Saturday, December 27, 2014

MERRY CHRISTMAS

Daytona Beach
 
I had a great Christmas with family. The day was beautiful with partly cloudy skies and temps in the mid to high 60s.
 
Tina cooking breakfast.
 
I started the day at my sister Tina's house. She cooks breakfast every year for the family. We had a smaller group this year than we usually do.
 
Okalea and Mom
 
Mom and sister Okalea were there, along with Okalea's husband Tom, my nephew and his girlfriend, grand nephew, niece and me of course.  
 
Lonnie
 
Later in the day my son Lonnie took me out to Joe's Crab Shack for dinner. The restaurant is located on the Daytona Beach pier. We dined on stuffed shrimp and mahi, mahi tacos out on the pier in the fresh air.
 
Jim and Debbie 1994
 
I finished the day by remembering happy days with my late husband. The lack of his presence is the only thing keeping this from being a perfect Christmas.
 
How was your Christmas?
 
Debbie
 
 
 
 

New projects started

Mr. Cottontail
 
 
I didn't have any Friday finishes but I did make progress on some Spring projects. First I finished hand stitching Mr Cottontail.
 


Then I started making blocks for a lap quilt. This is the first project from a book I bought, "Quilt As You Go Made Modern."
Jera's over at Quilting in the Rain new book.
 
 
I made six more squares today, Saturday. I even managed to clean both bathrooms and wash two loads of clothes in between blocks.
 
 
The day was topped off with a deliver of Kona cotton and a Jelly Roll.
 
So far the weekend after Christmas is pretty good.
 
Debbie
 



Monday, December 22, 2014

Great end to a bad week and a finish

When I woke Saturday morning and took Tebow out for his morning constitution I was energized. The sky was blue, the temperature was 75 degrees and I could smell the salt water. It was hard to sit still long enough to do my devotions because yesterday I got the call to pick up my sewing machine from the repair shop and I was ready to get back to quilting. You see my week had been a bad one and I was ready to do some relaxing.

My week went bad on hump day Wednesday. I was getting ready to head out to buy closed in shoes for my trip to Ohio on Sunday. Being a Florida girl I only own flip flops and sandals. I decided to check the mail and right on top was a summons for jury duty, my first ever. The date, right in the middle of my vacation. I was going to see if I could postpone it to a later date but wanted to check on my ticket refund in case I couldn't. I did buy insurance for trip cancelation. Problem #2 When I called I found out I made the reservation for the wrong month. :{  November which has passed. Good bye refund. #3 Thursday I got the news that my mother's CT scan came back with some concerns about cancer and a PET scan was ordered for next week. Knowing that I wouldn't have wanted to leave her alone so it turned out I wouldn't have gone anyway.

So now to the good part or so I thought. I picked up my machine set it up and got to work on my step-daughters rag quilt.
Ann's Quilt
 
I had promised it over a year ago and was working on it when my machine broke. I sent her a PM telling her I would have it ready Sunday night when she came for her Sunday visit. Well the bad week wasn't over yet. I began to sew and the thread broke. re - threaded sewed another two feet, thread broke. Tried a third time and yes the thread broke. This was one of the problems before fix so I was frustrated. The repair shop guarantees their work so that wasn't a problem, but he didn't open again till Tuesday. Bummer.

Sunday I quilted some on Mr. Cottontail and grumbled about hating sewing machines.
 
Monday morning I thought maybe I could see where the thread was catching and figure out how to fix it. Found the problem.
It was me and my thread holder.
Rag Quilt is finished and I even closed up the dog pillow I stuffed with last years tiny scraps of thread, fabric and batting.
 
Tebow and his new pillow.
 
And my stepdaughter, Ann and grandkids postponed their visit a day so I was able to gift the quilt tonight. Looks like this week is going to be much better.
 
Now onto the next quilt.
 
Happy quilting.
 
Debbie
 


Sunday, December 14, 2014

Slow Stitching

I have given up on any Christmas stitching and packed it away. I am headed out of town for the next month and I needed something small and portable to take on the plane so I broke out my
Mr. Cottontail and Lady Duck.

 
I started Mr. Cottontail last Spring when my husband was in his last week of Hospice. I finished up the outline of his body and face.

 
Then I moved to filling in the blank space with angled lines.
 

As you can see I just started the lines. My husband died on Good Friday and I put Mr. Cottontail and Lady Duck away.
 
Now I am ready to finish them up. I do not know if I will make a wall hanging or a table topper with them. I figure they will let me know when the time comes.
 
Are you still sewing for Christmas?
 
May you have a relaxing and stress free week.
 
 
Debbie
 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Tis The Season

 
Tis the season for joy, peace and harmony but also for colds and flu. I am still suffering from the residuals of a cold that went into a respiratory infection. Once the antibiotics kicked in I felt like accomplishing a few quilty things like my lap quilt for Christmas.

 
So I ironed the top and batting and was getting ready to cut the backing so I could baste when I had to leave to take my mother to the doctor. So I draped the top over a dining chair to keep it from wrinkling, closed bedroom door to keep Tebow from punishing me for leaving yet again and off I went.  I had been away for longer periods and more often than normal so, my little Tebow was not happy and punished me. 

 
Yep you guessed it. He hiked his leg on my top. No I did not murder him but I wanted to in a bad way. Now I was going to have to wash the top and I knew it was going to ravel and be a mess because I had washed one before. Luckily my friend Kathi had a thought, "Wash it by hand." I did and it worked! Thank you Kathi. It is now re-ironed and ready to baste.
 
Happy Quilting my friends.
Debbie

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Best Laid Plans and Colds

I was so proud of myself for finishing up some projects that had been put on the back burner while I finished some orders for bowl cozies. I was on a role so I decided to use my new die for my Accuquilt to cut out the fabric for my step-daughters rag quilt while I baked pies on Wednesday. I figured I could get it ready to go, then sew it up on Saturday after Thanksgiving and have it ready to give on Sunday when she comes to visit.
 
 


I had also planned to baste this Christmas quilt top so I would have something to hand quilt while watching Christmas movies.

Well I didn't plan on two people having colds at Thanksgiving dinner so of course by Friday night I was getting a sore throat. On Saturday morning I ached all over and felt very tired. I went back to bed around 10 am and slept until my son called at 1:30 pm. I felt a little better so continued my Cold Ez, liquids and rest. By evening I was aching again so went to bed early.

Sunday morning I awoke several times with scratchy a dry throat. My poodle, Tebow finally couldn't wait any longer and I had to get up. Aches gone, sore throat still present. I spent the day reading and resting but did go out in the late afternoon for Tebow and I's Sunday treat, Dairy Queen.


Tonight will be more rest, Cold Eeze and the rest of my Blizzard. Hope that knocks the rest of it out so I can get my quilting mojo back.

Debbie

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Finishing up

 
 
Today I decided to finish up a few small projects. These stockings were the first on the list. My daughter had requested six matching stockings for her family the week before Christmas 2013. I had all but the cuff put on two of them before I put them away until this year.
 

Well it could have been a fast finish except it took three tries for me to get it sewn on the right side. Why did I keep sewing it on wrong? Who knows.
 
Then I put the backing on my Thanksgiving Table Runner; no binding yet so won't use till next year.
 

 
Last of all I fixed the edges of two bowl cozies.
 


I also was able to sort and store more fabric in the sewing room. On the quilt agenda for the rest of the week,  pin basting the Christmas lap quilt I plan to hand quilt. I need something to hand quilt while relaxing in front of the TV. Maybe big stitch with #8 perle cotton. I also plan to cut the pieces for my step-daughter, Ann's rag quilt.  I promised to make it for her over a year ago when she picked out the fabric. Of course my two granddaughters had also wanted one of their own so I made them right away. After making those two rag quilts I was over rag quilts for awhile. I am cheating this time by cutting Ann's out with my Acuquilt, no clipping and the least favorite part of quilting for me is the cutting.

May those of you who live in the USA have a blessed Thanksgiving.

I enjoy reading your post and strive to respond to all of them so drop me a line, or two, or three. :)

Debbie

Sunday, November 16, 2014

THIS AND THAT FINALLY FINISHED

 
 
 I have finally finished my "Big Stitch Quilt" and named it "This and That."
 
 

 
 
The pattern is an eclectic scrap pattern I found on the internet. I cannot remember where so I can't credit the person.
 
It is made with large scraps cut different sizes and shapes and backed in a soft yellow flannel.
 
 
I big stitch quilted with a natural color pearle cotton thread in various patterns through out.
 
Hearts...........
 
flowers..........
 
squares.......

waves.....
 
and several others 
 
To finish it off I stitched butterflies around the border.
 
 
The yellow is not bright as it shows in this picture. It is a soft baby yellow.

 
I have come to realize this week that my brain retired when my body did so I do not remember when I started this project.  I know it was before I moved in August. I actually finished this in October but didn't settle on the binding until last week. Since this was a scrap quilt I didn't want to buy fabric to bind it. I have dug through my containers of fabric looking for something that would work several times and had no luck. Storage bins are not the best for storing fabric in my opinion.  
 
I spent a day last week sorting my fabrics, folding and arranging on shelves in my finally finished quilt room (Pictures to come in a future post.) when I ran across more of the blue fabric I used in the quilt. There was more than enough for the binding. Yipeee. I immediately got out my Accuquilt and cut, ironed and machine sewed on the binding in less than five minutes. Did I say I love my Accuquilt. :) What a timesaver for someone who hates cutting fabric.

I then spent Saturday hand sewing the binding down to finish.



I also made this bowl cozy set for my sister in Ohio.
 

 

 
I still have a couple small bowl cozies she ordered for Christmas gifts to make this week, a table runner to finish for Thanksgiving, stockings for my daughters family (started last year) and a Christmas quilt to start quilting.  This week should be busy.

Have a blessed week my friends.

Debbie


                 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Autumn Table Runner


I have been wanting to try a 10 minute table runner for some time now so when the quilted Thanksgiving runner I was making kept giving me problems I decided to make one.

I went to Joann's Fabric and bought the exact two cuts of fabric  I needed. I didn't make it in 10 minutes, more like 20, but pretty fast project.

 
I used this leaf stitch on my sewing machine to sew down each end were the back fabric folds over the front. The instructions say to use a button but I thought this looks better.
 
Close up of the front fabric


I love this back fabric. I had some last year. Can't remember what I used it in but that is normal. LOL
 

And finally, the latest project. I wanted to join a Quilt Along Jera Brandvig was hosting over at "Quilting In The Rain" but her book Quilt As You Go Made Modern is on back order. So I decided to use some of my Autumn scraps to figure out the blocks on my own by looking at the pictures on her site. So far I am liking it. I hope I have enough scraps to make a table runner.
 
I haven't started another hand quilting project yet but will as soon as I finish the Christmas stockings my daughter asked for and some bowl cozies my sister ordered as Christmas gifts.
 
Until next time, keep quilting and creating.
 
Debbie

 

Stitching Times Two

Stitching Times Two

 
Today I have been switching between hand quilting and machine piecing. This first piece is a table runner I pieced before I knew about needles, batting and fabric for quilting. It was a stitch and flip and I ran out of fabric for the border so it only had borders on the top and bottom. My friend Kathi over at KC Originals found more of the fabric I was using for the border and gifted it to me. Thanks my friend. I also decided to add some hand quilting for practice and interest. So off came the binding and border and I started the quilting. I used a stencil to put the design down the center and then I am free handing the echo on the sides. The free hand stitches are hard to see.
(I still haven't gotten a new camera)
 
 
 
The second project is a Tumbler Flag wall hanging I am doing for the Hospice Chaplin who ministered to my husband and family while my husband was in the Hospice facility. In yesterdays post I demonstrated cutting the pieces out on my new acuquilt. Today I started piecing the top but kept getting interrupted by visits from grandchildren. :) 

 
So, either I will finish piecing tonight or I will take it to finish the piecing at my LQS Tuesday UFO gathering.
 
Hope you had a relaxing and Blessed Sunday.
 
Debbie

Monday, October 27, 2014

Floor is Down Dust is Everywhere

Floor is Down Dust is Everywhere

 
 
Saturday my son finished installing the floor in my quilting/guest room. Look at the dust!! I am allergic to dust. Cough, cough.

 
There was no place to put the big furniture like my computer cabinet so he had to shift things around as he worked.
I had moved my fabric and sewing machine to the dining room so they were protected. Imagine my dismay when I walked in to check on progress and saw a stack of fabric sitting covered with dust. :( Guess there is some pre-washing and ironing going to happen soon.
 
My old vacumn cleaner has a bag and the bags are getting scarce as hen's teeth. I ended up having to order on Ebay. They were suppose to be here Friday but that didn't happen. According to tracking it will be today. Until they arrive I have closed the door to that room. I dread cleaning up that fine dust. If you missed my previous postings, the dust is construction dust from under the carpet which was original from 1986. Apparently builders just lay the flooring over the dust and debris.
 
 
 
As for quilting. My Thanksgiving runner was suppose to be finished but once again the quilting gods were against me. I was finishing sewing down the binding and what did I discover? I missed about an inch of catching the top under the binding when machine stitching the binding down, Keep in mind I had finished hand stitching all the binding to the back before I discovered it. So it is in the "deal with some other day, month or year" pile. LOL
 
 
And the never ending baby or lap quilt saga continues. As I stated in an earlier post, I originally straight line machine quilted this, didn't like it, ripped it out and started big stitch quilting with pearle cotton thread. I didn't like that either. Sooooooooo, I am thinking of machine wavy stitching. What do you think? I am really getting frustrated with this and want to finally finish.
 
So, if you can give me ideas I would love to hear from you. Even if have no idea, just to say hi.
 
Debbie 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Slow Stitching

Slow Stitching

 
 
 
I am a little late with my Sunday slow stitching post, mostly because I have been feeling down all weekend and procrastinating.
Above is the lap quilt I made at my first quilting class. I originally wanted to hand quilt it but Quilt shops never have someone who teaches hand quilting so I ended up machine quilting.
 
I put off binding it for six months because I didn't like the quilting. I finally decided to add more quilting and bound it. Still not what I wanted. Now that I have done some had quilting and big stitch quilting I decided to big stitch quilt it. All last week I removed the machine quilting. UGH! Friday I began hand quilting. :)
 
 
Thursday I decided to make this Fall table runner. I had cut the materials out last month but got side tracked. Well the quilting gods were against me that day. First I ran out of bobbin thread six inches before completing the quilting. Of course that was the last back up bobbin so I had to wound more and take out that partial line of quilting. By then it was past lunch and I was hungry but determined to at least get the quilting done and binding attached so I could relax after lunch and hand stitch the binding down. Not happening. Just as I noticed the foot of the machine was loose, it fell off and the needle hit it and broke. ERRRRRRRRRRR.
So I spent 10 minutes looking for the needles I had bought before moving. Finally found them and proceeded to change out the needle. Not happening. The needle would go crooked when tightening or be to far up in the shaft. I struggled for an hour determined to finish that table runner. By now I am starving and ready to toss my machine in the dumpster. So I gave up, go buy junk food to sooth my frustration and watch TV for a few hours.
 
By 7 PM I am determined again. At least, I think, I can get the binding on and sew it down tomorrow. I found the book to my machine the first place I looked. Yea! Read how to put the needle in "correctly" and was off sewing on the binding. 3/4 done and realize I missed trimming one side of the runner.
Ok quilting gods, I surrender.
 
Friday morning dawns. Ok ripping seams begins, trim and reattach the binding. The quilting gods are smiling. Not!
 
Can't find the brown thread to sew down the binding. After several attempts to locate I give up. So, the runner hangs on the back of a chair in the dining room waiting for me to make another trip to Joann's or find the brown thread, whichever comes first.
 
 
The reason I am still looking for things and sewing in the dining room is my son had a busy week and had to work this weekend, so my sewing room floor is on hold. He is suppose to finish it this Tuesday if all goes well. 
 
Sorry for the lengthy post but sometimes you have just have to vent.
 
Thanks for reading my blog. I look forward to your comments.
 
Debbie