Tuesday, July 31, 2012


I had several requests for the zucchini bread recipes, so links to the recipes are on my "Recipes" page.  I can't give credit for the recipes, as I collect them from many sources, including many military friends over the years!   Enjoy!

Monday, July 30, 2012


 These are the easy place mats that my quilt group was making last winter.  They are  made with four fat quarters and 5/8 yard of fabric for the backing.  These are made using the "quick turn" method - no binding.  They are quick to complete when you need a gift in a hurry!

I used some built-in specialty stitches on my Pfaff for the quilting.  I stitched using Superior King Tut thread in a variegated pastel colour #937.

I've also been working on my redwork quilt.  I decided to take the easy road and make pieced sashing with nine-patch cornerstones.  I'll get back at it soon.

My BFF is on vacation this week, so we are heading across the border to visit Watertown NY for some shopping and a nice lunch out.  We're bringing both DHs along too!

I'll be adding some recipes that have been requested, later this week.
See what creativity is happening at Judy's blog!

Sunday, July 29, 2012


Used this week  7.75 yards
Used year to date  133.625 yards
Added this week  0 yards
Added year to date  108.875 yards
Net Used 2012  24.75 yards
 I finished my southwest tree of life quilt this week, and then I made a set of quick and easy placemats.  One of my Florida quilt group brought the "non-pattern" placemats to the group and suddenly there were placemats springing up all over.  I haven't taken pictures of the placemats, but the southwest quilt is in my "quilts 2012 page.

The hot, humid weather has been taking its toll.  All the grass in the area is brown, and the farmers' crops are withering!  We have central air conditioning, but it always seems to be several degrees warmer in the top floor where the bedrooms are located.  I'm the type that doesn't sleep well - I love it cool, so with our long spell of hot, humid weather, I'm getting more and more tired!

Of course, when we went shopping yesterday, they had some yellow beans, so I had to buy enough to make bean mustard pickle - more later.  They also had baskets of prune plums, so later today I'll be making some plum jam.  The local peaches from the Niagara region of Ontario are also in season, so there is a basket of peaches on the counter, just calling my name.  Looks like I won't be getting much sewing done today!

A friend gave me half of a large, overgrown zucchini, so I cut out all the seeds, until I hit firm flesh, then made some zucchini bread yesterday.  2 loaves of pineapple zucchini and one of lemon zucchini.  Can't wait to taste them - I like to let quick breads sit a day for the flavours to blend......

Back to quilting - check out Judy's blog to see everyone's results this week.

Monday, July 23, 2012


Today my wall looks like this.....
 I'm trying to figure out a way to put these wonderful blocks, designed by Bobby Socks Quilt Co., into a quilt.  I've made so many redwork quilts in the past, and try to design a different layout for each.  I don't want the quilt to become too big, as I expect it will be a wall hanging, not a bed quilt.  I've been playing with Electric Quilt, but haven't found the right combination of sashings/blocks yet.  I'll have to look through some more books for inspiration!

Check out what others are working on at Judy's new blog here!

Saturday, July 21, 2012


Used this week  6 yards
Used year to date  131.875 yards
Added this week  0 yards
Added year to date  108.875 yards
Net used 2012  23 yards

I finished my Southwest Tree of Life quilt!  I managed to find the 1/16" cord for the mini piping between the final border and the binding.  My only difficulty with this project was running out of the variegated thread that I was using to quilt the final border!  It was an older thread that had been in my collection for quite some time, and I've never seen it since buying it!  Fortunately I found another thread that worked - just a slightly different collection of colours.  I had to hunt for the 8 inch section where I used it, so  I think it works just fine.

 I had fun quilting the black areas with a greeny black thread.  I enjoy free-motion quilting so much that it always surprises me when I hear how many people are afraid to try.....

Friday, July 20, 2012


While browsing through some old craft magazines, I found a pattern for a beaded talisman necklace.

The beads are woven together in groups of three, then joined into a circle.  Then the next row is stitched to the first.  The flap continued on after the first 8 rows were complete, and has an opening for the loop, which is stitched to the front.

I needed a large bead or stone to use as a closure, but after checking through my "stuff" and even looking in a shop, I decided to play with some polymer clay to make the shape I wanted.  I attached the stone to the top of the pouch with a beaded string.

The clay that I used was a light blue and a white pearl colour.

I needed to make a string of beads so that the talisman pouch becomes wearable.  I made some flat beads with leftover polymer clay, and I found some silver bugle beads to help lengthen the strand.  As you can see, I still have some more beading to complete before attaching the strand to the other side of the pouch.  

I'm still a real novice at both beading and polymer clay, but the process is fun, and time consuming, which makes it appealing to me.  I'm not a fan of "quick and easy" projects.

Thursday, July 19, 2012


Every once in a while, I want to do something other than quilt! (I know, this sounds insane, as I love quilting!)  I was looking for some hand work to do while keeping DH company in the evenings, and I thought about the small stash of seed beads that I had collected in the early 70's!
I found a pattern for a beaded pen in a magazine, and decided that I could try to decorate some wooden needle cases that I had in a drawer.  

The first one was done with a bag of assorted colour seed beads.  I only had one type of beading thread, and it was almost impossible to thread through the eye of the beading needle, but I persevered.  When I had it finished, I painted it with clear nail polish to give it shine and glue it to the wood.  I decided to leave the top plain for better gripping when removing.

The second attempt used two colours of beads, and my stitching became more regular.  I decided not to bead the bottom, in case I wanted the needle case to stand on its end.
 My final attempt used a variety of beads, but now that I understood how the beading lined up, I was able to form a design of sorts.  I decided to make a base for this one too, but I think I should have used matching beads!

The beads were stitched using a Peyote stitch - I think!

Sunday, July 15, 2012


Used this week  12.875 yards
Used year to date  125.875 yards
Added this week  0 yards
Added year to date  108.875 yards
Net Used 2012  17 yards

I finished the quilting on my quilt called "Half Log Blues"  yesterday afternoon.  Now if I could only enlist a second tall guy to hold my last 3 large finished projects so they could have their picture taken!

 After my thread/needle/presser foot/tension difficulties, I chose a shiny trilobal polyester thread that is actually varigated light purples and greens, as the best to show up on the blue sections of the quilt top.  From a distance, the cone of thread looks like silvery grey - not my first choice, but my best choice!

Haven't seen Judy's stash report yet, but I'm posting mine!

Friday, July 13, 2012


I was so pleased to finish all the "stitch in the ditch" quilting on my "Half Log Blues" quilt.  I even added the binding and got it sewn to the back by hand.  (I always do this before finishing the quilting - seems backwards but it works for me!)
I finally began doing the "fun" quilting on the half log cabin blocks and had a terrible day!!!!  I changed threads, needles, presser feet, I adjusted the tension, but nothing was working.  I decided to take a break from quilting, as I was going to destroy the area I was working on by so many failed attempts, and my waste basket was full of thread.

I took a day off and made some black currant jam!  DH and his friend were pruning some shrubs for an elderly neighbour, and she remembered how much my DS2 loved black currant jam.  She offered some black currants if DH wanted to pick them!  I managed to make one large and six small jars of lovely black currant jam, using the microwave method.  Tastes wonderful!!!!!

Finally decided to get back to my quilting.  I changed the presser foot one more time (I have 3 to choose from on my Juki), and like magic, everything was working!

Hopefully things will stitch smoothly today as well.  DH is playing golf today, the garden is watered and my chores are done, so I plan to spend the day quilting.  Wish me luck!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


My daylilies are in full bloom, with many more buds to open!

Monday, July 9, 2012


I have two items on the go this Monday.  I finished the appliqued border on the Southwest tree of life quilt.
 I love the look of the wavy border, and had planned to use the same fabric for binding.  Thought it needed something else, so I decided to add some piping between the border and binding.  After auditioning many fabrics, with DH sharing his opinion, I've decided to use this gold-orange-reddish swirl fabric to add a visual break.

 I spent yesterday afternoon, between baking desserts and doing laundry, piecing the backing for my "half log cabin blues" quilt.  The backing is clamped to the table, layered with batting, then the top, ready to be pin basted today.  I miss the large tables that are available when I'm in Florida.  At home, I have my smallish cutting table, and with a larger quilt (this one is 71x83"), I have to get DH to help when I need to reposition it to baste the next section.  I am very careful to check for ripples etc., on the back when I have to move to the next area.  I'm thinking that feathers travelling along the wavy lines might look good - I'll have time to decide while I'm pin-basting!

Check out what other creative quilters are working on at Judy's blog.

Sunday, July 8, 2012


Used this week 6 yards
Used year to date  113 yards
Added this week  0 yards
Added year to date  108.875 yards
Net used 2012   4.125 yards
I'm finally in the black again!!!!!  I finished the Dollhouse X-Block quilt this week - just a small project, but enough to turn the corner.
I made this quilt with 2 pieces of fabric that I bought online a few years ago.  I was disappointed with the colour of the fabric, but knew I'd find a project for it one day.  It is a happy, bright quilt, and all the dollhouse rooms are there, only cut up somewhat like a puzzle.

I hope everyone else has had a good stash week.  Check out the progress at Judy's blog - Patchwork Times.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012


I know this is a special day for all my American friends, and it is special for me too!
Today is my birthday!!!!

I have wonderful memories of the 4th while we were stationed at Tyndall AFB in Panama City FL.  I joined a community concert band while we were there, and we played a concert every 4th.  I can still hear all the wonderful music - love those military marches!

I'm having a quiet day at home today.  My brother and his wife, who headed back to Guilin, China today, sent me a beautiful jade necklace, and DS2 and his wife gave me an Ipod!  Now I have to figure out how to load some music onto it!!!!

DH and I are heading out for dinner tonight - nothing special, but I don't have to cook.  When our boys were small, I always had to bake myself a birthday cake!

I got all the basic quilting finished on the Dolly X-block quilt, and did the hand sewing of the binding last night.  Now I get to add some of the "fun" quilting!!!

Monday, July 2, 2012


I'm starting to get back in the quilting groove again.  Yesterday I pieced a backing for my Dolly X-block quilt.  Hopefully I'll get it pin-basted today.
I also put my applique southwest tree of life on the design wall to audition border fabrics - which must come from my stash.
Here is choice number 1....
I like the rustic wood tones, but I'm not sure that the curved inside edge of the border will look great in this fabric.
 Here is choice number 2.....

This pulls some of the applique colours to the border, and I love the funky swirls.  I think it would look good with the curved inside edge as well.

Maybe by the time I get the other project quilted, I'll be able to make a decision!

Head over to Judy's blog to see what other creative quilters are up to!

Sunday, July 1, 2012


Used this week 0 yards
Used year to date  107 yards
Added this week  0 yards
Added year to date  108.875 yards
Net used 2012    -1.875 yards

I'm trying to get back in the quilting groove, but life has a way of  changing my plans!  I have two quilt tops that require backing and basting to finish, and some redwork blocks that need a design before I can deal with all the other patterns/plans that are bouncing around in my head!!!!!

Check out everyone's  progress at Judy's blog!


DH and I plan to have a quiet day today - he is playing is guitar while I'm catching up on emails etc.  We have ribs to cook for dinner, and I may bake some bread - but maybe tomorrow......

Almost caught up on my laundry - just a load or two to go.....

I did quilt yesterday, if only for a couple of minutes.  When I received my quilts back from the show, I noticed a couple of lines of background quilting that I had missed on one, so, of course I had to fix it!!!

 Now the big decision is whether to find backs for a couple of finished tops, or begin planning the quilt to use the redwork blocks that are waiting....  What to do, what to do......