November 19, 2018

   Not quite the last leaf here, but pretty darn close. They are all frost and snow bitten and are still hanging on by their stem capillaries. Check out your Bonus free pattern The Last Leaf.

  Have you ever gone to use a piece of batting only to find out it was just shy of what was needed? I tell you what a pain! I use to hand baste pieces together thinking that stitching them wasn't that great. But, according to this video piecing batting together it is a okay.  Remember to use matching thread.

   It was a wonderful day for a walk today. Calgary has so much wildlife inside the city limits. Can you see the does and buck? They just look at us 2 legged creatures and carry on. No big deal.

For this time of the year it is down right balmy sitting in the sun. How many of you can relate to not having your picture taken? Mom, really do you have to? She's always trying to get a good picture. Even though I give her my good side, she says she needs a really good portrait not a cameo. Ugh!

November 13, 2018

Ice on the Lake

   Oh no, winter is really coming. Ice is beginning to form on the lake, there is frost in the mornings and we shoveled three times last week. Every year I say we're only going to shovel the front sidewalk and a path from the front door to the front sidewalk. So far so good. The new vehicle is bigger and higher off the ground so, will see how it goes.

  We are into week one of the next 80 Splendid Sampler II blocks. You can get your book in softcover or kindle version.

Here is my Sunny Side Up version breakfast for four. (top left clockwise) Curves Forever by Jenny Pedigo & Helen Robinson. We think this cool block would make a great border as well. Estelle by Joyce Beenes. Oh how I love the smaller pieced blocks and so easy to make. You can really change the block look by changing the values. Next is Hashtag Love by Jane Davidson. A wonderfully simple yet effective block. We all love the hashtags. Was hashtag even a word before social media? 😄 It definitely is better than pound love. Lastly, Ticker Tape by Debbie Brown. Check out her blog Higheredhands Debbie Brown Quilts .

  Do you see that white stuff? Who put it there? Brr. Hm! Since I can't go outside without getting a chill and my feet wet, I think I'll just lay in the sun till Spring.

November 6, 2018

The Final Block

  This is it. The 20th and last free block from the Splendid Sampler II. Thanks to Lissa Alexander for her block, Big Sun.

We found it tricky making the quarter square rectangle.

It was tricky making the rectangular quarter triangles. 
Lay out all the triangles.

Sew the triangles together. After pressing the seam so the white fabric was on top, the yellow fabric was showing at the edge (was wider in the seam allowance so that one could see it). We had to trim the seam a smidgen. The picture shows the scissors at an angle. This causes the white fabric to be a bit wider than the yellow fabric. Therefore the yellow fabric does not show.

Pin the center point to align when sewing the two halves together.

Open center, spin and press seams.

Align the triangle marked paper on the quarter rectangle and trim around the outside edge.

   Spent an extra long long weekend at Quilt Market in Houston. Outside the convention there is a beautiful park that is used for many events. Last weekend there were also street vendors. Look at what I found! Pac men carrying the garden gnome away. 

We are always amazed at the amount of fabric collections the are produced each year. And now with digitally printed collections they are enticing that much more. Aye E!
We've all seen Hoffman's big flower. Look what Cindy McCracken has done with her flower. This gives me so many ideas for my own design. So stay tuned.

   So while mom's been either on the computer or sewing, I've discovered birds in the front rose bushes. The continuous crashing of blinds one morning made mom raise them. So now they are raised each morning. (She's still in training you know and coming along just fine.) Now I can see all the birds. Unfortunately for me and fortunately for the birds, when they land on the window sill all I can do is slap the window.  It's so frustrating. I sit there and chirp call them but cannot grab them. What to do, what to do. I guess it's called practice.
Where are you my sweet birdie.

Here birdie, birdie. Come to my window sill.

October 29, 2018

More Quilt Alongs

   Is it good to have enough quilt alongs and block of the months so that you can call it block of the day? Hum. Call me crazy. Yes, I've joined 3 more. Two from Stitchin' Tree

and Freshly Pieced's new 2019 BOM.

   Besides all this I'm working on the remaining 80 Splendid Sampler II's blocks. Since applique is not my forte, these blocks are being done first. This prevents having to continuously change the decorative thread. Ugh.  That being said here is the next free block. It's Radio Waves by Pat Sloan. Very easy.

The corner triangles were cut larger so that the block could be trimmed to the correct size.

   Ah, the life of Riley. What more can anyone ask for? R and R in the sun. 
I see you taking my picture.

October 22, 2018

Over 70

   The other day I just had to read Maclean's, Canada's happiest people are teenage boys and women over 70 article. Women over 70 are healthy, happy and enriched by life experience. The boys are' self-deluded' in their own bliss, and that's another story.

Me, I claim to be an intermediate senior, not quite 65, and definitely enjoy my semi-retired life. What is better than sitting down at a sewing machine and stitching to one's heart content, especially with Kitty or puppy by your side? Nothing, well okay, playing with grand children or pets, and visiting with friends, especially quilting friends, and family. Accordingly, we reap the benefits of having a strong sense of belonging and accomplishment. You bet we do. There is nothing better than sitting with a group of quilters and making the last stitch on a binding.

   This brings me to the next free Splendid Sampler II block, Flower Child by Carolee McMullin, owner of ADORNit.

I have to say I'm getting very proficient at applique and using more decorative stitches.  Two hints: 1) press center seams open, 2) to get the stripe going in the same direction, place the two squares either wrong or right sides together and cut diagonally.

   For those of you who have never been to Calgary or have just come during one season, ie winter or Calgary Stampede, here is a link to Maggie Ssuzzy's pictures. The music is strange for Calgary so I recommend that you watch the video with the music off.

October 15, 2018

   Splendid Sampler Block 17, Pineapple by Jane Davidson.  A little pineapple to go with the bacon. This block was much easier if you machine embroidered the little squares. Then did french or colonial knots. I definitely wasn't going to fuse or needle turn the squares. Unh-unh, nada, no way Jose. And it was even easier if you had the right fabric. Just so happens we did. Fussy cut then add colonial knot in the darker circles. WooHoo!

   If you asked me years ago to make 6" blocks I'd have laughed and said no way. And now, after making the 150 Canadian Women quilt, I love the smaller squares. Check out the latest block for the 2018 Murder Mystery quilt. Five, yes FIVE, inches square. Oh so cute. I'm finding that nothing larger than 9" squares are my favorite.

The only problem was trimming 100, yes ONE HUNDRED, hst's to 1.5" square.
Way too cute.

   We are now back in warm fall weather. Maybe, what they call, indian summer.

Good evening everyone. Last week was dreadful. It snowed and snowed and snowed. I might get my paws wet and cold. However, it was fun bugging mom to let me outside even though I had no plans to go outside. She is such a sucker. But, you know there is always a but, when the weather finally warmed up, mom let me outside unsupervised. I think she went to get her coat and forgot about me. Anyways, the door shut and I scratched and scratched and scratched. When the door opened she was so apologetic. I got a treat. Then ignored her.

October 8, 2018

Women's History Month in Canada Cathedral

   Besides fall and maybe winter, October in Canada is Women's History Month. Which brings us to ask how many of you are slowly working on the 150 Canadian Women quilt? Even if you just work on it 15 minutes a day, you will be surprised at how much you get done during October. 

One historical woman is the Honourable Jean Augustine. She was born in Grenada in 1937, raised by her grandmother (what would we do without grandmothers that believed in education) and immigrated to Canada in the early 1960's. She earned her Master's in Education while teaching school then became a school principal. Being a strong advocate for human rights, Jean Augustine was involved in training teachers in equality and diversity, and in the development and launch of Canada's official multiculturalism policy in 1971. She was also the first black woman elected to Canada's House of Commons and was there for 4 elections until retirement in 2006.

     Between platefuls of turkey, dressing and pumpkin pie, have you managed to get the 16th free block, Cathedral Windows by Jenny Doan completed? It's a fun block to make. The trick for us was to get the folded triangle to cover the center diamond square. We had to pin big time. What a great way to use up scraps! Nine squares in this little baby.

      Okay, back to the pumpkin pie. Wishing all of you a Canadian

Ohhh my, I'm so full of turkey. Mom says that tomorrow we are both back on the metabolic food or the vets will be giving us a major talking to. Hee Hee, good thing I don't understand vet talk I just have to look pretty. 

September 30, 2018

Bored? Cat Nap

   It's that time of year. You are back to a regular work schedule, routines are set, Christmas, yes Christmas, is just around the corner. About this time I get bored with routine and procrastinate the deadlines. Ugh, snow has been teasing us and I don't want to do anything. This summer I remember saying, I'll be glad when the cold comes because the fire smoke will be gone. Ha, be careful what you wish for.

A new study found the average person spends a total of two hours a day feeling bored. The top five boring things we have to do all the time are waiting on hold, dealing with slow Wi-Fi, sitting through video ads, opening junk mail, and waiting for websites to load, even if the Wi-Fi is decent. They forgot to put waiting on people to do things so we can move ahead. Today, all I want to do is cat nap with Kitty.

   This brings us to Splendid Sampler II's 15th free block, Cat Nap by Nicole Vos van AveztheWay too cute a block.

As usual no hand work, machine work only. Steps we did: 
  • draw the outlines for floor tiles, flower and kitty, 
  • fuse and decorative stitch the 3 yellow pieces,
  • freehand machine stitch the cat outline and flower and floor tiles. Did not floor tile stitch through cat,
  • decorative machine stitched the leaf pattern in the bottom tile,
  • Oops, just noticed haven't stitched a horizontal line. Go back and stitch the missed horizontal tile line,
  • Trim block.

   Remember the harness and the sit down protest. Well, it only took a couple of days to be released. The fun thing now is to sit at the door and meow and meow and meow to be let outside to explore. 
Such fun!