Friday, June 28, 2013

End of the Week Doings

Can't believe Friday is nearly gone and we are wrapping up another week.  This week has gone by in a flash........seems like months ago that I was at rug camp.

Today the Sew Crazies celebrated their sixth anniversary with a trip to Sweet Home Quilt Company in Conyers.  It was a fun trip with six of the seven of us in attendance.  A little retail therapy, food and friends.  What more can you ask?  Wish I had taken a photo, but I just plain forgot.  We were way too busy.

Got My Family back from the quilter (who did a great job) and it is bound and labelled.  Feels good to know that it is not going to be a UFO and that I can actually mark it finished!



Completed the bottom borders and all of the lettering on Love Grows in the Garden.  My plan is to completely finish the borders this weekend, leaving only background to hook.


I also have a couple of other things I would like to get done over the weekend so that I can count them as finishes.  This year is half done and I have kept up a pretty good pace with my finishes, but I would really like to get some more UFOs done.  It would be great to see the UFO finishes equal to the new project finishes.

Sara Ashley had a great time at Camp Winshape this week.  



GRATITUDES:
Friends who understand when you just "need" that pattern, fabric, etc.
Finished projects.
Dreams of new projects.

Take care,
Jennie

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Words & Blooms Two

Finished Week Two of Words to Live By and Summer Blooms.  Got number four in the mail today.  I was trying really hard not to get behind, but rug camp got in the way.  Number four is pretty ambitious, too!!

Summer Blooms

Words to Live By

Today was spent in the kitchen preserving some of our garden's bounty..........12 pints of green beans and 5 quarts of squash.  Lots of work, but it will be so good come winter.


GRATITUDES:
Memories of my Mama preserving veggies from my Papa's garden.
The rumble of summertime storms.
Full bellies.

Take care,
Jennie

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Georgia Girls

There were several fellow Dogwood ATHA members in Jeanne Benjamin's class at Caraway this year, with each working on something very different.


Jeanne in front of some of her gorgeous and irresistible wool......a fair amount of which found its way home to Georgia, I might add.


Laura with her incredible American Fancies Rug (by Eric Sandberg).  This rug is an adaptation of an antique rug and was originally hooked by the late Nancy Thompson.


Barbara came prepared to hook a turkey and then found this wonderful Welcome rug in Jeanne's patterns and couldn't resist.  I love her wonderful prim style and colors.


Mary worked on this great sampler and got all of this done in a four cut!!!


Deste was working on this great Shaker Village...........little did she know she would spend most of the week hooking windows!!!


Diane was working on this beautiful Fall New England pictorial from New Earth Designs.  The colors are wonderful, and I love the church.


Kathie worked on this stunning peacock by Pris Butler.  It is a gift for her husband.  

Can you believe how much we all got done???  Wish you could see these in person.  The photos don't do them justice.

Today I spent the day with my fourteen year old grandson, Robert, and his mom, my eldest daughter, Christi.  We had a great lunch at Nico's in Hogansville and then did some antiquing in Hogansville, Woodbury and Newnan.  Robert was great.....who would have thought he would enjoy this.....and got the buy of the day, a WWII Japanese bayonet.  Doing his due diligence, he researched his treasure on line and found that it was, indeed, not a WWI bayonet as tagged, but an unusual WWII Japanese one.


GRATITUDES:
A day making memories with daughter and grandson.
A sweet old dog snoozing in my chair.
Naps.

Take care,
Jennie


Sunday, June 23, 2013

Rug Camp

It is back to reality after an incredible week at Caraway Rug Camp.  The ride up and back was spent with a packed car and three of the best friends a girl could ever ask for. And then a week with old and new friends and an incredible teacher, Jeanne Benjamin.

I worked diligently and was able to get two rugs planned and underway.  I am so pleased with both of them. Now to get them finished while I still have some momentum!


Pomegranate Basket by Susan Quicksall of Holly Hill Designs


Love Grows in My Garden by Lori Brechlin FolkArt adapted by Spruce Ridge Studios.


Returned home to a garden full of ripening veggies, for which I am thankful. It does mean I will not be spending whole days hooking, but those veggies surely will taste good come winter!

Last night I made the decision to square up the String X quilt blocks and donate them to Heartstrings as blocks ready for assembly. That means I can count those blocks finished.

Today was a day set aside to spend time with my sweet and understanding husband. We had lunch at one of our favorite restaurants and spent the afternoon just riding around the countryside and stopping to buy fresh Georgia peaches (homemade ice cream and cobbler later this week.....yum).  It was a great day.

GRATITUDES
Blake
Country roads
The sweet smell of fresh peaches.

Take care,
Jennie

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Primitive Gatherings Summer BOW

Just completed the first Primitive Gatherings Summer Block of the Week. The name of it is "Words to Live By" and the words are actually inked on after you complete your stitching......a little scary. I am pretty satisfied with mine, though I think perhaps I should make it a tad darker. I will live with it for awhile first and see. These blocks will finish at 12", so it should end up as a pretty good sized quilt.




The Summer Freebie is a series called Summer Blooms.....more little 4" finished blocks.  I really like them, too.




Time to finish getting ready for rug camp now.  I am so excited!!!!

GRATITUDES
A very special friends who loves us like parents.
Robert's successful surgery.
Dance recitals and the sweet memories of my daughters that they evoke.

Take care,
Jennie


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Sweet Summertime

My intentions are good, but it is almost impossible for me to pass up great BOMs. As I have said before, I believe it is an addiction. Nor, as you will see, can I pass up those cute summer offerings that present as a Block of the Week. And what on earth makes me think I can keep up????

This summer I succumbed to two offerings. One is a great wool on cotton club from Primitive Gatherings which includes a small freebie block with it weekly. I will post both of those together later, but the small block is already stitched and my intent is to stitch the larger one before leaving for rug camp on Sunday.

The other one is a wall hanging with a large central block surrounded by 24 smaller 4" finished blocks. It is from Temecula Quilt Company. Half of the 24 blocks are appliqu├ęs and the remaining 12 are the tiniest of Dresden Plates. Too cute for words, this little Sweet Summertime quilt.  Here are the first two blocks.



This is my first post using my new iPad.......thanks, Blake..... and figuring out how to post the photo was a bit of a challenge.  Hopefully it will be easier with experience.

GRATITUDES
An indulgent husband.
An unexpected phone call from a cousin who had been out of touch for awhile.
Anticipation of upcoming rug camp.

                                                                      
Take care,
Jennie

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Happy Birthday Ashley!

Ashley celebrated her 39th birthday on June 2nd.  I can't believe that my baby is almost middle-aged!!
We had her family celebration last night here at our home with an old-fashioned Southern meal .....lots of veggies, mac and cheese, roast beef and cornbread.  And we followed it with a seven-layer cake with chocolate frosting and ice cream.  Talk about stuffed.........we were!



GRATITUDES
Family birthday dinners.
Veggies fresh from the garden.
Daughters.

Take care,
Jennie

A Little Quilting Time

Squeezed in a little quilting time last week......trying to get ahead, since I know I will miss a whole week of anything but hooking this month when I am at Caraway.

Here is Block 10 of Garden Baskets.  I am excited to be getting close to the end of this BOM.  Baskets are my favorite, and these little ones are just plain cute.


All of the String X blocks are assembled.  They are a bit more fiddly than making regular string blocks.  They involve lots more trimming, and then you must also add the triangles.  I do like the results, though, and it is nice that every little bit came from scraps and stash.  I am now ready to trim the remaining blocks to size and assemble the top.



I couldn't resisit assembling one set of blocks just to see how they were going to look.


GRATITUDES
The earthy garden smell after a summer rain.
A good haircut.
Hugs from grandchildren.....and children.

Take care,
Jennie

Friday, June 7, 2013

Good Bye Old Friend

Blake and I purchased our first car as a married couple a couple of weeks after our wedding back in 2000.  Our blue Ford Expedition has been a faithful friend to us for the past 13 years, sharing many life experiences over 185,000 miles.  But alas, the time finally came today to say good bye to her.  Maybe it sounds crazy, but it was a bittersweet moment.


We are excited over our new Ford F-150 truck and I know we will enjoy it once we get to know it better.  But that old blue Expedition will always hold a special place in our memories.


GRATITUDES
Memories
"New car smell"
Gracious people.

Take care,
Jennie

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Not Easter




Yes, I know it isn't Easter, but Jackson doesn't care.  When he found that big bag of Easter Eggs in the garage, he was ready for the hunt.  Anything to entertain the little guy.


And then it was on to mow the grass with Pop.  He had no problem learning to operate the Zero Turn mower........unlike his Mimi, who just learned with some degree of difficulty a couple of weeks ago.

The nice blue shirt.......well, he chose this one when he finished Vacation Bible School at his church today.  And, as he was careful to point out, it matches his shorts.

GRATITUDES
The expanding vocabulary and surprisingly "grown up" conversation with a four year old grandson.
Pancakes, bacon and fresh eggs for dinner.

Take care,
Jennie

Chicken update

It has been awhile since there has been a chicken update, so I thought it was time I shared a few new photos of some of the flock.


Ronnie the Roo.  So handsome and such a gentleman.


Lacy, one of the crazy twins.



Inquisitive Ginger.


Bobbie, the Head Hen.

It seems as though Ronnie might be having a bit of a sexual identity crisis.  Several times lately I have seen him go into a nest.  Today, when Sara Ashley and I were doing a little chicken house maintenance, we saw him go into the Kitty Litter Dome turned into nesting box, and decided we would see what he was doing.  Listen to his hen-like clucking.



John and Blake planted new potatoes this year......their first venture into potato farming.  Today they harvested the first tub full.......quite a nice haul.


We are looking forward to having some of them roasted on the grill.

GRATITUDES
An experiment that turns out in a positive way.
Chicken antics.
Much needed summer rain.

Take care,
Jennie

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The Garden Path

The paths in our garden leave a lot to be desired.  Now, don't think that I am not grateful for all that we have gotten done over the past two summers.  It really is truly remarkable.  I mean, take a look at 2010.


Three sad little beds on a plot of land scraped clean of all it's topsoil.....basically rocks and weeds.

And today......



That being said, the pathways between the beds basically still looked like the ground on the 2010 photo.  And by the end of the summer, with even our most valiant efforts, the weeds overtake the paths and make traversing them a snaky feeling proposition.  And weed eating threatens to destroy all of the plants spilling over from the beds.

So, last week "The Help" got to work.

Pathway before prepping the ground

Weeds and rocks removed.

Weed block paper in place. (This is where I helped.)

Mulched.

All compliments of "The Help"......proudly standing on their brand new pathways.....looking a little worse for the wear, but hey, it is so worth it.


What a great job!!!  Thanks, guys.  Now to finish the other half of the garden......just sayin'.

GRATITUDES
A garden's promise of summer bounty.
The rich smell of earth and mulch.
Chickens clucking happily in the background.

Take care,
Jennie

Monday, June 3, 2013

Rob

Not to be outdone by Christi, Rob recently had a really nice article about him published in Lifestyles Magazine, which I thought I would share.


Congratulations, Rob!!!

GRATITUDES
Great son in laws.
The first squash harvested from the garden.
The sleepy snores of old dogs doing what they do best.

Take care,
Jennie

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Sally Post Blocks 16 - 18


June's Sally Post blocks, numbers 16 - 18 are finished.  Trying to get a head start on what I need to get done this month.



Can't say that I am very fond of Block 18, but in the scheme of things, it will blend into the quilt.

GRATITUDES
The sharing of plants amongst gardeners.
Summer rain showers.

Take care,
Jennie

Saturday, June 1, 2013

June

It is difficult to comprehend that we are entering the sixth month of 2013.  In evaluating my project progress, I would say that I am on track.  More than expected, less than desired.......what can I say?  I always believe that I can achieve much more than I really can.  I have completed 31 projects thus far, of which 12 were UFOs.  Ideally, I would like to see more UFO finishes in the future months......at least in equal number to the new starts.  Many of the new starts were from stash, but some were new purchases.
Another goal for the remainder of the year will be to cut down on the number of new purchases.


Let's take a look at May.  There was absolutely no progress on the little Blackwork quilt, so it will go back onto the list for June.  The Albany Sampler and Checkerboard Rugs and Patiently Waiting Runner, all UFOs, were completed and I blogged about them previously.  Haven't touched the woven scarf.  The knit shawl only lacks about 10 rows being finished and I should easily accomplish that in June.  I did make some progress on the Lion and Lamb, but don't see myself finishing it before Caraway, as I had hoped.  Here is where I stand with it.  As you can see, I have filled in some more on the right hand side and top, but still have lots to go.


I worked on all of the BOMs except Primitive Garden.  I am working on getting Love Letters (Really, it is named Kisses From Your Beloved) into a top. 

The redwork My Family wallhanging can come off the list, as it is in flimsy stage now and ready to go to the longarmer next week. It will be added back in when it returns for binding.



Garden Baskets is up to date, and I have trimmed and set together the first nine blocks.  Just received Block Ten and have it prepped to stitch in June.


Here is the list for June.  There will, of course, be the class rug (that will be started at Caraway with Jeanne Benjamin the week of rug camp) to add, but I'll do that later.  Looking at this list, I am really thinking that accomplishing all of this is unadulterated optimism.......there is rug camp, Vacation Bible School at the church and gardening all to be done this month.  But I can always dream and strive and when all else fails, revise the list.


 GRATITUDES
Friends who understand when my brain is not in gear.
A quick nap on the porch swing.
Warm, homemade cinnamon rolls from the aforementioned friend.

Take care,
Jennie