Saturday, September 29, 2007

Well, I'm touched..

Thanks so much to everyone with all the helpful suggestions and prayers sent my way. Unfortunately we've tried everything. Cooked enough food for an army, bought everything. She folds her arms, sticks out her lip and refuses! My brother said yesterday that she's almost come full circle and gone back to being a toddler in a way because she's acting exactly like a 3 year old child having temper tantrums. She's determined not to eat anything she "thinks" might taste bad, although she can't taste anything anyway. She's developed thrush...a yeast infection in her mouth and although after trying the lozenges they gave her and realizing they really worked...she stopped using them. NO reason, just control issues. I really don't think it's an attempt to just go ahead and end her life because she has huge plans for Thanksgiving and Christmas...when she gets better. It's us kids who keep reminding her that unless she eats she WON'T get better.

SO yesterday after spending 4 hours getting her ready for my brother and sister to take her to the docs for blood work I finally went home. My sister called 25 minutes later. Her blood pressure was 70/50...almost no pressure. She went straight to the hospital. So I went and packed her bag and met them. She'll stay hopefully for a few days, at least until Monday. They can fill her with fluids and nutrition. Although I have doubts because the idiot doctor put her on a regular diet?? Hopefully after the nurses report she's eating nothing they will put her on the feeding tube.

Seriously thanks for all the support. I love the notes and will try to get back to all of you. I'm sewing today no matter what. It's saturday so all the working siblings are taking their turns, and I have holly blocks to make for my sampler. The windows are open and the breeze is a fabulous 73!!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Is there life out there?...

Just thought I'd pop in to say that I'm still here and swamped with Mom issues at the moment. A chemo appointment day that turn into a marathon 8 hour day that started with waiting 2 hours for the 15 minute doctor appt and then getting started for 4 hours of chemo. Plus having a sinus cold, and a UTI that decided I didn't have enough to do already that day! I was wiped out! and I didn't do anything but sit. I know you working gals do it valiantly every day, but I don't and it killed me! She's doing great with the chemo..2 sessions left. But the main issue now is that she refuses to eat. She can't taste anything, so therefore she refuses to eat. It's infuriating that she could survive the cancer and the chemo...but end up dying because she stubbornly won't eat. Not can't, but WON'T. Suffice it to say my mother is incredibly stubborn and no matter of cajoling, begging or threatening by all of us kids seems to work. Even doctor's warning. So no food makes for an increasingly frail and weak mother and requires an extraordinary amount of care from all of us...which I'm sad to say is probably the perk that keeps her doing it. My level of frustration is beyond massive at the moment...but that's enough about that.

So I've not touched the computer for any length of time in the last week nor have I picked up a needle since I finished the last little quilt! No pictures, no warm words or interesting subjects to talk about. Great blog huh?

Seriously, I am so touched at how many of you commented about the quilt. I don't really have any idea how I plan to quilt it, but very simply I think because of all the seams. I plan to do the next one much simpler so I can dive into some baptist fans. This isn't the quilt for that, but I'll find a nice design for it! I need to get back to sewing and as soon as I am done with this post I plan to do just that! I have pieces to cut and things to ready for the next Christmas Sampler section! I laid out a plan of attack and should get some things done quickly, I hope. So better get to it. It will take me some time to catch up on all the wonderful things you have going on in your lives. Please send some of that energy my way!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Small Steps...

I finally sat down this week and made the first quilt in the series I ordered months ago from Homestead Hearth. 9 quilt patterns from one of Lori Smith's new patterns. Each month they send me 5 FQ's and I make the next quilt in the series. I'm about to receive month 5 and I just made the first one...good start huh?

I can safely say I don't care to see another hourglass block for a few months. Yikes!... 16 pieces coming together at one intersection. It will go in the pile waiting for hand quilting. I got the grouping for all pink and brown quilts but this is probably the only one that I'll do in those colors. I want one next for Halloween so I'll pull out my blacks and oranges and do the next one in those colors. I like to keep these little beauties on the coffee table. The cats love them too. They squeeze themselves on them shoving aside the candy dish with their rumps. What is it with cats and laying on things?

I'm still working on my embroidery piece for the quilting bag and I'm picking out fabrics for the second section of the Christmas Sampler. I'll get moving on those blocks as I figure them out. We also joined Netflix this past weekend and got our first movies which got watched almost right away. I think I'm gonna like having them come right to the door. It's been fun to see all the old movies that they have in their catalog plus the TV series DVD's. I started watching Charmed where I left off at Season 4. Great shows to quilt by!

Now off the find some batting and backing for this newest piece and pick out the colors for the next one!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Finally Sewing...

I got my swap done finally and sat down today to do some work on my Christmas Sampler by Cheri Saffiote-Payne. I had a lot of the blocks done already and then sat down to sew them together and do the angel blocks for the top section. They probably look nothing like angels at the moment but they don't have heads right now! That will help them along greatly tonight.

This is the first section all done and ready to wait for the second section to be added.

The only thing left to decide is whether or not to add the border around all the sides. The pattern calls for a 2" border on all sides, but I haven't decided yet if I want to add it or not. I also changed the snowman block to one more to my liking based on one another gal did in a friendship group on Yahoo I belong to. I plan to make a few changes actually. I think that's the fun of making someones pattern. Changing things to make them our own and closer to what we like and what works for us.

I'll show my swap piece after I mail it on the 25th and my swap partner receives it. Sorry but no previews before to goods arrive at their destination. It would spoil the surprise.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


This morning while reading the paper I realized that sometimes being so close to a major landmark can make you indifferent and cause you to take such things for granted. I often take for granted that I live only about 20 minutes from Colonial Williamsburg and Historic Jamestown Fort. It always amazed me growing up that families would spend whole vacation weeks just to visit Williamsburg?!?! Even the big 400th year celebration of Jamestown that brought the Queen of England over here for a visit was partially poo-pooed by the locals. They had trouble giving away the tickets. This is actually quite sad really.

Then this morning I saw the pictures of the newest findings in the Jamestown Rediscovery Project and being that it was a copper-alloy thimble is really peaked my interest. Quilt related you know... I guess I was expecting it to be much cruder, forgetting that these ladies came from England and all over with their treasures. Most didn't even have wedding rings. But I bet this thimble was a prized possession indeed. Lost years ago in a cellar. They have determined that it was made in Nuremburg Germany, and if you look closely inside the red circle of the picture below, they believe they found what looks like a makers mark, which could help them identify the maker.

Can you imagine how many times this was used? Was it handed down or new? From a very wealthy family or not? How many tiny stitches did it accomplish before getting lost? Boggles the mind actually...and something definitely not to be taken for granted.

Sunday, September 9, 2007


You may have remembered that over the last few weeks I mentioned a swap I was working on that had to remain secret? Well I got my swap the other day from my Yahoo Group's swap partner and just had to share because it's so pretty! It's the greatest wool table mat embellished with gorgeous orange beads and complete with a big wooden pumpkin and a "Mug Rug" just for me to use.
I'm still working on finishing my swap piece and getting it out to my swap mate. After she gets it, I'll post a picture here to show what I've spent all that time doing. I have done things along the way, but now I must buckle down and get it finished.

During Primitives last June I fell in love with a bag that Libby at A Simple Girl carried to class. About a month ago I received my pattern and drew out the lines for the front panel of the bag and got it hooped and ready to start embroidering. Last week I started spending a few minutes here and there working on it. Just when I have 15 minutes or so to put in a few stitches. At this rate I should finish in time for next years Primitives retreat! Just so it doesn't look identical, I plan to make mine out of red, blues, and dark green plaids instead of the blacks , browns and tans.
It's still extremely slow going around here but I'm getting things accomplished slowly. Once the swap piece is done I'll be able to get back to some of my own projects and see where that takes me.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Another Method...

Most of you know how I love conventional needleturn applique, there's just something about turning that edge under and doing the hand work that I find peaceful and comforting, I like being able to move the line and shape the curve to my whim by just using a needle tip to tun under the seam allowance. But however, sometimes you see another option and wonder just how well it works. If it's really easier? I followed a link made my Dawn to a new blog site for me called Snippets of a Quilter and was wowed by her great instructions with pictures for another method for applique that I'm sure many of you have done and known about for ages. Well for me it was familiar...but not having to take out the paper before sewing (my pet peeve) made me look closer.

You iron the the paper and use a small Clover Iron to starch the edges around towards the back and ta-da, your pieces are all ready to be sewn with no turning. Now I always liked the method but hated having to cut the background to get out the paper. Well this method takes it out first and so I tried it. Worked like a charm even on the larger pieces! These were just 2 small leaves/buds for my swap project...leftovers actually that didn't make the project and they turned out really fast and very well shaped. Something else I was worried about with this method. I shouldn't have worried.

The back looks neat and the fronts have very nicely curved edges with no bumps or notches. I was very surprised! In no time I have more pieces that I ever needed.The one thing I changed was to make the pattern piece out of 2 pieces of freezer paper carefully ironed together for maximum strength. Makes it last longer with the wet fabric. I can now see doing a whole quilt block like this. Wendy just finished a piece by Lynda Hall that's in my list of things to make using this method and I think I might use this technique for that quilt as well! Also check out her pictures of a fabulous quilt show at the Buggy Barn! Fabulous!

I know there is nothing from me and hasn't been lately, but this swap needs to go out and I can NOT work on anything else until I get it finished...the secret swap. What with whole days disappearing for Mom's doctor visits, I have lost so much time, so I have to soldier on and get done! On the the hand quilting! Thanks ladies for all the pick me up's. I'm getting better at handling the stress and can't wait to get started on a few new quilts once I get my obligations out and off in the mail!

Monday, September 3, 2007

I'm here... fabulous last minute vacation, no special projects to use as an excuse. Just going through a rough patch and finding avoidance more comforting ...or easier...than struggling to work things out. Stress overwhelms me and when I get that way I start to sink and avoid everything. Sewing has been extremely difficult for some bizarre reason and obligations overwhelming. But this isn't a blog about any of that.

I have nothing fabulous to show at the moment..hence nothing to write about but I wanted to check in all the same. I did get several packages thing week. One I was especially waiting for was a book that was mentioned by Lucy on her blog...and then ordered by Mary...and ME and it turns out Libby too! Fabulous book! I am looking forward to doing much more hand quilting and many more fabulous designs! I ordered three new patterns from Lynda Hall to add to the ever growing list of fabulous quilts I simply must do! Prairie Christmas Star, Night Flight and Family Branch. Click on the Keeping Room and scroll through to find each pattern on Linda's site. Prairie Star and Night flight are newer and in the Keeping Room. Family Branch is under Patterns.

I did sew together most of my Christmas Sampler top section this week and will get a picture up very soon. Hope everyones working away on something wonderful!