Saturday, December 20, 2008

Cookie Exchange

Today was the cookie exchange for the Silver Thimble Quilt Club group. I am so excited that we are getting back together. It was great to see everyone today, and to exchange cookies. Becky, Gretchen, Karen, and Cindi were there among others. I think we all enjoyed just having a moment to ourselves. Pat gave us all of the info on our new quilt group that will start meeting again in January. Pat had some wonderful quilts to show for the next quarter. Of course I signed up for two of them. Pat is a wonderful designer. If you aren't familiar with her work you should checkout her website Since I signed up for two more projects I need to get busy on some of the ones I have started.

Friday, December 19, 2008

The Night Before Christmas

I have the best job in the entire world. Where else can you dress in your night shirt for an entire week. I have been reading The Night Before Christmas to many of our classes this week. I have been surprised a the number of children who have never heard it before. Hope all of you have a wonderful Christmas.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Back Home!!

Made it back home last night. My mom was dismissed from the hospital on Thursday, got her home and settled in. Friday was spent doing things for her around the house. My original plan was to come back today, but decided to come home Saturday. I have a ton of things to get caught up on. But things haven't gone to as planned today, I had the unexpected task of defrosting and cleaning out the freezer. My husband killed the fourth deer of the year on Saturday, and there wasn't room for it in our freezer. There is now!! I also had to go picked up two quilts that I had quilted, one was a Christmas present, that means that I have to get the binding on and get it in the mail this week. Once I get the binding on I will post a photo, it is the Sassy Sixteen pattern for my brother's girlfriend. She has been hoping that I will make something for her. I hope she likes it. I have only met her a couple of times, and wasn't sure of her colors or tastes. Hope the rest of you aren't as behind as I am.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Getting that Christmas spirit back

My job is perfect for me. I love books, and working in an elementary school media center gives me a chance to share some of my favorite books with children. Several years ago I discovered Olivia, by Ian Falconer. I simply fell in love with Olivia. I have made two Olivia quilts, several Olivia pillowcases, and makeup bags out of Olivia fabric. The latest in the Olivia series is Olivia helps with Christmas, (It actually came out last year), this is one of my favorites. I was able to share it with several students before I left for Mississippi last week. I was lucky enough to even find the plush toy that went with it. The students at school loved it. Many of them have even started calling me the pig lady. Olivia has even inspired me to make some gingerbread cookies.

Keeping my fingers crossed!!!!

My mom had her surgery on Monday for ovarian cancer. The doctors "feel confident" that they got it all, but we won't know for sure for another week, we will find out then if she has to have chemo or any other type of treatment. I have taken time off from work to be with her this week. We are hoping that she will be able to go home on Friday. After getting her home and settled with her sister I hope to be able to head back to Atlanta and work. I have come to the conclusion that sitting in a hospital room is definitely not the place to be this close to Christmas. (not that there is ever a good time to be in a hospital room) Doctor just left, we can go home first thing in the morning. Yeah!!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Early end of year reflection

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. "

I first saw this quote a week ago in Reader's Digest, then again a couple of days ago on Pat Sloan's blog, with everything that has been going on in my life this year I am definitely trying to life my life as though everything is a miracle. I have always tried to look on the positive side of things but sometimes that is difficult. This has been a difficult year for me. I had surgery in June, my dad died in September, and my mom is having surgery next week for ovarian cancer. Luckily I have the time that I can take off to be with her. The surgery will be next Monday at Methodist Hospital in Memphis, TN. I plan on leaving this Saturday, and will have to see how things go after the surgery. Hopefully I will be able to come back the following week, but I will have to play it by ear. My mom is in her late 70's, and it is major surgery. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers. With everything I have to do this week I don't know how much blogging I will be able to get done. I really don't know what my computer access will be while I am with her. I think that most hospitals and hotels now have wireless access or computers that you can use. I hope so!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

I know we still have a couple of days to go until Thanksgiving, but I wanted to make sure that I wished everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving. This year for the very first time in my married life I am cooking Thanksgiving dinner at my house. I am cooking my very first turkey. I have cooked a turkey breast before but never a whole turkey. I never knew there were so many different ways to cook a turkey. Almost everyone I know has told me "how" to cook it. I hope that it turns out OK. Thankfully I am only cooking for four people, not an entire houseful like many of you. I am also cooking my first dressing and stuffing. To me that is more stressful than the turkey. I am also preparing sweet potatoes, green beans, cranberry sauce, and popovers, and pecan pie. Fortunately I have cooked all of these things before. Happy cooking everyone.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

New sewing themed book discovered

I am always on the look out for books with a sewing theme. I saw one advertised in one of the quilt magazines last week and decided to look for it at the local library. The author is Marie Bostwick, and the title is A Single Thread. I managed to find it earlier this week and I finished reading it last night. It was a very good read. The characters were very likable and it was a plus that it was set around a quilt shop in New England. I had not read any of this author's previous books, but will definitely be on the lookout for her other books.

As far as sewing themed books go, I really like the Benni Harper series and most of Jennifer Chiaverini's books. I have not read her new book, I believe that the name of it is the Quilter's Kitchen. Most of the people I know that have read it weren't crazy about it.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Brrrr! It's cold outside.

Not quite cold enough for snow, but cold enough. It seems that winter has finally hit Atlanta. It was really cold this morning. I had to go back inside to find my gloves. We were up at our cabin in Blue Ridge over the weekend and it actually did snow a few flakes on Sunday morning. I was hoping for enough to keep us snowed in up there for a couple of days but no such luck. I love winter and the cold weather.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Great book

Last night I finished reading a really good book, The View from Mount Joy by Lorna Landvik. She is one of my favorite authors. The first book that I read by here was Angry Housewives Eating Bonbons. Her books are funny and thought provoking at the same time. Check out her publisher's website.

Monday, November 10, 2008

All Things Christmas

I finally got back to my quilt sewing tonight. I have the first border on my all Things Christmas blocks. There are two more borders to go. Hopefully, I can get those on sometime later this week.
This is a really busy week at school. We started our book fair today and are in the middle of our school retrofit. (lots of new equipment, including new phones that none of us are quite sure how to work. Projectors should be installed later this week.) I am hopeful that the worst is over.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

More Clothing Sewing

I had planned on working on my applique blocks this weekend, but somehow got sidetracked finishing a dress, and working on a jacket. The jacket is an Indygo Junction pattern. I love their patterns, they are very simple and always go together perfectly. I found a great print corduroy that is burgundy and a grayish green. I was lucky enough to find a solid in the grayish green to do a pair of pants.

The jacket sewing was on top of the yard work that I did. It was such a gorgeous day yesterday that I worked out in the yard most of the morning. We have three maple trees that have decided to lose their leaves at different times. Two down one to go. I also did some work in our little garden. I pulled up the pepper plants and the tomato vines. The tomato vines were still loaded with green tomatoes. I guess I will take them to school tomorrow. I am over both tomatoes and peppers. We had enough that I was able to can almost 40 quarts of tomatoes and have put numerous bags of peppers in the freezer. I will be glad this winter, but it is very time consuming.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Finally finished

I Have been working on an applique block of the month from Stitch n Quilt for almost a year. I have finally finished the six blocks. Six blocks doesn't sound like a lot, but when you have never done applique before it is. I am not one to start with something small or even simple for that matter. Here are the last two blocks that I did.

I can't wait to get the blocks sew together and quilted. I am going to see if my mom will hand quilt them for me. There are still some embellishments that will have to go on after it is quilted. I hope that this weekend I can get the blocks sew together and the border on. Wish me luck.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

National Chocolate Day!!

I can't believe that I almost missed National Chocolate Day!! I love chocolate! Who out there doesn't. One of my favorite ways to enjoy chocolate is with a cup of hot chocolate with marshmallows. Since the temperature was in the 30's this morning here in Atlanta, and it really hasn't warmed up that much today I am looking forward to a nice steaming cup when I get home this afternoon. My favorite hot chocolate flavor is Chocolate Raspberry. What is your favorite flavor?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

New Book

Most of us, along with being quilters are readers. I have found a new Quilting Mystery series by Terri Thayer. The first one in the series is Wild Goose Chase. Dewey, the main character, has just taken over her mom's quilt shop. The shop is participating in a large quilt show in California when unexpectedly murder takes place. I am really enjoying the book. It is one of those books you don't really have to think about too much. I think that so far there are two or three titles available. I got this one from the Public Library.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Projects in Progress

Over the weekend I worked on some UFO's. My new goal is to complete one UFO before I can move on to a completely new project. The first UFO to claim my attention was one started over the summer at Sisters. The name of the pattern is Firecrackers. I decided to use up some of my stash on this project. I went with a patriotic theme, red, white, and blue. While at Sisters working on the project my friend Becky and I traded some fabrics so we would have more variety in our scraps. I have most of the blocks ready to sew together. The only thing I will have to buy for this project is a backing and possibly border fabric. After completing all of the blocks I will have to look through my stash to see if I have a fabric that will work for the border.
My second UFO is a quilt that only needs the binding on it. I had originally made this quilt to donate to my a silent auction at my school for Relay for Life, but I decided that I liked it too much to give away. I think it will be a keeper. I have another quilt that is currently being quilted that I can just as easily donate. I purchased the fabric for this quilt over two years ago. It was a charm square pack plus a border and binding. I am slowly working through my stash.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Finally, a relaxing weekend!

Things have been so hectic around my house lately that it was wonderful to have a relaxing weekend, and the house to myself. After being out of town at COMO (media conference) on Thursday and Friday a relaxing weekend was definitely in order. My husband left on Friday, before I got home from Athens, to go hunting for the weekend. That meant that I had the house to myself for a couple of days. I truly love my husband but sometimes it is nice to be alone. Saturday morning I got up bright and early to go to the first Quilt Expo at the Gwinnett Civic Center. It was a lot of fun. There were some beautiful quilts on display. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera at home. There were lots of vendors there from various parts of the US. I am so proud of myself for only buy two fat quarters and a yard of fabric. Both pieces were needed to completed projects that are started. I also purchased two patterns. While looking around I ran into several friends, and co-workers. It was great to see everyone.

After doing some errands that just couldn't be put off any longer, I got home and started sewing. I made a pair of pants, all except hemming them. That hopefully will get done tonight. I did my Pat Sloan Good Book Club blocks of the month. Then I got out a project from the summer called Firecrackers. I want to get it finished before I start anything else. I am trying to finish one old project before starting a new one.

I also did some reading over the weekend. We have started a book club at my school, and our first selection is Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult. It is a very interesting book. I am anxious to hear what everyone thinks about it.

Friday, October 10, 2008

National Angel Food Cake Day

I never knew that there were so many strange and unusual holidays out there. As a media specialist, I try to be aware of all of these strange and unusual days. I will try anything that I can to get the kids excited about reading. This often means that I bring in snacks for either the teachers or a small select class. Today we are celebrating National Angel Food Cake Day. This is one of my favorite cakes, especially Chocolate Angel Food Cake! (Really anything chocolate) If you are in a baking mood here is a great recipe to try. Happy Baking!!
Chocolate Angel Food Cake
3/4 cup cake flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 cups white sugar
3 (1 ounce) squares semisweet
chocolate, grated
12 egg whites
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
confectioners' sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). If it does not have a removable bottom, line a 9 inch tube pan with parchment paper. Sift together the flour, cocoa and 3/4 cup of the sugar. Set aside. Measure 3 tablespoons of the flour mixture and toss with the grated chocolate.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer set at low speed, beat egg whites until foamy. Increase mixer speed to medium, stir in cream of tartar and salt, and continue to beat until egg whites form soft peaks. Gradually mix in the remaining 3/4 cup sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Stir in the vanilla and lemon juice.
Gently fold the flour mixture into the beaten egg whites, then fold in the grated chocolate, stirring just until no white streaks remain.
Gently scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Smooth the surface of the batter and tap the pan lightly to remove any air bubbles. Bake in center of the preheated oven for 60 minutes, or until the surface springs back when touched. Cool completely, and sprinkle with confectioners' sugar before serving, if desired.

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Shack

I finished William P. Young's book, The Shack last night. I truly enjoyed it. It is most definitely a book that makes you think about things, especially God and how we view him. I am so glad that I read this book when I did. It is making me look at the death of my father in a whole new way. It is making me look at a lot of things in a new way. If you are looking for a "different" kind of book I would definitely recommend this one. If you live in the Atlanta, Snellville area the author is going to be at the Borders on 124 October the 9th. I am not sure of times, you could call that location and get more specific information.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Mind Expanding Book

Books and quilting are two of my passions. I have always loved books, and will
read almost any kind of book. After hearing several people at the school where I work discuss the bookThe Shack, I decided I had to read it. The very same day my husband, who never buys books, came home with it. He finished reading it on Tuesday night, and I started it last night. I am a little over half way through it. It is the kind of book that you don't want to put down. It is one of those books that you probably either really like, or really dislike. The Shack, has definitely made me think. It is an extremely religious book, not the kind of book that I usually read. I think that because of the recent death of my father I am more open to this kind of book. As soon as I finish I will give an update. If you have read it, what did you think.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

New Quilt Sampler Magzine

I always look forward to the Shop Hop issue of Quilt Sampler. This is one magazine that I never get rid of. I keep them in hopes of someday visiting some of the shops listed. I have actually been lucky enough to visit a couple of the shops in the last few years. I got really excited when I saw this issue. Red is my favorite color and I love any quilt that has red and white as the featured colors. Yes, I was bad, I went online to the shop in Virginia and purchased not only the kit but the backing to go with it. It came yesterday! I can't wait to get started on it. I am trying to contain myself and finish two projects that I have started. Here is their website if you want to check out their shop.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sewing/Relaxing Weekend

This has been the best weekend I have had in some time. Friday night was spent sewing at Stitch n' Sisters. I actually finished a top and left it to be quilted while at the shop. It was the pattern Sassy Sixteen. I had purchased fat quarters for it earlier in the summer. I needed something that I could finish fairly quickly, since it will be a Christmas present. I really enjoyed making it. I have some Civil War fabrics that I am thinking of doing from the same pattern. The pieces fit together perfectly.
On Saturday I spent the afternoon at Spa Sydell. My wonderful husband thought I needed a treat, so he purchased me an afternoon there. It was wonderful. I felt like a noodle when I left, a noodle with really soft skin and wonderful feeling hands. I didn't do any yard work this weekend because I didn't want to ruin my manicure.
Since I didn't want to do yard work, I spent the evening sewing. I had gotten a couple of months behind on my Good Book Club blocks. I did the blocks for August and September. My goal was to complete the year's worth of blocks without
purchasing any fabric. I had some scraps of a turquoise batik that I was using, but unfortunately I have used all that I had. I am going to have to try to locate a batik that is similar to it. I am pleased with the way the blocks are turning out.
After an afternoon of sewing, I watched part of the UGA game, Go Dawgs!!! Ended up switching over to Pride and Prejudice and staying up until almost 1:00 watching that. It was a good movie, one I had not seen before. I have never read that book, now I feel the need to read the book and compare the book to the movie.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Catching Up, Part II

Just when you think things are getting better, something else happens. I had just about recovered from my surgery and was getting back into the school groove when last 10 days ago my dad passed away. Joe and I always spend Labor Day in Mississippi with my family, while there my dad didn't feel well, we offered to take him to the emergency room. I knew then that he was really in pain. I am so thankful that I spent that day with him, even if it was in the emergency room. The ER doctor found an aortic aneurysm and he was rushed to another hospital for emergency surgery. He came through the surgery but it was just too much for him. He passed away a couple of days later.
It has been very difficult for me. My dad was 82, would have been 83 in three weeks. It has taken me the last week just to feel like I am caught up both at work and at home. I have been extremely busy which has helped a great deal. I don't think that I could stand being idle now.
I hope in the next few days to get back to sewing and doing some things for myself. I did go to to my friend Sharon's garage sale last week. I felt just like I was at a quilt shop. I managed to get some great buys. I bought two kits, one is for Wear Warm Clothes from County Threads, I have had my eye on that for a long time on their website. I guess patience pays off. It was a great buy.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Catching Up

Where does the time go? I can't believe that I haven't posted in a couple of weeks. I have thought about it, jsut never made time to do it. It has been hard this year getting back in the school groove. The first couple of weeks I came home exhausted everyday and many afternoons took a nap. This last week I have had a cold. I think my immune system is still down from my surgery over the summer. Since I work in an elementary school, I will probably catch everything that is possible from the kids this year.

I have managed to do some sewing, not alot. I completed a pair of pants and a top that I had been working on for weeks. They were both very easy. The pants were from an Indygo Junction pattern. I love the way it fits. (I have an earlier post showing the pattern.) The top was a Very Easy Vogue pattern. I was anxious to finish them since the pants were a very lightweight black linen and the top was a white linen.

I also completed some pillow cases for the Conkerr Cancer program. This is a program that provides pillowcases for children with cancer. I was really excited to find out about this program. I have tons of extra fabric and it is for a great cause. The pillowcases can be dropped off at several of the local quilt shops. Check out the link below.

I picked up two quilts from the quilter, they are ready for the binding. It is all cut and ready for me to sew on. One of the quilts is for my dear husband's birthday the other will be a donation quilt for Relay for Life. Every year the school I work at holds a silent auction. I am donating a lap quilt for it. I also have out my Firecrackers quilt to finish. It seems like there is always something to finish up.

Hope everyone has a reat Labor Day weekend.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Twenty Wishes

After reading my friend Becky's blog about the book Twenty Wishes by Debbie Macomber (which I read earlier int he summer, and really enjoyed) I started think about my own twenty wishes. I know that over the years, I have "wished for certain things", but for the life of me I can't remember most of them. I don't know if that means I really didn't want them, or if I decided they would never come true.

After think about this for the week, I have come to the conclusion that everybody needs wishes. I don't have 20 but I have a start on them.
I wish to:
1. To visit Alaska again, my DH and I went 6 years ago and have often talked about going back.
2. To rescue a puppy/dog from the pound and give it a home.
3. To get better at saying no. (and start putting myself first, at least for some things.)
4. To spend more time with my parents.
5. To move out of a 1960's brick ranch into a two story house with a huge porch.
6. To perfect my hand quilting stitch.
7. To hike the AT. (at least part of it)

My plan is to revist this list frequently, to make these wishes come true and add others as needed.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Back to School

It was back to school time today, and I really didn't want to get up this morning. My husband must have known my true feelings, since he forgot to change the time on the alarm clock since the power had been out on Saturday night. He work me up at 6:30 this morning!! ( I usually get up at 6:00 on school days.) Needless to say I was rushing around trying to get dressed. Thankfully, I had gotten my clothes out the night before. I am not a morning person, and I need all of the help that I can get in the mornings.

Once I got to school and started seeing everyone, it wasn't too hard to get back in the swing of things. I felt like I had so much to do, that I didn't know where to start. I finally got my "to do" list going and and organized and ready for whatever tomorrow brings.

There probably won't be a lot of sewing at my house this week. I would like to finish the "Firecrackers" quilt I started at Sisters last month.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Let Your Inner Freak Out

Since things have been so crazy around our house this summer we didn't go on a real vacation. We went to Asheville, NC on Friday for their Bele Chere festival, it is held the last weekend of July. There are lots of arts and crafts booths plus all kinds of music concerts. The concerts range from Bluegrass to Hard Rock. The best thing about all of the concerts, they are free. Friday night we listened to Balsam Range, a Bluegrass group, and on Saturday we wandered around and listened to various groups. This is our fourth year going to Bele Chere. It is a lot of fun. There is one thing you definitely have to bring to the festival: an open mind. As the local paper put it, make sure that you bring an open mind because many people use this as an excuse to "let their inner freak out". (As did the person in the photo) This caused Joe and I to have an interesting discussion. Do you have an inner Freak? After a long discussion Joe decided that he missed out on the inner freak gene. I agreed with him 100%. We both came to the conclusion that I had inherited an inner freak gene, it had just never been encouraged to blossom. I think with very little encouragement I could Freak with the best of them. How about you do you have an inner freak? What is the freakiest thing you have ever done?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Getting back in the groove!

After a recovery day yesterday, I am getting back in the groove today. I have two projects for the day. I want to work on my Firecrackers quilt started last week at Sisters, (I haven't touched it since Friday.) and I have a pair of pants cut out. I decided I needed to make some back to school clothes. The pattern I am making is the Artisan Pant by Indygo Junction. This is the second time I have used one of their patterns and I really like them. I thought these pants would be great for school. They have elastic in the waist, which I am really into these days. The pair I have cut out is black, if I like the way they fit, I have a brown pinstripe that I will probably make also.
This is one reason my stash is soooo big. I have two different ones, one for quilting fabric and one for clothing fabric. The quilting one is much much bigger. The clothing stash only has the basics in it, however, I have found myself digging into it more and more lately. I even found fabric to make a top to go with the pants. Getting the pants and a top done, will probably take me through next week, then it is off to school.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Missing My Sisters

Yesterday was one of the best, and I do mean best days of my entire summer. I met at the local quilt shop for Sitch'n Sisters, it was so relaxing. Sitch'n Sisters is held two weekends a month at one of our local quilt shops. During the school year I have to go at night, but in the summer I try to attend the day time sessions. There is a monthly project you work on or you can "do your own thing." Pay Wys is our fearless leader, or Sister Superior as she is more commonly called. Many of the projects are her own designs, which are wonderful. I had to miss last month because of my surgery, so I definitely wanted to get there this month. The project his month was called Firecrackers. The shop had a kit that you could purchase but I decided to use up some of my stash for the project. Since the name of the quilt was Firecrackers. I went with a red, white and blue theme. My friend Becky was doing the same color way, so we switched out some fabrics. Another good friend, Kristie was also using up stash charm packs. Her quilt will have a vintage calico look. Very nice! Of course I didn't finish my top, even though it was very simple. This is as much a social occasion as anything. Becky headed home for dinner out with her family and Krisitie was staying for the evening, I had to get home as I had company coming for the weekend. That is why I am missing my sisters today, Becky and Kristie are back there today, probably have already finished that project and working on another. Have a great day sewing!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Good Book Blocks

I am usually horrible at keeping up with Block of the Month programs. I have been fairly successful with the Pat Sloan blocks that are done with her book club. I had gotten behind, but today I managed to make both June and July. I have to admit I got carried away and decided to do the blocks in two color ways. I am really enjoying the books and completing the blocks.

I also managed to get the binding sewn on a small lap quilt yesterday. (In case you can't tell red is my favorite color.) I purchased the fabric last year while on our local shop hop with my friends Becky, Gretchen, Pat, and Debbie. I am getting some of my fabric put together and out of my stash. I have two other tops that I need to get the binding on.

I also completed my stash pot pie blocks. It has taken me two days to decide how to lay the blocks out. I have never done a quilt on point before, so it has taken me a while to get it together.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Great Read

I had the best book to read over the Fourth of July weekend, the new Emile Richards book: Sister's Choice. I was the very first person to get it from my local library. It is part of her Shenandoah Album series. I had hoped that I would be able to pick it up before the holiday. My husband and I were heading up to our cabin in Blue Ridge and I wanted a really good book to read. I started it Thursday morning and finished it Sunday afternoon. It wouldn't have taken so long but I did have to stop occasionally and do some other things like cook. If you are looking for a good book to read, I definitely recommend this one.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Limited Stash Busting

A couple of days before I went into the hospital, I too a Stash Pot Pie class. I thought this would be the perfect way to deplete my stash. I loved the pattern and realized that I had more than plenty black, red, and neutral scraps to complete the quilt. The only thing I will have to purchase is a backing and possibly an outer border. During the class I was able to complete three blocks, only 33 more to go! I did go to my sewing room for about thirty minutes yesterday, that was really my first time to do any sewing since I had surgery. I think if I limit myself to no more than 30 minutes a day for a while I can get some blocks complete without doing too much.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Quilt Outing

It was so good to get out of the house today after being cooped up inside for almost a week. (The only time I have been out of the house in the last week was for a checkup at the doctor and a quick trip to the grocery store. ) Many thanks to my friend Becky who came and picked up me for a trip to Sweet Home Quilts. It was so much fun to get out with a fellow quilter. We enjoyed chatting on the drive over, quilts, books, school, and just life in general. We both had a list, and I think Becky stuck to hers better than I did. I saw a cute bag pattern the minute we walked in the door that just called my name. The bag is made from a jelly roll, unfortunately they didn't have any that I liked, so I had to create my own jelly roll. I selected Shangri La by Moda. I can't wait to get started on it. I love to make bags, and this pattern is a really good size, not too big and not too small.
I think my trip was a little much, I had to have a nap when I came home. There won't be any sewing for me today, but maybe tomorrow.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Favorite Quilt Books

My friend, Becky posted a question on her blog about favorite quilt books. That is a really difficult question. I have so many! I did manage to pick out two to list. The first one Stack a New Deck, by Karla Alexander, I have actually used. The first one I made from this book, and the only one I have a photo of is a crazy heart quilt. I made it for one of my husband's cousin's who was undergoing treatment for cancer. I really enjoyed making this quilt. It was super easy, and turned out really great. I would love to do another quilt like this, in different colors. ( You can see also from the photo that I am standing in my "old kitchen". We quickly took this photo before putting the quilt in the mail.)

Another favorite quilt book is the Creative Quilt Collection, Volume One from that Patchwork Place. I have yet to make a quilt from this book, but there are several patterns that I would love to do. The quilt on the front is what prompted me to purchase it. Someday I hope to make this quilt, I think it would be a great quilt to make scrappy and use up some of my stash. Whenever I see a quilt book that has a star pattern on the front I have to look at it. My two favorite quilt patterns are anything with stars or a log cabin. What is your favorite book?

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

I'm Back!!!

Friday the 13th was definitely not one of my better days. I had a total abdominal hysterectomy. My incision is about 6 inches long, which is making it a little hard to manuever. I came home from the hospital Sunday night, and spent most of yesterday sleeping. I go back to the doctor on Friday to get the results of the biopsy. I am keeping my fingers crossed that everything is ok. I have managed to stay awake most of today, only one nap so far. I even managed to work on some stitchery. I am working on the Ring in the New Year Blocks. I completed one today, which brings my total up to 5. I hope to finish the others soon.

My husband has been wonderful during this difficult time. He is making sure that I don't try to do too much to soon, which I would probably do if he weren't here.

Hope to post some pics of my stitchery later in the week.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

New Kitchen

You can basically say that our kitchen is finished. There have been some issues with the floor. When the contractors moved the refrigerator back they scratched the new floor that they had just installed. Needless to say we weren't too happy about that. We are trying to get that taken care of. I really do like everything. I don't know how it happened but I ended up with less space and a kitchen is definitely a place you don't want that to happen. I ended up putting several boxes of things up in the attic. I hope I don't need them any time soon. I still need to get a small breakfast table and chairs for the eating area. I looks empty with out a table. I guess I will worry about that later.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Stash Busting

Not one, not two, but three tops finished. I can't believe I did it. Actually two, of them were almost finished, I only needed to add the borders. The baby quilt is a true stash quilt made frm scraps left over from a previous baby quilt. My niece is expceting her third baby in December, I think that it will go to her. We don't know yet if it is a boy or a girl and this one has so many different colors in it I think it would work for either.
The one below is a kit that I didn't even remember that I had until I found it on Saturday. After I found it, I remembered buying it at Dream Quilters when they went out of business. It was really easy, a large middle piece and three borders. I did find out that you shouldn't hang on to a kit that long, there wasn't enough of the two outer border fabrics to do a checkerboard border all around, so I had to improvise and do the checkerboard on opposite corners. I think it turned out ok.

The one to the right, was a kit that I bought on my one and only trip to Paducah. It was another really easy one, simple squares sewing together. I did try to jazz it up by mitering the corners. This is the first quilt I have done that on. I think that they turned out ok. I should have tried to get the flowers lined up more, but it was my first try at doing the corners this way. It was actually easier than I thought. I had to take two corners out twice, one once, and the last one, I only had to restitch a small section.

At least that is three things I can say are no longer in my stash. Now I can get back to work on the Orange Crush Mystery quilt, that I am so far behind on.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Family Reunion

I can't believe that school has already been out for almost two weeks, and I have only spent two days at home. The day after school was out, Joe and I went to Saltville, Virginia for his family reunion. Here we all are at his cousin Emily's house. (or at least part of the family). We had a great time. The day after we came back from Virginia, I headed to my parents house in Mississippi. It was great to see my parents. I also got to spend time with some cousins that I don't get to see that often. In addition to visiting with family, I also did lots of odd jobs around my parents house. My dad is doing much better, but will never be able to do the things that he once did.
I came back to Atlanta yesterday, to an almost finished kitchen. At least now I can cook in the kitchen. I spent most of the day trying to put everything back in the cabinets. I don't know how it happened but we have less cabinet space now that we did before. That is a small price to pay for an updated kitchen. Hope to have some photos to post in a day or two.
I am ready to get to some sewing. Since everything from the kitchen was in my sewing room, I can clean it now and hopefully start working on a few projects. I have two tops that I have to finish sewing the borders on, then they will be ready to take to get quilted.

Friday, May 23, 2008

I've been Tagged!!

I've been tagged by my friend Becky, so here goes!!
The rules of the game get posted at the beginning. Each player answers the questions about themselves. At the end of the post, the player then tags 5-6 people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they’ve been tagged and asking them to read your blog. Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve posted your answer.Okay, seems easy. Here goes:

1. What was I doing ten years ago? Oh, boy, I had to think about this one. Ten years ago I had just completed my first year as a media specialist. It was a great year, I was out of the classroom and had a job that I truly enjoyed going to each day. I was celebrating my 1 year wedding anniversary, yes I was a late bloomer. We also moved into a new house that year. Now that I am thinking about it, it was a really busy summer for me.

2. What are 5 things on my to do list for today? Some days I have many of the same things on my to do list, which is really boring. Today my list included laundry, packing for a long weekend trip, going to the library, going to the grocery store and UGH stopping to fill my car with gas. (definitely not something I enjoyed doing since I drive an SUV.)

3. Snacks I enjoy. If you know me, you know I am not a tremendous snacker. Potato chips are probably my favorite snacks. Wavy Lays to be exact. I bought some at the grocery store today. I usually won't turn down too many snacks that contain chocolate. I love a good chocolate chip cookie.

4. Things I would do if I were a billionaire. That is an easy one, travel. I love to travel. I would have to quit my job, which I love; but given the chance I would travel as much as possible. I enjoy traveling out west and there are numerous places I would love to see. After finishing my tour of the west and southwest, I would start on Europe. To ease my guilt over quitting my job I would donate a library full of new books to the school.

5 Peeps I would like to know more about. I would love to know more about Sister Superior Pat. I think that everyone else I know has already been tagged.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

New Book of the Month Blocks

Kitchen Counter Blocks

These were tough blocks to make. Pattern wise they were probably the easiest, but I had a to move kitchen items out of the way to get to my sewing machine. I even plugged up my crock pot instead of the iron twice. I couldn't figure out what was wrong with my new Rowenta iron, finally looked down and saw that I had plugged up the crock pot. I am really excited about the new kitchen, but really anxious to get all of the "kitchen stuff" back in the kitchen. It would be really hard to iron with the crock pot.
I can't decide which group of blocks I like the best, the batiks or the more traditional ones.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Making Kitchen Progress!!

This is what my kitchen looked like on Monday afternoon. All of the cabinets had been removed, along with the appliances, counter tops and the sink. we were afraid that one wall would have to be removed, but luckily it didn't. It was very nice to see all of that old icky stuff being ripped out. I am really looking forward to my new kitchen.

Monday, May 12, 2008

New Kitchen!!!

I am sooooo excited, I am finally getting a new kitchen. We have lived in this house 10 years, and I have never liked the kitchen. It is very small and very dated. Our house was built in the early 60's, the kitchen had probably been redone in the mid 70's. It is definitely time. This all came about when our oven died, and they don't make them that size anymore. So, getting a new oven meant we had to have new cabinets, then we just had to have new counter tops, and new appliances. The contractors started today, it is really strange to have nothing, and I mean nothing in the kitchen. I have a microwave and a toaster oven on an old overhead cart in the dining room. Food, paper plates, plastic cups, and bowls are scatter all over the dining room. It is a pain but will definitely be worth it.

The new kitchen is one reason I haven't completed the May block for the Good Book Cafe. The title is perfect, "Kitchen Counter". Hopefully I will get the block finished and the new counters about the same time.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Great New Magazine

I am really getting into this scrap thing, I am working on Bonnie Hunter's "Orange Crush". I am anxious to see what it will look like when finished. I purchased this magazine last week, and have found at least two quilts that I would someday like to make. You notice I said someday. I would like to do "Let's Party" and Starring Geese." They both look like they would use a lot of scraps.
One thing I have trouble with is storing my scraps. How do most of you store your scraps? Would love some advice.
Happy quilting.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

One Less UFO

There is one less UFO in my sewing room. I finally got the binding on this quilt last week. I saw this pattern in a magazine a couple of years ago and tore it out, thinking I will make this one day. Eventually istarted collecting neutral fat quarters and yardage. I already had the perfect red batik to make the stars and the sashing squares out of. It is may favorite quilt. My husband even likes this one, and asked if we could keep it. It is definitely a keeper.
I have two more UFO's that are almost finished, or at least ready to get quilted. I need to finish the borders on both of them. Maybe I can get them finished this week.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Weekend in Gatlinburg

No sewing at my house this weekend!! Joe and I decided we needed to get away for a couple of days. We went to Gatlinburg for the annual Wildflower Pilgrimage, this is the fourth year that we have been. If you are interested in wildflowers it is a great time. The festival actually started on Wednesday, but since we both had to work we didn't go up until Friday afternoon. On Saturday, we went on two hikes. Saturday morning we got up to very cloudy skies for our hike on the Chestnut Top Trail. The hike was led by Aaron, a graduate student from the University of TN, and Ily Hatter an expert on the medicinal uses for wildflowers. Luckily it only rained for about the first 10 minutes of the hike. We saw some beautiful flowers. The one above is called Indian Paintbrush.

The afternoon hike was at the Chimneys area, the Cove hardwood trail. Our leader on that hike was Leo, a botanist for TVA. He was wonderful at giving us the common name for the plant. I can't remember the Latin names. I do good to remember the common names. We also saw a few rare plants: cancer root, walking fern, and yellow wood.
The only drawback to the entire weekend, was the biker convention in Cherokee. I have nothing against bikers but they were every where, and very, very loud.
I did think about quilting, long enough to buy a sampler quilt pattern for the 75th Anniversary of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. It is one that I will definitely do, sometime.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Pat Sloan Book of the Month Blocks

I have been a follower of Pat Sloan's blog for some time now. I was really excited when she started her Good Book of the Month club along with a Quilt block of the month. So far I have managed to keep up with the blocks and haven't' gotten behind. (That isn't true for some other blocks of the month that I have done.) I am even doing the blocks in two color ways. One is very traditional, with burgundy, blue, green, pink, and cream colors. The other color way is done in very bright batiks, turquoise, brigh pinks, and yellows. I think the batik quilt one will end up being a gift for my niece.


Today is Pigs in a Blanket day, I know this because I am a huge pig fan. Since I am an elementary media specialist, I know all about unusual holidays. I really get excited when the "unusual holiday" is about pigs, because I love pigs. My favorite character from children's book is Olivia. In case you didn't know Olivia is a pig, a very cute pig. But I don't that is what the creators of this holiday had in mind. I think this is more like it.


1 pkg. little franks1 pkg. Pillsbury crescent rolls
Cut each section of roll dough into 4 pieces. Wrap one around each frank. Bake at 400 degrees for 6 to 10 minutes. Stick with a toothpick and serve.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

First Post

I started reading craft and quilting blogs a little over a year ago, and thought WOW!! Those are really neat. The blogs I started reading were posted by designers and fabric companies. I didn't realize that "ordinary" people were creating blogs until several friends in one of my quilt groups started talking about their blogs. My friend Becky created one, The Quilting Book Lady, which I have really enjoyed reading. After checking out some of her favorite blogs, I decided I just had to have one of my own.

After many hours of hard work, (the hardest part was deciding what to call my blog) I have finally gotten around to creating my blog. The process has really been a lot of fun. One thing that I have found is that you can spend a lot of time on this. Hopefully, each posting will be a little easier. I don't know how some people can blog each day. Oh, well maybe this summer when I am not working. My goal is to post at least once a week, more would be great but, for now I don't know how realistic that would be.