12/4/14

Strategizing

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There's only one way to get through my monthly list of goals: Strategy. Plan your work. Work your plan. Have an attack strategy, and then ...


You can see I'm learning something from my little cat, Smitty.

Anyway...as I was sitting doing my embroidery yesterday, I was thinking about the things on my list and realized that nothing would get done if I didn't have the raw materials I needed to do the job.

For example, I'm chomping at the bit to get at the quilting on the "Oh Christmas Tree" wall hanging,


but I realized I didn't have all of the threads I wanted to use. I have those on order. As soon as they arrive (sometime next week, I hope), I can get started on that. I'm pretty sure how I want to do most of the quilting, and so it should go pretty quickly once I get started on it.

I have a plan about how I'm going to set the Hello Moon blocks,


but I wasn't sure if I had the fabrics I need. As it turns out, I don't. I needed to order some yellow fabric to use in my sashings. (Check.) When that comes I'll be able to get started on this.

Also, I'm coming to the end of the latest Vintage Tin block, and so I'm going to need to trace out the next of the Quilting Snowladies.


Without looking in the box, I'm pretty sure this is the next one I'll be doing. 

I already know I have all the floss I need for the rest of these blocks, but that got me thinking about the one I'll be starting when I've finished stitching this block. When that one is done, I'll have an opening on my trio of embroidery projects, so I'll be starting a new one. The next one I'm starting is the Gingerbread Square from Crabapple Hill. Here's what the whole quilt will look like:


Isn't that precious? The materials needed include a 64-crayon box of Crayola crayons. I don't know about you, but I haven't done any coloring in years. The whole prospect of using crayons on fabric is sort of intriguing. Also, I checked my stash for fabrics and discovered that I have all the fabrics I need without having to purchase anything. Yay! 

But what I was really interested in knowing was what floss colors I'm going to need. The floss colors were listed by Cosmos colors, and I'm kind of a DMC gal myself. As I started trying to make the translation, I started getting lazy and overwhelmed by the whole thing. Finally, I checked the website to see if there was a kit, and there was! And it was on sale! Hooray! So I just cut out the tedium of trying to make that translation, and bought the floss kit. Now I'm ready to go on my next next project. (Did you get that? The next one after the next one?) Planning ahead...working the plan and then attack! 

The first block I'm going to do is this one, and now I'm excited for that floss to arrive so I can get started. Right after I do the next of the Quilting Snowladies, of course.


As for my current projects, this morning I selected fabrics for the last two blocks of the Dream Machines rainbow scrap quilt. 


November's color was baby blue. For December, I needed to choose my own color. Originally, I thought I'd choose lavender, but then I couldn't find the right fabrics for that. I ended up going with a sort of rose color. Each machine requires three fabrics...one for the sewing machine, one for the handwheel, and one for the thread. So here's what I came up with for my last two blocks. 


That's what I'll be working on today. If I get those finished, I'll make the block for this month's Block Lotto, which just happens to be this "Big O". 



Last month's block was an "Easy X", and so I guess we're doing X's and O's for the last two months of the year. That'll probably keep me busy for most of the day, but I want to get back to quilting the Gardener's Journal quilt as well. 

Yesterday was a kitchen day. I made two days worth of dinners and I boiled my turkey carcass for stock. That yielded about 3-1/2 quarts of stock...not a bad amount. That'll be good for soup next week. 

Also, I tried the recipe for White Chocolate Peppermint Fudge. I'm actually a fan of the regular chocolate fudge, but I'm also a fan of the white chocolate peppermint mochas from Starbucks, and so this fudge looked delicious to me. So I gave it a try, and Oh. My. Gosh.


It was really yummy. It has crushed up peppermint candies in it. I had a box of those little miniature candy canes, and so I crushed those up. They're not quite as hard as the peppermint candies that are often handed out in restaurants. They were really nice. Mike and I each had a few pieces, and then I plated up the rest for him to take to work this morning. We really don't need to eat the entire plate all by ourselves. Having him take my Christmas baking to work makes it possible to do Christmas baking without gaining 50 pounds, and we can still have a few bites of everything. 

As I said...strategy. Plan your work. Eat your work. Wait...what? (See: What I've learned from Smitty, above.)

15 comments from clever and witty friends:

Christine M said...

You've certainly got plenty to keep you busy Barbara. I love the Gingerbread quilt. It is so pretty.

Sheila said...

You are a busy lady. Can't wait to see the gingerbread quilt come together. I played around with coloring fabric a while ago, but didn't make anything. It was kind of fun. Have a great day!

Vroomans' Quilts said...

A plan to attack - super ideology! Love the new gingerbread stitchery - and playing with crayons is fun.

Marei said...

My head is spinning trying to keep up with you and your "plan". Luckily it's not a necessity that I know what's going on....so "as you were". And doesn't that white peppermint fudge look fantastic? Too bad you sent it off with Mike...I LOVE peppermint. I mean, I LOVE peppermint. And I noticed you're using the table topper I made for you. Makes me smile. :)

quiltzyx said...

Sounds like a good plan to me! My guild's Opportunity Quilt a couple of years ago was colored with crayons, embroidered & appliqued & it was wonderful. All based on a book of Mother Goose stories, that we included with the quilt. I think you'll have lots of fun with the Gingerbread Squares.
Oh. My. Gosh. is right! That peppermint fudge looks mouth watering. Sheesh & me with no chocolate in the house right now...

Lee said...

Wow oh wow! but you are keeping busy with lots of plans...I'd need that white fudge just to give me enough energy to THINK about getting started on ONE of your goals! Gingerbread Square is enticingly intriguing, and oh so lovely. My daughter & I have this gingerbread thing going at Christmas ever since she was little and we made g'bread boys as our traditional baking.

crazy quilter said...

I think ordering the floss kit is a brilliant idea on your part! I too am a DMC girl so trying to figure out what color is what would be mind boggling! That white chocolate peppermint fudge sure looks tasty. You are ever the planner, I lack that ability, and usually finish my projects but never know what is next until time to start it. One of these days maybe I will try the plan ahead thing, sounds interesting. Have a great day!

Teresa in Music City said...

Such fun and so well organized - Smitty should hire himself out as a Life Coach - he'd make millions =^..^=

Kate said...

I love the Gingerbread Square blocks!

I had to laugh at Teresa's comment about hiring Smitty out as a Life Coach.

kc said...

Hmmm...could the fudge possibly be as good as toes & smelly socks?? Thanks for the recipe tho - I usually don't have much faith in Taste of Home recipes, they're either so very basic, they're really not good, or so very complicated with weird ingredients or full of CHEESE/MILK (which is a big no-no for me) that I just don't bother. However, if it gets YOUR stamp of approval, it must be tried. I usually make chocolate fudge, but mix in crushed peppermints (1 yr old candy canes leftover) and then sprinkle some more on top to make my peppermint fudge, but I like the look of the white chocolate better. Sooo, it's on the printer, and next time Driver fires it up, he'll get a nice surprise. Then maybe he'll stock up on the necessary ingredients.

Oh my, he just asked me where the doggie shampoo is. Could that mean he's gonna do the deed too??? I am a lucky girl!

The quilts look cute & ambitious, but, knowing you, you'll get 'em done & they'll be fabulous! Love the idea of just ordering the kit - I often struggle with putting the right colors together too.

Enjoy your weekend!

knitnkwilt said...

The gingerbread quilt will be darling--as will they all. Now that I am quilting I too never have the right color of thread. Used to be so easy, light gray for all piecing.

Dana Gaffney said...

I love that Gingerbread Square, it's adorable. What are you coloring on it? Can you wash or iron it after the coloring? I'm intrigued. When Cori was younger and the answer to "how was school" was always O.K., I bought us both a box of 64 crayons and we would color everyday and talk, it worked wonders and we still will sit and color together.

Junebug613 said...

That gingerbread quilt is cute! I can't wait to see what the coloring is all about! You are good at the planning ahead on your projects!

Alla Blanca said...

Thanks for your list--it always inspires me to at least make a mental list for the coming month.
I would like permission to use your "Oh Christmas Tree" picture on my blog; I promise to link back to you. I am thinking of franken-patterning that with a kit I saw over at Fabric Depot
http://www.fabricdepot.com/all-wrapped-up-pillow-cover-kit
I just get so excited about holiday sewing this time of year.
http://rainbowsbunniescupcakes.blogspot.com

Brown Family said...

Crayon quilts are fun! Coloring on fabric is easy, you just want to have an even, light stroke. Some suggest a circular motion. I color first and set the color with the iron and paper towels. Then embroidery. That means you have to trace onto the fabric rather than print on the sticky solvy.