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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Off and away!

Sorry, Readers, that I have been away from the blog since before Easter! I've been running hither, thither and yon getting ready for the big Cambria, CA trip. I leave bright and early tomorrow (Sunday) morning and won't return for an entire week!

I got this charity quilt done (from a wallhanging donated to use) and it is now packed and ready for me to quilt it in CA.

I've gotten the wedding commission quilt back from the quilter and the binding stitched on it and to the owner just in time before their first wedding anniversary. I've gotten the May baby quilt to the quilter along with having the diaper bag and changing pad completed, too.

I have three kits cut and packaged, ready to sew when I get there. I've also gotten the windows all cleared so the window cleaners can come on Monday morning and Hubby can take care of them.

Today was a birthday stitch day with my sewing group The Amazing Quilt Babes, and last night I finished up four 6.5" blocks for our monthly exchange. No pictures this time around as we were in a rented room at a Marriott and we worked on multiple things for the birthday girl!

5 loads of laundry all done means I can now pack my bags.

I also got a blogsite, complete with PayPal buttons created for some friends of mine who will be offering deeply discounted fabrics, notions and yarns. Check it out - you might find something you just gotta have! (I hope it all works right). They are the Fiberfanatics and they sure are a lot of fun to work with!

During all of this, I had to stop going to the gym - as a matter of fact, my trainer sent me home from a training session and said not to come back until a doctor said I could. Sooooo, off I went to a massage therapist, and a couple of hours later, I was seeing a chiropractor (for the first time). The long and the short of it is that I have osteo-arthritis in my L5 (the vertebrae right above the tailbone), and it has degenerated quite a bit AND a bone spur has developed too. After 5 treatments with electrical stimulus, ultrasound and some adjustments AND some ice packs. I can move around a bit easier. When I get back, I'll start traction therapy.

And last, but not least. Hubby and I bought a house!! Our taxes in this county and state have gotten ridiculous. PLUS, our house is quite large and not necessary. We close on the new house May 2, and hope to have this one on the market by June 1, but we'll see. We'll be moving into the state of Missouri, but in actuality it is only 8 miles further east than where we live.

You can see it here on live maps (and rotate the picture). We'll own the property all the way to the tree line, and through the cul de sac. 3.3 acres should give some nice vegetable gardens!

I think I have a lot of work to do when I get back, eh?

Sunday, March 16, 2008


What a surprising end to a busy week!

I've been puttering around, trying to get all the fabrics I need and the parts department collected for my upcoming trip to Cambria. 3 of my friends and I will be having our own personal retreat the first week of April in Cambria, California, right by the ocean! I'm am getting pretty excited now!

I've decided I am going to work on my Michigan fruit baskets, and Hubby has decided that the quilt now needs to be king sized. That means I have 52 more baskets to make. And THAT means I have a lot of parts to get ready. Remember these? I have about 20% of the half square triangles readied, but that's still about 400 more to go.

So, in the middle of this, one of my neighbors who follows what my art projects are, stopped by to see if I would be willing to make a lap quilt for her husband. I was showing her my ideas, and then I showed her this one for the size.
She gasped and asked if it was available; it was JUST what she wanted! So last night, I sewed down the binding, and sold it to her today. She thinks she got a bargain, and I am pleased with my profit - so we both win. Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of it after it was completely quilted, but you get the idea, right?

While she was here she asked if she could talk to me seriously about contracting for a commissioned art piece. It was my turn to gasp (inwardly), and we talked a bit about what she wanted. Her husband is an avid Bonsai horticulturist. I guess that's what you call them:) He is difficult to buy for, and what man isn't?, so she thought he would enjoy an art piece of a bonsai. She is planning it for her bedroom, and has given me complete liberty with color, size and materials. Of course, I couldn't let the idea go after she left, so here's my first sketches of where I want to go. Now, it will just have to gel in my head for a while until I get there.

The Kanji script is BONSAI-two words that mean tree in a pot. Nothing special there, eh? I did learn, however, that there are and sharis and jins in bonsai, which are bark stripped areas either on the trunk or a branch, so I can have a higher contrast in the trunk areas for texture. I also learned that all bonsai pots should have feet for proper drainage, and the shape of the pot is artistically matched with the shape of the tree. The kind of bonsai I seemed to be most attracted to in many different types of pictures was always the Moyogi, which is an informal upright. The windswept ones are just too severe, and the cascading ones, while beautiful, just don't inspire me to work on it in fiber.

Now, I have something to look for when I am out shopping on the left coast. I think I'd like to find something light and airy for behind the tree - maybe even an old piece of kimono silk? Who knows where this story will take me?

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Eye Candy for the Sewl

Here's a bit of what I've been up to lately. A LOT!

The first one is the completed 30" Broken Bento Box sample for Fabric Quilt's booth at Spring Market. The new line of fabric is called Crystals. It's quilted in silver metallic threads.

Next up is another Amazing Quilt Babes birthday stitch day quilt. The birthday girl, (Shirlee-back row, second from left) chose a Kaffe Fasset pattern, but modified it to pretty pastels and brights, and used Dale Fleming's circle method. This meant the background for the center medallion was whole cloth with circles added. The group pieced pinwheels and a couple of us pieced more circles for the outside blocks.

And last is the commissioned baby quilt set that is now ready for quilting. The pattern is "Charmed" by Black Cat Creations and finishes at 48" X 64". Ahhhh, relief at last!
The bag is from an Amy Butler pattern, and uses a TON of fabric for all the inside pockets. The roll that is peeking out is a rolled-up changing pad, made from terry cloth (inside), over 2 layers of polyester fleece, quilted to the teddy bear fabric.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Catching Up

I have been SO busy! This will be a four-letter-word post, so divert your ears now...I've been at W-O-R-K for the last 6 days! The LQS ladies all went to Florida for the week with their hubbies, so I got to be boss for the week. Not too bad, but all in all, I much prefer to be at home in my stewdio. So, I have a lot of catching up to do, don't I?

First of all, I am going to post my Bulls Eye quilt made from hubby's shirts for a new friend, Lois, who needs to see what this looks like completed.

For those of you who don't know the story, here it is:

My hubby got sick in 1998 and lost about 100 lbs. over several years of illness and recovery. He's a natty dresser and wouldn't admit that he couldn't/shouldn't be wearing his button down shirts that were too big. So, slowly, I removed them one at a time from his closet, never returning them. Of course, they ended up in my stewdio to be made into a quilt for him. Every week or so, he would call to me, "Honey, have you seen my blue plaid shirt?". When I gifted his quilt to him for Christmas, he was so excited! He said, "How wonderful! A quilt just for me?!! And it's plaid! It looks just li-k-e m..y p-la-id shirts???" If you look closely, you'll see that I added some other fabrics for interest - he really didn't wear musical notes or chickens on his plaid shirts!

Next catch up thing to attend to:
My friend, Karrin, tagged me a while ago to post 7 weird or random facts about myself. Here are the rules, but I will just let anyone else play along if they want.


1. Once you are tagged, link back to the person who tagged you.
2. Post THE RULES on your blog.
3. Post 7 weird or random facts about yourself on your blog.
4. Tag 7 people and link to them.
5. Comment on their blog to let them know they have been tagged.

About me:
1. I used to be a police sergeant a long time ago.
2. My favorite sandwich is peanut butter, mayonnaise and sugar on Wonder bread.
3. I can write with my feet.
4. When I was a child, I had a blind, one-legged rooster as a pet.
5. I have an extreme aversion to heights.
6. I still use Mentholatum to cure anything connected to a cold.
7. I can't carry a tune, but I love to sing (if no one can hear me.)

Next thing I've been tagged for by Carol E.

You're supposed to reach for the nearest book, turn to page 123, and type sentences 5, 6, and 7 into your blog. Once again, play along if this interests you.

The nearest book at hand near my computer is House Made of Dawn by N. Scott Momaday. A very difficult book to read, even if it was a Pulitzer prize winner. I am still contemplating why it won the prize. But, the exercise is interesting so here is my contribution.

"Transported so in the dim and dancing light among the shadows of her room, she seemed beyond the reach of time, as if age could not lay hold of her. But that was an illusion....."

And last, I've completed this year's sample for the new Crystals line for Fabri Quilt that will be used at spring market this year. As soon as the binding is on, I'll post it. I rather like the fabrics this year, so it was a snap to get it completed. Besides they only wanted one this year instead of two, and it couldn't be bigger than 30" - so what was hard about that, eh?