Monday, June 28, 2010

Blessings Winner!

And the winner of my Double Nickle give-away is Terry who blogs at Terry's Treasures. I  listed all the possible entries and choose number 55, Terry. Thank you dear friends for the wonderful greetings and ideas to celebrate my birthday. Thanks for following my blog! I've discovered many awesome blogs and have begun following your blogs, too. 

Monday, June 21, 2010

Between Charming Friends Quilt Along

Kelly of Cotton Charm Quilts (online quilt shop) and Charming Chatter blog along with Darlene of Quilting Daze are hosting an 8 week quilt along on Kelly's blog. This is week three of the quilt along and I was finally able to begin my quilt.

Week One was selection of our fabrics. I have developed a real obsession (yes, another one) for all fabrics by Moda's French General or Kaari Meng. I have purchased charm packs of all the French General lines. This Quilt Along seemed like the time to convert some of these charm packs into a quilt. Rural Jardin was my choice for this project.
We also needed some yardage. My choice for the backgrounds was actually some yardage from the first French General fabric line, Rouenneries.
Week 2: Cut the fabric according to the directions.

Week 3:  Construct the 4 patch blocks and the 16 patch blocks

These little blocks were so much fun to sew. Looking forward to Week 4 directions on Wednesday. Thanks, Kelly and Darlene for a fun quilting project!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Double Nickles and a Give-Away

Double Nickels!

The number 55

The Year 1955 

All of these  are important in my life. I was born in the year 1955. This is the year I celebrate 55 years of "a life of many blessings."  Double nickels reminds me of "nickels", quilting charms, 5 inch squares, charm packs. 
Not one,

But TWO charm packs!

Double 55's, Double Nickles, Double Charm Packs!  Please help me celebrate my birthday this week by participating in my blog give-away. When we visited the quilt shop in Blue Ridge on Monday, a new fabric line just spoke to me. It's by Moda, of course. The fabric line is "Blessings" by Brannock and Patek. I wanted to keep the charm packs for me, but I have already so many "blessings" in my life. You, my quilting friends in blogland, have been a wonderful blessing this past two and a half years since I began sharing my life with you as "The Quilting Booklady." 

My 2010 birthday give-away is 2 charm packs (double nickels) of Moda's Blessings by Linda Brannock ( my quilting  friend Carmen's mother) & ; Jan Patek, a bit of yardage from Blessings and a Scnibble pattern. The two charm packs and the yardage could be used with any of the Schnibbles patterns.  

Please leave a comment sharing with me the traditions or special blessings you enjoy in celebrating your birthday. One year, I attended an aerobic dance class (my first and last) to celebrate my day. Most years, I now try to take a long walk in the morning to celebrate and reflect. I love having cake to celebrate birthdays. German Chocolate is one of my favorites. My family often has a special dinner to celebrate in the evening. Sometimes we go out to eat at a restaurant. Sometimes, we cook a special meal. Grilled steak or salmon are two of my favorites. My sister-in-law often joins me one of the days in the week of my birthday for lunch and lots of visiting. A quilt shop visit is often on the agenda for my special week. This year should be no different:)

I'd love to have you become one of my blog followers. Becoming a follower or letting me know that you are already a Follower, will add an additional chance to win.

Thanks for helping me celebrate this special "Double Nickel" year ! I'll announce the winner sometimes next weekend. Take care!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Mountain of Sewing Fun

 The past three days have been filled with friends,  fabric, food and fun! It was our second annual sewing trip to Brenda's mountain home in Blue Ridge, Georgia. We brought cooked food, lots of sewing projects and lots of laughter.
Brenda's home is definitely in the woods. It's about a two hour drive from our homes, off the main roads, away from everything. Once we arrived at the cabin, the only other living creatures we saw were deer (Brenda put corn out each day for them) squirrels, birds and bugs. WONDERFUL! It was so quiet. Each afternoon it rained. Love the sound of rain on a tin roof!
 We did communicate some with nature. Brenda and I changed from our PJ's on Tuesday afternoon and took a walk to the next home in "the neighborhood." But what we really did was

Pat shared some of her designs in progress with us. She has some AWESOME secret projects in the works. The three of us were  ready to purchase those yet to be written  patterns and begin those projects.
 Kristie was super productive. She completed several projects like this Moda kit. Kristie began her blocks for The Jelly Roll Sampler Quilt Along in a luscious jelly roll, Nest by Tula Pink.  
Brenda worked on her blocks from the kit Pinwheels on Parade. Most of my sewing was on the tiny nine patches for my Scrappy Nines project.

Brenda, Kristie and I all worked on a swap project we participated in with Karin, Gretchen and Cindi. We traded light and dark Civil War reproduction fabrics to make Patches and Pinwheels, a project from Bonnie Hunter's website.  It seemed to be days of sewing half-square triangles for both Kristie and Brenda. I'm still working on the strips for the 16 patches.
Because we had the table filled with sewing machines, we ate our meals and had our Happy Hour out on the screened porch.
Parts of the first floor of the cabin were decorated with bear items. The upstairs had Moose items. I especially loved the bear towel holder:)

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Florida Suggestions

Next week, I have the opportunity to travel with my DH to the Clearwater/Tampa/St. Pete area of Florida. It's a business trip for him, but I can tag along for fun:) This is an area of Florida that we haven't visited before. We will drive from Atlanta to Clearwater so I will have access to a car.  Any suggestions of places we should visit, restaurants to eat, great shopping, quilt shops even?

I'm brining my laptop and camera. Hope to blog from Florida. It looks like we will have fee WiFi in certain areas of the hotel so I'll give it a try.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

A Thread So Thin

Reading and quilting are both passions of mine. Put the two together  and I'm one happy camper. Marie Bostwick has again given us a wonderful story in her newest addition to her Cobbed Court series. I anxiously waited for this novel to hit the bookstores. The date was marked on my calendar and immediately I  purchased a copy at a local bookstore. A Thread So Thin was a book to be savored. I took my time reading it, enjoying every word. It's a rare book of fiction that I find myself grabbing a pad and pencil to write down quotes from the story. This novel was one that I did just that. Here are just a few of the lines that resonated with me:

from page 7: "They're also members of my quilt circle. I know, it's weird to think of a twenty-two-year-old sitting around with a bunch of older women, making quilts, but what can I say? They're my girls." This line just resonated with me. That's how I feel about my quilting friends, my Thimble group. We're all very different in our ages, backgrounds, family situations, but we connect. They're my girls!

from page 48: "We're all women and we all like to quilt. Other than that, we're about as different as we could possibly be. All you have to do is take a look at our quilts to know that." My quilt girls are cat people, some like me are dog people, one is a bird lady, one even wanted to bring a goat home for a pet. We're nurses, math teachers, librarians, accountants, stay at home moms, computer experts, etc. etc.

from page 118: "... many students had purchased fat quarters of fabric, the first of what would become their 'stash,' the quilter's addiction and most prized possession, that collection of impulsively purchased fabrics we have no specific plans for but simply must have, our hoarded cache of inspiration."  This is so good! Can anyone else relate to this definition of their stash?

and finally from page 250: "She's my dear, cherished and forever friend, and no matter how badly she behaves, she always will be." That is indeed the kind of friend we want in our lives - one who will cherish us no matter how we badly we behave. They are our forever friend.

Dear quilting friends, do yourself a favor and read the books in the Cobbled Court series - A Single Thread, A Thread of Truth and A Thread So Thin. 

Jackie of Canton Village Quiltworks interviewed Marie Bostwick on her podcast, Jackie' Quilting Chronicles,  available on iTunes and her website. Jackie does a super job in her podcast introducing us to Marie as a quilter and a novelist. Thank you Jackie and Marie!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Just For You Quilts


Since not a whole lot of quilting (except for fabric acquisition) has occurred in my life the past couple of weeks, I'm searching through digital photos to share projects or events that I've yet to share with you my blogging friends. Last December (yes, I've not done a good job of blogging this year) I worked on this flannel rag quilt for the "Just for You" service project for the Gwinnett Quilters Guild. The guild makes quilts for the children at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta (the children's hospital). Previously, I was only able to attend the guild meetings during the summer months or take personal leave from work to attend. That will change now that I have retired from my school job. Anyway, I try to make one quilt a year to donate to this fabulous service project. I used a layer cake plus some charm packs of a Christmas line by Chloe's Closet for Moda. The precuts were aging in my stash. Rag quilts are a good option for me for this project because I don't normally do my own machine quilting. While I was pleased with the quilt, I wouldn't use charm packs for another rag quilt. I had to wash it several times and do additional snipping of the seams so that they would ravel or rag enough. I do hope that this next holiday season, this quilt will bring comfort to a sick child. With a bit more free time, I'm also hoping to make several Just For You Quilts this next year. 

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Retail Therapy

This is rather a LATE blog post about our latest "retail therapy" meeting. The Saturday before the last week of school, Kristie of M.S. Doolitte blog, Brenda of the Quilting Cowgirl blog and I met at Sweet Home to play. (We are displaying our "end of the school year" educator smiles) I received an email from Brenda asking if I wanted to meet them at 10:00 on Saturday morning. I didn't know where we were meeting, but instantly replied that yes I'd love to meet. It was sure to be a good time no matter where we met. We couldn't have found a better place to visit than Sweet Home.  Melisa, the shop owner, was away shopping for her customers at Spring Market, but the "girls" and Mike, her husband took great care of us.

Peggy Barkle, author of the quilting book  Blendable Curves: Stack, Slice & Sew Unique Quilts in a Weekend  arrived shortly after we did. Peggy or "P.J." was teaching a class in the upper classrooms. P.J. is president of the Gwinnet Quilters Guild, an awesome quilt designer, machine quilting teacher and a professional longarm quilter.  Many of my quilts were quilted by P.J. She does awesome work.

While tempted by many fabrics, notions, books and patterns, it was an upcoming Christmas line that was my undoing. I had previously contacted  Melisa with my credit card in hand to have her reserve two charm packs of the new French General line, Lumiere de Noel for me.I'm developing a real obsession for all the Moda fabric lines by French General.  I do have a plan for these charm packs . The new 3 Sisters line, Park Avenue was very tempting, too. There have been few lines by 3 Sisters that I didn't absolutely LOVE. Thanks, Brenda and Kristie!  I'm ready for our next "outing". It's SUMMER, we've go to PLAY.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Jelly Roll Sampler Quilt Along Blocks

With the end of school activities, I had several blocks for the Jelly Roll Sampler Quilt Along printed, but not sewed. Last week I did get this block together (Block 6 I think) I thought I had another to do, but couldn't find the block instructions in my sewing room :)

Yesterday and today, I spent a bit of time sewing the two blocks I still needed to put together. I found the directions for the missing block, block 5.
and completely the current block number 7. It seemed to be the right time to take all the completed blocks and place them on a design wall.
This has been a fun project. The two week time period between blocks seems to be just right.  To see more blocks from the Jelly Roll Quilt Along, check here. Visit the Flickr group pool of photos on the right column. For now, I am current with my blocks. The new block will be posted next Monday.