Saturday, June 28, 2008

Heart of...thread?

I want to live,
I want to give
I've been a miner for a heart of gold.
It's these expressions I never give
That keep me searching for a heart of gold
And Im getting old.
Keeps me searching for a heart of gold
And Im getting old.

Well, I guess Neil Young wrote about a heart of gold. I gave Jim a heart of yarn! LOL Yes, I made him a little gift of this heart dishcloth tonight. He's been my dishwasher of late without so much as a whimper or a whine! Was he appreciative? Of course he was! He appreciates a nice, thick dishcloth with which to wash dishes. Especially since we don't have a working dishwasher right now. To tell the truth, we have a dishwasher but it's just for looks. It never did work very well and so we've done dishes "by hand" since we moved into this house, oh, about 20 years ago. When I did the dishes on a regular basis, I used that time to think, pray and ponder. Jim says he takes the opportunity to really get his hands clean. Yes, I am thankful to have a husband that will wash dishes, vacuum, dust and even clean the bathtub! I may not put in a full 8 hours at my day job, but once I'm done bending hair, I take my turn at helping Dad. That means I don't get home until 3:30 or 4:00 p.m. I may not always tell him, but the fact that he keeps things from getting out of control at home means a lot to me. Oh, he even does most of the grocery shopping! Retirement suits him! lol

Wedding gift

One more DWR table runner, finished. I decided to curve the edges and use the bias binding. If you look closely, you can see I used two different fabrics in the binding. It's amazing how a mere 19" square of fabric can yield the amount of binding needed for this size project. I am so glad I finally learned how to do the continuous binding technique that allows you to end up with a strip of bias binding with just a little math (very little, otherwise I wouldn't do it! lol). I am also so very glad I found the QuiltSmart method of making Double Wedding Ring quilts. Easy, easy...

Would love to stay and chat, but it's Saturday and I've got a busy day ahead of me. Have a wonderful day, ya'll!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Preemie booties

These little booties are too cute. They worked up pretty fast, too.

I worked on the Double Wedding Ring tablerunner for a while last night. Actually, I got it all quilted and now have to decide if I want to cut curves in order to bind it or to bind it straight. If I do the curved binding, I have to cut my binding on the bias and I'm not sure I'm willing to do that at this point. I have just been really lazy about doing this one. I think I'm a bit depressed with all that's been happening. I've GOT to pull myself out of this hole.

The good news is that Mattie could be coming home in a day or two. According to her Grandma Camille, she is off O2 for 24 hours and only had 4 alarms. She's being moved to a regular room. Thank you, Lord!

Sad news is that Rachael is not doing so well. They were going to reduce the coma meds today to give her a chance to wake up, if she's going to. We're still praying...

Last, but certainly not least, Dad is doing ok. He's in a bit of pain with his legs, but his spirits are still good. Please pray that he heals quickly from this bout with the blisters.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Online retreat

The wonderful online quilt group I belong to is about to begin our online retreat. Unfortunately, the yearly "physical" retreat planned had to be cancelled. So, we will all be participating in an online party! The first swap we'll be doing is a Quiltlet Swap. Here is one I've done. I may get industrious and work on another before the deadline. We were to start with a 6" block. I cheated a bit since this 12" block is one I made in preparation to use on my round robin vest. I decided not to use it and so it has been an orphan block until now. I think it worked up nicely. It's not totally perfect, but that gives it it's own personality. I hope the group deems it good enough to fight over! lol

So much has been happening here. One of our group's granddaughter is fighting for her life after being hit by a car while riding her bike. April's one month old niece is in the hospital struggling with whooping cough AND reflux! Dad has developed huge fluid blisters on his legs that have been debrided and are now bandaged and will need close watching for the next few weeks. Judy has an inner ear infection, Robert's back has been giving him fits and now Joe has a cold! Whew! I think I'll go to bed now. lol

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Courthouse steps finished

I really like this tablerunner. It's the looooongest runner I've ever made. LOL Might even be too long for my table. Hmm... Anyway, I quilted along the seam lines with a wavy stitch and line of it in the border. The chair it's draped over is the rocker/glider that belonged to Mom. It's in my sewing room now. I can sit there and watch television if I so choose. I really don't have enough room for it, but I make it work.

I don't think this runner was even on my UFO list. My next finish will be the DWR runner, though.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Link to Disappearing 9-Patch tutorial

I have tried and tried again to link the 9-patch tutorial but can't get it to work. It keeps telling me it "can't find that blog". If you do a search for "disappearing 9-patch block" you can find the link. I'll post a short version as soon as I work up a few more blocks.
After browsing through a magazine that Deborah gave me for my birthday, I found another 4th of July runner to work on. This one is made with these Courthouse blocks. Good pattern to use up my patriotic scrap pile.

I finished the courthouse steps tonight but will not quilt it just yet. Won't take too long to do that, but I'm not in the mood. Instead, I decided to do a little crocheting. One of our customers told me that she is making these preemie caps and so, nothin' doin' but I HAD to try my hand at it. I still need to thread some ribbon through the little holes in the cap. These are easy to make once you get the pattern figured out. I think I'll round up my scrap yarn to see how many of these I can whip up. It's a nice change from the sewing machine.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A new "flimsy"

I've finished the disappearing 9-patch top. I opted not to put any borders on. It will make a nice size lap quilt. I get so lazy when it comes to putting on borders.

What a yucky day. Well, not really. But, I had a yucky headache all day. I woke up at 3 a.m. with this pain so I got up and took some Aleve. Went back to bed praying it would be better when I awoke. It wasn't. After my shower, I took some sinus meds and that helped some. Every time the weather does something different, my head lets me know.

I haven't decided what to work on next. I suppose I should make a list of the WIPs (works in progress) or UFOs (unfinished objects). I'm just afraid that if I list them, I'll be committed to finish them. Um, I guess that's the idea, huh? Ok, I'll work on that.

I've also finished the Shop Hop online. Now comes the waiting to see if something has been won...

I'll try to work on my list now.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Just playing

Let's see...I could be working on the disappearing 9 patch or the Star Lights or the DWR but, no, I made another bag. These are fun to make. I used, as the base of this bag, two placemats. I fused fabric to one side of the placemat, sewed pockets on both sides of each mat, put in a zipper and zipper pulls and sewed the bottom and sides and there you go. The only batting I used is in the handles. That helps to give them a bit more body. The purse itself stands on it's own with the fusible web.
It's been a stormy night. Not so much here as just east of us. I've been watching the radar from Cannon since one of my friends is stuck on the road midway between here and Lubbock. I hope they stay put until the worst is past.

Tomorrow night I will hopefully have the disappearing 9 patch top finished. I'm putting it on point, so I had to cut some setting triangles to go around the edges. I don't think I'll add another border.

I better get ready for bed. I'd like to get at least 7 hours of sleep sometime!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Getting a jump on July

I think it was Judy that pointed me toward this pattern, or it may have been April. At any rate this 4th of July tablerunner pattern was easy enough to look at and decipher. The link may not show the picture, but if you find "Red, White and Bold" in the column at the left of that page, I think you can get it. I added borders since my table is big enough to accommodate this size. It still needs a binding. I told Judy last night that I just didn't have the "uumph" to do that after all we did yesterday.

Not that we did a lot. lol I made breakfast for Jim and Rob then watched Jim work on Rob's back. I hope you're feeling better soon, Rob! Then Judy and I did our Sunday Walmart visit. I did Dad's shopping and also bought goodies for a little Father's Day BBQ at Dad's. Judy put together a fruit pizza since I wouldn't do it, lol, and it came out great. Such a nice, summer dessert. I cooked hamburgers and sausages on the grill and opened a few bags of chips. It was so hot outside I could barely see when I got back in from the grill. My contacts were in dire need of some moisture by then.

When we first got to Dad's, Joe helped us unload groceries and then he put Dad's new computer chair together. Dad has been needing a chair he can get out of easier. Now he has no excuse not to get on the computer! It's a simple little "guest" chair I found at Office Max. The seat sits high enough that he can pull himself out of it very easily. Judy bought him several items including a new belt, a new bag for the walker and new socks.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Vest, finished!

Yup, I worked on this until I finished it tonight. I added more of the star background to fill the space and then couched some decorative thread around the "sun". At least, that's how I interpreted it. I also added a strip of multi-color batik with stars just below the sun. I thought about making a few more of the tilted blocks, but I didn't have the pattern. Instead, there were a few squares in with the fabric that someone else had made so I added them to that row. I covered every bit of muslin that was showing.


This is the second round this vest has been on. Apparently, they didn't finish it two years ago so the owner decided to let our group have a chance at it. When I got it, there was still quite a bit of white space left as shown in the "before" shots. I was determined to take it back to the owner with no open spaces this time. I hope she likes what we've all done.

When I have something like this to do, I can't rest until it's finished. Being committed to a round robin takes a lot of time but I enjoy the process. I can't wait to see what they've done with my vest. We'll find out next month...

Now it's back to the disappearing 9 patch and the DWR tablerunner that needs to be finished by sometime in July. I also need to make a bag for a client's daughter. For now, I'm going to bed. Busy day at work tomorrow.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

another section on the RR vest

I thought it'd be a good idea to continue the free-form flying geese appliqued on by someone else. So, the bottom right area is where I appliqued the geese I made. I'd never done the free-form flying geese so I was just "winging" it. LOL Anyway, the front of the vest is now done. The back is going to be a pain, I'm afraid. But, I'll tackle it tomorrow night. It's really kind of fun stretching my imagination a bit.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Step one on the vest/Lubbock trip

These tumbling blocks are paper-pieced and then I will applique them onto the vest. I was a little worried about covering the bottom corner of the woven block, but I don't think it will be a problem. Just kinda looks like it's tucked inside. I will tackle the back of the vest next.

Dad and I had an uneventful trip to Lubbock, just as I'd prayed for. Thank You, Lord! They have dismissed him from the Wound Care Center until, and if, he needs them again. His venous closures have done well and he has no open wounds. Dad slept all the way over and all the way back. I don't blame him. I would too, if I didn't have to drive! lol We didn't eat at Sonic today. He wanted a meat burrito so I zipped into Rosa's Cafe drive-thru. Their fajita meat burrito is pretty good. He wanted a milkshake, but they don't serve those there. That's his drink of choice these days. He settled for a Sprite. He asked the girl for a "lime". lol He cracks me up sometimes.

I need to finish quilting the DWR I demo'd at the meeting on Monday. I wanted to get the vest underway first and so now I'm ready to do some quilting. I'm trying really hard to keep my room picked up every night. Time to go do that now.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Busy day

Monday morning started out fairly quiet. I checked email and read some blogs and had my cup of coffee. Then I paid a few bills and did the bank deposit thing. As soon as I was done with that, I called the dentist's office. Yes, my temporary (they're not kidding when they call it "temporary") crown came off again. It happened last Friday night while Judy and I were having dinner at Applebees. Luckily, I've been very conscious of the crown and feel to make sure it's still there before nearly every bite! It's a bit frustrating. But, I did the Poligrip thing and it held until this morning. I did take it off every night and re-grip it because I didn't want it to come loose in the night. So, I went to the dentist and he glued it back on. NOT! This afternoon, a mere 6 hours after he'd done this, I could feel it was loose, again! I reached in with two fingers and just pulled it right off. Back to the Poligrip.. They said they'd call me in if my permanent crown came in today. Obviously, it didn't. But, if it comes in tomorrow, they'll ring me up. Otherwise, I'll have to wait until my scheduled appointment next Monday. The doc is off on a dental trip after Wednesday, so I'm told. And, ya know, the Poligrip seems to hold even better than the "pro" glue. lol

I forgot to mention that I awoke with a stiff neck. I knew it was going to hurt when I woke for a minute or two around 3:30 or so. But, I went right back to sleep. So, after the dentist's app't., I stopped by Judy's office to deliver a piece of Key Lime Pie, a la Weight Watcher style, and she promptly called to get me an app't with the chiropractor. I guess she didn't like that I was having to move my entire body in order to turn my head! lol They took me right away. It still hurts, but I can tell it's better.

Back in the car to do the bank runs. Grabbed a cup of coffee, stopped by Dad's to drop off his piece of pie and off to the monthly quilt group meeting. It was my turn to do the program. I showed them how I do the Double Wedding Ring with the Quiltsmart method. I will never do another DWR any other way, unless someone comes up with a quilt-as-you-go technique. I know there is something similar to a QAYG DWR, but I just cannot get the hang of it. The method I speak of is from the book "Rings That Bind" by Cheryl Phillips and Linda Pysto. I have this book and really like the idea behind it, but I just couldn't get it to work right. I will try again, someday, I'm sure.

Anyhoo, after I did my presentation, we had a drawing for the FQs that were brought to the meeting. Your name is put in the hat for a drawing if you bring a FQ to the meeting. Just before I left, they drew my name! This little pile of FQs is nothing compared to what April won last month, but, hey, it's a win! Ok, Judy, it's your turn!

Meeting over and it was back to Dad's. I fixed him a filet mignon, (yes, he had taken one out to thaw so I could fix it for his lunch), some noodles that Judy fixed yesterday and the piece of Key Lime pie for dessert. While he ate, I added hamburger meat to the leftover red chili I'd made last week for enchiladas. And, I even finished sewing the label to the DWR with buttons that had not been done.

On my way home, I had to go pay another bill, make a deposit and pick up a snack for Jim and me. (I say "me" because you wouldn't say "I" if you didn't say "Jim" now would you?) The following is a little something I found while researching the difference between "you and I" and "you and me" and when either should be used. Just one of my many pet And it's just a rule that pronouns following prepositions in those phrases are always in the objective case. When you're using the objective case, the correct pronoun is me, so the correct prepositional phrase is between you and me.

Most grammarians are sympathetic to people who say between you and I because it's considered a hypercorrection. The theory is that people have been so traumatized by being corrected when they say things such as Ashley and me went to the mall instead of Ashley and I went to the mall that they incorrectly correct between you and me to between you and I.

Well! That was my English lesson for the day! LOL Sorry if it was a boring bit of text. I know that I don't always write well and I don't always speak well. But, there are just a few things that kinda "stick in my craw" and that's one of them.
I've got the final Round Robin vest hanging in my room. I am the last person to work on this vest. Haven't had time to really think about what I'll do. My first thought is to do something on all the small spaces left, but we'll see.

Time to think about dinner..

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Disappearing 9 patch

What a wonderful pattern this is! This fabric was originally intended for something else, but I was not happy with that decision. So, I cut the squares even further, into 4" squares, and started sewing 9 patches. Then I cut the 9 patch blocks to make these.
By playing with the blocks on the flannel wall, rotating every other one 1/4 turn, you can see that a totally different pattern emerges. I like the first one better, but I couldn't resist playing with them to show you.

The rest of today and tonight will be spent getting my act together for tomorrow's meeting. I will be showing the group how I do the applique DWR technique. I've nearly got everything ready. Just need to make a few more arcs and sew some cornerstones on the samples.

Time to shower and go to WalMart for Dad. I ran over this morning to fix his breakfast. He was in good spirits and looked like he feels better. Thank you, Lord!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Nose to the grindstone

Woo Hoo! It's really nice to come into this room and be able to move around so easily. Therefore, I've been able to do a bit of sewing last night and this morning. This is one of the round robin vests due on Monday. I made the star on the front of the vest under the plumed mask. Regina chose a Mardi Gras theme and had the neatest fabrics to work with. I think we only have two more rounds, or months, to finish these vests. Can't wait to see mine!
I chose this paper-pieced star because it's called "Regina's Block". LOL I'd tell you which book I got it from, but I can't think of it right at the moment. I think I took the book down to the print shop to get a spiral binding put on it along with four other books. But, I digress..

These disappearing 9-patch blocks are addicting! I want to get more charm packs to make more of these. Of course, I have enough scraps to cut my own charm packs.
Another block I worked on last night is one block of a tablerunner Judy found online. Again, I can't remember the name. Something like "Triple Play", I think. I was able to figure out the pattern just by studying the picture. So, I will make two more blocks and have a tablerunner for July. Thanks, Judy!

Monday, June 02, 2008

Had to get my fix

Around 11 p.m. last night, I decided to try a new pattern that one of the girls suggested on QOR. It's a disappearing 9-patch. The block on the left was sewn first, then it was cut in quarters. The pieces were then arranged and sewn again to produce the second block. I used some squares from a charm pack I've had (that I found during my cleaning spree) and I plan on using more from my stash to do more of these. Easy, easy. Thanks, Kate!

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Carrot Cake time!!

Yup, I'm finished organizing the sewing room and it's contents. Okay, truth be told, I still need to go through the magazines and books. But, that's just a technicality. So, here are the last two pictures I'll post of the makeover. I Unless the book and magazine organization prove to be photo-worthy.

I am SO tired I'm not sure I'll be able to sew a stitch for a week! lol I'd like to point out one detail in the picture with the spool racks. Yvonne provided us with several sites that detailed sewing room setups. In one of them, they talked about using straws to lengthen the area on one spool dowel in order to hold more than one spool. Works great! I still have more spools I want to add to these but that's another day. Thanks, Yvonne!!

It's almost 10 p.m. and I think I'll sew for a few minutes. I'm not looking forward to tomorrow. I remembered today that I have a dentist's appointment in the morning. It's a follow-up to see if I need a root canal in preparation for a permanent cap. Please pray that I don't need the root canal! I really don't think I will, but I'll let you know.