Family and (new) friends.

We had a very happy Easter Sunday with the family in Rockford!

I could bore you with my 24 photos of the adorable grandchildren but instead I just chose three….

Julia organized an Easter egg hunt in her very tidy back yard. Benjamin and Ruby waited patiently, clutching their baskets.

DSC07794 Ruby picked the eggs up as carefully as if they were real ones.

DSC07799 There was nothing inside any of the eggs but I guess if you don’t know any better then you are easily pleased?!!

We went on a walk around the neighborhood. It felt so good to be outside AND warm. Here is Benjamin encouraging his grandfather after the long trek…

DSC07811 Fun times!

Then yesterday I made the short trip to Sandwich to meet the Fair City Quilters.

DSC07814 Lisa came with me and handled sales after my Language of Flowers talk,

DSC07816 while the ladies got a little more up close and personal with the quilts!

DSC07817 And look what I came home with…

DSC07823

A dozen fresh real Free Range eggs!

Those quilters in Sandwich are a lovely bunch but I sure hope they get a volunteer to be secretary soon…

 

I’m going to be traveling further afield and making more new friends before the end of the year. Here’s a hint…

DSC07824

Find out the details at the Sew Many Places web site. I’ll be teaching a hand work project that we can work on sitting on deck in the sunshine… Sound like an adventure? There’s still some space left. I’m thinking it would make a fantastic early Christmas present (if you need an excuse!).  I’ll be posting more about it in the next few days.

Half Way Through April Already!!

It’s been too long since I caught up… I was going to get to it and then I got a cold… The cold is now gone and I’ve run out of excuses…

So here goes!

The Wooly Bee in Batavia (postponed from February) was a lot of fun. The ladies produced a list of embellishment stitches they wanted to brush up on and we worked our way throughout them… from drizzle stitches to turkey work, with all sorts of challenges in between.

Some of them kept talking while they had their pictures taken,

DSC07662 and some posed ever so nicely.

DSC07664 DSC07665 The ladies treated me very well. I hope I will be seeing them again before too long.

The segments on QATV series 1300 are continuing to be aired. Here I am making yo-yos while Pokey watches carefully.

DSC07675

 

Then I was off to Morris to the Pieces From the Heart Quilt Guild. It was easy to find my way south to Morris but once there…? I’m not sure who decided that pretty street signs were the way to go but they are impossible to read while keeping up with the flow of traffic… After a while I just turned right and lo and behold I’d chosen the right street! NO judgement involved I assure you.

The ladies gathered ready to listen(?),

DSC07679 I set my goodies out,

DSC07680 and we all learnt a  little about The Language of Flowers.

Here are the quilters examining the quilts after my talk.

DSC07682 There was some colorful show and tell to enjoy.

DSC07692 Getting home was easy peasy! I had a lovely note from the program chair afterwards. The quilts are all now relaxing on a spare bed before I take them to Sandwich on Monday!

 

Next up was Riverwalk‘s philanthropy sew-in. I took a few minutes off from stitching pillowcase seams to snap a few pictures. This is Sandy, smiling at her machine.

DSC07746 We completed well over 100 pillowcases for donation. Here are just a few.

DSC07749 PAQA was the next day. As usual there was lots to inspire and instruct. Roberta had taken a fancy to my table runner design at the retreat and made a similar one in her own color palette.

DSC07754

 

Meanwhile, back at home I have been working on all sorts of things that I have to keep to myself at the moment. It is very difficult for me to keep my own secrets secret. If you tell me yours that is one thing, but mine… Oh well. For now this will have to suffice to show you that my sewing machine has been humming and my rotary cutter trimming…

DSC07756

 

I entered my quilt The Long Winter in a quilt show last night, 45 minutes before the deadline… but I think Spring is finally here!

DSC07785

The daffodils survived the snow last Monday. A promise of things to come?

Happy Easter!

(Almost) All is revealed.

So now I can reveal what I have been working on for the last few weeks. I was asked to tape three new segments for the 1400 series of Quilting Arts TV and after a couple of conversations and a few e-mails back and forth we had a plan! I have been devising some cute projects and stitching lots of step outs, hoping it would all be alright on the night…

Tuesday morning found me in make-up.

DSC07492 I always forget how grey my hair is until I see a picture like that one.

Cheryl was up first so I was able to relax and watch her on the screen. Here she is enjoying some Sharpie fun with Susan, the new host of QATV.

DSC07496 My trays were looked over and organized. I had three trays this time.

DSC07499 DSC07500 DSC07501 Cheryl’s segments all done it was time for lunch. Then, after all the waiting, all of a sudden I was on… Things happen so quickly but we did remember to snap a few pics on set.

Here we are sitting together, very graciously, on the sofa. My machine quilting samples are set up in the front.

DSC07512Cheryl went back to the green room and took this one of me waiting to be joined by Susan. That’s a great blouse from dream on. (thanks Bridget!)

DSC07517 The segment was all about quilting with the walking foot. Here I am in action at the machine..

DSC07525 We changed our clothes between each segment. That makes for a lot of work for the sound guy, finding somewhere safe for the microphone each time.

DSC07531 Susan and I were all smiles before the second segment.

DSC07533 Here’s my view from behind the table.

DSC07535 And here we are in action. I made paper foundation pieced blocks for a pin quilt.

DSC07544 Vivika joined us for a photograph before my third project. Looking great?

DSC07549 And here I am with my clamshell paper pieces for an english paper piecing segment.

DSC07555 My pillows looked good on this white chair!

DSC07565And that was that! Cheryl had some more taping to do so I learnt lots watching her at work. Meanwhile it snowed!

DSC07595

The little bit of the white stuff was not enough to deter us from a final dinner out with the gang. We made a quick stop in at the studio on Wednesday morning, just to discuss a few details for future adventures…

The drive home was uneventful with Cheryl at the wheel. No sleeping this time as we shared our experiences and discussed our plans. There’ll be no slowing down any time soon!

Off, out and away?

I am starting in a very good place today…

Benjamin is now 4! He celebrated in style with a dynamic dinosaur party. At four years of age Benjamin is a pro at having his photograph taken.

DSC07443 Ruby kept herself busy with her puppy…

DSC07458 It all went quiet for cake.

DSC07460 Fun, fun, fun!

Then it was home to pack.

Sophisticated pale pink no-chip manicure…

DSC07487Bags ready…

DSC07461and a 4.30 AM start to pick up Cheryl

Yes, we were on the road to Cleveland for Quilting Arts TV!!

DSC07486

We are actually taping our segments today but we got to spend the afternoon yesterday hanging out in the green room,

DSC07464and playing with the Berninas under Jeannne’s expert eye!

DSC07471

 

 

After a good night’s sleep we were up at a slightly more decent hour this morning. The geese were making a lot of noise as the sun rose over the frozen pond next to the hotel.

DSC07483 It being spring (!?), there was ice on the car wind shield…

DSC07484

But now we are here again and ready to go!!

Next up makeup, hair and clothes change. It’s sure to be a great day…

A quick project for the grandchildren.

I’ve had a busy time doing all sorts of things that will be revealed next week…

However Benjamin was 4 on Tuesday and his birthday party is tomorrow. I have not made him a new quilt but I did make some quick pillowcases today.

DSC07441Dinosaurs for Benjamin and bunnies for Ruby. I used the pillowcase instructions from American Patchwork and Quilting. Burrito style with no exposed seams, quick and easy. Super cute!!

In case you were thinking that I am not a very generous grandma… there will be a few presents inside the cases…