Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Wrapping Up the Weekend!

And this is how we spent Memorial Day!

It started off with an early morning "Over the Porch Rail" quilt sharing delighting passersby - we even got a beep or two!

A few folks were bugging out yesterday morning on their long journeys home up the eastern seaboard.

I was a bit worried about the backlighting from the sun being in morning position and still shining from the east - but if we were ALL in the shade, with the sun a bit blocked by the leaves of the tree, we actually did fairly well!

Monday, May 30, 2022

Memorial Day 2022

I've been enjoying my long Memorial Day weekend with this wonderful group of quilters!

I'm so happy this has worked out the way that it did.

I've got a full house of quilters, bakers and more - and the creativity and laughter is ever flowing.

Not only that, the weather has finally cooperated to give us a gorgeous weekend to enjoy the out of doors as well as inside.

This is how I'm saying "Hello!" to summer, with the Quilters of the Night!

Saturday, May 28, 2022

Quilting With Friends!

It's Maymont PDF Pattern & Fabric Roll Gift-Away Day!

I'm so happy with how this pattern has been received - I love seeing your blocks going up on design walls, seeing your fabric pulls, and hearing the stories of just where those scraps came from and the memories that are surfacing as you sew them up into such a fun (and so easy!) quilt!

And as promised,  I'll be choosing TWO winners who will each receive a Maymont PDF pattern AND a Skittles color roll from  Cotton to Quilts!

Friday, May 27, 2022

Busy Round Here!

Things were already busy at Quiltville Inn when I first walked through the door yesterday morning.

I am so excited to watch these projects grow up on the design walls over the coming Memorial Day weekend!

What started out as a family retreat now includes a wide variety of friends and we've got some new faces participating with the Quilters of the Night this year.

Why Quilters of the Night?  Because while SOME of us fall asleep  by 10:30pm - others like to sew until 2am - 

Wherever your creativity muse leads you to your personal best time to create - follow it!

Thursday, May 26, 2022

After The Washing!

I forgot to write about this!

In rapid fashion, I finished one hand quilting project, moved right into the next - amidst the busyness of a full retreat house and all else that is going on over here - 

And I forgot to post about this!

This quilt was my big experiment with the Crayola Ultra-Clean Washable Markers. (Original post about these HERE.) and I admit - if these weren't going to wash out, I wasn't sure just what I would do.

How did it go?

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Graduation Quilts!

I have two beautiful nieces who are graduating from high school this month.

Boy did those 12 years of school pass by quickly!

So quickly that as graduation announcements came I had to do a double take.  

How could this be?

I remember vividly the moments I spent making their baby quilts - and now they are 18 and graduating high school?

Aunt Bonnie went into hyper drive to choose quilts that would suit the personality of each young woman - and thanks to FedEx picking things up at my location, they were on their way to their new destinations.

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

When it Rains - We Quilt!

We waited and waited for the rain to subside - 

It began in earnest around 1pm., and never stopped.

It poured.  And it poured.  And it poured.

Summer rains are not like fall or winter rains - it's quite lovely to be out on the porch, so that is exactly where we gathered.

While there were no "over the rail" photo ops...we did what we could on the porch so everyone could get a photo of whatever they worked on, finished, or brought to share from last time.

Monday, May 23, 2022

Tantalzing Table Toppers with Pat Sloan: Gift-Away!

Good Monday Morning, Quiltvillians and visiting friends!

Today is a day I've been waiting for for months - ever since Pat Sloan asked if I would like to participate in the release of her new book Tantalizing Table Toppers

Oooooh!  New things!  And small projects - so fun to make.  I could hardly wait to dive in.

And you can dive in too!  There are 12 projects, and 12 blog hops along with 12 chances to win your own copy by following along!

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Sew a Lot, Eat More!

I have often said that when I contemplated having a retreat venue of my own, the thought of people feeding ME was never a part of my business plan!

Heaven knows it has wreaked havoc with my diet - it's a constant struggle - can you see why? LOL!

Yet, there is power in embracing my 60s and no longer having to strive for some perfect body size or shape - to embrace the kind of anonymity that entering that just-beyond-mid-life brings, and letting go somewhat of what society deemed important.

I am letting down so many barriers.  From what I choose to wear, to the fact that I don't feel the need to put make up on before leaving the house every single day. (We leave that for weddings, funerals and special occasions at this point!)

Friday, May 20, 2022

Porch Sittin' Time!

This was last night's end to a very busy quilty day -

The May Quiltvillians enjoying a delicious dinner on the back porch at Quiltville Inn.

Many of these gals are first timers - their first time staying at the inn, and the first time meeting each other!

Of course, we have repeat offenders attenders as well.  (LOL!)  It makes for a happy mix of new friendships, as well as old home week for those who already know each other.

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Hexagon Quilt Basting Day!

The time has come!

The finishing of the hand quilting on my 2008 string star is only a couple days away from reaching the finish line.

If you are like me - the next project is already in your head before you finish the one you are concentrating on - so it should come as no surprise that I made myself ready for the next hand quilting project destined to fill my evenings (and my hoop!) for the next many months ahead.

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

When Power Poles Go Pop!

It's the kind of Sunday morning phone call no one wants to receive.

"It looks like the top of your power pole has blown off and is just hanging there on the wires smoldering."


We hightailed it right on over to see what was what and to call the power company.

Out here as rural as we are, getting a responding vehicle can take an hour or more - they are coming from Hillsville, VA which by the odometer is only 41 miles away, but by winding mountain roads, It's an hour plus.

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Weekend Recap!

Along with all of the quilting and porch sitting that can be done while on retreat - a van load of us got out to stretch our legs in search of wildflowers.

Every time I come out with a group things have changed.  Further toward summer we march on, ready to discover just what has bloomed since the last time.

These photos were taken by Lisa - I had left my phone on the bathroom counter, so no camera on hand.

She has such a great eye - and I thank her for offering to be trip photographer and sharing these with us all!

Monday, May 16, 2022

Maymont PDF Pattern Gift-Away!

Happy Monday, Quiltvillians!

I hope everyone had a splendiferous weekend doing what you love!

Incredible amounts of rain happened here after the Muddy Creek Misfits had clicked their collective heels three times and pointed their vehicles toward home.  

We had 2.45 inches of rainfall in a very short span of time yesterday - it was incredible.  And I'm so very glad that no one was driving through it, or had to load their cars through it all.

And there was more excitement involving a smoldering power pole - which I will fill you in on tomorrow. 

It was a weird, weird wet day!

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Hearts of Hope Love!

This week has reaffirmed to me just WHY we make quilts.  And keep making quilts.

"I think I'll make JUST ONE quilt." Said NO QUILTER EVER!

As quilters we all know the call.  

Someone is graduating.  Must make a quilt!

Someone is getting married.  Must make a quilt!

Someone is having a baby.  Must make a quilt!

Someone is moving away.  Must make a quilt!

Someone is retiring.  Must make a quilt!

Friday, May 13, 2022

No Misfits Here!

With rain on the horizon, the Muddy Creek Misfits took porch time as much as possible yesterday - enjoying what we could of our beautiful May afternoon.

Lunches, snack time, wine o'clock and more - the porch is a perfect place for sitting and letting the world go by.

And yes - there is often stitching of bindings, applique or other handwork done out here in the comfort of the covered wrap around porch - it's one of my favorite things about this house.  That porch is wide and goes on for miles.

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Do What You Can, With What You Have, Where You Are.

When ever I feel there is too much on my plate, I remember the fabulous example of my friend Jill - who as a CPA working through the hellfire of tax season will STILL find a way to do things that center her soul and set her day off on a positive note -

By sewing simple and super cute children's quilts from charm squares of novelties and brights.  She's turned out hundreds - all in 20 to 30 minutes of early morning time before heading off for her busy workday.

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Quilt With a Friend Day!

Is there any other kind of day that is much better than Quilt With a Friend Day?

Martha is on a mission to have this patriotic version of Hearts of Hope ready for gifting this weekend to a special recipient currently in the military.

Of course I welcome the chatting and quilt play time!

I also love some of the simple variations she made along the way of creating her own Hearts of Hope quilt.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Hidden Gems & Small Moments

Yesterday was another episode of "Bonnie & the Endodontist" - something NO ONE (including me) wants to revisit.  

But waiting room time is waiting room time and I took that time to flip through the photos on my phone to organize, file, delete...you get the picture.

And now you get the pictures!

I took these photos of this old lovely abandoned place on the Cinco de Mayo Grand Prix run that Martha and I enjoyed last Thursday.

Monday, May 09, 2022

Mother's Day Weekend (And Quiltmaker Drawing Time!)

Happy Monday, everyone!

I hope your weekend was a good one, whatever you got up to.

As for us, we took a little road trip down to Jonesville, NC for Mother's Day spent with my son Jeff.

It was a simply hanging out, steaks on the grill kind of perfect day.

Son Jason was there by video call later in the day - and I couldn't be happier.  Of course I wish he could have been here for hugs in person, but it is what it is.

Saturday, May 07, 2022

Just WHAT Have I Done?

I'm starting this post off with something quilty - 

Because it has been the weirdest week of not much machine time at all, and just like the screaming 3-year old who needs a nap, I needed to be grounded for some time out in my sewing room just feeding pieces through.

Do you get that way too?

So I'm starting this post off focusing on that, and we'll get to the other stuff later.  I promise.

Friday, May 06, 2022

Cinco de Mayo - OUT!

How is this for happy colors?

When the opportunity comes to spend Cinco de Mayo out with a friend, including antique malls and Mexican fare for lunch - I'm all in!

This plan formed a bit over a week ago when Martha and I were plotting where to head next on a girl's day out.

And we had a ball!

We headed first toward Rural Retreat and made a quick stop at The Dutch Pantry, an Amish store/deli for some much needed bulk items and a snack and gabbed all the way to our first destination in Wytheville.

Thursday, May 05, 2022

When Lilacs Bloom -

This lilac hedge is about to burst forth - and I can't wait!

It sits right at the top of the drive to the cabin, along the parking area.

No, there is no fragrance yet - but every morning when I head off to the QPO studio for work I give them a test sniff, just in case!

Wednesday, May 04, 2022

The Baby Blue Dreamy Machine -

Remember when machines came in car paint colors and all metal parts?

You guys, I am having such a hard time resisting this one.  I have rehomed MOST of my vintage machines with the sale of the Wallburg house - our cabin is much smaller (the smallest house we've ever lived in) and I just don't have room.

I'm happy that machines are going to live happy lives in other sewing spaces - but there is something about this robin's egg blue beauty that keeps me coming back and looking.

Tuesday, May 03, 2022

In the Slammer! (And a Roanoke Road Trip!)

The installation of the 30ft x 30ft play yard for the dogs began on Saturday.

On an uneven plot of ground, it wasn't the easiest thing - but with some trenching in the high spots and some attached and buried hog wire in the low spots to prevent digging and escaping - this is the best we can come up with to keep these girls from going out on the lam.

As this has been the "year of mud" thanks to much soil moving and land leveling in the front of the cabin, things are looking rather rough.  There really is not much grass left thanks to the tractor, but like a bad hair cut, it will all grow back in due time.

There is more hog wire to buy, and more trenching to be done - but in the mean time they show no signs of digging to get out, and rather like the space!

We've come up with a short solution to the need for shade - an old 10' x 10' pop up tent awning thing with a tarp over it is in one corner for now.

It looks so "Appalachian American" and I'm proud to say it does the job at that!

We've found if we turn them loose for their twilight run up the mountain about 20 minutes before dark - it only takes them that long (last night it only took them 10) to go like rockets to the top of the property and follow their noses back down.

At least it wasn't a 10 hour hair-raising adventure like what was experienced a week ago today.

This was the look they gave me yesterday morning as I headed north east toward Roanoke to spend the afternoon with a friend I hadn't seen in years!

In the back of the van - precious cargo!

Sally has rented the sweetest little get-away apartment around the corner from her daughter and 6 month old grandson.  Roanoke is 2 hours or so away from where she lives outside of Richmond near the other daughter and grandbabies.

And like the doting helpful grannie that she is, she wants equal time with both sets of grandkids, but still needs her sanity and own space.

She also needed a small fold-away sewing machine for her little nest (as all quilters NEED!) and this is where I came in!

With the sale of the Wallburg house last November, I knew I didn't have room for EVERYTHING - so Sally and I made a plan in which I would bring this to her when the weather was nice, her own space was in order, and we could have a nice visit.

This machine is a sweet 15-91, her info is found in the grey stripe - there were 50,000 of them commissioned October 15, 1954.  FIFTY THOUSAND in that run.

I know as a basic hard-working straight-stitcher that this Singer 15 will do a great job for Sally.

The only problem we had?  I forgot to bring thread and fabric to show her how to thread and use it.

And Sally didn't have any either!

That HAS to be a first - that two quilters in cahoots didn't have fabric or thread between them.

We did have the manual though, so she has all of the info on how to clean, oil, maintain and use this sweet machine.

I've got an identical one to it - a twin if you will, that belonged to first my Great-Grandmother on my mom's side.  It then went to my Grandmother who sewed my mom's competition skating costumes on it, many dresses, skirts, blouses and other clothing items.

It's the machine my mom and her sisters learned on, and now it is owned by me.  I'm keeping that one!

So back to Roanoke!

How about this for out to lunch?

Amanda suggested Our Daily Bread and off we went. I knew my diet was sunk the moment we walked in - this is where you stand in line to make your order.  

We enjoyed a wonderful chat, delicious food, and back to Sally's we went.

Just outside of Sally's front yard picket fence.

Wise words to remember.

Roanoke's Old South West side, not far from downtown, is full of beautiful old houses that rose up in tree lined neighborhoods due to the railroad boom that began in the 1880s.

 In 1882, Roanoke became a crossroads for the railroad, which eventually became the Norfolk and Western Railway. This marked the start of the town's rapid growth, leading to its charter as the City of Roanoke in 1884. (The same year Quiltville Inn was built!)

Its historic market, which also began in these early years, remains vibrant as one of the oldest in the country and still operates as an anchor of downtown commerce.

If I needed to once again live in a neighborhood, this is exactly the kind of neighborhood I would choose!

I took this photo while sitting in Sally's front garden in Old South West Roanoke looking across the street at similar front porches, chatting up a storm while her two dogs, Jack and Bill played amongst the flowers.

This color! Beautiful!

It's porch sittin' season and I am so happy I got to do this! 

Thanks, Sal Pal - let's do it again soon! 

It's Quiltmaker Gift-Away Time!

And not just Quiltmaker, but our three winners will also receive products from IronEZ!

One winner will win the IronEZ with standard bottle, a second will win the IronEZ with fine mist bottle, and our third winner will receive a 2 pack of fine mist bottles!

No more knocking that spray bottle off of their ironing board ever again.

I am just this sold on the product, and the kind folks at IronEZ are offering a 15% discount to my readers using code BH15OFF.

Quiltmaker Magazine AND an IronEZ product? Who's ready to win?

Head on over to yesterday's Gift-Away post and get your entry in.  We'll be drawing for our 3 winners (USA Addresses only please) on Monday 5/9/2022.

Today.  Yesterday my maintenance light came on in the van while driving.  It's time for an oil/lube/filter and whatever else change. And a tire rotation. 

Doesn't that sound exciting?

And the guys will be out to install a Generac at the inn.  It's the next big upgrade that needs to happen. I'm hoping we will rarely need to use it, but it will be there incase we do.

In fact- I need to be there in 25 minutes when they arrive so I'm outta here!

Quiltville Quote of the Day -

Life is rich with abundance, give with your heart and you will never run out of what comes back!

Vintage Log Cabin quilt found in Michigan.

Have a Terrific Tuesday, folks!


Monday, May 02, 2022

May/June '22 Quiltmaker Gift-Away!

It's Quiltmaker Gift-Away Time!

Who is ready for the May/June 2022 issue?

I'm so happy it's MAY - it certainly has taken its own sweet time in coming.  I love seeing photos and videos of long-awaited graduations, of proms, weddings, and more.

This is the stuff that happy memories are made of, and oftentimes they include quilt giving, which makes it even better!