Saturday, June 14, 2014

Yellow RSC Sampler Blocks

On this dark rainy day it made sense that sewing for RSC14 was what caught my eye while reading my blog roll this morning. So after some housekeeping this morning and attending my last graduation party of the season this afternoon I made some time to pull out my yellow scraps and sew.

Here are the 3 blocks I've completed so far:
I think my favorite one is the Wacky Pinwheel on the left because of the fun polka dot fabric. I've made 2 quilts in the last year using the Bright Hopes block on the top right so that was a quick one using my 2.5" remnant strip bin. The other block is called Framed Four Patch.

We have a thunderstorm moving in so my pictures are rather dark. I've also pulled out my charm bin to select some yellow charms to make my chevron stripe in bright yellow.
I have to go all the way back to January to show you my blue chevron stripe. I'm planning a ROYGBIV quilt using these for Project Linus.
Making these blocks is so much fun... hopefully I can play catch up the rest of the year!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Stash Additions & Quilty Stitches

I actually can't remember the last time I added fabric to an online shopping cart before last week - talk about CRAZY! I was browsing my over stuffed blog feed and just had to have this collection of Paris FQs from The Intrepid Thread. I have been lucky enough to visit Paris twice and I have a small "starter set" of Paris prints in my stash closet
I was especially drawn to the low volume prints in the mix... now I'm going to have to decide what to make with them. The bottom fabrics were from the clearance section - I'll use the Sunnyside & Simply Style prints for binding as I have some charm packs from these lines. The 3rd fabric is a panel from Winter's Lane.

I won some Winter's Lane charm packs from a give-away last December so I thought the panels would be fun to work into either a wall hanging or some seasonal pillows. I love the pops of red against the muted colors in this line.
Block 11 for Little Miss Shabby's Quilty Stitches came out yesterday and I couldn't wait to get started on the Japanese x + y block. When I posted this pic on Instagram last night I was called an over achiever! It was the perfect way to spend a coolish afternoon and finish up my latest audio book. You can find the patterns for all of the blocks HERE. They are so much fun to stitch up.

I'm a novice on Instagram but I do love following along with the other stitchers - I'm deb_asimplelifequilts over there. Baby steps!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Really Random Thursday

I haven't done a random post in forever so here goes...

Remember the awesome Sochi flags & clothing? The latest Keepsake Quilting catalog has a wonderful rendition. Swoon.
This email caught my attention yesterday.
That IS a WHOA! in my book. I guess you could say I've been walking my way to my dream girl since March 1...
I've had this catalog cover saved for a few years now. Love the outfit and of course her super fit body - and I can sub in my paddle board and all is good. Not that my tummy will ever see the light of day again but that's what dreams are all about right?

This is Elsa's least comfortable looking napping pic ever. Makes my neck hurt.
Yesterday I did something that I've been thinking over for almost a year. I ventured into the world of tattoos!

Tattooed eyeliner to be specific in case you can't tell from my 1st selfie. I was a mix of excited and nervous when I arrived but the woman who did it set me at ease right away with her 7 years of credentials and her upbeat personality. We had a wonderful conversation while she did her thing. To sum it up it was much more enjoyable than going to the dentist (I have a major dental phobia) and I rated my discomfort on a scale of 1 to 10 as a 3. My left eyelid had one sensitive spot but the right eye was a breeze.

It is super dark right now but will lighten up as the skin heals and the pigment is fully absorbed. I chose a thin line of black along the lash line followed by cocoa brown for a soft edge. This morning my eyelids are a little puffy but that should only last a few days. I think I am going to love it!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

May Reads

May was a great reading month for me... I think I used reading as a de-stresser between grad party preparations and I also listened to several books during my hourly walks. As you can see I'm still ahead of my goal for my 2014 Goodreads Reading Challenge.
I'm starting to see a little more space on my bookshelves as well. I was able to visit IKEA during our Easter family reunion and settled on the white boxes to use for storing miscellaneous items - right now they hold papers to be sorted and filed and later I will be using them for project supplies.
The white IKEA magazine holders are lined up on my desk ready for action too. This used to be my sewing corner when I started my blog in September 2012. Now it is my hub for decluttering/sorting and later I will use it for paper and beading projects. I've decided that our guestrooms should have a purpose besides waiting for guests!
I've been on a Vince Flynn kick and have finished the 5th book in the 14 book Mitch Rapp series. Series books are a real treat in audio format - you already know the main characters so they are easy to get into. I found that our library has many of Flynn's books on CD and figured out that I can copy them to my iTunes library and then sync them onto my iPhone just like a music CD. When I'm done I just delete them and make room for the next book. Using Interlibrary Loan I have access to hundreds of books on CD so I am psyched over this.
A good friend sent me her Vince Flynn collection after visiting me in 2009 while I was living on our family room futon after breaking my leg. Unfortunately I was unable to concentrate enough to do much reading then so it's about time I visit her and return these.

I have a 5 star read to recommend - Benediction by Kent Haruf. Oh how I loved this book! I've read Haruf's Plainsong and am currently reading it's sequel Eventide which are both 4 stars for me, but Benediction pushed all of my buttons and made me cry. Haruf creates wonderful real life characters set in a small Colorado town and his writing style is very simple but so effective. I would describe his books as quiet stories about small town life. If you've never read him you are missing out.

My 4 star reads in May:
  • Kill Shot by Vince Flynn
  • This Dark Road to Mercy by Wiley Cash
  • Cockroaches by Jo Nesbo
  • The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein (TBR shelf)
  • Field of Prey by John Sandford
Field of Prey is Sandford's newest Lucas Davenport book and it is one of my favorites with a compelling outstate Minnesota serial murder case, an interesting new local investigator and all the familiar characters I've grown to love. I started it on audio but had to finish it one late night via ebook. I am so spoiled by being a fast reader!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Month in Review

Hello June! Since May was pretty much a total wash in all things quilt related it will be a quick month to review. <<crickets>>

Fortunately there is more to life than quilting! I showed you these jars back in March when I went back on Weight Watchers online and bought myself a FitBit as an early birthday present.
Each Sunday morning I weigh in 1st thing hoping to be able to transfer some gems from the Pounds to Lose bowl to the Pounds Lost bowl. I'm happy to say that the Pounds to Lose bowl is done to 8 gems and I've decluttered 22 lbs since March 1! These bowls sit in my kitchen window as a constant reminder to make good choices while I'm in this room.

I've been doing lots of walking and am going to be adding in some other types of exercise into the mix in June. Of course I'm busy planting annuals and cleaning out my perennial gardens too. Oh, and I still have a few areas on my list to purge/declutter and organize. But I'm really wanting to get back into my quilting room in June!

Instead of going ga-ga on goals I'm going to keep it simple. One NewFO and one UFO are going on my list along with June's yellow RSC14 blocks and the Quilty Stitches cross stitch blocks. If I do more that would be great - but most importantly I just want to reintroduce sewing into my weekly routine.

For my NewFO I'm going to jump start my Threadbias PillowPop Sew Along participation by making the easy pillow for June called Photogenic. I've got some great large prints to choose from to make a pillow for our screen porch loveseat.
This will also be my Let's Book It Challenge project this month over at Vroomans Quilts. This is such a great book and I hope to catch up on the cute pillows I've missed later in the year.
And my UFO project for A Lovely Year of Finishes will be to finish Warm 16 Patches.
I will be in Vegas for the last week in June so I think I'd better get off to a fast start. August will be very busy as we help both of our kids move east... daughter to Columbus, OH and son to Rochester, NY. So hopefully I can find my footing in June, get some quilting projects done in July and then be ready to fill my empty nest in the fall with LOTS of sewing!