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Showing posts from January, 2010

Anna's Caterpillar Quilt

As promised- sunlit pictures of the third finished Caterpillar quilt. Missed the first and second? They can be found here and here. I want to take a picture of all three of them together. It's going to have to wait, though. Ellery is currently napping with hers.

This might just be my favorite of the three. I like its simplicity. I like the green sashing. I love the little fussy cut food.

I decided to do free motion quilting on this one- all in loops and swirls- kind of with caterpillar tracks in mind. The binding is the same solid dark green I used on the third quilt.

Anna's favorite part? The butterfly panel on the backing. There was no way I could not include it in Anna-the-butterfly-fanatic's quilt.

This quilt came together really quickly and easily. I used this pattern- the crib size. Since I made this pattern four times over for my MIL's Christmas Quilt, there were no surprises. I'm only another repeat or two away from having the pattern memorized. And I like …

Obsessive? Who Me?

Really, me- obsessive? What gives you that idea? Just because I woke up Wednesday morning and decided that I was going to finish Anna's caterpillar quilt no matter what. Even though the quilting was only halfway done- I was going to finish that quilt that day. And I did. Quilted in the morning. Attached the binding in the afternoon. Hand finished the binding that evening. Even managed to keep the kids fed and relatively happy. Didn't do anything else all day that I didn't consider absolutely necessary- like showering or mopping the kitchen floor. No pictures yet, yesterday was the busiest day ever. I washed it tonight. Hopefully I be able to take some good sunlit pictures tomorrow and get them posted.

Oh yeah, I discovered yesterday while sorting laundry that Ellery has outgrown pretty much all her dresses. I decided immediately I would make her some new dresses- before church early Sunday morning. Trip to the fabric store yesterday, washing and pressing tonight, sewing to…

And the Winner Is.....

Really, I had a lot of fun with this giveaway. The last time I did a giveaway, it was in conjunction with Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day. That meant my link was on their site. I got something like 300 entries- most from people who had never been to my blog before and never came back again. This giveaway is very different- only 24 entries. So many people I know personally and the rest loyal readers. All day, I've been anxious to see who I get to give stuff to.

According to, the winner is comment #4- Jennifer!
"I love the house blocks. I think they're all really cool and they make me want to try to quilt. I really think I might give it a go after finishing the girls' sock monkeys."
Jennifer is actually a friend of mine from high school I've recently gotten in touch again thanks to the wonder of Facebook. I'm thrilled because she has been mentioning wanting to get into quilting. Now, I get to enable! One big box of fabric and quilting goodies will…

One Project Down...

...12 to go.

The baby boy Very Hungry Caterpillar Quilt is done.

I've seen a wholelot of amazingquilts lately made from very simple squares. I just couldn't resist trying one of my own.

It 169 3 inch squares arranged in 13 rows of 13 squares. It measures about 39 inches square. I thought it would be a good size for wrapping up a baby without totally overwhelming them in yards of fabric.

After much debate, I chose a dark green binding.

The back just might be my favorite part. Lighter green with one stripe from the fruits print.

Brendan thinks I don't like green because I use it so rarely in my quilts. Truth is, I love green. I am just very, very picky about color. I like pure colors and too many green fabrics just don't meet my expectations- no muddy brownish greens, no dull greyish-green. This green is just about perfect. I may have to go buy some more.

And, yes, I know I missed blogging yesterday. The internet was down and it was snowing and there was no way I was driving…

A Honest and Accurate Accounting and a Giveaway

So, I've been joking rather a lot lately about becoming "that crazy quilting lady". Truthfully, I'm probably already there. Thinking along those lines, I decided to do a little counting today. I counted all my fabric/quilting sorts of projects. I left out all the planned ones- all those that just exist in my notebook and on a list somewhere. I only counted projects that had some sort of actual physical work started on them. Fabric only. Yarn related projects is a whole other ballgame. Price, Waterhouse, Cooper was not involved.

Active projects-

1. Baby Boy's Caterpillar Quilt

Moving right along. I finished all the machine quilting and safety pin removal this afternoon. All that is left is binding. Might be able to finish this one up this weekend.

2. Baby Boy's Blue Quilt

Only a few days into this project. No big rush, though. I would be nice to have it done before he is born but I'm not too concerned about it. Lots of episodes of Burn Notice, Psych and NCIS le…

The un-post post

So this is a blog post, but not really. I am determined to reach my blogging every day in January goal, but I really have nothing to blog about. Absolutely nothing. I could post morepictures of the new quilting project. But, really? Daily updates on hand-quilting- that would definitely be crazy quilt lady territory. Just about as exciting as watching paint dry. I spent a big (and extremely frustrating) chunk of the day at work- so no cute kid pictures or stories. I don't want to go into the frustrating part of work- it just upsets me. Yeah, there is just nothing to blog about. Maybe I'll just throw in some random links to make it seem like I actually blogged about something-

1. For the first time ever, I actually had read the Newbery award winner before it was the Newbery award winner. And absolutely loved it. And recommended it to everyone. I'm excited it won. Read it- it's great.

2. Have you seen my husband Brendan's writing blog? It's over in the sidebar in my…

Like a Hole in my Head

I know, I need a new project like I need.....yeah, I don't need a new project. But, this idea has been rattling around in my head for weeks. Ever since I saw this photo on Flickr. I just couldn't stop thinking about it and how I would sort of do the same thing but kind of not. I thought about it in the shower. I thought about it at work. I thought about while I was trying to go to sleep at night. I thought about it while working on other projects. Next thing I new, I had a definite plan as well as a full blown obsession. There was just no way I could not start this quilt. It had to be done. So, I bought my supplies- three yards of a beautiful solid blue and about fifteen different shades of DMC floss in blues, greens and greys.

Yesterday, I cut the three yards in half and sandwiched them together with batting in the middle.
Tonight, I started hand quilting.

Ok, the color is way off in this picture. That's what I get for trying to take pictures by lamplight late at night. The…


So, its not particularly comfortable in my delicate condition, but I spent the morning crawling around on the floor basting quilts. Baby Boy's Caterpillar quilt is now ready to start quilting.

And so is the new project. Just a peek currently- more details to come as I actually get started working on it.

I would have basted Anna's Caterpillar quilt as well but I ran out of pins. I might buy more pins tomorrow just so I can get it done before I get any larger.

TADA! again

Another finished Caterpillar quilt top.

It's late, though. So pictures with some actual sunlight and details on the quilt will have to wait until tomorrow. I may even throw in a sneak peek at my next planned project.

Once again, thanks to an adorable quilt holder.

Sunday in the Park with Handknit Hats

Today was sunny and relatively warm. What with weather and illness, the girls have been cooped up in the house way too much lately. So we grabbed our handknit hats and headed to playground.

The pattern for Brendan and I's hats can be found here.

Currently I am obsessed with this pattern. Not the knitting for hours on end kind of obsessed but the as soon as I finish one I start on another kind of obsessed. These are actually my third and fourth hats in row from the exact same pattern. I made my first for my SIL for Christmas. The second was a beautiful grey/blue/purple/red one for me that turned out way to big. My fault- I just assumed I had the right size needles rather than actually checking that I had the right size needles. I'm planning on reknitting it next. It's a fairly quick and simple knit. But, something about watching those colors gradually change from one stripe to the next is endlessly entertaining.

Oh, and Anna does have a handknit hat, I just couldn't find…

Giant Bed Bug Invasion

And in other cute kid news, today I was yelling at Anna to stop standing in her doll cradle before she broke it. She looks at me in all seriousness and asks, "Mom, are you going to call the Police to come and take me away?" Yeah, I have no idea where that one came from.


Yes, the quilt top is finished- all 39 square inches of it. I really like it. Definitely worth the tedium. The next steps are going to have to wait a little bit, though. I'm out of batting and my favorite batting will be on sale at JoAnn's next week. That will give me time to finish Anna's quilt top as well. It will be much less painful than this one was.

In other astounding news, my house is almost back to its semi-normal/semi-clean state. The kitchen and living room are all done. All the laundry is put away. My room is good. There's only a few more things left to put back in drawers in the bathroom. And the girls room is pretty much its normal mess. I might even get around to straightening it up tonight.

Many thanks to my cute little quilt holder.

As Predicted

There is no finished quilt top to show today. I'm still working on setting my house back in order and folding a whole lot of laundry. I do have a finished project to show, though. I actually made it a couple of days ago but gifted it today.

The library lost one of its longtime employees today to retirement. Fantastic for her. I'm not sure how the rest of us are going to get along without her though. She's been mom, best friend, grandma to a whole lot of patrons. She is my own daughters' library grandma and a beam of sunshine in my own work experiences. We're all going to miss her a whole lot. I asked what she would like me to make her as a retirement present- she requested jewelry.

I made her a bracelet and three pairs of earrings. The bracelet and matching earrings went on immediately- the best compliment a gift can receive. I wish I had a chance to get a picture of her wearing them. But, it was her retirement party- everyone wanted to talk to her.

Pretty Sucky Day

Yeah, sucky day pretty much says it all. Ellery woke up super early and super grumpy. I've been nauseous all day- probably thanks to the early wake up call. Anna's been whiny. And tomorrow our apartment is being exterminated- which means everything has to be moved out of the kitchen and bathroom. And we don't even have the bugs- our neighbors do but they're spraying the whole building. I would probably be grateful if it wasn't so much work with such bad timing.

So, instead of pictures of a finished quilt top, you get cute pictures of Ellery. I'm only an hour or so away from finishing the dang thing but its just not going to happen tonight. Maybe not even tomorrow. It promises to be just as sucky.

Tip #6

6- Start daydreaming about all the new projects you could start as soon as you finish piecing together these 169 stupid stupid squares.

Tip #5

#5- Work on something completely different for awhile.

Trina's Tips for Dealing with Mind-Numbing Tedium

Because no matter how much you love quilting, sewing together 169 3 inch squares is definately tedious.

1. Work in small batches. Sew for ten minutes, wander away and read for a while, sew for a half an hour or so, go play with the girls, sew, clean the kitchen. If you try and do it all at once, you'll go mad.

2. Put on a movie, but not too good of a movie. Something you have seen five million times but still like is optimal. Then it keeps you entertained but not completely distracted.

3. Audiobooks. I like ones that I've read before and enjoyed. That way I'm not completely lost if I miss a few sentences.

4. Hire a four year old to ask you every ten minutes if her quilt is finished yet.

I Must Be Crazy

Back in September, I had this-

A completely finished quilt top using the Very Hungry Caterpillar fabrics. The plan was to finish it up for Anna's birthday. There was one problem, I didn't really like it. For such vibrant, wonderful fabrics, it was just plain boring. Blah. I knew I could do better. So the quilt top languished on my crafty desk for months. Couldn't get excited about finishing it but couldn't let go of all the work I had already put into it.

This week, I decided enough was enough. I shook out the quilt top and got out my rotary cutter.

Sure, the first cut was hard. But, better a rotary cutter than a seam ripper! After a couple of days, this is what I have-

A whole lot of 2.5 inch squares destined for a quilt for the baby boy.

And a whole lot of scraps.

Don't worry, Anna is still getting a Caterpillar quilt. I still had plenty of uncut fabric left after making the quilt top that is no more. I cut out her quilt the past couple of days as well. Both are no…