Sunday, December 20, 2009

Merry Christmas!

I hope this finds everyone surrounded by loved ones enjoying this wonderful time of the year.

This year has been a mixture of great joy and sadness for us.

My sad news is the loss of my Mom. In November, Mom was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer. She decided not to take treatments to prolong her life. She moved in with my cousin Linda who invited her to stay during her illness. My brothers and I were able to visit her at the same time while she stayed in Vancouver, WA. In less than six weeks, Mom was in a coma and passed away quietly on December 16. Mom will always be remembered for her sense of humor. Even when she was in pain, she would joke about being ready to party after her nap.

We are so thankful to my cousin Linda and her husband Bill for easing the pain for Mom during this difficult time. We do not know what we would have done without them.

Our joy is our full-timing lifestyle. We are still enjoying our life on the road. Gail and Don, owners of American Sunset RV where we are work-camping put together a Christmas potluck party for all the work campers and monthly residents. Don roasted two very large rib eyes while the rest of us brought lots of delicious side dishes. No one left the party hungry. As a matter of fact, there was so much left over, we had lunch the next day. Tasted twice as good the second time around. Yum! I have decided that I like this new tradition of holiday potlucks. I don’t have to do as much cooking, but I do get to try new dishes and walk away just as stuffed.

We decorated the coach’s dashboard with a 2-foot tree and some small Christmas favorites. Of course, the cats think the tree is there for their entertainment. They like batting at the decorations and leaning on the tree when we are not looking. The windshield has also been decorated with flashing LED lights powered for 150 hours by two AA batteries.

I made a mini quilt using "Holiday Cheers" clipart by Rebecca Carter. I find great clipart from different artists at pcCrafter. Here are some close-ups of the Santas.

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Chocolate Covered Cherry Mice

One of my friends and co-worker showed the rest of us how to make these cute mice. I wanted to share these with you. Easy to make and a great project for the kids!

1 jar of Maraschino cherries with stems
1 bag of Wilcox chocolate melt candies
1 bag of 1/2 peanuts
1 bag of Hershey Kisses
1 tube of red decorating gel
Wax paper

Hold stem, dip cherry in melted chocolate. Place on wax paper. Press unwrapped Kiss to the chocolate covered cherry. You now have the mouse's head and body with tail. Add 2 half peanuts between the Kiss and cherry for ears. We used peanuts, but I would think sliced almonds would work just as good. Add eyes and nose with red gel. The mice will be ready to eat or decorate within a couple of hours. Cute garnishes for your cold dishes during the holiday season.
So Cute!

White Christmas by The Drifters

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Well, we have not been blown away from the high winds and we have not needed our kayaks to get to work just yet, but it is only November. For the past week, we have had 35-40 mph winds with gusts up to 60 mph. Our Bluebird (motorhome) does give a little shake once in a while. Thank goodness it is built very solid and sits low to the ground. I feel very safe and cozy during these storms.
This is a view from our kitchen towards the living area. We do not have slide-outs, but it is an extra wide which seems to make the difference between tight space and feeling cozy for us. My sewing machine and laptop are sitting on the dining room table. I often move them to the chair when we eat.

Of course, with bad weather comes plenty of opportunity to quilt and read. I have been getting some hand quilting done along with a couple of more mini holiday quilts for my window. I did not get the Thanksgiving one done, but here are a couple pictures of my Turkey Tom. I could not find a pattern I liked so I used some clipart and blew it up to the size I wanted for the mini quilt. I get my clipart from PC Crafter. They have quite a variety of artists and art work.

Here I am getting some quilting done while watching TV. The sun actually came out for a while. About an hour later, we were having another down pour and high winds.

Hitch is staying entertained by watching the hummingbird. I’m amazed that tiny hummingbird can fly in this bad weather. He feeds all day long no matter how bad the winds are blowing.

Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Scary Buddies - Isn’t this cute?

This monthly mini took me only a week to make. The pattern is from Patch Abilities by Julie Bohringer. Julie has some wonderful patterns that you can see on her website. I got this pattern from Quilt Corral Too in Rapid City. I used the Lite Steam-A-Seam2 to fuse the pattern together. While working on the hand embroidery, I watched a couple of my favorite Halloween movies like Practical Magic, Hocus-Pocus, and Under Wraps. I love a good laugh and of course, the movies get me into the mood for the season. I got a few more to watch, but I will have to work on my appliqué or my Christmas potholders instead.

I needed to get a small dowel, so I could hang my new mini in the window with a suction cup. I also needed to look for some batik for finish my pond quilt. Dan & I went to V & S Variety Store in Elma, WA. They advertised the store was an old fashioned variety store with candy, toys, housewares, and fabric. Oh, what a pleasant surprise! It is like Hobby Lobby or JoAnn’s only independent with over 5,000 bolts of fabrics. The employees were very nice and very helpful. I plan to visit again during our long winter stay.

Here’s my mini hanging in the window of our coach.
I found the perfect batik! It looks like little flagstones. A great finish edge for my pond.
Have a Safe and Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Crazed over UFO Quilts

Done! Finished!
The best part about being retired is having the time to finish my unfinished objects (UFO).

This crazy quilt sat in my closet for 5 years. I almost gave it away at our garage sale. It was too big for our motorhome and our small 2-ft tree. I decided if I trimmed it down, I could still use it. Once I trimmed the skirt down, I felt like the skirt was more manageable to work on.
Squirrel is inspecting the finished Crazy Christmas Tree Skirt

Little Angels

Some buttons

Bullion stitches.

Traditional spider web

Ribbon stitches

This is a Mckenna Ryan design called "Beary & Bright". I love her quilts. I decided to do painted threads after buying Melinda Bula's "Cutting Garden Quilts". I liked the idea of adding my own quilting designs for a different look. I added loops to the corners so I can hang the wall quilt in our front windshield with suction cups.

I'm ready for Christmas!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Leaving Behind My Friends and Project Linus

Chama Quilt Show 2008 and Quilting Retreat

Since leaving Albuquerque, I have felt a little lonely for my friends I left behind. Even though we are in contact by e-mails, I still miss our Saturday meetings, the conversations, and our show-n-tell of our most recent projects.

I would like to share some of my pictures of my friends and a few of the quilts I gave to Project Linus over the past few years. I often scan the material's patterns so I can use the appliqué pattern to enhance the quilt.

Tumbling Blocks with Retro Dog

Fractions Pattern with bright paints.

Scrappy quilt was a UFO (UnFinished Object) for many years. I decided the little green men would be perfect.

Jumping Rabbit quilt. I love the Crazy 8 pattern. It is quick and easy.

Another easy pattern with butterflies.
Miss You Guys! Happy Quilting!

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