Saturday, April 30, 2011

Giveaway Reminder :)

Today and Sunday (April 30 and May 1) are the last two days to enter my Help Me Celebrate With A Giveaway!

You could win these 10 fat quarters.....

This giveaway ends Sunday, May 1, at 8:00 pm PST.

But DO NOT ENTER HERE.  You must go leave a comment through the above link or HERE

Friday, April 29, 2011


Every week the Quilting Gallery holds a weekly themed quilt contest.  This weeks theme is Made With Charms. 

I decided to enter one of my quilts this time.....

This quilt is called Butter Churn.  It was the first time I had used a charm pack to make a quilt.  Really!  Would you believe that was only this past January? 

Take a visit over to the Quilting Gallery and take a look at all of the beautiful quilts that have been entered this week.  If can't decide which one to vote for, you can always throw your vote my way :)  Thanks!!

It's Two Of Two

If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant; if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.
~Anne Bradstreet

It's Friday.  The last Friday of the month.  Only today and tomorrow left in April.  It's almost time to start a new month.  Where did the time go?  Spring arrived and is now ready to give way to summer.  Winter is but a memory - well, at least  here in central California.  All the trees are green, the tulips have faded, and buds are forming on the rose bushes.  I've completed a few projects and started others.  I broke an old habit and hopefully won't start another.  Ebb and flow, inhale and exhale - life continues.  As we wrap up another month think about the happiness you have shared with others, about what those little things that may have brought a smile to your face.  Tuck these memories away for another time, perhaps when you need a little joy in your life in May.




National Zipper Day, marking the day in 1913 when the zipper was patented in the United States. Coincidentally, this came just moments before the first known utterance of the words "Larry, barn door's open."  Simpler than the snap and more trusted than Velcro, the zipper beats the button any day. Unless the slider gets stuck on some fabric on the way up, the zipper is the fastest clothing and luggage fastener in the west! The zipper beat out the button in the 1937 'Battle of the Fly' when designers went crazy for the newest innovation in men's trousers. Esquire magazine predicted the zipper would reduce the incidence of accidentally leaving one's fly open, but as years of jeans wearing have revealed, there's no invention that can save us from making that mistake.



Yesterday I completed the second baby quilt....

All rolled and ready for the unveiling......

Blowing in the wind......
As you can see, the second of the twins is named Julia....

Both of the quilts revealing their backsides.....

Battling for dominance already.....

The yin and the yang, the light and the dark.  Both quilts are ready for the two adorable, little redheaded twins, Grace and Julia.



Today I will start on the May mini wall hanging that I'm already late in making.



Eat, Sleep, Quilt is having a giveaway.  You could win one of two amazing little quilts that Linda has created.  This giveaway ends Sunday, May 1, at 11:30 pm EST.

Want It, Need It, Quilt It is having a sponsored giveaway.  You could win a a selection of indigenous prints.  This giveaway ends May 31st.

The Intrepid Thread is celebrating her 200th post with a giveaway.  You could win a half yard bundle of Happier In Blue AND a circle / dot print from each of 6 lines that are coming soon to her shop AND A
a fat quarter bundle of blue and green Silent Cinema AND a kit to make her button bracelet tutorial.  This great giveaway ends Friday, May 6, at midnight.

Hawthorne Threads is having their weekly giveaway.  You could win an Amy Butler Diana Sling bag.  A winner will be selected Wednesday, May 4.

Quilt Story is having a giveaway.  Here's your chance to win a GO! Baby cutter and three dies.  This giveaway ends Wednesday, May 4, at 11:59 pm MST.

Stray Stitches is celebrating her MY first big completion of the year.  You could win 10 fat quarters of some very pretty floral fabric.  You better hurry, this giveaway ends Sunday, May 1, at 8:00 pm PST.



With a sad heart I have been watching all of the news reports on the destruction that has taken place across the country from me.  I can not begin to fathom what those people are going through.  So many lives have been lost and so many more are now homeless and/or injured.  Nature can be so cruel and unforgiving.  Hopefully the healing can begin soon, power restored and shelter provided for those who are in need.  It makes me appreciate my life just that much more.  It makes me realize that no matter what we invent or what we create, nature will have the upper hand.  We have seen this through the power of the earthquakes in Japan, the hurricanes in the Gulf, and now the tornadoes and torrential rains in the central and southern part of our country.  May those of you who have been affected by these terrible events know that you are being remembered in our prayers and thoughts.  May your lives return to normal soon.

Hope is the word which God has written on the brow of every man.
~Victor Hugo

Think happy thoughts, for it is Friday!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A Wide Range Of Emotions

I have often lamented that we cannot close our ears with as much ease as we can our eyes.
~Richard Steele

So much for my quiet days of last week.  Last week the school across the street was on Easter break so there were very few cars going down our street.  No buses bouncing through the pot holes.  Only the daily visit of the mailman.  This week all of that noise is back.  My noise pollution is made up of the diesel engines of the buses and delivery trucks.  And the daily visit of the bass from a stereo blasting from a car as they wait for their child to be out of class.  In addition to all that, they have started working on the house next door.  It has finally sold after a year of being empty.  The previous owners walked away but only after leaving the inside in need of much repair.  So now I also listen to a nail gun and an electric saw, not to mention the dropping of wood and occasional loud voices.  The lovely sounds of construction.  Oh, and don't forget the daily barrage of car alarms that all of the teacher's cars seem to have.  No wonder the mocking birds around here can mimic that sound so well - lol!




National Karaoke Week is celebrated the fourth week of April. How is it celebrated? Easy! You go out and sing or even better, purchase a karaoke machine.
There are various disputes about who first invented the name karaoke. One claim is that the karaoke styled machine was invented by Japanese musician Daisuke Inoue in Kobe, Japan, in 1971. After becoming popular in Japan, karaoke spread by Hideo to East and Southeast Asia during the 1980s and subsequently to other parts of the world.
In Japan, it has long been common to provide musical entertainment at a dinner or a party. Japanese drummer Daisuke Inoue was asked frequently by guests in the Utagoe Kissa, where he performed, to provide a recording of his performance so that they could sing along on a company-sponsored vacation. Realizing the potential for the market, Inoue made a tape recorder that played a song for a 100-yen coin. Instead of giving his karaoke machines away, Inoue leased them out so that stores did not have to buy new songs on their own. Originally, it was considered a somewhat expensive fad, as it lacked the live atmosphere of a real performance and 100 yen in the 1970s was the price of two typical lunches, but it caught on as a popular entertainment. Karaoke machines were initially placed in restaurants and hotel rooms; soon, new businesses called karaoke boxes, with compartmented rooms, became popular. In 2004, Daisuke Inoue was awarded the tongue-in-cheek Ig Nobel Peace Prize for inventing karaoke, "thereby providing an entirely new way for people to learn to tolerate each other."



Yesterday I received an envelope from my Block Swap Adventure swap partner for April.

Charlene made me TWO blocks.  Aren't they wonderful?  I just love the pattern and the fabrics she used.  When I first saw them they immediately reminded me of a summer picnic.  Thank you so very much, Charlene!!



Don't hate me, but yesterday I received another squishy with a something I had won last week.

Staci, from The Confused Quilter, had a giveaway featuring B. Bumble & Co. patterns and I won this fantastic pattern called The Shop Hopper.  Linda Winters designs such cute patterns but I think this is my absolute favorite and can't wait to make it up.  Thank you, Staci!!!


Yesterday I received an envelope that I wasn't expecting.
As a thank you for sending them my star blocks for the Just One Star project, Moda sent a little thank you card and a little packet of 2 1/2 inch squares.  That certainly was unexpected but much appreciated.



On March 13, 2011, I won a giveaway from Material Girls Quilts.  I was thrilled.  It was the first time I had won a fat quarter bundle.  This is what was pictured with the giveaway blog....
It wasn't exactly specified which one you would win but stated there would be three winners.  I kept waiting for the package to arrive.  I contacted one of the other winners as we are blogging friends - she hadn't received hers either.  We began emailing Material Girls (separately) and received back an assortment of different excuses.  Nothing for over a month. We sent of 5 emails each.  Finally, on Monday, I received a plain brown envelope with no return address.  It looked a little dubious but I opened it.  Inside was this....

7 fat quarters - coordinated by color but not by designer or company.  Now I don't know about you, but I was expecting one of the first fat quarter bundles pictured above.  I think they finally sent me these in an attempt to shut me up.  They were probably tired of receiving my emails.  I don't usually complain and will shrug off something if it never appears.  But to picture something that you are giving away and then have it be nothing like that is basically lying.  It's deceptive and could be considered fraud.  (See Sharon's blog, Vrooman's Quilts, for further information about the legal side.) 
I hope none of you ever have something like this happen to you.  But if you do, don't just sit on it.  Let your voice be heard.  It is the only way to prevent others from doing something similar.



Yesterday evening I put the final stitches in another Baltimore Block....

This is block 3.  I had a little trouble with the points on the pineapple tops but I'm still pleased with how it turned out.  I'm definitely still on the learning curve for hand applique.  I have been using the glue stick method but I think I might try the starch method for the next block.



Today I will finish the baby quilt. All I have to do is sew on the binding and then hand stitch it.



The Raspberry Rabbit is having a celebration giveaway.  To help celebrate 700 followers they are giving away several different books.  This giveaway ends Sunday, May 1.

Just One More Stitch is having a giveaway.  You could win a jelly roll of your choice from 1 Choice 4 Quilting.  This giveaway ends Sunday, May 1.

Jackie's Art Quilts is having a giveaway.  Jackie is giving away 5 beautiful fat quarters.  The winner will be drawn on Thursday, May 5.

Diary Of A Quilter is having a sponsored giveaway.  Jackie from Canton Village Quilts is giving away a fat quarter bundle of Art Gallery Oval Elements collection.  This giveaway ends Sunday, May 1, at midnight MST.

Blacksheep's Bit Of The Web is celebrating her fourth year of blogging with a giveaway.  He will be giving away "nice prize and leave it at that".  This giveaway ends Friday, May 7, at 3:00 pm PST.

Stray Stitches is having a fantastic giveaway (if I do say so myself - lol).  You could win....

these lovely 10 fat quarters.  This giveaway ends Sunday, May1, at 8:00 pm PST.



Wow!  This post was long.  Sorry about that. There was just so much to share.  And, of course, there was also my ranting.  If you have stuck with me through the entire way, thank you!  Aren't friends wonderful?  They put up with you no matter what kind of mood you are in.  They will share your happiness, your sorrow, your grumpiness, and even your bragging.  Friends are priceless.  I have enjoyed sharing my life with you.  But I especially enjoy sharing your life through your blogs.  They are what get my day started.  I visit some of you while eating my lunch.  Others I read just before bed. You have all enriched my days and expanded my knowledge.  Thank you!

A good friend is a connection to life - a tie to the past, a road to the future, the key to sanity in a totally insane world.
~Lois Wyse

Be thankful it's Thursday - another day for creating!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Flowers Thru The Barn Door

You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.
~Michael Jordan

I remembered!  My brain finally allowed to me remember what I wanted to write about yesterday!  That allusive little thought finally bared itself.  Do you remember when I made the promise that I wouldn't buy any fabric for one month?  I made that promise on March 24.  Today is April 27.  I made it through the entire month without buying a stitch of fabric.  Nothing, nada, zero, zip!  And now that I have made it to my goal, I really don't have any strong desire to run out and buy something new.  I have looked at sales sent to me and found some other great deals online but have managed to think "Do I really need it?"  And the answer is "NO!".  There is no nagging sensation that makes me feel like I have to buy.  No need to add to my stash.  Now I don't promise that I won't buy any fabric ever again because that would just be a waste of breath and an impossible promise to keep.  Especially since I will be going to a quilt show this weekend and there might be something that I just can't pass up - lol!  There - I did it!  I can turn away from sales and specials!  I can tamp down that urge to buy.  I just needed that little cooling off period to remind me to work with what I have.  I am proud of myself!


World Storytelling Day is a global celebration of the art of oral storytelling. It is celebrated every year on the spring equinox in the northern hemisphere, the first day of autumn equinox in the southern. On World Storytelling Day, as many people as possible tell and listen to stories in as many languages and at as many places as possible, during the same day and night. Participants tell each other about their events in order to share stories and inspiration, to learn from each other and create international contacts.
Some of us are natural storytellers. Some of us seem to get stuck listening to a lot of long-winded stories. Whatever your take, telling stories is an important part of the human experience. If you're stumped for a story to tell today, give this a try. It starts with a trip to the grocery store and it ends with a stolen helicopter and a talking dog.  You fill in the middle!



Yesterday I made all of the blocks for both of my Barn Door Swap partners for May.

These are the 7.5" blocks I made for Jane.  She had no preferences.  I used some of the left over fat quarter from the block I made yesterday and made the fussy cut center for the block on the left.  The block on the right is made from some left over scraps from the Sweet and Sour line from Connecting Threads.

Next I made this 12" block for Blondie, once again using the left over scraps from yesterday.  I guess this is what fireworks would look like through a barn door.

This is the second block I made for Blondie.  It definitely has an Asian feel.  The flowered fabric has gold highlights around each flower.  The sides really aren't warpy like they look in the picture - that's what I get for laying the block on a curvy chair seat.  And the colors are much prettier than the camera was able to pick up.



Today is One Flower Wednesday and even though I didn't get a flower made for myself, I did get two flowers made for my May swap partner in the Inchy Hexagon Flower Swap.

My May swap partner, Jorie, requested citrus colors with a white or white on white center.  This one reminds me of a lime.

And this bright orange one certainly fits the citrus color range.  I hope Jorie likes these flowers. 



Today I am going to work on the baby quilt.  Maybe I can get everything but the binding finished.



A Quilting Life is having a giveaway.  You could win a $25 gift certificate to Sky Reve Fabrics.  This giveaway ends Thursday, April 28.

Lily's Quilts is having a giveaway.  You could win a layer cake of your choice from Simply Solids.  This giveaway ends Saturday, April 30.

Blushing Rose is having a quick giveaway.  You could win one of two stitchery kits.  This giveaway ends Friday, April 29.

Fabric Worm is having their weekly giveaway.  This week  you could win 7 fat quarters of Jenean Morrison Silent Cinema in Orange.  This giveaway ends Monday, May 2 at 8:30 am PST.

I Have A Notion is having a giveaway.  You could win a copy of More Loose Change or a copy of S Is For Scraps.  Two winners will be drawn on Saturday, April 30.
Stray Stitches is still having her (MY) giveaway!  I am giving away 10 fat quarters of some very pretty coordinated spring fabric.  This giveaway ends Sunday, May 1, at 8:00 pm PST.



Tonight is grocery shopping.  Off to the 'store in the hood'.  It's really a nice, clean store - it's just not in the best part of town.  They do provide a security guard for the parking lot - not that I've ever seen a need for one.  And good thing, too.  The little mouse of a man that stands outside the door in his rent-a-cop uniform couldn't discourage a fly from entering the store.  I really don't think the management hired him as a daunting presence but it is nice that they gave him a job.  Our store is a little different in some of the aisles from other stores in town.  You can find more ethnic foods plus tubs of lard and pickled pigs feet.  A lot of time our prices are lower than the better part of town and that's a good thing.  The clientele ranges from the upper middle class to the down-and-out.  I really wish I didn't dread shopping so much.  It's just too bad the both my DH and I feel that we have to eat regular meals - lol!

The woman just ahead of you at the supermarket checkout has all the delectable groceries you didn't even know they carried.
~Mignon McLaughlin

Wednesday - make it more than mediocre!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

A Full Mailbox

My mind contains many good ideas, but it's not always easy to squeeze one out.
 ~Ashleigh Brilliant

Several times throughout the day yesterday I thought of the perfect opening for my blog today.  Even while I was working on another part of the post I thought "Don't forget to write about......."  Can I remember what that 'something' was?  I know it was good or at least a little interesting.  Well, I think it was anyway.  I know I was pleased that I thought of it at the time.  Now when I stop to write about it I just see a great big O - an empty hole, a void, a blank page.  Think, think, think......   Well, maybe that will be my opening for tomorrow.  Or, maybe you could just crawl around inside my head and find out what crevice the idea is hiding in.  If you find it, let me know - lol!



G'day mate! Happy Hug An Australian Day to you! Today we pay tribute to the Aussies in our lives that we know and love (If you don't have any Australian friends, you can substitute Crocodile Dundee or Elle McPherson as an universal Aussie representative).
Hugging an Australian will certainly make both the hug giver and receiver feel better, but it may even go as far as to improve international relations! That's definitely a plus in my book. So what are you waiting for, you silly blokes? Get out there, give some hugs, and relieve some stress on this amorous day of bear hugs and Aussie embraces. The Australians aren't going to hug themselves!
We hear that Australians are friendly, fun-loving, and have adorable accents. Those seem like good enough reasons to hug one today. But beware of the boomerang effect. You hug them once and they turn around an come back for more!



The last couple of days my mailbox has been stuffed with winnings I have received.  Last week I received a squishy from Cyndi of Bluebird's Wing.  I was one of the winners of her Quilt Festival giveaway and had won a Snap Sack (a small quilt kit).  Woohoo!!  It arrived last Thursday....

I was very surprised when I opened the envelope to find not only the wonderful little quilt kit, but a solid milk chocolate bunny (yummy - and I haven't eaten even a single nibble yet), a magnetic notepad (great for sticking to the refrigerator for shopping lists), two magnetic bookmarks (my favorite kind) and some darling note cards.  Thank you so very much for your generosity, Cyndi!!

Yesterday the mailman stuffed my mailbox once again.  This time there was a squishy envelope from Amy of Harriet Homemaker Strikes Again.  I had won her fantastic birthday giveaway by guessing the number of Hershey eggs in a jar.  My lucky guess was 73 - and it was pure luck - lol!

First there was a wonderful little screw driver that I think will be easier to use than the one that came with my sewing machine.  Then there was a Layer Cake Recipe Book that looks full of good pattern ideas.  Also included was a little 'candy bar' of Luna Notte by 3 sisters for moda, and some wonderful pink scissors - Cutter Bee.  Amy also included a little roll of scrap materials in all spring colors (I see hexagons being made from those).  Happy birthday once again and thank you so very much, Amy!



Yesterday I also received swap blocks from Tiffany for the 12" Barn Door Block Swap for April.

I just love the centers of these blocks with their modern fabrics.  The white fabric is a white on white stripe that is very effective and the blue fabric is so rich looking.  Thank you, Tiffany!!



Even with all of the fun of opening squishy envelopes, I managed to get two block swaps made.  The first one was for my May swap partner in the Quilting Block Swaps Australia.

Debbie requested any block in brown and pink.  I decided to go with block called Salt Lake City.  I used a modern fat quarter I had received in a giveaway for the pink and then accented it with brown and a little tone on tone beige.  This block was fun to make.  I hope Debbie likes the results.

The second block I made was for my May swap partner in the Block Swap Adventure.

Mary had requested the Starflower block but didn't have a preference in colors.  This block was fun to make and I really like the final product.  I hope Mary will like it as much as I do.



Today I will make my May Barn Door swap blocks. I also need to make a hexagon flower for One Flower Wednesday.


Auntie Nicole's Corner is celebrating her one year blog anniversary with a giveaway.  You could win  Essential Dots by Moda fat quarter pack or Tic-Tac Oh! pattern and enough 2" pre-cut strips in Basic Grey to make this pattern.  The giveaway ends Saturday, April 30, at noon PST.

The Confused Quilter is celebrating her blogaversary with a giveaway!  Staci is giving away a $25 gift certificate to Fat Quarter Shop.  This giveaway ends Friday, April 29.

Feeling Stitchy is having a giveaway.  You could win a copy of Sewn by Hand by Susan Wasinger and also the fun haberdashery that's pictured on the cover.  This giveaway closes on Thursday, April 28.

Sew Cal Gal is having a sponsored giveaway.  You could win one of five Sherrod Studios patterns.  This giveaway ends Saturday, April 30, at noon PST.

The Adventures of the Empress of the Universe is celebrating 5000 page views and 50 followers with a giveaway.  You could win a beautiful wonky star mug rug/candle mat that Freda made.  This giveaway ends Wednesday, April 27.

Kool Benz is having a sponsored giveaway.  Skye Reve Fabrics is giving away a 7 piece 1/2 yd bundle set of "DayDream" fabric by Cindy Walker for Riley Blake.  This giveaway ends Friday, April 29 at midnight.

Jaybird Quilts is having a sponsored giveaway.  Green Fairy Quilts is giving away a fat eighth bundle of Grace by 3 sisters.  The giveaway will end Wednesday, April 27, at 12 pm EST.

Stray Stitches (ME!) is having a giveaway.  Help me celebrate my finishing a quilt for my daughter.  I am giving away 10 fat quarters of beautiful spring fabric.  This giveaway ends Sunday, May 1, at 8:00 pm PST.



Yesterday I was supposed to have a clean house. It was Monday and my house cleaner was due to arrive at 9:00.  At 8:30 the telephone rings and I it's my house cleaner, begging off for the day.  This has happened about once a month. She only comes every other week. Mondays are bad because of holidays. I think it's time to either switch days for cleaning or go back to cleaning my house myself. If I have to let her go, this will be the second gal that has cleaned well for a year and then slowly slacked off. I'm not picky - I rarely complain about the job they do. I pay promptly. I give gifts at Christmas and converse with her about her family and life. I don't know what else to do. It is just so very frustrating.

You don't get anything clean without getting something else dirty.
 ~Cecil Baxter

Monday, April 25, 2011

Quilting For A Baby

Life is one long experiment in learning. Who can be perfect all the time? Sometimes I feel half-wise, sometimes half-stupid.
~Terri Guillemets

As I traveled around blogland on Friday, it seemed to be a day of finishes - mine included.  There were a lot of us out there that were happy to be able to say "I finished my quilt!".  Such a wonderful feeling.  Now it's time to get on with other UFOs and WIPs or even to start something new.  It also is time to start up another month's worth of swap blocks.  Finally finishes and new beginnings.  Almost the end of the month, Easter is over, and a new week has begun.  As one flower whithers another blooms.  The circle of life.  Even in sewing/quilting there is always a beginning and an end.  And so goes life!



World Penguin Day

On the 25th of April every year, the Adelie penguins in the Antarctic begin their annual northward migration. The Adelies start migrating in the Antarctic fall season and won’t return to their colonies until the following spring. In true synchronized fashion, the Adelies dive into the frigid waters answering their Nature’s call to migrate. They will swim north for only a few hundred miles (around 600km) and stay among icebergs that are floating about, feasting on krill and other penguin delicacies. So really, these penguins don’t actually go anywhere when they migrate. They’ll bob around in the ocean and rest on the ice until it’s time to head back home to Antarctica. The reason they do this is because the days in Antarctica are becoming darker during this time of year. Adelies do not see too well in the dark so they migrate north so they can hunt for food, otherwise they would starve.

Friday I worked on the first of two baby quilts.  I had it mostly finished and was able to hand stitch the binding during some quiet time over the weekend.

  Can you tell it's for a girl?  I quilted this with just a simple diagonal straight stitch.  Here's the back.....

  The back is just one piece of fabric but I personalized it with the little one's name.
Now to make quilt number two.
Over the weekend I took a walk through my backyard.  There are a few flowers blooming and other promising blooms in the future.
As you can tell I do not have a color scheme.  If I like it, I plant it and to heck with the color police - lol!



Today I will make a block for my Block Swap partner for May. And, if time allows, I will start assembling the second baby quilt.



Quiltstory is having a giveaway.  You could win a one month membership to Ole Frog Eyes (a virtual design wall) and 4 fat quarters of Sweet Nothings Riley Blake collection.  This giveaway ends Wednesday, April 27.

Oops-Lah is having a giveaway.  You could win a Hullabaloo Layer Cake by Moda, or a Bali Pops Strawberry Fields, or a Modern Workshop Jelly Roll by Moda.  This giveaway ends May 9th.

Patchwork Underground is having a giveaway.  You could win a copy of Pat Sloan's newest book, What A Novel Idea.  This giveaway ends Tuesday, April 26.

Patchwork Underground is having a second giveaway.  You could win a pair of Gingher spring-action dressmaker’s scissors.  This giveaway ends Tuesday, April 26, too.

Hawthorne Threads is having their weekly giveaway.  This time you could win a Cut Out & Keep fat quarter bundle.  The winner will be selected on Wednesday, April 27.

Stray Stitches (that's me!) is having a giveaway.  You could win 10 fat quarters of Classic Cottons - beautiful spring colors!  This giveaway ends Sunday, May 1 at 8:00 pm.

Leona's Quilting Adventure is having a giveaway.  Leona is giving away 4 Lapel Sticks.  This giveaway ends Friday, April 29, at midnight EST.

Dawn's Quilt Corner is having a giveaway.  Dawn is giving away two fat quarter bundles of DS Quilts Collection.  This giveaway ends Saturday, April 30, at 6:00 pm PST.

My Go Go Life is having a giveaway. You could win 4 half yard cuts of some darling Heather Ross fabric.  This giveaway ends Thursday, April 28.



I hope everyone had a glorious Easter.  We did!  The weekend was a nice one.  It flew by much too fast.  Saturday we did our Easter celebration meal - it just fit our schedule better.  DH fixed the main course - smoked brisket - mmmmmmmm - it was so good!  He had to have the meat on the fire by 7:30 - that's in the A.M. on a Saturday - and then stoke and watch the fire all day.  We had our DD#2 and SIL, my Mother and sister, and a family friend for dinner.  So much good food.  Lots of conversation and happiness.  Sunday was more relaxed with just the kids (even if they are over 30 I still call them "the kids" - lol) - visiting, watching a little tv, and just enjoying each others company.  Oh, by the way, my daughter loved her quilt :D  Two days gone in a blink of the eye.  Only memories are left of the weekend.  Until next time.

When you look at your life, the greatest happinesses are family happinesses.
~Joyce Brothers

Make your Monday magical!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Help Me Celebrate With A Giveaway!

Success isn't a result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire.
~Arnold H. Glasow

Finally a finish!  I can't believe I finally put the last stitch in the Minnesota Star Quilt.  It sat idle for so long.  I started this quilt back in May of last year.  I'm so embarrassed.  I  put this quilt on the back burner so many times that I lost count.  Almost a year to complete a quilt that's just not that big (60" X 72").  I finished a king sized quilt in under four months (a few years ago).  Other projects always looked more interesting.  There was always something new to try.  And then I finally finished the top this past October.  I pieced the backing and then put it in a sandwich.  And then it layed on the spare bed, waiting to be quilted.  And waited, and waited.......  Finally I started quilting it in January - just one row.  Not difficult quilting; just quilting 1/4" away from the seam line.  No marks to follow, no fancy fmq.  And then it sat again.  I'd already missed being able to give it as a Christmas gift - also missed Valentine's Day.  Good thing the recipient didn't know she was getting it - lol!  Finally, with much determination and muscle straining it is done.  Woohoo!!!  Finished date:  April 20, 2011. 



Jelly Beans
Today is Good Friday and Earth Day - two very important days.  But April 22 is also important for another reason - It's National Jelly Bean Day.  Anyone who loves these delicious, flavorsome, colorful little sweets should treat themselves on this day.  But be careful, as we all know, jelly beans are addictive.  There are many things you can do to celebrate besides eating jelly beans. Here are a few suggestions.  Why not dress in the colors of your favorite jelly bean?  You could have a jelly bean party and ask for friends to create their own special jelly bean dish.
Jelly beans are one of the oldest forms of candy we have. They date back to at least the mid-nineteenth century. Jelly bean historians believe the jelly bean center originated from Turkish Delight, which comes from the Middle East. The gummy center is made from sugar, corn syrup and other ingredients to give them their fruit taste. Machines spray the insides with colored sugar to give the beans their hard shells. Jelly beans today come in all kinds of different flavors, including spicy. You can even put different ones in your mouth to create new flavors. They are even popular with American presidents. Ronald Reagan kept a jar on his desk in the White House. Once of the most interesting facts buried in the history of the jelly bean is the fact that many of these little babies even went into space. One of the space shuttles took up a bunch of jelly beans for the shuttle crew to snack on while they were up there.


(picture heavy)

And the unveiling begins......

The colors - browns and blues....

A corner revealed.....

A peak at the backing....

A little more to see.....

Here's the back with a simple row of scrap piecing in the center (ignore the shadow cast by the overhead wires)...

And here it is!  The entire quilt in the late afternoon sun.  Can you see the toes sticking out underneath.  Thanks to my DH for being my quilt holder!

And the final stitches - a label I printed myself using just muslin and freezer paper run through my ink-jet printer.  I added some left over fabric around the edges and I had a label.



It's Giveaway Time

I think finishing the quilt is reason to celebrate.  It calls for a giveaway.  I am going to giveaway.......

10 coordinated fat quarters.  These are from Classic Cottons and dated 1999.  I don't know what the line of fabric is called as it wasn't on a single piece of the fabric.  All together there are 2 1/2 yards of fabric.  Don't they look like spring?  How can you win these lovely pieces of fabric, you ask?  Well, let me tell you.  It's really quite simple......

Just leave me a comment telling me what your favorite jelly bean flavor is.

and for a second chance.....

Blog about this giveaway.  Come back and leave a separate comment with a link to where you have blogged about it.

Only two chances per person.  This giveaway is open to everyone - and I mean everyone.  If you have a no-reply blogger, please include your email address in your comment.  If I can't contact you,  you can't win,  and that would be so sad.  Every time I have a giveaway, there are at least 10 people who are eliminated because of NO REPLY BLOGGER.  If you aren't sure if this applies to you, then jump over to Pleasant Home where you will find an excellent tutorial on No Reply Bloggers.  I will do my best to respond to each and every comment left - but forgive me if I don't if there should be too many (and I hope there is!)

This giveaway will remain open until Sunday, May 1, at 8:00 pm PST.

Good luck!!!



Today I hope to get the first baby quilt finished except for maybe the hand stitching of the binding.



Fat Quarterly is having a giveaway.  You could win a copy Countryside Softies with patterns of all sorts of cute little critters.  Not sure when this ends.

Quilt Hollow is having a giveaway.  You could win an autographed copy of Country Comforts by Cheryl Wall.  While your there, check out the sneak peeks of her next book.  This winner will be announced on Sunday, May 1.

BillieBee's Blog is having a giveaway.  Billie is giving away a Connecting Threads kit.  She will have her DH draw a name on Sunday, April 24.

Singing Three Little Birds is having a Poppy Seed Fabrics giveaway.  You could win a Heather Bailey Pin cushion pattern and one yard of the new Night Owl Satin fabric from Poppy Seed Fabrics.  This giveaway ends Friday, April 29.

Sew Fun Quilts is having a giveaway.  You could win 200 pre-cut 2 inch fabric squares....both light and dark.  But hurry, this giveaway ends tonight at midnight CDT.

Little Bluebell is having a giveaway.  Adrianne is giving away one complete fat quarter bundle of Denyse Schmidt's, super popular new fabric, DS Quilts Collection, Picnic and Fairgrounds - 21 fat quarters!  A winner will be randomly selected on Thursday, May 5.

The Quilting Booklady is having a giveaway.  There are two chances to win a Lapel Stick.  This giveaway ends Monday, April 25th. 

P.S. I Quilt is having a sponsored giveaway.  You could win three wonderful Longaberger products.  The winner will be drawn on Sunday, April 24.



It's Good Friday.  Many people will spend this day in fasting, prayer, repentance, and meditation on the agony and suffering of Christ on the cross.  For others it is a day off from work or school.  Not everybody celebrates this religious holiday - and that's fine.  It's also Earth Day.  A day to promote awareness and appreciation for the Earth's environment.  It's also just Friday.  The last day of the week, the beginning of the weekend.  However you look at today I hope it finds you happy and enjoying life. 

For I remember it is Easter morn,
And life and love and peace are all new born.
~Alice Freeman Palmer

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Can You Guess?

The cyclone derives its powers from a calm center. So does a person.
~Norman Vincent Peale

A quiet day.  That was what my Wednesday was.  It was actually a relaxing day.  Something that doesn't happen too often.  I worked on hand stitching the binding of the quilt - very therapeutic.  I cut out two baby quilts for a baby shower for twins in two weeks.  The day was overcast and we even had a little rain.  A day that neither moved too quickly nor too slowly.  The DH brought home lunch and we shared the noon day meal together.  A day of no stress and no schedules.  A rarity and one to enjoy.  I could get used to days like this.



Kindergarten Day

This month we celebrate Kindergarten Day, in honor of Friedrich Froebel who was born on April 21, 1782 and who started the first Kindergarten in Germany in 1837. The school was built upon a series of innovative principles that used the innate curiosity and interests of children to guide them to see what Froebel believed to be the harmonious, interconnectedness of all things -- through song and play (which was unheard of in earlier schools); daily lessons in drawing, design, and other artistic activities; and learning through active doing and close contacts with the natural world -- many of the kindergartens actually had real gardens attached to them that the children tended and in doing so, Froebel believed, cultivated their own inner lives.
The first public American Kindergarten was opened in 1873 in St. Louis. By 1876, at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, there was a model kindergarten for inspection on the grounds at Fairmont Park. One visitor, Mrs. Anna Wright, was so taken with what she saw that she bought a set of what were called Froebel's gifts -- the blocks and balls, sticks and geometric forms that all kindergartens were equipped with -- and took a course of instruction so that she could pass on what she had seen about Froebel's ideas of beautiful unity to her son, Frank Lloyd Wright.



Erin, of My Patchwork Life, was recently doing some destashing.  I selected a book that looked interesting.

I have been enjoying looking through this book as there are recipes and historical helpful hints scattered throughout.  I probably won't make up the quilt but the block patterns are ones I can use for block swaps.  Thank you, Erin!



It's time to make the Mystery Designer BOM.  I have had this little package from the Fat Quarter Shop since the middle of last week.  Don't you think it's time to see what we have for this month?  Let's get started....

Four beautiful fabrics to work with......
Here are all the pieces cut out.  39 pieces in all......

First I had to made the HSTs.  Any ideas yet?  Not a single guess?  Me neither.....

Next came these blocks with the corners tipped in white.  Looks sort of like a roof to me....

What could this be?  A Christmas fence?  A three-eyed monster?....

Look!  A bunny laying on his side holding up a football goal.  Go Bunnies!! 
Can you venture a guess?

Oh look!  The three-eyed monster now reminds me of a wrestling face mask - don't ask me why because I don't even watch WWF - lol!  Or maybe an Easter hat - 'tis the season for one.
I bet you have an idea now.....

It's a Christmas basket.  Actually, the block is called "The Basket of Good Cheer".  Did it make you smile?  Had you already guessed what it was?   This block was designed by Anne Sutton (  I really like this block!  Only one more block before the series is complete.  Wow!  Then it will be time to assemble the quilt and make another sandwich.  I have all the necessary parts thanks to my Christmas present from my DH.



Today I will finish the blue and brown quilt!!!!!!


Mount Vincent Quilts is having a giveaway.  You could win a fat quarter bundle of Where The Wind Blows.  This giveaway ends Tuesday, April 26, at 9:00 pm AET.

Mariliz's Musing is having a Shaklee Get Clean Giveaway.  You could win a Get Clean Green Package includes: 1 Get Clean Basic H2 Organic Super Cleaning Concentrate (16 fl. oz.), 3 Get Clean Spray bottles, and a 1 Get Clean Super Microfiber Cleaning Cloth.  This giveaway ends Friday, April 22, at 10:00 pm.

Chatterbox Quilts Chitchat is having a giveaway.  Kim is giving away a copy of the book, Quilt Fiesta.  This giveaway will end Friday, April 22, at 7:00 MST.

Sew 4 Home is having a giveaway.  You could win a copy of Thread & Bobbin.  This giveaway ends May 9th at midnight PT.

Cut To Pieces is having a sponsored giveaway.  You could win a bundle of 1/2 yard cuts of Cut Out and Keep by Cloud 9.  This giveaway ends ?

Quilted Seasons is having a giveaway.  Karenkay is giving away some adorable birdie fabric.  She will announce the winner on Friday, April 22.

V and Co. is having a Green Fairy Quilts sponsored giveaway.  They are giving away one fat quarter bundle by Liesl Gibson.  This giveaway will end Friday, April 22.

Bumble Beans is having a giveaway.  You could win a signed copy of Pat Sloan's new book A Novel Idea.  This giveaway ends Wednesday, April 27.

PatchworkNPlay is celebrating her blog-anniversary.  Suz is giving away two charm packs that she made up out of 30 years worth of stash.  This giveaway ends Saturday, April 23, at Eastern Australian Time.



The weekend is almost here.  That means it's time to clear off my storage area.  Our DD#2 and SIL will be here for an overnight visit and probably would like some place to sleep.  Oh boy, I get to move stacks, put away scraps, and generally tidy up in the spare room.  But that's okay.  That will put the room back in some sort of order again.  Maybe I will even find my desk top - lol!  I look forward to their visit as they haven't been able to come to relax and chat since...... Christmas.  Wow!  Has it really been that long?  Guess that's what happens when life gets in the way.  We do talk at least once a week and text more than that.  But a face to face, being able to hug visit is so much better.  What are your plans for Easter weekend?

Easter spells out beauty, the rare beauty of new life.
~S.D. Gordon

Thankfully it's Thursday - I have another day to sew!
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