Nov 17

America the Beautiful-fields & trees

We made the deciduous tree blocks at our previous session and they went together quite easily. We can sew things up quickly when we already have the blocks all cut out in kits. Because this quilt is showing more of our individualism, our three block units have variations from each other. They are placed in three different spots in the quilt so we decided to have seasons and make a spring, summer, and fall tree unit. Terry found the tulip fabric in her stash and she and I used that for our spring background, but ShaRee wanted to be consistent with her cream backgrounds. Our summer units are different, but we all agreed on that cute fall fabric.







Since everything went so quickly, we decided to begin the Fields Block. We started laying them all out and realized that we had cut greens and a few golds like the pattern suggested, but we all felt the row needed some brown. We decided to bring browns the next week, cut up a few squares, sew up the block and work on our 1930’s quilt as usual. We alternate weeks on the two projects. But those easy squares and triangles ended up taking us two hours to finish! We are nothing if not flexible, so we cut out the next two 1930’s blocks for future sewing and planned our next move on this quilt. Here are our Fields from top to bottom: ShaRee, Sue, and Terry. This block runs along the bottom of the quilt and is the width of the quilt.

All Fields block

Nov 09

2016 Reading Challenges from My Reader’s Block

I usually do all my reading challenge sign-ups in one big post at the end of December, but since these are now open and I know I will be signing up for them again, I figured I might as go ahead and do it. As Forrest Gump would say, “One less thing!” These three challenges are hosted by Bev at My Reader’s Block.

2016 Read It Again, Sam

I did this challenge last year for the first time and signed up for 8 books. I called the 2015 challenge last month when I hit 30 re-reads which is way past the top level. Most of my re-reads come from audio books I check out from the library and listen to as I do other things around the house. You can get through an audio book quite fast at that rate. So I will sign up for Living in the Past 16+ books.
*Challenge runs from Jan 1 to Dec 31, 2016.
Déjà vu: Reread 4 books
Feeling Nostalgic: Reread 8 books
A Trip Down Memory Lane: Reread 12 books
Living in the Past: Reread 16+ books

2016 Color Coded Challenge

This will be my fourth year for this challenge and although I did have to resort to the new option in 2015 of a color on the cover for brown, the rest were titles. I try to read my own books for this as much as possible without resorting to library books, but sometimes I do. I’m going to try to stick to my own books next year so I may have to do another cover.

Here are the rules:

*Read nine books in the following categories.

1. A book with “Blue” or any shade of Blue (Turquoise, Aquamarine, Navy, etc) in the title/on the cover.

2. A book with “Red” or any shade of Red (Scarlet, Crimson, Burgandy, etc) in the title/on the cover.

3. A book with “Yellow” or any shade of Yellow (Gold, Lemon, Maize, etc.)in the title/on the cover.

4. A book with “Green” or any shade of Green (Emerald, Lime, Jade, etc) in the title/on the cover.

5. A book with “Brown” or any shade of Brown (Tan, Chocolate, Beige, etc) in the title/on the cover.

6. A book with “Black” or any shade of Black (Jet, Ebony, Charcoal, etc) in the title/on the cover.

7. A book with “White” or any shade of White (Ivory, Eggshell, Cream, etc)in the title/on the cover.

8. A book with any other color in the title/on the cover (Purple, Orange, Silver, Pink, Magneta, etc.).

9. A book with a word that implies color (Rainbow, Polka-dot, Plaid, Paisley, Stripe, etc.).

* Any book read from January 1 through December 31, 2016 will count.

2016 Mount TBR Reading Challenge

I’ve done this challenge every year so this will be year #4. I signed up for Mt. Ararat and accomplished that recently and am hoping to get a few more in before the end of the year to make Mt. Kilimanjaro, but will be conservative and sign up for Mt. Ararat again in 2016. Climb on!


Challenge Levels:
Pike’s Peak: Read 12 books from your TBR pile/s
Mount Blanc: Read 24 books from your TBR pile/s
Mt. Vancouver: Read 36 books from your TBR pile/s
Mt. Ararat: Read 48 books from your TBR piles/s
Mt. Kilimanjaro: Read 60 books from your TBR pile/s
El Toro: Read 75 books from your TBR pile/s
Mt. Everest: Read 100 books from your TBR pile/s
Mount Olympus (Mars): Read 150+ books from your TBR pile/s

*Challenge runs from January 1 to December 31, 2016.

Nov 05

America the Beautiful-flag & sun

Since we had cut up all those lovely little kits, our first sewing day we got right to the sewing and managed to get two blocks finished. The first block is the Flag block and you can already see our styles emerge. Terry found some fabric in her stash with words on it and some of us used that. This block goes in the upper left corner. Then we tackled the Sun block which goes in the upper right corner. Fascinating fact: ShaRee used 3 different fabrics, I used 4, and Terry used 2 fabrics. We sometimes make completely independent choices, as here, but some of our upcoming blocks will be more similar. It will be interesting to see how it all turns out in the end! Our goal is to have these finished for Alpine Days in August 2016.

blocks by ShaReeShaRee Flag BlockShaRee Sun Block

blocks by SueSue Flag BlockSue Sun Block

blocks by Terry

Terry Flag BlockTerry Sun Block

Nov 04

America the Beautiful-the beginning

In September our quilt group began a new project that will run concurrently with the 1930’s quilt we began in January. We are alternating weeks on the projects. The new quilt is called “America the Beautiful” and is published by McCall’s Quilting. It was published a section at a time in the magazine during 2011 and the full pattern can be found on the website and in the Autumn 2012 magazine. This issue featured the original colorway shown below, but also photos of reader quilts that had been sewn the previous year during the sew-along.  Read the rest of this entry »

Oct 14

Ode to the 1930’s-blocks #14 & #15

Block #14 is another 9×9″ block called Kansas Star that is all pieced. We deviated radically from the pattern to bring in more black and orange. I love the contrasts in this block and the way the on point white square in the middle really stands out. We had some angst about the direction of the black stripes in the squares. ShaRee & Terry opted to make them all face the same direction, but I am characteristically rebellious and opted to have them all face the center. Does it matter? No, but fun to notice our minor differences. Read the rest of this entry »

Oct 10

Read It Again, Sam 2015 wrap-up

Play it SamRead It Again, Sam 2015

I usually reread some books during the year just for fun and often the rereading comes as listening to the audio of a book I’ve already read and enjoyed. So I decided to just go ahead and not feel guilty about my rereads by joining the challenge this year hosted by Bev at My Reader’s Block. I’m signed up for “Feeling Nostalgic: 8 books“, which I completed in the first quarter of the year. I decided to just keep going, but now that I’ve re-read 30 books, I’ve decided to call this challenge for the year. Because apparently I’m really “Living in the Past”.


Déjà vu: Reread 4 books
Feeling Nostalgic: Reread 8 books
A Trip Down Memory Lane: Reread 12 books
Living in the Past: Reread 16+ books

My list of books:

1. The Saddlemaker’s Wife, Earlene Fowler
2. The Dead in their Vaulted Arches, (Flavia de Luce #6) Alan Bradley
3. The Road to Cardinal Valley, Earlene Fowler
4. Sinner, Maggie Stiefvater
5. Cinder (Lunar Chronicles, #1), Marissa Meyer
6. At Home in Mitford, Jan Karon
7. Insurgent (Divergent #2), Veronica Roth
8. Allegiant (Divergent #3), Veronica Roth
Challenge complete
9. A Light in the Window (Mitford #2), Jan Karon
10. These High, Green Hills (Mitford #3), Jan Karon
11. Out to Canaan (Mitford #4), Jan Karon
12. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, J.K. Rowling
13. A New Song (Mitford #5), Jan Karon
14. A Common Life: The Wedding Story (Mitford #6), Jan Karon
15. In This Mountain (Mitford #7), Jan Karon
16. The House at Riverton, Kate Morton
17. On the Banks of Plum Creek, Laura Ingalls Wilder
18. By the Shores of Silver Lake, Laura Ingalls Wilder
19. Little Town on the Prairie, Laura Ingalls Wilder
20. These Happy Golden Years, Laura Ingalls Wilder
21. Light from Heaven (Mitford #8), Jan Karon
22. Scarlet (Lunar Chronicles #2), Marissa Meyer
23. Home to Holly Springs (Father Tim #1), Jan Karon
24. In the Company of Others (Father Tim #2), Jan Karon
25. To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
26. Harry Potter & the Prisoner of Azkaban (#3), J.K. Rowling
27. Cress (Lunar Chronicles #3), Marissa Meyer
28. Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire (#4), J.K. Rowling
29. A Test of Wills (Ian Rutledge #1), Charles Todd
30. Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix (#5), J.K. Rowling

Oct 05

Sue’s new studio


For several years, my creative space has been in a basement room and I have never liked being in the basement. I need light and space! Even though our boys are grown men and haven’t really lived in our home for more than a couple months at a time since 2007 & 2009 respectively, we have kept their bedrooms intact so they had a place to return that was their own. But over the last couple years, I have been eyeing those upstairs bedrooms with increasing envy and due to several life changes for all of us, Scott finally agreed to let me have one as my new studio. It was Mark’s bedroom for several years, then was the home of his recording studio, Mountain Beach House Studio. It underwent a complete transformation to become a recording studio, and when he found a great space a few blocks from his apartment in his city of residence, he moved all the equipment out and it became a guest bedroom. But I set up a folding table and ironing board and it became my  quilt space for several months with my paper crafts still in the basement along with all my fabric and supplies. But earlier this year the decision was made to make it my studio and the transformation began! Read the rest of this entry »

Sep 28

Color Coded 2015 wrap-up

Color Coded 2015

2015 The Color Coded Reading Challenge

This is my third year for this fun-filled and colorful challenge hosted by Bev at My Reader’s Block. Thankfully, she’s altered the rules a little this year by allowing the cover to count if it is mostly the color. I had a tough time finding Brown books in my TBR pile last year, and I did again this year as well, so I went with a brown cover. Another reading challenge finished up for the year!

*Read nine books in the following categories with the color in the title or on the cover

1. A book with “Blue” or any shade of Blue: Touch Blue, Cynthia Lord
2. A book with “Red” or any shade of Red:  The Road to Cardinal Valley, Earlene Fowler
3. A book with “Yellow” or any shade of Yellow: These Happy Golden Years, Laura Ingalls Wilder
4. A book with “Green” or any shade of Green: These High, Green Hills (Mitford #3), Jan Karon
5. A book with “Brown” or any shade of Brown: Four Souls, Louise Erdrich
6. A book with “Black” or any shade of Black: Black Dove, White Raven, Elizabeth Wein
7. A book with “White” or any shade of White: Snow White Red-Handed, Maia Chance
8. A book with any other color: The Orchid House, Lucinda Riley
9. A book with a word that implies color: The River of Doubt: Theodore Roosevelt’s Darkest Journey, Candice Millard

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