Friday, November 30, 2007
Uh... they're brand new?
Here's a few that I actually sort of like:And this is the piece de resistance -- the donor refers to this as "Y2K Baby Butt fabric":This is about the size of a fat quarter, not just 10". She wanted us to get the full effect! Why on earth would anyone manufacture this fabric?
What would YOU do with these squares?
Sunday, November 25, 2007
The Thanksgiving dinner was surprisingly good! I was a little worried about the tendency for my in-laws to make everything from cans and packages... but that didn't seem to be the case. There was a distinct lack of greenery though: my Brussels sprouts were the only non-starchy vegetable besides the obligatory green beans smothered in something from a can and topped with something else from a can.
(Steam the Brussels sprouts until tender but not mushy; toast some hazelnuts in a pan and then remove skins with a towel and chop in half; mix the sprouts and nuts and drizzle on some hazelnut oil; sprinkle with kosher salt; mix it all up and eat!)
We were hoping to have a little snow, just to make it seem like a real Wisconsin experience -- and we did! Just about 2-3 inches, but it was so pretty! Here's a very bizarre photo from our hotel room. It was enough for me to be able to throw a few snowballs at Al (memo to self: put gloves on before making snowballs) Boy, was it cold for a California girl! Most days were around 29-30 degrees F. I wore a lot of clothes, but there were still some frozen bits sticking out. I'm often tempted by Madison because it's such an interesting city, but the weather (summer and winter) would definitely take some getting used to. Here's a photo I took in Mineral Point, a small town about half an hour away -- there are lots of artists and antique stores there. Things iced over like this are seldom seen where I live!
My friend Carol took me to the most amazing yarn store -- it's called Lakeside Fibers, and it is HUGE and friendly, and has a nice cafe looking out over the lake. I don't need any more yarn, but I succumbed to some gorgeous red Berroco "Foliage" to make a scarf out of. Apparently the colors are supposed to resemble New England fall foliage; mine is "Japanese Maple".
Saturday, November 17, 2007
The family pressure can get a little overwhelming, especially for such a short visit. Luckily I have one fine friend (my father-in-law's neighbor) who I can sneak off with for an afternoon for my time-out, while Al entertains his mother! Did I mention I have two mothers-in-law? Is that fair?
My biggest quilting success of the week was the decision to hand over my giant batik jewel box top to the long-arm quilter. I had it all pinned, and it sat here for a couple of months while I tried to make myself start quilting... but at 100" square it wouldn't begin to fit on the handiquilter frame, and I just couldn't see pushing it through my machine on the dining room table. So -- it's promised for mid-January and I hope to have it on the bed by the end of that month! (I know I posted this photo before, but here it is again)
Then, I finished up this very-bright baby quilt that had been started last year. I've accumulated a small pile of baby & child quilts that are intended for charitable uses, but I have trouble figure out who to donate them to. The local guild gives a lot of quilts to the children's hospital here, so I'd like to find another outlet. A couple of years ago I gave some to a women's shelter called "Better Futures for Women and Children" -- in addition to the shelter, they help women get set up in new apartments. Maybe I'll get in touch with them again, and create space in my closet for a new stack! I like to do the various mystery quilts in child-size versions, so they seem to add up.
Finally, this is a top that resulted from a mini-group project a few weeks ago. It came from a Sara Nephew pattern, and it's called "cube in the corner" -- my version is called "Fade to Black". It's a little bit wonky -- there are a million bias edges to deal with -- but I think it will quilt out, as they say. And -- the whole thing was made from stash! Of course I haven't decided how to quilt it yet...