Monday, November 29, 2021

No Guilt::Go Quilt - Green Enchilada Chicken Soup

Where would I be with out my slow cooker??? Stuck in the kitchen making dinner, that's where!

Thanks to my personal assistant and sous chef, my crockpot, I was able to FINALLY complete a few items that had been on my To-do list for weeks.  I'll share the recipe in a minute...

✔  The pattern test is DONE!  I can't share the finished top, but as I stated last week (and shared), one of the options allows you to use a panel at the center.  I had to add to the panel I had selected to get it the correct size... 

Here's a peek at what came next...

The other item completed was the Christmas stocking for our newest grand-daughter, Hanna.

After we celebrated Thanksgiving on Wednesday evening the three darling girls came home with us since their Mom & Dad had to work the remainder of the week/weekend.  

Naps were needed as we "watched" the Thanksgiving Day parade...

Once everyone was refreshed and recharged the afternoon involved riding and driving Dave's new-to-him tractor...

Hanna was hanging out with me inside, happy and content with her plethora of toys offering entertainment as I enjoyed some Hallmark movies...

After a repeat of day one on day two, we ventured into town for the Tree Lighting Ceremony.

Grand times with the Grand-babies! 💗  But alas, the fun came to an end when our other daughter, Rebecca picked them up to return to Pueblo so that they could all sleep in their own beds for Saturday night.  They trimmed her tree, colored/decorated eggs, watched Aladdin and played hide and seek...

That was when I called out my crock to help me out.  On the menu was Green Enchilada Chicken Soup 

2.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
28 oz can green enchilada sauce
24 oz chicken or vegetable broth
1 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt & pepper to taste

Cook for 6-8 hours.  Shred chicken.  Stir in 4 oz cream cheese until melted/blended.

Optional garnish:  avocado, green onion, sour cream, cilantro

Serve with quesadillas or chips

I used dairy-free cream cheese and it was delish!  Dave loved it as well. :)

✔  While the soup was simmering away, I was finishing Hanna's stocking.  Ta-da!

❧  On the cutting table next is a collection of little lovey blankets that came with Disney Babies.  This is a custom memory quilt... 

The little blankets  are two-sided and I'll be using a layout similar to the "Little Princess" one in the lower right corner.

I'll need to add some other fabric to make it a 60"x80" finished quilt, but this should be a fun project.

❧  I'll also be getting the pattern for the label of the Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail quilt finalized and tested, as well as a wrap-up of Marion's Memoir.

I continue to search for another "topic" for another special sew along, several suggestions have been made.  Keep the suggestions coming!  I'm still on the hunt.  

One book I have ordered is about five women that made aviation history.  Another I have looked at is by Rose Wilder Lane written in 1925... the only book I have located happens to be selling for $70 and I'm not sure I want to invest quite that much money.  It is a fictional biography of Jack London with a San Francisco setting.  

One last idea I have had was to do a collection of classic books with each having a block of their own.  

What do you think?

Leave a comment... I'm open to ideas and I'd love to hear from you!

Be blessed and keep piecing,


Linking with:

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
To Do Tuesday at Texas Quilt Gal
Mid-week Makers at Quilt Fabrication
Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter
Put Your Foot Down at For the Love of Geese
Needle & Thread Thursday at My Quilt Infatuation

Saturday, November 27, 2021

Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail Assembly

The time has  come to assemble the quilt top!!!

Fabric Requirements that had been provided back in June:

*12 fat quarters, plus a yard of unbleached muslin to piece the blocks for piecing the blocks
*1 additional FQ for cornerstones
*1 yard for sashing strips
*1/3 yard unbleached muslin – I had enough from my original 1 yard 
*1/2 yard blue border
*Scrappy border – I used the remnants of the 12 FQ or the blocks
*Binding – 1/2 yard for a 1 color binding

In summary, I worked with 12 FQ, 1 yard unbleached muslin, a total of 3 yards of a neutral print fabric for the sashing strips and backing and 2 yards of a bright blue for a border and backing.  I pieced the backing to make it work.

Cut 20 - 2-1/2" squares From 1 FQ for cornerstones
Cut 4 - 4-1/2" squares from the same FQ for the final border corners
Cut 11 - 2-1/2" strips - sub-cut into 31-12-1/2" sashing strips

Layout 4 rows with 3 blocks each.
  Feel free to rearrange as you desire until you find a pleasing and balance arrangement.  

I find it helpful to take pictures to help identify anything that might look out of place.  You want your eyes to move easily over the layout.  If there is one block that my eyes repeatedly, I try a new layout.

Join the rows of blocks with a sashing strip between each block.  Make the rows of sashings  with cornerstones and place between the rows of blocks.

First border (1/3 yard):  Cut 5 strips 1-1/2" wide.  Join strips together.  Sub-cut to make 2 strips 58-1/2" long.  Sew to the sides.  Cut 2 strips 48-1/2" long.  Join to the top and bottom.

Second border (1/2 yard):  Cut 3 strips 2-1/2" wide, join together and sub-cut to make 2 - 60-1/2" long borders.  Attach to the sides.  Cut 3 strips 3" wide.  Join together and sub-cut to make 2 - 46-1/2" long borders.  Sew to top and bottom.

Using assorted fabrics remaining from the blocks, cut 46 - 4-1/2" x 5" rectangles.

Join together 13 rectangles (seams on the 4-1/2" sides of the rectangles)  for each side and 10 rectangles for the top and bottom borders.  Add a 4-1/2" square to each end of the top and bottom scrappy borders.

Your top is now ready to be sandwiched and quilted.

Quilt as desired.  I used a hanging diamond grid with the lines 1-1/2" apart.  This is a simple, vintage style, utilitarian quilting.  Something that may have been seen on the trail.

Binding (1/2 yard):  Cut 7 - 2-1/2" strips.  Join together and press in half.  I you are a beginning quilter you can find details about binding techniques here.

Be sure you come back on December 16th for a final post about Marion & Richard and their lives in Stonewall, Colorado and one final pattern to create a label for your quilt.

The linky party for finished quilts will be with the final block and open until December 31st.  There is a special give away opportunity for those that join the quilt parade with a finished top... unfortunately, it is available to US addressed only. :(  Sorry.  But I do hope that everyone internationally will still share!  

Keep Piecing,


Did you miss out on the story of Marion Sloan Russell and her travels along the Santa Fe Trail?  You can find all of the excerpts on the Sew Along Announcement (links below).  Pattern links are in each story.  Patterns have a nominal cost of $2 each.

Block 1 - April 8 ~ Kit In The Corner
Block 2 - April 29 ~ Double Nine
Block 3 - May 20 ~ Indian Star
Block 4 - June 10 ~ Snow
Block 5 - July 1 ~ Indian Corn
Block 6 - July 22 ~ Shoo Fly
Block 7 - August 12 ~ Prairie Flowers
Block 8 - September 2 ~ Grandmother's Block
Block 9 - September 23 ~ Comfort Of Home
Block 10 - October 14 ~ Wagon Trail
Block 11 - November 4 ~ New Mexican Star
Block 12 - November 25 ~ Tecolote
Block 13 - December 16 ~ Label 

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail - Tecolote

In the words of Marion Sloan Russell...

We did not stay much longer in Fort Bascom for Richard was ordered to report to Fort Union for further orders. I think of For Bascom tenderly, for a little grave is there where Hattie Eliza is sleeping.

We now waited in Fort Union for Richard to be mustered out of the army. He and Mr. DeHague had planned a new business venture.... At last there came a day when we left Fort Union forever; Fort Union that had sheltered and protected me since I was seven. I tried not to look back, for a new life was beginning for me, and it is better to walk with our eyes before us than with them cast behind.

Richard and Mr. DeHague decided in 1866 to go to Tecolote, New Mexico and establish a trading post there. Tecolote was simply a watering place west of Las Vegan on the Santa Fe Trail. Tecolote, like all New Mexico town, was just a collection of low adobe houses and narrow crooked streets. It was thriving and prosperous and we felt we would do well there.

Tecolote - the Indian name means "owl" - had a romantic and mysterious origin. Old mine shafts, crumbling and long unused were there. There were old ovens, hunks of slag and bits of half-melted ore. Even the oldest Mexican inhabitant could not recall ever having heard his grandfather tell the story of the old mines.

We bought a site for our trading post in 1866 and immediately erected the great stone building that was to be both store and dwelling. The store was wide and spacious. Its low ceiling was crossed by massive beams. The long shelves were piled high with everything under the sun. There were implements, feed, food, household furnishings, clothing, saddles, bridles, harness and Navajo blankets. There were strings of red peppers and jars of azule or Indian corn. There were jars of Mexican beans and piles of golden pumpkins.

We bought everything the Mexicans or Indians had for sale or trade. Early each morning they would come wandering in from the red, rolling hills. Some would come on foot driving before them a goat or a sheep. Some would come in carts or wagons bringing cheese, peppers, a coop of red chickens or a sack of white Spanish onions. Some would come in leading burros loaded down with firewood. Both the Indians and the Mexicans raised corn and we bought it from them for 8 cents a pound. A hind quarter of mutton or goat meat could be had for about 50 cents a pound.

Our records show that in the month of October, when we opened our little trading post, we bought of C.H. Moor at Fort Union a bill of goods amounting to $3,257.

We bought pottery, blankets and beadwork from the Mexicans and Indians, and we were usually able to trade these things to wagoners eastward bound. We traded corn for Indian blankets and turquoise and silver jewelry. When we traded corn for an Indian blanket, two Indians would hold the blanket by its four corners. The amount of shelled corn the blanket would hold bought the blanket. Our corn measure we called a "fanega". It was made from a buffalo hide. The purchaser held the hide and was permitted to shake it down three times. The amount of shelled corn the old hide measure would hold was about 2-1/2 bushels. Our yard measure was the Spanish "vara" - 33-1/3 inches in length.

Our trading post at Tecolote was a meeting place for all the nomads of that desert land: Indian men wrapped in gaudy blankets, Mexican women in black-fringed shawls; cowboys in red shirts and big hats; brown babies in nothing at all, sat, leaned, stood and squatted all over the place.

It was very exciting when the freight trains pulled in. Then the nomads gathered from far and near, and the bartering would go on for days. Once I bartered two cows and a bull for material enough to make me two dresses. One was a heavy moiré silk - blue and black silk brocade. The two patterns cost me the equivalent of $125.00. The material was good. Daughters, then unborn, had to help me wear out those two dresses.

Richard always wanted me to look well, so I dressed as well and as becomingly as I could. I never permitted myself to wear a soiled dress or apron. I never went with my hair uncombed. Each afternoon I bathed and dressed clean and fresh. Personal cleanliness has never been one of life's necessities for me.

We had five living rooms behind the store. They were cool and pleasant. The thick stone walls resisted both heat and cold. The windows were long and narrow running from the ceiling to the floor. I draped them with a gay silken print. The floor I had covered with Navajo rugs, which I never really wanted. I remember how I longed for a flowered Brussels carpet. The beds were four-posters. Richard made them for me on his new turning lathe. I was so proud of those four-posters, and kept the spreads and the valances white as snow. Pictures in great, gilt frames I hung on my walls. A lamp with a red shade sat on the claw-footed center table. There were the inevitable red geraniums. I had several pieces of red plush furniture brought by wagon train from Leavenworth. Our chairs were split-bottomed. Over the kitchen door on deer antlers was Richard's array of rifles.

In my kitchen was a nice step-stove. It, also, had come from Leavenworth and had cost Richard a pretty penny. That stove was the light of my eyes and the joy of my heart. It was made like two stair-steps. Each step was used for cooking. The oven heated nicely and many a savory roast did I bake in it. That stove was the envy of all my neighbors. One woman offered me $50 for it. 'Most everyone in Tecolote baked in outdoor, bee-hive ovens.

Near Tecolote was a salt-sink and Richard would go there with freight wagons and a number of laborers for salt. The barefooted Mexicans wade out into the sink and shovel the salt up into windrows. The waves lapping over the windrows would clean it nicely. Then it was loaded into the wagons and hauled away. A cleaner, whiter grade of salt might be procured at another sink farther down in Texas, but because of hostility, the government had forbidden the men going there.

In May of 1867 little Katie Elmira came to us. Another cradle swayed on the hearth rug and I now sang as I worked, the grave at Fort Bascom was only a sad memory.

In 1869 Mr. DeHague was appointed Forage Agent at Tecolote and we made some money furnishing feed to the freight teams. Every extra penny we could lay hands on we spent buying Texas long-horns. The entire profit of the post was so invested. Richard had never forgotten his dream of being a cattle rancher.

In the fall of 1869 another child was born to Richard and me. It was fun to watch Katie Elmira fold her dimpled hands behind her and stand watching the interloper in her small cradle.

Richard now began thinking of selling the post and hunting a ranch where we might drive our herd of cattle. In January of 1870, however, his brother, John, came to us from Chicago. John was ill with tuberculosis and we laid our own plans aside that we might give him the care that he needed. The clean, warm air of New Mexico healed him as it had so many before him, and, in June of that year, he and Richard began planning a pack-horse to Cheyenne, Wyoming. I was appalled when they told me, for Cheyenne lay many miles northward. John was not only still weak and ailing, but he was a tenderfoot. He had scarcely been on a horse in his life. John and Richard were determined they would go, looking as they went for a new ranch location, and when they reached Cheyenne they would sell their pack animals and go back to Chicago on that new Union Pacific train. By this time Mr. DeHague had absconded with much of our money and Richard was beginning to be discouraged.

Long days of waiting followed Richard's and John's departure.... They reached Cheyenne, Wyoming, in good time and bought tickets on the first train to leave Cheyenne going eastward. Everyone turned out to see the departure.

Richard visited awhile with his relatives in Chicago.  They tried hard to get him to go into the mercantile business there.  He had not been in Chicago long, however, until he knew definitely that he would never be happy anywhere but in the West.  It was over his sister's tearful protests that he returned to New Mexico.  He came home by way of the Overland Stage.  New Mexico had no railroad.  Traveling by stage, Richard said, was a most wholesome social experience, for nowhere else does one meet so many agreeable people.

He had been gone altogether about three months, the longest period of time we had ever been separated.  He returned a bit unexpectedly.  Even at that I was watching for him at the kitchen window ever since he and John had faded out of sight with their pack horses.  Now I saw the Overland State swing into sight around the bend in the red dirt road.  The four horses were loping easily, the canopied stage swaying.  A moment later he was standing in front of the trading post surrounded by Indians and loafers.  His eyes were on mine as I stood by the window.  I heard his laughing voice.  I heard him open the door and cross the floor to come and stand beside me.  I simply stood there transfixed with joy.  I could not move nor could I speak to him.  Neither did Richard speak.  He simply took me in his arms and held me while the troubled world rolled onward and left us.

Looking back on my life at Tecolote I find that the big things seem little and the little things seem big.  Someway I have managed to push the grief DeHague's dishonesty caused us into the back of my mind, until at last it is only a shadow.  

Richard sold part of his cattle and managed to pay all outstanding debts.  Then one morning when things were beginning to look more hopeful, 10,000 pounds of shelled corn in the storage room caught fire from spontaneous combustion.  We tried to safe it, but when the fire was extinguished, great piles of blackened corn smoldered behind the trading post for weeks.  Richard bought eighty head of hogs and fattened them on the damaged corn.  Then he hauled them to Fort Sumner, and sold them, receiving $1,000 for them.  I remember how he handed me that money saying, "Marion, you are the only partner I shall ever again have."

In the fall of 1871 Richard sold the trading post and we made preparations to leave Tecolote.

Tecolote - the Indian name means "owl" and the reason I chose this block... the original construction of this block had mitered seams around the center block giving the look of an owl (as shown in the diagram to here).  I made the pattern to be beginner friendly by eliminating those Y-seams.

Richard's and Marion's lives could nearly be a Hallmark movie!  Their love for each other was deep and evident to those around them.  

Their love for each other was all that was needed. And it stayed with her for years, even after Richard's death.  As she said, "I find that the big things seem little and the little things seem big."  

With the Holidays upon us, many are reflecting about what brings true joy to our lives.  And I agree with Marion... 

What "little things" are really the big things in your life?

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

Now is the time to 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!

Since this is the last block for the quilt top, here is a reminder of the Fabric Requirements that had been provided back in June:

*12 fat quarters, plus a yard of unbleached muslin to piece the blocks for piecing the blocks
*1 additional FQ for cornerstones
*1 yard for sashing strips
*1/3 yard unbleached muslin – I had enough from my original 1 yard 
*1/2 yard blue border
*Scrappy border – I used the remnants of the 12 FQ or the blocks
*Binding – 1/2 yard for a 1 color binding

In summary, I worked with 12 FQ, 1 yard unbleached muslin, a total of 3 yards of a neutral print fabric for the sashing strips and backing and 2 yards of a bright blue for a border and backing.  I pieced the backing to make it work.

Cutting and assembly instructions will be released very soon!

Be Thankful & Keep Piecing,


Linking with:

Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter
Off The Wall Friday with Nina Marie
Peacock Party at Wendy’s Quilts and More
Friday Foto Fun at Powered by Quilting

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Tuesday's To-Do Ramblings

The list is short and sweet this week...  

❧  Finish the pattern test... The center panel is complete and I am pleased.  The only issue I had was that it was just a smidge too wide.  I took a very narrow seam on the left side of the prayer.  While not the ideal correction to the issue, I will bury it in the quilting.  I am planning to do the hanging diamond grid on the wall hanging and I think it will be just fine.

❧  Finish Hanna's Christmas Stocking...

The other stockings for the grands have little bells hanging from the prairie points.  I have just one bell on hand, and I don't want to buy a bag of 12...  I came across three little snowflakes that I will dangle from the points.

I hope to get it done in time to send it home with the kiddos so that it can be hung with the rest of the family's stockings when Heather is ready to decorate.

I want to make a "baby's first Christmas" ornament with her picture on it too... but that can wait a bit.  It will be a tag on her gift.

Speaking of gifts.  We unexpectedly got all of our Christmas shopping done on Saturday!  Ok, well a little bit of it spilled over to yesterday but we now only need to wait for the gifts that have been ordered to arrive.

We had gone to the local farm supply store for something not related to Christmas at all and walked out with only Christmas gifts for the wee ones.  LOL!  

In other news... The book signing event last week was a success.  Nearly 40 people came by and 22 books were sold.  A friend that I worked with years ago sent me a message with a picture of "my name in the lights" saying he was proud of me.  The local bank advertises upcoming local events and the book signing was one of them. :)  It was great to see friends and acquaintances that I haven't seen for years... But the best part was being able to talk with some people that remembered my grandparents and shared their memories with me.  Priceless!

I'll be participating in an "Author Market Place" event on December 4th... another opportunity to see more familiar faces and make new friends.

❧  The final item(s) on my list is to enjoy our early Thanksgiving with our family and cherish the time with the grand-daughters for a few days after.

How are you doing with your gift giving list?

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

Have a blessed and safe week,


Linking with:

To Do Tuesday at Texas Quilt Gal

Monday, November 22, 2021

Monday Morning Musings ~ November 22

As we prepare for the week ahead... the kick-off of the "holdiay season", I look forward to some family time.  Since our daughter, Heather, and her husband, Art, are both working on Thursday and the entire weekend, we will be having our Thanksgiving celebration on Wednesday evening.  The fun will not end that evening because we are bringing the grand-daughters home with us until Saturday when they get picked up by Auntie Becca and returned back home to Mom that night.  There will be one last "tag" as a babysitter arrives Sunday morning to finish out the weekend.  Whew...

Having a natural tendency to be an introvert I will be preparing myself mentally for the presence of a larger crowd... Yes, it will be family... yes, I love them all... but the noise and activity over-stimulates me causing me to want to retreat to quiet and solitude!  Haha!  I will be found in my studio FINALLY working on the pattern test that has been waiting for weeks.  It has an option to use a panel as the center of the quilt and I have planned all along to use one that I had inherited in a fabric stash gifting.  

I had selected some coordinating fabrics and started cutting and piecing.  But after the placement of a few components I was completely unhappy with it.  Bleh!  NOW what???  While rummaging in the studio closet for something else unrelated my eyes fell on a panel printed with A Christmas Manger Prayer on it that has been around for many years... just waiting.

I pulled it out with plans to use it for this test.  All was good until I realized it wasn't quite the dimension that the pattern test called for.  I added a few muslin strips that matched the background and proceeded to cut some pieces of Christmas novelty prints but, again, I was unhappy with my selections.  **Ugh**

Jack (the seam-ripper) and I sat and conversed as I removed the muslin strips.  When I was done I added a narrow black border and then dug out some scraps.  I will be creating a stained-glass look to make the center panel section the appropriate size!  Finally I am pleased with my fabric choices and plan to get the panel to the correct size!  I can't reveal more until the designer releases her pattern... 

Those are itty-bitty pieces... and there is a need for a LOT of them!  You know where you can find me. 😉 You may need to look under the piles of fabric... I seem to have quite a mess! 

When I am done messing with all those pieces I will wade out from them and be putting the final touches on the release of block 12 of the Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail Sew Along.  This is the final block required for the top of the quilt so I'll be including cutting and assembly instructions for the sashing strips, corner stones and borders.  I look forward to seeing some of the finished tops very soon!

Whether or not you are traveling to celebrate Thanksgiving with family or friends, be safe and may your gratitude list be long and plentiful.

And consider this a reminder to clean of your table... LOL 

God Bless!


Linking with:

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

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Thankful Thursday - November 18th

Another week filled with things to be thankful for! 

#1  The opportunity to run away, unplug and get rested and refreshed.  Though it was only for two nights, the time away was worth every bit of effort it took to get there.  

We sat, we talked, we walked some, we watched the light on the canyon walls shift... we read, we watched the dog wander and pace trying to find the perfect spot to settle down and enjoy gnawing on an antelope leg she found in the area... we napped, we slept almost 12 hours both nights and we woke to beautiful sunrises.

We viewed the incredible artwork of the Master Artist.  The sunsets and sunrises were beautiful.  I just kept snapping pictures because with every few seconds that passed, the colors were changing and seemed more brilliant and bright.  Here's a little slide show of the show on Sunday night...

I enjoyed reading from the Laura Ingalls Wilder book that I bought while visiting Mount Rushmore.

  News of another grant approved... this one with enough to cover the cost of the printing of the Pieces From The Past Book and the display frame for the quilt.

#3  The opportunity to promote the book with an interview on the local radio station and a book signing event at the local library

Sadly, this book does not include the patterns for the quilt.  When I obtained permission to use the vintage Kansas City Star patterns it was granted specifically that the patterns be offered in a digital format at no cost to the participants of the sew along.

It does, however include all of the letters, family stories, history, and recipes.

If you are interested in a copy of the book you can contact me at and I'll let you know the best way to send payment.  Cost is $25 plus $5 to cover postage within the United States.  International mail requests may be possible.  But, again, you will need to email me at the above address.

#4  The completion of the last rows of our Camping Journal Quilt...

I stitched the Badlands Block and the Mount Rushmore block while we were away.  All I need to do now is embroider the names of the locations and the dates of when we visited the various places on the sign blocks.

Thirty-four blocks representing our six different trips and seventeen different overnight stays were added to our "Journal."  What fun we have had!  Each overnight stay has a block to represent something we saw or did.

It is now time to settle in for the winter and get back to quilting... 

I still have a pattern test to get done!  Thankfully, the designer is kind and understanding. :)

What are YOU thankful for?

Leave a comment... I love to correspond with you via email when you comment.

May you see the abundant blessing in your life!


Linking with:

To Do Tuesday at Texas Quilt Gal
Mid-week Makers at Quilt Fabrication
Wednesday Wait Loss at The Inquiring Quilter
Stitch Sew & Show at Life in the Scrap Patch
I like Thursday at Not Afraid of Color
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

Monday, November 15, 2021

Let's Go


The other day Dave was looking at the weather forecast and said "We should go camping early next week."  

I quickly responded "OKAY! Let's Go."

After a brief assessment of our calendar we decided we could successfully squeeze in a quick trip by leaving after worship on Sunday and return Tuesday morning before the Ladies Ministry Bible Study that I lead that afternoon.

So as this posts, I'll be unplugged and recharging as I gear up for a book signing event at the local library.

We made plans to load the camper, pantry and fridge on Saturday afternoon.  During the morning I was prepping two Fiona Sandwich EPP Postcard Block kits for my entertainment... 

I have a block for the Badlands ready to sew and a variety of fabrics to choose from for the Mount Rushmore block. 

With the completion of these two blocks I will be able to complete another row of our Camping Journal Quilt.

And with blocks to represent this last trip of 2021 I will fill in the last spots of a second row.

While Dave has talked about taking the camper off when we return, he has already mentioned wanting to plan a trip in March... With Galveston as our initial destination and then head east to explore New Orleans and more.

Do you have suggestions of something we MUST see or do?  

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

Stay calm and keep piecing,


Friday, November 12, 2021

It's a Furry Almost-Finished Friday

Try as I might, my customer's Cat quilt is quilted.  I thought I might get it trimmed and the binding done, but... well, sometimes you just have to stop and take care of yourself by going to an adjustment appointment and getting errands done (banking, post office visit and grocery shopping).

While not a complete finish... I will consider this a successful Friday Finish any way.  🎉

Playing on the vertical lines of the cat bodies and angles of the cat's ears, we chose a "hanging diamond" grid.  Since the recipient of this quilt is a tall gentleman, the straight lines offer a more masculine feel than any curvy free-motion quilting. 

Trimming and binding will be done on Saturday.  It will be washed and dried over the weekend as well and sent off to the customer... with just enough time for her to send it to her brother-in-law for his birthday at the end of the month.

Other things that I have been musing about... The Santa Fe Trail Sew Along is nearly finished.  Just one more block to be released for the top (November 25th).  The top can then be assembled and quilted before the end of the year.  A bonus block, intended to be the label for the quilt will be published on December 16th with a summary post.

While enjoying lunch with my mom and her friend the other day I was asked "So, what's next when the Marion Russell stories are done?"  

My response was, "I'm not sure.  I might take a break from hosting a sew-along and just participate in some on-line blocks of the month parties."

By the way, if you are interested, you can still join the sew along fun!  All patterns are available on payhip... You can get a bundle of 9 patterns for the first 9 blocks for just $9... and blocks 10 and 11 are still free.  What a deal!  Eleven patterns for $9...  Each block takes less than an hour to piece and before you know it you will be caught up!  

As I sat quilting the furry felines (which it felt so good to do! {it's been a while.}) I started thinking of other books or themes that would be good subject matter for a similar sew along.  Little House on the Prairie would be fun, but it has already been done... not that I would copy, but I am thinking I want to do something more original.

Anne of Green Gables is a classic that I have grown to love as an adult. And The Secret Garden is another one that was introduced to my daughters that I have come to love. And when I did a search for quilts of these, the only items I found were manufactured items from places such as Pottery Barn.

Though these are more popular books, they are well known and could still be fun to design blocks for a sampler quilt.  

I am open to ideas!  
Historical, Fiction, Non-Fiction... 

Leave a comment... I'd love to hear your ideas!

Stay Pieceful,


Linking with:

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Patchwork & Quilts at The Quilting Patch