Monday Goals--Year in Review

Monday, December 27, 2010
Have you been thinking about goals for next year?  I have!  There are several sets of blocks not finished into tops.  Using half of them will be a goal.   My stack of tops to be quilted is now two stacks, quilting half of them is a goal.  I have a new "A" word project.  It's called "Beyond the Cherry Tree".   A reproduction using up some of my reds and greens!

Making half the blocks in that is a goal.  Why only half?   If I say I want to finish ALL my tops, its feels very overwhelming.  Why do I want to "get rid of" things I enjoy?  Although I love to finish things, sometimes its the process that I enjoy the most.  There will be finishes, I just won't obsess about them.

I plan to continue participating in block lottos, block swaps, and block making as a group. Donation quilts.  A few I SPY D9P quilts to donate using fabric given to me are planned.  I enjoy these.

Stash reporting.   It's a very useful tool to me.  I love to read everyone's reports.  I see so many different ideas and learn so much from everyone.  Lately family has kept me busy and I haven't had much time to read and comment.  That's a goal for next year too!  

My goals this week--enjoy life, quilt when possible, and plan for next year!


Sunday Stash Report

Sunday, December 26, 2010
I didn't buy fabric this week, nor did I finish anything.  Stash is ahead by 58.5 yards.  Last report of the year, I'm not planning on finishing anything!  Stash pulled ahead in 2010!

I have lots of finished tops to be quilted.  The small pieces of fabric have been used.  Scraps are only a small box.  I remember making most the blocks for a Heartstrings quilt from scraps on my sewing room floor!  

We've had a wonderful Christmas.  How was your Christmas?  Are you full of cookies?  (We are!) 

Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Count Down to Christmas

Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Is everyone counting down to Christmas?  Today I mixed up 3 batches of cookies.  Tomorrow my sister Kathy is coming over, we will bake those last batches, make popcorn balls and haystacks.  A list of foods for family is prepared, the ingredients bought.  I will wrap a few presents tomorrow.  

I've been working on the "A" thing.  There are 27 Two Lips blocks completed.  I have pieces ready for more.  

If you look closely, I made a block using my Japanese Royalty fabric.  I need to use more pastels in them.  This was the year to "get out of the rut".  Maybe not the way I had planned, but doing the "A" word is DEFINITELY getting out of my rut!  The pattern calls for 56 blocks, I'm almost half way.

An internet friend loaned me a book and encouraged me in the "A" word.  This block is called "Blueberries"--thank you Mary Ann!  

Don't look too closely, the little circles aren't perfectly round.  I've never seen berries grow perfect either.  In 150 years or so no one will care!

I'm off to charge my camera battery!  Don't forget to have your camera ready to go!  


Sunday Stash Report--Week in Review

Sunday, December 19, 2010
Busy week!  You too??  Yes, its the countdown to Christmas.   A few packages to wrap.  A few more cookies to bake--I saw a recipe on Judy's blog I have to try.  No fabric bought this week, and nothing finished.  I'm still in the "red" (nice try Henrietta--but YOU helped me add to the red stash!)  Check Judy's blog for everyone's stash report.  See how many have plans for next year!

I've made at least five more Two Lips blocks this week.  They are simple and easy to pick up when I have a few minutes.  No progress on the next set of red/white swap blocks.  I haven't made my two sample blocks, but I've been studying the choices.  

Saturday night my sister Kathy, her husband--my FAVORITE brother in law Paul, Ken and I went out to a neighboring little town steakhouse.  They had advertised a customer appreciation night.   Everyone was issued a numbered ticket for door prizes.  Oh boy!  First Paul won a t-shirt.  Then Ken won a $20 gift certificate.  Then I won a $20 gift certificate.  And before we left, Kathy won a gift certificate for two fish dinners.   It was a great night!

Less than a week until Christmas.   Remember to charge your camera.  Check for extra batteries.  Extra memory card.   Are you ready???

Monday Goals

Tuesday, December 14, 2010
I'm having a hard time with goals today.  Here goes---

  1. Make five more Two Lips blocks
  2. Work on the last round of red/white swap blocks
  3. Make two blocks from the Quiltmakers 100 blocks Vol. 2  

I saw this sew-a-long??-- at Teaquilts using Vol. 2.  I like trying different blocks--so I'm going to make some from the magazine.   I can add them to my stack of "Jay's blocks". 

A little cooking done today.  Potato Dumpling soup.  Some cranberry salad--I like cranberries.  Why only eat them on holidays?  And I baked some bread.  New recipe.  Hey--its a keeper!  

It's sweet potato bread--the recipe is from Judy's blog.  These loaves had the perfect texture and taste.  I used molasses in mine. 

Christmas is just around the corner.  Are you ready?  I'm not!

Sunday Stash Report and Cookie Baking

Monday, December 13, 2010
I BOUGHT FABRIC~!   Woohoo!   15 yards!  Two big pieces.  I will blame it on Henrietta.  She needed some backing, and I saw these pieces and thought of her.   Long distance sympathy pains?  My stash is ahead by 58.5 yards.  Do you think I'll be drummed out of Judy's stash report bloggers??  Check out how everyone else is doing.

Today my sister Kathy and I baked cookies.  Assembly line style.  

  • 132 peanut butter kiss cookies
  • 65 soft gingersnaps
  • 84 chocolate chip
  • 209 sugar cookies, almost all of them were frosted 

We still have one more day of making candy type cookies.  We are taking a day to recover, and hope to finish on Tuesday.  Whew!  

Did you work on Christmas preparations this weekend?

Motivation Friday

Friday, December 10, 2010
Time to check on my goals.

Red/White swap blocks were pressed, trimmed and mailed.  
I have 4 Two Lips blocks done
Uhh, I have only looked at my Christmas project~!

The turkeys are done.  I just need to wipe the jars and date the lids.

Organize the quilting room.  Bits and pieces have been done.  My sister had a large wall unit she was removing from their living room, and we moved it into my quilting room.  It has oodles of shelves and cupboards.  But, I need a carpenter to "notch" a bit out of the back where the floor and wall meet.  One of my heating/air conditioning vents is behind it.   I could cover that vent and not use it--but hey--this is South Dakota and I need all those heating and cooling vents!  My sister said she can imagine the shelves with finished quilts filling them.  Until its flush with the wall I can't put things away on the shelves.  

We needed some new pots and pans.   I didn't want non-stick, and I needed a thick, heavy bottomI bought Farberware Millinium Stainless Steel, the 12 piece set.

I used the large dutch oven tonight to make soup, so far I really like it.  

This weekend my sister and I are going to bake cookies and maybe make popcorn balls.  

The weather forecast for the weekend is cloudy, cold and possible snow.  Good cookie baking weather!  Are you shopping, baking, or sewing this weekend??

Monday Goals

Monday, December 6, 2010
Goals have been non-existent here for a while.  I need my goals.

  1. Press, trim, and mail next round of red/white swap
  2. Make five more tulips blocks
  3. work on Christmas project

And some goals that aren't quilty---

  1. Can two turkeys
  2. organize quilting room

I know that doesn't look like much, but two days I will be out and about.  The turkeys will take a better part of two days.  I've been thinking about Christmas cookies.  Its very cold here, so freezing them for later is easy.  I have several large Christmas tins that popcorn came in.   Cookies go in them outside on my deck.  The only BAD thing about that is Ken will eat frozen cookies.  Maybe I better move them further away?   

What's your favorite cookie/treat?  I have three--frosted sour cream sugar cookies, haystacks, and soft popcorn balls.  

Sunday Stash Report

Sunday, December 5, 2010
No fabric bought, nothing finished.  Stash is still ahead 43.5 yards.   I know, looks like I've not sewn at all!  

I've been working on the "Two Lips" blocks in between household chores and errands.  I've taken over the recliner in the living room.  Ken has *graciously* moved to the couch.   But, it may have been purely self preservation that helped him relocate.  Does this look like your house?  

Yes, I use the arm of the recliner like a pincushion.  I counted--there are five threaded needles stuck to it. 

Last night we started decorating.  The tree is up.  Not in it's usual spot.  Thanks to my sister Kathy (thanks Kathy!) I had an inspiration moment.  Betty helped too!  (Thanks Betty)  Last week Betty said "don't save your good things for later--enjoy them now."   So between the two ideas--quilts decorate my walls.  The quilt police would have a great time issuing citations at my house!  No fancy hangers.  Yup, often in the sunlight.  And, *gasp* my quilts are hung by using a hammer and T-pins.   I have 3 huge Christmas quilts.  One on our  bed.  One in the spare bedroom.  And now one behind our Christmas tree on the wall.  A huge log cabin quilt.  

I've never been able to take a good picture of the tree lit up.  Sue, can you give me some pointers?  My tree is all fiber optic.  Long needles that are the fiber optic strands.  The angels are also fiber optic.  We will have few presents under the tree, so I put my angels there.  I love angels.  The aluminum pitcher came from my dad, its very old.  He remembers when HIS dad came home with it, my dad was just a small child.  I will tie a ribbon around it, and fix those poinsettas in the egg basket.  

Have you put up any decorations?  My tree has ornaments that make me smile when I put them on.  Yes, Sarah, yours on are on there!  

Thank you!

Saturday, December 4, 2010
A few weeks ago I entered a give-away.  I won!  Teresa at Diddle Daddle Designs sent me these---

Three hand made potholders and a pillowcase with crocheted edges.  The pillowcase will go on the pillow I leave on my couch.  The potholders---maybe on my shelf of "treasures".    Thank you so much Teresa! 

Motivation Friday

Friday, December 3, 2010
Last week my phone rang while I was doing errands in Minnesota.  What a wonderful surprise!  My cousin Nancy called to wish me a happy birthday.  That really made my day.

Monday while we were unpacking, another phone call.  Betty called and invited us to supper.  She made "knepla".  Home made German dumplings.  

We ate, talked, and played cards.  Thank you Betty!

Thursday was spent with my sister Kathy.  She recently had shoulder surgery.  It was a day of errands and visiting.  After work her husband ate supper at our house.

Last night I weighed one of the Fairytale pumpkins from my garden.  Howdy shared some seed with me--thank you!  Next year's seed is on me!

This one weighed 14 lbs 7 oz.  I think in a few days it may be ready to can. 

Have I been sewing?  I've made a few more "Two Lips" blocks.  No pictures yet. I hope Ken and I can get the Christmas decorations up this weekend.  Sewing in between.  

Sunday Stash Report-Week in Review

Sunday, November 28, 2010
No fabric bought this week.   Stash is still ahead 43.5 yards.  I did buy a book, several spools of thread, and some needles.  I completed four "two lips" blocks.  My next set of red/white blocks is ready to swap.  No pictures, they are stuck to my wall at home.   Ken and I are in Minnesota.  I did bring my applique with me--

We're spending the weekend with Nick, Laura Beth and Mason.  We drove through Culver's on Friday, Ken got a malt and I a sundae.  

Mason used both hands.   Last night we were at the mall.  There weren't a lot of people--do you think everyone has their shopping done??

Ken is tired of turkey, today Laura Beth is making his favorite--burgers!

Did you shop this weekend?  What did you buy?  Presents?  

Weekend in Review--Monday Goals--Stash Report

Monday, November 22, 2010
Busy weekend.  Laura Beth, Nick and Mason arrived Friday night and left today.  We had a family meal on Sunday.  Yes, turkey and all the things that go with it.  We had a lot of fun.

Mason kept us busy.  He and Grandpa sat on the couch and practiced whistling.  Mason had time to smile for the camera.

It was chilly this weekend.  But Mason still likes to go outside.  Luckily the family next door doesn't mind if Mason tries out their toys.

Lots of "new" toys next door.  Thanks Heidi!  

Mason is a busy boy.  Nick slowed him up turning him into a "Mason burrito".

In between I relaxed by sewing.  This block I finished last week.  Just wanted to see what it looked like.  Another block for "Jay's" pile.  

Mason checked my sewing box.  Wore my green thimble.  Unrolled several spools of thread.  Was fascinated by my orange scissors he couldn't play with!  

One of my purchases was a book last week.  Yes, I used a coupon!  

 I found a simple quilt in this book I really liked.  A 1936 Kansas City Star pattern called "Flower of Spring".  Its alternate name was "Two Lips".  

Yes Jay, the gold fabric is the last scrap I found from your box.  All the flower blocks have the same orange fabric in the middle of the flowers.  I didn't have any orange for that--so I bought 11.5 yards.  I think this will be a wonderful long term scrap project for me.  The pattern has 54 of these 9" blocks.  

My stash accumulations--I think that brings this year's total to 43.5 yards.  All good though.  I'm enjoying my quilting.  

I'm not a "Black Friday" shopper.   Nope, you're going to find me inside reading and sewing!  Have a great week everyone!~



Thursday, November 18, 2010
Diplomacy---skill in managing negotiations, handling people, etc., so that there is little or no ill will; tact:

Ken and I have been married 32 years.  Not long ago I had tried a new recipe.  A new recipe is not always a success!  As Ken was valiantly eating I asked if he liked the new dish?  His answer --"well, if you don't like it you don't have to make it again for me!"   Now that's diplomacy!

Wonderful Wednesday

Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Would you like to eat supper with us tonight?  There will be plenty of what's cooking on my stove.  See---

Oh, that's not the pot of chili we're having!  That's some muslin I'm dyeing in coffee.  I haven't tried coffee before, it's suppose to be a warm brown.  Black tea gives it a golden yellow glow.  
Late last night I was going through the mail that had arrived while I was gone.  Most of it I expected until I got to this box--

It was very heavy.   When I opened it this is what I saw---
SCRAPS!!  I almost kissed that box!

Here they are unpacked on my washer--

See all those wonderful pieces??!!  I can sew a whole QUILT using them.  And yes, I have a PLAN for them.  

And the wonderful person who sent me their scraps---Mary Kay!  Thank you Mary-Kay--you've made me so happy!  All I want to do is sew!

Sunday Stash Report--Stash Enhancement!

Sunday, November 14, 2010
I took my coupons along on my Minnesota trek.  On the way I stopped and used a coupon (60% off one cut) and before I left Rochester I stopped and used another one.  I'm not sure how much I bought, its in the car and I'm not going out in the snow.  A guess?  Hmmm---there was a big piece of background, and most of a bolt of pastel pink.  A red stripe for a border.  Two more small pieces that are to be Christmas projects.  I will guess 32 yards.   

I don't know when I'm heading home, not before the roads are clear.  Maybe April or so.........


Saturday, November 13, 2010
Yesterday my sister went home from the hospital.   I drove to Mankato from Rochester.  I'm glad she was able to leave, last night it snowed.  Really snowed!   Nick worked a bit this morning, and when he said he pushed snow as high as the headlights on his van, he wasn't kidding.  
Nick's Work Van Parked on Street
His van is parked in front of their house, there's a street behind it.  I just checked, and no snowplows have gone yet.  Some parts of Mankato are without electricity because of downed lines.  

When Nick had shoveled a little path, Laura Beth pulled Mason in his sled. 

Laura Beth stayed outside to help Nick shovel while Mason and I watched from the window.  Ken said no snow at our house. 

I have a new book for Mason.  I think later will be a good time to read it.  Maybe with some hot chocolate.

No sewing, Mason will keep me busy!  

Thursday--Out of Town

Thursday, November 11, 2010
I'm in Rochester MN.  My sister had a shoulder replaced and I'm staying here while she's in the hospital.  I am good at fluffing pillows, straightening white surgical socks, and ordering her food.  

My Holiday cactus is blooming it's heart out.  

The plant is covered with blooms, I especially like the gold ones.  Almost like a new gold coin.  And when I was turning the plant, I found another new color--white!

There are some great historic buildings to see here in Rochester.  Next  I am driving to Mankato to see Mason, Laura Beth and Nick.  I was reading a menu from an Indian Restaurant, I would love to try it.   A few quilt stores too.  I really don't NEED to stop.  Really.  I don't.   


Sunday Stash Report

Sunday, November 7, 2010
It's going to be a busy week, lots of family things.  I'm sewing on my red/white swap blocks---not much to see.  But its confession time.  Yes, I bought fabric!!  5 1/2 yards.  And a spool of thread.  Some reds and whites for my swap.  A background print.  And a black/white stripe--I am making a block that NEEDS a b/w stripe, and I didn't have any.  

Without lots of figuring (I've never been good at math) I think I'm about----yup, probably 5 1/2 yards in the hole!  

But I'm happy with my stash.  Lots of finished tops to be quilted.  I've bought fabric this year, but my fabric cubes (I store my fabric by colors/theme  in wire cubes) have lots of room in them!  18 months ago they were full.  My scrap box is pathetically empty.  I have oodles of noodles in my noodle basket.  I can happily sew up at least 3 queen size bricks and stepping stones quilts.  

Last night I was folding fabric and cleaning off my cutting table.  Thinking about quilting.   I'm enjoying it more.  The process, I mean.  Even the blood pressure raising dreaded applique.   

How do you feel about your quilting? 

Motivation Friday

Friday, November 5, 2010
Beautiful fall day.  Clear and sunny.  Harvest is finished.  There is a lot to be done before winter.   In between I worked on applique.   I must be very slow, it took me three days to make this block--

A Honey Bee block.  It's going on my "Jay's Sample Blocks" pile.  

Right before the first hard frost, we brought my holiday cactus in. It spent the summer on the patio table on the deck.  The shortening days must have triggered it to bloom.  Now the buds are opening and it's a mound of blossoms.  There are three separate colors in the pot, a fuchsia/white, a yellow, and a deep red/white.    I was going to divide it, but it seems to be doing quite well as is!  

Its setting on top of a treadle sewing machine, so you can see how big it is.  I've been reading blogs in between bouts of other activity.  I'm not sure what to do with all my leftover Halloween candy.  I've been good and only had one tiny Snickers.  Ken must be working on them, I'm finding empty wrappers.