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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Sparkle Baby Quilt Complete!

Remember the cute sparkle baby quilt I was working on?  Well, it's done!  I made two at a time, so basting these beauties was a fun task:

I made one long backing--over 5 yards of fabric!

One gradient one way...

And the other the other way.

The Cricut love continues: I used foil iron-on to embellish the center of both quilts in the same way:

Looks cool from the back side.

After it's applied.

I love that this iron-on can be much more detailed than using traditional applique methods.

One was a gift for friend from work who was expecting a baby girl soon:

And the other for my college suitemate's new baby girl:

Lesson learned: white circles need extra interfacing to not "show through!"
I plan on offering customized circle baby quilts for sale soon, so if you're interested, I'm all ears!  I'm still working on the whole quilt photography thing (I really need a photographer/photo editing friend, don't I?), so if there are any questions, just shoot me an email: rellocin (at) gmail (dot) com. 

Recent Reads:

The Couple Next DoorThe Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I liked it alright, but just alright. This isn't some genre-busting breakout novel--it's another thriller that causes you to guess whodunit and why, and you diligently read to the end to see if you're right. I have to admit that I had to keep second-guessing my predictions, so that kept it more interesting than most novels. Overall, good, not great.

View all my reviews

Apollo 8: The Thrilling Story of the First Mission to the MoonApollo 8: The Thrilling Story of the First Mission to the Moon by Jeffrey Kluger
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book gets a rare 5 star rating from me. Wow, what a treat! Having grown up in the space shuttle era, the excitement surrounding the Apollo missions were a mystery to me. I think Mr. Kluger captured it well--I kept finding myself getting anxious and excited about the first mission to the moon! Of course, there are no spoilers to alert of here (they made it there and back), but I have to recommend the audiobook version. It's well read, and there are a few special treats at the end. This is one I'll play for the kiddos when they're older.

View all my reviews

On our tabletop:

Sherlock Holmes, Consulting Detective by Asmodee/Space Cowboys

Tao Long, a Kickstarter reward.  Hubby says it should be called "Too Long!"
And our go-to current fave: Pandemic Legacy, Season 2

That's it for now.  More monsters coming your way soon!  Until then, God Bless!

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Friday, May 25, 2018

BabySchep's Monster Quilt: Part 4

Great news!  No, my new machine hasn't come in yet, although I should probably start trying to come up with names for him.  Hmm...maybe a contest is in order?  We'll see.  No, I'm here to share the next two finished blocks for BabySchep's birthday quilt:

Love the glasses.  A lot of Antonie Alexander's patterns include bespectacled folks.

It's okay to have a girly monster in a boy's quilt, no?
These monsters are a lot of fun to make.  In case you missed it, here is Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3

This post marks the halfway point for the applique blocks.  I now have 8 more monsters to finish--at this point, they have all been fused and are ready for their embroidered finish.  This particular quilt calls for simply pieced borders, so I'm likely close to the actual halfway point for this project.  I will keep y'all posted.

Recent Reads:

Dragon TeethDragon Teeth by Michael Crichton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am predisposed to love everything Crichton, and can't wait to introduce his work to my children, and my parents did for me. I'm also amused that they keep pulling these out of the vault, so to speak, which is a testament to his work ethic. Despite its tantalizing cover, this book does not fall into the Jurassic series--it's historical fiction about the early days of digging dinosaur fossils. It was a fun read (or listen, in my case) for anyone, and just about the only way you'd get me to read a Western, lol.

View all my reviews

Sex on the Moon: The Amazing Story Behind the Most Audacious Heist in HistorySex on the Moon: The Amazing Story Behind the Most Audacious Heist in History by Ben Mezrich
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Well, this was a book I judged by its title. Sorry, but my prudish upbringing leads me to outright reject books with the word "sex" in the title, regardless of how many times it pops up in my recommended books list. I finally took a closer look at it--the audiobook is read by Casey Affleck. Ugh. Another year of ignoring the title. Finally, I found myself in between books, and this one was available without a wait. The first third of the book was rather dull--I mean, can't you just hear Affleck's voice droning on and on about Mormons and teen marriage? Then, it picked up. What a crazy story! What really gets to me is how I never knew about the moon rock heist when this guy was caught practically in my backyard, housed in the jail I drove past almost daily! I found I could relate to this tale--while I never interned at NASA, I've participated in other geeky away-from-home adventures, so I could picture the scene. What I failed to understand was how easily his coconspirators agreed to help him. Short but interesting.

View all my reviews

My StoryMy Story by Elizabeth Smart
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Elizabeth's ordeal happened when I was still in high school, so it was very illuminating to read it as an adult. I felt like she was rather defensive at times, which is really a shame. Overall, I was fascinated by her story, and am now much more alarmed for my children's safety.

View all my reviews

While I purchased a few new board games recently, none of them have made their way onto our tabletop.  Now that our team is out of the playoffs, I'm sure I'll have a title to share soon. 

Linking up with Finished or Not Friday this week. Until next time, God Bless!

Monday, May 21, 2018

Crafty Goodness Bonanza

My husband and I follow a pretty strict (yet rather generous) budget.  I completely busted that budget this month on crafty retail therapy.  There was a deal on the Cricut EasyPress machine:

"Oooh, wait until Daddy sees the bill for this!" -BabySchep
Very cool doodad.  I hope to use it a lot in the future, but that will require some dedicated sewing time.  I also purchased next school year's Abeka Book curriculum for the boys:

We buy the unbound books to avoid those pesky perforated pages.

The 3-year old curriculum appears to largely reinforce the concepts introduced in the 2-year old program.

Lil'Schep is pretty excited about his upcoming memory verses!
And the biggest purchase of them all: 
If you're reading this, you likely have an idea of the price tag on this guy.  (I know most of y'all refer to your machines in the feminine, but my machines are boys!)  I saved up for a while to be able to afford him.  I bought it from Gigi's Fabric Shop in Brandon, Florida.  Gigi offers lots of perks and support when you purchase a machine from her shop, so while she's not paying me for saying this, I feel that we quilters should support our local shops when we can.  It hasn't arrived yet, but I'm excited about picking it up in a week or so (and having Gigi show me how to thread it!). 

So, no finished blocks or projects this time, but still quite a lot going on in the sewing room.  The Stanley Cup playoffs are currently occupying just about every other night of my time, so I'm trying desperately to get a little bit of handwork done while on the couch. 

I'm hoping to have another monster or two to share soon.  Until then, God Bless!

Monday, May 7, 2018

Hexies and Pizza

No finished blocks this week.  (Or last week, for that matter!)  A nasty cold knocked me out for the count, rendering me (practically) useless for a week and a half.  Remember when I mentioned all those CLEs I had coming up?  Well, one required an overnight stay at the Orlando airport.  Never again.  Perhaps my negative feelings about that airport are exacerbated by how darned miserable I felt, but it made me appreciate the gleaming, pristine, Tampa International Airport so much more.  Why do I mention this?  Because I planned to baste some hexies during lectures, and managed to baste ZERO! 

Not to be completely defeated, I did get some more basted during another CLE back home:

I've been using one of those plastic zipper pouches that pillowcases are sold in for this project.  A little cramped, but it'll do until I get properly organized.
 And that's the extent of my sewing related post.  Then again, this blog isn't strictly about sewing, is it?  I'm also documenting the crafty things I get to do as a mom of two boys.  This weekend, we made pizza:

The spread.  And the excited kiddo who kept eating the ham before we got started.

His idea of evenly distributing cheese.

After mom's intervention, we could move on to more toppings.

The final product pre-baking. 

Proud kiddo with his finished pizza.

This one is mine.
We had fun making mini pizzas, and the little miniature crusts from Aldi were perfect.  We made meat lover's pizza this time, but we'll add veggies next time. 

Now, I know y'all are dying to know about the books I've finished over the past two weeks!

102 Minutes CD: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers102 Minutes CD: The Untold Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers by Jim Dwyer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Short, sad, and angering. Listening to this book was a little like watching the news coverage of the attack all over again. Seventeen years ago, I was too young to appreciate a lot of the information that came to light about the buildings and rescue efforts. Now, it's simply heartbreaking. If you're going to read this, just be ready to be sad and mad for a while.

View all my reviews The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-DiscoveryThe Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery by Ian Morgan Cron
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is one I'd save for print. Even though this audiobook was read by the author, the subject matter is just too detailed to adequately absorb on the first listen-through. I'd never even heard of the enneagram before this book, so it definitely piqued my interest, but my experience with this book will probably keep me from checking it out any time soon.

View all my reviews

On our tabletop:

I hope to have more monsters to share with you soon.  Until then, God Bless!

Friday, April 20, 2018

BabySchep's Monster Quilt: Part 3

Hello, and welcome to week 3 of this monster quilt journey!  In case you missed it, here are weeks one and two.  Once again, this week will be short and sweet.

Our yard sale on Saturday was (mostly) a success, so I was pretty busy/tired this week.  I'll have to pick up the pace if I'm going to keep up with these weekly progress posts!

Goofy monster.  Anyone else a fan of those Toscana blenders? 

I'll call this one Greenhorn.  There are very few areas in life where I actually feel "experienced," so I can relate.
More cutting has happened on the long term hexie project.  I have some seminars coming up for work, so it won't be too rude to baste while listening, no?
In other news:

Recent Reads:
The Woman in the WindowThe Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Not very impressed. I thought this would be another Flynn-esque psychological thriller, but it just wasn't that thrilling. Yes, it retained my interest long enough to get through to the end, but it wasn't the "page turner" (I actually listened to the audiobook) I expected it to be. Perhaps that's partially due to the soft-spoken narration of the audiobook, or the fact that I had it figured out from the beginning. Not a bad read, just don't expect it to be one that you rave about to your friends.

View all my reviews

I used to have a set of Disney read along books as a kid, so I started buying some for the boys.  Now they come with CDs instead of cassette tapes!  Our library offers free access to virtually all of the Disney read along digital audiobooks, but there's just something nice about teaching a kid to use a CD player.  I've started with Lil'Schep's favorite Disney character:

We still have a long way to go patience-wise!

Nothing new on our tabletop this week.  Stay tuned. 

Perhaps I'll actually remember to link up to Finished or Not Friday this week.  Until next time, God Bless!

Friday, April 13, 2018

BabySchep's Monster Quilt: Part 2

Wow, has it been a week already?  And I've actually blogged two weeks in a row??  Something crazy must be going on.  Anyway, in case you missed it, check out Part 1 of this quilt.  

It'll be short and sweet this time--here are the next two blocks I've managed to complete for our little monster's quilt:

Red eye is a tad creepy for me.  I'll go with a less creepy color next time. 

I love the baby monster!
In case you're wondering, I use Sulky 12wt cotton thread for the hand blanket stitched edges. 

In other news, I'm having my first grown-up yard sale of my own tomorrow (eek!), so I will need much patience, I'm sure!  I've got a bunch of quilty things in the sale, so if you're in the Lakeland area, come on by!

Linking up with Finished or Not Friday this week. 

Recent Reads:

Flat Broke with Two Goats: A Memoir of AppalachiaFlat Broke with Two Goats: A Memoir of Appalachia by Jennifer McGaha
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a delightful listen! This book came at just the right time to remind me why we're so budget-conscious--to prevent the financial collapse that this family experienced. Admittedly, at times I judged these people for their poor decision making, and at other times, it was simply laugh-out-loud funny. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and would recommend it.

View all my reviews

I've been trying to introduce Lil' Schep to audiobooks, and so far, he likes the musical books the best:

On our tabletop:

Settlers of Canaan.  Yes, Canaan.  I have a wonderful collection of Bible themed games!

Medici, the Card Game

Until next time, God Bless!