Thursday, January 31, 2008

Something to Ponder

Today's postcard - pattern tissue

Sharon B posted February's challenge today in the form of a question: What are you old enough to remember? It seemed like a daunting prospect in terms of making a quilt, but on thinking about it further - this is going to be fun. Cindy and I were remembering just the other day about standing on the floor register on cold winter nights - it was so hot we could barely stand it. Yet if we moved away 12" it was terribly cold. So, I think a grid background would be an appropriate start.

And for finishing - my mother and most of her friends didn't quilt their quilt tops, they knotted them. It was a simple and efficient way to make a practical quilt. For this challenge, my quilt will be knotted. Now, that just leaves the rest.

This is my grandmother's cabinet, called a Hoosier cabinet now. I feel so lucky to have it. It was also in my mother's kitchen for many years.

Today I cut the results of this week's dyeing into fat quarters. What I love as much as the larger pieces are the end pieces that I can use for post cards or small designs. The ones with a lot of white are from dyeing the fabric flat on a piece of plexiglass.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Winter Flowers

Today's postcard - pattern tissue

The pictures are from the Krohn Conservatory.


Rosemary bonsai

Plants waiting to go into the early spring floral show


Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Fabric Dyeing Today

Today's postcard - fabric, tissue, paint

With the break in the weather, I decided to do some dyeing today. Outside, it was rainy and 50 degrees, and the basement, while still chilly, was the warmest it's been in awhile.

I wanted some reds. The little February info pamphlet that I picked up at the Cincinnati Art Museum had a Bill Blass quote on the cover: "Red is the ultimate cure for sadness." I'm not sad, but my stash is low on red, probably because that's what I love.

I did a few pieces on plexiglass that will take a day or two to be dry enough to rinse

and some in containers that are in the washer now.

As I was leaving Steph's yesterday, I took a picture of Nora in new pajamas I had picked up for her. I got them with an eye toward Aaron's being able to wear them when he's three, or maybe when he's two, the way he's growing.

She loved having her Mom put her hair up after her bath and insisted on wearing it that way to bed.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Sick Kids and Mom

Today's postcard - torn paper

Yesterday Steph, Nora, and Aaron were all sick, coughing and sneezing. When I went to their house, Nora was in bed watching a Strawberry Shortcake DVD

and Aaron was stretched out on the boppy without his usual energy.

A sad face, but great socks:

Thank goodness for Aunt Tina, who wiped about a thousand runny noses.

I stayed at their house last night because there were many wake-ups the night before, but Aaron was the only one who woke up, only briefly, and Mike settled him right away.
This morning things looked a little brighter.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Saturday with my cousin Ann

Today's postcard - tissue, cellophane, and beads

On our travels today, Ann and I went to the conservatory. It was the perfect day for it - cold outside, warm and humid inside. I expected it to be crowded, but it wasn't.

There were daffodils

And orchids that reminded me of daffodils.

Yes, Cindy, there really is buttercrunch lettuce in the beds.

We had lunch at York Street Cafe in Newport. There are so many things to look at - here is a picture of a donkey, and yes, there's a little Fisher Price person in his saddlebag.

We took the shuttle to downtown Cincinnati - we didn't get to ride the new hybrid shuttle, but there really is one.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Hurrah - Company

Today's postcard

My cousin Ann is here for the weekend. We try to get together a couple of times a year to do some eating, shopping, and catching up.

Before Ann came in the late afternoon, though, Leah and I had lunch at our favorite Korean restaurant. We're both about the same distance from the restaurant, and the food is always yummy - and inexpensive. I had the Korean vegetable tofu, probably what I had last time, too.

Then I made a quick run to the bakery for this caramel apple tart. That's about the extent of the cooking I did for this visit, but Ann and I each enjoy eating out during our times together. I have other bakery pictures for another day.

We went to Pompilio's for dinner - sorry no pictures, but if you watch Rainman you'll see a scene filmed at the bar there. It was as good as we hoped, especially the spinach artichoke cheese dip with flat bread.
After our meal we went to Newport on the Levee for a quick look around and a visit to Barnes and Noble. This book cover caught my attention.

Home again, here's Ann relaxing.

We're hoping to do lots tomorrow and hoping for some warmer weather. It was so cold by the river tonight, and this morning it was four degrees.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Getting Colder

Today's postcard

I didn't realize when I glanced at the thermometer a hour or so ago that the temperature of 20 degrees would be the high for today. Yesterday I started an insulation project and I'll keep going today. It's really not so hard - kind of like fitting quilt patches, if you really use your imagination.

My quilt with the little squares is finished. Easy to figure out what I learned with this one. Patience, patience, patience, willingness to go through the process of waiting until the right skills and ways of looking at colors developed to get to the finishing point.

The way it ended up isn't at all like I would have finished it back then when I made the squares, but it looks like I wanted it to look.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Take It Further Challenge Quilt for January

Today's Postcard

My January Take It Further Challenge quilt is finished. (If you want background on the challenge, see SharonB's blog In A Minute Ago at and click on Take It Further Challenge.)

The January topic was admiration. I decided to make a collage representing traits of women I admire. The curve represents femininity.

Here are the traits
Green: Caring for the earth
Letters on blue background: Reading and learning
Hearts on blue background: Making decisions with feeling as well as thinking
Scraps of antique quilt: Respecting the past
Blue dots on green: Being present in the current world (The dots are in groups of one or two and loosely represent binary code, which is actually zeros and ones, used in computers to stand for letters and numbers)
Flowers and pink beads: Gardening and nurturing
Blue water and waves: Taking time for relaxation
Gold beads: Having a positive outlook
Labrynth: Growing spiritually

I didn't intend to put on a border and binding, but my little granddaughter came to visit and saw the quilt in progress, almost finished. She looked at it for the longest time, then said, "Are you making that quilt for me?" And, from that moment, I was.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Snow Again

Today's postcard

Snow again today. I feel generally sluggish and am having a hard time getting motivated. I worked on my little squares quilt and it's finished except for the binding. Surely I can finish it tomorrow, and maybe my Take It Further Challenge quilt, too. There's just not that much to do with either.

I got my first lesson for a Mixed Media Surface class that I signed up for on I've been admiring those beautiful handmade journals and sketchbooks but just didn't have any idea where to start. In the first lesson we'll be working on both.

Nora and Aaron were here this afternoon. Steph and Mike think that if I had insulation stapled to the basement ceiling it would help keep out the cold that circulates around the floor. It's worth a try.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Monday Wrap Up

Today's postcard

Yesterday's Conservatory picture was of the girls on the butterfly bench, since they were the main event. They were more fascinated with the waterfall and the tunnel behind it than they were with the plants, which is as it should be.
The girls found the cacti a little off-putting, with their sharp edges and our advice to not touch.

Several of the orchids were absolutely beautiful,

and it was the second day into the early spring floral show. It runs until March 19, so the plants will be growing and the beds will look more full as the weeks go on. My cousin Ann is coming this weekend, and we plan to go back then.

Saturday night I babysat for Aaron and Nora. I don't know why we thought several weeks ago Aaron's eyes might be becoming less blue.

Nora's singing a song with hand motions - I can't remember the song.

Today I pieced the quilt using the little squares I showed last week. Several months ago I saw a picture I really liked - little blocks of rose pictures mounted in a shadow frame. As I worked today, I realized that the picture has been tucked in the back of my mind and influenced this piecing.