Just my musings about life, quilting, my family and my dog.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Fun Giveaway

Marj at Eclectic Quilter is celebrating her 100th follower by having a very cute giveaway.
Go have a look at what she's been up to and see if you can get some inspiration.

Have a great day.  How is it being back to work after a 3-day weekend?  I'm dragging a little!

Design Wall Monday on Tuesday

I was so surprised to read Judy's blog yesterday and see her Design Wall Monday post!  I mean, TODAY is Monday, right?  Holiday Mondays just throw me all off.

In any case, late or not, here is the unholy mess that is my design wall:

It is actually two things layered one atop the other.  The one behind, with the red  and pink borders, is a top I finished at the Tahoe retreat.  I'll reveal it later.  Covering it is the backing I am attempting to fashion with every last scrap of the fabric from the kit.  I love the fabric but I don't want to see it showing up in my stash or future scrap quilts.  It is very much not my typical colors and I'm afraid the pieces of it will stick out like sore thumbs in future scrap quilts.

It's actually been rather fun seeing what I can do with the various pieces I had left over.  I started by sewing parts into 13" blocks. I made 8 of those which I sashed with two long pieces of green I had left.  At this point I was pretty much out of anything wider than 2 inches or longer than 10 inches.  So, I chopped them all into 8" strips, halved the wider ones and sewed a bunch of piano keys together.  That is what is hanging on the left side.  I have enough to add to the top and bottom of this segment.  At that point, I think I have enough of the red (plus a bit from my stash) to go around the edge and finish it off.

Do you ever do this, spend almost as much time piecing a back as you do the top?  It's been surprisingly satisfying.

What's on your design wall?  Head over to Judy's blog and see what others are working on.  There is a ton of beauty being shown there.

Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted.   
                                   --John Lennon

Friday, May 27, 2011

Help for Joplin

I read Judy Laquidara's blog every day - often several times a day.  She lives in Missouri and shops in Joplin frequently.  Like the rest of us, she has been saddened by the devastation there.  In response, she is hosting a give away to raise money for Joplin's Red Cross.  She is donating quilts for a drawing.  Here is one of the quilts she is donating:

All you have to do to be entered is donate $25.00 to the Red Cross.

Go to her her blog  here to find all the details.

Let's see if we can blow her, and Joplin, away with our generosity.

My Tahoe Retreat

I was in Tahoe for a wonderful retreat May 12.  The day we arrived the weather was gorgeous and warm.  The day we were to leave we were greeted by this!  Now, I'm from Southern California where an extreme weather shift looks like this: 70 degrees today, 66 degrees tomorrow.  Everyone will feel compelled to remark on how chilly it will be tomorrow.  The above scene is just ridiculous.  I read blogs by you midwesterners and your 70 one day and snow the next weather but this was in CALIFORNIA for goodness sake!

Here is what it looked like out the window on our harrowing drive to the Sacramento airport:

And this out the front window:

And this is why I am planning to stay in Southern California where I can count on the weather to be a non-event.

The first fall of snow is not only an event, it is a magical event.  
You go to bed in one kind of a world and 
wake up in another quite different, 
and if this is not enchantment 
then where is it to be found?
                                         ~J.B. Priestley

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

I've been bad. Very bad.

At least as far as blogging, I've been bad.  I think the fire and being out of my office for two weeks was a little more discombobulating than I thought it would be.  Apparently, I use my office computer to write most of my blogs and it was unavailable for two weeks so I went AWOL.

This is the tiny amount of fire damage our office experienced but what a lot of smell!  Just above the fire is the always-open window in the bathroom connected to my office so all the smoke went in there.  Also, the burned studs are right where an outlet in my bathroom is and the whole area of wall inside the bathroom had to be torn out and rebuilt.

I did scrub the entire bathroom and all the contents but the next day it smelled just as bad so we called in an expert.  They sent in a team who rescrubbed every surface, every item, every square inch of everything in my office and bathroom.  They found things and places that I didn't know existed.  Then they sealed the rooms and turned on an ozone machine overnight. The next day there was no more smoke smell and the weird ozone smell dissipated after a few hours.  I finally got back in my office last Thursday.  YIPPEE!!  It feels good to be "home" again.

I have lots to report on the quilting front from the last two weeks but that will be for another post which I promise will be sooner than two weeks from now.

He is the happiest, be he king or peasant,
who finds peace in his home.
                                                              Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

May UFO Assignment and My Luckiest Day ever.

Judy pulled #9 for our next challenge.  Here is the next victim:

I am actually very excited to be finishing this quilt because I think it's going to be very cool looking.  I think it may even be appropriate for a man and that type of quilt seems to be hard to achieve.  Check back at the end of the month and see how it turned out.

SO, today turned out to be the luckiest day ever because my office didn't burn down.  My husband and I own a very old house (OK, old to California, I can hear you east coast people laughing) that our two businesses share.  He has the front half and I have the back half.  Apparently, the main power comes into the house right outside my bathroom window.  When I arrived at work this morning the whole house smelled like someone had made a campfire in an old washtub somewhere under the house.  It was a very bad, very strong smell.  I looked EVERYWHERE and saw nothing burning or smoking, nothing.  So, I called the old man and made him come to figure out what was going on. Long story short, after spending a lot of time searching the attic, he finally made an inspection of the exterior of the house and discovered that a tree had pulled down the power line that entered the house.  It sparked and caught a section of the wall and insulation on fire.  Thanks to good living and poor home-ownership, it turns out that the whoever installed the power line did a poor job that left the wall open to some leakage.  The large amount of rain we've had made the whole wall soggy which must have extinguished the fire before it caught the whole house on fire.  We had to call the power company.  They turned off all power which made today a holiday for me.  Tomorrow I get to go scrub all the walls in my bathroom and office. I also get to remove all the stuff I store in my bathroom.  Sounds a whole lot better than finding a new office and all the headaches and paperwork and lost income that would involve.

SO, you see, today was a lucky day.

It's not the event that determines how you feel- 
it's the meaning you attach to the event.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Design Wall Monday

There are just a bunch of bits on my wall this week.  Well, that and that darn Myna Bird Quilt that is still hanging around waiting for inspiration.  Here is one of the bits that I am getting excited about:

I took Bonnie Hunter's Blue Ridge Beauty class at Road to California earlier this year.  In between my regular projects, I have been plugging away at the 224 blocks I need to finish this quilt.  No, this is NOT all I have completed.  I think I have about 80 completed blocks, all of the 1/2 square triangles, and almost all of the 4-patches.

It is going to be for our king-size bed because DH has started to grumble that "everyone has a quilt but us."

 Here is a reminder of Bonnie's quilt:

 (Posted sideways because blogger refuses to leave my photos rotated even though they are rotated in my album.  GRRRR)

You all have a great day.

Quilts for Japan

I managed to get a box sent off to Quiltmaker with quilts for their humanitarian efforts for Japan.  (WHEW that was a really awkward sentence!)  My friend Patti gave me two of hers to include.  The quilt above if one of the ones I made.

Here's the second quilt I sent off.
 I love this bright quilt.  I made it from a pattern on Bonnie Hunter's website.  It's called Scrap X.  I also really like the back that I made from 10-inch squares of a bunch of leftover kid fabric that I've been hoarding hanging on to for a long time.  This quilt is a great way to use up all those short strips that you can't bear to waste.

(BTW these two photos look odd because Blogger won't keep them rotated in the correct orientation.  SIGH)

The next two quilts were made by Patti.  When I first started quilting I would hang onto every quilt I made.  Patti would generously give away quilts right and left.  I was amazed at her generosity.  After ten years of quilting, I am finally finding myself easily parting with quilts.  It feels good.  I am at peace knowing that it is the PROCESS of making the quilt that I really love.  I don't have to own it too.

Go forth and donate.  It feels good!

"No act of kindness, no matter how small, is every wasted." 
                                                            - Aesop

Sunday, May 1, 2011


I finished this little quilt instead of my assigned quilt because I couldn't find it!!  I did finally find it and I will complete it before the end of the year.  I will.  Really.  Stop doubting me.

This little cutie top was made with the 1/2 square triangles that my guild friend, Audrey gave me a few years ago. Check out Judy's blog to see what other people are doing to clean up their UFOs.

You all go out there and finish something!