28 November 2010

Sorry, guys

I realize I've been silent for over a week now...sorry about that. I'm sewing like a madwoman to get these quilts done in time to ship to their recipients by Christmas! I have a picture of Pop-Pop's finished quilt, I'm in the middle (well, towards the end) of quilting Mom's Fall Leaf Quilt, and TX Mom's quilt top is pieced and ready for basting. I promise I'm working!

Oh, and I'm learning how to Free-Motion Quilt! Kind of by accident...I wanted to give the leaves on Mom's Quilt veins, which meant that I had to free-hand draw them. I've only done a bit of curves with the leaves (which are completely quilted now!) and drawing out blades of grass (some are more straight up-and-down zig-zags, but some look like grass! I only had one time where I had a tension issue, too...I switched thread from one brand to another and had to raise my top-thread tension about 1/4 of a value on my machine (2.5 to 2.75-ish). So hooray for that. I haven't ventured into stippling (it just looks like way too much turning the whole quilt sandwich for machine has a really little throat and you get a workout every time you turn the quilt at all!) but hey - gotta start somewhere, right?

It's been great to have my husband home. Unfortunately, he woke up several times last night sick and hasn't been feeling well all day so boo on that. We did do some shopping and small travels earlier this Thanksgiving weekend - Christmas Markets opened this weekend and we hit up two, plus found me my dress for the ball in two weeks. Nothing like waiting until the last minute, eh? The dress fits pretty well (the arm-hole...yes, it's asymmetrical so there's only a little tight but definitely looks great) and while the color is a bit out of my comfort zone (lavender) it goes great with a silver pair of heels I had left over from my sister's wedding a few years back. Add in a pair of silver long gloves we found at the same store, some jewelry I already had, and a touch of makeup - voila! I'm ready for my carriage to take me to the ball!

My hope (which seems fairly doable) is to have Mom's quilt to the point that it needs only hand-stitching (binding) by this weekend because I think we're going to be doing a bit of traveling. We'll see.

In other news, if you remember how I talked about my Grandfather being moved from Florida to Ohio to go into an assisted living facility...well, the lease on his old place was paid for a year after he left to give my dad time to go get it cleaned out. Apparently Pop-Pop didn't throw ANYTHING away. At all. My dad found 20 boxes full of pictures of my Grandfather from WWII, his wedding, etc. He also found more of my Grandmother's jewelry. I already have quite a few pieces of her jewelry from when she died while I was in high school. I love her jewelry and wear it a lot even if some of it is only costume jewelry. He also found some of her old quilting fabric, which my mom is going to send to me with her jewelry and some other things.

Now, I never really knew my Grandmother as an adult - I was in high school when she passed away, but she had Alzheimer's pretty badly before that. I knew her as a child, because she and Pop-Pop visited a few times and I stayed at their place in Florida for a few weeks one summer, but I didn't know her as an adult. It wasn't until very recently that I realized that she had quilted. I have two small quilts she had given me when I was a kid and when looking at them I realized she had hand-quilted them. They're hanging on the wall in my sewing room. I take after her (and her side of the family) more than any other of my family members physically - she was over 6' tall and had feet so big she had two pairs of custom-made dress shoes and wore men's shoes the rest of the time. I'm not that bad (5'10" and my feet are a mere size 11 womens) but even my face structure looks like her side of the family. I was born six days after her birthday too - another way I feel connected to her. I'm excited too because one of the pieces of jewelry I'm getting is an opal ring...we share that birthstone and the ring is real opals - a larger center one with smaller ones around it. My mom showed me on Skype and it's gorgeous!

Is it silly to feel so connected to someone I barely knew as an adult? And yet I do, because in a way I feel like I'm following in her footsteps. I'm a lot like her in a lot of ways...and I hope I become more like her because from what I can remember, she was an amazing woman. I can only hope to be more like my Grandma. And that's about the hokiest thing I've said all day. Oh well - such is life. Have you ever felt this way towards someone you only barely knew or who you didn't know at all?

16 November 2010


I will be unplugged for a few days as my husband returns from his business trip in the middle of the night tonight. He's been gone since August. He won't have internet access until he gets home, so I can say this and surprise him - I love you so much, honey! I'm so excited for you to come home! I can't wait to see you! I've missed you...but my love has only grown while you've been gone!

Hopefully when I start blogging again it'll be on my computer, not my phone!

Also, this made me laugh...because for me, at least some of the time, it's true.

So let's get that adrenaline going!

12 November 2010

I'm pretty sure you'll think I'm crazy, but...

To start off with, I've finished the bluebonnets for Texas Mom's quilt. Aren't they pretty? I haven't figured out how I want to quilt them yet but I still have a little time before that's an issue. I feel almost a little guilty because I've been invited to guest post on the Slow Poke Quilters blog but I feel not quite so slow this week. Oh well!
Now for my crazy side. I did something today that I haven't done in months: I threw away perfectly good food. It wasn't moldy and hadn't yet spoiled. But I dreaded eating it like the plague. It started its life innocently enough. Tuna casserole from scratch doesn't sound evil in the least. But I tried doing it without a recipe and that's where the casserole turned evil. I didn't make enough of the creamy sauce, or maybe I just used too much tuna or added too many vegetables. Whatever the reason, this casserole went the way of Darth Vader: it turned on its old teacher. But unlike Obi-Wan Kenobi, I was able to take its evil out with only a bit of a guilty conscience. The frugal side is throwing an all out hissy fit over the whole thing, but even she can't look a can of tuna in the eyes right now.
And so now that you probably think I've totally gone off the deep end, I'm going to sign off with the promise that the pan that once held the tuna casserole will, by the end of the weekend, hold something much yummier - my mother in law's cranberry date bars. I promise to use a recipe to make them too.

11 November 2010

Even more progress!

Pop-Pop's quilt binding is sewn down! I finished today since I had the day off for Veterans Day. It hasn't been washed yet because my washer takes between two and three hours to complete a load and I wasn't going to be awake to put it in the drier. Pictures will be posted as soon as it's been washed and dried!
The picture with this post shows the progress I've made on TX Mom's quilt. Row two of bluebonnets is now complete. This quilt is teaching me how to stress about it less. There are two places where a square and a triangle of the same fabric are touching but after spending some time staring at it I really just can't bring myself to care about it enough to rip it apart to fix it. Did you notice it when you looked at it? Or did you have to look specifically for it? Do you think it looks bad enough that I should redo it? I'm really curious about what you all think.

10 November 2010


I've been making slow but steady progress with MT quilts this week. I've started piecing Texas Mom's quilt. It's the 4 seasons quilt. I've started with spring - bluebonnets. If you've ever been to Texas in the spring you've seen field upon field of those beautiful flowers, purple blue as far as the eye can see. I'm not sure if mine look quite right but my husband thinks they're fine. What do you think?
Beyond that, I'm over halfway done with hand sewing the binding down on Pop-Pop's quilt. I love the vibrant turquoise blue against the brown and green - it makes it look so bright! You will have pictures of it as soon as it's done.
One other thing - my husband will be home from his business trip next week! I've missed him so much. Do any of you have suggestions as to what sort of foods I should make to celebrate his homecoming? I'm running a bit low on food ideas.

05 November 2010

Quick post

Mom's quilt top is done! It doesn't lay completely flat but after all of the fudging I had to do plus all of the inset seams, I don't think I really care. I'm in love.

03 November 2010

I am not dead

...but my computer is. My phone blogging app only lets me post one picture at a time and I have no completed quilts at home so no Bloggers Quilt Festival for me. Sigh. I can't even post links.
Never fear, I am still quilting! Pop-Pop's quilt just needs its binding hand sewn on and Mom's quilt top is about 2/3 done. I just have the tricky inset seams in my future.
I have run into a snag though. I wanted to do a scrappy brown sashing on TX Mom's quilt but have run out of brown fabric! I've looked around online and have found only one store with a "brown" Fay quarter bundle but last time I ordered from them it took almost two months to get here. Do any of you know of other stores that have color sorted FQ bundles? I need a variety of brown fabrics, not just a bunch of brown batiks. I'll accept free fabric too, haha. I'm only mostly kidding.
It's late, and I have an early morning. I promise pictures later! Good night!