Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Small Things Done

My To-Do list didn't see as much get done as I had hoped, but you cannot say that I didn't try...

❧ I need to get borders on the Memory quilt.  

This could get a 1/2 check mark since I have fabric for the final border, backing and binding on order (and fingers crossed) it will be here in time for me to get this quilt done before the close of the month since it was my One Month Goal that I linked up at Elm Street Quilts

 Dresden/Sunbonnet Sue top quilted for my customer.  

I started with great ideas and plans... and then I discovered that the prepared backing that my client sent was too small.  A quick assessment of the situation allowed for a fast answer...  

Use the fabric that she had intended for the binding to make the backing large enough and use some grey dotted fabric left from another quilt that she had sent for the binding.  

That little derailment set me off course and, honestly, Ummmmmmm....  the only excuse I have is that I'm still unsure of how to quilt it.

This derailing did allow for me to get most of the other items on my list done.

   Prep Big Horn Sheep and Soaring Bird blocks for our camping journal quilt.

        The soaring bird block kit is in my sewing bag and ready to go whenever we are.  The Big Horn Sheep pattern has been printed out and fabric selected and in my sewing bag as well so that the pieces and fabric can be prepped on the road.

Something fun!  

On Saturday I joined the Saturday Sew-in over at the Inquiring Quilter and had intentions of continuing the quilting of the Cake Walk Quilt.  It was mid-morning that I found I had made several excuses of why I wasn't in my studio...

That was when I remembered that I wanted to do something FUN!  I printed out my bear pattern from Fiona Sandwich and began the process of making a block to mark off one of her Summer Camp Sewing Challenge items... Make a block using unusual colors.

I sat down in the recliner and hand-stitched up this little gal in purple as I watched shows on Netflix ~ something I haven't done for several weeks!  I had told myself that when this bear was done then I would go quilt... That was a big ol' NOPE!  Instead I made up two more blocks - these were machine pieced.  

I was remembering the trapper's blankets at Bent's Fort Trading Post when ever I would visit the site as a kid and thought I would use the stripes pattern to replicate such a blanket. 

Release Block #6 of the Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail Sew Along.  This block is from Kathie Laposata, one of the sew along participants.  

I love her adjustment to the center patch to make it a 3-color block.

Marion Russell tells tales of learning from the Sisters at the Academy, what they taught and how they often called her and her brother "little heretics".  She shares her memories of how a man in jail captured her attention by singing and told her of his own daughter at home and how he missed her so... 

Follow the link above to find  the rest of the story, the free pattern... and get a recipe for some Molasses Cookies.

Well... it would appear that I have a few items that are obviously going to be on my To-do list for the coming week.

❧ The Memory quilt.  Once the fabric arrives this one will have my full attention!  I already know that I am going to use a super-sized Baptist Fan quilting design, like I used on my Pieces from the Past Quilt.

❧ Cake Walk quilt...

You know where you can find me!

If you were to choose a "Fun!" quilty project to do what would it be?

Leave a comment...  I love to hear from all of you!

Stay calm and keep quilting,


 Linking with:

To Do Tuesday at Chris Knits & Sews
Mid-week Makers at Quilt Fabrication
Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter
Stitch Sew & Show at Life in the Scrap Patch
Put Your Foot Down at For the Love of Geese
Needle & Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation
Can I Get A Whoop Whoop at Confessions of a Fabric Addict
Off The Wall Friday with Nina Marie
Brag About Your Beauties at From Bolt to Beauty
Peacock Party at Wendy’s Quilts and More
Friday Foto Fun at Powered by Quilting
Finished or Not Friday at Alycia Quilts
Scrap Happy Saturday at Super Scrappy
UFO Busting at Tish’s Wonderland
Oh Scrap! at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework
Sunday Stash at QuiltPaintCreate
Patchwork & Quilts at The Quilting Patch

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail - Shoo Fly


In the words of Marian Russell...

Will and I soon fitted into the life at Albuquerque.  We played with the Mexican children.  We built make-believe forts with them and shot many an arrow at imaginary Indians.  The trail over which we had come held a fascination for us.  We played along it as far as mother would let us.  Sometimes we would find a dry land terrapin.  They loved to walk slowly along the trail that led westward.  We wondered if they had come all the way from Fort Leavenworth.  When we touched them they drew their heads back in their shells.  We sometimes stood barefooted upon them.

Our adobe house stood with its back to the street, or road I suppose you would call it.  Neither door nor window graced that long side.  One night when the scouts were all gone on reconnoitering expeditions and we were alone, Mother became frightened.  She awoke in the night to hear an oft-repeated and unusual noise.  It sounded like a pack rat working.  Mother arose and lighted a candle.  The noise stopped in a moment.  She looked around and seeing nothing amiss, went back to bed again, only to have the queer noise start over again.  This time she arose in the darkness and walking softly discovered the noise came from where a big trunk was sitting against that windowless wall.  Again she lighted a candle.  She pulled the trunk forward and discovered a yawning black hole staring at her.  Someone outside had been digging through the adobe wall seeking entrance.  The hole was not large enough to permit a man's body.  It was lucky mother had awakened.  She was frightened but courageous.  She nailed the front door and hung her silver teaspoons tied together to the latch string.  They were to be the alarm if the marauders sought entrance at the door.  She loaded a rifle and sat with it on her lap by the hole in the wall until morning.  Next morning we found in the great heap of soft earth they had dug and piled outside by the opening some footprints.  They were not the footprints of Indian.  We found tracks of a man, a large man with shoes, a barefooted man and a burro.  Who were they?  Why were they burrowing through the walls of a little adobe house?  Mother had no money, nothing of value.  We never found out who the intruders were, but mother was always fearful when our boarders were all gone at once.

I think that after mother's rather frightening experience in Albuquerque she was always a wee bit afraid.  When one of her boarders suggested that she move to Santa Fe where he was soon to be stationed, she gladly consented.  In the spring of 1854, we moved to Santa Fe and mother leased a large adobe house on the central Plaza.  That adobe house, our first home in Santa Fe was torn down later and the present New Mexico Art Museum erected in its place.  We soon had our house filled with military boarders.  They paid at the princely rate of $45.00 per month.

The Mexicans all over the territory seemed to worship Father Lamy.  His spirituality and devout faith controlled that mass of seething humanity that could, perhaps, have been controlled in no other way.  At dawn when the bell rang for early mass we would see him come to stand on the steps of the Cathedral.  From crooked alleys and narrow streets his people came.  Shambling furtive-eyed men and black-shawled women came, and he raised his hands and blessed them.  His love-inspired prayers laid hold of their simple hearts and held them at the altar of his church.  The lovely church altar meant much to the Mexicans and converted Indians - worship and adoration and mystery.

It was the year 1852 that Bishop Lamy induced six Loretta nuns to leave the mother convent in Kentucky and to establish a school for girls in illiterate Santa Fe.  The story of their pilgrimage is a story of heartache and pain.  One died of cholera and was buried in Independence.  Another became sick and had to return.

The school that the sisters established enrolled 100 girls that first year; 95 little Mexican girls and five American ones.  Of this enrollment 99 were Catholic.  The sisters called me rebukingly, albeit lovingly, "their little heretic."  Many were the stories they told me of the 99 who safely lay in the shelter of the fold.

Our uniforms at the Academy were rather varied.  For every day we wore dark purplish ones, rather long and gathered tightly to a high-waisted belt.  On feast days we had better grade black ones, and on holidays we blossomed out in rosy pink.  All were made alike, simply, ankle length, rather full and high waisted.  Even today I can see us, 100 strong, in long, high-waisted dresses. 

I have never forgotten how the sisters tried to instill into our little hearts a little bit of culture, and the hard time they had so doing.  They planned our lessons so that we might learn poise and self reliance along with readin', writin' and 'rithmetic.  Textbooks were sometimes laid aside and our lessons went on with marvelous ease and quietness.  Each day we were supposed to do something for others, to help others.  it was there that I learned how much easier it is to act than to think.  Contemplation defied me.  Unholy thoughts came pressing up, not to be denied at the hour of contemplation.  Shape after shape, grotesque and ugly, forced themselves into my child's mind.  If you think contemplation is easy, just try it.

We were taught in the Academy to do fine bead and needle work.  The material for Bishop Lamy's robes was brought all the way from Leavenworth by wagon train.  The sisters made the robes by hand.  Always they saved the little left-over fragments for use in the sewing classes.  Sometimes we made pin cushions and needle books out of them.  I made in those classes a very handsome needle book out of a fragment of Father's robe.  I marvel at the little even stitches my seven year old fingers did make.  I have given the little souvenir of school days to a grand-daughter who wears today the black robes of a Benedictine sister.  It rests today, the little souvenir, in a Catholic museum.

Sometimes, while we sewed or did our Indian bead work the sisters would tell us stories.  I think that the stories they told us were the sweetest and best ever told to the little girls and boys.  One story they told us was of the little Lord Jesus and a scarlet cactus apple.

Behind the church of San Miguel was the boy's school that Will attended.  He, too, was a "little heretic."  Many a time was he sent home by Father Lamy in disgrace for lack of reverence or respect to the Catholic creed.  While this school was across the river from the girl's Academy, it was not so far away that the boys did not come at recess and climb upon the adobe wall and call to the little girls across the river.  This was against the rules, but boys and girls have defied such rules all their lives.  In those days Will, who loved girls, said that he hated Father Lamy's school and it was not until later years that the seed Father Lamy had planted in his wayward heart took root and bore fruit.  It never did in mine.  I shall die a "little heretic."

Fronting Santa Fe's Central Plaza on the north was the Governor's Palace, a one story adobe structure surrounding an inner court.  The Governor's Palace looked as if it might have been transplanted from medieval ages.  It had been the residence of territorial governors for years.  One end strongly barred and bolted was used for a jail.  One evening a political prisoner who was being held there called to me as I passed on my way home from school.  He sat just inside the barred doorway, an unlighted cigarette in his hand.  Perhaps he was lonesome and wanted to talk to someone so badly that even a child would do.  I lingered a moment as he tried to entertain me.  He sang, I remember, "Shoo fly, don't bother I," and when I laughed at him he took out his great silver watch to show me.  He told me he had a little girl at home waiting for him.  He said that her braids were as long as mine but that hers were yellow, like gold.  When he talked of his daughter his blue eyes looked troubled.  His voice soft and gentle.

I went home to tell mother; perhaps she would give me a cookie to take back to my friend, the prisoner.  She only said to wait until morning.  

The Shoo Fly block pattern is available in my Payhip store.  It is another beginner friendly block that perhaps young Marion may have learned to sew while under the educational training of those sisters at the Academy.  

I wonder, too, what sort of cookies would Eliza have had on hand for Marion to take to "her prisoner?"  Perhaps some Molasses cookies?  Oatmeal Raisin?  Ginger Snap?  Ginger Snaps may have been a "staple" for the trail, much like hardtack.  Here's a yummy Molasses Cookie Recipe.  These were among some of my Grandpa T's favorite cookies...  slightly sweet and chewy.  Grandpa knew Marion - his sister, Viola, was married to one of Marion's sons (Richard).  

Molasses Cookies

4 cup enriched flour (sifted)
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp cloves
1 cup shortening
1 1/2 cup Original Molasses
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Sift together first six ingredients.

Melt shortening in saucepan large enough for mixing cookies. Stir in molasses and sugar. Cool. 

Beat in egg. Gradually add flour mixture. Beat about 20 strokes.  Shape into balls (golf-ball size). Place on greased baking sheet.  Bake 15 minutes or until cookies have lightly browned. Store in covered stone jar.

What's your favorite cookie? 

 Leave a comment... you know I love it when you "stop by for a visit."

P.S.  Marion's story of "her prisoner" has a very tragic ending.  This poor girl certainly had some life experiences!

It (morning) was too late then to take cookies, for during the night, someone came softly close to the bars and shot my prisoner through the heart!  It must have happened not long after darkness had fallen, for he still sat in his chair by the door, the unlighted cigarette on the floor by the tips of his fingers.  I was the one to find him when I came bearing gifts in the morning.  His head was sunken on his chest.  I could not see his face, but I saw the clotted blood on his shirt front.  We were told that often happened to political prisoners.  He was killed, they said to prevent his betrayal of State secrets.  We never knew the reason, but I have thought often of the child with the yellow hair who waited for the return of her father.  The Old Governor's Palace at Santa Fe holds many age-old secrets.

A footnote in the book states "It is possible that the prisoner was murdered by members of his own underground group to prevent his being forced to reveal the names of other members, places of rendezvous and intentions.  Secret groups were strong and both civil and military officials were forced to maintain constant vigilance."

Get your pattern, make your block and then share it!  Don't forget to use the hashtags #PiecesoftheSantaFeTrail #PiecesoftheTrail #PiecesoftheTrailSewAlong and tag me on instagram @MelvaLovesScraps or share to my fb page Melva Loves Scraps.  
Be sure to come back and link up your block for a chance to win a fat quarter too!

Linking with:

Put Your Foot Down at For the Love of Geese
Needle & Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation
Can I Get A Whoop Whoop at Confessions of a Fabric Addict
Off The Wall Friday with Nina Marie
Brag About Your Beauties at From Bolt to Beauty
Peacock Party at Wendy’s Quilts and More
Friday Foto Fun at Powered by Quilting
Finished or Not Friday at Alycia Quilts
BOMs Away at What A Hoot Quilts
TGIFFridays at Devoted Quilter
Scrap Happy Saturday at Super Scrappy
UFO Busting at Tish’s Wonderland
Oh Scrap! at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework
Sunday Stash at QuiltPaintCreate
Patchwork & Quilts at The Quilting Patch
Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt
Design Wall Monday at Small Quilts and Doll Quilts

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Tired Tuesday

It's Tuesday and our vacation time is over.  As so many others have stated... "I need a vacation to recover from our vacation!"

Early morning visitors to our camper

The Nolan Family Camp Weekend was filled with so much joy, love, laughter, crafts, activities and food... and only one small melt-down from one of the little ones.  

In the midst of the chaos on the picnic table

Sweet Hanna was a little fussy on day 2, but there were enough adults around that we took turns soothing, walking and talking to her.  She really was happiest when she was around the group.

She has to be the most loved and touched sibling ever!  Every time one of the kids passed by her, sleeping or awake, they had to touch her, hold her hand, kiss her, pet her head or show some sort of affection.  And most of the time she was tolerant of them.

With Gramma & Gramma Carol
Arts & Crafts

But as I turn my attention to the coming week and what I need to accomplish, I remind myself, it will all get done when it gets done.

❧ I need to get borders on the Memory quilt...  
I will use the blue as a narrow border and I need to find fabric for the final border and a backing.

Since it will likely take a few days to get the fabric to finish this one...

❧  I will get this this Dresden/Sunbonnet Sue top quilted for my customer...

For some reason this quilt reminds me of a cake walk!  It may be because all of the Sues are facing the same direction, and the Dresden plates are the cakes...

I remember a cake walk from my elementary school memories.  I think it was a fundraiser for something... it may have simply been a 4-H event... but the excitement among the girls of making the cakes and what kind of cake and frosting was the main talk amongst all of us for the week before the event.

Do you have memories of a cake walk?

Any suggestions for the quilting of this Cake Walk Quilt?

Leave a comment... I'd love to hear your memories and suggestions!

Among other things on my to-do list for the week...

❧  Prep Big Horn Sheep and Soaring Bird blocks for our camping journal quilt.

❧  Something fun!  Maybe an improv hand-sewn hello mug rug

❧  Release Block #6 of the Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail Sew Along

Quilty Blessings!


Linking with:

Design Wall Monday at Small Quilts and Doll Quilts
To Do Tuesday at Chris Knits & Sews
Mid-week Makers at Quilt Fabrication
Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter
Stitch Sew & Show at Life in the Scrap Patch

Friday, July 16, 2021

Quick Check-in

Just a quick check-in between our trips...

We were settled into our campsite in time for lunch and it was was so pleasant.

The river was nearby and we had shade over the picnic table area so after a quick and easy lunch of sandwiches, fruit and chips we plopped ourselves down in our chairs and began the decompression stage.

In the short time that we were "unplugged" I completed several postcard blocks for our Camping Journal Quilt and I was able to check off numerous items from the Summer Camp Sewing Log.

The Purple Mountains Majesty completed my color that I've not yet used, and the big dipper fulfilled the "night sky" challenge.

Those little pieces for the stars were a bugger to work with!  But worth every minute...

The fish that got away...  You may remember the story from our trip in June.  

I used a piece of fabric that has pine trees and sky on it to achieve the light and dark coloring of the water.  I even got a bit of a water splash!

By the way, Dave now has a fishing net to assist in retrieving the fish from the water.  No more lost fish or lures. 😉

The question of whether or not sewing at a National Monument or in a National Forest qualified for sewing in a National Park was posed and the answer was that it was indeed acceptable.  Mark that one off of the challenge list!

I have made several campfire blocks in the past few years, but this is by far the best fabric I have found for it!  This fabric was leftover from a memory quilt that I made for a high school graduate last summer.  Woohoo!

And the last one... sew outside.  Easy peasy... and it was easy to be organized with my new sewing bag and magnetic sheet attached to the back of a small cutting mat.  My scissors didn't slide all over and end up in between my legs or under me and the needle stayed put and easily accessible!  

I need to find some good, strong magnets to include in the bag to hold a few pattern pieces in place and ready to grab when needed.

We enjoyed several long walks in the forest.  

The area has had fire mitigation so it is not overgrown and hard to walk in...

The sunlight in this picture is inspiration for another postcard block...

We went for a drive on day two... We were headed for the Wild Rivers National Monument Visitors Center.  It sounded like an interesting place... but it happened to be closed for the week.  

But I got lucky with snapping this shot of some crows flying overhead...

We referred to our map of interests and went in search of the D.H. Lawrence Ranch... we found it, but we also learned  that it is only open on Thursday's and Friday's... it was only Tuesday.   

We were soon back on the highway looking for the Rio Grand Gorge Bridge.  It is a 1,272-foot long span over the Rio Grand River.  At one of the deepest spots, the river is 656 feet below.  

The third time is a charm, right?  Here we are.  

It was worth the drive... though not as high as the Royal Gorge in Canon City, CO, still impressive.  Heights don't really bother either of us, but we had to giggle (to ourselves) about how nervous some were while walking across the bridge, or marvel at how calm some parents were in letting their young children walk along without holding their hands.  

On our way back to the campground we had a herd of bighorn sheep cross the road in front of us...  I was so excited!  There were several ewes and a few yearlings and some babies!

Upon our return we had some neighbors setting up in a nearby site.  They were a fun family to watch.  There was Grandpa and Grandma, Mom and four children, ranging in age from 17 to 5 ~ Carter, Addie, Danny and Julie.  Oh, and a 15 week old puppy ~ Tillie.  We never did catch Mom's name...  

They came for a visit a few times as the kids scoped out the river for the best fishing spots.  They were a lovely family from Oklahoma and we enjoyed the chats.

The puppy spotted a chipmunk that resided under a large rock... which interested Shelby and the oldest boy.  It was hilarious to see them all watching intently.  The little chippy finally snuck away, but Shelby continued to watch... not understanding why the puppy and boy lost interest.  LOL!

It was time to load up and head home before a big rain storm rolled in, but not without a walk around town and lunch at the brewery.

Time to re-pack and go to the cabin! Fun! Fun! Fun!  

We camped for two nights... can you guess what blocks might be added to the Camping Journal Quilt to represent this trip?

Leave a comment... I'd like to see your guesses.

Stay Pieceful!


Linking with:

Off The Wall Friday with Nina Marie
Brag About Your Beauties at From Bolt to Beauty
Peacock Party at Wendy’s Quilts and More
Friday Foto Fun at Powered by Quilting
Finished or Not Friday at Alycia Quilts
Oh Scrap! at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework
Sunday Stash at QuiltPaintCreate
Patchwork & Quilts at The Quilting Patch
Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt
Design Wall Monday at Small Quilts and Doll Quilts
Scrap Happy Saturday at Super Scrappy
UFO Busting at Tish’s Wonderland


Monday, July 12, 2021

Gone Camping

You won't hear or see much from me this week...

I am unplugged and will be (hopefully) sitting by a creek, watching the day pass by or enjoying a long walk and taking naps.

On Friday I I did this...

I didn't really have the time to make this travel sewing bag, but I did it anyway!

 Zippers and I are barely on an acquaintance basis and it took two tries to get it right. The first one was too short so I had to go to the store to find a longer one... it wasn't really much longer, but at least it separated, allowing the bag to open flat.

There are pockets galore and I used double stick tape to attach a large sheet magnet on the back of my small cutting mat to keep my scissors and needle handy, in addition to being able to use magnets to keep some of the pattern pieces readily available. And there is plenty of room to take a small bag full of fabric. 😃

I'll check in really quick sometime Thursday or Friday as we reset and prep for our Family Cabin Camp Weekend!

Leave a comment about what you are doing this week!

I look forward to hearing from you...


Linking with:

To Do Tuesday at Chris Knits & Sews
Mid-week Makers at Quilt Fabrication
Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter
Stitch Sew & Show at Life in the Scrap Patch
Put Your Foot Down at For the Love of Geese
Needle & Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation

Friday, July 9, 2021

Mid-Year Review

I have been saying it for weeks... How can the year be 1/2 gone???  They say that time flies when you're having fun.  So... I guess I have been having a great time because they days seem to be zipping by at warp speed.

None the less, it is time for a mid-year check up to see if I have managed to do anything on my Annual Planning Party list.  

✔  Wrap up the Pieces from the Past Sew Along.  Did you see the quilt parade?
And if you happen to be interested in any or all of these blocks they are still available at no cost.  You can find the patterns by following the highlighted link above to the sew along page and then selecting each story to find the block and its pattern.

✔  Using all that I have learned to date with the Pieces From the Past Sew Along, I launched the Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail Sew Along in April.  Following the same schedule as the previous sew along, I am publishing a new block every three weeks.  While my quilt has been finished for a few months, just recently I was able to take it to one of the local Santa Fe Trail Crossing sites.  

At this particular trail site they have a couple wagons... They had a regular passenger wagon, but they also had a freight wagon with a "pup" wagon in tow.  I chose to capture photos with the freight wagon since Marion's first journey on the Santa Fe Trail was with a driver of a freight wagon.  

If you haven't been following along, with each block I am sharing an excerpt of the book "Land of Enchantment" which is the book of Memoirs of Marion Sloan Russell.  You can get all of the details by following the highlighted link above.

Continue with our Camping Journal Quilt. I wonder what amazing adventures we have before us?  

Sadly, we did not get a spring trip. In fact, the camper was not even put on the truck until June!  We have enjoyed one trip with friends to a National Forest area but have a few more adventures planned in the coming weeks.

Rachel over at Fiona Sandwich is hosting a Summer Camp with a fun little check off list for various items, such as sewing near water, or sewing in a car and more.  I haven't gotten many blocks done, but it has been great fun seeing the creativity of all the participants.

As for my other goals... I have done nothing to even plan for them!  But I still have time.

❧  Whole-cloth quilt   

❧  Quilt As You Go project  

Other Stats::

⦿ 9 quilts finished that are table runner size or larger

⦿  4 mini quilts, 

⦿  1 table topper ready for quilting 

⦿  4 tops quilted for others

Favorite Finishes are, without a doubt, the Paper Doll Quilts!

So, I guess it is obvious what I need to work on for the the remainder of the year.  More camping and camping journal blocks!  😁

I'm not typically a procrastinator, but I think I'll be putting off the quilt-as-you-go and whole cloth projects for a while.  At least until this fall.  I have plenty of other things that will keep me busy in the studio.

Have you done a mid-year review?  
How are you doing with your goals?

Leave a comment.  I'd love to hear how you are doing!

Stay Piece-ful,


Linking with:

2021 Mid-year Check in at Quilting Jet Girl
Scrap Happy Saturday at Super Scrappy
Oh Scrap! at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework
Sunday Stash at QuiltPaintCreate
Patchwork & Quilts at The Quilting Patch
Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt
Design Wall Monday at Small Quilts and Doll Quilts

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

July One Month Goal

It is probably pretty safe to say we have all heard of "Where's Waldo"... but my question is "Where did June go???"  

Where it may have dashed off to, I cannot say but, I CAN say I successfully completed my June One Month Goal.  AND I can say linking up with Patty at Elm Street Quilts made it all worth it... because she gives prizes!  And I won one.  Woohoo!  I am awaiting the arrival of an Oliso mini travel iron.  I'm so excited!

Now, talk about incentive to set a goal and complete it!

The OMG for July is to complete the memory quilt that I am currently working on.

Normally, it would be no big deal, as I am typically able to do one, start to finish, in about 10 days... sometimes only one week, depending on the size and complexity of the pattern.

This one is a little more involved.  It is a 14" block with 61(!) pieces!! and there are 12 blocks... that's 732 pieces just in the blocks.  There are an additional 62 pieces for the sashing strips and corner stones.

Gosh!  No wonder it seems as though I have been in my studio cutting for... everrrrrrr.  ✂✂✂

Last week I had estimated that I would get at least 6 blocks fully pieced.  Boy was I wrong!

Oh, of course my plans went awry when we got the message that our daughter planned to spend the day with us on July 4th.  Not only did we have church in the morning, but we hosted a big BBQ for members as well as the local community.

It was great fun!
Our Little Fire Crackers 💗

A fun game of Jenga with Kampa
Great-Grandma with little Hanna, now 2 months old
She was obviously tired since she had her Momma
up early requesting a feeding and entertainment.
There was food, fun and games for all ages!

But... back to quilting.

While I didn't get any blocks pieced as I had hoped, I did get all of the pieces cut and snowball corners done on Friday. The HST sewing happened on Saturday afternoon.

It took a long time to get the HSTs trimmed to size, but NOW I am ready to roll.

I'm not going to put a time frame on it since I was so far off with my previous estimation... thus my goal for getting it done by the end of July.  

We have a couple of camping trips planned for the near future, including a weekend with the grands, our daughters and one SIL.  Two years ago we made a special trip with our oldest, her husband and the kiddos, and then last year we had a "Nolan Family Cabin Camping Weekend" with our girls and the grands (no, the sons-in-law were not brave enough to join us).  

Though with each activity there were text messages and pictures sent to them with responses that were similar to "oh, I wish I was there" or "that looks fun, or "that looks really good", in the case of the food photos.  The replies were always "You should have gone camping!"

It was filled with such fun, good food, crazy laughter and so many memories that the grands asked to do it again.  And what Grandparent could turn THAT down???  You bet we are making it happen.  The "camp crafts" have been planned and all the necessary supplies acquired.  We will be doing tie-dye shirts, "pour art" or "blow art", some nature projects with photo paper, learning gun and archery safety and shooting a pellet gun and the bow.  There will probably be some games, lots and lots of food, whittling for the oldest with the pocket knife we gifted him at Christmas, and who knows what else we might find to do.  

My Mom will be joining us again for at least one day, making 4 generations of camping memories.  There is nothing better!

I have many memories of camping with my grandparents... A three week trip of visiting Arches National Monument, Salt Lake City, Yellowstone and the Tetons is a stand out, but there were so many more!

What are some of your favorite memories with your grandparents?

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

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