Monday, August 31, 2015

The Weekend Wrap-up



Wow, it’s been a long time since I’ve done a Weekend Wrap-up – since early April, to be exact.  I guess you could say that it’s long overdue?  Ha!


Since the weekends start on Friday mornings here at Chez Nana, the weekend got off to a busy, busy start.  I took DD and the Ts out for some back-to-school shopping.  First though, I had to haul the tubs of clothes we’re storing in our basement so DD could go through and find anything that would fit T#3 and T#4.  Face it, when living on a single income with 4 kiddos, hand-me-downs are a fact of life.  Thankfully there were a lot of pieces that would work for the 2 littles … too often the sizes and seasons don’t seem to coincide.  It took us a total of 5 hours to shop (with an hour’s break for lunch) … and even then we didn’t find everything we were looking for.  T#1 is getting increasingly difficult to shop for … do you know how difficult it is to find jeans with a 26” waist and 32” inseam?  And on a budget no less?  We then headed back to DD’s for dinner followed by a “Minecraft Party” (the Ts’ reward for enduring all that shopping – ha!).  It was a long, exhausting day … but I loved every minute of it. 


Thankfully I was able to rest up on Saturday … with my needle and thread.  I had hoped to be able to get out my border hoop and get started on the outermost quilting, but I didn’t quite make it.  But I did get some of my connector hexies attached to one of my Martha Washington’s Flower Garden blocks.  IMG_0001I’m not done basting my connector hexies, but I was anxious to get a few connected. 


We spent all day yesterday with DD … her former step mom’s celebration of life service was yesterday, and I think DD appreciated our being there … our jobs were to support her and to help entertain the Ts. 



There’s nothing much on my schedule for today, so I think I’ll spend it in the sewing room.  My Facebook hand quilting group’s Block of the Month for September was  chosen yesterday, and I’m thankful that it was announced early as we will be gone most of September.  I know that if I don’t get it done before we leave, it won’t get done in time for Reveal Day.  It looks to be a fairly easy block, so I should have time for some hand work. 


Speaking of leaving, DH is chomping at the bit to leave early.  We’ve talked a lot over the last 6 years about returning to Charleston, but we just haven’t made it happen.  If we can find inexpensive lodging, we could leave Tuesday instead of Thursday and have a couple of days in Charleston.  We’re not even expecting to stay in Charleston itself; when we visited Charleston 6 years ago, we stayed in Mt. Pleasant, a small little town just across the river from Charleston … it took only 6-8 minutes to drive from our hotel to the historic district.  But even lodging there has gotten pretty pricey … so we may stick to our original plans or find somewhere else that we’d like to visit between here and Hilton Head. 



I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that brings you joy ... have a great day!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday’s Frivolities

Last week, I decided to participate in my first ever Friday Night Sew In … and guess what?  I won the August prize!  Look!
(Picture courtesy of
Isn’t that the sweetest thing? 

I’m happy to report that 3 raccoons have been “relocated”.  Let’s hope they don’t find their way back to our neighborhood.  3 raccoons (traveling in a pack) had been sighted by neighbors, so we’re hoping that our neighborhood is now raccoon-free, but we’ve set out another trap, just in case.  

I don’t have a whole lot left to do on my Kiss quilt … I have about two hoops’ worth of quilting before I can get out my border hoop and finish up the outer 4” all around the quilt.  There really is light at the end of the tunnel.  Maybe I can get the quilting done before we leave for Hilton Head after all? 

Maybe  if I pick the quilt back up and put in some more stitches after dinner, I can … but for some reason, by the time we sit down to watch the game in the evening, I’m done with quilting for the day and ready to work on my hexies, especially when the weather has been so absolutely delightful … who wouldn’t rather sit out on the deck and stitch hexies?

Speaking of weather, it looks like summer is on her way back.  We’ll be back into the 90s this weekend.  Oh well, the respite from the heat and humidity was nice while it lasted. 

Today looks to be a busy day … I’m taking the Ts (and DD) out for some back-to-school shopping.  Red heart

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that brings you joy ... have a great day!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Tuesday's Trifles

What a wonderfully productive weekend it was here at Chez Nana. I was able to make some good progress on my Kiss quilt ... I'm just about ready to turn the corner to the fourth and final side.  Of course, I must remind you all that the end isn't quite in sight yet as I'm stitching all the way to within 2" of the edges of the quilt ... when I finish the fourth side, I'll get out my border hoop and then I can finish up this quilt.  There were times when I had 4 needles going at the same time.
Too bad I don't have 2-3 more pairs of hands ... I could really go to town on my quilting. Ha!  

I was also able to get some more hexies basted ... I still have quite a ways to go on them, but I'll have plenty of time to work on my hexies on our upcoming trip. 

Speaking of our upcoming trip, we're on the countdown - 16 days and counting. So far, the long range forecasts for Hilton Head are showing lower than normal temperatures and increased chances for rain, we really don't care. DH always says that a rainy day at the beach is still better than a nice day at home. Ha!  And seriously, after the summer we've had, it'll be nice to just get away to our Happy Place. 

The rain we had on Saturday brought in a cool front ... the daily highs have been in the 70s and will continue to be in that range for several more days. It was in the mid 50s this morning when Lois and I set out on our walk. It feels like fall, so it seemed only fitting that I make a big pot of soup yesterday afternoon. 
(Forgive the glare from the vent hood lights.)

DH and our neighbor John (Lois' husband) had been chatting about trapping and relocating those pesky raccoons who lounged on our deck a week or so ago and leveled our green beans.  Their discussion morphed into determination after we discovered evidence of a major raccoon party on our deck.  There were a LOT of muddy little paw prints all over our deck and up and down the steps to the deck.  DH had forgotten to put the grill cover back on the grill Friday evening ... there was enough contrast to really see the evidence they left behind.
After we saw that Saturday morning, DH drove straightaway to Rural King and purchased a raccoon trap.  I'm not convinced that they'll be successful in their efforts ... the bait had been taken, the trap had been triggered but there was no raccoon in the trap.  <sigh>   We'll see if they can outsmart those raccoons. I'm not holding my breath. Ha!

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that will bring you joy!

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Welcome to the Weekend

And not a moment too soon, eh?  We got our weekend started (in my little world, the weekend starts Friday morning!) with a trip out to spend the day with my Dad.  At 92, he’s getting frail, getting out is becoming more of a task for him so I like to get out to spend some time with him regularly. 

On the way out to my Dad’s, I reminded DH that in 3 weeks from right then, we’d be in the car as well ... on our way to Hilton Head.  I surprised him as he had been convinced that we were 4 weeks out … it definitely was a pleasant surprise. 

My guild’s Projects Chair has issued a challenge … we are to submit to her a list of quilting goals that we’d like to accomplish by the July 2016 meeting … at least 5 projects we’d like to finish over the next year (she’s leaving the definition of “finish” up to each of us … it could be just a flimsie, or it could be a quilted and bound quilt.  Hmmm … now to decide what 5 projects I’d like to finish).  I would like to think I could get my Martha Washington’s Flower Garden to at least the flimsie stage … and my EPPd Bow Tie quilt, too?  Of course, I should be able to have my Kiss quilt finished, quilted and bound, long before then.  I have a tumbler quilt next up on my list of quilts to make … I don’t know why it couldn’t have it pieced, quilted and bound in the next 10-11 months.  That’s 4 projects … I need at least one more.  Right now, I’m thinking of making a Kaleidoscope quilt after the tumbler quilt, and I’ll need to start another EPP project (for our travels and for swim meets, etc.) … I’ve got the papers to make an EPP sampler, so I guess that’ll be #5.  I’ve added my list to my sidebar, to keep me focused … and maybe so you all can help keep me on track.  Winking smile

We got back home from my Dad’s by 5:00, which meant that I had plenty of time for a night of sewing … especially since the ballgame didn’t start until after 9:00, perfect for a Friday Night Sew In (FNSI).  It was quite delightful outside so I grabbed my EPP case and set up shop out on the deck. Ahhhhh … bliss!  I finished up the last block for my Martha Washington’s Flower Garden; I last worked on this block over a month ago, and since I’ve been slowly but surely making some progress on basting the connector hexies, I was determined to get this block finished.  I had a few seams to stitch on the outer ring as well as the two end hexies to add.  Here’s what the last block looked like on my way out to the deck:IMG_1984
Here’s the finished block out on the deck: IMG_1985I still have to make the partial blocks for the outer edges (to square it up), but I want to get the full blocks finished, surrounded by the connector blocks before I start on the partial blocks. 

And speaking of the connector blocks, I got right to work on basting them after I finished the piecing on my final full block.  By the time I called it a night, I had over 50 hexies to add to my bag of basted hexies.  I’d hoped to get more done, but it was well past my usual bedtime and our Cardinals weren’t making it a game worth staying up for … IMG_1988I need to count them all again, just to see where I stand.  I need over 600 hexies for my connectors, and at last count, I’d basted 145 … I’m guessing I’m over 200 already – a third of the way there.  Looks like I’ll be able to start piecing these connectors while we’re in Hilton Head.

Today my plan is to do more quilting on my Kiss quilt.  But it’s going to be another gorgeous day … I might not be able to resist the urge to spend more time out on the deck.  If that’s the case, I’ve got a few more hundred hexies I could be working on.  Winking smile

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that brings you joy ... have a great day!

Friday, August 21, 2015

Friday’s Frivolity

Wow, I was blown away at how easy it was to “rehome” some no-longer-needed fabrics.  The fabric has been boxed up and shipped out. I've got some supplies and notions, as well as a kit or two, that I may "rehome" after we get back from Hilton Head.

You all may remember the fat quarter sale I posted.  My fat quarter bundle arrived yesterday … just 3 days from order to delivery … now that is service!  I will definitely add them to my list of online shops to frequent.  I’m glad to see they included some green in the bundle, since my stash is low on greens.IMG_1981And look what was included with my fabric! IMG_1982I love how they want to follow up on our orders … and that pin!  Thumbs up  I’ll definitely check them out when I’m shopping online for fabric.

Our garden has not done well this summer, between too much rain this spring, too many stink bugs in our green beans … now this!  IMG_3970Talk about adding insult to injury.  We’re not sure what has literally mowed down over half our green bean plants … we’re wondering if it might be the raccoon that the neighbor’s seen and that we suspect has already paid us a call.  Sad smile

I’ve been productive this week … each morning, I tackle one or two housekeeping chores.  Wednesday it was the stash reorganization, and yesterday it was cleaning the hardwood floors and dusting.  Much better than trying to tackle it all in one day … and it leaves plenty of time for needle and thread.  I won’t be productive today as we’ll be heading out for a visit with my dad. 

Thankfully the temperatures are back up a little from Wednesday when a cold front moved through… it was downright chilly when we went out to check the garden after dinner Wednesday evening.  Brrrr  I’m not ready for it to get that chilly … cooler yes.  But I know what follows … and I’m never, ever ready for the cold of winter. 

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that will bring some joy!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

For Sale

UPDATED: all fabric has been claimed

I decided to get back into my sewing room and finish up the reorganization.  I always like to come home from a trip to a nice, tidy house.  This house was never going to be nice or tidy with that sewing room in disarray.  So … time to tackle it.

As I went through my fabrics, I came across fabrics that I won’t use … some are good-sized pieces leftover from an old project and some are fabrics that I’ve purchased but have fallen out of love with.  I don’t know anyone locally well enough to offer to them.  I could offer them at my quilt guild, but we will be in Hilton Head so I’ll miss the September meeting.  I’d prefer to clean out this fabric sooner rather than later, so I’m going to offer it up here.  If there’s anything left, I’ll take it to the October meeting. 

I’m going to offer these fabrics on a first-come/first-served basis.  I just want to find a new home for these fabrics so all I’m asking is the price of postage to mail it out.  I will do my very best to find the most economical method of shipping, and I’ll be happy to provide a receipt to confirm the amount I’m requesting.  I’ll accept checks or PayPal payments.  I will ship out of the US.

Some of the fabrics might be up to 10-12 years old … I have no way of knowing when or where I bought any of these.  I’m providing manufacturer/line/pattern number when I have it; in those cases, I’ll try to include an online picture because it’s very overcast here today, and I fear that the colors may not come through accurately.  If anyone has any questions about the fabrics, I’ll do my best to answer. 

Ok, let’s get to the fabrics.  First up is an ivory floral/viney tone on tone fat quarter.  Unfortunately this one doesn’t have any information on the selvage. IMG_1959

I have a 42"x48" piece of a white tone on tone in a bubble design.  It’s from P&B Textiles. IMG_1964Unfortunately tones on tone don’t always photograph well, and this one was especially bad.  I found, on an older blog post, a photo taken under better lighting conditions … I used this fabric in my WIP Storm at Sea.

I have 2 pieces of a natural muslin, 1 piece is just a couple inches shy of 3 yards and the other is 1 yard. IMG_1965

I have a little over 5 yards of a natural linen-weave look fabric.  IMG_1966-001

I have two Fat Quarters from the same Windham line; while I took the picture of them together, I’m selling them individually or in the pair. IMG_1967
IMG_1970 One is a rose and the other is a red.  There seems to be enough information provided on the selvage for me to believe that these are from the Rebecca by Mary Koval line.  Here’s an online picture of the rose fabric.And here is an online source for the red.

I have 3 fat quarters from Windham; one has the manufacturer’s information on it.  Again, I’ll sell them separately or together.  IMG_1968
IMG_1969Here’s picture from an online source with more accurate color.

I have 1/2 yard of a chartreusey yellow with brown.  Unfortunately there’s not enough selvage information for me to get an online picture.  IMG_1971

I’m offering 1/2 yard of this blue floral.  IMG_1972

I have 4 yards of Moda’s Dogwood Trail commemorating the 20th anniversary of the National Quilt Museum.  IMG_1974

I have 3 yards of Kansas Troubles Wildflower Serenade II #9253.  Unfortunately the flash on my camera washed out the color.  It’s more of a rich almost burgundy color.  IMG_1975Here’s the best I can do as far as an online picture is concerned; I would say that it’s the last swatch in the 4th row down.  That is a more accurate color than my photograph.

I have 2 pieces of Sandy Gervais’ Tranquility – 1 piece that’s 2-2/3 yards and another 2 yard piece.  Again, my flash washed out the color a little ... in real life, it's more of a brick red/rust color, not orange.  I couldn't find a picture online; I found some other pieces from that line, but no brick/rust in this pattern.  Perhaps you will have better luck?IMG_1977

And I have one last piece of fabric that’s 24”x22”.  IMG_1978It’s not a big piece but might be perfect for your next scrappy quilt?

I have a lot of notions/tools that I no longer need/use and perhaps I’ll have another sale when we get back from Hilton Head.

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that will bring some joy!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Tuesday’s Trivialities

Having a “day off” yesterday with absolutely nothing that I had to do felt downright decadent … and second “day off” today?  I’m feeling spoiled.  ha! 

I finally was able to pick up my Kiss quilt and get in some quilting.  Because I’m working on the outer edges of the quilt and because it’s a large quilt (96”x112”), it almost feels like I’m not making much progress.  But I moved my hoop 3-4 times yesterday, so there’s some progress being made, even if it doesn’t look like it.  IMG_1957

I got a heads up yesterday from my bloggy friend Kathi (who blogs at Design Originals by KC) that Brooklyn Fabric Company was having a fabulous sale on Civil War repro fat quarters … that’s just over $1.50/fat quarter … and from well-known designers, so it should all be good quality fabric … AND free shipping!!  Needless to say, I placed my order immediately!  And I got an email notification this morning that my order has shipped.  Wooo hooo!  Fat Quarter SaleI’ve no affiliation with them (never heard of them before), but this is a fabulous deal for any of you who love using Civil War fabrics … I thought I’d share.  There’s still a couple of days left on the offer (unless they’ve sold out), so if you’re interested, check it out.

I even did a few overdue “chores” around the house.  It felt good to be able to take my time, knowing that I didn’t have to get the entire house cleaned in one day.  I’d also fallen behind on my “reading” … since I listen to audiobooks, I chose not to do much “reading”/listening while with the Ts.  Yesterday morning, I finished up the book I’d been reading … The Invention of Wings.  I didn’t realize, until I’d finished it, that it was based on a true story.  I’m now “reading” Wish You Well … it’s quite a departure from Baldacci’s normal work, but I’m enjoying it … it’s reminiscent of To Kill a Mockingbird. 

DD made the Dean’s List for summer semester.  Given the summer she had (spending quite a lot of time in hospital, caring for her former step mom) and considering that it’s been 17 years since she has been in a classroom, that was quite an accomplishment.  Her fall semester starts next week, and she’s looking forward to a less hectic semester.  She was able to schedule her classes so that other than a study day, I won’t be need to be on Nana duty for this semester. 

We are now just over 3 weeks from heading to our Happy Place.  I never ever grow tired of this view:IMG_0854-002

I had another visit last night from my “pal” Insomnia.  I got up and basted a few more hexies.  Even with sleeping in this morning, I didn’t get anywhere close to enough sleep.  Thankfully other than a Guild board meeting tonight, there’s nothing pressing on my schedule for today … just quilting and/or basting hexies. 

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that will bring some joy!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Catching Up

That wasn’t a very long hiatus, was it?  DD’s step mom passed away this morning.  While those she left behind are sad and will miss her tremendously, we all know that she is now free from pain and worshipping at the foot of the Throne.  While I expect that I’ll still be pretty busy for the next week or so, I won’t be nearly as busy as I had been and will hopefully be able to resume a somewhat regular blogging schedule.  Let’s catch up, shall we?

Since my last “real” post, we attended the Ts’ summer swim team awards banquet.  I’ve already mentioned that T#2 didn’t have a great summer swim this year, thanks to her broken arm.  But the boys certainly had a great season and brought home the hardware to prove it.  Google Drive3Papa and I are so proud of them.

Our neighbors have seen raccoons wandering around our subdivision from time to time … it looks like they’ve decided that they like to lounge out on our deck, perhaps napping on our deck chairs?  See these little paw prints on the base of the chair (ignore the dust … with construction across the street, it’s a little dusty in our neck of the woods – ha!).  IMG_3923 (1)

I haven’t had time to do any quilting so my Kiss quilt sits neglected.  Before my hiatus, I’d gotten all but the outermost 2” quilted on 2 of the 4 sides, and I’d made some progress on side #3.  Once I get all 4 sides quilted to within that final 2”, I’ll get out my border hoop and finish the outer edges.  I suppose that there’s light at the end of the tunnel, but it’s going to be a while before I’ll be able to tell whether it’s daylight or a train bearing down on me.  ha! 

I did however have time to work on my hexies … if you recall, I discovered that I didn’t have enough fabric to make all the necessary connector hexies for my Martha Washington’s Flower Garden.  I bought replacement fabric on our trip to Homestead Hearth a couple of weeks ago … and cut 600+ 2.5” squares a week ago Saturday.  I took my EPP travel case with me to DD’s and was able to baste a few hexies … I also basted a few when I got home in the evening.  Even with just doing a few here and there, I have 145 basted.  If I can keep up that pace, I should have them finished before we return from Hilton Head next month.  I might even begin to add them to my blocks (note to self: be sure to pack the MWFG blocks to take with to HHI).  IMG_1937

T#2 lost a molar last week while DD was at the hospital … thankfully she’s known for quite some time just who the Tooth Fairy is, so she didn’t have to worry if the Tooth Fairy had forgotten her.  IMG_3961

I’m participating in a Block of the Month (BOM) hosted by the Facebook quilting group I belong to.  My plan is to use reds, blues and a constant neutral.  I’m worried that I may not have enough of the neutral, especially since my July and August blocks involved applique … which means I’ll be using larger pieces of the background than I would with a pieced block.  Thankfully the neutral I’m using is still available.  Last Saturday, I cut more fabric for my EPP bow ties … I’m concerned that I might not have enough of the neutral since that project is turning out to be larger than originally planned.  It, too, is still available.  I ordered a fair amount of both, figuring that what doesn’t get used will be added to stash (since I love both pieces).  In fact, I’m thinking about ordering more of the primitive muslin.  It’s such a pretty color, and I like how it reads as a solid but has enough mottling to keep it from being so flat like true solids are.  The color is slightly off (as usual! Confused smile) in the photo … they’re both just a little darker, just a little more tan than they photographed.  Don’t you love the bow on the striped Kim Diehl fabric?  I’m such a sucker for presentation!  ha!  IMG_1938

Speaking of the BOM hosted by my Facebook quilting group, this month’s block is the Orange Peel.  I’d always wanted to try that block … being a beginner at applique, I thought it might make an easy beginning project.  I started with the freezer paper and starch method … I took a class on needle turn applique 3-4 years ago and I never was able to master that technique … I couldn’t seem to handle the applique piece, the background and turn with my needle all at the same time.  I thought I might have better luck with a method which had the seam allowances already turned under, so all I had to do was stitch down the applique piece.  Alas, that method was an epic fail.  Surprised smile  I then tried the method I learned at a class I took a couple of years ago … where I place the freezer paper waxed side up on the back of the fabric and with my iron, press the seam allowance to the freezer paper.  Thankfully that method worked!  Whew!  My piece certainly does bear witness to the fact that I’m an applique newbie, but it’s done … and that’s good enough for me.  I’m not sure that I’ll ever be a fan of applique, but I’ll give it one more try when I start my Kim Diehl Carolina Lily (I have the kit).  

I wish I could report that I finished up the stash reorganization that I started a week and a half ago, but I’ve chosen to stitch in the little bit of free time that I’ve had.  Thankfully I’m the only one who’s needed to get in/out of that room, so the state of squalor in there has been ignored.  I really do need to finish that up, so maybe I’ll make a point to spend a day in the next week or two finishing up.      

I hope that whatever you have planned for today includes a little something that will bring some joy!