Welcome to my blog, we're talking about quilting and other good stuff. I'm glad you stopped by ... look around, add a comment, become a follower if you feel inclined, tell your friends about me, and come back soon!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Out and back in

After Pat and I dropped Charlene off at an appointment yesterday, we went to one of her favorite diners (Charlene's, not Pat's!) to have breakfast. I know, I know... but we were hungry!

Plato's Diner is located near the University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland; they serve American and Greek food, but we only wanted pancakes and french toast!  

Sometimes when you ask for sugar free syrup you'll get the high-carb stuff anyway, so I came prepared...

BUT, they had Smucker's, which tastes a lot better!

Charlene eats there a lot; her favorite waitress paused to smile at the camera ... nice lady!

We didn't hang out all day for fun and games though; I did manage to get some quilty work done - I finished the Stars and Stripes quilt top, yaaaay!

I also threw together a back, nothing special about it.  I'm not going to add borders, so this quilt finished at approximately 72 x 81, a pretty decent bed sized quilt.  All I need to do now is take it to the long armer and make the binding, unless I add it to the group of finished tops I already have.  As I'm looking at the picture, I'm seeing secondary light and dark stripes that weren't obvious when I looked at the real thing - very interesting!

My next project *should* be to resurrect the Mai Tais in Paradise quilt I started on Bonnie Hunter's quilter's cruise in November 2011 - it's a beautiful pattern and I don't want to let it languish too long.  I'll probably need to cut more strips though; I've been "borrowing" from that bag for other projects.  Looks like I've got my work cut out for me!

Sew forth and sew on...

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

WeeBee funnin'!

Last Saturday was our annual WeeBee cookout at Sandra's house, and as usual it was so fun!  We had a little rain but that didn't keep us from having a good time - we just moved from the lawn to the covered patio and indoors. 

On the way to Sandra's house, fellow Bee'ers Felicia, Pat and I picked up the crabs (a MUST menu item!) - they were steaming hot!

James took really good care of us on the grill...
we're talking chicken wings, fried fish, country ribs, hot dogs, sausages, kebobs, steak ... smokin'!

WeeBees are so talented, we always have great show n tell at our meetings, but Gwen gave us a special treat - dolls!

She took a class from Sandra, and she gives each doll her own uniquely special touch.

Beautiful dolls!  Shall we rename Gwen "The Doll Whisperer?"

Carolyn's 4-layer German Chocolate Turtle Cake - yum!

After the cookout Felicia, Pat and I went shopping for some African fabrics, which I was able to resist - thanks to Felicia's lifted eyebrow when I picked up a bolt and asked, "Am I likely to use this within the next 6 months??"

It was a day of good fun, good friends, and good food - looking forward to next year!
Sew forth and sew on...

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Silent Sunday

Thanks to Charlene for sharing this video with me - enjoy!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

And the winner is...

G'morning everybody!

Thanks to everyone who participated in my three happy things giveaway!  The winner of the Tea Party fabric is... Gene Black!  Gene wrote:

I love Sweet Potato Fries too, but that was yours.

1. A full cup of coffee steaming on my desk
2. Sweet comments on my quilting projects.
3. Dark Chocolate covered acai berries.

hmmmm..seems my "mouth" controls my happiness - so I should make sure it smiles today!

Keep smiling, Gene; you're our winner!  Please email me with your snail mail addy, and I'll get your fabric in the mail on Monday.

Have a great Saturday; sew forth and sew on

Friday, August 24, 2012

Call me Imelda; all laid out

Have you ever seen so many shoes!??

I've been going through my closets and drawers, and donating used clothing etc. that can still be used.  I gathered these shoes from two different closets... some had been in there so long UNUSED that I hate to tell you how long it's been!  I had to ask myself two honest questions: (1) when's the last time you used this?  (2) when are you likely to use this again??  There were a few pair that I liked but by now my feet have changed, and they just didn't fit comfortably.

So, out they go!  The photo above has a total of 26 pairs of shoes, the ones in the shoebox are a pair of peau de soie shoes I bought -- I swear it must have been in the 80's -- and wore exactly ONE time.  I'd been holding onto them because I'd worn them exactly ONE time and I might need them again, but if I haven't used them in 20 years, I doubt I will anytime soon - out they go tomorrow!  And those are just the usable ones... I tossed out maybe half a dozen pairs that were no good!

And now, on to the good stuff ... quilting!

I've been diligently working away at my stars and stripes quilt between other stuff, and I've made significant progress...

I finished the last three stars, yaaay! 

I had finished de-papering the string blocks while watching Bonnie Hunter on QuiltCam one evening, so yesterday I took everything with me to the senior center to lay out.  I don't have much clear space at home to lay out a large quilt, and those tables in their conference rooms are a really good size!
The stars in the first layout I tried (above) just didn't do it for me... I was alternating light background/dark points and dark background/white points on the same row.  For some reason I couldn't make it look coordinated.

Then I tried my original thought -- all light background/dark points on one row, all dark background/white points on the next one.
I like this layout better!  Did you notice the out-of-place light block on the bottom row?

I could only lay out five rows on the large table but it didn't take any time at all to get everything in place.  After I had them laid out the way I wanted, I just pinned them at the sides and numbered each row. 

At home I sewed one row together just to keep it moving ... progress is good!

Be sure to check out my giveaway, it's winding down but you still have a day left!

That's it for now, have a great Friday, sew forth and sew on

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Easy friendship braid quilt

Three things to be happy about:
(1) clean laundry
(2) taking your time
(3) sloppy joes

Hi everybody - just a reminder that my giveaway ends Saturday! Get happy... you might win!

I was looking for an easy pattern to use a lot of 2-1/2" strips and I found this tutorial by Missouri Quilts that I wanted to share - enjoy!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Three things to be happy about:
(1) colored tissue paper
(2) sitting still
(3) blowing out the birthday candles

Does anyone have a birthday coming up?  If so, how will you celebrate?  I hope it's a very happy birthday!!

Last Friday Charlene, Pat and I went to see Sparkle which opened that day at the Magic Theatres in PG County, Maryland.  This theater came to The Boulevard in 2004 and is owned by Magic Johnson of basketball fame - we call it "the Magic Johnson theater."  This is actually the first time I've ever been to this particular theater, although I see it every time I go to The Boulevard.

I like the black-and-white montage they have in the lobby, posters of famous Black authors, actors, TV personalities, sports figures, etc., such as Sugar Ray Leonard, Bill Cosby, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Martin Lawrence, Redd Fox, Ella Fitzgerald.  It's a very attractive display.

And here's a poster of Magic himself; I guess the locations and dates are places where he's opened other movie theaters...

I really enjoyed Sparkle, it was Whitney Houston's last movie and I highly recommend it!  It's one of those movies where you talk back to the screen a little, and sniffle a little. It's approximately 2 hours long I reckon ... they have so many commercials and previews it's hard to tell.  Anyway, here's a trailer - enjoy!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Three happy things and a giveaway!

Three things to be happy about:
(1) laughing over old pictures
(2) sweet potato fries
(3) sharing your good fortune

Hi everybody, especially my followers!

A couple weeks ago when I went blackberry picking with Charlene, Renea and Pat, I also picked a container for my neighbors across the street.  Matt and Rachel are very nice, and they have a little munchkin named Isaiah who's cute as a bug!  Anyway, Matt has shares in a farm "down in the country" with a buddy, and when I gave them the blackberries they handed me some corn on the cob and a tomato.  Well, I'm not usually a corn eater but my sister told me how she fries hers; I tried it and it was  delicious - I think I'm a convert!  A few days later Matt came over with two slices of super-delicious watermelon.  A few days after that, he brought me a whole melon - my cup runneth over!

Last week I was given an entire box of sweet potatoes - now that's a lot of taters!  I took lots and lots of them to guild meeting on Saturday and shared with the members ... I was glad to see they were all taken, I can just smell sweet potato pies!  Sweet potato souffle with marshmallows on top - yummy!  Anybody ever had sweet potato cake?  I think it's made the same as carrot cake; I used to find them at Costco in October-November... but I digress.

And now for the giveaway, thanks for being patient!

I have a 2-1/2 yard piece of Daisy Kingdom fabric in my stash that's cute as can be, but I know the only way I'd probably ever use it would be as a backing. 

It's called "Tea Party" and seems to be one of those sweet over-printed designs that have the outline of the teapots shifted just slightly from the colors ... is that what over-printing is??   Anyway, the teapots are blocked out in very light blue squares as if they're meant to be cut apart.  There's even a shelf to perch them on!  Sorry, no cups  :o)

This can be yours if you like fussy cutting!

On almost all of my posts I list three happy things ... they're hardly ever related to me or to each other, just random things to be happy about!  All you have to do to win is:

(1) leave me a message listing three things to be happy about - they don't need an explanation, they can just be one-liners; and
(2) announce the giveaway on your blog (if you have one)

That's it, no other requirement!  I'll pick a winner and post it by 9 am on Saturday the 25th, good luck!  I usually post by 5 am but hey, sometimes this retired lady likes to sleep in!  ;o)

Sew forth and sew on, have a great Monday!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Jelly roll fun!

We had a great time at guild yesterday, doing our jelly roll race!  I think there were a dozen people participating, and quite naturally someone started off by sewing without thread, it was a scream!

This is what mine looked like after I finished (sorry, I didn't win!); next time you see this it'll be a real quilt with borders!

This is one made by Jocelyn (she was quilter of the month with the trunk show this month) - good inspiration!   I think Jocelyn made this one when we had our jelly roll race at our WeeBee Quilting bee a few months ago.  She did a beautiful job finishing her's, didn't she?

Here I am working away diligently... what a tangled mess my strips were!  I don't think there's any way to keep them from tangling, unless you stretch all 800 inches across a roller. 

At this point I think I'm on my first round of five, LOL.  I had to decide early on that in a jelly roll race, the strip edges don't have to meet up EXACTLY ...

And now, in no particular order, we have a few winners!

Azalia (left) and Serita!

Natalie (left) and Chloe!

Jackie (left) and Linda (me)!

The fabrics combinations were awesome!  I saw one other person using blues, there were several batik sets, two people had black-and-white combinations...

Nadine chose African fabrics for her's...
I think it will be simply beautiful when she finishes, she does such lovely quilts!

We had a great time doing this jelly roll race, there was laughter all over the room.  My next one will definitely be black and white, they looked so good sewn together.  Of course, black and white is a classic combo anyway, you can't miss with it!

Sew forth and sew on

Saturday, August 18, 2012

behind the scenes

Three things to be happy about:
(1) solving a riddle
(2) crinkly laugh lines
(3) autumn shopping sprees

It's guild day again - already!  Where did the last month go, the time just flew by.  The saying goes "time flies when you're having fun" but I think it flies whether you're having fun or not! 

But thank goodness quilters know how to have fun, whether we're working on our projects or just doodling around some other way.

Today in our workshop we're having a jelly roll race, yaaaay!  Because I've been on a strict fabric diet lately, rather than buying a jelly roll (or two) I decided to shop my stash and cut my own.  Let's hear it for the stash! 

I needed 40 strips and I'm really pleased (and feeling like a clever girl!) that I was able to pull enough fabrics to get those 40 strips... I'm using blues this time, cutting three strips from each fabric.

I took my strips to the quilting session at the senior center on Thursday and trimmed off those pesky selvedges.  I had to laugh, because I also took my new favorite trail mix and everybody was getting hooked on it!

I got this trail mix from Costco and it's a great snack because it's not sweet ... but it's HOT!  There's a liberal amount of wasabi in the mix!

I trimmed off all the selvedges at the center, so I was able to start sewing the ends together when I got home.  Some people sew their strips at a 45 degree angle which is pretty - but I take the lazy way out and just connect em straight on.

I decided not to worry about matching fabrics or which ones got hooked onto which, because when we do the jelly roll race there won't be any way to control the colors anyway.  So, I just let them fall where they may!

So here's the finished product, rolled on a paper towel roll to keep them from tangling...
let the race begin - wish me luck!

Sew forth and sew on