Seeds

In the mornings before work and before it gets too warm outside I try to go on a bike ride and listen to a podcast (no worries, I ride my bike in a safe low traffic section of my neighborhood and always watch for cars). 

Recently I have discovered The RobCast by Rob Bell (robbell.com), a former pastor turned author, coach, speaker. His podcasts focuses on minimalism, spirituality and quality of life. I discovered him through The Minimalists.

There are to date 157 episodes of his podcast, and I started with episode #1 after hearing him speak on an episode of The Minimalists Podcast. Although his message is based on his spiritual beliefs and he does share biblical quotes, the topics discussed in his podcast are not limited to/designed to appeal only to those with Judeo-Christian beliefs.

In my opinion they would appeal any spiritual belief whether what you consider “The Divine” is based on a higher being(s), a prophet, nature, science, or what lies within you. He discusses what I feel are universal truths that he makes accessible sharing the kind of real life situations and challenges we all face. There is no “bible-thumping” in this podcast (which personally would turn me off immediately).

The RobCast is now part of my morning bike ride routine and I today listened to Episode #3 in which Rob Bell explores being grateful for having employment to feed yourself/your family; and discusses the idea of an inedible seed turning into something that nurtures you:

“(A) seed contains within it the potentiality to keep you alive. It contains latent life-force, present but unrealized possibilities…you place a seed in the earth and you bury it and it somehow become something else…as it arises from the earth in a new form it is from that particular new form…provides you with what you need to live.

A seed only becomes the thing it could become…its potentials are only realized when it is buried…it is in the dark..it is under the earth, it appears lost to your sight…it is in the moment in which the seed is most gone that is actually when it is undergoing the most radical necessary transformation for it to be something that could give you life…” – Rob Bell, The RobCast, Episode 3|Receipts

Listening to the passage above got me thinking about something I created but have not shared on blog that has to do with SEEDS.

But let’s back up for a moment…

As a general rule I stay away from politics and religion as topics of discussion on my blog. I want to always respect my readers that may have different views on these very sensitive subjects. These are very personal types of beliefs.

I do however make a point to have people in my life who have different spiritual and political beliefs than I do. I like to be exposed to ideas and viewpoints that differ from mine. It is a basic requirement though to be my friend that you do have same general values about treating others with respect (sorry raging misanthropes we cannot be friends, ha!).

It is for this reason (staying away from politics) that I have not shared something I created for a certain march on issues that are meaningful to me as a Woman and as a Person of Color.  I am feeling inspired to now share and here a banner I created, all about seeds:

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This banner is based on a Mexican proverb and the banner is currently in a national traveling exhibit called Still They Persist: Protest Art of the 2017 Women’s Marches. It is featured in a book about the exhibit by the same title.

I think what Rob Bell says about seeds in his RobCast #3 and the general theme of my banner, could translate to any situation in which you feel buried, without hope and things are the darkest. If you have planted seeds,  although it is dark, there might be a period of incredible transformation happening underground that and will eventually bloom into something beautiful.


Postscript

Speaking of seeds and thus nature, I am definitely taking a cue from nature as I slowly work on hand stitching the letters on my Lao Tzu quotes themed wallhanging. As I shared in yesterday’s post, The Backstitch and the End of Tangled Floss, I am finishing up a wallhanging from an appliqué class I took in 2016.

I am in the process of stitching:

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished” – Lao Tzu

And it is obvious I am not hurrying (ha) but I have completed THREE WORDS (a significant improvement from TWO LETTERS I shared yesterday!

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It is a peaceful meditative process to carefully stitch on words, I like it! I plan to knock out another word or two this evening.

(Which will happen first: the acorn will turn into the oak tree or I will finish stitching the saying onto the quilt?)

Thanks for reading my ramblings…

 

The Backstitch and the End of Tangled Floss

Inviting the Backstitch into my Repertoire

Continuing my theme of cleaning out the old UFOs (unfinished projects) from yesterday’s post, this weekend I also worked on an appliqué project that I began in a wonderful class a over year ago (Adventures in Appliqué). 

I made progress on this piece while attending the annual retreat with my Quilting Sisters in May 2017 (Quilt Retreat Inspiration and Projects):

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To finish this wallhanging size quilt top, I needed to embroider the words that go with the image using a “backstitch”:

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished” – Lao Tzu

Hopefully it is obvious (fingers crossed) that my wallhanging contains an acorn which eventually becomes a large oak tree in time.

The concept of the wallhanging is based on the African Themed Bible Verses appliqué quilt that students had the option of making in the class.

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Bible Verses Quilt by Ugandan Women, Sisters of the Heart Foundation, Sisters Coffee House during the 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show

I being the rebel, decided to use the words of an ancient Chinese philosopher as inspiration for my piece (also a rebel, I decided to make a smaller wallhanging with one block instead of a quilt with multiple blocks).

Although I have allegedly been quilting for 17+ years, sometimes I feel like a brand new quilter when I discover something else I do not know how to do: in order to stitch on the words, I needed to learn how to do the backstitch.

The wonderful instructor, Janet Storten (who is the Director of Sisters of the Heart Foundation) kindly offered to give me a refresher on the backstitch as she did cover it in her class (and I swear I did pay attention in class). I was tempted but I thought I would take a chance and try to learn the backstitch from YouTube.

YouTube is filled with awesome instructional crafting videos (and I have lost hours of time watching one right after the other). I discovered one by the talented crafter Lauren Fairweather:

As Janet had instructed in her appliqué class, I first lightly drew words in pencil on my fabric (see I did remember something). Following the video above, I slowly did my first backstitch letters!

This is another hand sewing meditative experience (slowing down and focusing appears good for the soul!)

In time I know I will get better, but here are photos of my progress so far (I had to put my work in a hoop to stabilize it until I get more experienced):

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So Tierney, you stitch on TWO letters and then post photos? Why yes, I am very proud of those two letters – ha! Of course when the whole top is finished I will post an updated photo.

A Tale of Tangled Threads

Actually a tale of tangled embroidery floss, but the words “embroidery floss” did not not provide the alliteration that “threads” did in the header to this section!

Last May when I took Janet’s class on Appliqué I discovered embroidery floss cards (Tierney – have you been quilting under a rock all these years, why do you not know about basic crafting items?!?!) Janet was kind enough to share some of her huge collection of embroidery floss cards with her students. She gave me this one that coordinated with my piece:

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I did not know such magical cards existed! I thought that she had discovered a mysterious and secret fountain of embroidery floss!

You see I have always purchased embroidery floss this way:

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Photo credit: Jo-Ann Fabrics and Crafts

And turned these nice little packages of embroidery floss into TANGLED MESSES.

Prior to learning to stitch with them, I used embroidery floss in various colors as the “string” to hold the chopstick on the miniature kimonos I make so they can become a wallhanging.

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Miniature Kimono by tierneycreates with red embroidery floss

Other crafters will likely cringe at this but I would just cut in the middle of a new package of embroidery floss in order to access a length of it for hanging the kimono. Then I would put the rest of the floss away in a small bag and it would turn into a tangled mess.

I would untangle the mess to try and cut more floss out for another kimono as needed.

Are you cringing, I mean really cringing? Do you want my “Crafter Card” revoked at this point?

Not able to find embroidery floss on these mysterious spool like cards, I just kept doing what I was doing until I discovered a large package of embroidery cards with floss and some EMPTY CARDS for $1.50 a couple of weeks ago at a thrift shop.

(Lightbulb)

So…you buy the cards and then you wind your embroidery floss onto the cards!

This weekend I sorted my thrift shop find into an old small plastic container with dividers and wound all my floss packages onto their own spool cards!

I went from this (note the tangled floss in small packages):

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To this:

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When I ran out of the cards I got from the thrift store bag, I used one of them as a template and created my own with some recycled cardboard.

Just think how much more basic quilting/crafting stuff I will learn in my next 17 years of quilting!

…let loose and HOWL

“Once in a while, you just have to let loose and HOWL” is one of the dog themed sayings on the wallhanging sized quilt I just finished on Saturday and hung in Terry the Quilting Husband’s (TTQH) studio (aka the Guest Room).

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No More Just Gathering Dust

My friend Lisa gave me dog themed wallhanging sized quilt top (unfinished quilt) a couple years ago. Since then it has in my closet (after sitting in hers) as an un-finished object (UFO), just gathering dust (yes quilters like to transfer their UFOs from one quilter to another to keep in storage at someone else’s house!).

Saturday I was rummaging through my UFOs and came across this quilt top; and spur of the moment decided to JUST FINISH IT.

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Lisa was very generous to give me this completed wallhanging quilt top. All I had to do in order to finish the quilt was to prepare the backing; machine quilt it; and bind it.

Recycled Batting

My friend Betty Anne who is a professional long-arm quilter has quilting batting leftovers from her customers’ quilts that the customers do not want. She saves some of the pieces for me to use for table runners or small projects. (I rarely buy package batting as for smaller pieces I have her discards and for larger quilts I get them professionally quilted which include the batting in the cost)

She also taught me how to piece smaller batting together to make a larger batting for a project – either by zig zagging the batting together or using a special tape to join them.

I did not have pieces of scrap batting to finish the dog themed wallhanging quilt. So I zig zagged two smaller pieces together:

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Favorite Saying?

Not only did I make the batting, quilt it and bind it all in one day, I also got it hung in TTQH’s sewing area (the entire Guest Room is dog…primarily schnauzer…themed)!

Summoning TTQH to the Guest Room…I mean his “studio”, to reveal the latest addition, I asked him which saying on the wallhanging was his favorite. He selected this one:

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Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer would be very pleased with this choice of sayings!

My favorite quote on the quilt is this one I already shared:

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I am feeling fairly pleased I got a craft project finished and hung in a day (okay, okay the quilt top was already made by another quilter, ha!).

Happy Howling!

 

Fundraiser Quilt and Good Omens

Quilting Sisters’ Charity Quilt

One of my Quilting Sisters (see posts Quilting Sisters, Part II and Quilting Sisters, Part I) is a breast cancer survivor and asked at this year’s annual Quilting Sister Retreat, if each of us would make two blocks for a fundraising charity quilt to raise money for breast cancer research.

The plan is to make different “star” blocks in blues and whites. This past weekend I worked on my blocks, made from the same block pattern from the Ladies’ Art Company Block Tool – Four X Star:

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Here are the completed blocks, I used the same “white on white” background fabric and different blues for the blocks:

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The blocks are “nothing to write home about” but I needed to get them done (because I had procrastinated working on the blocks) in time for the quilt to get assembled by my Quilting Sister who is pulling all together and having it quilted for the charity fundraising event.

I like the blocks better turned on point and I do not how the quilt will be set. I will try and remember to share a photo of the completed quilt in the future.

Good Omens

I just finished an exceptionally funny and irreverent audiobook – Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

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Photo credit: Amazon.com

The book is about heaven and hell screwing up the Apocalypse. It has two absolutely endearing characters, who are actually best friends, a bumbling angel Aziraphale and a demon Crowley (who actually secretly quite fond of humanity) who try to sabotage the Apocalypse.

The book is brilliantly narrated by Martin Jarvis who does an exceptional job with all the voices of the characters.

Filled with delightful bits and parodies of modern culture (well as modern as 1990 when it was published), I laughed so hard while trying to go on my daily walks that one time I actually stumbled! The authors obviously dislike telephone salespeople, tax accountants, and the fast food industry!

In addition it the awesome British humor and endless silly bits (The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are actually “Hell’s Angels” bikers!), some of them with “Monty Pythonesque” humor, the book has some wonderful insight on humanity’s foibles and how we should try and be better to each other. It also is filled with heart warming sweetness of how much goodness there actually is in the world.

There are many wonderful quotes in the book. Here is one I found on QuoteAddicts.com:

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Postscript

The kale in my garden is ready to use!

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Hello Kale, I would like to invite you into my belly

Even though summer has started, I made my one of my favorite stews for supper: Bean and Chicken Sausage Stew .

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Used fresh tomatoes instead of canned

With some crusty bread, we had a very tasty supper last night! Check out my repost from  November 2016, A Girl’s Gotta Eat (repost), if you would like links to some of other favorite recipes.

All the topics on this post seem rather random, so I will continue to be random, and share the cover of a blank journal my friend Susan recently gave me as a gift. It makes me smile:

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Cabbage Rose Quilting & Fabrics, Ft. Worth TX

During our recent trip to Fort Worth, Texas, Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I stopped at a Fort Worth area quilt shop – Cabbage Rose Quilting & Fabrics.

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It is a lovely quilt shop with a great selection of fabrics, excellent prices (and a very nice sale section) and friendly/helpful staff. I got to chat with the owner a very nice lady.

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All around the shop were sweet little vignettes, here is one with a miniature antique sewing machine in the window, that I thought was darling:

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Quilt Shop Family Reunion

What made the visit to this quilt shop very special was it was also the location of a mini Hogan family reunion!

We picked up TTQH’s quilter sisters Susan and Diane from the airport and headed directly to this quilt shop from the DFW airport. Terry’s eldest brother Andy and his wife (also a quilter) who live in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, met up with us at the quilt shop!

TTQH had not seen Andy in many years and they spent a long time chatting and catching up in the quilt shop while TTQH’s sisters, sister-in-law and myself shopped! I have some adorable photos of Terry and his big brother in the quilt shop (sorry many of my photos from the Cabbage Rose Quilting & Fabrics shop contain TTQH’s family members and to respect their privacy I have not posted those photos).

If you are ever in the Fort Worth area I highly recommend their shop. They also have a great website:

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A blog page: cabbagecorner.blogspot.com

And a facebook page: Cabbage Rose Quilt Shop

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Of course I bought something! I have to support local quilt shops when I am traveling! I was rather well-behaved and bought a couple of modern fabrics from the 1/2 yard precut sale bin:

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Postscript

Really Hungry, Willing to Take Chances

We took a red-eye (overnight) flight from Central Oregon to DFW (via a stop in Portland, Oregon) and arrived at 5:00 am in the morning. After waiting around a couple hours in the DFW airport rental car center (yes the airport is so huge the rental cars have their own HUGE complex off site from the airport) and picking up our rental car, we were tired and hungry.

We do not know the Dallas-Ft. Worth area and we could not check into our hotel in Ft. Worth until the afternoon, so we had to figure out stuff to do till then AND find some breakfast. (The rest of Terry’s family was not coming into town until Friday, which we did not realize until after we bought our plane tickets).

We stumbled upon a little “hole-in-the-wall” diner in strip mall and were so hungry we thought we would take our chance and try it – Mom’s Cafe:

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We had our finger crossed that “Mom” would not give us any gastrointestinal distress. Instead we were pleasantly surprised with EXCEPTIONAL Tex-Mex breakfasts!

I had an incredible plate of migas with tortillas for breakfast and TTQH had some type of breakfast burrito.

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We were very quiet while we ate as we were each having our own private moments of total-food-yumminess! “Mom” did good!

TTQH loves even more than quilting, historical war-gaming. After breakfast we found a Ft. Worth area miniature historical war-gaming shop before finally getting to our hotel and passing out.

Later that evening, we went to the Movie Tavern for dinner and a movie (we saw Guardians of the Galaxy 2, a very fun movie!). The next day, while visiting with Terry’s brother Andy, had worked on the building of this theater!

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Blogging Awards

Recently I have been honored with a couple more blogging awards (thank you so much One Creative Family and Dewey Hop) and I will do future blog posts about those but I am backlogged with other blog post topic ideas. I guess I have to try and do daily posts when I can to catch up with all the random stuff floating around in my head (smile).

Shameless Thrifting, Part II

Yesterday’s post featured a completed quilt to convince you that this is still a Quilter’s Blog, so now I am free today to post about some other non-quilting random topic!

This is post is a sort of follow up or continuation of my post from August 2016, Shameless Thrifting. In my “Shameless Thrifting” post I share how I overcame my aversion to thrift stores as part of my Minimalism Journey. I also share a secret obsession from my childhood discovered during an afternoon of thrifting.

Got Outfit?

In yesterday’s post (in which I try to convince you I am a quilter again), The Wedding Gift Quilt, I mention that I recent returned from a trip to Fort Worth, Texas for a family wedding.

Preparing for the trip I realized I did not have many nice warm weather outfits for Texas (90+ degrees F and high humidity).

I live in the Pacific NW and in general we dress fairly casual; and I am a telecommuter and I can work in sweat pants and a T-shirt all day. I used to have a lot of dressy clothes from when I worked in an office, but I donated most of them to thrift shops as I discussed in my series of posts on My Minimalism Journey (My Minimalism Journey).

I could not stand the idea of going out and buying NEW clothes. Anytime I think about buying new clothes, I think about an article I read last year on how “Fast Fashion” is creating environmental issues. This is not the exact article but it has the same message: Newsweek’s FAST FASHION IS CREATING AN ENVIRONMENTAL CRISIS

Several times I started to get into the car and go to the local Macy*s or J. Jill, or even Old Navy to see if I could find any cute outfits for the trip. I also thought of our local boutique shops and although I would like to patronize small businesses I was not sure if I wanted to pay their prices and I noticed many of their clothes are made in overseas.

Let’s Try Local Thrift Shops!

Thank goodness due to the influence of my sister, a very creative “thrifter” and my friend Betty Anne, I can proudly and shamelessly, go thrift shop shopping for clothes! There are many wonderful “gently used” fashionable clothes at thrift shops.

After visiting several thrift shops, I was able to put together a couple outfits for the trip I was very pleased with. Here is an example  of one of those outfits (note I already had the shoes – they are are Dankso dress clogs with ankle straps I’ve had for many years and they surprisingly matched perfectly):

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How much for the entire outfit including the jewelry (not including the shoes) – $9.

Yes $9 for the whole outfit: the $5 dress is a J. Crew dress, the $3 jacket is a boutique brand type item, and the coordinating necklace was $1. I received compliments on the outfit while on my trip!

And when I get tired of my “new” thrift shop summer travel wardrobe, I will just donate it back to the thrift shops!


Postscript

The Capsule Wardrobe

Speaking of clothing, a vlogger (video blogger), Casually Matthew, has a beautifully produced short video on how to create a Capsule Wardrobe:

I love the idea of a “Capsule Wardrobe” and first heard about this concept when I started following The Minimalists a couple years ago. I was going to add a link to provide more background on Capsule Wardrobes, but you can google this phrase and find many wonderful guides.

Essentially a Capsule Wardrobe is a way to declutter and minimize your closet while curating your clothing into a coordinated collection of clothing you really love; and is flexible in its ability to “mix and match”.

I have a fairly casual Capsule Wardrobe for my telecommuter/Pacific NW lifestyle but I would like to evolve it to be a tad more stylish and plan to use thrift shop finds to achieve my goal!


Feature photo credit: Roger Kirby, free images.com

The Wedding Gift Quilt

Ah, this is a blog about a Quilter’s Life.

Quilters allegedly make quilts.

So occasionally I should probably feature a quilt in one of my posts (smile).

We recently returned from a visit to Fort Worth, Texas for a wedding. Terry the Quilting Husband’s nephew got married to a lovely woman. I gave them a quilt as a wedding present.

I do not know what I was thinking, but I did not take the best photos of the actual quilt before shipping it off. So before you get to my photos, I want to show you the official image of the quilt by the quilt designer.

The pattern is called JOY and the pattern designer is Whirligig Designs. The finished quilt measures approximately 89″ x 106″.

The pattern photo:

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Photo credit: Stitch ‘N Time Fabrics

And now my photos…

I used batik fabrics similar to those used in the sample for the pattern photo. The quilt was quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe. Unfortunately I did not take any photos with the details of the quilting (or any photos with decent image quality, ha).

The newlywed recipients are currently on their honeymoon and perhaps at a later date I will ask them to take a better photo of the quilt and send to me. I am a pretty sure they did not take the quilt on the honeymoon with them!

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I made a nice quilt label for the back of the quilt and emphasized that the name of the pattern is “JOY” and wished them much joy in their life together. I sort of miss the quilt but they seemed pretty happy about it (I shipped it to them before the wedding) so I hope the quilt has a happy life the lovely couple who received it!

My wonderful Sisters-in-laws and Mother-in-law, who are also quilters, helped finance the creation of and professional long-arm quilting of this quilt. I included their names in the label. I was “assigned” to be the one to make the wedding quilt for the newly wedded!


Postscript

Normally I travel with a medium or large backpack. I am not a formal suitcase kind of person and I like to travel as light as possible. However since I was going to a wedding and needed to bring dressier clothes and shoes, I had to pull out the traditional rolling suitcase.

My rolling suitcase is a black suitcase and looks like the zillion other suitcases traveling through airports. One of my Quilting Sisters (see posts Quilting Sisters, Part I and Quilting Sisters, Part II) Lisa, gave me an awesome luggage tag that made my standard plain black rolling suitcase stand out:

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My suitcase was easily to locate in the crowd…and I felt like a “Bad *ss” when I picked it off the luggage cart!

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It’s Never Too Late to Say “Thank You”

Today we are traveling home from Fort Worth, Texas. Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH)’s nephew got married in a beautiful ceremony at the Hyder House in Fort Worth. I will have photos and stories to share in an upcoming post(s) about the Hyder House and a tour of a Fort Worth area quilt shop. I got to go fabric shopping with three of my awesome quilter sister-in-laws – 2 from NY and 1 from Texas!

TTQH and I are sitting in PDX (Portland airport) awaiting our plane to take us back to Central Oregon and I happened to check my e-mail. I discovered a recent e-mail from an Etsy customer that made my heart very warm and happy.

I made my tierneycreates Etsy shop inactive in late 2016, nearly 3 years after opening it in December 2013. I miss the interactions with customers but it was too much to keep up with as I work full time (and I would be very hungry if I tried to live off my Etsy shop). So I was very surprised when I had an e-mail on an Etsy Conversation (how Etsy customers communicate with Etsy sellers) from a sale in January 2015!

I used to collect special edition Barbies and the vintage ones I occasionally sold on Etsy. The sale that the customer was contacting me about occurred nearly a year and a half later ago and was for this Little Debbie Barbie:

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Here is what the customer said in her Etsy Conversation:

This is a long overdue thank you – the doll was beautiful and the woman who received it loved it. Her husband, who had passed away drove for Little Debbie and so this was a wonderful keepsake. Thanks again!

What a fantastic surprise – I have a huge smile on my face knowing that something that no longer brought me joy was able to bring someone else some major joy!

This was a great lesson that: It is NEVER TOO LATE to say THANK YOU!


Feature photo credit: LittleDebbie.com

Make Your Bed

If you have followed my blog for a while you know how much I love nonfiction “self-help” and “self improvement” genre audiobooks. The last couple of months I took a break from nonfiction and listened to several science fiction audiobooks – Cixin Liu’s The Three-Body Problem and The Dark Forest. These were excellent books/stories with excellent audiobook narrators, however I began to crave a little nonfiction audiobook in the mix.

I heard about the commencement speech by Naval Admiral William H. McRaven (retired) in which he shares life lessons from his Navy Seal training, beginning with “make you bed every morning”. When I saw my local library had his book on audiobook I had to reserve it.

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Photo credit: Amazon.com

10 Life Lessons from Basic SEAL Training

  1. If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.
  2. If you want to change the world, find someone to help you paddle.
  3. If you want to change the world, measure a person by the size of their heart, not the size of their flippers.
  4. If you want to change the world get over being a sugar cookie and keep moving forward.
  5. If you want to change the world, don’t be afraid of the circuses.
  6. If you want to change the world sometimes you have to slide down the obstacle head first.
  7. If you want to change the world, don’t back down from the sharks.
  8. If you want to change the world, you must be your very best in the darkest moment.
  9. If you want to change the world, start singing when you’re up to your neck in mud.
  10. If you want to change the world don’t ever, ever ring the bell.

Here is a link to the commencement speech he gave in 2014 at the University of Texas at Austin – University of Texas at Austin 2014 Commencement Address – Admiral William H. McRaven, in which he addresses these 10 life lessons. In his speech he gives a very abbreviated version of each lesson – in the book he really fleshes out the story behind each lesson in a very engaging manner.  At the end of the book he shares the original commencement speech that led to the book but for me it did not compare to the richness and depth of stories in the book providing the background to each of his life lessons.

One of my favorites of his life lessons is: “If you want to change the world get over being a sugar cookie and keep moving forward.” You will have to either read the book or watch the commencement speech to find out what he means by “sugar cookie”! I have so much respect for those who can endure Navy Seal training in order to serve our country. It seems impossibly grueling!

We already make our bed each morning, as it just looks better up, made but Admiral McRaven opened my eyes to the true power of making your bed each morning!

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Photo credit: Lars Jensen, freeimages.com


Postscript

My art quilt, Jiko’s Robe, is in a month long exhibit at QuiltWorks Gallery.  Here is a post about the show on our Improvisational Textiles blog: Jiko’s Robe at QuiltWorks Gallery June 2017.

I will do a future post with photos from the exhibit of the other Asian themed quilts.

 

Versatile Blogger Award

The tierneycreates blog has been honored with another blogging award (see post Thank You for the Blogging Awards). Thanks so much to Dewey Hop: Feisty Froggy Reads Through the Library for the nomination!

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The Dewey Hop/Feisty Froggy has accused the tierneycreates blog of being “versatile, informative, fun, and original“!

In order accept this award, I must list the rules (slightly altered by Dewey Hop/Feisty Froggy per her confession, ha) :

THE RULES:

  • You have to thank the person who nominated you and provide a link to their blog!
  • Nominate bloggers of your choice.
  • Link the nominees and inform them about their nomination.
  • Share some facts about yourself.

NOMINEES:

I  (like Dewey Hop/Feisty Froggy) will do my best to nominate people who really are versatile, informative, fun, and original. Bloggers, please don’t feel that you have to participate if you don’t want to, but you do deserve this honor whether you participate or not.

(NOTE: I would definitely have nominated Dewey Hop but then this would be a circular nomination, ha!)

I follow many wonderful blogs and for this nomination I tried to focus on those with a very wide ranges of topics and/or uniqueness.

SHARING SOME FACTS (QUITE RANDOM FACTS):

  1. I constantly listen to audiobooks. I am never without an audiobook queued on my iPhone and usually I have two audiobooks going at once. Currently I am listening to Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World by Admiral William McRaven (U.S Navy Retired), which I will discuss in a future post. 
  2. I love dogs’ noses. When not kissing the noses of my two rescue miniature schnauzers, I am admiring other dogs’ noses. Cats noses are pretty cool too.
  3. For most of my life (age 11 forward) I have loved horror films. Classic horror films (Frankenstein, Dracula, Wolf-man…anything with Christopher Lee or Bella Lugosi); haunted house horror films; slasher-films, Japanese-style horror (The Grudge, The Ring), and silly horror films (like Nightmare on Elm Street, etc.). Then, suddenly about 6 months ago, I stopped enjoying most horror films and stopped watching the genre (except for the occasional classic horror film). It just seemed like there was too much horror already in the real world, I did not want to watch fictional horror on film anymore.
  4. A couple years ago I had decided to become a runner without listening to my sister who said I needed to get orthotics and good sneakers. I ended up with Plantar Fasciitis and a Morton’s Neuroma on my feet and had to wear a walking boot for several months. After my rehabilitation, I now stick with walking. I never really appreciated my feet until they were not working very well. Now I treat them very well – custom orthotics, high quality sneakers and shoes, and daily foot exercises to avoid a return of Plantar Fasciitis (or have to get another one of those icky foot injections to treat the Morton’s Neuroma).
  5. Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I are craft brews/microbrews aficionados. I never liked beer until we lived in Seattle and we met people who introduced us to craft brewing. In 2004 we traveled to Amsterdam, Antwerp, Brussels and Denmark on a beer tasting and friend visiting vacation. During this trip,  TTQH, who is also a Military History buff specializing in the Napoleonic Era, got to see Waterloo. This was definitely one of those “Bucket List” items for TTQH. To get to Waterloo battleground and museums, we traveled from Brussels via train and then bus; and I had to pull out my very rusty high school French to get the last leg of the journey to Waterloo (no one spoke English on the local bus)!
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Lion’s Mound, Waterloo (Photo Credit: European Traveler)

Thanks again to Dewey Hop/Feisty Froggy at Dewey Hop: Feisty Froggy Reads Through the Library for nominating tierneycreates: a fusion of textiles & smiles.

Quilt Retreat Inspiration and Projects

2 weeks ago today, at this time, I was on a bus back to Central Oregon after a relaxing 4 day/3 night quilting retreat at Sew N Go Retreats.

So I think I better finish up my series of posts on the 2017 annual quilt retreat I attended with my Quilting Sisters. I have a backlog of other blog posts ideas in my head and unless I finish this series I will not get to them.

If you are starting here, below are the links to the previous four posts in this series:

Relaxation Can Lead to Inspiration

For me it was a mellow and laid back quilt retreat experience. I did not even bring my sewing machine, only hand sewing projects. I did not drive, I took the bus (see post The Road to Retreat (via Bus!).

And, I spent a bit of time here, instead of in the quilt retreat center:

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My special “quilting retreat seating”

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I can see the quilting retreat center from here, does that count?

Looking at this:

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Hello, impossibly blue sky with a couple fluffy clouds over Portland, Oregon region

Or this:

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Hello, beautiful sunset!

I also spent a lot of time going on walks (see post Quilt Retreat Animals) and found inspiration in nature, surrounding farms, and a stump with moss and fungi! (see post The Beauty of Moss and Fungi):

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Area farm

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Lovely little shed, tree and old bike vignette discovered on a walk

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The infamous NW slug

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The beauty of moss and fungi

Sewing did actually occur, primarily by my quilting retreat sisters, however I have a couple projects to report.

Quilting Sisters’ Projects

Before they were projects, they were this nest of sewing machine, fabric, patterns and supplies! (one of my quilting sister’s stations):

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Here is a montage of the projects the other quilt retreat attendees worked on:

One of my quilting sisters was working on a project she found on Pinterest and reverse engineered how to do it (she is mighty crafty!) The project involves scrappy log cabin piecing of roses, set in scrappy pieced green log cabins:

I got a kick out her workstation as she worked on the quilt, it was highly organized with scraps of various colors:

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Inspired by Others

One of my quilting sisters worked on this quilt, with a lovely collection of bee themed fabric:

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The fabric line of the fabric with the printed designs is Bee Inspired by Deb Strain for Moda Fabrics and it was very darling:

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Photo credit: Moda fabrics

She gave me her scraps, which I turned into English Paper Pieced (EPP) hexagons during the retreat:

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I had so much fun trying to “fussy cut” the scraps into hexagons with specific images. I have many more hexagons to make before this can become a future project; and I will do a future blog post on this project (like in 2018 when I get to working on these again?!?!).

The same quilting sister was working on another project that I got to benefit from, this time on an even larger scale. She brought several “UFOs” (unfinished objects) including one from a class she took many years ago involving a mixture of embroidered blocks and non embroidered blocks. She did not select the fabric for the class it was part of the class kit. Now revisiting it, years later, she was not sure she liked the fabric or the design of the quilt:

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Small sampling of the blocks, not all blocks put up on wall

The fabric did not match her home decor and she did not have someone in mind to make the quilt for as a gift. I offered to take it off her hands and she gave me the blocks already made and all the remaining fabric/scraps.

Now it has become a “Challenge Bag” (see post Basket of Challenges) and I will feature it in a future post when I finish redesigning it into a different piece:

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Challenge Bag added to the “basket of challenges”, hoping to become a quilt someday

Tierney’s Projects?

So Tierney, besides fleecing one of your quilting sisters for her scraps and even an entire project, did you work on anything??!?!

Why yes I did. I worked on my stack of EPP rosettes (getting the rows between each hexagon sewn together:

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And I worked on an appliqué wallhanging that I started in a class in 2016 (see post Adventures in Appliqué):

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I really enjoyed blanket stitching and the more I practice the better I get (at least in my mind). Blanket stitching and other hand stitching is very relaxing and even meditative.

I might be tied with another quilt sister (she knows who she is) for the title of “Least Productive” but I had an incredible and relaxing time. The quilting sister who shared my lack of productivity was also the one going on wonderful walks including the one in which a local farm invited us over for a visit!

Inspiration All Around the Quilt Retreat Center

The Sew N Go retreat now has two classrooms: 1) the original retreat center/classroom which is a separate building on the farm property; and 2) a brand new classroom which is the converted garage to the main quilt retreat house.

Throughout the quilt retreat house and in both classrooms are many quilts, quilted wallhanging and little sewn projects. Below is a montage of some of the inspiration that surrounds you while you are quilt retreating:

Nancy, the quilt retreat hostess, did a demo on how to make a gift wine bag from a pair of old jeans:

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In addition to quilted/sewn inspirations, there are also wood crafting inspirations (Nancy also holds class in her barn on making wood working crafts):

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She also had a very creative way to display Lori Holt’s Farm Girl Vintage blocks (one of my other someday to finish projects, see series of posts  Farm Girl Vintage Blocks)

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I did have material for a Postscript section but this has been a very long post and I am sure you are exhausted now from slogging through all these photos (but maybe you are inspired to go create something!)

Thanks for joining me as I recapped the annual May quilting retreat with my quilting sisters. For me this year’s retreat was a very laid back. There was no “Floor Show” this year or stand up comedy (see post Quilt Retreat May 2016: The Tools & The Stories) but it was still exquisite to hang out with my quilting sisters and enjoy the beautiful Vancouver, WA countryside.

I did learn about a “new tool” for quilters at the retreat and I will close this post with the adorable information I found on this tool posted on the edge of one of the design walls at retreat:

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Special thank you to Quilting Sisters Lisa and Kathy on providing additional photos for this post.