Saturday, June 30, 2012

Diamond Fields - almost King size

Blocks pieced and centered in some nested borders.  

Knowing it is still quite small for a king size, measuring only 75" x 75" right now, I tried it out on our king size bed.  It just covers the top, so my idea is finishing it off with a 10" border of the perfect purple fabric.  BUT, since I don't have that perfect purple fabric, this is as far as it will go today.  I will take a trip up to the quilt shop on Monday;  I haven't been up to see Deb in awhile.  Besides...I need to show off the "Bear Paw" quilt to her since all the fabrics came from her shop.  (Speaking of Bear Paw.......see it hiding under the Diamond Fields flimsy?  :D  Like I said....just keeping it safe and clean until it can be delivered to my parent's this week.)

I know I didn't really work with any purple scraps today, but this WHOLE quilt started with purple scraps, so.... it was a great way to spend the last day of June's Purple Rainbow Scrap challenge :) now what.....????

Next: Turning something King size

Julie is getting married!
A former student of mine, turned running partner and friend, is getting married on August 4.  I've known about this for half a year.... but it didn't hit me until this past week:  I should make a quilt for the wedding gift!!!

A text on Thursday started the conversation, and the input I have:  "We love earthy colors and we both like purple.  Oh, we have a King size bed, too."

!!!!!!!! LOL !!!!!!!!

Another king size.... in a month... do I have it in me??? :D

I enjoyed some time yesterday looking through all my quilt magazines, spying for a 'simple' King size pattern....

... and then it hit me:  I have a few quilt top centers in the works!  Maybe one of them will work.... just make it bigger.....

There's the "Buckeye Beauty" fall block swap from 2010.  The colors seem like they would work.

There's "Orca Bay" -- look: PURPLE!  But, it doesn't read 'wedding' to me.

Then I pulled out "Smith Mountain Morning" and really started contemplating quite seriously about it, despite that's it's blue and not purple.

And dawned on me!!!!!!!

I still have "Diamond Fields" on the design wall!!!  

Purple -- check.
Earthy colors (green and orange seem to fit) -- check.
King size -- ........

oh boy!  I have my work cut out for me.  BUT, today IS the last purple Saturday for Angela's Rainbow Scrap Challenge.  I'll have to see what magic I can work.

Chick update!
We have SEVEN.  One more egg wobbled in my hand yesterday, so we'll give it one more (maybe two more?) days........
Nicely done Lil' Mama!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Bear Paw - finished

Bear Paw (115" x 115")

The quilt so large that my space downstairs isn't adequate to photograph the finish.  Instead, I spread it out on our King size bed.  My parents have thicker mattresses, so this comforter should work nicely for them.  In fact...until my parents get their room painted, this lovely beauty may just remain out of harm's way and stay on our bed :D

1+ spool of Aurifil used (11 Bobbins and top-thread)
 Generic 7" feather pantograph by Cheryl Barnes' book Dot-to-Dot quilting

Extremely happy with the results.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Taming the beast: Bear Paw

I really wanted to show a "I'm FINISHED" picture tonight, but after almost a full day of quilting......
.....I'm done (physically).  

About 15 inches remain, which means I quilted 100 inches today; 115" wide.  I've gone through 9 bobbins so far and almost a full spool of Aurifil thread (see the almost bare spool on the top of my machine?)

Paul is cooking up a late dinner right now;  Sweet -n- Sour Pork, and the rest of us are relaxing with an hour of Olympic swimming trials.   I'm hungry.

We take a break from our normally scheduled quilting to bring you this message....

Paul:  {{standing in the doorway of our basement walk-out}}   "Hey honey, do you have the camera down here?"
Me:  {{just finishing my 3rd pass of quilting}}.  "No.  Why?"
Paul:  "I have this really cool salamander in the bucket of the tractor.  It has a deformed tail."
Me:  {{head upstairs to get camera}}

Paul is working on weeding the raspberry section;  LOOK!!!!  A few teasers are already out there :D

"And now back to our quilting session in progress."

PS:  Chick update:  The fifth has hatched!! :-)

Almost not quite....

The Bear Paw quilt has been loaded!  What a MONSTER!!!  Once the top was completed, it probably took me about two hours to piece the backing, the batting and get it all loaded and lined up on the frame.  This one has MAXED OUT my frame!

I literally only have half a centimeter left of space on the left side;  the carriage is flush against the frame here...

I have about an inch of space on the right side of the frame, BUT the pantograph pattern is non-exisitent for about an inch, so that'll be eye-balled up and lolligagged for the first bit for each path. game plan today:  QUILT THIS MONSTER!!!!!  I have 12 bobbins prepped and ready;  I wonder how many this will take???

Four have hatched with one more on the verge of emerging (lower right egg in picture) and one more with a little chip out of it;  so.....I predict to have SIX babies by the end of the day.  We'll just keep wondering and practice our patience with the other two....

Happy Thursday

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Mom's retirement quilt [quilting]

Mom's Retirement quilt

So, yesterday....while talking about the progress I have been making on my parent's Bear Paw quilt, my mother asked about her retirement quilt that she gave to me to finish up a couple of months ago....


I completely had let it slide right out of my mind!  She had handed it to me the weekend after Easter, and with all the school stuff flying around in my mind, I simply forgot about it!!! Honestly......CLEAR out of my mind!!!!!  In fact, I had Mom in a slight panic yesterday when I gave her a blank stare, saying I really didn't recall even taking it home from her house....

After 2 minutes of looking, however....I spied it....stashed downstairs ...... in the a bag.  

One of the Sunday School teachers pieced the quilt and did the embroidery...

all of the Sunday School kids and teachers signed in the white areas and added their thumb prints...

LOOK at these amazing mitered corners!!!!!!!!!

I loaded it up lickity-split after finishing "A Scrappy Picnic"; quilting completed yesterday evening;  binding just completed this morning.

It's not a technical finish of my own, but some more quilting completed :D

Some quilting for MIL

My mother-in-law handed over this little baby quilt to me a few weeks ago.  It is hand cross-stitched;  I believe either a sister of hers or a niece stitched it.  She wanted me to finish it with quilting, so I kept the quilting very simple, VERY.  Some 1/4" outlines around the "blocks", some echoing in the clouds around the Ark, and some swirls in the border.   The star of this quilt is definitely the hand-work of the cross-stitch.  Since I kept it for a bit longer than I had hoped, I trimmed it up and put the binding on right away for her.  

So, can I claim this as another finish?  :D

Happy Wednesday

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Scrappy Picnic - finished

A Scrappy Picnic (73" x 73")

I started with this grid-circuit style quilting, but soon tired of it......

so one row has some swirls....

some playing with stars and fillers....

some zigzaggy randomness....

and some loopy-loops.

I knew this quilt would be staying with me, so I figured I could play around with some quilting.  It's something that I never do!  I stay with my pantographs;  my comfort zone.....I never allow for "play and practice" time.  

I know practice makes perfect, but....... I think I'll be sticking with my pantographs. 


A new Baby!!!

Baby and Lil' Mama are doing fine. 

Under an hour ago, Lil' Mama hatched out the first baby;  there have been 8 eggs under her, so we'll see how she does.  It's so difficult to leave her be;  I just want to keep peeking under her!

And for those of you wondering about the "Xs" on the eggs.....  We needed to mark the eggs that were under her at the start.   There are a couple other quack-a-doodle chickens who favor the box she is laying in;  they squish her to the back and lay their eggs, so we wanted to have a way to determine between her "sitting" eggs and the other eggs.

A little math problem...

One pattern (posted by Alycia) 


One Moda "Flag Day" jelly roll


{{can I resist long enough to finish up some other projects??}}

Monday, June 25, 2012

Let's face facts, folks...

Anyone who visits our house right now will just have to accept that our garden is "cleaner" than our house.  'Nuf said!

My parents are visiting later today (after informing us last night at 8:30 PM), therefore the gameplan this morning was to tidy up the house.   Well........

..... I ended up in the garden for a wee bit longer than expected.  I only meant to water and feed (Miracle Grow) the beans and tomatoes, but since I was out there, I ended up weeding and cultivating around the plants at the same time.  

Lower "left" main garden:  raspberries, strawberries, peppers, garlic, basil, onions, potatoes

Lower "middle" main garden: potatoes, beans, cucumbers, peas

Lower "right" main garden:  tomatoes, lettuce, kalorabi (sp?), broccoli, cabbage, parsley, dill, carrots

My assistant :D  (I'm sure he'd argue that I'm HIS assistant).
Therefore......My "partner" may be a better name for him :)

Upper front garden space:  beans, carrots, cilantro, asparagus, chives, garlic, some raspberries that didn't get transplanted

Here are four of my "rescued" tomatoes!  

Upper back garden space:  corn and 8 more rescued tomato plants.

An update on lil' Mama:  no babies yet.  One nice PRO about keeping a blog;  it's a great timeline too.  The first picture I had about lil' Mama was dated 6/8/12, and we think that was a few days after she started sitting...... we're thinking any day now :D

Back to some laundry and maybe even some quilting.  Housework, schmousework!  My parents will understand :)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

A Sunday on the water

Some fishing...

Some relaxing...

Some local wildlife...

a family of loons...

and a Kindle Book.


How was YOUR Sunday?

Free Kindle Book

I'm not necessarily jumping on the "Free Kindle book - Book Review" bandwagon, but I thought I'd share this one.  After reading the customer reviews, it seems like it follows that lovely classic romance formula:  "girl needs a boy, girl tries to change and pass off a boy as someone different, girl falls for boy."

Faking Mr. Right

 June 19, 2012
The Perfect Man…For Her?

Who is the perfect man? Ad executive Melissa Brock might not know the answer, but she does know it’s not Sam Curtis. But with time running out and no flawless male specimen in sight, Mel has no choice but to try and pass off the former soldier as the real thing for her next campaign. Her business partner claims Mel only needs to “smooth out Sam’s rough edges,” a comment that has her reaching for a sand blaster. Confident, irrepressible, and sexy as hell, Sam has an unerring talent for finding trouble and more appeal than any man has a right to possess. Against her better judgment, she finds herself falling under his spell. But Mel has to wonder: is she falling for her own Mr. Right, or under the hype of her own campaign?

Customer Reviews:  
1)  Typos were my only negative complaint. Some words did not change into the format cleanly and so the reader got to play guessing games with the intent. (Ex. that 'was' must have been a 'what' for the sentence to make any sense at all.)

Otherwise, wonderful characters placed in believable situations, with witty or snarky or delightful things to say. Laughing out loud does occur. Reader should be warned to not drink soda or milk while reading.
2) This stry had me cracking up constantly. The dynamic betwee the characters was fantastic. Loved the banter between Mel and Sam, it was hilarious especially pertaining to her pig looking dog. Incredible ending. Great story!!!
3) I REALLY enjoyed this book. I can imagine it being made into a really great romantic comedy movie. The characters were adorable and the writing was wonderful and SO funny.

I haven't been to the Free Kindle Book list in awhile!  This is only ONE of the 21 books I downloaded this morning. YIKES!!!! I guess we need to get out on the boat one of these days so that I can sit back and start reading.

After arriving home at 11:30 PM last night (WAY past my bedtime), we all have had a late start this morning.  The day is starting out overcast, but I think we will be making our way either to the beach or out on the boat.  The girls have been helping out quite a bit in the garden, too, so they are deserving of a sun-n-water day.

Happy Sunday

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Bear Paw flimsy (almost)

Holy Big-Quilt Batman !
The quilt has almost reached flimsy status.  One more 6" border of the carmel colored fabric remains.

At this point, before the final border..... it measures 103" x 103"; do you see it extend beyond the carpet at the top of the pic???

Before deciding on the size of the final border, I measured the width of my quilting frame:  130", so I should be perfectly fine with a 115"x115" quilt for quilting.

But yikers!  BY FAR the biggest quilt to be placed on the frame.