Teal Dragon Quilts

A world of Quilts and Dragons!

Changing

Change my theme. But I LOVE my theme. It’s my favorite color and I have TEAL in the name of my blog. I was told I wouldn’t have to keep any of the themes I tried. So, OK. Here it goes.

First one I tried is called Adaption. It was clean and crisp. I liked it. I was even able to choose a blue color. But the background was white.

Second, I tried Koi and it had a sandy background, and I was thinking, maybe I’ll keep this one. The words show up better against the screen.

The assignment was to try 3, so here I go. I tried A Brand New Day, which is the one I am using now. I like it. Please let me know what you think. Is it better than the dark teal? I’m thinking I like this one better.

Thank you Blogging 101 for helping to step outside my box and try something new!

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Dream a Little Dream

Laugh, Cry, Quilt, Hug, Love
Life’s journey, ups and downs, shared
My Friends see me through.

Today’s assignment is a toughie! I have my dream husband, for the most part. I have my dream house, with my dream of a sewing machine, I have my dream piano and I still love my violin after 27 years. But a dream reader? I haven’t figured out who that is. I know my friends read, they post these awesome inspiring comments to keep me going. I know I have a few lurkers and lookie loos. I guess I need to figure out who you are dream reader.

You must absolutely LOVE quilts. And oh yeah, a liking of dragons is pretty important. Tho, I’m still trying to figure out how to bring them to the party. Knowledge of someone wanting a custom quilt would be great, since that’s why I started blogging, to drive people to my website, which by the way is a disaster, so I hope this person is still imaginary.

But my reason for blogging has changed. I blog to share. I love telling my story of my journey to others. Talking in front of a crowd gives me the heebie jeebies, but writing for a crowd, makes my heart sing. I think if music had not taken over my young life, I would have turned to writing. Violin and Piano became such a part of my life early on, that there wasn’t much room for other interests.

That said, maybe my dream reader is someone who could benefit from my little bit of knowledge. Someone who likes to listen. Listen to stories of family, stories of growing old, growing up, stories of enrichment. Someone who likes to read of someone’s journey to a better self, a better musician, a better quilter. Someone who could be a great friend.

My dream reader is a friend. Ones I have now and future ones.

Have a great journey and thanks for sharing mine!

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Five new blogs to follow!

The assignment today for Blogging 101 is to find and follow 5 blogs. Easy, right? Well, my reader wasn’t cooperating. Couldn’t locate the “topic” button I was being told about. GRRR! I decided to do it the old fashioned way. Google!

Found 5 blogs super easy. Of course I searched for blogs about Bernina 880, my new machine! There were several shops, but I wanted one with a person exploring the machine like me. Click here to see it. A woman named Felicia just got a Bernina 880 and is having fun sewing!

Then there is the Embroidery Blog. Of course with my weight loss journey, I had to search healthy eating blogs. I rediscovered ReNae Merrill’s blog. Love her spirals!

The 5th one I found in the blogrolls of WordPress.com I liked it so much I shared it on Facebook. Quotosphere.

I follow so many blogs and never have the time to read. Wendy Shepherd’s Ivory Spring is the only one I read everyday. I love her quilting. But maybe I have discovered some really good ones!

Hope you have a great day, and thanks for sharing my journey with me!

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What’s in a name?

A favorite color, a favorite mystical character and a passion, that is what’s in my title. Love it, still. The URL tries to capture what’s in the blog. I was a real estate agent, I am a musician, an aunt, wife, mommy to Freckles and I just love making quilts! At the time I started this blog, I was on several “journeys”, still am. Getting organized, setting goals, losing weight, getting in shape, improving my brain power. You get the idea, I was bouncing all over the place.

EverythingMaryLou was the original name because I was intending to write about everything in my life. Still may do that, but mostly my blog is about my quilting journey.

The tagline. Custom Quilts and Quilting. Not very fun. But with the Blogging 101 assignment to create a title and tagline, I started playing around with it. I thought about dragons, my love of them and how it got started, with Ann McCaffrey’s Pern series. She created a world filled with dragons. So I want my world (blog space) to be filled with quilts and dragons. Not sure how I will include dragons, but it’s a challenge I am ready to tackle.

I know branding is important so the site will be remembered. Still not quite sure how to go about it. Tho, I will have to hurry up and use my business cards.

The tagline is Custom Quilts. business Card

I think “A World of Quilts and Dragons” will be more fun!

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Who I am and why I am here.

Friends, following me, please pardon while I take Blogging 101. My assignment today is to tell who I am and why I am here. I may have covered in a past post….

I am Mary Louise Webb Van Speybroeck. I am half Irish and the other half is most likely a mix. I didn’t realize I was half anything until I was an adult and my nephew was doing a bio for his school class project. (He’s quarter Irish.) I am a violinist/pianist and quilter. I’m also a wife, an Aunt to 19 nieces and nephews, 3 grand nieces and 1 grand nephew, as well as a mommy to a 70 pound puppy!

Why I am here is bit more challenging…

Why am I at Blogging 101? To encourage myself to develop a habit of blogging everyday, continuously. No more big breaks between posts.

Why am I on WordPress? It’s the best blogging space I’ve seen for no cost, of course unless you want to upgrade.

Why am I here blogging? Well,since you asked, I love to write. I love to express myself to others. I am really a introvert with some extrovert tendencies, that weren’t discovered until I took a real estate blogging class. I like to talk quilts and show pictures of my work, and I want to share it with the world. But really, I’m trying to start a quilting business and thought this might be a way to get my name out there. It MIGHT work, if I wouldn’t take so much time off between posts!

Why am I here on this planet? Oooooh, that’s a fun one. I am here to give my husband stress, (just kidding), to love my puppy, to make beautiful music and create drop dead gorgeous quilts! If I can get others to laugh, love, play and quilt, that’s just icing on the top.

Looking forward to Blogging 101 and meeting my classmates!

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Fun in the Sun!

Fun in the Sun!

Mary on a jet ski, in front of a teal dragon. (sea monster) It’s been an unusually long winter. My zodiac sign is Cancer. I do love the water and am looking forward to many beautiful days on the island!

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Whoo Hoo Thursday!

Hello friends,

Thursday is the day I’ve designated for miscellaneous posts and my day off.  But since I haven’t been posting everyday, we’ll call it lagniappe.

Susan Else and our kits!

Susan Else and our kits!

Susan’s lecture on Tuesday night was fun and filled with stories of her art and how she got to where she is today.  I fell in love with her Merry Go Round.  I also picked her up at the airport where we had the adventure of lost luggage….You are probably familiar.  Anyway the luggage did arrive and was delivered to her.  Happy ending.

I’ve never considered myself as an “artist”.  You know, the ones who paint, sculpt, make art quilts.  I am a musician and quilting has given me a visual outlet that I can hold on to instead of just having a memory or recording of a great concert.  So I’ve always toyed with the idea of using quilting as art, but I REALLY enjoy making quilts and seeing the joy they bring to the recipients.

Well, this sculpting with fabric has opened a new window and I think I might climb through.  I have visions of fabric sculpted dragons, one being teal, of course, and bringing my favorite Sci Fantasy to life.  I’ve never been able to draw to my liking, though my sketches look better after a little time has passed…the same with my recordings.  I guess I am just too self critical.

There's me playing Sculptor! My pieces to sculpt The tree of my sculpted piece Here I am working on my sculpture and the tree.  There will be leaves, flowers and a vine added.  I hope to finish with the leaves this weekend.

Thanks, for stopping by and may your journey be filled with fun twists!

Happy Quilting, Mary

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Story Telling Monday

Grandma Flannigan's Chair

Grandma Flannigan’s Chair

Hello Friends!

Welcome to Story Telling Monday.  I apologize for not posting during the week.  It’s been very busy at my house.  A friend of mine from college is visiting and looking for a job in Houston, so we have been talking about old times and catching up.  I would love to share some of our stories, though funny and amusing, they are coming of age stories and not for the general public!  Instead I will share the story of how I got this chair.

This is my great-grandmother’s chair.  It used to have rockers and it was perfect for her height.  (not sure what that was, but she was a petite woman in stature).  She passed away when I was about 7 and I remember her vividly.  I can see her face, her glasses, and I remember that SHE got to sit in Daddy’s chair when she visited.  My brother and I were the only children she let jump on her feather bed.  She was the mother of 12 children, my grandmother being one of the youngest.  She traveled with a bottle of whiskey and her pistol, which she kept under her pillow.

She gave my mother some advice when my brother was born.  “Spoil your children.  You only have them for 18 years and then they move away.  Teach them right from wrong and to respect others property, but if they want to wear their new shoes to bed, let them.”

The chair was passed to my grandmother.  My grandfather hung his ties, belts, and jackets on the chair which sat beside their bed.  When I visited, that is where I sat waiting for my grandfather to get ready; it was just my size.  He said it was MY chair.  I grew up thinking it really was my chair that my grandfather was using.  As I grew older I learned that it belonged to my maternal great-grandmother.

When my grandparents passed, I was asked if there was anything of theirs that I wanted.  I asked for three things.  A music box, my dishes my grandmother had saved for me, and this chair.  It’s made of pine and not really that well constructed, but it’s lasted this long and now we use it for clothes headed to the dry cleaners.

I do not know if Grandma Flannagan quilted, but her daughters are the ones who made the quilts I grew up with.

Hope you have enjoyed this tale and hope to write about photos on fabric for my Technique Tuesday blog.

Happy Quilting!  Mary

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Storytelling Monday

Hello friends, I have another story for you.  I’ve mentioned that I am reading Prosperous Heart by Julia Cameron.  I’ve looked back and have seen that my father had a prosperous heart.  Enjoy the tale!

My father was one of 9 children.  He was 7th in the line. (hey that’s a good number!)  They lived on a farm and would grow cotton to sell so they would have money to buy seeds to plant a garden for vegetables to eat.  There were tales of only getting one pair of shoes a year, and having to go to school barefoot, because said shoes were no longer wearable.  You get the idea, times were tough.

Uncle Buddy was only a year or two older than Daddy and they were inseparable.  They were always scheming of ways to make money.  They played the imaginary game of Rich Man/Poor Man.  (of course imaginary games were frowned on back then.)  They would haul stuff into town to sell.  If they had a wagon, they could haul more stuff to sell!  They looked in Granny’s Sears catalog and found The Little Red Wagon.  They saved and saved to buy the wagon.

They almost had enough, it was Christmas, and the older brothers came to them and said there was no money to buy the babies gifts from Santa, so they were going to use the money Daddy and Uncle Buddy had been saving all year.  I don’t know about you, but I would have been ticked, would have hated Christmas.  I would have felt cheated.  I would have said “over my dead body”.  My daddy gave it freely to his brothers, knowing that he could make more money, but the babies not getting “Santa” would be very sad indeed.

Both my parents loved Christmas.  My mother’s wish was that every child receive something from Santa, but that’s another story!

Happy Quilting, Mary

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UFO Saturday

Texas Two Step

Texas Two Step

Hello Friends,

The Texas Two-Step that I’m working on requires a lot of little pieces sewn together.  Normally, I would chain stitch these.  But this past week, I’ve used them as beginners and enders for Josiah’s t-shirt quilt and Wyatt’s baby quilt.

Beginner/Ender

Two pieces to sew.

I need 30 to complete the quilt.  This past week, I have 10, yea.  Only 20 more to go.  I almost didn’t do this, because I would have to figure out what needed piecing and then prep work for sewing.  Which actually did not take all that much time.  And then with me moving my machine at least twice a week, I would have to restart, and then there’s the accuracy issue.  When I fix a seam, I don’t need a beginner or ender.  It usually ends up getting in the way.  SO many excuses!  Well, I shushed those voices and just “got it done”.  Now, I’m 10 pieces closer to the end of my “next action”!

So even though I haven’t actively worked on a UFO, I have made a little progress!

10 pieces ready for the next step!

10 pieces ready for the next step!

Hope your UFO’s are moving toward completion!  Happy Quilting, Mary

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