Monday, July 6, 2015

Modern Monday: Cross Quilt ~~ complete

That's right~~complete!  
I started this quilt just before we left for vacation when I cut out a couple of kits just in case I'd have some down time in the camper.  I had a chance to do a little sewing but not much.  I managed to sew blocks for two quilts: the modern cross quilt and the rose fabric quilt.

As soon as we returned home, I put the cross quilt blocks on the design wall and wrote about my progress here last week.  Although getting back to it later in the week was a bit of a trial, I finished it in time to share at today's guild meeting.  

I really like this bright, cheerful quilt.  Quilting it was great fun.  

I chose to use embroidery thread to match the colors of the quilt because it has a shimmery look that I really like.  

I also decided that each color would get its own quilting motif, meaning that the green crosses are all quilted in pebbles, the blue in scrolls, orange in rounded squares, and so on.  

Since there are seven colors, I was taxed to come up with enough circular motifs, but I didn't want to use any straight line quilting on the colors because I used straight line quilting patterns for the background.  I wanted lots of contrast between the two.

The back is pretty, also, because I matched the bobbin thread to the block and embroidery thread color.  In some areas, the stitching on the back has a lacy look to it.  Can you tell I'm a little proud of this one?

Now to get the label on and hang it in the studio.  It should brighten the place, don't you think?

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Sunday Quilt Inspiration: M O N S T E R S

Either we have a weird obsession with monsters or they aren't really scary at all.  I say this because the variety of monsters, monster crafts, and monster-themed quilts is outrageous. Just take a look!  

DIY:: Monsters :: microfibre cloths and ping pong balls :: super easy kids Halloween project craft

I assume that Disney/Pixar movies, such as Monsters, Inc. and Inside Out, (which we saw just recently with the grands) are to thank for the cute fuzzies that are so popular right now. 

Printables Halloween Freebies à telecharger Gratuitement sur #Halloween #Printables #Freebies

A monster coloring page! Perfect to talk about the Halloween season and the "monsters" your child may encounter. Monsters are make-believe, of course!
DIY Felt Monster Stuffed Animals - FREE Sewing Pattern and Tutorial

These two below are actually laundry bags.  
Hungry Monster Laundry Bags. Fabric by Spoonflower

And these are rocks...

Adoro bonecos assim, sem grandes conceitos de beleza... monstrinhos!  Love dolls like this, without big beauty concepts... litle monsters!


the zippy pouch

Here to There Art Print - Greg Abbott

Monster Clipart Digital Monsters  - Set of 12 (Set 2). $9.95, via Etsy.

And so the quilts...

"Don't Look Now" Monster Quilt -- Pattern available at

What a great idea! would be cute with dogs or cats peaking over too.......M is for Monster Quilt Kit with Backing Fabric

quilt patterns for children's quilts | here are 7 handmade children s gift ideas to stitch up for little ones ...

quilt patterns for children's quilts | Image - Pattern Front

Quilt Patterns | Two Sisters and a Quilt

Monster Quilt Boys Blanket - Scary Monsters - Don't Be Afraid Fabric - Blue Orange Green Red

IMG_5588 Monster quilt

Ann L. Peterson's award winning quilt  "Peek A Boo Monsters"

A Monster Quilt, adorable! @ 'Made with Love' >

another cute boy's quilt

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Trails of Tears Crossing

Another vacation story, bear with me, if you don't mind.

We camped at David Crockett State Park in Tennessee, which happens to have an interesting little trail just off the road.  Naturally we had to explore.  The trail, it turns out, is a segment of the original route of the Trail of Tears, on which over 15,000 Cherokees were forced to walk or travel by waterway from their homes on the Appalachian Mountains to present-day Oklahoma. Four- to eight-thousand died on the  journey.  The National Historic Trail, which retraces several routes to commemorate the event that occurred in 1838, is over 5,000 miles long.  

Although we know of the Trail of Tears (I've taught some Native American literature in English III), we were not expecting this surprise.  

I'd have liked to walk and experience more of the trail but there wasn't time.  I am also very afraid of poison ivy and insects.  Not that the Cherokee were allowed to think that way, of course.  How sad to think of a forced march of over 1,000 miles to a hostile place far removed from anywhere the Cherokee had never been.  

Mothers were forced to choose between carrying children or food and survival gear.  Imagine the deaths--children and elderly persons died from starvation, exposure, exhaustion, and disease.  

I believe that one way to teach tolerance is to teach students about the horrors from history.  Without focusing on the gore and causing fear, we can help students to understand how intolerance has lead to inconceivable events.  Allowing students to research events and write about their thoughts and findings gives them opportunities to brainstorm ways to prevent such events from reoccurring.

Having experienced and photographed the place gives me a closer connection to the time and place.  Students have often told me that my enthusiasm for the subjects I teach makes a difference.  How convenient that I am able to find enthusiasm in small state and national parks.

Friday, July 3, 2015

On Bumble Berry Pie and Aging Parents

This week has been difficult.  Richard's 96 year old aunt died last weekend, and only two days later a family friend also passed away. Of course, we attended the funerals and even picked up his dad since Papa can't drive since his brain injury. 

Richard's mom, who usually drives him around, is suffering from a horrible case of shingles.  She also has Parkinson's disease and can barely hold or handle anything.

Today I went by to check on her again only to discover that the shingles have gotten worse--more blisters and more pain.  I insisted on taking her back to the clinic and, hopefully, another course of medicine will do the trick.

On the way home we treated his parents to lunch and pie at Lea's Lunchroom in Lecompte.  It's quite famous for the ham and even more so for the pies.  Rich and I shared the "Bumble Berry" pie and a slice of Pecan Pie.  Bumble Berry combines strawberry, blueberry and blackberry for a real treat!

Eventually we made it home and I was able to get into the studio. Although I didn't finish the cross quilt on the long arm, I made a little headway.  

Here's wishing everyone a wonderful Independence Day!  

Thursday, July 2, 2015

wild flowers and another spring

 While we were traveling and having fun on our way to and from Niagara Falls, I discovered wild flowers in full bloom.  

Since wild flowers bloom in April and May in Louisiana, it was a nice surprise to see them again in June.  

Of course, I snapped a few pictures to prove to the in-laws that clover was blooming along with other very pretty plants.

We noticed these beautiful blue spruce trees throughout the Ohio-New York region.  In some places the trees are planted in thick lines, we assumed to create wind breaks for the winter.  I took photos of several trees because I was so enamored with them.  I've chosen one--a favorite, and I wish very much that they could survive in my yard.