Wednesday, February 29, 2012

FINISHES

ARE OVER-RATED...

This past weekend was going to be a time of FINISHES.  One big quilt and several little quilts are close - but then I got this new book in the morning mail.  So, that necessitated an hour or so with a cup of coffee, and then a trip to the LQS to get supplies for a project that caught my eye....you know how this goes - ..

So -  a few hours (well, more than a few), and now I have this:




Isn't this cool??  As you can see, it's not all cut away yet - that cutting away part takes a LONG long time, it seems...












Here's a close up.     I really like the pattern.  I haven't picked out the fabric it will go on yet... stay tuned...





and George says hi - he continues to be improving a little every day...  he is still very thin, but is eating a lot more, and is getting some of his old  grumpyness personality  back.  We just enjoy every day... sometimes he even eats cat food, but his preference is tilapia, with a sprinkling of olive oil, lightly salted and cooked in the microwave for just a minute.  We're working on convincing him that cat food is good, too! 


Happy Quilting - three days to another weekend!!!

Kate





 

Saturday, February 25, 2012

QUILTING vs XANAX

Let's compare:

XANAX:  can be used to control anxiety
XANAX:  is not tolerated by everyone
XANAX:  can be addictive

QUILTING:  can be used to control anxiety
QUILTING:  is not something everyone can do
QUILTING:  can be addictive

hmmmmmmmmm  perhaps the difference is in DOSAGE - so , then...

how MUCH Quilting equals ONE xanax????

Well, yesterday I was off the chart due to some life stress that I'll just leave out of this blog...

So - today I set about quilting down my anxiety.................

First, I machine quilted on this New Year's Eve Mystery Quilt...

 I decided to use little circles from the fabric pattern - and use a contrasting bobbin thread so the quilting showed on the back   (nuts)...
 Five hours later, it is starting to take shape, and my anxiety is much lessened...
 So, I took THIS old friend off the shelf, and began to machine quilt it - mostly just some ditch work...this will take forever...
 Then I made some blocks...
 and some cute little four-patches - all from a Color Challenge scrap bag from the Sunshine Yahoo Guild...
 And made some square in square units for a Christmas gift quilt...
I have decided the soothing thing about sewing is the sound of the machine -

SO - HOW MUCH QUILTING EQUALS ONE XANAX???

FOUR HOURS.... I proclaim it so...

I feel much better now... 

Happy Quilting,

Kate

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Diane Gaudynski said "make feathers" !!

What a great quilty Sunday I have had - and watched a great disaster movie, too - called "Contagion" - for the life of me I don't know why I like disaster movies so much, but I do... this one was great - lots of people dying, threat to civilization, you know.  Great stuff!

So today I sat down and made my first attempt at feathers, as per the Freemotion quilting challenge.  I had my very real doubts... seemed to me that echoed feathers free-handed were just too difficult for month two of that challenge -  but, Diane Gaudynski seemed to think we could do it - so off I went...

 I made feathers!!!!  They are a long way from perfect - but now I know the basic idea, I can just practice them on some charity quilts until I get better - thank you, Diane Gaudynski!!

I finished up this little charity quilt - for the Sunshine Yahoo Guild - someone else made the top..

And now I'm going to settle down for the evening with the Gigantic Hexagon quilt... 

Give more days and there will be another weekend - hooray!

Kate

Saturday, February 18, 2012

A Whale of a Quilt!!

yippee,,, hooray,,,, doin the happy dance...  finished my Orca Bay top today !!!!

I do love it - when I get it quilted I want to hang it up and get a better photo, but this is all I can do for the moment....  I think I'll just leave it on the living room floor for a while - it makes a nice rug, doesn't it??

And I finished up a little charity baby quilt - all made from the basket of scraps that I try not to let overflow...  but it still does!!


What a great day - -  wish I could finish something every Saturday...

Happy Quilting,

Kate



Friday, February 17, 2012

In the Depths of Your Stash...

What lies in the deepest area of your stash???? 

For me, it's several boxes of denim................ lots and lots and lots of denim...

Six years ago, Cone Mills in North Carolina donated 20 plus boxes of denim to the Project Linus group in Greensboro, NC.

Being an overachiever, I took four gigantic , HEAVY boxes of denim.   It was mostly jeans legs, which I learned Cone uses as sales samples of various shades of denim... who knew!!  Most had been prewashed, and was nice and soft - perfect for picnic or teen quilts...  I've gotten real good at 'hybrids' - part cotton, part denim - snuggy, warm, but not too heavy.

One box, though , was denim yardage - heavy duty stuff... not good for quilts unless it was washed many times... so I shut it up and put it DEEP IN THE CLOSET.

Then we moved to New York - opened the box - shut it up, and put it DEEP IN THE CLOSET.

Then we moved to California - opened the box - shut it up, and put it DEEP IN THE GARAGE.

Well - a few weeks ago I decided enough already - and put it on Freecycle...

Enter my neighbor Barbara!!!!  She claimed it , and her wonderful group of friends made these:


They are denim tote bags - for laundry, or clothes, or "stuff".. 

It turns out that foster children often have to move from home to home, and they have to take what they own in a trash bag............a trash bag...........makes me shudder , to think what that does to their self-esteem, to have only a trash bag to put your possessions in.

Well, now 24 foster children have a study, denim bag with a lovely drawstring, for their "stuff"..
These women are fabulous.... and thank you, Cone Mills...

til tomorrow, when I have a Quilty Finish to share;;;

Kate











Monday, February 13, 2012

oh my, what have I done??????

Do you volunteer to do work for your Quilt Guild?  Or are you a 'sit in the back' type????

I'm usually one of those people who is always at the center of everything - volunteering, working, running the place. 

But when we moved to California 18 months ago, I took advantage of the opportunity to choose a back-row chair at my Guild, and I have rather enjoyed just being an attendee - making some charity quilts, yes, but not helping 'run the place'. 

Well, yesterday they announced new positions for volunteers, and a special need for someone to pick up an unfinished term as Program Chair...  and before I knew what my arm was doing, it had shot up and I had volunteered....

The pros:  I will get to know the leaders of this great big guild...  (both good and bad, cause now I won't be anonymous);   and I will get to meet our visiting quilter speakers each month and make sure they have everything they need for their presentation!

More pros:  there are so many jobs I really don't want to do - quilt show chairman (oh lord save me);  quilt retreat chair (i'm hiding under the table at the thought)... quilt book librarian (my back aches at the idea)........

The speakers have already been chosen by the person who was originally doing the job -  all I have to do is host them - be sure they are picked up at the airport, delivered to the hotel, fed, etc.  And be sure their AV works...  and their quilts get nicely hung up.  And introduce them - that part will be the most fun.  

So - I know I really don't have time to do this - but I am going to do it anyway!!!!  It's only for one year, since it's an unfinished term.   12 speakers, one each month.

Hmmm - cons - well, there's only one:  it will chip into my sewing time...

guess I will just have to sleep a little less............

sleep is overrated anyway.

Kate









Sunday, February 12, 2012

A Happy Quilty Sunday

I love weekends...  I keep wondering if weekends are what retirement will be like - wonderful, precious stolen days to do whatever...................  for now I just get Saturday and Sunday, so try to make the most of them...

A little charity quilt got bound and finished - for the Sunshine Yahoo Guild - someone else made the blocks.
 
Some February lotto blocks were made , also for the Sunshine Yahoo Guild. 

 And then I tore into my thread - this is one of several bins and drawers full of thread, much of it with loose ends, threatening to become a jumbled mess - and I could never find anything...
 DH volunteered to sort out thread - he had a lot of fun!!

 Voila - have you seen these new thread storage containers??? I got them from Connecting Threads - they are double-deckers - open from either side...hold 48 spools each...  of course, I discovered that I needed a few more containers.................... stay tuned!!!!
Now I'm back to working on Bonnie Hunter's Orca Bay...  I'm just putting the last borders on -  so hopefully I will have a finished Orca Bay to show you soon...  but I want to watch the Grammys, so may not finish that tonight...

Happy Quilting,


Kate

I Got a Logo !!!!

Wowee - the Quilting Professor blogspot now has a logo, and a banner heading, and soon other toys as well!

Why, this step alone means my quilts will all magically complete themselves, and win national awards!!  And my teaching will be inspired and my students will sew perfect quarter inch seams.

I love, love , love it... and I have a couple of versions featuring different quilts..;.
and yes, that's my quilt in the photo...

So very cool, I love it.

Thanks to Michael Nolasco of Nolasco Designs - whose fabulous work is available on ETSY...  the place where creative people hang out...

Happy Quilting,

Kate











Saturday, February 11, 2012

Kitty George's Amazing Recovery !!!!

Oh, I did not think I would get to write this post.  Two months ago, I really thought the next post about kitty George would be a Farewell post.  He is 17 1/2, and had been sick for the past year.  Just not eating, losing weight.  the vet wanted to take MRI , but said if it was an intestinal cancer-type disease, there would be nothing to be done - so we just decided to pamper him and take the time we had...He just kept eating less and less , until about a month ago we thought it was time to say good-bye.

Then, because he was so sick, I stopped giving him some medicine he has taken for years to control his  recurrent upper respiratory infections - it seemed pointless to worry about that when he only had a few days left... at night we wondered if he would be with us in the morning.  

And DH fed him baby food from a spoon, but he seemed comfortable... and he kept eating baby food from a spoon, three times a day...  and then one day he ate a little bit of fish...
and the next day he ate a little bit of chicken....

For a couple of weeks we would offer him different foods, flavors of cat food - usually he would eat three bites, and stop - we threw away so much cat food... but gradually three bites became four or five or six...

And now he is eating everything in sight - yesterday he ate two cans of cat food, some dry kibble, plus a human -sized serving of tilapia I made especially for him with a little olive oil ...

Oh boy, is he ever spoiled - now he just goes in the kitchen , sits there and hollers until we come in and say "George, what would you like to eat?  chicken, fish, kibble, cat food??? "  We thought of printing a menu for him...

I think that medicine was making him nauseous - I have no idea why he used to be able to take it and now he can't - but, I'm sure not giving him any more...  and he has started to gain some weight back, too - he was all skin and bones ...

oh - got to run for a moment - he is in the kitchen, hollering!!!!  Chicken, steak, or fish?????

A happy day at my house... later we will redirect him from people food to cat food - yes, we will. 

I close with some great shots of George, over the years,  doing what he likes best - sunning, sleeping, snuggling with his ma, sitting by the fireplace...  all in all, a great life for a spoiled kitty!

Snuggle those you love - human or animal!
Kate







Thursday, February 9, 2012

Ya Gotta Love This

Can you imagine - you and your hubby are lost in the woods without food, water or shelter for days?

Your family is in danger...

Then you are rescued - and the internet world is so happy you are safe, and they put this old photo, which they used for the search to find you, up on tv, on the web, everywhere...........

and your hubby is wearing a shirt that............ well,  look close.............

 
I DON'T THINK THOSE SKELETONS ARE PLAYING PIGGY-BACK!!!

yes, these are the lost mushroom-hunters...  and I'm going right upstairs to make sure my dh doesn't have a shirt like that....

Kate










Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Shout it Out

Good morning, everyone - my post today is a SHOUT-OUT.  It's a shout-out for all of us, really, who make charity quilts

*  for people we've never met and never will;
*  for no gain or advantage to ourselves;
*  with no assurance that they will ever understand the time we took to make sharp points, or use 100% cotton, or  quilt on some kind of feather design;

I am mailing these blocks to Sarah, who blogs at Confessionsofafabricaddict.blogspot.com.  She runs a church-based quilt group who makes and donates these fabulously beautiful quilts, and she ran a little block linky today to show the blocks some of us are donating to her program... Stop by and view the eye candy... or heck, you can probably still send a block!!

Hooray for all the great generosity in the quilting world!

Kate

















Sunday, February 5, 2012

Off to a Sputtering Start

It's early Sunday morning here in California - it's a bit nippy and I'm snuggled up until the house warms up and the coffee kicks in...

My petunias started blooming - so spring can't be far away - I bought these two summers ago - wonder how the nurseries stay in business when simple petunias survive the winters and don't need to be purchased each summer?  I'm still amazed at this climate...

 I finished the quilting and binding on this little charity quilt for the sunshine Yahoo Guild - someone else made the top - I volunteered to quilt up a big stack of these tops, and am gradually working through them - somehow it didn't go as quickly as I had imagined - lol!!
 And I played with these tiny 2.5 inch pinwheels that were made from bonus triangles... here they are all trimmed up and ready to - - what???  I really don't know - but at some point I am sure they will volunteer for something!
 Georgie says hello -  some of you wrote lovely notes when I posted that he was in kitty hospice.  He is nearly 18...  he stopped eating and lost a lot of weight.. (this is an earlier photo) and we thought he would be gone within days - then my DH started hand-feeding him baby food - and he is improving every day - today he gobbled down his catfood after hollering at me to feed him before I could even have coffee!  So, he's enjoying every day - today is a great day for kitties - hours of SuperBowl lap from Daddy!!

I have the whole day to sew, but can't get started.  I want to do the SuperBowl Mystery on the web at quiltbug.com... I have the fabric out to start... perhaps going in the sewing room would be a good start..  I NEED to finish up my Bonnie Hunter mystery - just working through those pieced borders and then the top will be complete. 

Of course, I could work on one of the other umpteen things that are already in progress! - -  hmm, wonder what will win my attention.............. maybe just another cup of coffee.....

oh - I just remembered a 'super bolt' sale at the LQS.... now that seems interesting to me!

Happy SuperBowl Quilting to you all,

Kate







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