Thursday, September 29, 2011

A Couple Things...

I saw a couple interesting things today in my readings that I thought I'd share. 

First up...We all know how much I like Pinterest so it should come as no surprise that I'll be joining Amanda from the Modern Marigold in her upcoming Pinterest Challenge. 

Basically she is trying to motivate people to actually do the things they are pinning. Crafts, quilts, recipes...whatever you are pinning to your little inspiration boards, just DO it and link up to her blog on Tuesday.  Sounds easy, no?

The other thing I will hopefully be joining is a Christmas Sew-Along at Sew, Mama, Sew.

The really cool thing about this sew-along is that there are three choices of items to sew...placemats, an Advent calendar, or a Christmas tree skirt, or get crazy and sew them all! I'll be doing the tree skirt. We don't have one and the past few years I've just thrown some random fabric around the bottom and it ends up looking a little pathetic. 

Each of the featured projects are being taught by a super-talented blogger. Placemats by Elizabeth at Oh, Fransson...Advent calendar by Linda of Craft Apple, and tree skirt (or pants as they are calling it) by Monica of Happy Zombie. Fabulous prizes are involved as well, so who's in?

Linking up with the lovely Rebecca Lynne for Think Tank Thursday.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Across the Sea


I'm  not sure why I feel like this has taken forever to finish since I only started it a few weeks ago, but I'm so glad to be able to move it into the finished pile. I really do love this quilt, and have had fun sewing along with other talented quilters.

Here is my "cheater" backing:

It was such a pretty afternoon after several rainy days, so the kids and I went outside and got a little carried away taking pictures...

While I was trying to take these pictures,Wyatt was teaching Carson how to be silly...

Then I tried to get a real group shot and this was the best we could do:

Silly boys.

I'm so happy to be donating this quilt to the newly formed Terre Haute chapter of Project Linus. Hopefully someone else's silly baby can get some comfort through this quilt.

An enormous thank-you to Kate at Swim, Bike, Quilt for organizing such an amazing project. I can't even imagine the number of quilts that are being donated due to the 100 Quilts for Kids campaign, but I am completely amazed by the generosity of the quilters who have donated their time, talent, and supplies to this project.

A big thank-you to Megan at Canoe Ridge Creations for hosting {Sew} Modern Monday.

And yet another thank-you being sent to Jenna at Sew Happy Geek for hosting Manic Mondays.

One final thank-you to the girls at Quilt Story, Heather and Megan, for hosting Fabric Tuesday.

Please take some time to visit these awesome link-ups and see what other talented makers have been creating!

WIP Wednesday, vol. 7

Where did this week go? 
I feel like I spent some time sewing, but it doesn't seem like there is much to show for it. 


My little Halloween mini. More about it here.

Still in Progress:

I was really hoping to have my Across the Sea done today, but alas, my machine binding skills are crap and I spent the evening on the couch with my seam ripper. I'm not sure why, but I always feel guilty when I decide to attempt machine sewing the binding on a quilt. Like I'm cheating or something. Then I feel worse when I have to rip it out because it looks so bad. And since this is a quilt for donation, I feel even worse, like I'm trying to take the easy way out of helping someone else. I know it makes no sense, but apparently I have guilt issues... 

Anyway, hopefully I'll get the pesky binding sewn on today and have a finish for 100 Quilts for Kids.

All the Kaleidoscope blocks are trimmed and their layout finalized. I need to decide on a backing and get that started as well.

No Progress:
I have done not-a-thing on my Dead Simple quilt. In an effort to get the Across the Sea finished and out the door I have told myself that I couldn't work on this until it was done.

Only in my Head:
I would like to get two more quilts made before Christmas. One for my sister-in-law using Hometown and one for my mother-in-law, probably using the DS for JoAnn's fabrics in the blues/greens. I just need to figure out what patterns to use for each.

A big thank-you to Lee of Freshly Pieced for hosting WIP Wednesdays. I can't wait to see the new fabrics she has come up with, can you?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The One About the Dishrack

One day last week I was on a wild cleaning spree and tidied up the cabinets under my kitchen sink. There really isn't much down there other than trash bags and dishwasher detergent, but there was one of those wire dish racks lurking in the back. I never use it as I prefer my dishmat if I have to actually hand wash something, so I started to chuck it in the trash.  Then I got that little nagging feeling and wondered if there was a way I could re-purpose it instead.

One of the biggest problems that my kids have when they are supposed to be cleaning their playroom is getting their books put away. Right now we have a regular bookshelf in there, but that just doesn't help. Kids recognize their favorite books by the covers so having them in a bookshelf with only their spines showing is just asking for trouble. The first bedtime story means that all the books will be cleared from the shelf in their quest to find the one they want. I have seen lots of great ideas about different ways to display books with their covers showing...Vinyl rain gutters, Ikea spice racks, expensive book displays...Personally, I think the rain gutter idea is genius, but it just won't really work in our playroom and I'm sure my kids would have it off the wall in no time.  

You see where this is going??



Now they can find the books they want without swiping them all off the shelves first. I'm still going to edit their collection down to about a dozen books out at a time and just keep the others put away until it is their turn in the rotation, but I think I like this solution. We'll see if it helps...

Monday, September 26, 2011

Halloween Mini

I am generally terrible at decorating for the holidays. I have good intentions, I just always procrastinate then never get it done. But my kids are getting to the age that they notice these things and really get excited about decorations, so I've decided to put forth a greater effort. 

I bought a few Halloween fabrics with the plan to make some sort of table runner with them, but again found myself putting off actually making it. Well the other day I went to Kohl's and they had their Halloween decor on sale (sidenote: is there ever a time that things aren't on sale at Kohl's?) so I bought a big Trick or Treat bowl to use for our candy. I set it on top of the cabinet where I wanted it but thought it needed something underneath. At first I thought about just making a simple felt mat to put under it, but then realized that this was the perfect time to use some of those Halloween fabrics. 

My only problem is that now I don't want to cover it up with a bowl, so I'll have to find somewhere else to put it. Most of the fabrics are from the Matilda line by Cosmo Cricket. The candy corn and spiderwebs are some that I found on vacation in Wisconsin. My plan was to make it a little more asymmetrical, but apparently that is a problem for me when I am actually trying to do it.

For the back I used a print from Alexander Henry's "The Ghastlies", so it is really kind of reversible.

Friday morning I was in my sewing room trying to get some things ready to ship and my two year old picked up my pinking shears and asked where I got them. He is kind of obsessed with asking that right now, so I didn't think too much about it until I heard the sound of fabric being cut. I looked up to see him taking a big snip into the edge of my little quilt.

Deep breaths were necessary.

Later when I got the chance to work on it again, I decided to just stitch it up and move on, because the binding would hopefully cover most of it. 

Turns out, the binding didn't cover most of it, but I really don't notice it that much since it kind of blends with the creepy smiles. Kind of.

A big thank-you to Megan at Canoe Ridge Creations for hosting the party! Please visit her and check out some of the other wonderful guests while you're there!

Another thank-you goes out to Faith at Fresh Lemons Quilts who is hosting a party for mini-quilts. Go see her and check out the other minis being made at:

And yet another thank-you being sent to Jenna at Sew Happy Geek for hosting Manic Mondays:

One final thank-you to the girls at Quilt Story, Heather and Megan, for hosting Fabric Tuesday, an awesome collection of sewing projects.

Friday, September 23, 2011


Would you believe that I almost forgot about this? 

I was sitting in the pre-school drop-off line this morning thinking about what I should write about today when I remembered!

So, since I forgot to specify that you should leave two separate comments for your color combo and soups, I went through and added a number at the end for each of the 10 entrants who left both in one comment, giving us a total of 117 comments, not 107. Clear?

And now, the moment you've all been waiting for...

And who is lucky #34??

Congratulations, Allegory! Allegory must have some kind of special connection with Mr. Random Number as she was also the lucky winner of a recent Go, Baby! giveaway from Angela.  The gift certificate may not be *quite* as exciting as the Go, Baby though! 

Have a great weekend, and hopefully next time we meet I'll have at least something finished!!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

If you have a minute, go check out this hilarious calendar.... All proceeds go to a great cause!

WIP Wednesday, vol. 6

Well, after that exciting morning yesterday, I actually got a little sewing accomplished.

My Across the Sea quilt is backed and basted! 

I cheated and just used a solid backing instead of making the pieced back like we are supposed to. I love the design of the quilt back as it is meant to be in the QAL, but well, I just have a lot of things going right now and something had to give. I happened to have a rainbow pinstriped flat sheet that goes really well with the front, so that is what I'm using. 

Are my kids the only ones who refuse to have the top sheet on their beds? I think it is a little weird, but it doesn't bother me too much since it means I'll have extra flat sheets to play with.

I am SO ready to get some free time to get started on quilting this baby. I just need to hatch a plan on what the quilting will be...

Since I was so successful in getting the basting done, I decided to go ahead and finish my Kaleidoscope 
blocks. I had 25 out of 30 finished, another couple half-blocks and some quarter blocks to put together.

Everything went together really well last night, and I was feeling good about things, so I started trimming  the blocks.  Then I realized that some of them were not so square, but I'm not turning back now. I just finished trimming them and hope to get the top finished this evening.

Finished Projects:
      Partner 1 and Partner 2 of the Goodie Swap are complete,  just waiting on shipping dates
      Mom's birthday present is done, ready to be mailed

In Progress:
     Across the Sea
     Dead Simple QAL...palette chosen and (I think) design finalized. Still need to get a couple fabrics 
                                      and plan the back.

We officially started harvesting yesterday, so my sewing time might take a hit for a while. But I love being out there this time of year, so I guess it's OK...



Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Just Your Average Day...

Not a whole lot going on around here today.
This is the first day in three weeks that we haven't had to leave the house, so I was hoping for a lot of sewing time, but of course life gets in the way.

I got Max down for his morning nap and sent the older boys outside so I could get started on backing my Across the Sea quilt and getting my swap packages finalized. A few minutes later I kept hearing a plane flying by and thought it sounded a little close. I went outside to look and saw this:

This is right outside our back door. I did not use my zoom to take this picture, he was just that close. We are getting cover crops air seeded onto the fields around our house and apparently today was the day.

It sounded like we were being dive-bombed for about 2 hours. Amazingly, it didn't seem to interrupt Max's nap. 

This is right out our front door. Look how low he gets! All I could think of when I was out there was how freaked out I would be if I were in the combine and saw him coming at me! Well, that, and wondering if he could see the crazy lady in fuzzy pink socks standing on the sidewalk trying to hold a baby and take pictures of his plane...

Shortly after coming in the house, I heard my 2 year old knocking on the back door wanting in the house. I opened the door to see him standing there with half his face covered in blood. He wasn't crying or anything, so it took me a minute to figure out if he was actually hurt or had somehow gotten into some paint. I got him cleaned up and found a fairly small cut on his forehead, much smaller what I was expecting. He told me that Wyatt had thrown something at him, so I called Wyatt in and asked him about it. 

What do you think he told me??  

"I was just trying to teach him how to duck!"
Seriously, what do you say to that? Crazy kids.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Quilted Needle Book

So, they say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right? 

Well, I totally lifted this idea from the super-talented Sarah at FairyFace Designs. She is just one of the many talented ladies participating in the Goodie Swap, and this is one of the goodies she made for her partner (who I am really hoping is me...)

Isn't that about the coolest needle book you have ever seen? I had plans to make a fairly simple needle book but after seeing hers and loving it so much, I wanted to attempt something similar. I kind of have this thing where I really want to figure things out on my own sometimes (and I'm impatient) so rather than waiting for the tutorial I just winged it.  It came out a little bigger than what I had envisioned, but I think it will be fine. I'm sending it to my mom for her birthday next week, so hopefully it will be useful. 

This was a very rough draft and there are several things I would change if I made another, which I probably will.  There isn't a button through that buttonhole yet because apparently I need a baby gate at my sewing room door.  After putting the buttonhole foot on my machine this morning and getting everything set up I stopped to look at the manual to make sure I wasn't screwing anything up. I had already changed the setting on my machine to sew a larger hole for the button I wanted. Then Max came in and started crawling under my table and crawled onto the foot pedal and my machine went crazy, so I turned it off really fast. After getting him occupied with something else, I turned it back on and got to work. Only after I had cut the slit for the button did I realize that I forgot to reset the machine for a bigger hole so now my button won't work. My boys love sifting through my button jar, so I guess that will be our activity when they get up from their naps. 

Thread in the pocket shot...I just had to.
I believe that Jules, another super-crafter from the swap made a tutorial for something similar after seeing Sarah's as well. I haven't really looked through her's, but if you have any questions about making one that aren't answered there, I would be happy to help.

Wait! There's still time to enter the giveaway....

So many great things are being linked up at Canoe Ridge Creation's {Sew} Modern Monday. Go check them out!

Also thrilled to be linking up to Fabric Tuesday with the beautiful ladies at Quilt Story.  Please stop by for a visit and see what other modern creations are being linked up!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Paying It Forward

I have seen this "Paying It Forward" project traveling around different circles in the blogging world and Facebook, but never really jumped in on it. I'm not really sure why, as I think it is an incredible idea. Who wouldn't want to get a fun, handmade gift in the mail? Maybe I just wasn't sure three people would really sign up? Who knows, but when I saw that beautiful Keera of was participating I decided to jump.

Keera was my very first follower on this little blog. I really cannot even remember how  I stumbled upon her blog, but I'm so glad I did. She is so sweet and talented, and is currently working on her first quilt pattern.

So, if any of you would like to join in on Paying It Forward, here are the rules...

1. I will make a crafty gift for each of the first three people to comment on this post. This little gift is a surprise, and will arrive to you anytime within the next 365 days.

2. To sign up to pay it forward, you need to commit to the project yourself... so you can pay it forward too! Just post this, or something similar on your blog so others can get involved.

 3. You need to have a blog of your own...(I'm actually not much of a stickler for this rule...if you want to play along but don't have a blog, that's fine with me. Just let me know and commit to doing three random acts of craftiness...)

 4. After commenting on this post, post something similar on your own you can spread the pay it forward love. I will email you asking for your mailing address so I can get your little treat in the mail. (Please make sure that your email address is visible on your profile or leave it in the comment.)

I have to confess that once I signed up on her blog, I completely forgot about it until she requested my address to send me the gift. Sorry!

So, who wants to play?

And just so I don't have a post without any pictures, here is the "goodie" that I made for my second partner in the Goodie Swap. Hope she likes it!

Friday, September 16, 2011


You GUYS!!!

Guess who got their 50th follower the other day??

So doesn't that mean I have to do a giveaway or something?
OK, you twisted my arm....

How about a $40 Gift Certificate from Hawthorne Threads?

I have purchased fabric from Hawthorne Threads several times and have never been disappointed. They have a huge selection of fabrics and always have the latest releases. But I think the thing that I love most is how user-friendly their website is. So many different ways to search for fabrics, sneak peeks of whats coming soon, and even a super-handy color grid so you can search for a certain color if that's how you want to shop. When you select a fabric, it shows how much is left in stock, all the information about the designer/collection, projects that have been made with that fabric, other fabrics in the collection, and even gives links to other fabrics with similar colors so you can find a coordinate. 

Here are just a couple cute fabrics I found this morning that I would love to have:

Bottle Caps from Going Coastal by Emily Herrick

Just Stay Little in Lilac from Children at Play by Sarah Jane

Making Paper Hats from Children at Play by Sarah Jane
Circles in Gray from Alphabet Soup by Zoe Pearn
I used Circles in Green to bind my husband's plus quilt and I love it! The gray would be awesome as well.

Let me tell you this....I can't even believe that I am writing this post. To think that 50 people care even the slightest about what I'm doing or making blows me away. Completely unbelievable to me, but I am so very grateful! Thank you so much!

A little disclaimer....I hadn't meant for this to turn into a commercial for Hawthorne Threads, but I like what I like...Hawthorne Threads has no idea who I am or that I am writing about them on this little blog.

So, to enter this giveaway, leave me a comment telling me your favorite color combination. I like people who follow directions, so make sure you don't just say "Hey, give it to me...." or I'll take your name out of the hat. 

For another chance, tell me your favorite kind of soup. It's chilly this morning so I think some soup is in order and I'm always on the lookout for new recipes.

I'll choose a random winner next Friday...Sept. 23, 2011.  Be there.