Friday, August 21, 2020

New Digs for Ivy–and FMQ Academy!

This little adventure happened last evening.

After watching Lola just terrorize poor Ivy at the QPO – several times throughout the day – I made the decision to bring Ivy home to the cabin.

Juggling cats is not my favorite pastime. Finding ways that everyone will live happily ever after is not my strong suit.

Emmy Lou and Lola together were a complete fail after Dresden crossed the rainbow bridge.  Dresden was the only other cat the Lola had ever been near – and HE was the Alpha.

At nearly 12 years old she has come into her own and taken on Alpha status and this little Ivy interloper gave her cause and opportunity to flex her new status in very mean ways.

It got so bad yesterday that Ivy wouldn’t come out from behind a stack of boxes.  Wouldn’t eat.  Wouldn’t use the littler box – held it all until she could no longer hold it and peed on the rug – the closest place she could find.

It had to stop.

I ran to Independence, VA in search of an extra littler box and extra supplies to keep her in my basement studio at the cabin.  Not a litter box to be found between the Dollar General and the small Food City grocery – the only places in town that would have such a thing (Independence is population 900 or so and we are glad they have what they do.)

Her food and water on top of the treadle machine for now.

It will keep Zoey out of it.

There is much purring going on -

Ivy ADORES Zoey.

And she is back to happily making biscuits as if to say “Thank you thank you thank you for saving me from mean old Lola!”

Click to Play:

Sometimes “Happily Ever After!” simply means “Happily Apart.”  I guess I can respect that.

Now to keep Emmy Lou from finding out – not that she comes down here ever.  She pretty much at 20 years old sticks to her corner of the couch, or the front porch.

Too much excitement, I tell you!

But here is something I am REALLY excited about!

Free Motion Quilting Academy Early Bird Registration is NOW OPEN!

You are a Quilting Rockstar. YOU can finish your own quilts-- bee-yoo-tee-fully-- right at home on your domestic sewing machine.
  • Finishing your own quilts saves you money
  • Sending quilts out may allow you to skip the “complicated” steps of basting and quilting, but if you’re a quick piecer, those longarming bills add up fast
  • Finishing your own quilts saves you time
  • No more waiting for your quilts to arrive home again. When you’re ready to wrap up a project to clear space in the sewing room, give an amazing gift, or get something fresh on your bed, you have the awesome sauce skills to get ‘er done
  • Finishing your own quilts gives you creative control
  • Ever had a vision for a quilt but felt like you had to settle for something else because of time, skill, money, or communication challenges? When you are the piecer and the quilter, you have amazing creative freedom to execute your dreams exactly as you dreamed them
  • Finishing your own quilts is fun
I love cutting up fabric and sewing it back together to see all that mix and match piecing magic, but doing the quilting too means even more time with those gorgeous fabrics PLUS getting to see the whole thing come to life as the FMQ adds texture and movement.

Excited to learn how to finish your own quilts? Fabulous! Because I’m excited to invite you to the Free Motion Quilting Academy with HollyAnne Knight of String & Story!

Why take this online course?

FMQ Academy isn’t so much a class as an adventurous journey of realizing that you are more creative and capable than you’ve allowed yourself to believe.

Yes, you’ll learn the nitty gritty of setting up your machine and adjusting your tension, how to baste a quilt, and how to stitch over two dozen free motion quilting motifs. But even more than that, you’ll have a specific, guided, step by step outline for not only learning motifs but also going from a quilt top to a complete and beautiful quilt, including learning how to decide what to quilt where.

In the end: your free motion quilting will be beautiful, but you’ll also enjoy the process of completing your quilts.

In fact – we’ve got something extra special to help those fence sitters get off the fence. Join HollyAnne for the free MASTER CLASS!

Before you invest your money and time, join HollyAnne for the Free Master Class, “Your Free Motion Quilting Secret Sauce!” live on Facebook. She will guide you through all you need to know about the Free Motion Quilting Academy so you can get a taste of the larger class and of your future Quilting Rockstar success!

And here is the special deal -

FMQA Early Bird Tuition is $175 USD from Friday, August 21-Sunday August 23.  That’s RIGHT NOW!

FMQA Full Tuition is $197 USD from Monday, August 24-Saturday, August 29.

New Student orientation happens August 31st.  The course extends for 12 weeks, running from August 31st to December 5th. And you have access to the instructional videos for LIFE! You have access forever, to watch and re-watch as often as you want or need.

Take advantage of the many LIVE sessions for Q&A inside the course Facebook group during the 12 weeks of the course - receiving help in overcoming any hurdles you may encounter along the way.

Let’s face it: You need a free motion quilting class that lasts longer than a few hours, shows you how to use your machine not just a fancy dealer machine, allows you to practice at your own pace and on your own time, and gives you an ongoing way to ask questions and get help when you get stuck.

Free Motion Quilting Academy isn’t “JUST” a class - it is a journey and an adventure to realizing that you are more creative and capable than you’ve allowed yourself to believe.

Yes, you’ll learn the nitty gritty of setting up your machine and adjusting your tension, how to baste a quilt, and how to stitch over two dozen free motion quilting motifs. But even more than that, you’ll have a specific, guided, step by step outline for not only learning motifs but also going from a quilt top to a complete and beautiful quilt, including learning how to decide what to quilt where.

In the end: Your free motion quilting will be beautiful, but you’ll also enjoy the process of completing your quilts.

Ready to dive in?  Register for the FREE Master Class and then Enroll in Free Motion Quilting Academy.

As I finish up this post, Zoey is asleep on her bed behind me, with Ivy in her door-less crate right next to her, also purring and snoring away.

Things may seem chaotic and out of control, but eventually things settle in to just the way they were meant to be.

Quiltville Quote of the Day -

Vintage nine-patch quilt shared by Kevin the Quilter.

Happy Friday, folks!

Here's to a great day of doing something we love and focusing on the 'Can Do' instead of the 'Can't '.

Have a good one!


  1. I couldn't get same sex cats to accept the other (and yes they were fixed) but after a couple of weeks of hissing and growling opposite sex cats decided they were friends. I don't know if that's valid or not but that's what happened with me.

    1. Kathy, I had the samme problem when I rehomed a third cat, another female. The female I have/ had is the youngest and a true Alphakitty. My poor male (a Snowshoe) felt like he should be loyal to the little one that he had raised, but also wanted to be friends w/ the new one, as she could teach him about the outside world. But he chastised her when she stayed out too late or overnight too. He will not sleep or go in the tw basket cat tree that he and the other cat used to share, not since she disappeared almost a year ago. Cats are funny that way.
      Kasilof, AK

  2. you have excellent cat juggling skills!!! Of course Lola was unwilling to give up her queen of the QPO status... LOL, and you found the perfect solution, I'm pretty sure EmmyLou won't care, so long as Ivy stays in the basement! LOL -- when you start having retreats on a regular basis, she could become the Inn Cat... but for now fingers crossed everyone stays in their own territory and Zoey doesn't 'share' the information... do what makes your heart sing... Cats in Carlsbad CA

  3. Good that Zoey gets along with all the cats, but does seem to be hard to get older cats to accept another cat or any change, actually. Our 35 year old son has been in the process of moving into his first house, which means leaving our 16 year old cat. He found an ad for kittens and picked two of them up Tuesday night, which meant that needed to be his first night staying overnight at his new place. It took the kittens 2 days to get used to their new home and accept their new daddy as fun instead of scary. The older cat back at our house, being less adaptable due to age, is still lost. She was used to sleeping with son every night. She will sit on my lap for a while in the daytime, as before, but sleeping with the hubby and I is not on her radar yet, but she is quite willing to wake me up to tell me how she feels about her loss in her best Siamese voice. I trust she will recover and decide who her new special person will be. A previous cat that favored our daughter took a while to change her loyalty to me from daughter when daughter left for college, but it did happen.

  4. It is so great how you try new things until you get a good solution. When all the fur babies are happy you can be happy. LOL Thank you for sharing your trials with fur babies, as well as your joy of quilting.

  5. You are so loving
    It’s hard to figure out what to do to made things right for our animals
    You are doing a great job
    Thank you for caring so so much about your fur babies

  6. I have fostered cats and had several cats over my lifetime. My dream is one day before I pass on to have my pets all get along, lol. Multiple cats are definitely hard to manage. I am down to one grumpy cat and REALLY want more but I know how difficult it will be.

  7. My neighbor has a cat that joined their family recently and looks just like Ivy. I think of your writings about Ivy whenever I see their kitty outside on their porch. She showed up in the same way Ivy did: out of the blue. We are in Iowa so I am sure there is no relation to Ivy, but a very nice coincidence.

  8. My alley cat part Siamese never forgave me for any additions, including children. You have your hands full! Hope you are feeling better.

  9. Sad Thad Lola decided she didn’t want to be friends but I’m sure Ivy will be very happy in your cabin studio. She has you for cuddles and her best pal ZoeyJo, to love on too. Things don’t always happen the way we expect but this seems like a very good compromise.
    Wishing you and your cute and adorable fur babies all my very best wishes.
    Stay safe
    Love and quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  10. When we were integrating a kitten to our household (we already had one cat) we kept a barrier between them only letting the kitten into the household when we were there to supervise. We've had a few cats living together in harmony but this time it was not so easy. Our other cats respected one another's boundaries which, in hindsight, was a godsend. Our current resident cat was not at all happy and the kitten just didn't respect boundaries. Cats are really solitary creatures except with the folks that feed them. We used the Feliway plug-ins and I guess that helped. It took months before they were able to live together in mostly peace. Our resident cat is the best cat ever and the kitten, at times, just has to give him a run for the money. It is exasperating. The kitten is now three years old (it's been a long three years) and has recently been diagnosed with asthma which is a challenge in itself. You just never know how it is going to go with cats. I think you have made the right decision. You might want some sort of barrier to keep Ivy in the sewing quarters and spare Emmy Lou the stress. My heart goes out to you with this situation. It is not always as smooth and easy a transition as we would like. Seems you are on the right track.

  11. Litter boxes! I’ve bought rubber SIL clear plastic bins, high enough when they sometimes pee, it stays in the box. Poor Lola, she is an old lady by the way, too set in her ways to accept a young upstart. I’ve lost 7 cats in 7 years, left with 4 (all boys), rescued 2 more. The latest, a female hisses at everyone! No fighting, but noisy to say the least. We manage, and she will eventually.

    Dogs, cats, just like humans, don’t like everyone. So happy to see Zoey and Lola are buds, and Ivy will enjoy her senior years in peace. It is what it is, with your love!

  12. What a shame about Lola. They seemed to be fine at the beginning, of sorts. But happy news for Ivy.
    You have to do what's best for them all in the end. Good call.

  13. I am sure this will work out just fine. Cats ate strange. They never learn to love other cats much unless you get litter mates. Dogs on the other hand seem to accept other dogs well for the most part as long as equal attention abounds.

  14. I think much depends on the cat's personality and how many different animals crossed their path as they grew up. But on the whole, the males we've had have been much more accepting of new cats. It makes sense though - if left to their own devices, the females would have to worry more about defending territory to have enough prey to feed the kittens.

    Anyway - litter boxes... if you can't find a "real" one, go to hardware store and ask for a concrete mixing tray. No cover, but much less expensive and about the same size as the largest litter box.

  15. Cat juggling, oh my! You’re a good fur kid momma!

  16. Signed up for FMQA yesterday and I'm so excited. Thank you Bonnie for introducing me to HollyAnne. You're the best!

  17. Bonnie, what a perfect quote - I needed that. We suffered a derecho - land hurricane - here in eastern Iowa - many states were hit - on August 10. I am 76 and this is the first time that a storm like this has affected me. Twelve days without power! Even though we luckily found and purchased a generator (Which kept the freezer cold) several days later, thank God - we were still toughing it. Got power last night about 7:30 - what a joy to flip a switch and have a light! We are so fortunate to have a house and a roof over our heads - what's 12 days of no power? Please keep the many people who don't have a home or a roof, who have a tree in their living room, those who have lost most everything, in your prayers. That quote was just what I needed as I surveyed all I needed to do today and not nearly enough hours to accomplish it all. Thank you.

  18. I was so glad to hear that Emmy Lou is well; you used to post about her but we haven't heard much since you adopted Zoey. It sounds as though Lola spent the first 12 years of her life being dominated by Dresden and was enjoying her status as the queen bee. She may eventually come around, but in the meantime it's wonderful that all three kitties have their own space. Kudos to you for taking the time to make sure all three feel secure and loved!

  19. ’Happily Apart’ cats are what we just went through...our established cat of the house had absolutely nothing good to say about the sweet kitten we tried to adopt. Alas, the old girl won and we are back to being a one cat family.


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