Monday, October 31, 2011

Waiting Patiently

Today I had fun, poking through Collection D of the Hoffman Challenge.

One of my favorite things at a quilt show is to unexpectedly come upon someone taking a picture of one of my quilts. To me, it's the ultimate compliment. "Excuse me, may I take a picture of you taking a picture of my quilt?" She graciously held her pose for me.

But then she suggested I also pose with the quilt. It was actually kind of fun, since I haven't seen this little quilt since mid-July.

Tomorrow the award winners are announced. Wednesday is Preview Night. Thursday, the show opens. I had to take a picture of this sea of scooters, just waiting for the army of invading quilters. The woman in charge of them assured me that they will run out...and my picture shows less than half of the fleet.

Have you figured out where I am yet?

Sunday, October 30, 2011



The skies here are SPECTACULAR. My digital camera does NOT do them justice...

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Happiness is

seeing old friends and new fabric collections. Congratulations, Jan!!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Today's List

I spent the day at the walnuts, trying to clean out the barn. I actually made quite a bit of progress. yay!

Chupa looks like she stayed up all night. She does that sometimes, barking.

She looks a little better in this picture. She's getting her beauty rest while I battle spiders, webs, dust, and mouse droppings. ugh.

Before I left for the walnuts, I made time to finish this.

And this.

I'm pretty late with the birthday cards, and I've still got 4 names on my October list. I think I need more October.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Oh, How the Mighty

have fallen. Is this the most pathetic-looking creature you've seen in recent memory? My once-pampered lap cat is now calling the trash can lid his home. I look at him, begin to feel sorry for him, but immediately remember the puddles he left on the kitchen counter. He may look pathetic, but I can't deal with his refusal to follow litterbox protocols. Enjoy your lid, Malcolm. You earned it.

I've been trying to clear out the barn this week. Soon (I hope!) the house/garage will come tumbling down. Before it does, I need to have a place to put the contents of the garage.

To say that the barn is a challenge, is an understatement. You can't see many, but the rafters (and everything else) are strung with cobwebs. Big hairy dirty cobwebs, that have been there for years.

When you look down, you see chaos. I'm not quite sure how this happened, but when the sons moved in, their stuff did too. They didn't have the time to organize it. oh. my.

While I'm in the barn trying to clear out rubbish, I hear noisy little birds pipping and calling out back.

Indoors, the boys (mine and his business partner) are assembling a 3D printer. Yeah, I'm not quite sure either. If/when they get it up and running, it should be fascinating.

And that's the haps around here. I'm in the barn, cleaning up mouse poo, the Engineers are in the house engineering. Maybe I should have gotten my degree in something other than History.... (just kidding)

All this to say, no quilting around here right now. Maybe in the next day or two, but it remains to be seen....

Oh! We did the second shake at the walnuts, so our 2011 harvest is with the buyer. hip hip hoorah!!

Sunday, October 23, 2011


Hard to believe, but I finished that quilt. Yesterday at 10am, it looked like this. I made the binding at 6am, attached it by 7:30, and stitched it down for hours. It was a big quilt, probably about 84" x 90".

While I was stitching, my embroidery machine was also hard at work.

At 2pm, I was stitching down the label, and by 2:30, it was wrapped and ready to go. The wedding was at 4pm, 30 minutes away. Yes, I was able to clean up, dress up and giddy-up out the door. We made it to the wedding on time.

The only drawback of cutting it so close is that I did not get a photo of the finished quilt. oh well. Most important, it got to the couple, they got married, and now its fate is out of my hands.

oh, and the funny thing?

There was a HUGE sale at the local quilt store Friday/Saturday. Instead of going out and buying more fabric, I stayed home and quilted. How weird is that? It's TOTALLY out of character...

Thursday, October 20, 2011



I've been trying to come up with something quiltie to blog, but I wasn't having much luck. Do you want to see my quilts hanging at PIQF? There's the green one in the center...

And the lion on top. Notice that my quilt had the privilege to hang above the Best Handworkmanship winner, made by Zena Thorpe. Believe me, I just had to read her name on the winner's list to know that she had me beat when it comes to handworkmanship. I didn't need to hang right next to the quilt to prove it! ;) (I just found it curious, as all of the wall quilts were hung in alphabetical order...except for hers, and the zebra above. Very odd.)

But I didn't think those quilts were interesting enough to post about. How about a travel pic? See the cherry shed up ahead? That was where my son's Explorer broke down on Labor Day weekend. Did I tell you about that? He was a mile out of Gilroy, when his alternator went out. We drove over from Santa Cruz on a rescue mission, and didn't get there until well after midnight. I've since passed this cherry shed five times, and finally broke down and took the photo.

Or maybe you'd like to see Penny's latest trick. She came up with this one while we were talking this afternoon. Don't blame blogger for the sideways picture, it's the iPad's fault. I have no idea why, but the screen shot photos always seem to be flipped. (see? She's eating her foot.)

The police cat (black&white) is unimpressed. He's one of the locals who thinks we've got the best grub in town. And best places to nap. And best places to just hang out. He is not my cat, and he is not NotMyCat. :)

But none of the above was enough to get me to the computer. What got me here, was an email from a friend.

Today, out of the blue, I received a copy of Machine Quilting Unlimited from the publisher. Strange. I don't subscribe, and it was in an envelope.

I opened it. aha! It's the issue with Sharon Schlotzhauer's article in it! I'd helped her by reading it a few months back, and I thought maybe she sent it to me as a thank you. And so I sent her a thank you. I put the magazine aside, to read on the plane in a couple of weeks.

Well, I got a response telling me to OPEN THE MAGAZINE!! Why? Well...

There's a lovely picture-filled article about Sacred Threads, and somehow my Lily quilt made the cut. You know? The lily on my masthead? Yes, indeed. More Glorious Than Solomon is in print.

As the post title says, I am stunned.

And now I want to read the magazine before I get on the plane.

But I have a quilt to finish before Saturday, so I should probably get back to it. I'm halfway done with the quilting. The plan is to finish tomorrow, and attach the binding. The wedding isn't until 4pm Saturday. I'm good, right? Plenty of time?

If I don't post, I'm quilting. yay!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

On Sunday

We were back home and talking to Penny via iPad. Every grandparent/grandbaby combo should have them. They are INCREDIBLE.

While we were talking, she figured out that if you touch the little picture of yourself and drag it, you can send it around the screen. I didn't know you could do that. She's a smart cookie, that one. Her Mama had to end the call - Penny, you are NOT going to spend your life interacting with a touch screen!! :)

xxoo, Sweet Pea!!

On Saturday Night

We saw Penny.

She saw us too...even though she's pretty short.

P.S. Did you notice the two teeth in the second picture?

On Saturday

I went to Pacific International Quilt Festival in Santa Clara. This is the view one usually got of the Best of Show.

The only thing that would shift the crowd was the white-glove hostess, flipping up the back.

The winning quilt was "America, Let It Shine," by Sherry Reynolds. You can see the entire quilt here, along with the label. Sherry was there for a while. Here she is, explaining some of her techniques to a fascinated show attendee. Congratulations, Sherry!!! The quilt is STUNNING, to say the least.

Sherry had a second quilt in the show, this lovely tribute to Wyoming. The funny thing about this picture is that while I was taking a picture of her next to her quilt, a white-gloved hostess was explaining the ins and outs of the quilt to the woman blocking the central medallion. Both Sherry and I were cracking up at the expert commentary. The hostess was trying to explain why this quilt did not win a ribbon. I don't think she even realized that the maker had won BOS. :)

I had a couple of other pictures, but my computer seems to have swallowed them. Maybe next week...

On Friday

I finished a birthday card (9 days late)...

And finished the piecing of this peachy wedding quilt. The wedding is on Saturday 10/22. Sew faster! Sew faster!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Where Am I?

I was nudged today, and questioned about my lack of blogging. oh dear. I knew it had been a while. I hadn't realized it had been more than a week. Let's see...

On the 5th, it looks like it rained and I shipped my quilts to Pacific International.

On the 6th, I cut out a quilt for a wedding on the 22nd. The groom is a peach farmer. I bought the fabric 6 months ago, when I first heard about the wedding.

On the 7th, I worked on a quilt for hire. At least I think I did. Oh! And my 2010 Hoffman Challenge came home. Good to see you, baby!

On the 8th, I drove to and from LA, to help my sister move her couch. And other things. :)

On the 9th, we had our usual Sunday, with church in the morning and our College/Career Fellowship in the evening. I served "make your own sandwiches" to 13 people. More or less. I forget. Oh. Have you been by Costco lately? They've added Salted Caramel Bark to their list of killer sweet treats.

On the 10th, I lost my mind and submitted a second quilt for consideration to Road to CA. I had to take pictures. It took hours. It's my 2010 Hoffman Challenge. I LOVE this quilt!!

On the 11th, I finished the quilt-for-hire, and took the van to the shop for new brakes. It turned out there was more wrong than just brakes, which meant that I was actually at the dealer on Monday (oil change), Tuesday (new brakes, but oops you need something else too) and Wednesday (got the something else and picked up the van.) Oh, and I dropped off a quilt at the Convention Center, for a month long exhibit.

On the 12th, I started sewing on the quilt that needs to be finished for the wedding on the 22nd. It is actually going very quickly, but then I had to meet a workman at the walnuts, and was there for 4 hours. oops. Lost the afternoon.

Today is the 13th, and it was guild day. The 2011 challenges were unveiled, and they were WONDERFUL. I wish I could say that I'd made one, but I didn't. no time. That's my excuse.

In between all of this, I've run hither and yon doing this, that, and the other thing.

Tomorrow I deliver the 3 quilts-for-hire that I finished this month, and pick up another. wow.

In between all that, there has been the usual day-to-day, the trying to get the house down (still talking with the contractor), trying to focus on the quilt show - have you seen the updated website? - missing my kids, planning for Houston, trying to fit in PIQF, et cetera et cetera et cetera.

And with all that I've been doing, my camera has either stayed in my purse or in my car or on my desk. It hasn't been within reach when I've needed it. I'll try to get back on track, but with everything coming up in the next few months? Well, I can only face it one day at a time.

Yep. Stay tuned. It's gonna be busy!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

A Rainy Day

I woke up to rain, dripping from the eaves. Good thing hubby stayed out late last night, scraping out the rain gutters. The radioman said they had 1" in Fresno. It was enough to flood the 99 in a couple of places and cause a 7 mile back-up. That's a lot of rain!

I thought, "Oh! This will be a good day to finish that quilt-for-hire." Yes, it would have been, had I pulled it out and worked on it. Instead, I shipped my quilts to PIQF, I ran errands, I made a couple of quilt blocks for exchanges, I worked on a few ideas for cards, and I made a basket.

I like this one. It's happy. It's got a splash of color, highlighting the neutrals. I think it's very effective.

I don't really plan these baskets. I just keep a pile of my clean-up strips from strip cutting. When the pile gets really big, I sew similar colors together, then wrap the clothesline, in preparation for basket sewing. Today I used my half-filled bobbins as well, so I really cleaned up, literally!

I'm having a lot of trouble with my camera. It keeps telling me my batteries are dead, but I've changed them three times. Usually I get more than 10 minutes out of new batteries! Unless I bought a 40 pack of dead batteries from Costco, it's a camera issue, not a battery issue. It refused to focus, and then shut itself off with the message, "Change batteries." yeah right. I just did!

And that's it. A sewing update, not a quilting update. Oh well. Perhaps tomorrow I will get back to that quilt-for-hire. Goals are good!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Cars and Stuff

I was called out to the walnuts today, to help work on a car. While I was there, the Snookieman showed up. This is his truck.

I drove there in my car.

This is my old car. I drove it from '98 until I got the above car, in 2002. Number 3 son currently drives the van, although I borrow it now and then.

Number 1 son was stressing over the cost of gasoline to fill his green Explorer, so he bought this Metro from Number 2 son. It's too small and scary to drive on country roads. Instead it is the farm vehicle, driven back and forth for night irrigating.

This is also Number 1 son's Explorer. Today he was driving the green one, so I couldn't take its picture.

This is also Number 1 son's Explorer. He originally bought it as a parts car, but Number 3 son is trying to make it driveable. Its current issue is the transfer case. He's already replaced it once, but he got the replacement from a pick n pull place, and it seems to have issues. He says he'll pull it and replace it again this week.

This is Number 3 son's new-to-him car. Looks okay at first glance,

Until you go around back. Today I helped reinstall the exhaust manifold. "Mom, hold this here and put the hole on that bolt there while I tilt the engine back." Easier said than done, until we got a size 5 external torx socket. What? You don't know what that is? That's okay, most of the places we shopped for it didn't know either. Fifth store was the charm.

How many cars do two boys need, anyway? Probably not quite this many...

While I was waiting to be put to work, Mr. Cat availed himself of my services. I had just finished telling him that I was not interested in sharing my lap, and that he's too hairy for my liking.

Mr. Cat plays rough. He's all claws and teeth. I'd finally had enough and tossed him overboard. He snagged my new top in about 10 different places. grrr. Good thing it was on clearance!

Chupa was happy to observe, as long as she was protected by the chair.

But when I put Mr. Cat on the deck, he got ticked and took it out on Chupa. He swiped her nose, and she fell backward off the deck. She was not at all upset - the tail is still wagging - but she did grimace a bit. Notice the missing front teeth?

Then she really lucked out when Number 3 accidentally dropped his pickle.

Last week she stole a donut, this week the pickle was all hers. She gobbled it up posthaste. She seems to be quite adept at stealing unattended food.

Pretty exciting stuff, huh?

Take cover, the clouds are coming in from Alaska. It's not supposed to rain until Wednesday, but I'll be surprised if it takes that long. It smelled like rain an hour before the clouds blew in...

And there you go. I actually did do some quilting for hire this morning, but I didn't get as far as I'd hoped. Perhaps tomorrow. 'Til the next time...