Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us; And confirm for us the work of our hands; Yes, confirm the work of our hands.
Psalm 90:17

Friday, June 6, 2014

There was no post in May~

    I guess I was too busy for blogs in May. I started work on Shakespeare.
I made this for the front garden:
I made this for a production of Beauty and the Beast:
We took these guys to an amusement park... 

 ...and to Boston to meet the great grandparents:
                                                I visited a wonderful quilt exhibition here:

                                              And then there was this giant rubber duck :

                                                I even had some contest fun with this cutie:
It was a busy month.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

April BOM

  Well, if  I'm down to one post a month, it can only mean it's show time. And it has been. "Next to Normal" opened and had a very successful run. I was helping backstage and Philip and Jacie were stagehands-- Jacie was actually named Assistant Stage Manager! I never got tired of hearing those wonderful voices, which is unusual because even my most beloved shows can wear on me night after night. We did not do the last weekend, though because Jacie and I were opening in our own show, "The Water Engine" at the college. I was supposed to only do costumes but one of the actors dropped out and Director Matthew was kind to let me fill in. So. Much. Fun! That's two shows for me this season; after a dry spell of six years it feels wonderful.
The Water Engine cast and crew--- how cool was it that our director arranged for an antique car club to bring some cars by for us to pose with. Too bad we can barely see the car!
Here is Jacie at the wheel-- yes, she's playing a boy once again. Don't know how much longer she can pull it off.
And here with Eric, the young man who played her dad in the show and also whose camera took these pictures that I stole from Facebook. Thanks, Eric!

This car had a really cool trunk attached to the back. I liked posing with it because the trunk hides so much of my, umm, trunk.

 The winter themed block of the month continues on over at Quilt Doodle Doodles. Here is April's block; some very simple and pretty stars. I love the gold and blue together. This was the latest in the month I got my BOM done so far. But I was kinda busy...

Thursday, March 6, 2014

March BOM

Quilt Doodles BOM March Block:

I changed it up a bit as I did last month by using all 2 1/2" squares instead of the cream colored strip. I also added a little cardinal because it's a tree, in snow and I'm in Virginia. It's practically illegal to have a snowy tree without a cardinal in Virginia. Even when you live on the beach~y side.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

A disappointing DaGMT~

  Getting twenty minutes of sewing a day wasn't the problem. Except for days that were eaten up by grandchildren (which I will never apologize for) and days when I wasn't in the geographical location of my sewing machine (North Carolina Christian youth conference chaperone...I made hexies in the car for well over my twenty minutes!) I was sewing, well, something. I just didn't work on the finishes. I got a little quilting done on a bow tie quilt that I really don't like much but I swore not to waste it. I didn't touch Bottled Rainbows, except to move it out of the way for some thing else. The only quilt finish was Kal's tractors. But before I depress myself, lemme look at what I did do last month:

~ Kal's Tractors finished and delivered
~Pippin's Street top finished and sandwiched/pin basted
~Kal & Leia's aprons (meant for last Christmas) done
~Quilt Doodles BOM done for Feb.
~Growth Chart panel sandwiched/pin basted
~Some machine quilting on the Bow Ties
~First Dear Jane block done (couldn't resist--I had to play)
~More hexies. Lots and lots of hexies. I lost count.

  Had a lot of thrift shop time in for Next to Normal. It's not a "sewn" show; most of it's costuming is modern day stuff. And, of course, rehearsal Mon.- Thursday for the college show eats up a ton of life. Not complaining though. After a 6 year dry spell to be back onstage twice in one season is cool. And doing a show with Jacie is really fun.

 Do you want to see the aprons?

 Both fabrics are by M'Liss Rae Hawley, whom I had the pleasure of meeting last November when I bought these fabrics. What a delightful, charming lady! She was shopping at my favorite Hancock's when I was there with Brian, P & J,  Ashley & Patrick and the kidlets just after Thanksgiving. What a surprise it was to be perusing a row of her fabrics and see the beautiful face of the lady on the store signage smiling at me in person! We chatted about our families, her sweet puppies, and Chick-Fil-A (I was wearing a CFA sweatshirt) and then she indulged me as I introduced my brood. She was so gracious and poised. Oh, and I love her fabrics, too!

 Okay, DaGMT 2015--- I will do better for you. And, with God's Blessing, I will be finishing stuff that I put together THIS year because my list for this year will be done by September. Or Christmas. Maybe.


Friday, February 14, 2014

DaGMT 1/2 way~

So...halfway through the month. Not doing well on the finishes.
I'm getting my sewing time in, for the most part, but I'm working on different stuff than the quilts.
Days that grandbabies come to cuddle are not conducive to scheduled sewing. But I welcome them. Also, the community college decided it would do a show this spring (Halleluia! A paycheck!) The good news is-- Jacie was cast in the play! The weird news is-- I was also cast in the play! I'm really just a fill-in for an actor that dropped out on the first day of rehearsals. I love it but it really cuts into sewing time.
My BOM for Quilt Doodles for February : a cute cabin! The quilt is somewhat based on 2 1/2" squares, and I have a plethora of them already cut, so I changed the block a little to make the whole thing out of squares, even though a few pieces were designed with rectangles. No disrespect meant to Designer Cindy~ it's just what I had ready to go! I like where this quilt top is going. :)
 One thing I leaned from this block is I have a deplorable selection of black and brown scraps. And I am determined not to buy anything for this top. Not because I can't; just to see if I can.

                                     And...during Grandbaby days, Kal-El picked up his quilt!

This is by far my favorite tidbit this month:
I decided a few years ago I would someday make a "Dear Jane". I knew I would use a collection to help make fabric selection easier and I knew the cost would keep it a distant project.  When I saw the fabric line from "Downtown Abbey" I thought I had found the collection for my Jane. I told B about it, with the idea that I could start collecting them, one at a time, until I had them all. He gave me some 'found money' and said to get them now. I really don't deserve this man. Unfortunately, all the bundles were out of stock where I wanted to order them from. So I asked to be notified when they were re-stocked. A few weeks went by and in the meantime I found and loved the Jefferson County line from Windham. The colors stole Jane's heart. So, after a couple of days to think about it, early one morning I went online and ordered my Jane fabrics (Missouri Star) and the book (Amazon). To say I was excited, well, I think the only delivery I was more excited about in the last year was Pippin's. I have started tracing the patterns--you can see tabs where I've marked certain blocks already-- and even added a few fabrics from the stash to the "Jane Basket" where I will keep her neat and separate from the other chaos. I don't know how long it will take but I am so happy to be doing this!

Side note--- after I ordered the fabrics that morning, I signed into my email account and, of course, had emails telling me ALL the collections I wanted from Downton Abbey were back in stock. I feel a little guilt. I must start saving those pennies again and get at least one of them! Because...   yes.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Day3~ DaGMT Math

Easy math for Monday~  Sitting in the car and waiting for 2(1/2 hour music lessons) - 1(run into grocery for peppers and onions) = 16 hexies in about 40 minutes. Oh, and watching ducks swim in the rain.

Monday, February 3, 2014

The First February Finish~

   I'll start off by going on the record saying I know how fortunate I am that I have the time to dedicate to the sewing I do. My work is part time and my kids are of the age that I don't have to hover over them while they're doing schoolwork. Or supposed to be doing schoolwork. I do have to do that kind of hovering. But my twenty minutes a day pledge can easily become hours, especially if a crippling snowstorm closes down the area or a giant sporting event is taking place, as both did this weekend. I decided to start with the tasks I like least to try to make progress; saving the fun for last, so to speak. So I grabbed my grandson's quilt that has been sandwiched for over a month and went for it.

  I guess Beth's isn't the only tractor quilt with a story. Here's mine: simply put, my grandson, Kal-El, adores tractors. Kal's family lives in a cute little house surrounded by a cornfield. It's not theirs. But they're rural dwellers and farms are more familiar to him than Nani's 'big city' life. I didn't make him a quilt when he was born because my daughter asked for cloth diapers instead. When he was a little bigger, I made him one with a robot theme because he seemed to like them. Last spring, when we found out #3 was coming, I told him, "Kal, you're getting so big, it's time for a new quilt. Let's go to the fabric store and you can pick out what you like." Kal got very quiet, looked down and shook his head. I asked him "Wouldn't you like a new, bigger blanket?". Again he said no.  I said okay, but tell me when you want one. He said, "Never! I like my robots!" I realized what he was thinking and after mommy and I reassured him he could keep his robots and have a new one too he got excited about choosing fabric! We went to JoAnn's and I sent him off with Philip, with instructions that Philip was merely to watch him, help him carry bolts and NOT try to talk him into Star Wars. Kal's choice alone. It was only minutes later that Kal came around the corner to us, carrying a big bolt of John Deere flannel by himself, and wearing the biggest grin a little boy could have.  We added the pre-printed broadcloth panels and I pulled the solids from my stash.  I covered one of the printed 'blocks' with a yellow piece I appliqued his name on. The original flannel he chose is actually the back. It was my plan to have it finished before Pippin came, but when that deadline passed I set my sights on his 4th birthday (Dec. 21) or, if I didn't make that then Christmas (because 4 more days would really change everything). Right. Well, Kal's Tractors became #1 for DaGMT. I got it half quilted Friday while I was still stuck in snow, but that doesn't count because it wasn't February yet. I finished the other half Saturday afternoon in about two hours.  Yesterday, (Sunday) I stopped at Hancock after church to pick up a 1/2 yard of a different JD print to make the binding. What should have taken 10 minutes became an hour and a half because their power went out and killed the registers. I already had the fabric cut (2 pieces actually, since I grabbed a piece for Pippin's binding, too, since his quilt is on the list) so I waited with 50 other people 'til they got working again. A stop at Taco Bell for the two teens that had to wait in the car (sorry, guys) and it was 3:00 before we got home. After an episode of "Cutthroat Kitchen" and a chat with hubby I finally headed for the sewing room. My plan was to have the binding made and machine stitched to the front by kickoff so I could hand stitch the back down throughout the Super Bowl. At 4:30 I started cutting strips. I plopped into my hand-sewing chair in the living room just seconds after kickoff at 6:30. Except for one break to stretch, one to eat a couple of crackers and ALL of Bruno Mars performance (I mean---WHOA!) I didn't stop until it was done. We Skyped with the kids for a bit during the game and DH showed Kal what I was working on~ "MY QUILT! MY QUILT!"

Happy GettingSoBigYou'reABigBrotherAgainBirthdayChristmas!, Buddy. Nani loves you.

Yes, there is a matching pillowcase. I made that when I finished the top, forgetting about the need to save some for binding. *smh*

Thursday, January 30, 2014

February means DaGMT

  While I was doing my after Christmas straightening, I took notes as I organized and actually made a chart of what I had started, what I had waiting, what I had bought certain fabrics for.

            Don't worry if you can't read it. Sometimes I don't even know what I'm talking about.

   All~ well, a lot~ of the plans that were jumbled in my head were finally on paper with the hope that crossing them off who be so much fun I might actually get them done. Along comes February to help. What's so special about February? It's time for Quilting Hottie Haven's annual Drop and Give Me Twenty!

This is a great opportunity to work on and knock out some finishes for those UFOs, WIPs,
Git Er Dones that are hanging around and begging to be done. Twenty minutes (at least) a day, every day-- it is amazing how much you can accomplish! Sign up, make a pledge and post your progress and you could win some great prizes.
Without further ado, here is my edited and pasted promise, pledge, plea~
"I, meg, (owner of too many UFOs and/or more fabric than I can hope to use up in my lifetime) am joining Quilting Hottie Haven's third annual DaGMT event, and pledge to quilt for at least 20 minutes, (usually first thing in the morning before I drag the children kicking and screaming from their beds to the homeschool table), every day of the month of February, 2014. In doing so I hope to (make way for more fabric purchases, give everyone in my family a quilt for Christmas and ensure my children don't someday have to sort through 89 UFOs and then sell them for $5 each at a yard sale) and I think Beth Helfter is brilliant for coming up with this concept and inspiring me to join. Again."

Join in, won't you?

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Hey! I actually finished something~

   Don't faint~~ it's not a costume job either. I have to finish those or actors are naked. No, I did some re-arranging and re-ordering and when I looked at my nice, clean area, I had to sit and sew something. So, on the top of the pile were these panels from a pattern I tested last spring:

   I had added the borders on a whim a few months ago and last week I found a curtain panel in a thrift shop that exactly matched my sofa slip cover that I thought would make a good back for them.
 I used the finished edges of the curtain (coughbecauseI'mlazycough) to save time and made an envelope style back. Some may say that they are passe' for now because Christmas is over but I say "nope".  Since Mother Nature just dropped 10" of snow on my house, which usually gets less than a few per winter, I say snowmen can stay on the sofa as long as they want. Well, they can stay out. They don't stay on the sofa, exactly, because as soon as I place them in the corners, AbbyBeagle comes along and flips them off. Apparently she can't get her hiney into the corners as she likes when they're there. She'll have to get over it. I like my snowmen!


Thursday, January 16, 2014

*giggle* BOM *giggle* Time!

I'm not sure why the quilter's acronym "BOM" makes me giggle but it does. Why, after all these years, do I still have to stop and think about what it means? Maybe there was something else it meant back in my Navy days that has left my cognitive memory but there's still a reaction. I don't know, but I do know the only BOM I have ever participated in was "Bottled Rainbows" and while the quilt is sandwiched and pinned it is not yet finished. That's not really a surprise--- I really don't enjoy the quilting part of quilting. I like piecework. Which is why, when I did the after Christmas clean up, I found I have about 8 tops and three sandwiches waiting to be finished. That's another post. Today's is for a new BOM I decided to join. It's a mystery, don't know what it's going to be when it's done but it caught me because it is based on 2 1/2" squares. I adore 2 1/2" squares. They are my favorite size and shape to play with, just slightly ahead of the 1 1/4" hexies I've been working on for three years or so, off and on. Any scrap I can get a 2 1/2" square out of, I do. And this is my storage for them:

This jar held a dozen of the most delicious, hand-made ice cream cones from a famous ice creamery named "Doumar's". It's just a few miles down the road in Norfolk, VA. and it's founder claims to be the one who invented ice cream cones at the St. Louis Exposition  in 1904. I think several people make the claim, I don't really care who did it first, I'm just grateful for the ice cream cone. But an added bonus of storing the squares in the jar is they all smell heavenly when I sift through 'em. But, anyway---the BOM. Cindy Staub of Quilt Doodle Designs is offering this sweet winter themed mystery BOM and I'm in. The first block is up and I am delighted that it is seven sweet snowmen. Half my Christmas decorations are snowmen themed so I know this will be a winner. Here's my January block; looking forward to see what February brings!

I used a blender from M'Liss Rae Hawley for the blue and some snowflake white-on-white I had in stash~

A scrap of orange for the noses and I opted for a flat-backed craft button for the eyes. I positioned the eyes and noses in a wonky way because I like any opportunity to use the word 'wonky'.
Bonus--- I got to use one of DH's brilliant Christmas gifts to fuse the noses in place! He is such a smart man to know exactly how to read my Christmas wish list. I asked for one thing from the list-- he bought them all plus some. Yes. I'm keeping him.