Author Archives: Bernie

2022 Positivity QAL – 2nd Link Up

We have reached the middle of July which means it is time to link up your quilt tops for the 2022 Positivity QAL! I can’t quite explain how we are already to this point. It sure doesn’t feel like that much time has passed. This is a fun link up and there will be a drawing for prizes at the end of this week!!

I have to be honest with you. I only have 26 blocks completed. This is not enough for a quilt top so I cannot share one today. I could make up all sorts of reasons for this. Instead I will just blame it on Julia. She was home for a month for summer break and we got to spend lots of time together.

Enjoying an iced Chai near the harbor.
Having lunch in Port Townsend
Taking silly pictures with Beau, the dog she cared for while his humans were away.

The time passed and a few days ago Julia returned to California and her college life. This means more time for sewing. I will keep working on the blocks for this cute southwestern themed quilt. The pieces are cut so I need to keep plugging away at it. You know, watching how quickly others are getting their blocks and quilt tops done, I have decided I must be a very slow quilter. These are easy blocks but it seems like at each sitting I only get four or five completed. (There were also a couple of times I had to rip out the blocks because I was distracted by an audio book or podcast and got sloppy.) Whatever the reason, I am not one who can whip out a quilt top. Slow and steady wins the race…

Please do link up your progress – I am excited to see what you have made!! By chance if you are participating and do not have a blog post to link, you are welcome to send me a picture of the quilt top and I will add it to this post. You will be included in the drawing for prizes at the end of the week.

Updating this post to add photos of quilt tops sent to me today. 🙂

This beauty is a scrappy version made by Wendy F.
Love the bright colors on scrappy gray backgrounds made by Amanda R.
Another beauty. Lisa T made this and I love how she alternated the direction of her blocks. This creates lots of movement in her flimsy.

Also – an update on the previous post which included a giveaway of the My Sewing Workshop book. The winner has been selected and it is Kathy U!! Congrats to Kathy.

My Sewing Workshop – Book Review & Giveaway

Receiving a review copy this new book by C&T Publishing, My Sewing Workshop, by Annabel Wrigley, made me so excited to teach my grand daughters to sew. Wrigley wrote the book as a guid for young people to learn to sew on their own. If the girls were about 10 – 12 years old, the book would be perfect for that. Because they are much younger, I would utilize the book differently. For me, the book is the perfect outline of how to teach children to sew. It is like having a complete lesson plan with tons of projects all photographed and explained perfectly. What a treasure this book is!

Cover of the book (pc C&T Publishing)

The layout of the book is done well. Wrigley explains the process of threading a machine, the basic parts of a sewing machine, as well as the difference in the types of fabric used in the projects (cotton, felt and canvas).

The projects are earmarked as Easy Peasy, Teeny Bit Challenging, and the most difficult – Take Your Time and Ask for Help. She does an excellent job explaining safety and is sure to tell a student when they need to have the help of an adult (eg using a staple gun or hot glue gun).

A wonderful way to get warmed up with the sewing machine. (Credit to A Wrigley and CT Publishing)

This is such a great exercise. I know my five year old granddaughter would love to pick the thread color and trace the lines. I also know I wouldn’t have thought to have her go through the exercise. Wrigley moves on to a very large zig zag for the student to trace which teaches the process of leaving the needle down and pivoting at each corner. H would want to change thread colors a million times but that is the fun of it and it is certain this Grammy has thread in every color of the rainbow for her to explore.

This is genius! (Credit to A Wrigley and CT Publishing)

Hand stitching is an important part of being able to sew. There are seams to close and fun embroidery to learn. I loved this suggestion for sewing an opening closed. A while back, H was working on a little sewing project with me (I will post more on that later) and there was a bit of hand sewing to be done. I told her I would do it for her but as usual, her response was “no Grammy, I can do it”. Basically she did know how to do it but holding the project and moving the needle in and out was challenging. I think if I had her hold the object between her knees she would have been more successful.

Beyond hand stitching there are also lessons for sewing on a button, inserting a zipper and doing appliqué. This book explains it all!

Let’s check out some of the projects that are offered. The ideas are adorable and there is something for every child. (Side note here – the only area I find lacking in the book is none of the projects show a boy sewing or use masculine themes. Many of them could be adjusted toward a boy. I realize not many boys enjoy sewing but this is changing and should be encouraged in publications such as this.)

Super cute bags with appliqué. (Credit to A Wrigley and CT Publishing)

The cross body pouch shown above is classified as “Teeny Bit Challenging” so it is in the middle, skill wise. Depending on the age of the student, these ratings will sometimes be less accurate. But the book is written for independent use by a middle school child. If I were using it for H, this project would be too difficult. However there are lots of easier projects to be made.

Simple appliqué with some accent stitching. (Credit to A Wrigley and CT Publishing)

This project really appeals to me. Cupcakes are fun at any age and this would be so easy to make. Cutting out the shapes and fusing to the background, then adding the top stitching would be something a beginner could achieve and be successful. Also, one could use any shape here. (By the way, crayon books provide a great opportunity for easy appliqué stencils.) There are many more projects including a cover for a tablet or iPad, a sweet lavender sachet, and fun decorations for their bedroom. I love the yo-yo garland which uses felt to make various sizes of yo-yos. There is a fun bunting and a fabric tassel garland (no sewing needed here). I strongly recommend the book.

I could see many ways this book could be utilized. Leaders for Girl Scouts or 4-H could use this when helping kids work toward a sewing and/or crafting badge. Grammy’s such as me could teach their little ones to sew. It would be a wonderful gift for that special child or grandchild during the holidays. Wrap it in fabric instead of paper for a double gift!

If you aren’t familiar with Annabel Wrigley already, here are her social media feeds and website. She is very clever and has taught many students. Year of great experience is shared with us in this book.

To making things even more exciting, I have one copy of the e-book to give to a lucky reader! If you are interested in winning the e-book, please leave me a comment telling a memory about when you learned to sew. Who taught you? How old were you? I would love to know. If you want to read about my early experiences with sewing, check out this post. Good luck all!

Finally! 2021 Positivity Quilt Finish

Someone said ‘every finish line is the start of a new race’ but for me it is the start of a new quilt. I am now allowed to work on 2022’s Positivity Quilt! As well as all of the other little distractions that pop up along the way.

This quilt doesn’t have nearly as many blocks as Preeti (Sew Preeti Quilts) called for but I decided it was a large enough quilt at this point. All of the pluses are either a shade of blue or yellow and with one exception, all backgrounds are various grays. The blue cross with yellow background came from Alycia (Alycia Quilts). She included this with her quilt when she donated it – you know, a year ago, when we were supposed to have finished these! I thought it was a perfect pop for this quilt so my quilt was technically made by me and Alycia!

There is a border of deep yellow framing the blocks and a dark blue binding. The binding was selected by my sisters. I texted them when I just couldn’t decide and they chose blue. Smart call on their part, as this looks great!

The backing is a piece called Abiding Reverie from Art Gallery Fabric. I had it in my shop because it reminded me of vintage sheets (which you all know I have a strong affinity for). It is such a cheerful fabric. There is still some left which makes me happy.

After doing straight line quilting both horizontally and vertically, I did this little design on each plus. I am so happy with the new machine my sister gave me. It is so easy to quilt on compared the the older machine I was using. I still don’t have a walking foot yet and the straight line quilting was actually more of a challenge than the FMQ. I had a few puckers since the fabric wasn’t being moved from top and bottom.

This is a finish and I am thrilled with it. I think I will wait and mail it to Mercy with the second quilt. Having this beauty sitting in my sewing room will motivate me to finish the 2022 project! Thank you Preeti for hosting this event, both last year and this!

Linking to my usual favorites. Check them out at the top of the page, under Link Ups.

Summer Squirrels are Happening

Happy 4th everyone! It sure doesn’t feel like July here. We are having a bout of unseasonably cool weather and the high for today is only supposed to be 69 degrees (about 20 degrees C). We are heading to my sister’s house for a BBQ but it won’t be very warm out!

Whenever I am ‘supposed’ to be working on something it seems like everything but that project appeals to me. Why does this happen? I should be working on piecing the blocks for the 2022 Positivity QAL. I have the pieces cut and I did get some of them pieced. I think about 20 blocks are made. But all sorts of other ideas keep popping into my head. So you know what I did? I set those QAL blocks aside and played with other fabrics.

Part of the reason is I wanted to make things that take no thought. The last couple of days I have had a cold dragging me down. Summer colds are unfair in my opinion and this one opened the way for a couple of summer squirrel projects.

Small flags for my girls

Here is one project but I actually made this one about a month ago and never shared it. We have one very tattered USA flag that was left at the house by the previous owners. When the girls were here they marched around with it. It looks awful and there was only one flag to march with. Not a great situation. I found some patriotic fabric on the shelf and made two little flags for them.

Backing for the flags

I think they are super cute. The girls weren’t overwhelmed with them. Maybe the timing wasn’t right. Or maybe they prefer marching around with just one worn out flag? Who knows? But these are sweet and I am sure they will use them at some point. I did glue the fabric to the dowel so the flag stays on the pole. A few drops of superglue on the dowel and that fabric is well attached.

Back to this week’s squirrel. While I was dragging around with this annoying cold I decided I wanted to make something really simple. I had just read through the Quilting Daily email newsletter where they quoted McCalls Quilting editor, Lori Baker, “If you feel like a challenge, do something new, learn something. And if you are feeling a little fragile, do something simple so your success is assured.” Mistakes happen all the time but I am more prone to them if tired or not feeling well. So an easy project was called for.

New summer placemats

This floral fabric was left over from making a table runner for my DIL several years ago. It is a home dec fabric from Jo-Ann’s. I washed the fabric and some matching solid fabric and dried it on high heat to make sure it was pre-shrunk. After pressing it, I cut three rectangles measuring 13″ x 19″ and did the same with the lining.

I assembled all three, right sides together, and stitched the perimeter. Flipped them right side out, poked out the corners and pressed them again. Finally I top-stitched around the edge at the 1/8″ mark. I think they are really cute.

Clearly I should work as a photography stylist. This table looks absolutely incredible. Hahaha. The placemats look cute and since we have white dishes everything works together. Simple and successful – just what I needed. Plus I used up fabric off my shelf.

Last weekend two of my sons and their wives took Julia out to celebrate her 21st birthday. Her birthday was in May but since she wasn’t home to celebrate, the kids wanted to take her out. It seemed like they had a great time. However three days later, one of my boys and one of my daughters-in-law tested positive for Covid. Yuk. Because it was Andrew from one family and Shar from the other, it was clear the contact was made while they were all out together. They both first showed symptoms on the same day. Even worse, this whole group was excited because they were supposed to go on a camping trip up at Mt. Ranier which they had been planning for weeks and weeks. The trip was cancelled. My older grand daughter was so distraught when told they couldn’t go on the trip. Her mama set up a tent in the backyard so they could pretend camp while Daddy was in bed feeling miserable.

Playing in their PJs in a tent in the backyard.

This fun didn’t last for too long. From here it only got worse. My other DIL and both grand daughters got sick and tested positive.

Doesn’t she look miserable? Poor girl.

Such a rotten time for all of them. Julia escaped it as did one of the guys. But the rest of them have been fairly sick. Julia had to isolate for quite a while and wear a mask when she wasn’t in her room. But it has been long enough now we feel confident she won’t get it.

Playing with Dad’s video game is a special treat

It seems like the girls are over the worst of it. It is amazing how quickly children can bounce back but not so much with the adults. One of my DIL’s still feels awful. What a rotten virus this is. This picture shows the detritus of a house with two sick adults and two sick kids. Blankets everywhere, water bottles and snacks. Playing with dad’s video game is a special treat though and the girls enjoyed this diversion. I wish I could have them helped out. It has been a tough week for them.

I will be back in a couple of days to share a finish. I got my 2021 Positivity quilt finished and just need to take some pictures and wash it. Can’t wait to share it with you. Enjoy the holiday everyone!

New Dresses for My Girls

We just had three days of summery weather! When it hit 90 degrees, Ray and I once again felt sure we have made the right decision in moving up here! Neither of us like hot weather and love the cooler weather we have in Washington. We are back to cool temps and a breeze today. Perfect!

In between working on quilts that need to be finished, I have been making two dresses for the girls. Before leaving California, my friend Stephanie was clearing out some fabrics she didn’t think she would use. Stephanie is a generous soul and she gave me so much fabric! Among the pieces were two cute prints.

These two pieces are from a line called Stitch Cats by Clothworks. They are super cute and I thought the girls would enjoy something made from them.

I made the dress for little sister first. I used the Geranium pattern by Rae Hoekstra. I have to tell you, I am so rusty at making garments. Also, I didn’t like the way the closure was done on the back of the dress.

From the Geranium pattern by Made by Rae

It seemed like there should be an extended overlap (a tab of sorts) for the buttons and buttonholes but the designer just has it overlapped without this. Does that make sense?

Since the pattern didn’t provide this and I didn’t like the way it looked, I decided to use a ribbon closure. Note: The ribbons are cut extra long for now. I want my son or DIL to trim them after deciding how long they should be to take the dress on and off of A. It turns out we only need to untie the top bow to take it on and off.

A’s dress is made with the larger print and the bodice is lined with the smaller print. It is nice and long so she should be able to wear it for a while – these girls seem to grow about 1/2 inch each day!

I added a pocket for her treasures. It was so cute when I first put the dress on her. She had a tiny bag of Skittles that big sister got from a piñata earlier in the day. She immediately put the Skittles into her pocket.

This is the dress I made for H. The Geranium pattern wasn’t a large enough size so I switched over to a free tutorial by Life Sew Savory called Tank Dress Pattern. (Note – I have used a number of her free patterns and they are pretty darn good. She has so many on her site!) This dress is much the same as little sister’s though I used more of the smaller print for the bodice and skirt. The buttons were handled the same way on this pattern, without a tab, but I just gave in and overlapped the pieces as she instructed. (I need to figure out how to fix this issue myself for next time.)

Because H is into all things pink and sparkly, I chose these heart shaped gemstone buttons I saw in JoAnn’s. In actuality, she doesn’t need functional buttons for the dress as it goes right over her head without unbuttoning the dress. I could cut the front bodice as one piece if I were to make this again.

Above is the obligatory picture of the girls in their new dresses. They gave me all of 30 seconds to take this before they ran off so it isn’t the best shot. These two had better things to do than placate Grammy with pictures.

The next morning H was trying on shoes from a box of hand me downs she received. She is in love with these sparkly green flats! I love her pose here with her legs crossed in such a lady-like fashion. (I also love that she chose to put her new dress when she got up the next day). Overall, I am happy with the dresses. Making them was enjoyable and I feel like I am getting back into the groove of garment sewing. I have some fabric for a shirt for myself and hope to work on it soon.

I am not one to write about politics on my blog. Everyone has different beliefs and that is ok with me. I don’t want to get into it. But the last couple of weeks have really been a tough time. So sharing these two pictures of my girls seemed a great way to close – with feelings of hope in our future generations of very strong, capable, powerful women.

2022 Positivity Quilt Along Link Up

Good morning all! Hope you are having a lovely weekend. Believe it or not, it is time to link up a progress shot of your 2022 Positivity Quilt. This might mean sharing a couple of blocks with us. Or maybe you have actually stitched a few rows together. Maybe, like me, you are still in the earliest stages and have been cutting your pieces out. Wherever you might be, let us enjoy your progress so far.

I started cutting blocks for mine. Before leaving California, my friend Stephanie gave me a stack of leftover fabric from a western themed quilt she made. This line of fabric is called Dreamcatcher and was made by Whistler Studios . It is not my usual style fabric but this quilt is not for me. Being destined for Mercy Hospital, there is no way of knowing who will receive it. With Mercyful Quilts, the family of the patient chooses the quilt and oftentimes, they choose one that is meaningful to their relationship with the person they are saying goodbye to. Thus it is good to have all sorts of choices. A variety of colors, styles, and themes are advantageous. So this quilt will have a strong Native American, western vibe to it. Some of the fabric is directional and I am hoping this doesn’t create issues as I assemble the blocks. That remains to be seen.

2021 Positivity Quilt

As I was cutting the pieces and getting excited to start assembling blocks, my practical side grabbed hold and told me to finish up last year’s quilt first. Most of the top was done and it didn’t make sense to move on until I got this completed. I set the fabric aside and pulled out last year’s plus quilt. I didn’t make more blocks. Instead, I went with what I had completed. To increase the size, I added a yellow border. Then got it basted and ready for quilting. On Friday I began quilting it. It feels so much better to work in a more orderly fashion. My husband will be the first to tell you I often flit from one thing to another which is, for the most part, unproductive. Once this quilt is done, I will start sewing blocks for the next one.

So this is where I am at for now. How about you? Have you got lots of blocks assembled? Maybe your quilt top is even finished. Share it with us here. One of the best parts of a quilt along is the camaraderie of sewing together. Also, since we are making the same pattern, it is so cool to see it in any number of fabric choices. I look forward to seeing all of them. Link up is open until Saturday, July 2, 2022. Thanks for joining in and sewing for Mercyful Quilts!

Meadow Quilt is a Finish!

Making a quilt is not a quick endeavor. At least for me it isn’t. Back in 2016 I read a tutorial by Bonjour Quilts and left a comment about how much I loved the quilt. Then in 2020, in a newsletter by Bonjour Quilts (side note – if you don’t receive her newsletter, check it out. Kirsty writes a great newsletter and I very much enjoy reading it) I was reminded of the quilt. At that time, I started cutting pieces for the background. I believe this was at the beginning of the pandemic. Fast forward to 2021, I decided to finish the quilt so I could give it to my nephew and his bride when they married in July 2021. Well, then we decided to list the house and move so all sewing came to an abrupt halt.

With my sewing room (almost) set up and my time freed up, I am sewing and quilting again! I had the Meadow quilt top finished and basted before we moved, so I started to quilt it. Before basting it, I did some FMQ over the flowers in the center. I knew I wanted to secure them tightly, even though they are fused to the base. However I didn’t want all of that to show on the back. I did a preliminary set of stitches before basting and then finished securing the flowers after it was basted.

The background is free motion quilted with whatever came to mind. There are swirls, basic stippling, some flowers, hearts, sunshines and a few words here and there. On the top I used an off-white Glide thread and the bottom is a pale green Glide thread. (I am a big fan of Glide for free motion quilting).

Every meadow has a few butterflies fluttering about, right? I fussy cut these and fused them to the top. Using Perle cotton, I did some basic stitching around the edges to help them stand out a bit.

I forgot to take a shot with the backing showing but in this one you can see a bit of the corner. It is a 60″ wide voile by Frou Frou. Grassy green with tiny white stars on it, the fabric is so soft. I think it gives a cuddly feel to the quilt. (I have had this on the shelf for a long time so don’t know that it would be available anymore?)

The pictures were all taken in our yard. Right now everything is so green. Foxglove are standing tall in the backyard, giving a meadow like feel to it.

I am so happy with this finish. It is unusual but not difficult. I actually think this is the case with many of Kirsty’s (Bonjour Quilts) patterns and tutorials. It is on the way to the bride and groom, just in time for their first anniversary!! I hope they love it.

Sharing at my favorite link ups – see the list at the top of the page for the details!

REMINDER: The first link up for 2022 Positivity QAL opens this Sunday, June 26th. Please come back (here) then to link up and show us your progress with your blocks. I am looking forward to seeing the different color combos!!

What??? An Actual Finish?

Can it be? A quilt? Yes, I actually finished a quilt!! It was in December, 2021 that I last finished a quilt. Crazy times around our house the last six months!

A couple of weeks ago I saw this crib on Facebook Marketplace for $50. It seemed like a good deal as it transitions to a toddler bed as well. My two year old grand daughter is still in a crib but I suspect she will soon be changing over to a toddler bed. This should work for sleepovers for quite sometime.

The room that the girls sleep in is pink, like Pepto Bismol pink. If I didn’t dislike painting so much I would repaint it. But the girls like the pink and I don’t like painting so it will stay this way for a bit. I had some pink solid from Art Gallery Fabric and quickly made a fitted sheet for the mattress. This was both a super easy and fun project that I made with this tutorial by See Kate Sew.

I also had a quilt top ready to go that I made wayyy back in May of 2020. I used a pattern by Meadow Mist Designs called Pike’s Peak.

My version looks very different from the example on the pattern cover. But that is the joy of each interpretation of a pattern. The fabric choices often make it completely unique.

The quilting is very simple. Small cross hatch done on the diagonal completes the center block. Then a straight line every two inches for the open gray spaces. These lines were marked with a Hera marker and took no time at all to stitch. Easy peasy. I figured if this was to be used by a toddler, nothing fancier then that was warranted.

It is backed with a piece of Alison Glass fabric and bound with a tonal fabric from Art Gallery Fabric.

It looks great in the girls’ room. When I showed A her new bed at Grammy’s house she was quite happy and said “cozy, cozy bed”. She loves her bed at home and I think she will be happy in this one too.

We set up Julia’s old twin bed from years ago. My husband made the headboard and footboard so we stored it for the last 12 years or so. I am happy to have it set up for H now. She chose the quilt for her bed. (This quilt was gifted to me from a friend when we moved. It is a pretty quilt with all Kaffe Fassett fabrics and backed in soft minky.) When H saw it, she was taken with it and asked if it could be on her bed. So now we have beds set up for both girls!

My sewing room continues to improve. Last week Ray spent a day helping me organize it. He got the sewing desk put together for me.

He also got a bed set up in the room for guests. Of course as soon as the bed was set up, I was laying projects on it and now it is covered 1/2 way with my projects. He laughed when he saw how fast that happened! But at least we have a queen bed for guests if needed.

I am working on binding another quilt today. Hard to believe but I have another finish and will share it soon. Back soon with pictures – this one is really looking nice.

Sharing to my favorite link ups. Please take a look at the top of the page for details!

A Patriotic Finish & Giveaway!!

Note: Giveaway now closed. I actually selected two winners because I found enough for two kits. Winners have been notified. Hope to hear from them soon so I can mail off their prize!

Good morning all! I intended to post this before Memorial Day. Somehow it didn’t happen so I am writing it this morning. No worries though. While patriotic projects are good at any time of year; May, June and July usually put people in the mood for red, white and blue with Memorial Day, Flag Day and Independence Day during these months.

The front deck.

Doesn’t this look nice? Here is the backstory of this little wall hanging.

Feels great to be sewing again!

My sister recently sold (actually practically gave) me a Bernina sewing machine and a Juki serger. I have not sewn with a Bernina before so I have been watching YouTube and practicing on simple projects. Leftover from the shop, I have a couple of these panels and some of the coordinates from the Home Of the Free line that I had carried.

This shows most of the panel. It has the welcome portion and lots of little sayings as well. I took the stripe at the bottom and added it to the welcome portion to balance things out. Then I basted it together and did some basic quilting to hold everything together.

It measures 15″ x 24″. For the binding I used one of the coordinates. It is super simple but I think it makes a cute welcome sign.

Cute paisley backing.

For the backing, I chose this paisley print. The reds are the same tone so it looks wonderful together. I love paisleys. Even if this is on the back side and no one will really see it., I know it is there!

Now I have a cute welcome sign on the front porch to takes us through summer months.

How about you? Would you like to make one? Or maybe a quilt with these fabrics? I still have enough fabric to gift a kit for your project! It includes a star print instead of the paisley but you’ll have enough to play with to make whatever you’d like. I would love to see what you do with this!

GIVEAWAY NOW CLOSED.

Please leave a comment for me if you are interested in this kit. No pattern included so you’ll have to be creative and work something out. Since this is a patriotic, American fabric, the giveaway is limited to US residents. I will choose a winner on Sunday afternoon. Good luck and have a great weekend!

Sharing at Finished or not Friday, Brag About Your Beauties and TGIFF over at Anja Quilts.

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Reminder!! The Positivity 2022 QAL has begun. We are choosing fabrics and cutting pieces. At least that is where I am. Hoping to start putting blocks together soon though. Check out fabric and cutting instructions at Sew Preeti Quilts. Hope you will join us!

A Week’s Worth of Daily Life

Life in Washington continues to be more comfortable. Over the past week it seems like a lot has been going on both with me as well as my kids. I got a bedroom in the house painted, did a little crafting, and some sewing. My kids – well, their idea of daily lives differ from mine quite a bit (which is as it should be).

This mama had a litter of 21 piglets1

Julia is taking a class on swine management this quarter and she loves it. Springtime means birthing – lots and lots of piglets have been born over the last two weeks or so. When she was ‘on duty’ last week, she helped this sow deliver her litter of 21 babies. By the time Julia got there, seven had been birthed. She was there for the birth of the next 14 which took a couple of hours. She said it was hard work, fast paced and exhilarating all at the same time. She loved every bit of it.

Her hands are a little gross but that is part of the deal. She is in her element with this sort of thing and is hoping for another mama to birth piglets during her shifts this coming week. I can say for sure, pig birthing was not a part of the curriculum during my college experience!

The beekeeping family!

My son and daughter in law have been studying the world of beekeeping over the past months. They came across an opportunity to buy a whole beekeeper’s set up (gotta love Facebook Marketplace!) so they are fully experiencing the world of bees. H is right there with them. This process is much more complex than I knew.

Helping Dad.

These experiences are priceless. I am so happy to see them so excited and learning this together.

Before!

On to my less exciting projects! This picture shows Julia’s bedroom when we bought the house. It was lavender – like really purple! We didn’t like it at all! So now that lots of the unpacking is done, I found a day to paint it. The room isn’t too big so, with a little help from my husband, it only took one day to get it done.

After!

Doesn’t it look lovely? It is a buttery yellow shade now. When we moved here, Ray remarked at how much paint was left in the garage. So we browsed the existing paint and I chose this yellow. There was a whole gallon of good quality paint, and it covered in just about one coat. I am all for using up what is already on hand. Plus the color is very pretty. I do want to make different draperies for the windows. That gray is totally wrong in this room. I am happy this is done because Julia comes home in two weeks!

Before!

OK – next incredibly exciting project! Sometime ago, my mom asked me to get rid of this old wicker basket for her but somehow I never did. It just sat in the garage and when we moved, Ray tossed it into the truck. I like the shape of the basket though so off I went in search of spray paint. We didn’t have any I liked so this project did require a quick trip to Lowe’s.

After the first coat of paint.

I chose white ‘chalk’ paint. It looks so cool! I painted outside because wow, this stuff smells awful.

After!

Isn’t this cute? I think I will put it in the sewing room after it airs out a bit. It is tall enough for rolls of wrapping paper and I also keep a selection of cut dowels for hanging various size wall quilts. I can see this coming in handy upstairs!

I met up with my two local sisters on Monday. We had planned to get coffee and take a walk. However we made the mistake of getting the coffee and parking our posteriors on this bench. After 90 minutes, it was clear we were not going to take a walk at all. So we enjoyed a nice sister visit and some good coffee.

After the sisters left, I headed to the library which was just behind the bench we sat on.

The library in Port Orchard

Somehow having a library along the coast feels very decadent to me. Who can go to the library and the beach in one trip? Me, that’s who! I love it.

A stack of books

Here is the stack I brought home and my thoughts so far. Love the Denese Schmidt book and the Quilts Made Modern by Weeks Ringle. Both have fun info and some great patterns. The Simple Simon book is what I thought it might be. While it does include some cute bits from Liz and Elizabeth, the quilts very, very simple. This book is great for someone who is truly making their first quilt. The book on succulents is great. I love succulents and had to give mine away before we moved up here. Time to get some new ones started! Kate Hudson’s book, Pretty Fun, is pretty awful. I tried to like it – but yikes it is all fluff and a waste of time. So after a few chapters, I closed it and moved on. I am in the middle of While You’re Here Doc about a country vet in Maine. I love this sort of thing. I am thinking it is probably similar to the James Herriot book series – well, I think it probably is. I haven’t read those. But if I were to guess, this is the sort of story he writes! Hahaha. It is entertaining though. Finally I will be reading the Laurie Frankel book next – I love her books so much. I am currently listening to the audio version of Goodbye For Now.

OK – that does it for now. I am at my son’s house, babysitting the youngest while he is off celebrating H’s last day of preschool. She was so excited! She told me she is graduating to kindergarten today but has to wait for summer break first. They celebrate with a hot dog bbq and taking turns riding the horses that live at the preschool. She had a great year here. How on earth is it the end of the school year already???

Remember!! The second annual Positivity QAL kicks off this weekend, Sunday May 29th. I really hope you will join us and sew along for Mercyful Quilts!