Monday, April 30, 2012

End of the month report

I did pretty good in April, started four brand new projects and actually finished five of my UFOs.  Best of all, I am ahead on my 2012 Projects, having made three samples for May’s project and even one for June’s. 

May’s project is Sailing Ships because I thought they would make cute little quilts for charity.  I’ve added simple finishing directions on the bottom of the blockpage.  I will show off the other two samples as soon as I get them quilted… I need batting and 505 before that will happen.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

And another finish

My World’s Fair baby quilt, all done and ready to be donated.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Relay Quilt

And no, it’s not mine!  Hard to believe that my pattern in my colors is raising money for Relay For Life and it’s not mine!  I got an email last night with a photo and a story that was just too good to be true, my November Stars is raising money for Relay all the way across this grand country of ours. 

I made a quilt from your November Stars pattern that will be raffled off this weekend at the Fontana, Ca. Relay for Life. I took some creative license by renaming it Stars of Hope. I hope this is ok with you. Attached are pictures of the quilt top (I am just now putting the binding on it) and the label that will be attached to the back. I am utility quilting it on the diagonal. Like you I want my quilts to be used every day and worn out if possible. Thank you so much for your inspiration.

I asked permission to share the photos and story and she replied.. 

Our team name is Jules Rules in honor of Julie Alvarez Fish. Julie was my daughter's sister-in-law. She was only 30 when we lost her to a rare form of intestinal cancer related to Celiac disease which she didn't know she had. She left 3 children (2 girls and a boy) and her devoted husband Danny who never left her side. She was not only a wonderful wife, mother and friend but also a beloved elementary school teacher.

I am glad you like the quilt. I was getting desperate to find a pattern that 'spoke' to me. When I saw November Stars on your website I knew my search was over. It is perfect. This is the second quilt I have made for the Relay. Last year's quilt made about $200 and I am hoping for that or more this year. I am also planning on using the pattern for at least one Quilt Of Valor. is my second love right after quilting! I will try to send you a picture of the quilt when it is finished.

Thank YOU Deanna!  Deanna’s Relay is tomorrow and I hope her lovely quilt raises a lot more than she anticipates. If you’d like to donate to Deanna, this is her Relay page. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Another almost finished

Today I did more hand work on my green Jacob’s Ladder and I am pretty sure it will be finished tonight.  I also got my baby World’s Fair quilted and the binding put on.  Now just the hand work.  Photos tomorrow, too wet to take them today.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Downs and ups….

Monday I lost a friend to cancer and today I got good news about two friends who are fighting it.  One friend who has been fighting for two years just got the all clear.  She told me “I have peach fuzz growing on my head and the doc said that I am clean and clear and don’t need to come back for six months.”

Another friend who is fighting what she thought could be two cancers just found out “my lung was not cancerous. Therefore my stomach cancer is curable by surgery, which I will get next month, praise God”

Yes, praise God for sure! 

Officially Finished!

Done, yippee! 

Another almost finished

Last night I got about 7/8 of the binding done on the Bow Tie #1.   Still have all the quilting ends to tie and burry. 

This morning I quilted my green Jacob’s Ladder and even got the binding on.  Now just the hand work on that one too. 

Making progress and quite proud of it!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Quilting report

Doing much better today and I’ve finished quilting one of the ABC Bow Tie quilts and even got the binding on except for the handwork. I have knots to tie and threads to burry and the binding to sew by hand and then I will have a finish.

And I am about to put the binding on my Wonky Squares and then will only have hand work to do on it. I really like the way it looks and think I might just have to do this one again. It makes for a quick and cute quilt.

I would be further along in my work except for one wee problem. Since I was low on 505 and used pins to baste and was too lazy to hand baste, there are lots of pins to fight with. And every time I stab myself enough to make a finger/hand/arm bleed I have to take a break till the bleeding stops.

Something weird happened today that has never happened before… I was sewing along and a pin flew up from somewhere and nearly poked me in the eye. I have no idea how it happened, but I have a wee stab under my eye to show for it… and get this, I wasn’t wearing my glasses. Normally I do when sewing on the machine, but I’d taken them off to read an email, and didn’t put them back on and didn’t really notice until that pin hit my face. I will wear them when sewing for now on, never thought of them as safety glasses but now I know they could be.

Weather permitting I will post at least one finished photo tomorrow… Wonky Squares still might be a mystery and or retreat project so I’m not sharing that photo yet!

Monday, April 23, 2012

When I'm down

Sometimes when I am down and just want to think, I go upstairs and sew, usually mindless sewing so my head can get itself straightened out.  Today I needed to do something to take my mind off of Jane’s passing and some other bad news which I learned about today… so I went upstairs and tackled one of the quilts I basted yesterday.  As I quilted straight lines I remembered the first time we chatted, she was waiting for the birth of her first grandchild.  While sewing around bow tie knots I remembered some of the funnies Jane shared with us about Miss Ruby, and I remembered more about visiting her in her darling little cottage.  It was good therapy, and although I am still very saddened by her passing, I am happy she is no longer suffering and that she’s in a better place.  I sure hope Heaven was ready for her!  Tomorrow has to be a better day. 

It gets personal

This morning I got up and did what I do every morning, checked email.  One email stuck out, from a dear friend I knew was fighting cancer with the subject Sad News.  I was afraid to open it and the many replies that followed it.  And even before I opened it I knew what it said. 

It was back in September or October 2010 when I first learned Jane had cancer.  She sent me a quick email asking me if I knew anyone who might be able to help her.  Of course I sent her the ACS help line number 800ACS2345.  It was really all I could do. 

I heard from her rarely after that, but sent her little reminders now and then that I was praying for her.  A few weeks ago she sent me another email that it was back and asked again if I knew anyone who could help.  She’s been in my prayers and in my heart since that day.  There wasn’t a day that went by that I didn’t think of her. 

I first “met” Jane on line in a chat group for quilters.  She was a lively chatter, always adding some fun and giggles to the conversations.  She would tell us about her charming DH or her resident ghost Miss Ruby.  When I learned she lived in Tennessee near friends I knew I had to meet her.  And we did the next time we went down to visit, meeting in a local restaurant for a lively gathering of chat friends. 

The last time we visited TN John and I stopped for a bite to eat off the highway and I realized we were in Jane’s neighborhood.  I gave her a call and was happy to find her home and get an invite to stop in for a visit.  Jane and her darling husband Ken greeted us with open arms and pulled us right into their little world.  Ken and John struck up a conversation about plants and we were soon given a guided tour of their garden and yard.  We learned where ever plant originated, and if it was blooming or not we were given a description of the flower and/or fruit that gave us a mental picture and or teasing taste of what was to come.  They walked around hand in hand just like newlyweds and the love and peace between them was so delightful to watch. 

As we drove north from Tennessee John said he said he hoped that we could be just like them when we got old, happy with the simple things our friends and family had given us and still so much in love with each other. 

Rest in peace Jane.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

What to do on a rainy Sunday

I don’t know what everyone else in the northeast did today, but I worked on some of my UFOs!  Yep, I did what I dislike doing the second most, I pin basted a few quilts.  First I basted a prototype for a future project.  It’s very nice, just not enough contrast for a true sample.  It will make a great baby quilt for charity though.

Then I did my reddish brown and yellow baby World’sFair.  I think it will be an easy quilt to do.  Next were the two 3D Bow Tie baby quilts, I can’t wait to see those finished.  All of those are for charity too. 

Next in line was the green Jacob’s Ladder from February’s project.  I plan to quilt it the same way I did the tie-dyed one because that looked so nice finished.  And finally I pin basted a quilt I’m calling wonky squares, for now at least.  It’s one I found on line and one I hope to use either as a retreat project or a mystery, or maybe even both. 

I was going to do my May project samples too, but I ran out of two things… 505 spray baste and pins.  I guess they will have to wait. 

So guess what I'll be doing this week.... what I dislike the most about quilting, and that's quilting itself.  But I need to finish something and that's the only way these projects are going to get done!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

A finish and a photo

I finished my little wall hanging for my chat friend on April 8th but wasn’t able to get it in the mail to her until this week.  Yesterday she finally got it so I can finally show a photo of the finished project.  I made mini baskets for AAQI and have made wall hangings similar to this, but never one all the same color.  She asked for red baskets so she got red baskets!  I’m so happy she likes it!


Friday, April 20, 2012

Finished what I started, almost

Yep, finally finished that quilt top I was working on and I am pleased with my results.  I have three different quilts all using the same BOM which will be the May project. 

I need to get myself motivated now and do some actual quilting, finishing some of these projects I’ve started.  I have at least nine, most likely more, little quilts I could quilt myself…

but I don’t want to…

I really don’t enjoy the quilting part, I just like the piecing part. 

But I really can’t give just tops to charity so I need to buckle down and get some quilting done….


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Been one of those days...

Ever had a day where you make more mistakes than usual?  Today was that day for me.  The project I’m working on has 3 1/2 and 3 7/8 inch squares of the same fabric.  Both sizes need to be marked in the center to sew on or use as guide for 1/4 inch.  Add to the confusion, the fabric is one of those that the right side and wrong side are almost alike, although if you use the wrong side for the right side it does show up in the block… ask me how I know.

SO… I’m marking those difficult similar squares, thinking I have everything under control.  Total of squares to be marked was 36.  Half way through I realized I was marking the right side which was wrong.  No problem, just turn them over and mark the wrong side which was right.  Except I was marking the 1/4 inch sewing line on the wrong size squares.  And since they are not to be sewn on the outer line, what I marked would show, so they were no good. 

Back to the cutting board and cut more squares, sit down, make sure they are on the wrong side and correctly mark them.  Or so I thought.  Wrong again. 

Regardless I got my nine blocks finished.  If I hadn’t had so much trouble I’d probably have the quilt top finished too…  Oh well, tomorrow is another day!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Win Me!

Up for raffle is this Longaberger Sewing Basket with a special lid and three tier insert.

For your chance to win make a donation at my Relay For Life web site. Each $5 donation gets you six chances to win.

I will confirm your donation and entry by a thank you email!

You may also enter by check made payable to American Cancer Society and mailed to me at my address below. 
Marge Gordon
31357 Kendale Road
Lewes, DE 19958

Winner will be drawn on Sunday November 11, 2012. If basket must be shipped winner will pay postage. It will be mailed via UPS. 

Good luck and thank you!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tax Day

Will someone tell me why I decided to go to the Post Office on Tax Day?  Yes, today April 17, 2012 is Tax Day for Tax Year 2011 - filing deadline and due date for Federal Income Tax Returns.  I guess I forgot about it because we filed back in February and have already spent our refund, not that there was much to spend. 

And it’s not the 15th either so it didn’t occur to me that there might be a line in the Post Office and that everyone would want a receipt.  The guy at the counter said I was one of less than a dozen people who were not mailing taxes.  When I told him we did ours in February, everyone groaned… guess I shouldn’t have said that? 

I had six packages to mail and two letters… you should have seen the dirty looks I got!

Monday, April 16, 2012


April 16 and it’s hot. 
Hot and dry, we’re under severe drought conditions. 
And it’s April still. 
I’m dreading summer already.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

In my garden today

My crab apple tree is in full bloom and I think this year it is fuller than it has ever been.

On the other hand the Red Bud is not quite a full this year has it has been in the past.I think that frost we had a week ago may have something to do with that. You might also see some of my lilacs, which are very full and pretty this year. 

And up against the foundation in the front garden are these almost black tulips.  Very tiny but  oh so beautiful.

Friday, April 13, 2012

What’s on YOUR Bed?

Bonnie wants to know what’s on my bed.  I don’t dare tell the truth, because right now it’s not a quilt.  With the polymyalgia rheumatica and now neck spasms I have an electric blanket on my bed.  It not only keeps me warm but it sooths my aching body. 

Normally there is a quilt on my bed and which one it is depends on the season. Our summer quilt is my Aunt Grace Broken Dishes. Made by me and quilted by Jackie, it’s one of my favorite quilts.
Our winter quilt was Quarter of a Court House but it was gifted to Jon and Steph at Christmas this year,

 so next winter we’ll go back to my 2003 Sampler next winter. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Sewing along... uh oh

I’m working on another sample for my 2012 Projects, sewing right along making progress. Then I happened to notice this…

I immediately stopped and started looking at what was going on. Somewhere, somehow, my sewing machine had started sewing funny. I checked everything carefully and sure enough it was not threaded correctly…. It had looped around causing the tension on top to be too tight and making the thread easy to pull out.

So I pulled them all out and started over again.

Monday, April 09, 2012

Been reading

Not what most people do on Easter weekend, but that’s what I did.  Two whole books.  It wasn’t easy either, with company coming and going.  Well not company really, but Mike and Kelly, who decided last minute to come over to meet a friend’s new baby, attend another friends house warming and even spend some time with us.  It was a nice visit, and we’re excited that the newlyweds are doing so well, hoping life continues to bless them with the happiness they have now. 

But, I started reading The Wedding Quilt sometime on Friday, and as always with any of the Elm Creek Quilts books, I had a hard time putting it down.  I loved how it combined so many of the other books, adding more and tying it all together.  I finished that sometime yesterday and started right into Sonoma Rose and again had a hard time putting it down.

My plans for today were to run a few errands, do laundry and finish a quilt project I’ve started….  this morning while waiting for a friend to come on line for our morning chat I started reading.  And I couldn’t stop…  and now it’s quarter to four and too late to run my errands and there’s a load of laundry waiting to  be folded. 

And now I have to wait for the next book to come out, and I have a feeling that will be a long wait.  But maybe I’ll get something else done in the meantime. 

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Saturday, April 07, 2012

How would this look scrappy?

Sometimes I wonder what would a certain pattern look like done scrappy.  Not all designs show up nicely when done scrappy, sometimes the scrappiness takes away from the design.  Today I was paging through Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting and found one of my quilt designs done scrappy. 

When I looked at the quilt photo at first I thought it looked familiar, then I looked closer and realized it was just like pattern I did back in 2003 called Tessellated Friendship Stars.    It was also mystery #1 on the Mysteries For Relay group, and I even think I’ve used that pattern as a retreat project. 

I’ve made several of Tessellated Friendship Stars quilts myself, but never scrappy because I didn’t think the pattern would show nicely as a scrappy quilt.  And I’ll be honest, I don’t 100% love the quilt in the magazine either, but I sure like it enough that I think I just might have to do one scrappy.  It will be much more controlled scrappy than the one in the magazine, but it will be scrappy for sure. 

Another quilt to add to my Want-To-Do list!

PS My quilt is called the Tessellated Friendship Stars.  Liz Porter calls hers the Milky Way, and you can find the pattern in the May/June 2012 issue of Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting on page 50. 

Thursday, April 05, 2012

March’s report and April’s project

I did pretty well in March, I made two more 3D Bowtie quilts, two samples of the April project, and one for May's project too. So I'm ahead in the samples, just behind in the quilting, way behind. I think I need to set aside a month for just quilting.
April's project is a very simple block which turns into an elegant quilt. The World's Fair block is time consuming though, a lot of four-patches to be made to make a quilt. I’ve made two samples, so I know how time consuming they can be, but I think it’s worth it!

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

He was so little

I know I’ve shared this photo before and I guarantee you I will share it again. But it is still my favorite photo of my three men together. Today is the day that 27 years ago Michael joined the family. Just three weeks old, so tiny and so precious. And he still is… well precious. Hardly tiny any more.
Love you Mike.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

I remember it like it was yesterday

27 years ago today we had a home inspection.  No the kind you have when you are buying a home, this was more important than that.  This home inspection was required by the state of Texas when you were adopting a child.  The agency had to confirm that you had running water and electricity.  That’s it, nothing else.  We could have lived in a shack with running water and electricity and passed the inspection. 

It had only been two months and nine days since we saw the baby on Wednesday’s Child that prompted us to call the agency.  We weren’t eligible for that baby but if we were interested in adopting they really wanted to meet with us.  So we went in and met with a counselor who told us that they were desperate for adoptive parents and if we were interested they wanted us to go through an accelerated adoption procedure. 

Sure we were interested, why not!  Jonathon was almost 2 1/2 and even he got to go through the adoption process.  We all had physicals, background checks, psychological tests, more background checks, more psychological tests and heavens knows what else.  All that was left was the home inspection. 

I remember the counselor telling me that it wasn’t a white glove inspection, she only had to see the running water and electricity.  But you know I cleaned, and if it had been a white glove inspection we would have passed with flying colors.  She came in and visited with us a little while then got up and left. 

A little while later she called and asked if we were ready.  I assured her we were ready, and she said “OK, then tomorrow you can come pick up your son”  I told her I wasn’t ready. 

Monday, April 02, 2012

Expletive deleted

Did you hear those wirty dords? I said them, yep, I’ll confess. I might say more so cover your ears. Why? Yesterday I measured the fabrics for a sample, I wanted to make it bigger. I found out I had enough for the backing and binding, but not for another row. So I put the borders on and set it aside.

Today I decided to put the backing together so I could wrap it up and put it in the To Be Quilted pile. I’m short. How and why, I dunno… but that’s when those wirty dords came out of my mouth. I should go wash it out with soap, but instead I’ll figure out how to make what I have work.. I have no choice.

That To Be Quilted pile is growing and growing.  I need to get some quilts finished and soon too.  Otherwise I’ll run out of storage space.  If I had only won the lottery I could have had them all quilted by now.  Guess you can’t win if you don’t buy chances though.. and I didn’t.