Wednesday, August 29, 2012


Now, normally I am a pretty private person with this blog.  I blog about quilting most of the time, although I am trying hard to loosen up a little.  I am finding out that you can blog about "personal" things, without sacrificing privacy.....there is also a time when you just need to vent---in order to go on.

A little about me---I am a really sensitive person.  I don't say that to be "self promoting" or to feel sorry for myself.  That is just the truth.  I "feel" things a lot.  Where some things that happen would be blown off by others, I react differently.  Even if it really doesn't hurt my feelings, often it will make me think and ponder the situation, probably way too much.  Especially since no one else in my immediate world seems to feel the same.  My husband is one of those guys who say, "if that is what a person wants to do, so be it (unless of course it hurts HIS feelings)".  He tells me that I feel too much, my daughter says I "care" too much (unless of course it is something SHE cares about).  As a result, if I get MY feelings hurt or are concerned about something, NO ONE around here wants to hear about it.  I just need to "get over it" so to speak, until of course their feeling are also fragile at the moment.

Having said this, this is the challenge I have facing me today.  Our oldest daughter is coming to visit.  She lives in Tacoma, Washington----about as far as you can get from TN and still be on the mainland of the US.  She moved there because her husband got a job there---that is another story for a later date.  She only comes home once a year and  I talk to her by phone about 4 times a year (she says she calls more, but I don't talk with her since she calls during the day---I have to work).  We have a good relationship (I guess) so there is no reason she stays away.  However, with her husbands family, she is always on some type of visit (at least it seems that way to me).  Certainly she sees her mother-in-law more frequently than she sees me (and she has to travel to get there as well).  I am very disappointed, that she is coming tonight (Wednesday) and leaving on Monday.  I don't understand why, since she only comes once a year, her visit can't be longer than 4 days.  I made the mistake of talking to my husband and daughter about it and of course, I am "being unreasonable, thinking only of myself,".......all the  @#$@#   they say when I am upset or concerned about something they are not.  I know that if something were to happen to me, this same daughter would be inconsolable.  I am going to hope that the Lord allows me one last thing before I get to go to his house and lets me smack her down hard.  She will fall on the floor, crying and people will think she is so sad, but actually it is because I gave her a little push!  Why cry when I am gone when you squandered all the opportunities we had when we both could have enjoyed them?   I love her and miss her and want to spend more time with her, what is so selfish about that?

Okay, I feel better.  I am going to do my usual, stay out of the way, smile, cook, tell her how great she looks, but if she asked me if I am upset cause she isn't staying longer (because she knows I am upset, she has already asked her sister if I have said anything), I will say "are you upset?".  She of course will say, yes (since she knows what my answer will be) and when she starts that stuff about her job, hard to take time off, etc.  I will respond that there is one thing I have learned, and I am sure she has as well, that if you think something is important, you will make it happen.   Since she only comes up once a year, and doesn't really stay that long when she comes, it must not be important to her.  If it isn't important to her, I can't really answer that question, since it is out of my control.

In the meantime, I am going to save money and make sure I don't have to depend on my children for anything should I need it. 

If someone stops by to read this today, please don't feel compelled to respond either way.  This is MY blog, and the one place where I should be able to feel what I feel, when I feel it, if I want to AND talk abut it if I want to, without worrying about anyone agreeing or disagreeing with me. there!

Monday, August 27, 2012


This is the quilt I completed from blocks Diane sent me.  What looks like a black border on the front is actually magnets that I put on to keep the top taut and free of wrinkles while I quilt (as you see, I also "float" my tops).   I had some flannel that I used for backing, that although not the same shade of pink, certainly was an appropriate "make do".  The bright blue one inch border was perfect to "stop" the busy quilt and the pink print for the large border was perfect!  It is funny---every quilt I  make my DH says, "don't give that away!  You give all the pretty quilts away (meaning I guess I only keep ugly ones)!"  He of course said the same thing about this quilt, but it is too small for our bed and is clearly a lap, so he said, "we might have another grandbaby one day".  NOT----it is going to some little girl who will love cuddling up in it!  The flannel back is so SOFT!!!!  I am always caught by surprise when I "shop" my stash and most often, find just the right match for fabric that was purchased at totally different times, or was (as is this case) given to me.  I am now developing the habit to look, before I leave to buy more!  I will post another full picture of the quilt once I have completed the quilting.

BTW---see how neatly everything is stacked in the background!  The results of my cleaning day last week!

These are the charm packs that Diane also sent.  She sends two of each, so there is enough to make a decent top.  As I mentioned, several will go to make quilts for donation, but I have plans for the others.  I have already picked out the quilt for the layer cake----a nice spring quilt for the guest room.

Well, as you can see, my DH fixed the computer!  He hasn't forgotten his profession (he was a System Analyst) even though he is retired. 

Thanks again for stopping by!

Computer Sick, as am I!

For some reason I can't  log onto the Internet on my "everyday" computer, so I am not able to post pictures (I am posting this from my work computer, but I don't put personal stuff on it).  Hubby is at the other one now, so maybe he can help to make it better.

Me---I am sick as well!  When I got back from UT, I started with the sniffles and now I am achey, coughing, a low grade fever, etc.  Unlike some people I, however, have to keep going.  This is a really bad time to be ill---the new semester is starting, we have a new platform for grades and communicating with students (with little inservice) that I have to learn to navigate and I am chairman of a very important committee.  I pushed on----not coughing on anyone, using lots of germ-stuff for my hands, and not using anyone's telephone.  Today is Freshmen orientation (I have to go), but I am going to beg out of convocation.  I begin teaching tomorrow, and so I will ask the Dean if I can skip this event where I am just one of many!  I even had a gushing nose bleed during one meeting---that helped to end it sooner, so all wasn't lost (I didn't bleed on anyone, nor on my white blouse)!

Now on the quilting front.  Because I haven't been feeling well, I haven't done a lot of sewing, so not a lot to show.  I also got a package from Diane!!!!  She is reorganizing and I ALWAYS benefit from her cleaning.  She sent me a load of scraps (yea!) and a whole bunch of charm packs!!!! including a layer cake.  A couple I am going to use for the charity quilts my Guild is making, but some will go into some quilts for Christmas.  She also sent a bunch of blocks---one that is some sort of "crazy patch".  She didn't like it---it was made of 30's but since I was getting tired to just laying around, when I had a moment of clarity, I put them together, added a border from my scrap box, put a solid small border and have a really cute charity quilt that some little girl will love.  It took me about an hour to do all that.  It is loaded on the machine, but activity has stopped. 

I even pieced the batting from my scrap bag of batting.  I know that many of you actually sew the pieces together, but remember, I am lazy!  I loved the bonding tape, but it is really expensive, given the amount you get in a package (only enough for about a queen size quilt piecing).  Anyway, with one of my Joanne coupons, I purchased a bolt of tricot fusible interfacing,.  I cut it in 1.25 inch strips and it worked perfectly.  The one word of caution is you really need a pressing cloth.  The interfacing is thinner than the packaged bonding tape and so will curl.  I used a Teflon pressing sheet that worked great.

Anyway, I just wanted to check in and let you know I hadn't fallen off the face of the earth.  As soon as my "fun" computer gets fixed, I will post pictures.  Our oldest daughter is coming on Wednesday, so somewhere in these next three days, I have got to clean the house and make the guest bedroom ready.  Wow----no rest in my near future! 


Thursday, August 16, 2012

Update (Again)!

Our oldest Granddaughter has transferred to the University of Tennessee.  We leave to take her on Saturday in fact.  There really aren't any UT fans in the house (at least not currently) although I personally love the color orange.  Several years ago I purchased a box of scraps at the Guild auction and in the box was 2 yards of this UT fabric.  At the time I couldn't think what in the world I would use it for, so as any good quilter would do, I held on to it.   As I was going through my fabric shelves looking for fabric to back my youngest Granddaughters quilt, I came upon this.  I decided to make her some pillowcases.  I looked further and found the perfect orange for the cuff so I made her two.  I had some left over so I made another which I gave to my daughter (her mother).  In the box was also some Atlantic Falcons fabric.  I will just save that---who knows when I might need it!

"Spidey" is half finished.  I will work on it some more this afternoon.  I really like this quilt!  I have chosen what I think is a great border fabric, so it will be wonderfully "chaotic".  I have one more day at home (tomorrow) before I get busy---going to Knoxville, and then starting school.  I really don't have any time off since I have to also work on getting everything ready for the next semester which starts on the 27th.  Oh well, I will make the best of the time I have-----I could be jobless!

Well, gotta go---I am giving myself one more day to totally do what I want to do!

Have a great remainder of the week---thanks for stopping by!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Productive Monday!

My youngest granddaughter started this quilt at the beginning of summer.  She had sewn the squares together in pairs.  Even though she came over weekly, more important things---like going to the pool, movies, playing games, etc.---got in the way and so the quilt wasn't finished.  I cleaned my sewing studio room yesterday and found the pile of blocks.  Sometimes you just want to do something that is mindless, so I decided to finish the quilt for her (I sorta didn't want her sewing over pins on my featherweight anyway).  I looked through my stash and found the perfect borders, have loaded it on the longarm and am almost finished quilting it.  The charm pack was given to her by Diane when she came to visit, and everything else is from my stash or scrap bags, including the batting.  This would be a great baby gift or charity quilt as well.  I am going to make her a pillowcase, and although it would be a great Christmas gift, I think I might just give it to her now-----on second thought, I might just save it for Christmas!  I am going to make her brother one as well---I will look for a "guy" charm pack---maybe solid colors.

Anyway---I have had a productive day---although my legs are hurting---from cleaning and then standing all afternoon.  It feels good to have accomplished something quilty today!

Take care----"talk" to you later!!!

Sunday, August 12, 2012


I really did go out to the garage to die   dye, but it was too darn hot.  I couldn't even breathe in my mask---so I put it off for a cooler day!  I got up early today, and after church, decided I would tackle my quilting "studio".  There really isn't much I can do in there----everything is crammed in, (I really need to figure out a way to retake my hubby's "office" for studio #2).  I went to Wally World and got some 3 drawer things and put organized my fabs a little.  Rearranged stuff on shelves---worked in there for about 6 hours.  It does look neater anyway, but still crammed.  I am going to taken the sewing table tomorrow (my legs hurt and I am sleepy now), so we'll see how that goes.

I also decided to enter two quilts in the Modern Quilt Guild Show----thanks to the urging of a quilting sister.  Wouldn't it be a blast if it got accepted?  I really don't expect to win, but it would be nice to have it juried in.  I will hang it tomorrow and take some pictures. 

Well, just wanted to check back!  Later!!!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Dye Job!

This is 25 yards of fabric that I intend to dye tomorrow!  Maybe not all 25, but as much as I can before the heat gets to me.  There are several quilts I want to make, and I don't have much of a variety---so it looks like a "dye job" is in order.  Now that I have started dyeing my own fabric, I can appreciate the costs associated with hand dyes.  It is VERY time intensive, although for me, it is worth the wonderful colors.  When I am in the middle of rinsing all these by hand though, I want to just go to a good quilt shop (or internet store) and order some :c)!!  This is the best "dyeing weather", HOT, but my goodness, the heat is intensified in my garage with my breathing apparatus on as I mix colors.  Oh to have a "real" dyeing studio with air conditioning!!!!!!  I need to lose about 10 lbs anyway, so since it is expected to be about 93, I should at least get rid of 5 before the session is completed :c)!!!!!

On the quilting front, I have finished quilting "Make a Joyful Noise", and so now I am sewing down the binding.  It is funny how when you are quilting a quilt, every little "oops" is so obvious and then once done, it doesn't seem so bad.  I really am liking this quilt---lots of texture and it really does "make a joyful noise".  I am considering entering it into a show, knowing it will not win, but I am interested in what judges would say. I have to think a little about that.  I will post a picture soon though.  I purchased some equipment to hang quilts for photography as well as display, so I need to complete the sleeve and then hang it for a picture.

The Founding President of the Guild was asked to do an "artist talk" at our local visual art museum in connection with the Gee's Bend Quilt exhibit.  She wasn't able to fulfill this invitation, so she asked me to take her place!  I am "too" excited!  I love talking about quilting, AND I get to show some of my quilts!  I spent today thinking about what I wanted to convey to the audience, and then picked out quilts that would support those thoughts as well as be consistent with "Gee's Bend-type Quilts"---improvisation and spontaneity.  It  was interesting to see how my quilting has evolved, without a lot of forethought.  My problem is I may have too many so I will have to prioritize.  Maybe quilting is intuitive, since I haven't really had any formal teaching, so I am not sure where my color sense and style as come from.

One of the stories I have been asked to tell is how I got into quilting.  I wish I could say I learned by way of the women in my family, but that isn't true.  My brothers and sisters are actually old enough to be my parents and my mother had a different view of what she wanted me to do.  Instead of learning "traditional" women tasks, I was encouraged to read, spent time at summer camp learning how to ride a horse, and took ballet.  I was never taught to do things like cook or sew, nor did I have responsibilities around the house.  It was okay with my mother if I just sat and read a book or wrote a story.   I was a "daydreamer" who had dreams that didn't involve traditional roles---I wanted to be a judge----tell people what to do and right the wrongs of the world.

My interest in quilting came through my love for history and the fact that a quilt in a family was a link to the past.  I am all self-taught and spent about 3 years just reading about quilting and "collecting" quilting gadgets before I made my first quilt.  The fun part is that I do have that first quilt which I plan to show.  You can definitely see my growth :c).  Hopefully my "story" will be interesting---whether it is or not, it will be "my" story.

Well, just wanted to "check in".  More to follow!  Thanks for stopping by!