Saturday, October 12, 2013

Leaving This Neighborhood

Friends, I'm not real happy with Google. They recently announced a new policy, which will affect every site they control. You can read more about it from the Washington Post (, but the gist of it is:

"After the policy takes effect Nov. 11, users who review a video on YouTube or a restaurant on could see their name, photo and comments show up in ads on any of the 2 million Web sites that are part of the company’s display advertising network."

I'm not comfortable with making my blog a source of advertising for companies I may like. Me saying on my blog that I like a company is one thing; having my photo, my name, and my quote floated around the interwebs promoting the company is quite another. I know that Google says people can opt out of it, but I just don't trust them. Sorry.

So, I'm moving neighborhoods. Once I have finally decided which blog host I'll be using, I'll post the new link here. For now I'm trying WordPress, and the new blog site is here: Feel free to visit, leave a comment about what you think, and we'll go from there. WordPress does say that there may sometimes be an ad on my blog post, but that's the price for me using their free option. I have to decide if I want to put up with it, pay to get rid of the ads, or switch blog hosts (although any blog host I use will want some kind of reimbursement for letting me share my thoughts with the world, so there will be trade-offs no matter which one I choose).

I hope those that have already chosen to follow my blog will also follow me to my new location. Thank you for giving me your time, I really do appreciate it, and I hope I've at least entertained you a little!  :)


Friday, October 11, 2013

Little Bit of This and a Little Bit of That

So much is going on, sometimes I forget that I have a blog that needs attention, too! I figured I'd share some of what I've been working on this week.

Earlier this week, I found a whole bunch of scraps in my scrap bin. Most had been assembled into 3.5" squares, but some were just cut and clumped together. So I finished assembling the squares. 

Okay, now what do I do with them? Not enough of them to do anything just with them (10 of each color). So I raided my stash and found a nice dark blue half yard that might work.

Yep, that'll look better.

My husband said it looks like a building with a funky curtain color scheme. I think the white strips really pop compared to the darker colors. 

And now it goes back into the UFO pile until I figure out how to finish it! My guess is it will become a kids' quilt for Project Linus. I have two others in various stages for that group. 

Today I visited a certain big box fabric store, and stocked up on a few things. The nice clerk had an extra coupon at the register, so I got 50% off of things that weren't already on sale. Yay!

First up, zippers. I agreed to repair my neighbor's winter coat, which has a broken zipper. This is my third attempt to get something that will work for it. A week ago I thought I had found the perfect zipper, right color, etc., only to find it was one inch too short. Bah! So, one of these purchased today should work. I also picked up another box of interfacing, to experiment with it and make sure it will work for a t-shirt quilt I'm helping a friend make. I'll dig out one of my old t-shirts to test it on, maybe I'll make a pillow out of it? Plus more machine quilting thread, because I have a feeling I will be doing more of that in the future.

Next up, a bag of cotton batting specifically for microwaveable quilted items. I thought I would try those microwaveable bowls I've seen others making. It sounded like an easy project to make with my sewing student. I didn't even know Pellon made batting, but I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

Batting, batting, batting! Does any quilter ever think he/she has enough? And at half price, it seemed like a good time to buy some that would be the right size for Project Linus kids' quilts. (See, the top and bottom of this post really are connected!)

Tonight I'll work a bit more on my husband's quilt. I'm hand quilting it, which means it progresses slowly, but that's okay. There's a baseball playoff game, and it's chilly out, which means it's perfect weather right now!  :)  


Friday, October 4, 2013

Sports and the Solitary Quilter

I found the following article as I was cleaning up a room this morning. I wrote this bit several years ago, after reading an article in a quilting magazine. I was going to send it in to the magazine, but obviously never got around to it (or got up the nerve to send it in). Seems like the perfect thing for a blog post, though, as it is all still true today.

I am probably an oddity in the quilting world in more ways than one. I was inspired to start quilting by a woman who was not a quilter. I have never taken a quilting class. My work schedule does not permit me to join the local quilt guild. But while I am a self-proclaimed solitary quilter, I am not alone. There is always some kind of sports on the TV or radio while I quilt or sew, and the fan cheers and commentators keep me company.

Sports are the perfect companion for me because TV always replays the really good action, giving you a chance to park your needle before looking up at the screen. Baseball is the ultimate quilting sport, with long periods when I don't have to look up at all, but Summer can be a hot time to quilt. Ice hockey and college basketball have lots of action, but the commentators usually keep me up to speed so I don't have to look up as much. Football provides a good balance and the season is the perfect time to snuggle under a quilt while I'm working on it. Which makes me wonder: do I prefer football to other sports because it's played during quilting season?

I recently realized how important it is that I do something while watching sports. In September 2006 I was diagnosed with tennis elbow and was unable to work on any of my projects until January 2007. I simply didn't know what to do with myself. What's the point of watching TV if I'm not working on my next quilting project? How can people just sit on a couch and watch TV, doing nothing? I climbed the walls for months until at last my elbow healed and I could return to my normal activities. I could sympathize with the athletes who were unable to play because of a seemingly minor injury or who were going through rehab. 

Many people think of quilting as a very social activity, imagining or remembering quilting bees of old and thinking of quilting guilds today. But many of us are not able to join with others, either because of our work schedules, the location of our homes, or other isolating circumstances. I am probably not as unusual as I may think, either in my work habits or in the path I have taken to quilting. But in one way I am like many a quilter on the planet: I make my quilts to give to others, to give them more color in their lives or a warm, comforting hug anytime they need it. This is the social extension of my solitary, sporting, quilting world.