Monday, November 29, 2010

Wrapping Up November

A new banner is up - a quilt done almost 3 years ago when I started quilting and took almost a year to assemble.  Then it sat for another year not knowing what to do with the "quilt as desire" and then turned it over to a long armer to work the magic.  I call it "petits morceaux de bleus" - little bits of blue.

I've been called an "over achiever" and my goal for the month was to slow down and do things for fun.  I did just that, but there still was a lot of creating going on.  But I honestly enjoyed a slower process.  I sent my Secret Santa gift(s) and they should arrive at their destination today.  The main gift was this wallhanging made with Dawn Adelaide's Frosty Flakes pattern.  A few extra goodies were added to the box.  I hope my swap mate enjoys her Holidays.

And I finished quilting up the scrappy spider web for Aunt Spicy's blog - 100 Quilts for Charity.  I will take the quilt to my next guild meeting to be donated to the church for distribution of community families in need list for the Holiday Season.  I love this pattern and can see making more of these. 

 I mailed out 12 house blocks for the Love, Laugh, Quilt - Build a Community block swap.  When I signed up for this, I suddenly remembered my UFO/Orphan box and pulled all the house blocks.  I love making house blocks, and there was enough there (of many sizes and styles) to make at least 3 quilts!  I can see my work is cut out for me in 2011. 

I finished the 2nd step of Bonnie Hunters mystery.  My little basket looks like a pile of confections.  Then someone reminded me she was re-releasing Christmas Lights, so I  just had to jump on this one too.  Between these two quilts, I should really  manicure my stash. 

 I know a lot of people have added "Black Friday" shopping as a tradition, but I stay away from malls after Nov 1st.  But I did go to a special "fat quarters for food" sale at the Quilt Bug - my local quilt shop.  I like to use this to fill up on my lights and any missing colors - or what catches my fancy.  It helps the local food pantry - and of course we have to buy while we are there, so it helps to keep our favorite fabric shop open.  And I fabric framed a new cross-stitch mandella - Lighting the Tree.  It reminds me of all the tree lighting ceremonies right after Thanksgiving.

I have had my fill of "Scrooge" movies - I think every version was on this past weekend.  But my favorite is the 1951 Black & White "A Christmas Carol" with Alastair Sim.  December I hope to enjoy my new grandson - yet to hold/see him.  And continue with Bonnie's wonderful projects. I'd like ,also, to finish up two more charity quilts to donate to the church - there are so many in need.

Sewingly Yours,

Monday, November 22, 2010

Giving Thanks

       Patrick John Guthrie arrive 2 weekds early - 8lbs. - 18" at 12:45 11/23/10
       Big Ed, Mom, Lil' Ed, and baby are all doing fine
I added a new widget to AuntSpicy's new "100 Quilts" program.  Join in and help donate a quilt to a local charity for those in need during this holiday season.

I am recovering from a 3-day community artisians' show - very successful.  There were times you couldn't breathe it was so crowded.  I did some stitches there - very few.  I came home and got some things in progress - so pictures of my relaxing work.

I loved the Jelly Roll quilt along, so of course just had to do the Layer Cake.  I have a mix of Koyoto and Frosty Fat Quarters that are working well together and should make for a lovely soft quilt. 

A scrappy tree block using my 1.5" squares - yes I love to work with tiny pieces, either in paper piecing or regular piecing.  These will be sashed with a "red brick" and black corner stones.  I have some left over black/muslin and red/muslin 9-patches that might get worked into the final border.

And I am leasurely piecing the first step of Bonnie Hunter's new mystery - finding I don't have a lot of pinks in my stash/scraps, hopefully there is enough to use here without buying any more fabric.  Pink, orange, and purple are out of my comfort color zones.  Do you have a color you avoid?

And some cross stitch spring Mandela designs - yes I am looking forward to spring before the major part of winter is even here.  Lilacs and thistles - funny, there's those pinks and purples.  I love them in stitcheries, but not fabric - how odd.

I have watched a couple of Bing Crosby/Bob Hope  "road" movies.  They are pretty much the same story line no matter which "road" - song, dance, and fight over the same pretty girl.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving week and remember to give thanks to those in need,

Sewingly Yours,

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Going To The Depot

No not the train, I will be participating in a local artisans/crafters juried show Friday to Sunday.  It is set up in an Old Depot Station and sponsored by the Promotional and Historical Associations.  So I grabbed a few photos while packing up and hope to have some show photos - will have to borrow brother's camera as I think mine bit the dust.  Hmmmm - calling Santa.

I helped MOM in quilting up a panel quilt she made - it is being sent off to Iraq tomorrow.  Isn't it just too cute?  Our Tuesday class ladies, Mom, and I try to do a "cot" quilt to send each month.  Our local Doctor is currently stationed in one of the triage/hospitals and treats a lot of children.   We send them to him and he gives them out.   Good news to the community and his family, he is to be home before Christmas.
 I love these little clothes line hangers my son made.  They are for displaying your minis - had to make up a few "cheater" minis for a sample.  And I am taking a few of my Thumb Dolls (sitting with "Country Cousins" pattern by Red Rooster).  I use my thumb to make the heads, but I don't like them just plain (scarry) so I give them rag hair.

And I'm adding a few cross stitch for Chooky Blues'  "Quilters Stitch Tour".  The teddies I did last year - yes the entire piece is all stitches.  I love the brooch detail.  And the SAL I finished a couple of months ago and is my brick house.  There's not a fence, but I would love this some day.  And no bee hives anymore, but we had a stray hive take residence in our old milk house and  we had to have them removed - three different times!  The worry there was they were a new strain and very vicious - and we have  family members who are very allergic to bees.
.Well, off to load up the van to go do set-up.  Luckily this show is just the other side of town, no early rises and no late night home.  Yes, I have packed a few small hand stitching projects to work on.

Sewingly Yours,

Monday, November 15, 2010

Seeing Stars

It is a week of stars - bright and unexpected ones and falling, shooting ones.  I won "Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Vol 2" during the blog tour.  I cannot wait to get my copy!  And I won the Simplicity Creative Group sponsor's choice  on Quilting Gallery for my "Christmas Village" wallhanging during the weekly paperpiecing theme - a side winder.

Falling stars - my SIL and I have been gazing the skies most nights watching the shooting stars.  Leonids meteor showers are from Nov. 10-21.  We are seeing about 6 a night and one night was spectacular.  Find Leo in the North Sky as that is were they are shooting from.

I'm wrapping up those little projects and can actually see my table.  A few more Mug Rugs and some Tea Wallets. 

 Binding on a x-stitch table topper and a very puffy baby quilt for my daughter to use in the car this winter.  New baby soon - so excited.  # 1 granson already is using his quillow I made him last year for snuggling in the car. 

 It's nice to have those car blankets during the winter - young and old, so fancy up that backseat with a quilt or two.  Even a few pillows using up those orphan blocks.

Still enjoying those old movies.  "The Swan" with Grace Kelly and Alec Quiness - "80 Day Around the World" with David Nivens.

Sewingly Yours,                    

Thursday, November 11, 2010

100 Block Tour and Relaxed Sewing

I have so been enjoying the 100 Block Blog Tour.  I'm not one to just blog hop, but this is so special.  I hope I win a book - how great would it be to make a quilt with all these blocks?  I know my long armer would be drooling to get her hands on that one.

I found my leader/ender box rather full, so put together a crib quilt using a light flannel for batt and just tying it.  Friends have a new baby grandie due in spring, so just perfect. 
And I have a large, plastic pretzel barrel I store my triangle scraps in - that is so stuffed  full, I really need to get creative with those.  But instead, I pulled a few greens and used up some left-over WOW strips and made a feather tree for my SIL.  And I finished another little cross stitch - my little  Matryoshka Dolls (Russion nesting dolls).  I did my best in sorting thru my stash to find some fabric that looks festive and colorful.  Gosh, I need to brighten up my fabric choices!                                
 Still enjoying those old movies, but went to a theater production of Young Frankenstien.  It was well done and such a pleasant outing - theater, dinner and friends.  Probably my last big outing before the snow flies.  I hope you are mixing in some "fun" sewing and "me" time,
 Sewingly Yours,

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Sewing for Pleasure

I am enjoying just being able to sew for pleasure.  No pressure to finish and no need to really get something started.  I love all the Mug Rugs that are popping up - such a picture show of  self-interpretation of such a simple little project.
And I could just pull out something for whimsy - that darn barrel of scrap HSTs was calling me

And I could even take the time to fabric frame some simple cross stitch - a Fall and Winter done.
And I got to enjoy family time.  My very pregnant daughter and grandson came out for a visit.  She finished a few "secret" gifts on my machine while I spent time outdoors with my grandson.  We picked acorns and pinecones, rescued a few Geraniums (potted) for indoors, helped stack a little wood in the box for greatgrandma, took a ride on the outdoor swing, and fed the chipmonks and birds.  We timed our finishes perfectly.  Then out to a late lunch at a local cafe.  After they left, poor NaNa needed a nap, so curled up with furry and a quilt on the couch with an old B&W movie - Saratoga Trunk.  Needless to say, I don't remember watching the movie. 

Maybe I''ll have the North/South quilt done by next time - I changed my mind and decided to handquilt it.  But that one is staying with me, so I can take my time in finishing.  And I started my Spring cross stitch - lilacs.  Hoping your adding some sewing for pleasure time. 

Sewingly Yours,

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Seasons' Traditions

I have officially put away the tote of seasonal fabric.  Enough!  I admit it - I have a hard time creating with Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas fabrics.  The thought of something being used 1 or 2 weeks (maybe for the day) with all that hard work into it - it is like burning a Picasso.  Well, that's a little extreme, but you get the point.

As a member of the Charming Girls' Quilt Club - it is time for a new theme and monthly goals.

  A lot has changed since my children have grown and moved on and some with own families.  When they were little every room was filled with decor, mostly their own little creations.  Now Thanksgiving only gets a table topper with a small vase of flowers. I no longer put up a Christmas tree, but decorate the mantel with some sort of theme of handmade wares.  And it will be the first year to share the new tradition of working on my Christmas Village with my grandson.

You won't find recipes here as I don't bake - be thankful.  Large dinners are usually done with me doing the roast, turkey, or ham with everyone else bringing their own specialty part of the meal.  This is a real stress and time reliever on everyone.  And we usually have our holiday meal together the day before or the day after so everyone can spend the Holiday with their own family.  Again a stress and time reliever.

Special outings were back with the kids - school plays and concerts, caroling, and Santa Visits.  Now my big planned event is Black Friday at my LQS for free FQ's for Food Items - help the local food pantries benefit.  I'm not a "Mall" person and when you need a wheelchair for those trips, the holiday crowd just doesn't make it pleasant.

Tips and tricks for de-stressing the Holidays.  As said before, we share the preparation of the meal.  I work on gifts thru the year and really try to finalize by the end of Oct. - I want to enjoy the last 2 months of the year.  Yes, don't hate me, my Christmas shopping and making is done - even all my on-line swaps are done and waiting for mailing.

A funny Holiday story - there are a lot, but I love when my youngest went to Santa Visit when he was in Kindergarten.  This wasn't his first, but when he sat on Santa's knee and heard him speak - the look!  He immediately de-bearded Santa and yelled across the room to me  - "Mama, you never told me Santa was my school bus driver".

Goals for November and December:
Finish quilt tops and try not to start anything new.  I have packed up a lot of tubs and re-organized to start the New Year fresh.  I have a new grandson due early Dec., so I will be spending time with my daughter's family.  And I want to be sure I spend extra time with my MOM (who lives in the other half of my house) as this will be her first year alone during the holidays - DAD pass earlier this year.

Yes, sewing for enjoyment with no deadline, sharing time with family, having time to put ones feet up and watch some old movies of the season.  Ahhhhhhh

Sewingly Yours,

Monday, November 1, 2010

Sweet November

I was changing the potpourri in the shop - sweet apple and cinnamon and the movie "Sweet November" popped into my head.  Remember Charlize Theron played Sara, the crazy woman, and Keanu Reeves played Nelson, the workaholic.  She gives him 30 days (November) to "change" his life.  Funny, crazy, and the need for the tissue box.

I  have to tame the X-mas scrap tote, so have been playing with seasonal fabric instead of quilting up tops.  A mini tree wallhanging  ( that will probably be my focal over the mantel, the mini santa ( I will mail to my grandson, and the ornaments are for secret santa swaps.

And I pulled another scrap quilt top "North & South" (Life on the Bayou - Susan-Patchkat) and that is next in line for machine quilting

Enjoy your Sweet November,
Sewingly Yours,