Welcome to Gramma's Quilting Room.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Making The Plan...

...Working The Plan

It's not always easy being me. I joke about my granddaughter being a jumping bean and deep down inside, I know she gets it from me. I can get sidetracked faster than anyone I know! This morning, I made a plan. I need to focus on my plan. I have a couple errands I have to run this afternoon but before I go anywhere, I need to do a couple things. Like laundry and quilt.

This quilt was loaded yesterday. This morning after Ernie left and after a couple cups of coffee and a load into the washer, I went in and warmed up the machine. It is now quilted. Nothing fancy, just a nice meander. There is nothing wrong with a nice meander. It is now laying at the sewing machine waiting for the binding to be sewn on and then finished with the machine. Then to the washer and dryer (after the clothes are done) and then it will await it's new home.
(Edit: The quilt is finished and in the washer.....Yeah for another finish! Next!!!)

I need to do some work in the garden and hopefully the yard will dry out enough to mow. If not, I may have to get a goat. If I have any time later today, I will work on this. I also will work on this tonight while I watch Project Runway and whatever else I have waiting for me.

I will not work on either of these today! No, they are not in the plan. Now I must hurry and put them out of sight so I don't get sidetracked.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

How Can I Blame Her?

How can I blame Judy L for putting me on a path I should not be on??? It's not her fault I am such a follower......she shows socks and asks if we want a knit along.....of course I want a knit along! I love to knit socks. But I have other projects that need attention! I have an afghan that is half done. I can't start knitting socks right now! Wanna bet???

So last night, instead of working on my afghan, I get out my Knit 2 Socks At A Time book, my 2 sets of circular needles, 2 skeins of yarn. I'm going to watch Biggest Loser, cast on socks and try again to do this method. But I got so frustrated, I gave up. Instead of tearing out my cast on, I got out 2 sets of metal double pointed needles and transferred my socks to them. I worked on my 2 socks until the ribbing was done on both pair. Then I started the fun part......the leg. After a while, the news was almost over and I had to get to bed, I get up at 4:30 and I couldn't see any more!

This morning I decided to go to town and get a new die for my GO! Cutter (I deserved one after yesterday!). While I was shopping around JoAnn's, I had to look at the yarn. I had to, it was on sale and yes, more came home with me along with the round flower die! Then I saw the knitting needles. I love using the Clover bamboo needles and saw they had size 2 double pointed but only had the 5" size. ..I use 7" metal needles for my socks. They were on sale, so I bought myself 2 pair-knowing if I didn't like them, I could return them.

After transferring the first pair to the bamboos, I sat there and knitted for probably too long. I LOVE those 5" needles! Love them!!! So I now have another pair of socks in the works, yarn for the next afghan and yarn for a pair of wool socks. Will I have time to quilt the quilt I loaded this morning??? Not today, today I am knitting! Thank you Judy L. I love to knit socks! That's why I learned to knit.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Ugly, The Bad, The Good...

...Or Mind If I Cry???

The Ugly:
I went into our spare room this morning to put some things away. I found a 5 gallon bucket of paint had split open and was all over the floor. Before I thought to take a picture, I cried. I started to clean up the mess with a dust pan, scraping the paint into a box that I had put inside a garbage bag. Then I remembered to take a picture.

The Bad:
I haven't been in this room for over a week, so I have no clue how long it has been this way. I've been going to use this paint to paint my pantry shelves.....oh, I don't know, 2 years ago. I don't know why the bucket split but it did and it's an ugly mess. I walk by this door several times a day.....it's kept shut-we call it the scary room. How could I not smell the paint fumes???

The Good:
We haven't redone the floor in this room yet. It's been a catch all for a long time. This summer I finally got it almost all cleaned out. There isn't too much stuff on the floor where the paint spilled. Just an empty box and a plastic bin full of shirt flannel. Thank goodness it was a plastic bin! No fabric was damaged in the mess.

I bought a steam mop a couple months ago. I am going to use some old towels as my cleaning pads and clean up the rest of the paint. Then I'll have to take a trip the the garbage transfer station to get rid of the paint mess. JoAnn's isn't too far from there---I see a new GO! die in my near future!

Words of Wisdom:
Never, ever store paint in your house.

The Moral of This Story:
Always look for the good. I'm never going to paint the shelves. I get to get rid of the paint. The floor is clean. I get a new die....

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Finish And A Challenge To Me

I did it, I finished a quilt. Yeah Me! This quilt with it's fun kitty backing is headed to my cat crazy friend Donna. I do kitty care for her 4 babies when they go on short trips. She is going to be so surprised. I can't wait until it gets out of the dryer so I can take it to her this evening.

I just looked it up--I keep a list of my quilting finishes and I haven't finished anything in 2 months!! 2 months! Really? Has it been that long? I looked it up Yes, I blogged about it on July 29th. It was the crumb quilt with the dragonfly borders. I have tops done but there is a gigantic pile of them that need to be quilted so they don't count as finishes.

I'd like to thank Barb at Paint Creek Quilt for posting about her One Thing-One Week Challenge. I made a smartie comment on it about telling her to get off the computer and quilt 2 rows for her and 2 for me. Then she did it! Yeah Barb. I felt like I needed to practice what I preached and went in and got started on this one again. I'm so glad I took my own advice for a change.

Isn't it great that we have such wonderful friends in Blogland??? Now I am challenging myself to get the next one loaded and quilted this week.

Design Wall Monday

Nothing has changed on my design wall since Saturday. Nothing at all. I didn't even go into my sewing room on Sunday, not one time! It was very rainy and chilly here on Sunday so we watched tv all day long. We will not be doing that again anytime soon--my back is killing me this morning from sitting all day and moving around very little. So today will be doing things that involve movement.....like laundry, vacuuming, mopping--you know-the fun stuff.

But....I didn't just sit, I can't just sit and watch tv, I must work on something. The other day I finished an afghan and had lots of yarn leftover. Inspired by this afghan at Attic 24 (I love her stuff!!) I decided to make a throw. The picture shows it folded in half. After weighing a ball of yarn, doing a row and weighing it again, I have enough yarn left to do 2 more sets of rows and then I'll have more than enough blue to crochet a border around a few times. It's been fun working on this--it's so bright and happy.

Grab yourself a cuppa and head over to Judy L's and see her colorful design wall and then take a journey through Blogland and visit with others and their fabulous projects.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Stash Report 9.26.10

After all my GO! fun the other day with my flannel, I had go sew just a few tumblers together. This pile is what is leftover from quilt number 1 and is ready to be put up on the wall.
This is part of quilt number 1. I was only going to sew one row together and put the remaining blocks in a bin for a retreat project. Instead, I used them for when I needed a break from quilting. I would quilt for 20 minutes and then sit down for 10. So really I am making progress with the quilting. Really I am! I will have one finished today because it is raining (and Ernie wants a stay home, sit in his chair and watch movie day) and I want to quilt.

My Stash Report has hit a new milestone. Over 200 yards used is major for me! Now to get the Net Used number over 100. I think I can, I think I can!

This week's report:
Used this Week: 3.5 yards
Used Year to Date: 201 yards
Added this Week: 0 yards
Added Year to Date: 143.75 yards
Net Used for 2010: 57.25

Go to Judy L's and see her amazing numbers and how others are doing to their stash.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

More GO! Fun

As I was putting some fabric away last night, I decided to see what big scraps were left in my flannel bin. I came across this stack of squares that someone gave me quite a while ago. I planned to make them into a Disappearing Nine Patch quilt but then I had a thought! Scary I know but this is one time in a kabillion that my thought was a good one. I got out my new tumbler die and layed one of those flannel squares on and it fits. OK, it just fits but it fits. So I started carefully laying out the squares in stacks of 3 and turning them into tumblers.

It didn't take long until I had a new idea! What if I sewed some of the strips together and cut them into tumblers too??? Huh? Have I seen this before somewhere?? How funny would that look? Not too funny if there were lots of other scrappy strippy tumblers to go with them. Hmmm, then I remembered!!! Mary made a String Tumbler quilt and posted the instructions here. So it isn't my original idea but I'm still excited about it.

I think by the time I get all of my flannel scraps sewed into strips and hunks, I'll have enough for 2 or 3 small donation quilts.

I have to GO! now, I have a table full of flannel that needs my attention.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Design Wall Monday

I'm very excited about my design wall today. I started putting my bright stars together. It's kind of a slow process when my sewing time is in short spurts. I have row 1 complete with the long sashing and outer side border. Row 2 is complete laying on the sewing machine with the long sashing pinned on ready to sew.

After the weekend of firewood work-which is now complete thanks to my family!-I think I have lots of time now to get this top to the ready to quilt stage.

I'm not going anywhere today! I'm going to put soup makings in the crock pot, do some chores and sew. And if I feel like it, I might even take a nap! (But first, I'm going back to bed for a while. It's rainy and dark out this morning.)

Go to Judy L's to see her project and then visit others to see their design walls. I love Monday in Blogland.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Stash Report 9.19.10

As we continue to fill our woodshed, not as much sewing is taking place in my world. I've spent time sewing but not so much using up the stash. I only used fabric for this little quilt that will soon have a home.

But nothing will be used today. The rest of this wood pile needs to be split, loaded in trucks, unloaded and stacked into woodsheds. Now where's that ibuprofen??

This week's report:
Used this Week: 3 yards
Used Year to Date: 197.5 yards
Added this Week: 0 yards
Added Year to Date: 143.75 yards
Net Used for 2010: 53.75

Go to Judy L's and check what she and others are doing to their stash.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Fun With The GO!

Gramma has created a GO! Monster!!! When Taylor is here, I will never get to use the GO! Cutter. She has discovered how much fun it is to use and thinks she wants one of her own. I need to get more of those shape things, aka dies. I'm going to--I want the tumbler and the apple core dies. I think these will make for awesome scrappy quilts.

This morning I put the final borders on the Kitty Quilt. I have some pink flannel that will be the back and enough kitty fabric for the binding. I love what becomes of other people's leftover fabric. Thanks for not tossing it out!

Next project will be to start sewing some half square triangles together that we have cut. I have 2 plastic shoe bins-one with oodles of half square triangle pieces and the other has the 4 1/2" and 2 1/2" squares. It doesn't take long to get lots of HSTs when you are cutting 4 per layer of fabric. Should make for a fun scrappy quilt. I need to get busy!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Design Wall Monday

Wednesday is our 38th wedding anniversary. I think maybe Ernie got tired of hearing me whine about not winning a GO! Cutter. I really wanted one but decided not to spend the money. But....when it's a special occasion, we shop together and buy what we really, really want. I found out one of our major fabric centers would allow me to use the 40% off coupon on the GO! so off we GO-ed before they changed their mind. We also went to the store that sold reloading supplies for his latest venture. We ended the afternoon with an early dinner at our favorite fish place. We have the best dates!

With dinner taken care of, I had time to learn how to use my new tool. I got out the bag of pink fabric scraps that I wanted to make a baby quilt from, added some super cute cat fabric and started to cut. Then I got the brilliant idea to play with EQ7 and come up with a plan. I really do have some awesome toys/tools!

This is where I left off yesterday. I need to cut a few more squares and triangles today and then start moving blocks around. I have yet to choose an inner border but no problem, I have a bin full of light fabrics to pick from. (I just realized the fabric for this quilt cost less than $5! I love the quilter's yard sales!!)

Head on over to Judy L's, check out her dimples and then see what others are working on. I love Design Wall Monday!

But first, there are peppers to slice and put on the dehydrator. Did you see the post this morning over at Chickens in the Road/Farm Bell Recipes.......dehydrator goodness. Great minds think alike on this one. LOL

Looks like I've planned myself out a pretty fun day.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Stash Report 9.12.10

I didn't buy any fabric this week but I did win a trivet kit from Jo's Country Junction ~~Thanks Jo!! I guessed there was 1/4 yard of fabric circles in this super cute kit. It was so fun yesterday to walk up the driveway and look inside my package. What a fun way to receive mail!! I cannot wait to sit down and stitch this together.

I couldn't believe my usage added up to 13 yards! That's an amazing week for me. The top I finished from the blocks I already had used 3 yards, the remaining 10 yards is backings and bindings.

Now I have new goals for the remained of the year. I'd like to get to 250 yards used. That shouldn't be too hard..........she says with fingers crossed.

This week's report:
Used this Week: 13 yards
Used Year to Date: 194.5 yards
Added this Week: .25 yards
Added Year to Date: 143.75 yards
Net Used for 2010: 50.75

Go to Judy L's and check what she and others are doing to their stash.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Where Were You?

"Where Were You (When The World Stopped Turning)"

Where were you when the world stopped turning that September day
Out in the yard with your wife and children
Working on some stage in LA
Did you stand there in shock at the site of
That black smoke rising against that blue sky
Did you shout out in anger
In fear for your neighbor
Or did you just sit down and cry

Did you weep for the children
Who lost their dear loved ones
And pray for the ones who don't know
Did you rejoice for the people who walked from the rubble
And sob for the ones left below

Did you burst out in pride
For the red white and blue
The heroes who died just doing what they do
Did you look up to heaven for some kind of answer
And look at yourself to what really matters

I'm just a singer of simple songs
I'm not a real political man
I watch CNN but I'm not sure I can tell you
The difference in Iraq and Iran
But I know Jesus and I talk to God
And I remember this from when I was young
Faith hope and love are some good things he gave us
And the greatest is love

Where were you when the world stopped turning that September day
Teaching a class full of innocent children
Driving down some cold interstate
Did you feel guilty cause you're a survivor
In a crowded room did you feel alone
Did you call up your mother and tell her you love her
Did you dust off that bible at home
Did you open your eyes and hope it never happened
Close your eyes and not go to sleep
Did you notice the sunset the first time in ages
Speak with some stranger on the street
Did you lay down at night and think of tomorrow
Go out and buy you a gun
Did you turn off that violent old movie you're watching
And turn on "I Love Lucy" reruns
Did you go to a church and hold hands with some stranger
Stand in line and give your own blood
Did you just stay home and cling tight to your family
Thank God you had somebody to love

I'm just a singer of simple songs
I'm not a real political man
I watch CNN but I'm not sure I can tell you
The difference in Iraq and Iran
But I know Jesus and I talk to God
And I remember this from when I was young
Faith hope and love are some good things he gave us
And the greatest is love

I'm just a singer of simple songs
I'm not a real political man
I watch CNN but I'm not sure I can tell you
The difference in Iraq and Iran
But I know Jesus and I talk to God
And I remember this from when I was young
Faith hope and love are some good things he gave us
And the greatest is love

The greatest is love
The greatest is love

Where were you when the world stopped turning that September day

[ ALAN JACKSON LYRICS at www.AZLyrics.com ]

Friday, September 10, 2010

Working Through The Tough Days

We all have had something that happened in our past that we have to work through on those dreadful anniversary dates. I have 2 moments every year that I must get through, it usually takes me a few days. I use quilting to help me.

The most recent time happened this week and I decided I was going to work my way through this with a donation quilt. I have a bin full of blocks and bits of blocks and another bin of love blocks that were made by my friends. It's taken me quite a while to be able to use some of these. I am now at a place in my head where these blocks need to be used and given to others that need them.

Having no clue as to what I wanted to do, I started with some bits, made some blocks, put them on the wall . All of the sudden I needed one more block. I got out the bin of blocks from my friends. As I cried my way through them, I picked out the crazy patch heart to add to this quilt. I don't know who made it, I just know it was made with love. Thank you whoever you are. I hope this quilt will bring comfort to whoever receives it. It goes on the frame next.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Sleep? Who Needs It?

I wish Ernie's work schedule would go back to normal hours. Normal as in get up around 5 and go to bed around 9 or 10. We haven't had that most of the summer and I am so ready for normal again. Getting up at 3:15 in the morning just isn't right. I've tried to adjust myself to his hours but I can't do it on a daily basis. Maybe if I'd go to bed at night instead of watching mindless tv......but I've been crocheting and don't want to stop. This photo shows what I would find if I decided to go back to bed. Tony thinks if there is no one's head on the pillows, then they must be for him. At least someone can go back to sleep.

I remind myself of the Disneyland commercial......I'm too excited to sleep. Today is Binding Friends day and I have a project I need help with. I'm going to get the perfect layout for my bright stars. They don't know they are going to help but I've never asked for their help and not received it. My friends are the best! I put the camera in my bag so I wouldn't forget to take pictures of the layout~~~just in case.

I'm going in to sew for a little while this morning. I'll be very quiet so I don't wake up the dogs.

Monday, September 06, 2010

Farm Fun on Labor Day

We heat our old house with a wood stove. That means we have to have a very good supply of firewood. With Ernie's job, he is sometimes able to bring home wood chunks. Usually the chunks are brought home, dumped into a pile for a wood cutting day. Then there are the blow down trees and the trees that might blow down that we have right here on the property that need to be taken care of.

Nothing like celebrating Labor Day with some hard labor. Today was a good day to do wood. I filled the crockpot with the makings of taco soup and head outside to help. As Ernie is using the hydraulic wood splitter (no, that is not cheating!), I see him watching something inside the garage. I looked over and Big Momma had flew up onto the woodpile. She's hopping all over the place and all of the sudden a piece of wood falls. She jumped but looked irritated. He wondered how the wood was getting knocked off the pile but thought it was the stray tomcat. No, it was the Big Momma.

When he brought the tractor inside to unload the wood, she started squawking and giving us the what for!!! Silly girl, go lay me an egg! Better yet, get down here and help!

One of my daily reads in Mama Pea's blog, A Home Grown Journal and one day she wrote this post. Talk about woodshed envy!

Design Wall Monday

Yesterday I was in the mood to cut fabric. Although I want a GO! Cutter as bad as I want to win the lottery, I've resigned myself to the fact that I am not going to buy one. I'd rather spend that money on fabric. Now if Accuquilt wants to give me one, I would be jumping up and down with tears streaming from my eyes and be ever so grateful and advertise like a crazy woman for them. I am still entering all the contests to try to win one. Hopefully my luck will change one day soon. Wouldn't that be fabulous.

OK, now back to the design wall. I had 2 bins of flannel. Some was gifted to me, lots I've bought. I keep looking at it wondering what to do with it all. I decided it was time to cut it up and use it. So that is what I did. I spent hours cutting 10 1/2" squares, 5 1/2" x 10" rectangles. I have a kit cut for a Split Decision Quilt that includes the borders and the binding. There are at least 2 more groups of flannel for 2 more kid quilts. The backing pile squares and rectangles will get taller today as I empty out the bins. I need to decide which patterns to use for the other quilts and get them together in kits. I've decided I like being able to pull something out that is ready to sew when I get in the mood for something quick and easy.

I started putting these pieces up on the wall during the Nascar race..........it made me laugh to be working with 2 different Nascar fabrics while the race was on. (The wrinkled pink fabrics were pressed and trimmed but I didn't take a new picture.) I have 2 more rows to sew and this back will be done and put with the batting, this top and binding for the to be quilted mountain.

From the looks of all the links on Judy L's post today, you might want to fix yourself a lunch before you start blog hopping.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Stash Report 9.5.10

You all know the saying about the best laid plans..........well mine did go astray. I planned to finish this top and make the back so my stash report would look great. But corn came between me and my plan. I did get the top finished and I looked at the flannel bin but I didn't touch it. Maybe today...

This week's report:
Used this Week: 5 yards
Used Year to Date: 181.5 yards
Added this Week: 0 yards
Added Year to Date: 143.5 yards
Net Used for 2010: 38

Go to Judy L's and check what she and others are doing to their stash.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

More Kitchen Gadget Fun

Last month I wrote about my Kitchen Gadget Fun. I wrote about my dehydrator and food saver. Today I am loving on my Kuhn Rikon Wide Corn Zipper that I bought from Pleasant Hill Grain when I ordered the meat tenderizer. This little thing is the best $12 I have spent in a very long time. With Ernie helping me by using the zipper, we had the corn in the freezer in no time. He's a pretty good helper.

I did some math and figured I want to have corn for dinner 2 times per week, sometimes less, sometimes more with soups and stews. I'd like to have at least 100 dinner portions in the freezer. I'm packaging mine up in gallon Ziploc freezer bags with 5 dinners per bag. That means I want 20 bags in the freezer.

I put the open bag inside a 6 cup Rubbermaid canister (sad to see they have discontinues this line although I do like the look of the new line) and fill it with 6 cups of corn, press out the air, work it around so it will lay flat and stack it in a cardboard box for the freezer. Then when it's time, I'll bring a bag in to the kitchen freezer, break out what I need, reseal it and put it back in the freezer. Easy Peazy!!!

I have 10 bags now and I'm on my way in to town to get 8 or 10 dozen more ears. I will be done with corn tonight. I love having a freezer full of goodness. I don't care what the cost comparison is, I know mine will taste better than any corn that comes out of a can or a store's freezer.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Next Focus Project

This is my next focus project. I had been using this for my leader/ender that was started in June. It's now time to put it together. As you can see, I need to make 2 more sets and the fabric is laying by the machine. I like going to my bin and getting out the precut pieces that I need.

I love using the design wall and camera together. I can see a few blocks that need to be moved away from each other. I have a great floral print that will be the outer border and now that the bright star blocks are all done, I am going to use some of the yellow from that for an inner border. EQ7 says that with 6" outer borders, this will measure 48.5" x 59". Perfect for a donation quilt.

Again, diving into the bins, I will piece some flannel for the backing for this. I've been thinking of taking all the flannel out of the bin and cutting it into usable squares instead of putting it back in the bin in hunks. I'm starting to think a bit smarter on some of these things. ;0)

I've been spending a little bit of pre-sewing time cutting from my scrap basket. I don't know how it gets overflowing so darn fast! Maybe because I've been letting it. I keep thinking I'm going to win a GO! Cutter from someone and gosh, I would need to have stuff to cut up...........but that isn't working so I guess I'll just go back to the old way. Darn my rotten luck!

Now I need to set myself up with the next leader/ender project. All I know is that it is going to involve 1 1/2" squares........I need to get out my Bonnie Hunter book and see what jumps out at me.