Friday, March 30, 2012

UFO: Kick in the Pants and Flying Geese

Kick in the Pants
I think that's what I should call this UFO.
It has been sitting in this box and on my list of UFOs to finish up for several years.
Now if I just had a Kick in the Pants I could get it out and sew on it.
Last weekend I finally got it out of the closet - that's step #1!  LOL
Took off the lid and thought "Oh yeah, it has green in it" I forgot it has been so long.
Good the instructions are right here too.
And see that little bity check? (I circled it in red so you could find it easier) - I was smart enough to make a check mark as I was making this.  Now I know where I left off. (Believe me I'm not usually that smart!)
Oh look here's the pattern too. That's right, I remember now, it's called Eternity.
Oh my gosh I don't believe this, I was actually smart enough to label the blocks as I made them.  
I promised myself I would work on it for 15 minutes per day. After all that is the suggestion for getting UFO's finished up.  We shall see it it works.  I did work on it on Sunday. 
In the meanwhile Hubby worked on his Flying Geese Quilt.
This was from Eleanor Burn's Flying Geese Quilt Book. I posted about it here. It is really cool because her method makes four geese at once and before we knew it he had all 36 geese made.
And then he was able to sew them in rows.  
In the meanwhile, I cut my blocks and ate peanuts.  Hey, what's a girl suppose to do when her husband is hogging the sewing machine?
The correct answer is drink beer too!  LOL!!

Happy Stitching,
Nicey Linda

Monday, March 26, 2012

Giveaway & Review: Eleanor Burn's Set In Triangle Ruler

Oh Dear!  I can't believe that I've missed out on Eleanor Burn's Set-In Triangle Ruler as I've been making all these set on point quilts throughout the years. Please tell me this is a brand new ruler so that I don't have to feel like a I've been missing out.

I just work with my standard rulers, my 6x24, my 6x6 and my 12x12.   Then I got the Eleanor Burn's Flying Geese Rulers and those made life easier - and more fun. 

Now I see that could/should be using this Set-In Triangle Ruler.

I could have used it on these blue triangles - instead of cutting my fabric the wrong size, not once but twice!
I  do plan to use it for the next set of  triangles for this quilt.  See how easy and nice that will be?
The markings on the ruler are very easy to read - and there is a 1/4 inch guideline around the edge - so I'll know exactly where to cut!  Thank goodness, I really need that. This really will make triangles more fun. 

It's really large - 15 inches from the tip (top) straight down the middle to the base and 30 inches from bottom tip to bottom tip. It is large enough to measure and easily handle large triangles like the ones on my Lisbeth's Garden queen size quilt. Also, it is made of heavy duty acrylic and is top quality. I really like that about it.
This will be the ruler I will use from now on when making all my set on point quilts.  Also, I was thinking this certainly will be handy for squaring up quilt corners. I've had that problem before, wanting to square up my completed quilt but not having a big enough ruler.  This Set-In Triangle Ruler will also help me when I'm marking my quilts for quilting. How nice is that?    

I think you can all tell I think this is a must have ruler and I'm pretty excited about it!
Thanks Eleanor for providing us with such a wonderful ruler! 

Oh, you want to know about the Give-away?
It consists of the Eleanor Burn's Book "Tales of First Ladies" and this Set-In Triangle Ruler.
Sorry, because of shipping constraints this one will have to be for the USA only. 

To enter, just leave me a comment letting me what other rulers or notion you have found to make life fun.
If you entered the give-away on the previous post, your in! Leave one here and you'll be in for a second time.

Give-away ends April 8th.

Happy Stitching (or Measuring or Cutting),
Nicey Linda

Friday, March 23, 2012

Giveaway & Review: Eleanor Burn's New Book "Tales of First Ladies" & Set-In Triangle Ruler

I'm so pleased to be able to review Eleanor Burn's new book and to offer this give-away.
It was exciting to receive the package - and what a big package it was!
Oh the supense as I sliced open the box.
WhooHoo!  Two of Eleanor's latest book "Tales of First Ladies" and two Set-In Triangle Rulers one for me and one for a give-away.  Can you see how big the Set-In Ruler is?   It's 15 inches!

First I want to talk about Eleanor's book.
I will tell you that I was asked to review the products - but not to give a positive review. I have really become a fan of Eleanor Burns after making two of her quilts.  She takes hard things and makes them simple and easy.  Who wouldn't like that?  So I figured I would like the book, and then after it arrived and I looked through it I was floored.  Eleanor has absolutely out done herself with this book.  I expect her to present easier ways of doing thing, clear instructions and plenty of pictures. I'm telling you, she far exceeded my expectations.

Eleanor has made her book "Tales of First Ladies" very versatile.  There are stories about the first ladies, which I found very entertaining and a block for each one. So the book is good for just sitting and reading and for making quilts.  The blocks come with instructions for 6 and 12 inches.  I wasn't sure if I would be up to making her center block as shown on the front cover, but not only does she have instructions for the an appliqued eagle medallion center, there are several other options, including pieced blocks. Once I looked at her instructions - I realized I could do the appliqued center.

She provides instructions for different types, sizes and styles of quilts and shows them in different color combos. (I love that! Sometimes seeing a quilt in a different color will just do it for me and I'll be inspired to  make it.)  There is enough information and diversity to design my own quilt(s). And to compliment that idea, Eleanor has a gallery of quilts section made by different people.  It's quite inspiring to see the different spins people take when making these blocks  and how each quilt is so unique.

Eleanor's instructions are always so easy and clear. Even if this was your first quilt you would be able to follow her step by step photos and instructions.
She has photo samples of fabrics suggestions to use and explains what to look for in fabric choices. Photos of tools (with their names) so that you know exactly what is needed.  Eleanor takes you step by step in making the quit and she even (I'm so impressed with this part) has a section on how to quilt the quit. She shows quilting designs and how to do it!  Can you believe that?  So nice to have a book that helps you finish your quilt.  I was really impressed with the book and highly recommend it.  I can't wait to start on a quilt using this book and Eleanor's lickity-split methods. Of course I'll post pictures when I do.

One other thing I would like to add, the book was printed on very high quality paper and the colors within are so rich, that just sitting and reading or looking at the pictures is really a joy.

Now I think that I have rambled on long enough and I'll do a review of the Set-In ruler next time. Please note:  the Set-In Ruler is not required to to make the quilts in this book.

The Give-away is for Eleanor's Book "Tales of First Ladies" and the Set-In Ruler.
Sorry, because of shipping constraints this one will have to be for the USA only.
First Ladies always have a special project that they work on throughout the Presidency term. (Michelle Obama is Childhood Obesity, Laura Bush's was Education, Barbara Bush's was Literacy, Nancy Regan's was Drug Abuse)  To enter please tell us; if you were the First Lady, what project/program you would choose?

I'll post about the Set-In Ruler and give you another chance to win, and at that time give the ending date for the Give-away.
Happy Stitching,
Nicey Linda

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Lovely, Lovely

Here it is on my bed, my Batik Jewels quilt.  
Here's a bit of the back - it's so hard to get a decent picture of quilting on back of the quilt.
As I'm making the bed or just passing through the room, I'll notice each color block's different design. I didn't know realize when I was quilting it that these different designs would bring me so much joy. 
It was worth it to take the time to do each one differently.  

As for the Corned Beef I wanted on St. Patrick's Day, well, daughter wasn't cooking it so I was forced to go buy one myself. The briskets were on sale so I bought two. One for now and one for later. was so good.
I trimmed all the fat from it and then cooked it with just a little 2x2 piece of fat and the spice packet that comes with it. 
I only cook my cabbage for about 10 to 15 minutes.  Everything was delicious!
Happy Stitching!
Nicey Linda 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

FNSI Results

Happy St Paddy's Day.  I wish I had corn beef and cabbage cooking in a pot.  But Hubby does really like that dish.  I Know!  I'll call my daughter and invite myself over like she did me with the Tamale Pie.  She usually makes that on Saint Patrick's Day.

On to FNSI Results...  WHOOHOOO!!! IT'S DONE!!!
The lighting was very poor last night.  And it's just as bad today because it's pouring, but here's the picture of my binding completely finished.
While I was sewing on the binding I had a little surprise. Sugar crawled under the quilt and popped her head out to sit with me while I sewed.
I'll take some pictures of the quilt all spread out when the lighting is better.

I also want to tell you about this product that was recommended to me.  It's called Thread Heaven. It's a thread conditioner and protectant.  
Okay admittedly this is a really poor product picture.  But the product works great! 
I ran my thread across this waxy stuff and it made it so much smoother as I sewed. There is glitter on it to make it pretty and fun. It helps the thread not to tangle.  I love this stuff and will continue to use it.  I was able to sew so much faster.  I highly recommend this.

Happy Stitching,
Nicey Linda

Friday, March 16, 2012

Tamale Pie

Oh so good - The picture really doesn't do it justice. 
This recipe comes from the Better Homes and Garden Cook Book - with some adjustments.

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 can (16 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 can (16 ounces) whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 can whole black olives, drained
  • 1 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 6 oz grated Cheddar cheese
  • .
  • Topping: 
  • 1 box of Jiffy Corn Muffin mix. Mix according to box directions.
I use the above as a guideline. Adding a little more or less as it suits me. It will turn out good.  I like the Jiffy Mix because it's better tasting corn bread than the recipe below.  I always double the recipe so that I have plenty for company and/or leftovers. Then I'll use a 13x9 pan.

Brown ground beef with onions and green pepper; drain well. Add tomato sauce, corn, olives, garlic, sugar, salt, chili powder. Pour into 8x8 pan. Add cheese; stir until cheese is melted. Spread Jiffy Corn Muffin mixture evenly over the top.  Bake at 375° for 45 
Serves 6. 

Here's the Topping if you don't use the Jiffy Mix
  • Topping:
  • 3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 tablespoon butter or margarine 
In a saucepan, combine cornmeal, salt and water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick. Stir in butter. 

If you try is recipe I hope you like it as much as we do.

Happy Cooking (and eating!),
Nicey Linda 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Get 'em Done and Clover Needle Threader

As you can you see I'm working on the binding.  Now I really didn't think I would finish this by today, although that was the goal. Especially when yesterday I mentioned to my daughter that I would be making Tamale Pie for dinner.  Well, she informed me that her husband loves my Tamale Pie.  So of course they were promptly invited to dinner.  It's just impossible to sew binding on when you are chasing and tickling three grandkids!
As I was sewing the binding on, I found that for me using a sharps needle is the way to go. It sharper and therefore easier to push in and out of the fabrics.  I only have these applique ones. Once I started using that sharper needle sewing the binding on went much faster. 

Last night I was having trouble threading my needle.  So FINALLY after having this for a year I decided to try my Clover Needle Threader.  What took me so long? This is a wonderful little gadget!  I'm keeping this baby near me from now on.  No more struggling with threading the needle for me!
I'm linking up to Sandra Kaye's Get 'em Done UFO Progress Linky Party.  She will be having this party every 15th of the month so come join us! 

Happy Stitching,
Nicey Linda

Monday, March 12, 2012

My bright and happy quilt

According to my plan - I intended to quilt four squares per day.  Then I started using good old Coats and Clark thread.  (Do you hear the heavenly music? I certainly do.)  My machine loves Coats and Clark thread. I was able to complete all the blue squares in one sitting - there were about 14 squares.  In fact it was so fun I then quilted all the purple squares. Not once did my thread break. (Now do you hear the heavenly music?)
That left just the green ones.  YAY!!
Only the green ones left.  
Sunday  I got up and realized I was an hour late for church. I forgot about Daylight Savings Time. Oh Dear! There was only one thing I could do. QUILT!!!
Those greens were so easy to finish up. I quilted my name and my husband's name on there too.  You know, just for fun. And then I sewed on the binding.  Now I'll flip it over and hand sew the binding to the back as I'm watching some program on TV.
I was able to finish up all those squares in two days and sew on the binding.  So much for my plans!  I'm so happy to have this quilt quilted and that it will soon be on my bed!  
Happy Stitching,
Nicey Linda

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Working on it....

One of the brown squares quilted. 
Did you all know that I like numbers.  When I said this to my daughter, she asked, "What? Like doing algebra?"  Well, yes I do, but that's not exactly what I was referring to.  

I like numbers because you can do things with them. For instance with this quilt I'm trying to finish up, I counted the squares of each color, then totaled them. These numbers then helped me to devise a plan.  I like making plans as much as I like numbers.

So with 15 brown, 13 blue, 14 green and 14 purple squares. I came up with 56 squares that I need quilted within 2 weeks.  Oh it's that nice - it comes out to 4 even.  

Although I like the type of four better

Oh happy Me!  I now have a plan.  14 days and each day I have to get at least 4 squares finished. That sounds doable doesn't it?  

Yesterday, I was off work with my husband. I started quilting the brown squares.  What a pain in the booties.  The metallic thread kept breaking.  Each square had the thread break about 4 times.  I changed needles, changed types of needles, I cleaned the machine (several times), I threaded and re-threaded even more times.  In the end I just kept going, until wa la 15 brown squares were finished!!  

Maybe, just maybe I'll have this quilt finished by the end of March. Please, just don't hold your breath on that!  LOL!!

Happy Stitching,
Nicey Linda  

Monday, March 5, 2012

Sad/Happy News

I ought to be upset, but I just can't seem to get there.

My sad news is that my phone died. It just would not respond to pressing/touching it. It is  totally locked up.  We went to the Verizon store and no help there.  And when we called, as we have insurance on it, they said, "Sorry, you don't."  (Yikes! They are right, we don't have insurance.)

We are not eligible for a new phone until - are you ready???    MAY OF 2013!!!  That is because I let my daughter get a smart phone instead of me getting a new phone.  

So...I can buy a new phone for $200.00 or use my husband's old phone.  

The worst part are the photos this phone takes.  Here's a gate that was built for a customer this weekend.   Way too light and actually blurry.  
Hurts your eyes doesn't it?
I thought I would try an inside picture. Here's the quilting I've been working on.
Oh dear the colors are all...too bright, too dark, and just all wrong!! It certainly doesn't make my work look nice.  Which could use all the help it can get!   LOL!!

I guess I'll just have to start using my real camera.  

So the happy part of this post is that I did work on my quilting!  I quilted about 8 coral squares.  Not a lot, but I'm working it! Now I'm going go grab a cup of coffee and see what you are up to.
Happy Stitching,
Nicey Linda