Thursday, January 12, 2017

I Like Thursdays #12

It's that wonderful day of the week again when we fill the internet with a positive spirit and a bit of inspiration!  Join LeeAnna at her website (here) to share your inspirations and happy energy for "I Like Thursdays" !

What do I like this week?

1. I like finishing quilts and every few years I have to do a UFO challenge of some sort to take care of projects that either frustrated, overwhelmed, or became lost in the sewing room.  I've mentioned this before but I just have to tell you that by cataloging your UFOs, you can actually finish a plethora of projects!!!  One year I think I finished 24 pieces. I've taken to binding some of my UFOs (the easiest kind of project to finish) and keep them stacked up to work on in the evening as we watch tv.

2.  I like that there is only 66 days until Spring!!!  I can almost smell the damp earth and feel the warm breezes!!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

I Like Thursdays #11

Check out all the likes and inspiration!  Head on over to LeeAnna's to link up!!!  This week's likes:

1. Homerun:   During the last "I like Thursdays," I discussed Hasbro's Joy for All robotic cat that we purchased for my sister-in-law.  She has early onset dementia and this product was developed for Alzheimers and Dementia patients.  I can't say enough for this product.  Our Di went from being withdrawn and silent to laughing and engaging with "kitty."  My husband said, "You hit the ball out of the park."  We can't believe the change it created in her.  If you have a family member dealing with either of these tragic diseases I suggest you try this.  You can order it directly from Hasbro.
2.  I've been frequently running away from home.  We've been visiting family and I've gone to a lot of flea markets.  I was happy to pick up some overall boys.  I love this one with the pig.  You can tell the maker created her own pattern (check out the penciled lines of the arms).  
And I love this one with the ducks:

The style of these ducks remind of a pull-toy produced by Fisher-Price

3.  I picked up some embroidery blocks that were unfinished.  They are too worn/dirty/stained to embroider but I liked the motifs.  I can scan them and copy them onto fabric with my lightbox.  I'll be sharing these with you so here is the first one...You'll have to darken it a bit to copy but it is sweet.  I see this motif on many 19th century redwork pieces.
4.  THE FREE TABLE!!!  Our quilt guild has a free table where members bring supplies that they no longer want.  I think this is such a neat thing.  Somebody always wants what you bring.  I like to pick up magazines and occasionally get some fabric.  Most of the fabric I picked up this week is for Meals-On-Wheels placemats but I do adore the blue/pink bird print.  I think it is adorable!!!
 And also I picked up these free blocks:

Well I'm off to finish a gluten free cake for hubby and get ready to take some pieces up to my longarm quilter.  Have a great day!!!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

A finish and a start

I'm doing the All People Quilt 2017 UFO Challenge (you can find it here).  This month I hope to finish the binding on two quilts and I am happy to report that I finished this piece last night.  Now I have to complete a bigger poppy quilt.

I've been going to some flea markets and finding a few treasures.  Today I am going to work on this piece of embroidery I found on Saturday.  The piece was a kit offered in the 1970s by Erica Wilson and features Chessie, the Railroad Kitten--the mascot of the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad.  The image of the cat was originally created by Guido Gruenwald (1881-1935) and adopted by the railroad in a 1933 ad.  
The ad created a sensation and "Chessie" became the companies mascot.  The piece I found was complete but loose.  It isn't enough that I have my own UFOs, I feel compelled to take on others as well :D  
I'm going to make a pillow for Peter and Jessica and found an asian inspired print that I think they will like (Jessica was just in Japan this last fall).  
I'll keep it simple because I want to be able to give it this weekend when I see the kids.  Here in Pennsylvania, it's been wet and cold weather but that just means--perfect sewing weather and we DO need the rain. 

Have a wonderful day!

Monday, January 2, 2017

Lily and Claire's Quilts

I had a lot of Christmas scraps and still have piles of 6.5 inch squares from a swap that I participated in years ago.  So made this quilt for Lily and Claire.  I had posted about this gift in December.  The girls like their quilt and Claire immediately placed the doll quilt on her stroller in case her dolls got cold.
Probably the nicest endorsement was a photo Lori posted a day or two later.  The quilt was already absconded to the she shed.  Check out Maggie the border collie at the window:
Isn't this adorable? 
Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, January 1, 2017


Smiles from the threshold of the year to come,
Whispering 'it will be happier'...."
--Alfred Tennyson

Wishing you a peaceful New Year.

I've been doing a lot of road trips since Tuesday.  The calls and kindnesses continue to come as the word spreads throughout our neighborhood.  LeeAnna's advice was to get out of the house and it was wise.  I've visited two friends, gone flea marketing, bought some much needed personal things (boots and a purse).  Brad came home yesterday and it is easier with someone else wandering around the cottage. 

 Today I'll sew and make pork and sauerkraut (traditional Pa. Dutch New Year dinner) before our friend Carol comes over to watch The Librarians with us.  

I'm also concentrating on completing UFOs.  I'm joining up the American Patchwork and Quilting Challenge which you can learn about here.  

January UFOs to complete

I have a program to finish and market so the next months will be busy.

My 2017 is focused on springtime.  LeeAnna connected me with a reputable breeder and we are hoping to have a puppy come spring.  I hope that Lee Anna  and I will have siblings which could be fun.  This is the thought that has made me stop crying (all the time to just some of the time).  

Well I'm off to have coffee with the girls up the street.  Have a wonderful day and year full of peace and happiness.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Famous Seamus

Just last Saturday--on Christmas Eve--Seamus turned 10 years old.  He had a wonderful Christmas as you can see by the Christmas post.  On Monday, he had a wonderful day, visited all the people he loved most.  Everything was fine.  And then at 8:30 pm, something was wrong.  He couldn't sit or lay down.

We rushed him to the vet hospital.

Although Seamus' hepatitis was improving, no one realized he had a fast growing mass on his spleen which had begun to bleed Monday night.  He passed away early Tuesday morning.

When we got Seamus as a puppy, he was terribly ill with pneumonia and almost died.  Twice a day we would take him to the vet for IV meds and check-ups.  We have always felt that he knew he was saved by humans.  My mother referred to him as an angel that God wanted save to provide comfort to all.  I think that is why he passed the therapy dog test so early.   Unlike many dogs, he LOVED going to the vets and wanted to visit everyone.  He remained a cuddle pup his entire life.

It isn't just my husband and I that are devastated.  I cannot even count all the people that were touched by Seamus' loving personality.  His therapy patients, the many people he adopted in our neighborhood, his many friends at the park.  He loved everyone and everyone loved him.  
A neighbor dropped off this plant for us in memory of our sweet boy.
The news has spread through my city neighborhood and I can't believe the response of the folks around here. So many people have stopped by or called to relay their sympathy and to acknowledge how much he will be missed.  We have been inundated with love.

 I am grateful to all of  you who have shared the loss with my husband and me.  

My one comfort these days is that his life meant so much to so many. 

Thank you for your kindness and for loving my boy.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Peter and Jessica's quilt.

Peter and Jessica liked their quilt!  I know you've seen it before but I just had to post this photo :)
Peter also liked receiving his great-great-grandmother's aghan she made...probably in the 1960s or 70s.  My mom had it stored away for the someday that came on Christmas:
and Peter liked his Asimov gift :)
The grandkids are getting so big!!  But I don't post photos of them online anymore.  They were both excited to learn that they are going to Florida in two weeks!  They should have a great time!
Seamus had a wonderful day as well:
Now we spend a few days recovering from the madness!  
Hope your holiday was wonderful!

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you a holiday full of peace and joy!

Thursday, December 22, 2016

I Like Thursdays #10

Well it's that wonderful day of the week!  Positivity abounds on "I Like Thursdays" founded by our friend LeeAnna at her blog, "Not Afraid of Color" (here).

What do I like this week?

1.  Having a few weeks alone to get Christmas together.  My husband travels a lot with his job and this month, I was grateful to get a few weeks in where everything could be baked, wrapped and cleaned for the Christmas brunch.  YEEHAW!  Done and just doing some light things on Saturday and then welcoming the gang!

2.  I liked baking this year.  The new cookie recipe that I liked was Nestle's Mint Chip Chocolate Cookie.  You can find the recipe here.  I didn't use the mint chips though.  I found miniature Andes candies in the baking aisle and used that instead.  At first I wasn't sure I liked them.  But now that my palette is cleared (of sugary goods), I have to say these are quite tasty!
3.  I like how Seamus is acting these days.  He's learned some new tricks, is attempting to manipulate us more (always a normal poodle sign), and seems more alert.  We aren't going to do bloodwork until after the holidays but I must say, I'm feeling more optimistic. 

4.  My favorite gift to give this year is an unusual one.  I have a sister-in-law with early onset dementia.  It is heartbreaking and this year has been really tough on her and most of all, my brother-in-law, her husband and primary caregiver.  I know it will get tougher too.  So when I found an article in the New York Times (article here) about a new gadget being used with dementia/alzheimer patients, I decided to do some research and see what others who used it said.  What is it?  A robotic cat (they have dogs too) made by Hasbro that more nursing homes are using to calm patients when they become agitated.  

I know all about this.  When Seamus was an active therapy dog, we would sometimes be asked to go to the dementia/alheimers ward to help calm the patients--and it worked!  So after reading a lot of positive responses from consumers, I decided to order one for Diane.  She lost her own Kitty this year and one of her favorite things is to pet animals, small animals especially (this is really helpful when there is a lot of activity around her).

Kitty came this week and I have to say, I'm really surprised at all that she can do.  Her eyes don't just blink but get small when she is being stroked, She meows, she rolls over on her back so you can scratch her belly (and she rolls back too when she is done with that).  She raises her paw as if to clean her paw.  Oh...and she purrs and she feels like she is purring (the weight of the cat and vibration is spot on to a real cat).  I can't say enough for this product.  I took it to my Mom's to make sure it worked and thought you would like to see Greta's reaction (white poodle girlfriend of Seamus).  PS-that's my mom with Kitty who also is teasing Greta:

5.  My last like is finishing another UFO.  This was a split nine patch quilt that I made with scraps of Christmas fabrics I had (some for years).  Still not sure who to give it to but it will be nice to have it around for a present. sideways 
 I especially like the quilting (thanks Terri Trotter!) in the shape of cardinals!!

That's it for this week!  I hope you are all having a wonderful holiday!!!