Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Leaf Season is Finished!

I had to take the picture outside in order to get a closer idea of the colors, and I had to stand in the sun, so there's a bit of a glare in the upper left corner. I am happy to have this top done! I hate putting borders on, but the borders add to this quilt, so I suffered through. It's not that they are difficult, and I didn't have any problems with them, it's just the measuring, cutting, pinning, sewing, pressing twice for each border -- just takes time and is boring I guess! The binding is made and a note attached with the information that this was Judy's design for an hour a day quilt and the date I finished the top. Who knows when I'll finish the quilt -- I haven't even decided whether I'll hand or machine quilt it -- and I need to finish a couple of other projects before Christmas, so it'll be stuck in the ufo pile for awhile.

Iwant to get started pulling fabric for Gratitude, but I need to clear off the sewing tables first, so we'll see!

1. Breakfast out with Bill.
2. Leaf Season top is finished and I like it!
3. Hershey's Kisses

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Computer Problem Solved

Oh yeah -- solved the IE7 problem. When I first connect to the internet, I've been in the habit of hitting the web button on my keyboard and IE6 opens and then my isp connection screen comes up. When I do that now, IE7 opens and the isp connection screen comes on -- but IE7 wants to be in control. So, if I just click on the isp connection icon and then open IE7, it shuts off the connection just fine when I tell it to! Problem solved.

Indian Summer again

No pics today. But I have made some progress -- Leaf Season has it's first border on; I've almost finished another punchneedle project -- but ran out of charcoal thread, which I'll get tomorrow; my hand quilting class is moving along -- I am trying to break some old habits and establish new there, so today's practice was slower than yesterday's.
Just got back from a brisk walk with the dog -- it is absolutely beautiful out there today -- a true Indian Summer. I should have been taking down screens and washing windows, but I stayed in and watched the Bears game instead! Go Bears!

Tomorrow I have a dental appointment, then need to do some birthday/Christmas shopping while I'm in town, then back to finish laundry and hopefully get the screens down -- the windows will get washed on the outside or not -- depends on how fast I get the shopping done! And, I hope to put the second border on Leaf Season! I want to finish Leaf Season by Tuesday so I can start "Gratitudes" on Wednesday -- looks like a great design and will use up some scraps -- wtg Jeanne and Judy!

1. A beautiful autumn day
2. Leftovers for dinner and Bill won't complain (he never does!)
3. Making time for a walk today -- need to do that more often
4. Visits with the kids Friday and Saturday (and AJ is growing like a weed!)

Friday, October 27, 2006

Another Day

So this is the picture I couldn't get up last night! The color is off a bit because the dark in the alternate blocks is a deep red, not black or brown. Anyway -- I really like it and hopefully tomorrow will get the borders on.

Today we got our AJ fix! He'll be 3 in February and talks with just a little bit of a lisp -- I love to hear him talk! The custody thing with Briana, 8, has been settled out of court as of today! She lives with our daughter and son-in-law, who is her dad, and goes to her mother's every weekend. Now the kids get to have her one weekend a month during the school year and every weekend during the summer (the mother will get Mon-Thur in the summer). So, now we (the rest of the family) should be able to see Briana more often, too. Too many times we've had family get-togethers and Briana had to go to her mother's, so we missed seeing her and she us.

The computer thing: I need to move some things over to the notebook anyway that I've put off -- don't want to clutter it up! vbg The problem with the pc seems to have fixed itself now. I think just some gremlins because I updated the IE to the newest version (sometimes I think Microsoft is trying to run my computer without my input at all!). As far as dial-up -- yes, I hate it, but it's the price we have to pay to live out in the country. I refuse to pay big bucks for satellite connection; I'll wait til the phone company gets the right lines out here, or sometime in the future they will have wireless out here; or, eventually, we'll move closer to town!

I worked a couple hours on the applique project today and started another punchneedle project. I only have the background left on the punchneedle -- it goes pretty fast once you get the hang of it! I knew the kids were coming out late this afternoon, so didn't want to start the borders on the Leaf Season -- so will do those tomorrow (although, our son & daughter-in-law are coming out in the morning!).

1. The custody case was settled with a minimum of fuss and it's a win/win for all parties -- plus it'll really be good for Briana, and that was what it was all about.
2. AJ is such a treasure -- ya just want to hug on him all the time!
3. Spaghetti for dinner -- and a bath for AJ afterwards!
4. Market Day food -- the freezers are packed full.
5. Family

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Hour a Day and More

It took a hour and 45 minutes today, but I have Leaf Season put together sans borders. I'm trying to upload a picture, but blogger is down for a scheduled outage, so we'll see!

Also spent a bit over an hour working on the hand applique. It's coming along, albeit slowly.
I am all ready for the next installment of my hand quilting class, which is the actual quilting, so I'll wait for class to start that. I did spend an hour working on a punch needle piece -- my first. The stitching is done, but I haven't figured out what I'm going to do with it yet! I am going to start another as a gift though, now that I finally got the rhythm of it going!

I'm having to move things from this computer to my laptop today as I think the internal modem is going out on this machine -- it won't disconnect the dialup when I tell it to -- it just clogs the phone line until I turn the computer off completely. Bad enough I can't get cable or dsl out here -- I sure don't need a temperamental modem!

Monday, October 23, 2006

One Hour Quilt and Stuff

I spent a couple of hours working on Leaf Season today -- managed to get 3 rows sewn together (the ones on the left), have another row stacked by the machine and the 3 rows on the right to do. The picture is real dark, so hopefully when I get it together I can find a place to take a better picture. I'm really liking the way it's coming out. Was going to try to get the blocks all done today, but kept getting interrupted with phone calls and such. Then I figured out I wouldn't have time the rest of the week to actually spend a day cleaning house, so I took a break and dusted and vacuumed the main floor. On the list for tomorrow is vacuum upstairs (I did dust up there today). And sometime between Tuesday and Wednesday evening I hope to get the bathrooms cleaned! Nothing like cleaning house piecemeal! I'd rather be quilting anyway!

Got our pictures back from our trip to DC. This is one view of the World War II Memorial -- it is absolutely beautiful - very impressive and a real tribute to our servicemen and women. Bill served in the Pacific theatre -- the Atlantic and Pacific are at opposite ends of the memorial.


1. I got to sew today even though I had to quit early to do laundry and housework.

2. We got the pictures back from Stephanie today -- they came out great. Plus we got a bonus pack of pictures of the grandkids carving pumpkins - how cute are they!

3. Catching up with dear friends and making a lunch date.

Sunday, October 22, 2006


Whew! After spending the past 3 days helping out at the guild quilt show, I was definitely ready to spend the day in the sewing room!
I managed to tidy up some so I could spread out again! I also managed to get my piece all ready for my hand quilting class at QU.

This was a piece of hand-dyed fabric I bought at the International show in Chicago a few years back, incidentally from Nancy Chong's booth! (She's the instructor for this class at QU). I'm looking forward to hand quilting again.

I have finished the two blocks for Leaf Season - just need to put them up on the wall and arrange them for sewing together. Also have the next leaves/petals ready to applique onto the background for the Christmas present I'm making.

Didn't win the raffle quilt at the quilt show -- as usual! It was a nice show -- had about 250-300 quilted items. Ours is not a juried or judged show -- only people's choice winners. We also had a boutique and I managed to sell two of my very bright wall hangings and I was quite pleased to get them out of my house! We also had a vendors mall with 7 vendors! It was great. Yes -- I did buy stuff! I bought two hand towels and a small kit to applique a pumpkin on one of them -- it will be a gift -- the other is such a pretty deep pumpkin color that I'm keeping it for myself! I also bought a stack of 16 fat quarters -- all 30's fabrics! And, honestly, 30's fabrics are not my thing -- I'm folk art and dark fabrics, but I have seen so many great scrappy quilts made with 30's fabrics that I have to make one! I've washed and pressed them and as soon as I pick the pattern I'm going to do, I'm going to cut them all up to make a scrap quilt! It will probably end up being a kit, because I have other things I need to finish first, but I'm not putting them away until I cut them and put the pattern with them!


1. Bill took me out to dinner last night at the 5th Alarm.

2. Finally getting to sew today -- I've been so inspired by the show and vendors, and so tired afterwards that I was going a little stir crazy!

3. Meatloaf and acorn squash for dinner -- if I get off the computer and get it going!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Summer in Nantucket

This is the latest block for the bom I'm doing at the lqs -- the quilt is called Summer in Nantucket. I finally managed to put it together today. I also spent an hour on the Leaf Season quilt -- the alternate blocks are all put together. Next I need to hang some batting on the wall for my design wall and put all the blocks up and start sewing the rows together. Tomorrow I'll be at the quilt show working, so probably won't be sewing at all. Maybe Saturday, but for sure on Sunday!

We dropped our quilts off for the show today and brought the stuff in to sell at the boutique. I noticed a sewing machine sitting on one of the tables for sale -- and snagged it immediately! The previous owner bought it at a garage sale for her daughter, had it professionally cleaned and checked and then her daughter didn't want it! It's a Pfaff Hobby 4270. It didn't have a book with it, and I've already checked online and every manual imaginable is listed except for the Hobby 4270! vbg. It's mostly straightforward, but I would like to know if it needs oiling -- I don't really see anyplace to add oil, so it may not. I can always ask at the place it was serviced, but if anyone knows -- feel free to jump in! I'm going to keep it here, but I will eventually give it to my daughter -- when I get her hooked on quilting!

1. Being in the right place at the right time for the new sewing machine, and being able to pay for it right away -- it was a good price!
2. Time to sew this afternoon.
3. JR met us in the driveway this afternoon -- a dog is always happy to see you!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

I'm discombobulated!

No pics today -- I've had one of those "I don't feel like doing anything days"!
I was all caught up on everyone's blog that I try to keep up with before we went to DC, but now I am way behind. We had breakfast out with friends this morning and then I gave myself permission to only clean bathrooms today (as opposed to cleaning the whole house). I did tidy up a few spots, but that was it. Got up too early, didn't sleep well and have been fighting a migraine all day -- one of those "it's just under the surface waiting to break free" kind! So, I finally took a nap this afternoon and now I think I feel almost human! vbg

Did manage to get everything ready to take to the quilt show setup day tomorrow. Unearthed my notebook with last Saturday's bom in it -- still haven't done that. Searched for my apron with our guild name on it -- found a plain one, but not the guild one (did I lend it to someone 3 years ago? I can't remember!). Did find my T-shirt with the guild name on, so that will do!
Just one of those discombobulated days!

So, I'm off to catch up with as many bloggers as I can.

1. Giving myself permission to just clean bathrooms -- I'll get to the dusting and vacuuming and mopping another day!
2. Breakfast with friends.
3. An afternoon nap in the recliner with the dog on my lap.
4. Dinner out with friends -- bonus no cooking day! vbg

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

One block closeup

This is just one block after I quilted and washed the quilt. I don't have a closeup of the whole quilt -- I'm definitely not a talented photographer! The pattern is called Sunny Days and was designed by the Piece O'Cake designers and is from their book, "Curl Up Quilts". Theirs was done in yellows -- which I really liked, but I think Briana will like pink better!

I managed to spend an hour and a half working on the applique today and another hour piecing the alternate block of Leaf Season -- I now have all the pieces into rows, to be made into 9-patches at the next sit-down.

I've decided that after I finish the applique project, I'm going to pull out one of my listed ufo's (as opposed to the tops I have finished since I made my list of ufo's!). My goal will be to finish a ufo a month -- working one hour a day like the other projects.

1. I got my new contact -- I can't tell you how wonderful it is to be able to see again! vbg I so much prefer wearing my contacts and reading glasses as opposed to the bifocals for emergencies!
2. Making time to sew today -- probably should have done something like clean house, but it was so much more enjoyable sewing!
3. A nice conversation at the dinner table.
4. JR is definitely feeling better.

Briana's Quilt

It's finished! Bound and labeled. I quilted an "x" in the ninepatch squares and did some nice meandering with a few hearts thrown in around the flowers and in the borders.

Da Bears: Thank you, Brian Urlacher, for revving up in the fourth quarter -- please explain to the offense how to do that! It was ugly, but we'll take the win!

Anyone in the neighborhood: Forreston's Country Crossroads Quilt Guild will be having it's quilt show "Autumn Splendor" at the Leaf River Community Center Friday and Saturday (until 2pm on Saturday) - Rte 72 in northern Illinois! (I'll be there working and hanging out both days - look for the old lady with white hair! lol)

Have to run errands today and hopefully can pick up my new contact -- I hate these bifocals!

1. The Bears won -- we'll take it any way we can get it!
2. Finally beginning to catch up on email.
3. Finishing another Christmas gift (Briana's quilt).
4. Getting silly with friends on the drive home from guild.

Monday, October 16, 2006

An Hour a Day

Well, blogger is not cooperating today, so will have to upload pictures of Briana's quilt some other day.
I did manage to spend an hour working on the applique project today, then about 20 minutes cutting the fabric and finding the batting for the hand quilting class and then a bit over an hour stitching the two-patches together for the alternate block on Leaf Season. What is the name of that block, anyway? I'll have to look that up one of these days.

Still need to put my BOM block together from Saturday (and yes, Dawn, it's one of the BOM from QGS). I'll post a picture when I get it together.

Working on laundry in between quilting today and now need to get ready to go to guild.
Have a good one!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

And Sew Again...

Believe it or not, the background fabric is all the same on my leaf blocks, but the only picture that actually comes close to the color is the light one in the previous post. Must be my camera needs recharging -- at least I hope that's the problem!

Today I finished making the leaf blocks for the Hour a Day quilt. I also finished the binding on Briana's quilt and it has been washed and dried. I'll try to get a picture tomorrow after the camera recharges. And...I washed and dried Shakespeare in the Park and sewed its label on in readiness for the quilt show next week.

I like this Hour a Day concept. I sewed for a couple hours on the leaf blocks today, but then worked on Briana's quilt (probably not a full hour), and maybe 20 minutes sewing on the label on the SP quilt. It's nice having 2 or 3 different projects going at once, different types of projects (piecing, applique, binding, label, etc), and in different stages of completion. Now that Briana's quilt is done, I'll start working more diligently on the applique project for a Christmas gift, while still piecing Leaf Season, and next week I'll be starting my hand quilting class, so I'll try to spend time each day on each project -- after the quilt show is over next Saturday, of course! I need to take my quilts in on Thursday, and I'll be working in the Boutique on Friday and helping out on Saturday and picking up the quilts after the show is over at 2pm. Plus we have regular guild tomorrow night to take care of last minute stuff. Looks like it's going to be a busy week!

1. JR is better today (after having to take him to the vet yesterday -- one of his vertebrae looks a bit inflamed, so he's on anti-inflammatories.)
2. Nice fire in the fireplace this morning -- it's rather cool here lately.
3. Sewing time this afternoon.
4. Neil Diamond, Anne Murray, Tim McGraw on the cd player today.

Friday, October 13, 2006

And Sew....

Today I managed to get all the hst's finished and put 8 leaf blocks together. The other 24 are waiting patiently. I also managed to sew the label on the one quilt for the quilt show and the label and half the binding is sewn down on Briana's quilt. Pretty good progess I think.

It was extremely windy outside today and a "neighbor" about a mile away and east of us had his barn burn to the ground, along with smoke damage to his house and another shed that burned. He had the barn full of equipment -- total loss. I ventured to the post office and bank this morning and the police department had the main roads blocked off to allow the various fire departments (Byron is a full-time department -- most of the neighboring towns are volunteer) through. I saw at least 3 different department tankers hauling water -- they had to drive at least a mile down the road to the water tower, and the hydrant across the street from the tower, and the hydrant at the main Byron fire department all were being used. We don't have a lot of fire hydrants available out in the country. The wind was blowing from the west to the east, so we were never in danger, but there are plenty of dry corn fields around here and it could have been even worse. The firemen did a wonderful job, I think.

Anyway -- tomorrow I have my LQS BOM and I hope to finish the binding on Briana's quilt. Might even get a couple more leaf blocks sewn....we'll see.


1. I'm grateful for the Byron fire department -- and all the rest of them. The ambulance service is part of the fire department, so I know first hand how wonderful those guys are because Bill has been rushed to the hospital a few times in years past!

2. Sewing time.

3. Wonderful, warm fire in the kitchen fireplace today.

4. I think JR is feeling better (he's been a little ill since coming home from the kennel -- not sure if it was their food or what).

5. Fresh baked bread.

Thursday, October 12, 2006


Got back from DC on Sunday, exhausted. Had a great time and even though it was rainy and cold, we managed to see the Memorials, the White House, and even the President landing in one of the three helicopters they scramble for the purpose. Ate way too much good food and am consequently back on my diet! vbg I took my 35mm camera, so pictures will be awhile.
Since then, I have unpacked, done all the laundry, ironed a ton of shirts for 2 people and a few pairs of slacks, ran errands and cleaned the house that hadn't been cleaned for 2 weeks! You'd think we'd been gone a month instead of 5 days!

Anyway... finally got to sew today and believe me, I've been itchin' to stitch for more than a week! I finished quilting Briana's quilt today, put the binding on by machine and pinned the label on, so just need to do the hand stitching on the binding and label.

Spent my hour on the One Hour A Day Quilt doing 32 stem blocks -- took the whole hour, but they are stitched and trimmed. Will start making the leaf blocks tomorrow.

Also fixed a rip in a seam of a jacket (took more time to set the machine up with the right thread than it did to sew it!).

And then I spent the last 45 minutes before dinner appliqueing two leaves onto my applique project and 5 minutes while fixing dinner pinning another label on a quilt that I'm putting in our guild show next weekend. (And yes, should have put the label on a long time ago!). I made three labels on the computer yesterday and still have one to pin and stitch on my Shakespeare in the Park quilt which will also go into our guild show.

All in all -- felt really good to be stitching today!

1. The quilting on Briana's quilt went really well today (on the Bernina).
2. Leftover Taco Soup for dinner.
3. Had a hard freeze last night and snow on the ground this morning -- glad the garden is officially done!
4. Staying in to sew all day.
5. Nice phone conversation with Steph.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Quick Answers

Everyone keeps asking about the pumpkin in the previous picture! That pumpkin was actually given to me by a friend that owned a grocery store. They sold them in there one fall and she had a couple leftover! I did not make it. Would be relatively easy though: It's just a crazy quilt of fall/pumpkin fabrics stuffed with polyfil. Must be directions somewhere on the net to make fabric pumpkins!

Heading to DC early in the morning, so spending today trying to remember all that I need to do and pack before then. Have to take the dogs to the kennel -- which I absolutely hate doing -- it's like leaving your newborn with a babysitter and going back to work -- really tough!

Have a good weekend!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Another Fall Quilt

Just doing things like laundry and ironing today. Making lists, making plans, finding papers we need to take dogs to kennel -- all those various and sundry items to be taken care of before a trip. We'll only be gone a few days, but it seems like a major undertaking sometimes! Tomorrow I get my haircut and run errands.

Quiltwise: Today I cut out and pinned a few leaves and buds for the next part of the applique project I'm working on. I also quilted 3 applique blocks on Briana's quilt. Broke a needle because I was attacked by box elder bugs and lady bugs -- boy have they come out in force in the last few days. Didn't start the Hour a Day quilt -- it'll have to wait til we get back from the Navy reunion. I need to finish Briana's quilt to free up the machine!

Last night while watching the Bears beat the Seahawks...GO BEARS!... I got out the needlepunch instructions and started my first one. It really goes fast and I like it -- I think it'll be a great pick up and go type project (well, pick up and sit and watch tv anyway).

Anyway -- have a good week everyone -- see you next week!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

A New Month

October has arrived and with it the summer weather is coming back - go figure! Time to review last month's accomplishments and decide on this month's goals.

Last month's accomplishments: I did manage to finish the One Hour a Day quilt - it's bound and waiting to become a Christmas gift. I also finished the Thangles BOM I was doing for the year -- it is also bound and waiting to become a gift. I got Briana's top together and it is pin basted and ready for quilting. Guess that's about it for September -- wasn't real productive quilt-wise, but sometimes ya just gotta take some time off.

New goals:
1. Quilt, bind and label Briana's quilt.
2. Finish the applique on the wallhanging I'm working on as a Christmas gift. I have the pieces cut for the piecing part, and have started appliqueing the stems.
3. Get the October One Hour a Day quilt top put together. I have the pieces all cut and one block pieced.

That'll probably be it for October -- we will be gone the first week for a Navy reunion; I'm doing a new bom from a lqs, so will have one meeting and one block to make for that; our guild quilt show will be the 20-21, so will be working at the show and also getting a couple of quilts ready to show, plus I want to sell a couple of my "shop samples" in the boutique, so need to take care of that stuff. In addition to my goals, I want to try to get in some hand quilting at least 3 days a week, so that should pretty much fill up the month. I see no point in over-extending my goals and stressing myself out! And, I'll need to take screens down and wash windows if we manage to get some Indian Summer weather -- after we get back!

1. A visit with Steve & Kim yesterday afternoon.

2. Kim loves her new administration job in the new school district.
3. Walnuts falling from the trees - it's like playing dodgeball when the wind blows.
4. The garden is pretty much done.
5. A quiet Sunday afternoon to sit and quilt.