Curved Log Cabin

I've wanted to do this pattern since I began quilting back in October.In fact, it's one of the two patterns that made me start quilting in the first place. When a class was announced two months ago at my LQS, I was first in line. Unfortunately, it's turned into a study in frustration. 

I didn't read the pattern instructions until Thursday, when I discovered it takes almost 2 full days to cut all the fabric into hundreds of little, bitty pieces; and then I left my pattern at the quilt shop Friday when I went to buy the cranberry contrast fabric I hadn't realized I needed. (See "didn't read instructions" above.)
I found a copy of the cutting instructions here, but wasn't positive they were the same as the pattern we were using, so . . . . I went to class (early, to find my pattern) with my fabric cut into long strips but not the hundreds of little blocks I needed. Not a fun way to start the day, or get off on the right foot with a new-to-me teacher.

I managed to finish 5 blocks, 4 of which I turned into a table-topper. I love the illusion of curves made from sewing rectangles together - and the Kaffe Fasset fabric I bought at Roxanne's during my Road Trip With Friends on Wednesday makes even my beginner efforts look pretty. My seams are wonky in places, so I'll start over from scratch in a couple of weeks and do this right. 
To console myself - and to keep from jumping up like a jack-in-the-box to use the ironing board after sewing every single seam -  I bought a sweet little ironing pad/cutting board 
and a fancy, schmancy purple Rowenta iron.
I feel much better now.  


Wedding Blues

Marie's big day is approaching and the little girls are getting all spiffed up. Addy has a new dress - and Leanne has a dress, hair band and white dressy shoes. Going to be quite a party! (please excuse the crummy cell phone pix. Couldn't resist posting these.)


Table Topper

The quilt bug still has me firmly in its grip. I finished this little quilt - for the table beside 'my' seat on the couch - before the doll marathon, but forgot to take pictures until now.The pattern is from the same book as my Bright Star quilt. I'd finished the first three projects in the book and needed to wait for the next class (about three weeks away at that point) before starting the next set of blocks, but . . .  I still had the make-it-now bug, so I came up with this little project, using scraps from my stash.And it's full of memories - the brown on the front is from Rachel's birthday present; the brown on the back is from the first quilt I made;
the blue/gold stripes was used in a gift for a friend; the solid blue came from Breanne and Garrett's Christmas present; and the yellow and red fabrics were a gift from a buddy when I got my new sewing machine. And see that little white thing in the right corner above? 
Oh yeah, I have labels.


Yard Art

Want to see what's kept me from blogging for over a week?  And from doing much of anything else during that same time period?

Doll clothes.
Specifically, a crocheted set of 2 sweaters - pullover and cardigan - 2 hats -beret and bonnet - blanket, backpack, messenger bag, and the scarf from h*ll. These were a commission for a local company and had to be completed within 2 weeks. Which sounds like plenty of time - except I had to design and write the patterns as I went. It was a challenge, and I loved it; all except the last scarf which had to be redone once and took well over 25 hours for a 1.5" x 20" piece of nothing.  Changing yarn every 2 rows will sure eat up the time.

So, want to see what we did to celebrate the job's completion? Had lunch at a nice restaurant in downtown Ventura and went yard art shopping in Ventura* and Carpinteria**.The original plan was to go antiquing, but lawn baubles are what followed us home. This is Clarence, one of the cutest wind chimes ever 
And how could I say "no" to this little guy?? 
I'm hoping Addy will give him a name when she sees him/her. Clarence and Mr. No-Name Pig join Mr. Peacock Rooster Head (Addy named him. See why I can't wait to see what she comes up with for the pig?)
and our hard-working little ant with his very own wheelbarrow. 
We also picked up yet another variety of purple flowers for the yard. 
Not sure what this is called, but I saw them in a hanging basket and fell in love. They love sun - a good thing in our front yard - and lots of water - a bad thing in our yard, since we don't have automatic sprinklers and rely on hubby for keeping plants alive. It'll be interesting to see how this one does. 

*Oasis Garden and Patio, one of the nicest, must-buy-one-of-everything stores I've seen in a long time. Pig, Clarence and the flowers all came from here.
** No yard art in Carpinteria - but I did find a cool yarn-quilting-felt store. Roxanne's A Wish and A Dream replaced the old Treasure Hunt at 919 Maple, Carpinteria.


New Tools

I bought myself a new quilting toy tool.
Several ladies in my last class had these little acrylic tables attached to their sewing machines and so . . . I had to have one too.
So fantastic! It provides a larger working surface and more support for the fabric, a really big plus when you're quilting anything larger than a placemat.The table slides into place against the base of my sewing machine and the legs are adjustable so the height is just right. It was a bit pricey, but worth every penny since I'm sure I'll get lots of use out of it.That's my excuse story and I'm sticking to it.   



Leanne has discovered her power to make us laugh - 
and regain our attention when it wanders away for even a second. Just imagine the hiiiiiigh pitched screech that accompanied that open-mouth shot in the upper right. Girl's got some first class lungs.


Eggceptional Day

The baby grands spent the night with their mom
but came over this morning to see what the Easter Bunny left for them. 
They were in no doubt that something would be waiting for them at Grandma and PopPop's house.  And they were right, of course. 
Mr. Bunny arrived during the night, sporting nontraditional baskets - Big Bird, basketball and Sock Monkey - and nontraditional contents, including a Tinkerbell dress that make Leia eggstatic.  (A little Easter humor . . . .)
On his way out, Bunny hid a slew of eggs around the front yard. Some were pretty obvious -
but others took a bit of searching.
Miles and Leia were up for the challenge, but Naia quit looking fairly quickly, deciding she was more interested in what was eggtually in the eggs. 
 Lunch was picnic-style on the grass, 
  and we didn't even pretend that the kids wanted anything other than Mickey D's. 
How can you say 'no' to such happy faces? 
Leanne arrived after most of the eggtivity was over but she didn't seem to mind - 
she played with Cousin Leia until the eggcitement wore her out. 
Hope your day was as eggceptional as ours! Hoppy Easter!



Leia was gifted a bottle of bubbles and all she thought about all day was getting outside and playing with them. It took her a bit of trying to get the hang of huffing
and puffing
at just the right time,
but it finally all came together - 

and she was thrilled.
And almost better than blowing bubbles was "having" to clean up the mess made where the bubbles spilled.
I showed her how to use her fingers to make 'rooster tails' - something I bet I'll regret one of these days.
But she was so cute, and so pleased with herself, I couldn't resist.
Happy Spring, y'all!


It's The Little Things

This little bitty pipe,
with it's little bitty hole,
made one h*ll of a big mess when it began spewing hot water out from under the cabinet in our guest bathroom Tuesday night. It took every towel and bed sheet we owned to stem the flood until hubby was able to get the water to the house turned off. 
The third, and hopefully last, load to wash. 

He patched it temporarily, we crossed our fingers, and turned the water back on 30 minutes later to . . . . no more flooding. A trip to the hardware store today, a short stint under the bathroom sink, and all is good again. 

I {heart} my handy hubby!


Naming Rights

While her mom was in California, Addison went camping with her dad (here's last time) and got to feed - and name - a newborn calf. Apparently, when cows give birth to twins, one is often neglected by mom and must be bottle fed. Who knew?
Addy named him (her?) Waggy, because he was always wagging his tail.  I thought that was pretty clever (and yes, I may be a tad bit biased.)

I'm guessing Addy chose her own clothing for this trip. I'm betting Dad didn't pick the (grandma-made) dress, lace socks or pretty purple shoes. (Click the picture to see it bigger.)
But in Addy's defense, you should dress nicely when you're meeting new friends. Right?