Thursday, December 30, 2010

the (mostly) true story of Christmas 2010

I am sure many of you saw Rachel of p.s. i quilt is having a little giveaway with Fat Quarter Shop, and as lucky as I've been lately I should let someone else have the luck, but I resisted all of a day and a half but I want some fabrics they have and I can't resisit any longer.

First things first, APQ bloggers, I finished the last of the blocks tonight (as part of my "new years eve finish it up" fun) I can't find my sharpie so when we go out tomorrow I will get a new one. I also want to include a little piece of Montana for y'all so I will be mailing next week! WAHOO! I hate that it's this late but I am SO GLAD to cross those off my list!

k, so I need to tell you a story about Christmas and how some packages fell off Santa's sleigh. at least from my experiences Christmas Day

Well, it started Christmas eve. I took the girls to "midnight mass" at 10 pm. They were SO WELL behaved, I was shocked. I brought some coloring things, barbie, a baby doll and three wood puzzles. The puzzles were the main entertainer, they even got the older lady next to us to play with them. We came home, I used the Night Before Christmas that my Nana (who passed away last Feb) and Pop-Pop recorded for them and off to bed they went. Then I baked cookies...until 1 am. Then I crashed!

I woke up Christmas morning, and got ready for work. I Was only scheduled 17 hours that week so when the other store called to say they needed someone to help out Christmas day I jumped at it (my store was closed!) and I worked 9-3:30. Oh! when I left there were no presents. Still none when I got home, but we found a note from Santa on the cookie tray we have that said:

There were no cookies that I could see

So I left you no presents under the tree.

Now don't you worry. Don't you fret!

I'll be back with presents for you yet!

we went out to A's mom's house (I was told by one of my co-workers that I am a saint for dealing with her so gracefully this year! She hates me!) I gave her a picture of the girls sitting at her parents headstone smiling from Memorial Day that I blew up onto canvas thanks to Costco, and I gave her sister a Bead For Life necklace and two mug rugs that I made at the last minute (I did the binding backside at the church saving everyone seats for mass!) and her daughter Duplo Lego's and a memory game.

I came home, and we DID leave cookies out this time and when they dropped me off to take care of the ham (htey were driving around looking at lights but the ham had to be glazed and was almost done so they let me out of the car and then they finished the rounds), there were the presents, and the stockings filled! We came home, ate dinner and opened presents. Santa did well for A, R, and H.

Let me pause and tell you a little H story. So she got her stocking, and there was a bag of Goldfish Crackers. That was the end of her Christmas. She proudly carried that bag all around the house, and finally about 30 minutes later got A to open it for her, and she sat and ate them one at a time until she lost interest. No cares about the rest of the presents, so R opened them for her.

k, back to the story. However, under the tree there was not much for me. There was stuff I bought myself, an IOU from A and something R made at school, but nothing from Santa. I thought I must have been naughty, but I thought I was a good least this last month or two!

After the girls went to bed I was on facebook and saw this from my brother:

B: Santa got into the liquor that the parents left on the coffee table...
December 25 at 12:45pm

so of course I called home. Apparently, according to my dad, Santa saw my moms collection of Rum (I think...I don't remember what all she has any more, I only visit twice a year!) on the clock table which is where she keeps the nativity set that Santa always has to put Baby Jesus in when he visits, and helped himself. He left a note there saying something along the lines of "thanks for the special treat! Most people leave out cookies and milk but Santa appreciates a little nip here and there, especially on such a cold night!" Mom said he had more than "just a little nip"

Well that makes sense! Since they are an hour behind us, he left the note here, then there, and since our presents were still on the sleigh, and he was a little tipsy, when Rachel said some presents had fallen off, mine must have been some of those! Hopefully Rachel and FQS can help replenish what should have been mine! Have any of you who live west of Montana (or Washington since that's where he was drinking) seen packages with my name on them?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Let's make a Kindness Quilt

alright, I think I got enough "Yes's" that we'll try this out!

So let's make Julie's Brother and Sister-in-law a kindness quilt to help them and keep them strong for their little boy! (and maybe he can use it when his quilt needs washing)

For those of you who are just joining us, we are making quilt blocks to put together for Julie of Jaybird Quilts family. Her nephew was diagnosed with Leukemia and while she made a wonderful quilt for him, I wanted to do something for the family too and came up with the idea for a kindness quilt for his parents, since they will be spending time with him wherever he needs to go for treatments and who knows how long they will have to be away from home themselves.

Here's what I'd love to see from interested people:

*A six inch (finished so 6 1/2 unfinished) block of any style
*Bright/cheerful colors
*NO Fusible/raw edge applique (I want this quilt to be able to be washed, used, and abused and I am always a little nervous about doing that with applique, I might be wrong, but don't want to chance it!)
*A 2" scrap with your name, a short thought or prayer for the family...something that I can use on the back sort of as an over sized label when all together. This is only if you wish, I won't exclude your block because you didn't do this.

*anything else you wish to include. I'd love to see this not only as a quilt but a little care package for everyone in Elijah's family, himself included but that's just above and beyond, very far from an expectation.

When you are ready to mail, leave me a comment, or if you are a no-reply blogger, shoot me an e-mail at and I will give you my address.

Any questions, comments concerns?

Now go spread the word. There may be a giveaway in store for those who send in a block!

*edited- I forgot to come up with a deadline...let's try and have all the blocks in the mail to me by the end of Jan, OR let me know one is coming by the end of Jan, and get it to me as soon as you can thereafter!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

just a thought

Do any of you read Jaybird's blog? She is a wonderful young (I think shes a year or two older than me so I think I am REALLY young) designer. And from what I can gather via her blog and the giveaway of hers I won ages ago, I think she's a very kind person. The kind of gal you'd want to be friends with (and maybe raid her stash here and there)

She recently mentioned how her nephew has cancer, and she made him a quilt to brighten his stay at the Hospital. I have been thinking about it since. Now I make quilts for Seattle Children's, for their sick children already, but there was something else I have been chewing on, since she does seem like such a lovely lady and I want to do something for her and her family.

So here's what I was thinking: Since her nephew is so young, I am sure a parent is with him as much as possible, if not all the time, they might need some TLC too. I was wondering if anyone would want to make a block for a kindness quilt. I was thinking about 6" blocks that were creators choice, maybe with a 2 1/2" piece of fabric with the creators name, or a kind word to put on the back of the quilt. The only thing I am not sure about is raw edge/fuse able applique, I was considering asking people not to use it for their so that the quilt could be used and abused, and loved.

If this were to come together, I would send it out to be quilted, in fact I THINK a few people who read my blog are professional quilters (Therica, JoAnne) and might be able to make room for a project. I also would love to add a few extra "grown up" things, like I have a whole bunch of books that I might never get to re-reading. And I work at Starbucks, I could mark out some coffee. (and I am sure unused toys, books, things for him or his baby sister would be appreciated as well but again anything beyond a quilt block, heck even a block would be a blessing)

So anyone interested? I was thinking of e-mailing Rachel (of ps. I quilt) to see if I could post something on her blog, and maybe word could get out. but I wanted to check with you all first and see if it's something to pursue. If it's a go, I want to get started ASAP!

Monday, December 20, 2010

giveaway to check out

I HAD to enter this giveaway, look at those LOVELY fabrics!!
I didn't WANT to share, but it was one of the rules to enter, so I guess I have to. (click the picture to get to the giveaway if I did it right.

unrelated, H's quilt is ready for binding but I wanted to make the girls bindings match and need to go get a little more. Darn right? Today I will head out for it. who cares about all the snow that fell last night and all the ice under it!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

DEC FNSI take 2

Well, I had a good friday night.

I picked up the living room, A vacuumed for me.
I finished working with the cookie dough. I hav eto bake the cookies but I was able to roll stuff into balls and roll up my pinwheels. R wants to help so I did as much as I could without her. She will put them on the tray and count them.
I got H's Dora quilt basted and just over 1/2 way quilted.

And I wraped presents.

Good friday night, even if I didn't sew as much as I'd have liked, it was all fun stuff

Thursday, December 16, 2010

you know you're a quilter if:

I am sure some of you have seen this already, but my aunt just sent it to me (she's not a quilter)

You Know you are a Quilter If...
There's more fabric in the house than food
"Fat Quarters" are not the heaviest part of your body
Your ironing board is always set up but you never iron clothes
You think of your job as an interruption of your quilting time
You pet fabric
People are always picking threads off you
You can measure a scant 1/4 by eye
"Featherweight" doesn't mean boxer
Your "UFO's" are not from outer space
You clean up your sewing room & they think you are leaving!

Monday, December 13, 2010

one picture for you

So R did something, and the camera worked for a little bit, I got one picture for you guys. It's the quilt I worked on during the FNSI. It's not all together, but you can see what I am doing with it. The border is what threw me off, but I found just enough more fabric to make some more green and cream patches. (I am out of the cream now. well, I have a LITTLE but can't get a 3" cut from it). I laid out what I have done (the center is done) and my plan for the border, not yet done. As soon as I have time to play with the machine (the girls should be good today, neither took a nap and R had school so she should go to bed early) I will sew the borders, and hopefully get them on.
When it's not FREEZING outside and I charge the batteries on the camera I will take some pics of the items I am committing to for Myra's PHD challenge again this year. All of them (except this one here) are finished tops. I need a little nudge to get them quilted and bound. I love doing bindings, but HATE the quilting part. Only because I don't baste perfectly and it's not as exciting as seeing a quilt come together. I also need to get a better shot of that little strip in this quilt. It's cute!

Friday, December 10, 2010

dec FNSI #1

I think I am calling it a night early. I want to wrap some presents before A gets home from work and I have to go to bed (OK, I go to bed WAY before he comes home but still)

I almost have a top done to donate, I am sort of at a creative stand still. I want to do one neat border but I don't have quite enough to do what I thought of in the first place. I am trying to come up with an alternative. I think I wore out the creative juices for the night.

The top is pink, cream, and green. Four patches that became bigger blocks (12 4 patches per "block") and I have four "blocks" with a very thin border between them. Quite girly. I need to make somethign more masculine!

Next week there's another one. I have stuff for the family planned for that one.

I am thinking of borrowing someones camera to take some pics soon. I also plan on taking all my tops out to my folks house so we can go to a fabric warehouse and get backings for less than normal prices. I should have three, maybe four ready by then.

night all!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010


Just so you don't think it's all flowers and kisses here, Here's a story about R

H was already in bed after fighting it for a little while. I have learned she needs a timer to keep me from going in too quickly, I set it for 10 minutes after her crying starts and if it hasn't worn down or if she's escalated then I go in and we try again latter. Most the time she's out or close to worn out by the time 10 minutes is up....

R was REALLY fighting going to bed. She had woken up at 5:30AM on my ONE day to sleep in this week (remember I am usually at work by 5am) and had school, and it was going on 11 and I had to work in the morning, yup, 5AM. I snapped at her.

she ran out into the hallway

and cried. I let her have a few minutes to herself (and took deep breaths myself) then I went out to her.

"R, what's wrong?"
"I want my own."
"your own what?"
"well honey, you have your own parents. Daddy and I are your parents."
"I don't want you, I want NEW parents."

oh really? I actually found this funny, but she's FOUR!

she finally fell asleep on the floor in my bedroom at about 11:45 while watching Tom and Jerry.

p.s. I am so sick of sitting at my sewing machine! Anyone else feeling over committed for Christmas gifts? I was going to quilt H's quilt, but that just doesn't sound pleasant. I am going to do some crossstich tonight and give it a rest and maybe tomorrow will be back at it.

Monday, December 06, 2010

being heard

Today, as I was sewing some fabric that was gifted to me into a quilt top that I plan to give to Seattle Children's Hospital, R came and sat down next to me (I have been using the kitchen table, so she was sitting in her spot while I was sitting in mine with the machine) and asked who I was making the quilt for.

I answered simply "sick children who are in a hospital away from their bedrooms and favorite things."

She asked to go visit them to make them happy.

I told her when she's older she can volunteer for the hospital or organise a collection drive, but for now she can just pray for the children.

She said she wanted to make the kids happy NOW. And then she looked down at her crayon and paper and said "can I give them coloring?"

I thought she meant can she send them things she drew, so I said "no" and somehow was trying to explain that kids wouldn't want something she drew without hurting her feelings when she interrupted me...

"No mommy, I give them COLORS" (lifting up her crayon and shaking it at me.) "I use my "sharing" money to go to the store and give them colors. Please?"

Ahhhh, sometimes the lessons I am trying to teach are being heard!

(I have one quilt done to donate, one top done, one top that needs one more border but I can't decide yet, the one seam flying geese that I need to go buy more brown for, and one the one I just started today! I think I need to start quilting these things but all I know how to do is stitch in the ditch, and thats dull)

Friday, December 03, 2010

10 totaly random thoughts!

sorry for all the posts lately. I opened on Monday, off at 1:30pm, then had Tues, and Weds off, closed yesterday (and didn't have to be in until 2:30! usually for a close you have to be there at 1) and have today off. I open the next three or four days so I am enjoying this and knowing it's not common. The girls are behaving much better than normal, a wonder what a semi-structured morning can do for the evening! I really wanted to share some random kiddo/life thoughts for you....very very random, but so fun

1) R went outside to play in the snow but left her snow pants at school on Weds, so today she put on leggings, then sweatpants, boots, a tank top and her coat, then gloves and two hats. Gotta love four. So she's been outside for a while and I don't hear anything. I poke my head out and see her, try to run away before she sees me since it looks like she's having fun, but nope I am caught. She said "mommy, puppy is getting cold, can we come inside please" puppy's getting cold huh? mind you this is a stuffed puppy. So sure. come on inside, take your wet things off, puppy gets a hand towel and R gets the afghan Nana made me oh 10 years ago or so. (I asked for if for Christmas one year from her, and got it the following one and she was so touched that she made every grandchild one, then had to give up big projects because they were too much for her) but it has "holes" so R needs "hot tea" aka hot cocoa. I made it and have snowman marshmallows I bought by accident, a candy cane from the tree AND green sugar sprinkles. Sometimes I can pull a supermom move out!

2) the little song from the Lego Duplo's commercial chokes me up EVERY TIME!! (both girls love the legos and I am not ready for the little ones in the house yet even though I think R would like them)

3) speaking of being choked up, did anyone watch the CBS (I think) Hallmark Hall of Fame Movie special presentation, it was November Christmas this past weekend, I was crying my eyes out! and not only during the movie, because it was the Hallmark special they only showed Hallmark commercials....I balled my eyes out for all those too! I slept well that night (and highly recommend the movie if you can see it!)

4) one of my regulars got two elks and a deer this hunting season, and gave me some elk steaks and ground venison, and sausage of some sort. The city girl in my is a little weired-ed out by the thought of eating deer and elk, the money savvy mom in me is so grateful for free meat! (I have to write a thank you card....)

5) have I ever won a give-away from you? I most likely sent you a thank you card! I know I lost a few addresses here and there but I think I've sent most of them. If you did not get one, I am sorry I am so thankful for your generosity and kindness, most the time people include a card with such kind words! Quilters are GREAT!

6) apparently my small tweek in Nana's Peanut Blossom recipe was a huge hit. A ate 12 plus the night I made them, and after taking 2 dozen out to mail to my brother and his girlfriend and her cousin (who is about to have her first baby, lost her parents a year ago, and is the first in her generation in her family AND her group of friends to have a baby, so I am sending her a little care package) they are all gone now, and I made a double batch!

7) R just said "mommy, this is really good tea" while finishing off her hot cocoa!

8) H is almost really a walker she walks for a while until she realises it and then sits and cawls, and she won't walk to you unless you have somethign she wants and she's standing in the first place. Usually a baby doll or food.

9) it's time to get R re-dressed and ready for school, she loves school and her favorite part is Chapel, and her best friend is T, who is almost as bossy as she is!

10) when R goes to school, it will be H's nap time so I will be sewing!! I SHOULD fold laundry but I am going to sew!

Thursday, December 02, 2010

APQ Swap

hey those of you who were part of the APQ swap...I found the blocks I shoved in the back of my sewing room shelves out of frustration, and started looking at them, I made the last 4, with everything except that border. here's my question...I am not thrilled with them. I am but I am not, my machine and I hate sewing triangles and it "ate" a few corners. The points don't match up all the time, but the colors are fun. I am torn between my desire to send them out because I feel bad waiting this long and wanting to try again knowing my machine and I will end up in tears together (yes, little pfaff throws fits too, it is 14 years old after all, entering those teen years!)

How would you all feel about non-perfect blocks? They are CLOSE just not perfect.

I am sorry it took me so long to get them out! Everyone is getting a little something special with their blocks!

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

math problem

so remember in high school math class, when you were trying not to doze off or play calculator games (the graphing calculators the kids use now you can program games into and play in class making it look like you are doing calculations with the teacher...then again I guess now kids just use their cell phones, but we were not allowed to have them on at school)

The teacher would always say "I know you don't believe me but you will need to know this at some point in your career so pay attention."

and you thought "yeah yeah yeah, I am going to be a singer, actress, journalist, novelist, something else grand and wonderful, I won't need THIS"

Well, I needed my algebra today. For quilting.

if you have 77 blocks and want to make a quilt using as many if not all of the blocks, and you want the quilt to be longer than it is wide, how many rows and columns do you need?

x*y=77 (ish)

so 77 can be 7*11
it could be 8*9+5
it could be 7*10+7 (maybe for the backing I could do a little row)

I am leaning towards the last one, each block is 6 1/2" unfinished, so finished my choices are:
42*66 (I think a little TOO dramatic a difference)
48*54 (dramatic enough?)
or 42*60 (maybe)
oh or I could do 42*54 with 14 for the back and/or a pillow case

I am thinking the last two...what do you think? And are you chuckling over there at me?