Friday, July 31, 2015


I've been busy working on Jess's fabrics! For a while, the project had a sudden deadline of today, which really made me get in gear, but I was fearing I wouldn't be able to complete it in time. Thankfully, the need for that deadline changed, so I was off the hook. Whew! So I went from a lot of pressure... back to enjoying sewing again. Deadlines are good in that they spur me into action, but they don't really make for fun sewing.

Here are a couple of progress photos I've posted on Instagram in the last couple of days. This one was after finally completing cutting it out, which is always the worst part, in my opinion. I should've counted how many pieces are in this pile!

I took this next one after fusing interfacing to all these pieces. It sure becomes a bigger job to make a bag (sorry, Kris... it's not a quilt) out of quilting cotton than it is out of home decor weight fabric, having to fuse all that interfacing on to make it substantial enough.

This next photo I took during the cutting process, just for fun.

Yeah, I'm rather proud of that designing daughter of mine. :)

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


When I showed you my new Gadget Guard, I forgot I'd taken pics of it being worn, for size reference. For some reason, my Photostream quit working, so they didn't end up on my computer when I was writing that post. But I remembered after the post went live, so I thought I'd add them now (after logging out and back into my iCloud account, which corrected the problem).

Courtney took this first picture for me. She does a great job with photos. And she follows instructions well... see, she cut off my head, just like I told her to. :-D 

Then I took one of her, just for fun. She did not ask me to cut off her head.

So there ya have it... it's about that big. ;)

On another subject, this arrived on Friday!

This is some of Jess's latest line of fabrics, called Typography, for Cloud9 Fabrics, that will be coming out this fall (Sept. or Oct.). It is all quilt weight cottons this time, which should make the quilters deliriously happy, as fabrics with word/letter prints seem to be very popular right now.

Sooo... am I going to make a quilt?! I guess you'll have to wait and see! (Shhh... Geneviève!) Anyway, I'm going to be very busy again, so the blog may suffer from neglect for awhile. I'll try not to totally leave you  - may even give you a peek or two - but if I'm gone, you'll know what I'm up to!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Another sighting

Sorry for the photo overload, but I couldn't help it. These just struck me as so funny. You should see all the ones I'm not posting! Ha!

Remember these photos from exactly a month ago? Well, on Saturday evening I happened to see the hen turkey (I'm sure it must be the same one) flying waaaay up into the trees again, followed by her 5 (remaining) babies. I had to go out and see how they would tuck under her wings this time, since they've grown an awful lot in the last month.

Here she is, with two of the chicks, right after landing up there. She's kind of panting from the long flight. (I hope you can see the pics okay... you can click on them for a bit larger view, but I didn't want to make them too big, with this many photos.)

"Wait, I think I see a better spot up there."

"Follow me!"

Consultation going on below as to suitability. I love the silhouettes!

"You think this is high enough?"

"Okay, this'll do. We're staying right here... settle down!"

"Time to tuck in, kids."

"This isn't working like it used to!"

"Squeeze together."

"Where's George? That kid's always fooling around somewhere!" (I could hear the 5th chick peeping in a nearby branch. They still peep like tiny babies yet.)

"Look for George, will ya?"

"This just isn't working...."

"Okay... everybody up and turn around!"

"Oh, mercy. Settle down, kids! George!!!"

"Snuggle in close now and go to sleep. George will have to fend for himself. Again."

And that is how I left them. Not quite as snuggly as in the other post, huh? LOL

Crazy birds. But quite entertaining at times. ;)

Friday, July 24, 2015

Gadget Guard #3

If you, along with Jenny, guessed that my latest sewing project was from a pattern by Erin Erickson, you're right. This is another Gadget Guard, of which I've made two before.

I had decided that since I'm always dragging my iPad outdoors to take photos (often along with the DSLR), it would be very handy to have a bag to carry it in, one with a cross body strap so I could hang it over my neck to free up my hands (for carrying cat food, water, and/or whatever). I know of no better pattern than the Gadget Guard, which in my opinion is PERFECT. Since that pattern has no strap, though, I simply used one of Erin's other patterns for how-to's on placement for attaching the D-ring, etc. So here's my latest Gadget Guard with a removable strap:

Since I knew I'd be dragging it all over outside and it'd likely be getting dirty, I decided denim would be a good fabric for it, so I used up an old pair of shorts I knew I'd never wear again. I also lined it with denim from an old pair of jeans. Both denims are soft from wear but have plenty of life left in them. I even used the same shorts for the strap... just to see if I could do it. I did... and there are only 7 splices in the whole thing - ha!

I love this pattern because thanks to Erin's formula for any size gadget, it makes for a perfect fit. See how nice and snugly my iPad fits? Yet it's not tight, so it slides in and out easily. Just right!

I didn't need the big pocket that comes with the pattern. All I wanted was a very small pocket for holding my Easy Macro lens. The how-to for this pocket was also an idea by Erin, modified just a bit. It uses the front of the bag as the back side of the pocket, and the front piece of the pocket is lined so there are no raw edges. I wanted the zipper flat, so I kind of improvised that. It doesn't look quite professional, but it serves its purpose and I'm happy with it.

As I was planning the bag, I couldn't help dressing it up just a little with some of Jess's ribbons, of which I seem to have an ample supply (but lack ideas for what to use them on). Since I take a lot of "critter" photos, I thought the kittens and squirrels would be quite appropriate. The squirrel one goes around the back side, too, which is otherwise plain.

I love my bag! It's already been outside hanging over my neck numerous times, and I've appreciated having the iPad camera so readily available when I come across a great photo opp!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Crafting with Courtney

Courtney was here for the day yesterday, and she happened to bring her "sewing machine", along with all of her felt supplies. I guess she had plans - or hopes, huh? ;) So we worked on a fun little project.

Here's some of the process. Can you tell what's happening? Look at our pieces and piles!

Here's a big clue:

And here is the outcome:

Yes, it's a koala, and she's (it's a girl, according to C) about this big:

I was prepared for a stuffie project this time, as a few weeks ago I'd come across this tutorial and thought it was pretty cute. Courtney thought so, too... in fact, she loved it!

I printed the templates, and Courtney cut them all out and also cut almost all of the fleece and felt pieces herself. The tutorial calls for all hand stitching, but I thought it'd work to use her little machine (plus save a lot of time). However, there were too many layers in places, so we decided it would be best to sew it on my sewing machine. That went quickly, and we both did the stuffing of the body and limbs. Then a little hot gluing (by me) finished it off. It was a fun project, and Courtney happily took the koala home to add to her ever-growing collection.

I finished my own sewing project the night before, too, but haven't had time for photos yet. Hopefully I'll be able to show it to you tomorrow. Here's a little peek at it in the very early stages. Any guesses?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

They're growing

Those turkey babies are getting big fast. I don't know if this is the same bunch I saw in the tree or not, as there were at least 8 of those, and I've only ever seen 5 around here since then. Maybe something ate the others. I wouldn't feel bad at all about that. I hope they made meals for my cats. Heaven knows, these are certainly eating enough of my cats' food lately. Aargh. They're as bad as the 'coons, except that they drink all the cat water instead making mud of it.

They're not very afraid, either. I come across them quite often, and they just slowly meander off, sticking close to their mama. At least I haven't seen any others around, small or big.

On a better subject... I'm sewing! Just about finished with something for myself... will show you soon. Then rumor has it that the samples of Jess's new fabrics have come in, so hopefully I'll be working on projects with them very soon - yay!

Monday, July 20, 2015

This made my day!

A couple of evenings ago, I decided to wander around outside after supper with the camera and iPad, just to see what I might find to take photos of. I almost switched from my zoom lens to the regular one on the DSLR, but for some reason decided not to.

First I saw this milkweed flower, which seemed extra bright and pretty in the golden hour sunshine.

Then I turned around, and much to my surprise, I saw this staring at me!

Was I ever glad I'd left the zoom lens on! It wasn't terribly far away, but the zoom was needed for shots like these.

It posed nicely, then trotted off for a different pose. Very cooperative subject, it was.

Such a dainty, lovely creature! I love how the spotted area of its coat looks like a blanket was laid across its back.

It stomped its little foot at me a couple of times, then off it went, showing off its feathery white tail.

What fun shots! Yes, my day was made! These are some of my favorite photos ever, and I think I'm going to print them all.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Catching with Courtney

Can you tell what Courtney and I did on Wednesday?

If you guessed caught butterflies, you're right. Well, sort of. We caught a couple of moths for her new collection. We didn't see very many butterflies, and the ones we did see were very elusive. :)

In the area where Courtney's standing above, we were after this monarch.

It was enjoying the nectar from some purple clover.

After I'd taken a few photos (what's a butterfly hunt without photos, right?) and looked closely at them, I noticed this poor thing was quite damaged. Look at her wing!

We decided to let her go and hoped for a better specimen for the collection. We also hoped she would lay an egg on the milkweed plants that were near so we'd have a caterpillar soon.

We did see one other monarch but couldn't get close to that one. We also found what we hope is a monarch egg on a milkweed leaf. Time will tell....

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Patches' kittens

These are the wild ones! I don't know whether this first one is a male or female yet, but it sure has some cool stripes!

The rest are females, obviously, because they're all calicos. They all have some sore eye issues, but I can't treat them if I can't get close to them. They don't seem to be infected, just more sore around the outsides of the eyes. Autumn had that, too, for a while, but hers is cleared up now, so hopefully these will, too.

The one above and the next one are quite similar, but the one below is definitely darker. She also has a bit of the silver tabby striping, where the one above is more tabby-like.

And last but not least, another calico, more like Autumn but without the long hair.

She seems to be quite a sassy little thing. :)

We haven't named any of these yet, despite having that whole list of names remaining to choose from. It's hard to name them when we hardly ever see them, but now that they're around more, I guess we'd better get on it. Courtney and I will have to consult soon!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Kitten update

It must be time for an update on Rainbow's kittens. Goodness, they're 2 months old already! They're doing very well, and I've been letting them outside for a little while every day now. Here's Smoke, as he's trying to decide whether to take the plunge over the threshold or not. I love his blue eyes and little white paws!

Clementine is by far the most adventurous of them all. I no more than get the door open, and she's out exploring!

Once Smoke gets out there, they have a blast together.

Cinnamon and Snowy are a little more hesitant about going out. Snowy, I think, is going to have pale orange ears and tail. Cinnamon, interestingly, has silver tabby-like stripes going down her back, just like her older sister, Mia! You can click on this photo below to see them better.

Here she is again, enjoying (playing with, not eating) the young striped gopher that her mama brought.

Patches has now moved her babies into the machine shed. They're very wild, but gradually getting used to my presence, even though not letting me get close to them. A zoom lens is very necessary for pics of them. I'll show them to you next time!