Thursday, September 29, 2016

Work Day

Poor SeaDoo - stuck on its lift for the winter. Today is a work day, mostly for hubby. He'll mow, weed eat, put the cover on SeaDoo, fix a light fixture, and a few more things. I'll be cleaning inside (and basting hexies).

We grilled out last night - burgers for dinner and smoked sausage for tonight. Looked away for a minute and Cooper scarfed down half the sausages! That dog! Luckily there are enough left for tonight's dinner.

 The weather is a bit cooler today! The high will only be 83 - a big improvement! I'm leashing up the dogs for a walk before I do anything else. 

Go forth and hexie!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Hexies Prepared!

Done! I have a gallon size ziplock bag full of smaller baggies with sets of hexie piece ready to baste at the lake. I've added my glue sticks and scissors (to snip the curves). Eventually I'll keep my featherweight at the lake house for machine sewing there, but I'm not taking it today.

We forged a new trail this morning. Cooper adores walking on trails! So many wonderful smells! We are increasing our walks - this morning's walk was more than 2 miles. Our afternoon walk will be at the lake.

Today's trek took us to the golf course. Lovely morning!

I found a bit of time for quilting feathers. Don't you hate it when this happens? You realize something doesn't feel right. You look on the backside. UGH!!! I've learned to never walk away from a mistake. Rip it out immediately! Rethread machine (yup, that was the problem), and quilt again!

Have a great day!!!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Hexie Fabrics for Today!

Okay, I'll admit it. The only way I could make it through last night's presidential debate was by playing Bingo with hubby. This was my card - I ended up marking 9 of these items during the evening. I won! And that's all I will say about that! 

This morning's walk was fabulous! The geese were out in full force, many swimming in the lake. With hubby along, we went extra far. Through the woods. Across a field. Lots of steps!

And now for fabric! Here are a few I'll be working with. You probably remember this quilt is called Bliss - I'm adding fabrics that represent my favorite things. So I figured I'd add a touch of Auburn fabric. Why not? Haha! Just a touch...

I plan to cut and prepare lots of little packets of curved hexies today - ready to baste at the lake.  And maybe I'll also fit it a bit more feather quilting.

I'm working on Bliss every day until I get the top finished. I promised the full pattern by the end of the year, and you will have it!  It's going to be fun to quilt - can't wait for that part!

Have a great day!

Monday, September 26, 2016


Feathers! Feathers are happening! I traced a circle on the block, quilted the circle, then started making feathers to go to the edge of the square. !!!!!!!! This is fun! 

The first square I quilted took FOREVER! But...with practice comes speed. I'm getting much better and faster at this.  I'm thrilled to know this is doable - not as hard as you might think. 

We went to a volleyball game yesterday only to find out it was away at Texas A&M - haha! Oh well, we had a nice little outing and I spotted this pot of flowers - so pretty!

The afternoon walk with Cooper was beautiful. A gorgeous sunset. A deer just yards away. Ahhh.....

So today's plan... HEXIES!!!! I plan to cut fabric and get organized. We're going to the lake later this week and I'd love to take a pile to baste.

And now it's time to take Cooper for a morning walk. Have a great day!

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Back in the Saddle: Quilt Basting!

Firstly, thanks to all of you for your prayers and support and kind comments - they meant so much! The funeral for hubby's father was Friday morning and was CROWDED. This man had touched so many people during his life - job well done, Clyde!

We will miss him, BUT I have my hubby back home! He's got a bit of a cold now, but we thoroughly enjoyed spending yesterday watching football together.  We grilled out chicken last night - things are slowly getting back to normal.

In the afternoon I basted this quilt sandwich - I do this on the dining room table close to the football game and hubby!

I plan to quilt this with my Bernina using rulers. I have gotten more of them! My LQS (Stitch Therapy) got them for me. I now have the second set along with the feather set. Yes, you can quilt feathers with rulers! And it's not as hard as you might think! I haven't decided if I'll quilt feathers on this quilt, but I do need to practice, so maybe so...

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Quick Post

Hello dear friends,

My father-in-law went to Heaven last night. We are so relieved his suffering is over. I'll be away from the blog for a few days. Your sweet emails and comments have meant the world to me. Thanks for being my friends.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

A Lake Day...

Our family has a lake home on Lake Martin. The water at our home goes down every fall and rises again in the spring. (This is because it is an electric utility lake with a dam.) So every fall we get the pontoon boat and the SeaDoo off their hydraulic lifts, drive them to a boat ramp, and pull them out of the water on their trailers. Then we can park them behind the home and winterize them.

This fall is no different, HOWEVER, it is different. Hubby's been in Birmingham for almost 2 months with his dying father. Together he and I can get the boats out, but I can't do it by myself. The water has already dropped enough that our SeaDoo is stranding on its lift for the winter. UGH! And we felt we only had days left to get the pontoon boat out.

So yesterday I went up to the lake and went through the house gathering the necessary keys.

Trailer key.
Lift mechanism.
SeaDoo key. (To winterize it on the lift)
Boat ramp key.
Boat key.

The keys are in a couple of different locations. Some are labeled well. Some are not. I kept sending Hubby picture like this until I had the correct combination.

Once I had the correct keys, I took them to our favorite boat maintenance guy at the local marina. He's taking care of the rest for us! Yay! He went at lunch time with a buddy and got pontoon out of the water. He'll come back later to winterize the SeaDoo. This was such a big load off of us!

Last night's dinner. Have you tried these? I love that they are protein packed. And they are much more filling and yummy than other low calorie frozen meals. Lately I'm living on salads, egg whites and toast, and an occasional frozen dinner. (And also fruit and spinach smoothies!)

Sorry, no sewing to report. The lake trip took up my time yesterday. Maybe today? We are all on pins and needles, knowing that my FIL will die soon. He's been unconscious for more than a week. He's not in any pain due to morphine. We are praying he will go soon. It's time. We have all begun the grieving process during his 3 week stay at the Hospice facility. Don't mean to get negative here - I try to keep the blog upbeat. But this is life for us at the moment.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Kaffe Fassett Artisan Fabric and New Clothes!

Have you heard about this? Kaffe Fassett has a new line of fabric coming out with Free Spirit!

I had just told a friend recently that I would NOT buy any Kaffe Fassett fabric when I go to Houston. I have plenty. But then I heard this news. Oh dear. May have to have some....

In other randomness...

Last week I placed an order with Stitch Fix - have you heard of this? It's really fun. It's an on-line site for clothing and accessories. It's very simple - you just fill out a quick questionnaire about your style, colors you like or don't like, price you'd be willing to pay (starting with 'as cheap as possible' and on up), size, etc. You pay only $20. You can also include notes such as - don't send me any dresses or pants - just tops, or I don't wear sleeveless tops - anything at all that you think they may want to know.

Then a stylist selects five pieces for you and in days they arrive at your home. I asked for only tops and accessories. My box arrived Saturday! Lucky me - I adore one of the tops and a gorgeous necklace they sent. Here is a closeup of the top I kept along with the necklace. The top is more emerald than shows in the picture. I wish you could feel the fabric - top quality. And the necklace is great too, with a nice weight to it.

  You try everything on, keep what you want, and pile the rest in a prepaid large envelope that they provide and drop it in the mail. You only pay for what you keep and the $20 fee is applied to your purchase. If you want to keep all five pieces you get 25% off the entire purchase.  They also send photos of ideas to style every piece they send - what help for a fashion challenged person like myself!
Here's the style card for the top showing how to style it with jeans and how to dress it up a bit.

I'll definitely be doing this again - it's perfect for people like me who don't enjoy shopping (unless it's for fabric!)

Have a happy Monday...

Saturday, September 17, 2016

A Reader's Quilts!

I'm calling time out on watching football for this quick post. I got the sweetest email yesterday:

Your hexie patterns used in 2 quilts that were exhibited at the AAQG Show this weekend. In my write up I cited you for the free patterns. These quilts were fun & will be in my home from now on. The only pattern I changed was Oct. where I put a spider. Thank you for sharing your patterns. Always your fan, Margaret Berggren

Didn't Margaret do a fantastic job? The nursery quilt has more than 2000 beads on it! Wow!

Am I sewing today? No....Daughter 2 and her hubby are in town! They are spending the weekend here and are on campus getting fired up for the game this evening. I'm hunkered down in front of the TV watching games with the doggies.

Hope you're having a fun day!

Friday, September 16, 2016

A Pillow Day

This is my newest toy. Have you seen these? They are templates (rulers) to use with a domestic sewing machine for free motion quilting. I've had them for a couple of months but just tried them today. (FYI- you do need a special ruler foot for your machine. I got the ruler foot, but also had to buy an adapter so it would fit my machine.)

Different rulers have different purposes. This one is made for clamshells. The other side of the ruler makes even bigger clamshells. I decided this pillow project was the perfect way to play with them.

Pretty good clamshells...especially for my first time!

I used another ruler to do this flower design in the center - the only thing I had to mark was the center of the square.

I think my pillow turned out well and I love it on our screened porch!

There are apparently LOTS of different quilting rulers like this available - more shapes, etc. - I hear there are even hexagon templates!

My kit also came with a ruler to help with stitching in the ditch - yes, it does help so much!

There are lots of Youtube videos that give instructions for using the rulers, along with Craftsy classes. My rulers are made by Westalee. The only problem I had was going through intersections where there were lots of seam allowances underneath. My machine would often get 'stuck' - though after a bit I learned how to fix it - I would raise my ruler foot and move the fabric just a bit so that the needle was away from the bulk.

All in all though, I really love this product line - I plan to get more!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Another Pillow?

I have one lone block leftover from my Allietare quilt. I think it will make a nice pillow for our screened porch, don't you? I need to add some borders to it to make it bigger and then I'll quilt it. Sound like a good mindless project for today!

I didn't sew any yesterday. I did go to the grocery store. And I made bread:

I found the recipe HERE - Honey Oatmeal Walnut Bread. This is a great recipe!!!! I didn't have walnuts so I threw in a handful of pumpkin seeds. And I left off the poppy seeds from the tops of the loaves. I will definitely make this again! FYI, I double the recipe to make 2 loaves...

I am using my Kitchenaid mixer to knead the dough so it's really not hard to make. Also, I'm putting the extra loaf in the freezer until I need it. I store the loaf that I'm using in the refrigerator - you know, store bought bread has preservatives so that it will stay fresh longer - mine does not. I typically eat one slice of bread for breakfast with eggs and then eat another slice with my dinner. Trying to keep it to 2 slices per day (though sometimes I might eat 3...).

Cooper and I are going for a nice long morning walk - better to get him harnessed up. Hope you have a lovely day.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

A Finished Quilt Top!

Oh yes, I did! When you sew all day long, you get a lot done. I decided to stop at 48 blocks and make this a lap quilt - I love lap quilts. It measures 48" by 64" - 6 blocks by 8 blocks.  This was certainly a fast quilt to make! I plan to quilt it myself - soon, I hope!

Typically, Cooper and I take our walk in the late afternoon. But the weather was so pleasant yesterday morning that we took off. And we took a different route by one of the lakes in our neighborhood.

We have 18 miles of trails in our neighborhood, all covered with crushed red brick. There are a few lakes too, stocked with fish for those who want to go fishing.

And then in the late afternoon, we did it again!

Today I don't know exactly what I'll sew. This latest project was perfect for mindless sewing. I'll figure it out. I do know I'm making bread. Remember those 3 loaves a made a few weeks ago? This has become my bread of choice- I eat a slice or two everyday and it's almost gone now. And I'll make a grocery run.

Hope you have a great day!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Mindless Sewing

I took this picture late yesterday afternoon. It truly sums up the way I'm feeling this week. Lots of dark clouds. A storm ahead. A big storm. But there is a glimmer of light and hope. My FIL is still with us, but only for a few days at most.

Because of my mood, I have needed to work on mindless sewing. I'm sure you know what I mean - I need to sew projects that don't need concentration. Because of that I've put aside the thread painting and the hexies this week. I'll get back to them soon.

I did finish making all the edges blocks of Allietare. I also sewed on the inner border. I need more navy fabric for the outer border. Up until now I've made this entire quilt from my stash, so I don't feel bad about buying the border fabric. And a backing. (Yes, I ordered on-line because I didn't feel like getting out.) Sorry, Debbie... (Debbie is my good friend and shop owner, FYI..)

And then there's this. What? Another project? Of course. Haven't you figured out by now that I LOVE to start new projects?  Ha!

The pattern is called Summer at the Beach and you can find it HERE. I'm making this quilt with a friend. Have you ever done that? We are both making the pattern, separately but together. Her quilt will be a Christmas present. Mine? Not sure yet, but it is one of those easy patterns that is fun to sew. And it's mindless. 

Saturday, September 10, 2016

I'm Still Here!

 I'm still here, plugging away. Despite having so many projects in progress, when one of them is close to completion it's all I want to work on. Thus I've been focused on Allietare. Yesterday I finished the blocks. Next I made the parts and pieces for the corner pieces to fill in the edges.

Today I plan to finish the corner pieces and have it ready to sew together! (But then I still need to add the borders...) I really LOVE this quilt and my color choice worked well, I think. 

And why this this little bit of happy come home with me?

I need a bit of happy and I grab it where I can by polishing my nails bright orange or getting a good haircut or buying a bit of Tula Pink.

There is so much sadness with my FIL's impending death. He's been in an in-patient hospice for a couple of weeks. He's really struggling. It's hard to watch and hear about. We hope and pray he will soon go quietly in his sleep.

So if I miss a day or two of blogging here and there, it's probably because I'm looking for some happy.

I hope you find some happy today! I'm going out to lunch with Daughter 1 - lots of happy there!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Thread Painting

I had planned to make hexie yesterday...but you know what they about best laid plans. My new free motion quilting foot was calling me... and so, I started thread painting.

I quickly learned that thread painting is like eating potato chips - I couldn't stop! I still have more blending to do on the part on which I'm working. But I'm pleased with what I've done so far, especially since I've never done this before.

So what's on tap today? I have so many projects and I want to work on ALL of them! Haha! But I'm determined to make some hexies today - so that will come first!!! I hope to get back on my regular schedule next week.

But first I'll finish my cup of tea and eat some breakfast. Did you read that right? Tea???? I've always been a coffee drinker - two cups (at least) each morning. But a few weeks ago, suddenly I just didn't have a taste for it. A couple of days in a row I realized I only drank a few sips and poured it out. So I abruptly switched over to a cup of tea each morning. And I haven't gone back! Weird, huh?

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Parts and Pieces...

This photo is from Sunday - I decided to make the final parts and pieces for Allietare. Then I sewed the parts into block rows. Now I'm ready to make the remaining blocks! Boom!

Yesterday I didn't sew... instead I made a quick trip to Birmingham and back. 

And so...and I'll get back on track! Hexies anyone? 

Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Busy and Productive!

My energy level was back up yesterday. The TV was tuned to FOOTBALL all day! And while watching, I sewed ALL DAY!

I made the finished needlepoint into a pillow. I love to bind quilts with black and white striped binding. So I decided the pillow needed some black and white striped cording - LOVE!

The back of the pillow is a fun Kaffe Fassett print - of course!

Then I pulled out my Allietare project. Yes, I had a bit of help - Mickey insisted on being in my lap...

I made of few of these and then made lots of parts and pieces so I can make more blocks. Bonnie Hunter's pattern called for gold - but I switched it to mint green - I had some mint scraps leftover from the wedding quilt and the bridesmaid quilts - and I like the mint with the orange and navy.

I also did some hand quilting on my Lollypop Trees quilt. WHEW!

I stayed up way too late watching football, so this morning I'm a bit sleepy. I'm going to have a slow start....

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Oh Yes, I Did...

When I was lamenting about not being able to find my free motion quilting foot...someone left a comment about how to find it - simply buy a new one and the old one would then turn up. Haha! So true. But actually a good idea!

I did my research and found that a new one was only $15.99. Well, then. I can swing that! I made sure to pick out an open toe foot so I can clearly see what I'm doing. And so a new foot is on it's way to me as I write this! I'll be thread painting in a few days!

College football is here! We love our football here, especially living in an SEC college town. Our TV will be tuned in to game after game today...while I sew. No worries...I have a large TV in my sewing room. I won't miss a play!

Happy Saturday!

Friday, September 2, 2016

Sorting Yarn...

Since I didn't feel well yesterday, sorting yarn was the perfect task. Though it was not easy. I was hoping bright daylight would help - it did not!

Look at this- I found the light cranberry, the cranberry, and the medium cranberry. There is supposed to be a dark cranberry, but it is nowhere to be found. Instead I ended up with this odd green left over. I had already accounted for all the greens. I may email the company and see if they can send me the dark cranberry which was obviously left out.

Last night I did start stitching just a bit. This is the center of a sunflower.

Last night's meal was inspired by something I saw on the Piece o Cake blog. I warmed some leftover brown rice and topped it with shredded cabbage, green onions, ramen noodles, and peanuts. Then I topped it with some Asian salad dressing. SO GOOD and so easy. I didn't add any chicken, though you could.

It's cloudy today. I'm hoping we get a bit of rain from the outer edges of Hermine. If you look at the weather map it seems to come into east Alabama just a bit. We need the rain.

I'm glad to report that I'm feeling better today! My voice doesn't sound like a foghorn and I have more energy. And so I'll head to the grocery store this morning to pick up some odds and ends and settle in for the rest of the day.

Happy Friday!