Monday, December 30, 2013

Making Kisses

This title reminds me of my daughter at about 3 years old. She would wiggle her lips around and then give a kiss... she had to make one first... She was a character right from the beginning. So in memory of my darling daughter we will make some kisses for the niece she will never know.

Start with a pattern you can get for free at:
QuiltMaker Magazine

Theirs is for 6" blocks and I made mine smaller and made up a Master sheet so I could make copies of it and save some paper.

 Cut your copies into single blades (1/2 of a kiss).

Start by choosing your colors and pinning on #1. (#2, 3 and 5 are background pieces. #1 and 4 are kiss parts.) I'm using pink or white for the kiss parts.
(Make sure the #1 piece is pretty side out on the unprinted side.)

Place the #2 piece, (green and white print) face up, and leaving enough seam allowance. Set your machine for small stitches. (On mine I use 15 stitches to the inch.) Now back stitch at beginning, sew along the line, then back stitch at the end of the seam. Easy-Peasy. 
 Seam sewn - trim seam allowance to 1/4". (I use a scissors - and eyeball it. It's much faster that way.)

 Then press the seam (to set your stitches) and flip the #2 piece and press again
Now trim off the strip of #2 fabric... Never trim until it is flipped.

 I make the two pieces at one time... it's faster that way.

Now the #3 piece. Sewn, seam allowance trimmed, pressed, flipped and pressed again. I usually put a pin in this tail (top left) but I didn't show that part on a picture.
 Now sewing on #4.  Here's that pin. .. to hold that tail from floppy around. 
When your two halves are done you can make hugs, or turn the pieces around and....

make a kiss.

 Here's our block on the design wall... just pinned - not yet sewn together. I might want to mix them up a bit before I sew.

(27 more blocks - 54 more blades to go)
The block just made is the lower left.
Linking up to Confessions of a Fabric Addict... see the sidebar for the location.
Next time I'll show my technique for sewing the blocks together.
Hugs, (and kisses)

Thursday, December 26, 2013

More XXXs

I need 9 X 9 to get a crib sort of size.... 81 blocks. Doesn't sound like much, but when it takes more than 10 minutes each - that's at top speed, which I just can't keep up -  Well, I figured I'd better get to the grind stone...... and yet a nap sounds so lovely.  We're still under the weather here. So not much sewing getting done.

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. We got a call from our son in Alaska, and got to talk to the whole family!  That was really special to us.  Thank you.

 Now on to New Year's!  Anybody making a Resolution List yet?  (I need new resolutions... seems the ones I usually go for are just not meant to happen. LOL)  What's your most unusual resolution?


Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas to you all!

A few Christmas greens from our garden.

 In amongst the cards...

An  arrangement at the kitchen window - see the little red roses that didn't freeze!!! and the red berries, too.

on the coffee table an arrangement of pine cones and greens...

and a vase of lavender and red leaves... smelled so good while handling.
Hope you are having a wonderful day ...

Friday, December 20, 2013

Very Little Progress

Before you check out my blog, go to see the video on Shanna's blog. You will enjoy this one!

We've been sicker than dogs here... both bad colds or maybe the flu. Not fun, and only the barest of minimums of work was done.  Lots of naps, if that counts. LOL   So I don't have much to show for a week's time. (I am feeling better today, finally.)

I'm thinking I should add some white on white Xes. What do you think?

Now for that CA scene:
This is a stile. I've read about them, but it always seemed like an old fashioned thing, or something from England. This is the first one I've ever seen. It's a method of getting past a fence without suffering from the barbs, or ruining the fence. I've always thought them a genius idea. Therefore I was thoroughly surprised to see one in CA. LOL (Most of CA has barbed wire on rolls above a barbed wire fence... with killer sharp barbs - meant to keep thieves away.)  This one is attached to the Aerodrome. It's a little patch of land with a  bathroom, a parking area and  a  paved runway  where the guys with remote controlled planes can practice. It's out on grazing lands so the noise won't bother the Yuppy ladies, and they don't have to worry that a crash will land on a kid. Genius.
It's so nice to have this remote area so close to home... (4-5 miles). We go for rides out there to see the cattle grazing and watch the horses and Meadow Larks. There is nothing like the song of the ML in the Spring to warm your heart. In the Spring and Summer there are wild flowers in profusion and there are occasionally coyote and burrowing owl ... It's one of my favorite places, but it won't last long. Developers are setting out stakes already....We've gotta sell and get out of here before they start digging. I couldn't bear to see that sacred place mutilated.  (But I guess my house stands where someone else experienced nature at her finest.... One of my curses is to see both sides of the question.
Here's hoping you all have a lovely weekend.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Xs for the baby quilt

Start of the new Granddaughter's quilt...  I'm linking up to "It's Tuesday" see the button on the right.

So far... I don't know if I like the florals. They seem too harsh for a baby quilt. What do you say?
Be back in a few days with some more blocks... We had to vacate for a bunch of would-be-buyers this weekend. Interest is picking up. One was a repeat!!! Keep your fingers crossed that they are buyers.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Starting a New Quilt - while the current one is still on the design wall

So what else is new? I'm starting a new quilt while the previous one is still on the design wall.  (You can't say you don't do this.... I've seen your blogs, and your UFOs.)  It'll spark my synapses to start something new, and maybe get this new quilt done on time (beginning of February - new granddaughter). Besides I'm having pink withdrawal symptoms... NEED PINK!

The pattern will be the same as her Grandpa's quilt seen here:

Of course, grandgirl's will be pink, yellow and lime green (my favorite combo) and only Xs and the pattern has been reduced to 1/2 the size... I was thinking hearts at first. Well, we will see.

Here's the pile of fabrics chosen and the pattern.

Here's the QoV on the design wall. I'm not removing that. See on the left where I've started adding the last of the blocks. The vacant blocks are white in position #1. I thought that would give it a finished look, but it seems a bit confusing... What do you think?   (As usual, the sewing room is cold, so I've plugged in the space heater again. Socket is right in the middle of the quilt! What were they thinking? 
Anyway, I'm linking up to A Creative Princess to show off some progress. I'll bet you all are tired of seeing this one. I'll have some baby blankie blocks for you in a couple of days.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Snow in CA and a Martian

Yes, Virginia, it does snow in California.... you just need to go where it is.  We traveled about 30 miles to get to it. We went for lunch to In and Out - a burger restaurant in Placerville and encountered snow falling.... We grew up with snow in Wisconsin, and miss it all these years (32) in CA.


Can you see the two taller hills off in the distance?    Nope - you cannot. While we sat and ate our lunch we watched them disappear behind the snow "storm" coming our way.

Too bad I'm not a better photographer... It's a Currier and Ives look, the snow on the limbs of that oak on the left.  The bushes on the left "under" the oak are Pyracantha - green leaves and red berries.
You can see some here.

And here is the hubby showing off some newly acquired flakes - not dandruff. (He's always been a little flaky, and this just proves it.)

So here's the Martian! He's on surveillance, checking me out from the other side of the hedge. (Actually he is probably a water pump from days gone by. CA has to move the water around to have it for agriculture. The location was grazing before it became the parting lot at Kaiser Permanente - Hubs is inside getting his meds filled.)
Really - doesn't he look like a robot watching me?
I've seen so many projects on the blogs that I'd like to make, but all my supplies are packed up. Still no offers on our house. Some have complained that we don't have granite counter tops and new appliances in the kitchen! (The pictures on the Internet are not that old. Why did you come to see the house if the kitchen isn't the one you want?)  I've lived here for 14 years with this stuff... you want granite, you buy granite. I think I'll put a sign on the counter that says I'm thinking of putting in purple counters... What color would you want? How would I know that? Why would I put in something that would be the wrong color?
Anyway, that's it for today. Still working on the R,W & Blue hexie quilt... a few sewn each day. I finished the center ones now, and making the opposite blocks now - white in the centers - for around the outside. Nothing spectacular. I'll show off on Friday.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

New Zip Code?

Not yet, but it seems this quilt should have one.

Some blocks that haven't been placed yet... (and a lovely shot of my waste basket).

Some blocks that haven't been finished yet... in that dazzling sunshine in the sewing room.

The top so far - probably similar to last weeks' photo... I think I added a row on the bottom and left since then... and I hunted up the space heater to plug into the design wall. Sewing room is a bit nippy these days.
Last of the garden roses, I picked last night just before they froze. And some of the lucky citrus - Grandson #1 says they are Mandarin Oranges... He should know, he lived most of his life in FL. 
(The trees were covered and 2 chicken coop lights put out on that side of the house to keep the fruit from freezing. The avocadoes were given similar treatment - they are really touchy to frosts.
And this beauty - a Hoya left over from Halloween. I should have thrown it, but just didn't have the heart to do it. Hope I can transport it successfully to the new abode, when the time comes. Maybe my Sis would like it.
Anyway, hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgivng!

Happy Thanksgiving Friends!  I'm thankful for each of you - and a lot of other things, too...

I'm especially thankful for my sight, and color!!!!
(I thought it was just the drab day that produced this picture...)

so I took a bunch more on a sunny day...

 The coloring is much better, but still not as red as in real life.  This little tree is just amazing, and like the Weeping Willow in Harry Potter, drops it's leaves all at once. Kind of comical. (It's a Chinese or Japanese Maple... I cannot remember which.)

I have made some more progress on the Red, White and Blue.  NEED. MORE. BLOCKS!  Then we will have a double row of white centers around the outside - probably no border...

And another close-up.
So have a good time with your guests, and save room for dessert!
Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

More Paper Pieced Hexies aaaaand

I've made a bunch more... I'm going to have to open some boxes or go shopping soon. I really don't like the same ones to show up this often. I am liking it so far.

I plan a one inch white strip between the rows.

 I'm using white on white prints for the white... Genius, don't you think so? It's something extra to discover.
Thanks to Cheryl, I got mine!  Harry Potter postage stamps! We got two sets - one to share and one to keep.  They just came out, so get yours soon.
If I don't post before, have a wonderful weekend!


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The Grandboy and Fall plants

Hello again....
Saturday we traveled a couple hundred miles to have lunch an play with our newest Grandguy who is just over a year old.

He loves his Hobby Cow - especially when it's powered by Daddy.

 Couldn't you just eat him up?  So handsome.

This is the "little" Japanese Maple that we bought for $1.49 and it was about 5" tall. After about 12 years it's probably 12' tall.

 These are some of our bag dwellers. Goldfinches love these Niger seeds...

But they wouldn't stand for my camera at the window, so we had to trick them.

We tried really hard to get you some good pictures of the white Christmas cactus blooming.  3 flowers this year (one is on the other side).

Fabric comes in handy for many uses.  (This plant  is very dear to me. My daughter gave me a cutting of hers - a gift from her hubby.  She killed hers and I made her another, when that one died, I made her a second one. So this one is still not very big, but it makes angel-like blooms, don't you think so?)

I have made a few more  hexie red, white and blue blocks, but they aren't on the wall at the moment. Come back next time and I promise some quilty pictures.