Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Greece--Day 11

First departure wave (Photo J. Callahan)
On our final morning, we left our penthouse. We said goodbye to Amanda and family at 6am. They were traveling from Athens, to London/Heathrow to Vancouver/Canada and then to Portland. They made all of their connections and had enough of a layover in Heathrow for James to taste a pint. They arrived at the Portland airport at 7:30pm.

We said goodbye to Nicole, Miss A and Nicole's partner at 9am. This goodbye is always hard especially now that Miss A is in the picture. We have plans to see one another at Thanksgiving. I was thinking about traveling at Christmas; or waiting until March for a visit. Now, I'll wait until after knee surgery.

Nicole and family left about noon. When they arrived at the airport, she received a message that her flight was delayed about an hour and a half. Miss A was busy during the delay; but, she slept most of the three hour flight to London. They arrived home about 6:30 and just in time to accept their grocery delivery!

Our taxi ride to the airport took about an hour. We checked ourselves and our bags in. Going through security was

A sample of some of the savory lounge food
uneventful. Then, because we have access to the lounge, we enjoyed one last snack in Greece before boarding our plane to Newark, New Jersey. The flight was about a half hour late leaving. It was a long flight and we were thankful we had booked extra leg room. We were seated at an exit so it was easy for us to get up every hour or so to stretch.

I slept parts of four hours on the ten hour flight. When we landed in Newark, we had a couple of hours. Unfortunately, it took about an hour for our bags to arrive. The line going through customs was so long; but, thanks to Nicole in addition to the lounge access, I also have gold status. Gold status means that I can go to a "special" line to by pass an extra long wait. Thankfully, we were able to recheck our bags on the way to catch the shuttle to a different concourse.

At the concourse, going back through security was crazy. It is set up so that you don't have space to strip off your shoes, take out your electrical devices, etc. Electrical devices can't touch one another and you can't have other items in the tub. What ends up happening is that someone else's items come between your items. Added to that, the security person questioned my cross body bag. I wasn't able to proceed

A sampling of the sweets

through the body scan until after my purse had been scanned.

Bob of course was through, redressed and waiting for me when I finally made it through the screening process. If there is a way to avoid Newark, I would if the future. While custodial, wheel chair transportation staff were friendly and helpful, the TSA staff were crabby and demanding. Perhaps, they were still recovering from the influx of Fourth of July travelers.

We thought that the flight to Portland would be boarding by the time we arrived at the gate; but, it was delayed. It seemed like a lot of flights were delayed that day so there were long lines of people waiting outside many gates. After seeing the amount of people on a "normal" day, I can't imagine what it must be like when there are serious weather delays.

We did board our plane and we left about 45 minutes late. The woman who sat next to us didn't speak English. Her daughter who was about 13 rows behind us came several times to check on her. I tried to help her with the audio equipment so she would have some inflight entertainment.

Greek coffee top, Starbucks coffee bottom

While I tried to stay awake on this leg of the journey, I did catch myself dozing a couple of times.

On this five hour and 20 minute flight, we could purchase food. We didn't. We took the savory snack and the two drinks that were offered to us. I think a flight that long should include a meal. When we flew from Denver to Newark on the way to Athens, we were served a meal. 

The flight was uneventful. The audio with the earbuds from the airlines wasn't good enough for me to decipher the dialog in a movie. I read instead. I started "A Long Walk to Freedom" an autobiography of Nelson Mandela. It's about 700 pages long and I still haven't finished it!

We landed about half an hour late; but, our bags arrived quickly. For once the priority bags, arrived first! There seemed to be a lot of people leaving the airport so traffic was extra heavy. Friend and neighbor Rod, arrived to pick us up. Home we went. We arrived about 11pm. 

It was a long day; but, to unwind, we unpacked. It was a great trip. We concurred that a full day of travel is hard on one's body!

The following day, I made a comparison of the Greek coffee that we had purchased on our trip with what we drink at home. The color of the coffee was different; but, both tasted great! This is my last post about our trip. It was fun to re live our activities. I wonder where we will travel in four years. . .it could be a destination within the continental United States. . . .or not! It will be interesting to read where people want to go!

Sunday, September 24, 2023

Christmas Stocking Repair, a Backing and a Finished Top

Supplies and the project
Soon after our daughters' births, my husband's grandmother (Doris McIntyre) knitted each of them a stocking which included their name. Now that our youngest daughter has a daughter of her own, it's time she hung her stocking in her own home. It's been waiting for a repair of the embellishments since last Christmas. She and her family are headed to our house for Thanksgiving so I no longer could procrastinate on making the repairs!

An area in need of repair
When I looked closely at the spaces in need of repair. I noted that every several beads, Doris had knotted the thread. The thread was ordinary sewing thread. To hold the sequins in place, she had inserted a bead in the center of each sequin. First, I searched YouTube for a tutorial on how to repair sequins on a knitted stocking. I found a helpful tutorial. In my stash, I have some Doris' beads. I even have a few of my friend Martha's sequins.

Another area in need of repair
In Martha's stash, I was able to select enough sequins. Unfortunately, I needed to buy beads. The match isn't perfect; but, it is close enough. The stocking is almost 39 years old! That I had any supplies which worked was miraculous! 

Repaired front
I spent a long evening making the repairs. accessing the beads in the beard area was tough. I marveled at how my husband's grandmother added all those sequins and beads as there are no side seams in the sock! Perhaps, she beaded as she knitted. 

Repaired back
Now the sock is ready for many more holidays. This was goal number one on my September list. It wasn't an awful a task as I had anticipated. I spent almost nine dollars on the beads! I enjoyed beading. Perhaps, I'll add them to future projects.

Completed back for Positively Grows top
I also stitched together the back for the Positively Grows quilt. I had also thought that I would prepare the binding; but, decided that I would wait until after it was quilted before I picked the binding. Making the back was goal number two on my September list. The two fabrics had been in my stash a long time. . .like at least a decade! I'm happy to have found a use for both of them! 

Finished top started last week
The house top that I blogged about last week, I finished. Thanks to Melisa over at Pinker n Punkin Quilting and Stitching, this project will be called Happy Homes. She said I had some Happy Homes in a comment, Happy Homes sounded liked a terrific name for the project! The top measurers about 67 inches by 70 inches. After I quilt about three projects, I'll figure out a backing.

I put away the scraps that littered every surface. The blue, black and yellow quart zip lock bags are overflowing; but, all the other bags are flat and ready for filling! I can close the lid of my "pre cuts" container without having to compress the contents! 

No yardage was cut in making this top. Martha who made many scrappy tops, would be impressed. If she were here, she would have liked the addition of the purple bonus pinwheels since purple was her favorite color. I like that I was able to sneak in three star blocks from the parts department.

Paper piecing stars for a Christmas stocking
Friday evening I began paper piecing blocks for a Christmas stocking. Again, I used scraps. The large star is three inches finished. The small stars are two inches finished. I plan to finish the stocking later today. I'm linking to Cynthia and Oh Scrap/Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework. Next week, I want to make even more progress on my September list as I did this week!

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Greece--Day 10

Miss J outside the archeological museum (Photo J. Callahan)

This morning, we enjoyed a cup of coffee, a slice of cheese with a slice of bread. On our final day, our first plan was to visit the National Archeological Museum. Not all of the group wanted to visit the museum so those that wanted to go went by taxi.

Exhibit at the war museum (Photo J. Callahan)
The most interesting exhibit at the museum was a copper fry pan. It was made about 300 B.C. Over time it was a beautiful blue and the design was coils. The inside of the pan was smooth. Amanda said that the person who used this beautiful dish must have had status. Perhaps, women were thought more highly of than we have been led to believe.

I always find the nails, fish hooks and pottery of interest. I marvel at how long it would take them to make something. They couldn't build a piece of furniture until they had made the nails. They couldn't catch fish, if they didn't have hooks. I enjoyed the designs on the pottery. Utilitarian items were beautified in some way. 

Getting ready to cut the linen fabric

After the museum, James and Miss J went to the War Museum. They met Bob and Nicole's partner. The rest of us took a walk to find the vinegar that we had tasted on the food tour. The guide had stated it was available in grocery stores and as a product of Naxos, we would be able to find it there. We didn't find it on Naxos.

We walked about half an hour and I said, I was ready for a cooling break. We stopped for a coffee and a pastry that we shared. The ice coffees were presented in a an artistic way. The fruit bar, while not Miss K's favorite was delicious. She preferred the chocolate cake with a gooey chocolate center. 

The grocery store that the tour guide recommended was closed. We went to a deli which had a lot of olive oil, marmalade, wine, sandwiches and bread for sale; but, no vinegar. Then we walked a bit further to the hotel where we had initially tasted the vinegar. We asked for a tasting so Miss K and Nicole could taste the vinegar. 

We received a tasting, Miss K wasn't that excited about it; but Nicole thought the vinegar we liked was good. Why we spent so much effort in capturing this vinegar is because it is unlike vinegar I've tasted before. Natives purchase this vinegar and sip it as an aperitif. It is mild and delicious.

At any rate, we were able to purchase several containers. As we meandered through the streets, we walked through some of the areas of our food tour. We were able to enjoy the spice market and the meat market for a second time. I'm glad we were able to share the experience with Nicole and Miss K!

Cutting the fabric

We decided it was time for lunch. Miss K wanted to eat in a park. Miss K and Nicole viewed the area and found a green space on the map. 

Fabrics cut and business name of the shop
Graphics on the menu--a potential quilt design

We decided that we would purchase something to take with us to eat in the park. If there was a shop that interested us--usually me--we went in. Often, the shop aisles were so narrow that only I went in. I shopped several household goods shops looking for a particular metal spatula. I didn't find what I was looking for; but, it was fun to look! 

We saw shops that contained embroidery supplies, bedding supplies and trim supplies. We crossed a street and in front of a shop were rolls of fabric! Of course, I had to go inside. Inside, there were even more rolls of sheer fabrics and laces. The shop was tiny. There was a table for cutting; but bolts of suiting fabrics were stacked on the end of it. There was one table that contained linen. 

When I saw the linen, I told Miss K to tell the others that I was spending money there! The owner didn't speak English and I don't speak Greek. I selected a fabric and showed him with my hands how much I wanted. He gave me a look of only that much? Then he brought me a meter stick and I showed him on the stick how much I wanted. 

He took the fabric and the stick to the cutting counter and with scissors cut my fabric. I selected a variety of colored linen. It is more of a light weight medium fabric. I hope it will work into a special memory project as I tried to purchase a color that each person in our group favored. Some favored the same color so I also purchased a few fabrics that would remind me of our trip. In all, I spent 16 Euros for eight pieces of linen that measure 10 1/2 inches by 58 inches. I figure if I need a background fabric, I can purchase that at one of my local fabric stores. I imagine the shop owner is still shaking his head at the crazy American woman's purchase!

Our last dinner together 

After my purchase, we saw another fabric store. This one had a manikin wearing a coat with a Burda pattern pinned to the front of the coat. I could see bolts of fabric; but, we didn't go in. I was happy with my purchase.

Last day of Fanta drinks (Photo A. Callahan)
We walked a bit more and encountered the pie shop where we went for our first stop on the food tour. I asked if we wanted to purchase some hand pies here to take to the park. The cheese pie that was our favorite was out; but, we did purchase a spinach pie and a chicken pie. We also purchased a sausage roll and a cheese roll. All were good. Each of us had a favorite. Miss K and Ada liked the cheese roll, Amanda liked the chicken pie, Nicole liked the sausage roll and I liked the spinach pie. 

Pork dinner (Photo A. Callahan)
We did eat our lunch in the park; but, it was a green space which didn't include any equipment for kids. No play equipment was a disappointment for Miss K! From there, we took a taxi back to our penthouse.

The Mountain  (Photo A. Callahan)
For our final dinner, Nicole googled grills that were within a ten minute walk. She found two possibilities. The first wasn't open; but, the second was a great spot. We ordered a couple salads to share as appetizers. James ordered pork as a dinner, Amanda ordered pork that came wrapped in a pita, Miss J ordered a chicken skewer. Miss K ordered the mini burgers or sliders. Bob, Nicole and I ordered "The Mountain" which was a pork sausage, with chicken and pork kebabs, shaved chicken and pork with pita bread and fries. It easily would have fed four to five people. It was a great meal to end our stay in Athens.

Sunday, September 17, 2023

Progress on House Blocks

9/8 A starting point of the blocks 
Goal number ten on my September list was to work on the top for my next book club quilt. I'm using house blocks that my friend Martha had in her stash. The reveal is at the end of the month. I am so behind in the quilting part of the process; but, I thought I might be able to make the top by the end of the month. 

Turning the blocks on point into squares evening of 9/8
Inspiration behind this project is the book, "Strangers in the Night" by Pat Rushford. The main character in the book is contemplating purchasing an abandoned town and turning it into an artist colony. There is a murder, several secrets and a love interest. It was a fun read. 

Playing with the layout. Adding more "parts" morning 9/10
Cynthia Brunz from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework, spoke at the Mt. Hood Quilt Guild on September 7. Her lecture inspired me to make more of an effort to use my strips and squares that I've cut from the leftovers as I've finished projects. 

Close up of the string piecing mid day 9/10

Finally, Alvera from Project Linus shared a challenge she gave the volunteers. She gave them some orphan blocks and asked participants to make a quilt using the Wanderer's Wife quilt by Jen Kingwell as inspiration for the layout. I pulled "parts" or leftover blocks from the parts department. I auditioned these parts next to some of the house blocks. Martha loved purple. The purple pinwheels are bonus blocks made around 2000. I decided using the parts was better than storing them!

Progress by the end of the day 9/10
Members of one of my small groups made the house blocks for Martha, when she turned 70 in 2013. Five of the twelve blocks contain the maker's name. I shared the blocks at our monthly Zoom quilt day; but, no one remembered if they had contributed blocks or not! No two blocks measured the same size. There was no color parameters either. All Martha requested was that the house be wonky!

Progress beginning 9/11
I started with turning the blocks on point into squares. Next, I concentrated on building the left side of the top. Each day I spent on the project, I tried to at least take one photo of my progress each day. Some days, I took more photos!

Progress at the end of 9/11
I found it helpful to lay the strips in place and to stand back to view the values and contrast. Sometimes, I moved blocks into different areas on the design board. Sometimes, I didn't have quite enough fabric to use in the space I needed to fill. I either chose a different fabric or I changed the size of the space. 

Completing the second "column" 9/15
It's been enjoyable putting these blocks together. Martha would be happy with me finishing her blocks. She would be applauding me for all the scraps I have used. She also would be laughing because when we sewed together, I lacked the skills and the confidence to use scraps. The more I do it, the easier it becomes.

Progress at the end of 9/16
Perhaps, by the end of today, I'll be closer to a finished top! Linking up to Oh Scrap!

Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Greece- Day 9

Sunrise on our final morning in Naxos

I was enjoying the morning sunrise when I heard the downstairs door open and footsteps coming up the stairs. The woman who cleaned the villa was standing in the entry way. Whew! That uneasy feeling melted from my body!! She thought the house was empty. 

Our problem was she spoke no English and I spoke no Greek! The solution, google translate. We used it to let her know our reservation ended at 11:00a.m. She asked if there were any problems. I reported the issue with the coffee pot. Plugging the pot into the electrical socket caused the breakers in the kitchen to shut off. We had planned one last pool swim. The cleaner, however, had already taken our pool towels so there was no more swimming in that beautiful pool. The silver lining to not swimming was that we didn't have a wet suit to pack!

Waiting in the shade for the Ferry
For breakfast we used up as many of the supplies in the fridge as possible. I made Paninis. Some just had meat, some just cheese, some had both! Miss K and I had the first paninis. Miss J ate two while her dad, James ate none.  He preferred to eat the last of the yogurt. The paninis were the better choice. 

Signage to welcome the public to the restaurant
Everyone finished packing as this was our last day in Naxos. Then James took Bob, the luggage, and I to the port. We left three hours before our ferry was to depart  because it was rush hour on the island. There was so much traffic at one intersection that it took James five minutes to get though it. James dropped us off and we found a bench in the shade. Bob and I played cribbage. I lost. I lose most of the time. This time, however, I wasn't skunked. It was a close game. I was one hole away from winning; but, he managed to come from behind to win. I said good game and the second wake of Amanda, Miss K, Miss J, and more luggage arrived.

Wall art
They went shopping for souvenirs. Miss K bought a  hat Miss K. Miss J purchased a bag and a cat shot glass. They both bought magnets for their friends.Then the last wave of James, Nicole, Miss A, and Nicole's partner arrived. It takes planning to get nine people from place to place! 

Wall decor in the seating area of the restaurant
Next, Nicole's partner purchased drinks for the family. I received a cold coconut milk latte, the girls received their usual--orange Fanta. Nicole, Bob, and Amanda received an iced milk latte. Nicole's partner drank a Red Bull.

Possible quilting motifs on a gate
Then we walked through the shops with Amanda, Nicole, Miss Ada, Miss K, Miss J, James. I too walked around the area a bit and saw some interesting wall art advertising a restaurant. The boy with the cake is life sized. I got a kick out of the yellow bicycle adorning a window box in the outdoor seating area of the restaurant.I also took a few photos that reminded me of quilting. After shopping, we picked out an ice cream. Miss J and Nicole's partner are fruit flavored push pops. James ate an Oreo Pop, Miss K ate a vanilla king cone, and Nicole ate a Magnum almond popsicle. 

Accent on top of a wall. . .another quilting motif
The ferry was about half an hour late. Even so, people getting off at the stop and people getting on at the stop takes about 15 minutes. Staff have the embarkment/disembarkment process well practiced. Finally, we boarded the boat, the crowd was big. The baggage area for Athens was off the racks! We stowed our bags in the Athens area and found our seats. Miss A was not having it to sit. So Nicole, Nicole's partner and I walked Miss A around the ferry. She smiled at lots of people, made a friend with a little girl about her age and kept us all busy on the three hour ride to Athens.

Miss J enjoying the view from the deck of the ferry (Photo J. Callahan)
Disembarking was okay. We were able to wade through the masses to collect our bags and depart the ferry. Our transportation was waiting for us. Transportation was part of the rental where we would stay. Our rental was a penthouse. It was spacious at about 1600 square feet. It had balconies on two sides so you could view the city. 

Stuffed tomato and green pepper
After we had unloaded and changed. We took taxis to dinner. We ate at the Lemon Tree which one of Nicole's friends had made reservations for us. I had anticipated this dinner because V, had been friends with Nicole for about 11 years. They met on a tour the first solo trip Nicole made to Greece. They hit it off so well that they did a number of activities together. They have stayed in touch over the years and say that when they get a chance to be together, it is as if no time has passed between them.

Port braised in lemon sauce
V was born in Boston to two Greek parents. He grew up in South Africa where his dad worked. He says he was always one hundred percent Greek and wanted to return to Greece. He became a lawyer and works in Athens at the Dutch embassy. He could be the persona for tourism in Greece.

Chicken and fries
When we decided Greece was our destination, V sent Nicole all sorts of links to activities, cultural experiences and island information for us to review. He even updated the list several times! Meeting him and sharing dinner with him was a highlight of my time in Greece.

Tile in the bathroom--quilting motif
He helped us order and we were able to try some of the dishes of the day. The specials were handwritten in Greek only. We ate eggplant stuffed with feta, stuffed green pepper and stuffed tomato with a savory risotto, and pork braised in a lemon sauce. For appetizers we ordered a Greek salad, a rusk salad--the rusk was a special dark bread crouton buried in lettuce, tomato and feta covered with a flavorful balsamic vinegar and oil dressing. In addition to the salads, we also ordered a lot of appetizers: zucchini balls, fish cakes and octopus marinated in vinegar with a sea pickle. The sea pickle was salty and reminded me a bit of kelp. The zucchini balls were the best that I had eaten. They were so delicious that we ordered a second! The balls were deep fried; but, light, moist and yet contained a bit of a cucumber like crunch. 

City view from the deck of the penthouse 
Olive oil toasted bread was also brought to our table. After dinner, we were presented with a mosaic cake which was so rich and absolutely delicious. The dessert was a gift for us coming to eat that evening!

It was a great way to end the day.

(Miss K wrote the majority of this post.)

Sunday, September 10, 2023

Sleepover Number 2 and Sleepover Number 3

Sewing with the Zoom group
Last month, our oldest granddaughter arrived for a sleepover. Earlier in the week she had called with her meal choices. Her requests were sourdough pancakes, overnight French toast for breakfast. Chicken noodle soup for lunch, Papa's spaghetti and Papa's burgers for the dinners. It is always interesting to receive the grandchildren's menu requests. Chicken noodle soup, Papa's spaghetti and sourdough pancakes are the most requested.

Making hot cocoa
When she arrived in the afternoon, she and Papa played cribbage. After our spaghetti dinner, she worked on her string top. Since it was a Friday, she joined the Friday Sit and Sew group. She got a kick out of stitching with the other ladies. Her comment was, "You do this every Friday? It is sort of fun." Ha. . .just because one has white hair, one can still have fun!!!

Finished top
She started this top in 2021 because she was intrigued with string piecing the blocks in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color of the month. I had stitched two months; but, she stitched the rest. At a previous time together, she had stitched the blocks into rows and had begun stitching the rows together. We stitched a couple more rows together
before it was time for bed.

In the morning, she made a cup of hot cocoa as well as the pancakes. After breakfast, we worked some more on stitching rows together. We took a break to attend the neighborhood block party. 

Riding a pool toy
Then we stitched a few more rows together. For a break, she picked out some backing fabric. We were still full from the potluck at the block party so leftover chicken soup was the right dinner! We made overnight French toast and placed it in the refrigerator. She likes me to tell historical fiction stories at bedtime. The following day, she will pick out the fiction parts and ask about the historical facts. I get such a kick out of her comments like, "My mama did THAT?"

The second morning, we baked our French toast. It was delicious! We also had bacon and blueberries to eat too. After breakfast, we finished sewing the top together. We finished just as her mama pulled in the driveway to pick her up! 

Her mama snapped a photo of Miss K with her finished top. I said I would press the seam for her. 

Lounging on a poot mat
The next time we are together, we will layout the top and measure it. We will also check to see if the backing fabrics are enough. She was so tickled to have finished the top!

Last weekend, my friend, Wendy, invited the girls to swim in her pool with her two granddaughters that are about the same age as my granddaughters. My granddaughters wanted to swim and they received the okay to have an overnight. 

They arrived just in time to head to the pool. We swam. It was a good opportunity to introduce our grandchildren. . .they are so similar in their likes and dislikes. I hope that they will become more comfortable with each other. They were all sort of shy!

Chicken noodle soup lunch
After swimming, we had chicken noodle soup. No leftovers were left behind which was good! We also had carrot sticks, apple slices with peanut butter. After lunch, the girls played a game of "Don't Spill the Beans." I was resting in my chair. . .next, I heard raised voices over who was hogging the quilt. Turns out, I snoozed and they felt they needed a snooze. At this house, one doesn't have to share a quilt as there is a whole cupboard of ones to wrap around yourself. Once the quilt issue was sorted, the house was quiet for about three hours!

Making the batter for mug cakes
One weekend activity was to make microwave chocolate mug cake. They loved this activity. Miss J made her cake and her papa's cake. Miss A made her cake and mine. We mixed the batter in a small bowl and poured it into the cup. It was delicious cake. 

The chosen block
The other weekend activity was quilt related. I gave them the choice of designing a cradle quilt or a baby quilt. The cradle quilt will be sent to Carol in North Carolina as part of an outreach program between stuffed bear makers, woodworkers and quilters. The folks make a wooden toy that includes a bear wrapped in a quilt. At Christmas, a child will receive the handmade bundle. These quilts need to be no larger than 18 inches. The baby quilt is for a woman having a baby at the end of October. It is important that the grandchildren practice giving to help brighten someone's day.

Auditioning the outer border
They decided to design a cradle quilt. Miss J ended up snoozing through most of the process. Miss K picked a block that I had made a long time ago. It has been living in the "parts department" for years! It was an extra block from "The Road Home" quilt. We picked border, binding and backing fabrics. We spent a little time that evening and the next day sewing. Miss K was quite perturbed that the time to go home came before she was able to finish increasing the size of the block to 18 inches!

The outer border is the wrong side of the fabric. The binding is the right side of the fabric. Miss J thought the wrong side of the fabric looked best as the outer border. 
Auditioning the borders
Dinner was Papa's hamburgers and tater tots. After we had cleaned the kitchen from dinner, we ate our mug cakes and made the batter for the sourdough pancakes. Miss K made and cooked all of the pancakes Sunday morning. I didn't help flipping any pancakes this time! It was a fun to have a sleepover. I hope we get another one scheduled soon!

Aqua/Teal nine patches
After the granddaughters went home, I finished sewing the little top. I cut the binding and the backing. I also worked on a second cradle top. Again this one started with leftovers from the "parts department." This time the nine patches were from my Chilhowie quilt. I didn't have enough; so I sewed more! Since teal/aqua is the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color this month, my blocks fit right in! I'm linking to Angela at her "SoScrappy" blog. This is the first month, I've participated this year. Maybe it won't be my last!

 Nine patch within nine patch
I looked through my 3 1/2 inch purple scrap fabrics and found enough purples to stitch four nine patches. I chain pieced each block.

Finished block
Next, I sewed the blocks together. I also cut binding and pieced the back for the project. 

Finished 18 inch top
By then, the day was over. On Monday, I layered and basted the two tops. I started the quilting process.

Finished Road Home block front
On Tuesday, I quilted both little quilts. For the Road Home block, I stitched in the ditch. Then, I quilted diagonally in both directions with a monofilament thread. I love the texture quilting diagonal lines created. I free motion quilted this piece with a ruler and ruler foot. For the Nine Patch quilt, I used the walking foot. I also stitched in the ditch. I eyeballed a straight line through the purple squares. I found that when I looked ahead to the intersection of the purple square to the nine patch, I sewed straight. I created a different grid. I had this project quilted in about an hour! I used the monofilament in the needle and a purple cotton thread in the bobbin for both projects.

Back of Road Home cradle quilt
On Wednesday, I finished sewing the bindings. Yesterday, I asked Carol the best method to send the quilts to her. She suggested a Tvyvek envelope. I went to the post office and asked the clerk. She suggested a small priority envelope. I was able to squeeze both quilts into the envelope. Monday or Tuesday, I'll mail the package! 

 Finished front of non patch quilt
While all the fabric came from scraps, I figure that I used about a yard for both quilts. This brings my total of yardage used from my stash to 20 1/2 yards! Because this little finish is aqua/teal and because it is planned to help a stuffed bear sleep well, it also meets Joy's rules at The Joyful Quilter for her little challenge. The challenge letter this project fits this month is the letter Z for ZZZZZzzzz. . . snoozing! At the end of the month, I'll be linking to her! 

Finished back of second quilt
In the meantime, this post takes care of goals number nine and eleven on my September list! I'm linking to Cynthia at Oh Scrap/Quilting is More Fun Than Housework. She was the speaker at the Mt. Hood Quilt guild on Thursday evening. She talked about scraps and scrap quilts. It was an inspiring presentation!