Sunday, January 03, 2010

What I've been up to! progress pictures were shown before Christmas...because dd#3 reads the blog. This quilt is much further along than the picture above shows, and 300% brighter. I used a string block variation, where I began with a foundation piece (in this case the polka-dotted fabric in each diagonal center) and worked outwards toward opposite corners. This makes it so the seams are all encased between the strip on top, and the foundation piece on the bottom. I placed a purply red mottled fabric as a 2" border and a final row of blocks all around the edge. All the fabrics are batiks, and variations thereof, mottled, fossil ferns, overdyed prints, etc. The batting is a bamboo/cotton blend.

It's all layered and pinned, and I am in the process of machine quilting. I had preplanned the quilting, but the best-laid plans don't always work out. This is a large piece for me, my largest in fact! It's about 68x84 and I don't have the space to do lay it all out and get fancy. I am ending up stitching in the ditch around the blocks and on each side of the diagonal, using a multi-color orange thread. The binding will be random pieced of the quilt's fabrics...or the same as the border, really not sure yet.

Gosh, sure hope she likes it! It's got a long journey ahead to Iraq, I've got my fingers crossed for it's safe arrival and many years of snugglies.

Merry Christmas Peach!

Saturday's Progress
Meal planning - nope
Grocery shopping - a little, whatever we could carry home
64 oz water - 32 oz
A bike ride - nope; walked 1.7 miles instead
1 hour of Quilting - yup
1 hour of Studio Cleaning - nope

Sunday's Goals
Take down Christmas lights
Grocery shopping
1 hour of Quilting
1 hour of Studio Cleaning
Walk around the block

Saturday, January 02, 2010

A New Beginning Again

Not going to beat myself up over this. Yes, you are! No, I'm not! Yes! You are! No! I'm not! Oh Lord, I'm hearing voices.

A new year, a new chance, another try. As long as I keep trying, I think I'm A-OK. I refuse to give up. Yeah, I'm that stubborn.

A little more focus this time. Water and a little more exercise are my target. I drink literally NO water as a general course, so as easy as it sounds, it's NOT. I have a new bike, and two come on now, how hard can this be? The weather is cool, and I really don't have many excuses left!

On tap for Saturday:
Meal planning
Grocery shopping
64 oz water
A bike ride
1 hour of Quilting
1 hour of Studio Cleaning

Sunday, September 06, 2009

Sunday Sundae

When Maj Art LaFlamme orders, we listen!

Art, also known as IBOL Guy, says he'd be pleased if those of us "with" could help the "without". We came thru in spades. As close as I can calculate with good numbers, he has received 367 bundles + 150 bundles sold from Sew Mama Sew + 5 from my friends the Serial Quilters + 1 from my Canadian bestie + 1 additional bundle from me. Well over 500 bundles to be distributed to the Iraqi. I'm suitably impressed.

One per CAN make a change.

Then, the man in charge, aka IBOL guy says we need to celebrate with ice cream sundaes. Oh boy! Yeah, I can do that. Dh, dd#2 and I all had a sundae this afternoon. Yum-o.

My dd#1, also in Iraq followed orders from her superiors.
Her battle buddy followed orders too.

Great way to celebrate a fantastic humatarian effort, wouldn't you say?

Lovely photo courtesy of ErikaJean, IBOL supporter extraordinaire!

Thursday, August 27, 2009


Quilters think in terms of "projects", and how they can help a people less fortunate. Project Linus, Quilts for Katrina, the Australian Bushfire quilt project, etc.

When you are the son of a quilter, husband of a quilter, father of a quilter, some of the craft begins to wear off on you. When you are a soldier, and are working to help a people who are without the basic necessities for daily living, and have all these quilting influences, the next thought is, "How can I help?"

Major Art LaFlamme began a project called Iraqi Bundles of Love (IBOL). Now stationed in Iraq, he has arranged for quilters worldwide to send him bundles of quilting supplies that are being distributed to the Iraqi homemakers!

From Art's blog
"Iraqi Bundles of Love is a short-duration project, set to last about six weeks (around Sept. 7, 2009), to surge fabric and sewing materials into the area around which I live in Iraq. It is timed to coincide with both Ramadan, and the departure of my units from Iraq.
It is intended to be a simple project, requiring little effort and little expenditures from those wishing to participate. It is based upon my assessment that sewing fanatics and quilters tend to have stashes that far exceed their actual needs, and that sewing fanatics and quilters are passionate both about sewing / quilting, and about sharing with others.
The general premise is this. I am in Iraq, and I can get mail through the US Postal System. Willing contributors can send to me a flat-rate box of sewing / quilting supplies, all bundled up. I'd open the box, pull out the fully-contained bundle, and hand of off (with others) to our counterparts in the Iraqi Security Forces (Army and others) or the local police, for them to distribute. The stated intent of this operation is to put sewing and quilting supplies into the hands of two types of recipients: locals who desperately need such things, and local sewing co-ops who have received grants or loans (typically to purchase sewing machines, rent space, etc).

As mentioned above, the deadline to help this effort is September 7, so that bundles arrive in time to be distributed by the end of Ramadan. They are arriving already, the US Postal Service delivers Flat Rate box after box. (They are up to 105 currently!)

It is one man (the Major) and his Tucson native battle buddy (the Captain), who tells one woman (his wife), who tells her blog readers (me), those readers take the information and run with it. It's gone viral (well, on a quilting scale anyways!). Isn't the internet an AWESOME thing?

Check-out some of these other blog entries about IBOL:

Kristin, his Wife
Sew Mama Sew
Pink Chalk Studio
A friend's blog
The Happy Zombie

I'm getting my bundle ready this weekend, what are you waiting for?

Monday, August 17, 2009

Camera Operation 101

This could be a repeat post, lol...but I'm old "now", I'm allowed. I just ran across this photo on KMVT's website and wanted to post it.

My husband would tell you that the experience we received regarding camera operation isn't anything like the "real thing". What I would tell you is that I wouldn't trade what I learned, and the fun that I had, for anything!

We received free training while I was an Administrative Assistant at a small Community Television station in northern California...and HE went on to a CBS Affiliate station here in Arizona. Not sure how that happened, and YES, I'm green with envy. We do view television a bit differently now days, "Hey, look at that green screen shot!" and, "Look, she missed her cue!"

Personally, I still like to look at the bump shots of my husband as they cue out the news, and his inclusion in the promos. *grin*

Sunday, August 09, 2009

"Tap, tap, tap...Is this thing still ON?"

Yeah, so I have NO idea what happened to the last 6 months.

Some of the things I can remember tho:

First - A MAJOR guest bath reno. We decorated around the shower curtain (which you see reflected in the medicine cabinet mirror) yeah, I'm impractical like that! It is terra cota, and I'm loving it. I promise you, it's not as pumpkin as it appears. We replaced the towel racks, toilet tissue holder and light fixture in brushed nickle. Since replacing the sink and vanity really weren't in the budget, we painted the contractor's grade cupboard using a carmel color. A little remnant left from hemming the shower curtain went on a spare towel.

The second thing I've remembered: Hexagons!
I use mass transit to get to work. My employer thankfully subsidizes our bus passes by 50%, making it quite affordable. Parking in a City lot is $8/day which seems like a good chunk of money. I can't imagine some cities that charge $20 or more/day...ouch!

Riding the bus gives me 20 minutes in the bus each way, and I generally have 30 minutes to spare after eating lunch. I've been toting English Paper Piecing with me, a fantastic handwork project. Below is a pic of my work so far, it's destined for a wallhanging for my cubicle at work. I think it would look best with one more row of 3 diamonds., it's a design-in-progress.

I need suggestions for the borders, I can't decide if I should applique the hexagons onto a border or have the outer row of white be used as part of the seam allowance. What do you think? AND..what color borders? All the fabrics used have a small print, including the white. They are Aunt Grace-like. (I think I made the pics clickable-IF I remembered how, lol.)

Thirdly, my daughter #3 is now in Iraq, a reservist in the Army. Her first request was for "girly sheets". Here is a tease...cuz my soldier reads my blog! Sorry Peach, ya gotta wait for the box, you should get it in a week, it's going out in Monday's mail. Her sisters are having fun gathering items to send, dd#2 has already managed to get a box to her. Dd#1 has a box ready to ship too!

Her box is jam-packed, it'll probably SPRING open! I couldn't even send everything I intended. Guess she'll just have to wait for the next shipment. YES Peach, I won't forget the banana bread, lol.

I invite you to read her blog: and her battle buddy Erin's: . It will give you a good idea of a soldier's view of things.

That's all I can think of from the Sonoran Desert. The monsoons were a bust, they're pretty much over. They're promising an extra wet winter, I'll be waiting!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Nacho Casserole

Easy peasy, and pretty darned good!

1 can cheddar cheese soup
1/2 c. milk (any type)
12oz picante sauce (I used mild)
1lb. ground beef, cooked, drained, & finely crumbled
7oz corn chips
10oz can refried beans
1c. shredded cheddar
1 sm. can chopped green chilies
sliced black olives if desired

In a glass 13x9 mix soup with milk.
Spoon half of picante sauce on top and spread as evenly as possible with spoon back.
Layer 1/2 of corn chips over picante.
Layer cooked ground beef.
Layer refried beans.
Layer rest of corn chips.
Add rest of picante over top.
Top with shredded cheddar, green chilies and black olives if desired.

Bake at 400F for 20 minutes.