Saturday, February 28, 2009

Block of the Month Finished "Just In Time"

I need to get to bed, but have to show you that I do some sewing, some of the time. So here is the block of the month that is due this month:

And the one that was due last month: (I was out of town for our meeting, so I didn't get it done)

So now a puzzle, and a question.

First the puzzle: Both of these pictures are landscape in my file, but I've loaded the second picture twice, and both times it has turned 90 degrees on me. Does anyone know why????? Sometimes Blogger just does not like me!

Second, my question: Notice that the two blocks both have a yellow fabric that has a definite direction to it. The print looks like little arches. Now, if the second picture had not turned (grrr!) the arches would both be "up". So my question: When you have a print like this, do you want them all to be the same direction in your blocks/quilt???


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

What a great night!

Last night was our Cub Scout Pack meeting. Now some of you know, we are rebuilding the pack in our town. It has folded twice in the last two years, But we are determined to make it go. Our recruitment has been slow, we currently have 5 boys, barely enough for a pack. But I'm getting side tracked.

Last night was our Blue and Gold Banquet. Every February, Cub Scout Packs celebrate the "birthday" of scouting in the USA. This is birthday 99!! All the boys in the pack showed up for this event, with their families. We had just a few awards, as we have only been active since October. We had pizza, salads and cake for dinner. The best part was the boys made the cakes! We had a cake contest, and each boy won a prize - Best Theme, Most Colorful, Most Unique, and Most Decorative. The most Unique cake was created to look like a pinewood derby car, and had headlights, license plates, and the wheels were cupcakes! So clever! Most colorful was decorated with m&m's, red hots, and sprinkles, and the m&m's spelled out WEBELOS (which is the 4th and 5th grade boys!) The most decorative had a spiderman figure and some bad guy figure (sorry, didn't recognize him) on top of the cake, with a few plastic trees. The theme cake was traditionally decorated, with blue frosting, and had our pack number proudly in the center of the cake.

And the best part? You could tell the boys participated fully in making the cakes. Very "boy done". They were great! And they all tasted delicious (yes, I had a sample of all 4 cakes). Oh, I said 5 boys didn't I. The 5th scout had an issue in that his cake got burnt, so he didn't bring it. But I sure hope he enjoyed our banquet, as much as the other boys did. I think the boys and their families had a great time. I know I did!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Melting snow

A quick look at the snow melting here at home. This first picture is the one-lane tunnel under the train tracks, and the hills behind. These hills are what is providing at least some of the water in the next pictures. (notice the vertical road barriers with the lights on the top of them. One is standing, and a couple are laying down)
A close up view of the tunnel. Notice that the water is edge to edge in the tunnel, and it is flowing fairly quickly. See the bright spot on the left side of the tunnel, just above the water?
Well, it is ICE. You would think at 57 degrees today, that the ice would have been gone. Here is a closer picture.

And from the left side of the tunnel, here is the water flowing out. Most of the year we have no or very little water. The foot from the wall the the first white spot moving right is the "normal" path of the water. There is so much water that is it also flowing off the road on the right side, then joining back with the main body of the stream farther down the road in a culvert that goes under the road.

From the left wall of the tunnel, moving right about a foot is the first white spot in the moving water. This is generally the right edge of the "normal" path of the water. There is so much water that is it also flowing off the road on the right side, then joining back with the main body of the stream farther down the road in a culvert that goes under the road.
How many more days do you think it will be before a pothole will force the road to be closed? Now you know what the road barrier signs are sitting there for!! LOL

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Post cards Received and Sending

First I just have to show you this February post card from my "Posty Pal" Holly! I just love her free motion hearts over the surface of the card! Thanks Holly! You brightened my day!

And as usual, I'm finally getting my post cards out. They will go into the mail on Monday, as we don't have Saturday service at our little Post Office. While they all look sort of the same, I tried 3 different methods to make them. Then I just decided to mix and match and put all the various pieces together into the hearts. This was not the look I was trying to get when I started, but I'm happy with my "cave man" look hearts. Lets see if I can get March Post Cards out any sooner than the last week of the month!!!

So, with DH out on his hunting trip, I have one more day and a half with time to do what I want. I've been doing a lot of "what I should" instead of "what I want". Isn't that always the way with wives and mothers? But can't complain. My choices. Now I need to make another choice. What to sew next. I really need to finish my three grand nieces' and nephew's quilts. They have probably forgotten that I'm even making them. The three are in various stages. And I want to mail the three at the same time. I also need to sew my BOM before the 28th. So, I have a lot to do.

Hmmm, it is 50 degrees outside, and the snow is gone from my flower garden (until the next storm). Maybe I'll go put the tulip bulbs in the ground now. (These are 3 bulbs in a little pot I bought a month ago, to enjoy the flowers in the house.) Wonder if the change in temperature will kill them, or will they flower again this spring? I think I'll find out!



HAH, The ground is as hard as a rock, I couldn't get my trowel even 1/4 inch into the ground. Hmm, live and learn! And I noticed the crocus bulbs that didn't do much last year but die, Several are sending up little sprouts. How can they do that in such hard ground??? LOL

Thursday, February 19, 2009

A Little bit of a lot of things...

First, winner of my give-away, your packages are now in the mail!

Second. We had a good trip to Phoenix, had our scout meeting, and had the doctor check my eye. Yes, the blood has been absorbed a lot, but now he could see that the retina has a small horseshoe shaped tear. So he lasered it, and I need another check up in a few weeks.

Now let me confess, I had been really scared of having the laser thing done to my eye, but I think God does watch out for me! I had a conversation with a nice lady in the waiting room. Not sure I ever knew her name, and I certainly don't remember it now. But she had had the laser thing several times. When I expressed concern, she sort of sppppfffffd, and waived her hand, and said it was nothing. It was after that I found out I would need the laser thing done. Her statements and attitude calmed me.

And what do you imagine the laser machine looks like? In my mind, it was a smaller version of an MRI - and not really small, and you would put your head in it, etc, etc... OK, I do blow things WAY out of proportion. Now I have your curiosity peaked? Sorry for this let down. The machine is the size of an Orange. Yes, an orange, and not a very big one either. And it is attached to a headband the doctor puts around his head. Yes, he wears it on his head. I really need to teach my imagination not to get so carried away!

So what else is going on? My DH is on a hunting trip, so I have several days to just be me, with no one else's schedule to worry about. I hoped to sew more today, but I got several tasks done, packages in the mail, the virus guard on my computer replaced with one that is working (Yep, that is a very good thing!), and just some general house cleaning done. I was supposed to work for a few hours, and then sew. I plan to do more sewing tomorrow, and maybe a little yet tonight. You all have a good day tomorrow!


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I'm off...

I will shortly be heading to Phoenix, to see my eye doctor for a follow up, and a monthly director's meeting for summer camp. I'm going to take my tatting stuff with me, as it is small and easy to transport. :-)

I'll see you all in a couple days.

Monday, February 16, 2009

And the Winner is:

I noticed in another blogger's give-away that they used this random number generator to select the winner of their give-away. Seemed like a neat way of selecting the winner to me, so I adopted the idea. So, with out a lot of fanfare, the winners are #12 in first place, and number 7 in second place. Congratulations Winners!! And thanks to all who entered the contest.

What? you want to know who 12 and 7 are??? Well the 7th and 12th person to comment on the give-away blog of course! Oh, you don't want to go look it up yourself??? hmmm, ok, I guess I can tell you here.

First place, number 12 is: West Michigan Quilter! She selected the fat quarters!

Second place, number 7 is: Brenda! And as it works out, Brenda selected the magazine!

Again, Congratulations. I'll be sending you each email shortly.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Give Aways!!

Run over to Mother Superior's Blog to enter her give away. It closes Saturday Feb 14 at midnight Mountain Time. She is giving away a $50 dollar gift certificate good on orders from their web site. I don't know about you, but I ALWAYS want more thread!! And I've only looked around her blog for a few minutes, but it is great!

And while you are at it, don't forget my give-away. Scroll down to my Feb 7th post and enter! Dead line is noon February 15th, Mountain time.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


OK, Tatting Chic was brave enough to put in writing what I'm sure crossed every one's mind. Just where does she get these porcupine quills?? No, I don't harvest them directly (but I did think about it one day - that's another story!) I get them from a Native American supply shop in Phoenix. I've looked in Flagstaff, but nada. The only place I've ever found is the one shop in Phoenix. It's a great shop to learn more about Native American culture, or if you are involved with Boy Scouts Order of the Arrow, they have all sorts of things for regalia. Hence the porcupine quills.

So, If you know of another outlet to purchase quills, let me know, please. What? You really want to know about when I did think about harvesting my own quills? Well, it is kind of yucky. What, you don't care?? OK you asked for it. If you have a weak stomach, you might want to stop now.

I live in a very small community (one grocery store, one dollar store, NO drug store... you get the picture), and it is a 30 mile trip to Flagstaff where there is shopping. There are some communities between us and Flagstaff, but they are even smaller than we are. So you get the picture - the highway is through very rural area, with long stretches of not much of anything, except trees, and an occasional animal. While driving there and back, we occasionally see "road kill". (Told you it was yucky!!) Anyway, on one of my trips, on the side of the road was a dead porcupine. I could see all those quills sticking up! It flashed through my mind "Look at all those quills!!"

But very quickly common sense took over. "You are on an Interstate for pete sakes!" "How do you think you can get the quills loose?" "Do you think you can handle getting them loose, if you even had a pair of pliers, which you don't!" "Dummy, you'll get hit by a passing vehicle!!!" So I heaved a big sigh for a lost opportunity, and kept on driving. (Hmmm, I still wonder how hard are they to pull out? And just how many quills are there on a porcupine?? LOL) I may never know.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

More about the porcupine quill stilettos

Several people wanted to learn more about the porcupine quills that I use for a stiletto while sewing. They come in various sizes. The small ones below are about 4-5 inches long. The end on the right is harder, and comes to a more blunt tip. If I want to put pressure on what I'm doing, I might use this end. The end on the left is flexible, and sharp. It is the "business end of the quill" for the porcupine. The little barbs are so small, I can't see them, but if you run your fingers from the left end toward the center, you can feel the roughness of the quill. I use this end most often. When I sew on fabric where the top fabric is trying to stretch, I hold the quill down flat on the fabric, just in front of my sewing machine needle. It keeps the two layers together, and keeps them from shifting. I've done this so much, I've made a flat side on the quill!! These do wear out after a while, but I get a lot of use from each quill. You can see in the picture below that they are not all straight, and the shapes vary from quill to quill.

I also want to share this picture of our snow. A big storm came through northern Arizona. We had winds gusting to 30 mph so most of our snow blew away. But here is a picture of the hill behind our house from our back patio (taken over the tops of the houses behind us!) I just liked the snow on the far trees, with the green trees in front, and then the one tree with no leaves at the bottom of the picture. There is just little bits of snow in the closer pine trees because of all the wind!


Saturday, February 7, 2009

Celebrating my 100th Post!!

OK, you just KNOW 100 posts needs a celebration! So I'm celebrating with a give-away! Actually, I'm going to give 2 prizes, so listen up.

First up is a magazine "Quilt". This is one of my favorite magazines. There are several cute quilts in this magazine every month. There is always pattern pages in the magazine, and this month there are templates for the tulip quilt on the cover (plus other things). There is an applique framed picture with embroidery, a lesson in a quick binding technique, and even a quilt they claim to be able to be made in 90 minutes!! (Hmm, not sure I could get it done in 90 minutes, I always seem to be slow in putting things together!) Oh, and don't forget the tote bag instructions. And the best part of this prize??? Not only do you get this magazine, but I'm giving a 1 year subscription!!

Prize number 2: A packet of 6 fat quarters. I just love these cardinals. And with 6 fat quarters you should have enough to make a wall hanging. Or just add these to your stash! It's up to you. (Hmm, looking at the 90 minute quilt in the magazine there is ALMOST enough fabric here to make that quilt. Might be hard to get the cardinals fussy cut tho!)

And I am going to add a porcupine quill stiletto to each prize also. It you haven't been reading my blog for a long time, you may not have heard about the porcupine stilettos. These are great! The tips hold on to your fabric but don't damage it. If you hit the stiletto with your sewing machine needle, no worries! (I've done that a couple of times. No needle damage, and the quill survives too.) If you want to see what these look like, make a note on your entry comment, and I'll show you a picture in my next post.

AND I reserve the right to add anything else I come up with to the prizes!

So, here are the particulars! Please leave me a comment on THIS posting. AND I need you to tell me if you would prefer the magazine or the fat quarters. The first person drawn will get their choice, the second drawn will get the other prize. If the first drawn does not indicate a preference, the second drawn will get their choice. Sound fair?? I hope so, cause that's the rules!! Oh, and entry deadline will be February 15th, at noon Mountain Standard Time. That's just a little longer than a week.

Hugs to all, and good luck!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Like I don't have enough "projects"!!

When I was at the craft show, I spotted this little book on Tatting. Actually it is 8 1/2 x 11 inches, but it only has 28 pages. I found this is a great book to teach yourself tatting. It came as a kit, with a packet of 4 different tatting needles. (Tatting needles are blunt like tapestry needles, but these needles are 5 inches long, and are the same thickness from the point to the eye.) I guess there are a couple different types of tatting, this is Needle Tatting. I made a couple practice rings and then during Superbowl I made the little orange piece laying on the book.

The little thing I made will be a bookmark, I need to string a ribbon down through the center where the needle is. Below my bookmark is the package of needles and threader that came with the book.
This is an up-close view of my tatting. My rings are not all the same size, and the loops are not even either, but I'm pretty pleased with this first piece. It measures about 1 inch wide, and 2 1/2 inches long. It did get faster to make as I made more rings. But can you imaging having to make this if you wanted a little bit of lace at the neck of your dress??
On another note, as I was logging in, I noticed that this is blog number 99! That means my next blog is number 100! Seems to me that is a milestone that needs to be celebrated! So to celebrate, I will have a give-away. I'm not sure what it will be yet, but I hope you will like it, and want to enter into the drawing. Hmm, Fabric... ohhh, CHOCOLATE! Quilty stuff?? Maybe I can find a neat book? Hmmmm!

Sunday, February 1, 2009


I've been in Phoenix for the last 3 days. Thursday 2 friends from my last workplace and I went to the Phoenix Craft Fair at the AZ State Fair Grounds. We met early for breakfast, and then shopped all day. I spent too much money, but I had so much fun!! Then on Friday, I went BACK to the craft fair with my mother-in-law. Didn't quite spend the whole day this time, but again spent too much money!! yikes!!!!

Then today my co-den leader and I went to Pow Wow. No, not that kind of pow wow. This was a Cub Scout training event. we went from class to class, had lunch, and had fun. I made a Harry Potter wand in the magic class, and learned how to pass a cotton ball through a glass, and several other magic tricks!! We also talked about den doodles, and I need to find the beads I had years ago for the boy scout troop, because they would be good for a den doodle!!!

Classes were over about 4pm and then I finished packing, and drove home. I'm dead on my feet now, or I'd take pictures of the craft fair stuff, to show you some of the goodies I bought.

Hugs to all, and thank you for stopping by!!