Monday, June 28, 2010

Rest In Peace

Harry B Stockton
(my grandfather)
August 6, 1911 - June 27, 2010

Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Whole Samurai

The front.
The back. (Dang fold lines.  That's what I get for dragging it all the way to Alabama in the heat.)
The detail. (I had agonized over the quiting, but I think it is okay.)
I love the chickens on it.
And the fun colors.
I love kits because the fabric is always something exciting to discover.
And here is a picture of Mom's whole quilt.
And the back.
I was reading about entering a quilt in a show, and the rules asked about the completion date of the item to be entered.  This blog has cataloged completion dates for me.  It has help me keep a record of my work.  So no matter how slow I go, I can still look back and see that I did, indeed, do something with my free time.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Finally done with Samurai Squares

Kitten has been with this quilt every step of the way, so tonight, as I put the last stitches in the binding, she stayed right on it.  And I kept the lint brush handy.  I will take the quilt to Spirited Quilter's in Duluth Tuesday night for show and tell.  But for now I will let Kitten have it all to herself.
Mom sent this small quilt home with me.  I love the colors.  Kitten wasn't interested in it though.  It doesn't "match" with her.
I wish these flowers were in my yard.  They are all the way over in Alabama.  The pots are stacked up on rebar.  I thought that was one of the most cleaver ideas I'd ever seen.

How not to use Heat N Bond

I had already cut out all the fabric hearts when I decided to switch from hand sewing them down to fusing, so I lay the hearts on top of a teflon-type ironing sheet and cut a piece of Heat N Bond to fit over the top.  After I pressed it with the hot iron I thought "what the hell are you doing?"
But it did come off the pressing paper.  The sticky stuff was all over the pressing sheet making it barely usable.  Sheesh.
I need MORE quilting classes and practice time.
As a way of illustrating  frustration with my poor quilting skills, I asked my husband how good a person would be at golf or basketball if they only got to practice once a week.  He asked me why do I want to play golf and basketball?  "No, no, no.  That's not what I meant.  Good grief.  Never mind."  I forget you cannot be cryptic when talking to a man.  At least not this man.

I had hand stitched the center.  That is me and my now deceased Grandmother Stockton in the center of the "I love you Grandpa" bed topper I mailed off this morning.
After I fused down the remaining hearts, I used my Bernina stitch regulator to go around the hearts in a type of raw edge appliqué.  Honestly, this little project made me feel like a flunky quilt maker.  I do not get along with the stitch regulator yet.  The more I want to stitch in a particular manner, the more it has a mind of its own. Again; I need more practice!
I quickly snapped this photo before I packaged it and  ran off to the post office.  I don't think it came out badly.  I so wanted to make a masterpiece for Grandpa, but God decided to let me know I still have a lot to learn.  The love is there at least.  And that is what matters most.

I got to have lunch with my eldest handsome son this week:
He delivered the shocking news that he and his wife think their new home may be haunted.  YIKES!
I don't know any easy Feng Shui cure for that!
And finally, here is the reason for my usually abbreviated correspondence:
Kitten likes to lie in my lap while I type.  Quite often she will stretch herself out onto the keyboard and press  multiple keys.  Needless to say that can cause the typist (me) problems.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

At Home With Kitten

Yesterday was my last day of vacation, so Kitten relaxed with me in the sewing room.
She has a serious thing for the door.
Keeping an eye on me so I don't leave again.
While I rearranged the guest bedroom she hung out on the quilt rack.
This is one of Mom's little quilts showing the heart of the home.
For Kitten I think that could be me.

Monday, June 21, 2010

The rest of vacation (but not a vacation of rest)

Tasha (my parents dog) was a good car rider Friday as we went to Warsaw, Mo to see Grandpa Stockton.
 Grandpa will be 99 in August, but his health is not so great right now.
Aunt Katie and Saltbox Primitives are also in Warsaw, so we managed a little shopping, too.
Saturday morning I went around the house and took some parting shots. A kitty wall hanging
And a kitty pillow
One more (pitiful) kitty
We drove through really bad weather Saturday afternoon on the way to the airport.
So scary when you see signs like this one:
Mom and Dad had me to the airport 3 hours early.  One thing about Dad; he will never be late to anything.  What do you do when all your sewing is packed in suitcases or already mailed home?  Buy a novel of course, so I chose The Girl Who Played With Fire. It is great so far, but now that I am home I'd like to sew.  And, dang it, you cannot do both!
So I am working on a summer spread for Grandpa Stockton.  I am sure he does not need a quilt, but a lighter weight "spread" will do.
That's Grandma Stockton (deceased) and me in the photo.  I was probably about 4 months old and the photo would have been taken before Mom and I went to Germany to be with Dad.  I thought this a good choice for the center because I know how much he loves (loved) Grandma and he loves me, too.
 We are his past and his future.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Daughters Who Don't Listen

I was talking to someone (Marie?) in Alabama who didn't know what gooseberries were and could not believe a BERRY could be green.  Here they are:
Dad and I collaborated on dinner the first night.  He made the grilled portobello mushrooms and I made boiled beets, beet greens with red onion and cabbage soup served over rice.
I was so excited about Mom and Jan's new line of fabric:
(part of the line shown)
I unrolled a jelly roll and started slicing.  Mom was trying to slow me down to get an idea what I wanted to do with it, but I WAS NOT LISTENING.  I just wanted to sew and make something.  I kept saying to myself "don't think.  SEW!"  Well, darn.  Thinking is not so overrated as I thought.  And design walls serve a really good purpose.  I don't like what I did with the beautiful fabric, and now I am going to "frog stitch" it (you know: rip-it, rip-it).  Only I will do so CAREFULLY so I can redo a more pleasing design which I will preview and THINK about before stitching together.  
Mom tried to rescue my efforts with borders and rick rack.
Mom mentioned when she doesn't like what she is working on, she folds it up and puts it away.  I figure maybe it is time to LISTEN.  Maybe she knows something about quilting?

We had visitors yesterday.  Debbie and Jackie (lovely lady who makes the wonderful placemats seen here) came over and brought their little baby Lily.
And Lily met Tasha.
Mom, Jackie and Debbie
They have been friends with mom for about 40 years.

I put away my "not listening; sewing" fiasco and went back to the Karen Stone's "Rattlesnake" quilt we have been working on together.  Previously I was attaching the outside of the melons to melons mother had already paper pieced, but now, with paper piecing skills from my mariner's compass class with Brenda Henning, I was able to piece the additional melon sections we need.  I have three more to do.
But that will wait.  Today we are driving to Warsaw, Missouri to see Grandpa Stockton.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


The fingernail-sized four patches are now where they will stay.  The next task is stitching them down.  I hope airline security will let me on board with a milliner's needle and thread snips.  I really want to work on this while I am relaxing in Kansas City.
I am trying to decide what fabric to use on the borders of the mariner's compass.  I don't have enough of the floral, so I will look for it at Harper's, if Mom and I have a chance to go there.  Here is what I'm thinking:
But I will leave it behind on the design wall.  I am not sure it gels or not.

Monday, June 14, 2010

My First

Mariner's Compass!
I agonized over the fabric for this, and didn't like what I'd brought to the workshop (Brenda Henning, Quilt Symposium of Alabama), but I persevered until lunch time when I went shopping in the quilters mall.  I wasn't looking for a new fabric, but the floral "spoke" to me and said "I might work." So I took it back to the workshop with me and love the result. The mariner's compass in the previous post "needed" my original center fabric choice.
I am so glad it worked out.
NOW, spend some quality time with the hubby and pack for Mother's.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Take a pause

I had a lot of fun at the Quilt Symposium of Alabama

The first day I took a class, after checking in, with Cindy Blackberg. We quietly hand-stitched.  It was a good way to relax after unloading my car.  On Friday I had a full day with Sally Collins and I fell completely in love with her miniatures!
These little tiny pieces
go at the corners of little tiny wedding ring intersections.
Like so:

She is serious fun to learn from; I think you can tell:
I can't wait to get one of her books!  
Saturday I sat with Pat from Spirited Quilters, and we worked on Mariner's Compass with Brenda Henning of Bear Paw Productions.  We aspire to learn this:
 One of the other students found a good use for her partially completed Compass:
And here is another student's nearly completed Compass:
The grounds of the Abbey in Cullman are lush and peaceful. The food is wonderful.  I swear my pants shrank two sizes while I was there.  Think of blueberry white chocolate scones for breakfast and prime rib and tiramisu for dinner. Yeah, really, that good!
Next year's teachers were announced:  Peggy Barkle (see previous post here ), Lisa Bongean (see previous posts here and here), Karen Kay Buckley, Pepper Cory, Beth Ferrier, Anne Lullie and Helen Squire. I hope the vacation fairies smile on me again next summer.
I went walk-about with my camera yesterday. At the Ave Maria Grotto I found this whimsical composition:

On a pedestal of sea shells and marbles
and a pretty kitty-kitty.
I leave for Kansas City Tuesday morning early, so I'll have to visit with you again next weekend.