Thursday, February 28, 2013

February NewFO

I didn't get started specifically on a NewFo in February.  However, I did work at cutting logs from my scraps for any future log cabin quilt(s) I may decide to make.  I also worked on cutting the pieces from scraps for spool blocks ala Bonnie Hunter's leaders and enders.  So, in a sense, these are NewFOs.

So here's my February NewFO contribution.
My tub of 1 1/2" strips.

Cutting station with log cabin logs and spool block sets.

Zippered bags with 40 sets each of spool block components; one bag has less as I quit before cutting enough.

I barely made a dent in that tub of 1 1/2" strips, and would have kept at it for a bit longer, but other issues made me realize I needed to put it away for awhile.

Linking to Barbara's Cat Patches for the NewFO

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Blog Changes

Well, I don't know if I like it better or not, and it will take a little time to adjust.  I may eventually change my header picture too.  Have I mentioned how I'm not as computer savvy as I'd like to be?  I did finally figure out how to make my blog 3-columns wide, but had to change templates.  I may still monkey around with it in the future, but for now this is how it will look.  To me, it seems too stark and I'm not sure how to change that - hey, it took me a great deal of time just to get it to this point!  And I don't think I could figure out how to change it back.

[And, ok Blogger, why do you keep giving me error messages when you auto-save my post while I'm typing it?  Is it something I'm doing, or not doing, or are you having technical difficulties?]

I'm hoping this will give a more organized appearance, at least to the blog - we won't talk about my house.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

My Padawan's Quilt

I think I've mentioned before that I have a quilting student.  She refers to herself as my Padawan and to me as her quilting Master - though I'm far from a master-quilter, but at this time, I do have more knowledge and experience than she does so therefore, I can teach her what I know.  She is an excellent student.  She's also becoming a good friend.  And she's young enough to be my daughter which makes it fun too.  When we first started meeting at the end of last year, she still had her sewing machine in the box it was purchased in - unopened.  She is a true beginner, even at sewing for the most part, though she said when she was young she had made an apron, and she had done a very tiny 'quilt' with a group of ladies possibly by hand.

Her quilt is not yet finished, but she has done an excellent job to this point.  And, as a newbie, she opted to tie it instead of machine or hand-quilting.  I have not yet mastered the former, at least not in free-motion, and have never tried the latter.  She is ready to prepare and add the binding, but we will have to skip tomorrow's lesson as her kids are sick and my own son is sick too.  

Here is her quilt: 

The Cat's in the Bag

These are from a week or so ago.  It seems wherever I am, there also are my fur-babies, and they can be SO amusing, praise God for fur-babies :)

This cute little cotton bag was a Christmas gift to me from my daughter, and I had no idea what to do with it.  I needed to wash it so did, and had left it laying on the chair when Flame came up and nuzzled her way into it, and later shifted around - it's a perfect snuggle bag for her.  And it matches her color, but those are not kitties on the bag, rather gingerbread boys which is a tradition between my daughter and I at Christmas.  When she was little we would make gingerbread boy cookies and now that she lives too far away to do that, I usually send her one or several things I've picked up during the year that gingerbread boy related...this year she sent to me!

See that red & white object in the background?  That was SUPPOSED to have been sent to my daughter for Christmas - gingerbread boy silicone candy mold.

Mom, can you pull the drawstring tighter? No?


P.S. Oops, no design wall post this week...maybe next week will be better.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Reporting Late for Stash Report

I didn't have any changes one way or the other this past week, however, I did the week before but didn't get my changes so posted, so, these are my updated numbers.  There is only an I had a wonderful Friday with a friend on the 15th and she and I went to JoAnn's and a local craft store that carries quilt fabric, and then had lunch at a tea garden restaurant and then just chatted awhile.  While at JoAnn's, she found a white-on-white of multi-sized dots or looked like snowballs depending on your intended application.   We prefer the latter since we're taking the same class and doing a Christmas quilt.  At the cutting station, I decided I'd get two yards as well, since w-o-w's are always good to have in your stash :)

Used This Week: 0 yards
Used Year to Date: 0 yards
Added This Week: 2 yards
Added Year to Date: 5 yards
Net Used for 2013: -5 yards

I'm sure just about everyone else has already posted at Judy's Patchwork Times, but you can still check if you want to.

Time to go see what's on my design wall for that report ;p

Friday, February 22, 2013

Fina-Lee Friday

I have obviously been absent.  Today I am still finding it difficult to be joyous about anything.  It may take me some time, and a LOT of prayer and supplication.  I'm calmer than I was a few days ago, but that's not saying much.  Today is a  'rant' day and (with few explanations) is brought to you by:
  • Husband - no further comment!
  • Traffic - they'll license anyone!
  • Doctors - I HATE STRONGLY DETEST waiting
  • Cats - can't you see I'm busy?
  • Kid - why is everything last minute?
  • Furnace - why are you not working right?
  • Kitchen remodel - now on indefinite 'hold'
  • Living in a fallen world - Lord, I want to be HOME in YOUR arms
  • Back, neck & head aches - where are my pain pills?
  • Weather, though not so much, but you can keep the wind!
Hope your day is looking brighter than my list ;\

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Oh, This is NOT Good

I was messing around in the layout feature and really goofed up my blog :( and now I can't find out how to fix it.  I don't even get "layout" as an option to select ~:\

So NOT happy!

***ok, found my 'old' template, but that was scary.  OK, now the question, I would really like to make this 3-columns wide...anyone know how I do that?  I'm only functionally literate on USING and not CREATING on the computer.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Yay for Friday

And yeah, I should make it 'Fina-Lee' Friday but I really want to enjoy the day.  I suppose my only rant for the day would be to question why Marty decided to work from home...decision made just this morning.

I have my good quilting friend 'Panda' coming over - I just realized I don't know her middle name which is what I use for everyone here in Blog-land, so for today at least, I'll just use the name of her favorite animal :)
When she gets here, which should be very soon, we're going to work on cutting some 3" half-square triangles on her AccuQuilt machine.  These will be for a class she talked me into taking with her at a quilt show next month.  I'm sure it will be fun (the class) and I'll be learning some new techniques I think, as a couple of the requirements are nylon thread and Steam-A-Seam - and I've not really used either.  I think early on I used a little nylon thread, but I don't even remember on what.

Anyway, Panda and I are going to do that, and then we're going to have lunch at a tea restaurant that I didn't even know we had until she had visited me sometime last year, and then I think she wanted to go to a craft store that carries fabric out here.  

I'm looking forward to our get together, but why on earth did Marty have to work from home?  Sometimes you just want to have 'girl time' without the guys hanging around and he KNEW my friend was coming over today.  Well, I'll just have to get over it and I WILL enjoy my day.

Have a joyous day!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

14th of February

I have this on my February to-do list, hah, it was on my January to-do list too, yet I still had high hopes of getting it quilted before the 14th of February....guess there's always next year....but I still have 14 days of February :)    Happy Valentine's Day

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Common Sense

I'll come right and say it.  We are a nation that has litigated and entertained itself right out of Common Sense.  A couple of days ago I purchased a nice big, yet relatively inexpensive toaster oven.  I now have an "oven", and though not a full size, it will be , and is, an asset to my kitchen :)  This morning I was looking at some of the reviews on this oven, most highly favorable, and this one caught my eye.  I just absolutely love it, and couldn't have said it any better.

"Some reviewers have criticized the fact that the metal parts of the oven get hot enough to burn if touched. To them, I say... It's an oven! A small oven with little to no insulation! It's supposed to get hot, and you're not supposed to touch it when it is! if it didn't get hot, it would FAIL AT ITS INTENDED PURPOSE!"

Why would anyone even consider that an oven would NOT be hot to the touch when it's in use?  Yet that's the stuff of lawsuits, remember that case of the fast food chain that was sued because a woman put a cup of HOT coffee between her knees to hold it and got burned when it spilled?  Common sense would say - DON'T put a paper cup of HOT coffee between your knees for any reason or any amount of time! Just DON'T! All those warnings that seem ridiculous are because some lame brain DIDN'T use Common Sense and decided to sue; ok, maybe a few were legit and needed to sue, but the majority are from plain foolishness and lack of sensibility on the part of the individual.

Hand in hand goes the woman this morning in the parking,  that for a brief instant the thought crossed my mind I WILL hit her.  I was driving through the parking lot and she, without looking AT ALL just hiked herself right across in front of me.  Now what would have happened if I had been distracted and hadn't noticed she was there or had been even closer than I was - just a couple of feet?  As it was, I came to a stop quite close to her and only then did she look up - I hope it scared her enough to use her eyes and ears the next time she blindly walks into traffic.  I am always amazed when I see people do this in parking lots.  Cars ARE bigger than people, and drivers DO get distracted if they're looking for a parking space. In my book, Common Sense says 'stop - look - listen'....AND that's what I was TAUGHT to do as a pedestrian.

Rant over, it's a busy day with a school conference and a quilting lesson for my "Padawan", but I'll have the evening free and need to find some fabric scraps for a class I'm taking a quilt show in March.  I have a friend bringing her AccuQuilt cutter over on Friday for some of the pieces and I need to be ready.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Thread Work

This is taking thread to a whole new art form.  I think you'll be as amazed as I was.  Wow, wow, wow!

Devorah Sperber  thread art.  

Better if I'd linked to her home page, doh!

Saturday, February 9, 2013


I took the time today to add a gallery of my finished quilts to the blog.  For the length of time I've been a quilter (perhaps more accurately, a fabric collector and piecer, lol) one would think I'd have a whole lot more to show for my efforts.  But it is what it is, yet I'm hoping to be adding some finished projects to that gallery, sooner than later.  Look for the tab among my other blog tabs above my posts.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Miscellaney aka Fina-Lee Friday

Not all of these are images from this week, but it's Friday, I'm tired, both my arm and back hurt (from back issues), and I didn't want to miss another posting.  I really would like to be consistent with at least a daily post.  So today, I will share a handful of pictures taken since the 1st of January.

Close-up of frost damaged jade plant.  All the dead 'leaves' will drop off and the stems are still viable, so though it may look ugly for awhile, new growth will fill in on the stems - self-pruning?

One, of two, large frost-damaged jade plants.

This is what happens to your iron when kitties knock it over and the water starts seeping out and you don't notice for who-knows-how-long.  And, while the sole-plate is now cleaned, I'm still getting a whole lot of dried mineral deposits coming out every time I use.  I need to do a clean cycle.

These are the culprits, they like to hang out with me wherever I am, and they even like having their own chairs!  Love these guys gals.

This is a section of my laptops keyboard.  Funny how the flash makes it look brown and old-timey, and well, dirty - it really isn't!  Notice the wear patterns on the N and the L .
And check out the wear on the E, S, D, &C!  I've never noticed wear patterns like this on any other equipment I've ever used over the years.  I'm thinking the material must really be soft.  My laptop is probably about 5 years old an I do use it a lot.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Of Quilts and Other Things

I missed getting a post in for Design Wall Monday - there's nothing ON my design wall except a photo and the Dresden Plate block that's been there for months - both pinned to one far edge, along with a dozen or so pins.

Finished piecing is Bella Luce.  It now goes into the UFO black hole.  But I'll share some pics of it first:  

The finished top.  Should I ever do another of this quilt, I will make it square and add another row on the left that matches the row on the right.  I like symmetry, and this tweaks my brain.  I suppose if you cock your head to the right and look at it that way it could be symmetrical.  I like the inner border fabric even though I still wasn't sure while at the store.  I think I may use it as the binding too.

Hey, wait, who's this having a ball on the quilt top? Flame says "it's MY quilt, mom, see, it even matches my color, and I love it!".  She truly behaved as if it was made just for her.

"Oh, no wait a minute, there's black in this quilt too!" says Raven.  "Maybe mom made it for ME."  Funny kitties :)


We entertained endured the final contractor bid appointments (Contractors #3 and #4) this past week.  We also had a cabinet man through Contractor #3, stop by for precise measurements, and are now awaiting their bids.  It's truly amazing how in talking with them they can give such contradictory comments as to the city code requirements etc.  I made a 3-D graph paper model so they all KNOW what I'm wanting as to general layout, but each has their own opinions too.  I do not care for any of this and am in awe of those who've survived the process (I know, we did the bathrooms in 2012, but we were absolutely crunched for time, and knew nothing, and got great bathrooms, but at a price that may have been too high but the quality and workmanship are great - just not sure it was all 'right' for this old house!).  I marvel too at those who may have built a home from the ground up and have dealt with the whole process too.  Personally, I'd be really thrilled with a magic wand and have it all done in an instant, but I guess it's true - No Pain, No Gain, and I wouldn't learn much by just waving a wand now would I?


Marty got his new (to him) vehicle (his Camry was indeed totaled).  A Toyota 4Runner, 2008 model, bright red.  His area of 'buyer's remorse'? reeks of cigarette smoke.  Oh the joy of trying to get that out.  I haven't offered much advice except to keep the windows down to air out when it's in the garage.  Maybe Fabreze?, vinegar? alternate fragrances?  I'm open to suggestions.


My back doctor referred me to a pain management specialist who in turn wants to inject my back with something and burn the nerves, and I'm really wondering if I should be getting a second opinion.  I wasn't crazy about the back doctor, and while the pain doctor examined me fully, I just don't know that I want to go that route.  He wrote his info in doctor shorthand which I can't even make out, and I've already forgotten what  he called some things, so can't look up on the internet.  Oy!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Stash Report - Week 5, 2013

Whoohoo, I'm getting my stash report in EARLY - for me! hehe.  Since Marty wrecked his car, and as we thought would happen, the insurance company considers it totaled, he's busy looking for a replacement - my goodness cars have become expensive (our last purchase was my Highlander in 2006!).  He has plans to drive a fair distance today, ahem, in 'my' car of course to go look, so we only went to the main service at church so as to give him plenty of time to look.

Alright, back to the subject of this post, my Stash Report (jump over to Patchwork Times for more).  I went looking for yet another yard of fabric for my Belle Luce project - the inner border.  I found one, though at the store I still wasn't keen on it, but bought a yard anyway.  Once home and auditioned on the design wall, I liked it better and so decided I will use it.  I did put the inner border on but will wait until I've added the outer border before posting another picture.  With that said, here's my report for this week:

Used This Week: 0 yards
Used Year to Date: 0 yards
Added This Week: 1 yards
Added Year to Date: 3 yards
Net Used for 2013: -3 yards

There you have it, I've added one more yard to my stash (though actually part of it is being used).  I count used only when completed with binding, so nothing shown used yet this year.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Hopping Aboard

Lately I see so many needlework projects popping up on the quilty blogs I visit.  So OK, I'm jumping on the bandwagon too so that I don't get left behind - I admit, I'm more of a follower than a leader.  In reality, their works are just encouraging me to return to needlework crafts that I use to do a lot of, and some of which I've wanted to do for several years.  

Like this project, which I bought way-y-y-y back in 2006 on one of my trips to the northern wet land.  I bought it from a lady whose company (of one?) is known as The Brass Needle and she was sitting at her booth with some of her wares and working away, and oh my, it was so very enticing, and beautiful!  So I bought one very small kit.  When finished, the design will only measure 3" x 3".  The little basket in this piece is made by weaving one type of thread, and then it is edged in a stem stitch using a boucle' thread - first time I've used that and now my thumb and fingers are a bit tender.  I've never used such a big needle with embroidery before either, but it's one of two that came with the kit (the other not a lot smaller) and was recommended to be used for the basket threads because they're heavier.  It says it has a 'large' eye, large compared to what? a gnat's eye? Oh my but it was hard to thread those things, even using a short length of regular sewing thread put through the eye to make a loop to draw the kit threads through!  It wasn't possible to draw the boucle' through that way, so struggled with getting a good point on the end of the thread and getting a good aim!

Really, I do have a picture of this project, so I suppose I should show it, no?

EdMar Brazilian Embroidery Geraniums kit

Basket and needle.  I don't know if this pattern was just printed too light on the cloth, or if it's faded in the 6+ years I've had it squirreled away, so I'll be doing a bit of looking at the kit photo and the true-size print on the instructions in order to work it.

Two and a half years ago, I purchased an even larger kit while at a quilt show on the coast of that wet land.  It's a lovely heart pattern...appropriate since this month has Valentine's Day, but I'm sure I won't be working on it for a long time. 

EdMar Brazilian Embroidery kit, Ariel's Heart  These threads are all rayon thread, and very slippery - should be interesting!

One of my thoughts with learning Brazilian Embroidery, is that it could be quite lovely on a crazy quilt some day, yet another desire of mine to create.  A good book for learning the stitches is one by Maria A. Freitas The Art of Dimensional Embroidery.  I would also like to try my hand at ribbon embroidery, which I thought was in this book, but I dug out the book and there's none in it...hmmm, guess I'll have to research that more.

Thirty plus years ago, I was an in-home sales consultant for Artcraft Concepts, a needlework company out of Ballston Spa, NY.  They no longer exist, but I still have all my teaching tools and quite a number of projects in boxes that I never started.  The company had embroidery, longstitch projects, plastic canvas, wonderful latchhook rugs and many other needlework projects - remember when all of that was really big back in that era?  I wrote about one of my other projects from the company here. I've done just a little more work on it recently too, as I have 30 minutes of time to work on something while I wait for Nick at his piano lesson, and I've run out of my usual crossword puzzles.

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