Saturday, March 30, 2013

Afternoon Break

Wow what a busy Saturday.  Still it is Saturday Sharing Day over at Thearica's Blog Pigtales and Quilts  Come on over and show off what you have been up to this week. 

DH washed all the windows on the sun room/mud room depending on the season, swept and mopped. 

 I cleaned the kitchen, made beans which will be made into baked beans, and a cake.  Hung new curtains in the kitchen....well they are not new they are recycled from my previous home. 

Yes red gingham! Sorry for the dark picture. 
I dusted, washed windows in the house, and opened some up to get some fresh air.  We have sun, a light breeze and it is like 50 degrees which is a heat wave.  :D

We moved the Hoosier into the kitchen too- close to its new home after I painted the green monster this week. 
I have been vacuuming the vents including the black hole!

Trust me it is better than it was.  The hammer fixed the ancient hardwood along the molding that keeps falling into the vent.  No I did not use nails, I actually put it back into the tongue and groove and hammered it back into the space where it goes. 

DH hung up an old coat hook in my playroom!  What a great way to keep my blocks from what I am working on all neat and tidy.

Oh and during the week I did get some sewing time. 

I sandwiched my Easy Street so it is ready for quilting.  Will probably be unsandwiched, I came up with an idea of how I want to quilt it and it needs marking now.  Unless I figure out how to mark it with the pin basting.

My foray into the man cave where DH set up 3 banquet tables for me to use to sandwich. 

Easy street waiting to be quilted

And laying out my Hugs and Kisses quilt blocks in the order I wanted.

My weekly goals are to finish 2 farmer's wife blocks.  Of course this week were these two


Peace and plenty

Lots of triangles.

I would love to finish a country charmer or two this weekend before the insanity of the family Easter dinner here.  But I also have some more cooking and house cleaning.  Happy Easter everyone again. 

Sunny Saturday Morning

Oh yesterday was absolutely beautiful!  Finally a day with no rain, cold, wind, or snow. 

What did we do?  Since it was Good Friday, everyone was home.  We took out an old mattress and set of springs from the spare room to get it ready for my families impending visit.  I really wish that I had taken pictures, but we managed to get them out of the house with minimal damage, and put the new mattress and box spring into the bed frame. 

What was so fun about replacing the old mattress and set of springs?  We left them on the lawn, and the minions bounced, jumped, giggled, and enjoyed the sun for hours.  The other play zone was a small mound of sand at the end of our new walkway.  I am sure there are probably toys buried in it. 

Even with all of that I did get a wee bit of sewing done.  I finished two Farmer's wife blocks!


Peace and plenty.

I also got one row of my hugs and kisses quilt done.  So even though I sat outside enjoying the sun, and watching the little boys play for hours, I also got some me time to get these done.

I have Easter Dinner and housecleaning to get done.  Have a wonderful Saturday.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Invading the Man Cave

I have been totally engrossed in Christa Quilts Hugs and Kisses QAL  the last few days.  I made tons of bow tie blocks.

So that I could use the Man Cave to layout my quilt.  DH has been gracious enough to set up 3 banquet tables for me in the loft so that I could sandwich my quilts, which is a ton better than trying to do it in the dining room with the minions wandering around, or getting read for a holiday family dinner. 

I laid out my bow ties over and over.  This is what I came up with after over an hour.  I then picked it up and started pin basting my Easy Street.

As you can see even with 3 banquet tables, a king sized batting, and an extra large backing it was a stretch.  But it is all pin basted after a couple of hours.  This is going to be quite the quilt to machine quilt, but I am excited because I have a wonderful idea for a quilting pattern. 

Tomorrow is Good Friday, the boys are out of school, and it is the beginning of their spring break.  DH is off because he works for a municipality.  I am hoping I can get some sewing in because I have a house to clean, and a ton of food to make for Sunday, as well as Easter Eggs to pack, and Easter Baskets to prepare. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Victim of Sibling Rivalry

I will admit I have not had spectacular days the past few.  But Tuesday is a new day and it is still morning so a day full of possibilities.

See this green monstrosity?  It at one time was the door that came into the side of the house off of the driveway.  It came directly into my kitchen and family room.  During the winter every time this door opened freezing air, leaves, dirt, snow would blow into this area and it would take forever to get warm again.
My brilliant idea?  Take this room which was called the sun room.  Remove the window to the left.  Finish the room and use it as a mudroom/entry to the house.  It was more direct from where the cars parked.  There was a slider that closed off the family room into this room so we went to work.

Window removed, new paint, flooring, spray foam insulation, moldings around the windows, doors, and it became our new mudroom, and entry way.

I put another coat on the green monster today.

While "The Finn" slept.

I also managed to get all my bow tie parts done for the hugs and kisses

And even sewed a few bow ties.

Prewashed my backing for my easy street, dried and ironed it and when it warms up a bit will go out to the loft in the barn and sandwich my quilt.

But for now.  I think more bow ties are in order.

Happy Tuesday. 

PS Why am I the victim of sibling rivalry.  Easter is at our house, and DH and his oldest sister have this thing about who's house is nicer.  She lives in an old Queen Anne Style home and has put a lot of work into the restoration with the help of DH.  Unfortunately the help was not reciprocated so DH''s home has not received all the updates which are necessary.  The wall that had to get finished yeah it has been a big drywall hole for months.  DH wanted it done so he could move the Hoosier we purchased and the refrigerator as well as the water line to the fridge before Sunday.  My part is done it is now all up to him. Oh yeah he has a new light and ceiling fan for the mudroom.  Go baby Go!  :D

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Abbracci e baci por Sophia

Translated means Hugs and Kisses for Sophia.  I decided that to get Sophia up an running and give her a wee work out I would work on my Hugs and Kisses QAL from Christa's Quilts
I am a wee bit behind only on step 5.3 sewing the bow tie blocks. 

She is a wee bit stiff, the feed dogs seemed to be pulling kind of hard but finally with some oil and some running started to loosen up a bit. 

Sophia got a new V-belt not my favorite type it is hard to use the hand wheel to get her sewing at times.  If you can see where the cord goes in, that connects to the old bakelite pedal.

Again not one of my favorites.  All of my other machines I have replace the pedals which is easy since they all kind of plug into most antique machines. 

Sophia's other quirk? 

See that little pin on the bobbin winder.  The bobbin has a small hole that fits exactly onto that pin in order to work.  The machine came with a bobbin which is a drop in which is very cool.  But I like to have a couple of back up bobbins wound when I am sewing.  Which should be no problem; The bobbins for the 99K are called class 66 bobbins and are shared between several machines including Jane my 500A.  I thought great I have 10 of those that I ordered to use with Jane. 

The bobbin on the right is the one that came with Sophia, the one on the left is one that fits Jane and should fit Sophia.  But if you see the hole at the top, it is not as close to the center hole so it doesn't work.  DH is going to try to use a Dremel and enlarge the hole on the other 10 I have hopefully it works.

In the meantime we had a very successful day.  DH put in the Minion Mama's transmission for her mom mobile.  DH sanded the wall where the door used to enter into our home. We washed the wall, primed, and painted.  Cleaned the loft in the barn so that we could set up 3 banquet tables where I can sandwich my quilts this week instead of having the tables into the dining room, washed, dried, and folded all the laundry.  Not a bad start to the major cleaning which needs to be completed for the family Easter dinner. 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Oh the Things You Can Do

Photobucket It's Saturday Sharing Day.  To learn more please scroll down. 

I read a ton of blogs, and see a lot of people turning out many, many quilts.  I was actually starting to feel extremely slow, but then come to find out some people have an accuquilt cutter either a go or a studio so they can cut strips, squares, HST like no body's business.  So when I  can churn this out from this

To this

And finally Ta Da!

Yes I have all my 2 1/2 inch squares, 1 1/2 inch squares, 2 1/2 X 4 1/2 bricks and all 280 of the white background fabric in one afternoon that is great.  I am doing the happy dance in my chair.

I also learned to thread Sophia my new 99K, and did a test seam.

She sews a pretty seam and I have my 1/4 inch mark set with my old credit card and painters tape.  I think I may just use her to make this quilt.  Now to read the manual on how to wind a button.  Love old machines, but each and everyone is a bit quirky when it comes to threading, and winding the bobbins. 

I did not get a country charmer block finished this week and I am down 2 jewel box blocks so far this month.  But I am absolutely dying to cut into this fabric for the Quilter's Club of America mystery quilt.  It only needed a light and a dark, and I thought it would be so much fun to use these St. Patrick's Day fabrics I found at Joann's for 50% off.  Maybe sew a bit tonight, and work on the mystery quilt tomorrow.

Oh by the way it is Saturday Sharing Day over at Pigtales and Quilts.  Check out Thearica's new banner it is super cute!  Read the story behind the banner it is a fun read.  OK I love that the days are getting longer.  DH is doing wood, and I have more time to sew this evening.  Happy Saturday Evening all. 

Sunny Saturday

After my rant yesterday about time to myself to do what I want to do.  Someone was watching out for me because things just kind of worked out for the best today.

Let me start by saying that I have the world's best husband ever, and mother-in-law.  My husband met me, and I told him I had baggage-- A twenty something year old daughter and two grandson's through circumstances out of our control had to live with me.  Instead of running to the hills he decided that it was too far to drive and see me every evening, and he wanted to see me every day so he moved us into his family's ancient farm house.  The boys had room to run, mud, rocks, and the best man in the world to hang out with.  DH has them help him fix cars, tractors, lets them tear down porches and posts with the tractors and just be boys.  I treasure every day with my DH and the little boys (even the Finn :D ) and I feel terrible that maybe yesterday I was not cherishing them just as much as I should. 

Part of the frustration this week was trying to combine bank accounts, set up automatic bill pays and get everything financially in order.  We had been putting it off but 2 bank accounts at different banks was just not making sense.  We finally agreed upon a bank which was a no brainer, but to set up the auto pays for the utilities was aggravating at best with hours spent on the phone. 

While I was working on this monumental task the middle one is hanging out with me in my playroom and he says "Rheema you have tiny scissors."
I told him "Yes and you cannot touch them they are for sewing." 
I usually keep a pair by each of my sewing machines, and on the ironing board to cut threads. 
He then tells me, "On my birthday I am going to get Tiny Scissors too!  And knives!"
It took everything I had to not laugh hysterically.  Got to love them.

Everything finally kind of fell into place last night.  Ikea did not have a microwave cart, but I found one online which is much smaller and ordered it for the MIL as a birthday gift.  While her kitchen is in much need of a remodel, DH and I after racking our brains for hours cannot figure out how to reconfigure short of getting a much smaller refrigerator.  We did agree though that maybe we should consider getting her new cabinets and counter tops.  Therefore Saturday was free.  LOL  Sunday though is breakfast at the VFW. 

We ran to the bank, then to the nearest sewing and vacuum repair store to get a belt for my new baby.

DH put the new belt on and oiled her.  I need to look up how to wind the bobbin, and thread her and try her out.  She is a Singer 99K. 

I have also had time to work on my QAL.  I have went from this:

To this:

And have the rest of my pieces all pressed as well as part of the solid to go along with it.  Just maybe I will start sewing on it this weekend. 

Have a wonderful Saturday, and while things do not always work out the way you want, sometimes there is a much grander and better plan in store.

Friday, March 22, 2013

All the Background Noise

Do you ever get distracted from doing what you want to do?  For years I was distracted, my job took up so much time that I did not have any time for anything else, let alone me. The Work Force Reduction was a blessing.  I had time to re-evaluate what I wanted out of life, and gave me a chance to recoup after living an out of control lifestyle for many years. A great question that I see all the time is do you live to work or work to live? 

The downside while I am looking for a new career, and I am thoroughly enjoying my time quilting, blogging and relaxing, but there are times when everything else demands attention NOW and I lose the time for me.  This week was one of them.

The last two days I have manged to sew for only a couple of hours.  Yes I am obviously extremely slow.  I did manage to get my 2 Farmer's wife blocks done this week.  An attic window (top) and End of Day.  I am getting much more accurate and was extremely pleased with how they turned out.  Not thrilled with the color combination on the Attic Window, but I have killer points in my End of Day block!

I have cut some of my blocks for Christa's Hugs and Kisses QAL.  OK maybe it is only about 10 strips so far of a total of 35 prints and 18 solids but it is a start. 

Unfortunately MIL is requesting a shopping trip to Ikea and The Christmas Tree Shop (I think she is angling for DH to remodel her kitchen).  This evening I am supposed to meet DH at MIL to measure the kitchen for our shopping trip tomorrow.  Oh well maybe next week will be better and I won't have quite as many demands since I got so many other things done the past couple of days. 

Happy Friday Everyone and hopefully you have a chance to do something that give you joy this busy weekend. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Finally a Day to Myself

I have not had much time to myself this week.  I took "The Finn" one night. 

Yeah his idea of that night was from 8 pm until 7 am.  Eat, change my diaper, talk to me, fuss, eat, cat nap in 15 minute increments, and repeat.  So not much rest for me.

I did manage to get my barn done for the Quilty Barn Along from Bee In My Bonnet

I made my daughter a little coin purse her birthday.

I had some sun and I took advantage of the fact to take the picture. 

This morning I got my strips cut for my batik strip swap, went to the post office and mailed my daughter's and sister's birthday presents off, as well as my strips for the swap.  I have the whole rest of the day to myself.   

I am way behind on my weekly goals.

FW 2 blocks per week
Jewel box quilt 1 block per week
Country Charmer 1 block per week

Quilty Barn Along --Check
Hugs and Kisses at Christ Quilts--yeah way behind
Quiltmaker Magazine Sunday Mystery Quilt way behind lucky me this one is bi monthly
Mystery Quilt-  Quilt club of America  have the fabric, just have not started to cut yet.

Oh yeah, and I had to order my Warm and White Batting it arrived so I can finally work on sandwiching my Easy Street.  Also Ginger Rose has all the borders so I can get the backing prepared and start getting that sandwiched and work on the machine quilting. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Border War

My earlier post I was lamenting the fact that I had cut my border incorrectly.

This is what I had left when it was all said and done and I squared up my ends.  Roughly 2 inches.

But the borders are on, and I am hoping that DH will set up the banquet tables for me this weekend and I can sandwich this one and start the machine quilting. 

That would mean that I actually achieved one of my March Goals!

There are Days

A couple of days ago my daughter, who has a perfectly good sewing machine herself, asked me to mend her work pants for her.  My first thought?

I was fortunate that I had one straight stitch machine set up with black thread so I mended the hole, but then decided I wanted to zig zag the edges.  Because the Viking was sitting in the dining room, and I had a bobbin already wound with black I thought what the heck, and zig zagged the seam too.

Yesterday morning, since the Viking was already set up with black thread, I decided to "fix" a piece of lingerie that the manufacturer actually just kind of fused the edges together.   I started with a zig zag going very slow...and instantly broke the needle.  Replaced the needle with a "jeans" needle and started again.  I got a message that my motor was too hot.  I could not get the needle to go up, or down it was just stuck.  I tried shutting it off, and turning it back on.  I tried to loosen the needle, still nope.  So I broke the needle with a pair of needle nose pliers, and tried one more time.  I set it up with a blind hem stitch and it worked.

That should have been indicator #1  3 needles and an hour to fix something which was 2 inches long.

I then decided to cut the borders for the Ginger Rose quilt.  The fabric is a couple of years old and I got lucky recently and found a shop online that carried it still because DH wanted the quilt larger.  I had purchased 2 yards of this fabric a while back, and boy so I wish I had purchased more.  I needed 6 1/2 inches with 2 borders which were 76 and 2 borders which were 92 1/2, so by my calculations if I cut the strips LOF I would need 5 strips.  That would give me a nice little chunk remaining that I could use for my Quilty Barn Along (Do you have a favorite fabric which is a 'go to' fabric?  This is one of mine)  I ironed, layered, and laid the fabric out to cut.  Did the three strips, was getting ready to trim and square up the ends, and discovered.  I cut the first set of strips 5 1/2 inches.  That was 2 strips messed up or 11 inches worth of fabric LOF!  I was so discouraged.  I then grabbed the extra strip which I had which was on the fold and opened it up, ironed it and it was actually about 6 3/4 inches wide!  Hallelujah!  I trimmed the edges and sewed them together, repressed and started to put the final borders on the Ginger Rose!  I got two on before DH came home.

Indicator #2.

Indicator #3

I walked out the door to go to the Post office to mail my sisters birthday gift and what looked like snow earlier was actually ice crystals.  Everything was iced over and slick.  I do not do ice or snow anymore.  So back into the house I went.  

Yesterday was one of those days which I would have been much better served to just read a book, clean up my playroom but no actual sewing.

I did have a good part of the day too though.  DH saw a sewing machine on craigslist.  We sent a message and they still had it.  So we drove 2 hours, no it wasn't over 100 miles away, there was just no direct way to get to this guy's house!  But this is what we discovered.

The case is not perfect

She has some dings, but don't all of us once we get older?

She is a Singer 99K and she is in excellent condition.  Her belt needs to be replaced, you know how old rubber gets. 

No scratches and the decals were in excellent condition.  According to the serial number should would have been built in 1955.  She is considered a 3/4 machine, but whoa she is a heavy girl.  DH wants to name her Chub Chub.  The top actress that year was Grace Kelly but for some reason that just doesn't take my fancy.  Even though she is not Italian or a Necchi I think Sophia would be good.  She is curvy and gorgous.  I can't wait to get a new belt and sew on her.

Also a huge thanks for the shout out to Carrie P. at A Passion for Applique'

Have a wonderful Tuesday, everyone and here is hoping you get some sewing time!