Monday, March 30, 2015

Make-A-List Monday - Spring Break Week!

Hi, all!

Where did last week go?  It seems like it just flew by.  I spent a good bit of time with Emmy, because my daughter reminded me that it would be her last week before she starts daily preschool!  Oh my - where did THAT time go?  I mean, wouldn't you want to spend as much time as possible with this face?

One of a series of selfies taken by Emmy herself!

So I didn't get as much done last week as I expected - but let's see just what did get done...

1.  Finish the commission quilt top, and quilt it if the backing fabric arrives in time.
Done!  I love the way this little quilt came out - I'll be sharing more pictures after the recipient's birthday!

2.  Make a pillow top as an upcoming blog hop sample.
Done!  Come back Friday to see more about the book I'll be reviewing... (and there's a giveaway!)

3.  Order the fabric for Emmy's quilt.
Done!  And it arrived today.  One really cool thing about this fabric - it's a Hawthorne Threads exclusive, and they had the fat quarter bundle printed on the fabric, so they only have to cut a piece of yardage for you to receive all the fat quarters in a color way.  Isn't that smart?

4.  Clean up the guest room so it's ready for two little girls to stay with Nana and Papa while their parents are in China (soon soon soon!)
I did not get to this one yet - good thing they're not going this week! But I've still got a little bit of time on this, so no worries.

5.  Assemble two coat racks we bought at IKEA.
Done!  Here's a pic of one of them, sitting in a spot where we've needed a coat rack for a long time!

6.  Set up an office space for my husband to use at home (since I stole his man cave when I got my long arm!)
I didn't get to this one yet - but it's on my schedule for this week!

7.  Finish a beautiful antique crazy quilt for a photographer friend of mine.
I haven't finished this one yet, because I still need to get some supplies for the repair.

8.  Quilt at least one quilt for the ministry.
Done!  Here's a pic between washer and dryer, the best I can do right now.  But this quilt was amazing to quilt - so many tiny seams, appliqués and places where seams met, but it quilted like a single layer of fabric!   I'll share more pictures of this quilt later.

8.  Keep up with any quilt ministry needs that arise.
Done!  This quilt went to a woman who was diagnosed with breast cancer for the third time...

This one is now comforting a gentleman who went in for a heart bypass, but the surgery could not be completed because of scar tissue from previous surgeries...

This quilt went all the way to Boston, to a woman who had a recurrence of cancer after seventeen years...

and this one went to a 15 year old girl in Europe who was diagnosed with bilateral kidney cancer.

In other crafty things completed this week, I also made this cute skirt for Emmy for her third birthday...

Now I've just got to find a shirt to go with it!

So, I got to some of the things on last week's list, but missed out on a few.  I've got a bit more time this week, because it's spring break and the girls are spending some extra time with mom and dad, so here's what's on tap for this week...

1.  Clean up the guest room so it's ready for the girls to stay when their parents go to get Nathanael.

2.  Set up a home office space for my hubby.

3.  Write the book review blogpost.

4.  Write the "Meet The Sponsors" H2H blogpost. (This one always takes a bit of time to pull together...)

5.  Cut out Emmy's bed quilt.

6.  Finish two orphan block flimsies for the quilt ministry.

7.  Repair the antique crazy quilt for my friend.

8.  Keep up with all ministry needs that arise.

Hopefully I'll be able to get to all of this - it's a lot, but there's always more that can be done if I manage to finish this stuff!  Not enough hours in the day....

So now the question is - - - what are YOU working on this week?



Sunday, March 29, 2015

Hands2Help - Tips, Tutes & Tasty Things!

Hi, all!

Hands2Help 2015 is off to a great start - we currently have 77 people signed up!  That is awesome!!  And if you've just found out about the party, there's still time to join in - so please leave a comment below if you want to participate!  Not only can you get that rush of good feeling that comes from making a quilt that will share a quilt-y hug with someone in need, there are prizes too!  You can read more about the Challenge by clicking on the Page tab above this post.  

This week is one of my favorite weeks in the H2H schedule - it's time for you to share your favorite sewing tips, quilt tutorials, and/or great recipes!  After all, you can never have enough of any of those things, right?  Feel free to share any or all in a post and link them up below.  You can also link up to someone else's post if you prefer, particularly to share a tutorial, or link directly to the tutorial in your own post.

So here's my sewing tip!  I saw this on Facebook this week, and was totally blown away by how simple and useful it is!  Take one of these...

Put it over the arm of your sewing machine...

Adjust it to the seam width you want...

And voila!  A guide for your seam allowance!  I need to do this on all the machines at church - so much neater than painter's tape!

And here's my favorite go-to quick recipe for supper - 

I usually use less garlic than this recipe calls for, and sometimes I will brown up some sweet Italian sausage and add it in after the pasta cooks.  Yum!!  Takes about a half hour from start to serve.  Add some crispy artisan bread warmed in the oven while you cook the pasta, and you've got a great meal!

And for my tutorial, I'll refer you back to the Sweet Sixteen quilt-along tutorials - one each on my Sunday night posts from January 18th to March 8th.  There's lots of variety there, and most work up pretty quickly!  I think this one was my personal favorite...

So now it's your turn!  What will you share with us?  We can't wait to see!  Be sure to take some time to check out the links and see what your fellow H2H-ers have to share, too!!

And be sure to check back next Sunday, when we'll "Meet The Sponsors"!  You'll be introduced to some of our sponsors, and see what wonderful prizes will be given away at the end of the Challenge!



PS - just a bit of housekeeping!  I still need mailing addresses for a few of you - Karen Lambert (also need a correct email address for you, Karen!), Kathy Decker, and Shauna Trueblood.  Please email me directly at salliesue57 (at) gmail (dot) com with your info!  Thanks!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? Finally Finished... And Another Start!

Hi, all!

It's Friday again, and spring has fled from Middle Tennessee - but it's still time to get our whoop whoop on! Are you ready?  

I'm sure you feel like you've seen this quilt in progress forever... but I'm so happy to say it's finally finished!

The pattern is To The Point by Cluck Cluck Sew.  

The fabrics are a mix of Cotton & Steel, Doe, some Connecting Threads basics, and Kona snow for the background.  My daughter hand picked each fabric for this quilt!

It has scrappy binding made up of the leftover bits of fabric from the triangles.

The backing is another Kona fabric, I think indigo, but I can't swear to that, along with some leftover half rectangle triangle blocks from the front.  The quilting, done with white Glide, really shows up nicely on the back!  I did straight line quilting 1/4 inch inside the white triangles on my tabletop machine, then loaded it onto the quilt frame to do the random meander on all the white triangles.  The borders are also straight line quilted, forming a grid in each corner.

And here it is in place on Nathanael's bed!  The time is getting close for him to come home - the Article 5 letter, which was the last document needed by the Chinese government before issuing the travel approval, was delivered to them Thursday morning!  So we should know for sure when they will be going sometime in the next two weeks....

And another work in progress this week...

This pretty top!  Next week I should be able to show it to you completely finished.  I can't wait!

So - - - can I get a whoop whoop?


And now it's your turn!  

What have you been working on this week?

What's got you dancing the happy dance?

Share - we want to dance right along with you!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight - 

Hope to see you there!!



PS - don't forget to stop by on Sunday and link up your favorite quilting tip, quilt tutorial, or yummy recipe! I just found a great new tip I can't wait to share!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Make-A-List, the Tuesday Version!

Hi, all!

Welcome to Make-A-List, the Tuesday version!  Unfortunately, I fell asleep last night while writing this post, so it just had to wait until this morning to be finished and posted.  Springtime is so tiring!  All those cleaning urges...  it's hard work to resist them!!

Let's see how last week's list went...

1.  Finish preparing for and host the bunco night fundraiser.
Done!  It went well, and I'm happy to say that it should be the last fundraiser we have to do.  It's getting very close to time to go get that little boy!

2.  Spray baste and quilt Nathanael's quilt.
Not only basted and quilted, but completely finished and on his bed!  Isn't it gorgeous?  More pics on Friday...

3.  Order fabric for Emmy's new bed quilt.
I haven't managed to do this yet - some problems working out the fabric requirements for what my daughter wants - but hopefully this week!

4.  Start cutting out the commission quilt.
Not only cut out, but the center is sewn together!

5.  Contact all the folks who signed up for H2H.
Done - whew!!!  By the way, if you're reading this and you haven't sent me your address yet, please drop me at line at salliesue57 (at) gmail (dot) com!!  And there's still time to join in the fun, for those of you who have been sitting on the side of the pool trying to decide if you want to get your feet wet this year....  ;-)

6.  ........... taxes.................  ;-(
Done!  Since I was late with this post anyway, I decided to do them this morning so I could mark this as completed!!  Woohoo!!!

7.  Keep up with any ministry needs that arise.
Done!  Here are the quilts we gave away this week...

This quilt went to a gentleman undergoing some major health issues....

This quilt went to a high school student who suffered a brain bleed and is presently in a coma in the hospital...

This quilt went to a gentleman who was just diagnosed with colon cancer...

This quilt went to a woman who had her leg amputated...

This quilt went to a wheelchair-bound woman who was just diagnosed with cancer and will be at a local hospital for quite a while for treatment...

And this quilt went to a young woman who just had her third brain surgery in a month.

Whew!  Busy week!

OK, so not too bad - especially since I held my week over until Tuesday morning!  (So glad those taxes are out of the way for another year!)  Let's see what's on tap for this week...

1.  Finish the commission quilt top, and quilt it if the backing fabric arrives in time.

2.  Make a pillow top as an upcoming blog hop sample.

3.  Order the fabric for Emmy's quilt.

4.  Clean up the guest room so it's ready for two little girls to stay with Nana and Papa while their parents are in China (soon soon soon!)

5.  Assemble two coat racks we bought at IKEA.

6.  Set up an office space for my husband to use at home (since I stole his man cave when I got my long arm!)

7.  Finish a beautiful antique crazy quilt for a photographer friend of mine.

8.  Quilt at least one quilt for the ministry.

8.  Keep up with any quilt ministry needs that arise.

Wow, that's really a mixed bag!  Plenty to keep me busy, though...

And just to keep it real, I want to share a "fail" that happened this week...

I started with this pretty block - nice straight edges, right?

But after quilting - not so straight!  So disappointing - but I'll just turn it into a pillow for my own sofa and pretend I don't see it!  And it's back to the drawing board for this project.....

OK!  So now, the question is...  what are YOU working on this week?



Sunday, March 22, 2015

Hands2Help - Sign-up Giveaway Winner!

Hi, all!

Wow!  I am absolutely blown away by the response so far to the Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge 2015!!  Already, 60 people have signed up!  At least six of them are from Canada, which is great considering we only had one Canadian last year.  One is from the UK, a first for the Challenge.  And the rest of you cover the US, from the northeast to Florida, Texas to California to the northwest!  I love seeing how this Challenge involves quilters from all over the world - it just goes to show that quilters care!

And so many of you did such wonderful blog posts to help promote the Challenge!  I absolutely love reading about why you join the Challenge each year - it makes my heart happy!  

Now I know you are just dying to know who won the sign-up giveaway.  But first, let's give a shout out to our sponsor for this particular phase of the Challenge - Fabrics N Quilts!  

Shannon runs a lovely on-line shop with a wide array of fabrics, notions, books - pretty much anything you might need for quilting!  And if you have the good luck to go to a show where she has a booth, she carries some really neat gift items, too.  Her brick-and-mortar shop has long been on my list of places I'd like to visit - it's located fairly close to me, but too far away to try to visit with a toddler in tow.  Someday, though!  She also has a featured called the Deal of the Day - which is currently a bunch of quilt patterns for only $2!  

Shannon is providing a $35 gift certificate for the winner of the sign-up giveaway!  And now it's time to let you know who that is...

Congratulations, Linda Swanekamp!!

Linda, I'll hook you up with Shannon via e-mail so watch for it!

And just a reminder, for all the rest of you - Shannon is offering free shipping to all the Hands2Help participants for the duration of the Challenge.  The code is in the email I sent out to each of you.

Now, a little housekeeping - if for some reason you didn't receive an email from me with the calendar and coupon codes, please email me at  And if you haven't sent me your snail mail address, please send that to me now!

And if you missed the initial sign-up period, don't worry - there's still time to get in on the action!  And there will be more giveaways at the end of the Challenge - so join in the fun!  Just leave a comment here and I'll get you on the list.  And I've just been made aware this week that sometimes WordPress bloggers have a hard time leaving comments, so if you are having that problem, feel free to email me directly at

Are you looking forward to the next couple of months?  I know I am!  I can't wait to see the wonderful quilts you all create, and hear what our guest bloggers have to share with us. But next week is for you - there will be a linky party where you can share your favorite quilting tip, quilt tutorial, or recipe for something tasty!  You don't have to write a new post if you don't want to - you can link to an old post, or even to someone else's post!  If you don't link to your own post, though, put your name in the description of the link so we'll know who it's from.

So now, to paraphrase what my youngest granddaughter Emmy says....



Friday, March 20, 2015

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? Some Little Whoops..

Hi, all!

How quickly the week passes!  It's already Friday, and you know what that means - it's time to get our whoop whoop on!  Are you ready?  

Unfortunately, I didn't quite manage to finish Nathanael's quilt this week - it's still lacking the binding - but I did finish the quilting today...

I started with some straight line quilting on the diagonals...

Then I did dense 1/4" straight lines on the borders...

And this morning I loaded it on the quilt frame for some random meandering in the white triangles!

And here's what the back looks like with all that stitching!  I wasn't expecting such a cool effect - nice surprise!

And here's a few other little things I'm whooping about this week... Cinderella with my favorite eldest granddaughter...

...a new fort for my adorable youngest granddaughter from IKEA...

...and my very first experience with making my own baklava!!

And a very happy whoop whoop - we've already had over fifty people sign up for this year's Hands2Help Challenge!  There's still time to sign up and get in the running for the signup giveaway - a $35 gift certificate to Fabrics N Quilts!  Just click here and check the ways to enter at the end of the post!  The time to enter to be eligible for the giveaway ends Saturday at midnight.

So all in all it was a fun week, and hopefully I'll get Nathanael's quilt finished today!  Can I get a whoop whoop?


And now it's your turn! 

What are you excited about this week?

What's got you dancing the happy dance?   

Share!  We want to dance along with you!

And it's always more fun to dance with friends!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight.

Hope to see you there!