Thursday, July 23, 2009

Some Quilting and Some Ruthie

Our cooler-than-normal-for-northeastern-Illinois summer has been GREAT for quilting. There have been very few days that are too warm to hand quilt, and on those I was able to applique.

This week, I finished Katie's quilt. Simple and warm, I hope that she likes it and it keeps her cozy through their Montana winter.
Here is a picture of the border, the design is more easily seen since since I haven't washed out the marking, yet. I've been really enjoying these all over type designs in my borders lately. As much as I love fancy motifs, these all over ones fill the space and frame out the quilt nicely.
I now have 3 rows of Debbie's assembled, with 8 more blocks (2 more rows) to make. This one made me nervous at first, I wasn't sure of the colors but I'm really happy with how it's coming out, so far. It's a pretty simple design and I'm trying to decide how to quilt it. I think that I'll be outlining the applique (as I do on all of my applique) and then freehanding stippling in the spaces.
Just minutes after putting the last stitch in the binding of Katie's quilt, I was clearing my table to baste Emma's. Thinking ahead, I pieced the back of hers when I sewed the binding to the front of Katie's quilt so as soon as the binding was done I could begin the basting process. Emma's is now in the hoop and progressing nicely.

If I continue at this pace, I could be just about done with my Christmas quilting by the time we hit Labor Day, which would be thrilling! With other projects waiting in the wings, the thought of finishing early and working on other projects, projects that can be put aside to do various other small Christmas gifts, is almost hard for me to comprehend as I usually spend from September or October through December working like a madwoman to finish for Christmas.

Waiting for "time" are several projects. One is the shade and cornice box cover for my sewing room window. The blocks are finished and need to be assembled. I may assemble and baste the cornice box cover soon as I have scraps of batting that should be just the right size.

Also waiting are two new paper foundation projects. One is a strip quilt for the couch by the sewing room window, this one has two different sized strips and more background for nice quilting spaces. The blocks are also a bit smaller. These are printed and ready for me, I need to draw on the sewing lines and trim them before I begin. I also need to cut up some more scraps. I have a lot of various light background scraps that are hard to use up, so I should be able to use up quite a bit of that as well.

The other paper foundation project is being made with triangle paper. This one has 3 different sizes of half square triangles and will be another great scrap quilt. One nice thing about these quilts is I can sew for as little or long a time as I feel like on my machine and make some progress. While our weather has been wonderful, I imagine a hot spell will come at some point and machine sewing is a really good activity for hot weather. I can sit still with a fan blowing on me and still be productive!

There is also the shade for our bedroom, that for sure will be waiting until after the holidays, it will take quite a bit of concentration and planning and winter will be a great time for that.

Of course, there is also the posy and celtic quilt, which has been calling me of late. I still have to sew down the second side of some of the appliqued braid. I'm also searching for just the right fabric to make a celtic design in the outer border, and am hoping to find one that incorporates most, if not all, of the colors in the quilt.

There are not really enough hours in the day to do all I want to do. I've often said I wish that I didn't have to sleep, but my family did because that would mean many uninterrupted hours every night!

And now for Ruthie. She is doing just great. Her language skills and vocabulary seem to be improving daily. She used to be more quiet when other people were around, but has gotten more used to some of the kids' friends and will engage them by showing them her toys or one of her new skills. Here she is with Lucas, who will be 9 tomorrow, on the swing in our backyard. Unfortunately, poor Lucas has the same trouble with brightness as I do, and all the pictures I took of him out with Ruthie that day he has the same scrunched up face.Here she is eating ice cream. She LOVES ice cream and we have to make sure she's finished her meal before we mention the word or she's DONE and ready for ice cream!

Ruthie has been wearing this scarf around her neck quite often these days, it makes me hot to just look at her. This day, she wanted Jonathan to put it on her like a hat.
When I know she's tired, settling her in on my little couch will usually mean she'll sleep pretty quickly. She will often ask for a "pilolow" and a "banket."
And finally, whenever Rebekah is cutting anyone's hair, Ruthie wants hers done, too. Usually we trim bangs or a bit off of the back, but last time I told Rebekah she could do whatever she wanted and to think about it. It was getting quite long and really needed something, whether just some taken off the bottom, or a "style." Here is what she did.

She had about 7 inches cut off of it, I nearly cried! I love the ponytails and will miss them, but this cut sure is cute on her. It's stacked a bit in the back and the bit of curl is because Rebekah curled Rachel's hair that day, so she had to have some curls, too. I'm hoping she'll start to let me use a blow dryer and curling iron on her occasionally.

That same day, we took her to Olive Garden with a gift card we'd gotten a few months ago. The other kids were all busy, so she got to go on a date with us. She was the hit of the wait staff, the cheese girl especially was just enamored with her. When our dinner came, she came back to ask if we wanted cheese on our entrees. I hadn't even put food on Ruthie's plate, yet, but the girl asked her if she wanted cheese and she smiled really big and said "yes!" and the girl happily obliged, making a little pile of grated cheese on her plate.

All in all, it's been a busy summer, but mostly the kind of busy I enjoy. Keeping it all together here, with lots of time for quilting. I hope that you all are having the same!

Happy Quilting!



~Bren~ said...

YOur posts are WAY too far apart, but when you do one they are jam packed with lots of good stuff. I loved every word of this one!!!!

Winona said...

Sue, I agree with Bren. I loved your post. The quilts are beautiful. You are working so fast. We have had a very cool July too. In fact, several days of record lows. It could stay like this for me. LOL Love Ruthie's new do. How pretty she looks! I hope you can continue to get Christmas gifts done quickly. It is nice to not have to be rushed during the holiday season. Have a good weekend. Our 32nd anniversary is Sat., so I guess we are going out. Won't be much quilting this weekend.(grin) Winona

Patricia said...

How fun to be getting so much quilting done! Isn't a cool summer nice? You do beautiful work.

What a sweetie Ruthie is! I love, love, love her new haircut!


Marilyn R said...

Ruthie's new haircut is adorable! Congrats on getting so far along on your Christmas gifts. I haven't thought much about what I want to make for gifts this year. Guess I had better get on the ball!