Thursday, October 22, 2020
Friday, October 16, 2020
It seems like it has be eons since I shared an actual finish! Truth be told, I really have had several, but there was secret sewing involved and custom quilts delivered without "finish" photos, so I had to wait... and wait... and WAIT. Lol!
First up was the baby quilt of "Papa's T's" - Papa sacrificed six of his Harley Davidson t-shirts. I rushed to get it finished before Grandma and Papa made the trip to visit Greyson, but as promised, Grandma sent photos!
I think that the first story Papa shared with Greyson about his ride to Silverton, CO and the little guy is already planning his first ride there.
Below is the back of the quilt featuring some fun novelty fabric of vintage license plates...
He seems to love it as much as Grandma and Papa did! 💖
Tuesday, October 13, 2020
Has it really been only a week since I last posted??? It flew by! Yet there was so much that went on...
My To-Do List consisted of...
❧ Piecing the top for the third memory quilt in a month.
❧ Write the last Kansas City Star quilt block pattern.
Did I meet those two goals? I can answer with a resounding "Yes!"
Though there were plenty of distractions along the way, I completed both tasks just yesterday... well, last night. For me to continue working of "quilty" projects into the evening is unusual, but the daunting task of that last block pattern was staring me in the face since I put it out there for the world to read. I still need to proof-read and send off to the testers, I can confidently say "It is DONE!".
As I considered why I had been putting it off I realized that while the Pieces From The Past Sew Along continues into March of next year, writing that final pattern drove home the reality that it is 2/3 complete.
It is like reading a good book for many... when the final pages of a book are read and the back cover closed and set aside, there is a brief time of mourning. I know this is the case for me, anyway. Missing the characters of the book I usually have to pause for a day or so before picking up a new book with a new story-line and characters. But now is not the time for that pause...
I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know my ever-increasing audience, the various participants of the sew along and pattern testers as the series has progressed. You have all become special friends to me! And I am not ready for it to be over. So, with resolve, I will continue to pour my heart into the writing of the stories and history featured in the series and savor each moment along the way.
The t-shirt quilt offered a good distraction from the pattern writing as well. I participated in the Saturday Sew-In over at The Inquiring Quilter and was happy to share that I had the top pieced and ready for borders by the end of Saturday.
So, the pattern writing and the pieced top were completed between Saturday and Monday... what happened to the days prior to Saturday???
We ran away! We ran to the mountains and the San Isabel National Forest.
Our view was spectacular! The same view as when we were there in May, but in the full glory of fall colors. The golden glow of the aspens was nearly blinding when in the center of a grove. The reds of the scrub oak or oak brush was stunning.
Last year we had hiked the road toward the top of the mountain, but gave up before reaching the top. Dave was insistent that we could make it to the top... I was game for a long day's hike with a packed lunch. He preferred the idea of making the journey in the truck using 4-wheel drive.
I was unsure and bit of a nervous wreck inside, but simply stated "if you really think we can make it safely, ok." **gulp** 😖
We did indeed make it to the end of the road. There was not a big open meadow as he had suspected. Instead, the road just ended. There was a small campfire ring made of stones that had been used sometime in the past. We contemplated setting up camp and making the journey down in the morning... Dave decided it was better to make our way down after enjoying the view and our lunch.
We began the journey down the hill and the screaming in my head was deafening. Dave was carefully and slowly maneuvering our way back down the trail and I was shocked to realize the journey UP was less scary than the going DOWN. **whimper** We were through the worst of the hairpin turns and rocks when suddenly there was a strange sound... a rock had punctured the side wall of the right rear tire and losing air fast.
Dave calmly climbed out of the truck and began the process of changing the tire with even thinking about it or grumbling. Which is a good thing because there was plenty of grumbling and whining going on in my own mind for the two of us. (I can laugh now, but it was not funny at the time.)
When we returned to our campsite it was only about 3:30 but I needed a small glass of wine to help me loosen up and relax. I grabbed one of my Camping Journal postcard blocks and within a few minutes I felt better. Dave had commented "well, that was fun!" I just looked at him and he was like "wasn't it?" I replied with "it was an adventure. I'm not sure I would call it fun!" I kept stitching...
The time for camping season is drawing to a close, but we are hopeful that we will be able to head south (maybe to Palo Duro near Amarillo, TX) for a few days before the camper comes off the truck for the winter... Oh, but wait... Dave and his buddy may be headed out for a deer season at the end of October. Hmmmmm.... maybe we can sneak another trip to the south in November. I can be hopeful anyway. I suppose the season has to end sometime. **sigh**
Time to head to my studio and get something done. What will it be?
❧ Ten postcards for the second postcard swap hosted by my friend, Mark Montano. These cards will feature some quilted fabric scraps with words of affirmation and quotes from Anne of Green Gables. The cards have to be in Mark's possession by November 1.
❧ I'll be writing again... the next letter and pattern for the sew along will be published October 22.
❧ If the red flannel backing for the t-shirt quilt arrives, I'll be quilting that as well.
There you go folks! You were the precise motivation I needed to meet my goals. By my simply putting it out there for the world to see gave me focus. Thanks for holding me accountable!
What are YOU working on this week?
Leave a comment... I love to hear from you.
Monday, October 5, 2020
A few weeks ago I received a "soft package" in the mail, unexpectedly. It was from our friend Susan. Dave and I were honored to be able to assist her last summer when her husband, Dave's college roomie, passed away suddenly. She was left with a basement full of tools and equipment that she didn't know what to do with or what their value was.
We made a quick trip to Lincoln, Nebraska to create an inventory list with actual values as well as realistic re-sale values. But while there, Susan, who is also a quilter, and I managed to sneak away for an afternoon with a third friend from a nearby town and visited the International Quilt Museum.
The entire story of that trip is told over on "In Memory Of".
In August, Susan and her daughter had taken a vacation road trip to Colorado to visit one of her husband's sisters and we had planned on making arrangements for a meet-up somewhere in between where they were staying and where we live, but the timing and our schedule simply did not allow it.
She shared in her letter that while with her sister-in-law they had visited several quilting shops during the "shop hop" week and that she thought of me. Upon her return home she had once again visited the "First Friday" event at the IQM and recalled our visit the year before and purchased a fat-quarter that "caught her eye" with the museum's logo on it.
What a sweet note... It certainly brought a smile to my face! Now I just need to have some sort of great and inspired idea to use it.
Speaking of letters...
Last week I published another POW letter and Kansas City Star quilt block. The author of this particular letter had been featured in a magazine article in 2009 telling of his parent's fleeing East Prussia during WWII.
The article was discovered by my letter translator, Amy and it states that the testimonies of the war and post-war events were typed up by the Grandsons of Walter Hesselbarth - Klaus' sons. I had expressed my desire to locate the Hesselbarth family...
And just a few hours after publishing the letter/pattern I had a message from a reader stating that she had located an obituary for him from 2012, but it included the son's name and mailing address.
In hopes that he has not moved, I wrote a letter telling him of his father's letter requesting assistance with cashing a check and receiving some provisions - Tobacco and cigarettes, specifically.
With fingers crossed and a little prayer whispered, I sent it off.
How long does it take for a letter to make it from the United States to Albstadt, Germany??? According to my quick search, the average delivery time is 12.9 days. Is this total days? Or is it business days?
I guess I need to keep busy and a bit distracted for at least the next 10 days.
I have had some recent finishes and some secret sewing with pattern testing. But I will leave that for another post...
My To-Do list this week will include:
❧ Piecing the top for the third memory quilt in a month. This one features some college shirts from football and dance team events. I have the blocks backed with fusible stabilizer so piecing it shouldn't take much time.
What else??? Sadly, I think I will be spending less time in my studio than I would like, but sometimes there are simply tasks that MUST get done...
The Sew Along posts and stories do not write themselves... neither do the patterns.
I have just one pattern left to write and I have been putting it off because... well, there are just a lot of little pieces to it and I really have not been in the mood... Piecing is much more fun than writing... BUT I MUST GET IT DONE. Quit procrastinating Melva! So I am putting it out there...
❧ Write the last Kansas City Star quilt block pattern.
I probably should clean house... and I hope that we can sneak away to the mountains before all of the aspen leaves drop. Wasn't it just a few weeks ago I was feeling really ambitious???
I think I have asked this before, but...
What do you do to get motivated to tackle a task that you have put off long enough?
Leave a comment... I love to hear from you!
Want to help me stay distracted? Search your archives for some quilts that you completed during October of any year prior to 2020 and link up photos or blog posts in my Throwback Thursday Linky Party. Show me some eye candy and let's celebrate some fantastic finishes from years gone by.
Friday, October 2, 2020
We have turned another page on our calendars to yet another month and somehow we have arrived in October!
Welcome to the October Throwback Linky Party!
|Magical Harry Potter Reversible Quilt|
This well loved quilt was in need of some major repairs...
|Major Quilt Repair|
that features vintage Kansas City Star quilt blocks!
Thursday, October 1, 2020
If you happen to be interested, like I was, here is the link to Klaus' entire story. The picture of Klaus reveals that he was quite proud of his collection as well as his efforts of keeping the story of his parents and many others fleeing their homeland for safety.
A photo from Walter with a young Klaus... Sorquinces - Walter Hesselbarth was the manager of the Count's Sorquitten (Polish: Sorkwity). He had accepted the post on the condition "that I get a free hand", as he had explained to the then owner - Baron Bernhard von Paleske. “The estate had around 5000 hectares of usable agricultural area,” recalls Klaus Hesselbarth. The village of Sorquitten was founded in 1379. The estate was a former fiefdom of the Teutonic Order and changed hands several times over the centuries. Today's castle is located in the former Sensburg district on a headland between two lakes in a landscape park that is now a natural monument. In the course of time seven outworks belonged to the estate. In the Sorquitter Gutsforst with particularly dense pine and spruce stands, there was a good population of game. Sorquitten was famous for its deer hunts. After the war, the castle was used as a family vacation home for the “Ursus” tractor works under Polish sovereignty. Later it was a castle hotel that has since closed again. –
It is an easy block that should come together quickly for you... four Square in a square blocks and some strip piecing and you will find yourself ready to link up for an opportunity to win a free fat-quarter! Don't forget to tag me in your photos - instagram, @MelvaLovesScraps and use the hashtag #piecesfromthepastsewalong or share over on my facebook page, Melva Loves Scraps.
Monday, September 28, 2020
I have been blogging for seven years and it has been a learning curve for sure, and as technology changes and adjusts the social media platforms do the same and the learning curve is continually changing.
Once upon a time, blogs were all the rage. Readers followed closely, the audience was vast and then social media stepped onto the stage and bloggers had to adjust. Facebook and Instagram and Pinterest stole a bit of the spotlight and have become a form of micro-blogging offering a snap-shot or advertisement for what might be on the blog - the place where you can get "the rest of the story."
To support others and "share" an audience of readers link ups or linky-parties act as a sort of "central hub". One blog can direct you to many other projects, tutorials and inspiration in abundance.
Here is my current list of linky parties that I have been participating in for a while... these are just a few of the parties I have found... I am sure there are many more. If you host one, and would like to have it added to the list, leave a comment. I'll be more than happy to add it. If you participate in other parties that are not on this list... leave a comment. Again, I'll be happy to add to the list.
|BOMS Away at|
|BOMs Away at|
|Sunday Stash at|
|Monday Making at|
|Design Wall Monday at|
|Colour & Inspiration at|
|To Do Tuesday at|
|Mid-week Makers at|
|Wednesday Wait Loss at|
|Put Your Foot Down at|
|Creative Compulsions at Bijou Bead Boutique|
|Brag About Your Beauties at From Bolt to Beauty|
|UFO Busting at|
|Throwback Thursday party at |
Melva Loves Scraps
And just recently, I have started a Throwback Party. We celebrate and share each quilt finish as they are completed with pride... and then the quilt is gifted or donated, or tossed on the bed or couch and loved on...