Monday, June 24, 2024

Happy June !

Hello!  Popping in finally for  a post.   First up:  UFO update:

After spending a lot of time making these flying geese - I don't like it as a border.  I feel it detracts from my Scrappy Stars.  Still a UFO at this stage. 
Yay!  Nutmeg is done!
I am continuing to hand quilt Jill's Quilt.
I went to Arizona with my Best Girlfriends.  I'm so lucky to have these women in my life for some 45-50 years. We had a side trip to Sedona.  It was incredible.
On the way from Phoenix I saw so many saguaro cactus.  
We visited the Phoenix Art Museum.   They had a great exhibit on Barbie!
It was so fun to see all these vintage dolls and accessories.
I potted lots of flowers
I received this new planter for my Birthday.  I love it.
So I had a funny Birthday this year.  I was born on 6/2/62 and I turned 62.  Rich and I hosted a little dinner out with our best CT friends.
My friend, Wendy Reed, send me a half-size version of my Scrap Happy Quilt.
Isn't it the sweetest thing you've ever seen??  She used the directions in Quilt Mania and cut them by half.  Wendy even added hand quilting!  What a special friend.
I am continuing to work on Jane Stickle Sampler blocks.  I've quilted and  put red binding on several.
  Here are three new ones.
I got together with Scarlett to make zippered pouches.  Aren't they cute?  I still have one to finish.
I have a new finished (not originally planned) quilt top.   The blocks are 10".
It was an unusual color scheme and a bit challenging.  I was inspired in part by the decore in our VRBO in Sedona.
I'll end this post sharing this sweet flower stand I saw on my early morning walk.
Such a sweet display and the bouquets were priced at $2.00 and $3.00.  I bought 5 and took to them to a sew day and gave them to friends.  It was so old timey and charming.

Happy June!
xo

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Moon Shadow

I did it!  I witnessed Totality of the 2024 Solar Eclipse.
I didn't have a special filter so the photos are so so.

I know that some of you saw my IG story and wondered, what the heck?  I had a old friend message me and ask if I was expecting a severe weather event.  Another person texted my daughter and asked if I was okay.  

Here is the story:

I had reserved 2 hotel rooms in Lancaster, NH for Sunday and Monday at a cost of around $3,000.  As the time drew near my family was on the fence about going.  What if it rained, what if the traffic is horrific, what if....?    So I cancelled the rooms.  Later the same rooms were being offered for  $2,500 a night!

Around 4am on Sunday, I woke up and couldn't fall back asleep.  I listened to a NPR podcast story about an eclipse chaser.  After hearing his account of witnessing totality I decided I had to try and get there.

I studied the maps of the eclipse and decided to head to Burlington, VT.  I know the area because of the Vermont Quilt Festival.   I found an event at the Burlington Airport and actually bought a $100. ticket.  It guaranteed that I would have parking, a shuttle to the airfield where there would be food trucks, bands, drinks and facilities.

After further consideration, I decided it would be difficult to get out of the parking garage with everyone else, and did I really want to share the event with day drinkers and kids (who were free?)......hhhmmmm.   So it was an insurance ticket.

I set my sights on the Lowe's parking lot in South Burlington.  It was large and set back from Rt. 7 and there was even a burger King I could walk to.  Okay!

So I printed the directions (in case of cel interruption) and packed the car.
My intention was to be completely self sufficient; and I do mean completely.
Food, water, applique, cash, lawn chair, 2 quilts, pillow, chaise cusion, magazines, etc, etc.
The ride up was uneventful and I made good time.  There was still snow in Vermont.
A short video on my way.

I thought about going to to the Middlebury area, but the totality would only last 1 minute and 37 seconds.

  I would have over 3 minutes of totality in South Burlington.


Yay!  I have arrived and there is a large clean bathroom. The parking lot was good, but there was a frontage road on the other side of those trees.
I walked over to the Burger King and had a hot lunch.
I moved over a frontage road and joined about 8 other cars.
 
I met people from Massachusettes, Deleware and even Brussels.  One man brought a telescope with a special filter and let us all take turns looking through it.

 I had planned to take a nap, but the long slow show of the eclipse had begun.
Here we go.

The moment of totality is so sudden and complete that it takes you quite by surprise when you're looking through the glasses.  Then you lower them and try to take it all in.
Street lights are on and it's pretty eeeerie.
The moment of totality is so sudden and complete that it takes you quite by surprise when you're looking through the glasses.  Then you lower them and try to take it all in.

Now let me say:  I know that I sound like a total wackadoo.  It is hard to describe why so many people, including professional newsmen, cry during an eclipse.  So I am in good company.
I am slightly more composed in this next video.  We were near enough to Burlington to hear crowds of people cheering.   Our little group were all dabbing our eyes as we said our farewells.  What a life affirming event to share with like minded strangers. 
Our little group were all dabbing our eyes as we said our farewells.  What a life affirming event to share with like minded strangers. 

I left the area within about 5 minutes of the end of totality and it took me over 7 hours to get home.  There were cars as far as the eye could see.  There were so many cars, in fact, that peopled lined the overpasses to watch us.
It was a great migration.

I am very grateful I had this unique experience.  Tuesday I spent the day mostly like Nutmeg.
No matter where you were, I hope you had a great eclipse experience too!
xo

Thursday, March 14, 2024

It IS Pie!

Happy Pie Day!  (3.14)  I'm sharing my quilt which is just back from QuiltCon.  It was a thrill to be part of the show in Raleigh.

Here is a close up of the quilting.  I used alternating lime green thread and rainbow.
Thank you to everyone who sent me a nice comment or a photos of my quilt.  It was great to see it on IG and get some new followers.

Hooray!  I finished another UFO.  It is an outreach quilt for Habitat for  Humanity.
Sorry, it is upside down, here is a closer look.  It is a cute print with Santa cowboys.  Why Santa?  dunno.
I machine stitched the binding down from the front using this blanket stitch and I really like it!  Good for a quilt that might get tugged and washed a lot.
I practiced my free-motion quilting, which is not great.  Not bad, but not good either.

Here are my Jane Stickle blocks.  Not a UFO but hey, I get to do one thing not on the list right?
I've decided on this red for the bindings on my potholder style quilt.  I'll be machine quilting it with silk thread.    I'm only making 100 blocks (ha ha - only)

I haven't been quilting on Jill's quilt nearly enough and must recommit.
I had a nice visit with the Hudson Highland Quilters. 
We had a day of building houses without patterns.  What a treat to have pizza dinner and a catered lunch with this group.
Don't forget to treat yourself to a Shamrock Shake!  I had one while running errands and it was such a good naughty treat.
Have a great Pie Day!!
See you in April.
xo
barb

Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Happy February!

Punxsutawney Phil says that spring is on its way!   Actually we haven't had much of a winter if I'm honest.

This wasn't on my UFO list, but I did finish these pretty ornaments in time for  Valentines Day.

I also finished this little dolly quilt while on my first January retreat.
Do you like a flat quilt?
Or a washed and crinkly quilt?  I like this one :)
I finished the baby quilt and I'm just waiting for the baby information so I can make a cute label.
I used this sweet Paris print to set the swap blocks.
I tried this "Green Batting" from Quilters Dream and I liked it, especially after I washed the quilt.  
I used a Paris Black and White print on the back.  My friend, Norma, gave it to me and it is perfect!
I went on a second retreat in January and it was a great retreat center with nice big sewing stations.
We each had our own little dorm room.  I brought 2 quilts because it was a really cold weekend!
Well some of you may have noticed on Instagram, I joined a group to work on Jane Stickle blocks.  Jane Stickle of Bennington VT is the original maker/designer.

I started with a modern bright color palette, but its not working for me.  
I have decided to, with the support of my great friend, Wendy Reed to make this quilt potholder style.  I'll let you know what my color theme will be soon.

On the wild side, just today I saw this beautiful hawk land in my tree.  He was flying with another hawk but she kept going.
I saw this lovely doe having a little breakfast last week.
I hope you had a nice peaceful January and I wish a happy February!
xo