R.E.A.D.ing at Library Island

Yesterday, Boomer and I joined eight other READing Paws teams at the main library in Marietta to help celebrate Library Island – the library system’s end of summer celebration for kids who participated in the summer reading program.  We had a great time meeting all of the kids and their parents.  I returned home with one pooped puppy!  A photographer from the local paper was there taking photos, so I ran to the store this morning to buy a Sunday paper.  Nice article with pictures and kudos given to every group who appeared yesterday EXCEPT the reading dogs.  Oh, well.  Plenty of parents took pictures.

 

 

Summer’s end

Here in the South, we start school much earlier than our northern counterparts.  Today marks the official last day of summer vacation for moi.  Tomorrow, I report for preplanning and a day filled with meetings and catching up with my co-workers, many of whom I haven’t seen since late May. As I’ve told my parapro, pre-planning is for teachers.  We can delay opening the library the first few days of school, but we have to help the teachers get ready for the big day on August 13th.  So, we’ll hopefully get the bulletin board up, display some first day of school books and put the decorations back out in the library in anticipation of Sneak-a-Peek on Thursday.  I’ll also be up to my ears in technology stuff the next few weeks as I assume webmaster responsibilities for one school and am helping the other school with their blogs.  I’m sure you’ll see this blog change over the next several weeks as I try out new tricks before I share them with my teachers.

Next Saturday, one of my quilt guilds is having an all-day retreat.  There’s also a big R.E.A.D.ing Paws read-in at the main Cobb County Library right off the square in Marietta.  Originally, I had RSVP’d in the negatory to both events thinking I would be at school on Saturday.  Scratch that since there’s no air on the weekends.  It’s too darn hot to work without a/c in an area with no windows to open and cross-ventilation.  I really think Boomer and I need to attend the R.E.A.D. event that morning.  It means I may not get to the retreat until after 2 p.m., but that’s okay.  I’ll check and see if I can still go.

So for now, it’s back to making out the grocery list and then down to the studio to finish up my Kona Challenge Quilt.

 

 

 

 

Summer Travels

Last week I flew to Boston to visit my niece.  We followed the Freedom Trail and ate Italian in the North End.  I soaked up the experience of being surrounded by so much academia (MIT and Harvard were within walking distance of my bed & breakfast).  I also visited the main Boston Public Library. I reveled in the magnificent architecture and experienced a sense of awe as I ascended the main staircase between the lions.  However, I knew in a flash that I much prefer the warmth and noisiness of my own school library.

Keepsake Quilting - Center Harbor, NH

One of my side trips was a day trip to the Lakes region of New Hampshire, which also happens to be the home of Keepsake Quilting – you know THE quilting catalog just about every quilter receives in their mailbox 2-3 times a year.  Here’s proof there really is a retail store to go along with the catalog.  The shop is a treat to visit with all of the quilts on display and vignettes set up around the store.  I engaged in a little retail therapy and was most happy to find the remaining batik fabrics to make the bird applique quilt for my mom.

I’m glad I listened to that little voice that told me to pack a small embroidery kit in my suitcase.  My return journey home took 18 hours instead of the anticipated 4-1/2 hours due to mechanical breakdowns, cancellations, rerouting, bad weather and a ground stop at the Atlanta airport.  The retro embroidery book I found atgather here & make something in Cambridge came in handy, as did the floss I purchased at a cute stitchery shop in downtown Boston.   I traced designs onto the muslin squares in my kit and stitched away.  I now have a collection of redwork squares waiting to be made into small projects.

Custom baby quilts and sewing lessons

The first picture is a photo of the completed 6″ Tumbler block quilt in a girly jungle theme made using my AccuQuilt GO!.  The finished size is about 38″x48″or 9 blocks across by 8 rows down.  I used one of the antique quilting stitches (#31) on my Pfaff 2046 and the stitch-in-the-ditch/edge joining foot to quilt down each seam line.  It made for an interesting design on the back.   I plan to  use this same stitch again on the Tweet!Tweet! quilt, however, I will increase the stitch length to 3.0.  AccuQuilt suggests you even up the sides before machine quilting.  If you’re machine quilting on a domestic machine, I suggest you wait until your quilting is complete before removing the excess tumbler block material.

Here’s my sewing friend learning how to guide fabric under the needle.  Mom requested my help in selecting a sewing machine to give to her daughter at Christmas.  We met at the local dealer and selected the Janome 2212.  Originally, mom and daughter were supposed to take owner’s lessons from the dealer before coming to me for sewing lessons.  Little one was so excited, we scheduled Sewing Machine 101 right after Christmas.  Her mom tells me she’s sewing everything that doesn’t sew her first.

Clogging Skirts

Over the summer, I made custom clogging skirts for two members of the Little General Cloggers based in Kennesaw, GA.  (One of the cloggers’ mother happens to be a co-worker of mine.)  This turned out to be more of a challenge than I ever imagined.  No pattern, no instructions, only a sample of a too-small skirt made five years previously to be used as a guide. Thanks to the web and several phone calls to a sewing mentor, I figured out the basic pattern drafting and construction sequence.  I did as much reverse sewing on the first skirt as I did stitching – but it got finished.  I also wrote out detailed instructions in case anyone else needed a skirt.

The Little General Cloggers recently appeared at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee.  My handiwork can be seen on the young lady to the far left in the second row  and on the young lady to the far right in the second row (wearing Mary Janes not cowboy boots).

Article courtesy of Brightside Newspapers

Samples of my work

This is a scrappy quilt made from 5″charm squares given out during the 2010 Atlanta Quilt Shop Hop, plus a few from my stash.  Quilt was donated on behalf of my quilt guild to the Paulding County Sheriff’s Department in support of the guild’s community service mission.

This quilt was my first ever entry into the juried East Cobb Quilt Guild Show held in September 2009.  It was machine quilted by Shannon Baker of Lucky Dog Stitches.  Didn’t place, but received nice feedback from the judges and am already hard at work at my entries for the 2011 ECQG show!

This is a 4×4 rail fence pattern baby quilt.  It is approximately 36″ square. These type of quilts are great for showcasing a theme or focus fabric along with two-four complementary colors.  Here we have a yellow dog fabric with white/black pawprints and a blue swirl pattern fabric.  The inner border is a stripe, which nicely frames the rail fence pattern.

Sometimes you never know who might be sitting next to you

Last night, I almost skipped the AMQG’s sew-in at a local fabric store.

I was running late due to work obligations, tired, and I didn’t have a project ready to go.  In a flash of inspiration, I scooped up the bulls-eye blocks from the Silver Comet Stitchers’ block swap, grabbed my FW and left.

I arrived almost an hour late, with a much needed Diet Coke in hand.  As I set up my machine, I listened to snatches of conversation around me.  The lady next to me mentioned she was making the sample for a book she’s currently writing.  Know how it feels when you recognize someone but can’t for the life of you remember how, where or why you might know this person?  As soon as she said her name – Jodie – I knew.  None other than Jodie Davis from QNNtv was sitting next to me.  She confirmed and I thoroughly enjoyed the conversation that followed.

I don’t think anyone else recognized her, but as the night wore on, they realized someone of note in the quilting world was in their midst.  Jodie never really let on who she was to anyone but one person besides me in our group.  She obviously appreciated being incognito for a change.

Hope she comes back to visit AMQG as her schedule allows.  Also hope the traveling Aurifil thread cone made it to New Jersey.

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