Christmas in earnest now. Can't avoid it or put it off any longer...the buying of presents and wrapping, the house decorating, the baking, the finalizing of plans for Friday, Dec. 25.
Strangely enough giving to charities is way down this holiday season and our oddly snowless December is being blamed. Apparently, we here in Canada need snow to put us in the holiday giving mood. The Salvation Army Kettle Appeal is reporting much lower than usual donations. Food banks, ditto.
Snowsuit drives down as well. That one makes more sense to me. Having snow and cold temperatures would definitely make you realize kids need snowsuits.
We've had neither snow nor cold so far. It might work out to be a warm, green Christmas but a less charitable one which is unfortunate.
My Salt and Pepper Shakers
Meanwhile I want to update you on my Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt blocks. I've been steadily working on them trying not to let my neck get too stiff or my eyes cross. Some of the blocks are posing more of a challenge than others.
Here are a few that worked out fine.
Marcella was a fast one... with only 9 pieces, a real break from some of the blocks I've been tackling with many, many pieces. And none of the pieces that small...an added bonus.
This is Patience, another easy block to construct with 9 pieces. I think that name would have suited some of the other, more challenging blocks better.
Here is Lola; piecing her 16 parts was a little more challenging. Getting all the points to meet neatly without a lot of ripping out seams was a feat for me. But I managed.
This is Nan, a rather odd looking block with a prominent cross motif. I wasn't that fussy but worked it because with just 11 pieces, she was another break from the tougher ones. This is my second attempt because I thought the two crosses should be the same width and I ripped apart the first one when they didn't match up. Only to look closer at the design and realize I'd gotten it right the first time. They are meant to be different widths. Grrr....
Here is Fern proudly sporting 29 pieces! She represents a victory for me. Even though the central panel went together like a dream I then struggled mightily with the corner pieces. It took a lot of effort to get them evenly spaced along each side. There is precision in cutting and stitching required for some of these blocks to look okay that eludes me from time to time.
One minute I think I am improving and then along will come a block that will be a real humdinger to stitch together. I have several blocks using red cloth as a nod to the season partway through. I'm not sure they will 'go' with the ones I've made so far.
The SAL administrators are taking a break till the new year. People will have a chance to catch up with the blocks completed so far. I've noticed more people telling they are making changes to blocks, omitting some, and doing doubles of their favourites. This is the way each quilt will be unique; I know already I won't be tackling a couple blocks that I don't think are that attractive.
I'm enjoying being a part of a group like this. There has been a huge amount of sharing...tips, tutorials, personal stories, ups and downs. I'm learning about the many different fabric lines available as many have chosen to use a collection. This is certainly a far cry from my grandmother's day when quilts were stitched with leftover remnants of clothes, flour bags and the like.
But it is all very interesting.
Happy Hustling and Bustling!