Thursday, December 30, 2010

Batiks are beautiful

Last evening I finished "Friendship's Ribbons," a comfort quilt for a colleague. The batik "ribbon star" blocks were contributed by other librarians.  It is 47 x 53.

Signature squares pieced into the quilt back

When I pulled out batik fabrics for the blocks that I made I found a stack of 6" 9-patch blocks.  I put them up on the design wall and they became this 40 x 52 quilt, which is finished (including both horizontal and vertical hanging sleeves).

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

RCTQ Christmas memories

Look what I found when I repacked the "Christmas gift wrap and package trims" box this morning.
I received these from an exchange by members of RCTQ (the Usenet newsgroup rec.crafts.textiles.quilting, now a Google group) in 1999.  [Straw stars: Elke Painke; angel: Karen Hood; beaded snowflake: Judy Fearn; snowman: Donna Crompton; tree: Ally Fiddy; heart: Judy Christensen; holly: Stephanie Scales; Santa: Gen Henderson.]  I have no recollection what I contributed!

Dead Dog Creek Ravine, December

Here's the monthly ravine photo, taken about 2 p.m. on Tuesday.  We had a light, gentle snowfall on Saturday night/Sunday morning (December 25/26) -- about 8".     (By comparison: see this post.)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Thursday, December 23, 2010

RRCB: a mystery indeed

How will all of these units fit into one quilt?  Bonnie Hunter is the only one who knows!
I have managed to keep up with the weekly clues for Bonnie's "Roll Roll Cotton Boll" mystery--the most recent of which involved *600* half-square triangles. 

It started easily enough....
Matched pairs...pinwheels, perhaps?

60-string-pieced squares in "light neutrals"

Squares are simple!

600 half-square triangles! Not hard, but oh-so-fiddly.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Dead Dog Creek Ravine, November

I posted  last month  that I'd like to document Dead Dog Creek Ravine each month of the year.    Here are photos that I took this afternoon, just four weeks later.   

Christmas Crafting

The cottage-building boom (see this post)  didn't end with the 84 blocks made for the library and AAUW raffle quilts.  I made the "scrappy house" block in a smaller version (60 of them, to be precise) for Christmas ornaments for the library staff and trustees. 

The ornaments are 5" square.  They have batting but they're not quilted.

I made nine draft-stoppers for this year's crafted gifts.  They measure 32" x 6", with a 3.5" base. The blocks are string-pieced, 6.5" unfinished.  The draft-stoppers are weighted with cardboard tubes filled with kitty litter.  (The tubes are from rolled gift wrap, $2.99 each at T.J. Maxx and Marshalls--a better buy than mailing tubes from the office-supply store ($4.95 each).)  Stuffing them used up the remains of a once-ginormous bag of polyester fiberfill that I bought at BoSal foam in Scarborough, Maine, in the early 1990's, in the days when I made needlepoint pillows.   

I used a different Christmas fabric for each one.

And I have some left over blocks to play with!

Daisies in November

Some purchases are irresistible. 
These Mikasa dessert plates were $2.00 at the Salvation Army store.

Friday, November 5, 2010

And the winning word....

Last evening was the 5th Annual Community Spelling Bee to benefit CREW

The trophy comes back to ZBPL.
There were 18 three-person teams to start.  At the end it was ZBPL and Zion Park District.  In the 10th round we got "malapropos." They got "energumenen."  No one had heard of that one!   (It means "possessed by a demon.") 

And ZBPL won the prize for the best cheering squad! 
The fans were the planners' idea

Nervous?  Not us!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Dead Dog Creek Ravine, end of October

Dead Dog Creek Ravine is at the end of our block.  It's beautiful at any time of year.  Yesterday was the first time I'd remembered to take my camera.  (New resolution:  I will try to do so each month to record seasonal changes.)

Entry to the ravine from our street
The creek

Saturday, October 30, 2010


As I mentioned earlier, this summer we had a vegetable garden. It was the first since we've been in this house (2003).  Because I planted it late I just grabbed seed packets at the nursery so we had nice string beans and snow peas, TREMENDOUS cucumbers, and slow-growing carrots. The basil, sage, and mint (all from setting plants) were lush.  There were four different kinds of tomatoes, planted WAY too close, but oh, so abundant!  Delicious in salads and out-of-hand.  The freezer is stocked with tomato sauce and many packets of pesto.

The first frost was a couple of days ago, so Stevens pulled out the tomato vines and dug up the carrots. I made a green tomato pie yesterday and there's a green tomato cake in the oven now.

A bounty of green tomatoes!

There were a few almost-red tomatoes left.  The basil had been nipped by the cold.

Slow-growing but soooo sweet.

And next summer?  We're going to enlarge the garden plot!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Another finish Nine Patch and Blue

It's funny how a quilt with no destination and no deadline can come together quickly and without angst.  That's the case with "Nine Patch and Blue," which I began a week ago (October 17) and finished last evening. 

Most of the 272 mini 9-patches (3" finished) came from the occasional exchanges of the online  Block Swappers.   The fabric for the setting, border, and back came from my stash.  The back is a vintage cheater pattern from the late 60's/early 70's-- 36" wide -- made by VIP, I think.  I did simple straight-line quilting.  The quilt is 88 x 88.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Christmas Cottages II

This is the second Christmas Cottages quilt.  It will be raffled by the Friends of the Library.  Barb C., one of the library staff, contributed blocks to add to those I made.  There were five blocks extra and I pieced them into the back. I quilted it with a meandering pattern in the center, parallel zigzags in the inner border, and holly leaves in the outer border.    ( Click this to see the first quilt, which AAUW is raffling.)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

October in northeasternmost Illinois

It's Columbus Day weekend. What better way to commemorate it than by going to the.....beach?   (The water was warm enough to wade in.) 

All photos taken at Camp Logan (North Unit, Illinois Beach State Park) about a mile and half from our house.

And one piece of beach glass for my recently-started collection.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A final sunrise

Taken at the ferry dock the day we left the Magdalens

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Just a few photos from our trip

Green Gables (SWH in red sweater)

Kitchen, Green Gables

Old Harry Beach

Acadian Flag, Havre-Aubert



Madelinot symbol: clothes on the line in the breeze!

Interior, St. Peter's-by-the-Sea ("Old Harry Church")