Shirting Fabric Find

While cleaning out my sewing room I came across a plastic storage bag filled with plaid shirting fabrics. They are beautiful fabrics, some were leftovers from a quilt I made for my son while he was in high school. Well he is 36 now so I have to admit that they've been lying around here for way too long. Instantly I thought they would make great charity quilts for the veterans.

Some of the fabrics were cut into 3.5 inch squares and 6 inch squares. So I ironed up the fabrics and cut some more squares in those sizes. Some pieces were so big I also cut 10 inch squares. I think I will easily get three quilts out of these fabrics.
I used up most of the 3.5 inch squares making this panel. I added an inside border and now I have to choose a plaid for a bigger outside border and viola! ...a completed quilt top. In my charity fabric bin there's a large piece of fabric with a white tailed deer print. I think that would make a great backing for this quilt.


What's on the design board?

There's not much going on on the design board this month. Or last month really. Once summer comes it's hard for me to stay indoors. Plus my time has been hijacked because we are hosting a family reunion at our house in 2 weeks. That part is easy. The hard part is that my husband's brother, his wife, husband's sister, her husband, my son, and his fiancee are all staying at my house over the 4-day weekend during the reunion. That's a lot of entertaining and a lot of figuring out where everyone is going to sleep. It's a fun problem to have.

I am making slow progress on my gypsy wife. I have sections 1 through 7 completed and section 8 is on the design board. Plus a few extra blocks I made that I do not like. Don't know what's going to happen with those. 

Sections 1 through 7 are sewn together and now it's too long to hang on the design board. So here is the best photo I could get without having to lay it on the floor.

I made a chocolate ganache pound cake from a recipe I found on Pinterest. It was not great. It wasn't bad, just not good enough for me to make it again. It sure was pretty though. Click for the recipe if you care.


Vegetable Garden Tour

This is a tour of my vegetable garden. This was a difficult year due to the bad spring weather and our trip to Europe. Our trip fell right smack in the middle of the best time to plant. So I took a risk and planted early not sure if the plant would survive the very cold spring nights. So far, the risk is paying off.

A few years back I planted 4 strawberry plants. I've never had much success with strawberries but for some reason these 4 plants went crazy. I had to build a rock border to hold them back. The plant were growing so wildly that I had to dig some of the up and replant them within their new boundary. They are coming in beautifully. I think the compost helped.

I decided to cut back a lot on plantings in the garden this year. So I purchased bean and pea plants instead of growing them from seed. In years past I was overwhelmed at harvest time so I think less plants will mean less stress later this year.

 My husband loves kohlrabi so we always have those planted. I wish they would take a little longer to be ready for harvest. I think I could pick a few already and I just planted them a few weeks ago! The cabbage is starting to form heads already too. I just love cabbage and look forward to making spring rolls at the end of summer.

 I've always planted 10-12 tomato plants in the past. This year I only planted 5. I hope that's enough plants to keep my family in homemade salsa-we shall see. In place of tomatoes, I chose to add a tomatillo plant this year. I look forward to fresh Mexican dishes later this year.

I planted 2 cucumber plants. One is a burpless and the other is a mini cucumber plant. My granddaughter cannot get enough of the mini cucumbers. I think she will enjoy picking them when she wants to eat some. 

I always plant a variety of peppers. I have 2 bell pepper plants growing. One is a red and the other green. I also plant a poblano and jalapeno pepper plant. It is so fun to cook by just heading out to the yard to pick my ingredients. There are already jalapenos forming on this plant.

Since I am trying to cut down on the work of managing a large garden, I planted less vegetables and added more flower pots to fill in the empty spaces. We do a lot of composting - we have 2 compost bins so the garden gets lots of nutrients. I also have a soaker hose connected to a rain barrel so watering in a breeze, especially on very hot days.

So that's my tour for now. I can't wait to take some July and August photos later in the year to see the progress. It's hard work but totally worth it.


My Little Free Library

The girl next door's mother did some summer cleaning right after school let out for the semester. The result was that I got a nice donation for my little free library. It is so generous of her to supply all these books. The neighbor is my best library steward.

My little free library gets lots of visitors who are children so I am always in need of books for young people. Sometimes I swap some of the books I get with other little free libraries in order to keep up with the demand for kids' books.

It is a fun hobby that I really love.


Sweet Sundays Quilt Donation

I made this quilt from a pattern I found in a magazine. It went together quickly and since there were butterflies in the fabric prints, I used a butterfly pantograph when I quilted it.

The quilt is made from fabrics that were donated to my church group. So I thought I would only use the donated fabrics to make it. As it turned out, our group leader wanted to make a quilt for the lady who donated the fabrics. When I showed up at our last group meeting with this, it was just what she was after. Mission accomplished (without even knowing it - ha!).


Quilts for Kids Quilts

I finished two more quilts for kids quilts this week. There's not a lot of time for quilting these days as we prepare for our upcoming trip to Europe. Yes, I said Europe. I can hardly believe it. A dream come true. I can't wait to go.

Here are my finished quilts to donate:


My Small World Quilt

Jen Kingwell
Here is my finished My Small World! After 1 year and 2 months, it is complete. My daughter, Bailee bought me the pattern last year for my birthday and I started working on it immediately. I got hung up with each section that required hand applique. I don't know why. I can do it, I guess I just didn't want to hand stitch anything. But for a quilt like this one, it had to be done that way, the right way. So I muddled through making hexies by hand, Dresden plated by hand, and a some curved pieces. I learned a few tricks along the way and I have to admin, every time I finished a hand appliqued part, I wondered why I put it off. It was all so very enjoyable. I did cheat a little; I paper-pieced a few blocks which was not how the pattern was intended but I wanted to see if it made any difference in how some of the blocks turned out. I didn't. So I machine pieced most of the quilt just like the pattern said to. After lots of thought I quilted this with a pantograph called Breath of the Gods. It looks like the wind is blowing across my little world.

So now I'm on to my current crafty project - hanging deer antlers. My husband is a hunter and he had one of his deer preserved in a way called European-style. I don't understand why they call it that, it looks rather southwestern to me. Anyway, I dug out some pallet boards I've been saving and made a panel to mount the deer antlers on. Now that it's ready to be hung, I have to decide where. I think that part might take me a little while since we aren't quite done with putting things back after our new floors were installed. I guess I will leave it on the floor until I figure out where it should go.


Client Quilts Finished

I quilted a few client quilts today and considering how busy we've been with our home improvement project, I'm surprised I found the time. I must confess, it felt good to do something more normal.

I had fun choosing the right pantograph for each of these as well and the thread colors. The quilts both turned out cute and I hope my client likes the results too.

I attended a volunteer breakfast at my granddaughters' school and we all went home with a few hand sanitizers with thank you messages attached to them made by the 5th grade art classes. Aren't they cute? I took the one that says 'I love popcorn Thursday' because I pop the popcorn for that fundraiser every month.