Monday, January 16, 2017

New Year, Same Old Me

Well, lookie here.  I survived going back to work and jury duty.  Honestly, I wasn't positive I'd make it.  I had that terrible plague that everyone has and I really didn't think I'd have the energy to get out of the house.  Alas, I'm alive and feeling fairly healthy after the full 10 days of anti-biopics.  Now the kids are sick.  Bethany & Hunter are miserable.  Hunter sounds like he's drowning in goo.  Poor guy, but can I get him to go to the doctor?  Nope.  He's a big boy now, gotta make his own decisions. 

Well, enough about all that.  Work closed down over this last weekend because of a big ice storm.  I took advantage of the bonus days off and tried a new cake recipe.  This is Almond Cake with Almond Ruffle Frosting.  Now, the picture doesn't do the color justice.  It's actually the most obnoxious violet color...  Clearly, I need more practice making cakes that are not for a child's birthday.  I'm practicing for our Anniversary party next year.  I want to do my own cake because I know my cakes taste better than any bakery I've tried but my decorating skills are terrible!  So, I declared this the year of the cake.  My frosting was a little loose and I didn't make enough to begin with.  Big learning curve.  I'm real used to cupcakes.
On Christmas, I received a bucket of yarn from Hunter's girlfriend.  Part of their Minimalist lifestyle is getting rid of things they don't need.  Sounds like a nightmare to me, but they've got to live life their way.  Lucky me, I got lots of pretty yarn and decided to start a granny square afghan.  I've already used up 1 skein but I'm not nearly as far as I thought I was.  This might end up as a baby blanket although that wasn't my original intent.  I had hoped to give them a blanket for the school bus that they are renovating into a home (no need for baby blankets for several years, one hopes).  Plus, crocheting always makes my hands cramp.
 I made it to step 6 with Bonny Hunter's En Provence quilt along.  I was very liberal in my green choices.  I didn't want to buy more, so I did some dark and light along with the medium.  I really needed her new triangle ruler kit for this one.  I finally found a fussy cut ruler that  worked in the end.  The tri recs ruler didn't have the right angle.  Literally.  Then, I looked to see what came next and it's even more hourglass blocks!  That may wait.  Doing tons of the same block over and over gives me a rash...
 Here's the rest of my En Provence.  So close to being done!  Just 80 more hourglass blocks... feel the sarcasm.
 This is my favorite block yet from my Deco Gardens quilt!  Man, I wish I'd been using more orange the whole time!  It's just spectacular with the black background!
 So, I finished the final block, centered and cut them down to size.  Up on the design wall, ready to finalize the block placement, only to realize I think it's too small.  Ugh!  I stared at it for a week & couldn't convince myself it was done.  I don't like that it's a square.  So, luckily she designed  several additional blocks that I can buy and add 1 more row.  I'll have to choose ones that I can make orange. I had accidentally purchased too many earlier.  So, I have a gorgeous daffodil to add next.  The additional blocks she did are really elaborate and will add tones of interest to the whole.
 This is the most recent round robin from my local Crazy Quilt group.  It's my block but none of my work.  I'm so proud of our group.  Most are new to Crazy Quilting and even embroidery.  We've met for a year this January and everyone is becoming so much more confident!  Look at my little Scottie dog!  Love it!
 This is my Crazy Quilt Journal Project for 2017.  I decided on a mono-chromatic scheme.  It was much more challenging than I expected.  Now the rest of the year is looking pretty daunting.  I think it'll be key to collect more embellisments to add rather than count on my own embroidery, like I did last year.  I bought some beautiful hand dyed laces from Raviolee Dreams on Etsy.  And, I just placed an order for some more golden silk ribbon.  My dying skills don't include those shades.
 I finished my sweater.  I promise the panels aren't that uneven.  Bethany took the picture but didn't mention it in time to correct the way I was wearing it.  I love it!  I'm not a sweater person.  I wore it to work today and almost had heat stroke.  I'm always too warm.  All that extra padding, I'm sure.
And, that's all I've got.  I'm still waiting on my Pfaff to come back from he dealer.  It had to be forwarded on to headquarters and apparently they're in no hurry to get it back to me.  Thank goodness I still have my BabyLock for back up but it's not nearly as good of a machine.  I've gotten very spoiled.  Speaking of which, I had my Twisted Mystery quilt in at Jane Hair's to be quilted.  My turn came up and she realized I screwed up & she can't quilt it!  I'm sick over it.  My outer borders are super straight and flat but the center puffs up by a few inches.  Ugh!  I'm wondering if it's the difference in machines.  I started it on the BabyLock but finished on the Pfaff.  Doesn't look like that's going to make it in the quilt show this year.  Here I thought I'd have trouble deciding which ones to enter.  Now I'm wondering what's going to be done in time.  Bah.

Talk to you soon, Happy New Year!