Sunday, April 21, 2019

Monday Meanderings 4 - 22 - 2019

Happy Earth Day!
Before I get to my progress and goals this week I'd like to take this Earth Day to share some sad statistics about plastic. Plastic has invaded the oceans, the mountains and even Arctic ice.  Here's some info from Ocean Conservancy, specifically, an article on trash free seas. 

"From plankton to whales, animals across ocean ecosystems have been contaminated by plastic. Plastic has been found in 59% of sea birds like albatross and pelicans, in 100% of sea turtle species, and more than 25% of fish sampled from seafood markets around the world."

Hum, am I getting a side of plastic with that shrimp I love?  Or maybe my fish tacos should be named fish and plastic tacos?  Plastic is being ingested by ocean creatures. And, we enjoy eating them. This is another reason to clean our oceans, lakes and rivers of plastics.  It's time to really reconsider our love of plastics and start looking at what we as individuals can do to help contain plastic.  You can read about the research being done on plastics in our marine food chain at National Geographic.

Can we as individuals make a difference?  You bet we can.  I started years ago by giving up straws as often as possible.  I never take one at fast food restaurants.  I ask waiters not to bring straws to the table, I don't use them.  I talk to wait staff about only giving straws out if asked. And, I'm tickled to see one of my favorite restaurants near our beach house is thinking the same way.  This was left on our table recently.  (Ironic how it was laminated with plastic, but it is a start.) 

My closest friends have mentioned they hesitate to take a straw when we go out to meals together. A start but I really wish they would think about it all the time not just when we are together.  Another friend has bought collapsable, reusable straws for her family.  

My next attempt at making a difference was to bring my own metal silverware to our neighborhood's monthly pot luck instead of using the supplied single use plastic knives, forks and spoons.  It's easy to wrap a set of silverware in a cloth napkin and bring them with us.  We've convinced another couple to do the same thing. The more I talk about it, the more likely it is that others will start doing the same thing.  It's so easy to carry your own.  

Does one of these ideas seem easy to you?  If so please help our oceans by changing some habits. It's pretty easy to skip using a straw every once and a while or all the time.  

Now back to our regularly scheduled quilting blog! 

I spent most of this week wrestling with a quilt called Mystery of Powhatan. It was a mystery,  it was fun, it's attractive, but we had no idea how big it was going to be!  And, that answer is HUGH once the whole quilt was done.  After I finished it I stashed it in the "to be quilted" closet as I didn't really need another queen size quilt. Fast forward to Hands 2 Help 2019. One of the suggested recipients is Carolina Hurricane Quilt Project.  They are looking for twin, full and queen size quilts. Hum, I'd already bought a wide back for the quilt.  Yes!  Time to get this out and quilt it.  Except, with the two borders it is bigger than the wide back I purchased.  So, I decided to take off one of the borders and make it narrower. Or so I thought. So, then I decided to take off the inner border and just not use it. In the end I took 4" off each side and it still is a healthy 81 x 104ish inches with the final border smaller.  

I carefully measured the backing.  It would be really close especially when 5 or 6" would be used to clamp the backing to the rollers of Ruthie, the long arm.  So I sewed some additional strips of fabric on the top and bottom of the top so I could clamp the excess fabric and have enough for the backing. All right. Let's get this quilt done. Um, not so fast. I have been basting my quilts to the batting and backing instead of just letting the batting and top float over the rail.  Good thing I did that because the batting was about 3" too short for the quilt top.  OH GOOD GRIEF!  Easily solved but not all that quick.  I trimmed off the batting on one side as I worked down the quilt.  Then I used that piece and hand stitched it to the end of the batting.  And then, I let Ruthie do the rest of the magic and it is now quilted. 

Later this week I'll figure out the binding hopefully using the excess I cut off of the border.  If not, I don't know what I'll do for a binding.... I'll take a better picture when I get it bound.  

I made it through all of my goals this week.  The hand quilting part was a very short time but I did get some work done on it.  There's still 4 more sashing pieces needed between the rows of granny blocks but at least progress is being made on all fronts! 
April 15, 2019

Load and quilt Mystery of Powhatan quilt
Hand quilt on old Christmas quilt
Continue sashing granny blocks for larger quilt

Finish border on snowflake quilt

And this week...
April 22, 2019
Bind Mystery of Powhatan quilt
Hand quilt on old Christmas quilt
Finish sashing granny blocks 
Quilt snowflake quilt
Make pillow shams for our bed 

Have you ever succeeded in getting 4 lively grandchildren to stand up nicely, smile (without making monster faces or sticking tongues out) and generally look put together for a group picture?  Well, no, neither have I recently.  But I did catch this picture of them being swung on a hammock today. They were having a blast. 
From left to right Sophie, Theo, Ellie and Natalie: cousin fun. 
I'm linking up with my regular Monday parties: Oh Scrap, Monday Making, and Moving It Forward.  You know the drill -- I'll come back tomorrow to link up with parties that haven't started yet.  And, yes, I will definitely be spending time blog hopping this week.  

Happy Quilting All! Bonnie 


  1. It's so nice to see someone else concerned about the plastics we are filling the world with. I haven't used straws for years, and we always use real plates, cups, and silverware at parties at my house. Keep up the good work! And congrats on the quilt.

  2. ❤️ the hammock photo - smiles and precious memories captured. I share your concern about plastics. Whatever happened to paper straws?

  3. Thanks for your Earth Day post, Bonnie. I generally skip straws, preferring to sip. (The exception is milkshakes, but I've been very good about not getting those (or any fast food).) Fun to see your grands all together. Your currently quilting project is a reason to have a stash of flimsies on hand.

  4. We recycle everything we can. I stopped accepting plastic straws about a year ago (except for carryout drinks and milkshakes), and we have started using reusable bags at the grocery (it will be state law in TN soon, anyway). Our church and the garden club in our community both request you bring your own utensils. I really need to re-think my dependence on single-use (a/k/a Zip-Loc) plastic bags. Any suggestons?

  5. Love the grands photo--they are having so much fun--
    I have noticed that Walmart now has packages of paper like straws now for
    sale in all the beverage aisles and these decompose somehow--and I have found some silverware that is strong like plastic--bit again decompose(is that the right word???)
    In Fl I drink alot of ice tea--so will be getting these new straws for there when I return!
    Thanks for what you do and for the reminder--oh and at least 75% of the time I take my cloth shopping bags--and I know that helps too!!
    luv, di

  6. Congrats on achieving your goals for the week and (obviously) having a good time with the grands on Easter!!!

  7. I love to read of others’ eco concerns and practices. We recycle everything we can, compost, and skip plastics as much as possible. I have my own cloth grocery AND PRODUCE bags. I still have plastic tableware from years ago, but if we use it (outdoors or picnics), we bring them in and wash/reuse them. We jokingly call it our “best tableware” because we bring it out when we have company and don’t have enough silverware to go around. Personally, I wish they’d start charging people for plastic bags in grocery stores and straws in restaurants; it might get people off their duffs.

  8. I've used reusable straws for a long time and love them! It is handy to have a skinny scrubby thing to clean them, but they get run through the washer. My mom takes a box with real flatware for her whole table to her monthly union luncheons. Their table is always the most popular because they have real silverware and a centerpiece ;-)

  9. I don't use straws, never did! For quilt meetings, I bring "real" glasses (in glass) for everybody for appetizer time, and ladies bring their own cup for coffee and tea time

  10. We rarely use straws (only for too go orders any more). Looks like you've got a good start on finishing off a UFO and a great place to send it. Looks like the grands had a very fun Easter. Happy stitching this weekend.


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