Quilting for the love of it.


I’ve been sewing and quilting for many years, after I walk the dogs and feed the animals sewing is my normal. Oh sure, I never forget about my coffee. I must have my coffee. When I go to bed, I say goodnight to the husband and the dogs. but just know, I’ll sleep more restful if I’ve got my sewing time in.

As a quilter I love to share my quilting with others, that could be trying to teach someone how to sew or making a quilt for a loved one. There is a greater joy that exists for me in quilting and that is giving back to others. I grew up in a large family and that meant we shared with others always. I’ve made and shared my quilts with a group out of Ohio, “Quilts of Compassion.”

This group takes in quilts from other quilters all over and delivers them to victims of tornadoes and disaster situations. I love knowing my quilts are out there making a difference in the lives of those in need. I will never know or perhaps meet any of these people who receive one of my quilts but I feel like some how I’ve wrapped them in love from a distance.

Giving back means the world to me. My husband is a veteran, and of course a wonderful man too. I think about all of our veterans everyday, and more importantly, their lives matter too. They matter a lot. I’m proud to say I make quilts for veterans too. It puts a smile on their face and they know they matter to someone. Our veterans gave a lot for us to be free, for our freedom is sometimes taken for granted. My goal is to wrap as many veterans in comfort with a quilt as I can. My dogs who are always by my side keep me company as another quilt is completed, whether it be a kid quilt, or a veteran it’s for sure going to bring lots of smiles, theirs and mine.

Idle hands


I feel sort of in between projects right now. There are several almost done, that just need a bit of tweaking, and many more that will be done soon. A bit of wool here and there, a few flowers and I’m good to go.

But then there are the writing projects, those are really taking up a lot of time. Who ever said writing is easy is so wrong. I’m currently sticking with two projects which are both novels.  One is my YA novel, I’m half way through, which is farther than I have got in a first draft in quite some time.

The other is adult fiction which I’m happy to say is also half done. These characters are in my head, they speak to me. Writers write, I write daily. I take advantage of snippets of time some days. Other days when there are no interruptions I can write for longer  periods and knock off two or more chapters.

My birds are chirping in the background, so happy and the words just fly one after another. Today however, the words didn’t come. I said a final good bye to someone very special. That is all for now. God bless and enjoy the sunshine.

Freeing the mind


If you have ever had a serious injury or surgery you can probably relate to how I feel. The pain had been ongoing for many months, getting worse as time went on. I was at my wits end, I was not only in horrible pain but my writer brain was frozen. Oh, I had plenty of thoughts, they just wouldn’t pan out. When ever I got one of those thoughts I sat down to write, a sentence or two, but then it was gone. Gone like the wind, and whatever I had written down made no sense. 

I was in trouble, I turned to my quilting. At least I had that. I wanted to get as much done, pain permitting as I could before the surgery. I was told it would be a few weeks before I would be able to do much of anything. The thought of just sitting around all day didn’t sit well with me. What to do?

Meanwhile the creative block was still there, I had words scribbled in note pads everywhere, again none of it made sense. I took up my stitching, it was all I could do. It was easy enough to take some small stitches in an embroidery project I had started weeks earlier. The pain meds were really doing a number on me. Then the day of the surgery came, I went under. Afterwards I was pain free for about 24 hours, it was amazing. When the pain block wore off, I was miserable.

It has now been four weeks and I’m doing well, I have gotten back into quilting, the creativity has come back almost full swing and I have started a new book. I’m so excited about this one I don’t know what comes first, walk the dogs, write or drink coffee.But actually they all go together, walk the dogs and think about the characters, drink coffee and write and then quilt. The thoughts about character and plot come to me while I’m quilting and or drinking coffee. And I can’t help but think about the next scene while walking my dogs. They keep me on my toes always.

This book and quilting will keep me very busy for many months to come.

Moving forward to the new year


Here I sit with my puppy at my side. He is tucked in as if we were together in a big cocoon in a winter storm. He loves to cuddle, his tiny wet nose against my cheek when I hold him close.

He doesn’t know it yet, but most of the time I will be rooted in the chair crafting my next story, will it be the fish story where he swam to far and couldn’t find his way home. Or perhaps the one about the two birds trying to fly. Who knows at this point.

What I know is that there will be writing, lots of it. Some will say I’m being anti-social due to the fact I need to write. I live to write. Being a part of Story storm helps me to stay focused and get the word count in for the day.

Write on I say. Write on.

A Quilters hands getting dirty


Recently while getting ready for another craft show, I was putting the finishing touches on a small quilt that I would be adding to the inventory. I had a long list of things to do that Friday before the show, one of them was to water my plants. One of my african violets was displaying for me the prettiest pink bloom. I had not seen a bloom on any of them in several weeks. One of the older violets seemed to be struggling a bit. 

       When I examined its roots, I knew why. It was in a pot too large, I had read somewhere they like to be in close quarters, sort of like me and my sisters growing up. I decided it was a good time to examine all of the violets because the others weren’t blooming either. I rolled up my sleeves, gathered some pots from a friend, and made room to get to work. Well in order to accomplish this task without to many interruptions I took my dogs for a walk first. The fresh air was a welcome break in the day, the birds were chirping, there were plenty of leaves down. The fact that it is November gave me a gentle reminder that at this time last year, the leaves were covered in snow.

When I got back home I refilled my coffee cup and set out to give my violets a new and better home. I know….its a dirty job but so necessary for the life of the plant. Two and a half hours later, all the violets in the bay window in my kitchen look much healthier and happy. I ventured into the diningroom and took a look at some violets there, these were much newer plants but they needed a slightly larger pot to grow in. African violets don’t have a large root base, even though they may look like a bigger pot is the better choice. I have learned, smaller is better.

           I must have been too long away from my dog, he was jumping at me. He wanted his mama and it was time for me to take a break.  I picked him up, gave him some love and turned to stare at my work. My bay window looked rather spacious, what with all the plants in the proper pots. I intend to do more transplanting over the holiday. But for now my dog and I have discovered an empty chair where he will sleep and I will take a few stitches in my quilt project. Is it any wonder that the design in the quilt is flowers. I like to think of it as a thing of beauty.

Bailey, I miss you


What a lovely fall day this is. I was out early walking my dogs, the fresh air in my face. Anticipating my first cup of coffee and the blank page.  With too many years behind me, I had dreams of one day writing a book about my birds. I actually did start the writing process, I have several chapters of the first draft written. Then work got in the way, my mom and sister were both sick, there just didn’t seem like a right time to spend working on it. So I put it aside.

Then came another writing workshop and I brought out the half done pages of the book. I loved what I had completed but once again I let life and work get in the way. But why did I have so many regrets about not finishing the book. Maybe because my love of quilting took over. I was sewing and quilting non-stop. I’m programmed to quilt, and ideas are everywhere.

I’ve always been a writer, the ideas are everywhere and I go to workshops. I admit to having many interests and passions that carry me away. One of those passions is my pets, let me just put this out there, get it off my chest. Bailey, my baby, the love of my life, my African gray. He made every day wonderful, such a sweet bird who thought he was human. When he took his last breath, it was gut wrenching. The pain of losing him is still there, like losing my mom and my sister.  Bailey was family. Not only did I lose Bailey but my other birds lost a good friend. My Harvey, my Amazon parrot felt the loss as much as I did. Grief and loss are a big part of living with pets because they are your family. I know now that is why I stop working on the novel, that chapter hasn’t been written.

Time has passed and I think, no I know I can get it done. It won’t be easy but I will get it done. My non-fiction novel is back on my radar and I will see it finished. One day soon I will be able to type, The End. I’m excited. Bailey wherever you are my love, I miss you every day.

Quilts of Promise


Off to work I go, it’s Sunday morning. I’m looking forward to the day, the sunshine and fresh air, the birds are chirping contently. After my shift, I am eager to get home and walk my dogs. They are waiting, those little feet of my puppy dance back and forth until we are out the gate.

I’m anxious to get some flower bulbs in, get my hands in the soil, let the growing begin. There are Canna bulbs, Begonia and Calla to plant and a few others. The dogs, back from their walk are roaming the yard, playful and glad to be spending time outside. I visit the greenhouse, where a huge bumblebee greets me buzzing around.  Once he escapes I start planting some bulbs. My knee is rebelling, but I push onward, there is much to be done today.

I refill my coffee cup and now I’m charged up and ready to rock and roll, yes that’s correct. Rock and roll right down to my sewing room to quilt. I’m working on three different quilts at one time. I actually make it a goal to stitch on each quilt every day until they are complete. As far as I’m concerned a day without quilting is not a complete day, I live to quilt. So call me crazy but I get it done. So there I sit working on the floral embroidered quilt which is in the hoop. My puppy wants in my lap under the hoop, he’s whimpering, let me in. But it isn’t working out in his favor, I’m still wearing my scrub top from work, he crawls inside of it and there he stayed for the next two hours while I quilted.  Now that’s what a mom does, makes room for baby.

It was time to take a break from that quilt and work on Sunbonnet Sue, the outer border is nearly complete and I need to cut the binding.  It will be prints from the 30’s to match the other fabrics. I took this quilt outside and sat with the dogs in the yard, what a lovely afternoon it was.  Once dinner was finished, I tackled my crazy quilt that I’m doing for the guild challenge. It is pretty cool, very colorful and I’m excited about it, I’ll be thrilled when it is done. Tomorrow is another day, I’m excited, but first I will rest my aching knee and sleep. Stay tuned to see the completed quilts very soon.

My four seasons quilt


I have really enjoyed working on this quilt challenge, I get myself involved in a few challenges each year. This one is all about the four seasons in Michigan. It’s hard to imagine, do we really experience four seasons. It’s hard to identify in a quilt I think, unless the quilt is four feet wide and ten feet tall.

But alas, it is much smaller, I have shed some light on each of the four seasons in my crazy quilt. My quilt guild chose the theme, set some guidelines, and a deadline. I like deadlines for that reason, I know getting involved with the challenge what I’m up against, how much time I have to do it. Then I need to have a game plan. This is when I can get really creative with different threads, fabrics and fibers. But then I ask myself, about halfway through, did I take on to much. Can I finish it.

Crazy quilting is one of my absolute favorite forms of quilting, but it takes a lot of room and time. When I say room, it is like the whole dining room table. I need the space to pick beads, buttons, lace, oh my it is endless. There is so much to choose from,  but these are big decisions. Orange lace, blue buttons, the bird or the turtle, how will I know.

That’s just it, with any crazy quilt I have made I find it hard to know when it is really done. There is always room for one more bead or flower. My puppy sits under the table waiting for me to move, perhaps towards the back door with my shoes on for his daily walk. Yes of course, we will go, I could use the break from all the choices to be made. And I may get some inspiration for another quilt, oh of course there is always another quilt. I love to quilt. 

This four seasons quilt is ready to be quilted. I’m ready for it to be done, my Sunbonnet Sue quilt needs to be completed and many more. I can only say follow my blog, check me out on Facebook  to see a few little snapshots until the big reveal.

Marathon quilting


I am a crazy quilter, I mean crazy as in get it done. It has been a very busy time these past few weeks. I have been completing ufo’s like there is no end. Then there is the new puppy, when was the last time you trained a puppy.

Because winter decided not to change to Spring until you know when, it was always so cold to put the puppy out side to do his thing. Thank goodness for puppy training pads, but this guy is growing and goes a lot. Finally he goes outside, he is not only cute, he is potty trained.

So while all of this has been going on, and I have been working on a few books and quilting I have also been working on some quilt projects for competition. I love a good challenge.

That is until I almost forgot one, there I was quilting away using a quilt hoop, I don’t like hoops but this was going well. I sat the hoop down to search for more thread when I discovered paperwork for a quilt challenge that I had not even started.  So the marathon quilting was off and running. Now my next few days were booked solid and not a moment to spare. I ran off to visit a friend, I let her know what I was doing, admitted that I must be crazy, but alas for the next four days stitched, cut, sewed and stitched some more. This was not an easy challenge but I am happy and relieved to say it is complete.

By the way it went out UPS this morning, on its way to North Carolina. The work on my book continues and the next quilt challenge isn’t due for a few weeks. And yes I will get it done, sooner rather than later.

Let the creativity in, trying on the new.


I am a writer, I am a quilter, crafter, sewer, mom, grandma, a wife and so much more. Now I’m adding artist to my status and costumer. I know what you’re thinking, how can I do anymore. But my eyes are always open to new challenges.
As a writer, I’ve faced the challenges of finding illustrations for my picture books, let me tell you its not easy. What I want seems so simple, yet so far out of reach. But its a new opportunity for me that I will give it my best shot.
The ideas for quilts and dolls are usually in my head, easily transferred to the fabric. What makes drawing with pencil or paint so difficult, I don’t know.
I’m doing the “Sketch daily” challenge, which for the first one is contrast. I’ll be the first to admit, I’m not great, but follow me to the end, perhaps I’ll be super good. If nothing else, I had fun trying.image