Sunday, September 17, 2023

Monday Meandering -- 9 - 18 - 23

It's now 2 weeks before I go on retreat with Country Piecemakers. I'm trying to focus on projects I want to either finish or move forward before going. My second focus is on planning and cutting projects to be taken with me to retreat. I'll be continuing those two plans for the next two weeks.  So here's how I did this past week. 


✅Finish customer’s quilt — finished and returned.

✅Begin sewing secret items — good start made but much to do.

✅Cut 1 new project for retreat — 1 done, probably 3 more to do.

✅Continue the clean up of the front of the cutting table — I’ve been cutting scraps into squares, rectangles and half square triangles and putting them away. 

Continue working on Ombre log cabin, cut setting triangles — setting triangles haven’t been cut but I've almost finished sewing all the blocks into rows. 

It was a pretty good week.  My secret item is moving along quite nicely.  If I'm lucky, I'll finish it this week. 

I did do a bit of off-list sewing.  

Yep, it's another Happy Block.  This one, and quite a few additional ones I hope to make, will be sent to Cynthia for her compassion quilt drive.  Here is Cynthia's link to the instructions and guidelines for this quarter's blocks. If you already read her blog, Quilting Is More Fun that Housework, you may have already participated in one of her block drives.  In addition to blocks she could use donations of large fabric pieces for backing and finished quilts.  I like to make blocks so I'll be donating blocks. I'm going to check my fabric stash to see if I have any fabric that could be a backing.  

I have four more blocks to make for Flower Song which I hope to get to top stage at retreat.  Today I was able to cut and do preliminary sewing on three of them. (IE, make the 12 half square triangles for each block!) 

One of the gals who usually helps plan and goes to retreat has taken a new job so she can't go.  Instead the committee sent each participant a "Flat Michelle" similar to the children's Flat Stanley.  Having been an elementary school media specialist I was all in favor of having Flat Michelle help me prepping for the retreat. I sent this picture to the gals who were going and to Michelle with a note saying she was helping me pick the fabric colors for the last 4 blocks.  I have to say KUDOS to the retreat committee who have planned several fun things for us to do along with our own sewing. Here are the 12 blocks of Flower Song I've already made. 👇🏼

I think they will look much better once the sashing and corner stones are added.  The last 4 blocks will be used in the corner of the borders.  Once I get the center done I'll audition the print fabric I might use. You can see the pattern to the left of Flat Michelle in the picture above.

Now on to this month's list. I keep revising what I think I'll be doing. 


Continue sewing secret items… 

Cut 2nd new project for retreat

Continue the clean up of the front of the cutting table 

Finish getting Flower Song fabric cut so I can finish the top at retreat

Cut the background fabric and start the first clue of Malted Mystery

Work on Omber Log Cabin as time permits 

I have been quilting a few customer tops and some for charities supported by my local quilt guild.  It turns out I haven't been very good about sharing them on the blog.  Today I'm sharing a top I quilted for a charity that was made by a few members of the guild. Here's a pic as it was being quilted.

I wish I had gotten a better picture after it was done.  If I remember to take a picture it is usually just before someone comes to pick up their quilt.  This one is a beautiful quilt that I really enjoyed working on. 

Here are my normal Linky parties.  I've been trying to visit a lot of the Linky parties and leave comments but time keeps getting away from me.  I'll be back later to link the rest of the parties once they go live. 

Oh Scrap

Design Wall Monday

Monday Musing

Sew and Tell 

To Do Tuesday 

One more note especially for Mac users.  I found out why I couldn't leave comments on Blogger.  I had changed my settings in Safari to prevent cross-site tracking. It turns out it also blocks me from adding comments to the blogs I read. If you are using Safari and having the same issue open Safari. Click on the word, Safari. It will open a drop down menu -- click on Settings. Then click on the Hand/Privacy. The top line says Website Tracking: Prevent cross-site tracking.   The box needs to be empty. I haven't decided if I will leave it unchecked. I might just uncheck it to read blogs and then change it to preventing cross-site tracking when I do other things. 

Not only did I learn something new about how to set my computer to be able to leave comments, I also figured out how to draw ovals and rectangles in Preview. (I did leave a few weird lines on the privacy circle...Oops!) 

I'm calling it quits for tonight.  It's another busy week. At least I haven't had a bunch of books I've reserved show up all at once! 

Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie 

Sunday, September 10, 2023

Monday Meandering 9 - 11 - 23

It's been a busy week with lots of enjoyable reading. I have been focusing on the items on my list.  But Ruthie, the long arm, had some issues.  She needed to be retimed. Something I never had done nor figured I could do.  But hubby came through and was able to fix my machine. He is amazing! Ruthie is back up and running. The problems did put me behind getting the quilt done. Let's take a look at what I did get done this week. 


✅Finish quilting customer quilt — Almost done, still 2 more rows. 

👎🏼Continue the clean up of the front of the cutting table — a few pieces were cut up and stored but lots more to do! 

✅Finish sewing baby quilt blocks together and figure out borders — Blocks together, binding added and backing and binding figured out. 

Layout Ombré log cabin and start sewing rows together (this is the Sept UFO project) — It’s laid out, still placing blocks and sewing rows. 


YIKES! This quilt is bigger than my design wall. I cleared everything off except the papers on the right side and the small quilt at the top right corner. (It just needs quilting although it the quilting needs to be dense and will need a lot of different colors. Someday I will do it.)  

I had to move it into another room and use the floor!  Here's what it looks like so far. 

This is so big I had to take the picture from the closet! I am still laying it out and correcting colors and that one block I sewed incorrectly! Oops. Many of these diagonal rows have been sewn together but I really need to make sure the colors are distributed well.  Right now I'm planning 6 rows down by 8 rows across.  Unfortunately it's hard to figure out the size because the blocks are on point.  By next week I hope to have all these rows sewn with the triangular fillers also added. If I'm lucky I might get some of the rows sewn together too.  

Here's what my plans for this week looks like. 


Finish customer’s quilt

Begin sewing secret items… 

Cut 1 new project for retreat (or more if time permits)

Continue the clean up of the front of the cutting table

Continue working on Ombre, cut setting setting triangles & sew columns together

I actually started a new quilt this week.  I had run out of leader enders so I cut two blocks of a Maple Leaf quilt using the Accuquilt Die.  Here's one of the blocks. 

A while ago I bought a fat quarter bundle from Connecting Threads of fall colors. I'll be using them to make these blocks.  Hum, if I remember, I have another bundle that has a some fabrics that would look good as maple leaves too. I'll be cutting more and in fact I probably will cut several more to take with me on retreat. (That is in 3 weeks so I'll be focused on getting projects cut and ready to sew.) 

Do you have too many ideas running around in your head? Quilts that you have seen and want to make? Or patterns you've bought but haven't made yet? I do and I never know which one to start next!  Have you got a list of quilts you want to make? So far I haven't made a list although I think that would be great for next year.  I hope I remember to do that in January. 

I'm linking up with my regular Linky parties.  Take some time to surf these sites to get some more inspiration. 

Oh Scrap

Design Wall Monday 

Monday Musings

Sew and Tell 

To Do Tuesday

I mentioned above about reading during the week.  I finished a book that every time I picked it up I got so engrossed in it I didn't want to put it down.  If you are looking for an interesting read that pulls you into the story try Only the Beautiful by Susan Meisner.  You can read a synopsis of the story on Amazon.

On another subject Monday is the 22nd  anniversary of the 9/11 attack on America.  I vividly remember the day.  I was an elementary media specialist in Maryland, a mere hour or so from Washington, DC.  It was unbelievable what was happening in DC, PA and NY.  I wish I had written my thoughts through the day but I didn't.  I know that many families had connections to people who were either killed or involved with helping others.  

Looking back to that time, I am in shock at how far apart Americans have become from when we were united against a common foe.  Although there is still danger from foreign interventions in America, my biggest concern is the Americans who are attacking our own citizens by laws to ban teaching the full story of American history, limiting citizens from voting by creating laws to make it harder to vote, and attacking the LGBTQ+ community. I hope all of us can look to what makes America a strong democracy:  making America strong does not mean denying groups of citizens equality. 

I will continue to read, quilt and keep up with news about America.  Hopefully there will be some positive shifts in the future.

Happy Quilting All! Bonnie 

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Monday, Um, Tuesday Meanderings 9 - 5 - 2023

Yep, I took yesterday off from blog writing.  We had a busy week -- well Thursday through Monday.  Thursday we went with friends to see 42nd Street at the local dinner theater.  (We just went for the show.) Friday was our community's regular Pot Luck.  Saturday nothing spectacular happened. Sunday was a pot luck for residents of our street.  The neighbors who planned this were brilliant!  Instead of the usual outdoors picnic they reserved the big room in the club house. Much nicer than sweating outside. 

Monday night we had our third (yes 3rd!) pot luck with the Spotsylvanians.  Again someone brilliant planned it for indoors. It was about 95 degrees when we drove over and the humidity was awful.  So yes, 4 days and 3 pot lucks.  (Hum, is there a movie behind those words? Or maybe a country music song?) 

I'll get back to my busy weekend after looking at my goals. 


✅Continue the clean up of the front of the cutting table — a little more progress made

✅Quilt customer quilt— not done but progress has been made

✅Bind the big pinwheel quilt— done

Finish the FCQ Equilter blocks and work on more retreat blocks — not sure if I’ll make more. 

Not too bad if I do say so myself. No pictures as most of these you've already seen multiple pictures. 

On to this week's goals.... 


Finish quilting customer quilt

Continue the clean up of the front of the cutting table

Finish sewing baby quilt blocks together and figure out borders

Layout Ombré log cabin and start sewing rows together (this is the Sept UFO project)

Just an extra note about the clean up of the front of the cutting table. I have a very large table to cut on and pile fabric on. One third always has space cleared to cut fabric out.  Opposite that is my Accuquilt Go cutter. It's always ready to use at a moments notice. On the front end is where everything gets piled. It is definitely an archeologic dig when I decide to get it cleaned up.  This time I'm going through the fabric.  Some has been put away. Some has been cut up into various sizes using the Go cutter. But it is a slow process.  I'll spend 30 minutes or so at it and then get bored or sidetracked*.  Eventually the cutting mat under the piles will be totally visible. BTW -- I can see that progress is being made. Hubby, however, can't.  I am being pretty persistent on the cleaning but have quite a ways to go.  

*Which leads me to the squirrel baby quilt. No there were no real squirrels or images of them involved.  You know what I mean -- I was distracted by fabric. I had some really old baby fabric -- squares already cut. And, I realized I'd recently seen a bit more of the fabric. Next thing I knew I had cut some other old fabric, picked a newer fat quarter and was looking for something else to round out a baby quilt. Hubby and I went out and just happened to pass the local quilt store. I just happened to have fabric samples that I was able to match up with some yardage. The helpful sales person suggested a thirties pink that worked really well from both color and design. It means I was able to finish the design of the baby quilt. The center is almost all sewn together.  My next plan is to figure out some fabric for a border. (I'm thinking the pink and a white or long as it is already in my stash! Me the yellow?) If you have any ideas please share them. I just want to get it to 33" or so. Squares are cut 5" so it currently is 31.5" so not much is needed.  

 I have a bit of the yellow and pink left. There HAS to be enough left to make a small border! 

That little fabric extravaganza happened in August. Monday I decided I had to go to JoAnns to take advantage of the Labor Day sales. I often buy backing fabric from JoAnns, especially when it is selling under $5.00 a yard.  I originally planned to buy for 3 smaller quilts. But being a good sewer I checked the stash first. Wow! Surprise, surprise. There was a piece that would work great with one of the Happy Quilt tops.  I only needed to get two pieces -- altogether only 3 yards. I let my friend Sharon sway me. (No she wasn't there but we often hit JoAnns when she's visiting as the store is so close.) Here are the fabrics -- I went a little wild. 

Wild fabric 1. (that's what I named the photo at least. It will go with the coffee top. Oops, I've never shared any pictures of that quilt. You might want to put on your sunglasses... 

👈This top is actually a little brighter than shown here. Wild. I can't believe I haven't shared any pictures of this as I finished the top January, 2022.  The orange is an old Moda Marbles and the green is a Kona solid. I'm pretty sure I bought the coffee fabric from a seller on Sew Its for Sale along with some other fabric. 

Thanks Sharon for swaying me to the wild side. 

Except, wait! There's more! I had another quilt top ready to be quilted.  You can see it here.  It was finished late last year.  👇 This fabric is less in your face but still different. 

Wild Fabric 2 isn't as wild.  But it is an interesting multi-colored fab.

I realized while I was looking for pics of the two tops that I have several quilts I never shared.  Maybe I'll get another post out in the next couple of days sharing finished quilts. (Don't hold your breath...I do get distracted quite a bit!) 

Here are my regular Monday and Tuesday Linky parties. 

Oh Scrap

Design Wall Monday

Monday Meanderings 

Sew and Tell

To Do Tuesday 

Happy Quilting All! Bonnie 

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

September Mysteries and Quilt Alongs

I'm early this month.  Which is a good thing as some of these quilt alongs have already started. Here's what I've found this month

Pat Sloan started Chicken Salad Quilt Along on Aug. 24th. It will run until Nov. 17.  She will announce one block a week from Lori Holt’s Farm Girl Vintage and Farm Girl Vintage 2.  Sign up with Pat to get notices of her go-along videos. $$ for books.

Jaqueline Steves will be starting a new snowman mystery on Sept. 25. There is a free option and a paid option  $ if chosen. 

Mystery Quilts 4 Military has started a new quilt. The Four Corners Mystery started Aug 2 with new clues released every other week.  You must join the group, MysteryQuilts4Military, at The fabric and cutting info along with the first two clues are in the Files section. 

Lisa Bongean of Primitive Gathering has two quilt alongs just starting. First is Joyful Quilt Along started Tuesday August 27. Blocks will be posted every Tuesday. If you miss a block you can buy it for  $3.00. first clue is already up so check as soon as you get the newsletter to see if it is still available free. 

Lisa’s second event is a block of the month entitled Black Star Flower Farm.  This is offered for wool or for cotton.  The first monthly block was posted in August. Here’s the home page for all the info. The patterns are free in the month they are posted and $8.00 a pattern after that. The patterns are posted on the 10th of each month for 13 months.  Hopefully you still have a  bit of time to collect the first block without paying. 

Here’s something a little different and older: Riley Blake Designs was featuring some designs for its new low volume designer collection in October of 2021.  Follow the Blue Bird to get a choice of bird designs: appliqué, paper pieced, or pieced at Sandy Gervais shared a pattern for a 26” square mat called Fall Ya All. A perfect small project to welcome fall. 

The guild that I write this column for, Faithful Circle Quilters, is having a show in early May of 2024. We will be having a $20 and Under Table of small items. I've been scouring the Internet for free patterns for small items that might work for this. Here's a couple of ideas I've found. 

Directions to make a needle minder.

Directions for several different bookmarks.

Directions for a Triangle Pencil Pouch.

Directions for a Charm Square Fabric Tray.

Hopefully these are live links and will take you right to the correct listing.  If they don't please highlight the address, copy, and paste to get to the site. 

Hope you have fun looking and making some of these quilts and little gifts. (Maybe a gift for you!)  

Many thanks to Vicki, who blogs at Vicki's Crafts and Quilting, for catching the incorrect link for Black Star Flower Farm. I'm saving the designs from that one. I may never use them but I really like how they look. 

Happy Quilting All Bonnie