A Sleeve for Samantha

Sounds like the title of a book, doesn’t it? “A Sleeve for Samantha.” Here’s a very tiny peek at a very tiny sleeve for a very tiny little girl’s christening gown. Made for Sammy… by Grammy. You might see tiny blue dots along the lace. Those will disappear with cold water when I’m finished. (Yes, I tested it!)

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The Improvisational Quilts of Susana Allen Hunter

Yesterday Dean and I had a wonderful day roaming around the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan. It’s been quite awhile since I’ve been there, and much has been done to the museum during my absence. Our visit was planned so that we could attend the quilt show featuring the quilts of Susana Allen Hunter. The link takes you to the Henry Ford web page with her information.

Susana was an African American woman who quilted out of necessity for her family. The exhibit is only there through April 27th, so if you’d like to attend, you best hurry! Dating from the 1930s to the 1970s, her quilts provide daily-life context to the experience of African Americans living in the Jim Crow South. Don’t expect to see fancy applique and tiny, wonderous quilting motifs. However, the exhibit is an excellent display of real-life America for many people. Taking what they had, using worn clothes and blankets, women often crafted quilts to warm their families. If you visit, take take the time to read the displays. The information and quotes from Susana’s family are precious. What a great lady she was!

Here are just a few of the photos from the show:

That’s me in the middle admiring the back of her quilt. Looking at the display of her sewing materials (see above) was a humbling experience. Modern-day quilters tend to search for the newest sewing gadgets to make our work better. It’s amazing what needle, thread, and one simple pair of scissors will do! Thank you for your work, Susana.

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Rug Surfing

You’ve seen a lot of photos of cats on quilts… at least you have if you read quilt blogs frequently. But have you seen any cats RUG SURFING? Stormie has quite a talent, and she practices daily. If I had a movie camera, I’d post a video on my blog. These photos will have to suffice.

First, let me take you through the scenario.

  1. First, you take a rug, one that has been placed beautifully on a nice tile floor in the front hallway. You must have plenty of room to do “the run.”
  2. Second, you make absolutely sure the rug is nicely in place, positioned squarely in the hall. This is best done right after mommy or daddy have repositioned the rug after an earlier episode.
  3. Third, you start from the opposite corner of the house, and run full tilt boogie towards the front hall.
  4. Fourth, you land on the rug with a plop and ride it as it scoots up the door. If someone happens to catch you in the act, scowl at them. Look very angry!
Voila – Rug Surfing!

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Little blocks I forgot to post

How could I forget to share these little blocks with you?

From top left:

  • B-13: Four Corner Press
  • C-13 Lakota Sioux
  • L-8 Box Kite

Being spring, I felt the urge to freshen up my blog’s image a little bit. I needed something less wintery… Does this do the trick? Please let me know what you think in the comments below.


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My college classes are done, and all I have left to do is grade the final exams. No more Saturday morning or Wednesday night classes! I’ll miss my students, but this has been a long semester, and at least 4 nights each week I’ve had schoolwork to do. With working full-time during the day, this has been a long 3.5 months!

I’ve had a little time in the last week to sew some. Sammy and Jake were here Sunday… but the sewing machine and the fingers were working when they weren’t here. Monday, Dean and I were going to go to Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan but we ended up having to go to the hospital to be with his mother who had some tests done. Tests came back negative, but we still don’t know what is causing her problems. We may go to the museum this Sunday… depends on how Dean feels (spring allergies).

I love doing applique. This was a fun block to do, and I did most of it while waiting at the hospital. It’s called D8 – Dee Dee’s Delight. I don’t know who Dee Dee is, but I was delighted sewing this! Click on the photo to see a larger version. I love the pink fabric!
Speaking of fabric, I bought a few little pieces on eBay today and won! Some brown charms and some red and white jelly rolls! Very exciting! There is alot of of fabric for sale on eBay. Check it out!

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A Longer Weekend…

means more time to cuddle with Samantha!

Sammy and Jake were here Sunday for the afternoon while their mommy and daddy were house hunting. Sammy spent a lot of time either sleeping or eating, but the rest of the time she was being held by me. Ahhhh, nothing like a baby to snuggle with! Jake and his “Bumpa” did some yard work, and Jake enjoyed riding his own John Deere peddle tractor and John Deere bike on the sidewalk. Just shy of 4 years old, he loves riding anything with wheels. Bumpa also gave Jake a ride on the big tractor up and down the street which always goes over well!

I snuck outside Sunday morning and took some early spring photos of the yard and house. Next to my pond some little yellow crocus peek out of the grass. The goldfish are doing their little “happy dance” in the pond, but I think I will get them a few new roommates. I only count 5 fish… wonder what happened to the others?
Here’s a photo of the back of our house from the back fence. Pretty naked now, but in less than one month, it will be hard to see the house through the trees. Beyond the back fence, our yard drops off to the flats down by the creek. The FlatsThat’s where the deer hang out. We have left that natural… I might sneak down this year and plant some daylilies by the water. I have lots of lilies that need dividing, and it might be nice to have a splash of color down there. Hmmm.
While I was waiting for Jake and Sammy to arrive, I spent some time working on Sammy’s christening gown. It’s coming along nicely, now that I have most of the yellow spots out. I cut it out on Saturday and have the yoke on the front all tucked and embroidered. The fabric is not the easiest thing to work with, though! Very slippery! I did a little piecing and embroidery work for my Dear Sammy Jane quilt. I’m now at 53 blocks! Yippie!
I’ll share the quilting another time. I’m off to hang a mirror!

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Keeping Track of a Multitude of Blogs

Are you hooked on quilt blogs? I know I am! I have a long list of blogs I read, and reading quilt blogs is how I start my day! A strong cup of coffee, a snuggly bathrobe and my blogs and I start to wake up. I have so many blogs I read on a regular basis, I needed a way to keep them organized. I needed a way to know when someone posted something new. I got a blog reader. It was cheap. Free, actually, and I love it!

I use Google Reader. Again, it is F R E E . You register, you start adding the addresses of blogs you read, you learn how to search for more quilt blogs right on Google Reader, and you’re on your way! Bloglines is another blog reader, but I haven’t tried it. You might want to give it a go.

While I really like using a blog reader, there is one part that I’m not especially thrilled about. Bloggers use different sites and programs to publish their blog. You are reading my blog, which uses Blogger.com . Some other people use Typepad or WordPress. There are many others. When I use my Google Reader, I can see portions of blogs and scroll through each one. But the settings on some individuals blogs are such that the pictures don’t show up in the Reader.

Here is a view of what I see when someone has their blog set so that blog readers can see their beautiful photos. Thank you, http://theehandworks.typepad.com/ ! (The beautiful colors you see to your left.)
Sadly, some people have their settings such that the beautiful pictures and colors don’t show in a blog reader. So sad. If that happens, you can still get to their blog by clicking on a link, but it kinda defeats the purpose of having a blog reader! If the writing isn’t interesting, I don’t click through. If it IS interesting, I’ll go for it.

How many readers are YOU turning away? Do you know what your blog looks like in a BLOG READER? Maybe you should give it a try and see for yourself. Sure makes reading blogs more organized!

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Only One Away From 50

No silly, not years. Already crossed that line, thank you very much. One more block to go before having 50 of my Dear Jane blocks completed! Yippie!

F 13 – Tour de France B 11 – Melissa’s Cross

B 5 – Hot Cross Buns

B 7 – World Series

Think the Tigers will make it to the World Series this year? Fingers crossed…

Tonight is my final teaching class for my Wednesday night group, then next week the final. So another long day today.

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