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Monday, February 23, 2015

Boston Round 1

I'm here in MA for some training, and I'll be here for two months. Boston is about a 40 minute drive from where I'm staying, so I plan to visit as often as possible to see as much as I can. It's a little challenging right now since everything is buried under 6 feet of snow.

This is my favorite meme right now!

One day I'm going to park in somebody's driveway and take pictures of the residential areas. It's insane. I saw an icicle that went from the top of a two story house to about a foot from the ground. No joke. That house is on a road where I can't stop and take a picture...

I know for the people who live here it's a big hassle, but for me it's more like "lookit all da snow!"
This is Quincy Market in the heart of downtown.
I have had chowda (clam chowder) almost every day. I've tried it at several different restaurants. It tastes different and wonderful every time! I got it in the bread bowl and seriously had an emotional moment over my soup today. This place also had lobster mac n cheese, but I was too full to try it. Next time...
In the seating area there were rotating musicians. This young lady was only 17 and pretty darn good. You can look her up on youtube if you are interested.
This family of musicians was really great, and fun to watch! They were hard to photograph because they moved so much while they were playing. The girl on the right was so animated!
Cheers! Not the real cheers, but close enough! (That's coffee in my hand - no drinking and driving!)
This outing was very brief because it started snowing. But the sun went down early enough to snap this pretty photo of Faneuil Hall. (Don't ask me how to pronounce that... I have no idea.)
Ok, so one week of my trip is now over. Seven more to go!

Sunday, February 22, 2015


So I'm in Massachussetts right now, but it was quite an adventure to get here. You may have heard, the Snow-pocalypse hit New England. Well, because of that I got stuck in Philadelphia for two days.
The first day I didn't leave the airport. The USO in the airport had rooms where you could stay overnight for free, and even had food all day, free wifi, showers, and everything. It was pretty cool!

But the second day I met a couple who was also stuck at the USO, heading to Boston. The wife had lived in Philly for awhile and they were going to leave the airport for the day. So I tagged along!
Cheesesteak. I've never cared for it. But I had never had it in Philly. I'm a convert! The photo above is Geno's but across the street was Pat's. We got steak at both and shared them to do taste testing. Apparently in the summer the customers stand out on the street and shout at each other over who's steak is better! Pat's was better. Like, lick the cheese off the paper better.

It was cold like I've never felt cold before. So our adventure out didn't last very long. We went very quickly through the "liberty" area. Liberty Hall was like the State Capitol building way back when. Or something like that. Anyway, here is where they signed the Declaration of Independence.

And here's the Liberty Bell. Which is broken because they had to use so many different kinds of metal to make it that it was fragile. But it was used to call the representatives to meetings and stuff. So it was special to them and they kept it.
See that man in the background on the left? That's Mike. Him and his wife Suzie were on their way back from their honeymoon in Aruba? Cancun? I forgot... somewhere VERY warm. They are super sweet and I'm glad to have met them!

So, that was my little Philadelphia excursion!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!

I finished up another round of Wilton Cake Decorating classes and this was the cake I made at the end of the Fondant class to demonstrate the techniques we learned.

I'm travelling today, heading to America for a business trip. Since I had to leave on Valentine's Day this cake was Rob and the kids.

Inspiration cake was found on Pinterest.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Winter's Lane Quilt

This is another project I started more than a year ago and FINALLY finished this year. I made the quilt top in just a few hours, but then had the genius idea that I should hand quilt it! I don't know why I do these things to myself... But it turned out really pretty and I'm glad I did it.

Here's a closeup of the stitching. I used embriodery floss so it would really stand out.

Have you snuggled under a hand quilted quilt? They are just so much more comfy than machine quilted. If it didn't take me like a year to get one quilted I would probably hand quilt everything!

Fabric: Moda's Winter's Lane
Pattern: I just kind of made it up... I think I've seen a pattern like this before, but I can't remember a name. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Sewaholic Shirts

I got a few items of clothing made so far this year, but only have two of them photographed so far. 

Both of these tops are from Sewaholic Patterns

Renfrow Shirt

It was really cold outside, so my face is kind of funny in this photo! But the shirt is warm and snuggly. I used some ribbed knit from and it is very soft. This is my favorite knit shirt that I have made so far! I made a size 14 and it fits perfectly. I really like the long sleeves, but some people might think they are a little too long. I did alter the hem to have the curved shirt tail look. Oh my goodness, that hem seam is crazy! I really need a cover stitch machine for nice hems. I didn't have green thread on hand so I thought I could get away with white. Not with those crazy uneven stitches!

Granville Shirt

Next up is Granville, Sewaholic's newest release. I downloaded the PDF pattern almost the second she posted that it was available. You guys, this is a NICE shirt pattern! I made a size 14 with no alterations. I thought it might be a little snug around the waist, but it's not. I think I could have taken it in a little at the hips, but I really like the flair. It makes a nice shape on the sides!

The fabric on this one is a dot pattern from Robert Kaufman. Funny story - those dots started out white. I washed the fabric with a piece of black twill for some pants for Rob. Not a smart move. But the good news is that I like the fabric better with the muted dots. The bright white dots made me dizzy! So tradegy avoided, but just barely!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Twister Quilt finally finished!

I started this quilt in October of 2012! Yikes. I actually had it finished and quilted by March of 2013, but never got it blogged.
 I started sewing the binding on by hand, and got half way finished. Then it sat for almost two years. That's so pathetic! I FINALLY finished it this month! It only had two sides of binding to finish stitching!
I used the line "Circa 1934" from Moda and used 2 layer cakes plus yardage to get all the fun pieced borders. The center of the back is a piece of fabric that looked like labels. I am so happy to have this quilt finished, and I love it!

I have taught the Twister as a class twice now. Today was the second time. I like to see how different fabric lines make such different quilts. 

This one used Batiks with a white border. It's very striking!

This one placed the blocks in a diagonal pattern which created an interesting effect with the pinwheels. 
 This is one of my favorites from the class last year. I love the rainbow, and the black in the border has multi-colored dots which looks awesome with the bright fabrics!
 I did blog about this mini heart version. In 2013. Where has time gone!?
All these quilts were made using the Twister Ruler, or the 'Lil Twister for the small one.

Friday, January 2, 2015

2014 Crafting Statistics

I took some time off of work before Christmas, and then we got the 26th granted as a day off for federal employees. So I ended up with almost two weeks off of work! With all that free time, and no projects with deadlines, I spent a lot of time looking through my photos and playing with statistics! I hope you'll endulge me and enjoy my mosaics of all the sewing I did in 2014!


1 & 2. 1600 Quilts; 3. Briar Rose Quilt; 4. Lexington Kaleidoscope Quilt; 5. Trip Around the World; 6. Honey Honey Layer Cake Quilt; 7. Mandala Quilt; 8. Kaleidoscope Quilt; 9. Southwestern Chevron; 10. X and + Quilt; 11. Southerwestern Tiles Quilt; 12. You Zig, I'll Zag


1. Rain Jacket; 2. Star Wars PJs; 3. Bianca Dress; 4. Clover Pants; 5. Josephine Blouse; 6. Bianca Maxi Dress; 7. Maxi Skirt; 8. Maxi Dress; 9. Halloween Costumes; 10. Jedediah Pants; 11. PJ pants; 12. School House Tunic

Small Projects

1. XO Table Runner; 2. Valentine Mini; 3. Cathedral Window; 4. Swoon Pillow; 5. Pinwheel Table Runner; 6. Lexington Pillow; 7. Rock Candy Table Topper; 8. Backpack; 9. Plus Table Runners

Number crunching:

I was surprised by how many quilts I made in 2014! That's about one per month. Of course most of them are still just tops and not finished, but I still count that. This is probably not the most sewing I have ever done in one year, but it's still pretty productive! I really enjoy sewing and it's still my favorite pastime.

Future Sewing:

If I was to make a sewing resolution for 2015 it would be to get some quilt tops actually quilted and finished. I also have the Renfrow shirt pattern and the Jalie Jeans pattern that I need to try out. And I will make a couple more pairs of Jedediah pants for Rob.

Thanks for reading my blog, and for encouraging my hobbies!