Saturday, January 30, 2010

Quilt #3

Top=cropped quilt
L: back M: bear's paw block R: bear block

This one's not finished yet. But, I wanted to post the top anyway. I actually bought the pattern a while back to make Terry a quilt in homage to his love of bears. He has several hundred bears in our house (don't worry, they aren't real! Ha!). He loves them. He has used bears as his focus in many of his oil paintings.

For some reason, after I made the top, I put it away and kind of forgot about it. I would come across it every now and then. So, when I was looking for quilts to take pictures of for this quilt week, it once again appeared. I really like it. I think having it out of sight for a while has a way of making me see it with new eyes.

I decided that I'm not going to make it into a hanging wall quilt. I want to prep it to frame it. Any ideas how to do that? I don't want it to buckle. I'm thinking I'll use an extra thin natural batting and then do some serious hand quilting. Then have it framed professionally. I don't know. I'm still thinking. Help me out with your thoughts. Pretty please!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Dear Son-in-Law... is your birthday. (I'm sure you know that right?) Did you know how much we love you? Here are just a few reasons why:

We love you Tyler.
Thanks for taking such good care of our girl.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

My All Time Favorite Quilt

When I finished sewing this quilt, I realized that I could legally and lawfully call myself a "quilter". I LOVE THIS QUILT! I bought the pattern at Mormon Handicraft and held onto it for a while before I dared try it. It is all paper piecing except for the border, binding, and a few in-between block sashing. It was difficult. I even cried at some points as I taught myself to paper piece. I can't even tell you how many times I used my seam ripper. The sun was tricky. The color choosing made me question my ability to match fabrics. I almost quit twice.

But, through it all, I kept reminding myself that once I had sewn all the blocks together, I got to hand-quilt it. As I've mentioned before, that's my favorite part of quilting and this quilt did not disappoint. In addition to the simple joy of hand-quilting, I got to use a "new" hoop. I actually already owned one that was quite pricey. However, I found gold at Deseret Industries! The week before I finished the blocks, I was browsing at the famous DI when I ran across the exact same brand of quilting hoop only larger (which I needed) and oval shaped. Wow! I paid $2.00 for it! Don't you love those kinds of finds?

So, here it is.

This block, alone, had 92 pieces in it! Really!

The Plaque on the back.

A little blurry. I love this block.

I looked everywhere for blue raindrop buttons.
Couldn't find any.
So, I made them myself.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Quilt #2

(After looking back at my post from yesterday, I realized why I want this so much. But, right now I only have this (thanks Erika) so you will just have to imagine how much better these quilts look in person...hahahahahha!)

When I decided that I wanted to share my quilts with you (while at the same time creating a record for me to refer to) I struggled with whether or not to post them chronologically or randomly. The decision to post them randomly was totally based on my age.

I simply don't remember which ones came when. So, in order to maintain my integrity, I'm just going to post about them depending on how I feel that day. K?

I love this quilt. It hangs in my "home teaching room" AKA the front room. I have huge vaulted ceilings and this just seemed to scream the need to hang there. On one of my many trips to Ontario, California, I was privileged to attend the US Quilter's Show. I went with my dear friends Mary Lynn, Jill, and Kathy. We pretty much drooled the entire show. I stopped at one booth where I saw this quilt all quilted up. It is a pattern from The Buggy Barn. The name of the quilt is "Crazy About Hearts and Stars" (really?). I named it "With All My Heart". (really)

I picked out the colors when I got back to Utah and got to work. I had made a couple of quilts using the paper piecing technique...which I LOVE! (More about that on another day.) This hearts and stars quilt was more paper piecing BUT also taught me a new technique I hadn't even heard of called "Stacking". It was just a way to stack and cut the fabric so that each block was different. Very cool. This was the first quilt that I paid someone else to machine quilt. It felt like cheating. But, it turned out lovely. Maybe I'll get crackin' on another with different colors. What color would YOU like to see it sewn in?
The finished quilt is 50"x 80"

A close up.

A look at the machine quilting done at the Cotton Shop in Provo.

I folded this over to show the back.
I also made this little signature

Monday, January 25, 2010


So, Erika over at Oops! I Craft My Pants has told me that I need to start sharing some of the quilts I have made. I didn't really think of it as a big deal. It's something I love to do but never thought I knew what I was doing. Then, I went around last night and took pictures of all the quilts I've made. Wow! I've made more than I thought. So...I'm going to share one a day (pausing for any family birthdays that crop up) until they are all posted. I hope you enjoy them.

My Very First Quilt:
About eight years ago I got a bee in my bonnet and decided I wanted to learn to quilt. Growing up, there seemed to be a quilt "on" everywhere I went. My grandma Leavitt, my aunts, my friend's moms, and my mother were excellent quilters. My oldest sister, Rhonda, was president of the quilter's guild in her home town. I'd always been interested but it was when I watched my neighbor, Angela create such beautiful pieces, I knew I wanted to do that too. I asked her where she learned and she looked at me like I had another hole in my head and said "I taught myself, duh!" I never thought of that. So, I set out to teach myself.

For about two years previous, I had been saving my spare change in a ceramic pot. I had no idea how much was in there but I knew it wa
s substantial. I decided (before I counted it) that whatever was in it I would use to fund my first quilt. There was $68.55. I went to a little shop in SLC and went to town. Two hours later, I had purchased the fabric, the rotary cutter and mat, thread, rulers, hoop, and probably some other stuff too but I can't remember. I had already picked out my pattern which I found in a quilter's magazine. But the best purchase I made was this book:
It is a book I reference almost every time I quilt. I highly recommend it.

So...I got busy. From the first moment I rolled that rotary cutter over the fabric, I was hooked. I loved it. The designing, the color choice, the cutting, the sewing, everything. I finished the top and was happy with it. I chose the log cabin pattern. It's still one of my favorites.

Here's the front, along with a close up:
It looks kind of crooked but, it really isn't. It's how it's hanging.
As much fun as I had with the machine quilting...I was beside myself when I discovered the hand quilting part. I.LOVE.THAT.PART. Any part that is done by hand is my joy. (even the binding!) I got all creative about it too. I wanted to make the quilt personalized. So, I stitched each of our names around the boarder. Hopefully you can see them in the following pictures. Now, I'm aware that I'm not a pro. My stitches aren't as short as a real professional. But, each stitch was a joy to me. Hand quilting is something you have to experience yourself to understand.

Let me know what your think! I'd love to see your quilts too.

Can you see Erika's name?

Here's Melissa's.'s Terry's side.
So, where's my side?
I had to cover it up with the piece of fabric that
I added to the back to hang the quilt.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Why me?

I very rarely respond to a tag...usually because I forget...but since my darling friend Maria at Rainy Day Farm was the one doing the tagging, I guess I'll make an effort.

It goes like this: I have to answer 5 questions with 5 answers and then tag 5 people. So, since I did need to as well. K? Let's get started:

1. Where were you five years ago?
a. Teaching fifth grade
b. We had just moved back to Provo from Lehi.
c. Trying to get Melissa and Erika through high school.
d. Deciding whether to go blonde or brunette
e. Quilting

2. What is on your to-do list today?
a. Track my Weight Watchers points on line.
b. Make it through a Friday teaching my First graders.
c. Kiss my boyfriend.
d. Hang out online with my many and dear friends from the Weight Watchers GDT and Facebook.
e. Start my Term 2 Grade reports to send home with the students on Monday.

3. What five snacks do you enjoy?
a. Baby carrots (sorry Frugal Friday Maria) with balsamic vinegar and lots of salt.
b. 23 pretzels=2 points
c. A glass of Almond Milk....holy crap it's good.
d. An apple (really)
e. Fiber One 90 calorie bar...but only ONE or it's BIG TROUBLE!

4. What five places have you lived?
a. Cardston, Alberta Canada
b. Colombo, Sri Lanka
c. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
d. Singapore, Singapore
e. Provo, Utah

5. What five things would you do if you were a billionaire?
a. Pay off our house.
b. Buy all six kids a house.
c. Travel back to Sri Lanka.
d. Fly to NYC every month to stay at my penthouse and visit Eli and Audrie.
e. Fly to Colorado every month to stay at my cabin and visit Milo, Isabel, and Keeler.

6. People I'm tagging:
a. Erika at Oops! I Craft My Pants (the REAL one at .net)
c. Melissa at Mel Rae.
d. Erin at Mostly Andersons.
e. Becky at My My Reason to Smile.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Ode to My Birthday Niece Alissa

(look how pretty she is)

(I've always loved this picture. I think my mom made the cake for Brandy
but I've always loved this picture of Alissa)

(See how reverently she is bowing her head for dress)

(See that lovely maroon Gunne Sax dress on Alissa?
THAT'S MY DRESS that I wore as a bridesmaid
in Dana Durfey's wedding! Notice the little neckline insert my
mama sewed so that there was NO cleavage! Ha!)
( A few years ago at my brother Bruce's wedding. That's
my sister Rhonda, Alissa, and moi.)

HaPpY BiRtHdAy AlIsSa!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Two Fer Tuesday!

Today is the birthday of two of my favorite people in the entire world.


Below is my oldest grandchild. His name is Royan Anderson. He's the son of Terry's oldest son, Josh. Ever since Royan was born I have felt his amazing little spirit. He is such a great kid. I can't believe he is 12 years old. He was born just four months after Terry and I were married. How lucky was I do virtually become an automatic grandma?

Royan is smart, good-looking (just like his gramps), funny, kind, sweet, and patient. I really do love him. I just wish we could see him more often.
Royan and his dad Josh.
Who's stronger?

This is one of my favorite pictures.
Here is Royan with all of his cousins (and all of my grandchildren)
Clockwise beginning with Royan holding... Keeler, Isabel, Olivia,
Lyla, Audrie, Eli, and Milo.

This is my sister-in-law Sarah. I could just as easily call her my sister and/or friend. I love her. I remember the very day that Brian brought her home from Oklahoma. I have loved her ever since. She is a very spiritual being. She is smart, hysterically funny, beautiful, kind, generous, and many, many more qualities which we all wish we had. She taught me how to swear. I am indebt to her for that. I'd say something about her cooking skills but...that is better left unsaid!

She may not know this but, ever since I was that 12 year old girl setting eyes on Sarah for the first time, I have been watching her. She has been my idol (in a good way not the heathenistic Egyptian sort of way!). I have listened to everything she has said about mothering, about gaining and retaining a testimony, about getting along with people, and about life in general. In particular about raising teenagers and young adults. Let's just say, her example has helped me more than I could ever explain here.

Sarah, I love you. Brian, you better be taking good care of my sister-in-law/sister/friend or I'll sic Edwin's bull on you.
Here she is...Miss Sarah...mother of four boys and one lovely daughter.
She is also the grandmother of 14 (?) or is it 13 (?).
Isn't she lovely?
(cue Stevie Wonder music.)

Saturday, January 16, 2010


It's birthday time for handsome Jim,
My sister was smart and married him.
He's been around since I was three
He loves everyone, especially ME! (ha)


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Erika part 2

When I read Melissa's blog this morning, I couldn't stop laughing. What dorks!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Today my Erika is 21! I have dedicated several "mushy" birthday blogs about her. If you want to read them there is this one and this one. Every word is true.

But, in an effort to be more original, I am compiling a list of 10 things you might not know about Erika that make me absolutely crazy about her.
1. Erika has a wicked funny sense of humor.
2. Erika hums a little when she's drinking.
3. Erika can clean a disaster of a bedroom faster than anyone else I know.
4. She has never had to have glasses. (braces, yes)
5. Erika is an awesomecrafter. Just check out her website: The name of her site only proves that #1 is true!
Erika in her dance costume...four years old.

Erika and Melissa
My beauties!

6. She is tender hearted. She will tear up at most things that are unjustified OR extra special.
7. Erika can SHOP! I've never seen anyone who can find a bargain like she can.
8. She has a beautiful singing voice. Ever since she was a small child, she could sing just about anything. It always makes me happy to listen to her singing.
9. I love that she adores kids. She is the happiest when she is working with children. She will make a wonderful mother and I just can't wait to see her as one.
10. Erika forgives. She is an example to me of forgiving and forgetting. She has had opportunities in her life where 'not' forgiving would have been understood, yet, she still does. She gives people second chances. I admire that about her.

11...(one more) She loves her family and would be loyal to the death. I've seen her stick up for us so many times. She isn't afraid to tell us when we aren't ship shape.

Sooooo.....I guess this did turn a little "mushy". I can't help it sometimes. Especially when I talk about Erika.

Happy Birthday my daughter/friend. I love you.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Family Christmas Party #2

For the past 12 Christmases, we have had a family Christmas party with all of Terry's kids and all (2) of my kids (just so you know, I consider them all my children but sometimes it just makes the explanation of who's who easier). Where was I? Oh, right, they all come over and we make our own little mini pizzas. I look forward to these pizzas all year.

This year, we had it all planned and then that stupid snow storm hit and we were ONE family short. Spencer and Erin (which also means Milo, Isabel, and Keeler) had to delay the drive since the freeway was shut down. Josh and Royan didn't make it either.

So...the rest of us pizza partied anyway. Melissa brought the twins (Olivia and Lyla), Erika brought Tyler and Oscar. Abbie and Forrest brought Eli and Audrie all the way from downtown New York City (Manhattan). Mel Rae brought me. Terry brought Ali, Mac, and Leo.

Here are a load of pictures from that evening (there are many, many):

Tyler and Erika makin' crust

Lyla waiting and waiting

Olivia and Aunt Erika
My beauties: Erika and Melissa

The sous chefs: Lyla and Olivia helping
Grami Tami make the dough

And one more little sous chef...Audrie
Me with Olivia

Eli with his prized motorcycle from Grandpa Terry

Grandpa Terry with Audrie and Eli

The twins cleaning up...thank you my dears.

Eli with his buddy

Terry with his two Melissas

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