Saturday, March 31, 2018

A Star is Made

Here it is a Saturday and I am writing my blog.  I have a couple of things to share and one of them is this months challenge from Island Batik.  Our March challenge was to try a new technique and I cheated a little as I had tried to make the Lone Star pattern before but failed miserably.
As that was many years ago before rulers and rotary cutters (not to mention machines with a 1/4 inch foot) I figured I might have a better chance this time around.  I not only had all those tools now but a lot more experience and, of course, wonderful fabrics with which to work.

In order to give myself an even better chance at success, I chose a pattern that consisted of a single star with much larger pieces than my first attempt.  I am quite pleased with the result and may even go back to that other patterns and give it a try.

As you can see, I haven't got it quilted as yet.  I want to use another machine foot that I recently acquired and do stitch in the ditch on the star.  Haven't decided what I will do in the black area-maybe shadow quilting.
My other little bit of news is also related to Island Batik.  As an ambassador I have got to know many fine quilters and pattern designer's.  I am also pleased to be able to share with you that a member of my on line group (hearts2hands) recently had a pattern accepted for the IB catalogue.  You can see the pattern designed by PineRose and the catalogue itself by clicking on the link below.  Way to go, Eileen.  We are so proud of you.  By the way, take time to look through the catalogue and drool over the fabric and get some of the patterns.  The IB site does also have free ones as well as those in the book.


Friday, March 30, 2018

Pictures Do Lie

I am not even going to tell you how busy this week was.  You probably knew that from my lack of posts.  I did manage to sneak in a bit of quilting but it was mostly sitting at the computer and working through various lessons.
I will be posting a photo of this month Island Batik project tomorrow-I am glad this month has 31 days but I thought you might also be interested in a picture I created.

The background of this montage is a photo of our bush.  I duplicated it and then flipped the copy and joined it to the other to make one wide image.  I then added the photos of the flowers, butterfly, turtle and deer.  The two animals were also from property scenes.  I cropped the deer's body so I could put him behind a tree.  I had a lot of fun doing this and had to make myself stop so I could send it in.
An old saying is that pictures don't lie but, as you can see, they definitely do.
I hope you all have some pleasant plans for the weekend.  Hubby, Heidi and I are going to his families on Sunday.  We will all go to church together and then have dinner.  

Friday, March 23, 2018


I finally have some photos of my quilting to share with you.
 The first are a couple of the 365 blocks I just finished; the light coloured one was completed yesterday. These are 6.5 inch squares.

This little lap sized quilt is one of the ones I am making to give to a charity.  Very simple pattern but colourful and comfy.  I am just finishing another which was backed with fleece.  The top for that one was made at hearts2hands yahoo groups recent virtual retreat.  
Another top is partially started and I have fabric set aside for others.  I don't have to get these all done until the fall but knowing how schedules can rapidly change, I wanted to keep working on them now.  Besides, they are a good way to use up fabric that has been sitting around for ages.
Heidi and I went for an extra long walk today as the weather was so nice.  It isn't warm yet but the sun is nice and bright.  It is hard to come inside but I had been neglecting my sewing machine for far to long so in I went.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

No News Equals More Time

Hubby and I decided to forgo the morning news today and we were both able to get considerably more accomplished. I am usually not getting at the house stuff until nineish and I like to be in the office for ten so I have to hustle to just get the basic things finished.
This morning, I made a big kettle of Irish stew, cooked and peeled 2 dozen hard boiled eggs, did the dishes, brought in wood and the usual sweeping and bed making.  All this before 9.30.
We do like to know what is going on in the world but the 20 minutes or so of actual news gets stretched to 3 hours of fashion, cooking, exercise, entertainment, videos and kibitzing amongst the news anchors. We usually just watch the last hour or so but even then it is too long.
I did finish another 365 block and did some review work on my course.  I finished it a day and a half early so tomorrow I may be able to get in a good day of sewing.
It was warm enough today that we left the wood stove go out after the stew had cooked.  As the snow is melting and the frozen ground is turning to mud, I am looking forward to seeing my spring flowers.
I have a few plants started indoors and one of the geraniums has a bloom begining.  That will be cheerful.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

So Far Behind, I am Ahead.

It was hard staying indoors today.  It wasn't especially warm but the sunshine was lovely.  My afternoon walk got extended a bit longer than usual.  The birch tree on my sister's property was beautiful with the spreading white branches against the dark blue sky. I sat on the back step for a bit after getting home and then filled the bird feeders before coming inside and getting back at my course.
This weeks assignment is much harder than last week.  I have been working on the same project on and off all day and still haven't got it.  I think I have had enough for today and will take a break.  Perhaps tomorrow the light bulb will come on.
I have started back at working on those 365 blocks.  The idea was to do one a day but I am on June 14th obviously from last year.  I guess I could pretend I am ahead for 2018!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Fun with Pictures

I have been having fun playing around with photoshop today.  I put bison into an area field, removed the ire tube that my brother was using to float with his dog and just goofed around.  I am not proficient by any means but am learning.
I also did some quilting.  I loaded one of the charity quilts and started getting it quilted.  I am not doing anything fancy as this is a case of 'done' being better than fancy.  I need to get a few more finished so will perhaps try to ignore the computer tomorrow and do another.
It started out as a cool day but warmed up in the afternoon and the sunshine was really nice so I went for a walk with Heidi.  I haven't been able to get out for a while as I have either been busy or it was too icy.  I am hoping I can get back to routine now.
If you are Irish or want to be,  Happy St. Patrick's Day tomorrow.  My father's family came from the Emerald Isle a few generations back so I have a bit of green in my blood.
This was one of the class projects.  The hiker was taken from o a mountain rock and put in this picture.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Sudoku Quilts

Last Saturday, our online group (hearts2hands) had a virtual retreat.  If you can't get away for a real one, this is a great alternative.  A bit of time and a good imagination helps make the event a fun time.  Our group has got very good at imagining our location, wait staff, accommodation and food.  It can get quite exotic with pool boys and food that would be served to the very wealthy.  We have also 'met' at a restored Victorian home with crisp white sheets and four poster beds draped with quilts.  We have be transported by private jet, met with limos and pampered by personal spas and massage therapists.
As my brother said, when you are poor you can dream big.  None of us would claim either poverty or wealth but we can certainly dream.
This quilt was the result of a mystery project taught by one of the members.  It is a Sudoku quilt and comes together very quickly.  It also helped get rid of some more of my fabric that has well aged.

My course is going well.  We are now learning to use the Photoship program and I am having lots of fun experimenting with all the options.
We are still getting snow.  Not a lot but it is still falling and accumulating.

Friday, March 9, 2018


I just found out that I can use code rather than the hosts templates to redesign my web page.  I have started a little work on it this evening but I have a lot of work to do.  I want it to be a lot more interactive and less cluttered.
I baked, baked baked today.  I was going to do some jam but discovered I didn't have any lids.  I id make pumpkin muffins, a couple of casseroles, spaghetti sauce, a quiche and some egg salad for sandwiches.  I also intended to make some cookies but I ran out of steam.
It snowed most of the day so I may get to snowshoe yet.  We are going to try for Sunday.  Tomorrow, our on line group is having a virtual retreat so I will be having fun eating virtual goodies and doing some real sewing.  One of the members has a quilt pattern she is going to teach.  I have my fabric cut out and ready.
Don't forget to put your clock forward tomorrow.  I will do the one in the bedroom tomorrow morning so I will know at least one will be ready.

Sharing a video with you this time.  Amazing!


Thursday, March 8, 2018

Flowers and Quilts

 Here is a preview of a charity top that I have almost completed.  I only have to sew the blocks together and add a couple of borders and I can get this one on the machine.  I got one other top finished and I hope to have it quilted this weekend so I can do the binding at group on Monday.

I am not sure what kind of plant this is but it has been blooming for a number of weeks now adding some colour to my studio.  I have a geranium that I brought indoors last fall in another window and it hasn't stopped showing off its flowers.  Both plants make for a cheery sight on a dreary day.
I need to get my vegetable and flowers seeds started.  It is only 10 weeks until planting time and they will slip away quickly enough.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Happy Family Photo

Have you been nominated in Facebook to post a black and white photo for seven days?  I usually ignore those things but when it is a sister who asks, you do it.  I really like black and white photos and one of my nephews who is a professional photographer takes outstanding ones.
On my last day of the challenge, I posted one of my favourite photos.  My father took a picture of my siblings and I sitting on a snowbank and we all look so happy.  There is something about the photo that really appeals to me. You can certainly tell we are related.  We all have the same smile.
I finished my class work really early this week so now can spend a good bit of time quilting.  Life is good.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Ahead of Schedule.

I am well ahead on my course this week. I sent in one of this weeks assignments today and only have one more to do.  I should have some time to quilt.  I have a few things to get done so if I can catch up on those I will be ready to get my nose back to the grindstone next week.
I finished the binding on my bargello on the weekend and only have a couple more points to do on my lone star so I am managing to get some things done despite my schedule.
I had a magazine assignment that needed to be done before the end of the month and that too is finished.  It really does make a different with hubby taking care of the meals.
Our weather has been nice for getting outside.  The sun is bright and the temperatures around the freezing mark.  The chickens have been enjoying the fresh air as well.  It took a bit of time for the new ones to get up the courage to leave the coop but they were all out today.  It won't be long before I will be able to give them some fresh greenery.  Once the snow is gone they will be allowed to run free.  For now, they are better off in the enclosed area.
A lot of people seem to have a nasty cold right now.  I haven't heard of anyone with the flu but this cold hangs on for a long time.  Hope you are well and enjoying your favourite activities.

Sunday, March 4, 2018


Ignore this post.  I have been goofing around with some coding.  Haven't worked it out yet.
Hope everyone is having a good weekend and thanks for the heads up, Kathleen.

C:\users\anna\documents\my eq7\images:="modernquilt";



Friday, March 2, 2018

Wasting Time

It feels odd to have some free time.  I finished this weeks course assignments a day and a half early and now have half of next weeks finished. I got my hair done this morning, did some quilting and some time wasting activities just because I could.  I am going over some of my notes and work so I keep mentally ready for next week. Hope the rest of the weeks are as easy as this one.
A friend has started a small home baking business making gluten free food.  I picked up some butter tarts yesterday and they are every bit as good as ones made with regular ingredients.  If you live in the area and are interested, I can give you her contact information.
A lot of the southern part of our province got a lot of snow but, here in the north and central part sailed through the day with just a nasty wind.  It is a long way from Spring yet but it is nice to get a  break from paying for snow removal.
I am hoping to get a quilt on the frame this weekend and get another one off the UFO list.