Tuesday, September 29, 2020

To Do Tuesday for 9/29/2020

Checking off my to do list at work took priority this last week.  End of year reviews are coming up, so it's time to finish off what's left of the 2020 goals.  Not much different with what I'm doing with my 2020 quilting ambitions.  Even though there were some long work days last week, I still managed to check off all the items on last week's to do list. 

  • Red, White and Blue Stars: Decide on sashing fabric
  • Morewood Mystery: Finish September clue blocks
  • Unity: Make HSTs and blocks for step 4
  • 2019 Christmas Mystery: Mail out for quilting

I've completed my to do lists for the last four weeks.  So am I not being ambitious enough? Should there be so much on the list that I don't get it all done each week? Would that be more motivating?  It does feel really good to get my list checked off each week and I'm making good progress on my UFO list. Since there is so much going on at work right now, I'm going to stick to just four to dos for this next week.  No point adding to the stress levels.  Here's the plan for next week. 

Red, White and Blue Stars:  Start sashing the blocks.  

After much dithering and seeking input from the family and blog visitors, I ended up choosing the original red and white print I started with. 

With the sashing finally decided, I needed to finalize the setting.

The final sticking point was the color of the corner stones, red or blue.  I'm hoping there is enough of the dark blue to finish this setting, if not it will red corner stones. Both work, the blue corner stones just tone down the red sashing a bit. 

Morewood Mystery: Start October clue

Based on the cutting instructions, we are finished with the dark blue (B), but there are still a pile of the violet (A) squares.  So October's clue should use C or D.  

Storm at Sea: Trim quilt, make and attach binding to front of quilt 

First I have to pick up the quilt at the post office. That will hopefully happen today at lunch.  The label is ready, I just need to print it off on fabric so it's ready to attach with the binding.  

Unity: Make HSTs and Blocks for Step 4.  

Still need to finish off the top and bottom borders for round 4.  I'm not anywhere close to having that done. But there should be more progress on that this week.  

That's my to do list for the week. Linking up with Home Sewn by Us for To Do Tuesday.  

Monday, September 28, 2020

Not a Lot of Stitching Going On

 It was a long weekend for us. We took Friday off so we could get some things done around the house. We had an appointment with a locksmith in the morning to fix two doors with broken locks. In the afternoon it was the heating and air guy to check the furnaces for any CO leaks or other issues to ensure we can safely run the furnaces when it finally gets that cold.  There was some house cleaning and other necessary activities going on as well. Then the Scientist in Training made an appearance.  She's just finished her first round of tests and came home to relax and hang out.  There was as trip to Tulsa to get necessary items we can't get here in town and on Sunday an early birthday celebration for My Guy.  So it was a busy weekend with less stitching time than normal. 

I finished the September Clue of the Morewood Mystery

The October clue should come out Thursday. So I'm caught up for the moment.  

My Guy and the SIT have requested Halloween themed face masks to wear next month.  

Mask pattern from Laundry Basket Quilts 

I made a start on those.  The dancing skeletons is pretty fun, that one is for My Guy. The spider webs are for the SIT and I.  

That's it on the stitching front for this last week.  Linking up with Monday Making and Design Wall Monday.  

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Stitching Stuff: Week 39 of 2020

 I'm hoping for a bit of a slow down day today, it's been a hectic week.  Work has been busy, I went in early and stayed late several days last week. I'm way behind on comment replies and blog reading, but have been able to keep up with my stitching time.  Some weeks there just aren't enough hours in the day.  A few nights last week, getting in just the bare minimum of 15 minutes was a challenge.  How are you doing at fitting in a bit of stitching time each day?  

It wasn't a great week for stitching time, but I managed to fit in the bare minimum of 15 minutes each day. 

  • 15 minute days/week = 7/7 days
  • 15 minute days/September = 24/26 days
  • 15 minute days/2020 = 240/270 days
  • Success rate = 88.89%
Getting in those 15 minutes does make a difference, projects are still moving along.

One sewing room goal this week was to decide on the sashing for the Red, White and Blue Stars quilt.  This was my original choice. 

It's not quite the same color as the border, but it blends OK with it and the other stars.  Not all the stars have the exact same shade of red in them either.  But it seemed too busy, so after striking out with options at the LQS, I ordered another fabric. 

The Scientist in Training likes the second option. My Guy likes the first option. So no consensus from the family.  I'm leaning towards option one at the moment.  I've got both options out and up on the small design wall, but just haven't been in the sewing room long enough this week to really contemplate either option. That's part of the stitching plan for this afternoon.  

So how did your stitchy week go?  

1. Julie in GA
2. karen
3. Meloney
4. Chrisknits
5. Sherrie
6. Shasta @ High Road
7. DawnyK
8. Amanda
9. Quilting Gail

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Tuesday, September 22, 2020

To Do Tuesday for 09/22/2020

 The weeks continue to just fly by.  It will be October in just over a week.  Definitely time to get moving on any stitching goals that are still hanging out there. I've never been much of a list maker, other than the grocery list.  But there's a good deal of research that shows making a good list can really help with productivity. The weekly list seems to be helping me on that front. All of last week's to do's are all checked off.    

Weekly To Do List for 09/15/2020

  • Red, White & Blue Stars: Find red/white sashing fabric/wash
  • Morewood Mystery:  Continue to sew Clue 3 blocks
  • Unity: Continue to make HSTs and blocks for Step 4
  • 2019 Christmas Mystery: Prep top for quilting

I'm learning to be more realistic about what goes on the to do list. More than anything, that's the reason all the items on the lists for the last three weeks have been full of check marks.  Let's see if I can make it four weeks with a completed To Do List. 

Weekly To Do List for 09/22/2020

2019 Christmas Mystery Quilt: Package and ship out for quilting

The hardest step is done, finding a box that fits.  Actually all that's left is to write the deposit check, seal up the box, write and attach the address label.  The next hardest step is finding time to stop by the post office to get it shipped.  My meeting schedule has to be open enough to let me leave the site for lunch. This week isn't too bad on that front, so it shouldn't be too hard. Plus I'm taking Friday off this week, so I should have time then if not before. 

Morewood Mystery: Finish clue 3 HSTs

All that is left of step 3 is to finish stitching, cutting and trimming these 6 and mark then stitch 4 more of the violet/white square pairs.  That should be fairly easy to accomplish this week.  Clue 4 comes out next Thursday. It would be nice to have this one done before then. 

Red, White & Blue Stars: Decide on the sashing fabric

Last week's to do was to find the sashing fabric purchased for this project.  That's done, but then I decided maybe it wasn't the right print.  A quick trip to the LQS yielded three other options for a total of four.  That was slimmed down to three, but I'm not thrilled by any of them. So there was really no other option than to order one more.  That should be here Thursday.  Fingers crossed that the last one fits the vision, I'd really like to get this quilt off the UFO list this year.  

Unity:  Continue to stitch HSTs and blocks for step 4 

The goal here is to just keep this project moving.  I'd really like to have a finished quilt top by the end of the year. To do that, I'd have to stop before I reach the last clue. The goal at this point is to get to clue 7 and assess if I think it's done at that point.  

That's my list for this week.  You can find more weekly To Do's over at Home Sewn by Us on the To Do Tuesday linky party.  

Monday, September 21, 2020

Just Odds and Ends Sewing

 There was good progress this week, but it's the kind of progress that's not very photogenic.  For example, the payment for quilting on Storm at Sea got mailed last week, so I should see it back here ready to trim and bind by the end of the week.  Along the same lines, I finished the final pressing and clean up of the 2019 Christmas Mystery Quilt.  

2019 Christmas Mystery designed by Carrie Randall (Quilter's Hideaway)

The top is now all folded up and boxed up for shipment to Trudy for quilting.  Not exciting photographically, but it's pretty exciting getting one more quilt that much closer to being finished. 

Unity is up on the big design wall.  

Unity, 2020 Bonnie Hunter Sew-In-Place Quilt Along

The second step 4 border is attached. I had to cut more triangles before continuing with block assembly.  So this project doesn't look much different than it did last week.  

The only other progress has been on getting the quilt label ready for Storm at Sea. 

I asked My Guy to help with the name for the quilt, he said the quilt reminded him of a quiet stream or river.  I may tweak the name and the label a bit before it get's printed, but this is close to final. 

That's it for my quilty activities for the last week.  Linking up with Monday Design Wall and Monday Making.

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Stitching Stuff: Week 38 of 2020

 The weather has been nice, cool in the mornings, warm in the afternoons. It's a good time of year for yard work, which is the plan for this morning. I'm hoping for a full afternoon in the sewing room to get a good start on my stitching time for week 39.  Today will hopefully be a lot more than 15 minutes, which is my goal during the work week.  

A two day sinus headache took a bite out of my stitching time this week. 

  • 15 minute days/week = 5/7 days
  • 15 minute days/September = 17/19 days
  • 15 minute days/2020 = 233/263
  • Success rate = 88.59%

So not a bad week, just not a perfect week on the stitching front. The big focus this week was on figuring out the path forward on my oldest UFO.  I found the sashing fabric in my stash, but now I'm not sure it works as it's not quite the same red as the border fabric.  

But it seems to blend just fine with the blocks and the border when I lay them it out with the border fabric and the blocks.  

I tried some red X's on white.  It looks fine, it just doesn't match my vision for the sashing.  

My plan was to stick with just reds for the sashing and border, but maybe that's not the best option. So I tried print with small red and blue stars. 

Then tried a print with larger red and blue starts. Of the two I like the larger stars.  Of the 4, I like the two red and white prints best. So I may have to pin those up on the design wall this week and think on it a bit. This is the reason the quilt isn't finished, I could never settle on a setting, so it kept getting put away.  Hopefully, that won't happen this time.  

So how did you do this week at finding time to stitch this week?


1. Julie in GA
2. Chrisknits
3. Shasta @ High Road
4. Meloney
5. karen
6. Sherrie
7. DawnyK
8. Quilting Gail
9. Amanda
10. Deana

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Tuesday, September 15, 2020

To Do Tuesday for the Week of 9/15/2020

 It seems that all I did was blink and it's already the middle of September. The year always seems to speed up as it goes along.  Even though it seems like last week passed at warp speed, the To Do List got done.  

Weekly To Do List for 09/08/2020

  • Frolic: Piece backing
  • Morewood Mystery: Continue making clue 3 blocks
  • Unity: Continue making HSTs and clue 4 blocks
  • 2019 Christmas Mystery: Prep back for quilting

After almost a year of making To Do Lists, I've learned that for some projects the goal is to just keep it moving. In that case, I don't need to write the to do item as it has to be finished, just that I'm going to work on it during the week.  It's a lot more satisfying to check off that I did work on it then stress that the step isn't done.  

So what's the plan for this week? 

Weekly To Do List for 09/15/2020

2019 Christmas Mystery: Prep top for quilting

 2019 Christmas Mystery
designed by Carrie Randall (Quilter's Hideaway)

I'm not dreading pressing and dethreading this quilt as much as I did Storm at Sea. For one it's a much smaller quilt and second, the main fabrics don't ravel as much as some of the fabrics used in SAS.  This shouldn't take more than a couple of hours versus the couple of days it took for SAS.  I'd like to have the Christmas Mystery quilt ready to ship out for quilting as soon as SAS is ready to be shipped back.  That should be possible. 

Morewood Mystery:  Keep stitching on clue 3 blocks

Morewood Mystery by Meadow Mist Designs

Clue 3 includes two sizes of HSTs. I finished the larger blue HSTs over the weekend. I'm about half way finished with the smaller violet HSTs.  I till have almost two weeks to finish these off before the next clue comes out. That's definitely doable.  

Unity: Continue making HSTs and blocks for clue 4

Unity, 2020 Bonnie Hunter Sew-In-Place Quilt Along

The second border strip is all pieced, but it needs to be sewn to the top.  That should happen this week. Just two more border strips to make to finish off step 4.  

Red, White and Blue Stars:  Find red&white sashing fabric

Red, White and Blue Stars: Setting self designed

RWB Stars is my oldest UFO.  The blocks were started as part of class on constructing Lone Star blocks that I took way back in 2005.  I finished making all the blocks in July of 2018, but I couldn't decide on a layout.  What's pictured is my last stab at a layout. I'll probably play with a few options on the corner stones and borders, but the sashing will definitely be the blue with a red/white print.  I've purchased the red on white print fabric, but need to locate it in the fabric stash. Hopefully I'll have better luck locating this fabric than I did locating the wide backing I'd already purchased for Storm at Sea.  It would nice to get this project to finished flimsy by the end of the year. I think that's doable. To get it completely finished may be pushing it a bit as there are 4 other quilts in front of it. 

That is the plan for this week.  Linking up with Roseanne at Home Sewn by Us for To Do Tuesday

Monday, September 14, 2020

More Mystery Sewing

We spent the better part of Sunday on garden clean up. The garden looks much better, but I'm moving really slowly this morning.  Hopefully once I'm up and around, the stiffness will dissipate.  There was sewing room time in there too, just not as much as there usually is over the weekend.  Even so, there's been some really good progress on several projects.  

Daisy Chain is now a finished flimsy. 

 Daisy Chain Mystery
2019 Little Bunny Quilts Mystery
by Alison of Honey, Bunny & Doll Design

I like the tan and black borders.  So now I need to find some backing fabric so I can get this quilt ready to go out for quilting once the three in front of it are finished. This is quilt top finish number 7 for 2020. It's also my September OMG.  So I'm making good progress on moving projects along.  

I finished all the larger HSTs for clue 3 from the Morewood Mystery, but I still need to finish the smaller HSTs. 

Morewood Mystery by Meadow Mist Designs

Clue 4 doesn't come out for another week and a half, so I've got time to get those all finished up.  Hopefully this week will be as productive as last week was.  

Linking up with Monday Making and Design Wall Monday. Linking up the September OMG finish linky party over at Elm Street Quilts

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Stitching Stuff: Week 37 of 2020

It's been rainy and cool this week. Saturday was a sunny day, but there was so much smoke in the upper atmosphere the sky was more gray than blue.  The plan this morning is to tackle some fall garden clean up, I'm hoping there's still time at the end of the day to get into the sewing room and kick off a new week by getting in at least 15 minutes of stitching time before bed time tonight.  

It was another good week on the stitching time front for me. 

  • 15 minute days/week = 7/7 days
  • 15 minute days/September = 12/12 days
  • 15 minute days/2020 = 228/256 days
  • Success rate = 89.06%

It's been such a good week in the sewing room that I've already checked off everything on this week's To Do List. So I can either get a start on next week's To Do List or just concentrate on finishing all Morewood Mystery blocks and making progress on Unity.  You can link up at the bottom of the post and share your success or challenges in the sewing room this week. 

I almost forgot last night to pull up the random number generator to identify the winner of the give away from the blogsiversary post. 

So congratulations to Denise from Count it *All* Joy. Denise is a long time blog buddy, so I do have her email address and have already let her know she's the winner. Thank you for helping me celebrate by leaving such great comments. 

You can link up below to share how your sewing week went. Did you mange to get in at least 15 minutes of stitching time on a regular basis this week?  

1. Julie in GA
2. Chrisknits
3. karen
4. Meloney
5. Stitching Loving Nana :)
6. Shasta @ High Road
7. Deana
8. amanda

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Tuesday, September 8, 2020

To Do Tuesday for the Week of 09/08/2020

 Hope everyone in the US had a good holiday weekend.  I took Friday off, so it's that much harder to head back to work this morning. We took it slow this weekend. The Scientist in Training has a pretty hard semester this fall, so she slept a lot and then had homework.  This is her only break till Thanksgiving. The school moved Fall Break to the week of Thanksgiving, so she has that whole week off. That seems so far off but it will be here before you know it. 

Having a four day weekend helped with getting through last week's To Do List.

  • Daisy Chain: Add tan and black borders
  • Morewood Mystery: Start Sept. Clue
  • Frolic: Decide on backing
  • Unity: Continue working on Clue 4

Four out of four is a pretty good week. I'll have to work the rest of the week, so I probably need to be selective about what goes on this week's list. 

Frolic: Piece the backing

This yardage has been in the stash for awhile. It's the right color to go with the quilt top.  Now to figure out what direction the stripes will go, up and down or side to side.  

Morewood Mystery: Continue making clue 2 HSTs

Not sure if this quilt will have pinwheels or not, but both colors would make nice ones.  

Unity:  Make HSTs and blocks for Step 4

I need to cut some more background triangles before I can make many more of the friendship star blocks.  Thankfully, these block are going much faster then step 3 blocks went.   

2019 Christmas Mystery: Press and prep back for quilting

The plan is to have this project ready to go out for quilting before Storm at Sea comes back from being quilted.  That should be doable if I get going on the prep.  

Those are my plans for this week.  Linking up with Home Sewn by Us for To Do Tuesday.  Hope you have a great stitchy week.  

Monday, September 7, 2020

Just Stitching Along

 It's been a very quiet holiday weekend with the family.  The Scientist in Training has been home and we've been hanging out together. She and My Guy spent most of Sunday working in the kitchen together. As a result dinner was topped off with homemade butterscotch bourbon ice cream (it's definitely adult ice cream) and I get home made cinnamon rolls for breakfast this morning. While they played in the kitchen, I got to play in the sewing room. 

I've been doing some clean up and put away in addition to stitching, so not as much progress on the sewing front. But the sewing room really did need a bit of a straighten up.  There has been progress on Daisy Chain, but I didn't get a picture of it. There's been visible progress on Unity.

Unity, 2020 Bonnie Hunter Sew-In-Place Quilt Along

The first step 4 border is finished and sewn on. The second border is almost half way constructed.  These bigger blocks are much faster to make then those little ones in step 3.  

Clue 3 came out for the Morewood Mystery quilt last Thursday. Clue 1 and Clue 2 were the fabric requirements and the cutting instructions respectively. I'm a cut as you go kinda gal, so I didn't cut the fabrics for clue 3 till Friday.  But before cutting I needed to decide which fabrics were A, B, C and D. 

Then I could make a start on cutting the fabrics and making those first blocks. 

I've got all month to finish this clue, so I'm working in a couple HSTs with the stitching on Unity and Daisy Chain.  

I'm hoping for one more day of pretty much nothing but stitching today. We'll see. My Guy is already off for a bike ride and the SIT is still sleeping. She said last night she planned to work on a lab report and finish reading a chapter for one of her classes today before she heads back to school late this afternoon. She won't get another break till Thanksgiving. So there should be some time for stitching today. 

Linking up with Monday Making and Design Wall Monday

Sunday, September 6, 2020

Stitching Stuff: Week 36 of 2020

It's been a slow it down kind of weekend so far. The heat and humidity are back, so it's been nice to just hang out in the house. Actually we were under quarantine the first few days of the week, so going anywhere wasn't going to happen anyway. Getting in my 15 minutes each day has been pretty easy.  How are you doing at working in some stitching time each day?  

I must be on a roll, this is the second week I've managed to stitch all 7 days.  

  • 15 minute days/week = 7/7 days
  • 15 minute days/August = 28/31 days
  • 15 minute days/ September = 5/5 days
  • 15 minute days/2020 = 221/249 days
  • Success rate = 88.76%
So August ended well and September is off to a good start.  I'm still on track with my goal to stitch more than 85% of the year.  

I'm still tracking my stash usage.

  • Fabric used in August = 14.69 yards
  • Fabric used YTD = 46.29 yards
  • More fabric in than out for 2020

The big boost for last month was two quilt backs, one for Storm at Sea and the other for the Christmas Mystery quilt. September should get a boost from the backing for Frolic.  I don't have a goal for stash usage this year. I need to use another 20 yards to exceed my best stash usage year.  That's not likely, but maybe I'll get close.  Linking up with Quiltpaintcreate for the regular stash report.  

You can link up below to share how your stitchy week went.  

1. maggie f
2. Julie in GA
3. Chrisknits
4. Meloney
5. karen
6. Sherrie
7. Shasta @ High Road
8. DawnyK
9. Quilting Gail
10. Amanda
11. Jennifer in Indy
12. Angie in SoCal

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Friday, September 4, 2020

10 Years at Life in Pieces

 Today is Life in Pieces 10 year blogiversary.  It's been ten years of stash reports, design wall Mondays and connecting with some of the most creative, inspiring and fun people. I'd name names, but I'm sure I'd leave someone out. I don't belong to the local guild as they only meet during the week and this working girl isn't able to attend. But I've been so fortunate to have what I've come to think of as my on line guild. There are weekly show and tells, demolish your UFO programs, work down your stash programs, tutorials and my most favorite things the quilt alongs, BOMs and mystery quilts.  

The blog has been a place to record not just the quilty stuff that goes on, but also what's been going on in the rest of my life.  When I started the blog Kiddo (aka the Scientist in Training) was 11 years old. 

Mom (and Dad) spent a lot of time at volleyball practice, volleyball games and volleyball tournaments. There was also swim practice and swim meets in there too.  I have a lot more stitching time these days and I do not miss those o'dark thirty morning rushes to get out the door headed to somewhere for some sporting event. But I do miss the girl now that she's mostly all grown up and off at college.  

While the SIT has changed a lot, my sewing room hasn't changed too much in the last 10 years.

Though it is a great deal messier. 

Maybe because I have more time to hang out there?  We'll go with that explanation. 

So thanks for posting such cool, fun, inspiring stuff. And thank you for hanging out with me, for all the moral support, for all the suggestions, and for all the wonderful comments over the last 10 years. 

It wouldn't be a blogiversary without a give away. So I have this fat quarter bundled of Anthology Batiks from Windham Fabrics to help celebrate. 

Leave me a comment about what you like best about blogging, if you not sure what to write.  I'll pick a winner on Saturday, September 12th and announce it on next week's 15 Minute Challenge post. 

For those in the USA, have a relaxing Labor Day weekend.   

Thursday, September 3, 2020


 What a week!  I'll be glad to see the end of this one.  My Guy is finally feeling much better and thankfully his test came back negative. Thank you for all the moral support and crossed fingers. I'm really looking forward to the holiday weekend. A few days off work will be nice. After this week, a sewing only day is definitely in the cards.  I should decide on my September One Monthly Goal before then.  

Next up on the 2020 Quilt plan is Daisy Chain.  

Daisy Chain Mystery
2019 Little Bunny Quilts Mystery
by Alison of Honey, Bunny & Doll Designs

It just needs two borders added, a tan and then a black, to be a finished quilt top.  I've gotten the first two border strips cut, at least one should be stitched on tonight.  This seems like a simple OMG, but borders always take longer than I think they should. 

I've also been working hard on getting my PHD this year. 

My spreadsheet hasn't changed since July. 

But I've been building momentum on those quilt finishes. Storm at Sea is out for quilting. 

Storm at Sea
Paper Piecing Class by Carrie Randell (Quilter's Hideaway)

The 2019 Christmas Mystery Quilt has a back pieced and ready to go, it just needs to be prepped for quilting.  

2019 Christmas Mystery
designed by Carrie Randall (Quilter's Hideaway)

Finally, Frolic is finished. It just needs a back. 

Frolic, 2019 Bonnie Hunter Mystery Quilt

If I can keep up the momentum, these four should become finishes this year. That won't earn me my PHD, but it's a tie for the most quilts I've finished in a year. I'll take that.  

Linking up with Elm Street Quilts for the September One Monthly Goal and with Quilting Gail for the 2020 PHD.  I hope you'll stop by tomorrow for my 10 year blogiversary.