Thursday, April 30, 2009

Great news!!...still not sewing yet

While still in the process of refitting the dining room stuff back in... I got great news! My oldest daughter Leslie-Anne got engaged while in Mexico!!! She and her (now) fiancee, Scott, went to Cabo San Lucas for a wedding of Scott's friend, Ashley. While there, he proposed to her on the beach. She says they hadn't talked about it before, but thought if he was ever gonna ask, it would be while they were there.
I think this picture has the original ring he proposed with...(she resized and picked out a different setting).
Leslie-Anne Taylor...hmm...nice

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

What a Fun way to spend a day NOT sewing...

Today was just plain HOT! Hey, 90 degrees in the northeast in April is HOT!! My grandson, Kai had a squirtgun ready for Gramma (Thank you Kai)

It was a day of babysitting for my daughter, but I also needed time to do some small 'touch ups' in the dining room (we're renovating). See the last post... It was nice to see the garden is coming along. I have MOST of last year's leaves off the beds, but haven't put any mulch down. We're thinking of cutting down a few trees and that may be what we use the 'wood chips' for.

This is the view of our house from the back lawn (think it needs to be cut?? --no, really, I'm on the ground--think 'ant'). I have so many of these violets, that the birds have been 'depositing' them all over the lawn.

This is a bleeding heart that mom gave each of us kids as we bought our own houses. She split them all from the original plant.

All along the rock edge I have these things (anemones?) that spread too....

One lonely tulip ... this bed was FULL of tulips before the squirrels got them over the years.
It was fun to sit at the picnic table and watch Kai play in the "sand pit" that I made with the leftover sand from last year. I usually put it down in the pathways, but I'll let him mix the dirt with this pile.... He was enjoying it.
He even washed a few toys...
I finally decided it was hot enough to have him wear "Papa's" hat! Too cute!!
This is my favorite picture of him.....
Thanks for a fun day.... (should have taken a picture of him taking a LONG nap after lunch!! That was the ulterior motive...heee,heee)

Renovations, no sewing yet....

Okay, I took the plunge!! I haven't been much of a decorator, but I got a 'push' from my sister (who does stuff all the time to her house), and a friend from church (who said he'd be glad to help me paint- he loves it-in exchange for doing some sewing - curtains and replacing a zipper- and my hubby is working on his car). Barter is a wonderful thing!... Notice the ugly paper???...
This room (dining) hasn't been touched since we bougtht the house 12 yrs ago. It was decorated 'early, ugly 70's,... you know, avocado green, harvest gold and brown and beige, ....YUCK! AND it was all smoke stained!! (Any smokers who read this... it took 2 coats of ceiling paint, a coat of KILZ and another coat of ceiling paint just to do the kitchen ceiling years ago. This time we did a coat of Kilz and a coat of ceiling paint (white) , but I kinow that I'll be doing the ceiling again. I can just see the yellow seeping through....Gross....)
This is a shot looking into the kitchen (the island is holding a lot of the 'mess'...
We have two large buffets (from both sides of the family) and don't want to get rid of either one... hence the picture of them still in the room...(it's a small house)...
This is after the 'dust settled from Lee sanding the spackle...
Just a deep shade of ugly yellow/gold.... Not sure which is worse, but I understand why they wallpapered... it needed a lot of spackle!
I tried the color I was using on the panels of the coat closet, it's called Pistachio green... Looked better when the painter's tape came off.
See the other buffet on the right? That's the 'ornate' one from Lee's grandmother, but real interesting.... I'll post photos of it once it gets all put back together.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Sew few people,, sew much done!

Hey, what a surprise!!
I had set aside the afternoon for the group to quilt (Sunday, after the 10am church service), and knowing how hard it is for some to 'give up' their family time on the weekends, I didn't expect too many people. In that respect, I wasn't disappointed. Just Margaret and me....
But that's okay!! We had such a relaxing time.... yacking away, and getting stuff done. We put the ties into a quilt for Charlotte's Garden and I found I DID have a black pigma pen to 'add' Made for Charlotte's Garden" above the present label (which I believe says it's a "Heartstring Quilt Project"). This is one we have put aside for Marta (moderator of the CG site).
While I was 'piecing batting' for a quilt, ... and by the way, I hate that job-- but when the batting it 'donated' you use what you have (we aren't funded by the church) Actually, that IS our motto... "Start where you are, Use what you have, Do what you can, and It will be enough."

We also picked out and pieced a backing for the black and white heartstring quilt with pink and orange (haven't named it yet). Also, pieced the backing for the "Blue-min' Heart" quilt and have that ready to quilt. Margaret started to stitch in the ditch on the "Lasagna 1" quilt (I may finish that before the next meeting). As nice as it was to have no one asking questions about what should they be working on, it made me get more done, too, it was too bad we couldn't have had more people there.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Trip to Mystic Aquarium

Lee had the day off and we had no day care for Kai on Wed. so we brought him to the aquarium (his first time). He was so fascinated with the outdoor exhibits, such as the Beluga whales...
you could even find a tiny little spot to crawl into and see through the glass walls. (Papa said while he was standing next to Kai, Kai was making a woooo-eeahhhh-eeoohhh, musical sound. When Papa asked him what he said, he told Papa he was "calling the humpback"...LOL
This was his favorite spot!
We went to see the penguin exhibit and his questions to us were... "How come they're not talking, Grammahh? ...and they're not dancing, Grammahh...
Okay, so he watches Happy Feet too much, ... not my fault
At the indoor exhibits, we found Nemo and Dory
and he made sure he pointed out Nemo's Dad.
The shark jaw was a very interesting place to check out...
Malakai! Bruce is right behind you!!
this is the place we needed to see before we left....
Good bye, whale...

Amber's birthday

A nice dinner, and a nice visit with my step-daughter and her family for her 26th birthday!

Nice play time with Zachary, too!

Too cute for words!!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Finished block picture

I realized I never added the 'finished' block picture (see below).

and here is a detailed photo or two of the stitching. Hope it helps...

Here is the finished block...

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Something new... at least for me! Tutorial

This is a "3-D curved flying geese" Tutorial. I'm not sure if there is a technical name for it, but that's MY name for it. I saw it at the Greater Hartford Quilt Guild's Sharing Day event and was bowled over by the creativeness and the possibilities!!
I started my 'test block' with 3" wide strips (just because I can never think of what else to do with 3" strips).
I cut two 3" x 3" peach squares and the black (geese) was cut 3" x 5.5" (you'll see why it wasn't cut 3" x 6" in a minute). You can make your geese any size, just remember to cut the 'folded' goose 1/2" shorter than twice the size of your 'squares'.
I folded the black rectangle in half- wrong sides together, which made it a 1/4" shorter when laid on the 3" x 3" square. Put the other 3" x 3" sq on top, right side of fabric down. (the squares will always be right sides together with the goose -right sides out-sandwiched in-between).
Sew down the SIDE of the block so it looks like this when opened.
Press the top square open and press the 'fold' into the black so when you open the folded black fabric, the crease stays like this
Line up the raw edges of the black to the raw edges on the bottom of the peach squares so they match like this
then press flat (the two top edges of the geese are really folded)
Now comes the fun part....
Fold the top edges to see what you will get for a 'look', but don't sew them just yet.
Here is my second 'set' of flying geese, since I wanted to give it a different look. It's only laid out on my cutting mat as a test (large black square was under the main black and white block, so it looks like small black squares, but decided not to get to 'tricky' on the first test block, just yet)

This is how I chose to finish off the block, as far as colors, but it isn't done yet!

Here is the final block, with only the bottom edge and the right-hand side (black geese only) folded back and sewn)...

The one thing you must know in sewing this curve.... when you get to sew 2/3 of the 'arch' in the goose, stop your machine- needle down- and roll back the next curve (other wing) so the 'points' overlap, then keep sewing up to the point-- stop, needle down-- then turn and follow the second wing's curve. I also 'curved the peach wings under the black wings, along with the single peach triangles that went off the the side of the geese (I just added that for unique-ness).
Hope this makes perfect sense to you and you all try this.... I was so excited after this event, I had all my geese made within hours of being home, just not sure of the final design.