Napping is NOT over-rated...

At some point a witty saying will materialize here. Right here. Watch for it.

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April 2014
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April 11, 2014

Cat Bullet

Weekend plans??

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 9:19 am

Well, there is a “One Stop Quilt Shop Hop” up in Loveland Colorado this weekend. A whole bunch of quilt shop owners all setting up displays in a big convention center. I’m going to stay home, sadly. Well, happily for my bank account, I guess.**

** I’m not as virtuous as it sounds. The Denver National Quilt show is going to be held the first weekend of May and I am definitely going to that one!!!

The weather is supposed to degrade a little bit this weekend, so I think it will be a good time to huddle in my basement and work on my Bonnie Hunter quilt project. I’ve been working on housecleaning/tidying/laundry chores during the evenings this week, so hopefully, I won’t have to do too much of those.

Let’s have a contest, shall we? How many quilt blocks do you think I will get made this weekend?

To help make your guesses more “educated”, I’ll provide the following information.

1. I have all of the individual units made that will be used to make the blocks.
I think. I keep getting weird counts on the units I am using to make “block A”, so I may have to back track a bit.

2. So far, I have made 38 out of 60 Block A (the “54-40 or fight” blocks I talked about earlier). I need to make 36 of what I’m currently calling “Block B” and 25 of what I’m currently calling “Block C”. All of the A, B and C blocks are made by sewing together nine premade units – all straight seams, no angles. The units are “sorted” for all of the remaining Block As (i.e. no two units with the same fabrics); they are not sorted for the Blocks B and C. Those who are aware of my um, “nit picky” nature will be aware that the sorting process can be quite time consuming.

3. The only activity that I currently have planned this weekend is my usual Saturday morning physical training session at the gym. So that gives me Friday night, most of Saturday and all day Sunday to work.

Leave a comment and let me know how many blocks that you think I will make over the weekend. The person who guesses the closest to the actual number will win a small prize (to be determined by the identity of the winner).

Everybody have a super great weekend!!

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April 3, 2014

Cat Bullet

ipad fun!

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 4:30 am

I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve not really played with all of the functions of my ipad. Therefore, I present for your enjoyment… “Kalidocat!”

Kalidocat

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March 31, 2014

Cat Bullet

Spring Break Progress

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 9:26 am

Last week was my Spring Break. I had a nice visit with a Bermuda friend to start out the week. I took her up to the mountains so she could practice her skiing, and we also went to the Wild Animal Sanctuary! What a really neat place (with lions, and tigers and bears and wolves…)

After Rachel left, though, I buckled down and really worked hard on my Bonnie Hunter Celtic Solstice quilt.

It took me about 2 and a half days to finish the dastardly “Clue 5″ blocks. They were really frustrating… Then it was time to start making the big blocks.

The first big block is called “54-40 or Fight”, according to Bonnie. I know that is a history reference, but I can’t remember what it is. I’ll have to go google it…

I think that the blocks are coming out really well…
54-40 or fight

This is the time when all of my care and redoing of the blocks to make them as perfect as possible is going to pay off. So far, every block has gone together with relatively few problems (once I got the hang of lining up the white points…).

So far, I have 38 done (out of a required 61).
38 done!
Note: This is not what the quilt is going to look like – this is just the collection of one of the three types of blocks that I’m going to make. They do show kind of an interesting secondary pattern, though, don’t they?

Putting them all up on the design wall is starting to show me how big this quilt is going to be – the 61 blocks will be approximately one half of the quilt…

this sucker is going to cover the WORLD!!

ETA: Information from my Mom about 54-40 or Fight…

I grew up with the 54 -40 or fight statement because of living in Washington State.

The slogan, ’54/40 or fight’ originated during a dispute between the United States and Great Britain over the Oregon country.

Great Britain wanted the Oregon territories and so did we. The 54/40 is the latitude we almost went to war over.

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March 17, 2014

Cat Bullet

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 9:01 am

Celtic Cross

Happy St. Patrick’s day!

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March 10, 2014

Cat Bullet

150 (ish)

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 9:23 am

Shetland ponies in Ireland
Random image from Ireland… Shetland Ponies at the Irish National Stud

Well here we are, and I feel like I’m already running late. I really don’t like time changes…

I’m up to 150 (ish) of the Clue 5 blocks. I need 244 done. They are very slow, but I seem to finish them up in big batches (it is a production line thing). Slow and steady, I guess. The prewashed section was starched and ironed and then mixed in to the general population. I think it looked pretty good after its adventures, so if I can’t pick it out at a later time, then I was successful in my cleaning attempts. I gues we will just have to see.

We had a pleasant outing yesterday – we went to Golden for a nice lunch and then we tried to see a quilt show at the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum. Unfortunately, they were conducting a special event that afternoon, so we didn’t get to see the quilts. The poster was nice… I think we will have to try again some time. We visited the local quilt store, with mostly “Meh” results. I did find a really pretty red batik (with a pattern of poppies and birds) but there was a fair amount of mud/dirt on it. I’m going to have to wash it before I can use it. I also found a neat blue print. I’m pretty proud of myself that I limited myself to two 1/2 yard cuts!

Ah well, I hope everyone had a good weekend.

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March 7, 2014

Cat Bullet

Update

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 11:07 am

Well, once the quilt piece was completely dried and taken off of the linen/grey towel it was drying on…. it became bright white again. I still haven’t taken it downstairs to measure it to see if it stretched during the washing process, but one little step at a time.

Last night, when I could have been sewing, I was tracking down every electronic item in my house to figure out what was beeping. Three fire alarms and four alarm clocks later it was located…

Can someone explain to me why a carbon monoxide detector that plugs into an electrical outlet needs a 9Volt battery also? Very annoying.

Ah well, the batteries are all replaced and Purrcy can come out from under the bed now. He hated that beeping sound.

So did I, but I don’t fit under the bed so well anymore…

Everybody have a great weekend and remember the (absurdly early) time change!

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March 5, 2014

Cat Bullet

Hmmmm…

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 10:43 am

Here is a statistics problem for you…

Assume that you are working on a quilt project with Blue, Orange, Yellow, Green and White fabrics. Also assume that there are pins involved.

What are the chances that, upon scratching your finger with a pin, you will bleed on any of the darker colored fabrics OR on any of the squares that are easily pieced??

The answer is, as I proved yesterday: Absolutely zero.

GAAAAHHH!!! I felt the pin scratch and I did check my finger and it didn’t seem to be bleeding. The next thing I know, there is a red spot, smack dab in the middle of a white piece in a Clue 5 block. The hardest block in the whole quilt. I ran it upstairs and tried to gently wash it, but it looks a little dingey now. I’ll have to wait and see how it looks after it is starched and pressed, I guess. But I’m not holding out much hope.

And I’m really really really really REALLY trying hard not to think too much about what will happen when I wash the whole quilt…

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February 19, 2014

Cat Bullet

Celtic Solstice progress report

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 10:26 am

Here is my Celtic Solstice progress report, as of last night (and with pictures!!)

I have been “storing” the finished block parts on a card table in my basement.

Mid February progress

I’ve labeled the different piles so you can see my progress. There are a LOT of pieces on this table. I’ve not calculated the total yet, but I’ll do that when I’m done. I’m not sure I want to know at this point.

*on an unrelated note, for some reason, the word “clue” looks really wrong when it is written in all capital letters…

I have these aluminum casserole/buffet dishes that I got at Costco. They are very useful for keeping pieces together, and then I can stack up the pans when I need my table space. For example, this pan holds all of the pieces that were made in Clue 1 (the dish is about 4 inches deep, or so, so there are a lot more than it looks like in this picture).

Clue 1

There is one pan where I collected the corner trimmings from Clue #2. I’m not sure if I’m really going to keep them – they are very small. But I can’t seem to bring myself to throw them away, so for now, they are in a pan. I actually kind of enjoy fluffing them up with my fingers and thinking about what I could use them for…

I’m working on Clue 5 now. They are REALLY HARD!!! They don’t look hard, do they? But those diagonal (bias) edges are really giving me problems with keeping them straight. I’ve had to redo a bunch of them more than once, and I’m also resorting to lots of spray starch and “looking the other way” when some of the corners don’t come out very well. My grandmother alwasys said “It will never show on a trotting horse” and I’m sticking to that.

As of last night, I have 61 done (out of 244 needed). I’m not sure where the extra one showed up from, I thought I was working on them in groups of 10. However, I’m not going to complain about the fact that I have one less to do!! Clue 5 uses the extra orange/yellow half square triangles that are in the pan labeled “Clue 3B”, so as soon as that pan gets empty, then I’ll be done with Clue 5.

I’m really enjoying this project, but I think I’m just going to have to accept the fact that I’m not going to finish by the end of this month (which was my unofficial goal). I guess I’m just going to have to relax and enjoy the process.

One more “glamor shot”. I’m definitely going to enjoy the combination of all of these colors when the quilt is done.

Close up

Is anyone else working on fun long-term projects???

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February 5, 2014

Cat Bullet

further adventures in housecleaning

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 3:21 pm

“Out, damned spot! out, I say!”

I’ve been getting Shakespearian on my carpet. Progress is being made.

I went to Lowes and got a room sized kit of the “Capture” carpet cleaning system. This is what I used on the whole house when I moved in. At that point, it was successful in getting out ground in spaghetti sauce, macaroni, candle wax and other (thankfully unidentifiable) stains left by the previous owners. I mainly quit using it because it does tend to clog up a vacuum cleaner.

However, desperate times call for desperate measures. I’m glad that I made the trip out – by the time I finished misting on the “pre-spray”, the stain had already faded noticeably. I applied the powder and scrubbed it in several times over the course of the evening. I let it dry overnight (and all of the rest of the next day) and vacuumed it up when I got home. I was fairly pleased with the result. There was only a faint shadow of the stain remaining, along with three spots that were still dark. I repeated the premist/sprinkle and scrub procedure and will vacuum it up again when I get home tonight. I’m also going to try to do one half of the main traffic pattern area, since I have cleaning material left. Tomorrow night, I’ll do the other half.

Don’t I have an exciting life? Aren’t you glad that my knitting/quilting blog has expanded its subject matter to include housecleaning???

Hey, at least I’ve spared you pictures of all of this.

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February 3, 2014

Cat Bullet

Monday morning!

Filed under: It's a Cat's Life — Cat @ 11:29 am

We shall not speak of the disappointment of yesterday.

Nor shall we speak of my weekend attempt to clean my main floor carpets which resulted in the spreading of an alarmingly large stain in the center of my living room, a ghastly two day drying time and two really freaked out kitty cats (the furniture MOVED!!!!! The floor is WETTTT!!!! It is the END OF THE WORLD!!!).

Let us focus on the positive, shall we???

Yesterday, I finished the Bonnie Hunter Clue 4 (300 orange and green four patch squares). All except for ironing 60-70 of the little blocks, but that won’t take much time to complete.

I’ve already started cutting some of the pieces needed for Clue 5; in addition, it uses extra half-square triangles that we made back in Clue #3. So, I’m making progress. Clue 6 was the final clue, so I’m moving along nicely. I’d really like to have it finished by the end of the month, we will have to see how that goes. Clue 5 looks a little finicky (like Clue 2), but I will just have to take it slowly and carefully.

I can’t wait to have this project to the point where I can start putting together the big blocks. Then I’ll have something to photograph and show you guys. Suffice it to say that I have a card table in my studio that is full of aluminum casserole dishes stacked high with clue pieces…

Everybody have a happy Monday!! The Olympics start soon, so that will be fun. After that, the Rockies will be starting Spring Training. First Pitch will be here before we know it!

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