Sunday, October 13, 2013

New Block of the Week

Just what I needed was another Block of the Week or Block of the month, but I couldn't resist.  I have the Underground Railroad quilt ready to quilt - this is more or less a companion piece called Loyal Union Sampler.  I am really excited about it and I am determined to do this one in the 6" blocks.  I've completed two blocks.

This is the first one I completed last week - it is called Abel's Favorite.  I have one to make up as I started at the end of the second week - but I will get it together.

This was this weeks block and is called Winged Square.  I'm using material from an 1800's quilt that I just completed and some Thimbleberries fabric that looks like 1800's fabric.  Hopefully I won't have to buy too much more fabric.  

We have had 4 or 5 really beautiful days in a row.  Sunny, relatively warm considering it is October and beautiful.  I love this time of year.  I'm hoping the good weather lasts a bit longer as we want to take a ride to look for fall foliage and I don't want to do that in to rain or if it is cloudy.  Tomorrow we are having a new water heater installed so that is out and Tuesday they are talking about rain and I have quilt club that morning - I'm leaning toward Thursday - hopefully it will be Sunny.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Woman of Proverbs 31 Block

It is a beautiful day - as was yesterday - Sunday we really won't discuss as it was cloudy, rainy and COLD!! But I am learning to be grateful for each day that dawns, whether Sunny or Rainy to rejoice in it and to praise God for it!
Woman of Proverbs 31
I remember, as a young wife and mother, struggling to be the perfect Proverbs 31 woman.  I wanted to do all that she did, I wanted to be what she was, I wanted to make everyone proud of me and I failed miserably.  Now, so many years later I'm beginning to realize that her actions aren't what we are to emulate - the spinning and the weaving and the planting and harvesting.  It is her inner self.  It is her wisdom and common sense that I am to follow.  Her planning ahead and always being prepared that I am to emulate.  I must always look to the future and not agonize over the past.  I must care for those placed in my charge and see lovingly to their needs.

Widow of Zarapath

These are two more of my completed blocks - The Widow of Zarapath and Rizpah.  I never read Rizpah's story before and it truly saddened me - I'm still not sure I learned anything from her story - maybe later I will try reading it again to glean something from it.

We are still trying to get our basement put back together after all the flooding this spring.  I should have taken pictures before we started, but I really don't want to remember what it was like.  I did take some pictures a couple of weeks ago as we were ripping up tile on the floor - that was a job in and of itself.  Note to self - don't use tile adhesive if there is even a slim possibility that you are going to want to take this tile up again!!

This is going to be my quilting studio and miniature (doll house) work room.  It has a long way to go, but I'm really excited about it.  I'll post more pictures as I can.

September's reading list:

Fiber & Brimstone by Laura Childs
Eye of the Beholder by Jayne Ann Krentz
Knit, Purl, Die by Anna Canadeo
An Order for Death by Susanna Gregory
High Five by Janet Evanovich
Crystal Flame by Jayne Ann Krentz

All of this months list are by favorite authors.  Janet Evanovich I've been listing to on CD as I drive in the car or work on my quilts.  I truly think I like Susanna Gregory the best this month.  Her setting in 1300's Cambridge has all the Medieval flavor you could want and is historically accurate to the time.  That is important to me as I am a historian.  

Anyway - That's about it for today - may God's Blessing fall abundantly on each of you.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Mary's Block

I finally completed Mary’s block for my Women of the Bible Quilt. It took me a while to figure out a way to construct it that worked for me. I ended up with a mixture of Machine Paper Piecing and hand piecing, but I’m very pleased with the result.
Bethlehem Star - Mary Mother of Jesus 
As I think about Mary and her service as the Mother of Jesus I thought of my own Mother. Today would have been her 97th birthday. She wasn’t perfect, but which of us is? But she was there for me when I needed her, and I tried to be there when she needed me. She was often my traveling companion. We took several trips to Pennsylvania to visit family, one trip to North Carolina, a trip to Yellowstone and the oddessy of all trips when she was 91 to visit her cousins, sister-in-law and niece scattered from Holland, Michigan to Winter Park, Florida. We also spend 3 wonderful days in St Augustine, Florida. I drove a total of 7500 miles on that trip, ended up with a case of shingles by the time I got home, and truly had a wonderful time. It was also the last time I saw my mother. She died less than 2 years later and due to health reasons I was unable to go back to visit before then.

 I’ve also completed two other blocks for this sampler quilt.

Heart's Desire - Shluammite Woman
From Song of Solomon
Grandmother's Own - Athaliah & Jesosheba

 The basement project is coming along well. I did the last of the painting for the shelves today and maybe we will get the wallboard up so hubby can set his worktable up and clear his things off my sewing table. We have a couple of tables to construct of me - a moveable work table and a large cutting table. There is still a lot of work, and I have no idea what we are going to do for the floors. Anyone has any great ideas - please let me know!!! LOL

August’s book list is completed:

Steak & Eggs by Laura Childs
Pirate King by Laurie R. King
Black Wind by Clive Cussler
Death Climbs a Tree by Sara Hoskinson Frommer
Burn by Nevada Barr

All the authors are old favorites - I think the two I enjoyed most this time were Pirate King by Laurie R King - what a fun adventure for Mary and Holmes - not what I normally expect from a Mary Russell book but good never the less. I also liked? Enjoyed? Shivered with fear? Anyway - Burn by Nevada Barr. Anna Pigeon is on leave from the NPS in New Orleans when everything that can go wrong in Cajun Country does go wrong. Very Very good book.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

End of Summer.

I have no idea where this summer has gone.  It seems like just yesterday we were crying in our flooded basement - that was back in April.  Now it is the last day of August.  The basement is now dry - it took them until July to get to us to do the work that needed to be done.  We now have channels around the inner basement walls - a sump pump with a marine battery backup, and a dehumidifier and air purifier to hold down the mold and mildew in the air.  We have started rebuilding my quilt studio and Dave's work room, but it is a long process.  The walls have to be put back in.  Everything has to be repainted we have to make sure ALL the black mold is out and my back keeps going out.  What a pain!!

I did get some reading done in July -

For the Love of Mike by Rhys Bowen
Sweet Starfire by Jane Ann Krantz
Hell’s Corner by David Baldacci
The Tale of Castle Cottage by Susan Wittig Albert
Home For a Spell by Madeline Alt
Finger Lickin Dead by Riley Adams

All of the authors are old favorites - I sort of needed the security of old favorites when everything is in such an upheaval.  Have any of you watched King and Maxwell - The TV show based on David Baldacci's characters from several of his books?  I love the show and was really disappointed that they only made 10 episodes.  I really hope they pick it up again and made a lot more.

I haven't gotten a lot of my blocks made for my Women of the Bible Quilt this summer.  I just can't seem to keep up with anything right now - of course the sewing is strewn from one end of the house to the other so it is really hard to find what I need.  Anyway, I did get a few new one's done.  Hopefully by the end of the week I'll have some more done - this redo of the basement has slowed things down a lot.!

Women of Endor
Abigail - Wife of David
Queen of Sheba
Esther Queen of Persia
Elizabeth Mother of John the Baptist

Woman of Abel
Tamar Daughter of David

Monday, April 22, 2013

More on the flood of 2013

Yesterday hubby and I took a drive out to see what the flood looked like - it was supposed to be cresting - whether it did or not I don't know yet, but it was certainly high enough.  There were places where I had never seen flood water before and roads that I don't ever remember being closed.

Antique mall & Flee Market in Coal Valley

Intersection of 150 and 6 in Moline
Adding more barriers to intersection of 150 & 6
Across from the barricades on Route 6.  
Paddling Home

Road beside Ben Franklin that normally leads to Harold's Landing
Standing in the parking Lot of Ben Franklin looking across Harold's Landing to the Rock River
The last set of pictures were taken standing by the pillars in the foreground.
Another boat for residents along the Rock River who did not move out to higher ground.

Park bench in the river.

view down Ben Butterworth Parkway from the Celebration Belle Parking Lot

No Picnics today

Another shot looking down River Drive From the Parking Lot.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Looking for an Ark

I've decided I need to start gathering up two of everything and then start building that ark. In the last 3 weeks or so we've had something in the neighborhood of 8 - 10 inches of rain, 6 of it coming in 48 hours last week. Our basement is flooded and we have been unable to get anyone out here to do anything about it. The sumps are working overtime and the ball valve gave out yesterday - what a MESS!! All is sort of working again, but we still are waiting for someone to come and give us an estimate on the basement. The mold continues to grow and I am extremely sensitive to it, so I don't sleep particularly well, and I don't feel up to par.

 Told my Granddaughter last night that I was ready to run away and asked if she would like to come with me. I've had to move my quilting studio up to the dining room table so of course I'm not getting nearly as much done. I can't find things, and I just don't have as much room. My fabric and supplies are in plastic crates so they are all fine - but not as accessible as I would like.

The other day I went out and was amazed at the flooding - and the Rock River isn't due to flood until Sunday and I don't know when the Mississippi is due to Crest.

Old Collapsed Barn on the Back Road
The Bridge on Coal Creek at Highway 150 and Indian Bluff Road
The Parking Lot at the Corn Crib Market
The road beside Ben Franklin ahead is the Park for Harrold's Landing and beyond that the Rock River
This is at the edge of the Airport on Highway 150.  ShyShy calls this the little Rock River - there is a small drainage ditch near where the telephone pole is, it is not small anymore
The creek in front of my house is actually a very small creek and is in the background of this shot - the rest is flood into someone's yard.

The sun is actually shining today, but it is very cold out - but believe me, I will take the sunshine no matter what the temperature!!

March Book List:
Flood Tide by Clive Cussler 
Fruit of the Poisoned Tree by Joyce and Jim Lavene
Ghost in Trouble by Carolyn Hart 
The Sixth Man by David Baldacci 
Whose Death is it Anyway? By Elizabeth Daniels Squire
The Chase by Clive Cussler
Threadbare by Monica Ferris
While my Pretty One Knits by Anne Canadeo

I'm still on my Clive Cussler Marathon - and a new Hero in Isaac Bell.  Set in the turn of the 1900's it is a really good and interesting read - and of course Clive Cussler made a Cameo appearance!  Anne Canadeo is a new author to my list - I enjoyed the book and plan on reading the next.  The format is very similar to Maggie Shefton's knitting series so I will have to watch it.  Carolyn Hart's Ghost series is a lot of fun and I love Elizabeth Daniels Squire Peaches Dann who can't seem to stay out of trouble.  Monica Ferris always come forth with a winner and I've enjoyed the second outting with Joyce and Jim Lavene's series on Botanist Peggy Lee.  David Baldacci is always a winner in my accounting - always fast paced and he keeps you going from beginning to end.  There is a new TV series coming out in June based on his characters, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell - looking forward to watching it.

Hopefully tomorrow or Monday I will have some quilt blocks to post.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter

With winter hanging on for so long I nearly forgot it was Easter!!  But Easter did come and it is a little nicer today - The Maple tree out front is actually trying to bud out so maybe there is hope!!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Photo Award!!

I won an award at Photobug for a Photograph I posted a couple of months ago - I was really surprised


I really need a pic me up today - and an incentive to go out and do some more photowork.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Car's Fixed!!

I'm really excited today - they got my car fixed in record time!!!  I get to go to Bible Study tomorrow and to my Luncheon - That is sooooo wonderful.  I'm so tired of being stuck in the house all day - I need some distraction.

We went down to pick up the car and we had to go to the grocery store.  While we were out I took some pictures of the flooding down on the Rock River.  It has come up a lot in the last couple of days.  It seems unbelievable that 6 months ago we were worried about a drought.

Rock River at Harold's Landing

Rock River Bridge from Harold's Landing

ShyShy's Little Rock - actually the drainage ditch from the Airport
All of this from 4 days of rain and some snow melt.  What's going to happen with the Mississippi comes up in a couple of weeks?

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

First Robin

I am so excited!!!!  No my car is still not repaired - either one - one is now in the shop - the other awaits warmer weather.  No my basement is still damp and there is no way I can move my sewing back down there - the ditches are flooded and now the river is coming up!!  BUT - I saw my first ROBIN today!!  That always means that spring is here and things will get better.  I love Robins!!

First Robin of Spring - March 12, 2013

I saw my first robin
Of springtime today
Out on the lawn
Looking dazed and dismayed
Shivering with cold
On this late winter day
Wondering dismally
If he'd lost his way
Taken a wrong turn
In his long Northern flight
Instead of a left
Mayhap he'd turned to the right
And come to this cold and
Forbidding dark place
Without any warmth of
The sun on its face
The winter's been long
And dreadfully cold
So dear little robin
If I may be so bold
You're most welcome here
As the first sign of spring
With grand celebration
Let all the bells ring
© 2005 KayDee Ward
All Rights Reserved

Maybe now I can get out and do some photowork and enjoy some lovely places.  Of course we have to wait for the rest of the snow to melt and the ground to become less of a bog - but it's coming!!

Yesterday I finished a doll quilt for Quilt Guild.  The quilts are collected and given to needy children in the area at Christmas time.  I decided to practice my machine quilting on it rather than just tie it.
Doll quilt - about 24" Square

Well, I'm back to the sewing machine - and maybe a cup of tea!!  Happy Spring and have a lovely day.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Michael's Quilt Square

I know I'm a little behind. It has been a crazy week. Both of my cars are on the fritz. One has an oil leak and the other has something wrong with the fuel injection - neither can be fixed in this horrid weather - one day it's snowing and the next day it's raining - today it's raining and we are under a fog advisory. I don't drive hubby's car - I'm not going to be the one to put the first scratch or dent on it - so I've been staying home and the weather has been running havoc with my bad joints. Not to mention the CABIN FEVER!! I'm used to getting out for a couple of hours every day and doing my own thing. Now I can't get to quilt club, or the quilt shop to get the thread I need to finish the quilting on a table topper. GRRRRRRRRRRRR!!

 Anyway - I'm looking for the bright side to all of this and the lessons God wants me to learn. I'm a slow learner - but I know God is patient with me - I'll get it soon - I really will. I just finished pulling most of my current projects from the sewing room along with my machine and equipment as the floor is flooded from all the rain and melting snow. It's a real bummer - but I'll have to work upstairs for a while until the rain stops and we can get the floor dried out down there. It hasn't taken water like this in a lot of years.

Anyway - I did finish the Women of the Bible block for Michael - Wife of David - and her sister Micah.

Michael's Block - Open Window

Michah's Block - Sister's Choice

Hope you have a great day and that God will bless you in your endeavors.

Friday, March 1, 2013

February's Book List

Believe it or not but it is still snowing today.  It's not snowing a lot and there shouldn't be any accumulation - but come on - we had little snow all winter and then the end of February it snows for 4 day straight!!  To say the least I'm tired of snow.  Thankfully the wind isn't blowing hard and it has been warm enough that the roads are all clear.  Hopefully tomorrow it will stop snowing and we might see a little sunshine.  Of course it is March 1st - so I'm hoping this counts as March coming in like a lion - so it will go out like a lamb.

I didn't think I had read very many books in February - it being a short month and I really was busy with my quilting projects, but the list is longer than I expected.

The Silver Master by Jayne Castle
Ghost Hunter by Jayne Castle
Agony in the Leaves by Laura Childs
All Shall Be Well by Deborah Crombie
The Lost Night by Jayne Castle
Bones of a Feather by Carolyn Haines

I know I sort of went on a Jayne Castle Marathon this month - I do like her Harmony books and the Rainshadow books - which are also set on Harmony.  I just happened to have a stack of them in the basket of unread books.  Deborah Crombie is the only semi-new writer to my list - I've read one other book in this series.  I really like them - they are set in England and the main characters are a Detective Inspector and his Sargent from Scotland Yard. Her books are about police procedure - but they are also about the people and I like that.

I've read nearly everything that Laura Childs has written and the latest in the Tea Room Mysteries does not disappoint.  And then we have Carolyn Haines and her Bones Books.  I have to say I love Jitty and she has a good part in this story.  

I've already started on my pile of books for March - but I'll let you know what they are when the month is over.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Last Day of February-tea & snow

I really don't know where this month has gone - it has just flitted away somewhere - And I still haven't seen my first robin!!  I thought maybe since we had such a mild winter that the robins would return early - So I must just keep watching.

We have been having a Winter storm for the last 3 days.  It started on Tuesday Morning and snowed all of Tuesday and Wednesday and is still spitting snow today.  Now it didn't snow steadily all that time and some of it came down mixed with freezing drizzle so we only got maybe 4-6 inches - which is way more than I care to deal with.  So instead of dealing with the snow I buried myself in my quilt studio and played.

Bushes in the backyard yesterday afternoon

I love tea - herb teas, flavored teas, green tea, white tea, oolong tea You name it.  I finally have a granddaughter who also likes tea - so now we can have tea parties.  So I made a Tea Time Mug Rug

Tea Time Mug Rug

I will make another one for her and we can brew a pot of tea and chat about whatever is on her mind.  The Crocheted Rose is from a pattern called Lace and Roses Scarf I made the scarf and the roses to go on it, but I loved the roses so much and they were so easy that I decided to make some more and do a bouquet of them.  I have two done so for.

Anyway - hopefully I will be able to get out this afternoon the driveway is clear and hubby is really good behind the wheel of the new mustang he bought!!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Hannah's Block

Today we are waiting to see if the new Winter Storm is actually going to hit us, or if, like all the storms so far this year it will skate by us just brushing us with a touch of snow or a bit of ice.  The worst one was last Monday when we lost the power because of icing and wind.  As I sit and wait and wonder, I think of Hannah.  She waited and wondered what God had in mind for her.  Personally I think her story is one of the saddest in the Bible.  A woman who wanted children, would make a wonderful Mother, was loving and caring and generous, but was denied for many years.  To add insult to injury her husband had another wife - was Peninnah older or younger than Hannah - and she had children and she lorded that over Hannah.  But the husband loved Hannah more.  What a set up for terrible trouble.  You have to admire Hannah though.  She too it all to God and laid it at His feet - and left it here.  Don't I wish I could do that when troubles hit home.

Hannah - Altar Steps

Peninnah - Contrary Wife

It is time to go work on the quilting for my current project which I really need to get finished - as there are 4 more behind it that need quilted - at least 3 of them by hand.  I love doing it, but it does take a lot of time.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Block for Samson's Mother

Have you ever had bright hopes for the future - bright hopes for your son or your daughter - I'm sure Samson's Mother had bright hopes for Samson.  After many barren years she finally had a son - and she did what many of us do - we spoil them.  We make excuses for them.  We coddle them.  We clean up their messes.  But if all goes well, in the end - they learn their lessons and they do the right thing - the job God planned for them.

Samson's Mother - Bright Hopes

This block is called Bright Hopes.  I almost didn't make it because it had so many half seams and 45 degree angles that I couldn't see how it could be easily pieced.  Then I had an inspiration and used English Paper Piecing - see the previous Blog Entry.  The block nearly fell together - neat corners and all.