More 'Maters

Today I'm getting back to canning tomatoes. I have enough for several more quarts of pasta sauce. It's been a day or two since I checked the greenhouse, and so I don't know how many more are turning colors. It's still iffy whether they will turn fast enough for me to get them all canned before we leave on our trip. Also, the plums are getting very close. I'm confident those will be ready by this weekend.

Yesterday I got started on my Let's Book It project.

I'm making this project

from Karen Linduska's book,

The book does a good job of explaining how to make this work. She suggests a medium-weight tear away or cut away stabilizer. I have lots of stabilizer left from my machine embroidery days. (I bagged machine embroidery...didn't enjoy it at all.) Mine is mostly heavy-weight, however, and so I'm using a heavy-weight tear away stabilizer on the back of my piece. (She says she doesn't tear the stabilizer away, and so I won't either.) Follow that with a piece of batting, and then your foundation fabric. She didn't suggest basting, but I used spray baste just the same.

Here's how far I got when I needed to stop yesterday.

I'm still going to add one more color of asterisks in the orange section at the bottom, and then I'll be ready to start on the flower. I'll finish off the blue squares with more stitching toward the end of the project.

The author points out that everyone's machine stitches will be different, and she gives a page with a key for the words she uses to describe them. My "asterisk" is a little different from hers, although I had one that was more similar. I just kind of liked that more heavily-stitched snowflake.

This is going pretty fast, so maybe I'll get it finished today. I have a few other things to do, in addition to canning more tomatoes.

A few of you asked how I make my quilt labels. There are lots of tutorials online about how to print on fabric with your ink-jet printer, and there are also lots of free printable labels available as well. Just do a search for "quilt labels" and you will be amazed at how much is out there. The internet is a marvelous thing.

This morning I did a little search of YouTube and came up with this video that I think is a pretty good one.

If you're on a hand-held device, and you can't see the video, click right here

For a long time I used Printed Treasures, but I grew frustrated with it for two reason: (1) It only comes in white, as far as I can tell. (2) It's nearly impossible to get the paper off the back, which caused me to give up on it. I think we are only blessed with so much tolerance for frustration in our lifetimes, and I've used up my quota. Remember, I'm a social worker...and a mom...and a wife...and a daughter...and a sister. It takes its toll. Besides...I have cats.

Yesterday was kind of a long day. I had an MRI of my neck...nothing to worry about, but my neck has been bothering me. I might actually have to follow several doctors' advice to me and use a mask and snorkel when I swim. (Oh, bother.) In my efforts to defeat them and their device, I'm getting an MRI just to confirm that they're wrong and I'm right...although I don't know how that matters since my neck will still be bothering me no matter who is right. Anyway...and to buy myself two days at home...I decided to do my grocery shopping yesterday too. 

So I arrived home late to find my July doll quilt in the mail. 

 Doll Quilters

Recall that July's theme was "On My Bucket List" and I received this quilt from my partner Jill in Australia.

Cute, huh? That's machine embroidery of the Eiffel Tower. Her quilting is so cute, and look at those cats with the pink ribbons! I love it! Thank you, Jill. What a nice surprise at the end of a long day.

So if I'm going to get to my sewing today, I'd better get a move on with those tomatoes. I'm also doing laundry and I need to water my annuals. Also, I'd better check in on the tomato vines and see who else might be turning red. I hope you have a lovely day planned for yourself.

11 comments from clever and witty friends:

quiltzyx said...

You made a good start on your "book it" quilt. Your asterisks look like marching rows of spiders to me ;^)

Isn't it always nice to come home to a surprise package in the mail! Fun DQ!

Hope you're having fun with the PWPs. Imprison those suckers!!

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I am very intriqued with your Book It project. And the doll quilt is so cute - love the cat fabric.

Sally T said...

Just thought I should point out a mathematical error: cats don't increase frustration they reduce it!

(other stuff) - !0*(# cats) = tolerance for frustration.

You're welcome!

Tommy Cat

Dana Gaffney said...

Well I forgot what I was going to say after reading quiltzyx's comment, went back to look and now I see marching spiders too.

Dasha said...

I had to go back to take a look at those spiders too! LOL.
Good luck with that neck of yours. Hope the Dr doesn't tell you to quit quilting like mine did! Not that I followed his advice mind you.

Cath said...

Your book it project is looking really cute!

Kate said...

You made a great start on the Spiky Flower mini, it looks like fun.

Love the doll quilt, the kitty cat fabric was just perfect!

Junebug613 said...

Wow, I wish I had a machine that did the fancy stitches. How pretty! I have been using Printed Treasures. I don't like it because it always seems so thick and stiff. I've never had problems with the paper coming off. I hope your neck issues resolve themselves. As a person with neck and back problems, I know how frustrating they can be, not to mention painful! The doll quilt you received is wonderful!

Jacque said...

Sure hope your neck improves...I just printed my first label recently, and I'm wondering if it will last through some laundering. What's your experience?

Heidi said...

Love your Paris surprise!

Finis makes a great snorkel for lap swimming that allows you to keep normal goggles.

Lyndsey said...

Your book it project is interesting and developing nicely. I like the use of the machine embroidery stitches. I used to use the stitches a lot when the children were small but currently they are used very infrequently - must find a project to use them on.

You quilt swap is very pretty and the cats are perfect. What a lovely surprise to come home to.

I'm sorry to hear your neck is causing you pain. I hope the MRI doesn't show anything serious.