Fairy Gardens

OK, now it’s time for something completely different… no quilts in this blog!  One of my dearest friends had a birthday recently and I decided to make her a Fairy Garden.  I had won a little Christmas Fairy Garden at the Cactus Society Christmas party (yes, y’all, I am a card carrying member of the Fort Worth Cactus and Succulent Society – who would have guessed?!).  Anyways, it was so cute, I had to make one for my friend.

fairy-garden-1

The Christmas Fairy Garden was in a plastic container and had a Santa Claus along with stars and ornaments.  I found some adorable fairies, bridges and other cute fairy garden decorations (including the rocks and mosses) at Hobby Lobby.  I get a catalog from Plow and Hearth and it is full of fairy garden supplies as well.  Apparently this is a big thing right now!

The tub also came from Hobby Lobby.  I watched a few YouTube videos on Fairy Gardens and found that you could fill the bottom half of a deep container with kitty litter.  Cheap, light weight and will absorb excess moisture.  On top of the kitty litter you add a good layer of potting soil, then start planting and decorating.

Most of these plants are cacti and succulents, although I do have one teeny tiny iris.  These won’t require much water.  Keep in mind that you can use other plants as well.  If you want to keep your fairy garden out on the patio, some annuals like marigolds would be super cute.

fairy-garden-3

The blue rocks for the creek were salvaged from the Christmas Fairy Garden but you can find these rocks at most aquarium stores (also saw some at Hobby Lobby).

I love the fairy, the chickens, mushrooms and other decorations.  Once I started I could have filled up a container twice this size!

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I would say the most difficult part was trying to wrap this gift without messing it up!

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These are so cute and fun to make – wouldn’t a fairy garden with bunnies and tiny eggs be a cute Easter decoration?  Uh oh! Somebody stop me!  I need to get back to quilting!!!

Have a great week, y’all!

JSS January Bee

Our bee day was last Thursday and Thursday was the last day of the TVQG Retreat!  So Annelle and I drove straight from retreat up at Lake Texoma to bee at Peggy’s house. When we arrived everyone was very seriously discussing the Block Exchange.

Block-Exchange-discussionBut soon Judy and Sally and maybe a few others disappeared to divvy up the blocks.  So I took the opportunity to explore Peggy’s quilt studio.  It is upstairs a lot like mine but it has this great big beautiful window!  (Dear Santa, can I have one of these for Christmas?)

Peggy's-windowLook at the cute doll on the stairs!  Maybe I should have been looking at the stairs and not the doll – just sayin’!

A-sweet-doll-embroiders-on-Soon the block exchange gals were back and we all got a cute bag with our blocks.  This time I’m only doing 4 and they all seem fun and relatively doable.  But I think dear sweet Lynda was not feeling so dear and sweet when she saw some of her blocks!

Lynda-in-shock-with-blocksFrom what I understand there are some true challenges in this batch – something about an “heirloom out of a feed bag.”  Can’t wait to see that one!

After lunch (with some super yummy soup and lots of salads, cookies, and such) we commenced with show and tell.

Dede was up first.  Isn’t she pretty?

DedeAnd isn’t her orchid applique pretty too?

Dede's-show-and-tellKaren brought this very cool quilt.  Are those hearts or chevrons?  The pattern construction was very unique.  I never got to see the name of the pattern.  Maybe Karen can share that in the comments.

Karen's-show-and-tellSally brought several quilts to share.  This one was a top constructed by her great grandmother and she just had Dede quilt it.  Sally remembers some of the fabrics used in the quilt.

Sally's-show-and-tellSally also created this cute little Valentine quilt to hang on her desk to hide her cords and cables.

Sally's-valentine-show-and-Here’s a close up:

Sally's-valentine-close-upSally has been busy!  Here is a baby quilt for a new grandbaby coming soon (he was known as Tie-Breaker but now known as Ian).

Sally's-tie-breaker-show-anJules brought this fabulous 3-D quilt.  I love this pattern!

Jule's-3-d-quilt-show-and-tJules also brought this beautiful woolly table runner:

Jule's-wooly-applique-show-And, busy as a bee, Jules is now working on this bright and challenging project!

Jule's-bright-show-and-tellPatt brought this finished quilt made for her granddaughter (?).  Love the neutrals!

Patt's-show-and-tellAnnelle finished this stellar space crystal up at retreat!

Annelle's-space-crystal-shoAnd Suz brought this super cute, super pink baby quilt!  Love it!

Suz's-baby-quiltPatti had a baby quilt too!  Super cute, super easy panel quilt!

Patti's-panel-baby-quiltI brought two show and tells, but my pictures are from retreat.  First up is a quilt made up from the blocks received in the last two years of JSS block exchanges:

my-block-exchange-show-and-Notice, this was retreat PJ day and I was still wearing my purple slippers!

At retreat I also worked on my pineapple quilt – not quite finished, but showed it off anyway!

my-pineapple-show-and-tellLook at these big bright hexagon blocks in Cindy’s show and tell.  Looks like a wonderful summer quilt!

Cindy's-show-and-tellMona brought this giant project of a quilt she has finished for a client.  She’s behind there somewhere! Great work Mona!

Mona's-show-and-tellLast but not least – Peggy (our most gracious hostess) showed us her Sue Spargo wool project.  Each and every one of these blocks is a feast for the eyes!  So much detail and exquisite stitching!

Peggy's-sue-spargo-woolly-sI love bee day and any day I can spend with some of the most wonderful ladies in the world – like this beautiful lady, Suz.

SuzNow next bee day in February will be a real treat – a Trash to Treasure Exchange!  JSS’ers – bee there or bee square!

Westering Women Block of the Month

Well, Barbara Brackman is at it again with a new block of the month!

Westering Women BOM

This time we will be exploring the history of those brave women who moved westward in covered wagons.  A block will be presented as well as history and mythology.  This just started so please check out http://civilwarquilts.blogspot.com/ if you want to join in.

The first block is called Independence Square since for many the journey began in Independence, Missouri.  Here is my block 1:

WW-Block-1---Independence-SI am hoping some of these women are bringing sheep along with them since I have a lot of this sheep background fabric. 😉  I plan on using mostly the sheep and my civil war reproduction fabric for this project.

So, let the journey begin!

 

JSS Christmas Party – Part 2

OK, on to the second half of the bajillion pictures I took at the JSS 2015 Christmas Party.  If you missed it, here is a link to JSS Christmas Party – Part 1.

The day was filled with fun and surprises.  One of the biggest surprises:

PamPam!  All the way from Alaska!  We love you Pam!

Another surprise were these fun gift bags from Sally.  Each had a red leather cord holder for our cell phone chargers embroidered with our name and some yummy candy!  We love you Sally!

Goodie-bagShow and Tell

After a scrumptious lunch we commenced with show and tell!  Dede was up first with this pretty quilt.  I believe she said she made it for herself!

show-and-tell-DedeDede also showed a Hawaiian quilt she is quilting for a client:

show-and-tell-Dede-HawaiianAnd finally a Surprise Quilt for Pam! Pam was thrilled!

show-and-tell-Dede's-quilt-Mona brought a stunning client’s quilt she’s quilting.

show-and-tell-Mona-quilt-foLala brought a quilt she made from last year’s block exchange blocks.  I made one of those coffee cups!

show-and-tell-Lala-with-lasShe also shared a challenge she is working on with a group back in California.  Interpretations of different posters, paintings or scenes.  I believe her’s is Rosie the Riveter.

show-and-tell-Lala-with-chaBarb’s show and tell was a quilt she quilted at the North Richland Hills Library.  So cool that they have a long arm for public use!  Take the lessons and pay for the price of the bobbin – all of 50¢ I think!  Great job Barb!

show-and-tell---barbJudy’s show and tell was a quilt from last year’s exchange blocks.  The top corner blocks are comprised of 2 different blocks cut in half and stitched together with the other… did that make sense?

show-and-tell---Judy-with-lDavene brought this absolutely magnificent quilt made from handkerchiefs, doilies and other embroidered pieces collected from her mother, aunts and other relatives.  It is gorgeously quilted by Susan Corbett.

show-and-tell-DaveneLynda shared this cute baby quilt:

show-and-tell-Lynda-1And this jolly Christmas wall hanging.

show-and-tell-Lynda-2Judy C. bought this kit at the Houston Quilt Show … this year!!!!  And she already has this cute and whimsical Christmas quilt!  Wow!

show-and-tell-JudyWe also had all the Tuffet makers show and tell!  Here’s the show and I think the “tell” was “never again!”

show-and-tell-TuffetsKaren’s Turning Twenty quilt.  Love the colors and love the yellow corner stones!

show-and-tell-karenPeggy brought her quilt that she made from last year’s exchange blocks.  I think they were 16 patch Aunt Gracie blocks.  I love all the prairie points!

show-and-tell-Peggy-with-laPeggy also brought this stunning basket quilt.  The basket blocks used Inklingo, the applique used a fabric that was our Applique Society challenge fabric.  Peggy used the Broderie Perse applique method.  This is one simply stunning quilt!

show-and-tell-PeggyOk, that was show and tell.  Wasn’t it wonderful? Shall I go on with the pin cushion exchange pictures or save them for another day?  Oh, lets go for it!

Pin Cushion Chinese Auction Exchange

All the gift bags and boxes were gathered on the coffee table:

pin-cushionsFirst up was Lynn.  She was stolen from several times so got to open several very cute pin cushions.  They weren’t hers for long!

Pin-cushions-lynnpin-cushion-lynn-againpin-cushion-lynn-3Connie was the lucky lady to get this pin cushion made by Peggy:

pin-cushion-connieJules opened these blue and white cuties from… (Hungary maybe?). I believe Davene, drawn by the blue and white, eventually ended up with these.

pin-cushion-JulesBarb loved the box and loved the cute elephant pin cushion inside!

pin-cushion-barbMona got this ruler box with little cubby holes for pin cushions and other trinkets.

pin-cushion-monaPeggy got a key lime pin cushion pie.

pin-cushion-PeggyI opened this adorable pig.  It was soon stolen and I stole a very cute chicken.

me-with-pincushionI’m sorry I didn’t get a picture of all the pin cushions and who got what but this was fast, wild, crazy and fun!

Before we all packed up our goodies, Judy gathered us out front for a group picture – taken by Sally’s sweet hubby Dwight.  Thanks Dwight!

dwightJSS Bee Christmas 2015

Bee-Group-120315Merry Christmas, y’all!

JSS Christmas Party – Part 1

OK, y’all, I took a bajillion pictures during our most fabulous Christmas party last week.  So, rather than post them all in one blog, I need to spread them out over 2 or 3 blogs. So here goes …

First up… Thank you, thank you, thank you to Sally for hostessing a wonderful party!  So much fun and laughter!  And as Annelle says “We will never see flamingos the same again!”

Sally-and-her-flamingosThere was lots of great food so there was lots of fun time visiting in the kitchen!

Visiting-in-the-kitchenAfter the food and conversation, there were three major items on the agenda.  Block exchange, show and tell and, last but not least, the pin cushion Chinese auction exchange.

Block Exchange

Bags were setup in Sally’s guest room so everyone participating could slip the blocks they made for each other into the appropriate bags.

Exchange-Block-BagsJudy gave everyone (even those not in the block exchange) a slip of paper with an interesting question and a number.  Some of the questions were “What is your favorite quilting tool?” or “What’s your favorite block?” or “Tell us about an interesting quilt shop” or “What’s your favorite cookie?” …  I know the answer to that one – me!

So first up was Sally!  She answered her question and then got to open up her blocks.

Sally-with-her-blocksLinda J followed up and got these beautiful heart blocks.Linda-J-with-her-blocksJan wasn’t a participant in the block exchange but had a fun time describing her favorite quilting tool – her whacker (aka rotary cutter).

Jan-with-no-blocksPeggy got some very pretty red and white blocks.  I think she looks happy!

Peggy-with-her-blocksAs our newest newby Annelle didn’t do the block exchange but after answering her question, she pretended she was Nancy and opened hers…

Annelle-with-no-blocksAnnelle-opens-Nancy's-blockThen it was my turn… I don’t have a picture of my blocks from the party (since I was taking the pictures) so here they are up on my design wall.  I also have 8 from last year’s block exchange so this is going to be a wonderful quilt.  Thank you to everyone who made me a block!  I cherish each and every one of them!

My-block-exchange-blocksWe had several ask for these wonderful house blocks.  Here is Karen with her blocks.  I made one and I love the pattern.  This may be fun to do next year!

Karen-with-her-blocksGloria was up next to answer one of the questions…

Gloria-reads-her-questionAnd then Barb answered her question…

Barb-with-no-blocks-but-newLanelle was up next with her question “what’s your favorite cookie?”  She knew the correct answer right off the bat!

LanelleMadelyn somehow turned her requested 5 blocks into 20!  Pretty cool… I’ll have to remember that trick next year too!

Madelyn-with-her-blocksDavene went from requesting the most difficult block in the world last year (which resulted in her divine Mea Culpa quilt) to the easiest block this year.  Thank you Davene!

Davene-with-her-blocksDede with no blocks but a question to answer and a surprise … Pam!!!

Dede-with-no-blocks

Suz will eventually collect enough of these cute spool blocks to make a wonderful quilt!

Suz-with-her-blocksLynda requested Civil War blocks.  She might want to share that spool block with Suz! 🙂

Lynda-with-her-blocksSue Gallo wasn’t in on the block exchange but answered her question and was greatly admired for her fabulous taste in boots!

Sue-Gallo-with-no-blocksThen Sue substituted in for the missing Marianne – opening up her blocks:

Sue-opens-Marianne's-blocksJules very descriptively answering her question …

JulianaPatti was thrilled with her Sunbonnet Sue blocks.  I did one of these and it was so much fun!

Patti-with-her-blocksSue H. was one of the house block girls…aren’t they pretty?

Sue-H-with-her-blocksNewby Judy with her question to answer…

Judy-with-no-blocks
She was followed by Lynn … who, like Madelyn, worked magic to make 14 blocks out of 7.  Y’all are tricky!

Lynns-blocksConnie was up next … yes, the California gals were there!!!

Connie-answers-her-questionAnd here’s Lala (aka Linda)…

Lala-laughingLala participated long distance and asked for New Year’s Eve blocks.

Lala-with-her-blocksCindy up next to answer her question and questions about her upcoming move to the Houston area.  She must come back once a month for bee day (and to see her grand kids)!

Cindy-with-her-questionMona asked for these really cool blocks:

Mona-with-her-blocksLast but not least in the block exchange was Judy.  Love these baskets!  I have this pattern too.  Maybe I should do baskets next year instead of houses. Hmmmm…

Judy-with-her-blocksThat takes care of the block exchange.  I think it was time for lunch!

Show and tell and the pin cushion exchange will be coming soon ….

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