Friday, November 14, 2008

Post Card Confessions!

First confession... For my post card group, I did not make ANY post cards in October. Oh, I started to make them. Had this idea of enhancing fabric. I used rubber stamps, and circular stitching, and paint. But that is as far as I got. I still have one big piece of fabric, and it really needed more enhancing before I could make post cards out of it.

Second confession... I received two post cards in October, and never acknowledged them. Boy, not very considerate of me! These post cards were sent by Brenda (bottom) and Rhonda (top). Thank you both so much, they bring a smile to my face every time I look at them!

So, because I didn’t get out October post cards, I’m sending a card to each person in the group this month, and they are going out TOMORROW!! YEA!! I got my idea from the monthly info for Cub Scout Leaders. At the top of the picture, you can see the Turkey neckerchief slide I made as an example for my den. Then I expanded that, and made the post cards. Here I thought I was being so original in putting those goofy eyes on the turkeys... But look at the ghost that Brenda did! It has goofy eyes on it too! I hope everyone enjoys receiving these as much as I enjoyed making them!!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

First Snow of the Year!

We just had the first snow of the year. It lasted for about an hour and a half. Here are some pictures...

It Starts!

And then the results!

It is so pretty! I just had to share!

Take Care!

Monday, October 27, 2008


YES, the quilting on Heather's quilt is now done. I've been working at squaring up the quilt tonight, and I've pulled the binding fabric out of my stash, so that will be the next thing after I have the quilt square. There definitely is a light at the end of the tunnel, and I don't think it is a train. LOL

I'm just beginning to think of what my next project might be. But listen to me. I have about 4 other things I should finish first!! Well, finish Heather's quilt, and then decide what I really want to do! I just can't wait to show you the feather quilting on the setting triangles, so I just took a picture. Here it is:

Hmm, I cut the corner off a bit in the picture. I do have enough fabric to bind it without covering the quilting. I'm pretty happy with the feathers. On to the next step!!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Saturday Night Progress Report

Well, I now know that marking these triangles for quilting takes as long as actually quilting them!! There are 18 of these triangles that I need to quilt, and I have 9 of them finished! 9 more to go, and I think I'm too tired tonight to do any more. But just think! I can put the binding on tomorrow after quilting - I can feel it Woo Hoo!

And below is a picture of the block I finished for today's Block of the Month class (12 inch finished blocks)! You can see that it is very green. In the class today, they had the finished top, so we could see what it was going to look like. The Focus fabric is a floral of the deep reds and greens on a black background. Way too dark for me. But I also learned that they had a strip fabric that we are not using that matches the fabric line. I got that to use instead of the focus fabric they had picked for the boarders. But I will still have to buy the finishing kit, because it will have the instructions and materials for the center medallion part of the quilt. So my plan? I will not just add the original border fabric to my stash... I will use this fabric for the backing. I will probably have to purchase some more of it, but it will be a good use for what I get in the kit.

So what do you think of the new colors for this year's Block of the Month? If you are a "green" person, I bet you like them!!
And tomorrow - more progress!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Continuing Personal Qulting Retreat

It is now 4:15 on Saturday. I have been to Flagstaff, and done my Block of the Month. Stopped at Michaels for a scrapbooking glue thingy, and at JoAnne's for a pants pattern and some inexpensive material (I'm going to see if I can make pants that fit!!) After getting home, I ran to our local Safeway for my flu shot, and then home to eat a quick lunch (it was almost 2:00 by then).

So after I ate, I created my quilting template for the rest of the quilt. I've marked three of the triangles, and will now try to quilt those. Then on to the rest of the quilt. I'll let you know when I'm finished quilting!!

Last Update of the Night.

OK, on Heather's quilt, I finished quilting the "inside", and played with the feather design for the setting triangles. I decided to make them look half decent, I needed to mark them, and therefore need a template. I drew on some template material, and it looks pretty good, so I'm going with that design. But... How do you cut out the design? I think they make a tool to do it, but I don't have any such tool. I've never made a template for a quilting pattern before. So I'm stuck on making any further progress tonight on the quilting.

At this point, I decided it was time to sew together the next BOM from Odegaards. Yes, I joined again for this next year. And the first block is due tomorrow. So yes, I sewed it up tonight. (I had cut the pieces out last night). And I finally figured out what bothered me about the block. the colors are yellow, red and GREEN. No Blue!! Now those of you who know me, know I'm definitely a blue person. And I like yellow and orange and brown. But, GREEN! Now I will confess that green is starting to grow on me a little, but I'm sure that is what is bothering me about the block. I considered for a minute finding some blue fabrics to replace the greens in all the blocks, but I have convinced myself that I need this experience of working outside my normal colors. It will be good for me.

I've got my stuff ready for the meeting tomorrow morning, and I'm taking Heather's quilt for show and tell - I plan on mailing it to Heather before the next time we have a meeting so it is show and tell tomorrow or not at all.

The other thing I attempted to do tonight was install a pull out basket under my sink counter in the kitchen. It is a two tiered thing, with the top tier only half as wide to go around the plumbing stuff. Well I did pretty good, but my DH took the tools with him this weekend, so I don't have a suitable phillips screwdriver to use. So it is half installed, and I will have to either get another large phillips screwdriver, or wait till he brings the tools back. grrrrr!

Well I need to get to bed. It is almost 1:30, and I will need to be up by 8am and hustle to get to class in the morning. Hope you all have a great day tomorrow. (I'll post a pic of the new block tomorrow)

Friday, October 24, 2008

Update on Progress

OK, The last post was at 3. It took probably 10 minutes to get down to business, and start quilting. I got about 1/2 of the "inside" done, and ran out of bobbin thread. While winding a new bobbin, I realized that I want to quilt the set in triangles in a color to match the fabric (blue). This was about 4:45, so I probably sewed for an hour and a half. Trip to the store, and found not only thread, but allowed myself to buy fabric for a Christmas gift. (even tho I didn't have the exact yardage needed, I guessed, and just bought a little extra. Great job if I do say so myself!!)

When I got home, I decided before getting back to work, I should eat dinner. That has been accomplished, and now making my promised post, and going back to work. Oh, and I didn't tell you that DH is off hunting this weekend, so I intend this weekend to be time for me to accomplish stuff that I want to do. Which is sewing and quilting, and hopefully some gifts along the way. I guess I'm having a sewing retreat all by myself. LOL I promise another post before I go to bed.

OK, back to work

Time to get down to business!

OK, I've been way to busy, or at least way to distracted to get much sewing done, or even blog. Last weekend my husband's hunting buddy was here, and I hoped to get sewing down while they were out and about, but somehow only spent about an hour total sewing. Part of my problem is that I've told myself that I MUST finish the quilt I made for Heather's graduation last May. Between camp, and everything else, I just haven't gotten it done. And I've finally figured out that when I really care about what I'm making, it takes me forever, because I want everything to be perfect. I've got to force myself to get this done, because a not finished "perfect" is not perfect at all!!!! So I'm going to go work on getting the quilting finished. I outlined a french horn in the center of the top, but now need to do "something" around the horn to finish the quilting. and I have feathers on the outside blocks. It is set on point, and the setting triangles will probably be feathers too, but the inside, around the horn is the part that has me going Hmmmm. And to top it off, I don't know why I'm beating myself over the head, because I've found that the top fabrics are hiding most of the quilting anyway.

SO - I will now go quilt the rest of the top - putting a lot of love into the work, and I think that will make it "perfect", no matter how it comes out. I promise to check back in and let you know how I'm doing. I'm going to set a timer for 3 hours so I don't forget! LOL

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Help with Old Fabric

A couple months ago, my DH and I stopped by a church rummage sale in town. I found a couple small things, and also some plaid fabric. Not knowing the content of the fabric, I decided I could buy it, and take it to my quilting group that makes charity quilts. It sat in a bag until tonight, when I decided I needed to sew the edges to prevent fraying, and get it washed. As I took a closer look, I found that all but one of the pieces was 2 yards and the others were each 3 yards in length, but each fabric is just 36 inches wide!! It has a very firm hand, almost stiff, but had a funny smell to it. (that's why I thought it needed to be washed.) But look at the tag that I found on the 2 yard piece!!

Yes, the tag says 2 yard remnant, original price 1.38, on sale for 87 cents!! And look how the tag attached... there is a wire on one end that went through the tag, then was pushed through the fabric, then through the small slot in the other end of the tag, then the wire ends were bent over, away from each other. The wire, after all this time is NOT rusty! And the tag says the fabric came from Montgomery Wards! Now Wards disappeared from my area many years ago, and I don't remember them ever selling fabric. And oh, yes, the plaid is woven, not printed. Yes, each thread in the fabric is a color, either white, red, yellow, green, or blue. And if you look close, where the red and green thread cross over each other, you can see both colors in that area.

Also, I did a burn test of one of the fabrics, it burned clean, just leaving ash. And there was no "plastic" smell when I burned it. The first piece (the remnant) is in the wash now. After I get them washed, I will post a picture of the fabrics (I can't stand to be near them right now. Maybe it is the dye? Doesn't smell like smoke to me. Sure hope washing them takes the smell out of them!)

So any experts out there? Any idea of when this fabric was made? Should I go ahead and give it to the group to make quilt backs? Or should I use it for something else?

Monday, October 6, 2008

Catching Up...

Wow, have I been busy or what??? Just over 2 weeks ago, I drove to Albuquerque to pick up my Mom from a conference, and brought her to my house. She stayed for a week, and then I drove her home to Alamogordo NM. That is a very long drive, but most of it is pretty country to drive through. I stayed to visit with her for almost a week, and then came home Thursday Oct 2. Friday morning I did some house cleaning, and then two of my friends from Phoenix came up to visit and quilt. We have been having a great time, tho I must confess we have done more eating, talking, TV watching, etc than we have sewing. They also brought me some cool things... a tote that could be used for anything, but is meant for scrapbooking tools. It is red, and has SO many pockets, that I think it will hold everything! Very cool! They also brought me two boxes, one will hold 12x12 paper for scrapbooking (or what ever I want to put into it, and another box, smaller, with compartments that I can use to sort photos, to use for scrapbooking. Yes, I know I'm a quilter, but there is a close connection between making quilts and making scrapbook pages, and I volunteered to do a scrapbook this year for my service sorority (ESA). LOL

Anyway, I'm thrilled with the gifts, and am planning to go take a scrapbook class to get myself started. Don't know when, but sometime soon, I hope!!

And I have done just a little sewing - I finally finished the August block for last year's BOM. Now I just need to sew it to its row, and then all the rows together, and the border. All in its time!! Now let me show you the block I just finished... It is a real bugger!!

I had trouble with matching a couple of the diagonal lines, between the green kite shapes and the blue triangle shapes. Most of them I could "fudge" into being pretty close together, but you can still see they are a little off. BUT, one of the pieces was off by over a 1/4 inch! UGH. I asked my friends for their thoughts, but there was nothing to do but pick that part out, and sew it again. The major culprit was the rectangle of the blue and the flower print. They were just not put together right to start with, and they threw everything else off. It is much better after re-sewing the seams, just a little off, and I can live with that. Anyway... my friends will be here one more day before heading home. Maybe we will knuckle down and get a little more done tomorrow.... Or maybe we will go sightseeing.... or maybe to Flagstaff to do some shopping!!! LOL We are having a great time!

More later!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

UFO Finish and Controled Burn...

OK, The two topics in my title have nothing to do with each other, except that I have pictures to show you. First the UFO Finish. I actually have a table runner and a table topper made out of the stars that I started 3 years ago. Here is a picture of the table runner: And a picture of the table topper:
I'm not sure if I will keep them, or give them away. I do think they are cute. Maybe I'll make a few more in other Christmas fabrics??? I actually have one large red start left, but it is still inside out. I guess that star is still part of a UFO to yet be finished?? LOL
Moving to the next topic: Controlled Burn. Not sure how many of you may be familiar with this practice. The Forest Service has learned that if all fire is prevented in a forest area, the duff (accumulation of pine needles and dead plant materials) on the forest floor will cause an extremely hot fire when the area does burn. It makes a fire very hot, very dangerous, and very hard to control and/or put out. So now they are doing "controlled burns". This consists of waiting until the temperatures are cooler, and there is more humidity in the air. Then they burn the duff/grasses/etc. The pine trees survive (seems like they wouldn't, but they do). This first picture is looking west toward the control burn that was started today. Isn't all the smoke amazing??

And this second picture is looking east at the same burn. It is just 1/2 mile from my house. Thank goodness the wind is blowing the smoke away from us, we can't even tell the burn is going on from home. The fire that you see is a couple of tree stumps that are burning, and other dead wood. These will probably burn for a few days. I hope the winds keep blowing toward the east, so we avoid the smoke this year. When they burned the area west of our house last year, the smoke lasted for over a week. But we feel safer knowing that any fire in the area will be easier to control. And the grasses started growing back in just a few weeks!!

What else have I been doing? Well last week, I drove to Albuquerque to pick up my Mom. She is here for a week or so. Then I will take her home to Alamogordo. We aren't doing anything really special, just having time together.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Post Cards Away!

I have put my postcards into the mail today. I managed to make 6 of them, and they went to the next 6 on my revolving list. So, Brenda, Holly, Valerie, Karen, Debb, and Carol, you should be receiving your cards in what ever time frame it takes to get to you. (It will take some of you longer than others. Please let me know if the packaging I used this time works or does not work.

Also, I made progress on my Christmas Table topper today. I have all the assembly done, and now just need to add a quilt label. Yea! Getting closer to being done.

Well, going to go sew, or clean, or ??? but feel like doing something.


Please Help with my Quilt Block!

Before we get to my help request with my block, I want to show you the two great postcards I received last week. The top card is from Holly, and is so bright and cheerful! The second card is from Brenda and yes, that is all hand work on the pink fabric! Thank you so much ladies - they are wonderful!

I really want your opinion on the quilt block below. I haven't looked for the original fabric to bind the quilt square, but did take the square with me when I went to the quilt shop. If I have to go with new fabric, I picked out the red below. It matches pretty good with the flower color in the print. But here is my thoughts/question... The block was entirely hand pieced and quilted (the only thing I've ever done that way), so I'm planning on doing the finishing by hand. I'm leaning toward making a wall hanging instead of a pillow (dog will lay on the pillow!!) So, What do you think of the red? Would you like to see another color as the binding? Should I really try to find the original fabrics in my stash? (don't know if I have any). Should I look for a blue instead of the red? I know blues are hard to match, but maybe I can find one. Do you have any other ideas? The owner of the quilt shop thought I could frame it in a frame, with a fabric mat around it. I'm thinking of that, but not leaning that way. I need to hear your ideas!! Any and all, crazy or not. I really appreciate it.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Quilting Progress

First, let me say that I hope the 4 people who I mailed post cards to last month all got them. Brenda, Holly, Valerie and Rhonda all should have received a post card. Next, I am was struggling with what to make for this month's cards, then I got a great idea. I've gotten 6 cards pieced, and need to do the edges, write on the backs, and want to add some gems to the fronts. So I'm in my sewing room looking for my tool to attached the gems. OK, I really need to finish unpacking my sewing stuff. We've been in the house for over a year. (4 months don't count, because we are away for 2 months each summer). But still, I need to get it finished. And the closet already needs re-arranging! (big sigh). Anyway, I'm looking for the tool, and thinking "I need to get these cards done, because I'm almost to the top of the Queen's list for finishing UFO's, and I need to finish Heather's quilt which does not count for the Queen's list, and hubby thinks I need to work. (DUH!) Deep breath here!

Oh, my! Look at that! The first quilt block I ever made. This project must be about 20 years old. It is totally hand pieced, and hand quilted. I think I was going to make this into a pillow, but I could make a small hanging out of it... and it truly is a UFO. Hmm, I don't think I have any of the left over fabric to bind it with. Not sure I have time to fuss finding the "right" fabric to bind it with. But it would be a quick solution to my Queen time frame problem...

OH, and look what is underneath the block... The stars that I started 3 or 4 years ago to make a table runner. Oh Wow. 2 stars completely done, 2 that need blanket stitching, 4 more that are turned right side out, but need the little star added, and 4 more that are still waiting to be turned. Huh, another UFO. This might be quick, too. OK, keep your mind on what you are doing. Looking for the tool. Out to the garage, look at box tops, no, can't see one labeled as holding the tool... hmmm, stars... I have fusible out for the post cards that I need to stick down the rest of the little stars on the big stars.... where is that tool??? Well, what if I just cut out the little stars I need and fuse them on the big stars? Lets go look. yep, there is the patterns, and the fabric I was using... Oh, cool... this is fun.. yep, got all the little stars stuck on the big stars. (Well not the ones that are still inside out) I'm going to lay them out on the coffee table. Here they are. They are just laid out, and actually the instruction has me putting them together with the long legs in the center. But I think I like it this way. Now I need to do the blanket stitching... (darn tool, where is it!!) OH, MY, Gosh!! Look at the time. It is 3 am. Got to go to bed. (This all happened last night!!)

Today I took a short nap, before going to our first "bells" practice at church (6:30pm). Then as we had not eaten dinner, we stopped at "Pine Country" for a quick meal, then home. I'm still jazzed about the star table topper, and tonight I did the blanket stitching around all 4 of the little green stars. Here is a picture of one of the first red stars. I think the stitching is going nicely. Tomorrow I will stitch the two little red stars that have not been done, then just need to sew the points together, and do a quilt label. I think I will just write on the back of one of the white stars, probably the one on the end with the small green star.

So this will take care of finishing a UFO for another few months, but I still want to do that first block I made. But I need to finish the cards... maybe they will have to go without the gems, or maybe I'll have to add them using an iron. (wonder if that would work!) Yes, Brenda, I know this is a no stress post card swap, and I know I do it to myself... but I get an idea into my head, and just want to make what I can see... (LOL) I really am enjoying making the cards. And Heather, your quilt is next. I think the BOM will wait until your quilt is finished... And hubby is bugging me for his quilt... OK, one thing at a time... I will get them all done, and want to enjoy the process as much as the finished items. (so, where is that dang tool!!!)

You all have a great night. and enjoy doing something creative, what ever that may be!

Friday, September 5, 2008

I know I'm behind in blogging - it's been one of those weeks!!

First let me say that I've had 3 different groups of over night visitors. I still haven't washed the sheets from the last use! And that one would be my eldest son. I really enjoyed his visit, but didn't think to take any pictures. We mostly just hung around, and did our thing. I did fix some holes in the pockets of his pants (yep, did the mom thing!), and I did get a little sewing done. Oh, then my husbands recliner broke, so earlier this week we shopped and bought him a new one. And since my chair is pretty worn out, we splurged and ordered a matching chair for me. It should be here in about 4-6 weeks. I think this is the last furniture purchase that we will make for quite awhile.

In the quilting area, I did get the rows of my BOM quilt put together, and I made the #11 square. Here is a pic of #11:

I will be cutting the pieces for block 12 pretty soon. And I signed up for the next block of the month, which starts Sept 27. I know it will be brights, and that there will be a center panel, with the 12 blocks arranged around it. Can't wait to learn more!!

Now for my RANT!

I have spent about 3-4 hours today fighting with our Internet - talking to customer support. There is something wrong somewhere, and it is getting worse. For TWO hours, I fussed trying to send a 4 meg file to one of our customers. I kept getting "transmission interrupted", so I re-zipped the file into two files (2 megs each) and tried to email those out. My email reported that I was successful, but the emails remained in my outbox, and the client did not receive them. My hubby finally got them to send using his email, and it took about 10 MINUTES to send each file. Now today is not the first time I've talked with Technical Support. But each time, I get different "answers", but never any real help. Our Internet connection keep getting slower and slower.

What system are we using, you ask. HUGHESNET. When we moved into the house, satellite Internet was our only option. [QWEST (phone company) finally got Internet service into our area about 4 months after we moved in.] And we got the BIG 2 Watt Business system from HUGHESNET, because it is our business Internet, and we (and our clients) depend on getting their files on a timely basis. Our clients make changes up to the last minute, and then need the documents immediately so they can get them to the printer, and then to the bidders on the project.

Now today I finally got to talk to advanced technical support, and they directed me to a screen that would run an Upload and Download Speed Test. The young man decided I needed a JAVA update, and directed me to do that, then run the test 3 times, and call back with the response, and we would go from there. Well first off, I did the JAVA thing, and now when I try to run the tests, I get a multiple JAVAs are trying to run, and it shuts down. CRUDDLY!

So aha, says I, "Hubby, can I run the tests on your machine"? Yes, I can. OK, so when the young man was giving me the instructions, he said that the numbers he would be looking for was 1.2 on the download test, and 200 on the upload test. (I think that is 1.2 meg, and 200K) I run my test 3 times as directed, and call back technical support. (I'm thinking OK, my download numbers are 608, 668, and 585, and the upload numbers are 11, 13, and 12 - I'm finally going to get some help)

Not to be. The man I got this time says "I'm not sure why they told you that, but we can't help you until you run the test 3 times a day, morning, afternoon, and evening, running the test twice each time, 15 minutes apart, for 3 consecutive days" Well DOUBLE CRUDDLY CRUD.

SO, I've run the test again. As I suspected, the numbers are getting better at night. (Things always seem to run quicker at night.) BUT WE ARE PAYING FOR A BUSINESS SYSTEM. IT SHOULD WORK BETWEEN 8AM AND 5PM!! MONDAY THRU FRIDAY!! IT IS A BUSINESS SYSTEM FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!

So this is my plan. At the bottom of my blog, I'm going to start recording my readings. Then I can direct "Technical" support to my blog to read the numbers. And I'm thinking of starting a new blog - just dealing with DIRECWAY issues. (That way my quilting friends won't have to listen to this stuff!! Also, As our business depends on it, I will be ordering an Internet connection from QWEST. I guess we will run two systems, and maybe one of them will function??? And if you are thinking about ordering HUGHESNET Internet, well, maybe my experience is not typical, but be ready to get a different answer each time you call HUGHESNET Technical support.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

It's going to be a sewing day!!

I should be able to carve out several hours for sewing today. My hubby is in meetings all day, my house is clean enough as I had an overnight guest (Our boss's boss from camp). I've got some laundry to do, and need to run to the grocery store, but all in all, I should have at least a few hours to sew. Check back later and see my progress!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Not much to blog about today...

I managed to get all the billings out for work. Because we'd been at camp for 2 months, we were behind. But they are done, and in the mail. In between working on billings, I've been trying to get the house ready for an overnight guest tomorrow. I've got lots left to do, but most of the day tomorrow to do it. Tonight when it is quiet, I will probably cut out the BOM that is due this Saturday, so I can get it sewn on Thursday or Friday. At least it is an easier block this month. I'll try to sew you a pic of the pieces tomorrow.

Have a great day.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Finally - progress on making my blocks

On Saturday, my hubby and I went to camp to be there while the post camp inspection happened. Post camp inspection is when other people come in and look at our facilities, and see what needs to be done. (We have several things that need to be painted, and probably other stuff too. I'm sure there will be some sort of report) Any way, to get to the fun stuff, I want to show you a picture of the road into camp. See all of the wild sunflowers??? There were more on the left side of the road, than the right side at this point. They are really beautiful. These are also the same as we have in our front yard at home.

Then while I was walking around with the inspection team, we spotted this horny toad. Now this is NOT a toad, but is really a lizard. You can learn more about these lizards by searching for "horny toad" or "horned lizard" in your favorite search engine. Wikipedia has a nice write-up too. You can see how well he blends in with the rocks on the ground. I had a real hard time seeing him through the camera viewfinder to get a picture.

Now to show you the progress on my BOM log cabin blocks. they are ALL done. The log cabin blocks are setting blocks between the BOM blocks. Isn't this setting great? I'm showing you two shots, the first is with the flash on, the second the flash is off. I felt that some of the blocks showed better one way, and other blocks the other way. The two "holes" in the layout are the BOM that I need to do for this month (Before Saturday!!) and the last block we will get on Saturday. Then next month we will start a new BOM. I can't wait to see what that will look like!!! OH, also, there are a couple borders that will go on this quilt. So far, I'm really please with how it is coming out. It will be Queen sized when it is finished. Maybe I'll sew the rows together that are completed!

The other quilt that I will be getting back to really soon is Heather's graduation quilt. I have most of it quilted, but need to finish quilting it, and then adding the binding and the tag. I'm sure she is anxiously waiting for the quilt, and wondering when I'll take a break from working on this one, and get to hers. Also, my hubby has a quilt he wants me to make for him, and I've ordered a fabric that will be the focus fabric. It has not yet arrived, but I need to get Heather's quilt done first. (That's a promise, Heather!!)
Well, off to bed. Have a good day tomorrow everyone!!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Two weeks ago, I shared this picture of the sunflower in my front yard. I think the plant grew from birdseed that I was feeding the wild birds. I actually have two of these plants, each having one flower at the top of the plant, which is 3-4 feet high. We have many wild sunflower plants, but these have grown taller, with many side branches, and many flowers on each plant. The wild sun flowers are probably 3 inches across, which includes the yellow pedals. You can see this sunflower was much bigger than that.

Well today, two weeks later, the pedals are basically gone, and the center is beginning to form the sunflower seeds. It is even bigger across now. Here is the picture:

Isn't it amazing how bit it is? Especially since it started from seed that was kicked on the ground by birds from the feeder?

I didn't get any sewing done today. We went to Flagstaff and did the banking, and running errands. My hubby got a great deal on a reconditioned gas mower. Our electric one that we brought from the city just does not manage the job that we have up here.

Well, we have a meeting out at camp at 8:30, so we will probably need to leave here at 7:30. Guess I better get to bed. Hopefully I can show you some sewing progress tomorrow.

Have a Great Weekend!!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Progress on log cabin blocks...

I promised I'd show you some progress on my log cabin blocks. You can see from the fabric I cut, I have 3 more "logs" added - the two red ones and the tan one on the left. I believe all I have left is three more "logs", the other tan one, and then two dark blue logs. I"m getting close!

Another animal story to tell you - this one on our dog - Jenny. At camp, our Nurse Debby really missed her dog, and compensated by giving extra love to Jenny. Nurse Debby also liked to give Jenny treats. Well lots of people liked to give Jenny treats. One of the treats was a box of Scooby snacks. Jenny really liked those, and the end of the box came home with us. A few days ago, Jenny came into the office, and started whining. She does this when she wants something - generally to go outside. (Good Dog!) I got up and followed her out of the office, she turned away from the outside door. Puzzled, I followed her into the kitchen. She pranced over to the counter, and turned in circles, first one direction, and then the other, whining all the time. Looking up on the counter above her, what did I see? The box of Scooby snacks had been moved to the front of the counter when I had been wiping up, and I did not move them back. Jenny recognized the box, and REALLY wanted a Scooby snack. I laughed so hard at her my DH had to come see what was going on. Talk about a SPOILED dog!!! And yes, she did get her Scooby snack.

Have a great day!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Tonight, at 10:35 pm, we have finished out big job!!! Well, until they call and say they need something changed! LOL What a feeling of relief!

To celebrate, I want to share some pictures I've taken recently.

The first is fabric I managed to cut last week. Yes, I said we were working like mad, but we had a big storm, with lots of lightening right over head. So the computers all had to be unplugged and turned off, including the internet satellite. So what was I to do? I managed to cut all the remaining strips for my log cabin block for the block of the month at Odegaards! Now I'm in the process of sewing them on the blocks. I'll show you progress on those soon.

Also, while my husband was looking for something in the garage, he found one of my sewing room boxes that had been put in the wrong pile in the garage. And look what I found!! Years and Years ago, I joined an applique block of the month class at a store in Phoenix. There were 12 blocks to make, and I have 6 of them done. The rest of the fabric must be in another box.
I'm not sure I'll make the next 6 blocks. If I use just these 6, does anyone have any ideas as to what I could do with them?
Now for the great pictures I've taken from the window of the office this last week. Here is a little bunny. He had hopped through my front flower bed, but when I moved he ran across the yard. He was so cute!! (But don't ask my mom about bunnies. She thinks they are evil creatures LOL If you don't remember from earlier in my blog, my mom fractured her hip (Just a hairline crack thank goodness!) while trying to throw a stone to chase away the bunny that was eating all her flowers. I don't think she likes bunnies very much yet!
This is a picture of one of the birds that has been coming to our feeder. He has a red/orange breast very much like a robin, but he is some other type of bird. Anyone know what he is??
These next two pictures are another type of birds that has been at our feeder. Bright blue head, and a white breast. Also the back between the wings seems to be blue too. (It's hard to tell for sure, they like to stay in the shade of the feeder.)
I had to take a picture of our sky. This is looking north east from our home. I just thought the rain was beautiful.

Well, that is all for today. I'm going to go veg for a while, then go to bed. Have a great day tomorrow!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Well it didn't get done this weekend

Our deadline on our big job was this morning, but now it has been extended to tomorrow noon or there abouts. I guess if our customers consultants keep giving us new things, and changing their minds, and ... Well you get the idea. You can't get it finished if they keep give you more and changing what you have already done. It gets frustrating, but now it is just getting silly. Or maybe we are getting silly. Slap Happy probably. But yes, it will soon get done. I'm hoping it will be tomorrow.

On a better note, I've been waiting all week to share my first award with you all. Brenda awarded me the "Tree of Happiness" award. Not sure what I did to earn it, but it sure did make me happy! LOL!
Here is my award.

"You have just received the tree of happiness. It is scarcely a small plant, which depends on you to grow firmly and strongly. Plant it on your heart, water it with smiles and kindness, feel the aroma of its flowers, savour the sweetness of its fruits and protection under its shade whom you love."
Isn't it the neatest photo, hands holding such a perfect little tree. Being so careful and tender!

I'm also supposed to list 6 things that make me happy right now. So here goes:

1. Our big job is ALMOST done!

2. I got to sew on my log cabin blocks while my hubby fixed a wonderful dinner.

3. Our weather! The windows are open, the crickets are chirping. The storms roll through, bringing much needed rain and then the sun comes out again.

4. My friends - the new ones I've made here in town (Dorothy, Madge, Diane), the ones I left behind when we moved (too many to name individually), and the new friends I'm meeting online (you know who you are)!

5. The flowers in my garden, the birds and hummingbirds at the feeders, and the bunny that comes by once in a while.

6. And of course my husband and my sons, and the rest of my family. The older I get, the more I realize how important they all are.
And I just have to add a number 7. After unpacking from camp, I had misplaced my camera battery charger. I finally found it last night! woo hoo. Back in business with photos!
Now who and I going to give the "Tree of Happiness" award to? Let me think. I'd definitely like to give it to Brenda, but as I received it from her, I don't think I can. So Brenda, enjoy the thought. Rhondee, I loved the post card you sent to me and your blog is so interesting so I'm giving a Tree of Happiness to you. Also, from my old job - the atmosphere has totally changed there, so I'm awarding a Tree of Happiness to Karen, Kristy, and Nancy. This award to them is so they know I wish them all happiness. I don't believe they have blogs, but I will send it to them in an email. And I'm going to award my two sons. Now I don't believe they will pass on the award, and I don't expect them to. But I hope they will take a few minutes and think about the 6 things that they are happy about.
Hopefully tomorrow I will download the pics on my camera of the birds and bunny that have been in our front yard. So a funny story... On the seed birdfeeder, we have had several types of birds. One of the slightly larger birds was eating, and not appreciating the smaller birds that were also trying to get something to eat. They were definitely irritating the bigger bird. So one of the little birds flew from the seed perch up to the top of feeder. He was standing so that his tail was hanging over the top of the feeder, above the bigger bird. Well the bigger birds saw it, cocked his head sideways, and then reached up and grabbed the little bird's tail feathers. I can still hear the little bird squawking, and see it flapping it's wings. Well after about 4 squawks, and a couple seconds of wing flapping, the little bird got loose and flew away. I could almost hear the bigger bird think: "well it serves you right!!"
Have a great night. Hope to talk with all of you tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Not much to tell...

This week we have been very busy at work. We have a big deadline coming up this weekend, and must get everything done. Now we have time to get it all done, just not time to play much in-between. Darn, I have about three quilty things I'd rather be doing, but I guess work comes first. My DH reminds me I really like when the money comes in. And, yes, he is correct there.

So just bear with me while my blog is boring, I'll have sewing stuff to show next week (Maybe sooner if I can sneak some sewing in!) :-)

Things to share: Yes, my 4 post cards are in the mail. So the recipients should receive them soon. And if you are one of the post card group, and don't get a card, well I'll be making ones for you soon.

And woo hoo. I received a blog award. My very first. Hopefully in my next post I'll have time to share that award with you all, and Pass the award on too!

That's all the time I have now. Got to go to bed so I can work more tomorrow. (She mumbles to herself - it will be done this weekend, it will be done this weekend.....

Have a great day. I'll be by to visit your blogs soon. And if you are one of my visitors who haven't shared their blog address with me, just drop my a quick response - and I'll be by to see you!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Fun Making Post Cards

I'm down to the final steps of making my post cards for the Post Card swap. All the fabric I used on the front of the cards is from my scraps from the Block of the Month that I'm doing. I'll show you some pictures next week, after they have gone out in the mail. (No hints before receiving your cards!!)

I made 4 to send, and one that I'll keep. The keeper was my practice card, so that I could make improvements on what I was doing before making the other 4. We've had a couple more people join the post card swap, so I guess I'll draw names to see who will get cards this month. All I have left to do is write on the backs of the cards, and figure out how to mail them. Making the postcards has been a lot of fun, and I'm glad I joined Brenda's swap. Oh, and I have received a couple cards already this month!!

The top card is from Brenda, and the bottom card is from Rhonda. It's really exciting to get such wonderful postcards in the mail!
Guess I better head to bed so I can get up for church in the morning.
Take care, and find something fun to sew! (or whatever is your passion!)

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Cheating and Ethics

OK, I don’t rant very often, but today is just one of those times. Do you read Dear Abby?? Yesterday and today she is running letters in response to “Valedictorian Contender” who was unhappy about the cheating going on around him/her, but was uneasy about turning in the cheaters. I can understand about not wanting to be a “squealer”, but the responses really got to me. From a school administration who was too buy with REAL problems and chose to ignore “good” students caught using drugs at lunch, to moms feeding kids in the grocery store and throwing away the wrapper and not paying for the food.

Our children won’t learn morality from TV or other kids. It has to start at home. With the “little things”. Children need to be accountable for their actions. Society has gotten to the point of not wanting to hurt children’s feelings. They can’t loose – it will hurt their psyche. Good Grief!

It’s not easy as a mother trying to instill the sense of morality in your children. One of the hardest things I did was taking one of my sons back to a local craft store, and making him turn in the miscellaneous beads he had found on the floor, and put in his pocket. Now he had less than 20 plastic beads. I’m sure the store would have swept them up and thrown then out. But the point was the beads did not belong to my son, and he should not have taken them. Personally, I think the lady he turned them into over-reacted. But I did NOT want her to tell him it was OK either. I never had another occurrence of his taking something that did not belong to him. And yes, the store was 5-6 miles away, I wanted to start dinner when I got home, I had other things to do that evening. But this was the point where the lesson could be learned – needed to be learned. So I took time to teach him. (And it was all I could do not to cry when he was so upset). I never claimed it was easy to teach life lessons.

In this world you get what you earn. If you cheat, you should get caught. Do you want the test cheater fixing your car? (hmm, he told you the part was bad, was it?). Do you want the liar promising to show up to fix your leaky faucet? (will he arrive?) Do you want the person who steals things, in your car or in your house? If you want none of these, then why is it not important to teach our children to tell the truth, not to cheat, not to take things that don’t belong to them? These undesirable activities have a beginning in childhood, and need to be stopped when they start. It’s called being a PARENT!!

OK, I could go on for pages more, but I’m done. Thanks for listening!

Monday, August 4, 2008

One more round of logs

I made a little more progress yesterday on the log cabin blocks, so here is another picture. I put the blocks next to the last BOM so that you can see how much farther I need to go. I need one more light side, and two more rows of darks. I'm a bit tired tonight, so I don't know that I will make any progress on these tonight, but I'm sure I'll get back to them in the next few days.
I need to juggle these block with the quilt I need to finish quilting and bind, and I want to make some fabric post cards. I joined the swap that Brenda is hosting. It is very low key, (read that low stress!) and looks like a lot of fun. Visit her blog here to learn more.
Have a great night, and thanks for checking on my progress.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Progress on Log Cabin Blocks

Yesterday I completed sewing the next "light" rows on to the log cabin blocks. There are 24 of these blocks, and as you can see, two different fabrics are used in this row. 12 blocks for each fabric. Now to add the next "dark" row. It is a red fabric. Stay tuned for progress!

Thanks for checking up on my progress!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Qulting and Gardening

Last Blog I promised you a picture of BOM 10. Well that was a few days ago, but here (finally) is the picture. I don't know if I've explained before, but the 12 BOMs will be set in a Queen (or King) size quilt with an additional 24 log cabin blocks. I can now claim to have started the log cabin blocks. (LOL) Well, it IS a start. Yes, that little square to the right of block 10 is the center of the log cabin blocks. I have 24 of those cute little things. I have pressed the fabric for the next two strips that get sewn on to the log cabin block, so maybe I'll just keep showing you my progress on those!!Now, I also want to show you my flower garden. I had just started watering it, therefore the two-toned dirt! Most of the plant were planted in the last week, so they are pretty small. But the two back corners have snapdragons (back left) and dianthus (back right). Also, that big plant in the center near the front of the garden is a mum that survived our winter. It is FULL of buds, and I can't wait to see it in bloomThe remainder of our yard is still wild (ok call them weeds if you want to!!) Well we have been working to tame the undesirable weeds, like the tumbleweeds and foxtails. We are keeping the sunflowers, the little yellow daisys, and the yarrow. Below is a picture of one of the sunflower plants. Most of them have much smaller flowers than this, but I just had to show how big and pretty this is. I'm not sure if it is really a wild sunflower, or if it came up from the bird seed that the messy birds spill on the ground. Either way, I'm keeping that plant.

I guess I'm pretty much over my "blahs". I started a notebook, and am writing everything down that I need to do. It is neat to see the items crossed off, and I feel like I'm getting a lot more done this way. Well DH and I are off to get dinner (pizza probably). Then I intend to work on the log cabin blocks.
Good sewing to you, and thanks for dropping by!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Block 10 for my Block of the Month is DONE!

Yes, I have finished my block of the month for tomorrow. I did not get much house cleaning done, or any laundry, but my husband, son and I worked out in the yard for several hours. We chopped weeds (we used a whole spool of line in the weed whacker), and I got a 6-pack of dusty miller, and a 6-pack of portulaca planted. I think I need a few more plants, but will wait a couple days before getting anything else. So at least we made a little bit of progress in the yard.

I'll post a pic of my new block tomorrow. I'm heading to bed now.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Just kind of blah...

I keep thinking about quilting. I need to finish the quilting on Heather's quilt, and get it bound. I have the label created (it is in the shape of a quarter note), but have not written on the label yet.) I also need to sew my BOM for the meeting tomorrow. Guess I HAVE to do that today.

But I keep looking around, and realize how much needs to be done in the house... and the yard. It is depressing. I am making progress. I've got some of the laundry finished, but more to do. And the house needs vacuuming and dusting.

I guess I just need to make a plan. Maybe I should do some work, and then reward myself with some sewing?

Any one have suggestions on how they handle it when they get in this mess? Or how do you avoid getting into this pickle to start with??

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Finished Cleaning at Camp, and found a Grass Fire!!!

Well, I went to camp this morning to finish cleaning up the trailer, and haul the remaining stuff home. I wanted to be home by 1 pm so that I could attend my quilting group I had not been to in the last 7 weeks. We got just over a mile out of camp, and saw smoke. Lots of smoke. Around and behind a house. No one in site.... I sent my youngest (Chris) over to see if someone was behind the house. I think he was thinking I was over reacting, but when he got around the side of the house, he hollered at me to bring the shovel. Yes, there was a grass fire, and no one was around.

It was still small, probably no more than 6 -10 foot across, but the flames were a foot high. Chris started beating out the flames with the shovel and trying to make a "line" to isolate the fire. I couldn't find anything to help with, Chris hollered for me to go back to camp and get Ranger Bob. As you can guess, Ranger Bob was out, but I got the Trading Post Director, and her son, and stopped by Ranger Bob's shed for shovels. By the time we got back, Chris had stopped most of the advance of the fire, but we helped him put out the spots that kept flaring.

At this point we finally called for help. (Cell phones have limited coverage in this area, so you sort of have to walk around to get a good connection) The burn area was about 15 by 20. Then we noticed at the edge of the burn area was... matches.... a BBQ lighter... other things... We pointed these out to the fire dept when they arrived, and they called the sheriff. Some kid drove by on his bike, but instead of looking at the fire trucks, and showing a lot of interest, he kept his head down, and sort of peeked at us. I pointed him out to one of the fire fighters. When he went by the second time, the sheriff was there, and stopped him to talk to him. Yep, the little sh*t (as my father would have called him) probably did it (innocent until proven... but I understand he confessed, and I understand that the shoes he was wearing matched the imprint that someone had left on the BBQ lighter handle.)

I'm so glad we stopped and checked the smoke. The wind was gusty, and kept changing directions. The grass and pine needles are so dry, even if the rains have started again. And there was a horse farm across the road. If we'd left 10 minutes earlier or later, it might have been a very different outcome.

Well, my hubby will be going to Phoenix tomorrow for some meetings, and I will stay here to do some cleaning, laundry, flower planting, weeding, maybe sewing??, and visit with my son before he heads back to school this next weekend.

Take care, do some sewing, enjoy your friends and family.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Post Card, Baby Quilt, and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society

HOME! It is a nice place to be. Sure needs some attention by the housekeeper tho. Guess I need to do a little of that in the next few days.

When we got home, I had a quilted post card in the mail. It is the first I've ever received, and I'm very excited about it. My picture has washed out the colors some - it is a very striking card. It was sent by my good friend Brenda! Thank you so much Brenda.

I also want to show you some baby quilt tops that I made at camp. They were really simple, a yard of each fabric, layered on top of each other, cut into a nine patch, and then sewn back together with each other.

I got the pink and the yellow fabric for 80% off, and found the green to match. The colors were just calling out to me. You can see the pattern of each fabric in the pic below. Should make quick baby gifts when I need one!

My eldest son Jeff is getting serious about bicycle riding. He plans to ride in the El Tour de Tucson, and is fundraising for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Check my side bar for a link to his web page. If you want to support Jeff, or one of your fav's is the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, you might want to consider a donation.
I guess it is time to go to bed. I have lots to do tomorrow. Take Care, and have fun sewing something!!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Today was the last full day of camp!

I can't believe the time has flown by so quickly! We had our closing campfire tonight, and tomorrow we have the staff dinner, and we are done. Of course, it will probably take my husband and myself another day to get all the last stuff done. But almost all the staff will depart tomorrow after dinner.

I had hoped to do more sewing this summer, but I mostly embroidered names on bags for the directors. I think I did all but 2 of them. And I made this purse - The pattern is called Jester Satchel, and is created and designed by Elizabeth Starr. It is a very easy pattern, (no pockets in side - both a plus and a minus). Do the beads and tassel look familiar to you?? They should. I needed SOMETHING to trim out the bag, and as I rummaged in the small amount of stash that I brought with me, I ran into the end of the trim that I used on the flag quilt I finished recently. I was shocked when the tassel and beads went so well with the fabrics. I'm pretty pleased with the results.

Tomorrow I will give the bag to the young lady who gave me the friendship bracelet. I never managed to make her a bracelet, so I hope she will like the purse. Here is a photo of the purse...
take care, and do some fun sewing! Now that camp is almost over, I hope to do more sewing, and blog more often.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

I should have posted this on July 4th...

This is a picture of a Garrison Flag that has been suspended over the canyon by camp. The flag is 20 x 30 foot in size so it give you some idea of the size of the canyon. It was beautiful hanging over the canyon and blowing in the breeze. It was placed there by a man who was on staff in the Mountain Man program years ago. Very nice, don't you think??
I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July.
Today I managed some sewing... I purchased a yard of 3 different fabrics that were green/yellow and pink/ and pink and green; cut them up into large 9 patches, and mixed and matched so the center of the 9-patch is one fabric, the corners are a second fabric, and the sides are the third fabric. I've sewn all three quilt tops together, and will need to layer and quilt them when I have time. I'll post a pic of them later.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Sharing where I've been working...

I thought you might like to see where I've been working for the past month. This is the building that houses the camp office (door in the center front, on the porch). On the right side of the building you can sort of make out the first aid red cross in the red circle. The door for first aid is on the right side of the building. The window you see on the left side is the Nurse's room. Behind that room (On the back of the building) is the room we stayed in last year, but decided this year we needed to stay in the trailer park to be able to "get away from it all" LOL The stairs to the porch is on the right side of the porch, under the first aid sign. You can also see the white board hanging from the porch that lists the Troops that have mail. You can also just make out the hummingbird feeder hanging from the roof of the porch. It is fun to watch the hummingbirds fight over the feeder. We have two types of humming birds - Rufus (an orangy-gold colored, and mean) and the other is a broadtail. The broadtail is green and has a red throat. OH, I almost forgot. You can also see the typical ground cover here at camp. What's that? You don't see any? Sure you do, it is DUST. It is very dusty right now, and we are waiting for the afternoon rains to start. It really helps with the dust, but then we have mud. Hmm, can't win, I guess. LOL.

The next picture is of the inside of our office. the door to the left goes to the nurses area, and further left is the kitchen area. You can see Dorothy who works with me. She is on the phone in this picture, talking to one of the Scoutmasters that is coming next week. Our bulliten board looks messy, but we can find everything we need on it, and my flag quilt is hanging up above the bulliten board. Our counter to serve the scouts and scoutmasters in at the bottom of the picture. It is a little higher than a normal counter, and is made of a beautiful wood. I have no idea how old it is. The cash register is on the counter to the right of the picture, and a gate with a sign that reads "office staff only" is on the left, between the counter and the wall behind me as I took the picture. Oh, and my beta fish is in the tall vase on the far desk to the right of the picture.

So now you see where I spend my days. It's not very exciting, and the carpet on the floor should have been replaced a few years ago. But we make it work, and serve our customers with smiles as they come into the office. It is time for bed, so I'll say good night for now. Have a great evening, and have a great 4th of July weekend!