Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Western Flowers

I have been hand quilting with stars the butterfly quilt. For some reason, I thought it needed close quilting and started putting the stars about an inch-and-a-half apart. Really dumb idea but now I've started it .... I try to work on it for an hour each day and have about half of it done. It really is easy work while I listen to audio library books that I download onto my computer.

I just had to start a new quilt and have made another top. I'm intrigued with doing blocks using three fabrics. Two of them are fungly but color coordinated and the third is a contrast. I was going to make the blocks like the butterfly quilt but I goofed and ended up with the 12 inch block pictured in the first picture. The second picture shows one arrangement of the first batch of blocks. I cut a few blocks and then sew them and then repeat the progress. The third picture is the arrangement I decided on. The last picture shows the finished top. I pinned it to my drapes. I need to get some quilt hangers and make a design wall here in FL. The top picture has the best color. I see the diagonal line more in the quilt than this picture shows it. This is a easy fun quilt to make. It is 42 by 60 inches and I used every bit of the blue and the flower print. The flower print was left over from the backing of Walk in the Woods that I made in FL during the winter of 2006. I use it for a chair throw.

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Recently I was cleaning out the air fungus in my shrub everygreens which are located at the front of my home. This stuff, which I think is called Spanish Moss, lives independently of the tree but fastens itself to the tree, often at an elbow. They say it doesn't kill the tree but it grows and as it does, it takes over the green leaves. I don't want this to happen and I don't like the looks of it, so I went out to remove as much of it as I could reach. I was dressed in blue jeans, a long sleeve shirt and gloves so I could pull the branches down and wiggle into the interior to get to the trunk. Suddently I see some color at about my eye level. What is it? Oh, my. A snake is curled up on a branch. It is very small, about as big around as my small finger. I go get the camera but I'm not about to move the needles of the tree to get a really good shot. The snake does not move at all and I wonder if it is alive. I'm sure glad it wasn't on one of the branches that I pulled down or it probably would have been dumped on my head. I asked a neighbor about it and she said there are a lot of them and she usually sees them on the ground. I checked the next day and it was gone. The third picture is enlarged so you can see the color better but it is not as big as it looks in that picture. Anyone know what kind of snake it was?
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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veterans' Day

The external fan for my computer is not working so I can't do a long post but I do want to share some pictures of the memorial in my park here in FL after a very moving ceremony this morning.

May we all pause today to remember all the men and women who served and continue to serve our country. And remember their families, too.
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Thursday, November 06, 2008

Here are the pics of of the butterfly quilt that somehow got omitted for the next blog post.
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Wednesday, November 05, 2008


I am very proud to be an American today. I am an old white woman and am so proud that I have lived to see Americans look beyond religion, race, sex and most of all "hateful garbage" to come to the polls and vote for the person they thought would deal best with the issues.

Quilting and More

I brought these two butterfly quilt tops to FL and am hand quilting one of them. I am using the random star technique. Because I'm concerned that the poly batting is not very good quality, I am putting the stars pretty close together. I put in plenty of pins and sew on it on my dining room table. It has a good light hanging over it. I removed the globe and put in a bright bulb. I do limit myself to one hour at a time. It has been many months since I did hand quilting to am getting back in the groove. One thing I like to do is pull the knot through at a seam in the patchwork. I think it goes through easier. I also heard a hint on Sewing With Nancy that has been helpful. Use one of those easy threading needles - the ones that you pull the thread down from the top rather than thread the eye - for the short pieces of thread at the end. I once had some of these needles but didn't like them and got rid of them. So after I heard the hint, I went to Hancock and bought some more. It really does work. I'm using double strand blue embroidery floss. So happy that Hancock is still here near my house in FL.

I dropped an empty Pyrex cup yesterday and it shattered into so many slivers of glass. I didn't think it would do that. Anyway I finally got it all cleaned up without any injuries.

I'm still adjusting to FL. The lock on my back door here is locked when the line on the knob is vertical. My one in MI is locked when it is horizontal. The knobs on my cook stove are also in a different order so I have to stop and think if the one I'm turning on is the burner I want to get hot. Also adjusting to my cable here. In MI when I turn it on, the last channel I had it on is where it comes on again. Here it always comes on to the cable channel. Also finding the channels and times for shows I watch. And where the buttons are on my remote. My DD says all this is good for me. I say I'm lazy.

It is interesting how different we do and say things in different parts of our county. I remember being in Arkansas and saying "pardon". They had never heard anyone say that. Here in FL the news announcers talk about "wrecks". In MI we say accidents. I always think of a wreck as being a mess. Every year when I come here, I miss having the prices actually on the items in the stores. It is required in MI and here I have to look all over for a sign with the price. It seems that a lot of the time there isn't one We also have a 10 cent bottle and can deposit in MI so I'm always separating them from my other recycle items. Every town both here and in MI recycle different things. I have the list on the refrig now. I have found that Walgreen has milk for $3.69 while it is near $5 in the grocery store. I found some great smoked neck bones and made pea soup yesterday. The secret everywhere is to buy what is on sale. I'm also trying to grocery shop every two weeks with just buying milk and bread every week. I made banana cookies with Splenda and pumpkin custard too. Gasoline was just gone down to $2.29. I filled my car up. I hope people don't stop their conservation efforts now.

I got my mobile home power washed. The man also did the inside of my porch, my sheds and driveway so all the black mold is gone. I'm battling fire ants again. I tried using salt but they just move over as it doesn't kill them. I have to be careful not to use anything that will hurt Kipper. The best thing I have found is boiling water but it is a big job boiling and carrying it out to the ant hills. I'm always afraid I'll spill and burn myself.

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Sunday, November 02, 2008

Fabric Stash in FL

I was thinking of making another quilt top but thought I didn't have much in my stash here in FL. Oh was I wrong. See what I took out of the cupboard on the left. The top shelf has white background fabrics that I didn't take out. I had so much fun touching and arranging and thinking and wondering. Some pieces are very small but some are a decent size. The colors still aren't coming through just right but you can see the browns that I laid out and then the blacks. I brought three tops from MI to quilt and there are a couple UFO here too. I went to Hancock Fabrics and bought batting on sale. Looks like I'm all set for this winter.

In case you haven't figured it out, that is a mirror I'm taking the picture into so it s reflecting to show me, my fan and light, a lamp, the window with drapes open to my porch and my neighbors' home. I use my dining room for my sewing room here in FL. That s my sewing machine under the blue fabric in the middle and my sewing light is bent behind the machine.

See the next post for more pics of my stash.
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Look What's In My FL Stash.

Oh my! So much fun.
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