Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Freefall QAL Winners

Again, I can't thank everyone enough for participating and finishing your quilts, be they tops or done and dusted! Thank you to those who started the QAL, but life got in the way; when you finish your top or quilt please do send me a photo as I'd love to see it.

First prize was the fat quarter stack of Freefall fabrics, the very same ones I used for my Freefall quilt, from Paintbrush Studio. It goes to


Next we had a few gift certificates.
This goes to Kathleen, on Flickr:

$25 gift certificate to Fat Quarter Shop

6 fat quarters of 3 half-yard cuts from Needle and Foot Fine Fabrics

A copy of Crafted Appliqué by Lara Bucella of Buzzin Bumble
Julie of Pink Doxies


2 winners get 2 patterns from Meadow Mist Designs
I was so touched that she'd done a quilt in a tree shot, and such a special tree, her husband's dad's memorial tree, a Weeping Pear.

Had to include the second photo so you can see the beautiful batiks she used
and

2 patterns from Quilting Jet Girl
Kathleen at Kathleen McMusing



A pattern from Canuck Quilter Designs and one from Stitchin At Home

A pattern from Cooking Up Quilts and one from me, mmm! quilts


Laura on Instagram also finished her quilt top, but confessed she didn't know how to link up, so here is her quilt.  I have sent her a copy of both mine and Tish's patterns.

I will be in touch with the winners.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Windblown Cushion Cover

This little gem of a cushion or pillow cover was on my Q1 FAL list.  Oh well, the point is it's done, right? And I just love it! So summery.

I had plans to drive to my beloved Lakeside Park to do the photo shoot, but then I thought hmm, maybe there's a spot in our yard, rounded the back of the deck and spied this!  Like you'd think I had totally planned it, down to putting the begonia there.  Nope.  But I'll take it!

You saw the flimsy in my previous post.  This cushion is based on my Freefall and Windfall quilt pattern, but uses only four blocks of the half and half kind. There were a few choices I had to arrange the four...


It was hard to decide!  In the end I thought floating them on a large pinwheel would add to the twirling effect. I got the top together, complete with mitred corners, and called it a night.  Went upstairs the next morning to layer it and figure out a quilting plan...
Someone had laid claim to it! The cheek! If you look closely at the upper left corner by the migrating geese strips, you will see her very own perch, one of several, I might add, by a window, complete with her very own handmade by yours truly, cushion. She likes the new stuff.  Without fail.

Some of the quilting plan came to me no problem:
Loving the sheen of the Sulky white rayon.

The lines in the white areas in opposite directions I thought would look kind of cool.  Then I did flowing lines on the diagonal in the leaves themselves.  Finally the turquoise sections...hmmm. I was stumped for a bit, so I pulled out my trusty plexiglass and dry erase markers, brilliant idea of my friend Tish, and drew out a couple of thoughts:
What? No feathers? Maybe dot to dot then...meh...the continuous curve appealed to me.

Found some matching rayon thread by Gütermann, and off I went, just eye-balling the curves.  I went with three straight lines centred in the borders, and called it a night.
Managed to capture a quick shot of the back as the sun was setting.

Just as I was dropping off to sleep, zing! Into my head popped the idea, (but of course, Sandra!) of doing a flanged binding. Yes! So I did.
Perfect choice!
Here is the back, an envelope style, but I don't double the fabric layers.  I wouldn't have had enough fabric anyhow, ha!


I remembered to sew on my mmm! quilts label from Ikaprint AS I was sewing on the binding:

When I stitched down the flange, I used the turquoise rayon on the top.  I am not a fan of the line of stitching you get on the back when doing binding this way, although I sure am a fan of the look and the speed. I thought the white cotton Gütermann would show more on the back...what are the chances I'd have a salmon/rose colour to put in the bobbin... Chances were great! I stocked up on quite a variety of colours of Essential thread at one of Connecting Threads' sales. That is an affiliate link, so it is also my duty to let you know that clicking it will take you to the thread sale currently on (25% off so that means US$2.09 for a 1200 yard spool of 100% cotton, terrific thread) and I might mention that all their batting is 30% off as well. That's when I usually pick up a few packages of Hobbs, the brand they carry. Anyhow, threads:

You actually do get a bit of an idea of the sheen the rayon threads give in that photo.

In retrospect, I think a circle quilting motif would have been better for the spinning effect.  That thought struck me this morning when I went to do the binding, and I saw the finished cover sitting on my sewing table.  Maybe there's another one of these in my future!

Quilt Stats:
Pattern:  Windblown, original design
Size:  after quilting 18.25"
Fabric: Recollection by Katarina Rocella (how I love her work) for Art Gallery Fabrics, Stof Fabrics in turquoise, Kona Snow
Batting: Warm n Natural
Quilted: on my Bernina
Threads:  pieced with Gütermann; quilted with Sulky rayon, Gütermann rayon

Once I release the pattern, which will hopefully be in July, I will include instructions for making this pillow as well as both sizes of quilts.  If you haven't seen all the beautiful renditions of Freefall, go back one post or click here, and follow the links to gorgeous takes on my design!  If you fell behind in the QAL, you have until Sunday afternoon, 4 pm EST to link up your flimsy or your finished quilt to be eligible for some pretty sweet prizes. And if this is the first time seeing my Freefall pattern, all the steps to make the quilt are in the Freefall tab up top, and all the steps are available as free PDFs in my Craftsy store. 😊

Speaking of Sunday, and Craftsy, all things sweet, Craftsy is having a Supplies Sale from now until Sunday.  This is when I have scored some pretty sweet deals on kits and on fabric and yarns.  As always, thank you so much if you click through on my links to either Craftsy or Connecting Threads.

Linking up
Crazy Mom Quilts
TGIFF at Cut & Alter
Busy Hands Quilts

Thursday, June 15, 2017

The Birthday of a Famous Canadian

Today is the birthday of my father, Cliff, who would have been 91, were he still alive. I miss him so much still, things I know he'd love, things I know he'd find hilarious, things I wish I could share with him. The Freefall Quilt Along was an idea germinated last Fall when I participated in a blog hop for Paintbrush Studio, organized by Bernie of Needle and Foot.  I made Windfall using the gorgeous collection of that same name.  This quilt is, to paraphrase Yvonne of Quilting Jet Girl, a quintessential Canadian quilt, perfect and timely for Canada's sesquicentennial, 150th birthday on July 1, 2017, although I didn't plan it to be all this at the time.

Taken in my home town of Kingsville, Ontario, Fall 2016, 50.5" square

I knew I wanted to release this quilt as a pattern, but I also wanted to challenge myself in my blogging life by running a quilt along, so using this as the pattern, but in a smaller size, seemed appropriate.  I approached Paintbrush Studio about my idea, making the swirling leaves on a large shadow leaf a spring themed quilt.  Thus, they became the main sponsors, and thus, I created Freefall, using the collection by that same name!  Man I do love synchronicity, more so when it is orchestrated by powers beyond moi. 😍😁
Taken in North Port, Florida, Spring 2017, 37.5" square

When setting out the timeline for this QAL, I wanted it to be a bit slower (and do-able) of a pace.  I had to bump this further ahead in the calendar year when I had to make Coins of the Atocha for Benartex's Modern By the Yard magazine, or e-zine.  Then, I decided why not allow a little extra time, as in 4 weeks from the flimsy finish, which was May 15, to get the quilts quilted? And lo and behold, that meant that this parade would be June 15...my dad's birthday. As I mentioned way back in the beginning of this quilt along journey, Dad always used to write on our wall calendar, shortly after my mum would put up the new one in January, "Birthday of a Famous Canadian" on his day. We kids all loved it.  He'd wink; Mum would roll her eyes with a half-grin. So the final parade of quilts of this Maple Leaf pattern, symbolic of Canada, is happening on a most auspicious date for me. 😍

I think everyone knows how dead chuffed (to quote my English mum) I am about the participation in this, my first QAL. I have gotten goosebumps at seeing such a variety of lush fabrics used for my design, in Fall themes, Spring themes, bright and happy themes.  I myself created another smaller yet version of my pattern, a cushion cover, aka pillow cover. See below. I plan to release the pattern in short order, and it will contain instructions for both quilts and the cushion cover.

Note: if you are visiting here for the first time, or have not heard of the Freefall Quilt Along that ran from March to June, click on the Freefall tab at the top of my blog where you will find all the posts with instructions.  Of course, each step is in my Craftsy Store, as a free PDF download. They will be there forever. 😁 That is an affiliate link; as an affiliate I feel it is my duty to tell you of their Supplies Event on now and through the weekend...you can score some sweet kits and yardage and yarns, and tools, and threads...



This measures 18.5".  You can set the falling leaves in a few different ways, because of the 'shadow' HSTs behind them. It was a bit difficult settling on the final layout!

So...drum roll....

Let's see!! I cannot wait to see how these have all come together, quilted or flimsy.  I will leave the linkup open until Sunday so you've got a couple of extra days to get 'er done and I will draw for prizes on Sunday evening.

Just what are those lovely prizes again?
1.  A fat quarter stack of Freefall fabrics from Paintbrush Studio
2.  A $25 gift certificate to Sew Sisters Quilt Shop
3.  A $25 gift certificate to Fat Quarter Shop
4.  6 fat quarters or 3 half-yard cuts of fabric from Needle & Foot Fine Fabrics
5.  A copy of Crafted Appliqué by Lara Buccella of Buzzin' Bumble
6.  Two patterns to two winners from Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs (Magnolia Mystery is beginning! Eeep! That link will take you there.)
7.  Two patterns from Yvonne at Quilting Jet Girl.
8.  A pattern from Lorna at Sew Fresh Quilts.
9.  A pattern from Joanne at Canuck Quilter.
10.  A pattern from Beth at Cooking Up Quilts.
11.  A pattern from Tish at Tish's Adventures in Wonderland.
12  A pattern from Cindy at Stitchin' At Home.
13.  A pattern from moi.

Heartfelt thanks to each one of these sponsors who so generously offered prizes for my first quilt along.  Heartfelt thanks to each of those who participated, fitting this in amongst various other obligations and projects and life in general.  Heartfelt thanks to Tish and to Julie for offering to test the pattern. It would not have been as straightforward without their valued input.  Also heartfelt thanks to Jen for testing the instructions of the large leaf shadow point blocks.

Wow!  All right, let's get this show on the road!







Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Blue Skies Story

Remember Blue Skies? My first 'for sale' pattern?  Well she has another 'first' under her belt...
She's been sold! My first sale in my Etsy shop. I could say, "Wow! 50% of my stock has just been sold in my Etsy shop!" Which is entirely true.  See how one can manipulate stats? Yeah, I have only had two items in it for the past year, grin, and ahem...I need to amend that, I know.  Or should I say, I need to augment that?!  It'll happen.  Just like my sewing room, just like our kitchen (eep! It's so exciting, picked out the granite today! The only part that someone other than my MacGyver has to do.)

There is a most wonderful story with the sale of this little quilt, so sit back and let me tell it to you.  It began with an email.  The people were enquiring about the quilt, and wanted to know if I could embroider a design on it.  They were planning on giving it as a baby quilt, destined for a baby boy. I said yes, and sent them a sample of some of my FMQ embroidery work.  They sent me this graphic, and over the next several days we talked and I stitched:
The middle image is the test I sent them with various golds and blues, all Sulky rayons in 40 and 30 weight, so they could choose the colours. My Bernina loves Sulky rayons, as do I.

I am no artist, meaning I can't draw images out of my head.  However, I am a fairly decent copyist! For this, I also made a sort of stencil out of paper for getting some of the lines and proportions correct. You can see I used a blue line marker to sketch the lines. I quadruple FMQ-ed with a straight stitch the outlines, giving it the look of hand embroidery. Here is the finished graphic:


Why the angels embroidery? Well, the mother of the baby boy that this quilt is going to lost both her own parents when they were very young, so the purchasers wanted the guardian angels as a symbol of her parents watching over their grandson.  That tugged at my heart!  I wasn't sure about embroidering onto a quilt that was already quilted, but I did some test samples, and got their approval. Once I saw the finished embroidery, it struck me that the angels appear to be in clouds, formed by the poofiness of the feathers.


Amazingly, the lovely people who bought the quilt live in Ontario, my province! They were an absolute pleasure to work with.
I love that this graphic looks good on the front and on the back in its mirror image.

This quilt has an international connection, that is, between Canada and the United States: it will be travelling with the clients next month to California, home of the mother and baby boy to whom it will be given. I just love thinking of the wee baby who will be wrapped in his blue skies quilt, wrapped in love from his family, both here and in heaven.


In other blue news, "Cuh' Boss!" is on the frame!! It just so happened that with securing the 3 layers together and then stitching in the ditch, I ended up in the top right corner where the blue cow is! She was the very first cow I pieced; how fitting that she is the first to be quilted.  Did I mention how much I love the colour blue? 💙


And, in a little Canadian news (see what I've done here?! Love love when a post that seems like a schnozzle comes out a delicious, choreographed scrap quilt), I got almost 'only 3 blocks behind' in the 150 Canadian Women QAL (which is featured in Quilter's Connection magazine!) but that was yesterday, a Tuesday, the day of the week when Kat releases three more blocks, so I was 6 blocks behind, now 5 as I made one this morning!
Clockwise from top: Blocks 85-87
85 - Elizabeth Smellie: awarded the Royal Red Cross for her exceptional service in military nursing during WWI, in 1923 was appointed superintendent of the Canadian Victorian Order of Nurses (VON); she also worked for the World Health Organization (WHO); served in WWII as matron-in-chief of the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps, and was promoted to colonel.

86 - Ethel Stark: She has so many firsts: brilliant violinist, superb pianist, she was the first Canadian to win a fellowship at the Philadelphia Curtis Institute, only woman to sign up for conducting classes; first Canadian woman soloist on a programme broadcast across the US; founded the New York Women's Chamber Orchestra, founded the Montreal Women's Symphony Orchestra; in 1947 that orchestra was the first Canadian orchestra to play at the New Carnegie Hall; first Canadian woman to gain international recognition as a conductor. I have been saving this red/ivory music fat quarter for important female musicians--sure hope kd lang will be one of the future women.

87 - Kenojuak Ashevak: Inuit artist; her art (an icon) The Enchanted Owl, is on the commemorative $10 bill which was just released June 1! I love how many connections to Canada's birthday Kat has inadvertently (I think) done through her 150 incredible women project. There is a holographic image on that bill, the stained glass in our Parliament Buildings in Ottawa, so cool, and the prominent image of another Canadian in Kat's project, Agnes MacPhail. Anyhow, look closely at my block, the one on the bottom left.  I knew I had some Aboriginal Canadian art fabric, left over from a quilt I made for my niece several years ago.  I was so pleasantly surprised when I saw there was an owl image on it! It's brown, white and a bit of burgundy, but I had to include it, along with birch trees in winter, and snowflake white fabric.
(info paraphrased as always from Kat's PDF files)

Hope you will be back tomorrow for a most momentous occasion!  The final reveal and parade of Freefall quilts from my Freefall Quilt Along. There are some fabulous prizes to be had, and remember flimsies are fine! I've already seen some finishes...WOW!

Linking up
Sew Fresh Quilts for Let's Bee Social

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Green Geese

I am behind in just about everything in my life these days, including an unplanned hiatus from Ashtanga yoga, but I keep plodding along. Here is the green row, May's colour, for my Migrating Geese, project #2, in the RSC 2017 at soscrappy.
Man! That would've been such a good lead-off photo for a May RSC post!

Little has been done on any of my RSC projects, of which there are three, but for a few green blocks on the "X Marks the Block" project, which is #3.  This particular project my friend Nancy in Florida spied on Pinterest, as a fun quilt to do together as a long-distance quilt-along.  I did put a yellow corner on one of the green blocks:
I remarked that I may have got myself into a bit of a Rubic's Cube dilemma with opposing corners in various colours. Might be time to sit down with the sketch book and do a little planning? Ya think?

I pulled out a bunch of my yellow larger scraps to begin cutting for the yellow migrating geese row.
Two RSC projects being cut for, the geese and a few yellow strings
I have realized, in this past 2 months of crazy, that having stuff prepped ahead of time means I will accomplish more by basically doing these projects as leader/ender projects.  This is something I knew and possibly verbalized silently (ha oxymoron there) to myself, but it is so true.  Now, finding the time to actually plan and cut ahead, is key.  However, now that things up here are actually starting to have some semblance of order and organization, that is becoming more of a reality.

Here is my temporary design wall! 😆 A tablecloth from the dollar store (which works wonderfully btw) suspended from the highest point of the ceiling (7') by two nails and a pin.  Can be weighted down with a dowel and rolled up and clipped to those nails! A MacGyver invention, of course.
Green row in progress
Ioleen from Instagram suggested I use velcro strips, one on the ceiling, the other on the tablecloth to attach it. Great idea! Here you get a peek at the longarm, the Singer 15-91 desk that is doubling as my computer desk, and one of the kitchen cabinets now being used as fabric storage. I moved the shoe rack under one of the eaves sections. You can just see it to the right of the tablecloth.

I did buy two sheets of 2X8' half inch styrofoam but they are too tall for the ceiling up here! For now one is on its side under the back of the longarm, and the other is in our bedroom. I plan to get another two so I have an 8x8' design wall as I used to have, covered with my beloved gridded flannel.  It's going to have to be folded/hinged somehow and I know there are tutorials to do this online, plus I have my beloved husband to mastermind something that I often tweak a bit to serve my needs. We're a pretty good team.😉 I'm okay with a design wall in our bedroom; I can contemplate stuff while ... okay never mind, where my thoughts went is not what I'd originally intended to write! LOL Yesterday while iMessaging a dear friend in Alberta and telling her a bit about the kitchen reno, in which convo I said, "I have a great contractor; I sleep with him too!" and she responded, "Sassy Sandra!" well, there you go, guess I am. Grin. (I can hear both my daughters going, "Disgusting.") Ha! I was originally envisioning having a design wall in my bedroom and waking up with the sun, being unable to resist playing around with fabric, much to MacGyver's annoyance since he is so not a morning person.
Back to the migrating geese! Here they are suspended from the crabapple tree, against what will reveal itself to be either wisteria or trumpet vine once that all flowers.  Apparently both are there, climbing on, and most effectively disguising, the chain link fence. Love the way this quilt is progressing, and can't wait to get that yellow row up next.

Linking up
soscrappy
Quilting is More Fun Than Housework

Friday, June 9, 2017

Singer Featherweight Love #1

This is the first in an installment of five, maybe more, posts on vintage Singer sewing machines.  You may recall from this post that in finally actively pursuing my long-held desire to own a Featherweight after seeing Paula Nadelstern's in her tiny NYC apartment, that I inadvertently am now the owner of 4 more vintage Singer machines. I already was the proud, albeit a bit ashamed owner (I still haven't taken the time to get her up and running) of my grandma's treadle machine.
Here you see the three of the four gals that now belong to me, in various stages of their spa treatments.

I have long wanted a Featherweight, but, like my eldest then 18-year-old daughter, who said, "Nuh-uh I am not going to post-secondary schooling.  Ever," and expected the workforce headhunters to come knocking on our door begging her to work full-time for them, I kind of thought a Featherweight would come to me.

Note two things: 1. that said daughter has held down a job since shortly after that first few months, multiple jobs at a time, and currently has an excellent position despite the drastic swing in the oil patch economy of Alberta (where her main job is).  So advice to those anxious mums of 18-year-olds who announce similar obstinate plans, don't fret; let her figure out her own way.  And her way might be pretty damn fabulous.

2. that said Featherweight, well one of the two, ha, did kind of knock on my door.  And it is pretty damn fabulous.

Introducing. . .
I've since learned that you get a better stitch (and I dunno but it was pretty darn perfect here) using a thread guide since the machines were not designed to work with today's cross-wound spools like this Gütermann.)
Mathilda
aka Tillie for short. 😉 I got her on that trip to Tillsonburg (get the significance of her name now?) at the end of April.  When I couldn't get a response from Featherweight #1, which was for sale locally at a great price, I decided to look around the London area, and that was when this particular one seemed interesting, and the lady selling it responded very quickly.  What to do, what to do... Well, as you know from the Minestrone post, MacGyver and I spent a lovely day driving up to Tillsonburg and meeting up with Cindy and her husband.  And also buying this machine, despite having in the meantime made arrangements to take a look at #1.

The story is that a sweet man named Jim acquired a few of these, so I had to choose from two... and had pretty much made up my mind when he brought out a third, and then... he showed me one that his wife said she wasn't allowed to use (not sure if she was serious or joking), a 222 free arm!! Nope it wasn't for sale and nope, I had no hope of leaving my name for the day they decided they no longer wanted it; their daughter would get it one day. 😔

As you can see, she's pretty shiny. Jim had her cleaned up pretty good, but I found some terrific sites and YouTube channels that helped me give her a total spa treatment.

This is one. I especially appreciated the clear photos of orange-painted spots to oil.  The manual does not have the greatest of diagrams!
The Singer Featherweight Shop Blog

I also appreciated having a MacGyver for a husband who helped me along the way.  He's such a gearhead and, I think, was more excited than I was when opening Mathilda up and seeing her gears, and then greasing them. He applied grease while I slowly hand-cranked so it evenly coated everything.  I would have had no idea how much to put on or exactly how to do it!  He it was who went first to his 'tickle trunk' and got me some silver wadding polish, 'Nevr-Dull' which he uses on the chrome on old cars, along with a soft microfibre cloth, which is just peeking into the photo on the right side.

He then hopped in the SUV and went and got me the white lithium grease for the gears, and Silvo for more work on the faceplates (remember I was giving 3 girls their spa day).  The 'Nevr-Dull' is a cotton wool product that really worked well to remove any tarnish and grime remaining on the faceplate.  I must admit that it is pretty gratifying, and a self-esteem boost for me to be doing mechanical care of this nature!  I am very particular about regularly cleaning and oiling of my Bernina and Elna, but this is a bit more involved.

Lara of Buzzin' Bumble sent me excellent information a while back when I'd talked to her about getting my grandma's treadle up and running.  She spoke highly of Nova Montgomery and her products and advice.  I cleaned both Featherweights' bobbin cases according to Nova's advice I found on her YouTube video: by soaking them in kerosene! I also got my plastic wire brush and removed the throat plate, which Jim had had laser-etched with a seam guide, brushed her out in there and on the feed dogs, and then flipped her on her back (gently, of course), undid the nut and removed the bottom plate and cardboard, and gave her a brushing in her innards (sounds a bit rude doesn't it?! Just think of it as giving her a Brazilian LOL), put her back together and brushed out the bobbin area too.  It was amazing how much more lint I removed, but that's the nature of the cotton threads and cotton fabric we sew with.  Judging by the 3 half-full bobbins that came with Mathilda, Jim's wife had been sewing on her a fair bit!  Which is terrific.  These machines need to be used!  Here is a little video of Mathilda and I working on the 'Welcome to Canada' quilt:

Doesn't she just purr?

I am undecided as to whether or not to purchase a 1/4" foot for the Featherweight; I do have the guide but it seems a tad healthy of a 1/4" and I prefer a scant one, especially as I like to press my seams to the side.

Mathilda came with her original case, inside of which were lots of goodies:
It's in excellent shape, and came with not one but two keys, and a buttonholer. Yep you can use it with a Featherweight; see this link.

Inside the case of the other Featherweight that Jim and his wife had was this vintage tube of motor grease! He let me have it, but don't worry; I won't be actually using it as grease of that age is no longer any good.  
Do you spy a walking foot?? From 1951?! Suh-weet! I thought, but upon Googling this with its part number, I discovered it is a blind stitch attachment.  I might give it a try for quilting regardless.

I tried to get the light to shine on the beautiful patterned liner inside the case.  I think you get the idea.


As I learn and discover more about the care, use and maintenance of these lovely vintage machines, I will let you know.  There is a wealth of online information out there.  I have started a Vintage Singer Sewing Machines page where I will link to my Singer posts as well as list useful sources of information. I haven't published it yet, hoping to get a little more information on it. Maybe this weekend.

Yet another fascinating thing has happened both through my blog, as well as through teaching yoga which makes me so deeply happy.  One of my yoga students told me that she has recently taken up quilting.  She noticed my small quilts I use as sit-upons, my yoga mat bag, and the various quilted totes I use to cart my stuff around to class. She's a little bit older than me, so see? We are never too old to learn new things, improve ourselves both physically and mentally.  We got to talking after yoga one day, and exchanged emails.  She went on my blog.  Well, she read it in its entirety!  And then sent me such a lovely heartfelt email about it.  And then she sent me a second email--!

This is her girlie!  After reading about my ownership of now five vintage Singers, she told me she had inherited her MIL's 1948 Featherweight, and she sent me these photos!  She thinks she will call her Mary after her MIL. 😀  She's needing to give Mary a little spa treatment too, with help from her husband (I'm finding guys really love these little gems) and is super-excited to get her up and running. Thanks so much Connie, for letting me show off your girl here, as well as for reading this blog and just being a quilty yogi, good-hearted kind person to share all this with me.  I need to dwell on these joyful occurrences and not ever let any nasty occurrences affect the writing of, and the sharing of photos of my life here in our new home.  Generally, QBL and quilters especially are such kind generous souls; I've said it time and again, seen it, lived it. Dwell on all the goodness brought to me with this blog, right? Right!

Linking up
Confessions of a Fabric Addict
Busy Hands Quilts


Thursday, June 8, 2017

I Like/Love #5

1. I like rhododendrons, especially when they are mine!

This beauty came with the house, and she's pretty big:
She may need a little tender care, as she's been a bit neglected over the past five years methinks. The front garden on either side of our step is really nicely, obviously professionally, landscaped. MacGyver's shaped and fussed with it a bit, as have I, adding the impatiens on either side of the steps too, as well as one of our beloved rhodos we brought from our previous house.  The rhodos all three flowered at different times...different species maybe? Or is it because our two were in a bit of shock from the move? Regardless, I've loved having them all blooming at various times over the past month.

2. I love the fragrance of many flowers.  Here are more flowers that came with the house.  I correctly identified two of them, had one confirmed by Julie of Pink Doxies, the other by wikipedia.
The first is this Mock Orange that smells heavenly.  I like discovering fabulous plants in this yard and thinking about the lady, Mrs. Murray, who planted them many years ago.


3.  Here is another she clearly planted amongst the lilacs.  Pink Cloud Beauty Bush, aka Kolkwitzia amabilis has recently shown herself beneath the towering (and long-finished) lilacs. It's a lovely 'Pink Things' squares icing colour. (I should find that old recipe for those squares--yum! We never did get or remember a name, and so 'Pink Things' they became.)

We have plans to move each of these once we develop our yard and gardens.

4. I like having a husband who is a MacGyver, a builder, a gardener, a designer; there is nothing he can't do.  He's finished stage 1 of the deck remodel, and I love it so far.

The post from Mrs. Murray's clothesline serves as a basket of flowers holder for a few more days until he gets some brackets to hang it off the house. He doesn't like it, says it's tacky, but I'm okay with it as a plant/hummingbird/oriole feeder... I like having a private sunny deck where I can enjoy morning coffee and lunch and afternoon tea.

5. I like that both hummingbirds and orioles have been coming to that feeder.
This was snapped May 2 .  Notice the not-so-pretty deck rail? Un-powerwashed white wood?
6. I like text messages I get from Brianne about funny conversations with Brady. I needed this one this afternoon:


7. I like, no I love, the deep friendships I have formed through writing this blog, and where it has taken me as a quilter and as a person. You've heard that time and again from me, and time and again from other bloggers, and, if you are a blogger yourself, you've experienced it. It brings our world together, something we desperately need in these crazy times.  This year I've made a very very good friend in a blogger who isn't even a quilter! Not a member of QBL!! Gasp!  Helen of Word Weaver Art is a talented artist, retired for a little over a week teacher, and a kindred spirit, who I plan to meet one day.  She loves my cows blocks and the quilt; if you scan through her blog you will find some wonderful paintings she's done of cows...

8. I like quilting with friends around the globe! Making connections.  My Freefall QAL is quickly coming to a close. I have quilters from Canada, to the USA, to Ireland, to New Zealand quilting along!
It's such a charge to see a quilt I designed made by someone else, thousands of miles away. This is Yvonne's finished quilt which I missed 😟 when she posted about it. You can read her post and see more fun photos of it here.
And...as things do happen, there's a group of us planning to do another quilt-along, not my pattern this time, but Postcard from Sweden, (affiliate link) free off Craftsy.  Something Helen of Midget Gem Quilts said on her blog about it, I commented, and now off we go.  We are thinking of starting this in August, so you've got plenty of time to get some fabric together. More details forthcoming.

9. I am still liking (an awful lot) the 150 Canadian Women QAL project.  I am still behind.  However here are the latest ones since I last showed you. Good heavens! I went back...and back...and back! I haven't shown you any on the blog since the last 'I Like/Love' post on May 18! Which were #74-75.

Here is the latest group, Blocks 82-84:
From lower left, anti-clockwise: 82-Claudia Joan Alexander; 83-Jeannette Foster Kennedy Butchart, who knew a WOMAN founded THE Butchart Gardens in Victoria BC with a Japanese lady's help; 84-Pitseolak Ashoona
This lady tugged at my very core:
What an unusual block for me to construct, asymmetrical in its quadrants. Claudia was an engineer who loved science, earning her Masters in geophysics and space physics. She studied plate tectonics, moved to NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab, was project manager of the Galileo Mission, received her PhD in the Physics of Space Plasma and was Woman of the Year.  She also worked on comets, and was project manager and scientist of NASA's role in European Space Agency's to study comet 67P/Churyumov/Gerasimenkl when she died.  When she died.  I did a double-take. Wait, I thought I saw she was only a year older than I...yep born in 1959.  So I Googled her. She fought a 10-year battle with breast cancer, succumbing in 2015.  I don't know exactly why it affected me so profoundly but it did; I cried.  So in her block you see the pink hearts, fabric I bought at Alma Sue's Quilt Shop which they used for a Quilt for the Cure project for Breast Cancer Month (May) last year, and the black with red dots batik to symbolize her work in space physics.  Such a great mind.  Such a loss for us.

So, here are 76-78. I won't go into detail for these ladies, much as I'd like to.
76-Marie Marguerite d'Youville-founder of Grey Nuns; 77-Thanadelthur (a bit of Native American fabric for her); 78-Georgina Fane Pope
Blocks 79-81
79-Helen Galloway McNicoll (Google her! Her paintings--!!; 80-Carrie Matilda Derick. I gave her two butterflies in her block because she earned her PhD in Botany, attending Harvard and universities in Munich, London, Berlin and Bonn but it wasn't recognized because she was a woman; 81-Florence Amelia Deeks (HG Wells pretty clearly ripped her off for her 4 years' work manuscript on the history of the world...)

10. I like strong women. Some fought quietly for change, for recognition; others fought loudly and belligerently.

They all fought bravely.  To be equals and worthy of every bit of their being.

I would like to fight loudly for some causes, (for pibbles to be seen as just dogs, for Ontario to rescind the ban, for stopping all the bombing in the world, for the oceans, for using less plastic! Take your own cup to Tim Horton's, Starbucks, etc! for human beings to be seen as human beings...) But I will fight quietly, knowing that every positive I do, and that we all do, in our own way, makes a difference!

Linking up with LeeAnna at Not Afraid of Color