Finishing 4th

Aloha and Happy Wednesday! Have you all recovered from the time change? Thankfully, here in Hawaii, we don’t have to do that! I’ve appreciated that for the two years we’ve been here. Moving back to the mainland will bring change enough but then we’ll “enjoy” that stupid time change again! 😦

Anyway, things are progressing towards our April 4 house closing. We still haven’t worked out all the logistics with shipping but we are getting closer. One thing we have learned is that crossing the ocean creates an “international” event. Moving over sea and land enters a whole new realm of logistics! More on that as it happens.

As I have done in the past, when a move is about to happen, I start sewing like crazy! Somehow packing finished items feels less weighty than moving boxes of stash fabric. Yesterday, I finished the fourth project from last summer’s retreat.

Jump Rings by MSQC which is in this edition of BLOCK magazine. The Hawaiian fabrics were selected and kitted for the retreat by Vicky’s Fabrics here in Kauai. This was my first time to work with poly-cotton fabric, which is commonly used in Aloha shirts and clothing. It was easy to work with and quilted beautifully as you’ll see.

Making snowballs to form the inner ring…

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Then I attached the matching sides all around to form the ring…forgot to take a photo of that part but you can see the result below. Next, the outer corners are nipped to make the final ring appear.

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Fast forward and the top is made and the quilting is in full swing…

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A close-up of the quilting design…

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And the end result…ready to trim and bind! I am going to call it “Haku Leis” for the head-pieces commonly worn by the bride and her attendants during weddings. Here is a link that explains that a bit more as well as the photo below shows. Aren’t they beautiful?!

Haku lei 1

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Here’s how it looks from the back! I think it is a great way to start Spring! (Apologies to those suffering from the winter storm Stella! My Stella sends her best wishes for a quick thaw!)  😉

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I have a customer’s top in-house to quilt next. If I work really fast, I can get the last two tops I have made quilted before Stella has to be disassembled to move.

Next week, we have these two coming to visit! I can hardly wait to see them again! This Gigi needs to make a baby doll quilt, quick!! 🙂

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Aloha!

Change at the Speed of Life

March is here and with it comes change. For most people, it just means a change in the season…are you slowly thawing out where you live? Are your favorite things starting to bud and bloom? For us, it means another adventure!

Recently, Bonnie Hunter posted this photo on her Quiltville Facebook page…

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Thanks, Bonnie! What a timely phrase! Change is scary but it’s also sometimes just the thing you need to do.

If you have followed this blog for a bit (or know us as friends and family do), you know we have moved a few times in our 36 years of marriage. For the most part, the reasons have been (mostly) economic conditions and/or chasing a dream. Our move to Hawaii in 2015 was a big dream…and guess what!? we sat in the front row and did it!!

But, things in life have a way of changing…not that we WANT them to change, sometimes they just do all by themselves. As much as we would like, we can’t control everything life throws at us.

Yet the things we CAN control do take action. So, most of our friends and family know that we are action-taking types and know when to make things happen.

Moving to Hawaii was a big risk…it would be a 50/50 chance. Should we take it on? We weighed all the pros and cons and took a deep breath, and did it. We knew there would be things we couldn’t control but it was worth a shot…this one chance to live our longtime dream. Reality can be harsh, however and we found we were on the second part of that 50/50 chance…the part that usually stops most folks in their tracks.

So, now what do we do? Where do we go? When do we leave? What’s the plan?

Well, then it’s time to start a new dream!

When we first considered moving to Hawaii back in 2014, Florida was our backup plan. Now its THE plan! And we’ve taken action! Watch out Florida…here we come!

Our beautiful Kauai home is already under contract and we are set to close on April 4! Most of February was spent making it ready to sell and fortunately for us, our buyer was renting across the street! They love our neighborhood and all the upgrades we have done to the house was greatly appreciated. Just this week, Mr. G sold his 1-year old Tacoma pickup in less than 24 hours!

After we close on the house in April and yet another tax season is out of the way, we will take some time to visit Maui and the Big Island…we might not be this close to them ever again…so we are taking advantage of that! Then, we’ll take some time in May to visit our parents as we make our way to Florida.

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We hope to be in the Ft. Myers/Bonita Springs area by June 1st.

Yes, Stella (the longarm quilting machine) will cross the Pacific, again, and I will continue the blog and quilting. I’ve read there are 120 quilt shops in Florida! And, of course, I can still quilt barefoot and get my toes sandy!! Woohoo!!

As Bilbo Baggins said, “I think I’m ready for another adventure!” Let’s go!!

Stay tuned!

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Barefoot Beach!

Quilting inspiration at a theme park?!

Last week was pretty crazy around here! We have been trying to recover from computer issues…my husband has a server that contains all of his important CPA client data as well as our personal information and, in my humble opinion, just as important photos and blogging materials! 😉

He is still having a weird issue with audio coming from the computer without have any applications, browsers or videos open! He and our computer whiz, Phillip, have run various anti-virus scans which aren’t detecting any bugs.  Phillip has never seen, well…heard, of anything like it! Think of a radio with multiple stations vying for the same channel…sometimes we hear music, sometimes bits of commercials and even a television program!

I am learning a new version of Windows(c) as well as reinstalling TweetAdder, Stamps.com and getting used to a much smaller keyboard. Anyways…

I still have to transfer photos from our vacation but domestic diva duties still must be performed and quilt blocks must be sewn! So until I can fully recover let’s discuss a quilt show…of course, that would be the AQS Show in Paducah, KY!!

I am not able to go this year since we have our Hawaii vacation coming up (tough to choose between the two, I know!) but I have friends from Texas going and I can’t wait to hear all about the fun they are going to have!

I have two friends who are semi-finalists in the show! Their quilts are amazing and I hope they let me show them to you even if they don’t win. Here is a hint of what one of the quilts will include. This is from Busch Gardens in Florida. Quilt inspiration can be found just about anywhere!

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Ooh, we HAVE to check this place! Can you see some colorful hexagons?

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Wouldn’t this make a stunning quilt?!

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How about this for a gorgeous quilting design?!

The quilt show in Paducah will have something awesome to see at every turn! It is a quilt show not to be missed!

Click here for more information on the quilt show!

Have you been to it yet? If not, add it to your bucket list! If so, drop me a note and share a favorite memory!

 

 

 

 

Happy Apple Quilt Shop

For our Mother/Daughter trip to Florida, I made the sneaky smart decision to scope out quilt shops in and around the Tampa area! I had a copy of a shop hop route that so helpfully listed the participating shops with directions to their cheery front doors!

One such shop I had found on a previous panic search for more of a particular batik fabric was on the list! I asked my daughter nicely if we could visit at least one quilt shop on our excursion and she obliged. Happy Apple Quilt Shop in Palm Harbor, FL happened to be the one closest to her plan for our day and off we went…what better place to visit on a rainy, gray day?!

The shop was colorful, neatly arranged and the staff was just as nice and happy as the shop name implied! We were welcomed in from the rain and asked where we were from. After our introductions, I explained I had placed an online order and asked one of the owners (Karen) if I could mention the shop in my blog. She graciously agreed and we were allowed to wander the shop in the quiet bliss of having it nearly all to ourselves while snapping a few pictures.

Side note: they send you a FREE fat quarter with an online order over $30! Oh yes, they do…I got mine!! 🙂

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I asked which fabrics they offered if they were asked for something that said “Florida” and here is what they proudly showed us.

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Of course, you know this coral and turquoise group called out to me! But, I showed great restraint and did not buy one fat quarter of it! 🙂

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Ahh, flip flops, sandy beaches and sailboats!

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Fishes, sea turtles and waves…yes, I touched and petted them all for you! 😉

I spied two finished quilts that I knew would find their way onto my list of To-Do. This one with Kaffe Fassett lovelies reminded me of what I must get finished when I got back home. You can see more of what they had in the shop here.

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This one is just so happy and wonky I have to make it…the staff couldn’t find the pattern the day we visited (they were recovering from a quilt show a few days past) but assured me they would find it…and they did! Ahem, I ordered it when I got back home!

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It’s called Helter Skelter by Abbey Lane Quilts and you can find it here. The ladies in the shop selected the fabrics from different makers but it looks completely coordinated in all its scrappiness! I love it and can’t wait to start the hunt for some similar fabrics! Beachy happiness!!

*Sigh*…a fun, happy quilt shop in a sunny, paradise location…what could be a better place to spend a rainy day if you can’t get to the beach, right?!

Thank you Karen and your wonderful staff for this vacation memory!

In case you were wondering we did come back!

But it was a tough day getting on that plane from sunny, warm Tampa to cold, windy Norman!

Sorry I have been so busy the last few days and not blogged about the awesome trip to Florida last week! I promise I have lots of pictures to share but we are in the midst of some temp work and having computer issues that should be resolved soon (fingers crossed!) 🙂

The Mother/Daughter trip to the Tampa area was wonderful even though it started out a bit chilly and rainy. We hit everything on our list none the less and had some wonderful food and met some very nice people! Our condo unit seemed very popular with returning guests from Quebec and Ontario, Canada, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and northern states including Wisconsin, Indiana, New York and Pennsylvania to name a few of the license plates we saw. We met a couple staying three units down from us who had been coming from Canada for many years and usually stay for 3 months! It seems they couldn’t recall anyone from Oklahoma in all the times they had visited Florida!

Here is a tiny glimpse of a few restaurants we enjoyed in Florida!

Bubba Gump Shrimp Co.

Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. at Madeira Beach

Hurricane Restaurant-crab cakes!!

Hurricane Restaurant at Pass-a-Grille – crab cakes!!

Crown Colony Pub @ Busch Gardens

Crown Colony Pub @ Busch Gardens

But of course, the best part were the sunsets we enjoyed on the beach!

Sunset Beach @ sunset

Sunset Beach @ sunset

Dear daughter did allow for one quilt shop visit and I will share that tomorrow!

The first vacation of 2014 was a great adventure and in 4 more weeks we start the second and most special vacation to Hawaii…yea, you know I am counting down the days to get my toes back in the sand! Stay tuned!

 

 

 

We interrupt this blog for Spring Break!

It’s here!  It’s FINALLY here!! SPRING BREAK!!

Mother/Daughter trip to Florida! Whoohoo!

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Madeira Beach…ahhh! moment ahead!

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I don’t know what all we will see or do but we girls are READY! I wish everyone a happy spring break…I’ll be back in a few days with pictures of our adventures! Look out Florida…we are headed your way!!

Click here for info on the Clearwater/St. Petersburg, Florida area!

http://www.visitstpeteclearwater.com/rich-media/videos

 

 

Those Pesky Distractions

Good morning all…is it still chilly or downright cold where you are? It’s chilly here, too…so what’s a girl to do? Go shop for a swimsuit! Since spring break is just a couple of weeks away for my daughter, we HAVE to start getting ready for the beach! Dreaming of putting our toes in warm sand as the sunbeams burn bronze our skin…mmmmm, sounds way better than any chilly day in Oklahoma, right!?

Carillon Beach, FL

Carillon Beach, FL

But in the meanwhile, gotta keep on the New Year’s Resolution goals.  Yesterday, I sewed the binding down on the third quilt for February. There are only 3 days left in the month so this has to get DONE!

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Thanks to my friend Leslie Dziubinski for the awesome quilting on these quilts in February! Aren’t these some terrific Spring colors! This quilt was made from a Moda jelly roll given to me by another quilting friend for my birthday…ahem!…a couple of years ago! It is an easy pattern using the Strip Tube (C) Ruler from Cozy Quilts. I used leftover pieces on the back (come back for the final reveal!)

After getting some great distractions fabric help on Facebook and the Internet, I am back on track of using up stash! I found some gorgeous fabric just calling my name but I will have to resist! Inspiration is so easy to find just with those two “helpers”…right?!

But now it’s off in search for the perfect swimsuit…not to revealing, not too tight, not to matronly, not too…well, you get the idea!

Wish me luck…it’s awfully chilly this time of year.  I hope a sale rack of sweaters doesn’t distract me! 🙂

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