Sometimes, it's so far down, everything looks like up. I'm not "down" in the spirit sense...but so far from the "starting line" I can't even see it from here. It's that old saying, "the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak", or something like that.
Needless to say, no sewing has happened as yet. Friend Betsy has done her best to stir me into action, but, no luck.
The days are growing longer, new snow is being delivered with regularity, followed by equally rapid thaw and melt. We are an icy mess after last weekends blizzard. This week we warmed up to the 30's, drip, drip, drip. Another storm is arriving tomorrow, led by rain and then freezing rain! Just what we want and need...not!!
Today I worked my way through the dishes, cleaned the bathroom, had a late breakfast with friend Jean, and then sorted and purged stuff from multiple boxes. Sorted by 'pitch, donate or keep'. The Keep stuff has been distributed to its destinations. The pitch stuff is in the trash, and the donate is bagged up to pass along.
We have a little "Thrift and Gift" shop a couple of doors down from my front door, doing business out of the old TV and Cable store. As odd as that sounds in a tiny village of just over 700, its doing a very good business. Her prices are very reasonable, all the thrift stuff is donated to her for selling, and the Gifts part includes a jewelery line by a local gal, Leanin' Tree greeting cards and the helium type balloons for parties. You can find anything from a wine glass to an ironing board there.
A couple of weeks ago Jean scored a brand new, with tags, never used bright red electric Wok! For $3.50!! It is super convenient to be able to donate anything you wish to upcycle . It's a wonderful service to the community as a whole, especially in this economy.Another plus is that this new shop has a donation bin for food shelf items, and the food bank(which is also quite new in my village, is about 3 doors down from Thrift and Gift.
Sorry about no pictures, Blogger isn't loving me today *VBS* Be back soon or sooner, hopefully!
but I'm going to give it another go! Finally I can access blogger, altho not every day, and I got a picture to upload!
I did follow through with my intention of 01/04 and choose the HA quilt top and the Happy Frogs as my "jumping in again" projects. And I even got backings picked out and partly made...and then I wandered off.
None of many Christmas pillowcases got made for the grandkids. I had other stuff for them, as well, but do like to give them a new flannel pillowcase every year or so. This was an "or so" year, since I missed last year. And I've got a whole new stack of Christmas flannels in fun kid prints to have used. So I'm going to make them anyway and see if I can get them shipped out before the cold and snow vanishes. Wish me luck, or join me...I'd love the company *VBS*
Well...apparently we begin WITHOUT pictures this morning! Several attempts and no results...thanks Blogger!
Guess that gives me more time to THINK about what quilt top comes first, AFTER I do a 'search and re-claim' mission in my sewing room. Did I mention that 3 or 4 months worth of stuff has been piled in there? Boxes to sort, stacks of stuff to put away, and then the just general "ditch" items prior to our Christmas gathering, LOL.
Yes, it will take some time I think. I am pretty sure that I can clear a path to the sewing machine itself in short order, 15 minutes max! BUT the rest will take more time and effort.
I'm thinking about a backing for the Orphan block top, 2 or 3 posts before this one. The one with the big HA letters in it...that one should be fun! OR maybe the Happy Frogs , for a 'not quite so well right now' grandson, who's 5. I think that might tickle him *VBS*
Some goal setting is also in order, so here goes...I'm thinking I can get two UFOs finished up and out of here in January. One of the afore mentioned, and probably an older flimsey. I have some "things" that need mailing to blogging friends, and I'm hoping I can get that done also.
A few more boxes unpacked and a bit more clutter out of here.
Now I'll tell you one more thing you don't know about me, LOL....I absolutely LOVE molasses cookies, big soft ones with a sprinkle of sugar on the top...an oldie but goodie! I'll be back with pictures I hope.
P.S. The camera batteries are charging!
It's been "a long, long road, a-winding to the land of my dreams"...yes indeed, I've been almost totally missing, haven't I? But like a bad penny, I keep popping back up when you least expect it.
I'm happy to be done with 2012, but not for any particular reason. I suppose it was mostly a year of 'adjustments' for me, and of coming to a place of acceptance and comfort in a new reality. I did alot of sewing during the early months of '12, but less and less as the year went on. I informed friend Betsy this morning that only managed to accomplish ONE bound quilt for the entire year. I have many sets of blocks completed and ready to join up. And several new tops on hangers...but it ended there.
Time to get on to the final steps and get those quilts to some people who can and will enjoy using them. I'm going to try and stage a "comeback" right here in my little corner of WI! And in the words of my favorite Star Trek captain, "Make it so"! Please feel free to join me :- )
and lay them straight! I've buttoned my shoes, closed the door, made the frogs happy and I'm movin' on...
This conglomeration of "stuff", arrived at my house in the form of a bag of 2" strips, mostly Aunt Gracies knock-offs, and a left over pile of blue/white 2.5" checks. I think there were roughly 30 of the squares. Of very little consequence when paired with another color and turned into 4 patches. So I put on my thinking cap...
and now there are 30 10.5" blocks. This should be what can only be called "an interesting" quilt! I didn't square up the little centers..many tilt one way or another. I didn't stay consistant with the first strip going out, but drew from the bag of 2" donated strips, my own 2.5" and also from 3.5". Let me say it does get very interesting to arrive at a chosen block size, LOL.
And here's the prize for you if you know all the words to the rhyme that began this post...just kidding. What I'd like to know is "If I laid the 5 fabrics used in this block on you sewing machine, would they "work" together for you?" Each of the 4 blocks below have 5 printed fabrics in them.
they may read as a solid, but few solids were used to create this top. The ugly brownish background is my kitchen carpeting..oh yes, joy of joys, good old low nape brown industrial type carpet in the kitchen! And for the record, I really, really like block #4 *VBS*
well, I certainly hope so! The 12 little frog orphans have found a new purpose and a new place to belong. I'm very pleased with how well the 12 frog blocks worked with the scrappy 16 patches. And when I found the green with green dots in my stash, I knew it was my border fabric! The top is now 46" X 46" and will be donated at that size. I'm still debating if I want to finish it into a quilt, or send it as a top. One thing I'm positive about, however, is I have ONE more empty container in my sewing room...yippee!
Having gotten the Frog top together, I moved on to the next container, which has been housing these scrappy fence rail blocks. So far I've gotten 6 rows joined to each other, and have several more to go.
While thrifting last week, with Jean, I came across a sale on VHS tapes at my favorite thift store. They had them 5/$1 and since I have a VCR in my sewing room, I've hung onto my videos. I was thrilled to find "Ghostbusters", that crazy long ago movie with Bill Murray. Also found "Sarah, Plain and Tall" as well as "The Christmas Story". They all work find, and I'm ticked pink about that. The "Shrek 2" had more tracking problems than I care to watch, so I pitched that one. "The Jungle Book" was also a good tape, and I've been watching them as I sew. At my age, and here in rural WI, doesn't take the newest or best to make me happy *VBS*
This top, pieced during the 2011 Rainbow Scraps Challenge, has waited for me to get around to it. It still hasn't gotten it's final pressing, and I've not decided on borders or not borders. I'll re-measure it for sure, and may include it with other tops I am donating. Not being a fan of pink makes my decision easier. Have a lovely weekend all!
and many, many of you make and donate quilt, quilt tops, batting,fabric, etc to the mulitude of 'needs' across the world. Quilts for Japan, quilts for prison ministries, quilts for soldiers... and on and on. I'm proud and happy to be part of that particular "collective good". A while back these cute medical frogs came to me as orphan blocks. Wish I could remember who sent them...I'm thinking Julie, of Quilting in the Barn, don't know for sure. They were 6" blocks, just frogs and red, and they numbered 12. Hmmmm? what to do with them?
Recently I added the 2" muslin strips, bringing them up to 8.5" but still no clue as how to use them?? And then last night, laying in bed, staring up at the ceiling fan....a brain storm hit!!
Over the first 6 months or so of this year, I've been sewing random 2.5" strips in 16 patches...dozens and dozens of 16 patches. The variety crosses a wide portion of my stash, my scraps and donated stuff. And as Fate would have it, they just happen to be 8.5"....can you guess what comes next?? Stay tuned for the next chapter.
and things are blooming and growing all around me. Despite the slightly weird weather patterns, WI is still green and growing. It sounds like we may be among the "lucky" ones. So much destructive weather and fires all across our great nation. We have these lovely lilies blooming right next to our raspberry bushes..lots of yum-yum! The garden is doing well and we have been eating broccoli, spinach and chard.
This red, white and blue(mostly)orphan block quilt is the one I have been working on(since June). I'm closer to done than this picture indicates but I didn't stop to take a new picture. In limiting my orphans to the r,w,& b color scheme, I limited what I had to work with..it's taken longer than usual.
This is my effort of the past week(plus). It's been done over the course of a year(or so) and is has less harmony than I usually strive for. It is a "separate-ness" or blocky feeling. One way to avoid that is to have ALL the blocks you are going to use and work with a design wall. Mostly I strive to "build" a row or a section of the same height. This one is currently 52" X 72". It looks like it needs a border to me, but it's not going to get one because my roll of batting is 54" wide...and that's that!
The work of many of my blogging friends are in this one, some of my orphans, and the big cheddar H.A. was donated by friend Betsy. After reading the WI quilts book, she made a whole H.A. quilt....her youngest daughter loved it!
...goin' back to where I've already been, and I'm telling you ... I'm on the road again. I have a new occupation, as if retirement didn't keep me busy enough, LOL. Ya right!
I'm off today to begin a week of house sitting for a friend of many years. It's not something I thought about doing, but they asked if I would stay at their house while they fly hither and yon all over the country. And I said "yes". The property is rural , and off the beaten track, which is lovely for bird watching and quiet solitude. I see lots of reading coming up soon, and prepared by getting 5 books from the library . I also have GRAND and glorious plans for getting some tops basted, and borders added to others. She has a lovely, large dining room table where you can lay things out...WITHOUT cat hair everywhere!
I will be popping back into town periodically this next week to check on Ebony and her litter box. Jean will pitch in and take up the slack while I'm gone. Of course I've been 'gone' so much these past months you probably wouldn't miss me...right? Well, that's why I'm telling you, I'll be MORE gone than usual...Happy springtime everyone! See you soon...
Even more than usual!! Apparently I am going to have to figure out how to publish pics with Picasa all over again...drat!! I've posted these through Blogger, hoping for the best.... First pic(I think) is an across the street shot, looking towards downtown. Second one is an across the street of my new home. As I said, it's an old grocery store. Many of the older business here were built with this "shotgun" approach. The lots are deep, but narrow. The big windows downstairs are my front room, and obviously, that front door opens right onto Main St. I use the side door on the right side of the building primarily. Friend Jean lives upstairs, and we are connected by an inside back stairway in her laundry room. I never get wet on rainy days *VBS*
Here's a snap of my stash slowly being put into a walk in closet in the small 2nd bedroom. It's now my sewing room. I show it when its a bit more organized. Small room, too much STUFF!
And here's the view for April, looking south out my side door. In the last picture of it, there was snow, snow, snow. That's been gone for several weeks now, and I have tulips and daffodils blooming in the other side yard.
Everyone is Irish on the 17th of March! And some of us are Irish the rest of the year also *VBS* I'm having a glorious day, enjoying our 70 degree temperatures. Definitley NOT the norm for WI in March. It's "March Madness" time here, with the top teams from all over the state enjoying tournament fever and the hopes of winning a big trophey for their school. The boys are in Madison right now, and the girls go next. I do enjoy high school basketball alot more than the professional teams. I've been busy cleaning and sorting out projects in my new sewing room. Hope to have some pictures real soon, when it's presentable! Kick up your heels and give the Irish jig a try!
I've hung the first quilt!! I pinned this little personal challenge quilt above my sewing machine, It's an odd little thing, but I like it, and it's hand quilted, something I'm not doing much of anymore My hands have grown quite stiff over the past few years. Ebby says it's home, she has found a pile of quilts I'm sorting. This week I'm working on finishing up this Scot's Plaid from the Rainbow Scraps Challenge of 2011.
And last, but not least, another snow picture for those of you who don't have snow of your own...enjoy!
trying to inch my way back into the world. Today is the first time the camera has been connected to the computer since I left The Valley in Oct. At first I couldn't find the Rubbermaid with the cord that connects it to the computer. And after that was found, I got lost. These first two pictures are my view looking west and southwest. The steps in the first picture lead upstairs to Jean's part of the Duplex. As I said, it's an old building. I'll take some pictures from across the street soon. There are a lot of old things here, lots of old ,very large houses left over from a more prosperous time. Once upon a time the railroad ran through, there was a creamery or two, and a movie theater. These days we are lucky to have a gas station and a hardware store! One learns to manage. This set of 16 patch blocks(loosely based on Amanda Jean's 36 patch sew along) are from a Moda jelly roll,"Merry and Bright". I have 52 of them to lay out and join up. A couple more jelly rolls have been turned into quilt blocks, but not flimsies, as yet. Finding that I really loved her 'method' of making this block, I've carried on with it, using odds and ends of scraps, strips and small yardages. If I can get the 8 pieces I need from a scrap, it becomes part of another 16 patch. Luckily I'm not bored easily, and am still enjoying making these, as each one is different! Other projects have been worked on, but NO finishes as yet. Now that I've dived in, I try to be here more. I've joined the String-Thing Along and am working on that with plaids. Hugs to all!!