Friday, July 12, 2013

A Night In Bend Oregon

I'm spending the week in Sunriver Oregon with friends Randy, Lori, Debbie, DarLynn, Claire, and Anne, quilting at Randy's place.  Beautiful weather and wonderful times.
We're enjoying the evening in Bend listening to an instrumental band called "The Pink Martinis". 
We're having such a great time, but my friends here aren't especially fond of this picture.   Oh well.
Till later.  PJR

Monday, March 4, 2013

Back to Normal!


After a long battle with a cold/cough in Nov and Dec, I had to have some surgery.  I can now finally say "I'm feeling sooo much better".  Although the surgery had nothing to do with the cold/cough, that was just all that crud that was going around and you just can't get rid of it. 

Have you ever known that you were going to be off work for a certain amount of time for a health issue and thought to yourself, "I'm going to be able to get soooo much done!"?  NOT!  I had it in my mind that I would get those 4 quilts bound, some knitting done, some crocheting done, some wool applique done, and some reading in.  The only thing I felt like doing was the crocheting, and that didn't get done completely. 

So, now that I feel up to doing something, I have a little treat to show you. 

This is just a small project that finishes at 18" x 18". Emily's Memories, a Civil War Legacies pattern by Carol Hopkins.  She does such nice work.
A good project when you are having problems focusing on any one thing for too long.  I love, love, love the colors in this little quilt.  The fabrics just spoke to me.

These are those gorgeous fabrics.  Some are Jo Morton prints, some are Windham, and some are Marcus Bros.  Rich blacks, with that mellow gold, and then we added this khaki green for an inner border. 
 So, this project has you making four patches, but the four patch are made of the same two fabrics, but an assortment of four patches.  I stripped together two fabrics.  Pressed them all towards the darker of the two fabrics. 

Placed one on top of the other matching up the seam.  Opposites colors matching up also.  Oh, and I should mention that I had enough fabric to make 2 of each of the four patches needed for this project, so why not?  I will use them for something, or make another one of these charmers!

Now I am going to sub cut my pieces.  Hint, if the four patch is of 4 equal size squares, your sub cut is cut the same size as your first cut.  Voila, they are ready to sew together. 

 So, here's the back of my four patches.  I am what you would call "Anal" about pressing.  Yup, I'm one of those people.  I really can't help it, but I know of a few others that are worse than I am. 

 So, this is how I do my four patches when it comes to pressing.  I pull that seam open.  Note, I do not cut the fabric, nor do I cut the thread.  I just twist that seam open.  And, I do all my pressing from the front side, with great ease.  I find, for me, that works the best.  I know of a lot of other people that press from the back and it comes out perfect. 

 So, this is what it looks like from the back and the seams lay nice and flat.  The other thing it allows, is for all the four patches to come together really nice.  But, you have to make sure you are sewing all the four patches with the same colored fabric in the same position.  For instance, my gold fabric was always the one at the top when I put it under my presser foot, and the black was always on the bottom.

So, these are all the four patches that are the center of this little quilt.  So sweet!

This is what it looks like with the rows sewn together.  (From the back.)  Now it allows me to do that same little "twisty" thing when joining the four patches.  How great is that?

Here's a close up of those seams.

Now, here's the center completely pieced together.  So, when I sewed the rows together, I was able to do the same little "twisty" thing with them also. 
So, you ask me what the big deal is?  Well, I suppose for some of you, there's nothing big about this, but for me, I like to quilt these little ones on my domestic machine and they lay so nice and flat.  That makes me very happy.

Here' it is, Emily's Memories done!  Well, that is except for quilting and binding it.  Tomorrow is another day and hopefully, I will get a snow day to finish this wonderful little quilt. 
Till next time!  PJR


Monday, November 26, 2012

It's Been Too Long!

It has been too long since my last post.  I have tons of excuses, but I would bore you to death with all of them.  We'll just say what little time I did have to post, I did some things for myself.  Walked the dogs, planted perennials, decorated the porch, went on vacation and still managed to fit in a couple weekend retreats.  So, now I must get back to a disciplined schedule. 

I'll start by giving you a brief update on what's been going on. 

We had a grandson back in the spring.  His name is Logan Meyers and he is Delaney's little brother.  She's a wonderful big sister and loves him so much.  He is a little over 3 months in this picture.  He is now almost 8 months and very mobile.  It's amazing how much he looks like my husband as a baby.  So adorable.

Then in April we ordered Chickens.  Now when you order Chickens you can order the kind you want and they are sexed, but the percentage of accuracy is about 75%.  So, we ordered 5 Gold Laced Wyandotte hens, 5 Easter Egger hens (some call these Auracanas) and 1 Partridge Rock rooster.  They arrived on May 17th while I was at Quilt Market in Kansas City.  We ended up with 10 instead of 11 due to one of them dying on arrival.  By the middle of June I was on the road to pick up 3 Silky Bantams, 1 is buff, 1 white, and 1 black.  The buff colored one turned out to be a rooster.  He is the one in front on the left.  They are all so much fun to watch.                                                                                                                                       
 They are now 5 1/2 months old and are now laying eggs.  The blue/green ones are from the easter egger hens.  We average 3-4 a day.

This is one weeks worth of eggs.  They are still on the small side.  As the chickens get full grown, they're eggs will get bigger. 

This is a picture that I took a week and a half ago.  Our first double yolker and also the first large egg which is pictured above on the top right.  The one on the bottom right, we believe might be from one of our silkie chickens. 

Even Delaney enjoys the chickens.  She never seems to be afraid to go in by them and to feed them.  Their pecks at the food are not always gentle, so I'm always a little hesitant to have her do this. 

Then Delaney turned 2 at the beginning of August.  She had so much fun at her party and her favorite present from my son, Ian was her big stuffed animal, Brobie.  She loves him and has to have him sleep with her every night. 

Here is one of my outdoor projects that I worked on this summer.  I had my husband bring it up to the house from out in back of the property.  We painted it Chevy Orange, then planted a ton of plants in it.  This picture was taken at the beginning of the summer, so by the end of the summer the plants really kind of took over the whole thing.  It's one of my favorite planters. 

So much for getting any quilting done over that time.  Well, I did get some done, but not nearly as much as I hoped for.  I think most of you know what that's like.  It's kind of like taking 5 to 6 projects on a weekend retreat and only working on 2 of them.  We all have very high expectations. 

My next post I will show you the 9 new designs we took to Expo in September.  And a couple of things that I'm in the middle of making. 

Till next time!  PJR

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Another great Lori Smith Design

I just finished this top last Friday and I have to say, it makes me happy!
The center is wool applique' on cotton. The rest of the quilt is also cotton.
I left for Kansas City yesterday for Market, so I brought this quilt with to show my friend Randy. I going to teach her how to use wool on cotton.
I'll post later with lots more updates. We're going to be cruising around KC to all the quilt shops in thy e area. That will be about 10 - 12 shops. Should be a fun filled day.
Till later. pjr

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Where Did The Time Go?

Hi All,

I missed posting anything in January and here it is the last day of February and I'm finally getting around to it.  I was a little/a lot under the weather in January with a flu bug then just when I started feeling better, I came down with this sinus crap going around.  Hmmm, not sure who's out to get me!  You find out real fast that life doesn't stop just because you do.  Work just kept piling up and it took me a good amount of time to trudge through it. 

Anyways, I did manage to fit in a couple retreats.  The first one was the third weekend in January (where I came down with the flu), but managed to stay the entire weekend and still managed to have fun. 

These are just some of the photo's I took from that weekend.  The staff at Covenant Harbor was so welcoming.  They even put up a sign for us. 
We had a couple of projects planned for the weekend.  One of them was making mittens from wool sweaters.  This was just one of the pairs.  They were so much fun!  And thanks to Micki, she provided a basketful of felted sweaters. 

Here is the group that worked on the mitten project.  They were so proud of themselves!  Each and every pair turned out so cute.

Next we had a bit of a race doing that "Super Fast Jelly Roll" quilt.  Here's Bonnie's made from Homespun fabrics.  You ask, where do you find homespuns cut into Jelly Rolls?  Well, we cut them at the shop.  They are great.  She choose to join her strips on the bias.   Isn't it wonderful!

This is Martha's JR quilt.  Well, I'm bad, I can't remember what line this is from, but I believe it's a 3 Sister's line.  Way to go Martha!  Gotta love it.

Here is Sandy's JR quilt made from Kansas Troubles fabrics.  How great is that.  All of them turned out splendid and everyone seem to really enjoy doing the project. 


I just have to throw this in there.  We've been on a little bit of a kick for the last few years or so.  You take an antique Shawnee planter and either put a felted ball in it or fill a pouch with sand, place it in the planter, then cover it with wool and glue in place.  Voila!  You have a vintage pincushion.  One of these is not a Shawnee, but antique.  Cute!

Here are some of quilts that the ladies worked on over the weekend.

This is Marge with her "Stone Soup" quilt.  She made is a bit bigger than the actual pattern.

This is Debbie's "Pennies From Heaven".  It's almost done here.  The picture doesn't do it justice.  The wool and embellishing is to die for.

And DarLynn worked on a Schnibbles pattern.  Actually, it's a revision that Carrie Nelson put on her blog, called "Tiny Town".  Oh Fun!

This is Randy's quilt that she made with toile fabric from Paris.  We all drooled over this quilt.  And the quilting was done by Marge and is absolutely wonderful.

This is "Dipped in Chocolate" and I believe it's Cathy's quilt.  I made the same one, but my border is darker, so I know it's not mine.  We did a block exchange to make this quilt.  They are little four-patches that finish at 1 1/2" each.  Oh fun!

I'm not sure who made this quilt, but I just loved it.  Very scrappy!  Whoever the owner is, please let me know.  I need to give credit, where it's due.


Here's Rose's Farmer's Wife Quilt.  She just finished it and I know she was thrilled with how it turned out.  We started this 2 years ago.  Way to go Rose!

This is my "Heirloom Stitches" quilt.  We did this last year as a Block of the Month.  It's made with cotton fabrics, but the applique is wool.  DarLynn helped me with this immensely.  I owe her big time.  

Lastly, this is Delaney after I got home from the retreat.  She thinks that my Tutto Tote is not for my machine, but for grandpa to pull her around in.  She actually sits in it while he pulls her.  Delaney's awaiting a little brother or sister in less than a month now.  We are all getting very excited. 

I'll post pictures from the retreat I went on last weekend soon, but my husband and I are off to Texas tomorrow to see our son.

Till Later, PJR

Monday, December 26, 2011

My Old Fashioned Santa!

Well, I have an interesting story about my Santa.  He's the one in front of my trees on my porch.

I made him about 18-20 years ago, a very long process that has to be done in steps over a few weeks.  So, when they say patience is a virtue, they are so right.

Notice he isn't in this picture!

So, a couple weeks ago, one of my employees noticed a lady leaving the shop, she did not purchase anything, which really shouldn't matter, but she had her jacket on when she walked out the door and as she was walking towards her car, she had her jacket off, under her arm, with something in it.  Diane, my employee, walked over to the door and noticed this, but at first she thought she had a bolt of fabric.  I know what you're thinking.  Quilters are honest people.  Yes, that's was I always think, but I'm always amazed when things like this happen.  Diane noticed a smidgen of red sticking out from her jacket.  She looked down, and yes, the Santa was missing.  Then she noticed that my Santa was missing.  Yes, gone! 

Well, then she called me over right away, explained the situation and away I went.  Out to her car.  This lady was acting very fidgety, trying to cover what it was in her passenger seat but, I noticed a bit of his coat prior to her covering him, that confirmed it.  I asked her to bring her window down and she finally put it down about 4".  I politely asked her to remove her jacket so that I could see what was under it.  She asked, "Why?", then I explained that he was missing and that my employee saw her jacket covering him while she walked to her car.  She got very anxious then and said, "I don't have to.".  Well, I felt very angry then, that someone would just up and take something that didn't belong to them. 

She proceeded to put back her car up as I was asking her to please show me what it was under her jacket.  She then proceeded to put her car in drive.  So, I decided to stand in front of her car.  Probably not the most intelligent thing I've ever done!  But, I really thought that she would just give him up.  Well, with me standing in front of her car, she just put it in reverse, so then I kept walking along side her passenger side.  I was talking to her the whole time, explaining to her that it wasn't a very good idea to leave and that I had her license plate numbers, the make and model of her car.   So, she had to stop to put her car in drive, and at that point, for some weird reason, I decided that holding on to her side mirror might encourage her to stop.  Or, maybe I could hold her car back.  NOT!  She took off down the driveway. 

I ran in and wrote down her license number and then the adrenaline kicked in.  My mouth dried up and I started to shake.  I couldn't even punch 911.  I've never had this happen to me before.  I had to ask Diane to do it for me.  After some explaining to the dispatcher, how big, what he looked like, and other fun stuff, they sent out a deputy sheriff, actually 2 riding together. 

They arrived and one came in while the other one walked down to out mail box.  He came walking up with my Santa.  We came to the conclusion that she drove back and threw him out the window.  

We asked the two deputy sheriffs if the call they received to this sounded kind of odd.  They said the call came in as, "Please respond to 5130 E US Hwy 14 in regards to a stolen Santa off the porch."  He explained that it sounded "interesting". 

So, as it turned out, they went to her home and after much questioning and telling her that there were two of us that saw the Santa, she finally admitted to taking him.  I have to add here that this lady was around 60 and drove a Cadillac.  She did not look like someone that would do something like that.  I know we shouldn't stereotype people, but really, I'm sure she could've bought her own Santa.


The way it ended up was that I didn't have any charges brought up against her, which my husband said that I should have, but she is not allowed back on our property or she could be arrested for trespassing.  My Santa is now back home, a little damage to his beard, but overall, he looks pretty good.

Moral of the story, you just can't trust everybody!

Till next time!  PJR

Monday, December 12, 2011

Ah, A Retreat!

I spent the weekend before last at a place called Covenant Harbor.  It's in Lake Geneva.  A wonderful place for a quilting retreat.  My friend Marge was one of the organizers.  They did a fantastic job.  I have lots of pictures, but I'll try to keep it brief.

We had a ton of fun.  This is Bonnie, she went around stealing desserts.  It was all in fun, really! 

Isn't this adorable?  This is Peggy's pincushion.  She made it. 

And this is Char's pumpkin pincushion.  Very cute!

This is a pincushion that I started a year ago and finally finished it.  I gave it to DarLynn for her birthday that weekend.  And the MidNite was a "just in case" I couldn't sleep.  I have many of those nights.  The good thing was, I slept great while there.

This is my Farmer's Wife quilt.  I finished the blocks last January, but it's taken me this long to get the borders on.  And, as it turned out, I was short one of my second border strips.  So, I had to take it home unfinished.

This is a quilt that I finished the top at the last retreat to Fern Hill I went to at the end of September.  I brought it with to get the binding on.  It's one of Delaney's Christmas presents.  It has orange minkee on the back.

This is my sister, Cathy's quilt.  We did a block exchange a few years ago and the quilt took 182 blocks, so, we named it our "182 Block Quilt".  Kind of fitting!  Her border, sashing, and cornerstones are great!

At the retreat, they had a project for those who wanted to do it.  It was a quilt made with a Jelly Roll.  This pattern is all over the internet, and I'm sure you've seen it, but if not, here is the link.  This one to the left is my sister, Connie's quilt.  There were quite a few of the women doing this, so they decided to make it a competition.  My friend, Leanne won.  She made it (just the inner quilt) in 1 hr 18 min. 

Here' Micki's Jelly Roll quilt.  She was the second one done.  She did hers from a Moda line called "Solphie".  Very cute!

This is my sister, Rose's Jelly Roll quilt.  She made hers from one of the Minnick and Simpson lines. 

This is my sister, Cathy's "Dipped In Chocolate" quilt.  We did a block exchange for this a few years ago.  800 tiny little four-patches.  She got hers finished a while back.  I'm just now getting mine put together.  It is an awesome quilt. 

This is Debbie's quilt, "Heirloom Stitches", a Lori Smith design.  We did this last year as a "Block of the Month".  Instead of doing it up all in cotton, we did the applique in wool.  Isn't it a great quilt?

This is the center of Debbie's quilt.  "Pennies From Heaven" by Gretchen Gibbons.  We are going to be doing this as a "Block of the Month" starting up in February, hopefully.  This is also a wool on cotton quilt.  This picture does not do it justice.  It is absolutely gorgeous!

Oh, and we ate good too.  These are just a few of the homemade items that the women brought in to share.  Peanut clusters, nut mix, and pretzel, rolo, pecans.  Mmmm, good! 
 I can't wait to go back there.  Actually, I'm hosting a retreat there next month.  I know, I'm a little spoiled.  If anyone is interested, please email or call me.  We still have openings!

Till Later, PJR