Sunday, July 22

Florida 2012

We had a great time on our little vacation to Florida.  We left early on Lucy's birthday.  I don't think she minded being in the car all day, the beach house is her favorite place in the world.

90+ degree water...

Nearly every minute was spent combing the beach for shells, body surfing, wave jumping or swimming in the pool.  Lucy wore herself out.  And even slept in one morning.

We took a dolphin cruise, which was so much fun.  I don't know why we've never done it before.

Our motley crew.

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Henry

We did see lots of birds- herons, pelicans, sea gulls-- and a few dolphins.  There were three sets of moms and calves that followed us for a while.

The kids got to drive the boat and Capt'n Jackie even let them wear his hat.

Another thing we'd never done before was take this boardwalk trail through Deer Lake.  It's kind of marshy and we looked for alligators, but didn't see any.  The trail lets up by the beach.

Along the way, we met up with a BP crew who were looking for signs of residual oil damage and returns of wildlife.  They pointed out fresh sea turtle tracks and the start of an abandoned nest.  They also pointed out a few live nests and said the turtles were due to hatch any day.  I'd love to see that!

It's always hard to say good bye to the beach.  We were sad that Billy couldn't come and especially missed him on the long drive home.

Thursday, July 12

In the Mail

Wrapping up the week by ticking things off the to-do is always a good feeling.
We are gearing up for a busy next couple of weeks-- a birthday, a vacation, girls camp, and hopefully a visit from some out-of-towners are all on the horizon.
In an effort to be organized, I finished up this little beauty for my friend and her new baby, Rosie.
I love that the vintage pillowcase I had has roses on it! So appropriate.
After washing it up and fluffing it in the dryer, I love how cozy it turned out.
The vintage pillowcases and linen are so soft.

 Now, to just get this postage stamp quilt off in the mail and I can move on to the next project!

Tuesday, July 10

Designer Totes and Sling

The last two weeks have been like heaven on earth for this "Granna".   13 of our 15 grandchildren have been on hand for dinners and backyard parties.  I'm a little heartbroken today as one family just left to go back home.  But not before we snuck in a couple of sewing projects.
 Visiting grand girls designed their own tote bags.
 We intended for them to help sew them but too many cousins to play with and too many parties prevented this! 

   So at the last minute, just before they flew back to L.A. I whipped them up in time for departure.  
And little Jacob broke his collar bone.  Another last minute project was making a sling that "worked".  The one provided by the ER was a tad small and just didn't stay in place.  So I traced the old one and applied Aunt Jenny's engineering skills for a new improved version.  

Friday, July 6

Postage Stamp Pillowcase Quilt

Ever since I read Oh, Fransson's! tutorial on postage stamp quilting, I wanted to give it a try.
I have also been collecting vintage pillowcases for awhile and wanted to use them in a worthy project.  My sweet friend just had her second baby girl and the thought of a feminine-postage stamp-vintagey quilt seemed truly appropriate.
Even though it's not completely finished, here's my progress so far.  The top is mostly made, just needs a border.  The squares ended up being 1 1/2" x 1 1/2" finished.

For my first try at Oh Fransson's! method, I really liked it.  Perfectly lined up corners and seams with out much effort is really gratifying!  There are some things I will do differently next time-- and I'm already planning a next time... thinking my Moda Punctuation jelly roll would look especially nice.

One thing I would do differently is to make a slightly larger seam allowance (a little more than 1/4").  That way it will be easier to make the seams lay flat.  There is a lot of bulk to press open.

Second thing would be to lay out the squares on the interfacing on a solid color surface.  It was hard to see the interfacing's pre-printed grid lines on my ironing board.

I've been having trouble with my iron.  The pesky thing!  Even though I use distilled water, it has been bleeding discolored water on my fabric.  I can't seem to find an iron that really works well.  I'll have to do some serious stain treatments to get all the spots out of this mostly white quilt before I gift it.
Any suggestions?

I'm excited to get this finished and on its way!