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Monday, July 6, 2015

Dinner on the 4th...well, really the 5th!

Darrin and Kris invited us over for a post 4th of July dinner on Sunday, which was FANTASTIC!  Although, we have never been to either of the kids homes (Dawn or Darrin's) and NOT had a great meal!  Darrin loves to grill and smoke meat so of course he grilled tenderloin and grilled salmon, which were awesome!!  

Of course, Kris is also a great cook and made some wonderful dishes!   It's always hard to stop eating when we are invited to dinner.   I was in charge of  baking my 'famous' lemon pie as well as a strawberry pretzel desert/salad.  I made two pies as Kris' mom likes it and I always want her to take some home.
 It really was such a nice afternoon visiting with the kids and Kris' mom, dad and her sister and their family.
The kid enjoy the pool so much and I did get lots of videos of them splashing and jumping...yep, fun for them!  And yes, that's Brody behind the post walking along the pool!  He's afraid of the water but gets quite excited when the kids splash and scream!




Just such a nice, beautiful day...especially being with family.  Jeff and Dawn were headed back from a short vacation to Boston to visit friends so I missed them but I'm anxious to hear about their trip!  Clam bake and more!

Now back to some sewing and artwork!






Saturday, July 4, 2015

Multiple Project Progress

Actually, I only have two projects to show updates on (solar piece isn't being worked on anymore, yet!).

First up is my Patchwork #2 piece.  Hand stitching is coming along nicely...but takes time....I'm still quite happy with the colorway and threads for stitching.  You can see the pattern I drew up here for stitching.








I machine stitched the straight lines for stability and now I'm also hand stitching those same lines to give it more definition.


I think this looks lots better with additional hand stitching.




Next project update is the hex rows.  Again, making progress!  I have to admit I do enjoy working on this piece.  So easy to pick up and stitch!  Once I get those last two columns sewn together, then I'll sew those 4 column sections together, yada, yada!  The the background will be finished (approximately 20" x 22"ish!).


So that's what I've been working on...well, some other smaller, quick projects as well but those will be blog post fill in!    Kids invited us to their house on Sunday for BBQ!  YUM!  Darrin and Kris are great cooks so we already know the food will be great!  Hope everyone has a safe and fun 4th weekend!


Thursday, July 2, 2015

Birthday time

Tuesday was our DIL's Birthday!  Happy Birthday, Kris!!!

 Since her birthday was on Tuesday, which is the same day I go to visit the grand kids, they asked me to join them in a BD dinner (OK, maybe I asked myself!).  I sure am glad I did!  My son took us to Kruse and Muer Roadhouse in Lake Orion for dinner.      And it was fantastic!!!

This is what Nick and I split for dinner!
I have to say this was the BEST cheese pizza I have had!  Nick likes pepperoni,on his pizza, which I will eat on occasion (JETs pizza only).  I had a bite of his and it was even excellent!!!  I know where I want to go for the next birthday dinner out!!
Kris and Darrin each had a seafood dish, which looked  wonderful and they said tasted excellent.  Amber had a special chicken dish she gets whenever they eat here.  I guess it's been almost a year since the kids ate here but I might even be tempted to order a pizza to go sometime!  If I don't have dinner there!
The kids were so excited to give Kris their gift.  They were shopping with her last weekend and Nick had to divert his mom so Amber could buy (they both contributed $$'s) a workout top for Kris that she liked.  Wasn't that sweet of the kids!!!
I just love those kids and the are so giving. We had a lot of fun before going to dinner...Kids and I bought a cake, which we went back to house to cut into after dinner.

 That was a job in itself...the cake buying.  Our favorite bakery in Oxford was closed for vaca so we had to resort to a chocolate mousse cake from Meijer, which wasn't all that bad!
All in all it was a great day with family.  Only missed my daughter and Jeff, who were both working as they were leaving for vaca on Wednesday heading to Boston to surprise a friend.

I've been switching my time at night sewing the hexes and my patchwork piece.  I'll post pics of my progress later this weekend.  Oh and check out Kalee's blog today.  It's here birthday!!!  She's four years old!!!  I won't say how old Kris is!  Just because I'm a nice MIL!  Right, Kris!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Weekly Pattern Wednesday #7

Weekly Pattern Wednesday #7
Ignore the date!  I goofed...what was I thinking...July 3rd!  No, it's July 1st!  Oh well....
 


OOPS!!!  Wrong date!!  



Linking to Lynn's Weekly Pattern Wednesday on her blog!  Check it out and tell her how much you missed her pattern from last week!  HE HE HE





Saturday, June 27, 2015

Playing Grandma

Nick spent a few days with grandma and grandpa....life is different with us, that's for sure!  I'm afraid I am a rules kinda grandma..."put things away when you're done with them", "no you can't eat all that sweet stuff.  I have fruit and sugar free jello, etc.", "now it's time for our walk", "brush your teeth", yada, yada!
But in between we did have some fun!  HA
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Nick brought his XBox which he hooked up quickly to show us some of the cars in his 'garage'!



He wouldn't do my 7 Minute exercise routine and instead opted to play soccer on the XBox.




Of course we have to play a game or two of pool!  He only beat me by 2 points!  Hey, last I played was in the fall!


Beside walking Kalee twice a day, each day...we also got to walk Dillon, my neighbors 3 legged dog.  He is so cute and really liked Nick a lot!!

After Dillon, we took Kalee and Logan, my neighbors Labradoodle for a mile walk.  He did so good.  I think we wore all the dogs out!





Thursday, we went  to see Jurassic World in Imax.  It was pretty cool...acting wasn't the greatest...wasn't bad just not great...with the exception of the two kids!  They were really good!!!  I think they out shined the adult actors.   I was quite impressed with them.  And the special effects were quite good, which is to be expected.  And the Imax experience is the only way to see this movie.  I only fell out of my seat once!

We are still debating about what to do until the time to take Nick home....so between "I don't know" or "I don't know" (both comments from Nick)...I don't know what we're doing!  HA

Friday, June 26, 2015

Project Progress!

I most likely won't have any more progress on my projects as Nick (grandson) will have spent a few days with grandma and grandpa!   Nick and I are planning to go see the movie Jurassic World, which I can't wait to see!  Bob isn't a movie goer!   And of course, dog walking, playing his X box (which I understand he is packing up to bring!) and eating...which we do a lot of!

Anyway, I did quilt the leaves on this solar piece.  I'm using a 12wt Sulky dark blue thread for the quilting.


My next plan is to hand stitch inside the 'box' area.  I'm not sure how I'll free motion quilt around the outside of the 'box' area....have to do some playing and planning I think!  Once quilted, it will be attached to a gallery wrap canvas.  I'm hoping to have the canvas painted in the shades of lime green, yellows and pinks, which are in the solar piece.  Another plan in my head that I need to put to action!!   I am requesting the assistance of my bud, Joan, who does paintings on canvas.  You can see a piece she painted that I made into a snap bag for her here.


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Weekly Pattern Wednesday #6

Weekly Pattern Wednesday #6
Guess I could have cropped out the background!  Oh well!!!   I do think I am done with the stamping and adding patterns/doodles!  Next week, back to something I can potentially use in my quilting.


 It is fun to play with the stamps but I like to stretch a little more!  Don't forget to head over to Lynn's blog to see what her pattern is for the week as well as all the other participates!  Always great inspiration!  And you can still join in!!!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Hex Horse #2 Progress

I'm working away on my hex background for my patchwork horse!  I have each hex 'column' sewn and started to sew the columns/rows together!

I think the patchwork horse (leftover from my Horse Hex#1 piece) will fit quite well.




Now the sewing begins!!!  I have made quite a bit of progress getting the rows/columns sewn together...well, it might not seem like a lot to you but it is to me!   These are 1" hex's and the background needs to be at least 18" x 21"...as the finished piece needs to be 16" x 18".


I sewed row 1 to row 2 and row 3 to row 4... I have now started sewing row 2 to row 3, you can see on the left side, which will give me four rows finished. I'm half way to sewing those four rows together.

I'll just continue sewing two rows together then sewing four together...whatever...like I know my readers don't care but I like to document my process since I forget from year to year!!   Honest, I do!

And to answer a question posed to me..."why or how do you work on so many different projects at once?"

Well, first off...I'm one of those folks who has every form of arthritis you can name...starting with RA (Rheumatoid) and of course osteoarthritis, yada, yada.....the old hands still work (they don't look pretty!!!)  but I try to alternate the type of stitching I'm doing.
One day I may hand stitch on my Patchwork #2 piece, which is a form of stab stitching...then a day or two later I might pick up my knitting needles....or I'll start stitching the hex's together.  Each of these types of hand work affects my joints differently...hence, I work on different projects at the same time!!  Some days, if my hands are really bad, I might just cut up some fabric to piece by machine or dye some fabric or look at art books for new ideas!  Gotta keep those hands busy!!!!  Hope that answers the question!!  I do finish my projects but you never know which one will get finished first!!!  It all depends on the hands!!!  HA

Friday, June 19, 2015

A doodle winner!

Yep...that was me a week ago!  June, from A Creative Dream, had one of her doodles published in the summer issue of Zen Doodle Workshop and gave away some prints of her piece!  And I won one!!!!

June does some really cool, interesting techniques in addition to doodles as she paints and creates!!  Be sure to check out her blog!   This is the print I won...and you can also see in it the Gallery section of the magazine.


Thanks, June!!!  I really like this piece!!!  She needs to participate in Lynn's Weekly Pattern Wednesday!!    What about that, June???

And as I was putting away some fabric earlier this week...I found some of my fabric I printed using Solar Fast....you can see some of the results here.   I think it pretty cool...I didn't at the time...but I do now!  Go figure!!!

Anyway, I'm thinking of quilting it with black thread and putting on canvas for our Master's Exhibit for the work of Rick Loudermilk.  I'll paint the canvas some of the same yellows/pinks/greens that are in the piece, for the  canvas background.    I played with some free motion quilting on a scrap piece of the fabric and the black stands out quite nicely.  So this is another project in my head...almost in my hands!!!
Well, you know I only have three projects in progress!!!  Let's make it an even four, right!!!  Idle hands are the devil's workshop...or something like that...at least that's what my aunt would always tell me as a little girl!!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Weekly Pattern Wednesday #5

Here's my Weekly  Pattern Wednesday #5.  

I was looking through my blog at some of the patterns I've doodled over the years and found  some cards I made (doodled)  for a BD gift for my daughter.  (You can see some of those patterns here, but you'll have to scroll down a bit!).  Anyway, I got looking back on those designs and thought combining some of those patterns would work for my Wednesday pattern for this week.   So that's how this lady came to be!  I had the face stamp, which I stamped then played around with some doodles!   Funny, my daughter took a  Zentangle class a few weeks ago so I gave her some of my tangle books.  I know she'll enjoy this form of doodling when she's in all those meetings...at least the meetings that she isn't hosting.


So here is the 1st pattern I made for this week!  A fun piece but I like using the stamp and adding to it.  I'll have to look at my stamps to see what I can use next!  Lynn's Weekly Pattern Wednesday is getting me back into the swing of doodling, which I love doing!

Monday, June 15, 2015

The Queen of Unsewing!



This is the design (on tracing paper) I made for my patchwork #2 piece.  I was so excited to start the hand stitching this weekend, got out my threads...orange and dark blue, needle ready....but a lady came to visit me!  The Queen of Unsewing!!!


Yep, that's me!   I  settled in to watch season 3 of 'Orange is the New Black', and got carried away with hand stitching!  In the first picture below I started stitching each circle with dark blue thread and finished outlining all four circles!

Then I started stitching the inner circles...still using my blue thread, still watching my series and finished about 3/4 of an entire circle, hung the piece up on my board and started dinner.

When I got back in the room after dinner, I looked at the piece and thought...ugh....the dark blue fades right out on the blue fabric!  See the small blue patch with the 'blue' thread outlining.  Doesn't really stand out....Well, duh!!! So...what to do but 'unsew'...and there was a lot of unsewing to do!!!












The white lines are the white pencil I use to mark the arches.  I was removing all the lines I had stitched...you can see some of the blue not removed at the top right corner.



You can really see in this picture at the bottom right how the blue fades on the blue but how nice the contrast is on the orange.



This is the back to show some of the stitches removed...this is just one part of a circle!   Good TV work!!  NOT!!!  It's really called a waste of time...not thinking ahead!  











And this is what it looks like now!  So much better....now the "Queen" will get busy sewing.....let's hope 'she' can retire....but I honestly think she will be around for a long time!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

A Little Dyeing Time

Back in 2012, I took an online Mandala class by Shibori Girl (aka Glennis).  The class was great and I  produced some cool pieces (you can see some here).  So my blog/bud, Kay S. from Quilts + Color created some stunning mandala pieces the past few months, which inspired me to give it a go again.  You have to check out her mandala ice dyes..NO, wait...wait until after you've seen mine or else you won't even come back to look at what I've done here!  Kay's pieces are stunners!!!!

My pieces aren't the greatest but it was fun to fold fabric and see how it turns out..oh a note on the dye I used on this piece!  It has been in the downstairs frig for five years!  Yes, five years and it was still perfectly fine to dye with!!  On another note, I do not put soda ash/fixer in my dyes...I do soak my fabric in fixer but do not add to my dye solution.




It was really hot this past weekend therefore very easy to let the pieces batch in the sun!



This is a yard of cotton sateen fabric that was fold based on Glennis' method.


This is an 18" square of some cheap cotton but it dyed up quite well.  I do have a project in mind for this piece.















I also dyed a yard of cotton sateen I had rusted a few years ago for a background to put my beaded leaf on.     I used both green and blue dyes and laid the fabric in a tray, pouring dyes over the folds.
It's a pretty piece and I like the way the rust shows through the dyes.
 But it came out a little too dark for what I wanted but I have some ideas to  perhaps lighten it....then I'll overdye with some pale green or light blue.  This is what I was trying to achieve!

It's actually fabric from a blouse  my friend saw in Chico's!  She called me over to look at it and the colors are really perfect for my leaf...although, I decided I'm going to need to bead two smaller leaves. One big leaf just won't look right alone...but we'll see what happens.

I'm thinking if I brush my dyed piece with bleach I should be able to lighten up the piece to allow the rust show though and remove some of the darkness. Can't hurt to try!!!  Besides...what else am I doing!

Saturday, June 13, 2015

This and that!

I made some fiber cards for my Florida friends...now I just hope they receive them!   The red and green is some  fabric I dyed many years ago using bubble wrap.   I free motion quilted and added some pen strokes on some of the quilting motifs.  The first one is just for a friend to say hello.



The next two are for friends for their upcoming Birthday's!


As to my statement I hope they get them....for a friends birthday in Ocala this past winter, it took 10 days for one of my friends to receive her card and she only lived two streets over from our house in Florida!

 Then in April I sent two more cards...one to Michigan and one to Indiana and it took over 5 weeks!  5 weeks!!!!!  That's just ridiculous!!  And I always take the cards to have them weighed and hand stamped.  Yes, this upsets me because I have never had a problem mailing from Michigan (other than once and that was my fault for wrong zip code).

So I make sure I document for now on when I make cards and when I mail them.  Just so my friends don't think I forgot them!! Geezzzz   Yes, my rant is now over....thank you for listening!



Thursday, June 11, 2015

Patchwork #2 progress

I drew out a partial quilting design today for my patchwork piece (thanks Susan for the large tracing paper!).  I didn't have any with me in Florida so Susan gave me some pieces...I didn't think to leave the paper in Florida so I brought it home with me...but I digress....here is the design I traced out.



Here it's overlaid on top of my patchwork piece.  I'm liking it well enough so I used some Transdoddle tracing paper to transfer the circles and lines to the patchwork.


  Beth (from Quilter Beth's Blog) suggested I might use light blue or even yellow thread for my hand stitching!!  Who knew!!!  I did try the light blue but didn't like it...here I just laid the yellow along with the dark blue...but I'm thinking the yellow might be a perfect accent for using in some hand stitching!!  Thanks, Beth!!!
When I did the hand stitching on my Hex Horse #1, I used orange thread in just a few of the stitching lines (red and blue were my primary threads).  You can see just two of the orange threads in this picture, in one of the corners.   So who knows...the yellow might be a perfect accent or addition to stitching with just blue thread!!

I've already machine stitched the straight lines from each circle, which you can see in this picture.  I was curious as to how the dark blue thread would look and didn't want to wait to hand stitch...plus, it just secures the patchwork a tad more (I've already stitched in the ditch in several areas).  The dark blue thread  almost looks black in this picture but it really is dark blue.
So another good traveling project...that is, it travels from the sewing room to the living room at night!  I don't plan on starting the hand stitching yet..I like to let work sit and then look at it again.  I've been known to rip out stitches so the machine work could still come out!  You never know do you!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Weekly Pattern Wednesday #4

Weekly Pattern Wednesday #4





This is mindless fun but really gets you thinking about different designs, colors and patterns!!! Oh the possibilities!  

Stop over to Lynn's blog and check out her 'weekly' creation!