Sunday, July 30, 2006

Meme and Stash Quilts

Since I'm reading about so many people, I thought I'd give this a try. Since I'm typically very longwinded, this was harder than I thought.

One Word for -
1. Yourself: searching
2. Your partner: methodical
3. Your hair: growing
4. Your Mother: resigned
5. Your Father: deceased
6. Your favorite item: books
7. Your dream last night: unknown
8. Your favorite drink: tea
9. Your dream home: ranch
10. The room you are in: cluttered
11. Your pleasure: reading
12. Your fear: falling
13. Where you want to be in ten years: shore
14. Who you hung out with last night: Mike
15. What you're not: proactive
16. Your best friends: hysterical
17. One of your wish list items: peace
18. Your gender: female
19. The last thing you did: binding
20. What you are wearing: pajamas
21. Your favorite weather: autumn
22. Your favorite book: none
23. Last thing you ate: ice cream
24. Your life: okay
25. Your mood: calm
26. The last person you talked to on the phone: Keri
27. Who you are thinking about right now: /David

I also want to thank Judy L. for approving me to be a member of the ring. It's fun being part of a group so you can talk quilting for as long as you want. I like the fact that our lives enter into it too. I've taken up Vicky's challenge, so there will be no fabrice purchases for the month of August. I have one quilting book on order already, so I'm committed to buying that. But that will be it for the month.(crossing fingers here)
Have a great day and talk to you soon!

Friday, July 28, 2006

I just came from Judy L's blog. I hope I didn't break any rules by clicking to join her new ring. If I'm still on the waiting list, I'll remove it until she tells me otherwise.
Judy's gone back to the original ring. I've taken the new info off.

My Mom called me yesterday to tell me my aunt Helen from Las Vegas passed away. She was my Mom's last remaining sibling, and 5 years younger than Mom. It hit me harder, I think. I'm an only child, and so are both of my cousins. So I don't have a lot of family. Mom said that my aunt had been reclusive for so long, living out west, that it didn't hurt so bad. That makes me so sad. I just wanted to note her passing. She leaves behind one son, my cousin Gary, who is 5 years older than me. He was married for a while but no kids. I'm going to try to maintain contact with him. My one other cousin, Tom, lives in NC and doesn't talk to any family at all. Mike says I'm lucky, and I know I am, to have him and our kids. They are MY family. I also have his family(he's one of six)-and we're a big, loud Irish American family. So I'll count my blessings.
On a happier note, a friend of mine opened a new quilt shop in North Chelmsford, MA. It's called Mill Girl Quilts. She and her sister took over the business from another lady. If you get a chance, they do have an online shop too.
The 2 photos are of a BOM I participated in a couple of years ago. I did 5 blocks and got bored out of my mind. So a friend of mine finished the piecing for me in exchange for me quilting one of her tops. Then I quilted and bound it. I have to say, I love the Baptist Fan and it goes so good with almost everything. I'm putting it in our local show at the end of September. That's the quilt that started me thinking that I don't want to just follow along anymore. Of course I got sucked into another BOM this year by the same friend. And she has offered to finish the Harvest Spice quilt for me. Think she wants to barter again? I've decided that Harvest Spice is going to be a wedding gift for my son and his fiancee. So I'm going to do the whole thing myself. And I swear, I won't buy any more kits. I still have 3 Jinny Beyer kits I bought at her studio/shop 4 years ago. One is a tote bag, so I should at least do that one. The rest I may just put into my stash.
Dang, this got so long, I'd better stop.
Melanie asked about my longarm. I'll talk about that in another post.
Even though this forum is basically anonymous(we don't really know each other) it's still a way to reach out and I feel better. Thanks.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

I just tried to leave a comment on Nancyquilts blog but it bounced back. Told me that it was because of an SPF she has. Here's what I wrote:

I just finished reading your archives and all I can say is WOW! What a prolific lady you are. I have to tell you-I noticed your birthday. Mine is Jan 8th, so we're kind of like soul sisters, right?I love all the quilts you've made and reading little bits of your life. You are very good at describing the everyday things. I'm looking forward to getting to know you better through your blog.Thanks for the experience.

So, Nancy if you read this, please let me know how to correspond with you.
I'm still hoping to be accepted into the Stash Quilts blog ring, so maybe that will make it easier to write to more people. I try to leave comments on most of the blogs I read, it's kind of like answering someone when they speak to you, I guess.

Started physical therapy yesterday. My neck does feel better this morning, I have to admit. I've not been feeling too well this morning, so I'm running behind getting upstairs to another customer quilt. This one was made with denim and home dec fabric so it weighs a ton.
My new sewing table that I ordered from an online office furniture site has a dent in the top. So now I have to call them. I have a 5 year limited warranty on it so they shouldn't give me a hard time, I hope. I can't wait to actually have a sewing room, I've never had one before. Maybe once everything is in one place, I'll be able to enjoy sewing again.
Well, I have to get my butt in gear and go to "work". If anyone can tell me what the SPF stuff means, I'd sure appreciate it. Till later......

Monday, July 24, 2006

Here's a couple of photos of the Country Cottage Quilt. The first one shows the center, and the next is the whole quilt. The customer just came and picked it up, and said she liked it.
This is why I haven't been able to do too much of my own thing this past week.
Other than this, I'm still working on the binding for the animal baby quilt. At least the weather has broken for a few days-the weatherman is saying it'll be lower humidity and temps in the '80s until the middle of the week.
I've been reading lots of blogs this summer and I envy everyone's enthusiasm for quilting. I'm trying to keep mine going, believe me. It's hard not having the time or energy to piece or applique. If anyone reads this, I'd love to hear how you all keep the spark alive.

Friday, July 21, 2006

Although my picture is kind of dark, this is a little quilt I made from scraps in my stash. I put this together to show some friends how simple it is to make a quilt. I won some fat quarters as a door prize last year, so they are the rails, and luckily I had some nice fabric to make a couple of borders.
I don't have pictures of a lot of the quilts I've made, but I'm trying to do better.
I'm still working on the custom quilt, just wanted to take a break.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Nothing quilty going on here lately. I've been busy with a customer's quilt since Monday. It's the Countryside Cottage BOM from Joann's. She wants it exactly like the picture on the pattern. Can I say I hate custom??????????
Yesterday was Mike's birthday, and he had a great day. Our son and fiancee joined in for the gift giving, she's definitely a keeper. He and I went to the Monticello Raceway Casino, and came home only down $70.00. We had dinner at the buffet, and it was an all-round relaxing afternoon and evening.
I've got the binding sewn onto the front of the animal baby quilt, and will start hand stitching it down this evening.
I can't wait for the bathroom to be done, then all the stuff that belongs in there will be out of my sewing area. Mike and our daughter are painting as we speak, a nice soft yellow. All new fixtures, right down to the floor.
My eyes are dilated right now so the screen is shimmering in front of me. I was in the eye doctor's examining room for over an hour, having tests done to make sure I don't have glaucoma and that the floaters aren't getting any worse. They have all sorts of new machines to test vision now, it's gotten very precise.
We're going out to dinner tomorrow evening with another couple. The husband has the same birthday as Mike. We're doing dinner and a movie. Not only are they "going out to dinner" friends, she's started quilting, and wants me to machine quilt her tops. She's in my group that meets once or twice each month.
That's about it for now. I'm going to try to show some photos soon. They're all in Mike's computer, so I have to email them to mine.
Have a great evening.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

This and that

Mike keeps telling me I have to practice time management. I've even taken classes at MQX on how to schedule days so I can do the stuff I want to do. Sometimes, I think its' hopeless.

Anyway, not too much quilty to talk about. I had to go to the Quilt Basket shop yesterday to meet with customers. 2 dropped off and 2 picked up. So it was a good day. Since I'm still getting light-headed when I drive(the surgeon says it's not related to the spinal fusion surgery), Mike dropped me off, went to his mom's, and then picked me up. We went to Cracker Barrel for lunch as a treat before going to West Point for food shopping. But, I'm getting off the subject here.

Whenever I'm at the shop, I wander up and down the aisles. This is a beautiful shop-light and bright. I see something new every time I'm there. However, since I've made up my mind to try to use my stash, I wander and nothing hits me. The kits look too perfect, I prefer a pattern where I can use what I have. I was talking to one of my customers and told her that I was making the Harvest Spice quilt and that it's my last kit for a long time. She looked at it and remarked about how many scraps I'll have left over when I finish it. Dang-she was right, and I make piles of the triangles I get from it for leaders and enders. That way, they're not just orphan pieces, and maybe, just maybe I'll use them.

Sitting here, I'm thinking about the animal baby quilt. All I have to do is machine sew the binding onto the front, and I can hand finish it in the evenings. My friend's daughter had the baby on Thursday-a little girl, Jessica Ann, weighing in at 6 lbs. Not bad for being over 3 weeks early. So I have to get on the stick and do that binding. Then it will be done and I can get on with other things. I have a custom quilt that I have to get done this week, fun.

Time to shower and get ready for church. Then, we have another graduation party this afternoon. It's supposed to be near 100 degrees-I hope they have AC.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

It's addictive!

I find myself reading so many people's blogs everyday! I love this little glimpse into their lives. Only problem is: I sit here when I should be working. A customer called yesterday and asked if her quilt would be ready for me to meet her this Saturday at the Quilt Basket, and I said sure...
Then I went up and looked at the dimensions. I have to do it. My bank account requires it. lol
I just have to eat breakfast, shower and get my butt in gear.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

A good day...

I had my followup at the surgeon's office yesterday. Only 2 weeks since the surgery(herniated disc) and he gave me the okay to go back on the longarm!!!!!!! He told me to take breaks every 20-30 minutes, and to start small. I'll take care of that animal baby quilt this morning, load another small one for tomorrow and call it a day.
I picked up "Classic Four Block Applique Quilts" by Gwen Marston yesterday. My son had given me a Borders gift card for my birthday, and I was just waiting for something special to use it on. I love hand applique, but I don't do enough of it. I like the idea of having a basket of hand work near my chair to do at night while DH is watching TV.
Here's a photo of the "Road to Ireland" quilt I did a few years ago. It's from "Fat Quarter Quilts" by M'lissRae Hawley. It's quilted with Linda Taylor's Feather Meander. I keep it draped over my Hinterberg floor hoop that I haven't used since I started machine quilting.
I have these great, bright fat quarters that have been calling my name. I think they'll become either a Yellow Brick Road or maybe I'll cut them up into squares for 4 patches. I still have 5 blocks on the Harvest Spice BOM to cut out and stitch. Again, I swear-no more kits!!!
I have a question for anyone out there. How do you bring yourself to start thinning out your magazines? They are taking over way too much space in my whole house. But it breaks my heart to try to go through them and tear out what I want to keep.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Here's another baby quilt I finished recently. This was made for another friend's grandbaby. It was made entirely from my stash. I love the way this quilt came out. The baby it was made for was born on 5/28/06.
I pieced the backing for the animal quilt, and sewed the binding together. So, it's ready to go on the longarm.
On another subject, my followup visit to the surgeon is tomorrow. I'm going with my daughter and we're going to make it a girls' day out. We haven't done that in a very long time. So I'm looking forward to it.

We're even going to a quilt shop. I've promised not to spend the whole afternoon in there.
While we're out, I'm going to stop at Borders. I ordered one of Gwen Marston's books, and they just called me to tell me that it's in for me to pick up.
I have 5 more Harvest Spice blocks to cut out, and I am not buying any more kits for a very long time. I swear.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

This is the baby quilt I finished for my friend's grandbaby. It doesn't show up too well, but the outer border is a bright purple, the inner is obviously orange, and the panel is from a LQS. I'm going to bind it in yellow.

Lazy Day

The quilting day was a lot of fun, but I'm paying for it today. There's a lot of pain so I took a couple of Tylenol and I'm hoping for the best. A very nice lady on one of my longarm lists that had the same surgery as mine told me that she took a picture of her machine with her to the surgeon to get the okay to go back to work. I think I'll do the same.
My 2 friends who are just starting out with quilting are coming along fine. As a matter of fact, one finished her top and pieced her backing yesterday and handed the quilt to me to do. I didn't start with this little group looking for customers, but it's a nice perc.
I brought my QD block to hand piece, and decided that for right now, it's not the project for me. I think I'll dig out some of my applique and work on that.
When Mike gets home, I'll have him put my sewing machine up on the dining room table. I've got the backing for the baby quilt ready to piece and I want to get the binding put together so I can have the quilt ready when the baby is born next month. Since I'm going to start back on the longarm with small projects, it'll be one of the first ones.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Quilting Day

Since I can't go back on the longarm machine just yet, I've been scavenging around my house to ward off the boredom of recuperation.
A good friend's daughter is having a baby next month, so of course I told my friend that I would make a quilt. That was back in December. I finished the top yesterday. I'll post a photo when I upload from camera to computer. I procrastinated my butt off until there were no excuses left. She told me the nursery is decorated in a Noah's Ark theme, so for months I looked for a bright Noah's Ark panel. I went to Quilters' Attic and finally found an animal panel. No ark but close enough.
I've been told that babies like bright, crayon colors, and this panel fits the bill. I had some great crayon bright fabrics in my stash so I did 2 borders. I don't have any single fabric big enough for the back, so I'll piece more brights together.
It's funny. I put things off and then when I finally get them done, I tell myself "Gee that was easy." So why do I keep procrastinating? There's a question for the ages.

Today I'm going to a quilting day. I realized that the only way I was going to get anything done was to schedule it. So, several of us get together once or twice a month to quilt. We've recruited a couple of ladies who've always wanted to quilt but just haven't taken the time to learn, and another friend and I take turns helping them.
After I finished the baby quilt top, I sat down and prepared my Quilted Diamonds block to take with me today. Since I'll be the only "teacher",, I didn't want to have to stop in the middle of machine piecing, so a hand piecing project fits the bill. I don't know if I'll do all of the 101 blocks in the book. I have the attention span of a gnat so I lose interest in long range projects. But I'll give it a try.
Two of my friends are nurses and I'm going to ask them if it's normal to feel this bad for this long after surgery. I don't have my followup until Tuesday, but I'd like to hear what my friends have to say.
This has gotten very long and I'm off to get ready. The sun is shining, the temperature is comfortable, it's going to be a nice day.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Rough night

I was up very early this morning. Last night was not a good one. I'm trying to learn to not sleep on my stomach, not good for the neck incision. But it was the only way I could sleep, so I woke up a lot with a lot of pain in my neck, shoulders and upper arms.
I'm planning on cutting out some Quilted Diamonds pieces to take with me on Saturday. I found some beautiful batik fat quarters in my stash that I had forgotten about. I swear I'm going to start washing everything as soon as it comes into the house! I spent last evening washing and pressing, and I'm sure that contributed to my bad night.
I will have the house to myself this evening, so I think I'll work on the baby quilt that needs to be finished by next month.
Since I haven't been on my longarm for almost 2 weeks, I have to run the auto warmup and give her a good oiling.
I want so badly to be able to stay home this fall and work my business and maybe expand it into making quilts on commission. I don't want to get back on that bus! I am such a homebody, which surprises the @#$% out of me. I used to want to be out all the time, doing stuff. Now I'm happy when I'm home, even though home is permanently under construction. I love vacations, but I love coming home more.
Enough for now; obviously I haven't had enough coffee. lol

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Okay, this is me. Now, how do I get this in my profile?

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

I watched my Linda Franz DVD this afternoon, so I'm ready to go back to doing some hand piecing. This is the first time I've watched it all the way through. I started as a hand piecer about 13 years ago, and she talked about things my teacher never mentioned.
I get enthusiastic about things and then all the steam goes out of it. Since I'm going to make these diamonds scrappy with my stash, hopefully that won't happen this time.
Hope everyone's having a great 4th!

Using my stash

Last summer, I was watching the Quilters News Network, and I sat in complete fascination for 2 hours watching Linda Franz. She wrote "Quilted Diamonds" both 1 and 2. I ordered the book, which comes with a tutorial dvd, and started making the diamonds, using my stash. I figured that would be a good use of it. Of course, life got in the way and I stopped. But now I'm getting the itch again. I also want to make the Smoky Mountain Stars quilt on Bonnie Hunter's website. I love her work.
I have to make a baby quilt for the grandbaby of one of my friends. The nursery is decorated in a Noah's ark theme. I found a panel with really bright animals on it, and I'm going to use 2 fabrics that I've had for a couple of years. Really bright crayon colors. Mike and I were thinking of making baby quilts for sale back then. Yeah right. Anyway, since we don't know the sex of this baby, orange and purple are perfect!
Since I can't go on the longarm until the surgeon gives his okay, I'm going to have Mike pull out some of my fabric. He has to do it because right now I can't lift anything.
Happy 4th of July to anyone who reads this. I'll be by myself for a good part of the day, Keri is working, and Mike has a parade. So I'll be vegging and playing with my stash!!!
Have a great day,

Sunday, July 02, 2006

It's Sunday

Mike is working in the bathroom. He took it down to the studs, and we bought all new stuff to go in there.
I did some piecing yesterday. I was going crazy so I pulled out a BOM block that I've had cut out for awhile. I call it Harvest, and I got the kit from Quilter's Attic in Pine Bush. I'm hoping that I can go on my longarm and do a simple panto on a customer's quilt by Friday.
I'd like to try putting in some photos, so I may try that later today.