So much time has passed…

So much time has passed since I last wrote a blog post. I really have no good excuse. Sometimes life just gets in the way. My daughter graduated with her Associate’s Degree and then graduated from High school, then the party. There has been a lot going on.

Sewing/quilting has always been part of my relaxation effort and it totally went by the wayside. It wasn’t that I did nothing…. I still collected patterns and fabric (LOL). But completed ver little.

I am hoping that life will slow down a bit for me now and I can get back to the things I love to do. I find that a little time in the sewing room does do a lot for me.

I attempted to make my first bag!. You know one with a zipper and everything. It is far from perfect, but I think I will try it again.

It has lots of issues, but I still don’t hate it. Pretty fabric. I did learn a lot, which is good. The instructions were not easy to follow, but I did watch a couple of videos that cleared a lot up for me. It takes three fat quarters, which is nice. For whatever reason, I also decided to do a lot of quilting. Not sure I would do that much quilting on the next one. Pretty sure all that quilting took me 5 times longer than assembling the bag.

My daughter will head off to Bowling Green in August. I will be left behind to figure out what to do with my life. She has been and is my life. For so long it has been her and I against the world. I knew this day would come, yet I still find myself totally unprepared. We do everything together and that will change. While I am her parent first, she truly is the most wonderful person in my life. After all, “I made her in my lady oven”.

I hope to find myself expressing myself more often in blog posts, so you may hear from me more as I navigate my way through the next phase of my life.

Happy Sewing

Happy quilting

A Quilting Reset

So, I had a conversation with “Special K” (significant other, life partner, manfriend, whatever you call him) about my general attitude. I just don’t feel myself. “I don’t even go in my sewing room anymore”, I said. His response, “Maybe that is the problem”. GENIUS!. Honestly have not found my balance since Kevin was in the hospital. I find myself spending more time with him, instead of going off by myself and doing my thing. Likely a mistake.

So, how does one reset? They go to a quilting retreat. Yep, our local guild is going on a retreat, organized by my partner in crime (Lynn) and I. Leaving this afternoon and coming back on Sunday. Hoping this put me back in the habit. I think it will.

So what have I done? Not much. I did make a few dog bandanas (picture). It was something quick and easy.

Snibble modeling on the left. Ruger modeling on the right. Two of my favorite Puppers!

So, we had an ice storm. The trees were beautiful. It actually stayed for a couple days. I am hoping the retreat helps me fix things. I threw a bunch of projects in a bag and off I go. Fingers crossed.

Maybe some crazy retreat photos to come!

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

And Just like that…it’s nearly Christmas

Good thing I finished those placemats.

They came out OK. It does make my dining room look festive. My Santa chair covers also help. The stuffed dogs? Well, Raising Cains chickens sells them every year. I recently got 2 new ones (Charlie Brown and Snoopy). Proceeds go to help dogs. My daughter thought they needed to be in the photo. They are always yellow labs in a costume. Super-Cute.

The placemats came out ok. After I made a couple, I was unhappy with my thread choice. It was a pretty red/green twist. It just looks dark to me. Fortunately, my lines are pretty straight so it does not look that bad. I wish I had used thread that matched the background fabric. Next time.

So, I sent my Plaid Challenge Quilt to my brother-in-law. He had a rough year, so I thought it might make him happy and he does have to live with my sister. LOL. They sent me this picture last night of it over thier love seat.

I do love it when I see one of my quilts in use or displayed.

Everyone at my house is not feeling well. Not horrible illness, just enough to annoy you. Makes it difficult to get things done for the holidays. We have been avoiding everyone because it certainly could be the “Rona”. My daughter and I lost smell and taste. I am about 10 days in so on the back side. It just felt like a crappy head cold.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Merry Christmas

Happy New Year

OMG, it’s December?

Where does time go? While sometimes it seems to be crawling, and then it is December.

I finished something (s)

So, I made this quilt for my Aunt. She is the only relative I have left and I think she will be turning 95. It is scraps, but to me, it felt like all my past projects going into something for her. It went together quickly and looks not too bad. I quilted with my heart ruler and meandering swirls. I hope to get it to her soon. It seems unlikely before Christmas, but hopefully soon after. She lives in Michigan, so only about a 3-hour drive for me.

I put pink and white flowered minky on the back so it would be soft. While I like the softness of minky for some quilts, I don’t find it easy to work with and it is messy. I have done it on my domestic machine and it was super hard to move around. My shoulders hurt for days. So, this one I pout on the long arm. It came out OK, I just had to be super careful with stretching. It is also very difficult to see if your tension is correct with Minky on the back. Now that it is complete, I think the tension could have been better, but it will have to do. I try to keep a notebook of all the things I learn along the way as well as how many bobbins are used and stitched. It helps me plan for the next quilt a little better.

So, I also finished all my Santa Chairs. I have a full set now. Makes me happy every time I look over at them.

Thank you to my daughter who always begrudgingly holds up my quilts for photos.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Santa Chairs!

So many many moons ago, I bought Holiday chair covers. They were made out of very thin felt-like material. I used them nearly every year. Well, they are finally worn out, so I made a pattern and started making new ones. I chose fleece. I am hoping that will stop fingers from going through them every time a chair was moved. I actually saved/used the pom poms from the old ones. For some odd reason, they make me happy. Only problem I have is tht I did not but enough of the red fleece to make six, so hoping that I can match it fairly closely. I will be able to wash these if needed. The other could not be washed. They would have never made it through the washing machine.

If you can, I suggest trying this….

While I was at my mini-retreat, my Friend Lynn introduced me to these OLFA ENDURANCE blades. I am usually a skeptic, especially about blades. Wow, do these make a difference. She had one in her rotary cutter and when I used it, I was not even aware that I was cutting anything. There was no resistance and it was completely silent. The best thing for me or anyone with arthritis or anything in their hands. They can be pricey, but I have seen them on sale. Lynn had been using hers for a while and it was still as sharp as ever. My package is clearly empty because I bought one and it is wonderful!

Dog Beds for Hospets

There is a local group in my area called Hospets. They support Seniors with Pets. They help them with appointments etc so that they don’t have to choose between their pet and something else. I donated 5 dog beds to them to pass out as they see fit. I will continue to donate dog beds to them. They were very grateful. My daughter and I are also sponsoring a senior for the holidays. They submit wish lists for themselves and their pet and you help them out with items from their list. Our person is local to us and has a pet bird.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Retreating :)

What Fun!

Lynn and I headed off to Ohio Country for a mini-retreat. We stayed at the historic Millersburg hotel! It has such a history. It also has quilts hanging everywhere.

What did I do?

I made the ghost Blocks. There was a lot of swearing involved. I don’t really care for stitch and flip, and that was necessary. Since there were only 5 blocks in this runner, I suffered through it and swore a lot. It is cute.I also worked on my holiday placemats. I am hopeful that I can get them done.

Not perfect, but tolerable.

Guild Retreat

We are planning a retreat for our guild and hope to have it here. They have a large room that we can use free of charge. It is a beautiful room with high ceilings and exposed brick walls. We are hoping for the first weekend in March. We are hoping we will have 15-20 ladies from our guild join. Something to look forward to in early Spring. I am sure I will need it by then.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

What the Heck am I doing?

Good question. I sometimes wonder what I am doing. I quilted, on my domestic, my scrabble dog wall hanging. I needed something to do that would take me a bit of uninterupted time. Sometimes when I have a lot on my mind (or just anxiety in general), I want to work on something that requires my undivided attention. This has been basted and staring at me for quite a few weeks. I figured it would take me 1-1.5 hours after I got set up to complete the quilting. I was not far off the mark.

I did find, that since I don’t really quilt much on my domestic machine, except straight line, that I now suck at free motion quilting on it. It is possible that it is because iut requires strenght (shoulders, I think) that I don’t have and may never have. I used my dog boine ruler. Not sure why they are called rulers, they don’t actually measure anything. I did take a photo of one of the better-looking areas (LOL).

Anxiety, who me?

Haha. Crazy anxiety. That’s me. I am a worrier by nature., I think I got that from my mother. She was a worrier. So anxiety is just an added bonus.

What causes me to be insane? Well, last week on Wednesday, I woke up unable to walk. Awesome. The absolute most severe pain I have ever felt, everytime I put my right leg down. Words can not describe this pain. Thinking my post (artificail knee) had finally come loose after 25 years, I had my daughter drive me to the ER. Nope, knee not loose. Not much we can help you with, go to your ortho. Six weeks wait. Try someone local. Eww, not what I usually want to do, living outside the city. The local doctors in the rural world have always scared me. But, they agreed to see me that day. I was pleasantly surprised. Young Doc, who told me that my pain was likely coming from my hip (even though it did not hurt). Told me the answer was to shoot up the aggravated knee with medication and then come back on Friday and have the same thing done to my hip. It worked! However, now, I can add hip arthritits and all the goodies that come with that to my crappy resume. I also now keep crutches by the door of the bedroom in case it happens again. This is one of the many reasons I am half crazy. What lovely thing will I wake up with tomorrow? If this is getting old, I have a strong understanding of why people fight it.

Fun Coming!

Fun is needed. Going on a mini-retreat in Amish country in Ohio, with my quilting partner in crime Lynn and maybe one other person (hopefully Sharon comes because she seems like she would be fun). We are staying at a historic hotel. Not only is it a retreat center, but they have ghost hunts. LOL. It is has Victorian Era Decor and past presidents have stayed there (Grover Cleveland). Hotel Millersburg is in the heart of Ohio Amish Country (AKA lots of quilt shops). Photos to come….

So, I am collecting up my projects that I will work on and looking forward to the great escape.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

A little bit of work….

So, I managed to get the quilt for my Aunt on the long arm. I am about 2/3rds finished. I have to do a bit and walk away and come back to it. Too much standing kills me. I am getting there. Before, I just could not do it. Now I can do some. I’ll take it. I am using my heart ruler and curly q’s. Initially when I started, It would not sew. Screwed around for an hour did some research and figured out I put my new needle in backwards. Duh.

Quilt Police – So, I saw this photo on Facebook and had a good laugh. I am super critical of myself, always. The quilt police would have a hay day with binding like that. Given the true purpose of this quilt, that should never matter. It was made to keep someone warm and I am sure it did a fabulous job at it.

I follow a lot of groups on Facebook and Instagram, mostly for the pictures of quilts. I am sometimes shocked and appalled at things people say to fellow quilters. “Never ever by fabric at JoAnne’s or Wal-Mart. It is horrible quality”. There are quilters out there that can not afford to buy $12-$15 per yard fabric. Our ancestors, including my grandmother, used old coats, clothes, and feed sacks. Quilts were very often made out of repurposed items.

I was once told that the Kona that JoAnn’s was not the same Kona sold at quilt shops. Honestly, not true. I have bought some at both. Each raveled equally as bad. They felt the same. I do not believe the thread count was different. So, yep I used my 60% off Coupon to buy a large piece of Kona at JoAnn’s over the weekend.

I have also purchased Michael Miller fabrics at Wal-Mart. You just have to look.

Someone is wearing a quilt – I did not watch the met gala, but did see photos of this person wearing a quilt. Thought it was amusing. Turns out that this quilt was actually made by someone’s mother. The photo on the right is of it on a bed at their home. It wound up at a thrift shop and was purchased by a designer to make this…..whatever it is called.

The designer did end up contacting the lady who’s mother made the quilt once it came to light. She just wanted everyone to know that her mother made the quilt that this gentleman wore (rapper I think…can’t remember his name).

So, you never know where a quilt that you make might end up! Who would have thought the red carpet……

Senior Moment – Literally. No, not me (although I have plenty). My daughter is a senior this year., Hard to believe. We had Senior Photo’s taken recently. I cried the night before so I would not do it during the photo shoot. Our Photographer took 350 Photos. Crazy. Pretty sure I had one pose when I was a Senior and that was it. I do like the one with the waterfall, but I have not seen them all yet. That looks like my girl the most.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

Seriously…September is over?

You have got to be kidding. September is over this week? Where is time going? I think there is a black hole and all my time is being sucked into it.

I did get some stuff done. The pictured quilt top I have made for my Aunt. I plan to go and visit her this year. She is 94 (I think). She was always one of my favorite people. She is the only living relative (among the aunts and uncles) that I have left. I remember all the trophies for golf she had in her living room as a kid. They also had a pool table and a bar downstairs where we would often play. She was the oldest of my grandparents children. My Dad was the “middle child” Maybe that is why he understood me so well. While this is a scrappy quilt, as I made it I remembered all the other quilts and projects these fabrics were a part of. I think I will put minky on the back so it is nice and soft for her.

I did get other things done. I bound a couple of of table toppers. I also finished up that binding last night on my “Plaid Challenge quilt” for a competition for my guild. I wont show it yet. The contest is the first week of December. Everyone that wanted to participate had to provide a yard of plaid fabric and $$$. I don’t remember how much money. The money will be divided between the top three quilts, I believe. Figuring out what to do with a bunch of weird plaid fabrics was challenging.

On the Neck Surgery recovery…. Still have issues. I may always have issues. Have managed to lose about 30 pounds. I’ll take it. I can walk over 1/2 mile, but some days I can’t do that at all. Need to figure out how to live with changes. Ugh.

Need to get my Aunt’s quilt pin basted.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting

and then there is more…..

This is the cutest darn thing…… but I think anything with dogs is cute. I am sure you know, I am a crazy dog lady. I love my puppies. My daughter and I were at the quilt store and I saw the “scrabble” panel. I bought it. These are all my dogs including the ones that are waiting for me over the rainbow bridge. The ones not here with me have a little gold halo over the first letter of their name. I frequently dream about my dogs not here. In my dreams we are sitting around the table talking. My Koko is apologizing to Clover for making fun of her for only having three legs. Darby is apologizing for knocking bread off the counter and eating it. They always tell me I am the best Mom.

Now I need to quilt and find a place to hang it.

I enjoyed the three day weekend. It was not long enough. I finished piecing another table runner. I made about a dozen pillow cases for the Guild’s charity.

I finally got my sourdough starter ready to make bread.

It tastes delicious. Came out as planned.

Happy Sewing

Happy Quilting