Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Block Book

This month's issue of Love Patchwork & Quilting is out and I have a small project in it. I made a Block Book to help keep blocks organised and tidy while you're working on a project, or two. 

It's a simple pattern, with wadding exposed on the inside to help keep those blocks from slipping about. The pattern is easy peasy, with some extra stiff interfacing to keep the book's shape. 

Mostly I just kind of love my colour choices and am tempted to make a whole quilt using them. I think the cover block would work well in multiples as a whole quilt. 


Monday, 27 April 2015

Easy Bake

One of the presents Helen gave to me at Christmas was a Triple Chocolate Brownie mix she did in a jar. 

All I had to do was melt some butter and beat three eggs. Chuck it all together, give it a quick stir and the work was done. 

Popped them in the oven and they came out great.

Moist, chewy, irristably goodness. Filled with bits of dark and milk chocolate. Can't go wrong with that combination. 

Happy me for having a resourceful daughter who has access to great ideas in the Internet. 


Saturday, 25 April 2015

The Canadian In Me Has Been Known To Rant...

... About the lack of storage in English houses. What's so difficult about built in closets, for goodness sake. It's hard enough living without a basement to put all the 'junk', let alone not having one single place for putting shoes when you come in from outside. 

As the kitchen is the main entrance into our house, the kitchen floor is permanently scattered with shoes. Drives me nuts! 

So himself said he would build a shelf for our shoes. 

Not that it would occur to him to hammer together some bits of MDF and be done with it. 

Why use MDF when you can use maple and walnut? Why build something utilitarian when you can make something beautiful.

And now the shoes are tidy, I'm happy and he got to play with wood. The wonderful thing about himself taking up woodwork is he finally, fully understands my fabric obsession. It's a win win situation for me. 


Wednesday, 22 April 2015

A Rare Occurance

Since I live my life playing catch up it pleases me to no end to be able to say that I received the final Brit Bee medallion for me to work on two days ago and I got it all pieced and done today. 

Unfortunately I can't show you. That will be Hadley's job as when all the tops are finished we will post to the recipients on the same day so we all get our big reveals at the same time. Can. Not. Wait. 

Since I was on a roll of efficiency, I did my Stitch Tease April bee blocks today too. Seriously! I made bee blocks the same month they were due. Unbelievable! 

The final challenge will be to see if I can get around to posting these blocks in April too. Posting, my ultimate hurdle. 


Tuesday, 21 April 2015


It saddens me to say that the reason I went quiet here was because that b**ch cancer took another of my friends a few days ago. I doubt there is one of us who remains untouched by this disease one way or the other, my sympathies for all who's lives it touches. Enough said. 

I quietly started a new hand stitching project Friday. Quiet stitching was what was required. There is an ultimate purpose to this one, but it may have to take a back step while I finish a few other things. 

I also started trimming HSTs from a big bag of them that Trudi (quilting prolifically) gave me. The plan is to make a quilt for Siblings Together from some of them. I've made a quilt for this charity the past two years and feel that it is a small thing to make another. If you want to know more about the charity go to Lynne's blog (Lily's Quilts) and do a search. She has several good posts. 

Above is the first pile of HSTs trimmed. There's 124 in that stack. 

Meanwhile more blocks for my Stitch Tease bee quilt have arrived. Most of them are in now and I'm getting rather excited about how these blocks are going to look all together. 

The blocks above were received from Cindy, Trina and Annabella and are all totally what I hoped for and asked for. 

So I sit here contemplating all the things I want to get done. And I eat cake.

Because that is how I deal with things when life gets me down. I also breathe deep, hold my loved ones close, and try to make sure I see the beauty that is all around. I live in a beautiful village, and the sun has been shining down. 

To be clear though, this photo is around the corner from me. I do not live in this house. I wish! 


Thursday, 16 April 2015

Whilst I Was Away...

... issue 20 of Love Patchwork & Quilting came out. I made a tote bag for this issue.

I'm really proud of this tote. (A) Because 'bag making' is totally out of my comfort zone and coming up with something that had a unique twist really challenged me. And (B) the idea in my brain worked in actuality. (Yes, there was a huge sigh of relief on my part!)

What makes this bag a little different than other totes is the fact that besides the front and back outside pockets created between the bag handles there are pockets on either end as well. A great spot to pop your umbrella, a bottle of water, or half a baguette (joking - sort of!). Plus the seams for the outside pockets are hidden behind the straps for the bag. 

While the pattern for the tote is in issue 20, Love Patchwork & Quilting is offering up the accompanying zippy pouch pattern for free on their blog. 

It's a very simple pouch so if you haven't tackled zippers before this is an easy place to start. And if zippers scare you, I totally get you. It took me over two years to get over my fear and make something with a zipper. I started with a pouch like this. The pouch has a loop so it can be secured inside the tote to hold your sunglasses, cash, or jam for the baguette (joking, again). 

Anyway, it's good to be able to show you something I've sewn. With luck I will do more of that occupation again soon. Thanks for sticking it out through all the non-sewing fun stuff. 


Tuesday, 14 April 2015

And The Holiday Is Over

But the jet lag is kicking butt. More with me than them. Since My last blog post we have had more wonderful times, the highlights of which are -

A day spent at Universal Islands of Adventure where we spent a great deal of our time either getting soaked, or upside down. We were there for ten and a half hours and had a total blast. I'd go back tomorrow given half a chance. 

Then when we flew back to Detroit Francine and I detoured to Pink Castle and I tried not to hyperventilate while I bought a bit of fabric. I kind of got overwhelmed. So wish I lived next door. 

Once back across the border in Canada the girls got a few days with their cousins. As you can tell they benefit from a different gene pool than my two. 

Then we headed for a couple of nights in Toronto with my brother. 

Highlights of our time there included the giant trampoline place. A nighttime visit up the CN Tower. You can tell which child was unphased by the glass floor and which one didn't trust the engineering. We also spent a day at the Ontario Science Centre, where we were joined by an old friend of mine that I've known for about thirty years. Always good to see friends, and introduce your children to them. Thanks for driving down to the city to see us, Gary! (Yup, he reads this blog.)

Toronto also catered to my food side with two Chinese meals, Mexican and an amazing Greek meal on the Danforth. Restaurant choice has to be the thing I miss most about living in a city. We also did a shopping trip to the Eaton Centre, because it just has to be done. 

Then we came home. I've unpacked, sort of maybe. Okay, all the fabric and notions are in the sewing space. I know what is important! 

Besides the Pink Castle extravaganza I had a package from Knotted Thread deliverer to the hotel in Orlando, and some destash purchases. And my bestie had a FQ bundle waiting as a Christmas present for me too. The notions I bought at Joann's. I'd like to say that I won't be buying fabric in a while, but I may have impulsively bought some destash that Aneela Hoey posted online today. 

Okay, someone stop me now. I have a holiday to finish paying for. 


Monday, 6 April 2015

Wet and Wild?

Yesterday was mostly spent upside down or getting soaked to the bone.

Can you spot the girls in the photo on the raft above? Me and the bestie sat the second run on that ride out for the pure pleasure of standing above and shooting them with the water guns. 

It was such a good day. Ten and a half hours were spent at Universal Islands of Adventure and we just went from ride to ride with barely a pause. While we won't discuss cost (because I'll be paying for this one for a while), investing in an express pass for each of us was worth every penny. I think the longest we waited to get on a ride was less than ten minutes. Many rides were done multiple times. The girls gave the day a 10/10 rating. I'll call that a complete success then.

Today we do nothing. Other than a bit of shopping, laze around the pool and go for dinner. Back to the Great White North tomorrow - which thankfully is no longer white. 


Saturday, 4 April 2015


Gorgeous weather, my girls and my bestie, and a water park. Pure bliss.

We spent all day at Blizzard Beach. I'd still be there if (a) the girls hadn't been tired, and (b) they didn't close at 6pm. Hope you're all enjoying your Easter weekend.