Thursday, December 29, 2016

Best of 2016!!

What better way to get back to my blog than to look back at 2016 and pick a few of the best posts from the year.  I discovered Meadow Mist Design's Linky Party and it sounded like a good way to jump back in and maybe connect with some new bloggers along the way!


So...the idea is to find the top 5 "best" posts from the year.  Let me tell you...I don't have many posts to choose from.  2016 was not a productive year as far as blog posts go...but I'll see what I can come up with...


1.  Most Comments:  Two Finishes!

This isn't much of a surprise since I was sharing my finished Quiltville Mystery quilt...those are always popular!!





2.  Most Views:  Quiltville Mystery Revealed!

Again...not a surprise...it's always fun to see the final result of the mystery!  This one was especially fun and challenging for me.  I made it "half-size" and it really took me out of my comfort zone for colors and fabrics, but I love it!




3. Meeting "Sew-lebrities"

I was lucky enough to meet up with a few amazing people that I admire and have greatly influenced my quilting life...

Lisa Bongean is amazing with her wool and wool/cotton designs.  I wish I could have one of each of her kits!!  :)  I loved her workshop and would take another if I get the chance!

This was the second time I met Jenny Doan and she is like none other...she's truly feels like a friend you've known forever.

And of course...the renowned Bonnie Hunter.  Even though I've met her more times than I can count, I never miss the chance to take a class (or cruise!!)



4.  Kitty Cats and Quilts...

What can I say....cats and quilts just go together.  Posts with cats are always a favorite and I've found many like-minded quilter friends through our love of kitties!  Our kitties bring us much joy and comfort...I'm so thankful for them!

RIP Sweet Smokey...best fur spreader ever!

Chloe...she loves all quilts (on her terms, of course!)

Stella...is our apprentice quilt inspector and she is learning at lightning speed!

5.  My Favorite Finishes

It's truly hard to pick favorites...but I'll keep it to three!!


Quiltmaker's Itty Bitty Sew Along....I love these bitty blocks...I love that it all came from my "pre-cut" stash too!

This was the first "all batik" quilt I've made and I ended up loving it!  Batiks have never been something I'm super drawn to, but this quilt helped me change my thinking!  Plus it was made for a very special brother turning 50!!

My leader/ender Spoolin' Around quilt.  This was a labor of love!  Two years of making spools as leaders and enders finally assembled into this beauty!  Plus, it has the sentimental aspect of being made with spool fabric swapped with a my best quilting buddy, Lisa.


So there you have it....my Best (and Favorite) posts from 2016.  I'll be linking up with Meadow Mist Designs if you want to check out the other bloggers!

Wishing you all the best in 2017!!  Once again, it will be a year of changes for our house/family...BIG changes...weddings, retirements, moves...and MORE!!  Stay tuned!!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle



Friday, October 28, 2016

Feline Friday

I thought this would be a good opportunity to let you get to know our new kitty, Stella, and see how she has been getting along in her new home.  She was adopted by us at 5 months old.  We found out after we decided to adopt her that she had been adopted by another family and they returned her because she was too active!  At first, I thought, "oh no, what did we get ourselves into?"  But then I was told her original owner worked away from home all day and Stella (her name was Tulip then) was kept in a bathroom all day and because she was active at night (understandable after being locked up all day), she ended up getting put back in the bathroom at night!  Poor kitty was lonely and lacking activity...no wonder she was hyper when she was let out for a couple hours.

Anyway, from the minute she arrived, she hasn't shown any negative behaviors other than jumping on the counters, but she is learning that is a no-no and I hardly ever see her there anymore.  She does like to sleep on the top of the refrigerator and since the counter she jumps on to get there isn't a "food" counter, I haven't been too worried about it.  From day one, she has been a calm, playful, loving kitty!

You can see she appreciates a cozy quilt!  Zzzzz....  

I found her this way one morning shortly after I got out of bed....

She's explored all the good "spots." 

Chloe has been fine with her...they are not best buds, but they will play occasionally...mostly Stella just wants to keep up with whatever Chloe is doing...here they are helping me give my Featherweight a good oiling.

 -almost- cuddling....

I find them like this a lot...Stella seems to copy what Chloe is doing.  It's amazing to watch...

A few minutes later...seriously, I've never seen a cat literally copy what another cat is doing.  I think it's adorable! 

This is something she's started doing that really freaks me out.  She stands, sits, walks on the railing on our second floor.  The other side of that railing is 12-13 feet down to the first floor!  Eeek!!  The pictures aren't great because I'm taking them from across the room, but I didn't want to get any closer to her and possibly scare her and then she'd fall!! 

I don't know how to get her to stop doing this!! 

Anyway...she's become a wonderful addition to our family...we just love her!  I'm linking up with Feline Friday over at Sarah Did It blog.

Happy Quilting!

~Michelle

Friday, October 21, 2016

Summer Quilt Finishes...

Looking back through pictures, I realized I only have to finishes two share from the last couple of months...finishes that are MINE, anyway.  I've made three tshirt quilts in the last few months for clients, quilted many tops for clients and for my local guild's Honor Quilt program, and I also made lots of progress on my WIPs...so I guess I can't complain too much!

First up, is a quilt I made for my brother's 50th birthday in August.  I rarely use batiks, and I'm not sure I've ever made a quilt with ONLY batiks.  I LOVE how this quilt turned out.  I used one of the disappearing hourglass block patterns found at Missouri Star Quilt Company.  This is one I would definitely do again!

I finished the binding while we were on a trip to Atlanta.  Our hotel had this nice fence for picture taking!

It's hard to see in this picture, but I used Omni's new variegated thread, which I love!! 

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to give him the quilt in person, but here he is when he received it.  I think he likes it!

Next up is my Spoolin' Around quilt.  I think I've mentioned before that my friend Lisa and I swapped fabric for the spools for almost 2 years.  Most of my spools were made as leaders and enders.  When I got to the last 100 or so, I just had to finish them up!!


I quilted it with a pattern called "Chartreuse."  It's a little too busy on the front to see such a detailed design, but it looks awesome on the back!


I love, love, love, the quilt...but I'll be honest and tell you I'm wondering if it's "too" busy on our bed.  What do you think?  I definitely think I need something other than WHITE pillows!

 In my next post, I'll share how my summer block of the week went and a few other works in progress!! 

 Happy Quilting!
~Michelle

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Helllooooooo!

Remember me?  :)  

I thought I'd give you a quick snapshot of the last few months...

At the end of July, we went to Florida...my husband was able to perform our son's promotion to Captain.  I'm a proud mama, to say the least!!

We were so happy to be all together for this exciting event!


We decided to take advantage of being all together and being 15 minutes from a cruise port...we cruised to the Caribbean for a few days...it was HOT in July!! 

Surprisingly, we didn't take a lot of pictures...especially of each other.  Luckily, we have a few group shots from the cruise photographers.  It was soooo much fun and so many memories to cherish forever. 

In August...we welcomed a new family member.  This is Stella.  At the time, she was a 5 month old rescue and she is a big love bug.  I think I said this about Chloe too, but it's incredible how Stella fit in to our family so perfectly from the minute she walked in our house.  Someone from the shelter brought her over (we had to pass a home visit!) and she just started walking around like she owned the place.  We love her!  She's growing in to those ears!

Also in August, I had the opportunity to attend a lecture with Jenny Doan with the Carolina Pine Needle Quilt Guild in North Carolina.  Jenny was wonderful and inspiring, but the really great part about it, was going with my longtime internet friend, Fran (in pink).  I have "known" Fran for over 10 years through a Yahoo group we've belonged to.  I met her in person for the first time earlier this year, but this time we spent the weekend at her family's beach house and got to know each other even better.  So much fun! 

In late September, my mom came for a visit.  I made arrangements for her and I to attend two workshops with Bonnie Hunter at my former guild in Delaware.  I'm so thankful for the ladies of Helping Hands Quilt Guild...they've been so welcoming while I'm "back" here on the east coast.  My mom is going to kill me for posting this picture...but I think it's cute!  :)
pic borrowed from Bonnie Hunter!

I love taking workshops with Bonnie (or cruises! )...and this Talkin' Turkey quilt has been on my bucket list for a very long time!  Win win!! 

The second workshop was My Blue Heaven...
pic borrowed from Bonnie Hunter!

I also shared my half size Allietare with Bonnie...I was a little hesitant because I wasn't sure how she felt about me altering her pattern.  :)
pic borrowed from Bonnie Hunter!
 Last week...we spent a few days camping in the Shenandoah National Forest.  It was so beautiful...I could have stayed for a few more weeks!!  :)  

Thank you for hanging in there with me.  In my next post, I'll catch up with quilty projects I've been working on over the summer.  I love this time of year...cooler temps, pumpkins, retreat time....and who can forget?  It's almost mystery quilt time!!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

June AND July Update

Hi Friends!  It's been almost two months since my last post!!  Time just flies, doesn't it??  Things are good here....except for maybe being just a bit too hot and humid!  I enjoy my air conditioning, that's for sure!!

We recently took a short trip to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee...it was so fun!  We went zip lining and rode an Alpine Coaster, saw a comedy show, hiked a little bit in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park...it was just beautiful!

Here we are all decked out in our zip lining gear.  This was the first time for both of us, but we'll do it again if we get the chance!!


I am so thankful for the wonderful friends I've met through quilting all over the country.  I met Lynn at a quilt retreat in Pennsylvania and we seemed to hit it off quite nicely!  She recently was vacationing with her family in Williamsburg and we were able to meet up for lunch.  It was so nice to catch up with her...can't wait to see her again at retreat in January!!


On the quilting side of things...I'm plugging along with my ongoing projects...this is Buttermilk Basin's Block of the Month.  My mom is doing this one too, it's so fun to see her progress and she's loving her (re)new found love of wool applique.  :)

I also signed up for Primitive Gatherings block of the week...here are the first four weeks.  The quilt will have a "crazy quilt" look when finished...we've had a few sneak peeks and it's a-maz-ing! 

I also had two LARGE custom tshirt quilts to do... 

I was glad to have this big job finished, and I know the tshirt owner will be very pleased!

I started a new quilt that will be a gift...this block is the disappearing hourglass (tutorial from Missouri Star Quilt Company).  It is pretty simple and easy to assemble.  I actually have all but 9 of the blocks sewn together...so more pics will come soon of the finished quilt top.

Oh and one more finish...this winter table mat from Primitive Gatherings.  I love it!! 

Hope you all are having a wonderful summer...enjoy it while you can, it'll be over before we know it!

Happy Quilting!
~Michelle