Wednesday, December 31, 2008

More Happy Blocks! These are from a Debbie Mumm border print. I'm saving the border to add to these blocks done in two tones of brown. Nice way to use up the fabric I wasn't sure about.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

HAPPY BLOCKS! I started cutting the blocks for some happy blocks yesterday and this morning I sewed a few. There are only 15 centers for this batch of cute zoo animals and I'm not sure yet, how I'll set them as this isn't enough for a quilt, but maybe would be enough for a baby quilt. We'll see. I've been sorting my fabrics and I don't have many I can use for centers for these. I finally cut some Laurel Burch butterflies that I've had for about 9 years. I wasn't sure how to use it. So I cut some 4 1/2 inch squares of which, I can use the centers for happy blocks and could even use the other centers for an Ohio Star pattern. Cutting is hard work for me because I have to stand and my knee starts to hurt and then before I really notice, it seems to lock up on me and then I spend some time on the couch with an ice pack. I get so into what I'm doing that sometimes I don't take care of my "old" body. *sigh*

I spent the better part of yesterday cutting fabric for my sister for her birthday. She just realized that she wants to start making quilts. She remembered that she had a sewing machine that a dear friend gave her and found out that it is a Singer Featherweight! JOY! JOY! So, since her birthday is coming up, I cut the pieces she would need to start a quilt that I think will be easy enough to start on! i surely hope so. The hours of piecing and visualizing is very therapeutic and hopefully she find the joy in having a bit of a hobby!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Ready for Christmas! Note to self: make new placements for Christmas next year--maybe with matching napkins and a matching runner.

Quite a change from the Christmas Card Chaos from yesterday!

Ohio Star for Joanie, a girl who is a senior in high school. Her family just had a house fire, and because of the location of the fire, she is the one who lost everything. This is being done through the Sunshine Quilt Yahoo Group to go into a quilt for her. Thanks Carol for the opportunity, I enjoyed doing the block. I've been doing so many strings that this was a pleasant change. See also http://giraffedream s.blogspot. com

Monday, December 22, 2008


Ignorance and Want- The Children of Manunkind

Symbolically representative of social injustice and poverty Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" successfully published on December 19, 1843 deals extensively with the miserable relationship between the two children, Ignorance and Want, introduced by the Spirit of Christmas Present, their cause and effect.

Written in the aftermath of the British governments change to its welfare system known as the `Poor Laws' which required welfare applicants work on treadmills (prison grind wheels) and workhouses (precursors of modern sweat shops) the `carol' is as stirringly relevant today as it was in the 19th Century.

From the foldings of its robe, the Spirit of Christmas Present brought two children; wretched, abject, frightful, hideous, miserable. They knelt down at its feet, and clung upon the outside of its garment. These wretched looking children; a boy Ignorance & girl Want, frighten Scrooge. Having them shown to him in this way, he tried to say they were fine children, but the words choked themselves, rather than be parties to a lie of such enormous magnitude. He inquires "Spirit! Are they yours?" "They are Man's" is the answer, the product of society's / Scrooge's greed, selfishness and callous attitude; that if the poor prefer to die than go to prisons & workhouses "they had better do it and decrease the surplus population." The ballad warns "Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased. Deny it!' cried the Spirit", underscoring the book's social message and society's "especially harmful" general ignorance still allows the rich to become richer while the poor starve, leading to "two alternatives: rebellion or poor relief."

Scrooge offends the Ghost of Christmas Present by suggesting that the Spirit's name is linked to a recent attempt to close bakers' shops on Sundays and Christmas Day. Poor people like the Cratchits, who had no oven at home, took their Sunday and Christmas meals to the bakers' to be roasted just as Dickens describes in the book, because the law forbade bread to be baked on that day.. Closing the shops would deprive them of what might be their only hot meat meal of the week. The Spirit of Christmas Present angrily retorts:

"There are some upon this earth of yours....who lay claim to know us, and who do their deed of passion, pride, ill-will, hatred, envy, bigotry and selfishness in our name, who are as strange to us and to all our kith and kin, as if they had never lived. Remember that, and charge their doings on themselves, not us." (The Ghost of Christmas Present, A Christmas Carol, Stave Three)

This is in part, a reference to the repeated attempts during the 1830s of Sir Andrew Agnew, Member of Parliament for Wigtownshire, to introduce a Sunday Observance Bill in Parliament which would have closed the bakeries and restricted many other Sunday pleasures of the poorer classes. Dickens was vociferously opposed to Agnew's plans and had attacked them in a pamphlet published under a pseudonym.

Scrooges / financiers / prosperous money changers devoted to the accumulation of wealth at the expense of others continue with modern business, resulting in the ongoing downtrodden indifference towards the world's symbolic Cratchits.

It seems no different today - Failure to do so, the writer implies through the personification of Ignorance and Want as these ghastly children, will result in an unnamed "Doom" for those who, like Scrooge, believe their wealth, education and status qualifies them to sit in judgment on the poor rather than to assist them.

Each year the story renews its timely importance- unfortunately, it is only remembered at a time of year when the mans name is given as part of the title whose story is fainly remembered for a holiday even as people brazenly continue to hide their doings and charge not themselves.. . The message the author sought to impart has been missed in ignorance and want just as easily as the man whose name the title represents- `Do to another as you would have them do to you' even if you were in their robes…

It is a purpose of the WUF for all the children of mankind to "Remember that, and charge their doings on themselves, not us."

May Ignorance and Want be put to bed where visions of Food, Clothing Shelter, Education and Good health all dance in their head and can live on in their heart.

As the sickly Tiny Tim Cratchit said, God bless us, everyone… which includes those who sign and those who don't sign the WUF Declaration… It is important to remember, Scrooge did Not die in the end nor did Tiny Tim. After all, are we not all in the caring robes of Christmas Present? (thanks to John Roh for this information)

I don't know how I do it, but I seem to thrive in chaos! This is a picture of my dining table filled with Christmas cards ready to mail and some yet to mail. Our trip last week to Phoenix really put a crimp in our Christmas preparations. I'm not one to save the cards I purchased and mail them next year. No, not me, I'll mail out a Merry Christmas greeting a little late and just keep smilin'. That way people wonder what I'm up to. And, maybe, just maybe my mess will be cleaned up. ....Then to some baking--one can only hope.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

66 Years ago my mother and father were wed in an army post in Glendale, AZ. Hardly a year goes by that I don't remember that anniversary as it brought the bonds that allowed me to enter this world. As I've grown and moved far away from the teachings I received as a youth, I've caused much turmoil to my dear mom. (My father passed in 1993). The picture at the right was taken several years ago at Mom's 80th birthday. My brother Steven is not included in the picture because of his passing in 1991. December has lots of dates of remembrance for me. I contemplate a lot during this month. I'm so glad for the experiences that have led me to be where I am now.

My only desire was to find the Truth and as I did that, I had to move away from the teachings that I was always taught were the truth. Each human being has within the ability to common sense and with that common sense find the balance that leads to true happiness. I've found mine and only hope that my dear mom, can some day find within herself to find the peace about my search.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Hooray! The split nine patch is now ready for binding. Quilter Bridget did one set of four and I did the rest. It looks so bright. I have one set of brights in the split now and I'm saving it until I get more brights to work with it. I couldn't wait to try our new camera and take some pictures of this and get them up.

Bright Blue Strings and such a bright backing. I'm always so excited when Judy comes with the quilts she's quilted. I had even forgotten I'd sent this one. I just love it. You can click on it and see the quilting that is done in blue. I'm going to bind it in red. Hopefully tomorrow.

What a bargain! I got some border fabric for 2.99 a yard and I bought 2 yards. I made enough strings for two quilts like this. This is the first one finished and ready to go to the quilter. The other still needs the border. I love the jewel tone colors and can hardly wait to get it completed.

Yellow Brick Road in Turquoise and Purple is ready to go to the Family Connections Center.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

A UFO is now finished. After several years sitting in a drawer, I completed this "snippet" picture by binding it. The process is really quite easy and the finished project now hangs in a hallway in my house.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Planned Strings! Recently I purchased at a really good sale, some border print and I cut it into strings. The blue was placed as the center and the pink/green as the corners. I am fulfilling my goal of 8 strings a day til Thanksgiving. These will go in the drawer with all the other strings for now. All the other strings were fabrics that were donated and super bright, so it will be fun to see how this all works.

Last night I finished binding for the Split Nine Patch and all is left is the label. Not too much going on in my quilty world right now.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Colorful Heartstrings are ready to be mailed to Tammy at Sunshine Yahoo Quilt Group for either WAS (wrap a smile) or WTIL (wrap them in love). It was for a lotto, but I already had this pieced and just added a border for her to have a ready made quilt top rather than just some blocks. Hope it works for her!

Monday, November 3, 2008

What a difference a color makes. This is the crumb quilt strippy with a change of color in between the crumbs. I love the green!

November 25, 2008 Quilted and bound!
UFO just about finished. I quilted this on Saturday
and now it's ready to bind and also bead. I want to have something to do when I take DMIL to the doctor or when I'm just relaxing and not wanting to think. Handwork creates a numbness in my hand that I've had to limit, but this one is just screaming for some ornamentation. I've got just the spot on the wall for this. This started as a kit, and I really changed up the way it's laid out--so it's quite representative of "me."

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Quilts ready for gifting. These quilts will go to Dr Jeffery, my chiropractor, to take to Mexico on their annual trip there to take supplies and things needed there. There is no way I can keep up with what may be needed, but I do fill my hours with something that I love and am blessed to be able to give at least something.

This bright quilt started as squares that I bought from E-bay. There were some squares to set them to, but somehow I misplaced them. So, I just set them with some other fabric. Judy quilted it and I've washed it now, ready to give. This will go to Mexico with Dr. Jeffery in December.

The quilter brought this by yesterday. I was so excited to get it as I really wanted to see it done. I've yet to bind it, but the quilt exceeded my expectations. It was started as a fund raiser for a now defunct yahoo chat group, and then after I gave back all the blocks to those who wanted them, I assembled two tops--this being the first to be quilted. This is actually the second one pieced and I added some blocks to the border to extend the size of the quilt. Judy quilted it and there is a set of four blocks by Mary N. in CA. The rest are my settings and blocks. Not sure where the quilt will go, yet...Maybe Mexico, maybe to the connections center. This I know, a need will come to my attention...

This picture can't describe the beautiful sunrise outside my house on Halloween. Actually the sky was more yellow than the photo shows, but it was so gorgeous that I ran back into the house to grab the camera so that I could snatch a picture.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Finally!!!! This is now bound and ready to be delivered. This has been one of those quilts that just seems like relief to have completed. The dark burgundy binding really ties it all together. It is a heavy throw or lap quilt.

Finished Crumbs! Now that it is bound, I can start the other one just like it and quilt and bind it.

This quilt is made from using 4 1/2 inch crumb blocks sewn into a strip of ten blocks. I then used a pattern from side panel and altered it a bit to make the quilt fit onto a 42" width of fabric. The blocks were tied and then I quilted along the black strips. This quilt worked up fairly fast. The only thing left to do now is the binding.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

These quilts are ready to go. The one on the left is a Christmas quilt that's been in the closet for awhile. It's now ready to go to the Family Connections Center in Layton. The quilts at the right are the ones going this trip around.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Back from the quilter this quilt is now ready to be bound. I just love the crispness of the blue and white.

Monday, October 13, 2008

September Mornings a quilt that reminds me of the September Mornings my sister and I spent just this past September. I've finished the binding and now for the label and then it will be ready to mail to my sis as a reminder of our sister bond.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

October Snow! This was the view from my back porch this morning. About 8 or 9 inches of snow fell during the night. It is supposed to clear out by midweek and be fall again. If this is winter, I don't want it to come.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

THERAPY???? Usually I use quilting as therapy. Sometimes however it is the opposite. As I was using samples my sister had given me, I got into a place where I just couldn't let go and let it be. I was trying to force something and I couldn't figure out what. So I ripped all the blocks apart and started over. Then I found what I thought was the perfect thing to put between the blocks. It was a huge scrap of velvet. Even with my quilting foot the velvet just smooshed beneath it. I couldn't pin it and make it turn out as perfect corners. I was about to throw it all out and then I realized that there is maybe some person who could use the warmth this would provide. I've got the back cut and I'll take it down to the city center and tie it and then how will I bind it??? Don't know yet, but I saved it from the trash. Hope that my potty mouth while sewing didn't spill onto the quilt:-)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Block Party!!! These blocks were for a weekend Block Party on Heartstrings. I wasn't going to do any, but got caught up in the fun of it and realized I had some lime green left from the quilt I finished Saturday. I found I had lots of scraps to put together for this and still have lots I can make into 6 1/2 inch blocks to use up the smaller pieces. Strings are so therapeutic for me. I simply cut the strings, and start sewing. If I keep a cup of coffee on hand, I can really get whizzing with my old machine. These are to be for boys and I hope the purple is okay. My DGS really liked purple when he was 5 through 8 or 9 and I made two quilts for him with lime green and purple and even bright pink. I think he still likes those colors and he's 12 now!!!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Wheee! My funk is over! I forced myself to get this quilt ready for the seniors to quilt. Actually there were only two of us that tied the quilt, but at least I got out of my doldrums and accomplished something with quilting this week!!! This will go to the Family Connections Center in Layton. Disappearing 9 Patch is the pattern and the butterflies are a Laurel Burch Fabric that I finally got the nerve to cut into...

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Boy am I in a quilting slump. I've got to get a quilt ready to tie at tomorrow's Senior Luncheon. It's a real challenge to get going when I want to do some other things right now.

NO KNEE PAIN! Boy I haven't had that for almost a year and a half. I've had treatments, massages, shoe inserts, physical therapy and a host of other things I've tried, but I think the combination of those things and the wearing of my EARTH SHOES has made a difference in my knees. Walking the whole day without pain. WOW!!!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Strings and things....These are some of the 9 1/2 inch blocks I've made from the samples Letha gave me. I put them together in a big block of four and just finished ripping them all apart. They were driving me nuts. Couldn't feel good about any setting I was doing. So, I looked in the big box for some fabric that I might use for the settings. FOUND IT!!!! Yea!! It's a soft green and seems to go with all the busy ness of the string blocks. It's a soft probably polyester velvet, so it will wash. The samples are varied weights of cotton in upholstery and drapery fabric. It will be a heavy bedspread type quilt. Now that I know what I'm going to do, maybe this unsettledness will leave and I can now work on cleaning up my house for the week!

Sewing progress??? Sometimes when making strings it seems as if the mess will never end. I'm currently working on taking apart some sample books my sis gave me and then making string blocks from them.

Retro nine patch is what I called this. Vi brought over some nine patches she'd started years ago. I purchased some fleece to back it with and the Syracuse Seniors tied it last month. I finally finished binding it and took it over to the Layton Family Connections Center Yesterday. It was one of four quilts I took.

This was the second southwest cheater I took to the Layton Family Connections Center. Mildred tied it and I bound it.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Some vacations are just magical and you never want them to end. This one was one of those. My mom and sis and I really had fun. We laughed and giggled like teenagers. My sis and I left Mom to her morning routine and we went for coffee at the local Maverik station in my blue PT Crusier convertible. There was a chill in the air and we had to wrap up a few mornings as there was a cold snap, but the love in our hearts warmed body and soul. Everyone should experience at least one of these weeks!

Roosters and Strings...This started out as strings from donation fabrics I'd received. There was a definite blue/white that when I sewed them together I remembered the rooster fabric as some of the upholstery fabric my sis gave me from a workroom in Vegas that she uses for her designs. It worked out well, but I didn't know how it would wash. I used a fleece for the back that had been donated to the Syracuse Seniors and one of the seniors, Mildred tied it. I bought some red fleece to bind it and voila a quilt is ready for the Layton Family Connection Center. I pre-washed it to see if it was all washable and it washed well. I'm quite attracted to this quilt. I tried it out before washing and it is plenty comfy!

Wouldn't you know it--the repair man is coming to fix our internet connection tomorrow. After 3 weeks of intermittent service, now it's working and I can upload pictures. This is a quilt I finished for our youngest son, Nate, who turned 31 today. This is a scrappy log cabin I started a few years ago from scraps of the quilts I've done. It looked so good when I finished, I thought I'd give it to him. If he doesn't want it, I'll use it myself. Actually he's in Moab for a river trip and will return home and make the big decision--a check or a quilt. Who knows he may pick a check! *smile*

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Just the label is left to do and this is ready for gifting. I tried some freehand swirls in the gold part. I love the safari back--it goes so well with this little boy's quilt. I've got more crumbs ready to put into a quilt. Have some ideas brewing of course and just not enough time in the day to get them all to the sewing machine.

This quilt has been folded in a closet and calling to me to get it done. I've been working on some other blocks and keep postponing doing this. Actually it looks quite nice on my bed, but alas I'll finish it soon, or call Judy and have her quilt it for me.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Couldn't sleep last Tuesday morning and took pictures of my wildflowers. Just a few short hours later, I learned of the death of my mom's husband of nine years.

John was a man who brought much happiness to my mom these past few years. As he was nearing the prospect of losing his memory more and more due to the meanness of the Alzheimer's disease, a heart attack, then another and then another finally took him from this life to the sweetness of living without his aged body. He was nearing 88 and walked in much pain as he tried to maintain the yard and his garden. Mom will surely miss him.

Crumbs...I've heard that they take on a life of their own. After my 4th of July celebration, I got started on some small pieces of fabric and they do get a life of their own. I had a small tub of small scraps and turned them into a small lap quilt top. I think the quilting will make all the difference in how it looks. I think the next time I'll make the strips in between a bit smaller than the width of the crumbs. The blocks were 4 1/2 inches and I sewed them together. The gold doesn't show up well in the photo. All in all when I get this done I think, with the flannel I have in mind for a backing--trucks and such that some young boy will find this quilt quite welcoming...Now to get it finished with all the other projects I have started and not completed.

Who are these "old" people having so much fun?? This is how I spent the 4th of July this a class reunion.
We were born in '45
We celebrated our 45th class reunion.
We graduated in '63
We are celebrating 63 years of living!
There were 63 of us at a celebration dinner!

Who are these "old" people having so much fun?? This is how I spent the 4th of July this a class reunion.
We were born in '45
We celebrated our 45th class reunion.
We graduated in '63
We are celebrating 63 years of living!
There were 63 of us at a celebration dinner!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

These quilts are being sent to a women's and children's homeless shelter in Kansas. The one on the right is from a Yellow Brick Road pattern and you can see that design in the teal and the purple. I ran out of the white and purple strings and didn't have any more fabric to make them so I added the pink strings I'd had on hand. The girl who received this really liked it. Actually the quilt looked better than the picture. In hind sight, I should have ripped the strings apart and placed them differently, but I was trying to make a deadline for some women displaced by the floods.