Saturday, April 27, 2013

#46, 47, 48

#46 Hill and Valley
When I was little, my brother's absolute favorite color was red. I had different favorites, depending on the day, but I always steered clear of red. It was Erik's color. But you know what? I really like red fabric. I like red and white, and I would love to make a red and white quilt sometime. But for now I'll just settle on a red and white block.
#47 Homemaker
I love this block. It was kind of tough, having to sew some seams that pivot in the middle. You can see in the top left corner of the center square that it didn't turn out perfectly. But I think with some ironing and perhaps some seam-ripping, it may be easy to fix.
I love the word "homemaker." It's an old-fashioned word, and many people say it's outdated. But I'm realizing in my crazy Foreign Service life, that one of my first missions as we move from place to place is to be a homemaker. We move from house to house and from city to city, from country to country. Our housing and furnishings are provided for us, which is really convenient. It helps us save money, and we don't have to deal with the hassle of finding short-term apartments, losing down-payments, or getting ripped off in foreign countries. But while we're given a house, it's up to us to make it a home. Specifically, it's up to me to make it a home-- for my husband, for my girls, and for myself. It's my job to feed the four of us, raise the girls in righteousness, and make our home a refuge from the world. It needs to feel homey, even when it's new and unfamiliar. 
We just moved into a new apartment last week. I've been trying harder this time to get settled in faster. We've bought a shoe rack, some drawers for the bathroom counter, and other organizational tools. I'm finding that having a place for everything (instead of a heap, a bag, or a suitcase) helps make the house feel like home for me. I'm not much of a decorator, but having familiar things to do makes our house feel like home. My husband bought a bike, which he rides to and from work. The girls have a bunch of their toys, and we already hit up the library for some books to read. We borrowed some movies, and we have many of our favorites with us. I'm setting up my sewing table, and once I'm finished with that, I'll have no real excuse anymore for my clothes not being fully unpacked.
#48 Homeward Bound
I don't know how long it took me to make this block, but I do know that I spent every minute of it singing the song by Simon and Garfunkel.

Monday, April 22, 2013

#43, 44, 45

#43 Garden Path
I like this one a lot. I like the bold colors, and I like that it kind of looks like a game board. I could probably make a new version of "Sorry!" or "Aggravation" and play it on this. But it's all fresh and flowery, so it reminds me of gardens as well.
#44 Gentleman's fancy
This is supposed to use the same green and the same purple, but I kind of ran out. So I used two different kinds, but I bet you didn't notice until I pointed it out. I really like using bold colors more than these pastels, but the pansy/violet fabric was just so cute, I had to use it, and this green was delicate and worked nicely with it.
As a side note, the green striped piece was a scrap from one of my Grammy's shirts. She likes to tailor her shirts to be 3/4 sleeves and a bit shorter on the waist, and this is what happens when I end up with the scraps!
#45 Grape basket
I hadn't used any purple in my quilt until this week, and when it's named "grape basket," you kind of have to make it purple. Otherwise it's just "basket," and that's no fun. I kind of like all these basket squares. And since the final quilt is on point (set out as diamonds instead of squares), they'll be really cute in the final project.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

#40, 41, 42

So, what's with the radio silence? We have an excuse, both of us. It's because we've been hanging out together. That's right. Lame.
But really for me, this blog is a way to feel close to my family and hang out with my sister while we're far apart. So if I'm crashing at her house, I'm feeling pretty close. Underfoot sometimes, in fact. 
Anyway. Enough excuses for me. Sarah's excuse now (and for the next little while) is that she is on a cruise. She didn't bring me, her sewing machine, or her fabric (that slacker!!), so she'll be even more behind than she already is. But she'll be tan, and that will be nice.
So, for this week's blocks:
#40 Friendship block
This is such a nice, simple block. I like it, and I like the fabrics I stole from my mom to use for it.
#41 Friendship star
I'll probably redo this one at the end. I loved these fabrics together in the End of Day block a few weeks ago, but they really don't work in this one! It really emphasizes that I cut up a large print that doesn't match up at all once it's sewn together.
 I don't really like the Friendship Star pattern, anyway. It always looks a little lop-sided, like I need to squint and raise an eyebrow to even look at it.
Maybe I'll redo it in black and silver and call it "Ninja throwing star!" Then I might like it.
#42 Fruit Basket
In case you didn't notice, this is not a complete square. I know, thanks for clarifying, right!
I've been in the process of moving from China to America for the last month or so. I cut these pieces before I left China, but since I hadn't yet made all the templates necessary, I stopped in the middle of cutting it out. Then I packed my stuff, moved to the other side of the world, and I haven't gotten it back yet. Oops. I did pack the rest of this fabric in the "Go to DC" stuff, not the "Ship to Brazil and open next year" stuff. So that's good.