Monday, September 30, 2013

It's Bleeding!

Call a Doctor! My quilt is bleeding! - Little Pink Dress Quilt
Little Pink Dress Quilt

With my quilt all finished and the Utah Quilt Fest Quilt Show just weeks away, it was time to block it. I sprayed down the quilt with water...and you can see what happened.

You would think I had learned this lesson before as this happened to my first quilt. With my first quilt, I was very careful to pre-treat all my fabric before piecing. But then I took it to a longarmer, and together we chose a beautiful blue batik for the backing...which WASN'T pre-washed. The blue bled into all my white pieces. I was in tears! My mom (who is my quilt mentor) was at Paducah at the time, so I couldn't get a hold of her for a while. Mom talked me off the ledge and made me see all was not lost. She taught me about what to do when your quilt bleeds. Don't you love moms? 

When the pink in my mini quilt bled, I didn't panic. (Ok, who am I kidding--I may have panicked slightly, but I didn't cry.) I grabbed my synthrapol and color catchers. I felt a little like a mad scientist as I stirred my quilt over the stove in hot soapy water.  My kids asked what I was making, hoping I was making a treat. Nope, just cooking fabric over here. - Little Pink Dress Quilt
Cooking my Quilt

I used four color catchers. FOUR! - Little Pink Dress Quilt
Color Catches
After stirring and rinsing, the color seemed to have disappeared from the grey. 
I pulled it out and set it out on a towel and blocked it. My friend who is charge of the Quilt Show suggested putting a fan on the quilt to dry it as soon as possible. This reduces the chances of curling and crinkling, etc. - Little Pink Dress Quilt
Little Pink Dress Quilt

Then I waited. Only 24 hours later, my quilt is dry. Best yet--my grey is looking grey and my pink is looking pink. No bleeding! - Little Pink Dress Quilt
Little Pink Dress Quilt

So, BIG sigh of relief. Crisis averted. Everyone can go about their lives--it's okay.
What crisis has had you in tears? Who saved you?

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Getting Chilly

The weather is changing. I'm still not really ready for Autumn, but it is definitely upon us.  It has been raining a lot, but it didn't turn chilly until yesterday.

I went to bed before R last night.  I've been sick this past week, nothing horrendous--just a cold that just won't go away and is sapping all my energy. Of course, it happens the week I have to actually work everyday. So goes life.  Anyways, I woke this morning with an extra quilt on top of me.

(Mrs. Bobbins comic can be found here.)

I wasn't a blanket hog! He had put a quilt over himself as well. When he came to bed last night, he saw I was asleep in a ball trying to stay warm. He put a quilt over us to keep us warm.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

How I know S Truly is My Son

While watching TV together, a shoe commercial aired advertising shoes for $39.95. Without missing a beat he turns to me and says:

S: $39.95? That's like it is $40.00, which means each shoe costs $20.00.
Me: Yes, S. You're right.
*secretly thinking it was the exact thing I would have calculated as a kid.*

Friday, September 20, 2013

FMQ Friday #3 - Learning Spirals

I've been wanting to learn how to FMQ Spirals. Ultimately, I want to quilt part of my baby boy boat quilt with spirals around the sails to look like wind. But I have to learn how to do it before I can attempt to quilt it on my finished top. 

So, first step was to doodle it. I then tried quilting it, but wasn't happy with the results. I consulted the instructional video here

This is what I got: - Learning Spirals
1st Attempt at Spirals
It's hard to reconcile the results with the image I have in my head. I just have to keep reminding myself that I'm just beginning. 


With that in mind, I found a great tutorial that really has made a difference for me. 
SewCalGal has a Free Motion Quilting Challenge I stumbled upon thanks to Pinterest. She has one specifically for learning how to do spirals with printouts to practice on. I love this!

She advocates learning to do swirls in a row to learn the motion and general concept. It helped me a lot.

I printed out her practice sheets where I can trace the shape and then try on my own. - Learning Spirals
Learning Spirals
 I'd take it with me to doodle on while I waited for the kids at school pick-up or to doodle on while chatting with my sister on the phone, etc. 

I finally decided I needed to try with needle and thread. I was anxious to give it a go.
I drew grid lines onto fabric to mimic the paper I practiced on. - Learning Spirals
Learning Spirals

Here is my first test with this method. - Learning Spirals
Learning Spirals
I have to say, I like this second organized attempt better than my first willy-nilly attempt. It was easy to see what I need to work on and focus on. 

I'm going to practice a lot more before I make any attempts on my finished pieced quilt top. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Here's My Sign

Oh, I was so tempted to buy this sign I found at Joann's. - Funny Signs
But really--I have no where to hang it. Scratch that--I just don't hang things on my walls. Lots of bare, plain walls in my house. I'm the WORST interior decorator of all time.

I settled for a picture of MK holding it.
It still makes me laugh because she has NO idea what it says.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

WIP Wednesday #20

I haven't been able to do much sewing this week. I've actually had to go do that pesky thing called "work."  Last night, after the kidlets went to bed, I managed to finish up all my blocks for my fractured flower quilt - Fractured Flower Quilt
Fractured Flower Quilt
They are just waiting to be ironed. Have I mentioned I hate ironing seams open? Yes, I believe I have.
Once I press the seams open, I can then start to sew my rows. 

I'm glad I put this quilt in "Time Out" because I can revisit it now that I'm no longer mad at it. I'm actually happy to work on this quilt now instead of dreading it. 

Monday, September 16, 2013

A Quiet Festival

A business contact of my husband's came over this evening to meet with us. While he and my husband were waiting in the dinning area for me, he noticed a Utah Quilt Festival poster I had left out from our committee meeting today. He looked at that and said: "A Quiet Festival? No, wait! That say's Quilt. Wow. I was wondering what type of festival that would be where everyone played the quite game or something."

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Email Conversation with My Mom

Context: My maternal grandmother passed away shortly after I arrived in Paris, France at the start my LDS Mission. I did see her before I left, but I wasn't able to return Stateside for her funeral. My mother and her siblings all gathered for the funeral. When they started to disperse her things among each other, they noticed several items had a note attached to the back which read, "This is Mary's when I'm done with it." There are five children, and it was only my aunt Mary's name on things! They all had a good laugh about it, as if Mary really would try to take these things from her own mother. To this day, Mary is still perplexed as to why grandma did this.

This week, I had the following email conversation with my mom:

Mom to me: Did I loan you my French Braid quilt books?  I can't find them and can't remember who I loaned them to.

Mom to me: *second email sent 15 minutes after the first* Found my books!  Sorry. 

Me to Mom: Is this when you start labeling everything thing "This is Allison's when I'm done with it?" *grin* Glad you found it!

Mom to me: Smart Alec.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Finished Mini Quilt

Finished! - Modern Lonestar Mini Quilt
Modern Lonestar Mini Quilt

Despite my difficulties quilting and my battle skirmish with the binding, I've finally completed this "easy", one block mini quilt.  I'm donating this mini quilt to the mini quilt fundraiser at the Utah Quilt Fest next month. - Modern Lonestar Mini Quilt
Modern Lonestar Mini Quilt

On the back, I sewed on corner hangers on two corners instead of a traditional hanging sleeve. Easier to do and super quick. I figured with it being such a small wall hanging, these would be easier to use. - Modern Lonestar Mini Quilt
Modern Lonestar Mini Quilt

Overall, I'm happy with the results. I sure learned a LOT for such a small quilt. 
(Even if most my lessons were what NOT to do. *grin*) - Modern Lonestar Mini Quilt
Modern Lonestar Mini Quilt

Showing off my finished project at the Link Parties on TGIFF here and Richard and Tanya Quilts here

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Conversation at the Dinner Table

The other night, I made breakfast for dinner. My kids LOVE it when we do pancakes or waffles for dinner. Well, I pulled everyone to the table before I was finished making the pancakes. We were eating as I'm still pulling stacks off the hot grill. I finally sat down myself to eat a hot-off-the-grill pancake when they were all mostly done.

Me: *Just about to cut my pancake* How'd they turn out, you guys?
S: *makes yummy sounds*
C: Great!
MK: Well, they're not poisoned.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

WIP Wednesday #19 - Out of 'Time Out'

Look what came out of "Time Out!" -- Fractured Flowers Quilt, 2 color Quilts, Modern Quilts
Fractured Flower Quilt Top In Progress

Do you ever put projects in "Time Out?"

My Fractured Flower quilt was just making me angry, so it spent the past four months in a "Time Out" bag

I gave myself permission to work on other things while I waited for the anger to dissipate. I finally took it out of "Time Out" this week. (And no, I don't put my children in "time out" for this long. I promise.)

I've spent a few hours working on it. It's easier to do when I'm not mad at it. Imagine that!

I did come upon a little snafu. - Fractured Flowers Quilt
Fractured Flowers Quilt

Oops, I cut one square piece the wrong direction. The top piece shows how it is SUPPOSED to look. You can see by the bottom piece that it just won't work with the direction I cut the square. Luckily, it is only 2 pieces I have to resew and I have enough leftover fabric to do this. Phew! I'm so glad I bought out the quilt store of that grey fabric. Can you imagine the agony I'd be in if I hadn't? 

Have you ever put projects in "Time Out" as well? 

Linked up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced here
Linked up to Show Off Saturday here.
Linked up to Stitch by Stitch here.

*Update: Several people have asked about the pattern. I wish I could claim it as my own, but sadly I can't. Currently, the pattern info can be found on my WIP page as with all my projects.  The pattern can be found at Happy Stash Quilts here.

**Update 8/1/15--See completed quilt top here.


Monday, September 9, 2013

Sticker Love

MK when she came home from school. - Silly Kids

On Thursday, MK had some spider bites on her arm that caused her arm to swell...pretty badly. I gave her benedryl, but the swelling got worse and started to hurt. So, Friday morning I took her to see the doctor. He prescribed medicine to help clear up the infection, and she's all better. 

MK was DEVASTATED about missing Kindergarten that day. She was visibly upset during her doctor visit that I had to explain she wasn't sad about the spider bite but sad about missing school. The nurse gave MK 3 stickers at the end of the visit. She put two on her shirt and one on her arm. The one are her arm fell off eventually. The other two have since been moved from shirt to shirt everyday since, including her pajama shirts. Today, she went to school with two big stickers on the front of her shirt. Then she came home with MORE stickers she got from her kindergarten teacher on her arm. 

Friday, September 6, 2013

It's Done!

Look what I did today! - Little Pink Dress Quilt
Little Pink Dress Quilt

I finished it! Hurray!

Here's a close up of the quilting and the dress. - Little Pink Dress Quilt
Little Pink Dress Quilt

This pattern is actually an Iris Folding Paper pattern I just adapted to use with fabric. The pattern can be found here. She has many other fun patterns for free. 

Linked up to Quiet Play here.
Linked up to the TGIFF Project hosted at Quokkaquilts here
Linked up to Show Off Saturday Link party at SewCanShe here.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

WIP Wednesday #18 - Scalloped Boarder

I've never done a scalloped border before. I thought my pink dress mini quilt needed a little more oomph, so I'm trying out a scalloped border. I've read books; I've attended lectures; I've watched tutorials. So I thought it was now or never.

First, I had to figure out the scalloped edging I wanted. 
I grabbed some ice cream bowls...but the circles were just too big for such a small quilt. - Scalloped Border

Next, I tried some of my kids plastic IKEA cups. Again, too big. - Scalloped Border
I stood there in my kitchen trying to find something smaller.
Then, I spotted the lid to some vitamins. This is what I wanted.
Now I realize this isn't EXACTLY scalloped, but it is decorative. And to me THAT is new. - Scalloped Border
I traced it onto my quilt to mark my edging. - Scalloped Border

I pinned it in place with a TON of pins in the corners to keep it flat and in place. - Scalloped Border

Luckily, I didn't have the same binding nightmares over this project as my last one. I only messed up closing the binding once as opposed to my 2-day battle with my other mini quilt. - Scalloped Border
Once I had my binding all in place, I cut off the excess.
This is where I'm at. - Scalloped Border
My next task is to hand sew the binding to the back and then I will be finished.
Just in time, too. The Utah Quilt Guild's Annual Quilt Fest is fast approaching. I need to have it completed, forms filled out, fees paid, etc. in about 2 weeks. Phew!

Linked up with Freshly Pieced here.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Birthday Hike

It's my birthday today. I know what you are all thinking, and it's true--Everyone got the day off from work and school today to celebrate with me. You are welcome. 

The boys woke me up for breakfast in bed. They made me oatmeal, a small bowl of blueberries and yogurt, and toast with garlic butter. Yup--garlic butter with my breakfast because they know how much I love garlic. I had to cover up my smile of that one. It was sweet of them to think of things that I love. 

I wanted to do something with the family for my birthday, so we went on another hike. I figured if the kids could handle the hike to Timpanogos Cave last week, than a hike to Stewart Falls would be a breeze.  The funny thing about that assumption is that today's hike was just as long than our other hike and we did about the same in elevation over the duration of the hike. R and I have fitbits we use to keep track of our physical activity. When we hiked Timpanogos Cave, it said we did 110 flights of stairs. WOW! Today, at the end of our hike to Stewart Falls it said we had done 91 flights of stairs.

Midway through the hike we took this group selfie. - Family, Hike Utah

C, S, and MK along the trail. - Family, Hike Utah

S, C, and MK after a break. - Family, Hike Utah
S and C looking out at the views. - Family, Hike Utah

S in the waterfall. He was SO cold after this. - Family, Hike Utah
Stuart Falls

C in front of the fall. - Family, Hike Utah
Stuart Falls

The boys and I hiked up the falls. MK and R did it earlier. - Family, Hike Utah
Stuart Falls

S, C, and Me up at top of the falls. - Family, Hike Utah
Stuart Falls

And because we can't ever be serious... - Family, Hike Utah
Stuart Falls

I really like this one of S. - Family, Hike Utah

S, MK, C, and R just before we headed back. - Family, Hike Utah
Stuart Falls
We hiked back to our car and ran into one of my very good friends and her family along the trail. It was so random! 

After the hike, we came back home and everyone cleaned up in record time so we could go out and eat.

It was a great day!

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