Thursday, February 28, 2019

Quilter's Widower - No Guilt:: Go Create

I recently saw this shared in a quilting group on fb and thought I would pass on a chuckle to you...

So your wife is a quilter. That doesn't seem so bad, does it? It's a nice quiet hobby, conjuring up images of our sturdy pioneer mothers, keeping their families warm and creating beauty out of old shirts and printed feedbags. You think of plump grannies in rocking chairs, piecing a Log Cabin block by firelight, cat asleep at her feet. An idyllic picture, right?

You're living in a dream world, buddy. They buy their fabric whole now, in yardage and "fat quarters" (whatever they are). They cut this perfectly good cloth into smaller pieces, and then painstakingly, by hand, sew them back together. This process calls into question all the advances of the industrial revolution.

Quilting generates a blizzard of debris. Fabric scraps and batting clog and burn out your vacuum cleaner. (Hint: don't go barefoot. Your feet were never meant to be pincushions). The cat frequently swallows a length of discarded thread. Soon, one of two things will happen; you won't like either of them.

This is not the end of your problems. There are frequent expensive trips to the fabric store, and even more expensive quilt shows in faraway cities. There are bees, which are little groups of quilters who get together occasionally to complain about their husbands and children. These bees may meet in church basements, but occasionally they come to your house and take over the dining room table. Your presence in the next room won't intimidate them.

Quilting also tends to take up more and more of the house. Sure, your wife might decide at some point that she has enough fabric. I've never seen this myself, but it could happen. More likely, your home will become a candidate for that TV show where some poor fellow's dead body is found under a collapsed pile of old newspapers. In your case, it will be a tower of yardage and color-matched prints.

As far as I know, there is no twelve-step program for quilters, but you may avoid codependency by following these tips:

1. Set up a space outside the living area for the quilting equipment and fabric storage. I have refinished the basement, and we are moving everything down there. Other husbands have constructed pole barns, rented industrial space, or moved to another city under an assumed name. 

2. Have your wife make a small business out of her hobby. Internet sales can be lucrative. They might even partially make up for the enormous sums she spends. Very important: Do not participate in the business yourself. First thing you know, you'll be maintaining complicated machinery, acting as an errand boy, and dealing with the post office. You have better things to do. 

3. Don't be tempted to accompany your wife to quilt shows, thinking that time together will add spark to your relationship. You won't see her all day. You'll wander around aimlessly among the booths, finding nothing remotely interesting. Sure, you could meet other lost husbands, and find camaraderie in the nearest bar. Usually, though, a woman in a quilted vest will mistake you for a fabric vendor. She will try to hustle you for free samples. 

4. Don't try to distract your wife with other activities, such as gardening, cooking or housework. Though she may have done these things in the past, that's all over now. Quilting is her life. Accept your fate. Learn to cook and run the vacuum. Get a hobby of your own. You could join a softball team-slow-pitch, preferably-or learn simple carpentry skills. Then build a pole barn and move into it yourself. 

Finally, remember you are not alone. There are plenty of other quilt-widowers out there.

Submitted by Patrick Cook, the husband of Valorie Cook from Grand Rapids, MI

I don't know what the big deal is.  I mean women have been left alone all during sport seasons, football, basketball, baseball... and hunting season that seems to last forever!  I have been to my fair share of trade shows for Dave and He certainly is not afraid to go to a quilt show with me. 

That being said...  

Here's another freezer meal recipe so that you can have a No Guilt::Go Quilt day!  I love the fact that the spaghetti squash cooks in the crockpot at the same time as the marinara sauce!

Enjoy!  I'll be in my studio playing in the woods as I make pine cones and trees for a pair of table toppers and a table runner...

Do you have a Quilter's Widower in your house?  Or did you take up quilting because you were a hunting or football widow?  

Leave a comment!  I'd love to hear your thoughts...
Quilt Happy!

Melva Loves Scraps - Home of the Quilters Through The Generations series

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

The Adventure Quilt - Great Divide

Block #4 of the Road Trip Quilt - Adventure Quilt QAL from Kate Colleran and Tammy Silvers  - is representative of the Continental Divide.  

I am a Colorado native I have known of this landmark for most of my life.  I had the opportunity to travel the passes that traverse the  great divide as well as ski some of the peaks that are part of the divide numerous times.  Beautiful views, but a treacherous trip getting to them.

But the space between the peaks are also a challenge... a valley, or a canyon... a chasm.  Figuring out how to get to the other side can prove to be a a difficult task.  Down through the valley can be an exhausting and daunting time...  Psalm 23 covers that...

Even though I walk
    through the darkest valley,

I will fear no evil,

    for you are with me;

your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

It was 20 years ago that I had a dream while participating in a weekend of Spiritual growth.  

I grew up attending church and participating in youth group and as a young mother became involved in the Women's Fellowship group and Bible studies. I knew that God loved me... it's the core of the lessons taught in Sunday School and I had heard it all my life.  I knew of God... But the question was "did I know God?"  He knows the number of hairs on my head... but do I know Him?

In my dream I was running because something was after me...  it was a giant boulder - call to mind the boulders that Wily E Coyote ended up under when his plot to catch The Roadrunner failed.

I came to the edge of a canyon... short of breath and no where to go... a giant rolling rock approaching.  I call out for help.  I hear "jump".  It wasn't shouted, rather simply spoken to me, calmly, gently... "jump".

I hesitated but the giant rock was getting ever so close.  Faced with the choice to jump or be run over, I finally take the step off of the edge... and I begin to fall - with a sassy attitude of "see! I am going to..." and then a giant, gentle hand comes up under me just as I am seeing the bottom of the chasm.  And I feel as light as a feather.  

My faith in God saved me in that dream... as it has many times since then. Not necessarily life and death situations, but the comfort of trusting God and leaving worry behind had much the same effect...  

I have learned that to better appreciate the mountain top views you have to spend a little time in the valley.  After all, it is in the valley that most of the growth occurs.  

The lessons I have learned by my time spent in valleys have been great.  Cast your cares... Stand in the truth of the Lord and He will fight for you... He has great plans...   

Life is a journey.  Take time to enjoy the journey... not just the destination!

If you could go back in time to give your younger self some advice, what would you tell yourself?

Leave a comment... I love to hear from my readers.  I like to reply via a private email whenever possible, rather than here on the blog.  The comments you leave are not ignored.  If you are a no-reply reader and you would like to hear from me, be sure to leave your email address.

Keep Calm and Quilt On,

Melva Loves Scraps - Home of the Quilters Through The Generations series

Linking with:

BOMs Away at What A Hoot Quilts
Moving It Forward Monday at Em's Scrapbag
Linky Tuesday at Freemotion by the River
Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter
Midweek Makers at Quilt Fabrication
WIP Wednesday at Esther's Quilt Blog

Thursday, February 21, 2019

A Time For All Season - A Piece of My Hearts

The February blocks are from Carol at Just Let Me Quilt and are really cute and so appropriate for the month of February... the month of love.

Ecclesiastes 3 has always been a favorite scripture of mine... 

There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:

     a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
     a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build,
     a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
     a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
     a time to search and a time to give up,
    a time to keep and a time to throw away,
     a time to tear and a time to mend,
    a time to be silent and a time to speak,
     a time to love and a time to hate,

    a time for war and a time for peace.

She and the other designers for this BOM have been kind enough to offer two blocks a month, one pieced and one that involves applique.  Maybe I whined a little to loudly last year about the amount of appliqued blocks... Sorry!  But you may also recall... I did eventually stop whining because the blocks in the It's A "Wild" Life BOM were just so darn cute!  

I love those little hearts!  They went together quickly and reminded me of my own Pieces of My Heart block that was part of Volume 8 in 100 Blocks published by QuiltMaker Magazine... 

...My Pieces of My Heart block also inspired the teeny-tiny quilt featured in my version of the Quilter's Laundry Day from two years ago.

I have stated before that I have a difficult time following directions for multiple anything!  And rather than make two pieced blocks wholly following the pattern's instructions I considered come other options...

Like doing string pieced like in the Laundry Day mini... 

or jumbled up with half hearts like this one that I included in my Bitty Block Quilt...

In the end, I decided that using some cute heart prints would fun too...

I especially like the conversation hearts... Though Valentines Day has passed, a local baker had been sharing some of her special treats she had available for purchase for your sweetheart...  This collection of cookies cracked me up!  Ok, so maybe these don't really send a message of love... They may have been more appropriate for my HS BF that had declared his love for me... you can catch up with the whole story over on my color challenge post

If you were having conversation hearts custom made, what sort of theme or sayings would you request?

Leave a comment... I'd love to hear from you!

Sew Sweet!

Melva Loves Scraps - Home of the Quilters Through The Generations series

Linking with:

Needle & Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation
Can I get a Whoop Whoop at Confessions of a Fabric Addict
TGIFF at Alycia Quilts
Finished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts
BOMs Away at What a Hoot Quilts
UFO Busting at Tish's Adventures in Wonderland

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Show Me Your Wings Blog Hop & Give Away

Welcome to Melva Loves Scraps and the Show Me Your Wings blog hop hosted by Carol at Just Let Me Quilt.  If this happens to be your first time visiting, welcome!  I hope that you will take a few minutes to look around my blog.  You can get a peek into my studio, learn a little more about what makes me tick, as well as check out my Gallery and the Quilters Through The Generations stories I have featured by following the links on the high-lighted words or by clicking on the tabs at the top of the page.

Details for the give away and the full list of hop participants will be at the end of this post. 

I really didn't think that coming up with a quilt for this hop would prove to be so challenging!  My first idea was a Birds In The Air quilt... or something with flying geese units.

I asked my fb followers what came to mind when they heard "Show Me Your Wings"... Responses included angels, butterflies, "Take off and fly" referring to children growing up and fleeing the nest, as it is intended, and "I believe I can fly".

I considered angels... I also considered butterflies... and normally I would have been excited about the butterflies.  But I kept landing back at Flying Geese.  Jumbo size, big block size

I pulled a few patterns. 

This one was a real possibility... I have made it a few times before as baby quilts.  it is always a fun one to make...

 I also considered the Dutchman's Puzzle with jumbo sized blocks...

It would make a nice sized baby quilt...

I pulled fabric that would work with either of these quilts.  While definitely not a baby print, the brightly colored lizards on a green leafy background that had been in my stash for a few years would be a fun quilt for a baby boy... I had located some coordinating solids to go along with them.

And then I started looking through the Civil War Quilt book that I bought when I made a quilt to commemorate our vacation to Gettysburg and the DC area in 2005.  Each block has a diary entry that highlights the events of the day or letters or new received.  

That was when I found Confusion and Turmoil!  As I reflect, it seemed  rather ironic that I use this block pattern since I had been completely undecided about what sort of quilt I make...  LOL

So, a few details... Each flying geese unit is 6 inches by 12 inches with an over all finished size of 39 inches square.

With this quilt completed and a few days remaining before the publish date for this hop, I started playing with a few angel ideas that I had... 

Because February plays host to Valentines Day and all things hearts... I wanted to make an angel with hearts.  

I may have used a similar project (from construction paper) as a Girl Scout leader or gotten the idea from some school project that one of the girls brought home from elementary school, or maybe a Christmas ornament...   

It doesn't really matter... I have learned that when an idea comes to me in the middle of the night, I must follow the inspiration...  

I had the opportunity to practice my free-motion quilting with the writing of the scripture from Hebrews 2:2 in the background.  

My other idea was to use prairie points as angel wings, a triangle as the body and a snowball block as the head.

<<<  The final result...  a cute little mug rug! 

When I first looked at it, it reminded me of some paintings by DeGrazia at the chapel in Arizona.  

I had a painting in my childhood bedroom that was done by my Grandma Teegarden with a similar feel and look of this one...

Give away time!  This sweet little angel with Prairie Point Wings is the prize.  Leave a comment before February 22nd letting me know...

 which one of my winged quilt projects is your favorite?

The Flying Geese baby quilt, the Angel of Hearts or the Prairie Point Angel?

Be sure to leave your email address with your comment if you are a no-reply blogger... It would be terrible if you were selected as the winner and I had no way of contacting you!

Quilt Happy!


Be sure to visit all of the other quilters that are participating!

Saturday, February 16, 2019

The Adventure Quilt - Blooms

Block three of the Adventure Quilt-Along - Road Trip Quilt, hosted by Kate & Tammy is all about blooms.  As Kate said...

"These Blooms blocks represent the sun that (hopefully) shines down on your journey and the flowers and plants you see as you travel on your Road Trip."

That is precisely what came to my mind when I saw the patterns!  

The sun and flowers.  

The Roadside Bloom made me think of the Indian Blanket flowers that grow along highways in New Mexico.  After dropping off our daughter to Girl Scout camp (about 15 years ago!) near Angel Fire, NM I made my husband stop along the road to "rescue" a few of the plants...  After all, the state may have come along at any moment to mow along the side of the road!

The tropical bloom block and the sun block >>> reminded me of a spring break trip to Tucson to visit my grandparents.  The whole family went - my parents, brother and my boyfriend (who went on to become my husband), who had never been to Arizona.

It was NOT the typical college spring break, but we had a great time!

Our college's baseball team was scheduled to scrimmage against the University of Arizona and we were able to be there to root them on.  We were ready to soak up some warmth and sunshine!

We visited Reid Park Zoo, Old Tucson, Saguaro National Park...  We must have worn them out!  With outings planned every day!  

Grandma and Grandpa had mentioned that the poppies were supposed to be in full bloom at Picacho Peak State Park.  We packed a lunch for everyone and headed out.  When we arrived we were in wonder of where the poppies were...

After wandering around on a few trails I remember saying... do you think these little tiny flowers we have been walking on are the poppies???

Turns out... yes, indeed, there they were!

We were all thinking poppies... big. red.  You know... Poppies!

And so fitting for the small poppies we saw at Picacho Peak State Park, this block is only 6", rather than 12 inches like the sun and roadside bloom blocks.

You still have time to grab the pattern for free - through Tuesday, February 18th (I think...)!

Did you ever take a spring break trip?  

Leave a comment telling me where you went and what you did... I love to hear from my readers. 

Quilt Happy!

Melva Loves Scraps - Home of the Quilters Through The Generations series

Linking with:

BOMs Away at What A Hoot Quilts
Finished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts
TGIFF with Lisa at Port Hope
Can I get A Whoop Whoop at Confessions of a Fabric Addict
UFO Busting at Tish's Adventures in Wonderland

Thursday, February 14, 2019

2019 Color Challenge - Carnations - Pink

The February Color Challenge color is Pink.  It was one of my favorite colors as a kid.  When I was allowed to choose a color for my bedroom I chose pink!  What were my parents thinking when I asked for pink... and not a light pink... something subtle... like the carnations shown in the photo to the right. >>>

They let me get bubble gum pink!

I was probably about age 9 or 10... And the room remained that way until my parents sold the house when I was in my 30s!

It was a little reminiscent of the light pink in my block. Oh my... 

As I watched a story on the CBS Sunday Morning show about singing telegrams I recalled how student council, or maybe it was show choir, would hold a fundraising event on Valentines Day where students could order a singing telegram, along with a box of chocolates or a flowers, to a person in a specific class period.  

It was a way to "declare your love" for someone or just embarrass the tar out of them.  I don't ever recall being on the receiving end of one of these singing telegrams.  I was, however, embarrassed beyond  belief when my boy friend who attended HS in a neighboring town publicly declared his love for my by having a Valentine message printed in the town paper.  **Ugh** 

I mean, I liked the guy, and may have been on the verge of admitting some form of teenage love for him.  His message of love was supposed to be somewhat discreet... he claimed...  Supposedly, my name was not to be printed in full, nor his name... only initials.  He apologized profusely.  I must have forgiven him... we continued dating for a few more months.  He was going to go off to college in Denver and I would still be in HS.  

It was an awkward situation... I became painfully aware that he was much more in love with me and his public proclamation of love for me magnified the fact that I was not able to reciprocate the feelings.  I eventually ended the relationship... after Prom.  After all, a girl had to have a date to attend Prom and it was the social event of the year!

(Edit... Actually I remember getting this picture and being quite excited that we looked "so cute" together.  But somewhere between prom and his graduation, I wasn't comfortable knowing he had stronger feelings for me, therefore, I ended it.)

It is obvious to me now that he was never meant to be the love of my life.  Through that young relationship (and a few others) I was able to get a glimpse into what love really is and I definitely found that with Dave!

For better or worse... In sickness or in health... Until death do we part.  Thirty-three years and counting!

Have you ever been on the receiving end of a singing telegram???

Leave a comment - I love to hear from my readers...

Happy Valentines Day!

Melva Loves Scraps - Home of the Quilters Through The Generations series

Linking with:

BOMs Away at What A Hoot Quilts
Finished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts
TGIFF with Lisa at Port Hope
Can I get A Whoop Whoop at Confessions of a Fabric Addict
UFO Busting at Tish's Adventures in Wonderland

2019 Color Challenge at Patterns by Jen