Saturday, February 28, 2009

I love tutorials!

I've seen these adorable little fabric baskets turning up on various blog spots and then today I actually came upon the tutorial to make one ... so I printed it off ('cause the old memory isn't what it used to be) and I made one! I filled it with some things for a friend who is undergoing radiation treatment for breast cancer ... thought it might be a day brightener. Here's where to print your own tutorial so you can make one too: basket tutorial

More fabric!

I love fabric! (silly statement from a quilter, huh?) I have been inspired by some pictures I've seen on other quilter's blogs with projects using yellows and oranges set in sparkling white and I had to go get me some! Much as I'm itching to start cutting and stitching, I'm going to wash it all first (hard to get the traditionalist out of an old timer). Oh, and that's not all I bought, so there'll be more! Happy weekend!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Busy for Benjamin

Between getting involved in my flickr group for the virtual quilting bee and cutting out and putting together the first of what will be many quilts for my up and coming grandson Benjamin (due in June) I realize I haven't posted anything since Thursday. So here's Ben's first quilt. Rhonda loves frogs and I am sure she's going to like it. Talked to her on the phone today and found out she's registered at Babies R Us so I can do some virtual shopping as well. Weekend's almost over, here we go again!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Bee excited ... be very excited!!

I am so excited!! I was chosen to participate in Rachel Griffith's virtual quilting bee and I am so thrilled. I can't wait for further information. And the anticipation for the first package of fabric to arrive. Whew, I can hardly contain myself! My children think I'm totally bonkers and my husband just shakes his head! More later.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Doll quilt

Now Lily's doll quilt is finished. I just need to get labels on them and today is my day off, so no problem. Good timing, too, as I have managed to come down with a horrific cold/cough combination. Drinking really hot tea helps, but then I have to run to the bathroom constantly! Ugh, this too shall pass! Going to head down to my craft area and see if I can do some organizing before I launch into another project. May or may not be successful with that. Take care!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Shower gift finished!

Whew! The quilts I committed to making for my co-worker's baby shower (which is for twins) are done (all but labeling them). The shower will be Wednesday over our lunch break. I want to make a little doll quilt for her three year old daughter. That'll just be a fun little no-brainer. (You know, no pattern in particular, just put something cute together from what's at hand. I have plenty of scraps, so this shouldn't be a challenge.) One of the bloggers that I've enjoyed following is going to hostess a virtual quilting bee. It sounds like fun, and at the end of the year, each participant will have enough quilt squares to put together a quilt. I do so hope to be included. Well, here's a picture of my most recent endeavors. I liked the scrappy binding a lot. I'm very pleased with the end result. I hope Ashley likes them.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Scrappy Bag

I didn't want to waste the little pink scraps I had left over from the quilt top I'm making, so I decided to "crazy quilt" them onto a muslin foundation piece and put together a cute little tote bag. And I might add, I love it !!! I may never throw away another scrap again!

Project Pink ... step three.

Individual blocks become rows of blocks. Sometimes I rearrange them a gazillion times before I'm happy with the final result. Sometimes I wish I had the ambition to rip some apart and put them in a different order, but that sounds too much like work! Today's my day off and I'm debating if I should go out to buy my backing fabric, but I don't really want the interruption in my day, and I won't need it before weekend. Better to stay put and make the minutes count. More later!

Project Pink ... step two.

Our strips and squares are now blocks, ready to be sewn into rows. Strip piecing really speeds the process up, not to mention saves a LOT of thread. It's amazing when you stop to realize how much thread you're throwing away when you clip all those tails! Okay, gotta keep moving!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Project Pink

I've decided to use the blue Cubby-Hole pattern quilt top I've already finished as the boy half of my co-worker Ashley's soon-to-be twins quilts. Now I need to make a corresponding one in pink, as the verdict is one of each. I've been going through my stash to see what I can come up with so as not to have to go out and purchase new fabrics. I'll probably have to pick up something for the backs ... haven't decided what yet. Maybe gingham, maybe ticking stripes? Depends on what strikes my fancy when I'm out looking. (Or "in" looking, as I tend to shop as much online now as actually going to the store.) Anyway, just a peek at what I'm up to.

p.s. I've found some great blogs from people who also quilt. It's been fun seeing what others are up to. I've listed a few of them here on mine, so check them out!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Hooray for me !!

I just finished filing our state and federal 2008 tax returns. This might be a record for the earliest ever! It's always such a relief to have it done, and I love e-filing. Still need to do local, and the kiddo's. Hope their's isn't an issue. Turns out that they didn't have any federal withheld from the wee little bit they did make last summer, but hopefully they wouldn't have owed anything, so it'll just be a wash. They kind of looked forward to a refund as a mini savings account, but this year, it ain't gonna happen. Live and learn, I guess. Well, got other things to move on to before this weekend slips away from me.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Memories ...

May 8, 1976
My wedding day.
My Best Guy.
I love you so much, dad.

Me ... age 19 ... and my best guy!

My little buddy

My little Bitsy Lou can be a royal pain in the neck sometimes, but boy-oh-boy, I love that dog! It's funny how attached you can get to an animal. When I had to put Phoebe down, I said I would never put myself through that again, and here we are. Guess I have to eat those words!

My little sunshine  Bitsy Lou

My grandson in utero

Baby Benjamin Nye, profile 01/27/09.

Okay, this is way exciting! Here is the ultrasound of my grandson, Benjamin! Do you think he's got my nose?!!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

4-23-26 to 2-07-08

This Saturday will be the first anniversary of my dad's passing. I can hardly believe it. I miss him so much. It doesn't matter how sick he was before he died, I still wasn't ready for him to go. I feel him in my heart and I know he doesn't want me to be sad, so I try to remember and smile through the tears. I love you daddy.

Quilting Inspiration

I have a load of quilting books that I've either purchased over the years or inherited from my folks but lately I find myself going to the internet and surfing for inspiration. There are many websites that offer free patterns that you can print right off, and also galleries that let you see other quilters work ... I have more ideas of things I'd like to do "someday" than I probably have days left in my life. Some good sites are:,,, McCall's Quilting Online,,, If you're like me, you'll see something on one that catches your eye and you'll jump to another site and so on and so forth. I keep the things I've printed off in three ring binders in the clear page protector sheets. I love flipping through the pages and thinking, oh, yeah, I really wanted to make that! Sun's shining, life is good.

Wee bit of winter

The great big snow storm that was being predicted has apparently blown out to sea. We got a half-inch or so last evening, little slippery coming home from work, but no much anticipated day off of school or even two hour delay. Today's my day off ... I'm going to make a lasagna and told Steven to ask Ashleigh over for supper. That means some tidying up and dusting is in order (when I'd much rather be sewing!). That's okay, another weekend's just around the corner. Here's a picture of a tree in backyard (taken from the bathroom window). Stay warm!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Table toppers/table runners

Can you tell I'm not too into football? Here we are in the middle of the SuperBowl and I'm blogging! I have a table runner in progress that's supposed to look like apples. I'm doing some fairly detailed hand quilting in the large solid areas, but it's a tone on tone cream background and cream colored thread, so I'm not sure it's going to show up enough to warrant the time it's taking. And those purple disappearing marking pens? They're great, but don't mark more than you are going to stitch in one sitting, because they do truly disappear! (Isn't it funny how the lessons you learn the hard way are the ones that really stick with you?!!) The square table topper is one I made a couple of months ago. I made a runner for my china cupboard as well, but there's too much stuff on it to photograph it. Someday everything will be in it's place, but until then, I don't/can't sweat the small stuff. Life's too short!

Crazy Quilting

Sometimes I just start sewing with no real outcome in mind. That was pretty much what was going on when I found some muslin squares in the boxes of fabric Peggy gave me. I had been doing some research on foundation piecing and read where you could piece right onto fabric, rather than on paper, so I thought I'd play around with it. The result: a new pillow for the couch and a table topper that still needs the binding hand sewn on. The pillow top was actually paper pieced, in two sections for each square, then four squares sewn together with border added to make it big enough for the pillow I wanted to cover. Then I just made a simple envelope back (There, Renee, THAT's what it's called ... I just couldn't think of it when we spoke on the phone!) and ta-da! .. a new accessory for the living room. For the table topper, I just kept adding pieces and pressing as I went. In some places you have to turn an edge under and slip stitch, unless you're going to do a decorative top stitch (which I did with a simple zig-zag) and then the hand stitching isn't necessary. SuperBowl's on ... Steelers are up 3-0 and it's already the second quarter. Be time to get up and go to work before I know it!

Another movie date!

We saw the previews of "Taken" when we went to see Gran Torino, and it looked good. So we decided yesterday afternoon to go in to see it. Was kind of a last minute decision (in fact, Ronnie was in the middle of baking bread), kids weren't around, so we decided, why not?

Well, all I can say is that if you like an action thriller, this is the movie for you. It was amazing! Probably what I would say isn't even my "type" of movie, but it was so, so good. And just from the perspective of being a parent, the concept of your child being abducted... my heart rate was up from the first five minutes of the film until it was over. I highly recommend it. Had I seen this movie BEFORE Rhonda asked if she could go to Europe her senior year of high school, I would have said No!

Came home to discover I needed to come up with a last minute baby shower gift. I remembered some flannel fabrics I already had cut into squares, so I decided to see if I could do a marathon project. I've been wanting to try a rag quilt so now seemed to be the time. The whole concept sounded basically simple ... sandwich a smaller batting square between two flannel squares and sew an "X" through each, corner to corner. Sew your squares together with your seam allowances to the FRONT of the quilt (very important detail ... just ask my seam ripper!) , using a wider than usual seam allowance because you are going to "clip" a fringe into this seam allowance before washing the quilt. The initial washing before presenting as a gift starts the "ragging" process (thus the name) and fluffs everything up. Despite having to use my seam ripper (or my "un-sewer", as my dad called it) and having to go back and re-sew some seams where I clipped too close, I was tickled pink (okay, it was blue) with the result. Softest thing I've ever made ... I forgot how nice flannel could feel. And, duh, I forgot to take a picture of it before I sent it on it's way. I had some squares left over, so I whipped up a quick burp cloth to match while the quilt was in the dryer. I attached a little gift tag that said "Just because spit happens doesn't mean you can't still be cute!" Once I was done, I realized I had a headache, probably from being worried I wasn't going to get it done in time. Oh my, now I can breathe!