Sunday, September 30, 2012

Stitching Sunday

Here's part of the ornament set for Santa at the beach...not quite done.

I'm linking up with Kathy's Quilting for Slow Stitching Sunday. Can't wait to check out what others are working on today.

I'm also checking out flights to Houston for the quilt show. I thought there was a conflict with my husband's schedule but there isn't! My husband even called one of our friend's in Houston and hit them up to host me. I'm sure I'll get to see many members of the immediate Bailey family before I head to Paris. My biggest challenge will be Houston traffic but hopefully it will be kind of like riding a will come back to me. Might be time for me try out GPS in the rental car.

I've heard from several of you that you are going to be there also...I may have to wear a funny hat so you can find me in the sea of ladies. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Show and Tell

Yesterday's Breakfast Club had a small attendance. It's that time of the year when several of our regular attendees fly south for the winter. It gave us all more room to work but there isn't as much show and tell to share.

I'll start with the biggest quilt first. This is a "Curious George," quilt Kathy made for her grandson.

Kathy also got started on this Halloween quilt she will have quilted up in time for trick-or-treaters. It was a charm kit and the mouth is mega sized rick rack.

Jane brought in her finished, "Sidelights." Gorgeous!

Here is Julie Ann with a fun piece that is a quilt as you go technique. You top stitch the pieces onto a background that is already set up with the backing and batting. 

Megan attended the Valdez Quilt Show (I need to attend it one of these years) and took several classes. She is making two of these wonderful runners for Christmas gifts. Here's one in mainly red.

And her blue version.

She also made this notebook cover from scrap strips.

That reminded Barb she had made a notebook cover in Bernina Club. They learned felting, using a pintuck foot and of course those decorative stitches. 

Seems I have recruited another collector of Santa cross stitch ornaments!!! Barb is hooked...she's got several more Santa kits in her stash.

And here's a preview of the quilt for November's Breakfast Club. The quilt on the left is made with 2 1/2" squares and the one of the right is 2" squares. 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

New Comments

I am happy to say I have had some new folks leave comments...but some are set up as "no reply bloggers," so I can't respond...which makes me very sad. I mistakenly had myself set up as a no reply blogger until I read about needing to change my settings on Sew Many Ways. Just click the link and it will take you to a bookmarked page that addresses making your email address available (only to the blog's host when you leave a comment.) If you have a gmail account the "no reply blogger" is the default setting so it has to be changed by you.

Someone has commented recently asking me questions about constructing a Bucilla stocking and I can't help since she is set up as "no reply blogger." It's so frustrating to me! I very much want to help. 

Mini Quilt Retreat
Today is Breakfast Club. It feels like it got here very fast but I think that is because I went to the quilt store a couple of times since last month's class. I'm taking a UFO strip quilt to tackle. This month's pattern looks very easy and is fat quarter friendly but I spent about an hour in the studio last night trying to pull together fabrics and finally gave up...there just weren't enough creative brain cells available. The fumes from the wet glue on the wood flooring that's been pulled up was also starting to bother me.

Dogs in Transition
I swapped out dogs last night and got Tonka back...he saw me and ran for my truck...apparently he wanted to make sure he was coming home with me. He is the one of my two dogs that has the hardest time with "change." Jenny was very excited to get into the other car and head to her new home for a few days. It has really helped me to only have one dog at a time as I try to get house stuff done.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

My fortune cookie from last night said, "You will travel far and wide for both pleasure and work." DUH! Tell me something I don't know!

Before I can get on a plane to go anywhere there are a few chores. The wood floor has to come up in the sewing room. The diagnosis...improper installation...our bad. 

Doesn't look good. In order to use the boards again the glue would have to be removed...easiest would be to shave off or plane the back side. I don't see that ever happening in my schedule. I think it would be best to get the floor cleaned up down to bare concrete and put carpet down next summer. Done. Time left for quilting!!!!

It wasn't all bad today. The heads are hung.

The bear rug is also handy man did this while I was at Jazzercise this morning.

Lots of other wildlife metal sculptures got hung quilts. I do have one huge wall in our bedroom reserved for a dead animals are allowed in my studio or the bedroom...only cute Bernese Mountain Dogs that are very much alive. 

Tomorrow I get my hair done...thank goodness...I could use a visit to my favorite psychiatrist.  

Speaking of mental health...

I did check on the Houston quilt show know...there really is a chance I can work this in as part of my trek to France. Houston is "on the way," to Paris when you look at a world map. The quilt show is November 1-4. An extra suitcase would definitely need to be purchased in Houston because I need a lot of fabric therapy. I've got family and friends I can hit up for a place to stay! Can you feel my giddiness?

Monday, September 24, 2012

Design Wall Monday

I was going to skip Design Wall issues have me "swamped." But...I actually finished a top so it's time for a little pat on the back. All those house problems will still be here when I get done taking this break.

Here's the kit I have been working on since June. I tried valiantly not to purchase any more of the border fabric but I got to a point where it just wasn't working for me so off to the quilt store I went. At that point, buying a half a yard of fabric was worth my time and money to get it done.  

This is a big quilt...99x99...bigger than a queen. 
Maybe you noticed it looks bumpy...

More building drama.
I guess the waterfall from my dripping dishwasher line has left me with a ruined wood floor. It is horribly warped. Every day it looks worse.

My advice...don't put wood flooring in your basement because water makes it's way down. Our last basement had tile and carpeting. We did have a pipe break one winter...water ever where but the tile was fine. (We hadn't put the carpet yet.) I had another leak in the boiler room that reach into the tiled big deal.

Tomorrow, my new best friend, Jeff the handyman, will pull up the boards and we'll see if anything else is going on between the wood and the cement floor. Not expecting to find any real problems...maybe the moisture barrier that was painted on the cement has a tear. Jeff tells me concrete is actually a porous surface that takes 80 years to cure. Who knew? That sure makes me look at all buildings and roads a little I really won't be able to sleep at night!

And to put it's been rather wet in our state lately. It's official...we broke another weather record in 2012...most snow and rainfall for a year! I think there is moss growing behind my ears.

Friday night I was depressed because ultimately this new crisis means I won't be turning on my longarm next summer...cuz I'll be putting in new flooring. You can bet I'm going with carpet and tile. 

And where was my knight in shining armor? Flying a trip between Germany and Calgary. The life of a pilot's wife...stuff always happens when they are gone.

I need trip somewhere...I'd love to go to the Houston quilt show...I wonder...might have to check the flight schedule later today. 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Dog Days

I haven't talked about Jenny and Tonka lately but as fate would have it...they will be together in a new home. My favorite vet tech who has watched them for me while I travel, lost one of her two male Bernese. Her boy with irritable bowel disease had an episode and then he went into bloat...which is pretty much what it sounds like...the stomach bloats. As I understand it, bloat is often fatal and with the IBD history, it was too much. Her other Bernese male, Moritz, has been battling lymphoma since November. He is doing remarkably well but there is a limit to the window for chemo treatments and he will soon be entering another hurdle. 

The dogs' new family has allowed me to keep them until close to the time I leave. It helps them have more time to deal with their boys and I love having Jenny and Tonka's company as long as I can. But we just started a new phase...the new famliy will take one of the dogs at a time to spend the weekend with them. They have some acreage they spend time on most weekends so the dogs have lots of room to roam.

Here's Tonka (on the left) with his buddy, Moritz.

His new family sent me this photo tonight...he's going to stay one more night with them. I am so happy to see him hanging with his friend. Tonka is the sweetest boy!

Look at all those pretty fall colors. The weather looks a little nicer where they are than it does at my house. I'm sure he's getting nice and worn out every day!

Poor Jenny had a much too quiet weekend with me.

Now I feel guilty...I think we had better go for a quick walk.

Stitching Sunday

Just a quick note...

Here's the newest Bucilla ornament I've finished. Santa on vacation.

Santa gets some beach accessories with the next five ornaments. I could use some time at the beach in the sun. Another storm blew in yesterday so it's raining. There were strong winds yesterday and I lost power for five hours. I didn't have a book loaded on my I took a long nap. Then I couldn't get to sleep last night...I did have a book loaded in the Kindle by then. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Would You Like Some Cheese With That Whine?

First...I am so lucky...I have a great life...but there are some days that are "not so fun." This week has been a little tilted toward "not so fun." This year we have broken a couple of weather records. Last winter we had the most snowfall. This July we had the coolest temps on record for that month. September is turning out to be extremely wet. We have been socked by two major storms with hurricane force a couple of smaller storms. It feels like it's been raining forever and I'm glad we still own a boat because I don't have enough energy to build an ark. (More storms are in the way)

I don't walk dogs in hurricanish they are stir crazy. It's not fun to go anywhere because it's a hurricane out there! must take advantage of bad weather and work inside. Today the electrician will come to fix my breakers in the studio so can't really sew until then. a day that felt like an episode of "I Love Lucy," I had an instant waterfall from the ceiling of my basement cascade down onto my Nolting longarm. It's a long story but I had a drip from a dishwasher hose from the kitchen that sits right above my studio...the drip led to the lens of a large fluorescent light in my studio. It had been filling up in the lens for days and finally reached its weight limit and broke free.

I bought a dehumidifier and have been running it for the past two days (whenever we have electricity...the hurricane force winds have been knocking that out every so often.) I think my Nolting is okay but I won't really know until I run it and that's looking like it won't happen until next summer.

On the up side...I have found a gem of a handyman to help me finish this house. The closet shelves are done...except for me staining them. My handyman is going to come back soon to handle all those things that are usually on the "honey do list." Hanging house numbers, hanging animal heads, fixing the buckling wood floor in my studio (that happened before the water feature event.) I need to order some blinds...and he can hang them. I need to get towel just never seems to end.

Hope you had some cheese to enjoy with this whine.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Design Wall Monday

(Heavy Sigh)
New construction has it's problems. Little hiccups. The electrical breaker for the outlets in my studio keeps tripping when I try to sew on my machine. We had this problem with another set of outlets and that breaker got replaced...problem solved. I think I need to run an extension cord from another room for now. Too early to call and find out when it can be repaired.

I was totally energized to work on the borders of my wildlife quilt when the power outages stopped me. This quilt is a kit and I don't have enough of the border fabric to just do traditional borders. (I made the quilt larger than the kit's dimensions.) I am determined not to buy anymore fabric for the boarder. So my solution is to extend a block that borders a panel block into the border. This photo will give you the idea.

Sew many pretty batiks have been released lately. I am trying to satisfy myself with adorable charm packs. Love these new "Over the Rainbow," batiks from Moda.

Last week the railings on our second floor landing were installed! I still have to stain them and poly coat...who knows how long that will take me.

Construction starts on closet shelves today. 

I got a little side tracked. Join Judy at Patchwork Times to see great design walls with projects in progress.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Stitching Sunday

I really made some progress on my ornaments this week. I finished the last three.

Plus, I finished the reindeer. Here are Frosty and Santa again.

Here's the stocking that goes with these ornaments. I finished it in 2008.

I'm linking up with Kathy for her Slow Sunday Stitching. Check what others are hand stitching.

Friday, September 14, 2012

French Friday

I want to devote Fridays' to concentrating on my French. I have never taken French...I took three years of Spanish in high school and that is what I found myself trying to speak when we were in Paris last month. Then my brain would freeze up.

Somewhere in all of our moving boxes is a nice, expensive French program for the computer. I didn't give up today because I couldn't find that program. Instead I found several places to visit on the web for brief French lessons. 

I must learn the phrase, "Are there any quilt shops or fabric shops nearby?

Au revior.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Tourist Tuesday

I have an idea...maybe you'd like to learn about my adventures as a tourist in Paris. So to get ready I thought I'd start with familiar territory and create a video of our Super Cub flight on Saturday. I plan to talk on the videos I make from Paris but the Super Cub is too noisy to narrate during flight. I'm learning!

An afterthought. I wanted to mention the music I picked. It is from the movie, "Out of Africa," This particular music piece is where Robert Redford takes Meryl Streep up in his new airplane. Perfect! The movie came out in 1985...the year I met my husband. I remember going to see it with him. I heard the music as we were flying in the Super Cub. So perfectly romantic. We needed some caribou herds to fly over but we weren't far enough north for that.

Incidentally, the soundtrack from, "Out of Africa," is ranked 15th on the American Film Institute's top 25 American film soundtracks. I thought about the Superman movie too...when he takes Lois Lane flying. Lots of great music.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Design Wall Monday

I  finished a flimsy! This is a free pattern from Anthology Fabrics called "Ripples." It requires a jelly roll and a layer cake (10" squares).

I need to add borders to this quilt...

So much to do today...gotta go. Join Judy at Patchwork Times to see all the other great projects

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Stitching Sunday

Frosty has arrived in Alaska.

Frosty's snowflakes are dusting our mountain tops.

I love these two lone birch trees that stand together in death...there must be a tale about a pair of lovers wrapped in their bark.

I'm working one of Santa's reindeer. I think he will be a quick ornament and I may get another ornament started by next Sunday.

Fall has arrived. The leaves are starting to change color. My husband was home for two days so we did what many Alaskans do on pretty days...go flying. My husband has a new toy, a Super Cub. It seats two. 

Here's a full view of the plane.

Nice big tires for landing on gravel. I'll share a little bit more about our flight on Tuesday.

Friday, September 7, 2012

A Bear of a Week

I am making progress unpacking...just so I can pack up and move to Paris. It is crazy! Lets check out the most important room in the studio.

This week's big chore in the studio was putting two more sets of chrome shelves together. This set has wheels. I filled them up pretty quickly. I have two treadle machines that need work and I just don't know where to put room in the studio for them. 

At some point I will get those huge sheets of Styrofoam-looking insulation for design wall panels but for now I am going to clip a sheet of flannel to the shelf and use it.

Here's a little panoramic view of the studio.

You found the spot where I dumped a few items.

I think I need to get a helmet video else can I catch my exciting wildlife encounters? Last night I had my closest bear encounter with the dogs. We were taking a quick walk. We were almost to our driveway when all of the sudden a pretty good sized black bear jumped out of the brush. He was very surprised to see us and quickly turned around and darted back into the woods. Luckily I had both dogs on leashes because they seemed to think it was a good idea to try and chase it. It was quite struggle for me to gain control of them...they pulled me to the ground in their excitement...but we are all okay. I took two Advil as soon as we got home.

 It's funny how much bigger a black bear looks when it's right in front of you!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

It's Instinctive

I just can't fight my nature sometimes...I am a gatherer. I was just going to grab some milk at Walmart...when I remembered I needed some gel for my hair. That meant leaving the grocery area. Before I knew it, I was walking down the craft aisle. I spied this adorable case. I have a continental move coming up...suitcases interest me...even itty bitty ones.

The circular shape is adorable...hmmm...lets see what's inside.

A case for the cool little plastic disks I store my sequins and beads from Bucilla felt stocking kits! SWEET!!!!

I found my storage disks in a sporting goods store in the fishing tackle section at least five years ago. These are just like those only instead of a "Plano" logo they have a "Creative Options" logo. I did show restrain...there was a larger case that held six disks. I only use four. 

While I'm in a divulgitory (new word) mood, let me share another great sewing room gadget I picked up at Breakfast Club last week.

It's a little ironing board that clamps onto any table. Alaskan made. Perfect for taking to classes. Perfect for a Paris sewing room. 

Now I will justify my purchases...I have been working like crazy on our house...that still isn't moved into or completely finished despite our upcoming move to Paris. The bids came back for the railing and closet shelves...well within our budget. Work begins next week on those areas of the house. So it has given me a boost of energy to continue to unpack what I can now...and clean. I still had a few lights and windows that had "construction grime" on them. I have a huge load for the Salvation Army...mostly empty containers of every size...they just don't work in the new house.

Clearing the garage is the next major hurdle. We need to park cars in it...winter is coming! I bought two chrome shelf units from Costco today to get started. They look so little in the garage. Guess I should have bought some more. They are really heavy and one of my son's was with me today. Too bad Bernese Mountain Dogs can't load and unload for me! At least they are very supportive...they always think I am great at everything.

Time to fill the new "suitcase."

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Stitching Sunday

On my trip to Colorado I finished two more Santa ornaments, " First Mate Santa," and "Captain Santa."

I'm also working on another felt ornament for Christmas.

I'm joining Kathy's link for stitching projects. One of these days I will get to my handwork on quilting projects.