Saturday, January 31, 2009

Closest book to you

I got this from Tie Dye Judy's blog (she has one of the blogs I follow) who got it from Michele's blog:

Here is how to play the game.

* Grab the book nearest you. Right now.
* Turn to page 56.
* Find the fifth sentence.
* Post that sentence along with these instructions in a note in your BLOG.
* Don't dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual... Use the CLOSEST

I picked up Blogging for Dummies. Page 56, the 5th sentence is:
"As blogs emerged as a new Web medium, they became associated with some styles of writing and types of content, and then a loose set of ethics and standards emerged that an ideal blogger adheres to."

I am not a professional blogger by any means. I do it when I can and about what strikes my fancy, what is important to me at the time. I do have ethics and standards. I give credit when appropriate, I don't steal content, I link to someone's site so my readers can read it for themselves. I follow about 55 different blogs either as a follower, if they have that option, or as a subscriber when they don't. I like being able to follow other bloggers because I am able to see the people who are following them. I have found some great blogs that match my interests. I hope those who follow me by whatever means will have ethics and standards too. I trust people to do the right thing, until I am proven otherwise. So my friends, feel free to link back to me if I have anything you would like to share with your readers.

What do you think...are bloggers following so sort of ethics and standards?

Friday, January 30, 2009

Fleece Winnie the Pooh blanket for "Baby Mac"

I get lots of help in my quilting studio. Conway Twitty the Kitty has taken over his brother's spot on top of my rolling carrier for my sewing machine. I finally gave up chasing them off and covered it with a towel to keep it clean. Don't know why they like it but they both do...a lot

Then there is Clarise. Her invisible fence collar is almost as big as she is. Right now she is sleeping on the cat stracching post with a seat on it. The cats don't use it so she does. I think it's a territory thing with them.

Here is the fleece Winnie the Pooh blanket. My DIL asked for a fleece blanket that could be used in the baby car seat. I took a 60 x 108 inch piece and cut it in 2 lengthwise. This is not a conventional size but will be extra long to double up or put under and over the little one. Since there are so many fun colors in this blanket I used a rainbow colored binding on it. It just makes me smile.

As you probably saw on the baby due date count down meter at the top of my sidebar "Baby Mac" is due in just 7 days. (But who is counting?) The kids have picked out Irish names but I'm not letting the cat out of the bag yet as to what they are. So until the baby gets an official moniker it will be "Baby Mac" When I spoke to my son it was so fun to hear him talk about the baby is starting to drop and other OB terms, like he's a pro at this. Well they both will be shortly.
I bought my plane tickets last night so I'm already to
go. Can't wait to get my hands on the new one and the twins. The cousins will live about 11 miles apart while we are a 12 hour drive away. I can see how I will be racking up those frequent flyer miles in the future.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Homeless Teen Quilts, TX

One of the blogs I follow is Debra's Design Studio. She has committed to making quilts for homeless teens in TX. When I 1st decided to make a quilt there wasn't anyone to help me. I went to a big box fabric store, it may have been a Joanne's. I bought a starter kit, cutting board, ruler, rotary cutter and a beginning to quilt book. I didn't know anything about perfecting a quarter inch seam, how to design a quilt, nothing at all. I did most of it wrong. Cut my squares using the cutting board as the guide for the size. As you can imagine the quilt didn't come out like I envisioned. For about 10 years has been sitting in a plastic box waiting for it's moment to shine. When I found Debra's blog I knew where this quilt top needed to go. With great glee, I boxed up the top, extra blocks and another quilt top I had created as a Mystery Quilt project New Year's Day 2008 and sent them to Debra. Look what she has created!(Top 1 on the frame, Top 1 completed, Mystery Quilt completed) New homes for quilts and blocks I would never use - it's a wonderful feeling to assist in this worthy project. If you have UFOs, orphan blocks please contact Debra - she can sure use them.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Barack Obama, George Bush, The Change

I have read so many blogs today that are thanking God we have a new president and change has come. Not one blog has expressed any good sentiment about Mr. George Bush. I am also pleased we have a new president. I am grateful our democratic process works, that we the people have the right to chose who will lead us. I pray the new president leads us well.
I want to be at least one blogger that thanks Mr Bush for his service to this country. Did I agree with all he did? No. Only time will tell us what kind of president he truly was. I was taught not to judge without walking in someone else's shoes. We don't know, what President Bush knew as he made his decisions leading our great nation. Remember the people once elected him too, twice. Our nation has not been attacked since 9/11. Has Mr Bush kept us safe, without us knowing all that he did to keep us safe? Probably. For that I am grateful. The presidency is a difficult job, one I would not want to take on. Have you noticed how each president ages so quickly? President Obama will too. Does this mean I am bashing Obama? No.
I took lunch today with a number of nurses and residents in a nursing home. We sat, all of us white, and tears were in more than a few eyes as we watched the inauguration. Hope is what we talked about, hope is what we crave. Hope that President Obama will also be able to keep us safe, that he will be able to make those hard choices that are going to come his way. Will the American people agree with all he does? No, but we need to give him a chance and the time to let hope come to fruition. Farewell Mr Bush, Welcome President Obama.
Please tell me what you think.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Baby Shower for Baby Mac

My DIL sent pictures of the baby shower yesterday. I wish I could have been there but it's just to far for a quick trip. Looks like they had a great time.

The presents.

Someone created a cake with baby items and a monkey. What a great idea.

Then showing the quilt I had done for Baby Mac.

The last pic is of a knitted outfit by Baby Mac's other grandmother.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Road to California Quilt Show

There is no picture to pique your interest in this post, you will have to click on the link provide to see some AWESOME quilted EYE CANDY. They say a picture is worth a thousand words and it is certainly true in this case. Words do not do them justice. This link will take you to The Road to California Quilt Show winners. I have been hearing about the progress of the Best in Show, Grape Harvest, (1st picture) and Best Group Quilt, Queen Mary (15th picture down) in one of my quilting groups. Marilyn and Lynn are certainly 2 very talented ladies. Congratulation to both of them. In addition Sharon Schamber took the Best Large Quilt category with Spirit of Mother Earth (9th picture down) She has a detailed view of part of this quilt as the header on her website. Congratulations to her as well. I hope you enjoy looking at all of this eye candy. Please let me know what quilts you like the best and why by adding a comment.

Cold Weather Quilting

As the north and even here in Western NC it is COLD. This morning, actually it was yesterday morning now, we had the coldest temp I can remember in our almost 8 yrs here in the sunny south. It was 4 degrees F. Apparently by the time I got up we were having a heat wave, it was up to 5! We moved south to get away from this kind of cold. We are blessed compared to those who are really up north. My nephew in WI was commenting on the snow they had been having. When I let him know we had snow as well he was amazed, didn't think we got the snow. All in all, I'm glad he is up there experiencing the cold and snow he is and I am only temporarily in the cold, arctic blast. My heart goes out to all enduring this brutal cold. Some of my ancestors come from MN. I was thinking about how they survived this type of cold in the 1800 and earlier 1900's without the conveniences we have today, central heating, running water, well insulated homes. I am grateful to be living in these times.

I have been so busy at work that I haven't had any time this week to quilt but the weekend is here and I plan on 2 days of quilting until I drop. The newest grandchild is due in 20 days. I have already made a quickie quilt and a bunch on fleece burp cloths, sent off earlier this week so they can be here for the baby shower this weekend. I wish I could be there but am saving my time off for when the baby gets here in Feb. I wish I didn't have to chose but we live 12 hrs away so it's not possible to pop in for a few minutes. I will be making several quilts with BABY GENIUS fabric for the new baby and the twins who turned 1 earlier this month. We will celebrate their birthday when we go north, hope it's warmer by then.

I added a new feature at the bottom of the blog. If you like puzzles, scroll down and enjoy. This is one of my mini landscape quilts titled Purple Mountains Majesty. I was created from the class Mini Landscapes taught at by Susan Brittingham. I just love Quilt University!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Quilt Art website and mailing list

For those interested in Quilt Art you can subscribe to a QuiltArt mailing list. Here is the link to the web site. This is not a blog, it is all via email. It is free but they do accept donations to help defray the costs to keep it up and running. It is a great group of talented, sharing artists. Here is the info if you are interested in joining.

Visit to subscribe
or unsubscribe from Quiltart.

In the short time I have been subscribed to this list (I am on digest because they are a prolific group) I have made new contacts, and more importantly learned so much from some of the best artists there are.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Flying Geese quilt blocks

I subscribe to The Quilt Show blog. The Quilt Show is an joint venture between Ricky Tims and Alex Anderson. They are 2 giants in the world of quilting. They have great quilters as visitors/lecturers and the subscriptions are reasonably priced. Today Ricky Tims demonstrated how to create Flying Geese blocks with just 1 seam. I had to watch the video, it is so easy. I avoid flying geese because I never can get them to come out right. I am going to have to try this. I have been dreading my plan to use this block as a border on a baby blanket. Now I can go sew with no fear. Please let me know if you found this method as easy as I did.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Top Dog and Cat Names

Found a link on the login page for MSN regarding pet names. Check out the weird names people have for their pets. I thought some of our nicknames for the furry family were different. I guess our names are relatively normal. Here are pictures by my DH, Dan Houck, (see link to the right) of Nelson Rockefeller, aka Rocky, aka Full Nelson (of Nelson Rockefeller fame), on the quilt I made for DH several Christmases ago. For those who don't know The Rockefellers were big in politics and charities in NY. Our other kitty is Conway Twitty the Kitty, aka Half Nelson or Little Nelson. Little Nelson is no longer so little. Enjoy!

Please remember to take the survey - link on the right. It only takes a minute or 2 and will help me make this a better blog. Thanks for helping.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


I am slowly moving into the 21st Century. I just joined Facebook.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Quilting and Sewing for Baby Mac

I received an email from my DIL today asking if I could make something warm and soft for the new baby. She must have been reading my mind. I have a Snuggle Up pattern, from Black Cat Creations, which is both a blanket and bunting in one. I'm going to make it up with flannels instead of Minke. If it turns out OK I may try it in Minke.

I had a meeting with a local shop owner Sherry Edwards of The Salt Box. I met Sherry this fall when I decided to check out her shop. one thing led to another, you know how it is when artists get together, and a new quilting class is being born. I will create a beginner quilting class that will start January 29th, 2009. We will have the class at The Salt Box. I am EXCITED to be working with Sherry to share one of my passions.

I also found a great podcast with Larkin Van Horn by Bonnie McCaffery. Larkin shows how she beads on her art quilts. Great Podcast Bonnie and Larkin! I have taken a class from Bonnie and found it quite fun and informative. I also got to eat lunch with her and she is as great in person as she comes across in her podcasts.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Stumble Upon link - Mama Bears

I am trying to beef up my blog. to make it more interesting and friendly. I have created a survey (through in the sidebar to the right. Please take a few quick minutes to give me constructive feedback. I would like you to come back time and time again.

In this regard I have been doing some surfing today and came about or should I say stumbled on, In keeping with the post regarding the MOM song, In my next life I'm gonna be a Bear. I had never thought about it in these terms but she is absolutely right. I wanna be a bear in my next life too. Maybe not, I don't believe bears get to quilt.

On the quilting front, still no quilting today but I have started the planning for my next projects. While at Mary Jo's Cloth Store yesterday I bought several baby books to quilt. The fabric is washed, dried and ready to be worked on. As I formatted this post I realized that 2 of these panels are about a bear, Paddington Bear. A guess this is a Beary post day. Sorry, couldn't resist.

Paddington Bear Learning to Count, Vol 2

Paddingon Bear's ABC's Vol 3

Beatrix Potter ABC Vol II

Thanks for looking, reading and taking the survey in the sidebar on the right.

Mom Song

I want to thank Chris Daly for a wonderful laugh today. On her blog Greetings from Shady Grove she posted this great funny song, The Mom Song. I saw myself in this song when my son was younger as I suspect many Moms will. This woman has great breath control to get it sung so well. I hope you enjoy this entertainment.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

A Mother Lode of Fabric

For those of you who live near Gastonia, NC or are traveling through the Charlotte area should check out Mary Jo's Cloth Store. The have a huge building filled with so many lovelies. I have never been to a store that has such a large selection of fabrics. Make sure you bring your checkbook though because you will be buying LOTS of quality fabric. Mary Jo's has all sorts of fabric, 100% cottons for quilting, home dec, bridal, silks, etc. with unbelievable selections and prices. when I go there it is like eating potato chips, I can't buy just one (thing). I do frequent and support my local quilt shops but every now and again a girl needs to take a trip to Mary Jo's.
I was able to pick up some new fabric book panels so the grandchildren can learn their alphabet, numbers and animals. At the same time they can slobber all over them without causing any harm. I love cloth books...actually I love books period, but that is another passion.

On the family front I received another wonderful photo of my beautiful DIL, DS, and baby Mac. They are going to be such great parents! They are 34 days from the due date. Looking good Teresa!

My sister is able to go home at last. Her hand is healing, pain is improved. Her son is flying up to help with the driving home. I sure have enjoyed her visit even if she has been a "bad influence" on the fabric shopping expeditions.