Monday, November 28, 2011

My thoughts over the last week

I'll post photo's tomorrow. In the meantime, I've been thinking of what to say on my blog. Were to begin and what to post.

I have been working on my Rose wall hanging and will post the photos and what I've done tomorrow. I did take pictures, so I just need to take the time and post them.

The last week I have been thinking of different things going on in my life. Last Tuesday I received word my Uncle past away on Sunday. I was told by Wednesday when and where the funeral services would be. Funeral Services were Saturday and today was the grave site. I went to the funeral on Saturday, but did not attend services today at the grave site. One reason because it was 2 hours away and the other was he would have a military service with Taps. Taps is one of those things I can't help but cry for. I know my day is coming when my father goes. I'm not looking forward to that day. Life is strange at times. My Uncle (God rest his sole) had a stroke 14 years ago. He has been in a home the last 16 or 18 months. I haven't seen him in 5 years. That was my fault, but at the same time, I remember him telling me when I was growing up, he wanted to be remembered as the person he was, not as a broken man. I wanted to remember him as the person he was and not the person that was limited because of his stroke.

While my mind was on my Uncle, my mind was also on my son coming to visit around Christmas. I was thinking of having him help me in designing a quilt for him. He's such a good artist, and I believe he knows better than I do what he wants in/on a quilt. I also thought of my Hawaiian quilt that I'm quilting. I designed that one and wondered if I sold the pattern how many would really want the pattern. Would it be worth it?

Designing quilts has been on my mind lately. I have found quilt tops I really want to make a quilt out of, but the disappointing part of it is the quilt isn't big enough for a bed. Quilts have become square in size and how can you put a square quilt on a bed that isn't square?! I bought a couple applique pattern in NC (finding out they were designed in CA), and noticed they also were square. I figured out I could make three more blocks for the quilt to make it longer and just as pretty as it is now. Those of course will be quilts I will make AFTER I get a few UFO (Unfinished Objects) done. I'm making progress though. Back to my designing - I woke up the other morning at 2 am and couldn't go back to sleep, so I went downstairs and tried to design a center block I was thinking about. Of course, the idea was there, but the design was not. I need to take more art classes again! (laughing)  I will try and sit down and work on a few designs to see where I go from there. My mother and I designed a beautiful quilt for SWWRDQG that was raffled off a few years back. It was all done in applique.

UFO - someone asked me what a quilter meant by a UFO. We call them Unfinished Objects, which is quilt project that have been started but not finished. They are not quilt project we plan on making, they are project already in the making. So, when I say I have UFO's I have several quilt tops I started and didn't finish, blocks that are done but not put in a top. Tops that are done but not quilted. And the list goes on, but NOT what I want to make, it's what I stared. (FYI)

Christmas is coming upon us and I'm still trying to get a few things done. Not getting very far. Both our TAS groups are having a party with potluck and "white elephant" gift exchange. I found a really pretty pattern on eBay that I think will be fun to have with some fabric or something with it. Not sure which group I will have that one for. Trying to think of ideas for the gifts, so may start checking the internet for a few things on sale. The more I can get the more fun it will be.

I went downstairs on Sunday and got some quilting done on the Butterfly quilt. It is slowly coming along as well. If I'm lucky I can get that and the Hawaiian quilt done so I can have it in the quilt show in February with mom's quilts. I'm hoping I can do that. May have to stay off playing games for a while to get it done though! And anyone that knows me and games, know that may be hard for me to do. (still laughing)

So, as I said, I will try and get photo's posted tomorrow on the Rose quilt I'm working on. It's looking really pretty and the effect I was hoping for is coming to light. I'm down to the big rose on the bottom. I may have it done by Thursday yet!! It was hard not to tell my walking partner that I am trying to get it done for Christmas, since it is going to her. I really need to bite my tongue at times, since I'm always telling her where I am on what I'm working on.

Till tomorrow.....have a great day!

Monday, November 21, 2011

I have come to the conclusion that Charlie is spoiled

This past weekend was interesting. I was able to get a few things done, and play some games.

At the age of 16 or older, Charlie does keep me on my toes. She's there waiting for me when I get up in the morning and follows me around. When I finally decide to sit down, she's there. Like yesterday when I got on the computer. She was there. She sat on my arm (mouse arm) and stared at me. I'd move her over and she would then sit on the keyboard. No matter where I moved her, she made sure her face was in my view and bat her big eyes at me. So, I petted her and gave her TLC. That took a good 15 mins. Then she decided to sit in the chair next to me (that I moved over for her). If I thought my husband's snoring was bad, this cat can snore!

Yesterday was "game day" for the football teams. Husband is from Green Bay, so guess who his team is. I'm from WA state and guess who my team is (head hanging). So, we heated up the downstairs with the fireplace and headed down there. There we watch the football games while I quilt. My team was embarrassing to watch but the team they played was even more so. Took Charlie along for the ride, so to speak. Put her on one end of my quilt frame so I could quilt on the other end.

I have a sheet at one end to put her on. Not that it matters, because she comes right in my face purring like crazy. So, I moved her over to the spot on the sheet, no dice. I moved her back and she sat looking at me like I just killed her best friend. So, TLC, again.

Now this is where I'm throwing in a "note" to all quilters. But first I want to say I appreciate the work that was put into this quilt top! The SWWRDQG made this top for me as an outgoing president. Here is where the "note" goes - please, please, when giving a quilt away as a gift, please don't use dark thread to sew light color fabrics. Not even if the background is dark. One of the butterflies that was pieced has dark lines coming out of the seams. It doesn't help the look of the butterfly, your eyes go to the stitches. The yellow in the center was done is dark thread as well. That makes the pretty flower look dirty. As I said, I so appreciate the work that was put into this quilt and am thrilled to have it. The dark likes made a beautiful quilt top look pretty, if that makes sense. If you have a quilt that goes from dark to light, use something like a tan color that will blend in with both the dark and light. You can go on the dark side of tan without the affect that a black or dark blue line has.

Okay, back to my story of Charlie. Last night when we moved back upstairs, Charlie sat on the quilt that is on the couch. Till I sat down in my chair. She got up, came over to me and wanted to sit on my lap. Since I was trying to applique, my husband told me to make her sit at my feet (with the foot rest up). I pushed her down. That didn't work, she came back to my lap. I pushed her down again, no luck. The third time my husband got up and picked her up to put her at my feet. Wow! You'd think dad spanked the child! She got mad and got down. Sat there staring at both of us. I called her back and told her to sit there, and she did. When I got up, I accidently push the foot rest down and she fell on the floor. She headed for the back door at that point, like she was ticked. I gave her water and she came back. When it was time to leave, which you will do automatically when I say "time for bed," she didn't move. Got the mad attitude from her, but she finally did leave. My husband looked at me, said, "Your the one who spoils her, I hope you know."  Yep, I guess I do, but she's so much fun! When it comes down to it, you'd think she was a teenager! Attitude all around.

My quilting over the weekend was - worked on the Rose pattern, quilted on the butterfly quilt (photo). Quilting I put in a good 3 hours. I'm happy with that. Have a great day!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

It's Been Awhile

It's been awhile since I posted here. I was trying to think of what I've done that is worth I said, boring....

Okay, here I go. Thursday (at our TAS Haven't Missed A Stitch group) last week I started marking the Rose Arbor pattern from Pacific Rim Quilt Company, designed by Nancy Lee Chong. It's a 24"x36" wall hanging that I'm making for a friend. I'm hoping to have it appliqued by the first of December. Nancy has some really cool quilt patterns that don't take long and are fun to do. Mine is done with a variegated fabric. I choice that fabric because it goes from one color to the next from salvage to salvage. I feel in love with the possibilities this fabric has.

I basted this quilt on Friday at the TAS Myron's Girls group. That night I started the applique.

Before the TAS Haven't Missed a Stitch group today, I had this much done, along with one bud in the corner. I could have gotten more done, if Charlie wasn't around. (As you can see) is where you will see the actual pattern (permission to use this from Nancy Lee Chong, owner)

I am planning to take a few more pictures tomorrow that will show the progress. As you can see from the above photo's - the colors go from a light green to yellow to pink to red to purple. In deciding on this fabric I liked the way the flowers change shades and how it shows a rose coming from a light bud to a full purple color. I think it will be very striking when I'm done. The background is a white on white with a rose pattern to it. As you can see the variegated fabric also has a flower pattern.

The more I post the more you will tell I'm a very bright colored person. I do not care for dull colors. quilts that have a "pop" to the work is what I look for. One of these days I would like to do a "fall" color quilt. It is out of my comfort zone, but I will be a challenge on color. I have been thinking about colors I would use  and found that the best place to look is in nature. So, the other day, I fell in love with the colors in the maple tree outside our back door and took a picture.

In the meantime, my two quilts that I'm quilting are on hold. I would like to have both of them done by February for the quilt show. My mother wants to be able to add my quilts for the "mother, daughter" hangings they are planning on. I will ask both friends that will be getting a wall hanging, if I can borrow the wall hangings for the show.

If you love to applique and want something quick and easy to do, try out Nancy's 2 Fabric Applique Quilts because they are a lot of fun. This is the third one I have done since June. The first one I did was her Butterfly pattern.

This is hanging in my entryway. I love the colors, and it works in the hallway. Plus I like Butterflies and have collected them over the years.

Today was fun at the TAS Haven't Missed A Stitch group. We talked about having a Christmas party and gift exchange. Since meeting on the 22nd of December, so it will be like having our own little Christmas that day.Quilters love to eat as much as they do quilt, so we are having a potluck. Should be exciting. I have found TAS to be very helpful and fun! I find I'm interested in finishing things, as well as wanting to see what everyone else is doing. There is just something about being with a group that has the same interests as you do, doing the same things you do. It's encouraging and fun at the same time.

So, lets see if I can make my goal of getting this Rose Arbor wall hanging done by the first. I'll try and take pictures as I go, so you get the idea of what all it takes to make this quilt top. Till then.....

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Started Another Project

Okay, here I go again. I'm starting another project. As if I don't have enough going on now, I decided to start a 2 Fabric Applique (by Nancy Chong), for a Christmas gift. HOPEFULLY, it won't take long. Usually the applique takes me about 2 weeks. Quilting even less. So, if I stick with it I can have it done by Christmas. We'll see.....

So, Thursday I started the marking of the work. Friday I was able to get a parcel leaf done, and yesterday I got even more done on it. I have 2 1/2 leaves appliqued down. I cut and applique as I go. Makes it easier then trying to figure out where I am. Yesterday I took it with me to the bowling alley and appliqued while my husband was in a tournament. He did pretty good I might say - bowled a 144, 212, 202. If it wasn't for the first game he probably would have won something. Back on track - after the bowling alley we went up to Olympia and shopped at Costco. We had 2 hours to kill, so we looked around and got to the restaurant a good 1/2 hour early, so we sat in the car and talked while I appliqued more. When we got home I was going to applique more but Charlie missed me all day and wasn't going to let that happen. So, no work was done last night.

Today I'm bowling in Longview, so applique work won't be done till later today. Still waiting on posting any photos of the top to get permission to post the pattern. I'll take picture of my progress so you can at least see that. Looking forward to seeing how far I get by our next TAS meeting with Haven't Missed a Stitch.

Friday, November 11, 2011


Today is the day to give thanks to all our veterans. Since I grew up in a military family, I know the meaning of thanking them for their work and dedication. For 5 generations, my family has served this country. Each generation gave that much more. We have lost family and survived.  A military family knows what it means to fight for this country. They don't take freedom for granite. So, please, instead of spitting on a veteran, how about you say "Thank you!" They are humble people. You might be surprised by their reaction. This is the day we honor them and what they have given us - Freedom - that is slowing being taken away from us.  My Thank You's go to all the military friends and families that served with my father, along with my father, Husband, nephew, and both brothers. Your my world!


Yesterday I actually got a few things done! lol Trouble is, my hubby and I were talking about Christmas. You know, the usual, what are we going to do?, Who are we giving gifts to?, and what is the budget this year? Well, we started going down the list, and guess what?, we figured a few more people in as we were going along. So, I decided instead of buying a gift for a friend, I could make know how we are. Well, that new project I didn't want to start - it got started. I'm working on one of Nancy Chong's 2 Fabric Applique. As soon as I get her permission, I will post the pattern and show you my colors. I was able to mark the top fabric and started basting it on the background fabric. I didn't get very far, but today is the other TAS group at my mothers. So, I'm taking it along and will try to finish basting and then start appliqueing it down.  It goes fast, so hopefully my time line is good. I bought the batting for both this one and the frog pattern I did awhile back. I have the frog for another friend, but she already knows about it.  Looking forward to today! 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Slowly getting there...

The past two days have been productive in ways of quilting. I was able to get about 4 hours quilting time in. That felt good. Till I looked at my quilting lines and realized I needed to quilt a little more. Funny how that works. Not only that, I found that my quilting stitches are not what they used to be, so I'm trying to work on that too. There are big stitches and little stitches, but most of the time I find I'm the only one that really sees that. This time though, I think others will too. Yesterday I got in another 2 hours. The quilting goes quick. I just need to sit down and quilt.

Yesterday afternoon I went downstairs and looked at the next block in the Block of the Month from SWWRDQG (SW WA Rainy Daze Quilt Guild). Remember, I started this back in 2001 when they first came out. So, this block wasn't my favorite and I think I have always loved the pattern, just too much a chicken to do it. Now, I get to do it, not just one, but two. Ugh. I cut the background fabric for both of them, and I still need to decide what colors I'm going to use for the flowers. That may take me a little while. My daughter said she wanted orange and red. So, I'll work on those colors. Mine is more blues and purples. I have plenty of those colors.

This is the Carolina lily.

So, I have all the background cut and ready to go, I did the bias for the stems, (I decided to sew the stem up the middle instead of appliqueing it), and now just need to pick the bud colors. It may take me a little while to decide. Who knows, if today goes well, I may go down and cut those as well.

I am trying to get a hold of the author to the book, "Affairs of the Heart," so I can post my workings on here. I tried Facebook, with no answer. So, till I can get the permission to post, I'll just have to tell you how that goes.

I took a photo of the BOM pattern that is before this one. I believe this is #5 in the 12 blocks issued. Some of the months had more then one block to do, so there is more to this then meets the eye. I'm doing the embroidery and the applique to #5, then will start #6 (The Carolina Lily).

I'm working on the center part now. It won't take long to get it done, I'm just taking my time. I did finish my daughters orange one, and really liked the results.

So, that is where I am today. Who knows what the next few days will bring. I do have TAS meeting this week on Thursday and Friday. I'm hoping I'll get a lot more done then. In the mean time, I think I'm going to do laundry and quilt. That sounds like fun. My only problem is I found a game I'm hooked on and want to check every so often to see if I have more energy to play. SHAME on ME! lol  I'll go quilt and try to behave.....good luck with that.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Yesterday and today were interesting days!

Yesterday was one of those days - when you plan for things and it doesn't happen. Yep that was my day. I planned on spending time with my daughter, but she had other plans. That was okay. I planned on getting laundry done, and that didn't happen. I ended up cleaning up the kitchen and doing a few things around the house. I had planned on watching TV and quilting all afternoon - that almost happened. Forgot I had a mammogram in the afternoon, so that shot my quilting time down to only about 1 1/2 hours. But that's okay. I did get some quilting in, and that's what matters. I planned on a good meal, but that didn't happen. My husband and daughter had their chipped beef dish while I tried to make myself some stir fry. That could have been better. After all that it was bowling. I planned on bowling good - that didn't happen either. My first game was good! I bowled a 204. I thought I could get that 600 after all - nope. I bowled a 154 and a 178. UGH. My average is 182....or lets say it was 182.

This morning I was kicked out of bed by my husband to make breakfast for my daughter and husband. That didn't happen....MY, is there a trend here?? I was kicked out of bed at 7:00 am because my daughter was returning to Pullman. I didn't mind, but she was in such a big hurry, she didn't get breakfast, and I didn't make it. So, I played on the computer - Facebook of course - for about an hour, then had to get ready to go to the casino. I did mop the kitchen floor so I did do some choirs. So, we went to the casino with my parents. That was interesting too. We came back with $40 more then we took, so that's not bad.

Now, I'm going to go watch Disney channel and enjoy some cartoons. AND quilt. Till next time.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Slowly Getting There

Yesterday was a good day for quilting. I was able to put in a couple hours. Charlie was enjoying her sleep next to my daughter. I'm sure we'll go back to normal after my daughter leaves on Saturday. It's been a good visit. I went to the eye doctors to get my new glasses. They changed the bi-focal and so far it's better for my crafts. The reading part is off a little but that's okay as long as I can see my needlework. I'd hate to loose that sight.

Been working on the leaf design. It's coming along pretty well. I will start going around the leaf with the purple quilting thread. I'm finding I really like the YLI better then the Gutermann thread. I'm using both because of the color choices. I did find a thread in YLI that would work for the purple but I already started quilting using the Gutermann thread. I found that Gutermann thread is lighter and at time I think it's going to break. YLI reminds me of the quilting thread they had back in the 60's and 70's. It's a better quality and well worth using for hand quilting.

We went to the Pacific Quilter's quilt show in September and looked all over for quilting thread. There was a ton of quilting thread, but it was more for machine quilters then it was for hand quilters. We bought a "quilting" thread that we thought would work and was in a pretty purple. When I started to quilt on it, it was like quilting with regular thread and broke easily. The thread was not cheap either. I was so ticked off that it wasn't thick like it should be and broke way to easily. It was a newer company and had all the colors you wanted. I thought about it after I took all the quilting out of my quilt, and decided I wouldn't even use it for machine quilting. Not that I would do machine quilting. I hate sewing on the machine, let a lone quilting on a machine. Then again, never say never. So, I have come to the conclusion, if I'm even going to buy quilting thread, I need to stay with YLI. I just hope they don't go out of business like the first company did back in the early 1980's. The thread my mother bought back then lasted a good 10 years because she bought as much as she could before they went out of business.

Recently I went to a quilt show here in Centralia, WA and was surprised at how much machine quilting was the "norm." I found only a few things that were hand quilted. Some where quilts that were done in the early 1900's. The was a disappointment to me. I grew up learning how to do crafts by hand. Now I'm finding people that do crafts do the "quick and easy" method instead of learning how to do things by hand. Excuses are they don't have time, it takes too long. Truthfully, it doesn't take that much time, yes it takes longer then machine piecing or quilting, but the end result is so much better. It's relaxing and enjoyable. You put more pride into it when you know you made it from "scratch." When I sit in front of the TV, I don't waste my time clued to the TV. I actually have something in my lap I'm working on. If not quilting, then I'm appliqueing or I'm cross stitching. Something is in my hands when the TV is on. I don't miss much when the TV is on. I have even been known to have the sewing machine up here doing embroidery work, while I'm on the computer. If the computer is doing the work for me, I have my applique handy and work on it while I wait for the computer to download or play the game I'm playing. If I have an appointment with the doctors or just going with a friend, I take along some applique work or piecing and work on it while I wait. Unless I'm more in the mood to play games, then I take my DS. I just try to work on my stuff every chance I get. My family will even tell you, it's rare to find me not working on something.

Today I have an appointment in the afternoon, so will probably take my applique to finish up that block I was working on on Tuesday. I'll try to get some quilting in this afternoon, since bowling is tonight. My hip is acting up, and a little sore but I can manage. Would like to get my 600 series tonight, but I'll just keep working on it. Today will be interesting to see what I get done. I slept in later then usual and that puts me a little bit behind. Oh, well.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Another attempt at Quilting

Halloween only brought about 6 kids to the house. They were really dressed up this year! I enjoy seeing all the new and different costumes they come up with. I do miss the days when we went all out for Halloween but since our children are grown and gone, it's not as much fun. Looking forward to little children coming to visit from time to time. My nephews children are too far away to enjoy them, but I can keep hoping others will be visiting in the next few years.

Quilting is going along pretty good. I finally finished the center of the Hawaiian quilt. I'm starting to echo around the leaves and flowers that come from the center. This quilt is going faster then I thought. I was lucky enough to have my daughter here for a short time and she kept Charlie at bay for me. Charlie seemed to want to sleep between the two of us. When my daughter got  up to go downstairs, then Charlie decided it was time to sit in my lap. Moving a big 18 year old cat, to get quilting done is not easy. The hardest part is when your quilting the center of the quilt and it doesn't matter where she sleeps, you still have to pull to move her. Talk about dirty looks! Hand quilting isn't as hard as most would think. It's relaxing and worth the time.

Today is a day I plan to get a few stitches in on quilting. Yesterday while my daughter and I were getting our hair cut, I worked on my BOM Affairs of the Heart. I'm almost done with another block. I do need to do the embroidery around two blocks and my take those for projects to work on when I go places. Embroidery is fun and easy to do. It really brings out a quilt.

Off to try and get something done today, even if it is laundry.

BE Meeting And Cross Stitching

This morning was our BFF (BE meeting) day. I was all ready to go. Called Cherry to see if she was going. She was waiting on the guys that do...