Monday, January 26, 2009


Why do I say I really love St. George?? Because of the lack of snow! We returned today from the tundra a/k/a Salt Lake City. We encountered a snow storm that we weren't planning on. We sloshed and slid our way back down I-15 realizing that I can stand the summers if I don't have to deal with snow ever again. The purpose of the trip was to see our newest little grandson Beckett. Here he is getting spoiled by Grandpa. He is the cutest little redhead and is loved by all.

Saturday was also his big brother Finn's birthday #5. He is quite the big shot now. He showed us lots of his toys and books and told us all about his adventures at his new school Rowland Hall. His dad - our son David - teaches first grade there and Finn loves going to school with Dad each day and complains if he is picked up too early! I think Finn may grow up to be a meterologist as he can quote anything and everything about tornados in "America's Heartland"! He is quite the guy. Wish they lived closer.

Sunday morning was spent at the weekly broadcast of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. I wish we could attend every week. If we could, I think I would just call that my church attendance for the week!

Sunday afternoon we traveled down to Highland to stay with some dear friends that we have known for years. We have been practically family for over 20 years and have adopted their kids as our grandkids. We lived near each other in Connecticut and were excited when they followed us out here a year after we moved. Just as we were arriving at their home, the snow started! Horrors!! Its been 10 years since we negotiated driving in snow! When we dug out this morning and began the trek back to St. George, we soon discovered our window washer fluid reservoir was empty and our wipers blades had given up the ghost - no doubt because of the sun in St. George! We stopped to get some new fluid to put in the tank, but the entire line was frozen and the fluid was not going to work. We had snow the entire way down until about 10 miles outside St. George. We decided to make a quick stop at Costco and lo and behold - the fluid started flowing. Ah yes, we love St. George!! I was glad I had some handwork to occupy the time while Paul had the job of getting us home safely. I was able to complete about 40 yo-yo's! I don't know why I need another project, but I am make these little yo-yo's for an elephant made with them. I think I am avoiding the 15+ quilts that need binding. At least it kept my mind occupied and kept my eyes off the road and the big trucks that I thought for sure would run us off the road!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Today is a very memorable day for our country. A new President has been sworn in. We saw on TV our government running so smoothly - at least from our vantage point. So many countries change Presidents as often as they change socks and have demonstrations and riots in protest. We are so fortunate to have some brilliant men and women working on our behalf and our safety. Although the outgoing President has received much critisism, he still has many things he will be remembered for but it may take some time for the bitterness of some to go away. No matter what our political affiliation is we need to be supportive of this new President and give him a chance to deal with some real problems.

We were living in Washington D.C. when Jimmy Carter was inaugurated. Since it was such a frigid day and we had just moved to DC 3 weeks prior from California, we just couldn't take the cold! Washington was an exciting busy place to live as there was always something happening - good and evil! We enjoyed our time there and have many memories of learning about our country, visiting lots of museums, meeting interesting people from all over the world. Our childrens' school had many from other lands whose parents were living there while on assignments from their governments and each year had a fabulous International Festival.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Mmmmmm good!

Each month our Enrichment cooking group meets to learn new skills and share ideas and of course lots of talking and laughing. Last night was our annual kick-off meeting when we have a potluck at Katie's house and ooh and ahh at each others creations. This time was no exception and lots of wonderful creations were presented along with recipes. I think the favorite was the Curried Chicken with brown rice made by Leslie. After dinner we were all given a list of suggested topics for the coming year and people signed up for what they wanted to do in their homes. I picked October where I will teach 2 methods of brining a turkey. Some of the topics are: Pillsbury Bake Off recipes; grilling; soups/chowders; making a mix from ground wheat (yuck); appetizers; summer drinks, etc. etc. It is a nice group of women with great talents. Our fearless leader is a Martha Stewart wannabe and she really inspires us to do our best.

Here is the wonderful spread of tasty dishes. My contribution of apple dumplings made with crescent rolls is on the left next to the Cool Whip can.

Above is my neighbor Loretta who by the way is a wonderful quilting friend

Dixie Larkin standing guard over the lemonade.

Cristy Christiansen with her usual smiling face and infectious laugh! You always know when she is in the room. Cristy and her family live part time in Colorado and part time in St. George. They have business ventures in both places. We really like it when she comes back to St. George and joins in the activities. This time they are actually here because of medical reasons.

Thursday, January 15, 2009


I finished this mystery quilt in record time. I wanted to get it machine quilted at one of our local quilt shops (Quilted Works) while I had a valid coupon for a nice discount. I was also fortunate to get it to them on a slow day and I had this quilt back within 48 hours. Now that's the kind of turn-around time I like (as long as it is a good job - and it was) Of course this quilt has not had the binding put on as yet and who knows when that will happen! At least there is another project nearly done! Its a good thing!!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Today I visited my friends' new quilt store in Hurricane for the third time, but this was the official Grand Opening. It is called "The Quilt Cottage". What a comfy place to shop and visit. I don't think I've ever been in a quilt store when I didn't run into someone I know. This cute shop is busy getting their shelves filled with lots of the newest lines of fabric. They are only held back because the manufacturers have their own time schedule! The owners, Lynette, Wendy and Sariah have done an amazing job renovating with this 'ol house. They literally moved walls, built walls, painted, put in new flooring and the list goes on. The one great thing they have done is created a huge classroom/kitchen from the attached garage. I think the square footage of the classroom is as large as the entire house. They have decorated in such a fashion that you feel like you are at home. Congratulations to the 3 owners and we'll do all we can to help support you in this rotten economy. By the way, all of the owners have been closely associated with different aspects of real estate and we know which direction that has gone! They are a good example of "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade". No pun intended Wendy! (her last name is Lemmon)

This is the book recently released by C&T Publishing written by Lynette's sister Helen. I shopped today for the rest of the fabric I need to start this project (like I need another project!) Below is one named "Twilight" made by Lynette. I wonder what books she has been reading??

Here is Sariah busy cutting fabric while on her lunch break from her "real job"! She is a real estate agent along with being a quilt shop co-owner.

I also found a great fabric to make my 3rd "One For The Money" quilt which only requires one - yes one fabric! This one will be a lap quilt and the other 2 are wallhangings which I will post in a couple of days. I'm using a pattern from I really like Ann's patterns. When I saw the fabric I knew it was "the one", but I didn't know how much to purchase. I got on the store's laptop, went to Ann's website and called her. She was very accommodating and I was able to make my purchase without the pattern in hand. Aren't quilters great??

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


My cute 10 yr. old granddaughter Hannah said she wanted to make a quilt to enter in the upcoming quilt show. So I let her go shopping in my fabric closet and she picked out great combinations! She has done about 99% of the quilt by herself - even the rotary cutting. A couple of years ago I purchased a Klutz glove after someone in a class I was attending cut right through her hand. Needless to say, I've never used it but I did pull it out for Hannah's project. Her quilt top is complete and ready to be quilted. Unfortunately I have introduced her to "quilting by check" at an early age, but that's the way I do it! She is still tossing around some names for the quilt. I think she will be a winner at the quilt show in April don't you??? It is my thought that if the art of quilting is going to survive, "each one teach one" will need to be continued by us oldies but goodies! I was glad to hear that our local schools incorporate quilting in their home economics classes and that a couple of the schools have long arm machines!


Yesterday I spent many hours at the Innova Long Arm Training Center quilting away on this monster quilt. Since it was my first time at this adventure, I took a quilt that I figured I would never show to anyone! I made every "artistic" mistake possible. I sewed an entire row with no bobbin thread; went over designs twice many times (I call it thread art); ran out of bobbin thread six inches before the last row was finished, etc. etc. Since I was using a pantograph and couldn't see how it was doing on the other side of the machine, I was flying blind! I made loops when there should have been points, I overlapped the big loops, I accidently pushed the green button when draging the machine back across the quilt and guess what - it made a new quilting design! Glad there was a seam ripper handy. After it was all said and done, it doesn't look bad for a first time. When I got home after 6 fun filled hours, I went straight for the Advil, dinner and bed. It is hard work! I really can appreciate what the longarmers go through. I had won 8 hours of time on the machine as a door prize and guess what??? Teryl awarded me another 8 hours for giving her a referral! She knows that if I give it another try, I'll eventually catch on! I would like to be able to have my quilts done faster, but they will only be limited to non-heirlooms! Thanks Teryl and Jeryl for the encouragement and LOTS of help. I have been trying to use up stash and this quilt is from that category. In case you ever want to try your hand at using a long arm machine, Teryl rents out time on the machines -

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Every New Year's Eve someone in cyberworld conducts a mystery project. I have only participated in one before and as a rule I don't like mystery quilts. Simply because I can't stand the mystery part! I don't want to waste fabric and end up with something I don't like. However, this year I broke down and decided to participate in one and consider it a stash buster project with fabric I have no plans for. A couple of weeks ago the hostess gave us the fabric requirements and some pre-sewing instructions - tons of HST's!! Unfortunately I didn't heed her advice and left them until I started - today! Notice I said today and not New Years Eve! That day was filled with last minute year end duties, lunch at Red Robin with grandchildren and early to bed after viewing the "Children's Fireworks" from my sewing room window. Our City does 2 sessions of fireworks - one early and one at midnight. In fact, I think the Children's Fireworks are actually for all the Senior Citizens that reside in our town!

I printed all 10 clues from the internet and have been busy today cutting out and making the HST's - tons! I am posting pictures of my favorite method of making many of these little stinkers! Well, I use this method if I am making 8 or more. I take the finished size, add 1", multiply that by 2 and add 1/4". I then cut a square of that number - actually 2 squares, both of which make up the HST. In the photo I show how I mark it, sew it, cut it, then press to the dark (as usual) and then trim up with my bias square ruler. I now have made about 150 of them today. Pretty speedy accurate method - most importantly they are accurate after trimmed. Its times like this I'm grateful for some great tool, mainly the Shape Cut, Bias Square and my revolving cutting mat and needless to say, a very sharp rotary cutter! I am also adding pictures of possible layouts of this mystery quilt. I don't know which one to pick and I don't know when it will be finished. I can assume it will be a long time, but I need to write myself a note as to which layout I decide on so I won't forget what this project was. The memory is going!!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Dixie Quilt Guild Meeting - January, 2009

Yesterday's quilt guild meeting was especially good - lots of valuable information given and beautiful quilts for Show 'n Tell. The first part of the program was presented by Bob and Heather Purcell, the owners of Superior Threads which is located in our town. We are really fortunate to have them as members of our guild as we get good first hand information and sneak previews of great things coming! Superior Threads has decided to make a DVD containing an abundance of information as well as dispelling thread myths! Our guild was their audience for the taping. I have heard this presentation several times and each time hear something new. One thing that was new to me is that metallic needles and topstitch needles are exactly the same. What a revelation as now I won't have to be so fussy about which needle to use and when! Another thing I absorbed was the cost of a spool vs. a cone. A cone costs about 50% more than a spool but tons more thread. I always buy cones but never realized the savings. A cone seems to last forever! I also learned that nearly all sewing problems can be solved with either changing to a topstitch needle, adjusting the tension and picking the right threads. As Bob said - "The world sews, America quilts". Sewing machines are manufactured with the "world" in mind, therefore no doubt tensions will have to be adjusted for "quilting" with non-standard sized threads. Thanks to Bob and Heather for this great presentation and thanks especially for bringing us this wonderful Egyptian grown Extra Long Staple thread all the way from Japan. Love it!

I am a big believer in quality thread and Superior's entire line of threads takes all the guesswork out for me. I read a lot of internet posts and many people are always discussing the pros and cons of different threads. I just want to shout "choose Superior and just get on". Also many people are concerned with price and I too went through that phase, but after realizing how much work goes into my projects as well as the high price of fabric, why would I choose an inferior product. Yes, perhaps Superior is the "Rolls Royce" as Bob put it, but I want my quilts to be as good as they can be. So many of the top name quilters in the industry have lent their names to the different lines of Superior Threads. I remember being with Ricky Tims in Las Vegas about 4 years ago or so when he first laid eyes on the line of thread with his name on it "Razzle Dazzle". Heather came running in with it and said it was literally right off the boat from Japan! This thread is a favorite of mine when I want a flash of something on a wallhanging. The pictures below are of Linda, Donna and Ricky feasting at Mimi's. Next is my supply of Razzle Dazzle and to the right is Mother Superior, a/k/a Heather Purcell, co-owner of Superior Threads. Good food, good friends!

The next thing on the agenda at the meeting was Show 'n Tell. We didn't have many participants as we usually do, probably because of the holiday taking time away from our quilting or the members are keeping their creations under wrap until the quilt show in April. One quilt I especially liked was from Judy. In November we had our annual National Teacher Workshop and the teacher this year was Linda Ballard. Judy attended the Fractured Crystals class and apparently liked it so much she enlarged it to a bed size. It is beautiful.

The next quilt on the left is one I liked because of the whimsy trees. This was shown by a visitor from Las Vegas. Cute quilt!! The wallhanging on the right was done by one of our resident art quilters. She said she bought the kit at a quilt show but didn't realize until she got home and opened it up that it was the wrong dog! It is darn cute though! My granddaughter would absolutely love this as she is a pug lover and wanna be owner of one! I bought her a plush pug for Christmas. Close as she'll ever get to a real one.

One more picture below of a Show 'N Tell entry that I thought was very unique - a small wallhanging made to display quilt pins. Isn't this clever? Shown by Bev who received it as a gift from Margaret! (Margaret is the most prolific quilter in this Guild!)