Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tiny Tuesday - Album block

This week I skipped ahead to block number 95 so I could just cut and sew this one together. Other than not matching up my sides I like how it came out. Now if only I can prep a few more blocks to have in my hand work bag this week I'll be all set.

On the way home from picking up Aidan at school we tend to go looking for wild turkeys in our development. There are a lot of lots that have not been built on so there are plenty of wooded areas. Thinking we would not see any as we got close to our home I looked up and saw this one turkey on a lawn a few houses down from us. You just never know what you will see down here in Florida!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Sunday Sunday......

Today was a bit of a busy day. This afternoon Emmy had her dance recital and got to dance with her prince charming of a daddy. They both did a great job and quite a few tears were shed watching the little girls dance with their Daddy's.

We were lucky and both my MIL and FIL were able to come over and see the recital and my sister and niece attended as well. My sister is now headed to Orlando for the night and then a flight home tomorrow morning. I was so lucky to have S around to swim in the pool with the kids so her Mom and I could chat the last few days.

Tonight I plan to do a little sewing to catch up on the last week and then relax with some binding after the kids are in bed. Head on over to Kathy Quilts and see what other hand work is in progress today.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Saturday in green.....

It has been a week of no sewing for me but the good news is the sewing machine has been cleaned and the tension fixed. It is home and just waiting for me to get to work on sewing something.

I did get a few more of the grape peels done this month but I have a few more in the hand work bag to do. It's a good thing I have a few more days left in the month.

 That green nine patch and hourglass quilt got quilted and bound. I'm calling it a win. I'll finish the last side of the binding tonight.

This week my sister and my niece are down visiting. We met them at Sea World on Wednesday and a good time was had by all. Here is a picture of one of the turtles and a manatee.

Head on over to SoScrappy and see what other green projects have been worked on this month.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tiny Tuesday - #86 Grandmothers Brooch

This week I hand pieced #86 - Grandmothers Brooch from Sentimental Stitches. This little 4.5 inch finished block contains 28 pieces and ended up a wee bit small. I'll just frame it when I add it into the quilt top with all the other blocks. I must remember to iron as I go on these hand pieced projects.

This morning I dropped my machine off for cleaning and a tension fix. It should be ready on Thursday for pick up and that is the day my sister is arriving at my house for the weekend. It should be a relaxing time in the pool with lots of chatting and catching up with my sister and niece.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Slow Stitching Sunday....

After a short but busy day at work today I got to play with my Grammy's machine and put the binding onto my nine patch quilt. My 'normal' machine will be dropped off for service on Tuesday morning. I am unable to fix the tension on it and it could use a good cleaning anyway. Until then, I plan to do some hand work attaching this binding and a label onto this quilt.

Head on over to Kathy Quilts and see what other handwork is going on during this slow down Sunday.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Third Saturday in Green....

I finally got around to prepping some of my green grape peels this month. I had done about 6 of them earlier this year so have a head start on these.  I glued the first set down while waiting in the car line for Aidan on Friday and should have all of them appliqued down by next Saturday. They should piece up quickly in the evenings this next week while my sister and niece are down for a visit. I think I still need to cut out about 4 for a solid 20 peels this month.

I also made my 16 patch green square to go with my purple and orange one. I think I need to go back and make a pink one or the kids took it and it is somewhere in the play room waiting to be found.

As for quilting my green quilt..... it did not happen last Saturday. I did have that 'ah ha' moment while away earlier this week. I never changed the top thread and remembered I had King Tut in there and he always gives me trouble with quilting. I changed that to Masterpiece on Friday and was able to get this quilted up on Friday afternoon.

I still need to attach the binding but it was giving me fits again. I guess I will drop it off for cleaning in the next week. I just did straight line stitching with the walking foot in the nine patches.

I used the walking foot to make a gentle curve in the cream border.

Then I switched to my open toe foot and free motion quilted some stars and loops in the outer green border. That was practice for the QOV quilt I'll be quilting up next... when the machine comes back. Hopefully I can clean up the machine again later on Friday and attach the binding and label so I have some hand work to relax with on Sunday evening. I am working this weekend and with a big sale, it should be very busy during the day.

Head on over to SoScrappy on Saturday and see what others are working on in green this week.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Grandmothers Choice block - contrary husband.

Well, it would have been the contrary husband block if I had traced the lines for hand piecing on the back of the traced out purple batik. Oops. I was too lazy to go back and trace the lines on the other side when I realized it so I just went with it. This is my version of the contrary husband block. I think next week I need to pull them all out again for a group shot so I can see what colors I need a little more of.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Mid week Midget....

Since I don't have my grandmothers choice block prepped yet,  I figured I'd show my next Midget block that I just finished this morning. This is number 87 - Tempting Tulip free at sentimentalstitches.com website in the Midget blocks section. If only I had remembered to take a pink thread or my silks with me to my training and I would have had this one completed yesterday in the hotel.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Tiny Tuesday....

This week I made a hand pieced block. It is number 118 of the Midget Blocks from the Sentimental Stitches website and is called Star. This will finish at 4.5 inches.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Monday design wall.

Due to some technical difficulties on Saturday, I was unable to quilt up a top or two so instead I pulled out my Kaleidoscope parts and started playing with design layouts. This is the initial layout where I decided I wanted to keep the colors together with the triangle and kaleidoscope triangle. Those have  been sewn together and it is time to press and cut out the black background kaleidoscope triangles that will go in those beige spaces. This quilt has a June deadline as it will be a graduation gift for my niece Jillian. She chose bright blue, green and yellow with black as her colors.  I have a feeling I will be moving things around a little to spread out the colors a little more. So far 140 of them have been sewn together. I am working for a twin size quilt on this. The pattern I am using is from Don't call me Betsy's blog where she did  a Kaleidoscope quilt along last year. The instructions can be found here.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Slow down Sunday....

Instead of having binding ready to roll today, I have to settle for a bunch of hand pieced blocks that I prepped on Friday afternoon. I made one of these last night and am looking forward to making another one tonight. Nice and relaxing hand work after the kids are in bed.

Head on over Quilter Kathy and see what other hand work is going on today.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Saturday in green.

This week I was able to make my two snails trail blocks in green. I love how these blocks are coming out so far. I went with an olive green one and a dark green this week. There are so many shades of green it was a tough choice. Lime really wanted to play too but I had more of these in scraps.
 All of my snails so far this year - pink, purple, orange and green.

I also got another green and black 64 patch block made this week.

Today after dropping the kids off to Grandma I am going to be busy quilting that 9 patch and hourglass quilt! I have the brown binding all set to go on after it is quilted. After that is done... I'll either go through the box of scraps and pull greens out so I can prep my grape peels for this month or prep the backing and pin the Quilt of Valor quilt so I can try and get that one quilted today too. I decided stars and loops for that one. If the flowers and loops work well on the 9 patch I'll try and get this one quilted today too. I just love the border fabric I found for this. Isn't it great? I am using that blue fireworks fabric for the backing and binding too. I just love 50% off coupons from Joanns Fabrics. It was not the fabrics I had in mind when I went shopping but I think it was an even better choice than what I was thinking originally. I love when that happens.

Head on over to SoScrappy's blog and see what other green projects are being worked on today. 

Friday, April 12, 2013

Have you met Buddy and Strawberry?

This was originally going to be a 'Have you met Buddy' post but someone got a cow she named Strawberry for her birthday and it seems to have taken Buddy the dog's place. She now brings the cow everywhere with her. Yes, picture a cow in her dance shoe bag who is taken out and put on the table in the class to 'watch'. The first week Strawberry went the instructor actually asked where Buddy was!

I had these leftover HST's from making the Baby Bunting quilt. I put them into pinwheels and then decided to make a little quilt for Emmy's doggie. It will now go to Strawberry the cow as Buddy is using some Christmas place mats for his bed and covering while he sleeps on a pillow next to her.

I had marked some stars for hand quilting about a month or two ago and since I am out of hand quilting projects in my bag right now this came out of the sewing room. I got this done in two nights and love how it came out. I popped on the binding this morning and will hand stitch it down Thursday night.

I sure do hope Strawberry (and Buddy) likes it.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Prep Work.....

I have a backing made for the nine patch and hourglass quilt and the top and back are rolled onto the boards all set to get pinned. I plan to quilt this one up on Saturday. I just need to make the binding.

VtQuilter - Nine patch and Hourglass scrappy quilt.

I've also put this RWB quilt together up to the middle border. I think it needs one more border in blue. I have a solid blue in my stash but it keeps telling me it wants blue with white stars. I'll have to make a trip to the store to pick some up and a backing for this one. I'll try and get the same fabric I used to back Aidan's - his flag fabric. Any ideas on quilting this one? It is for a man so I can't do anything girly. I'm thinking of hand quilting stars in the 8 big white spots but other than that I am not sure how to machine quilt this one. It is 42x59 right now and I'll add a 5 inch blue border to make it a little bigger. Modeling in this picture is Buddy the dog and Strawberry the Cow. There will be another post on them later this week.

VtQuilter - Firecracker quilt for Matt

Then the kids woke up. Not bad for 1.5 hours of play time in my sewing room on Wednesday afternoon. I think we'll head to the farm stand and get some fresh corn on the cob for dinner.

Grandmothers Choice - Mr. Roosevelt's Necktie.

This week's block was very simple to make. I decided to make this one purple since I've had a few green's the last few weeks. I really like this block and think it would look really neat in my rainbow scrap challenge as a rainbow quilt or as a monochromatic quilt top. I would have laid them all out but I keep forgetting I need to applique that star onto the background. If you want to see how some of them are finishing, go check out the website today and see the four variations.

I did finish hand quilting this block on Sunday night. I am all out of prepped blocks from my Lori Smith patterns. I think it is time to pull them out and make a few more!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Tiny Tuesday - May Flower

 With all the hand pieced curves in this one it did not finish square for me but it is done. #75 - May Flower.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Slow Stitching Sunday....

Another week has passed and today is a great day to slow down and enjoy some peaceful hand stitching. We are also celebrating a birthday today - Emily turns four years old today.
I've been working a bit this week on my Lori Smith 12 inch block that I am hand quilting. I just have to finish the last border treatment. I think I am going to echo the 1/4 inch quilting around the inner border another time or two and then call this one done.

If I have time I need to finish prepping my midget block for this week. Those curves scare me but Ellen did hers last week so I am jumping in and getting it done. Hopefully it comes out ok.

Instead of sewing on Friday afternoon I was working on costumes for a dance recital. Lots of glue and time for it to set and all those ribbons are firmly attached to the bigger ribbon. They should stay put as they are pinned around the bottom of some little girl's pink crop pants for a 70's dance number. I can't wait to see this later this month.

Head on over to Kathy Quilts and see what other hand work is happening on this slow down Sunday. I'll leave you with this sky picture I took a few weeks ago on my way into work. It makes me think of hand quilting with the pattern and color changes in the sky.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

First Saturday in Green.

I am so happy GREEN was selected for this months color. I seem to have a lot of green so this will be a great month of playtime for me.

I had most of these four patches made so it was easy to make my first 64 patch block this month. I have eight of these made so far and I think I will hand quilt them up as blocks and then practice a quilt as you go with them to make a small quilt top. That will get me ready to QAYG on my Lori Smith quilt blocks I started working on last year. 

I also have a couple of quilt tops that have a bunch of green in them that would love to get quilted this month. We'll see if that happens or not. 

This one is the nine patch with green/cream hourglass blocks from my UFO list on the side - I hope to get this one quilted this month and would love to get the Easy Street quilt top finished (with a green outer border) and quilted this month too. I have the inner border cut out and the outer border fabric is being shipped to me very soon. 

Head on over to SoScrappy and see what others are working on in green this weekend.

Friday, April 5, 2013

A new project.....

The Internet was down yesterday until late last night. Instead of browsing blog sites (or cleaning like I should have done) I decided to sew. There was an Eleanor Burns Quilt in a Day program that I saved off a while ago with a quilt I really liked. It is called Firecracker and was really pretty in red, white and blue. I played the program again and shopped my stash for some fabrics. Then I cut my strips 2.5x6.5 for the red, white and blue. The corner triangles are from a 5.5 inch square cut on the diagonal. I was able to make these 24 blocks yesterday. They need trimming up and then I can sew them into a top. I'm thinking some plain borders around it and it will be a completed lap quilt top sometime soon. This has a potential home for an injured solider that I heard about on Wednesday - my step FIL's grandson. Hopefully he is doing OK and is in route to Germany and then can make the trip home. I'd recommend this if you need a quick quilt. I have a feeling I'll make another one for picnics out on the lawn for the kids.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Grandmothers Choice - Tinted Chains

This week's block is called Tinted Chains. I think the hardest part of this was to decide where to put the colors. Since I had different colors for the four middle parts I figured out that you can use the flying geese ruler with a 2.5 inch strip to make the middle side triangles. This is my final result.

The kids were playing Tuesday night with some blocks and this is what they came up with. They have some of my 64 patch blocks, snails trails and Grandmother's Choice blocks.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Mom's Lasagna

I had the chance to make Mom's Lasagna last week while she and my Dad were visiting. It served us for two meals and not a slice went into the freezer, it was that good. We enjoyed fresh made french bread with it right out of the oven and with a little salad on the side it was a great meal. I had assumed this was a recipe from my Grandmother but Mom asked if I remembered a cousin of hers that died recently. He was a cook at a restaurant and this recipe is actually from him. So, here is Llyod Touchette's Lasagna. Many thanks Lloyd for a wonderful recipe and lots of good family dinner memories.

2 Tbsp canola oil.
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pound ground beef
1 (1 pound) can tomato (I used a qt jar of canned)
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp basil (I use more)
1/2 tsp oregano (I use more)
2 tsp sugar
10 lasagna noodles cooked to directions
2 eggs
1 pound ricotta cheese
1/4 lb american cheese slices (6-8)
1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a skillet. Add onion and garlic and cook until done but not browned. Add beef and cook slowly. Add tomato, sauce and seasonings. Simmer uncovered 30 minutes or until thick but not dry.
Cook noodles and drain.
In a separate bowl, beat eggs and blend in ricotta cheese.

Grease a 9x13 inch pan. Add 1/2 meat sauce. Layer in 5 of the noodles. Add the ricotta cheese mixture and then top with the american cheese slices. Add the last 5 noodles on top. Top with the meat mixture and then sprinkle the parmesan cheese on top. Cover and bake in a 350 degree oven 35-40 minutes until golden brown and bubbly. This is even better the second day and freezes wonderfully.

Since I love pasta but it is a big carb no-no we have found that Dreamfields pasta has the lowest amount of digestible carbs at 5 g with the best flavor. In fact, you would not be able to tell the difference if you didn't know (we tried it out on my parents last September that way!). This allows me to still have pasta and not cook two separate meals when you have a spouse on the low carb Atkins type diet. It is readily available in Walmart and Publix down here in Florida so I assume it is in other stores too. No vested stake in the company, just a happy customer.

I'm hooking up with Connie over at Freemotion by the River for her linky Tuesday. Head on over and check it out.

Tiny Tuesday

I'm back on track this week with my midget blocks. These will finish at 4.5 inches and can be found for free over at sentimentalstitches.com in the free block section of the midgets.

This is #85 - Whirling Star. It is mostly paper pieced except for the four corners which I decided to hand sew that fun angle. This went together pretty easily once you mark which colors go where. I admit, it took me a few minutes to figure it out and it helps to start with the red color for marking! This one got put together Monday afternoon during naps. I swapped work days with G so I could see my parents off this morning. I'll go in Wednesday and do my month end paperwork and run the store.