Thursday, January 31, 2008

Has anybod else tried these?

No Pudge! brownies! I'm on a no chocolate kick (at least no chocolate bars, truffles, M&Ms etc.) at the moment and my pants are a tiny bit looser (yay). I've managed not to buy any for over a week!! But I was a sucker for these brownies. Not bad at all either! As a die-hard chocoholic I approve. :-)

Monday, January 28, 2008

Monday stuff

Today I got a few things done...despite the fact it is Monday. The most important was having the heating fixed in the old part of the house! We are waiting for a part but we do have real heat now (as opposed to the pretend heat we had before).

I jumped into the Bargello Bowl with two feet. The strips are all cut. I was having so much fun! But it sure does make one realize just how much fabric is in one's stash. (Who? Me?)
I couldn't stop there. I had to lay them all out and make my four stacks ready to go. It was all I could do to stop myself from sitting right down at the sewing machine!

Instead I finished up my Tazzie Sewing Machine Mat. Cute.

Yesterday I bought some fabric for finishing up my Carolina Crossroads quilt top. I decided I just couldn't use anymore of the screaming pink fabric in the border (to say nothing of the blue or the print). The quilt is so loud already it's going to keep me awake if I try to sleep under it! I shopped my stash but nothing was either large enough or suitable, so I dragged The Tramp to the store to help me find an alternative. So what did I get? Another screaming pink! I have to audition it further but I think the different print is just restful enough. We'll see. It's all a mystery to me....sigh. (Shoot me. I couldn't resist saying that!)
LOL Don'tcha love it? I'm getting ready!!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

UFOs are landing!!

Since the Janome was out being adjusted/cleaned/repaired (whatever) I've been looking around at what else I could accomplish. (Actually it's back but not up on the frame yet.) I have SCADS of UFOs so it's just a question of what to tackle first.

I have a bunch of Sweet Treats and patterns from the Pincushion Boutique that I bought over the years at the Bayberry Quilters shows in Cape Cod, MA. One quilt top was almost finished! It took me less than an hour to finish it up and iron it. I love it and can't wait to quilt it. This picture is from the pattern. My fabrics are just a little different.

Then I dragged out my Tabitha Quilts Seminole Squares Quiltcoat kit. This I bought many moons ago at a Northern Star Quilter's show in Westchester County, NY. I spent some time ironing the fabrics and checking the yardage. Well damn. I've been shorted on the lining fabric. I'm thinking I can line the sleeves in something different. We'll see. It's going to be stunning when it's finished though! The fabrics in my kit are black and burgundy/plum with lots of gold glitz.

I also put new borders on Stargazey Heartz. This one has been put away for years. I started quilting it twice and hated it so I gave up. I bought it as a kit and hated the background fabric too. I bought new border fabric to spark it up, so now it's waiting to be quilted.
Grumble...if I could get iPhoto to cooperate I have a pic.....

Ahhhh. This is the ugly UFO.
This should be better!
Oh my! I didn't realize how late it is. Good night!!!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Long productive day. :-)

Tired! Me. I was on my feet all day long and I can feel them buzzing with tiredness.

As the Janome is in the shop I took a break from sewing and gave my study a deep cleaning...right down to the carpet.

I cleaned tons of clutter, dusted all the surfaces, sorted out the shelves and labeled containers. I bought those extra large Ziploc bags the other day and sorted my UFOs into them and got them up onto the shelves.

Scrubbed spots on the carpet and then cleaned the whole thing. It looks pretty good except for that ugly round spot that was under a chair when this was the photo studio office. But it's better...and it smells good. :-)

This evening I decided to finish the cleaning and sorting job by cutting up my ever-growing pile of scraps. I labeled all the containers today and am very pleased with myself. LOL

Awwwwww..... Mama and baby. (My goodness...I am tired!)
Next project is to clean, polish and service both machines and the Featherweight case.

And my Christmas cactus decided to put out one last flower. Nice.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


It's been a productive but also hugely frustrating last few days. Basking in the glow of finishing the top of my Carolina Crossroads mystery quilt I plunged into a new project with just a few days to complete it. A gift. That I wanted to give tomorrow. Can you guess...we've reached the frustrating part....sigh.

The new project is a wall hanging. In the fall I bought (used) a Little Gracie II frame with a Janome 1600P. I loaded it up with a couple of yards of floral fabric and I've been practicing. I now know what it's limitations are and can work with those and still do some ok quilting with it. So this morning I loaded the wall hanging...the first real project on the machine. And the Janome went nuts on me. :-( So now it's in the shop, and I'll be presenting a half done wall hanging as a birthday present tomorrow. The good news is that it's for Mom....and she's going to love it...warts and all. :-)

So there it is....sans machine.

I had a fit of whimsy last weekend and painted my ironing table purple. :-) Hah. Look at that. It matches the offending Janome.

I tried to get a better picture of Carolina Crossroads but something about the print fabric I used muddies the photo. It gives a weird effect. Anyway, I lay it out to show off to Mom and Dad and of course Dad immediately spotted a mistake! Well shoot. It's going to stay like that.

Sunday, January 20, 2008


But the center of my Carolina Crossroads mystery quilt is together. Woooohooooo! It's a rotten photo so we'll take it outside tomorrow for a better one. (It's been snowing! ) I agree with Bonnie....I love quilts with feet! LOL

Ngaire gave up and went to sleep in front of my sewing table.

Belle wants to sit on my lap while I'm at the machine but it makes my legs ache after a while. She's tiny and I have to keep my knees together to stop her from slipping through. So she complained and complained and I had to compromise and put her up on the table, where she slept contentedly for hours. :-)

She's sleeping so soundly. This is what I should be doing right about now!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

And there was light....

And it was good.

Yesterday we had three 10 inch Solatubes installed in the cave kitchen. It was late-ish in the day so we didn't get the full effect. This morning I sat eating my Corn Flakes and watched the sun come up in the kitchen. :-)

Wow! What a difference. Now I don't have to leave lights on in there all day long! I even have to suppress the urge to turn lights off! LOL It's great!!

So the roof has sprouted domes....

I had to defeat the camera's wish to use the flash so this is a bit out of focus. I should have taken a before photo. It really was like living in a cave at this end of the room.

There's a window at the right over the sink but I still needed light to do anything since the window faces north and is in the "el" of the house. So very cool. The *&@%$# new windows have been such a saga it's so nice that this was so worth it!

Of course there is always a I really do have to keep up after the dog hair. Black hair (and muddy paw prints) on all that white floor. I can see it! Sigh....

Sunday, January 13, 2008


I found this here. Funny thing is just today I painted the first coat on the sideboard I use as my ironing center....and it's purple! I've also painted the new shelves for my sewing room bright green. It seems I'm on the right track! :-)

You Need Some Purple in Your Life

Purple will make you feel ambitious, independent, and creative.
And with a little purple, you will project an aura of individuality.
If you want more extravagance, you've got to get a little purple in your life!

For extra punch: Combine purple with green or orange

The downside of purple: It can evoke sad feelings

The consequences of more purple in your life:

You will feel an increase in your artistic abilities
You will find balance in the most chaotic parts of your life
You will feel calm and will be hard to disturb

Friday, January 11, 2008

Done with Step 6!

I finished step 6 of Bonnie's mystery quilt. Many people are making their quilts from scraps but I decided to go with just 3 fabrics. I'm really pleased with how it's coming out. The main design turns out to be made of Ohio star blocks. Very nice!

I know they won't necessarily be put together this way but I couldn't resist putting the blocks up on my design wall and admiring the effect.

Somehow these 16 half star blocks and the 4 smaller blocks will fit in too, and I bet there is some sashing involved. Oh well, have to be patient for a week and wait for the next installment.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


Sigh...wrong again! Tiger isn't new, Leopard is. Can you tell I'd rather be working on step 6 of the mystery quilt than messing with this laptop??? :-) Anyway, struggle as I might I just couldn't covert a batch of photos. I tried to think of all of the things The Tramp would tell me to do to fix the problem. I closed and reopened software and fiddled all around with no luck, so I gave up.

So tonight after dinner I sent the workflow file to The Tramp and of course he comes back to me in minutes saying what's the problem, it's working fine. So I tried it again and does work! I can't figure out if the computer gods are with me or agin me....sheesh. I guess the software just needed to "rest" awhile. Yes...I know...any geek who reads this will wet their pants laughing...but this kind of stuff happens all the time!!! REALLY!

So...where was I before I was so rudely embarrassed by a hunk of circuitry....

Oh yes, photos!

New photos of my beautiful grandbaby! Those dark eyes just slay me...sigh. :-)

Uhhhh...what else did I say I/we were doing. Oh yes, the house is back to normal again. Look Ma, no garland! I've finished the first five steps of Bonnie's mystery quilt. I just printed out step 6. Woot!
I've had this bag pattern for months and I finally got a chance to make it. I really like it. The pattern is "On the Breeze" by Scrap-bags.

Today while waiting for the window man I started sorting my stacks of loose recipes into a new binder.
And I dusted off my bread machine and made English Muffin Bread. And it came out good!!! (always a bit of a shock) Last week I got serious with a hunk of Creative Paperclay. It's far from finished but not a bad start for a beginner. Mom and Dad are moving again, to a house just down the road from us. It's a great house and it'll be really nice to be so close. And a couple of dog photos thrown in for giggles. Happiness is, apparently, not just laying at your master's feet...but also using them as a pillow.
Sheer bliss.....


I enjoy writing weblogs, I really do. I like taking photos for the weblog and showing them off. What I don't like is resizing them all before posting them. Grumble. I've been using GraphicConverter and converting one photo at a time. It got old. Grumble.

Today The Tramp sent me a tutorial on using Automator (Mac OS X Tiger) to create a batch conversion program. Very cool! Except I can't get it to work. Grumble. Tiger is new so why is the version of Automator in the tutorial clearly different than mine? Grumble.

Today he said he was in awe of my lethal software was crashing all around me. Grumble. I think I should stick to my sewing machine as he also said - and I quote - "To be a programmer you need to enjoy the challenge of such puzzles." Sheesh...this is NOT me. The Tramp is assured that I will keep him around to fix these things for me. Love you honey. Grumble, grumble, grumble.

When I have a batch of converted photos (grumble) I will share that I've been busy. The Christmas stuff is put away, the floors etc cleaned, bread baked, Silverline was here with the three replacement window sashes (a whole other rant), some major yard cleaning happened, I'm caught up with Bonnie's mystery quilt, we joined the local health club, I messed around with sculpting, finished a couple of UFOs and so on and so on and so on.