Wisconsin...Again =)

6.12.2016

Friday morning, we took off on the bike to head to our favorite riding destination, Wisconsin. We love it there so much! Especially the south west side, which is called the Driftless Area. Because the glaciers didn't travel this area during the last glacial period, the area is full of high bluffs and deep valleys. It is beautiful! 

This time, we stayed in La Crosse. We rode up to the top of Grandad Bluff, which is a 600-ft high bluff that overlooks the city. The view of the Mississippi River Valley includes the three states of Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa. Pictures can never do the view justice. It was breathtakingly beautiful! It was the perfect setting to do our morning devotions as we gazed upon God's creation. 



Our next stop was to one of my most favorite quilt shops, Olive Juice Quilts in Onalaska. I have no pictures and I will explain why...

When we walked in to the shop (there are more than one entrances), I quickly realized a class was going on. I apologized and asked if they would rather I go in the other entrance. I was quickly assured that I was fine! Then, I looked in the center of the room and there she stood....Anna Graham aka: Noodlehead. Anna is very well known for her bag patterns and clothing patterns. Perhaps you have heard of the Open Wide Zippered Pouch? Or of her 241 Tote? Does the Divided Basket sound familiar? Trust me, you need to check out her website

So, here is where I made a total fool out of myself...I blurted out, totally interrupting the class (in my defense, people were sewing and she was observing, so I didn't interrupt her)

"Are YOU, Noodlehead?!" 

Open up floor and drop me in, please...NOW!

She was gracious and grinned at me calling her by her website name and not Anna and allowed me to shake her hand and gush over how much I loved her bags and what an inspiration she was. 

I was totally star stuck. 

I felt so foolish...But it was super cool, none the less. After that, I was very careful to not draw attention to myself as I grabbed up bolts of fabric from the room to take to the cutting table. Russ kept trying to get me to have my picture taken with her, but I refused. I was in my Harley tank shirt with major helmet hair. No way was I going to have my picture taken!!

Here are the goodies I brought home with me. Had to get me some Little Ruby and cotton linen blend yardage. 



Next up, at the recommendation of Judy @ Cranberry Morning, we traveled to Westby to eat at Borgen's Cafe. Judy is correct, the burgers are awesome! 


Riding + eating good food + quilt shops = a fun weekend! 

Have a happy week, everyone!


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National Parks Service Centennial Celebration Quilt

6.01.2016

This year, the National Park Service is celebrating their 100 year anniversary. As most of you know, I work at Cotton Creek Mill in West Branch, Iowa, which is the home of Herbert Hoover's Library and Museum.  In honor of the centennial celebration, our shop was commissioned by the Herbert Hoover Library and Museum to make a quilt honoring National Parks and National Historic Sites to hang up in the library/museum. We were so honored!! Because there are over 400 national parks and even more national historic sites, there was no way we would could make a quilt block to represent all of them. Can you imagine how huge the quilt would be!? Instead, we narrowed it down to 84 and we made sure every state was represented. Next we got the community involved. We kitted up each block and asked people to make blocks for the quilt. Within a week, they were all gone! So far, we have received over half of them back. =) I can't wait to see them all put together!

Here are the two blocks I made for the quilt.



The one represents Hawaii Volcanoes National Park


I will post updates of the quilt's process as we get it put together. =)


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Graduation Quilt

5.30.2016

Now that the graduate has received her gift, I can share the quilt I made for her. She requested a black, white, gray and lime green quilt. The pattern I used is called Paradigm Shift. I had a total blast making this one! 



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Baby Quilts

5.28.2016

A few baby quilts that I finally finished! 

The pattern for this one is Jelly Filled by Thimble Blossoms.


These two are string quilts I made with scraps from my stash of 3 Sisters fabrics. I have a tub full of these fabrics! 



Have a happy Memorial Day weekend! 


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Quilted Pillow Covers

5.23.2016

My couch pillow covers were looking dingy and ugly. It was long overdue time to get some new ones made. I used this easy pattern





Now that I am on a roll, the rest of them are going to get new covers, too. I do need more zippers, however I can get the panels made while I wait for my order from  Zipit to arrive. 

Have a happy Monday!!

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Swaps

5.18.2016

Some of my projects have been secret ones. Now that they are delivered I can finally share. =)

April's Sew Sweet Bee queen bee was Donna @ Donna's Lavender Nest. She asked for a strawberry block from Lori Holt's book, Farm Girl Vintage. So cute!!


For the Chosen Sister's Birthday swap, Pennie had asked for an Amy Butler Weekender Bag. I have made it once before, you can see it here, so I took on the challenge to make one for Pennie.  As it was the first time, it is a bag that takes a lot of time and you can't hurry through it. For a while I wanted to give up. Dare I confess, I wanted to throw it across the room? But for Pennie, I powered through and I am pleased with how it turned out, even with the flaws. Last weekend Pennie shared she took it to her first quilting retreat. =) That made all the struggle worth it. =) 


Terrible picture of the interior.


I send a hearty THANK YOU to my friend Capi, for graciously hand sewing the lining in for me. =) 

For the record, this may be the last one I attempt, or at least until I sufficiently forget how challenging it is to make. =D

Have a happy Wednesday!


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Where Have I been??

5.17.2016

Sometimes I wonder where I am, too! *grin* However, I can tell you where I was last week. Hubby and I were in Florida!! At Panama City Beach, to be exact. It was a wonderful time of rest and relaxation. We didn't do too much besides lounging on the beach and hanging out. I did get brave and swam in the ocean for the first time. I am sure we two 50 somethings looked silly jumping and playing in the waves, but I don't care, it was fun! 

I did do one really foolish thing. On the first day on the beach, I put sunscreen on everywhere, except my face. You can imagine what I looked like in a little over an hour later.  For the rest of the week, I was the poster child of a stupid tourist. I am vain enough to not share pictures of that!!
My favorite part was the walks on the beach in the morning and at night. It was glorious...



During one of our morning walks, we ran into a sand crab.



As you can see, he was very crabby {sorry, I couldn't resist. ;-) } that we messed with him. It was funny to watch him walk. I had forgotten they walked sideways! We also saw manta rays. I didn't have my phone with me, so I didn't get any pictures of them. 


We found many shells during our walks, but I allowed myself to bring home only two. The others I gave away to other shell hunters. 


The one thing I wish we could have brought home with us was the weather. When we left Florida, it was 85 degrees. When we got home it was in the 50's. Brrrr! I love hot summer days. They can't come soon enough! 

Thanks so very much for stopping by and remember, sunscreen is your friend! =D 


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Riding season has begun...

4.18.2016

Hello, friends! I hope this beautiful spring day finds you all well. =) 

After months of dreaming of getting back on our bike, this last weekend we had perfect warm weather for a get away and it was glorious! We took a ride to Decorah, Iowa, which is an area we haven't really explored much. We will be doing more trips to this lovely area in the future, for sure! 

I made Russ pull over so I could take a picture of this barn quilt. =D 


Minutes from town, there is a lovely waterfall called Dunning Springs. Russ decided to scramble up the hill. Me, being the fearful sensible one, only climbed up a little ways. On the other side of the falls is a staircase that takes you up to the top. That was a much easier climb and the view is spectacular. 


Deborah is also home of Red-Roxy Quilt Company. Be sure to check out their website. It's a lovely shop filled with tempting fabrics and notions. It's worth the trip to visit if you are ever in the area. I walked out with these two Blueberry Park fat quarter bundles. I am trying to stick to my fabric diet...Really, I am, but can you blame me for wanting to bring these beauties home??


Meanwhile, on the home front, a jelly roll and two charm packs of Little Ruby has joined my ever growing stash of Bonnie and Camille fabrics. Eventually some yardage and a fat quarter bundle will be making their way to my home, as well. Ruby and Bliss were my favorites. Little Ruby has a mix of both, as well as a few more prints, only they made the prints at half the size. They are so cute! 



I have also been playing with strings from my scraps. Simple mindless sewing is relaxing to me. I have 220 string triangles finished. I have been playing around with how to lay them out, but nothing has been decided. 


As always, thanks for stopping by. =) One of these days I will have a project to share. I have a few and as soon as the recipients receive their gifts, I'll post them. =) 

Until next time! Have a happy spring!

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