Monday, June 30

Surely June can't be over already!!!

This month of June has flown by so fast that I really cannot believe that tomorrow is the first of July! And even my grandson feels that time passes too fast! As he got ready for bed Saturday night, he was adding up how many days he'd spent here (he came on Thursday) and he said "the time has gone by too fast!" We certainly had fun this past weekend, though, as the time was flying by.
We started out on Friday with our main goal to go grocery shopping but Jacob asked "where else will we be going" and I said we had to stop at JoAnn's and get fleece and flannel. His response? "Can we look at some other fabric, too?" He knows that many times we pick out fabric for a bag or pillowcase or some project and sure enough we found one this time - Transformer fabric that he spotted while I was picking out the fleece I needed! He chose Taco John's for lunch and then we went to Target and printed out pictures from the Lehigh Quilt Show and some of the parade pictures. I had never printed pictures from my digital camera and this "not so technically adept woman" found that it is very easy to do! Anyway, we got the groceries and got home in time to put everything away and then went to the classic car parade on Main Street. Jacob picked the ones he wanted pictures of and I was his photographer.
On Saturday afternoon, we went down to the park to view the cars where they were on display in the park. Then the rain came and it got kind of cold so we came home. We were going to make fabric postcards but instead we made a felt turtle from a pattern found on-line and then I made the Transformer pillowcases. There was enough fabric to do one for Jacob and one for his friend, Robby. Then it was time to go to sleep on that pillow so Jacob went off to bed and I finished up the laundry.
Sunday dawned nice and sunny and we went off to church, then home to pack sandwiches and then Grandma, Grandpa and Jacob headed off to the parade. The Sauerkraut Days committee did a great job on getting participants for the parade. I'll post a few pics. My daughter, Collette, joined us and our favorite entry was the Su Fu Du band, drums,etc. out of Sioux Falls, SD. I would have enjoyed listening to them play more!
When the parade was done, we went up the street to Toody's for ice cream cones. A nice end to a great weekend. It's always fun to have Jacob visit. I just get a little tired 'cause I'm not used to having a kid around 24/7! I slept in this morning and then took a nap this afternoon just to recover!
Today's project was to work on details for the "Sew and Share" day that is coming up in two weeks. Had to set up an account at the bank for donations, then designed some flyers and posted around town, and will mail some to area churches. If you're reading my blog for the first time, go to for more details.
I squeezed in a little sewing time this evening. Did some embroidery of a little chick on a quilt block. I have a chicken story to share but it'll have to wait til tomorrow. I'll tell the story and post the photos tomorrow afternoon. I have to download the parade pics and then will pick just a few to post.

Thursday, June 26

Beautiful Sunny Days.......

We have had some gorgeous weather here this week. When I am outside walking our dog, the weather couldn't be more perfect - blue skies, a few fluffy clouds, almost no humidity, and not too hot. These last days are what summer is meant to be. It will change tomorrow as there is rain on the way but we are fortunate not to have the heavy rains that pounded Iowa again today. And speaking of Iowa, I will be posting some more info on Saturday about the "Sew and Share" project that will help victims of the flooding in Iowa. The "Sew and Share" work day is set for Saturday, July 12th starting at 9:30 a.m. at the Community Room at City Hall here in Henderson, MN. Lunch will be provided but there is a great little coffee shop, Bittersweet, nearby for those who need that special mocha latte or ? Down the street is Toody's Sweets & Treats where you can go for an ice cream cone or a malt. We'll stitch up a "storm", laugh and talk a lot and enjoy some good food all while working toward a good cause. Go to for more info.
I have a couple more quilt show photos to share. That's my cousin, Patty, pictured above with her purple tulip quilt. Without her help, we wouldn't have had the quilt show and, best of all, she has a wonderful laugh and you always have a good time when working with Patty!!
One of the things I found fascinating about our little show was that while there were only eight of us sharing quilts, we had a great variety of quilts from old to new, large to small. We ended up with three autograph quilts and one historical quilt that were closely tied to Lehigh's history. And the pictures I'm posting tonight show that with just eight of us sharing, we had four vintage butterfly quilts to share! In the picture above, Deb Hayes shared the embroidered butterfly and flowers quilt with the bubblegum pink borders. It's a family quilt believed to have belonged to a great aunt.
The quilt in the middle is a pink and blue stars quilt made by Delores Jebron and owned by me. The butterfly quilt on the right is owned by Sharon Hrubes, Patty's sister and was made by their mother, Ethel.

That's my mother with the butterfly quilt she shared. In the picture above it, you'll see her quilt on the right, then in the middle is a another quilt made by Delores Jebron called "Hearts and Flowers" (and owned by me) and on the left is another butterfly quilt made by Ethel O'Hearn and this one is owned by Patty. The butterfly quilt that my mother shared began with the butterfly blocks which were made by her Aunt Bell (raised her from childhood). Then my mother sashed the blocks with the blue fabric and it was handquilted by the ladies of the United Brethern Church which at the time it was quilted included my Aunt Marie and my Great Grandma Lillie. This quilt goes to my brother, Doug. My sister has a "Wedding Ring" quilt made by my Aunt Bell and I have a "Trip Around the World" quilt top that has yet to be quilted. I also have a scrappy nine-patch twin top that is tied and was made by my Great Granny Blair. I love the vintage quilts, the colors, the feel of the fabric and the knowing that they hold stories that we'll never know!

In addition to the great weather, I had a great day yesterday but ended the day too tired to post. I had a goal that I would finish two flannel/fleece quilt-a-blankie (my new name for what looks like a quilt but there is no batting because I back them with fleece so then they must be blankets!!) and I did. I made a pink and yellow one for a girl and a blue and yellow one for a boy and they will both be raffle prizes at a children's event held by the Scott County Historical Society in Shakopee on Sunday. I showed them to my daughter tonight and offered to make two of them as prizes for her Family Appreciation week at her daycare come September. I will post pics on the "Sew and Share" site as we will be making ones similar to those for flood relief. When I took a break at lunch and walked out to get the mail there was a package that I had been expecting. I am in a yahoo pincushion group called "Crazy About Pincushions" and I could hardly wait to open that package. Look below and see what lovely things I found inside thanks to Chris K. of Michigan! Then the pincushion I made for her was selected to be on the "homepage" of the pincushion site so I felt really honored.

That's all for tonight. My grandson is here so tomorrow so we will go grocery shopping and then later go to the Classic Car parade on Main Street. It's Henderson's "Sauerkraut Days Festival" this weekend so lots of fun stuff to enjoy. And, of course, we'll do some "projects". This weekend we are going to do some fabric postcards so perhaps we'll have some "show 'n tell" by Saturday.
Tomorrow is finally Friday!! Enjoy!!

Wednesday, June 25

The Quilts in City Hall...........

Some of my vintage quilts were hung on the clothesline next door to City Hall. I made the patriotic flag quilt in 2000 and the words below the flag are "I Pledge Allegiance to the Flag......"

The "Sugar Sack" quilt shown above was shared by Sharon Swalla. The name blocks were embroidered in 1924, then set aside. Sharon's mother Winona sewed the blocks together. She was one block short so made one with her husband's name on it. This was one of three "autograph" quilts that held the names of many Lehigh residents.
There were two "autograph" quilts that were quilted by the women of the United Brethern Church. That is the church I attended as a child in the 50's and 60's. The first quilt shown was likely made in the late 1940's to early 1950's and that can be determined by the names embroidered on the quilt. The women whose maiden names appear helped us to date the quilt. It is owned by Patty Dellechiesa.

The second quilt shown is owned by my mother, Mary, and was made for my Grandma Goldie in the 40's when she was the Ladies Aide president at the United Brethern Church. Her father even signed a block and it was then embroidered. I clearly remember those ladies sewing in the basement of the church. The cement walls made it cool in the summer when they would gather. I recall that they were painted pink and white and I remember the names of the ladies who gathered around and stitched on the mission quilts they made - my grandma, Goldie, my mother, Mary, Great Grandma Lillie, Aunt Marie, Maudie, Cora, Ruth, Ophelia, Betty, Bernice, and others. I can hear the sound of their voices, the laughter, I can see their heads bent over their stitching and it is such a warm memory that it is no wonder I love to stitch!

This last photo is not a very good one but the quilt itself is lovely. The quilt belongs to Mrs. Williams and was made by Mrs. Franklin in honor of Lehigh's Centennial in 1983. It depicts businesses, churches, etc. that were a part of Lehigh's history. Visitors who came to see the
quilts enjoyed seeing all the various quilts but these quilts with familiar names and places really got people to talking. And it was so fun to listen to the exchange of memories!!
That's all for tonight. I'll post more quilt pictures tomorrow night. It may be Tuesday but I am still catching up on the events of the weekend.

Earlier today I worked on a flannel quilt that is a raffle item for the Scott County Historical Society. This one is a pink one for a girl. Tomorrow I must sew up the bright blue one for a boy, then add their borders and deliver them on Friday. I made a small baby block quilt as a raffle prize for the library quilt show and it was won by a couple who have a new great-grandchild. How cool! I'll post photos of those on the weekend.
Night Owl checking out...........................

Monday, June 23

Setting up the Quilt Show......

So, it's Monday night but I am posting what we did on Friday when we set up for the quilt show. When I am in Iowa visiting, I usually don't have computer access unless I get to the library for a few minutes to use their computers. This time I was at the library most of the day Friday and Saturday but I was so busy with the quilts that there was no time for e-mail checking or blogging those days!

The day started on a "good note" and ended "in tune". It was a beautiful sunny morning and stayed that way all day! As my mother and I headed into Lehigh, we stopped first to take a picture of the new signs that mark each entrance into the little town of Lehigh. You can see it in the picture above. Lehigh sits in the valley of the Des Moines River and the water was still quite high. Flooding here was minor compared to other areas in Iowa. The committee that was planning the 125th celebration decided that nothing would be cancelled, they would just relocate some events to higher and dryer ground!

Our plan was to set up the quilts in the City Hall office. I was to meet my cousin, Patty Dellechiesa there and while we weren't sure how many quilts we would have, we thought that would be enough space. Turned out that we were also able to use the library and that was a good thing as we had lots of quilts to display. We didn't have large quilt racks or any fancy way to display the quilts so we used anything and everything from chairs to file cabinets, etc. to hang and drape the quilts for display. Tonight, I'll post the quilts that were in the Library and tomorrow evening, I'll post the ones that were in City Hall. Patty and I started pulling quilts out of bags and did the set-up and we had my mom give us advice on which quilts looked best next to each other. It took us twice as long to set up because we ended up with twice as many quilts! And what a treat that was!!! When we were finished this is how it looked. As you entered the library you saw the applique wall hanging on the left which was made by my mother, Mary Linn. She does beautiful applique and I was so happy when one of the younger women came to her and told her so!
When you looked to the left you saw the Red Hat quilt that my mother made. She found the pattern in a book and then decorated the hats with all sorts of trims and embellishments. I enjoyed watching her when she was working on it and then when it was finished she surprised me by giving it to me for Christmas that year (2003). It hangs in my sewing room.

In the center of the library you saw the quilts pictured below. We had a nice mix of quilts from new to vintage, small and large. The green quilt on the left was made by Patty, the vintage quilt belongs to her sister Sharon and Deb Hayes made the kaleidescope quilt on the left.

The two quilts pictured above - the Sunbonnet and the Hexagon - were made by a local woman many years ago. She had made them for her daughters-in-law but they didn't want them so they ended up on the estate sale where my parents bought them. They are beautifully stitched and quilted. Both are nearly king-size quilts and are very heavy! You would definitely be warm under these quilts!
At the check-out desk we hung a machine embroidered sewing theme quilt made by Jane Dutcher. She had a new sewing machine and wanted to try out the stitches so embroidered sewing themes and then stitched it into a wall quilt. Next to it is a little doll quilt made by my mother. She hand sews and hand quilts everything she makes. The fabrics in that little quilt are reproduction 30's prints. I cut 3 1/2" squares for her last summer and gave her a whole box full of them so she could work on them while visiting my dad at the Care Center. He always enjoyed seeing whatever she was working on and was so proud of her stitching.
In the children's area we hung this colorful A-B-C quilt made by Lavonne Beckman. Her daughter is Deb Hayes and between the two of them they shared six quilts. Deb does the machine quilting on their pieces.

And here is Jane with another sewing themed quilt she made. I liked the quilt because she used satin fabric for the "thread" on the spools so it made the quilt unique. Do you see the scissors, too? That guy walking into the picture is my brother, Doug. He didn't hear me say "Jane, let me take your picture" and got up from the table nearby and walked right into the picture. We all got a good laugh at that!
That's all for Friday.
The quilts in the City Hall will be posted Tuesday evening. There are four wonderful quilts that are historically tied to Lehigh. Check back and take a peek!

Back from Iowa and ready to blog again.......

I had a great time on my visit to my hometown of Lehigh, Iowa for their 125th Quasquicentennial event. I returned late last night but was too tired to do more than read some mail, say "hi" to my husband and the dog, then shower and get some much needed sleep! It was a busy four days but I really enjoyed every minute of it.

When I left on Thursday afternoon I had filled my car with quilts and everything I might need for the weekend (or more!) and headed out to Hwy. 169. I was only about ten miles down the road when the "low tire pressure" alarm and light went off. Since I've only had the car a few months, I didn't even know it had that feature but I was sure glad it did. I stopped at a Shell gas station in St. Peter where a friend of the guy who was working the counter came out and checked my tires for me (full service gas stations are the new dinosaurs of our time). He determined I had a slow leak in the right rear tire so he filled it with air and checked the other tires. Then I asked if he'd mind if I drove forward a bit to see if perhaps a nail was causing the slow leak. So I got in, drove ahead just a few inches and he hollered "yep, there it is." And there it was - a big roofing nail! So I had to make a detour into a Tires Plus store for a quick repair and only about an hour later, I was back on the road again. So, that was last Thursday. Later tonight I'll post the set-up for the quilt show at the 125th celebration. It was great fun!
The day before I left for Iowa, though, I was so busy that I never had time to post some pics that I wanted to share. Our crazy quilting group called "Tuesday Crazies" (because we meet on Tuesday's most of the time although sometimes on Wednesdays!!) was meeting at my friend Kate's house on Wednesday afternoon for a picnic. I wasn't about to miss it even if it meant I'd be up late packing that night. There are 7 of us in our group - Kate, Sue, Adella, Pandora, Carol, Lori, and me. Kate fixed burgers on the grill, had a big pot of baked beans, potato chips and really good lemonade for our lunch! Her grandaughter, Annika, was her "assistant" and made sure we all had fresh lemonade and plenty of food! It was all very yummy and then Kate topped it all off with that delicious looking tray of cookies you can see below that was baked by her daughter, Dana. They were so pretty, you hated to bite into them! Kate had hung quilts on the fence and it all looked so festive!!

Pictured above are Kate and Sue holding Sue's finished Christmas quilt. Last year we all traded Christmas blocks each month and Sue has already stitched her quilt together and machine quilted it! The rest of us still have a pile of squares waiting to become a quilt!!

Kate lives in the country so here is the pastoral view we enjoyed from our picnic spot. The cows were gathering for some water and shade from the sun.

While being outside was lovely, it had one "down-side" - the mosquitos!! They are way too abundant this year so we retreated indoors and enjoyed a couple hours of stitching and catching up on what we've all been doing the last couple of months. Oh, and it was an especially nice time for me because my birthday was earlier this month so everybody had gifts for me. It was a really sweet day!
Time to take a break. Back later tonight with more on the quilt show in Lehigh.

Thursday, June 19

Off to Iowa.......

I am headed to Iowa today leaving my hubby and Kaiser the Beagle behind. It's the big weekend for my hometown, Lehigh, Iowa - 125 years! I have packed my car with quilts and such for the quilt show I'll set up there with my cousin, Patty. My mom has quilts to share and so do some other ladies. I have the camera (and the charger) and so I will take lots of pictures. I will have great "show and tell" to share come next Monday and Tuesday. I think I have everything but better do a "once over" to make sure I haven't forgotten anything! Hope you all have a great weekend. Oh, and if you have extra time to sew for someone in need, check out to see how you can help flood victims.

Monday, June 16

Blog, blog, bloggin along............

So how many of you are old enough to remember that song about the robin that goes "bob, bob, bobbin along?" If you are, then you know the tune and can understand why it would fit the title of this post on my blog. And it's not just this blog that I am writing these days. Once I figured out how to do this, I realized it's a very useful thing. It really helps get the thoughts organized and gets information to those who need it. Last night in addition to posting here, I set up a new blog called "Sew and Share". Starting with the call from my sister last Friday morning I was trying to figure out how I might do something to help, to make a difference following the severe flooding in southeast Iowa. So I sent out a prayer request and also, a call for those who might be interested in doing some sewing for the flood victims. I asked those who were interested to reply with "Will sew and share" in the subject box. I had received 15 replies as of yesterday evening so I decided the time had come to get organized! I set up a blog describing what we could do. I waited til this morning to send the info because I wanted to set a sewing date and use the community room at City Hall on Saturday, July 12. I asked my Bible study friends if they would provide lunch and they said "yes" (well, actually Doris "spoke" for the group but we knew they'd all help out). So I finalized the info and sent the e-mail about the blog on it's way. If you want to know more about the project go to and you'll find everything you need to know about how you can lend a hand and make a difference to someone in need. All of those who responded are not just here in Minnesota. In fact only about half are from MN. There are stitchers from the east and west coast, northwest, southeast, etc. willing to sew and share. Additionally, Deb L. of California, asked if it would be a good thing to set up a yahoo group by the same name where we can post pattern files, links, more pictures, etc. Deb volunteered to set it up so when you go to the sewandshare blog, you'll find the link to the yahoo group. Check it out! Time to end my day at the computer. By the way, that song about the robin - just what is the title of that song?

Sunday, June 15

Happy Father's Day!

This is the first Father's Day without my dad. Last summer I made a point of going home on Father's Day weekend. I am so glad I did. It was the weekend of Lehigh River Days and I took both my mom and dad to see the parade. This photo of my Dad, Melvin, with the "Puzzle Quilt" was taken last summer. My dad purchased it at an auction and we called it the puzzle quilt because we couldn't figure out how it was made. It is triangles and the reverse of the quilt is the same as the front. I've since learned that one name for it is "Depression Quilt" and it is made by folding triangles and stitching them together in a chain, then sewing the chains together. My folks gave me this quilt for Christmas several years ago but I brought it home to have my dad's picture taken with it because he was the one who bought it.
When I first started my blog, I posted a large picture of him with the quilt because I couldn't figure out how to post smaller pictures. I feel like I have been going back to school these last few weeks and months as I have learned how to participate in on-line groups, load photos and files, start my own on-line group and a blog, too. I am learning the "old-fashioned way", by "trial and error"!!!
Earlier today, I sewed together a simple block flannel baby quilt. I was thinking of my dad as I sewed it, because I was my mom and dad's first child. My mother sewed baby clothes for me on an old treadle sewing machine that belonged to my Aunt Bell. I have it now, and while it works, it is more decorative and sentimental than it is functional. Anyway, sewing the baby quilt was theraputic. I love the soft feel of flannel and the pretty pastel colors. I'll finish the quilt in a few days and it will be a doorprize at the quilt show during my hometown's Sesquicentennial this coming weekend. And now I have to set down and make my list of "to do's" for the weekend so I will have to get off the computer for a bit and see to that. Night all!

Saturday, June 14

Flag Day and more......

The weather was beautiful here, perfect day for flying a flag. Only we don't have a flagpole but we're thinking about getting one. Our grass is beginning to grow and look like a real yard so next summer is when we'll add some landscaping touches and a flagpole would be a good addition. My mom is going to buy a flagpole for the front yard of the care center that my dad was at. It will be both in memory of him and in honor of his service in WWII. And it's a fitting tribute as his birthday was June 14th, Flag Day! He would have been 82 today. I called my mom earlier just to chat because this was a day that could make her feel blue but she was doing fine. The thing on all of our minds is the flooding in so many parts of Iowa and of special concern to us is the flooding in Iowa City as that's where my sister lives. She calls my mom to give her updates and then my mom calls me so we aren't tying up the phone lines and her time. As of now the church my sister and family attend is under about 4-5 feet of water and the veterinary clinic they own is expected to flood in the next day or so. I am pondering a plan to offer some help. I have to ponder the logistics a little more and then I'll post it. Looks like a little rain is coming our way again. Good for the grass and the garden but I wish it didn't give birth to so many mosquitos! More later.

Friday, June 13

Friday, the 13th!!!

It's been a busy day. Started with a phone call from my sister with an update on the flooding in the Iowa City area where they live. She asked if I would put out a call for prayer to my friends and I did. She sounded so tired. They have been moving items from their church to higher ground/storage and needed to find a truck and helpers to move all the equipment and animals from their veterinary clinic. Thankfully, they were successful! I talked to Dave, my brother-in-law just a bit ago and he was relieved that they had everything moved. The worst isn't over yet, though, as the river will not crest in Iowa City until perhaps Tuesday. I've got a plan for a way for some of who sew to lend a little of our talents and time to those who have lost so much. If you want to know how you can participate, check back later this weekend and I'll let you in on my plans. Time now to relax.

Thursday, June 12

Bumpy night.......

All day I stayed tuned to the weather as the weather forecast was for strong storms. A fairly good shower came through about 8:30 a.m. but then cleared away. My morning project was to finish printing the postcard invitations for our annual Linn Family Reunion (the 79th annual!). Finished them just before noon so decided I would go to Toody's Sweets and Treats for lunch and then drop off the postcards. Last Wednesday, my friend Doris treated me to lunch there and it was sooooooooo good. Same thing today! Then back home to work on a couple of flannel kids quilts that will be raffle prizes for a kid's fun day planned by the Scott/Carver Historical Societies later this month. All the blocks are cut and ready to stitch tomorrow. I finished that about 5:00 and that was when I could see the weather was getting "bumpy" in the southwest corner of the state. Tornado warnings were being issued as the storm worked it's way northeast. By 8:30 it had arrived here and then the sirens went off and about the same time daughter Collette called to see if I was in the basement and I said, "I'm headed there" and hung up. So Kaiser, our beagle and I went to the basement but silly Steve stayed upstairs. The sirens were blowing because of a tornado that touched down about 15 miles to the west of us. It was headed northeast and we never felt any effects from it but I was sure worried for awhile. All one has to do is watch the Weather Channel to see that it was a really "bumpy" night all the way from Kansas to Minnesota. Iowa took the brunt of it and with the flooding already going on, they did not need it. My mom was prepared to "hunker down" in the shower with blankets over her head if she had to take shelter from a storm. All I can think of is how tired all of those people must be who are coping with flooding issues. My sister and family are some of those people. I'll be saying a special prayer for all who are affected by the storms. Hope you are all well and safe.

Tuesday, June 10

Revisiting last Tuesday's quilts.......

Last Tuesday I told you all about some old quilts that I had the opportunity to view at our local historical society. I said I'd post pictures and never did. So here I am a week later on another Tuesday morning and I am finally posting the pictures. The quilts are very old and really worn and yet the patterns and fabrics still shine through. And the quilting stitches are still holding strong. They are a perfect example of "a legacy of stitches left behind".

Pictured above is a lovely crazy quilted wall quilt. I plan to go back on another day and study the stitches more carefully. The other picture is a trunk full of quilts that was of interest to me when I saw that beautiful wool tulip quilt!! It was made in the 1940's and is also one I'd like to study more.
The two pictures below are of a silk log cabin quilt. A close-up of the blocks revealed what at first glance was not noticeable - the tiny center of each block is two pieced triangles!

Arlene from the Sibley County Historical Society is pictured below with the two appliqued quilts. The very worn red and green quilt is from about 1825. Both quilts came to the museum from the same family. Enjoy the photos and be inspired!!!

Sunday, June 8

One tired Cookie.........

........and that's me! My grandson has been here this weekend and we were very busy so I am too tired to write about all that we did. I have so much to write about but it'll keep til tomorrow. Unless, I find that I am too tired to fall asleep, and I may have to get up and hit the keys to get all the thoughts out of my head! Til tomorrow, goodnight, Irene and all!

Wednesday, June 4

One more thought.......

and then I'm off to do some stitching. Just before I posted my previous quilt story, I had tallied time and spending for a certain popular quilt magazine (okay, it's Mark Lipinski's magazine, Quilter's Home and I hope he doesn't mind that I have mentioned it). Now I am not sure what the info will be used for but it was interesting to track the amount of time spent in computer chats/e-mails, piecing of quilts, reading, cleaning my sewing room, etc. The surprising thing for me was the amount of time I have spent on the computer the last few months (it was a lot of hours). In January, I began regular chats with members of a couple different groups and also began studying blogs, websites, and yahoo groups so that I might have my own blog, etc. one day. And here I am! When I sent the tally off to Mark, I told him how much I had enjoyed the exchange of group conversations and how during this time I got brave enough to set up my own blog and a yahoo group for penny rugs and wool projects. I would never have reached that point of setting up either if I had not first found Quilter's Home magazine. It was a real change from the typical quilting magazines on the rack. When I found that first issue with the blue sky, the green grass and the chairs with the quilts on them and the words "Quilter's Home" across the top, I was smitten. I've bought, and now subscribe to, every issue. That first issue was published about the time we were beginning to build our house, a place I often referred to as my "quilter's home" so as far as I was concerned this magazine was meant for me. I carried the magazines with me each time I went home to visit my folks and shared them with my mom. The only time the magazines haven't travelled with me was that last trip to Iowa for my dad's funeral. He was on my mind a lot this morning when I was looking at those old quilts. He would have loved to see them and to know that Arlene was sharing them with me. He had a way of saying "Yes, I have a daughter that's a quilter" that made me feel like he'd said I was a princess or something. Lucky me! And now I am off to get in some stitching time....................No chorus from the marsh pond tonight as it is too chilly to have the windows open. Only in Minnesota!!!

Tuesday, June 3

Finally, a quilt story.......

My morning got off to a great start when I got a call from Arlene at our county historical society reminding me to come down and check out a certain old quilt. So, I grabbed my camera and away I went. The Sibley County Historical Society is located in a beautiful old Victorian home and is brimming with county history. I was directed toward the attic where I was to find Arlene. She heard my voice and ushered me into a bedroom to show me the quilts. What a treat!! The first quilt was once a beautiful red and green applique quilt on cream. Then the second quilt was a blue applique with pink (or were they once red) flowers. Both were from the same family and date to around 1825 but they are very, very worn. In spite of that fact, they were still lovely and the quilting was very even. I took pictures which was okay but forgot to ask if I may post them here. I'll check on that and hopefully can post some pictures of them. I was short on time because I needed to get home to make a rhubarb cobbler for our afternoon Bible Study group. So, I thanked Arlene for letting me check out the quilts and I will go back another day to really study them and a few others.
Now to the rhubarb cobbler. It turned out perfectly as always because it was a recipe from my Grandma Goldie and no matter who makes it, it never fails. I'll add the recipe at the end of this post. Bible Study was at my friend Carolyn's. She is a young 93 and I asked her if it was okay if I brought the dessert for the afternoon. I didn't want to offend but she said she would never be offended if someone else wanted to cook/bake. I picked up some vanilla ice cream and with the cobbler fresh from the oven, it tasted "heavenly". :-) As always, we had good conversation over something good to eat, followed by a good lesson and discussion. My Bible study friends are a real treasure. They invited me into their group when we first moved here (Jan, '07) and treat me as if I have been with them forever - and most of them have been friends for more than 30 years!! As I was leaving, I noticed two tiny framed pieces by Carolyn's door. I asked if they were Valentines and she said, "no, they're old calling cards." I could picture them scanned onto fabric and used in my crazy quilt blocks so asked her if sometime I might borrow them to scan them. Generous soul that she is she said, "take them today and bring them back whenever you're done." What a treat today was - vintage quilts, vintage calling cards and wonderful friends! As usual, it's near the midnight hour as I write so time to relax with a little stitching before I head off to bed. I'll be dreaming of those quilts for sure!!

Monday, June 2

It's my birthday! ..........

....and I have had a very good day! My mom called to wish me a Happy Birthday this morning and wondered what I was planning for the day. I wasn't sure and she said she'd call later tonight to see what I did. We talked about the stormy weather. The midwest can't seem to get out of this rainy, stormy pattern. I like rain, though. It goes back to when I was a child. I loved rainy days because it meant you got to stay inside. It always made me feel cozy and I remember getting out the paper dolls when my sister Judy and I were younger and when I was older it was a good book, especially any Nancy Drew mystery!
So, thinking of that good feeling that comes with memories of growing up, I decided to drive over to Gaylord, county seat here, and visit the Dueber's Variety Store. I love a good, old-fashioned variety store. When I was a kid, I loved a stop at the "Dime Store". Newberry's, Woolworth's, they had everything you could need and more! And the candy counter!! Wow! You could stroll along and look into the glass cases and see every good candy there was available at the time. I always chose chocolate covered peanuts. I remember that when we would go to visit my Grandpa and Grandma there was always candy in the cupboard. My grandpa would ask us if we'd like some candy and would go to the cupboard and pull out a couple of small white paper sacks. One bag usually had chocolate stars and the other those peanut butter bar things or orange slices. He would give some to each of us kids and Grandma always said "now, Thurman, you'll spoil their appetite!" I don't think it ever did. So, visiting a dime store/variety store is like visiting my grandma and grandpa even though both have been gone for several years. I found a few pieces of fabric today and some old-fashioned satin covered hangers on clearance but sadly there's no candy counter anymore.
From the variety store, I headed back to town to have lunch at Toody's Sweets on Main Street in Henderson. My quilting friend, Pat, was there having lunch and I joined her. Nice visit. I came home to find a happy birthday message on the phone from my son, Devlin. Later on my daughter Collette called. She brought me a really fun gift last Friday - a gift card to Dollar Tree stores. For those of you who know me well, you know I love the Dollar store. I think I have bought almost every supply needed for my retreats at the dear old Dollar store! My mom called again and I told her what a good day I had. She's doing pretty well now.
I spent most of the afternoon and evening on the computer working on a project for my Wooly Buddies group. I am having "sew" much fun learning how to make the best use of the computer/internet but there is so much more I need to know! I want to post some more pictures here on my blog but instead I am going to sit down and do some stitching on a crazy quilting piece. Once again the crickets, frogs, etc. are singing their night song! I love it. Where we lived before, the night song couldn't be heard for all the traffic noise! I am off to stitch..................

Sunday, June 1

A beautiful day in the neighborhood.....

and that it was!!! We had perfect weather here today, beautiful clouds, no humidity - a great start to the month of June. Well, except for the mosquitos. For some reason, there is a bumper crop of mosquitos this spring. It is difficult to remain outside for even short amounts of time as they swarm and bite before you can bat them away. I tried to sit on the front porch and enjoy the nice afternoon but had to give up. The mosquitos were successful in biting me but I was not successful in enjoying time on the front porch. Oh, well, the rest of the weekend was really enjoyable as we had a very nice time with our friends Thomas and Ilse and their grandson, Mikkel. On Friday, my Steve took Thomas and Mikkel to the Minnesota Zoo while I took Ilse to quilt shops. When Ilse was here last spring we visited Quilter's Mercantile in Mankato. This year I took her to Eagle Creek Quilt Shop in Shakopee and on to The Sampler in Chanhassen. At each shop we found a couple of small items of interest but we both remarked that at neither shop did we see a "must-have" fabric. Now this is not the fault of either shop as both had loads of bolts of fabric and both shops carry very different fabrics. Instead, it's more of a fabric design issue. And perhaps, the fact that we both have a ton of fabric has made us realize we just don't need anymore. Not likely. Something will come along and we'll find it's the perfect fabric for that certain quilt. Ilse also has more available to her as she once owned Marienhoff Gaarden, a quilt shop/business in Denmark that is now owned and operated by her son. Check it out at
For dinner Friday evening, I made the suggestion that we go to Pizza Ranch because there would be a variety of fun American semi-fast pizza and chicken, etc. We arrived to find the place packed. We finally got a table and had a great evening recalling trips and adventures we went on over the past 15 or so years. I'll share more on that at a time when I can upload some photos, plus more "quilt talk" that Ilse and I shared. South Dakota is the next stop on their "see the USA trip". Having never been to South Dakota, I am thinking I would like to add it to my "someday want to do this" list. I've been lots of other places - 35 states and 15 countries. I figured it up this past winter. Our travels figure heavily into the story of my quilts. Typing this blog is helping me to organize those thoughts and I will get to that story yet. Time now, though, to close and say...........Sweet dreams on this lovely summer night!
"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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