Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Want to join a crazy quilt challenge group?

In reading some of my usual blogs that start my mornings....i came across a group that is starting a crazy quilt challenge for 2012. it is the crazy quilt joint project. i signed up....i think you should, too.

There are already dozens of people from around the world signed up and ready to start. you basically agree to make a crazy quilt block every month during 2012 and show your work. the block has to be at least 6x6". i think it will be loads of fun. think of all the blocks you will see from other entries. you will get new ideas and probably try new techniques. besides....what's one more obligation for the year....right?  you don't have to sleep that much anyway.

Come register and join the fun.


See you there


With a day to spare...

I got my November UFO Challenge quilt finished. i meant to do a custom job on it but just didn't have the time. so it got a panto instead. it's a queen size...about 86 x 100 inches.

In case you didn't know...the pattern is a carpentar star. the top was pieced by someone from MQR. i bought the top and backing from her a couple years ago when she was selling some of her quilt tops. anyone want to 'fess up?  i can't remember who i got it from.

I really like the blue and yellow together....it is so bright.

I like the way she added the stripes on the top and bottom to make it rectangular. i much prefer that to a square quilt.

The back is a soft warm yellow.

This panto is called ruffles but it always looks like moose antlers to me. LOL

Now my November obligations are done....and with only 1 day left to the month...that is a good thing. actually, i should have had my sister's quilt finished, too....but that will have to wait till December. injuries kept me out of the studio this month

So far, i have 6 lined up for December....and it was supposed to be a slow month...for me...but that never seems to work out. and i will start the month out by going out of town for a few days.

Do we quilters EVER stay on schedule?  i find it hard to do that.


Thursday, November 24, 2011

November Monochromatic Challenge

Yay...i DID get my November monochromatic challenge finished in time. i was worried there for a while. just got the binding on it last night. This month was black and white and one color. i chose yellow. most of the fabrics are from the Mellow Yellow collection. it's an eye opener.

It's about 86" x 92"....good for the couch. i cut out the flower designs with my AccuQuilt and fused them on.

I've had these fabrics for a little bit...so this was the perfect quilt for them.

I love the striped binding. It got quilted with yellow thread...top and back...with a panto. nothing much was going to show anyway.

The backing is fabric i had on a bolt that seemed a good fit. it is black and white and gray.

Now i'm going to see if i can squeeze in my other November challenge in the few days i have left in this month. first i have to do a quilt for my sister. wish me luck.


Aunt Sophie's Flower Baskets

This is a customer quilt....pieced with flower baskets from my Aunt Sophie inheritance....she made it a very vibrant, happy quilt. it is huge at 100x100".

This one has been on and off my frame throughout the month of November. health issues caused me to take a longer time than usual to get it done.

Laurie used some bright colors to bring this all together....matching all the colors in the flowers.

I matched my threads to the fabric colors

Lots of feathers and swirls

Great job, Laurie.

We kept all the thread colors on the back, too. the blue part actually shows better on the back. i have to learn to not match my threads so closely so they can be seen better.

Therapy is helping and i can now be on my feet for longer periods, so i hope i'll be in the studio more.


Saturday, November 19, 2011


Lately i have been so disjointed. i am still experiencing pain in my knee...almost constantly...and that sort of rules you. hard to concentrate on something that needs brain power. so i've been flitting between things.

The last few days i have worked on my neutral crazy quilt some more. here is a block i finished last night.

This side has silk ribbon flowers, another attempt at the fly stitch with the brown silk ribbon, some Xs with a gray crewel yarn, and a knot stitch with gold crewel yarn. i also put some french knots in the circles with the gold crewel yarn. you might be able to notice from the photo above that i did the french knots in decreasing knots. first row is 4 turns, next row 3 turns, etc.  

Here i made up a seam decoration with the gray silk ribbon .... i made 3 leaves and then went back with a pale yellow silk ribbon and put another smaller leave over the middle gray one and put a 3 turn french knot also.   and you can see the circles with french knots better here, too.

Here i stitched down a piece of lace with some white embroidery thread and put french knots in the middle of the lace flowers. it didn't show up much so i added the yellow crewel yarn onto the lace flowers. and did another seam in brown crewel yard. it's just a mish-mash of stitches i made up. LOL

Don't know how much more time i will spend on this....i am feeling bored with it. will probably stick with it for a couple more weeks....as long as our class is doing silk embroidery....then it will go back in the box to rest for a bit.

I did pull out another UFO that has been in a box for several years. all the pieces were cut out so i decided to start to piece some of it together. it's a good sit down job. the pattern is called Father's Fancy and is found in Judy Martin's book Scraps. i am doing it in several reds and whites.

So far i have pieced all the long strips and am working on the short ones. usually i work on this when i am taking a break from standing at the longarm or waiting for the embroidery machine to finish up with something. i am making this a queen size....so it will take a while....there are LOTS of pieces.

And speaking of the embroidery machine...i am embroidering polar bears for my sister. they are from the Anita Goodesign CD called Polar Brigade. there are 9 of them. So far i have bear #1...

And bear #2...

Here is a close up.....these are cross stitch....with the embroidery machine. awesome....

My sister gave me denim to stitch them on and they are looking good. i am making the largest bears...they are approximately 7x9".

And yet another UFO is being worked on at the house. i started this several years ago,  got bored, and put it in a box.  (what else is new..LOL)

The blocks are quite large...25" square. i cut out the triangles with the AccuQuilt....using up some dark reds, purples, blues and browns. the star in the middle is selvages.

The pattern is in Karen Griska's book Quilts from the Selvage Edge.  her original pattern has the actual star being 'around' the little star that i have here. it takes up the whole space. so far, i have 7 blocks made....some of them with her original large star....a couple with this little star....with is actually the inside of the large star. i have 2 blocks to go. i felt the quilt needed 9 blocks. i won't tell you about the last blocks yet....i'll show you when i finish it all.

I have to finish up all my selvage quilts and get them quilted up. i have a trunk show and class in February and have to get my act together. this is the second guild i have done a selvage show for....it's lots of fun.

So, i have been sort of busy. i'm going to try and get some quilting done today. the owner of the quilt on my frame is coming over on Tuesday to discuss her NEXT quilt and i would like to have this one finished to give to her. i have a good 2 days worth of quilting to go...so i need to get after it.


Thursday, November 17, 2011

42 years ago today

Today is my son's birthday. Happy Birthday Larry.

Gosh, it doesn't seem like 42 years ago he was born. 42 YEARS....that's a long time.

He was such a good kid. well, except when he took the telephone apart, took the doorknob apart in his room, took the screws out of the coffee table legs, etc....but he was just a little kid then. we lived through it.

He was such a good kid.  well, except when he skipped school, and 'forgot' to come home on time, and brought home snakes and squirrels and dogs that needed help, etc....but he was just a kid then. we lived through it.

He was such a good kid. well, except when he got that first tattoo, and got his ear pierced, and snuck out his bedroom window to meet girls, etc....but he was a teenager then. we almost didn't live through it. LOL

But now....he is all grown up and on his own....with a wife....and kids....and a job...and 800 miles away in Texas.

But he comes back to visit occasionally. and plays the good son.

Or pretends to be a badass. by the way....there are many more tattoos now. sigh!!

He has come home to help us on the farm throughout the years. i loved this time.....we were trying to get the cattails out of the pond. hahahahaha first he tried waders...messy. then there was a snake and he scrambled pretty fast out of that pond. then we tried the boat. LOL we wound up having the pond drained and made bigger and that took care of all the cattails. poor Larry

Then there was the time he came to help us insulate the cellar ceiling so the floors above in the house would be warmer. that was a fun, itchy time. poor Larry

And the time i decided we needed a fence around the garden/orchard area. it was hot....he brought his boys with him and it all got done. but it was a hot, tiresome job. poor Larry

But there was some fun, too. he got to ride the hills in the 4-wheeler. here he is with his oldest son.

He is married to the sweetest, nicest girl i have ever met. a Texas girl.....who always says ma'am and sir. LOL makes me feel old. i just love that girl and am glad they got married. they got married on a float trip....how cool was that!

Doesn't seem like 42 years already.....guess that makes me old. LOL

But he's my son....my baby boy.....my favorite son.

Happy Birthday Larry

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Silk ribbon embroidery

We are learning some silk ribbon embroidery at class these days. i am working on a crazy quilt heart that will be the center of a neutral crazy quilt.

This might help to see it a bit better.

There is a white ribbon that i couched down with lazy daisy stitches.

And some gold lazy daisy stitches here. i think i will add some flowers of french knots with this.

This is one of the blocks. i did a yellow rose with leaves. i made the foundation of the rose a bit too large....you weave under and over the foundation to make the rose. i ran out of yellow ribbon so i put leaves over the foundation stitches that were sticking out. LOL    hey...i'm new at this.

And above the rose are some petals with a french knot in the middle of it.

We did these little rosebuds with leaves.  which are actually a lazy daisy stitch, too.  easy enough but i can't seem to get them all the same size.

And under those you see a white curvy line that is just a stem stitch.  nothing exciting.

But it is kind of fun and i like it. it takes a bit of time though. and finger dexterity. last night i worked on an aster...you have to use a needle in your other hand to hold the ribbon flat to pull it properly through the fabric. it takes a little getting used to. i need a third hand.

I don't know how these stitches will hold up on a quilt that will be put in a washing machine so i guess i better now get too fancy with it.

On another note.....we got a 'new to us' stove the other day.

The oven on our old stove finally died and it wasn't cost effective to fix it. but we have had this old stove for 10 years....and we bought it used at a yard sale for $50. so it has lasted well. it is now sitting outside waiting for a guy to come pick it up and junk it.

Here is the new one. to me...it LOOKS even older than the first one....not sure. we got it used for $125 from someone who converted to an electric stove. hope this one lasts 10 years, too.

We had to change the conversion from natural gas to propane and adjust the flames down. but the oven works and dh can now have his biscuits. .. as you can see he left one on the top of stove. LOL 

Gotta go do some physical therapy today and visit Wally World. will check in with you again in a day or so.


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Piecing some tops

Since i can't stand long enough to be at the longarm i have been piecing stuff at home. that is really not a good thing.....since it will just add more tops to the quilting cabinet. but, what can i do......i can only nap so much in a day.

This is a take 5 pattern that is actually the challenge quilt for December. but at least it will be pieced....we'll see about the quilting.

It is just hanging over the picture taking frame. it is about 98x103. hopefully i can quilt it in time for december's challenge.

I also found some pieces of fabric all cut out in a box so i put those together, too. i think these fabrics were leftovers from another quilt.

I used a wild batik for sashing.

And the batik piece hanging next to it will be the binding. it's a good baby quilt size and bright.

I've worked on Dear Jane blocks, too, and have rows A through F finished and stitched together. i have about 6 row G blocks done, too.

Progress is slow on everything.....i take multiple naps during the day. the drugs keep putting me to sleep. i guess i can dream about quilting. LOL


Friday, November 11, 2011

November Monochromatic Challenge

This is my monochromatic challenge top for November. it was to be black and white and one other color. i chose yellow.  i had some fabrics and a pattern from Nancy Rink using the Mellow Yellow fabric line.

This one was fun but i am afraid i won't get it quilted this month because of the pain in my knee.

This will be the binding when i get the top quilted.

I have too many quilts scheduled for November and i'm afraid none of them will get done. not a good thing but all i can do with a bum knee.

But hopefully i will catch up soon.

Say a little prayer for me to the physical therapy gods so they can fix me up soon.


I'm in pain

The Duck has done me in. LOL

While trying to pry plywood off a porch wall last Friday at the Duck, i pinched a nerve in my back. you don't have to try that....just take my word for it....it hurts...BAD!  doc says it is the sciatic nerve. it runs from the back....down the outside of the butt...down the outside of the thigh...to the knee. it can also go to the leg and foot....but mine stopped at the knee.

Monday i got 2 hip xrays and 4 knee xrays.

Tuesday Doc says hips have arthritis....i knew that. doc says knees are ok. but i get 3 prescriptions...an anti inflammatory; a muscle relaxer; and a narcotic for pain. i don't really get any pain relief from these....but the narcotic knocks me out for a few hours. so i am pain free then but am not awake to enjoy it. sucks!

Wednesday i get 5 back xrays.

Thursday i go to physical therapy. the therapist works on my back...she says i am not aligned. my back has not hurt through any of this. but she says there are 2 discs in my back that have severe arthritis and seem to be fusing themselves together. and the 2 dics above and 2 below are out of alignment. and the pelvis is turned. how come none of that hurts?  but she realigns me and pronounces my back better.

She also tells me that my hip is twisted and my kneecap is stuck and not where it should be. she pushed and pulls on my leg and sort of fixes the hip. when she tries to mess with the knee i just scream with pain. she put me on a leg press machine to loosen up the muscles. then i get back on the table and she adjusts some more.

She never got the kneecap back where it belongs. she says i cannot relax enough for her to do it. but relaxing in pain is really hard for me. so my homework is to walk straight and don't limp; walk as much as possible; and try and move the kneecap around to see if it can center itself.

I go back Monday....in fact every Monday, Wednesday and Friday for the next few weeks. i hope she can give me some relief from this knee thing. i cannot do anything in pain.

Although i have been piecing when i can....there won't be any quilting going on around here for some time. and my demolition days at the Duck are over for the year.

But don't give up on me....i'll be back. in the meantime i'll just have to show you things that i have pieced rather than quilting.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A little bit of Duck progress

Since the majority of demolition on the Duck is completed....it seems like progress is really in baby steps these days. but i hadn't been out there in almost 2 months so that didn't help. but this weekend i had a few plans.

First off....i finished pulling off the rest of the red asphalt shingles from the top walls of the back porch. it is now ready for paint scraping and new paint.

And i replaced the brown paper that i had on the windows that face the street with actual curtains. they are not exciting but are a step above the ghetto paper that i had in the windows. LOL

My sister tells me that i am the only person she knows that has curtains but no walls. hey....it might be a new fashion statement. LOL 

I also pulled down the wood that had boxed in the area above the kitchen cabinets.

It makes the room seem larger. i might want to put something decorative up there....don't know yet. they also boxed in the area above these windows...which is above the sink....so that had to go, also.

And there was a cabinet in this corner....a small one all by its lonesome and i decided i didn't need that there, either. it limited the height of the counter space under it. so it came down, too.

Now there is just more plaster that i have to knock down off that wall up there....but that is ok. i can do that.

I did get my carpenter out on Saturday and he put in my other 4 windows and the last door i had to install.

Here are the bedroom new windows with their new curtains. this faces the side where i have actual neighbors and i figured they might like looking at curtains instead of brown paper and pieces of paneling...covering broken windows.

I got the door put up between the kitchen and the garage. we closed up the old door opening and moved it over into a more accessible spot. here it is looking from the kitchen.

The steps going down to this door are 3 steps that are very high...like about 12 inches. i am going to take them out and put in 4 steps....which will be more user friendly. they will go closer to the door but that is ok with me. at least my short legs will be able to get UP the steps.

Here it is from the garage side.

The old door used to be on the right....now covered by the piece of plywood. to the right of the plywood is a hole that goes into the basement....that will be covered up. you can still see the old red asphalt shingles on part of the wall. those will come off, too.

So, i have new doors and windows....and curtains.....but no walls. LOL

There probably won't be much more progress till spring. got to save some money. then the plan is:

1. electricity
2. blown in insulation in outside walls
3. moving inside walls to make new walls
4. batt insulation for inside walls
5. save more money LOL

In the 'save more money' stage i can be scraping paint from doors and woodwork in preparation for prettiness.

My yard guy did take out the bushes from the front of the house for me....and some stumps from trees and bushes. so the yard is looking cleaner, too.

In my attempt to tear out more plywood on the walls of the back porch i pulled something and had to stop. i got xrays yesterday of hip and knee but probably need to go back for an MRI. believe it to be nerve damage. dang it.....it just get healed up from surgery and have to lay around again to heal up again. i need a younger body. good thing winter is coming....it is easier to lay about when the weather is bad outside. but there won't be any standing and quilting for a bit, either.



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