Sunday, April 27, 2014

I WON!!! Twitter Laptop and SNOW (really?????)

April 27, 2014

Good morning everyone! i haven't written because, although I'd been busy quilting and sewing, i hadn't finished anything. i wrote a funny story to the Canadian Quilter Podcast and she put it on the show! i won an applique book written by her guest speaker Daphne Greig. she is a Canadian quilter who makes her living at it. being a person who rarely wins anything i was excited! i haven't received my book yet but when i do i'll review it for you. btw, if you're not listening to brandi lynn of the Canadian quilter podcast, you should. its a good show and i love her Canadian slant on things.
can you see the snowflakes in this picture people??? this was april 21st!!!! enough already! we still have a patch of snow in our front yard. i suppose i should remember that 2 or 3 weeks ago we had 3 feet of snow in the front yard and 5 feet of snow in our backyard. the mister was so desperate to start playing with his new tractor, he bundled up and went out and did some motor fixing things to it anyway. he's been waiting for the weather to warm up as much as i have. we don't usually mind whatever the weather is, but this winter has been a beast. i can only think that next winter couldn't possibly be as bad. i have a feeling i'll be in a really big whine mode next winter if it is!
i finished the table runner i made for the common threads quilt show auction that will be held the end of june. they have real auctioneers run the auction (the auction company donates their time). its one of my favorite parts of the show. my sister and i get something to drink and sit down in the chairs and just watch with fascination as the auctioneers run this. its so cool. 100% of the money made from this goes to the guild's charity projects. the prairie quilt guild has their show every other year and 2 years ago my sister and i made clock wall hangings (with real working clock parts) and donated them. my sister's made $75 and mine made $50!. this year we're doing a 4th of july theme. I'm donating the table runner and she made the cutest little wall hanging  of a fire cracker exploding. i can't wait to see them auctioned off.
you wouldn't think that I'd still be using my swear jar, but we got a new laptop last week and unfortunately, while it's really great, it didn't come with many directions. each day the mister and i work on it a little bit and figure something out and its getting easier. now that I've been able to download my email & craftsy classes in it I'm feeling a little bit calmer about it. the "manual" (this is in quotes because I'm not sure it deserves the title of manual) has about 1 page worth of useless stuff on it. this is a dell inspiron that got good reviews so we've been surprised at the lack of written help that's available for this thing. my poor swear jar is just stuffed to the gills. son, Andrew is in Europe for another week but I'm sure he'll give us a hand if we haven't figured everything out by the time he gets back.

another thing I've done this week is to join twitter. i have yet to write anything yet but I'm all signed up and following most of the podcasters i listen to. i joined so that i can enter the contest that lazy daisy is having. its a simple one......if you started a quilt before this year and finished it starting January 1st 2014, then your name goes in a drawing to win a quilt that lazy daisy made! I've finished Andrew's huge quilt in January. the pictures above are of a kid's quilt that i started last summer. i used my accuquilt go cutter for these blocks. it was so easy using that thing! i didn't put the half square triangles, 4 patches and blocks in any particular order. i just watched the color pattern and would add a square with black in it or a light color if the quilt was looking dark. i used some red material that i had on hand and i stipple quilted it in black. i figured it was way too busy for any fancy quilting. i like the I Spy look to it and i think I'm going to put this in my etsy shop. i need to get my shop up and running again.

the other thing that i completed this week was two memory match games. my boys and their friends always loved to play this game so, with all of my I SPY material sitting in bins, i decided to make 2 sets of fabric memory match games. they are 4" square and the backing is all the same. I'm going to put these in my etsy shoppe also. i can think of a few little kids who will enjoy them if they don't sell!

nora jean is still hanging in there. she'll be having blood work done this week to see how things are going. i am still giving her prednisone and her chemo plus an antacid. the doctor is giving her weekly b12 shots. she's had a few good days that we can really see that she's feeling pretty good. she's gaining her weight back which is a good sign. she still likes to sew with me and I'm so glad she does! her doctor reminded me that she's not "cured" yet and will likely have some bad days along with the good ones. i appreciated her talking me off the ledge. we do love our nora jean and really hate seeing her go through this.
this week i am so grateful for our wonderful vet, dr brown. her kindness and thoroughness has helped us probably more than she realizes. I'm also grateful for my sister and brother, who call regularly to see how our "patient" is doing and finally, i am REALLY jealous of my brother who just bought his longtime girlfriend, not ONE but TWO little yorkie pups. i have a friend who had one for many years called Elizabeth and i thought she was the sweetest thing. i love those dogs! i suppose if they can't live here then I'm glad they will be living with sandy and my brother. they couldn't be going to a nicer home! i'll have to make them some little puppy mats as a welcome gift! see you in a week or so and have a wonderful day. nancyb

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

April Fool's Day NOT!!!!! Kendall's Birthday and Nora Jean

i took this picture of our back yard about an hour ago. I'd love to say APRIL FOOL'S but I'm afraid it's the real thing. This has been one heck of a winter and our front yard has just as much snow as our back yard. if you can enlarge the picture you'll see all of the animal foot prints. we've got quite a busy back yard! that being said, we had to take down our feeders and suets. we love watching and feeding our small birds and woodpeckers but we've seen too many bear in our backyard to keep the feeders up. they've been reporting all over town that the bears are waking up, snow or no snow and they are hungry! the mister and i were coming back from our walk recently and a wolf (yes i said a wolf!) was walking out of our yard to cross the street. it stopped and looked at us and quickly continued on his way. we've also caught 3 raccoons, a coyote, fox and of course deer quite regularly on our game is fun to watch them pass through.

i made these for kendall's birthday and we filled them with stuff she likes and of course some money. we can't believe she is 13 years old already. i got the pattern for the red and blue bags from the new Sew It magazine that is only $3.99. The mister got me a subscription to it and to the sister magazine Quilt It. they're great magazines for the money and there is always something i want to make that's in it. the lacrosse bag i made by adjusting the size of the bag patterns. very easy to make! the little gift envelope i got off the allpeoplequilt website. it literally takes minutes to make and fits a gift card or cash in it nicely.
for some reason i didn't get a picture of kendi with her cake but her brother will do! they're both so sweet i could just squeeze them to death! (i think I've tried but their father interfered :>} )


 this is the backing I've been working on for my next big quilt. (the top is all finished) it's turning out to look like a modern quilt! i have tried several times to make a modern quilt but i end up switching things up and when I'm done it goes back to looking like a traditional quilt. i am taking my time with this because it is as big as Andrew's quilt is. it's going on our bed and i want it to look nice.....front and back. if i manage to do this right i'll be able to use both sides. fun!



this is a ufo that I finished. i bought the material when i worked at joann's and it is a cheater cloth. i machine tied it because that's what it seemed to need. it came out great and will go in my pile of kiddie quilts to be donated or given to family and friends. i found the perfect binding for it in my stash. do you know how long its been since I've bought material???? it is backed in flannel and is nice and soft. i have enough to make another one and may do that this coming week.
now for our nora jean news. finally we have a diagnosis. she has lymphoma. we took her to the animal hospital about 80 miles from here and she had two hours of surgery and 15 staples in her little belly. she had the staples taken out yesterday by our vet and we will be starting her on chemo and prednisone tomorrow. she'll also be getting a b12 shot once a week for a while. while this type of cancer is not curable, it is very treatable and most cats respond to the treatment very well (so we've been told). she has been a brave little girl and we're hoping and praying for many more years to spend with her. this is the mister giving her a nice "brushy" while she rests.
i took this picture yesterday because, as we all know, she is the best helper cat there is. she is not allowed to jump or climb for a while so she gave me a sweet bliiiip when i put her in her "spot". after checking out the doves and squirrels outside she settled down to listen to my audiobook and the hum of my sewing machine with me. we were both calmer and happier for it. keep good and healing thoughts in your hearts for out nora jean. i'll write again soon. nancyb