Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Halloween candy & XStitch

Another month is almost history! I can't keep up.

Projects seem to be moving in slooooooooow motion here lately. The x stitch project is done, though, and this is what it will look like in its frame. I just positioned it in there for the effect. I have several designs waiting for framing and that's a good thing.

I love quilting cross stitch in frame

Today I finally bought the 'official' Halloween candy. We average about four trick or treaters each year so having a large bowl of candy ready for the doorbell ringers is not a necessity here. Besides, if it's bought too early, I eat it. One year, I even bought candies I didn't like thinking the temptation would be gone. Didn't work and I was stuck eating candy I didn't like.

Kari sent pictures of their Halloween adventures the past few days. You can see some of them on her blog. Each year the whole family carves pumpkins and they all dress up.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Quilt Show & Other Stuff

church pews with quilts over the backs
another view of the church pews and quilts
My sister, Connie and I took a road trip up north last Saturday to a quilt show in Harrisville. With the sun shining most of the day, the trees displayed a marvelous mix of color with their golds, reds and greens. The show was to benefit the local library and was held in seven locations around town. Five of them were churches where wonderful quilts decorated the pews in addition to other areas. One church served a delicious homemade soups and breads luncheon, while another church served cider and sweet breads. You can can a feel for the show in these two pictures that Connie took. We heard the attendance was very good at all locations.

There's a wonderful tutorial for a fast and easy charity quilt on Nancy's blog.

I Love Quilting cross stitch project in a hoop
I've been working on a little cross stitch and cutting some squares for charity quilts. The outer borders to the wedding quilt are still waiting to be stitched to the center squares and I'm always sorting my sewing area/s. Jim says I'm spreading my things into the kitchen now. (Only in an emergency)

That sweet Kim at Kim's Cozy Quilts sent me another fun mail package today. I think she said her DH thought I should have this. Well, of course, I was thrilled when I opened it. Kim wrapped the bottle of Detroit Tigers Hot Sauce in another color of her beautiful hand dyed fabric. Perhaps if the Tigers had used this sauce during the final two weeks of the season, I'd be watching them tonight in game one of the World Series.
Detroit Tigers Hot Sauce bottle

Thought for the day: "Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see." - Mark Twain

Friday, October 19, 2007

Wednesday evening was guild night with our speaker being Cathy Kappius from northern Michigan. She brought three large suitcases full of quilts (which is always nice). You can see pictures of Cathy and the quilts she brought at our guild website. Cathy talked about color and being adventurous with our fabric choices for quilts. She believes there are no ugly fabrics, they just need to pair up with the correct fabric. The best tip I heard from Cathy was about magazine pages. She saves pages from any magazine that evokes a certain feeling in her or has unusual color combinations. These pages later inspire her when she is deciding on fabrics and colors.

While you're at our website, please take a look at the gorgeous raffle quilt for next spring. Isn't is a beauty?

three pillowcases made from WMU fabric
I made three Western Michigan University pillowcases this week for my son, JJ and two of his friends. Pillowcases are a great way to use that special fabric you have to buy, but then don't know what to make with it. This fabric has the Bronco, WMU seal and the word Broncos on it.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Tablerunner, more cat pics & hangman game

Table runner on the kitchen table
This table runner was a mystery project made at a quilt camp at least three years ago. It took place in October. I remember the leaves were the glorious colors of autumn and fell softly to the ground carpeting the area while we stitched inside. We had our very own gourmet cook who filled our plates with the most delicious food. Each dinner had a theme, also, with the table decorated accordingly. The girls took a picture of me the last day there trying to button the jeans that I wore on the first day. There was a considerable gap between the button and the buttonhole proving that I was well-fed during my stay. The runner was finally machine quilted and bound yesterday. The colors in the picture aren't really true, but I am happy with the results. In the background you can see parts of the ironing board that I set up last night in order to press some backings. Jasper heard it and as soon as the iron and fabric were off, he was on.

Speaking of Jasper again, (and I hope you aren't tired of him) last night he was into chasing bugs. It didn't matter that he needed to climb up the curtain to have a chance at capturing his prey. Now Annie told me she is feeling deprived that Jasper gets so much time in my blog. Here is a picture of her 'helping' Jim sort some boxes of old lps he purchased at an estate sale, while Jasper circles the area.

Jasper climbing up the curtain on the livingroom door

Annie sitting in the empty box by Dad

If you aren't already spending way too much time on the computer, here's a Halloween Hangman game for those nights when you just can't get to sleep. You have those, too, I'm guessing. If apples are on your mind, you might try to catch some with this game.

Friday, October 12, 2007

New Quilt Shop, UGRR & Prizes

Inside The Quilted Cottage Quilt Shop

What is more fun than having a new quilt shop open in town? Being able to shop there! We've been without a shop in my city for awhile until this week when The Quilted Cottage opened its doors. The owners are so energetic. My friend, Jane and I stopped on our way home from sewing for the UGRR. We were both very pleased with the friendly atmosphere, lovely decor and attention to detail displayed throughout the shop. We were able to choose a free fat quarter, view a quilt show in the classroom, sign up for clubs and draw for a percentage discount. There was also a table devoted to Breast Cancer Awareness with pamphlets and pink roses. This will be a great hangout.
Folded flannel quilt now finished
Speaking of the UGRR, I did make my self imposed deadline for finishing the flannel quilt. It's pictured folded and waiting to be packed. There were five of us sewing yesterday and we managed to finish quite a few quilts. I brought home two tops that were sewn and birthed (but not tied) to finish before the meeting next week. This afternoon I spread one of them on the kitchen table and "here comes Jasper!" As soon as he saw the camera, he started posing.

Jasper stretched out on quilt
Jasper posing on quilt

Barb Johnston on the Heartstrings group posted this Christmas recipe from the book, Cookies to Share - Jane Quinn's Quilting in the Country. It's a good one that you might want to share with a friend.

Quilter's Christmas Sugar Cookies

In the dairy section of your supermarket you:
Buy a can of Pillsbury Holiday cookie dough
Slice and decorate. Bake as directed on the package.

And last, but certainly not least, two prizes from my recent blog wins arrived today. The cute embroidered tote bag and recipe file are from Bren at Pieces from Me and the lovely pail full of batik fat quarters is from Alice at The Quilted Giraffe. It was another great mail day and I thank you both for being so generous in offering these gifts.
tote bag, recipe box and can full of batik fat quarters of fabric

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Ode to Morning Glories

purple morning glories by the fence in the backyard
Since the weather is so summer-like lately, some of the flowers have seen a resurgence in blooming. My morning glories are almost prettier now than they were during the summer. I had to take October pictures of them to remember next year. I planted daffodil and tulip bulbs today and also moved some mums and ground cover plants.

Want to win a cute pair of pumpkin potholders? Click on over to Kathy's blog to find out the information.

I couldn't make this up. Another blog draw win for me! That makes four more prizes to watch for in the mail in the coming days. Toni (Quilting Pirate) emailed that I had won a bag of fabric scraps. I'm all smiles.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Car Keys & Another Win

view of color from the expressway
clump of trees with fall color
It took almost a week of looking, but finally last night I found my car keys! Someone
put a large pile of folded laundry on top of them on my dresser and left it there for several days. I know I checked that area more than once, but not good enough, I guess.

Kim from A Peach in Stitches just emailed that I won the book she was offering on her blog. I have been winning things all over blogland! So besides viewing all of the wonderful projects everyone posts about, it sure pays to read and comment.

It was like the middle of summer here today instead of fall. Jim and I decided to take a ride up north with the a/c in the car cranked up to high. We were looking for color. The first two pictures were taken through the dirty window of the car going 70 miles an hour, so they could have been better. We stopped in Grayling just in time to see the train which was the inspiration for the one used in the Polar Express movie arrive in town with a load of passengers.
train that inspired the Polar Express
Icehouse Quilt Shop
Fortunately, the train tracks run right behind The Icehouse Quilt Shop which happened to be open. I bought a couple of charm packs and the yo yo maker for hearts.

Tomorrow is Plan Bee with Connie, Jane and Mary at Mary's house and I always look forward to our monthly get-togethers. I'm not sure if I mentioned in an earlier post, but we chose the name Plan Bee because Plan A never works for us.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Flannel Quilt & Fun Mail

blue and tan flannel quilt
magazine, Detroit Tigers lapel pin and green fabric

I was able to pin baste a little flannel quilt today for the UGRR. We meet next Thursday, so there's a deadline if I want to turn it in that day. I have several tops I'd like to finish before Thursday, but I don't want to get too carried away.

More fun mail for me! The stitchery magazine that Christine so kindly offered to send me arrived. I've had fun paging through it and wondering which project to do first. Halloween fat quarters are on their way to Christine. I hope they make you smile. The other package was a surprise that Kim had told me to watch for from her visit to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. I opened the little box to find a cute Detroit Tigers lapel pin wrapped in some lovely green fabric which is much better than tissue paper, IMHO. That was such a nice surprise. Thank you for thinking of me.

My car keys have been missing since we got back from Chicago. If anyone sees them, please let me know. Now it's time to do some blog reading.

Thursday, October 4, 2007


Jan has tagged me and now I get to use my name for the word game that accompanies it. Thank you, Jan.

J - jumbled So many thoughts and projects mixed in my mind at one time.

E - eager I'm always ready to learn something new

A - ambidextrous I can do many tasks with both hands.

N - nocturnal I like to stay up late and sleep in.

N - nostalgic the older I get, the more sentimental I become.

E - eclectic I have wide-ranging interests from theatre and sports to Josh Groban and Nickleback.

You Make Me Smile Award

My family suggested many other adjectives, which I promptly rejected. I read so many blogs that make me smile, so if you'd like to play along, please do.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Tote bag, Tutorial Link and Pumpkin Man

Tote bag from Corry, side one
tote bag, side 2

Two days home since the week-end getaway, and still nothing much accomplished but a couple loads of laundry and a little grocery shopping. Hopefully tomorrow will be a sewing day.

A suprise in the mail from Corry (Dutch Blue). She sent me one of her clever, makeover tote bags. You can never have too many tote bags. I had asked about her moo cards and she offered to send me some. The tote bag was an added bonus. She also made the cutest little card. Corry shows her tote technique here.

With permission from Jane Monk of Tasmania, I wanted to share the tutorial she has on her blog about perfect placement of applique pieces for the Dear Jane blocks. I know there are several of you working on your blocks now so I thought you might find this link helpful.

Jasper and Mr. Pumpkin sitting in my chair
Several years ago, my cousin, Mary, made me this Mr. Pumpkin Man. I sat him on the chair in order to snap a picture for the blog when you know who decided HE wanted to sit there. Jasper is now snuggling Mr. Pumpkin Man.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Week-end in Chicago

Chicago view with Sear Tower
Downtown Chicago, Clock tower and Wrigley Building
It turned out that the ballgame wasn't going to matter in the standings like we had hoped, but ten family members headed to Chicago to watch our beloved Detroit Tigers play the Chicago White Sox at US Cellular Field. We didn't even win the game, but we had a wonderful time. There are always lots of Tiger fans at away games. It's fun to pass each other on the sidewalks and share a 'Go Tigers' with them. After the game we made our way to Billy Goat Tavern where we enjoyed a few drinks and the famous cheesborgers. The weather was simply beautiful - couldn't have asked for better weather. Time was limited to do other things, but four of us did take a tour around town to see what was new. Millennium Park wasn't there the last time I visited. Chicago is one of my favorite places and I look forward to the next trip.

Celluar Field tron with Tigers and Sox on it
Sign outside Billy Goat Tavern, Butt in Anytime

We stopped in St. Joseph on the drive Friday so my sister could see the lighthouse there. It was a long walk out to the lighthouse where we discovered that beyond the first one was a second lighthouse. The concrete breakwater wasn't there years ago, so the watchman had to navigate the ladder-like structure over the water to get to the lighthouse. I can't imagine!
breakwater leading to the lighthouse
second lighthouse