Friday, September 29, 2006

Prickle Me This.

My cherries are completed, and they're cute, well, cute enough. Prickling isn't going to be my next big hobby. I'm not saying it wasn't fun, it just wasn't, well, fun enough.

But when it comes to fun, I found finishing the picot edge on this purse fun and satisfying! Harder to watch TV when you have to count stuff and pay attention, so I really missed a lot of CSI last night. But still, I love love LOVE that picot edge. I don't know that I see myself as a knitter, you know, hardcore knitter, but maybe more like the occasional knitter.

This is really more my thing. And maybe not just quilting, but sewing in general. While I keep exploring new things, I always come back to my sewing machine.

Later.. Here's the second attempt at the cherries. I think these are cuter, smaller, more compact. I might add a bow for interest. Still not my favorite thing ever, and when the instructions say sharp, they really mean it.

Still, they are cute...

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Crazy Dog Meme

Sandy tagged me recently to do a meme about 5 weird things about yourself or your pets.. I thought it was safest to go with pets. ( I don't need to scare you off right away with my own wierd things..)
I have two Norwich Terriers. They're sweet little dogs, Rocket, on the left , is the boy, Peep on the right is our girl. How we came to have these two dogs is a long story, best saved for another time. Believe me, that falls into the category of weird things about me.

1. Rocket enjoys wearing clothes. He doesn't want to take them off. Peep gets jealous if she doesn't have clothes on as well. Not that we dress them often. We just happened to be going to the snow and got them some sweaters to keep them warm. I know. Crazy talk.

2. Maybe this falls under wierd things about me. Lets don't persue it.

3, 4 and 5.. all about Peep. She loves carrots. She eats them, rolls on them, carrys them around, and will steal Rocket's. Carrots. Yum. She also will not drink water inside the house. Don't understand this at all. To top this off, outside, she won't drink out of a normal dog waterdish, so I have a big plastic pot saucer and she does her drinking there. I used to have saucers under all plants but turns out that grimier the water, the more she likes it. That can't be good. Lastly, she won't eat her food in the kitchen in the dog eating area. She has to eat on a little rug in the living room when we're there. I guess her eating requires an audience.

So there you go. Tag yourself if you'd like to share some wierd!

A little of this and a little of that.

Good morning! Its a nice kind of overcast day here and I love it. The air is cool and actually smells damp and fall like. I'm having a lazy morning. Just so you don't think I've been busy, here's what's gone on since we last met: You can see I've had The Prickler out and I have one little cherry and a leaf going. It was fun and took practically no time at all to prickle up. I'll do a couple of more today so I can make my pin. I'll probably have to do a new leaf. The instructions show a pin with a double leaf but I thought I was so smart and would do one leaf .. well now that I try to attach my leaf and cherry I can see the wisdom in their double leaf plan. Which I suppose is just one of many reasons there are books on this subject and I am not the author of them! I've also been unsewing those yellow triangles off the little rail fence blocks. Decided I didn't like where that whole project was going but still loved the little blocks, so during TV that needs to be watched, I work on that. Plus the quadrille pad is out, I saw an old quilt in a magazine that I liked and I'm working on drafting it out. We'll see if anything becomes of that.
In the meantime when I'm watching TV out in the living room I keep my little knitting project handy. This is my purse kit and I finally got to knitting on that. I'm not the best knitter ever and didn't want to mess it up since you had to keep track of things more than any project I've done before. Plus there was a couple of things I've never done, but somewhere on a blog I found the best knitting help site. Now I can finish that picot edge.
I'm going to try and be a tad productive around here today, although since it's so late already, its a bit hard to believe! Have a swell day my friends!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

And that my friends...

is a (blurry) pile of completed blocks!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

A little something new.

Back when I first discovered the Kitty Craft site and I was having PamKittyMornings right and left, I saw this tool. Ok, I'll be honest, I saw it but Elizabeth really read all about it and got us all excited about it. The Kitty site says it's for "Prickling" and lets face it, don't we all want to prickle something? I know I do. I wish I could get the exact quote but I can't select anything on KittyCraft so it will have to wait. (Oh come on, you know you want to prickle, don't deny it.)
We finally got the tools in at the shop, of course they were on back-order. Lets face it, all the cool kids are doing it. I prickled a few things, but you know me an my attention span.. I set it aside and didn't pick it back up till the new Indygo Junction book called Needle Felting came out and I saw the cool cherry pin. The book is kind of a dud in my mind, as far as projects go. Just not my thing. But it had a lot of good information and techniques so I'm glad I picked it up. This weekend Bird Brain was at the show and I picked up some wool roving from them. They've got some really fun wool things there, I mean wait till you see that squirrel. I just scored some tiny styrofoam balls for my cherries so I have everything I need to get going. I'd rather sit here and visit with you though. Then, before I prickle anything, I'm finishing those blocks.
Seriously, I am.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Quilt Show

I took these photos in the afternoon Saturday. We rode back Sunday on our bikes, parking is limited, and tried for some more, but it's just too sunny and everything is super washed out, at best. Yesterday's don't really show the quilts as much as the atmosphere. Which is lovely. Have a wonderful day!

Saturday, September 23, 2006


They say you can't buy happiness but I have to disagree. This is my favorite thread EVER. Imagine my delight at the size of this spool. If you ever have a chance to try this thread, I'd say do it. Just knowing this thread was in a bag waiting for me at the end of the day kept me going. Show day remember, and it was HOT in the store. I could not cool off for the life of me.
My luck didn't end with the spool of thread, I was able to leave a little bit early and take in the show, which was wonderful. While still warm out, there was a breeze and in the shade of the giant oaks it was very pleasant. I'll have photos soon of some of the quilts later. But the thread.. be still my heart.

Friday, September 22, 2006

It was a day.

It was no PamKitty Day but it was ok. One of those days that just has a mind of its own and you gotta roll with it. So I did. Got some this and that kind of stuff done, you know, stuff that needs doing and is boring. (Laundry people, boring laundry.) The relentless in and out of the dogs. They sense weakness and they know when you're vulnerable. Bark bark bark.. they're out. Bark, one is in via the kitchen slider, bark the other calls from the bedroom slider. Bark we're lonely please come in here and watch TV. Bark I think we hear some children coming down the street. Bark there's the woman with the ugly dog. Bark.

You all know how it is. I drank a lot of coffee then a lot of iced tea. Both of which have their own agenda. Lets face it, I just walked around the house most of the day.

In between everything I made a Mary Jane's Farm bake-over. I ordered some of her mix and finally got around to using it. Mmm peaches.

It was tasty, inspite of the fact it looked like something that they showed on CSI during the marathon all day on A&E. Which I enjoyed a lot, because helps me settle into do some sewing and TV watching all in one...

I love it when there are marathons. But I didn't get that much done. Lots of pinning and unsewing and in general I'm not that excited about these blocks. I love the look and I know it will be cute when done but the blocks aren't that well constructed. Off here and there by bits that I know I could fix but somehow I just don't want to. That ruins it a tiny bit for me. In general people won't notice but I notice. Do you ever feel like that? Like you said "oh well" one too many times?

I decided that I had to finish this last set of units before I went to bed. I have one part left to assemble and add, but I'm so much farther and that will be so fast. Because yahoo, no pinning. I love no pinning. So here's the proof, I really did get more done on these blocks. And all that's left is to sew rectangles onto those little geese units you see and get them on the block. Well all that's left of the blocks anyway. But still, progress my friends. You can't deny it! This might actually become something other than little bits of fabric that keep getting moved all over.

But don't hold your breath.

PamKitty Hangover

Here are my leftover photos from yesterday's post. I could not let blogger get the best of me, so I tried on and off all evening to get these to load. Ahhh free blogger with all your quirks. Why do you toy with me?
The photo of the sign is pretty poor. I love to drive and take photos out the window. Except right now my windows are so spotted from the sprinklers I have to roll them down and sometimes I don't notice things in time to get a good photo. My garage is home to many things, sadly, not my car. I just looked up and saw the strawberry and thought ohmygosh even the signage is darling. This is the same center with the Japanese market and bookstore. There were other businesses as well, but those two were the standouts.

My magazines are lovely, as you can see from the their front and back photos. I really love the colorful backs. I would love to have more Lecien fabrics. Maybe at quilt market they'll have some more bundles of Miss March at sample spree. I should make a note. Because I love Lecien but don't love the higher cost.

What will I do today. I should do more piecing on that red and white project. Apparently saying that I'm going to do it and doing it are two different things. Well who could blame me for wanting to have a PamKittyDay? Really WHO COULD??? What I should do today is have a peaceful calm day, because Saturday is the quilt show and I know it will be a super busy day. Will I see you there?

Thursday, September 21, 2006


Today was a PamKittyDay! But not the whole day spent sitting on the computer looking at Japanese Craft books on the Kitty-Craft site but GOING TO AN ACTUAL STORE AND LOOKING AT THEM!!!! I kid you not my friends! A real store. Jackie mentioned buying some Japanese Craft magazines in San Jose the other day and I pretty much freaked out!! I mean San Jose! Its close!! So I (probably scared her) asked her to give me the info, which of course (out of fear) she immediately gave to me! Wow!! I know. Can you believe it?

So right off since I was going that way, I told Frankie I'd meet up with her to give her the Blackberry power cord she left at home on her visit. I pulled up to her car and passed the charger her way! Don't they look happy! And it's not like I ditched them, they had class in a few minutes. So, that's Frankie driving, Candace and Garrett. Does Candace look just a tad familiar? She was a model early in this season's Project Runway! I know!!! Celebrity sighting! ON MY BLOG!!! And Garrett... is he the cutest? What a smile!

So I grabbed a cup of coffee and headed back up to the Land of Japanese Craft Books! Latte and a book on tape.. I'll pretty much drive anywhere! Mapquest told me just how to get to the address but unfortunately in my excitement I failed to note the finer points of Jackie's email and pulled into the shopping center and didn't remember which was the name of the center and which was the name of the store. And I didn't remember it was a bookstore .. I mean it could have been a market right? And the market was big and named one of the names I remembered so I walked through several times but not a magazine in sight. Hmm. Back in the parking lot I looked at my other options and what I thought was a video store really was a BOOKstore. And DUH, the same street number from the email.

What a great store. Nice, clean, light, lots of room. And lots of books and periodicals. I walked the whole store once or twice before I found what I was looking for and it was the MOTHER LODE of books and magazines. I probably was there about an hour and a half. I ended up with three magazines. I can't wait to pour over them. Photos tomorrow, because Blogger thinks one photo is enough.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Busy Day

Its a busy day today! Everyone will be up and out and back and out again! Frankie is home and we're playing Musical Cars! She needs a regular maintenance visit for her vehicle. With class starting at 4pm today, she had time for a trip up to have dinner at home last night and then get her service appointment this morning. Bret can pick her up and bring her back home and she can drop me at work to take my car for hometown errands. I'll drop her at her car in the afternoon and she'll hit the road back home in time for class.

Is there any doubt she's Daddy's Girl??? Yup, Sweet 16!!

This picture was taken a few days later after she'd passed her driving test! I can't believe she's been driving all these years! In California you can get your permit at 15, so she's been behind the wheel for nearly four years! We got in a lot of good experience that permit year, she drove me almost everywhere. I think we did pretty well together, but I'm not sure that she'd agree.
I love that she comes and goes. I see her enough to not miss her too much.

Not that old thing!

Yes I am still working on that red and white quilt. I'm caught up on samples and other pieced projects so I figured I'd get back to this. I really did love the inspiration for it, which was a quilt in a home dec book. I just saw a bit of the quilt in a photo and decided I needed to make my own version of it. The blocks are nearly done, and then its all about deciding on posts and sashing.
One thing that's hard about working in a quilt shop is that you're constantly being bombarded with darling new things. New patterns, new fabric, new books, new ideas, other people's projects.. you name it. Monday I go in and see something new, buy all the bits and pieces and then Wednesday I go back, with half a project on the table and see something new that's inspirational and I want to make that. After the 15 or so years of working in quilt shops I've pretty much got myself in control (like I said pretty much) but sometimes things get the better of me. This week though, I'm trying to make myself just work on this project and get the blocks completed. I even cleared off (which really means shoved stuff around) my cutting table to get ready for cutting the sashing strips.
I'll let you know how it goes! Have a happy day my friends!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Life is Good.

Binding Day

Today is binding day. I have three quilts that need binding, two sets of binding are done, and one ready to be sewn together. Number one on the list is this quilt. I have to have that into the shop this week for the show. Then as a bonus I found the binding for this quilt that I had already made. And in the search, I found the binding for this quilt, which has been in the almost but not quite done pile. I thought it was a lovely soft quilt and we have a friend with a new baby girl, so I think this will be perfect. I love making things and its even better when I can find a home for them. Bret was the Best Man at this couple's wedding a few years ago, so now we'll have a special gift for their wee babe.
I'm hoping there is some nice TV on today to watch while doing some hand sewing. The weather is also very nice today, so I could sit outside. Endless possibilities.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Happy Day!

Sometimes you just feel good you know? Like things are going well and even though there are frustrations you just work through it. Or get over it, or move on from it. Whatever it takes. There is always something to be thankful for..
Like this

Or maybe this

and certainly this..

Like who wouldn't love to have a tray filled with ice? And a delightful daughter who's thrilled to have discovered a new Home Goods you've never been to? And not only that be willing to go into it! Seriously! I'm not kidding!! And of course who doesn't love a beautiful Monarch butterfly that comes into their yard like a little blessing? And then take pictures while you're on the phone talking to your mother-in-law and still have them turn out!!!! Its a great day my friends. Live it up!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Ice Ice Baby Be Cold

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Cool Breeze

Good morning! Today is going to be a slow moving day. The weather is cool and breezy and I am happy as a clam. A clam in a cool breezy house that is. Yesterday my quilt came back from the quilter. This quilt was made as a sample for the mystery quilt we put on at our retreat each spring. It wasn't as popular as the quilts before, and we have quilt kits left. I had thought that this cabin design would fit our weekend at the camp. I selected fabrics that reminded me of the colors of the cabins, and the surrounding areas. The quilt is quilted with an all over design which is fine. I will get the binding on it and get it back to the shop. We'll hang it up next weekend and hopefully the kits will sell. While I usually like to work on a smaller scale, I think its a fun quilt and it was easy enough to make. Its the perfect size for sofa time.
My other two tasks today are fun, and not that fun. Fun will be taking photos for two of Elizabeth's new patterns. She has the large quilts photographed by a professional photographer.
The other will be cleaning the refrigerator . Finally after 23 years of living here I am getting a fridge with an ICE MAKER. Ice 24/7 my friends. At my beck and call. A treat many of you take for granted I'm sure. We had new pipes installed a couple of years ago, and with that the plumbing for water at the refrigerator. And tomorrow is the day of deliverance.. deliverance from an ice maker free world. And a bit of salvation for those family members (who shall not be named) who take ice from the trays and leave just one cube. AND FACE MY WRATH.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Another Runner down.

I finally completed what should be the last runner before the show. We'll see, there's still a week to go. It was easy, all the parts went together so nicely. Those squares on point around the edge couldn't have been more perfect, right up until I sewed them to the center. You'd think I'd never sewn before the way those points would not match up to the star points. Those kinds of points have thwarted me in the past, pointy star points to squares on point. A pox on you bumpy crappily matched points. Then while trying to press it into submission, I get those weird creases in stuff, they're not really creases, but just bad iron reaction. I don't know what to call it. Iron ruination.
Of course a photo always looks about ten thousand times nicer. Especially when you can 'crop the crap' right out of the photo. I'm a long time crap cropper. Its a skill I've had to hone since I have so much crap that needs cropping.
I hope you earthling have a splendid day. I'm off to work. Tonight is a staff meeting to discuss the show at Alden Lane next weekend. Its a huge event. If any of you are attending and see us at the shop, take pity.

Rita's Roses

Last August Sandy's book Quick and Easy Romantic Quilts was published! Yeah for her!! I love her work. Pacific International Quilt Festival was just around the corner and we wanted to have a sample from the book for our booth there. I had a few pieces Moda's Fruit Cocktail fabric and a bunch of my favorite fabrics around the shop, and I came up with this version of Rita's Roses. I love the pieced blocks in this quilt, and of course I love Rita, Sandy's mom. It was the perfect fit.
The quilt is partially quilted, I got the ditch work and borders completed, but left the blocks for later, so I could take my time. The quilt was displayed at the shop up till a month of so ago, and I finally brought it home.
Like a lot of people I have a hard time figuring out what to do in the alternate solid blocks. I'll just stitch in the ditch around the pieced block.. in fact when laying this out I was surprised I hadn't already done that. When working on the binding for Elizabeth's tulip quilt, I noticed a lovely little design she was using in her squares, so I think I'm going to look for a similar design to use in my alternate blocks. I'll use the Golden Threads paper to draw my design on and stitch through. It really works well.
But as usual, I have lofty plans for getting right on stuff and then my attention is lured away by something else. Hmm, what will it be this time? Until then, I have this quilt draped across Frankie's bed, which is across from the sewing room, where I can enjoy it (and not notice that its not done!)

Monday, September 11, 2006

One more cup of coffee please!

Yawn... stayed up reading Embroidered Truths by Monica Ferris last night. Way late and the whole thing. It was soo good I couldn't put it down. I really enjoy this mystery series about a woman who owns a needlework shop in Excelsior, Minnesota. I have been to Excelsior many times on my visits to Minnesota so that makes it ever more fun. If you like mysteries, I recommend this series.
On the sewing front, I did get my runner done, well the top anyway, still have to quilt it. I was trying to pick something easy again that I could whip right up but this time, it was a little harder. Lots of matching, lots of triangles, so lots more time. Have to confess lots of those points are off, but hopefully the overall look will be pleasing. When its done I'll take a picture. The fabrics are pretty and it goes well with a lot of the Nicol Sayre gift items we have.
Here are the little preview shots from the quilts by Elizabeth. Both are so pretty. They're off to the photographer this week I think. Thanks Elizabeth for letting me post these photos!

Well my friends, its time to get this show on the road, so have a fine day!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

San Francisco Open Your Pearly Gates

Here are some shots taken off the Alameda County Sheriff's boat coming thru the Golden Gate and Bay Bridge yesterday morning around 10am. The crew invited Frankie to ride back up to Alameda from Monterey from their training mission. It was a rocky ride along the coast but once they came thru the Gate she said it was calm and nice. What a great experience and I'm pea green with envy!

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Coffee please!

Fall is beginning to show itself a bit around here. Yesterday was lovely, breezy, cool. The change in light was apparent. I just loved it. These aren't glamorous pictures of the backyard, but you can see the leaves collecting. We have a liquid amber tree and its leaves are so pretty. The tree is still totally covered in green leaves but a few are sneaking off. Its the season of sweeping, there is something so introspective about sweeping. And this year something aerobic, as the broom my husband recently bought weighs a ton!

The bird feeders were empty, so I went out and filled them up. I'll have happy birds and squirrels again. I even put out a dish of grapes past their prime, the squirrels love those and don't care that they are a little mushy. There was time for one cup of coffee out back on the swing .

But now it's time for sewing. And more coffee. I managed to finish that runner in record time so I picked out more fabric for another runner.. this one will be a little more time consuming but still easy. I'll have photos later. I also picked up another quilt from Elizabeth, it needs binding and when its done she gave me permission to give a sneak peek at a bit of it! So maybe tomorrow I'll have those photos.

Have a wonderful day my friends! Keep busy, be happy!

Friday, September 08, 2006

Shout out to Ellyn

Just a little shout out to Ellyn Frankie's new friend at school. She's a fun new friend who likes milkshakes and deserves her own little blog entry to say Hey! We're glad you're on our side!

I'm glad Frankie has found a great new friend at school. That kind of thing is important. I met my friend Sharon in college, first years in the dorms! She was a junior and I was a freshman. Even though we no longer live across the hall or even across town we're still friends and keep in touch by email. Sometimes its scary to realize we've been friends for 34 years now.

In 34 years I hope Frankie and Ellyn will look back on this photo of their first weeks in the dorms and have a good laugh!

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