Friday, April 18, 2014

a little bit of a lot

I always find a few random pictures when I upload from my camera. Last week, a friend, my kids, and I went to an art reception for Brad and Nathan Price. Brad is a local artist and mutual friend of ours. My kids love receptions because they have learned that "reception" means "food is there."

We also got to see some great art up close and watch the artists at work.

I wish I had shifted this to the left just a bit so it could've been more about the two of them than just Brad.

This was my favorite of Nathan's artwork on display.

We also took time last weekend to look at our neighborhood rock display. We were watching the recap of the OU scrimmage on tv and saw a picture of them. I realized that while I made many trips there with my son, I couldn't remember taking my daughter there at all.

Early this week, I spent most of my free time finishing up the blocks for my Penny Patch quilt. It took up a lot of room, and I realized that it was time to tweak the room arrangement AGAIN.

It is warmer now, and that door beyond that quilt needs to be accessible, not blocked by zillions of little quilt squares that no one should touch. And that rock holding up the design boards was a bit precarious too. So I got it arranged then put them in stacks for each row and have been slowly working to change them from this

to this

It's a bit monotonous, so I decided to start another project to work on in between, to break it up.
And I made a batch of cookies to surprise my son's class when they finished the last day of CRT's.

It's still going to seem slow, but I have a goal of finishing by next Friday so I can take it along on our planned field trip to shoot the pictures of it. If it doesn't rain that day.

As soon as I got the quilt blocks out of the way, I started moving the furniture around. I took a shelf load of books out of the room to move them to my new office (once it has been remodeled and they let me in). They will hang out in my room for a month or two since there is no room in my current office. This afternoon I was able to open the door, listen to the birds and a nearby track meet, and sew away.

It won't last long. Once it gets to 100+ an open door will not be good. But that deck outside is shady on one end and is a great hang out with the kids. They will be happy I moved my mess out of the way!

Friday, April 11, 2014

the dawn of spring-- an April quilt

Back in December I found out another friend was going to have a baby. That same night she asked me to make a baby quilt.  Fast forward a few months and we now know it is a girl--and she has a new quilt.

At some point I decided I would like to use the two Marmalade charm packs I had, and got it ok'd with mom. I also had hoped to try a design I found in one of my older quilt books, one that I had purchased years before I started making them. In 2005 according to Amazon, which just threw that little tidbit in when I searched to add the link.

A week or so ago, when thinking about this blog post, I glanced at the title of that quilt and smiled. The original quilt is all black and grays and suits the name, but mine seems the opposite, full of color and light. I named it the "the dawn of spring," tying in the little girl's middle name. Of course, she will probably call it "blankie."

I combed over it to find the little bits of thread, then laid it on my bed to fold it and tie on the ribbon. I spied a little smudge of dirt, and tried to brush it off, thinking it had gotten some on it when I was taking the pictures. It didn't come off. I tried a little water, which made the fabric transparent enough that I could see the blade of grass sandwiched in there. Nice. So after a minor arthroscopic surgery, the grass is out, the quilt is back in the wash, and hopefully all will be well this time so I can take it to it's home. Grass is great for spring and the name of the quilt and all, but that is really a bit much.

As a side note, I've had one of my newest quilts on my bed the past few days and like it so much that it has made it easier to pick through the ever growing pile of quilts and let go of one. I have added Russian Roulette to my shop--you can find it here (or on the link on the right of the page)!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

random outdoorsiness

The weather has been warm and sunny (until today) so we've spent a lot more time outdoors the past few days. I am paying for it with allergy craziness but am hoping that the rain today will clean the air a bit, for a day or two anyway. I really need to go to sleep so here are some pictures and few words of what we've been up to when we aren't at school and work.

Mini golf with Uncle Todd and Aunt Agnes

Medieval Fair


Saturday morning soccer

Saturday afternoon art time


Now on to bed. The morning will be here too soon.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

a sunny weekend

With a soccer tournament for one child and the start of the season for the other, we got to spend a lot of time out in the sunshine this weekend. VERY thankful for the sunshine.

I have a funny set of photos I took while she was getting ready to score one of her goals. She is kicking it toward the goal and then one of the girls from the other team leans down to pick it up.
Grace was with me when I looked at the pictures and said she told her she shouldn't pick it up. Sure enough, my next picture was the "lecture."
What's even funnier is that after she gives her the mini-lecture, she keeps kicking the ball and scores on them.


After this we headed to the end of the first tournament game. I didn't get many pictures from this tournament because they played on the giant fields (used in 11v11) and just couldn't get much even with the longer lens. This is the best one I have, from the game this morning.

They ended up with a second place medal.
the Sharks plus their tourney guest players

Their crazy shoes.

Later this afternoon we spent some more time outside, doing some art and just hanging out on the porch. 

They even offered to pick up the rest of the sweet gum balls laying in our driveway, in exchange for marbles.
And of course, since I had them watch a video about Istanbul and Isaac got to see some market bartering in action, he thought this would be the best way to decide how many marbles they should each get.
They need some practice if they are gonna keep trying that with this seasoned pro. :)

Friday, March 28, 2014

a March quilt...sort of

Despite several other quilts in the past week or so, I finished a quilt today. It is a gift that hasn't been gifted though, so for now only one picture:

I really like how it turned out and will show you more pics as soon as I can.

Along the way, I picked out a couple of fabrics. They shared similar colors but were a bit different style.

I had them propped up on my bookshelf for awhile. With that cross on one and the little chicks on the other, it reminded me of Easter but I did not want to make an "Easter" quilt. One quilt I have wanted to make though is a Penny Patch, which I saw on the StitchedInColor blog (tutorial here). I looked through her fabric requirements and started digging through my fabric.

 I ended up with this, a mix of light blue, orange, a pop of violet, and a lot of neutrals. I needed 4 more low volume pieces but had everything else (I have since traded out that brown bird fabric for a different one). All of the pieces are now cut, with the largest squares laid out in the room. Grace tripped/slid into the room one day and knocked a few out of whack, so after getting it back how I wanted them, I took some pics with my phone. Which helped me put it all back together after the quilt I was quilting dragged all over them and messed it up way worse than she ever did.

I've also started a baby quilt earlier this week after I received the shower invitation. I had already planned what I was going to do a month or two ago but now had a potential deadline. It is made of half square triangles. All of those are sewn and cut and now need to be pieced into blocks. And I have no pictures but maybe next time!

Other than finishing that quilt, I did not sew any more today. I needed to do a chore or two, and spent a large chunk of the morning deciding on and buying some plants for the path along one side of my house. Now I just have to keep them alive! I always try to plant these things before the big spring rains (if we get them) so they can get a good soaking before baking in our hot summers.

For now that's all. Can't be spoiling all the quilty surprises.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

more spring breaking

Thursday was a work day, and since the kids were out of school, it was a "take your kids to work" day. We had a lot of work we could do to finish setting up another apartment--meaning I didn't have to sit at my desk all day with the kids going crazy in the room.

We got it mostly done that day and I was able to hand off the key on Saturday.

After all that, we were ready for another field trip. To a field. We had planned to go to my parents Friday, and with the forecasted warmer weather, we shifted it to a fishing trip on their land.

 I caught the first one, and even got to reuse the worm. The little fish were hungry and made it a fun fishing day. It was also wonderful to sit by the water out in the middle of the field, just watching the water, trees, and an occasional bird. And the bobber dipping down under the water again.

It took him a bit but he finally got one--and it was a bigger one, and a bass!
But he caught plenty of these too:

The cattle came to see what we were doing. They seemed a bit stunned that someone was sitting at THEIR watering hole.

After a picnic lunch, we went hiking a bit through the grass. I've been reading the Little House on the Prairie books to Grace, and felt a bit like we were out there, with the tv soundtrack running through my head.

I attempted a "scenic" shot of my most recent quilt, but the noon day sun overexposed the quilt and I couldn't tell until I got home. It does look better in black and white though, and as an added bonus, in black and white, the "lumps" on the ground just look like dirt.

My son lead the way at this point and took off through grass over my daughter's head. She did not like that and I suggested we head back to the pond. We did spot an old tombstone for a horse along the way.

The day was a wonderful end to our spring break field trips, and I look forward to more trips back this summer, especially during blackberry season!