Thursday 27 January 2022

Eight Everyday Tiny Wonders

 I didn't look far to find things to be grateful for and happy about this week. Here is my list.

When I got to the bottom of my bowl of oatmeal and saw a beautiful cardinal...The relief I felt when I found the pom pom Neddy chewed off my woolen cap-  after I thought he ate it!

When I saw this beautiful painting and it stopped me in my tracks because back when I was trying to paint I thought my desire to outline things was only for cartooning. And I do love tulip shapes in paintings, drawings, quilts, etc.
The Blue Jug by Samuel John Peploe. (Do you love these colours as much as I do?)

When my ex included something in my Christmas gift he knows I will love.

When I got this Christmas card and wanted to keep it because it features all the critters I love and have sighted right on our own property.
When the juncos arrived and stayed because I kept lots of old garden vegetation for them to have a nibble of something good during these cold days.
When I got this new small appliance, a waffle maker, to add to my little collection, and the delicious breakfast for supper we enjoyed. 
Having something so cheery, all this pretty brilliant red and white scrappiness in my lap...

and especially thankful for being retired providing me all this uninterrupted time to lay hand stitches when the spirit moves me...
Hope your day is filled with tiny, monumental things too.
Joining up with Not Afraid of Color and the Thankful Thursday group. Also happily linking with Kathy's QuiltsQuilting Patchwork AppliqueSmall Quilts and Doll Quilts,  So Scrappy and Quilting is More Fun Than Housework.


Tuesday 25 January 2022

Free Patterns, Small Topper Finish, Choosing Binding for Courthouse Steps

January 31, 1948
Sledding hills are open around the capital region and it always reminds me of all the "sliding" as we called it I did every winter growing up in wintry Corner Brook. Our "hill" was right outside my house, a dead end road so no traffic.  The year I got my own five seater toboggan for Christmas was memorable. Someone was always on the back with me. I loved every minute. And I can't help but think what marvelous exercise we all got traipsing back up the hill countless times on a Saturday afternoon. My Mom is in this story too because it was always wonderful to go inside to the warmth of the house and good smells coming from the kitchen. Saturday's supper was usually soup (often pea) with homemade bread and gingerbread with custard sauce for dessert. ( In those days in Newfoundland, there seemed to be set meals for each day of the week and these were pretty much the same all over the province. A fact I learned when I went to university in St. John's and stayed in residence with girls from around the province.)

Stitching News
Janet Winkel at The Spruce Crafts has collated this marvelous group of 14 free quilt patterns. Design a Quilt With These Free Block Patterns. #10, the Bento Box  caught my eye.

Thinking of Valentines coming up- another site I enjoy browsing, By the Bay Needleart, offers this free pdf pattern. Love is the Key. I think that is a major truth in all things in this life. John Lennon got it right.
I was very happy with this fat quarter bundle I received from  Missouri Star Quilt Company. I'm quite low on blender style fabrics and these will be pressed into service right away. Very delicate motifs on whites and creams. Hush by Riley Blake.
This little topper is finished. I tried various colours for the binding but I thought the black picked up on the moons the best of all and went with that in the end. Machine stitched to the front then hand stitched around the back. 
That's a dying Christmas poinsettia I took from Daughter's house to see if I could revive it somehow. Wish me luck!

 This is what is on my TO DO list this week and will be getting the most attention. I think of this as a "real" quilt as it is destined for a bed. 
It is my Elm Street OMG for January and is now very close to a finish. Discussing with myself...what to bind it with. I've been trying out a number of fabrics as you can imagine and I don't have much that would have enough yardage to get around this size for it is large. Happy dilemmas!
Rose Marie at Applique 'n Patch Quilting finishes each of her marvelous posts with 
Cherish your day, Cherish your life!

Sharing this post with Texas Quilt GalLife in the ScrapatchQuilt Paint CreateAlycia Quilts and My Quilt Infatuation.

Friday 21 January 2022

Stove Top Macaroni and Cauliflower, Floral Motif Sampler, Scrappy Dresdens, Yuletide Blanket

Monday morning's kitchen window storm view. 

There were numerous accidents, three of which involved fatalities. I'll never understand how things stay open here no matter the weather. 

We are completely cleared out now and the temperatures have plummeted -27C this morning; however, the sunshine today is most welcome. I did three bouts of shoveling keeping our steps and the veranda clear and was so happy that the old arms held up and no soreness. Ironically, I'm actually having little twinges in my right arm from the crocheting. Nearing the last round of my Yuletide Blanket.  It is much bigger than I thought it would be and the combination of stitches is making it dense and very warm. 

 Here is what I'm feeding us vitamin wise for these winter months....
 I made this recipe for One Pot Creamy Cauliflower and Macaroni Casserole.  It is a stove top dish so very easy. I added spinach to mine and some chopped carrots. It was tasty and we had enough to make dinner the next day with a salad. This is Tieghan's photo from her website because my photo did not look tasty at all.
With Fraktur Flowers finished, it was time to start another project. Many folks on   FlossTube are raving about this design, Floral Motif Sampler by The Scarlett House, one of my favourite places to browse. 
 Brenda of Brenda and the Serial Starter stitched this project while receiving her first cancer treatments and found it calming and soothing.  Her treatments worked, btw, and she is well now thankfully. Myself and all her followers rejoiced with her.  

At first I couldn't see what the fuss was about, but as I move to more flowers, I am enjoying it more. It is nice to have the variety and you get a sense of accomplishment when even one flower is finished. I was tempted to try a higher thread count and stitch one over one (threads) but don't think winter light is a good time to try that. So this is 28 count Winter Moon Cashel linen, two over two as usual for me. I am loving the particular shade this linen is, very soft white.

IN My Lap last night, I laid a few hand big stitch style quilting lines on this piece. A bit of fun stitching and a nice break from the counting. 

I have other things to share like free quilt block patterns that I really like but I'll include that next post. So please stay warm or cool, and busy with what you love. 

I especially enjoy these linky parties...Not Afraid of ColorKathy's Quilts,  Quilting Patchwork AppliqueQuilting is More Fun Than HouseworkSmall Quilts and Doll QuiltsThe Inquiring Quilter and Creations...Quilts...Art.  

Tuesday 18 January 2022

January 2022 Blizzard, Lily Challenge, Big Project Mystery Clue

This fall the little gray squirrel has been a steady visitor to the bird feeders. I was struck by how beautiful his tail is.

He looks very healthy.

How appropriate to have my Snowbound (Kathy Schmitz's fabric line) Hexie runner in use. All day Monday we were mostly house bound while a blizzard blew around us. That is unusual for here as while we get lots of snow, we lack the winds to create a blizzard. 

 Neddy and I had a bit of a hard time doing our early morning walk. I had to stop twice to catch my breath. But I was determined to get him out because he was a bit sad that Petey has gone home. He was not tired at all and developed a very cute kind of high, spritely step to get through the snow. 
Good thing I did the walk in the morning because so much snow fell we can't walk the trails now till the ski do does some flattening. 
Suddenly our world is very white.
I was able to get back in the sewing room and complete the big tidy up while the snow flakes flew. It felt so good to have that done even if it is three hours of my life I will never get back. LOL

Here is a clue to a big project I uncovered.  All the border blocks are hand pieced and completed.  I need the center medallion finished.  I got hung up on how I thought the birds were a bit odd looking.  Ring any bells to any of you?                             

"Finish" is my word for stitching for now and I pulled out this project below to be next in the to be quilted line up. This was the 2018 Lily Challenge Project run by Het Klossie. I kept a basket with the pieces all ready to be stitched and made a habit of stitching one each evening while supper cooked. 

Hand stitched blocks with machine stitched borders. What an enjoyable project!

The sewing room will be busy this week. Hope yours is too!

Sharing this post with Love Laugh QuiltQuilt FabricationThe Inquiring QuilterLife in the ScrapatchAlycia QuiltsMy Quilt InfatuationSo Scrappy and Texas Quilt Gal.

Friday 14 January 2022

Sewing Room Dig 2022, Who Said I Yam What I Yam?, Baking, Loving Labradors

  We have Ned's litter mate, Petey, here with us for a while and I've been making sure they have been getting lots of exercise and attention. Being Labradors, they both are needy when it comes to pats and rubs.  All joyful to the two of us as we are basically in isolation and this is a pleasant diversion. It's also like old times to have two dogs again. 

 I've been complaining lately about the lack of  light for indoor picture taking as you know. SIL was so nice to buy me this special Halo light.  It has a very soft illumination and is very light weight for positioning and moving from room to room. This last feature is nice because my Ott Floor Lamp weighs a ton and does not transport easily.  I'll let you know how Halo is to stitch by. 
Daughter brought us over another cake, a dark chocolate one this time. I've been very remiss in showing her cakes and squares... a once a month treat which is continuing. Last time it was a pan of date squares which Hubby devoured. The frosting here is light and delicious.
I told you in this post about baking a loaf of raisin bread in the bread machine. It was delicious though I will tweak it a little, swap out some of the sugar for another tablespoon of molasses. I also found it a tiny bit heavy. I had baked it on the shorter setting for Sweets per the instruction booklet but next time I will use the regular setting which adds more time to the overall process. But there will definitely be a next time probably this weekend. 

Sandra at mmm Quilts has a lovely Etsy shop, Sandra Jane Quilts.  Before Christmas I purchased two of her bags for gifts. They are adorable, pretty fabrics and perfectly stitched. And very well priced. Her service was wonderful as you can imagine from Sandra so do take a peek at her shop.  
What else have I uncovered in the  Sewing Room Dig of 2022???
Okay I found lots but I remembered all the projects except one.  Last winter I'd been sewing scraps together and made this little hand quilted topper that I've used a lot since. I was surprised how much I enjoyed using the yellow which is a colour I'd never used a lot of before.
At the same time I also stitched enough scrappy bits together for this six block pieced runner using more yellow. Almost finished; needs quilting now (and a good press) and was completely forgotten. So that's one topper and one runner that could be finished in no time. But who's counting. Meanwhile I'll continue to share other discoveries from my dig, some so big I'm ashamed they got sidelined. 😞
But I yam what I yam which reminds me of this guy...

Did you watch Popeye cartoons as a kid? I loved them.
Hope there is not an Extreme Cold Warning where you are like we have today and for the next three days. -30 wind chill presently so I wore my balaclava today which freaked out the dogs for a few minutes this morning. LOL

Monday 10 January 2022

Scrappy Dresdens, La- D- Da Finish, Table Topper Finish, Very Peri

 It's take stock time in the sewing room.  This could get ugly.  Who knows what I'll find in the WIP department and will that make me sad is the question. Mind you it is not a complete free for all down there. My decades as a teacher made me organized and I continue to try to make my sewing stuff fit the labels I've put on the boxes, bins, etc. But when I worked on the Jewel Box quilt, the room looked like a bomb had exploded and I haven't quite cleared up since then. 

 I wrote that yesterday and on my first dive I came across these...Leftovers from the Scrappy Dresden Plate quilt I made several years ago. They were rejects because of the inconsistent size of the moons.

But thrifty me had sewed them together like this to make a little table topper. I think I'll put this at the top of the TO DO pile for this week. I've mentioned we have a lot of little tables here and they all could use a topper. 
Speaking of which, I finished the Snowmen runner.  I liked Roseanne's-Home Sewn By Us- tip about using white fabric to photograph against and decided to use my brightest piece of white for the sashing.  I do think it gives the piece a certain clarity it was lacking. 
I also used Wendy's-Pieceful Thoughts- tip to photograph in the mornings close to a window to take advantage of as much natural light as possible. That's the pretty white Kalanchoes flowers there and the white polka dot plant has really taken off. 

On the weekend I also finished Fraktur Flowers.  I haven't put my initials on it.
La D Da Design stitched on 28 ct Cashel Linen 2 over 2

I listened to the CBC radio interview with the Pantone colour of the year expert, Leatrice Eiseman. It was interesting to hear their take on colour in our lives and how they come to a decision about what the colour should be each year. This year it is a colour they actually formulated. One of a Periwinkle shade. They used a violet in the mix which makes the blue then unique. Newness was what they were going for. Here is a link to that interview if you'd care to have a listen. Do you like it? Cute name.

Wow, so many of you tried Wordle! And let us know that you liked it. As far as I know it is not an app and the designer doesn't want to make money off it. This Power Language link is the only one I know of. I've been doing it every day and it consistently takes me four tries to solve it. Anybody figure out some shortcuts or tips for solving it quicker?
Hope your week is off to a great start!
It's also great to visit linky parties...Texas Quilt GalMy Quilt InfatuationAlycia QuiltsFor the Love of GeesePowered by Quilting and The Inquiring Quilter.

Thursday 6 January 2022

Wordle, Gail's Jewel Box, Wooliest Pin Cushion, New CAL, A Show to Watch

 I have a bunch of stuff to share in this post.  

Have you heard of Wordle?  My sister alerted me to this new word game that folks have gone wild for. One puzzle is released each day and I won't talk about the details here; if interested you can read them yourself. The creator does not want to make money off it so it isn't an app. I think. Doesn't take long to do; I like it. If you try it, let us know what you think.

One puzzle a day found here at Power Language UK

Talented Gail, the Cozy Quilter, shared her Jewel Box quilt with me in an email. And gave me permission to share it with you. Isn't this a beauty! In the blues...there's something about blues together that I love. Thanks, Gail!

Another Christmas gift all the way from Bonavista, Newfoundland, the area where my Dad was born and raised.  This one, a very special pin cushion made from  wool of the sheep in the area. 
That grandmother always spun her own wool and knit many, many sweaters, mittens and socks. The cardigans, mittens and socks were always a part of the Christmas box from them along with new pyjamas each year.  And I have a strong memory of the very heavy bulky hand knit sweaters my grandfather wore under his oilskins fishing. 

My Yuletide Blanket didn't get finished for the Yuletide but pert near. I'm on #64 of the 78 rounds and where I could do three or four rounds an evening not that long ago, now I can just do one.  It is keeping my legs warm as I crochet. 
Lucy At Attic 24 is just releasing her newest CAL, the Harbour Blanket.
  These are the colours and I'm intrigued by the pattern (which is free and there is no sign up necessary) she's using in this one to create little waves. The wool bundle is available at Wool Warehouse.
I did get this table runner finished, the one using Kathy Schmitz's Snowmen embroidery patterns. But I have to work at getting a photo that shows true colours. Slate blues are a challenge. And clearly I need to learn how to depict true colours in my images in general, especially during winter months. I think this center block is a Turkey Track pattern. 

We watched this series, Irvine West's Crime on Britbox and enjoyed it. So often the detectives have emotional turmoil themselves, poor home lives,'s almost a cliche. Well this fellow was so distraught throughout...the character was  in relentless anguish it seemed. I felt sorry for the actor who had to play the role. When casting, the first question they must have asked was Can you cry?
I told you how the cardinals come to the feeders at dusk. I took this photo of the female one evening. I do hope the sunflower seeds are providing them a little nourishment to make it through our cold nights. 
Those nights have suddenly become much colder averaging -20C, but it is January in Canada just outside the second coldest capital city in the world. So Bundle Up time!

Monday 3 January 2022

The Ruby, Crimson, French General and Just Plain Red Post

 Here in my rosy red flannel pyjamas...let the lounging begin! Maybe this is the way all New Year's should begin. 

I just put the mixing for molasses raisin bread in my Bread machine so a lovely aroma should fill the house later on. Recipe I used is here at Bread Dad.

The Cardinals visit my feeders late afternoon at almost dusk which makes getting a good photo of them tricky. I was very happy to capture this fellow bouncing about the branches one morning.
I especially love it when I get a new plant or two as gifts to add to my winter indoor garden. This is white polka dot plant and in back, Kalanchoe in bloom.
Our New Year's puzzle, The Country Diary of an Edwardian Woman, winter edition, is open and ready to go.  I was happy to see so many of the critters featured are sighted here on our property.

My happy Elm Street OMG for January. My scrappy QAYG Courthouse Steps. Time to get this one done and dusted so it is definitely on this week's To Do List.
Below is the front where two large pieces have been joined with machine stitching (where the safety pin is poking through). This red has been a frustrating colour to show...the true red is between the brightness above and darkness below.  It is French General red.
And here is that seam on the back where I will hand stitch it together. I ran out of that pretty green fabric and continued with a cream that also has a swirl in it but can't quite be seen in this photo. 
And several more of the scrappy tiny trees have been sewn. I'm amazed I'm coordinating with Angela and the So Scrappy RSC crowd for once. Red is the colour for January. 
Frederique at Quilting Patchwork Applique has collated the 2022 QAL, BOM, SAL's, etc. in this post. Thank you! They are many and varied and I hope you find something that inspires you this year. I especially enjoy reading your January posts to see what new projects you are starting. Meanwhile I have my work cut out for me with the finishing. 😊 Stitch On!