Monday, May 31, 2010

Quilt top done

I worked yesterday and last night on this quilt top. I wanted two borders after the yellow border around the blocks. Wanda from suggested Kona Snow and I just happen to have some and it matched the white in the blocks. Thanks Wanda for the suggestion.
The fabric in the top was from the 40's and 50's so I was lucky to find something that worked. We changed out rental property for our birds. We had the big birdhouse there for about 4 years. The lower one was in the house with plants in the roofs. It has the openings for birds also. Then today Todd my stepson and his wife Amber came and brought me a huge Bleeding Heart plant. It is a pink one. Most of the day that area is in the shade from the Pines trees. You also go a nice view of my neighbors back yard from that angle.

This is the kind of sky we have been seeing today. In fact this is clearer than what we were seeing. Little Spring showers. Not that they amount to anything other than make it more steamy. Hope everyone had a safe Memorial Day. Chris

Sunday, May 30, 2010

100th post

This is my 100th post. These are the blocks my Grandmother hand pieced. I went yesterday and bought the sashing material. Got it at 25% off.
Here is the finished top. I need borders, but need to see if I have some white to go with the white that is in the top. 2 inch sashing of the yellow a 1inch of the white and a 3 or 4 inches of the yellow I think.

The yellow made the colors brighten up a lot. Thought about hand quilting, but my Grandmother didn't make her seams all loose and they don't all go the same direction so pressing is impossible. So machine I think is the only other way to get it done. Didn't think I had enough to say for 100 posts but I made it. Here is to the next 100. Chris

Saturday, May 29, 2010

My duties in the yard

This is the finished product. This is the flower bed in front of my house. It took 16 1/2 bags of mulch of 2cu.ft per bag.
This is before the mulch was applied. I went to a cement factory that makes cement ornaments for the yard and they carry pavers and this edging. Suppose to have been $4.75 each and I for them for $2 each. The edge of the cement walkway was the edge before and when we would have hard rains it would flow off the house so hard the mulch was all over the yard and patio. This is to keep the bulk of the mulch in the bed.

I use to be able to use 13 bags in the bed, but because the bed is deeper now with the edging being 5inches high it took more bags of mulch and at 89*F with humidity at 79% I got rather warm. Had to wait until early the next morning to finish while this side of the house was in the shade.

This is the front and it faces the west. Lots of sun in the afternoon. We have a tree starting to grow, but it will be a couple more years before it does a lot of good. You can see the shadow on the left side of the house.

The bed looks so much better the edging gives it a finished look.

It is a washed aggregate edging. I bought 23 of them and they weigh about 15lbs a piece. My back was a little sore by the time I got it all finished.

Today, no yard work until after the sun goes down some. Then I will fertilize the garden. I went fabric shopping and bought the sashing for the star blocks my Grandmother made back in the 50's. I was the first cut for the day and I got as 25% discount for my purchase.
It is 90*F outside right now and it is 5:25pm central time here. Tomorrow suppose to be hotter. Might cut sashing and get these pressed and get the top assembled. I looked in my stash for backing fabric. Thought I had enough but it is about 2 yards to short. Maybe can piece a back for it to get the back on it and then into a hoop. I can work on it in the evening while in the air conditioning. Chris

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Yard Work Never Ends

Today I was outside. The heat wasn't as bad, but bad enough. This is the Maiden Hair Iris in full bloom and the Red Penstimon blooming with little white flowers. This plant is native to the Midwest. Here are the Chives in full bloom. Need to get them cut back soon or more chives will come up everywhere. They are so pretty and really good in salads.

This it the pastel Spider Wart in full bloom. They close up at night after the sun leaves them and reopen the next morning.

These are some light colored Irises

This is my back yard and small garden. The tree over by the garage was supposedly dead and was brought here and look at it now. It is a Autumn Glory Maple

We now have a set of red steps. They were not meant to be there but they were to short so Jeff built a platform for them to sit on and we can use them properly now. We want a deck, but not enough money to go around right now.

This is the back of the house and the side of the garage. The Trumpet vine is starting to grow and be around the birdhouse Jeff made.

These Hostas have only been there 4 years. They keep getting bigger and bigger. This is on the North side of the garage.

Now you can see why I don't get any sewing done. I bought 30 bags of mulch and it is only about 1/4 of what I need to go all the way around the house, shed and garage. When more is in bloom I will take more pictures. The beans, cucumbers, squash and cantaloupe are all up from seed. So that garden is doing pretty good also.
After doing all the outside stuff today I mowed. Before 8 am I had scrubbed the kitchen floor and vacuumed the living room and then took a bath. Now off to the shower because my Right Guard isn't working any more. LOL.
I started on the mulch but it was to warm on the side I was on. So I am going out in the morning and get the West side done. We bought some edging and placed it down today. I will take more pics after the job is done. Take Care Chris

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

No pictures today

Today was my running day. I went to pay the house taxes. Went to the bank then to the gas station. On to Menard's and spent a bunch there. No quilting stuff. Then onto the Wally World not far from me. We spent a whole lot there and nothing to eat. Then went back this afternoon and bought 30 bags of Cypress mulch to put around my flowerbeds. The guy loaded it and I had to unload it. Now I have to move it around and put it down. I love my flowers, but why did I put out so many beds of them??? LOL I can't believe we are having July weather in the end of May. Hot and Humid. The green beans and cucumbers are up though. Planted just 6 days ago and they are through the ground already. Can't wait for cucumber salad and fresh green beans. We turned on the A/C the other day and haven't turned it off. Two days before we had the furnace running. The heat wears me out. Guess I am getting to old to be out doing all this running and lifting and gardening. Hope everyone had a great day. Chris

Monday, May 24, 2010

23 years together

Well where does the time go? 23 years with this guy today. We were married in the house we lived in and had family and a few friends come join us. I did the flowers and the cake was a gift. I made my suit and finished 30 minutes before I was to be in the shower. People were coming and I was trying to get dressed and get the food out and the kids already. We have 4 kids between us. The youngest was 2 and she wanted to be out in the dirt playing and not in a dress. Lots of good and bad times but we made it this far. Chris

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Color Choice

Help! I am going to get something for sashing for these blocks and get this one finished yet this Summer. Famous last words. The color value of thses blocks is Medium value. I thought about a soft yellow like the bed frame or a soft blue or green????? There is a quilt shop not to far away that has the softer colors in solids of the 30-50's. I think I will have to make a trip to check it out.
What color would you use for the sashing????? No borders just sashing. Chris

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

Doesn't the title sound like Mr Roger's song. This is Maiden Hair Iris. It grows in clumps. The purple bulge on the leaves it the flower buds.
This is the mini hothouse out in front of the house uncovered. Bell peppers the colors like orange, yellow, white, red, and purple . There is flat leafed parsley and sage and fern dill in the box also.

The red Weigelia is starting to bloom.

Another clump of the Maiden Hair Iris

Cherry Tomato plants that are in bloom See the little yellow flowers

This is called white Coral belles. They have such a dark rich textures leaf. Beside it is the Perennial Bachelor buttons

Blue Spider Wort. It is a mass of leaves and these little pansy shaped pastel Blue flowers that are only open when the sun is out.

My prize Royal Purple Smoke Bush. It is really in full glory right now. The top of it was about the eves on the house and we gave it a drastic hair cut last fall, but it is doing well.

This is another view in the sun. Full of leaves. The smoke or flower part is starting to emerge. Will take pictures of it later as it develops.


Friday, May 21, 2010

61 Years Ago

Sixty-one years ago tomorrow my parents were married. They look so young and innocent there in this picture. My Mother is 82 years old now and she lost my Father at the age of 49 to a dreadful disease. MS. They had one of those fairytale marriages. They made a pack to never go to bed mad at each other. Wasn't easy life, but they did love each other. Today we went to a wake for another family member. My Mother's sister's husband, her BIL. He was 81years old and always been around. My Mother's own mortality is facing her and she isn't handling it well. To live this long and now have so much facing her she is really not in a good place tonight. She will be better. When the first place you look in the newspaper is the obituaries just to see if you made it another day, but instead you see all your friends that are your age are passing away. I then realized I will be the oldest in the family after she is gone. That is a scarry thing. I maybe 58, but I feel 38years old. Where does the time go by so fast we turn our heads and we are 50 years old and you scratch your head and say how did that happen. Take time and smell the roses before it becomes to late. Chris

Thursday, May 20, 2010

No pictures today

I got the garden planted then I mowed the yard. Last night my son called and he was working 6pm to 6am then going to work at 7:30am at his other job and he wanted me to come and clean his house and paint today. We started this painting months ago and because of weather and my husband's health we never finished. He has someone coming tonight and he wanted some of it finished. It is trim work so It should only take a coat of paint. The bedroom upstairs and the living room. He has drywallers coming in tomorrow to mud three rooms where he has replaced drywall and insulated. So 70 miles round trip and cleaning and painting while there. Oh yeah he said Mom the bathroom floor needs cleaning too. KIDS! So no sewing today. I showed my Mom the treasures I pulled out of the closet. They were her MIL's and she laughed about the soap box. She said she took that with her everywhere to do hand sewing while she was visiting and waiting. She never drove and sometimes had a couple hour wait for a ride. Sewing on the go. I do the same thing while I wait for things to get done. Chris

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

No sewing Yesterday

I spent the day outside in my small garden space. I borrowed a small rototiller and tilled the garden. There was a lot of grass so the top I tilled off now. I raked the space and need to go till again today. The deeper you can go with it the better. I got the painting done on the shed. Another job out of the way before it gets to hot. Then my husband decided to put landscaping timbers on the right hand side of the shed. It is more garden space to maintain. I think I am putting cucumbers and butternut squash in this are. Going to rain tomorrow night so have to get the planting done.

These are some of the 62 plants we raised in the house from seed. These are bell peppers and they are getting out of the house today. Tired of watering and moving them around. They will be in the ground sometime today.
Jeff has had that surgery so he hasn't been able to help much. Then the other day he bent over and his back went out. So he has been sitting in the chair watching me do all this work. I came in last night and took a bath and collapsed. My hands are swollen from the death grip I had on the tiller. Also I think I was clamping down on my teeth and jaw. I feed like I was chewing up walnuts with the shells on.
I was bouncing around so much I thought about the weight reducing machine that had the belt around your hips to jiggle the weight off of you. I got on the scale and no weight left my hips. LOL I am ready to go, but I am letting the neighbors wake up first. Another couple of hours and I will be out in the garden to get this job done.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Garment Factory Revisited

In a couple posts back I talked about the Garment Factory where my Grandmother would go and buy fabric scraps by the pound. Well here we go a bunch of pictures of the results of her efforts. Talk about recycling. This was a soap box of rose scented soaps. She used it to put her pattern pieces for the quilt she was making and her small cut up pieces for hand sewing.
This tub of sewing stuff unfolded a long time affair my Grandmother had with hand sewing and quilting. She always had a machine, but would sit with my Grandfather at night and listen to the radio. She had three boys all off to WWII at the same time. I can't imagine the stress she was under while that was going on. Had to wait for letters to come to hear of their where abouts and also if they were alright. My Grandmother Fern Algiva Hiller-Nelson was born Dec 26, 1901. She lived in a time when WWI was raging and then onto WWII when her boys were off to war. She lived through the depression and hard times. Her Father owned most of the small town she was raised in and she worked hard in a restaurant cooking and waiting tables along with two other sisters. She learned to sew and make many beautiful dresses for herself and her sisters. She made all their wedding garments and made shirts for all her kids growing up. She made all my dresses when I was little because I was the first Grandchild and she had a girl to sew for.

This is a double wedding ring she was making for one of the DIL's for a Christmas present. My Grandmother fell ill with what we thought was the flu. Turned out her kidneys were cancerous and it spread to her lungs. She never smoked a day in her life, but died of Lung Cancer at the age of 60.

This Dresden plate pattern is all kinds of scraps from the 30's -the 50's. All sewn by hand.

This is a star pattern with the fabrics of the garment factory. There were solids and prints in the boxes of scraps she bought by the pound. She added the white and made these blocks. Looks like enough for a twin size quilt are finished.

Look at the array of fabrics from that time.
This obviously was a purchased fabric quilt It was what they called broadcloth. It was on the bolt and only 36inches wide. It is an over sized twin quilt size. My brother was the only Nelson born grandson and I am sure it would have been made for him. Needs a back and batting. The blocks were sewn together by hand and the border was sewn on by machine.

This tub of quilt stuff hasn't seen the light of day for a long time. I get it out and look every once in a while. My grandmother has been gone for 49 years. Just think of what she could have done if she had lived longer. I am almost the age she was when she passed away. I had better get to sewing. I am behind her. Chris

Friday, May 14, 2010

Got somethings done

I have been working in the extra room with the old hospital bed. I decided to make it up today and thought I don't have a quilt done for it. Then I remembered I had this quilt more like a comforter in the closet with two pillows for the back wall. It was made in the 1980's. So I got it out and made the bed for now. As you can see it has a ruffle at the edge of it. Something my Danish background would have liked. They didn't like to roll over and have your back showing so they used ruffles and extensions their bed clothes. The chest is an old ammunition box from WWII. We got it from his Dad's house and refinished it for a toy box, but it hides the toys so I stenciled the top to use it else where in the house.

This is blurry. Not a good picture taker I guess. But the room is usable in case we get company. Chris

Thursday, May 13, 2010

What is Quilting?

The dictionary says quilting is an act of making lines of stitching to hold together fabrics that are layered. Sounds right don't you agree????? Quilting has many meanings in my book. It means stitching together layers as stated, but it means love, devotion, need and therapy all rolled into one. We quilt for our loved ones. We quilt for the devotion of the process and we quilt out of need for warmth. But the big one is we use quilting as a therapy to loose ourselves in the process. Whether it be to forget the surroundings, dream of the future or to give ourselves a pat on the back that I can do this. What every your needs are or your reason for quilting it is a powerful thing. A process that has so many possibilities, but it is the most nurturing of all the things a woman does. Yes we raise our families and love and nurture them, but this is a material thing that can be touched and keep giving loving memories and the warmth of heart and soul. When giving a quilt as a gift your spreading the love. When receiving a quilt you are the recipient of the love and you're in turn returning love. How more meaningful of process can this quilting thing be?? So teach the meaning to the young ones what quilting is and can be for them. Dream of the World wrapped in a quilt and keep the love ongoing for the process of quilting. I now I am going to keep my quilting love going.

Flash flooding

No I am not kidding. The weather was so bad last night the rain and lightening woke me up. The rain came down to a point that the water ran out of the fields and traveled down the streets in our community with mud and corn stubble everywhere. They had to use a skid loader to clear the streets this morning. The highway department was out with a snow blade on to scrape the highway. There was so much crap and mud everywhere. We had over 3.7inches of rain in a few short hours last night. No wind damage, but a lot of muck to clean up. All the mulch has washed out of my flower beds and is everywhere. You walk through the grass and it squishes. Hope everyone else is safe and hopefully dry. Chris

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Purse update

Here is the inside. I made a pocket with velcro to secure a checkbook. This is the front. The idea was on a blog called A Tadd More. Tammy Tadd was the original designer. I made mine out of denim and changed the size and the shapes of the flap and the purse shape.
There are times when I hold my purse up against my body because of being in a crowded place. This back was made to show that it looked like something too. Thank you Tammy for the inspiration. I stalled making it several times just because I didn't have the confidence
to complete it. It is done now.
I plan on making some Hobo purses now with flowers for the accents on them. I have tons of denim and several Family and neighbors want one. I will post when I get more made. Chris