Monday, January 16, 2017

En Provence

My En Provence quilt is now completely pieced.  It has been so much fun cyber stitching along with my little sister (IG alaskanquilter) who lives in Alaska.  She finished hers a day ahead of me!  I always enjoy Bonnie Hunter's Mystery QALs and this one is one of my favorites - even though I am not a purple person.  My biggest problem was finding floor space large enough to photograph it.   The sun shining in the room appears to have taken the bottom corner off, but it is really all there.   I am so pleased with the way it all came together.


We've had storm after storm roll through our area.  It has been really wonderful after so many years without moisture.  The plants and trees are loving it - I am sure!  As well, we have had so many beautiful rainbows.  This one was so pretty, but faded by the time I could grab the camera for a picture. 


Guess it was a bit late to find the pot of gold too.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

A New Year

Best laid plans of being a better blogger have gone out the window as quickly as the first two weeks of the new year have passed.  I just keep telling myself that it is living life rather than documenting life.  Sounds good.....right? 

There has been very little sewing going on around here, but I did manage to get a whole day of sewing in on Saturday - a stormy day at the beach.  I started assembling my En Provence quilt top.  There are lots of little pieces, but I am loving the way it is looking.



We've been having such wonderful storms rolling through and delivering us the much needed water that we have missed for the last few years.  One thing about storms is the amazing sunrises or sunsets they provide.  Sometimes you'll get both on the same day.  This was a recent sunset - a photo taken at our daughter's house.



After a stormy day at the beach on Saturday, we woke up to this beautiful sunrise on Sunday morning.



As I have stitched my En Provence, I have been sewing strips together to create blocks for this month's Block Lotto blocks.  There is still plenty of time to create a few if you want to join in on the fun.  I was one of the winners of last month's string blocks so it has been fun receiving the "squishy" envelopes each day.



I'm off to clean house as I've had little ones the last few days.  Stay safe from the nasty weather out there.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Ahhhhhh.............

Is it just me or am I hearing a universal sigh today?  This was how I felt today.....

Grandson's bearded dragon chilling out!


I won't even try to catch up on the last few weeks here other than to say that it has been a crazy Christmas season.  My mom fell, broke her leg and then developed a blood clot.  Hours have been spent in hospitals and she is currently in a rehab facility.  We were able to "spring" her for a few hours on Christmas Eve.

Our Christmas was wonderful with family all here.  I apologize for no photos, but it was a hectic evening.  My DILs promised me some photos so I will share once that happens. 

Our son and his family left last evening so today should have been a day of cleaning.  Instead, I took a little time to sew Clue #5 from Bonnie Hunter's En Provence Mystery QAL.  Cleaning will wait but today I needed to scratch my itch!



I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas.  It's hard to believe we are getting ready to say goodbye to 2016.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

It's Beginning to Look Like Christmas

As the weeks quickly tick away here, I am feeling as though Christmas will be here before I can blink my eyes. 

As with most stitchers at this time of the year, a lot of what we create is secretive until after Christmas.  There has been a bit of sewing that can be shown.

Using a snowflake embroidery design, I created a small candle mat.  Hopefully, it will be able to be used past the Christmas season.


Like so many others, I have been trying to keep up with Bonnie Hunter's En Provence Mystery.  I managed to finish Step 3 and finally finished Step 1 too.



Although I probably won't have a lot of time to work on these blocks, I did start on Scrap Dance Waltz - hosted by Carole at From My Carolina Home.  I loved this pattern.



We had a few little helpers to help get the Christmas tree up yesterday.  Of course the ornaments ended up rather clustered and low!  ;-)  It is always fun to have the little ones here for the Christmas traditions. 


Before the train goes under the tree, the children like to set it up and play with it - building bridges with the blocks and running it faster than it can go on the smaller track under the tree.


While we are enjoying the last of the roses before they get pruned back, the poinsettia now has bright red flowers all over it. 


 You can see how big these flowers are when you see my hand in the next photo.


I was recently a winner on Soma's blog and received these gorgeous batik fabrics along with a few of her beautiful patterns.  The photo does not do the colors any justice.  As I told Soma, I have been wanting to make a blue quilt for awhile now and these should be perfect.   



Just to add to the Christmas eating, they have recently opened a Krispy Kreme Doughnut shop fairly close to us.  Oh.my.goodness!  I loved seeing the doughnuts make their way down the processing line only to get placed in your box at the end - still warm.  They absolutely melt in your mouth.....so, how bad can they really be for you? 



Two more weeks from today is Christmas.  Relax and enjoy the beautiful season. 






Sunday, December 4, 2016

Welcome, December

December....how can that be?  I'm fairly certain that this year went much faster than it should have.  Ready or not, here it is.  I know I am not alone in disbelief.

The crud has struck like a vengeance around here so accomplishing much has been a bit of a challenge.  Thankfully, commitments and entertaining have forced us to keep moving.  We had our big Thanksgiving last weekend - in the rain - and then our annual Christmas dinner here last night.  Now that those two big dinners are behind me, I managed to slip away into my sewing space today.  I have missed the dates with my sewing machine. 

There is no way that I can keep up with the annual Bonnie Hunter's Mystery quilt during these busy days.  I am partway through step one, but worked on step two today.  Although these are not "my" colors, I love the way they are all coming together. 


My sister is also doing the Mystery.  This is her first time doing one and we've been having fun sharing our photos with each other.  Although I have not been able to convince her to start her blog YET, she is posting her progress on her IG account (alaskanquilter) along with some amazing quilts that she has been creating.  If you follow her you will also see some spectacular views from her Alaskan sewing studio.

December was the final month of our MCM Bee.  Elizabeth is the queen bee this month and requested that we make a block of the block that we requested when we were queen bee.  Isn't that a great idea?  This was the block I sent her.


The only other sewing I have finished is my postcard from Sheila's postcard swap. This one went off to Brazil.


Do you remember the cope that I reconstructed?  It was a thrill to receive a photo of it in use.


When the whole gang is here for Thanksgiving we try to get a group photo.  The rain canceled our attempt this year so we gathered after church the next day for our photo.  We were missing one who had to head back to college early that morning.


I have an update on my iron.  I did contact Oliso as Candace suggested.  Even though the guarantee had expired, Oliso did offer to replace the iron for about a third of the price of buying a new one.  It is so nice when a company stands behind their product. 

It looks like winter has finally arrived to the better part of the country.  Our temps have also taken a dip.  It is the time of the year when the fires in the fireplace feel really good.  I guess it is December.  Enjoy the days ahead.




Monday, November 21, 2016

The Death of My Oliso

 It's a sad tale.  Yes, indeed it is.  My Oliso died yesterday.  I loved this iron.  It had amazing steam, it didn't shut off after a few short minutes and it did a great job.  I must admit that it was not easy to get used to the fact that I did not have to lift it upright when not in use.  But....it is amazing how hard it is going back to one that does need to stand upright!  lol  I also was not crazy about how difficult it was to empty the water when finished using it.  All the same, I will miss my Oliso.  When I went to fill it yesterday the water ran out of the bottom of it and the red light keeps flashing.  Now it is back to the old Sunbeam standby.  Will I replace it?  I'm not sure the price of it was worth the time it lasted.  Mind you, I am hard on irons and tended to replace one every six months or so before Ms. Oliso.  It's just a good thing Mr. Sunbeam has an alarm to remind me that I have left it flat! 



It was a rainy weekend for us so that meant I had some sewing time.  With Thanksgiving coming up this week I know I will not have that time as the week progresses.  I had a lot of little HSTs leftover from my autumn stars quilt and decided to use them as the center of our Minis and More project this month.  This month's choice was a tutorial from Sherri.  It will look cute on the sofa for Christmas with my new Christmas tree skirt.  Be sure to check both Sherri's and Michele's blogs on December 1st for the Minis and More Parade.




Also this weekend, I got out all of my great Spelling Bee words to try to pull them together.  There was a lot of space to "fill in". 


The little sewing notion paper pieced blocks were added next.....still more fill ins needed. 


Looking better....... now to sew it together.


A few spacers were added and some blocks changed.  Once it was all sewn together I felt as though I lost the words.  Okay.....rip....rip...rip.


How about some striped sashing between the rows?  Yes, the words look much better now.  The quilt now measures  60x68 so I am not sure about a border.  What do you think?  The "spool" block next to the word "pattern" looks like two wine glasses to me.  Guess that would be a good block for all the ripping I did. 







I'm going to link this one up with Quilter's Monday.



If you celebrate Thanksgiving, I hope you will have a wonderful day.  There is so much for us to be grateful for and it is nice to have a special day to remind us of that. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Trunk Full of Quilts



How do you ever choose a favorite quilt?  It's like choosing a favorite child!  Soma at Whims and Fancies is having her annual Trunk Full of Quilts show where we get to show some of our favorite quilts.

Since it is fall I will start off with the quilts that are currently up around my house.






Then, of course there are the little quilts that are so gratifying and fun to make.








There are quilts done in QALs which are always exciting......







.....and blog hops.....

I think that mygreatest joy comes from the quilts that are gifted to others. I wish I had been taking photos before I started blogging as I have made a quilt for each of the grandchildren.  Now, some of them want "grown up quilts" which make this grandma's heart sing.  Whether it is for family or needy causes, quilting for others is a great feeling.















Christmas is quickly approaching and the Christmas quilts will soon be brought out for enjoyment.  






Of course we can't forget the swap quilts.  The x and + quilt was one of my favorites.  I love the scrappy goodness of it.


This will be my next favorite bee quilt.




This is just a small sampling of the joy that quilting has given me through the years.  To see some really spectacular work be sure to visit the links on Soma's blog.