I got a late start and Keith had a half day off today … but as luck would have it … I went looking in the closet for a top that I could use the turquoise thread that was already on the machine and this Strippie was perfect! A watery meandering in the focus fabric and some wave like swirls were freehand quilted. #2 of 10 is quilted, trimmed and ready for binding. This one also had a pieced batting and now I can put some turquoise thread on the sewing machine and get the binding on both of them.

Keith took a bike ride while I was finishing up and then we spent some time in the pool. We didn’t go to either pool at Big Canoe because of the crowds but here, we have a 21 unit townhouse community and there’s rarely more than one or two groups. Today we had it mostly to ourselves. My pool boy, even cleared the leaves out!

Go Bolts!

In general I’m against the push FOR sports at any cost during this pandemic and don’t think many of them can be played safely … the “bubble” being used by the NBA and NHL seems to be an exception. I especially think it’s irresponsible for colleges and high schools to move ahead with sports in areas with rising numbers of deaths and hospitalizations.

Having said all that, I am enjoying watching the Tampa Bay Lightning play again and today’s game was a cliff hanger … 5 overtime periods before we won 3-2. The 4 longest game in playoff history.

We mostly just follow Hockey and Football but I’ll be happy for everyone when all sports can safely resume.

After the game when Keith went up to bed I went back into the sewing room. This afternoon, I’d finished organizing the projects I brought back from Georgia and pulled backings for them all so I was ready to start sewing. The only piecing I expect to get done while I’m home is finishing my Rainbow HeartStrings blocks and making a set of 48 HeartStrings blocks for our 365 for Marianne project. Tonight I pulled blues and turquoise strings and scraps and started the last of the Rainbow blocks.

Getting Organized

As you can imagine after being away for 8 weeks, I have some organizing to do. Don’t be shocked but I’m already unpacked and since I did laundry before I left Big Canoe it’s already done too, I’ve sorted through and dealt with all the mail that’s piled up, and I’ve organized this group of tops sent by Sue along with some of the Rainbow HeartStrings blocks for Maine.

There were 8 tops in the box along with fabric for some of the bindings. I’ve pulled backing fabric or donated backs for 6 of them, pulled additional fabric and have cut 7 bindings, and they’re on the shelf waiting for their turn for quilting. The plan is to quilt at least 2 of them during my quilting marathon over the next 4 weeks.

I’ve also made dinner for tonight. This recipe for Waldorf Chicken salad is one of Keith’s favorites now and a good choice for hot summers days!

Now it’s time to go unpack the bin of tops I pieced in Georgia and get them organized. I should be ready to start quilting by tomorrow!

More cornhole!

Chris came with his family last night for dinner and stayed until after lunch today. We enjoyed their visit and Rae loved playing cornhole. Surprisingly, she wanted to play on the “Viking” team every game – I need to send her another Viking Jersey. Finn was pretty tired by the time they left!


I’m itching to play in my scraps … it takes more time to pull fabric and cut but I love scrap quilts. Going back and forth between Florida and Georgia makes it a bit harder. When I’m at home I’ve got to focus on quilting and binding and I’ll end up doing most of my piecing here in Georgia. I have a bunch of precuts and kits here but I’ll need to try to bring scrappy projects too whether it’s one like the triangles I precut with my GO before coming in June or just grabbing a bunch of scraps and tossing them in a bin.

I’ve got some goals set for the time at home …

  • Quilt 10 tops
  • Bind as many of them as I can
  • make a set of 48 HeartStrings blocks
  • finish my Rainbow String blocks (I need blue and turquoise blocks to round out my sets)
  • cut a scrappy project to bring back to GA to piece in September

My summer vacation

It’s easy to get caught up in what we CAN’T do right now … I miss going out to eat, I miss traveling, and I miss seeing my MOM … but looking back over the last 7+ weeks it’s been a pretty good summer.

I’ve been productive in the sewing room and will be taking a bunch of tops home to quilt.

I’ve made about 50 masks for family … we’ll be wearing these for a while!!

And I’ve had time with the boys, a short visit from my brother, lots of hiking and some kayaking!

I’m loving it here in Big Canoe and we’re already looking forward to the next visit … we have a few more days before we leave and Chris and Becky are coming for a quick visit tomorrow.

Hiking and chores

Another day without sewing … good thing I’ve already gotten everything on my list done but I’m still thinking I’ll get a Quick Strippie pieced at some point this week and I might make some more masks too.

I did laundry and chores today … all my guest beds are made up and ready for the next overnight visitors which might not be until we come back in September. We’ll probably see Chris and Becky before we leave but I don’t know if they’ll stay overnight.

We had terrible storms this afternoon … one reason I didn’t sew … but managed to get out for another 3 mile hike after it cleared. Deer, bear, snakes … we never know what we’ll see on our hikes. Today it was a turtle.

And Keith had a herd of deer come up to his window today while he was working. I can’t believe how close they get to the house. We’ve seen the mama and babies in the back several times in the last couple weeks too. We never saw deer at the condo although we would see them when we were driving or hiking … we’re very close to the lake here so I’m assuming our yard is just in the path they take to and from it.

The weekend

We had a nice visit with Adam and the kids this weekend. Yes, that’s me playing cornhole … Keith arranged with Chris to have two boards made … one for the Washington Redskins and one for the Vikings … guess which team is mine?!

And a nice hike this afternoon when they left to go home.

I crocheted a little this afternoon … still don’t think I’m going to get this blanket done before I leave but I am more than 3/4 of the way through it. One more week here in Big Canoe …

This and that

I was back to work today … the framed 16 patch quilt is half way assembled. I set it aside to make some more masks but I’ll try to get it finished up tomorrow. Adam is coming tomorrow evening for a visit and Chris and Becky are coming Sunday. Caleb doesn’t like wearing masks so I decided I’d try to make it more fun, Becky heard a rumor that I’d made a mask for Keith using elastic and wanted to try one she didn’t have to tie, and Chris had found some Smokey the Bear fabric and wanted a couple masks. All done. I decided to use the elastic for Caleb’s too so I added that after I snapped the photo.

I went searching for a pattern using the elastic and found some with the pleated masks but the one I liked best allowed me to use my templates that my sister and her friend developed and the elastic goes around the head not around the ears. I used 22 inches of 1/4 inch “rope” elastic for Becky’s and 20 inches for Caleb’s. I threaded it through the casings, overlapped it 1/2 inch and sewed the ends together. That join can be hidden in the casing on the side of the mask

I got a photo today of our bench being installed at the cemetery. He told me that they’ll do the landscaping around it once it’s not quite so hot – some small bushes and grass. We both love it! Knowing we were going to be cremated, I always expected to be in a drawer somewhere … the bench is way cooler … and I can see my Dad’s grave from it. Not something I could do if I was in a different part of the cemetery. I’m so happy they were willing to work with me to find a spot near Dad.

And finally, another recipe to share. I found this Instant Pot Greek Nacho recipe a couple months ago and have served it several times. It’s one of Keith’s favorites. We had it again for dinner and he loved it.