Thursday, June 07, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Block #105 - "Birdhouse"

Block #105 - "Birdhouse"
Started on 8/27/11
Completed on 8/28/11
Technique: Paper Piecing & Applique'

I love this block.  Too fun, too cute, and probably one of my favorites in some ways.

I have two birdhouses in my backyard; both are treasures.  One was made by my husband and kids a few years back with one of our old license plates as the "tin roof".

The other is a treasure of a different kind.  It was made by my Poppa.  He painted a waterfall on it and calls it a bluebird house.  We've had birds nest in it multiple times every year we've lived here since 2007.  They aren't blue but it is so neat listening to the babies and watching all of the activity that comes along with the feathered families.

I keep a running list of items I'd like to buy should we ever make it to Amish country.  I want an Amish made quilt rack.  I'm tempted to add "Duh!" here.  I'd like a large, wooden, Amish made chest / trunk for my quilt room.  (It is a need actually.  I have tons of batting and quilts in progress that need a storage home.)  The third thing on my list is a large, Amish made birdhouse.  I'm thinking one of the "bird palaces" I've seen with multiple openings and levels.  I suppose I wouldn't mind a windmill either.  Now, that would be a smaller, decorative one for my yard.

Perhaps I'm just dreaming but a little dreaming is good for us.

I've finished the quilt I was hired to make.  I've finished two more since then too.  Got another one on the table now that I'm in the middle of quilting.  I took pictures with my phone and haven't uploaded them to my laptop yet.

Life has been taking its toll and I can't believe I went almost a month again without posting.  I will finish this series though.  My husband lost his grandfather on Wednesday.  Truitt Brassette was clearly his engineering inspiration.  He was a sweet man, a loving husband, a good father, and a fun-loving grandfather and great-grandfather.  We'll miss his jovial personality, his smiles, and his hugs.  Rest easy Pa!

Blessings Y'all!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - Block 104 - Pancake Supper

Block # 104 - "Pancake Supper"
Started on 8/25/11
Completed on 9/4/11
Technique: Applique'

This block in repetition would be so great for auction at a pancake supper fundraiser for a church, school, or other non-profit group.  I would enjoy working at a pancake supper or attending one!

In 1979 I started Kindergarten at Kurth Elementary in Lufkin, TX.  I stayed at that school longer than any other school I went to.  I was there through 3rd grade.  One of my favorite things about Kurth was the chili supper fundraisers they had.  They always had the fixin's for Frito pies, corn bread, and moms donated cakes to be served by the slice for dessert.  I'm pretty sure my mom made a cake or two every year.  Thanks Mudder!

Anyone missed me?  I've been on hiatus.  My Granddaddy passed away on April 12, and it really threw me for a loop.  I've also been busy working on a commissioned quilt for my friend Elizabeth.  It is actually almost done.  I have half of the binding left to hand stitch on, the label to attach, and the hanging sleeve to construct and hand stitch on.  I'm closing in.  I will be sure and share pics once it is finished.

By the way, block 105 is one of my favorites!  So be sure to stay tuned!  I'll try not to disappear again for so long.

Blessings y'all!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 103 - "Crazy Patches"

Block # 103 - "Crazy Patches"
Started on 10/14/11
Completed on 10/15/11
Technique: Foundation Pieced

I had never attemped a crazy quilt or patch or block before this quilt. Since this one block I've made several. I have 4 or 5 done right now that will eventually be put together for another top for the ladies at church who quilt.

So I'm on block 103 out of 121. Not much longer and I'll need to start assembling the rows. I believe I have the sashing strips cut already so that's a headstart.

I'll have to get Elizabeth's quilt finished before I can work on anything else. She's been rather patient with me working on it as I can. We have a big Girl Scout event tomorrow, World Thinking Day, so I may not get much, if anything, done on it. Perhaps Sunday will bring some peace and quiet to jump in more. I have 7 blocks done so far so that's a decent little start.

Hope the weather is nice where you are. It is perfectly cool here today with some cloud cover and some sunshine. I love the milder seasons here of Spring and Fall.

Blessings y'all!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 102 - "Pretzels"

Block # 102 - "Pretzels"
Started on 8/25/11
Completed on 9/4/11
Technique: Applique'

So, if you know someone who hearts pretzels, this is the quilt they need! Who'd a thunk it? A Pretzel makes a cute quilt block. If it wasn't an Amish quilt, I would probably embelish with some of the tiny tube shaped beads in a pearlescent white or even the little tiny seed beads (I think they are called).

I've read about the Amish baking their own pretzels. I suppose non-Amish people do that too? But those people all probably actually have a fondness for pretzels. They aren't my favorite. I probably wouldn't go hungry to avoid eating them but I would choose many other things over them.

Now, I do appreciate a pretzel dipped in almond bark or even chocolate. I don't indulge in those too often though. I try to lay off sweets when I can so I don't get too sweet myself.

I actually got some stitching done this weekend. Working on the Toomuchery quilt for Elizabeth. Something tells me it is going to be way too cute and coordinated to call it Toomuchery. Unless we go at the angle of it being just "too much" cuteness.

I'm not sure where the days have been going. Well, I've been sort of sick. I was hoping the doctor would call today with results of my some bloodwork I had last Friday. Didn't hear from them. She is suspecting I have an ulcer or am possibly anemic. My money is on Anemia but ya never know with me. I am rather creative in ailments.

Anyway, today was a good day among some rotten ones lately. I got a lot done and feel sort of caught up! Enchilada Meatballs baking in the oven, boys home soon from pack meeting. Trinity putting her clean laundry away. All is right in my world!


Friday, March 16, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 101 - "Ohio Star"

Block #101 - "Ohio Star"
Started on 9/22/11
Completed on 9/23/11
Technique: Pieced, flying geese

I made some feeble attempts to research what exactly makes the Ohio star the "Ohio" star. While I didn't discover the reasoning I did see that most of these stars are made with quarter square triangles instead of flying geese. As a matter of fact, this star I made resembles more the sawtooth star.

I learned to make the sawtooth star in my early
quilting classes. I made a small, lap quilt for Mark's grandmother with the pattern. This one also has a pieced border made of flying geese. I like the way this one turned out but if I was doing it again, I would make all of the stars the same color or make every one of them different.

It is strange to me how much I like a white background for quilts. I would not be inclined to use a mostly white bed covering because they scare me as far as getting soiled and stained goes. But they do look mighty sharp.

We've had beautiful spring weather this week. I love living here! Four seasons, no tornadoes, very little rain, and the occasional snowfall to thrill the Southern girl who has been transplanted here. What more could you ask for?

We are looking forward to getting the camper opened up and using it soon. We are making plans to "get out there" Memorial Day weekend but it wouldn't hurt my feelings to go sooner!

Happy Weekend to all!

Blessings y'all!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Block # 100 - "Ice Skates"

Block # 100 - "Ice Skates"
Started on 8/25/11
Completed on 9/4/11
Technique: Applique'

Don't fall over in shock! I'm posting again after a lengthy hiatus. Three words. Girl. Scout. Cookies. I have been up to my eyeballs in 'em and am actually not quite done yet. But I can see my way clear to blog for a few moments.

I like this block even though an ice skater I am not. My step-mother Mary took me a few times to the galleria in Houston on weekends I would be with her and my dad. And then I suppose I went a few times in Austin at, was it Northline Mall? I'm not a fan of ice, at least when it comes to my backside landing on it and skidding across it. I don't mind watching others skate ... or fall.

Mark and I went to see Grease on Ice when it came to Monroe, LA. I'm thinking I was preggers with Trinity when that occurred but it may have been before that. Anyway 11 or 12 years ago, we saw Grease on Ice. Being the loyal follower, fan of Grease, it was a big thrill for me!

I finished my charity quilt for the ladies' quilting group at church. I handed it off to Melva last Wednesday. It turned out better than I'd hoped, especially after I added a stop border and a bigger border. There are sawtooth stars in there ... I promise.

Next project is a commissioned quilt for my friend Elizabeth. We bought the fabrics week before last and I got most of the cutting done this past Saturday.

My hubby brought our nice glider chair down from the guest room to our bedroom. Now I have a little space to sit and blog, do devotionals, and other heart happy things I take care of each day. Amazing how little things like that can make such a big difference.

Blessings Y'all!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 99 - "Spider Web"

Block #99 - "Spider Web"
Started on 10/13/11
Completed on 10/13/11
Technique: Paper pieced

The author of the letter that goes with this block talks of using up a lot of her fabric scraps and scraps from others to make this. It is a neat looking block but might be a little too unorganized for my personal taste. I like order in my blocks.

I have a hard time with sampler quilts where each block is a different pattern. The only chance such quilts have with me is if they are done with the same fabrics and colors. If they have that in common I can get passed the random patterns.

I suppose a crazy quilt similar to this one would work if it used a lot of the same colors and then was sashed and bordered with the same fabric.

My charity quilt is almost pieced. I've got two rows that need a handful of blocks pieced together and then those two rows need to be sewn into rows. Then I'll put the last five rows together into the bottom half of the quilt and then finish putting the top together. I may have it done today and would like to take it to the quilters at church tomorrow.

I'm prepared for them to be "concerned" by the design and color placement. It really lacks, um, prettyness. : p Perhaps I'll have a picture to share on tomorrow's blog.

Tomorrow night my friend Elizabeth and I are going to buy the fabrics for a quilt I'm making for her living room wall. The pattern is called "Toomuchery". I'm looking forward to the challenge.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 98 - "Broken Silo"

Block # 98 - "Broken Silo"
Started on 8/26/11
Completed on 9/3/11
Technique: Applique'

I haven't blogged since Tuesday? Where on earth did this week go? Oh, well, I did have a pretty sick little kiddo most of the week. I took him out for a few errands today but I think it was too much too soon. He's feeling bad again tonight.

The letter that goes with this block talks of a broken silo loader and a candymaking frolic. I can totally relate to the latter but not the former. Don't know nothin' 'bout no silos. Candy, on the other hand, is an old friend of mine.

Grandma May always had candy (usually homemade) around when I'd visit. This was especially true around Christmas. I remember coconut candy and fudge. It seems like peanut brittle too.

I got to make candy often with Mudder and Granny Capps because I spent so much more time with them. Mudder made some kind of candy with fried Chinese noodles covered in chocolate or butterscotch. I remember that the best. Granny made fudge, divinity, peanut brittle, and buckeyes. So I guess candy making is a heritage!

I usually only make candy at Christmas. I'm not sure why that it is. Perhaps I'll have to change that. Anyway, I've added a couple of things of my own to my repertoire but try to keep some of the family heirlooms alive as well. I make my own fudge, cream cheese mints, and Martha Washington candy. I continue to make Granny's Buckeyes and they are one of my family's most highly requested items.

I have my charity quilt over halfway pieced together! Actually, half the top is already assembled in rows, with those rows sewn together. A lot of the blocks for the bottom half are pieced but there is still more left of that to do. I sure would like to be done with this thing so I can take it to church on Sunday. If not, at least by the time the quilters get together on Tuesday.

It isn't lovely. I mean, I have definitely seen uglier quilts. But it wouldn't win a beauty contest if there were such a thing for quilts. However, the stars that pop out here and there give it some uniformity and the craziness of the color explosion gives it some personality. Albeit quirky, it has personality none-the-less. I'll post a picture of the top and let you experience it for yourself. lolol

Blessings Y'all!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 97 - "Nine-Patch"

Block #97 - "Nine-Patch"
Started on 9/22/11
Completed on 9/22/11
Technique: Pieced

I love simple blocks like this one. Nice and easy and a great way to use up scraps! I guess I have scrap usage on my mind these days because I finally started cutting scraps to put together a quilt top for the quilter's group at church to use.

I have been trying for months to get to their get togethers and while I haven't given up, I suppose I've gotten discouraged at the prospect of making it. So, I'm going to do what I can from home to participate and help out.

I found a pattern that is heavily scrappy in one of my previous year's quilt calendars. It is called Apple Crisp. I think it looks pretty "Fallish" in the design on the calendar but my colors are so crazy I may not be able to call it Apple Crisp. I may have to call it Motley Crue Crisp or something like that.

I finally finished all of those 12 blocks of the "Be Attitudes" quilt on Friday or Saturday. I even got the blocks all stitched together. I just need to add borders and then mark it for quilting. I'm very pleased with the colors of it. They are bright, as is my norm.

My friend Elizabeth is wanting me to make a quilt for her to hang on the wall of her new house. We've finally settled on a pattern; she and I just need to get together now to pick out and purchase fabrics. I'm looking forward to this challenge. The quilt is called "Toomuchery". The sample shown is indeed TOO MUCH. But she and I are convinced we can tone it down and still make a really lovely quilt.

Better scoot for now! Happy Stitching! Blessings Y'all!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 96 - "Lunch Pail"

Block # 96 - "Lunch Pail"
Started on 8/26/11
Completed on 9/3/11
Technique: Applique'

The letter that goes with this block shows the drastic difference between Amish children and "Englisher" children. In the letter the author says that she gave her children new lunch pails for Christmas. And the children were happy about it. Mine might have, well, thrown them at me. As a child I would not have been pleased to get a lunch pail as a Christmas gift. (Unless it had Scooby Doo or some other favorite character of mine on it, which I'm most certain the Amish children's did not include.)

It is really amazing how children in the same day in age can be so different and pleased in such different ways. Even my two children are different as night and day. Granted they are opposite sexes but jeepers they could not be more different.

Trinity is the first born as am I. She thinks like me. Her brain processes things in the same way. However, she has her Daddy's mild, thoughtful, calm demeanor. She took to reading like a fish to water but was slower to catch on to math and science principles. She has the biggest heart of anyone I've ever met and is one of my favorite people in the whole world.

William is the second born, like his Daddy, but has ended up being the baby of our family, unlike either of his parents. His intellect is all Mark. He is quizzical and sharp. His personality, however, is most like mine. He is reactive, expressive, and a bit high strung. He gets math and science rather effortlessly but is slower to catch on to reading. He is sensitive and when his quick temper gets the best of him you can tell he feels really bad for misbehaving or hurting someone's feelings. I can't imagine not knowing him. I can't wait to see what kind of man he grows into.

The lunch pail pictured on this block reminds me of the silver, metal one that Poppa used to take to work at the paper mill everyday with his lunch. Granny packed it each morning for him and he brought it home with him in the afternoons. What a cool memory ...

All 12 blocks of my "Be Attitudes" quilt are decoratively stitched. I've got to finish pulling the stabilizer off the back and then they'll be ready to piece together to create the quilt top. So glad I've had a little time to stitch this week.

Blessings Y'all!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 95 - "Fence Row"

Block # 95 - "Fence Row"
Started on 9/22/11
Completed on 9/22/11
Technique: Pieced with Half Square Triangles

This little block would make a terrific quilt with several of them sewn together. Perhaps Ms. Rosemary would chime in on whether it would be most proper to make the blocks all the same color or in a variety of colors?

I got a sweet little surprise this afternoon. I was getting out block 10 of 12 of the "Be Attitudes" quilt I've been working on and happened to look ahead at the last two. At some point (long enough ago I'd forgotten) I had already sewn the applique' stitching on block 11 and 12! Woo hoo! That meant I went from having 3 left to stitch to only one, which was the one I was just starting on.

Hopefully tomorrow I will have time to get this last one finished and then I'll be ready to put the top together. I had hoped to go quilt with the ladies at church tomorrow, which I've been wanting to do but not been able to, for several months now. However, Will is seeming sickly and I don't want to get him worse or others sick. Plus, I have some Valentine goodie bags I may end up having to deliver tomorrow too. But I'll get some stitching done one way or the other. I'm giving the kids the day off of their studies but will wait to tell them that in the morning.

I was very saddened by the death of Whitney Houston this weekend. I guess that doesn't have anything to do with my quilt projects, other than I retreat to my sewing room when I'm feeling down. She was one of the first artists that really captured my attention and made me realize music would always be a big part of my life. I am so sad for her daughter and so sad that our world has lost another shining star.

I hope it is comforting to her family and friends that she left such a huge part of herself here with us, for now and for generations to come, with her music and her contribution to the entertainment industry. Rest in peace, Whitney. You made a difference on this earth.

Blessings Y'all!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 94 - "Neighbor's Bonfire"

Block # 94 - "Neighbor's Bonfire"
Started on 8/25/11
Completed on 9/3/11
Technique: Applique'

Another unusual block but one that I really like! This one makes me think of campfires, bonfires, weenie roasts, etc. from my childhood. It also makes me think of my Uncle Dan who is a retired fireman.

Again, in the letter that goes with this block, we see the good, clean fun the Amish teenagers have together during their courting years. It wonders me if teens today still appreciate and participate in such a simple kind of gathering.

So I can see this block making a nice quilt for a fireman or fire station, for a campfire girl or Girl Scout, for avid campers, maybe even for those who really, really like to barbecue.

Got a little bit of stitching done on another one of my "Be Attitudes" quilt blocks yesterday. It was a busy day getting everything ready for date night with my honey. We went to eat at Outback Steakhouse and then to the Avalon Theater for a concert by Jim Brickman. We love him. If we had known about him when we got married, his music would have been all over our wedding and reception. Guess we'll have to shower our anniversaries with it.

Blessings Y'all!

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 93 - "Tumbling Blocks"

Block #93 - "Tumbling Blocks"
Started on 9/21/11
Completed on 9/21/11
Technique: Templates

Oh I love this block. It is the neatest, geometric block to me. I often read of Tumbling Blocks quilts in my Amish books so it was a particular thrill to get to make one!

The writer of the letter that goes with this block talks of thinking of using flannel as the batting in a quilt she and her daughters are working on. I think I used felt once but was not impressed at all with the way the quilt fell and moved. (I used it on a whim as I had a big piece of leftover felt and I needed to practice my machine quilting.)

Another thing I tried was using a soft cotton sheet as the backing of a quilt I made for my cousin Courtney. In addition to being much cheaper than buying backing fabric, there was no large seam on the back and it was super duper soft which I adored.

The more I get into my craft the more little tricks and ideas I come across. All I know is that I derive great satisfaction from making things with my hands that can offer comfort and a big, warm hug that is almost as good as the real thing.

I barely got to stitch yesterday. So, I'm working on block 8 of 12 of the Be Attitudes quilt still.

Blessings Y'all!

Monday, February 06, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 92 - "Storing Eggs"

Block #92 - "Storing Eggs"
Started on 8/26/11
Completed on 8/28/11
Technique: Applique'

Sometimes I have to chuckle at these blocks. I mean, who would just decide to make a quilt block with eggs on it? But then it occurs to me that it actually makes a lot of sense.

Writers write about where they live and things they know. Painters paint about things they love and things they see. Photographers take pictures of things around them that captures their attention. Of course quilters should quilt about what is part of their lives and things they love.

So that presents two questions I'd like to ask of anyone who might read this.

1. Do you know someone this egg block would make a cute quilt for? Perhaps a chicken farmer or a gourmet egg cooker? (Which I suppose would make them an "eggspert". Oh, indulgent bad joke.)

2. What would your life's/love quilt look like?

My quilt would have to include my husband and children, something to represent my faith and love for God, music, reading, the Amish, ocean, mountains, and then an homage to quilting somehow (within the quilt). What a treasure that would be to have and leave as a legacy for future generations. Isn't that a great thing about quilting; that it says, "I was here. I created this. Remember me."

I had miscounted the blocks of my first "Be Attitudes" quilt. There are 12 blocks. So far I have seven of those embroidered. I would like to have those all stitched and the top sewn together by the time I finish the Amish Circle Quilt Project Blog series. That way I can dig in to assembling that quilt.

The 2012 Mystery Quilt will start on March 1. I've got to try to dig up enough money to buy my fabrics before then so I can jump in when it starts. I love doing the mystery quilt each year. This will be my 4th one!

I think I'm going to cease and desist with my prayers at the end of these entries for the most part, now that I am writing my devotional blog. But just know that I strive every day to please our Heavenly Father in all I do.

Blessings Y'all!

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 91 - "Roman Stripes Variation"

Block # 91 - "Roman Stripes Variation"
Started on 9/13/11
Completed on 9/22/11
Technique: Paper Piecing & Pieced

To make this block I paper pieced each of the four striped sections and then I pieced each of the strips together. It was fairly simple even though I wasn't very familiar with the technique.

There is a Roman Stripes quilt in my book of Amish Quilts that I will have to give a try "one day". That may be my next blogging project; working through the Amish Quilts book I have. Some of them look very challenging.

Rosemary Youngs, the author of the book this blog has been based on has started a new organization that will provide blanket quilts to orphans in Africa and other countries. Here is a link to her website with the information:

You don't have to be a quilter to do these blankets she provides the instructions for. If you are interested in making one and need a quilt top, I might be able to hook you up! I would love to know if you decide to help out so let me know.

Father, thank You for continually showing me the way. Your way never leads me wrong.

Blessings Y'all!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 90 - "Missing Puzzle Piece"

Block # 90 - "Missing Puzzle Piece"
Started on 8/25/11
Completed on 8/28/11
Technique: Applique'

This block could be used in so many ways! I made it orange because it was a bright, sunny color. Plus, I had a little orange in a few other blocks and thought this was a good block to add some more.

I love jigsaw puzzles. I even have a program on my computer that lets me work puzzles on my laptop. It can even turn my photos into puzzles. I greatly enjoy this.

I love buying puzzles too. And if I can find a puzzle that is a picture of something I love like quilting, Twilight scenes, or pooches, that is just gravy!

So this block could be duplicated over and over and could make a quilt for a puzzle lover. I would be tempted to iron on photos and turn them into puzzle pieces. You could easily make a one block or four block wall hanging for a game room.

I find it very exciting to brainstorm quilts and quilt projects ideas.

I got another one of my "Be Attitudes" blocks ready to embroider today. I didn't have time to fun stitch because I had patches to sew on to Trinity's Awana shirt and Girl Scout vest.

Father, thank You for the path You are illuminating for me. I love it when You and I are on the same wavelength.

Blessings Y'all!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 89 - "Center Diamond"

Block # 89 - "Center Diamond"
Started on 9/8/11
Completed on 9/8/11
Technique: Paper Pieced

I have to tell you: this quilt has really been a treasure to make and wealth of learning for me. I had never paper pieced or foundation pieced before this and now I have obtained both skills! I taught myself based on tutorials I found online and advice I've read from many experienced quilters. Let me not forget that Rosemary Youngs herself, author of this awesome book, has offered many emails filled with advice and instruction directly to me.

I loved making this block. Paper piecing is so fun and I love how sharp the angles turn out and how crisp the creases and folds end up being. This is a nice looking block.

The letter that went with this block talked of 3 center diamond quilts being made for 3 female family members that were getting married. I thought that was a neat coincidence since I am making 3 "Be Attitudes" quilts right now. One will be for me. Two will be for sale I think. I am hoping to use them to raise money for our family to go on a mission trip within the next year or so. We are looking at possibly going to Guam, although we haven't discussed that with anyone yet.

Once I finish the remaining 4 blocks of the Be Attitudes quilt I am working on now, I am going to try to start adding some of the sashing together for my Amish Circle Quilt. I think I have it all cut already so I should get to just start stitching. It will be fun to do some 1/4" seams for awhile since lately I've been quilting and doing applique'.

I'm going to try to be more constant in my postings. It makes me feel good to be chatting away each day; especially about quilting!

Father, thank You for another day. Thank You for my gifts and talents. Thank You for the people You've placed in my life.

Blessings Y'all!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 88 - "Taffy Pull"

Block # 88 - "Taffy Pull"
Started on 7/13/11
Completed on 8/28/11
Technique: Applique'

I am not a fan of taffy, although I can't say I've ever had the opportunity to taste homemade taffy. Having said that, this sure is a cute little block!

The kids and I made white chocolate dipped pretzel sticks this afternoon. By the time we were done we had dipped a few Thin Mints, Trefoils, and I think a Dulce De Leche or two. (Their Daddy got in on the dipping action too.) Anyway, who knew you could improve Girl Scout cookies?

On the quilting front, I did finally finish quilting my I Believe Christmas quilt last week as well as got the binding machine stitched on! Since then I've gotten the applique' embroidery stitches done on 5 blocks of one of the three Be Attitudes quilts I have in the works. I am hoping to sell two of these. They are SO CUTE!

It is amazing how far a little fun time can go toward warm fuzzies!

On another happy note, I held a Bunco game for ladies at church on Friday night and ended up with 27 women attending. The cherry on top was that we had an age range of 13 to 82. It was so much fun!

Father, I thank You and praise You for the changes You are making in my heart and mind. It is all You; and it is all for You.

Blessings Y'all!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - # 87 - "Lady of the Lake"

Block #87 - "Lady of the Lake"
Started on 9/7/11
Completed on 9/8/11
Technique: Pieced - Half Square Triangles

Something about the name of this block makes me believe it should be in blues and aquas; you know the color of water. But no, I made it in pinks. That's how it was in the book and I think it is pretty even though it doesn't suggest a body of water to me at all.

I feel the crankiness bubbling up in me. I haven't been in my quilt room in a couple of weeks and it makes me grumpy. The last time I went in I found myself getting quite irritated because during the 20 minutes I was in there, I had a minimum of 5 interruptions. That is so discouraging to me. I really don't ask for much time to myself. I don't mean to get resentful about it but to be perfectly honest, I do.

I love my children. Dearly. And I love my husband. I know I have the best one ever. These people are world, my heartbeat, my worldly joy. I just need a little bit for me every once in awhile and I haven't been getting it.

Right now Girl Scout Cookie Season is upon us. I am so over it. And it just started two days ago. I know someday I'll have way more time on my hands than I'll know what to do with. I just don't take comfort in that on days like today when my time is not my own.

Hopefully this doesn't sound as bad as I think it does. I can only hope everyone goes through moments like this. Perhaps venting will make me feel a little better. I know stitching a little sure would.

Father, ease this restlessness in me. Let me focus on You and others and not myself. I know, You know the plans You have for me. Help me conform to that plan.

Blessings Y'all!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - #86 - "Cornshucking Event"

Block # 86 - "Cornshucking Event"
Started on 7/13/11
Completed on 8/28/11
Technique: Applique'

Don't fall over from shock. I'm back. For now. What a difficult time I have had getting back to my blog. The last week and a half has just flown by and I'm not sure I could even innumerate what all I've done!

So, on to the task and topic at hand. Here is the next block of my awesome Amish Quilt. It is kind of funny to make a corn cob on a quilt block. But don't ya know it sure fits in on this quilt! I am thinking that when I quilt it I will make tiny circles on the yellow part for kernels and lines for veins on the leaves.

A cornshucking event, as I understand it, is generally held for the Amish teens to gather and socialize. The boys choose a girl and the pair begins shucking corn rather quickly. I'm not sure if they give a prize to the fastest couple but I feel certain, though humility is stressed, they at least get bragging rights.

One book I read several months ago suggested that an ear of corn was colored red. The couple to find that got a special prize such as a pie or other baked item I believe.

I know I'm old fashioned and probably not the coolest kid on the block, but this sounds so fun to me. It sounds like pure, unadulterated, all out fun. How does someone like me, living in the technologically savvy world I live in, with more concrete around me than trees give my children that kind of experience? How can I teach them in the "modern-ness" of today how easy it can be to have pure and simple, clean, old time fun?

I don't think I've had a chance to work on my "I Believe" quilt since I last posted. I have about half of the large outer border left to quilt still. My friend Elizabeth has asked me to make a quilt to hang in her new home. She's currently scouring websites and magazines for a pattern she likes.

Hey ... if you ever get bored, check out my new blog. It probably won't be every day either but it is a spiritual / devotional blog that will just share notes I make during my daily devotions. You may find "A Patchwork Heart" at:

Father, may I continue to seek peace in Your Presence. May You deliver me from the strongholds that are weighing me down. Bless the efforts I'm making in Your name. Thank You for the life You have blessed me with.

Blessings Y'all!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Piece of Peace - Day 10

Decluttering Project ...

Sorry so late ... the day got away from me!


15 minutes of clearing out your hot spot

Mine is coming right along! I think I might get that one area finished tomorrow! Don't worry, I'll share a picture!

On a side note our monthly recycling pick-up was today. The stacks and line of STUFF ran the length of our driveway. Woo hoo! Stuff leaving my house to never be heard from or seen again. And our trash can was very full today too!

Day 12 of 100 - 30 Minutes of Moving Challenge

I'm still moving! When your 7 year old is impressed with your soccer skills on the Wii, it can really boost your ego. This is making me want to get back to playing volleyball, although I'm not sure how that would work as an adult. I think the parks and rec department has adult volleyball. I loved playing so much. I wish Trinity was interested in checking it out.

God's Words of Wisdom:
"Worry takes away your joy, but a kind word makes you happy." - Proverbs 12:24 (ERV)

Kind words cost nothing. Share one as soon as you can!

Blessings Y'all!

Amish Circle Quilt Project - #85 - "Star in a Star"

Block #85 - "Star in a Star"
Started on 9/13/11
Completed on 9/20/11
Technique: Pieced (Flying geese)

I love this block. More than anything this block is significant in its meaning as told in the letter that goes with it in the book. I'm feeling anxious even as I begin to write about it.

In this block, the outer star represents the writer's husband and the inner star represents the writer's son. Both were killed when an automobile crashed into the buggy they were driving. This left her a young widow with two small children.

After reading this letter again this morning before I began writing, I was struck by how it stopped me in my proverbial tracks. I think losing my immediate family members is my worst nightmare but also an extreme fear of mine.

I don't wake up shaking at night from dreams with someone chasing me wielding and axe or a chainsaw. I don't wake up with tears on my cheeks from a dream in which someone is mistreating me. I am not shaken by dreams of snakes and falls from a lofy locale, or wild animals wanting to feast on me.

The dreams of night that truly haunt my days and shake me to the core are the ones in which my precious husband or children are hurt, taken from me or have left my life for one reason are another. Talk about abandonment issues ... I guess they plague me in a big way.

My head tells me that if I lost my husband I could find the strength to move on. My soul tells me that if the worst happened I could trust in God to see me through. My heart? Well, my patchwork heart tells me that it might just be broken beyond repair and I'm not sure I could find my way back to a real life without my amazing love beside me.

When I think about losing a member of my family, that's when I wonder if I really have the faith I usually think I do. I don't want to claim to be a woman of faith, at least not too much faith, because I am quite uncomfortable with that claim being tested in too big of a way. I guess that's kind of ridiculous to some of you, but I have come to fully understand this about myself. I'm not sure exactly what it means. I'm not sure how to fix it or that it needs to be fixed at all.

I'm an imperfect human. Point of fact, being imperfect is actually what makes me so human. I'm pretty good at being human.

That's all for now. I can't dwell on this topic very long or it will mess with my messed up head even more.

Father, today I thank You and praise You for the people You have blessed my life with. Thank You for leading me to Mark. Thank You for Trinity and William. Nothing else in life is as sweet as the gift that is these three!

Blessings Y'all!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Piece of Peace - Day 9

Decluttering Project:

15 minutes of decluttering on your hotspot

Mine is coming along. Hoping it will be a historical figure come this weekend. I'm going to post a photo after I get it all done.

Day 11 of 100 of 30 Minutes of Moving Challenge

I'm enjoying the "challenge" of it I think. And I'm kicking butt and taking names on the Wii. I keep moving higher and higher in the rankings and the kids aren't laughing at me near as much as they did 11 days ago. lol

God's Words to Consider:
"Whatever your hands find to do, do it with all your might." - Ecclesiastes 9:10

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - #84 - "Clean-Up"

Block # 84 - "Clean-Up"
Started on 8/26/11
Completed on 8/28/11
Technique: Applique'

I like this block a lot! It would be great for a quilt for a professional painter or maybe even for someone who like to paint as a craft or hobby. Pretty neat I think.

The author of the letter that goes with this block talks of a community gathering to clean up the school and get it ready for the children to return in the fall. Isn't that a fantastic thing about the Amish? They do so much together as a community!

I feel more at home in Grand Junction than I have felt anywhere I have lived in a very long time. I felt that way in Lufkin, TX, I felt that way for the most part in Round Rock, TX. I felt that way in Lake Charles, LA. I love it here so much though that it would be hard to recover should we have to move at some point.

I haven't been able to quilt for the last 3 days. I miss my room ... going in there that is. I have one in particular that I need to hand stitch the binding on and I have a deadline for myself for that one. (February 15)

Well, just a regular, nutty day at the Brassette home. Nothing exciting to report.

Blessings Y'all!

Piece of Peace - Day 8

Decluttering Project:


15 minutes of work on a hot spot. I had a little more time on mine yesterday. It sort of looks better. I don't know. I guess you can't really tell. Well, you can't tell; but I suppose I can. I about to go against everything I know and believe in this world and share the picture with you. They say a picture is worth a thousand words. I hope this "hot spot" picture will make all of you feel very good about yourself and your own hot spots.
Now it is your turn, if you dare. I'd like you to email me a picture of the hot spot you are working on this week. I would like to post the pics on my blog here, but only with your permission and without your name attached! So tell me if I can post it when you email it to me.


Day 10 of 100 - 30 minutes of moving challenge

Yesterday and today I did a little more than 30 minutes of Wii Fit. I'm actually climbing the ladder of success on some of those! How are you moving? If you a stair, up and down one step reps will tone your booty ... or reduce it ... whichever you are in need of.

Words of Wisdom to Consider:
"Never underestimate your power to change yourself!" - H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Sorry I was so late posting today. I had a lot going on!

Blessings Y'all!

Monday, January 09, 2012

Piece of Peace - Day 7

Decluttering Project:


Confession time. I have a load of stuff on the floor on my side of the bed in our bedroom. The busier I get the more this pile spreads. It is where I drop things when I work on projects in bed at night. It is where things land that I need to do. This pile drives me crazy. I get it cleared up and then it gathers strength and reappears. This is, I guess, what FLYLady would call a hot spot.

My goal for this week is to tackle this hot spot for 15 minutes a day. I challenge you to find an area that needs your attention and do the same.

Day 9 of 100 - 30 Minutes of Moving Challenge

How is it going? Did you move over the weekend? I moved on Sat. However, I did not yesterday. I felt bad and stayed in bed most of the day and in my pj's to boot. It has really messed with my head now. For some reason I think it will be hard to keep going but I'm not one to give up. So later this afternoon I will move somehow, some way.

God's Word to Consider:
"Take therefore no thought for the morrow; for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." - Matthew 6:34

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - #83 - "Irish Chain"

Block # 83 - "Irish Chain"
Started on 9/5/11
Completed on 9/5/11
Technique: Pieced

The author of the letter that goes with this block talks of going to a quilting frolic to make a quilt for an upcoming school auction. It brought to mind the group of ladies at my church that do quilting together as a ministry. I have been wanting to join them for a few months now but have not made it yet because of travel, sick kids, and then holiday scheduling too. I think they are meeting next Tuesday so if I can get the kids' schoolwork organized and ready for them to work independently that morning, I will try to go.

All nine blocks of my "I Believe" Christmas quilt are now quilted. The inner border and the second border are both quilted as well as the "title block" at the top. That just leaves the larger outer border and I'll be ready to machine stitch on the binding. It feels good to be getting that booger finished after all these months.

We start up our homeschooling again on Monday and I must confess I'm not quite ready to hit it again. I've sure enjoyed our time off this last month. I've been decluttering the house and also working my way through the 100 Days of Moving Challenge. I'm in a good groove with my daily devotions and am feeling peaceful in general. Nothing like a little time with two griping children not wanting to hear the word math or phonics to send peace packing.

I've got a Ladies' Bunco night planned at church on January 27 and I'm hoping it will be well received. It will be nice to have a play date with my sisters in Christ.

I better get moving ... literally. Got my 30 minutes left to do yet.

Father, strengthen my resolve to keep on making our home and my life more peaceful. Remind me that you alone are the source of that peace.

Blessings Y'all!

Friday, January 06, 2012

Piece of Peace - Day 6

Decluttering Project:

Today I am delivering items to donate to the library. I also spontaneously cleaned off two shelves in my fridge. Per FLYLady, I cleared out and shined my sink last night. Nothing in it yet! Check out for a great home maintenance program.

Have a shelf or two to clear? Get the sink empty. You'll be so happy to start your weekend without dishes staring at you!

Day 6 of 100 - 30 Minutes of Moving Challenge

Yesterday I did all 30 minutes on the Wii. I felt a little guilty at first because it is so fun. (Didn't feel like it should count or something!) But my goodness it gets my blood pumping and my heart pounding! I am loving the Obstacle Course and the Table Tilt. There's another one with bumping your hips around and adding numbers. I use that one in between the more aerobic activities.

Words to Consider:
"You must be doers of the Word, and not only hearers who mislead themselves."
- James 1:22

I may not post "missions" this weekend. But rest assured I'll be moving. Is anyone out there? Anyone working on this with me still??

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Piece of Peace - Day 6

Decluttering Project:

Pick a kitchen drawer and dump it out. Toss, toss, toss. Unused things, trash (my kids leave gum wrappers), duplicates, etc. Trash it or put it in your give away bin.

Is your give away bin getting full yet? Put everything in it in a bag and put that in your car to drop off at Goodwill or charity of your choice ASAP.

What did you get rid of yesterday? Yesterday I cleared out 7 VHS tapes, 5 dvds, 3 adult books, and 5 children's books. I also got declutter happy and cleared out and reorganized my pantry. I threw out so much that I felt guilty for the waste. However, it isn't cluttering my kitchen anymore so I'm going to try to let that go!

Day 5 of 100 - 30 minutes of moving challenge

Yesterday I did 23 minutes of Wii and then walked another 10 minutes on the treadmill. (I will be starting and ending my walking with the song "Do Everything" by Steven Curtis Chapman from now on.)

Another tool my husband has turned me on to for getting healthy is:

If you sign up, befriend me. My name on there is Toppooch. I have found it helps keep me honest with my calorie intake. I also feel good when I can record my minutes of moving on there. Would love to have some more buddies!

Words to Consider:
"If you are too busy to pray, you are busier than God wants you to be." - Author Unknown

Keep the Lord close in your quest to declutter; home or body you need His support and endorsement.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Piece of Peace - Day 5

Decluttering Project ...

Today find 10 pieces of media to get rid of. DVD's, CD's, VHS tapes, cassette tapes ... (I know some of you still have them) and we'll even throw books in here. Let me know what you are giving away. I think I already have 3 or 4 VHS tapes in a bag for donating to the library.

Day 4 of 100 - 30 Minutes of Moving Challenge

Yesterday I did 27 minutes on Wii Fit. (I made it up a level or two on the obstacle course and am getting good at one of the balancing ones. ) I spent 5 minutes jumping on the trampoline the kids got for Christmas. My goodness that's fun! It kinda hurt my old spine though. Gonna have to wait a little while before I try that again.

God's Word to Consider:
"I will walk in freedom, for I have devoted myself to Your commandments."
- Psalm 119:45

Check out my Bulletin Board tab. I have a good sized bulletin board hanging in front of my treadmill in the office. (Part of why I started with the office decluttering was so I could get to the treadmill easier.) Anyway, by the time I read through my whole bulletin board and reflect on the messages there, I've easily walked 10 to 15 minutes. Helps the time go by and it encourages me to carry on. Take a look at the messages I have so far!

Blessings Y'all!

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Piece of Peace - Day 4

Decluttering Project - Day 4

Home Office / Desk Zone
- Give away or throw away 10 items from anywhere in your home office area. This can come from drawers, cabinets, filing cabinets, desktop ... send it packing!

Foyer / Front Porch Zone
- Anything in the entry way of your home that doesn't belong there? Outer wear on the floor? Boots? Packages? Remaining Christmas decorations? If you have nothing to put away or toss, take a moment and run the vacuum or a broom across the entry way!

Day 3 of 100 - 30 minutes of moving

Yesterday I spent 32 minutes seriously moving on Wii Fit. I'm finding games engage me and make the "task" more fun.

I encourage you to try, as you move today, to consider that what you are doing is to glorify God. After all, you are his work of art. Taking care of your body brings glory to Him and it can actually be a form of worship! Commit your guardianship to the Father!

God's Word to Consider:
"And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice - the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him!" - Romans 12:1

Monday, January 02, 2012

Amish Circle Quilt Project - #82 - "Corner Ball"

Block # 82 - "Corner Ball"
Started on 7/13/11
Completed on 8/28/11
Technique: Applique'

The letter with this block talks about the boys playing this game called corner ball. I don't know that I have any experience to draw on to talk about the game. I will, however, recall great memories of playing dodge ball.

I hear rumors that kids aren't allowed to play dodge ball at school anymore. That's unfortunate. I loved dodge ball days in P.E. I was pretty athletic in school though you might not know that to see me now. I was good at dodge ball. I was fast and somewhat agile. I was careful in my throwing at others. And luckily I wasn't one of the last ones chosen each time. I do feel sorry for kids that the choosing process traumatized.

It stinks that kids played too rough to be allowed to continue the tradition of dodge ball. It makes me sad that a childhood game turned into something children feared and others abused.

For the sake of an analogy I suppose Satan could be considered a master dodge ball enthusiast. "There's one I haven't smacked lately." "Oooh, I could take that one out." "Let me see how many of these 'pawns' I can bring to their knees."

Thankfully we have the ultimate dodger of dodge balls on our side. Our protector, defender, encourager is He. And it is as if He has picked each of us first! First round draft picks we are in His eyes.

Father, thank You, for the hits You take and have taken on our behalf. Help us believe that we are indeed worthy in Your eyes.

Blessings Y'all!

Piece of Peace - Day 3

Day 3 of the Decluttering Project:


Desk or Home Office – Clear 5 items from the floor or desktop

Entry Way / Porch - Anything need to be put away from your front porch? Don't ask me how I know this happens. I did live in Arkansas for a few too many years. : )

Can you share a couple of things you've tossed or are giving away? I tossed about 6 ornament globes, several funky bows, an extinct advent calendar and a ton of wadded up gift tissue paper ... what a weird thing to have taking up space!

I tossed several magazines and a host of papers into the recycling bin. (They are gonna flip on next collection day.)

Body: Day 2 of 100 – Move for 30 minutes

Click on my "Moving Tunes" tab for some suggestions on music to listen to that might help get you moving! I would love to hear your suggestions too.

(Are you rewarding yourself with a sticker or a star on your calendar???)

I played on Wii Fit for awhile and danced my way to 30 minutes on Sunday. Not bad for a woman who started the day with a migraine!

God’s Word to consider:

“It shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.” - Isaiah 65:24

2012 has so much promise! Less junk in our homes and less junk on our thighs! Woooo Hooooo! I implore you to seek counsel with the Great Counselor before going any further on this journey with me.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Piece of Peace - Day 2

Day 2 of Decluttering Project:


Desk or Home Office

– Find 5 things to give away, 5 to throw away and put away 5 things as well. ( Throwing away all 15 items is also acceptable!) Just get it out of there. FLYLady says, "You can't organize clutter; you simply have to get rid of it."

(Do this quickly, say within 5 to 10 minutes.)


Day 1 of 100 - Move for 30 minutes

(I've got 15 minutes done. Gonna dance as I pack up Christmas decorations. Will be at least another 15!)

God’s Word to consider:

“Why do you continue to invite punishment? Must you rebel forever? Your head is injured, and your heart is sick.” – Isaiah 1:5

Blessings Y'all!