Splendid Sampler Catchup

I am being good. I swear! I am in a lot of pain today, but I stayed on the couch decently well. Luckily cutting blocks  kept me there. I was catching up on the 25-30 splendid sampler blocks I was behind on. I took a picture of the finished blocks and the ones I have cut and are ready for piecing today. (See helper one, Nico, on the back of the couch).

img_20170124_211342

img_20170124_153437

Once I am done with these, I have 9 more to cut, then I have to piece them all. Once I piece them all I will have 103 quilt blocks. I plan on completing 7 more for a total of 110. I also cut the pieces for the 110 alternate blocks. Thanks to Texas Quilting for the idea (https://texasquilting.org/).

img_20170124_211018

That will make this officially the largest quilt I have ever made. Luckily we just bought a king size bed therefore this will be a great use for this huge quilt. Without a border it will be 120in x 132in wowsers and all of it made from Marcia Derse fabrics both old and new.

And here is helper #2 (Pancho): “I’m helping mama!” He is being such a brat since he lost his play partner. He doesn’t have anyone to get his energy out anymore 😦

IMG_20170122_154901.jpg

I don’t remember the last few days too well so I’m sorry if this is a repeat, but last week Friday I had hurnia surgery and we have to put our 4 year old beautiful, pesky, amazing Bengal baby, Enzo, down. He had a cancerous tumor on his heart and we didn’t even know it until the last week. We thought all the human food we were feeding him was possibly giving him diabetes so we took him in. Not the end result we were expecting. 😦

Here is a glorious memory of him 🙂 Luckily he was a very loved kitty and had a great life. We took well over 150 photos of him and keep finding more every day. Like this one:

wpid-facebook_-538809181.jpg

We also have tons of videos of him too. Here he is helping mommy cut strips for this quilt.

Row Robin and Round Robin -Round 3

Today I finished us row 3 of my row robin for Big Red Quilters Guild. My row is the 12″ squares on the bottom. Her rules were civil war based in pattern and fabric. She provided the fabric. Luckily she doesn’t follow me so I can post this. Two more rows to go on this one.

I also finished my third round on my round robin for Lighthouse Quilt Guild. She also (hopefully) doesn’t follow me. There is one lady in my round I won’t be able to post, but I’m not there yet. 

After 3 failed ideas ( this just wasn’t working for me today) I finally got a great idea. The tree was round 1, the border around it was round 2, but luckily this is a round robin with no rules. I was originally doing a border with friendship starts around it, but for many many reasons that fell through. Therefore I added them to the ‘sky’ and added the log cabin on the side. I’m very happy with it now. I don’t know why this one was kicking my butt, but it was. 

I know my progress has seemed spectacular, but it is most attributed to the fact that I will be having surgery on Friday for an Inguinal Hernia and I am not sure how much quilting I will be able to accomplish for a little while after that. Therefore I’m trying to accomplish much of it now. 

I have been a bad blogger

So I don’t know what happened, but life got crazy. I’ve had no time to quilt it seems, and have been crazy. I don’t even know what I have been doing. I know I lost a few weeks in September due to losing my grandmother. I still miss her and I feel awful for my dad. He has tried calling her and doesn’t remember she is gone until he picks up the phone. 😦

Then we were working on finishing our basement. We hired a contractor to install a new wall, install all the stuff in the walls, and drywall. I have since then painted all the walls, installed all the finishes, installed the floor, and have painted the trim. I just need to finish installing the trim. Also, both my quilting rooms have been moved to the basement, all except parts of the longarm that we need help moving. I still need to install the trim and in the future I WILL have built ins on the whole wall with the windows. When it is done I will take another picture.

img_20161213_061038img_20161213_061021

I took a class to make a tuffet. It matches my basement decor. The class was through my guild, Lighthouse Quilt Guild who I am not the historian of. The class was so much fun I took a second one home to make. I just have to convince my husband to do a math problem to assist me in what angle I need to cut the pieces in since I am changing the width. My first one has become the spot the cats must fight over. It even has loose threads as proof.

img_20161115_210622109

I also went to our Guild Winter Retreat! I love those women! I always have a blast, though I pushed it way too much this time. 7 hours of sleep all weekend is not enough. By Sunday I was so out of it I left a couple of items that a friend of mine kept for me. I was supposed to get them back, but our December guild meeting was cancelled due to a lot of snow. Here is what I made at the retreat.

img_20161203_211324053img_20161202_152727837img_20161202_151007888_hdr

The two finished quilts were UFOs that I obtained. The first one is nothing but triangles, sadly I didn’t realize this quilt would be nothing but points until I started stitching it. The white part was the only part already cut. I picked the colorful fabrics, cut those, and pieced them. I laid it all out Friday night and had to have it pieced by Saturday noon or I was going to lose my tables for lunch. Therefore 3 hours of sleep and I got it pieced. I just need to get fabric to border it.

The second one is November’s block of the month for Aurifil. All I have left is December.

The third one was some UFO I obtained. Most of them were full blocks purple and full blocks of stripes so I just made something up. I had to square a ton of them up, but I love the finish. This was so fun. I don’t know the original pattern and I think that makes it even better.

I also finished this for the Big Red Quilters Guild row by row challenge. I decided to do a Christmas row by row.

img_20161127_134052936

I also put together a center block for a round robbin which I just started and need to pass on. We were supposed to pass it on at our cancelled guild meeting. (See photo at the bottom of the post).

We also went to a bunch of College Football games. We supported 3 games this year! I have never been to more than 1 per season. It was so fun! Two were with my husband’s family and 1 was just with his aunt and uncle. He got tickets to the rivalry game for our anniversary and I got to choose who we invited.

img_20161105_151946659img_20161029_155146624_hdrimg9513301img_32221

I was looking through and have all sorts of other events I have been to, but I am going to stop there. That is most of my fall with quilting at least. I can’t wait to get done with the basement so I can get back at it!

Here is the round robbin photo. I still need to sew pieces down, but at least they are attached for now.

img_20161218_211057

Other things we have been up to, my husband and I went on a trip up a few hours north in Michigan (a friend surprised us with a retreat), we visited my parents to borrow their miter saw and mom gave my husband copper mugs, I sold my car and got a new one (it has a back seat so it is a little more friendly to having a possible baby in the back seat), etc. And no I’m not pregnant, there are plans and I am a planner so I am ahead of the game.

Oh and did I mention I have a hernia? I didn’t cause it by carrying heavy items, it was a thin spot in intestinal lining. It is slowing me down a bit, though on moving my quilt rooms. It basically feels like I have a knot in my side. You know that pain you get in your side when you run and have a “stitch” in your side? That is what it feels like after about 3-4 hours of being up. Luckily, I lay down and all the pain goes away. I will find out what needs to be done on January 4. I’ve heard it is outpatient surgery. Okay, it was nice catching up. I missed ya’ll. I will try to get back on track to posting more.

Birthday Weekend 

Saturday, Sept 10 I worked on the new Splendid Sampler block.

Hearts & Flowers by Fiona Ransley. This is an embroidery block. I decided to add in a little applique and embroidery the rest when I get the threat to did so. 

Then I packed everything up for my class on Sunday. I look a class by Deb Karasik called Batik Wheels. 

The fabrics are all going to be my hand died fabrics that I made at AQS. 

Monday and Tuesday I spent at my Grandma’s funeral with family. Here is my family. About 5 cousins are missing, but everyone else is there. 

My mom is in the teal. I am two down on the left (when looking at the photo, her right) with half my head shaved.  Saying “I’m the one wearing back” wouldn’t help. Grandma was buried at the Mennonite Church near Fayette, Ohio, USA. 

I visited my Great Grandma and Grandpa while I was there. 

Also during the trip to stay calm while talking to all the family I pieced part of another rosette in my La Passacaglia quilt. 

The stars around it will have more orange to bring it back in. 

My Life

I will warn you that this post is more about me than my quilting.

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately. I feel so incredibly lucky. My life has come so far over the last 12 years.

12 years ago:

  1. I was finishing up my Bachelor degree in Bowling Green, OH
  2. I was dating a verbally abuse man.
  3. I had no self esteem, no self assurance.
  4. I had a bright fruitful future working as a Medical Laboratory Technologist in a lab and was already working at that lab part-time.
  5. I was living in Ohio and 1 year later would buy a house near Toledo, OH because that is where I was staying (even though I was not happy).
  6. I lived, ate, and drank work and school, except when I was playing the horribly addictive World of Warcraft.

Today:

  1. I have not only completed my Bachelor of Science, I went back and completed my Master of Public Health. I had an amazing Mentor that taught me I can be whomever I want
  2. I am now with man who’s intelligence way surpasses my own and is my equal in every other way. (I learned that I argue with him, he will win. He has learned that arguing isn’t about winning, at least not every time).
  3. I am gaining self esteem, self assurance, and belief in myself. Where as before I was a driven individual, but I made up for things in the wrong way because I wanted to make others believe I could do something when I wasn’t so sure I could.
  4. I now work in Public Health specifically Environmental Health. I never saw myself here. I was going to be an epidemiologist. I even did an internship it is. When a job came open for Environmental Health Technician I saw it as my “foot in the door.” 4 years late I haven’t left and I have no plans on it. I have went from a two-year degree position to an Environmental Health Sanitarian (four-year degrees position) to an Environmental Health Specialist. This is my dream position. It is the position that most people in the field plan on retiring in. I still have plans on moving up, but I know that there are a lot of people in the field that I can call mentors and many people who believe in me. This has helped me to believe in myself. I still have a ways to go but I am proud of myself.
  5. I now live in West Michigan between Grand Rapids, MI and Grand Haven, MI. It is beautiful here. Still too much winter, but the summers make up for it with their beauty and the amazing lakeshore. Lake Michigan is like going to the salt water ocean only with no creatures that can bite, sting, or otherwise torture you.
  6. I now have a great work/home balance. I rarely play video games. (I mostly play them now when I realize I’m shopping and don’t need to be.) I spend most of my winter spare time quilting and most of my summer spare time relaxing outside.

All in all I realized this morning on my way to work that even with all the stress I would not change a thing in my life. I love my life. Thank you to everyone in my life who made that possible. I could not have become a better person without you.

New Kitchen Dishes

Many of our dishes are getting cracked and chipped. A few have even been broken or lost. Also, the bowls and plates can be either too large or small for the amount of food we are eating. Not to mention finding this beautiful dish sets out there and always wanting to replace mine.

I found the solution at my best friends’ house. She has this ‘set’ of unmatched dishes. They are beautiful! This was an aha moment for me. This also solves the issue of me getting bored with my dishes and loving other patterns out there.

So, with my husband’s blessing (or I should say his “it would be nice not to have chipped dishes” and then him going snowboarding and leaving me home alone) I have started the collection and it is making me smile…

image

I wasn’t going to get the creamer and sugar dish, but they were being clearances out for $3 for the two of them! I can’t wait to keep adding to these.

I did set a few rules:
1) They must have some type of pattern and the pattern cannot be cut off because it breaks an ‘edge.’ In other words, no edge only patterns.
2) The plates and bowls must all be round, no square ones. Easier for stacking, not dropping, and storing.
3) They MUST all be dishwasher and microwave safe. None of this, oops, one wasn’t, there goes our microwave.
4) It must make me smile (or my husband).

Busy Weekend

I finished the Black, White and Green quilt yesterday and today I have completed (almost) two tops!

The first one, posted originally in Summer 2012 Fon’s and Porter’s Easy Quilts Magazine. The name of the original quilt is “Fat Quarter Six Pack.” The first thing I loved about this quilt is how much of the fat quarter was used. I only had a little less than a 2″ strip left over of each color. I still need to put on the borders, but I need to buy the colors and no stores are open on Sunday 😦  None the less I already know what I am going to quilt on this one. I am going to do free motion swirls, butterflies, and flowers. It will be a great practice quilt.

Image

Also, I was pretty proud of myself. This is the first quilt that I have not had to “make” the triangles ‘work’ so they have points. They all lined up and I took a picture of the worst of them. Even my picky fiance had a lot of good things to say about the triangles being pieced well.

Image

THEN I got bored and started a new project. It took me 4 hours to pick the fabrics then piece this together. We have been wanting a table runner for the back of our piano for a while now so I put one together. The colors go perfect with our Legault painting! This is a table runner our of the Summer 2013 Fon’s and Porter’s Easy Quilts magazine.

Image

Now I am ready to practice some longarm quilting (after I pack to go to D.C.). I am headed to D.C. for work this week and I cannot wait to get back. I am hoping that next weekend I will be ready to put one of these quilts on the longarm and practice on a REAL quilt!

YIPPEE!!

Picking Up Speed

I have been so busy working on this …

image

The Great Wall of Jamandason (Jason, my fiancé and Amanda, me), that I have not been quilting enough, but yesterday I started to turn it around. It is amazing how your thinking changes when you take you hobby and turn it into a business. I kept thinking about how much time I was spending on things. I am glad some things will start going faster. An hour to load a quilt is just wwwaaayyyy too long.

But I did get a lot done. I totally re-read this book:
The Ultimate Guide to Longarm Machine Quilting by Linda V. Taylor (picture is backwards). I took all the goodies out of it that I need for now. It is a great book to get you thinking about all those business charges and expenses.

image

I also drew all 47 pictures in the Trillium House Designs Pocket Guide to Free hand Meanderings and 17 pictures out of the Textures and Fillers books.

image

After all that I got a new ‘practice’ quilt loaded, different thread on the machine, and new thread on the side to wind a bobbin. I am all ready to start quilting those pictures I drew now. I hope to start that tonight depending on what happens with my car.

Unfortunately my car was overheating and ended up at the dealership to get fixed. (Hopefully today)

Cute, Tiny, Fluffy, and Irresistible

I know, not quilting related, but I still HAD to share! It’s my new kitten!!!!!!! I can now add Grace on High Enzo Ferrari to my family (Enzo for short). Here he is!

Grace on High Enzo Ferrari at 6 weeks old.

The addition to my two other boys 🙂

Cattails Forest Francisco Pancho Villa, 9 months old.
Cattails Forest Nicolaus Copernicus, 9 months old (with Pancho in the blanket).