Thursday, May 19, 2016

Movin' Along

This week I completed steps on a couple projects.

This hand appliqué design was given to us at last Saturday's Central Florida MQG meeting. Beth, our program presenter, designed it à la Carolyn Friedlander. Beth demonstrated several appliqué techniques, but I opted to appliqué mine using my favorite back-basting method. Are you impressed that I fussy-cut Australia in the circle? This is the first time I position the country right side up! You see, I decoupaged the same fabric on my desk (see it to the left of the knob?) and Susan (from Australia) pointed out that I'd positioned it upside down! Then, she allowed that Australia is, after all, "down under." :-)

My "Building Fun" quilt top is complete, so far. The quilt top is 41" X 53" at this point, and the pattern calls for another 3-inch border. I'm still unsure whether I want to add it. I like this quilt, though I'd hoped it would look less child-like. I'll probably give it to a child.

Speaking of child... our six year-old grandson, Tay, who's a kindergartner, participated in a special event at an Overland Park, Kansas high school. The 2016 graduating seniors held a graduation event last Friday morning, and in attendance as special guests were selected kindergarteners from the elementary schools that feed into the high school. Tay was chosen to represent his elementary school because his big sis, Celina, is a junior this year, and next year little brother Aesa will represent the same elementary school for Celina's senior class.

Anyway, they put the kindergarteners on stage, in front of the seniors, and asked each one of them a question about being in kindergarten. Tay was asked what advice he would give to seniors, and his response was, "Stay out of trouble." Good job, Tay!

I can't believe he's going to be among the class of 2028! That sounds like the distant future, doesn't it?

And speaking of graduations, Aesa celebrated his pre-school graduation. Adorable.

I haven't mentioned Hogan lately, but he's doing well!

He has completely surprised us - and our neighbors who know him - by making a full recovery from his December bout with a serious subcutaneous skin infection and bronchitis, compounded by a large lump on his chest that was identified after surgery as soft tissue sarcoma. The vet said she couldn't remove all the sarcoma because it was so invasive, so we expected Hogan's slow decline. Such is not the case! He's been almost acting like a pup again, running around with his dog pals, briskly walking, and insisting on us playing with toys with him each evening. You wouldn't guess he's 12-1/2 years old.

This pic simply shows the odd behavior he's displayed for years... tucking his head under something for security. He does this often, sometimes against a table leg, or my knee, or alongside my hip when I'm sitting on the floor with him. He's awfully precious to us.

Most of the week I've been quilting. Dr. Q.'s quilt is coming along nicely and I expect to finish by Friday. Five spirals of various sizes and overlaps were quilted first, and I'm now custom quilting to fill in the rest of the open areas.

My Pfaff Grand Quilter is mostly working well for quilting. I've had ten unexpected thread breaks on this quilt - does that seem like a lot? - but the skipped stitches are fewer. I talked with a Tampa Bernina/Pfaff dealer for about 25 minutes and he gave me three suggestions for preventing skipped stitches. The two I've tried are: 1) set the machine speed on slow, and then quilt with the pedal to the metal. That seems to be a steadier quilting speed than setting the machine on high speed and trying to keep the foot control speed in the middle range; and 2) use a size 90 jeans needle. When I put in the jeans needle, I immediately had more skipped stitches, so I lowered the needle about 2mm, and screwed it in tight. Better now. His third suggestion is to quilt with cotton batting. That will be in the next quilt.

Today, on my way home in the golf cart from doing Line Dancing for Exercise, I saw this turtle just walking down the sidewalk. I parked the golf cart so I could take a picture. It's a very big Florida softshell turtle! Ugly too, isn't it?
I had just walked back to my golf cart when she decided she needed to cross the street. Yikes. I pulled into the golf cart lane to block traffic, and waved my arm to get carts and cars to slow down. Fortunately, another walker with whom I'd chatted about the turtle, called Community Watch. The Community Watch vehicle arrived almost right away with red lights flashing! Hopefully the turtle was moved to a nearby pond. I've been told this time of year is mating/nesting season.

I'm definitely not in Iowa anymore! Linda


  1. I love this post, it's so all over the map!! And I'm glad you're not in Iowa anymore. Good news that you've got some direction on the machine.

  2. Glad Hogan is doing well. I'm always afraid to ask.

  3. That is one ugly turtle! Thankfully Hogan's cuteness cancels out his appearance! Glad to see Australia is back upright! Tay is a wise young fellow, isn't he? Can't go wrong with that advice!

  4. Linda I don't remember seeing your decoupaged drawers before but I really like that idea. I need to do something like that on my white sewing table....I'm having trouble "decorating" that room to my liking. Precious grandchildren! I'm trying to talk by 28 year old grandson to give me my first great grandchild - his wife is willing but he's partial to waiting a while longer. :) blessings, marlene

  5. Lovely chatty post Linda. I was going to say newsletter cause that immediately what came into my head. All your projects are coming along nicely. Don't you just love what the little ones say. Your kindergartners look so grown up. 😊

  6. I love your Building Fun quilt.

  7. Busy busy as always. Now you can add turtle rescue to your resume too Linda.

  8. Everything's looking good, Linda! Glad Hogan is doing so well. Your grandies are growing up so fast! They are just too cute!



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