Christmas Cardinals - Finished!

That's right, I finished a Christmas present. IN NOVEMBER. #winning

Of course, the logical thing would be to wait for a snowy day to take pictures of it, but...frigidly freezing and breezy will have to do.

This quilt is nothing fancy - just three charm packs of Winter Elegance from last year. My step-mother-in-law is a big cardinal fan, so I thought I'd add to her collection. I made a few stars within the simple blocks, but I think they're way too subtle amongst the busy prints. Oh well. They'll be a secret surprise to whomever notices them.

I like the inclusion of the cream-with-red-dots stop border, and the red-with-cream-dots binding. I'm still machine stitching the binding to both sides, and I think I've perfected the technique.

The quilting is simple all-over swirls - effective for a good texture, but doesn't add or take away from the busy quilt.

The backing is a snowflake from Joann's - chosen to be winter-y but not Christmas-y, since there's nothing about the quilt that says it has to be put away on Dec. 26.

And you can see a bit of my "d'oh!" moment - I load the quilt on sideways and ended up having to stop with 12" to go on the quilting. Cut a chunk off the side, re-pieced it together, and finished up another day. Luckily busy print = hard to see the oops. And now I definitely mark which end is up before I go long-arming!

Measures 57x66"

I have to say, between this and Taffy, I'm really enjoying the addition of black in the Christmas/winter collections.



This week was Vacation Bible School at our church, so I got a little less sewing time, but a lot more craft time. Somehow every time we find a new church, they automatically put me in the craft room for VBS. Weird. ;)

This is the pile of crafts the kids brought home. I'm most excited about the Jesus sign - we had one in our house growing up, and now I have my own! I mean, the Dude has his. I guess. Technically.

In the afternoon, I tried to stick with making five blocks a day for the flannel stars. I failed by the end of the week, but with a final push on Saturday, I got them finished and laid out with the pillowcases and jeans. All the columns are stitched together now; I just need to put it all together.

I also finished the inside patchwork for Cardinal Charms. Unfortunately, the consensus is my friends hate me don't think I should be lazy, and it really needs a stop border before the blue cardinals. I'm hoping I have enough leftover of the cream with red dots from the above quilt.

I made some awesome candy cane stripe binding and attached it to the front of Christmas Stars. Now I just need to get some hand stitching time.

I finally pulled a couple more Weekly Churn Dashes together. A couple darker greens this week, since I did bright greens during dark green month.

And my new leader/ender project - California Girl Hourglasses. I just have to say, it is great to have a L/E project that I love, because it makes me want to work on my other projects to add blocks!

Also, everyone say "Hi, CC!"

On Sunday evening, I had finished all my weekly projects, and it wasn't quite time to start dinner. I didn't want to drag out a big project, and clearly I wasn't going to clean anything, so I started playing with the leftover corners from Wee Wander.

But then the girls ended up in the same place on opposite sides, looking like the creepy twins from The Shining, and the boy is really a faceless body catching fireflies, and maybe they're not catching fireflies but SOULS. And now something so very sweet is kinda creepy.

On another note...the color palette of the week...purple! I know Jennie's a big fan of Frozen, so I counter with the much better recent princess movie.

BOMs Away Monday @ What A Hoot
Design Wall Monday @ Patchwork Times
Color Mondays @ Porch Swing Quilts
Linky Tuesday @ Freemotion by the River
WiP Wednesday @ Freshly Pieced
Rainbow Scrap Challenge @ SoScrappy
Slow Sunday Stitching @ Kathy's Quilts
Fabric Frenzy Friday @ Fort Worth Fabric

June - The Roller Coaster Month

June has been an interesting month - lots of ups and downs.

My husband was supposed to go on a short trip, but ended up shredding an engine and being stuck in Guam for nearly two weeks. {He had three other engines to land with. Clearly this was not an emergency. I like denial.}

Since this was a mere 20 days after getting home with the Little Man, I was going slightly insane by mid-month. Not to mention, no "babysitter" = no long arm rental time = delay in finishing a customer quilt.

But woo - the up! A customer quilt!

A running t-shirt quilt - and I think I did a fabulous job. ;) {My AYOLF goal.}

I also ventured cautiously into the world of branding and hired a designer to do my logo. I'm slowly working toward understanding my Facebook page and blog as a business. Don't worry - it'll take all summer.

I also finished a t-shirt quilt for Lori - just a sneak peek, full post will be Friday. With professional photographs! {Because I mailed it to her.}

Worked on a Tennessee Waltz for my aunt - the first border, an "extension" border is done. {My NewFO.}

Kept steadily cutting Ripples and Reflections. O.M.G. So much cutting! I thought I would cheat and just cut step 1, but so many of the steps overlap pieces. I need one Fabric 4, Piece B, for Step 1, then four more in Step 6, and the last three in Step 10 - or something like that. So I need to cut everything...and I really don't know how to organize it.

Put extension borders on Summer Drinks. I wasn't sure on this, but I think it's the perfect way to finish it off.

Finished the star blocks for Cardinal Charms and started piecing the rest of the quilt. I laid it out and thought about making more star blocks {six seems paltry} but I really like the 10x12 layout. So I'm sticking with it.

{And yes, the colors will be spread out. Just threw them on the design wall/floor to check layout numbers.}

Since we're halfway, here's six months of Churn Dashes. Not too many darker ones, but this month is red, so there will be some darker tones added. Overall I'm really happy with these!

Oh, and I made a skirt! A very simple maxi skirt, but I followed instructions. And my fabric wasn't stretchy in the same direction as the instructions. So my waistband had no I measured after eating pasta, so everything was just a little off. ;) I ended up sewing a casing, picking out the side seam, and putting in elastic. Little extra work but it fits fine now! And the foldover waist hides the extra stitching.

There was also school finishing and national park visiting and half marathon running and lion feeding and inappropriate dam joking. You know, summer stuff.

BOMs Away Monday @ What A Hoot
Design Wall Monday @ Patchwork Times
Linky Tuesday @ Freemotion by the River
WiP Wednesday @ Freshly Pieced
Rainbow Scrap Challenge @ SoScrappy
Scrap Basket Sunday @ Kim's Big Quilting Adventure
Fabric Frenzy Friday @ Fort Worth Fabric
A Year of Lovely Finishes
Fresh Sewing Day @ Lily's Quilts
NewFO @ Cat Patches

Weekly Progress - Making a New Routine

Okay, first of, is anyone else not getting all their comments emailed to them? I just realized this is happening to me {big sorry to anyone I haven't replied to...and I thought Lynn just stopped loving me!} and I don't know how to fix it. And I have about six seconds a day to reply to comments so I really need the ease of hitting reply!

And second off...ugh, let's just say after this quickie post, I'm off to buy a card reader and a new camera card. Only all the photos since our first trip to Korea. No biggie. Sigh.

So...things are getting a little better around here. We're working out a routine that works for lots of one-on-one play time and some play-by-yourself time that allows Momma to do some work. It usually ends when the Little Man starts "playing" with CC...but I can get some work done in between.

Which means my design floor is now a full t-shirt quilt! I need to do a little color shifting...too much dark there at the top. But it should be stitched together by the end of the week.

I'm especially proud of taking this shirt...

...with its V-neck and badly-placed-logo and cool side stripes and too-slim-for-the-block-silhouette... this!

And I did my Weekly Churn Dash - this fabric is from one of my very second quilt. No picture/link of the quilt because it was long before I thought about blogging.

And these have been coming along as leader/enders as well.


May - The Family Month

A little earlier this month, when my husband said he was going to take the Dude to see Godzilla, I said the good movies don't come out until May.

It might have been May 16 when this conversation took place.

So... I also didn't notice May was pretty much over by this morning. So this is a bit rushed during my precious Daniel Tiger distraction time.

Cat Tails - and my family! My AYOLF for the month.


Running T-shirt Quilt - all but the two hardest blocks are pieced! They require very careful cutting, so I saved them for last. And I need to wiggle around the color placements to break up the darks.

Weekly Churn Dashes - a lovely set of green. It was hard to choose this month; I really like my greens!

Cardinal Charms - my NewFO - I started this Christmas quilt as my leader/ender, since it's easier to have out than Celtic Solstice.

And I made a running skirt for the Portland Rock'N'Roll Half Marathon...a mere 7.5 days after getting back from Korea. YEAH. That was insane.

Other than that, this month has just been getting to know my toddler and making this new family dynamic work. We're slowly getting there. Most things are good, other than communication. And I know that will come...eventually. And since most other things are good, I can't really complain.

But I'd really like him to learn "more" and stop slamming his plate on the table.