Saturday, July 31, 2021

One Monthly Goal for July Met!

The center of the project
My one monthly goal for July was to complete the string piecing for my challenge quilt.  I decided to piece the widest string sections first. I used newsprint as my paper foundation. I selected the printed strings from Martha's stash. 

I've used her strings from a two gallon plastic bag to piece my Rainbow Scrap Challenge (RSC) blocks since January 2021. I've pieced 84 eight inch blocks so far from that bag. In the RSC, I've used the strings that I could categorize as a color. I had lots of strings left that were multi colored so those became the basis of this project. 

Adding the first sashing and cornerstones
I cut the newspaper strips into 22 inch long sections because that was the greatest length that I could cut from my newspaper. I pieced four sections at a time. This month, I Zoomed with three of my small groups. This was a great project to work on because I could visit without being concerned about making a piecing error!

I found it challenging to piece the 6 1/2 inch strips without the strips tilting. Longer strips, while using more fabric, also take more time to cover the base of the paper. I used the majority of the printed strips which was great! I have a few long strips remaining in the bag. (Gertie, my inner squirrel thought I was wise to leave a little "seed stock" behind for a second quilt. . .although she has ideas of altering the pattern a bit. Gertie never ceases with ideas!)

After I finished piecing the widest strip foundations, I pieced the next largest size strip which was the 4 1/2 inch strips. That process went faster. As I stitched the 6 1/2 inch strips, I sorted the colored strips into piles of 4 1/2 inch strips and 3 1/2 inch strips. 

3 1/2 inch string border in place
I used all of the 4 1/2 inch strips and most of the bricks (2 1/2 x 4 1/2 inch pieces) that I had cut when I initially began using Bonnie Hunter's Scrap User's System. I cut the bricks into a variety of two widths because varying the string width is more interesting to the eye! 

Again, it was great to use the printed fabrics in this string piecing. No longer are those fabrics stored! I freed a few quart size plastic zip lock bags during this process. After I finished piecing the 4 1/2 inch wide strips, I pieced the 3 1/2 inch wide strips. I still had some scraps left so I made a
pile of 2 1/2 inch strips. I'm thinking that these will become strips of Chinese coins for a future project! 

Light gray border and cornerstones
As I stitched the 3 1/2 inch wide strips, I felt like I had made great use of that two gallon bag of strings! Once I had finished piecing the strings, I thought about posting because I had met my monthly goal of piecing the strings. Gertie, wanted me to keep going. Actually, I was curious how long it would take me to piece the top once I had all the strings pieced and trimmed.

Putting together the nine patch center of the top was a snap. Placing the white sashing and cornerstones was just as easy. Next, I laid out my 3 1/2 inch string border. I pieced it together until I had a strip long enough for each side. I removed the paper, added the corner stones if needed and stitched it to the white border.

Gertie was right! It was fun watching the top grow on the design wall. With each addition, I liked what I saw. I wanted to see what the next round would add to the top! I added the light grey border and cornerstones. I moved on to the 4 1/2 inch wide strip border. I followed the same process as I did adding the 3 1/2 inch wide strip. I was glad that I had left the paper on the strings because it was easier to determine the length needed for the next border.

Dark gray border and cornerstones
Once I had stitched the 4 1/2 inch border into place, I added the dark gray border and cornerstones. So that there would be no seams in this border, I cut the strips the length of the
fabric. I stitched those strips in place and added the cornerstones. 

I moved on to adding the 6 1/2 inch border. At this stage, the top was too large for my design wall. I began to determine the strip length that I needed. By this time, I was ready to call it a day. It was the perfect project to work on during my Sit and Sew Zoom meeting.

The following day, I pieced the 6 1/2 inch strips together and removed the paper. This time, because the outside pieced edge was the outer edge of the top, I stay stitched the edge to prevent the strings from "unsewing" themselves.

Finished top
To photograph the result of the last border, I laid the top on the floor. I do like the results. This project was the perfect way to use those printed fabrics that contain lots of different colors. In fact, many of those add interest to design. I stitched about 3 1/2 yards of strings to make these borders. I have some of the strips left. I'm leaving those as seed stock because I like Gertie's idea to make another of these quilts!

Should you want to make a Scrap Vortex too, you can purchase and download the pattern through Quilting Daily. I shopped my stash and selected the backing fabrics. These have been in my stash a long time. The selvage edge reads 2007 on one of the fabrics! I remember buying it with my friend Gail at a quilt show.

I don't mind piecing a back for a quilt. In fact, it is a good way to use leftovers so those extra bits don't become part of string and chunk storage! Sometimes, I've pieced backs that could have been a front. Even though I was tempted to make two quilts, I didn't. If I were faster at the quilting phase, I might have.
Backing fabrics

I'm glad that Gertie "encouraged" me to keep stitching to see what the top would like. I'm linking to Elm Street Quilts One Monthly Goal - July Finish Link-up. This was goal number one on my July list. It was also my OMG! Wahoo. . .I made it!!!

Because I used scraps, I'm also linking to Quilting is More Fun Than Housework.

Do you have an inner squirrel? If you do, would you please comment and let me know how to the two of you work together?

Regarding COVID: 
Worldwide: 197M cases; 4.2M deaths
United States: 35M cases; 613K deaths
Oregon: 220K cases; 2,886 deaths

The Delta variant of COVID continues to infect people worldwide as well as here in the United States. Those unvaccinated are affected most and are filling hospital beds to capacity. In some parts of the world and here in the United States, some restrictions are back in place. I hope that there is not another lock down coming as we have been restricted far too long waiting out this disease.

Some school districts are planning that the students will be maskless in the fall. This week, the Oregon governor released a statement saying that all students and staff will be masked when school starts in September. 
Our London daughter is here for visit. We are grateful she was able to travel as it is wonderful to see her in the "flesh!" She plans to visit quite a few friends before she heads back to London in about a month. Yes, she is taking an extended vacation and hanging out with family! How special for us!!

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Santa Tree Skirt Project Started

Piecing the sections

Goal number two on my July list was to begin piecing a Santa Tree skirt. This whole project is scraps from previous projects. . .actually most of the scraps are from previous Santa tree skirts. With this project, all that remains of the background fabric are some squares and triangles. I pieced the background fabric to make large enough pieces for this project!

This is my fifth tree skirt. The first I made as a Christmas present for a sister-in-law in the early 90s when I originally purchased the pattern. All the other tree skirts have been wedding gifts. I made one last year for a niece that married in August. One of the gifts that I received when I married was a small box of Christmas ornaments. I didn't have ornaments so that gift was appreciated at tree decorating time and appreciated every year since! I also don't have to worry about the couple receiving a duplicate!

Right side of the block
There are a lot of pieces in this project. I've found it helpful to label the pieces. I've also found it helpful to cut the whole project out at once. This is a Lorraine Stangess pattern that I picked up around 1992. Lorraine retired in 2019. This pattern has been out of print for a long time.

At the end of the first session of piecing sections together, I had three of the four sections mostly pieced together. I do best when I lay out the pieces for a section. After I piece a section, I piece another part of the segment. 

Completed block
At the end of the second session, I had the blocks pieced. At the end of the third session, I had drawn the eyes on the blocks, appliquéd the mustaches and stitched the blocks together.

I used a 60wt aurifil cream thread and a blind hem stitch to appliqué the mustaches. I used a setting of 1.5 width and 1 lenght for the setting. I used this stitch because I wanted the texture of the thread to show on the applique. I wanted the stitching to add a little more definition to the block. I also used a piece of exam table paper as a stabilizer on the back of the block. After I finished adhering the mustache to the face, I removed the paper from the back of the block. Removing the paper was easy.

Top ready for the ruffle
There are a lot of places in the design where if the sections don't line up, it would be noticeable. Fortunately, the sections lined up within reason. After all the years since this pattern was released, I still think it is a happy block.

At the end of the third session, I had pieced the blocks together. I made the ties and stitched the sections of the ruffle together. Next up is to stitch the ruffle and to add the ties.  I'll layer it and stitch around the edges. After it is stitched, I'll turn it right side out. Then it will be time to quilt it!

Even though I've completed a good part of this project, I still have hours left before it will be a finish. It isn't a time sensitive project. My plan is to get this project to the quilting stage and let it marinate until I finish quilting my challenge project. 

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Blue or Brown for July Rainbow Scrap Challenge (RSC)

Brown or blue string decision
When Angela released the color for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge this month, we had a choice! It could be blue again. If you were finished with blue, you could choose a dark neutral like brown or black! I seriously thought about brown because I have brown strings. 

When I looked at the amount of brown strings I had on hand, I decided that there were far fewer brown strings than were in the the bag of blue strings so blue strings it was! I also didn't have much variety in the brown strings and maybe there wouldn't be enough strings for twelve blocks.
Remaining blue scraps

Therefore, I planned to work with the darker blue shades but found that I didn't have enough strings. In the end, I have more blue blocks. I am okay with having more blue blocks because I have so few blue strings left!

There might be enough brown strings to use as the center of a string block. . .hmm . . .Gertie, my inner squirrel noodled that idea while I stitched twelve more blocks. I imagine she will want to begin that project too. For now, I plan to continue making progress on the the four string projects I have going before beginning another project!

With each set of blocks that I complete, I find that Gertie  
Completed strings

wants to play with design layouts. I keep telling her that we
need to stay stitch the outer edge of the blocks before we get too excited about the design process. So far, she is content with waiting. 

My plan is to stay stitch the block edges with old thread that was in my grandmother's stash. We spent a lot of time together. She taught me to sew and shared many stories of making do during the depression and World War II. She gave away most of what she created. I've stitched her threads along the edge of a quilt when I'm determining the outer edge. It is my way to honor her love of creating and giving!
I'm linking to SoScrappy and the RSC. I'm also linking to Oh Scrap and Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework. This was goal number five on my July list

Regarding COVID: 
Worldwide: 193M cases; 4.14M deaths
United States:  34.4M cases; 610K deaths
Oregon: 215K cases; 2,867 deaths

The Delta variant of COVID continues to infect people worldwide as well as here in the United States. Those unvaccinated are affected most and are filling hospital beds to capacity. In some parts of the world and here in the United States, some restrictions are back in place. I hope that there is not another lock down coming as we have been restricted far too long waiting out this disease.

Some school districts are planning that the students will be maskless in the fall. Since there is no vaccination available for kids under 12, perhaps, more thought and more discussion will produce a different plan for the fall. 

Our London daughter is here for visit. We are grateful she was able to travel as it is wonderful to see her in the "flesh!" She plans to visit friends and family before she heads back to London in about a month. Yes, she is taking an extended vacation and hanging out with family! How special for us!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2021


Miss K striking a pose in her new leggings
The granddaughters were over yesterday. They arrived just as I was finishing sewing the oldest's pair of leggings. I timed myself. It took me exactly 13 minutes to sew her pink pair of leggings! Miss K gave them a quick try on to see if I had gotten the alteration right. I did! She was tickled! 

Of course, one granddaughter can't get a new pair of leggings without the other granddaughter getting a new pair too. The deal was that the youngest granddaughter could make her own. Miss J was "down" for the sewing!

When she was over for the sleepover, she helped me adjust the bobbin tension on Inky, my featherweight. She had decided that when she comes over, Inky is her machine because she knows how to adjust the bobbin tension AND because the machine is her size!

Inky sews well on woven fabrics. Joie, my Bernina, sews well on stretch fabrics. Miss J decided she could give Joie a spin. She also got to clean finish her seams on the serger. She loved watching the knife cut away the seam allowance.

Stretching the fabric ahead and behind the needle
It took Miss J about half an hour to finish her pair of leggings. She liked how they fit as well. She liked the horse print as much as her sister liked the pink fabric. She took the lesson about stretching the fabric in front and behind the needle seriously. Her seam allowance varied a bit. She did well to keep her foot on the foot pedal as well as keeping her hands busy all at the same time.

Once she finished, I told her that she could enter them in the fair since she stitched them herself. She is considering the entry. I asked them to put on their leggings so I could snap a photo. They chose to take the photo outside "in nature." I don't know that I call our backyard "in nature," but, their comment made me chuckle! 

Modeling the new leggings "in nature"

I used half of a yard of fabric for each pair of leggings. Both of these fabrics were scraps from previous projects. I've now used 9 1/4 yards from my stash this year. This was goal number three on my 3rd quarter goal list. It was also goal number three on my July goal list.

Miss K didn't get a chance on a machine so the next time she comes, we will rectify that situation! I'm glad they both are showing an interest in stitching!

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Final Pieced Frolic Border in Progress (post 8)

Working out the zig zag design
 Over the last couple of weeks, I've been stitching a few half square triangles together in to a zig zag design. It took me a little bit to figure out the orientation of the HSTs to equate to the zigzag shape. 

It also took some time for me to figure out the pressing so the seams would nest. I repressed some HSTs which helped. I pressed some seams open. Slowly my pile of HSTs became chunks of Zigs and Zags!

My plan is to piece a section of 12 HSTs together into three Zig Zags until I have pieced all the HSTs together that I originally stitched in November of 2019! At that time, I had no idea the journey that this project would take me. It's grown bigger. I've scrounged scrap bags for more variety and to get "enough" pieces to make the various parts. I even colored outside the lines a bit stretching the colonial blue color since I had so little of that color in my stash.
A blue and a red component

When I've stitched the HSTs together, I plan to lay them out next to the quilt edge to determine how many more I need. I'm sure that I'll need more! Adding the additional HSTs between the pieced ZigZags should maintain the scrappy look as well as sprinkle the newly made HSTs more evenly in the mix.

Once I had stitched several sets of four HSTs together, I played with different orientations. In the end, I decided that alternating a blue zig with a red zag was most pleasing to me. I also decided that I preferred the zig zag pattern over points and slashes which are my terms for different layouts of the HSTs!
Sections stitched together

This was goal number four on my July goal list. If I stitch more before the end of the month. . .great! I think that I could leader/ender a few of these while I'm stitching other projects. Then again, I might like to have a stitching day of not having to think much about what I'm piecing!

Regarding COVID:
Worldwide:190M cases; 4.08M deaths
United States: 34M cases; 608K deaths
Oregon: 212K cases; 2,848 deaths

Auditioning a section
The number of people vaccinated in Oregon is slowly increase: 59.7% have had at least one shot and 55.1% are fully vaccinated. Since the number of vaccinations is barely increasing, researchers wanted to find out what was holding people back from becoming vaccinated. Since the state is polarized politically and since the majority of those not vaccinated do not approve of Governor Kate Brown, University of Oregon researchers stated that she should no longer be the primary messenger regarding becoming vaccinated. The nearly 700 people surveyed stated they had more trust in health care providers and doctors. They also stated a $100 incentive might sway them to change their mind.

At work, I had the opportunity to chat with a doctor about the disconnect with the unvaccinated people. He told me that he had retired once. He came back because those infected with COVID had strained medical resources and he said he wanted to help share the load. He contracted COVID early in the pandemic. When the vaccine was available to him, he took the vaccinations.

He said he originally tried to educate those unvaccinated with the science and the studies behind the vaccines. He said the attempts failed miserably which surprised him. He tried telling those people about his COVID experience which he said was "like talking to a tree in the forest." He has had marginal success with the fact that the Delta variant creates much more serious health issues including death in unvaccinated people. He anticipates the infection rate to rise this fall. He hopes that hospitals aren't pushed to capacity levels and that the mask restrictions and meeting restrictions are not reinstated.

He said one of his patients was a COVID long hauler. He said that the patient's lungs were so damaged that he was on oxygen and confined to a wheelchair. Unfortunately, this patient's lungs had showed no improvement in months. The doctor suspects that the patient will not regain his former health. The doctor shook his head and said, the vaccine could have prevented this patient's situation. 

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Gnomes--A Granddaughter Project

Assisting with the nose assembly
Last December my friend, Gail G, crafted a gnome at her guild meeting. A guild member led the activity which included project kits. Gail thought it would be an activity that my grand children would like to do. She put aside a couple kits for me. Then COVID kept us in our homes for months. In May, Gail, Connie P and I got together for lunch and a catch up. The food was five star and the show and tell was amazing! I, however, digress!

Gail gave me kits for two gnomes and she lent me her gnome so the girls had an idea of what their project was going to resemble. The girls LOVED the project. They each read through the directions so they could identify the supplies and had an idea of the steps involved. Yes, I could have had the girls search and locate a similar online tutorial. (To prepare, I watched several videos.) In the end, I decided taking time to read the directions was a better use of our time because the granddaughters asked questions about what some of the directions meant!

The whole activity, including the direction discussion, took about 30 minutes. From the start, they wanted their gnomes more "plump." We used about two cups of rice each for their gnomes. They thought using a funnel was a smart way of getting the rice into the sock because there was no "spillage."

Finished gnomes posed for action
I should not have been surprised, but I was, when each granddaughter carefully trimmed her sock for the hat of the gnome as well as cut off the excess sock from the gnome body. They are fast with a pair of scissors in their hands! I applied the glue to the hat and the beard following their arrangement. They left their gnome hats non pointy because they wanted their gnomes different from the directions. 

At the end of the activity, they talked about how the gnomes could make an appearance at other holidays in addition to Christmas. For example the green hatted gnome could hang out on St. Patrick's Day and the orange hatted gnome could hang out on Halloween AND Thanksgiving. Gail's red hatted gnome could hang out at Christmas, Valentine's Day and 4th of July. They decided all of the gnomes could hang out on Easter.

Thanks again Gail G for the kits. You were right about the fun factor! Their holiday discussion was priceless!

Sunday, July 11, 2021

Longarm Quilting for Charity AKA Park Place Quilting

Open studio day to welcome Thomas
The CCQ guild has a strong comfort quilt or charity quilt program. A member quilted about 500 quilts in two years to help the comfort group keep up with all the tops the members make! Unfortunately, he had cancer. He passed away earlier this year which left a huge hole in the comfort quilt program. He bequeathed his longarm to the guild. At first, the discussion was about selling the longarm; but, then a member stepped forward. Alvera G. not only offered to house the machine in her garage studio next to her longarm; but, she also offered to begin a longarm outreach program. 

The stitching design
Because there was no budget for the machine, Alvera asked for donations to move Thomas to his present location. In a couple of hours, guild members provided enough donations to move the machine as well as a give him a spa check up. There were even a few dollars left which will be used to purchase thread and other items to ensure the quilting continues.

To introduce us to Thomas, Alvera held an open studio day. In the open studio day photo, Alvera is wearing the blue vest. Bev W. is behind Alvera. Alvera and another guild member, Su H., are  training members how to use the longarm by quilting projects for the comfort group. There are about 20 guild members who are interested in participating in the longarm outreach program.

This week, I spent two days in training. Thomas is named after the man who donated the machine to the guild. The man's last name was Park. In his studio, he had the sign Park Place Quilting which Alvera also moved to her studio.  Thomas, the longarm, is an Innova paired with an AutoPilot computer software system. Alvera has the same longarm system. In fact, Alvera was the influence behind Thomas, the quilter, purchasing this particular package about eighteen months ago.

My first day was full of a lot of information! I practiced loading a quilt and setting up the parameters for quilting the quilt. I selected a quilt pattern and set it to the quilt parameters. I chose a thread. I practiced how to set the start and stop so the computer mirrored the project. With Alvera's help, I managed to almost quilt two small quilts. There was thread breakage. I "got" to learn how to stop and start when that happens. I also got to learn about rethreading the machine. Unfortunately, we weren't able to trouble shoot the tension issue that would happen about half way across the pass. At the end of the day, I didn't feel like l could remember the different processes. My body was tired and my brain was exhausted!

Thomas stitching the design
With any tool, it takes working with it to understand it so you get the most out of your efforts. I realize, I need time on the machine to get through the learning curve. Because of the technical issues, my brain focused more on the why the thread was breaking and why the mouse wouldn't work rather than on the process of the quilting.

Bev W. foreground and me quilting our projects
Day two was a much better experience. Bev and I carpooled. Riding together was a great opportunity to share our previous experiences. I wrote notes as I worked through the process. I'm a tactile learner. I have to experience the process and be immersed in it before I can learn it. I was pleasantly surprised at how much information I had retained from the previous day. I finished the quilt I had started the previous day and quilted a third quilt. (I didn't take a picture of the second quilt!) 

For the second quilt, I chose a different pattern but kept the same thread color. I still needed coaching; but, I was often able to follow Alvera's prompting when I got stuck with how to accomplish the next step. I can see that computerized longarm quilting would be fun. Day two was enjoyable. (Alvera purchased a new keyboard/mouse combination which solved the mouse issue I had encountered the previous day. She found rethreading the machine solved the thread breaking/tension issue.)

String piecing strips
My plan is to support the longarm outreach group one to two days per month for the next two years. It takes me about an hour to drive to the site and a little longer to return because of area traffic. When I asked Alvera how many quilts the longarm outreach group had quilted she said 24. This is an impressive number because the program is in its infancy. I think last week was the third week, Alvera and Su had been training operators. 

I'm curious how other guilds who have charity programs, get their tops quilted. I'm also curious if there are other guilds that have a longarm dedicated to charity work and that offer training. Please leave me a comment and share your knowledge!

While I would say I was an advanced domestic machine free motion quilter, I have had limited experience on a longarm. I quilted one quilt on Gerrie T.'s Gammill using a fan pantograph about 2007. Around that time, I basted three quilts on that same Gammill. The next time I quilted on a longarm was when I put out a plea for help to quilt my dad's star quilt. I also used a pantograph. I so appreciated Nancy P. lending time and expertise on her Gammill machine. (My dad's request came a few days after his doctors told him his illnesses would likely kill him in about 90 days. His quilt is the quickest I have completed a project. I started it in March 2015 and gifted it to my dad in May 2015. He used his "special request quilt" until he passed on December 24, 2016.)

Learning how to quilt on a longarm is a whole different skill set. I'm willing to put in the time to learn that skill! I'll spend some time over the next couple of weeks reviewing the notes that I wrote. Thank you again to Alvera for opening her studio to Thomas and for providing great training sessions! This was goal number seven of my July goals.

Since my last post, I also pieced some strings to make progress on my One Monthly Goal (OMG). I'm linking to Oh Scrap/Quilting is More Fun Than Housework. Please check out the link and enjoy viewing the scrappy projects people are stitching!

Regarding COVID:

Worldwide: 185M cases; 4M deaths

United States: 33.8M cases; 607K deaths

Oregon: 210K cases; 28,222 deaths

My library has extended the hours it is open. When I visited last Friday, patrons and staff were maskless. Children under 12 were also maskless. In Oregon, the percentage of fully vaccinated adults is 54.6 percent and the percentage of partially vaccinated adults is 59.3 percent. The delta variant of COVID continues to wreck havoc with the unvaccinated. 

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

3rd Quarter Goals 2021

1. Illusions project
This quarter, I had planned to list fewer goals and to have more finishes! Of the 22 items I listed last quarter, I met 10 of the goals. I made progress on four other projects and I didn't touch the other other eight projects. This quarter, however, I managed to list even more goals. So much for paring down!! Gertie, my inner squirrel, Provided the encouragement to dream big.

Below is my list:

3. Legging fabric
1. Complete the CCQ illusions challenge quilt. I plan to string piece the sections in July, assemble it in August and quilt it in September. I look forward to making a dent in a string bag that came from my friend Martha. 
2. Complete this project

2. Make this project. It has been on the list for years. It's time in the queue has arrived!!! A book inspired this project. I want to add red embellishments.

3. Finish the leggings for the granddaughters. I ripped the pink pair apart so that I can make them smaller and the fabric with the horses on it is for my other granddaughter. I stitched the other two fabrics into leggings for myself. I've been wearing them almost every day! 
4. More Frolic blocks and 5. Butterfly glue basting

4. Make more HSTs and complete the border for Frolic. Last quarter, I made more blocks and pieced them into a top that is 109 x 109! 

5. Finish glue basting the butterfly.

6.--10. These are small projects.  I want to make: a couple potholders, a few embellished kitchen towels, a couple more camel back bags and a couple Henrietta pincushions. I want to finish a second Happy Hearts table runner. 

13. Make a tree skirt
11.--12. These are handwork projects. Number 11 is the cross stitch duck kit that I didn't get to last quarter. Number 12 is the log cabin block embellished with hand stitching that I started in a Saturday workshop last January. 

13. Make a tree skirt. At one time, I had a goal of making one of these a year. It is a good gift for a bride. There might be an upcoming marriage. Last quarter I pulled fabric and created a kit. I have a wonderful metallic fabric for the ruffle.

14. Finish making string blocks from the Saturday workshop class I taught last January and piece together a top.

15.--16. Keep up with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge (RSC) and the Temperature Quilt. 

17. Actually, complete two lessons on the embroidery software.

21. Make a project inspired by the book, "For All the Tea in China."

22. Complete this top with Miss J

22. Work with Miss J to finish her farm block top.

23. Complete the CCQ challenge block.

24. Quilt three days on Thomas the longarm.

It is a big list. Let's see what I can accomplish in the next 90 days!

Sunday, July 4, 2021

June Recap and July One Monthly Goal

June temperature blocks
Working ten days last month plus a four night sleep over with the granddaughters, cut into my personal studio time. I, however, wouldn't have changed the activities. I am adjusting to getting back to the aquatic side of my life. I LOVED spending every minute with the granddaughters. I do plan to make fewer goals in July because of work and because --fingers crossed--our London daughter is planning to visit for an extended holiday. I hope that Biden will lift the travel restriction involving the UK. 

Strings for the challenge project--my OMG
In June, I kept up with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. I also kept up with making temperature quilt blocks. June had some high temperatures. We had some days over 100 with one day reaching 112 degrees Fahrenheit. I can't remember a time it was that hot in Oregon! The yellow and orange circles represent temperatures 90's and 100's respectively. This was goal number one. I also finished the penguin family quilt which was goal number two. I did determine the HST arrangement for the border of Frolic which was goal number four; but, I haven't made any progress toward actually stitching a few blocks together to determine if I like the actual result as much as my penciled drawing!

Miss K did finish her mermaid wall hanging which was goal number five. I did start the piecing on my CCQ challenge quilt which was goal number six. I have about 88 inches of the string piecing complete. I need to piece yards and yards of strings in different widths. I'll be at this step awhile. I did finish piecing the Jingle Bell Dance blocks that Gertie, my inner squirrel, convinced me to make to participate in a swap that is happening in September. Making the blocks was goal number eight. I did play with the needle punch attachment on my machine which was goal number 11.

I did not touch the tree skirt project which was goal number three. I didn't work on the embroidery software which was goal number seven. I also didn't start the selvage project that Gertie encouraged me to begin. I'm thinking I may begin it in January and make that project my RSC project for next year. Gertie is okay with delaying the start of the project. The selvage project was goal number nine. Miss J and I didn't sash her blocks which was goal number ten. We likely will save that for August. 
Sashing fabrics and pattern for OMG

I helped 16 people either attain their lifeguard instructor certification or renew it. I also helped 10 of those instructors renew their lifeguard certification. I renewed my lifeguard and lifeguard instructor certification. My pool isn't open nor do I have any idea when it will open. I miss the pool!! 

Santa tree skirt project
I also helped 40 staff at the hospital renew their American Heart Association Basic Life Support CPR certification. All in all, it was a productive month!

For July, I'm listing fewer goals because I'm working/volunteering about twelve days this month; I'm attending a couple in person activities and maybe my London daughter will be here for an extended visit.  My studio time will be less than it was in June!

1. Since I need to submit a photo of my challenge quilt by August 19 for my project to be hung in the CCQ guild quilt show, goal number one is to string piece the strips that I need for the project. I figure if I can string piece all the strips that I need, I'll be able to finish the project in time for the October show. This will be my One Monthly Goal though Elm Street Quilts One Monthly Goal July Link-up

2. Begin piecing the Santa tree skirt. The pieces are cut and ready for stitching. 

3. Finish those leggings for the granddaughters. I had the project scheduled during their visit. We, however, had the opportunity to go swimming and of course the water won out over stitching leggings! I have ripped the pink pair apart so that I can make them smaller.

4. Make a few border blocks for Frolic to see if I like my idea.

Sew these two pair of leggings
5. Keep up with the RSC and Temperature quilt challenge.

6. Think about designs for the next book club quilt.

7. Spend two days quilting charity quilts on Thomas for the CCQ guild.

I'm linking to Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework the challenge quilt, the tree skirt project and the legging project all contain scraps!

Regarding COVID:

Worldwide: 183M cases; 3.93M deaths

United States: 33.7M cases; 605K deaths

Oregon: 209K cases; 2,811 deaths

Last Tuesday, I went to my first in person small group meeting of my quilting book club. It was wonderful to see people in the flesh and to visit without looking at a screen! The visit ended all too soon! We are cautiously optimistic that we will meet in person again for the next reveal in three months. We do plan to continue meeting via Zoom the next two months.

Last Wednesday or June 30 in Oregon, the governor lifted most of the COVID restrictions. We don't have to wear a mask into a restaurant or wear one at the grocery store if you are vaccinated. The restrictions of how many people can gather has also been lifted. The Washington State governor also opened his state with similar cautions in place. People are exercising in gyms without being restricted to the number of people who can be in the space. At the hospital, we are still wearing masks as I believe it should be. 

Last week, I heard the media report that Oregon got to 70% of the population receiving at least one dose of the vaccine. When I wanted to confirm that number, I saw that the number was still 56%. The difference is that the 56% number includes people aged 12 and up; the 70% number includes adults. Other than the in person meet up, my routine has not changed.

Happy 4th. I hope you all will be safe and enjoying friends and family today. Because of the dry conditions, fireworks are banned in our area. Last night, however, I heard the booming sounds for about 45 minutes. There has been passionate rhetoric about how setting off fireworks is a way to honor our freedom. I hope the fireworks start no fires.