Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Lost week

Had a relapse of the miserable cold that I had three weeks ago.  Yuk!  On top of that The Big Guy got it, too.  So not only was I sick as a dog, so was he.  The last week has disappeared in a haze of cold medicine, dirty tissues, coughing up lungs, hot tea and all the other accroutrements of a virus.  In the meantime, I was/am also dealing with an infected eye - can  you say "poooor baaby!".

I have managed to read four books and start two new quilts (don't mention that in front of my pile of WIPs!).  As I mentioned last time I was really inspired by  the silk quilts on exhibit at the EBHQ show.  So I am cutting silk for a "Patch-it" wall hanging.  The hard part of that is the directions are on my stolen computer so I am relying on my memory - uh oh.  Am going to see if I can find them online while I am here at my daughters\'s and have internet access.

The other quilt is for my friend's granddaughter.  I made one several years ago for her older brother and the one I just finished is for her younger brother.  So she is next in line.  Her name is Kestrel.  I found a fabric panel with hawks on it.  The closest to a Kestrel is a Peregrine falcon so that is what she gets.  It is pretty scrappy.  I am using mermaids, monkeys, chickens, kittens, maybe puppies if I have any of that left, maybe food from my two food quilts.  I want to have lots of stuff a four-year-old will like and recognize.  The beginnings of it are up on my design wall and I have started piecing it.  The back will either be Disney Princess fabric or tea party (as in china cups and teapots, not the politics).  Haven't decided yet.

I'm also trying to draw more.  Our town is having an art show and sale and I want to enter it.  I have been doing a couple of sketches in the sketchbook the grandson gave me for Christmas and driving over here today I had an idea.  So will work on that and hopefully finish it in time to enter it.

Our town had a big trash pickup today.  Yesterday afternoon we went through a big pile of stuff on the patio and tossed out a lot of it.  We also found my cast iron griddles!  I have been fussing about them since we moved.  When I couldn't find them I thought I had left them in the trailer.  But no, they were in with stuff on the patio.  Now I can make more than one pancake at a time!  The patio looks so much better.

It is raining again.  So glad, we really need it.

That is it for the week.  My camera is on the blink, poor old thing so still no pictures.  Soon I hope.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

A finished quilt!

Friday night I finished the "Doggy Love" quilt which I intend to give to our friend's grandson, Colby.  Did the whole quilt myself - from the design through the piecing, machine quilting and finally the binding.  Pretty proud of myself :)

Went to the EBHQ show Saturday with Artquiltmaker artquiltmaker.com and two other friends.  This year the show broke with tradition and used the Craneway Pavillion in Richmond as the venue.  Other than being a little harder to get to it was an excellent venue.  The light is fantastic.  Often no flash was needed to take pictures.  Three of the walls are windows with a spectacular view of the bay.  The Pavillion is quite an old building which was designed by Albert Kahn as a  Ford Assembly Plant, the largest on the West Coast, in 1931.  It is now part of the Rosie The Riviter National Historic site as it was used during World War Two to build tanks.

The space is large but not as big as the hotel/convention center where it has been held in the past.  I think there were fewer vendors and quilts/wearable art on display, too.  A sign of the times, I guess.

The catering was done by the Boilerhouse Restaurant, which is next door to the venue and part of the building.  The food was excellent but the wait, even at two o'clock when we ate, was an hour long.

I was inspired by the "Silk Club" exhibit to pull out my silk bin and see if I can come up with a quilt.  I will either make a stripe triangle or the "Patch-it" pattern I tried out when I was thinking about the Grandson's food quilt. See the 3-13-11 blog post for a look at that pattern.  It is perfect for a pillow top or a small wall quilt.  It does waste lots of fabric.  I don't mind so much for the stripey fabric because I have LOTS of it and it was free.  But the solid color I bought.  I do have lots of it, have had it for years, and have no other plans for it.  So GET OVER IT, SELF!!!! Just use the stuff.  Then you can buy more :)

One of these days we will get internet again and I will be able to add pictures.  Probably not for a couple more months.  Then I will do an all picture blog post with a blog reference for each picture!

A sad note.  All the pictures of the Big Guy as Santa were on my stolen computer.  So I have none of those great, fun photos anymore.  Oh well....

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Rain, rain......

Started raining this morning about 10:30.  We are supposed to get two inches this week!  The winter so far has been very dry - only .5 inches in two days of rain up to today.  So I am glad we are having a good storm.  However, I do wonder why it had to start today, the only day of the week I have to drive over hill and dale to do my grandma business?  Murphy's law, I guess.

I have good new!  My old computer is working again!  The other day I decided to see if it would start.  I picked up the case it was in and smacked it on the floor a few times.  Then I took out the computer and turned it on.  Lo and behold - the mailto:d@# thing worked!.  So now my mission is to get wifi into the house again.  I'm thinking about getting one of those mobile hotspot thingies.  My main concern is price, second concern is reliability.  Don't want an inexpensive service that will go bankrupt like our last one did.  Any suggestions?

Had a good weekend.  Sunday the Big Guy and I went to Turlock to the Carnegie Art Center to see the Yvonne Porcella retrospective.  It was a small show, small venue, excellently done!  My overall impression is of lots of red silk!  The quilts require time to view them and benches were provided to give the viewer a place to sit while looking!  As everyone who is familiar with Porcella's work knows, it is exuberant!  And mostly very large. And, as I mentioned, red.

My camera was out of battery so I took pictures with my cell phone until the ticket taker came and told me no pictures were allowed (oops!).  I tried to send the pictures to my e-mail but my phone is still somewhat of a mystery to me and I couldn't figure out how to do that.  Need to talk to my techno nephew in Santa Barbara for some help.

The exhibit was inspiring for me, too. I remembered all the silk I have and am thinking of doing something with it. Something small that is easily finished.  I have had a quilt on my sewing table that I haven't worked on for a couple of weeks.  Yesterday I sat down and almost finished the machine quilting.  I have one more row of design at the bottom to do.  Needed a reference so pulled out three of my binders with reference material in them and looked through all of it.  That was fun.  I found lots of stuff I had forgotten about and lots of inspiration but not the reference I wanted (machine quilted water).  So then I searched through my small library of quilt books and found the Kathy Sandbach book I bought when I took a class from her years ago.  It had exactly what I needed but it was time to make dinner so never got back to it yesterday.  May work  on it tonight when I get home and can't sleep because I will have drunk at least one large cup of coffee on the drive back over hill and dale!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A little whining and the Manteca Quilt Show

Well, Boo Hoo...I still haven't been able to replace my stolen computer.  Am at my daughter's house using one of theirs.

This year I was able to purchase health insurance! So I dutifully made an appointment in January for a physical.  It is now March (as we all know) and I am finally finished with all the specialists my new physician sent me to.  I also have the mother of all cold-sore throat- fluish sicks I have had in years.  Going on week three!  I blame it on going to doctor's offices and hospitals multiple times.  I am never sick and I hate this! 

Oh well, no one likes a whiner so I'll stop.

We've started planting our garden.  This morning, before coming to my grandson's I put in two different kinds of lettuce in our former herb garden.  We were going to put it in a garden box but we haven't managed to get that built yet.  So the lettuce is in the herb garden (which is cool and shady) and the onion sets are going in the ground.  We haven't decided where the blueberry bush, the blackberry vine or the tomato plant are going yet.  Maybe the Big Guy will have them planted when I get home.

I read something in the Chronicle this morning about blackberries.  The author said he thought there was one mother of all blackberry vines circled underground around the whole earth and they just pop up where ever you don't want them! But the plant was on sale and the berries are so good!  We will do our best to contain the plant.  Our plan is to have a trellis for it and keep it trimmed!

We also planted (last month) an apricot tree and a cherry tree.  They are about three feet tall and each had eight or ten blossoms and now have eight or ten leaves.  Very cute!  Maybe we will be eating eight or ten apricots and cherries later in the year!

The Big Guy's doctor sent him (at his request) to physical therapy.  It has helped him quite a bit.  He can now ride his bike.  He and Roxy dog go out every other day or so.  Roxy dog runs and BG rides.  They both love it and they both need it!  Roxy has lost  her little waist and is getting neck wrinkles so the exercise is good for her.

I went to the Manteca Quilt Guild show on Sunday.  It is a small show - only one hall of quilts - but it was very nice.  The featured artist, Jan Ayers, is a guild member.  She is very prolific.  There were four rows of her work.  I neglected to see the dates of the work so don't know what the time span was.  Her color choices for the quilts were lovely.

For the first time ever I did the show Make-n-Take.  So now I have a cute new pincushion!

I also went to two demonstrations.  The first was by Judy Mullins.  She showed the audience how to make a strip pieced quilt in a day with 800" of 2 1/2" x 40" strips.  She suggested a jelly roll or leftover fabric.

The second demo was on dolls and a really easy vest.  The dolls were really cute but I don't stuff doll arms!  The vest was just an oval with two circles.  The one shown was two pieces of jersey but I think fleece would be nice if the edge had some decorative feature.

The guild always has a jumble sale, too.  This year I bought some buttons and got ideas for Christmas presents.  Looked at all the books but nothing caught my fancy.

Found a piece of fabric for a quilt I have planned.  It has a hawk on it. The quilt is for my friends granddaughter, Kestrel.  And I think I will do the strip piecing bit I learned at the show.  I am in the middle of machine quilting the one for Kestrel's baby brother, Colby.  Almost done with it - just the bottom border to go.  Then the binding - which is already cut.

Well, maybe next time I am able to blog it will be on my own computer!