Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween

I hope you all have a spooky day filled with less tricks and a lot of treats.

Monday, October 1, 2012

What To Quilt On Your Quilt

Even though this is geared toward longarmers, it does make us home sewing machine quilters think of new ideas.  Other than binding, deciding what to quilt on the quilt is always hard for me.  Because not only fabric choices, your quilting decision can make or break a quilt.  I have recently purchased a new sewing machine (blog post on that coming soon) and I am looking forward to putting it through tons of quilting experiences.  I purchased this sewing machine in June and just discovered this weekend the settings for free motion quilting.  I guess I must have overlooked them.  It really does pay to read the manual and become very familiar with it.

Happy Quilting....

Thursday, September 6, 2012

I've Been MIA For A Little While

Well as they say.....Life gets in the way.  I have been pulled in various directions and have not had a chance to sit down and update the blog.  Lots of things going on, but never enough time to sit down and formulate into written words for the blog.  Things are starting to settle down so I should be able to "show off" what I have been doing, new projects/goals in the wings and repair the dying garden for spring (no fall gardening this year) with discussing a few things I learned NOT to do.

I hope everyone is well and your craftiness is keeping you all busy.

I can truly say looking forward to some cooler weather....Texas is just so DANG hot.


Monday, May 28, 2012


HI All ... I have been working on getting caught up on my WIPs and a few days off for the holiday was the perfect time.  The Ready To Sew Bernina 2012 BOM was one of my recent WIPs that needed attention.  This year they are doing a calendar type quilt, so I am really not sure if this will be a quilt that I will keep.  I may break it up into a couple of quilts and donate them to Linus.

I am also doing Honey Bee Quilt Store BOM, however I have kept up each month with this one.

I am dong both color ways (red), but I am concentrating each month on finishing the blue.  I am wondering what setting they will suggest. for this one.  Since the blocks are soooo different I am guessing a sashing of some sort.

Happy Quilting...

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Recent Knitted Items

I have completed several knitted items and realized that I have not blogged about them.  My knitting has been getting alot better and I am loving trying out new techniques.  Just last weekend I learned to do short rows on a shawl I am making.  The specifics of the project is on my Raverly page, where I am known as KNITDEMON.

Completed in 2012

Something Lacey Shawl 03/31/12

Miami Beach Shawl 03/31/12

Queen Head Wrap 03/15/12

Kudzu Shawlette 03/06/12

Basic Stripy Sock 01/30/12

Ishbel Shawlette 01/28/12

Completed in 2011
First Time For Everything Socks 12/11/11

Summer Mystery Shawl 12/06/11

Fresco Cowl 11/13/11

Citron Shawl 11/12/11

Neckwarmer 10/31/11

Happy Knitting......

Sunday, March 25, 2012

First Yarn Club

I decided in December 2011 that I wanted to join a yarn club.  With my knitting, I was always toooooo scared to purchase the more expensive yarns (anywhere from $20 on up per skein and some skeins only had about 200 yards and most projects needed more than that) because I did not know what to buy.  I don't like itchy yarns are those that sparkle.  So I went on the scout to look for a club that would give me different yarns each month so that I would have a taste to know what I like for future purchases and to help me when I am in a physical store.  The yarn club is called Into The Whirled.  I am doing what is called a "double dose" I am getting 2 skeins each month.  I am really loving the yarn types and above all the color selections.  Per the website...

Yarns you can expect to received: Gloucester Sock - 80/20 Merino/Nylon, Pakokku Sock - 75/25 Merino/Nylon, Ulundi Sock - Merino, Saginaw Sock - Merino, Manchester Sock - 80/10/10 Merino/Nylon/Cashmere, Bukavu Sock - 75/25 BFL/Nylon, Bordeaux Sock - 80/20 BFL/Nylon.
I know for a fact if I was in a yarn store that I would not have picked these colors.

Below are the yarns received to date.  So far I don't have a reason to end the club and the good thing about the club is that you can cancel anytime and join back up anytime....great relationship.

If you did not guess by looking at the names of the yarns they are so far from the "Dr. Who" TV show.  I never knew nor watched the show, but don't worry the club is changing to a new theme, I think this will happen every few months or so.  I have heard that "Firefly/Serenity" is next.

December It's Bigger on the Inside - Gloucester Sock Yarn

January Snow angels with an Ood - Manchester Sock Yarn

February Mercy Hartigan - Ulundi Sock Yarn

March Children of Time - Saginaw Sock Yarn

Happy Knitting.....

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

New Beginnings Mini Quilt Swap

New Beginnings Mini Quilt Swap

I signed up last month to participate in the New Beginnings Mini Quilt Swap.  I received my partner's name and blog address.  I checked her out for a few weeks and based on what I saw and her response to the questionnaire this is what I came up with.  I also included a few goodies.  I hope she likes it.  The package went out in the mail Monday.

I actually had most of the items in my stash (go figure).  I used part of a 1930's charm pack, some red and white fabric and I only had to purchase the binding.

I am just waiting to receive my package from my partner (since the person I sent it to is not the partner to send me my package).

Happy Quilting......

I WON Fabric

Back in January I came across a website Form & Fabric and I checked out the site and really liked the fabric selections available.  I noticed they had a registration for "free fabric", who could pass up the possibility to win FABRIC (not me).  Can you BELIEVE I won the fabric bundle by Felicity Miller.  The fabric is beautiful and I have no clue how I am going to use them, but I am planning.  They have registration each month for different fabric to win.  You should go over and take a chance, you never just might win.

Below are closeups of the 4 fabrics I received.  Wow the richness of the colors and the designs....YUMMY!!!!!

Happy Quilting.....

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

New Ideas For The Garden

I am always looking for new things to try in the garden to try and make things better (mostly I like to experiment).  Today while reading through my favorite blogs, I came across Annie at Annie's Kitchen Garden and her recent post on her garden status.  I noticed these two posts on the right side of her blog and I read them again and thought this would be the year to give them a go.

The first one is making your own seed mats.  I have seen this all over the internet and mentioned in the various gardening classes I have attached and since I have plenty of seeds I will give this a try (also I did a cost comparison between standalone seeds and seeds already on plantable paper strips and there is a big price difference).  I think I would try it also with carrots as I tend to over plant and then I have to thin and I hate throwing away food only because they were planted to closely.  I figured out this year how to plant my onion sets and get them planted with good space around them.  I will know more at harvesting if I get bigger onions this go around.

The second one is bottomless tomato buckets.  This is the first time I have seen tomatoes grown in a bucket in this way before.  Last year I tried to grow a majority of my tomatoes in containers with only a few actually being in the raised beds (to tell you the truth I did not have enough real estate for ALL the tomatoes I started from seed).  I did notice that with the bucket method (which I placed on top of weed cloth outside the garden) that I had to water more often (I did get a few tomatoes, but not enough for what I put into it, also we had a drought last year).  I wonder if by sitting the buckets on top of the soil and allowing the plants to root into the soil below the bucket level, if it actually allows the plant to be more sturdy and allows it to take in more water and keep the soil moist (not sure, but will know for next time).

Thought I would share some new techniques from fellow gardeners.  I will soon be posting about my garden status and the plants that I started from seed and they are ready to go in the ground.  I should be able to start planting this weekend (knowing that there may be at least 1 or 2 more freezes possibly through April).

Happy Gardening......

Monday, March 19, 2012

Quilt Festival Coming To Austin

So excited to have this quilt convention come to Austin.  Look out for it 02/21-24/2013.

Since I am a newbie quilter and one who loves to work from scraps and (not necessarily designing quilts), but putting them together with what I have and making adjustments, I think the convention will give you great ideas.  Above all you can spend time in the presence of other quilters right in your own city.

Happy Quilting....

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Surprise In The Garden

During my cleanup this past weekend (meaning I finally got around to doing it), I realized the sweet potato bucket needed to be emptied (technically it should have been emptied prior to the first frost, but life got in the way and we had 2 back to back frost come in too quick for me to do anything in the garden.  I just left everything alone.  I figured the potatoes had turned to mush or something, but when I brushed away a few inches of soil, I found a couple of potatoes.  I then took hold of a dead vine and pulled it and about 4-5 small potatoes were attached.  I thought this can't be true (only my 2nd year growing sweet potatoes).  So I started to clear more and more soil and low and behold this is what I found.  I don't have a scale to weight them, but that won't be a problem, because once they are peeled and seasoned (to become sweet potato fries) and put in baggies to go in the freezer for later use,  they won't be around long of enough to worry about the weight.  To see what bucket was emptied see my video here.

The photo above is the largest potato in the bunch.
I have to thank my daughter for helping mom out (well technically she was paying off a debt instead of paying me in cash, she paid me in labor, shhhhh don't tell Department of Labor you know child labor laws and all).  She pulled all the dead plants from about 7-8 beds (ranged from medium to large beds), chopped them up to be thrown away (my compost bins runneth over, that is the next project to figure out a better system since my trash can system is not working out so well).  She also helped me (sew) another mesh covering for my greenery bed (still pictures and what I did to come in case you want to give it a try).  The next project she will help me with if I can wait (since she has an all day business competition next Saturday and then SAT test the following Saturday) is to lay 6-7 bags of mulch on the garden floor (to prevent grass from growing) and clean up the flower beds around the house.  I am so ready for spring to come (but not the 100 degree temps of summer last year).

Monday, January 9, 2012

Do You Know the Difference?

I came across this post and I found it truly informative.  I have just started seeing it appear more and more in patterns I wish to make from appliqueing, bags, etc.  I love the fact that Ashley includes brief project examples of how to use either interfacing, fusible adhesive, and fusible web and the close up shots of what each one looks like (back and front) helps you understand what you will feel and see when trying to decide.  Have you ever wondered what was the difference between these (keep in mind there are several different companies that make them, so you will have to experiment which you like best), well Ashley has broke it down for you.  I have seen racks of various types interfacing at my local craft store and they were all different and I was baffled on what I needed, also I was curious if I should buy more or different types when they are on sale or when I have a 50% coupon, well this post helps me.  The next thing to do now is test it out.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Summary of 2011 Events and Stuff

I wanted to take a few minutes to recap how my 2011 went (and boy did it go by fast).  I slacked off a few months on updating my life taking know how that happens.  The memorable events of 2011:
  • Knitted my first shawl, completed a full size quilt (including the quilting) for my husband.
  • Loaded all of my loose knitting patterns, magazines and books into
  • Completed my goal (well it started with 25 in May when first started tracking and ended with 100) of reading/listening to 100 books before the end of 2011.  Next year my goal will include half of them being classic books.
  • Daughter had all 4 of her wisdom teeth removed.  This was her first introduction to being put under and dealing with stitches and above all not being able to talk like the wants to.  Not sure if the no talking was a bad thing, just kidding.
  • Participated in my first "judged quilt challenge" for a charity group.  I made a quilt out of batiks (not a fan of that fabric).  I did not win, but it was truly gratifying to have to come up with a quilt with a specific theme and have it looked at by people.
  • My garden was destroyed (except for 1 bed that contained greens, Brussels sprouts and chard) due to a continuous 3 night frost.  I had tons of plants with tomatoes and peppers that were almost done and some just starting to ripen.  I know that I took a chance with a few new plants, but that was way to quick.  Luckily enough a few days prior to this freeze I took off a lot of the peppers that were ready and today I am still using them (I chopped them up and put all in separate zip lock bags).
  • Presented and attended my first Quilt University for my local quilt guild.  My booth instructed people on how to choose a pattern.  The Quilt University took a new quilter from the beginning to the end of making a quilt.
  • Built floating cold frame/enclosure for my future lettuce/greens that consisted of window screen and stitching together with cotton twine (pictures will soon come).
  • At the end of summer we ended up having around 90 days of consecutive 100+ degree temperatures.
  • Installed drip irrigation in garden.  It is not the greatest and I still have a few little things to do, but it works.
  • Tried growing "personal size" watermelon and they got to be about softball size and then all rotted.  Don't think the location was conducive to them.  Will try again next year.
  • Completed building all the vegetable boxes I needed in my garden and layed down about 1-2 inches of mulch on the garden floor bed to cut down on weeds, grass, etc.
  • Inventoried all my books and uploaded into  Turns out I own over 700 books.  I had to purchase 2 more bookcases to try and coral them all, that did not work.  I have since decided to give away the books that are no longer needed by me and that I know I won't re-read and that my daughter/husband aren't interested in.  I am trying to get it down to just 1 full bookcase at any given time that looks presentable.
  • Inventoried all sewing patterns onto an Excel spreadsheet and uploaded to my phone so that I don't purchase duplicate copies.
  • Converted to the IPhone world.  Never thought I would, but I did.
  • Inventoried seeds onto an Excel spreadsheet and uploaded to my phone so that I am always in the know of what seeds are needed.
  • After returning from New York was sick as a dog (dying dog at that) ended up with the flu for a few days and then into the hospital for a few days with pneumonia.  Oh what joy.
  • My daughter and I went on our first airplane ride ever (and even without my husband) and out of state to boot.  My daughter's band was invited to New York to perform and also the band directors included a few days of recreational fun for the students.
  • Attended first quilt retreats locally, next will be to go away to a retreat for a few days.
  • My daughter got her first "paying" job over the summer.  It was a joy to see her budgeting and spending her own money for a change.
  • Discovered audio books and found that I can get through 1 almost every day.
  • Had a tooth pulled, although in hindsight I think I should have gotten a second opinion, not to worry will be switching back to my dentist of over 8 years (long story).
  • Started back knitting and the obsession begins.
  • Decided this was the year to venture out and meet others and join various groups to expand my crafting, charity events, but above all to meet others.
Completed Projects 2011:
[3 x 6] Sampler Quilt Mini Bee-Flickr Group, 1st Qtr 2011 (Beehive 22), signed up 11/20100 (runs 01/2011-03/2011)  Must be mailed by 03/31/11.  Completed 3 of the 6 blocks needed (02/11/11)  Mailed 03/21/11.  

quiltingimaginations-Yahoo Group, Signature Block Swap, signed up 11/2010 (runs 01/15/11-04/30/11)  Mailed 01/27/11.   May do a miniature wall hanging or a mug rug.

scratchingpost-Yahoo Group, 2011 Birthday Club, signed up 11/2010 (runs 01/2011-12/31/2011).  Completed 12/2011

Mug Rug Swap Must be mailed by 02/21/11.  1 rug, pending completion of binding/label and 2nd rug needs to be quilted/binding/label.  Mailed 02/11/11.

quiltingforall-Yahoo Group, Spring Tulip Table Runner, due by February 28th for voting.  Completed 02/17/11.


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