Friday, September 28, 2012

Little of this and a little of that

Here is the progress that is going on. I have three projects in the works and none of them are close to being done. Shame on me. I have been cutting and stitching every minute I can find and some minutes I need to be doing something else.
Today I need to vacuum and get the big chunks up and then I need to spend some time with my Mother. She has had a bad case of allergies lately and she needs groceries. So today is the day. We are going to go see what is available for her to fix on a quick go to meals. She hates to cook anymore.
The hand applique is being done during the night watching TV.
The cutting and piecing is going well in the morning for an hour or so. The pieces still need a hexie appliqued in the center to cut out the huge bump. Lots of bright colors going on here.
I really need to get some of this pulled together and get this show on the road. I am going to go and get ready to go shopping. yipppppeeeeee!!!!!! Chris

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Sewing and canning and freezing

No I am not cold. I have been freezing some vegetables for the freezer for this Winter. I bought some broccoli and  cauliflower reasonable and blanched then for the freezer. I have such food additive allergies I do all my own cooking and from scratch. Lots of work, but less sodium and no preservatives.

I have three main things I am working on. The EPP quilt and it is only the borders. Also a hexie bright quilt and then the applique and double nine patch. I think today I got the last of the hexie fabric cut and pieced together for the hexie blocks. I now need to trim and sew together the blocks. I have the border fabric for it already. The EPP quilt I am slowly making enough flowers in miniature for the borders. The hand applique, yes I had appliqued the blocks didn't like the machine stitching. I need a new machine I think. This one is a little outdated and I need something with a little more power. Oh well that will be another day.

My 6 year old grandson is coming to stay with us on Saturday. He doesn't come real often and not to much by himself.  I wish the other two were going to be here to play with him, but Grandpa and I will keep him busy. We have a new game console for the TV and I don't think he has ever played with this one before. Should be an interesting day.

I need to do some cleaning. I keep saying that and it doesn't get done. The health department will come soon and shut me down I am afraid. You surely can't eat off of my floors. I need to wash windows and get walls washed. But I will get to it before the holidays or maybe before then. See how much ambition I have. Chris

Monday, September 24, 2012

REaping the Harvest

Last night it frosted pretty hard so we had gone out and picked veggies before the frost. Today I am freezing the pickings. These are sweet peppers. I cut the tops off and hull the seeds and veins out of them. Wash and dry and pack in freezer bags. I use them all Winter long.
I went to the local Aldi Store and found cauliflower on sale for 99 cents the other day and bought two of them I can't grow it for that price. I cleaned it up and any dark spots were cut off.
I make individual bags enough for a meal and get them ready for freezing.I cut them up into bite sized pieces and blanch them in boiling water. Bring water to a boiled and drop the veggies into it and bring it back up to a full boil for 3 minutes. Drain and shock it in cool water. Cool and pack into bags.
I make the amount we would eat per meal. If I have company I get out more than one bag. Let it cool before closing to not cause ice crystals from forming. 
I then place the smaller bags into a larger gallon sized bag to pull out only what I nee. Save Save SAve! Chris

Age old Story and the law

Yes the subject was read about in another blog recently. Authors of and Author of a quilt book were offended by the use of a copyrighted book to gain money and what is called mass production of that pattern. I am not a lawyer and never will be. I am not here to question the law by any means, but is a line drawing fair game for use or a block that was used 125 years ago copyrighted?

This author whom I will not mention because I am not defending her or the blog poster, says anything she has in printed matter is copyrighted.

Well is this what is wrong with out society? We want the rights and the glory and yet does it really belong to us as individuals. This is almost as bad as the attorneys that follow ambulances to the ER.

I will never be an author and I try to give credit in my posts if I use even a small part of another person's ideas or patterns in my blog. The question I have with all of this is a 9-patch copyrighted??? Not after all this time, but others who publish this type of pattern in their books feel they have the rights to the pattern.

The EQ programs also leave a big question if they are copyrighted because several can use them and maybe all come up with the same design. Where does it stop????? Chris

Saturday, September 22, 2012

My efforts

Yesterday while sewing and it was raining outside I decided to make some beef vegetable soup. I used my canned tomatoes from my garden and my canned green beans. Frozen corn and frozen peas. carrots and celery and potatoes. The meat is browned 80-20 ground chuck and onions that are drained after cooking in a skillet. You can add beef bouillon to your tomatoes and I add about two quarts of water to the soup. 
I used as much as I had in vegetables, I was short on corn, but had enough to work. I cooked all of it together and then ladled into jars and sealed. I prepared my canner and placed the jars in the canner and processed for 75 minutes at 10# of pressure. They look really good to me.
The only thing I found with research you can not can with soups is anything with milk or cheese and needles in it. You can can the other ingredients for these soups and add that after you open it to reheat them. I plan on doing some chicken noodles with out the noodles and add them later. 
I think this will be a quick go to meal this winter when we are outside getting rid of all the snow YUK! Yes it is coming I am sure of that. Always does. Chris

Friday, September 21, 2012

Severeal Hours Later

The applique block needs to be sized. I machine appliqued it and not sure I like it. I do not have the buttonhole stitch on my machine. I did you a modified blind hem stitch.
 I think I will probably go forward with this one anyway. I have plenty of material like this that I can make another one and give the first one away as a gift.
The background is almost a tea dyed darker off white muslin look. It was regular fabric not muslin though. Now to cut out all the shapes and get the glue stick out and go to town. I also need to make all the double 9 patch blocks. Ok I am at a dilemma again. Borders and backing. I have the hardest time with these parts of the quilt. Off to get supper made. I canned 7 quarts of Vegetable soup today also. Plus all the dishes that went along with the cooking part of this process. Chris

Foolish me couldn't resist

Freezer paper fusing. Yes I am trying a different quilt for hand work. I am winding down on the EPP that I made with the Zinnias Forever quilt.
This is a Kim Diehl pattern. I have had this book for a longtime and decided I needed a different project to pick up and work on. Still not decided if I want to hand or machine applique. I am using elements from this quilt to make it different.
Here is the double 9 patch block I made for my first sample. I plan on one applique block. Not sure if doing it by hand or by machine at this point.
Here are the elements for this first two blocks. We have to go to the lumberyard today so we will see how far I get with this process.

I plan on making some vegetable beef soup today. It is cool and time for a change from all the salads and sandwiches. I plan on canning the soup in quart jars for later use also. I found out you can can the soup for 75 minutes at 10# of pressure and it will last for a long time. Hope you have a great day. It is cloudy here and suppose to rain. Chris

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Home again

Well we didn't go very far. Only about 5 miles away. My husband had a procedure done this morning at the hospital. We left about 6:10 am and returned by 9:30 am. He is sleeping on the couch and I am tempted to lay down also. 3:45 am was early for me. I woke up before the alarm went off.

Everything went fine and don't return to doctor for a year.
I took some hand sewing with me and got a little farther with a scrappy hexagon quilt I am making by hand. I am at a stand still with it for now until I get some more colors cut for it.

We had frost this morning. So I guess Fall is here officially if not current with the calender. It was on the roofs here. I think it was predicted for low lying areas and we are low along the river. Won't be long now that we will be hauling out winter gear and getting ready to be snowed in. After all the heat and drought this Summer I am ready for some cooler weather, but not -30* F weather though. Stay warm Chris

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Sewing going on, but everything looks like it did before

Lot of early morning stitching. Trying to get some things pulled together. The string pieces for placemats are in the process. I have 9 of the 12 of them done. It was suggested that I should make a whole quilt doing this type of sewing. LOL One inch strips for a whole quilt OMG!

The yard has been getting cleaned up some, but other things like falling and bruising myself got in the way. Still not over all the aches and pains from that little adventure. Then tomorrow is mowing day again. Boy awful to get old.

I have decided I need a body transplant. I need one at about 120lbs and in really good shape like a 25 year old. Not this overweight and 60 year old body I have. Wonder what that will cost me??? I need to buy fabric so I will put that request on hold. Chris

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Checking in

Checking in and some sewing and some major pain. Yes you read that right. I have gotten these place mats to this point and need find some backing for them and get them finished. The string piecing in the center wasn't enough for the size I wanted. I bordered it with a black print and then I had all these HST's pieced but not trimmed. So I got them out and trimmed away until I had enough. Better size now and yet they are not to big. The pain part. Well I pulled a "Chris". I think I can do everything and as I get older I can't. We moved the wooden steps from my neighbors house to our house on dollies and that went fine. After it was beefed up and rebuilt with more wood we went to pick it up to put it back on the dollies and I slipped and fell to my right knee.

I hit the inside of my left arm on one of the steps and it is really bruised. My right knee is swollen and my back and right hip hurt like heck. As I said I pulled a "Chris".

Jeff said why do you do that stuff. So I have to talk to him before we do this again so we have our signals straight to avoid this kind of injury again. I will heal, but there isn't enough heating pads and pain meds to cover the discomfort right now. Didn't sleep well last night because of it. Oh Well!

Today I am suppose to take my Mom shopping and we have a road trip to get there. Should be an interesting day. LOL

Hope all of you are smarter than me and have no injuries going on. Chris

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Going to be missing for awhile

Not really going anywhere, but we have so much yard work I will be involved in getting some of it cleaned up. I will try posting some. We love our yard, but as we get older it becomes more to keep up with. This year was hard because we watered so much and it was so hot to get out and pull weeds. We have one entire flowerbed to take out. We had trumpet vine growing there and all the runners have sent up shoots. So we need to kill everything off and start over.

We now have a place to take all the yard refuge so it will save on buying paper bags to dispose of the stuff. That was costing a bunch when you have so much to get rid of.

I am still going to try and get some hand work done while trying to relax at night after all this yard work we plan on doing. Keep stitching. Chris

Saturday, September 8, 2012

So far here is the progress

Well here we go. This is all stitched down and waiting now for a colorful butterfly. Have to think on that one. I can see a butterfly with blue spots like the Painted Lady. This is an awful picture, but you can see the intersection of the stems. They are 1/4 inch across. I cut a 3/4 inch bias piece and folded in the raw edges. Lots of stitching.

Now to trace the design and layout and then get the other sides marked. I also have to make more flower combinations for each side. I think each side will be a different color grouping. Hey it is scrappy might as well keep it that way. Chris

Questions Questions are running through my head

Guess what I woke up with a headache. I dreamt all night long about getting this EPP quilt done. What do I do about marking it for quilting? What do I do about the quilting design and many more questions.

Obsession with quilting and the fact that I dream about it is scary. I could sit in a chair for hours and not move from quilting or being at the sewing machine. But reality hits. Why would I do that? I have so much to do and I don't get enough done as it is.

Do you question your judgement on a decision about what you have done during the day? I sat in my chair last night which needs a slipcover at this point. It is wearing out. I asked myself this question. What did you do all day? Well it was laundry, taking my Mother to do some errands and I made dinner. Not a lot of accomplishment.

I still haven't made it to the fabric store yet. It opened on the 31st of last month. I must be sick. I really would like to go look for a book on quilting I want and also a nosey part of me wants to see what they have. When will I get there?

I asked myself the other day Why do you procrastinate so long and doing something? Am I lazy? Am I scared of making a decision? I use to jump in no questions asked. Is this what age does to you????

I guess asking questions is a learning process we all go through. Here I am at 60 years old and still asking questions. Will this process ever come easier? Now I asked the questions more often. Is it old age or wiser and not wanting to get my feet deep in the mud when it isn't necessary?

Do you ask yourself Questions and do you make yourself nuts by second guessing everything you do?? Chris

Thursday, September 6, 2012


I have put off doing this. I finally cut some stems and then decided I needed to get started on this applique work on the borders. I cut the stems and started laying them out. Well I wanted to be sure the flowers were seen right so I pinned and re pinned several times. I have changed leaves and flowers as I first laid them out. I have a center on the peach flower to add and I have several leaves to get put in the right places, but I think you can see it will be colorful. The flowers are smaller pieces of the EPP. I cut some of them down to make a different sized flower as if they were just opening up.

I need to get this side done and make a tracing of the layout so I can duplicate it on the other three sides. Yes it is out of sequence because I wasn't sure what I was going to do when I started. Nothing like flying by the seat of your pants and hoping it works out.
I figure jump in and it will work out sooner than later. Chris

More stitching

Here are 6 of these string pieced panels. I am going to make them into place mats and I need to get them pressed starched so they are all the same width and trimmed to be the same length. I think I am going to cut a narrow strip and stitch on all four sides in a small black print. Then I plan on making some small either HST blocks or small 4 patch blocks to border on the outside. We refinished our dinning room table several years ago and the porcelain plates I have have a rough edge on the bottoms. With kids here all the time I want something on the table to protect the finish.

Where has this week gone? Here it is Thursday evening all ready and I feel like it should be Tuesday. I guess I lost a day or two over the Dr's appointment deal and not getting that done when we thought we were suppose to.

I am going out to the laundry room now and make some spray starch to get these panels press properly. Chris

Boy did I make a mistake

Yesterday my husband was suppose to have a procedure done at the hospital. The Friday before we went to the Dr's office and he wanted to do it next week. Well we got up and ready got to the hospital and we weren't on the schedule in admitting. So they called the department and they said we were on the schedule for the 19th. I didn't take my paper with me so I didn't know for sure. Well guess what the Dr. wanted it for this next week, but the medical assistant made it for the 19th. I should have had the paper with me and I should have looked at it better. So our whole day was shot because we were geared up to get this over and done with.

So in two weeks we go through this again.
We got 8/10 of and inch of rain the other day and we needed it. It is a little to late for the farmers, but the yards and gardens needed it. Suppose to be cooler today also. We had mowed on Tuesday evening and I have trim mowing to get done today as soon as the grass dries out.

We wanted to finish the staining on the deck, but the heat got to use the other day and then it was wet yesterday so maybe we can accomplish that today also.

You should be proud of me. I haven't been to the new fabric store yet that opened on the 31st. It is a Joann's. To begin with with all our expenses and the deck we haven't had a lot of extra cash laying around. So I haven't been tempted to get into using what little money I have. I am doing with what I have. I am proud of myself. The next time I go to town I may just walk through it to see what they have.

I do garment sewing also so the fact I can find a zipper or hem tape easier is a plus for me.

I have a bunch of corduroy and I want to make a barn jacket for me. I think I will look for a pattern for a jacket. I really do like garment sewing, but haven't done a whole lot of it since my granddaughter wants ready made clothing. I also need to make some heavier shirts for my husband. He wears in layers and some flannel shirts or a corduroy shirt might be in order there also.

Well I need to get myself in gear to get something done today hopefully it is a wrong thing. LOL Chris

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

What is your day going to be?

Well I am up early. Suppose to be a scorcher outside and we have lawns to mow and decking to be painted. Guess I will be outside for part of the day anyway.

We are waiting on a box to be delivered with a mower part in it. Hopefully it gets here. If not we can mow without the part it just won't be as even.

Tomorrow we have to be at the hospital at 6:30am to have a procedure done for my husband. It will take 3 hours minimum from start to finish. Then a day of rest for the rest of the day.

I have a bunch of straightening to do. I got rid of several appliances that I haven't used for several years yesterday and I need to clean cupboards and see if there is anymore to be gotten rid of. I don't cook for large crowds anymore other than family and I don't need all this extra stuff sitting in the cupboard collecting dust.

I have one cupboard I would like to empty and just use for staple items for cooking like sugar and flour and things like that. I need to buy some more storage containers for food storage. I remember my Mom had old recycled lard cans for flour. It was a huge can and an air tight lid.
Can't find anything like that anymore. I can find containers, but not food grade plastic.

I mentioned the other day about buying extra flour, well I have decided the best thing to do with it to keep it fresh and no bugs is to freeze it. If I put it in smaller containers and place in the bottom of the freezer it will keep better than on the shelf and the potential for infestation is there. Not that I have had bugs here, but I don't want to chance it.

The day is coming that I am going to have to start cooking for my Mother. She isn't eating well. She does maybe once a week. But if I cook it for her and take it to her to finish baking or heat it up she does so much better at her meal choices. I need to get some smaller containers for freezing and also some baking dishes that are one serving sized. She doesn't like leftovers.

I have seen some canning jars that are glass, but they can be microwaved and not have any issues with chemical interaction with your food. You can get them wide mouthed so that the opening is easy to serve out of. The canning season is about over and maybe some will be marked down in price soon. My intentions are good we will see how this goes. So I am planning and trying to figure out what I need to prepare for in case the weather gets ugly this winter. Chris

Monday, September 3, 2012

Gift time

To start with Taylor was here and she had cut out her rag quilt blocks the last time she was here. So yesterday she wanted to sew. More cutting of batting, but she is doing this all herself. She now knows how much time is used in making a quilt. I am really proud of her and her efforts. She even picked out the fabric herself. This is another tub of strips I have cut while handling fabric for other projects. I wanted something to sew on waiting for my husband to come in last night from helping a neighbor with his lawnmower. They are 1 inch strips that were cut off a larger piece of fabric as I handled it. All colors and lengths, but all usable fabric.

This is going to be gifts for Christmas. I sewed them into sheets of fabric almost the size of a place mat. I am then going to make some small HST blocks to border the string pieced mats.

I got three and a half of them made in a couple hours last night. These are dry pressed and I need to steam them to get them to lay flat. No wasting of fabric. I cut a length off and add to another piece to make it long enough.

I have some pieces of batting I am going to use to make these a finished piece. I have some non-descript fabric for the back ground. Not sure what I will use for binding. More pictures later. Chris