Monday, July 8

New Purse for Me!

For quite some time, I have said I was going to make myself a new purse, well I finally did it!
 

Back
front
 
This is the Quattro Pattern from Studio Kat Designs.  It has side pockets between the orange and green colors.  Behind the center orange piece with the embroiderd applique initial is a pouch you can enter from either side.  One the back there is a zipper pocket.  The top closer has a full zipper as well.
There isn't any pockets inside but a great deal of room for lots of stuff!   I have the Encore Insert pattern to make yet for several pockets and zipper pockets.
I really like this Quattro pattern!  It was fairly easy to follow the instructions except for one part.
That I believe was my inability to understand completely!
 
 
 
 

Quilted Sunshine


Recently our weather has been rain, rain, and just a bit more rain everyday.  This is not the normal weather for June in North Carolina.  We are not the only ones with a great deal of rain though.  Sunshine is a rare thing for the past few weeks for more than a couples of hours a day. 

Well I decided to create my own sunshine this weekend. Makes me feel better just looking at it.
 
Actually this was started for The Quilting Board's July Doll Quilt Swap
This month's theme was a Self Portrait or Where your from.  I initially wasn't planning on doing anything but then do to a phone call at work one day this idea hit me.  

Since high school, off and on and by many different people, I have been called Sunshine. So when I answered the phone and heard "Hello Sunshine" it hit me... That could be my self portrait!  And it would also work for the "Where Your From" as I grew up in Florida, better know as the Sunshine State.  Although lately Florida has been rather rainey just like NC.
 
_____________________________________________________________
 
 
 
 
 

Monday, March 11

Not how to start a Monday!

I start out every day with a cup of coffee while sitting in the recliner with Riley, our 18lb Cavalier King Charles) and Zoe, our daughter's 30+lb Blue Healer.  That is our normal routine and if I should not complete this routine one day, it throws those dogs out of sync all day.   We also have a Blue Tick Coonhound (Rebel)  and a Chocolate Lab (Dixie) who sleep in the house at night just so they don't bark at every little rustling sound in the woods. 

This Monday, the first work day after the time change, I knew I would most likely be late to work as I am not always an early riser.  But little did I know, I would not even make it to work today. 

Rebel wanted to go outside earlier than normal and was quite excited.  So I opened the door then he Zoe and Riley all flew out the door, off the porch, and around to the back.   Rebel begin to bark out back near our chicken coop, like he had a coon or opossum treed.   I had not fed the chickens yet so I wrapped up in the quilt I had on my lap, put on boots and went out to see what was going on.

When I got back there, I realized that it looked like something had gotten into the chicken coop as feathers were everywhere.  The "girls" didn't even want to come out of their coop to eat.  Rebel was behind the coop howling and then I realized that another chicken had apparently flown out of the pen and into the dog pen next to it.  She was fine other than being scared.  

I left to get the two smaller dogs in the house and out of my way, and put a thick jacket on because  this chicken and Rebel both were in a area of dried briars!  OUCH!  Yes even with a jacket, gloves and pruning shears you can still get stuck!   By the time I got back, apparently the chicken stuck her head thru the chainlink fence and Rebel was trying to help pull her out.  Needless to say, she didn't survive.    I began trying to get Rebel back to the house by pulling on his collar.  Well.... he pulled out and turn to run away.  That's where thing went way wrong.

I turned quickly to try and catch him and my boot slipped on the wet grass/mud.  As I am falling I hear this loud POP.  My left leg went one way, my ankle another.    I am laying on the damp ground thinking "this ain't gonna be good".  Wondering if my ankle was broken, I tried to move my toes and yep they moved without much pain.  Then all of a sudden, I thought GET THE BOOT OFF  BEFORE IT SWELLS!  So I pulled it off quickly.  Of course I didn't have any socks on so my toes were cold but I could see the outside ankle bone area swelling already.

Being in the back yard, hubby inside, Lauren sound asleep, I'm wondering how the heck am I gonna get back to the front door. HECK, how am I gonna get up off the ground!   I managed to get to my knees and use an old post near by to get up on my good foot.  Luckily right beside me was several old handles from old shovels, so I used those a crutches.  I managed to get around to the front yard and the side door steps.  I sat down as I was give out by then and one of the old dried wooden handles was beginning to crack.  NOT GOOD!   I used one to beat on the door and got Lauren to wake up.  She come to the front door wondering what was going on.   She got her shoes on and helped me hobble on inside.   Luckily I had crutches from a long time ago when I step on a wood screw that was stuck in a board. But that is another story!

Lauren drove me to the doctors and the x-rays showed nothing was broken or fractured but pulled/sprained the ligaments.  All I know is that it's SMARTS!    So it is Ice and elevation for the next for days.  Doc said to use my pain as a guide. If is hurts to put weight on it ... dont!  It should take about 6 weeks to heal completely.  OH JOY!  The good thing IT IS NOT MY HANDS!  I can still use my good foot to drive and most importantly, the pedal on my sewing machine!

First thing on my new agenda, is to buy new boots to wear outside to feed, that have a good tread!


Sunday, February 10

The Perfect Thimble! (at least for me)

 
 
I have always had a hard time finding a thimble that would fit my finger,
that was comfortable and work.  Normally they are to tight, to loose, to hot, etc.
 
Well I finally found one that works Great!  and I made it myself!
 
Yep!  that's right!  I made my own using co-flex adhesive vetwrap.
Yes this is the same stuff you buy to wrap the legs on horses.
 

This is a 4" x 5yd roll I purchased for $1.29 at my local feed store.
That come in many colors and range in price up to about $2.
If you need a co-flex wrap for an medical need, buy vetwrap!
Some stuff as the high price wrap you but at drug stores!
 

 


Start with a piece about 4" x 2"
 
 
 
Lay your finger off to one side, nail down.
 
 
 
Wrap the short side around your finger and just tuck under a bit.
 
 
 
Fold over the top half.  This add thickness to protect the finger from needles pushing thru.
 

 
 
Wrap around your finger pulling just a bit to make it fit snug.
 
 
 
Press gently around the entire wrap to ensure it sticks to itself and to hug your finger.
 

 
You have just made your very own custom thimble for pennies!
It is reusale as well!
 

 
 
You can actually take off your thimble and it maintains it shape! You can continue to use the same thimble for awhile.
 
 
 
You can even make one for your thumb!  The texture of the wrap is great for gripping needles and pulling through the fabric.
 
 
 
I can't feel any sharp point or pain of the needle pressing into the 'Thimble Wrap"
BUT... I have total control when sewing.!
 
Hopefully you'll give this a try.  I don't think you'll regret trying it!
 
 


Sunday, August 12

Sanity Saver???

What is your Sanity Saver?

It's Quilting For me! Retreating to my sewing room, for any amount of time, is where I can let my mind relax and open to those creative moments that  flow from the brain to the fingertips. I forget all the day to day things such as work, laundry, bills,cooking, anything like that. As I enter my "playground" as I call it, and I feel as if I am walking into another world where there are no outside distractions. That is until the reality check hits when the hubby beckons, or the cats start hollaring or the dog wants out! 

Just being there with all the colors from my fabrics, threads and quilts on the wall, I feel at peace no matter what I felt like moments before.   Something about the calming effect of touching fabrics, the hum of my sewing machine.

Comfort, tranquil, therapeutic, relaxing, are all words that come to mind.  When I go into "the zone" it is a wonderful respite during this hectic life we all live. There is NO multi-tasking allowed when sewing. You have to focus on one thing at a time.  I am not the only who feels this way when it comes to quilting.   My favortie line is "Quilting is my Happy Thought!"    Here are a few comments, statesments and thought I have found from many others.....

I can go into the messyest sewing room, sit down by my machine with a cup of coffee and just sit there. I'm also at peace. LOL

I actually seem to go into withdrawels if I don't do something quilting related for several days in a row. Definitely my therapy of choice.

If I am away from my quilting for more than a few days, I go through withdrawal. It may be an expensive "hobby", but it's cheaper than counseling, and the end product can bring joy to others.
Maybe it's the sound of the machine. Or maybe it just takes my mind off the worries of the day.

Its funny how I can get such pleasure from some really basic things like that pefect crisp point, a beautifully pressed block.  The inspiration I get, makes me feel so much better have an hour or so to myself

I get lost and the brain goes into another sphere where thoughts are clear, heart is happy, no stress.

In my 'lady cave'  I can  picked up my needle and thread and I'm one happy camper!

Quilting feeds my soul and makes me feel complete.  

I ve realized recently that most everything about quilting brings me comfort.

Quilting stitched my life back together
It's the one place in our house that I am usually alone
Quilting is zen-like comfort.
Best therapy for whatever is bothering you.




My life's purpose!

Many days I would think and wonder what my purpose in this earth life was.  Was it just to be a wife and mother? Was it to be the preschool teacher I once was?  Was it my love of sewing and quilting? Or was it just to be here taking up space?

I used to watch the Oprah show with her many guests who had found their purpose in life and wonder "why can't I find mine?"  I almost felt like something was missing in my life because I wasn't sure about my "purpose".    Watching the last and final episode of Oprah that I had recorded for about the third time, I discovered what my purpose in life was!   What a relief that was !

To my amazement it really wasn't anything I had not already been doing for many years,  I  didn't know that  "just being me" was my purpose in life!   I know that sounds crazy but, hey that is who I am at times. Crazy, easy going, carefree, happy go lucky! 

I'm not quite sure how I realized this but it fits.  Like today, I came to work on this cool Monday morning, after waking up earlier than needed, with this happy sunny disposition!  I walked into the office and make sure I said "Good Morning" to everyone just as I always do.  I have always done that no matter where I have worked.  That's just me!  At my last place of employment and as well as where I am now, most didn't bother to acknowledge each other as they walk in or pass by.  That just drives me nuts!  So being me, I continue to say "Good Morning" and soon they all caught on!  Everyone said they never realized how much a simple thing could make them feel.

During my day, wether in person or on the phone, when I am asked "How are you today?" I have always answered with "Wonderful!"  and yes I say that with the exclamation mark!!!  and mean it!
It normally catches people off guard which changes they attitude right away, to the good!   Every once in a great while, I may hesitate before saying wonderful and then the other person asks, whats wrong?  Your not your normal self.

I am always the one that keeps a positive attitude no matter what the situation is or how bad it may seem.  Thus.... that helps the other person pick theirselves up or at least smile a little bit more and that lightens the mood, making a better day.     

I am proud to be a bright shiny bit of "Sunshine"  each day for others.    Never knew when I got tagged with the nickname "Sunshine" back in school, that that would be who I really am!!

Have a WONDERFUL Day!

Pillows

A co-worker is adding on to their home and building new bedrooms for their two kids.  The son's room will be blue and green with a sports theme.  The daugther's room will be pink and orange with a theme of peace signs that her daugther is in love with.  She has been searching online and at the stores for decor with the peace sign symbol.  I am amazed at how much stuff is really out there, since I grew up in the original "peace sign era". 

Here are a couple of pillows I made for "Kylie Renaye" to go in her new room.  Her mom sure did
like them so I am pretty sure Kylie will too!




My oldest daughter is often called "La La" since her actual name is Alana.  She called me one day to ask me to make a pillow for her like one she saw in a quaint little shop in Atlanta.  She sent me a picture and I used that to go by.   She should received it Monday, I hope she likes it!

Tuesday, March 13

99 cents Ebook! Good Read!!!

Hey Y'all Readers!




Here is a 99cents good read! Grow Old With Me by Melinda Evaul.

The story takes place in a little town called "Love Valley", NC. and YES there

really is such a place just north a few miles from where I live.

Love Valley is better known as the Cowboy Capital, where the streets are dirt,

and the only mode of travel is horses! NO CARS ALLOWED!



It was really neat for me when reading this because it mentions places I go all the time.

I felt like I was really there! My hometown of Statesville, NC is mentioned as well as

Charlotte, NC. Oh yea, my grocery store too, Food Lion! It is a Christian based book

so no violence, murders, or bad language! a plus for me!



Here is a brief of the book....

A modern day Beauty and the Beast meet in their fifties when a disfigured carpenter becomes a guest at a bed and breakfast in the western-style tourist town of Love Valley, NC.

Benjamin Pruitt plans to repair the town’s buildings before retiring to a solitary life. Sarah Campbell longs for freedom since her long task as caregiver has ended.

Can Benjamin and Sarah piece the tattered remnants of their lives into a beautiful design to warm their waning years?



Melinda Evaul and her husband enjoy traveling the back roads of North Carolina and Tennessee where rural culture and history are preserved through a unique art form—Quilt Barn Squares.

Come follow her adventures along the Quilt Trails of America in this series of novels.
She is working on her next book about a "barn quilt painter".



Sunday, March 4

Changed my mind!

I decided I didn't like my fabric choice that I posted the other day for the Quilt Story Series, especially after I received my layer cake, "Pattenista" by Benartex I purchased from Missouri Star Quilt Co thur their daily deals.  It has some bold, wild colors in some wild patterns.  But I love it!

Here is my first block for March - the nine patch.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

I also decided on the fabrics I will use for the Boomerang 7 Swap at the Quilting Board.
I am in a large group and will be swaping with 35 others so I a using two groups of fabrics.
The first one is yellow and lavender florals with pinks, oranges, and greens


The second group is blues and whites.  I have always wanted to do a blue/white only quilt.



Here is half of the blocks from the Boom 6 swap.  I have them on my design wall trying out
the sashing and blender blocks. 

Sorry for the bad lighting on this picture.  So far, I am pleased with it.  BUT... If I know me,
I'll end up changing my mind on this layout several times before it's done!




Tuesday, February 28

Quilt Story Block of the Month

I have once again signed up for another quilt-a-long series. 
I think I have become addicted to these type of projects. 

Starting in March 2012-March 2013, the hosts, at quiltstory.blogspot.com will have a new block to share on the first Monday of every month, and in the end a new quilt! Each month will have a "theme" we will follow, and we want you to join! Below is a type of block which will be included in our overall block. (ex. HST could be a block with any type of design including HST's)
Fabric Requirements for twelve 12" pieced blocks:


1/3 yard cuts of 2 different prints

1/2 yard cuts of 4 different prints

3/4 yards of a solid
 
Here are the fabrics I have chosen for this project.  I bought them at a quilt show not knowing what to do with them.  I still need a solid to go along with it  These are not normal fabric choices for me which should make this a bit more challenging.  The colors in person are much prettier. 
This has always seemed to be my favorite block, so it only seems right that
I start this series with the Ohio Star.


There is still plenty of time to join in on the fun!  Click HERE to get more details and sign up information.  You can follow the progress and view pictures of the blocks created by those playing along.

Monday, February 27

Yesterday's Daily Deal from Missouri Star Quilt Company was a 11" layer cake. The design was Patternista by Paula Nadelstern for Benartex. I believe they jokingly said something about if you like Pink Flyod you would love this deal!  Yes it does kind of remind you of the psycodelic era.   I had to buy it!  Here are a couple of the patterns in this line.



  I have no idea what I will do with 40 pcs of 11" squares in 25 different patterns/colors.  BUT...
I think one reason I felt like I had to purchase this, beside the fact it was on sale, was because it looks similar to a couple of designs my son drew.  I told him I thought it would make a great fabric print
Here is his designs.  I wanted to get some printed at the Spoonflower website, but just haven't




I am very proud on my son Nathan and all of his artistic talents! I hope he knows that!
Well if he reads this post, he will!  lol

Sunday, February 26

A few updates

Hello Everyone! 

It is a gorgeous Sunday afternoon here in NC.  Perfect temperature, Carolina Blues skys.  I gave our new puppy, Riley, his first bath today, ( or my first time giving him a bath)  Overall he seemed like he kinda liked it.  He is such a joy and a cutie!

Earlier today I was working on my latest project, My boomerang 6 quilt.  In an earlier post, I shared some of the blocks I received in this block swap from The Quilting Board.  I have enjoyed this swap so much, I have signed up for the Boom 7!  I'm gonna do a large group this time.  
I ordered some 1/4 yd pieces of fabric from Connecting Threads to try out for sashing and a repeat block.  It is really hard to see the true color of fabric on the internet.  The sashing I have decided on I purchased at my LQS and it looks kinda like old barn wood that is faded and stressed.  My blocks all have a western theme so I think that fits perfect.  Here is a picture of my blocks just layed out. 

I am at a stand still until I order more fabric!

Here is the finished quilt I did for my Sister in Law. I am really please how it turned out.





Monday, February 20

Swapping! Quilter's Style

I have found a real enjoyment in participating in different "swaps" with other quilter's that all have met through message boards and blogs on the "net".  I first started "swapping" at The Quilting Board and just recently found The Monthly Doll Quilters Swap from one of the blogs that I follow.   

I just joined up with Monthly Doll Quilters , a blog site I just happened to find, and it is just getting started. The first swap is April and the theme is "three colors". Partners will be assigned sometime in March.If your interested in participating, just click on the link and you'll be redirected to their site and you can check it out yourself.  Then, If you're willing, please help spread the word by writing a separate blog post directing potential members to the Doll Quilters Monthly blog.
Like the old saying...."Try it, you'll like it!"


I have met several super ladies through these swaps and we still keep in touch not just on the websites but by emailing and chatting with each other.  With the doll quilt swaps, I try to do something I haven't tried before.  The November swap I tried "cathedral windows" for the first time.  January I tried a "landscape" mini.  February, I did an applique.  Now for March I haven't decided what to do as it is sender's choice.
I may try a mini string quilt as I have wanted to do but just haven't had a good reason! 
All these were done at The Quilting Board.  I can't wait to see who I get partnered with for March and April.

Here are some of the ones I have created so far. And some of the ones I have received.