Sunday, October 16, 2022

Third Quarter Recap and Going Dark. . . Maybe

Lone star quilting in process
My third quarter goals were:

1. Clean and organize my studio. I thought that I could do this in a month. I rather doubt that I can do it in a quarter; but, I plan to make a little progress each week.

2. Keep up with the blocks in the Temperature quilt for 2022. It takes me about two hours to put one block into the top. I have four rows to add to the top. I didn't add those rows as I started because I thought it would be easier to add two rows each month once I got to July than it would be to add one block at a time. I have learned it is easier to add more block at a time. This will be my TV project.

✔3. Finish the 2022 Bonnie Hunter Mystery--I'm down to the binding, sleeve and label. This is one that I want to give to a four time bronze star Vietnam Veteran. I would like to give it as a Quilt of Valor. I need to reach out to the contact near me and learn what the steps are to complete this task.

A portion of the completed studio clean up
✔4. Begin quilting the Lone Star quilt. It is ready to be quilted. I need to get started on it! Perhaps, this will be my August monthly goal---to ditch quilt it.

5. Help my granddaughter finish her project. I learned earlier this week that the gal where I was longarming, is no longer renting her machine. Perhaps, using the walking foot on my domestic machine will work out for her. She is eight and it will be important that she make progress quickly.

✔6. Help my eight year old granddaughter make a swimsuit. My granddaughter didn't stitch her suit. I decided if the suit was to be used this year, I'd better stitch it myself. 

Book club project 
✔7. Fully finish the cross stitch projects I began in London. One will be a Christmas ornament and the other. . .was destined to be a refrigerator ornament. .  .maybe it will
and maybe it will become something else.

✔8. Catch up with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. I enjoy looking through my scraps and coming up with the blocks. Some months, I "get" to stretch myself because I have little in that color way! Yesterday, I finished  cutting the colored pieces for the months that I'm behind. Before I left on my trip, I cut all the backgrounds. Now, I have "kits" to sew one of these days!

I had a great quarter and had I not been rear ended on September ninth, I likely would have made even more progress. At the beginning of September, I began planning my fourth quarter goals.

My Fourth Quarter goals are were:
1. Finish quilting the Lone Star Quilt. 
2. Continue with my studio reorganize. I started this project in July and it's been a long arduous journey. There will be "thinning"; but, for this first pass it's all about excavation!
Make a quilt out of some of these flannel scraps
3. Finish the Book club quilt
4. Help my granddaughters make progress on their quilt projects. These are the churn dash top and the Rainbow Scrap Challenge string blocks.

5. Make a couple swimsuits for myself.
6. Make a flannel baby quilt from Martha's scraps.
7. Post about the guild challenge project.
8. Determine the block for the RSC for 2023 as well as a temperature block.

Guild challenge
Since my car accident, I have been unable to machine stitch. I can't sit at the machine and hold my arms to feed fabric without causing neck and back pain. I am slowly improving. Some days, I'm able to live with the headache pain without Alleve. The numbness in my fingers and thumbs is less noticeable. Last week, I had an acupuncture treatment and a cold laser treatment during my last chiropractic appointment. All have been helpful in a small way. While the improvements are heartening, I'm not stitching. If I'm not stitching, I'm not able to move toward my goals which is so disheartening. 

So. . .I'm not making any fourth quarter goals. Gertie, my inner squirrel, has hibernated. Other than my temperature quilt which I can work on each day as a hand project, nothing is happening on the sewing front. Sigh. . . .

Earlier this week, I decided to take a break from posting on my blog because there is so little "material" to share. I was sad to be going dark. I planned to continue reading blogs and leaving comments as that is a great way to stay connected to the quilting community. Bonnie Hunter will releasing the fabric colors for her next mystery soon. I sure want to participate in that mystery. 

I had hope to return in a couple of months as I'm determined to machine quilt and piece again! This morning, however, I felt a bit of a spark. Yesterday, I traveled about two hours to watch our alma mater play a football game. After the game, we drove home. It was a long day; however, I am only a bit more sore than I am on any other day. Perhaps, there is a chance that I can be successful at machine sewing in the next week or two. I'm willing to try. 

I do have one more post that I can write about a project I finished in August; but, couldn't share until after next week. Let's see what happens. Fingers crossed!!!!

In the meantime, I'm linking up to Cynthia and Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework.

Sunday, October 9, 2022

I Met Cynthia. . .

A modern quilt at the show
Last Sunday, I attended the Westside Quilters "A Quilted Paradise" show. From where I live, it was an hour drive to the show. My husband offered to drive. I took him up on his offer. I used an ice pack on the way there which helped with pain management. We arrived as the show opened.

It was great to walk through the aisles and see over 150 beautiful quilts. I found that I couldn't stop to read the signage on the quilts because the pain across my back, up my neck and into one shoulder would engage. My daughter wanted proof I saw quilts so my husband snapped a photo in front of this one.

I was really bad. . .I forgot to ask him to photograph the signage so I could attribute the maker. If you attended the show and know, please message me. I will add the information to this post. I liked the modern feel of the piece.

Next, I worked my way to vendor Cynthia Bunz's booth. I've followed Cynthia for years via her blog, Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework. For at least the last couple of

Cynthia and me in front of her booth

years, I've participated in her Oh Scrap link up on Saturdays. Cynthia is a master of using every scrap. She is generous with her knowledge and so supportive. 

She's been working on the scrappy paper pieced banner for a number of months. Getting to see the banner in person was extra special! I got to see many of her patterns up close and personal too. The absolute best part was meeting her in person. 

She agreed to have a photograph with me. While I had fully intended to thank her in person for inspiring me to play with scraps, I totally forgot! I attribute forgetting to being tongue tied around a celebrity! I'm really glad to have met her in the flesh!

We left soon after meeting Cynthia. My ice pack was still a little cool so I used it on the way home. I was sore the next day; but, my pain level wasn't any greater than it was before I went. 

It's been a month since I was last able to sit at a machine and stitch. This week, I have an acupuncture appointment to calm the nerves in my neck to encourage the muscles to stop going into a spasm. I hope acupuncture works. I so miss machine stitching!

Sunday, October 2, 2022

September Recap and October Goals

Leader ender stacks
My September goals were:

✔1. Write one post about the the Ottolenghi recipes that I've been making.
2. Finish the quilting on my Lone Star Quilt which may not happen; but if I can get the bones of the quilting completed, I'll be happy.
3. Get the book club quilt for our current book to the embellishment stage.
4. Keep up with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. The color this month is light blue. 
✔5. Write a post about the 2022 Temperature quilt blocks. Keep up with the blocks for this project.
✔6. Inventory the contents of one of the tubs that I've stuffed with projects. This is my organizing project for the month.
7. Choose one of those projects to move forward.

Block in construction
On September ninth, I was rear ended in a car accident. On September 29, I posted about my recovery process. I haven't machine pieced or quilted since September eighth. Consequently, meeting my September goals took a hit. 

I was making good progress on the Lone Star Quilt and was choosing the background for my book club quilt. I did choose a project to move forward; but, I had also planned to make progress on that project before the end of the month. My light blue blocks for the RSC are in the same position they were before the accident. Big sigh. . . 

I did help 51 participants earn their American Heart Basic Life Support CPR certifications. I also helped two participants earn their American Red Cross First Aid/Adult and Pediatric CPR/AED certificates. 

Block layout option
I read one book--I had it three quarters read before my accident. I read "Where the Forest Meets the Stars" by Glendy Vanderah.

For October, I thought about making a list of goals; but, decided against it. Since I have so much dang back pain and finger numbness, I am doubtful that I would feel like my previous self in time to make progress on a list. Not being able to work on goals, makes me feel sad. 

Instead, I'll continue to concentrate on healing. Yesterday, I spent some time piecing on my Temperature quilt. I don't feel worse for the experience today so that is encouraging! Perhaps, I'll be able to continue working on that project this month.  
Another block layout option

Today, I'm attending the Westside Quilter's quilt show. The location of the show is about an hour away from where I live. I'm going for a couple of reasons. One I've wanted to meet Cynthia of Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework for years and she is vending at that show.  She has inspired me to create with scraps. I've wanted to thank her in person. Fingers crossed that I will thank her today!

Second, I want to see how my body handles traveling longer than half an hour in the car. I will have my ice pack to start! If I do okay, I might feel like I can handle attending a football game.

I'll leave you with the last bit of scrappiness that I started before the car accident. The photos are of Bonnie Hunter's Leader/Ender project for this year. This one is called Triple Treat. She releases a project in July and you make bits that eventually turn into blocks. When you make enough blocks for a project, you complete the top. 

I thought about using this block as my Rainbow Scrap Challenge for next year. I have too many bold print scraps that have inhabited the scrap storage for too long and this block might be the perfect place to use them.