5/21/11

Episode 10: Mommy Saw Jesus Christ!

OK this is not a religious episode, but I did have to share a funny mommyhood moment with you that does have to do with me (supposedly) seeing the big J.C....after using his name in an inappropriate way of course. I also give a quick update on why this podcast was supposed to be short, but you know how I ramble so it's only 15 minutes shorter than others. WIPs, book giveaway winner, and review of not-to-be-missed series The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Thanks for listening! Reach me at http://craftygardenmom.blogspot.com or taneshaquilts@yahoo.com Happy Memorial Day!

Book Giveaway Winner is Robin!!

Congratulations entry #20: Robin! You're the winner of a copy of The Practical Guide to Patchwork by Elizabeth Hartman. Please send me the address to ship your book.

Thanks to all who entered. Keep checking back because there are more book (quilt and non-quilt!) giveaways to come all summer long!

CGM

5/20/11

Mags and Cags...

I know many people don't like it, but I LOVE when my mailbox reveals new catalogs - especially the quilting and knitting ones! I got my Knit Picks and connecting Threads catalogs in the mail a few days ago. I've only had a chance to thumb through them briefly, but

I also noticed these magazines at the grocery checkout stand. Quilts and More summer issue...be still my heart. This has become one of my favorites for great projects I want to do "next." Too bad my next list is about 30 projects long, and counting!

.....now if only someone would do something about the pesky child in my house who keeps calling for "Mommy" every time I sit down with my tea to read them. :0

Last chance to enter for the book giveaway by midnight!!! Go HERE and post a comment to enter.

CGM

5/18/11

WIP Wednesday....kind of

OK I have a lot of nerve posting a WIP Wednesday considering I have no long-term plans to make this an official weekly post, LOL. But seeing as I DO have an actual WIP and it happens to be Wednesday, I figured what the heck, give it a go.

Here's what I'm working on this week:


Which will eventually be this:


(not my baby, but I plan to take a picture with mine when I finish this quilt...hopefully she's not in college)

That's it. The sum total of what I have had time to work on. I'm trying not to think it's too pitiful, but that's all there is going on. I'm traveling most of the rest of May, and putting my sewing machine in for it's annual cleaning on Friday. So I'm trying to get as much of this quilt top done before then. Let's hope it works out!

What are you working on this week?

CGM

5/13/11

Why I Love "Every Other Friday"

Have I ever mentioned how much I love my cleaning lady? So much so that when she was ill a few months ago and had to skip one of her bi-monthly cleanings of my home, I was sorely tempted to run to the drugstore and buy a giant bottle of Robitussin and make a batch of chicken soup for her, but I don't know where she lives. And a few years ago, when my husband and I were going over the monthly budget, he casually (and innocently) asked, "Do we really need to keep the cleaning lady? We can clean the house ourselves and save some money!" I looked him straight in the eyes and said, "I will cut down on food, clothing, and Starbucks before I give her up. I'll even start selling stuff on eBay again to cover the expense if it comes down to that. Don't mess with me on this honey." I think he also caught my unsaid statement of "We?!?! When the h-e-double-hockeysticks do YOU clean around here?!?!" I love my husband, really I do, but the man hasn't picked up a toilet bowl brush in the 10 years I've known him...and from the state of his apartment when I met him, it's been a lot longer than that. "We!" indeed. Needless to say, he hasn't brought up firing the cleaning lady as a way of cutting expenses again, LOL.

As a busy mom who works outside the home, I take great pleasure in this "extra" my income allows us to have. It truly does give me more time to spend with my family, especially on precious weekends, rather than have to spend half a Saturday cleaning. Knowing my house is clean also unburdens my conscience when I spend a few hours in my quilting studio vs. with my hands in rubber gloves or mopping the floors. Not to say that I don't do "maintenance cleaning" in between her visits, but there is not much more that warms this tired mom's heart than to walk into my house every other Friday and be greeted with the fresh smell of...well, a clean house! Call me "elitist", a "pampered princess" or even "spoiled"...yep, I'll own the last one. But all I know is, every other Friday if my husband were ever to ask me if it was him or her to go...he'd only "just" make the cut by an embarrasingly low margin. :-)

Don't forget to enter the book giveaway here by May 20th!
Have a great weekend!
CGM

5/7/11

CGM Podcast Episode #9: Step Away From the Quilt! + Book Giveaway

Show notes:

Works in Progress

Snuggly Squares baby quilt by Melissa Corry

Camera strap slipcover so I can have a fancy-schmancy camera when I go on my Photo Tour DC next month

Photo Quilt using family photos for a nice piece of photo-wall-art in our family room. I will probably post a tutorial on this later, but here are some pictures of the photo quilt I made for my parents 35th Anniversary in 2006.



Book Reviews:


Book Giveaway: Win 1 copy of The Practical Guide to Patchwork: New Basics for the Modern Quiltmaker by Elizabeth Hartmen when you leave a comment here. You can also enter a SECOND time by becoming a follower of my blog, and again posting that you've done so. All comments must be received by midnight Friday, May 20th to be eligible. Good luck!



+ 2 books of non-fiction:
  
  

CGM

5/6/11

Episode 9: Step Away From the Quilt

In this episode I fill you in on my return-to-work, quilts I'm working on including the Home in the Woods quilt that's giving me fits, and a fun purchase I made to help me learn how to use my digital camera better. Of course some book reviews: 2 books of non-fiction, and a quilting book review with a giveaway! Be sure to enter by May 20, 2011 at my blog: http://craftygardenmom.blogspot.com and leave a comment in the show notes to enter. Also, you can reach me at taneshaquilts@yahoo.com with questions and if you feel so inclined, leave a review on iTunes. Thanks for listening!

5/5/11

Past Quilt #4: Poppies


Here's another landscape quilt...I think it was my first landscape quilt actually! Poppies are one of my favorite flowers, next to sunflowers, and I couldn't resist using a decorator fabric that had poppies printed all over it. It was a remnant I found at a yard sale, and I scooped it up for 50 cents, even though I didn't know yet what I'd do with it.

I started by picking that beautiful hand dyed fabric for the background. It had the right mix of blue for the sky with splotches of green to simulate trees in the distance, but also add some depth to the scene. Then I fussy cut a grass print, making sure I cut no straight lines - it should be jagged edges to make it more realistic.


Next came fussy cutting the poppies and small daisies...the hardest part was those stems and getting them to curve naturally while keeping them as thin as possible.

I felt the scene was too "blah" with just grass and some flowers, so I added a large tree for more interest. I found a "perfect" batik fabric in varying shades of brown to use for the trunk - if you look very closely you can see small flowers in the print. But when I cut the long strip in just the right place in the fabric piece, it read naturally as a tree. It left a big hole in the center of my 1/2 yard cut of batik fabric, but sometimes you have to make sacrifices for the sake of art, LOL.



















Next came the leaves on the tree. To say these were a pain to cut is an understatement...I think it's the equivalent of Quilting Chinese Water Torture to cut each individual leaf the way I started to in the beginning of making the tree...but time, sore fingers, and experience makes you wiser, and you quickly learn to use larger pieces of leaf fabric cut very jagged to get the same or similar result.


The key is to make sure you aren't cutting cloud or lollipop shapes when you cut leaves...look at the trees outside your window. They have sharp, jagged edges. so should your landscape leaves.

This quilt hangs in my kitchen and while I definitely see areas I would improve on today now that I've made a lot more landscape quilts since this first one, I keep it as a reminder of how proud I was when this one was finished. And really, that's what all of our quilts should evoke within us...pride of work and a sense of accomplishment that "I MADE that!"

CGM

5/2/11

What I'm Reading This Month



The Informationist: A Thriller by Taylor Stevens: this one is being compared to the Steig Larsson (Girl With a Dragon Tattoo) series, but even more action-packed. 
I like an action/suspense book with a strong female lead character, so I want to give this one a try, especially as it's Taylor Stevens first novel.



Save Me by Lisa Scottoline:
Lisa's a fantastic author, and I was hooked when I read her Rosato & Associates series. Now that she's branched out into stand-alone novels, I haven't been as enthralled, but she is still a solid writer, and delves into interesting plot lines that could happen in real life, a la Jodi Picoult. Looking forward to this one as it deals with a choice a mother has to make to save a child's life and the repercussions that come with it.


The Language of Flowers: A Novel by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
this is an advance copy, book is on sale 8/23/11


Then Came You: A Novel by Jennifer Weiner:
this is an advance copy, book is on sale 7/12/11
She's one of my favorite authors,
so of course I was SO excited to get my hands on a copy of this book so early!


What are you reading in May?

CGM

5/1/11

Book Giveaway Winner!

The winner of the Episode #7 Book Giveaway + 3 fat quarters is #12: smithcindyk
Congratulations! Email me at taneshaquilts@yahoo.com so I can arrange shipment of your package. Thanks to everyone who entered!

CGM
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