Saturday, September 30, 2023

First Week of Autumn

It was another busy week of “spinning plates”. Don’t you feel as though your life is sometimes a circus act? Please tell me I’m not alone in this, LOL.

The garden is waning and slowly coughing up the last of the cucumbers, peppers and tomatoes. But last Tuesday, I still had two whole baskets-full of surplus produce to take to my Weight Watchers meeting. Going forward, it will now dwindle to one basketful per week, and then end when I pick all the green tomatoes before the frost, which will likely happen in the second half of October. 

A couple days ago I roasted/steamed all my poblano peppers from my single very prolific plant. They are now all skinned and sliced and waiting to go into a casserole I’m going to put together with the chiles, cheese, chicken, tortillas and eggs. I’ve got it narrowed down to a couple recipes, so wish me luck! 

We’ve pretty much ignored the grape arbor this year, although a couple neighbor kids have enjoyed some that we picked for them. The birds (and bees and wasps) are getting the rest. We’ll have it all trimmed down when our arborist comes to do his annual tree and bush pruning in a couple weeks. 

All this talk of food is making me hungry, so we better move on to the topic of sewing...

I finished my blocks in Aqua (plus teal, turquoise, etc), September’s color in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge

Three Split Nine blocks at 6.5”

Seven crumb blocks at 6.5” (pinned so close together that they may look like a single block!)

For the Christmas Stars quilt, I sewed 26, that’s TWENTY-SIX (yes, I’m excited!!) of the little stars this week. Here they are, combined with all their friends. My total is now 63, and with 16 red squares already cut to eliminate some sewing, I only need to sew 10 more to reach the total count of 89. Easy Peasy!! (Thanks for the encouragement, Chantal!)

So, once I finish the ten stars, I’m giving myself a couple weeks to assemble the top. I have the “road map” for assembly at the ready!

Another project I hope to begin in October and continue through the end of the year is a Finishing Frenzy! If that sounds familiar, it’s because I did it last year. As part of the Finishing Frenzy, I’m repeating a sub-goal of knocking back some of my multi-colored strips. These are the ones that didn’t make it into my scrap bins that are sorted by color. With copious donations from Kat (cuttings from quilt backs for Covered in Love) and donations from our local Quilts for Kids chapter, and my own scraps, the strings have outgrown their large beach/book bag (the green and pink flamingo bag). Time to do some string sewing!

That pile is seven inches deep! The bag and my Bernina give an idea of scale. I’m hoping to cull some wider scraps out of the mess, like that black and bright swirly print in front. I’m collecting a lot of those to cut into various sized “bricks” for some future (but as yet unplanned) project. 

Last October my goal was to sew 300 string blocks, but I was only (“only” - hah!) able to churn out 180, plus 45 blocks of green strings. This year, my personal String Challenge will run all quarter as part of my Finishing Frenzy. Target Number: 400 (go big or go home, eh?) Along with the strings, I hope to finish an ample list of Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilts from the blocks of the last couple of years.  I want to clear the decks and start fresh in 2024!

Will you be finishing quilts for this last calendar quarter? Do you have strings laying around, yelling at you? You are most welcome to join in on the String Challenge and/or Finishing Frenzy if you are crazy enough!  Muahahahahahaha........

See you next week! xo


  1. I will tell you that you are not alone in the circus! The compacted teal blocks look great that way. I know you'll tame that scrap mountain.

  2. You have an amazing garden, Cathy! Enjoy that casserole you're talking about. Beautiful aqua/teal blocks! I'm going to attempt one more finish this year - a several years old RSC top that's been patiently waiting its turn. Good luck with your finishing and string block goals!

  3. I'm on a kick to finish, or at least move a project on to the next phase. I came across a box of 4Ps that will finish at 4" that I plan to put up for grabs at our next Devo group gathering. Too many scraps, too little time!

  4. Finishing Frenzy--I'm in! My goals will be a little less than yours lol. I do have a bunch of UFOs and block sets to clear out. Love the string pile, it's like the scraps that ate New York!

  5. Oh yes, Spinning Plates Syndrome is real!! We have been dealing with that this past week--topped off with over 5" of rain and a leaking roof by our tv room chimney!! Aaargh!!
    Hoping for a quiet, restful weekend.
    I love your Aqua "thing/crumb" quilt--so neat. I haven't done one of those in a long time...
    Really? 400? string blocks??? You go, girl;))) hugs, Julierose

  6. Yes, I have lots of strings and other scraps of all kinds. I wish I liked making string blocks, but they take me so long to make (so do crumb blocks). I can't seem to just grab a piece add it on. I have scraps stored so many ways and in so many places, I just want to dump them all in a great big bag (or 2) and give them all away. And I won't even talk about the UFOs.

  7. I hear you loud and clear. Spinning plates, circus monkeys, you name it! I am feeling very overwhelmed with mu "stuff"! Hope you will show a first example of your string frenzy. Multi colored ,if not single colored. then it doesn't matter what goes next to what , right? I need to tame my multi colored boxes too. Sometimes it's hard to know if a fabric is yellow or gold, pink or peach, red or maroon..And then there are those novelty prints!! What color are they really??? Questions? Questions? Keeping you in my "thoughts and prayers" as you tackle MT Scrapmore!!! LOL!

  8. I follow you but seldom comment. But your Christmas stars are really pulling me- next year I think. My goals this month are to finish up fall projects so I can concentrate on getting my Christmas quilt done for our bed - a 3 year project- and then maybe strings for next year!


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