Monday, July 25, 2011

Little Finishes


The willingness to accept responsibility for one's own life is the source from which self-respect springs. 
~Joan Didion

Whew!  I'm sort of glad the weekend is over.  Saturday's running was not pleasant in the heat.  We were glad to find that our Walmart had finally finished it's remodel.  However, some of the shelves still needed restocking so selection was limited in some area.  Luckily every store we entered had sufficient A/C.  It was going back outside that was the killer.  And then having to enter the baking car.  We were drained by the end of the afternoon.  Sunday was full of washing - both dogs and a weeks worth of dirty clothes, sheets, and towels.  All of that added to the humidity in the house that was already fairly high for the day.  I'm ready for the new week to start.  I have several swap and bee blocks to make so I know where my energy will be spent.  Do you have your week planned out?

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PHOTO FACT OF THE DAY


Needle And Thread

Did you know that today is considered Threading The Needle Day?  Sometimes it feels like it can take a whole day to get thread into that tiny little eyehole in the needle, but that's not why today was created. While sewing is encouraged today, and every day for that matter, this holiday is also about metaphorically threading the needle. This means to walk a fine line between two issues or be stuck in the middle of an argument between two friends. Yeah' that sounds like hard work. We'd rather just stick to sewing.  So how about a little bit of history on the needle. 
* The first sewing needles were made from bone and were used to sew animal hides together. The oldest known bone ones were found in what is now southwestern France and has been estimated to be over 25,000 years old.
* Bookbinders and shoemakers used ones made from hog bristles in the Middle Ages.
* Metal needles were handcrafted before the industrial age. The process began with cutting wire long enough to make two needles. Then points were ground on either end of the wire, the wire was flattened in the middle and eyes punched out. The needles were then separated. This operation is still followed today, but machines now do the work instead of humans.

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MUG RUG SWAP

Last week I received a wonderful Christmas mug rug......

from Irene in Texas.  We are swap partners in a mug rug swap being hosted by Christmas Quilting Block Swaps Australia.  Irene personalized this mug rug with my name and did some darling embroidered flowers and a redwork Christmas Tree.  She also included a snapshot of the mug rug, some great I Spy squares and a darling hexagon flower.  Thank you so very much, Irene.

I wasn't as quick as Irene was in making my mug rug........

Friday I finished up this little Santa mug rug.  This mug rug measures 6.25" X 10".  Maybe you recognize some of the fabric I used from the Kate Spain line of 12 Days of Christmas.  This is the second project I have used satin stitching around the applique.  I was much happier with this one as I have learned since the failure first one to use a stabilizer behind the fabric for satin stitching.  I used a lightweight tear-away and it made all the difference in the world.  I don't know why the binding along the top looks irregular in size because it really isn't.  This little Santa pattern came from Fat Cat Patterns and I reduced it down to the size I wanted.  This will be going out in today's mail with a couple of little extras for Irene.

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FMQ - DAY 9

Friday's FMQ practice was different......
I'm not sure if it was fun or not.  Leah calls this one Tree Bark.  I can see where this would be useful when you have a tree you want to accent.  I'm not sure mine looks anything like tree bark with knots in it.  Oh well, on more day under my belt.

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GARDENER'S JOURNAL

Friday was a day of completions.  I also finished another stitchery block for A Gardener's Journal quilt.

I love the look of these three ladies ready to attend their flower show.  This block is called Annual Garden Show and will end up to be 6.5" X 8.5".  The different body shapes are quite amusing :)

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TODAY'S GOAL

Today I need to make a couple of swap blocks and possibly a couple Bee blocks, too.

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GIVEAWAYS
Cara Quilts is having a giveaway.  You could win a GO! Baby Cutter and 3 dies.  This giveaway ends Sunday, August 7.
 
 
Butterfly Quilting is having a giveaway.  Flo is ready to send the Traveling Stash on it's way again.  Not sure when this giveaway ends.


The Intrepid Thread is having a giveaway.  You could win a $25 gift certificate to her store.  This giveaway ends Friday, July 29, at midnight.

Little Miss Shabby is having a giveaway.  You could win a GO! Baby Cutter and three dies.  This giveaway ends Tuesday, July 26.

The Shabby is having a giveaway.  You could be the winner of a $100 gift certificate or one of two $50 gift certificates.  This giveaway ends ?

Fort Worth Fabric Studio is having their 2nd July giveaway.  You could win The Practical Guide To Patchwork by Elizabeth Hartman or 2 Fig Tree Patterns.  This giveaway ends Wednesday, July 27, at 9:00 pm CST.

Pieceful Life is celebrating her one year blogiversary.  You could win one of two moda charm packs.  This giveaway ends Thursday, July 28.

Samelia's Mum is having a giveaway.  You could win one of four Sewline Fabric Glue Pen.  This giveaway ends Sunday, July 31, at 7:00 pm AEST.

Needles and Pins is having a giveaway.  You could win some Flurry fabric by Kate Spain, some red, green, and blue floss, and a copy of "God's Guidance at Dawn" by Mary Light.  This giveaway ends Saturday, August 6.

Aunt Polly's Porch is having a giveaway.  Here's another chance to win a GO! Baby cutter and 3 dies.  This giveaway ends Wednesday, July 27, at 9:00 pm EST. 

Super Mom - No Cape is having a giveaway.  She ready to send the second Traveling Stash on its way.  This giveaway ends Friday, July 29.

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FINAL THOUGHT

As we head into a new week we are also closing in on the end of another month. I like the idea of Monday's - a fresh start, a new beginning. It's hard to believe that July will soon be gone and that we are moving that much closer to the end of another year. Thankfully it will mean we are that much closer to cooler weather. But here that really won't happen until around mid October. We are now heading into the dog days of August. A month that usually brings hot days and very warm nights. A month when our air looks more brown than blue and when we rarely see surrounding mountains. But, on the bright side, it's a good reason to stay inside. Inside where it is cool and I can spend time sewing and stitching. I'm ready for Monday - plans are made and creating is a'waiting. Here I come sewing room!

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.
~Herm Albright

32 comments:

Sarah Craig said...

Great post - but the quote at the end is priceless! Hope you have a wonderful, cool week!!

sunny said...

I like the idea of summer, but not the heat! We haven't even been to the beach this year. Thanks for the history lesson on needles. Have a fun week, and get some sewing done.

Impera_Magna said...

The tree bark quilting is interesting... I can see a couple uses for that design.

The heat is awful this time of year... NC has set new records for high temps for X number of days in a row. I run errands at the crack o' dawn then stay inside the rest of the day...

Christine said...

We had record temps this past weekend, so I went to visit my sisters who live in a cooler area of LI. I love your quotes have copied some of the to keep on my desk at work. Please have a wonderful day!

LynCC said...

Love the Santa! That satin stitching looks incredible on him.

Karen said...

I really enjoyed today's post and the quotes. Now, I'm going to go thread my needle!

Have a great day.

Karen

Osage Bluff Quilter said...

If your Wal-mart is like ours you will hate the remodeling. They now have wider isles and carry less products. All their brands are in whie labels. No more fabric either.
Happy monday!
Patti

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Great post again Linda. Just love your mug rugs - received and to be sent. The Gardenter's Journal ladies are just adorable - yes, I think I recognize one of those shapes! And a great ending quote that makes my day.

Megan Harmeyer said...

I really don't mind working in the clinic during the summer because it is much cooler than the house. LOL Your little Santa mug rug is cute!

krisgray said...

Your Santa is very cute. Thanks for the stabilizer tip. I will remember that next time I do applique.

Needled Mom said...

Can you imagine the first needle? I love inventive people.

Your mug rugs are wonderful. I love the little Santa and your applique looks great. Your swap one you received is lovely too.

It is hard to imagine that July is quickly coming to a close. I notice the days are getting shorter. We have a lot of tropical clouds here today. We were in SF for the weekend and it was chilly up there - foggy and windy.

Your gardening girls are adorable!!!!

Have fun working on your blocks this week. I can't wait to see what you do.

Seams to Sew and Quilt said...

Linda your garden ladies are so cute and what perfect stitches you do. Love the little Santa too.
Have a wonderful day.

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

Yes July is almost over, but that means that Christmas is just around the corner :-S

Pokey said...

Both of these mug rugs are cute, good job on your Santa one. I'm glad to know stabilizer works well, the problem is it's one more thing to buy and store, huh?
Oh, well, I'll stay positive with you Linda, and maybe we'll bug the heck out of those other hot (grouchy) people, lol

Barb said...

Your final thought hit me like a ton of bricks....the end of one month and the beginning of another,, where did the time go? Love your Santa mug rug....and stitcheries.

Jessica said...

I love the mug rugs and your Santa came out perfect!! It's so cute!

Staci said...

I'd like to hang out with those flower show gals! They look like lots of fun! Love your final quote!
This week I am going to knock out all my swap and bee commitments. We I wrote down how many I had to do, I had to stop and wonder if I need to be committed! But it is such fun to belong to these groups.

Anne said...

Irene did a great job on the crazy-patched mug rug. Love the redwork inset. The satin-stitched Santa is adorable! The bright blue mittens were the perfect touch, too. So sweet! Great job on the "tree bark," too!

Cheryl said...

Happy Monday Linda. Your Santa mug rug and stitchery gals are just the cutest!

Joanna said...

Very cute projects. The mug rugs look great. Fun to make and very useful.

Raewyn said...

Your GJ stitchery block is gorgeous! As you say the varying shapes are interesting and very realistic - sigh!! I have a project where I tried the satin stitch without stabiliser and it wasn't pretty!! need to make a restart on that one! Your Santa mugrug is lovely - what a fun idea they all are. I'm pleased too that the current needle was invented and we aren't still struggling with bone! Hope you stay cool today!!

Fiona@BubzRugz said...

Excellent reading as always... I love both mug rugz and your stitching is awesome....
Hugz

Barbara said...

I knew your FMQ piece was a tree before I read any of the stitching or what you posted. It just looks like one andI love it!!!

Nancy said...

hi Linda,

I keep meaning to tell you that I'm very impressed with your machine quilting. I really need to practice some of that myself. One of these days...

Tonya said...

Ok, so you have caused me to go start following that FMQ blog. I need so much work in this area!

I hate accepting responsibility for my actions. Can't I blame it on the kids or something??

Barbara said...

I just love your gardening ladies. Great shoes! Your FM is looking great too.

Madame Samm said...

love love love your stitching ladies Linda...my kind of thing...very clever indeed...off and running today..wanted to drop and say hi...

Sue said...

Another fabulous post! (As usual) But I had to give special thanks for the first quote. I've heard phrased differently, but this is a "must remember". Also, those stitched ladies are A.D.O.R.A.B.L.E.!!! Did you create them? Is there a way to get a pattern? I really, I mean REALLY, love them!

quiltzyx said...

You did get some lovelies from your swap partner & she's sure to love that little Santa!! He is sooo cute. :D

Sara said...

Your Santa is too cute:)

Love the ladies together as well and thanks for sharing the needle story.

Did you enter my giveaway?

http://joyineverythingthruhim.blogspot.com/2011/07/celebrating-yes-still-and-who-wouldnt.html

BunkHouseQuilts said...

Hi, I am new to your blog, I saw you over on Sarah's Whoop, Whoop Friday. I have really enjoyed reading everything. Love the ladies in your stitchery!

FabricsNQuilts said...

LOVE your Santa, and your garden ladies are adorable!
Whoop Whoop!

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