A Quilt Challenge and a very sad sad loss

So, lately, I have been a  big whiner about the fabrics in some charity quilts I was making.  However, once they were put together they were not nearly as bad as I thought. On the other hand,  the plaid fabric challenge is killing me. This is a guild sponsored challenge.   Everyone who wanted to participate in the challenge had to bring in 1 yard of plaid fabric and 5 or 10 dollars (can’t remember).  The top three winners will divide the money, everyone gets to vote for their favorites.

You have to use some of every single fabric in your quilt.   That is the only rule.  It can be any size or a runner.  I see only one fabric repeated.  But, holy cow, when you put them together they are a scary bunch of fabrics.  The one-yard was divided up between everyone who was participating.  The result was about a 6×8 inch piece of some of the ugliest fabrics.  It may take a miracle.

I have somewhat of a potential idea of something, but I am scared that I will hate it and then not want to work on it.  thoughts anyone?

I want a do-over on 2020.  Besides the stuff happening in our society.  The saddest thing I can ever recall happened.  My daughter’s best friend called on Thursday afternoon, hysterically screaming.  Once we got her to speak so we could understand, she told us that he just found her little brother hanging in the woods behind her house.  I told her to call 911 and we were on our way.  We flew there.  Beat all the EMS and police.  Haley was checking the house and I took off to the back of the woods.

There I saw beautiful sweet Savannah and her little brother holding up their other brother.  The sheriff drove to the back near the woods, flew out of the car and I pointed to them.  He ran up with his knife and cut him down.  Paramedics arrived and carried him out of the woods and began trying to revive him.  I asked my daughter to please not look.  She says she did not.  We hugged Savannah and her brother as hard as we could, while they worked to revive him.  No one knows how long he had been there.  We got to the house in less than 10 minutes, which is still too long.

They did get his heart started and flew him to Children’s, but he died a few hours later.  My heart is broken for this family.  I love sweet Savannah.  No note, so outward signs, and a 14-year-old boy is gone.  It is unimaginable.

I can not get the picture of Savannah and her little brother holding Gaven up out of my mind.  It won’t leave me.  It is a heartbreaking image that wakes me up multiple times at night.

Please, please hug your children, no one knows what tomorrow brings.

Say a prayer for the family.

Some Important Lessons learned

Hello Fellow Quilters!

Lesson #1 – I hated these fabrics when thy were given to me to make a donation quilt.  I hate them a little lesson now that it is together.  It looked better on the design wall than it did in the picture.  I think this would look better with some different fabric.  I may try it with some of my own at some point. Lesson is,don’t always judge fabrics so harshly, sometimes they will surprise you.

Lesson #2 – If you don’t have a carbon monoxide detector, get one.  We all could have lost 20200531_200223our lives.  Our ancient (20+ years) carbon monoxide detector, went off and would not stop.  Initilly we thought it was nothing, but something said call the fire department and have it checked.  It goes off when the kids unplug it or bump it and it beeps to let you know that it is on battery power.   Well, when the firre department came, they opened the door and shut it immediatly.  They said that they could not go in without oxygen.  They suited up and returned to tell us that they had never seen carbon monoxide this high in any house.  They set up some fans and got us some things we needed out of the houser and we were off to spend the night at the neighbors.  The next day it turned out that the exhaust pipe from our water heater became disconnected and all the Carbon monoxide was going directly into the house.  We had it repaired and the fire department came back did a recheck and we could return home.  Please, if you have propane or natural gas anywhere in yur home, pleaase get one.  If yours is old, please replace it.  It saved us.  We would have all been dead in less than 30 minutes.  Lucky for us it was a nice day and we had been outside, so we had only been in the house for about 10 minutes.  Phew.  I was bit freaked out about the whole thing.  Yikes.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

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A blast from the past and something new

I have been on a mad cleaning rampage in my studio and general area.

In my cleaning, I came across a couple of quilt blocks from a quilt that I made for my niece about 15 years ago.  It was a quilt full of family photo’s mostly of her but a smattering of everyone else.  The blocks were about 8 x 8 and each one had a photo in the center.  The back had Georgia Tech 20200229_164038fabric.  She got it for her college graduation from …..Georgia Tech.  Oh, and yes, I made the Minnie Mouse costume she is wearing.  I used to have a photo album of all the quilts I had made way back then, but they were lost in a flood.  I should ask her for a photo.

The other photo was in my parent’s back yard.  It was a really cute quilt.

20200229_163918So, What is new?  Well, I made myself an ironing station, finally.  I love it.  There is so much storage.  I don’t even have it filled yet (almost).  I love it.  It is fabulous.  A hare but still awesome.  I had been looking everywhere for the right storage and found it at IKEA.  Each set of drawers cost about $53.00.  The top is made out of birch, which I am told can deal with moisture and is very durable.  I hope so.

Happy Sewing, Happy Quilting

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Learning…..

Where have I been?  Jeez, no kidding.  I feel like it has been forever.  Sure has been a rough year.

I have been practicing my long arm.  Just about done with this one.  Nothing crazy. just simple stuff to start.  I like this quilt.  Funny, because I said I was going to practice on an “ugly one”.  I will get to that.

So, the below machines are not pretty, but they are packed with memories.  The Kenmore on the left was the machine my parents bought when my older sisters were doing the “Home-Ec” thing.  It was the only machine I sewed on for years.

The one on the right, was my grandmothers.  The last thing she sewed on that machine were my kindergarten clothes.  After that she got glaucoma and could no longer see.  When I would visit, this is the machine I would sew things together with.  I would just sew strips of fabric together.  Little did I know it would lead to a life long passion for collecting sewing machines and fabric.  My sister Karen had my grandmother’s machine and gave it to me when I saw her this past summer.  I just had them both serviced and they are working perfectly.

I have fabric that my Uncle brought my grandmother when he was in Hawaii (military man).  I have saved it many years.  I will incorporated it in a quilt and use her machine to piece it.

On the one Mom and Dad bought, I will sew the memory quilts from my little sister Kellie’s clothes that her husband gave me.  I have sort of begun, but there are so many memories that come back when I look at these clothes, it is hard.

While these machines are nothing special, they are special.  At least to me.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

 

Look what I got!

I got a Handi-Quilter Simply Sixteen and a little foot frame.  I am so excited.  I have wanted one for a long time, but I find it so hard to spend money on something I want.  I constantly think about the fact that I still have a child to educate blah blah blah.  The household consensus was “you really need to do something for you”.  SO, I got crazy and did.

It was super easy to set up. I was off practicing my quilting in no time.  The hardest part was adjusting the tension.

Now I am afraid to start on one of the many tops I have waiting.  I will have to bite the bullet and do it.  I think I will likely start with one of my ugly quilts.

More to come.

Tomorrow is that day.  The day I lost my sweet sister Kellie.  While it huts every day, that day is a reminder that I would rather not have.  I have to go to the office, which I am not sure is a good thing or a bad thing.  Hoping it keeps my mind occupied.  If nothing else, at least it will be just me, hiding in my office.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Treasure your Family

Trying to find my place…

I am lost in every sense of the word.

We went on vacation, which was good.  Some of vacation was for us (beach), then we met up with family.  My cousin and his family came from Germany.  I have not seen him in some time.  It was wonderful seeing them.

So for a couple of days, we went to Ocean City Maryland.  We had a great time.  I ate crab cakes and crab cakes and crab cakes.  I like crab cakes in case you have not guessed.

Then we went on to Washington DC to spend time with my cousin and my sister Karen and her family.  We had a great time there too.  But there was something missing.  My sister Kellie.  She was my traveling partner a lot.  Before we both married we had a really good time.  Even after marriage and children, we managed to sneak a couple trips in.  I miss that.  I miss her.  It just seems wrong.  I am wondering why I struggle so much with her death.  I have buried two husbands, but this one gets me.  I feel like I will never get over it.  I find myself not wanting to do anything, but I do.

Yes, you must suffer through my vacation photo’s.  I am even in them (I avoid photos like an allergy) LOL.

Spy Museum (D.C.), Beach, Me, Haley (daughter), Holger (cousin) and the capital.

Oh, and the quilt.  So, my most wonderful friend Nanette, sent me a box that had some scraps and a few finished blocks.  I made this interesting table runner from it.  It is a bit Improv, but I do like the colors a lot.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Another finish….and just in time

My family from Germany is coming to visit.  They should be arriving in the states today.  They have three weeks planned out.  We will be meeting up with them in Washington DC in a couple of weeks.  I have never met my cousin’s wife or daughter.   I am very excited to meet them in person.  We do chat and sometimes talk on WhatsApp.

So, Sophia and Christine, love horses.  They send me videos of Sophia riding her horse frequently, which I enjoy.  So, I made a horse quilt for her.

IT gave me such grief.  Mostly due to the fact that sometimes, I am just a dumba$$.

So, this was one of the quilts that I was basting when I had the spray debacle.  Funny thing that turned out to be the least of my problems.  I had this all rolled up ready to be basted.  Thought I was ahead of the game.  Hahaha.  Turns out that as I reached the bottom of the basting, I failed to measure this quilt.  I could say I improperly measured, but truth be told, I never measured it at all.  So, turns out my backing and batting was a few inches too short.

No way to unglue all that.  I decided to quilt it and leave 6 inches unquilted and then figure out what to do.  I sort of figured that I will piece the batting and backing on.

Well, I managed to piece in the piece of batting, not a big deal.  However, I had left over 20190719_192622-1.jpgarrow fabric that I was going to use to piece across the bottom.  Wrong.  Came out totally wonky and looked like a crazy person did it.  I think the problem was that it was directional and sewing the fabric on was not as easy as I thought.  Ended up finishing the quilting without the back and hand sewing a piece clear across the back along the bottom (light green).

I really did not like this quilt the entire time I was working on it, however now that is is finished, I do like it.  It looks like a horse quilt for a little girl and that is what I was going for.  The back came out OK despite my issues.

I got word today that they were in New York.  Looking forward to meeting up with them!

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Some awesome Quilting news…

The Uncle Donald Quilt goes to the Ohio History Museum, along with my grandmother’s.

What?  Holy Cow. 

Several weeks ago, a lady form the Ohio History Museum spoke at our guild meeting.  She talked about quilts up to about 1950.  I was not looking forward to this speaker, but it turned out that she was very knowledgeable about quilting and historical quilts.  In her presentation, she showed many lovely old quilts.  She explained that most of their quilts were donated and cam with the history attached to them.

When it was question time, I asked if they had any early quilts that were made by men.  She told me no they had never came across anything like that.  Once she was done speaking I showed her a photo of Uncle Donald’s quilt.  Right away she asked me if I would consider donating it. I would.  SO, she asked me to send her an email with any information I had.

That was easy.  I knew Uncle Donald, and he was one of my favorite people.  After he died I continued to visit Aunt Helen a couple for times a year.  We would go to lunch and talk about all sorts of things.  I often took her something I made when I visited.  Once time when I was there she gave me the “Uncle Donald Quilt”.   

I had no idea if he was illiterate.  My dad thought he was a pretty smart man, and I image her was, even if he was not educated.  I know my grandmother was, she was actually a school teacher at one point in her life, but boys became valuable farm hands and were often not educated past the 8th grade.

My Grandmother’s (Monnie) quilt

Uncle Donald had 8 sisters (one of them being my grandmother).  Since he was the youngest, he wound up joining in on the quilting.  He made his own quilt.  Aunt Helen thought I should have it, since he was my family. 

So I had all the provenance and sent her the information I knew.  She emailed me back information about my family after she researched them.  I had guessed the quilt was from about 1920, but was unsure.  I knew when my grandmother was born, but did not know that until Donald was born in 1907.  She thought that 1920 was pretty close because the 1920 census had listed him as an illiterate farmer.  He would have been 13 then and become a valuable farm worker and likely not had time for quilting after that.

So, my Uncle Donald Quilt will be part of the Ohio History Museum’s quilt collection, along with one of my grandmother’s.  Uncle Donald’s quilt will be the only one made by a man in the collection.

It feels very good to know that items from my family will be forever saved as part of a historical collection.

It takes about a year for things to be officially added to the collection along with filling out paperwork, but I am thrilled it will be forever saved.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

My Table Setting and my Quilting Godmother

So, everyone needs a Quilting Godmother.  Seriously, mine listens to my problems (personal and quilt related), leads me down the path of good quilting and then ever so often a box of awesomeness arrives at my home.

I never thought when I created my blog that I would make real friends here, let alone find a quilting Godmother.  Who would have thought?  I have found so many awesome like minded people through my blog.  I am ever so grateful for the friendships and comradeship.  I really do love you all (Nanette…you have a special place in my heart).

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Look at all this wonderful stuff I got from my Quilting Godmother (LOL)  There are such beautiful things in this box, I can’t even tell you.

I love creating like this.  I will take these things and then like a puzzle put them together.  So besides the quilting challenge, I also have the figure out how to put it all together challenge.

About my table setting…Looks great from distance.  Don’t look to close.  For whatever reason, a preschooler with safety scissors must have cut these out.  The place mats did not go together well, mostly due to the cutting.  Cutting accurately is so important.  Learned that lesson again…..dang it.

Since these are for my table, I will tolerate their mediocrity.  I actually created these so I WaterMark_2019-06-04-15-16-00could practice quilting spirals.  I have a quilt that I want to do the spiral pattern on and wanted more practice.

It did not turn out too bad.   The practice was good.  I will feel better when I set out to quilt the big quilt with spirals.

20190601_193652This is my Snibble and all the reason my things frequently come complete with dog hair.  I had these laying on the back of the couch as I completed the binding.  She decided that she needed to watch me as I worked and plopped herself on top of them.

So, my mother was from Germany.  It turns out that growing up, there were some made up words in my family (by my mother).  Snibbles was one of them.  I grew up thinking that Snibbles were little bits of paper or fabric (scraps) because that is what my mother referred to them as (along with her best friend who was also from Germany).  I was frequently told to clean up my Snibbles.  I learned while I was in college that it was not really a word.  It was rush week (yes, I was a sorority girl)  and we were doing something that involved cutting paper.  I said “we are going to have to clean up all these snibbles”, as if that was a word everyone knew.  They all looked at me like I was crazy, so I repeated myself.  Then came the laughter and the realization that this was not really a word, but something my mother and Betty (Mom’s best friend, also from Germany..I see a pattern here)  made up.  My whole life up til then, I thought Snibbles were  a real thing.

Snibble is now a real thing.  My late Husband named her that because she was a “scrap” of a dog (he was very familiar with the Snibble story).  He was working for a farmer changing oil on tractors and their dog had 13 puppies.  Only one was a girl and the boys were being mean to her and not letting her eat.  He rescued her for me.  She was all bit up when she came, but is a wonderful happy girl now.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Treasure your Family and your Quilting Godmother!

Ohhh Happy Day…and the Hand Quilt Along

I got annoyed with the scales on the fish on my last block and had to set it down.  The Octopus was much more fun anyway.  This is part of the someday under the sea quilt I have planned…..in my head…..

Please visit all the lovely ladies of the Hand Quilt along and see what they have been up to.  They never disappoint.

KathyLoriMargaretKerryEmmaTracyDebConnieSusan,  Nanette,  EdithSharonKarrin, and Gretchen

So, why happy day?…well, I got a job.  It has been 5 long months of me feeling sorry for myself, which does you help you get a job.  And…I got a job I wanted.

You would have thought that I would have spent 5 months off sewing up a storm, but I did not.  I did sew, but I did not get much accomplished, and I mostly ignored my blog.  Now I look back and feel stupid.  Kevin (AKA man friend),  never wavered.  He said I he always knew I would get another job.  He only wanted me to have one I liked, not one I took to pay the bills, like last time, and then I was miserable.  It is a good distance from home, but that is OK.

I am up to a 25 lb. weight loss, but am currently celebrating, so I don’t plan on losing anything this week.  Hopefully the weight loss plan will get back in swing with the new job.  Having a routine will make it easier for me.

It is birthday week at our house.  My oldest daughter had her birthday this past Thursday and my youngest (and my late husband Derrick) is on Tuesday.  We had a lovely birthday dinner , champagne chicken and red velvet cake.

I hope I am on my way back to myself.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Treasure your Family