Monday, February 25, 2013

The Postman Has Been Busy

 While we were away for the week the postman was very busy delivering parcels of QAYG blocks so many quilters have been very busy using up their fabric strips. Delys Rogers (WA) sent some lovely QAYG blocks using kid fabrics as well as enough binding strips to join a set of blocks together which is a huge time saver for me.
  Cherrie Rees (NSW) sent some beautiful QAYG blocks in lovely bright colours and Cat Magraith (SA) sent a beautiful set of QAYG blocks in pastel colours. I also received a huge box from Michelle Bardwell (Vic), which contained a lovely crocheted baby blanket, some embroidered and appliqued blocks as well as lots of QAYG blocks which Michelle's quilting group made. The group has been very busy and the blocks are lovely and will make more beautiful quilts.
  Luckily I've been busy making more quilts and I completed 2 quilts yesterday using QAYG blocks so I plan to get more dine very soon. The photos of the finished quilts will be on my other blog and check back soon as I have more to show soon.
 Thank you all so much for your generous donations for quilts for the needy.
Hugs, Jan Mac






Saturday, February 23, 2013

Back Into Production

 We came home late last night to avoid the continual rain and threatened floods and when we heard about the flood waters which  would have been on our way home, we were very grateful that we had decided to leave. Unfortunately it's now 41.5 degrees (107F)  back here at home so the change in temperature has been quite dramatic. The good news is that it's great weather for drying the washing outside.
   We enjoyed our short break away despite the rain and took the opportunity to see some of the sights around Armidale. The sunset on our drive home last night was lovely and it was of course lovely to be home again.
Thank you all so much for your kind words and well wishes on my milestone birthday. Now we are back I have more night shifts to work and I want to get some more quilts finished to donate. I was going to have a break from crocheting squares for blankets for the needy, while we were away, but I caved and bought more yarn and a crochet hook as I found I kept dozing off in the car without something to do. I can crochet without looking at what I am doing for most of the time so I don't get car-sick which is a bonus way to make use of the time spent in the car. I only need 4 more squares to complete a blanket so now that all the washing is hanging on the line I plan to spend some time in the air conditioned comfort and finish off another blanket.
  I hope you all have a restful weekend doing what you love too.
Hugs, Jan Mac



Tuesday, February 19, 2013

It's Finally Here

After a long time in research and planning to get the right vehicle we have finally had our new camper fitted. They are only made by one company based near Coffs Harbour and it's great to finally have it all come together. We have done a lot of extreme four wheel driving and camping but this means we will have more comfort and it will be great for touring trips. It's a light-weight camper attached to our vehicle and with the king sized bed it means that it will be a lot easier and quicker for us to set up and break camp. The bed stays made-up which is an absolute bonus, as dealing with all the bedding setups every night was harder than putting up the tent.
  Anyway the sun has finally come out and we hope that it continues for a day or two so we can have a look at the surrounding countryside before coming home again. I'll be back into making the donation quilts as soon as we get back.
Thanks for stopping by.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Monday, February 18, 2013

Road Trip

We are currently in NSW at Woolgoolga after a two day road trip. Unfortunately there was heavy rain all afternoon but it has now cleared although showers are predicted for the rest of the week. I'm hoping to have a few sunny days so we can enjoy the beach. The reason for our trip? Finally after 2 or 3 years of planning we have a new vehicle and we are picking up our new camper so we can enjoy more extreme trips while 4 wheel driving. The camper will be attached to the tray of our vehicle so we won't have to tow a trailer but will still have a very comfortable queen sized bed instead of using the tent.
   We had to wait nearly 6 months for our car and our camper has been ready for us since Oct last year so we are really looking forward to being able to start traveling to places we've been wanting to visit for some time. Tasmania will be our first trip in mid March so we hope the weather will be kind to us as it can become quite cold down there.
Thanks for stopping by.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Saturday, February 16, 2013

My 60th Birthday Party



 It was my 60th birthday on the 7th of Feb and after pressure from the family I agreed to have a low-key lunch yesterday with family to celebrate. My lovely sister  and Stephanie, our youngest DD made all the arrangements and it was lovely to see everyone again. We have two new babies in the family since Christmas and I was so touched that they all made the effort to come to the party as I know everyone leads busy lives and new babies make for busy family schedules.
    We had a lot of fun and the new Mum's loved the quilts for their babies so it was very worthwhile getting them done in time to give them in person. My much loved Mum, ( who passed away 6 years ago) would have loved it as their were lots of laughs and plenty of talking. We are all getting together again in 3 weeks time to celebrate another engagement and then a wedding in April so there's lots more good times to come.
 Hugs, Jan Mac




Friday, February 15, 2013

Frenzied Quilting

 It's been a busy week with working as well as family commitments but I was determined to finish the two baby quilts in time to give the new parents their gift. We have a family celebration today and it will be a good time to catch up as well as meet the new babies. It's been a bit of frenzied sewing to get them done and I was grateful that the baby's names are short so it was quicker to machine applique them.
  I hope they like them as I like to make them specific for each baby and wait until I know what gender quilt is needed. I may have to make some in advance though as they seem to be coming fairly quickly now that my nieces and nephews are reaching that stage of their lives.
 Thanks for stopping by.
Hugs, Jan Mac

A Big Week of Parcels

 I've been busy working nights so no time for blogging but very generous quilters have sent some parcels with various bits and pieces for the quilt drive for the needy. Sharyn Caspar (Vic) has been very busy and sent 3 beautiful tops as well as backing fabric. The tops are all beautifully made and will make lovely donation quilts.
I also received 30 beautiful QAYG blocks from Kay Pauling all the way from the US. Thank you so much for your generous gift of the blocks which will make a lovely quilt. I also received a very large parcel of fabric donated by Mardi Alderson of Vic.
 I'm having a busy time with work and family commitments so I'll get the donations made into quilts as soon as possible.
 Many thanks, Jan Mac



Saturday, February 9, 2013

Sunday Progress

 Today was a day of baby sitting and some time for hand stitching so I thought I'd show my progress with the Sunflower blocks. I've made 15 so far and plan to make 20 or 25 instead of the 13 as the pattern stated. As I usually do, I have changed the pattern as I am enjoying the piecing so much. I have only hand appliqued the flower centres to 5 of the blocks so today I'm also preparing the centres for the rest of the blocks. Then I want to pin them to the design wall and see how many more I need in each colour-way. They do look very different with the larger piece of fabric in the centre and I want a balanced appearance colour-wise. The Sunflower quilt is evolving and I have started piecing a border to complement the blocks but haven't got a firm measurement of that yet.
 I've also made a good start on the baby boy quilt and plan to get that one done this week in between working nights. Check back soon as I plan to have more to show very soon. I think I also need to re-commence cross stitch Tuesday as I have cross stitch projects I want to get finished too.
Thanks for stopping by.
Hugs, Jan Mac


Applique Group

 I was lucky enough to be able to attend my applique group's meeting again today and the standard of work is incredible as always. The group is so popular that you have to book in 2 weeks before the meeting date and all the places are usually taken within 2 hours of them being opened for bookings. There are many award winning quilters who are also members so  we see many fabulous quilts and tops.
 The first one is a Di Hall design, known as Phoebe, but I was unable to hear who the quilter was who made the quilt. The next 2 quilts were made by Bev Bannard and they were stunning. The first one is a replica of an antique quilt she saw in a book and the original quilt also had one green block. The second one is a replica of the Mary Manakee quilt from the DAR Museum of Washington DC.

 The lovely house quilt was made by Dorothy but sadly I didn't catch her last name.
 The Jane Austen quilt was made by Rosalee Clark and she designed the quilt based on an original quilt made by Jane Austen and possibly her mother and sister. Rosalee designed a pattern for the quilt and it is now sold at the Jane Austen Centre in Bath UK as well as here in Australia. Rosalee gave a very interesting talk about how she obtained permission to replicate the quilt and the difficulty she had in finding photos of the entire quilt.
 It was a lovely day spent with like-minded quilters and it was lovely to catch up with old friends again. I also made some good progress on my hand-piecing so I will have more to show very soon.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Friday, February 8, 2013

Time for Family

While I was on holidays two of my nieces had babies. one of each, so baby quilts for family are undergoing construction at the moment. I still have to machine blanket stitch the baby's name and add the last borders before I quilt this top and the boy quilt is still in the planning stages.
  I'll be seeing both babies in a week's time so I really want to get the quilts finished so I can give them their quilt while they are visiting. I like to make the new members of the family their own quilt with their name stitched on it and as many of the younger members of the family are now marrying and having babies I can see quite a few more will be needed in the near future. Two more nieces have just celebrated engagements and there is another wedding planned in April so I want to get these quilts finished before I get busy with more family celebrations.
  I've also been doing some hand stitching on one of my projects while I enjoyed a break from the sewing machine and I'll show my progress very soon.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Postman Has Been Busy

 I received more lovely parcels of donations today and they will all help to make life a little easier for the needy as they enable me to make and donate more quilts and blankets.
 Delys Rogers from Western Australia sent a lovely parcel of QAYG blocks which will join the blocks I've made to make another quilt. Cait Gordon also from WA also sent another parcel of orphan blocks and fabric strips which will help me yo make more QAYG blocks.
Kaite Matilda from NSW also sent a lovely parcel of knitting wool and yarn for me to make more crocheted blankets.
Thank you all for your generous donations. Today not much sewing happened as I had to take my Dad to the Doctors as well as help him buy groceries, run errands etc. Hopefully tomorrow will be more productive.
Hugs, Jan Mac


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

This and That

 I've been dabbling a bit in between catching up on sleep so I have bits and pieces done but not a lot of finishes in the last few days. I did bind the quilt  I'd been working on a few days ago, as well as making more QAYG blocks which went together quickly as Andrea Milne- Hall (NSW) sent a lovely huge box of batting squares already trimmed and ready to use. I have also been crocheting more squares for blankets so things are progressing and I should have more finishes to show very soon.
I'm also looking at finishing off and donating some UFOs which have stalled for some time and it will be good to clear the shelves and tubs of pre-cut fabric and make room for new ideas.
  I hope you are all getting some time to work on projects for yourself or to donate. Even one or two QAYG blocks soon add up into more quilts when combined with donated squares from other quilters.
 Many thanks, Jan Mac



Friday, February 1, 2013

A Treasure Trove

 I received a huge parcel yesterday and it was stuffed full of QAYG blocks, fabric, quilt tops and numerous sets of blocks. Unfortunately it was sent anonymously so I can't thank the sender but the bits and pieces will be used up very soon so I can donate more quilts where they are needed. I also met up with a quilter who was traveling through from Melbourne and she dropped off numerous bags of fabric and some batting pieces. I've already stared to use these donations and have made enough blocks for another QAYG quilt. I also received a very generous donation of money to help pay for quilt costs, which will be very useful in the next few weeks.
 Today I finished off the QAYG quilt and also quilted a top I made recently to clear out the tub of 2.5" squares. The blue top also used up lots of those squares and I think I'll add borders to make it a bit larger. I'm off to bed now as I have more night shifts to work.
Many thanks for your help with these quilt drives.
Hugs, Jan Mac