Monday, July 18, 2016

Checking In ...

While I have had a difficult time making myself sit down to the keyboard and create a post, I have been at work the last two weeks.

I finished 10 anti-ouch pouches to take to the guild meeting Wednesday.  That brings me to a total of 74 this year.

There have also been some stash enhancements here.  I’m getting ready for my next English paper piecing project.  I’ve long admired the cover quilt on this book by Edyta Sitar and have decided to do it primarily in French General fabrics (but maybe not the border).  I scored on a recent online auction and was able to get a jelly roll plus four yards of fabric for what I would have paid for the yardage alone.  I have some other French General cuts in my stash, so hopefully I have enough diversity and can begin with this soon.

I’m signed up for two guild workshops with Becky Goldsmith this week and have been pulling the supplies I will need to take.  The first one is on color.  Thursday we’ll have a six-hour session on applique.

I’ve also resumed working on dishcloths while watching the Tour de France with Bob.  It’s an easier project to work on if a dog decides to land in my lap.

When nothing but mindless machine work would satisfy me, I’ve worked on miniature bowtie units.

My goal is to finish appliqueing my red hexagon quilt to its borders before Wednesday’s workshops.  I’ll probably take it with me tomorrow when I join my Tuesday group.  We’ll see how far along I get working on it some tonight.  

Monday, July 4, 2016

A Flimsy

I finished adding borders to this bluebonnet applique piece this weekend.  It's nice to free up a project box.

For some reason I had trouble sizing the center to the pieced borders and had to resort to drawing a picture on graph paper.  In the end it did work out.

We're enjoying a quiet, at-home holiday weekend here.  This evening we will probably take the golf cart to one of the areas on the course where we can enjoy the city's fireworks.  

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Guild Day

Quilt Guild met today, a week later than usual this month so as not to coincide with Vacation Bible School where we meet.

I turned in 10 completed anti-ouch pouches I had made bringing my 2016 total to 64.  I also took a very big, very heavy dog bed which I was ever so glad to pass along.

On the home front I’m plugging along on the quilter trying to make progress on a UFO. 

I kind of like the way my practice/warm-up piece is looking.

Stitching continues on my strip sets for bordering another UFO.

For a few weeks I’ve been in something of a quilting slump, but now I feel like I may be coming out of it.  Mostly, I’m trying to stay productive inside where it’s cool.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Resurrecting a Project

I worked on my quilter until the bobbin ran out this afternoon and then decided to change gears and play with a different project.

This applique piece has languished much too long.  It’s time to add a pieced border so it can be completed.  When I finished the center’s applique, I hand washed it to remove the glue basting.  To my dismay, the blues ran badly and I was afraid all that work was wasted.  Fortunately, I was able to eventually get rid of the stains using color grabbers and Dawn.   By that time I was so burned out on the project, I set it aside.

Hopefully I’ve learned my lesson.  After pulling possible border fabrics, I prewashed them along with some other batiks. 

Here are the color grabbers from those washer loads.  Yikes!  If they were made of better fabric I could add them to the border.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Summer is Here!

Like so many other places, our weather has transitioned overnight from wet and coolish to blistering bright, humid and hot…prime time in this part of the world to stay indoors and work on quilts and quilt-related projects.

I’ve finally reached a pause point in my Guild Committee work to be able to once again turn my mind to other projects.   In the meantime, my brain-breaks consisted of making potholders for my gift basket stash and knitting dishcloths from the endless cone of cotton yarn I purchased at the library thrift store years ago.

The top two potholders were finished using Diane's technique which she posted here.  The bottom one has a binding remnant leftover from another project and is ready for the finishing hand work.

A Tuesday quilting friend is clearing out her sewing area as she prepares to become a full-time RV-er.  She kindly gifted me with these batik scraps and remnants.

This is the last picture I was able to capture of the babies before they left the nest for good.  Time to do some heavy duty cleanup on the front porch.  I need to get Rent-A-(Grand)Kid to help with the ladder work.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Could Someone Loan Me a Paddle?

Even though our immediate area has so far escaped the terrible flooding experienced elsewhere in Texas; we have certainly had an unusually wet spring. 

All our streams and creeks are flowing swiftly. 

The golf course is closed until the cart trails are clear and the ground is not so soggy.

For the first time in many years the flood gates on our series of dams have been opened creating currents so dangerous the lakes have been closed for recreational purposes.  

Several of our low water crossings have flooded resulting in city street and state highway closures. After our terrible drought, I promised that I would not complain about the rain.  I will say, however, that I’ve really enjoyed our brief moments of sunshine.

There are still lots of baby birds around.  Swallows have once again built a nest over our front door.  This little guy does not appear to be at all amused by my presence.  But then, I'm very unamused by the mess he's making on my porch.

We also are having a lot of snake activity.  These two were seen this week along my usual walking route.

A Master Naturalist friend tells me this is a harmless rat snake.

My husband is pretty sure this one is harmless as well.  I don’t intend to test either theory out.

Somehow I ended up serving on two Guild committees.  I’ve enjoyed working with my friends on the donation quilt and a program for our August meeting, but it’s left me with very little time to sew.  

I managed to finish this project from the April Karen Eckmeier workshop on her Happy Villages technique.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

A "No" Kind of Day

Hubby is going to the ranch today.  So, since I have the house to myself and no other pressing commitments, I have declared it a no driving, no spending and no wearing makeup kind of day.  

Instead, I will plug into my current audio book and continue working on emptying and organizing scrap bags.  It seems, every time I take a workshop, I come home with both a UFO and another container of scraps.  The scraps have reached critical mass and I am running out of project containers.  You can see Maddie is totally untroubled by my dilemma.

 I’m using my die cutter to create usable strips in widths of 1, 1 ½ and 2 inches.  I chose these widths because my bow tie blocks require 1 and 1 ½ inch squares.  What I don't sub-cut will be stored and ready for future projects.  I’m hoping that by the time hubby returns tomorrow, I will have made considerable progress.

Most wildflowers have now faded here, but the cacti are still in bloom.  

Also, the extra moisture we have received this year has kept the landscaping around the golf course in bloom.

Tomorrow and Friday will be very busy days with a doctor’s appointment and four other gatherings I want to be a part of; so I better take maximum advantage of my time today.