Monday, February 20, 2017

Clean Out Your Scraps...

...and hopefully feel a little tidier, in the process.

(I know whereof I speak right now, with piles EVERYWHERE.)

I first saw these blocks on Pinterest. Amber Johnson, of Gigi's Thimble in Alpine, Utah, has combined a Sixteen Patch with a Variable Star to make a scrappy block that uses up a LOT of fabric. Plus a generous hunk of background muslin or solid. (I'd use a monoprint or tiny dot, to add even more texture.)
     These are so simple that they're brilliant.

Here's the tutorial, from start to finish. The method produces a 12" finished block (12 1/2", including extra for seams), which should be incredibly useful. As few as 56 blocks (a 7 x 8 set -- 7 rows across and 8 down, with no sashing) could produce an 84" x 96" large queen top.

Or add 2" finished sashing in between -- which is what she shows in her four-block example. Then you can get by with a 6 x 7 set: 42 blocks total. The 2" sashing adds 12" on the horizontal rows, and 14" on the vertical ones.
                            In other words:
     6 x 12" blocks = 72", plus 12" sashing = 84".
     7 x 12" blocks = 84", plus 14" sashing = 98."

A good size for a large queen top. Add borders, and you've got a king-sized top, instead.

(E-mail me at cindy@, if you're not following this. I can explain it more thoroughly.)

The same design -- but in red & blue, with blocks separated by 2" sashing and intersection squares

   Amber has you cutting out squares for those Sixteen Patch center blocks -- but frankly, I'd just strip piece them from 2 1/2" strips cut from scraps, adding a strip cut from background fabric. Cut a 2 1/2" wedge from those two-fabric strips, randomly sew them together in groups of two, and you'll get the same four-square effect, with a lot less work.
     (4 squares = one row; 4 rows = one center block. You'll need four more 2-fabric wedges for the outer corners.)

I know where all my scrappy bits and pieces are going, thanks to Amber!

She's got more free patterns available through her blog, A Little Bit Biased.
Her current patterns often feature fat quarters -- those pesky guys we quilters love to collect.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Monday Stuff On the Way To Other Stuff: Where Did February Go?

It seems like the month just started -- how can I get everything done on time?
       Making apple dumplings and cleaning up the house 
                                            (Happy Birthday, David! Love you, Davey bo) 
      Finishing up my workload -- and another appraisal appointment on Friday
      Including cleaning out the house. 
      Packing up inventory for storage
      Donating a bunch of stuff...especially quilts and fabric to the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum.
              And more. 

Back to work.

Hopefully a lot...


Video from exploring the wreck of the H.M.S. Erebus -- one of the two ships from Franklin's Expedition to find the Northwest Passage. More about this in an upcoming post.

Be careful who you're rude to... Better yet, don't do it in the first place.

Lake Berryessa's Glory Hole has just started spilling over. Blame all that rain the Californians have been having. (Wish they'd send some our way, instead -- it's been really dry here.)

A Swiffer Wetjet hack you'll use a lot -- plus the power of vinegar.  (From Surviving and Thriving)

Blessing a friend -- without breaking the bank.  (From Moneysaving Mom)

Found Money in the Street:  a blog that counts up the change and bills this person finds all year. Weird, but interesting. And the $$ totals are higher than you'd think. But I'll bet she hasn't found this much:

More than 22 million in cash found in an attic -- and grabbed by the Feds! Speaking of that:

Ten people who found a LOT of money -- and returned it because 'it wasn't theirs.' Wow.  (From Listverse)

El Castillo, one of the primary pyramids at Chichen Itza, not only is one pyramid -- it's three. Built one inside each other...on top of a cenote.
     I'm pretty sure this is the "bird" pyramid that we visited once. If you clap your hands at the base of the pyramid, what sounds very much like a bird chirp comes out at the top!

Top examples of 'extreme presence of mind.'  (From Quora)

Ten things seen by humans only ONCE. Really.  (From Listverse)

Eleven signs your kids are becoming Austrian.  I spent a summer there back in college days, and have fond memories...

Underwater Photographer of the Year winners are out for 2017.  Insanely cool photos.

Movie and tv quotes so weird they were almost brilliant.  (From Cracked)

Life...and tomato jam.  (From Diary of A Stay At Home Mom)

Scientists are working to reverse death. Well, good luck with that.  (From Newser)

And my very favorite dog commercial ever -- Charley would love to do this. If we'd let him.

And for a nice selection of dog commercials worldwide:

Have a great week.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Firefall in Yosemite

Every year about this time, the setting sun hits Horsetail Fall in Yosemite National Park...

and turns it into something wonderful.

Here's the latest version.

Friday, February 17, 2017


Give the man a raise.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Christians Aren't Being Persecuted That Badly in Muslim-Dominated Countries...Right?

Read this post, and see if this fits your scenario of being able to practice your faith freely:

A pastor and eight other members of his congregation are missing --

A Muslim mob charged into a church prayer meeting in eastern Uganda, locked the doors, then beat several members and raped 15 women.

"The approximately 90 Muslims broke into the evening prayer meeting of Katira church of Uganda, in Katira village, Budaka District at about 8:30 p.m. on Jan. 15 and beat them with clubs and sticks...Previously Muslims had only thrown stones at the roof of the church building to disrupt church services of the 500 member congregation..."

"...among those who escaped before the doors were locked was a Christian who heard one of the assailants shout, 'Away with the pastor who is converting our Muslims to Christianity,' a church leader said."

The whereabouts of the pastor, Moses Mutasa, and his parishioners, are still unknown, more than two weeks after the attack. It's thought they are either being held hostage...or dead.

I wish I could say this incident is atypical, that it hardly ever happens, especially in Muslim-dominated countries...
    but it's not.

No wonder these Christians are desperate to immigrate. I would feel the same way, if only for my children.

They've Got A Point


The sad part: I've enjoyed every single one of these!
     (The Brick thinks they're nutty.)


...recovering from a day of Golden West and Hanky Panky at the Piecing Partners Quilt Guild meeting in Colorado Springs.

I had a lot of fun, but boy -- you quilters are energetic!

I'll be back tomorrow, after I ship orders, do some ironing and finish off a bunch of projects. 
          Hang in there yourself.