Thursday, March 3, 2022

Let it Be!

Funny how a blog post keeps me focused on my goals.
There are no finishes,
but there is certainly progress.
Posh Penelope is pieced!

I loved piecing the individual blocks;
but boy, oh, boy,
putting the blocks together was a challenge!
I like to think of myself as a precision piecer.
Well, that just did not happen with this project.
Not a one of those points on the flower petals lines up and most are chopped off.
I don't know if letting go makes me happy or disappointed in myself.
I decided to just let it be!
Hoping a good quilting job will disguise the imperfections.

I finished two more blocks of If the Hat Fits.

Thoroughly enjoyed my Sue Spargo retreat in Tucson.
I had SO much fun, that I signed up to take the same class again
at Madeline Island at the end of July.
The plan is to finish what I started.
Three meals a day, no responsibilities and stitching with like-minded friends...
what could be more enjoyable.

I also helped my granddaughter make a quilt for her teacher who is expecting her first child.
What a joy it was to share my passion with her.

At Home in the Woods is on my frame.
This will take awhile as I am stitching over every edge of the appliqued shapes.
I am using a microquilter thread that disappears nicely.

I have managed to keep current with my Trade Winds BOM, 
but will be unable to show my progress due to Sue's rules.
All I can share is that is stinking cute!

We are headed to Colorado for a week in March 
and then I will join my sister in Santa Fe to take an urban sketching class...something new for me. 
Sis is already a wonderful watercolorist.
We will see if I can catch on to it.

 I am so happy I have my stitching in this sad and unpredictable world.
It calms my anxious mind!
Getting outside and hiking helps too.

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

A Little Waffling!

Did not take too long to lose my resolve. 
A quick wall hanging per the request of my daughter.

I love how she displays the quilt I made her last year. 

Even though I waffled for just a moment,
I have made progress.
1. Finish HOME in time for my son's anniversary!
Washed and ready to gift.
I used a wool batt and it is so soft and cuddly.

The first 2 blocks of 'If the Hat Fits' are done.

And a few more animals have been added to my mini-Folktales.
I love the texture on the crocodile and the flowers on the Baobob tree.

This is our Kenya camp where the giraffe stood outside our tent.

Next month I should have completed the last block of Posh Penelope.
The fabrics are purchased and all but one block has been constructed.
If I keep up this pace, I could conceivably complete my list by the end of the year.

However, I will be going to Tucson for a Sue Spargo retreat to do her Indigo vases class
and my first 3 blocks of my Trade Winds BOM are on their way.
Both of these projects will take quite a bit of time to do.

I have gotten hooked on Wordle like many others.
At least it is one word a day, 
so I cannot play it all day.
Thank goodness, because I love playing it.



Sunday, January 9, 2022

Binge Binding and 2022 goals

Nothing new on the piecing front,
but boy, oh boy, have I gotten lots of binding done.
Getting my longarm meant I could get all my WIPs quilted.
However, they all just went in a pile because binding is my least favorite part of the process.
It took lots of will power, but all I did was bind last month and I got 5 done.
I have 1 left...
 My Garden by Heart to Hand
I decided to finish it as an abbreviated version
 since all it was doing was gathering dust in my closet. 

For 2022,
instead of resolving to lose weight,
I decided a list of quilt projects I would like to start or finish might be more realistic;
and let's face it,
a whole lot more fun.

1. Finish HOME in time for my son's anniversary in March (border, quilt and bind)
2. Border my red and white mini quilt and add some green applique (border and design)
3. Finish Posh Penelope by Sew Kind of Wonderful for my daughter before Spring (need fabrics)
4. Finish Easter pillows for the girls 
5. Complete 'If the Hat Fits' before Halloween for my daughter
6. Continue to work on my mini-Folktails
7. Continue to work on Sunrise Scraps by Edyta Sitar
8. Start and hopefully keep current on Sue Spargo's Trade Winds BOM
9. Finish At Home in the Woods (just needs borders, then quilt and bind)
10. Finish my Laura Heine collage
10. If any energy and time left, return to Yoko Saito quilt or finish Fresh Cut or Squash Squad!

that seems like a large laundry list with only two new starts.
Want to place wagers on whether I complete my list
and more importantly,
don't add to it with something new!!
Quiltcon is in Phoenix in February where temptation awaits.

Hope everyone had joyful holiday season.
Now on to 2022.

P.S. About resolutions...I did resolve to exercise more each day and cut out sweets
 in hopes of losing weight...good luck with that...LOL!

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

This, That and Thanksgiving Wishes

Happy to report that my nephew and his wife loved the quilt!
And I spent a lovely 4 days enjoying a long overdue visit with my sister and a trip to the ocean.

Halloween is a big deal in our family.
My son lives on Phantom Way and every year goes all out with the decorations.
And everyone dresses up.
I was Jane!

Cannot help but share pics of my grandkids.

Wanda Joy and I have been busy as usual:
 A Christmas gift for my son's family 
quilted with an E2E design called Swirly Snowflakes.

I custom quilted this for my friend, Deb.
When I saw she was piecing it,
I requested to quilt it for her so I could practice my open space design work.
The center I copied from Linda Hrcka of the Quilted Pineapple,
but the borders were my own design.
Next week, I will be taking an online class from Angela Walters on feathers.

Even though the strength in my hand has not returned,
I have attempted to do some hand stitching.
Progress on my mini Folk Tails.
I love the Baobob tree! 
It is from Sue Spargo's new book, 
Forest for the Trees.
This is all I want to work on now! 
It is so fun to remember our trip as I design my piece.

Wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!
May your dressing be tasty.
May your turkey be plump.
May your potatoes and gravy 
have nary a lump.
May your yams be delicious
and your pies take the prize.
And may your Thanksgiving dinner
stay off your thighs!

But most of all,
may your home be filled with the warmth of loved ones.

Yes, I googled Thanksgiving wishes.
And I still have not been able to pass the torch...
I will be doing the cooking.



Saturday, October 16, 2021

A Trip of a Lifetime!


The last time I posted,
I was anxious about our trip to Africa.
Well, we made it. 
Travel during a pandemic is not easy,
but the hoops we had to jump through were well worth it.
It seemed like we were the only people there at times.
And they say because of the lower number of tourists,
the animal sightings were more frequent.

Where to begin!
I guess at the beginning.

We started in Cape Town.
Saw penguins and hiked Table Mountain,
one of the new Natural Wonders of the World.

Next stop was Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe.
The falls were cool,
but I loved the interaction we had with the elephants 
at a sanctuary for orphans.

Then Kenya
 where we saw giraffe, elephant, hippo, lions, hyena, 
cheetahs, Cape Buffalo and baboons on our very first game drive.
And believe me,
we got up close to all of them.

We hopped from camp to camp on small bush planes,
which was an experience in itself.

We visited Tanzania for the great migration of wildebeests.
And they were everywhere!
Estimated we saw 10,000 of them in just a small area,
if not more.

And our accommodations and the food were fabulous!

Our last stop was my favorite...
There we trekked with the mountain gorillas two days in a row.
On the second day,
one of the females gave me a good shove in the back 
knocking me into the arms of a tracker.
It was an experience I will never forget!
I loved the people of Africa the best!!
On our way to the airport,
our driver stopped so I could learn to weave a basket.
It was a trip of a lifetime that I would highly recommend!

Since returning home and recovering from jetlag,
I have been busy in my sewing room.
First up was quilting Peppermint Twist.

Then I pieced and quilted Bjorn Bear by Elizabeth Hartmann
for my sister's new grandson due on New Year's Eve.
My nephew and his wife love camping, so this was the perfect backing fabric.
I am usually not picky about backing,
but fell in love with this one.

Had fun quilting this sampler for my friend, Deb.
It was a mystery BOM program that I designed for TOWQS 
several years ago.

Last week I had steroids injected into my neck
 in hopes of regaining the strength in my right hand.
Keeping my fingers crossed it works
and planning my smaller version of Sue Spargo's Folk Tails.
I do have a start.
Will finish piecing the backgrounds together 
and then start adding more trees and animals.


Saturday, August 28, 2021

Wanda Joy has been on fire!

 Since our return to the valley of the sun,
my longarm has been on fire!
It has been too hot to go outside,
so I practice my FMQ.
First up was my Rock the Block 
by Sew Kind of Wonderful.
Here are some details:
I really got confident with feathers! 

Next up was my Let's Stitch a Figurative Quilt 
from a Natalia Bonner class I did online.

I must say this one is quilted to death,
but it was a learning quilt.
My favorite block.
And I love that middle border design.
I wish the quilt had had a border instead of the endless neutral fabric.
That rainbow filler got to be so tedious to quilt over and over,
but practice did improve the look of them. 
Pebbles is what I mastered with this one. 

You may think I have lost my mind;
but with all the craziness in the world,
we leave for Africa in less than a week.
Trying my hardest not to panic!

In the meantime,
I will try to stay calm by making more units for my 
Sunrise Scraps quilt.
My sewing circle of friends donated a lovely group of pinks and purples 
along with some great old cheddars from Jo Morton.

Stay safe and hug your loved ones!


Monday, August 2, 2021

Mind Games

Hometown, made with Kathy Schmitz's Home fabric line.
It was a kit I purchased as a wedding gift for my son and his wife.
Now perhaps they will get it as an anniversary gift...LOL!

Just have the sashing and borders to finish. 
The original pattern has an intricate flying geese border.
I will opt for a simple fabric border.

Do you have a system for piecing large quilts?
I never completely cut a quilt up front.
 I have been burnt in the past when the directions were wrong.
So I cut one block at a time.

With this quilt, however, the instructions are so complex 
that it is hard to determine what fabrics are used where
 and what their cutting size should be.
Thankfully, my friend Cyndi had made the quilt
 and assured me the cutting directions were correct.
I cut all the strips from the first 5 fabrics, which allowed me to piece the first house...
a monumental leap of faith for me.
FYI, the layout did have an error in it, 
but that was easily corrected.

It was hard for me to stay engaged due to the lack of color and fabric variety,
but I do love how it turned out.
It felt like a marathon game of Monopoly.
So I played mind games with myself....
piece 2 blocks and you can eat chocolate.
Then there was the countdown...
hooray, first row done;
now you are halfway done;
now there are only 6 more blocks to piece.
You can do it!
I needed a cheering squad.
I also wrote blog posts in my mind while I was sewing...
finish these last 2 rows and you can post!

With the help of my Audible book,
This Tender Land,
I finally muscled through the last block.
Even though I enjoyed the book,
it was somewhat like this quilt...
easy to put down but I was compelled to finish it!


Let it Be!

Funny how a blog post keeps me focused on my goals. There are no finishes, but there is certainly progress. Posh Penelope is pieced! I loved...