Sunday, October 23, 2022

Jazzy Blues Progress

 

After a long lull without sewing, I have been making progress on the Jazzy Blues quilt. This quilt is a part of a quilt along, named Aunt Daisy. All the blocks have been released and many people have already finished their quilts. There are a lot of beautiful colorways showing up on my Facebook feed, and only a couple with alternate layouts.

Last week, I spent a fifteen minute session making a trial equilateral triangle block. I have a acrylic template set to help me make them, but don't have directions. I figured it was probably already taking the seam allowance into consideration, but I decided to make it big and trim if I needed. It worked out perfectly (except for the trimming I didn't need).

 

 

So this week, I made a whole bunch of triangle blocks. I didn't make the number required because I wanted to try out different layouts and decide before making these blocks.

I need to make more of these, and also some in the contrasting colorway. Then I played with some choices. I don't think I will ever have this many different blocks available so it is fun to play around and see what kinds of designs they can make.



Did you notice that my design choices have 25 components?

That number doesn't include all the blocks that I made. The actually block has more components.


This is more like the actual layout, except I haven't made the alternate colorway for the equilateral triangle blocks yet. Can I just say that I am so impressed with the original designer of this block? There are 49 pieces and so many different types of components.

Plus, this block is so big that I don't really have a good place to lay it out. I put it on top of the crate, but then it isn't easy to photograph it or look at the layout. For some reason, my desktop isn't tiling the background picture so I will have to figure out a different way to see how this will look in a quilt.

2022: 15 Minutes to Stitch Weeks 40, 41, 42

 


 

I worked on Jazzy Blues this week, although I did take a look at the Olympics quilt. I am not going to meet my goal of finishing more quilts than I start if I don't finish two quilts this year. I might finish another couple of quilt tops in the flimsy closet instead, but the Olympics quilt is closest to being done.

15 minute days these weeks --8 out of 21
15 minute days this year -- 215 out of 296 days
Success rate  = 77%
 

Linked with Life in Pieces: Stitching Stuff


 

Monday, October 3, 2022

Learning about Zoey

One of my blogging friends posts an annual birthday post for each of her children. It is a nice place to document the growth of her children and I thought I would do the same for Zoey.

Instead of finding a name for her around the original Jaslyn that she was given at the shelter, I have settled on the name Zoey. She didn't know the name Jaslyn, and Zoey just seems to fit her. Then I remembered that Bonnie Hunter also has a dog named Zoey, so maybe subconsciously that is why I thought of that name.. Her vet and prescription company think of her as Jazz so I will keep that name too.


She is a fairly sweet, very affectionate dog. She followed me around everywhere I went on the first few days, but now she will stay where she is while she is taking a nap. She does not like to be outside without me, but she does not seem to be frightened of sounds. Trains, planes, thunder, wind rustling the leaves, loud cars with blaring music, sirens, dogs barking, people talking, band practice, and kids screaming in the playground get her attention, but she does not seem to be afraid of them. I have been coming in and out of the house for her to get used to being outside without me. She loves it out there.

 

Zoey needs more training to keep her from jumping up, not mouth me, or pull at my clothes. When she just wants more food, especially what I am eating, or if she wants to play tug, or she just needs to take a nap, she will start nipping me. I got a crate for her, and she can stand and more around in it fine, but she can't sit without bending her neck, so I have returned the old crate and will be getting a bigger one. It will be challenging to find a place for a bigger crate in my house, but I can't leave her alone without one. She ate a bag full of treats when I left her to pick up her food.

 She is also very smart and can think of other ways to get what she wants, like jumping over the arm rest on the couch or jumping down off the side of the porch.


She is so funny when she is outside. She takes a passion fruit off the vines and throws it a few feet away, catches it and throws it another few feet away. She can play catch like this for a long time, and if the passion fruit breaks, she eats the seeds inside. She now has a 2.5" soft squeaky ball that she can use. It is a little bigger than a passion fruit but she likes it too now. It is a nice way for her to use up her energy. She will just sit at the door if I am inside so I have to stay outside with her. This will be a problem as the weather gets cooler, but I do try to keep coming in and out of her house to get her used to being outside by herself.

She has a lot of energy and does zoomies around the yard when she is upset.

2022: 15 Minutes to Stitch Week 37, 38 and 39

 


 

I haven't been doing any significant quilting these three weeks

15 minute days this weeks --1 out of 21
15 minute days this year -- 207 out of 268 days
Success rate  = 77%
 
 

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Introducing Jazz


 

I have been keeping an eye out on the dog shelter website for several months, but I wanted to make sure I was ready. I also wanted to make sure that I got a new dog when I was on vacation so I could have enough time to start the training process.

My sister went to the vet and she found a cute puppy that was available and I was mighty tempted, but I checked the shelter website again, hoping to find a slightly older dog who was already potty trained.

I am on vacation so this would be the best time. There was a really cute scruffy dog that looked like the dog on Frazier, so I decided to check that dog first. My brother in law came with me. Because my first choice when I went to get a dog last time was taken, I also picked three other backup dogs in case the Frazier dog was no longer available.

 

 

We gave the list to the dog counselor and he chose the order of the presentation based on where they were located. As luck would have it, the Frazier dog was taken. And the other boy dog tended to lean against people and I didn't want to take that risk around my mother. The other girl pulled on the leash and did not acknowledge my presence at all. I know both of them can be trained.

Jazz was the last one we saw and I was getting nervous that I wouldn't find one who was a good match for me, but Jazz was definitely a good match.


 

So much for all the beige carpet I got to camouflage Zeus's fur. 

She is a medium size dog, a Dutch Shepherd mix. She walked really well without pulling and was attentive to me. She has already been spayed. She was on anxiety medication at the pound, and I am working to wean her from it. 



After I brought her home, I found that she follows me around every where but does not exhibit any noticeable anxiety signs when I am not in sight. She can be left out without a crate because she only sniffs and does not try to chew anything except for the stuffed animal I gave her to chew. I have since bought new chew toys for her. I had thrown out all of Zeus' chew toys.

Even though the name is in the post, I haven't finalized her name. We gave it a couple of weeks when we got Zeus before we settled on his name. Her name was Jazlyn at the pound, which I find hard to pronounce because I keep trying to change it to Jasmin. I do like the name though so I think simple Jazz will work. This morning on the radio, they talked about a dog named Coconut. I thought that might be a good name for her since she does look like the outside of a Coconut. So maybe Jazz Coconut or Jazzy Coconut. There are a few other names I am considering as well. I am also considering a name that starts with A so the I can say I have dogs from Z to A. When I added a label for her Jazz, Jazzy Blues came up. Funny that I am working on a Jazzy Blues quilt when I get a dog named Jazz. 



Sunday, September 11, 2022

Quilt Reveal: Be a Peacock in a World of Ducks

 

 
I was watching an episode of Quilt Nerd by Mary Fons which featured Liberty of London fabrics and one of the photos included a quilt of a peacock in a tree made with Liberty fabrics. It was one of those quilts I just had to make.



I don't have any Liberty fabric so when I went to the Cave of Wonders I was handed the same stack of fabric that I used to make my last peacock quilt, BeUnique. Copying the style or mood of last peacock quilt wasn't what I had in mind, but it's never  any use to argue with the Cave of Wonders.

But as soon as I started cutting up the pieces, I knew that it would work wonderfully.


I followed my normal pattern. Cut up the pieces and position them the background fabric. Use a glue stick to hold them down. Sandwich the quilt and sew down the applique by sewing around the shapes. Then continue to quilt as desired. In this quilt, I meandered using matching thread. This let me go over the top with quilting while keeping the quilt visually simple.

 
This was a fun quilt to make. I didn't try to learn any new techniques and just stuck with what I knew.



I added the hanging corners The quilt is 18" by 22".


 

I'm  participating in The Constant Quilter Wendy's Monthly Mini link-up.  Visit her blog for links to other quilters who have made small quilts. 

2022: 15 Minutes to Stitch Week 36

 

My project at work is finished and I have about a month off before the next project starts. I have been working on the list of home projects I have saved up for this time, most of it spent creatively procrastinating. I have been quilting every day, making this quilt and trimming the square in a square blocks for Jazzy Blues. I also found rulers to make the last set of blocks for Jazzy Blues. I have only been quilting a few minutes a day instead of using all my "free" time quilting. 

15 minute days this weeks --35 out of 35
15 minute days this year -- 202 out of 247days
Success rate  = 82%

 


Two happy things to share with you today. 

 

My daughter asked me if I had a quilt she could use to decorate the wall above her couch. Do I have a quilt for her wall?! I sent her pictures of the 10 quilts I have made that fit that criteria. She has seen them all, but pictures are easier than names. She chose African Circles. And to make this news even better, I was able to give it to her in person since she came to town for a family birthday party.

 

When my brother-in-law planted the tree in my back yard, we talked about getting rid of the weed bed that is outside the fence and replacing with easy to cut and maintain grass. But one of us had the idea that since the tree is small and not shading the area, we could fill out this bed with flowers. He asked me what kind of flowers, and I said I would like bright profusion of colors. He planted all this for me, and it has been delightful to come out and see all the flowers blooming and changing throughout the summer.


Sunday, August 7, 2022

Quilt Reveal: U S A


 I finished a small quilt today. I started it in July, but it took me a while to get it done. Lots of little pieces to sew down.

 

I am calling it USA for obvious reasons. It uses the trimmings from the Jazzy Blues quilt. I trimmed off seams but I basically left the trimmings the way they were and arranged them on the quilt. This means some pieces are skinnier and some are thicker. Some are shorter and some are longer. I glue basted the pieces on the sandwich, randomly without regard to the fabric design, and sewed them down, combining the quilting and the applique.


A patriotic quilt looked like it needed some red, so I added this dotted ribbon. I like how the zig zag stitch adds to the design on the ribbon. I also added a star motif on the edge of the white to help secure the white background.

 

At the last minute, I remembered to add a corner triangle for a label. I usually put it on the bottom left, but any corner will serve as a label.

 

I'm  participating in The Constant Quilter Wendy's Monthly Mini link-up.  Visit her blog for links to other quilters who have made small quilts.

Week 31


 I made the USA quilt this week. I didn't get a chance to trim the Jazzy Blues quilt. As usual the baby quilt gets the attention and gets "born" before the parent.

15 minute days this weeks --7 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 167 out of 212 days
Success rate  = 79%

 



This week I changed up my recipes. Usually I make a lot of a one pot meal and freeze them in single serving portions. I can then defrost something frozen for each meal, and even though I only cooked one or two things each week, I can defrost something I cooked in a previous week for variety.

This week, I basically made some quick and simple mixes and combined them in different ways to have something different to eat each meal. Nothing was frozen.

 I want to document it here so I remember. I found a recipe for Bombay sandwich.  It is a very flexible recipe, basically a simple sandwich using a chutney for flavor, and vegetables for filling.  It usually uses potatoes which I think is interesting for a sandwich. The recipe I have linked shows a recipe for onion jam, and I made it for the first time. I think it is delicious although some of the mustard seed was bitter the first day. It mellowed out over time. I don't know why it is called jam, but the recipe makes plenty of "jam" so you can keep using it for more sandwiches, but also other foods.  I just baked the potato in the microwave, so it is really quick and easy to put together.  I cut just enough vegetables for the sandwich so they would be fresh (tomatoes and cucumber) and saved the rest for the next meal. I didn't have white bread so I used tortillas, which worked great. Sometimes I folded the tortilla like a taco and grilled it. I also had some leftover rice, so a couple of times, I made the ingredients with rice instead of a sandwich.

Then I had the bright idea to just have a baked potato with the onion jam. I added some black beans for protein.

When I ran out of the onion jam, I pulled out my recipe for pita and combined it with another recipe that used cabbage. Basically coat some chickpeas in flour (I used chick pea flour) and roast them. Then lightly cook the red cabbage with onions and tomatoes with some spices. Spread hummus on the pita and add the roasted chickpeas and vegetables. I didn't have pita, so I used rice and tortillas again. This tastes great with feta cheese.

I also had some enchilada sauce. I used the leftover chickpeas and used that as a protein for enchiladas. I also added leftover black beans. So mostly I could mix and match all of the ingredients and have something different to eat every meal. I was able to use up the things I had made, and by adding something different to it, or omitting something, was able to keep each meal tasting different.

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Week 30


 I hope you aren't getting tired of seeing these coloring pages. I have been trying to change things, one block at a time to make sure that I want to make the blocks the way the pattern designer chose. In this drawing, you can see that some of the equilateral triangles, the tri-rec bloks, have light triangles while some of them have dark triangles. My original drawings had them all with the dark triangles. 

I like them both ways, but the change is really subtle so I am going to go along with the original plan and make them both ways. I really like the colors in this drawing, but mine are all going to be mostly blue and black with hints of other colors.

I am not going to sew the together into blocks until I try out different settings. Most of the changes are so subtle though that I will probably go with the original layout.

2022: 15 Minutes to Stitch Week 30

 


This week, I sewed all of the square in a square blocks for the Jazzy Blues quilt. I need to cut off the dog ears and do some minor trimming them up to size. I found a template for the equilateral triangles that will be used for the rest of the blocks. They will be made in different colorways.

I chose the constant color for the next set of postage stamp blocks.

I also made a plan for the mini quilt I will be making from the trimmings I showed you last week.


15 minute days these two weeks --7 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 160 out of 205 days
Success rate  = 78%

 

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Summer Progress


 Bloglovin has been down a great deal this summer, which means that I do not get informed when one of my blogger friends publishes a post. I don't keep a separate list so I have to find them from people who have commented on my post or posts written by more popular bloggers.

We have been getting a lot of summer thunder storms. The electricity has gone out several times but it comes back after a short time.

 

This gives me more time to do more quilting. I have been getting better every day after my surgery and today I feel like I can go about life as normal. I will be going back to work on Monday, so I want to catch up on the chores that has been slacking. I kept up with the daily work, but there is much to be done.

2022: 15 Minutes to Stitch Week 29

 

Quilting wise, this week I was able to finish trimming the half square triangles of the Jazzy Blues quilt. The trimmings are half an inch wide. A sane quilter would think that is the perfect size to throw away. After all, if you sew them together, the entire piece will be hidden in the seam allowance. But if you have been reading my blog for any amount of time, you will know that I have a hard time throwing out fabric like that. I have been making myself throw away the fabric trash in the kitchen trash can to avoid my pulling it out of the trash can but these trimmings aren't going to go any trash can until at least after I make a mini quilt out of these pieces.

Besides the trimming, I also finished sewing this postage stamp / checkerboard block. This is my leader ender project while I make the Jazzy Blues blocks. I now have eight of these blocks.

I also cut the squares for the square in a square block for Jazzy Blues. I made a couple of sample blocks since I am going to try to make them with little or no trimming.

15 minute days these two weeks --7 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 153 out of 198 days
Success rate  = 77%