Saturday, May 30, 2009

Jess & a Yard Sale & a Concert

Now that Jess has her quilt, I can tell you a little more about her and the blue and white quilt. Jess is a year older than Julia and lives across the street. She's a really nice girl, so I was always happy when she came over to play. She has two brothers and they all play hockey. I had never been to a hockey game until we went to see her play on the high school team (mostly boys).

Anyway, Jess received the Sacrament of Confirmation last night and I was her sponsor! I almost cried on our way up to the altar, but I held it together. I did cry last year when she asked me if I would be her sponsor. It is quite an honor, so I didn't hesitate to say yes. I started working on the quilt almost immediately after she asked me. Pulling fabrics (her favorite color is blue), thinking about the design, cutting, piecing.

When she came over on Wednesday, the quilt was on the back of the couch, waiting for binding! Did she have any idea it was for her? Nope. She was totally surprised. It was a blessed event and I was so happy to share it with her.

After our late night out, Julia and I were up bright and early for our troop yard sale today. The weather was perfect and we earned quite a bit of money for our trip to Savannah, Georgia. It was fun to talk to our customers about Girl Scouts and Juliette Low and Savannah. We got some hot tips on what to do and where to go.

Oh... and what about Pete's school band concert on Thursday? This may be the best photo I have of him drumming and it's his back! Gotta love the red Converse high tops with the tuxedo shirt! As a surprise finale, the 7th and 8th grade bands played Wipe Out, complete with a drum battle. (Pete won!) So much fun!!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend,

Thursday, May 28, 2009

A Winner and a Finished Quilt

Jackie has won Julia's Silver Award Giveaway! Yay! Julia will be back in a few weeks with a challenge for you to help with her project. Thanks for your support!

I finished the gift quilt today, with a full day to spare!
I can't tell you exactly who it is for just yet, just in case.

I did some things I'm really happy with, and a few things I won't do again.
Every quilt is a learning experience.

We need to run to Pete's school concert.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Guest Blogger & Giveaway!

Introducing my first guest blogger, my awesome daughter, Julia!

Hey Blogland! I know you've heard a lot about me but never actually heard from me so I'm pretty excited.

Right now I'm working on my Girl Scout Silver Award Project called Sewing for Soldiers. My plan is to make 2 Quilts of Valor and to spread the word about the Quilts of Valor Foundation. The Quilts of Valor Foundation gives quilts to injured soldiers. Their goal is to give every soldier who has been injured in the War on Terror a Quilt of Valor (QOV).

So I did a little research when I started my project. One website said there are an estimated 100,000 injured soldiers from Iraq alone. Another website said that a 2003 survey found over 21 MILLION quilters in the United States. I'm pretty sure that 21,000,000 is greater than 100,000, so we should be able to meet that goal.

To get started, I'm posting a giveaway. Go to the Quilts of Valor website to learn more about how you can get invloved, then leave us a comment and you'll be entered to win one of my mom's star lapel pins. If you've already made a QOV or 2, let us know and you'll be entered too. The drawing will be after school on Thursday, so you can leave a comment until then.

Once I get farther in my project, I'll be back to tell you some ways you can participate and help me with my project.

Thanks for your support. Have a beautiful Memorial Day and God Bless America.

Friday, May 22, 2009

A Great Mail Day and a Trip to the Beach

First off, the mail. I ordered more Boy Scout fabric from Alderwood Quilts and had to buy a couple of goodies for myself, too. Sue is super speedy with shipping... I just ordered these on Wednesday! The cute purple with shimmering polka dots was a free fat quarter. Thanks, Sue!

I got my second postcard from the Carol Doak postcard swap.
Thank you, Ruth! I'm loving all the orange today!

To the beach!
The sand between our toes,
the soothing sound of the waves,
the beach roses on the dunes ready to burst into bloom
can only mean one thing.
Summer is coming!

Stay tuned for a guest blogger and giveaway coming very soon!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Quilting Early

This quilt will be a gift at the end of the month and most of the quilting is already done! Not procrastinating? Who, me? Maybe I'm turning over a new leaf.

I used blue thread on the blues- a swirl in the squares and a heart in the triangles. White thread is stippled on the white and cream pieces. I haven't stippled in years. It's OK. I'm thinking with all the curvy quilting in the body of the quilt, I'll try some straight, diagonal lines in the borders.

Pete's goal for the track and field season was to qualify for the state meet. We're really proud of him for making it! Here he is throwing the discus, just a few hours before leaving for the class trip to Washington, DC.

The goldfinches have arrived home for the summer. My sister-in-law in North Carolina is annoyed that she has all these songbirds in her yard in the winter, when they are drab looking. As soon as they start to brighten up, they head north to our house!

It's suddenly warm and sunny. It looks like a beach day!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Monday, Monday

I made 8 more nine-patches this morning for the Three by Three swap. I wasn't crazy about the other ones I made, so I dug out some more Mark Lipinski fabric. I like these better, so I'll get them in the mail today.

The other swap I'm participating in is a postcard exchange through Carol Doak's Yahoo group. Here's the first postcard I received from Sharon. It came through the mail beautifully! I'd better get moving on the 3 I need to make! So do you want to know what a small quilting world this is? I've driven past Sharon's street several times on my way to my cousin's church in rural NY state. We'll be going there in June for Anna's baptism, so I might just deliver Sharon's postcard!

A couple of my quilts came home this week, which was odd. First, the Washington raffle quilt was returned because they canceled the raffle. I have no idea what to do with it now. The label is pieced into the back!

Then, I got a call from the wellness center I attended several years ago. From 2001 to 2003, I lost 51.5 pounds with their help, so I made them a quilt called Healthy Hearts. There are 51 and a half (I thought the half was clever) paper-pieced hearts made with 52 different purple fabrics. The center is remodeling and going with a new color scheme, so they called to ask if I wanted the quilt back. I have a miniature version that I had kept for myself, but I was happy that they offered me the big one. It's a little faded, but not in bad shape. It took me 6 years, but I was able to find all 51 pounds! It would be good to be healthy again. I need a new plan.

I noticed in my last post that I included pictures of Josh and Rob, but none of my own kids. Here's what they did last weekend.

Julia played trumpet in a jazz concert at the Elks Lodge. It was a lovely evening and I'm so proud of her for sticking with the jazz band. They played my favorite song, Fly Me to the Moon. We decided she needs a box to stand on so she can wear flats and be as tall as the other trumpters.

Pete went camping in Connecticut with his Boy Scout troop. This is his Stewie Griffin impression from Family Guy. What can I say- he's a goof. They had a bonfire competition with the Girl Scouts in the camp site across the street. Not surprisingly, the boys won. We'd kick their butts in campfire cooking! They topped off their structure with a Yankee cap they found in the woods. They like fire. (One of the girls called Pete last night. hee, hee)

Have a wonderful week,

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Take Me Out to the Ball Games

While sitting at a baseball field this afternoon, Julia and I counted up all the baseball games I went to this week. The grand total...
7 games in 6 days!
There is no other place I'd rather be in the spring.

Josh pitched well for the high school junior varsity team last night.

And today we cheered on our friend Rob.

I did find some time to sew yesterday and whipped up one of these origami bags. Too fun!

In the garden today...

Does anything smell better than lilacs and lilies of the valley?

Happy Day!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Moving On

I shipped a pin order to Kedar Quilts yesterday. I always second-guess my color choices for some of them, but they look pretty good as a group. The monkey wrench/churn dash is a new design for me and I really like it. I wonder if there is a difference between monkey wrench and churn dash, or are they the same block?

Last night marked my last Girl Scout leader meeting as Service Unit Manager, a volunteer position I have held for 4 years. A new-ish leader told me that she assumed I was a paid employee. I've been paid by the smiles on the girls' faces at our community events. Hee hee. Did I just say that with a straight face?! Yes, I do love the girls and it has been a joy to meet hundreds of Girl Scouts and work with scores of dedicated volunteers.

Our Service Team is awesome! Don't they look happy (that the year is almost over)? Since they all ROSE to the challenge of volunteering beyond their own troops, I decided to make them rose pens.

Julia helped me make them, of course, beacause she is the most incredible daughter and Girl Scout, ever! I presented Julia with a little gift last night, but couldn't make my speech because I started to cry. It's not easy being a leader's daughter, and being the SUM's daughter is 10 times harder. She is so great with the younger girls and always willing to help. I wish I had taken a picture of her surrounded by Daisies and Brownies. Too cute.

The pens are so easy to make. Let's see if I can find a tutorial...
Here's one. (I glue first, then wrap)
Ooooh, but go look what Arlette made!

I can't find a tutorial that shows exactly the way we do it, so maybe we'll write our own. They make really inexpensive, fun gifts for teachers, girl friends, grandmothers...

Well, it's time to move on.
To another quilting project (BOM's and swaps)
To another craft project (crocheted earrings)
To another Girl Scout challenge (Savannah!)


Wednesday, May 13, 2009

My Colors?

Your rainbow is intensely shaded violet, red, and pink.


What is says about you: You are a passionate person. You appreciate beauty and craftsmanship. You are patient and will keep trying to understand something until you've mastered it. You are a good listener and your friends are glad to have you around in difficult times.

Find the colors of your rainbow at

Mid-Week Musings

I've been finishing up a batch of pins to send to Kedar Quilts in Maine. If you find yourself in western Maine this summer, stop in and see Margaret. I love the pile of bits and pieces that accumulates next to my machine when I paper-piece.

We've been to a few ball games already this week. On Monday night, Julia and Pete played at the same time, at the same park, on adjacent fields. Sitting on the bleachers at the baseball field, all I needed to do was spin around to see the softball field.

Josh was sweet to keep me company at the games. We had a nice conversation about baseball, my Girl Scouts, school and summer. He went over to the other field to take a few pictures for me. He told Julia she was "lighting fast" running to 1st base. See the maroon blur?
There has been an osprey nest on the light pole at this field for several years. We'll try to get some shots of the birds as the season progresses. They are really fun to watch after the chicks hatch and the parents start bringing fish to the nest.

In other birding news, the Orioles have come home for the summer. I saw a catbird in the yard last week, so I knew the Orioles would soon follow. We saw the male fly by on Mother's Day, so we put out the orange and were soon rewarded with this beautiful site.

So, I found out that Josh reads my blog in computer class with Julia's friend from the swim team. Hi, Josh & Emiko! They find it amusing that I call Josh "the boyfriend." I won't do that anymore. He's a really good kid and we enjoy having him around. I love this picture of Julia & Josh that was taken in Hershey before the music festival. It's the closest they'll get to a prom picture for a couple of years.

I'm off to finish the pins for Margaret and get them in the mail today. Have a great day!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Weekend Update

I hope you all had a lovely Mother's Day. We had a sunny, relaxing day.

My Girl Scouts did a little camping this weekend. It was more laid back than usual and we really enjoyed each other's company. Here are some highlights:

Full Moon over the pond

Tall trees and platform tents

Raindrops on White Pine


Scary Spider!

We're getting betting at folding the flag, but we haven't achieved military precision just yet.

I'm always inspired to recycle more and waste less after a trip to camp. Remember: It's easy being green!