Friday, May 24, 2013

A Little Process

I received Julie and Eric's new line, Baby Jane, this week.  I love how cheery it is.  Don't you?  
First I cut strips in various lengths.
Then I cut those into squares and triangles.

Sewed them into blocks

Then into a row.

Hoping to get a few more rows done today.
Then a top
And then a quilt.
What are you hoping to get done today?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

It Takes a Village to Raise a Child

Do you remember these little houses?  I made them with no plan in mind.  Just a little mindless sewing.  Saturday I was planning on watching my nieces and nephew.  Letting them help me plant my garden.  Well their dad settled his court case and would be home to watch said cuties and it rained so needless to say.  I had no cuties to watch and didn't want to plant my garden in the rain so I pulled out the little houses and began to sew.
I started by making them all the same size.  A few of the really little ones I combined into one block.  I thought I had done the math right but when I went to put them together I had 29 blocks instead of 30.  I thought about taking one of the combined blocks together but then I saw these blocks from an exchange I had done with Karen and Mary a few years ago and thought two children in the center of my quilt would be nice.  Using my Snips and Snails meets Sugar and Spice pattern I made my little children.  They looked big against the houses.  As I looked at the layout I thought 'Hey they look like a mommy and daddy.  They just need a baby.'  So I added a baby.  Sewed them all together and...
It Takes a Village to Raise a Child was born.  

Try to figure our how to quilt it now.  Any suggestions?


Monday, May 20, 2013

Blue Bird of Happiness

A couple of years ago my parents served on the Navajo Indian Reservation in Monument Valley.  While there my mom was introduced to Blue Bird Flour.  It comes in these cute cloth sacks. 
She had been saving them to make something.  She has quite a stack going.  Well this weekend my dad was up and brought me the stack.  There are 11 sacks of various sizes.  I called to thank my mom for this wonderful gift.  She told me that she didn't know when she would get to them but knew that I would enjoy them.  She is so right.  The wheels in my mind are turning.  Plans are forming. 
What would you do with a stack of these lovely sacks?

Friday, May 17, 2013

Organic lines and loops

I was hoping to have this pretty little quilt done today so I could show you.  But alas I am a very slow quilter.    This quilt features the fabric line Scrumptious by Bonnie and Camille for Moda.  I thoroughly enjoy playing with this fun line.  DD loves the colors and prints.  We are planning on making a skirt for her with the scraps. I quilted organic lines with random loops added in.
Being true to my no boring boarders pledge I added a drunkard's path around the quilt.

Just a little bit more to do.  Then I can show you the finished product.  

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

No More Boring Boarders

Boarders sometimes throw me for a loop.  My quilts often get stuck at this stage of the game.  I hate to just slap some fabric around the edges and call it good.  I know there are times when the right fabric works for this and it frames your quilt perfectly.  But I often have a hard time finding that right fabric.  I also know there are times when no boarders are necessary and a quilt can stand on it's own.  For all those other times it can be fun to piece a boarder.  Like this one I did using made fabric.  I felt it went so well with the scrappy blocks.
That's why I broke down and spent a day piecing more dashes for my Mad Dash quilt.  I knew the added dash boarder would complete the quilt.
Just like the drunkards' path boarder completes my Hippie Trails quilt.

A boarder can also add meaning to a quilt.  My siggy quilt I put on point and added giant log cabin blocks cut in half to house my friends.  And my Dutchmen's Journey quilt that I added a majestic mountain boarder to symbolizing my great grandparents immigration from Holland to Utah.

So I challenge you to put an end to boring boarders.  The time and effort are worth it.  You and your quilts will thank me.


Monday, May 13, 2013

Happy Mail Day

I hope everyone had a lovely Mother's Day.  I must admit I love being a mother.  I am so proud of my four children.  Seeing them grow into responsible adults and accomplish great things makes my heart sing.  What also makes my heart sing is the lovely mail I've been receiving.  The quilty hugs for Happy Chemo have been rolling in thanks in large part to Sarha's Hand2Help .  I just received this beauty from Carol E @ Giraffe Dreams.
And these two cuties from Kathleen @ Quilting professor.  The quilting on the blue and orange one is fabulous.
I also received a lovely thank you from a patient who received a Happy Chemo quilt.  Let me share a little of it with you.  
"...it is amazing and I am the envy of the Stanford infusion center, where I am being treated for liver cancer!  It keeps me warm and makes me feel very special at this difficult time.  I can't thank you enough."
Thank you to everyone who helps bring comfort to those in need.  Getting notes like this just makes my day and makes me wish I could do so much more.  I appreciate all of you who enable me to help so many more than I could by myself.  And while I am handing out thank yous.  Look what else came in the mail today; the lovely Denyse Schmidt fabric you all helped me to locate.

I truly appreciate all who helped me track it down.  Can't wait to make more blocks for my rendition of my Great Grandma Ida's quilt.

Friday, May 10, 2013

A Gift From A Friend

When I Gave the Plan B quilt over to my friend she was so thankful she wanted to do something for me.  I told her it was not necessary.  I had made the quilt because I love her and wanted to do something for her.  I knew she was going through a lot and needed a pick me up.  And when I think of pick me ups I think of cheerful quilts.  So I made her a quilt.  
I thought she would snuggle in it.  But she has chose to display it on her wall where this quilt use to live.
She told me it had ties to the problems she was facing and she didn't want it anymore.  Did I want it?  Yes I did!  But I needed to make sure she really did not want it.  I found it hard to believe that someone could not love this antique quilt.  After some convincing and an explanation of where it had come from I decided it held no bad memories for me.  Only memories of my friend so I took it. Now we both have quilts with only happy memories.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Can You Help Me Identify This Fabric?

I started reproducing my great grandma's quilt.  I'm giving it a modern flare with the grey background and bright prints from today.  My problem is I have run out of the heart fabric.  I won a fat quarter of it and I don't know what it is.  Can you help me identify it?
Do you know where I might be able to get some more?  Any help is appreciated.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Going In Circles

I've been working on a few new patterns.  For the most part I enjoy this processes.  But I must admit that one of them has been giving me a little trouble.  First I forgot the extra seam allowance I would need as I would be cutting the blocks apart and sewing them back together.  Then I misread something on EQ so I ended up the blocks the wrong size.  But the third times a charm.  I hope to reveal soon what these pretty little circles will become.
As for all my mistakes, I'll save them and find a plan B.  They are far too cute to throw away.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

May is a Great Time for a Birthday

May is a month for birthdays in my family.  It starts with my Josh followed by my niece, Jenni, and me.  Then my sister, Lori, nephew, Tyler and niece, Amy.  So we got together for a birthday/ farewell party.  Josh leaves tomorrow for the summer.  I'm going to miss him.  My first one to leave the nest.  He's old enough and I know he'll do fine.  It's just hard to see him go.
Anyway I made a big cake for the party.  I used two cake mixes; one chocolate the other yellow.  I tilted the pan while I poured in the chocolate then set it flat and hurried and poured in the yellow.  This way I have two kinds of cake and only one dirty pan.
It also makes everyone happy.  They can choose what kind of cake they want and if they can't decide the middle has both.  I saw a picture on the web of a cake with swirls.  I figured I could do that, since it's the quilting pattern I'm best at.  Well, I thought I had some disposable decorating bags, wrong.  Apparently DD used them the last time she made cupcakes.  Well growing up my amazing mom, who decorated wedding cakes, would used wax paper rolled into a cone with the tip cut off for the decorating tip.  So I figured I could do that.  Well, technically I did, but it took several attempts.  I had icing all over.  In fact I ran out that's why the upper left hand corner is missing icing.  That little bit ended up in a sticky mess on my counter as I tried to get it out of one of the blown out wax paper bags.  No worries, it still tasted good, and we had a fun party.


Monday, May 6, 2013

Mad Dash

I changed my mind.  I was going to use made fabric but it took away from the cute churn dashes.  So came up with another plan.  I've decided to call it Mad Dash.  I added strips of white to make each block finish at 12".  Then I alternated random strips of colored fabric with random strips of white.  I kept adding until they reached 12 1/2".  Then I cut them into 1 1/2" strips and added 1 1/2" strips of white on either side.  I used these for the sashing.  I made corner squares by surrounding a bit of fabric with white so it measured 3 1/2" square.
Now I'm trying to decide if I want the dashes as an outside boarder or if I just want to use a scrappy binding to finish it off.    What are your thought?

Friday, May 3, 2013

A Home for Plan B

Plan B is quilted with swirls (aka the winds of change) and bound
My friend loves it.  Watching her notice little things and exclaim with delight over them was so rewarding.  She was going to sleep under it one night but changed her mind and decided to hang it so you see it as you come in the front door.

We plan to take better pictures later but we both have children that were celebrating birthdays yesterday.  Her Kate turned 6 and my Josh turned 20.  When things calm down, like that ever happens, but some time we will find a spare minute or two and take a picture that really does this quilt justice.  
Linking up with Sarah for a big Whoop Whoop!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Soup and Bread Sticks

As requested I'm sharing my mom's bread stick recipe.  I don't have a picture of them.  I had a Happy Chemo sew in yesterday and knew that time would be short for dinner.  So I filled the crock pot with soup.  I love my crock pot.  Fill it in the morning and it means more time to sew in the afternoon.  And more time to sew is a good thing.  This is my minestrone soup.  It makes a lot and I get to enjoy it for lunch the next day.  Its great on a cold night and good for using up veggies from the garden in the summer.  And my mom's bread  sticks are fabulous dipped in it.  So without further ado here are the recipes for my minestrone soup and mom's bread sticks.
Minestrone
1- (28 oz.) can tomatoes  ( I use ones I have bottled from my garden)
2 c. leftover roast beef
1 quart water
2 large carrots, peeled, sliced
2 c. broth (I use any leftover gravy I have from the roast and make up the difference with broth)
1 Tbs. parsley
1/2 tsp. basil
1 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1 crushed garlic clove
1 (16 oz.) can green beans drained 
1 (16 oz.) can garbanzo beans drained
1 (16 oz.) can kidney beans drained
1 1/4 cups pasta (I use penne)
Throw it all in your crock pot except pasta.  Cook on low 6-8 hours.  A half hour before serving turn crock pot to high and add pasta.

Mom's Bread Sticks
3 c. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
2 Tbs. sugar
1 1/2 c. hot water
1 Tbs. SAF instant yeast
Mix water, salt sugar and half of the flour in mixer.  Add yeast, then the rest of the flour.  Mix 3 minutes; let rest 10 minutes.  Roll out 1/2" thick.  Melt 1/2 cube of butter on cookie sheet.  Cut dough into strips; roll in butter.  Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and garlic and herb Mrs. Dash.  Let rise 10 minutes.  Bake at 375* for 20 min.

When I make the cheese bread I just make the dough roll it out and fill.  Then follow the baking the directions.


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Sew Bee Wonky

I have belonged to the Sew Bee Wonky online bee for several years now.  It's where the words for my Plan B quilt came from, and the hearts for my Crazy Love.  These very cute an wonky churn dashes are also from this group.    I'm using made fabric to make them all the same size.  Then I will play with a few sashing ideas. I might have the ladies in the group help me here. As May is my turn to be queen bee again.  
But then again I might come up with another wonky block idea.  I need to do it fast as today is the first of May.  But I didn't want to ask for my blocks until I was up to date on the ones I needed to make.  So yesterday I made these two blocks.

They were fun to make but I was a little short in the corner of this one so I added a little orange.  I sure hope  Manda likes them.
What your favorite wonky blocks?