Thursday, September 30, 2010

Quilt Hoop - which one is best?

We still have hot weather here, so strawberry picking is a worthwhile activity. We plucked a couple buckets of them after the apple picking was done last weekend.

When it comes to hand quilting, I've found that size really does matter.

I have an embarrassing number of quilt hoops but for the most part I use my 18" floor hoop that I got from Hinterberg on a usual basis.

I also have their 22" hoop, but I find that it is a bit on the big side for me and I have trouble reaching the other side.

How big's your quilt hoop? Got a favorite one? Maybe I need just one more?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Day Trips

Last weekend was packed with multiple day trips all in only 2 days.

We visited Berkeley to pick up my new matchless spinning wheel at A Verb for Keeping Warm. Kristine, the shop owner, was so lovely to go over all the bells and whistles on the wheel. I'm already spinning up a storm.

As much as going to 'quilt stores' (my sons call all stores that only I want to visit 'quilt stores') we needed a boy-friendly adventure too. That came in the form of a visit to the USS Pampanito.

This is a real military submarine that you can tour, walk through, and imagine that you got to sail on. It was pretty neat. I found out that if you're a 5 yr old boy or a 36 yr old man...the same 'cool' appeal applies.

We also visited the Heath store in the San Francisco Ferry Building. They have very minimalistic plates and other ceramics for the kitchen. Very nice stuff...their shop in the Ferry Building was a little small and I found myself slightly sorry that I didn't go to their factory in Sausalito. Next time.

Oh yeah, and we went apple and strawberry picking in Watsonville. It was so hot! We did grab some fruit and run though. Can you say strawberry applesauce?

One more link - check out my sister's baby's 2 yr old signature quilt block . It's really cute to see all the signatures on it. Her calligraphy is beautiful.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Spindle love

Just a quick post tonight, it's already getting late.

I finally went to Yarn Dogs yarn/fiber shop in Los Gatos, California last weekend. I picked up some fiber that is superfine merino (maybe 150's merino?) that was hand dyed by Carin Engen of

So pretty. This colorway is called Stone. I am not sure what to do with only 2 oz of it, but maybe I'll make a nose cozy.

Could this be the swan song for my little spindle? I will always love it...but I will also confess that I'm soon to get a new plaything for spinning.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Places to go

I started reading Pride and Prejudice since I love Jane Austen and wanted something to relax a bit.

We aren't traveling much lately because we have all been sick on and off, so staying close to home and reading is our fun for now.

My older boy made a list of places he wants to visit. He made it just before his 5th birthday. I thought it was a cute list, so I'll share it here with you:

- China
- England
- Germany
- Oakland Zoo
- Canada
- Asia
- Camping in Big Sur, California
- To the circus
- Gilroy Gardens amusement park
- Disneyland
- Andy Z concert
- Alaska
- Wisconsin
- Orange County
- County Fair
- Aircraft Show
- Ireland
- Midway Aircraft Carrier in San Diego, CA
- Antarctica

I used to have a similar list on the back of my door that I would check off now and then. Those days are long gone for me, but it's an impressive list my son has here. I hope he checks them all off eventually.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Daiwabo Fabrics

Here is the '2' birthday block. I'm using Daiwabo yarn woven fabrics for these blocks. Check out the 1 yr old version here.

The older boy's blocks have hand dye fabrics by Primrose Gradations, a company that no longer shows up at quilt shows I go to but looks like I can still get fabrics online.

The older versions of the previous year's blocks for 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 are of course in the collection waiting for assembly.

My son's favorite color is pink right now, at 5 years old, which is why I made his block with pinkish fabric (photo in my last post). I love that he doesn't realize that is typically a 'girl color' (why is that anyhow??) and he just digs it for the cool color it is.

Someday in the not so distant future, his friends may convince him that pink is not a 'manly' color. Until then, I love his innocence and his passion about opinions that he has uniquely formulated all by himself.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Turning 2. Turning 5. Turning 500.

This weekend my sons had their 1 day apart birthdays and it was a lot of fun. The little one turned 2 and the older one turned 5.

Grandparents visited and it was overall pretty relaxed as we already had the kid bounce house party a couple of weeks ago.

I made a cake for each of them (yes, that's 2 cakes people!). If you want to try a left-over slice, just say the word.

More toys than I can even say grace the floor of our living room. I am living in fear of The Great Clean Up event coming later tonight.

As my boys are growing up too quickly for my taste, this blog is getting older too.

This is my 500th post and my blog is 3.75 years old or so. Who knew I would have this much fun sharing my creative endeavors and life in general with you.

My warmest and sincerest THANK YOU to you for reading, for commenting, for stopping by, and for also sharing your creative inspiration with me.

Someday soon I'll have to make a belated 500th post party gift to give away, but I will confess I have too much on my plate a this very instant.

Here's to the next 500. Cheers!


Thursday, September 2, 2010

Riding herd

I've been riding herd on the upcoming birthday planning.

Our son's 1-day-apart birthdays are almost in hand, so preparations are well underway.

Presents have been mail ordered (no time for the mall!) and I even made a little video invite for the grandparents since they are flying in. We sorta already had their 'kid friend' party, so the real 'day of' is very relaxed this year.

Above is a photo of my very own birthday crown hat that I made based on the Creative Family book by Amanda Soule. They are fun to make and the family finally shamed me into making one for myself.

So much more going on...a new knitting book arrived in my hot little hands, an online shopping spree was had for Japanese Fabric at SuperBuzzy, and my crochet scarf was finally finished.

More on all of that soon, I promise.