Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Good Morning!

  I hope Christmas was a blessing for all!  Our Christmas was better than LaDonna and I thought it would be.  Her son was able to come; she and Dad came for the day; LaDonna and her husband were able to Skype during present opening; and we were able to talk to my son and daughter-in-law in California.  ( Evidently, Skype had an overload and we could not connect with them!) And needless to say, the grandchildren were bouncing off the walls and ceiling! Momma would have really enjoyed seeing them and their reactions! I think we all had Momma with us in our thoughts and hearts.

I would like to thank all of you for your kind comments and encouragement.  For those of you who have mentioned that you would be interested in the walker bag pattern,I dug out my pattern and the following is the website.


Hope you can enjoy creating with it! Best wishes!  And you were right...my mother-in-law loved it!  She told my husband that the other residents were all talking about it and wanted one!!!


Saturday, December 17, 2011


Merry Christmas to one and all!!

It is a week until Christmas and I'm sure that everyone has been  and is busy.  I know that LaDonna is busy working every spare minute on a quilt...not for Christmas but it is so large  that  she is trying to get it completed as soon as possible.  Too many other things are calling her name!

I have also been busy also but on a much smaller level. As I mentioned posts ago, my mother-in-law is not an easy person to get anything for.  I had already given her a quilt so I knew that was out for now.  When we last saw her, she had an "institutional" walker bag.  Light Bulb!!!!!  So I made her a much prettier walker bag.  Just hope she uses it.

My granddaughter is in Nursery School this year.  So of course she had a classroom Christmas program and party.  She has a small class.  Ummmm....small number of children. Why not make something for them for her Christmas present to give them?  Here's what I came up with......

Her momma went to the party and reported back that the kids liked them but the other moms said that they were "just too cute" and "adorable".  So I guess they were a hit.  Now on to the last two projects......

I hope that you all have a wonderful Christmas and a terrific New Year!


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hey Strangers!

As from earlier posts, y'all know that there had been several additions to my husband's family.  Between babies and new spouses, there have been 4 new members added to the family since the spring.  (He comes from a much larger family than LaDonna and I do!) What does that do for me??? Well, it has kept me very busy in my sewing room. However, with first one thing and several of another, it has taken a bit of time to get things completed. And all are late except one and that is this weekend!  So I thought I'd try to show you a few pictures of what I've been trying to get finished......

Initial wall hangings for all of the babies and their siblings.......

new families because of weddings.........

The following is for the special woman that cuts my hair, my daughter's hair and even my granddaughter's and LaDonna's hair when she is visiting.  This woman even rode with me to Mom and Dad's house when Momma couldn't make the ride to her! I had her oldest son in one of my classes years ago and he just presented her with a granddaughter!

And this last one is for the daughter of friends of mine.  I went all through school with her dad and worked with her mom in college. She and her siblings call me aunt.

I know this is rather long.  It seems like I got everything finished all at once!  I'll try to break it up more in the future!


Saturday, October 15, 2011

An Enjoyable Weekend

Diana and I had such a nice time this weekend.  On Friday we had lunch with our mother's "gang" of friends from early childhood and school.  Yes, that's right. Can you believe it! These wonderful ladies all went to school together with our mom and they are still friends and get together for lunch once a month.  That's amazing to me on so many levels!  We'll probably never hear all the stories of their times together but I know they've laughed and cried with each other over the years.  One story told at this lunch was of a scrapbook that our mom had.  She had a napkin from a hamburger diner in the scrapbook and when she showed it to one of her friends, she asked her, "Does this smell burgerly?" in all seriousness.  That line still makes her friends laugh! How precious these ladies are and how I wish I had a group of friends like that!  Now, I know they are probably not going to like that I put their pictures on the blog because some were caught at an awkward moment, but I love the pictures anyway because they are my mother's friends!

After that wonderful lunch, we went to a quilt shop and of course, had fun there!  This shop has several of the huge embroidery machines set up and my dad, being the curious tinker that he is, had to ask how in the world do those things work?!  He was amazed at all the computer diagrams and buttons and threads and couldn't believe it when the woman gave him a cap with an eagle embroidered on it.  He was so pleased.  I tried out a table top long arm machine and loved it!  16 inches of space to quilt in but not the 12 feet of room needed for a frame.  Added that to my wish list!

We continued the fun today and went back to the quilt shop that Dad and I had gone to the other day.  We had more time because Dad stayed home so no pressure.  I found fabric that I had missed the last time and their prices can't be beat.  Maybe Diana and I had a little too much fun!  When Dad and I went the other day, I didn't take my camera but this time I did.  I just have to show you what we saw! 
 This is the front view:
This is the back view:
 A barn further down the road:
Aren't they beautiful! 

And when I saw this, I had to put it on here for Tony because he loves all things Scottish!
Who knew Loch Lomond was in Kentucky?! ;)

I hope you had a wonderful weekend!


Thursday, October 13, 2011

Hello Friends,

It’s now been a month since our mom died. It’s hard to believe; only a month…it feels like much longer. Her funeral was a wonderful testament to her life and love for her Lord. She was loved by so many people. She left such an impact on so many people’s lives. Diana and I want to express our deepest appreciation for all your comments and emails. I have read them over and over, drawing comfort from them each time. Despite our grieving, life goes on, a day, an hour at a time. Priorities have changed. Some days are better than others, which I know is normal.

Diana and I are planning to make a quilt out of our mother’s clothes. We have them sorted by lights, darks, and mediums. We have selected the pattern. I made the backing first because I wanted to be sure I had enough fabric from her clothes before we start cutting them up. That’s as far as we’ve gotten. Diana can only come over on the weekends and Dad keeps me busy the rest of the time. I try to get Dad out of the house as much as possible, even if it’s just going to the doctor. We are doing more of that these days, because he nearly cut his finger off in his workshop working on Christmas projects! Being out of the house doesn’t get much sewing done and it seems like Dad’s projects have become my projects. However, I’m staying away from the wood shop! About the only sewing I’ve done is a little mending, some hexagon blocks (a post for another day!), a pillowcase for a body pillow, and a zippered cover for a foam mattress. I’m hoping to get a little more sewing done; it always makes me feel better to work on my projects.

All the quilt shops around here, and there aren’t that many, are an hour away in each direction. Dad and I went to one the other day. He bought some red heavyweight fabric to cover a book and I bought some Christmas fabric to add to my Farmer’s Wife fabrics. We are planning on going back this weekend so Diana can go too. They had some batik on sale for a great price that would make wonderful backings. And I might buy some more Christmas fabric. Can you tell I’m missing my stash!?

Thank you, my friends, for continuing to check in on our blog and a thank you and welcome to our new followers!


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Our Mom...3/11/1936 - 9/13/2011

Dear Friends,

It is close to midnight and I can't sleep. Our mother died today. My mom died today. That seems so weird writing that...my mom is dead. How can that be? How can she no longer be a part of the world I live in? She practically willed herself to live until I got home, and that rebound surprised everyone. She lasted far longer than we thought possible and told me she loved me until she was no longer able to speak. Hospice told us that during the dying process, the dying person sometimes withdraws and limits their responses to just a few people or even one person. That person was my dad. She would not look at me or respond to me, just kind of slid her eyes over me. Even though I knew what was happening, it was still hard to not have her acknowledge me. That withdrawal from me changed as she was dying. When she was in so much pain and I was giving medicine to her, she would look at me as I told her everything was going to be ok. She watched me as I stroked her head and if I stopped, she let me know to start again just by looking at me. And then when she took her last breath and died, it was just the two of us, looking into each other's eyes.

Despite the heaviness of our loss, we received words of joy from Diana’s 4 year old granddaughter. When told that Nana was in heaven, she asked, “Is Nana all better now?” Yes, she’s all better. “Is she happy?” Yes, she’s very happy now. “Yippee, Yeah!", she shouted as she jumped up and down and clapped her hands. And I know that the joy of an innocent child is being multiplied by the angels in heaven, welcoming her home.


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Dear Followers

I read my sister's post and your responses to her words with tears in my eyes. I know that you know already but I want to say it ...We appreciate your thoughts, prayers, and long distance support so much during this time. I don't know which one of us has the more difficult time...LaDonna because she is there every day or me as I travel back and forth on the weekends. I want to be there (and feel like I need to be there) but am unable due to home responsibilities. I am so torn. Anyway, thank you and please continue your loving support. As I was reading with the tears, I felt the hugs and love.


For some reason the comment button was not working earlier. I have copied the comments to Diana's post. So even though it looks like they are from me, they aren't. Sorry for the confusion..I don't know why it didn't work earlier.


Monday, September 5, 2011

An Update on Our Mom

Dear Friends,

If you're a regular reader of our blog, you know what is happening.  If you're new, I'm thankful you found us, but sorry there's not much quilting/sewing going on.  We are going through a difficult time in our family.  This is a personal post so I'll understand if you don't want to read it.

Last Wednesday, as Tony and I were in the midst of packing and cleaning, my dad called and said hospice was expecting my mom to die within 24 hours.  I told my dad to tell my mom to wait for me to get there.  We started driving at 9:30 Thursday morning and got to Tennessee at 3:45 Friday morning. Two vehicles fully loaded; a trailer, also fully loaded; a car top carrier bursting at the seams, and a motorcycle in the back of the truck...slow going.  What normally takes me 14 to 14 1/2 hours took us 18.  Mom was awake and literally waiting on me to get home.  When she saw me, she was so excited, her eyes got big and round and she wouldn't let go of me.  Diana had tried to prepare me for how she looks now, but really, no words could have expressed how she is.  The diseases have ravaged her body.  We stayed up the rest of the night/morning talking and hugging and saying  "I love you" repeatedly.  I lay between my mom and dad on the bed.  She told my dad, "Isn't this wonderful!  My baby is home!" 

I've now been here a little over a week and after the rally Mom had when I came home, she is declining once more.  But not a day, and practically an hour goes by that Mom doesn't tell me that she loves me. Even during the painful process of having a catheter put in, she was telling me she loves me.  Diana was here for several days so Mom had both her kids home together and she repeatedly told us that she loves us and that there was no difference in her love for us.  Like she had to tell us that!

For the next several days after I got here, Mom was making us laugh at the things she said, cracking some jokes, just about every time she was rested and awake.  That is not happening as often now.  We have no way of knowing how long she'll last.  Hospice tells us every death is different but there are common stages.  She is definitely in transition and there are signs she is moving closer to death.  But she could still stay with us for a bit longer.  It's amazing how strong she is, despite the frailness of her body.  She is sleeping/resting more now, not eating or drinking as much, which is to be expected. 

As I sit beside her, watching her breathe, stroking her head, I'm still learning from her. My mom is a highly educated woman, has worked her whole life, been a pivitol part of so many people's lives, loved and served her Lord and family. She says Heaven will be wonderful and smiles when she's talking about it. She is looking forward to seeing Jesus and her mother. She is quick to tell us she loves us. She won't put up with any complaining or whining and she's not afraid to tell you to stop it. She may not know what she wants all the time, but she knows what she doesn't want and lets you know about it. She is such an encourager, thinks I can do anything, and loves the quilt blocks I'm working on as I sit with her. She says she has the most wonderful family. She is proud of her grandchildren and thinks they can do no wrong. She brightens up at just the mention of her great-grandchildren and tells us to let those babies do what they want! (That's not what we heard growing up, I can tell you that!) She is so thankful for the friends that drop by and always tells them she's fine when they ask how she's doing. (Such a Southern lady!) Even though she doesn't understand how people all over the world know about her, she is thankful for your prayers.

I know we are not the only ones going through difficult times.  We deeply appreciate your thoughts and prayers for our family.


Friday, August 19, 2011

My Sewing Room

Oh my gosh, my poor sewing room!  I don't know when I'll see it again...it's going to storage.  So sad.


Friday, August 12, 2011

Farmer's Wife Block 3

From LaDonna:   My basket block: 

From Diana:  Here are my two blocks...of course they look different in person.  The red has silver snowflakes on the white and the dark is actually dark green and black checks. 
I thought that they would look better than they do. I absolutely agonize over every color for each and every block. I change my mind countless of times and when I do decide and cut the fabric a nagging little voice keeps asking if maybe it would have looked better the other way!


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Dear Friends,

I debated about writing this...you know, putting it all out there.  But I've come to realize that the term "blogging friends" really just means "friends".  As an army wife, friends come and go, some are friends just for a season, and a few are friends for life.  When I started this blog, I had no idea what the support, in comments and emails, would come to mean to me from my blogging friends.  So, I wanted to let you know what is going on.

As I've mentioned, we are moving.  Movers will be here next week.  What I haven't told you is my husband will be moving to Virginia for his new job and I (and the Scotties) will be moving back to my parents' house in Tennessee.   My mother is fading away.  My dad is her caregiver, but things are getting to be too much for him, as his own health is declining.  Hospice is now involved and my sister keeps warning me to be prepared for how bad she is.  I think I've cried more in the past month than I have in, well, forever.  And I'm not a pretty cryer!  But right now, I can't stop.  The tears just keep coming. 

My husband will go next week to look for an apartment.  Evidently, despite the internet age we're living in, you have to be there in person to get an apartment.  I will be here for the packers.  We are setting aside things I will take, things he will take, and then what the movers will store.  We've been through many separations before, but this is harder.  My stress level is pretty intense; I'm eating Tums like candy, not sleeping that well, my mind just keeps going in circles.  I'm already missing my husband and he's not even gone yet! 

As this is mainly a quilting/sewing blog, you'll understand why there won't be many posts from me.  I'm taking a couple of projects with me, but I'm not really expecting much progress.  Diana's life is crazy hectic, but hopefully, she'll be able to post some things now and then.  I know she's working on a couple of things when she can between chasing those grandkids around!   I'll be checking in on your blogs, may not have time to leave a comment, but I really enjoy seeing what all you're doing.

Love to you all,


Monday, August 8, 2011

Nothing like a deadline

My husband likes Hawaiian shirts. He's found a few cotton ones at Goodwill and he really enjoys wearing them...comfortable and cool. The problem is most of the shirts in the stores are made out of rayon.  Rayon and heat don't play well together. When we went to the market days days a few weeks ago, a guy was selling cotton shirts for $70 and up! Some of them were out of fabric at Jo-Ann's...I know because I've seen it there! So my husband said he could make his own for way less than that! Now my husband has made 18th centhury reproduction clothes, all by hand, including the buttonholes! He does a great job, makes nice, small, neat stitches.  He didn't want me to make his shirt; he wanted to make it himself! So he did!  Here's some pictures of him in my sewing room, happily sewing!

I helped him fussy cut the pattern (gotta get those dragons centered!), helped him a little bit with the instructions (do you know how long it's been since I've sewn clothes?!), and when he got frustrated with the buttonholes, I did that and sewed the buttons on by machine (love that feature on my sewing maching...once sewed 300 buttons on a quilt in practically no time at all...but I digress!)  So since the movers will be here in a couple of weeks, he finally got it finished!

Can you see the dragon on the back?  I think this fabric would make some very interesting kaleidoscope blocks!  By the way, this is McCall's pattern 2149.  He did a great job!


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Farmer's Wife Update

Diana and I are both doing the Farmer's Wife blocks, but very sporadically!  We wanted no pressure, no deadlines, just enjoy the progress, however slowly that might be!  Here's what we've done so for in a combination post.

From Diana: 

What on earth am I doing??

I must be crazy!  When LaDonna and I first started the Farmer's Wife project, we decided to to it with Christmas colors.  She would do reds and I would do burgundies, since we each had more of those colors.  So I thought!   While I was gathering the Christmas greens and reds to send to LaDonna, I discovered that I also had lots of reds and greens in addition to my burgundies and dark greens!  I got to thinking about all of that fabric.  What am I going to do with all of this stuff?  Then it came to me...I have two children and two different color ways.  Duh... make one of each and maybe there won't be any fussing about one child eventually getting "the Christmas Quilt".   That way each of my beloved children will get a Christmas quilt from Mom.

Here's what I've done so far....block one and two for the red version:

Block one in burgandy:

Block two for burgandy, I know it's a bit different, but it is Christmas fabric and it works for the burgandy colors:


LaDonna's block one and two:

I am thoroughly enjoying sewing these blocks on my Featherweight!  We are doing paper piecing on some, rotary cutting and regular sewing on others, anything to avoid hand sewing!  I can understand now why some people say these little blocks are addictive!

It may be a while before we are able to post again.  Life is getting a bit complicated right now, but I hope you'll still check in with us from time to time. 


Monday, July 25, 2011

Texas Pride Quilt and Thread Review

You know, you can actually get a quilt made when you stay at home.  Duh.  I finally finished the Texas Pride quilt for the shop.  I took the quilt to the shop today and it's now hanging in the front room. 

I had to piece the back because, well, you know, I messed up I planned it that way!  Looking at the picture of the back here on the blog, I realize I got the design lined up pretty good, purely by accident a well planned quilt!

I used the Aurifil invisible thread in clear to quilt this quilt. 

Let me just say...it's great!  First of all, I compared it to the usual invisible thread I get (at Jo-Ann's, no disrespect to Jo-Ann's...I get a lot of stuff there).   I put both threads between my thumb and finger and slid them along.  The Aurifil was smoother.  Second, it is not unruly, uncoiling madly from the spool, tangling everywhere.  Third, I bought the cone, 16,400 yards for $20.00.  The invisible thread at Jo-Ann's is $5.49 for 1500 yards.  Let's do the math...Jo-Ann's cost three times as much as Aurifil! 

To use the thread, I got out my cone holder, after all, that's a big cone of thread!

I used the Aurifil thread in the bobbin too.  Now, I know, the quilt police say never do that, but I did and it worked great!  I'm such a rule breaker.  When I filled my bobbin the first time, I stopped it before it automatically stopped, just because I didn't want to take a chance on it overfilling.  The second time I filled the bobbin, I let it go and my machine stopped it with no overfill.  And,...that was it!  I used just under 2 bobbins for this entire quilt!  I put my tension at 3, which on my machine is the low end of the normal setting.  My only negative is, even though it's Italian thread, it's not fast!  I have a lead foot, especially when I'm sewing straightline grids and the Aurifil thread couldn't keep up with me.  When I went pedal to the metal,...uh, carpet, I had skipped stitches. But that also happens with other threads.  When I put my machine speed to medium, I had no skipped stitches.  Oh, and when they say zero breakage?  They mean it.   I quilted a straightline qrid over the entire quilt, every 1 3/8 inch.  Here's a picture of the quilting close up:

It really is non-reflective, like it's advertised.  Practically invisible.

So, once again, I'm impressed with Aurifil thread.  I am definitely a fan!


Sunday, July 17, 2011

In Progress: My Last Shop Sample

I've been working more at the shop lately and I got suckered in was asked to make one more shop sample.  Friday night I cut the 2 1/2 inch strips, Saturday evening I cut them into their proper lengths, and today I made the quilt top.  The pattern is "Texas Pride" by Gone Quiltin'.  I still have to applique the star and of course, quilt it.  I'm thinking just an overall wavy grid design.  I'm going to try out Aurifil's invisible thread for the first time.  I've read that it can be used in the bobbin as well so I'll let ya'll know how it turns out.  Here's the top on my design wall.

I have to cut the kits tomorrow at the shop, but I hope to have my quilt finished by the end of the week.  That's the plan anyway.  We'll see how it goes!


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Paper piecing

When LaDonna asked if I wanted to do the Farmer's Wife blocks, I shuddered.  Paper piecing!! Gasp!  I had never done any of that before. I panicked but once again after her pep talk, she talked me into it (something she has been able to do since she was born, by the way).   I worked on the first block on Saturday between "MiMi, come here!" and mysterious crashes,bangs and thuds with sudden quiet and the rest of the "stuff" I got to do on the weekend.  It took a bit to get my mind around it but I got the first one finished.  Then I read LaDonna's post....What do you mean it was supposed to be the other way???    I am not doing it over.  I was lucky to get it done the first time!!!  Soooo, she showed you hers so I guess I'll show you mine.

 As far as the other "stuff" for the weekend,  she gets  a featherweight while I "get" to shop for a new stove!!!!!


Monday, July 11, 2011

January 17, 1955

Yep, that's the date my "new" Singer Featherweight was born!  One of 50,000!  I was working at the shop (the owner says I'm the shop's "call girl", since I'm the one who gets called in when someone can't work!) when a lady brought it in.  All I saw as they were discussing it was the case.  So many of the cases of these machines are in bad shape with the handles broken and the case itself damaged and smelly.  This case looked brand new!  After a while, when I had a chance, I asked if that was a featherweight that had been brought in and was told yes.  She traded it in on a new machine.  I asked how much she was going to sell it for, she told me the price, and I said I wanted to look at it.  She got it out of the case, hooked it up, and started sewing.  That was all it took.  Love!  It is in perfect condition, no rust, hardly used!  I brought it home that afternoon!  It came with two boxes of feet, a buttonhole attachment, the original book, a new book, and the original cord and pedal.

So for my first project on it, I made the first block from the Farmer's Wife book.  It's been a long time since I've done any paper-piecing so it took a while and then when it was all done, I realized it was the reverse of the picture in the book!  Oh, well, I'm not doing it over.

The featherweight did an excellent job of sewing!  I'm pleased with the block even though it's wrong!


Friday, July 8, 2011

My Ruler Organizer

I like rulers.  I don't have every ruler on the market, but I do have several.  Do I use them all?  No. I have my favorites that I use over and over and then I have some that I haven't ever used.  But I like having them!  It's just like any other tool; using the right one makes the job easier.  Since my collection has grown, storing them has become an issue.  There are several ruler organizers out there, but nearly all of them take up valuable counter space or wall space.  I don't know about you, but my sewing room has no room to spare!   So when I saw this ruler hanger, I thought it might be the answer.  Perfect to hang on my sewing room closet door

Once I got it home, of course, I soon realized the pitfalls.  Once you put your rulers on it, to get to the one you need, you have to take the little end covers off, and slide the rulers around which of course  means that some slide off.  All in all just a major hassle.  I told my husband I needed hooks on the hoop to hang my rulers so I could get to the one I needed easily.  He came up with this idea.  He bought some chain at the hardware store.  Using two links, he created these hangers for me.  One link slides around on the hoop; the other he separated to form a hook.  He filed the rough edges smooth so they wouldn't scratch the rulers.  I added the wooden balls (craft section at Jo-Ann's) to separate the hooks.  Now I can get to my rulers easily and they sort of look like giant chandelier earrings on the closet door!

Now my problem is I need to make another one!  Too many rulers!


Wednesday, July 6, 2011

It's done!

Several posts ago, LaDonna posted about her orange Scottie dog contribution to Theresa's project at Confessions of a Craftaholic.  I wanted to contribute but me being me "stewed and stewed" about it. I toyed with several ideas before I finally decided one.  It was mailed today so hopefully she will get it "before it melts"!!

Maybe it will bring a smile to a child's face and  coax them to eat some ice-cream!!!


A Wonderful Book

How is it that for days on end, I have nothing to blog about or that I felt like blogging about and then all of a sudden I have a lot!  I'll have to spread it out over a few days!

First of all, I won!  I won a book on a giveaway at Em Celebrates!  I absolutely love Em and her blog!  She is such a genuinely happy, positive, encouraging person!  And her quilting is stunning! 

I can't believe I didn't already have this book in my collection!  I remember seeing Freddy Moran on Simply Quilts years ago.  She has a no-nonsense approach to color and quilting that I love!  Someday, when we get our forever house, I want to fill it with color...maybe not quite as full as Freddy's house, but I want to have wonderful colors all around!

Thanks, Em!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...