Teal Dragon Quilts

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Another year over

One of my favorite lines from John Lennon’s Happy Christmas.  Well, we still have a few more weeks to get “things” done.  I plan on using every minute!  This is my favorite time of the year on most days.  It’s time to start planning (wish I could have hearts popping out of that word…planning)  the new year.  

In times past, this has been a busy season with no time for planning.  Gigs every weekend from Thanksgiving until Christmas, with rehearsals on most nights.  The life of a free lance musician!  I’m retired now and it’s just starting to become real.

I like being busy.  I like having deadlines, even though it is a love/hate relationship.  But not having to get out when it is cold and rainy is very nice.  I’m trying to figure out how to stay motivated when I have no deadlines.  I do have a few parties that things have to get done before.  My family is getting together and trading gifts for the first time in a while, so I do have to do some shopping/sewing.

I have played my piano everyday this week.  I love my piano, it doesn’t hurt to play and it sounds good.  I’ve tried the violin, but not so good.  I really don’t want to put it aside forever.  I love violin, I love violin music, I love playing the violin.  Sad thoughts.  Playing the violin was a battle I fought with my parents.  They supported my efforts, but I had to fight for getting the lessons.  Piano and Violin lessons were a little above my parents pay grade until I was in high school.  I’m not ready to give up.  Maybe I’ll try some Christmas carols.

Quilting, quilting was all kinds of fun.  Last board meeting for the 2018 QGGH board.  They did a fantastic job and I have loved working with them.  My bee had their Christmas Party and what fun.  (streamers shooting out of that word…fun) We also decided on what challenges we were going to have, and of course I signed up for every one of them!  Coming up is the Guild Holiday Party.  The big thing is our Opportunity Quilt will be drawn for and I will be done with that chair’s responsibilities.  I’ve loaded our pics from 2018 into PhotoStory for slide presentation.  It’s potluck and I still don’t know what I will bring.  Hoping to have a UFO done for the last quarter.

Life is good, Family and Friends are good, Freckles is perfect.  This week, more piano practice and 2019 planning!

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OK

So where have I been for the past year?  Right here, just not blogging.  Not doing a whole lot of quilting, either.  But that, is about to change!  It’s Christmas.  Time for new beginnings, a new way to look at the world, hope abounds.

I have been busy with QGGH, a quilt guild in which I am a member, as well as the IT guru.  Ha!  Actually, it is my dream job, speaking of jobs, I don’t have any.  No more real estate, and no more symphony.  I am officially retired!

I’ve also been busy with a couple of bees.  Both are wonderful.  One has all kinds of challenges.  It is a CHALLENGE to not get behind!  The other we get together and sew.  Both are doing retreats.  One is coming up in February and the other in May.

I am battling the weight demon again.  This time…this time I am successful! (a little positive affirmation.) I am trying an app to help keep me on track.  It has me on a 1200 calories a day, but tomorrow, I’m finding out how to increase to maybe 1600.  I’ve yet to hit the 1200 mark, but I am loosing weight and feeling better.  (I’m writing, right?!). The app tries to help make small adjustments, so far it is working.

If you remember from my last post, I had 7 boxes of fabric!  They are gone!  My house still has mountains, but progress is being made.  Old insulation out, new plumbing with PEX pipes, new insulation in.  Next up is the roof.  I have completed several UFOs.

One was a T-Shirt quilt for a niece and I went to Colorado to deliver it to her.  FUN!

This seems to be a long post, so I’m stopping, for now.  Going to try to post a little more often with pics.

God Bless You and Keep You!

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More than a year

I’ve missed blogging, but it is definitely low man on the totem pole!  Between selling the Tiki house, yes we sold it 😦 and trying to de-clutter the Houston House, along with being the IT Chair for QGGH, Queen bee of my bee, playing in the PPO, and assisting real estate agents with their web presence my life has been full.  I always have an “itch” to blog, so today, on this Saturday before Easter Sunday, I will try to get back into blogging.

Dolly Brooke

I finished this one last month, Dolly Brooke and it has been given to my niece.  This is one of the 2 UFO’s I’ve finished in 2018.  I’m really close on the 3rd and hoping I finish it next week.

Besides re-modeling our house, which is on hold, finishing UFO’s is my focus.  I’m hoping to make a HUGE dent in my triple digit stash.

Speaking of Stash, I’ve been going thru mine and either selling or giving away.  I have 7 boxes of fabric to go thru, to sell or give.  After Harvey hit Houston, I was ready to minimize my “stuff”.  Luckily, we had no damage from the storm or flood waters.  But getting all my “stuff” off the floor was a struggle and then to hear tales of flood waters shifting everything so even if it was off the floor, it may have been knocked back down; I really wanted less “stuff”.

Good news, I have a little more space for NEW fabric!  Haha!

Have a blessed Easter and check out my friend’s post on “Jesus, You are not a Building”  It is worth the read.  It touched my heart and inspires me to be better.

Have a blessed Easter!

 

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Been busy!

Humming along.  Lots of progress with my quilting.  I almost got stuck on the quilt for a cousin, but like magic, it got done.  No, really, like magic.  The quilt uses huge blocks that are made up of 16 smaller blocks.  I needed 6 of the big blocks to make the quilt.  I did a lot of sewing a to b and c to d, then b to c.  I then had rows for the blocks.  Next was 1 to 2 and 3 to 4, then 2 to 3.  I then had the big blocks.  I had 6 of everything, 6 a’s, 6 ‘bs, etc.  When I’m sewing it seems like a lot, so I count how many I have done and how many to go.  Something like this…One, six to go; two, four to go, three, three to go.  Then the magic happens!  four, TWO to go.  The small blocks are only 6 1/2″ so it’s not like there is a whole lot to stitch that will take hours.  But in my mind…

I have a book called “The Inner Game of Music”, it’s modeled after the one titled “The Inner Game of Golf”.  Maybe I should do one “The Inner Game of Quilting”?  The books are about ways to be better thru the use of the brain.  With music one of the ways was to THINK about practice.  In detail..Imagine holding the instrument, playing each note. Visualizing.

The “little voice” inside my head is a fear monger.  I shush mine with loud positive affirmations.  I’ve been successful this month!  Hope you are too!  Enjoy the pictures of what I have done since my last post!

A UFO for my Grandniece.

Top pieced at Boll Weevils with help of a friend!

Quilt for cousin. I have enough blocks to do another.

Comforter quilt I used to practice free motion roses.

Fabric Sculpture, really fun project, finished UFO

Mountain in den is going down.

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How are your goals going?

How are your goals going?  Still inspired, or has the new in the new year worn off?  Me, I’m still inspired, at least with my quilting goals.  Let me share.  🙂

Quilt for Comforters

Quilt for Comforters

I have completed TWO UFO’s.  I am so tickled, I’m bouncing.  The third one is lined up and ready to go and it should be an easy one. It’s from a Susan Else class I took 3 or 4 years ago.  It’s already almost done.  The guild website is updated as of 2/26.  Today I will add the newsletter, directory, and some workshop pictures.  I have a calendar with scheduled posts for Facebook and MyGrove (a social app that is private, pretty cool actually).  I consider myself very active in the QGGH.  Besides being the webmaster, I also am the Advertising Coordinator, (so if you want to advertise in our newsletter….), and Circulation Chair.  I also prepare the slides for our meetings.  I am the Volunteer Coordinator for the show in May.

UFO started in 2005 or 2006

UFO started in 2005 or 2006

 

 

Quilts promised, I completed the customer quilt on time and am working on a lap quilt for a cousin’s granddaughter.  I’m hoping to have the top together by the weekend.  One of my UFO’s was a quilt for Comforters (yay!).  I’ve been to most of the Boll Weevil meetings this year.  I need to finish the quilts I have from past Boll Weevils, before taking more….

Blogging has been sporadic, but I haven’t really had much to share.  Hoping to have a more steady stream.  We’ll see.   My Learning Spanish is gung ho, then it slows down.  I think the issue is not enough repetition in the lessons.  Or else, it’s not sinking in.  Maybe it’s too many words to remember and I need to use them more…I will figure it out, because I want to be bilingual!  Then I want to learn to speak Cajun French!

That is the end of my goal list.  Haven’t done anything with health, music, and Brigetta.  But the year is young.

God Bless!

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Kiss the Frog

Well, what a whirlwind to get my last 3 projects, DONE!  Successful am I!  Woke up this morning not really motivated to DO anything.  Was wondering, why?  I’m on a roll, come on Mary Lou, let’s get going!  What’s the problem? Ummm, what’s the problem?  Am I the type person that has to have a deadline to get moving?  Or was I just sleepy and wanting more sleep?  I was really sleepy when I woke up this morning.  Most mornings I am, but I keep waking and have really weird dreams, so I give up and get up.

Goal for this morning, figure out why I’m not motivated.  Too much housework? nah, Thursdays are a light day for housework.  Well, what do I need to get done?  Slides for the meeting.  Clothes to launder.  Practice for Pasadena Philharmonic.  Taxes…o h, y e a h.  TAXES.  But wait, I just need to gather the tax docs going to the IRS, like W-2’s, Insurance, and interest.  Pshaw, that’s easy.  Ok, feeling a little inspiration here.

In real estate there is a saying, most likely in all sales, Kiss the Frog first thing in the morning.  For those that don’t get it, do the task you like the least first, then the rest of the day will be a prince.  But me, that’s not enough to get me out of bed, and puppy was sleeping hard, no help there….I worked on my Cotton Candy blocks first.  Then I moved on to taxes, finished that step (tomorrow, it’s look for receipts.) and the rest of my day has been fun.

Hope all your frogs bring you prince like days!  God Bless

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Working my Plan

Feeling pretty good about where I am in my goals for 2017.  I’ve finished 2 UFO’s.  One is for Comforters, so that one is a two for one.  Not sure what my next UFO will be, most likely my grand niece’s.  Right now I started a “promised” quilt for my cousin’s granddaughter.  Hoping I have lots of time to work on it this week and it may be ready to quilt by the weekend.  I finished the embroidery stitches for my Jane Sassaman piece, Mending Heart.  It is basted and ready to quilt.  I want to hurry and get it done, but I want to make my self take the time to practice quilting stitches.  I’ve planned out what I want in each section.  So after I’ve done the 9 patches for the disappearing 9 patch, I’ll quilt Mending Heart.

I have 2 birthday blocks and a Shoebox block to do.  This is the last month of our Shoebox challenge.  We start another in April.  My fabric for the next challenge is ready to go!  I need to finish 2 bee comforter quilts to be up on that goal.  I will focus on one and see where it leads.

I was gone last weekend to visit a friend I’ve known since childhood.  I stopped my Spanish lessons and haven’t started back, but maybe tonight might be a good time to start again.  I’ve been practicing for my concert in Pasadena.  I always feel so empowered when I have a good practice session.  My shoulder is holding up, but then I don’t practice hours.  Helps having just one orchestra and not 2 or more.

The website I manage is up to date with all the pictures and events.  I’ve added the pages I needed to add.  It is ready for the next meeting.  Taxes are in the process of being done.  I’ve done the challenging parts, the rest is just fill in the spread sheet.

One month gone and the second is half way through.  Where are you in your goals?  I’m still pumped about getting mine done.  🙂

God Bless!

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What’s next?!

I have two quilts that were UFO’s that are almost done.  They should both be done by Sunday.  Now where do I go.  What project will I pick?  I have several that need to be done, and all that I want to do….

I have 2 quilts I promised to my mother’s cousin for her granddaughter that she wants by May.  It would be nice to get these done before the deadline and May is only 4 months away.  Then there is my niece’s t-shirt quilt she gets for graduating from high school.  She is now a sophomore in college…

Beginning of Allison's quilt

Beginning of Allison’s quilt

Grand-Niece's Quilt

Grand-Niece’s Quilt

I also have my Grand-niece’s Big Girl quilt for when she turned 7.  She will be 9? in June.  Almost time for her little brother to reach 7!

Then there is my brother’s quilt.  I created the design and have been working on it for a few years, now.

How do I decide?  Any suggestions?  I’ve thought about splitting my time with these, but I still have Charity quilts and bee challenges to do as well.

So then I think maybe I should do the one furthest along.  That would be my Grand-niece’s, but then I run the risk of running out of time to do those quilts for my mother’s cousin.  Year and a half ago it seemed so doable when I said yes….

I think I will do the one for my mother’s cousin.  I have the fabric and will do the disappearing 9-Patch.

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Moving on!

I finally finished the customer quilt I’ve been working on this week.  Since I insist on waiting to the last minute, I had to focus on this quilt only, so basically nothing else got done.  I did have a rehearsal and I did sew with my bee.  My husband did not go hungry and my puppy got his walk everyday, but everything else, well I’m going to be very busy catching up for the next few days.

So the question is, why do I do this?  Why do I put things off.  Granted, I’m better than I was.  The deadline for the quilt was the 31st and I’m done on the 28th.  But why didn’t I start it at the beginning of January?  I think it has a lot to do with the little voice inside my head, the negative one that says “I can’t do this or that”  Working on changing that little voice, or creating a louder voice that is positive will go a long way in stopping my procrastination.  Time to brush off those positive affirmations!

I’ve read that procrastination is due to perfectionism.  The logic being if I put it off long enough, then it just needs to get done and there won’t be enough time to worry about perfection.

But I think I am a closet perfectionist (shh!)  To see my house, my truck, my clothes, someone is always straightening a collar(kind of embarrassing) you would never know I have perfectionist tendencies.

It’s all about the journey!

God Bless!

 

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Power to get it done!

Let me tell you about the quilting bee I am in.  The ladies are just awesome.  We have a group from the bee that meets twice a month to work on Quilts for Charity.  Most go to our Comforters in the QGGH Guild, but we do other projects, as well.  At the last bee meeting, we discussed doing an Opportunity Quilt for our guild.  This was the January meeting.  Our guild meets the 3rd Tuesday and Friday.  By the Tuesday meeting, my bee had the design, signup sheets and a sample block.  Yesterday, most of us in the bee, we have a few that work during the day, but most of us got together, pooled our batiks and made kits for the guild members who signed up.  5 Bucks a Yard provided the background fabric.  We sorted, ironed, cut and stuffed the kits.  We were done by 2.  Way to go Cotton Pickin’!  I am proud to be a member our Bee.

I hope you experience the friendship of a close group of women.  Being an introvert, I don’t usually do well in crowds and was envious of my mother having tons of friends, well not really envious, but I just didn’t think I could have that many best friends.  well, i was wrong.  I am truly blessed with amazing friends!

God Bless!

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