September OMG Complete

I have finished my #Trending quilt top. I was planning a weekend of selfish sewing, finishing the last two blocks. Instead, I did tons of paperwork, weeded the gardens with the family, and did general housekeeping chores. I did not even go downstairs at all. That left me scrambling and pushing hard, despite how I was physically feeling, to finish these. But they are done!

Here is the second to last block, the cheetah. This came out a bit wonky, but you won't notice once it's quilted.

And the final block, a llama. The odd angles in this block were difficult and I just did my best to get it done last evening.

Here is the bulk of the top. I will add the borders today. I have purchased backing fabric, so depending on how I'm feeling, I may assemble that as well. I have a quilting design picked out, so as soon as my machine has a free moment, this will get quilted.

Here are the quilts I worked on over the past week.

Haley's pillow front, quilted with A Fishy Tail (to match I quilt I did earlier this year).

Deb's, quilted with Opal. 

I don't usually crawl under the machine, but maybe I should more often. Doesn't this look cool? You can also see what a fantastic job she does with her piecing.

Annie's Deco quilt, quilted with Behold in a larger scale.

A round robin quilt some of my fellow guild mates made, quilted with Cassava. This one will go to one of the two local organizations whose fundraising we support each year.

And the beginnings of Jeri's quilt, quilted with Capri. This is one intense design. It has tons of backtracking and is really detailed. I am running my machine super slow to help maintain accuracy. Each 5.5" row of pattern takes about half an hour to stitch. I'm hoping I can finish today, but fully expecting it to run into tomorrow.

Moving over to my garden, I replanted my AeroGarden a week and a half ago, and after only five days my lettuce had sprouted! It may have been before that, but that is when I first checked.

I'm not sure who I am--I found another unit on eBay and won that for a very reasonable price (less than half of retail!!), especially since it's new in the box and includes the seed starting tray too. I'm planning to grow herbs for the chickens over the winter and then start some seeds for our outdoor garden when the time comes. Never dreamed I'd be growing plants to feed chickens!!

Here are our not-so-little-anymore chickens this week. Their soft little bird noises are starting to turn into louder clucks. 

We gave them part of a watermelon rind last week for the first time. It took a while for them to not be scared of it. Once one was brave enough to grab a piece of it, they all started chasing her, trying to steal it, instead of getting their own pieces. My husband gave them another chunk each of the next two days. Based on the condition of the coop, I think we need to give it to them a little less frequently. 😳

They are pretty scared of most noises and people, but they always come running when they see my daughter approaching them. This is her shoulder on the bottom right of the photo.

They are also putting themselves to bed each night now. Remember how they pecked foam insulation from inside their coop? They figured out how to reach the foam that was up high in the coop. LOL. All of it has now been replaced or reinstalled with covers. It's been pretty cold at night now, so hopefully they leave the stuff alone so that they can stay warm in there. This continues to be such a learning experience.

Speaking of learning experiences, one of my paperwork tasks was to list out how much my daughter's college tuition costs. She attended one and a half years of community college, until she had exhausted her course options. She will have 2.5 years at a state university. She lives at home to save money since both institutions are in town. I was totally shocked to see that tuition only (no books, living expenses, etc.) will total about $40,000! All but $1000 (thanks to NF Midwest for that award) of that will be paid by our family through either direct payment or student loans. We do not qualify for need-based aid. 

As if that wasn't sobering enough, my husband and I looked up how much each of our colleges cost now. His was around $53,000/year now (don't know what it cost when he went). Mine now costs around $50,000/year. When I attended, it was about $13,000/year, including room and board. My college was known for its teaching program. I cannot even imagine leaving college, owing $200,000, to be a teacher who makes maybe $45,000 a year. How would you ever pay that off? My parents were both teachers and we did not qualify for financial aid back then either. The system is broken.

I truly do not know what we will do when it's my son's turn for school. He's considering a college that is too far away to commute, which means the cost will double. Yep, room and board costs the same as tuition for a state university. So at least $80,000 if he goes away all four years. And the financial aid system says I can pay that and more out of pocket. On what planet do they reside? 

I think I'm gonna go have Tylenol for breakfast. 😬 And then go count my blessings. I'm okay, really. It's just shocking to think of that amount of money. I actually need the Tylenol because I overdid the exercising yesterday and then had to have an MRI that put everything out of whack and gave me a headache due to the awkward position they had me in. I need the headache to dull a little more so I can work today.

I'll be back next week with a list of my projects and my choice for October's OMG. Also--how is it almost October already!!!???  If you read all the way to the end, thanks! You rock!

Linking with My Quilt Infatuation.


  1. Are you sure that's a cheetah? He doesn't look mean enough! LOL That quilt is adorable. Love the shot from under the quilt. So cool. Yes, college costs are outrageous. No wonder you need some Tylenol.

  2. Those blocks are wonderful, well done! I love your projects.

  3. Way to push to the finish line with your monthly goal! I grew pretty used to crawling under my quilts with my old machine that I get a tad nervous NOT doing it with this one. LOL. Chickens are so silly they way they can be afraid of things, and sometimes I think it's just when a dominant one acts afraid that they all do. After having multiple batches, I've seen one group be completely afraid of something, and then my next batch will run right up to it. Who knows? But they are so entertaining! As for the MRI, I hope everything's okay; personally, I'm claustrophobic so I have to take a valium to stay relaxed (if it's over my head). At a recent MRI, I was given warm blankets and headphones with my choice of music (I chose "spa") and honestly, I was so relaxed I almost fell asleep! Who'd have thought??

  4. Your cheetah and llama are just spectacular, Anne Marie! I am in awe!! I love that slow-stitching Capri design, too. Who is the designer for that one? You know I am the glutton for punishment when it comes to slow stitchers! ;-). I feel your pain, literally, right this minute about college tuition with two sons enrolled simultaneously. Son the Elder is not on track to finish within four years, and the “silver lining” (if we look with our rose colored glasses) is that Son the Younger did not thrive in his freshman year away, so he is living at home this year and getting back on track at community college. We thought we had saved and planned adequately, but we were counting on 4 years of undergraduate tuition for each one, not 5 or more…. I’m sure the Lord has a plan but I am not seeing it at the moment!