Thursday, July 29, 2010

Life is Like a Bowl of Chocolates just never know what you're going to get, do you?  This has been one of those weeks where I've gotten a lot of things, and some of those things were things that make a mom's heart sputter.  I'll get to those in a minute.

First was some framing.  I didn't know what I was going to get with this white frame.  I wanted something that would go in the room where it's intended as it's a very light room, but....

My Quaker House
Blackbird Designs
40 count French Vanilla 

I sat on this piece forever (since July 2008) and didn't know if I wanted to make a needle roll out of it or frame it.  I think I want to take the frame off and paint it and sand it down and have some of the white show through.  What do you think?  Also, the matt is not quite that color - more of a green blue - don't know what is up with the camera!

I started a new project because I was getting a little tired of Adam and Eve's, so I kitted up a few things and started on this:

Susanna Lane
The Scarlett Letter

This is really a lot of fun to stitch.  I couldn't get a closer picture of it because it's fairly wide, but I managed to get that done in the past week.  It's the one of the things that calmed my nerves.

I also got four more of the As Time Goes By quilt finished.  It helps when they're already cut out - just sit and put the pedal to the metal:

Now eight down, four more to go.

Calm nerves are just what I need right now.  It's really been a week - starting off with a visit to my front porch by the men in blue - well actually, one man and women and they were dressed in brown - Oakland Country Sheriff Deputies.  Kind of a scary thing when they come knocking at 12:30 at night.  Well, it wasn't anything too terrible.  Just an incidence of some eggs being thrown at my son's friend's neighbors and my son's car being there and the license given to the police.  Since my son didn't have the common sense to leave the scene of the crime, he's on a few days of grounding.  Now, I've been known to throw a few eggs in my time (it was always a big High School Senior Skip Day thing - rite of passage), so I kind of have to smile.  If that's the worse thing that he gets wrapped up in, I think I'm blessed.  But the grounding should serve as a gentle reminder to tow the line.  Whether he had an egg in his hand or not, throwing at people (if that's exactly what happened) is not a good thing.  He's had Physics - he knows the consequences.

But then two days later, I'm in and out of hospitals with my daughter and then my son.  Possible pneumonia with DD and possible fractured leg with my DS.  You have to love a good time, don't you?  No pneumonia for DD, but possible asthma.  UGH.  And DS - huge collision on the soccer field during his summer gym class.  Diagnosis - badly bruised and sprained ankle and leg - not broken, thank goodness.  Of course, all of this with my son has to happen while I'm sitting in a car dealership across town with my tires and brakes lying on the floor!  That's enough to frazzle a mom's hair.

So to calm my nerves in between all these fun events, I stitched and fiddled around in the craft room, unloading shelves, going through things.  Physical activity is a sure fire way to calm myself down.  And I found another pizza box treasure.  An I Spy Quilt that I started for my kids.  It was part of the reason I saved up to buy an embroidery machine just so I could embroider the words on the side.

Did I ever do that?  Of course not - this is what it looks like:

Two rows put together.  And my favorite blocks so far:

My sister and my son when he was smaller, and for some reason that zebra driving the car cracks me up. 

And, of course, we have to have a block that has something to do with sewing:

I've pulled this quilt out and am going to try to finish it up.  My kids are both older now, but I still think it will make them smile.   Everything is cut out and ready to go, so no excuse not to.

Well, that's all the news that's fit to report this week.  What a week!  Dear sister is coming in tomorrow and I can't wait.  But I've got a ton of things to do before she gets here though and haven't been a very good blog reader this week at all.  I don't know how much time I'm going to have in the next few weeks, but I'll at least look, if I don't comment.

Have a wonderful weekend!! 


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What Happens When My ADD Rears Its Head

I have to give a shout out again to Valerie once again for winning my giveaway.  I'm so thrilled you won!  Actually I wish that everyone could have won, but I don't think I could find enough flower frogs.  Perhaps in the future!

I have made so little progress on stitching.  I don't know what it is - summer?  And I notice a lot of my blogging buddies are experiencing the same thing.  I know that I have a hard time sitting down at night.  But I got a little more done on my A&E sampler:

Not much since the last picture.  It's been too hot to sit under the Ott light even after the A/C was fixed.  I even started a new stitching project although there's not much to show - a non A&E!!  Hopefully, I'll have a progress picture next time.  All I have now is a lot of green!!

All this weekend, I had a song going through my head - Let's Go Crazy by Prince.  Not my most favorite songs by him, but I couldn't get it out of my head.  My intentions were to get into my craft room and clean out the closet for my sister's arrival so that we could put the shelving in.  Well, one thing led to another - resulting in a huge mess.  I know, my blog started off as a stitching blog, but bear with me - you just gotta go with the flow, right?

All the Farmer's Wife blocks done for the month.  The pink and green one at the bottom was the one I had to recut and piece over.  Now I'm caught up and awaiting next months!!

Next part done on the red, black and white quilt!!!

Two more Civil War blocks.  Although the one on the left seems to have a serious problem that I didn't notice until I went to iron it out.  I know what I did and have since ripped it out to resew, along with those blocks from my last post - UGH, I hate ripping things out.

Now this is where the ADD comes in.  Those pictures above were done here and there during the week when I could catch an hour or so. Then I thought it was time to get into the closet and clean it out for the anticipated shelving, but what resides in the closet?  Well, pizza boxes with quilts in some form of cutting, or finishing - along with a multitude of other things that catch my attention.  I've posted a picture of the infamous pizza boxes before.  They're just the right size for holding my projects.  Anyway, I start peeking into the pizza boxes (even though they're all labeled) and I come across projects all cut out and ready to sew.  I have a tendency to go through marathon cutting sessions so that I can sew to my hearts content when I have the time.  Now my mind is much more into sewing than clearing out the closet, so ADD kicks in and this results:

Four blocks from a quilt called As Time Goes By.  Aren't the colors wonderful?  Do you see why I just had to sew and not clean???  They were all cut out - calling my name!

And if that wasn't enough, more ADD kicked in and I decided to now start on something else.  I posted these blocks a while ago:

At the time I posted them, I had good intentions of moving right along with the quilt.  But I think that was when I painted the room and packed everything up.  Well, I couldn't find the blocks after.  Not anywhere.  Well, they made an appearance in the closet cleaning (in an unmarked box), so I started on the next section:

Nothing much to see here except 12 blocks in progress with the next row pinned on and ready to sew!  The quilt will look like this when it's finished although that will be awhile seeing as I have some kind of problem sticking to just one quilt at a time.  But variety is the spice of life, isn't it?

All this quilting craziness resulted in this mess - it looks like a bomb hit this chair:

Now surely you can see the garbage bag to the left side - I honestly was trying to clean - honest!  LOL  Well, it has been cleaned, but that's what everything ended up looking like when I was finished for the day.

And then to add to the craziness I had to purchase these - like I don't have enough going on, right?  I couldn't resist - I saw them on Amazon and had to have them.  Just love Amazon for those great prices:

I just love working on the Farmer's Wife quilt so much that I want more!!!  I think I have to be totally certifiable with the Nearly Insane quilt though.  I've seen it done in red and white fabrics.  Stunning.  I'd post a picture, but hate to snatch a picture from someone's blog that I don't know.  Just let me say, that my heart did a thunk when I saw it.  So in addition to starting on Dear Jane here in the near future, I'd say I'm set.  Or perhaps crazy!  Crazy is good, don't you think?

Well, that's been my week.  I'm off now to string lights into a huge (stage sized) piece of fabric to replicate a night sky for my DD's play.  I can't believe the performances are next week.  This summer certainly is flying by.  The next couple weeks are going to be crazy ones with my sister coming in and a small vacation, but hopefully I'll find time to keep up with blogs and maybe some stitching and quilting too.

Thanks again to everyone that entered my giveaway and to all the new followers - I was overwhelmed how many new ones I saw.  I'll be tracking down your blogs soon and  I hope that you'll stop and say hello every once in a while.  I love reading your comments!  Have a great week!

Monday, July 19, 2010

AND THE WINNER IS.............

Wow - I'm amazed at all the people who signed up for this giveaway.  Hello to all my new followers and to all the ones that have been following me for a while.  I'm overwhelmed!  Out of 193 entries (giving for some people having one, two or three chances), the winner is:

Since Mr. Random Organizer doesn't like me pasting pictures, I had to pick with my eyes closed:

It's Number 14 - and Number 14 is:

VALERIE OF FOG CITY DWELLER!!!!!  Congratulations Valerie.  Send me your snail mail and I'll get this right out to you!!

And thank you to everyone who entered - my new followers (wow, I can't believe how many jumped on the bandwagon), and to all my old followers too.  I'm so glad that I've met all of you!!!!!!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Giveaway Reminder, My 100th Post and Not Much Else

I really don't have much to say, but wanted to remind everyone about my giveaway.  If you haven't signed up, just leave a comment on my previous post.  I'll be pulling a name first thing on Monday, July 19th.  I'm really taken back by all the new followers that have jumped on board.  I'm so happy to meet all of you and if I haven't visited your blog yet (if you have one), I will soon.

And yes, this is my 100th post!  Woo Hoo!  I can't believe that it snuck up me.  I feel like there should be balloons and dancing boys!  A champagne bottle uncorking or at least some sparkling water.  Well, maybe not on the dancing boys - my DH may not approve!  LOL  But I'm having a hard time believing that I've made this many posts.  I promised a giveaway when I reached that point and it will happen.  I think that I'll combine that and my 2 year blogging milestone together.  Or maybe not.  Maybe I'll sneak in another giveaway after the current one.   Aw, two more giveaways would be better, right?

Not much has been going on around here.   Not much stitching and not much quilting either.  But I do have a small finish that I had framed:

Petites Lettres Rouges
Freebie from Blackbird Designs

I sat on this piece for the longest time trying to figure out what to do with it.  A pincushion, a flat fold, what?  I finally decided to get it framed because I need some small things for my craft room.  The matt color looks too pink in this picture - IRL it looks more like the lighter letters of the sampler.  I think it came out sweet and will look great in the craft room.

The reason there hasn't been much going on is that our air conditioning died.  Boy, this has been a year - first our furnace earlier in the year, then the appliances and now the A/C.  I guess that's what happens when the house reaches the 20 year mark.  We've been without it for a week.  Long story on that one - one company not diagnosing the problem and giving us freon we didn't need.  The condensor was blown - so it's been a back and forth thing trying to get it fixed - by another company.  The new A/C is being put in as I write this, but it's been rather hot to do much of anything.  Sitting under my Ott Light and stitching was just not something that I wanted to do.  But that should be the last it, hopefully, as far as major expenses.  I think we're going to be living on hot dogs and beans for a while!  LOL

The basement has been relatively cool (thankfully), so I did get in a little quilting, but not much - it's hot standing around an ironing board too.  I worked on the Marti Michell quilt.  There are six of these blocks.

Why is this one not totally put together (nor the other five)?  Well, I pulled a stupid human trick and sewed the corner blocks the wrong way (and there were specific instructions to watch orientation which I obviously ignored - DUH), so the green and white squares have to be all taken off (all 24 of them) and put back on correctly.  UGH!!!  The more I work with this quilt, the less I like it.  The fabric has to be some of the thinnest I've ever worked with, stretches like crazy and so having to rip out anything is a tedious process.  So on to Plan B:

The Farmer's Wife Quilt - Two more down and one to go and I'm caught up for the month!  The one on the right, Corn and Beans, gave me headaches.  It's not perfect, but I'm happy.  And I see a wrinkle in the black and white one - I'll have to investigate that - probably an ironing error.  The third one would have been done, but the rotary cutting instructions that came with the BOM didn't jive with the templates so I have to cut out a whole new block.

I haven't posted any thrifty finds lately - probably because there hasn't been much, but I do have a few.  I found this glove mold one day while I was out and about at an antique store I had never seen before:

I've never come across a glove mold in any of the stores I had been in before and it was a pretty good price I think - $10 so it came home with me.

This weekend I was on a secret mission.  I can't disclose any details right now, but will next month.  Anyway, I drove to Ohio and my destination was really close to Sauder Village, so I stopped in.  I had the T-Bag pattern, but had to pick up these fabrics.  I just love pink and black:

Then another sign for my craft room:

The sign seemed fitting because I feel at times that I'm going at this quilting like a crazy fool.

Ohio has a ton of antique shops, thrift stores, etc.  I wish that I could have stopped at every one that I saw during my journey, but I only ended up stopping at one.  I'll try to stop at more when I go back in a couple of weeks.  But I did find a couple things all for under $10.  A deal to me:

The je t'aime ribbons came from the quilt store, but I came away with yards of pretty laces, a jar full of buttons, and the large glass jar filled with crochet cottons and hankies that someone was edging.

Pure Irish linen:
I was a happy camper.  Hopefully when I go back in a couple weeks (with sister in tow), we'll get a really early start, do what we have to do and mindlessly drift our way back home via all the antique stores.  Speaking of  my sister coming in - she's all geared up for our annual antique tour, touristy dinner at Frankenmuth and all the other crazy things we got into while she was here last year.  Her price of admission: putting up the shelves in my craft room.  I'm the crafty one (although she paints), but she could appear on an episode of This Old House for all the things that she knows how to do.

Thank you so much for your response to my giveaway and don't forget to sign up on my previous post if you haven't yet.  I wish that I had enough flower frogs to send one to everyone.  But I guess the best I can do is find them and give them away.  But thanks again for being a regular follower, a new follower or a lurker.  Your comments mean the world to me.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

It's Giveaway Time

First off, where did all you people come from?  My followers, that is?  I had been planning to have a giveaway when I reached 300 followers, and when my back was turned I zoomed up to 309!  Welcome to all the new people and thank you so much for following!!!!!!  I hope you enjoy reading my blog and it gives me the opportunity to find yours too or to make your friendship even if you don't have a blog.

Well, in celebration of now 300+ followers, it's time for the giveaway:

Yep, another flower frog (quilt not included).  I'll fill it with a few goodies (what - I'm not sure yet).  So here's all you have to do.

1.  You must be a follower
2.  Leave me a comment that you'd like to be entered into the drawing
3.  If you wish to blog about it you can and I'll enter you in for a second try
4.  If you post a link on your blog, I'll give you three chances.
5.  If you don't have a blog, please leave me an email address where I can find you.

I will pick a winner on Monday, July 19th.

There's not much going on at the ranch this past week or so.  Crafting has taken a back seat to a lot of things - primarily because I'm like a walking zombie with lack of sleep.  I have to thank those who offered suggestions on tackling the insomnia thing.  I'm trying them, and so far not much has helped.  The high heat around here and an ancient A/C unit doesn't help matters much either.  But I've gotten a little bit accomplished:

I started a new sampler:

The Apple Tree Sampler
Hawkins House

Please ignore the hoop marks.  I usually don't stitch in a hoop, but lack of sleep has rendered my brain unable to stitch pieces of fabric onto scroll rods or rather the patience to do it - plus the design is pretty small anyway.  How I've even stitched this far is beyond me.

On one of my more lucid days I got these done:

Four more Farmer's Wife blocks.  I was hoping to get all seven of them done, but realized that I hadn't cut out enough pieces for the other three (head slap moment), so I was going to go to Plan B - the Marti Mitchell quilt, but realized I had cut the center square of the block the wrong size!  Another head slap moment.  Luckily I had the forethought when I ordered the BOM to order some additional yardage of the fabric, so WHEW!  But I was sweating bullets for a while until I found the fabric.  But then I got no further - not one block sewn.

So that's been about it for me.  I feel like I've accomplished nothing!  I did have a funny moment this week from Kim.  Kim is Ms. Thrift Shopper Supreme.  She finds the greatest things.  One of the things that she collects are orphaned salt and pepper shakers.  When I'm out and about and I see an orphan I  always think of her and her collection and pick them up for her if I think she'd like it.  Well, I found this one recently (sorry Kim I stole the picture from your blog) and sent it out to her:

Almost immediately the box that I had sent her arrived back in my mailbox with this:

An oil can, in my box and with my note!  LOL  I really got a kick out of this.  I told her that this will be come the official mail box and note for mailing those orphans.  Kind of like a Traveling Pants kind of thing.  Thanks so much Kim - I've been searching for one in the lighter color!!!  Now, about that needle punch piece I'd like to put on it.............

Hope that everyone is staying nice and cool.  We're really going through a heat wave here in Michigan and I guess today is suppose to be the hottest day - a cool down for a couple of days - and then right back at it!  UGH!

Thanks again for all your wonderful comments and for following me.  I really am tickled each and every time I read your comments.  I know that I've met some of the most wonderful friends through blogging and always love seeing the things that everyone makes.  You're truly all an inspiration!!