A Little Motivation

The most wonderful thing happened last week.

Saturday evening, I opened a package from Mrs. Terri. I knew it was a graduation gift. Mom asked me if I wanted to open it now or later. She was like, “maybe it will motivate you to finish school.” and I was like, “Mom, I don’t need any more motivation to finish.” But Mrs. Terri wanted me to open it, so I did. And I am so thrilled.

Y’all, the Pin Pals made me a quilt.

Several of the ladies made quilt blocks and embroidered a message, or just signed their name in the corner of their block. They picked such beautiful fabrics. There are pink and red flowers. There are text fabrics with different quilt terms. There’s a block with “Baby Ruth” embroidered in big red script letters. (That’s what all the ladies call me!) The backing is a green and white triangle pattern. Mrs. Terri quilted the entire thing with meanders and stars.

It is so perfect!

No one has ever made me a quilt before. I have always been the giver and maker of quilts! Being on the receiving end, I understand now how special and meaningful quilts truly are. They are the product of love, kindness, and generosity. To me, it’s a reminder that though distance may separate us, it cannot lessen the love that I have for my Pin Pals and the Pin Pals have for me. It is a comfort and an encouragement (not to mention it keeps me warm at night!).

That Saturday, I was sad that the sewing guild will not be here to celebrate my graduation with me. When I look at this quilt, and as I’ve read the messages they wrote on my card, I see that they’re already celebrating. They’re already proud of me and they are already excited for the next chapter of my life to start.

I think Mrs. Rose said it just right:

“I will be right there with you in spirit as you graduate and you will know we are all there with you when you wrap yourself in the quilt. You are loved.”

I can’t get over how amazing this gift is. I’m never letting this one go.

Now I really have to finish. I said I didn’t need any more motivation, but the Lord knew I needed this.

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Physics is finished. I took my last test yesterday! All I have left are two writing assignments for English. I’m almost done.

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Girls’ Night.

I spent the night at Mrs. Nancy’s house.

Which I think is amazing because I don’t do sleepovers very often. Frankly, I love my bed and the comfort of my home. (But that doesn’t stop me from trying to spend the night somewhere every once and a while.) Ever since I was little, I had trouble sleeping at other people’s homes. I would beg my dad to come pick me up around midnight, or I would be up every hour of the night and miserable the next day because I was so tired. But there’s something about Mr. Rex and Mrs. Nancy’s house that makes me feel at peace. The last time I slept over, E. came with me and I didn’t wake up once in the middle of the night! This time, I went by myself because I was helping Mrs. Nancy with her quilt and Mr. Rex was out of town. I think I woke up only once, but fell right back to sleep!

 

So the sleepovers will continue to happen.

 

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I had so much fun with Mrs. Nancy! We sewed and talked. We drank tea and shared stories. We had our devotions in the evening and prayed together. On the way to church, we sang songs and hymns to prepare our hearts. I love that I can share my heart and my dreams with her and that in her years of experience of walking with the Lord and in her knowledge of Him, she encourages me according to what the Bible says. One of the gentlemen at church pointed out that our time together was exactly what Paul was instructing the church to do:

the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things— that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.
Titus 2:3‭-‬5 NKJV

(Now, y’all know I’m not married, but you get the idea.) The older ones are teaching the younger ones. Encouraging them and loving them the way Christ did when He was on earth.

I’m just so thankful that in addition to my godly parents, I have kindred spirits like Mrs. Nancy that God has placed in my life to encourage me in my walk with Him. It’s a bonus that I share my love for people and quilting with her. 🙂

I Made These (II)

So it’s been a while since I’ve updated y’all on my various projects. Here are a few that I managed to complete over the past four months or so:

I made 30 doll quilts for the sewing guild’s doll charity project. Each of them are different and they were an excellent way for me to work on new quilting designs.

I finished the quilt for our third floor. I just love the rainbow batiks! I really liked quilting the swirls. I think that might become a new go-to for future quilts.

I made four wonky LOVE blocks using @kelbysews’ pattern for Stash Builder Box’s Ambassadors in Waiting program! I LOVED participating in their little challenge because not only did I get to try out a cool pattern and beautiful fabric, but all of the blocks made were going to be a part of quilts for children in need.

 

I made three little Bella clutches, one for my grandma, her sister, and one of her dearest friends. This is seriously my favorite make-up bag pattern. I would totally make more of them if I had more zippers that were the right length.

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I checked off an item on my “want to sew” list: a white tulle skirt.

 

I made a mug rug to accompany some hot chocolate and Christmas Crack for a yankee gift swap. ^_^

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And last, but certainly not least, my ugly Christmas sweater.

It’s so fabulous, I know.

Rambles

(I apologize for my run-on sentences.)

This past week has been crazy and it’s only half over!

My oldest brother is currently hobbling around on crutches whenever he can muster enough strength to roll out of bed. His ankle has been in pain for three days now. Turns out, he sprained it last week, and somehow he contracted an infection in that general area. He’s on antibiotics; he’s been to the doctor twice and the hospital once. We’re praying that he recovers quickly and that he’s back to his happy self.

Mom and I are busy working on a quilt. My quilt projects are piling up (like seriously, our fit model, Gertie, currently has three quilt tops and batting draped over her.) We’re basting one, and that should be ready to quilt by tomorrow. I have two quilt tops cut out that need to get sewn after my other quilts are basted. I’ve been working on doll quilts for the sewing guild when I haven’t been working on my big quilts. I’ve knocked out a dozen over the past two weeks, and I’d like to do a dozen more since they’re great practice for new quilting techniques. 🙂

School is school. Hah.

I have letters to write because I have such lovely pen pals who take the time to keep in touch with me. ❤ It’s been wonderful. Every time I had a rough day, a letter would show up in our mailbox. One day, I was really missing my friends and two of them happened to write to me on the same day. That really lifted my spirits.

My grandparents are coming next month and I’m super excited to see them.

My other grandparents are coming in October (hopefully) along with my aunt and uncle. I am very excited to see them. All of them.

I found out Love & the Outcome are releasing their new album on my birthday. I’ve already preordered my copy. (Happy birthday to me!)

My friend runs this very cute online shop called Olive and Pine and she has lots of adorable things on sale including this doggy bowtie. Definitely check out her shop. Everything is handpicked by her and lovingly made by small business creatives. I ordered an Earl Grey Hot Chocolate mix and I’m so excited to make myself a cup during the fall season. 🙂Doggie BowtieEarl Grey Hot ChocolateWander Passport Cover

And…that’s it.

I can’t believe summer is pretty much over. I’m looking forward to fall. That’s my favorite season and where I live, lots of trees will be turning orange and red in a month or so. 😉

Life is a little crazy right now. But I’m okay with a little crazy.

I Made These.

Two of my dearest friends graduated from high school this year, so I painted two canvases and wrote Proverbs 3:5-6 over it. That particular Scripture had been on my heart for a while and for quite a few months, I had been praying those verses for these two friends. I thought it would be a nice gift for them as they enter the new seasons of life. 🙂

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About three months ago, Mrs. Rose sent me a Bella Clutch kit all cut out and ready to sew. I finally got my sewing machine up and running last week (yay!) and sewed this cute bag while Mom worked on her part of the baby quilt.

This quilt was so much fun to make! I’m in love with the vibrant colors. We got most of the batiks from http://www.jellyrollfabric.net/, but we also used some batiks from our stash to add some variety. The binding is actually a hand-painted batik from a quilt kit I forgot I had. I quilted this one using my leaf stencil on the colors and I also quilted simple vines on the black sashing.

Cool story: God has this amazing way of providing for our needs. At first, we were going to use a solid black broadcloth for the backing because it would match the sashing on the quilt top and we couldn’t find a better fabric that matched. We were really kicking ourselves because we have so much fabric, yet none really came close to a winner. I was going through a bag that holds my unfinished sweatshirt jacket (that I have given up on) and at the bottom of the bag was that beautiful purple batik! I forgot I had kept that aside to bind my jacket, but it was pretty much the exact size we needed for this quilt and the batik pattern was perfect! It was made for this quilt. God is just amazing like that. 🙂

We had a card-making day earlier in the month with a sweet family from church. It was really nice to take a day off from school and just use the paper, stamps, decorative scissors, and stickers to make beautiful cards. I made about a dozen or so. 😉 I think we’ll have to do this again because I still have an enormous amount of card-making stuff hiding under my bed.

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I was able to transform an old composition notebook into my very own smashbook. I’m so pleased with how it turned out!

 

A couple other projects are in progress so you will definitely be seeing more of what I’ve been up to. 🙂

Let me just say that it feels so good to have my sewing machine up and running again and to have all my crafting supplies unpacked at last!

My Bookshelf Quilt and Wedding Cake Replica

It’s been about a month since I finished these two lap quilts. I sent them off to my two friends and then forgot to post about them. 😛

For once, I took pictures of the progression for both quilts. Partly because the lady who hired me wanted to see. Partly because I needed to remember how I made these quilts in case I make another one!

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The finished quilt top. 🙂

I also did a pear applique along with the teacup and owl. E. drew a pear and leaf template for me. The teacup was part of a panel that I usually cut up to make mug rugs. I fussy-cut this one particular so you would only see the teacups. 🙂 I made my own owl template after staring at several owl appliques on Pinterest. I’m very pleased with how my owl turned out and I love the fabrics! They’re bright, modern, and beautiful. My friend is a lover of books, birds, Alice in Wonderland and tea. I thought these appliques were perfect for her. What do you think?

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The finished product!

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The finished quilt top. Yes, that’s gold ribbon outlining every single applique piece.

This quilt was a wedding gift for my other friend. It’s based off of a cake that she made for her wedding day. I tried my best to replicate it and I think I came pretty close!

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Left: My cake. Right: the real cake

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Quilting this one took a lot longer than the bookshelf. I followed the chevron pattern on the cake, the appliqued pieces and even all of the ribbons on the bottom layers. In order to stick with all of the straight lines and clean cuts, I stitched geometrics on the borders and cross-hatched the gray background for more quilting. I love how the background turned out! It was just enough quilting so you could see texture but subtle enough that it made the cake stand out.

So that’s what I was working on the past three months. If any of you want to hire me let me know.

Cheers.

Oklahoma City Winter Quilt Show 2016

Oklahoma City’s Winter Quilt Show was wonderful. Mom and I have gone every year for the past three years and it is always so much fun! This time, Mrs. Nancy, Mrs. Terri, Mrs. Rose and Big Ruth joined us. We talked the whole way there. Mrs. Rose drove since she drives like an airplane. 🙂

We had dinner at Old Chicago and reached the hotel in record time. Mrs. Nancy brought Uno cards, so we played several rounds in the hotel lobby. It was very fun. And intense. And Big Ruth and I kept drawing lots of cards. Actually, we all did, except Mrs. Rose. Her pile was always fairly small and she kept making Big Ruth and me draw more cards.

The quilt show itself was so great. It’s small enough that you can walk through the entire show in one day, but large enough that there are lots of vendors and really beautiful quilts on display. My quilt was hanging with all of the others 🙂 It was such an honor to participate with the adults this year! Not every entry is accepted into the quilt show.

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To Everything There Is A Season

Mrs. Terri and Mrs. Rose entered quilts that were displayed as well! It was really fun to have my friends enter with me this year.

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We admired all of the beautiful quilts that were displayed. I was very inspired. Then, we shopped, ate lunch, did show-and-tell, then shopped some more. 🙂 I never have anything to show by lunch time since I spend those three hours admiring quilts and looking at all the vendors. I visited the same three booths like four times before I made a purchase 😛 Mrs. Rose, on the other hand, already found and purchased cute kits, fabric and patterns. She knows how to shop, let me tell you.

One of my favorite booths were there this year. They sell continuous line quilting stencils, really great chalk pencils, and chalk pounce pads that make quilting so much easier for me. I actually used the leaf stencil I bought last year on my quilt that was on display. When I told them so, they were so surprised at my age and skill level that I was dragged over to my quilt to have my picture taken with the stencil I used! That was really exciting. I don’t really think of myself as that great of a quilter, especially with so many other quilts on display that are clearly a thousand times better than mine. It was truly an honor just to have mine accepted and displayed in this year’s quilt show, and on top of that have these people from Full Line Stencil go and take my picture.

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Some of my new projects from the quilt show 🙂

As always, I find some neat things while walking around the quilt show. This year, I bought tea cup fat quarters, a layer cake and matching animal panel for E’s quilt, a jelly roll for part of A’s quilt, a tote bag kit (so psyched about this!), more fabric, my very own Sip ‘N Snip and a chicken appliqué with a tea towel. I had my eye on the Scripture panels that were filled with Psalms. Mom beat me to it and bought two! I’m really excited to be working with those. At this point, I have more ideas than time. I am so inspired after staring at so many quilts. Hopefully I will finish all of these projects before the year is up. 😀

This year was by far the best year at the quilt show. We found such cute projects to do, we saw not just one, but THREE quilts of ours on display, and the very best part was spending this weekend with four lovely ladies who inspire me to make beautiful things and encourage me in all of my projects. There’s no one else I’d rather spend a weekend in Oklahoma City with than these wonderful ladies.

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Our little party ❤