Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Bologna Moment Brought to you by Puppy-Dad

Every morning, Felix (Puppy-Dad) gives out doggie vitamins and glucosamine tablets (which are for improved joint health) to our dogs. And then they get their bologna treat for the day, one slice each, cut up into pie-shaped wedges. Raven is very gentle; Luau is very greedy. If the "Bologna Moment" is late for some reason, we sure do hear about it from Luau, who becomes very vocal.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Whatcha Got in the Shoebox?

As I plug along on various projects, it is challenging to keep them all together neatly. I have discovered that shoeboxes and empty Raman noodle boxes are great. I like to stack 10 units, such as a four-patch, and then offset the next ten, until I have a stack of 50 units. Then they go into the shoebox!

These are my 450 four-patches for Blue Ridge Beauty. I have more fun making the 4-patches than the HST's and I need 450 of those too.

On the Half Square Triangles, I have about 250 done, so I still have a ways to go!

The patchworking is very theraputic today.  I await the phone call to see how my eleven year old  little yellow lab mix named Luau, fared at the surgery to diagnose her anal tumor. We do not know if it is cancerous or perhaps just an infected anal gland. The growth is the size of a golf ball and very hard. Luau has been having a very difficult time passing her stools for about 2 or 3 weeks, but I did not understand why. Perhaps I should have gotten her to the vet sooner. I did learn that dogs can benefit from a Metamucil-type of preparation if it is sprinkled into their kibble and mixed with water.
The waiting and not knowing is hard.

Thank you so much for your support, it means a lot right now. It is an inoperable cancer that will take her life. She is not yet in pain, so I have chosen to bring her home for a few weeks of last swims in the lake, lots of bologna treats, and tons of cuddling before I take her back to be put to sleep peacefully. I owe her that.
All our life is only borrowed from God. I can just keep reminding myself that I had 11 wonderful years with Luau. It is hard to not be sad.

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Floral Totebag

The Saturday the 6th workshop was a big success! You may recall that I had already put together my 5" floral patches from my swap group. So I was ahead of the group.

As I drove to the workshop, my 1989 Mercury Marquis began acting strangely, with the check engine light that came on as well as the amp light and then I lost my power assist on my steering. There on route 11, a narrow winding road with no apron and cars behind me, I chose to drive on about half a mile to get to The Wise Owl Restaurant to be able to call home. I do not use a cell phone.

Husband Wonderful, Felix, and his trusty sidekick, Matthew, came immediately to rescue me. It was a glorious sunny day and when they popped my hood, they saw the broken fan belt that was the culprit. The guys loaded me and "Scottie", my Singer Featherweight, into the Mountaineer and drove me straight to the class. By the time I got there, I was an hour late, but was just even with the group because I had worked ahead.

My totebag was made from the florals in my swap group online and I was careful to chose a dark piece of yardage for the handles to not show the dirt when using the tote. Also, I made the deepest part of the lining a very light color to be able to see the bottom of the bag when rummaging around in there. I love the way it turned out!

By the way, by the time that the workshop had ended, Husband Wonderful had the car repaired and running like a top again! Yippee!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Long Lost Chum

It amazes me that sometimes things just fall together the way they should! In January 2010, I posted my first quilt on because I had not yet started this blog. I had forgotten all about it.
But as chance would have it, my oldest dear childhood chum was cruising the net looking for eye-candy quilts and popped into Quilt-Pictures. When she saw my name, she left a comment which was sent to my email. OMG! I was SO surprised! We hadn't kept up and I had not heard from her in 40 years. As luck would have it, we were able to meet at her daughter's farm in the next town over from me for a wonderful luncheon, all home-cooked. It was the most fabulous reunion!

A few days ago, I pulled into my wonderful paved driveway that I use as my layout area for quilts, and saw that we had a visitor in the orchard. This doe was quite large and had a fawn with her, but the little one ran for cover.  She stayed long enough for me to go into the house to fetch the camera to take these:

She sure did like stealing those apples! Felix was furious and chased her off to protect his crop. I got a big laugh out of it all.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


To show the process of what I have been doing since mid-June, here are the photos of my red scrappy top which was inspired by Nann Blaine Hilyard. She did scrappy pinwheels with reds and attributed her inspiration to Bonnie Hunter. I guess that makes this a second generation scrappy interpretation! LOL!
You may recall seeing this picture of the first 12 1/2" blocks to land on my design chair:

I had started out just using 2 1/2" squares cut from scraps (made when cutting for my swaps) as my leader/ender. But that cute little pile of scrappy 4-patches just grew and grew as I was working on Bonnie Hunter's mystery, Roll, Roll, Cotton Boll, (which I named Cotton Candy). I was itching to make something wonderful with the 4-patches!
Then I spotted Nann's idea of alternating pinwheels with red patches. I loved her quilt! And I had lots of reds, too. I used 4 1/2" squares of scrappy reds to assemble the 4-patches into a giant 9-patch block. I worked on other stuff, too. My goal was to make one or two of the big blocks per day until I had a total of 36 blocks. Being true scrappy, some of the lights in the 4-patches were kinda mediums. That made my first attempts at a placement layout full of errors. This was on the deck and was disturbed by breezes!

Sorry for the interruption from my helper, Raven! She believes in a big roll and stretch and yawn after her sunbath.

I finished sewing the last few blocks this week and waited for a calm, no-wind time to make my final arrangement on  my driveway.

This was done at dusk on a swelteringly muggy August 1st night. After I got all the blocks arranged the way that I wanted them, I pinned numbered slips of paper, one through six, on each of the first blocks in the far left-hand column. Then I carefully picked up each row across placing the first block on top of the next one and so on. Then I had six stacks of six block rows in order. That's what keeps me on the right track when I sew them together. Here I am picking up the stacks. Geez, it's a workout!

Then this week, I worked on sewing the blocks together into rows. I leave the little marker paper right on there as I assemble the blocks because I'm gonna NEED those for when I do the rows. In fact, I like to leave them on until I take the top to the longarmer because it helps me to orient the top for when I do borders, too.

Today, I got the center of the top sewn and pressed. Here is the picture of the top in direct sunlight with the shadow of my head! LOL! I measured the top and it is 73"X73". Too tired to do the borders today, but I'm thrilled with my progress and I love the way the quilt is coming out!

Monday, August 1, 2011

What a Clothesline SHOULD Look Like!

This is my idea of what a clothesline SHOULD look like; all neat Fat Quarters that have just been prewashed in Orvus and are now hanging out in a neat row! LOL! No men's undershirts, no bras and panties, no jeans, just FQ's, well, maybe some pretty yardage,too.

These FQ's are rather drab-looking because they are all authentic Civil War reproductions. I am preparing some of them to be cut into 5" nickels for my August 15th swap-group's deadline. If you are interested in joining, here is the link:
We send in sets of 5 pairs of nickels that are all the same, then we get back the same number of squares we sent, but in all different pairs. It's a great way to expand your variety and to get access to fabrics from other regions in the country. I love swapping! When my mailbox gets that big squishy envelope, it feels like Christmas! I'm gonna use some CW nickels to continue to build my pile of Bow Tie blocks from Bonnie's Cheddar Challenge. My stack of them is now up to 50 made!

 You can also see all the components of blue and neutrals, the four-patches and the Half Square Triangles, that are being made for my Blue Ridge Beauty. My whole Quilt Cave looks like a blueberry bomb exploded! And if you look at the top of the last photo, you'll see a big ole coffee can holding all of my carefully hoarded Bonnie "bonus triangles." I have no idea how many I already have there, but it is all the ones from making HST's for "Yankee Christmas" (Carolina Christmas) AND from the ongoing Sister's Choice blocks, too. My Yankee Christmas used red HST's.

The Sister's Choice blocks are using green HST's and yield a cool eight bonus HST's per block! Yippee! I keep dreaming of an Ocean Waves...
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