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Friday, November 26, 2010


It's the day after Thanksgiving, when large retailers with a penchant for falling prices and smiley faces would have us up before the crack of dawn enticed by sales on just about everything.  It's outrageous encouragement to buy more stuff, perhaps using a credit card, in the hopes that it makes us happy.  Here's an interesting link about The Story of Stuff, something worth viewing before heading out to the store:

I think about the things that I either use all the time or enjoy having or using very much - things I'd really miss if I didn't have them - things that would affect how I live, how I enjoy life.  Stuff doesn't make me happy.  What I do with stuff, how I share it and use it may make me happy and it usually involves  action on my part or interaction with others.  My trusty little 1944 Singer Featherweight sewing machine brings me much enjoyment.  It is even more enjoyable to use when I'm working with friends. I appreciate the design and simplicity of it, the sound it makes, it's consistently solid stitch, it's compact but powerful motor and the fact that I can maintain and repair it.

Quilting is seldom about the quilt itself.  It's about the creative process and ultimately the quilt's usefulness; as a gift on a special occasion, to bring comfort, as a gesture of appreciation, caring and love, or as a piece of art.  Most often, the value of a quilt to the maker is intrinsic. Hopefully, the recipient of a quilt understands the love that goes into the making of it; each stitch, each choice, each hour of work, and receives the full intended benefit. 

Here are some pictures of a quilt made for Kelly's professor at UNH, Dr. Jo Daniel, who is expecting a baby in December.   We wish her and her family much joy and thank her for her commitment to her students.

In the process of quilting.  1920's reproduction fabrics.

Kelly and the finished baby quilt.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Arranging Blocks - Part II

On Nov. 2, I posted pictures of different arrangements of these half square triangle blocks.  This past weekend I picked the project back up and decided to finish up the top by adding a few more rows and a border incorporating the remaining blocks.  This is the border.

And here is the finished top.
Next, to find time to quilt and bind it before Christmas!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Giving Thanks

Friends of mine believe that Christmastime brings out the best in people.  It didn't seem that way to me until I decided to genuinely look for little kindnesses, acts of selflessness, and distinct moments of peace - to try to see what they see.  When I paid attention and took notice, I did see things differently.   What a good way to spend time; looking for  and finding joy and goodness, surrounding ourselves with wonderous moments of peace and being grateful. My thanks to Tim and Gina for sharing their views on this season and for so much more.  

Now, they also start listening to the Christmas channel on the radio about this time of year and that is not a trait that I'll follow any time soon!

So here are just a few of the things that I am particularly grateful for;

Friends who show us possibilities and encourage us along the way.

Every New England season that changes our environment in lovely ways.

Laughter, friendship, kinship.

Wonderful people; friends and family.

Lifelong friends, through the years, through each stage of life.

Creativity, shared interests, trusting friendships.


Great times, great places, great people, great memories!

Quilting as a creative outlet, great fabrics, and the tactile satisfaction of making something.

Wherever you are, whomever you are with, whatever your circumstances, I hope you experience gratitude this season. It's good for the soul.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Arranging Blocks

It is amazing how the same simple blocks can be set in different ways to achieve very different effects. Our minds can be similar in that way. A slightly different attitude can contribute to a very different effect under similar circumstances.  A slightly different approach can make all the difference in the world. 

Flying Geese  
Nine Patch

I'll post the final arrangement in a while, but it is not either of the settings in these pictures.

A change of scenery can also help refresh the mind and senses and inspire creativity.  Maine has a way of doing all that for me. 

The spillway on Little River in East Boothbay, Maine

September on Little River after all the summer folks have gone home.

The view from Quilt Divas parking lot in Rockland, Maine