My old boyfriend Vlad

We are just days away from the end of summer, so I thought I’d dust off one of my old quilted boyfriends and give him a little sunlight. I designed Vlad the mug rug last fall.


Vlad 2.0 has a new look because I finally, finally bought a new-to-me Bernina and I am venturing into the world of true quilting, not just piecing. To be sure, I’m no Lori Kennedy nor am I a Tim Latimer, but the meandering stitch on Vlad makes me somewhat hopeful that I will be able to <eventually> become self-sufficient throughout the entire quilting process.

I snagged the new machine off a Facebook garage sale. I got lucky and the machine only needed a regular tuneup. The steal deal also included lots of extra feet, including a walking foot, an embroidery foot and quilting foot. I think I’m going to love my little Bernie — maybe I’ve acquired another boyfriend?

Pix-elated Skull

I spent a fun weekend in Erie, Pa watching my roommate’s son-in-law run a marathon. SIL is a fast runner and the Erie race is a good one for qualifying for the Boston Marathon. The site of the race, Presque Isle state park, is lovely — I will definitely return to Erie for the beachfront, the shopping, the wine and the food.



Calm Lake Erie on the morning of the race. The weather was perfect for runners.

SIL qualified — in personal best fashion. As a former (much slower) marathoner, it was a thrill to see him cruise across the finish line in under 3 hours. (More from Boston in April!)

It was also a great family trip because one of the three cutest grandchildren on the planet was also in Erie to watch his dad race. Said grandchild may have been in grandparent overload, as all 5 of his living grands were in attendance. How many grandparents does it take to change a diaper at a marathon? Apparently three. I’ll spare you the photographic evidence. You’ll just have to trust me on this.

Between pre- and post-marathon wine samples , we picked apples so us non-runners could say the weekend wasn’t only about the wine.


We arrived after closing time at the u-pick farm, but the Rahal farm team was gracious and stayed late so these first-time apple pickers could celebrate marathon success in the orchard.

In the past, I’ve only spent limited time in Erie as we were racing out to Columbus to visit Cindy. Now it’s on my list of fun weekend trips. I’m looking forward to going again and finding more hidden gems.

On the sewing front, my pix-elated skull has finally emerged as an antidote to my pix-elated e-heart from Valentine’s day. Machine quilting to commence shortly.


It’s hard to tell from this photo, but Abe Lincoln has left the building. My sweet little boy has re-emerged from his Amish phase and is back there somewhere.

Stuck on the Border

A few years ago, a friend gave me some cute fabric from “The Magic of Oz” collection by Wilmington Prints.

I love shoes (almost as much as I like fabric) so the ruby slippers print was the perfect gift for me.


In the process of cleaning my sewing room, I found a favorite book by Sandy Bonsib.  I love Sandy’s patterns and there are several in this book that are on to my “to do” list.  The pattern “Kaleidoscope Kaper” seemed like a good fit for my ruby slippers fabric!


I cut out all my triangles using the template in Sandy’s book.  Easy, no problem!


Four sets of two triangles start to look like a kaleidoscope.


I am liking this block!


Polka dot corners add some new texture and interest.


Nine kaleidoscope blocks will make a nice pillow, don’t you think?


So…I am stuck on the border of my ruby slippers pillow!

Do I go with basic black?

What about a red checked binding?