Wednesday, November 28, 2012


Oh no, the heat pump isn't working!  No kidding, Richard called me at work yesterday and said the compressor wasn't working on the heat pump.  He put the unit in nine or ten years ago but he was stumped about why the compressor wasn't working.  He made a call to a heating and cooling company to come look at it.  I told him I hope he has a boatload of money.  Since he has always done this kind of work here we have not had to pay a lot of money for it.  The heating and cooling guy was supposed to call this afternoon and he didn't call at all.  Hopefully, Richard has now fixed the unit.  He replaced the capacitor a couple of years ago and he thinks it went bad.  It cost like ten dollars for a new one, so he replaced it again and now we have heat again.  He goes from vent to vent with his little lazer gun testing the temperature of the air coming out.  He seems to be satisfied by what he is finding.  We got a little chilled last night.  We have an electric fireplace in the living room (one of the best purchases we ever made) and a couple of little heaters.  We can also wrap up tight in fleece.  In the middle of the night I got up to go to the bathroom and felt chilly so I put a fleece nightgown over top of my nylon nightgown.  I had an extra fleece blanket at hand but I didn't use it.  I sleep under a fleece blanket all year, especially in the summer because of the air conditioning.  And for the winter we have fleece sheets on the beds.

Debbie, Diane and Tammy were going to Debbie's house today to work on Bonnie Hunter's mystery quilt.  I didn't go because Richard stayed home to take care of the heat pump.  I already have the first clue finished so if I had gone I would have worked on my Wild Child quilt.  I hated missing out.  Tomorrow I work from 11 to 4 so I will take my Wild Child so I can work on it between customers.  I have my choice of machines to sew on while at work and I have been choosing the new Viking Opal 650.  I am going to buy one when they open up sales to Viking employees.  It will be a great machine to take to retreats and to other's houses to sew for a day.  It uses the same feet and bobbins as my Viking SE.  I hate to move the SE around because I could bump it and mess up the computer in it.  The Opal sews just like my SE and I like that.

On a kitty note, Rosie is somewhat off her feed.  She is eating but not like usual and has puked several times.  That is not like her.  She doesn't act sick though.  I am keeping a close watch on her.  Here are some pictures of Rosie, the last one on my Almost Heaven quilt (Bonnie Hunter's Orca Bay) before it was quilted.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

New Mystery Quilt Started

I hope you enjoyed your Thanksgiving.  We had a nice dinner - turkey and ham and all the trimmings.  As usual, I had all the work to do myself.  I guess my family will never get the idea that I'd like to be invited somewhere else!  We didn't do any shopping afterwards.  I just didn't need anything bad enough to brave the crowds.  I would rather pay a little more and save Thanksgiving for family.  Besides, I don't have any idea what to get for anyone for Christmas, and I didn't need a new TV set or computer or anything that they put on sale for Black Friday.  I worked from 8-4 on Friday and stayed home all day today.
My favorite quilt designer, Bonnie Hunter, posted the first clue to her new mystery quilt on Friday morning.  She said to make 192 four-patches using the constant fabric (the only one that is not scrappy in this quilt) and the black-on white prints (background fabrics).  I guess I got a little overenthusiastic about it - I made 14 extra four-patches.  I love the colors together so I will save those extra ones to add to a quilt in the future, once I see how much of the orange/yellow print I have left.  I actually bought an extra half-yard of this fabric (most of the rest of the fabrics came out of my stash except for a few fat quarters I bought at JoAnn Fabrics yesterday).  The next clue will be posted next Friday morning so I am ready a little early.  In the meantime I will work on my Wild Child quilt that I started recently.  I am still putting the components of the blocks together so there is still plenty of work to do on it.

Richard and I put up the outside Christmas lights last weekend while it was still warm outside, but we didn't turn them on until Thanksgiving night.  Today I started moving furniture in the living room and Richard set up the Christmas tree for me.  We put up the four-foot prelit tree this year.  I put some gold garland on it and my favorite ornaments (sadly, had to throw a few broken ones away).  I love the Christmas lights and the electric fireplace.  Too bad there are no presents under the tree.  I guess I had better get busy and figure out what everyone wants for Christmas this year. 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Christmas Ornament

I found this really cute pattern for a Christmas ornament in a McCall's Quilting magazine from December 1997.  It wasn't until I was actually sewing the first one that I realized that it is made exactly like my 3-D Bowtie block that I made 3 quilts from.  You use half-square triangle blocks on the ends to make it look like a spool.  I think it is terrific and I intend to make quite a few of these.  It is smaller than it looks in the picture.  The red plaid block is just 4".  I bought a quarter yard of red and white stripe and a quarter yard of green and white stripe to make the spools.  Excuse the pins in the picture.  I haven't finished sewing this block yet.  I also need to add ribbon for a hanger.

Remember the fire in the previous post?  It was ruled arson.  Thank heavens no one was injured.  The owner had moved out because someone had stolen the copper wire in the house.  The bad thing was that it was way up on the hill where the streets are very narrow.  Only the small fire engines were able to get up there.  There are usually cars parked on both sides and you can only drive down the middle and most are curvy and steep.  I don't want to live up there.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Fire on the Hill!

This was the scene outside my front window last night.  There was a very large fire going on up on the hill.  It burned for quite some time before firefighters got it down to invisible from here.  It looked to me like a house burned and also caught some trees aflame.  I haven't heard this morning anything about this.  I sure hope no one was injured or worse.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

More Pics from the Retreat

Here are some more pictures of Bonnie Hunter's quilts from the trunkshow on Friday night.  It was wonderful seeing the quilts that I have seen so many times on her website and in her books.  I really enjoyed the trunkshow, I think we all did.  Every time another quilt was brought out there were ohhs and ahhs from the crowd.  Everyone was flashing cameras too.  I'll bet Bonnie was blinded by all the flashes!  She is really a good teacher, down-to-earth and just a regular person.  Enjoy the pictures!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Weekend with Bonnie Post !!

The first picture is of Bonnie Hunter as she is teaching our group.  She is a very clear speaker and gives a lot of information.  She is also very humorous, making jokes and laughing out loud.  After a short lecture she would come around and visit each one of us to make sure we knew what we were doing.  And when she found you had finished the block she would announce it to the whole group!

The second picture shows the fog we got up to on Sunday morning.  It was nice that we were only going a short distance to the building our class was being held in.  The fog soon burned off but the morning stayed cloudy.

The third picture is from the trunk show on Friday night.  It is called "Wild Child" and is the one I started last week.  I need 80 string blocks (already made) and 800 half-square triangles (I have made 540 so far).  I'd like to start putting mine together next week so I can devote myself to my Smith Mountain Morning quilt that I started in class on Saturday.  Then Bonnie's mystery quilt will start on Thanksgiving, so I expect to be busy for the next few months.

Lastly, this picture is of the blocks I made in class this weekend.  The first one is my Smith Mountain Morning block (I started a second block but decided I needed more variety in my fabrics, so I didn't finish it.)  The little block is a Pineapple Crazy quilt block and is it CRAZY!  I took one look and decided I would not do this class because I don't like paper piecing much and it was too fiddly and small for me to fool with.  Linda said I should try it anyway so I did, and made this block.  I do love the block but I am not sure I would ever do much work like this.  I'll try to post some more pictures this evening.  I need to spend today getting things ready to take to the polls tomorrow where I will be an election official in the Presidential election.  I will get up at 5 o'clock and be at my polling place by 5:30.  The polls are then opened at 6:30 and don't close until 7:30 at night.  I will finally get home around 8:15, tired and worn out by the long day.  I intend to spend the next day resting!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Weekend with Bonnie Hunter!

The first picture is Linda and me with Bonnie Hunter herself!  It was taken this morning at Pipestem State Park near Princeton, West Virginia.  I will be talking about this weekend in several posts because my blog host is not happy about too many photos at one time.  The second pic is Bonnie with the quilt we were there to learn to make.  It is called Smith Mountain Morning and is in her book "Scraps and Shirtails II."  We spent the day on that quilt lesson yesterday.  A picture of my block is on Bonnie's bllog "Quiltville's Quips and Snips."  There is also a terrific picture of Linda holding up the block she made this morning.  The third picture is Bonnie's BowTie quilt, the one that got me started making my bowties.  Her bowties were a lot smaller than mine.  I made a baby quilt, a throw, and a king-size quilt out of my bowties.  The last picture is Bonnie's Hexagon quilt that she has just finished after working on it for 12 years.  It is entirely hand sewn, mainly on airplanes and any time she has to wait a while.  You can't believe how gorgeous it was.  Look for more posts about this weekend.  I have a lot more to show!