Tuesday, May 31, 2016

....and now we wait....

Little Minnie is getting close to having her puppies.

My bet was for today....but I think she could wait another day now. She has started to make herself familiar with the whelping box we've prepared and her appetite is down a bit.

Cooper stays close, seeming to realise finally that something is going on!
If she's waited this long, I now kinda hope she gives me another day so I can finish this quilt in time for it to hang in Quilt Junction's booth at the upcoming quilt show this weekend being held at the Ancaster Fairgrounds.
The fabrics are beautiful. The background fabric is a linen/cotton blend...something different! I also have the opportunity on this quilt to try the new technique I learned in longarm classes with Bethanne Nemesh

The technique is named after Bethanne....Nemeshing.
A little scary trying something new, but fun at the same time!

This quilt comes after another custom-quilted quilt. I think I have four of the Haldimand Guild's BOM quilts to do and this is the first one...

Such a pretty quilt!

I'd better get back at it....have a wonderful day!

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Quilt show season!

What a nice few days we've had! The weather has certainly helped the plants and trees pop in the last week or so.

It was two weeks ago today that I was driving home from the Simcoe area and drove through a little snow flurry....now we're into the temperature feeling like the mid-30's!

It's so nice to go out in the garden each morning and see what's new. I think my favourite, at least this time of year, is my Snowball bush...although now that I see it in a photograph, it seems I'll need to try shaping it a bit after it's finished blooming.

I'm worried about the Limelight Hydrangea that I planted last Spring. No sign of life yet, even though when I scratch the bark there is a bit of green. I had high hopes for that one.

On Saturday we attended a quilt show in Dunnville. They certainly had a lot of quilts to show. Now I'm feeling like a bad blogger since I didn't even think to take pictures :(

I think it's the first time I've left a quilt show empty-handed! Must be because I was feeling a little under the weather, but it was nice to window shop.

I always think that it's nice to come away with one inspiration at a quilt show, be it colour or design or what-have-you.

I happened to be inspired by a quilt that is very much like one I've had on the go. My project is a neutral block exchange. The blocks are 5" unfinished and we are nearing the end of the exchange. We will have almost 400 of these when we are done!

Here are a few...
At the quilt show, there was a similar one but made of all Kaffe Fassett fabrics. It was glorious! Geez, I wish I had thought to take a picture!

I've made up a block to remind myself of the quilt...
I'll have to take care with the values of the fabrics I choose, as this one seems to be a bit too blendy between the centre and the first row. Value has been a problem for me in many of my quilts.

I don't have a huge stash of Fassett, but I think any bright will be ok for my version....especially my yummy TulaPink fabrics!

I have started with a 2" centre and added three rows that are cut 1" wide.

I remember when I first started the neutral exchange I made a few coloured ones out of speculation. I did like them, so I'm not surprised that this particular quilt caught my eye.

I'll have to think of a name for this quilt....any suggestions are most welcome!!!

I've been trying this week to catch up a bit with of my Quilty365/Year in My Life. I really like this one...

...and these, too.....
These are some pretty jolly hearts! The pink "heart" heart is actually from a fabric that I had but I don't think I have it anymore. I begged this scrap from a friend. The one with the white house was gifted from a friend...I wish I had a couple yards of that one!

I am linking up with SoScrappy for ScrapHappySaturday to see what others are doing with the scraps in their stash and with Kathy over at Kathy's Quilts  to catch up on what others are stitching on today. I'm also linking up with Cynthia over at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework for Oh, Scrap!

My lawn is in dire need of mowing so I think I'll get at it after breakfast before it gets too hot again. After that, I think I may take some applique outside and take it easy. Sounds like a plan!

Have a wonderful Summer-like Spring day! 

Monday, May 23, 2016

Victoria Day

On Sunday we had beautiful weather for our Victoria Day celebrations. Not everyone could make it home for a barbeque, but we had enough to make for a good time.

I tried an easy cake recipe...all it takes is an Angel Food cake mix and a large can of crushed pineapple.
It looked and smelled so good out of the oven...
....and it was a success! The cake turned out so fluffy and light, the perfect dessert after a heavy bbq dinner. I would agree with comments online that it is probably best with just a bit of whipped cream, no frosting.

The younger generation was in charge of fireworks and they did a great job. I found myself a little melancholy as the site of the day's activities took me back 20 years to another time. 

Today is starting out a bit slow (I'm really not used to staying up after 9p.m.!). I really wanted to work on the longarm today but the sunny day is calling my name! We'll see.

I did get a couple of hearts appliqued this morning for my Quilty365/Year in My Life and I think they're quite pretty...
Maybe some peaceful time in the garden is called for.

 I was excited yesterday to see some buds on my Wisteria. At first I didn't know what I was looking at, I've never seen Wisteria buds before!  The buds are a beautiful, bright lime green colour. I can't even remember what colour the flowers are supposed to be but I guess I'm about to find out! I think I planted it five or six years ago and this will be the first time it flowers. How exciting!

I hope everyone gets to relax today and enjoy the absolutely perfect weather we are having on this Victoria Day long weekend!

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Blossoms and bumblebees!!

What a lovely time of year!

As the Spring days go on I enjoy peering around the garden to see what has made it through the winter.

I'm happy to see the hydrangea my sister gave us as a wedding present last year is peaking out...

I think it was called Bride's Blush. The flowers first appear white then turn a lovely barely-there blush pink.

...and the lily that our Scottish visitors bought us from the Simcoe market has made it's appearance, also...

In bloom at the moment, among other things, is my Canadian Redbud. Along with the beautiful blossoms it is full of big, fat, noisy bumblebees. They didn't mind at all that I came up close and personal to get a few pictures, they were intent on their job!

The time has come to prepare my "Circle" quilt for it's journey to the National Juried Show at Quilt Canada in Toronto next month. 

I've laid it out to make sure that there are no pet hairs, threads, etc., attached to it so it can be boxed up and ready to ship on Tuesday. It's hard to believe the time for Quilt Canada has come up so fast!

The time is also coming up fast for little Miss Minnie to have her first litter of puppies, I'm guessing in about ten days. She is such a feisty little thing (which is not my usual nickname for her!) but she is getting quite cuddly, so maybe that's a sign that she's almost ready? She is wanting me to hold her and stroke her. I think she's wondering what the heck is going on! Poor little bugger (which happens to be my usual nickname for her!).

...and here is Cooper, not a care in the world....but he does wonder why Minnie doesn't want to play as rough as usual or race around the yard like they like to do...

Last weekend I started a baby quilt for my new grandson who will be arriving into the world on June 21. I've been putting it off and realised I'd better get at it. Luckily, it's an easy one.....not so luckily, there is a lot of bias edges! I still have to add some borders but have stopped to hang it first on the design wall. Hmm, I think my longarmer will have something to say about this one! I sprayed it with starch and it seems to have been tamed...a bit. I'll just have to make sure it gets laundered before baby uses it, to get the starch out.
Hmm, hard to see the piecing in the picture, I think, because of the pastel colours. Quite a different colour scheme for me!

I now have to admit to another "start". What is wrong with me!? 

A few weeks back on one of Kathy's Quilts "Slow Sunday Stitching" posts there was this lovely embroidery shown by one of her followers. I loved it!....and have started it!....It's called Flowerville by Rosalie Dekker. I don't know if it was the whimsical design or the variegated threads...probably both!

So, this is what I was poking away at for some slow Sunday stitching this morning.

Check out Kathy's Quilts to see what others are stitching on today!

Have a wonderful Victoria Day weekend!

Thursday, May 19, 2016



It's been five days of not being home. I'm taking it a bit slow this morning....on purpose. I feel exhausted so I've just got into some comfy clothes and will finally have a day to recuperate! 

The last two days were full-day classes in Fonthill at The Quilting Bee. They had brought in Bethanne Nemesh of White Arbor Quilting in Pennsylvania to teach her style of longarm quilting.

Bethanne is only the second person I know of that actually has a technique named for her....it's called Nemeshing.

Here is a close-up of that technique...
So beautiful! Bethanne has won many, many awards!

Here are a couple more pictures that I took to share with you...

I wish I had signed up for today's class, also. It's called "The Devil is in the Details" and focuses on finishing techniques to up the wow-factor on your quilts. Oh well, Bethanne assures me that I can learn everything and more in her book of the same name.

I'd better get a move on now....back to the real world! What to do first....longarm, housework or yardwork? It all needs attention, but all I feel like is going back to bed, lol !

Have a great day!

Sunday, May 15, 2016


We did some experimenting in the kitchen this week. After enjoying the Spanakopita in Niagara-on-the-Lake a couple of weeks ago I really wanted to try to make it at home.

I've said it before but I'll say it again....when it comes to recipes, I love Pinterest! I've had a couple of "fails" but mostly have had great luck trying new things.

I have so many spices and oils in the house now because of Pinterest that I've never had before!

Here are a couple of pictures of our fun in the kitchen...

....and on the plate ready to eat....
The filling was fantastic! It may have been my first time working with phyllo pastry and I think I was a bit stingy on how much olive oil I brushed on between the layers. There will definitely be a "next time"!!!

I was able to finish one of the blocks for this month's HappyDay BOM, the other two blocks are appliqued ones. It's fun to see what others have fussy-cut for the centre square when I see other people's blocks on the Facebook group. I love this horse fabric!

I didn't have much to work on this morning with my morning coffee. I'm at a Retreat this weekend (not an overnighter, though) and I think I forgot my applique there. At least, I hope that's where it is!!! 

So, this morning my slow stitching is on my Life is Beautiful. This project has been slow-going since I don't pick it up all that often, but I'm still enjoying the blocks.
I'm linking up with Kathy over at Kathy's Quilts to see what others are slow stitching on today!

Then I'll head back to Retreat and hopefully find that my applique supplies are there waiting for me!!!

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Happy Mother's Day!

There is actually another applique block and a pieced block for this month!

Here is what I have so far. There are a few more wreath blocks to do and a number of simple star blocks. They will be fillers and we have til October to get them done on time....no problem. (ahem!)
I'm loving working with with the Tula Pink fabrics on this HappyDay BOM. They are very happy and jolly.

Along with working on my Happy Day block this morning, I put some slow stitches into my first Rowdy Flat Library Quilt block...
There is still a bit of a "bubble" on the toile bit. I've done it twice and don't know how I can do it better....and there is something else I'd change up....but, I'm calling it okay! This will be a very pretty quilt!

I read Kathy's blog this morning and she is showing progress on her Life is Beautiful quilt. She's really moving right along with it, and has done some of the piecing, as well.

Her post inspired me to put my blocks up on the wall and take stock...

Not bad. I wish I as a bit further along but it's okay. This was always meant to be a go-to for when I didn't have some applique prepped, or as a take-along when needed. 

I've realised that I don't have many "finishes" this past year, but what I've always stood by is that it's the journey of my craft that appeals to me....the end product will come....one day. In Kathy's post she says, "the process of creation is just as important as the end product", so I know that she understands this also. 

On as side note, we have been enjoying our start to Tai Chi this last couple of weeks. It can be a bit overwhelming if I start to think about all the "moves" that are to come....but then I take on the same philosophy as my applique and quilting....enjoy the journey and the end result will come....one day! We just have to have trust in the process, since it seems to have worked for many others who enjoy Tai Chi.

I'll be linking up with Kathy at Kathy's Quilts to see what others are slow stitching today. 

I'm also linking for the first time with Judy over at Patchwork Times to see what is on others' design walls!

Have a wonderful day....and....

Image result for happy mothers day images 2016

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Finally, Wednesday!

Today is a time to sit back and breathe.

It's been a hectic few days. I knew it would be and was set to just put one foot in front of the other and make it to Wednesday!

On Monday I prepared and did my trunk show for the Haldimand Quilters' Guild. As some of you may know, it's quite the job to gather and pack (in order) the quilts needed. 

Here we are, all packed up!
One of the best purchases we've made for doing trunk shows is the hockey bag! We came across it one day...regular $100 marked down to $25. Perfect for holding many, many quilts...it has wheels...and has never been used for smelly hockey gear. We should have bought two!

Here are the quilters of Hagersville guild, all happy and waiting to hear my story...
I've known quite a few of these women for many years, so it was a little scary and, at the same time, a lot of fun to speak to them. 
I wish I had thought to take a couple of pictures of the show-and-tell that evening. Two women are pretty well up-to-date on the 365Challenge and showed their blocks all sewn together. So beautiful! It's inspiring me to try to catch up as I'm way, way behind on this one.

The guild is good at picture-taking, so I'm sure if you look up the Facebook page for the Haldimand Quilters' Guild you will see a picture of these two women's 365Challenge.

Thanks so much, ladies, for a fun evening. It was so nice that some of my favourite quilts seemed to resonate with you, also!

It took me a bit of pushing to actually work on Monday during the day. I almost gave up, but am glad I didn't as it was a great distraction from the nervousness of the trunk show that evening. 

I worked on a real beauty....for me anyways, since TulaPink fabrics are my current favourite...
It was quilted with a "new to me" panto called Angle Play....much different from the curvy designs I'm used to. It had a degree of difficulty getting used to....and, strangely enough, was a lot of fun and stitched along surprisingly quickly.

Here's the back...more TulaPink!...
The woman's face on the backing fabric always makes me think of the actress who plays Claire in the Outlander series.

I was even able to get one of my daily hearts done in this fabric...
Have a wonderful Spring day!

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Slow Stitching

How funny this quilty life is!

 I've realised that I may have taken on some quilting projects that I don't love, so it could be time to cut them loose....just to give myself a break! There are too many beautiful quilts to be made. It doesn't make sense to me to be working on some just because you happen to have started them. 

But as soon as I make that decision, another project tempts me!

I've had a pattern by Jen Kingwell for a while now and wasn't sure when I'd ever get around to it. It's called Sweet Greens and Beans.

Haven't I stumbled across a Facebook "support group" that is just starting this quilt together!!! What's a girl to do? (don't answer...rhetorical question!)

We'll see...if it's an easy-going time-frame maybe I'll take part.

It's been a first-time sleepover at Grandma's for my grandson. I'm sure I'll need a nap this afternoon! I'll just have to push on thru' though for a couple of days as there are some very busy days ahead!

I'm preparing for my trunk show at the Hagersville Guild on Monday evening. So, this afternoon will be spent packing up my quilts. It should have been done by now but the days are going by much to fast. 

Then there is the new Tai Chi classes to fit into the schedule! We've been to a couple now....and quite enjoying it! I'm a little achey, but it's a good kind of ache.

I did take some time on Friday during my lunch break to prep the next border of FlowerGarden. It was a toss-up whether this would be next to work on or AuntieGreen'sGarden. It doesn't really matter which...I've set myself a goal of having them done for the Fair in 2017, so no problem!, (she says confidently, lol!).

I've neglected my hearts for the Quilty365/Year in My Life this month. This is definitely not a project that I want to let go by the wayside!

I don't have any rows of hearts sewn on since last time I reported in...
...but I do have a stack of hearts waiting to be appliqued...
I do love the horse fabric on this one!
My goal for May will be to catch up with my hearts. I'm still loving this quilt and the process.

I'm linking up with Audrey at Quilty Folk to see how others are doing on their Quilty365 blocks.

I have a few blocks to do to get up-to-date with my Splendid Sampler, but I did manage to get an easy one done while waiting for my grandson on Saturday. This one is called Lina's Gift by Pat Sloan...
Today was not a usual day for some slow stitching with my coffee since my grandson has my attention. 

I did manage to do a wee bit on my Rowdy Flat Library Quilt, though!
I am linking up with Kathy's Quilts so we can check out what others are working on today.

I'm also linking up with Cynthia's post over at Oh Scrap!

Looking back, this post seems a bit choppy, but the best I can do while having a wee break while babysitting!

Have a great day!