Tuesday, February 19, 2019

For Love of a Horse Baby Quilt

Our girl's best college buddy and her husband are expecting their first child. Back when she graduated, I made this quilt for her:


Now that she's moved to Iowa, I wish I had made it in flannel. Brrr...

She and our girl share a special bond with horses so I knew this special quilt needed horses and I've been saving and hoarding this sweet fabric for years:

I used this pattern:

                                Ritzy Bitsy Babies Quilt Pattern<BR>It's Sew Emma #ISE-108

And changed it up a bit in order to keep the focus on the main print. Then I started pulling fabrics from my stash:

I love this part! After a collaboration with my favorite quilt adviser I settled on this:

And in no time, I had the top pieced, and backed it with a pink Minkee,

Sandy, Jackie's daughter quilted a design called Chantilly Lace. and I chose to bind it with the black-white dot:

Then life got busy and it took me forever to get it bound, but it's finally finished!

Perfect timing though because sweet baby Sloan just arrived and our girl has secured tickets and is flying up for a visit, a hug, and lots of baby snuggles in a few weeks:

This little pony quilt finished at 45x45 and I hope it will be loved and treasured. I love giving quilts as gifts, but they come with one caveat: They must be used and loved.


No putting them back for safekeeping. When this ones wears out, I'll make another!


Friday, February 15, 2019

Shipping and Stitching

It's taking me longer than expected to recuperate from my trip last week and it may or may not have something to do with my age...the jury's still out. Lots of late nights filled with good conversation that I wouldn't have missed for the world, throw in a few early mornings to fix breakfast for the crew,  a few more late nights helping out at the safari banquet this past weekend,

and I am just PTO...plumb tuckered out. I feel something akin to a wet dishrag.

However, I made time to sew a bit on Sunday. I had visited with our North Camp gal  about including some fabric from clothing that belonged to her son and dad into her quilt and she brought me pieces of those shirts the other day. I hope to have this top pieced and off to Jackie by the end of the month.

I pieced a back for this quilt that I pieced a while back when I realized I could use some masculine quilts:


And one day last week, a need arose, so I am handing this one off to my friend who has a long arm quilting machine. The baby quilt still is not bound, but I'm making progress.

In the midst of everyday life, we shipped off 4 truck loads of cattle on Tuesday:


That meant I logged in some time in the kitchen:

We've had so much wind here lately, that it was a sweet blessing to have a day of calm, with bright blue skies for the crew to gather, sort, and load trucks:

Around here, a firm handshake is still about honesty and integrity:

Whew! Last truck loaded. Three cheers for shorter feed runs.

And new babies hitting the ground!

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

A Good Reminder

I'm sharing something really special today. It's the best article I've read in a long time...maybe ever. The caveat is that our girl wrote it so I may be biased, but I'd like to think I read it from a completely impartial position and that I would have been just as moved...and convicted, had this not been penned by our precious girl. In today's filtered world of social media, it's refreshing to read something honest, and true, and good. She has always been wise beyond her years. And honestly, it spoke to me on such a personal level that I lost myself in the message and it was only after I had finished that I remembered who had written this. My wish is that you too will be blessed by her message.

I See God

Thursday, February 7, 2019

The Last 10 Days

I've been away for a week visiting our boy and I have so many things I want to share, but they are not mine to share. However, I CAN share that it was an amazing week. I enjoyed spending time with these two monkeys:

During our wanderings, we ran into this gentleman who was having bike trouble. Our boy fussed at me for not having jumper cables in the truck 😏, but we were close to his place and the situation was quickly remedied:

It does my heart good to know the our boy is willing to lend a hand to strangers when he sees a need. I returned Tuesday afternoon, completely exhausted and utterly joyful. Given the chance, I could sleep for a week. As soon as I unloaded the truck, I headed out for a long walk with Skeet. Yesterday I cooked for a crew so my morning started early, but the day included Cherry Pie

so even the gale force winds that filled the air with dirt yesterday could not deter the song in my heart.

On another note, in an attempt to take better care of ourselves in our...ummm...golden years, I ordered this cookbook a few weeks ago.

It arrived while I was away. I have heard wonderful things about it and when I saw Judy, over at Patchwork Times, posting dishes using recipes from the author's site, to rave reviews, I caved. It's been a long time since I purchased a cookbook, but I am hopeful that this one will see a lot of use. With today's access to everything and anything online, I suppose cookbooks are becoming less popular. I have culled my collection hard, but I have about 30 that I have just haven't been able to let go. So, I'm browsing this very large cookbook, making a list, and hoping to find some new favorites. I don't know what it says about me that the first thing I want to try is the ice cream. 😄

No sewing has taken place for the last 10 days, but I have picked up where I left off and am binding a baby quilt so depending on how long I can keep my eyes open, I may or may not have a finished quilt to share before long:

Today I have a day at home. A day without cooking for extras. A day without leaving the dirt road. A day that will hopefully include a leisurely mug of hot tea. A good book. And a nap. And I wanted to share something I came across this last week by Ann Voscamp. It has been a good reminder for me:

Instead of focusing on the hurdles ahead of you,
Focus on Him beside you.
Instead of depending on your plan for this week,
Depend on His power for this moment.
Instead of being tempted to give up, or or give into fear,
Give thanks - this gives Him glory.
Instead of trying to do it all,
Let Him be your all.
Lord, cause me to lead an INSTEAD kind of life,
Because One loved me enough to give Himself in my stead.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Under the Needle: January

Boy Howdy! What happened to January?! If this is any indication of the year to come, I had better take a deep breath because the first month of the year just blew by. I am digging my heels into the dirt in an attempt to slow down time. I know...I know...it's not working. Even so, I get to spend so many of my days as I wish...riding shotgun with DH, trotting down the trail with Skeet, puttering outdoors, keeping the home fires burning, keeping the feathered flock in line, mucking out closets and shelves, enjoying a few road trips, celebrating a birthday, soaking in the kids when they visit, dishing up vittles, keeping pickup seats filled with cookies, and sewing a stitch or two between it all. I guess life has kept me away from the computer and my blog has suffered, but it's been a good month.

This month I worked on turning scraps into blocks for a quilt I am making for a friend - I'm about half way there:

I also left 2 baby quilt top with Jackie and picked them up yesterday - I love having quilts to bind:

I cut out the Zoologie quilt

 I turned the monkey fabric

into a quilt top that still needs a border:

And I pulled out these fat quarters, pressed them, and began cutting for a new project:

It seems I have spent the month making a little progress on a lot of projects, but eventually that ought to yield some finished quilts.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

2019 Quilt List

Last year I made 9 quilts. The year before it was 14. I guess life was busy, but this is not a race and although the list of quilts I want to make is never-ending, I am determined to enjoy every stitch. I love making lists, but this one changes all the time as I am inspired by new quilts that come to my attention or a need arises. Still, it's fun for me to begin the new year with a fresh list.

1. The scrap quilt I'm making for a sick friend.

2. A baby quilt for our girl's college friend's 1st child

3. A western scrap quilt to donate to the WRCA's auction - pattern to be determined - maybe this year I can close the lid of this bin

4. A flannel quilt using this FQ bundle I've had in my stash for years

5. A QOV or 2 - I have a Carpenter Star started and hope to build on it:

6. Wildflowers - I haven't decided on fabric for this yet. It calls for  a Layer Cake, but I'm planning on pulling something from my stash

7. Dizzy Daisy - using the Garden Delights Layer Cake I have

8. Modern Greek Cross - using the Ella and Ollie Layer Cake I have

9. Economie Zoologie - this was a kit I bought from Craftsy a few years ago

10. Jellystone - from Miss Rosie's Spice of Life book - I still need to cut the background, but the rest is cut - using fabric from my stash

11. A kid's quilt using this fabric because I'm cleaning out, this bin is also full, and this fabric wouldn't fit

I could easily double...or triple... this list, but I think this is doable and I've still got 9 quilts at Jackie's that will need binding when I get them back. I think I was pretty good about not bringing too much fabric home last year, but I'm hoping to bring  in even less in the coming year. Don't all quilters say that? 😏 I am not bringing anymore Layer Cakes, Jelly Rolls or kits into this house though. Let the stitching begin

Friday, January 4, 2019

Jumping into January

It took 2 days, but the Christmas decorations have been stashed away in their respective bins and hauled out to the shed - the way time flies, I'll be dragging them out again before I know it. Now I just need to find a new home for the dog toys:

DH's birthday is New Year's Eve. We began the day with a 4 hour round trip to haul our beef in for processing and then we celebrated with his favorite -a prime rib supper that evening:

But the day's not complete without birthday cake:

As far as sewing goes, it's been a while since I sat down at my sewing machine. I've got to get busy on a quilt for a friend dealing with some serious health issues so that's my first quilt project for the year:

I'm also tackling a non-sewing project. DH works ALL the time and I've been wanting him to spend a little time on a hobby so I'm cleaning out our office and helping him turn it into a reloading room. It's going to be a big job because I've got to find a place for the things we've stashed in there. I started with the closet at 4 this morning and I tackled 2 shelves. Lots of homeschooling and scrap booking supplies as well as 6 big black photo safe boxes filled with pictures - organized by date.

This project also means cleaning out the kids' closets and sending all their things back with them. I'm building a big pile to take to my mom's in a few months as well.

And contrary to the visual evidence, I am not a hoarder, but stuff has GOT to go! Mom is planning a garage sale and garage sales in her area are always a huge success. I'm also researching ways to sell scrapbooking and homeschooling supplies, I'm donating a lot, blessing someone else by giving it away, and making multiple trips to the dump. So, I have a plan, but now I need to implement it! I struggle with getting rid of things for a few reasons: It's perfectly good stuff. I might need it or find a use for it at some point. I could sell it and make a little extra money. Alas, there comes a time when I reach a point where I just want it GONE and that time has arrived. I'm excited that DH is finally getting his much deserved space and that spurs me on to empty the next shelf. 
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