Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Exciting events!

Hi Y'all! I have been working pretty much non-stop for a while, and what a blessing a day off is! Spring is officially here, and we are greeted by this lovely she a moth? Anyway, she was on a tree in the front yard, and was happy to pose for me.
Above doesn't look like much...but I can say it was labor intensive! I pressed for hours on the back and top of my blue and yellow monstrously big quilt, so I could send it to be quilted. I am so proud of this! I cut threads, and cut threads, and cut threads! Can't wait to see this on my bed, all finished. It is all folded, ready to go in the box to send.
I layered this little quilt for hand quilting...that kind of quilting is so much fun! So relaxing...
My friend Joyce sent some fabrics from Arizona, so what did I do? I made spools! Klosjes!! I love them!
Is anyone out there working on this project? What else for a background but...plaid!! I love the blocks, they are found at Bunny Hill, and the patterns are free.
The second of the snowman blocks. I have a third prepped, but not done yet.
Do you ever sift through those tiny cuttings, thinking, wow, those are sure pretty...and then toss them? You can keep them you know...just get some in a pile on two layers of cotton batting and a backing, arrange them like you want them, spray with spray starch and press the daylights out of it, then I just quilt across from edge to edge and side to side. Presto! A fun hot pad, guaranteed to protect your hands while getting things out of a hot oven...and you did not have to throw away those tiny trimmings! I still need to bind this one.
OK, for the exciting stuff. For a couple days, we saw this tiny poodle (about 12 pounds, maybe), running around our house and part of the neighborhood. When we approached her, she would duck and run like anything. Well, dear husband eventually got close enough that she trusted him, and now she just eats out of his hand! She is overgrown with fur and dirty, and hungry...and darling! So full of life and fun. We have tried to find the owner around the neighborhood, but we have come to the conclusion that she has been dumped here. We have so many animals just show up around our neighborhood, it is unbelievable. So....I will keep you posted what happens with her, she is a little love, and eats well, and cuddles better! A very sweet lap dog type lady.

***************************Nursing notes!!!!!!!!!!!***********************

Well, this is the REALLY EXCITING part! I had a patient come in, fresh from the tele. floor, with positive cardiac enzymes and chest pain. Exactly my age. A huge mountain of a guy, nearly 400 pounds and 6'6''. So, off he went to cath. lab, and this test showed that he had a huge clot in his left main (the large artery that feeds the left side of the heart). This is a killer...and the doctor was shocked that he had not died immediately. Well, long story longer, he went for emergency bypass surgery, and had a balloon pump placed, and guess what? I went to surgery with him! I totally got to see the entire bypass surgery, and truly, I am forever awed. Wow! Magic in a surgical team's hands. Long day, and a routine one for the team, but I will never forget it. After 20 years of this nursing thing, I still am awed each day.

Today? The patient is sitting up eating lunch and walking in his room! Yippee! A save!!!


Thanks for listening...and have a super day!


Saturday, March 27, 2010

And the results are in!!

Hi all!

I hope everyone out there is enjoying the weekend, I am loving it so far! I mowed the lawn, and the weather is so gorgeous, it is hard to stay inside.

Would you like to see a very cool string quilt? Lyn at Bluebird quilts is making a string quilt for Heart Strings, she is a Heartstrings helper! Her quilt is just gorgeous...take a peek and leave her a comment, she really deserves it.

So, from last post...we quilters are life loving people who love to eat! I really enjoyed reading each comment about what we liked to eat the most...and here are some rough results:

1. Chips (maybe because I mentioned them, but hey, they are my top pick!)
2. Chocolate, Yum!
3. Ice Cream!
4. Warm cookies from the oven!
5. Pasta!
6. Fabric! Yep, me too...we don't eat it, but we are addicted to buying it, LOL!
7. Licorice!
8. Pastries!
9. Pretzels!
10. Sun sweet Plum sweets (these are sooo good)!

Anyway, I think that makes a well rounded tummy is well rounded, LOL! Not really, I am doing much better on the diet this week, but I thought it was fun to hear what everyone loved to eat.

Have a super rest of the weekend!


Friday, March 26, 2010

The great potato chip debacle....

This is one of the reasons I do not have anything left in the 1 1/2 inch strip box...I cut a lot of them up into 3 1/2 inch strips. Then, I made mini-fence rail blocks.The pattern is hard to see, for me at least, unless I are backed away from looks all jumbled to me, when I am up close. It has been fun making these blocks, because I am remembering, as I sew, all the projects I have made from these fabrics...and enjoying it so much. I am now glad I took the time to cut up the scraps and save the strips! I have 2 inch and 2.5 inch strips too. Just noticed, I sure have a lot of red in there. I have some strips now in that bin again, to start saving, thanks to Joyce, my Arizona friend! I have to stop making these blocks now, because I don't have any more light strips in that I will be saving up when I do projects until I can make some more blocks.
This is when I was just messing around and seeing if this would work...a big jumble of fabric collections or matchy-matchy here! I envy you coordinated girls!! You have talent I just don't have.
A string wallet, as mine was really worn out. I think pink is in order for spring, don't you?
More scrappy blocks, these are all 2 inch pieces, in the four patches. You can tell I am bound and determined to use all the littlest scraps up, right?? Lol!

My friend Finn and I are going to do the Jelly Roll Sampler together, and I can't wait! Should be so much fun!

THE GREAT POTATO CHIP DEBACLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

As some of you know, I have been on weight watchers for about 7 weeks now, and have lost 10 pounds. I was feeling pretty smug, just thinking...hey, I can do this, I just have to stick with it and put in the time...and then

Work folks threw a potluck!! And someone...someone...brought ruffles potato chips. NO big deal, right? Except when you are a potato chipaholic!!! I ate just a couple...then a handful...then two handfuls!!

You get the idea...I totally blew the week, lost nothing on the scale, and look like a bloated wart hog. Potato chips, OK, I get it! I have no control, and must stay away from these!!

What is your weakness? What do you just love, love, love to eat!!!??

Have a super day!


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Quilt-ish stuff...

Now for some quilting content! Stina of designed these lovely heart stitcheries around February...hey, I am only a month and 1/2 behind! I stitched some of the blocks, then played around with some orphans and scraps and came up with this. I think I will crazy quilt it, you know, with embellishments and stitchery.
One of the stitchery blocks...
And don't you think that these blocks should fit into the quilt somewhere? They were a gift from a dear friend, Joyce in Arizona. They are so cute, very small, and so precise. I love them! She also sent Christmas fabrics so I could make a replacement Christmas star quilt for the one I botched up...and she sent a bunch of 1 and 1/2 inch strips! I have some again, now!! Such gorgeous fabrics, too. Thank you, Joyce!
While all the hospital drama was going in this last week, I went out of the hospital for a little bit to get a small lunch...and the quilt shop was 3 blocks away, so I ended up there for a few minutes. An older lady came in with an armload of 1930's quilts, she said her mother had passed away and she did not know what to do with her old quilts. The quilt shop took them and passed them along free of charge to anyone who would give them a good home. Here is the one they gave to me. It was dirty, I thought, hey, just give it a try, and I washed it on gentle. It came out sparkling and fresh! It was quilted all in purple thread, by hand, and the back was turned to the front for the binding. It was a comfort to me last week...the batting was very thick, I think maybe hand made, bunched up a little, but very warm. It has a few tattered places, but on the whole is intact.
Here is the block. I have not seen this pattern before. She used lots of dress making scraps, and lots of different purples to quilt it. I love it!!!

Husband update: He continues to do better, just terribly swollen and tender of course, but I am so glad to have him here. Thank you so much to everyone whose thoughts and prayers held us up during this very scary experience!!! You are wonderful to me.

Have a super day!


Friday, March 19, 2010

Drama mostly over!

HI all:

First and foremost, I want to thank all of you for your prayers and thoughts during this time, while dear husband has been in the hospital. After my last post, I got a call in the middle of that night to return to the hospital where he had a heart rate in the 30's and blood pressure very low, and he had stopped kidney function. He went to ICU after recovery room, not his regular room, and he has remained in intensive care. We got his blood pressure improved with Levophed and IV fluids(his weight is up 20 pounds), and guess what? They sent him home late today. So I am so grateful, now we are just worrying about all the excess fluid and wondering about getting some cautious diuretics to get it off without dumping his BP down low again. So that is where we are! But he is here, he is OK, and my heart is rejoicing for that!!!

Again, my thanks to you!!!


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

May I ask a favor? It is all about emotion!

Hi all: It is all about Emotions!!!

The last 36 hours have been a whirlwind. Please bear with me, I must share this...

Fear: Dear husband started having horrible pains in his right flank area, and then rigor, then fever.
then difficulty breathing, at this point I scooped him up and ran for the hospital, (a scoop and run)

Impatience: After the emergency run to the hospital at 70 miles per hour through town, husband gasping all the way (the normally most stoic man in the world), we waited...and waited...and waited...and the gallbladder scan was negative, the blood work was negative, the EKG was negative, and the kidney stone scan was negative. So we stayed overnight and waited for a CT scan of the abdomen.

Anger: Dear husband wanted to leave...wanted action right now, or better than that, yesterday! I was a little peeved too, because I was not about to let him leave.

Relief: CT scan showed APPENDICITIS!!!! WBC's going up... AT last, a diagnosis...

Worry: How was I to get a surgeon stat and anesthesiologist that I trusted to do an emergency surgery? Prayer was the answer...and a wonderful surgeon just happened to be available.

Anticipation: More waiting, and hoping, and text messaging and prayer...all to find that dear husband sailed through the surgery with flying colors!!!

Relief and gratitude: In recovery now...and I am at home, and collapsed. But I wanted to write this down before I forgot all the emotion in the busyness that is to come. He will require lots of antibiotics, as the appendix was bursting and filled with pus and infection. And lots of post-op TLC.

Love: I am so grateful that our needs are met in advance by our Lord, that dear husband is OK, and we are both so full of gratitude and love.


Would be please send a prayer, or kind thought, or spirit filled feeling into the wind for us? I would so appreciate it...thank you so much, and thank you for listening.

Hugs, Julie

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


After working all weekend, I decided that after the housework was completed, I had earned a sew day! After all, it is raining and I can't work here I went! I completed a dozen spool blocks...and I officially love them! Many bloggers are doing these, and I made mine 3 inches finished. They are so cute and little! I will have to get one of you to look at my final layout, as I see one block is turned wrong. Good thing the blocks are not sewn together yet.
I finished the hand quilting on the folklore quilt.
But the biggest news is that I received a quilt back from Darcie!!! She is the most wonderful quilter...I love the day when I get a quilt back from her. This was the quilt I attempted to machine quilt and made a botch of it, and all of the blocks were made by friends at the hospital where I work. I love it, and have the binding on, just waiting for a moment to hand stitch it down...or several moments!
Here is a picture of the texture...she does all her quilting free hand, no pantographs, just a dance across the quilt.
Hmmm, does anyone know the name of this block? I cut out 20 of them...all in plaids for the main fabric. Some pretty BRIGHT plaids!! Should be fun to see how they come out. A great friend in Arizona has identical plaids to these.

Does size matter?? Hee! I made a tiny little quilt...out of leftover 1/2 square triangles. Precise it's not, but is!!!

Hope each of you has a wonderful day!


Monday, March 15, 2010

I did not get to go to the quilt show!!!

Well, at least not with the DFW gang on Saturday...sniffle, sniffle! I wanted to go on Saturday, but I have to work a lot of weekends, so could not go. I will not give up! Someday I will be able to meet those ladies!!

I did this block for the Jelly Roll quilt along...all from one jelly roll. I mean, I usually don't use anything matchy/matchy, so this will be fun to see how it all turns out. Fun block, by the way!!
Just a hint...I am working on Lyn's hexagon blocks that she sent for rescue. These blocks first needed to be stabilized, as they are 70 + years old. Then I blanket stitched them down. will have to wait and see!
I finished the border on the little scrappy quilt, and I like it!! Done is good!

*****************Nurse's Notes************************

The Marine bypass patient went further code situations. I still don't think anyone knows why he did that, hmmm, hope he does not have to come in to the hospital again for that.

We have two little old ladies who linger in our unit, both on the ventilator, both unresponsive, both there for more than a month now. I pray they will be OK, poor things, and both husbands of 50 + years are so dear. There is quite a community that forms in the waiting room, common worries and fears, common prayers...they are quite a support for each other.


Have a super day!!!


Monday, March 8, 2010

Bordering on insanity...

Not really...I have not lost it yet. But I will say, borders many times are much more work than the body of the quilt, at least for me. I have just a little bit more to go on this zig-zag border, and the quilt top will be done. I have emptied my one and one half inch strip and square bin to make this little quilt, so I can say I have busted some stash! Little bits...but hey, every little bit used is good, right??

********************Nursing Notes*******************************

We recently had a Marine in the hospital, retired...he was in for bypass surgery. I recovered him from surgery, and all of the sudden about 2 hours out of surgery, I lost his blood pressure. Fluids, pressers, prayers...nothing was working!! Then all of the sudden it all came back and all was hunky-dory.

Flash to yesterday...4 days post op. This patient, who is an older man, was doing just peachy. No problems, all his lines out, waiting to go home, really. He all of the suddenly went grey, eyes rolled back, lost his pressure, passed out...for no discernible reason again!!! Hmm, I have no idea what is happening with this guy...but something majorly is the matter. I refused to transfer him out until the doctor came and evaluated trouble again, I guess, but that was the right thing to do for the patient. It was funny...a big biker gang came in to see him. Tattoos, black jacket, jangling chains, the works! I checked them out pretty well before I would let them in...and all their clothing proclaimed that they were marines too, retired. I guess they just all ride motorcycles together, but they were sure menacing looking, from a distance! A more respectful, nicer bunch of guys I have never met..."Yes, Ma'am, and anything we can do for you...". Just nice!!!

Have a great day!!! Really...please do!


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

1.5 inch scrappy progress

This is how far I have progressed on the scrappy five inch blocks. Bonnie Hunter has this quilt in her book...I just made the blocks smaller. Each block has 25 pieces, and was such fun to piece. I am adding a zig-zag border...but my fingers and wrists are sore, so I will leave that for another day.
Above is the larger version I made last year with the tan background (muslin), and the smaller current version. All the fabric in both are scraps from the strip and square bins.

This picture does not do this pattern is Kaaren of the Painted Quilt's pattern...her first Friday freebie for January. I loved it and had the stitchery done within days, but did not get it made into anything. I just finished this tiny pillow...and just love it. It is so cute! One for each month would be such fun!

Back to work for the fun is over for a while! I changed my blog list, so I can try and keep up with each of you better. Thank you to Karen for helping me! She has an amazing blog...a must see!

Each of you: have a wonderful week!!


Monday, March 1, 2010

Bitty Bits

Hi everyone! Thanks so much for all your words of encouragement from last post...I am going to get a walking foot, or better yet...maybe a sewing machine? I would love a new one, mine is a $79.00 one from Walmart. Maybe that is not the exact price, but it was under $100.00. It has been fine, but has a few tension tangles at times. What is your favorite piecing machine??

Above is the big blue and yellow sampler...the borders are now attached. Yippee!! I need to piece a backing. At this point, it is about 100 x 108 inches. Pretty big for me...the biggest top I have ever pieced, in fact!! I had a ball doing it!!
And now for something a little smaller...remember Bonnie Hunter's scrappy blocks? I was wondering if I could use my 1.5 inch strips and make these blocks, and this is what I came up with. They are so cute and little! I plan to make 12 of these, for just a little wall quilt to hand quilt on. This will use a little bit up of the bin of 1.5 inch strips/squares.
I finished hand quilting Lori of Humble Quilts doll quilt. I love this so much, thank you dear Lori. I made a motif...cut out of a spare circular, kind of like a pioneer quilter would use, anything at hand. This is what I quilted in the cheddar blocks.
Here is the whole thing after washing...I love it! Very old fashioned looking, I think.
I enjoy hunting and gathering rocks. I found this one, kind of hollowed out, and made a candle holder out of it.
Out of thrown away antibiotic bottles from the hospital, I made these candle holders. I should put some tiny colored rocks or something in the bottom...hmmm, will try that. Guess I am just in a crafty mood!
We went to a wonderful state park, McKinley Falls state park in Austin Texas, recently. This is one of the falls. Have no idea who the guy was...I was just shooting at the falls. Water gives me such energy, I love water falls, creeks, rivers, etc. Do you???

Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend...and has a wonderful week!!