Okay, first off, I was happy to hear that I was not the only person that took time to start the year with a clean house. Several of my fellow bloggers also quietly admitted to secret cleaning over the holidays. What I don't understand is why I have to keep cleaning the same spot over and over again. I mean, what's up with the end of the couch in my sewing room? I cleaned it off before cmas and have had to move piles of junk from there at least three times and this morning, when I sat down to pull some stitches, I still couldn't put my feet up. That's not right.
I never got into the pantry to organize there, but I need to do that soon. We were having trouble getting groceries in yesterday because of the partially used boxes of stuffing and cereal and crackers and chips.
New Year's eve was nice. We were all together and took down all the holiday decorations and Rob dusted almost the whole house and we went out for supper at our favorite Mexican restaurant. We even managed to stay up until the year rang in on the east coast. We're normally happy if we can stay awake until it's new year's in Greenland.
Then, on NY day, I sewed almost all day. I did get up from the machine to make a big pot of ColoradoLady's Potato Soup, which she posted the recipe for so long ago that I can't even link to it anymore. We LOVE that soup and it used up the very last of the cmas ham. Speaking of that ham, it was so salty that my tongue swelled up for a couple of days, making it hard to talk. I really have to be careful with my salt...but because of my tongue, not my blood pressure. What's up with that??? Course, I think Sydney adds salt just to keep me quiet.
I worked on the RRCB mystery quilt a lot. I struggled and I fought and I re-read the instructions...back to step 5, trying to figure out what I was doing wrong. I couldn't imagine that Bonnie would design a quilt where the points would not match. And, I mean WOULD NOT!
After a few hours, I went out to the sun room to pull some stitches and I realized that the churn dash was going together fine and measured the right size. But, when I added the red/neutral hst strips, I ran into trouble. Turns out that my strips were all between 1/8 and 1/4 inch too long. Don't know how that happened because my squares were 2 inches, but when I put 5 together, the strip was long and slightly off shape, like a parallelogram. I think it's because I didn't trim every one of those 600 half triangle squares before I sewed them into strips and then I pressed the devil out of them to get all those seam allowances to lay flat. Anyway, a bit of trimming and blocks started to go together much quicker. Of course, by then, I was about out of undisturbed quilting time. Rats!
But, I got this much done by last night. I'm only making 9 of the churn dash blocks so I can make a lap sized quilt. Six didn't seem like it was going to be wide enough and 9 should be great for one person to cuddle under and possible for two, including what I think Ms Bonnie is going to proscribe for a border.
With the remaining pieces, I'm going to make a Jacob's Ladder quilt for Project Linus. And, speaking of Linus, my goal was to cut 11 quilts this month, and when added to the one I have pieced already, that was going to give me 12 for the year to donate. I spent 5 hours in one of my scrap bins (I have two) and didn't make a dent and only ended up with one quilt cut. Scraps have a way of becoming obsessive as I try to move them from the scrap saver's system to the scrap user's system. Now that I know that I can leave them as strips and don't have to cut each strip into squares, starting to use them feels much more do-able. And, I worked through about 5 miles of strips, pressing and sizing and figuring out what would work and what would not. I generated a full trash can of snips and bits that I won't use and I found a couple of pieces of poly that are big enough for backs. So, it was a successful dig, but working my scrap bins is a bit like speelunking; you just crawl in and expect to feel your way around for a few hours. Then, I come out and get to work motivated to use stuff up.
The original plan was to use just one pattern and make a bunch of quilts using different fabrics. But, looking at what I have to use, and knowing my tendency to get bored, I'm going to have to be more flexible in choosing patterns. I can be flexible. I found a pattern in a magazine a couple of days ago and thought, I have the perfect fabric in my Linus bin to make that. Now, I know what to use that large piece of yellow flowered fabric for.
Okay, that's it for me. Except to say, Happy New Year's everyone and I hope you are all starting it the way you want. My two resolutions last year were to finish some WIP's and to lose 15 pounds. I lost 10 and ended up netting 5 fewer WIPs than I started the year with...darn all those new projects I started and finished. This year, I'm going to focus on applique, still try to finish some WIPs and lose those other 5 pounds. I can do it, I can do it, if I put my mind to it...and give up my bedtime snacks.