Monday, February 25, 2013

I finally got to sew!

I have been trying for two weeks to find a whole day that I could just sew. I have several projects that need to be finished and I haven't had two minutes to myself.

Yesterday started out good, I had really good intentions. But then it happened. I found something else that needed doing.

What a mess!

Poor Victor! I dragged him out of his cozy chair and two hours later, he had redone, my cutting/ironing table and gave me this...

My New table..

The table is 20 inches wider and about 10 inches shorter. I can now get all the way around the table and I have space to do things other than cutting or ironing!

Eventually I did sew.... I finished my Inklingo block. Now I have to print another two to work on... I think it will be a runner.. so three will be the limit. Its beautiful. I haven't done the background yet because I don't really know how it will look when it is finished so I will do that later. But in the mean time it is very pretty to look at!

Inklingo Rose Star 12 inch

Then I put together my mug rug!   I don't know where my brain was when I started this project. I didn't check size and didn't put two and two together while cutting all the pieces that possibly this might be a little bigger than a mug rug. The pattern ( check my newsletter, under St. Patricks Day Projects) was called a candle mat, and I tell you, that would be one big candle to sit on this mat! LOL

Directions... no, no, no.  Just look at the pictures... you will be fine!

But I finished them up and I will use them for March on the table between Victor and I . They actually turned out really nice... just big!

My "big" Mug rugs
I am having fun with the Baltimore Christmas  quilt I am making. I have almost completed block 1, but still lots of work to do. Mostly sewing now.

Baltimore Christmas block 1

While I was making the "mats" I thought of a couple of tips to share with you.

Do You know your machine can be a third hand when you need one. Just pop the project under the dropped foot and it will hold it in place while you do what needs to be done

In my case, I needed to tie those threads that I had brought from the front. Worked like a charm!

And my second tip is: The perfect thread picker upper.

I hate when there are threads on my backing fabric or design wall, so I use this little cat hair brush to pick them up.
Wahl Cat Brush

After I have them all collected, this brush has a little button you push that pushed the threads off the little "teeth". Its perfect! I have two, just in case one goes off, looking for a Cat!

Got all the threads

I don't recommend you use it on batting though.. that didn't work very well!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Now here's something new!


This has been the year of the UFO. There are a ton of UFO parties, challenges, etc going on in the blogging communities.

But, how clever to start a linky party for people who start new projects that might become Ufo's. check this blog out!

I will be following this one very closely! My thinking... You never have too many Ufo's!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

The problem I am having is....

Last night before I went to bed I spent a few hours on the computer working on my newsletter.

I went to bed at midnight, but my mind did not! I slept soundly for a few hours, but by three I was seeing blog sites in my dreams. By 4 I was wide awake, and if I had been smart, I would have gotten up and gone to sew. But no... I spent the last two hours reading blogs which seriously just makes my brain go faster.. Now I have a headache and desperately need coffee!!

Today, is going to be a sew day! I have this Christmas runner to finish ( I wish I knew where to find that Christmas challenge) and 2 little St. Pats day mug mats to make, I want to sew a few more kitchen towel holders, a scissor case, a few little bibs for a new baby in the neighbourhood, finish block one of my Thursday quilt-a-long, start block two ( i am behind) finish my bag that I embroidered the front of a week ago finish quilting my ball quilt... Why am I laying in bed? I have way too much o do!

Christmas table runner

Block 1

Embroidery for front panel of my bag

Friday, February 22, 2013

One good thing by Jillie

I turned 60 on Wednesday and I could have written this!!! So many true life's lessons. Funny, we all learn them. But how quickly we forget. I am going to print this out and take 1 and practice it each week for the next year and reflect back at 61. Lets see how we do!

I am directly copying this from one good thing by Jillie...

51 reflections on turning 50 + 1

I’ll start with one of my very favorite quotes:

1. “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” ~~Eleanor Roosevelt

2. Time and experience heals pain. Even if you are going through an overwhelmingly painful event in your life right now….one day it will be part of your past and not nearly as significant as it seems.

3. Keep moving. We must keep putting one foot in front of the other even when we hurt. If we don’t, we will never know what is waiting for us just around the bend.

4. Be the first to say you’re sorry.

5. Kindness matters. A lot. Being kind is more important than being right. Wherever there is a human being, there’s an opportunity for kindness.

6. Mother was right….everything seems worse at night. Our isolation and insignificance seem so much greater when everyone else is asleep. Try to rest and take comfort in the approaching sunrise.

7. Find ways of doing service. It’s some of the most rewarding experiences you will ever have. You come to love those you serve.

8. For better, or for worse….means just that. Probably the five words most taken for granted in the English language.

9. Forgiving yourself is FAR harder than forgiving someone else. And, I believe, it’s never complete.

10. When the chips are down (I mean REALLY down)…family is who will come through.

11. Our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but we are responsible for who we become.

12. Comparison is the thief of joy. Don’t compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

13. ”Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway. You’ll be damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.” ~~Eleanor Roosevelt

14. Stop worrying…and start living! 99% of what we worry about WON’T EVER HAPPEN!

15. Choose happiness. Walk cheerfully on the face of the earth.

16. Let go of resentment. Holding a grudge is letting someone live rent-free in your head. KICK THEM OUT!

17. You don’t need everyone to like you. If the people closest to you love you, the ones who don’t, don’t matter.

18. Addiction is no respecter of persons. It will seek to destroy anyone who gets caught in it’s web.

19. Life is all about expectations. Stop expecting impossible perfection, in yourself and others.

20. NO ONE gets through this life without some trial. Everyone is fighting a battle of some kind.

21. Goal-setting is overrated. Problem solving is underrated.

22. Debit ruins lives. Try to avoid it all cost.

23. Never send an email when you’re mad. If you want to write an angry e-mail, do it. Just don’t send it.

24. You can’t change people. You either have to accept people for who they are or not at all. There is very little gray area here.

25. Learn to embrace Change, even when it arrives with its’ companions, Fear and Uncertainty.

26. Giving is better than getting. If you continually give, you will continually have.

27. Gratitude is the best way to find contentment. Personally I don’t think there is any way to find contentment without gratitude. It takes our focus off what we don’t have and onto what we do have.

28. Learn the art of empathy and practice it. Never underestimate the power of a smile, a kind word, or a listening ear.

29. On being a parent….stay out of the way of your kids becoming the amazing people they are. It’s more harmful to overparent than to underparent.

30. Everyone yearns for validation, love, security, enjoyment and a better future.

31. Live in the now. Don’t let yesterday use up today.

32. Live by example. Personal example carries much more weight than preaching.

33. You can’t buy happiness. Everything that is wonderful about life doesn’t cost a penny. A long walk, a hug, spending time with a good friend are all free.

34. You can’t please everyone! If you share something with enough people, you will upset someone, no matter what. That’s their problem, not yours.

35. Mistakes are how we learn. Failures are the stepping stones to success.

36. Wear sunscreen.

37. No matter how lonely you might feel, there is always someone who can relate to you. Perhaps you can’t talk to them right now, but they are out there.

38. Flowers and gardening are medicine for the soul.

39. Passionate love is overrated. Seek a mate whose values and background echo your own.

40. Relationships are messy because life is challenging. A conflict doesn’t mean the relationship has to come to an end.

41. No one is in charge of your happiness except you. Not your parents, not your spouse. You.

42. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and family will. Stay close.

43. However bad a situation is, you will get through it, one way or another.

44. Trust your gut instinct. It will be right 99% of the time.

45. Sometimes all you can do is B R E A T H E.

46. Failures are only lessons. So never regret anything that has happened in your life. Take it all as lessons learned and move on with grace.

47. The best is yet to come.

48. Experience is the greatest teacher of all.

49. This wise prayer….”God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

50. Find your passion. Discovering something you love to do has an amazing effect on your entire life.

51. I have a lot left to learn. Life still has many lessons left to teach me, and I’m looking forward to them all.

Robin Strobel

"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming ‘Wow! What a Ride!’”

—Hunter S. Thompson

This morning, while wandering through my many blogs I read for my newsletter, ( I happened on my Martingale Press blog where there was a dedication to Robin Strobel. She was, it appears, a valuable member of the Martingale team, who passed away this past December.

While reading the wonderful stories that her colleagues wrote, It became apparent that she was not only a great quilter, influential in the quilting community, but a person who truly gave of herself...

Her quilts were well beyond their time and like most great artists, I wondered how many people had actually heard of her beyond her community of work and home. Martingale is offering her two ebooks for free until the 25th of February, and I did download them both. (Way at the bottom of the email, there was a little note about that.) I might have missed it, but I was glued to the picture painted of this wonderful person that will be greatly missed by her quilting community.

Here's a link to the blog, so you can read about her too...

Thanks Martingale for the opportunity to meet Robin!

Friday, February 15, 2013

1:26 am

I am making this a habit... I know! But at least it is earlier and I haven't gone to sleep versus 4:00 am and I am just waking up.

I sent out the February newsletter tonight. It's new and improved. And it's finished for another month. But as I sit here writing this I am thinking of all the things I wish I had done differently and will do differently next month.

I was very surprised when I realized that I had almost 50 subscribers. I have someone from France, the UK and Australia. The other 47 are a combination of my friends who I forced into subscribing, my family who felt obligated and some unsuspecting people who are receiving it whether they want to or not...LOL

I need to sleep! Check it out if you like!

Monday, February 11, 2013

"It's A Good Thing!"

I am having so much fun with this new thing that really is an old thing that I just rediscovered!

A few weeks ago I came across something I really liked at Quilt Obsession so I messaged her and found out she has been using Inklingo!
Inklingo Free Shape Collection

I bought an apple core pattern there a few years ago, but never did it (actually I forgot about it) so I went to the site and browsed around and bought her "Rose Star Pattern" and have been having a ball with it. It's so fun to have a little hand sewing project, although I could be doing it by machine.

The fabrics I choose
 I am really enjoying the block and although I am not totally pleased with my fabric choices, I think it will be pretty non the less. I suspect it will be the front of a bag when I am done, but I can't confirm that as yet.

My printed piece.
See those stitching lines.
Makes everything easy!

The printing went fairly well. I had one mishap and of course it was on the white fabric. Must have been an errant thread because it created quite a jam.

Almost done.
At any rate... subscribe to my newsletter and read all about Linda as she is my feature Blogger this month, I choose her because she is Canadian and a quilting entrepreneur and I would love to help her build her customer base. Her patterns aren't expensive and they are all very easy to do and her instructions are detailed and easy to follow. I can't imagine how much time they save you and unlike paper pieced projects, there seems to be very little fabric waste. And they are all down loadable... instant gratification!!!! Love it.

PLUS -  I needed to make a bag to carry the pieces in.  Remember these bags.  I made a few last week and have a couple more in the works this week. LOL. I am so hooked on these bags and I get to practice my machine Quilting! (which is horrible. what a learning curve going from the Gammil long arm to the domestic machine. But I shall persevere)

I still need to finish the binding... boo hoo!

I had some "mile-a-minute" blocks that I made a few years ago which I lost interest in really fast and they will make some great little bags. I think I have about 6 more, so you will see them in the future.

you can see the block on the back
and my quilting (which needs to improve!)

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Play date with Bernina

Yesterday, after a 24 hour burst of nature, ( we got about 17 inches of snow), I travelled 2 hours (on some pretty treacherous roads)to my Bernina dealer (here's a shout out to "Art of Fabric" in Pickering, Ontario) for a class on some exciting new Bernina products!

Diane from Bernina Canada, was there to tell us about the Cutwork, Crystal Works and Paint Works software. It was pretty amazing stuff.

I have had the Cutwork software for some time and I was amazed at all the new stuff I learned. Then Diane demoed the add on tool, Paint Works worked. It is absolutely mind boggling how I now have the capability to draw a picture on fabric using my machine and textile markers.

Then to really "blow my mind". Diane showed us how to use crystal works. This tool in conjunction with the Cutwork software allows you to design a placement template to apply heat set crystals to anything you can iron. I am not a blingy person, but I ordered this tool, because I could see loads of other uses for it, including making templates for quilting and hand beading.

It was an exciting day and I was very glad I went! I can't wait to get home and turn on my machine!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

WIP Wednesday

Busy day today.
1.  I cut my nickels that I traded for at Nifty's on Monday night into China AsterWedges.

2. Sorted them into light medium and darks!

3. Sewed the wedges into points.

China Aster Wedges

Hexi`s for Christmas Table Cloth

4. Cut out more hexi's for my Christmas tablecloth.

5. Sewed the scraps from the wedges into blocks.

Hexi Orb
6. Made a background block for my Classic Santa
7. Looked at my hexi orb... no quilting today!

Hexi Center
8.Finished my Hexis Center (not sure what it is going to end up being).

9.Added more product to my web store.

10. Blogged!

11. Worked on my Newsletter.

12. Went to bed!

Monday, February 4, 2013

My Online store

My Online Store is up!   Yeah

So much work to get it going. And I still have a long way to go.

Check it out.

Notion Nanny's Store