Sunday, May 31, 2009

spring to finish results....

Well I didn't do too bad with my finishes. I missed the deadline in April and was glad to have it extended for the month of May too!

1. I finished my Taupe Tumbler bom after years of it patiently waiting for me to find the inspiration to get it done!

2. I got my Four Seasons stitchery quilt all done!

3. I did my Bunny Mini quilt from Jan Patek's club too.

4. I also finished quilting my patriotic Top Hat quilt just in time for decorating for the holiday season.I finished the top a while back and just didn't get around to quilting until the mad dash this month! It's called #343 Tip Your Hat from Pieces from my Heart.

I think that's all I officially finished this month. Not too bad. I'll have to swing over to Jacquie's and give my final tally for the challenge! You should go see her son's graduation quilt!

Lastly, I want to give a big thanks to all you lovely gals who sent warm caring wishes to me for getting better. Really I am just fine. I was having a bad day, after 2 insanely stupid weeks of running around with one thing after another, and I thought I would come off a little more COMICAL than PITIFUL. Okay so the leg still looks like a tree trunk but it doesn't hurt and what can you do, but laugh? Another reason I don't wear shorts...FAT legs! LOL! One's just fatter than the other with a little more jiggle!

I've had quilting slumps before, but I hate them every time they come around. I like being interested in what I'm doing and hate when I see several lovely things to do and no desire to actually DO any of them. BUT, I've been taking my little embroidery stitches one at a time and the Patriotic Annie is almost done!!

Friday, May 29, 2009

I think I see tumbleweeds.........

that's just how exciting it's been around here lately! Oh don't think I'm not working along merrily taking a stitch here and there, but it's oh so blah use another word. Sad but true. A "sort of" invisible cloud of blue funk has engulfed the house and put everything on "ho hum yawn". Or so it feels.

Not wanting to turn this into a medical littany of complaints blog, lets see if I can encapsulate my last few weeks in a quick burst. SO here's the scoop...knees inflamed, got a bit better only to wake up with right thigh swollen like a tree trunk, do ultra sounds, thankfully no blood clots, not better, schedule an MRI....get to the place and realize I have to lay FLAT on back for 45-50 minutes (pause to say...laying flat= pinched nerve+ slipped disk = extreme pain) in a tube...FREAK OUT! Try 3 times to calm down and do said MRI ...Nope, reschedule.

*Okay, I realize I didn't think beforehand but I was thinking 20 minutes and I always get that lovely wedge under my knees...not flat with my feet taped together*

So...back again this week+ drugs = SUCCESS! Results?..My leg is swollen and inflammed....duh! Cha-Ching...give us all your money. Meanwhile, sugars are down but not enough, and I'm not losing any weight? No sugar/chocolate, I'm thinking should = weight loss...what the hell? I gained 6 pounds this week! In one week! I'm doing something wrong. Oh and yea...toss in a little UTI infection too. FABULOUS!I'm tired. Is it nap time yet?

Now, I owe some lovely ladies some swap blocks...I'm off to sew a few stitches! I'll be back when I have something more quilty to say...or show.

Monday, May 25, 2009

nothing special....

Hope you all had a great holiday weekend vacation. We just hung around and did things here and there. Mostly lots of nothing in particular. I would have loads of wonderful quilts and blocks ready to show you but I'm sorta in a big 'ole quilting blah at the moment. Ever get those....loads to do...too much as a matter of fact.... and no desire to really get interested in any one thing.

Do I want to do Brownstone blocks? Or work on Geese in the Forest? or swap blocks, or ABC Quilt Sampler blocks? Hum...blah. Here's what I did this last week...

~Finally added but did NOT finish sewing a binding on Patriotic Top Hat...

~Started embroidery on Patriotic 4th Annie...

~Organized my leftover/ saved ribbons...does everyone else keep ribbons to use again?

~Started and almost finished embroidery section of the Rooster block for the ABC Sampler...

~Cut fabric for 108 swap blocks for my swap group! Plus 5 signature blocks for the back of the quilt!

~ Washed, ironed, and folded 4 loads of new fabrics!

Plus generally putz around doing all sorts of things. Reading about quilting, diabetes cooking, a good mystery and more.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

just a little tip...

As I was putting away my newest quilted projects in the closet...I realized maybe a few others would like to see how I store my very favorite good quilts. Not that they aren't all good, but you know...the really nice ones that don't drag on the floor and get used to snuggle with on the sofa.

Every second Saturday, we head out in the early am to do the 2 weeks of grocery shopping. It's the day after hubby gets paid. On my way across the Walmart I always breeze down the sheet isle and pick up 2 or 4 of these generic 100% cotton zippered pillow covers. $3.44 each. I have about 10 on hand at any given time. ** I called them pillowcase covers...when actually they are pillow covers that go over your pillow, then your pillowcase slides right over. They protect your pillow!*
I slide my good quilts right in there and zip them up! No CAT hair, no dirt! They stay safe and sound and I use a Pigma Marker to write the name of the quilt on the end by the zipper and on the side that faces out on the shelf.

It's a good thing!

Friday, May 15, 2009

helping the economy...

I'm still keeping my pennies close to the vest, like I'm sure everyone else is at the moment too...but I still find time to do a tiny bit of shopping here and there to do my part. Kathie mentioned something the other day about going through cycles of fabric liking or wanting to work with a new 'type" of fabric every so often. I go through that too. Mostly when I find a new blog and LOVE the look of everything they do, or I delve into my quilt books and see older reproduction quilts that call my name.

On that front I did a tiny bit of sale shopping. One of my favorite online stores... Glorious Color... had all their Jay McCarroll fabrics on sale and I could hold out no more. These are just too cute! I sooo loved him on Project Runway! Speaking of that show...does anyone else find it ODD that they wanted more exposure so they moved to ???Lifetime??? When did Lifetime, the sappy Joan Collins, Danielle Steels movie network become better and more popular that BRAVO??? Huh? Am I the only one scratching my head? Not to mention Bravo has their own show now, which I haven't watch yet...just seen the commercials. Seriously? Lifetime?

Okay back to fabrics. I've been eyeing some lovely Trip Around the World doll quilts and small quilts in my antique books, so I had to supplement my solids stash. I think all I have is a few reds, greens and blues, so these being on sale I thought I'd go for a nice smattering of colors. They look goofy together but they will look nicer when just the right colors are mixed together.

Lastly, I *finally* finished the Nine Orange Pumpkins block for the ABC sampler. I got so stuck and just laid it aside. It was sewing all those tiny letters and really not liking how they looked, but determined to use only cotton in this quilt. So I stopped. But I picked it up again 2 nights ago and got moving and finished. So I'm satisfied with them. Not 100% but they are small and there's 3 layers of fabric under those tiny letter legs that are barely 1/4" in width. I wanted to make them bigger but wasn't sure if the block could stand the size and now I think maybe it could have gone a tiny bit bigger. But hey...I'm about 95% happy and 95% ain't all bad!

Now on to the Rooster and Santa!! Happy Quilting weekend ladies!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Loser Monday again....

It's that day again ladies. I think I might have lost a half pound but who knows. The scale wants to flip between what I weighed all week and one number lower so it's somewhere between there right? Seems to me I should be dropping serious poundage since I gave up chocolate!.... Right? Sounds only fair to me, darn it.

I've been creeping along here sewing some new projects for a change! Who decided that we had to get every old thing done before we could start anything new? Somewhere in my OWN head I made this rule and didn't even want to keep up with it but I always feel guilty if I don't!! Weird! So with all the recent finishes, I earned the right to start new stuff! I have the binding to put on the last quilted piece and then I'll take a picture.

Meanwhile all this.....

is turning into these lovelies..... Cathi will recognize them!
Also last but not least, I've spent my nights sewing these babies.... They look very rough here, but after I remove the extra fabric strips that I use to extend the block size to fit the bigger hoop, I'll add the last few wool stars on the bottom one and do the piecing around the stitchery on both. Better pictures will follow!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

More finishes....

Spring to finish is still going on if you need some motivation!! As I was moving about on bloglines I came across the announcement that Jacquie was extending the inspiration month with Spring to Finish II! So I have a very good reason to get moving and count my finishes! Two more are done tonight and ready for their debut! Go over and see what a great goodie the first winner will receive for getting chosen! Of course just getting inspired is a good thing too!

Now on to some more finishes!

Four Seasons by Joann Mullaly
65 x 80

The Four Seasons quilt is quite large! Larger than I had really realized until I was hefting it around and around on the machine! Scroll down for a picture of my finished top if you want a bit more detailed. Since the quilt holder was still at work, I laid it out on my bed for this picture. It's a stitchery quilt with embroidered blocks and was a bom offered by Country Loft. I think you can still get the pattern on their site.

I meandered the whole quilt rather large and used a nice medium tan/beige in the end to match the stitchery blocks. It showed a bit in the darker blocks but I really ended up liking the result.

Second finish....(3rd total overall) is my Jan Patek Mini Club selection for Easter. I changed a few things up in the quilt and did a simple crosshatch for quilting. I like crosshatch on these small wall hangings. WOW I just saw the new mini that should be coming soon to my house...the Flag and Chicken mini...VERY cute!! Will have to be made right away when it arrives!!

That's 3 down and a few more to get done! I have 2 new patriotic quilts I really MUST get moving on if I want them up this year. I have yet to even start those!! Then I have one to quilt tomorrow, and another to baste for quilting. Busy, busy, busy!!

Monday, May 4, 2009

late but still here...

Loser Gals, I'm here! I've been doing well with the sugar thing. No chocolate for the three weeks or so that I've been aware of the sugar being too high...or at least admitting it to myself, lets be honest. But I'm doing good and....

I'm down another 1 pound.

I've gone back and forth so many times I swear I think it's about 9 pounds lost total so far...or is it more?? less? I expect that the still present thigh swelling is still holding a good 6 pounds of water, so I can't wait to figure out how to get it gone and wake up to see 6 or 7 pounds drop off! Have another doc visit tomorrow to see why it's not getting better. Won't that be so cool to drop that much. Anyway, still working on getting the next few finishes photographed and on the blog but I needed to do my part to check in with the rest of the losers!! Keep up the good work ladies!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

coming up for air....

It's summer here as we've hit the first 80 degrees string of 7 or so days, so no going back to spring or even winter. So I thought I'd lighten up the blog too for a while. I love the prim look but I also like to change things up every now and then too.

So....been waiting for some finishes??? Enough suspense...I finished the taupe Pinwheels quilt and the "quilt holder" got busy, but the other will have to wait till tomorrow or the next day.

Shades of Taupe Sampler
61 x 82

I never seem to remember the hanging sleeves until right about now! Oh well, I need to get a label on it and that will be good for now. Hope you like seeing it. Back tomorrow with more!

** I should have given the details for the quilt in the first place huh?? This was a block of the month offered by during 2006(??) I think. So far it's still not available as a pattern for the moment, I'm afraid. But the last time I gave out the info someone called the store and they said the designer was thinking of making the pattern available if there is enough interest. So by all means email and call if you want the pattern!**

Friday, May 1, 2009

Spring to Finish...

Well I didn't quite get my Spring to Finish stuff done by the end of April and you know what? It doesn't matter! I won't win the prizes, but I am quite proud of myself that I got 6 tops completed and ready for quilting...pinning included and two are large quilts. I have the 3rd almost done and by the end of the weekend I hope to have all 6 of them bound and called D-O-N-E!!

That's enough to make me smile and count myself as a winner!

I wanted to show the Taupe Tumbler ready to start up again with the last little bit left to quilt. I love the color I used...Aurifil 1140 coconut, I think. I ordered it once to substitute for the 1138 and it's a lovely brown. It blends with everything so well I have crossed myself a couple times not seeing my own stitches!

I'm quilting right over top all the applique and all. No need to have to go around them all and then sew them down too. The very large meander cover it all and does a good job. I would have done a smaller meander but with the heaviness of this top. I was afraid the quilt would stand on it's own! Besides, Warm and Natural has a quilting recommendation of being quilted every 10 inches! SO I have that covered well.

Now the last thing you have to see is this video! if your cats ever wake you up in the morning you will howl at this...Pixel is my alarm clock every morning. Minus the bat..he does exactly this e-v-e-r-y day. Pay close attention to the cat at the very last minute! Cat video on YouTube. I used to know how to show it here, but somehow I can't figure it out at the follow the link.