Monday, September 26, 2011

French Bouquet Quilt Progress

I spent quite a few hours pottering and fiddling with this quilt in progress yesterday.  Ages ago I posted an occasional update picture of the centre block applique and the star blocks when I began making them.  Some time ago I decided to make a start on stitching the star blocks and sashing strips with little stars together but put it away a little frustrated.  So I finally taped up a design wall of sorts and tackled the beast.  I don't want to be churlish, I love this quilt design, but the pattern instructions leave a lot to be desired.  I'm not mathematically minded or gifted with the ability to see the most logical and practical way to attack some there was some unpicking and a few rude words before I finally got it together.  Of course once I got it right it looked so obvious and simple!  I'm talking about the top left corner blocks, only four of them!  If the instructions had been....well instructions... it would have taken much less time out of my afternoon and dinner wouldn't have been a thrown together pasta (so I could get outa the kitchen and back to the sewing machine).  Just saying.

So here it is thus far.

It looks so straight forward, I know!

This is how the finished quilt should look.

I plan to have it looking like this in the not too distant future, lol.  Truly.

Hope life is good for you, it's a happy place at my house with Ben getting stronger and better every day.

Happy stitching,

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Civil War Blocks 33-38 and Ben's Surgery a Success

Firstly, thank you to all of you who sent prayers and positive thoughts for my son, Ben (24 yrs), who went in for spinal surgery a week ago.  After nearly 20 months of agony and the last 2 months barely able to walk or move he had the surgery last week and it has been a wonderful success.  For the first time in all these months he is pain free apart from the normal soreness from having surgery but he tells me that's nothing!  He is now walking, standing straight and tall and has a smile and genuine happiness about him, does my heart good!
Thank God for modern medicine!

On the quilting front I spent yesterday catching up on my Civil War blocks from Barbara Brackman's weekly quilt-along.  I've completed blocks 33 - 38.  Here they are.

Block 33 Indiana Puzzle

Block 34 Rosebud

Block 35 Star of the West

Block 36 Kentucky Crossroads

Block 37 Confederate Rose

Block 38 Ohio Star

I'm off to make some more of the Kona Cotton solids stars I was working on last post.  Spring weather has been lovely though the nights are still quite cool.

Happy stitching,

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Quick Star Blocks

Some months back (November 2010...I didn't think it was that far back ;) ....) I was the lucky winner of a Jelly Roll of Robert Kaufman Kona Cottons in lovely muted shades.  I always knew I would make a quilt with a black background with these fabrics.  I was skipping through Youtube looking at quilting videos and came across a Missouri Star Quilt Company video on star blocks from 2 1/2" strips, I was convinced these would be ideal for my Kona Jelly Roll.  So over the weekend I made these.

The cornerstones are a rich purple unfortunately washed out by the flash.  I'll use black for the sashing.

The blocks are 12" as they are now.  I have enough for a double bed quilt.  These blocks go together so quickly and easily it will take no time at all.  If you are interested the video on Youtube is well worth a look, click on the link you tube Jelly Star To see a whole quilt made up, check out this video you tube Jelly Star quilt
I think this is a great pattern if you need to satisfy your "instant gratification" 21st century gene, lol.

I don't have any civil war blocks as I'm a little behind but fully intend getting them done in the next few days.

The following is not quilting related, just a warning....

I've been preoccupied as my beautiful son  (24 yrs) is going in for spinal surgery in a week. He has two ruptured discs in his lower back (L4 and L5) and for nearly 2 yrs he has been in the most intolerable pain.  Standing by while your brave son has tears running down his cheeks and is moaning in agony, it is so hard not being able to do anything to help.  Last Monday we spent the entire day at the hospital ( Royal North Shore for those in NSW, Australia) to have all the pre-op tests, scans and X-rays done. I had to drop my son at the hospital at 6am Tuesday ready for surgery at 8am (to remove the part of the discs pressing on the sciatic nerve and free up the nerve path).  We had spent a terrible night because his local Doctor has miscalculated his pain meds so he had run out on Monday, not a night either of us would ever want to repeat.  There had been emergencies and he hadn't gone in for his op until 12 o'clock.  I rang at 1pm to see how the op had gone, while I was on hold our call waiting started to beep, I usually ignore it but for some reason I answered, it was my son telling me they couldn't do the surgery. On Monday 10 - 12 hospital professionals had missed the fact that he hadn't had the most important scan, the MRI, which the neuro-surgeon has to have to do the surgery!  He was in utter depair the poor boy, they discovered the lack of MRI at the operating theatre doors!!!  I had to get in the car and drive back to Sydney and bring him home.  We managed to get an emergency appointment for an MRI scan and the hospital has given him another surgery date, 13th September 2011 because they admit the dropped the ball, hah! dropped the ball alright.  Poor Ben was such a mess, he has lived with such appalling pain for so long, his life has been on hold while we waited 12 months for the surgery date.  He spends his life lying on the sofa propped with pillows and hot water bottles and taking pain medication that barely makes it tolerable. Sorry to moan , but I must say I feel so much better getting that off my chest, lol.  Say a prayer or send positive thoughts for his operation on the 13th September, he sure needs all the positivity he can get, the poor little sod, it's been quite a nightmare.

Loving the warm weather that has been creeping up on us, 1st September being the first day of Spring for us hanging off the bottom of the world.

Happy stitching,