Monday Goals

Monday, October 31, 2011
I'm still a bit off track here, but I am sewing!  I've had a bad cough/cold and sometimes I was just too miserable to concentrate.   I didn't sew Henrietta's binding down, still saving it.  (I enjoy the hand sewing of bindings.)   Petey's blocks are all sewn together and waiting for the backing.  I haven't worked on my Secret Santa things--but I have time.  

So my goals for next week are--

  1. Make backing for Petey's quilt
  2. Work on Secret Santa project
  3. Make a backing for a finished top

Last night I was digging in my finished tops, and I know that having a backing ready with the top makes it easy to pull one out and quilt it.   Seamed a backing and set aside binding fabric with it.  That way anything extra can go back into the stash and be used.   

I was looking for a baby top.  It would go quickly and I wanted to try a different pantograph on a small project.   When I found the top, it needed borders.  Okay--borders will go fast!  Half way through the borders my foot pedal quit.  What??  Just find a different foot pedal.  No foot pedal exactly like I needed.  Got the tools out--a nut had come off a short bolt inside.  Put it back together and sewed the borders. 

Backing--I had a piece of blue flannel the right size--threw it in the washer/dryer--and loaded the long arm.  The quilting was quick--the panto is nice--now I need binding.  I save all my extra binding on a cardboard roll.  And--I had enough of a plain blue.  Woohoo!! 

I'm off to sew some more! 

Motivation Friday

Friday, October 28, 2011
Its been a busy week.  Harvest, errands, sewing, meals and lunches--very busy!!  But "Petey's" top is finished!

Petey's Quilt
I learned that sewing rick rack on a curve is much harder than a straight line.  I used some fancy tools--a plate to mark the vine curves.   A washable glue stick to glue/iron the leaves on--then I sewed them down by machine.  The edges stay stuck down and the glue will wash out.   Its ready for quilting.  The baby is due December 10th.  

This afternoon I plan to quilt on Henrietta's top that is already loaded.  The afternoon sun just makes it easier on my eyes.  (My quilting room has a large west window)  And I will work on my Secret Santa gift this weekend.   The binding I'm saving for when I want to sit in my chair and just enjoy the hand sewing.  I love that part--its relaxing.  

Liz reminded me today that I'm now a "lady in waiting" on the UFO Queen's list.  I've made the top 10!  

Have you been sewing?   


Design Wall and Goals

Monday, October 24, 2011
Last night I played with Petey's blocks and I think this is the final layout.

The white diagonals look rather bare, but they will be filled in with leaves and rick rack vines.

Last weeks goals--I did make more Petey blocks.   I didn't sew Henrietta's binding down.  I worked a bit on the 4 patches.  Next week's goals will be--

  1. sew the binding down
  2. set Petey blocks into a top
  3. work on Secret Santa gift

Yes, its already time to be thinking of Christmas.   I love Secret Santa swaps.  I love the planning and picking a gift for someone else--especially another quilter!  How could I go wrong????!!!!

I loaded another quilt on the long arm (one of Henrietta's).   I like having a top ready to go for when I've got the time.

Harvest is moving along, hopefully we will be done by the end of the week.  I still plan to volunteer this week.  The weather was beautiful yesterday--70F--and although it is cooler today--its still very pleasant.  I know cooler weather is coming--but I'm soaking up all this I can. 

Harvest is moving along--we don't have that much left--if we don't have more flat tires or broken chains.   Those endless fix-it instances that occur during harvest.  


Staying Focused and a Thank You

Tuesday, October 18, 2011
I have trouble staying focused.  Goal setting helps.  Vicki said she's going to limit her internet on weekends.  Good idea.  On Sunday I didn't use the internet.  Went to brunch with friends.  Did some necessary shopping.  Sewed for at least 3 hours.  Read.  Did I miss the internet?  Yes, but I got lots done! 

This weekend I sewed with a "buddy".   I received this email when I was lamenting I was #13 on the Queen's list to finish a UFO. 

"Get out the smallest quilt and work on it for just 15 minutes a adds up quickly to a finished project.  And, once you are at number 1, should you reach it, that spot does have a week to finish something.
So, decide on a quilt and start cutting binding.  I'll be sewing along with you on finishing a quilt."  Liz

Liz--you don't know how much I appreciated your emails.  Liz laughed with me and encouraged me, and a binding was made and sewn to a top.  Only the hand stitching is left.

Remember to say kind words and encourage someone.  It took only 4 sentences to change my day.

Monday Goals

3 goals last week.  I completed one!  The blue/white swap blocks have been mailed.  I did want to work on Petey's blocks.  But--I FORGOT THE BACKGROUND fabric at home.  Oh well!  I didn't load Henrietta's quilt--I had less time than I had planned.   But I did pull out a quilt of Henrietta's that needed binding--the binding is made and on--I just need to hand stitch it now.  

So my goals for next week will be---

  1. Make more Petey blocks
  2. Sew binding on Henrietta's 30's quilt
  3. Make more 4 patches

4 patches?  Where did the 4 patches sneak in???  I'm all about the process of quilting. That's my favorite part.  So when I saw a Billie Lauder video on scrappy 4 patches--I couldn't resist.

I have a heaping box of 5" scrap squares.  I pulled assorted colors in lights and dark.  And, one night when I couldn't sleep I got out of bed and matched them into light/dark pairs.   Yes--at 2 AM! 

charms paired up and ready to sew

And here are some of the finished 4 patches.

4 patches made with Billie Lauder method
I'm not sure how these will turn out--but if you watch the video about 10-11 minutes along she shows a quilt on the wall made with 4 patches--and that's what caught my eye!  Simple, soft--and scrappy!  She used a charm pack--good way to use charm packs--but I was thinking of that huge box of charms I have.  

Camping season/voluteering is almost over.  Last week I saw the Morning Glory's I planted by my camper were finally blooming.

Blooming at last!

Lattice Garden

Monday, October 10, 2011
The picture yesterday of "Petey's" blocks was so awful I scanned the pattern.  A few people wondered what the rick rack would look like as vines.  

I am making Petey's quilt rectangular instead of square.  The cheery primary colors and bright rick rack bring back childhood memories.   Instead of turned edge leaves I am considering making them with raggy edges.  What do you think??


Design Wall Monday and I Need Some Goals

These are the blocks currently on my wall.  The start of a baby blanket for "Petey".  I know Laura Beth is rolling her eyes--the baby expected in December hasn't a name (okay--his parents may have picked out a name) and somewhere I heard the name "Petey" mentioned.   So for now his name is "Petey". 

Design Wall 10-9-2011
Taking pictures at night yields awful color!  But I'm not a morning person so....!  I still need about a dozen more blocks--I'm making two sets--one will be an extra quilt.  On those white diagonal rows bright rick rack is sewn like a winding vine--and appliqued leaves from the block fabrics are sewn along it.  

I need to start setting goals every week.  This week they will be small.

  1. Make more Petey blocks
  2. Load quilt for Henrietta 
  3. Finish blue/white swap blocks
    Its been very dry and harvest everywhere has had field fires.  The dry grain dust + hot machinery + dry crop leaves/stalks has been very dangerous.  

    Field Fire South of the Campground
    About 1200 acres burned less than two miles from my camper.  This picture shows what looks like smoke--but is really blowing sand.   This picture was taken the day after the fire, see the sand dunes already on the road??  The fire burned all the crop residue from the field and the high winds made a dust storm.   Crop residue (what's left after you remove the corn, soybeans etc) is normally left in the field and you won't have the blowing soil--but the fire burned all of it.  Luckily we've had some good rains over the weekend.  Slows harvest but a fire is worse.   The weather the last month has been both "unseasonably cold" and "unseasonably warm".  This afternoon I had the central air on--in October!

    Here is a picture of my boss at the Visitor Center-Karla-with Toni and Eddie and I.  Toni and Eddie have left heading for winter in Texas. 

    Me, Karla, Toni, and Eddie
    It will be lonely at the campground the next few weeks.  Soon I will be done for the year.  But we'll be back next year!  

    And a few random pictures---

    Katie and Award
    Katie received an award.   Congratulations Katie!
    Spillway Gates Closed
    There are still some spillway gates open.  They closed them while they were putting a buoy line across with a boat. Doesn't it look peaceful?

    I'm Holding a Bat
    Yes, my hands are inside those gloves.  We have "bat gear"--a long handled net and heavy leather gloves to catch the bats.   We take them outside and transfer them to a tree.  

    Bat in Tree
    He quickly crawled about 10 feet up the tree after I released him.  

    I'm not a squeamish person.  The Visitor Center has three story glass windows.   Birds bounce off them all the time.  Once in a while we have a casualty.   This bird was unusual.  Yes, I took the corpse and measured it with lots of photos.   A bird we usually don't see--a Merlin.  This was either a female or an juvenile.  The pictures went to professor in MN who could identify it.

    And if you are wondering what happened to the bird, it went in the freezer!   Since it is a somewhat rare sighting for that area, it may go to the taxidermist and be mounted for one of the displays.


    Relaxing Sunday

    Sunday, October 2, 2011
    Another beautiful day.  75F with a breeze.   Ken came down to the camper because he had a combine part ordered and you KNOW what happened.  Half the parts aren't here.  He wanted to go home, but now is waiting until tomorrow since the other part should arrive then.   

    Last week we had a few days that looked like this---

    photo from internet

    Very windy!!   We were "unseasonably cold" and now we are "unseasonably warm".    I LIKE it!!

    I have a whine.  If you don't want to hear it--that's ok!!  Skip this part!  We have a few apple trees on our farm.   (We live in town now--but still have the farm)  Tuesday Ken said my little apple tree had lots of nice apples on it--should he pick them for me?  Yes!  Two days later Ken went back with boxes and buckets.  Someone stole EVERY LAST APPLE!  This is the 2nd time--last time they cleaned off my big Granny Smith tree.  There were plenty of apples--if someone had asked I know we would have shared them.  I just don't understand the greediness.