27 October 2009

9 days ?!?

(My friend, the flicker, comes to tweet at me and eat the suet. Bad picture...but I can't get too close or he'll fly away. Hmm, actually, I guess that's a girl, she doesn't have a ruby cheek...)

Could there really only be 9 days until the convention? What about the weight I meant to lose? What about getting my glasses fixed? I'd wanted a new outfit!

I'm... not... even... in... paper mode... yet!!!!!!

Ahhh, calming breath... Yes, the time is creeping up on me and I'm in no way prepared. In fact, I've been, very literally, day-dreaming the last few days away... And no, I wasn't dreaming of paper.

But (was it last week?) I was very productive. Very productive indeed!

First let's talk about kits... That mini table runner I made a bit ago was a (mostly)pre-cut kit and pattern made up by a shop. They had me attach 2" strips round a 4" square. That leaves me with a 7" unfinished block...you with me? Then they had me trim it down to 5 1/8"! 5 1/8! You can't, without some kind of quilting ruler I've not heard of, neatly and evenly trim 7" down to 5 1/8" without either winging it, or having one side with an extra 1/8". Why have me waste almost 2" of fabric??? Why the extra 1/8? Okay, so I do that. Then they want you to cut them wonky...
But wait, 2 1/2" off of 5 1/8" only leaves 2 5/8. That's not wonky enough! In fact, it's just enough to make it look like the person sewing it wasn't very good at matching up seams!
It certainly doesn't look like their pictures...For a moment there I thought maybe one of the numbers was just wrong, but no, when I went to attach their pre-cut, correctly (to their directions) measured triangles, they fit! Amazing...

Then we come to our second kit. Another pre-cut one. I do love convenience...but what's this? Not enough of some, too many of others, and all sorts of inaccurate cutting! I had to use some squares that were a good 1/8" off, because otherwise I wouldn't have enough to complete the thing!(The top are rectangles, not squares. The bottom are extras.)

I say please...if you're going to offer a kit, make sure you cut correctly, and have someone check your pattern!

I did get two more little somethings finished all the same... The doomed by poor cutting, mini table topper...
And a cheery little halloween pillow cover, for which I have an improperly sized cushion. But I think it looks nice anyway...OOO! I just realized that I haven't received my convention tickets in the mail yet! I'd better check on that! :(

25 October 2009

Sunday Stash #1

Number 1...how exciting! I saw a few Sunday Stash posts over at Red Pepper Quilts and thought it was a neat idea. Then I noticed she had a button on her sidebar which led me to 1/4 of an inch. I love to share my stash, so I've decided to join in the fun!

Now as I've mentioned multiple times now, my stash is in bins, and so to get anything I have to dig (usually to the bottom) to find things. But in doing so I've found some really cute stuff! I'm a very lucky lady...

Here is a little fat quarter pack that I barely remember buying...What a smart shop to put together such an irresistible little bundle of goodness...

Go on over to Tam's blog...there's a list of the other Sunday Stashes, and check out some of her blocks! Nice!

24 October 2009

Just a quickie...

I needed to let you know (not just because I can get another entry, but because the shop is so darn awesome), that There's a giveaway at the Sweet Tidings blog, and you can win something from Holland Fabric House. I think you'll all love, love, love that shop. But please...don't buy too much. Save some for me! :)

I'll be back tomorrow with my first ever Sunday Stash! (If I can remember, that is...)

21 October 2009

18 days...

(it was foggy yesterday... couldn't even see the lake.)

In 18 short days, I will be at the Creating Keepsakes Convention!* I can't believe it's so close! This year Bean, my mom, is going with me. Ooo, it'll be horribly fun with a buddy!

Last year jj surprised me with a hotel room for the duration of the event. We only live ~30 minutes away, but he wanted me to have a proper break.** I assumed he'd be up for that this year, but somehow he 'forgot' that he did that for me, and 'forgot' all the spending money he gave me as well. How convenient... So this year I 'earned' some of it. I did little things for his business, and I forget what else...maybe that was it??? Let's see if he'll remember telling me (only 2 months ago) that he was going to match whatever I saved. Saving money is not my thing...at all.

I find it hard to have so many interests. I don't have that much time for my own things, so I find actively engaging in all crafts at once almost impossible. (I do hope that when my craft room is finished it'll be easier to have multiple things going on at once. A table for each craft...that should work.) Right now I'm in full-on fabric mode. Although I must say I've been crocheting while waiting for my boy at school. Oh, and I bought some bead stuff...but that was Bean's fault! 0:)

So anyway, I'm going to be in full-on scrapbook/card-making mode here soon. I do so love to make cards. I love rubber stamps (haven't done that in forever!), sparkly glitters, bling, patterned papers....Oh boy, do I love patterned paper! Although half the time I wish the paper was fabric instead. (Have you noticed that a lot of the paper patterns are indeed becoming fabrics?)

I will certainly share my convention purchases! Maybe I'll even tell you what classes we're taking at some point. Share the fun, I say!

So yesterday I almost completed yet another small something! But when I went to quilt it, my top thread wasn't coming out nicely, and sometimes it broke. I thought at first that something was wrong with my machine, but I'm thinking maybe it's just the tension. You see, I use Aurifil almost exclusively, for both piecing and quilting and almost never have to adjust my tension. But I put a thicker Superior King Tut*** thread in this time, so maybe I have to. Wish me luck on that! I'll share when I have it all finished...hopefully tomorrow.

Oh yes, I finished my Attic24 bag as well! No more granny undies! I haven't affixed the handles, but I think I like it better as a 'basket.' Hmm, maybe it'll be a handled basket though??? We'll see...I didn't have the directions with me when I did this last scalloped row, so I played with it a little. It's a *sl st, sc, 2dc, 2tc, a quadruple crochet, 2tc, 2dc, 1sc* repeat. Yes, I wrapped the yarn 3 times to make a quadruple. Why not, right? I mean, you could go on and on... for all I know this is commonplace, but I've not seen or done it before. Unfortunately, though lovely, this yarn de-plied (is that a word?) a lot, making it a little difficult.
I'm glad that at least some of you don't mind my rambling on because it's happening again!

I saw a post about some lovely summer flowers over at Vanessa's blog (I love her blog!) I am going to miss the summer color, but my sweet little plants haven't given up on me yet! I took these pics yesterday...

Look at my miniature roses! New buds, after a few frosts even!
(Love the dew on these)
Primroses have got to be one of the hardiest plants...This is the third bloom for those snapdragons! I'm definitely doing more annuals next year! Annuals and veggies!
I love the color on the trees. This is no Vermont, that's for sure, but I'll take what I can get!
(This is so much brighter in person...)
And finally some cabbage roses. Literally! This is the bottom cut of a baby bok choy (left) and nappa cabbage. Cute, eh?
Hope you're having a most wonderful week!

* Don't be fooled, it's not in Seattle, it's in Bellevue. Seattle is a more marketable name, I suppose.
**Isn't he sweet? Honestly, he's an incredible gift giver. He hates getting gifts, but the ones he gets for me are so thoughtful, in a tear-jerking way. I'm so very lucky and spoiled...rotten.
*** It's way happier and brighter in person.

19 October 2009

Such a Happy Girl...

(The lake at sunset)

For some reason, this afternoon, I am indeed a happy girl! Maybe it's caffeine. I get uber hyper when I have caffeine--and oftentimes, when hyper, I get happy.

I'm currently browsing my favorite digital scrapbooking stores. Like many other things, I'm rather addicted to buying, and rarely using, digi-scrapping kits. I'm just not a productive sort of gal, I'm afraid. I see some of these excellent bloggers who are constantly creating (and actually finishing) so many wonderful things. Why can't I? Maybe when the craft room of my dreams is complete, I will. Okay, who are we kidding...

But alas, I did complete something this weekend. Yes, it's a 7" x 24" something, but I chose it because sometimes a gal needs to feel that sense of accomplishment before she starts feeling completely disappointed in herself, you know? I was rummaging through my stash (which is in bins due to the construction) to find pieces to add to the yummy collection of fabrics I bought from Beata. She is so inspiring, and her blog is so lovely... Anyway, I found a little kit I'd bought during a shop hop 2 years ago. Here it is, my mini table runner...
Love that green, and the pink, and the yellow...okay, all of it!

Let's see, what else have I been up to?

I bought a new iron this weekend. I happened to have a Macy's gift card that I couldn't seem to spend. I wasn't going to buy clothes, and the kitchen gadgets just weren't appealing to me, so I got something I really needed...for free! :)Goodbye old iron. Sorry I didn't follow your cleaning directions and burnt polyester rick-rack all over you...
I also bought a new board cover as the old one was so stained and stiff. Didn't take a pic...too ugly and gross. But I have to ask, where are all the cute covers? I want a pink or red floral cover...give me some roses, or at least some color! I actually considered the naked covers where the undies disappear with heat...briefly (pun). But although it would be a laugh, do I really want to see that? NO! (I forget which quilt shop sells them...hence no link)We also went to Shipwreck beads. I thought I'd make some halloween beaded goodies to sell at Etsy, but I'll never finish them in time... But I'll still make them and either hold on to them for next year, or hope some goth-loving person is shopping! :) Anyhoo, the street leading there is lined with lovely trees...it's so horribly peaceful there, as it's in a business complex. We always go for a little walk... The area is called Hawk's Prairie. And indeed, we've spotted hawks.(pic from a moving car, hence the blur. I didn't realize I had my camera until after we left, which really stinks because I used my phone to take pics of the kids in the leaves.)

Hmm...I also did some sanding. I bought this table for a mere $40 and I'm going to paint it either white or a nice minty/seafoam green. Such fun!
My boy's school had a box-tops contest. The class with the most gets a pizza party or something like that. I've been saving all summer so our contribution was 187 box-tops and 45 labels. Not bad.
Okay...from this post forward I am going to try to be more organized. All my posts seem to be huge and miscellaneous. Wish me luck!

08 October 2009

An off sort of day...

It's not that there haven't been some stellar moments in my day. Cathy blogged about me! I've never been blogged about! :) But I'm just out of sorts again. I think it's yet another form of procrastination. I am the master of such... I really need to tidy up a bit in my craft room as verizon is coming to fix my internet. And I also want to get the majority of the cutting done for Saturday. That'll save my wrist a bit, not to mention time.

Tomorrow should be an odd day. My boy has a birthday party to go to, and then the whole verizon thing. I'm hoping it won't be yet another 'off' day, causing me not to want to go on Saturday. That happens you know...

This little guy has been sitting on our patio all day...I don't think he's well at all. :( That is one of my least favorite parts of fall (though I do love it so...). I hate to say goodbye to all my spider and insect friends (and some of the birds too). Although it makes spring all the more wonderful, because they all come back again...
Goodbye sweet friend...
Geez loweez! Let's perk this post up a bit, shall we?

How about a suggestive pumpkin? Hmm...Or how about this jar of sauce I opened and labeled in September... This past weekend we, a) bought a reddish pumpkin (first one in pic) and harvested my boy's garden o' pumpions. We 'harvested' 8 (and they're perfect except for that one) with more on the way!
^Yes, that is a trash can!
The day after we had a most excellent drive, we went to buy our pumpkin, hay, and corn stalks at a place on the same route. The first day we were driving leisurely, so we pulled over to let not-so-leisurely drivers pass. We stopped by a line of feeding cows and every single one of them looked at us. It was the cutest thing. Sadly, the second day, when I had my camera, there weren't half as many, and they didn't all look. But you get the idea...
Funny, as I was cropping that pic I saw the reflection in the mirror. I'd forgotten we took jj's truck. You can see the tops of the corn stalks we bought too...Hope you have a wonderful Friday!

06 October 2009

Opinions please...and Part 3

Hello there! How's your day been? I've actually had a rather happy day so far. The sun was shining for a while, the lake was calm and peaceful, all was well...

I finished one of the blocks for that Double Dutch quilt. I'm so slow...

I think the solid is going to work out fine, but I'd really like your opinion... First the facts: 1) using the solid would save me $45, and 2) there'd be no directional fabric to deal with. Do you think it works? Honestly... I did the yellow first, because I think that'd be the most bland of the blocks.I posted this picture earlier today, but there's more to it... I actually trimmed these squares! That's a first for me. Usually I just leave them wonky and fudge the seams... I have to say it was much nicer this way, although my back is suffering a bit...So I told you I'd share the rest of my delicious fabric and some flowers today, and so I shall...

And yes, I pressed them for you!

I really think I need lots of this. Unfortunately that particular shop was out of the yardage. It be nice for some new curtains in my bedroom. I like the ones I have currently, but I could change them as I please.I think that top fabric would be nice for some laundry room curtains, don't you think?And here is some adorable matryoshka fabric. They're about 5" tall. Nice, eh?
Here are some close up. I love the little aprons, and the tied kerchiefs... I especially like the kerchief on the red one...This spring, on our way to school, I saw a lady planting this big ol' garden. And now she's selling her plants and veggies! I got 13 dahlia stems for only $1! Sadly, they're not lasting very long, but maybe that's the nature of the dahlia. When I grew them last year I didn't cut any for some reason, so I wouldn't know...
I thought this was funny. The other day I was getting out of the car and I saw this... I don't know if it was an accident, or if my girl thought the pumpkin was hurt...