Tuesday, May 23, 2017

What Did I Buy?



During and after the retreat I went to two quilt shops. And shop, I did! I knew I wanted to buy more white neutrals -

This jellyroll fit the bill!


I fell in love with this panel-like Christmas fabric from Moda. I've been wanting to make a Christmas quilt. I love that these images do not have a true Christmas red - more of a rusty red. (You know I'm not a big fan of red.)


They also had all the coordinating fabrics for this panel, but I used my will power. They also had a cute pattern to go with it. Again, will power. I'll use my stash to do something fun.


I do love the color ORANGE! So I couldn't pass up this pretty fat quarter.


I added three half yard cuts of Kaffe Fassett to my stash.


I bought several yards of this Kaffe -one of my friends insisted I need it for a backing for my Marmalade quilt. She's right, it will be perfect!


You know I'm a big fan of Jen Kingwell. She's going to be teaching at this particular shop (Intown Quilters in Decatur, GA) this weekend and they had a great supply of her stuff. I picked up this pattern - and I have another one coming soon that is on backorder.


The store had also prepared these little packs of fabric for use in Jen Kingwell's classes - I bought one of them, also.

Lastly, I picked up some hand quilting needles and thread. What? Me? Yes! I'm planning on hand quilting a quilt. I know, crazy, right?


Yesterday I unpacked completely, did laundry, and went to the grocery store (in the rain - yuck!), but at least I had my Kaffe Fassett umbrella to keep me dry. Last night I even made meatloaf with baked sweet potatoes. I had more energy than I thought I would. Last night I finished the appliqué on the Block 2 of the Rowdy Flat Library Quilt! Photo tomorrow...

This afternoon we are meeting some movers to help us rearrange our storage unit. We'll be moving some things to Daughter 2's new home next month and it will help so much to get her stuff to the front. But I do hope to sew this morning!

Have a fun day, everyone!


Monday, May 22, 2017

I'm BACK!


This was my first time attending a retreat since moving to the Auburn area. Boy, did I have fun! I was so impressed with the accommodations. I shared a lovely room with a friend. The sewing area was big and we each had a HUGE table to use.

And the food...
The food was amazing! I'm talking homemade scones every morning, along with eggs, grits, bacon or sausage, fruit. It was all delicious. And I ate too much. And I'll get back on track today, I promise!

My primary project was my dresden plate blocks. I posted the photo above on Facebook. After that I finished appliquéing all the remaining blocks and half blocks. Done! I didn't sew the blocks together because I plan to quilt this one block at a time and then put it together.


Then I dug into my New Bedford quilt. Remember, I had cut out the entire quilt a few weeks ago. What I discovered was that this pattern is made almost entirely from flying geese blocks. So I made hundreds of flying geese blocks. It was a very relaxing process. I did manage to put together two blocks, one each of the two alternating blocks. I need to make five more of each block. But all the parts and pieces are made and ready to sew. Good progress made!

With all these flying geese made, I ended up with HUNDREDS of bonus triangles...I see a quilt made with the leftovers in my future!

Before I left yesterday morning I began working on my Marmalade quilt kit. I made five strip sets - forgot to take a picture though. I need to make nine more strips sets. Good progress made on this quilt, too.

I didn't do any hand work to speak of - I spent all my time behind my sewing machine. My friends and I talked and laughed the entire time. I had a wonderful time!

I think going on a quilting retreat is akin to going to Disneyworld for a vacation. You have a blast. You go-go-go. So much fun! And you come home exhausted! I slept late this morning...


When I got home my African Violet was blooming for the first time! I knew it was getting close before I left. I want to get more of these plants. They're one of the few houseplants I have luck with.

Today I have to unpack and put everything away. And do laundry. And buy groceries. I plan to redo my weekly schedule later this week to get myself on track again.

More posts about retreat coming...
Have a great day!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Packed!


My mission yesterday was simply packing. I have all my sewing supplies in the back hallway, ready to load in the car. I still need to pack my clothes but that won't take very long.

The retreat doesn't begin until tomorrow, but I'm heading out today. I'll be driving through Atlanta, on past the retreat location, all the way to Augusta to visit my mother. I'll spend the night with my brother tonight and then backtrack to the retreat tomorrow. Home again on Sunday. Today is my longest driving day. But I have a book on CD to listen to in the car. And I'm packing a lunch and water bottles.

I'll see you here on the flip side - probably Monday. Have a great rest of your week and a wonderful weekend!


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Bees! Tiny Bees! And Hexie Jewelry!


Let's start with the hexie jewelry. This catalog came in the mail yesterday - never heard of this company before, but I LOVED their jewelry!


They have a line of HIVE items - right up my alley!


Aren't these gorgeous? Especially for those of us who love HEXIES! www.mignonfaget.com


And now for the bees. Yesterday I cut out all the fabric pieces for the little bees. Last night I appliquéd 3 1/3 bees in place. I put a thimble in the photo so you can see how small they are.


As you can see, my little bees are not all the same.


I had fun using different fabrics for the wings and bodies. The pattern called for 18 little bees. I have 10 planned, though I can always add more if I change my mind.

Today is packing day. The clothes are easy to pack. The sewing stuff - ugh! I've been piling my precut projects in the guest bedroom for a couple of weeks so hopefully it won't be too bad.

I hope you have a wonderful day!


Monday, May 15, 2017

Hexies! Tiny Hexies!


I finished the flowers!


Flowers and flowers and flowers....


So now it's time for the hexies in the corner...the honeycomb. The pattern came with this little template for 3/8" hexies. I only need about 20 of these.



So I traced and cut! I have lots of sizes of hexie papers, but not 3/8". Glad I didn't need more...



I made them all in yellows/golds - no Kaffe fabric here. I stayed up late last night appliquéing these in place.



I will say that this little corner of this block took several HOURS! These tiny hexies are maddening, even for me - a hexie lover!

Now that the hive is in place, I can work on the tiny bees. 

I know it seems this quilt is the only one I'm working on at the moment. I feels like that to me, too! But this week is retreat and I have LOTS of machine projects packed and ready to go.  I'm not sure about the Internet connection at the retreat, so I'll probably be taking a blogging break for the duration. But not yet! I'll still be around for a few more days...















Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day!


Happy Mother's Day! And even if you are not a mother, I'll bet you have influenced a young person along the way - so Happy Mother's Day to you, too!

Yesterday I met Daughter 1 at an art show. She showed up with a Chai Tea Latte for both of us - we sipped as we strolled. There were hand dyed linens.


And I really liked these paintings.


Jewelry was hung on antique spools. We had a nice time! Neither of us bought anything, but we both came away inspired.


Daughter 1 gave me this cool new tool - it's a Tweezerman spring to use instead of tweezers - I was so excited when I saw this! You know every woman needs good tweezers and this is the newest thing. I had heard of it and can't wait to try it. (Don't we all have a bit of unwanted facial hair?!)


And Daughter 2 gave me this on Thursday - again, I squealed when I opened it because I had seen it on Pinterest. These are tiny embroidery hoops - I can cross stitch or embroider or punch needle the design of my choice and put these together to make tiny embroidery hoop necklaces. 

What great gifts!



Hubby bought Cooper a Gentle Leader to help with his pulling issues during walks. He's not too fond of it at the moment, but I'm sure he'll get used to it.

Now...
a bit more about how I'm feeling this Mother's Day. 

Daughter 2 has been married for several years and is in a great position where she works - a great career as a Software Engineer.

Daughter 1 has been married one year today (Happy Anniversary!) and is finishing her Pharmacy Residency. She has recently landed a great job as a Pharmacy Professor beginning in July. 

A friend once told me that you want two things for your adult children: 
1. Love 
2. Career

As of a couple of weeks ago, BOTH of our kids have achieved these milestones. My first thought was, "My work here is done!" I am, of course, thrilled! But then (I have to admit) I had a bit of sadness. "Oh no...my work here is done..." Both of our daughters have reassured me that my work here is NOT done - they will still need my advice and help and companionship. That makes me feel better! A mother's work is NEVER done! 

Are you wondering if my machine error issue fixed itself. NO! Ugh! I may have to finish quilting this quilt in a different way. And my machine may have to go to the shop... we'll see. 

So what am I doing today? Not much! Yesterday I make a broccoli salad and a black bean salad. We have Honey Baked Ham - so no cooking for me. I plan to relax and do some hand stitching. Ahhh....

Enjoy your day!







Saturday, May 13, 2017

Machine Quilting Sashing


I began working on the sashings of Autumn Garden. First I measured and marked dots (washable marker).


I used the dots as guides to do these curvy intersecting lines. It's not perfect, but it works fine for me. I did about half of the vertical sashing - and then suddenly I got an error message on my machine. UGH! Usually these error messages are easy to figure out. In fact they are extremely obvious in what they want me do. But this time I was baffled.



I was using my Stitch Regulator quilting foot. And I had been using it all morning without a problem. But the machine suddenly told me to take a certain foot - 1C-  (not the one I was using) off and put a certain other foot - 1D - (again, not the one I was using) on.

I turned the machine off and then back on. I took the foot off and put it back on. I rethreaded the top thread. I rethreaded the bobbin. I cleaned the machine. I oiled the machine. I even gave it a pep talk! And I still got the same error message.

At that point I threw in the towel. Enough machine quilting for the day! I'm determined to figure it out today. Any ideas? Anyone?


Last night I cut circular flower centers for RFLQ.



My templates? A quarter and a thimble - perfect sizes!

Cross your fingers that I'll be able to figure out my sewing machine dilemma today! Have a great one!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Lake Critters...


The lake trip was fun - no sewing to show. I did appliqué a flower or two on the RFLQ, but it doesn't look different from the previous picture. So today's show and tell is about lake critters.

On our boat ride we saw this amazing HUGE nest - that is a pair of bald eagles sitting up there! And we could hear their babies chirping.


In this picture the dad had flown off for more food. This was a first for us - we'd never seen an eagle nest at the lake. This is close to a marina.


And here's our critter named Mickey, as always insisting on sitting in a lap.


More critters: the goats on Goat Island were all resting.


And here was Cooper, loving EVERY SECOND of the boat ride.


On the way back to the house this mallard duck led us directly to our dock.



And now for the last critter of the day. Do you see that terra cotta bird house hanging from the tree? While we were at the lake the day before I noticed a little wren going in and out. I love to put my phone up to the hole in birdhouses and take a picture - you know - so I can see the eggs or baby birds. 

Everyone else was down on the pier playing with the Sea Doo. I took my picture - then screamed when I looked at the photo...




And here is the picture. Yes, it's a snake. Inside the little bird house. It can't be a big snake because the bird house is not very big. But alas, the eggs are gone. So sad. 

I'm not a snake lover, so I hope he clears out soon. 

Today is going to be a rainy day and I'm rather glad! I plan to do some machine quilting and a bit of laundry and catch up on some TV shows. 

Wishing you a very happy day!






Thursday, May 11, 2017

RFLQ - The Rowdy Quilt Block 2

 

I worked on the Rowdy Flat Library Quilt a bit yesterday. I have the corner flowers pinned in place and have begun to appliqué them. That empty corner? There will be hexies there - the hive for the bees. And there will be tiny bees buzzing all around later, also.

It's hard to tell here, but one flower in each corner is wool. I'm sticking to my plan of adding a bit of wool in each block. I didn't arrange my corner flowers as the pattern called for - I had to have mine evenly spaced and symmetrical - my OCD coming out to play. This quilt is so much fun!

We're going back to the lake later this morning to take the anniversary couple on a boat ride - yes, they invited us. We would never invite ourselves to an anniversary trip - haha! But I think I'll have time before we go to pull fabrics for another quilt project to take along to retreat next week. I want to take more than I think I'll need to sew - wouldn't want to run out of projects!

Are you wondering about my end of April weight loss? Me too! I haven't weighed in weeks! I think I'm about the same, maybe a pound or so down. I've gotten to the point that I'm not obsessing over the numbers any longer. And I think that's a very good thing!

Let's make it a great day!!!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Machine Quilting! And a Liberty Hexie Quilt...


It was a good day for machine quilting - I finished quilting all the blocks in Autumn Garden. Now I just have to quilt the sashings. I'm nearing another finish!


 Look what landed in my email this week. This beautiful quilt was made by Jean Manning in Australia using Liberty fabrics. Here's what she said:

It's a present for a friend who has no children and no animals‼️some of the Liberty fabrics are so small that I had to join some together to make the hexagon. The fabric was bought when I was working and "rich " as I really enjoy smocking as well as patchwork.

It's gorgeous, isn't it! Those Liberty fabrics shine!



And here's one of the smocked dresses she's made - quite the talent! Thanks for sharing, Jean!

Rodan and Fields

I haven't done a Rodan and Fields post in quite some time, so let's talk about it today. I have a Facebook friend who is looking for a bit of side income this summer and is looking for suggestions. I said that R+F would be good choice. Her reply, "Direct Sales is not my cup of tea." I decided not to reply on Facebook.

What I wanted to say was:
That's what I USED to think, too. But I opened up my mind to it because of the quality of the products and what they've done to improve my skin. I don't feel like a salesperson with R and F. The products sell themselves - how can you argue with being the NUMBER 1 skincare line in the country? All I have to do is post to Facebook every so often. And I carry samples in my purse for when people (sometimes strangers) comment about my nice skin. And yes, people do notice my skin now! No parties, no inventory, no worries.

And the even better news is that today is the last day to take advantage of a super duper special for new consultants - anyone who signs on today will receive 40 free mini facial samples to start their business - that's a $200 value! Wish I'd had that when I started...

Moving on...
So what's on tap today? We're making a quick trip to the lake to set things up for Daughter 2 and SIL2's anniversary trip there. Can you believe it's been almost a year since the wedding? I can't! I'll take along my Rowdy Flat Library Quilt and so some appliqué in the car.

Wishing you a happy day!