Sunday, June 28, 2009

Mini Vacation

It has been sooooo hot around here that Joe and I decided to take a few days off and head for the hills, the hills of Tennessee. We left Wednesday night, spent the night at our cabin in Blue Ridge and on Thursday morning took off for Falls Creek Falls State Park. It is a little over an hour north of Chattanooga. We got there about lunch time on Thursday, with neither one of us remembering that we had traveled into a different time zone. On well, it really didn't matter since we were on vacation. We spent Thursday afternoon hiking around the falls and the gorge. It is really pretty there, but unfortunately not a lot cooler, the temperature was actually about the same there as it was here. While hiking around the gorge we did spot a deer having a late afternoon snack. The next day we did some more hiking, went to a lecture on the weapons that were used by the Native Americans that lived in the region. It was great just to get away. I even managed to cross the swinging bridge there at the park!! I am really afraid of heights especially things that swing over water, but I did it. Not once but twice, I had to if I wanted to get back to our car.

On Saturday morning we drove to Chattanooga and spent the afternoon at the Aquarium. I know we have a really big aquarium here in Atlanta, but I actually like the one in Chattanooga best.
It was wonderful just to get away for a few days. I am heading to Mississippi tomorrow to stay with my mom for a few days, then bring her here for a couple of days, then we are going to Savannah to visit with my brother. The next week is going to be very, very busy. Hope everyone has a great fourth, since I probably won't be blogging too much in the next week.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Fabric for Christmas Lights

Finally got the battery on my camera charged, it helps if you put it in the charger the right way!!. Here are the fabrics for the mystery quilt. I have already made the four patches. Most of those I made as leaders and enders when working on other projects. Now that I have those made, I am putting it away to work on during the Silver Thimble Stitch-in next month.

I finished another project today, a tote bag that I started a couple of weeks ago. It was a kit that I purchased from The Fat Quarter shop. I am really pleased with the way it turned out. It took two charm packs and 1 1/2 yards of fabric for lining and the pockets. I liked it so well I am going to give it to my niece for her upcoming birthday, and make myself one too!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Bonnie Hunter Mystery

I know in my last post I said I was going to focus on the quilt size quilt I had started out of Chocolat, well, I am already sidetracked. I am working on the Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt in Quiltmaker magazine. The mystery is called Christmas lights, the first part of the mystery is in the current issue of the magazine. I have picked out my fabrics and started on the four patch blocks. I promised myself that the only way I would do this mystery is if I didn't have to buy any fabric. After digging around in all of my fabric, which took a while I managed to find everything that I needed. I will take photos to post when the battery on my camera finishes charging. Check it out, I think it will be a lot of fun. My friends Becky and Kristie are both planning on doing this project as well.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Design Wall Monday, Fit for a Queen

I can't believe that it is Monday again, where do the weeks go? We had a very busy weekend, my husband's niece came up to spend the weekend with us, so that meant lots and lots of cooking. She is a student at Georgia Southern and doesn't get home cooked meals too often, so I made all of her favorites. With all of that cooking, (plus we got stuck in the traffic on Saturday on 85 South for almost 2 hours) I did very little sewing. I did however manage to get a little done.
I have to get busy, since I decided on a bed over the weekend. After going back and forth, and forth and back I decided on the iron bed.
Just in case you don't remember here it is again. Of course when I went back to the store they told me it would have to be ordered, which means I have a month to get busy
and get my first Queen Size quilt made. It is what is on my design wall this week. I got the fabric several years ago and knew I wanted to do something special with it, but didn't know what at the time.
The fabric is Chocolat by Moda, along with a Debbie Mumm fabric in chocolate brown that blended with it. My husband came down to my sewing room and I asked what he thought of our new Queen Sized Quilt, he thought I was a little confused.
I admit I have a long way to go. But if I focus, which I have a hard time doing, and only work on this one project hopefully it won't take too long to at least get ready to go to the quilter.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Shopping Trip

I felt the call of Sweet Home earlier this week, and boy did I have fun. I had actually forgotten that Melissa was having a sale. I needed backing for two quilts and luckily the fabrics I selected were on sale. I got a red and white backing for the Firecrackers Quilt that still needs the final border. I had planned on finishing it this week, but the blue that I needed for the corners is still up at the cabin. Hopefully, I will get it soon and can get it finished. I also found a great tan fabric for a Stash Pot Pie pattern that I made last year. I am really excited about getting the stash pot pie pattern quilted, it is one that I plan on keeping. I haven't decided about the Firecracker quilt.
I also picked up three great books, Just Desserts, Simple Comforts, and the new Jelly Roll book. I have found several patterns in each book that I really want to do, but don't know when I will get around to working on them. I am also really excited about a pattern that I bought, it is from Cake Walk and features embroidery on some of the blocks. I also got a great pattern for a tote bag. It looks like I have more projects planned than I can possibly get done any time soon.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Pressing Spray

I had always wanted to try the "fancy" pressing spray that the quilt shops sell, well I had the chance at my mini mountain retreat. Pat brought some and was generous enough to share. As they said, I tried it and I liked it, really liked it. I was planning on purchasing some, but it is a little on the pricey side (but worth it). I thought I can make that, I know I have seen "recipes" on the internet. I started looking and found one on Bonnie Hunters site. It is very simple, 2 cups of distilled water, 2 ounces of vodka, (the cheap kind) and about 6 drops of your favorite essential oil. I bought a gallon of water at Kroger for .99, a fifth of Vodka for 6.99 and essential oil at Joanne's for 1.99. I mixed up a recipe, used an old spray bottle that I had and tah da!!!! my very own pressing spray. I did make one change, I have found out that really cheap vodka smells so I went back and added more of the essential oil. It works great and I saved money to buy more fabric.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Monday Design Wall

This is the project that I started a couple of weeks ago at the cabin with Becky and Pat. It was a kit that I purchased probably about three years ago at one of the local quilt shops. The name of the pattern is Origami, bu Elizabeth Anne Quilt Designs. The pattern shows the quilt made out of oriental fabrics, ( this is the cover of the pattern, at the right)which have never been my favorites. The sample that was in the shop was made out of very traditional old fashioned floral fabrics, the sample is what caught my eye. I was very into that look a couple of years ago. Luckily I still like it, I can't say that for all of the kits that I have in my stash. The finished size of the pattern is 52 x 62 but I am adding at least one row on the side and top. I might even make it bigger. I have all of the blocks and the sashing pieces made I just need to put them all together.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Decisions, Decisions????

For some time now my husband and I have talked about getting a new bed. We are currently sleeping on a full size beautiful antique oak bed that has been in his family for years. We also have a matching dresser, and chest. Well we are at the point where we desperately need a new mattress and have decided to upgrade to queen size, that is as large as our bedroom will let us go. I have narrowed it down to two beds, after taking Joe to look at them today, we are no closer to deciding, he likes both equally well. One is oak and would be a great match for the furniture we already have. The other is iron and would be a totally new look for us. I really like both beds also, and don't really plan on buying another bed anytime soon. I have even started the quilt for it. (I have one block done, so there is plenty of time) Both beds are on sale so I need to make a decision soon. Which one, oak or iron???? What do you think?

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Earlier this week I went to a cooking class at Cooks Warehouse, one of out local kitchen shops. The class was on desserts, which in my opinion you can't go wrong with, the chef was from Morton's restaurant. He was instructing us on how to make their Key Lime Pie, Legendary Hot Chocolate Cake, and Sabayon with fruit. It was a great class, there were only 8 people in the class which made it very nice. We were able to ask the chef all kinds of questions, and he was able to explain a lot about the restaurant business. Of course the best part was tasting the finished product. The cake was wonderful, like a cross between a pudding and a cake. The pie was delicious also, a little heavy but very good. The sabayon was actually my favorite, it was very lite and the fruit that it was served with was extremely fresh and tasty. At the end of the class we even received a goodie bag from Morton's. There was a gift card for a free appetizer, and an apron. It was a pleasant surprise. I have never eaten at Morton's, but after this class I can definitely recommend the desserts.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

New Look

After blogging for a little over a year now, I thought it was time I gave my blog a new look. Little did I know how involved I was going to get or how long it would take. I checked out several sites that have blog backgrounds, there sure are a lot of them out there. Boy, I gave myself a headache just looking for a background that I liked. I decided that I just had to walk away from the computer, and come back to it. After taking a break to go to a cooking class, (more on that later) I found a background that I liked, or thought I liked, after changing everything over, I decided that I really didn't like it and maybe this hadn't been such a great idea after all. I mean I could be sewing now instead of sitting in front of the computer. But in the back of my mind I could hear my friend Becky, talking about how much time she puts into her blog and I was determined to have a new look before midnight. When I found The Little Window Shop, I was so excited, they had some wonderful backgrounds. I was scrolling down the page looking at all of the options they offered when I found it, Red Swirl. Well, if you know me, you know that red is most definitely my favorite color. I had to have it. After I figured out how to "get it" then I had to rearrange everything on my blog, and of course try to "spiff" it up a little. I will probably make a couple of more changes, but it is 11:15 and I am to tired to think anymore. Let me know what you think of the new look? How often do most of you change the look of your blog?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Happy Anniversary to Me

I can't believe that it has been twelve years since Joe and I got married, it seems like only yesterday. Of course we dated for seven years, so we have know each other for 19 years. When he proposed to me, he had already made the arrangements for us to go to Las Vegas to get married. That is what we had always said that we would do when we got married. It was a blast. I seriously recommend it to anyone, especially if you are older as we were when we got married. We were married at the Little Chapel of the West, which is down the street from the Luxor. It is the chapel from the movie Viva Las Vegas. We spent a couple of days in Vegas then went to the Grand Canyon for our honeymoon. If you have never been to Las Vegas I think it is a trip everyone should make once in their lives, don't stay for a week, a couple of days is definitely long enough. It was a great trip, one that I am thinking fondly of today as I prepare to do yard work.


Several weeks ago in one of my quilting magazines I saw some wooden needle holders. I thought they were very unusual and different. I tore the page out knowing that one of our good friends does a lot of wood working. When he was over a few weeks ago, to bring my husband a pen he had created out of an antler shed, I showed him the needle holders and asked if he could possibly make me one sometime. The only thing he asked for was the cork toppers, luckily I had some left over from some craft project. Imagine my surprise when he called and wanted to bring me my needle holders. ( as in more than one). When I opened the box, I couldn't believe the workmanship and the creativity that he had put into them. They are all beautiful. My favorite is the one on the right which looks like a bowling pin. It is made from sycamore, the others are either dogwood or bamboo. I can't wait to start using them.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Great way to end the week

Two of my favorite things are quilting and reading. I had a great time earlier this week quilting in the mountains with Pat and Becky. This morning I had an email from the library that a book I had requested was ready and waiting for me, Summer on Blossom Street, the new Debbie Macomber book. I really like her books, especially the Blossom Street series. I have read all of this series, and am trying to read the others. I need to sit down at the computer and make a list of all of the series and titles to figure out which ones I have read and which ones I need to request from my local library. If you are looking for a great summer read, this is definitely it.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Great Time in the Mountains

Boy, did Becky, Pat, and I have a great time sewing in the mountains. We left on Monday morning, made a stop at the local quilt shop in Blue Ridge, where all of us made a purchase. Then we headed to the cabin. Within 30 minutes of arrival three sewing machines were humming along. Pat was working on a king size Strawberry Pie, (one of her own designs, check it out at her website: Becky was working on a beautiful log cabin quilt called Autumn Ridge, and I was trying to finish Fire Crackers. Thanks to Pat for bringing her portable design wall I was able to get a layout that I liked (with assistance from both Pat and Becky, I managed to get all of the blocks together and the inner border, unfortunately I didn't have enough fabric to finish the outer border.
Sewing aside we had a great time! Becky had a copy of the new Jelly Roll book, which has some great quilts in it. Pat had wonderful stories to share from the Spring Quilt Market, (don't worry Pat what is said at the cabin stays at the cabin.) And the food was wonderful. Pat brought her spaghetti pie, Becky's husband had grilled us a chicken, and we had snacks galore. We are already talking about when we can get back up there for a few days, hopefully our schedule will allow it before next summer.
I had wanted to make a little something for both Pat and Becky to remember their trip by, so I tried my hand at pincushions. I found the pattern in a magazine during the spring, and during one of my trips to Sweet Home I found the crushed walnut shells that the pattern called for filling the cushions with. I have enough boxes left to make a couple more, that might be a project for stocking stuffers. They are very, very easy to make.