Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 Running Log

This post shouldn't take too long to read.... I really ONLY ran 55 miles?!?!?!!? Feel free to skip over again and get to the good posts after this one....

Okay---SERIOUSLY! I love volleyball, but it will NOT consume my summer and life in 2010. Back to running I go!!!!

Total: 54.63 miles
11/16/09: Mileage
1.84 miles (17:51) HR: 171
1.84 miles (20:19) HR: 175
7/11/09: MACC 5K
3.03 miles (28:03) HR: 173
3.25 miles (31:57) HR: 171
2.97 miles (30:59) HR: 157
2.48 miles (26:03) HR: 158
Weekly Mileage: 8.64
6/25/09: 10 mile bike
6/24/09: EZ Mileage
3.73 miles (45:30) HR: 158
6/23/09: Mileage; HOT
2.52 miles (30:09) HR: 151
6/22/09: Mileage; HOT
2.39 miles (30:01) HR: 144
Weekly Mileage: 6.25
6/21/09: 3x TP AI, FF
3.13 miles (34:13) HR: 157
6/16/09: Mileage
3:12 miles (46:14) HR: 175
Weekly Mileage: 9.11
6/14/09: Mileage
2.77 miles (29:16) HR: 166
6/13/09: Baldwin 5K
3.1 miles (32:10) HR: 180
6/11/09: Mileage
3.24 miles (35:51) HR: 170
4/16/09: Mileage
2.26 miles (23:15) HR: 168
4/14/09: Mileage
3.26 miles (35:59) HR: 164
4/12/09: Mileage
2.26 miles (24:58) HR: 160
4/11/09: Mileage
2.31 miles (27:26) HR: 157
3/17/09: Mileage
1.83 miles (19:36) HR: 162
3/10/09:Treadmill EZ Run
~1.5 miles (20:12) HR: 161
1/20/09: Treadmill intervals
~1.8 miles (21:00) HR: 163

2009 A Year of Quilting Review

Cathedral Stars
(Started: October 3, 2008; Completed: January 3, 2009). Donated to Stratford, WI VFW.
Smooth Sailing
(Started: January 16, 2009; Finished: January 18, 2009). Gifted to Cousin's son (would that be my 2nd cousin?).
Paddington's Class Act
(Started: February 1, 2009; Completed: February 9, 2009). Donated to Zion Lutheran Church's Baptismal quilts.
Lake -n- Lodge
(Started: December, 2008; Completed: April 5, 2009). Hanging above our piano.

Class Act Wall-hanging
(February 10, 2009). Created using the "practice" squares from my Beginner's Quilting class.
Class Act
(December 9, 2008; December 14, 2009). Designed for Beginner's Quilting Class.
Oklahoma Backroads
(Started: April 2, 2008; Completed: April 10, 2009). Nothing like taking a full year, huh? Donated to Zion Lutheran Church.
Double Delight
(Started: February 8m 2009; Completed: April 18, 2009). Gifted to Nikki as a graduation gift.

Chloe's Colors
(Started: February 6, 2009; Completed: March 28, 2009). Designed by 8th grade Algebra student, gifted to her at End-of-Year Awards program.
Steppin' Out
(Started: March 21, 2009; Completed: April 20, 2009). Designed for Advanced Beginner's Quilting Class.
Cathedral Window Wall-hanging
(April 26, 2009)
Country Spirit - QOV
(Started: January 18, 2009; Completed: June 27, 2009). Donated to QOV.

DWR-Helbach wall hanging
DWR - wall-hanging
(Started: May 8, 2009; Completed: June 29, 2009). Currently folded and may be used as a present in the future.
Double Wedding Ring - Helbach
(Started: June 8, 2009; Completed: July 16, 2009). Accomplished by teaming up with MIL. Gifted to Adam and Marie Helbach, August 1, 2009.
Grandma & Me
(Started: May 29, 2008; Completed: June 27, 2009). Gifted to parents for spare bed (and memories) :0)

Pinwheels and Prairie Points
(Started: June 29, 2009; Completed: July 1, 2009). Donated to Zion Lutheran Church's Baptismal quilts.
Candace's Stars
(Started: June 17, 2009; Completed: June 29, 2009). Gifted to daughter, Candace.
Barnyards and Prairies
(July 16, 2009). Currently folded in storage awaiting a lucky new baby.
MIL's Flowers quilted
Just a little bit of help for my MIL. She wanted this quilted up for a C'mas gift.

Perkiomen Daydreams
(Started: January 9, 2009; Top completed: November 21, 2009). Holy buckets! What a monster! Carol (Cornfield Quilter) currently has the quilt and is quilting it as her PIF to me. Plans---my first Quilt Show Entry for sure!!!
(Started: November 29, 2009; FInished: December 30, 2009). This may be gifted to a friend; plans are still pending.
Christmas Lights
(Started: June 8, 2009; Completed: December 31, 2009). Designed by Bonnie Hunter. Listed in Quiltmaker magazine as a 3-part mystery. It may find itself on one of the walls in the loft.
Scrappy Irish Chain
(Started: September 21, 2008; Completed: December 31, 2009). Not sure what the plans will be for this quilt yet.

Other odds-n-ends I recall...
- 2 Baptismal Rag quilts
- 3 PIF block wallhangings
- 3 Thread Chatchers
- God's Creatures
- Bag Dispenser

Goals for 2010????
A little bit of the same; donating to Zion Lutheran Church's Baptismal Quilts, donating to QOV, making quilts for friends and family "just because".

Final 2009 finishes...

Christmas Lights. CHECK!

Scrappy Irish Chain - a last minute UFO. CHECK!

Chunky Churndash. Well, not QUITE a CHECK! Afterall, I'm AM human. Three finishes in one day would be just a wee bit insane. Besides, I'm all out of batting, so I wouldn't have been able to finish this off today anyway ;0)

A wonderful way to end 2009---the entire day down in my quilting room!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Did you ever feel like you're putting together a puzzle when quilting?

often I do!

This was my status last night before throwing my hands longer motivated because I didn't know how to "finish this puzzle"...((Back-pedaling)) Yesterday found me by-passing Chunky Churndash because I was suddenly motivated and inspired to finish up Lucidity. And although this quilt LOOKS simple, for those of you that aren't border-making lovers, this would be a monkey on your back with all those lonnnnng blasted sashing strips!!! Really---it was like putting 11 borders on one quilt! As stated, this was my status as of 8:00 last night....backing ALLLLMOST pieced, and I simply didn't have any passion left after being 6 INCHES short!!!!!!! Bad calculation?? No, I just crossed my fingers and hoped it would fit...... sadly, it didn't..., after tucking Candace into bed last night (and seeing what I had done with HER pieced backing), I was inspired this morning to throw in a strip of left over blocks. CrazyMom throws these dandies into her backings quite often too. I'm growing quite fond of them myself. This decision meant that I needed to rip out the seam I made last night and spent a good hour piecing (and cutting) the extra strip for the backing...
But my puzzle play wasn't through...noooooooooo. Next, I went to my roll of batting, not really knowing how much I had left on the roll. 20 inches SHORT across the entire width!!!!!! Scrounging in my storage cabinet, I found one package of 60x60 batting, but didn't want to cut into that yet. Hmpf.... I should have taken a picture of the what the downstairs looks like right now, because I dug (DEEP) into my bag(s) of leftover batting, tossing batting all over the place in hopes to organize it somehow.... All sizes; some large, some long strips, you name it. I ended up piecing 8 total long/little/stubby pieces together to have enough batting.

Back to work....
...with my Princess helper. Caitlyn prepped my basting pins for me and even helped me put a few in. She was so proud.
Nothing fancy with the quilting. I chose one of my decorative stitches and travelled the length of each sashing strip in purple thread...
...and Lucidity sees a finish! Binding-n-all (just no label YET).
Plans for this one??? Not sure, but it's wrapped around me as I type. The colors are lovely, lines are crisp and clean.

And tomorrow---Goal: Finish Christmas Lights I'm ALMOST done with that one too (worked on it yesterday). I only have binding left on it. SO, I'm doing well on my goals I posted about last week:
1) Finish Chunky Churndash (We'll see how close I get to that, because I'll work on that tomorrow as well, EVEN if I need to stay up until Midnight!!! Oh, wait! I'll probably be doing that anyway!)
2) Finish Lucidity. CHECK!
3) Finish Christmas Lights . CHECK! (Almost) I'll only need a couple of hours to check this one off my list.
4) Start Carolina Christmas. CHECK! I'm doing the last part of step #1 as a leader-ender right now.

Nice way to finish off 2009....stayed tuned for a final '09 post tomorrow evening!

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

2010 BOM - Let's get started early!

[[ All 2010 block files can now be found in one place: 2010 BOM folder ]]

So, it's not 2010 YET, but it's vacation for some of us and we need to use the time when we have it, right???

So---here's what's ramblin' in my mind...

A 2010 Mystery BOM; although each month there will be THREE blocks to choose from (for 10 months; through October). That will be 30 total blocks. For those of you wanting to make all three blocks each month, a final 5x6 layout could be made. Each block will measure 12", so some quick mental math....12x5=60; 12x6=72; add some sashing (2 inches?), and a border (4 inches?) we're talking....yeah...A BIG quilt. OR, another idea rambling in my mind: make all 30 blocks, but make them into TWO 3x5 layouts, OR, one as a 4x5 layout (20 blocks), then the other 10 blocks could be made into another 4x5 layout (after making 10 simple connector blocks).

OR you could just made TWO blocks each month, leading to a 4x5 layout; STILL a nice sized quilt...

I will stick with a background fabric and two coordinating colors (reds and blues for me). Blocks will be posted (hopefully) by the first of each month (give or take a day???). I already know once Vball rolls around in August, I'll have to be prepared ahead of time for September and October blocks! ;0)

November will be set aside for sashings, layouts, borders, etc. By December, this baby (or babies) should be finished for gifting or snuggling. A lovely Slllllooooowwwww project; no rush, only three blocks a month! Very do-able.

Blocks being used? Dunno! I have a few sites online that I will be looking at as well as some from my Grandmother's books. What I can say is that most of the blocks, if not all, will be traditional, simple and geometric. I do want to broaden my horizons and attempt some paper-piecing. Those directions will probably be directly from any site I find them from...

Okay, I think that's enough of the basics......ready to play???

2010 BOM – January
* EZ Angle Ruler (used in many 2010 BOMs)
(YES! It's worth the little $$ for this ruler to make half-square-triangles (HSTs)!!! However, if you don't have one, another method for HSTs is to cut a square 7/8" larger than the FINISHED size (2 7/8" for most of January's tutorials, except for the red of Block #1--that needs to be 4 7/8"). Draw a diagonal line from opposite corners of the squares, and v'iola! HST)
* Two Coordinating fabrics for each block (I will be using Reds and Blues)
* One background fabric for each block
If planning to use the same background fabric for each 2010 BOM, safely plan for 3½ - 4 yards.

Block #1 (Rocky Road to Dublin)
Background: 1 – 2½” strip
Red: 1 – 4½” strip
Blue: 1 – 2½” strip

Almost a cross between Dublin Steps & Jacob’s Ladder: (

Cutting directions scattered (SORRY), but can be found in BLUE print.

A. Cut a 16” strip from the Background and Blue strips. Strip-piece together, pressing towards blue.

Subcut into six 2½” x 4½” pieces.

Sew pieces together to create three 4-patch units (4½” x 4½” unfinished).

B. From remaining background strip, cut eight 2½” squares (set aside), and cut four half-square-triangles (HSTs) using the EZ Angle ruler.

C. From remaining blue strip, cut twelve HSTs using the EZ Angle ruler.
**Tip: Keep fabric folded wrong sides together when cutting the HSTs. This will make step (E) nicer.

D. Piece four blue and four background HSTs together on long sides, creating HST squares. Trim dog-ears.

Use the background squares and HST squares, sew to form a HST-4 patch block. Make two total units.

E. Sew a blue HST (short side) to a background square. Press towards blue. Piece another blue HST (short side) to adjacent side of the background square. Make four of these triangle units.

F. Cut four HSTs from the red strip.

G. Sew each triangle unit (E) to the long side of a red HST (F).

H. Sew units to form completed block.

Want another version? Here are Marcia Hohn's directions at Quilter's Cache-Quilt blocks galore. Rocky Road to Dublin-Quilter's Cache.

Block #2 (Four Square)
Background: 2 – 2½” strips
Red: 1 – 2½” strip
Blue: 1 – 2½” strip

A. Cutting:
Background fabric – ten 2 ½” squares & sixteen 2 ½” HSTs
Red fabric – eight 2 ½” squares & eight 2 ½” HSTs
Blue fabric – two 2 ½” squares & eight 2 ½” HSTs

B. Sew a Background HST to a Blue HST on long side. Repeat to create eight HST squares. Press away from background. Trim dog-ears.

C. Sew a Background HST to a Red HST on long side. Repeat to create eight HST squares. Press away from background. Trim dog-ears.

D. Sew into units A and B (2 each).


E. Layout units and sew pieces to make completed block.

Want another version? Here are Marcia Hohn's directions at Quilter's Cache-Quilt blocks galore. Four Square-Quilter's Cache. Take notice of the difference in color placement.

Block #3 (Four Square variation)
Background: 2 – 2½” strips
(or only 1 strip if using the left-over from Block #2)
Red: 1 – 2½” strip
Blue: 1 – 2½” strip

A. Cutting:
Background fabric – twelve 2½” squares & sixteen 2½” HSTs
Red fabric – six 2½” squares & eight 2½” HSTs
Blue fabric – two 2½” squares & eight 2½” HSTs

B. Sew a Background HST to a Blue HST on long side. Repeat to create eight HST squares. Press away from background. Trim dog-ears.

C. Sew a Background HST to a Red HST on long side. Repeat to create eight HST squares. Press away from background. Trim dog-ears.

D. Sew into Units A and B (2 each)



E. Layout units and sew pieces to make completed block.

Want another version? Here are Marcia Hohn's directions at Quilter's Cache-Quilt blocks galore. Four Square variation (Class Blue)-Quilter's Cache. Take notice of the difference in color placement.

Until next month, enjoy!!!

Quilting time returns...

For most of the day yesterday and Sunday evening (upon returning from parent's house), I have been enjoying my time downstairs with my Bernina. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh....

I have decided to put together a 2010 BOM, so I pieced up the first of those. More to come on that Thursday, so come back if you want a slow-moving project for the upcoming year leading to a finish by December 2010. Some sneaky-peek pics of January's BOM choices are at bottom of post. Very traditional, simple geometric blocks in reds and blues.

I then moved onto the Chunky Churndash. It had been just a wee bit too small, so I added two more rows, which meant I needed to piece together another 22 blocks. The top center is together with borders to come today. My mind had already started moving to the quilting of the quilt, and I knew I was running low on safety pins, so.....

Out came Christmas Lights. I spent the afternoon quilting the two sections, pieced them together and started cutting and sewing on the set of borders. At 8:00, the quilt made it to the stage pictured; today will bring on a FINISH (and I'll have some pins again to use on Chunky Churndash.

Happy Tuesday!

Sneaky-Peek of January BOM choices

Thursday, December 24, 2009

2009 ending soon---what's ahead for 2010?

It's Thursday morning, and I've been perusing many of your blogs, finding motivation for the FREE DAY AHEAD!!!! And maybe even TWO??? The snow is coming down like crazy; already a good 3 inches on the ground with another 9-15+ in the forecast for the remainder of the day through tomorrow. Our travel plans to Marshfield (2.5 hours south) MAY just be postponed until Sat. AM. The good news: This is the FIRST YEAR Santa is actually making a visit to the Skattebo household. Cassie is NINE, and will be her first C'mas at home! She's super excited. She said---"MOM! We HAVE to get the stockings out!" And my mind said "Poop---now I need to get some smaller stocking stuffers!" ;0) Good thing I took care of that last night before the snow started coming down. She also asked me to set up a cross-stitch hoop for her, so when this post is completed, I'm off to get her started.

This year isn't over yet, and I have BIG AMBITIONS to have at least two more completions (if not three???) before ringing in the new year.

BUT, looking ahead to 2010 already:....
Nancy (Patchwork Penguin) organized a "UFO Challenge" in 2009. A few of us signed up and did "okay"; I haven't double-checked, but I think I managed to polish off six??? So, NANCY---if you plan on doing this for 2010, SIGN ME UP!!!! If not----LET ME KNOW! I'll organize it for 2010!!!

A Pay It Forward campaign was floating around the online quilting world in 2009. My PIF'ers should be receiving their packages soon (they're in the mail). And my PIF gift will in the hands of Carol (Cornfield Quilter) soon (also in the mail). She is machine quilting my Perkiomen Daydreams. THANK GOODNESS! That thing is a monster at 100x100 and would have been a beast on a DSM!

So....2010??? I have an idea playing out in my head, but just haven't devoted time to really planning it out. I'm seeing 2010 being a year of a Mystery BOM (Block-of the-month). Two 12" blocks every month for 10 months (20 blocks leading to a 4x5 layout); the 11th month could be borders/sashing, and v'iola---a finish by December 2010. The blocks are coming from all over-- online, G'ma's old quilting books, many "traditional" blocks!!! My stash has lots of blue scraps, and maybe a red, white, blue quilt will be in the works? Anyway---stayed tuned if you're interested. Blocks (directions or links to the online block directions) will be posted on the side bar. Definitely a mystery since I don't know which blocks I'm planning yet, but I'm going to try to keep it to a background color, and two accents colors. I'm also going to challenge MYSELF to include at LEAST one paper-pieced block, because I'm not a paper-piecer. (I want to learn, though). My quilt will be scrappy to burn through a SMALL bit of my stash (the background will be solid white).

Anyway---enjoying my morning and getting excited to get downstairs to start my finishes :0)

Happy Thursday -- Merry Christmas Eve!!!

Safe travel to all of you on the road, in the air, or on the sea!!!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

It's almost here...

C'mas vacation, that is.

Some of you fellow teachers around the nation have already started rubbin' it in that you're on break----we have school through Wednesday yet.

I have only been putzing with some sewing a couple of hours here, a couple of hours there. I have really missed the obsession of needing to sew nearly 24/7...but soon! Soon! The time will return!

Two main quilt tops I've been working on simultaneously, toggling between each of them, acting as leaders-n-enders to each other.....

and Chunky Churndash (for my parents).

Chunky Churndash is going to have to take the front burner now, since it will be a C'mas gift to my parents; but thankfully we won't be celebrating with them for another couple of weeks. Therefore, I'll have all of break to work on it. (NOT that I'm going to----take all break, that is).

Actually, I have some ambitious goals set over my vacation...
1) Finish Chunky Churndash
2) Finish Lucidity
3) Finish Christmas Lights (it's been in "wait-mode" for a couple of months; all sandwiched and basted already, so once I really get motivated on it, it shouldn't take much more than a day...)
4) Start crackin' away on Bonnie's Carolina Christmas mystery. I needed a new leader-n-ender today as I neared the end of sewing Chunky Churndash rows, so I start strip sewing Step 1... (see below)

Christmas Lights awaiting quilting...

The start of Carolina Christmas... Colors chosen are greens, purples, white and black. I have yet to miss one of Bonnie's mysteries, so... time (SOON!) to start cracking away at it.

Christmas is right around the corner---holy buckets! Where has this year gone? The girls went to the library last Monday for the annual reading of "T'was the Night Before Christmas" by Santa.

Snow finally hit last week, too, so it actually feels like Christmas now.

Cass had her Winter Program Tuesday evening. DH drove on the way home and picked a fight with a big doe. Sadly, no one really won the fight; the car is sitting dead in the driveway (still), and the deer didn't fare too well either. However, we all walked away without a single scratch. We're still waiting to hear from the insurance company to see what the game-plan will be... until then, I've been bumming rides with DH and coworkers.

Finally, has your family turned into a "tech family?" Pictured: Cassie playing on her DS, Candace playing on the ipod touch, Me on the laptop, and Caitlyn on the other laptop. DH couldn't resist taking the pic when he saw this; it's not QUITE the norm, but pretty close....
(anyone recognize the book on the floor????) ;0)

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Saturday is here :0)

Coffee is on end-table, muffins in the oven...
Saturday is FINALLY here!
Goal: sew, sew, sew :0) I'll work some more on the Lucidity quilt, but may find it pushed to the side if I can't find the right colors in my stash to finish it up....
If I push it to the side, it's time to finally start Bonnie's mystery ???
Golly, then again, I still have the PIF gifts partially finished....yeah, yea. Yes, THAT is most definitely what I need to work on today.

Happy Saturday!