Wednesday, February 29, 2012

February 29th ~ Happy Leap Day!

Gioachino Rossini's 220th Birthday / Leap Year
Ah ... It's February 29th and Google has a tribute to
 "Gioachino Rossini — the famed Italian composer behind The Barber of Seville"
Gioachino Rossini turns 220 today, or, depending how you’re counting, he is 53 today.
As many Leap Year babies know, your 'real' birthday only happens every 4 years.

I could not resist the cuteness factor of the day with this Google Doodle. I hope you are enjoying your 'extra' day today :)

So it has been a very quick, less than 24 hours, since my last post. Thank you all for the emails of encouragement! My mom called me to offer encouragement, congratulations, and support for both the interview and the teaching the mini workshop last night. Yes, my mom does read my blog... :)  I think it is wonderful. 

So I was the 1st candidate interviewed for the position yesterday, so it will be a while before I hear back from them about the job. In the meantime, I did get a chance to network about my fiber arts passion while I was there. That will also take some time to develop. 

I did not get a chance to take any pictures last night at the Guild meeting. Ms J picked me up and we arrived a bit early, but that was wonderful. I grabbed a corner table, away from the 'maddening crowd' and set up to get ready to teach. As the guild meetings typically start at 7:30 pm and we where there at 6:45 pm I started giving my mini workshop at 7, much like the others. There where 8 of us teaching workshops last night. There was something for everyone. 

It went very well :) Ok, yes Ms G and Ms J it was fantastic, while I did not see everyone who was there at the meeting last night, those who have daughters and granddaughters with AG where the 1st to come over. I think I taught the workshop about 5 times last night. The feedback was fantastic, and I had a fun time. 

I had made the jacket an exact replica of what I do for a full size jacket, so the details that I explained to non-seamstress could be translated from quilting terms easily, giving many the opportunity to contemplate making a garment. Those who all of a sudden had a 'light bulb' moment (eyes open wide with realization that they can really do this themselves) where enough that it really registered with me that I was able to pass along something that is fun. 

 I had cut up a pair of sweatpants and a sweatshirt to make the different samples and the visual teaching aids.  These are the main parts that I had in the box above.

I also brought along a crew sweatshirt, a hoodie sweatshirt, and this jacket that has not been completed as of yet. This is the front...
 The back...
 The sleeves...

Having the examples, the sweatshirts, the miniature pieces done up at the different stages, all equaled being able to teach this in about 8 minutes or less. Explains how I taught it at least 5 times last night :)

So, yes I did have fun, I would do it again, and I would teach it as a full length class if asked. 

I was also encouraged to make a dozen or so of the doll size jackets for the boutique shop at the guild show in October... hmm, while it took about 12 hours to do the multitude of version that I made, it would not take that long to make a dozen over time... need to think about this some more. It would end up on my WIP list if I was not careful.

Now it is off to finish the baby quilt for baby M, who will be appearing in less than 35 days. Also need to finish off the basket liners...

Thank you for stopping by! Ciao for now!

J :)  

P.S. A quick reminder to all that you will be able to follow via Google Friends Connect as this is a Google supported blog. So join in and click to follow, you don't have to make it public, you can follow privately, if you wish. Thanks for stopping by :) 

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Teaching Tonight :)

It has been a major push around our house for me to get over this lingering cold. Along the way I have been telling you that I need to make display items for the mini sweatshirt jacket workshop I am teaching. Well tonight is the night and I have finished all but the printing of the handouts... It had been 10 pages long... but I have gotten it down to 4 pages. Which is a good thing...

I also needed to make the parts of the jackets and at least one completed jacket. As I am off to another interview this afternoon, I need to have it all set to go now. Let me share some pictures with you :)

This is the box with everything inside, except for the jacket right now.

I will need to teach how to make a sweatshirt jacket in 12 minutes... Something that has taken me about 12 hours to put together.

Here is some pictures of the completed American Girl Doll sweatshirt jacket. This one is going to be Miss E's AG Doll, Sammi's jacket. The pattern you see in the back is from Liberty Jane Clothing which has a collection of 18" doll clothing.
This is the front of the jacket, notice the heart shaped button for closure, rather than a zipper.
Yes Ms G I did include inseam pockets on this jacket. You will be able to check it out tonight.
The doll stand can also be purchased at the Liberty Jane Clothing Website. 
This is the back of the jacket, you can see the inseam pocket open. 
The front, the pattern, the doll stand... all ready to be shown tonight! Yea!!!

So now I can take this off of my WIP list! {{Does a Happy Dance around the dining room}}Sweetness :)

Ok, off to get ready for this afternoon and evening...

Thanks for stopping by! Ciao for now :)

J :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Among the missing this weekend...

I mentioned that I was under the weather last week... enough that I did not go out until Friday morning for a little bit. Well, I was slammed with the flu, flat on my back slammed, coughing so hard that my lungs are sore and I can't speak to long before I start to cough again. Really not a happy camper here... 

I was so medicated on Friday at my interview I did not cough the entire time I was there... stepped out the door and I started up right away. 

So how sick was I? I missed out on a lot of goings on that I normally do on the last weekend of the month... But more than anything I really missed seeing my mom, my daughter, my step-son, my daughter-in-law, the grandkids, and my 'people' since I got sick last week, Monday. Major bummer :/

In the meantime, I am trying to fit in finishing up the sweatshirt jackets for the mini-workshop I am teaching on Tuesday night. I have cut up a few sweatshirts, divided them up into sections of the instructions, and now have to finish the last of the American Girl Doll size jackets that I am making. I was going to try to make one for each niece, but being ill has prevented that from happening.

I need to take pictures of the set up on Tuesday night. I did a very quick run thru with hubby and it was less than 5 minutes long. This will work as the workshops need to be within a 15 minute window.

I almost forgot! The Blogger's BOM which posts on the 25th and the Blogger's are...

So I need to go and check out the blogger for February Amy Smart - Diary of a Quilter . Her BOM block is too cute...

I also need to pop over to the FREE Craftsy Block of the Month with Amy Gibson and finish the blocks for February before March are posted on Thursday.

Thanks for stopping by! Ciao for now :) Off to take some more meds :)

J :)

Friday, February 24, 2012

Friday, Friday, I love Friday!

I'm off to a 2nd interview this morning... still coughing my head off... sniffling... up to the eyeballs in meds... but, I really need to support my quilting habit... so I am off to try to secure this position...

In the meantime, I found this fantastic giveaway @ they are having a sweepstakes and they are giving away a Pat Sloan Starter Kit of Aurifil Thread! How sweet is that! That would be a wonderful item to win... just saying... so if you click on the link above, you will go to the giveaway. Good Luck!
The Pat Sloan Starter Kit of Aurifil Thread includes 12 spools of basic threads for machine applique and machine quilting. Pat Sloan has chosen the 12 colors she uses the most, so you get all the essentials for quilting and applique. The Aurifil spools included in the Pat Sloan Starter Kit are filled with 1422 yards each of 50 wt, 100% cotton thread. This fiber content and weight is perfect for both quilting and applique. These threads can be used with either a sewing machine for machine applique and free motion quilting or with hand-sewing needles for hand applique and hand quilting.

Now I'm off to my interview!

Thanks for stopping by! Ciao for now!

J :)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Suffering with a Cold... again

The problem with not hanging around with children on a regular (24/7) basis is that you pick up every cold bug that they bring around when you are with them.  This past weekend two nieces and a nephew where at my mom's and one of them had a slight bug... yup, I caught it (another one!)... ah well, the price one pays to hang around with the kids. Loved hanging around with them then, not a happy camper right about now...

Which means that I did not get to play with my serger, nor will the grandkiddo's be coming over to hang out this week, nor did I go to the guild meeting last night... major bummers.

Today I am starting to feel much better, though I have gone thru about 3 boxes of tissues... I am already planning on cutting the backing for the baby quilt, cutting the 3rd, 4th, and 5th AG size sweatshirts, and sewing the blocks for the Guild's 2013 Raffle Quilt. That should keep me busy... maybe I'll fit in some time to play with my V-day gift as well...

Thanks for stopping by, Ciao for now!

J :)

Monday, February 20, 2012

Wonderful weekend

It was great to have my siblings here for my 'younger' brother's birthday weekend. Now that everyone is headed off to their homes, it's time for me to get back to the projects at hand.

First off I need to get things organized to be able to work on the multitude of different projects. I also have to add in a few baby quilts for cousins who have had new baby's and for our new grandson, due the beginning of April. Time is flying!

Today is a quiet day as my hubby is home due to the federal holiday, so it has been slow. It has been a party weekend for all of us, just not the stress of the holidays, which was a wonderful relief.

I have not gotten onto my machine, but I'm going to play with my Valentine gift this afternoon... Oh, I realize I didn't share what I got for a gift!
Yes, I did get a serger/overlock machine... :) I do love my hubby! He does grant my wishes before I even mention them to him... So this is a Janome Mylock 634D Overlock machine, now I have two Janome's! Sweet! 

So I am off to play!

Thanks for stopping by, Ciao for now!

J :)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Hectic end of the week...

You all have been reading about the Birthday quilts... well the birthday party was a surprise in a lot of ways. My mother was having a dinner party (which my brother did know about) and had invited people that my brother knew about. What he didn't know was that my siblings all traveled home to be here to share in his birthday. When he walked into the Living Room, this was his reaction to seeing everyone.

Siblings, spouse, and some of our kids...
Then we got down to the opening of his gifts... one sister had done a bag for each decade of his life...
His reaction to part of the decade gift bags was fun to watch...
He received some amazing gifts from everyone.
Now I can post the pictures of the gifts I made for him. 1st he had to read the card...
Then the opening...
the surprise...
and showing...
 This was my 1st attempt at this type of quilting... I think it came out very well...
A quilter's best return on a gift... the smile :)
I am very pleased.

So for the other birthday quilt... when two of my other siblings reached their milestone birthday, I made a photo quilt for them, now was P's turn...

I did not get a picture of him and his family looking over all of the different pictures... the best part is that there are pictures from his birth (middle pic) to as recently as within the past two weeks included in this quilt. Each family member is in at least one picture. This was hung up in the room that we sat down to have dinner.

It was a lovely birthday party and he was very surprised and pleased to have all of his siblings here to celebrate. A lot of work, but it resulted in a lot of fun! Thank you to my siblings for traveling in to make it a wonderful weekend of fun!

Now I have a few other projects with deadlines of their own coming up. Yes, that would be the jacket samples for the class I will be teaching in less than two weeks.

I hope you are having a wonderful weekend!

Thank you for stopping by, Ciao for now!

J :)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Amazing story from Texas

On Facebook today I saw this amazing story from another quilter, who shared this story The Blind Quilter. Really inspiring story.

On another note, I am trying to finish up the B-day quilts. As I went to pin the binding onto the photo quilt, I noticed that I am shy by about 3/4 of an inch of fabric in one corner and I have over 2 inches of the same block on the opposite corner... yep, it has been 'cut & pasted' and doesn't show (that much...). It is after all the bottom back of the quilt... maybe nobody will notice... yea, right, my sister (who reads this blog on a regular basis) will be checking to see if she can spot it...

So, I need to get finished on this quilt. And the WIP's are piling up and I need to have the American Girl jackets cut and sorted for the class in less than two weeks, I need to have at the very least 3 jackets. I think I'll make it into a tutorial... and share... I'll have to check that out...

In the meantime... today has been one of those gloomy winter days, typical New England weather in February... so I was thinking about sun, and sun catchers... and I cam across this idea for some sun catchers... 

You can purchase a sun jar here, but you can make your own for much cheaper! i am not good with technical things, like putting together a solar power cell, so i found the easy way :)what you need:sj1 wednes diya mason jar with a clear glass lid like this one from ikea, a solar garden light like the ones pictured above, which i found here, adhesive and glass frosting spray.start by spraying the inside of the jar with the frosting spray – this will help diffuse the light and give it a warm glow. don’t spray the lid though! it needs to be clear in order to work. next you’ll need to take apart the solar lamp – apparently this can be a lot easier than it sounds, depending on what kind of lamp you purchase.  certain kinds can simply be unscrewed and the solar/battery pack remains intact, whereas others will require some reassembly with adhesive. see here and here for examples.sj2 wednes diyglue the solar cell, or the parts you’ve harvested from the garden lamp, to the underside of the jar’s lid, and you’re done! close the lid, put your jar in direct sunlight, and it’ll glow all night long!3763902109 a9a220e751 wednes diy

More from Free People:

I think I might just need to make one or two of theses... 

Thanks for stopping by, Ciao for now!

J :)

Monday, February 13, 2012

Do you follow *Sew I Sew? If you do, you will have already seen the following from  

She explained it so well... That I needed to follow her example and post the same information as...

The 10 Best Blogging Platforms
I have received some emails regarding Blogger changes that will take affect on March 1st.

If you are already part of BLOGGER,  , you have no worries, however, if you are using any of these other blog platforms such as , Wordpress, Tumblr, Posterous, Moveable Type, (Blogger is orange one...we are excluded here) Drupal, Joomla, live journal or penzu....they will see changes...BLOGGER WILL NOT! 

This is right from GOOGLE....

At the end of November 2011, Google announced the end to its website based community building accessory, Google Friend Connect, for non Blogger based websites.
We're retiring the service for all non-Blogger sites on March 1, 2012.
The announcement notes its replacement with Google+.
We encourage affected sites to create a Google+ page and place a Google+ badge on their site so they can bring their community of followers to Google+ and use new features like Circles and Hangouts to keep in touch.
Blogger blog owners can continue to use the Followers gadget,  can use Google+, or can build their communities using both features.

Blogger blog owners were recently offered several suggestions, to integrate Google+ into their blogs.
  • The Google+ badge, placed on the blog, directs your readers to your Google+ profile.
  • You can replace your Blogger profile with your Google+ profile.
  • Replacement of your Blogger profile with your Google+ profile enables you to publish your blog updates to your Google+ followers.

With Google retiring Friend Connect, this allows Blogger to take over its functionality. Blogger blog owners, who like the idea of letting their Followers display their icons on the faces of our blogs, and view our blog updates in the Blogger Reading List / Google Reader displays, can continue to use the Followers accessory.

By removing Google Friend Connect from the Followers accessory, Blogger is hoping that the code supporting the Followers gadget can be simplified, and will become more stable. This will hopefully resolve many of the recently reported outages, both in the blog face display, and in our dashboard and Reading Lists.

To be sure you keep those who are following you, have a button that some of your favorite peeps can continue following you....again, wait till March 1st and see what happens...I can assure you, there is far more panic than necessary....If you are part of Blogger, you will still have followers...

Hope that Helps..

I do have to say that this is so much clearer than what I was finding myself, yesterday.

On to my next issue... skipped stitches on every machine I am using on the B-day photo quilt... not a happy camper right about now and the quilt is not done... 

so upon my search for information on "skipped stitches" I found:
skipping stitches, which is the problem you described, is most often caused by a dull needle, the wrong size needle, or by an error somewhere in the way it's threaded.

double-check to make sure it's threaded correctly on top.

set your tension back to 4, which is the factory setting.
double-check to make sure your bobbin is dropped with the thread pulling out counter-clockwise (thread pulls from top of bobbin and heads to the left.)

hit the C button to reset your stitch width and length to the factory presets.

change the needle. (use an 11 or smaller for piecing if you have one.) use either a needle from the pack that came with the machine or a shmetz brand. (there are other brands that work, i'm sure, but my janomes love shmetz and they are reasonably priced so i've never bothered to try any others.)
Ok, I'm off to try this out... Might have to go purchase some new needles today... ah well, a small price to pay.

Thanks for stopping by! Ciao for now!

J :)

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Google+ and Friends Connect

Recently I have been noticing that there are many Blogs that I follow noting that Friends Connect is disappearing... So I went looking for the information today and found that Google states that "We're retiring Friend Connect on March 1, 2012." More information can be found at Support Friends Connect.

I believe that my Friends Connect may be disappearing as well... but it is as clear as mud... I need to investigate this much more.

Off to sew with my niece... I'll be back :)

Thanks for stopping by, Ciao for now!
J :)

Friday, February 10, 2012

Friday ... Already!?!

OMG, where have the days gone?
I have been buried in sewing projects that I need to have totally completed before the middle of next week... And I need to start working on the samples for the sweatshirt jacket for the Guild class. Top that off with a promise to help my niece sew a slew of hems on costumes and I have lost sight of what day it is...

My sewing table doesn't look that messy right now (the picture is not my table, I could not resist), but it does have my 'new' machine on it :) I am close to the point of petting it, much like a few friends do of theirs. :) It is fun to discover the different things that I can do with the machine, how smoothly it runs, how quickly the others are stored away... what can I say, I'm in love :)  This is a picture of my 'new' machine, it is a Janome Memory Craft 6600P
I am having the best time with it :)

As I have mentioned in the past, I am looking for work (outside of the house) to support my quilting habit, among other items that I need to support. Some times I feel like I apply, have an interview (phone, in-person, on-line) and my brain (pocket) is picked for information that the person interviewing me can use in the future.
Not that I am playing Link... but...

Each and every morning I spend a good one to two hours searching the job boards for the local (within 10 miles) area...

I have had a few interviews, but I am a runner up than the one with the job. Of course I am more of the right brain than left brain... but life is more looking for a left brain position to support the right brain love...

I continue to hear from the individuals that I interview with that I am either "Overqualified" "In the running, but the other candidate is in-house" or "We are in the beginning stages of our search" and in the end I don't hear from them. A tad frustrating, but I continue to search.

I clearly remember an artist telling me that she works to 1) supplement her art, 2) keep herself among individuals who are not artist to 'see' a different perspective, and 3) talk to other adults. She said that working alone, there is no other person to talk to, too share with, to hear different perceptions of life. When you get out of the house/studio you see people, you read newspapers, you see posters/billboards of changes. Staying inside you can read the paper, but you do not see other peoples reaction to what is written, you separate yourself from 'real' life. I can totally understand now, what she said to me so many years ago.

I am off to the gym this morning, to clear my head, and get back on track to shake some of this lethargy off and hopefully clear my head from the cold that I (hope) am on the waning end of it. Wish me luck!

Thanks for stopping by, Ciao for now!

J :)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


I really need to get into the habit of taking pictures before I clean up a royal mess... but alas I didn't.

This morning as I am plugging along, working on the backing for the photo quilt, and everything is working out nice... I decided that I am going to make larger strip blocks. The blocks are going to be 16.5" before putting them together.

As any quilter knows, you iron/press at almost every step of the way, so off I go into the room, where I have the iron, and much to my 'joy' I spy all of the plants in the window have all fallen off from the plant shelves within the window... So much for doing any ironing/pressing for now...

Ah well, that only took two hours to clean, re-pot a few that had really outgrown the pot (this one was in a pot that was 1/3 of the new pot), move some to other spots (as this one has a new home),
vacuum, and rearrange the plants to fit back into the window. 
 Yes, I did have to do some major pruning and move a few, as they had out grown the space (some had more plant than pot!).
After which it was water all the houseplants... I do have a few...

When that was done, I hopped onto FB, Pinterest, Emails, and such... there went another hour or more...

While on Facebook New England is still talking about the Patriots and the Super Bowl loss. But among the different posts about Patriots, there is a wonderful one that I felt the need to share, as it applies to anyone, anywhere, who has 'signed a blank check' for their homeland. It is not only the USA, but anywhere that you sign up to serve.
That would be a Patriot.

Now maybe I can try to get back to my projects... I have spent enough time already online and cleaning this morning...

I hope you have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by! Ciao for now!

J :)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Super Bowl Sunday

Well I have caught a bug of some kind and been home, sick... I have gone thru a few boxes of tissues already, downed enough medicine to try to at least try to function, and failed miserably... I have not been good company...

But today, we where to go to my mom's to watch the game, my being sick curtailed that idea. We watched our team try hard to win... But alase they did not pull it off... The best thing I heard about Elie Manning is that he now has more Super Bowl rings than his brother. Interesting perspective. Still, I would have loved to have seen the Patriots win. Ah well, we wll hope and pray for another chance next year.

I am working on the picture quilt for my brother's 50th birthday, which is this Friday, so I may be among the missing for a few days...

Thanks for stopping by, I'll post pictures soon! Ciao for now!

J :)

Thursday, February 2, 2012


I am still am working different BOM's. Yesterday I worked on the Blogger BOM, today I worked on the Craftsy BOM for January, yea, February is here and I had not done the January... It is a free class on Craftsy, so if you are interested go over to Cratsy Online Classes and sign up for the Free class with Amy Gibson.

Craftsy BOM Online Class is the location, but you need to sign up for the class. Here are my version of the BOM's for January:

I am using a set of fat quarters that I purchased at a guild meeting... I know that my friend G can tell you the line... and I'll have to ask her which one it is on Friday at FUF ... I guess I'll be getting back to you about what line this is :) sorry, G is so much better than me at remembering these!

Ah Ha!!! Miss G came thru! It is the Tufted Tweets line by Laurie Wisburn.

Yes, everything did come form my stash!

Off to watch the news with hubby, thank you for stopping by, Ciao for now! :)
J :)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Working on WIP's Wednesday

My WIP's list doesn't seem to be moving... but it is amazing how much work I have to catch up on before the 10th of this month!

I am working on a birthday quilt (I know, I have mentioned it a few times, but I am waiting for others to give me items for the quilt... not my timeframe). I have a few BOM's that I have to finish up... and I have R's thank you card...

Here is what went off to R ...

I hope that she enjoys them... one's a table trivet and the other is a mug rug.

As for the BOM's... I have done the Blogger Block... John over at Quilt Dad is this month's blogger... here is my version:

Yes, I have already posted it to the Flickr groups ... I almost forgot last month. 

Off to tackle some more...

Hope you are having a wonderful day! Thanks for stopping by, Ciao for now :)

J :)