Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A Finish for April

Hooray a finished top for April! This is the Gypsy Rose quilt I worked on earlier in the month. The pattern called for a larger outer border but I decided not to put it on (1) because the fabric I bought just wasn't working for me and (2) sometimes I get tired of the small inner border/larger outer border look. I liked the quilt like this so this is what it is. I had enough of the fabric I bought for the outer border to use as a backing (it's a small quilt about 45 X 62) and now it's ready to go to my long-arm quilter Peggy (along with 50-11 other tops...). I think I will take three to her; the others being my Mardi Gras quilt (aka Bonnie Hunter's Orange Crush) and E's flannel quilt (now that it is 80 degrees out...). Melisa helped me pick out border fabric for my Mardi Gras quilt at Sweet Home Quilt Co. so hopefully I will have that done by the end of the month.

PS: Check out Becky's blog for her 150th post giveaway!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Domestic Diva

Well if you remember from earlier in the week, my big plans for the weekend involved cleaning out the attic and that's what happened. We had beautiful weather here in the ATL--80s and sunny--and I spent it cleaning. But it had to be done and we got about 1/2 of the attic cleaned out. It was hot and dusty and icky so the other have will have to wait until S. and I forget how un-fun this half was. A lot of stuff accumulates in an attic over 10 years and I just kept wondering why on earth I kept some of the stuff to begin with. Clutter-busting is very liberating though.

Today was busy at Starbucks, everyone was out and about enjoying the weather and stopping in for coffee. I came home and took a nap, great weather or not I was still tired from yesterday. I also made some homemade kale & mushroom soup and cornbread for dinner and another batch of snickerdoodles as a reward to myself for working so hard this weekend.

As a reward to you for reading this boring post, check out the giveaway at Cornfield Quilter. It's a great giveaway; please let her know I sent you. She also has the most beautiful Double Delight quilt on her 200th post. I love the colors. Wonder if my Double Delight has aged enough to start working on it again LOL!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day 2009!

It's Earth Day! How cool is this Moda Earth Day logo? It reminds me of Catherine's fabulous quilting at Quilt Obsession.

As I posted about earlier this month, my Earth Day pledge this year is to help out my local songbirds by setting up bird feeders. I may look for a nice birdbath too; something other that a large concrete one that is easier to clean. I am trying to talk S. and E. into building some birdhouses too.

Other "earthy" things: a new compost bin for spring and I am seriously considering building some raised beds for a vegetable garden. I just need a few more hours in my day to fit in some gardening. Anyone know where I can find them????

Last year, my pledge was to use "bring your own totes" or go without bags altogether every time I shop. It makes me crazy when I buy one thing and the clerk wants to put it in a plastic bag. I also started using natural wax paper bags for sandwiches and stuff. I buy mine at Whole Foods and they are great! Of course for quilt shops, I have my "Bad Melisa Bag".

What are you doing for Earth Day?

Monday, April 20, 2009

Thimbles and More Spring Cleaning!

I had a busy weekend. Saturday was Silver Thimble Quilt Club and it was so great to see everyone. I haven't seen Most Exalted Leader Pat since January because of her knee surgery. She was busy busy busy working on samples for quilt market. I hadn't seen everyone else since February because I missed Thimbles in March to go to the mountains. I finished up the top for my Gypsy Rose quilt except for the borders (will post a photo soon) and started another project. Becky sewed on bindings. Kristie worked on one of her MANY MANY MANY BOMs from Homestead Hearth. Cindi was making her own "Bad Melisa Bag". Karin was cutting a million zillion pieces for a quilt she is calling "Gretchen's Fault". We were a bunch of busy quilters.

Sunday, I worked my usual shift at SBux then came home and did some more major spring cleaning for about 4 hours, which is why I am too tired to take any photos and post them. My house is way overdue for some major "getting rid of stuff" time. Everything is getting recycled or donated to Goodwill. I plan on tackling the attic this coming weekend. YUCK!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Quilt Bloggers Quilt Festival

Have you seen the fun (and popular!) virtual quilt show set up by Park City Girl? You are supposed to pick your favorite quilt and write a story about it, then add it to the quilt show. It's really hard to pick a favorite quilt because I like them all for different reasons. This is one of my current recent favorites (how's that?) Maybe because it's completely finished???!!! I love Moda fabric and this is a fabulous line called Roman Holiday. I especially love the blue border fabric with the big reddish flowers. This quilt also reminds me of my favorite quilt shop Sweet Home Quilt Co. because I found the fabric there and then had to find a project for it.

So without further ado, click on over to Park City Girl and check out the more than 300 more entries in the Bloggers Quilt Festival and be sure to add your favorite quilt!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Make a Block, Eat a Cookie

How's that for a great way to spend a Thursday night?
Here's my Saturday Sampler block for April. This month's block has really sweet shirting designed by Little Quilts.
I made cookies when I got home from my day job "just because". They are Snickerdoodles from Martha Stewart's book Cookies. I haven't made Snickerdoodles in years and they are just as fun to say and just as good to eat as I remember. I had these warm from the oven with a glass of milk. A good thing!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Stormy Weather and Quilty Reading

Yesterday we had some pretty severe rain and high winds in the metro area, although it wasn't as bad at my house as other places. Combine bad weather with drought-stricken trees and this happens:
Huge trees get uprooted and fall on houses and powerlines and across roads (photo credit: ajc.com). I worked at Starbucks last night and it was crazy packed. The store had power but most of the surrounding neighborhoods did not so everyone came to camp out with their laptops. I imagine lots of people didn't know what to do without all the electronic "necessities" of life. I stopped by on my way home from the day job today and it was still crazy packed because a lot of people are still without electricity. At least most of the traffic lights are working now; the only thing worse than Atlanta drivers in the rain, is Atlanta drivers in the rain without working traffic signals.
OK I can't think of a segue so next topic:
I read the latest Elm Creek Quilts book. It was OK, a quick read, better than the last one (Quilter's Kitchen, which was more recipe book than story), but in my opinion, not as good as some of the earlier ones. I'm thinking maybe the story line has played out.
New quilt magazines arrived at my house a couple of weeks ago. I usually look through them a couple of times before tearing out projects to put into binders. I absolutely LOVE this quilt on the cover of June's American Patchwork & Quilting .
I think this is a "must do" at some point. I am sure I have enough scraps/stash to make it (probably two).
And from McCall's Quilting June issue this most fabulous quilt, all made from various Moda lines (I think I probably have a lot of these fabrics). Add this one to the must do binder also.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Someone please call Alfred Hitchcock

I am getting an early start on my Earth Day pledge this year. After reading an alarming article about the loss of songbirds in the US, I decided to get some bird feeders and help my neighborhood birds (what's your pledge?). It took a couple of days, but word has gotten out among the local birds and the birds are happily feasting at the bird feeder. I don't know a lot of bird species but so far I have seen: chickadees, brown thrashers, mourning doves, cardinals, blue jays, tufted titmice, Baltimore orioles, squirrels (not birds but happy to eat fallen seed), and a bird I have never seen in person (bird?) before.... a goldfinch (excuse the poor photo through window that has yet to receive spring cleaning). Well it started out with one goldfinch..
and then I saw two.... cool, I have never seen goldfinches before and now there are two...
well a week later.....
there were FIVE at the feeder today and I swear they were munching for over an hour. Where did all these goldfinch come from? I've never seen them around before. Now that just kinda reminds me of Alfred Hitchcock.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter!

Hope everyone had a happy Easter and Passover. Spring is just flying by isn't it? Similar to last year, I worked at Starbucks all morning and we did not have the usual Easter dinner. Instead of Easter ham, S. and I had Easter SHRIMP! I went to Whole Foods after work today (I am so happy they were open because we had NO food in the house) and hey the wild-caught shrimp was on sale so that's what I bought. Add some salad and potatoes and call it dinner.

I did get some sewing in yesterday. I set up my featherweight in the living room (because well my sewing space is a mess and I am in clutter denial). I started a new project with a Gypsy Rose jelly roll and the pattern "Two By Fours" by Teacher's Pet.
Gypsy Rose is a great Moda line in nice spring-y colors. My schedule is light this week so I hope to finish it soon.
Stella, apparently finished with the Saturday paper, took an afternoon nap on the NY Times. She also got a bath courtesy of Morpheus.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Pandora's Box Leads to a New Rule

While my mom was sewing together her applique quilt (thanks for all the nice comments BTW), I worked on "Pandora's Box" from the book Jelly Roll Quilts (does anyone not have this book yet? My mom and her stitching group all have copies now too). This is my third completed top from the book, I have one in progress, and fabric for four more. Have I told you how much I love this book?
I finished the blocks and sewed the top together. I love the colors; they remind me of Martha Stewart's colors. The fabric line is "Twiggy" from Moda. Edgar Poe decided to get in the photo shoot. He snuck behind the quilt and appeared on the other side.
Oh look at cute Edgar Poe! Then he walked back across the quilt and noticed a lump. Well if you have kitties, you know they have to check out any suspicious activity. The suspicious activity's name is Stella.
Attack!!!!! Wait a minute....
Just like there's no crying in baseball, there's no fighting in quilting.... New Rule: There's no fighting in quilting. Excuse me while I end this.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Pie and Applique (my parent's visit part 2)

While me and mom had fun shopping and talking about quilt projects and planning new quilt projects. Dad was busy with a list of projects and repairs on my house (it was only 7 items!). My dad can fix just about anything, which is great because my house needed some help. My dad's favorite dessert is chocolate pie so here is his "payment" (one homemade chocolate pie with homemade crust too).

For all the work he has done on my house, I owe him approximately 128,792 chocolate pies. Only 128,791 more to go....
Here is my mom's first applique quilt. I tease her about always starting with the hardest possible project--can you believe it, a Baltimore album!
I ended up taking the week off from Starbucks and then took off last Thursday and Friday from day job too. We sewed all day on Thursday and mom sewed her applique blocks and sashing together. I think the quilt turned out great!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Returning to Blogland

Well I'm back to blogging and my usual routine. My parents were visiting last week so I got behind in blogging and emailing and responding to comments and all that. They left on Saturday and went from pretty, flowering Spring here in the ATL to preparing for snow in Michigan. We had a great time this past week and I am so glad they could come and visit.

It will take me a couple of posts to catch up on all the fun we had last week so let's jump back to last weekend and the Atlanta Shop Hop. I hope everyone visited Becky's blog to see her great photos.

Becky was so kind to invite me and my mom to shop hop with her and drive in the rainy weather. Thank you again Becky!!!! The first shop we went to was of course Sweet Home Quilt Co. (aka Bad Melisa's). I found this super cute bundle of Bunny Hill's Chelsea Manor

How can anyone resist this cuteness? Do I know what I'm going to use it for? No not really. The next shop was clear across the other side of town to Little Quilts. Now I just went to Little Quilts earlier in the month but somehow I found some goodies I had overlooked earlier.
A little bundle of Moda's Beach House and a little bundle of new Jo Morton shirtings and a charm pack of some really weird-colored Civil War fabrics.
The next stop was Tiny Stitches in Marietta.
I found some great sale fabrics They are more purple than blue (I couldn't get the color corrected right) and I'm going to use them to make pillow cases.
I also found some great new Fig Tree fabrics for not one but TWO Fig Tree jelly rolls I have hanging out and waiting for a project.
Well those are all my goodies from Shop Hop. Tomorrow's post is pie and applique!