Archive for February, 2008

A little quilting

Today we looked at a couple townhouses so I didn’t get much quilting done but I did make a start on Nann’s quilt. I’ll finish it in the next couple days in between working on some other things including trying to get the rest of my tax stuff ready to send off to my BIL.

My stashbusting report is pretty lame this week. With the trip to Georgia, the only thing I finished was the RWB HeartStrings quilt and I only used 3/4 of a yard of my stash to make the backing large enough.

I bought 3 yards of fabric – I decided I needed some kiddie prints for making a few quick donation quilts.

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Heading home

The closing went well and now Chris and Becky own my house. It’s odd because I haven’t been here in a year but have so many memories of our time here.

I fly home tomorrow and on Sunday, Keith and I are looking at a couple townhouses. We’ve been watching ones that come up for sale in a particular community downtown and if we find the right one, we’ll move earlier than planned.

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A quiet day

Chris and Becky worked today so I spent most of it reading quietly. Chris got home in the early afternoon so I talked him into taking me to the local quilt shop – Tiny Stitches. I just happened to see Melinda there and had a chance to catch up a little with what was going on with the East Cobb Quilt Guild.

By the way, the ECQG is hosting Bonnie in a couple weeks – too bad that our visits didn’t coincide!

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Wondering where I am?

Usually I post a message that says I’m leaving but I guess I missed it this time (although I did mention an upcoming trip to GA).

I’m in Marietta visiting the boys and my DIL and I’ll sign the closing papers tomorrow for the Marietta house. It’s rather strange to be a guest in my own house and it will be even stranger tomorrow when the kids will actually own it. They’ve lived here a year and have kept the house looking really nice. They’ve spent more time *decorating* than I did in the almost 5 years we were here.

Travel time means lots of reading time…check out my bookshelf to see what I’ve been reading on my Kindle.

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More Beanies and UFO #11

How fun is this? After seeing a donation quilt I had attached a stuffed animal to (from the Pajama Quilter DVD), Norece and her Mom wrote and offered to send me more beanies from TN. Between these and others I received from Dawn and Fran, I’ll have plenty to add to donation quilts for at least a couple years!

Here’s the finished HeartStrings quilt – it’s been bound, labeled, washed, and is packed to send off to Fran who is collecting quilts for a group of soldiers returning from Iraq. This top was pieced by Sue Frank from blocks donated to the HeartStrings Quilt Project. Since it was here waiting for me to finish it at the beginning of the year, it does count as a completed UFO. I’m glad to have one more done!

I know I show lots of HeartString quilts on my blog but I can’t tell you how much I love being a part of this group that is making and donating quilts to so many individuals in need, charitable organizations, and those injured or serving in our military.

Stashbusting report and other progress

While I’m making progress quilting donated tops for HeartStrings, I don’t seem to be using any of my stash this week. I did finish quilting 3 tops but other than a couple postcards no stash was used. Luckily, I didn’t add any this week either.

Haven’t done any piecing in a week or two and I’m missing it. I’ve still got blocks on the design wall to be assembled, a quick strippie cut out and ready to be pieced, and too many projects in my head to count.

By the way, I’m loving my Kindle Reader more every day. I’ve got several books waiting to be read but instead of purchasing them ahead of time like I normally do, I’ve just downloaded the sample – that way I don’t pay until I’m ready to read it but I don’t forget that it’s one I want to read.

Last night in bed, I finished one book, read the sample download for a new book and within a minute or less had the rest of the book downloaded and I was able to continue reading it. There’s nothing like immediate gratification!

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Another top quilted

Working my way through my list, the postcard finished last night, the quilting on this small top by Nancy in CT and her group finished today. I used the pantograph Popcorn – one of my favorites. It’s quick and easy and looks good on just about everything. If you click the photo to enlarge it, you should be able to get a better look at the quilting.

The last postcards for Valentine’s Day

I learned a lesson or two on this first card… one being to make sure I have enough beads. I didn’t have enough of the red ones to go all the way around but found one that looked similar. Since it’s on the (L) side of the key I don’t think its too obvious (and even if it was, I’m not taking it out!).

The second one is a simple one I made tonight. I must be a little brain dead because I felt it was too plain but couldn’t think of what else I could do. Rather than risk *ruining* it – I decided to just stop and consider it done.

I think my favorite one of the five I made was the one Deb and I sent to Mom.

I got the postcard Deb sent me in the mail yesterday – it’s very cute!

My *to do* list

Thanks for the compliments on my quilting on the RWB top. I appreciate you all taking the time to write and reassure me that it looks OK.

I’m heading to GA next Wednesday to close on our Marietta house. Chris and Becky’s loan came through and they’re going to buy it from us with a little help. I’ll get to see both of them and Adam so I’m excited.

In the meantime, I’d like to accomplish the following before leaving.

  • Finish the quilting on the Blue/Yellow string top on the machine (pieced by Nancy in CT and her group).
  • Put the binding on the RWB and one of the coins quilts so I can work on stitching them down by hand.
  • Load and quilt the top sent to me by Nann for quilting.
  • Make one more Valentine postcard.

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It’s never as bad as I think it’s going to be

I’ve finished with the quilting the RWB HeartStrings top and while I’m not really happy with it, it’s not as bad as I thought. By the time it’s washed and dried I think it will look fine.

I neglected to actually measure the backing provided and managed to run short. Thanks to a post on MQResource , I was able to piece the backing with the quilt still on the longarm. Let me tell you THAT was a big help.

Moving on to other quilts

I’m done working on the HeartStrings quilts for Project Linus – here’s a stack of 7 quilts that I finished up all washed and ready to donate. Included are tops that were given to me to quilt by Mom, Barbara in FL, and Deb in AZ as well as a couple of mine.

I loaded and started quilting another HeartStrings top pieced by Sue. I had intended to use a pantograph – Ebb and Flow, but I decided I didn’t want to quilt across the gold stars with the dark thread. However, I still wanted an allover wavy line kind of quilting like Dwirling . I’m not sure I’m thrilled with it since I’m going up around the stars and I had more in mind just a side to side motion but I think it will look fine when it’s done.

I’m not done yet Deb!

I’m still working on the beaded edging – it’s not very even but I like it anyway. For some odd reason I left too much space between *to* and *me* so I threw a heart in there rather than taking it out (again).

Lots of Pink

This top was pieced by Barbara in FL and sent to me to quilt and donate as a HeartStrings quilt. It will go with the other ones I’ve been working on this month to Project Linus just in time for their February 16th Make a Blanket day.

This next one was pieced by Nancy in CT and her group – it will be returned to them along with several others they sent for binding and donating. I used the Double Rose pantograph by Norma Sharp on both these quilts and it suits them well.

Some finishes but no photos

I finished quilting the 1st of 7 tops sent by Nancy in CT for quilting. I’ll send these back for her group to bind and donate. I finished binding and labeling a pink HeartStrings top donated by Barbara in FL, and I labeled the panel quilt I practiced my dwirling on. You remember me saying I don’t practice on muslin?

I also did a bit of beading around the edge of my Valentine postcard – still more to do.

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Selective re-coloring of photographs.

For those of you that have asked, here’s the link Suzanne shared with me. It’s describes the process in Photoshop Elements but may be applicable in other graphics programs too – who knows?

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Stashbusting report PLUS

Not much to report – I used stash for a binding, some postcards, and some applique circles this week. I cut a strippie quilt from stash too but haven’t put it together yet. No fabric purchases other than the backing I already reported to you.

I’ve been reading about Patsy Thompson’s quilting DVD’s from Helen and after taking a look at her webpage I subscribed to her blog. Look at this blog entry 0n her new DVD. I really like some of these designs – maybe this DVD will have to go on my wish list too.

I had written something negative here but I decided to delete it – I have to remind myself that the positives of belonging to this online community outweigh the negatives. For example, I’ve been admiring the scrapbook pages and work with photos that Suzanne has been sharing on her blog and after commenting, she shared a link with me – a tutorial for selectively re-coloring part of a photograph.

The Super Bowl is over, I’m going to watch House and then finish the beading on my postcard. I did manage to load and start quilting another HeartStrings top this weekend but it won’t be finished until tomorrow.

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A fresh start

You guys were kind but I couldn’t stand it – the first one was just too ugly and I didn’t think I could make it work.
So I started over and this one is ready for me to sew the word beads down. I’ll also bead the edge like I’d started with the first card but without the zig zag.

More on the Kindle

For those of you thinking about buying one of these I want to make sure I give an accurate *review* beyond just saying that I love it.

Keeping in mind that I think it’s wonderful and would buy it again in a MINUTE. There are a few things that I want to mention.

1) Although I can’t really get an accurate photo, you can kind of get an idea from this first one. The background *page* is a light gray rather than white. I keep wanting to adjust it. NOT because it’s difficult to read, but just because it seems like it should be white to me.

The screens on these are NOT back-lit like a computer or PDA. It’s supposed to be easier on the eyes and I read for hours yesterday without any difficulty. BUT, when the light goes down in the room – I have to move closer to a reading lamp – just like I would if I was reading a book. This is also supposed to make the device very readable outside in sunlight too but I haven’t tried that yet.

2) The off button is on the back of the device and when I have mine in the cover it’s inconviently located BUT there’s a suspend mode using two buttons on the front – easy – BUT I was worried about the images being burned into the screen so I wrote Amazon’s support and asked . I was told with this technology you don’t have to worry about that and I can leave the device safely in suspend mode for long periods of time. (For me, that’s on and off during the day when I pick up and put down the book).

3) The page turning buttons are very convenient and easy to use, located on both sides but I’m still adjusting to NOT turning the page when I don’t intend to. A couple times I’ve lost my place and had to go back to my last bookmarked spot and page forward a few pages. I’m sure this is something I’ll get more used to as I go along.

As I said, I love, love, LOVE, mine and would buy it again in a minute. If you’re considering purchasing one, please read all the info on the Amazon site. It’s pricy and I would hate for someone to buy one on my recommendation and hate it.

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Valentine postcards

Remember the mess on my sewing table a couple weeks ago? I put it all away to work on HeartStrings quilts but seeing Deb’s postcards tonight I decided it was time to pull it out again.

Do you think the card on the left is enough to guilt Adam (my youngest) into calling or emailing more frequently? The “Loves me/Loves me not” fabric was a gift from Pam. You’ll have to click on the photo to enlarge it enough to see it clearly.

I really like how the first two came out but am not happy with #3. I don’t know if I can think of anything to make it better or if I should just start over. I do like how the beading is looking on the edge but I probably shouldn’t have zig zagged it. I think I’m going to have to scrap it and start over.

Reading glasses

My eyes are at the point that I sometimes need reading glasses for fine or close work and it drives me crazy to have to go searching for them. (I’ve been wearing them for a while when I read for long periods of time to decrease eyestrain so I have several pair around the house.)

Deb showed me a site to order pins that hold reading glasses when I was visiting her and I ordered 3 of them. I don’t like hanging glasses around my neck but I think these will work for me and they’re cute!

By the way, I was reading the Kindle manual last night and found I can put the device in sleep/suspend mode without having to turn if off. I just hit two buttons on the front so I was premature in complaining that the on/off button was inconveniently located on the back of the device and difficult to access when it’s in the cover.

I’m loving it more every time I use it. I was reading this morning while I was eating my cereal and I didn’t have my reading glasses so I increased the font size on the device AND I propped it up on a angle against a couple books sitting on the counter and I didn’t even have to hold it. (Does anyone else find it challenging to eat and turn pages at the same time?)

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