May One Monthly Goal

This represents 2 1/2 months of blocks for a Block of the Month program from I think 2019. My goal for this month is to double that. Summer is when I have time to sew and for me, summer has started! Also, another incentive is, somehow, I signed up for two more Block of the Month programs for 2021. Why do I do this to myself?!

This was going to be my goal project for May, but it has come together so fast, I could easily be done by the week end. Although my second Covid shot is Friday, so we shall see what my energy level will be.

Butterfly Patch by Lella Boutique

This well be a rather large baby quilt for a girl to be born in August. It sure felt like Easter though when I was making the blocks! The pattern writer, Vanessa Goertzen, uses 4 blocks to make the butterfly. I added a few shoo fly blocks and a four patch block and wish I had done a few Log Cabins as well. All but the two vertical strips are cut, just needs to be sewed up!

Connect with Elm Street Quilts to see what other quilters are working on this month. Patty has sponsors for One Monthly Goal with a few winners randomly drawn each month. Today I got an email from her that I had been drawn for the month of April! What a pleasant surprise! Thank-you Patty, and Fat Quarter Shop! They are both a great resource for us quilters!

April One Monthly Goal

I finished on time! It was a super busy month and I will be happy when the next two days are done as well. I think I am more excited for the end of the semester than some of the students. But I have so much planning to do for the opening of next semester. I am so hoping that Oregon will open up as normal. We. need. it. But first, the doll quilt.

Snow Shoo Doll Quilt

I only had time to machine stitch in the ditch around the blue triangles. The quilting is the more difficult part of the job for me, so not perfect. But hopefully acceptable. I do like the overall look of it, and hope the recipient does too. I think I would like to make a larger quilt for myself. Could be interesting scrappy too. Hmmm.

I also received a doll quilt, from Mary Beard. Hand pieced and hand quilted! Lovely! Such a beautiful quilt and with a great hand feel. Perhaps from not using batting? I have never done that, but this is light, pliable, great drape, and simply lovely.

Hand pieced and hand quilted!

And now the wedding quilt! Nick and Michele liked the quilt, although Michele has only seen a picture of it at this point. 🙂 She will see it once they are back from their honeymoon.

Beautiful ceremony, lovely couple, fun evening.

It was good to be with my Texas family. Fun to see them interact and my brother still being a Dad. He raised some great kids! I may be a bit partial in that opinion…

Denny fixing Zach’s tie.
The Texas family, and me.

I didn’t get near enough photos of the quilt. Too busy a month! But the quilting was done by Janie Creates. She did such a great job! I love it so much, I already have plans for one with a softer grey background and Christmas fabrics!

Love the quilting!

I decided if they didn’t like the mix of blues on the front, the back is more than presentable with all the quilting!

back of quilt

Again, not the best photos. I was too excited after unpacking it from the box! But it has been given, and knowing my nephew, it will be loved. If you click over to Elm Street Quilts, you will see even more quilting fun of other goals met. Great inspiration!

April is a busy month!

In April, Lori of Humble Quilts, hosts a doll quilt exchange. I have participated I think four different years. Have received lovely quilts, and every year I tell myself, I need to just make two of everything so I will have one for myself when I am done. In an earlier post, I have pictures of some of the doll quilts I have made other years. Last year I did another bow tie block quilt. I wasn’t going to participate this year, because there is a wedding I will be traveling to so it eliminates a whole week end, which is when most of my sewing gets done. But Lori posted that she still has a few openings and really, how long should a doll quilt take to make? So my goal this month is to make a doll quilt, start to finish. At Elm Street Quilts, you can see what other quilters are working on this month.

Years ago on a blog, the author made a two block quilt she called Snow Shoo, using a snowball block and the shoo fly block. I thought it was such a unique look. I emailed myself a link to her blog and I can not find it anywhere. It was so many years ago I think I would have a quilt done by the time I found the link. So I tried to draw out what I remember.

I will keep it just two colors as well. I am hoping the background fabric isn’t too busy. Off to the cutting table!

Two bindings down!

I finished binding the Laundry Basket/Fig Tree mystery quilt from this spring! I even got a label on it!

I love the soft colors of the Fig Tree fabrics. Very soothing in such a stressful year. I think the quilting that Jeanette did also complimented the fabric and the pattern as well. I think it is most visible in the border…

I have made more paper pieced blocks and cut out fabric for a leader and ender project as well. Hopefully that will help me get a few more quilts made this year. I got the binding on the quilt for my nephew on as well. Less than a month away so I will blog about that later. In the mean time, go over to Elm Street Quilts to see what other quilters finished up this month.

Little Blocks 365

I am surprised at how much I am enjoying this project! I have had to rip on one of the blocks. Not easy to do. They are so cute! And I am getting the hang of the backwardness of the lay out. I am not even close to keeping up with the blocks each week, but that is okay. I am enjoying the process. I think I have 11 done so far. I don’t have an end game, so I am not worried if I don’t get all of them done, but they really are so cute, I will make as many as I can.

Progress on Goals

My last post, two months ago, outlined a few projects in the works and I have made good progress on them.

Secret Santa Sew along from Temecula Quilt Company blog.

My original plan for Nick’s quilt was the Secret Santa, but I saw a picture on pintrest of some flying geese and changed things up.

Flying Geese in assorted blues and grey grunge background.

I sent it off to my Minnesota quilter, Janie Creates. She has already sent a picture back of what she is doing and I love it! Can’t wait to see the finished quilt!

Alternating lines and feathers!

I have the binding strips cut out, so as long as it doesn’t get lost in the mail, I should be able to have it done by the wedding. I need to get caught up on bindings so have top stitched two other quilts. My goal for this month is to get at least one of them completed. Really, how long should a binding take? This is the one I will tackle first!

Laundry Basket Quilts 2020 sew along made in Fig Tree fabrics.
Red binding for ‘Jeanette’s Quilt’, cream for LB quilt, and the blue for Nick’s.

If you go to Elm Street Quilts, you can view other people’s monthly goals as well. Such talented folks out there!

Coming from Minnesota, weather is always discussed. So here is a picture of the winter storm that came through Valentine’s week end. Actually it is the parking/road behind the back door of where I work. Super slick. I had to stay on campus 3 nights. Only packed for one because surely it won’t be that bad…

Snow is one thing, the ice on top is another.

I also completed the December project from Figs and Friends.

Love how it turned out. Jeanette did a kind of orange peel quilting motif that reflected one of the fabrics. I think it will be a Christmas gift…

I signed up for Little Blocks 365 at Sentimental Stitches. It is no longer available, but Gay always has different sew-alongs going. This one is 3 inch blocks that are paper pieced. Every Friday she emails directions for a set of blocks. I am not an expert on paper piecing, and with much of my fabric stash unreachable, I think I may make a blue and grey quilt for myself with this project. I think I am in the mood to try and increase my skills. Since it is every Friday for much of the year, this will be another long term project.

Quilt Goals for 2021

Last year was a mixed up year in so many ways. The first half of the year, several things were accomplished and started. The summer brought time for a lot of quilts to get finished. After moving to Portland in August, I completed two quilts. I finished another ‘flimsy’ over break, but it is covered in so much dog hair, I don’t know that I want to do too many large quilts this coming year.

I have one must make on the list. My nephew is getting married! I really want to make Nick and Michele a quilt for their wedding gift. But it is in four months! I really need to get started and nothing too complicated. So I was thinking of doing the “Secret Santa” pattern from Temecula Quilt Company in the blues and greys Nick mentioned. I would like to make it a little larger, but since it is all squares and rectangles, I think I have a good chance of getting it done if I can find fabric. So far I have found a grey that I like for the background, but not a good mix of blues. The search continues…

Most of my quilt room is still in storage and not very accessible. When we transferred my belongings from the moving boxes to the storage unit, I pulled out one box labelled quilt kits so I have a few “shovel ready” projects. A few years ago now a popular sew along on Instagram was Sweet Escape by Camille Roskelley. I ordered a couple Honeybuns of Strawberry Jam and background fabric, printed off the directions and it sat waiting for me to make it. I told Kim about it and she made two of them! Fabric is with me, but the directions will need to be reprinted.

I am also a sucker for Block of the Months. At this point I think I have signed up for six of them, and completed two of them. The large picture at the top of the blog is one of the completed ones. I loved it and gave it away. Hopefully I will find another fabric line that would work well with the patterns. The other completed one is Charcoal and Cream from last year. But I had signed up for another BOM from them in 2018 called Autumn Splendor Mystery Sampler. I would love to get that completed this year. But of course I signed up for another BOM from them for this year as well. As well as a Sew Along from Primitive Gatherings…

Speaking of Primitive Gatherings, in 2017, Lisa offered a sew along called Triangles Gathering. I think she offered about 90 blocks made from Half-Square Triangle blocks. I saved the directions to all the blocks and loved how Nicole from Sister’s Choice Quilts put hers together. I bought fabric using some of the rich colors that Sandy Klop uses and even some paper sheet templates to help make all those triangles. I know I have seen that ‘kit’ lately so it must be in one of the boxes near the top.

Another project that I have seen on her blog and instagram was a quilt by Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts called Aurora. I love the purples from several of Pam Buda’s lines of reproduction fabric and it just happens that that color grouping is also reachable in my storage unit. Today I bought a lovely cream fabric for the back ground and am thinking this would be a great ‘leader and ender’ project to complete along with the others.

I also have fabric half purchased for a quilt from a book that I won last year that is no longer on my kindle….

And I am sure more projects will spring up as the year progresses. Looking forward to all the quilts to be made!

End of 2020

What a crazy year this has been. I am thankful I have a job, but it sure takes a lot of my time! Getting better at managing my free time so got a few Christmas presents made. The most important was the quilt for Denny, using his old uniforms as one of the fabrics!

I saw a similar pattern on Pinterest the beginning of the year and started ripping up the uniform in April, when the school was basically shut down and we weren’t feeding but a handful of people. I started in on the shirt first. Those uniforms are very well made! Is it called a French Seam, where one seam is sewn then folded over to create another seam? By the time I got to the pants, I was done, and brought out the rotary cutter and bypassed the seam altogether.

Quilt in a Day had grunge fabric on sale in the summer so ordered all three fabrics from them, but hadn’t yet determined how much I would need so still have more of each for another patriotic quilt another day. I wanted to make it wider than the center lay out so I drew up the ribbon border, again from a picture on Pinterest, and then reversed it for the other side. I think that was the most difficult part. Jeanette Nelson did a fantastic job on the quilting. We discussed it, but really it is all her inspiration and eye for design.

Air Force Symbol quilted in the center of the quilt.

The post office was overwhelmed this year and they really had me anxious with this quilt. Jeanette mailed it to me and after five days, we started going back to the tracking. Still no delivery. At ten days, it was returned to Jeanette! Address was correct. Post office worker could not see any problems as to why it was returned so she mailed it again. This time I received it, but just had time to get a binding on and back in the mail to Texas. From his facebook post, I think he liked it! Wish I could have been there too but not a normal year for those family gatherings we all hold dear.

The other Christmas presents that I made were for my nephews here in Oregon.

Yarn is made from Yak hair

Very popular in the Northwest, I knitted this from yarn and pattern from Purl Soho. Super soft yarn and it turned out HUGE. My brother tried it on and it fell to his nose! It was really funny, but I started making another hat for a back up.

This pattern was found on Ravelry, and yarn is Alpaca.

I made two of these. But they were a one-size-fits-all kind of pattern and were kind of small. Still a beginner knitter so need to learn how to modify a pattern. Next time…

Otherwise, the month has been all about baking! Mary Alice sent me the recipe for her mothers Almond Rusks. She would often give me a small portion when Mary Alice and I were able to quilt retreat together. So yummy! Mine turned out a bit rustic, but very tasty!

Swedish Visiting Bread from Dorie Greenspan book, Peppermint Marshmallows and Hot Cocoa Mix, Spiced Honey Pecan Bars from A Kitchen Addiction blog, and Peanut Butter Stars. Attempted Orange Rolls also, but they over proofed and were not as good as I would have liked. Still want to try Cardamom Rolls from the Baked Bree blog. Still time, another few days before I need to start thinking about work…

Looking forward to 2021! I’ve already started my first project – one of the kits from the Figs and Friends program that Fig Tree and Co. offered this past year.

Oregon is burning

Classes began August 31st. What a week that was! Very short on student help, still learning the routines, abilities, confidence of the full time people. And corporate support. Bless him, I could not have opened with out him, but at times, the job also became more difficult.

Then lets add in my lack of computer skills and IT issues. Computer screen says to reboot so I did. And lost everything on the desk top. Which held ninety percent of the information I need to use every week. Everything was gone. And of course it was Friday. IT had sent out a message that they were overwhelmed with help tickets with new students & faculty back on campus. A whole week before IT even helped, but it was too late. They fixed my credentials so the campus links would work again and I could start hiring students. But Pioneer links still need to be installed.

In the midst of all, this happened

Water main broke between Brad’s house and the neighbor. Crawl space under the house totally filled. Even in the air ducts of the house. What.A.Mess. They lost a few things in the garage and a lot of sleep. Fans were set up in the crawl space for at least a week. And then…

Forrest fires. Donna said they are historical in that so much area, in different locations have been affected. A coworker of my brothers lost her house and barn. The smoke in the air is oppressive. God bless fire fighters!

So with all that has happened I only made a Peanut Butter Pie to celebrate a day off and finished the heart quilt with straight line quilting. Miss having Jeanette around the corner…

For Willow, Therese granddaughter.

Settling In

So much has happened in the last month. 97 percent of my belongings are in Uboxes out of my reach. Starting to feel like they are being held hostage. With school starting and their delivery schedule, I think the first realistic date is Sept 13th for me to actually get access to them.

Glad I brought my sewing machine and a few projects with me in the car. But then a baby came early so I had to go shopping. My SIL recommended the perfect store… here is my start.

I actually got it done last night. Hopefully I can start doing some quilting this week end. In the meantime, here are some pictures of the trip out.

My brother offered to come along for the ride and I would never turn that down! We didn’t have a plan, but to start heading west towards Mt. Rushmore. As we drove, we kept seeing more and more motorcycles. Denny looked online and sure enough, Sturgis festivities would be starting up on the week end. His wife went online to start looking for a hotel for us. Almost triple the budget, but it was comfortable and nice. That night we talked to my oldest brother and decided we wouldn’t be driving through the area again anytime soon so we should be tourists. Which led to stops at Devil’s Tower, Grand Tetons, and Yellowstone.

As we were leaving Devil’s Tower, I got a message from my realtor. It was the first day for showings of my townhouse and I already had offers. Devil’s Tower is a bit off the beaten path, so there was no cell service. We pulled over at the first town to get the details. One of the offers wanted to know by 6:00 that night if the offer was accepted. None of us appreciated being given a deadline with no reason, especially when there were still a dozen showings still scheduled, so no, and we kept driving. By the time we got to Gillette, Wyoming, things had changed again. One of the offers had improved, but someone else came in with an offer 22,000 over list price. We were not expecting that. Not at all. Now we are just hoping it will appraise for that as well. Definitely a sellers market.

All together

This was best of all, my brothers and I together. Hasn’t happened in a long time.

Quilts completed

I finished my One Monthly Goal for July! I am normally very slow at binding quilts, but for these two, it wasn’t so bad. The hardest part was trying to space black binding along the black skyline of the quilt. I didn’t want one color all the way as the quilt is purposefully total opposites, the neutral, creamy top and the black on grey skyline. It isn’t a perfect match up, but considering the time crunch, I was happy. The pattern is Skyline by Coach House Designs. I bought it 3 years ago at a small quilt shop in New Ulm, near down town, on a state wide quilt shop hop. I was very intrigued by the design and mix of neutrals. Later I had the thought it would be great to use the school’s logo where I work (skyline of Minneapolis) in place of the patterned skyline. In looking at the pattern further, I didn’t want it to be as large, so had to start doing math to reduce the 12″ blocks to 9″ blocks. Not too bad. The next summer on the shop hop, I started buying fabrics. I was really happy with the mix of grunges, neutrals, and textures I found for the top. Erica, in Marketing, sent me over the jpeg of the logo easy enough. My first stall. I opened it up at home and wondered how on earth I am supposed to print off a 2 inch visual on my screen to spread out 63 inches on my quilt. Jeanette, machine quilter and graphics expert, to the rescue once again. No big deal she says! I admire her so much! Meanwhile I am making the different color combos and sizes of star blocks and loving it! My second stall. I am not an appliquer. I am all thumbs and have no confidence. This time Mary Alice to the rescue! She talked me through reverse tracing my skyline onto freezer paper and searching out the correct fusible foundation (which I found the third summer on a retreat at a store in Rochester) for the black fabric and how to bond them wrinkle free. This quilt would never have been completed with out the help of my friends.

I made this quilt for Jeremy. We have known each other for about 10 years, I would say, in different ways. He was a student first (we catered his grooms dinner), then a fellow employee at the college for several years. We then reconnected when he became my Realtor. It was such bad timing. The afternoon of our fall opening event, my realtor back in Litchfield called me with an offer on my house. I was so anxious I went to Todd, who told me that Jeremy was now a Realtor. He was so patient and thoughtful with me. HUGE decision to make and I only had a couple of months to find a new house. I even put an offer on one place only to have misgivings and he worked it out for me. Very happy with the house I did purchase – since the master bedroom is the largest with a great closet, it became my quilting room which is just wonderful. The next summer he came back to the school to work again! He truly deserved a quilt, just wish I could have completed it in a more timely manner.


I started the Flying Geese quilt for Todd last summer, at the retreat in Zumbrota. Inspired by a quilt on the Cupcakes and Daisies blog, I just started making flying geese blocks. I found that the more pattern to the fabric, they really didn’t flow. I now have a stack of them that didn’t make the cut. I will be making another Flying Geese quilt for myself because I love the versatility of the designs that you can make with them. I put little pops of color in the binding, it just seemed fitting and fun.

But the back of the quilt was Todd’s favorite. His family lives more outside the city so they have chickens, alpacas, and a huge dog. I found the pattern at Sew Fresh Quilts. You can see the dog pattern I used here for my nieces Dog Gone Cute quilt, also from Sew Fresh Quilts. Todd loves his Alpacas! He felts their wool and does shows with his projects from it and now has a machine to help in the process. The new quilt will be a perfect backdrop to his merchandise. It really was fun to watch him look at the Geese, just for him to turn it around again and look at the other side, and back again. It really does give me joy to see my labors of love so well received.