Monday, October 31, 2005

Spelling words

Maddie just got home from school. Since we are going trick-or-treating tonight I thought I would check to see if she has any homework she needs to get started on. Every week they have spelling words, usually about 8.

Today she came home with 16 spelling words. SIXTEEN! And they are not just easy little words. Keep in mind that she is in FIRST GRADE. Granted she is gifted and talented (just like her parents!) but this list is insane. Check it out!


I am exhausted just typing those words out. Better hand this list off to Maddie so she can get started!

New National Holiday

I am hereby declaring today as "Sarah's Sewing Day". My house is clean, the laundry is mostly done, one child is at school, and the other one is still asleep. Hubby just dragged himself out of bed. Oh for the life of a professor!

Anyway - I have not gotten to sew for more than 5 minutes in probably a month. So today I am shirking all other responsibilities and I am going to sit down and sew. First I am going to work on getting the borders put on the coffee quilt so that I can get busy quilting it. I am going to put on a thin cream colored border and then use all the left overs to make squares around the outside edge. Here are the browns that will make up the border.

After that I am going to work on a YBR quilt I am making as a going away gift for our preacher and his wife. They are leaving after Christmas. I have all the strips sewn together and am now ready to iron and then cut everything back apart. I am using lots of blues - all from my stash. I am going for a kind of Monet look. Not sure if it is going to work or not. What do you think?

And last but not least - just a little late - here is my contribution to Stash Sunday. This is a great black fabric with little yellow flowers on it. I bought about 10 yards of it at Hobby Lobby - for $1 a yard. That's right, $1.00 . This particular Hobby Lobby had not been clearancing their fabrics like they were supposed to - so they were having a huge blowout sale. Everything was priced anywhere from $1 up to $5. They had all the sale fabrics piled in these huge cardboard boxes. The boxes were about four feet by four feet and about two feet deep. So they had the bolts standing up in the boxes and then piled up on top of that. So you had to dig for your treasures but there were a lot of great fabrics in there. I think I only spent about $30 but got about 20 yards of fabric. Anyway - this black one is destined to become a quilt backing somewhere down the road.

I'd better get to quilting before the day is gone and all I've done is blog! Why don't all of you go declare your own national holiday and join me in the sewing room?

Sunday, October 30, 2005

World's cutest pirate

Today the kids went to a friend's birthday party that had a pirate theme. Needless to say, Ian was worn out. He came home around 4:30, had a snack, sat down to watch TV and promptly fell asleep. Don't you just want to kiss that sweet face?

Saturday, October 29, 2005

My sweet featherweight

Today I thought I would share a picture of my sweet little featherweight sewing machine. I bought her on e-bay a year ago for $250. She is a 1951 model, but not a centennial, don't quite understand that. Anyway, she has scratches and paint chips and is not all shiny, but I LOVE to sew on her. She is so nice and quiet and has a beautiful straight stitch. I use her all the time - unless I need a zig-zag stitch - then I resort to dragging out my newer Singer. I have the featherweight sitting on top of the green plastic bowls to make her a little taller. My sewing table is kind of low and the bowls get the machine up to a comfortable height so I am not all hunched over. I do love my sewing table too. My dad made it for me when I started quilting about six years ago. Ok, I'll go take a picture of it too. Hang on...I'll be right back!

Was I quick enough? Anyway - my dad made me this table when I started quilting. He made the cubbies exactly the size to hold the large plastic shoeboxes. This is where I keep all my current projects. The top left box has all my notions. Below that is all my scraps - waiting to be cut up ala Bonnie! The top right box holds Maddie's stash - not bad for a six year old! The other three boxes hold fabric for specific projects. Underneath the table is also used for storage of magazines, books, junk without a home.

Enough for today. Now we are off to the wasteland otherwise known as the kids' rooms. Not only must we clean them but we have to switch out summer clothes for winter clothes, which have been piled in a heap in the living room since Monday! We are having a group of people from church over tomorrow night so I have to get the whole house into order. UGH! Anyone seen the cleaning fairies?

Hope all of you are having a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

War Eagle!

Today all the first graders took a field trip to the Auburn University Athletic department. Yes, yours truly was a chaparone. We got to see the women's softball field, the gymanstics department , and of course the football facilities. Lets just say that you can see where all the money in the university goes (and where the money comes from - football!). Out guide showed us one room where the football players bring their schedules at the beginning of the semester and are handed all the books they will need. We wouldn't want them to have to wait in line at the bookstore with the commoners and have to find the books for themselves! Anyway, we got a little pep talk from Coach Tuberville and Maddie got theback of her shirt signed by him. Sorry I cut of your head in the picture, Coach! The last picture is of me and Maddie during lunch time. We are all home now and getting ready for a nap! I am worn out! This trip made me even more thankful for public school teachers. They must have extra large amounts of patience!

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The Urge to Purge

This morning I was sitting on the couch watching the news when I was suddenly hit by the need to get rid of all my unused quilting books. Don't know what came over me. Maybe it was my hidden desire to get back on the FLYLADY track. Maybe it was just the desire to buy new books! Anyway... I went and listed them all on - so if you are in the need (ha-ha) for any new quilting books go check out my listings here .

Favorite Quilting Books

Yesterday on Red Shoe Ramblings, DebR made her own list of some of her favorite books of all time. It got me to thinking about my top favorite quilting books. I know we all have piles of quilting books sitting around, but do you actually ever use some (or any) of them? So - here is my challenge to you. If you could only have five books in your quilting library what would they be? Post your list here in the comments or on your own blog and just let us know where to look!

Here is my list:
1. Marsha McCloskey's Block Party
2. Quilter's Complete Guide by Fons and Porter
3. 101 Fabulous Rotary-Cut Quilts by Hopkins and Martin
4. Fast Forward your quilting by Dina Pappas
5. Scrap Frenzy by Sally Schneider

Whats' on your bookshelf?

Monday, October 24, 2005

Coffee anyone?

Yeah! I got the coffee quilt top put together. I really like this pattern. It is called "Hip to Be Square" by Busy Bee Designs. Sort of the YBR theory. Anyway, I really like how it turned out. I am going to add a skinny border out of a cream fabric and then a wider border out of a dark brown. My FIL is a large guy - probably 6'2" and several hundred pounds. So I needed to enlarge the quilt a little!

Now it is time for a short nap. Lots of crabby people around here!

More Paris fabrics

I found some more Paris fabircs while I was in Savannah. Thought I would share them before I put them away.


Saturday, October 22, 2005

Sunday Stash, a little bit early, again!

Nines is probably thinking to herself, "Of course Sarah bought more blue fabric!" I think the blue with the green dots is stretching my boundries! I got all three of these on our recent trip to Savannah.

I got the rows sewn together on my FIL's quilt but my head started pounding when I was trying to arrange the rows in a pleasing order on the floor. So that will have to wait until tomorrow - or maybe I will get hubby to do it tonight!

After I get the coffee quilt put together I hope to get the borders put on the quilt I got from my mom. Remember the beautiful one she didn't like until she saw the floral fabric I found for a border. You can check out my blog entry about it back around the end of August. After those borders get put on, I need to get to the actual quilting on a long list of quilts.

Needs to be quilted:
1. FIL's coffee quilt
2. mom's lap quilt
3. CW quilt I got from my mom
4. hot pink baby quilt
5. 30's repros trip around the world baby quilt
6. 30's repros streak of lightning baby quilt
7. blue YBR lap quilt

Now if I could just mail one of these out to each of my long-arm quilting friends on our Quilt Maverick list, my list would disappear quickly! But then my hubby might wonder why he spent his money buying me a mid-arm machine! Oh well!

Ian and hubby are ready to finish watching Batman Begins, so I guess I'll close for now.

Hope everyone is having a good weekend!

Mom's latest quilt

This is my mom's latest quilt. It is just a small lap sized quilt for the back of her couch. She found the fabrics when we went to the AQS show in Nashville in August. The main fabric was found at the very last minute as the show was closing down. We had waited until late Saturday afternoon to go to the show. We avoided the huge crowds and got some deals on some pretty fabric. We spotted this bolt of fabric as we were being herded out the door at 5 pm. Thankfully the ladies were kind enough to let us buy some! Keep in mind that my mom sewed this in a 30 foot pull behind trailer that they are living in while their new house is being built. The new house was designed by the world's most talented architect, whom I happened to be married to!

By the way, Mom, don't get excited. It's not quilted yet!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Today, we sewed...

Today when I woke up, I could tell that my body was trying to decide whether to fight the strep throat germs or just give in and get sick. Still undecided on that matter. I managed to unload and reload the dishwasher and get a pot roast started in the crock pot. Then I decided I wanted to sew for a while, at which point BOTH kids walk up and say they want to sew too. Maddie said she wanted to sew by hand, so I got her all set up. Then Ian walks up and says he wants to sew too, like Maddie. He has never sewn by hand before. Keep in mind he is not quite 4 and a half. So I get him all set up too. He plops down on the floor and concentrates on his sewing. He is TOO cute for words. I spend most of my day trying to resist the urge to kiss his sweet little face. I (the unbiased mom) think he did an extremely good job for his very first time. Between helping the kids add on blocks to their rows, I managed to finish the other twelve blocks for my FIL's quilt.

Hope everyone has a great weekend.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Sarah needs.....

I took Spamantha's advice and googled "Sarah needs" and these are my favorites:

Sarah needs to get her life back and establish herself as the person in charge!
Sarah needs your help.
Sarah needs someone who can escort her from port to port.
Sarah Needs A Cold Shower.
Sarah needs to learn how laws are made.
Sarah needs to be hooked up to a respirator.
Sarah needs to play.
Sarah needs to feel peaceful, and also needs to feel equal to someone.
Sarah needs medicines.
Sarah may need to re-assess any joint life polices she has with her husband.
Sarah needs a new home right away!
Sarah needs some straight talking advice.
Sarah needs to hear your voice to keep the link strong but she does not need to ask you any leading questions.
Sarah needs to have a stake put through her heart.

This seems to be about all I can handle today. DD is home sick with strep throat - which means DS (if not me and hubby) will come down with it soon. She is upset because she will miss a special "Farm Days" party at school tomorrow. She is doing better than last school year. In the first month of school, she had strep twice, and had it once more later in the year, along with two ear infections (which she never had as a baby).

I had hopes for sewing today but it doesn't look like that will happen! I'm off to clean up the kitchen and scrounge up something for dinner. Where is the maid and cook when I need them?

Monday, October 17, 2005

I'm Back!

I have returned from our quick trip to Savannah. It is a lovely town. Did a little touristy stuff. Hit Joann's and two quilt stores. Saturday I was brave enough to go on one of those sightseeing trolley rides that took us all around the historic parts of town. Unfortunately John Cusack (Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil) was not in town - but I did see the Mercer House where it was filmed as well as the bed and breakfast where Kevin Spacey stayed when he was in town. We also ate dinner one night at "Uncle Bubba's", the restaraunt owned by Paula Dean and her brother. Great fried shrimp and key lime pie.

I had packed my coffee fabrics, my cutting board and my sewing machine so I could sew at night. Notice what I forgot? Yep, my ruler. After being bored Friday night, while hubby was at meetings until 11 pm, I went back out Saturday morning and bought me a new ruler. So I got to sew Saturday night, while hubby was at meetings again!

My parents, sister and her kids, and my two kids all survived their four days together. My grandmother and a girl friend drove up Friday from Florida and ended up spending most of their time at the mall. They got to town around three on Friday, took a nap at the hotel, came to the house long enough for dinner. Saturday they hit the mall until about 4 and then showed up for dinner and a little bit of visiting. Sunday after church and lunch , they took a nap and came to the house around 4. By this time I was home. After evening church, they decided to go on back to the hotel and then left early this morning. I don't understand. All 5 of her great-grand children are at the house. She has spent 7 hours driving to get here. Strange but true.

So I have my house back to myself now. Peace and quiet!

Here is my contribution to Stash Sunday. I was attracted to the little letters. They are about 3/8 inches tall each. Not sure where this will end up being used.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Easily Amused!

I was just roaming around our Quilt Maverick blogs - because I don't have anything else to do. Oh - other than get my house clean before my entire family arrives in about five hours. I work best under pressure! Plus you can already see the floor in all of the rooms - not that the floor is clean. My DH said this morning on his way out the door - "You might want to clean up the dried milk on the floor where Ian spilled his cheerios!" Thanks for that little bit of helpful advise! I told my sister yesterday on the phone that I was busy cleaning house. She told me not to do that because otherwise they won't have anything to do while they are here! (Me and DH are leaving, remember?) What I am really worried about is that I will come home to find all my furniture rearranged. My sister LOVES to rearrange furniture and then she will drag my mom into it and who knows what will happen before we get home Sunday night!

Before I get back to the grindstone - I wanted to ask a simple question. Does anyone else ever try to pronounce the letters that blogger makes you type in to leave a comment for someone? Not a whole lot of vowels usually! I just left a comment for Finn and the letters were "SQNDRMIK". Hmmm. I think that would be something like "skindermick". Skindermick is, of course, milk from an undernourished cow in Ethiopia. I think I should go lay down. All the fumes from the cleaning products have obviously gone to my head!

OK, back to cleaning the bathroom. UGH!!!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Stash Sunday - an hour early

Since I am still awake at 10:45 pm, I thought I would go ahead and post my contribution to Stash Sunday. I decided to share a picture of my Paris fabrics. I started collecting these about 2 years ago. Someday I will make my daughter a quilt out of these. Not sure how to get them all to work together yet but I am sure it will come to me eventually. Maybe using black?

Anyway, the reason I collect Paris fabric is that me and hubby took a three week trip to Europe a few months before I got pregnant with DD. The last week we were there was spent in Paris. When we were on the subway my DH noticed one of the stops was called "St. Madeleine" for the cathedral located above it. He fell in love with the name Madeleine. THANKFULLY! His previous choice for a girl's name was Matilda. Nope, I don't think so. He fancies himself descended from French royalty - so it is only natural to give his daughter a French name. We did not consider the fact that the name has NINE letters in it! We evened things out by giving our son a three letter name, Ian ! She has managed to learn to spell it.

So if any of you other Quilt Mavericks out there ever see a Paris fabric not in my collection - get me a fat quarter and I'll pay you back!

Weird sewing experience

Today my local sewing center had a sewing day for Project Linus. Yes this is the same store where I am hoping to win the sewing machine.

I had told them a week or so ago that I would come in and sew for a little while. On Thursday they called to remind me and to tell me that they were ONLY using Janome machines. I could bring my own or they will have some there we can use. Since I don't own one, I guess I'll use one of theirs. So I get there and they have "kits" already cut out. I pick a machine to work on - the same model that is in the drawing. I sit down and start sewing - after having to ask several stupid questions about how to use the machine. I am sewing strips together and notice the the strips aren't the same width. I ask about this and am told "We can square everything up after we have the blocks together." This should have been my first hint that I should turn and run for the safety of my own sewing room! I make my wonky little 4 patches and take everything over to the cutting table to "square everything up". Most of my 4-patches ended up being about 10.5 inches. The alternate blocks on the other hand were all over the map. The girl that cut all the kits is very sweet, but obviously can't cut a straight line to save her life! I managed to trim the alternate squares down to 10.5 inches. Anyway, I sat down to start sewing again just as this mother/daughter team come in to join our little sewing group. They each have their own Janome machines - the kind with all the fancy stitches and stuff. They sit down directly behind me. They make a big deal about how they each brought in one completed "quilt". They held them up for us all to admire. They are tied, no batting and flannel as the backing. Totally fine with me. I keep to myself the fact that I have already donated 6 quilts and have four more sitting here waiting to be quilted. Anyway, I keep my big mouth shut.

A little while later the owner walks by and I ask her if they are going to offer training for the person who wins the machine. Before she can answer me, the mother behind me turns to me and says "Oh, I'm sorry, but we are going to win that machine!" UGH! I say "No, I think I am. I am stuffing the ballot box." The mother says "We each brought in a quilt with us today." Yeah, you know what I said next. "I have already donated six." She just turned back around and said "Well, we'd better get busy." I really don't mind if someone else wins the machine - I know it probably won't be me anyway, but to have her be snotty about it when she has an expensive embroidery machine already sitting right in front of both her AND her daughter made me a bit crabby.

I sat there a few more minutes and quickly got tired of wrestling with the crazy quilt and everyone not speaking to each other, so I gathered my belongings and came on home. I won't be doing that again unless I can bring my own fabric and have solicited promises that no crabby people will be allowed in (besides me of course!).

Sorry for being so crabby. I needed to share the story with people I know will understand! Thanks for listening!

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!

P.S. - Just did spell check before I posted this entry. My spell check wanted to replace all of my CRABBYs with CRAPPY. Could be appropriate, don't you think?

Friday, October 07, 2005

Ideas, anyone?

This is the assortment of coffee fabrics that I have collected to make my father-in-law a "coffee" quilt. My FIL and DH are both coffee snobs! And I don't drink the stuff. Love the smell though.

So now what I need is a good manly pattern. This is where you all jump in and say "I have the perfect idea for you, Sarah!" I would love to get this done in time for christmas, actually Thanksgiving. We are headed to Arkansas to see them at Thanksgiving and I would like to take it to him then.

So - everyone think hard and let me know what you come up with!

Thursday, October 06, 2005


Yeah!!! My dear friend Nina is now an official Quilt Maverick! Make sure you check out her blog called Prairie Quilts. She has an amazing sense of color. She is the person who taught me how to quilt about six years ago. She has taught me that having fun while your quilting is more important than following all the rules.

Nina, notice the orange?


I somehow managed to delete the picture of the quilt from the last post, so here it is!

Another baby quilt

Yes, another baby quilt out of thirties fabrics. They are just so bright and cheerful and hard to resist. I made this one in rows and then sewed the ends together. Does that make any sense? Then I clip open the seam so the blocks are in the right place. Bonnie's streak of lightening directions probably make a lot more sense.
Next week I get to go to Savannah Georgia with my husband for four days. He is going to an architectural conference and I am going just to escape! I have already checked online for quilt stores in the area. If anyone has any recommendations for things I should make sure I do, please let me know. I plan on sleeping late, eating lots of shrimp, hitting some fabric stores, and seeing lots of historic stuff.

I might even take along my featherweight so I can sew in the evenings. I am not much for wandering around a strange town at night by myself and hubby will be occupied till at least 10 every night. I was hoping to get several of these baby quilts quilted so I could take them with me and get the binding on, but I don't think that is going to happen. Unless, of course, the house cleaning fairies show up and whip my house into shape. My entire family is coming to babysit my kids. At first my mom and dad were coming and now my sister and her three kids are coming too! I will have a house full of company and I won't even be here! They are coming a day early so we can go see the Gee's Bend quilt show at the museum.

Speaking of housecleaning, I guess I should go do something useful! Hope everyone got to sew some today.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Another Trip...

Another weekend has zipped by. Most of Saturday was spent trying to prepare for my parents' meeting for the new Brownie troop I am a leader of. The paperwork is a bit overwhelming, but things will hopefully calm down soon. We have our first troop meeting with the girls tomorrow night. Let the fun begin!

After spend the weekend glued to the computer I let myself sit down and sew for a while this morning. The picture is of the baby quilt I finished up this morning. It is made from 30's reproduction prints. I love this fabric ! It is so cheerful. This is another quilt for the Project Linus project. When I dropped off three quilts last week at the sewing center here in town the lady there was so sweet. She "oohed" and aahed" over the quilts for the longest time. And then she told me I was going to win the machine because I was the only person turning in quilts! I told her that was my plan! They are having a sewing day at the store this coming Saturday. I might go in for a while just to get to sew without being interrupted every five minutes.

Off to run errands. Hope everyone else gets to sew some today too!