Saturday, July 31, 2010

And the winner is…

Pam from Oregon who made a donation in honor of her sister who is fighting breast cancer this summer. Thank you Pam and please let me know when your box arrives.

Friday, July 30, 2010

I’m so embarrassed

Yesterday was Friday, all day… well it was to me! For some reason all day long I thought it was Friday. I didn’t even realize it wasn’t until my husband got up and went to work today… about ten minutes after he left it hit me… yesterday was THURSDAY… TODAY is Friday… today is the 30th and TOMORROW is the end of the fabric give-away-with-a-catch. The box is packed, all I need is an address to send it to… as soon as picks the winner the box will go off in the mail!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Last chance!

Today is the last day for this give-away-with-a-catch. I am still giving away a box of fabric tomorrow to some lucky donor. The catch is I want a donation too, of course. Cancer is still around, and as long as it is I will be raising money any way I can to help find the cure, or help someone who has cancer in some way. A one dollar donation made on my Relay page and I will put your name in the draw for a lovely box of fabrics.

THIS IS NOT A RAFFLE… I can’t do raffles any more, against the rules, so it’s just a give away.

Look for the donate button on my Relay page, and donate $1. If you are feeling generous, you can still donate on my ACS page too.

I will put all the dollars and ACS donations into and let it pick a winner tomorrow morning, sometime around noon.

And who knows, there might be more than one winner…. I’ve mailed three boxes of fabrics off this month to donors. I’m cleaning up my stash one way or another!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


That was one of my favorite Beatles songs, but that’s another story, LOL! Yesterday was a shaky day and I got to see the specialist again. She lowered the prednisone dosage again and said that might help the shakes. I sure hope so. She also answered a lot of other questions, so I think I am ready to deal with this polywhatever a little better.

I sewed when I got home, quilting a few of the miniatures I’ve made for Ami’s Houston showing of the AAQI. I had hoped to send her 100… now I will be pleased if I send ten, even if they are my own ten. So far I’ve gotten one from other people, but am told more are on the way .

Maybe if I tell them what the prize is… but I thought it would be nice to have a surprise gift for their efforts? It is a very nice gift, retails for $50 and will really “light” up the winners’ sewing life.

Today is starting out shaky too, but I still plan to sew some more… I have another hopefully creative idea for miniatures.

Monday, July 26, 2010

State Fair

No not the book or the quilt pattern, but it is quilt related. Our Delaware State Fair is ongoing right now, but I’m not going… don’t like the crowds, noise or the heat. However my friend Jackie is a proud owner of a blue ribbon this year, a well deserved one too. Here’s her quilt. (not my pattern FYI)

Another friend also won several ribbons, four first places, a third place and a special Judges Award which she will receive from the Governor himself. Way to go Lucy!

Another internet friend let me know that her quilt made from one of my patterns won Best Of Show at their State Fair and this morning I got an email from a new friend who got a Grand Champion Award at her State Fair for king sized Dublin Steps quilt which she made from my pattern.

I’m quite proud and very pleased and I don’t even have to go to the fairs!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Finish sort-of and an update

First, TaaDaa I finished my Super Duper Easy top just now. I was so happy to get it done I had John hold it up while I photographed it, then realized I hadn’t even pressed it yet. Oh well, I get to show you all I finished it. I’ll press it, and send it off to the quilter as soon as she is ready for it. I’m very happy to have it finished and really like it!

Several people have asked lately how John’s Aunt is doing and I am happy to report very well. She is settled into the home and very much at home there and is even making friends. Well I guess she is making acquaintances more than friends, since she doesn’t remember anyone’s name from one day to the next. Her memory is fading quickly and in that department she’s not so good. She doesn’t know what day of the week it is or what season it is even if it is over 100 degrees outside. Pretty much all she cares about is meal time and taking care of the kitties, although recently she is slipping in the kitty department too. Several times recently the help has told John she isn’t cleaning the kitty litter enough, and he verifies that by the smell when he goes in the room.

That really saddened me, as her kitty little was always very clean, she checked it several times a day and you never smelled anything in the past. She is also over feeding them, as John knows by how fast she goes through the cat food, but I know what she’s doing. It was one of the first signs I had that she had a memory problem…. When I was “visiting” her up in NY she would feed them every 15 minutes or so because she didn’t remember feeding them already. She would get up early in the morning to feed them and they would happily devour their breakfast. 15 minutes or so later she would get up and feed them again because she didn’t remember already doing it, and of course they weren’t hungry and wouldn’t eat. She’d throw out the food thinking they didn’t like it and open a second can. Then 15 minutes later it would start all over again. I am pretty sure she is doing that again or still since she is going through 24 cans or more or cat food less than a week for two kitties.

John was going through some old photos and found this one… this is his Aunt with Michael in our backyard fort in San Antonio. I’m not sure who is having the better time…

Saturday, July 24, 2010

WIP still

My Super Duper Easy is still a WIP… I had hoped to finish it today, but the shakes have taken over. I have ten rows finished, and two more to go, then the border rows. I would sew if I could, but I need to make more star points which means more cutting and I don’t dare cut with the shakes. Maybe if they slow down I’ll attempt it… but in the meantime, back to my book.

Near-Record Heat Bakes the East

I didn’t need to turn on the Weather Channel to find that out, all I had to do was read a few quilters blogs. Everyone on the east coast is saying they plan to stay inside and sew today because of the heat. Looking at my indoor outdoor thermometer I see that at 7:30 in the morning it is already 84.7 out, and from the fog in the windows I can tell it’s pretty humid out there. I hope to be one of those east coast quilters sewing today too.

Today is John’s birthday but he won’t be home to celebrate it. He’s doing a lighthouse tour today. By “doing” I mean leading one. He will be taken out to the lighthouse at the start of the tour and left there until the last tour finishes. That means he will spend most of his birthday standing, sitting, climbing in a lighthouse... if that’s what makes you happy go for it...
Photo added later, where John spent his b'day.

We celebrated his b’day early, meeting the kids in Dover for an exciting night of dinner and gambling. Dinner was very nice, but the long relaxed conversations were nicer. And when we finally did get up and gamble... well that was fun too. I gave each couple $20 to play with. Mike and Kelly went through theirs quickly, and Jonathon went through his half pretty fast too. I left some money at several different machines, and then we all started wandering around the casino looking for a lucky machine. Steph pointed out to me a Survivor machine, and of course I had to try it and she sat down next to me. I took my winnings up to $30, and Steph just kept on winning and winning. She was smart and cashed out when she was up to $56... not me, I spent the whole $20, tisk tisk... All in all if you combine winnings and losses we were only down $4.. not bad for a fun night.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Summer Mystery Quilt

One of my followers who is only a Blog reader asked to see a photo of my Summery Mystery quilt. Sorry I totally forgot to post one on the blog!

The name of this pattern is/was Any Size You Want because I gave everyone the option to pick which size blocks they wanted to make and quilt too. I decided to use a 6 inch block because I had pieces left over from another project and only made what will be a baby quilt when finished.

I have more pieces already made, and I am pretty sure that I will make another one, using ALL the quilt sizes. That is a WHIMM (Work Hidden in My Mind) and or a HSY (pronounced hissy ...means Haven't Started Yet) because I know what I want to make, and I haven’t really started it yet!


It’s nice to get things finished, and today I finished one of my many goals… I delivered a quilt to the quilter. (Hi J!) It was SO nice seeing her and chatting, although I’m afraid I did most of the talking, I haven’t had a female to talk to in ages, LOL! But it was so nice visiting with her and I realized as I was driving home how much I’ve missed quilting friends, the in-person ones. I’d love to remedy that, but since I never know from one day to the next how things will be, it’s hard to make any plans.

I delivered a brand new quilt to be quilted, the first delivery I’ve made to J since June 2008… over two years. YIKES! Since I delivered that quilt I decided I should update my quilt list. I added three new quilts/UFOs/WIPs to the list…
#388, Started Jun-10, November Mystery, Status At quilters’
#389, Started Jul-10, Any Size You Want mystery, Status Top done, needs backing, etc
#390, Started Jul-10, Super Duper Easy, Status WIP (blocks done and 5 rows finished!)

I decided on the way home to sit right down at the machine and do some more quilting, but here I am instead. When I got home I took my meds and almost immediately the shakes set in. Thank goodness I see the Doc on Monday, I hope there is something that can be done… fingers crossed.

How bad are the shakes… I have a collection of T-shirts with coffee stains down the front from my morning coffee. And I won’t tell you how many times I’ve spilled other things… because I have lost count. Just now as I am writing I reached for my ice tea and plop… cup ended up on the floor. Good thing it was empty, it landed on my surge protector!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

a LOT of fabric

Whew Talk about a scare… I got an overdraft notice from our bank for almost $5000. I knew immediately what had happened. I had made a $500 payment recently but must have accidently put $5000… I went on line to check and no that wasn’t it. I had made a successful $600 payment.

However sure enough a $5000 withdrawal had been done on our account on one date, and then reversed a few days later. So I called the bank. They informed me that they had a payment request from another bank we deal with.

I called that bank, one we do a LOT of business with, and had them check my accounts. They checked every single account we have with them and could not find any transfer requests. They transferred me from banking to insurance to mortgage and the same thing in all departments; no requests had been made at all for any money.

So I called back to the other bank and asked them to check into it again. Finally after a five minute hold that seemed to me like five hours they can tell me it was a posting error on the their part.

OK, good news. I said to the nice young man on the phone what about the heart attack they’d caused me, and added that would buy a lot of fabric. He asked me if I was a quilter, and I laughed and asked him how he knew… he laughed also and said he’d guessed from my email address and his mother was a quilter.

And that WOULD buy a lot of fabric, but sadly, I don’t need any more!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

No sewing day

A no nothing day really, since I’ve had the shakes since I woke up and still do. I attempted to sew but decided not to when the first piece I sew required re-doing and Jack the Ripper didn’t work well in shake mode.

Oh I did some laundry, so something useful got done. I finished a book I was reading, despite the shaky book.

And that shaky book lead me to do something I thought I would never do… I downloaded a free reader program to read books on my lap top. I’m one of those old fashioned people who likes reading a real book, turning pages one at a time. I’ve tried ebooks before, but missed the page turning. However with the shakes, the book shakes and that makes reading a little difficult. Do I added a reader program, and downloaded a few free ebooks. Now when I get the shakes I can sit the “book” on my desk and it won’t jiggle as much and maybe I can read it easier.

I’ll let you know how it goes when I start using it. First book I downloaded was The Life & Times of a Boomer Baby which was actually recommended by a friend.

AAQI Special Challenge reminder

The deadline is fast approaching and to date I have ONE quilt to show for our efforts. I had hoped for 100, but …... I have six of my own in the works and plan to work on them today once the shakes have subsided. I wonder if I can make 99 quilts in three weeks?

Remember… I asked you to make a mini using Ami’s guidelines and send it to me and I will have a “show” and award “Best Of Show” and a very nice prize (worth over $50) to the one chosen by viewers’ choice. (One vote per email address) And the 100th miniature to arrive will receive a very nice prize also. (also worth over $50) Details are at

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Important meeting

I’m just home from an important meeting, one of many to come I’m sure… a planning meeting for Michael and Kelly’s wedding. It felt nice to be included and strange too. I’ve never done anything like this before. I’m a wedding planner virgin really. And what is important to couples these days is certainly more complicated than when I get married 40 years ago. But then again I didn’t get the wedding I wanted, but had to settle for what everyone else wanted… I will do my best to make sure Michael and Kelly get what they want and not what everyone else wants… I hope… I need to go buy a lottery ticket, or sell a bridge… or a LOT of quilts!

Fabric give away with a catch

If anyone has forgotten, I have not, I am still giving away a box of fabric on July 31st to some lucky donor. The catch is I want a donation too, of course. Cancer is still around, and as long as it is I will be raising money any way I can to help find the cure, or help someone who has cancer in some way. A one dollar donation made on my Relay page and I will put your name in the draw for a lovely box of fabrics.

THIS IS NOT A RAFFLE… I can’t do raffles any more, against the rules, so it’s just a give away.

Look for the donate button on my Relay page, and donate $1. If you are feeling generous, you can still donate on my ACS page too.

I will put all the dollars and ACS donations into and let it pick a winner on July 31st.

And who knows, there might be more than one winner…. I’ve mailed three boxes of fabrics off this month to donors. I’m cleaning up my stash one way or another!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Uh oh

I didn’t blog yesterday! Wasn’t the only thing I didn’t do, believe me. I had a pretty shaky day yesterday, so basically did a lot of nothing all day long. It’s impossible and unsafe to try to cut when you have the shakes. It is hard to sew when you are shaking too, little hard to keep things lined up when you jiggle them as they go through the machine. It is almost impossible to read with the shakes, the words get blurry when they jiggle. So I ended up playing with EQ a good part of the day, but it was worth it. I “designed” two brand new mysteries yesterday and finished another one I had started a while ago.

Another project I’ve been working on is that back up I said I would do. I have gotten all the “stuff” from the old PC transferred to John’s PC and now on to a back up device. My next step is to make CDs or DVDs of the photos as an additional back up. I might just make two of each, just incase.

I’d like to get my November mystery quilt to the quilter, but the shakes have started up again… you should see all the red lines in this post because of typos.. I counted 32 23 just now… of course I will fix them all before this goes on line. But I will share one funny typo… “It is hard to sew when you are shaking too, little hard to keep things lined up when you giggle them as they go through the machine.” New technique, giggle as you sew.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Step Five

Here is Step Five. I hope you enjoyed this mystery and would love to see photos of your projects if you'd like to share. You can send them to me at

If you enjoy quilting mysteries you might consider joining my Mysteries For Relay group. On that group I host a new mystery about every six weeks in exchange for a donation to my Relay For Life fundraising. The mysteries are my way of saying thank you for your donations. A $5 donation will get you one mystery and a whole year’s worth is a $30 donation. Donations can be made on my current ACS web site which will get you a tax receipt from the ACS or you can make your donation on my Relay web page using PayPal. Yes, I also accept checks, made payable to American Cancer Society. (Email me for snail mail address)

Step Four

Here is Step Four, I will post Step Five in about an hour.

Step Three

Here is Step Three, I will post Step Four in about an hour.

Step Two

Here is Step Two, I will post Step Three in about an hour.

Summer Mystery Starts!

Here is Step one, I will post Step Two in about a half hour.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Starts tomorrow, right here!
Check in about 9 AM Eastern time for Step # 1

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Post #555

I just realized as I started to post this that it will be my 555th post. Amazing. I think in honor of that I will mail another box of fabrics to a donor tomorrow… wonder who wants me to send it to? The last box I sent has not been acknowledged yet, although according to the post office was delivered. I have a suspicion that the donor is off visiting her grandchildren again.

Had the shakes when I got up after a good night's sleep and still do, but despite that I finished my sample for the summer mystery. I’m very happy with the way it came out, and can’t wait to show it off on Saturday. In the mail I got my backing fabric for the November mystery, which is in the washer right now and my navy Kona for my Super Duper Easy which I washed already.

I can sew with the shakes, but I don’t think I will attempt cutting… not worth risking it, I might bleed on my fabric. As soon as I stop shaking I will get the star points cut and start sewing again. In the meantime I’m sewing on my November mystery from last year, Quarter of a Court House. Sooner or later I need to finish that too, so I get that to the quilter! I hope she's ready for me!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


I had a bad night the night before, hardly any sleep at all. But I got a LOT of sewing done yesterday, more than I thought I could. All of the blocks for the summer mystery are done and I have four rows sewn together. I am thinking I might want to go a little bigger, maybe, so I might make more blocks… or I might make a neat border of some kind, decisions decisions…

As for the bass-ackwards quilt parts, they are what I am using for the quilt. The parts that are right for this mystery will be added to and sewn into a quilt also, one that matches the pattern. Maybe with luck I can finish that one by reveal time on Saturday, maybe. That requires some more cutting, sewing, pressing, sewing etc, and will depend on the shakes.

Some people might be frustrated by all these mistakes, not me. As someone once said, it isn’t a mistake, it’s a design opportunity. I have lots of those!

PS. Last night I slept. I went to bed at 9:30 and was up and down for nature calls a few times but managed to go right back to sleep, except around 3:30 when a thunder storm kept me awake a little, but not too long. I woke up with the alarm and even hit snooze a few times, going back to sleep after each interruption. It felt good to get an almost normal night’s sleep for a change.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Hazards of sewing when sleep deprived

I decided to check my pattern directions just to make sure I am sewing correctly, and that the directions are clear. I looked at my directions, then looked at my blocks. Looked at the directions, looked at the blocks. Something wasn’t right, but in my sleep deprived state, I just couldn’t put my finger on it. Perhaps it was my imagination?

I went back to sewing…. but I knew there was something wrong and I had to figure out what it was. Then I came to a rectangle.. it was backwards. Hold on… wait… it was NOT backwards, the rest of them are.

But wait, the blocks are coming out ok, how can they be backwards? So here I sit at the computer with a pile of finished blocks and a pile of parts and the pattern open… sure enough, I sewed the majority of the pieces bass-ackwards. BUT, know what, it really doesn’t matter.

Well it does and it doesn’t.

I designed this pattern to use up pieces from another quilt which I put together wrong. Then I went ahead and sewed the majority of this quilt right, for the OTHER quilt. But when the pieces are sewn together the blocks are close enough that only I and anyone who reads this will know I screwed up.

Maybe I shouldn’t post this?

I knew it

After my cell phone woke me up from my no-electricity induced nap yesterday I knew I’d have a bad night, which is usually followed by a bad day. Sure enough bedtime last night was delayed since I was wide awake and I didn’t hit the pillow until around midnight. However I was still WIDE awake at 1:15 so I got up and read some. Reading had put me to sleep when the electricity was out, but not last night. I went back to bed at 2:20 and there was a glow of daylight when I finally went to sleep. I was up at 7:35 for a call of nature and am still up.

But despite all that, I am getting some sewing done. Yesterday I got all my pressing done so today is sewing day. I have one row sewn together of the Summer Mystery blocks and I really love it. I might just have to make two of these quilts it is so cute!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Wasted time!

After I checked emails this AM, caught up on my blog reading, and was getting ready for my shower, the power went out. I waited a few minutes, and waited a few more. Then I called… they didn’t know what the problem was but had already sent people out to check. I hadn’t taken my medicine, so had to eat to take it, and couldn’t open the frig and let out all the cold air. So I made a peanut butter and banana sandwich and washed it down with water…

Then what to do… couldn’t iron, couldn’t sew, couldn’t shower, couldn’t do almost anything I wanted to do. So I got a book and started reading. Three hours later my cell phone rang and woke me up. I probably needed that three hours, but I also need it at night, and I had work to do, and I have no idea how long the power was out. (Not too long since the house was nice and cool)

So I started the day all over again, checked emails, caught up on my blog reading, took my shower, had my lunch and now am going to press all the 4 patches and Summer Mystery pieces, then I will sew… I hope!

Getting ready for the mystery

The summer mystery will start on Saturday morning about 9 AM eastern time. I will post the first clue and then post when I feel you are ready for them.

Before that starts, let me ask everyone is your machine ready? There is nothing more frustrating than starting a new project and having to stop because of machine issues.

So before Saturday why not give your machine the once over…
Dust out that bobbin area, clean up the lint and dust that has accumulated, something you should do after every project anyway.
Oil as needed, check your owner’s manual.
Put in a new needle, something else you should do often. If you are hearing the needle hit the fabric it is WAY past time to change it. Check this photo and then if you haven’t changed your needle recently, do so soon.
And wind bobbins. If you do it now, you will have more sewing time come Saturday!

Any questions, please ask!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Is there a pattern?

I’m trying to see if there is a pattern, not to a quilt, but to the life I’m leading recently. I have a good day, followed by a horrible night and a bad day by a good night. Is that the way it’s going to be? I sure hope not, this is getting tiring, in more ways than one. I had a good day Monday and barely slept a wink that night, had a shaky day on Tuesday. Tuesday night I slept great and Wednesday was less shaky but not wonderful. Wednesday night I slept like a baby and Thursday was a shaky day, Thursday night I slept and Friday was a shaky day, Friday night I slept but yesterday was a great day. No pattern I can see, but I’m going to start keeping track and see if I can figure this out.

So yesterday I had a great day. I finished most of my cutting. Most because I am waiting for an order of fabric to arrive… yes I had to buy. I want a nice dark but not black solid for my Super Duper Easy and I didn’t have one, so I bought. Not a problem as I see it, but a solution. I needed it, I plan to use it right away, so I bought it. I won’t say I bought two pieces since I couldn’t decide on line which color I wanted… I will use it up eventually… or maybe even as the backing to this quilt!

Once all the cutting was done I started sewing. I sewed together a whole bunch of 2 1/2 inch squares of Aunt Graces and most of Step Two for the Summer Mystery. When all the 2 1/2 inch Aunt Grace squares were gone I had to sew them together into four patches, so I could see how they look… perfect of course!

And since I had the four patches done I wanted to see a finished block for the Summer Mystery so I sewed a few of those together too… I love it!

And while I was at it, how about a few blocks of the other scrappy project, easily done, and I think that will look great too!

Last night I went to bed at 10 and was still wide awake at 11 so I got up and read till 1:45 and went back to bed and laid there for what seemed like forever wide awake. I was thinking of the third project, a way to add some spice to it… When the alarm went off I had a hard time getting up. I probably could have slept some more, but then I would probably have a hard time sleeping tonight, maybe, time will tell.