Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A New Year is coming!


 Happy New Year's Eve...or Happy New Year, depending on where you are!  I have been working on more applique flower blocks.  These are all prepped and ready to go.
Above are my blocks for the next clue in the Quiltville Mystery quilt.  Looks a little halloweenish, don't you think?  But I am loving the plaids!!  Just 116 more of these babies to go! I have a few more four patches, and then this step to go, then I will be caught up.  Please see Bonnie's post here to see what colors and progress other quilters are up to!


Just thinking about the New Year...what exactly do I want to do?  I definitely want to work on UFO's, and have several ready to go, picked out and ready to stitch.  I also want to incorporate more applique in my quilting.  So I am thinking of what to do along that line, but first, I am going to finish the applique flower blocks above.  Only about 12 more to go!!  I also want to do some tutorials...maybe I can share some of my shortcuts, if anyone would be interested...


I wish each of you a marvelous, fun, quilting filled New Year!


Julie

Thursday, December 26, 2013

A few little things that I have been doing...

 I have been a busy, busy girl, as we all are at this time of year!  But...if I have blocks prepped?  I can stitch them in the car!!  I finished these blocks above, minus a little needed embroidery on one or two.  I bound a quilt...that is a big deal, LOL!!  I love the slow stitching of binding a quilt by hand...
 Janet!!  sent the above wonderful ornaments!!  They are tiny, tiny, tiny!!  The little snowman just kind of wanted to be in the picture...I am not in charge at my house, the inanimate objects are, LOL!  Anyway, Janet was raising money for a very worthy cause, and she was generous enough to send these...and STRINGS!!!!  of plaids!!  Of course I screeched with joy...

Thank you, Janet!!  Visit her HERE!!

And my dear friend Lyn sent these wonderful gifts all the way from Australia.  Thank you so much, Lyn...I am so blessed to know you!!  And I will really enjoy making these projects!!




I hope your Christmas was wonderful, each and every one of you!!
Back to work tomorrow for me!


Julie

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!!!

No pictures or anything but a heartfelt, most sincere wish for a wonderful Christmas for each one of you!  Your humor, talent, and love shines out to the world through your blogs, and I am so blessed to know every one of you!

Merry Christmas!!!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Christmas is coming!!

 I have been working on these blocks...they finish at 6 inches.  Loving working on these!!  They are so portable and just fun to stitch. I am about half done with the lot of them.
 Some of these still need to be blanket stitched and embroidered.
 I found this little chair at my local quilt shop, and have been eyeing it for months.  So, I decided to get it and display my little quilts on it.  It is a child's chair, and it is just right for displaying my little quilts.


How is your Christmas preparation going?  I am about done here, ready for Jesus's birthday!!


******************Nurse's notes*********************

A smart little nurse practitioner saved one of our patients yesterday...yep, a nurse!  The patient was just not responding to what we were doing for him...she happened by the room and a little voice told her to go in there! She was on her way out the door, for home, after a long shift.  She followed that little intuitive voice, and found a very sick patient, having difficulty breathing and going into sepsis syndrome (severe infection).  He ended up transferring to me, his nurse in CCU, and after extensive treatment and tests, is on the right track to getting well!!  He really could have gone either way...He was truly teetering on the edge of life and death.  I am so proud of her!!

So...do you follow your intuition?  Do you ever have little things happen that have no real evidence of why...but you just follow a hunch?  I would love to hear your stories!!





Hope you all have a great day,

Julie


Monday, December 16, 2013

Sidetracked with Spring!! Tiny Tulips!

Well, hmmmm...I got a little sidetracked!  I saw a wonderful tulip pattern on line, at Primitive Gatherings, and after receiving the pattern, I wondered...what would happen if I made the blocks tiny!?!  3 inch tulip tiny!!  So, Tiny Tulips was born!!  Very quickly prepped, this will be blanket stitching applique, and I love that, with sewing thread, due to the small size of the blocks.  Springtime, anyone?    Guess it depends on how cold it is where you are!!

Have a great day, everyone!!

Julie

Friday, December 13, 2013

Brandywine Designs!! and mystery progress too! and a gift in the mail!!!

 The third step of Bonnie Hunter's Quiltville mystery was posted!!  I have all the pinwheels cut out, and a few made...so do you think this might be the layout?  What is your guess, all you mystery lovers out there?!  Please see this LINK to go to the latest Quiltville Link up post!
 I recently ordered some patterns for Christmas.  I just love applique, but really have not done a ton of it...you all know I am a scrappy piecer, LOL!!  But this coming year...I am dreaming in applique!  So, I ordered some patterns from Brandywine Design.  I very rarely advocate for a company...but this one I can really brag about!!!  Not only was their customer service very fast, but when I received the package, it was just so neatly put together and lovely...it was just a treat!!  And...they put in some special pins based on the blocks from their Wooly Critter Sampler below.
 Wooly Critters!!!  I love animals, and this sampler will be just so much fun to stitch!!  Can't wait for this one!!
 Another sampler, just right for spring.  So, you can visit them here...Brandywine Design...maybe we can do a Wooly Critter Sampler together if some people are interested in the coming year!!!

So lets brag about those companies who are just superior!!
I received the most wonderful box in the mail!!  Recently, I have been studying about angels in the bible and in fiction and literature.  Deanna, my friend from Utah, sent me the most wonderful book all about angels!!  And also a huge box of scrappy wonderfulness...I just loved the whole thing!  Most of all, I am so thankful for friends who think of me with such a thoughtful gift...thank you Deanna!!




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


I had written a big paragraph about a very sick patient, a young patient...a sweet darling patent!!  But it was so sad, when I read what I wrote, that I deleted it all.  I asked for the sickest patient on the floor, for the challenge, but also to be of service to the family (I knew them).  It is a sinking feeling when you come back the next day and the room and bed are empty.

So this is your assignment, if you choose to accept it!!  Go and find your most precious loved ones and hug them tight and tell you that you love them!!  Make up with them if you are in a snit...just go do it...time is short and waits for no man...or lady either!!

Thanks for listening to the nurse's notes...just an outlet for me...please skip these if you are here for just quiltish stuff!!!


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Have a great day, everyone!!

Julie

Monday, December 9, 2013

A Mystery!!

 At last!  I have decided what to do about Bonnie Hunter's Quiltville Mystery quilt!!  The logical choice for me?  PLAIDS!!  I really do not have yellows, or oranges, not enough anyway to make an entire quilt, so I chose to substitute some different colors.  I had a biggish piece of orange/rust colored plaid, and some green plaid and I bought the black instead of blue, because the quilt shop had the black, but not enough blue...and the very light yellow/tan is also from the stash.  SO!!  Off I go!  I am caught up with clue number two, which was a very fun clue to piece, by the way!!  So thanks to Bonnie for another fun mystery quilt!!!  I am excited about clue number three, coming up on this Friday.  You can also join in...not too late at all...just go to Quiltville!!  Who knows what the final quilt will look like, but I delight in playing with the little quilt pieces, LOL!
It has been very, very cold and icy here, at least for this part of the country, this whole weekend. All businesses, and even all the churches were closed.  But worst of all, my marathon was cancelled!!  No refunds, as all the proceeds go to charity...but I guess it was worth it if it saved one person from getting hurt on the ice. 25,000 runners were expected.   I was doing the 1/2 marathon, and was so ready!  Oh well...I guess I will keep training and be extra ready for the next one.

I know I am silly at times, but I really worry about the animals outside in such weather.  The cows and horses and sheep, of course, but the little ones too, like this little squirrel I spied in one of our trees yesterday.  He was cuddled up with himself, trying to keep warm! I had to snap his picture... Poor baby...but I saw him frisking around the yard today on the snow, so I guess he made the night OK. Almost all of the birds are gone for the winter, but I saw a red headed woodpecker today, and a few sparrows.  Tough little babies, out in this cold!!



Have a  great day, everyone, and Happy Monday!!  TGIM!!


Julie




Monday, December 2, 2013

Are you doing Bonnie's mystery??!

 Well, are you?  I am still deciding what colors to use in Bonnie Hunter's Quiltville mystery!!  I need to shake a leg, don't you think??  Mean while, I am in a tiny piecing mood....above are 3 inch churn dash blocks.
 Two inch bow ties...
And 4 inch baskets!!  Need to trim that dog ear and threads!

I have decided to piece 30 minutes each night before bed.  I can finish two baskets, five bowties, and two  churn dashes in that time.  In a years time, I could have three quilts worth of tiny blocks!!

Back to the mystery...I just do not have very many orange fabrics at all....and very, very few yellows.  So, I am still pondering what colors to use.  I am sure it will come to me!!!  I love the first clue!!

Have a wonderful day, each of you!!

Julie

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Thankful!

 Good Morning!!  Happy Wednesday to you!  Do you remember the block of the week for Summer 2010?  From Primitive Gatherings?  Well, I participated in that, and made the quilt that was offered.  The blocks were three inch finished applique flowers, alternating with nine patches.  I loved it!!  So...I am doing it again....in a bigger size!  I enlarged the patterns to 6 inch squares, and am appliqueing the blocks as I go.  I have these nine patch blocks from the Celebration nine patch block swap, and I am using them for the alternate blocks.  I have enjoyed blanket stitching these blocks more than anything in a long, long time!  I think you can still get the pattern from Primitive Gatherings, at least it was there last time I looked.  I have lots of blocks to go still, and lots of work left on the ones I have prepped.
This is part of the Temecula Countdown to Christmas quilt.  Please click on the link to make your own version of their gorgeous quilt!!  I started out making these little stars, and somehow, I just could not do them very well.  I think maybe my seam allowance is off just a little bit, because they are far from perfect, LOL!  Anyway, I decided to make this little quilt instead.  You really cannot see it, but I hand quilted in the plain squares, and sewed buttons from reclaimed shirts in the two inch stars.  The binding is the most fun part, for me...it has a built in little flange that is part of the binding.  This was on Pinterest, and you can see the technique HERE.  I really ended up liking this little quilt a lot...much more than when I initially saw my wonky little stars, LOL!!  I think that it is fun to make patterns your own...go your own way...do your own thing!!  I encourage everyone to just let loose and create whatever you want to...it is great fun!!  I want to thank Temecula quilt company for providing such fun little patterns through their blog for no charge, just out of the goodness of their hearts...these little quilts are wonderful and great fun to make!!


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

I had the most wonderful patients these past few days!!  Just telling you about personalities, not the private medical stuff.  For me to remember later...don't want to forget these dear patients!!  One patient was an older fellow, and he was called "Cowboy"  He said that his daddy called him that from the time he was born, and that he never knew his real name until he went to school.  What a dear, dear man...his wife died after a long wonderful marriage, and he reconnected much later with his junior high sweetheart, and they are just so sweet together!!  Loved taking care of this couple...

Another patient was a Cajun from New Orleans.  What a dear, sweet man he was too!!  He told me tales of cooking, and celebrations, and Mardi Gras.  He said I just have to go, just once!!  I wondered why his wife did not come to see him, but at the end of his hospitalization, she came up...with their son who is 50 years old with cerebral palsy, with profound deficits.  His wife had been home taking care of their son, an infant really, at 50 years old.  The sweetest people you ever want to meet.  I think that adversity can break a person and make them bitter...or it can make them strong and sweet and better!!  Obviously this was the case here.  Anyway, both patients blessed me every time I stepped into the room!!



************************************************************


I am so thankful for my life, and for our dear creator, and for his many blessings every day that I am showered with.  I sincerely wish you a most wonderful Thanksgiving this year and each day of the year!  As for me?  I will be working at the hospital, in charge on my floor this holiday.  So I am cooking today and we will enjoy the wonderful food for many days!!!



Julie  



Monday, November 18, 2013

Finished with strings for a while? Ha!!

 Happy Monday!!  I just can't leave those strings alone!  I was just going to make a few string blocks, strictly  for fun, with no plan in mind...but then the basket idea sprang into my brain, and then...I was off to the races!  So here it is:  Fiesta Baskets!
 Close up of the border...which by the way was great fun to make!  All out of the 2.5 inch string/square drawer.  Thanks Bonnie Hunter for the scrap savers system; the system works tremendously well for me!  The baskets are 8 inch finished.
And a favorite block!  This quilt top is made entirely of gifted and saved strings.  Wide strings and narrow ones too....just a whole bunch of scrappy fun!!  Now...maybe I will do something else, other than a string quilt!  (but don't count on it...)







Have a great day, everyone!!!

Julie

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Angels among us!

 The angel idea is taking shape for me.  I put tiny churn dash blocks around her.  She is a January Angel!!  Blanket stitching last night during TV time was fun, as blanket stitching is the method of my applique.  Not sure about her expression yet, still considering!
 A few years ago, Lisa Bongean of Primitive gatherings did a block of the week in summer, and I participated and finished the project.  I love those patterns!  I have been eager to do some applique, so I am going to make the blocks bigger, increasing the size from 3 inches to six inches.  Here is my first block.
 And here is my second block!  These will alternate with nine patches, all made and just waiting to be put in a quilt!
And Leanne!!  What a great idea you had, to make a purse out of the little top from last post...that is just what I did!  It is really more a tote bag size, and I love it!  Thank you for the great idea!!



***************************Health notes********************************

I think as Americans, we are mostly addicted to sugar.  I know I love it, LOL!  With high fructose corn syrup used in so many products we buy at the grocery store, we all got hooked on it as kids, I think...but to me?  It is like a poison!  I feel so tired and bad after consuming sugar...just yucky.  The damage to the pancreas and to the internal linings of arteries is evident, as well as many other body parts and pieces!  So....here I go again...off the sugar!!  I feel so very much better without it.

I have been walking/running in preparation for a half marathon.  Since my back surgery, the doctor said, "NO MORE RUNNING!", so I have been taking it very easy, but there is something so fun about getting out in the fresh, crisp air and putting some miles on my shoes!  That makes me feel great!  so the healthy answer for me is less carbs/sugars and more exercise!!...........and more quilting!!!


Have a great day, everyone!!

Julie


Saturday, November 9, 2013

Thank you!!

 Happy Weekend!!  I at last got my latest string top together.  Goose on a string...what do you think?  Good name or not?  The day is fair, a light breeze, just very nice in the low 70's.  So I spread the quilt top out on the lawn.  As far as my future plans go, I just never tire of strings, but will try to concentrate on something else for a while.  MAYBE, LOL!!
 Here is an idea for using some 1/2 square triangles, if you have little baggies of them like I do.  Needs a good pressing!!
Another string top picture...and some little critter is digging little holes in the grass back there!  Maybe someone is SQUIRRELING away nuts for the winter??


*******************Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I so appreciate everyone sharing their concept of what an angel is.  I loved hearing your thoughts so much!!  I had always heard that when people passed away, they became angels.  I don't know if this is true or not, and that is why I was asking...so thank you so much for your input, dear friends!!!


Have a great day, all!!!


Julie K

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Called off work again, so I am sewing!

 Maybe the angel block needs some borders?  Just experimenting here.  I am thinking I could make one for each month.  Hmmmm...just thinking!!
 I am in the process of making a few mug rugs, using up strings and little leftovers bits and pieces of blocks.  These will be fun to hand quilt on road trips!
And Temecula stars!!  These are fun!  Mine are not perfect, but I will get better as I practice...or not...either way I love them!!  two inches finished...they are itty bitty!!



I would love for you to share with me your concept of what an angel is.  Some people responded last post, and I thank you so much for that.  I have a specific reason for wanting to know...thank you for sharing your thoughts with me!!



Julie

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

I got to go to Houston!!


 HI Everyone!!  Hope this post finds all you well and having a great and productive day!!  Above is a Moth in the Window block.  At least that is what I am calling it...do you know another name?  I love my plaids, as you know, so I cut out a whole bunch of these blocks.  Only got one made though!!
 I got to go to the Houston quilt show!!  Amy Simms and her group were selling little quilts for Alzheimer's, as they have done the last several years.  The above little one just spoke to me!!  It was made by a quilter in Hawaii, and I love it!!  The day we were there, shortly after we bought our little quilts, the total added up to one MILLION DOLLARS that this fine group has collected for research for this terrible disease.  So that made me very happy that I helped, LOL!!
 But the biggest thing!!!  See this heart above?  And I love hearts, by the way...(I need to do a post on all my heart quilts that I have made!)  Anyway, this heart is very, very special.  It is made all of buttons, and came all the way from Australia, beautiful wrapped with an angel pin among the ribbons.  It was hand carried to me by my friend Lyn!!  Lyn and I have been corresponding for six years, and I at last got to meet her in person!!  She and her husband had the opportunity to take a trip to the USA, and came to Houston, to the quilt show as one of their stops.  We got to meet her and saw the show together, and had just a wonderful time!!  Thank you, Lyn...we had such a fun time with you both!!  Lyn bought the cutest ladybug quilt for Alzheimer's too.
Angels....I have just been hankering to make an angel quilt!!  So I am experimenting.  Above is a rough draft version.

May I ask you a question?  What is an angel to you?  Would you please tell me your understanding of what an angel is??  I have heard many different things, and I feel like I need to sort it out in my mind...please share!!




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


We had the most delightful lady in our hospital...she was 92 years young, and she had a twin that came to see her!!  I just loved them both...full of vinegar, they were just so young and trotted around the hospital floor like people 50 years younger...both of them looked like they had just come from the beauty shop, gorgeous white hair waving!!!  I sure hope I can be so happy and cheerful and energetic at age 92!!



A funny sight...I drove up to the hospital on Monday, and there was a nurse pushing a gurney full of clocks!!!  He drove it out on the lawn and left it there?  I was dumbfounded...then he explained that the clocks all had to be reset due to Daylight savings time changes, and that the clocks were atomic clocks, and would not reset in the basement where he worked!  OOOOooooooohhhhhh...now I get it!!

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Have a great day, all!!!

Julie

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Trick or Treat!

 OK, so here is the state of the union!!  All the pieces and parts are done, it is just a matter of putting them all together.  Here is is all laid out, so I can pick up the pieces in order, and get it all in one piece!
 Another view...
 And a close up!!
 Loris!!  Thank you so very much...what a treat to get a surprise in the mail!!  Fabric, strings, and a gorgeous fall time quilt...I love it all!!  Please see her blog here.
Loris sent this card too...so...do something today that makes your heart sing!!!!



Julie

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Sloooooww Stitchin' Sunday!

 I recently did a road trip, and that time is hand quilting time for me.  Above is a little quilt, in my favorite string pattern from Evelyn Sloppy's string book.  I love her patterns!!  I also love the cacophony of colors, nothing matching, just good scrappy fun.
 Hand stitches...Not marked, just going for it. Not perfect, but perfectly fun!
Thank you, Kathy for being the hostess with the mostest on this Slow Stitchin' Sunday!  I am linking to Kathy's blog here.



Have a great day, everyone!!


Julie

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Called off work today...

 Well, I am up to three rows out of the eight rows done...and all the sashing is done!  So now it is just fun and easy string piecing.  I like the underlying zig-zag pattern, like the flying geese are floating on the top of the quilt.
Another view.

I went to the library today, and got some quilting books...love them!  Our library has very few quilting books, so I go to a neighboring town, and that library is wonderful!  Two whole shelves of quilting books and videos!!





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

I was put on call at work again today.  That means I lose a day of work.  I hate it!  Using PTO to get paid, which means my vacation time is being spent this way instead of on vacation. You really cannot go too far from the house, because they might call you in at any time.  All for $2.00 dollars an hour.  I had to call and get permission to go the library.  I really miss the old days of no floating, and knowing that you would work every day you were assigned.  Aggravating!!  Wondering what to do about this situation....



Julie

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Strings and scraps!

 Working a lot again, so not much progress on the quilting front.  Above is my latest string thing quilt.  I have had to construct a lot more flying geese to put this one together, but at last have them all done, so the rest of the quilt should go faster.
 My cornerstones are four patches, trimmed to a circle, and appliqued on.  I had a whole bunch of these ready to go, but I guess they are lost forever, so I had to make a second batch.   Now you just know I will find the first batch this afternoon!!

 Another view.  This quilt will be six blocks wide and eight blocks long.  6x8 inch blocks.
 Of course some of the little pieces found their way into a secondary project.
 This heart was in a box of scraps I am using up, so I made another little cup mat from it, and hand quilted it.
And last but not least, a pie...yum!!  It is all gone....




*****************Nurse's Notes****************Warning!!  Sad and glad stuff both ahead!!!!!  Not about quilting!!**********************************

In our hospital, we had two prominent people fall ill a day apart from each other.  From the same department in the same university.  What a horrible loss for that department, and for our community! I was one of the nurses taking care of these people.  What an amazing thing to see provosts, university presidents, PH D's by the dozens and students by the hundreds all coming to the hospital to honor these people.  I think maybe a university is its own little city, kind of like a hospital, with a unique family-like hierarchy.  Such love rolled out of these learned people; it was amazing and wonderful and affirming to see.  In the face of such loss, there is so much good too...I love to find it!!  to witness it...

The news has so much negative stuff in it, but there is so much good too in this world amongst the loss...

*********************************************************


Julie

Sewing right along!

Hello!!  I made a few zipper bags for the guild sales table, to raise money for the guild scholarships.  I bought zippers on Amazon for penn...