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Wednesday, May 23, 2018

A healing quilt and more blocks

A woman I used to work with was recently diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma and I wanted to send her a quilt, to see her through her chemo.  I found this older quilt that has been folded up for years.  I thope she'll like it, even though it's a bit ancient!



The back was pieced from lots of scraps:


I also made a few more of those Bonnie addictive blocks.  That's not the name, of course;  that's what I call them. They take just a little time to prep but piecing them together takes maybe 5 minutes!

It's really fun to fussy cut the centers!  The flying geese fabric is from a friend's stash that she was liquidating about 6 yrs ago.  I'm happy that I can remember the source of some of my fabric, honestly!  Sometimes. ;-)


The center of this block is not pieced;  it's a Cotton and Steel fabric that I picked up in Maine last summer when I was visiting Wendy Reed.  They had it used in a border, which was very dramatic.  I've been waiting hoarding it until I decided what great use to make of it.  I only cut out a small square!


The center raccoon is a Tula Pink fabric.

Isn't this fun??

Back to California tomorrow for weekend babysitting!  YEAH!!

My mom is having a better week. She promised us no more trips to the Dollar Store (she thinks my husband's warnings are much more serious than mine!!  But oh well...whatever works!).   Thanks for your concern!

Monday, May 21, 2018

Sundays are for bindings!

Feeling kind of in-between projects (or unmotivated to get to work on the ones already in progress!), I decided to put the bindings on two quilts.

First of all, I FINALLY put the binding on the Quilt of Valor I made last year.  I even had a variegated red/blue thread that I used to sew down the binding (by machine!).


I think I found the setting online and am definitely pleased with how it turned out.  I've never met a star I didn't love anyway!!!

I'm mailing it off to Kevin the Quilter since he is the master of Quilts of Valor.


I also put on the binding on my little May Mini.  I'm going to sew that down by hand since I don't have any gold thread up here at the cabin... will probably do it on the car ride back to California on Thursday.


Yesterday I also made a couple of Bonnie's little addictive blocks! They really are fun and go together so quickly.  I love how they look laid out next to each other.
  


I love how this one turned out.  The center is, of course, an old French General fabric I've had.  The black filagree is from a very old pack of FQs I got but never used.  I fussy cut the pieces...

Here is how some of them are looking together!



Saturday, May 19, 2018

Finally, a hike!!

My husband and I have been wanting to go for a hike forever but every time we've been at the cabin, there have been issues relating to the mom to make it impossible.

Today we decided was the day we were going.  We hiked about 7 miles to these beautiful falls called Tumalo Falls.

But first you have to enjoy this sign we saw along the trail!  I think it's a life lesson:  look, listen and smile!!





Max was a real trooper.  he did wade into the creek once which was a bit deeper than we thought but he managed to scamper out.  He will need to be groomed.  Dusty!!

I have done a little sewing this week and made my May mini!  I used 2" bow ties that I made years ago and had collected in a zip lock baggie.  There are still many more but I'm happy with how this turned out.  Now just need to quilt it
.

Next project is to go back to the triangle gatherings and work on my setting, which I'm still stumped on.  I suppose I could use only some of the  98 blocks in a quilt and use a couple of different settings. What a concept!!

My mom is not doing great.  I was told on Thursday that she wandered away from the facility and got lost.  She got it into her head that she had to go to the Dollar Store down the street (mind you, this street is a VERY busy thoroughfare!).  She doesn't believe that she got lost, denies getting confused and continues to lament her loss of independence (I completely understand but still... she had no alternatives!)  Oh and the first trip she made to the Dollar Store was after she went to Ace Hardware and got a complete stranger to give her a ride to the Dollar Store (no idea why...).  

Things are not looking great.  I did give her an id bracelet I'd ordered for her, just in case she wanders off again.  I am keeping my fingers crossed that she remembers that she shouldn't go out the front door.  It's still terribly sad, as I'm sure so many of you know from personal experience.  Getting old (she's 90) is tough and dementia is even more frustrating.  Thanks for listening...

Back to my machine!

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Amazing pin cushion

I recently saw someone post about receiving this amazing pin cushion on Facebook.  Oh, I love the internet!

I did a little research, found out who makes them and ordered one.  It's like a little dress form!  I got to pick out the fabrics and trim!!  Love it!



This is a card for  Cindy Thompson, who made it for me.  


One of the first places I wanted to go in Bend was to Tuesday Morning, which I had heard was selling Benartex jelly rolls and charm squares.  I'm hoping it's "authentic" fabric, although I only bought two packages of charm squares (needed for Ryan!!)



Over the weekend, I read an article in the NY Times where they were reprinting outstanding  college application essays from high school seniors around the country.  I read this one and thought you'd enjoy it.  Hopefully you can read it.  This student reminisced about her grandmother's quilting.  It is very charming, I think.  Very impressive for an 18 yr old!


I've been working on using a bag of bow ties I made years ago.  My May mini!  Wendy Reed, take note!  Hope to  show you in a couple of days.


Sunday, May 13, 2018

Happy Mother's Day

This seems like the perfect day for me to finally make a post on my blog.  Who knows where the time has gone, in a good way?  I have complaints (well, other than the usual ones...).

We had a fabulous day.  We had our grandkids over the weekend.  My grandson Ryan, who is 8, has been sewing up a storm.  He finished a bag for my daughter's friend this weekend (a project he's been working on for weeks).  He used charm squares, variegated threads, both my Juki and Janome, adorable cherry fabric for the lining.  I told him to make sure to get a picture of him with the woman and the bag!  [note we took the grandkids back to their house in SF;  when I came home, I found my little iron FACE DOWN on my pressing table.   Ryan needs to remember to TURN OFF the IRON!!) VBG

Here is a picture of me, my husband and our 4 grandkids.  Who wouldn't feel blessed??  Little Emma hates being in pictures... Can you tell?? vbg  
And, by the way, this is what San Francisco looks like.  And can you stand little Eli's tummy?? 


What have I been doing?  I finally finished ALL the 98 triangle gathering blocks!  YEAH!  Now to set them... Note that I didn't have an iron out to press these (I was in Hawaii for a quick trip and didn't bother with pressing)...   Read on for the story of my bobbin case breaking... UGH





What an enormous project.  Who knew, when I started, that it'd be 98 blocks?  My blocks are an odd size... 7" finished!!   I have gone back and forth on settings.  My latest idea is to just sash them and use bright setting squares.  Stay tuned.

so the story of my machine in Hawaii?
I bought a machine 10 yrs ago when we remodeled this condo that we purchased.  I only use it once every six months, when I go but every time it purrs.  This time, for an unknown reason, I decided it was time ti clean it and I took apart the bobbin area.  Went to put it back together and the bobbin case wouldn't stay put.  Thank goodness for the internet, Youtube and Google!  I realized my bobbin case was missing the little hook that slips into the little opening.  I was so lucky that I found one in Lihue and was able to replace it for all of $2.75.  I was ready to buy a machine and return in before I left!

The good news is that I found out that my little Kenmore machine, Less than $150, was made by Janome!! WHOOHOO.  Of course I didn't take a picture of the broken part.  But who ever heard of a bobbin case BREAKING???!!!

Anyway, we had a great mother's day.  I hope you did too, however you choose to celebrate it.  Even caring for animals makes you a mom, in my book!  (or a husband, for that matter!!).

Promise to post more the rest of the month.  Heading up to the cabin tomorrow for about 10 days...need to check on my mom!


Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Signs of spring

I was recently going to get my grandkids and had a few extra hours so I stopped in at a beautiful garden I belong to, Filoli, and took some wonderful pictures of the gorgeous flowers (and peacock).  I almost missed the tulips.  I think the colors are so inspiring!

They also had a display of arrangements made by students in their program.  I was totally overwhelmed with the job these students did.





















Monday, April 23, 2018

And the winner is....

Thanks for all the great comments on what the highlight of your week was!  My random number generator chose:

HOLLY FIELD

as the winner of the Betsy Chutchian book.  Please send me your email address so I can ship it off to you right away!

We had a very busy family weekend;  my grandson had his first communion on Saturday morning (my very first event of this sort) and we had all our kids and  almost all the grandkids together for brunch afterwards at my daughters house in SF!  Little Eli was back at their house with my daughter in law's parents who are visiting from Germany this week.  My son turned 30 and they had a little party for him, too.  This pictures includes my son (left) and my two daughters (standing in the back).  My kids have grown up and it's now a totally new generation, watching the grandkids do what we watched our own kids too. Talk about feeling old!

On a sewing front,  I am back to sewing the triangle gatherings together and am starting to think about a setting.  There are just a few more to go!


I tried using Bonnie's new Quiltmaker block but I think it's too dominant:


Then I went with the original idea I had, to put them with hourglass blocks of very bright colors.  Still not loving it.



Then I went with pulling lots of different fabrics from my stash for possible sashing strips-- not sure I'm loving any of them, yet.

I've seen some with sashing strips-- someone has made sashing using 2 or 3 different strips of fabric, often two lights and a dark.  That just seems like a heck of a lot of work and I'm not sure what colors I'd like for the sashing...

I also played with dark corner stones...

What would you do with 98 different blocks, all finishing at 7"???
I'm really perplexed... and now my sewing room is a disaster, by my having pulled so many different things to try.


Let me show you what I did complete and am happy with... I made another Hawaiian bag, for an auction in Kauai.  Two sides to every bag, of course!

Just FYI... I think I ran out of the x-rated Santa fabric!

coming on my blog this week will be some gorgeous flowers from Filoli Gardens and also the mini quilt show from First Friday in Bend at Quilt Works...

Have a great week!



Wednesday, April 18, 2018

GIVEAWAY time

I think it's time for a GIVEAWAY!!

I'm in a good mood this week (actually I am almost always in a good mood!) but particularly good this week!  Why?

1--had the 3 grandkids this weekend
2--had the littlest #4 grandson on Monday
3--had the littlest #4 grandson again this morning
(note I am not a very good sharer of grandchildren--my daughter in law is from Germany and her parents come frequently-- they are coming on Friday for about a week and when they're in town... I'm persona non-grata!!)
4--I sold my mom's car this week (the last piece of deconstructing her California life is now complete)
5--Claire came over to sew with me and I am closer to getting my triangle gatherings all done
6--made a Hawaiian bag for an auction
7--my youngest son is going to be 30 (how did that happen) on Saturday

8-- most importantly:  LIFE IS GOOD!!!

So, in honor of life being so great, I'm giving away a book I just realized I have two copies of:

Classic & Heirloom Quilts, by Betsy Chutchian
Eight 1800s inspired quilts in three sizes.


How to win?
Please leave me a comment detailing one great thing about your week...
please be sure to include your email address
I'll draw a winner on FRIDAY!!!

xxxxs,
Randy

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

My doll quilt

I received in mail a most adorable little doll quilt made in England and sent to me by Sue Phillips!  It's really sweet and she hand quilted it, too.  She enclosed two great Jo Morton fabrics and some chocolate, which you'll note is not in the picture...hmmm, where could it have gone?? VBG



This little swap is such a fun project to participate in.  Thanks to Lori (humblequilts) for organizing it once again!

I'm happy to also report that on our drive to and from Oregon, I worked on my  Primitive Gatherings freebie project from last summer.  I figured it's time to get it done (the main project I did is awaiting a million tiny half square triangles to be sewn and attached...).  I think I've shown you some of the blocks.  Here are the other ones I've done.  Hopefully not duplicates... You'll note that my applique is pretty rudimentary. Kind of primitive but I'm not really bothered by it.  No one will notice when it's all together.

  
No, the tree is not supposed to be bent over...but it was windy in this neighborhood.  (Hahaha).


Roof is crooked and chimney isn't built onto the roof very well!  VBG


The pieces are so tiny that I lost a window in transit... the last two windows (which were missing) need to be sewn down, next time I take up the project!


I think these bushes need something (some texture?)... and the roof is similarly crooked.  What terrible carpentry!!

I have 7 or 8 sewn down;  two more have been prepped and ready for sewing.  That means only two more to prep and sew.

The finishing pack is just adorable.  It will be an adorable quilt when done.  And I'm almost ready to start thinking about putting it together...
Wool applique is really fun and I enjoy playing around with different threads that don't always match.  It's just a big bag of things to shlep around.  Not a project to take on a plane, that's for sure.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Doll quilt swap sent and received etc

I participated in Lori's (humblequilts) doll quilt swap and managed to get my quilt in the mail and got it delivered weeks before the deadline.  Amazing for me!  I did forget to snap a picture and enclose a card...but heck... I got it done.

Robin Boggan was kind enough to send me a picture of the quilt.  I'm delighted that she liked it. Sewing thimbles is no small feat, especially for someone as inaccurate as me.  And sewing small ones?  Don't look too closely!! I made this using the Primitive Gatherings tiny template. They might be 2".    Since then I've bought different templates for different size thimbles.  I even bought a die for my Accuquilt but have yet to use it.  I think thimbles are really fun to look at and I've seen some awesome quilts.  I think I recently saw one using homespuns, which was awesome.




This is also going to be my April mini-, per Wendy Reed (ConstantQuilter)!  She said it was ok and that's good enough for me!

I also finished my basket quilt (Bea et Cecile Quiltalong) and because of the deadline today (and the fact that I forgot to take it with me to Oregon to quilt), I took it to a new local longarm quilter nearby and he did a fabulous job!  I'm very pleased with the result.  At first, I wasn't really fond of it.  But now I'm liking it!  I think I'll add it to my wall of small quilts!



And  for the backing, I used up some fabric and blocks I hadn't been very fond of either.  In hindsight, I could've made the quilt smaller and included the baskets on the back in the total calculation (needed 16 blocks) but it's ok...


Remember I made little Emma the Frozen quilt?  Well, little Jack (4) wanted a Thomas quilt so I found some fabric at Joann's in Bend and we worked on it this weekend.  Little Jack sat next to me at my machine; I had the foot pedal on a stool and he'd operate the pedal as well as the scissor button.  Now I just need to quilt it.  I am happy with the pattern.  I found it in a book of Nine-Patch quilts.  Seemed really simple.  Blocks are 6" finished.



This is a week with lots of grandkid time.  I am actually getting little Eli for most of tomorrow (first time!!) as his mom is going to run some errands and will drop him off in the morning!  We had the 3 this weekend;  I wound up keeping the oldest one (8) because the principal at his school passed away from cancer this week and he's having trouble understanding this so I offered to have him stay with me (school is out tomorrow because of the funeral)-- he and I are going to make a quilt for her family!  He's very excited to be the only one here.


Tuesday, April 10, 2018

A little bit of progress

Remember that hourglass quilt I've been working on?  It's the one that Bonnie Hunter did for a leaders/ender project a few years ago?

Well, when Bonnie was visiting me recently I showed her my project.  I had changed her colors but she was excited about it, as was I.

I brought it up to Oregon and finally got another border on.  of course I hadn't realized that I sewed on one small side before sewing a whole extra set of hourglass blocks.  Oh well.




My husband and I have spent the past 10 days at our cabin in Oregon, trying to take care of honeydo type things and checking on my mom.  Yesterday, finally, it warmed up, for the first time.  Enough for us to sit out on my new patio furniture and enjoy the sunset (yes, and a cocktail).  Here's Max sitting with us!
 

I had forgotten Max's arthritis medicine in California, as I told you.  We figured it would be smart to get a local vet here in Sunriver so today I took him for his first appointment.  
What a difference!  The new (and very young) vet checked everything;  he's had a small lump back by his left leg and she aspirated it -- called me later to tell me it's a type of mast cell cancer which needs to be removed.  OMG.  Aren't we happy that we took him to another vet and got another opinion?  Our usual vet had felt it and was indifferent as to whether we removed it or not.  Never mentioned the possibility of it being cancer nor suggested we test it.  So now we need to decide if we're going to do it in California or up in Sunriver.  I'm inclined to go with the new vet in Oregon...

Anyway, now there's something else to be concerned with.  My poor Max. ;-(