Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Grocery Bag

I've been wanting to make homemade grocery bags for a while so tonight, I made one. I used this instructable by Compwalla (shift click to open in a new window) which is probably the best one I've found for making a bag that looks a lot like a plastic grocery bag. I used a Target bag as my pattern. The fabric I used for the lining was a little heavier than I should have used-but most of my yardage is earmarked for a certain project or not big enough. I may try doing patchwork ones. I also added a pocket so that the bag can be folded up and slipped in the pocket. Because of the thicker lining it's a challenge to get it in there though, but the pocket can also be used as a regular pocket. I also did a french seam at the bottom but I probably won't do that next time-my machine had a little trouble with it.

The bag, empty (sorry for the crappy lighting-I have the worst time getting the white balance right in this room)

The bag, full. Some of this was stuff I hadn't put away yet and some I pulled out of my cupboard. The things I go through to get a picture

all folded up in its little pocket

I also wanted to thank everyone for the nice comments about my Father-in-Law (and poor pitiful me) and wanted to update. He was in the hospital for about 5 days and then was transferred to a rehabilitation facility. He should be in there for another week or so, depending on his progress. The stroke was mild and the main things it affected were his speech and swallowing. He's eating solid foods now (but can't handle liquids so all of his drinks have to be thick) and is speaking much better. They are also working on his balance and walking-he's having some trouble with those too. He's joking around and flirting with the nurses, so that's a good sign. He's complaining about doing nothing though, so I can't even imagine how hard it will be on my Mother-in-Law once he is home and in the house all day wanting to do some work and not being able to. So anyway, things are definitely improving. We've had some rain the past couple of days too, so my husband is home for a few days (but still really busy during the day, but at least not working until late into the night right now). So anyway, thanks.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Pitiful Me

This is a total pity party post. This is a rough time of year for me in the best of circumstances. It's not the best right now. My husband is a full time farmer. Spring is one of his busiest times, which means he's gone most of the time (or it seems like it) and when he does finally get home, he crashes on the recliner or the floor because he's exhausted. Plus he gets stressed out due to weather, equipment, etc. You name it. Well on Sunday my father-in-law had a stroke. He's in a good hospital and in good hands but to say he's a bad patient is an understatement. He doesn't want to be there and he's letting it be known. He won't talk to anyone because he's mad which is making it tougher on the doctors and nurses. He's 81 yrs old which is another big concern. The hospital is 2 hours away. So besides being extremely stressed out about his dad being so sick, my husband is having to do the tasks that his dad has always done. This means running equipment that he's not completely familiar with and having to ask for help (not easy for their family). Luckily his brothers are available and willing but one of them works full time and one lives in another state (he is here, though, to be with his dad-but he's helping with the farming too). Normally this time of year I'm very full of self pity but now, I can't be. Or I can't show it. Until I'm alone. So that's when all the great sewing and stamping blogs save me. I can read and admire and forget to feel sorry for myself. So thanks to all of you with wonderful blogs that keep my mind occupied.

And it all starts again in the fall during harvest. Hopefully without anyone being sick.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Hidden Stars-finally

Here is the quilt I showed a sneak peek of a couple weeks ago. I actually got it done right after I posted the sneak peek but I was waiting to wash it until I got it labeled. It took me a while to figure out how I wanted to label it, then I discovered that my old pigma pens were all dried up. So then it took me a few days to go buy a new pen. Then I decided I should wash it first, then label it, so that any writing would be able to set for a while before going through a wash. So I finally washed it today and here it is. It's about 50" x 63".

In the first pic it's hanging kinda wonky but it actually came out square. In order to take the pic I hung it over my curtain rod (with some of those bib clips-I knew those things would come in handy again someday) and it's not hanging perfect so it looks a bit out of shape. The 2nd pic is just a close-up. I quilted this one about 1/4" inside the four-square blocks and cornerstones, then went diagonally through each square of the four-square blocks and down the center of the sashing squares. I only do straight line quilting at this time and not in the ditch either, because I can't seem to stay in it right.

This quilt is called hidden stars because the stars just appear as a result of the sashing design. I did that with the method where you put a square on the corner of the rectangle and stitch down the diagonal center, then trim. It was super easy because I used my Angler tool so I didn't have to mark any of the diagonal lines. I don't do triangles if I can avoid it so this is the perfect way for me to make a star quilt. The fabric (other than the white) is from a set of fat quarters I got from Joann's a while back. I bought it because I liked the tin that it came in. :) I also did a scrappy binding on this and while I love the look, it was a pain in the butt to do. So at the time I told myself I would never do that again but when I look at it, I like it a lot, so I will probably put myself through the torture again. The pattern is from a book called Layer Cake, Jelly Roll and Charm Quilts (this fabric was not any of the above but I faked it).

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter-y stuff

Hope everyone had a nice Easter! Here is a pic of our cutie pie Easter bunnies (not really-we've had them since last summer) Lola and Shadow.

They will be one year old on April 22nd.

And here are the baskets I made for the kids to take eggs to Grandma and Grandpa. I used the cupcake holder on the Sweet Treats cricut cartridge and various Martha Stewart border punches for the trim. The ribbons on the baskets on the left are from American Crafts and I am not sure where the blue and brown ribbon is from. All papers are from Imaginisce except for the brown trim which is from Stampin' Up.

The eggs were decorated by punching shapes from adhesive vinyl, sticking them on a colored egg, and redying-then we removed the vinyl stickers. You can't see it but the one on the far right has blue dots on it.

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