Sunday School

The church that I attend every week is small and friendly, and our pastor is fantastic.  This is not only my humble opinion, but the consensus of opinion of everyone who attends or even knows her.  We are so lucky to have such a great teacher, preacher, and leader.

She also teaches Sunday School and every Sunday there is something said or an idea expressed that sparks the hope in me of being a better person.  I always leave feeling that I can do better and full of optimism that the week ahead will be good.

What a great way to start each week.  I feel blessed and very thankful.

Keeping up



Right now I’m feeling like it is impossible to keep up.

My quilting space looks like a tornado came through.  My desk is piled high with bills to pay and papers to sort out.  My jewelry drawer is a royal mess.  Then there are pictures, both digital and old prints in storage boxes all awaiting some organization.  There are cards to write and letters to answer. There is filing to be done – paid bills, medical information, journals, and things to put in scrapbooks.

Most of the time I manage to keep the kitchen clean and the dishes washed.  Most of the time I get my bills paid on time and at least once a week I manage to get my desk cleaned off.  Most of the time I manage to answer emails and file them in an organized manner.

But then there are all my quilting projects.  I have so many projects going right now I ran out of table space and project boxes.  In spite of that, I started a new quilt today.  Yikes!

In the scheme of things, these are small problems I know, but still I am feeling like I just can’t seem to keep up and it makes me weary.

For now, I will make a cup of tea and head to bed to read.  Tomorrow will be soon enough to work on keeping up.



I have a big heart…..

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Today I attended an all day class on invisible applique.  The teacher was very good.  We started out by cleaning our machines!  I never had that happen in a class before, but it was very informative and a great way to start a good habit.  Then we did our first piece of applique – a simple heart.

The heart is not the only thing we did in the class.  We all worked on our separate applique patterns, drawing our shapes on freezer paper, cutting the shapes out, ironing the shapes on the back of our fabric, and cutting the shapes out with a quarter inch seam allowance.  Then came the gluing of the seam allowance to the back – using rubber cement – and finally sewing the shapes to the background using invisible thread with a teeny tiny stitch.

It was tedious work. It looks wonderful when it is done right, but much too tedious for me.  And trying to thread the machine with that springy invisible thread was a real challenge.  I enjoyed the teacher and the fellow quilters, so the day was fun – BUT – I’m going back to fusible raw-edge applique.  (so much easier)

I’ll save the above heart in my orphan block drawer and someday it might make it into a quilt.

And finally, quilting blogs….

Among my favorite quilting blogs is Country Threads Chicken Scratch.  Country Threads used to be a wonderful quilt shop in Garner Iowa, but the shop is closed now as the owners retired.  Mary still lives on the farm where this shop was located.  Besides quilting, she also boards dogs and takes in stray animals.  She continues to quilt and post pictures of her projects, but I love to see the pictures of the animals the most.

Exuberant Color is the very creative Wanda who lives in Sandwich Illinois.  She uses color brilliantly in color wash quilts, and quilts using Kaffe Fasset fabric.  She also gardens and posts beautiful pictures every day.  Yes, Every Day.

Making Scratch Quilts From Stash, by Mary/Molly (she goes by either name), who is highly organized with To Do lists and goals.  She has two homes, two sons, grandchildren, and is in self-imposed training for a marathon or two.  Her quilts are usually simple, but colorful and gorgeous.  She also knits lovely shawls.  She takes wonderful pictures and posts regularly.

Maureen’s World is by Moe, who just so happens to be in my Bee group.  She is one of the most positive people I know, always excited about her projects, quilting, and life in general.  I am constantly inspired by her enthusiasm.  She works long hard hours so doesn’t have much time for posting to her blog, but when she does you can be guaranteed that it will be good.

Aby Quilts comes from Norway.  She always has lots of projects going and spends many weekends with her friends at a cabin where they work on their various projects.  When she posts pictures of her work in progress, there is usually a glass of wine beside the project, or a fire in the fireplace, or her beloved cat snuggling on the quilt.

And finally Fiber Antics by Veronica is the wonderful creative artist that leads a small group of ladies who trade Artist’s Trading Cards each month.  I belong to this group.  I don’t really consider myself much of an artist, but I enjoy the challenge each month and get a real kick out of the cards I get in trade. Some day I would love to meet Veronica in person. She quilts, teaches, and is a wonderful artist.  She also is a sales rep for several fabric lines.

That’s it for my lists of favorite blogs.  Tomorrow I am taking a class and will write about the results of that class.  It is a class on machine applique.  Invisible applique by machine.  Raw edge invisible applique.  Hmmmmm.  Hope I learn a lot.






More about blogs….

Although most of the blogs I read are about quilting, here are some non-quilt blogs I read on a regular basis.

Richard Is Living With ALS (, a man in Calgary Canada who writes about his day to day struggles with the debilitating disease ALS.  I read it because a close relative of mine has ALS and I want to understand better.

I also read Susan Branch’s blog because it has wonderful hand painted pictures, photos of her beautiful home, and lighthearted writing about her life.

Attic 24 is written by a young mother in Northern England and she does a lot of crochet using bright colors.  She also takes long walks with her family.  Her pictures are of her colorful afghans, cozy home scenes, and wonderful nature shots along a small river.

Margaret in New Zealand is a lovely sweet woman who takes care of her mother, works in a prison, and does stitchery.  Her life is simple and gentle.  She takes loving care of her mother, reads lots of library books, and is frugal in her stitching saving scraps of linen for small projects.  I wish she lived next door. (Coni) is a young woman in Indiana who stitches, writes with good humor, has a little dog named Stewey, and a sister that helps her in good ways like a sister should.  Stewey sometimes takes over the blog and writes about the lazy qualities of his dear “Mo-ther”.  You can count on a few laughs, some wonderful stitchery pictures, and sweet pictures of Stewey and sometimes his cousin Bosco.

Tomorrow I will list some of my favorite quilting blogs.

About Blogging…..

The other day I read Mary Fon’s blog ( and she was very excited about the fact that she had been asked to teach some classes at the University of Chicago.  I’d be excited too!  One of her classes is about blogging.  Oh how I would love to take that class, but it is too far for me to travel.

There are blogs I love to read, blogs that have great pictures, and blogs that I follow for a while and then drop for various reasons.  I am turned off by poor spelling and editing, by too many ads (especially pop-ups), and by teeny tiny pictures.  The blogs I like the best are short, to the point, witty or wise, and are usually about quilting.  My start in the blog world was all about quilting – finding ideas, instructions and great pictures.

Too many quilt blogs that were good in the beginning have now turned into blogs that are selling products.  I realize that a lot of folks are trying to make some money to support their quilting habit, but I just want to see good pictures, possibly learn a new technique, and hear about the process of making the quilt.

Lately all my postings about quilting have been on Instagram.  It is fast and easy.  So for now I think I will turn this blog into more about writing, other blogs, and life in general.

Tomorrow I will list some of my favorite blogs – quilting ones and other ones.


Here are some of the projects I have been working on lately.  First is a houses project called Hillside Houses which the LQS is offering in monthly installments.  I completed row three in spite of many, many mistakes on my part.  If only I were more careful in reading instructions………

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While working on this project, I incorporated a “leaders and enders” scrap project making quarter square triangle blocks.  I now have a design board full of 72 blocks – all from my scraps.  (Didn’t put a dent in the 5″ square bin.)

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And yesterday I made a little Sewing Machine block designed by the owner of the LQS.

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Oops, it looks a little crooked.  Might have to do some re-sewing……


My house is in disaster mode.  Before I had a new roof added to my house, I had quite a bit of water damage inside – ceilings and walls.  What I hoped would be an easy fix has turned into all the furniture moved, pictures off the walls, everything covered in plastic including the back door and the microwave!!!!




I had been doing some string piecing on my dining room table in the evenings, but had to move all that to the office.  It is a little cramped and messy.

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It will be wonderful to have everything patched and painted, but in the mean time I do not particularly enjoy living in this chaos.  Big sigh.

Seasoned Hens

Using Lori Holt’s pattern for a hen, I made this tongue in cheek little quilt titled Seasoned Hens – the seasons of Spring, Summer, Fall & Winter, and the seasons of salt and pepper.

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I tried some custom quilting – some figure eights in the sashing, a little motif for the corner, meander in the border, and some cross-hatch for the hen blocks.

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I’m happy with the end result and sure had fun making this quilt.



Jigsaw Puzzles – Part Two

Here are the jigsaw puzzles I assembled this holiday season.

500 piece Chicago puzzle


300 piece Dollar Store puzzle –


500 piece Snowman


300 piece Dollar Store puzzle


500 piece Dollar Store puzzle


The above puzzle had teeny tiny pieces.  Then I opened the next puzzle and it had enormous pieces.

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This last puzzle was the most fun to put together – with the enormous pieces and the colorful Quilt Store theme.  A good way to end 2015 puzzles.