Saturday, December 4, 2021

I Have a Finish! Meet Hope!

I've been working diligently on Hope. Hope is the quilt I started during an all-day, live quilt-a-long with Gudrun Erla of GEDesigns. If you remember this project from the summer of 2020 (I think), I worked on it with my sister. We shared our progress with each other over the phone as she was sewing along at her own home.

Sometime last year I pin basted Hope. Then at the beginning of this year, I put her on my 2021 UFO Challenge & my PHD2021 lists. Her number didn't come up until finally for December at the UFO Challenge. In the meantime, I'd needed the basting pins for other quilt tops so I tried out some water-soluble thread from Wonderfil, I used it to thread baste Hope, using the longest stitch possible on my sewing machine and my walking foot. It wasn't easy. The thread broke several times along the way. I'm sure it was operator error but I did manage to get that part finished eventually.

Jump ahead to November 2021 and time to start quilting her up. After all, it is due December 14th at UFO Club. I'm happy to say that the thread basting worked beautifully!

All the triangles got a fun flower quilted on them. I used a variegated green on the predominantly green triangles and a pink-ish, coral thread on the pink/coral triangles. A variegated gray was used on the predominantly dark triangles and there was gray serpentine quilting in the dark sashing (?) strips and along the outer borders.


After squaring up the approximately 60" x 80" quilt and sewing the 300" of binding on, I spent the last few days sewing the binding down by hand. When completed, I crossed my fingers as I threw the quilt into the washing machine, hoping that the water-soluble thread would indeed be gone and the quilt would come out of the dryer still in tact and beautifully fluffy. Ta! Da! Hope is complete!

Here are a few close-ups.


A picture of the entire back. I had plenty of the fabric left over so I used wide swaths on the back. I believe it was from a line called Urban Pets. You will notice dogs & cats on the different fabrics. Along the outer edges I used some wonderful Bee fabric with positive thoughts. Bee Positive. Bee Kind. Bee Respectful. Bee-lieve in Yourself. Get it? I love this fabric!

And here are a few last parting shots of Hope.




I hope you enjoyed Hope's debut. I believe Hope will be gifted to a young lady that I know who helps take in foster dogs and has even been known to have a few jobs pooper-scooping yards for working families. Since this is a lap quilt, I hope she enjoys many happy hours snuggled under it while reading books and playing on her electronic devices.

Even though this isn't a scrap quilt, I'll be sharing with Angela & Rainbow Scrappy Challenge friends at So Scrappy. I know they'll be thrilled to see I've finally got a finish to share. Ha!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Last 2021 FNwF

Yesterday was Friday Night with Friends night and I made sure I could be happily stitching with my global friends. I would like to thank Cheryll @Gone Stitchin' for getting out the reminders and organizing us each & every  month. It's the perfect excuse to HAVE TO sew in the evenings and possibly get something done! Click on the link above and see what all the friends have worked on.

As for me, I started off the Australian evening (afternoon here in USA) with the opportunity to prepare my Christmas mini pillows. I did most of the wool applique while at my last Kinderhook retreat. Besides finishing up the applique, I also did all the embroidery during free time at home. Yesterday I found a suitable backing fabric ...

and next applied some fusible interfacing to both the backs of the embroideries and the backing fabrics.

Then last night I sewed around all six pillows, clipped the corners, turned them right-side out, and finally gave them a good pressing. I'll stuff them Saturday and sew the openings closed while Mom is here this weekend. Aren't they so cute??!!

I still had time on my hands while watching one of my favorite TV shows, Blue Bloods. So happy I'd earlier also prepared this little bit.


I managed to get all the whip stitching done on this little Santa Tree. It'll be a Christmas ornament which I'll work really hard on to finish up this weekend as well as the Christmas pillows.

I hope you had an enjoyable Friday evening. There's nothing like spending it virtually with friends. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, December 2, 2021

I Like Thursday #57

 One week after Thanksgiving and I'm still smacking my lips. I like turkey, dressing, jalapeno cranberry relish, and broccoli. I also like to celebrate fancy dinners with candles on the table.

I also like Bonnie Hunter's annual mystery quilt. This year she is calling the quilt Rhododendron Trail and the first clue dropped last Friday. The next clues will appear each Friday right through the holidays, finishing up usually towards the end of January. I added her button & link on my right sidebar so click there if you're interested.

Our weather turned very enjoyable right after Thanksgiving and folks in the neighborhood have started dressing up their yards for Christmas. I especially like this ginormous snowman!

My son got his Christmas decorations up over the holiday weekend too. I'm sure Brody likes it!
Holidays are always a good time to catch up with far-away-family. My niece called to wish us all a Happy Thanksgiving and shared the new member of her family. Meet Mac!

I'll bet Gracie would love to meet Mac!

I'm joining LeeAnna and friends at Not Afraid of Color, sharing things that we've liked over the past week. It's always an uplifting experience. Check it out and see for yourself! In the meantime, I hope you've had a great week!

Thursday, November 25, 2021

I Like Thurs #56 & Happy Thanksgiving!

How appropriate that our I Like Thurs posts land on Thanksgiving Day today. I will keep this short and sweet today because I hope that all my American friends are focused on everything that they are thankful for today. I will say of course that I am thankful for my family and friends everywhere that see me in the best of times and also the worst of times.

So for my Likes this week: 

I like warm kitties on laps on cold mornings.

I like quilting/ Quilts keep me warm, inspired, and my creative juices flowing. I really like it when I can see the light at the end of the tunnel on a project!

I like reading good books. "Troubled Blood" is keeping up with the other Cormoran Strike books. This one is the 5th in the series and it started right up. Love that Robert Galbraith (aka J. K Rowling) is writing for us big kids too! 

I like that my cousin always remembers to send me an anniversary card. Best cousin ever!

I wish you ALL a fabulous week. Don't forget to notice all the things we have to be thankful for. Not just today, but every day! Happy Thanksgiving. Gobble! Gobble!


Linking up with LeeAnna and all my likable cyber friends HERE!

Saturday, November 20, 2021

FNSI & a little RSC?

Happy Saturday before Thanksgiving. This time next week we'll be full of turkey sandwiches & stuffing. I hope all your plans are in place. This year the holiday falls right square on our 43rd anniversary and, yes, I'll still be cooking. After 43 years (and this coincidence has happened before already) I'm kind of used to it. I must confess that I did look into going out or picking up a pre-cooked meal at the grocery store but it didn't seem right. So next Thursday you'll find me in the kitchen cooking for Mom & Fred as usual and I'm pretty OK with that.

Last night was Friday Night Sew-In and I managed to get some time to myself. Yay! I knew what I wanted to get done so I got my fabric together.

I found the red snowflake fabric in my stash. Hope I didn't have different plans for it. Too late now! The adorable snowman fabric was a piece I picked up at Pineapple Fabrics when I met Joy @ The Joyful Quilter. I'll always think of her now when I see this fabric.
Fabric was cut and sewn together. Just needs the back handsewn down. Perfect timing because Friday is a good night for TV around here. First comes Magnum PI followed by Blue Bloods. So I stitched ... mostly on commercials! And finished! 
Ready for the back of my toilet after Thanksgiving, of course.

There was time for a little more handwork so I got out some cross stitch. The pattern is Gentle Words by La-D-Da. It started the evening like this ...

and progressed to this. Doesn't look like a whole lot but we cross stitchers know that  it's a slow process.

So that was my Friday night. A little of this, a little of that. Mostly just happily doing what I like!

Thank you to Wendy @ Sugarlane Designs for hosting FNSI. I'm linking up & sharing there with my friends. You should go too if only to see her new grandson Ryker. He's a cutie!

I'm also linking up with Angela @ So Scappy to share and see what my RSC friends have been up to as well.

Have a good weekend!

Friday, November 19, 2021

I Like Thurs/Fri #56

Guess I'm a little behind. I feel like the days continue to pass without much happening, quilt-wise or otherwise. Maybe I'm still trying to wrap my head around the time change? Whatever the reason, I have LeeAnna and other grateful bloggers to thank for uplifting posts. Join us HERE to find happy thoughts.

This past week our weather has fluctuated between highs in the 70s to 40s. On one of the colder days, I made chili. Mom & I added green onions and cheese. Unfortunately, what I thought was my son's delicious smoked cheddarjack was smoked horseradish cheddar! Yes, there was a little heat in the bowl! Ha! It was good but I had a leftover bowl to which I added the correct cheese. Even better!!


Last month Carole from My Carolina Home hosted her annual Autumn Jubilee. You can find the details on the button on my sidebar. I like how every year she puts together several projects to celebrate Fall.  A quilted project is always included and I finally got my top done. It's not quilted yet. I plan on getting it 100% finished for next year. In the meantime, it'll hang as is until we get the house ready for Christmas.
I've mentioned before how much I like my guild Hearts 'n' Hands. We are a very active group and the past couple of years I've been very grateful for that. This is my November BOM, the 5th of nine. I'm using mostly scraps of lime green and dark blues. We've been using 16 HSTs for each block using different settings. It's been fun so far.
I know I post a lot about Gracie because I really enjoy my morning walks with our dog. However, there is another member of our family that doesn't get enough attention. This is Polly, our kitty. I was surprised when I took her to the vet for her annual check-up to discover that she is 8 and a half years old and weighs in at nine pounds. We had her a couple of years before getting Gracie and she took to the new puppy in the house very well. I can report that Polly has never made Gracie bleed even though Gracie sniffs her in obscene places and nips at her back legs for attention. Polly is very patient as well as photogenic.
I did finish the book I was reading by Harlan Coben, "Fool Me Once". It was a very good read. Lots of twists and turns ... all the way to the end. Harlan did it again with this book.
I just checked with my library and discovered that "Troubled Blood" by Robert Galbraith is available. I plan on running down and checking it out today. It is the 5th book in the Cormoran Strike series and you can read about it HERE. In case you aren't familiar with Galbraith, that is a pseudonym for J. K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame. Whereas Harry Potter was written for young adults, the Cormoran Strike series is for adults. I've loved the first 4 and figure I'll like the 5th as well. I understand that there is a 6th one due to come out soon. The author has promised that there will seven books in this series, just like the Harry Potter series!
If you've lasted this long, I'd also like to recommend "Red Notice", a movie on Netflix. It features Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Ryan Reynolds, who was hilarious! There's plenty of action in this film and, mixed with the humor, makes this a fun movie. Highly recommend! Read about it HERE.

I think that ought to do it for this week. Hopefully I'll my mojo will return and I'll be right on time next week!
 

Thursday, November 11, 2021

I Like Thursday #55

Hi and welcome back to this week's I Like Thursday post. LeeAnna hosts this gathering at Not Afraid of Color where we like to share anything & everything good each week. Please join us!

My walks lately have been interesting. I think it's because the weather has been trying to accustom us to Winter. Early this past week we were very cold all of a sudden. I spotted this fellow across three lanes of traffic and into a farmer's field. Not a very good picture -- it was taken with my cell phone.

Here's a closer look. Mr. Wile E Coyote! If you were worried about Gracie, don't be. We were quite a distance away and Gracie was off scaring up bunnies & squirrels in the brush! Notice how frosted-over the ground is too. Brrrr! If I recall correctly, it was 28 degrees that morning as we left.
The next day as we were walking along, this cute little owl swooped down and back up into the tree. He had been looking the other way but I "tsk, tsk" like calling my kitty and he looked right at me. I've named him Hootie and we've spotted him a 2nd time now.

Yesterday we were in the 60's expecting rain & cold starting today. As a matter of fact, this weekend looks to be quite cold again! Anyway, I took advantage of the warm day by laying fertilizer at my house and then headed down to Mom's to do the same. I couldn't believe all the leaves her "little" red bud tree lost already! What a thick carpet of leaves!!

So after I raked and bagged up leaves for her Yard Waste Thursday pick-up, I got the fertilizer down. While in the backyard, look what I almost stepped on!
Look closely. Can you see him? How about now? He starts in the upper right-hand corner and his tail is clipped off in the lower left. He just laid there and at first I thought he was dead. But his head remained raised. I think he was cold enough to be quite sluggish. I left him undisturbed and wished him well eating any and all mice he could find!

I finished  the book "Later" by Stephen King. It was a different style book from him. They're categorizing it as a crime novel. I'd recommend it. You can read about it HERE.

Now I'm reading "Fool Me Once" by Harlan Corben. I've not been disappointed with any of his books and so far, so good with this one too. Read about it HERE.

On TV, we enjoyed the World Series. We liked that the Atlanta Braves won the Series especially since they had the All-Star Game taken away from this year for bogus reasons. Made it that much sweeter in our opinions.

We're also enjoying NCIS, NCIS Hawaii (mostly), Bull, and Survivor. Of course what seems to be on our house mostly is hockey since the St. Louis Blues's season has begun. They've gotten off to a really good start which makes it even more exciting to watch.

Don't forget to join the other I Like Thursday bloggers on the link in the beginning of this post. I hope you have a terrific week and also find many things to like!

Saturday, November 6, 2021

FNwF

Thank goodness for Friday Night with Friends and thanks to Cheryll for hosting all of us again last night. It gave me the perfect excuse to play with fabric on & off all day yesterday in between loads of bedding laundry and a little grocery shopping. 

The first thing I wanted to get done sewing-wise was my guild's block of the month. Here is this month's block.

I was wondering how the blocks were looking all together since this was the fourth one offered. I like it so far!

I was also wanting to make more progress on the Autumn Jubilee 2021 quilt. I managed to get the middle finished. Instead of scrappy points, I chose to keep them consistent. Last month I'd gotten together all the maple leaf blocks too but they weren't ready to get photographed. If you're interested, you can visit Carole @ From My Carolina Home where she keeps these posts up on her blog. She offers lots of projects every Fall there. This year was a wool needle keep, a purse, embroidered little bags/pillows, and a quilted table topper. You can find the link is HERE.

In the evening I squeezed in a little knitting. Caramel Sauce Sock #2 is coming right along. It won't be long until this one is done too!

See how much fun FNwF is? Great motivation (excuse!) for spending your Friday sewing or knitting or crafting of some sort. Then we share over at Gone Stitchin'. I'm not making it up ... check it out HERE!

I'll also be linking up with Angela at So Scrappy because I haven't touched base with my fellow Rainbow Scrap Challengers in a LONG WHILE!

Have a great weekend. Here in most of the United States, we'll be enjoying an extra hour while losing Daylight Savings Time.

Thursday, November 4, 2021

I Like Thurs #54

Slowly but surely I'm getting back on track again with my blog. I've not been online in quite a while due to retreat followed by a two week vacation. That is going to be my I Like Thursday focus. Sit back and I hope you enjoy the ride.

Obviously my first like would most definitely have to be retreats. There is nothing so fun as spending good times with quilty friends. Being able to get away with them for several days is nothing less than stupendous! You can read all about my good time HERE where I shared lots of pictures of projects that were worked on during that time.

Another thing that I liked was that at retreat, for the first time ever, there was a husband that attended with us. I must admit that at first I was like "Whut?" But that initial feeling quickly left as he is a quilter and that was all that mattered. He had great insights, ideas, and completed his own quilt. Since he retired, he has really produced a lot of quilts. I was so glad that he came and it was all so good.

Many of you that know me know that my best friend in all the world is my Cleveland friend, Vickie. We have known each other since 1987 when we were next door neighbor's on military base housing in Hawaii. In the 34 years that we've known each other, our lives have changed, our kids have grown up, we've become grandmothers, and through it all we've been friends.

I like knowing that my niece is comfortable in her new job. She graduated from UNC-Wilmington a year early with a degree in finance. She is now working at a bank in a position that was extended for her specifically. They have a lot of confidence in her knowledge, skills, and dependability. She celebrated with the purchase of a brand new car. Isn't it a beauty?!?

While visiting in NC, I popped into a wonderful quilt store in Archdale. The store was Pineapple Quilts and just look at this cute pineapple quilt made from selvages.
I really like meeting quilting friends and this was also a wonderful opportunity for me to meet IN PERSON my blogging friend Joy @ Joyful Quilter. I feel like we had a lot more in common than just quilting. Thanks for taking the time to come down to Archdale to meet me, Joy!!

After our time in NC, we traveled up to MD/VA to see the kids. I like that my daughter Sarah knows what I like -- wineries! In spite of chilly weather, we took the opportunity to go to Fabbioli Cellars in Leesburg VA. The tasting room was all set up for Dia de los Muertos (aka Day of the Dead) and I got a quick picture of Mom & Sarah.
This was the ceiling in the tasting room. The mini lights made the ceiling look like a beautiful tree.
Mom, Sarah, and I walked through the garden (to clear our heads after our libations) where I took a picture looking back at the venue. Lo & behold! I spied a quilt block on the back side of the building! I really liked that!
One of the main reasons we go back to MD is to see our one and only grandson. He's almost 2-1/2 so we try to get out there to see him twice a year. Just look at that kid -- resting on his best friend, Gus. Ha!
We arrived in time to celebrate Brody's parents' 6th anniversary. They got a rare night out alone while we watched Brody for them. In the meantime, we found out that they will be giving us Grandson #2 in April! We all really liked that!!!
Gus enjoys sitting outside. Goofy dog. I loved hanging out with him.
Brody wanted to go outside so Grandpa helped him get his shoes on. I like this picture.
All of us went to a local farm that was celebrating Fall Days. Brody liked feeding the goats.
We all took a breather on the swing. Here are Sarah & Amanda swinging on one side.
And here are Mom & me on the other side. I like the colorful leaves behind us.
Couldn't pass up the opportunity to get Jared & Amanda to stick their heads in the holes to say, "Yee Haw!"
And what about Sarah hanging out the nose of a pumpkin? I liked it all!
When it was time to go, we all got to take a pumpkin home. Brody picked out an extra special one!
Sarah, Mom, & I posed with the MD pelican before leaving.
Back at home, my son is a wonderful cook. I really like his smoked meat loaf and he makes it just for me every time we visit. The leftovers make wonderful sandwiches for our trip back to IL.
It's always a sad day when we have to leave to go home. We did get to enjoy Mother Nature's Autumn Beauty as we drove home through VA and WV.

I like "playing with food" as much as my son. On this day I made tortillas filled with turkey, apples, and some of my son's smoked cheddar cheese. Mom really liked it too!
Even though we were with family for Jared & Amanda's anniversary, we did miss out staying for Halloween. Just take a look at this little Cutie Convict! What a riot!
We are back to reality again and, much as I like getting away, I also like getting home again. This was sunrise the other day on my walk with Gracie. Did I mention how much I like getting my dog out of the kennel and home again?
I hope you liked my past couple of weeks. I like sharing my "Likes" with you too!

Linking up with LeeAnna @ Not Afraid of Color. You can go HERE to see what joys others have shared!