Sunday, February 21, 2021

Scraps are simply the best!

Good morning!!!  The birds are singing, here, and I am playing with scraps.  These are made from 1 1/2 inch wide strips.  So the finished block is two inches.  Pretty tiny, and pretty fun to make!  Five seams make the block.  The little connector pieces of the block are 1 inch to start.  So if you have a 6 inch strip by 1 1/2 inches...you have cut the colored pieces out with an inch to spare.  
I pull this bin out and make some occasionally.  There are a LOT in there!  Someday, I will have enough to make a quilt.  

 I am working on my plaid string quilt, too.  I make a strata, like this, and then sub-cut and trim to make my blocks. I am going scrappy and using up every single string, wide or narrow, so anything goes!




Hope you are having a really good day today!



Julie

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Log Cabin Lunatics!!! Ready to finish it up???

My last round was 8 1/2 inch x 1 1/2 inch strips of pale strips, and then the same size colored strips with the red 1 1/2 inch squares attached.  

 I am sewing all my blocks together today!!  Hurrah!!  


Coincidentally, I (Julie) Julierose, and Quiltdiva Julie are all making this quilt!!!  Three Julies!  Are you also sewing along?  


Please see Quilt diva Julie HERE:  Me and My Quilts - Exploring the Possibilities: Project Updates (quiltdivajulie.blogspot.com)


Please see Julierose HERE:  julierosequilts: A FUNKIFIED FLIMSY--FINALLY



 Please see Cathy's quilt, HERE:  https://saneandcrazy.blogspot.com/2021/02/log-cabin-lunacy.html


Please see Caryl's quilt here!!!!  cinnamon holiday workshop: To-Do Tuesday #51 and Log Cabin Loonies (carylquilts.blogspot.com)




Have a lovely day, each of you...it is certainly wonderful here, with heat and water and everything!  WOW!!!  I am so filled with gratitude, after a few days of cold and dark!!



Julie




Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Hand quilting by candle and flashlight illumination! Hat update too!

Good morning, everyone!!  I am grateful for heat!! We are having rolling blackouts, here in Texas, which means we have 20 hours of dark and cold, and 4 hours of heat, if history serves me (this has happened twice now).   Many of my friends have had no heat since Sunday night.  Whoop whoop for the heat!!!  I wanted to stay productive in the darkness, so I layered this little quilt up, and have been hand quilting it, stitch in the ditch.  I have made very good progress, using my bright candle and a little flashlight.  My stitches are pretty good, surprisingly!
Here is the fabric I used on the back, and my label in place.  The binding is on, too and is waiting for hand stitching.   Great fun!!!

 ********************THE HAT PROJECT!!!!!!!!!********************


I continue to make nursing hats, and this is one of the latest ones.  I wanted to give you all an update!


TADA!!!!!!!!!!!!  Together, we have made 413 nursing hats!!  


I just want to thank you, each of you,  from our hearts to yours, for all of your efforts and love.  Some made hats, some made bags, some made masks for all of us in healthcare.  You are appreciated and loved!!!!!!!  I see your hats every single day, running around on someone's head, and your bags are used every single day.  THANK YOU!!!!! for your generosity of heart!




Have a lovely day: I am off to do all I can while the power is on.  I just pray for the 3 million people in the cold and dark, that their power is restored quickly!!




Julie



Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Cold!

 Hi everyone, May I ask for prayers for some warmth?  It is very cold in my house.  No electricity means no heat. It is 5 degrees outside.   I am burning old branches in the fireplace and hand quilting by firelight!!!!  May all effected by the power outage be warm soon!

Thursday, February 11, 2021

And the forgotten quilt is a top!


And this little forlorn, forgotten quilt is now sewn together, into a quilt top!!  The pink is to add a pop of, well, pink!  LOL!
This quilt will never, ever lie flat.  My sashing, which I just made, is flat, but those blocks I made in the distant past?  Are all different sizes.  No consistent seam allowance, at all.  Does that put me off?  Not in the least, LOL!  I just love it!!  Lots of joy, here.  I am grateful I found it, and I am grateful that my skills are better now than then...grateful for a quarter inch sewing foot on my machine!  Grateful that I have improved on my quilting skills, at least a little bit.  Grateful for those tiny little bits of colorful fabric!!
I am so close on the mystery quilt, too.  This is the third sashing I have made...and this is it, I am telling you, for I am not making another set of sashings!  
All these mystery quilts look so different, depending on fabric placement.  I love them all!!
My favorite block, sewn into the Mrs. Lincoln's sampler quilt.

 Here is some primitive applique, all prepped to sew.  


So that is it for now, all!!!



I wish each of you a lovely day, full of productivity or rest, work or play...just hope it is good for you! Sometimes I think we just have to make up our minds that it is good, no matter what!



Julie

Sunday, February 7, 2021

Sunday, and I am off work!


 I have made some string progress.  I decided to empty my plaid basket, and use every string I would find, making a string quilt.  I love playing with the little pieces, so, so much!  Lots of ideas are running around in my little brain...makes me dizzy.  Haha!  Stay tuned, is all I can say.  I have three quilts in the works right now, working steadily along on them; this one, Bonnie's mystery, and the Forgotten quilt!



*************************1930's*****************************


I have been greatly enjoying my study and reading, in the evenings, about the history of the 1930's.  This was more than an American phenomenon, but encompassed (to some degree), the entire world.  

My impressions:  


In the 1920's, greed was king.  There was so much easy money and personal debt out there, and little worry about it...until!  The stock market fell, losing 30 billion of wealth in 4 days.  In addition to poor governmental policy, and massive debt, there was an awful drought, that truly wiped out so many farmers.  I mean to the point the farmers just packed up their pickup trucks and left farms, that had been in the family for generations. It seems to be the perfect storm for a massive economic depression. 

Apples were sold by former executives and workers on the street corners for 5 cents, and no one could buy them...no one had 5 cents to spend.  

Farm land was rented for 8 dollars an acre, for an entire year.  Can you even imagine those prices?  Working men were willing and looking for work, for fifty cents per day.  


As Wall street fell, the banks fell, and then the businesses, and then people...and so went the entire country.  Many folks in the country had an easier time than city people; at least in the country, food could be grown.  Not so in the cities...soup kitchens sprang up, from religious institutions, and also the Red Cross.  


Many people thought that they were self made men, and would not accept any governmental help...not that there was a lot to be had, at first.  It was really hard-scrabble times. Piggy banks were taken from children and the coins used to buy food.  Many men blamed themselves, full of shame, for they could not provide for their families.   Charity meant failure to many.  As unemployment grew,  there was less consumer demand and purchasing of consumer goods, and so the economy spun down.  


An angry mob stormed the US Capitol, demanding their military pensions from WW1 be given to them early.  (The Bonus Expeditionary Force).  I found it interesting that the capitol was stormed quite recently, as well.  

For lack of buyers, entire crops were plowed under.  Cattle were killed, too, as people went hungry.  A mass migration started...the dust bowl days were upon the Midwest and west, and people started migrating to California and other places.  On foot, or with cars that were salvaged, loaded down with household goods.  By railcar, too; the hobo transport.  These hobos were former workers, farmers, family men, fallen on hard times.  They were looking for a way to work, a way to make the next meal.  They would beg at houses for food, until the housewives would put out signs, "no food here, even for ourselves...please do not knock."  


The Red Cross came to the forefront, helping feed people, and help with rudimentary health care. 


Franklin D. Roosevelt came to the presidency...and with him, brought reforms, meant to help.  He had fireside chats (Is there anyone who reads this blog that listened to one, in real time???)  The USA formed work groups, with many civic projects, such as parks, roadside stops, road and bridge projects...anything to provide a working man a wage.  


Part of the reforms, of which there were many, included:


Farmer's Aide

The establishment of a minimum wage

Wall Street was regulated

Booze was legalized (ending prohibition)

Bank deposits were insured by the US government

Many jobless people were employed, as above, with public works.

The citizenry gradually redeposited their hoarded cash, solidifying the banks again.  


The economy did not really recover until the advent of World War 2. Of interest, a young German named Adolf Hitler came on the scene in 1934.  



All this history brings me to what I really want to dig into:  The food, clothing, making do, savings habits, quilts, of course, and work habits of those people that went through the Great depression, and the sequelae for future generations from their experiences.  


So more on that next time!!!!!!!!  Thanks for indulging me in my exploration of this portion of history.  


*******************************Healthy habits****************************


So far we have been:


1.  strengthening those abs, to support our backs!

2.  Drinking our water.

3.  Taking our vitamins

4.  Adding a walk to our days

5. Some simple exercises, every day!


How about adding some good eating habits?  Now this is really the elephant in the room for a lot of us, right?  It is so easy to grab something quick, snacky, with lots of fat and sugar and salt, and not much nutrition.  I challenge each of you, (and mostly myself!) to take a few moments to make a meal to take to work, out of healthy stuff...not such junk as a lot of us get going on!!  Plan your meals...make them in advance...clean some carrots and cauliflower and celery and put them in baggies, ready to pop in your bag, so when that 3 PM "I gotta have a candy bar" craving hits...at least you have something to put in your mouth!!



Have a great day, everyone!


Julie


Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Now I remember why!!!

I bordered all of the blocks for the  "Quilt I didn't remember" today.  So all the blocks are now done! I remember now, why I didn't finish it...I had no more 2 inch squares, in that box that I was using! Who knows what I was thinking...and why did I not go find more squares??  Also, some of the piecing had 1/4 inch seam allowance...and some did not, LOLOL!!!  So that is why it got rolled up in the length of white material and stashed away!  So I corrected the worst blocks, added borders on all of the blocks, and now am working on the sashing pieces.  PROGRESS!!!!
Here is the block.  All two inch squares.

 I am making progress on my string quilt, too!!  That one is super fun, and super fast.  PLAIDS!  in strings! What could possibly be better?


Hope you are having a lovely day!



Julie

Monday, February 1, 2021

I have no memory of this quilt!

Hmmm.  I was going through the quilt closet to clean, and I found this, rolled up in a yard of white fabric.  I have no memory of making it, but there it is, so I must have.  I recognize all those old fabric pieces from the 80's and 90's and 50's (mom's).  It is definitely pre-blog.  

 I stalled on it for some reason...wonder why?? Probably a squirrel!!!


Julie

End of month update!


I am all ready to applique down these pieces, for the Mrs. Lincoln's Sampler quilt.  Cathy and I are making two blocks a month for this quilt.  It is well on the way to being finished!!!

So here are my blocks for this month.  These blocks are great fun to make!!!



Ok, this is for all of us Log Cabin Lunatics out there...  This is where I am on my log cabin lunacy blocks.  So add a 6 1/2 x 1 1/2 light strip to your blocks, as shown, then the red 1 1/2 inch squares to your 6 1/2 x 1 1/2 dark strips, then sew together as above.  So you can leave your blocks at this size, as they are 8 inches finished.  I added another round to my blocks, so they will be 10 inch, finished size. My aim here is to make a quilt big enough to cover someone, in a hospital bed or a cuddle quilt for chemo or wheelchair. I feel like this is a big win/win...a fun quilt, and some of my 1/2 inch strips used up!  And it is mindless, sewing fun.  Hurrah!!! 





Above is my mini of the month.  It can stand alone as a little quilt, but I am thinking I would like to make a block for each month, with piecing and applique.  Please see Wendy, here...our fearless mini quilt leader!!  It is so much fun to see everyone's mini quilt creations...lovely quilts, all!




Strings!! Strings are just so, so much fun to me!!!  Above is a table runner I made a long time ago.  I don't know when, because there is no date on the back!  You can see that one end had been exposed to the sun.  It was on my old sewing machine, which gets some sun in the afternoon, fading the border fabric.  It is hand quilted through every string, and it a favorite of mine. 





So my friend Annie and I are making string quilts!!  I though I would make a bed sized quilt, from the above table runner idea.  So I am off to the races!!! When we are finished, I hope to show both of our quilts to you! 





I have made a fair few strings quilts over the years...above is one.  It is well used and washed a lot.  In fact, Rosie the poodle has a little accident on this quilt last night, and I just washed it.  It has held up well.  The quilt was made in the "quilt as you go" method.  Rosie would be so embarrassed that I told on her...please do not mention it to her, LOL!




 Here is the back.  I just used what I had, so obviously I ran out of the funky floral fabric...(FFF)  Haha!!!




Hope each of you is having a wonderful day, and off I go on my day!




Julie

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Mysterious update!

Bonnie Hunter's Quiltville mystery quilt is something lots of us look forward to each year!!  Here is my block progress so far...the fun thing about this is that I have all of my block parts all ready to go. Just need seven more blocks!
I really like this block...note that Texas fabric.  I only had a scrap...about 1/2 of an inch left of it, which was used in a squishy hotpad. 
Maybe we need a little Valentine's décor!!  I polished the dining room table and filled the little basket with some pillows that were made with love!
Ok.  As many of you know, I am on a mission to declutter my life.   This is my basket for work.  There is a lady I work with, Billie (who has been dreadfully ill but is on the mend), and she has a big thing for office supplies.  Like quilters love fabric, Billie loves office supplies.  Almost every day, she brings a big bag of pens, or pencils,  and gives them out to everyone...5, 6, or even a dozen to each nurse at a time!!!  OH wow...that gets crazy in a hurry.  So here WAS my basket of pens...silliness!! Also bandage scissors, hemostats, alcohol swabs, hand sanitizer, just lot of junk from my pockets.  An over flowing basket, OH my!

 I sorted out about 3/4 of these and took them to the post office! I kept the pens I really use, and the cute ones that have been gifted to me.   The post office never has a pen...this way, they have a stash of pens and pencils for use.  Yahoo!  One more mess tackled...as you see, I still have a TON of writing utensils, but it is a lot better.  Pens are something I use a lot of.  As a nurse, I write a lot, despite having a "paperless" charting system.  And someone always needs a pen to use, to have, patients and visitors and doctors.  So this is much better.


My de-clutter so far this year includes:  


1.  Pantry

2.  Linens

3.  Coats

4.  The pen basket! and other office supplies. 


********************1930's**********************************************

I actually went to the library and checked out some books of the 1930's.  Actually, these were history books of the 20th century, so I will look at another library for great books on just the 1930's.  I don't know why I love history so much, but I do...and this period profoundly shaped my family.  I am reading some incredible things...and will share the best with you!


*******************************Healthy habits!****************************


So far we have been:


1.  strengthening those abs, to support our backs!

2.  Drinking our water.

3.  Taking our vitamins

4.  Adding a walk to our days



So now...lets add a few exercises!  I do this routine...now listen here, don't try to be Hercules and start an exercise routine unless you are OK physically to do it and your doctor approves!! Be careful if you are sedentary...go slow but be relentless in doing something!

I do this each morning...takes me about 10 minutes.


squats (10 x 2 sets), push ups (10 x 2 sets), leg lifts (10 x 2 sets), crunches (10), sit-ups (10) back arches (10), and lying leg lifts with both leg together (10).  


DONE!!!  The key is to do it every single day.  No equipment is required, and you will feel better, I promise!  You can always add more...



Julie





Friday, January 22, 2021

Friday frolics, with the Log Cabin Loonies!!

How are you doing today?  I hope your day is wonderful and fulfilling, whether at work or at play or at home!  Here we go, Loonies, in the best and most respectful way...Hahaha!!!  Quilting should be fun, right???  OK, so we added a round last week, to however many blocks you are making.  So we are adding another round this week!  4 1/2 inch long strips x 1 1/2 inch wide.  Add the light strips first, then then red squares on the colored strips, and then colored strips with red squares, to finish your round!  Should be 6 1/2 inches square now.  Tada!  Fast, done, and on we go!! I am making my  lights very light, for my example block,  so you can see the contrast, but of course you use whatever you have and like!  
I feel like I had a major breakthrough with the mystery quilt from Bonnie Hunter!  Here is the block I am making.  Lots of struggle with colors and what to do...I made a few little changes, but here I am.  
Full steam ahead, now!  Pretty piles of Pieces, don't you think??  
Now I am making tracks, and finishing blocks!!



 

Don't you think the trimmings are pretty?  


*****************Health ideas!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1.  Contract those abs, right in the be, first thing!!
2.  Drink your water, starting first thing!
3.  Take your vitamins!  (with food is better)

How about a walk?  How many of you walk, every day or most days?  It is very easy, requires little equipment, and can be done inside or outside.  Let's add a walk!!  Gradually add to your distance if you have not been doing this...but consistency is the key.  Try to walk every day, even if it is a block!!!


*********************Decluttering*****************************

I am working on clothing this week, my coat closet in particular.  Goodness sakes, I have had coats for years in there that I have not worn.  Time to get the good ones to someone who needs them!!!

This year so far:

1.  Pantry
2.  Linens
3. Coats





Have a great day!


Julie

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Week two of 2021 is behind us!!

Happy weekend!!  I am off work today, working extra tomorrow.  Time to sew and have fun today!  Above is my progress on Bonnie Hunter's mystery quilt.  I love these little blocks so, so much!!
Just playing with pieces here...
And more play!  You can find all the pieces to the mystery right here!


Quiltville's Quips & Snips!!: Grassy Creek Mystery!

***************************Decluttering and cleaning for this year:  Part 2!*************


Last week we worked on our pantries.  Mine feels and looks so much better, and now I have meals planned, using things in the pantry.  Love it!!


So this week, I am working on my linen closet.  Wow...what a mess!!!  



The only way to make things less cluttered is to have less of those things to clutter things up.   I donated a bunch of good towels,  moved others along to the "rag bag", to use for cleaning and out in the garage.   I also donated three new sheet sets...I have plenty, and someone can really use them.  

Now!  That feels better!!!


I found things I had forgotten completely about!!  


The above quilt is a very early one, from my hands.  1990's, sometime.  It has never been on the blog, I don't think...it was made way before the blog.  Of course, hand quilted.  NO label though!  grrrr!!  Lesson learned, of course!!!  Julie, label your quilts!

The binding was done by hand, with a whip stitch.   Hahaha!   I just folded the back to the front, which the backing was obviously as old sheet.   I just love it, anyhow!!!  Glad I have progressed a little bit, in my quilt making.



I also found these hand embroidered pillow cases...done my my mom and grandmother.  I smoothed them out, admired all those tiny stitches, carefully folded them and put them back in the closet.  I just can't part with those, not quite yet.
I found this old comforter!  Wow...must be 30 years old.  It weighs 18 pounds.  Seriously, I weighed it!  Talk about a weighted blanket!! It got donated, too.  


So if I do a bit of decluttering and organizing every week, by the end of the year?  We will make a great deal of good progress!!! Care to join me?


*************************the 1930's, a study***************************

I was recently gifted these pretty, pretty fabrics and this book, which I have been lusting over for years.  Yahoo!!  This reminds me of my reading I have been doing about the 1930's.  


Causes of the Great Depression:  1929-1939.  Did you know it lasted so, so long?  Wow!   There are many reasons why this happened...many theories.  


1.  Easy money.  Remember those roaring Twenties?  They were the result of easy credit, and easy money...lots available.  The government increased the money supply, and this readily available supply also increased prices.  This was compounded by terrible monetary policy throughout. Interest rates were up, and banks were lending...and people and businesses were highly leveraged with lots of loans.  Also, lots of investment in the stock market with this borrowed capital. 

2. The federal reserve cut off the money supply in 1929...resulting in a huge 20% drop in the stock market, over just 4 days.  629 banks closed that year alone (this number varies in my research), but you get the idea...banks can't loan out all that money and not get paid back!! Thousands more failed in 1930, 1931, 1932 and 1933.  

  3.  Hebert Hoover instituted the Smoot-Hawley act, raising tariffs, affecting our trade terribly...he just seemed to institute more and more policies that really made it all so much worse. 

Have you heard of the term "Hooverville?"  Common, every day folks were living in encampments, little tents and structures made of cardboard boxes, etc.  People like us!!!  A terrifying thought.

Taxes and levies were added, burdening an already struggling populace.

4.  FDR:  The New Deal:  Work programs! Remember these, or have you heard of them?  President Roosevelt also really contributed to the terrible lengthening of the depression too.  I am finding horrible fiscal policy and taxes, etc. that really did not help anyone.  Seems like everything that was tried, really failed.


TEN years! A decade of doing without essentials,  struggling and scrambling to make ends meet and feed families.  What an awful time!


I have kind of just skimmed over the reasons why this happened, although I am fascinated and have done hours of reading about it. You can get really into it, as I have!   I thought it was important for me to understand why this happened.  I am very interested in how the common folks handled all of this, and how they coped...and the sequalae of all the fear and deprivation that happened.  

Thanks for reading...more next week!


************************************Health!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


So?  waking up...big smile on your face!  Contracting those abs??  Don't they feel better?  Drinking that first glass of water, so your kidneys are happy???


If you do something for 21 days, they say you have developed a habit...so keep going!


This week, I encourage you to look at what supplements you take, if any.  I take a handful...vitamin c, vitamin d ( I have a known deficiency), multi vitamins.  zinc!  Do some research...they sure make me feel better, and although food sources of vitamins are best, we don't always eat very nutritious food, do we? I am taking them!  

You are so worth a little effort in increase your health. We take care of others all the times, but take a moment and love yourself, too!

1.  Contract those abs, securing and strengthening that core.

2.  Drink your water, first thing and throughout the day

3. Take your vitamins, if appropriate for you.


Hope everyone has a lovely, wonderful day!  I have greatly appreciate hearing what you do for your health...thank you for sharing!!



Julie


 

Log Cabin Lunatics! This is for you!

Good morning!  It is Saturday!  Wow!  Time is just flying, isn't it??  Here is the next step in our log cabin journey, using our strips and have a blast, and using up those little pieces!   So...put a funny movie on, or some fun music, or an interesting audio book!  Here we go!  We have made our centers, (here) and cut a bunch of strips, 1 1/2 inches wide (here) , and also cut a lot of red squares 1 1/2 inches.  Now we are ready to really make some tracks!  From your light strips, sew a 2 1/2 x 1 1/2 inch strip to each side of your center.  Keep in mind placement...light to light.  Then sew your red squares onto your 2 1/2 colored strips, and sew it together.  We have made a round!!!  See the block below...this is what we are aiming for.  If you assembly line piece, it goes very quickly.  Make as many blocks as you want to make...it goes amazing fast and it super fun! Smile...think good thoughts as you sew, and it will infuse your quilt with goodness and fun and when you see your finished project, you will enjoy it all the more!
One finished block.

In the few minutes before work, I pieced these blocks, for the mystery quilt.
And these too!!!  Just super fun, if they are all cut out and waiting by the machine.



Have a lovely day!


Julie (heading up the lunatics...hahaha!)