Thursday, May 23, 2019

I Like Thursday: Chocolate and Pretty Things

I have attended the Newburyport Chocolate Tour with my mother the last couple of years.  This year it was a beautiful day - perfect for wandering around Newburyport.

First stop was the Garrison Inn.  It was a tough choice which chocolate to take from their wonderful selection.  But I was more impressed with the marble floor.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

NYB Modified C&A Blocks

These blocks have the stripy arc from the F block that make me think of dental molding.  These have a modified C block center (dental on the rim) with a modified A block outside edge (dental and solid triangles).  The block in the lower left is an original A block, for comparison.  I really liked that dental look on the F blocks and wanted more of that in the quilt.  Forty-five pieces!  This is the most complex block of the lot.  

It's funny how the blocks fight with me.  I had wanted to do the second block with the dark and light blue for the stripy bits.  But I could not get a gold/yellow combination that worked for the triangles.  I really wanted those colors, though.  When I finally made the triangles blue, everything else fell in place.  It's a pretty block.  Hard to say which of the three is my favorite.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

I Like Thursday: Sewing, Cooking, Videos

Knowing that I'm now using an older machine for all my projects, a friend of mine sent me this story of a sewing machine that nearly burned down the house.  Yikes!  I've started to unplug my Singer when I'm done with it instead of just turning off the light.  Thanks for the good advice!  It's good to have friends that look out for me.

I have no idea how I found this recipe for chicken stroganoff.  Mom used to make beef stroganoff when I was a kid, but I almost never buy beef.  So when I saw this recipe I was intrigued.  And the spices!  this is not like any stroganoff I'd tried before.  It is delicious and easy to make (we had it for dinner Tuesday night).  

Monday, May 13, 2019

NYB F & Modified B Blocks

The three F&B blocks bring my finished number to 38.  Only eight left to go!  These had the F block middle and a modified B block outer rim (I doubled the number of spikes).

I really liked the dental portion of the F block (you can see in the lower left).  I'm incorporating that into a modified version another block.  I've started work on those and hope to be done by the end of the week.  Lots of little pieces!

I'm having problems as I approach the end of these blocks.  My color pallet is shrinking.  I finished off some fabrics.  Others are in pieces that are not the right shape - either too skinny or too squat to use where I want them.  With so few blocks left to go, I am loathe to start adding new fabrics to the mix.  I can't run out and buy more of the fabrics that came from my stash.  However, I did cut too many background pieces (in an effort not to get to the end and have too few).  It may be time to start cannibalizing a few of them for the colors I really want (or at least the ones I know don't look good in the background).

Thursday, May 9, 2019

I Like Thursday: Trees, a Chuck, and Mabel

Spring is really leafing out.  How delightful.  I love this trio of trees.  They look the same all summer, but in the spring, they're different colors.  How pretty!

I like that whenever I visit home, my mother gives me newspaper clippings of stories that might interest me.  She handed me this article (found it online, too).  Think the Drapes of Doom that I work with are big?  According to this article these are 10 feet wide and up to 370 feet long.  Now those are some serious drapes!  I can't even imagine how heavy they'd be!

Monday, May 6, 2019

Mabel's Adoption Day

Today is Mabel's Gotcha Day.  In less than a year I've gone from one pig to two pigs then back to one pig.  Wowza.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

NYB H&D Blocks

Easter and NEFFA and life slowed down my stitching.  So I am very excited to have completed my next set of blocks.  These are the H block center and the D block outside (without the solid outside edge).  This makes them a C-size block.

My sister came over for candy making and stayed to play with her quilt.  We reviewed what I'd done so far.  She's loving it.  Yay!

She'll be back when I'm finished piecing the rounds for the final layout.  I'm up to 35 completed (although three need modifications).  Eleven left to go!

Sharing with Confessions of a Fabric Addict - Can I Get a Whoop Whoop?

Thursday, May 2, 2019

I Like Thursday: Holding

Not much this week - life got in the way of sewing and blogging.  I'm hoping for more time to myself this week.

I chuckle every time I see this picture of Darius Goff at the library (the building is named after him).  He's my dad's doppelganger from 130 years ago.

Get a load of these little green army men doing yoga.  Silly, but cute.

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Remembering Wedgwood

When we adopted Wedgwood her name was Storm.  It was a good name - she was certainly a stormy pig.  But I named her Wedgwood, which fit this wedgy, whiny, grey and white pig.  

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Highs and Lows

I spent the day yesterday with a couple of good friends.  It was a lovely day - everything I had anticipated.  We discussed the ups and downs of life over mugs of tea.  We went for a hike in the woods.  It was pretty.  No leaves on the trees yet, but plenty of green moss.  We searched for a wrecked boat at the top of a hill (and found it too!).  We enjoyed good food and each other's company.  They day flew by; I wish we had more time.  Uplifting!

Thursday, April 25, 2019

I Like Thursday: Goodies of All Sorts

I like that my mushrooms finally fruited!  It's a small batch of oyster mushrooms; I'm so happy it finally worked.  They were pretty; much different than the usual mushrooms I get at the store.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Easter Candy 2019

I kept busy on Saturday (and a bit on Monday) making lots of chocolates.  Saturday it was a group affair with my friends.  My sister even made a late appearance, which was very cool. 

We do a lot of dipping.  Aren't all the centers pretty?  There's Oreo truffles, pumpkin cheesecake truffles, two types of buttercreams, cookie dough truffles and peanut butter balls.  I forgot to get mint Oreos this year, so we added raspberry flavoring to the plain Oreos I got.  We made some mint buttercreams instead.

Along with the pretty truffles, we made black and white paves, butterscotch nests, ginger nut clusters and toffee.  Everything came out beautifully.  

Monday, April 22, 2019

Happy Birthday Mabel!

According to her documentation, Miss Mabel is six years old today.  She likes long afternoon naps, still expects treats to be delivered directly to her.  Wedgwood's attempts to teach her to beg has been largely ignored.  When she's really motivated, she'll come down to the floor and mooch at whoever is in the kitchen.

Mabel acts like a little old lady some of the time.  In between she acts like a queen or a much younger guinea pig.  This is a pig that knows she's landed the good life.

Happy birthday, Mabel.

So - is it time for cake? 

Saturday, April 20, 2019

NYB H&B Blocks

The NYB block patterns I've been using come in three sizes (which happen to be labeled as my A, B and C blocks).  Six of the patterns were size A, two size B and two size C.  I can tack on another ring to B and C to make them larger, but I'm still hoping to use them at the size they are.  It depends on the quilt's final layout.  Therefore, of the 16 blocks I have left to make, I'm only making a few of the B and C sizes.

I made two blocks with merged patterns:  B's outer ring with H's center.  The upper two in the photo are H&B, the bottom blocks are a B and an H for comparison.

When I put the first one together, I followed the original assembly order, which caused all the seams to be ironed the same direction.  I had to deal with bulky points.  So I made notes on the paper pattern pieces to assemble B in the opposite direction.  And what did I do?  I stitched H in the opposite order, too.  So I have one block with bulky seams to the right, the other with all the bulk to the left.  Maybe if I made a third block, I'd get it right that time?

Thursday, April 18, 2019

I Like Thursday: NEFFA, Cake

I'm going to start this post with my last like of the weekend:  a last bit of peanut butter cup cheesecake.  This was my reward for making it through NEFFA.  We had left the festival too late on Saturday night to stop at White's Bakery, so we made a detour to Gregg's to pick up a slice of toffee cake.  Turns out they had the cheesecake, too (it's a special, not on their usual menu).  I was so excited to bring home a slice.  I saved it for my Sunday night treat.  Yum!

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

NYB J Blocks

This is the last of the NYB patterns I printed out.  I still need more blocks for my sister's quilt.  The next ones I make will be a blend of patterns.  Several of the pieces are interchangeable.  I could modify a few pieces with my own design, too.  Let's see what happens when I swap them about!

I'm making the quilt based on a couple of different designs.  I just realized the design I was using to count blocks is one row longer than my quilt.  D'oh!  So instead of 20-24 blocks remaining, I'm down to a mere 16.  Plus I found a layout that matches what I want.  Even better!

Wow - I may be done piecing in May, then quilting in June.  I've warned my sister that although it should be done this summer, I may want to submit it to the Topsfield Fair.  In which case, she may not really get it until mid-October.  I've already had a few people encouraging me to enter it in the fair.  We'll see.  First things first - I need to finish it!

Sharing with Sew Fresh Quilts - Let's Bee Social

Saturday, April 13, 2019

NYB I Blocks - Halftime Adjustments

I seem to say "These are my favorite blocks!" each time I finish another set of NYBs.  So for now, these are my favorites.

Don't they look like rays of the sun?  I like how they appear to be tucked behind each other.  Neat!  I puzzled over piecing the first one for a while, because of the angles.  I got the hang of it somewhere in the second block.

After laying out the first half of the quilt, I decided I don't want a whole lot of the really light yellows and blues.  I liked the bright yellows and dark golds best.  The rust red, blacks and purple do well, so I'll be sure to make more blocks with them.  My sister and I had picked a brown and a lighter fabric that had some dull green, but I just can't get those to feel right in a block.  I've set them to the side but at this point, I doubt they'll get into the quilt.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

I Like Thursday: Birds, Toys, Dancing and Sewing

I glanced at the feeder on Tuesday and thought the goldfinch was looking a little green and grey.  I know their summer colors are still coming in, but this one didn't look right.  Then he sang.  Ha - not a goldfinch, but a pine warbler!  I discovered they're the only warbler that visits feeders.  I've never seen one here before.  He's been back several times every day.

A titmouse visiting last spring had one back feather that stuck straight up off his back.  Very odd.  Tuesday I caught glimpse of titmouse that had a feather shaft sticking out in the same spot.  Same bird, I'm guessing?  I had thought it was the bird equivalent of bed-head, but I guess it's really stuck like that?  (I wanted a photo, but he was too shy.)

Sunday, April 7, 2019

NYB H Blocks

Another set!  This is the halfway point. Well - I will probably need several extra blocks to finish this.  But as far as I'm concerned, I'm celebrating.

These blocks were a pain.  Points upon points!  Bulky seams.  Lots of matching.  I like how they look, though.

I cut some border fabric and tossed what I had on the floor.  This is roughly what the top half of the quilt will look like.  First of all:  neat!  Secondly, I can certainly see pieces I'd want to move around.  That upper left corner is crying for another circle up there, so that's three or four more blocks I need to do.  Some of the lighter blue jumps more than I thought it would.  A few of the solid blocks just aren't working for me.  It's interesting how different the big picture looks compared to the individual pieces.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

I Like Thursday: Chillin'

Back to a short-list of likes this week.  A relaxing weekend of lots of sewing and walking doesn't generate a whole lot of stuff to show-and-tell.

I caught this squirrel just hanging out on the back deck, sunning himself.  He was so totally relaxed.  Usually they're all wound up and raiding my feeders.  Not this guy.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

NYB G Blocks

Finished these blocks over the weekend.  So simple, yet this design is one of my favorites.  They all ended up with a dark band through the middle.  I tried lighter colors on two of the blocks and it just didn't look right.  So dark it was for all of them.

The H blocks are up next.  They have some similarities to these, but with long, skinny points.  I'd like to have them done by the weekend - they'll mark the halfway point.

Sharing with:
Sew Fresh Quilts - Let's Bee Social

Sunday, March 31, 2019

NYB F Blocks

These were fun blocks to make.  There were few points to line up, so even thought this has the most pieces of all my NYB patterns, it were easy to work with.  Easy doesn't mean fast!  I noted the last one took me a good two hours to complete.

I waver back and forth between the progress on these blocks and being anxious about how they'll all fit together.  I try to envision how it will look as I pick fabrics, then take the plunge of assembling it.  I've learned not to cut the solid bands until I have the rest stitched together because my first choice is rarely what I end up with.  This is so different than most of my quilts - my angst is mostly done with by the time I start stitching stuff together.  Even a badly botched block could be ripped apart and put back together.  I'm not sure I'd attempt that with one of these blocks.

Once I get another two sets done, I'll start arranging what I have so far to get a feel, then adjust color combos for the remaining blocks, if needed.  The blocks can look so different between being up close or from across the room.  I'm sure that will change again as I line them up all together.

The next few block patterns are simpler.  We'll see how they go. Onward and upward!

Thursday, March 28, 2019

I Like Thursday: Friends and Fun

It was a busy week - I have a bunch of likes to share.

This little hawk has been coming to the front feeders in the last week.  I don't think it's interested in the birdseed, though.  So far, I've heard two attacks, but she's come away empty handed.  I can't tell if this is a Cooper's hawk or a Sharp-Shinned hawk.  Very shy - I'm surprised I managed to catch this photo.  I may not like that she's going after the little songbirds, but her flying skills are impressive.

I took Thursday off from work to catch up with a childhood friend and her daughter.  They were in Boston touring colleges.  I had so much fun kicking around the city with them.  I go to Boston so rarely. 

I got to tag along for a tour of MIT.  The campus was interesting and I learned all sorts of little things I hadn't known before.  It's an impressive place.

The place they stayed overlooked the Boston Common.  It was positively stunning at night with the State House lit up and all the lights of the city.  (Sorry - no photos - I left the camera at home.)

I like that we made a stop at Mike's Pastry before heading home.  Lobster tail!

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

NYB E Blocks

This block was surprisingly time consuming considering it had less pieces than others I've done so far.  I had difficulty keeping the curves flat and smooth.  I tore the freezer paper while peeling it off my first piece.  Had to print and fold another one.  The outer rim was problematic - I no longer had a single large swath of the fabric I wanted for this piece.  I was smart to have cut my other large pieces first; I just hadn't considered this block.  I was ironing the last block when I found a deep nick in one of the pieces.  I had to carefully remove and replace the piece.  What a pain.

Aren't they pretty, though?

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Lipstick on a Pig?

I do not like to share berries with my guinea pigs.  Raspberries, blackberries, blueberries are mine, all mine!  (Besides, they shouldn't have much fruit because of sugar content.)  They get a few cranberries in season, strawberry tops and the very, very rare blueberry.

They lucked out yesterday, scoring two blackberries.  We came back from grocery shopping and as I rotated what was left in the fridge, I found a couple of squashed blackberries.  Wedgwood was not sure what to make of them.  Smelled good enough to bite, but then she dropped it and tried to bite my finger instead.  No, no, not me!

I came back a few minutes later to see their verdict.  The berries were all gone - but they left a telltale mark.  I laughed when I saw Wedgwood's very pink lips.  Blackberry is a good color on her, don't you think?  She looked like a little tart. 

Thursday, March 21, 2019

I Like Thursday: Fabric, Music

Ryco's big sale was on Saturday.  The place was packed with happy people (even a husband patiently working with his wife picking colors for a quilt seemed engaged - he was pleasant to talk to).  It took me a lot longer than usual to get my fabric cut and checked out.  But what a festive atmosphere!

I was there half for myself, half for my sister's quilt.  I was disappointed not to find some lovely bolt in the Bargain Hunter's Cove.  The inexpensive stuff was long gone by the time I got there.  But I found fat quarters that begged to come home with me.

Monday, March 18, 2019

NYB C Blocks & D Blocks

Six more blocks done!  First the C blocks - I included the A block in the photo because I didn't want a blank corner.

I'm partial to the high-contrast ones.  On the other hand, I think the blended blocks will keep the quilt from being too busy.

I've been taping these all to the wall.  This is the first time I wished I had an honest-to-goodness design wall.  Normally I cut everything out, lay it out in my design floor, arrange it, then pin it together and pick it up.  It's transient.  These, though... I want to see all of them to help me choose what colors to make the next one.  I could use something a bit more permanent than the floor.  The tape isn't holding so well, so I'm cobbling something together with string and mini clothespins.  It's holding so far....

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Opinionated Quilt

A quilt with five or six fabrics is relatively straightforward :  pick the colors, follow the pattern.  It rolls along.  True scrappy quilts are good too - just jam whatever pieces of fabric you have together.  It's all good.  But these somewhat-scrappy, coordinated quilts are amazingly opinionated.

I was just about finished with the latest set of NYB blocks when it said:  I need more red.

Are you sure?  Very little of the original fabrics that my sister and I selected were red.

Definitely.  More red.  Look at how perfectly these two reds from your stash go with what you have for the quilt.

Okay.  Maybe I could add those.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

I Like Thursday: Paper Piecing

I've been busy paper piecing, working on my sister's quilt.  It's soaking up my free time, which is reflected in this week's likes.  For more variety, be sure to check out the other posts on Not Afraid of Color's I Like Thursday

I find it interesting how a different corner color can change the whole block.  

My pedometer is loving paper piecing.  This is not a sedentary project; there's a lot of back-and-forth to the ironing board.  I racked up well over a quarter mile (really?) working on one block last week and even more last Sunday.

I like the paper piecing technique I learned at Cunuck Quilter's tutorial.  I've also incorporated a version of this strip idea with my blocks.  It's been working pretty well!

I like paper piecing with batiks - no wrong sides to sew together.  I've ripped out six more wrong-side seams with other fabrics (and there will be more before this is done).  Still need to make sure to leave enough seam allowance, though.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

More Block A

I lettered my blocks to keep them all straight.  These are my A blocks, with potential backgrounds.  I'm envisioning a lot of mix-and-matching once I have enough blocks to start laying out the quilt.

Still learning.  These blocks have a bit of padding along the edges to make sure I can cut them down to 12½" square.  I also discovered not to cut the centers or the solid strip until the rest was sewn up.  The colors I picked at the start didn't seem to go at the end.  I swapped gold for black, and red, purple and gold for dark blue and bright yellow.  It's interesting how it all works together.

Monday, March 11, 2019

Lose Some, Win Some

I walked into the kitchen to find this grape tomato in the middle of the floor.  Which was odd, because when I had last seen this tomato, it was with Mabel under the stool at the bottom of their ramp.  She'd even managed to bite into it.  Grape tomatoes are tricky:  tough skins to bite into and they have a tendency to roll away.  Usually once a guinea pig pierces the skin, they can conquer the rest of it.

Evidently, not Mabel.

I've seen guinea pigs roll stubborn tomatoes into corners, hold it down with a paw to keep it from rolling long enough to bite into it.  One of my pigs knew to bite straight down into it.  Mabel does not have any of those talents.

I saw this and wondered - did it just keep getting away from her?  She's not afraid of the wood floor but I can't imagine her following it that far.  Far more amusing that she attempted to take a second bite and shot it across the floor and she had no idea where it went.  Mabel fail.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

NYB Gear Shift

Well, my goal of 10 blocks a week is really off.  I'm still making progress.  Isn't this a pretty block?  Halfway through it I started to thinking of the next block's colors.  That got me wondering if I shouldn't cut the background pieces first, to make sure I didn't use too much of those fabrics and not leave enough to cut the large triangle piece.  That led me to consider if I had enough background fabric in the first place.  And I was fully down the rabbit hole...

I stopped piecing and went back to cutting.  Usually I calculate blocks and yardage before I buy fabric.  But this quilt, with paper piecing?  I didn't know where to begin.  I had yardage for the backing, binding and border, but the rest is very much made up as I go along.  I have ideas and I know I have a tendency to underestimate so I tried to compensate where I could.  The backgrounds, though?  I realized I should cut them before I used those designated fabrics anywhere else in the quilt.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

I Like Thursday: Winter Came Late

Winter waited until March to arrive.  First was a few inches of powdery snow and lots of wind.  A day later came another eight inches of heavy snow.  Earlier snowfalls were immediately followed by warmer days, so it melted quickly.  It's been cool enough this should hang around for the week.  

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Cilantro Tug-of-War

Mabel came down down the ramp to mooch at me on Saturday afternoon.  I rummage through the fridge for some cilantro.  I made her come out on the floor for it, but didn't let go.  A tug-of-war ensued.  Mabel fled before we could grab the camera.

Later, both Wedgwood and Mabel came down.  I bet Wedg smelled cilantro on Mabel's breath.  One does not let another guinea pig eat all the good stuff alone!  This time we grabbed cilantro and the camera at the same time.

Wedg and Mabel are so entertaining.  And persistent!  Even on that slippery wood floor. 

Monday, March 4, 2019

NYB Beginnings

I have begun the New York Beauty quilt!  These are the first three (of 49+) blocks.

I haven't squared out the blocks yet.  This is for two reasons.  First, I'm not sure which background color I want to start adding to these.  Secondly, my sister requested all the circles be the same size.  The patterns I'm using come in three different circumferences, which I can easily force to one size by adding an extra band to the two smaller sizes.  But I'm wondering if I really want to do that.  The goal is to make these look like circles - so rather than making them all the same size, I may instead pair up the similar-sized patterns for any circular combinations.  Does that make sense?  Either way, I'll wait until I get several more partial blocks completed before I decide how add the background.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

I Like Thursday: Improvements

Welcome to this week's linkup to Not Afraid of Color's I Like Thursday.

I like the unicorn fabric I found on Saturday.  Whimsical!  I just had to bring it home with me.

I am not fond of my morning burpees.  But I can't argue with the results:  I had my fastest swim time for a mile this week (32:41) - best in at least three years!  So I'll stick with them, thank you very much.

Never underestimate the power of some time with friends.  Enjoyed Game Day a lot.  (My friends seemed happy to see me, but it may have been Sour Cream Coffee Cake and Date Bars I brought.)

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

I used to make this cake all the time.  Then I didn't for years.  I dug out the recipe last month when I needed to use up some sour cream.  The typewritten recipe I have is very terse, most of the method I had learned from watching my aunt.  I had forgotten a few of the tricks, like how to layer it in the bundt pan.  It looked funny, but was still delicious.

I made it again - just to make sure I remembered it all.  Maybe add a few more sentences to the instructions than:  Layer mixture/topping/mixture/topping in a 13x9" pan or bundt pan.  That way, if I don't make it for another five years, I'll still know what to do.

Looks much better this time.  Was a hit at Game Day.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

I Went to Buy Just One Thing

Ryco had a sale for wide backing, so I went to buy one for my sister's quilt (the golden brown block at the top of the photo).  Ryco has a great selection of fat quarters, so I browsed through them for more backgrounds for the NYB blocks.  Of course I didn't stop there.  One always has to make a trip through the Bargain Hunter's Cove... and of course some of that fabric came with me.

I found seven fat quarters that looked like good possibilities for my sister's quilt (and if they don't, I like them anyway).  All of them are batiks, although that hadn't been my intent.  I was drawn to the pebbly grey fabric and a black flowery print - I seem to be on a black-and-white kick lately.  Then behold!  blue fabric with unicorns, maidens and castles.  It was in the fat quarter bargain bin - I had to come home with that!  Have no idea what I'll do with it, but it amuses me.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

I Like Thursday: Sweet Remainders

I liked a lot of things in the last week. 

Did you see?  I have the fabric for my sister's quilt.  I'm discovering some of the pattern pieces are interchangeable, which is exciting - more variety with the patterns I have.  I misplaced one of the pattern pieces, but the rest are labeled and ready to go.

On the way home Fabric Place Basement I stopped by White's bakery for a belated Valentine's gift.  Note to self - don't go there at the end of the day.  Several trays were empty.  Still, I got some good stuff:  mousse cake, key lime tart and a peanut butter chocolate crunch cake.  It was delicious!  The mousse cake was tough to split; we each wanted the lion's share.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

I Have Fabric!

Look at all the pretty colors!  My sister and I finally got our chance to go fabric shopping.  I was so nervous when I brought the bag of material home.  So many chances to screw up.  Eek!  But then I washed and ironed the new fabric and felt a little calmer.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

I Like Thursday: Lovely Things

Happy Valentine's Day.  May you get to spend some time with someone you love.  Of course, some of your loved ones may not be humans.  Like some of mine.

I love Mabel and her moochie nose.  It's so hard to get a photo of her just chilling out, because as soon as I get near with the camera, she starts looking for treats.

Wedgwood, on the other hand, is much easier to capture all comfy and relaxed.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Pattern Adventure

My next big quilting project is a queen sized quilt for my sister.  She really liked these designs.  I bookmarked these patterns years ago (a NYB quilt has been on my bucket list for a while) which I plan to use for this quilt.  I'm still working out how big of a border.  My sister wants the design to really just be on the top of the quilt, which would mean a big fat border.  I think the circle patterns would look pretty draped over the edge, so I'm looking to do a border more in line with the designs on that link.

Ulla's New York Beauty patterns are for eight-inch blocks.  That many blocks on a queen sized quilt was a bit daunting.  Then my sister showed me the design she liked, I decided to enlarge the patters to be 12-inch blocks.  That was easier said than done.  The math was easy - enlarge the pattern by 150%.  After that I kept hitting problems.  Turns out my printer can't handle printing to a page that big.  Rob had access to a printer that could handle it, but then couldn't get any of the software to simply print a PDF file at 150%.  He did the heroic thing, pulled up all the pages in some software, resized each page to the correct size, and saved it all in one big PDF.  And then printed them (they fit on tabloid sized paper, if you're interested).  Yay!  I have printed patterns.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Selvedge Blocks

Now that I'm all done making selvedge triangles, I needed a new project for all the fabric ends I've kept.  I liked the design of this bright scrappy string quilt and thought it might work well with selvedges.

Two things:  I wanted to make 8-inch blocks and I didn't want to sew on a foundation.  Shiplapped was so heavy and bulky to work with because there was so much fabric in every block.  I decided to make a template for the center wedge and sew the strings to that.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

I Like Thursday: A Smattering of Stuff

Welcome to this week's likes.  It's going to be over the place.

I have always been fascinated how people can pin their hair up with chopsticks.  I bought this pair of child-sized chopsticks years ago (possibly last century?).  I couldn't get them to work, so I split them up to use around the house.  Recently I found both pieces and gave them another try.  Hey!  It works! (mostly)

Saturday, February 2, 2019

A Happy Recheck

We went back to the vet last Thursday for a recheck.  Good news all around.

First, I was excited to see Dr. Holmes.  It was her first day back after a leave of absence.  I was glad to see her.

Second, Mabel gained 100 grams in less than two weeks.  No stones detected - so hopefully she passed them.  We'll keep an eye on her in case they return.  In the meantime, she's back to her normal moochie self.

Third, Dr. Holmes saw Wedgwood for the first time since her surgery in August.  She was happy to see Wedg doing so well.  The tumor seems to have stopped growing. 

Thursday, January 31, 2019

I Like Thursday: Digging Out

I lost a week, somehow.  Even now, I have another blog post half written that I just don't seem to have the time to finish.  Nuts.  But I am in a much happier place that I was last week.  Huzzah!

I was thrilled to make it to the Peterborough Snow Ball on Saturday.  (Certainly helped improve my mood.)  I made it through most of nine hours of dancing.  It was a small crowd to begin with (this was the first dance of the day), but it was packed by 4pm.  Accidentally had my camera set to black and white - so this is an artsy-fartsy shot. 

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Medicating Mabel

Mabel had been losing weight very slowly over December.  Not enough to be alarming, but enough that I was watching her.  Then early in the new year, she dropped another ounce and I found blood spots on the fleece.  You know what this means....

Road Trip!

The vet is not a place that any guinea pig wants to go.  It didn't take long to confirm that Mabel has a few tiny bladder stones.

Mabel does not like her face being touched.  I've tried to get her used to having her teeth examined.  Nope.  Not cool.  So giving her meds twice a day is a challenge.  (I tried taking videos, but it looks like I'm trying to strangle her - really, I'm not!)  She also won't stay in the bowl - I've had her leap out and try to leap into the cage multiple times.  Mabel likes the taste of the medication, but she still won't take them on her own.