Sunday, November 29, 2009

Over the River and Through the Woods

They came by plane and by car, not to Grandmother's house, but to mine. Both my boys were home for Thanksgiving as the older one flew in from LA and the younger one got a ride home from college. And they both left again this afternoon. We've never had to say goodbye to both boys on the same day so this was tough. I miss them, although I won't miss the mountains of laundry they generated. But the semester ends for my college student on December 17 and the older one is coming back for Christmas on the 19th. Just enough time for the washing machine and dryer to rest up.

Despite all the loading and unloading of the machines, I got some quilting and stitching done this weekend. I finished all the piecing of a quilt top and just need to add borders and sew the backing before it goes off to the quilter's. When I was playing in my stash last weekend, I found enough fat quarters in the fall colors I love to do a quilt with them. I finished cutting all the pieces this weekend. And I'm about half-way done on the Winter Sampler that is to be a birthday present for my daughter in three weeks. Plus visits to two quilt shops to gather supplies for a block of the month my guild is doing and for another quilt I'm planning. I also got to listen to my daughter perform in a choir at a local tree-lighting ceremony. So a pretty good long weekend. Tomorrow, it's back to the grindstone and the mad rush to get ready for Christmas.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Black Friday


I live approximately 3.1 miles from the largest mall on the East Coast. It's huge--we have Macy's, Bloomingdales, Penneys, Sears, Nordstroms, Lord and Taylor and Nieman and Marcus plus Crate and Barrel, Tiffany's, Bath and Body Works, Victoria's Secret, Gap and just about any type of restaurant or specialty store you can think of. It's a destination and busloads of shoppers come in throughout the year. The hotels across from it offer Black Friday packages and there are no vacancies at these inns during Thanksgiving weekend. Let them enjoy their shopping today, and may they spend lots so my real estate taxes stay low. As a "native", I know how to duck in and duck out during the slow times in order to cross items off my gift list. No way, no how am I going to enter the fray today.
But, my local quilt shop is having a sale and I know how to avoid the mall traffic to get there :)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!


A happy Thanksgiving to my readers! I hope your day is filled with blessings from family and friends and wonderful food.
It will be just the five of us for dinner today which is fabulous. My older son wasn't able to join us last year and the table felt empty. He flew in from LA last Friday and it has been great to have him home. He's filled our house with his friends and we have loved catching up with them, too. His 5 year high school reunion is on Saturday night so I'm sure we'll hear lots more news after that. My younger son came home from college on Tuesday and after finishing a paper that's due next week, slept most of the day yesterday. Writing is a challenge for him so I'm glad he got this assignment out of the way.
Yesterday was a half-day for students at my school. Teachers had to stay until 3:00, but we were given time to work on report cards. I got about half of mine finished so I'm way ahead of where I usually am. Last night, I watched a movie (Ghosts of Girlfriends Past--it was horrible, so don't bother) and stitched on the Ornament From H*ll (so named because I had to frog so many stitches). The OFH is finished* and I'm planning to work on Winter Sampler during the rest of the long weekend.
The pies, one pumpkin for my middle son and one cherry for my husband are done. I'm off to start our turkey breast (none of us like dark meat) and enjoy my family.
*#8 finish in my 25-project challenge

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Playing in My Stash

I'm an early riser. My alarm is set for 5:00am during the week and I find that I wake up around that time on weekends, too. (The end of daylight savings time meant that I was waking up around 4:00 which is just a tad bit early even for me.) The rest of my family likes to sleep in. So sometimes on Saturday morning, I use those early hours to play in my stash. I saw a picture on the Sister's Choice blog of a snowball quilt that would be really fun to do. Even though I won't be participating in the challenge, I immediately ordered 40 Fabulous Quick-Cut Quilts from Amazon. As a bonus, it also had the pattern for the Peppermint Twist quilt I've been lusting after ever since I saw it in a shop in Virginia last summer. The Snowball pattern in the book is from scraps, but I really want to do a red and white quilt. Then Sister's Choice had a link to show what Cupcakes & Daisies did with some of the centers of her snowballs and I just had to do that with my quilt, too. During my early morning stash dive, I found three reds and a few creams I could use and a fat quarter of a really cute fabric with candy canes and gingerbread for the centers. Darn, only three reds and not enough creams. Guess I'll have to go fabric shopping.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Sorry I've Been MIB*

*Missing in Blogland



We've been busy people at my house getting college applications sent off. It didn't happen without a lot of drama and a very rare fight between my daughter and me. My poor husband finally negotiated a truce. But I swear these children are programmed to engage in behaviors during their senior year of high school that makes you want them to leave (and the sooner the better).


Then there's been an on-going home repair problem that still isn't resolved. Plus a wedding last weekend. And work--there's always work.


I finished a quilt top for my daughter and took it to the quilter's last week. I spent some time laying out the 100 blocks I made earlier this year and got an arrangement I like so I've been sewing those together. I also realized that my daugher is turning 18 at the end of December and I had planned to make this for her. It's a Lorri Birmingham design that I got at Heart of Cross Stitch or CATS. I'm planning to use it as the top of a jewelry box which I also bought from Lorri Birmingham. Here's my progress so far
I think panic will be ensuing shortly.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

What's in Your Bag?

Anna asked this question and though I'm late to the party (hey, I've been busy!!), I finally took these pictures when I was home during daylight hours yesterday. This is only one of my stitching bags, but it's the one that travels in my car and to guild meetings. It's from Tarzhay and has served me well over the last few years. Right now it contains a Kathy Schenkel canvas ornament project for the eventual Advent tree, an over-one project that has no business being in the travel bag (it was a guild project that hasn't been moved into the stitching basket beside my couch), a Lights of Advent ornament (in the Q-snaps) along with a working copy and a bag of threads, my name card for guild meetings, two pair of scissors, a Vera Bradley wristlet containing packages of needles and a doodle cloth.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A Quilt with No Name



Here's the third of the four quilt tops I sent out to be quilted. This one is for my daughter. She picked out the fabrics and we originally had another pattern in mind. When I started this quilt, I realized that the other pattern wouldn't work and I developed this one to feature the red and white print. You may remember it from the post about the repair I needed to make. Again, this was a learning experience. I learned to "fussy cut" blocks and I also learned the importance of checking the layout before sewing. The perfectionist in me isn't happy with this layout and this is another project I won't be showing to my quilt guild. My daughter loves it, though, and it will be used. But neither one of us can come up with a name for it so suggestions are welcome.