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May 23, 2022
Weekly update: wildflowers, work in progress, and a lot of reading from With Strings Attached


Spring Bluff is just a mile from home so I walked there and back this afternoon. 

A bumble bee on wood betony (also called Canadian lousewort).  Wild geranium, Virginia creeper (with horsetail in the background), false Solomon's Seal, golden Alexander, horsetail, fleabane.

Blanding's Turtles are an endangered species that is closely monitored. From Wikipedia:  "Blanding's turtle is of interest in longevity research, as it shows little to no common signs of aging and is physically active and capable of reproduction into eight or nine decades of life."

This one is about a foot long. There are three ...

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May 22, 2022
Oh Scrap! : More Green Blocks from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

 Hurray for me!

I have been dragging my feet getting the paper pieced letter S done that I needed last month in the color pink.  Well look what I finally finished this week!

I also finished the letter I in the color green for May.  I still need a letter B that I think I will make in lime greens.  Maybe I can still finish that one by the end of the month.

I also finished my Chaser blocks (with the added flip corners) for the month.

I added them to my design wall with all the other completed blocks ...

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May 16, 2022
Weekly update: wildflowers, saying goodbye, music, the payoff, some music + quilts + reading from With Strings Attached

Wildflowers at Lyons Woods:  trillium, yellow rocket, garlic mustard. Bristly buttercup, forget-me-not, cow parsnip, white and purple violets. (It's a great year for violets -- there are a lot in our yard, too.)

Apple ("eating apple," the app called it), crabapple, brand-new oak leaves. 

 The memorial service for our good friend Bob was Saturday morning.   Such a wonderful tribute to a long life, well-lived!   (Here is his obituary.)  There were many people -- his widow, four daughters, most of the 17 grandchildren, and many of the great-grandchildren -- and so many friends.  Bob and Liz hosted more than 30 exchange students through ...

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May 15, 2022
Oh Scrap! : The Color Green from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

 The Rainbow Scrap Challenge color for May is green and I got a bit of a late start on pulling my scraps this month.  So I don't have a lot to share today.

I did sort and sew the center portions of all four of my Chaser blocks for the month.

And I did sort out all my green solid bits for my green letters this month.  I have even printed out my patterns.  But I still need to finish that pesky S in pink for April.  I hope to get all caught up this month!

I also sorted ...

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May 13, 2022
Weekly update: AAUW convention, raffle results, and reading from With Strings Attached


It was so wonderful to be in-person for the AAUW-IL convention!  (The 2020 convention was cancelled. The 2021 convention was by Zoom.)   I picked up Karen and Erika for the drive to the Doubletree in Naperville, about 75 miles away.    



Waukegan Area Branch attendees were Karen, Jo-An, me, Jolanta, and Erika. 

AAUW CEO Gloria Blackwell gave the keynote via a live link. AAUW awarded $5m in fellowships and grants to 260 scholars and programs in 2021 and will award $6m in 2022.  600 teen girls and 350 caregivers participated in the AAUW STEMed program.  1,000 women took the online ...

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May 8, 2022
Oh Scrap! : May UFO from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

Happy Mother's Day to all the Moms out there!

This is one f my favorite rhododendrons in my yard.  It is the slightest shade of pink.

 Indoors, I have been focusing on making a bunch of scrappy placemats.  The rest of my available time has been spent working on my May UFO project.

It is wonderfully scrappy too!

Because I am the only quilter in my family, almost all of the family quilty items have ended up at my house.  One of the items is this hand pieced hexagon quilt top.  I think the fabrics are all 1940's ...

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May 2, 2022
Weekly update: It's May! stash report, asterisks, OMG -- and good books from With Strings Attached


Tra la! It's May!
The lusty month of May!
That lovely month when ev'ryone goes
Blissfully astray. 

 I did say, "Rabbit, rabbit!" first thing today but I also remember listening to Julie Andrews sing The Lusty Month of May on our Broadway cast recording of Camelot.   

We are over the Covid sniffles and sneezes and out of the five-day isolation.  I took a follow up test at the walk-in clinic and was given the same advice as online, but so much better to hear it in person:  for the next five days (to Wednesday), wear a close-fitting mask ...

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May 1, 2022
Oh Scrap! : Happy May! from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

 The scraps have been flying this week but I don't have a lot that I am ready to share with you today.  I pulled a bunch more orphan blocks for my placemat project and have about six that just need quilting.  And I have been working on the quilts for the next Scrap Mixology Module I hope to publish next month.

I did finish the last two blocks I need for my Two Bit quilt.  Now I can start sewing up the quilt top and get it off my design wall.  I am planning for this quilt to be ...

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April 26, 2022
The Current Plan from Sew........This Is My Blog

I've been really struggling with Natalie's quilt.  I started with one plan then changed to a different plan.  Now I have come up with yet another plan.  Actually, another step in the plan.  Or something like that.  I needed to do something interesting with the 3.5" squares I ended up with after all that cutting, re-sizing, and trimming.  Maybe setting them on point, or putting sashing on two sides, or just about anything!  I got to thinking about a quilt I made a while back with tilted string blocks.  That quilt is one of my favorites. This ...

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April 25, 2022
Weekly update: turtles, music, sewing UPDATE!, and reading from With Strings Attached

It rained all day Friday -- 1.8" accumulation, which helps compensate for the severe drought we had in 2021.  Saturday was glorious:  80 degrees and sunny!  I walked the entire 2.5 mile trail at Pine Dunes.  I saw two turtles and three hawks.  

The Lake County Symphony Orchestra's annual jazz + classics concert was Saturday evening featuring five compositions by Dave Brubeck followed by Dvorak's New World Symphony.   Wonderful music!

There was a Covid outbreak among the church choir members after the Easter service.  No choir this morning and we were back to alternating pews and masks required ...

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April 24, 2022
Oh Scrap! : A Few More Blocks from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

 I scheduled some sewing time this weekend but with the sun shining and the scent of lilacs in the breeze, I am finding it really hard to stay indoors.

I did get three more of my RSC Two Bits Blocks done.  The quilt needed some orange blocks.  I now have just two more blocks to complete and I can finish this one up.  I am planning for this quilt to be one of my Hands2Help donations.

While I was in my orange scrap bin, I also cut a bunch of parts for my switch plate blocks. (Thanks for the name ...

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April 18, 2022
Weekly update: a cold Easter, memories, a finish!, and good reading from With Strings Attached


In fourth grade we had a unit of "weather legends."  One that I remember is, "If it rains on Easter Sunday it will rain for the next seven Sundays."   I recall the saying each year but I have never tracked the precipitation between Easter and what I now know is Pentecost.  This year, about the latest Easter can get, it's sunny but darned cold!  

Left: the paschal moon on Friday evening as I left the tenebrae service at church.

# # # # # # 

My mother died April 16, 2002 -- twenty  years ago yesterday.  I miss her still. I spent a half hour going ...

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April 17, 2022
Oh Scrap! : Still working with Pink from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

Happy Easter to all who celebrate!

Time to get out one of my favorite scrappy quilts.

 I still have a few more pink blocks to make for this year's RSC projects.

I have two paper pieced letters I need to make for my booth banner.  I finished my letter A.  The other letter I have to do is the letter S - having already made one in yellow and knowing how hard it was, I decided I needed to procrastinate...

So I started something new!

These will finish at 3 x 5".  All of the pieces for the block are ...

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April 10, 2022
Oh Scrap! : Pink Chaser Blocks from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

 The weather has been so lovely here I haven't been spending too much time in my sewing room.  So I don't have a lot of blocks to share this week.

I did finish the pink blocks for one of my RSC quilts.

This quilt was started at the end of 2021 so I have 5 of the colors done so far.
These Chaser blocks are so quick and easy to make!

Next I will be working on my two pink paper-pieced letter for my company banner.  Scraps are pulled - I just need to be in the right frame ...

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April 7, 2022
Weekly update: passages, a finish, hopscotch, and two great books from With Strings Attached

Signs of spring: the scilla have begun to bloom.  The aquilegia (columbine) have sprouted. Bring on the daffodils! 

In home improvement news, the 50-year-old windows were replaced this week.  (The exception is the five-pane bay window in the living room which has to be custom-ordered.)  My bathroom remodeling is finally done with the last wall patch plastered over and painted.  

We had to bundle up on Friday to plant blue pinwheels for Child Abuse Prevention Month.  It's one of the GFWC-Illinois signature projects.  

Sad news:  two Zion Women's Club members passed away last week at age 91 and ...

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April 3, 2022
Oh Scrap! : Transitioning from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

 It is a new month so that means a new RSC color.  April is pink so I have been busy sorting out my pink scraps and organizing which of my projects need the color.

But I still needed to finish up two more of my Bloom blocks in yellow for last month.  This project requires no pink blocks so I will not need to make any blocks for this quilt in April.

After sorting my pink scraps, I did get one of my Two Bits blocks completed.  I already made a few pink blocks last year for this project so ...

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March 28, 2022
Weekly update: spring, a fabric excursion, progress, and the unexpected + books from With Strings Attached


Chilly but sunny, no breeze this afternoon for a walk in the ravine at the end of our block. The skunk cabbages are in bloom -- this one has leaves beginning to unfurl.

Here are my new socks from Zkano, made in Alabama. Not only do they have great designs, but the socks are very comfortable (nonbinding tops that stay up).

On Thursday I enjoyed the luncheon meeting of the Clara Cummings Book Club. The entertainment was a reenactor portraying Princess Diana. She cleverly began, "You know I am dead, of course," so we the audience knew that she knew what ...

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March 27, 2022
Oh Scrap! : More Yellow from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

 I actually sewed quite a bit this week.

But I sure do not feel like I have much to show for it!

I did sew this little 4" tall block.  I think it took me most of the week!

I am looking forward to April's RSC color to see what letters I get to sew next.

I also sewed up two more of my Bloom blocks.

I still have two more yellow blocks to make.  I have the HSTs finished but they need to be trimmed and sewn into blocks.  It shouldn't take me too long to finish ...

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March 21, 2022
Weekly update: small projects, construction begins, and two books from With Strings Attached


I made hamantaschen for Purim but the dough lost the triangle shape during baking. In essence I made shortbread cookies topped with jam.  Though they weren't pretty, they were tasty.

The St. Patrick's Day soda bread turned out better.   We're still enjoying it and leftover crock-pot corned beef.  . 

# # # # #

Spring Comes First to the Willows is a young adult novel from the time I was a young adult.  I think of that phrase every spring when the willows green up.   I don't remember anything about the book other than its title so I've put in an ...

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March 20, 2022
Oh Scrap! : RSC Blocks from Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework

 The sunny days have turned rainy here so I was able to spend some time in my sewing room.

I finished up all of my Chaser Blocks in Yellow for the month of March.

I love this project more with every month's worth of blocks added.

I also finished two more of my Bloom blocks.  I still have four more yellow ones to make for the quilt design I am making.  Hopefully I can get to them next week - they are all cut, I just need to sew them up.

And lastly, I finished up my letter R for ...

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