Monday, June 28, 2010

Weekend Report

Wow, what a nasty weekend I had.  I had planned to finish up the two kid quilts I was working on, but that certainly didn't happen.  For some reason, my legs broke out in the itchiest rash I have ever had.  I have no idea what it was (is) from.  It started Friday at my ankles, and by last night had moved up almost to my "well-never-mind".  I have been taking Benadryl, and using calamine lotion, and the itching has at least become bearable.  So, I still have four dinosaur blocks to piece and the sashing to cut.  I want the quilts done by July 13, and think I should be able to make it since we don't have any special plans for the weekend of the 4th.

You have to see this tutorial.  It's from Missouri Quilt Co. and was posted on Facebook by one of my friends.  It's all about a really simple and quick way to make pinwheels.  Have you ever seen someone do something and then thought, "why didn't I think of that?"  Well, this is one of those things.  When I went to this link, I was pleasantly pleased to see that they had several other tutorials to view.  And, they have a Deal of the Day, which I never seem to remember to check.  But if you're looking for some quick shortcuts, check it out.  I think you'll be pleased.  I figure I can cut the squares with my GO Cutter, and then sew the pinwheels this easy way.  And, if I stack my fabrics right sides together, the squares will be all set to sew.  My friend Cindy has been working on some Grandmother's Garden pieces, and they look so pretty that I feel that I really need to try this.  So, on Friday I ordered the Hexagon die for my GO, and I ordered the papers from Paper Pieces and as soon as they arrive I will have a new hand piecing project to work on.  I'm planning on using my stash of 30 repro fabrics for this classic pattern.  What are you working on?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Dinosaur Quilt

Photos of the first two blocks are here.

Still need to be trimmed, but I'm pleased.

Accuquilt GO

OK, OK, now I understand what all the hoopla is about.  Yesterday afternoon at about 4:30 I ventured into the sewing room determined to cut something with my new GO cutter.  I've been needing to find a pattern to do for my great nephew for his birthday.  I looked over the one sheet that I got with my cutter - one with various blocks that can be cut with the GO.  I decided on a sawtooth saw.  I have a pretty large piece of a dinosaur novelty print and what 3 year old isn't a big fan of dinosaurs!!  It would be perfect for the large square center for the sawtooth star.  I sat and looked at this fabric, decided to use two different "tan" fabrics for my background and some bright colors for the star points.  I pulled out the dies needed for the block, and set up my cutter. (Not a hard job since you just open it and place it on the table.) This time I tried something different -- I actually read the inserts for each die!!.  I am usually a person who believes that the instruction sheet for any project is vital, but for some reason when I started cutting strips, I just "winged" it.  Oh, no, no -- not this time.  And by the time the twins arrived at 6:10 to help to cook dinner, I had all twelve blocks cut for the quilt.  And now I understand the excitement about the cutter.  I'm not good with a rotary cutter, probably because I can't stand on my feet long enough to use it.  But this GO cutter is, as my great nephews would say, "da bomb".  This morning I'm going to start sewing the blocks and hopefully will have pictures to post tomorrow.  And so, a big thanks to Pat from DE for being my inspiration.  Now if I could just master EQ6 !!  That's another week.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Where Have I Been?

I'm not really sure, but if you know please tell me.  I've gotten the top for Lily's princess quilt put together.  It needs pressed, and quilted and I plan to do  that this coming weekend.  I also need to do a quilt for Lily's little brother, who will be three next month.  I never made him a quilt, so now is the time.  I'm thinking about cutting 5" squares with my Go cutter and doing a sort of I Spy quilt for him.  I have been such a slacker. I got my Go cutter in April, and have only used it once to cut strips for a class I'm taking in July.

I've always believed I was a pretty good quilter, I can follow a pattern.  But I've always been "geometrically challenged".  And when I look at the templates for the cutter, I'm so befuddled.  What do I do with them?  How do I know what to cut and then what to sew.  I've read Pat's blog, and seen her blocks and I am so in awe.  How did she do so many blocks so quickly.  Well, my plan for the rest of this week (when I have the time and no kids here) is to do something with this cutter.  I see all these people raving about it, and I'm not sure why I haven't been so impressed.  And so, it's time to find out.  Wish me luck.

Monday, June 14, 2010

June 14

Today is June 14, Flag Day.  But it is also my Daddy's birthday.  He would have been 83 today.  He passed away in 1993, and there isn't a day that goes by that I don't miss him.  To me, he was a pretty great guy.  He was a mailman, a letter carrier.  He carried the mail in the business section of our home town, and the people in these businesses knew my sister and I on sight.  We couldn't do anything wrong without someone finding out and telling my Dad.  Many times I would meet Daddy as he left the post office to start his route and walk the main street with him.  Everybody knew and loved Buzzy, as he was known.  My dad was also a musician.  He played the trumpet.  And I loved to hear my Dad play his horn.  But he also loved music, and taught me to love all types of music.  If you check my Zune you will find that there are many types of music there.

When I was a kid, my Dad played in my Uncle Ray's dance band.  The chubby lady on the right was my Grandma.  She lived with us most of my life and was my hero and mentor.  Next to her is my dad.  The band was called "The Silver Dollar Band", and I still have the silver dollars that my Uncle Ray used to give us on our birthdays.  Uncle Ray is the second to the right of my Dad.  The dances I remember them playing for the most were at a local fire hall.  There were steps leading up to the stage, and my sister and I thought we were really special since we were allowed to sit on the steps while the band was playing.

But Daddy also played in a marching band, which was also a concert band.  On July 4, my mom would drop him off at the beginning of the parade route in a nearby town, and then drive to our favorite parking area.  We would walk to "our spot" near the end of the parade route where many of our relatives would be waiting.  We would all sit together until the parade was over.  Then we all shared the picnics that my aunts had provided, and get ready for the concert.  This group of guys that were so good at playing all the patriotic marches that are so well known, would take their places on the stage and begin their concert.  The music was incredible and included the patriotic songs that were not marches, some classical pieces, and ending with the Overture of 1812.  After the concert, we had more time with the relatives, playing games and using our sparklers, before finally ending our long day with an incredible fireworks show.  Ah, those wonderful memories.  And so, Daddy, as another birthday passes without you, I salute you for all the wonderful things you taught me, all the love you gave me, and all the great memories that cannot be taken from me.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Disney Dreaming

We are just 97 days out from our next scheduled trip to Disney, and I've been "Disney Dreaming".  Family responsibilities dictate that we don't know when we're be able to go back, and I just want to make this trip very memorable for Rod and I.  I love my family dearly, but I love spending time alone with my hubby.  We were scheduled to stay at Pop Century, but to me it's more of a family resort.  Great for families with children, but I wanted something a little more quiet and romantic.  We checked into one of the deluxe resorts, but they were a little out of our budget.  Mary understood my desire for something different, and suggested Port Orleans - French Quarter.  These are the grounds around the resort, and our travel agent said she thinks it will be just what we're looking for.  We can walk along the river, enjoy the hot tub, or spend some time in the jazz club at the resort.  So it made me happy, and Rod is looking forward to it, too.

One of our scheduled days, the kids are doing a water park.  I love swimming, but water parks are not my bag, not to mention that you don't want to see this in a bathing suit!  So, we will  have breakfast together, but then Rod and I have most of the day to do whatever.  We're thinking we might take a boat ride to Downtown Disney for lunch.  And then we are planning to do dinner at the Liberty Tree Tavern.  Rod and I are both fans of the early American era, and have done Williamsburg several times.  So this is just perfect for us.  The dinner menu includes roast turkey, carved beef and smoked pork loin, and fruit crisp for dessert.  Then after dinner, we meet up with the kids again for the evening activities.

I don't know if too many people know this about me, but if I hadn't been the type of person who got homesick when I stayed at my aunt's, I would have gone to school for marine biology.  The oceans fascinate me, and I love looking at the various ocean dwellers.  So when I suggested having lunch one day at the Coral Reef, Rod lovingly said yes.  There is a huge aquarium that can be seen while you dine.  Doesn't this just look so romantic?  Rod's not a big seafood fan, but they also have some non-fishy items on the menu.  So this will be another meal just for two.  Oh well, enough Disney Dreaming -- now back to work.  Have a good weekend.