Wednesday, April 30, 2014

A Late Christmas

I am having a hard time staying awake today.  I did get the necessary done: shopping, meals etc. but I could have easily just gone back to bed.  My magazine article was also due so I finished that up and submitted it along with a photo. Now that I am caught up, I can get back at the finishing things for the craft sale and the wedding quilt commission.
Have you been taking any precautions against the latest internet threat?  This one, in case you have lost track, is infecting Internet Explorer.  I get so tired of these things.  It is often difficult to know what to do to protect yourself.  We are not doing any on line banking until it gets straightened out.
I bought a couple of pairs of shoes today.  One were sandals to replace the pair I have been wearing for the past five plus years.  I don't like the ones with the piece that goes between your toes so it is harder to find something I like.  I bought the Birkenstock styled ones which is what I had previously.
I also need a pair of moccasins to wear when shopping as they are easy to walk in and comfortable.
I have started doing the twice yearly clothing switch-winter to summer and vice versa. While removing winter clothing from the blanket chest to make room for quilts, I came upon something I had forgotten.  At Christmas, I had bought my husband a couple of stocking stuffer items and, when it came time to wrap them, I couldn't remember where they were.  I don't remember the reasoning behind the blanket box but my husband was pleased with his belated gifts.  A list would probably be a good idea if I remembered where it was.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Quilt Retreat 2014

I arrived home from the retreat early afternoon on Sunday.  I was tired and it took me until today to fully recover, but it was a wonderful three days.  Below are some of the photos of the event.  the quilters are showing some of the items brought for show and tell.  I also had one and will post tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Virtual Quilt Show

Happy Birthday, William Shakespeare.  Another April baby.

The pile beside the door is getting bigger.  In addition to the quilting supplies including 2 sewing machines (taking one for a friend who is coming to the retreat by plane from another province), there is the batting for two customers, a quilt for show and tell and  items to be swapped.  My suitcase is all but packed.  Have to add make up, toothbrush etc.
After not thinking about the retreat until this week, I am now anxious to go.  If I didn't have a doctor's appointment, I might have left today and stopped overnight to visit my nephew and family.
The car is also ready for the trip.  Snow tires have been removed and summers installed and I have a full tank of gas.  I am really glad we filled up on the weekend because I hear on the news that the prices have jumped around 10 cents a litre.  I was wondering this morning what we would have thought back in the mid 1900's if someone  had told us that we would be paying more than $6.00 for a gallon of fuel.  I am dating myself but I remember when it was less than fifty cents a gallon! We probably would have thought that it couldn't happen because no-one would stand for it.  However, just like the proverbial frog in the pot of water, we didn't notice the heat increasing because it happened bit by bit.  Actually, we noticed but didn't do anything about it.
My husband started boiling the maple sap today.  Normally, he would have been done the end of last month so  I felt safe in booking this retreat.  I do like to be here to take him tea and little goodies as well as meals.  He can manage on his own but I like to do my bit as a contribution to those lovely bottles of maple syrup.
Almost forgot to mention that one of my quilts is featured on the home page slide show of Quilts for Sale (  It is my doggie one.  If you would like a virtual quilt show, this is the place to go.
Watch for retreat photos for the next few days.  Talk to you next week.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

A Modern Show and Tell

I am starting to get ready for the quilt retreat in serious now.  I have most of my packing done including all the quilting supplies, the various things for my aches and pains (I will soon have more of them than anything else!) and the fabric I need for the demo I am doing.  Haven't decided if I am going to take a show and tell item yet but I do have a nice red and black quilt that I like and I can use it on my motel bed if it is cool.
I am taking a foundation pieced project as well as some angel minis that are machine appliqued.  I will also tuck in the hand applique block I am working on in case  I feel like doing something while watching TV in my room.  I think that is enough to keep me busy as, of course, there will be shopping, visiting, talking and laughing.
Tomorrow will be my last blog for this week although I may post some photos.

Earlier today, I participated in a very modern show and tell.  I was talking to my sister in England via Skype and she was showing me the heirloom quilt blocks she was making.  As we were on video, she was able to hold each piece up to the camera and point out what was involved.  I had to smile.  Two sisters in two different countries, approx. 5,000 miles apart, sharing our love of quilting.  What an amazing world we live in!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Betwixt and Between.

 Here are some more photos for you from the Orillia quilt show courtesy of my friend, Terry.  Doesn't the farm scene look realistic?  My husband painted a similar picture and I had to look to see if it wasn't that.
We went to a Good Friday service at a local church this morning.  Most of the churches in the area take turns hosting Good Friday and Christmas Eve services and it is a nice time to get together with other Christians.
It is rather an odd day that feels rather like Sunday but it isn't.  I think I will take Heidi for a walk after I finish this as the sun is shining and my husband is outside gathering the sap.
Enjoy the photos and your day.

Thursday, April 17, 2014


I had a busy meeting day today.  A friend took me out to lunch and then I gave her a lesson on the operation of her tablet.  From there to a civic meeting which took care of the rest of the afternoon.  Did some shopping before and after.  In between all that, I sold one of our turkeys (frozen) to a friend. 
When I got home, I unloaded and then went to give the turkey money to my husband.  Unfortunately, it was missing.  Somewhere between my friends house and getting into the car after the last of the shopping, I lost it.  I thought it was in my wallet but, obviously, it wasn't.  I've made a few calls so am hoping it turns up but I am afraid it is gone.
My dear husband hasn't said anything.  I do tend to be somewhat careless with money; shoving it in a pocket or leaving it on a table.  He said that he has just accepted it.  I don't suppose I am going to change but I am going to have to try.
My new business cards came in the mail today.  I get them from Vista who do an excellent job at a very reasonable price.
Didn't get much quilty stuff done today.  I am going to a Good Friday service tomorrow morning and then will probably do either another garden angel or the foundation block.
A week from today I will be on my quilt retreat.  Yahoo.
Have a blessed Easter.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Gardening Angels

I got my blue and white quilt off the frame yesterday.  I still have to quilt the borders and add the binding.  I am going to do heart shapes on the borders and will use my table machine for that.  It has turned out well and I believe the recipient will be pleased.
I was able to get the last row and a half done without the thread breaking or running out of bobbin thread.  Quilting sure can be frustrating sometimes.
I had so much fun with the mini angel quilts I made that I am doing some more for a craft sale next month.  The angels will be different in these.  They will be flying and in profile.  The dress will be made from fabric that has small flowers and the wings will be green.  They will hold a watering can as they fly over the ground.  I think I am going to stitch the words "Gardens are a Blessing" on the background.  I will show you a photo when I get them done.
I have also started a foundation pieced block.  This is a sample to work out the colours.  I have been wanting to do a New York Beauty for some time and I thought this would be a good project to take to the retreat next week.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Sunshine Quilt Show 2014

I have some eye candy for you today.  I went with two friends from our local group to the Sunshine Quilt Show in Orillia on Saturday.  The weather was lovely and the show, as always,  was well attended.  This isn't a huge show in comparison to some but it is well organized and the quilts are as good as you will see anywhere.  There were a lot of appliques as you can see in the photos, quite a number of quilts done in the current style of omitting borders and some really fun wall hangings. 
We stopped for a cup of tea and early lunch before looking at the exhibits and shared a table with some lovely ladies.  Christine was kind enough to let me know she reads my blog so it was great meeting her. She was there with Linda, Laura  and Andrea.  Hope I've spelt your names correctly ladies.
My friend who lives in southern Ontario also joined us and, as we were looking at the quilts, I gave her a mini lesson on some of the styles and fabrics.  She wants to learn to quilt and, if she takes to it as quickly as she did my little lesson, she is going to be one fantastic quilter.  She also has a great sense of style so I can't wait to see what she produces.
All in all, a fun day.  I was tired when I got home as were the other two women but we enjoyed ourselves.  It was a good start to the show season.  Today, it is snowing again so I think I will just ignore the outdoors and think of quilt shows to come.
Thank you to Terry for the first six photos. If you click on the first photo, it will enlarge and you will get thumbnails at the bottom so you can watch it as a slideshow.



Friday, April 11, 2014

Blue and White Quilt

Bessie's Quilt
The quilting is going much better now.  A lot of the problem was that the width wasn't giving me much room to maneuver so I'm leaving all the borders until after the top is finished.  I am thinking that I will just do heart shapes on them.

I am hoping to get a good bit done today.  The thread keeps shredding but this is the one I want to use so will just deal with it.  It is YLI so I am surprised I am having problems.  It isn't the tension or the needle.  Maybe the thread is old.  It was given to me.

My husband is out gathering maple sap today.  I am not sure if he is able to get into the bush off the trails or not.  The rain yesterday and warmer temperatures should have reduced the snow quite a bit.

Such a shock yesterday with the news of Jim Flaherty's sudden death.  The grieving family of public figures have to deal with sharing their loved one with the populace and it can't be easy.  I hope the support and accolades help.

Looking forward to the quilt show tomorrow.  I will be taking lots of photos for sharing.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Pain in the Back

Ow!  I have a nasty pain between my shoulder blades.  I have been trying to quilt my blue and white top and having nothing but problems.  I just don't seem to be able to get the laser set on the pattern so I don't run out of pattern before I reach the end of the quilt or overlap the previous row.  I have been working at it for a couple of hours and decided the best thing to do right now is stop.  I called my hairdresser and am going in for a cut and perhaps after that, I will be ready to have another go.
The wind is picking up and we are supposed to be getting rain.  I hope that it lasts all night and takes the snow with it when it quits.  I am longing to see some of the spring flowers or any kind of colour.
There were three robins in the back yard this morning.  They looked nice and fat but I don't know where they are finding food.  I think they eat seeds when nothing else is available.
I am looking forward to the first quilt show of the season in our area.  Two friends and I are going to Orillia on Sat. for the Sunshine Quilt Show.  The Bracebridge one is in June so that will be next on the agenda.
As I am writing this, I am thinking about a freehand pattern.  I may give up on the one I was doing and design my own.  Stay tuned.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Hanging a Quilt: Part 2

Internet is working fine today so was able to upload the photos (and do everything else I wanted).  The first photo is of the completed quilt on the hanger.  The second picture shows the hanger itself in more detail.  If you need more clarification on how I did this, please contact me.
I am getting my blue and white quilt ready for the frame now.  I have decided to do an all over feather pattern as most people really like it.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Hanging a Quilt.

We did another change around in the quilt room.  We hung a rod at one end of the room so I could use it for taking photos of my quilts but then needed to move a few things so I would have as much width as possible.  The long arm frame was moved forward to accommodate a bookcase and the wall heater has been moved to the sitting /sun room.  I like this arrangement much better. 
I also really like the photography arrangement.  This is what I did.  I got two rod supports and hung them as close to the ceiling as possible leaving just enough room to be able to hang and remove the rod.  Because of the distance, I also place another support in the middle.  The rod I am using is an unneeded one from my long arm but any sturdy one would do.  When I want to take a picture of a quilt, I pin a sleeve to the quilt back close to the binding for security, slide the rod through and put it on the supports.  The quilt hangs perfectly.  I made the sleeve from a very dark brown fabric and it is barely visible in the photo.
I am having trouble uploading a photo for some reason but, when I can, I will.

Friday, April 4, 2014

That Sinking Feeling

It is amazing how exhausting sewing can be.  I have been in the studio all day and am about half way through doing the borders.  On a positive side, I like the way it is turning out.
Sometimes when someone hires you to make a quilt for them, the colours and/or pattern are not something you would choose yourself.  I had this happen once and it really was work making the quilt.  The important thing was that the customer was pleased but, although I did my best for them, I still disliked the quilt.

My new internet service is working fine but slow. I am going to move up to the next level to get more space and so it will be much faster.  One of the most important things I was looking for was dependability and I seem to have got that.  With my former server, I was constantly having to move the router around to pick up the signal.  Often, it just didn't work.  When you are trying to run a business, that kind of service is the pits.

It has been raining here all day which is depleting the snow.  It is rather like Christmas gift opening time watching various things start to appear above the snow line.  Our little dog, who likes to find the high ground, is having a problem.  Small as she is, she keeps sinking.  I was waiting for her to make her way to the door yesterday and it was like watching someone who has had way to much alcohol to drink.  One leg would sink and she would lurch in that direction, gain her balance, walk a few steps and lurch in a different direction.  Once, both front feet sank and she went down to her jaw.  I am just waiting for all four feet to sink leaving her waiting for me to pull her out by her chain!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

New Server

My new internet server has been installed and, so far, it isn't any faster.  I will take the same speed but better reliability so will give it the weekend and see how it goes.  My previous server was dreadful on the weekends and during the summer which is the major reason for changing.  I have a 30 day money back so will have lots of time to check it out.

I woke up far too early this morning so am pretty tired.  Nevertheless, I am getting things done.  I am determined to have the top for the blue and white quilt ready for the frame by Sat.  That shouldn't be a problem as I have already sewn more than half the rows together.

Such a lovely day.  I should be outside but here I am tied to the sewing machine and computer.  My dear man is getting supper tonight so perhaps after he gets home from doing some running around I will take the dog out for a wander.

I will have a treat for you in a few days.  The founder of Quilts for Sale web site, co founder of the Quilt pattern Magazine and a host of other accomplishments is going to be a guest blogger.  I know you will want to see what she has to share.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

An Unlevel Level

I have been working all day on my blue and white quilt commission.  I have the top; other than borders, almost done.  I noticed one of the blocks was in the wrong way.  Glad I saw that before I had everything put together.  Now I need to go over each one to make sure there isn't another problem.

Dear husband put my new heater up on the wall today.  I mentioned that I was a bit cool and he was out here in a flash.  He has been wanting to get it installed but I was to busy to think about it.  The flames are pretty to look at and leaving it on for half an hour warmed the room sufficiently.

The manufacturer provided a tiny leveler to make sure everything was straight.  I thought that was a nice touch until I checked it on my table and found that it wasn't accurate.  A check with my two foot level confirmed my opinion.

We have to adjust it but it can wait as the heater will probably be taken down and stored for the summer.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Signs of Spring?

This happy lady is my friend, Jenny, who just completed her first quilt on my frame.  She did an excellent job and her 'monkey quilt' will, I know, be a favourite with the recipients.

I had my second acupuncture treatment today.  I do believe they are helping.  I have one more session scheduled and then they will be twice a month to see how I am doing.

I smiled when I read an on line newsletter today.  The writer asked for photos that showed signs of spring.  I am not sure if being able to see the bottom step leading from our back door would be acceptable.  When you live in a bush, you can see unmistakable signs of a changing season but how do you take a photo of the change in the colour of a trees bark, or twigs that had been buried under four feet of snow making an appearance.  I could take one of the road that goes past our property.  It is a mess of muddy ruts and very difficult to drive on.  That is another sign of spring as is the bare pavement on another road where there had been a few inches of snow and ice.
The most welcome sign of spring, however,  is the quilt shows that are happening.  I am going to one next weekend.