Monday, December 31, 2012

What Kind of Year are You Planning

2012 has only a few hours left and

then we find ourselves at the beginning of a brand new year.

I have been blessed in so many ways this past year, 
two sweet grand babies, a new son-in-law, 
the opportunity to help my daughters as they work at
balancing family and careers and, of course,
having Running Man by my side.

Even with my busy nanny days,
I have been fortunate to find time to 
sew, quilt, and create.
But my sew area has suffered 
and any kind of maintenance or attempt to stay organized
has failed.

January always brings organizational 
suggestions from every direction.
And I agree it is a good time to start fresh.

Remembering the words of Lao-Tze:

My goal is to have a SUPER sewing year 
 by follow these steps:

I like little gimmicks to keep me on task.

So with that 
I walked onto my studio to survey and reclaim my space.
Next time I'll share what I saw 
when I stood in the doorway and looked around.
Don't be afraid!

Until Next Time-

Friday, December 21, 2012

Happy Holidays

 Wishing you 

 a very Merry Christmas!

 Happy Holidays,

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Holiday Cupcakes

 With Christmas less than a week away,
the co-workers were like little kids
waiting for Santa and his sleigh.

"When are you making cupcakes?" they all asked
with a lot of chatter.

So we  sprang from our beds,
and whipped up some batter.

 A chocolate cupcake 
with a peppermint buttercream
is what we had planned.

With a peppermint cream cheese filling,
so it was not going to be bland.

The finishing touch:
 a sprinkle of crushed peppermint and
 a small bit of  bark

It was just what was needed to 
give it a spark.

Then the  co-works all exclaimed
as the treats were arranged,

"What a perfect way to end this year
 your holiday cupcakes
have given us good cheer."

Until Next Time-

Monday, December 17, 2012

Am I Done?

 I had a marathon sew in this weekend.

I was determined to get the last
5 blocks 
of the  Just Takes Two
red and white sampler done

Which I did.

and sew the 4 sections together.

Which I  didn't finish.

Here's the top partially sewn together.
The last seam kind of stairsteps across the width of the quilt.
I need to make sure I have plenty of time
to tackle that.


At this point my quilt top measures
74" x 92"

I leaning towards adding about a 2" border
of the Kona Snow around the entire quilt.


To keep all those seams on the outer edge from
starting to unravel.

I think, even if I stay stitched around the outer edge,
some of those seams might give way.

Hopefully, over Christmas vacation I can:
finish sewing the top together,
clip a gazillion threads on the back,
do one more bit of redwork,
sew the backing together
and baste it together.

  Here's what I chose for the backing.
I wanted something fun and cheerful to go with the busy top.

I'm actually planning on
hand quilting this quilt just so I can
individualize each block.

It's been a long project.
And I'm glad the sewing is just about finished.

But I'm a long way from still being done!

Until Next Time-

Friday, December 14, 2012

It's Still Fall

Technically  it's still fall,
that is until December 21 and
the Winter Solstice.

So that means I can still 
work on a "fall quilt" and
not feel odd about doing it.

 That's my goal,
 to finish appliqueing the center section
of Midnight Silhouette.

With 21 pieces left to stitch,
I have to only do three pieces per day.

Pretty reasonable even
with my two junior helpers.
Wish me luck!

Until Next Time-

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Can you guess where
 Running Man and I escaped to
this past weekend?

 Not a restful quiet place

Not an inexpensive place

A Foodies paradise at
Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill
Totally unique shopping

 Las Vegas!

We went with some friends who enjoy

the NFR, 
the National Finals Rodeo.

Running Man and I also found time to
walk along the Strip.

That's an experience.

Of course, one of the best things to watch,
other than strange people,
are the fountains at the Bellagio.

The fountains danced to the Star Spangled Banner and Andre Bocelli,

 And at night to "We Wish You A Merry Christmas".

I saw only 4 Elvis's.

Tasted some great food.
Missed the buffets.

It was my first trip,
and probably my only one.

But it was totally entertaining.
The glass sculptured ceiling in the lobby of the Bellagio.

Until Next Time-

Monday, December 10, 2012

Tis the Season

This holiday season is different for me,
because I'm not home during the week and
because none of my children will be home for Christmas.

So I have limited my decorating to 
accenting with a few holiday quilts.

This quilt is from the book
Tis the Season
by Jeanne Large and Shelley Wicks.

"High Strung"
46" x62"

I had orginally made it as a store sample and 
we had so many appropriate green flannels that 
we decided to kit it.

It was "warmly" recieved and sold out instantly.
That always made me feel good when other quilters
loved the fabrics that I chose for a kit.

This year we may not have many stockings actually
hung on the fireplace,
but a few special quilts
it will help give my home a holiday spirit boost.

Until Next Time-

Friday, December 7, 2012

Red and Green

One of the categories
of quilts that I love are the
the classic red and green appliques.

They are beautiful any season of the year,but
speak of Christmas especially during the holiday season.

Many years ago,
a group of my Quilting Buddies
decided we each need to make a
red and green applique quilt.
We each found a pattern we loved
and started stitching.

I chose this one called Love Apples.

"Love Apples"
99" x 99"

The blocks are 26 inches.
I used only 3 different fabrics 
and Kona Snow as the background.
It's as basic as you can get.

I quilted it with a basic grid pattern as a filler,
around the appliques and a small amount on the appliques 
to add a little detail.

 I used both masking tape and a hera marker to create the grid,
so I didn't have to deal with pencil lines later.

A hera marker is not a marker like you might think.

It's a hard piece of plastic, in this case,
with a curve to allow you to apply pressure and
create a narrow indented line that
you can quilt over.
I love to mark a quilt without "a mark".

I had always wanted to do a swag border.
So I decided that this quilt was going to be the one.

There was math involved,
but it wasn't too hard to adjust the length of each
swag to make it fit perfectly
and to go around the corner.

It's one of my favorite quilts,
both during the holidays and
anytime of the year.
"Happy Holidays"

Until Next Time-

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

More Red and White Blocks

The final section of the 
Just Takes Two blocks was just published.

So I still have 5 more blocks to make,
but at this point there have been
95 blocks.
 With the end in sight,
I've got most of the blocks for section 4 completed.

 As always there have been some challenging blocks.
 I hand pieced this and decided to use it
as a signature block with my initials.

 I've continued to add
the redwork to the blocks

These last two are the ones
I finished this week in between
naps, bottles, stroller rides, and diaper changes

With only 5 more blocks to go,
and sewing the 4 sections together,
the decision now is
borders or no borders.

I'll have to think about that.

Until Next time-

Monday, December 3, 2012

Butterfly wings

Last weekend we visited a local nursery
to  see Santa's reindeer,
 Everdeen and Jessica

look at festive holiday decorations,

 Sanford and Elizabeth

and to get into the holiday spirit.
Kate, Bobby and Everdeen

But we had a unexpected sweet surprise.
A little butterfly fluttered over to greet us.
She stayed for quite a while.
Everdeen and I listened for a whisper

Then watched as it flew
 from flower to flower

It was a quiet gentle moment.
And reminded us not to forget the
special meaning of Christmas.

Until Next Time-