Mar 23, 2012

Overflowing Basket of Blessings

(Basket #3 of Temecula Quilt Shop's sew along)

I'm back and want to extend a heart felt thank you for all the comments/email messages etc. while I took some time away from the blog. I hope I had the chance to personally let you all know what a day brightener they were, and especially hope that I didn't forget anyone. If I did, know that you and your offers of help and good wishes are very much appreciated. This has been a quiet week, thankfully, and I am looking forward to more quiet weeks without unforeseen stress added to the daily doses dished out. As most of you are aware of, my husband is fighting a fairly aggressive form of lung cancer, and while we face each day with as much of a smile as we can muster and with what his oncologist calls SPUNK (!) there are times when life will force me into the background. In the meantime, each day brings a new blessing and those are the things I reach out to grab. I intend to make my basket(s) runneth over so to speak.

With The Husband back in chemotherapy after last week's hospital stay, I have concentrated time weekly to hand quilt. I've been steadily hand quilting my Apple Brown Betty designed by Cheri Payne, and should be finished with that shortly. Why I felt it necessary to use a million and one pins in this small top is beyond me- surely it was totally unnecessary and I curse myself every time my thread gets caught up on a safety pin. Live and learn. Before the 80* March weather (what's with that!?) hit upstate NY, I was spending The Husband's nap times in the sewing room across the hall. It made me feel better and I enjoyed stitching away. It is truly my stress reliever and happy place. It's a big reason why I am getting things done in a way I've never been able to before. It's been a very long time since I've been home 7 days a week, and the "retired housewife" label is fitting well, thank you very much. Sewing, cooking, decluttering and cleaning the house, puttering in the garden, how can one complain about such simple things? This is almost how I envisioned retirement, just didn't count on the little quirk of fate.

Besides all the small projects I've been musing about over the last few posts (and no, I didn't forget- I will blog about that closet and the fabric storage units soon!)I pulled out my Folk Art Album kit to arrange the applique on the blocks, and have them ready to hand stitch. The applique is wool on a flannel background. I bought the kit from Lisa Bongean (Primitive Gatherings)in Paducha. That was either the 2007 or 2008 quilt show, not sure which. Either way, it was a long time ago, and I have 3 blocks finished. Since this year I am hell bent on getting my older and larger projects (in various stages of completion) finished up (in between the newly started ones, of course), this was my first pick. Sewing nights this week have concentrated on making the 105(at least I hope that is all) 1.5" HSTs needed to set the 12 main blocks. I am loving it, and am happy with my decision to do as much as I possibly can during the quiet times. What do you think of it? Sweet, no?

(Forgive the badly placed row- I just threw it on the design wall over another large project that should be next on the list of must finish!!)


Diane said...

the Folk Art blocks are very sweet!
Will keep you and your husband in my prayers.
Sewing is such a stress reliever and keeps your mind and hands busy-sometimes that's all you can do.

lynneUSA said...

Great to see your work, had a lesson on hand quilting last week and did some on my 12 days of Christmas mini quilt

Cheryl said...

So glad sewing is providing you with such joy! Keeping your in my thoughts and prayers.

Nancy in MT said...

I'm so glad to see you posting and commenting of course on my blog, to know you are finding your way.
Your Folk Art blocks are beautiful. Keeping you, your husband and your family in my thoughts.

Libby said...

Look at you go with those baskets! I can't even seem to commit to taking them on . . . . though I want to *lol*
Keeping you and your family in my thoughts every day!

Carol said...

Love your baskets Karen...glad you're finding some stress relief and peace with your stitching. Sending lots of good thoughts and prayers for you both. You take care.

Shawn said...

love those little baskets! love you!


McIrish Annie said...

glad to see you back and glad that things have settled into a rhythm of sorts. quilting is a true stress reliever. I can't think of a time when I wasn't in my happy place to be among fabric.

Noel said...

It'staken me a while to check your blog again, and I am soooo glad I did. As always, your fabulously pieced blocks (no matter what the pattern or fabrics) radiate serenity to me. The perfection of your piecing while enviable is so calming . . .thank you for giving me an oasis of calm at a time when I should be doing that for you. Thank you for writing, for keeping your sanity, and for being the woman you are . . . my friend. Bless you - Noel

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