Wednesday, September 30, 2015


I just returned from spending a couple of hours in the garden. Last week, Don and I cleaned up one  of our two plots, leaving the broccoli, peppers, eggplant, tomatoes and green beans, since they were still producing. I got many more bags of beans in the freezer and Don made up a batch of his salsa, and maybe there will be enough tomatoes for a second batch. Only he will determine that!

Today dawned clear and cool and I decided it was the day to begin digging in the newspapers and hay that has served as mulch all summer as well as the rotted horse manure that Don spread over the cleaned up half of the garden.  Yes, some people do think I'm a little crazy when I say I enjoy turning over dirt with a spade. I say, what's the difference between 2 hours digging and 2 hours of running in place on the treadmill.  Crazy is as crazy does.  For me, there's something therapeutic about actually working with the soil, nourishing it for the next season of growth. And it's a really good workout to boot!

In 2 hours I managed to dig in the cleaned up garden plot, and I feel as though it was time well spent. I took a couple of breaks during that time, chatting with the few other gardeners who were there and just enjoying the overall solitude of the place.  I listened for the birds that I normally hear out there but they've left--gone to warmer parts for the winter, I guess. There was a gentle breeze that kept me cool as I worked in the Autumn sun.  Even though the temp is in the low 60's today, I got quite warm in the garden.  I could hear the breeze rustling the leaves in the dried up corn stalks in the neighbor's garden.  So quiet and peaceful.  

So now I'm home and ready to do a little quilting. I have this banner pinned and ready to quilt up

and this table runner is ready as well. Both will go into the Etsy store for the fall season. 

Yesterday, I stitched the binding on the Swirling Geese quilt and made this for the label:  

and I just noticed that the date line is crooked.  I'm going to leave it like that.  In order to change it, I'd have to take off part of the binding and make an entire new label, and this is the best of the 4 or 5 practice ones that I made.  As you can see, I put Bonnie's name on the label. She and I worked together to piece the top, and she's going to do the final hand stitching.  Sandy, my teacher in my initial quilting class, explained that the last person to stitch on a quilt was the official quilter, so Bonnie's name goes on this quilt. Besides, it's being donated to her AAUW group, not mine, so it's fitting that her name be on the quilt.   

I also used up the extra fabric and made a couple of pillow cases to go with, one to store the quilt in and the second one, just because.

I'm having a peaceful and productive day and I hope you are too.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Quilting problem solved

In my last post, The feathers have been flying!, I was complaining explaining how I was again having problems with thread shredding and breaking as I was FMQ spirals. So frustrating since I had absolutely no problem when stitching FMQ feathers and when using the walking foot.  I'd had the machine to the repair guy last June when I was having the same problem, and he found nothing in the machine that would cause the thread breakage. So, on Friday, I decided to ask Professor Google about it.  I ignored the usual advice to rethread top and bottom, clean the machine, and to put in a new needle, because I'd already done that about 637 times already with no results.

One thing I did check was the throat plate. One person said that a burr on the throat plate can cause the thread to shred as it goes into the bobbin area and back up. Sure enough, I found what looks like a chip in the throat plate. I had a second plate handy--one with just a little hole in it for straight stitching instead of the oval opening in my usual throat plate--and I tried using that. Same shredding as before!  So that's not the problem but I'll still get that chip checked out.

The second suggestion was concerning the needle. One person suggested that the needle may be bending a little as I stitch circles, causing the thread to rub against the eye and shred.  She recommended using a 100/16 needle which would be stronger with a larger eye, so this weekend I looked for that size but could only find a jeans needle--like this picture off the Schmetz website but in size 110/18.

When I got home yesterday afternoon, I put in one of these needles and was able to finish all the spirals in the quilt without even one thread breakage.  I think I've found the solution to my problem! It's such a big needle though, it sounds like the machine is sewing with a spike as it goes into the fabric!  Definitely makes a large hole but in a cotton quilt that shouldn't be a problem. If I ever decide to quilt on silk, this large needle will stay in the package. :)

So, last night I finished the quilting on the AAUW quilt shown here:

I need to square it up and trim it today and stitch on the binding after I've made the label. Then I'll get together with my friend, Bonnie, and hand it over to her to do the hand stitching and to donate it to her AAUW fundraiser.  I've decided to name it "Geese in a Swirl" or "Geese A Swirlin'." I'm quite pleased overall with how it came out--not perfect quilting but quite nice all together. As someone said, "If you can't see the mistake while riding by on a galloping horse, it's all right."

Next on the agenda is to make a few sample blocks of Barbara Brackman's Civil War Jubilee quilt shown in this picture.

Image result for moda fabrics civil war jubilee pattern

I took this from Pinterest and it's a little dark compared to the pic on the pattern. I'm coordinating a block exchange for my guild (one of three monthly projects for members to choose from) and we're introducing them at next week's meeting, so I want to be prepared.  I have a large collection of Civil War era repro fabrics and would love to have another bed quilt made from them. 

Other than those 2 projects, I have to get a few groceries--guest arriving tonight for a few days of golfing with Don--and do a little housecleaning before he gets here.  Should be a relaxed kind of day and I hope yours is too.

Friday, September 25, 2015

The feathers have been flying!

I've been stitching feathers on my  quilt for the last 2 days and yesterday, I finished the last one! Yea! I really enjoyed doing them and I definitely will be practicing more advanced ways to stitch them, and "fancier" ones too.  After I stitched the last feather, I began the design on the flying geese--a simple triple loop in the center of each one. But with the first one, I began getting huge skipped stitches and thread breakage.  So, I ripped out the 2 geese I'd done and decided to stitch in the ditch around each goose.

While I was doing that, I decided on doing a  spiral in each of the background triangles of the geese and leave the centers to "pop" out.  I got about a dozen spirals done--they looked really nice, btw--and again with the skipping and breakage! That's when the verbal feathers began flying!

I called the store where I'd bought the new, expensive, all computerized machine and all I got was, "Change the needle and clean out the thread uptake area and bobbin area.  I can't really help you without seeing what the problem is."  Grrrrr!  I shut everything down and will do the cleaning and give it another try this morning if I have time.

Here's the deal:  I had no problem when I did hours and hours of free motion feather stitching. When I finished that, I put in a new spool of thread, same company and same weight but different color, and kept the same bobbin thread.  No problem with stitching straight lines with the walking foot. But now, with the free motion stitching loops and spirals, the problem starts.  It seems that the thread is shredding somewhere in the thread uptake area.  I see a lump of thread above the needle eye that gets too large to pass through the needle.  I put in a new needle when I began the quilting--a #80 top stitching needle which has a larger eye than other needles.  What could be causing the shredding?  I'd be happy to hear from anyone who might be able to advise me on this.

In the meantime, I'll clean out the thread uptake area really good--I have a little vacuum I can use in there as well as manual cleaning--and try it again. Wish me luck!

By the way, this quilt is really looking good!  If only I could finish the quilting!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Horse Feathers!

For some reason, "horse feathers!" popped into my mind as I went to enter the title of this post.  I think it means something like "phooey" but I'm not sure. So I asked Professor Google about it and I learned that this term originated in the 1920's or 30's and it means

"A term used in place of swear words, but with the same emphasis. Rooted at meaning "impossible," as horses obviously lack feathers."

So, I can't really apply it to my recent experience quilting the feathers in the charity quilt my friend and I made but I think I'll still keep it as my title of the day.

Two days ago I spent most of the day in the kitchen working with carrots and green beans, getting them into the freezer. I remember thinking to myself at the end that I'd been on my feet a lot that day and I didn't feel very uncomfortable as I had in the past. Before my knee replacement I could stand no more than 10 minutes at a time and since the surgery, I've noticed a gradual increase in how long I can stand and have been very pleased.  Well, pride goes before the fall, I guess. After my work was done in the kitchen, I sat down and put my feet up to watch some TV before getting dinner ready. Within half an hour, I literally could not move my knee AT ALL!  It hurt soooo much to move it!  I was nearly in tears. Thankfully, Don was home and could help me get up so I could try to bend it a little otherwise, I couldn't stand on it at all much less walk anywhere.  A chat with the on-call orthopedic at Mayo Clinic, some ice, Ibuprofen, and gentle movement, and an hour later it was much improved.  The doc told me to stay off it for awhile so Don, great guy that he is, fixed and served dinner and did the clean up.  Yesterday the knee was better and it's almost normal today, but I'm still not standing or walking too much for now.  It's the perfect time to isolate in the sewing room and finish those feathers! 

Yesterday, I gathered up all my courage and began quilting the charity quilt. First I made a fresh quilt sandwich and practiced about 4 times and I rather liked the feathers I did there. So, on to the real thing. First, I stitched in the ditch along the edges of the green polka dot sashing in the quilt.  That went very well, in my opinion (sometimes stitching in the ditch can be a real bugger!) so, on to the feathers.  I'm using a black Frixion pen to mark the spines of the feathers and then I'm free handing it in making the petals or whatever they're called.  Amazingly, I can do this!  I'm so surprised!  I've struggled for YEARS to master quilting feathers and now I can finally do it!  

Because the sashings are pretty long, I decided to stitch separate  feathers about 15 inches long and I'm doing a separate feather around the corners that you can see in the second photo.

Are they perfect feathers?  No--I'm not a computer after all. Are they fancy feathers?  No, I"m just beginning.  Are they good enough for this project?  Absolutely!

Yesterday, I did about half of the sashings before my shoulders and arms were tired and I had developed a splitting headache, which went away as soon as I stopped the quilting. Do you think I may have been a little tense!!!!  When I'm finished with this post, I'll be back in the sewing room, finishing the feathers and beginning on the flying geese units. I have a design figured out for them and they should be pretty easy to do.  Fingers crossed!

I also finished up this pumpkin patch candle mat and got that posted on my Etsy store, Jolly Ruby so you can take a look at that if you like.

So, those are my latest adventures in rehabbing a metal knee and mastering quilting feathers!  I hope I don't find myself in a situation today where I scream "Horse Feathers!" out of frustration!  Wish me luck finishing this quilt, okay?

Monday, September 21, 2015

A happy weekend

I had a very nice weekend--a little work and a little play, and that made Barb a happy girl.  I spent both days at home.  On Saturday, I just did a little housework--remember, I'd really cleaned house for the Handwork Group on Thursday evening--and made a trip to the grocery store.  I spent the afternoon at the computer, learning how to quilt feathers in my Craftsy class with Angela Walters.  I was practicing with paper and pencil as she was teaching, and I think I can actually do this!  Of course, working on the quilt will be a bit different, I'm sure.

I was looking through my box of batting scraps when I found this. Back in 2013, I think, I'd taken a class at a machine quilting show in Milwaukee. This was the piece we worked on, honing our skills at quilting on the domestic sewing machine.  During class, I'd completed stitch in the ditch work around the wedding rings and also the more intricate designs in the center and corners of the square.  


But I didn't even get started on the second part of the exercise and I haven't done any of the quilting in the pink borders.  I'd planned on finishing it when I got home and making a large pillow out of it.  

So, when I discovered it, hidden in that bin of batting, I realized that this would be the perfect practice piece before I begin the feathers on the Flying Geese quilt. Working on this piece is on today's agenda. With luck and hope, I'll have enough confidence to begin quilting the real quilt after I finish with this.

On Saturday, I also did a little work on getting this candle mat completed.  I'd already embroidered the 4 pumpkin motifs so I just needed to add the borders and stitch it all together. I decided to follow the directions in the pattern which were to make the quilt sandwich kind of inside out (a little differently than when adding binding) and stitch it all together around the edges. Then I turned it right side out through a 3" opening, which ended up being 4" after I'd shoved all the fabric and batting through. But no matter--that opening is pressed and pinned and ready to be hand stitched. A little machine quilting and it'll be ready for the Jolly Ruby shop.

I love the little spiders!  But not in real life!

Sunday was a day for working in the garden. Both Don and I went out there--he harvested and I pulled weeds in preparation for sowing a cover crop for the winter.  In addition to bringing home some green beans, tomatoes, jalapenos, and cabbage, we also found these beautiful carrots ready to be pulled and brought home. Some of these carrots are between 2 and 3 inches in diameter!  We've never had such great carrots before. Also found a couple of onions that had  been overlooked when we harvested the onions.

And another good thing in the garden yesterday was my discovery of 2 earthworms!  This is great news since we've been gardening in very sandy soil and everyone is doing their best to add organic materials to lure in the worms.  Don and I have been spreading as much cow shit manure as we can, and I guess it's paying off now!  Welcome, little wormies!

Today's task is to get these carrots cleaned up and mostly in the freezer, as well as the green beans. Don will be making salsa out of the tomatoes and peppers he brought home.  I think for dinner tonight, I'll use some of the carrots for a grated carrot and apple salad and I'll cook up some of the green beans as well. I'm getting hungry just thinking about it so I'd better get a move on and get my work done.  

Friday, September 18, 2015

Stormy day

Wow!  That pretty much sums up the beginning of my yesterday starting at 4 AM, when I woke up to the loudest clap of thunder I've ever heard!  I honestly thought there had been an explosion in the house, it was that loud! Followed by another hour or more of lightening and thunder with intermittent downpours of rain.  I'm not sure how much rain we got from that storm but it had to have been 3 or 4 inches. Flash flood warnings later in the day in an area about 20 miles north of us, but no problem here.

Well, since I was awakened at 4 AM, and hadn't returned to sleep by 5 AM, I decided I might as well get out of bed and get on with the day.  I accomplished all the jobs I'd set out for myself--finished cleaning, grocery shopping, baked a cake, and got ready for the Handwork Group who arrived at 6:30 (PM, that is).

I had such a good time with them.  Six members of the Guild came over with binding to sew, cross stitch to count, and embroidery to stitch. We took over the entire basement--I'd banished Don to the upstairs of the house and he didn't mind too much!--and talked about our cats and dogs and the crazy things they do, our very intelligent and oh, so cute grandkids, a little bit about quilting and sewing, and most surprising to me, we had a little discussion about poop!  Cecil told the story about a little boy visiting a sheep farm.  He held up one of the sheep pellets and solemnly informed his grandmother, "This is not a blueberry!"  We all laughed so hard we nearly fell off our chairs! For those who've never seen sheep poo, here are a few pellets! Looks a lot like rabbit and deer poo. And blueberries!

DonVathome's embedded Photo

This was my project for last night:    

I'll make up the embroidered runner and put it for sale in my Etsy shop in time for Christmas, I hope. I usually do embroidery with 2 strands of floss but this pattern recommends using #8 perle cotton. What the heck, I thought, I'll try something new. And I love it!  It's bringing a much nicer texture to the embroidery, and I don't have to struggle with pulling one strand at a time out of the 6 strand floss. This is what I accomplished last night, both at the group and for a couple of hours afterward while watching several episodes of BBC's "London Hospital."  I'll be doing more work on Santa today as well.  

Not much else going on here today, since all the housekeeping chores are finished.  I want to spend some time with my on-line Craftsy class on quilting feathers before I begin working on the AAUW quilt.

For sure the quilting will be started sometime this weekend!

So, it looks like a bit of a leisurely day for me. Maybe we'll even order pizza for dinner!  That's my kind of cooking!  I hope you have a good day as well, and a better weekend coming up.  

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Summer's end

The past few days, I've been involved with beets, potatoes and closing down the swimming pool.  I finally made it to the garden to begin the harvest. I know, I stated several days ago that I was going to begin, but somehow, the pull of the sewing room was too strong!  Anyway, yesterday, I washed all the potatoes and even cooked some of them into our dinner dish--organically grown potatoes, fresh from the garden, are soooo good!

And I washed up the beets and got about 20 bags of them in the freezer. While I was dicing up the cooked beets, I had to take a few tastes, you know. Those bits that are too small or too oddly shaped. By the time I was finished getting them into the freezer, I'd had my fill of beets for the day.  This year I diced all of them, thinking that I can throw a few cubes in my salads all winter long. I love beets in a green salad with a little Feta or blue cheese on top.  Yum!

Today is a cleaning day.  I offered to open my home for a monthly "Handwork Group."  I announced this at guild earlier in the month. The idea is to bring some hand stitching--quilting, embroidery, knitting, whatever--and have an evening of stitching and companionship.  I love working on my quilts but it is a rather solitary hobby. When the guild offers a Saturday SewIn, I go if I possibly can. I enjoy the company of fellow quilters so much, so I decided to offer another opportunity to get together. I believe there will be 5 of us here tomorrow night so I have to get the house cleaned up and tomorrow I'll be baking a cake--Provencal Apple Spice Cake--that will be just right for a snack at this time of the year.

Oh, and I have another big bag of green beans that have to be put into the freezer as well.  And the laundry has to get done. And I have to get an oil change in the car.  Don's on the golf course.

'Nuff said.

Next day:  I wrote the above yesterday but didn't post it, thinking I'd add some pics. Obviously, that didn't  happen.  So to update,  I got most of the cleaning done and the beans are in the freezer. The car got it's oil change--2 hours! What's with that??--and the laundry is finished. Don had a good time golfing with his buds.

Today, I finish the little bit of cleaning that's left and make a quick run to the store so I can bake the cake for tonight. And then I have to tidy up the sewing room and make sure my hand stitching project is ready to go tonight.

So, here's the obligatory photo--a vase of zinnias I picked in the garden the other day.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Sleepless night

Every now and then I have a night where I simply cannot fall asleep, even though I feel very tired. Ever happen to you?  As soon as I snuggle down under the covers to sleep, my eyes fly open and I know it's over for the night, or at least a good share of the night.  Why does that happen??? I like to read in bed for at least a half hour before I go to sleep and most nights I find myself drifting off as I try to read. Most of the time, I do fall right off to sleep when I put the book down but why do I have these nights of insomnia?  I think I'll have to consult the guy sitting on top of the mountain to get an answer to that!

Anyway, that was the way it was last night.  When I realized that sleep was going to be hard to find, I got up and spent a few hours in the sewing room.  By 2 AM I was tired enough and I'd done some extra things in the quilting area that I'd been meaning to get at.

I had made these Autumn colored strip blocks as a trial for a quilt we'll be making at the Guild retreat in October.  The quilt will be made from strips of yellow and gold and will be given to a Guild member who has a serious illness, so I knew these sample blocks weren't going into the quilt.  I think they make up a cute table runner--I just have to sandwich it and quilt it up and it'll be ready to go into the Jolly Ruby shop.

I also prepared this  Halloween panel for sandwiching and quilting--again, it will go into the shop when it's finished.

I'll use this candy corn fabric for backing and binding. Sorry the flash made it so bright.

Earlier in the evening, I completed this pieced back for the quilt top that my friend, Bonnie, and I made last January to donate to her chapter of the AAUW for their silent auction fundraiser in early November.  I have to get it quilted up and the binding machine stitched on early enough so Bonnie can hand stitch the binding and finish it up in time for the auction.

This is the finished quilt top--a spiral of flying geese made up in 30's reproduction fabrics.  I thought I had enough of the green polkadot fabric to make up the back, but no--I was about a half yard short. So yesterday afternoon I made the 50 mile drive to the quilt shop in hopes that they would have more of the fabric.  Lady Luck was on my side! They had 2 yards left, so I bought all of it.  I think I can make a couple of pillow cases out of the extra.

I decided to stitch feathers in the green sashings.  Quilting feathers is something that I have yet to conquer and I figured by the time I finish this quilt, I should be able to stitch feathers in my sleep.  So last night, I pulled out one of my machine quilting books to review how to do this. I practiced a little, and lo and behold! The feather came out "not too bad!"  I also have a Craftsy class on quilting feathers that I should take another look at before I begin stitching next week. I'm determined to master this!  Wish me luck, okay?

So, this quilt will be sandwiched tomorrow along with the table runner and Halloween banner when I go to the Leisure Center here in town to use their big tables for the pinning. Even though we now have a very nice laminate floor in the basement, (instead of a crappy, stinky old carpet!) there's no way I'm crawling on my hands and knees to pin quilts!  Working on a table is difficult enough for me--stretching to pin the center of a bed sized quilt takes enough of a toll on my lower back!

Earlier in the week, I'd played with my crumbs and made up a couple pieces of fabric to use in a zipper pouch.  The Guild always does a gift exchange for our winter holiday party and this year, we're to make a zipper pouch with a surprise of some sort tucked inside.  I was teased a lot this past year for all my crumb sewing--and many guild members brought me crumbs from their sewing throughout the year, so I decided that a crumby zipper pouch was the way to go.  We're also asked to make a second pouch that we'll use in a sale in the spring. I have so many crumbs, I think I'll just go ahead and make the second one out of crumbs as well. Or I could use some of my overflowing bag of selvages instead. Hmmm.  Decisions!

So, that's what's been happening in my sewing room lately. I'm pleased to be getting some of these projects finished and off the sewing table, but there's a whole pile of other projects just waiting for me and whispering, "Choose me!  Choose me!"  

Friday, September 11, 2015


I've been busy in the sewing room as well as in the embroidery room. No, I don't have a room dedicated to embroidery--although I think I have enough floss to fill a small room!--but I do spend time every day in the sun porch doing hand stitching. I'll do that as long as I can before the weather gets too cold to be out there and then I'll have to find a space in the house with good enough lighting.

I've been wanting to get some items listed in my Etsy shop, Jolly Ruby, before the fall holiday season gets into full swing, and when I saw Halloween items in the stores when I took Lily school shopping in August, I figured I'd better get a move on.  Some of these things were begun months ago and are now finished up and ready for sale.  

Last winter, knowing that I'd be super busy with the "part time" temp job I took and that I'd follow that up with knee replacement and rehab for a few weeks if not months, and then spend the summer with Lily, I had a huge sale in January. My inventory has been way down these past 9 months and now I'm ready to get back into it.

These are the items I have in the shop at this time, and I have plans for more things as soon as I get them finished up. More complete descriptions and pix are in the Etsy listings if you want to see more.

This is a throw quilt I made with an assortment of Halloween fabrics in a snowball pattern. It has a pieced back using some of the same fabrics as on the front.

I made 2 of these Shabby Fabric patchwork pumpkin table runners and used another Halloween/Autumn fabric for the backing.

I made 2 similar table runners using purple Halloween fabrics in the pinwheels with the black on black sashing and borders as shown here . . . 

and the other runner is made using orange Halloween fabrics for the pinwheels, shown below. The two of them are the same size and are quilted the same way.

And I finished the embroidered Halloween Parties table runner that is done in black work embroidery on muslin with an hourglass border made with black on black fabric and off white fabric dotted with tiny spiders. The backing is the spider fabric.

I really like this embroidered piece--it's the second one I've made--and part of me hopes that no one wants to buy it, but most of me wants it to sell.  Every dime from the sale of items in my Etsy shop goes to the Jolly Ruby Fund which distributes the money to help provide for the needs of adults with disabilities.  When I initially retired from my job, I decided that setting up this shop would be a win-win for me:  I get to keep making quilted items using my ginormous fabric stash and the money goes to a very worthy cause.  I guess that's actually a 3 win situation--I make quilts, stash gets smaller (but does it really ever get smaller????) and people with disabilities get assistance.  

So, I'm off to work on a few more items I want to put in the shop, and then a trip to the grocery store so we have something to eat for dinner.  

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Labor Day Weekend

These green beans made it to the freezer the other day, but now I have another picking of beans waiting to be put away in there.  I'm beginning to wonder if the bean harvest will ever end!  And I'm also wondering if the tomato harvest will ever begin!  So far, we've picked less than a dozen tomatoes from our 10 or so plants.  They have lots of green tomatoes on the vines but ripening has been going very slowly and next week we're supposed to go into the big cooling down period called Autumn. And I had high hopes of making many jars of salsa and pasta sauce.  Sigh. Guess I'll have to work on quilts instead.

Made great progress yesterday on the Halloween embroidery and I got that finished today. Hopefully, I'll be able to make up the borders and get the entire top finished today and ready to be quilted.

I love this pattern from Bird Brain Designs.  I think these little witches and ghosts are cute and not the least  bit frightening.  Maybe one day I'll make up one for my own table!

Before I can move to the sewing room though, I need to make a grocery run and probably should get to the garden to harvest the beets and maybe the carrots.  Carrots just need to be cleaned off and stored in the fridge and some of the beets as well. The rest of the beets will get cooked, sliced, and put in the freezer for the winter. Love me some beets on the cold days of January!

So, that's what my Labor Day weekend is looking like--harvesting and quilting. What do you have planned for yours?

Thursday, September 3, 2015

What to do on a dreary, foggy, rainy kind of day?

You can see in this picture of my backyard that it's quite overcast and dreary here today and yesterday, it rained like crazy--roads flooded in some places as I drove back home from Spooner, WI. But no flooding here in Menomonie, thank goodness.

You may be able to see a huge mound of brown dirt on the other side of the fence, in the lower middle of the picture.  The local chapter of  Habitat for Humanity is building a house on that vacant lot and they dug the basement earlier this week.  Neither Don nor I have building skills, but I've volunteered to provide lunch for the work crew on a few occasions and I also will coordinate with one of the churches to make quilts for the new family.  Absolutely love Habitat and all the good it does!

Well, it's the perfect day to spend in the sewing room working on one of my many UFOs, WIPs, or brand new projects whispering to me.  What to do?  How to choose?  Unfortunately, I will  not  be doing much sewing today since I have these staring at me, begging to be plunged into boiling water and then into ice cold water and finally, incarcerated in plastic bags and stored in the freezer.  I wouldn't like to have that done to me, but the beans never protest.

After I finish the beans, I have to drive over to Tomahawk, WI to the LQS there to pick up my Row By Row kit and license plate.  I wrote about our overnight trip to Tomahawk here earlier this summer so Lily could get a little fishing in with cousin Wayne.  I didn't realize there was a quilt shop there or I would have managed a stop in, so I have to return and pick up the Row by Row for my "Summer of '15 Memories" quilt.  Yesterday I was in Spooner to get the Row by Row from that shop as I remembered that I'd taken Lily to the rodeo there in July, and I stopped by The Busy Bobbin in Rice Lake, one of my favorite shops, especially for batiks, to pick up their Row by Row kit. 

Here's the Row by Row for The Busy Bobbin:  but the Thimbles shop in Spooner doesn't have a picture of their row on their website.  I'll be posting pics of all the rows as I get them finished.  This project is one of those that's whispering to me!

Instead of sewing on the Row by Row or anything else when I get home, I'll be sitting in the screen porch trying to finish the embroidery work on this Halloween table runner:  

As you can see, I only have the last witch and the broom handle left to stitch and then I can finish it off and put it up for sale on my Etsy shop.

I'm anxious to get my Etsy store up and running again--Halloween and Christmas items sell quite well. I sold out nearly everything in January because I knew I would be too busy throughout the winter and spring with working and then surgery and in the summer with Lily here. But now, it's time to restock the shelves and open the door for business.

So, that's what my day looks like--full of pleasant tasks to keep me busy and out of trouble!