Friday, October 31, 2014

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? Little Things!

Hi, all!

Here it is, Friday again - and you know what that means!  It's time to get our whoop whoop on!!  Are you ready?

Can you believe it's the last day of October?  Time flies when you're having fun   For me this week has been filled with working on projects in progress, like this commission quilt…

and this Christmas stocking...

and some cute Christmas ornaments for an upcoming adoption fundraiser - this one...

and the one at the top of the post.  It's kind of fun working on little projects that finish up fast!

Hopefully next week I'll have some finished projects to share, but for nowthis is what I've got!  Small, but it makes me whoop!

And here's a special little happy dance for this week…

Can I get a whoop whoop?


And now it's your turn! 

What have you been working on this week?
What's made you dance the happy dance?

Share - we want to dance right along with you!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight - 

Hope to see you there!



PS - Saturday is the beginning of National Adoption Month, and I'll have something special going on starting next week to focus on it and help #bringNathanaelhome!  Stay tuned!!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Make-A-List Monday - 59 Days and Counting...

Hi, all!

Fall is arriving with a vengeance here in middle Tennessee - the weather is cooler, the leaves are finally starting to turn, and my friend has started his annual countdown to Christmas on Facebook!  So I have a daily reminder of just how few days it is until Christmas. So I guess we can add a sense of urgency to that list of things that mark fall's arrival!

It was a busy week but I did manage to get a lot done!  Let's see how it went.

1.  Contact repair people to get quotes for the damage repair work in the garage.
Done!  Two roofers came today, a drywall guy came last week, and I spoke to the electrician and garage door guys.  Now I'm just waiting for the estimates to roll in...

2.  Take photos of the quilts to sell for the adoption at my friend's barn.
Done! You can see one of them at the top of this post, and you'll see more next week as I put together some special posts.  Stay tuned!

3.  Finish the back-stitching on Nathanael's stocking.
Done!! Yipee!!!  I just love this one, and it makes me smile to think of it hanging with all the others this year, even if Nathanael isn't here yet.

4.  Assemble the blocks for the commission quilt.
Done!  This top is finished, and now I'm trying to work out how I'm going to quilt it. (There is a narrow gray border around it that's not in this picture.)

5. Write up an estimate for another t-shirt commission quilt.
Done!  This is going to be a really interesting quilt, but probably not until after Christmas!

6.  Quilt two quilts for the ministry.
Done!  Here's one of them, and you'll see the other one in the pictures for #9 below...

7.  Complete a quilt top for the ministry.
Done!  This came to us as just the square on-point panel - the triangles are shirting plaids, so adding another plaid for the large outer corners was the perfect touch! Oh, and the top's not only completed, it's quilted too!

8.  Participate in a Jelly Roll Race at church tonight with my Sewing Siblings!
Done!  It was a small group, but we had fun and finished several tops!

9.  Keep up with all ministry needs that may arise.
Done!  We gave away five quilts last week

This quilt went to a retired schoolteacher who just found out she has liver cancer… (it's also the second quilt I quilted this week)

This quilt went to a young man who was involved in a very serious auto accident recently, and is dealing with health issues related to that

This comfort quilt went to a woman who just had a hip replacement, and while recovering, her 95-year old father passed away.

And this one went to a man who went in for a routine outpatient procedure that had complications. He is in the SICU, unable to wean off the ventilator.

We also gave away one more, to the wife of a gentleman we gave a quilt to last week.  He has cancer, and she is his primary caregiver.  She's been having a rough time and we wanted to send her a quilt-y hug.  Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of it!  But it was a beautiful blue and yellow quilt.

The current quilt count is at 271 for the year, 943 all-time!

And now, here's what I'll be working on this week…

1.  Make a back for the pieced commission quilt.

2.  Decide on the quilting design for that quilt.

3.  Order the Kona background fabrics for the t-shirt commission quilt.

4.  Write the special posts for next week.

5.  Meet with a friend to discuss how to quilt her finished top.

6.  Finish four cross-stitched stockings for another friend. (She did the cross-stitch, just needs help turning them into stockings!)

7.  Finish Nathanael's stocking!

8.  Keep up with any ministry needs that arise - and it looks like a busy week, because I've already got six requests!

So that's definitely enough to keep me busy and out of trouble this week!  OK, maybe not out of trouble, but maybe I won't get into as much trouble as usual… ;-)  Oh, and by the way, you want to know something weird?  Remember how I worked so hard to get my house clean for the party at my house?  Well, it's been a week and a half and the house is STILL CLEAN!!!  I have no idea how that's happened, but I sure do like it!

So now, the question is - - - what are YOU working on this week?



Friday, October 24, 2014

Blogger's Quilt Festival - Fly Away Home!!

Hi, all!

Quilt Market has rolled around again, and you know what that means for those of us who don't get to go to Market - it's time for the Bloggers' Quilt Festival!!

This year I want to share a very special quilt with you.  It has humble beginnings, being made with the scraps from this wonderful quilt made from a pattern designed by Karrie Lyne Winter of Freckled Whimsy.

Karrie was a guest blogger for this year's Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge, and came up with this fabulous design, which I just had to try out!

The polka dot fabric was originally purchased by my daughter when she was trying to adopt from Ethiopia several years ago.  She hoped to make a quilt for a little boy with them, but due to delays in the adoption process in Ethiopia, they had to drop their plans to adopt at that time.  When they had their second little girl, she gave me the fabrics to use for the quilt ministry, and they became the basis for my version of Karrie's quilt.  But see all those triangle blocks?  They created a lot of waste triangles, which I hated to throw away.  

So I turned them into a big pile of half-square triangles and threw them up on the design wall.  Because of the design of the first quilt, they were a variety of sizes.  This made for some interesting design problems!  

I finally came up with a layout that I liked, but couldn't decide on a background fabric.  I tried grays, creams, white, taupe - nothing was quite right.  Then my sister and her daughters came over and put in their two cents - red, definitely red!  Fortunately I had a big chunk of Chinese red that was perfect!  Lots of measuring, piecing, a little frog-stitching (rip-it, rip-it) and a big dose of perseverance, and the top was complete!

Acres of small random meander quilting - red thread on the red fabric, then cream on the half square triangles.

And a hand-quilted heart in the very center of the quilt.

Cream polka dots on red with a stripe of multi-colored polka dots on cream make up the back.  The same multi-colored polka dots make the binding!

 My daughter and her family are now in the process of adopting a little boy from China that they have named Nathanael.  Nathanael is almost three and is profoundly deaf, as is our youngest granddaughter, Emmy.  This quilt will be his first annual quilt when they finally bring him home. (I make each grandchild a quilt each year for Christmas.)  I've named it "Fly Away Home" because to me, the corners look like birds flying towards the center of the quilt, and the blue center represents the love radiating outwards towards our future grandson.  And of course, red represents his home country, China!  We hope to have Nathanael in his forever home early next year!!  You can read more about their adoption journey here if you want.

 Many people in our family had a part in this quilt - not just my "blood kin" but my quilting family also!  My daughter contributed the  fabric, originally intended for a child to be adopted from Ethiopia; a quilt designed by my blog friend Karrie for our annual charity quilt challenge yielded the basic building blocks for this second quilt; and my sister and nieces came up with the perfect background color!  So it really was a "family affair"!


If this is your first time visiting my blog, I hope you've enjoyed yourself and that you'll come back and visit often!  We "whoop" it up on Fridays at my "Can I Get A Whoop Whoop" linky party, and each spring I host the Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge.  And there are always pictures of the beautiful quilts our church's quilt ministry creates on the blog.  Come join us!!!



Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? Let's Cheer For Rita!

Hi, all!

Here we go - it's Friday again, 
and time to get your whoop whoop on!!  
Are you ready?

This week, I am once again woefully short on things I can show off that are whoop-worthy - most of what I've been working on is in the not-very-interesting stage still.  But - - - Rita has been on a roll this week, so I thought I'd share some of the pretty things she has been working on!

First of all, there's this beautiful butterfly quilt she finished last week.  The paper-pieced blocks came from Sharon, and Rita provided the setting and the piano key border.

These are such amazing blocks - the detail is wonderful!

And here's a few of the orphan block quilts she finished this week...

A beautiful monkey wrench block quilt...

A really nice setting of nine-patch blocks...

And check out this grouping of varied orphan blocks!  
Isn't that fun!

Wednesday night she brought her magic bag to church.  Do you remember Mary Poppins' magical carpet bag, that held so many things?  Well, Wednesday night Rita started pulling orphan block tops out of her magic bag - each one gorgeous and unique - and she had ten new quilt tops in that amazing bag!  I wish I had thought to take a picture of the stack of tops when she finished pulling them out - it was pretty amazing!

But it's not all work in The Sweatshop these days - Piper brought our newest and smallest member of the group to supervise us today - her 7 month old daughter!  Holding court on a pile of quilts on the floor, she kept us all working - but Rita decided to take a break and get down on her level!

They had quite the conversation down there before little Bailey Ann told Rita to get back to work!

So - can Rita get a Whoop Whoop??


And now it's your turn!

What have you been working on this week?

What's got you doing the happy dance?

Share - we want to dance right along with you!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight -

Hope to see you there!!



Monday, October 20, 2014

Make-A-List Monday - Back to the Routine!

Hi, all!

Well, it's Monday, and I'm still alive!  Woohoo!!  And the house is clean, so I don't have to worry about that for a while - double woohoo!!  Last week was crazy and I'm glad to see things getting back to the normal routine for a while. And it's time for

So let's get right down to it and see how last week's list went...

1.  Call the drywall guy!
Nope!  As many of you kindly reminded me, it's smart to get the leak fixed first before having the drywall repaired… I've had no luck getting the roofer out yet, but the insurance adjuster did come by today, so at least things are moving along!

2.  Finish the cleaning and decorating for the fundraiser.
Done!  And you know, I didn't take a single picture of how the house looked set up!  So now there's no proof….  ;-)

3.  Work on the commission quilt.
In progress!  I've put together all the components, now it's time to start assembling the blocks.

4.  Do the backstitching on Nathanael's stocking.
In progress!  I'e done about half of the backstitching, and hope to get it finished this week.  This is what I work on in the evenings!

5.  Take photos of the quilts to sell for the adoption fund at my friend's barn.
I didn't get to this one, mainly because we had pretty nasty weather here until Friday, and I spent all day Friday cooking!  But it's on the schedule for tomorrow morning.

6.  Quilt two quilts for the ministry.
I didn't get to this one at all.  Bad quilter!

7.  Keep up with ministry needs as they arise.
Done!  This quilt went to a gentleman battling cancer; it was pieced by Marie and quilted by her husband, Tommy…

This quilt went to a young man who had knee surgery this week; it was pieced by Deb…

That's Piper, photobombing this pic!

This beautiful orphan block quilt went to a woman just diagnosed with breast cancer; the blocks came from Sharon and were arranged and pieced together by the Orphan Block Queen, Rita…

Those are beautiful paper-pieced butterflies and moths!

This quilt went to a woman who diagnosed with throat cancer…

This one is going to a 10 year old girl with a serious genetic disorder…

And this pretty quilt is now gracing the bed of a woman who just had back surgery.

Whew!  Quite a few this week!  For those of you interested, we are up to 266 for the year and 938 all-time - only 62 left until we have given away 1000!!

8.  Work on posts for a giveaway/fundraiser coming later this week.  Stay tuned!!
Done!  If you missed the post, you can see it here.  There's still time to get in the running for a $25 gift certificate to Noonday Collection, if you are interested.  Details are in the post.

OK - like I said, it will be good to get back to "normal" around here!  Let's see what's on tap for this week…

1.  Contact repair people to get quotes for the damage repair work in the garage.

2.  Take photos of the quilts to sell for the adoption at my friend's barn.

3.  Finish the back-stitching on Nathanael's stocking.

4.  Assemble the blocks for the commission quilt.

5. Write up an estimate for another t-shirt commission quilt.

6.  Quilt two quilts for the ministry.

7.  Complete a quilt top for the ministry.

8.  Participate in a Jelly Roll Race at church tonight with my Sewing Siblings!

9.  Keep up with all ministry needs that may arise.

A busy week once again, but it will feel much more normal to be spending time behind my sewing machine than it did spending it behind the vacuum cleaner!

So now, the question is… what are YOU working on this week??



Friday, October 17, 2014

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? Some of Last Week's Lovelies...

Hi, all!

Here it is, Friday again - and you know what that means!

That's right - it's time to get your whoop whoop on!
Unfortunately, I didn't get much done that I can show off this week  - I did manage to get the girlies' annual quilts cut out on our vacation, and also cut out the commission quilt and started sewing the block components together this week.  But nothing much camera worthy.
The picture at the top is one of the tops that was donated for us to auction to raise money for Nathanael's adoption, and it was pretty, so it's my art for the day.
And I have also spent a lot of time this week cleaning house, getting ready for a Noonday Collection fundraiser party for my daughter.  If you'd like to read about Noonday Collection and how it's helping us do Christmas, Intentionally, click here to read my blog post from Thursday.  You might even choose to participate and become eligible to win a $25 gift certificate to Noonday Collection!

But you all provided some lovely inspiration this week, so I'm going to share some of your pretties!!

This beautiful string quilt by Alycia of Alycia Quilts...

This wonderfully colorful quilt from Jan of I Quilt For Fun...

An awesome shirting quilt from Katy of Katy Quilts...

And this amazing feather quilt by Sophie of Sophie Junction!

There was so much more beauty linked up last week, but I need to get this posted so I can work up a quilt pattern for a friend!


And now it's your turn!

What have you been working on this week?

What's got you dancing the happy dance?

Share with us - we want to dance right along with you!

The linky party will stay open until Sunday midnight - 

Hope to see you there!



Thursday, October 16, 2014

Christmas, Intentionally!

Hi, all!

I don't know about you, but when I start thinking about Christmas presents, I think about how we (personally) always seem to go overboard each year.  So many presents are given that the value and meaning of each seems to get lost.  So this year, I'm trying to be a bit more intentional in my gift giving.  I'm giving each person fewer gifts, but trying to put more thought into each one.  I'm making gifts when I can. And when I purchase a gift, I'm trying to purchase wisely, and where my money can make a difference not only for the person I'm gifting, but also the people who created the item I'm buying.  

And that's why I'm buying many of my gifts from Noonday Collection this year.  

Noonday Collection states that their mission is to use fashion and design to create economic opportunity for the vulnerable.  They provide labor at a living wage, no-interest loans, scholarship programs, emergency assistance and long term trade relationships for 28 artisan groups in ten countries.  They also give a portion of sales from adoption trunk shows to help place children in their forever homes - which explains how I became aware of this company.  

I went to the Noonday Collection show that my daughter hosted as her one of her fundraisers - and I was blown away by the beauty and quality of the jewelry, accessories and bags that this company sells.  Hopefully you know by now that I would not promote anything that I didn't believe in wholeheartedly - I like this product and the company so much that for a (brief, totally insane) moment, I actually considered becoming a representative! 

At a Noonday Collection party, you get to see, feel, and try on many of the jewelry, accessories and purses that the company sells.  You can see the beautiful quality in each item.  And believe me, you'll have a hard time whittling down your "want" list!  Of course, I'm a sucker for glittery things, as my husband will tell you…

This bracelet is one of my absolute favorites!  It's made with paper wrapped beads on memory wire, so it retains its shape, and it doesn't clamp down on my wrist when I move my hand.  I think this will be coming home to my house very soon!

And you'll never guess what this sparkly evening clutch is made of - it's woven with repurposed cassette tape!  I never would have guessed that when I picked it up to look at it more closely.  

And this necklace is made of up-cycled metal and artillery - could you ever imagine bullet casings being remade into something so beautiful? 

And oh, this bag - how gorgeous is that?  Beautifully woven and handcrafted, with room enough to hold just about everything and a little bit more - I love it!!


This Saturday, I'll be hosting a Noonday Collection party at my house - which is why I've been cleaning like a mad-woman!  

I would so love it if each and every one of you could come to my house and enjoy some good food and try on these beautiful pieces.  Unfortunately, that's not an option for most of you!

But - if you're interested in being a bit more intentional in your Christmas giving this year, and in being a part of this adoption fundraiser, you can join in the fun by ordering on-line!

Simply go to the Noonday Collection site, make your choices, then be sure that Rebecca Daniels is listed as the ambassador and type in Sarah Craig in the trunk show information.  That way, the sales will get credited to my show, and 20% of the sales will go to help bring home our Chinese grandson, Nathanael!

And I have a special bonus for one of my "virtual" party guests - if you make a purchase, your name will be put in the hat to win a $25 Noonday Collection gift certificate!  The winner can use it to buy a little something for herself - I won't tell!!  

My party is this Saturday, October 18th, but the on-line party will stay open until Thursday, October 23rd at midnight, CST.  I'll announce the winner of the $25 gift certificate on Monday, October 27th!

By the way, this isn't a sponsored post - I'm not receiving any compensation from Noonday Collection.  The gift certificate is a gift from me to whoever wins, as a thank you for helping us #bringNathanaelhome!

Are you doing anything special this year to make your Christmas intentional?  I'd love to hear about your plans!!  Do you know of a company like Noonday Collection that benefits others through your purchases?  Let us know about them too!