Thursday, December 28, 2006

Advent Calendar




Throughout the Christmas season, many of you have shared your Advent Calendars. I decided to wait until ours had all of the bears on it. I made this about 15 years ago and it is a much loved tradition in our house. Now our youngest places a bear on the tree every day in December, leading up to Christmas. The tree is needlepoint on plastic canvas and the bears are counted cross stitch on perforated paper. I did a lot of counted cross stitch...a long time ago!

Our Christmas was wonderful, although quite different for us! Our son worked on Christmas Eve until 8:30pm, arriving home from school about 10:00. We went to Midnight Mass at 11. The service was beautiful, and my favorite part is always when we all light candles, the lights are dimmed and we sing Silent Night. It truly brings home the spirit of the season.

We arrived home from church at about 12:30 and we decided to open presents. I popped some cinnamon rolls in the oven and we opened gifts while they baked. The kids all seemed pleased with their gifts, my husband was delighted with the Sizzlers Race Track and GameBoy that I gave him and I loved all of my gifts. Nothing quilty to share, but I did receive a beautiful leather bound (Large Print!) Bible, some gift cards, including one to Sur La Table and a beautiful silver chain for the cross I wear every day.

The best gift of the evening was the one my son gave to my husband. When he was little and we lived on Long Island, we were New York Islanders fans. Every season my DH would take Andrew to a few games. They were the source of many fond memories. Andrew texted me a few days before Christmas and told me he was getting his father tickets to an Islanders game, only this time, he would drive up to NY (about 2.5-3 hours from here) and he would pay for everything so he could give his father what his father gave him all those years. He said he didn't know who this gift would be more meaningful for...him or his dad. Well, from the expression on my DH's face, I know it will be very meaningful for his dad! He wrapped the tickets in a note that said, "Just like old times". It had to be the most thoughtful gift he could have given. The kid did good! :o)

While the kids slept in on Christmas morning, DH and I headed to 9am mass (after going to bed at 2:30am!). My parents, sister and nephew stopped by in the afternoon, then we all headed to my brother's for a little while. We came home, as is our tradition, and had a big Italian meal...2 kinds of lasagna, chicken parmagiana, Caesar Salad, bread and an ice cream cake for dessert. After dinner DH and the two older children headed to the movies to see "Eragon". The younger one didn't want to see it, so I stayed home with her.

I enjoyed Christmas so much this year...even with the changes to our traditions! This was the first year we haven't had a "believer" in the house, so it was different, but very nice. I've started taking down the decorations and getting the house back together. And now I'm off to take my daughter and her friend to Blockbuster so they can rent movies for the sleepover they're having tonight!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas!





Wishing you and your family a joyous Christmas!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Tree Topper




On the first day of school in my second year of teaching, a little third grader came into my classroom and promptly made a beeline for the space under my desk. Once there he sniffled and cried for most of the morning. I let him be...I figured when he was ready to come out, he would. Richie did come out eventually and he and I became fast friends.

When Christmas came, Richie gave me a special gift...a Christmas mug (which I still have) and an adorable little teddy bear. Right before Christmas that year, I met my husband to be. As we were decorating our first Christmas tree, we were looking for something to put on top of the tree. It was late and we didn't want to go out shopping for a star or an angel. As a temporary solution, we took Richie's little bear and tied him on top of the tree. We never did find another tree topper that year, and in the years that followed we couldn't bring ourselves to put anything else up on the tree. So, here it is, 22 Christmases later and Richie's bear is still on the top of the tree!

I wish I knew what happened to Richie!

Monday, December 18, 2006

Trimming the tree

Our tree has sat without ornaments for 2 weeks. Saturday night we finally decorated the tree. Sorry the picture is blurry! The tree stands out much better this year because I painted the paneling a lighter color over the summer and it doesn't blend into the wall anymore!

I've been sick for the last week and haven't done much at all. I called in sick today because I just didn't think I'd make it through the morning...and I didn't want to share what I have with the kindergarteners! So, I thought I'd share something with you...a few of my favorite ornaments.







First I have my little tree. There are just a few smaller ornaments on it, but this is the first year we've decorated it, usually it just has lights on it.






















This is the first Christmas ornament we bought. We got it on our honeymoon. Since we were buying a house, we cancelled our trip to Bermuda and drove up through New England. We found this in a little shop in Newport, RI.











When my children were little, before I got lazy, I made ornaments for each of us every year. Often they were done in counted cross stitch. This was the year of the gingerbread ornaments. They were stitched on brown Aida cloth...wish I could find more of this because I would love to make one of these for my youngest, who wasn't born when I made these!








And this little glass snowman was one that I bought 2 years ago for Christmas. I find that I'm accumulating more of these antique looking glass ornaments in recent years...they are so pretty, but fragile!

Yesterday we had our Christmas pageant at church. The children did a wonderful job. They told the story of the nativity with a twist...it was a takeoff of "Charlie's Angels" and was very cute. My daughter was one of the 3 angels and did great.

Today will be spent finishing a customer quilt (the last before Christmas!) and taking naps on the sofa. A rough day...I know. :o)

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Naked Lemons

What to do? I have 10 naked lemons, stripped of their zest, waiting for something delicious to be made from them. Aside from lemonade, do you have any family favorites that I could make? Let me know!

Why do I have naked lemons? Well, last summer another blogger was making limoncello and I thought, "I'd like to try that!" But, my parents were heading to Italy in late August and they said they'd bring some back for me, so I didn't bother. Long story short, when they tried to buy it, they were told that the sellers couldn't guarantee that it would make it back to them in the states, so they didn't bother getting it. Fast forward to last night when my DH and I enjoyed a wonderful Italian meal at a new little restaurant near us. At the end of our meal, they served us some of their limoncello and it was wonderful! So, I decided to try it. I found a recipe on the internet for limoncello that would be ready in a week instead of about 40-60 days, so I'm trying that first. If it's not all the great, I'll try the longer recipe. I just know that I need to give it a try! I'll let you know how it goes...

And please send me some recipes! Thanks!

One last note...blogger told me again that I could upgrade and I did...it seemed pretty painless, I made sure to check and see if my email address shows in my profile and this is my first post...here goes....

Friday, December 08, 2006

Interesting...

Every time I log in to post, blogger asks if I want to update to the new blogger. So today, I had a little time and thought I'd finally give it a go. I sign in to my account and it takes me right to my dashboard. Not a word about updating to the new blogger! I look around, can't find anything asking me to click here in order to update. So, I logged out, figuring I'd do it later. Later comes and still, no Blogger Beta! Think they don't want me to switch anymore? Maybe they've realized how inept I am when it comes to the computer and are just too afraid that I'll mess up their system too!

If that's the case, they are very smart people!

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Color Ranges...




As promised, here is a picture of the purple and orange log cabin quilt. I absolutely love this quilt, yet it is so far out of my color range that I never would have thought to make it! I tend to stick with my favorites...green, burgundy, tan and navy. I do venture out into pastels, brights with black...but never in my wildest imagination would I have come up with this...and it is so stunning! I quilted for it a customer who is making it for her own customer. It will be turned into a duvet cover.

Once I finished quilting the log cabin, I started wrapping Christmas presents. I have a good start on that now...I know in another 2 weeks I'll be rushing to finish the rest. Now I'm ready to cast on another pair of socks so I can work on those while we watch the Rutgers/West Virginia game tonight. My son drove down to WV yesterday to watch his best friend play for Rutgers. It should be a good game...and hopefully another win for Rutgers!

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Socks

 

I just downloaded Picasa and thought I'd try posting a picture...we'll see if it works! These are the socks that I finished the other night. They didn't turn out too bad for my first pair, hopefully each pair after this will get better! I didn't do too badly with matching the stripes, although they're not perfect. But as they say, done is better than perfect!

I've been getting ready for Christmas here...my youngest and I put the lights on the house yesterday and did most of the indoor decorating, except for the tree. That won't go up for another week or so. My Christmas cards are ready, just waiting for the stamps. Most of the gifts are bought, I'll be having a big wrapping session sometime next week. I love being ready for the holidays early...I seem to enjoy them so much more without the last minute rush! And yes, I always had my assignments for school done early too...I don't handle pressure well! :o)

Not much quilting going on, although I am quilting a customer's log cabin quilt. It's done in purples and oranges and is one of the prettiest I've ever seen! I'll post pictures when it's finished.

We've been unseasonably warm here in NJ...our temps were in the 70's today and will be the same tomorrow...at least until a storm blows through and drops them down into the 40's. Maybe THEN it will feel like Christmas! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

My accent

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: Philadelphia

Your accent is as Philadelphian as a cheesesteak! If you're not from Philadelphia, then you're from someplace near there like south Jersey, Baltimore, or Wilmington. if you've ever journeyed to some far off place where people don't know that Philly has an accent, someone may have thought you talked a little weird even though they didn't have a clue what accent it was they heard.

The Northeast
The Midland
The Inland North
The South
Boston
The West
North Central
What American accent do you have?



I found this to be so funny because I grew up in South Jersey, right out side of Philadelphia. Isn't it amazing how accurate these tests can be? Almost scary...

Friday, November 24, 2006

Holiday Shopping



Here it is, the day after Thanksgiving and I think I've got this holiday shopping thing worked out. My DH and daughter left a little while ago to spend the morning shopping...they left with their list of gifts we need. While they shop, I've been sitting at the computer, finding gifts to send to friends and family, far and wide.

I've already purchased all the toys for the little nephews and have gotten gifts for my parents and MIL. I've made table runners and a quilt for the girls in the office.

And of course, while I've been shopping, I did manage to find a little bit for myself. Today only (11/24) Carodan Farm is having a 25% off of everything sale. You have to spend a minimum of $35, but if you spend over $50 you get free shipping. Easier done than said! Looks like Santa will be bringing me some new sock yarn for Christmas.

And if you're interested, here are a few other places where I'm shopping for special gifts, tailored to the receiver.

Kitchen Kettle Village Located in Lancaster County, PA, they make the most amazing jellies, jams, salsas, apple butter...Delicious and reasonably priced!

Boudin Bakery - For real San Francisco sourdough bread, shop here! This is the best sourdough I've ever had. My DH sent me some when he was in San Francisco last month and it was incredible. I think I'm ordering the bread bowls with chili for myself!

Wine Country Gift Baskets Beautiful baskets filled with scrumptious things...my favorites are the Ghirardelli chocolate baskets. I've found the same baskets online at other places, but at Wine Country Gift Baskets they run $10 - $15 cheaper than on other sites. They also have spa baskets, food baskets, etc...and, of course, baskets with wine!

Hope this helps with your shopping too!

Friday, November 17, 2006

More finished...

The tablerunners are all bound and ready for gift giving! I'm so glad to cross another project off of my list. The first picture is of all 5 tablerunners. The second is of the quilting on one of them. I custom quilted 2 of them, then decided to get them done quickly and did swirls on the other 3. I almost like the swirly ones better! I just hope the girls who are receiving them like them.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Back to Quilting



No knitting today. I decided I should spend a little time catching up on my Women of the Bible Quilt blocks. This is last week's block, for the Mother of Moses. I love how this one turned out...it was fun to paper piece.

Terrible storm here tonight, we're hoping we don't blow away! Fortunately, they've dropped the tornado watch and the storm should be through in a few hours. It was so bad this afternoon they wouldn't let our children ride their bikes home from school. Almost all of the kids ride their bikes to school, so this is a big thing...those of us who drive little cars had to leave the bikes there overnight. Normally the police would pick up the bikes that were left, check to see who they were registered to and drop them off at the owner's house. But with so many bikes today, I'm thinking we won't get personalized service!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

One Warm Foot...


I did it...I made a sock! It was much easier than I thought it would be, although I did make a few mistakes here and there. Hopefully I can correct them in the next sock. I have the cuff folded down, because that's the way I like to wear them.

I found the pattern I used and an excellent tutorial at this site. It was amazing...very simple to follow. The yarn I used was Regia Sock Yarn in color 5047. Besides the sock, I've also bound 4 of the 5 tablerunners for Christmas and quilted a baby quilt.

Yesterday was my mom's birthday, so today I gave her the gift I made for her...Judy's first One Hour a Day quilt. She seemed very pleased with it...loved the colors and fabrics as well as the design and said she'll use it in her family room. So...thanks to Judy I have made my mother happy...and I have one warm foot! :o)

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Cathedral Windows - finished!

I have a few days off of school this week and I'm trying to take full advantage of them! Today was my first day off. I was up by 6:30 and by 7 was watching the election results and working on the last few blocks of my cathedral windows project. I finished the center and then did a few other things, including loading one of my quilts on the longarm...one which I believe is destined to go to Quilts of Valor.

This afternoon I came to my sewing room and started auditioning fabric for a narrow binding. It only took about 45 minutes to decide on this...not that you can really see it! :o) The binding is now complete and I'm so happy to say this project is finished. I enjoyed making the blocks, but just can't imagine doing an entire cathedral windows quilt by hand! This will go on the little table in my foyer. My goal was to have it done by Christmas so I could use it after the holidays...guess that won't be a problem!

I have to thank Judy for her sock pictures. I haven't knitted in about 20 years, but now I NEED to make socks. Don't want to, but need to! I went to Michael's and AC Moore looking for sock yarn, but since I had no clue what I was looking for I came away empty handed. So I went to the Carodan Farm website which Judy recommended and managed to buy a few skeins of yarn and needles to start with. I wish they'd get here! Of course, as soon as I was done ordering I realized I could have gone about a mile from my house to the little yarn store and had some instant gratification! Oh well, I wouldn't have gotten anything else done if I had done that!

Now on to my next project...this week I quilted the tablerunners that I made in September, so binding them tomorrow's work...

Tonight I'm off to guild...haven't been there in several months!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Quilting Meme

Thought I'd give this one a try...

Have You Ever?

1. Taken a quilting class
2. Paper pieced
3. Hand quilted
4. Hand pieced
5. Created your own pattern
6. Published a pattern in a magazine or book
7. Gone on a quilting retreat
8. Gone to a quilting convention
9. Met someone who wrote a quilting book - Ami Simms
10 combined your quilting with some other craft
11. Done any three dimensional quilting - like fabric origami
12. Made something using Thimbleberries fabric
13. Made something using batiks
14. Dyed your own fabric
15. Made a landscape hanging
16 Made a New York Beauty quilt
17 Made a baby quilt
18 Made a wall hanging
19 Made a journal quilt
20 Submitted your journal quilt for viewing
21 Made a fabric postcard
22 Made a artistic trading card (ATC)
23 Exchanged artistic trading cards
24. Mailed your own postcard
25. Made a lap quilt
26 Made a twin size quilt
27 Made a full size quilt
28 Made a queen size quilt
29 Made a king size quilt
30 Donated a quilt to charity
31 Sent a quilt out to a quilter - I AM the quilter! :o)
32 Thrown away a UFO
33 Given away a UFO
34 Cut up a UFO and made something else with it
35 Ripped fabric instead of cutting it
36 Made a quilt exactly like the pattern, with no changes whatsoever
37 Done any Sashiko
38 Quilted your own quilt
39 Did free motion quilting
40 Put any embroidery or beads on your quilt
41 Given away your quilt to a stranger
42 Swapped fabric
43 swapped blocks
44 participated in a round robin
45 participated in an ostritch round robin
46 kept a journal about your quilting
47 written a letter to someone who made an antique quilt
49 kept a blog about your quilting
50 participated in a gift exchange
51 sent a quilting random act of kindness
52 joined a newsgroup about quilting
53 made a quilt using a pattern from quilterscache
54 joined an online block of the month
55 made a block of the month quilt
56 subscribed to a fabric of the month club
57 bought fabric at an online store
58 bought fabric from ebay
59 own more than one sewing machine
60 have a room dedicated solely to sewing - I have 2 rooms!
61 hide a fabric purchase
62 finished making a holiday gift before July
63 spent more than $200 in one quilt shopping trip
64 made a quilt using a book from the library
65 worked with someone else to make a quilt
66. joined a quilt guild
67 become president of a quilt guild
68 taught a quilting class
69 helped someone else get the quilting bug
70 taught a child to sew
71 made a Dear Jane block
72 Made a miniature quilt
73 watch QNN - quilters news network
73 subscribe to a quilting magazine from your own country
74 subscribe to a quilting magazine from another country
75 buy fabric from another country
76 swapped completed quilts with someone else
77 asked for quilting help online
78 gone to a quilt shop to ask for quilting help
79 bought fabric at a local quilt shop
80 traveled more than 100 miles to go to a quilt shop
81 used nontraditional fabric for a quilt - something other than cotton or flannel
82 made a quilt using instructions given to you on a blog
83 make comments on someone's quilting blog
84 meet a quilter in person after only having talked online - met my best friends that way!
85 had a quilting retreat in your home
86 own quilting software
87 made a quilt you designed on your quilting software
88 done any quilt research - history, interviewing quilters, etc.
89 had any quilt related subject published anywhere
90 donated a quilt to a museum
91 bought a quilt from a thrift store
92 made a quilt using fabric from a thrift store
93 made a quilt using photos
94 made a pastel quilt
95 made a quilt using brights
96 made a quilt using ethnic fabric from another country - African, Asian, etc.
97 made a quilt using leftover blocks from other quilts
98 had your quilt in a magazine, newspaper, newsletter, TV, etc. - one that I quilted
99. submitted your quilt to a quilt show
100. won any ribbons with your quilts
101 had more finished quilts than UFOs
102 made a quilt using reproduction fabrics
103 took a break from quilting that was longer than a year
104 made money with your quilting
105 had a job in the fabric / quilting industry

Two More Blocks Finished

These are the next two blocks for the "Women of the Bible Quilt" that I'm working on through Yahoo. I'm enjoying these so much. They use a variety of different techniques and it's fun to practice some of my long rusty skills! I especially love this applique block. The melons don't quite meet up the way they should and the points aren't terribly pointy, but it was challenging and fun to do!

My husband is off to California until Friday, and I have several days off this week, so I intend to put them to good use! Hopefully I'll have a few finishes to show by the end of the week. Right now I'm working on more Care Bags. I cut out and sewed up the sides of 8 more last night, bringing my total to 15. Once I have sewn the casings and put the drawstrings through, I'll pack them up and send them off.
I'd been planning on doing the Hour A Day quilt, but when looking at the yardages required, I realized that I don't have enough yardage of anything to make the quilt. I don't want to go shopping for more fabric, so I'll print out the directions and plan to do it at a later date. I've enjoyed seeing everyone's progress so far and can't wait to see the results!

I hope everyone enjoys the weekend...cool temps and clear skies here in NJ today, my favorite kind of weather!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Giving Thanks!

Today was the follow up appointment for my daughter's biopsy and it came back normal...what a weight lifted off of our shoulders! Thank you for all of your prayers, now she can go back to being a normal 16 year old again!

To make the day even better, while we were at the doctor's, I got a text from my son, asking what was for dinner because he wanted to come home from college to eat. Of course I hadn't planned on cooking, but when I realized the entire family would be home tonight if we ate a little late, I made one of our favorites...roast beef with mashed potatoes and gravy, fresh green beans and bread. He was here when I got home from running errands and we all had a great time at dinner, catching up, laughing...it was such fun having him here. He's heading back to school now to go to the movies with his friends.

And now I'm heading to my favorite spot...on the comfy couch by the fireplace. I have my project basket, my applique, a mug of something warm and a puppy by my feet. Thank you again for your prayers and good wishes...I have so much to be thankful for!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween!

Although it's not my favorite holiday, I do enjoy seeing the kids dressed up and our Kindergarten class today had quite a few cute costumes! My favorite had to be the little boy dressed in a hammerhead shark costume. His mom had made it and the headpiece was just amazing! It was a fun day in Kindergarten. :o)

Tonight will be a great night for trick or treating...it's clear with a light breeze and it's about 70 degrees outside. Very unusual for this time of year! I don't have to follow the trick or treaters any more...as my 12 year old told me, "Mom, if you take me out trick or treating, I will have NO friends!" So, I can stay home and watch the parade of pirates, monsters and goblins.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Halloween!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Care Bags




A few weeks ago I posted that one of my goals was to make some Care Bags for
kids to go to the organization of the same name. I finally accomplished that this week. The four larger bags have different Hawaiian fabrics on each side. The three smaller ones have the same green Hawaiian fabric on both sides. I received these fabrics in secret pal swaps on AOL years ago and could never decide what to do with them. I finally decided. :o)

Since I've moved into my new sewing room, my cat has decided to spend lots of time with me. Maybe because I put my table in front of a sunny window? So, here is Cheyenne, coming to help me with the care bags. I received her as a gift for my 40th birthday and she is a sweetheart. She's 5 now (yeah, you can do the math!) and I just love her. We have two other cats who share their house with us, Misty, who is 9 and Calvin who is 3. Along with Sam, the dog and Stevie the bunny. They own us!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Pattern Busting

Over the past few months I've been playing around with eBay, trying to see if I can sell a few things that we no longer need. I've managed to sell a few items, including a karate chest protector, a set of exercise bands and most recently, 3 pairs of size 0, almost new pants!

As I was listing a couple of doorknobs we had laying around, I was thinking about stashbusting. I don't feel that I'm ready to make a committment to the one year no buying group...I don't think my stash is big enough to need that. AND I would miss getting my monthly Sweet Treats too much! So I've decided to do a little pattern busting! I know that I will never get around to making quilts from these patterns. All were gifts from secret pals of old and as much as I like them, I have so many other projects in my little head that I won't get to these. So, I've listed each of them on eBay and will see if they sell. If not, I guess that means I'm MEANT to make them...someday!

Now, if I could bring myself to get rid of some of my magazines, I'd be in good shape and would make some quilters very happy. But I'm not ready for that yet....little steps!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Thank You


Thank you so much for all of your prayers and good thoughts for my daughter. The biopsy yesterday went well. She is in a little discomfort, which the pain medication is helping with and she will be out of school for a few days. Now we wait...the results won't be back until sometime next week. The surgeon did say that he didn't see anything that indicated a problem, but we still need to see what the results say.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Lazy Sunday

Yesterday was another beautiful Saturday, just perfect for Homecoming at Rowan University in Glassboro, NJ. Years ago when I attended school here, it was a 'school of last resort'. Few actually chose to go to then Glassboro State College, unless, like me, you wanted to go to an excellent teacher's college. Since I planned to be a teacher, I lived at home and went there...and loved my time there. My only regret is that I couldn't live on campus and have the full experience of "college life". Fast forward 23 years to now and Glassboro State College is now Rowan University. It is now a "first choice school", especially if you plan to major in engineering. My son applied to 2 schools when it was time...Clemson and Rowan. Accepted at both for business (now he's a PR major), he decided that Rowan was the school for him...it was closer to home, less expensive and gave him the old time college campus feel that he was looking for. He loves it there too. We drove down for the Homecoming Parade yesterday and had a wonderful time with him. His fraternity (TKE) built a float, so after a parent's reception in the new Education building, we watched the parade from our son's porch. The picture above is of Bunce Hall, the first building built at the school. Ironically, it was built facing with its back to the main street...they thought they would build the rest of the campus so Bunce looked out over it. But when land became available it was behind this building...so it looks at a college green and nothing else. I loved sitting on the steps of this building on fall days, talking with friends...

Since many of you have expressed a continued interest in my "Women of the Bible Quilt", here is this past week's block. It was for Rachel and I paper pieced it. This week is Leah and it is applique. Thank you for all of your kind words...these blocks are more of a challenge for me than I thought they'd be! You're all helping to keep me motivated.

If you are so inclined, please say a prayer for my 16 year old daughter. She's having a biopsy done tomorrow of one of her inguinal lymph nodes. The doctor doesn't feel it's serious, but wants to give us peace of mind over it. Thank you.

Oh...I've been trying to leave comments on blogs, but blogger won't let me...so please don't think I'm ignoring you if you haven't heard from me! :o) And thanks for the tomato suggestions. I left them in a bowl on my counter and they're ripening faster than I can eat them!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Green Tomatoes

It was a beautiful fall day here in Southern New Jersey. Temperatures in the 60's, a clear, blue sky and a gentle breeze blowing...perfect to spend some time in the yard. I put the garden to bed for the winter. The smell of basil was delicious as I pulled out the plants...I hated to see them go! I picked the last few peppers and we're having them and some tomatoes in a pasta salad I made to go with dinner. But...since I planted the garden very late this year (the neighbors did some landscaping and as a result my garden flooded and had to be replanted) I've wound up with a lot of green tomatoes. Since I don't like them fried, what else can I do with them? If I leave them on the counter, will they ripen? Should I put them in newspaper inside a box to help them ripen? (I found that online.) I know that so many of you have gardens, farms, etc., I thought you'd be able to help me.

Here are a few other pictures from today...the view from my front porch and one of my husband's little bird houses.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

More blocks...

Here are the two latest blocks for my Women of the Bible Quilt. The first block is for Lot's Wife. I didn't like the block that was assigned for her, so I chose a different one. I thought a Contrary Wife block would be appropriate...if she wasn't so contrary, she wouldn't have been turned into a pillar of salt! I took the easy way out and paper pieced this block.







The second block is for Rebekah. I just loved making this block...I made templates, marked my quarter inch and hand pieced it while watching the coverage of the plane crash in NYC yesterday. As a Phillies fan and a Yankees fan (I lived in NY for almost 9 years, I was so sad to see that Cory Lidle was on the plane.

It's a beautiful day here...and the temps are dropping into the 30s tonight. I'm not ready for Finn's snow yet, but I love the cooler temperatures...Fall is my favorite season. You'd think I'd have an autumn leaves quilt, wouldn't you? That may have to be one of my next projects, once all my quilts are quilted. Another "maybe someday" project... I'll bet no one else has projects like those! :o)

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Sunday Afternoon

This is my latest Women of the Bible quilt block. It is for Hagar and I did it with reverse and needleturn applique. It was a challenge trying to get those little points pointy...unfortunately, I wasn't too successful. But, it was fun to do applique again, I haven't done it in ages. My next block, for Lot's Wife, is paper pieced, so I hope to have that done tonight.

Not much to blog about here. It was a busy week, it seems like the time flies and I don't get on the computer as much as I'd like! I quilted two customer quilts this week, so next on the machine will be Judy's last one hour a day quilt. I'm not joining in right now with the new one, although I'd love to...I've always wanted to do an autumn leaf quilt. Maybe I can jump in later...I'm going to print out the instructions for the leaf blocks. I love the variety of fabrics everyone is using....these colors are just my favorites. I like Jeanne's too, I never would have thought to make the leaves green! (Sad, isn't it?? LOL) I tend to look at patterns and think, "Yes, it's great in those colors," and then make a quilt that is somewhat similar. I don't think outside the box often, unless the colors of a quilt are WAY outside my comfort zone. Then I just use the colors I love and make the quilt that I'm comfortable with.

My goals for this week are to quilt one of my quilts, and make a few CareBags. I have some Hawaiian prints that would be great for these bags and I bought some drawstring last week so I can make them. I'll post photos when I finish. Other than that, I have a run of doctor appointments this week...this is the week my daughter returns to the surgeon and he decides if they need to do a biopsy on her lymph node. Since the swelling hasn't gone down, I'm thinking he'll want to do one.

Thanks to Cher, who has offered to share her 49ers fabric with me...isn't she sweet? I'm so very excited!

Monday, October 02, 2006

I've moved!

Across the hall, that is! My youngest daughter went away for the weekend. I went into her room to put some books on her desk, and my goodness, was it a mess in there! I came to the conclusion that she had too much space. so she just threw everything around. I called my DH in Chicago and asked him what he thought about switching my sewing room with her bedroom. He said to go for it, so I spent the weekend moving!

Her room turned out great, and she loves it...especially since I left my little TV in there for her. When she came home and saw the room, she confided to me that she really didn't like having such a big room, it was too hard to keep clean. Well, I certainly saw that! :o)

So now I have a larger space to spread out in. It's far from being finished, but here's a sneak peek. The walls are a dark, sage green and I'll eventually sand the trim and paint it a cream color. The carpet will go at some point too.


Front corner of room, design wall will go on the blank area of the wall.

My new closets, the left end has a built in book shelf, the right end has 3' x 3' shelves built in, which is where I'll store my boxes of strips.

Looking from the windows to my sewing table. I was able to put 2 tables in an L shape and now have a nice space for my laptop.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Productive Weekend

The weekend is coming to a close and I have gotten quite a bit done! The tablerunner at the left is one of 4 that I made (a fifth was already done) to give as Christmas gifts. These are from the remnants of my UFO that I abandoned. Now they just need to be quilted. The second picture is of my first two blocks in the "Women of the Bible" quilt that I'm making along with the Bible study on Yahoo. I paper pieced both of these blocks...I'd forgotten how accurate paper piecing is, I hadn't done it in years! The Bible study goes for 54 weeks, I believe and we will be doing a block a week. My goal is to stay caught up with the study. These two were fun to make.

The only thing left on my list for now is to put borders on the other part of my old UFO to use as a table topper, then I will be spending lots of time at the longarm. I don't want to start a new project until I've quilted a number of my old tops. Since the tops are done, I don't count them as UFO's...they are works in progress, just waiting to be quilted. Is that cheating? I'm hoping they won't be waiting too much longer. I'm not planning on doing any piecing except for keeping up with the Bible quilt blocks until I've quilted and bound a few of these quilts. That's my story and I'm sticking to it! :o)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Pin Cushions

I found the pincushions that you all have to be very interesting! I have a pincushion that I made of wool...somewhere. When I was a little girl, my mother did a lot of sewing. She always had a metal Sucrets tin, filled with her pins.

When I grew up, I had pins in the little plastic boxes that they came in. I searched high and low for a tin of Sucrets (because, of course, that's where pins were supposed to be!), but couldn't find one. Then we moved to Long Island, NY in 1990. I went into Rockbottom (a chain of large pharmacies that were popular then, like Drug Emporium) and there it was...my tin. I didn't even want the Sucrets, I just bought it for the tin! So, that is where my pins have lived, quite happily, ever since.

I want to thank you for all of the kind words and prayers that you have sent me. They are all appreciated, especially the prayers. The health situation for my daughter will be resolved in 4-6 weeks and then we'll know what she's facing. I know it my heart it's not serious, but we have to wait to find out.

You're the best!

Friday, September 15, 2006

A long week...

that has had NO time for sewing. I did work on a customer quilt, but that doesn't count, after all, that's work!

We've had a lot of issues to deal with this week, doctor's appointments to go to, serious concerns after those appointments...just too much in one week!

So, my sewing room is partially together and totally messy. I hope to get into the room over the weekend, I can use the therapy! DH is going to the Eagles game, so maybe I'll sneak in there on Sunday afternoon. :o)

Knowing that it had been a long week, and I really needed a little cheering up, there was a knock at the door this afternoon and these beautiful yellow roses from my husband arrived in the hands of a kind older man. Then he said, "Wait, I have a few more in the truck!" Not only were there roses for me, but baskets of flowers for each of our girls. (Yes, it was rough all around here!)

So now we've all stopped to take time to smell the roses...

On another note, my bloglines seems to have stopped working. All of the blog names have little red exclamation points after them and no new posting are showing up. I tried resubscribing to some of the blogs, but got the same thing. Is there a way to fix this, or am I doomed to going through the ring and reading the blogs that way? Being totally lost in blogland, I haven't an idea of how to fix it. Heck, I haven't even figured out how to add lists to my sidebar! Thanks for any help you can offer...

Friday, September 08, 2006

UFO Salvage

In my last post I mentioned that I had one true UFO. Here it is! I started this "Wedding Rings" quilt by Seams and Dreams, several years ago. I loved the one set of rings, but really didn't like the results when 4 of these rings of rings were set together. I set it aside...I'm sure you know how that goes!

I pulled it out the other day and decided to add a plain row of neutral squares to give it a border. Then I will add a border of Christmas Fabric and use it as a table topper. I looked at all the extra squares and half square triangles that I had made, and decided to make friendship star table runners for several women my husband works with. I went online and found this fabric for borders for the table topper and runners and it arrived yesterday. Hopefully soon I will have all of these done for Christmas!

My sewing time has been cut down...we started school on Wednesday. My assignment this year is as an assistant in a morning Kindergarten class. It's much different than the 5th and 7th grade classes I was in last year! I'm really enjoying the little ones, and I'm very grateful to come home to my older children! :o)