Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Pink Selvages--Rainbow Scrap Challenge

Some of the selvages used
Goal number two on my May list was to glue the selvages for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color of the month which is pink. Pink doesn't frequent my stash; so getting enough selvages was a challenge. I thought about putting out an SOS; but, in the end, I managed!

A few more selvages
This month, I did remember to take close up photos of the selvages. That Eiffel Tower fabric, I made into a skirt for my oldest granddaughter when she was in elementary school. (She's a sixth grader now!)

Squares in process
I did use some selvages twice. I did use more of the solid selvages than I usually use; but, in the end, I was able to make four sets of four selvages squares. 

Finished sets of four

Life is great! Linking up to Angela at SoScrappy/Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2024. I'm also linking up to To Do Tuesday!

Men's monogram
I also finished the March software embroidery software which was about monograms. I made a baby's monogram, had an introduction to the art canvas tool and made a men's monogram. It was fun! Shelly Fitzgerald, who is the instructor, is easy to follow. I'm enjoying these lessons. I am learning my Bernina 9 embroidery software. Goal number three on my May list was to complete the February, March, April and May software lessons. I've completed wo lessons; I've two lessons remaining!

Sunday, May 19, 2024

Judge's Comments

Goal number eight on my May list was to share the judge's comments on my three guild show entries. Quilters of all levels should share their work. It makes me sad when I hear people say that "I'm not good enough to enter."  My favorite shows to attend are those which exhibit a variety of quilting levels. I come away more inspired from viewing those quilts! There wouldn't have been much of a show if only the extra spectacular quilts were entered. 

Quilting detail of Lone Star Modern Contemporay

Many people don't realize that when their quilt is judged, the judge has two to three minutes maximum to look at the quilt and make comments. If they don't adhere to the time standard, they won't be finished in time for the show to open to the public! I also appreciate receiving feedback regarding my entries. Often, I have an idea what the comments will be although I'm harder on myself than the judge has been!

In this post, I'm sharing the quilt and the comments. A heart felt thank you to Nancy T for being the drop off depot to get my quilts into the show and for delivering my quilts to my home after the show. I had knee surgery the day we were to drop off our quilts. I also appreciated Nancy for photographing my entries as well as many other entries so I could "see" some of the show even though I couldn't attend in person.

Lone Star Modern Contemporary
Lone Star Modern Contemporary:

Judge's Comments: Color and value are well chosen for the classic design. Very good visual movement created through placement of value. Quilting motifs are well designed to fill background areas and utilize negative space well. Upper and lower pieced borders effectively frame the center motif.

I struggle with color and value. I smiled when I read I did well with my choices for this design. I also struggled with quilting motifs so to read my free form filler stitches were well designed and used the negative space well made me smile again!

Seeing the quilt hang in the photo was the first time I had seen it from that perspective. I like it even more than I did when I finished it!

Lime Sprinkle
Lime Sprinkle:

Judge's Comments: Outstanding design is enhanced by the choice of the color palette. Small additions of gold and green elements provide very good visual interest. Directional changes in quilting lines are very effective. (Second place.)

For my first foray into Improv style quilting, I loved reading "outstanding design is enhanced by the choice of the color palette." I also appreciated the "directional changes in quilting lines are very effective." Quilting this piece in a "modern way" was a challenge for me!

I shared the comments and the second place with Irene Roderick. I began this project in her class via Zoom in January. Irene replied, "Congratulations! Thx for letting me know. . .makes me so proud!"


Judge's Comments: Effective subtle value change in background. Excellent movement created through placement and size of triangles. The gold fabrics seem to glow against the background. Excellent faced edge. (Honorable Mention)

I'm glad the judge could embrace the subtle value change in the background. I wanted to create a feeling of movement and "glow" of the gold fabrics and the judge saw it! I also sweated over that faced edge!

Linking to Cynthia and Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework!

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Thank You Sally!!! AND Software Progress!!!

I was the winner of some scraps this month. I am going to have so much fun playing with these chunks! I especially am taken with the animal print laying on the top of the pile. I actually met Sally who writes "The Objects of Design" blog. We were sitting together at a table taking in quilts for the quilt show. In between drop offs, we chatted. She said she wrote a blog. . .that was a couple years before COVID and I've followed her ever since! 

I laugh at the antics of her quilt supervisors, Molly and Buddy. Her humor and projects using scraps inspire me with each post! This month, she drew my name to be the recipient of some scraps that she was ready to part with. I am feeling so fortunate! Thank you, Sally!!

Scraps, beautiful scraps

Regarding the embroidery software progress:
I thought that while I was in the first stage of my knee recovery I would be spending time catching up with my embroidery software lessons. To recap: at the end of January, I put aside the software lessons to work on my quilt show entries. At that point, I had a few minutes left of the additional January module to finish. 

Unfortunately, the position I needed for my knee didn't allow me to work on the software lessons until this month when I could again sit in my recliner chair. Getting back into the swing of the software program took some time too. Goodness, I forgot a lot in a few months!!! As I was reacquainting myself with that January lesson, I found that I had made an error early in that last lesson. It was easier to start the lesson from the beginning.

Bonus January lesson

It took time; but, repeating the exercise was a good review. Then, I began the February lesson. Shelly, our instructor, had posted a number of videos that were an overview of various keys/tabs in the software. I looked at those first and then launched into the lesson.

February lesson
It was a fun lesson. I like that the modules are around 15 minutes in length. I like being able to stop the video, rewind and replay it again. This is the class that I needed to orient me to my software and I've only completed the first two lessons!

Goal number three of my May list was to complete the February, March, April and May software lessons. I likely won't get caught up this month; but, I am making progress. At some point, I will stitch out the lessons; but, for now, I'll concentrate on learning the information in the lessons.


Sunday, May 12, 2024

January 2024 Temperatures Blocks Complete

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms. . .I include moms of fur babies too! Yesterday was my husband's mom's 90th birthday. He made the two and half hour drive to Eugene which is south of us and had breakfast with her. I'll be calling my mom today to wish her a Happy Mother's Day. She lives about a two and half hour drive east of us. My knee isn't ready for a long drive yet.

Making progress on January days
Goal number five on my May list was to piece the days of January for the 2024 Temperature quilt. The wings signify the low temperature of the day and the goose signifies the hight temperature of the day. I use the weather underground history website to retrieve the temperature data.

Small dots = rain; larger dots = sun
Planning a bit, I found stitching the flying geese blocks leader/ender style worked efficintly. In the beginning, lining up the intersections was bothersome. I restitched the intersections often until I began adding a few drops of glue to the seam allowance in that area. The glue worked so much better than either "feeling" or pinning the intersections. The intersections look great!

January blocks
In a few days, I'll be six weeks post surgery for knee joint replacement. I'm still working on the knee rehab. I'm making progress in tiny increments. I welcome any progress! This is a project that doesn't irritate my knee because I can limit how much I sit. I sit to stitch a seam. I stand to press it and I stand to cut fabrics for the next block. I repeat the process. I was able to create blocks for an hour before I needed to take a break. The better news is that I could complete several sessions before I was too tired.
January and February blocks
In fact, I the process worked so well with the January blocks that I completed the February blocks too! While I've oriented these rows horizontally for this post, I do plan a vertical orientation of the blocks in the quilt. It has felt so good to spend some time in the studio! 

I've some other projects to make progress on this month; but, I look forward to making even more progress next month. I am liking the results. Mother Nature is a good colorist. The pink/purple/dark blue fabrics signify cold weather. There were a few days where the high and the low used the same fabric.I do need to determine what the filler blocks for months with less than 30 days will be. I can make that decision later. I'm linking to Cynthia at Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2024

A Banana Bread Taste Test

Betty Crocker recipe on left vegan recipe on right
In this household, banana bread is a favorite of my husband. I'll out myself here and report that we'd been married around twenty years before I learned this about him. I thought he loved zucchini bread so I was often baking him a loaf. 

One day, I had some over ripe bananas and made a loaf of banana bread out of the Betty Crocker cookbook he had when he was in college. (The copyright of the book is 1950.) When he smelled and ate the bread, he gushed and gushed over it. That was when I learned that banana bread was his favorite!

Top: vegan; bottom: Betty Crocker
Ever since at least once a month,  I've baked a loaf of banana bread. . .with nuts! A while ago, our London daughter sent us a link to a vegan banana bread recipe. She often sends vegan links because cow dairy products upset granddaughter Miss J's digestive tract. 

Five bananas were ready to be made into bread which was the perfect number for the two recipes. I decided to make both recipes and see which was the better recipe. Betty's recipe is below:                                                 Mix together thoroughly: 2/3 C sugar, 1/3 C soft shortening, 2 eggs. Stir in: 3 Tablespoons sour milk or buttermilk (I use a non dairy milk), 2 mashed bananas.                     Sift together and stir in: 2C flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt. Blend in: 1/2 C chopped nuts. Pour into well greased 9x5x3 loaf pan. Let stand 20 minutes before baking. Bake until it tests done. Serve warm or cold. Temperature 350 degrees F. Bake 50 to 60 minutes.

While the vegan recipe was good, Betty's recipe was the hands down winner. After baking and testing the bread, I took a two hour nap. Later in the afternoon, I took a 30 minute nap. The knee continues to disrupt my sleep. Most nights, I'm sleeping a two hour and a three hour shift with a two hour break in-between. That routine isn't enough! Perhaps tonight will be the beginning of longer sleep periods.

Sunday, May 5, 2024

April Update and May Goals


2024 Temperature quilt
My April goals were:

✔1. Make progress on the 2022-2023 temperature quilt.
✔2. Glue selvage squares in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color of the month.
✖3. Complete the February, March and April embroidery software lessons.
✔4. Begin planning a modern mystery quilt along for next year.
✔5. Catch up with the temperatures for the 2024 temperature quilt.
✔6. Get the Kerr and Ringle mystery to a top.
✔7. Do my PT and follow the recovery plan so that I will heal correctly and be able to have the range of motion to kneel for: CPR training, or quilt blocking or to play with the granddaughter. 

My May goals are:
1. Make Progress on the 2022-2023 temperature quilt,
2. Glue Selvage squares in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color of the month,
3. Complete the February, March, April and May embroidery software lessons,
4, Continue planning a modern mystery quilt along for the next year.
5. Piece the January days for the 2024 temperature quilt.
6. Continue my PT. I have a six week appointment with the surgeon towards the end of the month.
7. Figure out a plan for the latest book club quilt.
8. Share the judge's comments from the three quilts I entered in the Clark County Quilt show.
Linking up with Cynthia at Oh Scrap.

Wednesday, May 1, 2024

Waiting. . .A Knee Update

It's been about a week and a half since I tore that quadriceps muscle. My knee continues to improve in spite of the muscle rehab process. I am better. Today, we took our daughter out to a birthday lunch. This was the first time that I sat at a table for more than about 15 minutes. At the end of lunch, I was shocked at how weak that leg felt. Also, I was exhausted and took a two hour nap! 

I haven't been able to work on my embroidery software classes because my knee hasn't been comfortable working with the laptop on my lap. Maybe in a couple of weeks, I'll be able to work at a table for short time periods. I plan to start trying ten minute intervals tomorrow.

At PT today, I'm told the muscle is healing and that I'm making progress. I have less knee swelling and am taking an ibuprofen every four to six hours for swelling and pain. I don't have much pain. The pain comes from needing to move or from ROM exercises or from moving for too long a time. Tomorrow. I return the ice machine. It has been so useful. I'm glad I was able to rent it.

Not being able to sit also has affected my ability to work on quilting projects. I need to place the border on the other side of my temperature quilt. Maybe, I'll be able to get it in place sometime this month. As for sewing. . .who knows. 

I'm still not able to drive. I thought for sure I'd be driving by this time. PT tells me that in two weeks, I'll see and feel improvement. My fingers are crossed and of course, I'll continue putting in the work with the exercises!

Sunday, April 28, 2024

Update on the 2022-2023 Temperature Quilt

Close up view of the border
Goal number one on my April list was to make progress on my 2022-2023 Temperature quilt. I sure thought that I not only would have finished appliquéing one border to the top; but, that I would well be on my way to appliquéing the second side on the top. I sure didn't realize how much I would be challenged with the knee joint replacement recovery!

Last night, I finished appliquéing one side in place. Next month, I'll work on getting the other side prepped and begin stitching it.

One border on 
Goal number four on my April list was to begin planning a modern mystery quilt along. I have begun the process. In June, I'm planning a get together on Zoom to share photos of the quilts/tops/blocks people made during the mystery this year. (We participated in Bonnie Hunter's Indigo Way mystery quilt.) At that wrap up meeting, I wanted to get feedback about sone of my thoughts for the next mystery. 

Because it is a mystery, I may write about it; but, I'll be keeping the design under wraps! I'm linking to Cynthia at Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework.