Monday, December 15, 2014

How Do They Know???

Today I'm just about finished quilting the last gift quilt for Christmas. It's not very big and the machine is stitching perfectly. Yesterday was a whole other story!

How do machines know when you want to get something finished and time is running short? I got the quilt loaded, the machine was oiled, the bobbins were wound, put in a new needle. The first row or two went pretty good but I noticed some little loopies on the back so tightened up the upper tension---a couple of times. That didn't do any good so I switched bobbins. Nope. Re-threaded the machine. Nope. Switched top thread from Perma-Core to Maxi-Lock. Better but now we have skipped stitches. Finally consulted the troubleshooting section of the manual and it suggested a larger size needle. Switched them out and.....wait for it.......SUCCESS!!!  The last two and a half rows of the quilt look really great. :)  Oh,'s going to an 11-yr. old non-quilter so I doubt he'll ever notice that the back isn't quite perfect. No pictures yet, but I'll be sure to get some before the quilts get wrapped.

Are you ready for Christmas?? I'm resigned to the fact that not everything that I would like to get done will get done. But, there will be presents and food and what doesn't get done can wait until later. There's no sense half-killing myself over things nobody else will notice and there's no sense being too exhausted to enjoy the day with the family.

And, I forgot to was a SNOW DAY!!! Nothing better than a snow day. It's kind of a bonus day and I look forward to them like a little kid. Rain, snow, wind, but I didn't have to go out in's all good.

Now, back to that last quilt.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Thanksgiving Prep

Have you done yours?

I'm thankful I don't have to sew on the kitchen table. I don't have a dining room or dining room table so that's not a problem either. :)

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Super Heroes

Our little Halloween Super Heroes.

Bat Girl is moving so fast she's just a blur!!

Cute little capes.
Hope you all had a fun Halloween!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Quilt of Valor Block Drive

Alycia Carmin in Colorado is running a block drive for Quilts of Valor from now till the end of November. Click here for the full scoop --

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

What Quilt Do You Have On Your Bed?

That's the question Jo over at Jo's Country Junction has asked. Bonnie Hunter's "Jamestown Landing" is the quilt on my bed.

It's the only quilt I've finished in the last couple of years that I have kept.  As soon as I saw a picture of it I knew I wanted make it....the process just took a couple of years.

Now it's your turn to show what's on your bed and share it on Jo's blog.

Friday, October 3, 2014

It'll Be Here Soon.....Halloween, That Is

This year I'm ready.....

A Halloween quilt for the back of the couch, made using my Twister ruler.

And a table-topper for my table. I have a weakness for Halloween fabric and had built up quite a collection.  These two projects at least made a dent in it.  I'm thinking it might be fun to make a Spiderweb quilt since about all that's left of some pieces is strips.

Came home from work yesterday with some sort of bug.....upset tummy, fever, aches & pains, totally tired.  Took some ibuprofen when I got home  and soon after that crawled into bed and went to sleep.  If anyone had a "library emergency" last night I hope they dealt with it somehow.  Hubby had orders to tell anyone who called that I was sick and sleeping. With two ballgames, in two different towns, in two different directions, I imagine the library would have been a pretty lonely place anyway. I feel considerably better today, not 100%, but better.  Just tired and draggy.

Speaking of the library, go to the homepage at  and notice the tab marked "OverDrive".  YES!! E-books and audio books can now be checked out & downloaded online.  Patrons can log in with their complete 8-digit library number and a PIN.  Check with the library on these. This has been a few years coming and we hope that library patrons who joined other libraries in order to download will "come back home" and download via our library. We haven't had any training in using the process yet, so just click on the "Help" link once logged in. We'll be learning right along with you using the same link.  I did notice that they have some pretty good videos explaining how things work, a list of compatible devices and any software you might need to download.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Let Them Eat Cake!

Our twin grandchildren were one year old on the 19th and celebrated their birthday Sunday in their new house. They moved in on Saturday and had a birthday party on Sunday for a whole bunch of people. Mom & Dad looked a little tired on Sunday. :) Of course, we had the required birthday-cake-all-over-the-face pictures....

Holden wasn't really into it...he'd just had supper and he was tired...missed the afternoon nap. Hayden, on the other hand, got right down to business stuffing that piece of cake into her mouth. And then looked around for more. It really was good cake....the other grandma baked & decorated it.

And here's their new house:

I think they are going to miss their acreage, but this house has so much more room & it's in a nice quiet part of town where they won't have all the noisy truck traffic that developed on their road after a big grain handling facility was built to the south.  And hey, you can see by the piles of shingles that it got a new roof just before they bought it.

As for me, I've been working on some Fall projects that I will post later and celebrating National Sewing Month by cruising the online fabric stores and buying fabric. I added up the amount and realized I may have gone a bit overboard. Most of it has a planned purpose and like I always say, fabric is an investment, and the price isn't likely to go down.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Pears 'n Apples

The harvest is good this year.

Hanging in clusters, like grapes....really big grapes.  :)

More were added after I took this picture.
Last of the McIntosh apples...they're really nice this year.

Some serious canning and dehydrating work here.  The Golden Delicious apples are my preference for dehydrating and they're ready to pick too.  Tomatoes are about done, red bell peppers are getting ripe, squash is about ready to eat. The sweet corn didn't produce as much this year for the amount planted, but all in all the garden did well this year.

Pretty soon we'll be eating a lot of Pear Pie and Squash, Potato & Sausage Casserole. We look forward to it all year.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Latest Finish

Today we have a beautiful Fall day and I should be outside enjoying it. Instead, here I am, in the house sewing and taking breaks to play on the computer.  Here is a picture of my latest finish....just so you know I do get some things done. I always like to take my finishes to Quilt Club for Show 'n Tell before I put them on the blog.  That way my hometown quilting friends get to see them first.

It will be donated to Quilts of Valor. It's a good thing there's such a worthy cause to donate to since I love making them, but what would I do with all of them? Pictures to go through from time to time take up much less space in my small house.

And here's the next will look completely different when finished.

I have a perfectly good UFO that just needs borders before it's ready to quilt, but do I work on that??Oh, no!! Starting something new is so much more fun.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Don't Even Think About It!!

Has your DH or one of your dear children ever asked to use your fabric scissors?  Should they have the audacity to do so, this diagram might be useful:
I found it on Bonnie Hunter's blog and it was just screaming to be shared. :)

There's a quilt on the frame, so maybe I'll have something "quilty" to share soon. This past month I've spent a good bit of time freezing & canning corn & canning tomatoes.  I had picked another batch of tomatoes & a neighbor brought over a 5-gallon bucket full that should all be ready to can on Friday. I still have some canned whole tomatoes left from last year so will maybe do one more canner full of those and then start making tomato/veggie juice.  It's my choice of juice for breakfast.

Have you used the Tattler reusable lids....plastic lid & rubber ring? I used some last year and didn't have much trouble, but this year I've lost 2 jars (bottoms fell out) due to over tightening the metal rings and had two jars pop open as soon as they came out of the canner. I decided I had reused the metal ring from the first jar that popped open on the second one and that it must be defective, so it got tossed.  Put on a different ring, re-processed about 25 min. and all was good. There is a knack to using the Tattlers. Kind of like when my Grandma used the old zinc lids with the rubber rings.  When putting the lids on the jars just tighten lightly....finger tight, the directions say. Then when they come out of the canner you finish tightening them up.

After having the long weekend and my regular days off work, I head back tomorrow. Not really terribly enthused about it, but the money buys quilt fabric and pays for Internet service, among other things, so..............hi ho, hi ho, it's off to work I go.  :)  :)

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Time For More

Today was our Orchard Quilters meeting at the library. The project was making the Missouri Star Quilt Co. "Disappearing Hour Glass" block. (no picture, sorry)  I had watched the video several times and made a couple sample blocks at home that turned out perfect. The first two I tried to make at the meeting were a disaster & I gave up on them. The next two looked fine, but when I took them home they were about a quarter inch bigger all around than the samples. A ruler and rotary cutter took care of that problem in short order. Even managed to save one of the disaster blocks!  I think the problem must have been that the samples were sewn on my main machine and the ones at the meeting were done on my traveling machine. Made some more on the main machine after coming home and they turned out fine. Thus my theory.

I had finished a couple things that I took along for Show 'n Tell so now I can post the pictures here.

It's my version of a Jelly Roll Race quilt using Jo Kramer's directions and her daughter Kelli's strip calculator to make the size of quilt you want.....not what the original Jelly Roll Race quilt gives you. The back is made out of 20" squares of hand dyed fabrics in greens & browns that I made years ago. It will be a donation to Quilts of Valor (QOV).

This was another kit provided by fellow quilt group member Jennifer. I didn't need a child size quilt right now so added it to her collection for donation.

The next couple days off work will probably be devoted to freezing corn. The tomatoes are getting ripe so there will be canning in my future...not nearly as much time for sewing. I want to keep working on the Disappearing Hour Glass blocks before I forget how to do them and maybe work on the Orca Bay quilt. It's getting high time to finish it...there are others I want to start!!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Blame It On Microsoft...........Partly, At Least

Ever since the summer of 2005 our automated circulation, cataloging, web opac system at the library and the computers we use for it have worked very well.  No problems to speak of. Suddenly last Saturday I discovered that the WebOpac program wasn't working. The webopac.exe file had gone missing. Strange.  In reinstalling it I found that Avast Anti-Virus was blocking it. Easy enough to fix...just uninstall Avast and install AVG in it's place. It should all be good now, right?? Well, it would have been except I couldn't enter the license and activation numbers. After fiddling with it on Monday and Thursday, calling tech support, only to find out they wanted five years worth of maintenance fees to bring us "up to date", I finally solved the problem yesterday, Saturday.  MICROSOFT INTERNET EXPLORER had to be set as the default browser!!!!  A week's worth of frustration!!! All that stress and aggravation because of Avast, Microsoft and the automation software company who wrote the software to only use Internet Explorer.......and didn't say so in the instructions.

This weekend is our local annual celebration.  The parade was this afternoon and I opted out.  De-papered string blocks instead.  Hubby went to watch and came back and said it was a long, drawn-out, tedious affair.  So I guess my intuition was telling me it was better to stay home where it's cool and out of the wind to get something done instead of being downtown getting a good sunburn.

This coming Thursday is the last Story Time for the summer at the library. I've had fun planning crafts and picking out books, making posters, etc.  I really thought we would have better attendance than we did, since there are quite a few kids in the right age group in town. We started out with five kids each of the first two weeks and this past week were down to two.  I don't have much hope for this last one. If parents won't see that their kids get to the library it doesn't happen.  It's a good thing I enjoyed the getting ready part.

Hope everyone's enjoyed their weekend and that you all have a good week ahead.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

I'm A Little Slow With This

This is what we made at our July Quilt Club meeting:

Mine is a nice centerpiece for my table. Some members were going to make more for a set of placemats.

Can you believe the crazy stuff on the news any more?  A civilian airliner shot down. What's the point in that? Tens of thousands of Central American minors illegally flooding over the southern border, with 100,000 expected by years end. What kind of parents would turn their children, some only 8 or 9, over to a coyote or a drug cartel to smuggle through Mexico and into the U.S.? Are they so naive as to believe that those kids will be safe? That most of the U.S. will welcome them with open arms? Sometimes I think ignorance really would be bliss and avoiding the news on TV, newspapers and the Internet might be the best course.

Heading back to my sewing room to hide from all the craziness.......

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

I Was Saving These.....

...for Show 'n Tell at my quilt group meeting before I posted here.

This is a donation quilt that was started at last month's meeting.  We each received a pre-cut kit made by one of the members. When we return the finished product to go to charity we get another kit that we can make up and keep if we choose. I thought it turned out pretty....the binding just MADE the whole quilt. I hope some little girl will love it.

This one was started with one block made at the May meeting. Same deal, bring back the finished product and get a surprise. I had the top finished by the June meeting and got it quilted and bound in time for the July meeting. It will be donated as a Quilts of Valor quilt when I get a couple more quilts made.  You just get more bang for your buck if you have at least three quilts to mail at once.  One at a time gets pretty pricey.

This one will be staying at my house.  It's the Jamestown Landing pattern by Bonnie Hunter.  The very first time I saw a picture of it I knew I had to make it. The pattern was first published in an Australian quilting magazine and I tracked it down and bought a copy.  The pattern is also in Bonnie's book, String Fling: Scrappy, Happy and Loving It! available to buy on her website.  I found the layout diagram in the magazine to be most helpful in putting it together.

Happy quilting everyone!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Last Day of the Long Weekend

Well, not so long since I had to work on Saturday.  A peaceful 4th of July weekend at any rate...some work, some yummy food I don't usually make, a little sewing, a nice long phone conversation with a cousin I don't see very often. When I got up this morning I wasn't sure what I'd do today. The quilt I thought I would finish binding got done yesterday after work and I finished the book I was reading later in the evening, so here's this mess...

It will be a Quilts of Valor quilt someday.  Kind of a Jelly-Roll Race quilt, but not quite. I used the strip calculator at Jo's Country Junction to figure out how many strips to cut and I'm using her directions for putting it together in the size I want not the size a jelly-roll race quilt gives you. The colors are supposed to be reminiscent of camo...browns, tans and greens...we'll see.

Now, brace yourselves for cute grandchildren pictures...don't say I didn't warn you!!!  LOL

Our little firecrackers in their 4th of July outfits. I really like Holden's shirt..."I (heart) chicks with sparklers".  He's gonna be a heart breaker some day.

Friday, July 4, 2014

It's The 4th of July!!

Have a happy and safe one.

Do you have any fun plans for today?  I'm just making potato salad, fried chicken, and pound cake with strawberries and ice cream for supper tonight. This afternoon I intend to work on quilt bindings. Hope to get at least one small quilt bound and maybe another slightly larger one. Last night someone to the east of our house shot off about a weeks wages worth of fireworks. Really pretty ones, but can you say BOOM?!? Some of the ones I've heard this past week have made me wonder if somebody wasn't trying their hand at making their own fireworks.

Enjoy your long weekend everyone.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Wow...Time Sure Flies!

When I logged into Blogger I could hardly believe it's been so long since I posted. Not to worry, though, I'm still alive & well.  I just haven't finished any quilty projects, or any other projects for that matter, so had nothing to show. Still don't, but am making progress. Quilted a couple quilts during the past week and have been working on these string blocks that I started around two years ago. Seven more to go and there will be enough for a quilt. I really slowed down on that project when I used some of the blocks for a baby quilt. After that other projects got my attention and everything sat in a bag for a year or so. Finally this spring I decided it was time to get to work on finishing some UFOs.

Today I loaded Jamestown Landing on the machine and made one pass across it. It's been awhile since I did a bigger quilt and I forgot how long it takes to load one, line up the pattern and wind all the bobbins. Maybe it's time for a set of Red Snappers.

The kids had the twins' first professional pictures taken last week at TaHaZouka Park. I thought this one was just so cute. (As the grandma I don't have to be impartial.)

Our niece, Kelley Gubbels, took them and I think she did a fantastic job. I can't wait to see the rest.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Happy Monday

It's a beautiful day today after a nice rain yesterday. It was much needed. And if you're a quilter and don't like Mondays, no matter how nice, this is for you...

The one thing that kind of takes the shine off the day is the bill I got from the Post Office. $34 a year for a PO box to get my mail....and I live right here in town....just a block or a little less outside their "magic circle."  More expensive and less service every year, that's our Post Office. And now the Feds want to manage our health care???   Please!!!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Weekend

I hope everyone has had a nice Memorial Day weekend. Three days is always better than two!!  Of course I had to work on Sat. so that whittled it down a little, then we did the cemetery rounds after I got home. Must have been around seven when we got back. By then I certainly didn't feel like cooking so we just stopped at the gas station & picked up some sandwiches and chips. Not the healthiest, but it hit the spot.

Yesterday we went to a 60th anniversary open house. Such a crowd!!  The Methodists really needed to build a bigger fellowship hall than they did.  Too noisy and too warm, but there was a lot of family there that we don't get to see very often. The only trouble was that by the time we got there, went through the line and ate our ice cream and cake a lot of them had left so we didn't get to talk to them.

Our day today was quiet. I finished putting the borders on a quilt so it was a productive one. I could have done with a little less just makes me wilt, but I powered through. Had several thoughts about putting the air conditioners in. LOL

Thank you to all our service men & women, past & present, for making our way of life possible.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

So.....It's Sunday Again

....and it started out so promising....clear and sunny. Warmer than the mornings have been recently. Now it's clouded over and the wind keeps blowing harder all the time. It will be a good day to sew and I intend to get the center of this top put together.

I like to lay tops out on the floor and then take a picture. I seem to catch mistakes better that way. And sure enough, I caught of the narrow rows at the end was turned wrong. It got corrected before I took this picture.

In other news, this is the pretty bracelet I won in a giveaway on the Surviving and Thriving blog. Thanks again Donna.

My other big news is that I'm writing this post on my new Asus Windows 8 laptop.....well, maybe not so new, I've had it for a little over two weeks now.

I like it fine now, but it came with the standard Windows 8, so the first thing I did was download and install all the available updates. Then installed Windows 8.1 from the Microsoft Store. That took FOREVER and was a pain, but once it was all finished it sure made Windows 8 easier to deal with, plus you can start out with the old desktop opening screen. Something familiar is always good though I do find the tiles on the new type of start screen to be handy now that I have my programs installed and the extra tiles banished. The Windows 8.1 Spring Update has been installed so I should be good to go now. I loved my old Dell but it's nice to have a laptop that I'm not constantly adjusting the tilt of the screen on because it gets all pixelated in red, blue or green. Sometimes all three. The screens on the Dell Inspiron seems to be their weak spot.

Just to finish up here's pictures of my twin grandbabies. They were getting ready to go to graduation last Sunday. They're eight months old now, both have teeth and developing distinctive personalities.

Before we know it they will be climbing on the school bus and heading off to kindergarten. I want them to stay little longer!!!

Hey, the sun's coming back out....the day is always better when the sun shines!!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Not Much To Share

If you ignore the dirty dishes on the counter, the clean ones in the dishwasher and the cat hair all over the carpet you can get quite a bit of piecing done. LOL  I'm getting closer to getting these tops together. One is in rows and the other is ready to have the rows sewn together.


 Stay safe if you're in the area of the predicted storms tonight.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

March Was So Tiresome was. Started out with eye inflammation in my left eye. That cleared up after about a week but left my eye kind of blurry and watery....not terribly conducive to getting anything done.

Quilted a couple of pictures. Read a couple books....nothing sensational. And...wait for it.....caught some virus with lots of chest congestion and a bit of a head cold. Do you know how tired you get from constant coughing?  Spent about two weeks sleeping in the recliner to relieve the cough at night so I could get at least some sleep.  I never missed a day of work but sure didn't feel like doing much. Did do some sewing. Actually, when I was sewing is when I felt the best and I got a lot done on two quilts that have been in the works for a while. No you see a theme here?

March was just sort of a lost month and that's why you haven't heard from me. I can't believe April is already half over.....think I must have still been recovering from March as part of April slipped by. Did finally have to do the taxes....was happy to discover that the IRS lets you keep more of your money when you get old. :)  Something to look forward to if you're still young. Yeah, right!

This week....leading up to Easter....worked on Monday, worked on computer cleaning for a couple people today, need to go shopping tomorrow.....need stuff for grandkid Easter baskets.....have to go to work on Thurs.....grandson might be coming to stay that night or the next day.......and I have a pile of granddaughter's pants to hem by Sunday. Not real sure when I'm going to clear all the junk off grandson's becomes a catch-all between visits.

Hope everyone has a nice Easter......and that you don't have to dig through snow to find your Easter eggs. Spring in Nebraska is such an adventure!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Luck Of The Irish To Ya!!

Sunday Sewing

Would you believe.....I got the first row of Orca Bay blocks put together?

And the start of the next row is laid out.

I will be ever so thankful if I can get this whole top put together without botching it up!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Better Late Than Never

These are three quilts I made as QOV donations.  They were supposed to be finished and mailed off before Christmas. I got them finished, finally, and was saving them for Show 'n Tell at our Orchard Quilters meeting. Our meeting was earlier this week so now it's time to share them here.

Good old String Blocks.

BQ pattern redrawn to a 12" block size.

Judy Laquidara design.