Friday, December 27, 2019

Best of 2019

It's fun to look back at the end of the year and see some of the projects that were completed and goals that were met. Although 2019 will go down in many books as a year of both good things and bad things (like any year does), I would have to say that for us, personally, it's been a good year.

2019 saw the loss of some friends, a number of medical operations for Bruce (removal of arm sarcomas, with good results each time) and me (carpal tunnel surgery - no more numb hands!) and the removal of our beloved apricot tree.

But we had great times with the family and saw everyone - even those out of state -  at some point in the year. The grandkids are all healthy, happy and growing strong, our adult children all have new (this year) and better jobs, and some even have new homes. We had a banner year with our garden and got several little projects around the house taken care of. We hope that 2020 brings more of the ups and none of the downs!

Before I get to my quilting recap, I'd like to show you the finishes I had this week. Instead of making one huge quilt of the 9" Rainbow Scrap Challenge string blocks, I ended up making two quilts which will be donated to Quilts for Kids.  First is the yellow, orange, pink and red one.

The other is the blues, green and purple quilt. Both measure 40.5" x 49" and were quilted with a loopy design on my machine.  These were Goals #13 and 14 in my 4th Quarter Finish-Along list, which you can see here.

And last but not least is the kitty quilt for our grandcats. It's nothing much to speak of, but used lots of leftover pieces and scraps on both the front and back. It measures about 42x48".

That brings my total quilt finishes to 32 for the year. However, I basted, quilted and bound dozens more for Quilts for Kids, quilts that were pieced by others. Additionally, I made a half dozen kennel quilts for cats, 3 zip pouches, about 8-10 pillowcases, a pressing mat, ironing board cover, pajama bottoms, and dozens of blocks that were either sent to others or are currently residing in my sewing room orphanage. All in all, very productive year!

Oh! Now that my hands are no longer perpetually numb, I have gotten back into embroidery a little. This little dishtowel (which needs a good pressing) was finished on Christmas Morning as Bruce and I listened to The Nutcracker on vinyl. I'll take this little tea towel with us to Arizona in February to give to my sister-in-law.  It was a little pattern and kit I bought about a year ago at a local quilt shop, but I didn't save any of the information once I finished it. I’ve tried searching for it online, unsuccessfully.

Here, then, is a collage of my "Best Nine" quilts of 2019. Actually, they aren't necessarily my best nine, but more my favorite-ish nine.

From top, L-R: "Gumdrops" selvage and fabric tumblers, Red String Stars, Lattice Birds, Saguaro Sunset, Crumbcakes, Blossoms and Spokes, Stringing in the Rain, Newport Butterflies, and Good Fortune.

Honorable Mentions go to Midnight Scrappy Stars and Kitchen Sink - because they were both so much fun to make!!

Have a Happy New Year’s Eve, and I’ll see you in 2020!

Linking up to Scrappy Saturday at Angela’s Rainbow Scrap Challenge.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

So Much Progress (and a Finish) to Share

Another busy week draws to a close, but I'm jazzed because I have something(s) to share with you! Happy Saturday, and welcome!

First, a finish. YAY! I finished the Newport Butterflies quilt for Cousin Kim. The fabric line that we both loved was called Newport, and it contains several butterfly prints. Kimmie loves butterflies. Hence the name Newport Butterflies. I had purchased the fabric in a 10" square stack (a Layer Cake), and cut those in half to make brick-sized pieces that would show off the print. I didn't realize until just now that the pattern echoes the brickwork of our house in the background!

The sashing or "mortar" is Kona Snow, and Newport Butterflies finished at 58x72".  After practicing quilting butterflies a bit, I forged ahead and quilted lots of little butterflies and swirly loops into the quilt.

Like the meandering lines, the butterflies are multi-directional. 

They are cute, but definitely not a consistent size or shape. Do I care? Heck no! They are different, just like in nature. I know Kim will love them.

Newport Butterflies was my OMG (One Monthly Goal) for December. That makes 12 of my 12 monthly goals finished for this year! Woo-hoo! That is such a happy thing for me, especially given all our challenges this year. And it shows that sewing is definitely my happy place and keeps me grounded when the world is going crazy around me (or is the world just fine and I'm the one going crazy?) Anyway, I'm linking up to Elm Street Quilt's OMG Finish-Along post. This was also my finished goal #3 for the 4th Quarter Finish-Along. My goal list is HERE.

I made a couple zip pouches for sweet friends. One of them I forgot to get a picture of before gifting it this week. But the other one is stuffed with little gifties and I did get a picture. These are just Bonnae's colors! The zip pouch is sitting on a newly-sewn ironing pad made from a couple of fat quarters.

The ironing pad is two-sided. This print above was a quilty cheater cloth that I picked up for a song on this year's quilt Shop Hop. The other side, shown below, is a wild purple fishy print which was a fat quarter I ordered from Spoonflower last year. It's laying on my newly-covered ironing board pad. Yep, I've been busy!

And speaking of Spoonflower, I couldn't resist their 50% off fat quarters earlier this month, so I bought the two shown below. The cannabis print is to make into a zip pouch for my brother who imbibes (and lives where that is legal). He's an epileptic who has used marijuana for decades (since we were kids living at home in California where he secretly grew it) to control seizures. Oh, I have stories about those days! Anyway. The other print is just one I fell in love with.

Next in line will be to quilt this little nap quilt (bad shot of partial basted quilt) for the grand cats Xbox and Carl. The size is roughly that of a crib quilt. It will be delivered sometime between Christmas and New Year along with the family gifts when we see them.

And then there is this monstrosity - my rainbow selvage blocks from this year. This quilt top has been sitting in Time Out for a couple months. I was hoping that it would somehow either change itself or that I might grow to like it. Nope. If it weren't already sashed, I would've ripped the large 16-patch blocks into four-patches and started over. But I hate it so much that I'm not willing to invest that time in it. Heck, I'm not even going to add outer sashing. Just quilt up the da** thing and donate it. Bam! Done!

And last but not least (are you still awake?) are the four blocks I stitched for the Block Lotto this month. They are hourglass blocks that measure 6.5". As usual, since my friend Nann and I have been running the Lotto since August to keep it going until year-end, the blocks I make are for donation. It's sad, but the owner of the Block Lotto site has decided not to renew the site. I can't say that I blame her. Interest has fallen off over the years, and she has to pay the site hosting fees. So, this will be the last month for Block Lotto.

* * * * *
ALERT!  I just moved Newport Butterflies from the washer into the dryer. Since this was the quilt's first laundering, I had thrown two color catchers into the wash. As I went to put it in the dryer, I checked the color catchers - only to find out that they weren't color catchers, but dryer sheets! WHAT?!? What is happening to my brain? Didn’t it just get back from vacation? Well, it doesn't look as though any colors bled. Whew! Thank goodness I used good quality fabrics.

* * * * *

As I age, I've learned that I don't enjoy or cope well with all the stress of the Holidays. For us, that's about mid-November through the end of the year. So, we've devised alternate routines and celebrations that let us keep things very low key. Thanksgiving is either just us (and maybe a family member or two who doesn't have plans) or going out to family or restaurant. Christmas gifts are bought here and there all year as something reminds us of someone, or else they get gift cards or money. Wrapping is minimal (a bag?), reusable or given in a card. Decorating is also minimal (bonus: we've been able to donate a couple tubs of "stuff" to charity). Christmas baking this year was a two-fer. I made Bruce's favorite cookies, which I do periodically for him, just in time to serve some for dessert at our family dinner gathering last week. Neighbor gifts are jars of jam that I made last summer. Even the kitties got their gifts early (new beds and catnip toys) when I took advantage of a Chewy coupon a couple months ago. I can't decide if it's my age, or if I'm getting smart or lazy or some combination of all of them. But I rather like the toned-down version of things. It allows more time to enjoy people; friends, family and each other.

I've already shown you the picture of our tiny Christmas tree, but now I'm going to treat you to our menagerie nativity. There is no baby Jesus, although we did find a half walnut shell for his manger. Stay tuned for that next year. In the meantime we have a little soapstone elephant (from last year’s Kenya trip), a wood deer (that I got in Austria in 1970), a dough turkey (made by son Shane in 3rd grade), a see-no-evil monkey, a rooster from Portugal, two marble mice (they're the best kind), a pewter rabbit (Austria, 1970), a one-eared bunny that just wandered in, a wood-carved owl (also Austria, 1970) and a smiling Buddha-like character. Eclectic, irreverent, cute. Just like us!

Thank you for reading my blog and sharing your thoughts and friendship over the year. I truly love and appreciate all of you. I wish you and yours the Happiest of Holidays, whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukah, the Solstice, or whatever else (because I don't know all the holidays, to my shame). May you enjoy good company, love, warmth, peace and plenty.

Monday, December 16, 2019

When Your Brain Goes on Vacation

To be honest, I don't know if my brain has been on vacation or if it was kidnapped. Of course, that would beg the question "Who would want to kidnap it?", which pretty much answers the dilemma. I just wish it had taken me along wherever it went. But it's back now, and apparently ready to get on with blogging and life in general. So I've got a few catch-up things to share.

First, I sewed up my December blocks for the Butterfly Threads Seeing Stars Sew Along over at Diane Knott's blog. This month we're doing pinwheels, which were fun. Here are my blocks:

This is the 4th month of the Sew-Along, and I'm really enjoying it. I originally started out with busy backgrounds for my blocks.  The more I used them, the more I hated them. So this month I re-did a few previous blocks - the worst offenders - using plain Kona white as a background. Much better. Here are the first three months with busy backgrounds.

Before, with too-busy backgrounds
And here are the four months' worth, having replaced a lot of the square-in-a-square backgrounds with plain white and adding this month's pinwheels:

After, with mostly-fixed backgrounds

Four of those churn dash blocks (two in the bottom row and the two blue ones in rows above them) are likely candidates for some plain white background transplants next month! 

This past weekend I also finished my Block of the Month for December for our local quilting shop's (Nuttall's) BOM class. This used a Mini Quick Curve Ruler for the petals, and I really enjoyed making these. The right one was made with the fabrics they gave us, and the left one is made from stash. 

These are all four of my BOMs with their fabric so far:

And these are my extra blocks, which will eventually make a kid's quilt for donation. Note that there was no way on earth I was going to do all those little half-square triangles again. I did a giant red nine-patch instead.

I also wanted to show you the quilt that Cousin Kim made for her son-in-law for Christmas. He is a graphic designer by trade and a disc jockey by hobby. This was a pattern from our local Shop Hop from a few years ago. The pattern had a lot of mistakes that Kim had to puzzle out and fix. You can see some spacers she had to add to the center of the two side borders.

I had the pleasure of quilting it: a cross-hatch in the center portion and a basic stipple in the outer border. 

My Christmas sewing is mostly complete; I just have to sew up a back for the quilt for Cousin Kim, then baste, quilt and bind it. I'll have a progress report on that this weekend. It's really the only thing left on my Christmas list. How is your Christmas sewing and shopping going? 

This week is mostly free of obligations, other than a doctor check-up for Bruce's arm. It's probably too early to get all the stitches out, but at least he may progress out of the monstrous splint he's in.   

Friday, December 6, 2019

Red Strings Finish and December OMG

This week just got away from me, and I didn't get nearly as much sewing done as I wanted to. First, a dear friend B's husband died over Thanksgiving weekend. There are no words. We (Bruce, me and Cousin Kim) went to visit her one day, as we all spent a lot of time together on sewing days. The emotions of a friend passing just knocks one for a loop. Then Bruce's MRI and cat scan came back and there is another spot of cancer in his arm - in the soft tissue just above where the previous surgeries were done last August. So, he has another surgery scheduled on Monday. The good news is that his lungs are clear, and this sarcoma is in an area where they can take it and the surrounding soft tissue (hopefully) without further maiming his arm. And it's not near a bone. We're all thinking it's a one-surgery procedure without having to do tissue transplants or even grafts. Fingers crossed. This is surgery #14 since 2010 on his right arm. 

So, retreating to the sewing studio was a nice, if altogether too brief, respite. I quilted up the Scrappy Red Stars quilt, and bound it with the backing red check fabric.  

I just did a simple, mindless stipple, because that was all I had in me by then; the previous day I'd quilted two quilts (one large, one small) for Cousin Kim. No pictures yet of those. Anyway, this darling quilt (even if I do say so myself) is so cheery! It finished at 36.5" x 48.5", and will be donated to Quilts for Kids.

The red check background is fun, too. I almost hate to give this one away. And since red is Bruce's favorite color, he really loves it. But I'll make him another one in red that's more his size. As Bruce says, they'll make more red fabric!

Scrappy Red Stars was basically an unplanned (squirrel!) project, so I don't get to cross anything off my Finish-Along list.

I also sewed up my Block of the Month block for the local quilt shop class. It's 12.5".

I didn't make any progress on the quilt I'm making for Cousin Kim for Christmas. But since she can't come over on Wednesday for sewing, I'll have time to work on this that entire day.  I'm selecting this quilt - Newport - as my OMG (One Monthly Goal) for December. I plan to get it completely finished from sewing the top together, to basting it, quilting, binding, labeling, photographing and gifting it!

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Last Week of November

Did you have a nice Thanksgiving (for those of you here in the US)? We were with extended family on Bruce's side. There were 21 of us, and it was a blast. It snowed lightly on Thursday, but kindly held back until yesterday to dump several inches on us. But it's beautiful, and it's the perfect time of year, so we welcome it!  

As for my hands/carpal tunnel surgery, I got the stitches removed from both wrists on Wednesday. It's been 2 weeks now, and I'm pretty much fully healed incision-wise. My hands aren't numb any longer, except a small part on 2 fingertips, and the doctor says that should go away in the next few months. I am bearing good weight and pressure on them now, and have resumed all my normal activities without problems.  I even plan to pin baste three quilts this weekend with the help of Cousin Kim.

Speaking of weight, I've been actively working the Weight Watchers plan again after just see-sawing around a few-pound weight range over the last 18 months. Actually, I'd gained back about 9 of the 35 pounds I lost a couple years ago. But now 8 of those extra pounds are gone, and I was mindful of my Thanksgiving eating. I even planned for a piece of pumpkin pie and enjoyed that! Now it's time to get serious and tackle the final 25-35 pounds over the first half of 2020. I do plan to make (and partake of some) almond biscotti during the Christmas holiday season as well as some Kahlua and eggnog (lite). All doable while still losing, if I'm careful. 

But you're here for the sewing, so let's get to that.  Here's the red string star quilt I've been working. I showed a few blocks last week. This week I completed them all - it is so fun to stitch these that I just couldn't stop! This is one of the flimsies (quilt tops) that I'll be basting this weekend.

And a close-up of a a smaller area. I ran out of the solid red, so used a similar red with dots to fill in. I love how it makes the stars look more dimensional.  To keep on top of these multi-colored strings (a lot of which I get from quilting and trimming the quilts I do for Quilts for Kids, I may do a background star - which is 4 blocks - of the Rainbow Scrap color of the month in 2020, and then just use the multi-colored strings around them. I think that might be fun!

This helped make a dent in my string scraps, but I have a whole tote bag of low-volume strings that I want to make into some sort of string quilt. That idea will be put off until 2020, though, as I have some Christmas projects (zip pouches) projects that beckon.

And I'm currently working on this project for Cousin Kim for Christmas (she doesn't read my blog).

It was a layer cake (10" squares) of a line called Newport that she and I both fell in love with and bought. She made her squares into a quilt for herself, but her daughter Sarah loved it so much that Kim gave it to her. So I'm using my Newport fabric to make a quilt for Kim. The prints are big and colorful, so I wanted to find a pattern that would allow the prints to shine through without being chopped up too much. I'll sew on it today in hopes of finishing off the top. Then I can hide it while Kim is here sewing on Sunday.

Before we put the cat's play tree back into the guest bedroom after the painting that we had done, it was sitting out in our upstairs hall. Alfie "re-discovered" what fun it was to play on it while us mere mortals walked past. He could roll around, hide, swipe playfully at us - what great fun!

And finally, Bruce put up the tree. It's tiny, because we didn't know how our respective hands would be this year after all our surgeries, and we didn't want to try to haul up containers and bins of things to decorate. Anyway. Bruce says it's The Best Tree Ever. The Best Tree He's Ever Had in His Whole Life! He picked it out at the grocery store, bought little tiny LED lights, raided the Christmas decorations for the tiny ornaments (including a bird from the 1950's), and added a crocheted star at the top. The lights are battery operated. You'd think he was a 10-year old with an early Christmas present.

Now all we have to do is take down all the autumn decorations and beef up the the Christmas decor with a few choice decorations. That's on the agenda for today. But, that tree! (wink)

Linking up to Scrappy Saturday for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Whining and Sewing

It’s been a different sort of week here at Chez Kizerian. I’ve felt as though I’ve been walking through water; everything is slower and more resistant than usual. Relatively speaking, carpal tunnel surgery (even on both hands simultaneously) is minor in the grand scheme of things. But it gets so damn frustrating when you can’t do the things you want. Bruce has to pour my coffee when the pot is full and he has to cut our apples at snack time. Those are only a couple examples out of dozens that I could name. Two days ago I reached to pull open the door of the dishwasher without thinking, and the sharp pain in my right palm nearly brought me to my knees. I think maybe I should’ve taken the pain meds and ibuprofen a few days longer than I did (which was 4 days). Finally I did take one last night and slept almost 11 hours, which I needed. But the boring days pass. I’ve done a little sewing, lots of reading and Netflix watching. My stitches come out on Wednesday and at least I'll be able to drive as I gradually ease back into bearing weight and pressure on my hands.

So, enough of my whining. Really, all is well and I shouldn’t be complaining. This, too, shall pass. The silver linings are that I don’t have to fix the turkey for Thanksgiving and my hands aren't numb anymore!

We hired some painters to come in this week and they painted the doors, trim and ceiling in our guest bedroom. The previous owners had an eighties gray and maroon color scheme in that room with duck hunting wallpaper. I steamed off the wallpaper in the first year we lived here (15 years ago) and painted the room yellow. But I had left the gray ceiling and baseboards, etc. Painting all the trim white has been on my to-do list for ages. Finally I realized that we can afford to hire it out and save wear and tear on the ol’ body parts at the same time. It looks beautiful!

Studio wall repainted
While they were here, we had them paint one wall of my studio where the white paint was peeling off the old dark paneling. Now that is fresh and clean too. It did necessitate emptying out all my fabric storage (Cousin Kim helped) and moving some drawers and things into another room and then back again (Bruce did that). But that is all put back together now. In the process, I rearranged things and re-discovered some old fabric friends.

But despite everything else going on (or not going on, depending on how you look at it), I did get some sewing in. Cousin Kim trimmed up the pink and green quilt for me, and I was able to bind it. It’s a finish, and this my OMG - One Monthly Goal - for November. I’m linking  up to Patty's November OMG finish link-up party.

The back is print that came from this line of fabric. It's a sweet little floral.

I’m calling it Dogwoods for Karen, as this quilt top (minus the border) was purchased at that huge estate fabric sale I attended a few weeks ago. The deceased was a quilter named Karen, so I thought it would be nice to finish it in her honor. The flowers are dogwoods. The quilt finished at 49x61" and will be donated to Quilts for Kids.

Here's a  closeup of some of the quilting - and a bonus; cat hairs! No quilt is complete without them. But don't worry, we wash all the quilts before donating them.

Dogwoods for Karen was Goal #4 on my 4th Quarter Finish-Along list, which you can see HERE.

I’ve also worked on some string blocks for another future donation quilt. SQUIRREL!! I have several more pressing projects to work on for Christmas gifts, to say nothing of at least 3 Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilts to finish, but they were all buried under the piles of fabric for days while we had the painting done. So the string project sort of floated to the top of the list. They’re easy and fun and they scratched my sewing itch. Here are 16 blocks  (6.5" each, unfinished) slapped up on the design board.

Finally, I finished off the three pillowcases for some of the grandkids. I have five other finished ones from earlier in the year, so all the littles will get one as a stocking stuffer.

Linking up to Rainbow Scrap Challenge.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Quick Update

I had hoped to do a quick, pre-surgery update post on my quilting projects before going in for carpal tunnel surgery (both hands) on Thursday. But Wednesday was sewing day here with Cousin Kim, Bonnae and new friend Shanna. It was a busy, chatty day and by the time dinner rolled around, it was all I could do to get the final preparations done for Bruce to handle things around here post-surgery.

The carpal tunnel surgery was routine and we were home by 11:00 a.m.  Having gotten to the surgical center at O'dark thirty, it wasn't surprising that I had a piece of toast when we got home and then took a 3-hour nap. I've been following doctors orders by keeping my hands iced and elevated, and the surgical numbness is mostly gone and there has been no swelling. There's a bit of pain (more of a dull ache), but it's a piece of cake compared to what the pre-surgery pain was. We took off the gauze and ace wraps yesterday afternoon, and under them on both hands are the water-tight bandages covering the wrist where the arthroscopic incisions were made. I can shower with these with no problem. I go back the day before Thanksgiving to have the stitches out. In the meantime, I can't lift anything heavier  than a couple pounds. I think I'll be able to start sewing this weekend, but using the rotary cutter is probably out for a week or two.

So, let me show you what I got accomplished between last week's post and Wednesday, before surgery.

Not much to see here. This simple blue, navy and green quilt is for the grand-kittens. It's pinned on the design board over another quilt, so just ignore that pink. I will be sewing up a backing for this later in the month and then probably spray basting and quilting it. At least, that's the plan.

Next up are four blocks I made for this month's Covered in Love drive.

And I managed to add a border to this quilt top that I found at the estate sale last month. Then I basted and quilted it. I'll have to have Cousin Kim trim it for me when she's over on Sunday!

I quilted it with light pink thread in a blowsy floral design. 

Once the batting is trimmed away and the backing is trimmed down to a 1" border around it, I can sew the all-in-one binding over and attach a label. This will be my OMG (One Monthly Goal) for November, so it's looking likely that it'll be done easily by month-end.

Finally, I stitched up my blocks for Step #3 of the Seeing Stars sew-along at Butterfly Threads Quilting. This month's blocks (8 for me) were simple hourglass 6" blocks.

And here are all the blocks together so far. We will have larger blocks coming, and rectangular blocks of flying geese and checkerboards coming as well. Those lighter greens don't photograph well, but they do look nicer in real life.

I've got several easy sewing projects lined up for this week, beginning in a day or two when I start feeling like myself again. Yesterday and today were dedicated solely to rest and recovery and being lazy; napping, watching movies, reading, taking care of my hands, and getting lots of loving from Bruce and the kitties. Darla has been by my side consistently for two days.

I'll link up to Scrappy Saturday when I get back from my Block of the Month Club on Saturday morning.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

The Kitchen Sink

It's a finish - my second and final (for this year) quilt from my dark neutral scraps. It was my goal to get this one done by the weekend, and I squeaked by, finishing it yesterday afternoon.

I deliberated (too long) on a name for this quilt, which is totally ridiculous since it's always been intended as a donation quilt. So here is "Kitchen Sink", a quilt of leftover bits and pieces from my browns, tans, grays and blacks.

As usual, without a quilt holder I pinned up the top part on my design wall and let the bottom fall wonkily. In real life, it measures a consistent 50x60".  While designing this quilt, I couldn't decide on which block or blocks I wanted to make, or what size. Finally, after listing several of my favorite blocks (that were simple - no Burgoyne Surrounded blocks here!), I divided them up into those that worked best with a 6" finished size (9-patch, rails, Friendship Stars, etc.) and those that worked best at 8" finished size (Double 4-patch, Puss in the Corner and the Windmills). And since 8 six-inch blocks is the same width as 6 eight-inch blocks, 48" became the width I'd use (before sashing).

Then I went through my scraps and matched up their sizes to the block components necessary. The largest pieces went into the Snowball blocks (6.5"), then I used my 4.5" pieces in the Puss in the Corner blocks, the double 4-patches, and on down the line. I tried to mix gray, black, brown and beige into every row.  Every couple rows or so got a 1.5" black sashing strip to prevent it all looking like mush.

I wanted to do custom quilting on each row, then came to my senses when I remembered that this is just a donation quilt. Unfortunately, I had the not-so-brilliant idea to practice my swirls, which are badly in need of practice. It took me three sessions (of an hour or two each) to quilt it. What was I thinking? Anyway, I learned that the faster I went with the swirls, the better they looked. Not that that's saying much. There are still boatloads of wobbles.

And I am SO over variegated thread. That is, I'm over buying it; I still have a couple spools-worth to use up. I used the variegated on the top and finished three partial spools of various gray threads on the back.

This is a picture of (most of) the back. I had one extra 9-patch and some other blocks from leftover half-square triangles, so I pieced those into the center column.

This side backing fabric is a piece I bought about 18 months ago on sale.  I adore it, both the print and the colors. It was always intended to be a backing for my scrappy dark neutrals, but I didn't buy enough.

Here's a close-up of the blocks pieced into the back with the Quilts for Kids label.

Where the yummy graphic fabric came up short, I inserted this linen-look cotton-poly blend fabric. About a year ago, when daughter Stacy and her family moved into their new house, she asked me to hem some curtains for her.  This was the what I cut off and saved. The texture really shows off the quilting.

So, because I used so many scraps and patterns on the front, leftover blocks and curtain cut-offs on the back, several partial spools of thread..... you probably can understand why I'm calling it Kitchen Sink.

Kitchen Sink was not only a Rainbow Scrap Challenge project (and I'm linking up to Scrappy Saturday), but also Goal #12 on my 4th Quarter Finish-along list, which you can see here. It was listed there as "Winter Patchwork".

This coming week is going to be interesting. On Tuesday I'm getting my "annual" (it seems) cortisone shot in my right shoulder. And then Thursday, well that's the big day - carpal tunnel surgery in both hands. Actually, I'm not expecting it to be bad. Yes, they knock you out, but it's an arthroscopic procedure done by making a half-inch incision at the wrist. There will be bandages, and I do have wrist braces if necessary. I hope to be sewing again (not pin basting) by the weekend. We'll see. In the meantime, my sewing goals prior to surgery are:

1.   Add outer border to OMG (One Monthly Goal) quilt top, then pin baste it. Maybe quilt and bind it if there's time.
2.   Make my block (and an extra one) for my Block-of-the-Month (BOM) class this month
3.   Make the 8 hourglass blocks for the Seeing Stars sew-along at Butterfly Threads Quilting.
4.   Make progress on the kitty quilt for my grand kittens, Carl and Xbox. They are about 5 months old now. Carl is gravely ill, and we are hoping that there is a cure. More tests this week.

My hope is to do a mid-week post with progress pictures.

And to close on a bright note, here are five Evening Sunset blocks that I made for the November Block Lotto. That link leads you to the introductory post and tutorial for these blocks. They're 6.5" (unfinished).