Friday, December 31, 2010

The "No Feet" Post

Cheapo Fiscally conservative that I am...
I'm not willing to shell out moola for a picture of bare feet walking a path.

Which is what I wanted to end the year with.
The thought of me walking into the next 365 days.
Not knowing what they will bring.
But being thankful for each one.

Mostly, thankful for family and friends (this means YOU!) that walk the path with me or are walking another way and we intersect here and there.

Wishing you a Happy New Year!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Turning the Corner!

My favorite day of the year just passed.
The winter solstice!
From now on, it will stay lighter just a little bit longer each day.
That means spring is on the way!

Trying to catch up on all the bloggy goodness that happened at Christmas.  I love reading about the traditions and memories families and friends kept and were making!

Hubby luv took the week of Christmas off for vacation.  The boys enjoyed having him home.  Javi is on a three week break from classes and Bean and Middleman are off this week still.  Friends over today to kick bootay on the XBox!

Some exciting news at our house!  We've adopted!  LOL
Please welcome Wee-kips to the family with us.
Here she is just waking up from her mid morning nap.  Not to be confused with her early morning or late morning nap.

Wee-kips was an outside kitty at KT's country home.  She has some issues due to what they think were either being hit by a car or attacked by a larger animal.  They live in coyote country and Wee-kips just showed up at their house late summer/early fall.  She also has something not quite right with her jaw as in head injury?

She is the most docile, loving, cuddly kitten in the world.  Lady and Peek-a-Boo are adjusting.  Speaking of, Peek has had a couple of instances where what we think is a tumor has burst.  It happened again this morning and we've decided that taking her to the vet would probably kill her (does not do car rides at all!) and the vet would either suggest putting her down or a treatment she might not survive anyway.
We've decided to keep her here at home and let Nature take its course.

Among some other fun, quiltey things, I finished the Aloha Quilt.

This is the back.  The two tall people helping me were Javi and his friend Josh.  Thanks guys!

This is the front.  I quilted straight stitch around the pinwheels and a meandering stitch on the large, floral print.  Just a thin edge for the binding.  I wanted to get better pictures, but the guys were needed in the family room to kill aliens!

Okay, not quite caught up on everything, but I feel better just reconnecting with blogland.

Hard to believe another year is almost here!  I don't do resolutions, because I usually break them.  LOL 

Wishing all a Happy New Year!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Friday Finish-Lazy Butt Blues

I live in Cornville, USA.
Our nightlife is eating out and trips to Wal Mart.
I do, however, belong to the Indianapolis Modern Quilt Guild.  I'm not sure why they let me in since I've never been to a meeting.
When you have kids, who have soccer, school, germs etc, you find your availability is a teeny bit constrained by them.

It's okay though.  'Cause I love them!

Karen's block for November.
Where did November go?
Oh, yeah.
So, tonight was the night to get up off my lazy duff and do some construction!

She asked for houses with block measurements in multiples of threes.  Mine ended up 12.5 x 12.5". 
I have learned not to try and quilt after a chemo treatment for my mom.  LOL
The brain disengages at the parking lot of the cancer center and I'm not exactly sure when (or if) it will decide to start functioning again tonight.  I loved the colors and fabrics she chose.  Not ones I would normally pick, but I loved the way it turned out.  That's what I like about the bees, you get to be out of your comfort zone and play on the wild side!  The orange strip at the bottom is for all the brick roads we have in our town that I just love.
I originally was going to try and do a block of my house......but.....ahem.  Simple really is better! 

You can see incredible, inspiring and beautiful pictures on our flickr group!

Mom's doing well.  She's experiencing some of the side effects of one of the drugs.  Bless her heart, she's a trooper.  She brought her knitting (she's making a prayer shawl for the church) but they vampired her and the iv was in the way.

Here's to a safe weekend for those traveling on the coming snow!
Here's to a better weekend than me for those who live a little bit more south and warmer!

Our soccer coach's family is in serious need of a miracle.
Would you please lift them up in prayer over the next few days?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

This Week's Finishes!

One reason I hate snow is that it's usually there because it's cold.  Too cold to go outside and take decent pictures of anything!

Madeline's block is finished.  I think I like it on point as much as not.  When I made the "Dove" in the middle, I just kept thinking bikini top or owl eyes.  'Cause what you don't see are the curved sides on this flower.  LOL  I'm glad it got sewn into something a little less crazy!

Both blocks together.  Funny, the solid one looks larger in dimensions than the scrappy one.  My points aren't quite like I would like them on this bottom edge for Madeline, but no amount of finageling would fix it!

Over the last few months, I've been stashing away orange fabrics with the intent of making a quilt for a cancer patient at the center where my mom takes her chemo.  I'm saving up blue as well (you can kinda see it on the left).  I'm thinking a HST one about the size of a large lap quilt, less than a twin.  Cancer patients receive Benadryl (or a form of it) when they take their chemo and this, along with the other drugs, can make them experience cold and chills.

I'd like to give a little warmth back into the world.

Happy, sunshiney, warm colors!

I'll be working on the November block for Karen for the IMQG bee.  She asked us to make house or building blocks (which I cannot copy and save the examples she sent, ratz!) in such vibrant, colorful fabrics!  Need to do a little planning on this one.

Carppy, crappy picture.  Here is what I've gotten done so far on my Lone Star quilt.  I started it at my mom's right after her latest chemo.  Dad was in the hospital and we didn't want her to be home alone during her "sleepy" weekend.

This is a QuiltSmart, fusible interfacing pieced project.  I've been wanting to do a Lone Star for a long time after seeing one at my LQS.  KT and I wrangled our broods and hubbies together in their "many" van on a Saturday and went together for some therapy.  I was going to buy the strip method pattern, until I saw this

pattern could be done on the fusible interfacing.  It's exactly like English Paper Piecing!  The seams fit together wonderfully!  The hardest part is figuring out what fabrics and colors you want to use.

Very much worth the money to buy the interfacing and do it this way, especially since this is a first time trying this pattern.  I have a better feel for how things go together and where to place fabrics.  I will definitely be doing this one again.  I just wish the pictures were better, but it's bleak, gray, white and cold outside.  Which, as you know, means dark inside!  Blech!

And it is that time of my life where my 5th grade student will be showcasing his burgeoning talent.

Ah yes!
Bean originally began with the French Horn.  But, it was difficult to play and gave him headaches.  Go figure!
So, he moved on to a trumpet like instrument called the cornet.
Much smaller, not as loud.

Hope you all have a great day, despite whatever weather you're having.  If it's sunny and warm where you are, book me a flight and I'll come visit!  If not, I feel your pain!

An update on my mom and dad.  Dad came home Monday from the hospital and is settling in nicely at home with things getting back to "normal" (if there ever is such a thing!).  Mom had her doctor's visit yesterday and will need two more chemo treatments and then will be on a maintenance chemo treatment once a month.
Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers.  That was a very long three weeks!

Don't forget to check out Amy's blog for Sew & Tell's Friday Finish!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Scrappy Star Block

This last weekend I got to share with my mom at her house.  She has a "sleepy" weekend where she watches a little tv, putters a bit, eats and then naps.  All day long.  LOL  We drove up to see my dad and I got to spend some time working on a new project which I don't have pictures of yet. 

Madeline asked us for a block called "Dove in the Window".  My month has been so full, today was the first day I could sit down and devote a morning to reading the instructions and piecing a test block.
I rummaged through the scrap bag for beautiful blues.  This is a 9" unfinished block that can be found here.

The little center pieces will make you burn your tiny fingers when pressing with steam!  Yow!

But it's complete and will be going in the mail after the holiday, along with a special package for a special bloggy friend.

Dad remains in the hospital until at least Monday.  We will surely miss him on Thanksgiving day and for dinner Saturday.
On a hugely happier note, my mom's CA125 count is down within normal.  Which means the chemo is working.  She'll have one more course and hopefully be done!

Wishing you all a blessed Thanksgiving and sharing with you three of the things I'm most thankful for:

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Catching my breath

and trying to breathe.

Thank you all for lifting us up in your thoughts and prayers.  We're getting through each day and shaking our heads at the thought of where we've come from and trying not to give too much thought to what tomorrow will bring.

You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence,with eternal pleasures at your right hand.  Psalm 16:11

Dad remains in the hospital until Tuesday or Wednesday of next week.
He's doing better, but I want my Dad back the way he was.

Dad and Coach Crean's wife at a recent IU game.

Mom has another treatment today.  My sister is by her side for this one.  We're tag-teaming.  LOL  It's an all day treatment for her, and the doctors have given her permission to visit my dad outside of normal visiting hours today so she doesn't have to travel back to town, or stay in town after the chemo.
A friend of my dad's will be visiting him tonight to keep him company.  Mom doesn't do night-driving very well, so we've been taking turns picking her up and chaffeuring her to visit Dad for the two hours a day she can see him.

They will be celebrating 40 years of marriage in December. 

Tomorrow I will be dropping kids off at school, picking them up, dropping Middleman off at co-op and picking Mom up for her post-chemo shot.  We'll pick Bean up then and drop him off at another friend's house til Javi gets home from school and work.  Middleman has a ride back to town from co-op (in another town) sometime tomorrow.  Several of the teens go "airsofting" in a forested aread owned by a church one of our families go to.  Hubby's parents will be helping take care of our niece and nephew through the next couple of days. 

Calling hours tomorrow night for Joyce, and a dinner in the state capitol for hubby whom-I-love-so-much's work.

Trying to make plans for someone to be with Mom the rest of this weekend and next until we're comfortable with her staying alone.

Saturday is the homecoming celebration.  This woman was a pastor's wife, mother, friend, grandmother, daughter, sister, mentor, spiritual mom and so much more.  I had the blessing of being able to tell her goodbye Tuesday.  I had just left my mom after visiting with Dad at the hospital and still had my surgical mask I've been wearing around Mom because I've been sick.

Mask in place I knocked at Joyce's door and my sister in law led me in to talk with her dad, and say, "I'll see you soon." to her mom.

What has gotten me through the last week and a half is the knowing that I have been in tighter, nastier, more painful and agonizing places in my life.  And He has always gotten me through them and on a brighter path with the hands of my friends and family right there holding me for Him.  Being His hands and feet.  His comfort and peace.

And for KT, that means being His chef extra-ordinaire!
She had fed us, made us laugh and challenged two very wonderful boys to step up to the plate and be the men they are destined to be--by thinking more of others than of themselves.
What a friend.  What a sister.

May we all have such blessings in our times of need.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Fly to Jesus!

Home is a much better place.

Celebrating the life, joy, spirit and homecoming of Joyce!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

I think last post, I mentioned something about our life not being any sadder,
Tuesday evening we took my dad to the hospital.
He will be there at least until the 16th.
Watching the woman he loves be diagnosed with cancer, all the radiation and chemo and surgery has been extremely difficult on him.  He has been on medication to help him help her and it's needing some modification faster than just being at home can give him.

Mom has another chemo treatment this Thursday and we're taking one day at a time here.  Prayers for her strength and Dad's speedy and complete recovery are coveted!

Thank you so much for your prayers for us, for Joyce and our other friend.  Joyce is not doing well and her family is surrounding her with love and visiting as much as they can.  Our other friend went home from surgery and is doing as well as can be expected.

This is day 3 of the knock-down-drag-out-put you down-just go ahead and shoot me-crap that has settled in my throat, head and chest. 

I need to go pack.

Be back when things are a little drier around here, 'cause you know, when it pours!

Monday, November 8, 2010

We call it chemo brain!

We like to have fun at our house.
My sense of humor is, in great measure, a gift from my mom.

Things are a little weird around here right now.
Coherent thinking a little lacking.
Motivation almost nonexistent.

We call it chemo brain.
When the brain and rational thinking decide to take a bit of a vacation to warmer climes.
And it's catching.
Not only does the person with cancer have it, but those around them are infected too.

Knowing you need to be somewhere, and miraculously, find yourself there and not remembering driving there.
Staring into space for goodness knows how long at a can of refried beans in the International Foods aisle, only snapping out of it when someone says, "Excuse me."
Telling the boys to wash their teeth and brush their faces.

The list goes on.
And it just gets more embarassing!

So, it is perfectly understandable that when you are asked to make a block 12.5" x 14.5" (not a square) by your IMQG buddy-and you make a 12.5" x 12.5" square block instead.

What to do?  What to do?  Since she specifically asked us not to use another white fabric, I improvised and added two 1.25" x 12.25" strips to the outside.  I'm hoping she will not be too offended and be merciful on me, a sinner.

I'm mailing it off with a little note of explanation tomorrow.

A White Christmas.
My sister in law's mother is dying of cancer.  She was sent home with hospice within the last two weeks and wanted to have Christmas with her family before she goes Home.  So, they had their Christmas celebration yesterday.  On Friday, the Lord sent our town a thick, heavy, wet snow.  It coated the streets, yards and rooftops.  Our neighborhood was the only one in town that still had snow yesterday.
Joyce got her White Christmas.

I am always humbled by how much He cares for us.

On a sadder note (as if our lives couldn't stand it right now), a former teacher, co-worker and friend of hubby muffin's and mine was diagnosed with breast cancer that has spread to her lymph nodes.  She has surgery Wednesday.

Please keep these incredible women in your prayers!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The "Oh so not Friday Finish" Post

Thank you all for the lovely prayers and thoughts today!
My mom reads the blog faithfully, and will see them all next time she feels like being online.
She made it through today's treatment with good spirits and an appointment for her shot tomorrow.
We're thinking this is her fourth time through and God has been so good to keep her strength and health up!

This week I started and finished up a table quilt for a good friend, Gerri.
She's my basketball/soccer practice, game and tailgating buddy.
She loves the colors of the Fresh Cotton and Breakfast at Tiffany's (secretly showed them to her making her think they were for a quilt for me).
I'm still diggin' the machine piecing technique for hexagons.

This is being gifted tomorrow at co-op.  Hopefully in time for all of her fall hostessing duties.  She opens her home to anyone and everyone and has such a spirit of hospitality.

I used some ribbon that Rene had wrapped some of her gorgeous photography postcards in a while ago.  I thought it looked perfectly lovely on the back of the quilt.

A shot of the quilting on the back.  I did this one the old fashioned way, bringing my underside thread up through the top and then securing it and the top thread when I'm done quilting.  I like this much better, even though it was very time consuming on this one.

Amy is not hosting Friday Finish Sew & Tell this week in order to gear up for the Fall Blogger's Quilt Festival.  I'm not submitting this time, but you can be sure I'll be scouring the pictures for inspiration and enjoyment.

God gives good friends through blogland, and I'm so glad you're here!

Ovarian Cancer-Teal Ribbon Day

Thanks guys, for everything. 
You are the best!
Blue was in honor of my hubby's favorite color and a blanket named "Denim Mist" I'm crocheting for him.

Would you pray today though for my mom and my family?

She begins chemo today at 9:30.

About five years ago, she was diagnosed with Stage IV ovarian cancer. 
We've often talked about how we wouldn't trade what we've learned through this for anything.
Except maybe a cure.

Each day is a gift.  Second chance and new beginning.  We never know what's right around the next second hand on the clock, so make each one count!

Thank you all.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Am I Blue?

Blue and White Snails Trail
Vicki Welsh

Lightstreams Glass Tile

Marble King USA

Kaffe Fassett Blues

Auto Accessory

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Friday Finish!

If you've never been to the Friday Finish over at Amy's, you are really missing out on some truly gorgeous, creative, beautiful and fun projects showcased for Sew & Tell!

This week, my finish is a surprise for someone very special.

Just a sneak at part of something fun heading out in the mail soon.
I watched a tutorial on machine peicing hexies.
Lady Harvatine's technique is awesome.  I love hexies, but they're rough on the hands!  LOL

This lil' something was fun to choose fabrics for and learn a new way to make something I like-that much easier to make!  What could be better!

A look at the back and machine quilting I finished this morning.  I tried to backstitch to anchor the inner hexies' quilting (somethine I saw someone else do), but I don't like the look as much as doing it the old fashioned way.

I used my ruler to enlarge the hex template I used on this and cut out 42 (42 more to go) hexies from Breakfast at Tiffany's charmpack from Moda.  The other 42 will come from the Fresh Cotton line.

Something with a fall palette, but without being so kitchy.

Also finished was my October block for Claudia at the ISQB.

She chose these incredibly bright, happy fall colors!  I just love them!  My points were off on this a little bit.  No amount of seam ripping and reworking would make them exact.  Ratz!  I hate that!

Jessica from the ISQB sent my this lovely block

to round out the number I have received to 10.  I can't wait to make more of these and get the top finished!
Thanks ladies for helping with a quilt full of friendship and memories!

I'll leave you with the view this afternoon from our backyard.  I'm really enjoying these Indian Summer days.  Lots of sunshine and warmer than normal temperatures.
It could stay this way until next spring!

Hope your weekend is blessed and full of fun times!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Oh My Stars!

This summer I started a quilt using the Modify Tradition's cheater Star Block combining vintage fabrics from sheets and pillowcases and new, modern fabric.
I believe this is some of the vintage stuff my snowbirds found for me combined with FMF that Dorrie so graciously gave me.  Another block to add to the growing pile.

Claudia asked us to make an Ohio Star for her October blocks in the ISQB.  I tested the block out using some Jennifer Paganelli fussy cuts in the center. 

I made two to go with my Dandy practice for a IMQG block from last month.

I'm not sure why I'm starting another project.  Maybe because I'm insane.  Yup.  I'm pretty sure that's it.

A few weeks ago, Amy from Sew & Tell and E from pinksuedeshoe awarded me a very special something for the Aloha quilt I posted about during the Amy Butler challenge.  It came in the mail yesterday and I did a double take at the packaging.

On the bottom, E wrote "You'll have to excuse the packaging.  Creamie was in charge."  Visit her blog to find out who her package wrapper was!

Inside was

the cutest lil' pumpkin she made!  We host Thanksgiving here for honeybuns family and this year, my family too.  This will be a perfect addition to the decorations.
Thanks E.  Thanks Amy!

Off to soccer practice!
Sleep well!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Sew & Tell Finish!

Waaaaay back in August, I started the back for the Aloha quilt.  6 x 6 rows completed.  Begun with 2" sq scraps from the quilt itself.  A single Irish Chain.

15 x 13 rows of happy, scrappy heaven! 

The next step is making the sandwich and pinning it together for quilting.

Linking up with Amy's blog and just as soon as I drop Javi off at BSU, I'm off to catch some eye candy from her Sew & Tell Friday Finish!

Have a blessed weekend!

Monday, October 11, 2010

And so it grows

Hi.  My name is Dee and I am a stashaholic.
I've been one for a little over a year now.
I admit I have a problem.
Well, not really a problem.  Sort of more like a fancy.  Yeah.  That's it.  An affinity for all things soft, bright, happy and useful in a quilt, or table runner or pillow or...whatever I want!

Unfortunately, my picture of the vintage sweetness you see on the bottom of the stack did not make it to the computer.  Wonder how that happened?  Hmmmmm.

Several weeks ago, I went to a quilt store in a nearby town and snagged some gorgeous fabrics I'm already using, thank you very much!  I got home and realized they had charged me for twice the fabric I had bought and a quick call saw me getting an instore credit.  Two of the items I purchased were these Moda charm packs.  Fresh Cottons and Breakfast at Tiffany's.  When you flip through them, you find many, many complimentary colors and patterns.  These two will share a quilt someday.

These were little scraps picked up on a shopping trip with KT not too long ago.  Yummy!

Fabrics auditioning together for a new (yes, yes, I see you other unfinished ones in the corner) project as yet unplanned.  I'm just playin' here, sheesh.  Who would be insane enough to start another WIP?

More new additions to the mix.  The one on the left is from our local Joann's that I've been coveting.  With a 40% sale on their calicos, who could pass this up?  The other two were part of what I purchesed with the store credit.

Lesly's block for September.  A Snail's Trail, which I have always wanted to try and just love.  Her fabrics were so lucious and fun to play with.  I hated to send the scraps back!  But I did.  I try to be good.

Is this where I confess that I messed this up the first go around?  When I finished it, it just didn't look quite right.  Bean had the camera making stop motion Lego Ninja videos or I would have snapped a shot to show how goofy I am.  It was looking at another sampler quilt that was finished and hanging up at the quilt store that I realized I had the QST in the wrong place around the four square.  Some very careful seam picking, pressing and praying allowed me to salvage the fabric and remake it the way it's supposed to be.

Beautiful Autumn days and temps here.
Hope it's happy and sunny where you are.
I'm thinking about temporarily relocating to Australia as it is just now spring there and I hate winter.
Any donations towards my living expenses can be sent to me asap!