Cindy and I have 4 big quilts in the works, hoping for a Christmas finish for all.
I’m taking a week of vacation from my pays-the-bills job and “relaxing” at home with a long housework to-do list, a big pile of new fabric, and an urgent side-hustle project I’ve got to complete. It should be fun–no, really–I mean it!
I love to get the chance to use my brain in a different way. I’m not the type to sit by the beach for very long. Nor can I relax in front of the TV without something to do. I expect this to be a stimulating and inexpensive staycation– well, as long as I can stay out of the fabric store.
Also, I’ve given up social media for the time being. Twitter makes me laugh, but it represents hours of wasted time where I could be doing something productive. The golden rule I’ve drilled into my son is that he should be a creator of content, not a consumer of content. The creators are the ones who achieve things in the life. I choose to be a creator. This week I will enjoy my dedicated creator time.
For accountability, I’m listing the four quilts in the pipeline for a Christmas finish:
- Modified Garden Gate Charm for the young granddaughter of a dear friend. I chose the fabric Fiddle Dee Dee by Me and My Sister Designs as the foundation of this quilt. I’ll supplement with fabric from my stash to add even more interest.
- Same quilt in a different color way for the middle granddaughter of the same dear friend. She has another granddaughter who is a toddler — I’ll have to think of something for her too, of course!
- My first string quilt. A long time ago, I created a few blocks of a string quilt so I could understand the technique. Those blocks have been stashed in a box for a while, but I restarted the project because it’s a really good way to mindlessly sew while reducing the contents of a crammed strips fabric bin. Our mother has a friend who has been trapped in a nursing home through this pandemic. The string quilt will go to her. Mom is here helping me iron and seam-rip. She’ll be a big help in ramping up the block production line.
- The barn quilt for BIL in Florida. Our youngest sister asked for a replica of the Bee In My Bonnet quilt I made early in my quilting career. It was my my first sew-a-long quilt. I was trying to make a paper pieced pattern of our gray barn for BIL, to make the barn quilt extra special, but it has just not come together way in the that I planned (yet). So, Cindy resurrected the Lori Holt barn pattern and she’s off having fun and speedily churning out blocks. She already has 5 barns completed. She has agreed to make all of the barn door blocks using patterns from the book Sylvia’s Wedding Sampler by Elm Street Quilt (I love this book!). We’ll work on the quilt together over long distance. We think we need 20 barns to make a queen-sized version.
Mom and I did some more canning this week. We made yummy spiced pear jam from a pear tree that my son and my father planted many years ago on the farm. This is the first year that the tree has produced an abundance of pears. I used this recipe as a base, but added star anise, and a hunk of fresh ginger along with the cinnamon sticks. I also subbed apple cider for the water. It is amazing. I’m adding it to my morning oatmeal as a topper, but I’m dreaming of making it an accompaniment of a warm roast pork. (BTW, my lawyer says you shouldn’t take my canning advice.)
And let’s not forget about the sauerkraut, bubbling away in the quart mason jars right behind me. The cabbages came from my community garden plot. When we were little on the farm, mom used to make sauerkraut in big floor-sized crocks. However, I believe older sister Sue is currently using said crock as an end table. So…we’re trying a new-to-me-thing called a pickle pipe. I love a useful invention and I am fascinated by fermented foods at the moment. (Insert more lawyerly language about ignoring any advice that might involve food poisoning.)
Happy fall! Happy Sandy’s vacation week!