Tuesday, 31 October 2006

Woo Hoo!

Hey girls take a look at this.

Quilting Meme

Thanks again to Shelina. Being a relatively new quilter I won't have done a lot on this list, but it gives me some goals to work to (and we all know about me and goals don't we! LOL) Have You Ever? 1. Taken a quilting class 2. Paper pieced 3. Hand quilted 4. Hand pieced 5. Created your own pattern 6. Published a pattern in a magazine or book 7. Gone on a quilting retreat 8. Gone to a quilting convention 9. Met someone who wrote a quilting book 10 combined your quilting with some other craft 11. Done any three dimensional quilting - like fabric origami 12. Made something using Thimbleberries fabric 13. Made something using batiks 14. Dyed your own fabric 15. Made a landscape hanging 16 Made a New York Beauty quilt 17 Made a baby quilt 18 Made a wall hanging 19 Made a journal quilt 20 Submitted your journal quilt for viewing 21 Made a fabric postcard 22 Made a artistic trading card (ATC) 23 Exchanged artistic trading cards 24. Mailed your own postcard 25. Made a lap quilt 26 Made a twin size quilt 27 Made a full size quilt 28 Made a queen size quilt 29 Made a king size quilt 30 Donated a quilt to charity (Does Qs 4 L count?) 31 Sent a quilt out to a quilter 32 Thrown away a UFO 33 Given away a UFO 34 Cut up a UFO and made something else with it 35 Ripped fabric instead of cutting it 36 Made a quilt exactly like the pattern, with no changes whatsoever 37 Done any Sashiko 38 Quilted your own quilt 39 Did free motion quilting 40 Put any embroidery or beads on your quilt 41 Given away your quilt to a stranger 42 Swapped fabric 43 swapped blocks 44 participated in a round robin 45 participated in an ostritch round robin 46 kept a journal about your quilting 47 written a letter to someone who made an antique quilt 49 kept a blog about your quilting 50 participated in a gift exchange 51 sent a quilting random act of kindness 52 joined a newsgroup about quilting 53 made a quilt using a pattern from quilterscache 54 joined an online block of the month 55 made a block of the month quilt 56 subscribed to a fabric of the month club 57 bought fabric at an online store 58 bought fabric from ebay 59 own more than one sewing machine 60 have a room dedicated solely to sewing 61 hide a fabric purchase 62 finished making a holiday gift before July 63 spent more than $200 in one quilt shopping trip 64 made a quilt using a book from the library 65 worked with someone else to make a quilt 66. joined a quilt guild 67 become president of a quilt guild 68 taught a quilting class 69 helped someone else get the quilting bug 70 taught a child to sew 71 made a Dear Jane block 72 Made a miniature quilt 73 watch QNN - quilters news network 73 subscribe to a quilting magazine from your own country 74 subscribe to a quilting magazine from another country 75 buy fabric from another country 76 swapped completed quilts with someone else 77 asked for quilting help online 78 gone to a quilt shop to ask for quilting help 79 bought fabric at a local quilt shop 80 traveled more than 100 miles to go to a quilt shop 81 used nontraditional fabric for a quilt - something other than cotton or flannel 82 made a quilt using instructions given to you on a blog 83 make comments on someone's quilting blog 84 meet a quilter in person after only having talked online 85 had a quilting retreat in your home 86 own quilting software 87 made a quilt you designed on your quilting software 88 done any quilt research - history, interviewing quilters, etc. 89 had any quilt related subject published anywhere 90 donated a quilt to a museum 91 bought a quilt from a thrift store 92 made a quilt using fabric from a thrift store 93 made a quilt using photos 94 made a pastel quilt 95 made a quilt using brights 96 made a quilt using ethnic fabric from another country - African, Asian, etc. 97 made a quilt using leftover blocks from other quilts 98 had your quilt in a magazine, newspaper, newsletter, TV, etc. 99. submitted your quilt to a quilt show 100. won any ribbons with your quilts 101 had more finished quilts than UFOs 102 made a quilt using reproduction fabrics 103 took a break from quilting that was longer than a year 104 made money with your quilting 105 had a job in the fabric / quilting industry

October Goals

What did I achieve? Not a lot! Ox and Xs got finished and is now keeping its recipient warm. I started my Family quilt and am about 1/4 of the way through quilting it. BTW problem! One of the seams has split. Can I use webbing to close it up again? I suppose getting "my corner" sorted out was something. Anyway, one item crossed off, one job nearly done and I'm going to start cutting Sunburst soon and piecing so that I can take it to the UK with me for quilting. Still no joy with a long arm quilting machine, but I have a cunning plan *wink*
And this is our view from the balcony and kitchen/lounge windows. Taken, I think, one September a few years ago, the Walnut tree to the left is no more - it got blown down 3 years ago. I will post some more photos at some point of the same view in different seasons.

Monday, 30 October 2006

Dead End Day!

No photos, hardly any quilting, haven't been myself since the clocks went back (it always hits me in the solar plexus, whether it be backwards or forwards). Chores piling up, Halloween supper to go to tomorrow evening and can't motivate myself for it. Great friend coming to stay with 3 kids on Wednesday through to Sunday so need to get going and get something achieved, even it is just cleaning out the bedrooms and making the beds. It is a beautiful, beautiful day here today and feels like Spring. I can't believe that it is the 30th October and yet the long term forecast is gloomy from Wednesday onwards - huge drop in temperature and they are threatening the first frosts. We get snow - sometimes a couple of inches - but it only last 48 hours. However, we do get very severe frosts. Some days the temperature doesn't rise about 0 degrees C, but those days, although cold, are sunny with clear blue skies. Those are the days when I *Will* sit out on the balcony in a fleece and hand quilt. I will I will! Thanks for all your comments and Susan - no I haven't found one!

Friday, 27 October 2006

Conversions and Translations

On my hunt for someone relatively close by with a long arm quilter who is prepared to quilt the Leukaemia quilts for me, I found this web site. Thanks Pippa for pointing me in that direction. I then found 2 really useful pages on that site. This one and this one.

Look what arrived in the post just now

Talk about wow factor! These are stunning!

Thursday, 26 October 2006

My Little Corner

Well here we are. Nearly sorted, but I thought I would introduce you to "my space".
My sewing table which was the dining table in a previous life, bookshelf holding "favourite books" and various odds and ends stuffed in and on the shelves. "Sunburst" material waiting to be cut (yes!) and that bluey tub thing is my new scrap bin. Boxes bottom left behind the table leg contain "the stash" which is threatening to take over the room! The white board to the left of the bookcase is a temporary design wall (piece of formica work top). As that wall is the "chimney" I am going to have to rethink what I was going to do. DH says he can't drill into it so back to the drawing board. In the meantime, the old work top will suffice. And then if you turn to the left you will see my desk, which, being me, is full of junk. Believe it or not I know where everything is so no one is allowed to touch it. Next purchase is an office "swivel chair".
So now you know where I sit when I am chatting to you all.

Wednesday, 25 October 2006

Busy Busy Busy

Reading Nancy's post about Bloglines and how long it takes to read through everyone's Blog made me realise that I haven't posted, although I have been reading and leaving a trail of comments around the world! Anyway, been busy, busy, busy. Creating a sewing/computer corner in the bedroom with a design wall (yes!). Have just to do a spot of furniture moving now and then all will be revealed. In the meantime, these are pictures of "my baby" - Citronnier Quatre Saisons. Bought it about 7 years ago as a "welcome to France" pressie to myself and it has grown and grown, survived 2 or 3 pretty horrific winters (with temps downto -12 at night), has lost its leaves at least twice, but it struggles on. I do bring it in just before the first frost (next month - brrrr). wrap it up in winter fleece and bubble wrap and keep an eye on it during the winter months. It hibernates in the "laundry room"! Before I sign off for the day, can I ask you to send a quilter's hug to my fellow Crafter and Francophile, Vivi, who is going through a pretty rough time at the moment.

Monday, 23 October 2006

Narrow Escape

Just had to share this. Took Alex to the bus this morning, with Magic the cat in tow, as is normal. She (Magic) has been very skittish lately and a bit of a disobedient madam which is very unlike her. Anyway, she flatly refused to stand by the side of the road with us and sat slap bang in the middle of the road. Along comes car going very fast. Magic runs to the verge on the opposite side of the road to us, decides she is on the wrong side and starts to run back to us, gets dazzled by car headlights and runs back to the verge, very nearly loosing her life in the process. The driver must have heard Alex and I screaming and shouting as he slowed right down. Magic is banned from the "bus walk" from now on!

Thursday, 19 October 2006

Just to Say .....

I'm going on a computer/blog diet. I desperately need to get chores/housework/gardening done and I can't if I'm sitting here reading about all of you lot. Alex breaks up for Toussaint next Wednesday lunchtime and we need to have some mother/daughter time together. In order to achieve this I've got to get caught up on all sorts of stuff. A +

French Carrier Bags and "The Quilts"

Right girls! I am at long last getting my act together on this. If you want a French "recyclable" carrier bag, whether it be like Fiona's Super U bag (if I can find it) or just one in bright sunny colours, then can you please let me know asap. I am aiming to buy these and get them in the post next week. As for the Quilts, I am hoping to book Sue for one day next week (we are meeting up tomorrow with Jennifer for a crafty shopping day *vbs*) to get all the blocks out and decide what is going to go where. I am still waiting for a few more. Don't worry if you have promised one but haven't started yet. I have more than enough to be going on with for the moment and making up quilts will keep me occupied during the long cold months of January and February. In the meantime, I think I might get started with some hearts and the cat and make up a baby quilt.

Wednesday, 18 October 2006

Botham Walk for Leukaemia Research and Teenage Cancer Trust

Sophie has just sent me some photos of her and Floyd's meet up with Ian Botham in Glasgow at the end of his Beefy Bowls Out Teenage Cancer charity walk, details of which can be viewed here. I thought you would like to see an up to date photo of Floyd/Matt talking to Ian Botham.

Hummm - but I also like Autumn

Suze says she is a Spring girl too.
You Belong in Spring
Optimistic, lively, and almost always happy with the world... You can truly appreciate the blooming nature of spring. Whether you're planting flowers or dyeing Easter eggs, spring is definitely your season!

Tuesday, 17 October 2006

W. in P.

Here we go - Family Quilt "en cours". I misjudged the seam under the first E's in "George" and "Jenny" and the Y came out back to front, but hey, wonky is the word! I was going to continue the green border all the way round, but like the effect of the squares on the R/H side.

Monday, 16 October 2006

An Alternative ....

to Bloglines if you use Firefox as your browser. Fizzle

Internet Troubles

Unlike most of you, I am on plain ordinary dial-up (or bas debit) and, boy, does it drive me mad! I have been unable to connect for most of the weekend - I mean not even able to dial out - as Tiscali (my ISP) has decided to sulk, and now I find I am connected to the outside world at a measly 31.2 kbps! So unable to read through the Bloglines list (62 !), but did manage to catch Tonya's, Melzie's (you sound a lot more up beat) and, sadly, Vivi's, who lost her dear dad last Friday. Houses is going great guns and I am really chuffed with it. I promise I will try to upload a photo before we leave for the UK in December, or on the Flickr Free Pieced Quilting group a bit earlier. Alex and I are taking photos of it as it progresses. Alex has left her sports bag behind so we are just about to rush out of the door to take it up to Mareuil sur Belle (kids - don't we just love them!)

Friday, 13 October 2006

I Have Done

Copy and pasted from Shelina's Blog. All you have to do is to copy and paste and highlight in bold the things you have done. 1. Bought everyone in the bar a drink 2. Swam with dolphins 3. Climbed a mountain 4. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive 5. Been inside the Great Pyramid 6. Held a tarantula 7. Taken a candlelit bath with someone 8. Said "I love you" and meant it 9. Hugged a tree 10. Bungee jumped 11. Visited Paris 12. Watched a lightning storm at sea 13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise 14. Seen the Northern Lights 15. Gone to a huge sports game 16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa 17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables 18. Touched an iceberg 19. Slept under the stars 20. Changed a baby's diaper 21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon 22. Watched a meteor shower 23. Gotten drunk on champagne 24. Given more than you can afford to charity 25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope 26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment 27. Had a food fight 28. Bet on a winning horse 29. Asked out a stranger 30. Had a snowball fight 31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can 32. Held a lamb 33. Seen a total eclipse 34. Ridden a roller coaster 35. Hit a home run 36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking 37. Adopted an accent for an entire day 38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment 39. Had two hard drives for your computer 40. Visited all 50 states 41. Taken care of someone who was shit faced 42. Had amazing friends 43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country 44. Watched wild whales 45. Stolen a sign 46. Backpacked in Europe 47. Taken a road-trip 48. Gone rock climbing 49. Midnight walk on the beach 50. Gone sky diving 51. Visited Ireland 52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love 53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger's table and had a meal with them 54. Visited Japan 55. Milked a cow 56. Alphabetized your CDs 57. Pretended to be a superhero 58. Sung karaoke 59. Lounged around in bed all day 60. Posed nude in front of strangers 61. Gone scuba diving 62. Kissed in the rain 63. Played in the mud 64. Played in the rain 65. Gone to a drive-in theater 66. Visited the Great Wall of China 67. Started a business 68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken 69. Toured ancient sites 70. Taken a martial arts class 71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight 72. Gotten married 73. Been in a movie 74. Crashed a party 75. Gotten divorced 76. Gone without food for 5 days 77. Made cookies from scratch 78. Won first prize in a costume contest 79. Ridden a gondola in Venice 80. Gotten a tattoo 81. Rafted the Snake River 82. Been on television news programs as an expert 83. Got flowers for no reason 84. Performed on stage 85. Been to Las Vegas 86. Recorded music 87. Eaten shark 88. Eaten fugu (pufferfish) 9. Had a one-night stand 90. Gone to Thailand 91. Bought a house 92. Been in a combat zone 93. Buried one/both of your parents 94. Been on a cruise ship 95. Spoken more than one language fluently 96. Performed in Rocky Horror Picture Show 97. Raised children 98. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour 99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country 100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over 101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge 102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn't stop when you knew someone was looking 103. Had plastic surgery 104. Survived an accident that you shouldn't have survived 105. Wrote articles for a large publication 106. Lost over 100 pounds 107. Held someone while they were having a flashback 108. Piloted an airplane 109. Petted a stingray 110. Broken someone's heart 111.Ridden a bike 112. Won money on a T.V. game show 113. Broken a bone 114. Gone on an African photo safari 115. Had a body part of yours below the neck pierced 116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol 117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild 118. Ridden a horse 119. Had surgery 120. Had a snake as a pet 121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon 122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours 123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states 124. Visited all 7 continents 125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days 126. Eaten kangaroo meat 127. Eaten sushi 128. Had your picture in the newspaper 129. Changed someone's mind about something you care deeply about 130. Gone back to school 131. Parasailed 132. Petted a cockroach 133. Eaten fried green tomatoes 134. Read The Iliad and The Odyssey 135. Selected one important author who you missed in school, and read 136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating 137. Skipped all your school reunions 138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language 139. Been elected to public office 140. Written your own computer language 141. Thought to yourself that you're living your dream 142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care 143. Built your own PC from parts 144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn't know you 145. Had a booth at a street fair 146. Dyed your hair 147. Been a DJ 148. Shaved your head 149. Caused a car accident 150. Saved someone's life

Jenni's Blocks and a Cat

Jenni's blocks arrived from Australia earlier this week and they can be seen here. Christine Suisse lives in the next village, is a friend of our neighbour, Pam who made the heart blocks, has made a lovely block for me.

Thursday, 12 October 2006

Family Quilt

Tonya has been talking about inspiration for a Family Quilt and I decided to convert the Houses quilt into a sort of family quilt. Anyway, I started cutting strips for the letters on Tuesday afternoon, got on a "quilt run" and was piecing them together at 5.00 a.m yesterday morning (unable to sleep again). Then I got the bit between my teeth and finished the top at 2.00 a.m this morning. For the first time for weeks I slept like a log and woke up at 8.30 a.m shouting that we had overslept. DH had taken Alex to the bus - huge sigh of relief! Can't upload a photo cos this quilt is going to my Mum for Christmas and sisters and step-father read this blog from time to time. Anyway, S-D's name and Mum's name are free pieced letters and make up part of the border (red on green background) and the rest of the family's names are going to be stitched onto the rooves of the houses. Other halves' names are going to be stitched in the borders of the houses. Other family names and names of animals (past and present) are going to be stitched in the border. So the top is done and I am now going to give myself a day off, do some gardening and chill out! Thanks for your comments on O's and X's. The colours didn't run and it is waiting to be given to its recipient. Yes, I too wonder how D.J managed to quilt by candle light. The kitchen lights were ablaze yesterday!

Tuesday, 10 October 2006

Just Ambling and Wondering ....

Ambling along for a bit after that burst of sewing and got to wondering about quilts and their history. OK, we all know about the Dear Jane quilts and their history, but how? These days we have digital cameras, Blogs, books, etc, etc. How were those quilts recorded before the days of cameras and glossy "coffee table" books. What would those pioneers of quilts think of us these days with our electric sewing machines, special thread, cutting boards, rotary cutters, material especially made for quilting, proper wadding, etc, etc, etc. I wonder? Have finally caught up on Blogs and no one is seeing a photo of my laundry room! It doubles up as DH's workshop, storage room for the plants in winter and, as well as the dryer and 2 washing machines, houses the outdoor furniture and the chest freezer. Oh, and it is downstairs in the "cave".

Monday, 9 October 2006

Look What I Finished Yesterday!

Boy was I getting fed up with it! I started the binding on Saturday afternoon and had to unpick the whole lot yesterday morning. It still isn't right, but it's better than it was! Now it is to be washed (she says crossing fingers that the colours won't run), initialled and handed over to its recipient. And today I hope to get the top of Houses finished, batted and backed (heavy sigh).

Saturday, 7 October 2006

Music While You Sew?

I was wondering what people do while they are sewing, especially if they are hand quilting. I have tried watching t.v/a DVD but find I can't to that and sew. So I listen to CD's, audio books and BBC Radio 2 and 4 (sometimes 7 if I am in the mood). We are great Harry Potter fans and have the first 5 books on cassette (or K7 as the French call it - work it out!). Read by Stephen Fry they make superb listening. I bought Alan Bennett's Talking Heads on cassette for 1 Euro at a car boot sale recently and am addicted to that too. So you have some idea of what I do when I am sewing.

Friday, 6 October 2006

Playing Catch Up

Every time I think I am there, someone else posts and the unread Bloglines goes up to 60 again! I'm trying my hardest to catch up. In the meantime, thank you to everyone for leaving comments. Lily - I can't email you as you left an anonymous comment. Go on, just one! Let me have your email so I can send you my snail mail address. I am on the home stretch with Os and Xs and am off to Javerlhac in a minute to find some material for the border and back of Houses and to see what price they will give me on loads of batting and meters of red and white material for the backs of the quilts. I promise I won't get side tracked by anything else. If I do, it will just have to stay on the shelves until next month (by which time it will have gone!). My neighbour, Pam, told me of a material shop in Thiviers. It sells grocery stuff and cigarettes, but if you go right to the back you will find proper patchwork fabric, for a price! I've passed it before, but because it has got the red and white "tabac" sign outside, haven't really paid it any attention. Will next time though :-) This is Magic and Podge on Alex's lap. Magic is getting cross because Podge is trying to push her off.

Serena's Blocks

can be seen here. I love the flowers.

Pam's Hearts

Photo's don't do them justice

Thursday, 5 October 2006

Mini Tempete Hits Ferme de Chabrol Head On!

Tuesday morning was fine - spoke to Megs, caught up on the mails, started reading through my Bloglines and reading and responding to various Q's4L mails. The computer went ping! Rebooted, it went ping again, and again and then no electricity.

Noticed it was getting a bit windy outside, but didn't pay much attention.

Then Rex came upstairs and said would I give him a hand - the Olive tree had fallen over and there was a bit of a gale outside.

Gale wasn't the word! We got the Olive tree inside and waited for the wind to drop. Walnuts flying in all directions, various trees bent double and all a bit scary.

When the wind finally dropped we went out to inspect the damage.

Big green table is no more - it took off, went slap into the fig tree and the normally very solid legs splayed outwards. One sun bed decided it was going to go for a swim and is, thankfully, undamaged. The table took one big terracotta pot and oleander with it. Olive tree has lost its one olive, but thankfully pot is undamaged. One tile fell off the north side of the roof and there are bits of black bache from goodness only knows where. The pool was full to the brim with leaves of various descriptions, most notably walnut and buddelia.

The whole area was without power for Tuesday afternoon/evening and all day yesterday and the phone was off all day yesterday. 7.00 p.mish last night power and the phone were restored, this morning no phone. Phone came back on at lunchtime today.

At least this time we had running water (unlike 1999/2000 when we were without water for a week!), but unlike 1999/2000 we had a nearly full chest freezer to worry about. Thankfully the power was restored within 48 hours and the contents of both freezers are ok.

But guess who forgot to take any pictures! What is the point of having a digital camera if you keep on forgetting you've got it!

Once again, I am catching up on mails, blogs and stuff so please excuse me if you are waiting for an answer re the quilts, or whatever.

Oh and if you are reading this on my blog(s), blocks have now been received from Serena, Juliann, Veronica, Mel, Fiona and Marcie.

Clare xx

Monday, 2 October 2006

What Colour Red are You?

With thanks to Mama Koch. I thought this was appropriate for "the cause".
You Are Apple Red
You're never one to take life too seriously, and because of it, you're a ton of fun. And although you have a great sense of humor, you are never superficial. Deep and caring, you do like to get to the core of people - to understand them well. However, any probing you do is light hearted and fun, sometimes causing people to misjudge you.


Has been moved to here cos the list of contributors was getting too big for the side bar. I wil continue to post updates and photos on here, as well as on the other blog.

September Goals 0 - Stash 1

Oh dear not one goal that I can put a line through and say, with delight, I've Done It! O's and X's is nearly finished, the top of the wall hanging for Mum, as you know, is sort of there and the rest is at a standstill. To punish myself I am going on Kim's October Fabric Diet and I'm not going to buy one little piece of fabric this month, not one. I am not going to get side tracked. I am not going to get side tracked. I have changed September to October and let's hope that this month I manage to put a line through a few things! On the Blocks for Leukaemia front, welcome to Karen at Passionate Quilter. We are now up to 25 blocks and more on the way. I must start (ha ha) thinking about the back, whether or not sashing will be needed, etc, etc. I need a huge expansive of floor, a very big white sheet and a lot of patience! Oh and could you all stop posting please - 62 feeds this morning! Its going to take me an age to catch up!