Monday, August 31, 2009

Busy FUN week!

This was one of those weeks that is almost too busy! Wednesday started with drawing class and an afternoon of dominos! I'm telling you, retirement isn't for sissies! :>

Thursday was "Projects Anonymous" which is an all day 'work on an UFO' day. P and K run it and we have such fun. They actually make a wonderful pin cushion every month for a door prize! Everyone's happy to give you praise or an opinion as needed!! I worked on more and more plaid bear paws. Even I am getting tired of half-square triangles. This UFO started at a fall retreat back in Nebraska. The pattern was in a "Quilt it for Christmas" magazine. So cute - 9 blocks but I wanted it bigger [of course] ... 16 might be good, but then decided to make it bed size - yep, 25 blocks. Well, if only I had finished it before - because when we moved here we got a new bed - one of those really high king-size sets so now the count is 36!!! If I don't finish it soon it will be big enough to cover the house!!

Friday was quilting day at Bayshore. Again a full day of quilting and conversation.

But Saturday ... what a beautiful day! Corvallis had a "Quilts in the Garden" house tour. They have it every other year and they couldn't have ordered a more perfect day. Seven gardens, each different with gorgeous quilts hanging about everywhere! S, J and I took off from the coast - visited, took alot of pictures and thoroughly enjoyed the day. When we got back to the coast it was foggy, windy and cold - so there wasn't even any guilt over missing the day at home!

We saw beautiful flowers, figs, all sorts of veggies, plums, apples, pears and these peaches. We had to remind ourselves that it wasn't 'u pick'. We were nervous that we wouldn't get to all the houses - after we spent an hour at the first one! So we didn't eat lunch until 4:30 when we were done with the tour.

Sunday - off to Portland to babysit today and tomorrow. I did sneak out to a quilt store this afternoon during nap and bought Jo Morton's latest book "Vintage Journey" and I bought a few fabrics to go with it!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

What a great book!!!

Has everyone else read this wonderful book? I've read reviews and thought, okay, I'll get that one someday. Well, today was the day. The library got it from another library for me. I picked it up at 1 pm. I opened it at 3:45 pm and I finished it at 8!!! I was spellbound - I never put it down. Do you know how long it's been since a book gripped me like that??? Forever!!!

So - tell me what you think/thought of it. It's okay - you don't have to love it - we can still be friends!!! Just let me know!

And J? I certainly highly recommend it for the book club!!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Oops - time flies!!!

It took me longer to get my energy back after that bout with the flu than I expected. We also went up to babysit for FIVE days for the kids - and that took alot out of us! But mainly - I have no excuse! Just bumming around and not blogging about it! Sad, but true.

I'm running a 'Back to School Block Exchange' at our guild - here's my newsletter writeup to attract participants:

Celebrate the return to school with an “I SPY” alphabet block exchange. Each letter is ‘fusible appliqu├ęd’ in fabric that has pictures of something that starts with that letter – think ‘A is for apple.’ Make 26 of one letter, fuse each to a 7” beige background square – no sewing involved! Everyone can finish their complete alphabet how they choose. Hand or machine stitched. And then the fun is just beginning – because you can use them anyway you want to! Any design with a 6 inch square in it will work. Churn Dash; Ohio Star; Square in a Square; Snowball … or just add sashing … the choice is yours.

Hope it encourages people to join up! The board thought I'd have enough participants for TWO alphabets ... we'll see.

It was funny - I knew I had to present the idea to the board ... so I wrote up the 7 handouts, supplies needed, suggested motifs for each letter; and a complete alphabet scaled to the correct size. I made an entire alphabet of fused fabrics; brought stacks of fabrics that were good examples of both the beige backgrounds and the featured fabrics ... made a block and cut out the square of fabric ... I was so nervous about doing the presentation! I was a wreck!

But that's what I thought I needed to have done ... in the same meeting 3 ideas for a challenge project were brought up. They just discussed how it would run - no samples or anything! By the time I got everything set up - I'd made my alphabet - so if they didn't accept it - well, I was well on my way to my own quilt!!! But they accepted it and it starts in 3 weeks!!! Good thing I was totally ready - mostly!

If anyone has any tips for running exchanges ... all suggestions will be welcome.

On a sad note: My birth sister MV died this week. She was the kindest, most down to earth woman I have ever known. Although she'd been sick for many years she was still connected to life. Always interested in what you and your kids and your grandchildren were up to. Loved stories about the everyday stuff, delighted in pictures, never one to complain about her lot in life. She will be missed. Rest in Peace, Dear Heart.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Glad that's over!!!

Not a wonderful birthday this year ... I was recovering from stomache flu / food poisoning(?) Don't know which one - just glad it's over! We've been here for over a year isn't it time for 'kindergarten syndrome' to be over?? Poor DD got it too - hard to be sick with 2 kids under 3! At least here DH and I could moan in relative peace!! Enuf said!

I did get to breeze thru the quilt show Saturday afternoon - it looked marvelous! One gal takes pictures of all the entries, puts them on a disk and then sells it to us - I'm relying on her this year - didn't even take my camera! I entered two of my favorite quilts: 'All around the town - Boydville that is!' and 'That kaliedoscope thing you've been working on for years'

'All around the town ...' was a BOM that 3 friends and I worked on. M was making it for a shop sample. At first I was jealous that she was getting 'paid' for making it, but as I personalized mine with 'not in the pattern' details I was glad I was just doing it for myself. Details include our dear dog Pepper on a corner with her red collar on and Thunder, the horse I owned during high school. I love the whale weather vane looming over everything like the cloudy days do out here on the coast! A forewarning that we didn't heed!

'That kaliedoscope thing ...' was a project for a decade! Yep, you heard me right! Scrappy wasn't as accepted back then, but I persevered! Yes, we saw scrappy in antique quilts - but those weren't highly regarded then either. At least not by us ordinary folk. Thank you Gerald Roy!!!

Jinny Beyer was hot and everything was overmatched and perfect. [Kind of like the complete fabric collection quilts now. Is it just me or do they look a little 'inbred'!?!]

I machine pieced halves of the blocks and then hand pieced that center seam - determined to make the pattern spin after all this work. So I would have a blue block, a red block and a brown block [for example] in my bag and I would lovingly pat them and explain they were all going into the same quilt and friends would pat me on the shoulder and say, basically, "okay, I'm sure??? it will be fine." Eye-rolling behind my back.

But I love it and they did all blend. Ahem ... I told you so!!!! Oh, my - that felt good! LOL!