Thursday, March 31, 2011

Two more!

I finished another two quilts to take to Dr. Kaufman.  These were done with 30s prints, the first one from Yetta.  

These quilts were finished with scraps of this and that.  I had some sheeting, that was just not enough for both quilts, so I pieced some leftovers from previous quilts.  I also pieced some leftovers of battings together.  
This second 30s quilt was from Kathi.  

I liked the effect of this pantograph, Ribbon Wrap.  It's more visible on the back.
I now have eight quilts to deliver plus the raffle quilt.  

Have you heard about Fiber Arts Fiesta, this May in Albuquerque?  I'm hoping to take a class being offered if there are enough people signed up.  They're doing a fundraiser with JDRF and I'm also hoping to get some postcards and other gift items to donate for that.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Couple more finished

My friend Rosie called me a while back from her weekly trek to the swap meet.  There was some Raggedy Ann print fabric she thought I'd be interested in.  Indeed I was, and it was perfect backing for two string quilts, from the bounty I got at the AZ retreat.
I loaded the entire piece and fortunately the quilts weren't bigger than the width of the fabric.  I was able to just quilt them consecutively, and that's always a plus.  This one is from Yetta.
Dee put this one together at the retreat.  My retreat time isn't about's all about the socializing and eating!  ;-)  Now it's time for dieting and finishing the bounty of quilts I got.  Thanks again everyone!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Finally finished

I got this wonderful quilt from Colene at the retreat in AZ, and after adding an (ar)resting strip and borders, I loaded it on the longarm.  I found the perfect backing, a king size sheet in a light gold color.  It was just a bit short, so then I started combing my stash for a strip to piece in.  With Dale's input I picked a print that I thought worked. 

 It turned out to be a generous queen size.  Pat has trained me to prefer quilts with ample drape on the sides.  I decided to do a pantograph, Quills, in the center, a Native American feather design in the borders, and a freehand design in the resting strip.  I had to reload the quilt to do the feathers on the side border.  

All this to say it's been on my machine a lot longer than most of the kid sized quilts I usually do.  I hope it's wildly successful when it's raffled!
 It's been fun to recognize some of the blocks I made from the swap I participated in.  I also have a stash of these black and batik blocks to put together into a quilt sometime!

Little bat

I noticed this little guy, yesterday just under the eaves on the garage wall.  

I think it's  Mexican free-tailed bat.  It hasn't appeared to move from that spot, and I hope he or she is okay.  I don't know that we can do anything for it.  With all the wind we've had and cooler temperatures over the last couple of days, I know it can't be a good thing for it.


Monday, March 21, 2011

Super Moon!

Did you catch the super full moon on Saturday night?  It was pretty spectacular, but my attempts to photograph it were less than stellar.  

This morning it looked pretty good as it was setting, and still "full" according to my atomic clock which shows the moon phases.  I have better luck with pictures of the moon setting.  

Spring has also arrived with much warmer, though still rather windy days.  My daffodils blossomed!  Last year they tried to flower, but we had such dry, windy weather that the blooms withered without opening.  They are one of my favorite flowers.  Happy Spring Dance!!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

San Lorenzo Canyon, NM

Dale loves to go hiking, and I don't usually accompany him, though I'm never sorry when I do.  Given bad knees, it's been a while since I've hiked anywhere.  The last time I recall was after a double dose injection of steroids before my right total knee, and we went camping in Wyoming.  

Recently he has checked out San Lorenzo Canyon, just north of Socorro, NM.  The first time he was there, he followed a trail which unfortunately got him to the rim of the canyon with no way to get into the canyon itself. 
The second time he scrambled up the rocky dead end of where you can drive to, and was rewarded with the canyon floor.  He really wanted to take me there, though he wasn't sure I could make it up.  In any case, the drive there is pretty, with lots of interesting vistas.  

Once you get up this steep rocky area, you are walking on nice sandy gravel of the canyon floor.  It does rise a bit, a little over a mile to the "end," at the largest of little springs along the way where we ate our lunch. 
We waited until we had the best possible forecast weather, and we weren't disappointed.  It was sunny, with nice breezes to keep us from overheating, though we each got a little overexposed with sun! 

I was really happy I made it up the steep, rocky access to the canyon floor.  Going back down was trickier, and I ended up just sliding down on my butt and inching my way back down.  Fortunately my left knee isn't killing me this morning!  I'm having to relearn coping with a bad knee...up with the good, down with the bad, but now my total knee is the "good," stronger knee.  

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I won again!

I love blog giveaways and since I have a number of blogs I routinely follow, I frequently leave comments in order to win something!  One of these blogs is While She Naps, which I've followed for a long while.  Abby has been posting wonderful tutorials on making softies.  I haven't been brave enough to design my own yet.

With this eBook I won, Anatomy of a Doll, I'm hoping to be brave enough to try.  I have a number of "Greeter" heads that I hope to create a soft body for.

I'm nearing my 200th post here, and I'm thinking I should have a giveaway myself.  Pretty paltry number since I've had this blog since fall of 2005!  I'll try to come up with something good for the giveaway!  Stay tuned!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Thanks Dee!

It's great to have friends, even better when they like to quilt and contribute to your cause.  I got so many tops at the retreat this year, and I'm working on getting them quilted up to give to Dr. Kaufman.  

Dee made these three tops, and I had a nice, wide, decorator type fabric that worked great for backing.  I was able to load one piece and put all three quilts on it.  This largest of the three got a truck pantograph since I thought the colors made it boy friendly.

  These next two, were more suitable for girls and I did an easier heart vine pantograph, which went a lot quicker than the trucks.

 Dee also made coordinating binding to go with the quilts, making the whole process even easier.  I must admit though that quilting and binding are my favorite parts of the process.  Piecing becomes tedious to me rather quickly, especially when a quilt requires making the same block over and over. 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Postal bounty

We generally walk to the post office (less than two mile round trip) every day when the weather cooperates.  When it doesn't, I drive, or don't bother to go at all if I'm not expecting anything.  Lately the winds have been blowing rather fiercely, and on the few days we were able to walk, we made it back home before they kicked into high gear.

Dale went hiking and I walked to the post office alone.  I was richly rewarded with the bounty below.  All unexpected except for the 2.5" fabric noodles which were from a swap on  The book was from Pat and the pincushion from Rosie.  Now I just need a good pattern to start using the "noodles."

Spring is just around the corner, though sometimes it feels far away still.  Hoping we have a peach crop this year.  

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

My favorite part

I brought back a lot of quilt tops from the retreat in Phoenix.  The first one I finished was a mystery quilt for one of the attendees.  My own mystery quilt from the forum is languishing in a project box--I abandoned it when one of the fabrics I picked wasn't quite enough to eke out the necessary number of blocks.  I haven't found an adequate replacement.  I used a pantograph which featured Saturn and stars on it, and her son is happy with his quilt.

The next finish was for one of three of Pat's nieces that's getting married this year.  Two of them opted for homespuns, primitive, and Pat will also likely make the same quilt for their mother!  I was happy not to be doing the piecing, and Pat churned out this quilt, just starting it at retreat and finishing it up on the Monday after it so that I could bring it back to NM with me.  I used a Hibiscus pantograph on it which is dense to hold all those homespun seams together.

I had a deadline, since another retreat attendee was coming to Albuquerque for work, and I could send the quilt back to Phoenix with her.  I also got lots of blocks at the retreat and I put this little quilt together as a diversion, or you could say (if you know me well) procrastinating on finishing the big quilt!  I had the five pastel blocks and just added to it to make it a baby size quilt.  Dr. Kaufman occasionally gets babies, and I figured she'd find a home for it.  I used the Mandarin Garden pantograph again.  I do really like this panto, and it's much more manageable on this little quilt.  Wouldn't want to do a bed sized quilt with it.  I used a satiny polyester fabric I found in my stash for a backing.  It's really soft and light.
Thanks to the maker of the blocks--I don't know where exactly they came from, but have they found a home.  As they say in Brazil, "Deus te pague," which translates loosely to God will repay you.  My dad always jokingly adds to the sayer--don't be putting your debts off on God.  ;-)