Monday, June 30, 2008
Next is my father's baby quilt dating to the 1920s (he was born in 1927). He called it his Bunny Quilt. It's so cute and threadbare. Each appliqueed bunny has a pompom for a tail, except for a few that are missing. I'm sure someone would scream about choking hazards were one to put pompoms on a baby quilt these days. My dad loved his Bunny Quilt!
Next we have a stuff-as-you-go quilt made by Frances Burger and my mom. The fabrics are the real thing, the feedsack prints people love to reproduce these days.
Here is a wholecloth baby quilt my grandma (Frances) made for either my brother or my sister. She made two and one is marked as my sister's. Just cute fabric and sturdy machine quilting in the allover ocean waves design she used so often.
I have a couple more that I'll post another day.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Here's one our grandmas all knew but may have forgotten to tell us (or maybe we just weren't listening): Plan to do your white wash on mowing day. When the lawn is mowed, lay your wet whites out on the fresh-cut grass and let the chlorophyll and sunshine brighten them up. You'll be amazed.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Wal-Mart had this printed cotton duck. It looks quite like awning striped canvas except that it's just printed, not yarn dyed, so only one side looks good. I doubled the fabric so that the unprinted side never shows, and that did the trick.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Some of the sale prices are written on the back. Scythes sold for 20 cents each, a cultivator for $14.00, a cow for $48 and a bay mare for $17.
I also had an interesting time looking through Grandpa Burger's ledgers from 1944 to 1958 - all the expenses of running a small farm and a busy family. He was meticulous in recording every last expense - three-cent stamps, ice cream in town for the family, a telephone call to El Dorado. Mom and I retraced through the ledger entries a time when she had several rotten teeth removed, then soon thereafter came down with rheumatic fever, and the hospital and doctor expenses associated with her treatment. Then there were vet bills, chick feed, shoe repairs, blade sharpening, haircuts, kerosene, and tickets to the school operetta. Fascinating stuff.
On May 6, 1948, Frank paid $10.86 for delivery of a refrigerator - their first, a gift from Grandma's sister Connie, shipped from out East somewhere.
Tucked in the ledger was the pedigree of a registered Hereford bull calved in 1948, and a list of the names of some of his cows - Irma, Daisy, Lady, Skippy, Judy, Daisy Bell, Ruby and Pearl - all but one of whom were born there on the farm. (Irma was purchased at about age 3.)
She told me that a big man on a motorcycle had said hi to her as she passed in and out the door. She said she said hi back to him, and then he said, "Don't you know you should never talk to strangers? Especially not strangers on motorcycles."
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
These are my dear dad, Marvin Root, and first my brother at 7 weeks (he looks so cute propped in the corner of the couch there - also please note the groovy midcentury furniture) and then me in my blue coat and hood that I loved. If you think he has sort of a 1960s rocket scientist thing going on there, with the glasses, haircut and those socks, surprise - that's pretty much what he was.
We are making great progress here at my folks' house. I can't quantify how much we have accomplished except to say that the pile of empty boxes is enormous, and it doesn't count all those we have broken down and baled for recycling. I'm going to guess that we have emptied probably 40 boxes and thrown, given away or sorted everything that they contained. We're working toward clear labeling of what is left, so that they know exactly where everything is. It's exhausting but so rewarding.
I'm particularly just enjoying being around my parents for some enforced togetherness. I just keep thinking God for this time with them. Also my husband, for letting me take a week to do this.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
I believe I bought this thinking it would make a good quilt backing, before I learned that sheets aren't usually a great choice for that. I have put it back into service as a bedsheet. It's so pretty! It wrinkles, but if it flaps on the line for awhile, it's not too bad.
Monday, June 23, 2008
My method has long been to compulsively hoard them "just in case." Of what, you ask? I never know. I can, of course, recount horror stories of beautiful quilts with ink spilled on them, or new puppies teething on them. But honestly, it doesn't happen often enough in real life to warrant all the little bundles of fabric I have in storage.
Judy Laquidara mentioned last week on her blog, Patchwork Times, her system of making squares of her leftovers and sorting them into the "appropriate plastic boxes." PERK! went my ears. I love the idea of sorting things! Into boxes! Quickly, Judy, tell me how this works, I wrote.
... they're assorted by size. Every time I have a 2-1/2" strip, and I don't use every inch of it, I whack it into 2-1/2" squares and they go into the 2-1/2" squares box. I have boxes for 2", 2-1/2", 3", 3-1/2", all the way up to 5". If I have anything bigger than that, I cut it down to whatever allows me to get the most squares, like a 6" strip, I would cut into 3" squares or 2" and 4" squares.
I also have a box for half square triangles because I sometimes end up with extras of those. I love having those already made when I'm making a scrappy quilt. Honestly, sometimes when I'm wanting to sew but just don't feel like or don't have the time to drag out a project, I'll just sit and make scrappy half square triangles and save them for future use. Gives me a sense of accomplishment, lets me sew and doesn't involve too much thinking.
I also save all my leftover binding strips. They go into a big drawer. When I'm making a really scrappy quilt, I'll sometimes pull out those binding pieces, sew them all together and I have binding!
Good luck getting yours under control.
Here's a picture of her plastic boxes filled with gorgeous bits and pieces:
What a great idea. :)
Sunday, June 22, 2008
This is really ringing true for me this week. I'm at my parents' house with Little Miss A, and we are helping them sort through 50-plus years' worth of accumulation with the thought that someday, possibly, maybe, they might kinda sorta want to think about considering moving. Perhaps.
Anyway, my mom says I AM the Special Forces. I'm praying that I will be a good motivator but not pushy.
1. Hang wet socks in pairs by their toes. The clothespin straddles the clothesline and nips the toes of the socks in its end.
2. When socks are dry, turn one open end back around both socks to hold them together.
3. Take the now paired up socks off the clothesline and put them away.
Saturday, June 21, 2008
I hope Catherine doesn't mind that I am barging in on her Saturday's Apron idea.
This is one of those she calls a Housework Apron - just a nice all-around carryall, egg collector and dust wiper. This one is machine sewn but homemade. And look at those crazy shopping poodles! I just couldn't resist.
Friday, June 20, 2008
As usual, my brilliant plan was not so brilliant. The batt is doing a great job of keeping the silica sand in - about as good a job as it does at keeping sharp pointy things OUT. I mean, like pins. It's so hard to push a pin in to the thing!
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Anyway I have scheduled a post for every day, even a couple of Friday Finishes! I'll check in to see what you all have accomplished when I can.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
One message board * posted this informational poster on the subject:
Casual attire is recommended for the Rioting Event.
Rioting Event Participants are encouraged to register
no later than noon, and to pick up their
free packet on Rioting Safety from the
Local Chamber of Commerce.
It includes a 4 oz sample of sunscreen and
"I Rioted the Iowa Flood" bumper sticker.
First Aid stations will be located every 50 ft within the
Rioting Event area, manned by local Explorer Scouts.
Help make the Iowa Flood Riots a memorable event.
For those Iowans unfamiliar with Rioting Events,
suggested activities include:
- Waving Things in the Air
- Throwing Things
- The Stringing of Toilet Paper from Trees
- Spray-Painting of Slogans
- Chanting of Slogans
- God Bless America!
- We Support Our Troops!
- Thank You, National Guard!
so do come prepared for this event
-- The Iowa Interfaith Council on Safe Rioting
a non-taxpayer funded community volunteer group
Lil Dot seems tinier than her half sisters/brothers, who are being raised by Eowyn, were, but I may just be remembering wrong. They are big, clumsy, half-feathered, dorky looking chicks now, not much "cute" left, but Dot makes up for it in the cuteness department.
Yesterday we let Peanut decide if she was ready to introduce Lil Dot to the flock, and after thinking it over, she decided she was. The Colonel helped, running interference between Lil Dot and her bigger siblings and breaking up potential battles between the ladies before they could get started. Cinderella is the odd hen out now, since she is the only one who has not gone broody and raised babies, and she gets beaten up by both hens if she so much as takes a step toward any of the chicks. Poor thing.
Last night I was in the kitchen, noisily washing dishes while at least two neighbors were running their lawn mowers, and yet over all that racket I still heard Lil Dot's anguished cries as she ran around the chicken pen looking for her mom, who had forgotten about her and gone to bed! I had to go gather her up and put her in the chicken house, where Peanut gave her a look like, "Oh, there you are," and tucked her underneath her feathers.
We optimistically give all the babies girls' names because we can only keep them if they are hens, so we are hoping for the best. The two older chicks are Tilly and Junie B., though I can't tell which is which.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
I don't mention my website much on this blog, but more and more, I am seeing people telling the blogverse about their websites and it not being taken amiss. So here I go: I have had this business for about 5 years now, making reproduction waterslide decals with the permission of the largest decal company in US history. They are not cheap, as the process is rather costly, but they sure are fun.
Check me out at Sweet Gal Decals, won't you please?
Monday, June 16, 2008
So is it the same thing?
Sunday, June 15, 2008
In short, this pigeon is not going to fly on home by himself. Why should he, when he can live like a king here in New Albin!?
Update: He's perched happily on a line right now, surveying his domain. Silly (cute) bird.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
She posts a special apron every Saturday, hence Saturday's Apron. Go take a look. No breaking the 10th commandment, now...
Friday, June 13, 2008
I'm declaring this project finished, even though I'm actually only nearly done. I'm waiting on a couple of things I have to pick up at Wal-Mart -- some storage boxes and a power bar.
Allow me to present --
-- our front porch sewing area! Looking at these pictures, it still looks cluttered, but honestly, I know where everything is. Just ask me. I'll find it for you.
We have two sewing stations set up on my Grandma Root's old kitchen table, with my Pfaff and Miss B's Kenmore side by side.
Beside that, in the corner, is the World's Best Napping Cot --
-- and underneath that, neatly organized and labeled boxes of fabrics.
Over here on the front wall are the old bookshelves from the school auction a year ago this spring. The books are back in boxes so that I can put sewing stuff there.
Top shelf: My button jars, out of their dark lonely storage box to where they can sparkle and entice.
Bottom shelf: The Shelf of Shame, full of unfinished projects. At least they are now out in public where they can mock me until I finish them one by one. They were easy to ignore when I couldn't see them.
Here are those bread boxes I told you about last week, filled with fat quarters and other small pieces of quilting fabrics. Accessible, yet if I close the doors they don't get dusty.
Threads and notions in that little cabinet on the bottom, more fabric in the crate and suitcase. I love old suitcases but they really aren't great for storing fabric simply because you can't see what is inside, so you go buy more of what you already have. Or maybe that's just me.
Finally, I'm starting to put fabric in that Hoosier type cabinet there against the wall. The curtained part on the bottom would be ideal for fabric except
someone else had other plans for it. I gave up and just put an old scrap of soft velour there and it's now a cat storage area.
One thing that I have learned from obsessive reading of Unclutterer and Debt Proof Living is that clutter and too many possessions steal your time. You spend so much time moving them around, searching through them, trying to keep them organized, and so much money in providing the space for them, or worse yet, buying more when you can't find what you already have. This project has driven that lesson home quite nicely. It took a lot of hours to set up this place where Miss B and I could finally use the stuff I had accumulated. I found a lot of duplicates, which means that I re-bought when I didn't know what I had. And I ended up throwing out a lot of things and donating even more to The Way Station. So I really didn't need it, wasn't using it, and I wasted part of my life and my family's in refusing to get rid of it till now.
Lesson learned, I hope. Though it is ongoing.
While I have you here, what do you think I should do with this fabric? It was a gift from my secret weapon, my neighbor who still does hand quilting. She had hung onto it for a long time and never found a use for it, so she passed it on to me. It's a wonderful printed cotton, very soft. There are actually two pieces of about this size. All I can think of is backing to a quilt or pillows. I don't need any more pillows, and I don't make many pink quilts - too frou-frou for my tastes. Any suggestions?
Other Finished by Friday projects out there:
Nicole at Sister's Choice did TWO tops this week
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Oh, and one more thing: I am officially a Bad Daughter. For some reason I got mixed up on my weekends and didn't mail Father's Day gifts in time! My dad's might still make it if I get it out tomorrow but it's not for certain. My father-in-law's has no chance whatsoever in getting to him. Well, unless I overnight it. I'll have to check how that could be done. Trouble is, it's something HEAVY. And I was going to send some books along for my mother-in-law who is at home recovering from major surgery and could use some distraction.
Grrr. Bad daughter. Bad, bad, bad!