14 May 2019

Quilting America--Update

I hope everyone had a nice Mother's Day.
Mine included a lot of flowers (the planting kind!),
steak, creme brulee and seeing the Avengers movie.

Just a quick mid-week update here.

Since the windows are completely installed, the  LA is back
in place, up and running.   (No word on those doors yet.)

The American quilt is
loaded and I've started on the quilting.
I'm not real sure what I'll be writing on the label.
"Thanks, Coach!" seems a little understated but still,
it will just be a reminder of our thanks.  I'm sure we'll
write plenty in the card attached to the gift. 
I'm open to ideas here; that seems to be all I've got.

Things actually started drying up a little around here
so the midnight storm we just received wasn't unwanted.
It means less time spent watering the garden, and I'd really
rather not be bothered with that when working on party
preparations and quilting gifts so I'm all for it.
This has been just the greatest spring!
Any year we make it to June before turning on
the A/C is a favorite in my book.

We're already nearing the end of track season.
Last week DS took first in the City League;
Regionals are this Thursday.

There is so much going on over the next 10 days
that I'm excited about:  
Senior Farewell Mass and Award Ceremony
Because of  DS's USMA appointment, the award ceremony 
will include some fun moments for him (and his proud parents).
Regional Track Meet
State Track Meet
Son's graduation/send-off party

Among these, there are lots of other grad parties to attend.
We're trying but it's becoming impossible to hit
them all, especially with relatives visiting.
It all makes for a rather crazy time of it.
Crazy and fun.

If I find free time, I might start planning my next quilt,
though I'm in no hurry there, or putting my feet up,
enjoying my current read.

Happy quilting!

07 May 2019

Year of Banners Complete

We are soaked, and it just keeps raining!
I lost track because I've dumped the rain gauge
three times but I think we're up to like 7 inches.
It's kind of hard to believe it's even May.
This is April stuff here, cool temps and all.

So I made a cheery sunny banner!

Next week the sun should be shining, the flowers
will open again and this May banner 
will feel more appropriate.
But I am enjoying not having to water the garden
and everything is so wonderfully green!
Just maybe the temps will still be pleasant for
my son's graduation party!?

I have really enjoyed these small monthly side-projects.
Someday I may work up a few others for special days like
 birthdays, special Church feast days, etc.
but for now it's nice to have the entire set completed.

For fun, here's a review of all twelve banners:

Do I have a favorite?  Hmmm.
Really not sure but maybe January??
(Go figure!)
Happy quilting!

03 May 2019

Change of Plans

Sometimes God plans things out better than we do.
Oh, alright, He always does.

I've been working hard at getting this quilt
done for a charity event in June.  Picture me as
I stepped back to admire the completed top.
Not so much the workmanship
(I gotta be honest, I don't think it's my best--ie,
some of the star points--but I was cramped for time!) 
No, the pride came from my timely completion of it. 
I still had weeks to deadline and all it needed
was the quilting and binding.  And, I could also begin
working on that next deadlined project!  Whew!

Aaaand then that quickly I learned
that the charity event is actually this weekend. 
Me = deflated.
After my initial reaction of extreme frustration,
it began to dawn on me that I could make some
great lemonade out of these lemons.

🍋Lemon #1 🍋
 I just pushed to finish a quilt for no reason.

🍋Lemon #2 🍋 
The long-arm is off-limits for at least another week or so
adding to the cramps in the schedule.

🍋Lemon #3 🍋 
I really want to make a smaller, matching version of my son's
West Point quilt for his coach.   But, the deadline for the
quilt that's not even started would be just under a month
and there is a full calendar between now and then.

You see where I'm going with this?
I now have an almost-finished quilt that has no 
I also have a recipient with no quilt.

It's not in the school colors but it does have
a theme that could still easily work as a reminder of
the athlete he helped get into USMA.
It's too small but I can add a big border, which,
in this case I think will help with it being so "busy".

My hesitation:
When you choose a quilt for someone, you make every
choice--colors, fabric, design, etc--with that person
and situation in mind.  Maybe I put too much emphasis on
this but I find it a very important (and enjoyable) part
of the process.  It's what makes the gift so personal.
Still, I know well that I really don't have time
and that God has my best interests at heart here.

If there's one recurring theme going on in my head
lately, it is that I refuse to spend these last two
months stressing and working over a "perfect" party and
vacation when I could just be enjoying the moments.
So I've been trusting a lot to God and wouldn't you
know it?  He is just a better planner than I am.
Case in point:  this whole thing.
With only a little more thought into it,
I've come up with this on the program:

Don't you just love what a border can do?!?

The large dark border (7.25" here) and the gold
binding suddenly give it a look that I love.
The gold even gives it a bit of West Point.
Or just the Army in general.
And, it'll about 75x75--a good size for a man.
Bonus?  A project that I haven't even started is
suddenly almost done.
I'm actually so excited about this now!

Now if I can just get to that long arm soon!

Happy quilting!

29 April 2019

Monday Check-In: American Quilt

Seeing that May is upon us has me thinking I need
to step up my game again.  It is time to get this American
quilt finished and move on to the coach's quilt.

Putting everything together here for a visual.
I want to have a finished top by the end of this week.
Rainy days ahead so definitely doable.

I finished up the blue check squares last week and
moved on to all those red stars that I was kind of avoiding.
Some piecing just goes so sloooow!

Twelve done, 24 to go.

(You'll notice my shade drawn.  I love to sew in front of my
window but the window/door installers were working out there.
Fortunately, not today!)

Something is always going out/in/on at our house!

The windows are in but one will need to be switched
out due to damage in delivery; both deck doors had issues
as well so we're on hold for...not sure how long.  I have a grad
party in a few weeks but c'est la vie.  If it gets done, it gets done.
If it doesn't?  It's all family and friends and they sure don't care
if we have some construction going on on the side.
We will definitely need to have my long arm put back though
because our entire living room is unusable at the moment!

In other news, regardless of the wisdom teeth coming out,
my son did PR again--he's now up to 15'6".

That's just really getting high up there, isn't it?
I'm thinking at least a 16' vault (or higher!) to finish out
the high school years??  Crossing fingers.

It was also prom this weekend so yep, busy times. 
Typical of my son, he had to be a little extra stylish
by going all-white, which made him a hit.
His date was a friend but they made a stunning couple.
(I love seeing a modest dress!)
 We can't wait see him in the various military uniforms.

A few other spring pics to share:

A front porch visitor.
He's not quite open all the way so I think he hits 6".

This one was out in the garden.

I always note how their body is colored
to match as well.

And these from a couple weeks ago:

Again, the matching body.

Nature makes quilts, too.

Happy quilting!

23 April 2019

Time for Some Rainy Day Catch-Up and Quilting

As predicted, I have been spending lots of time outside.
After an early run to the store, I quickly put in the last
few plants just this morning as it was beginning to sprinkle.

With all the spring planting done in the garden, I now just
have to deal with the weeds, especially after this
nice spring rain I'm watching from inside the coffee shop.
I'm taking some time to get caught up on my planning
and scheduling for the next crazy couple of months.

We're getting new windows in our sunroom and new doors
on that deck, which means the long-arm had to be moved
and is therefore temporarily unavailable.  No problem for
now unless I get to sewing like mad on my American quilt.
And, unless the window installers take forever, which might
happen because I understood that this was the week
but I haven't heard a thing.  Of course, it's raining...
(Will have to touch base later today.)

I hope everyone had a beautiful Easter.  We go to the
Easter Vigil which puts us home pretty late on Saturday.
My bread had been started that morning but this stage was
pushed a little--I finished at 1:40am.  They still ended up being
pretty decent sourdough baguettes considering the small amount
of work that goes into them--they just take some time.  I may
have shared this before but if you have starter, this is a
great recipe and comes with a video for a little extra help.

Steve's Kitchen:  How To Make Sourdough Baguettes

Our pole vaulter was on the news again--we missed it
initially but one can always find things online.  His PR
is up to 15' 3 3/4".  Would love to see him finish the
year and high school at 16' or more but we'll see.

We also missed this pic which hit the newspaper.
Again, thank goodness for online because we never
get the paper.  He has a meet this Friday but having his
wisdom teeth removed yesterday (only local anesthesia)
and missing a couple practices might throw that off a bit.
But, he's tough.  This meet is 2+ hours away and,
depending on the window installation, I'm likely to not
be there to video so I'm sure he'll PR again
as that's just the way things seem to go! 
(Fyi--PR="personal record"; he's the current state champ)

There is still so much to do before he leaves, so much
to buy, so much to prep.  Among other things, these
have arrived in the mail.  Kinda makes it all real.
(scribbled out ones have last name on them)

So, not much going on in the sewing room but
I did get most of these blocks put together.
Today they get finished up and then I'll work on the 
last blocks, the center red stars.  

I was really only joking
when I started with the outside border first but I
somehow kept going and I really have done
this entire quilt from the outside in!
The jury is still kind of out on making a quilt for my son's
coach-of-many-years but I'm really leaning toward it,
especially with this America quilt getting done
so quickly.  With both being lap size, the time
involvement is so much less! 

Happy quilting!

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