Thursday, April 28, 2016

A Very Birdy Post

Last Friday I started a new quilt!  This is the center and is 30 inches square.  The background is a piece of muslin that I tea dyed.
Here it is pinned to my design wall.
This will be the center of a medallion style quilt with various styles and techniques.  All the pieces are leftovers except the pot.  The tiny berries are 20 years old!

Working Titles include but are not limited to:
No Berry Left Behind
Cast offs and Rejects
Also Rans
This and That

Mr. Fun and I pulled the piece off the design wall without losing a single pin.  I've decided to machine baste the pieces for needle turn applique'.

I tried several things, but a long straight stitch for the stems and a wide zigzag for the leaves seems to be working the best.
It will be such a pleasure to have everything basted so I can sit and stitch.  The super skinny (thanks Susan) stems required slow stitching.
OMG look at the disaster of my sewing room!
There wasn't a clean surface anywhere!  I did, however, hang my lollipop garden quilt this week for spring.
 Goodness!  Designing a quilt is messy messy messy.
One bright spot - I organized the lights and shirtings.  Now about half of my fabric has been reviewed and restacked.
I'm excited to plant morning glories this year.  It has been a few years without them.   They get a better start if you soak the seeds  first.
Big News on the Bird front.    I think the Bluebirds have a family!
Here is the hard working mom loading up her beak before flying off.
They are working together to break up the mealworms to carry away.  Here is the proud Dad.
I'm a little bummed because I don't know where they are nesting.  They fly around the house to the woods.  With the cold snap they are feeding A LOT.   I ordered the food on Amazon.  It looks like this and I put them in a cereal shaker.  I actually think they have a nice earthy odor - not bad at all.
Here is a photo of a pretty Goldfinch.   The boys are really showing off their bright yellow color for the ladies.  He has a lovely song too.
And here is a female Red Bellied Woodpecker.
Mr. Cardinal would not cooperate with me.  He kept hiding on the wrong side of the feeder the little stinker.
I just love Pansies.  They are my favorite spring flower.  
 Here is 'you know who' to see what I'm doing outside in my PJs.
I'm going to the Northern Star Quilt Show on Sunday.  I'll share some photos next week.
Well that's all folks.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Westering Women

Happy Friday!  Yesterday Susan came for lunch and sewing and brought her finished Alice Payne top.  It is such a fun fresh pallet.

Well, I knew it was coming, a block in the WW sewalong that would be a challenge.

The Sweet Gum Leaf.  Here is the one from Barbara's post:
And Mine:
Here is how I made mine with HST and 9".
I opened this bottom seam and inserted the stem before appliqueing it.
Here is my friend Kathy's~
And Sheila's with her cute dog Paddy~
Here is a photo of the Eastern Bluebird.  They are very shy.
With my recent success with the Bluebird, I've decided to try for Baltimore Orioles which are a beautiful.  Greedy - I know - but wish me luck.
Aaahhh, that's better.  Last Friday started the outdoor quilting season.  It was fabulous.
Happy Friday I'm hoping to spend the day in the sewing room.  I need to get back in the sewing swing!


Monday, April 18, 2016

Howdy Ya'll!

I'm home, but a part of my heart is still in Texas.   Seldom have a I fell for a place like I did last week.  It reminded me of my girlhood in rural Illinois.

Bluebonnets!  A whole field of them.
Feathered Star Quilt Shop in Clyde.  Owner, Shaula, has the cutest things and her displays are so charming!  We had such a fun time.
 I love this old timey post box piece.
Thank you to the ladies of the Abilene Quilt Guild for their warm welcome.  Good luck at your upcoming quilt show.

A great workshop with the nice ladies of the Midland Quilt Guild.  Look at the cute houses they built.
They had a wonderful BBQ lunch.  What a treat! with homade food and Texas Pecan Squares - swoon.
I was treated (see what I did there) to a Chocolate Factory visit at Susie's South 40.  This is the world's biggest cookie cutter.  Susie started in her kitchen and now she has a whole factory and ships anywhere.
This is the only time I've been first on a visitors peg board.  That's me near New Haven :)
I pigged out (hehe) at KDs Authentic Bar-B-Q.
A visit to the Petroleum Museum.  It was incredible!
I received a few sweet gifts and shopped everywhere we went.
Wee!  I found great postcards, a pressed penny and even a floaty pen.  Yahoo!
My favorite thing?  The Pump Jack!  I just loved watching them.
I think you can see why I was smitten.  Thanks Texas!

Saturday, April 9, 2016


Thank you to all who entered to win Diane's Book "Scrap Quilt Secrets" or my Fan Stencil.   It was great fun to read your comments.  I hope you continue to visit Fun With Barb.

Winner #1 for the Book

Winner #2 for the Stencil

Please comment here or email me at so I can get your shipping addresses.

Thank you, Diane, for including me in your blog hop.  Your Basket Doll quilt is ready for the postman too.

If you missed out on the drawing, Diane's book can be found here at Amazon and my stencil here in my Etsy Store.

Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Cake and Quilts Sturbridge Village

I love cake and last week while my son, Andrew, was visiting he requested The Bubble Room Orange Crunch Cake.   Do yourself a favor and click the link to their website.  You will see right away why I like the place!
(recipe on bottom of post)

Despite the snow, ice and wind the New England Regional Chapter met at Sturbridge Village for an  American Quilt Study Group day.  Wow, that was a lot of links, but I'd like to encourage you to join this National organization.
From the Sturbridge collection, made by: Susannah Howard 1879.
My heart stopped when I saw this Pride of Iowa 4-block.  Sorry for the bad iphone photo - I was having a mild heart attack.
Wow - these berries were nearly round but securely attached.  I need to step up my game!
My favorite room
What a sweet little doll bed and paper doll set.
It was great to see the group again including Cynthia of Wabi-Sabi and to finally meet Wendy, the Constant Quilter in person.  We had a funny adventure through the snowy village :)   They both have great posts on the day too.

Despite or because of the horrid weather, the feeders have been very busy!   Poor little Gold Finchs.
Check out this look.  She seems to be saying what are you doing here?
 Just waiting my turn.....I'm freezing out here!
Last Chance Charlie to win Diane's book or my stencil.
Thank you for all the comments on your quilting stories.  I've enjoyed reading each one.    Click here to enter the giveaway, I will  pick a winner on Saturday.


**The only change to the recipe is that I make my own buttercream frosting with butter, powdered sugar, milk and vanilla - then I added the zest.**


    Crunch layer

    • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
    • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (actual recipe) or 1/2 cup slivered almonds ( actual recipe)
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
    • 1/2 cup butter, melted


    • 1 Pillsbury Plus yellow cake mix
    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1/2 cup orange juice
    • 2 tablespoons grated orange peel
    • 3 eggs
    • 1/3 cup oil


    • 1 pillsbury ready to spread vanilla frosting
    • 1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed
    • 3 tablespoons grated orange peel
    • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel


  1. : Combine crunch layer ingredients. Press 1/2 into each bottom of 2 greased and floured 8" or 9" pans.
  2. : In a large bowl, blend cake ingredients at low speed until moistened. Beat 2 mins at high speed. Pour into pans.
  3. : Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes Cool 10 minutes Remove from pans and cool completely.
  4. : In small bowl, mix frosting & topping. Fold in lemon & orange peels.
  5. : Place one layer, crunch side up, on plate. Spread with 1/2 cup frosting. Top with remaining layer, crunch side up. Spread top and sides with remaining frosting.