Thursday, May 22, 2008

Happy Birthday to me!

I've been busy working on the star quilt for my DD2's friend and packing for our trip down south. DH and I are going on a second honeymoon to Key West!  Should be great.  Sadly DD's friend is now in the hospital and having surgery tomorrow.  They still aren't sure what is wrong with her but I'm praying that they find something soon that they can treat.  DD and I drove up to see her two nights ago.  She is an amazing, lovely person with such a strong will and a big heart.  She sent me flowers today from her hospital room for my birthday.  I pray that everything goes well for her and she starts to improve soon.

Above is a sacred heart postcard (sideways, sorry) that I sent to a swap partner on Craftster.  It was my first postcard and still my favorite.  I'm hoping to get involved in some groups that swap fiber postcards soon.

Piece everyone!  I'll be back in blogworld next week.  Jenni

Thursday, May 15, 2008

What happened to APRIL showers?!

Lots of rain lately.  Luckily it was nice on Tuesday for youngest DS's field day.  I got to run the long jump event for all the 3rd through 5th graders.  It was lots of fun for all.  

My quilt kit (see below) for the Lucky Stars quilt finally came yesterday.  The fabrics are gorgeous.  Gotta love Moda!  I had a few "to wash or not to wash" moments and decided to go ahead and pre-wash the fabrics since the fabrics are so bright and I was worried about bleeding.  Luckily my front loader is easy on fabrics and I used the handwash cycle with a color catcher sheet.  Nothing bled and they are all pressed and ready to go.  The pattern is really well written and should go together easily.  I hope to cut tonight and begin piecing as time allows.  Hubby and I are leaving for Key West soon so I need to get the house in order, laundry done and packing started.

I'm currently working on stencilling four shirts for youngest DS's basketball team.  There is a street ball three-on-three tournament (four on a team) coming up soon.  I have the design done and cut almost all of the fronts and backs out of freezer paper last night.  I had a tough time finding sleeveless shirts appropriate for the team that would fit everyone.  Three boys can wear men's sizes but one of the guys is small but mighty and needs a boy's size.  I finally went to a T and Top shop that does screen printing.  They had two of the shirts in stock and ordered the others for me.  I feel like I need to get these done before our trip so I don't have to go crazy when we get back.  I'll post a pic when I am finished.

Time to clean and then maybe sneak up to my sewing room.

I'll leave you with a tree quilt I did for a Craftster swap from a Carol Bryer Fallert pattern.  I need to make some more of these.  It was fun and not as tough as it looks.

Piece!  Jenni

Monday, May 12, 2008

What I've been up to lately . . .

Starting on Friday I sewed, sewed, sewed!  I am really loving my new Bernina

On Friday I finished my OC steps 2 and 3.  On Saturday I went to the shop where I bought my Bernina for a class to learn how to use my needle punch attachment.  I am really looking forward to playing with that some more!!  It is great for felting roving, yarn and wool fibers together.  I see some fun artsy creations in my future!

I worked Saturday evening, Sunday and this morning on Step 4 of the OC quilt and pleased to say I am DONE!  All caught up and ready to go.  I changed my original yardage choices though. The colors I originally planned were very bright, with a limey green, a bright pink and a very bright neon blue.  I decided they really clashed with the scraps I had chosen so I dug into the stash and decided to make a "blueberry crush".  The star colors I used, green and deep rose/burgandy blend with the scraps well.  Hopefully there is enough contrast.  My rose color is actually three fabrics.
Step 2

Step 3
Step 4 with all three fabrics (plus one to make it look good) 

I also took a picture of all the blocks (steps) waiting in their box with my other yardage.  We are readly for step 5!
I still haven't received my quilt kit I bought on ebay.  Even though I was notified on the 8th that it was shipped the post office tracking site says it shipped today.  I think I will try to get some spring cleaning done around the house before it gets here so I can have a few more crazy sewing days.

School days are coming to an end for the school year.  My youngest DS has "Field Day" tomorrow.  I will help the 4th and 5th graders with their events.  He will go to the middle school next year so it is my last elementary volunteering experience.  Kind of makes me feel a bit nostalgic!!  We had a meeting tonight for the "Football Mother's Club" for my other DS's high school team.  He will be a sophomore next year.  It takes a lot of behind the scenes work for these teams to do what they do, not to mention the tremendous commitment the players make.  I thought we'd have a summer break but they start June 2nd.  Football season here we come!

Enjoy your piecing everyone.  Summer's coming!  Jenni

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Still Stitchin'

I've slowly but surely been working away at step two of the Orange Crush Quilt. Hoping to finish sewing on the big triangles and start Step 3 tonight.
I took my MIL today to buy her Mother's Day flowers. We found a beautiful big planter of petunia's and verbana that she loves. I also planted some other flowers that she bought and some tomato plants for her. Hopefully all danger of frost has passed!
I ordered the quilt kit pictured below from ebay on Monday. It will be for my dd's friend (pictured in the red dress below). She may be hospitalized soon. As my mother's day treat to myself I am sewing ALL DAY on Friday, Saturday (when DH, DD1 and DS1 are biking), and hopefully Sunday, too. I'd really like to get it done for her ASAP. I hope I didn't bite off more than I can chew!! The pattern is called "Lucky Stars" by Atkinson Designs and the fabrics are Moda Botanicals. I just need to find a fun backing, although I could just hunt through my stash and piece one for her!! I may add a pieced heart and a big "A" which is the first letter of her name on the back. Time will tell!

Stay tuned. Idol tonight. Who will go home? I'm hoping Jason. Sorry Jason, can't stand the dreads. I must be too old.

More soon. Same Bat time, same Bat channel! Jenni

Monday, May 5, 2008

First project on my new bernina!

I made this chunky page for a book that alteredmommy, a swapping friend from craftster is making. It's 4 x 4 and the theme is "Hope". The back, which I forgot to photograph, has an appliqued butterfly and says "Hope is the dream of a soul awake". I hope it makes it to Canada in time for her to use it!! Check out her relay for life page. She's using the pages she receives to make a book to raffle off.

I am still getting used to the new machine and wondering if I should have gotten the Viking with all the embroidery instead. I'm dying to find out when the classes are but they aren't posted yet.

I had a great time in Athens, Ohio for Mom's weekend on Friday and had several wonderful adopted daughters and sons!! Prom on Saturday was lovely. My daughter looked gorgeous and a great time was had by all. The mother of one of her friends put on a fabulous dinner for four couples, which was nice for all involved. Here she in coral with another friend in the red dress that I altered. Gorgeous girls!!

I'm off to practice some more on Bernie. Piece out! Jenni

Friday, May 2, 2008

New Baby!

Not my picture but same machine!!

I'm a lucky girl!  Hubby wanted to get me something nice for my birthday (on the 22nd) so he offered to get me a new laptop.  Wow!  A computer of my own that I wouldn't have to share with him (the one in our bedroom) or the kids (in the family room).  I was really excited until I started thinking . . . do I really need one?!  I mean, if we're going to spend that much money, (we were looking at a Mac), I could get something I really want.

Then I quilted the star quilt below.  Now folks, I'm PROUD of that quilt.  First of all it's finished and in the momma's hands and the baby's not in grad school.  Second, I've been working on my quilting and free motion techniques and I've improved to the point that I'm not embarrassed to show it to others or give it away.  

Still . . .
I started dreaming about the Bernina BSR.  My machine is very nice, a Viking Lily 550 with quilting stitches and I have the plexiglass table and all that good stuff. But, that BSR would be dreamy, right?  So I mentioned it to hubby.  Now he's a biker (bicycle, not Harley) and we've had a new bike every year to every other year it seems.  All the kids and I have NICE bikes.  Most of them are TREK's.  He told me he wanted me to get something I really want.  It can be my anniversary gift, too.  (25 years in June!).

I tried out the new Viking Sapphire 870.  Nice, bigger bed, it was ok.  I almost got a Viking Quilt Designer II with all the embroidery stuff (I don't embroider at the moment) which would have been within $100 of the Bernina 440 QE without the embroidery module.  The thing I didn't like about the Sapphire was that I couldn't upgrade or "add" an embroidery module.

To make a long story short, I was sold after 5 minutes of sewing on the Bernina. The BSR is a dream.  Even though I didn't feel I could afford the embroidery package, I can add it later.  They were on sale and are supposedly going up in price as of May 1st because of the economy.  I bought one!
I pieced 110 triangles to squares for step two of the Orange Crush quilt and it was a dream.  I could tell the difference immediately.  I have a really busy weekend but I'm planning on holing up in the sewing room on Monday and playing all day.  

CHUNKY BOOK page for Craftster swap.  This is for my good buddy and former college roomie rackycoo.  It has a bunch of hidden meaning from our college days and the theme of the swap is "The creative life".

I'm off to visit my oldest dd at Ohio University for Mom's weekend and then we are coming back tomorrow for second dd's prom.  Big weekend = no sewing until Monday.  I'm sure I'll dream up several projects that I HAVE to do by then.

Piecefully, Jenni