Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thankful for the Hodgepodge

More gobble (degook?) this Wednesday. Click and join, will you?

1. Besides U.S. Thanksgiving, it's also National Game and Puzzle Week...what game have you played most recently, and who were you with? Have you worked a puzzle of any kind in the past week?

Besides my daily Words with Friends and this new Trivia Crack game that my 12 year-old likes me to play, the last "real" ("live and in person") game I played was Sorry with my son about two weeks ago. (I whooped him, thankyouverymuch.)  

When I watch a little guy on Friday nights--which is not every week--he loves to do puzzles. He's five years old and extremely bright. His spacial perception is amazing--and what's not to love about soft little fingers turning pieces around, and a voice asking, "Does this one go hee-uh? Noooo. I think it goes hee---uh. Yessss!!! I was wight!"

I hate doing puzzles with more than 100 pieces, FYI, unless it's a quilt with fabric blocks.

2. What is one place you were thankful for this year?

Kansas. In particular, my "oldest" friend's house.  Barb fixed up the guest room just for me.  This was her bedroom when we were kids, and I felt so relaxed as I steeped in nostalgia. 

She hung up this little floral quilt that I had given her as a gift from Russia when I went there.

3. Take a nap, watch football, go for an after dinner walk, or hit the stores...whichONE is on your must-do list for Thanksgiving day? For those of you playing along who aren't in the US, answer as it relates to any big holiday meal.

Well, I WANT to nap, but we will be at my son's house this year, and we usually go straight from eating to playing games.   I am so relieved and excited that my daughter-in-law wanted to host this year because, after at least 10 years straight of all that cleaning, cooking, hosting, cleaning-up after--I needed a break this year.  We're taking a fried turkey that hubby insisted on trying --and we pick it up from Dickey's on the way to the feast ! 

4. Besides Thanksgiving, what's your favorite home cooked meal?

Any that I don't have to cook.     (Can you tell I'm a bit burned out?)

5. What product from an infomercial would you most like to own?

A new knife set, although I have no clue what's "hot" right now in cutlery.

6. Christmas shopping? Have you begun? Finished? Will you shop on Black Friday? How do you feel about stores opening on Thanksgiving Day? What percentage of your Christmas shopping is done online?

I have started but this weekend is when I'll be doing the bulk of it online.  I absolutely will not shop in person on Black Friday! I hate that stores are open on Thanksgiving and that malls are forcing store owners to open on that day or risk paying fines. It's un-American!

7. What are you most grateful for that adds beauty to your everyday life?

Our home. 

8. Insert your own random thought here.

Please pray for the safe return of missing person Jessica Padgett. We know her sister personally and there are just no words to describe the desperation.  I had a dream the night before last that Jessica was found safe and alive, and I felt the Lord gave me a name that relates to her whereabouts (starts with a P and ends with a D.) I am hopeful. 

Monday, November 24, 2014

Doll Quilt 6: Pockets Full of Ice Cream

This doll quilt evolved. I had sewn four large pink-and-white vintage patches together in March and then said, "Now what?"  The quilt sat and sat until, one day, while working with this ice cream fabric, I heard 
it speak to me.  (If you're a quilter, you'll understand that fabric speaks.) 

I appliqued the upper left piece on point (that is, diagonally). The next one, upper right, I thought, "Kids love pockets. Let's make this one a pocket." And then I thought, "One is not enough," and --tada!--three pockets.  

In the world of make-believe, ice cream never melts. You can pull a cone or sundae out of your pocket at any moment and it tastes and looks as good as ever. 

Still in my infancy as far as free motion quilting practice goes, I sewed some squiggles. I also drew triangles and sewed over them .

Of course every bed needs a pillow, and little dollies love ice cream as much as their mommies.  So do folks who sew for them. I was eating a chocolate-dipped ice cream bar right before doing some hand stitching, and I dropped a piece of chocolate right onto a chocolate part of the fabric!   Had to chuckle...

The pillow fits inside the pocket. How cool is that?

For extra fun, I pieced the back because I just love the ice cream. And reversible things.

 I like how it gets all crinkly after washing.  This quilt may be my favorite in the bunch

Which fabrics were Barbara's? All the pink ones and the brown calico.
What did I learn from making this one? That pockets are a lot of fun. That echoing the shapes of the triangles is easy .That I wanted to keep this one for my baby niece, but she is not quite old enough to appreciate dollies. Never fear, little girl, Aunt Zo will make another one--or several--in your lifetime , just for you.

Finished in September, 2014.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Doll Quilt 5: Rough & Tumble

What is a fifth of seven? No, it's  not 1/35.   Not today anyway. 
It's this doll quilt!  This one is the fifth of seven that I made and sent to Operation 
Christmas Child. 

  •  What did I name the quilt?  Rough and Tumble
  •  Why? Because this was my first tumbler quilt and it went just a little bit rough for me. It wouldn't have, except that I am the kind of person who rushes in "where angels fear to tread." I have beginner's knowledge but expert's confidence sometimes. A tumbler quilt is made from a tumbler-shaped template, and then the pieces are to be sewn in rows, not columns! 
  • I was on vacation at the beach house when I made this; maybe I had drunk a tumbler of something before I sat down to my machine? I kept looking at my columns of sewn scraps, thinking, "Now how am I supposed to sew those zig-zagged things together neatly?" My solution? Don't!  Instead I treated them to the applique method. Hey, it worked, and I kind of like the outcome. 
  •  Who will receive this quilt?  Some little girl in a foreign country. 
  •  What inspired the fabric choices?  Bright scraps from my stash. 
  •  Which fabrics were Barbara's? The fruit, the purple floral, the blue mosaic, the girly accessories, the binding, the Eeyore backing. 
 What is the name of pattern? Tumbler (with my "adaptation"). 
  •  What did I learn from making it?  How not to make a true tumbler quilt. 
  •  When did I start the quilt and when did I finish it? August and September, 2014.  

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Doll Quilt 4: Posies and Chicks

Clearly, photographing at high noon on a blustery day in November on my front porch 
does not make for the best lighting.   But snow was threatening, the sky was overcast, and I couldn't find decent lighting inside the house either.  In the evening we'd  be packing the shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child so this was my last chance. 

This  is fourth doll quilt of 2014 that I made.

  •  What did I name the quilt?  Posies and Chicks
  •  Why? There are flowers on the front and little birdies on the back.  I made sure I wrote "John 3:16" on each  quilt. That verse is the heart of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
  •  Who will receive this quilt?  Some little girl in a foreign country. 
  •  What inspired the fabric choices?  A trip to my local quilt shop (cleverly called Hoppin' Bobbin) with a gift card last winter. When there are no flowers and lots of white on the ground, on the trees, on your car, reported on TV, in the sky....(get the picture?), then vivid flowers and sunny warm batiks and accents of blacks will jump out at you. 
  •  Which fabrics were Barbara's? The backing. (If you haven't read previous posts, Barbara was a woman from whose widower I bought a great deal of fabric last January. I promised him I'd use that fabric in charity quilts this year.)

  •  What is the name of pattern? Classic four-patch. 
  •  What did I learn from making it?  That quilting a square within a square is rather simple but not as easy as I thought.   I could have marked a perfect square in each one, but I eyeballed it instead  for a childlike, imperfect look. 
  •  When did I start the quilt and when did I finish it? March 2014.

(Yes, I snipped off loose threads before packing.  I try not to give gifts with strings attached!)