Monday, March 6, 2017

Farm Fun Quilt - Finished!

When I saw the Farm Fun fabric line by Stacy Iest Hsu for Moda, I thought of my cousin Sarah, and I thought, "I should order that when it comes out, just to have for if Sarah has a baby!"  Sarah is a farmer's daughter, and a full-fledged farmer herself, so I knew it would be perfect.

Well, lo and behold, we found out that Sarah's would be a mama!  Yeay!  So I pre-ordered a layer cake and a jelly roll of Farm Fun.  I find most of my quilting inspiration from Pinterest, which is where I got the idea for this pattern.  Just slice the layer cake from one corner to the other, slap some jelly roll strip in the middle and arrange.  It was such a quick cut and a quick sew - my fastest quilt finish ever (as long as you don't count the jelly roll race quilt I made for Sarah's nephew, Luke...)!  I started on the Farm Fun Quilt on January 2nd and had it finished around mid-February!  Woo hoo!  I might not be the world's slowest quilter!!!
I quilted it on my itty bitty beginner machine, on either side of each seam.
Does that "style" of quilting have a name?
I usually lay out my fabric plan on grid paper (because I'm a nerd), but this one was really giving me trouble.  I had to just cut and arrange on my design wall.  Ended up for the center squares putting the matching piece directly across from it (like a pinwheel) worked the best.  The strips were placed where they would work and not touch like-fabric.

I love the results!
Taken on the road right outside our house.  Those are the trees on our second lot.
Behind the quilt is my hunny in his bunny boots!
According to the USPS, this quilt should have arrived at Sarah's house in Friday.  I so hope that baby Timothy and his mommy and daddy enjoy it!

I used a low volume green for the binding the the back.
The quilt is just narrow enough that I didn't have to piece the back.
Unfortunately, I forgot to measure it...

I used the wide-angle lens feature of my LG V20 to take this shot.
It shows how deep the snow is.
The boards sticking up out of the snow are the sawbuck for cutting logs.
That snow would be above my knees.
See the black "dot" in the highest snow?
That's a tire that was placed there to help keep the tarp in place on top of the logs.
The snow on it is at least as "tall" as the tire is!
All the snow this year has hindered where I can go take photos.
I need snow shoes next year...
The Farm Fun Quilt is my second finished quilt of 2017.

Linking up to:
Main Crush Monday
Sew Fresh Quilts
Freemotion by the River
My Quilt Infatuation
Love Laugh Quilt
Moving It Forward

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

February 2017

February 2017 in a nutshell:

Obligatory Mt. Drum photo:
Crock potted some moose, then used the leftovers to make soup.  The noodles were reindeer shaped, so I called it Moose & Reindeer soup:
leftovers were a bit thicker than soup...
Took a drive south for a view and then some dinner:
the view from Willow Lake
February was the month of the moose!  Jeff kept seeing moose - a mama and her twins were eating right out in front of the phone company - and finally he called me to say that there was a mama and her baby eating in the open field near the house!  I grabbed the camera and made my way there, less than 1 mile away!
And here she is, knelt down where she's cleared out the snow, having lunch.
And then, on Valentine's Day, Jeff was getting ready for work and he said, "Honey!  Don't move!  Come over here."  To which I asked "Which is it?  Don't move or come over there?"  :-)
He had noticed a couple of dark lumps in our backyard!  It was a mama moose and her baby!  Whoa my gosh, I was so excited!  The kind of excited where Homer jumps from one foot to the other saying "oh my god oh my god oh my god!"
Look at the moose in my backyard!!!
 And I proceeded to take many pictures of moose from our back door...
This is when they started to move their ears around - they had heard something....
Mama in front, baby in back...
They must have decided the noise they heard wasn't too alarming, and they went on to having breakfast...

Do you see how close she is to the back porch?!?!?!?!?!?  I was freaking out it was so cool!!!

I so badly wished to open the door and go out on the back porch but I knew better.  She would be to me in one second flat, and even though she's a vegetarian, she would have gotten me!

When they were done with our "salad bar", they walked along the side of the house to the road out front.  I raced to the bathroom window and then out the front door to watch them.  Man, it was so exciting!!!

Baby moose looking back at me to make sure I wasn't up to something fishy....
That was the most exciting thing to happen around here, and I just wish they would come back.  I am worried that they'll come back once I have the garden planted and they think it's open for business....

We had some warm weather on Valentine's Day too.....
pay no attention to the outside humidity...
On the 25th we headed to Chistochina (Chisto for short) to watch Jeff's co-worker (Dennis) run his dogs in the sled races at Chistochina Fun Days.  He was running his puppies, just born this past summer.
Dennis's lead dogs - I met the one on the left the day prior when we dropped off a bunch of caribou meat (yuck, I won't eat it and I won't cook it.  I prefer moose).  She's very low-key, kinda timid, and smelled like dog.
If you think there's too  many people at the Iditarod, go and watch the Copper Basin 300.  If you think there are too many people at the Copper Basin 300, go to Chistochina Fun Days.  :-)
Dennis having a final word with his lead dogs.

Go Dennis!

This team had fancy harnesses.
These were sprints.  We watched the 6-dog team races, and they only went 6 miles.  The quickest finish was less than 20 minutes.

It was cool to get to see finishes.  I hadn't seen a sled dog race finish before, just the starts.

Here comes Dennis and his team!  Whoa, they're not going very fast...
In fact, he had to encourage the team to cross the finish line!  They stopped before his sled crossed the line!
Those puppies were tired...
 It was a beautiful day and beautiful scenery for the event...

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

January 2017

So, um, I was trying to decide if I was going to continue blogging, and I thought, maybe if I just commit to one post a month, then if I want to look back on what I did when, it'll all be right here.  Not sure if anyone follows or checks in, so I'm just worried about doing this for me at this point.  Most pics go on Instagram at this time anyway.  Feel free to follow me there if you want to see more pictures of Alaska, quilting, gardening, and general everyday life...

Kiaj sent this new Packer sweatshirt for Christmas - I love it!  I'm sure this sweatshirt is why the Pack went as far as they did in the playoffs...

January 1 view looking out one of the bedroom windows...  What a beautiful day!

Mandatory Mt. Drum shot:
 It's always cold out when I go for my winter dental appointment...
Jeff said "The Death Star is over Mt. Drum" one day...
Photo credits:  Jeff
The biggest excitement of the month was the Copper Basin 300.  This year the start was at the traditional location - downtown Glennallen - which means the teams raced right in front of the phone company.  I'm definitely going to enter a picture into the contest for the front page of the phone book!

I love when the doggies all have matching booties!

Jeff's favorite mushers are the twins from Seeing Double Dogsled Racing...
One one of the twins raced this year.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Cozy Christmas Quilt - Finished!

Whew!  Finally finished this one!  This lovely quilt is for my cousin Leah, and her husband Franklin, as a wedding gift.  According to the Post Office, they should receive this today.  When we found out about her upcoming wedding (last summer), I decided to make a quilt that they could snuggle under as their wedding present.  Since their wedding was in October (what a nice month to get married!), I decided to make a Christmas quilt.  I had ordered some Christmas fabrics that I liked (you know, on clearance, end of the bolt prices), plus received some great coordinating pieces in a Mystery Bundle.  A purchase of gray solid sealed the deal!

I started cutting in August...

Did some chain piecing in September, and did a lot of sewing on the wedding day in October...

I had the quilt put together (for the most part) by the end of October....
do you like my design wall?

And then I hit a wall.  I stopped working full-time (voluntarily) the end of October.  And I think that I was stopping myself from quilting because the house wasn't clean enough.  Like, I hadn't done a good enough job on housework that I didn't deserve to quilt.  Self-flagellation, party of one...

Not only that, this quilt is huge (by my standards) and I knew that it would just piss me off when I tried to quilt it on my little bitty beginner machine with the itty bitty throat.  So I considered hand tying it with yarn.  When I asking my coworker what she thought of hand-tied quilts (because I don't care for them and I wanted a quilter to tell me it was okay), so said no, but that she had just ordered a long-arm and that I could quilt it on her machine!!!!

Oh, happy day!!!  The beginning of January, seriously, like on the 1st of January, I finished up the final 3 seams to finish the quilt top, made the backing, and then latter in January set off to Audrey's to quilt it up.
Hi Audrey!  You're the best!
Audrey says she's still learning her machine, but she still taught me a lot.  Neither of us are artists with the panto-graph, but it turned out just fine.  The entire time we were there, my whole body was just buzzing!  Like the electricity was in me!  I told Audrey and her husband that there was no way my husband would like them now, because I'd be going home and telling him that now I need a long-arm!
first pass on the long-arm
 But, alas, I have neither the money nor the space for a long arm.  Perhaps in another life...

And since I'm slow as molasses, it took me until February to make the binding and bind the quilt.  What's with my slowness???
Foxes are super cute, but not one of the Christmas fabrics!
They just went so well with the other fabrics, I had to use it!
 By the time it was bound and washed, we'd had a Chinook blow through and melt all the snow off the trees...  I held out for about a week, hoping for snow to pretty up the joint, but it didn't happen...
crinkly goodness!

I LOVE the backing fabric!!!
 So I finally got Jeff and the camera and the quilt and we headed outside.

I'm so happy to have made this quilt, and the finish makes me so proud!

And as I sit here writing this, I see the hoarfrost all over the trees, with a light snowfall coming down, creating beautiful winter white trees...  Time to photograph another quilt!

Cozy Christmas Quilt is my first finish of 2017.
Also, it's the first quilt for which I used the QuiltCut2, the design wall, and Audrey's long-arm sewing machine.  Quite the quilt of firsts!

Linking up to:
Main Crush Monday
Love Laugh Quilt
Sew Fresh Quilts
Freemotion By The River
My Quilt Infatuation
Fabric Frenzy Friday