The Library Stack

It’s been a while since I’ve posted my latest library stack like in my series of posts The Library Stack . Why? Because I took a break from “library stacks” and limited myself to one book at a time or actually reading books/periodical from my own stash!

But I could not stay away from my beloved library stack from my beloved public library, and yesterday I picked up a new stack:

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The first book I am working through is Quilt As-You-Go Made Vintage by Jera Brandwig – a Pacific NW Authors (she lives in Seattle where I used to live!)

I discovered this book in the Non-Fiction New Releases section (first place I check out when headed upstairs at the library). Borrowing this is perfect timing, as my friend and quilting mentor Wendy H. has been advising me on how Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I can do “quilt-as-you-go” on the king-size quilt TTQH is currently working on. This book lays out three methods for quilt as-you-go in a very easy format.

I am tempted to buy the book but I am trying to take a break from adding any more books to my obscene craft book collection (I have an old post about my craft book collection, Craft Book Hoarder?!?!?, but maybe someday I will do an updated post of the current levels of craft book obsession..).

TTQH continues to work on his quilt on my sewing machine and Mike continues to keep him company in the chair in my sewing room!

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Art & Fear, etc.

I am feeling stuck. I have two looming deadlines for art quilts for two upcoming shows and I have not started either pieces.

I am dealing with feeling stuck in two ways: 1) reading an inspirational book; and 2) sewing some traditional blocks.

Inspirational Book

At the January meeting of the art quilting group I belong to (Central Oregon SAQA) our group leader shared that she was reading Art & Fear: Observations On The Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking (1993) by David Bayles and Ted Orland.

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Image credit: Amazon.com

After the meeting, I immediately reserved the book at my public library and just picked in up from the library on Friday. Diving into this awesome book I discovered a couple great quotes about the reality of creating/making art:

“Making art is dangerous and revealing. Making art precipitates self-doubt, stirring deep waters that lay between what you know you should be, and what you fear you might be.”

“…fears arise in those entirely appropriate (and frequently occurring) moments when vision races ahead of execution. Consider the story of a young student…who began piano studies with a Master. After a few months’ practice (the student) lamented to his teacher ‘but I can hear the music so much better in my head than I can get out of my fingers’. To which the Master replied, ‘What makes you think that ever changes?'”

“The materials of art…seduce us with their potential.”  

(This last quote made me think of stumbling upon that incredible textile that you know will be perfect in a future piece)

I am only on page 20 and so far there are many gems in this book. Currently I highly recommend it if you are struggling with creating art or moving forward on your artistic journey.

At the beginning of this post I mentioned I have not started two art quilts with looming deadlines. I have actually designed and mapped out both pieces on paper but have not begun to the process of transferring my vision to fabric. That is where I am stuck (likely because of fear).

Stitching Myself Unstuck

I knew I needed to do something to become “unstuck” but I could not force myself to start working on either art quilt when I am not feeling inspired. I could however get myself in a creating mood by sewing something.

So I pulled out my bag of scraps from working on Farm Girl Vintage blocks (see series of posts Farm Girl Vintage Blocks)

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and made a couple more blocks:

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These blocks are about as far as you can get from art quilting but they got me sewing again and it was fun to try to be limited by what was in the scrap bag (from Farm Girl Vintage blocks already made).

I will likely make a couple more blocks and then I will do a post showing all my completed Farm Girl Vintage blocks to date.

I will continue reading the Art & Fear book and look at starting my art quilts.

Have you ever felt creatively stuck and what do you do to get “unstuck”?


Postscript

A follow up to my previous post Spinning the Homespuns with TTQH, Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) has moved into my sewing studio to work on his piece.

We have decided to sell his Baby Lock sewing machine and he is going to use my Bernina. I can better support him on technical issues if he is using the same brand of machine (I can trouble shoot my Bernina in my sleep).

Plus he likes working in my sewing area, it has a better set up with my latest room rearrangement.

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Mike the Mini Schnauzer: “Now he will sew in here all the time?!?!?”

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TTQH enjoying the small design wall on the closet door right behind the sewing area

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TTQH working on his piece


Featured image: Dave Dyet, free images.com

Spinning the Homespuns with TTQH

This is a follow up to the post Slashing the Stash with TTQH.

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) is ready to make another quilt and this time he wants to make a quilt for our bed – and we have a king-size bed.

He has an ambitious plan, after raiding my stash of homespun fabrics (brushed cotton fabrics woven in a primitive home style weave, usually in plaids) for a very large quilt!

He discovered this book, Slash Your Stash Quilts, while I was thinning out my quilt booklets in November. I had this one slated for donation but he wanted to keep it and make the Twinklers pattern with homespuns in my stash (he was actually trying to slash my stash!).

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We reviewed the original pattern he chose in depth which led to him changing his mind. He is going to make another pattern in the book that does not have all those “points”:

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I helped him cut 225 6.5″ x 6.5″ squares and he has sorted them into 25 nine patch sets:

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Here he is playing (spinning) with some designs with the pile-o-homespuns on the large design wall in the hallway:

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And they now are waiting by his sewing machine for him to start sewing…

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More updates as the quilt progresses…


Postscript

A quick follow up on the post Additional on “Additional Conversations” .

Originally I was going to hand quilt my large art quilt from recycled clothing, Additional Conversations:

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I decided to “quilt it by check” and have my friend Betty Anne, professional long-arm quilter, do the quilting.

Here is the quilt laid out on the bed as I try to make sure I made the quilt back wide enough (using tan colored Peppered Cotton).

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Betty Anne and I discussed an overall strategy for her quilting on the piece and I cannot wait to see her wonderful work!

An Unexpected Treat

I could not decide what to title this post. I started with “An Unexpected Surprise” but that sounded redundant as “surprises” are “unexpected”. Next title idea as “A Surprise Treat”. Finally I went with “An Unexpected Treat”. (Blog post naming, one of the great struggles in my world…)

This afternoon I attended our Central Oregon SAQA (Art quilters) group. A very awesome SAQA member, Marion, gave me a belated holiday gift – a stash of fabrics!

She wrapped the stash very sweetly in the Japanese fabric wrapping style with a handmade braided fabric ribbon. I opened it in front of her but I have attempted (poorly) to rewrap it to give you a feel of how it looked when she presented to me:

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A very subpar re-creation of a once beautifully fabric wrapped gift

Inside was a stack of fabric scraps, fat quarters and yardage:

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Yummy stack!

Here is what the gift looks like laid out:

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Yummy pile!

Did Marion randomly give me fabric from her stash? No. The story behind this is a while back one of the SAQA members who lives in Portland, Elizabeth, who is a prolific art quilter, was thinning her immense fabric stash. She posted to our Oregon SAQA facebook group that any SAQA member in the Portland area could drop and take away a haul of beautiful fabrics on a specific date.

Portland is a 4 hour drive for me and as much as I love free beautiful fabric selected by talented art quilters, an 8+ hour road trip was a bit much for free fabric.

What I did not realize is that Marion, who has a good feel for my taste in fabric, was picking me up a surprise stash!

It was a very thoughtful surprise!


Postscript

I so enjoyed the comments on my previous post, Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls, Continued, and so did Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH).

Believe it or not, he actually returned to my sewing area today (with a gentle suggestion) and worked on a couple more feet of the coil for the fabric baskets/bowls.

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He’s back!

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This time Mike the Mini Schnauzer settles into the chair in my studio to monitor TTQH

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Is Mike comfortably napping or fretting over when this whole TTQH sewing abuse will be over?

Now that we were getting some serious length on completed coil, we needed to do something to keep it organized and accessible (instead of become a twisted mess) for when it was time to make the fabric bowls. So I started wrapping it around an old piece of cardboard (I save cardboard from calendars, etc. to use as a surface when making cards, etc.):

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Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls, Continued

This post is an addendum to yesterday’s post Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls and contains a rare photo of Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) who usually avoids being photographed for my tierneycreates posts!

Alright, this is going to appear like major husband abuse, but somehow I convinced TTQH to work on tedious sewing the coil of batik strips and clothesline required as prep to eventually make more fabric bowls.

I set it all up on my machine, provided training, and he got to work!

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After a while, Mike the miniature schnauzer came in the room to check on him and witness the abuse:

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Mike: “What is she making you do?!?!?”

Mike gave me the “furry eye ball” for putting TTQH through such tedium!

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Mike: “I want to extract him from this room and bring him back to snuggle with me on the sofa”

TTQH finished about 12 – 15 feet of coil and then took a break for an underdetermined amount of time (though he promises to return to it in the future):

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I did take TTQH out to dinner to his favorite brewery this evening, so this makes up for the tedious task as well as upcoming tedium!


Postscript

I love real rainbows, they make me smile.

Our winter has been surprisingly mild in Central Oregon so far and last week we had rain instead of snow. We seem to always get rainbows after a rainstorm here and I took a couple photos while on a neighborhood walk.

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Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls

This is a follow up to my 12/30/17 post “Throwing Pottery” on the Sewing Machine in which I shared images from making this fabric bowl from batik strips sewn onto clothesline:

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In the post I mentioned that I do not make a lot of these baskets because the preparation to make these baskets is so time consuming.

Recently I was cleaning out old projects and found the start of a prep for another set of fabric bowls. I thought: “what the heck, let’s finish up the prep and maybe make some more bowls”.  This time I enlisted the help of Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) to help me with the prep.

Below I will share a summarized overview of the cumbersome prep and where I currently am on my journey to make more fabric baskets.

It Starts with Strips

The pattern I originally used, Bali Boxes pattern by Aunties Two, appears to have been designed/inspired by the famous (and addicting) Hoffman Bali Pops. I know not everyone reading this blog is a quilter, so let me share an image of the packages of 42 pre-cut 2.5″ color coordinated/themed batik fabric strips:

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image from eBay, photographer unknown

Did any of you who are quilters, get addicted to collecting sets of Bali Pops when they came out in the 2000s? Hoffman still makes them but for me the novelty wore off (as did the novelty of buying “jelly rolls” which are another configuration of 42 2.5″ coordinating fabric strips).

I still have 3 – 4 Bali Pops leftover from my Bali Pop days; and all the fabric baskets and bowls I have made are from Hoffman Bali Pop sets. One set actually makes a couple baskets – 2 or more depending on how deep you make each basket. I am thinking I could get 3 bowls out of a Bali Pop.

I do not know the name of the Bali Pop I am currently using (they all have cute names for their color combinations like “Green Tea” and “Citrus Grove”) but I think it had to something to do with the ocean as you can see the colors are blues and greens.

The Tedious Steps Begin

This post is not intended to discourage you from making a covered clothesline fabric bowl or basket, but I want to show that a bit of patience with tedious tasks is required to make these items via the Bali Boxes pattern method.

First you have to sew forty-two (42), 2.5″ strips which each measure 44″ long, end to end. Do the math – that is one mega long strip you are creating. Not accounting for all the 1/4″ seams you are creating sewing end to end, 42″ x 44″ = 1848 inches, or 154 feet (46.94 meters).

After that is done, you have to fold each strip in half and then fold into itself again, to create a pocket/tunnel to nestle the clothesline.

Now for the steps above, this time I enlisted (or would this be considered “abused”) TTQH. He amazingly created this ball of batik strips after much work:

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It is a large ball and tightly wound/packed. I am amazed at his patience to do this for me, especially to double fold like 140+ feet of sewn strips (I used some quick and suspicious math to subtract 42 quarter inch seams).

Creating the Coil

I am on the last part of the prep to make fabric bowls/baskets – and it is equally as tedious. I have to stitch cotton clothesline into the center of the 140+ feet of sewn strips to create the coil.

But first I had to decide what coordinating thread to use, so I put together some options:

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I let TTQH select the thread (he likes to make design choices like that) since he did all that work to create the “Ball-o-Batiks” for me. Here is the thread he selected from the options above:

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After winding coordinating bobbins (making a basket or bowl on the sewing machine used a lot of bobbin thread) I was ready to start making the coil on my sewing machine:

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I set the ball of clothesline and the “Ball-o-Batiks” on the floor side to side as I work them together through the sewing machine:

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Here is what I have finished so far, not very much but I plan to work on it at a leisurely pace:

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2 feet down, 138 feet more to go…

I will share a photo of my progress in a future post.


Postscript

In yesterday’s post, Oh Scrap!, I mentioned that I had moved the fabric scraps from their organization in color themed boxes to a large bag. Well after completing this process I also ended up re-arranging my tiny sewing room again and thought I would share a photo:

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I’ve added this photo as an update to my page tierneycreates Studio Tour, where you can see a tour of my entire studio.

Although I could use the space for something else, I always try to find a way to keep my old futon chair (it coverts to a bed for a very small person) in my studio to always have a cozy place to sit and think (about my next studio reorganization project, ha!)

“Field Testing” a TTQH Quilt

Welcome to another entry in the Terry the Quilting Husband (aka “TTQH”) series of tierneycreates blog posts.

TTQH got his latest quilt – Flannel Fishing  – back from the long-arm quilter and “field tested” it on Sunday (I was a nice wife and put the binding on for him, then laundered and put the quilt in the dryer to make it super yummy). He was joined by professional quilt field testers – Sassy and Mike (our miniature schnauzers).

The “field” was the living room sofa and the test involved falling asleep in the quilt while watching Sunday afternoon football.

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Sassy, TTQH and Mike

As you can see above, I accidentally woke up Sassy and Mike from their snuggly flannel dreams when I took photos.

Mike was able to quickly fall back asleep under the quilt nestled behind TTQH:

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His eyes might appear open but he was passed out cold

TTQH is not into being photographed for the blog, you will just have to trust me he is field testing the quilt on the sofa (hey maybe he is Witness Protection, you never know…)

The fabric for the quilt was purchased during Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop earlier this year and you can read more about this quilt in the 07/06/17 post Update: Terry the Quilting Husband.

The long-arm quilter was not quite sure what do with it. It is a very busy quilt. She ended up doing a meandering stitch.

TTQH stitched together a bunch of flannel squares (9″ I think) of fishing and hunting themed fabrics he liked to create the quilt. The quilt was originally all PRINTS and I delicately suggested (I did not want to interfere with his creativity) that he add some solid flannels from my stash to help tone down all the prints:

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Hey TTQH likes the design and it is his quilt 😉

I pieced the back of the quilt for him from an old collection of outdoorsy mountain wildlife fabric panels and kit I had collected 10+ years ago and never used – but it worked for the back of the quilt:

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TTQH is very pleased with the quilt (and it provided a great nap during field testing).

The quilt joins the other TTQH flannel quilts strewn about the living room for the Central Oregon late Fall to Winter (to early Spring) season. In the evening we each grab a TTQH flannel quilt and start nesting!

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If you are curious, TTQH doesn’t just make flannel quilts for himself – his very first flannel quilt he sent to his Mom and he has also made on for his sister Diane. He made his sister Susan a non-flannel quilt.

Slashing the Stash with TTQH

In case you are curious what Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) is up to, he is going to be “Slashing my Stash” of homespuns (fabric).

Recently I pulled from a bookcase a stack of quilting books and booklets that I have neglected for years. The plan was to donate any book I could not find at least one pattern in the book I would definitely make.

TTQH was eyeing the stack of old quilting books for donation I assembled, so I asked him if he wanted to flip through the pile and see if he wanted to make any quilts from books in this pile.

He pulled out this book: Slash your Stash Quilts: 8 Recipes to Reduce Your Stash by Leisure Arts/Designs by Claudia Plett.

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He showed me the pattern for the quilt he wanted to make – Twinklers.

The version of the Twinklers quilt depicted in the book was made from homespuns; and I realized I have a whole stash of homespuns in my fabric stash that I have not played with for years. So I pulled out all my homespuns and laid them before TTQH for his quilt “fabric shopping”!

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He currently has the entire stash of homespuns in his sewing area and I will share an update on his progress in a future post. I plan to help him with the pattern as it has a couple new techniques for him.

TTQH’s recently finished quilt is with the long-arm quilter right now – below are photos of the fishing themed flannel quilt top and the nap TTQH and the dogs took under his completed quilt top:

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In between working on quilts he has helped me with English Paper Piecing (EPP) and I will share my questionable EPP-husband-abuse in a future post in my Adventures in English Paper Piecing series.

I am quite excited he is “slashing my stash”!


Postscript

If you are new to my blog, just a heads up that I have two additional affiliated blogs:

 

 

Deschutes County Fair

A couple weekends ago we went to the Deschutes County Fair (Deschutes County Fair & Rodeo) and this is a belated post to share some photos from the Fair.

The Deschutes County Fair is allegedly (according to their website) Oregon’s largest county fair and rodeo. We have attended a couple of times, and honestly we are always a little underwhelmed.

This could because we used to live in Seattle, WA and each year would go to the more impressive Pullayup Fair (Washington State Fair) or because we used to live in Houston, TX and would attend the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.  So perhaps the bar was set a little high on what we expect from a Fair/Livestock Show/Rodeo.

Lured by the Promise of “Carnival Eats”

We would have passed on the Deschutes County Fair this year, but Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) got hooked on a show on the Cooking Channel called Carnival Eats.

Basically Carnival Eats is an extreme “food porn” show featuring the NAUGHTIEST fair/carnival food ever (we are talking bacon burgers stuffed with cheese set in a glazed Krispy Kreme donut bun) around the country. Some of the carnival food shown on the show makes you gasp and you imagine if you had one glorious bite you would just immediately drop dead of a heart attack from an extreme coronary blockage by fat. But you would die with a smile on your face!

TTQH and I in general eat fairly healthy but after binge watching a couple of the show with Terry, I thought it would be fun this year to go to the Deschutes County Fair and have one very naughty carnival food experience.

Alas, there was only the standard Fair/Carnival food at the Deschutes Country Fair (corn dogs, friend twinkies, elephant ears). Below is a photo of the most exciting offering they had, and we passed on it, It was just not naughty enough to spend the calories on:

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Wandering Around the Fair

Our coronary arteries probably thanked us, but we gave up on hopes of any naughty food experiences, grabbed a lemonade and wandered around the Fair. Here are some photos from the day.

The Livestock

The livestock was owned/managed by the adorable 4H and FFA (Future Farmers of America) kids. One kids asked me if I wanted to meet her goat,  how could I refuse?

The 4H or FFA kids had posted The Six Pillars of Character:

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The Quilts

What would a county fair be without the craft section? First here is a sampling of some the quilts:

And they had a room in which you could watch women hand quilt in various modified versions of quilting circles!

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The Fiber Arts

The also had knitting and weaving displays and juried winners:

The Rides (that there was no way in heck I was going on)

In case the signs were not enough to keep me away:

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Then the rides themselves accomplished that objective:

Yes, I am a wimp, and proud of it! (smile)

Leaving the Fair

Upon leaving the fair, I asked TTQH if he was less likely to eat meat after meeting all those farm animals. He replied: “That was very cute bacon and if I knew it’s name I would personally thank it while having breakfast”.

No vegetarianism in TTQH’s future!


Postscript

Returning to what originally drew us to the fair – the promise of naughty fair food, I looked around the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo’s website and discovered they had a list of their Fair Food – 2017 Carnival Food

Now, look at these delicacies we did not have access to at the Deschutes County Fair:

  • Flaming Hot Cheetos Roaster Corn & Flaming Hot Cheetos Corn in Cup
  • Nutella Funnel Cake & Oreo Churros with filling
  • Flaming Hot Cheetos Pizza
  • Deep Fried Tim Tams & Deep Fried Chocolate Covered Marshmallows
  • Bacon Nutella Pickle, Pickled Cheese-on-a-Stick, & Shrimp and Pickle Basket
  • Pork Chop-on-a-stick, Loaded Baked Potato Bites & Deep Fried Nachos

So right now your mouth is either watering or your stomach is turning!

We ended up having a nice late lunch after the fair at a local brewery.

Update: Terry the Quilting Husband

So unless you live in Barrow, Alaska (1300 miles south of the North Pole/320 miles north of the Arctic Circle), you are probably not thinking about flannel, much less daydreaming of wrapping yourself in a flannel quilt right now.

We are currently sweltering in Central Oregon right but I am still going to share an update on Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH)’s latest quilt top: A flannel fishing themed quilt:

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He actually finished it a couple weeks ago but I am just now getting around to posting about it.

If you check out my 04/30/17 post  Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop 2017 you will see the fabric TTQH purchased during shop hop.

He finished the quilt top in late May when we happened to have some cool days, and I found him and our miniature schnauzers taking a nap under his new quilt top (the “cuteness factor” was very high when I walked into the room and I had to tip toe out and grab my camera!):

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He has not worked on the back for the quilt as it is kind of warm right now to even think about looking at flannel in our fabric stash much less touching it. We might just put the top away for now until the weather gets out of the 90s and we can start to think about flannel quilts again.


Postscript

With the warmer weather TTQH is working on other things in his spare time besides flannel quilts – like taking Mike, one of our rescued miniature schnauzers on a bike ride. We have two doggy backpacks and Sassy rides with me (the girls together) and Mike rides with Terry. The photo below is from a week ago when we had a break from the heat as Terry and Mike head out on their bike ride:

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If you would like to see more photos of Mike (and Sassy) bike riding, see these posts on Sassy’s Schnauzer Snips blog:

…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!

 

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).

Adventures in English Paper Piecing (Part III)

A recent post in a blog I follow, Coloring Outside the Lines (quiltingismything. wordpress.com), on English Paper Piecing (EPP) – “EPP – my tips and what I use” by Kris R., reminded me I should post an update on my adventures in EPP.

You can read my prior post, Adventures in English Paper Piecing (Part II), or you can check out my category Adventures in English Paper Piecing, for all previous posts related to my adventures in EPP.

Not sure if I would use the word addiction…but..

I started making EPP hexagons (aka “hexies”) to have something to do with my hands, other than play games on my iPad, while I watched TV in the evening with Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH). I seem to need to do something while watching TV, my mind is unable to just “veg-out” in front of a screen.

And EPP hexies I did make…and make…and make. I have made over 225 EPP hexies so far!

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So many hexies!

The fabrics are from the 2016 Central Oregon Shop Hop – a collection of fat 1/8th that TTQH and I got as gifts from each quilt shop we visited.

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The original collection of free fabrics

I used up all the fat 1/8ths (all 14 pieces) to make the 225+ hexies and then TTQH suggested I might need some white hexies in my grouping as some of the prints also have white in them. At first I was annoyed, as I wanted to be done with this collection of hexies and move onto making my next collection!

After a little grumbling, I realized he was right, and found this white fabric in my general fat quarter stash that I think will work:

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Making More Hexies

Now you might find this to be abusive, but I have trained TTQH to make my paper templates for my hexies. As mentioned in an earlier post on EPP, I found at a craft store, a paper punch that makes hexagons.

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TTQH making hexies with the paper punch

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A nice new pile of hexies!

TTQH likes a challenge and I caught him playing a game to see just how many hexies he could get out of a section of card stock. (I have a lot of card stock from my paper crafting days…I might return to make handmade cards someday…maybe…)

So what am I going to do with my first collection of hexies?

I fell in love with the EPP quilt on the cover of a new magazine, Quiltfolk:

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Photo credit: quiltfolk.com

I plan to make my EPP hexies into rosettes and make a quilt similar to the one on the cover.

The premiere issue of this advertisement-free publication features the state of Oregon and stories of quilters and quilt shops in Oregon.

The premiere issue of Quiltfolk magazine (01) goes on a road-trip around Oregon and when they get to Central Oregon, they feature a very talented art quilter, Shelia Finzer, who is in the SAQA art quilter group I belong.

Shelia and her art represented Central Oregon very well – this place (and Portland, Oregon) is a major nest of art quilters!

I know, I know, you are thinking: “Tierney, didn’t you post a while back about downsizing? Why are you buying more magazines?” I am not just downsizing my life to live as an extreme minimalist. I am CURATING my life to have only those things that truly make me happy. Quiltfolk magazine is one of those items.

The next issues (02) Quiltfolk magazine features quilter stories from the state of Iowa and I am looking forward to delving into that issue with a pot of tea!

The EPP Nest

I created a spot for my EPP activities (and any other portable crafting activities such as coloring or appliqué, etc.) in the living room in an old IKEA end table. Inside the end table are various crafting supplies for “crafting on demand” – ha!

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This is a continuation of my “whole house crafting” expansion that I discussed in the Jan 2016 post, Whole House Crafting,  when I realized that I did not have to confine my crafting activities to one room (3rd bedroom turned studio) in my house!

Well today is Monday, and I am going to try and get in another Pilot Butte walk, so I better stop blogging and go enjoy the sunshine and mountains.

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Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop 2017

Friday, a day after returning from our Oregon Roadtrip, Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I hit the road again – this time for the annual Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop.

We visited all seven (7) Central Oregon quilt shops in order to fill out our shop-hop passcards for a chance to win a dream Bernina sewing machine (and gift certificates to the local shops).

As much as I enjoy the annual quilt shop hop, I did offer to pass on it this year as TTQH had just done all that driving. But he insisted – he wanted to go and wanted to complete our shop-hop passcards (he likes a challenge).

Here are the seven (7) shops we visited:

Several of these shops were featured on previous posts. I have added a new Category for my posts – “Quilt Shop Tours” in case you want to find quilt shop photo tours I have posted (check out “My Topics” Menu).

Quilt Shop Hop is always fun: you run into the same people shop-hopping in the same order as you are; the quilt shops have tasty treats and one even served lunch; and you get to look at the wonderful displays and fabrics at each shop.

In addition, each shop you visit gives you a free fat 1/8th of fabric. Between TTQH and myself, we collected 14 fat 1/8ths. Here is the haul (note, I let TTQH select his own fat 1/8th and he went rogue and selected a black & grey one that did not match the rest of the brights palette!):

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Several fabrics are duplicates because we accidentally selected the same fat 1/8ths!

Last year I took our collection of fat 1/8th from the 2016 Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop and turned them into English Paper Piecing (EPP) hexagons (see post Adventures in English Paper Piecing, Part II). I plan to use the collection of fat 1/8ths from the 2017 shop hop for a project, this time I am thinking a standard paper piecing project.

I would like to use these free fabrics in a challenge project each year. I was intimidated by the thought of doing of EPP and now I absolutely love it!

I am completely aghast at the idea of traditional paper piecing (my sister-in-law Sue, the master quilter, once showed me how to do it as did my first quilting instructor Roxanne Carter, but it still fills my heart with terror), so why not challenge myself again?

So I nicely pressed and organized the 2017 free fat 1/8th in preparation for a future project:

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I did not buy anything at shop hop, but TTQH did! He decided he wanted to make a flannel fishing themed quilt (he is into fly fishing). Also he could not resist a couple animal themed prints. Here is his haul:

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For the fishing themed flannel quilt

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For his “stash” I guess…

Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer and her adopted brother Mike went on the road with us during Central Oregon Quilt Shop Hop. We stopped for a nice lunch and lots of dog walks. Material Girl Fabrics in Redmond, Oregon is in a house in a quaint old neighborhood so we had a really nice long dog walk before heading into that quilt shop.

Here is Sassy on the road:

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Sassy has to sit on my lap in the front seat for the best views

Here is a sampling of the lovely Central Oregon views as we traveled around the area shop hopping!

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I would guess we did about a 100+ miles of driving on Friday; for example the distance between some of the farthest quilt shops (from my house) – Homestead Quilts in LaPine, Oregon and the Quilt Shack in Prineville, Oregon is 65 miles.


Postscript

In a future post I will feature more Central Oregon quilt shop photo tours.

If you enjoy quilt shop virtual tours, I highly recommend Anna of Woolie Mammoth’s YouTube channel – Quilt Roadies. She, her husband and their adorable dog, travel in their RV to quilt shops around the country as well as other interesting sights!

WWII: The High Desert Home Front

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) is a military history buff and yesterday we went to see the exhibit “WWII: The High Desert Home Front” at the High Desert Museum.2017-02-25_12-52-16_242

This is exhibit, with many items donated by Oregon WWII veterans or their families, according the the exhibit’s page, “reveals the wartime activities that took place in the High Desert, including some of the most celebrated and tragic chapters in our country’s history”.

This exhibit honors those who served, those who gave the “ultimate sacrifice”, women workers during WWII, efforts by various ethic groups, the dark times of Japanese internment camps, and the development of and decision to drop the atomic bomb.

I took a zillion photos of this excellent exhibit and I thought I would share some of my favorites. (TTQH was in his element quietly wandering around this exhibit reading and looking at everything in awe and respect).

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The Vehicles

WWII Harley Davidson and Army Jeep

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The Uniforms

Of course being a nurse I had to include the Red Cross Volunteer uniform!

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Women and WWII

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I do not want World War to be a reason but I think more of us need our own “Victory Gardens” growing our own vegetables:

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Contributions by Specific Ethnic Groups

Native American, African American, and Mexican American (keep in mind this was the 1940s a much different America than we are now…)

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Japanese American Internment

A dark time in American history, hopefully we never forget.

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(and finally) The Beginning of the Atomic Age

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Postscript

After viewing the WWII: The High Desert Homefront, we needed something lighter before leaving the museum. So went wandered the rest of the museum and enjoyed some lighter “visual fare”:

Prehistoric Buzz Saw Sharks (Helicoprion)

Hysterical T-Shirt in the Gift Shop 

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A little High Desert humor!

Our Beloved High Desert Raptors

I enjoyed visiting with the museum volunteer holding the raptor in falconry style. We discussed Helen Macdonald’s book – H is for Hawk and the beautiful story of how falconry with a goshawk helps a woman deal with the loss of her beloved father. I listened to the audiobook and I thought it I was listening to beautiful poetry.

Looking through the Raptor exhibit made me think back to a weekend afternoon early last Fall. On a beautiful Central Oregon day with endless blue sky and a few fluffy cloud meandering across the sky, I took a “mini-vacation” in my backyard lying on a lounger and staring meditatively at the sky.

Suddenly my view appeared partially obscured by a large flying reptilian object and I thought for a moment I was in a scene from the movie Jurassic Park. No, it was not a Pterodactyl, it was one of our Central Oregon raptors, flying very low (likely it had spotted something tasty in a backyard…). As I had been intensively and hypnotically staring at the sky the object appeared larger than actual!

The whole moment took my breath away for a second. I guess if you are going to be eaten by a Pterodactyl at least have it happen after a relaxing afternoon…

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Image credit: dinosaurpictures.org


So there were so many more photos but I had to stop somewhere with my photo sharing. Thanks for virtually joining me at the High Desert Museum!

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Cozy Quilt and Audiobook Delights

Cozy Quilt Completion

Terry the Quilting Husband got his cozy flannel quilt back from the long-arm quilter and finally we have put the denim binding on (I say “we” because Terry sewed the binding strips together but I sewed them down on the quilt as he hates that part!) and completed the quilt.

Here is Terry under the quilt (he does not like his photo posted, and no, he is not in a witness protection program):

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Somewhere under this cozy flannel quilt is a male quilter…

A close up of the denim binding (Terry’s idea) and the pieced :

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Pieced flannel back and binding

Here is the chair with the quilt “sans Terry”. This chair is actually my favorite chair for reading in front of the window, but Terry has hijacked it and has his quilt and his book (Military History not crafting) in my spot:

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Not sure if there are enough quilts in this corner…

Terry selected the fabric (a fat quarter stack of Woolies flannel), designed the quilt, and pieced the quilt…and assembled the binding then handed it off to his wife to sew onto the quilted quilt!


Non-Stop Self-Help Audiobook Listening

Those of you who have followed my blog for a while know of my obsession with self-help audiobooks. I do try and sprinkle a little fiction into my book consumption whether it be a Neil Gaiman audiobook or my recent read (via a hardback book!) of Paula Hawkin’s The Girl on the Train (which I really liked, it was a page turner, but the main character did irritate me…).

Recently from my local library, I have listened to three “self-help” genre audiobooks back to back:

  • Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living by Shauna Niequist
  • The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life by Mark Manson
  • Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life by Susan David

I am still reading/listening to Emotional Agility and it might end up being one of my most favorite “self-improvement”/”self-help” audiobooks of all time. It is narrated by the author who has a lovely South African accent (early in the book she shared some of the horrors witnessed growing up in South Africa during the Apartheid and how they influenced her; she now lives in the US).

I greatly enjoyed The Subtle Art… and it was not about being indifferent or becoming a sociopath – it was about embracing your life struggles and viewing your struggles from a different perspective. The book also focused on deciding what is important to you in life, based on your values, and focusing your energies there instead of getting lost in the meaningless details in life.

I gave up halfway through the book Present Over Perfect as I found the narrator and the book sort of tedious and repetitious; however the author did make some good points and perhaps I would have enjoyed it better as a print book.

Here are some quotes from each of the books that I found inspirational:

Present Over Perfect (Shauna Niequist)

“What kills a soul? Exhaustion, secret keeping, image management. And what brings a soul back from the dead? Honesty, connection, grace”

“How we live matters, and what you choose to own will shape your life, whether you choose to admit it or not. Let’s live lightly, freely, courageously, surrounded only by what brings joy, simplicity, and beauty.”

“But you can’t have yes without no. Another way to say it: if you’re not careful with your yeses, you start to say no to some very important things without even realizing it. In my rampant yes-yes-yes-ing, I said no, without intending to, to rest, to peace, to groundedness, to listening, to deep and slow connection, built over years instead of moments.”

The Subtle Art… (Mark Manson)

“We suffer for the simple reason that suffering is biologically useful. It is nature’s preferred agent for inspiring change. We have evolved to always live with a certain degree of dissatisfaction and insecurity, because it’s the mildly dissatisfied and insecure creature that’s going to do the most work to innovate and survive.”

“Who you are is defined by what you’re willing to struggle for.”

“We are so materially well off, yet so psychologically tormented in so many low-level and shallow ways. People relinquish all responsibility, demanding that society cater to their feelings and sensibilities. People hold on to arbitrary certainties and try to enforce them on others, often violently, in the name of some made-up righteous cause. People, high on a sense of false superiority, fall into inaction and lethargy for fear of trying something worthwhile and failing at it.”

Emotional Agility (Susan David)

“People frequently die in fires or crash landings because they try to escape through the same door they used when they entered.”

“Your Values will bring you freedom from Social Comparisons.”

“Bottling and brooding are short-term emotional aspirin we reach for, yet these habits don’t deal with what’s causing our distress.”

There is a great transcription of an interview with Susan David by the University of Pennsylvania’s The Wharton School’s website: How Achieving Emotional Agility Can Help You — at Work and in Life.

This quote by Susan David from the interview sums up the theme of this wonderful book:

“(Emotional Agility is) the ability to be able to be with your thoughts, your emotions and your stories. We all have thousands of these every day in a way that enables us not to be derailed by them, but rather brings us intentionally and with purpose towards what we value in our live.”

I keep thinking I will eventually tire of or just get completely sick of “self-help” books but then I stumble across a couple of gems like The Subtle Art… and Emotional Agility!


Postscript

I backup my photos on Google Photos and occasionally it will automatically add a special effect to one of my photos that I can choose to save or discard (not affecting the original photo). Here are two photos that were first featured on the 01/15/17 post Creative Inspiration: Winter Trees that Google added special effects.

I wanted to share these photos as they look really cool (well at least to me):

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Material Girl Fabrics

Wanna go fabric shopping with me? Shall we wander around a quilt shop together?

Yes, yes, I know that unless I was to fly you all to Central Oregon (and that could get really expensive when it comes to bringing my readers in Australia over to Oregon…), our only option is to virtually go fabric shopping together!

Today I will to take you one of our wonderful Central Oregon Quilt Shops – Material Girl Fabrics in Redmond, Oregon.

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2017-01-21_15-16-23_447.jpegTerry the Quilting Husband and I met a couple friends for brunch today in Redmond and then headed for a wander about Material Girl Fabrics. The wonderful owner Leslie was having a quiet afternoon when we arrived (because of the weather/snow), though it picked up while we were there. Luckily before it go busier, we did get time to visit with Leslie who always makes her visitors feel welcome.

The quilt shop is very sweet – it is inside a former house and it is very cozy!

Let’s start our wander around this shop together:

General Photos

(Click on a photo to open a slideshow)

A Sweet Little Play Area

Tucked away in the shop is a sweet little play area for small children among the juvenile themed prints:

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The Kitchen!

As I mentioned, the quilt shop is a former house, and has a functioning kitchen which also serves as the counter/cash register area:

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Fabric Purchases

I was well behaved and I bought a remnant piece of gold Asian fabric. One of my friends, Susan, bought a nice little stash of fabric and was quite pleased with her purchase:

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Material Girl Fabric may be considered a “smaller quilt shop” but it is very well curated. There are many high quality delicious quilting fabrics inside the cozy house.

For those of you familiar with the Row by Row Experience, where quilt shops around the US offer an annual free pattern of a row for a quilt (usually themed for their shop), here is the Material Girl Fabrics’ Row by Row:

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Thanks for virtually wandering around the quilt shop with me! (If you would like to check out the our other lovely Central Oregon shops, I have links to all the shops in the right sidebar of my blog.)


Postscript

Terry the Quilting Husband got his most recent quilt back from the long-arm quilter, Betty Anne Guadalupe, today. This quilt was discussed in the 11/20/16 post Terry the Quilting Husband – Update.

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Usually I am a “nice wife” and I trim the excessive batting and backing off the quilt, but this evening I let him do it himself. He wants to put a denim border on it and I am trying to figure out if I have some light weight denim in my stash that will work. I will post a photo of the complete quilt once the binding is added and sewn down.

T-shirt Quilts

Have you made a T-shirt quilt? They are a great way to recycle old T-shirts.

Our Collection

I realized yesterday that we have three (3) T-shirt Quilts in our home:

  • A king-size T-shirt quilt made from 49 of Terry the Quilting Husband’s old t-shirts and a couple of mine. It is super warm (it has flannel shirt flannel fabric on back) so we use it in the winter:
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Terry Birthday T-Shirt Quilt, pieced by Tierney Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

  • A lap-size T-shirt quilt made from our collection of Schnauzer-themed t-shirts (and yes many of the t-shirts below were worn by Terry – he is a man who unabashedly loves dogs!). We have it as a wall-hanging in our bedroom:
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Schnauzer T-shirt Quilt, pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

Several of the schnauzer T-shirts are from when we used to attend the annual “Schnauzer Walk” in Portland Oregon, which we fondly call “Schnauzer Fest” as a huge group of miniature, standard and giant schnauzers take over one of the parks in the Portland area for a day!

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  • A T-shirt quilt made from our collection of microbrewery themed T-shirts (primarily Terry’s except for the “Central Oregon Beer Angels” one). Terry keeps this one in his sewing studio/guest room area:
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Microbrew Aficionado T-shirt, pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

Resources

The two books I own that I use as resources on T-shirt quilts are Memory Quilts: Using T-Shirts, Autographs, and photos by Meredith Corporation (2007); and T-Shirt Quilts Made Easy  by Martha Deleonardis (2012)


Postscript

We have a stash of more T-shirts to make eventually into another quilt. I love the idea of T-shirt quilts and the recycling of old T-shirts.

When my father passed, I made my brother and sister each a T-shirt quilt of his old T-shirts (our father loved his collection of humorous T-shirts, I got my quirky sense of humor from my Dad). Now my brother and sister have a piece/memory of my Dad to wrap around them!

Terry the Quilting Husband, also has a very quirky sense of humor. One of his favorite t-shirts, which I incorporated into the king-size bed quilt, is from when we lived in Texas from the late 1980s to late 1990s. The humor in Terry wearing this t-shirt is that we are originally from NY and except for NE England, you can’t get more “Yankee” than that!

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Let’s Talk About Generosity

We went for a wander around Barnes & Nobles Bookstore earlier this afternoon and I spent an extended time browsing the magazine/periodical section. While browsing, I located a publication a friend of mine was looking for – the Nov/Dec 2016 issue of Poet & Writers magazine.  Upon returning home I decided to flip through this magazine before setting it aside to give to my friend.

On page 25 I discovered a feature called “The Time Is Now: Writing Prompts and Exercises“. This section had writing prompts for Poetry, Fiction and Nonfiction.

The “Nonfiction” prompt was “A Great Act of Generosity” and it encouraged the reader to “write a personal essay about a time when you have been the giver or receiver of a great act of generosity.” This was proceeded be a discussion on how the holiday season is often associated with generosity and giving.

I am not going to share a whole personal essay on an act of generosity but I do want to share how today I was overwhelmed with a feeling, let’s say “from the Universe”, that I needed to be generous:

After leaving our extended browsing through Barnes & Nobles bookstore, Terry the Quilting Husband suggested that we have lunch at our local Whole Foods Market as a treat.  Whole Foods was packed with Sunday shoppers and Sunday diners in the food court section. We grabbed a couple slices of pizza and searched for an open place to sit. The only available seating was a shared table with a homeless-looking man sitting at one end.

I started to hesitate and find another place to sit, but I thought “no, we need to sit here”. We sat at one end and the homeless-looking gentleman, who appeared to have all his worldly possession stuffed into an very old and falling apart backpack, sat at the other end of the table.

But he did not appear to be just sitting, he appeared to be cowering at the other end and was eating from a small can of beans. He was up against a window and he appeared to be trying to making himself appear to be as small as possible and a feeling a great sadness was emanating from him. Around us tables of other shoppers were chatting and laughing as they enjoyed their Whole Foods culinary delights. 

I tried to ignore the homeless-looking gentleman at first, I wanted to just eat my pizza and leave as quickly as possible. His sadness was palpable and ruining in my mind my good feelings from my recent fun browsing at the bookstore. Then I was overcome with a feeling that I needed to be generous and give this man some money. It was a very strong feeling as if I could not even leave Whole Foods without showing this man some generosity. (Usually we do not give money directly to homeless individuals but we donate to locate homeless shelters so that we know that the money is used for food and lodging and not “recreational uses”.)

So upon finishing my pizza, I stood up, gave the gentleman sitting in the corner $10 and wished him “Happy Holidays” and that I hoped he could get something else to eat beside the beans.  He looked at me in complete surprise, and then the most incredible smile came upon his face. It was one of those smiles that emanates from someone’s soul – what I call a “deep smile”. It was as if I had given him $1000. 

As we left the store and went to our car, we had to pass by the window in which he was sitting and I turned to see him profusely waving to me through the window, still with that huge and “deep smile” on his face. 

To me it was only $10, but I suspect to him it was a lot more.

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Photo credit: Juddson Vance, freeimages.com

Thank you for reading my about my experience with generosity today.

I now invite you to share a brief story if you like of an experience where you were a giver or receiver of an act of generosity.

You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you. ― John Bunyan


Postscript

I wanted to share a quick follow up to the recent posts Terry the Quilting Husband – Update and What’s on the Design…Bed.

We finished both quilt tops and they are now with the long-arm quilter! Next time I post on them, it will be to show you the finished quilts. Yay! (The feeling of actually finishing something is so wonderful, ha!)

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The Glass Harvest

Check out Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer’s blog page Schnauzer Snips, for her later musings.


“Harvesting” Glasses

It’s Thanksgiving, so a post about a “harvest” is very appropriate, right?

But Tierney, have you lost your mind? How can you harvest glasses? Are you growing glasses in your garden? Do you have a Glass Farm!??!?! (Yes I know that would be both physically and chemically impossible!)

No, this post is about recycling the glass from nice candles into drinking glasses.

I LOVE nice candles. High quality candles. As they can be rather expensive, I only purchased them occasionally as a special treat. In addition to the scent, I select a high quality scented candle based on the “reusability” of the candle’s glass holder.

My love of high quality candles started 8 years ago when I happened upon a garage sale in which someone was selling brand new Votivo candle for $1. All I knew was that the candle smelled wonderful and I paid the $1 and left the garage sale with my find. Little did I know these “designer” candles retail for $25!

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Photo credit: amazon.com

When the candle was burned down I realized I did not want to part with the high quality glass that it came with. The glass had a nice weight and would make a lovely juice glass.

So I figured out a way to “harvest” the glass and get rid of the wax and wick inside.

Here is collection of harvested ex-candle glasses that we use as our daily glasses:

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Here is the “harvesting” process I have refined over the years (recently I harvested a new ex-candle glass):

First, I let the candle burn all the way to the bottom:

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Next, I boil water and then place the candle in a metal bowl with boiled water, to soften the wax and the glued/anchored wick at the bottom:

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Then, when the wax is soft, I use an old spoon and scoop out the wax and the wick and it’s based (with many high quality candles the wick in anchored to the bottom of the glass):

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Once the wax is removed (or as much as I can remove it), I use hot soapy water (dish soap) and an old sponge and scrub out the glass; I also remove any labels by scrubbing/peeling them off:

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Finally, I run it through the dishwasher and Voila – a new glass:

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My newly “harvested” glass and a couple other former candle glasses (note my new glass is filled with my favorite beverage – Blood Orange Organic Soda):

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Sure I could recycle these glasses via the Glass Recycling service provided by our municipal garbage company, but this way I get to keep on enjoying them after the candle is gone!


Postscript

Just a quick update on my adventures in English Paper Piecing (EPP), as a follow up to these these post: Adventures in English Paper Piecing (Part I) and The Library Stack (and a little EPP).

Terry the Quilting Husband has been helping with setting up my hexagons for EPP. I cut the fabric into 3 inch x 3 inch squares, he lightly glues (with glue stick) the hexagons to the fabric and I trim them down a bit before doing the EPP.

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He also now helps punch the holes into the paper punched hexagons that will make it easy to remove the paper templates once the hexagons are sewn together.

He seems to enjoy these type of projects while he watches football (or he is just one very nice and helpful husband!)

I’ve made a lot of EPP hexagons (aka “hexies”) so far, but that is another post….

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Terry the Quilting Husband – Update

This update could be part of my ongoing series – What’s on the Design Wall, but it is more like “Guess Who is Hogging the Design Wall?!?!”

The answer is – Terry the Quilting Husband!

I have not posted an update in a long time on what Terry has been working on. He took a little break from quilting projects to work on house projects.

Last time I posted on his project, it was back in July in the 07/26/16 post What’s on the Design WallIn this post, Terry was working on a “stacked coins” type quilt.

If you are wondering what became of that quilt..well..it is “on hold” right now. It was not working design wise and Terry discovered some technical errors in his sewing that made the quilt “wavy” when it was assembled. Something went awry in the piece of the denim setting strips.

So we decided that I would take it apart (and down from the design wall) and work on reimagining it at a future date. Terry was fine with that and knew the quilt was just not working. Even as a new quilter, he realizes that sometimes you have to just put something aside for later, and maybe take it apart and start over.

But he did not give up on quilting and has a new piece up on the design wall now (hogging the large design wall in our hallway!).

It’s a Flannel “Half-Square Triangle” Party! 

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I think Terry really enjoys making “half-square” triangles. I think he finds it mediative.

Terry selected the fabric for this quilt from a collection of Woolies flannel fat quarters we purchased during a road trip.

He promises to work on sewing the quilt together Thanksgiving week so I can have the design wall back!


Postscript

If you would like to read more about Terry the Quilting Husband and his adventures, check out the other posts in the Category – Terry the Quilting Husband.

The Library Stack (and a little EPP)

The “tierney” in tierneycreates, has not done a lot of creating lately. I wonder if I am stuck. I have been reading about creating and I have been preparing to create (does that count?) but more about that later in this post.


The (Sort of) Current Library Stack

I am continuing my series of posts on the latest stack of books borrowed from my local library. At the time of writing this post, my stack has dwindled and I only have a couple books left – primarily the Vegan cookbooks and the book Why Write by Mark Edmundson.

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I have enjoyed all the book except for the interior decorating book, Dreaming Small: Intimate Interiors by Douglas Woods. The book has a five-star rating on Amazon.com but I thought it was a snoozer (and yes I literally fell into a sweet little nap in my chair while reading/browsing through it).

The problem may not be the book, the problem may be that I am just completely burned out on home decorating books. They used to be a wonderful source of daydream but now many of them irritate me (except for the home decorating book The Nesting Place by Myquillyn Smith, which I discussed in my previous Library Stack post).

Terry the Quilting Husband, does not usually comment on my Library Stack sitting on the table next to my reading chair in the front window. He just accepts that his wife goes kind of wild on borrowing books from the library (there are worse habits to have in life). He did however tease me endlessly about a book called Mason Jar Nation (by JoAnn Moser).

Terry picked up the book and said: “Wow! A WHOLE BOOK about Mason Jars – WOW! Can I read it after you are done – it sounds SO exciting!” Through my laughter I heard him say something like: “No, no don’t tell me how it ends, I don’t want you to ruin it for me. I can’t wait to find out what the Mason Jars have been up to!”

I guess he does not fully appreciate all the options for craft related books and that yes, there are many people who enjoy making crafts with Mason Jars. The book was moderately interesting and did provide a nice history of Mason Jars. It did not inspire me to run out and buy some Mason jars and start crafting with them but it was fun to read while sipping my tea.

You might ask – why all the Vegan cookbooks? Are you Vegan or are you going Vegan? No to both questions. I love the idea of being Vegan, but there is one thing that keeps me from being Vegan, a little thing called B-A-C-O-N. Why live if you can never have bacon again? (Apologies to any Vegetarian or Vegan readers).

I work from home as a telecommuter for my pay-the-bills-job and so I eat lunch at home most days. Although I might be having meat and dairy with my dinner, I want to explore eating Vegan for lunch. I like the idea of “eating clean” for my mid-day meal. Terry the Quilting Husband has no interest in Vegan but you never know what I can slip into his diet (I have been very successful with slipping things years ago he said he would never eat like broccoli, spinach and kale! Oh wait, he reads my blog, now he will know what I am up to…)


Getting Ready to Create

Speaking of “library stacks”, I really enjoyed a book from my previous library stack (my August 23rd Library Stack posting) titled All Points Patchwork by Diane Gilleland. I enjoyed this book so much that I bought it. 

This book covers the fundamentals of English Paper Piecing (EPP) as well as options for creating cool pieces using EPP. I have been getting ready to EPP and will have a future post on my Adventures in EPP.

There is a reason why I wanted to pick up EPP and I will discuss that later when I do my post on EPP (it has to do with trying to break an evening addiction to playing iPad games).

In addition to the book from the library, I was also influenced/inspired by one of the blogs I follow – Alice Samuel Quilt Company and a post the blogger did on recycling her old wedding invitations into EPP templates – A Box Full of Junk. I love the idea of using unwanted paper for something creative!

So here is what I have put together so far – a whole lot of hexagon templates using my new punch:

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But more in a future post, first i need to make sure I do not completely embarrass myself trying to do EPP (if you never hear me mention those three words/three letters again you’ll know it did not work out…or I could post about “Misadventures in English Paper Piecing”!)


POSTSCRIPT

Someday I will follow up on all the other projects I have discussed and shared my start on. Right now I seem to just be building up my stash of “UFOs” (if you are not a quilter, refer to my post Lexicon of Quilters’ Acronyms).


Feature Photo Credit: Gary Tamin, free images.com

What’s on the Design Wall

This post is a follow up to the 07/14/16 post What’s on the Design Wall (as well as another post mentioned in the Postscript section)

Terry, “The Quilting Husband”, continues his “take over” the large temporary design wall in the hallway (temporary until we install a permanent large design wall in the hallway) with his piece in progress.  Here is his current progress from the 07/14/16 post – he has now inserted strips of pieced recycled denim between the rows.

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We love recycling denim. Did you know how much it takes to produce a pair of jeans and the impact on the environment to create one pair of denim jeans?

I read an interesting article in the Winter 2015 edition of Interweave’s Stitch magazine, “Denim; Shaping the World, One Pair at a Time” by Kathy Augustine (pages 16 – 17).

Here are some interesting numbers from this article to give you a perspective of what it “costs” environmentally to make a pair of jeans:

An estimated 2 billion pairs of blue jeans are produced each year. It takes one bale of cotton (approximately 480 pounds of cotton) to produced 215 pairs of jeans, or 2.23 pounds of cotton per pairs. One acre of farmland produced approximately 740 pounds of cotton and cotton requires about 1,000 gallons of water per pound of fiber, so it took 2230 gallons of water to make that pair of jeans you are wearing and the average American has 7 pairs of jeans.

So I get pretty happy when I am involved in denim recycling and letting the effort all that water go towards something that can keep someone warm and cozy or decorate their house after the denim is no longer wearable.

I will wait and see what Terry does with the rest of the fabric for this piece he is working on (like an interesting border?) and then I would like to make a table runner with smaller pieces of recycled denim and the scraps from his piece. I think it would make an interesting “Country” style table runner.


Postscript

My sunflower obsession continues, as discussed in the post Waiting for the Sunflowers. This weekend I went over a friend’s house who had massive amounts of sunflowers in her front yard . Several of the sunflower plants had reached “Sunflower Tree” heights (nearly “house-size” sunflowers!).

Here are some of my photos (note the sunflowers were towards the end of their blooming):

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Of course I took some cuttings home to put in my sunroom!

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(Okay Tierney! Enough with the sunflowers already, move onto another topic.)

Maybe. I cannot promise sunflowers won’t be mentioned again in a future post (smile).

What’s on the Design Wall

Continuing my series on What’s on the Design Wall: Projects in Progress…


Terry the Quilting Husband, fresh from his sale of two of his quilts during the 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, is eagerly working on a new piece (maybe for the 2017 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show?).

Terry is using our new temporary “giant design wall” that I discuss in the post Whole House Crafting. Until we get the interior walls of our house repainted (someday) we are just using a package of Warm & Natural batting on one of our hallway walls.  A future house project is to build a nice large design wall on this side of the one hallway in our little home.

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Terry likes to work from parameters I start him off with and he does not like quilt patterns of any kind. I tried to help him learn how to follow quilt patterns, but he strongly prefers to work intuitively.

I had a stack of 2.5 inch strips from an old kit (for a very ugly table runner) that I was never going to make. After sewing sections of the strips together, he is going to inset denim between them some how. All his concept – I only gave him the strips.

Here is my stash of recycle denim he is looking through to complete his design:

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The chair in my studio with my stash of denim scraps

Can’t wait to see how it comes out!

2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show Part III

Continuing my series of blog posts of photos and experiences from attending the annual Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show on Saturday July 9, 2016.


Tierney’s SOQS Quilts

Part of the fun (or challenge) of putting quilts in the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show (SOQS) is finding where they are hung in the show.

In addition to the quilt, Recycled Doors, I had in the Central Oregon SAQA Doors Exhibit (see post 2016 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show Part II) I had 5 other quilts. I was only able to locate 2 of the 5 other quilts at the show.

Terry the Quilting Husband and I stumbled upon one of my quilts in an awesome location – in front of The Nest Design Studio. The aesthetic of my quilt hung outside a home design studio was exquisite. I am honored that the SOQS staff selected that location to hang my quilt.

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Modern Bedtime – designed and pieced by Tierney Davis Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

I discovered a crowd of people looking at the quilt and I could not resist: I introduced myself as as “the artist”, answered questions and posed for photos with the quilt.

I also loitered around the quilt for about 5 minutes to introduce myself again to the next group of people admiring the quilt. I got to chat with several lovely individuals, posed for a couple more photos with the quilt, and got some new tierneycreates blog readers!

Alas, the quilt did not sell. I might have priced it too high and it was not bed size as I had originally intended (for that story, please see the 5/1/16 post The Downsized Quilt).  However, I am happy to have it back at home.  It now rests on the back of the chair in my cozy reading nook.


Terry the Quilting Husband’s SOQS Quilts

The 2016 SOQS was Terry’s first time showing his quilts. He was part of the Special Exhibit: Made by Men. Here is a link to the Bend Bulletin article on the Made by Men Exhibit, which featured 27 quilts made by male quilters from 4 different states:

Sisters quilt show highlights men’s quilts

Terry tried to play it off but I could tell he was pretty proud having his five (5) quilts hanging in the special exhibit.

I dragged him over to several groups of people who were admiring his quilts and introduced him as “the quilter”. It was very endearing to listen to him answer questions on how a quilt was made and his design process!

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Colorful Modern Squares – designed & pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

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Charming You – pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

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Cozy Flannel Shirts – designed and pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

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Squares Gone Wild – designed and pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

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Cozy Flannel Snuggle – designed and pieced by Terry Hogan, quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe

Two (2) of his quilts sold – Cozy Flannel Shirts and Charming You. He already has two quilts in queue for the 2017 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show!


POSTSCRIPT

51hagjiRNML._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_I continue to listen to and enjoy the excellent audiobook – Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth (2016), read by the author, first mentioned in my 07/02/16 post Grit

The author discusses the famous “Bricklayer Parable” in regards to “job” vs. “career” vs. “calling“. Here is a paraphrasing of that parable:

A man comes upon three men laying bricks for a church being built.

He asks the first man: ‘What are you doing?’ The first man replies: ‘I am taking bricks and piling them one on top of the other and putting cement in between them.’

He asks the second man: ‘What are you doing?’ The second man replies: ‘I’m building a wall that will form the outside structure of a large building.’

Finally he asked the third man: ‘What are you doing?’ The third man replies: ‘I am building a house of God.’

All three men are performing the same job but they all have different perspectives on that task – “a job” vs. “a career” vs. “a calling”.

So far (and I am over 1/2 way through) this is, in my opinion, a truly inspirational five (5) star audiobook.