Monday, February 29, 2016

Who's Been Sitting In My Chair?

ADDISON....  Sigh.  That silly dog tried to stake claim to my recliner.  Not going to happen, Miss Addy.  We got this chair from Mom the last time we were up there visiting and I just love it.  It's really comfortable and has become my favorite place to sit.  Apparently the dog thinks it's comfortable too.

Two Silly Geese

These two Canadian Geese were just going into the water for a dip when we went out to the Old Lake yesterday.  I can't help but think about how graceful they look on the water, all peaceful and serene, yet you know underneath those feet are just a paddling away to keep them moving!

Baby Blue Done

I finished the Baby Blue quilt over the weekend.  It's been mailed off to Mom for her to give as a gift.  Glad to have it finished.  She should get it by Wednesday.

I did a loopy loop for the quilting.  It's my go to pattern, but I'm good at it, so why mess with perfection?  haha.  Not perfect by any means.

Need to get another quilt on the frame and keep moving forward on the pile of tops.

Also made a couple wonky star blocks this weekend.  They are coming along nicely, also.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Magic Number Is 55

55 more days until Paducah!  WooHoo!

It's funny how we latch onto things/events that are coming up.  I know it's always nice for me to have something to look forward to.  Maybe it just is a mental thing, but knowing something fun and different is coming up makes it a little easier to get through the everyday stuff.

Really need to get the Baby Blue quilt finished.  If it's not too cold in the basement tonight, I may go down and quilt it when I get home from work.  Tonight would be a good night to do that, since I have supper made already and don't have to cook when I get home.  Tomorrow I have plans to go out to dinner.  One of the local restaurants serves 'catfish curls' on Friday nights and they are really good.  Going to head over there tomorrow night with a friend and get an order.

Snow Day

Yesterday morning we woke up to a mess of snow and ice on the roads.  Our office closed, so I had a nice day at home.

I started off by cooking some chicken in the pressure cooker to use for another dish.  I planned on making chicken cacciatore later after Ev went to work, but once he saw the cooked chicken he convinced me to make it early so he could take some to work for his dinner.  Once that was made, I figured why not whip up a batch of cookies.  So I made those Chicago Crispies with raisins instead of chocolate chips (again, per Ev's request).  After that, I thought I might as well cook a pot of beef stew, just to have some variety.

After all that cooking and baking, I ended up in the sewing room for a while.  Made two wonky star blocks for the Paducah swap.  Those blocks are so much fun to make.  Lots of variety in them to keep things interesting.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Phone Woes

Before I get into my little rant about phones, I just want to say thank you to those who commented on the picture of the quilt in the frame in the last post.  It was made from the pattern given out as a mystery to the group QTMysteryQuilts on Yahoo Groups.  It was the most recent NYE mystery.

Now, about my phone...  Sigh.  Well, I have had my phone for a few years and it served me well over that time.  It has finally gotten to the point where I needed a new phone because it had too many issues.  It actually got to this point a couple months ago but I had to wait for one of our lines to have an upgrade to get a new phone.

That finally happened and yesterday I received a brand new smart phone.  Which promptly overheated after it's first full charge.  Sigh.  So now I have to go back to my old phone and wait until I get another new phone.  Ah well, if this is the worse thing to happen to me today, I'm doing pretty good!  :)

Monday, February 22, 2016

Baby Blue On Frame

I'm so happy to have this quilt on the frame and ready to start quilting!  I just pinned it yesterday, but when I get ready to start quilting I will baste it around the edges.  Still not sure how I will do the quilting.  Decisions, decisions!

While I was downstairs, I also put a different fan on the upright stand I have.  The old fan kicked the bucket last year.  That was no surprise, since it was probably older than me.  Luckily, I had a box fan that had cut outs in the right places, so I mounted it on the stand and I'm good to go.  It doesn't get hot in the basement where I have the frame, but sometimes it's just nice to have the air moving a little.

I think I'm going to quilt this with white thread.  I ended up putting a plain white backing on it, instead of the blue material I was thinking about.  Not sure what I will use for binding.

Bordering On The Edge

Here's the borders for the blue baby quilt.  I was very pleased with the way it turned out.  I made strip sets to make the two patch units and sewed them all together.  I didn't press them until they were attached to the center, because they had to be turned all different ways.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

The Sound Of My Machine

Do you know the sound of your machine?  I mean, do you know when it needs oil, or when it needs a new needle, or even when the bobbin is getting low by the sound?  I pretty much do, especially if I pay attention.

I was sewing on the blue baby quilt and had a drink set next to the clutch wheel.  The lid was actually touching the ribbed area of the clutch, so when I sewed, there was a little buzzing sound.  Not realizing this was coming from the drink lid, I started thinking I really had to oil the machine.  Then I figured it out.  haha.

Friday, February 19, 2016

68 Degrees In February!

We have some beautiful weather here today.  Unseasonably warm.  Enjoying the break, that's for sure.  Old Man Winter may not be done with us yet, but at least we have a few days of nice weather to enjoy.

Didn't sew last night.  Nick came over and we did his Federal taxes.  I did ours, too.  Got that chore out of the way.  Still have to do the State ones.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Does This Work?

Hmm, I was thinking about using the piece in the back for the backing on the baby blue quilt, but after mulling it over, have decided to go with a plain white for the back.  The problem is, I don't have any plain white big enough in my stash right now.  What to do, what to do...

Since the hubster is home during the day, I enlisted his services to run to the quilt shop and buy more white fabric.  Knowing that said hubster would not like this idea at all, I made it as painless as possible.  I called the shop, had them pick out the material and cut it, and even paid for it over the phone.  All he had to do was run in, give them my name, and he could grab the package and be out of the shop before anyone he knew saw him in there!  hahaha.  Being the good (if not reluctant) guy that he is, he did this for me.  I now have three yards of 90" white fabric to use for the backing and will even have some left over.

I'm happy.

From Strips To Four Patches

Since I didn't have to cook last night, I went up to the sewing room right away when I got home from work.  I cut the strips and sewed them together to make the border for the baby blue quilt.  The strips were turned into four patch units, which will be sewn together until they are long enough for the borders.  I hope to get that accomplished tonight.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Food Frenzy

Starting on Sunday and carrying through last night, I have been on a cooking and baking frenzy.  Sunday I made a huge pot of spaghetti sauce, a pan of rice krispy treats, and put together a casserole to be baked later.  Monday I baked a meat loaf and made mashed potatoes to go with it.  Tuesday I fried pork chops, added a missing ingredient to the casserole and baked it, made more spaghetti noodles, and baked a batch of blueberry muffins from scratch.

No, I am not pregnant.  hahahaha

Ev likes to take spaghetti to work, so he has the sauce and noodles for that.  Now that the casserole is also finished, we will have several dishes to choose from when we want to eat dinner.  Because of his work schedule and the fact that we eat at seperate times, this works out real good for both of us.

The blueberry muffin recipe came from Mennonite Girls Can Cook website.  I picked up a container of blueberries at Aldi yesterday and then had to run over to IGA to get the buttermilk, but it was worth it!  The batter is kind of thick.  It made a wonderful muffin and I'm going to watch and see when strawberries come in season, so I can get some of them and make strawberry muffins from the same recipe!

Maybe, just maybe, since I have all this food cooked and won't have to make dinner for a couple nights, I can motivate myself to get busy in the sewing room!

Dog Show

Over the past two nights I have watched the dog show on t.v.  Monday night I was very excited to see this beautiful German Shepherd, named Rumor, win the Herding Group.  That meant that she could advance to one of the seven slots to be judged Best In Show.

Rumor did not win Best In Show last night, but in my heart she did.  I just love German Shepherds.  I guess it goes back to the fact that my very first dog was a German Shepherd.  I sure did love that dog.

Snow Geese Again

Not sure you can see them, but there are two flocks of snow geese up in the sky flying over the road.  I noticed the geese for the first time this year last Friday.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

She Sews!

Clarice sews!  I did as much as I could to clean off the rust in the bobbin case then gave her a trial run.  I was very pleased with how she sewed!

I do think I will need to purchase a new bobbin case.  Even though this one worked, the tension was very tight and the screw was imobile to adjust it.  May work at it some more, but for now, at least I know the machine runs.  She does need a few little things, but I can get those when I have time.  No hurry.  Just real happy that she sews so nicely.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Not Much To Report

Didn't do any sewing last night.  In fact, I was in bed before 9 p.m., if you can believe that!  Guess I needed the sleep because I slept like a rock.

Tonight Diane and I are taking Lori out to dinner at the Mexican restaurant in Staunton.  We wanted to get her out of the house for a bit.  Lori lost her husband to cancer a few weeks ago.

Tomorrow I have the day off, so I would like to get the border on the baby blue quilt.  Maybe I can even manage to get it loaded on Gemma.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

All Prettied Up

When I was sewing on Polly last night I noticed she just had the little felt washers on her spool pins.  Well, that just won't do.  I made one spool pin doily right away and need to make a few more.  Clarice will be needing a couple, also.

My crochet skills certainly aren't what they used to be and especially aren't top notch when it comes to using tiny thread.  But I don't think the sewing machines will care.

Baby Blue Coming Along

Because it was cold outside, I decided to sew on Polly, my 15-91 last night.  Even though the sewing room would have warmed up eventually with the little space heater in it, I didn't want to leave Addy outside or downstairs alone.  Polly hadn't been used for a while, so it was a good time to give her some exercise!

Here's what I got accomplished.  I have the center portion of the baby quilt done.  Now I need to make the border and throw it on Gemma to quilt.

I just love the way my floor looks in this picture.  That laminate flooring was the best thing we ever did for the house.  It looks nice and is so easy to keep clean.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

My Snowy Drive

This was the field along side Old Route 66 when I was driving to work this morning.  Snow has been falling on and off for a couple days, not really accumulating much, but enough to cover the fields.  And it has been cold!  At lunch today the temp was only 14 deg. F!  Brrrr!

Messy Corner

This is one of the lost corners of my sewing room.  I have so much stuff piled here I don't even know what all is there.  What I need to do is get it all put away so everything is nice and neat again.

Didn't sew last night, which is no surprise as it was Monday night.  Nick and Olivia came over and watched some television with me.  I made these crescent rolls stuffed with eggs and cheese (and bacon for Ev and I) that turned out really good.  We had those and I also made Ev some grilled turkey sandwiches.

Tonight I'm not cooking, so maybe I will motivate enough to go up and sew.  Or bring something down to sew on Polly.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Very Pleased

I am extremely pleased with the condition of Clarice, my new Singer 301.  She doesn't have many scrapes or scratches in her paint and she cleaned up really nicely.

I took her top and bottom plates off and cleaned and oiled and lubricated where it was needed.  There were some dead roly poly bugs inside, but they were more like fossils, they were so old!

Her bobbin tire needs to be replaced.  Her foot pedal and electrical cord were toast.  Wasn't even going to attempt to use them.  I used the one for my 401 without any problems.  Since it was just the wires that were bad, I gave my dad the parts that came with her to see if he could rewire things.  If he can, great, if not, no big deal.

She also may need a new bobbin case.  I have it out and oiled the dickens out of it.  There is some surface rust on the inner parts of the bobbin case and I have been able to loosen and remove about half of it using a straight pin.  I think letting it soak up some oil might loosen more.  Who knows, I may be able to salvage this part.  If not, I have a case from my featherweight that will fit.  Those bobbin cases are expensive!  From $30 to $50!  I have a call in to a repair guy I know who might be able to get me one cheaper than that.

There were three oil wicks on the top that were pretty hard and dried out.  I oiled them from both sides, hoping that would get them functional again, but if not, they should be easy enough to replace.

I haven't tried to sew on her yet, but when I run her, she really hums along.  Very quiet machine, too!  They sure don't make 'em like they used to.

The seller on Ebay took extra care to package and ship her to me, for which I am very grateful.  All in all, I'm really happy with my purchase and hope to get many good years of sewing out of her.

Friday, February 5, 2016

I Got A Call

My husband called me at lunch and said that a package arrived for me!  He said it was as heavy as a bowling ball.  You know what this means, right?  Clarice has arrived!  Woohoo!  When I got all excited and told him "that's Clarice!" he groaned and made a comment about fava beans...  No, no, no, no!  Not from Silence of the Lambs!  From Rudolph!  Sigh.  This is going to be an ongoing debate, I can tell right now.  My daughter made the same connection as the hubster.  Sigh.

Maybe I should put a little red polka dotted bow on the machine.

Not Much To Report

That pretty much says it all.  I've been kind of lazy.  Last night I didn't do much of anything, quilt wise.  I do have a recipe for cookies I want to try, so maybe if I'm not too lazy tonight, I will get that done.  Or not.

Ev's supposed to work tomorrow afternoon, so that may be my big block of quilting time.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Big Blocks Are Done

I still need to press the last two strips on the white blocks, but then I will begin piecing the center of the top together.

I had thought that I wanted to make those small blue squares the same on the blocks as in the checkerboard border of white and blue squares, however, now I've decided to go with a different fabric in the border.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

It's A Hamburger Soup Kind Of Night

I have hamburger soup thawing out from when I made it a couple months ago.  That's going to be dinner tonight.  Easy!

My hamburger soup recipe is pretty simple.  Brown your ground beef.  Add beef stock and veggies.  I like to use onions, carrots, celery, corn, and potatoes.  Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and maybe some parsley or marjoram.  You could add noodles or rice, but for me, the potatoes are enough starch.  You can thicken it if needed with some corn starch.

Looking forward to a bowl of soup on a cold night!

Last night I tried to walk Addy right when I got home and got caught in the rain!  Don't think I'm going to walk her tonight because it's a little too cold.

Stealing Time

This morning before work I went upstairs to put a couple things away.  While I was up there, I stole a couple of minutes and sewed two seams together for one of the blocks in the baby quilt.  It had been on my mind that the strip sets I made would leave me one block short, so I fixed that issue this morning.  The pull to stay in my sewing chair and play was strong, but I had to go to work.  Have to make money to buy fabric, you know!  haha.

I also was scanning my daughter's old room trying to decide how I could use it to store some of my stash.  When I moved fabric stash into it a few years ago, she ended up moving home for a little bit, so I'm kind of worried if I move it in there, one of the kids might have to move home!  Not that I would mind them being home, I just know that's not what they want.

I'm also thinking about this 301 that is on it's way.  I am really hoping it doesn't need too much help to get sewing again.  If it fits in the cabinet the 401 is in, I'll be set.  But if not, I may go ahead with my DIY fix and cut into that table we bought a couple years ago with the intention of making a sewing cabinet out of it.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Magic Number Is 78

It's only 78 days until the Quilt Show in Paducah!  Just in case any one was wondering...

I Really Should Stay Off Ebay

Sigh.  Meet my newest addition to the family of sewing machines.  She's a Singer 301 and I'm anxiously awaiting her arrival.  I have named her Clarice.  Clarice as in Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer's girlfriend, not from Silence of the Lambs!

She is going to need a little love, but hopefully not a lot will have to be done before I can sew away on her.

Monday, February 1, 2016

More Pillowcases

Here are two pillowcases I made over the weekend.  I ended up making a total of four in the same fabrics.  Nick had asked me to wash four of his pillows, so while I had them at the house, I thought he might like them to come home with new pillowcases.  This was some of the pawprint material I had in my stash and some pretty striped material for the tops.  Not too feminine or too masculine.  I think he liked them.

Bably Blue

I started a blue baby blanket for my mom.  She needs it for a gift.  I decided to do the same pattern as the one I just made, using the 2 1/2" strips.  This one is going to be done in blues with a white background.

I finished all of the colored squares over the weekend and have a good jump on getting the white squares all done.  This was the colored squares before I had the two sides put on them.

It's going fairly quickly.  Since I'm not doing it as a mystery, I have condensed the clues into quicker ways to piece the blocks.

Getting Stuff Done

Not that anyone wants to hear about health issues, but I have been absent from the blog for a few days due to being busy getting health stuff done.  I'm fine, just had to take care of some of those lovely tests we are urged to do at age fifty.

All done for now and hopefully won't have to have them done again for many years!