Sunday, March 30, 2008

Sunday Stashbusting Report...

It was a slow week for quilting, in spite of the fact I was on Spring Break. I did knit dishcloth, quilt a customer quilt and I'm sure there were other things...the week went too quickly.

Today I cut fabric for a twin size Lucky Star quilt from Atkinson Designs. (The picture came from their website.) This will be a high school graduation gift my daughter's friend. All the fabric came from stash and is primarily batiks and hand dyes, with a few other oldies thrown in. They are mostly bright colors...lots of reds, oranges, blues, yellows and greens. So, that is 30 fat quarters out of my stash today, as well as 3 yards of white background fabrics for total of 10.5 yards of fabric.

When you cut the fat quarters for this quilt, there is a strip and some other good size pieces left over. I'm thinking that since I'm closing in on my 300th post, it might be time for a giveaway. What do you think? This is post 292, so I've got a little time to gather things up, but I'm quite sure the leftovers from this quilt will be included. I can think of a paper pieced pattern that may be in there too, and maybe a treat from Reily's Candy here in town.

Stay tuned and I'll see what I can come up with!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Dear Jane blocks

I've spent some time catching up on my Dear Jane blocks today. Here is A-6...

And A-7...

And B-3...

It was a dismal day here, perfect for hiding in the sewing room. Yesterday I got out and did some yard work, my flower beds are raked and ready for some planting. I'm not sure what or if I'll be planting much, the deer eat everything I plant. Any suggestions for some deer safe plants or shrubs? Something with large thorns, perhaps? I do plan to move my English roses out front, it's sunny and the deer leave them alone. Beyond that, I'm thinking I'll have some lovely beds that are just mulched, with nothing in them!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Meet My Sister...

For the past few years, my sister JoAnne has had Easter dinner. The first year she hosted, we all arrived, absolutely starving, and waited for our dinner to be ready. There was salad, spaghetti, ravioli, homemade sauce, meatballs, sausage...everything you could want in an Italian feast.

JoAnne had a new stove with a glass cooktop. She put the water on to boil and we waited. And waited. And waited some more. After an hour or so, we determined the water would never boil, so we threw the pasta in anyway, it eventually cooked and we ate dinner. About 2 hours late. We had some cranky little kids and some crankier adults eating dinner that night!

Of course, in typical sibling fashion, my brother and I have never let her forget it. For Christmas that year, I bought her an Italian cookbook with specific directions on how to boil water. We've been harassing her ever since, yet she still volunteers to cook dinner for us every Easter. I got a call a week before Easter letting me know that the water was on to boil and to make sure I was at her house for dinner at 5 on Easter Sunday. This year she did it...the water was boiling and the ravioli were cooked by 5! Good job, Jo!

Of course, it turns out that the reason the water wouldn't boil was because the pot needed to be flat on the bottom and hers wasn't. Who knew? She now has a new flat pot and can boil water with the best of them.

And dinner was delicious...

Friday, March 21, 2008

Happy Easter, Happy Spring...

This promises to be a hectic weekend. My daughter was flying to Chicago this morning, until we got word that her flight was's snowing in Chicago. So much for Spring! She's booked on a flight tomorrow morning at 7:30, so we'll be up early and headed to the 5am. We'll pick up a truck on the way home and spend the day moving our son into his new place.

Up early again for 7:45 service on Easter morning, then breakfast and hopefully I'll be able to give blood. I tried yesterday, but my iron was a trifle had to be 12.5 and mine was 12.3. Hopefully with a few days of iron supplements and lots of spinach, I'll be able to donate on Easter. We'll be heading to my sister's for dinner in the afternoon.

I hope all of you have a happy, blessed Easter.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Another Monday...

Happy Birthday, Van!!!

The decision was made on Friday that I would turn over my sewing room to my son, so he would have lots of space for all of his things when he moves back home. By Saturday evening the change was made...all of my things were crammed into the little room, whatever didn't fit was hidden someplace else in the house and my new sewing room and his bedroom were set up. Did I mention I moved all the furniture, books, etc. myself? So here's the new room, complete with cat...

It was a lot of work, but having Andrew home is its own reward....On Sunday after church, the boss (who celebrated his birthday on Saturday) and I drove down to Wheaton Village for a quilt show. There were beautiful applique quilts (this one by Debbie from The Little Shop in Haddonfield, NJ)Some that were hand quilted and gorgeous...

And some that were just fun to look at (yes, this one is sideways!)

We enjoyed the day...came home and took care of some things around the house, helped Andrew sort through some of his stuff to be donated to Goodwill, had a quiet evening.

Then today came...along with the phone call. "Uh, mom? You're going to be mad at me...I found a place to live and I won't be coming home after all. Sorry you did all that work for nothing!"

On the bright side, he'll be taking his dog with him! And I guess I'll be moving back down the hall...I mean, why waste that nice big room by making it a guest room?!?

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

I'm still here

but haven't found time to write. What have I been doing? Well there's this...
These are Just Ribbing socks from Apple Laine, made in Schaeffer Heather, Gertrude Ederle colorway from Simply Socks Yarn Company. I wish the photos did the colors justice, they are just so rich and gorgeous. These have already been through the wash (yes, I put them in the washer and dryer!) and are just so soft, I almost wish winter wasn't almost over, they're so warm! I've also started a pair of toe up socks using the new SSYC club yarn that arrived last week. These are very springy and fun to knit! Pictures later...

I've also intended to make some Dear Jane blocks, but so far, all the blocks that Anina has chosen, I've already done. So, yeah, I did all the easy ones first, I admit it. Here is C-9...

This one is D - 3... And B-13, which isn't nearly as out of square as the picture would indicate!

My Pfaff is at the spa for a tune up and defuzzing, so I've had time to work on some applique. More on that when the block is's close!

Also found out today that my son may be moving back home for awhile, after living at college for the past 3 years. THAT will be interesting! His dog moved in with us today and will probably be here until Andrew has graduated and is on his own. I'm considering giving up my large sewing room (which used to be his room) so the boy has room for all his accumulated college stuff...have to think on that one a bit. And of course, it will all need to be done by next week. Guess I should go get some work done!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Dear Jane

I've started working on my Dear Jane quilt once again. I've started several times, finished a round robin sampler with my guild a number of years ago and when inspired by Anina of Twiddletails, to join her Baby Jane group, signed right up. You can find more information on the blog she started here.
The first block we're doing is B-13, Four Corner Press. Since I had already completed this block, I chose B-4, Chris's Soccer Field to do. I paper pieced it from a pattern I had printed from the Dear Jane software. The software makes it so easy! Here are both blocks...
See the little dots? They're the secret to my sanity with this quilt. When I finish a block, I take one of the little dots and write the number of the block on it. Since I keep them stacked in a plastic tote, it's easy to keep track of what number block it is. In addition, when I finish a block, I write it in a journal that I keep just for this quilt. I have 15 blocks completed so far and you can see their pictures here.

I'm so glad I've started up with this again, I love the fabrics I'm using (mostly Robyn Pandolph Folk Art Christmas, with some 3 Sisters for Moda thrown in). I'm using a variety of background fabrics, that way if I run out of one I can always add a different one and it won't matter. I also haven't paid much attention to color, but I'm planning to add photos of the pictures to my software so I can determine if I like the layout. I may need to move some of the blocks around.

Thanks for starting this, Anina!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Quick Project...

You gotta love a project that can be done quickly! Yesterday I decided I needed a bag to carry my shoes in when I walk to school. I chose my fabrics yesterday and made the entire bag this when I leave for work in an hour, my shoes will be in it. This is the third one of these Smart Bags from Quiltsmart that I've made and I love making them more each time. The best part is they each take 2 fat quarters, so that's a half yard gone from the stash!

Sunday, March 02, 2008


We thoroughly enjoyed our little vacation on Friday and Saturday. After dropping our daughter off at the Convention Center in Wildwood, NJ where she was attending the convention for the Episcopal Diocese of NJ (she was a page) we headed up to Atlantic City. It was a beautiful, cold, windy day...did I say cold? It was freezing on the boardwalk! We left a few dollars here....
and decided that we didn't need to come back to the casinos again. I haven't been to Atlantic City in years, but the last time I was there, if you won on the slot machines you got ACTUAL MONEY. That was the excitement of it, watching the machines spit out the quarters, pulling the handle, the cha-ching of the coins hitting the least it was for me. Now that the machines are electronic, the fun is gone. No little buckets to load your quarters in, no need to pull the handle on the machine...everything is done with the push of a button and I guess if I had actually won something, I probably would have gotten a little printout like I do when I put my change in the coin counter at the bank. What a disappointment.

After shopping unsuccessfully at the outlets (these are new too!) we headed into Philadelphia. We stopped for a quick lunch at Applebee's on the way. We checked into the hotel and had a beautiful view of the Ben Franklin bridge from our 10th floor window.

We visited the Art Museum and wandered around while listening to live Jazz Music. I shared my high school art knowledge with the boss as we viewed the paintings and he still took me out to dinner in spite of it!

We had a delicious dinner at the Chart House on the waterfront, and had a beautiful view of the Battleship New Jersey while we ate. Check out the battleship's website, it's done by FuriousBall, who is quite talented...not only does he design great websites, but he's an awesome guitar teacher! Yesterday morning we stopped at the 4th Street Deli for breakfast and had a view of Center City from our table...

Then we got back on the road and picked our daughter up back in Wildwood...we put a few miles on the car this weekend!

I did my best to participate in the Quiltathon today. I loaded this quilt for Project Linus this morning, quilted it, made the binding and hand sewed it down. I looked for another project to work on and realized that I don't have any piecing to do, except for my Dear Jane quilt, which I didn't feel like fussing with. I'll have to come up with a new project...time to go through the old magazines!
No stashbusting happened this week, all the fabric for this quilt (except for the four patches) came in last weekend and it's all gone now, so this week was a wash. Once I figure out what quilt to make next, I'll be hitting the stash again!