Thursday, March 29

Calling Dr. Sandi!

Last weekend, I stopped to see one of my favorite neighbor girls, Sarah. I brought her some Easter socks and she thought they were really cute. Then she whispered in her mom's ear and I heard her mom say "yes" and then Sarah ran to her room and came back with a teddy bear. It was a very tired, injured looking teddy bear. He only had one eye and he had a gaping hole in his neck and at his right ankle (yes, bears have ankles). He had a red bow that was very worn. Sarah asked if I could fix her bear and soooo.........calling Dr. Sandi!! I said yes and brought him home. Here's what the little bear looked like after I washed and mended him. Yep, he made a trip through the washing machine. And then he tumbled in the dryer. He needed a little stuffing, so I plumped him up and stitched his neck and ankle wounds closed. Then I added a plaid bow tie. I had to sort through a lot of buttons to find one that was a close match for that left eye. And so here he is, all clean and sweet..........
I had an extra little fleece blanket that my mother had made so I wrapped the little bear so he would be warm until he could be returned to Sarah. My mom punches holes all around the edge of fleece squares and then begins crocheting a border in the holes. Pretty cool, huh?
This afternoon, I called Sarah's house and left a message ...... "This is Dr. Sandi calling and the patient, little Mr. Bear, has been mended and is fully recovered so you can come by to pick him up". That got a good laugh from Sarah's Dad. :-)  Within an hour they stopped by and here is Sarah, very happy to have her bear.
I asked if the bear had a name and she said it was Corduroy because he looks like Corduroy from the bear books for kids. While the little bear has been around for awhile, Sarah hasn't had him long because he is sort of a "rescue bear". You see, she found him on the street a couple weeks ago. As noted, he was in pretty sad shape but that bath and some stitching and a new eye gave him "new life". Somewhere, it's possible some child is missing a favorite bear but he is now in good hands! This is the third time I have "rescued" a stuffed animal for someone. It's kind of fun. And, so, yes, I think this has earned me the title.......Dr. Sandi, SAR (Stuffed Animal Resuscitator).   :-)
And it also proves that .........
"There is something to love in everyone" ....
just like this cross stitch piece says. My daughter, Collette, stitched this for me several years ago and I love the saying. I wish I knew the designer's name but I don't know where Collette found the design. Anyway, sometimes we are all a little bit worn and wounded but thank goodness there is someone to love us. I think it's really sweet that Sarah loved the worn little bear enough to want to make him well again. Just made me smile to be the one to help that happen.

Have a good day everyone!

Sandi

Wednesday, March 28

Got the Blues!!!

That's right. I've "got the blues" but I'm not sad. Nope. I'm glad. If you read my last post, you know that I mentioned, I was going to make another sampler quilt in all blue fabrics. I had found a basket full of blue fabrics that I had pulled together some time ago.
At the top of the fabrics in the basket was a bundle wrapped in a pretty blue fabric and when I unwrapped that bundle, here's what I found...........
I had already cut the pieces for eight blocks and chose the fabric for the final four!!  WOW! My work was almost done! I can barely remember cutting these fabrics but I must have. Either that or the Good Fabric Fairy was playing in my stash. LOL! I had even started sewing this one...........
The fan was stitched and all I had to do was add the lace trim and applique the fan to the backing square. I finished it by adding the side strips and corners. I am not sure how I will set the blocks together but I'll figure that out when they are finished. All the blocks were wrapped in the pretty blue fabric that the block is sitting on. I think I will use it as a border and also the backing. So, as you can see, I "got the blues" yesterday but they were happy blues!!

There was no time to sew another block today as I had a doctor's appointment and then when I got home, I finalized the letter for our class reunion and printed it out on some colorful paper. It's our 45th for the Class of '67 at Central Webster in Burnside, Iowa!! Letters will go out tomorrow! Yay! I am having a hard time believing that it has been 45 years since I graduated from high school. That sounds soooooooo long ago! :-)
The doctor appointment was the final one before surgery next Monday. I'll be going in to have that ovarian cyst removed. I am looking forward to it because I'll sleep through it. Harder part will be the liquid diet I have to do this weekend prior to surgery. This means no chocolate chip cookies!!!! I'll survive. At this point, I will do anything to feel better and get back to my old self. Am prepared for a six week recovery. Projects are lined up and I am ready to stitch while my husband brings me tea and crumpets. wink wink  :-)

Look for another blue block soon.............
Sandi

Monday, March 26

What's on the line......sort of.......

Once again, there is nothing "on the line" but soon, I'll "get my groove" back and there will be quilts and pretties to hang on the line and share with all of you.  In the meantime, I thought I'd share this quilt that I made in 2002...............

It hangs on the wall in our family room. I designed the blocks and then shared them with a group of friends at my church. Almost all the fabrics in this quilt are from Cranston Prints. I chose them because I liked them and didn't pay any attention to tone or value. Sometimes that works out fine and sometimes not. In this case, it seems to work. The quilt was machine-quilted by Sara Peterson. You can't see the quilting well at all but it's really nice. Anyway...........as I have been working/sorting in my sewing room, I have come across several unfinished projects. Actually, there are more than several but ........  I found a basket full of blue fabrics that I had gathered together a couple years ago so that I could make this quilt design all in blue and white. I plan to do just the blocks, not the verse section. I realized that I really liked the blue and white fabrics and decided it would be a good project to work on in the coming weeks. I'm going to make the first block today!  If you'd like the block patterns for this quilt, they are available in my yahoo group.........Season's BOM. Just click on the Angel button on the sidebar and you can join the group. :-) 
I guess this means I'll have a "blue Monday" if I'm working on a blue and white quilt. Sounds good to me! Have a good Monday whatever the color of your project and a great start to the week!
Sandi



Tuesday, March 20

Starting Spring with Good news!

I have good news. It's spring! Sometimes in Minnesota the official first day of Spring arrives and there is still snow on the ground. Not this year. We had temps in the upper 70's for the past four days and that is unheard of in March in Minnesota. Today it's not quite so sunny or warm but it is still spring-like and I can hear the birds singing outside my sewing room window. There aren't any flowers growing yet but some neighbors have tulips that are beginnning to pop up. These beauties will soon bloom again in Ned and Mary Ann Pillings yard. The photo was taken in the spring of 2010. Ned's tulips were so pretty and I love tulips! They are my very favorite sign of spring! I have this quilt that I want to make that will feature tulips. I may get to it this spring. I am taking time just for me these days. And there is good reason for that.............
If you follow my blog regularly or you are in my Yahoo groups, then you know that I have had some health issues. I shared details in my private Yahoo groups last week but then I had to decide........To share or not to share on blog? Well, the time has come when I need to share because I do have some health issues facing me and I need to let you know what is and isn't happening. Let me just say......... I have had a very bumpy road the past two weeks, but I am doing well and have a brighter outlook than I did just two weeks ago. 
For those who don't know......a little background......a routine chest x-ray during a visit in early February to a dermatoligist at the Mayo Clinic revealed a shadow area on my right lung. That triggered a series of exams, a CTscan and then a PETscan. The PETscan showed three tiny areas on the lung that "lit up" (which means they are looked at as possibly cancerous) plus a spine lesion and an ovarian cyst (neither "lit up"). So that meant more exams, a needle biopsy of the lung, an MRI to look at the spine lesion and an appointment with an oncologist. All this in a couple of weeks. I was exhausted, not sleeping well, and my emotions and those of my husband, kids, and family were stressed to the max. Then yesterday, I had my appointment with the oncologist who gave me and my husband the good news that the biopsy showed NO cancer in the lung nodules!!  Big, big sigh of relief!!  However, he thinks I have some kind of an infection/fungus in my lung so I have been referred to a Pulmonary Specialist for an appointment in early April. He felt there is no emergency now that they know they are not cancer but it does need to be treated, whatever it is and he will follow the nodules for several months to observe if they change size. I am not sure what the spine lesion is but at this time it is not looked at as cancer. The next thing up for me is surgery to remove the ovarion cyst (a blood test for ovarian cancer was done and I only scored a 6 and needed to be below 35 so the doctor is confident this is just a water density cyst). That surgery will be "very soon" according to the doctor and I am just waiting for the call with a date. So, behind the scenes of my blog and Facebook, lots of doctoring has been keeping me busy and will continue to keep me busy for a couple months. You all know I would rather be busy stitching instead of visiting new doctors, nurses and clinics. However, there is one plus in meeting new people........I often meet a quilter and get to introduce them to my blog and learn of their quilting adventures. LOL!
Yesterday's news was such a relief as the last two weeks have been "grueling" to say the least. The time had come to share this on my blog because I have not been able to blog regularly.......no time and sometimes just didn't feel well or feel like writing a blogpost.  Now, though, if I'm not chatting much or blogging regularly, you will know why. I am looking forward to getting treated and getting well and getting back to regular blogging and family fun!!!  I have lots of photos for blogposts that never got written and projects I want to do and didn't have the energy to make. Spring is a season of Hope and I have lots of hope that this spring will be a good one!
Thanks to those who have been praying and sending positive thoughts. Knowing others care makes getting through tests, scans, etc. so much easier!
Sandi

Monday, March 19

What's on the line?

Eggs are on the line today!! I don't think I've ever shared this table topper that  combines cotton and woolfelt...............
I might have shown it as it graced my dining room table but here it is "on the line". To make this tabletopper, I taped two sections of newspaper together to get a piece of paper big enough to fold in half. And then I folded it in half again and made an arc and cut out the circle Then I scalloped the edges.  I cut two fabric patterns from this, one for the front and one that was the backing. I stitched all the egg shapes and then appliqued them to the front piece.
To add the eggs........I cut out 16 egg shapes in lots of spring colors and then added my own designs to each egg. I embellished each one with embroidery and lots of detail. Then, I blanket stitched each egg to the tabletopper. Next step was to place the lining over the completed top and I sewed around the edge. I left a small opening and slip-stitched it closed.  The topper was turned "inside out" and pressed, then I added one final touch.... I blanket stitched around the entire topper and then went around again which gave a "crochet" effect. If you can crochet, you could probably do something even prettier. I am "crochet and knitting needle challenged".  :-)
The photo above was taken last fall when it was lush and green and still warm. Currently it is very warm in Minnesota but not yet lush and green. Forecast looks like it could be very wet today and that would be great because pretty soon then..........it'll be lush and green.

Have a good Monday everyone!
Sandi


Friday, March 16

Don't miss it ....... A Blog Hop Party!

The winning name is Jodi and she has been notified!
There's a party going on and if you all are followers of Quilting*Gallery then you know that Michele is hosting another great blog hop event. This one is a celebration of St. Patrick's Day and this little leprechaun is dancing with joy at all the great giveaways that are going on at oodles of quilting blogs!!! Just click here and you'll be at Michele's Blog Hop Party where you'll find a list of all those who are participating.
Would you like to know what I'm giving away? Well, I wanted to give you a pot of gold.........as in a small pot filled with gold fabrics but I couldn't find a black pot. Sooooo......I went to my box full of thrift shop treasures that I use for making pincushions and I found this little ceramic basket. Then, I cut an oval of a pretty yellow cotton and I gathered it up with some thread, filled it with crushed walnut shells, then pulled the thread tight to secure the shells.  I stuffed it in the little basket and trimmed it with a bit of vintage rick rack. I added three lucky pins like I do to all the pincushions I make. I don't know why, but it's just sort of a "good luck" thing that I do. And speaking of "good luck".........
All you have to do to win this little spring pincushion basket (and the lucky shamrock fat quarter that it is sitting on) is leave your name and an e-mail link (I must have it to tell you if you are the winner) and you must tell me the luckiest thing that ever happened to you. That's all! You can begin leaving your comments now and a winner will be announced on the evening of Saturday, March 23rd. Giveaway is open to all wherever you are!!  May the luck 'o the Irish be with you!!!
Sandi who has Irish roots in that gray hair of mine. LOL!

Giveaway is closed, winner has been notified!



Monday, March 12

Nothing hanging on the line but...........

Look!! There's something new hanging in my sewing room!!! ............
I convinced my husband to pose after he finished hanging this chandelier over my sewing room table work area. Hanging the chandelier is something he's been willing to do for about a year but my fabric piles were so high that there wasn't even a path to get to the middle of the room so he could hang it!  But recently, I have been plugging away at organizing my fabric and finally cleared a path so he could hang this lovely chandelier. Here it is after I tidied up a bit............
There's a story behind this light fixture. If you are a regular follower of my blog, you probably knew a story was coming. :-) This chandelier once hung in the Arlington Haus restaurant in Arlington, MN. Shortly after we moved to Henderson, I decided to shop for groceries in the town of Arlington, just west of us so I could see what the town had to offer. I stopped for lunch at the Arlington Haus. The chandeliers were so pretty and while it looks like it's green and pink, it's actually turgoise and pink. Camera did something funny. Anyway, as I waited for my food to arrive, I took my napkin and sketched a little penny rug design based on the design in the chandelier. When I got home, I sketched out a full-size pattern. Then I began making the design in woolfelt. I made several of them in different colors. I entered a couple in the county fair and earned blue ribbons. Here's a little sample of the different colors but all made with the same basic design...........

I called the design "Table Grace" because I thought it would be a pretty little thing to "grace my table". Then I collected different versions of table grace prayers from friends and family. I always intended to put the design into a pattern and include a few of the table grace prayers with it. I just never have quite made that happen. Maybe someday. :-)  In the meantime, these pretties grace my table for the various seasons and holidays of the year. They make me smile. :-)
Oh, so back to the story. You need to know how I got that chandelier..........
One day, about a year or so after my first visit, I decided to go over to the Arlington Haus and take along a couple of my penny rugs and show them to the owner. I thought she might like to hear how the restaurant's light fixture inspired me. I entered the restaurant and immediately thought I was in the wrong place. I saw salmon colored walls and new sleek black tables, chairs, booths, modern light fixtures. Those pretty chandeliers were all gone!!! I was seated by a waitress and after she took my order, I asked if the owner was available as I had something to share with her. Her name is Denise and she came over to my booth and sat down and I shared how the chandelier inspired me. I told her I loved the renovation but I also missed those pretty chandeliers. And then she said........"Would you like to have one of the chandeliers? We're going to be putting them out on our garage sale but you can have one if you want one." Well, of course, I said "yes" and we arranged that I would come back later and pick it up. I couldn't believe I was going to take that chandelier home. Denise said that as I shared my story about stitching that I reminded her of her mother. It was really sweet the way she said it. So, I came home with the chandelier and showed it to my husband. He was actually quite fond of it and thought it would look good in his office. I thought differently. Life got busy and the chandelier sat wrapped in batting in a large box in the basement. I had this idea that it would look good in my sewing room. However, as mentioned, my sewing room was total fabric chaos until just recently. But when my husband could see that he could get a ladder in place and hang it, he got right to it. In less than an hour today, the chandelier was hung and I absolutely love the way it looks!!! Plus, it gives me much needed light that a little ceiling fixture could not provide. I have some more organizing to do and then I can take a few more pics and show you just how cool my room is looking. In the meantime...........
Here's hoping you all have a good Monday. Going to be a rainy Monday here but I love rain, so very refreshing and much needed for the spring that is to come!
Sandi



Tuesday, March 6

Did I buy any quilt fabric?

I did not! That's right, I went to Firefly*Quilt*Shop and I did not buy one piece of cotton quilting fabric. And it was Fat Quarter Friday! Instead, I went straight to the batting .....
and picked up a throw-size quilt batt. I have plenty of tops that need to be finished so my goal is to buy the batting and get some finished. That is, as soon as I get some lessons on my new sewing machine. All things in good time. :-) 
It was not just Fat Quarter Friday but it was also the birthday of Dr. Seuss so I had to take a picture of this soft and fun quilt.........
It was also my sister's birthday and I had made one of those furry infinity scarves and sent it to her a couple week's ago. I love all this soft stuff, like the minky in this monkey quilt. I know someone who might like this one but they're not a kid anymore.........
There were so many adorable soft and fun kids quilts that I was wishing I could make one for somebody.  Maybe I'll have to make one for a donation quilt. Didn't think of that when I was at the shop so I'll have to buy the minky next time I visit Firefly. As long as it's not cotton quilting fabric, I can buy it!!
I love the wooly corner at the shop..........
and needed just one bright blue woolfelt square.  I purchased it and the batting and then, new staff member, Amy, rang up my purchase. Just to be sure, owner Janice checked my bag to make sure I hadn't bought any fat quarters. LOL!  She can vouch for my committment to not buy any cotton quilting fabric. There were no fat quarters in my bag!! Thank goodness, Janice, doesn't mind that I am telling everyone I'm not buying cotton fabric. You see, I'm not buying but that doesn't mean you all don't have to buy. You go right ahead. I have ten more months of "not buying" to get through and it could get a lot harder. Then again, maybe not as I have been deep, deep cleaning in my sewing room and I have found some amazing fat quarters and fabrics that I have bought over the last dozen years. There is no shortage of fabric for my projects! And as you know from yesterday's giveaway post, I am even giving some fabric away. I think it's funny that so many of you are lusting after the pink can and the fabric "trash". I am going to search for another mini trash can so I can do this again sometime.
Going to be a heatwave here in Minnesota today. It could reach 50 degrees above zero. Amazing!!!! I might throw open the window in my sewing room and get some fresh air! :-)  Have a good day all!
Sandi

Monday, March 5

What's on the line?..........a Giveaway!

Giveaway is closed. Winner will be announced late Saturday afternoon. Had no idea this would be so popular! LOL!
That's right! I've got a little giveaway for you today. Taking a break from sharing a quilt on the line so that I can share some fabric. :-)   You know that saying......."One person's trash is another person's treasure?" Well, if you believe that, then you may want the "treasure" in this pink plastic trash can........
The can is about 10" tall and I have filled it with scraps and some fat quarters that I won't use. If you would like to have this can full of scraps, just leave your name and e-mail contact on this post. I will have my Random Number Man draw a winner on Friday evening. I'll mail the filled can, and some more scraps that I'll pack in the box with it, on March 15th. That'll give me time to add more scraps. You see, I'm cleaning in my sewing room and I am determined to "get a handle on my clutter". If I mail fabric to one of you, it won't be cluttering up my sewing room. Clever, huh?  Note .......... I always offer my giveaways to anyone anywhere, however, this one is only open to residents of the U.S. due to the cost of shipping this heavy little trash can of fabric. For my International readers..........I decided I would do "Four Fine Fat Quarters", for one lucky overseas entry. Tell me if you are from outside the U.S. and your name will go in a separate drawing. :-)
Now, leave your name if you want my fabric trash and then have a great day!!! Tomorrow, I'll let you all know how I'm doing with my personal challenge... "not gonna buy any cotton quilting fabric in 2012". See ya then. Have a great Monday!!
Sandi

And the winners are .......
Chelley wins the Pink Trash Can and Linny from Australia wins the Four Fine Fat Quarters! They have both been notified and replied with their addresses. This was so much fun.......look for me to do it again!
"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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