Thursday, May 31, 2018

Gone Quiltin’ in Jackson!

Yesterday’s flight to Jackson, MS  was a breeze!

2 short flights of a bit more than an hour each – one to Atlanta, and then on to Jackson – the only time I was tapping my foot was when we found ourselves parked out on the tarmac in Atlanta waiting for weather to pass and being slightly rerouted on our flight path to Mississippi. 

That was no bother.  I had a busy bag to keep just just that – BUSY.

And all the while traveling, I kept humming THIS little ditty in my head (And sometimes quietly out loud to myself!)

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Quilt-Cam & A Quiltmaker Gift-Away!

This is a bit of a “Gotta get it in there” double-duty post kind of morning!

Quilt-cam last night had me scrambling to get the rest of everything done before heading off to bed.

As is usual before any flying trip – sleep was interrupted and not very deep.  I’m so excited to be heading to Mississippi this morning.

There are a BAZILLION emails that came in during Quilt-Cam that I will try to address during airport waiting and layover time.  But if I don’t get back to you right away, please bear with me!

My new Quiltmaker July/Aug copies have arrived and I’m so excited to see what is inside – and I can’t put this Gift-Away off because, well just because!

So this is a bit of a Gift-Away-Quilt-Cam-Combo.  You don’t have a problem with that, do you?

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

In Search Of…..Chairs?

**NOTE** Quilt-Cam announcement at the bottom of post – don’t skim read!

Isn’t it amazing how something you rarely give a second thought to – becomes front and center, and it is all you can think about?


Who thinks much about chairs, really?  We sit in them every day.  They are in front of our sewing machines, at our dining tables, and living spaces.  You might even have a cozy chair in the corner of your bedroom, but have you really stopped to count up all of the chairs in your abode?

Each chair has it’s own purpose – either workspace, kitchen space, dining space, living space – and oh, let’s not forget about front porch space!

Monday, May 28, 2018

Memorial Day 2018

Guess who has a new favorite photo-op spot for quilt photography??

The perfect white railing with a burbling creek beyond!

No cows were in sight yesterday – they’ve wandered down around the bend in search of greener pastures.

This quilt, which as of yet has no name, may be winging its way to Quiltmaker shortly for appearance in an upcoming issue.  And then on to a future book after that – and it was so fun to throw it over the porch rail for a couple of shots.

Hooray for FINALLY getting this binding and label stitched down and completed.

I took the last stitches while we were still watching Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Jeff had fallen asleep on the floor, and I covered him with this newest finish.  Finished quilts need to be slept under - immediately!  It's good luck, don't you know?

Sunday, May 27, 2018

So Much Weekend Goodness!

I put a couple of hours worth of  quilting stitches into my Oak Leaf quilt last night.

You know what this means?

It means that there is nothing left in the binding queue for a while, and lest my hands be found idle – this is next to my comfy chair at the cabin for TV watching time.

Son Jeff made is way up to the cabin last evening – surprising us with a DVD – a flash back favorite from his childhood – Charlie & The Chocolate Factory!

There is a story that goes with our family's love of this movie – Besides being MY FAVORITE as a child (Yes, I still know all of the words to all of the songs.) Jeff played this movie on VHS tape over and over and over until it wore out and we had to buy another.  We used to quote lines from this movie back and forth to each other all of the time, and still do.

“I want a ___fill in the blank___ and I want it NOW!”

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Taking Time to Sew!

It’s been a while.

It feels like forever.

It felt like I was never going to be able to find stitching time again with so much to do at the Inn.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m so excited about everything –I am being pulled in so many different ways with “I am so excited to do…..”  and “I really wanna do….”  And they are all good things.

But to center my soul, there is one thing I need more than any other.

Some of this:

Friday, May 25, 2018

Jason and Mama–Sadie & Ponies!

Yesterday was a mother/son day – and Sadie came along for the ride.

It’s not often that I get to spend a solo day with my son Jason, and since the weather was nice and cool (only about 63 degrees on top of the mountain as compared to 90 down in Columbia SC where he lives)  - we wandered on up the road a few scenic miles to Grayson Highlands State Park to hike a bit on the Appalachian Trail.

I would have to say we felt like slackers with our street clothes, no gear and simple water bottles for our day hike.

We met a man coming down the trail past us and stopped to chat.  He has been on the trail since April, starting in Georgia, with many many miles left to go to do the whole thing.

After hiking we stopped for lunch at Grayson Highlands General Store (more on that later) and met a gal who was restocking her backpack with necessities at the store.  As of yesterday they had reached their 500 mile mark, also working their way toward Maine.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Road Trippin’ for the Inn!

Isn’t this just the most lush gorgeous green?

This is the laneway that leads from the cabin to the road, a rolling hilly hair-pin of nearly 1/4 miles through the woods.

Every time I come up here it is different.  It is beautiful in all seasons, and as each season changes to the next I sigh and tell myself “THIS is my favorite season.”  I love them all.

But in the spring and summer when the leaves are full out – it’s magical.

I can’t see mountains in the distance anymore – but that’s okay.  They will come back with the fall.

What I get now is the sound of murmuring streams and babbling brooks tumbling down the mountainside as they make their way to meet the creek that runs along the side of the road.

Nature’s best “water feature”  and I don’t have to plumb for it!

Where was I heading?  About 2 hours away to meet up with Kim for lunch out with she and her granddaughter (who is also a quilter at 15!) and then to Kim’s house to pack up some wonderful gifts that are coming to live at Quiltville Inn.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Our May 2018 Quilty Box Winners!

You’ve been waiting around all day for me to get to this, haven’t you?

Yes, it was supposed to happen last night, but my evening was hijacked by dinner out and multitudinous errand running.

Today was just as full – I picked up a van full of goodness down in Mooresville (Can’t wait to show you tomorrow) and made it back to Quiltville Inn to off load that by 6pm – did some cleaning and setting up and organizing (and watched the cows down around the creek bed along with some honking noisy geese adding to the chorus of mooooooo) and made it back to the cabin just a bit ago.

And son JASON is on his way up from Columbia, SC – so that has me in a bit of a tizzy as well.  Son time is always a joyous occasion.

But let’s get this done!

Quilty Angels Amongst Us!

I know you think I’m a deadbeat – NO Quilty Box drawing happened last night!

When asked to go out to dinner, I’m no fool.

Of course – that means small town restaurant appeal: Great home style cooking served up with a side of sweet southern drawl and a tall iced tea with lemon.

Only the place we were going had a sign on the door “We will be closed for family vacation between this date and this date.”

Again – small town living!  All of the employees also got family vacation time.  In this day and age of employment, it is pretty much unheard of.

We ended up at our favorite Mexican place – and then the real reason for the “Would you like to go to dinner?” invitation was revealed.

“I need to make a stop at Lowes…..”

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

What a Van Load of Stuff!

Yesterday was a “Pack the van with as much quilty stuff as you have room for!” kind of day.

I’ve been going through my house and selecting things that have hung over doors and on walls that will add a touch of quilty whimsy to our retreat surroundings.

I don’t want to welcome quilters to a sterile environment, I want this to feel like I am welcoming them into my home – so much of my home is going to find a place within the Inn.

This sign has hung over my front door for the past 10 years and I believe it to be so completely true.

“What we make with our Hands, We hold in our Hearts.”

I’ve placed this for now above the front foyer doors against the transom window, but who knows where it will eventually land.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Manchester’s Mega Epic Show & Share!

The end of our lunch break in class is always an event -

Those in the know (because we don’t announce it formally!) know to bring any Quiltville finishes or other quilts they wish to show.  Folks rarely need more than 30 minutes to eat, so the last half of our lunch break is filled with so much quilty eye candy and quilters get to introduce themselves, state where they are from – and we had many from all over the Northeast, as well as a visitor from California!

This is Jeanne – Jeanne of the aqua WHITE gorgeous machine I shared yesterday!

And her quilts are truly phenomenal!  We all gasped when she unfolded her Perkiomen Daydreams quilt from my book Scraps & Shirttails!

The postage stamp squares just danced before our eyes.  100’’ x 100’’ there are 10,000 squares in the quilt!

Don’t let the sheer size scare you, it’s strip pieced from 5 different easy strip sets, and it is all about the color placement – no triangles involved!

Sunday, May 20, 2018

A Day for Box Kite Beauty!

Here I am capturing all of the smiles and memories of my quick but jam packed visit with the Amoskeag Quilters in Manchester, New Hampshire!

Such a positive group of quilters – willing to throw themselves into new skill sets with open minds, embracing the scrappy chaos and all that comes with it!

Our numbers were full up at 57, and yet it didn’t feel crowded at all as the room space at the church we were using for our workshop was roomy, airy and full of light from windows on both sides of the room.

There was room to spread out, plenty of cutting table space, and thanks to Kathy’s hubby who offered to rewire the room at the church so we wouldn’t blow circuits (What a way to say thank you for the use of the space – an electrical upgrade!) there were no power blips at all.

I wonder if he would like to come down to Virginia and rewire the Quilting Quarters at Quiltville Inn??!

It was just a bang up fun of a day….from beginning to end.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

A Jamestown Landing Day in Manchester, NH!

Oh, the laughter!!  SO many hugs and smiles – catching up with folks I haven’t seen since the last time I was in the beautiful state of New Hampshire, FIVE years ago!

We booked these dates 5 years back when I was here the last time.  I thought it would never get here, but it did….and we’ve been having the best time since wheels touched tarmac on Thursday morning.

I just had to take a photo of this "lunch box” style tote…what a crack up!

Of course, we are not taking this all seriously, but I can bet you The Hubster would have no problem wearing a cheddar colored T-shirt sporting the slogan “I got a new lawn mower for my wife – Great trade, huh?!”

(And as of yesterday it was still pouring down rain in Southwest Virginia, and there is little chance of that lawn getting mowed any day soon – and it continues to grow…..and grow and grow!)

Friday, May 18, 2018

May 2018 Quilty Box Gift-Away!

Good morning from beautiful Manchester, New Hampshire!

I thought today would be a very good day to throw THIS little double gift-away goodie up for grabs in this morning’s post -

It’s the May 2018 Quilty Box & Quilty Box Mini Gift-Away and you are going to have a ball with all that is included!

What is a Quilty Box?
Here are some highlights to keep in mind:

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Show & Share from Shoreline, WA!

I’m thinking about where I was a week ago today – spending my last workshop with the Quilters Anonymous gals in Shoreline, Washington outside of Seattle!

Oh, the quilts that came out to play during my quick stay with these ladies – they knocked my socks off!

This is Dianna and her beautiful En Provence quilt!  She altered the colors to use her own stash, and her result is stunning.

Can you see the little inset border of squares in pink?  SUCH a great touch!

Often times it is the border that brings the whole thing together, as in this case – another En Provence:

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Fly, Birdie, Fly!

Can you even SEE this house now that the trees are leafed out?

The changing of the seasons is definitely amazing.  I have lived through 56 spring times, and the “unfolding of the green” always captivates me.

The world just knows what it is supposed to do when it is supposed to do it.

No one has to tell the trees to leaf out – they just do.

And as for the title of this post ---well, that’s another story!

I was in the kitchen scrubbing cupboards (oh, so many cupboards!) when I heard a banging commotion coming from one of the upstairs bedrooms.

There was a storm getting ready to rage outside, was a wild wind whipping a bedroom door shut?  What WAS that sound?

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

On the Way to Moving In!

Hello from Virginia!

It took longer to get here yesterday than I thought – but by mid afternoon I was pulling up into the drive at Quiltville Inn, ready to unload the first of many loads to come.

My first stop yesterday of course was the car dealership – Moby needed a 30,000 mile spa treatment.  All systems flushed, everything gone through – to the painful tune of more than $400.00.  OUCH!

I kept telling myself that this is what it takes to keep a vehicle running well for safety’s sake – and I’d rather pay for maintenance than a repair bill down the road which could be more – but OUCH.

And while I waited:

Monday, May 14, 2018

A Mother’s Day of Stitching, Kitting & Reflecting…

It’s nearly the end of a hexie era!

I think I’ve spent nearly the last 5 to 6 years working on this quilt top as my “on the go” project, busy bag in hand for many travels from international to domestic.  It’s seen SO many countries, witnessed so many memories!

And it isn’t that this project isn’t going to see anything else – there is still a lot to come after I finish attaching the last half of the last border.

I’m looking forward to many happy evenings of stitching with my feet up in the recliner or comfy stitching chair at the cabin.

Maybe I’ll be stitching on this during evening visits with the retreaters at Quiltville Inn

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Mother’s Day 2018

Window (booth) shopping on a Saturday home!

After being gone for a work week there were plenty of errands to be run yesterday.

Could I help it if one of those runs put me within proximity (Proximity being a bit over/under 10 miles! LOL!) of a favorite BIG antique mall?

I had determined once my flight hit the tarmac in Greensboro on Friday night that this would be a "Mother’s Day Weekend OFF” (The first Mother’s Day I hadn’t been traveling to or from guilds ON Mother’s Day in years) and no work-work was to happen.

Regular house keeping errands are NOT work.  Not like work-work.  Grocery stores, picking up something at Lowes, dropping off something somewhere else – it’s a chance to be out and about and reconnect with this area I call home.

And in between it all, what’s ONE antique mall stop?

Saturday, May 12, 2018

One Hexie Short of the Last Border!

How can it be that I missed just ONE neutral hexie on the way home from Seattle yesterday?

I laid this out this morning, so pleased with myself to have this border finally done and – whammo!

Not that it won’t be an easy fix, it’s the principle of the thing!

I thought that I had finished shortly before landing in Detroit last evening, packed it all up, finished the movie on the seat back screen in front of me and settled into some relaxation and dreaming of the NEXT busy bag project.

From Detroit to Greensboro the busy bag didn’t even come out of my backpack – I had downloaded 2 episodes of Doctor Foster via Netflix to my phone and sat there in the dark watching away….all the while one hexie hole remained! HA!

Friday, May 11, 2018

Tropical Twisting Away in Shoreline WA!

Oh these girls – such a great group of ladies from the Seattle area!

We gathered together yesterday for round two of workshops with the Quilters Anonymous guild of Shoreline, WA – with Tropical Twist from the Addicted to Scraps book up on deck!

If you love strip piecing and easy stitch-and-flip corners, you’ll love this quilt pattern, an up-do from my Star Struck – more strips, more motion, more color, more fun!

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Morning Lectures and Afternoon String Blocks…

Double Duty Days can leave one a bit numb by bedtime – but oh, the quilter-connectivity they bring!

As I have noted earlier, there is a definite difference between evening guild meetings, and morning ones.  

And it’s understandable – an evening meeting at the end of a very long work day for many – dealing with traffic issues and carrying the weight of the job they just left still on their shoulders – Evening meetings are just one more thing added to an already heavy work schedule and a very long day.

Morning meetings?  All happy and smiles….greeting folks they haven’t seen since last month’s meeting, catching up on all of the goings-on, there is a reason there is “Joy in the morning….”  There has been a full night’s sleep the night before!

I’m holding here a little shout out to Desa who wasn’t able to join us for yesterday’s workshop due to illness at home, and we missed having her amongst us.  Our thoughts were with you, Desa!  I know the gals will catch you up on anything you missed, and I hope to catch you another time.

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

A Day to Play in Snohomish WA!

It was a day of small downtowns!  Of Fabulous quilt shops, antique mall wandering, much trying on of funny hats, a short walk along the river, and of “lunch out with the girls” for Thai.

Because we could!

We could do all of this because the only thing on my docket for yesterday was an evening lecture, and we had the day to ourselves.

When traveling across country, that time zone and travel time thing must be taken into consideration.  My alarm went off on Monday morning at 4:30am Eastern – or in other words 1:30am pacific time….it takes a long day of travel to make it from east to west coast, and there is always the chance luggage may not show up with me, or travel delays could make it so I was not there to speak myself should we have arranged my travel so that I fly in and lecture that same evening.

Besides.  There IS such a thing as “too tired to speak.”  So I come a day early to allow the luggage to catch up with me should it have gone AWOL (which happened on one trip to Canada!) and I’m not trying to pull off a lecture that ends at midnight east coast time – which is what my body would be saying it was.

No, it’s best to grab some adjustment time so that I can give my best to those who come to hear my presentation.  Good Sleep, some sunshine, some exercise walking around and a plethora of vintage fun, and we are good to go!

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

On Wings to Washington!

Flying over snow capped mountains is always a “stop, pay attention, and reflect” kind of thing.

The magnificence of this world we live in – the vastness. 

It’s times like this when I realize what a small little speck of dust I am on the face of this planet, and in its history.

And I am grateful for the opportunity to witness such beauty.

It is at this point that the captain comes on the overhead announcing “Ladies & gentlemen, we have started our descent into the Seattle area – flight attendants, please make the cabin ready for our arrival….”

We are almost there!

I quickly packaged up what remains of my hexie project – 1 1/2 rosettes is all that remains until border #4 is complete and ready to attach to the mothership – another spot on the timeline of my life.

Monday, May 07, 2018

Show & Share Across Georgia!

Hello from the Greensboro, NC airport!

I’m off to Seattle this morning, and typing as fast and as furiously as I can to get this out here before boarding.

My head is spinning and I’m fairly numb with this go go go thing, but I’ll be able to hopefully sleep on the plane, sew a few hexies, watch s couple of movies (Which one was it that I didn’t finish last time that I needed to finish this time?!) and find my way to Seattle by lunch time their time.

I absolutely was blown away with all of the wonderful quilts shared during my time in Georgia.  From one guild to the next….these women are prolific, and the colors and patterns just danced before my eyes.

I am so grateful that so many showed up – and remembered to bring their quilts!

And to see a completed Diamond Tile top – when mine is still only a handful of blocks?  AMAZING!

Sunday, May 06, 2018

Antiquing the Long Way Home!

A day to get from point A (Atlanta) to point B (Bonnie’s Abode!) leaves a big wide opening for many unexpecteds to happen!

Of course we knew there would be a couple of antique mall leg stretches occuring along the way, but I just kept an open mind for where one place would lead me in a different direction!

Aren’t these signs hysterical?  I had been posting about some other finds to social media, and I included this in the collage, and everyone thought I should GET THE SIGN!!!

I didn’t get the sign –but it wasn’t until I got home and sat down to edit these photos on a larger screen that I saw what the jar at the top left says.  LOL.  Ashes of Problem Employees.  So funny.

So where was I??

Saturday, May 05, 2018

And Jared Takes Another Wife….

This was our lunch break outside yesterday!

I don’t know about you, but being a south-livin’ girl for the past nearly 20 years I can look at this photo and instantly smell sunshine on pine straw.  Those of you who know pine straw know what I mean.

This is the fragrance of summer around the bend.

Temps reached about 85 degrees beyond the shade, but as the humidity hasn’t yet snuck in in early May, we made good use of the picnic tables outside of the church gym we were using as our fabulous workshop location for yesterday’s Jared Takes a Wife workshop with the quilters of Gwinnett County, Georgia.

It was such a fun gathering!  48  quilters, 4 more guild members with helping hands to press and trim and remove stitches if necessary – we had such a great time!

Friday, May 04, 2018

A Day So Full of Happy!

Have you ever had one of those days – where the day is just so full of GOOD THINGS that you just don’t know where to start in the telling of it all?

That’s how I feel this morning – how do I even begin to post? Where do I start?

How about with these two lovely ladies who were part of the force within the Gwinnett Quilters Guild in Snellville, GA who made yesterday so special.

It wasn’t just a guild lecture day – it was a day of walking in to where my presentation was going to take place, and finding the room decorated all around with the quilts others had made from my designs.

They were everywhere!

Thursday, May 03, 2018

20 Years of Star Struck Quilts!

It hit me just Tuesday during my guild presentation that one of the workshops I was scheduled to teach this week I have been teaching for 20 years.

20 years!

How does that happen??

It was while living in Burley, Idaho that the whole Scrap User’s System idea was in its early stages.  The group I belonged to was small but mighty!  And I was trying my darndest to find a way to turn the rag tag variety of donated fabrics the guild receives into beautiful charity quilts – because I still believe that the word “Charity” should mean the best of the best, not the unwanted or ugly.

It was at that time that tessellating designs were all the rage with quilters, just prior to the Y2K millennium craze.

Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Wonky Wishing on Lake Oconee!

It was a Wild & Wonky Day in Lake Oconee, GA!

It’s been a few years since I was last here – but the warm welcome of smiles and hellos, hugs, and helping hands let me know that the door is always open for me here.

Madly playing catch up with those I remember from last time, in a frenzy to get the quilts set up, backdrop hung, Quiltville Store laid out and ready for those attending – it was a whirlwind of a morning.

And then to my delight I see a huge group of gals come all the way from my old guild in Aiken, South Carolina. 

They gathered together for an early morning road trip to Oconee – just to say hi, fill the seats, and give me their support.

I am so utterly grateful for their smiling faces!

15 years of knowing those Aiken girls.  We are in touch on Facebook, but we don’t get to see each other often enough in person.

It was all too quick – After the guild presentation was over, we were setting up for an afternoon workshop and I bid the Aiken girls farewell as they headed out to lunch and whatever else they had planned for their day. 

And then we got busy with another Wonky Wishes day – the 2nd of 3 on this 3 guild tour!

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

Wonky Wishes in Cumming, GA!

Battling Atlanta area traffic on any given morning, or evening – okay, I take that back – ANY TIME OF DAY -  is a challenge to say the least.

This kind of traffic is NOT for the faint of heart!

Cumming, Georgia is located north of Atlanta on the way toward the north Georgia mountains, but that doesn’t mean it is exempt from snarly traffic.

And it was funny as I walked around the room yesterday how many times “avoiding traffic” came up into the conversation.

But we all made it, got set up, ,and got rolling – leaving the traffic problems outside the windows and spent our day exploring the fun of all things wonky.

I just love this version with blue backgrounds and cheddar stars!  And those red cornerstones?  POP, baby!