Tuesday, October 31, 2017

All Saint's Eve

Can you believe this???
A PTA fundraiser brought in $50,000 for our elementary school.
To celebrate,..the entire school could wear their costumes today to school.
The second and third graders showed up downstairs this morning wearing......
 Granddaddy's woolen sports jackets.
The very ones that were in Lynsey's closet because I could not bear to look at them, yet.
They went to school today as "Granddaddy"!!!
And, it was OK!
Tonight was a different story.
TBTG Their mother came to take them Trick or Treating.
 Sometimes I think that this is their true nature...ha ha
The seventh grader filled up his pillowcase, with candy??????
The other two  made me close my eyes while they hid their candy from Grandma.
 Niece, Alexis saved the day.  I used to love Halloween until my dear man died.
Now I am so grateful for Alexis .  She handed out the candy while my sister and I chatted inside...all warm and toasty.
 Awesome red lights with batteries...97 cents last year at the end of Christmas sales.
 And, the latest patch...This will be one awesome quilt..
with the best story ever,
More choices...all wrong.
Now looking for a light orange solid...kinda...
 All this is why the design wall is so important.
 So thought this solid orange would be the bingo...alas..too dark.

The end of October miracles:
The X-box controller that has been missing for a year and a half has been found right in front of our eyes and noses, in the kitchen hutch...just pushed toward the back.  Evan  made me apologize. It was not only my fault, but I had had to buy a $50 replacement last year.

The new flip phone that has been missing for 1.5 months has been found right beside me at my computer, in my little sewing machine drawer...pushed toward the back.
Now, just missing is the alarm clock bought for Evan so he could get himself up in the morning.
Lost for 6 months, hidden by me for the birthday surprise in June...
and of course two I-pads, taken for mis-behavior....never to have been seen again.
Probably under my fabric stashes.

All is a relief and not too bad for one week...not even looking

I am now full of Halloween candy and sipping red wine..in the peace and quiet of night.
The tooth fairy is about to  make her final visit to Evan as his very last baby tooth came out tonight.
Soon...the raging hormones of adolescence arrive..
Poor Grandma, poor Evan and poor world.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Roll on Stories, Roll on...

Back to the stories in quilts...This quilt is soooo loved by the family,
I will preserve it.
I am a big fan of
Nadia...at Multicolored Pieces
She is repairing her old quilt with hand made art.
I can only Wonder-Under and machine quilt.
These orphan blocks are from a shirt of my son's when he was 18.
I made a quilt of them for him, but......long lost..
The pieces are ironed on...Will secure them later.
Looking soon for other red and white memories for the more deteriorated parts.
It is really all about love.
Maybe a flannel part of my husband's shirts is left..??.
Maybe a piece from the children's clothing??
Getting excited.

My favorite part of quilting...choosing the colors.
Starting the border process now.for this top...may just need a solid.?
The quilt needs a border because the quilt is too small without it.
Lynsey goes to Girls on the Run...twice a week.  She loves it.
Hoping for a donut on the way home,...
She goes in by herself for one donut and a glass of water.
Feeling so grown up and important.
Not to worry,
My van is right by the door.
Remember Grandma  has a cane to beat folks off...
 The only homework responsible child...the girl amongst two boys.
She has to get this homework done..even while enjoying her Halloween treat.
This grandma is putting away all her Halloween fabric.
The house is a mess and the conventional wisdom is that Halloween is soon over.
Is this the year for a Thanksgiving quilt?
Absolutely NOT>..so away that goes too...

It is time for Christmas sewing
TBTG I did teacher presents while I was recuperating.
Should I insist on the 7,8 and 12 year old making their own presents this year?
Or should I just chill...?
The seven year old is almost done...but...the others have big, bad homework.
Thank goodness for my blog...so I can think out loud.
Thank goodness for the delete button, so you all have a choice..😎😎.
Thank goodness for all of you..

Sunday, October 29, 2017

My mind as I knew it...

Here we go...finished backing...talk about low volume  ...or maybe it is the photographer??

And am I happy....Of course..I am thrilled to have incorporated so much into this piece and have it all work.. Then comes the disclaimer from the fabric addict's brain.
The blue 1.5 inch border fabric is now all gone...as is the flowered 5 inch border.
 I know the other pink works,it is in the same line...the freaky part is...
OMG the fabric is gone..
.I had better order more...what if I cannot find more???
And that takes over..

I have to do a lot of self-talk to tell the addict that there is an entire warehouse of fabric right under this roof...and not to worry..there is more fabric, maybe not that..and anyway,
 I am keeping this piece, so I can enjoy looking at it.right here.

My mind then goes to Christmas...Why in the world are you working on this when Christmas is almost here and you have no special something for your daughter  who does everything for you???
No, Mrs. O"Quilts...you are relaxing and you really enjoyed working on this.
It is still only October.
Your daughter would be so happy not get so many whiny texts...
She will be happy to know you are relaxed...but still....
No wonder I need so many naps.
And the humming!!!!
My three days of studio cleaning were undone in a day or two.
Missing.... one Xbox remote (6 months gone)
One new Verizon phone (one month gone)
One alarm clock for a present (8 months gone)
I have hidden money to be found.
A million projects to be found.

Sitting outside after many naps, I am finishing my book and freezing.
It is 50 degrees...very cold for Charlotte..but I am working on toughness.
I grab the warmest quilt I have.
But, it is not warm anymore.
The top is over 100 years old
I have put wool inside and tied it with yarn...having made a special label telling its story
It was the family favorite quilt, now a reminder that nothing lasts forever.

All the whites have deteriorated...they look like they came from underwear anyway, so they had plenty of wear before the quilt
In the past four years that I put this $15 top into a quilt, it has been used as a sleeping bag, a recliner cuddler, a tent, a children's movie cover, etc
It is in shreds.  I took it outside anyway, holes and all.
I can put my finger through all the white pinstriped boxer fabric.
Zoe wonders why I fret???
She also hopes I have a treat hidden inside.

As I continue to heal in many ways, I look up at the huge pine trees in my yard..well over 100 feet tall.  I always remind myself that they are older than I am. The stones I walk on are older than I am (John O'Donohue)
  If there is a God, it is not me...for sure, it is not me...
Philosophy aside, I need another nap.
I am accepting that I need naps.
I am coming to love them.
Starting already on another finish...next post
But, it is not for Christmas......
Why...not...Grandma O'Quilts....Why not/??

Saturday, October 28, 2017

For the Love of Stories

Getting into the fall spirit.
The  live Christmas wreath from last year at Trader Joe's
I found it tossed in the yard.
I save everything!!!!
I added fake flowers for $4...with my 60% off coupon from Michaels.
A daytime picture would be nicer, but impetuous me.....does the night owl thing.
In making a quilt, the idea and the fabric one starts with is often not the end product.
I was so set in sacrificing  my 30's green fabric...now it looks like it will be the binding instead.
The back turned out a bit bluer than I had planned, so using my reproduction blue fabric
This quilt will defintly be a two sided story in its own right.

 I come from a family that tells stories.
My mother certainly did in her poetry.
My grandmother and my brother were/are great story tellers.
Guess I do too....
I married a story teller from a family of story tellers.
This quilt has a story...from the lady I knew from the estate sale to the friend of my aunt's with the flower garden blocks.  I am adding my own fabric story to it.
This quilt has to stew over night so I can be sure.

Tomorrow I will need to cover some plants...
Monday morning should be 31 degrees.
The true changing of the foliage.
Nature's story, again.

My therapist suggested that I hum to reduce panic and anxiety.
He said it was like the monks, ".om"
It makes the diaphragm vibrate, reducing stress
I sat on the deck today reading.
I decided to hummmmm
Deep  and loud.
Zoe joined in.
She put that head of hers up...and howled!!!!
Ha ha, that is Zoe's story.

Friday, October 27, 2017

It is a Process, they say.....a Process

A Story, or two.
Vintage top finished
 In 1974, Great Aunt Billie, introduced me to her best friend, living in Glendale, Arizona.
She was a brilliant quilter.
She gave me parts of an unfinished, hand pieced,
 Grandmother Flower Garden quilt top.
I eventually made a lap quilt from it
What to do with the remnants?? (found while cleaning my sewing room..SR)
Since they are in the same era as what I am working on now, I will incorporate those pieces into the backing of this table quilt..
Here, I have just placed them on the top for dimensions ...
 In the box with the rest of the scraps from a recent quilter's estate sale,
were these two vintage fabrics.  The one on the right is the fabric in the quilt.
I think that the one on the left is vintage as well..but from a later time.
Turning 70 soon, and my visits to two already...quilter estate sales is slowly shifting my focus to using some of the fabric I love and collect.  IMHO the green on the right is collectible.
It came with a piece of newspaper 1939.
My tendency is to save it...cuz it is so rare and special.
Instead, I am going to use it on the back of this piece that I will keep myself..
Stay tuned..

Today was the day that school was closed.  It had been on all my calendars for weeks and weeks.
Last night we celebrated with a movie, staying up late and exciting plans for today..
This included me sleeping in and the darlings on the computer

Alas...old Grandma O'Quilts had  made an error.
The triangle on the school site was "end of quarter" not "teacher work day".
It seems that we were all destined for a mental health day.
It also seems that I was the only one who did not know this.
Even the 7 year old knew that there was not only school, but spelling tests as well.
...How delightful to have put one over on Grandma!!

It is the crazy hour...Of course I blog at the crazy hour....
All the pit bulls and kitty cats are fast asleep.
This week I have eaten out with friends 3 different times.
I have been to two quilting groups and one therapist.
I have spent 2 hours at the middle school advocating for the 7th grader for his 504 plan
And I have had to listen to pre-adolescent angst and bad humor.

I have had ..ha ha ha ha...one mental health day!!!

Yet at this hour, I am lonely and a bit frightened....a generalized fear.
An unsettling.
It is because my love is gone.
Nothing takes the place of my dear man, Mr. O'Quilts.
I will never get over his dying and his death.
He was my everything.

According to my nurse friend, Peggy, it is normal for me to be so exhausted with all the surgeries I have been through in 13 months. and all the other things.
Why I need reminding of this is beyond me.
However, I have made one big decision.

In December, I will turn 70.

I have decided to celebrate that..
Many folks do not get the chance to be 70...This lady is just plain going to have fun!!
No whining allowed. 

I am getting some of my interests/energy back. 
 Today I made a fall wreath for the door.
I sewed.
I have been cooking Susan Branch's broth and chicken soup.
and everyday I make myself climb the stairs in my house once.
My recently purchased Halloween candy is safe at my sister's house.
My nephew came to collect it tonight😡
Tomorrow will bring a cuddle on the porch wrapped in a quilt, and...
a good read.
If I am lucky, I will finish the backing for this quilt.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

A Happy Day

My darling grands....working on Halloween treats.
We used candy melts for the first time ever...and pretzel sticks and jumbo marshmallows.
Too much fun.
The yummiest was the mix of pretzel saltiness with sugar candy..yummmm

Today my XDIL came over to do a baby reveal for her children.
There will be a new sibling who will live with her and her new husband...in March.
Someone here was so disappointed.  Seven year old Dylan had said that they needed 3 boys to fight his sister Lynsey..Poor Dylan.
Tonight at Charlotte's Modern Quilt Guild
Another sample sale....of course since it is a benefit....
 Wish the photos were better...should have waited until tomorrow..
But, it is that time of night and I want to concentrate on fabric happy.

 Since age 13, buying, touching, smelling and loving...
Oh, yes..and using fabric has made my heart beat.
A great day today has me all worked up about starting.
like...9 new quilts...my brain will not stop...
Maybe trying a new ruler...
Maybe cutting my stash.
I have 3 Halloween quilt ideas...plus............

Sunday, October 22, 2017

The Old and the New, or...the New and the Old

I certainly wish I could show you a clean and tidy sewing room...
Alas, I can only show you a neat and tidy new ironing board cover.
 Cats...from IKEA

The old and dirty one...polka dots...also from IKEA
IKEA fabric is so wide and so nice.
I was looking at the leftover vintage pieces from the table topper I showed the last post.
 Finding this piece was a thrill...I thought I might have enough for the backing...
When I opened it, it was a dress!!!  OMG..
 Today was so lovely...Carolina Blue with Cumulus clouds.
I read outside...did some errands...made a lemon cake for tomorrows Sit and Sew..
Every day now, I climb the stairs at least once.  I have not done that in at least 6 years.
It is tough, but it gives me hope.
My grands are growing up..Evan made fruit smoothies after the little ones went to bed.
Peace in this valley today

Saturday, October 21, 2017

What Makes my Sewing Room Scary??

Another mess....love....

And of course...indecision....
Whatever pattern should I choose????????

Friday, October 20, 2017

The O'Quilts Goings on...

Grandma O'Quilts says "Hello"!!!!
 Every year, I post this same wall hanging..just because...
And two of the bags I made for the grands.....long outgrown...
My son appears here, front and center....
I always liked this picture as  he is quiet and stands still..lol
It was an Irish dance photo on the cover that year of the Mecklenburg county 6th grade curriculum.
 Still looking around...a Mola I had bought in Panama, back in the day.
Cats of course!!  The San Blas Indians do reverse applique.
 My WIP....or works in progress...
Last winter, I went to my first quilter estate sale.
I found this partially hand pieced top..with all the fixings.
Way too much for me to address....by hand... ....
Here is the beginning of a table topper..
I cut away what was finished, stabilized the bias edges.
Now to put a border on with the vintage fabric that came with the piece.
I just love creating with someone else's unfinished work.

Won't this look nice on the porch table with my wedding Rose Chintz?
My favorite of Johnson Brothers....
Sad to see it on ebay at a fraction of the price..

Chatty little notes from the O'Quilt's home...
The darlings went 3 hours tonight to Black Belt Boot Camp!!
Wahoo..they are really in shape.
Off to their cousins' house,exhausted after that...
Manana I will stay home to supervise the replacement of our sump pump.
$$$$$   Oh, well...Gotta have the waste go up the hill...just have to!!!

Stunning days to read outside in Carolina blue skies.
Thanks to Muggs, I have several exciting books to start.
I can see more improvement in my hip situation.
Today, I climbed my stairs...twice!!!
Walked around Trader Joe's
Starting to eat lunches out again with friends..
Still organizing my sewing room..
A forever job.