Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Sunday, October 28, 2012

The Accidental Quilt

When I got up this morning, I did not intend to make a quilt today.  I had some housecleaning to do, some "battening down" of the hatches in case Sandy gets too rambunctious in the next few days, and lots and lots of laundry.

I didn't even intend to make a quilt when I went upstairs this afternoon after dropping the Munchkin off at a birthday party.  I figured while he was gone I would take some time to straighten, and resort my Christmas present stash, and get my studio ready for a couple of commissioned projects that I am just waiting on supplies for...

And then, while straightening the DVDs and VHS tapes under the TV,  I stumbled upon a remnant of fabric...  a modern black fabric with multi-colored bars and stripes.  A remnant that I have no idea where I got, and no idea how it got stuck under with the videos and DVDs.

And then I started cutting.  And matching fabrics from my stash.  And sewing.  And before I went to pick up the Munchkin, I had 35 finished blocks ready to be assembled.

And by 10pm - after dinner and snuggling with a very tired boy with a tummy ache - and more laundry .. I ended up with this:

The colors don't show up well here - nighttime quilt photos just never seem to show up well.  The dark blocks are a chocolate pin dot, the light are a peach on cream mottled fabric, and the outer border is kind of a peachy cream with large creamy white dots.  The dark center blocks are kind of a black-grey printed with bands of various colors.. teal, orange, lime, brown, rust, gold, and even pink.

I am not sure how I am going to finish this one - or what I am going to do with it - but for now my Accidental Quilt is going in my pile of flimsies.  Not bad for a rainy dreary afternoon.  The cleaning can wait for another day.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

4Patches4Hope - update

I've finished up 2 more quilts for 4Patches4Hope, and they are going out in today's mail to be shipped to SC - along with some other goodies for family down there.  Terri is visiting both the chemo and radiation centers on Wednesday and offered to do a delivery - which was the push I needed to get some flimsies buttoned up.

Neither is a 4 patch - but these were made from donated fabric and I picked a block that is fun but works up very quickly.  The 2nd one was actually because I miscounted when I was cutting, and ended up with too many for the first quilt.  Munchkin helped me lay them out on point - he's got a good eye for that even without setting triangles to finish the layout (I hadn't cut them yet).  A bit of straight line quilting and these were done.  I still like to hand finish my bindings - it takes a bit of time but it just feels right to me to do it that way... like I put the last little bit of me into the quilt at that point.


Monday, October 08, 2012

Don't Let Them Scare You...

For years I have been intimidated by something in my back yard - our BIG black walnut tree.  I've dealt with it's juglone making my plants not grow, I've cleaned up the walnuts choking my mower and turning my ankles, and I have enjoyed it's shade.

But I have never quite gotten up the gumption to process those walnuts and actually eat them.

"It's tough work," they said.
"It's really dirty and will stain everything," they said.
"You will need to run over them with your car to get into them," they said.

("they" being friends, blogs, books, websites, etc...)

Well - last spring I made a promise to my nephew.  We were sitting under the tree in June and observing the squirrels and birds, and numerous nuts hanging from every branch.

"What do they taste like?" he asked me.
 Well, I, uh, I, uh.... "I don't know," I had to answer.

Me - the raspberry harvesting, potato growing, rhubarb raising, flower cultivating Aunt... I didn't know -and they were RIGHT THERE!!!

For 10 years -they have been RIGHT THERE!

So I promised him I would process some and bring them to his house for Thanskgiving.

So today, that is what I did.  I dove into the pile of nuts that the Munchkin has been picking up each weekend (he gets paid by the bucket -Friday we picked up 25.5 buckets... plus 23.5 in our neighbors yard...)

I didn't need the car - my hands worked just fine!
I didn't get all dirty - gloves took care of 90 % of it.
I DID get tired - but that was from sitting and leaning forward in a chair designed to be reclined in.

And now I have 5 gallons of nuts drying in my side yard - hopefully protected from the squirrels.  They will be moved to the basement later today - and hulled in a few weeks.
Will I do it again?  Depends on how they taste.  But now I know that it is not so scary!