Thursday, January 31, 2008

Road2CA Slideshow

Do you watch American Idol? We do. I finally figured out how to do a slideshow and put this together last night while watching AI. So grab a cup of java (or whatever you like) and Enjoy!

Road 2 CA - 2008

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Girl Scouts Cookies

YES!! It is that time of the year again! Hannah is selling GS cookies that started last weekend. The new flavor this year is the Cinna-Spins (bottom right). It tastes just like cinnamon rolls! We had samples at the Cookie Rally from a couple of weeks ago. All the girls in the troop loved it. I had a couple of girls who kept asking to go back to the samples table to taste test these cookies. LOL

The troop goal this year is to earn enough money so they can make a trip down to San Diego for a sleepover at Sea World. So that means they have to sell at least 200 boxes of cookies per girl. YIKEs! Now, some girls won't have a problem meeting that goal, but for Hannah, that is a challenge because she is an extremely shy kid.who gets extremely tongue-tied around people. John and I will help, but for most part, she will have to do the work. Poor kid!

Here they are at the Rally at one of the games.

Group photo with the Build-A-Bear Bunny!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

More Road2CA - 2008

Remember when I said that I will put those photos of the quilt show into a slideshow? Well, I did attempted to do it but couldn't figured how. I think I have to use an outside source to do the slideshow then add it onto the blog. But... I've been a bit busy so haven't had a chance to try it. If anyone out there know how to do it, please, please, please, gives me some tips.

Anyhooo, I thought I will share another quilt from the show that I thought was very interesting.
It's a montage! You've seen it before... it's where they take lots of little square photos and collage those photos into another subject.
This quilt is called "Angel of Peace" 69"x84".
It has 11,400 - 3/4" square pictures printed on fabrics then pieced them in blocks, then quilted around each photo square.

Close-up shot.

Then there's this one... it stirred up a lot of discussions... what do you see? A skeleton or a rope?

In person at first glance, like everyone else, I thought it was the skeleton that we're looking at until we read the title "Nude with Rope". OH? There's a rope? Why is the rope inside the body? So the questions went on. It took everyone quite a bit of time to see the rope. Of course, the rope shows up much better in the pic.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Mystery Revealed

Mistake-free Carolina Crossroads top (I hope).

Not so mistake-free top.

After the rough time of sewing those ring blocks, I was glad that they're behind me and moved onto putting the quilt top together. All the seams nestled in with each other, the sewing went smoothly and quickly, and I didn't even used a single pin in it either.
NOT!... those ring blocks came back to haunt me. Not only did I find one mistake, but I found two when I laid the top down for a picture. I afraid to look for more and I'm not going look either.

Now onto the border...

BTW, did you notice my new heading pic?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Step 7 - Ring Block

FINALLY!! The first part of Step 7 is done! This has been a very SLOOOOOW process for me. I had to take a lot of breaks in between seams because all those squares and matching all those seams drove me bonker! But like they said... take the elephant one bite at a time.

Yeah, I can move on to putting the top together now. 8-) Happy dance.....

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Road to Califorina-2008

I went through my photos last night and thought I would post just a few of my favorites today. There are a lot of photos that I would like to share with you, so I'm thinking of putting them in a slideshow. Don't know when it's going to be done... so StayTuned!

I love LoneStar quilt! Then to add applique to it... Spectacular! This one won first place in Outstanding Traditional Quilt.

Eventhough this Dear Jane quilt did not win any ribbon, I love the use of colors in this one...very soft, then the dark sashings and border add a punch to it. The photo didn't do its justice; this quilt has to be seen in person.

Close-up shot.

Cheryl and I happened to walk by one big booth when I spotted Ricky Tims. He was interviewing Cindy Needham for his podcast show. I didn't know who she is but was told by one of her student there that she an excellent quilter on a domestic machine. She was a featured artist there for the show this year.

I looked at some of her quilts on displayed, and they ARE wonderful.

Last but not least, this quilt speaks for itself. It's hilarious! Wonderful threadpainting!

Back of the quilt has carrots!

Friday, January 18, 2008

A Fun Day!

Cheryl and I headed back to Road to CA today.... not to work, but to see the quilts and shopping. We arrived before 10am, and already the parking lot was packed with cars. I had to park across the street from the convention center.

The first thing we did was to go see the winning quilts. We only had a sneak peak at them on Wednesday. WOW!! They are spectacular! I took lots and lots of pictures... will have to go through them and post some tomorrow.

We had a wonderful time looking at beautiful quilts and chatting with other quilters, non-quilters, and even their spouses. Were there more men attending the show this year? Cheryl pointed it out to me. It seemed so!

Of course, we also did a little of shopping in between here and there and managed to put a dent in my

Some red and yellow FQs to add to my stash, more black & white, white & black since I used up the ones for the mystery quilt, stencils, AND brown/pink sets of FQs for the NEXT mystery quilt. Yes, you heard me right! Bonnie has decided to do quarterly mystery quilt, and the next one starts on April 1st.

Back to the show, I think we covered only half of the exhibit before we realized it's lunch time, and we're starving. It took us another half hour to get out to get lunch because we got distracted quite a bit on the way out. lol

After lunch, we went into the other exhibit hall. We looked at the $100,00 Quilt Challenge... no photo allowed. :[ Something to do with the quilts already photographed for the magazine. Amazing quilts! There was one that I absolutely love. It's a scrappy quilt in neutral with tiny little blocks! Stunning! I'm gonna have to look for this magazine.

Before we know it, it's 2pm. Cheryl and I had to leave right at that moment to make it back in time to pick up the kids from school. Oh how I wished that we didn't have to leave; I need another full day to see all the quilts and more shopping. Oh wait, no more shopping... I already hit my limit. lol

As we were leaving, Cheryl said that she's so inspired to go home and do some sewing. Yes, Cheryl, that is exactly what you should feel after a quilt show like this. Go home and sew. Talk about sewing, I need to get going on the mystery quilt. Yes, the mystery was revealed the other night, and I only made one block so far.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Setup Stage

I wanted to post this earlier in the morning, but the computer was tied up. John was working from home today.... actually, he'd been working since 1am last night! I don't know how he could do it, my brain would be loopy if I only get a couple hours of sleep.

Anyway, Cheryl and I made it to Ontario Convention yesterday to help set up the Road to CA quilt show. We were assigned in group of four; one helper in our group came in from Tucson, AZ, and our group leader, Pat, who is pro at this, who helped set up with the show for many years came from San Diego area. We spent four hours (well, maybe 3 hrs... took a break and had lunch) climbing up and down the ladder to hang quilts. While we were working, we spied Ricky Tims walked by and gave us a quick hello.

I didn't bring the camera, but the cell phone was with me so used the cell camera instead. Pictures a little bit dark and unclear, but it'll do. Here are some quilts that we hung....

Here's Cheryl up on the ladder adjusting the quilts, and Pat stood back to make sure they are straight.

This flower vase is MORE than life size. The quilt is huge... 74"x80"? Spectacular!

Here we are in front of our favorite flower quilts that we hung.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

My Quilting Buddy and I head for the show

The head above the quilt top belongs to my friend, Cheryl. She is my quilting buddy and quilting student. (That is the center of her first nautical quilt.)

More than 10 years ago, Cheryl started out as a panio teacher to all three of my children.
On many occasions, I would bring my quilty projects with me to the lessons. My projects sparked Cheryl's interest in quilting, and after a few years of wanting to learn how to sew and quilt, she jumped on board.

We bartered with each other for piano and quilting lessons. It worked out great for both of us. She learned how to use her sewing machine, and the cost of music lessons for three kids was way down for me.

Now Cheryl is a very busy gal. Not only does she gives private lessons at home, she also teaches at Park and Rec. and have a family with two little ones to take care of. So she comes over whenever she could to work on her quilty things.

I got Cheryl started in quilting, but the thing that I got her hooked on the most is going to California's largest quilt show, Road to California . Tomorrow, we are heading out right after we drop the kiddos off at school to help set up the show.... mainly will be hanging beautiful quilts! Then Friday, we'll be back for shopping and see more quilts!

Last year, we went to the show mainly to see Alex Anderson. Here she is with Cheryl at the book signing. Alex is just the same as she is on Simply Quilts... very personal and loveable.

At her seminar, we got to pet her quilts (she WANTED us to!) and took lots of pictures.

These are my favorites of her quilts.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Step 6

A seam here..... A seam there.... A seam here..... A seam there.... And step 6 of
Bonnie's Mystery Quilt is completed. Look who wanted to get in the picture too.

I was thinking of laying out the blocks on the floor to see how they all look together and went to get the camera. When I came back, both dogs were on them. It's not even a quilt top yet, and already they claimed it!

After I clicked this shot and praised them for being still for me to take a picture, Suki (the red one) grabbed the Ohio blocks and ran off with them.
Naughty, naughty little doxie!
It's a good thing that she had some obedient trainings and dropped those blocks when I screamed "DROP" at her. So that ended the photo session and the idea of laying out those blocks on the floor.

Switching over

After a couple of weeks of going back and forth whether to just post at this site or the other one, the other one has made up my mind for me this morning. I discovered that I exceeded the bandwidth so that the photos are not showing. Arghgh!!
It's going to take me sometimes to learn how to do things here, but it looks like there are more features that I can add to my blog.
Please be patient while I'm transfering my posts over... you know I'm a technology challenged person!

Saturday, January 12, 2008


Back in 2001? or 2002? When I first discovered the quilt community on the net and being a fairly new quilter, I joined several swap groups to learn about quilting as much as possible. It was a great way to learn for me because each swap had its own guideline to follow (or else your own blocks will be return to you-Yikes!), a chance to learn different methods of piecing, and forced me out of my comfort zone to try harder blocks.

With so many of those little 3inches 9-patch blocks in the mystery quilt, they reminded me of the group called Niblets. What are Niblets? you asked. Niblets are those 3inches 9-patch blocks. I exchanged with the group for about a year.... but haven't done anything with these Niblets. There they sat in my box and forgotten with name tags still attached.

I think I need to do something with them... my mind is blank... any suggestions?

HMMM... are there any "Niblers" out there? If you were or are still one, please let me know. I love to hear from you, and what have you done with your Niblets?

Friday, January 11, 2008

Mystery Continues

I was awaken EARLY this morning by the opening of the garage door. It's still pitch black and the numbers on the alarm clock shone brightly at 2:44. 2:44am?!? Who is opening the garage door at this early in the morning? Then I realized that since he's not in bed, it must have been John who opened the door. When I heard the truck started, then I knew it was him. Where is going to at this TIME OF THE NIGHT? Going to work already? He usually doesn't leave the house until 4:45am. Then I remembered, he is on-call this week....must have been really important or he couldn't fixed the problem remotely on the home computer.

I don't like it when he is on-call. We usually never get a good night sleep all week what with the pager and blackberry going off constantly throughout the night. But what can we do, that's part of his job. We were lucky when he was on-call the last time though, nothing seriously happened to the system in the middle of the night.

So there I was in bed, tried to go back to sleep, but sleep did not come. My mind was spinning with the things I need to do for the day. I kept telling myself to go back to sleep, but the brain refused to. It's too early, go back to sleep, I kept telling myself. But by now, my mind was on Bonnie's mystery quilt. Well, what the heck?! Might as well get up and check to see if Bonnie had posted the next step to the mystery. By now it's after 3 am, logged onto my laptop, went to her blog, and there it is, Step 6 is up. ;o) I can started to put together the mystery. Then I thought, well, before I do and since I was here at the computer, I might as well catch up with some blogs reading. The next time I looked up at the clock, it's already 5am! My, how time flies when you're in blogland. *lol* I should have been working on the mystery quilt.

With my cup of coffee in hand, I had until 6:30 am to sew some of the blocks together before the kids got up and started the day. I finished 10 of 16 of the Ohio blocks; here are nine together....

WHOA, HOLD THE PHONE!! I didn't see that before! There's something wrong with that top left block. I pieced that hourglass unit in the block the wrong way. Guessed that's what happens while I sew under the influence of sleep deprivation. LOL Oh well, Mr. Handy Dandy Seam Ripper is always by my sewing machine. ;o)

Friday is usually family night, but I'm hoping that I could sneak away here and there for some sewing time to finish the rest of step 6.....but first, I must take a cat nap before attempting to sew again. lol

Thursday, January 10, 2008

His Special Day

I baked a cake for John's birthday this morning, and Amanda decorated with the candies and candles. John is a simple-kinda-of-guy, so we are keeping his birthday simple. We'll go out to his favorite restaurant then home for cake and ice cream. 8-)

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Carolina Crossroads - Step 5

Yep, I finished with these puppies last night. Step 5 of Carolina Crossroads Mystery Quilt is completed... all of 100 hourglass blocks. I started out making these blocks using two squares method, but then ran out of larger pieces about 2/3 of the way through with my black and white and had to resort to using the smaller pieces. I do not have the Companion Angle ruler as in Bonnie's instruction but do have an Omnigrid ruler to use. I'm glad I got a chance to make these units using the strip method because I've never done it that way.
Ready for Step 6... can't wait to put the blocks together.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Carolina Crossroads Mystery

I'm feeling much better today. My head cleared; no more headache and dizziness.... almost back to my normal self.

It has been a wet weekend here in Southern California. Normally, the kids and I like to take the dogs out for a walk and play in the rain, but we stayed in yesterday... no playing in the rain this time around. :( John went to see the Supercross (indoor dirtbike race). Hannah has been working on her science project which is due tomorrow (three of the steps anyway), and I got lots of sewing time in. ;-))

A couple of weeks before Christmas, while I was catching up with blogs reading, I discovered that Bonnie at Quiltville is doing a mystery quilt, Carolina Crossroads. How did I missed that before? She was already on Step 3 then. I've never done a mystery quilt before, so I couldn't resist joining in on the fun... and the best part is that it's a scrappy quilt. I think Bonnie is the Queen of Scrappiness... check out her website for yourself.

This mystery quilt is what I've been working on all week. You see, Bonnie is at Step 5 this week, and the next step will be putting the blocks together come next Thursday or Friday. I am almost caught up. 8-)) Step 1 to step 4 completed... step 5 is half way done.

As you can see, my colors are blue and orange per the artist-in-the-family's (aka Amanda) suggestion. I started collecting some black and white FQs recently, my latest love, and thought that it would be fun to use them for the background. It will be a happy quilt. Now that I'm on Step 5 and it dawns on me, I hope that I didn't messed things up by using dark for the background. Bonnie's instructions stated to use light for the background... I'll keep my fingers crossed that it will turn out OK.

From left to right: Step 1- Railfence(100), Step 2 - 9-patch with accent color(100), Step 3 - MORE 9-patches(80), Step 4 - triangle 9-patches(40).

These little blocks are tiny... so tiny that they fit in the palm of my hand... and I have little hands. They will finished at 3" in the quilt.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Our First Cruise

AURGHGHGHG... it bounds to happen sooner or later, John gave me his head cold that he has been nursing all week. So I've been taking extra vitamin C, eating alot of citrus, and lots and lots of soup to combat this cold. Hopefully, the kids won't get it before they head back to school.

Finally, I have uploaded pictures and learned how to use the new scanner. Why does it take me so long to learn how to use anything that has a cord and computer chip in it?! Oh yeah, I'm technology challenge! lol I tried to scan some photos last night and couldn't get the @%#$! scanner to cooperate with me for like 30 minutes. So John came to the rescue and in a minute, he figured it out what to do (it's his first time using it). Apparently, it wasn't the machine, it was the USER!! *LOL*
Sorry about the rambling.... here are some photos of our cruise...

This is the ship that we were on, the "Monarch of the Seas"..... No, we did not take this picture.

You're probably wondering why we decided to go on a cruise between Christmas and New Year and WITHOUT the kids. Well, it happened that our good friend, Valerie, turned 40 and her birthday is on Christmas Day. She never had a real birthday party, so Armand, her DH, gave her a birthday party that she'll never forget. And it was a blast! What a way to celebrate your 40th and first real birthday party!

It was a three night cruise down to Mexico. We arrived in Ensenada on Saturday morning, and the whole birthday party moved onto land to do some shopping and continued with the celebration. We rented some golf carts for the 12 people..
Do we look like we are the tourists?! *LOL*

Birthday Girl is on the right..

Here we are before we hit Ensenada. That is all I can show for Mexico because you know what they said... What happens in Mexico, stays in Mexico! *LOL*

On Sunday, we were back to the seas with the ship just floating there. That's when the seasickness sorted of hit me or is that from Mexico? *LOL*

Cute towel monkey that our room attendant made for us.

Group photo.... on our last night.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008


We're back from our cruise excursion. This was our first cruise ever and John and I had a BLAST! I didn't take a whole lot of pictures but do have a few to post... once I find the cord to the camera.

We arrived home before noon yesterday and supposed to head back out later in the evening to go to a New Year's Eve party, but John somehow came down with the flu or something like that. He felt miserably and slept all afternoon and right into the evening, so we ended up having a quiet New Year's Eve at home... watched TV and watched the dropping of the ball in New York on its 100th anniversary.

I can't believe it is 2008! Where did the time go? What is your New Year's Resolution? I usually don't make resolutions because I'd never followed through. However, since Christmas flew by and I was so unorganized, my resolution is to make Christmas year round for 2008. That just means I will work on projects and gifts that I had in mind for quite awhile now for Christmas throughout the year instead of waiting until November to work of them.

Have a happy, healthy, and prosperous new year to all!