Wednesday 14 October 2015

A little behind....

A little behind.  Who am I kidding but more on the diet later.

Life hasn't been very interesting since I talked to you last.   Chris, Sally, Kitty and me did go off on retreat for a week.   No prizes for guessing where but you could go here for a peek if you are new to the blog and are feeling curious.

With hindsight we'd have been better booking in to a convalescent home for a week.  Chris, Sally and me had the most stinking cold virus.   Chris (aka Typhoid Mary) gave it to Sally who kindly passed it on to me.   We've been passing it between us ever since.  The darned thing is going round in circles. We'll be lucky to be shot of it before Christmas.  Heck.... did I just say a dirty word!! 

Well.... none of us made much progress on our week away.  Apart from Kitty that is who somehow managed to avoid the bug.   I reckon that girl has the constitution of an ox.    I had intended to finish up my Natures Journey before we left but the dreaded lurgy put a halt to that.   So... it was the first job on my to do list at the cottage.....

I'm thrilled to bits with it.   Now all I have to do it quilt it....yikes!   I'm working up to hand quilting it.   Watch this space.

Chris started work on Message In A Bottle by Irene Blanck.   Here's her first block taking shape....

She actually prepared four blocks for this project.... no mean feat when you consider she's not much better at choosing fabrics than I am.    I'm afraid I didn't get photos of the other blocks.   Hard to take a decent photo when you are sneezing for Scotland.

Here's an almost good shot of Chris and Sally at the kitchen table.... would have been better if there heads were intact.... perhaps.

Sal is studying her copy of

She's combining the centre of one of Irene Blancks amazing quilts with the borders of another.  She is either inspired or totally off her trolley.  The jury is still out.    This is how the centre looked back then.....

now it has borders and lots of colourful circles around the bird.   Have to say.... it's looking great. Shame you can't see it.  You guessed.... I didn't get a photo of that either.

Kitty did a great job making this bag......

it's totally gorgeous!   The front applique is actually a zipped and gusseted pocket.  There are applique side pockets too and a magnetic clasp and ties and great tube lined handles.  Very professional looking.   Not only did she make the bag she started work on an amazing Dresden quilt.   Ooop's... no photo!

As for me.... I did sew... secret stuff!    Finally an excuse for having no photo's.   You'll all have to wait till next year to find out what I was sewing I'm afraid.    You see I signed up for Chookyblues 2015 SSCS Swap.    The girls threatened to kill me... or have me committed to an asylum if I so much as harboured a thought of signing up but I went ahead and did it anyway.    Am I scared they'll carry out their threats.... you bet!  If you don't hear from me by Christmas... call the police.

That's all the news from retreat.   Well... not quite all.   There was a bit of a drama one evening when I appeared to be loosing my eyesight.    After dinner I picked up my laptop to check mail and discovered the screen was so blurred I couldn't read anything.   Took off my specs.  Checked I had on the reading ones and not the distance.  Gave them a good clean and checked out the screen again.... couldn't make out a word!   Took off the glasses again and this time the room was blurred too.   Believe me I was petrified.   Chris and Kitty took one look at me and asked what was wrong.  Heck... I was about to burst into tears when I blurted out I was loosing my sight.   They were very concerned.... particularly about who was going to drive me to the hospital as we'd all had wine with dinner.   The situation was very tense when Sally came into the room and asked if anyone had seen her reading glasses.   You could almost hear the penny drop.   I was only wearing them wasn't I!!   Amazingly my sight was restored when I put on my own specs.    Duh!   We all had such a good laugh the profits of Tena Lady doubled.

I did make one major decision while on retreat though.  I need to seriously reduce the amount of fabric in my stash.  So I'm on a mission to make as many scrap quilts as I can as quickly as I can.   I won't tell you what the girls said when I told them my plan.  Actually they didn't say much.  They were too busy laughing.   Perhaps I should advertise for some new pals.

I have made a start.   Inspired by this gorgeous quilt I discovered at Quilting With The Past ll I've bought some drunkards path templates and started slashing my stash......

Each time I cut circle components I cut a template for a basket too. Remember those baskets?  Long time no see!    I was a bit miffed that it took longer than I thought to achieve......

a tub of both inner and outer quarter circles.   Well... I was cutting them one at a time.  Don't trust myself with a mini rotary cutter and a curved template.   I'm too fond of my fingers to try multiple cuts.     Looking at those tubs I remembered that (after watching an amazing demo at a show) I bought a Curve Master presser foot.   Of course I had to drop everything and give it a go.....

Wow!   Why haven't I used this before!   It's amazingly simple to sew curves without any pinning at all.  Seriously.  You need to check it out if you haven't already.    It took no time at all to stitch these....

without a pin in sight and they are pretty perfect too.   Finally I can see a light at the end of my stash tunnel.   All I have to do is keep going and not get distracted.... right!   What are the chances of that I wonder.  Somewhere between slim and none.......huh!

Thought you might like to see what Mac got up to while I was away.   He revamped the post box!

The postman is not impressed.   He's started opening the kitchen door and popping the post inside.

Before I go I have to admit I'm wearing my horse hair vest again.  Seems I never get to take it off these days.    I must apologise for not responding to everyone who left  a lovely comment on my last post.   Your comments really do mean a lot to me.  Knowing that there are lovely people out there who take the time to pop in and 'talk' to me really make does make a difference.  

If I didn't have you and my pals here I'd have gone totally bonkers by now.   I'm trying hard not to make excuses for being so impolite but there are times here when things just get too much to cope with and I tune out.  I have to switch off from the outside world and concentrate on doing what needs to be done for Mac and Mum.   Times like this I wish we were a bigger family and there was someone to share but as there is only the three of us and I'm the only one who is compos mentis (and that's debatable) I have no choice but to knuckle down and get on with it.

Things are a little calmer here at the moment so I'm hoping for a lovely spell of blog reading and commenting on your blogs.   I love blog visiting.  You gals (and guys)  are so inspirational.

Keeping my fingers crossed.....

Better get going.  I'm trying to clear out the big flower bed so I can do more laying of membrane and bark before Winter arrives in earnest.     It's all dig..dig...dig right now.

Hope you are all happy and healthy and having as much fun as you can pack into your days.

See you soon..... crossing those fingers tighter!

p.s.   The diet is going great.   I've lost 31 pounds and counting.   The only downside is my trousers are hanging at half mast and I'm too mean to buy smaller ones while I'm still loosing.   One of these days I'll be mooning in the high street!