a completely different meaning than what it is to refer to something “OLD” on the East Coast! I learned that when we moved to South Carolina and visited Charleston for the first time.

The dates didn’t just start in the 1800s, they started 300 years before then! And loving history like I do, I found it fascinating to learn the details of what was founded when.

I get chills when I visit buildings that have been around since the early 1700s, such as Christ Church in Philadelphia.

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Can you read this plaque? The bells that proclaimed our Independence rang from here. They rang for freedom on July 4, 1776, but they had hung there since 1754 – 22 years!

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What I think is amazing is that this is still an active church, not just a historical site.

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I loved the light from the windows inside, and the box pews!

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This was the George Washington Family pew box..the name is on the brass plaque:

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I sat down for a minute and just pondered and thought about what life was like then…The patriots didn’t KNOW they were going to win. They could have just as easily lost? How different would life be now if that were the case?

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The light was kind of bright at the front altar. I really liked that the church was not overwhelmingly overrun with stained glass. The clear windows let in so much more light.

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Back of the church toward the organ loft. I wish someone had been playing. I would have loved to listen to that!

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As was the custom in the day, there are graves in the floor of the church, down the aisles. I love the backwards “N” in November! This parishioner died in 1734.

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The grave of John Penn. Anyone know what the “XLI” at the top means? And in the picture before this one it says “LII” at the top. I have no clue….interesting? huh?

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This is my picture from across the street…but it doesn’t show you the steeple like the picture at the beginning of the post does….What an awesome visit!

From here, it wasn’t too far to head down to Betsy Ross’s house….

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That’s it folks! It’s just a tiny little thing, stuck in between more modern buildings! I almost couldn’t get this picture, there was a huge tour bus parked in front of it!

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This tour did charge a fee, but it was worth it for me……It’s a self guided thing, you read the signs on the walls to see what is what. No picture taking was allowed. She was a remarkable woman, and I bet she would love to see what we do with fabric and machines NOW!

Next Stop? Elphreth’s Alley!

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Elphreth’s Alley is America’s OLDEST residential street! And it is still lived in today!

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The row houses are adorable, to say the least…..it was just like stepping back in time to walk down this street!

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Look at the cute red cellar doors!

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I loved the display of window boxes and blooming garden containers!

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Hard to get persepctive here too, the street is very narrow and the two rows of houses face each other….

This was in walking distance of where I was meeting up with Elsie Campbell and her son for dinner!

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It was the perfect end to a perfect day of sight seeing, and we enjoyed a terrific Mediterranean meal and talking about everything we could come up with! Her son was a real trooper for hanging out with us “old ladies” and we really had a great time.

I loved this visit to Philly, and I know I will be back. Already there have been so many posts saying things like “Where are your pics of the Rocky statue!?” “Did you see the Love Statue??” and I know there were other things I missed that I will have to catch next time….and I will!

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Feelin’ Down & Out?! Who, ME?!


I seem to have hit a brick wall here at home…by yesterday morning when I woke up, there was a distinct tickle running down the back of my throat….

A quick couple of hours to get caught up on book orders and paperwork, and off I went to the Post Office, followed by a trip to CVS for some airborne and some cold-eeze and a stop at the hole-in-the-wall Chinese place for my cure-all of EVERYTHING~~A large container of Hot n Sour Soup.

I so RARELY get sick that this has really ticked me off! I don’t have TIME to have an elephant on my chest taking up residence. I don’t have time to sit around with a box of tissues and feel sorry for myself. I need this to be gone…..I am headed to Tyler, TX next week!

Besides, Karen is coming over tomorrow to put a quilt in the machine, and that means that I need the cruise quilt loaded, quilted and unloaded before she gets here. Maybe I should wait a day..the machine needs to be empty when she gets here :c)

There are errands to run….some of which may wait a day or two, but I am NOT passing up on the 90 minute massage I have scheduled for this afternoon. There is a nagging knot in my right hamstring that also needs to go away.

So there you have it, my whiny complaint for today, but it won’t keep me down for long.

See this wrapper?!?

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I LOVE how Halls cough drops have little messages of encouragement on them! This one says:

Don’t wait to get started!

Get Back in the game!

Tough is your middle name!

Flex your “can do” muscle! ((Okay, this one had me laughing out loud…and thinking in other directions! LOL!))

Fire up those engines!

Impress yourself today!

You’ve survived tougher!

Seize the day!

I wanted to post more Philly pics, but I’m running short on time this morning, and Karen is coming tomorrow, so some things are hitting the back burner until later. YES! I did go to the Betsy Ross House! And YES! I did sit in George Washington’s family pew at Christ Church..and took wonderful pics..but….another day!

However, I did come home to THIS:

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The old roof is off, new plywood has been laid, the skylights removed…and the weather proofing put in place! We are well on our way to having our new red metal roof!

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The light was kind of funky toward evening, but it’s going to be great. I am hoping for red shutters eventually too. The house is wood sided, very much like a cabin in the woods type of cottage, and I think that will need a re-staining at some point too.

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This is the view from the back, ladders and all…and the blue tarp is covering the woodpile. The gazebo houses our hot tub, and it will also get a new red metal roof so it will all match….

I want to thank everyone who stopped by to visit yesterday! This drawing isn’t over yet! I’m keeping the comments open until the morning of May 7th when the whole blog tour has ended! So click back to yesterday’s post and leave a comment there if you want to be in the drawing for a free copy of 100 blocks, volume 3!

Back to the quilting machine….Elephant on the chest be danged!