October OMG Finished!

This one ended up going together much faster than I expected! That's always a nice thing. I have backing fabric and a quilting design picked out. I'm going to be so busy quilting my own quilts in December after I finish my bookings for the year. 

Getting a decent photo was a challenge. It was super windy Monday (I finished this on Sunday) and it rained all day yesterday. We got a lot of blooper pictures. LOL.

If you stopped by last week, you might have seen that I mentioned we'd have no power Friday due to line maintenance. I was already scheduled to go sew with my friends at a retreat on Saturday and they were kind enough to let me have a bonus sewing day on Friday. I felt super guilty for not working when I have an abundance but it was so nice to just sit and sew. 

I finished this mini top; it's around 14". I'm hoping to quilt it and put it in our sale in a few weeks. I found this a bit frustrating because it had pressing instructions that I followed, but those instructions did not make the seams nest, which resulted in a lumpy finish. I will adjust for the second one (kit had enough to cut out two).

I started working on a holiday table runner made entirely from stash. I finished the two star blocks at the retreat.

I liked this block so much that I unsewed and resewed it like three times. 😒 This is also destined for the sale if I can get it done in time. You'll notice there is still an error in this photo.

One not so great thing is that I was going out for a walk/hike around the retreat lodge with a few of the ladies and I slipped and fell on some large, loose limestone gravel (more like #2 size, I wouldn't really call it driveway size) on a steep decline. I thought I was okay and continued the walk, did the usual evening walk both days of the weekend, and realized that I was in a lot of pain and had a lot of bruising and swelling Monday. I messaged the doctor and they sent me over to the orthopedic walk-in clinic that I didn't even know existed. I had x-rays and was evaluated to see if I might have a damaged meniscus. Nothing is broken, I don't have any signs of arthritis in my knees--that was what they kept trying to tell me I had--, and the meniscus is inconclusive. So I have to take it easy, ice three times a day, no squatting, bending, walking on uneven surfaces, or running. Ha! like running was ever going to happen. If you ever see me running, something is very wrong. I HATE running with a passion.

So, quilting is going slowly because I have to keep stopping to elevate my leg. And I got another notice from Duke yesterday morning that our power will be out all day Thursday for further maintenance. 😩 NO! I don't have time for this. We are getting our updated booster shots Friday afternoon, so I'm expecting Saturday and maybe Sunday to be a wash as well. Ugh. I'm going to be working days, nights, and weekends for a while. I'll get there, though. And it's a good lesson that I need to be less ambitious with my scheduling, because things go haywire with the least little interruptions to my schedule.

I did manage to get four quilts completed over the past week, along with binding all three kings from last week. 

This one is Deb's, quilted with Ginger Leaf.

Another of Deb's, quilted with Loops and Swirls.

Margaret's, quilted with Augusta.

And one for Christi, quilted with Pyrex Stems.

I have another one loaded and ready to go this morning. 

Moving over to the home and garden thing, the chickens are at least teenagers now, in my estimation. They eat a ton.

My daughter had a field trip this weekend for one of her classes and got to help band birds. She said titmice are mean. This one looks so cute though. She already applied what she learned when she had to handle some new birds at work.

Lettuce is great and ready for another harvest, herbs are coming along, everything else is dead or dying in the outdoor gardens.

Before the rain started yesterday we had some amazing rainbows around town--I saw multiple pictures on social media, some with two or three rainbows. I went outside in my pajamas to get this shot.

Thanks for stopping by. Come back next week to see what I choose for my November OMG.

Very Large Quilts

How has it already been a week? I feel like I've been really busy but don't have much to show for it. It's a bit unsettling.

I have quilted four quilts. 

First is Charlene's, quilted with Hooked Up.

Next is one for Jess, quilted with Bora Bora. This is the first of the very large quilts.

Next is another of Jess's quilted with loopy meander. I have to laugh because when she dropped it off, she told me that she hopes it doesn't break my machine. She is an MSU alum and it was hard for her to make a U of M quilt. I just enjoy a bit of home down here, particularly hearing someone who sounds similar.

The third very large quilt is Sandy's, quilted with Crazy Daisy. This one took me two days, so you get two pictures. 

I still have to fully bind all three of the very large quilts.

Meanwhile, I've made a teensy tiny bit of progress on my own things. I have the October clue finished for the Melodic Mystery.

I have most of this month's OMG done. I just need to add top and bottom borders. Here is a sneak peek since I have no open space in the sewing room at the moment (see three very large quilts above 😉).

I finished cutting out a mini quilt. Actually I cut out two, because there was enough fabric in the kit to do two. This only got done because it was all over my cutting table and I needed to clear it off to make the bindings. I am having a sewing day with friends Saturday, so I may work on these then. Or I might just sit and vegetate. We'll see.

Speaking of veggies, I harvested all of the lettuce from Aerogarden one and we ate it for dinner Sunday. That took about three weeks from planting to first harvest. It's already filling back in. All the herbs in Aerogarden two have sprouted, but aren't big enough to remove the initial domes yet. I noticed the filter didn't seem to be running, so I fiddled with the cord and that seems to have gotten it going again.

I got outside too late last night to grab a picture of the chickens. They were already in the coop. They look pretty full grown to me, but they aren't particularly fluffy yet. I'm told they need to have another molt or possibly two still.

I'll leave you with this cool picture I took last night.

See you next week.

PS--just found out that we will be without power all day Friday. 😩

The One in Which I Voluntarily Did Custom Quilting

Once again the week has just flown by. I don't have a ton of progress on anything, mostly because I voluntarily chose to do custom quilting on one of the quilts my guild donates to a local charity for fundraising. As always, I seriously underestimated how long it will take me to complete a custom. Remind me to double my time estimate next time I decide to do one of these for someone else.

I have found that people who are not quilters can't tell much of a difference between edge to edge and custom. So why did I decide on custom for this quilt? Well, it was a round robin quilt and the makers had different design aesthetics. There was a lot of plain gray fabric that I felt needed to be dressed up. I started by sketching ideas in mark up mode in the photos app on my iPad. When I was satisfied with my design, I started working on the quilt. I thought I could get in done in a weekend. HA HA HA. It took me four days. I used nine thread colors on it.

My goal with this was to avoid having to switch between my ruler base and my iQ. I'm not sure why, but adding the ruler base always changes my tension significantly. So I ended up using a lot of line pattern to replicate ruler work. Basically I had to mark along each area with a clicker, place and adjust patterns, and then stitch. So it was slow. I drew a lot of my own patterns, including the vine I used in the green borders, the pumpkin seed in the yellow border, all the aforementioned line patterns, and a brick pattern I used on the silo. I also drew all my cross hatch blocks, but some of those didn't quite go as planned. I need more work on ones that go around designs. I did the black borders freehand.

I then decided to go with a pantograph (Ansley Park 2) in a really tiny, 4" row height, scale to fill in all the gray areas. I forgot to measure before I started, so I guessed at my pantograph area.

Here's what my pattern ended up looking like on my iQ.

Prior to taking leave of my senses, I completed two quilts for others. 

This one is Charlene's, quilted with Winterfest.

Sally's, quilted with Ansley Park 2. Yes, this was my trial run for the custom quilt. 

I did make a very, very, very small amount of progress on my OMG, but didn't take a picture.

Oh, and I almost forgot! I can share the quilt I tested with you. This pattern is called Silly Goose and you can purchase it from Yellow Umbrella Quilts. The pattern has two variations and I found it quick and enjoyable to sew.

I used the trimmed HST to make the back.

We've had a couple frosts, so the outdoors plants are not looking ideal. My indoor lettuce is almost ready to harvest and I set up my second Aerogarden over the weekend. I planted four of the herb pods that came with it and two of chives that I sowed. I wanted to do another chive plant, but I only had stickers for two of the pods. I found a shop on Etsy that 3D prints reusable pod covers and ordered some, but they haven't shipped yet. I'll be ready for my next crop though.

We gave the chickens a new food--coolapeno peppers. These are jalapeños with much less heat. As long as they were chopped in tiny parts, the chickens were happy to eat them. We also discovered that fresh clover is the best thing ever!!!

We also discovered that there is a persimmon tree growing just beyond our property line. Someone bought the lot it sits on and clear-cut almost the entire, densely wooded lot. 😭😭 The creatures are not happy, nor are most of the neighbors whose property is adjacent. Anyway, they left a few trees right along the property line. We were trying to decide how many Norway Spruce to purchase to try to regain some of the privacy and noticed the persimmons. We had no idea it was there. My neighbors discovered they have paw paws along their lot line. Lots of discoveries by those of us trying to preserve the trees. 

We were out on a walk the other day when we noticed what could only be squash blossoms growing on a vacant lot (next to the clear cut lot). This lot had been mostly cleared recently, though they left the large trees on that one.  Anyway, we found a bunch of baby gourd plants and some other weird plants that turned out to be moonflowers. How on earth did all those get there? Moonflowers are highly toxic.  Aren't the seed pods weird looking?

One last bit of news. After 5.5 years, my son is getting his braces removed tomorrow!

Linking with My Quilt Infatuation and Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Alycia Quilts.

October OMG

I've been working from the same list of works in progress for the last few months. Here's what remains.

1. Make a backing for Tall Tales quilt. I'm planning to use my existing fabric and piece a backing. Possibly quilt and bind. --no progress

2. Bind Flower Patch SAL.--currently working on hand stitching it down; it's about 25% complete 

3. Assemble the top for my guild BOM.--done, need to seam backing , waiting on thread to arrive and free time on the long arm

4. Finish piecing Chalk.--a few rows assembled

5. Grassy Creek border.--no progress

6. Add border and quilt the art quilt.--no progress 

7. Finish last two blocks from #Trending quilt.--complete, backing prepared, waiting on free time for quilting

I think the thing that seems doable with a bit of effort is to finish piecing the Chalk top.

You know that means I have to stop dragging my feet on that blasted Grassy Creek border and finish that in November. I need to skip this year's quilt, other than maybe downloading the clues. I still have Unity and Rhododendron Trail in progress.

The only thing I've sewn this week are some pieced key chains to donate to the guild sale in November. I've been dragging my feet because I didn't fully read the instructions prior to beginning (story of my life) and found the construction method needlessly complex. I finally got over it and finished and have a small offering toward our fundraising efforts.

As always, I have been working on quilts for people. Here are last week's batch.

I finished up Jeri's quilt, quilted with Capri Feathers 2.

Quilted Marilyn's quilt with Outside In.

Quilted Legene's quilt with Ginger Leaf. 

Quilted Sara's quilt with Winterfest.

My new AeroGarden arrived Monday.  I'm trying to decide whether I want to plant the herbs that came with it or start more of my own seeds. If we do the herbs again, I will need to be better about keeping them trimmed so they don't get so out of control like the last batch did.

My lettuce in the original unit is doing well. It's just over two weeks now.

The chickens have sort of been trying new foods. They love watermelon, strawberry tops, and egg shells (so weird and cannibalistic!). They like tarragon. They seem to prefer dried up spearmint over fresh--not dried, but literally dried up from being picked and left there. They do not like carrot peels or broccoli tops. They will eat the broccoli stems if peeled and finely diced. They eat feathers. (Also weird.) They like baby crab grass but not big, thick crab grass. They like chasing bugs around the pen. 

After much debate, I think we have settled on names for them. The rooster is Smoky Pecker. My son and I call him Mr. Pecker. The black hen is Agatha Pepper. The white hen is Henrietta Salt (to become Henry if she is a he). The smaller brown hen is Peanut and the larger one is Beaker. I tried to get a picture of them last night, but they had gone up the ramp early. Enjoy these blooper photos.

Linking with My Quilt Infatuation and Confessions of a Fabric Addict.