Sunday, June 30, 2013

The Great Adventure Continues

Only those are fit to live who do not fear to die; and none are fit to die who have shrunk from the joy of life and the duty of life. Both life and death are parts of the same Great Adventure. 
Theodore Roosevelt

It has been a busy month.  One filled with all parts of the Great Adventure we call life.   I'm looking forward to a new month starting tomorrow and making progress on a long list of projects and chores that have been neglected by my attention and presence being required in other places.  

Family matters demanded attention and time.  There was time to visit with the newest one.  There was time to visit with all my siblings at the same time, which doesn't happen but a couple of times a year.  There was time spent with the in-laws which rarely happens but was bittersweet.

Father's Day WeekendHe's growing so fast!

This was my view the week of the 20th while Mr. CPA took CPE classes.  I kept my sewing machine humming along as I worked on piecing the blocks below.

Hotel View

Blocks made

Now to plan the setting

Last Wednesday we were looking at flowers but not the arrangements you take pleasure in seeing.  My Mother-in-Lay is in a much better place now.  Alzheimer's is an awful disease!


We got home Thursday and Friday I had to run errands and buy food.  The fridge was pretty bare since I had not stocked anything since well before leaving on our first trip out of town.  So we now have food and I only have one errand to do so far this week so I plan on getting some quilting done.  Time for a lot of fabric therapy!  Progress will be made on the piecing and quilting list!  Hopefully I'll find a little time for blogging too!  There is a cuddle session planned on the Fourth with the grand kids too!  Mr. CPA and I need some extra hugs and kisses for making it through June. 

So on with the Great Adventure in a new month and the beginning of the second half of the year!  More details about what's coming in July soon!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Pulled in Many Directions

Brains aren't designed to get result; they go in directions. If you know how the brain works you can set your own directions. If you don't, then someone else will. 
Richard Bandler

I have been pulled in many directions this week, running here for this and there for that.  It will be a while before things calm down.  Sigh.  My Mother in Law has been moved to a hospice care facility, I am going to spend sometime with my siblings today (we are seldom all together).  I have been trying to get my guest room sorted out moving furniture around and there are other things going on that require attention too like my daughters both have birthdays this week and Sunday is Father's Day.

So, needless to say there has been little done on the quilting front.  I have managed to get a few sessions in at the longarm and I will be done with a baby quilt next time I can get there for about 20 minutes.

I thought I'd take a few minutes to mention that I added the Bloglovin button on my sidebar a few weeks ago.  Google Reader will be going away at the end of the month.  You can also subscribe to the blog by email or using other reader services.  

I found a post on Sew Cal Gal a few weeks ago that lists some other options.  I have been trying out several of them but still haven't made up my mind as to which I prefer.  I'll do a comparison later when I make up my mind.

Good News!  I did get to spend a little time cuddling with the new Grandson this past weekend.  Newborns sleep too much to be much fun but he sure is sweet and a good baby too.

What reader are you going to use to keep you with the blogs you follow?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Flowers at My Feet

The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life.
Robert Louis Stevenson

It's been a rainy year so far in my part of the world.  The grass and flowers have taken off after a slow start from a cooler than usual spring.  Mr. CPA is in charge of the yard but likes my input on where and sometimes how to do things.  Having been raised on a farm growing things was part of daily life for me but for my Army brat husband it has been a learning process over the years.

I was surprised when he came up with an idea for using something again.  Do you remember this?  The long box contained the 12 foot long roller bars and frame pieces for my Innova.

Well now it is going to be holding something else.  Hopefully it will last a few years.

It has been painted and filled with potting soil to make a flower box at the base of the deck.
How's that for re-using something?  Hopefully the flowers that go into it will add some beauty to the yard.  Here are some of the lilies that are blooming in front of it now.

This is some of the flowers on the hydrangea bushes now.  They have grown so much!  I'll have to get a picture of the whole bushes tomorrow, if it stops raining.

No pictures of quilty things today but I have made a little progress on a few things.  I am practicing my free motion skills with the longarm on a baby quilt panel.  Pictures will come after it is finished because it is full on blue markings right now.  At my two monthly quilt group meetings, yesterday and today, I also worked a little on my Scrappy Trips and finished piecing the units for my new Churn Dash quilt I cut out last month.  Now the blocks need to be assembled.

I've been trying to make up my mind about furniture for our spare bedroom this week.  I found some that I like but I'm not sure how it will fit in the room.  Decisions, decisions, and I have to live with the consequences.   Maybe you can help me decide.

If you were furnishing a room for guests would you do 2 twin beds, bunk beds or a daybed with a trundle?  OR Would you just put in a double bed?  (Queen is not an option.)

OR If you have to stay at someone else's home for a visit which of the above would you rather get to sleep on with/without your spouse?

Sunday, June 2, 2013

June Goals

If you're bored with life -- you don't get up every morning with a burning desire to do things -- you don't have enough goals. 
Lou Holtz

It's June already!  Time to set a few goals and review May, it was a busy month but I did get a few things done. Yeah!

I finished TWO bed size quilts that and been waiting patiently for binding for way too long.  Nothing like procrastination.  You've already seen the pictures but I'll let you see them again.  

Calico Mystery

The Sunny Side

Goals for May were:
  1. Finish Hand Stitching Binding on Mystery Quilt - DONE
  2. Get the Baby Blanket Finished (and the tutorial written) - NO PROGRESS
  3. Get the Top done for the Grandson's Quilt - He's here - QUILT NOT DONE YET
  4. Spend some QUALITY TIME with my new INNOVA!!! - NOT NEARLY ENOUGH
  5. Get a quilt selected and finished for the Blogger's Quilt Festival - DONE
  6. Make progress on a few Charity Quilts - TWO CUT OUT, ONE BEING QUILTED
So progress was made on the list, still more to get done.

Goals for June:
  1. Get the Baby Blanket Finished (and the tutorial written) 
  2. Get the Top done for the Grandson's Quilt 
  3. Spend MORE QUALITY TIME with my new INNOVA!!!
  4. Get at least one Charity Quilt Quilted
  5. Make progress on piecing a Charity Quilt
  6. Quilt and Bind Log Cabin Quilt
  7. Quilt Turning 20 Quilt

I will be on the road for almost a week soon but I will be sewing while I'm gone.  The grandson's quilt project will be going with me and I should get the top done.  

Now for a peek at what's in the yard now.  We picked up 3 of these great yellow Calla Lily plants last week and Mr. CPA got them planted. Aren't they gorgeous?  He works so hard in the hard.  I'll share another project he has been working on soon as well as more flowers.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

A Calico Finish

God gave man the challenge of raw materials -- not the ease of finished things. He left the pictures unpainted and the music unsung and the problems unsolved, that man might know the joys and glories of creation

What would you pair with this calico print?

I know, not the most beautiful fabric in town, but how about these two?

Many quilters have purged their stashes of all their older and more common fabrics from years gone by.  I still have a pile of calico prints.  I vacillate at times between keeping them or donating them to a charity group.  Yet I still find myself pulling them from time to time to use in different projects.  The new projects I shared this week contain some of them, these will end up being charity quilts and I think they will have some charm.  They may not be as stunning as a quilt made with the best and newest fabrics available but I'm sure they will still be a source of comfort and warmth in the finished project.

I have had finishing the binding on this mystery quilt on my 'to do' list for several months now.  This is mainly because I was tired of having to move it around from place to place in my studio where it has been for several years since it was quilted.  I was determined that I would get it finished in May so that I could be done with it!  I persisted this week and I finished it!   

This was a New Year's Day Mystery by Dorthy Young a few years back.  She has a yahoo group A Pocket Full of Mysteries and does just a few mysteries each year.  She is a good designer and writes excellent patterns.

When I decided to do the quilt I was in a use up the old stuff and get it out of the stash mood.  I had yardage of the calico and pin-dot and enough of the bright aqua for the bed size quilt.  I haven't measured it exactly but it is about 86" x 76".  I got the top finished within a few weeks and it went into my 'to be quilted' lineup.

A few years ago I had a quilt to do for a friend.  It was a lovely Martha Washington block set on point in a strip quilt setting.  I got brave enough to try some custom quilting on it.  I had not done any ruler work with my old longarm because it didn't have needle down or stitch regulation.  I decided I'd try it anyway and this quilt had the same size blocks and I would practice my design on it first.

Block quilting

Border quilting


I had to draft the setting triangle and corner square patterns from the block pattern.  They turned out fine.  The problem was the machine and the fact that I used a stiff, thick poly batting that fought me especially on the ditch quilting.  Can you tell I'm a little critical of my work?  It comes from my Mother who made me redo my skirt hems when the stitches showed when I was learning to sew in grammar school.  

I learned a lot by doing this quilting and the friend's quilt turned out pretty good.  One thing I learned was that ruler work would be easier on a better longarm!  I'll be trying that soon on my new Innova.

The reason it had not been bound was because there were some lines of over stitching where I had gone back to make the stitch in the ditch better.  I was totally frustrated with it for a long time.  Now I have made peace with it and it's DONE.  I now look at it and see a good learning experience and a heck of a lot of decent quilting.  Sure there's a few bobbles hear and there but so what?  It was from some of my cheapest stash fabric and once I wash it and it softens up it will be fine.  It will be donated at some point soon.  I'll add a full back and front picture after it's washed.

Do you have any old calico prints in your stash?  Do you plan to use them or get rid of them? How do you think this quilt turned out?  Be honest, you won't hurt my feelings on this one. LOL

I'm linking this SECOND BED SIZE FINISH for May with:

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