Friday, December 21, 2012

Another Sister Bear

Another bear finished from my sister's clothing.  The tee shirt had three hot-fix sparkly hearts on the front but only one fit on the bear.  I think this one came out pretty cute with the eyelashes.  Four to go.


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Saturday Morning Bark

It's been a while since I've posted, which is unlike me.  I've been busy sewing teddy bears for one thing.  With Christmas approaching, I have orders to fulfill and spending hours at the computer reading and writing blogs takes a bite out of the day.  Not that I'm ignoring my blog friends.  You are all important to me.  I visit lurk your sites daily but am not leaving comments as readily.  

These are the three bears that are heading to Omaha to their new home.  They are 15 inches tall with movable legs and head like all my bears.  I used a full-length mink coat and used it all except for the collar.

 Also, I'm keeping up with Barbara Brackman's Grandmothers Choice: Votes for Women Block of the Week.

  Most of the blocks are fairly quick to do so if I clear a couple of hours off my daily schedule, the block is done.  I see the new one is already posted so I'll print it out and tackle it come Tuesday.  Instead of the 8" blocks, I'm making mine 6" with the help of 

Blockbase for Windows 
This is stand-alone software made available by The Electric Quilt Company  There are over 4,000 historic block patterns which can be resized and printed with rotary cutting instructions and/or templates.  You do not need the EQ program to make this work  that's why I like it so well.  I cannot afford  EQ at this point.  BlockBase is very affordable and I highly recommend it.  

Minnie is almost back to her feisty ways.  I wish I could say the same for my back.  Prolong sitting irritates the sciatic nerve and that's another reason for not being at the computer as much.  I guess it's too much sitting at the sewing you think?

Okay, that's what's happening here.  I have special company coming to my house on Monday, book club is meeting on Tuesday night and quilt guild meeting on Thursday night.  Good Lord, the month is half over by then.  Hope your week is as fulfilling as mine.  I'll be visiting with y'all again, maybe sooner that you think.  

Have a great weekend and thanks for stopping by.  

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Joni's Bears & Minnie

I promised some pics on those bears I'm doing from my sister's clothing.  I told her children to pick out a clothing item and I would make a teddy bear for them as a remembrance.  I was handed several bags with a clothing item and the name of the recipient.  Eighteen bears to make in all.  This was the first one I made from Joni's sparkly jacket.

I have five more done.

 My sister was a fan of red.  So, six down and 12 to go.  

I'm almost finished with the doll quilt for October.  It needs to go to Germany so I'll have to get in finished and sent off real soon.  I've been away from quilting too long because I felt a little rusty with this piece.

Minnie is spending 24/7 on her bed(s).  I have one in the living room, one in the sewing room where I quilt and one in the bear den downstairs.

The prednisone has taken hold and the pain meds keep her comfortable.  She cannot walk yet and I have to carry her  outside to potty.  Actually, she has no bladder control and doesn't know she has to go potty so,essentially, I'm dealing with doggy diapers.   The first two nights I slept on the floor beside her but last night I went to my bed and her bed was next to mine.  I've gotten advice from a few friends saying that she will eventually recover but it will take some time.  I hope they're right.  I'm afraid my back may blow out like it did in March and then what will we do?

Hope everyone has a good week.  I have no major commitments scheduled except a trip to the vet on Thursday.  But, that could change by tomorrow.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Minnie's Setback

I'm almost at my wit's end with stuff that has happened lately.  Last night Minnie got off the couch as usual to go outside and gave herself a shake and fell down.  Her back legs were nearly paralyzed.   It was my worst fear..she ruptured a disc.

We were awake all night as I was cuddling her and she was scared and in pain.  I called the vet one hour before they opened to be sure a doctor would be available and was in the door when they turned the key.  She had an xray just to be sure there are no tumors causing this.  She will be treated  first with anti-inflammatory medicine and pain killers. I was told it will be a long recovery period if she responds to the treatment.   I so hope she recovers without surgery.  I would not be able to go through another trauma and I need my Minnie.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Thursday Morning Bark

Life is good for Minnie once again.  She got through her surgery on Monday and is back to her favorite pastime, inspecting one of her best toys.

She got three stitches.

I'm surprised that she doesn't worry about it.  I thought she'd have to wear a cone but that wasn't necessary.  She also had her teeth cleaned and nails trimmed while she was down for the count.

 She actually looks rather proud of her battle scar.  It gets her lots of treats.

The fickle Minnesota weather is rapidly changing.  Temps in the high 70's and low 80's the last two days and it's snowing in northern Minnesota this morning.  That's a good thing because of wild fires in that area.  Where I live the temps will be falling throughout the day and it's very windy already.  There go our beautiful fall colors.  I did enjoy them while they lasted.  

Enjoy your day and thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

FO for September

In spite of all the cleaning and painting I did in September, I did manage to get back in the sewing room for a few hours.  I started and finished the doll quilt for my partner, Judee, at Doll Quilter's Monthly

The leaf blocks are 1.5" with the overall size somewhere around 13 x 16.  

I also did a mini quilt for our quilt guild but I can't show that as we haven't had our big reveal yet.  I'll just tell you that my partner requested a winter theme.

I started making blocks in a new Block of the Week which started in September.  
I've made four blocks so far.  The first three went very well.  

I got up early this morning and did this week's block.  It's called New Jersey.

That one went well, too.  But, I couldn't for the life of me get last week's block together.  It's called Kansas Sunflower


I gave up on this and came up with my own.

I have to applique the stem and leaves on this.  All these blocks are 6 1/2 inch and very challenging.

Tomorrow morning I have to take Minnie to the vet for a little surgery to remove a pesky cyst.  It never heals and she keeps worrying about it.
She'll also have her teeth cleaned and any other humiliating procedures that need to be done while she sleeps.

Do you think she knows her food will be cut off at 6:00 tonight?

She's going to be one upset little pooch when she doesn't get her usual treats tonight.   We'll have a long talk about it later.  Minnie and I have some good conversations.  Well, I mostly do the talking and she does the listening.  

That's it for quilty projects.  I've been doing bear making and will show some of those in the days to come.  


Thursday, September 27, 2012

FMQ Challenge for September

It's time to post my September FMQ results.  This month's expert is Paula Reid and she gave us her insights on free motion quilting, tips on how to get started and her fluff & stuff technique.  She gave us a design to practice and I put it on an orphan  9-patch block.

 It's actually a very nice design for a 9 patch, don't you think?  I put the design on my sample FMQ quilt next.

 It really shows up nicely on plain blocks.  I used Don Linn's method of transferring the design onto the quilt.  He was the April expert and you can check out his method here.

Hard to believe there are only three lessons left and I have to say my sample quilt is looking mah-va-lus.

Thank you Sew Cal Gal and Paula Reid for all your encouragement and expertise on free motion quilting.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Swaps, Giveaways and WIPs

Catching up on stuff..actually getting some bears sewn and the FMQ Challenge for September is ready to post.  First, I wanted to share the Doll Quilt Swap quilt I received from Judee in California.  She paid attention to my posts about liking sunflowers so she made me this.  

The center of the sunflower is embellished with beads.  She also sent me the cute little fall mug rug to the left of the quilt.  

I sent her a fall themed quilt of Minnesota's fall foliage and flying geese.

I won a giveaway from Sandi at A Legacy of Stitches a few weeks ago.  She had a subscription of Folk magazine to give away and I won the drawing.  The first issue came in the mail yesterday.

A glitzy magazine full of down-home articles, art, photos and recipes.  Check out their Facebook page at 

As for my WIPs, I joined a new Block of the Week group.  Yes, you read right..a block a week.  It's the Grandmother's Choice: Votes for Women group.  You can click on the button to the right or go here
to learn more.  The blocks are fun to do and referenced with BlockBase so templates can be easily adjusted to the size you wish to make.  The tutorials for the blocks are for a finished 8" block but, of course, I have to be different and make mine 6".  With BlockBase it's easy to do although a bit more challenging.  This week's block is the Sunflower block and the pieces get a bit small.

 I will be hand piecing this one.  I hope the blocks don't get any more challenging than this.

Okay, I think we're caught up for now.  I need to go outside and tackle the garden clean up.  We got a hard frost Saturday night so the tomato plants are done.  There are a lot of green tomatoes ready to ripen but the plants can go bye-bye.  We're having some gorgeous fall days in Minnesota but it's very dry.  No rain forcasted.  The box elder bugs are thick and those Asian beetles are swarming as well.  No pictures of those to share as they swarm around me as soon as I go out the door.  
Have a great day, everyone.

Sunday, September 23, 2012


I spent yesterday afternoon attending my very first Powwow, or Wacipi (Wa-chee-pee in Dakota means dancers).  It is the Native American people's way of meeting together, join in dancing, singing, visiting and making new friends as well as renewing old friendships.  It is a celebration of the community and was held in Mankato, Minnesota this weekend.  This year was the 40th annual Wacipi honoring the 38 Dakota who were hanged in Mankato on December 26, 1862 bringing an end to the Dakota War of 1862.  To learn more of this event click here.  Not an event that Minnesotans are proud of.  

The Wacipi began in 1972 and is held the third full weekend in September at Dakota Wokiksuye Makoce (Land of Memories Park) in Mankato.

The arena is blessed before dancing and considered sacred ground and treated with respect.  The arena is treated as a church.  The MC specifies who is to enter and dance.

 The Wacipi begins with the Grand Entry of all the dancers entering the arena.  Leading the Grand Entry are the flag bearers.  These flags may include the eagle staffs of various tribes and families in attendance, the United States and Canadian flags, tribal flags, service flags and the POW flag.  Flags are usually carried by veterans.

 Following the flag bearers are other important guests of the Wacipi including tribal officers, elders and royalty.  Next in line are the men dancers followed by the women dancers, and then the children.

 These are the "Jingle Dancers" because of the beautiful jingle sounds coming from their regalia.  Dancers wear traditional regalia, not costumes.  Each dancer creates his or her own regalia through many hours of hard work with each component having historical, spiritual, and personal significance.
0ften items are passed from one generation to the next or gifted to friends or relatives.  Just feast your eyes on the next few images.

 If you ever get a chance to attend a Wacipi, I highly recommend it.  It will move your soul.  Now, I'm going to go sew.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Friday Morning Bark

Hello Friends.
I've been caring for my sister most of the week so have been away from the computer.  I have a lot to share and will be back on the grid by Sunday, hopefully.  Have a good weekend everyone.  It's on the top of my list.

Wait, one more thing.  I have a third cousin who has discovered a quilt in perfect condition made during the Civil War by one of her ancestors.  She desperately needs to know the name of the quilt block in this quilt.  I haven't done any searching on this myself but thought I'd throw it out to my blog land friends just for fun.

  Any idea?  The center is bit hard to see but it's curved in the center and muslin pieces around that.  

Monday, September 17, 2012

A Miracle Solution

I've been angsting over how to move some of the big pieces of furniture in the area that I'm painting and cleaning.  Namely, Rog's man-cave.  His daughter and grandson are going to be taking a dresser and a hutch but now that it's harvest season, they can't get it for a few weeks.  Last night my friend Beth mentioned that her mom moves her furniture around with these plastic slidey things that she puts under the furniture feet.  So this morning I motored into the big town and visited Menards and this is what I found.

 You all probably know about these and use them but, as I mentioned before, I live in a hole.  These things are wonderful.  I was able to move this monster all by my own self.
 I had to use the 2-wheel dolly to pry the corners up so I could get those little hummers underneath but once that was done this beast slid happily where I wanted it.  This wardrobe will be used to store batting.  

I was also able to move this chest out of the bedroom.
 Rog built this many years ago and moved it in but I don't remember how he did it or who helped him.  I know it's heavy and at the time we were both younger and stronger.  So it's possible I helped but my back has no memory of that.  He also moved this in.
 This was his mothers and it is destined to go to his daughter.  I had to move it to get to the other wall so I could paint.   In summary, it was a good day.  I moved the furniture so I could clean the carpet in the bedroom and get at the wall I need to paint in the big room.  I'm doing my happy dance and my back has been saved.