Thursday, April 10, 2014

Moment of Truth

I've dragged out my Tula Pink Beanstalks quilt, which I see I worked on 18 months ago!  It is a little wonky, but I've decided this is the year to make it.  I can either sew it and it may straighten up......

Or maybe I'll end up letting it be a little crooked. Or maybe cut it up and turn it into another colorful quilt. But I'm working on it today to see what to do....It's too pretty to hide away!

And, I'm pulling fabrics for some scrappy trip squares.

Linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced Modern Quilting for WIP Wednesday.

Happy sewing!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Eleven Questions from Wendi at Prsd4Tim2

While I was deep in Swedish slumber (Feb through almost the whole of March) a blogger buddy sent me a message that she had nominated me for a Leibster Award.  It's a really sweet thing to do, to recognize the work another blogger puts into making blogland a happier place.  
I don't really feel worthy of such an award, as I am simply not consistently here, but I can't deny the friendship and fellowship Prsd4tim2 gave me by offering it.  She said she loves my mix of quilts and nature photos, and well, that shows she gets what I'm going for here, even if I don't sometimes!
xoxo BIG THANK YOU WENDI!!! xoxo 
So, in the interest of friendship and getting my act together, here are my answers to her Leibster Questions:
 1. Why did you start blogging?
I wanted to encourage myself to create, be it collage or quilting, and I was drawn to the idea of combining pictures and words in an informal, but accessible setting.  I thought if I learned anything, others might learn from me too. I thought of it as a fun way to send letters back home to my family in the States too.
2. What is something this year that you are really looking forward to?
This year I am looking forward to finishing two sampler quilts and a pile of UFO's, one at a time.  I'm also looking forward to becoming an Auntie for the first time!  And I'm hoping for another trip somewhere, but we'll have to see......
3. What is your favorite thing to do to unwind?
I'm a TV gal when it comes to unwinding.  I also love to walk in the forest and take pictures, and I love to read before bed.  During the day, I like to sit on the window seat for a few minutes and look at the birds.
4. Photos say a thousand words so share a photo that means the most to you. Why is that picture important to you?
It's hard to choose one photo, but the one I really love right now is one of my father and me, from when I was a child. I found it displayed upstairs in my Grandmother's house when I went home for a visit/her funeral recently.  We both look very happy.  It is a picture of me, but when I see it, I feel how much my grandparents loved me, just the way I am.

I think it is the way she always saw me, mischievous, happy, waiting and believing something fun was about to happen.  And I'm wearing red, which she loved (but a color that is harder for me to wear right now.)  I know that when this picture was taken, my socks kept falling down.  She gave me a pair of rubber bands to hold them up.   When I visited just, I looked and she still had a bunch of rubber bands on the handle to the living room door. Of course I took a pair with me :) 

4. What quote inspires you the most?
 I can't remember the exact quote, but I say "Pulling the roses won't make them grow faster" and I think about how the tiger in Leo the Late Bloomer pulls on the flowers so much, he pulls them out and they don't grow at all!  Patience......
5. Name a quilting tool you can’t live without & why?
 There are plenty of good quilting tools, like the rotary cutter, and the Omnigrid rulers, especially the Square Ups, which are really convenient for cutting accurately.  I really love my can of compressed air for cleaning out threads and lint from the machine.  
Edited to add:  I really love Superior needles and couldn't live without them!

6. Where is your favorite vacation spot?

 I love Crete!  It is fairly easy to get to from Sweden, and I love the rugged nature and the fresh veggies and warm people.  Austria comes a close second, for the amazing landscapes.

7. What is your favorite blog?
There's no way I can choose just one favorite blog!  But I do have a list on my side bar of those I visit pretty often....

8. What is your favorite way to work out?
Sigh....I don't work out.  But when I did, I loved biking and running and swimming and even lifting weights.  Sure would be nice to do that again!!  I bet I have to swap running for walking though.

9. Where do you like to shop?
I love to check out grocery stores when I travel, and I love open markets if there are any.

10. What's the best advice you've ever been given?
The best advice I ever got was to speak from the heart, and speak truthfully.  Not to be mean, but to be honest.  Nothing is ever so big that you can't share it, and sparing someone's feelings can often hurt and confuse the matter more than just saying what you truly feel.

11. What is your favorite blog post you've written?
My favorite blog post would have to be Thinking About Sis and Grandmother because it was such an active post, sewing and thinking about my family, sending and receiving pictures back.  The next in line would be Zackie Boy Is In Doggie Heaven, because it came straight from my heart, and because of the love that came back to me from sharing it.

Now, I'd like to do a twist on the Leibster and nominate ALL who read this for a Leibster.  No pressure! Just take the questions below, answer and post if you'd like to share some cool info about yourself!  Then, if you want to, no pressure, add a link to your answers here to share more!
1. Why did you start blogging?

2. What is something this year that you are really looking forward to?

3. What is your favorite thing to do to unwind?

4. Photos say a thousand words so share a photo that means the most to you. Why is that picture important to you?

4. What quote inspires you the most?

5. Name a quilting tool you can’t live without & why?

6. Where is your favorite vacation spot?

7. What is your favorite blog?

8. What is your favorite way to work out?

9. Where do you like to shop?

10. What's the best advice you've ever been given?

11. What is your favorite blog post you've written?

Happy sewing!

Thank You!

Thank everyone who reads this little blog.  I am aware that it doesn't grow much bigger than little, but that's how it is.  The ebb and flow in my life really goes back and forth, and the way I react to it does too.  It's been forever since I posted anything (last February?) so I am rusty about writing.  But I've missed you guys!  Missed me too.  SO, here goes....

I've been sewing bee blocks, and taking pictures.

Bee Blocks

                            I'm about ready to sew the 2012 FQS Designer Mystery BOM together!

The Last Four 2012 FQS Designer Myster BOM's

I also have enough received and made bee blocks to sew up the other sampler I've been working on.
Sashing and straightforward?  On point with lots of white and a few pinwheels?  Not sure yet, but I know I want it to be a longer quilt.

Mostly, I'm just trying to get my act together. Every year, for the past several, I get down in the dumps sometime in the fall, and sometime in the spring. I never know when it will happen, and I'm frankly tired of talking about it or feeling guilty about disappearing. Or trying to figure out what to say without saying that it sucks again. So I'll just say I'm back again.  I've had some life stuff, like the death of my grandmother, and a wonderful trip home to see everyone.  It really was fantastic to see my family again, but the depression hit afterwards.  I always think I'll be able to head it off, but it just doesn't go till it's good and ready.  

 So, I was away for part of February, and I just have to call it that I skipped March this year.  I have some photos to show for it, but I really can't list what I was up to.  I don't know.  I'm telling you, even the birds went back to the forest for a while, when we had an early thaw.  I'm just glad to be back again, feeling more positive and blessed, and looking forward to sewing and snapping pics and sending little blog "letters" out into the universe.

Thank you friends!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Green January

If you ever happen to follow my photos, they often lead back to Flickr.  I've been taking different color pictures every month, just since November. January was dark green.   I found pine trees, barn doors, a snowy bus stop, fabric, paper, food....
  Here's how it all came out:

January Mosaic 2014

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Some Finishes!

I did it all out of order, in a way.....but I finally got this improv mini done, that I started in London for the Fat Quarterly Retreat, in a class with Lucie Summers. What a fabulous teacher, and incredible book!!  I never thought all these 2065 stitches would leave teh quilt sqaure, or with such a wonderful texture.  But I am hooked!  Now why did I leave it again?  Oh yeah, I dreaded the hand quilting. It is slow going to start, but I think it gets better with practice.  I sure got a little with this one!

Improv quilt, better lighting

This was my project for January for a Lovely year of Finishes.  Just missed the wire, but done is Done!

And below are solids angel blocks I made to send away.  Also, such fun to use someone else's palette!  These are strictly pieced, and I found the solids to be quite soothing to work with. 

So two completely different styles to round out the week!

Alas, I am a real Lazy Bum an dI never got to the rest of the aqua and red and cream mystery BOM's, but they just have to roll over into February, which is already here!

Blocks are ready to mail!

Blocks are ready to mail! 

Last one of my first ever solids blocks. I'm hooked!
To paraphrase Bob Ross, I pressed the devil out of it! These little bitty squares are kicking my llama!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Up to Something

Well, I must be, right?

Since I last posted, I finished another Geese in a Circle block, for a bonus bee swap with a flickr friend.  She requested ivory and red, and I have to say, I love it!  I see a theme growing.....

Bonus Bee Swap , Red and Ivory

I've been cutting all the fabrics for the last 4 blocks of the 2012 (!) FQS Designer Mystery BOM quilt. To finish these blocks is my January goal for the Lazy bums Flickr Group. I really want to drop everything and just Finish these!

I saved the cuttings of all the Half Square Triangles I made with the last batch.  They are still big enough to make another round of (smaller) HST's.......

And just beyond these is all the fabric leftover from cutting all the blocks.....

Including some lovely selvages to make into something nice.
And beyond that is this...

and this...


and these guys...

... and a house to clean, and a dog to walk!

 So I better get going!  But I'll be dreaming about these also, that are ready to turn into bright bee blocks as well......

Can somebody help me wring some more hours out of the day?!??

Monday, January 13, 2014

Tjugondag Knut

Tjugondag katt

Today's the twentieth day after Christmas! in Sweden it's called Tjugondag Knut, or St. Knut's Day. It's the traditional day to take down the Christmas tree and all the lights and decorations from the Christmas season, and finish up the Christmas cookies and candy. By sun-up (which is around 8:30 in the morning, where I live up in Jämtland.)

We started the day taking down lights, and went on to the tree.  Everything is taken down now, and it really feels like Christmas is over.  There were no candies left to eat.  We took care of them already!

Tjugondag knut

I got a bunch done over the weekend, when I finally took down some BOM's I've been hanging onto.
I finished 4 blocks!  I had company with a flickr group called the Lazy Bums, who were holding the first annual Lazy Bums Global Retreat, to tackle some of our worst UFO's.  We used a shared spreadsheet and checked in with each other during the whole event. It was lots of fun to sew and chat a little too.  Now I have only 4 blocks left to do. 

Cleanup time!

And a bunch of cleanup......

Starting lazy bum global sewing retreat! Midnight local time....Getting there!  14.35 local time...

Happy sewing from Lizzie in Sweden!