Friday, November 27, 2020

Cole Update

 Since we just passed Thanksgiving I have been thinking of things I am thankful for. 
 Of course family and friends are on the top of this list.  
Cats count as family, right? 
 So today I am thankful for my cats. 
 I am especially thankful to everyone that helped me to save Cole's life.  
We have 16 days of shots to go. 
We took Cole to the vet for his blood work last Friday and it is perfect!  
His immune system is making mature immune cells and his heart murmur is stable for the moment. 
 He gained almost a whole pound in the last month too. 
 He will move into observation of 84 more days and monthly blood work on December 13 if his blood work is just as good on the 18th of December when we go back to the vet.  
We have reached our fundraising goals but I am leaving the fundraiser open. 
 I will close it once we are sure he hasn't relapsed (God willing that doesn't happen).
 If anyone would like to contribute to the ongoing vet bills that would be appreciated as well.  
I thought I would share a few of my recent happy photos of the boys for you to enjoy.  
Thanks again and please keep us in your prayers!

I was trying to press some blocks and he was helping me.  Look at his fangs, LOL.

I packaged up the Christmas bear top and backing. 
 I sent it off to my quilter to work on so perhaps I can get it back when I return home. 
 I'm a little nervous that I will have at least 3 quilts to bind for Christmas presents.  

Probably one of my favorite photos is of Cole meeting Avery at the camper.

We were trying to play Scrabble recently and the boys were "helping".

The boys were having a lazy day recently too.
They love this quilt!

Oh and I am very thankful for this guy.

What did you celebrate being thankful for?


Saturday, November 21, 2020

The Haw River and Graffiti Bridge

 Recently we went for a walk along the Haw river in NC.  
I thought the scenery was so beautiful!

There were several large rock structures in the river and this one reminded me of a gator.

This on reminded me of a frog

I love that you can see the falls in the background of this photo.

We found this amazing graffiti bridge in Bynum. 
 I thought I was pretty clever making Chris stand near this one.

I didn't get a photo but the entire bridge was COVERED in graffiti. 
 One over the top of the other. 
 Except this one was left untouched. 
 I thought that was really cool.  
It felt like the artists respected it enough to leave it alone. 
 At least that's how I chose to see it.

The rest of the pics were just art that I liked.

It was an interesting place to visit. 
 The beauty of the river and the area contrasting with the graffiti, art on the bridge.  


Sunday, November 15, 2020

A New Quilt Begins

 I brought some projects with me knowing there would be some down time. 
 I've made it through several of them and am hoping to get at least one more on it's way to being done.  So that being said, my All Hallows Eve quilt was the one I started working on next.  
The pattern is one I re-discovered recently and it looked super easy (and it is).  
It is basically a rail fence with the center being a skinny strip.  
I have been having fun with it.  
I was hoping to make a queen sized quilt but am shy a few blocks. 
 I used 2 jelly rolls of All Hallows Eve fabric and was able to use the cream strips for the light blocks.  Interestingly, I was able to make enough blocks for a size between the twin and queen 
(not a size on the pattern). 
 I did find some fabric at a local shop 
so will see if I can make enough additional blocks to make an actual queen.  
Both Cole and Finn like to lay on all the blocks.
  Cole has been throwing up in the mornings so 
I have to put them away so he doesn't get anything on them.

I didn't realize how much black yardage I was going to need.
I brought 2 different black fabrics.
One alone was not enough to do the whole quilt so I used both!
The pattern calls for all the same light for the light blocks but I just used the light strips.
So mine will be a little more scrappy.
I think I will try to use the blacks I have for the black border too.
Scrappy seems to be the theme of this quilt.

I was cutting the strips into blocks and Cole was holding down the pressing mat

He wanted me to stop pressing my strip sets so he could lay on the warm mat.

One afternoon I was watching a Hunger Games marathon and cutting strip sets into blocks.

The pattern I am making is called Brownstone and it looks like this.  If you need to make one too, you can find a pattern here.

I still have a few more strip sets to make and then sew into blocks.
I trimmed the blocks I have done last night.
I'm one step closer to being able to lay this out.
I need to find some of the orange large flower print for the outer border.
Otherwise I think I am set with borders.


Sunday, November 08, 2020

On Becoming A Gigi

 As most of you know, we welcomed a grandson, Avery, into our family a few weeks ago. 
He is amazing and I will always be grateful that he is the one that made me a Gigi.  

Indulge me a few moments though as I muse about some of my thoughts and feelings. 
 I was not prepared for the emotions I would feel as I watched my little girl take care of her baby. 
 I have had the privilege of staying over most nights to help out on late night baby duty.  
The kids are doing amazingly well adjusting to the chaos that comes 
when you add a tiny human into your home.
  It's hard!  It's exhausting and filled with anxiety. 
  It's also joyful and amazing. 
 It's really difficult to see that part when you are in the middle of sleep deprivation and anxiety though.  I am so proud of these two! 
 They have supported one another and are working every day to figure out a way to make a new life.

I am totally in love with this baby.  I would hold him all day and all night.
  It's a fine line for me to walk. 
 OF COURSE, I want to be there all the time but
I know they need time to find their way as a new family.
  I stay the night and help with late night baby duty. 
 I am helping with the household chores, which is also my pleasure.

As most mom's know, the mother daughter relationship is complex. 
 Ours has mostly been a good relationship, but even we have our days.  

Nothing prepared me for having my daughter look at me
 when I was ready to leave and whisper, "Don't go". 
 My brave, amazing, confident daughter still wants and needs her mom. 
 My heart was in a puddle.  
She is gaining confidence daily. 
 She is already an amazing mom and just needs a little bit more sleep to realize it. 
 Her hubby has been so supportive and takes the shift before mine.
That guy has to patience of Job!  
I am so very proud of BOTH of them!  
Thank you so much for letting me share in this amazing time in your lives.  
You really have no idea how much it means to me.

~Love, Gigi

Tuesday, November 03, 2020

Changing Station

 I don't often make 3-D items like bags and such. 
 I decided to make a Changing Station (Patterns by Annie) for Avery.  
Talk about intimidating!!! 
 Just for me though, as I am always so nervous about making bags.
I bought all the things I needed to make it and then I let it sit...for months. 
 As the birth got closer I figured I really needed to bite the bullet and start it. 
 It was SO SCARY!  I 
took a deep breath, put on my Big Girl panties and started.  
I am proud to say I actually finished it! 
 Is it perfect,? NO.  is it done? YES. 
 Am I happy with it?  Mostly.

  If I make another one I would do a few things differently, like not use a big print.  
Or if I did I would know how to center it better and the directions the things go.  
It was the first time I used PUL (a waterproof fabric).  
I learned a LOT while making this.  
The pattern is very well written and I only had to rip out a few things
 (because it is difficult for me to think in 3-D). 

I cut my fabric and did the quilting before I could begin cutting out the pieces for the bag.  
I opted for straight lines and used tape to begin then guided with my walking foot.

Now for the finished bag!
This is the front of the bag.  
You can see that right under the striped bit there is a zipper closing a pocket on the outside of the bag.

I am going to show each part.  

This is the bag from the back side.

This is with the tab open and the first flap folded down.
There is a mesh pocket with a zipper. 
 I bought metal pulls to put on my zippers rather than making and using fabric pulls. 
 It saved a lot of time and frustration as those were teeny, tiny!

This is opened up one more time.  
You can see the 2 mesh pockets on the bottom of the photo and 
the top part is the removable changing pad part, folded up.

This is as I was opening up the changing pad part.
The white is the PUL

Here you can see the pad opened up all the way. 
 It is actually removable too. 
 At the top where it is attached to the bag, there is a Velcro strip under it so the pad can be removed!

This shows the entire thing when flipped over to the back side when it is all opened.

I loved the stripe cut on the bias for the binding. 
 I would cut the part that holds the entire pouch closed differently next time. 
 I cut the squirrels horizontal when it should have been a vertical cut to show up when closed. 
 If you zoom in on my photo you will see what I mean about that.

I bought a ball point needle to use on the PUL. 
 I also had to sew with tissue paper to avoid the PUL stretching.  
They are NOT kidding. 
 I tried without it and had to rip that out and re-do using the tissue paper.  
Then it sewed like a dream.
  I lengthened the stitch length to sew on the PUL and I think that helped too.  

So if you are nervous about working in 3-D like me, Patterns by Annie has your back.
Her patterns are well written and easy to follow.
Some of her patterns have videos and she is also very responsive to answering questions.
NO, I am not affiliated with her in any way, just a fan girl!

I am thinking I should make a couple more of these just so I get comfortable in making them.
Wouldn't these be great baby shower gifts?
Although to be fair, it took me 3 days to make, LOL.

I don't know how much more I will be blogging for awhile as we are spending all our time with baby Avery and the kids, so not much sewing will be happening over here.

I do have a couple more things here with me so you never know though!


Sunday, November 01, 2020

Avery's Baby Quilt

 I don't think I have shared Avery's baby quilt yet. 
 I have had it done for quite some time but didn't want to share it until I had gifted it.  
I made the bear quilt designed by Annie Brady, using her  Big Sky fabric line.
 I bought the kit and then decided to only make the bear center part. 
 My daughter loved it and so did I!  

My LAQ used wood grain as if the bear were looking out of the trees.  I love it!

I found the cutest minky for the back too.

I had made a little self binding blanket using fox flannel and gray minky for the center.

Turns out that little fox blanket is being used all the time! 
It is the perfect size.

So next time I will share the thing I am the proudest about making for the baby.


Stay tuned!