Archive for August, 2012

On my needles

The Sunny Blanket is growing!


Finishing up

Binding and labeling the Owl Strippie


Love these heart labels.


August’s UFO

With just a day to spare, this little HeartStrings quilt of mine is done.


Quilted with the pantograph Improved Clamshell, I love the texture.


And it has one of my off center 4 patch backings and a heart label. I love how it turned out and know that whoever receives will too.


Here’s a tip

I’m just now realizing that Monday is Labor Day which means a 3 day weekend for me with Keith – very nice after all the travel the last couple weeks. However, I was thinking that surely there should be an app or some way to add holidays automatically on my iPhone/iPad calendar so I did a search and guess what? There is a way to add them and it works! Here’s a link that will give you the option to add them automatically to yours.


No sewing yesterday or today (so far) but I’ve been busy. Genealogy research yesterday getting ready for the trip to Philly including reading up on BillionGraves. The plan is to use their iPhone app to document graves while I’m there. I also got into doing some transcriptions — it’s not like I don’t have a million other things to do but I kind of like looking at headstones and wondering about the people buried there.

Keith’s finally back in town after being gone but he had business dinners last night and tonight so I wandered across the river to get my steps and something to eat. I love eating in the outdoor courtyards around the city.

#8 of 10

I’m pretty sure this is from HeartStrings group blocks sent into Sue and one of the ones I brought home from the August sew-in but I could be wrong. I’ve been trying to label all the tops as they come in the mail with the month and name of the person sending it but this one didn’t have a label.

It’s quilted with what I’m calling a diagonal basketweave. Rhonda had one she did at the last sew-in and I thought it had a neat almost crosshatching effect. Not sure if mine does but it’s nice to try something different.

Ashley’s Log Cabin

I’ve had several comments/questions about Ashley’s log cabin quilt. She’s a beginner quilter and when we were all at my Mom’s for the Mid Atlantic quilt show she was talking about wanting to make a quilt. I think she has made at least one before and she also participated in our family postcard exchange.

I suggested that a log cabin quilt would make a good project and Mom even had the Quilt in a Day book so I could show her the photos. Next we needed a color scheme and since she likes purple, I showed her a couple purple and green quilts I’d recently finished up.



She liked the combination of the purple and green so we went fabric shopping, used Mom’s GO to cut the 2.5 inch strips called for and then she pieced the top. When she asked me if I would quilt it for her, of course I said yes. Now I’ll ship it back to PA for her to bind and she’ll have a lovely quilt. I should probably know how old she is but I’m not completely sure … My guess is 13 give or take a year.


Have you ever wished you had been named something different or that you had a nickname?

I was talking with my Mom about how much I disliked the name Mary growing up and that I wished she’d named me something else. My grandmother (Mary Anne) and great grandmother (Mary Jane) were both named Mary and while it’s nice to be named for someone — Mary is still boring.

Mom told me she should have called me Mollie since that’s what her grandmother (Mary Jane) had been called so I decided that’s the nickname I wanted and she’s been calling me Mollie since my visit earlier this month. So will it totally confuse you all if I start going by Mollie ūüôā

Here’s an interesting list on nicknames and their given names – helpful if you’re doing genealogy research.

By the way, if you think that RaeRae is a silly/strange name … It’s my nickname for the new baby Chris and Becky are expecting in October. Her name will be Reagan Rae Johnson.

August’s UFO

My UFO for this month’s challenge is a HeartStrings top I pieced last year. Quilted with the pantograph Improved Clamshell, it just needs binding now. This is also #7 of 10 tops on the list of goals before the next trip.

I should finish all 10 with time to spare and will work on getting this one and the little Strippie for RaeRae bound. The next trip is to¬†Philadelphia¬†and I’m excited about being able to do some genealogy research there. My father was born in¬†Philadelphia¬†and it’s where his parents settled when they emigrated from Ireland. Keith also has family on his mother’s side that lived there – I’m hoping to find his grandparents’ birth records.

Ashley’s Log Cabin

#6 of 10 tops on the list of goals is this top of my cousin’s daughter Ashley. She’s becoming quite the quilter. Four more tops to quilt before the next trip and they’ll all be HeartStrings tops – including my UFO for this month.

Quilted with wonky flowers from the Pajama Quilter DVD


I didn’t get to sleep until 10Am so after a short nap I decided I’d get out and run some errands ( including a visit to the yarn shop and an early dinner) to get my steps in for the day.


Now I’m ready to walk home and load my cousin’s daughter’s log cabin quilt.

On my needles

Today was another volunteer day at the library but I did knit some when I got home this evening.

The socks (love this yarn/colorway) have been set aside for the next trip and the red cowl is about ready to be bound off.


I’ve cast on the Sunny blanket and am making good progress.


Halfway to the goal

Quilt #5 of 10

This pretty HS top was pieced by Beth and quilted with freehand flowers from the Pajama Quilter DVD. I know you like to see the entire quilt but for now, you’ll just get a snippet of my quilting! I always post a final photo once the quilts are bound but if you just can’t wait to see the top — take a look here on the HeartStrings site— it’s much prettier than this snippet shows.

Breaking through

Yesterday was a volunteer day at the library but with only one patron to help, I had plenty of time to work on my own genealogy project and it was a VERY good day for me. I’ve spent the last year or so working on this family tree and my father’s family was one of the difficult branches. Emigrating from Ireland as young adults, my grandparents grew up in Ireland and those records are harder to get at. I’d found both families on the 1901 and 1911 Irish Census after a LOT of searching and had found additional bits and pieces of information scattered across the internet.

However, I had resisted using one of the fee based Irish sites because I didn’t want to be paying for records that might not be my family. I’d come to a bit of a dead end with the¬†information¬†that was available on the free sites so I decided to dip my toes in and see what I would come up with. Paying ¬†18 Euros I obtained credits to use to viewing records and hit the jackpot!

I found records relating to my grandmother, great and great-great grandparents. ¬†I’m moving ahead again on this branch of the family so I bought some more credits and will be doing a bit more careful searching on this Roots Ireland site.

#4 of 10

This was another top pieced by Sue or her Mom from blocks sent in to HeartStrings. Set in a Straight Furrows setting, I like the diagonal lines in this one.

Quilted with the pantograph Hearts in Bloom

Chesty’s feeling a bit under the weather tonight and curled up for a while under the longarm while I was working.

Moving along – #3 of 10

One more quilted today … ¬†one of the tops Sue or her Mom pieced from blocks sent in to the group. ¬†It’s a little different from our other HeartStrings quilts in that the center string is pieced and the other strings are all lights.

Quilted with freehand Wonky Feathers from the Pajama Quilter DVD

Time to get quilting

Well, the days earlier in the week were a nice break but I need to seriously get moving. I’d finished up all the quilts that had arrived Jan-April – the last ones were bound during the Olympics but they’ve been arriving steadily via the mail and when I added up the ones here and the ones I’d brought home from the sew-in, I’m back up to 22 tops! And those are just the HeartStrings ones waiting for quilting. Two will be shipped off to Peg – a new volunteer for HeartStrings. Just look at the first one she quilted for us.¬†Two are RWB HeartStrings that I will take to Maine in September to finish there and I’ll probably take a few others along too but….

I needed a plan, a goal, something to get me moving. Ten seems like a nice round (achievable) number of tops to get quilted in the next 2 weeks before I travel again and counting the one from yesterday and this HeartStrings top pieced by Tish that I just quilted — I’ve done two of the ten. Wish me luck!

This one is quilted with what I call “blob quilting” but in her DVD, Dawn calls it Fern Ziggle.

Pick three

I dusted off the sewing machine and the longarm today. Plodding along on assembling the Tessellating Pinwheels and I loaded and quilted the Quick Strippie for RaeRae. On these I always pick 3 quilting designs and repeat them in the small, medium, and large strips.

Hearts, Loops, and Swirls


On my needles

I could not resist casting on another pair of socks even though I’m still working on the red cowl and have plans to buy yarn this weekend for a baby blanket. I will get back to quilting …today, I promised myself.


And another

This was the last of 3 pair of socks I’d been working on in the last couple months and I’m anxious to cast on another pair but I think up next will be a baby blanket. I’ve been cruising Ravelry for easy projects and am debating between these two.
Feathered Baby Blanket
Sunny Baby Blanket

Normally I don’t knit blankets because they take too long but I’ve been in the mood to knit so I’ll try something fairly simple.

Today’s sock finish


Pretend you don’t see the messy coffee table – it drives Keith nuts!