Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Flowers and Happiness

If a man had as many ideas during the day as he does when he has insomnia, he'd make a fortune.
~Griff Niblack

I think I have been practicing too many different FMQ designs.  Monday night I woke up thinking about FMQ.  I had had a devil of a time with the practice the previous day and it really must have been haunting me.  For over an hour, every time I shut my eyes I kept seeing the silly design.  My fingers kept trying to come up with the proper direction to go.  Over and over that design came up.  Maybe I should have gotten up and just tried it once again.  I know that you can sometimes solve problems with dreams but this was ridiculous.  I would love a dreamless night - or at least a night where I don't remember the dreams I'm having.  Maybe if the weather would ever cool down I could get a good night's sleep.



Today is S'mores day!!  Doesn't that picture just make your mouth water?  When you go camping there's a lot of things you need s'more of: s'more bug spray, s'more blankets for cold nights in the tent, and s'more batteries in the flashlight before you go trudging through the woods to the bathroom after one of your friends insisted on telling s'more ghost stories. But the fantastic sandwiches of graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallows are the one thing you will be happy to want s'more of.
The name of the treat comes from the two words "some more," clearly combined because people often wanted to have at least a second serving after having one s'more. The treat was developed by campers in the early part of the 20th century, making use of the fairly new mass-produced marshmallows. Marshmallows were easy to transport, as were candy bars and graham crackers, and the marshmallows could be warmed easily over a fire to make a delicious treat in a situation where other types of sweets would have been difficult to come by.
The true origin of the snack is unknown, as camping recipes tended to be passed from person to person and family to family - often over the campfire itself. The first recipe for s'mores was published in 1927 in the Girl Scout Handbook and the event marked the official introduction of the s'more into popular culture.


Over the weekend I made two more hexagon flowers for my Aunt Sarah quilt.

This is one of the background flowers.  The dots you see are not on the fabric but are center holes in the hexagon templates.

Here is my second actual flower for the some-day-to-be quilt.  It seems so strange working in muted colors when making these flowers.


FMQ - DAYS 20 and 21

This was the cause of my lack of sleep on Monday night.  I could go one direction with absolutely no problem.  But to go back the opposite way just caused me all sorts of trouble.  You can tell by just looking at my practice.  Jeesh.....who knew such a simple design could wreck havoc with my brain.  This pattern is called Curvy Key.

These don't really look too much like flames.  You would think with all of the Nascar stuff I watch with DH that flames would come naturally.  Mine look more like the Swiss Alps.  Oh well.  My stitches were more consistent at least.  This practice is called Flame Key.



Over the weekend I made two more flowers for my GFG and for One Flower Wednesday

This flower reminded me of camping.  Aren't the raccoon and opossum cute?  I remember watching the raccoons raid the trash cans outside the cabins we would rent up above Yosemite. 

This flower just said Summer to me.  I know it has hearts and should remind me of Valentine's day but it doesn't.  It made me think of shells at the beach.  Yes, I have a weird mind - lol!
To see more wonderful and creative hexagon flowers, Karen has provided a linky tool where you can pop in to see more.  And drop a thank you to Karen while  you are there for keeping us all motivated and organized!



Yesterday I received a large squishy in the mail.  I saw where it was from and gave a little yelp of glee!

Look at this stack of fat quarters!  23 to be exact.

Our Busy Little Bunch had a giveaway last month that I won!!  A complete set of Hoo's in the Forest by Doohikey Designs for Riley Blake Designs.  Do you realize this is the first time I have ever had a complete set of any line of fabric?  I felt like it was my birthday or Christmas!  I'm having so much fun just looking at all of the gorgeous pieces but don't have the faintest idea what I will be making with it yet.  Thank you so very much, Rebecca!!



Today I will quilt and bind the table runner I am making for my swap partner.



As Sweet As Cinnamon is having a Happy Day giveaway.  Dawn's giveaway is a surprise but she does let us know that it is a craft-y, fabric-y sort of Happy Surprise.  This giveaway ends Sunday, August 15, at 8:00 pm South Australia time.

A Quilting Life is having a sponsored giveaway.  You could win a $50 gift certificate or one of two $25 gift certificates to Shabby Fabrics.  This giveaway ends Friday night, August 12.

Pots and Pins is having a giveaway.  You could win a darling sewing machine clock.  This giveaway ends tonight, Wednesday, August 10, at 9:00 pm.

My and My Sister's Design is having a giveaway.  You could win a fat eighth bundle of “Amelia”.  This giveaway ends Thursday, August 11.

Jolly Jabber is having a giveaway.  You could win a Me & My Sister Designs’ Designer Select Fat Quarter Bundle.  This giveaway ends Monday, August 15.

Pigtales and Quilts is having a giveaway.  You could win a copy of Stupid Is As Stupid Does or a copy of Cooking With Character, both by Bill Griffin.  This giveaway ends Sunday, April 14, at 2:00 pm EST.

Fabric Worm is having their weekly giveaway.  This week you could win Diana Kappa Bonjour in 8 Fat Quarters.  The giveaway ends Monday, August 15, at 8:30 am PST.

Bitty Bits and Pieces is having a giveaway.  You could win a beautiful Quilt Lover's Heart necklace.  This giveaway ends Tuesday, August 16, at midnight.

Love Affair With My Brother is having a giveaway.  You could win a GO! Baby cutter and your choice of 3 dies.  This giveaway ends Thursday, August 18.

And then there's this Blogiversary Giveaway that you still have time to enter.  My giveaway will end Sunday, August 14, at 8:00 pm PST.



I did it again.  I bought another pattern to try out another type of quilt making.  I'm going to try some foundation paper piecing.  I blame this all on Tonya over at Hillbilly Handiworks.  She put the bug in my ear and it just kept buzzing around.  After a couple of days searching on the net, I finally found a pattern I just couldn't pass up.  It's a mountain landscape that just said "buy me!" - and, of course, I did.  It's not here yet but should arrive within the week.  Do any of you have a good source for landscape paper piecing patterns?  Can you recommend a book that might have good patterns?  I'm not talented enough to take a picture of my own and create a pattern from it.  And don't tell me it's easy, because I just don't have an artistic thread in my brain.  I follow patterns with no trouble but as you know from previous posts, I am unable to just wing it.  I can't wait to start something new :)

Optimist: someone who figures that taking a step backward after taking a step forward is not a disaster, it's a cha-cha. 
~Robert Brault


Donna said...

I love the racoons! So cute.

Christine said...

Just love your flowers!

Vesuviusmama said...

I probably shouldn't have read your post before breakfast - I'm here thinking about s'mores, telling myself that I'm on vacation, so it is OK to have a non-traditional breakfast! Lucky you, winning the Hoo's!!! I've never owned awhile line of fabric before either. I'm sure you'll make something marvelous with it, and I'd be surprised if we didn't see some of that fabric in a hexie or two. Happy Hump Day! (which has so much less significance now that I am on vacation)

Gene Black said...

Congrats on a great win. I love your FQ bundle.

I see that you should have been more curvy in the flame design. However, your curvy key is not as bad as you think. I had to look to find the places you "went wrong" on it. Now I am thinking I should use that one too! LOL. I will definitely have to do a practice session before I try it on a quilt.

I am way more of a "wing it" person than a follow the pattern person. I rarely follow a pattern to the letter-- even when it is my own design!

Vroomans' Quilts said...

Love all the hexies, but the animal one is just too cute! You may need a day off from the FMQ if you are dreaming them.

Riel Nason said...

Lucky duck! That is such cute fabric! I LOVE your flower with the animals. The curves in the pattern surrounding the animal faces really look like petals.

Impera_Magna said...

Love the Curvy Key but can see that it would be a challenge to go in different directions doing it... you're inspiring me... you really are!

corina said...

Your hexie blocks are always so lovely! If I have trouble with a free motion design, I draw it on paper (sometimes sheets of it). Something about your hands have memory and if you repeatedly draw the design it will be easier to sew it. I'm almost done a foundation pieced landscape pattern by Cynthia England. She has lots of patterns. I have her book too (Picture Piecing). It's not so much a pattern book as a how to do your own patterns. I like it for inspiration.

Mommarock said...

I wonder if it would help on that FMQ pattern if you thought of writing the upper case letter S flowing into the upper case letter P curve back into an upper case S.. just in a strange way.. you are writing the s from the bottom then move to the top of the P back to the bottom of the S.. maybe it will help with the flow.

Barbara said...

Lucky girl, such great wins. Love the fat quarters, some have a retro look to me. Also, as always, drooling over your FMQ skills!

Barb said...

Yes, you are lucky, wonderful fabrics...don't you just hate it when your life enters you dreams and won't let it go.....hope you get some rest tonight.

Trying to lose weight, that picture did not help much!! Ummmm Ummmm good.

Staci said...

Your 'camping' hexie is a delight!
Had a giggle about the FMQ insomnia. I've done that, too. And I can't conquer that one pattern either.

WoolenSails said...

Love the new hexagons and your practice pieces. I really need to play with free motion and practice, but I need to finish off two quilts, so guess they will be my practice, when I am up to it.


Karen said...

Some great new fabric and as always, I love your flowers!

Jessica said...

I'm totally taking inspiration from your hexagon flowers now that I have an Acuuquilt, lol! And as much as FMQ practice is helpful, maybe you need a break? ;)

Em said...

YOur posts are always so yummy and so much inspiration packed in to them!!!!!!!!!!!!! Love the fmq designs and understand the distraction of them!!!!!!!! Linda, if you are interested in being a part of the collaborative blog for fmq learning curve, just let me know. Would love your energy posting on it if you ever have an interest. Thank you for inspiring me before I head to the wilderness!!!!! Love, EM

Needled Mom said...

Okay....those little hexie flowers with the raccoons are so stinkin' cute!!!! Nice work on all of them.

Did you see that they have come out with square marshmallows for smores? Creative mind there!!

What a wonderful win! I am sure you will come up with a terrific project for it.

I love to paper piece, but I don't know of any landscape patterns. Have you checked Carol Doak's site?

I would gladly trade our cool nights with you. It has been down into the upper 40s here and I am about ready to put the electric blanket back on my bed. Winter will be here before we know it.

Your fmq looks like fun, but I can see where I would have the same problem as I try to reverse my brain.

Enjoy the day ahead!

Melody said...

I adore your One Flower Wednesday hexies. Congratulations on your fabulous win. No one deserves it more.

Maria said...

Oh and I thought you were so good to get the spot in the centre of the flower!!!
Gorgeous hexies and my favorites this week are the racoons and hearts.
Your FMQ is looking really good.
Enjoy your fabulous fabric win.

sunny said...

I owe you a huge apology, Linda. Your posts take me in so many directions - shopping, signing up for giveaways, etc. that i often forget to come back and comment! Your first quote today is the story of my life right now. Your new fabric is sooo yummy, and your flowers are beautiful. I love that we're both doing Aunt Sara, although I'm doing my own interpretation. THanks for another wonderful post.

Teresa Felgueiras said...

Beautiful flowers. I love the raccoon and the "summer" ones.
Congratulations on your win. The fat quarters are wonderful.Enjoy them!

quiltzyx said...

What a wonderful, giant squishie you won! I've never had an entire line of fabrics either, but I keep entering to win one too. :D

Every time I see some of your terrific hexie flowers I think that I would like to do some of those...then I come back to my senses. LOL

OH! I have been craving s'mores for about 2 months now. I have been avoiding the "marshmallow" aisle at the market because I know if I get some, I will be eating s'mores for dinner....

The Vegetarian Hunter said...

I was pleasantly surprised to see that Superstore (Canada's largest grocery store) has S'more kits you can now buy for your camping needs! Very convenient. ha ha. For some reason though, I just do not like them - I love all those components on their own, but you put them together and they are suddenly just too much for me!
Your one flower Wednesday with the possum and raccoons is definetly my favorite - adorable.

I saw the santa mug rug you made and sent out to your swap partner - Good job!! It looks fantastic!

Sarah Craig said...

First of all, good advice for learning a new FMQ design is to doodle it on paper - over and over and over and over - and you can do that in bed if it wakes you up!! It does help to get the correct motions down...

And have you ever tried S'mores made with saltines and dark chocolate? They are delicious, and about half the fat and calories of the originals - plus that little tang of salt makes the marshmallows taste sweeter (don't ask me why!)

And I love your hexies - you've really stepped it up this week!! They are all so cute!!

Sheila said...

Congratulations! Very nice collection of fabrics. Lucky you!

Talin's Corner said...

Yes, it makes my mouth water. How could you make me suffer like this? S'mores are my kids favorite treats. And congrats on your win. Lucky you!

Stray Stitches said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tonya said...

The little forest animals flower is wonderful!!!

I bought just a couple of fat quarters in that line of fabric. That was all YOUR fault. Really it was. I was thinking how I could fussy cut them. You will most likely beat me to it.

I cannot draw at all. Not a bit. So I have to buy patterns.

Jane said...

Oh my! I dream about quilting too! I think it's called obsession. Your hexie flowers are great. So neat & precise. I find myself having to kind of make mine fit some times. Nothing wrong with your fmq either!

Seams to Sew and Quilt said...

Lucky you, that fabric is so cute. I love your quote today too.
The little hexi raccoons are adorable. I can't wait for cooler night too, but I like remembering my dreams. Most of them are crazy or silly but I like to remember them.
Have a wonderful day.

Quiltingranny said...

Can you believe, I have never had a S'More? Nope, not one. I know I keep saying I will, but I haven't. Your hexies are beautiful and your FMQ is amazing. Thanks so much for sharing your life with us!

Snoodles said...

The hexie with the lil critters is so cute...I'm still giggling over the definition of an optimist! I bet you will do great with PPiecing! (I'm not so hot, but you really do the precision stuff so well!)

suemac said...

You are a lucky ducky. Those hexies look time-consuming.

Belinda said...

I must say your Hexies are just is that fabric you won!!!

Quiltjane said...

I love the hexie with the little critters on it and congratulations for your big win ( 23 delightful FQ's).

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