Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Quilt Tops for Missouri and Alabama Tornado Victims

I have no excuses.  Just haven't been in the mood for sewing or posting.  Allowing too much anxiety get the best of me, I suppose.  

But things are looking up.  Each time I interact with my wonderful quilt guild friends I get recharged.  At our last guild meeting I helped out with gathering quilt tops that we are sending to the towns that were hit by tornadoes a few months ago.  These people lost everything, including their fabric stores.  I know, that may seem trivial to some...but I get it.

So Brenda thought it would be a great idea if we collected quilt tops and use the money we didn't give away as a scholarship to a quilt guild in Missouri and one in Alabama.  We put the word out in our newsletter and above is the response we got at our quarterly meeting.

The generosity is amazing.  Not only did we get quite a few more quilt tops, but our ladies also donated probably 1,000 yards of fabric.  We're only sending the quilt tops to the guilds, but that fabric will not go to waste.  We have four circles that primarily do philanthropic quilts and the fabric will be divvied up equally so they can continue their good work.

One of our guild members, Lana, was making the journey to Joplin, Missouri with Central Church to help in the relief effort and we were able to get the check to her in time to present it to the president of The Town and Country Guild in Joplin.

What a wonderful group of women I have surrounded myself with.  I'm so very blessed.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Gathering Quilt Tops

Couldn't ask for a better day...

Brenda hauled Julia and me to Summerlin to pick up quilt tops from 2 nice women who don't even belong to our guild.  We are collecting quilt tops to send to a couple of quilt guilds that were ravaged by the recent tornadoes that recently hit the US.  Brenda read about sending anything sewing related to these guilds on "some blog".  I'm thinking it was Lollyquilts, but she says no.  Neither of us can remember much these days it seems...old age?  Perhaps.  Menopause is my excuse and I'm sticking to it.  Brenda doesn't have an excuse because she thinks I'm wrong no matter what...which I probably am.

Brenda put the word out to our quilt guild that we were collecting quilt tops, etc., and we figured we'd be lucky if we gathered maybe 100 tops after collecting at our upcoming guild meeting.  Well today we acquired 121 quilts from these 2 women alone!  Score!

These lovely women, like most quilters I've met, were so deep-down wonderful and kind (not to mention prolific) it almost leaves me speechless...almost.  Geez, I doubt I could make even 50 quilt tops in my lifetime, let alone hundreds which is exactly what we saw in our first lovely lady's garage.  She parted with about two full boxes and our second wonderful lady handed over another 30 tops.  Majority of these quilts included backing fabric.  One of these quilt tops made by the second woman was larger than king size.  Amazing.

Before we left, we chatted for a bit with each of them.  I'm always interested in listening to people, I just love to hear their stories.  I only got a small glimpse into these women, but that was enough though, the spoken word is overrated in circumstances such as these.  I gathered enough to feel who these women really are just by being in their kind presence.  

We ended our visits with hugs initiated by Brenda.  I joined in and got not only a hug, but a kiss on the cheek from each!   Made my day.  Funny, Brenda commented that she was glad Jules and I were along because she doesn't feel like she's very personable in situations like that, but I told her it seems just the opposite what with all the hugging going on.  Anyway, we made a good team and much was accomplished on this short trip.

I had intended to take photos of these most generous women, but I forgot to even pull my camera out.  Oh well, if they're anything like me, they don't want their photo taken without a little time to prep beforehand.  

It was a fine afternoon that ended with all of us getting iced drinks at The Coffee Bean and Tea House where I saw this posted just as we walked in:

Simple and pleasant days like this already remind me of how awesome life is, but this posting was a nice reminder to savor the moment.



Friday, May 20, 2011

Wow, how did I let so much time slip by?  And here it is, the end of the world tomorrow.  Not too sure how much I believe in anybody knowing when the end will come, but what I do believe is that I should live my life as if today is my last no matter what. 

I have been consciously trying to think happy thoughts, replacing the angry or hurtful ones that creep in all too easily and letting the people I care about most know how much they mean to me. 

Busy, busy, busy trying to pull my quilt show committee together.  Almost there, one key player fell into place today.  Only two more to go and I should be set. 

I'm going to try to document much of the quilt show planning and preparation.  We have a lot of great ideas that seem like they will actually come to fruition.  Apparently, from what a few members have told me, I have stirred up a bit of much needed enthusiasm in our 2012 quilt show.  Every time I hear this or when I speak to someone who seems revved up, it just spurs me on to get even more excited. 

Joining the Desert Quilters of Nevada Quilt Guild has literally changed my life.  I've never met a nicer, kinder group of people anywhere.  I'm going to work my hardest to make them proud of our quilt show.

So even if it is the end of the world, at least I can go knowing that someone other than my daughter and husband actually care about me.  Seriously, life-changing stuff has been happening here.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

I Made It Through March....Well, Kind Of.

March is a tough month for me.  That's my excuse for not blogging this entire month.  Even though I had a lot to write about...quilt show beginning, middle and end, committing to being chairperson of the 2012 quilt show (I'll eventually have plenty to write about with that bit of news), etc.  But, overall, March is a tough month.  My dad was born and died in March.  My sweet mother-in-law died last March and over the past month my husband has become almost completely debilitated from a knee and shoulder injury.  You'd think that would be enough, right?  Well no...

Now for yet another inauspicious memory to add to March:  My oldest girlfriend told me that she has stage 4 kidney cancer. 

This all sounds so superstitious, as if a certain time of the year draws to it the crummiest stuff that can happen.  I'm not superstitious about anything, so I suppose I should just let this feeling of dread go. 

Hopefully next year I will be so engrossed in running the quilt show that March will just breeze by.

See?  This is why I just didn't even bother blogging in March at all.  Too sad, too depressing. 

Tomorrow begins a new month, a new chance at some happiness.  No where to go but up...

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


March is the toughest month, has been for 12 years now and last year's events made it all that much tougher. 

Julia woke me up this morning, about two minutes before my alarm was set to go off.  I was dreaming of my dad.  How I wish I had those two extra minutes.  That is the first time I feel like I've dreamed in ages.  I know I dream, but apparently I haven't had much worth remembering lately.  This dream was memorable and, I believe, quite possibly significant.

But I don't have time for that now.  Must get to the convention center in Henderson and help pull the quilt show together.  My main job is making sure the troops have food for the day.  I'm actually not too nervous about this, I figure I've done the best I can and am as prepared as possible.  Whatever happens...happens.

Does this point to my emotional wellness or simply more delusional thoughts?  Time will tell.


Friday, February 25, 2011

Catch 22 - Double Edged Sword - Mixed Blessings

Currently this is what my life consists of:

Can you believe it?  WhiteOut?  I was so thankful to find an old...and I mean OLD....bottle of the stuff in with my craft paints.  Hard enough to read my writing on a plain piece of paper, on WhiteOut?...what a mess!

Above is just a sample of my trying to organize my volunteers for the quilt show that is just around the corner.  I think (I hope and pray) that I finally got all of my volunteers in place, no more changes to be made.  One thing I do enjoy is the interaction I have had with all of these wonderful women.  Great stories, lots of good advice..  I've spent way too much time on the phone butterfly that I am.  I know I will miss this interaction once the show is over, but I think I've made a few friends in the process. 

Call me crazy, but I'm rethinking chairing next year's quilt show.  I have a lot of ideas of how to better organize things, possibly make the show into a larger happening.  Considering we're the only quilt show in Vegas, it should be a big deal, a bigger deal than it is.  Lots to think about.  Need to see where my Jules is at with her extracurricular activities before I commit to anything though.

I have two quilts of my own that will be in the quilt show.  Just yesterday I got this weird feeling in the pit of my stomach.  It occurred to me that I might be really off-base thinking that my quilts are good enough to even show.  Yeesh.  I hate it when reality sinks in.  I much prefer to live in my little world, all warm and cozy with my delusions of grandeur.

Anywho, I'm helping Jules finish up the quilt I forced her to make she made for the quilt show and decided it was time to buy myself this little gadget:

Admiring my little bowl?  I made it.  Jealous of my never ending talents?  You should be.  lol.
Seriously, I hope who ever invented this is a millionaire!  An amazing invention that is so helpful!  I do take umbrage with the name, but I'm a freak like that.  Yeah, yeah, artistic license...still Kwik Klip?  Okay, maybe it's kind of catchy, I'll give it that.  Still it bugs's all the years of transcription...I can't help myself.

Maybe it just brings back images of my husband describing how he is going to force me to open a craft store called "Karyn's Kountry Krafts".  He knows all the right buttons to push with me, I tells ya.  Still, puts a smile on my face.  Love that man dearly for always trying to make me laugh.

It's late and I've picked up a chill.  We're expecting snow at 2,500 feet tomorrow.  So is much of California.  Too weird.  Darn global warming.  Must drag my weary bones to bed.  G'nite.


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Heart Block Redo

I was really bugged by the way my first foundation paper pieced heart came out without a point at the bottom (no one to blame but myself)...

When at first you don't succeed...

The second one came out much better.  It's much more delicate looking, especially with the pointy bottom.  I put a lot more effort into putting the fabrics together this time too, and I think it shows.

Live and learn. 

Last night I remembered that I had purchased a book from Carol Doak when she spoke at last fall's DQN quarterly quilt guild meeting.  I wish I had had the money to take a class with her when she was in town, but such is life. 

Now that I've finally done some paper piecing I feel pretty confident that I can reproduce some of the beautiful blocks in this book.  I recalled Carol mentioning the use of a postcard or thin cardboard when bending the paper back to trim the fabric.  I quickly looked it up in the book and I gave that a try this time.  Boy did it work!

Her book also gives the proper amount of fabric each star will take and how big to cut the "scraps" for each part of the block.  When I finally get a chance to focus on something other than quilt show duties and transcription, I definitely will work in a "chain" fashion by sewing one part of the block on each block at a time, instead of trying to finish each block before moving to the next.  And, I'll definitely either use newsprint or vellum instead of regular copy paper.  Foundatoin paper piecing totally rocks!