Archive for July, 2006


I had a lot of comments on Mom’s Honeybee so I thought I would post the book I found the pattern in. I bought my copy at Joann’s but it’s been a while and I had a hard time locating it online but finally found it on the site Alibris. I did look and couldn’t find it at the usual sites – Amazon, B&N, or even the Leisure Arts or Oxmoor site.

Great American Quilts Book Nine

What I’m reading

I finished Twisted by Jonathan Kellerman a couple weeks ago. He’s another one of my favorite authors and while I like his books that feature Alex Delaware better than the ones featuring Petra Connor I did enjoy this book.

I also just read Break No Bones by Kathy Reichs. It’s probably not the best one she’s written but I still enjoyed it. I’ve watched a couple episodes of the TV show Bones since I last read one of these and it’s funny, the actress from the show was how I pictured the main character while I was reading this book. Has anyone else who reads these books seen the TV show?

Someone commented a while back about not enjoying one of the books I’d blogged about. It was one in a series and probably not the best one at that. I really enjoy reading about the same characters so I frequently find myself reading what I consider series books. It’s rare that I think they are all great and it’s not unusual for a series to get stale – for example, Patricia Cornwell, James Patterson, and even Tom Clancy. When that happens I stop buying every book they write and pick and choose more carefully which ones I’ll read. Even with that I think I’m more tolerant of a mediocre book if it has characters that I like in it.


Friday I went to my guild meeting where Sally Collins was the guest lecturer. Her work is quite impressive and she went out of her way to not be judgmental but she really preaches perfection in quilting. Not something I aspire to. While I’m not an advocate of sloppy work I don’t get overly concerned about imperfections. I think that I make pretty nice quilts and as long as I’m learning new techniques and improving as I go along I’m happy.

One of the things that I really enjoy about the guild are the lectures from nationally know quilters. I haven’t taken any of the classes – they don’t particularly interest me but I love the lectures and seeing all the quilts they bring to show.


I should meander more quilts – this went fast. The colors in the picture are more true than the one I posted this morning. It’s quilted with a maroon thread that blended with the fabric so you see texture not the thread.

Laura’s quilt

Today I’m loading and quilting the top Mom made for Laura (my youngest sister’s daughter) who is heading off to Virginia Tech this fall. I’m just going to do a simple all over meander on it – quick and easy!

The color in the picture is a little off – It’s maroon and 2 shades of orange. The lighter one looks yellow in the picture but it’s orange.

It’s a McCall’s pattern but I couldn’t find the magazine with the quilt in it so I worked it up in EQ5.

Stash Quilt blog ring

It looks like the ring is still down.

Luckily, I have bloglines set up but for those that manage to get to this site – check your browser history – that should hold the blog sites you typically visit OR you can go into the comment sections on your own blog . By clicking on the links you can travel to the profile of the person commenting and from there to their blog. Just a couple ways to get to your favorite blogs even with the ring down.

Mom’s Honeybee Quilt

I finished quilting Mom’s top today and got it unloaded and trimmed. It’s all ready to ship back to her but I’ll wait until I quilt the top she made for my niece and send them both back together.

Books to Read (or not)

I finished reading Saving Fish from Drowning by Amy Tan. I have to repost about this book because when I posted initially I was enjoying the book.

Now having read the entire book, I would not recommend it. I found the beginning different but interesting, the middle was horrible – very difficult to get through, and the end was OK.

I did continue to struggle through the book because I wanted to see what was going to happen to the characters.

Heading home

My brother is back from his vacation and I’m heading home tomorrow.

It’s about a 10 hour drive and I will be driving PAST Mary Jo’s in Gastonia WITHOUT stopping. How’s that for dedication to stashbusting?

Name Change

My oldest son Chris was 6 when Keith and I got married and for years he talked about changing his name to Johnson. He emailed me yesterday that it’s done – he is now Chris Johnson. He decided to go ahead and make the change official before his wedding in October and that will certainly make it easier on Becky – now she’ll just change her name once.

I worried some that my Adam (my younger son) would be upset but he says he doesn’t mind. He doesn’t feel any need to change his name but said if he did he wouldn’t change it to Johnson. He’d choose McLaughlin – my maiden name. Being born on the day after St. Patrick’s day, he has a strong affection for his Irish roots.

Both boys still see their father but have a wonderful relationship with Keith and in Adam’s words feel he is their *real dad*.

I remembered

Couldn’t sleep last night and lying in bed I finally remembered the other book I just finished – Cold Moon by Jeffery Deaver. Glad to know I’m not the only one who doesn’t remember.

Laurie commented she likes the Elm Creek books by Jennifer Chiaverini and Janet Evanovich. I’ve missed a couple of the Elm Creek series but like both of these authors.

Cynthia’s reading Deadly Kisses by Brenda Joyce – a good romance is my book of choice for a bubble bath. I’d read other ones by Joyce but haven’t read this one so I’ll have to put it on my list.

Eileen’s book group is reading Secret Lives of Bees next and she also reads Nora Roberts, Janet Evanovitch, and James Patterson. I read a lot of Patterson too and usually like his books.

Laurie also asked how I was doing on my weight loss. I haven’t been back to Weight Watchers for 4 weeks because I’ve been out of town on my regular meeting day. According to my scales my weight loss is about 30 lbs but I haven’t lost any in a couple weeks. Too much traveling and I haven’t been as strict. I’m OK with that and I could easily live with my weight now but it would be nice to lose a few more pounds so maybe when things settle back down I’ll start to lose again.

I am going for another hike this morning so even with all the travel I’m keeping up with my walking/hiking.

A visit to the bookstore

It’s been two weeks – longer than I usually go without my B&N fix so this afternoon I spent a couple hours browsing through books and magazines. I bought the new Quilter’s Newsletter special edition 9-patch Quilts and a handful of books.

I’ve been reading a couple older Nora Roberts books – you know the kind – no thought involved just a quick mindless read. I’m also about halfway through Saving Fish from Drowning by Amy Tan. I enjoy her books and while this one is somewhat different I’m really liking it too.

I finished Prior Bad Acts by Tami Hoag last week. I’d mentioned in a previous post that I was reading it and got a kick out of it being set in Minneapolis.

I know I finished something else last week but I can’t remember what it was. Does anyone else read so much that they have trouble remembering which books they just finished? It’s not that I wouldn’t remember the story if I had the book in my hand – I just can’t remember what book I was reading. Very sad.

More progress

Mom finished another top today

I pieced a quick strippie quilt to donate yesterday so now I’ve finished a couple tops since I’ve been here at Mom’s.

While I was out hiking 10 miles today, Mom finished piecing this top. Cute isn’t it? It’s from the book Growing up with Quilts.

Tonight I’m helping her go through her magazines and ripping out the patterns she wants to keep. I found that having mine in a binder makes them more usable and I don’t have keep the rest of the magazines.

Stay at home retreat

Mom’s Quilt
Today, Mom and I particpated in a stay at home retreat on my Stashbuster list.

I finished piecing a top – a UFO. I’d wanted to make some windmill blocks and this was intended to be a quick donation quilt. It sat around for a couple years so it certainly wasn’t quick. It’s plain looking but it WILL look cuter when it’s quilted! I hope.

Mom was working on a quilt for my niece. It’s based on a McCall’s pattern but I couldn’t find the magazine so I drafted it in EQ5. We’d picked out the fabric when I was here last week and I cut it out for her then too. It’s looking better than my UFO.

Home for a day

I flew home from Mom’s last night and am driving back with Chesty tomorrow. My brother is going to be out of town all next week and with Mom not feeling well lately I wanted her to have someone around if she needed something.

I’ve been running around today getting the car serviced and Chesty groomed so we (Chesty and I) can head out in the morning. Keith was in California this week while I was in Virginia and he won’t get back before I leave. It will be another week before I see him.

I’m packing a couple projects to work on while I’m there. Fabric for one of my super simple strippies and a UFO that just needs assembly. I’m really not crazy about this UFO but I’ve done too much work on it not to finish and donate it.

The Wedding Quilt

I’m visiting my Mom in Virginia and we’ve been working on Chris’ wedding quilt between going to her doctor’s appointments. We finished the top tonight but I’m not going to post a picture because Chris reads my blog!

Here’s a picture of Mom pinning the blocks for me to sew.

Stashbuster’s update

I finally finished the binding on UFO #10 tonight – the 2nd Braid quilt I’d intended to finish last weekend when I left my binding kit at home.

The picture shows both Braid quilts – one will be donated to the Ronald McDonald House through my guild and the other one will go to Project Linus.

In addition to the UFO challenge on the stashbuster list I’m also tracking my stash yardage used for the 100 Yard Dash from Stash. I’m only up to 42 yards of stash at this point but that’s mainly because the quilt has to be finished to count the yardage. I have a few tops that are waiting for quilting that will count as soon as I get them quilted and bound.


I debated whether or not to subscribe to Bloglines but after reading a couple posts about it I decided to go ahead and set it up.

It took two days but I added ALL the members of Stash Quilts. Rather than just subscribing to part of the group, the time I save not going to sites that don’t have updated posts can be spent reading the newer blogs.

So while 36 blogs seems like a lot I think I’ll actually spend less time catching up with everyone.

On a side note – Just for fun I did try out that What Flower are you? site that Norma posted but I came up as a Shrinking Violet!! Well – OK it just said Violet (I added the shrinking part) but here’s the blurb:

“You have a shy personality. You tend to hesitate before trying new things or meeting new people. But once people get to know you, you open up and show the world what you are really all about.”

Just because I’m anti social and love to read doesn’t mean I’m a shrinking Violet! Anyway, try it yourself – it was kind of fun.

Progress on the Honeybee

Today’s a better day and I’m making good progress on Mom’s Honeybee. I had comments asking how I was going to quilt it so I thought I’d post a couple pictures.

In the large squares I’m doing a modified designs with lines pattern. Most of the fabrics are too busy to mark anything so I just chalk the registration lines and then quilt the feathers freehand.

The second picture is one of the leaves I decided on after ripping out the sashing quilting yesterday. They look much better.

Just my luck

I’m finally going to be home a few days and my plan was to start to quilting Mom’s Honeybee top. By the time I made all the phone calls, emails, and faxing that I needed to it was already afternoon – but that’s OK because Keith has a dinner tonight so I still had lots of time to quilt.

Things started off pretty good and considering I hadn’t done any free motion quilting in a few weeks I was pretty happy with the top two borders. Unfortunately I didn’t like the quilting in the sashing and although I rarely rip quilting out – I decided I had to rip and try something else. So most of my quilting afternoon was spent ripping out rather than making progress on this quilt.

I did quilt a couple more hours after dinner but now I’m going to call it a night. I’m reading a pretty good book that believe it or not is set in Minneapolis. It’s Tami Hoag’s new mystery Prior Bad Acts. I’ve a bunch of her books but for the life of me can’t remember where the other ones take place. I always like reading a book that is set in a city I know. It just adds something to be able to actually picture the setting that’s being described.