Thursday, April 24, 2008

A break

I've decided to take a blog break.
I was going to write a long and convoluted post about it and even take a photo especially for the post, but that's exactly why I need to take a break.
Blogging is in the wrong spot on my priority list.
Lately I've been feeling out of control and like I'm not giving my life the attention it deserves.

I will be back. I love all the friends I've made through my blog and the wonder of having contact with so many people I can relate to and who can relate to me.

I just have to figure out where it all fits.

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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Baby Jane

Since I'm still working on the "Evolution of Scrappy", I thought I'd update everyone one the progress of my Baby Jane quilt.

It is such fun to see all the little blocks starting to come together.
The Dear Baby Jane blog has close to 100 members now and I'm truly excited about seeing all those quilts when they're done.
If you'd like to see some of the wonderful blocks made by our members, do visit our Flickr group.
If you're interested in seeing my little blocks more closely, check out my Dear Jane set or have a look at the blog.

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Monday, April 21, 2008

The Evolution of Scrappy: Part II

I hope I'm not boring you...

If you're a reader, have a look at this site. Monica sent me an invite and it's great to be able to keep track of books read and have a list of to-reads.
Today I'm going on a very special shopping trip with someone. Fun!

(Added later:Think I'm nuts? Check this out.)

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Friday, April 18, 2008

The Evolution of Scrappy: Part I

It's slowly taking shape...

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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Scrappy

I've been cutting my scraps into strips according to Bonnie's scrap user's system. I haven't gotten very far. It is much more time consuming than it seems.
Since I'm on a fabric diet right now due to some major unplanned for expenses over here (including, but not limited to, Jo), I decided that it's time to make a scrap quilt. A scrap quilt is different from a stash quilt, which "Winging It" definitely was. Scrap quilts require years of accumulated, well, scraps.
Since I seam seem to be teasing this week...

...this is what I have right now.
Off to go cut more 2" strips.

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Monday, April 14, 2008

Teaser

This morning we overslept by an hour and I still got everyone where they needed to be in time. It involved 5 minute showers and dealing with rush hour traffic, but it happened. I even packed lunch. I'm Supermom, I swear.

I'm working on a little something-something for Kathy. It's going to be great, I tell you.

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Fighting the recession

Lately I've noticed how expensive things have gotten. I paid $8 for an average sized container of hot chocolate recently.

So meet the new Frugaltails. I've decided to at least investigate ways of trimming our cost of living. We're kind of picky and I'm sure some of these things will not work for our family but at least I'll be able to say I tried.

Experiment 1: Dog Biscuits

Sydney eats Milk-bones. Actually she eats anything, but we buy her Milk-bones as snacks. Milk-bones are pricey and she gets 3-5 a day - one every time we leave her alone, and very often, one to get her to come inside and stop yapping.
I scanned the web and found this recipe (Basic Dog Treats). The result - 250 very tasty little heart-shaped biscuits. I haven't actually calculated the cost, but I'm sure it's MUCH less than Milk-bones. (And Gavin claims that, if I added a little salt, he would eat these too.)


Experiment 2: Laundry Detergent

If you scan the web you will come across many, many "recipes" for homemade laundry soap. Some are dry mixes and some gooey stuff you have to store in LARGE buckets.
I chose to try a dry mix.
The ingredients are:
1 bar Fels Naptha soap, grated
1 c Borax
1 c Washing Soda
1/4 c OxyClean
It says to use 1 tablespoon per load, but I've been using 2.
I've only done 3 loads using this and haven't determined the long-term results yet.
I estimated the cost and it doesn't actually seem cheaper than the big Costco buckets of detergent, but I don't have the exact results yet.
Stay tuned.
(After taking the photo I put everything in the food processor because the yellow soap didn't seem to mix well with the other ingredients. It helped a little.)

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Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Four hours later...


Thanks for all the truthful comments on "the block". I feel much better about this one. Phew!

Funny thing is, I designed that original block on EQ5 and was very impressed with myself. I liked it so much I designed a whole quilt around it.
And then I made the block...

(The little dot on the block is just dew from the wet grass.)

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Oh, the doubt

I must be very insecure although you'd never be able to tell if you spoke to me.
This is the block I made for Amanda in the Virtual Quilting bee.

You can see the quilts she wanted us to use for inspiration over here.
I'm not fishing for compliments here. Please give me your honest opinion. Something about this block bothers me. See if you can tell what it is. I think I'm going to rip it up right now.

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Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Let's paws for a second

I'm continuing finishing up week this week since last week wasn't very productive in that respect.

These are my buttons for Michelle's Embroidered Button Swap. The theme this time is "Animal Fair". You can see photos of more buttons in the Flickr group.

I love French knots. Very therapeutic.

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Monday, April 7, 2008

A little bit better

Wow! I want to thank everyone out there for all the positive feedback on the "winging it" quilt. I had to deflate my head a little this weekend or it wouldn't have fit through the door...

Have you ever looked at something around your house and wondered "What was I thinking?". The foyer has been bothering me for about a year but I just don't quite have a solution yet.
The monkey, elephant and palm tree HAD to go however.

Gavin takes beautiful photos and my current plan is to frame three of them in black frames and hang them above the chair. I just haven't found the right three yet.
In the mean time, this is the temporary solution. The positioning is a little off since I just used pre-cut mats in the frame and the golden frame is not quite "it" either, but I think it's a little better.

And look at the beautiful flowers I got on Saturday. I wish they could last forever.

(The photos on the wall are this one and this one.)

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Thursday, April 3, 2008

Finished up!

I finished the "winging it" quilt.

It was loosely based on Denyse Schmidt's Hop, Skip & Jump quilt but I really just looked at the photo and went from there.
It's about 60"x65" and made ENTIRELY from stash fabrics. The only thing I bought was the batting. Of course I actually bought everything in the quilt at some point...
As you can probably see from the multitude of photos, I'm very happy with this one.

I added a little twist to the quilting in the form of a tiny leaf every so often. You really have to study the quilt to notice them though.

The binding is a tiny checkerboard - the only fabric I had enough of.

I didn't have enough of anything for the back, so I had to piece. Another happy accident. I think it almost looks like another quilt.



Because I already have so many quilts, I'm seriously considering listing this one on Etsy. It does look really good on the chair in the entryway though...

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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Spring break


It's Spring break which means not a lot of peace and quiet, which translates to not too much getting done.

I'm working on completing a couple of WIPs. Amanda decided that this would be finish it up week and I'm joining in, although some of my projects are rather big and may need the entire week to get done.

We've had rain, three inches of snow, hail, and a very scary thunderstorm around here this week (and it's only Tuesday!). It does look like Spring may be around the corner though.

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