Sunday, September 30, 2018

Tummy Warming From Quilt Villa! (Recipe and More!)


It’s the very beginning of my favorite season – CROCK POT SEASON!!

When the temps turn cooler, when nights turn to two-quilt weather, and my day by day uniform of choice goes from capris and t-shirt to full length jeans and t-shirt with the addition of a favorite comfy denim shirt over the top (sleeves rolled up – gotta get down to business!) it’s also time to bring out and dust off the tried and true crock pot recipes and add a few new ones to the mix.

White Chicken Chili – just the ticket!  And I had a mostly devoured rotisserie chicken in the fridge that would be perfect for making chicken stock in the crock pot the night before. 

Saturday, September 29, 2018

I’m a Winner, You’re a Winner–YAY!

 have drawn the winners of our September Quilty Box and Quilty Box mini!

And there is more on that below – but I have been neglectful in something – I’ve heard from many of you with congratulations upon my being chosen as winner of not just one, but TWO categories in the National Quilters Circle Blogger Awards! (Best Quilting Patterns Blog and Best Overall Quilting Blog).

The announcement came September 6th – just 3 days after my brother Mark passed away, and I was reeling and making family plans to get to Arizona, to order flowers, to take care of this and that – and acknowledging awards just went on the way back shelf.

I’m grateful!  I appreciate your nominations and votes – but most of all for following me here through it all.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Of Dentists and Downtown Antiquing Digs -


What’s a girl to do when she walks into the antique mall after extensive dental work – the entire right side of her face numb from eyebrow to chin, and tongue feeling like it is too big to even close her teeth around it?

Not feeling like I wanted to drive home just yet – I decided to wander the antique mall where I wouldn’t have to talk to anyone and sound like my tongue had been stung by a bee.

I wasn’t there 5 minutes – I swear! 

And I saw this canvas of an applique quilt painting against the wall.  It’s huge – about 5 ft square, and I looked at the price.

40 BUCKS!?

And I knew.  Well, I hoped I knew – just where this would go.  The landing at Quiltville Inn!

Thursday, September 27, 2018

China Cabinet, Thread Cabinet, China Hutch, China Buffet -


This is NOT a China cabinet.

Evidently it’s a thread cabinet – oh, my stars! 

Melinda stood there patiently, right next to it – just waiting for me to round the corner from the next booth where I was poking around – in search of the right China Cabinet, Hutch, Buffet for the long wall in the dining room at Quiltville Inn.

This is NOT a China hutch, and I don’t think I could even fit a teacup into it – but again - Oh, My Stars!


Can I just sit here and breathe for a minute, please?

This is the ELVIS of all thread cabinets.

Roll up side panels and all!

A thing of beauty -

I am filled with abundant reverence and wonder!

And unabashed thread cabinet lust.


Door up – oh wow!


Inside storage, thread sizes numbered.


And we turn the tag over to find….

It’s $700.00.  *SIGH*

I love it dearly – but it would just be a “sitting it out and having it do nothing” thing.  A space taker-upper.

There are no drawers to hold Keurig pods or rulers or pencils or stencils – it would just be a big box of a thing to collect dust with no useful space within it – but oh, what a thing of beauty!

I’m thinking of the shop counter on where it once resided.  Can you see it in your imagination?  

Bolts of fabric-of-the-time on the shelves behind the cutting counter, other sewing notions of turn of the century or 1910s or 20s all around – the dress patterns, the buttons, the needles– 

Another sigh escapes me as I round another corner into another booth once again on my mission – I need a China cabinet for the dining room at Quiltville Inn.


Too small, not in great shape -

And I want things more "visible."


Too fancy and WAY too pricy!

There are others, but I’m not a fan of the “federal” style that has those curly ornamental things on the top.  

Who wants to dust those?  

And it makes it hard to use the top of the cabinet as a display area if everything has to go behind those curly bits.



This is mirrored in the back.

I like the open airiness of this – but the shelves are clear glass, and if you think I hate dusting federal curly things, you should see how I react to dusting glass with every bit of fluff that shows.  I like it though – but I don’t think this is it.


OOooooh!  Wrong style, but look at that tin punch!



It looks like it just dropped out of a scene from Alice in Wonderland.  Can’t you see the Queen of Hearts plopping herself down into this hounds tooth chair?  No, it didn’t come home but I loved it!

I’m afraid to say that the only thing that did come home is a big china platter – marked $8.00 and when I got to the counter, I found it was 20% off.  I left with only 6 bucks and some change out of pocket – not even enough to pull out a credit card for.


But there were beautiful quilts to touch -

Lovely 1900 Double T -


A slinky rayon spiderweb!


A delicate chicken scratch embroidery on the hem of an apron.

(I have one of these, do you?!)


We thought this was a cool way to hang wine glasses -

But you can only really fit 5 per rake or the bases of the glasses would overlap making them hard to remove.

And the weird or fun thing of the day to search for – and the thing that made us all laugh at once?  “I had one of those!!!”


The first generation Ipad!  LOL!

We all agreed – if our childhoods are now found in the antique mall, that must mean we are antiques too!  And that makes us limited editions, one of a kind, and priceless as well!

Or at least worth $12.00 as the tag on the Etch-a-Sketch says - 

I did some more antique mall wandering yesterday after a very painful visit to the dentist – I’ll share those finds with you tomorrow.

It’s raining, raining, raining outside today.  I think it rained most of the night, and that softly falling autumn rain played it’s magic on me and I slept all the way until 8:30am this morning.  This NEVER happens.  But maybe I needed it.

And this makes it a very good day to stay in and stitch.


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

This much is true! It would be really easy to lock myself away in a closet and use every reasoning in the book on why I have every right to do so right now. As it is I slept until 8:30, which never happens!

Sometimes we have to work even when we don't feel like it because the working makes us feel better.

Push through!

Have a wonderful Thursday, friends.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

To Wytheville and Back!

I was hijacked off to Wytheville, Virginia yesterday for a round of picnicking, antiquing and quilt shop fun.

The culprits in quilt-crime?  Melinda and Wendy from Davidson, North Carolina!

Little did I know when throwing myself into the shenanigans just how much I needed this day. 

The conversations in the car and around a picnic lunch, and folks we met along the way being even more important that the shopping by itself.

But the shopping was good, too!

This photo was my attempt on a cloudy Tuesday morning to get a photo of the Wytheville, VA banners on the lamp post.

Can you see it?

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

About Rediscovery


Any upheaval of significance can derail even the most stalwart of “routine followers.”

I never would have thought this to be true – but over the past month have found myself going to bed as one person, and upon waking up find myself staring at the ceiling wondering “Okay, how are you going to function today?” “Which Dr. Jekyl or Mr. Hyde emotion is going to take charge?”

Where one week ago I couldn’t even bear to look at needle and thread – afraid that I’d never be able to feed my creative self again, if I could even FIND her – I am going through rounds of digging in and digging out and finding projects that were somewhat begun, but had reached a standstill along the way. I’m asking questions like “Where did you come from?  Why did you languish?”

Such is the case with this pink bin full of  scrappy basket blocks (pattern from a previous Addicted to Scraps column with Quiltmaker) and the other items in the bin give me an idea of just what was going on here -

Monday, September 24, 2018

Hello, Monday!

There is something very satisfying about putting the last stitches into ANY project – whether big or small.

I finished the binding, hanging sleeve and label stitching on my Heritage Quilters, Illinois signature quilt last night with a smile.

I re-read each name, each wish and word.

I was transported back to March of this year, iffy weather that included snow flurries (and total snow dumpings!) and the promise of spring around the corner.

A week of beautiful clear skies and lake views – but that Chicago wind – oh, boy!

But mostly I remember the smiles and the excitement and the fun of being in the midst of all of this constructive creativity.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

A Bit of This, a Bit of That -

First things first – and last things last!

And all those things in between!

I finally finished the binding, label and hanging sleeve on my Diamond Tile Quilt. 

And I love it!

I had a ball choosing fabrics for this one, using up charm squares for centers, and digging into my Scrap User’s System for the other sizes of strips needed in a rainbow of colors, each block becoming a project in itself – complete with its own personality shining through.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

September Quilty Box Gift-Away!

There are good things happening right here today as we celebrate the Autumn Equinox and the first day of fall!

I grabbed my September Quilty Box on my way out the door for my round-about drive to the cabin in Virginia yesterday, planning to un-box it right here in the comfort of my cabin studio.


There are so many WONDERFUL goodies in this month’s box and I know I will have a use for them right away!

What is a Quilty Box?

Thursday, September 20, 2018

First Things First.

This girl says it all.

She velcroed herself to my side the moment we walked in the door last night.

It’s like she “KNOWS.”  You know?

She also snores, but I didn’t mind.

I was amazed at the amount of debris and limbs, leaves, and STUFF in my neighborhood as we took a walk to clear my head this morning.

Leaves and limbs and small branches clog the driveway, walkway, yard and even the back porch.  (It’s a covered porch, so that wind must have been blowing everything sideways.)

It will take a while to put things back together.  And we were lucky.

I live on a hill, so no flooding happened here, but I know folks not more than a couple of miles away who have been dealing with flooded basements and more.

The physical hurricane may have passed, but the emotional one still rages from time to time within my heart.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Roman Baths of Bath!

After our group tour at the American Museum in Bath, we had free time on our own to wander and discover and see what we wanted to see.

One of the great things to do is purchase tour tickets ONLINE (avoiding the line outside of the baths) for the Roman baths, which also give you additional tickets to the Fashion Museum, and the Victoria Gallery which was featuring an exhibit by Kaffe Fassett and Candace Bahouth.  BONUS!

Being a complete history nut – I was so intrigued by the story of discovery and restoration of this historical site.

There is a legend that Bath was founded in 860 BC when Prince Bladud, father of King Lear, caught leprosy. He was banned from the court and was forced to look after pigs. The pigs also had a skin disease but after they wallowed in hot mud they were cured. Prince Bladud followed their example and was also cured. Later he became king and founded the city of Bath.

King Lear! And we’d just the day previous  left Stratford upon Avon, recognizable lines from Shakespeare still dancing in our heads.

Viewing the green waters of the bath from the second level, the Abbey just beyond.

I think the biggest help while touring the baths and museum areas were the headsets available in a multitude of languages.  

Items were numbered and all you had to do was punch in the number for the item you were viewing and listen.  

Play it again if you want to listen to it more than once.

Move at your own pace – and we did!

The museum also has holograms of folks dressed in Roman period garb doing things in a very Roman way as you find your way through the winding paths of the tour.

It was very well done, and I would love to see it again and listen to the OTHER versions of the tour through my headset.

Audio guides are available in twelve languages, with one especially for kids, one for people of all ages and another by Bill Bryson commenting on the Roman site.

Some of Bill Bryson’s comments on the baths complimented the “official” story. Others were totally Bryson. 

The temple was dedicated to the Roman goddess Minerva and a sculpture of her head is on display. 

Bryson said he likes the male heads but the females scare him and Minerva isn’t someone he would like to meet. 

He wonders how a civilization that could develop aquaducts, fountains, architecture, and war machines could have religious beliefs that were so “stupid.”  (LOL!)

When visitors to the bath wanted special favors from Minerva they would write their requests on a sheet of lead, fold it up and throw it into the pool. 

Several have been recovered and translated. Bryson was amazed by the petty vindictiveness of the requests. One asked that the person who stole his gloves have his eyes poked out at the temple.

These comments kept me chuckling, while bringing a real "human" aspect to the mystery of the Romans of that time.

I also really enjoyed the kids versions - plain and simple, and recorded to keep their interest while learning.


Trying to imagine ancient Romans here -


And you can drink the “healing waters” here!

But be prepared – it tastes like old copper pennies mixed with rust!


It was a great tour!


Back in time for our hexie session!

This trip was very much go go go go with not a lot of time for a stitching class, but we met in the bar area for an hour or so of hexie instruction thanks to the kind folks at paperpieces.com! They had sent me 40 little hexie rosette kits, enough to get our fingers wet. 


Many new English Paper Piecing fans were born this evening!


And in the morning we would leave the fine streets of Bath for London!

Yesterday was a quiet day of spending time with my dad.  I’m glad we made it a day early.

From what our son Jeff tells us, the storm is getting heavier as he, Sadie and the cats wait it out at home.  We live in north-central North Carolina, about 4 1/2 hours drive inland from the coast.  Our main threat is wind and rain that knock down trees, and when trees go down they take out the power, and it can be several days before power is restored should that happen.

I’m grate4ful that he was willing to stay behind so we didn’t have to kennel the animals to come to Mark’s funeral.

Today is a day of family arrival.  Some are driving, some are flying – My first job today is to swing by the airport and pick up my sister Mary and her hubby Kelly when they arrive at 1pm.

Evening visitation is tonight, funeral tomorrow.

It feels so unreal.

I will be taking the weekend off from posting. 


Quiltville Quote of the Day.

Grateful for friends who lift me up when I can't stand on my own.