Monday, April 30

Good Monday Morning!!

Tomorrow is May Day and just in case you'd like to make a May Basket for your mom, your daughter, grandchild, friend, etc., I thought I'd present a "re-run" of my May Basket Tutorial that I shared in 2010. I will be making a couple of May Baskets this afternoon as they don't take long to make and they make people smile! 
To see some different color variations of the May Baskets, you can go to this post.....


To learn how to make the May Baskets, go here for Part 1 and for Part II go here

And, just a reminder ........... if you want to register for a chance to win a copy of Marie*Bostwick's newest book in her Cobbled Court series, then just go to my post from last Thursday and there is still time to enter.  Go here and leave a comment.  A winner will be drawn on May 2nd. Plus, there is still time to enter at the other blogs that are participating. Just hop over to Michele's Quilting Gallery Blog for the complete list, right here and you will find nine more blogs which means nine more chances to win!

That's all for today. My "What's on the line?" feature will be back sometime in mid-May. Here's wishing you a Good Monday Morning!!!

Thursday, April 26

"Ties That Bind" Book Blog Hop

The winner of Marie's book "Ties That Bind" is Anett at House of Mouse!

Welcome to my blog, one of two stops on today's blog hop for Marie*Bostwick's new book..............

"Ties That Bind"

When Michele at Quilting Gallery contacted me about the blog hop and the opportunity to read the book, I was thrilled. I knew by the title that I would love the book. And when I read the synopsis, I could hardly wait to receive the book! Here's what got me so excited.............

Christmas is fast approaching, and New Bern, Connecticut, is about to receive the gift of a new pastor, hired sight unseen to fill in while Reverend Tucker is on sabbatical. Meanwhile, Margot Matthews' friend, Abigail, is trying to match-make even though Margot has all but given up on romance. She loves her job at the Cobbled Court Quilt Shop and the life and friendships she's made in New Bern; she just never thought she'd still be single on her fortieth birthday.
It's a shock to the entire town when Phillip A. Clarkson turns out to be Philippa. Truth be told, not everyone is happy about having a female pastor. Yet despite a rocky start, Philippa begins to settle in—finding ways to ease the townspeople's burdens, joining the quilting circle, and forging a fast friendship with Margot. When tragedy threatens to tear Margot's family apart, that bond—and the help of her quilting sisterhood—will prove a saving grace. And as she untangles her feelings for another new arrival in town, Margot begins to realize that it is the surprising detours woven into life's fabric that provide its richest hues and deepest meaning.

The book arrived in my mailbox just two days before I was scheduled for a surgery (ovarian cyst). It was great to pack it in my bag and know that I could read it as I recovered. And I did! That first evening after the morning's surgery and my husband had returned home, I picked up the book and began to read. I only read one chapter that night but the next day, I read a little more. It helped keep my mind off the pain. By the third day, I had a hard time putting the book down! Ah, but I'm getting ahead of the questions!  ........ read on.........

    1. What drew you into the book? The title was the first thing that drew me in. I love the old hymn "Blest Be the Ties that Bind". It was the first thing I thought of when I read the title and recalled it was the hymn sung at our daughter Collette's wedding in 1995.  The book had a quilting theme so that was the second thing to draw me in and then........we have a female pastor at our church, Pastor Brigit. And before she began, our interim pastor was Pastor Kathy, and she was a quilter!! I could really relate to the women in this book!
    2. Which character did you identify with? I didn't really "identify" with any one character. All of the characters felt "real" to me if that makes any sense.
    3. If this is the first book of the series that you have read - will you be reading the rest now?   This was the first of Marie's books that I have read. I will definitely read all of her other books. :-)
    4. In 5 words or less state why someone NEEDS to read this novel. It will make you smile. 
    5. Did you take a beginner quilting class when you first started out? What was it like and did it inspire you to continue quilting?  I never took a beginning quilt class. My mother, grandmother, great grandmother and aunts were all quilters and every one of them inspired me. I watched them and learned from them. I also checked out a lot of books from the library.......everyone that Georgia Bonesteel ever wrote.  :-)
    6. Phillipa signs up to make a baby quilt as her first quilt. Have you made a baby or toddler quilt?  Yes, my first quilt was made for our daughter, Collette, just about this time of year back in 1970.  My husband was in the Air Force and we were stationed near Tokyo, Japan. I was a new mom, a long way from home and knowing that it would be close to three years before I'd see family again. My husband traveled a lot so even though there was a new baby, I still had a lot of time to myself. I decided to make a big quilt for Collette and started cutting squares from old clothes that led to this very worn but still loved quilt.........
And while I was making that quilt/comforter, my mother was stitching this quilt...........
My mother always did a lot of embroidery and had a wonderful collection of patterns. The kitten designs make the quilt look like it was made in the 1930's but it was made in 1970. I found designs for the puppies in her pattern collection and made flannel baby blankets for Collette.
When our son, Devlin, was born in 1976, I made this bright quilt because it was a banner, patriotic year! He arrived on July 5th, one day late for the big 200 year celebration on July 4th, 1976!
I love to blanket stitch and made this big baby blanket with large cartoon characters that I appliqued on a cotton background.
As the years went by, I made a few baby quilts here and there and then in 1999, our grandson, Jacob was born. He needed a warm, snuggly quilt so I used lots of flannels, some I bought and some were scraps left from pajamas made for his mommy, Collette. The four center squares under Jacob's tummy are from a nightgown she wore when she was a little girl.
 He loved that quilt and here he is all snuggled up..............
and then "peek-a-boo"...........he's all smiles!!
Well, that's probably more than you wanted to know and now you might like to have a chance to win Marie's book. All you have to do is leave your name and your e-mail contact and tell me anything you'd like to share about a baby or kid's quilt!  That's all! The giveaway will end at midnight May 2nd. And you know me..........there will be a little fabric surprise for the winner. I have some cute baby-themed charm squares that will get one of you started on a baby quilt for you, a grandchild or for a friend. So, leave that comment and after that, you'll want to head on over to Victoria's blog for another chance to win Marie's book.

One more thing...........
Next week, this pattern for Marie's quilt "Hide and Seek" will be available at her site. Just go here and become a registered member of her site and the pattern is free!

That's all, folks! Best of luck in the book drawing!

Wednesday, April 25

Nothing to Quibble's a baby quilt!

The blog hop for Marie*Bostwick's new book "Ties that Bind" continues today so check out these blogs for another chance to win a copy of the book!

Wednesday, April 25

Jennifer - SewHooked -

Erin - One Piece at a Time -

If you're following the blog hop, you know that there is a baby quilt project in the story. There will be a pattern available soon on Marie's site so that you can make a really neat baby quilt.  I took a look back through some blogposts I did a couple years ago and found my "Quibble" quilt that I made for our pastor's new baby boy.

Pastor Brigit and husband, Joe, welcomed their son, Timber, and I made a comfy flannel and fleece quilt for him. They've added baby sister, Tara, and I realized when I looked at Timber's quilt that I never made one for Tara. Hmmmm......I need to remedy that situation.
Here are the three posts for the simple flannel/fleece baby quilt that I made for Timber.


So, guess what I will be doing today?........... I will be gathering up some flannels so I can make a "Quibble" quilt for little Tara.
Stop back tomorrow for your chance to win a copy of Marie's book here on my blog. I'll let you know if I liked it. You may have already figured out the answer.  ;-)

Tuesday, April 24

Here are the winners of the coffee themed fabrics from this post. All the winners have been notified and have responded. I had to share their comments and links to their blogs.............
First winner was Debbie in Jerusalem. Yes, the little bundle of coffee prints is going all the way to Israel!  And her comment.......
"Oooo, I think I'm first! I don't drink coffee, but I know a lot of people who would love to be gifted with mug rugs!"
You can check out Debbie's blog here............ Fiberwork*by*Debbie.

Next winner was Marie. I could deliver the bundle to her as she lives just a few miles south of me in lovely St. Peter, MN.
"Oh good grief -- I'm anonymous ---evidently the coffee hasn't traveled thru the system fast enough yet!"
Marie has a blog ....... Watermelon*Diva !  Check it out to see some great photos of our area here in Minnesota. :-)

The third winner is Cathy and her bundle is going "down under" to Australia!
"I am most definitely a morning person ;-) first thing I do when I get up is make a coffee and check my email and blogs - lucky hubby is a night person - we spend time together mid afternoon on the weekends ;-) "
Cathy has several blog pages but I loved the header photo in this one....... Crafty*Cathy.

So, two bundles going a long distance and one I could deliver. So, where does the fourth one go? It goes to Anne Marie who does not have a blog but she follows lots of blogs and has been a long-time reader of my blog. She lives in Texas but after seeing a photo on my blog a few years ago, I learned she is from Minnesota. I posted a picture of an old church that was being renovated and she e-mailed to say she knew exactly where that was. She shared this comment.........
"I am a morning person - the early bird gets the worm! I am so glad you are on the road to recovery."

So, two Minnesota connections won bundles and two bundles are going a long distance from Minnesota. The blogging world sure has opened doors that I never expected!! Congrats to all the winners of my coffee fabrics giveaway and's the first day of the Book Blog Tour for Marie Bostwick's new book so here's where you'll want to visit today.......
Michele - Quilting Gallery -
Jackie - Canton Village Quilt Works -
Wendy - Ivory Spring -

Best of luck in winning a copy of the book!

Monday, April 23

Get ready for Marie's Book Blog Hop!!!!

It's Monday and usually I have something "on the line" but that little feature is "on vacation" while I am "on the mend".  One of the things I did while recovering was to read Marie*Bostwick's new book.............

I'm going to tell you all about it, ............... well, almost but not quite................  because I wouldn't want to spoil the plot by sharing it all!!! If you'd like a chance to win a copy of her book then just check out the bloggers that Michele at Quilting*Gallery has lined up to participate in this Blog Hop. It all starts tomorrow, so check in each day and register for a chance to win the book. For right now, though, ............have a good Monday and I'll see ya all tomorrow!

Blog Hop Schedule:

    Tuesday, April 24
    Michele - Quilting Gallery -

    Jackie - Canton Village Quilt Works -
    Wendy - Ivory Spring -

    Wednesday, April 25
    Jennifer - SewHooked -
    Erin - One Piece at a Time -

    Thursday, April 26
    Victoria - Bumble Beans Inc. -
    Sandi - A Legacy of Stitches -

    Friday, April 27
    Michele - With Heart and Hands -
    Melissa - Lilac Lane -

    Saturday, April 28
    Melissa - Sew Bitter Sweet Designs -
    Kim - Crafty Apple -

Sunday, April 22

Are you a morning person?

I am not a morning person. I am a nightowl. I get up early only if necessary. I get up early if vacation is involved or something equally fun. I actually got up early for surgery and wouldn't exactly call it fun but I sure was glad to have it done!!!  No matter what time I start my day, I usually do it with a cup of coffee/cocoa/cream. For years I thought I didn't like coffee. Loved the smell of it but oh, it was so strong!! Then I discovered adding cocoa and flavored cream and whipped cream and oh, suddenly coffee tasted very good. LOL!  A couple years ago, I made a mug rug for my morning cup of cofee/cocoa/cream like the one pictured here..............
Some of you may have seen this as a sample over at Michele's Quilting Gallery when she hosted her Mug Rug Swap. I found some new fabrics in coffee themed prints and want to make one for my niece. The pieces are cut and ready to sew this Sunday afternoon. I shared the rest of the fabrics with my quilty friends who are at retreat at Villa Maria this weekend. I was supposed to be there, too, but had to make the decision before my surgery whether to go or not. I opted to cancel as I wasn't sure how I'd feel. It was wise as I seem to need a nap every afternoon. Who wants to go to a retreat and nap?  It's sewing time when you are at retreat!!! Since I couldn't be there, I wanted to send a little something so I sent copies of my mug rug pattern for everyone (15 friends) and these six fat quarters and some backing fabric. They can each make their own mug rug or cup cozy for their morning coffee.
I thought there might be a few of you out there who also enjoy a morning cup of coffee/cocoa/cream and you might also like to make a mug rug or cup cozy. I have four little fabric bundles for four lucky winners (mug rug pattern will be included). Each bundle has two fat-eighths of coffee print fabric.
Here's how you can win a bundle............
The first person who comments will win the bundle with the green ribbon.
Then the bundles tied with pink and yellow ribbon will go to two random winners who comment starting with the second comment and ending with the next to last comment ......because ..........
The last person who comments will win the bundle with the lavendar ribbon!
Just leave your name and e-mail contact. Comments will close at 9:00 p.m. Monday CST.
Winners will be notified by noon Tuesday CST.
Have a lovely Sunday!

Friday, April 20

It's about time...........

that I did a blogpost!!!!  Heard from a couple of you that said you are missing my posts, so here ya go ........ the big "catch-up blogpost"!!!!!!  This post will be loaded with photos and lots of thank you's!!! 
So, where should I begin? Well, I'll start with ....... I'm doing well and getting lots of rest and not "over-doing" it At All!  I have taken up residence in the little "sitting room" that is part of the master bedroom on the first floor in our house. This is my view from my comfy red chair..................
 And here is what I am working on.................
There are 23 "mostly finished" crazy quilt blocks in that pile and I am determined to put the finishing touches on them over the next three months (I want them sewn together by the end of 2012!!!).  Each block has a different crocheted heart on it that I bought on some trip or received as a gift. I started the blocks in 2000 when we organized our crazy quilting group at the Scott County Historical Society in Shakopee, MN (and if you live in the area and want to know more about the group, just e-mail me!).  I have had lots of time to stitch while I recover as my husband picked up the cooking, cleaning and laundry duties. And he was helped out in the cooking department by my friend, Barb, who brought us soup and muffins and this yummy Crescent Roll casserole that had a taco flavor to it. We ate this for dinner on Easter Sunday. Yummy! Thanks, Barb!!
A few days later, my neighbor Kathy called and said she'd like to make dinner for us and it was Crescent Roll Chicken Hotdish. Also yummy!!
I only do Crescent Rolls as 'rolls' and these were both so good that I think I need to check out some recipes for things to make with Crescent Rolls. Do you suppose there is a recipe that would involve chocolate and whipped cream and Crescent Rolls?? Sounds good and might be as tasty as Kathy's Rhubarb Crisp dessert that topped off the chicken hotdish. Thanks, Kathy!!
My friend, Doris, stopped by and brought pretty red roses and muffins. The muffins were good but, oh, how I loved the roses!! My husband is not a "flower guy" so I dearly love it when I get flowers.  They had such a lovely scent and I liked walking through the living room just get a whiff of the "scent of roses".  :-)  Thanks, Doris!!
The flowers that my daughter and son-in-law sent when I was in the hospital lasted almost two weeks before I had to remove the big lily flowers.  They started to crumble but the carnations and daisies are still looking good. I'm amazed they are lasting into a third week!
A couple weeks before I went in for surgery my daughter gave me a gift that she intended to give me at Christmas. Do you ever do that? You know, buy a gift, then set it aside and find it long after the date.  Collette and I do that all the time!!!!! So anyway, here's the bag she gave me.............
and it's one of those expandable totes from Thirty-One gifts (you'll find the bag here). She thought it would be great for me to fill it with quilts when I present my quilting program. I agree!
Inside the bag, were all these neat gifts which came in handy for making notes and writing thank you's when I was at the hospital. Thanks, Collette!
At about the same time, Collette gave me her gifts, my sister, Judy, sent a package with OREOS!!!! Yay!! and this lovely journal where I have kept some notes of this interesting health related journey. The journal is from the Ellie Claire line and can be found here.
I ate all the OREOS long before I went to the hospital so I can't show you what they look like but I am guessing you all know anyway. LOL!  Judy also does the "buy a gift and forget to give it thing".  Must run in the family.  She found this old-fashioned Ball canning jar that has a modern touch! Some folks are so clever! Just add a lotion pump and Voila!! it's a hand-lotion dispenser!!  Very handy to keep next to my sewing chair. Thanks, Judy!
So, as noted, with all this food and gifts, and the husband doing the usual housework, I had time to, I finished the hand-quilting on this 30's print tablerunner!! With a project finished, this means I can start something new!
So I decided to play with my beading stuff and made some bracelets and earrings. I love the bead aisle at Michael's and treat myself to a strand of beads every so often. Mostly, I make things just for me or my daughter although I made a couple pieces for my sister and for a giveaway. I am a novice at this and worry that my pieces will fall apart far, so good. :-)
I spent a couple nights working with beads and both nights we were getting rain. One band of showers left behind this pretty rainbow.....
The photo was taken from our upstairs bedroom window. By the time I got downstairs and outside for a photo...........the rainbow was barely there.  They are so pretty and they last such a short time!
One thing that will last a long time is all the cards and good wishes that I received the last three weeks. I hung a picture frame in the family room where I kept tucking the cards and as you can see, I ran out of room!!
Thank you all so much for the good wishes. They really lifted my spirits!!!
I figured that was about the end of the cards but then yesterday.........and just when I was thinking, "I cannot do one more word search puzzle!!!"..... I walked out to the mailbox and found a big package that I wasn't expecting...........
And then I saw it was from Sharon at Daisy*Cottage*Quilting and inside was her signature polka dot tissue paper wrapped around...........
these lovely gifts!!! I was so surprised and I squealed when I saw that zippered bag. I am such a "pink lady" and just love it!!! Sharon is a blogging friend that I've never met in person but it hasn't stopped us from being friends. BFF's, you know, just like Paris Hilton. :-)  Thanks so much, Sharon!!!
Okay, a couple more "gifts" and this card with those sweet red, white and blue fabrics comes from Linda in Virginia who is in my Seasons BOM Yahoo group. And, just like Sharon, I've never met Linda but when I started blogging and hosting the Yahoo groups, I started adding friends from all over the U.S. and "across the pond", and "down under" and "over here" and "over there" and it has been fantastic! Thanks, Linda!!!
When I went to mailbox today, there was another unexpected package. This one came from Jacquelynne at The*Noble*Wife blog.  You all may remember that Jacquelynne has shared fabrics from her collection and several of you won a few charm packs and patterns. I have a project and giveaway planned for this summer that will involve Jacquelynne's fabrics so there will be another chance to win. Thanks, Jacquelynne for the card and great CD!
Okay, so are you still with me?? Yes, this is a long blogpost but I had lots of "catch-up" to do. And speaking of "catch-up", here is a tiny project that I took along to stitch on when I was in the hospital................
You can see by the size of my Tracphone that this is a tiny quilt. It's not pieced but instead is a piece of white cotton muslin that I drew the quilt design on and then carefully colored it with markers. It was a project that we did in the Midwest*Miniature*Guild back in the late 1980's. SO, talk about a project that needed some "catch-up"!! This one was it!!  I am very carefully hand-quilting the little piece and it will eventually go on a bed in the dollhouse that my dad built about the same time I started this quilt. So that I'll finish this, I have placed it in a basket on the kitchen table so I can pick it up and regulary add a few stitches. There was one other thing I brought along to the hospital.........a book, Marie*Bostwick's newest novel called "Ties That Bind".

I received the copy just two days before I went for surgery and kept it for a treat after the surgery was over. Did I enjoy the book? Well........... I can't tell you just yet.......because, you will have to visit my blog next Thursday, April 26th to find out!  That's because the book was sent to me to review as I'll be part of Michele's Quilting*Gallery Book Blog Hop next week and there will be lots of chances for you to win a copy of the book!!!   Many of you are very familiar with Michele of Quilting*Gallery fame. She hosts great contests for quilters, connects us with great products, shops and quilters, and has a new feature The*Learning*Center that is hosted by Pat*Sloan. Check back on Monday and I will give you all the details on the blogs who will be hosting a giveaway for the book. Plus, there's a free quilt pattern available!!
And you just might want to stop back on Sunday to see what I might share then because.............I was supposed to go to retreat at Villa Maria this weekend but due to my surgery, I had to make a decision and knew that I should not go, just stay home and recover. But, I will have a little something to share, so check in on Sunday and see what's up.  :-)  In the meantime, have a great weekend!!
And thanks one more time for all the cards, gifts, food and well-wishes you all shared!

Monday, April 9

What's on the line? - Two Years of quilts!!!

I didn't have anything new "on the line" so I thought I'd share this quilt that you've seen many times before..........
This is a vintage quilt top, not a fully quilted quilt but it is the first item that I shared when I began my Monday feature ......... "What's on the line?" You can find that first post here
Give me a couple of weeks and I'll have something new on the line soon. I am recovering from my surgery quite nicely but taking it slow and easy. I might not post much this week but I thought I'd do a little giveaway while I am recuperating. My last giveaway of fabric trash and the pink trash can was sooooooo successful so I thought I'd try something similar. This time there won't be a trash can but I will take a USPS Flat Rate box and fill it with my scraps and some patterns and other fun stuff. That will be for US residents only but.........I'll fill an envelope with scraps and a pattern or two to send anywhere overseas. It's all in celebration of two years of my "What's on the line?" feature. Just leave your name and e-mail link/address for a chance to win. Winners will be announced next Monday, April 16!
Have a good Monday!
WINNERS are..........Lindah for the U.S. box of scraps and Robin in Canada for the envelope of scraps!

Sunday, April 8

Happy Easter!

The flowers my daughter brought me when I was in the hospital are looking lovely on our coffee table. I'm glad I took a photo of them as they don't last forever.  So pretty and such a touch of spring!
I am feeling good, doing a little hand-sewing and a bit of napping. :-)  Before I went into the hospital, though, I had been doing a lot of sorting and cleaning in my sewing room. As I was sorting through a box of papers, I found a tiny bunny that I thought I'd lost forever...........
She is part of a family of bunnies that I made sometime in the 1980's. She's been missing for at least five years. The rest of her family has been in their wooden bunny that I set out every year at Easter.  
I'm so glad she's been found and can return to her family.............

I made bunches of these bunnies when my daughter, Collette was little. Perhaps next year, I'll share the pattern and you can make a basket of bunnies for your Easter celebration. Hope you are all enjoying a lovely Sunday and a Happy Easter to all of you!

Friday, April 6

Room with a view........

That's right......... a room with a view is what I had during my recent surgery at Immanuel St. Joseph Hospital in Mankato, MN.
I had the best doctor/surgeon and wonderful nurses during my stay. Now I'm home and recovering nicely. I don't mind walking and sitting but that getting up and down out of chairs or the bed is still a wee bit uncomfortable. Every day, every hour, actually gets better. I'm getting lots of rest and did a tiny bit of hand-quilting. I have my nose in a really good book that I'll be telling you about later this month. Going off to read some more on it right now. I'll be back soon. Thanks for your well-wishes and prayers. They were so appreciated and I could feel them all!

Monday, April 2

Sweet Spring!!!

Spring is in the air! and Easter is just days away! I have fond memories of dressing up on Easter Sunday and heading off to church and the Easter baskets filled with chocolates. I thought of those memories when I designed a project several years ago.  I made little Easter egg pins from Woolfelt. I gave the pattern to my friends and asked if they would please make an egg for my "egg tree". And they did............

Each egg is made by a different quilting friend and somewhere I have a piece of paper that tells me exactly who made which eggs. I really need to tape it to the back of this frame! I hung it in my entry this year and think I will keep it up til Mother's Day ....... just because I like looking at it and being reminded of my quilty friends.

So, you may have noticed that there is nothing "on the line" this week. I decided to take a break from my "on the line" feature until after I recover from my surgery. As I write this, I am just hours away from going to the hospital and am looking forward to the surgery and getting back to my old self. To help pass the time today, I decided to make a spring wreath and decorate the front porch. I picked up a bunch of flowers at Dollar Tree last week and had fun putting them into a wreath and that yellow bucket........
I love the polka dot ribbon that I found at either Michael's or Joann's. The yellow bucket was one my grandson used to play with and I decided it would look good holding the artificial flowers that I am so good at growing. LOL!
The little bunny on the chair was a garage sale find. He's tied to the chair so he won't blow away in any spring wind or rainstorm. :-)
It was easy to just wrap some leaf vine around the wreath and then I cut apart the flower bunches and stuck them here and there in the wreath and voila! it was done! 
And just as I was taking these pictures, my friend Barb and her husband Tom, pulled into the driveway. They were bringing food so we can enjoy some nice meals after I get home from the hospital. We are going to enjoy muffins and a Crescent Roll Casserole and some Beef Barley Soup. I can hardly wait! Barb is a really good cook so this is a real gift!
Time to close this post and say ..........I'll be gone for a few days but will be back soon!
Have a great Monday!
"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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