Thursday, July 31

Lucky day!

Wow! I posted my first Giveaway yesterday and this morning I checked my e-mail and found I won the Giveaway at Mr. Monkeysuit blog. How cool is that?!!! I will soon be the delighted owner of a little Elsie Pocket cupcake! Thank you, Thank you!! I needed a day-brightener and that was it.
An hour after that a big thunderstorm came through and we were without power the rest of the morning. Had to do some laundry and cleaning today so never really got to much sewing. But I did do some sketching and made plans for projects I'll offer this fall so that counts in the creativity catagory! Come September when it's "back-to-school-time for the kids", it'll be "back to quilting and stitching" for all of us (no, I don't have any kids that go off to school anymore but my grandson does and to me, September just plain means "back-to-school"!!). Be sure to check in every once in a while to see what's new. I may set up a separate site (another blog or a website) for the patterns I'll offer but will keep you posted. If you're checking in for my Giveaway be sure to post a comment on my July 30th post about it. I'm going to find a basket tomorrow that will hold the 25 items that someone will win. I might post a peek at the basket just to get the interest rolling. I do prizes really well. ;-) My quilting friends and retreat guests can vouch for that!!

Wednesday, July 30

Time for a GIVEAWAY!!!

Okay, I am thinking it is time to celebrate and do a GIVEAWAY! I have a plan for a basket full of goodies for one lucky winner. Leave me a comment between August 1 and noon of August 25th. I will draw a lucky winner for the basket of goodies at midnight on the 25th (CST) and will promptly post the name. You will need to check in to see if you have won but you'll have til August 31 to e-mail me your snail mail address so that I can send the basket off to you (the giveaway is open to anyone - U.S. and International - that leaves me a comment).

So what's the celebration? Well, I am having a great deal of fun doing the blogging thing, plus it's my mother's birthday on August 25th - that's her in the picture holding a teacup pincushion I made for her birthday last year, plus many of my friends sent her cards and fabric. She really enjoyed that but can't use anymore fabric, so in honor of her birthday and the fact that she taught me to sew and embroider, I will give away a basket of items drawn from my vintage stash of fabrics and patterns, plus my current stash of fabrics and patterns. So are you wondering what might be in the basket? Well, I will start with a few blocks of feedsack fabric on August 1st, then every day for the next 24 days I will add something new to the basket such as a vintage pattern or two, fabrics, vintage trims, perhaps a special pincushion, a little wool, thread, a tiny kit, etc. etc. etc. It's kind of like a mystery quilt where you don't know what it will be until it's finished, only this will be a "Mystery Basket of Goodies". This could be fun! Be sure to tell your blogging friends to join. The more the merrier!

Tuesday, July 29

30's blocks are done!

Some late night stitching allowed me to get caught up on these quilt blocks for a project I want to do at our retreat weekend. My suitcase of 30's fabrics and projects is ready to go and the retreat is still two weeks away! I am determined to sew the quilt tops together and come away with three finished tops ready for quilting. We will see, won't we?

When the quilt top is finished, I will add little button eyes and pretty bows to the Calico Cat and the Gingham Dog.

So many things on my mind.......

Ever have times when there is so much on your mind that you can't think straight? That is me these days. I have had at least three "oops!" moments in the last two days alone but I just regrouped and it's all right now. I'll finish up the last of my thoughts on my recent trip to Iowa and perhaps that will help clear some of the cobwebs in this old brain.
It's only been a week since I returned from Iowa. I mentioned that there are certain points along the way that are favorites. I'll post my favorite spot along Hwy 169 tomorrow but here are some spots that I always look for.
If you find yourself on 169 just north of Algona (Iowa), you'll see the sign for Country Peddler. It's a thrift shop and on more than one occasion, I've stopped there and come out with a good buy. This time, I found some old laces, some pretty beads, some teacups that can become pincushions and an old prom dress that will find it's way into some crazy quilting blocks!

North of Algona is the little town of Burt and I've passed this little replica (about 6-7 feet tall) of the Burt Elevator for years but never stopped to take a picture. This time, I had to stop. It would be easy to think it's the real thing.

Then there's this tree that stands alone in a field south of Elmore, MN. I love that the tree wasn't cut down when they planted the field.
During the summer months The Cedar Inn is my favorite place to stop for lunch or supper. If I can't time it right to eat there on the way down, I make sure it's my stop on the way back. I love a good, old-fashioned Drive-In!! Oh, and this one is in Blue Earth, MN. It was early that day when I stopped and I was the only one there but usually the parking spots are full of people who stop by for ice cream, malts, burgers and more. I highly recommend it!!

And thoughts of food make me realize it is time to think of what to fix for supper. I'll post some quilt blocks later this evening. I am caught up on the 30's blocks I need to take to the retreat that is coming up soon. The cobwebs are clearing. More thoughts later.

Our 79th Linn Family Reunion!!!

I need to catch up on posts I intended to post!! Yesterday, I was going to post about our reunion that was held last Sunday in Iowa but that annoying backache I had kept me from feeling comfortable doing anything! Lots of time on the heating pad helped as did a little ibuprofen. Finally today, I felt better. So, now, though, I am behind which for me is the norm so what am I worrying about!!! Better late than never works for me although sometimes too late is just plain too late. More on that bit of philosophy later. Right now, I want to tell you about our 79th Linn Family Reunion. Our family members, the descendants of F.M. Linn, have been gathering since 1929 to hold an annual reunion every summer. It's great fun and every year someone shows up that hasn't been to the reunion in years and it is fun just to watch them catch up on family stories and look at family photos. This year it was my cousin Terry (on the right) and his wife Kas (on the left) from Illinois. Gus Linn is in the center and his niece (who is Terry's sister so also my cousin) is to his right. Kathy came from Florida so if we had a prize for "longest distance" she would have won.
As kids, my mother and dad took us to the reunions but as I got older, married and moved away, I seldom found time to attend the reunions. I reconnected a couple of years after our son graduated from high school. As empty nesters, I was anxious to return home to visit with cousins, aunts and uncles that I seldom saw when visiting my folks. That was in 1996. That same year, my cousin Betty asked for a volunteer to take on the job of mailing the postcards and keeping the reunion going. I volunteered because while I wasn't living in Iowa, I figured I could easily mail postcards from Minnesota and keep us all connected. It's probably one of the most rewarding things I have ever volunteered to do. And it's not difficult work! Just send out the cards, reserve the shelter at the ballpark, and then wait to see who comes! Oh, and the food. We do food really well as you can see in the picture below. We have joked that we should do a cookbook. If you haven't had a family reunion in a while, I encourage you to set a date, send out some cards, and see who comes and what delicious dish they'll bring!!

That's my cousin, Betty, on the left and on the right is my Aunt Loretta (my dad's sister). Betty guided the reunion for many years, my mother did it for a couple of years and Betty's mother Ophelia kept it going for a number of years. They were all ladies of the United Brethren Church in Lehigh and as much as they stitched quilts together they also stitched our lives together with soup suppers, bake sales, and picnics and reunions. What great times they were!!!
In addition to good food, my cousin Charlotte (1st cousin to my dad) is really into genealogy and our family history. Every summer she brings new boards that have pictures and the names, birth and death dates of our family members. Pictured below is just one of several boards she has prepared!

In the photo on the right, you can see all the boards that Charlotte has done. That's her on the left in the photo, my mother, Mary is in the center and Pat Conklin on the right and her husband Dale on the left.
We had a great afternoon of sharing food, photos, lots of stories and lots of laughter all about the years we all spent growing up in Lehigh, Iowa. Not much is left of the Main Street in Lehigh. The clay company closed long ago and with it went the business that kept the town going. But it's still home and, for me, it was the best little town in Iowa when I was a kid. While buildings and people come and go, though, the river remains much the same. Here's a picture taken from the bridge looking south.
You can see debris that has piled up due to the high flood waters of the past months. If you're ever in Lehigh ask somebody to tell you the story of the helicopter that crashed during an ice jam several years ago. There are lots of stories in Lehigh. I am working hard at trying to collect them so I can write a little book and preserve them. And that brings me to that little bit of philosophy about "sometimes too late is too late". Many of our family stories are lost when members pass on. I taped my dad and my grandma and grandpa but how I wish that I had taped even more conversations. So, if there's a story in your family or town, get it recorded or write it down now. Make sure it's not too late.
That's all for tonight.

Saturday, July 26

From a stormy Saturday to a sunny Saturday....

Back to more pictures from my trip to Iowa. The photo below was taken as severe storms gathered over the area of Webster City, Iowa. The sun was shining in such a way that it made the storm clouds look like there were aglow with fire! Fortunately no major damage occurred as a result of that storm. A local outdoor concert had to be rain delayed but it didn't stop the dedicated music fans from waiting out the storm!! That night my mom and I went through more photo albums and I pulled some things for the family reunion that was held on Sunday (last week).

And now it's a week later, I'm back in Minnesota and only just a few showers have popped up here today. Otherwise it's been sunny and gorgeous. My grandson, Jacob, arrived for an overnight and while we usually plan a project, this time he played car games on the computer while I put my aching back to the heating pad. Not sure what I did but it started a couple days ago with not being able to stand up after sitting, then just pain in my lower back. So our plans to do some painting will wait til he visits again in August. We did take a quick trip down to Toody's Sweets and Treats for an ice cream cone and a bit of playtime for him at the park. The day really was a perfect summer day.

Jacob has gone to bed now and I am going to gather up my embroidery and sew a few "fine seam or two" before I go to bed.
Sleep tight this lovely night!!

Friday, July 25

Easter, 1957

I am so excited because my husband just showed me how to take my black and white pictures, scan them into photo shop and bingo! here's one of my favorites!!! This is so cool! I have so many photos of my brother, sister and me in clothes that my mother made for us. My dad once said that he was always so proud to walk down the street with Ma and us kids and there we were, wearing clothes she had sewn and sometimes she had made a dress for herself to match our dresses. You can see where I got my sewing skills. Mother was an excellent seamstress!

So, that's me on the right (almost 8 years old) and in the middle is my sister, Judy (just turned 5). Our little brother, Doug, is on the left. He was just a couple months away from his third birthday in this picture and, in fact, today is his birthday. I called him earlier to wish him a Happy Birthday! He doesn't look all that happy in this picture, does he? I'm thinking that might be because we were all dressed to head off to Sunday School and he would rather have been playing in the dirt with his cars and trucks!
Today started off with a welcome rain shower and you could almost see the grass turning green when the sun came out. I went grocery shopping in the afternoon and that's about as exciting as it got around here today. Who knew that the most exciting thing of the day would be learning how to scan in my black and white photos!
Have a wonderful, colorful, sunny weekend!!

Thursday, July 24

Aunt Bell's Butterfly Quilt

In my post about the quilt show at the Lehigh Library, I included a picture of my mother with her quilt from Aunt Bell. While I was home this time, I took a few pictures of my favorite butterflies on the quilt and placed it on the bed so you could see the compete layout of the quilt. Here is a close-up of one of my favorite butterflies on the Quilt.

My mother still has the original brown paper pattern piece that my Aunt Bell used to cut out the butterflies. This Butterfly quilt is a combination of Aunt Bell's stitching and my mother's handwork, too. Aunt Bell embroidered all the blocks and then sometime in the 50's my mother set the blocks into the pattern you see on the bed. I realized when I placed the quilt on the bed that my mother used the solid butterflies for the quilt center. I couldn't find any two butterflies that were alike. Some were florals, some stripes, some geometric patterns. The blocks were likely stitched in the 1930's to 1940's.

This quilt is one of four quilt items that belonged to my Aunt Bell. The Butterfly quilt goes to my brother, Doug. My sister, Judy, has a double wedding ring quilt top that she had quilted several years ago. I have two tops - one was a twin-size small block nine patch quilt that was made by Granny Blair, Aunt Bell's mother-in-law. When our son was little I backed the quilt top with an old soft white sheet and just tied it, then bound it with some vintage polka dot fabric. It was his favorite quilt when he wasn't feeling well. I have a beautiful Trip Around the World quilt top that has never been put to the quilting frame. One day perhaps I'll set up the frame and turn that quilt top into the real thing - a quilt!
My Aunt Bell was more like a Grandma to us as she raised my mother from the age of about six years old. My mother's mother passed away during the depression when my mom was just three years old. She had 8 brothers and sisters and her father tried to keep the family together but it wasn't easy. Finally, my mother was sent from her home in Missouri to live with Aunt Bell (her mother's sister) and Uncle John. Her younger sister, Edyth was sent to live with an Aunt in Chicago. My mother has been writing down the stories of her life as a little girl and maybe one day they'll become a little book. It is really interesting to read. I'll tell you more about my mother, Aunt Bell, my Grandma Goldie and more as I add to my blog day by day.
It's a quiet afternoon here, very overcast and hopefully, rain is going to fall!! We need it.

Off to Iowa and back again...........

I took a little break and went home to Iowa for a family reunion and a visit with my mom. Had a great weekend, although thunderstorms rolled through every night! I love thunderstorms but not when the wind comes with it them. Here's a little glimpse of the trip .................

I have headed south on Hwy. 169 so many times that if there was an "auto-pilot" feature on my car it would know the way!! Certain spots along the route are favorites and I was reminded of this when I had to stop for construction. This is a view out my window as I waited for the one way road to clear so our line of traffic could pass. It's just a cornfield near Burt, Iowa but is that sky pretty or what? And look at that great field of corn!! On my return trip, I took a few photos of those favorite spots I pass on Hwy. 169 and will share them with you in a couple of days.

As I mentioned, there were storms off and on all weekend. My mom and I went shopping later Friday afternoon and here were some clouds building up in the sky. Notice the sign on the right. Yep, we were at the Dollar Store.
On our drive home, we took the "scenic route" and drove past the place where the old farmhouse sat that we lived in when my sister and I were little girls. All that's left is a field of corn and in place of the house and outbuildings there are two new tin grain bins. No reason to take a picture there but...................

........... a little further down the road was the spot where a little green house sat and it was where we lived when I was a baby (pictured above). It's still a beautiful place and there are wildflowers growing all over the lot. The house is long gone but it was fun to hear my mom tell about living there and of how kind the neighbors were to our young family.

With storms, of course, comes hot weather so we had to make a stop at the Nifty Fifty's Ice Cream shop.

That's Penny behind the counter. She delivered up a hot fudge sundae for me that was huge even though I ordered a small one! And for my mom, it was a bowl of "Twist" - vanilla and chocolate from the ice cream machine. It was deeeeeelicious!!
Later on, we looked at pictures from the quilt show held at the library last month. I got out the Butterfly quilt that my mom shared and took a closer look at it. It would be a fun one to recreate. I'll post pics of it tomorrow. Til then, sweet dreams................

Wednesday, July 16

Quilts at Bittersweet Cafe......

Located on Main Street in Henderson is a wonderful little establishment called "Bittersweet Cafe" owned by Lisa Steinborn. She makes the best soup and sandwiches, oh, and coffee and such, too! Back in March, I asked Lisa, if she would like to have a quilt to hang in the back area of her fine establishment. She was thrilled and so I took her the quilt that is pictured below. It's a bow tie quilt and by the fabrics used, I suspect it's from the early 1950's. The quilt was bought at auction in Boone, Iowa by my mother and dad and I bought it from them. I love it!
Before I took the quilt to Lisa last winter, I thought I should take a photo of it and that was when I discovered a funny thing. Sometimes through the camera lens we see things that aren't so obvious to our own eyes. That was the case here. As I looked through the lens, I noticed that one block was turned the opposite of all the other bow ties. You can see it if you look carefully. It's in the sixth row down on the right and the second block in - turgoise and plaid! (You can click on the photo to enlarge.) Now do you suppose that the quilter who made the quilt did that on purpose? Many a quilter knows that there were quilters who purposely turned a block so as not to make a "perfect" quilt because it was believed only God was perfect. I have a bad habit of turning blocks by accident or cutting them wrong, so I have to do a little fudging and I certainly never have to worry about making a "perfect" quilt!
Anyway, today I went to Bittersweet to take Lisa a different quilt, a pretty Dresden plate with a scalloped edge and bound with a soft orange cotton binding. Every couple of months I'll bring her another old quilt to hang, so if you're passing through Henderson stop in and have lunch, then check out the quilt on the back wall!

There's not been much time to sew these last few days because I have been so busy with the "Sew and Share" project, but I do try to squeeze in a little embroidery work each night. Time for some right now! I was hoping for a little rain and thunder to accompany my stitching and to water the garden tonight but I don't think it will happen. Perhaps it will rain tomorrow and that will be fine. I am done taking pictures to post on the "Sew and Share" blog so I don't need the sun tomorrow! I'm off to stitch now.
Night all!..................

Monday, July 14

A quick post..........

I just finished posting on the "Sew and Share" blog all about our great day of sewing but I wanted to take just a few minutes and post the second applique block in my 30's quilt project. I am keeping up with my "self imposed deadline" of doing three blocks each week (just the applique part as the blocks were already sewn last summer). Next blocks are the Rose applique blocks.

Busy day tomorrow so that's all for tonight. Sleep tight!!

Wednesday, July 9

Busy as a Bee with details for "Sew and Share"!!!

I had to take just a few minutes to post that I am almost too busy with details for "Sew and Share" to take time to post! There is a lot of coordinating that makes this kind of thing happen!
I had planned to post to the "Sew and Share" blog last night but needed answers to some questions before I could post some final details. And today, I got the answers, so tonight I will post an update on the "Sew and Share" blog. However, there are no questions about the good food that we will be eating for lunch on Saturday. It was my turn to host Bible Study group yesterday and after we were finished, everyone coordinated what dish or dessert they will bring. It will be a feast!! Speaking of food, here's a picture of the dessert I concocted for us yesterday.

It was really tasty and starts with a crust made of crushed Chocolate Chex, then a pudding mix that uses a carton of whipping cream and it was really good!! I need to make it one more time as the crust wasn't quite right (too crumbly, think it needed more butter) and then I will post the recipe. Our Bible Study group meets every Tuesday afternoon and starts with dessert and conversation for an hour and then an hour on a chapter in a book of Bible studies. We have lively conversations and enjoy our time together!!

As time goes by, I will tell you more about the group. We are all excited for Saturday to come and see how many quilts, totes, etc. we can stitch, tie and finish for the Iowa flood victims.

This evening I will finish stitching on the tulip blocks that will go in the 30's quilts I am making. I will post them later tonight. I decided I will offer a couple of free block projects in the coming months so stay tuned for details!! After we get through our Saturday of sewing, I will get back to some of my own projects. Hot as it is outside, I am really anxious to work on some wool quilt blocks and penny rugs. Even though I had planned to do that today there'll be plenty of time for that next week.

Sunday, July 6

Wow! 90 degrees and humid!

Shortly after I returned from church this morning we decided to wash our cars. It was midday and the sun was high in the sky. Seemed like a good thing to do. But, oh, was it hot and the air was really heavy. We both we're beginning to wonder why we thought it was a good idea to wash the cars. We took a couple of "cold drink" breaks and that helped. And now the cars are all clean, and we're exhausted. I fixed a bit of lunch and now it's time to relax. Steve is watching (napping) racing and I am going to sew!
Rain is hopefully headed our way. The grass is so dry that our dog Kaiser is not fond of where he has to walk in the vacant lots near our house. That's him in the picture below. It was taken a little over a week ago right after they had mowed and baled the alfalfa. Looks more green then than it does now.
Kaiser is truly a house dog and doesn't like walking on the cut stalks nor does he like getting his feet wet and when it snows, well, he tries to walk on one paw so he can keep his paws from getting cold and wet! Right now he is sleeping quite soundly in my sewing chair, his favorite place to be! He'll soon have to surrender it to me! Later all!

Saturday, July 5

Somebody has a birthday today!

And it's my son, Devlin. I called him yesterday to wish him a Happy 4th and then a Happy day on the 5th. His girlfriend, Stacia, was preparing potato salad for a barbecue that they are going to do with friend's this evening. I am happy that they will have a good time with friends. Perhaps later on this evening I'll write more but thought I'd post just a bit before I go off to fix supper.

Last evening we went down to Toody's Sweets for an ice cream cone and then I worked on a crazy quilt piece that will eventually go to my son. I tried to sit on the porch and sew but it was toooooooo sunny. It was not too sunny to just sit there and eat ice cream, though! :-) Anyway, it's a piece done in patriotic colors that I started about three years ago. All the pieces were pinned in place and I had begun to stitch them in place when it got laid aside and well, it's a year since I last stitched on it. Do you have projects like that? Here's a picture of what it looks like now that the stitching is done. It's ready to be embellished with fancy stitches, buttons and trims. My goal is to finish it by Election Day and I'll embroider the date on it on that day. The piece measures 16 x 20" and I plan to frame it under glass.

I am also posting a pic of the fabric postcard that I sent him for his birthday. In celebration of his birthday, if you e-mail me, I will send you a fabric postcard, too. However, it will most likely have a sewing theme unless this happens to be your birthday, too! The deadline to let me know if you want one was midnight tonight, but I'll extend it to midnight Monday night, July 7th just in case you were out of town and won't be reading this til you return.

I'll write more later tonight. Hope you are enjoying the weekend!!

Friday, July 4

Happy 4th of July!!!

I hope you are all enjoying the day!!! It's very quiet here in our neighborhood. Some have traveled to be with family while others are just enjoying some quiet time at home - like we are. Just like I said, we are relaxing and enjoying it! Actually, we're both working in our separate "creative domains". I am here in my sewing room where I was working on a project until I decided to set down at the computer for a bit. My husband is in his workshop installing ceiling lights which is the last step to finish in his work area before he starts working on an old car that he will be restoring (more on that another day). We are never bored as we both have a long list of projects "to do"!
I hung a couple of my quilts on the porch railing to add a little patriotic spirit to the front of the house. This one shown below is one of 12 seasonal/monthly quilts that I designed and stitched in 2000. This was the quilt for June and I made it with my Dad in mind as his birthday was Flag Day, June 14. And by getting it done in June that year, it was ready to hang on the 4th of July.

These two small wallhangings are from the same pattern. I drew the design in the summer of 2001 during the weekend of the 4th of July while I was thinking of my son's birthday coming up on the 5th of July. I made the cotton version first and taught it as a class through Prior Lake community ed.
Then in 2003, I made a version in woolfelt that I could send to National Nonwovens for a display in their booth at market.

I embroidered the words "Stars and Stripes Forever" on both quilts in Perle cotton. It shows up well when you see the quilt "for real" but doesn't show up well in photos. There's probably some feature on my camera that would help with that but I haven't figured it out if there is!!!

Now sometime this weekend, I am going to master putting patterns into PDF format and when I do I will celebrate and post this pattern for free for a limited time.

Here's to a great Independence Day! - Stars and Stripes Forever! - Land of Liberty! and God Bless America!!

Thursday, July 3

Relaxing and surfing the net...........

Ahhhhh, I can relax. I have had a hectic schedule of late and today I fulfilled one major committment and now I am going to relax for the whole weekend! Last night, I dutifully worked on the two chick blocks and finished the embroidery on them this morn. Then just before I went to bed, I made a fabric postcard for someone special. Can't say who yet as that would spoil the surprise. However, the day before that, I had made a quick postcard for a swap that I signed up for and I was so pleased with how it turned out that I thought - gotta make more! And I could make a lot more as I picked up a roll of that stiff interfacing stuff at our local thrift shop for just $2 last year!! They go together really quickly and make fun cards to send to friends and family.

So here's a challenge. Anyone who is reading this between now and Saturday, July 5th - leave a comment and I will send you a fabric postcard. I'll reply back to you and get your snail mail address. Why do this? Well, I am inspired by all the blogs that are out there that are so enjoyable and so creative. I found one this evening and even registered for a free "Give Away!" that Red Geranium Cottage is offering. You'll find it on my list of "Blogs that make me smile". I decided it was time to make a list of the blogs I regularly visit and a few websites, too. Check them out as they run the gamut of quilting, crafting, cooking, reflection and fun!

Earlier I mentioned "a major committment" that I fulfilled today and that was to prepare a program for our Women's Guild at church. I presented a program that focused on our given names and their meaning. I made bookmarks for everyone and printed a gardening poem on the front, then on the back added their name and it's meaning. I read their names and the meaning and then everyone exchanged bookmarks and had to write something special about the other person and read to the group what they had written. It is really interesting to hear what other people see in us and can be very encouraging, uplifting to the person they wrote about. It's a simple thing but very personal and gratifying to know that others enjoy your smile, or your laugh, or appreciate all you do for others. This can work in a book club, quilting group, any gathering of friends. I did it at a retreat several years ago as an "ice breaker" and it worked really well.

No pictures tonight although if my camera could have caught the image there would be one of the glorious red, pink and blue cotton candy sky that was tonight's sunset. Picture that!!! Even my husband was impressed!!

Have a glorious, family-fun, safe and great food for all Independence Day!!!

Wednesday, July 2

Goldie's Chickens.....

Here it is, my chicken block. I promised a chicken story to go with it and here it is. It's not much of a story, just a couple of memories related to chickens.

I have a thing for chickens. My kitchen in our old house was decorated from top to bottom with chicks and chickens. When we moved here to the new house I decided it was time for a change and went with a "minimal apple theme". The chick decor is still packed in a box but sometime later this summer they'll come out of their box and I am going to hang them in my laundry room. I still like the chicks it's just that after 33 years of a bright yellow kitchen and all those chicks, I thought it was time for a change. It's interesting that I like chicks and chickens for my earliest memory of chickens was not a good encounter.
We lived in the country about 3 miles from my Grandma Goldie and Grandpa Thurman. I figure I must have been about 4 years old and there was a family gathering at the old farmhouse where we lived. I remember sitting in a sandbox (or sandpile/dirtpile) and I was eating whatever was on my plate when the chickens decided to take a liking to me. And that's all I can remember. I think I was scared but if I was, would I have bought or made all those chickens over the years?? Then there was the time I was walking barefoot in the back yard and stepped on a chicken bone (probably left there by our dog) and I ended up at Doc Kiesling's office to have it removed. That was painful enough that, again, you'd think I wouldn't like chickens. But my grandma Goldie had chickens, lots of chickens in a coop out near the barn on their farm. I remember it was always warm in there and smelled slightly awful. However, those fluffy white feathered critters laid great eggs that ended up in cakes and goodies, and then sometimes they became Sunday dinner. Recently I asked my son if he could remember ever having "real" fried chicken and I wasn't talking about the Colonel. He can't recall having it so I promised that later this summer, I will try to cook up some "real" fried chicken like my Grandma Goldie made. I especially like baby chicks because they are so cute, kind of like kittens. Both are soft and cuddly, if not a little squirmy. So that's all there is to my chicken memories but it's because of them that I decided I had to add a chick to the quilt blocks I am making. There will also be a Calico cat, a Gingham dog, a tulip and a rose block along with nine-patch, pinwheel, etc. blocks. I am making three identical quilts - one that will be for me and one that will be for my brother, Doug, and one for my sister, Judy. And now if they should read this they will know what will come their way in a few months. I chose 30's prints because they are the fabrics that remind me so much of the years when we were growing up. I've said it before and I'll say it again - I can see the Ladies Aid group stitching on those quilts in the '50's and the fabrics they were using were scraps from the 30's and 40's and they were just wonderfully colorful!! My quilts I am making will be crazily colorful and I hope they make my brother and sister smile when they see the quilts. I am headed to a retreat in August where I plan to sew all the blocks together but before that I must finish the stitching around each of the appliques. So, with one chick done, I better get to stitching so I can finish the other two so I can stay on schedule! There's more to the story so come back again...............

Tomorrow was here and another day is on the way...

Okay, so I had every good intention of posting the picture of my chicken block and telling my chicken story. However, I have spent most of my time today on details for the "Sew and Share" project so this "chick" is now short on time and needs to get to bed for a few "peeps" of sleep. I need to take the pictures of the block anyway and my eyes are too tired for that one more task tonight. Tomorrow is another day and only just a few hours away!!!
"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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