Friday, December 5, 2014

The Cabin

Several friends have asked about a cabin that my family recently acquired.  I finally had my camera and remembered to take pictures (of course the pictures are a month old).

 This is a picture from the deck the river is just  beyond the trees.  We had a local farmer plant the tillable acres with soybeans.
 This is also from the deck.  The river wraps around the bottom ground like a horseshoe.
 This is the cabin.
This is also part of the property.  The windmill pumps water into the pond.

This is a little bit of photo overload, but the fall colors were so amazing.  We have several deer that live in the bottom ground along with the wild turkeys.

Delaney took these last 4 photos of the river low ground.  Her photos of the reflecting trees were so great that I wanted to share.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

December goals

It is hard to believe November is already over.  This year is flying by!

November goals were:
  1. Quilt 2 customer quilts
  2. Put borders on 2 quilts
  3. Quilt 3 quilts from the UFO parade
  4. Cut out the pieces for the new Bonnie mystery.

I did not do much quilting in November.  I did manage to put the borders on 1 quilt and I have the border pieces ready to go for the second quilt.  I quilted two things of my own from the parade (very small items).  I had enough pieces already in my precut bin for Bonnie's mystery, so I am off and running on another UFO.  I fell short on my goals, but I made a little more progress.

December goals are mostly the same:
  1. Quilt 1 customer quilt
  2. Quilt 1 of my own
  3. work on the Bonnie mystery 
  4. Put borders on 2 more quilts
Those seem like pretty simple goals, but every weekend seems to be filled with activities.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Lots of color

My new dishes-one of every color.  How could I pick just one or two colors?
We have been using our wedding dishes since the beginning.  When Daughter #2 was young she left us with only a few salad plates after a mishap.  Most of my bowls have cracks or chips.  It was past time and I have been looking at the same Fiesta dishes for a couple of years. 
Black Friday shopping go for me and I do not feel any remorse.

I am still working away on my quilting goals.  I am ready to look at my accomplishments for the year and set some new goals for 2015.

Monday, November 10, 2014

November Goals

I didn't post my my accomplishments for September because frankly I didn't get much accomplished. I am hoping to do better in November.  I did quilt 2 quilts for others already this month.  One was a runner, but I think that counts too.

To entertain you, I thought I would post some pictures of the chaos in my studio last month.  I believe this to be the worst disorganization that it has ever been in.  It is such a lovely space, however, it is hard to get inspired when this is the first look in the door.  
 The other side of the studio wasn't any better.  I have since done quite a bit of cleaning, purging, and organizing.  That is mostly what I accomplished in September and October.

Since it is the beginning of November, I want to set a few goals.

  1. Quilt 2 customer quilts
  2. Put borders on 2 quilts
  3. Quilt 3 quilts from the UFO parade
  4. Cut out the pieces for the new Bonnie mystery.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Still here

I I haven't disappeared.  I am just having trouble getting into the routine of regular blog posting.  I am still working away on the UFO mountain.  I haven't counted recently, but I think I am in the downward decent.  I plan to get a count at the end if the year with a new parade.  Two more months to meet my goal.

I have lots of large projects ready for borders.  I have been struggling with the border selection on this one.

I think the problem is......I need to do a pieced border.  I love the blue, it has been my best option, but I just don't think it makes the quilt sing.

I am also doing a little scrap management this month to prepare for the quiltville mystery.  I had plenty of helpers for sorting today, but I think they might have been a little confused about the method.

Have a happy Halloween!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Denyse Schmidt Fabric Palooza

I did get a little bit of sewing in this month.  I am so much happier when I get even 10 minutes of sewing time in.  It truly is therapy for me.

My daughter is doing such a great job of blogging that I feel like I need to get busy so I am not an epic failure.  It is hard for me to believe that she has been gone for a month already.  It is very exciting that she selected textiles for one of her course subjects.  Maybe she will become a quilter some day after all!

I worked a little last weekend on borders (that was one of my goals for this month).  I have 2 borders attached to my log cabin quilt.  I am still deciding on a final border.  I am leaning toward the top border which is navy with a tan star design.  I also like the brown on the top right.  I love this log cabin setting with the stars.  I think it was worth the effort to finish the stars in the border (even thought it seemed like it took forever).  This quilt is on my UFO list, so I am happy to have the first 2 borders on it.  At one brief moment I thought about a pieced border. I decided there was enough going on in this quilt without adding a pieced border.

I have been hoarding my Denyse Schmidt fabrics from Joann's for several years.  I have made a few things with them, but I still have quite a collection.  I decided I would cut 10" off each print so that it would be easier to actually use them in a project.  Now I am on the hunt for the perfect projects.  When I last counted, I had over 90 prints.  My sister inquired as to what more than 90 DS fabrics looked like.  Here they all are stacked up.  
They look a lot more impressive when they are all spread out!!!  I divided them into 2 piles - Warm and Cool (a trick Ellen taught me long ago).  I think they look pretty amazing like this.  I have far more cool than warm.  I have used this trick to balance the color when arranging blocks.  

If  anyone has the dots in the lower left in the orange color, I am sure we can work out a trade.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Hoping to be back (to blogging) soon

It's hard to believe, but June 4th was my last post- 3 months ago.  A lot has happened in the last 3 months.

I survived the baseball/softball schedule.
I played nurse to an ailing dog and a son who had a serious injury
Household renovations moved forward
After a long delay, my daughter made it to Mudgee Australia
We welcomed a new daughter into our home from Switzerland as an exchange student

A lot has NOT happened in the last 3 months -

I haven't completed any UFOs
I haven't quilted a customer quilt
I haven't really done any sewing at all!

My goal for the month of September:

  • Add borders to 3 UFOs
  • Survive - Volleyball, 2- Football, Soccer, Baseball, and put dinner on the table at a somewhat reasonable time
  • Quilt 2 Customer quilts
  • catch up on paperwork

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

May Goals Recap and Looking forward to June

I did do a little quilting in May, but my UFO progress has stalled.  June marks the mid-year mark and I am still hoping to meet my goal of 35 finishes from the UFO list.

I quilted 3 customer quilts in May.  The first one was a swoon quilt.  I did a baptist fan pattern.  This pattern gives just enough texture to make the fabrics in the quilt shine.

 I also made the Bionic Gear Bag.  You can purchase the pattern from craftsy.  The instructions were written well enough that I made it to the finish line.  I used Moda Linen Mochi Dot on the outside.  I love all the little compartments in the bag.  I think it would make a great bag for electronic cords or even Camera stuff.

I will admit the first bag took way longer than it should have.  I started a second bag and it is going together much quicker.  I just have a problem with things that are not flat.

My favorite part of the bag is the space between the zipper pockets that is perfect for Aurifil thread.

 My June goals are as follows:

  1. Quilt 2 customer quilts
  2. Bind 3 Spicy Spiral Runners
  3. CLEAN MY STUDIO (this one could take all month!!!)
  4. Quilt 2 items from the UFO list.
  5. Bind a customer quilt
These seem do-able to me.  I have 2 weeks with my mornings free which is really helping.  I quilted most of the day today finishing up some of my runners from the Moda Candy Club.  

Saturday, May 10, 2014

The frog

Awarded to me for the queen seam ripper.  This is much better than passing the ceramic frog.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

May Goals (April shortcomings)

It is hard for me to believe that April is almost over.  I managed to put my Lewis and Clark quilt together and put the borders on, and I did put the borders on my orphan block churn dash quilt.  I have all my bindings done except one.  I fell short on my quilting goals.  I hope to work on some of these during the first week of May.
  1. Quilt 2 more customer quilts.- Working on this one still
  2. Put together the blocks for Lewis and Clark quilt.  I did manage to get the alternate blocks made in March
  3. Put borders on my 4-patch quilts set on point.- I really did try to get this done but I didn't have the right color fabric
  4. Put the last border on the Churn dash blocks
  5. Bind the remaining 4 quilts from January  1 left to go
  6. Put together a new project that I cut out- Carry over to May
  7. Quilt the pillows/runners that I made in February (after number 1-4 is completed)-Carry over to May
May focus will be on QUILTING!....and baseball, softball and track....
  1. Quilt 4 quilts
  2. Quilt the pillow/runners that I made in February.
  3. Put together my new pear quilt during the May Retreat
  4. Continue to work on the FW blocks.
  5. Get some of my UFOs ready to quilt (cut the batting and make sure I have backings and bindings made)
I have been stuck at 22 finishes from the UFO list for several months.  I am still working on these UFOs, but I haven't had any finishes.  The goal is 35, so I need to get busy!  Many of these are are ready to be quilted and bound.  

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Spider Legs

This is block #82  from the FW book.  Don't worry, I am nearing the end of the blocks I have cut out so my recent splurge of posts will stop.  If you have been following along from the beginning, you should have about 20 blocks left to go.  I will be doing some substitutions when we get down to the final 10.  Let's face it - no one is going to know if it actually came from the book or if you picked an easier block.  Also, with over 100 blocks, no one is going to know if you repeated an easy block except for you.

This block is NOT an easy one.  The pieces are quite small!  Once again I am changing the way this block is put together.  Does a block have the same name if you put it together differently?  We will be making some flying geese that finish at 3/4" x 1 1/2 instead of the trapezoids in the pattern.  It looks like a crazy mess of pieces, but trust me- they will all fit together.

Cutting Block #82
1- 2" square
4 - triangles w/1 1/4" strip and companion angle (CA)
16- triangles w/ 1 1/4" strip and easy angle (EA) 
4- 2" squares
8- triangles w/1 1/4" strip and CA
8- triangles w/1 1/4" strip and EA
4- triangles w/ 2 1/2" strip and CA

That was the hard part. Now for the sewing-

Make 8 flying geese dark as the larger triangle; Make 4 flying geese with the light as the goose (larger triangle).  These should measure 1 1/4" X 2".  Use the picture if you need help on how to square them up.  Put the 1 1/4" line at the top and the bias line (45 degree) on the seam line.  

I always press the first sky (small triangle) toward the goose, and the second sky triangle away from the goose.  I think this helps it to lay flat. These are super small pieces, so you may want to press them all open. If you aren't comfortable with your seam allowance, you can always use a 1 1/2" strip and square them up to the size needed.    

Join the geese in pairs.  Join the remaining 4 geese with the corner squares

 Add a large dark triangle to both sides of 2 of these units; join the remaining 2 units with the light center square.

I pressed the final 2 seams open to reduce bulk.  I was amazed how well this block lined up for me.  

Square up the block  to 6 1/2" taking care to keep the center square in the center.

Did you make it to the end?  Now look at block number 110 from your book- It is the same block with the exception of the larger triangles.

Edited:  I did block #110 the same way and it came out too large.  With this block it isn't a problem because there aren't any points to chop off on the edge.  I will modify the sizes a little smaller with block #110 (1 7/8" center square).

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Modified Garden Path (#43)

You know I am always looking for an easier way.  This block is no exception.  If you want to use your templates from the Farmer's Wife book, feel free to do so.   My block is slightly different.

Assorted Colors:
8- assorted squares 1 1/2"
8-assorted half squares-1 1/2" strip cut with easy angle (EA)
1- 1 1/4 X 18" strip
20 half squares 1 1/2" strip cut with EA
4 half squares 1 3/4" strip EA(where I have the pink)

Sew four 1 1/2" squares together to form a 4-patch; Add the larger background half squares.  Square up if necessary leaving 1/4" margin at each of the points. Next sew the 1 1/4" strip around the unit is log cabin fashion.  Square up to 4 3/4" (about 1/8" off of each side)

Make 8 half squares with the assorted half squares and background fabric; Add the remaining back ground triangles and the squares to the units.  Square up to 3" finished half squares with the EA if necessary.

Join with the 4 3/4" unit to complete the 6 1/2" square.

I am sorry I don't have more pictures, but I must have been in too big a hurry.  Actually I think I took them but I am not sure where the memory card is.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Mudgee, NSW Australia

As my daughter prepares to travel and all the paperwork that never seems to end, it is fun to use the internet as a resource of information.  We have explored the school website.  They have lots of different options than we have in the United States.  Sydney is so excited to see that the public school has uniforms.  This is helpful with our packing.   The thing that has her most excited-

Yep - Mudgee has a library (photo from Google).  I am sure getting a library card is one of the things at the top of her list.  If you want to look around Mudgee check out their website.  There is a lot of information there.  It looks like she will be arriving in time for the wine festival in September.

Do you think there are any quilters in Mudgee?

Morning & Weathervane

I am trying hard to keep the farming going until the end.  Don't feel overwhelmed by my series of posts.  I have had these cut out for quite awhile I just didn't find the time to put them together.

These are FW blocks #57 and #100.  These are essentially the same block except number #100 has a different color center square.  I am sewing them differently than the instructions- feel free to stitch them with your own method.  It is sad to say the as this project goes on, I am getting less persistent about accuracy.

Cutting Instructions for Block #57
Color #1
2 - 2 1/2" squares
1 - 2 1/2" X 6 1/2"

Color #2
8 - half Squares cut with Easy Angle (EA) and 1 1/2" strip
4- Quarter Squares cut with Companion Angle (CA) and 1 1/2" strip

Color #3
8- Quarter Squares cut with CA and 1 1/2" strip
4 - 1 1/2" Squares

Cutting Instructions for block #100
Color #1
4 - 2 1/2" squares

Color #2
Same as for block #57 EXCEPT ADD
1 - 2 1/2" square

Color #3
Same as for block #57


For block #57 - join two 2 1/2" squares of color 1 with one 2 1/2" square color 2.

For both Blocks:

  1. Join a half square triangle to both sides of color 1 squares.  Join those units with the 2 1/2" X 6 1/2" piece.  Square up to 4 3/4".  This is a little tricky.  Take extra care to get the sides spaced evenly.  I did not do this well on my first block and my pieces didn't line up.
  2. Join the Color 2 & Color 3 quarter square triangles together; 
  3. Join the remaining quarter square triangles to the half square triangles;  Add the 1 1/2" square to this unit (take not 2 of these go on the left side of the geese unit, and 2 go on the right)
  4. Join the units made in #2 & #3 to make a large triangle - Square up to 3" finished half square with the Easy Angle
  5. Join the squared up triangles to the 4 3/4" square to complete the 6 1/2" blocks

My pieces didn't line up well in the first block because I didn't square it up well.

  The pieces lined up much better in this block.  The only seams I pressed open were when I joined the larger triangles to the 4 3/4" unit.

I can't wait to see all your new blocks! I have 4 more ready to pieces then I will have to start cutting out more.

As a side note, you could sew the center as a 9 patch and square it up to 4 3/4" - it might be easier and make things line up better for you.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Wild Geese

I was surprised how easily this block went together.  I made an error when cutting, so I had to square up my pieces.

Background (yellow)
4- 2" squares
4- triangles cut with Companion Angle (CA)1 1/2" strip

Color 1 & Color 2(Darks)
8- triangles cut with Easy Angle (EA) 1 1/2" strip
2- triangles cut with CA 1 1/2" strip

Color 1 & Color 2 (Lights)
2 - triangles cut with CA 2" strip


  • Sew the small dark triangles to the background triangles AND squares; square up to 1 1/2" x 2 1/2"

Because I cut my triangles too large, I had to trim off a lot of excess on my flying geese.  I used this ruler to trim down my units.  I felt the lines on the ruler were very helpful in squaring up my units correctly. I will be using this ruler more frequently.  Perhaps that is why this block went together so well.

  • Sew the larger dark triangles together to make the center hourglass unit.    Square up to 2 1/2" if necessary.

  • Sew the units together in rows

I pressed the center row toward the hourglass unit, and the other two rows I pressed toward the larger triangles.

 Join the 3 rows together to complete the 6 1/2" block.  I pressed the final 2 seams open.

I don't know how big you want your quilt, but if you have been following along with me, you probably have enough blocks for a twin size quilt.  If you are going for a queen size quilt, hang in there for more blocks to come.