Thursday, February 09, 2017

When Life Gives You Lemons...

... well, you know the saying. But I'll be honest with you, the lemons have been piling up in our house without any lemonade in sight. And man, do I love me some homemade lemonade.
[DISCLAIMER: feel free to jump to the end to see what little I've been sewing all month. This next section is NOT quilting related]

 I've noticed a trend over the last few years with January being less than ideal in our house and this year was no exception. Between my son and I, it's been awful. First, my son was sick, fighting pneumonia. Then I had some headache issues again. Next up was some more neuro-psych testing for him for an ADHD diagnosis. That came back positive which wasn't a huge shock since it often goes hand-in-hand with autism, but there is also some big red flags for a learning disability which we now need to start testing for and we also need to start expressive language therapy. The icing on the cake, however, was the urinary tract infection that I got while on our Disney cruise this past weekend that has now spread to my kidney (along with a possible kidney stone). These 2 things are listed as possible side effects of the medication that I take for my migraines. I just can't catch a break. So either my kidney pain will either subside with the meds or will get worse in the next day (indicating a stone) at which time I will go in for an x-ray or CT scan to confirm. Lucky me!

Needless to say, I've done very little sewing, very little blogging, and even less reading of my favorite blogs. In fact, I've had to take a deep breath and click on that little button on my reader that says "MARK ALL AS READ." You have no idea how much it pains me to do that, but there was no way I was ever going to catch up, so let me apologize now if you think I've been ignoring you!

Okay, so here is what I managed to sew this month. I made 2 blocks for myself - a bubble block and a dutch windmill block:



I also made some progress on the getting the Aspen Frost Jubilee blocks put together.  Having my design wall next to a window is sometimes less than ideal for photos, but this was the best I could get:


Even though I missed setting an official goal for February, I still need to get my son's BB-8 quilt finished. Despite my best efforts to get it done, it proved to be too big for me to baste at home. I really, really hope to get some outside help in getting in basted on a long arm so that I can quilt it on my DSM.

That's all for now. Time to get better.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Rope Bowls - A Fun Little Gift Project

The trouble with Instagram is that I stumble upon cute craft projects that I might not see otherwise. Enter my new obsession of crafting with cotton clothesline rope. In a matter of a few hours, while watching some tv, I can make a cute little gift like this:


It's a great way to use those favorite little fabric scraps that are too small to use in a real project but you can bring yourself to actually throw them out. I used this tutorial here in case you're interested in trying this yourself.

I needed a way to hide the unfinished end of the bowl so I just folded over a piece of fabric with my label on it. It's not perfect but it got the job done.


I gifted this bowl to one of my neighbors but I liked it so much that I had to make another one for me to keep. I used some of the fabric scraps that are in my Turquoise Facets quilt.

 

This time I finished the bowl off using the same decor weight fabric that I used for my dining room placemats. 


I like the look much better, however, I need to be more aware of where the end is in relation to the last bit of woven fabric. I don't like the way it covers part of it up, especially since it's one of my favorite fabric scraps. I plan on making some of these as gifts for my son's teachers, using their favorite colors. I also want to make some coordinating coasters for my living room.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Finish Along - Q1 Planned Finishes

Click here for the 2017 Finish-Along Details

Last year I attribute a lot of my successful finishes to my participation in the 2016 Finish Along so it should come as no surprise that I will be participating again this year. It really helped to keep me focused and was a great motivator for me, being able to check a project off of my to-do list. So, here is my list for the first quarter of the year. Yes, it's ambitious, but it's supposed to be. Better to have too much and roll it over, than to have too little and run out of things to do. :)

1. My 2017 Stash Bee Faux Purple Plaid Quilt -- this is to be a wedding gift for my cousin in March. Here are the blocks that I've received so far, up on my design wall.


2.  Twin sized BB-8 quilt for my son's 7th birthday.  The backing fabric arrived yesterday so I should be able to finish up the top and get it basted by next week. That will give me plenty of time to get it quilted and bound before his birthday in March.


3.  Set of 4 Rope Coasters for our living room, using this rope and some of the scraps from this fabric bin, all which coordinate with the rest of the handmade decor in our living room.


4.  I'd like to transform these quilt sandwich circles into 2 free motion holiday ornaments, like the ones found in this tutorial.


5.  Transform these 2 layer cakes into one of these patterns that I worked on in EQ7. It's an easy project and I even have the backing fabric for this project so it's doable.


6.  I've been using this sad little eye mask for a few years now. (I think it was included in a game that my son had).  I don't use it all of the time, mostly when I have a migraine episode during the day and want to block out the light or if my husband and I are both in bed and he would like to read a bit before sleeping. I'd much rather have a pretty eye mask made with this fabric:


7.  Finish putting together these blocks into a finished top, and get this Aspen Frost Jubilee quilt  done!


8.  Welcome Panel - I have a few whole cloth panels that found their way into my stash. This one is from Benartex and while it's not exactly my style, it would be a nice free motion quilting project that I can get done in a day. It would make a nice gift for one of my aunts.


That's 8 documented projects outside of my monthly bee obligations and other sewing. Again, it's a lot but that's okay. It's good to have a list.

Thursday, January 05, 2017

January - Ready, Set, Goal!


Hello 2017! I am so ready to conquer this year and get things headed in the right direction. I've always been on the fence about the New Year's holiday. Do I like it? Don't I?  It signifies the end of the Christmas season which always makes me sad. I love having the house decorated for the holidays and the soft glow of the Christmas tree in the corner is especially soothing. The thought of putting everything away always makes me a little depressed. But on the flip side, the new year signifies a fresh start, an opportunity for a new beginning. I think the thing that tips the scale in favor of the new year is back to school. What can I say, I love my first grader dearly but after 2 and a half weeks at home, I'm ready for the new year to begin. If for no other reason than to get back into our normal routine.

So, to get back into my routine it's time to set a monthly goal. This year I will again be participating in the One Monthly Goal project hosted by Patty over at Elm Street Quilts. I had one gift that I didn't finish in time for Christmas and that was the BB-8 quilt for my son's new Star Wars room. Here is what I have so far:


For this month I need to enlarge this to twin size, purchase some backing fabric, and baste it so that it will be ready to quilt for February. I'm very optimistic. I can do this!
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