Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

Hope that everyone has a safe and happy New Year. I always make New Year's Resolutions, but usually end up not keeping them so this year I thought about skipping them but it just doesn't feel right. I finally decided on two resolutions, 1. Make the most of each day, 2. Finish one UFO a month. What are your New Year's Resolutions?

Last project of the year!!

I was determined to get the borders sewn onto my Christmas Lights project before the end of the year. I just finished. I am really excited with the way the borders look. Thanks so much to Becky, Pat, and Melissa for helping me pick out the perfect borders.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Lots to do, and too little time

You would think that I would realize by now that I can never do everything that I want in the time that I have off. We have two weeks off from work for the holidays, which is wonderful. Most of last week was spent in Mississippi with mom and extended family, it was a wonderful Christmas. Unfortunately, Christmas has become the only time that I see several of my cousins, it is always great to catch up with them. Hubby and I came back on Saturday, spent Sunday with his family and it has taken me the last two days to get all of the Christmas decorations put away and our returns made. I have to go to the grocery store today to get the makings for Hoppin John and greens. Then it is off to the sewing room.
I was able to spend one day before leaving with my friends Krisite and Becky to do a little stimulating of the economy. I managed to buy myself a couple of Christmas presents. One is a kit from Little Quilts for Josephine's Sampler, I was determined not to buy another kit, then I saw this one made up and had to have it, the kit features their new line of fabric, Tanyard Creek. Can't wait to get started on it. I also picked up a stitchery pattern from Crabapple Hill featuring snowmen. I even found the polka dot fabric that is used as the border on the pattern and for the stitchery blocks I am using a white tone on tone snowflake print. I like to have stitchery to work on at night while watching TV. Need to get a couple of blocks ready for the football frenzy that will be going on at my house later this week. Kristie also purchased this pattern.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Dear Santa

Did you hear....the wonderful folks over at the Fat Quarter Shop have an "in" with Santa...he's going to be reading the Jolly Jabber Blog! Word has it that Santa will be granting a few wishes that show up over there! I have to say, it's been a while since I've written to Santa, so this is going to be fun! So,'s a few things on my wish list right now.

I love anything red, and would just be sooooo happy to get the fat quarter bundle of the Cayenne 19th Century Reds, after all red is the #1 Christmas color.

I would also be very happy to get the Blessings Jelly Roll from Bannock & Patek. That would be a wonderful present to find under my Christmas tree. You can never have too many "blessings."

I would also be very, very happy if Santa brought me the Civil War Home Front Layer Cake from Barbara Brackman. I love any fabric by Barbara Brackman and it would be a great addition to my collection.
I think that Santa will probably notice a trend here, I definitely have a thing for Civil War repro fabrics. I live in Atlanta, the city that was given to Abraham Lincoln as a Christmas present. What better way to celebrate than to ask for my own little piece of the Civil War. Merry Christmas everyone.

Holiday Reading

I love holiday books, actually I love any kind of book, but especially holiday ones. I even have a collection of children's holiday books. I discovered a new one this year, The True Gift by Patricia MacLachlan. She is the author of one of my all time favorite children's books, Sarah Plain and Tall, when I saw this one at our book fair I had to get a copy of it. It is a very quick read, but very good, all about the true meaning of Christmas. The Christmas Cookie Club is another new holiday book this year. I can definitely see a sequel to it. I enjoyed the characters and would definitely like to know more about them.

I never know if I am going to like the Elm Creek Quilter's books or not, to me they are real hit or miss. This one I really enjoyed, you were able to finally get to know the new characters and revisit some of the older characters. It is also a very quick read.

All of these books are good, none will probably win a prize but they are entertaining and definitely in keeping with the holiday season. My favorite holiday book of all time is The Christmas Memory by Truman Capote. It is the first book I read every year at the beginning of the holiday season. I am usually not one to re-read books but I make an exception for that one. What is your favorite Christmas or holiday book?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Tree is Up

The tree is up, finally. I love having a real tree! Last year for the first and I hope only time we had a "fake" tree, there was just too much going on to try to get a real tree and keep it watered. Some people want a tall and skinny tree, I am more of the round fat tree kind of person. This year we have a Frasier Fir, and as you can tell our tree doesn't have a theme, our decorations are a little bit of everything.

The sock monkey cowboy came from Cheyenne, WY a few years ago when we were there for Frontier Days.

I gave this ornament to my hubby for his birthday on Saturday, putting the star on the tree is always his job.

This snowman was made by a friend of ours from one of the pieces of wood that was left over from our cabin.

Joe bought me this cute little snowman the first Christmas we were together. I think it is one of my favorites.

Christmas Lights

This afternoon I had the house to myself and I wanted to work on a Christmas project. I started step two of Carolina Christmas, but decided I want to work on something that I could actually have a chance of getting completed in the near future. I dug out the blocks for Bonnie Hunter's Christmas Lights. I cut the triangles and got it up on my design wall. I really like the way it turned out. Some of the blocks are actually sew together. I already have the border fabrics, so this is something that I could get finished before Christmas. My goal is to get it quilted and actually have it to use next Christmas.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Stepping Stones or Amazing Grace

Last night while working on Carolina Christmas, I felt like one UFO was starring at me, there was a quilt that had three of the four borders on and it was making me feel guilty. I stopped what I was doing and finished it. It is a Bonnie Hunter pattern, Stepping Stones. Earlier this year my friend Kristie organized a fabric swap with several of the Thimbles members for this quilt, the only fabrics of our own that we were to use were the black and white cornerstone pieces. I didn't get to work on mine right away since my fabrics "went missing" for a while, our wonderful leader Pat accidentally took them home with her and it was a while before I got them back. At her suggestion, the quilt is now named Amazing Grace, what was lost is now found. I do fell great getting something accomplished at this time of year. Who knows when it will get quilted.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Carolina Christmas

I can't believe that I am starting another new project. I wasn't going to, but when I looked in my stash and realized that I didn't have to purchase any fabric, (maybe the borders, later) I decided that I would go ahead and start. Carolina Christmas is one of Bonnie Hunter's mystery quilts. The mystery actually started the day after Thanksgiving, but I am just now starting mine. I knew when I decided to start it that there was no way I could keep with up the clues. I think clue number 4 is already out, and I have just finished cutting the strips for clue number 1. My goal for next year is to do some major stash busting, and I thought this would give me a head start on it. Anyone else out there following along with Bonnie's mystery?

Saturday, December 5, 2009

I won!!

I never win anything, but I did last week. I won Melissa's giveaway from Sweet Home Quilts. Each Friday Melissa announces a give away and I was the lucky winner of not one but five different patterns featuring Moda fabric. I was really excited to get them, as I had almost purchased two of them in the past. Check out her blog for future give aways.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

It's beginning to look a lot like.......

Christmas is my all time favorite holiday. I shop for Christmas year around, work on Christmas gifts year around and plan my decorations. I decorate every room in the house. I started decorating over the weekend, I don't have my tree yet, since we get a live tree, that will come next week. I did get out all of my nutcrackers, or the little wooden b*******, as my hubby calls them. I really think that he hates them, he has even had nightmares about them. He shouldn't dislike them so much since he started my nutcracker collection. The first Christmas we were dating, I found one that I liked and he bought it for me. That one was followed by a couple of others that same year.

The next year my relatives started buying them for me. I have all different sizes and kinds.
One of my favorites is the little one int he photo above, a friend of mine brought it to me from Germany. I actually have three from Germany that friends have brought me.

I also have out my Christmas Cactus, which always bloom at Thanksgiving. They were really pretty this year. I have lots more decorations, but in my mind, if I bring them out a little at a time, my husband won't get to upset. He says that he doesn't like Christmas, but I really think that he does, he just doesn't like shopping.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving (a few days early)

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is almost here. This year has really flown by!!! I am heading up to the cabin tomorrow and Thanksgiving with Joe's mom. Since we married, we alternate the major holidays with our families. This year Thanksgiving with Joe's family and Christmas with my family. I love spending the holidays with family, but sometimes wonder what it would be like to spend a holiday in my own house. I'm not really complaining, I am so thankful that we have family to spend the holidays with. I really have a lot to be thankful for this year, my mom is in good health, there is no sign of cancer, and she is adjusting to living alone. My brother has a wonderful woman in his life who makes him extremely happy, my niece increased the family by one, there is finally a little girl in the family. Anna was the last girl and she is 30 now. My aunt is doing well while dealing with ongoing hearth issues. Joe's family is in good health. But, what I am most thankful for is my wonderful and caring husband. I don't know what I would do without him. Sharing my life with him is "simply the best". Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Thimbles Weekend

It seems like forever since we have had a Thimbles sewing weekend. Of course I probably feel that way since I didn't make it last month. I had a great time. Our fearless leader started the day describing two of the quilts for our next quarter. They are both stunning. You can see them in the background. The one on the left a Hunter Star pattern and the fabric is from Moda. The one on the right is a scrap quilt from the book 40 Fabulous Quilts. The quilt for March will be a surprise.

I really enjoyed catching up with fellow Thimbles Becky and Kristie. Becky was working on one of Pat's patterns, White Chocolate. Kristie is definitely into applique, and was working on a Bunny Hill pattern featuring Scotties. I was trying to finish up a Bonnie Hunter quilt that was started in the summer. I already had all of the blocks together, managed to get them sewn into rows and got the first border on. I plan on getting the outside border on this afternoon.

There were some great quilts for show and tell, the star quilt above was one of Pat's. The blocks were a swap in her sewing group. I really like star quilts

The redwork quilt was rescued from a garage sale. It was absolutely beautiful, it was from the early 1900's and still in great shape. I would love to do a quilt like that someday.

The stocking quilt is another one of Pat's block swaps with her sewing group. Seeing hers finished makes me want to get my stocking blocks completed and sewn into an actual quilt. Maybe a goal for next winter.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Bull Riding Anyone??

Where else would the Quilting Cowgirl spend Friday night but at a Bull Riding Competition? You don't get the chance to do this very often in Atlanta, this isn't exactly the bull riding capital of the world. This weekend, the PBR came to Atlanta for the weekend and hubby and I went last night. It was a great time. We had great seats, right by the shutes. There is an event tonight and tomorrow night that I would have loved to have attended, but Joe left today for Virginia and I didn't want to go without him. I got hooked on bull riding several years ago when we went to Cheyenne Frontier days for vacation. We have been several times now and are talking about going back next year. I would love to live out west, maybe someday.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Raffle Quilt

Have you ever made a quilt that you weren't quite sure why
you made it? Unfortunately I have. A couple of years ago Pat Sloan was doing a block of the month pattern on her book club website. I decided to go along not in one color way but in two, this is the batik version that I did. I used fabrics out of my stash except for the cornerstone blocks and the small outer border. After I finished it I though wow, it is neat, but not at all my colors and what on earth will I do with it? This week our annual Relay for Life Silent Auction was announced at school and I thought my quilt would be the perfect thing to donate. It will help raise money for a good cause and get out of my house. The bidding starts the week after Thanksgiving, I am anxious to see how much it will bring. I will keep you posted.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Faithful Quilter Giveaway

Check out Elaine's blog at Faithful Quilter for her Thanksgiving give away.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

One success, one failure

Yesterday I tried to catch up on all of those things that I had not done all week. When we have our book fair, I don't do much of anything when I come home in the afternoon. I went shopping yesterday morning, I think I am finished with my Christmas shopping, I still have to go through everything, but if my lists are correct I am done. I still have some birthday shopping to do, Joe, my mom and my great niece all have December birthdays. After shopping I raked leaves, the trees have almost dropped all of their leaves. After all of this I decided to try out two new recipes. Joe found one in Field and Stream, (yes, Field and Stream has recipes) for Venison and Pumpkin Stew, and I had one a teacher had given me for Topsy Turvy Apple Pie. I don't eat venison so it was hard for me to tell how the stew was going to taste. I didn't really think it had much taste, Joe was of the same opinion. That recipe was definitely a failure, what he didn't eat went in the garbage. The pie on the other had was a success. This recipe is definitely a keeper. As you can tell from the large missing piece, Joe really, really liked it. The one thing I wanted to do yesterday was some sewing, but it just didn't happen. The only sewing I have done all week was to seam up a pair of pants for a teacher. Hopefully this coming week will bring some sewing time.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Fall in the mountains

What a difference two weeks can make. Two weeks ago when we were at the cabin all of the trees still had leaves. Saturday morning there was probably about three inches of leaves on the drive way, there are very few leaves still on the trees. Joe and I had dueling leave blowers, he did the driveway while I did the porch and around the house. We shouldn't have to do it again.

After leaf blowing Joe took a nap while I finished a hat that is one of my mom's Christmas presents. Her hair has started coming back after the chemo but not enough that she will be able to go without a hat this winter. She wanted one that would go with her red coat and her green coat, so I thought navy would work. Hope she likes it.

After Joe's nap, he decided to go hunting. I think I saw more looking deer out of the window at the cabin that he did in the woods. The whole time he was gone there were three to four deer behind the cabin. I managed to get a photo of a couple of them. I love to watch them and Joe loves to eat them. All in all it was a very relaxing weekend, now back to the reality of an elementary school book fair.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


This afternoon I had to visit the dentist for my annual cleaning. We were chatting and right before he stuck his hands in my mouth he said, Oh, did you know there were only 50 more days until Christmas. It was a good thing they had already taken my blood pressure. I laid there and thought about all of the things I needed to get done before the big day. I guess I need to kick it up a notch and get busy.

Trying to get out more

Do you ever feel like you are stuck in a rut? Lately I have definitely felt that way. I think part of that comes from an even that will take place in a few months, a birthday - the big 50. My hubby and I try to get out and I try to get out with friends but sometimes I am just too tired after work or with the economy the way it is you don't want to go out and spend a ton of money. Well last night I had the best time and it was free, yes free. As you know I love to read, and I found out that one of my favorite authors, Kate Jacobs, was going to be in town promoting her new book, Knit the Season. I couldn't find anyone to go with me, so I went by myself. I had the best time. It was at one of our local libraries, sponsored by the Georgia Center for the Book. I really enjoyed listening to her. Her new book, Knit the Season came out on Tuesday and we were the third group on her promotion tour. She is a wonderfully warm and funny lady. I had taken my copy of her book, Comfort Food, and while there I purchased a copy of her new book to give my mom for Christmas. The Georgia Center for the Book has wonderful authors scheduled for the next few months, you can bet that I will go listen to some of them.

Monday, November 2, 2009

How many days until Christmas???

This year has just flown by, they seem to do that on a regular basis now. I never understood when my parents would talk about how quickly the year went by and that the older you got the faster it went. I now know what they were talking about. I love to make Christmas gifts and like to get a head start. I have two gifts to finish for this year. Yeah!!! I like to think ahead, so when I read about this Christmas Blog Hop on Melissa's blog I knew I had to check it out. Sounds like there are going to be some cute ideas. I can't wait to see them.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Charming Girls

I just barely got this one finished. I started it a couple of weeks ago and just really haven't been in the sewing mood. I am happy with the way it turned out. This will be the new tote bag I carry to my sewing group. There is plenty of room for all of the stuff that us quilters carry around. This is the second bag I have made from this pattern it goes together very quickly (if you work on it). Happy Halloween.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Halloween!!

Can't believe that it is already Halloween, (it will be in a couple of hours). This month has just flown by. After a really busy week at school, I am looking forward to a quiet day tomorrow. Halloween is one of the best times to share "scary stories" with the kids at school. I have had the best time this week reading The Tailypo to our fourth and fifth grade students, it isn't too scary but I don't want to take a chance and really scare any of our students so I save it for the older kids. I have a sore throat from doing the creepy voice of the "mysterious creature'" but it was well worth it. The kids and teachers have had a blast this week. Now for a quiet relaxing weekend, Hubby is out of town so I plan on getting some sewing done, I have to finish some of my Christmas presents, time is running out. I have a doll carrier that I need to finish for my great niece, some boxers for my hubby, and a couple of bags that you heat in the microwave, I forgot the official name for them. I might take a break and go to Sweet Home with Becky, I never turn down a chance to go to a quilt shop. Happy Haunting everyone.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Pumpkins and Crows

Several people had emailed me asking about the pattern for one of the quilts from the Mountain Holly Quilts Show. The name of the pattern is Pumpkins and Crows, it is available through Log Cabin Patchwork in Hiawassee, GA. I believe that it is one of their original designs. I am looking forward to getting mine made for next fall. Happy Fall.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Cowboy(girl) Symposium

Where else would a Quilting Cowgirl spend her weekend but at a Cowboy Symposium. The Booth Museum of Western Art had their annual Cowboy Symposium over the weekend. It was very, very good. The museum is awesome by itself, plus all of the extra exhibits and programs going on over the weekend. The museum is in Cartersville, about an hour north of Atlanta, that is taking traffic into consideration. The art on display is magnificent, if you like western art. There is something for everyone, from bronzes by Remington, to a special exhibit on the President's of the United States. There were also special exhibits outside the museum this weekend, there were arts and crafts, a chuck wagon serving up great food, and a reenactment of the shootout at the O.K. Corral. Hubby and I had a great time, needless to say there was no sewing this weekend.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Ready for Halloween

Halloween is my second favorite holiday, Christmas of course is my favorite. I have a couple of Christmas quilts, and had never thought about making a Halloween quilt until I found this print a couple of years ago. It is very "vintage" looking. It took a couple of years to figure out what to do with it. I didn't want to cut it up in small pieces so I used it as the middle of a small quilt.

I went to my stash and found fabrics that would coordinate with it to make a double border. It is a small quilt, but big enough to snuggle under while watching "The Great Pumpkin."I even put a "fancy" label on it. I have always loved this saying so I found a graphic and printed it out on the computer. I really want to work on making better labels.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Mountain Holly Quilt Show

On Saturday I went to the Mountain Holly Quilt Show in Blairsville, GA. It was the first time I had been to this particular show. It was very good! I was really impressed with the number of quilts in the show. Most of the quilts were new, but a few were antique quilts. Those were really a treat to look at. Some of the antique quilts had labels that told the history of the quilt. It made me more aware of the fact that all quilts need to be labeled and not just with a name and a year. I think that will be my goal for all future quilts. I love log cabin quilts and the one above featured sampler block in combination with log cabin blocks. The name of it was Jamestown Sampler.

The star quilt was Scrappy Stars. It was made mostly from batiks with all of the blocks having the same background fabric.
Love this Halloween quilt. I took about ten photos of it, thinking I would love to copy it, then went I was looking at the different vendors I found the pattern. I decided that would be easier than making my own pattern, not cheaper but definitely easier.

This was another sampler quilt that was really nice, with an appliqued medallion.

This quilt definitely stood out!! It was done in black and white and was the quilter's first attempt at long arm quilting. I think she knew what she was doing.