Scrappy Triangles

A month or so ago I read a blog post from Debbie at A Quilters Table. She had made a few scrappy triangles from one of her blogger friends. She piqued my interest. Leila Gardunia at Sewn by Leila Gardunia started a year of scrappy triangles tutorial in foundation paper piecing. I read her first post about it and then about foundation paper piecing. I printed a few of the patterns and put it on my to-do list.

While waiting for the weather to warm up I went to my sewing room and did my two 100 day projects. With lots of time to sew, I picked up the FPP pattern and gave it a try. I have lots of scraps but not much in the way of low volume scraps. I have, and like, lots of green scraps. I also have some yardage of solids in a variety of greens, perfect for the top of HSTs.

So I dug into my green scraps and started paper piecing. These were my first three patterns. I was hooked. They are so fun to make. Back I went to Leila’s blog to read more. That’s when it hit me: the project is A YEAR of scrappy triangles. Yep, 52 FPP patterns and another long-term project.

Here we go. Leila is on week 30; I am on block 17 and I’m loving it. I’m adding colors as I go: blues, orange, yellow, aqua.

The best part is picking out fabrics and colors.

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More projects; some progress

Let’s face it; I have enough fabric, I love to sew, I have no one to sew for. That means I find something I like and go for it. I found two projects. One I had to buy fabric for, and I love it. It was a 101 piece charm pack of bright Kona solids from Moda.

Aren’t they pretty? I joined #100daysofkonacolor and am making 4 HST every day from two squares of color and the gray. It will take less than 100 days but I’m okay with that. I can miss a few days and still keep up. It’s just so much more manageable at this pace.

We are officially 4 weeks into the craft projects, so I need to have 28 of whatever I’m doing. I have 300 four-patches and 32 HST doubles so I’m ahead of the game. These two projects take less than 30 minutes of my time in the sewing room which is good for spring sewing.

The weather is warming up and I will need to be getting yard work done which gives me less time sewing. It’s good to have goals and projects to keep me in my sewing room.

Crazy Scraps

So…

Amanda Jean at Crazy Mom Quilts makes lots of scrap quilts. She saves all her scraps. I save most of mine, too, but usually not the small ones. On one of her recent blog posts she showed this quilt

It is made of hundreds of four-patch squares. I love it. I decided I have enough scraps to make one, too. Although I don’t believe mine will be this big–it’s at least a queen size. I tend to make lap size quilts. Then I began.

I went scrounging through one of my scraps bins, the one with the small scraps and squares. Those squares need to be 1&1/2″ each. I had a stack that size plus squares that were 3″ and 3&1/2″ that I could cut down without much waste. As you can see, there are lots of odd shaped scraps, too. Those are all getting cut down.

Now let me do the math. 50 X 70 inch lap quilt yields 875, 4-patch squares. That’s 3704 1&1/2″ squares. I chain piece two squares together until I have 200. Then I sew those together in groups of 10 until I have 100. And I only need to do this 10 times.

I read on a blog recently about something called the #The100DayProject. Anyone can join and do any project they want. I joined and the moderators send me an email every week keeping on task. I’m making this quilt.

My plan is to make 10 4-patch squares every day. I started late so I have some catching up to do.

I have 100 squares completed, 200 twos ready to sew together and a few stacks of squares. Each day after I make my 10 4-patches, I will either sew together some squares or cut some more from scraps. It’s doable. By July 4 I’ll be ready to sew them together. I’ll need another goal to get that done, too.

It’s a scrap quilt. I’m okay if this takes a while to complete.

Waiting For Spring

Today is April 15.

It is only six or so inches compared to more than 10 in The Cities or Green Bay. No spring here yet; Easter was 2 weeks ago and we have barely seen grass, held a golf club, or walked onto a pickleball/tennis court. Tulips are far from peeking through the ground and we can only think about what we will be planting. I even had a tough time cleaning out my winter porch pot.

To keep busy, and keep my mind off the weather, I’ve read a few books. Another Inspector Gamache and The Great Alone kept me interested for a few days.

My sewing room is also busy. I’m joining a 100 Day Project and making another scrap quilt. I also took a few weeks to participate in a free-motion quilting challenge, and indeed, it was a challenge. All of those are separate entries–I have lots of time on my hands to do indoor activities.

The Pacific Northwest

Portland, the Oregon coast, Olympia National Park, Victoria Vancouver, Seattle, ferry rides, Portland. What a wonderful 10 day excursion. In Portland, we took our first Uber ride and John is now it’s biggest fan. He understands why Kelly uses it when she goes out. We had no idea how to get to the Pearl District from our motel, so we called Uber and off we went. We could enjoy a few beers at some of the many breweries downtown and get home safely.

This was our first view of what as to come. Mt. Hood from the air.

We drove off to Depoe Bay to see the whales,and see them we did. They were “dating.” Some of the pairs swam close to the shore and showed off for us. Actually it was the male showing off for the female, but we didn’t take it personally… It’s difficult to get pictures of them actually fluking, but I’m glad we stopped because the next day on the way back, fog covered the area and no one was whale watching.

Our first view of the Pacific.

Then Newport and a walk along the beach. Beautiful, breezy, a bit of fog, and very cold water.

We traveled along the ocean and inland on Highway 101 on our way to Astoria. There we encountered a three mile long bridge across the mighty Columbia River, a maritime museum, and Bow Pickers. Bow Pickers is an old fishing boat, parked in a gravel lot, converted to a “food boat,” selling fish and chips. That’s all they sell besides a can of soda or water. Best fish and chips.

Next leg of the journey is Washington. Next post.

Two Bear, Two Friends

Look at this beautiful setting. It is Two Bear lake near Weyerhaeuser. Our friends John and Renae live there. We spent a day there a few weeks ago enjoying good weather and good company, although is took us a while to get there. Road construction is all I need to say. Everywhere you travel by state or county trunk between New Auburn and Bruce and over toward Chetek, all the culverts are being rebuilt. We were a half mile from our turn when we encountered a back hoe in the middle of the road. We had to turn around, go back, and come in from the opposite direction. Thirty miles and thirty minutes later, we arrived.

We took our paddle boards out on the lake just as the sun appeared from under the clouds. We talked over a few beers and wine and ate some delicious pork tenderloin. Two weeks later I spent another afternoon with Renae and her friend Doria at Stout Island. The day was chilly and rainy, but again, weather didn’t seem to dampen our joy.

And now the best part is John and Renae have rented a place in Palm Desert in January and February so we will be able to spend time together there, too. It’s always nice to have friends nearby.

When We Were Young

Class reunions put many people in a quandary. Do you want to go? Who do you want to see? My answers were “yes” and “everybody.” Fifty years is a long time. At 18 we were young and carefree and full of enthusiasm. We wondered where we would be in fifty years, knowing we were ready to set the world on fire. Awaiting us were college, marriage, families, careers–real life. That independence we had so longed for was ours. No more basketball games, no marching band, no forensics meets, no class plays or proms. Gone was Dad’s car, and gas, Mom’s meals, fresh laundry, and a warm bed. For a few years we could live off the family while attending college, but our fate was now up to us.

Turns out, we didn’t do so bad. We turned out to be successful teachers, nurses, business people, business owners, mothers, fathers, husbands, and wives. Add to that, grandparents and retirees, mostly. Adding fifty years to friendships formed while we are young changes very little. Sure, the pettiness is gone, but all those experiences we shared over twelve years held us together as we reminisced over food and drink.

My kids chose not to attend their thirty year class reunions; they see the friends they want to see. We live in their home town. Not me. I don’t get to see my high school friends often. I moved away and only get to see them every five years for a few hours. But it is so worth the time. We’ve changed, but when we get together it’s like graduation was just last week.

Forty+ Years of Vacation

This is vacation and has been for over forty years. These guys don’t look a day over 30, do they. Jen and Lisa were just a year old the first year and baby Kelly was 6 weeks old for her first year. Now they are all grown up with kids of their own. This was our first year in Hayward at Treelands Resort. We lived in duplexes with the cousins in adjoining ones so everyone could be together with the mature adults in their own place. It was quiet and relaxing although we didn’t sit on the water. The kids had a pool and lots of resort activities. We didn’t get to interact much with Hannah and Hailey; they were too busy with their cousins.

We found an island out in the flowage and boated out to it a few days. We swam in the backyard pool, and had an evening campfire. A couple of chilly days had us inside playing cards, reading, and napping. We all loved the new place and will be going back next year. Family is what is important here. When I mentioned to Kelly that this vacation is more for the second cousins now, she replied, “No, it’s still for us.” She’s right. It’s for all three generations.

Ready For Vacation…Quilt Top Finished

IMG_1328This is a scrap quilt. This is the history of quilting. Take all the good fabric from old, worn out clothes, cut it into squares, and sew them all together. ¬†Our grandmothers did it because they had to; I do it because I like to. No, this isn’t worn out clothes, but it is all scrap fabric. The navy is left over from a quilt back and the green was a large, left-over piece of fabric. The strips were all saved pieces of fabrics from quilts-gone-by. I intend to find large enough pieces of batting to piece together, and I have some large pieces in mind to piece together for the back…a completely scrap quilt. The way quilts are supposed to be made.

… and I got the top sewn before leaving on vacation.