Monday, January 31, 2011

UFO Challenge: January

{Note: This post is for both the usual Monday's pictures and Tuesday's crafts post. I will resume regular programming next week.   :-}

In the beginning of January, Patchwork Times drew the Number 6. And, the number 6 was assigned to "Scrap Upchuck". {You can see my original post to see what number was assigned to what UFO.}


I don't know why I separated the fabric squares into light, mediums and darks. Habit I guess. I didn't really need to do that. did I?. And, there was an extra smaller box full of fabrics that I also used which was not pictured.

Anyway, I started on committing random acts of violence against fabrics. Ha! I cut up a bunch of 2.5" squares -- 1,375 scraps, 204 "darks" and 134 "lights". The original Scrap Upchuck quilt used solid black and blues. I didn't want to purchase any more fabric as I wanted to use up the stash that I had set aside eons ago to sell or giveaway. And besides, I'm not a solid fan. I rather use tone-on-tone fabrics or fabrics that "read" as solids. So, I am attempting to use "dark" fabrics and "light" fabrics from the stash.


I thought it was going to take me forever to cut a kajillion little squares. But, it actually went rather quickly. I had shoved my hand inside the boxes of stash and randomly drew out fabrics. I even drew out a bag that was labeled as stash fabrics! It contained nine quarter yard cuts of Nancy Crow's fabrics -- ancient and perfect! Ha!

I finished cutting all the required squares needed and the UFO challenge on January 21st. I was absolutely thrilled.

Since, the month was not quite over, I decided to slap some squares on my design wall. I'm doing things backwards. There are two different blocks for this quilt: A & B. I am suppose to start making Block As first. However, I am starting with and making block Bs. That is me. Crazy. But hey, I'm the one making this thing. I can do it in any order I please, correct? Ha!

Here is what I have on the design wall. Oh boy. They are not very pretty or good looking, Are they? Oh well. That is why it is called 'scrap upchuck'! Ha! All I need to do is start sewing the squares together to make the blocks. This is only four 'B' blocks. I need to make a total of seventeen of them. Auuggghh! Ha!

Anyway, the UFO challenge for January (cutting all the fabric squares) is completed. Hurray!

Patchwork Times

Friday, January 28, 2011

Link Roundup

Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement; nothing can be done without hope.
~Helen Keller~

There wasn't a whole lot this past week that I felt was pass worthy. So, this is another short post.
  • God of All Seasons Inspirational; Seasonal Depression
    Above all, remember that God is the God of all seasons…even the one of depression. Soon you will “bravely surface, breathe easily once again, and be newly purposed

  • Inspiration in a Horrific Stephen King Sort of Way
    If you want to do something, do it. Ignore the voices saying you can’t or you’re not good enough. Don’t worry about failure. That may or may not come You’ll never find out unless you try. I don’t even think success or failure is as important as trying and actually completing the task.

  • Why Didn't I Think of That? Photography: Lightscoop; Gadget/Tool for the popup flash on cameras

  • A Place for Everything Organization; Junk Drawers; frugal

The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer;
my God, my strength, in whom I will trust;
~Psalms 18:2~

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wordy Wednesday

Kalgon, Taek me Away!

I'm sure you're tired of cat pictures. But, I had to share this one. When I spied Chessie doing this yesterday, I knew I would only get one chance.

I had to set up the camera outside of the room. I then quietly snapped a picture of her. Sure enough, once I snapped that picture, she popped up her head. She hates noises. Ha! But, I'm thrilled how this one shot came out. I think I'm getting better at taking pictures. I just need to find new subjects! Ha!

Since I was extremely tired when this was shot late yesterday, the "Calgon, take me away" came to my mind when I spied her in this position. It does look like she is wanting to completely relax too with that lone paw in the air.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Layer Cake Quilt Along: Block V & VI

Previously: Documentation IV

I did not document making these two blocks as well as I did with the first four blocks. I was struggling with block V and I could not be bothered with taking pictures of the process. And, I was so focused on finishing up block VI by this afternoon. I wanted to be all caught up in this quilt along. But, I do have pictures of the finished blocks.

Block 5

I am seriously disliking this block. Don't get me wrong. I am not disliking this block as a whole. In fact, I love the look of the block. I just do not like how mine turned out. I had to do some "fudging". And, I will have to do some more "fudging" to make this block work in the final quilt.

The designer of this block used every square inch of the 10" squares of fabric. As a result, this block didn't allow a whole lot of room for errors. The biggest problem is that I'm still very much a beginner - I need room for errors! Ha!

For example, I would have cut the stripes a little longer for the stripey Half Square Triangles (HSTs) in order to trim the HSTs to a nice squared up 'block'. But no, there wasn't any room for adding extra eighth or quarter inch. I did my best to sew them up nice and square. Ha! They still turned out wonky. I had to 'fudge' them to make it work in the block as a whole, which I do not like doing.

Ah well, this is as good as it'll get. If I had more fabric, I would try it again knowing what I know about making the block now.

Block 6

Fortunately, this block was a lot easier to make. I deviated from the designer's block. It is exactly the same design except for the fabric arrangement/usage. I went with two layer cakes (10" squares of fabrics) to make the center. I then dug into the leftover scraps to create the border and cornerstones. It is kind of weird looking; but hey, that is me! Ha! Actually, I'm glad I had just enough of the same fabric to use for the cornerstones. Otherwise, this block would have looked too pukey for me to use in the final quilt.

There ya go! I'm all caught up! Hurray! Block 7 was posted today and I have two weeks to make that one.

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Many Faces and Poses of Chessie

There is a cat bed on top of a piece of furniture in the office that Chessie spends the most time in. I think she spends a lot of time in the bed due to the fact that I'm in the office half the time and she's not really allowed into the sewing/crafting room. Also, I do have the space heater on when it's cold; so, it's nice and warm in the room.

One day, I got the bright idea of keeping the camera with me whenever I'm in the office. As a result, I managed to snap quite a few pictures of Chessie in this bed of hers. I already posted one out of the series of pictures for a Wordy Wednesday post.

Below is the rest out of the series that I liked the best. The lighting wasn't the best at times; but, a girl has to work with what she has. I hope you enjoy seeing some rare pictures of Chessie.

January 7,2011

January 13, 2011

January 18, 2011

January 24, 2011

Friday, January 21, 2011

New Button to the Right ------>

I received a comment that someone was having trouble subscribing via RSS feed. I checked it out and I don't know why; but, Blogger is pathetic.

So, after much research and wanting to curse, I figured out how to add a linkable button. You can now subscribe to an RSS feed by clicking on either the RSS icon or on the text to the right underneath my avatar.

I will continue to do research in hopes that I can make this better and/or easier for everyone to do in the future because it is still essentially Blogger's way - pathetic.

In the meantime, I hope this helps my anonymous reader.

Link Roundup

I actually won something again this past week; but, I haven't received the prize yet. I want to take a picture and review it. So, maybe next week I'll give you the link and a picture of the prize.

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.
~ Aristotle

I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.

~Psalms 121: 1-4

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Wordy Wednesday

Moi, circa 1971

I've been scanning in some old slides recently and came across this. Aren't those glasses horrid? Anyway, I loved cats even way back then. I don't know whose cat this was; but, it certainly wasn't ours.

What I am loving about scanning in these old slides is that I'm discovering precious pictures that I didn't know existed. I'm a sentimental old fool. I love looking at them.

Moi, circa 1970 or 1971

This is me with what I assume is our first cat, Tiger. I am thinking that this is 1971 because I was in first grade when he came to us. The one question I have is where are my glasses? I'm glad they were out of this picture. Also, weren't those plaid pants of this era horrid? Ha!

I am almost done scanning in slides. It's been taking me forever. I started early 2009 and here it is 2011. I will often lose focus and do other things. Also, sometimes seeing some of these old slides bring on some memories that just brings things to a halt.

Moi with 'Morris' aka 'Big Puss' aka 'Big Rotten Yellow Cat'
Circa 1976 in December

There are approximately 13 reels with 80 slides each, give or take a few. I am on the last reel. Once I'm done with this reel, I will move onto the odd shaped slides that Dan and I found buried upstairs in my folk's house. I will also be scanning in the rest of the pictures we find. It is tough trying to date some of these pictures; but, I'm doing the best I can.

When I am finished with them all, I am planning to burn all of the pictures and slides I've scanned in onto a bunch of CDs and giving them to everyone in the immediate family (which includes nieces and nephews). If any of you not-so-immediate family members read this and want a CD, please let me know and I'll see to it that you get a copy.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

My Husband is Creative Too

Let's do something different today. I'm not the only one creative around here. My husband is creative too. Here is a project that he recently completed and it was all for me. Ha!

He took a scrap piece of wood, cut a big ol' circle out of it and slapped a lazy susan hardware on it.

He also took more scraps of wood, framed it out, and drilled some holes in it to correspond to the lazy susan holes...

What could this be?

He dug into my stash of paints and...

Primed them...

Painted them...

He also put some Polyacrylic on them. Purple is my favorite color; but, I don't dare decorate with it except in accent colors...

Have you guessed what this is yet?

VoilĂ ! A Lazy Susan Cutting Board!

It's fairly good. I will have to be careful if I cut near the edges as it will tip. But, I think it's great for small cutting projects. And, it was cheap. He made this thing for an existing cutting mat I already had. So, the only expenses were for the lazy susan hardware and some rubber feet. I'm quite pleased with it.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Snapshots of Memories (2010/2011)

We traveled up to the Ft. Worth area and stayed with my sister-in-law over the New Year. I really enjoyed this visit. It was just what I needed. A bit of relaxation and a bit of playing tourist.

Weatherford's Courthouse

This is the coolest little town and it's thriving. This courthouse amazed me because it was like an island unto itself. There is an oval roundabout completely encircling it. I loved the architecture of the building. The square really does not exist as most of the buildings are gone/replaced. But this courthouse is gorgeous in my humble opinion.

Fort Worth Stock Yards

We went to the Fort Worth Stockyards for a day. I had a very good time just browsing the stores, wandering the streets and watching the people.

We had lunch at the Love Shack. When I saw the name while we were looking for a place to have lunch, I immediately started singing "Love Shack, Baby" by B52s. Yeah, that sort of dates me. Let me tell you, the food is delicious and the place is downright quaint. I loved it. We sat at the very top of the place and nearly froze to death when the wind started to pick up.

Cowgirls and Cowboys

The Slowest and Shortest Cattle Drive Ever

The stockyards have a cattle drive twice a day. I thought it was the saddest thing ever to witness. Those longhorns seems soooo bored. The cowboys and one lone cowgirl seemed bored too. Ha! :-)

We took a short trip to Sundance Square to check out the place and see if we'd like to visit again in the future.

Art on Building depicting the Chisholm Trail 1867 - 1875

Another Beautiful Courthouse

Bass Performance Hall

One of the many "art" inside storefronts. This is one of my favorites.

I also went to Grandbury with my sister-in-law to visit a quilt shop. I loved the downtown square. Don't ask me why; but, I do love the old timey squares with stores around a courthouse. I didn't take any pictures as I didn't feel like it.

The quilt shop itself was located right in the heart of the square. It was a small shop; but, loaded with fabrics and the like. We shopped at several antique stores (another favorite hobby of mine) and had lunch at a tea room. I had a very good time.

We also visited my niece and nephew-in-law and her baby and had lunch at Rosa's. I wish we had a Rosa's Cafe here in San Antonio! It is decent food for the right price. And, they have Taco Tuesdays!