Our trip to Italy

Our daughter Alison lives in Freiberg Germany with her husband.  She is a  world traveler and has been to all seven continents before she reached the age of 30.   Her extensive travels bring her to all the romantic countries as well as the not so romantic .  She even  played with the penguins on the Antarctic a few years ago.  You can read all about her travels here.   http://www.aliadventures.com/

She writes for several travel companies and also does research on different countries then writes about them.  I’m happy that she’s making a living for herself doing something she loves.

A few months ago we flew to Germany, met up with her and her husband and the 4 of us went to Italy for 3 1/2 weeks.   We stayed in apartments throughout our travels, the best way to travel.     I can honestly say I even lost a few pounds while we ate pasta and drank wine daily.  our first apartment in Florence was on the top floor of a walk up.  yep,  we had to walk up 67 steps every day, sometimes twice. I refused to do it more than that.   in Rome we had an elevator but you had to use a fob, we only had one so Ali and Andy had to walk if they weren’t with us.  that was over 100 steps.

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Florence Italy
Leaning tower Piza J & T
We’re at Piza, the leaning kind.

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Look at that quilt block

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You’re probably saying, “What on earth is that”?. well, yes it does look odd especially since we were touring all thru Italy seeing ancient architecture. this photo is ancient too. Actually this is where my Grandma lived before she came to America in 1911. So its over 100 years old and still standing even after they had a earthquake a few years back. This is a tiny town in the toe of Italy called Reggio Calabria.  It’s about the poorest part of Italy. We’re told all the tax money goes up to Rome so there’s nothing left to rebuild this tiny town.

church Gallina
Gallina, the town where my Grandma was born.  We are thinking that she was married in this church and her first born son, Bruno was baptized here. It’s the only church in the town.   It looks new because it is, it was destroyed during the last earthquake.
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The Coliseum in Rome. Still under reconstruction.



quilt blk Forum
I even found some quilt blocks in the ruins of The Forum.
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Amalfi Coast The most beautiful sites in Italy.

There’s so much more , Tom took over 900 photos.   But I’m running out of room and time.  Have to get back to quilting .


Bonnie Hunter’s mystery

I’ve  gotten all my customer’s tops quilted and delivered so now it’s “me” time.

And just in time too.  Yesterday started Bonnie Hunter’s newest mystery. She usually starts posting a new mystery the day after Thanksgiving and this time I was ready.  I had all my fabric collected.  I holy had to purchase some of the turquoise fabric, everything else came from my stash

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Grand Illusion, My fabric choices.



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My half square triangles. I used my “Easy Angle” ruler, I love this ruler, there’s literally no waste and it’s very accurate.
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see how this block lays flat. If you sew the seams with one going up and the other going down, when you press it , it makes a little 4 patch square.
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My 100 blocks. Step one finished.

Step 2 will come out next Friday on Bonnie’s blog.  I just hope I can keep up each week.







finally back to sewing

It’s been quite a while since I posted here.   I had three surgeries this past year then a months travel to Germany and Italy has kept me busy doing other things.  Our daughter and husband live in Germany and we hadn’t seen them in 3 years. So this was a very special trip.  We spent about 4 days touring her town, Freiberg. It’s inthe south west corner of Germany, very close to Switzerland.   I’ll post a few photos of our trip thru Italy soon.

I did manage to quilt a few charity tops. IMG_5116 600IMG_5117600 IMG_5118600 IMG_5121600 IMG_5123600 IMG_5125600 IMG_5126600 IMG_5129600 IMG_5131600 IMG_5132600 I see some of them are a bit blurred.  Must have inadvertently changed a setting on my camera.   Most of these little quilt will go to the hospital for babies, the bigger ones will go to battered women and children’s shelter. I have about 10 more to get quilted this month.

As of today, I’m doing a customer quilt, a log cabin, I can’t believer I have never done one of these.  Will have to put that on my bucket list.   I’ll post a photo when I’m done.  it’s really beautiful.

Celebrating with our friend

Yesterday was a “No sewing ” day.  my husband and I drove to Decatur to meet some very dear friends.    Susan is getting her last Chemo treatment today so we took her out for a celebratory lunch at Leon’s .  Lunch was great and seeing that wonderful smile on Susan’s face made our day. My husband took this photo. He’s really getting into his photography again now that he’s retired.  We’ll be seeing lots of beautiful photos from him soon

Finally Getting Back To Sewing

It’s been a while.

Foot surgery, Carpal Tunnel on both hands, and now I’m dealing with some vertebrae out of whack and a pinched nerve.  Never a dull moment that’s for sure.

I think I can finally say, except for my back pain, I’m back to sewing again.  I have spent the last week and half quilting customer quilts non stop for the entire time. I’ve done 8 so far and still have 11 more to quilt before I can load any of my own.

Since I had so much time where I wasn’t able to sew or quilt, I took that opportunity to have my LA upgraded.  Last year I upgraded to the new computerized system which really has a lot of new perks.  The the company did an update to the C Pod, whatever that is. So my machine went back to Utah. When I got it back  I literally had a brand new machine.  Everything inside the machine, mother board motor, C Pod are all brand new.   What happened was they were unable to update my C Pod because it was too old.  HUH?   4 years is old?  So they had to build a C Pod for me and then replaced the electrical boards .  My machine came back literally brand new,  Stitch count back to zero except for the stitches they used for the burn test  .. And what an improvement.  there are some new features, as few new basting stitches, timers and even bobbin thread count.  It is much quieter too.

I was commissioned to quilt a guild’s Raffle Quilt.  Just got that done. It came out very nicely. I hope that guild raises a lot of $$ , they worked hard on it.

Guild Raffle Quilt


Taking Some Time Out

It’s a beautiful Sunny day here in Georgia, we’re supposed to be in the 90’s today and the rest of the week.

I can’t do any gardening or sewing so I’m taking some time  to relax and try to stay cool.  I recently had Carpal Tunnel surgery on my left hand. That is healing nicely.  And just last week I had Carpal Tunnel surgery on my right hand.    I haven’ been able to sew in almost a month  but I did manage to sneak in some machine embroidery.    Not much strain on my hands with this, all I had to do is sit and watch the machine and change threads.

SF spring2014 mystery

This little wall hanging is from San Francisco Stitch Co.  They do a mystery on a Yahoo group every few months.  This WH has us going to Egypt.  I especially like the camel and the palm tree.  In between my surgeries I was able to stitch out a few of these blocks, that bug in the upper right caused a lot of problems.  (Just like they do here in GA)    I was using metallic threads and my needle broke. I changed it and again it broke.  It took 4 broken needles before I finally gave up and had my husband bring the machine in for repair.

I have a few more weeks before the Dr will give his OK for me to sew again.  I’m sure I’ll be going crazy by then.

filling in some time before surgery

I’m having surgery next week for Carpal Tunnel.  Already had one hand done now the other.  This should have happened Friday but my Dr got called away on an emergency. So I am supposed to get this done on Tuesday.

I had cut out fabric so when I got the OK to sew, I could sit and not have to use my bandaged hand. But now with this delay, I got one whole quilt top done already.

lLorraine blocks 600
I found this in Quilt World magazine
all the blocks 600
It doesn’t look like much but I love the colors I chose.
finished top 600
Look what a difference it made once I sewed in sashings and cornerstones. This came out to 59 x 59″ A nice size for a lap top. I’ll get it quilted after my surgery.

Tomorrow I’ll be cutting for another project .  I will have it all ready to sew once the Dr says it’s OK .


I started pulling plastic bins from below my sewing table. I’ve been storing some UFO’s in them to do “later”.
I spent the last few months doing charity quilts, some for a children’s home, some for “Quilts for Kids” an organization that gives guilts to sick children in local hospitals and some quilting for battered women and children.
I think 5 twin size quilts and 5 smaller one plus quilting 15 others that guild members made and 10 others for another guild, is enough for a few months.
Tomorrow I head out to retreat. 4 days of nothing but sewing. And lots of great food too. The cook at FFA is outstanding. It is southern fried cooking but still very good. I’ve become used to most southern cooking, fried chichen, collards and other foods we’ve never even heard of up north. After living here in Ga for 19 years I still yearn for northern cooking, but I have found a lot of southern foods that are delicious.
It actually was hard for me to decide which UFO to bring with me, I have so many. I looked thru several plastic bins, some had patterns and fabric but I hadn’t even done any cutting. Others, I started cutting the fabric who knows when but looking thru the bin, I don’t think I’d be able to concentrate enough among 19 ladies, to even get it started.
So what have I decided?
I have 3 steps to a “Quilt of Valor” quilt that is a mystery quilt. A scrap quilt that I started last year at a guild workshop and a batik that was a block swap on one of my yahoo groups last year. I think I’ll start that one first since the blocks are all done, I just have to add sashings and some different color batik fabric to it.
I also am bringing my Kindle and plan on taking some “me” time to get some reading done.
I’ll try to post some photos each day. We are all going to hav a great time.

Getting A Few Things Done

Yeaaaa.  I’m actually getting some sewing done.  Getting a few of my projects worked on. They’ve been sitting here for so long,I almost didn’t know which to start first.
I’ve been sewing my Bonnie Hunter Celtic Solstice blocks,

4 patches 600
4 patches done
60 blocks 600
61 blocks put together 

I’ve got the first 3 rows together, and 2 more on my design wall.  Celtic Solstice 3 rows 600

But I digress.  I got sidetracked over the weekend.  I have a few drawers full of juvenile fabrics and told our “Quilts For Kids” representative that I’d make a few quilts for the kids. So I tore those drawers apart and look what I’ve got so far.

NYGiants 600 NYGiants closup 600

I wonder if the children at our local hospital will want a quilt with N. Y ., Giants on it.  I know we’re in the south here but there’s lots of northerners here too. Maybe it will be one of the first picked…. maybe it will be a reject.   We’ll see…