Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Tiny Tuesday...

Joanne asked how I was going to choose which of the 52 blocks to leave off from the 49 I plan to make. I'm skipping the hard ones..... so why did I do this one? I didn't think it would be as difficult as it turned out to be! This is a very dense one but it is DONE! That gives me 47 of these blocks completed. 46 have their yellow frame on. 2 more days in the year....  I have 'five berries' prepped and hope to get that one completed tonight. That leaves one more before the end of the year. I have those difficult 4 all traced...... maybe I'll just make my own for the last one?  A palm tree maybe? These are from the midget appliqué blocks from sentimental stitches.com

Saturday, December 26, 2015

The last RSC Saturday in 2015.

It is hard to believe another year of the RSC Challenge is coming to an end. It seems like just yesterday I started making my blue trip around the world blocks and now I have made 9 - all by hand with 2.5 inch squares this year. I hope to press the seams this week with my new iron and stitch them together.... with some new Roxanne needles. I can't wait to try them. I think I decided on dark corners (greens, red and blue) and teal in the middle.

I did finish something this year - the twinkle stars quilt! My only finish from this years blocks. My phone is thinking it is full so won't let me take a picture of the finished quilt. The binding is done, I promise!

I got 13 dresden plates made..... but they are waiting patiently to get appliquéd onto the background. I am going with a plain white background... I think. I have it purchased and folded with the plates, somewhere in my sewing room.

I got the 2015 sampler blocks completed but life prevented me from sewing them together this month. 

I added some birds in the air blocks (BITA) to a previous year's stash of blocks and made this beautiful quilt for a wedding present. Ok, I'm counting this one as a finish for the challenge as well. :)

I'll continue making 16 patches next year and the plan it still to make it into a Good night Irene once I decide what colors will go where so I can make the X alternate blocks.

I am still hand quilting this little number from a previous RSC year of appliqué orange peel blocks. I have 9 peels to go and I can turn the second corner on the last border. Progress. I will try and move this one along as I am trying to take it easy and get over this cold.... that I have had in various forms since the 13th. The 2 days in bed on the 23+24th were not fun but at least I am up and moving around now.....unfortunately I passed that one along to the hubby who is down for the count today and probably tomorrow.

I make notes during the year under my projects tab and for 2016 I have the following noted. Scrappy houses, Umbrella - make bigger than 4.5 inches, BITA and black surround for the hexagon flowers I made a few years ago. Bow tie blocks have always intrigued me but I have yet to really make any. I think I am going to let myself choose what I want to make each month this year.... along with making the row sampler Angela is designing from my scrap bin. I still have plenty of blocks from this year and years past that have yet to be completed into quilts. Maybe I'll concentrate on finishing up one of those per month this year? Time will tell.

Head on over and see what other plans are in store for the RSC Challenge 2016. I'm also linking up Sunday with Slow Stitching Sunday and Oh Scrap.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas stitching...

While watching movies today (Toy Story, Harry Potter) I got a Butterfly done!
One more Midget Appliqué block checked off the list.

Merry Christmas

I have the only kids in the world that dug into the presents to find the ones they made and handed those out first with one person opening them at a time! Took them a while to get to opening their presents, silly kids. Emily got her rescue helicopter, connects and a neat game called story cubes from Santa. Aidan got a brother sewing machine, a bike helmet and some story cubes from Santa.
I am feeling better today, thank goodness. Two full days of sleeping all day is not fun. We delayed Christmas with the in-laws for a couple of days. Gives me time to clean the house (being gone for 5 days and then sick for 2...) and prep for meals.
Emily is watching Christmas shows from the DVD Grammy and Grandpa sent down. Aidan is in his room listening to his CD player and Uncle Jim's CD. I think I'll grab a shower and then relax with some hand work.

Merry Christmas everyone.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015


I had two little kids at the airport on Monday to meet me... with their Dad. It was a long night but... we got home in time to watch the SpaceX launch from the driveway.... in our jammies.  No coats... just pajamas!
Tuesday was Christmas at Grandma's house.... delayed from Sunday since I was gone. We did not head to the Hommasassa Springs  for the lights as it was raining over there.
The kids got bean bags and their own portable CD player with ear buds.... and a special CD their great uncle Jim cut just for them of him playing some of their favorite songs on the guitar.

We got the kids home and into bed by 7:24. It was a late night the day before. Today... I had promised cookie decorating. I made the dough yesterday morning and cooked it off today - in between coughing. By the time the extra two kids left I had a splitting headache, and was dehydrated so into bed for me for the next 4 hours.

I am supervising a bath of the girl now so decided to make my post. I did a little hand work last night while watching a movie with Greg. I got this one finished and the yellow put onto three of the previous blocks. Of course... I found another one under my computer this morning that needs the yellow. I really should count and see how many I have left to make.


The girl is wrapping up her bath so it will be reading time and I guess I should make some soup for my dinner. The crackers hit the spot so I should have something else. Hard to believe tomorrow is Christmas Eve. I really need to asses and see what I have and if I need anything... other than groceries to host Christmas. That will be for tomorrow to deal with. I see wrapping (or supervising wrapping) in my future tonight.

Monday, December 21, 2015

I'm leaving on a jet plane....

Heading home to warm and sunny Florida today. We got great news this morning - Dad will be released from the hospital probably tomorrow to go HOME! He made an awesome recovery over the last few days and is up and walking and able to move everything. He will need some therapy for mobility on his left hand but his memory is sharp as a tack and he has been keeping the nurses hopping with his sense of humor. We got our Christmas wish and are extremely happy.

I have not touched my hand work at all.....maybe I'll get some stitching in on the planes today.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Weekend in Vermont....

I am up in Vermont with family this weekend while Greg and my MIL handle the kiddo's. My Dad had surgery on Wednesday and had a stroke during surgery and one later that night. He is doing much better yesterday and we are hopeful a good nights sleep will see even more improvement today.

I took that little bag I had prepared last Saturday with me but decided to watch tv on the plane, played with the phone in the airports and the stitching only came out a little bit yesterday in the ICU waiting room. It has been nice to visit with my siblings and see my parents.

No snow here....although there is a chance for flurries today. I think I'll get a little more stitching in today and finish up one of my midget appliqués. We are hopeful he will be moving to a step down or regular room today. I didn't reverse this when I traced it so it is backwards... but who is really going to know?

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Midget Applique Wednesday....

I spent some time prepping appliqué on Saturday while the kids were at Grandma's. I pulled one out yesterday while in the car line and got this Three Leaf Flower completed last night.

I believe that gives me 43 completed blocks. There are 52 in the series.... but for a 7x7 setting I only need 49 blocks. That means only 6 blocks to go!

Please send some prayers and good thoughts up today. My Dad is undergoing surgery this morning for a blocked artery in his neck. Fingers crossed all goes well and he has a speedy recovery. One of my sisters is up at the hospital with them (I called at 7:30 after dropping kids to school) and stayed overnight at the hotel with them -they live an hour away and December in VT - you never know the roads with temps. One brother was planning to head up after dropping his daughter to school. At least someone is there with Mom while Dad is in surgery.

I'm off to run a few errands and pick up some things for the kids xmas parties in their classrooms tomorrow and then heading in to help out in Aidan's classroom this morning after their specials. His class has been learning about a lot of different traditions around the world this time of the year. They learned about Kwanzaa yesterday and I believe today is Hanukkah and playing the dreidel game.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Hand quilting Sunday....

After a busy Saturday it was time to slow down and enjoy some slow stitching... which has flowed into this morning =)

We did breakfast with Santa yesterday at the church where the scouts meet. They have a great Santa and lots of fun things for the kids to do - decorate their pancakes and hot cocoa, crafts, visit Santa and they each got to choose a book this year! They both chose a Magic Tree House book  - a series they both love.

We then dropped them to Grandma's so they had time to go to the parade in her town and we had time  to exit before they closed down the streets. A little time at home selecting health and dental insurance before the deadline on the 15th. We then finally did our 'anniversary' date from back in September using a gift certificate to Outback in the early afternoon. A couple of hours of playing in the sewing room picking up and prepping some midget appliqué and then Grandma returned the monsters.... I mean kids. I settled in with a little hand quilting on my Hugs and Kisses and made a lot of good progress on the first side of the outer border last night and only have 4.5 peels left on the first side! About 45 minutes of hand quilting and I get to turn the corner! 

Linking up with Slow Stitching Sunday. Head on over and see what other projects are being relaxed with today.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

NOT Tiny Tuesday....

Instead of the tiny midget appliqué blocks....I concentrated on the teal hand pieced trip around the world block and I'm happy to say it is DONE!!!! That makes 9 for the year. All hand pieced 2.5 inch squares.

Now I just need to decide how the colors should lay out and then hand stitch them into a top. I changed the initial thought of hand quilting each block and will hand quilt the whole top. One of these day's I'll actually do a quilt as you go... but not with this one. Now the difficult decision... what order do I put these blocks in for the quilt?

Rainbow of colors?

Tried to put the lights in the 4 inners and dark in 4 corners.

Purple and teal swapped around? Maybe teal in the middle and blue in the bottom corner?
What are your thoughts? I'll mull it over for a day or two and then flip a coin! The blocks are appearing darker due to the morning inside photo's - it was 40 degrees out so no outside pics this morning.
Mom - I'm helping in Aidan's class today 10-12 and might do lunch with him after. Tomorrow morning first thing is Polar Express at School with Emily's class (I did Aidan's yesterday mid-morning). They board the 'train' and have their ticket punched, have the story read to them and then enjoy cocoa and a big sugar cookie. They are given a little package with a small candy cane and a jingle bell on a yarn necklace to take home. The kids can even wear their pajamas to school that day =).

A couple more options after my FB group chimed in asking for yellow and orange in the middle.

Linking to OhScrap.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Slow Stitching Sunday in December....

Kathy asks us how we 'cope' with all the added tasks this Christmas season. I have some things in my mind that I like to do with the kids and try to spread it out this month - make gingerbread houses from a kit, decorate sugar cookies, go out at night and see the lights (4 times already!), watch Polar Express.... I find it is the little things like this that the kids look forward to each year and ask to do. Everything else.... if it gets done, great but if not as long as we spend time together and make memories I figure it is a good December.

For me - I requested chili and cornbread tonight and after a few texts at work to find ingredients they made  what smells like a wonderful batch of meat and bean chili and cornbread for dinner tonight. Aidan and I picked more beans from the garden and checked on the peas which are starting to bud and make peas. The beets are looking like they can be picked soon as well! I'll have to work them into meals this week with the lettuce that is ready as well.

Tonight - I see some relaxing slow stitching as my hand quilting has not been touched all week (something about not liking what hubby was watching at night so I moved to the bedroom tv - without the ott light and my recliner). I hope to get 10-12 of my peels outlined inside and out on that last border tonight.

Not too shabby with this quilt all coming from the stash of scraps!

Earlier this morning I was working on adding this round to my teal trip block. It is waiting on a finish to join the other 8 - 30 inch blocks I have made this year. I will hand piece the 9 together and this will become the next hand quilting project once the above one is done.

I am slowly plugging away at both projects with the hopes that both are completed before Christmas. If not... no worries - there really are not hard and set deadlines as there is always another day to finish it.
Head on over and see what others are slow stitching today. Also visit Oh Scrap for some great ideas and she has a special write up about the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. Both of my projects are from the RSC Challenge - the trip around the world block is from this year and the orange peel quilt above called Hugs and Kisses is from a couple of years ago.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

RSC - trying to finish.....

I am working on the last of 9 trip around the world blocks. Each measures 30x30 inches. This last one is teal. Sorry for the bad shots - they were taken last night. I used 2.5 inch squares and added them in rounds for a continuous stitch up to the white round.
All squares cut out.

I was too lazy to lay all of them out again so grabbed this photo. The green block is finished and teal is nearly done. This will pop to work with me today - maybe I can add a round or two?
Trip Around the World blocks

Head on over to the Rainbow Scrap Challenge and see what other projects are coming together in December.
I was playing with the sampler quilt earlier this week. I have not started sewing the blocks together yet - maybe next week? You can read about it here and here.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Garden produce......

I survived the field trip. No stress as the group stayed together.. unlike LegoLand. It was a good time and they learned about the old Christmas traditions around the world and hand dipped some candles to take home. We got back to school a few minutes before release so I collected Aidan and took the kids home.

I popped out to the garden and there were lots of beans ready for picking. I cooked a few up on Sunday night but more where ready today. I have a huge pot full ready to cook for dinner. I also got some swiss chard picked. That bit of rosemary will go into the rosemary roasted potato, onion and pepper. I think that will all go well with the baked cod for dinner =)

Tomorrow I really need to go out and weed... and plant some more things. I think the lettuce will be ready next week, scallions/onions are happy and all four of the garlics have shoots up! I should try a beet and see how big those are - the tops are looking good so something is growing down there.

Girl Scout leader meeting tonight - cookie training! Yikes - next month we start taking orders. It will be  a busy January and February.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Tiny Tuesday...

Did you think I forgot? Just busy this morning running errands (two banks to deposit to for girl scouts), Walmart and then picked up my friend Deb for a Sam's Club run. Remind me to go alone next time... although Greg won't have to stand in the pantry with the door open saying 'there's no snack foods'. It will be easier to pack lunches as well - especially since Emily and I have a field trip tomorrow to The Barberville Pioneer Settlement. We were completely out of lunch snacks.... so the pantry is now stocked with fruit and veggie chews, animal cracker packets, cheese puff balls and granola bars. I also got some clementines.... so yummy, too bad my kids won't eat oranges.

I started this little shoe in the car line yesterday and finished it up last night while watching the Charlie Brown special ... well there is still a bow that should go on it but... I kinda like it plain so it may stay like this. Too bad the show was on so late -9PM on a school night so the kids were unable to watch.

The kids have done really good going to bed and getting up for school. No tantrums and no yelling at all (by me) ! It will be so nice to have Greg home again tonight though..... even if they go back to normal kid behavior. I've been bribing them with little car trips at night to see the Christmas lights =).
Better test out the new broom in the kitchen before heading out to pick up the kids from school. 

Oh - for those who love to read and have a kindle or nook I was on bookbub.com last night and loaded a bunch of new free books onto my kindle. You can customize to see what types of things you enjoy reading. Think I'll bring my kindle in the car with me today for car line.

Monday, November 30, 2015

2 posts in one day!

Progress! This is what I am thinking for the borders.... the corners are in thought process. I think I will just do a straight line to connect them to the corner.... that way I don't have to extend into another border. I think it will work.... now to find any purple and pinks of the hand dyed fabrics. I sure hope I have some more...... I have all the parts for the light blue, yellow, brown and red already sewn. Just need to cut more background but that will have to all wait for tomorrow. Must do a few things before picking up the kids.

Design wall Monday....

Lots of progress on my RSC Sampler - alternate blocks on Saturday. I only have 5 to go... and 3 to fix before I can start sewing them together =).

Emily was a trooper and did a great job ringing the bell for her Community Service with Girl Scouts on Saturday - 2 hours of ringing by my 6 year old with no complaints. She had fun and did a great job... and people were extremely generous =)

Someone in the house is very happy the tree is up and the Christmas tree skirt is down. This will be her spot (Maxie)  until the tree comes down. Sophie will watch the tree from her spot on the couch!

Linking up with Design Wall Monday over at Patchwork times.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Weekend post...

I have been enjoying a bunch of hand work the last few days.
I added a few rounds to the aqua trip block - mostly yesterday on the back porch while watching the kids with their play date. One little girl went home for a nap but her brother stayed to play for the afternoon. Lots of running around outside - trips on the playhouse as a boat (watch out for the whale!) and hikes through the back woods as settlers to the new world. Time to prep more squares for this - 28,24,20, etc down to 4 to finish this last block off. I do wonder if on this last one I'll actually remember not to sew on those corner white triangles? I've only remembered twice the whole year!

Last night I added another 1.5 hours of hand quilting on Hugs and Kisses and have the fist border completed. Now the challenge - hand quilting that last edge. I got the blue peel quilted inside and out and started the orange before I decided to stop for the night.

When I need a change of pace - I have a little binding to add onto the twinkle star quilt that I machine quilted earlier this week with a wiggle stitch. This little guy is 40x40.

For the sewing machine..... I plan to add a few alternate blocks and maybe start sewing my blocks into rows. I have most of my parts sewn together - just need to finish the red four patches and cut some more 4.5 inch squares. I kept forgetting to change one part of 4 blocks of Angela's pattern to help my last border to connect those chains. Must find the yellow and light blue fabric to cut a few more squares for four patches. Of course... those are the alternate blocks I have already sewn up!

Linking up Saturday with the RSC Challenge and Sunday morning with Slow Sunday Stitching.
Greg has taken the kids to Grandma's so I get a little time of quiet in the house. My Daisy's are ringing the bell as part of their community service today so I'll be checking in and making sure someone is there. We have 3 hours to fill in at the end - I had Em signed up for the last hour but will try and have her do 2 and I'll cover the other hour by myself with the cadet scout. Too bad I can't bring hand work with me =). Sunday..... Greg and I will toss a coin and see who gets to work the short day. I hope I win - as he'll get the kids and I'll work before he heads to Clearwater Sunday night for a couple of days of training (recertification of CPO - certified pool operator). I'll hit the recertification at the next training session usually in Feb/March time frame.
Our elf has learned what the kids want for Christmas this year and I'm sure he has reported that back to the big Boss. Emily wants a police rescue helicopter to round out her rescue team (fire trucks, ambulance, police cars). Aidan wants a blue sewing machine. So nice the kids only really ask for one thing from Santa instead of the big lists I've heard other kids ask for.
Ok - must go shower and dress so I can sew a bit before Greg gets home.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Black Friday... is decorating day

And boy are the kids gung ho for decorating for Christmas. They started at 8:30.... I really need more coffee. All my fall things - mostly my Partylite candles were put away by the kids... and then properly put into their boxes by me. Then they dragged out the Christmas boxes of decorations. To distract them - I said to go find the tree in Aidan's room and take that out. I gave myself a 1 hour reprieve while they decorate the tree before I have to start helping =) A big thanks to Daddy for stringing the lights so they could add the garland and then the ornaments. They are actually doing a good job this year - I don't think I'll need to redecorate the tree this year and spread out the ornaments!

Oh, the elf flew in this morning. I was sure he would get confused and head to Vermont since that is where he last saw the kids. He must have gotten Aidan's note that he was to come to our house this year. They found him right off this morning in the dining room.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving

Wishing everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving.  

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

No BH mystery for me this year.....

I have way too many things in process! Instead of working through the clues with everyone else in blog land over the next months, I will be working on getting some finishes.
My hope is to work through the following in December.

1.) Finish the last 10 midget appliqué blocks and get the yellow surround on them. I have fallen a little behind on these but would love to have the blocks competed by the end of the year.

2.) Finish the teal trip around the world block and hand sew all 9 blocks together. I decided to hand quilt it as a whole project rather than individual quilt as you go.... which means I need to ......

3.) Finish hand quilting on Hugs and Kisses and get it bound.

4.) Appliqué the 13  dresden plates onto the background and piece into a top.

5.) Finish the alternate blocks for the RSC Sampler quilt, assemble the top and get it quilted and bound by the end of the year.

I may not get them all done, (you know, life does tend to interfere with my quilting!) but at least I'll have made progress on them rather than starting something new. If I do pretty good on the list - my reward will be to finally make my Bittersweet Briar wall hanging that I have had sitting in a kit forever.... well since I saw Kim Diehl speak at my guilt up in Vermont before I moved to Florida. After that one is done- it will be paper piecing my storm at sea kit. That one has been waiting 8 years to get made.
There. I feel better now that I have the plan in my head down on paper. =)

Now to make some cloverleaf rolls and a pumpkin pudding for Thanksgiving. I just have to make the potato and gravy on Thursday as Greg is in charge of the turkey and stuffing this year. He saw an episode on America's Test Kitchen that revisited Turkey with Julia Child. I'll let you know how it came out!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Tiny Tuesday is a twinkle star almost finish....

I decided I needed a sewing reward this morning so I pinned, quilted and made a binding and attached it to this little guy. It is 40x40 and has a nice snuggly blue dot flannel on the back. Just needs to have the binding sewn down.... and I'll have a nice finish from my RSC2015 twinkle star blocks.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Design..... pantry?

Well, after a frustrating Saturday when I opened the Christmas boxes on the back porch and found lots of things crawling in there......it lead to some research. Turns out a bag of bird seed went bad and some pantry moths moved in......and since we have the cat door they migrated into the house. We had little moths that we could not figure out what they were or where they came from but they were mostly in the kitchen, in the pantry. Today instead of cleaning the house up for company Thursday I took everything out of the pantry and cleaned, cleaned, cleaned and vacuumed up the few little buggers that were left in the crevices where the wall and ceiling meet. Greg hit them with the vacuum the last couple of weeks and they are getting lots fewer but there is a life cycle and I want them gone. Most of the things in the pantry are sealed (love my glass jars and tupperware!) and were safe. A couple of things from Greg's Atkins days got hit and it was time to toss them anyway. Three bags of garbage later and lots of boxes into the recycle bin.

The good news..... I have a clean and reorganized pantry! Hopefully me moving things around in there doesn't drive me too nuts. I already realized I moved the baking things one shelf up.... which the kiddo's can not reach anymore. Might have to swap things so they can reach them again.

Now to add the last few things back in and I'm calling it a day. The rest of the kitchen and house will get cleaned tomorrow. So much for sewing.......

Now to finish prepping the crafts for girl scouts tonight and then I think I'm going to relax for a few minutes before starting dinner - Chicken marsala with rice and whatever veggie the kids select out of the freezer. I'll add a salad and dinner is done.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Slow Down Sunday..... with a touch of rain.

Kathy reminds us each week to slow down, relax and enjoy some slow stitching. I get to work a short day today at the store so I'll be sure to bring some stitching with me just in case..... rain tends to make for slow customer counts. I think the Aqua trip block will come with me and maybe a round or two will be added on today at work.

Tonight - lows in the 40's so I'll be snuggling under Hugs and Kisses and working to turn that third corner of the first border tonight.
Hugs and Kisses - third border almost done!

Emily decided to make a scarf this morning.
Mom - I think I'll finally pick some swiss chard tonight and have some with the calzones for dinner =). I added a scallion from the garden to my salad yesterday. Don't worry, I'll plant another row of chard and beets this week and next month so you can enjoy some in March when you come down =)