Waiting for the Thaw

It was supposed to warm up yesterday. Technically, it did...a little. When we got up yesterday morning, we were at 27°F. At bedtime, it was all of 33°F. So...above freezing, but just barely. Just before sitting down to write this post, I took this picture:

Baby, it's cold outside. Snow has been falling since before daybreak. Mike is just getting ready to leave for work. I fully expect him to return before I'm even finished writing this post.

Yesterday I thought I might get outside to take some pictures. I even took time to charge the battery on my DSLR camera so that I could use my macro lens. Freezing rain continued falling throughout the day. The wind chime was coated in ice, and even though the wind was knocking the tubes together, the sound was muffled nearly to silence.

Not really being in the mood to have my body encased in ice, my only foray into the great outdoors was across the deck where there was a layer of ice over the snow. As I planted my feet to avoid falling, I left a trail of broken ice footprints.

This was the object of my photography desire...not a great picture, but it's better than nothing.

You can see there is about an inch of ice on the roof of the catio. To avoid any more roof collapses, we've propped up the offending panel with the head of a push broom. Mike has figured out that he can install cleats on each side of the rafters to prevent this from happening again in the future. That will be a project for warmer weather, however.

After seeing this, I decided to go out on the catio to see a kitty's eye view. You can see that they've been outside, albeit briefly.

Here's how it looks to their eyes.

As you might guess, I had plenty of time to finish up Wind in the Whiskers yesterday. It sure feels fine. While I was working on this, I realized I'd reserved my two most pesky projects for the month of January, and I've defeated both.

This one gave me a little trouble in the form of applique pieces that weren't completely fused down. The fabric is a very densely woven batik, and the fusible doesn't adhere well sometimes. I've used this 606 product in the past when a fusible gave me trouble. It's always been before it was fused to the quilt however, and so I couldn't really spray it onto the quilt top.

Instead, I sprayed it onto a thick piece of paper. It's the backing I've pulled off the printable fabric from Ernestine, the bag lady. So I sprayed a virtual puddle of 606 onto the paper and then used an old pencil point to apply it to the applique, then ironed it down again. That worked great, but it is kind of messy. A bamboo skewer would make a better applicator, but I was in grab-the-closest-pointed-object mode. 

Also, you have to work pretty fast because the 606 drys fairly quickly.

When I was finished with that, I made this heart block for the Block Lotto. Kind of fun. The red portions are from "made fabric". I just sewed together a bunch of scraps until I had pieces large enough, then trimmed them to size. My friend Marei does a lot of "made fabrics" and she's the only one I've ever heard use that term. Apparently, I'm again the last to know this well-known quilting term.

Then I was ready to do the small quilt for Kathleen Tracy's January small quilt challenge. I blogged about this last week. Yesterday I went from cutting to a completed little top in a single afternoon. I'm not as happy with my fabric choices as I thought I would be, but oh well. The top is done, and this is just a fun way to use up scraps.

I'll use a solid blue for the binding, and in the image below, I've laid the strips around so you can see how it will look.

Here's the fabric I'll use for the back.

And so I'm hoping to get this one quilted and finished up today. Aside from that, I'm staying inside and trying to stay warm.

19 comments from clever and witty friends:

Marei said...

You know how much I love "made fabric"! I use all my smallest scraps to create hunks/chunks of fabric. So glad you've conquered Wind in the Whiskers!

Vroomans' Quilts said...

It is bitter in so many places right now. I made a quick dash of errands in town this morning and still thawing out! Of course the furkids are napping upstairs on the guest bed (must be cold for that to happen). I like to play with scrappy, but not a fan of made fabric. I think you mini is cute and very Valantiny.

Kristin in Alaska said...

It's -30F here, so cold I really don't want to go to work!
Every day I'm amazed at how quickly you work! Everything looks beautiful!

gpc said...

We are expected a heat wave today, a predicted high of 20, but it somehow looks colder in your photos than I feel here. Your projects are always a boost to my lagging spirit -- maybe I will make something valentinesy.

Quilting Babcia said...

It looks totally treacherous out there, amazing that you didn't lose power. Not as cold here today, at least we're above zero, and the wind has calmed down just a bit. The Valentine hearts look like fun, might have to try a few of them.

Lyndsey said...

We've just got the cold rain but the temperature is above freezing thank goodness. Stay warm and safe. Your whiskers in the wind is beautiful and I love the mini. Made fabric is fun but I haven't used it much.

beaquilter said...

great pics and fun quilt! we got about 1" of snow and ice and NC shut down, no school today nor tomorrow! then friday it will be 70!!

WoolenSails said...

Wonderful photos and love ice when the sun hits it, but no sun here today.


claudia said...

I'm with Kristin...how do you get so much done? I only manages to finish a wonky log cabin block (it was half done) and then made a quilt as you go strip block. And I used big strips!
Oh my goodness that catio looks chilly! Well your whole property looks chilly. When I went out this morning, there is no snow, it rained yesterday for most of the morning, then it got below freezing at some point, so everything was crunchy! I rushed through my outside chores so I could get back into my nice warm house. I have to go into town later. I'm hoping it thaws a little before I have to go, or else getting up my driveway may be a slight challenge.

Dasha said...

Amazing that your munchkins go out at all when there's snow on the ground. Tubby is a fair weather cat and stands in the doorway twitching her whiskers if it is too hot, too cold or raining.

Teresa in Music City said...

Looks like you made the most of your enforced time inside :*) Congrats on finishing up Whiskers!!!!! Drumrolls please!!!!! We are not much warmer here - I think today was 36 - but thankfully no white stuff in any form.

wheelinsticks said...

Nothing like a little freezing trickle of ice. The pictures are beautiful.

crazy quilter said...

Brrr it looks very cold there! The picture is superb and definitely gave me the chills! I sure love the wind in the Wiskers quilt.. Yours has inspired me to think about adding this to my long list of to do quilts list. I adore your mini and think the blue binding is perfect. Try to stay warm and pet the kitties for me. Hope you warm up some there on the top of the hill.

Brown Family said...

WHen the snow freezes on top, it is too cold to be out! I like that term and idea of 'made fabric'

SJSM said...

You made the national news once more this winter due to your icy weather! Today had a few showers and Stella was happy to break out of e house for several hours between the cloudbursts.

I can't believe Wind inthe Whiskers is now a flimsy! It is as lovely as you first imagined. What an epic tale. Congrats on getting you two most stubborn projects moving forward.

Dana Gaffney said...

I've made my own fabric, it's a great way to use up weird scraps and adds so much to the quilt.

quiltzyx said...

Brrrrrr!!! I think I missed something - a roof cave in? Oh my! It's a crisp 52' here this morning and a 64% chance of rain. The ice & snow does make beautiful photos. Thanks for braving the ice to get those pics.
I've done quite a bit of made fabric for projects. It's fun. but can get tedious if you're in the wrong mood.
Congrats on another fine & fabulous feline finish!!

Paula said...

Beautiful pictures of the ice covered bird feeder and tree branches. I live in Vancouver WA so understand what you have been dealing with.

Kate said...

Wind in the Whiskers is looking great. All you have left is the clothesline? That's a lot of ice. We are in the middle of an ice storm this weekend, but we aren't supposed to get much more than a 0.25" of the stuff. Still it makes for a cold and dreary day. Hopefully you've had a bit of a warm up since Monday.