Monday, December 31, 2007

And the winner is...

Annie & Jasper are checking the basket full of paper slips with names for the drawing
My crack legal team Annie & Jasper verified that all of the names were properly entered into the basket for my 100TH BLOG POST GIVEAWAY. Thank you to everyone for being so patient waiting until the end of the year for the drawing. Holding the basket over his head, Jim then reached into it and pulled out one of the slips of paper. The winner is Darlene from Quilting Daze! Annie double checked the name for accuracy. Congratulations, Darlene! Please send me your snail mail address and I'll get the kit out to you on Wednesday, weather permitting.
Jim's hand with the winning name and Annie is reading it

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Stash Busting Report & Wisconsin Snow

kit of fabrics and pattern for making a basket wallhainging in pinks and browns
First let me report another week of no fabric added to my stash. While visiting our DD and family in Wisconsin, Kari, Abby and I went to Royce's, the local quilt shop. Oh, it was so difficult not to pick up those rolls or FQs of repro fabrics that greeted me right inside the front door. Such temptations! Instead I chose a kit for a small basket quilt in pinks and browns that I would have loved to own and bought it as my 100th Blog Post Giveaway. The drawing will be tomorrow. My urge to buy the kit was satisfied, yet nothing will join my stash. I hope the new owner will love it as much as I do.

We celebrated Christmas with Kari, Craig, Abby and Ian in Wisconsin after Christmas. The trip there seemed to take forever as we encountered a few slowdowns in traffic. Kari had made lots of cookies to share with us. The house was all decorated for the holidays and I think Abby and Ian had grown since we saw them in November.

On Friday, the sky emptied more snow onto West Bend. I watched all day and the snow continued to fall. My grandchildren are Wisconsin born so they love the snow. Grandpa joined them outside to work on their fort. Someone needed to stay inside to take pictures from the doorway. Jim showed me how to play with the buttons on the camera and you can see the different looks I got of the outdoor shots. Luckily, the roads were clear and dry on our drive home. Once we reached the Illinois border, the snow amounts were noticably less than in Wisconsin.
Jim, Abby and Ian working on the fort in the backyard
snow view from Kari's back door
another view of the snow from Kari's backdoor

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas & Stash Busting Report 3

angel announcing and you shall call His name Jesus
Merry Christmas to all my family and friends both in and out of Blogland. It came sooner this year than ever before. Is that possible? May you feel God's love as you celebrate the gift of His Son!

I forgot again to report Sunday on my stash busting, but last week no fabric entered my house. I did make one pillowcase and two potholders from my stash and wrapped the potholders in a FQ of my fabric. So I did make some progress! The pillowcase was made from Raggedy Ann & Andy fabric, but I didn't take a picture. For the potholders, I used the double handled basket pattern from Jo Morton's book "Vintage Charm" and added a border.

double handled potholders in brown and tan colors

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Christmas Quilt

me holding my new red and green Christmas quilt
I've won lots of things in my life, but never a quilt. It was quite a shock when Cheryl from Polka Dots and Rick Rack emailed me to say my name had been drawn as the winner of her quilt giveaway. Today, it arrived and it's just beautiful! Cheryl did wonderful work making this one and I am more than happy to give it a new home. It was so thoughtful and generous of Cheryl to do this. I will take good care of it and think of you every time I look at my quilt. Thank you again.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Snow & Stash Busting Report

snow drifts on the deck
snow drifts in the driveway area
We received about 8 inches of snow and the winds produced some good drifts. Here's a couple of pictures of our driveway area and deck. Jim cleared most of the driveway this afternoon after the winds died down. Tonight he found the deck. Although this is a lot of snow for this time of year nowadays, I remember storms that made walls of snow on either side of the driveway when the tractor cleared a path. The schools are all closed for tomorrow. Can you hear all of the children in the area yelling with excitement?

I'm not sure if I gained any ground again this week with my stash busting. Does the fabric bought for The Clothesline Club projects count against me? I cut and stitched 80 nine patches for Step 3 of Bonnie's mystery, I made a string block to send to Mary in MN, three teddy bears for my sewing buddies, and a pillowcase all from my stash. However, I did buy the current kit plus an extra yard of fabric for TCC projects.

Clothesline Club & Mystery Step 3

my tea cozy made with fabric from the 30s
This past Thursday was the second meeting of The Clothesline Club at The Quilted Cottage quilt shop. Since our club started later than most, we are combining two months into one until we catch up. Stacy showed us two cute four patch doll quilts done in different colorways. She also had the cutest little fabric dog to match one of the quilts. The kit for this month was for placemats with scalloped edges. I hope I do them justice. It will be good practice for the scallops on my Dear Jane quilt. The tea cozy pictured I made from last month's kit last. Someone didn't read the directions when applying the bottom binding. Instead of folding the curved binding to one side, I should have smushed it down. (That's a technical term) I haven't decided if I will redo that part.

Eighty reds and creams nine patch blocks for the mystery quilt
Step 3 of Bonnie's Carolina Crossroads Mystery is now done. I will post a picture tomorrow after they are pressed. Does anyone else feel like they are back in school and the teacher is giving us 'good' homework?

A huge storm is predicted while we sleep tonight. So far, we keep missing the storms, but the forecasters promise this one is for real. Lots of snow should greet us tomorrow morning. Sounds like another good day for sewing!

Post Addition:
I couldn't wait until morning to see the piles of nine patches from Step 3. I love them! This time I needed to make 80 blocks.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

100th Post, Bee Gifts & Stash Busting Report

My 100th post! I had plans to have something special to share for a giveaway, but no such luck. So, if you are willing to wait until January for a surprise, leave a comment and I'll draw a name or two on New Year's Eve.
Gifts from Plan Bee
three teddy bears
Yesterday was Bee day at Connie's house. We did a bit of sewing, a bit of chatting, a
bit of eating and then exchanged gifts. Connie gave us the cute bee bag to carry our sewing necessities to future Bee get-togethers. It was filled with chocolates, also. Mary made each of us four beautiful cards. Mary is equally talented in quilting and scrapbooking. These are almost too pretty to use. The cards were wrapped in the cute button fabric that is under all the other items. Jane found this cute sewing machine tin with a beaded handle for us. She knows we are tin nuts. There was also a round peppermint which I luckily discovered was soap. At first, I thought it was a BIG candy. I made the girls each a little quilting bear shown in the second photo. I used this pattern when I did craft bazaars years ago. I noticed my fingers did not work as quickly or nimbly as they did twenty some years ago. We had a fun afternoon, as always.

My stash busting report for last week - I cut and sewed 100 rail blocks and 100 nine patches from fabrics in my stash. However, I did receive a package of Chuck Nohara shirtings that I had ordered back in early October. I guess it was a wash.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Mystery Nine Patches

I wasn't going to spend most of the day making nine patches for Bonnie's mystery quilt...I just couldn't stop myself. And if I didn't finish them today, the stack of fabrics would have stayed out and the mess I created wouldn't have been cleaned. So now I am done with Step 2 and can get back to my other projects until next week. I took another picture of the rails and have also added one of the niners. These blocks finish at 3" which is just the size I like. There are 100 rails and 100 nine patches. I wonder how they will fit into the pattern? It sure is fun to see the colors and fabrics that others have chosen for this quilt.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Bonnie's mystery quilt

One hundred red and green rail fence blocks
I need another project like a hole in the head, but Bonnie Hunter from Quiltville is offering a free mystery titled Carolina Crossroads! Who could resist? Bonnie makes the most gorgeous scrap quilts and has always been generous sharing her patterns. She has set up a separate Yahoo list for people doing this mystery. Over 600 quilters subscribed in less than two days! The first step involved cutting 1 1/2" strips, sewing three of them together, and sub-cutting into 3 1/2" units. One hundred rail units are needed. I finished mine today. Actually, I cut, stitched, pressed and sub-cut all this afternoon. This step doesn't take much time. What did take forever was choosing the colors! After picking several combinations, I finally just had to select one group. So reds it is with green accents and light tans for the light. This picture isn't very good so I'll try to get a better one during the daylight hours tomorrow.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Fantastic Friday Sew-In & Stash Reduction

classroom at The Quilted Cottage on Fantastic Friday night
Churn Dash pattern next to finished 3 1/2 inch churn dash quilt blocks
Another 'Fantastic Friday' night spent at The Quilted Cottage. Everyone gets their own six foot table on which to sew that includes an attached cup holder and waste basket. Our dinner was salad, loaded baked potato and banana cream pie for dessert. Every hour a name is drawn for a door prize. (Connie was a lucky winner) All that plus the social benefits of sewing with nineteen other quilters and the beautiful surroundings in which we sew for $10.00. Several guild members from Piecemakers were in attendance this time which was fun. Connie and I made more progress with our little 3 1/2 inch churn dash blocks and met a few new quilters. The churn dashes have been a retreat project only and were purchased as a kit in Paducah, KY. a couple of years ago. We are almost done with the needed 132 blocks. We're signed up for more FF and are on the waiting list for the next one which is a pajama Christmas party. Doesn't that sound like fun?

Quilt book and gift tag pattern
I didn't purchase any fabric, but couldn't resist this new book and pattern. My friend, Karen, had this book in Shipshewana and I liked the projects that it contained. The pattern for the tags will hopefully be used for Christmas this year, but no promises. This week I put thirteen yards of fabric into bags for donation. There's plenty more to go through this week. Thanks to Judy for the challenge.

My SSCS gift was packaged and mailed on November 28th. I hope it has safe travel and arrives soon for its recipient.