A double holiday!

Valentine's and my Birthday made for a busy weekend.  On Saturday, we went antiquing to celebrate my birthday.  We've learned that it's better to go on Saturday than Sunday, if for no better reason than we can get an earlier start because the stores open earlier.  We had a real nice day, with antiquing at our favorite shops and lunch at a great small town diner, always a great place to find something that's not good for you.  We chose to have our big meal for Saturday lunch rather than battle for a table at a restaurant on Valentine's night. 
Before we left, I finished the quilting on the Row Houses quilt, so more to come on that.  Just need to trim it and bind it, but I had to stop at JoAnn's for binding fabric.  (Okay, any excuse to shop for fabric will work, right?)
That quilt being finished (yay!), I got to start a new project. 

And, you know which one that is.  I made this block from the templates in Marsh McCloskey's book.  And, I made some mistakes and what should have come out as 8.5" only came out as 7".  Jimminy, that's way off.  Clearly, I didn't understand the block.  I assumed it was a pattern error...right?  It would have to be a pattern error.  Couldn't be me.  And, why were there sections cut to finish at 7/8" and 1 3/8" and other sections cut to finish 1" and 1.5"?  Marsha doesn't give size at the end of each step like Sally Collins does, and I was really having trouble at each step, trying to figure out what size it should have come out.  So, I decided to draft the block again, correcting the pattern error.  And, in doing that, I figured out where my errors were in piecing the block.  Oops!  If you're ever going to make this complex block...or I guess any complex block, I suggest drafting it out on paper first.  It really helps to understand why things are the size they are. 
Anyway, since I was going to draft the block again anyway, it wasn't really all that miniature, so I decided to scale it down.  Sort of half size...but not quite.  I re-drew the flying geese from 
7/8" x 1 3/8" finished to 1/2" x 1" finished.  That changed the scale of everything else, so it's not quite half size, but slightly larger than half size...maybe like 60% of the original. 
I got the center pieced yesterday, and this morning I started the first black section that will put the center on point.  Doing this in the smaller size opens it back up to the original vision that I showed on Friday.  And, I wanted it to be a challenge and making it half the size doubled the challenge.  Even using the best of my skills, it's far from perfect.  The center doesn't quite line up the way I'd like, but I'm not sure I'm willing to take it apart and put it back together again.  That will depend on how well the next sections go.  If those are coming out really really good, I might be willing to work a little harder to get the center just right.  Or not.

On a non-quilt note, a couple of weeks ago, our hot water tank went out.  A couple of cold showers later, and Rob took the day off to have it replaced.  His thank you gift for taking care of it all on a day when I was too busy to take the day off was this little trailer.  On Valentine's Day, we added to it, turning the trailer into a summertime diorama; adding the chairs and fire and other accessories.  He found the little beagle in an antique store.  He is trailer obsessed and would love for this to be a picture of our next vacation.  He found a show called Flippin' RVs and loves to watch them restore the vintage RV's that we both love.  

This piece of yard art was my birthday gift from him.  We love having little statues in the garden to give it some structure when other things are filling in.  And, they give me places to tie up vines and things like that.  With stones in the base, it should be great for that.  But, it's almost too pretty to put it outside.  Those bright yellow sunflowers will give some much needed color to my green flowerbeds, tho. 

I picked up a few sewing related things for myself on Saturday.  A couple of vintage patterns and the little coin purse looking thing is a sewing kit.  I love these little sewing kits and have a black one, too.  I can't help collecting them and they take up a little bit of space on my book case.  I don't know that I'll ever make myself a hat, but for a dollar, I couldn't pass up the pattern to at least learn how to.  And, the shirt pattern?  Well, another dollar.  The envelope art was worth that.  

Okay, that's it for me today.  Everybody have a great Monday. Stay warm.  Wish we could have some of the precipitation, but not the snow and ice.  On paper I am older.  So, why don't I feel wiser?

Take care.  Lane


Elizabeth said...

Still voting for the one on the right ;). Your colors are beautiful!

xo -E

lw said...

I think the colors in your new project are very handsome.

I love the summer diorama, I can just picture you guys getting cold drinks from the cooler and sitting down with the dogs to relax in the evening.

Kath said...

Wishing you a belated Happy Birthday Lane- fond wishes from Kath

Lakegaldonna said...

Sounds like you had a wonderful birthday. May they all be wonderful.
Love the smaller version of what you are making, and the colors too. Too bad Marsha didn't give the finished unit size. Looks like you are managing quite well.

Woo hoo, you finished the log house quilt! Great news.

Anonymous said...

Love the yard art as well as the new quilt. You are a year older and you say no wiser. I feel 10 years older and dumb as dirt. Our cold weather got down into the 20's and its not for me. Come Spring!