Friday, August 31, 2012


Thank God it's September..well, in just a few hours it will be.  I will be glad to see the month of August 2012 behind me.  I believe my mettle was tested to the nth degree beginning with the passing of my loving companion of 15 years on Aug. 2.  One week later my sister had emergency surgery on her leg resulting in a bypass procedure.  You can read about that episode here.   Since she needed someone to stay with her for a few days to be sure she was doing okay, Minnie and I spent last weekend at her house.  She lives 11 miles from my home.  By the third night it was decided that she could manage the night by herself and I could go home.  On Monday Minnie and I went back to her house and spent the day doing errands and chores around her house.  She was doing remarkably well all day, resting and getting around good so I went home for the night.  At 9:00 she called and said she needed help because there was blood all over.  I raced to her house and found her literally bleeding out.  She was still conscious but fading quickly.  I called 911 and held a towel to her leg where the blood was pouring out.  The EMTs came in and did their life-saving job.  She ended up being air lifted back to Mayo in Rochester where she underwent more surgery to repair the bypass site.  I have to tell you that I never saw so much blood up close and personal like that.  When I visited her on Wednesday she apologized to me for what happened.  Good Lord.  I'm so grateful that I got to her in time.  
She  was discharged from the hospital this afternoon and is currently in a transitional care unit at the hospital close to home where she can be closely monitored.  No one wants to see another episode like that again, ever.  Especially me.

In the meantime, Rog's family and I have been gathering his things and sorting.  A very emotional time for everyone.  It's very hard to see his clothing get packed up and sent off to the thrift store.   A very difficult time for all of us.  They will be back to take more of his belongings on Sunday.  Much to do and not much time to sew.
My good friends, Tammy & Greg, invited me and Minnie out to the lake tonight for supper.  They call it dinner, I'm a country girl and call it supper.  After a delicious pork chop off the grill, baked potato, salad and a splash of wine we looked up and saw this amazing sunset.

 And, tonight is a blue moon.  It's not really blue, it's the second full moon this month.  You know what they say about full moons and unusual behaviors.  Hmmm, that explains a lot.  Gosh, I'm glad August is over.

Happy Labor Day, everyone.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

FMQ Challenge for August

The FMQ Challenge tutorial this month is by Wendy Sheppard.  She showed us how to do a "simple and fun" quilting motif that she likes to call the Jester's Hat.  Cute little curly-cues that somewhat resemble jester hats.  I first practiced in my drawing tablet.

I was having trouble filling in the gaps.  I'm very comfortable doing swirly-type quilting but I was trying to do jester hats.  I did a quilt sample block next.
That went a bit better.  Next I went to the sample quilt I'm creating with the monthly challenges.  Hard to believe we've done 8 of them already.  This is the front side.

 A variety of pink/print blocks on the front and green flannel on the back.

So, there's my August challenge.  The hardest part of this challenge was getting it done.  I did this this morning at 5 a.m.
Thank you SewCalGal and Wendy Sheppard for the opportunity to learn new free motion quilting skills.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Monday Morning Bark

Sun isn't up, yet, but I have a busy day ahead so thought I'd moan and groan a bit.  

First, I had a dismal showing at the county fair this year.  Earned three second place ribbons out of five entries.  My crazy quilt came in second place, again.

The blue ribbon went to my friend, Pat, which should've gotten the champion ribbon in the wall hanging division for her flamingo.  

 The champion ribbon went to a painting of a John Deere tractor.  That gives you some idea of the type of community we live in.  John Deere is right up there with God and the American Legion.  The other two quilts I entered didn't  make the cut.  But, fellow quilt guild members did well in that category and I'm happy they won.  

I took second place for a knitted scarf and fingerless mittens.

 This took hardly any time to make and pretty simple.  I just entered it for the heck of it and it got second in the knitting.  The crazy quilt took months and months with embroidery, embellishments, piecing, free-motion quilting and took second.   Go figure!  

But, the ultimate disappointment were the tomatoes.  I entered three of my most perfect beauties (you've seen them before and know what perfect tomatoes look like) and got second place.  That wouldn't have been so bad except when I looked at the blue ribbon winner I gasped.  Wish I had a picture for you but I tend to miss those Kodak moments.  Let me just say that no matter how many blemishes or gnarly knobs your vegetables have, SIZE MATTERS.

Last night Minnie and I visited with my friend Beth at the lake.  She has a young dog named Razz (short for Rastus..her husband named her) and I thought Minnie and her should get to know each other a little better since I may need Minnie Care in the future.  That was kind of a circus.  Put a young dog with an older dog and you can't get a good  picture of either one of them.

I pretty much gave up on that.  Minnie had no interest in playing games with Razz but she did like her ride out to the lake.

Today Rog's children are coming over to start collecting his things..emptying out dresser drawers, closets, and cupboards.  It will be another emotional day.  However, the sun is shining and the temps are promising to be about perfect.

 Hope your day goes well.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

A Beautiful Morning

I hope it's a beautiful Sunday morning where you areI awoke feeling refreshed and ready to start the week.  Last week there was another bump in my road as my sister had emergency surgery resulting in a bypass on her leg.  She lost her left leg due to the MRSA virus and circulation problems over a year ago and it didn't look good for the right leg.  I visited her yesterday, thanks to my BFF Sandy and her offer to drive,  and the prognosis looks good.  She's determined to get to Hawaii in November with her girlfriends.  The heaviness I felt in my heart all last week has lifted.

My other sister from Omaha stopped for a brief visit on her way to northern Minnesota for her annual family gathering.  We haven't seen each other since January so we quickly caught up.  She left me with this

 and this

I will be making three bears from these two minks for a friend of hers.  The total  bear projects has now reached 21.  Be prepared to see a lot of posts on how these projects are going.  

I'm off to church.  Have a great day, everyone.  I know I will.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Bearing Up

When my sister passed away last December, I told her children that I would make teddy bears for anyone who wants them out of her clothing.  The children just got to the closets about a month ago and I was presented with this by my brother-in-law.

 There are 12 bags and a few of them have more than one clothing item.  I think I came up with 14 or 18 bears to make.  Yikes!  After opening all the bags to see what everyone  chose and a lot of head shaking (I told the family to think cuddly bears, no thin satin-like apparel), I decided to randomly select one bag and focus on that.  This is what I'm starting with.

 Two bears for my niece.  The jacket on the left is a very pretty glitzy piece.

I hope there's enough fabric for the entire bear.  The waist is elastic which cuts down on usable material.  

The other garment is a fleece pajama top.

This will be easier to work with. 

You can see that I have a challenge ahead of me for the next few weeks months.  Add all the quilting projects, paper crafting, yard upkeep, and a boat load of life issues and responsibilities, I'll never be boredStay tuned for the trials and tribulations of Bearly Wild in the blogs to come.  I think the next phase of my life is going to be interesting and even more challenging than the previous phases.  I also think that Roger, aka No. 38, will be holding my hand the entire way.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Going Forward..I Think

Some days I feel like I actually  have my act together but then I find out I really don't.  One step forward and two steps back.  I'm still dealing with post funeral tasks and trying to find time to take care of quilting projects.  I did manage to get the doll quilt finished and ready to send out to my swap partner.  I have spent several hours making thank you cards for my special friends which has been very therapeutic for me.  Then the phone rings throughout the day and before I know it, time has flown by and I feel like I haven't accomplished a thing.

The fair starts this week.  I'm going to show you what I'm taking.

 This is my crazy quilt which I wasn't going to show before the fair but what the heck.  The outside border is solid quilting with hot fix red crystals on the top.  The picture really doesn't do it justice.  It took me a long time to do..over a year..and I really like it.  I took it to the neighboring county in July to the fair and received 2nd place.  Let's see how it does locally.

I decided to take the scrappy star quilt.

 And the flannel woodland quilt.

 I also have a knitting entry of a scarf and fingerless gloves and I think I'll have to enter my tomatoes.  I need to share their beauty.

 They look like prize winners to me, don't you think?  

Time to go to bed.  I'm sleeping better now, but when I was waking up at 2 a.m., that's when I did a good amount of quilting.  Oh well.  Minnie and I will establish a new normal one of these days.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Working My Way Back

As some of you may have surmised by my previous post, I lost Roger, aka No. 38, my beloved companion of 15 years on Aug. 2nd.  He peacefully passed away in his sleep.  While it was a good passing for him, it left the rest of us in shock.   My brain and body is like the lint trap in the dryer.  Everything is a bit fuzzy but I'm still able to reasonably function.  And at times I feel like I'm going to spontaneously combust.  My family and friends are remarkable.  They are here for me as well as the neighbors and for that matter, the community.  Our town is small and since Rog lived here all his 75 years..well, you can imagine the outpouring of sympathy. 

I am okay.  Everyday is a bit better.  Minnie and I are working on establishing a new normal.  There is work ahead as many of you know.  

Yesterday I did some sewing.  Next week I have commitments to the county fair and the quilt club.  And all of you will keep me on task.  I've been reading your blogs and projects are starting to take form so you can see that some of that lint is beginning to dissolve. 

Thank you for listening.   I'll be back soon.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Cats on Quilts

Pets on Quilts started today Pets on Quilts and runs through August 9.  Hop on over to Lilypad Quilting and check out all the fun fur babies on quilts.  Do me a favor and vote for mine if you have a mind to.  Even if you don't have a mind to, vote for my girls anyway.

I'm entering my beautiful departed kittys because they deserve to be recognized.  I made quilts of their images years ago when I didn't know what I was doing.  Some days I still feel like I don't know what I'm doing.  

This is Ginger.
Ginger adopted us when she was only about 7 weeks old back in 1991.  I didn't think she'd fit in with a two-Dachshund household but the doxys loved her. In fact, I think she thought she was a Dachshund until Angel adopted us two years later. 

 It took Ginger  a week to get over the intrusion but eventually the two became the best of buds.  They delighted in ganging up on the dogs.  Sadly, Ginger became ill and passed away in 1998.  She was my cuddly girl.  I still miss her.  Angel lived to be 17 years old and became Queen Bee after the two dogs passed away.  When Minnie joined the household five years ago, Angel lived in my bedroom for three months..yes, three months..before she finally gave in and accepted the fact that Minnie wasn't leaving anytime soon.  She went over the Rainbow Bridge two years ago.  I miss my kittys but I immortalized them on quilts.

Ginger was done before I knew about fusible web.  Every piece was needle turned and sewn down with vast amounts of thread.  I never could get the eyes right but this is her.  She loved laying in the flower bed.  In fact, this is where she is buried.

Angel's quilt was made from a pattern called Sewing Cat by Edyta Sitar c. Laundry Basket Quilts 2007.  I drew Angel's image in place of the cat on the pattern.  She loved to be right in my face when I was at the old black Singer making teddy bears.

I know you expected me to enter Minnie in Pets On Quilts.  I'll at least give her some recognition.  She's my fur child and I will make a quilt with her image one day.  I made quilts of the other two Dachshunds, Max and Rusty, years ago and Minnie will be added to my Pet Gallery someday.
 But, for now, the kitty girls will get the recognition they deserve.