Monday, December 26, 2011

Projects for kids...

I want to share a project that I did for all of the small children on my Christmas list, but first I need to share a quick story about Christmas Morning at the Perger House...

Our normal tradition of cooking breakfast for our kids while they anticipated coming down from their rooms to open gifts was set aside this year as my Father in Law asked us to come to his house earlier than normal because he wanted to cook breakfast for all of us.  So, instead everyone got up, got showered and dressed and we were going to open gifts before we headed to PawPaw's house.

Unfortunately, just as we were about to open gifts we realized we had not seen Mocha all morning.  We searched the house, and after a very thorough search figured she had escaped in the middle of the night, so our search went outdoors.  After two hours of searching and a lot of tears we decided to make some flyers to put on the doors of our neighbors hoping someone had taken her in.  Five doors down my son found her cowering under a bush, "trapped" by branches above her.

Needless to say there was great rejoicing in our home after finding our lost cat... But we had to leave without opening gifts and none of the kids even batted an eye.  It made me very proud.  We opened gifts when we got home and we had a grand time doing so.  I did a more detailed post on that subject on my other blog, and if you'd like to read it, you can do so HERE.

But this post was intended to be a post to share some Crayola Caddies, so here they are...

I cut all of them at once and went into full production mode.  I made 16 and have 7 left.  I am going to put them up on my Etsy Shop.  I fill them with Crayola Brand Crayons.  They are very simple to make and they are a lot of fun to make as well.

The Materials... All cut, pressed and ready to sew...

 In Process... One step at a time, over and over and over again...

All Sewn and ready to turned right side out.

All done and ready for Crayons... The large ones on the right are for Toddler Crayons.
I use the triangle crayons, as they won't roll off the table at a restaurant.

And here are half of them, the photo of the other half was blurry and horrible,
but it looked just like this with different colors!

Time to catch some Monday Night Football!!

As always, Thanks for Reading!!

Until Next Time,

Friday, December 23, 2011

Quilting... Sewing... Thursday

For those of you who have been around a while, forgive me while I share a little history with those who are new to my blog.  For a long time, I quilted EVERY Thursday night because on Thursday nights I had the house to myself for 3 hours while my wife and kids were at Choir.  Over the summer, however, I agreed to be the Treasurer for the Children's Choir that my children sing in and my wife works for and that required me to be at choir every Thursday too... and sewing Thursdays became a thing of the past... But last night I sewed on Thursday night and ooooooooh it was nice!

The kids are on Christmas Break (ok, they are officially on "Winter Break" since that is what the school calls it now, but to me, it will always be Christmas Break) so there is no choir, which means I don't have to be there either.  So as soon as my wife went to bed, I broke out the sewing machine and started sewing... Unfortunately, I can not show what I was sewing because on rare occasion my wife actually does read my blog, and I can't let the cat out of the bag until after Christmas...

SO, I give you the next best thing to quilting on a quilting blog... My Kids!  We all love kids, of course we usually see cute little toddlers being cute little toddlers, and mine are all well beyond that stage.  But we finally had all four of them together in one spot, all dressed nicely after a choir concert, and I grabbed a snapshot.  Not the greatest photo, especially considering I am a photographer, but they were not up for an impromptu photo session, so I took what I could get.  All four of them within a few feet of eachother all looking at me at the same time...

Clockwise from left, MaryAnna (17 a week from Sunday), Josh (19), Jonathon (15 in two weeks), and Chyenne (11).

So now you have faces to put with the names you read here over and over again...

WARNING . . . . . . WARNING . . . . . . WARNING

What I am about to show you is HIGHLY addictive, click at your own risk...
ONLY click if you have a fresh beverage of choice at hand
You LOVE crafty thing and have HOURS of time
This little red button may change your life

After clicking this button I will not be offended if you don't make your
way back here today, but please don't get so lost in Cyber Space
that you never come back!!

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Until Next Time,

Monday, December 19, 2011

I'm Going Back to School

Please forgive my slight digression from my normal "Quilty Post", but I am going back to school to earn two degrees, a Master of Ministry and a Master of Divinity.  The Ministry degree is actually a byproduct of the Divinity Degree.  In the pursuit of my Master of Divinity, I will take all of the classes needed to earn a Master of Ministry Degree, so I will earn both.

I am not going to go into great detail here, but I am going to link over to a second blog where my posts will all relate to my pursuit of these two degrees.  My first post is up, and while it is long, it includes my story and explains why I am doing this and also contains information on how you can help, if you so choose.

I will be adding a button to the right where I will link over to my other blog very soon, but for now you can get there by clicking on the blog name "Paul's Ramblings"

I would love to have you follow over there as well.

Until Next Time,

Sunday, December 18, 2011


With TWO Give Aways last week, I have TWO winners to announce today!

First was the Blog Hop Party Give Away....  
Six FQs of Green Batiks from my stash...

And the WINNER Is....

Commenter #74 was Desi!
Desi @ Wee Share said...
Unique... maybe not... but when we lived in GA we always loved to go see the lights at Callaway Gardens. Now, we live in SC and this is something I miss.  Desi
Desi is a blogger whose blog is focused and centered around wee little ones.
Her blog header says, "Seeking Out Great Products for little ones and their families"
If you have little ones, check it out HERE (link will open in a new window).

Second was the big Give Away Day Celebration....  
For this give away I offered up a pair of my favorite scissors
Gingher 4" Curved Embroidery Scissors

 And the WINNER IS...


Commenter 225 was Sarah!
RyanSarahN said...
seam ripper - for sure. Thanks for the giveaway!

Seam Ripper was BY FAR the most common tool found next to sewing machines!  I didn't keep track, but I would guess it was mentioned in at least 70% of the comments!

Congratulations Desi & Sarah...  I have sent emails to you requesting your address.

Until Next Time,

Saturday, December 17, 2011

FINAL Day for the Give Aways!!

Today is the FINAL Day to sign up for each of my two give aways!!  I will be closing comments and drawing winners at 9 PM EST TONIGHT!!

Click on the photo to go to each giveaway post...


Gingher Embroidery Scissors

Until Next Time,

Thursday, December 15, 2011

I'm over at Sunni's Place Today...

Today, I am Guest Blogging over at Love Affair With My Brother...

Please visit Sunni's blog... I'll see you there!

I have to say, I love her blog name...

Don't forget to comment on my TWO current Giveaways


if you haven't already!

Until Next Time,

Monday, December 12, 2011

It's Giveaway Day!!

Well, It's Giveaway WEEK!!  And WOW are there lots of giveaways!

This week Sew, Mama, Sew is hosting Giveaway Day.  When it started it was A day, but there are so many giveaways now that "Giveaway Day" has expanded to "Giveaway Week".

Enter my giveaway and then head over to Sew, Mama, Sew and surf the net to enter more giveaways!  And YES, this is my SECOND giveaway post in three days and my third in less than 3 weeks!  If you haven't already entered, and you like Green or Batiks (hint, hint) head over to my previous post (clicking here will open the post in a new window) and enter that Giveaway as well.

If you are coming from the Giveaway Day Linky Party at Sew, Mama, Sew, WELCOME to my little corner of Blogville.

THIS giveaway is for one of my favorite tools in my toolkit.  A pair of Gingham 4" Curved Embroidery Scissors... Plus a little surprise.

In my humble opinion, this is a little pair of scissors that no quilter should be without.  They are perfect for snipping threads close to the fabric without cutting the fabric.  Mine are ALWAYS on my Sewing Rug right next to my machine.  I use them EVERY time I sew.  If you do any type of needlework (needlepoint, cross stich, hand embroidery, etc.) these are also a must.  I cross stitch as well, and when I do, I use these almost exclusively.  (I even bought a pair of cheapo, knockoff curved scissors to carry with me when  I travel.  I wouldn't want TSA taking my Ginghers, but if they take my $3.00 pair, well, I can afford to lose those...)

While I, like every blogger likes to have followers, I will not require my winner to be a follower, but please, if you feel inclined to, peruse a few posts, and if you like what you see, follow my blog.  The more the merrier, especially when creative criticism or input is needed!!

So, here's what you have you have to do to enter this giveaway... Leave a comment and tell me what tool is next to your machine EVERY time YOU sew.  Mr. Random Generator will choose a winner on Saturday morning...

Good Luck!

Until Next Time,

PS - to my International Friends... I am in the USA, and I will gladly ship anywhere in world where I can legally ship a pair of scissors.  I didn't try to verify that it was legal to ship to every country in the world.  For those that I did check, it would be legal to ship these... IF I find that I can not legally ship these directly to a winner in a foreign country I will contact said winner and offer a different prize.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Blog Hop Party Give Away!!

Hey Folks!!  I am doing TWO giveaways this week... Come Back Monday for another fun Give Away!

If you are visiting my blog for the first time, coming from Quilter's Blog Hop Party, Welcome to my humble little blog.  And, If you haven't visited the party, and you're here because you follow me, Go over to to Quilting Gallery by clicking on the Blog Hop Party photo below and enter a bunch of other give aways!!  242 blogs from all over the world are hosting giveaways this week, and they are all linked up there!

My giveaway is 8 Green Batik FQs from my stash plus a SURPRISE!!

To enter, tell me your family's most unique Christmas Tradition...
Our unique tradition is that our kids stay in their rooms when they wake up.  My wife and I come down and prepare breakfast, enjoying some time together, just the two of us before we invite them to join us.  We then eat breakfast together, we often eat supper together, but rarely do we eat breakfast together.  Presents wait until after breakfast.

Until Next Time,

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

I have decided to participate in Sew, Mama Sew's Giveaway Day... Next week, on Monday, December 12, I will post a giveaway, as will many other bloggers out there. 

You can visit my blog and enter my giveaway, and then go over to Sew, Mama Sew's page and follow the Linky Party and enter as many giveaways as you'd like!!

Stay Tuned, and come back on Monday for Giveaway Day...

I am considering what to give away between now and then... Help me out.  Leave me an idea or two... Would you prefer fabric, a notion, or something I've actually made.  A table runner, or a coffee cozie for example...

Until Next Time,

Friday, December 2, 2011

Traveling Stash...

I  just learned of the Traveling Stash...  A stash of Quilting Goodness that is traveling all over the USA... I am entering to see if the Traveling Stash can make a stop in Central Ohio!

IF you are a blogger, you can participate too!

Sara at Growing Stitches is the current host of the Traveling Stash.  Hop over to her blog and enter for your chance to host!

(I am borrowing this photo from Jess at Quilty Habit, the previous host of the traveling stash!)

Until Next Time,

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

MaryAnna's Curtains

Wow, it's been a BUSY weekend... Wait, It's Wednesday and I am just now commenting on the weekend!??  OK, so it WAS a busy weekend, and now it's been a busy start to the first week of the Christmas Season.  My full time "pays for the groceries" job is in Retail, so I am hopping busy all the time from September through Christmas.

So, I did get a few things finished over the weekend, one of them I'm going to share with you today...

MaryAnna's Curtains.  Lots of Photos...

The Fabric she chose for her curtains.  I decided to make reversible, two sided curtains.  So I told her to choose two fabrics.  She chose the prints on the left and right, but the leopard print is practically see through, and the brown print, while a nice dark color, was also fairly thin.  Together they blocked the light of a 60W bulb, but that big burning orb in the sky puts out a little more light than a 60W bulb, so I added a black material to the mix that blocks out the light very well.

The Primary Print.  This is a very soft material, almost like a blanket soft, but it is to light to make a blanket from.  It is VERY soft, and a nice print, but it would provide very little warmth.

The black was used as a "batting" between the two prints.  Here the leopard print lies face up with the brown print facing it, and the black laying on top.  I layed them all out, and spray basted the black to the brown.  Sewed all around the top and side edges, leaving the bottom open to turn the whole mess right side out.

After turning it right side out, and pressing it, I started quilting MaryAnna's Curtains.  I started with a 1/4" stitch line all around the whole thing to keep the edges clean.  I didn't want "Edge Creep", and this step secures the edges very well.
Then I needed to strengthen the top of the curtain where I would be securing the hanging hoops, so I sewed three rows of stitches, 1.5" apart straight across the top.  I LOVE the guide on my new machine!  I set it to the width I want, and as long as I keep the previous row of stitches directly under the guide, I get parallel rows of stitches every time without tape!!
The parallel lines on the backside.  I was using a new type of thread, so the first few rows of stitching I did, I layed it out and looked a the bottom side to insure that the stitching was acceptable both top and bottom.

Quick digression... This is Leah, MaryAnna's cat.  She has ventured between MaryAnna's room and our room upstairs, but she has been afraid to interact with the other cats.  She has been in our home now for three months, and she chose to make an appearance near the bottom of the steps while I was working on MaryAnna's curtains.  I heard her "Meowing", and grabbed my camera to capture the moment.  She layed there relaxing three steps from the bottom, until Espresso rounded the corner, then she bolted back to the safety of MaryAnna's room...

While photographing Leah, Mocha (who NEVER takes interest in my quilting) jumped right up on the table and started cuddling in the curtains, while they were still on the machine!  I couldn't believe it.  She KNOWS she is not to get up on the kitchen table, but there she was refusing to move.  You can see my hand there preparing to lift her off and forcibly remove her!  Stubborn Cat!!

After completing the rows of stitching at the top to strengthen the part from which it would be hanging, I needed to put in some vertical stitching.  So I marked where I wanted stitching with some pins...
And THEN I had to resort to tape.  The stitch guide is good for stitches closer than three inches, but I needed stitching further apart than that.  BUT I did put the tape 1" away from where I wanted the seam and then used the guide at the edge of the tape instead of trying to sew right next to the tape which ALWAYS ends with a gunky needle, because I inevitably stitch on the tape at some point instead of NEXT to it.
After I had all the vertical stitching done, I took a break and left the room for 5 minutes, when I returned, look who was back on the table!  And notice, she is refusing to look at me.  She KNOWS she is guilty, but maybe if she avoids my gaze I won't see her... Maybe.
I removed her and went to the garage to get the hanging hardware for the next step.  I was not gone 1 minute and there she was again!  This is the GOOD cat, that NEVER gets on things she is NOT SUPPOSED TO BE ON!!  Right there on the kitchen table, looking at me as if to say, "I know I am not supposed to be here, but I simply can't resist this material!"
The mounting hardware.  This is the backside of the front and back pieces.  I had to cut holes in the curtains and then secure the front and back through the holes...
So I marked the hole size with a sharpie, and sewed all around the hole with a zig zag pattern, and then I stitched a straight line on the inside and outside of the zig zag to strengthen the portion of the curtains that would be bearing the weight as they hung on the rod.
Selecting Zig Zag on my new machine is SO EASY... One button to push.  No plastic dials, no opening up the machine, no manually turning the machine to line up the lines on the dials with the gauge in the machine, just push a button!

And after sewing the reinforcements, the center hole gets cut out.
Then the front side is pushed through the hole to the backside...

And the backside is then secured to the front side, completing the process.  Repeat 7 more times...

I alternated the three sided shape so every other one is pointing up and every other one is pointing down.
After I finished, I went to get MaryAnna so we could take them up and hang them... When I returned, Frappacino had assumed her usual role of "Quilting Supervisor".  Frappy is ALWAYS climbing on things she is not supposed to and she LOVES it when I quilt.  She is always nearby.  But it's the look I'm getting here that cracks me up... "Mocha told me this was comfortable, and I JUST got here, don't you DARE move me..."
So, I am almost embarrassed to say, but for the past two months, this has been MaryAnna's window...

And THIS is her window NOW.  I was a little skeptical about her fabric choice, but I think it works well.

Close up of the curtain and rod.

MaryAnna is happy with her new curtains, and that makes me happy.  She is still a little "weirded out" by having a Dad who sews, but she is beginning to like the idea of having things made for her.  She recently picked out a shawl type thing that I am going to try to make for her.  I've never done clothing before.  Costumes, curtains, table runners, quilts, no problem... Clothes for some reason scare the heck out of me!

Until Next Time,

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Bonnie's New Mystery...

Bonnie Hunter is at it again, and for some reason, I can't resist.  Orca Bay, here I come!!

I don't know what it is about Bonnie at Quiltville that draws me so, but I must admit, she does.  I follow what she is doing, what she is working on, where she is teaching next, etc.

I sound like a stalker or something, don't I?!  Oh, well, So be it.  I'm not a stalker, but I AM a huge fan.

There are several reasons this might be true:
  1. Bonnie's blog was the first quilting blog I ever read.  A Google search landed me on her blog somewhat randomly due to her "Scraps and Shirt Tails" book.  (I was searching for how to make a quilt out of old t-shirts.)
  2. The first "Blogging Give Away" I ever won was a book from Bonnie's blog.
  3. Bonnie's tutorials are extremely well written.
  4. Bonnie writes from her heart.  She shares who she is.  Her blog is part of her business but it is also part of her life.  And she is not ashamed to share her life with the thousands of people who read her blog.
What is really ironic, is that my quilting style and Bonnie's quilting style really don't match.  I tend to be very anal about things like fabric choice, and colors matching exactly.  In my "Stars and Stripes" quilt, I had 19 different fabrics, I literally spent a month of lunch hours traveling to different shops until I found all of the fabrics that I wanted to use.

Bonnie's approach is quite different.  She is a scrappy quilter.  "Don't Worry about the print, if it's BLUE, it's BLUE, just USE IT!!" would be something you could find in one of her tutorials.  Someday I will have bins of scraps and I will be able to more easily embrace that sentiment.  Maybe.

Until then, I'll do her mystery quilts by purchasing fabric needed to do the quilt.  I was going to use old shirts this year, as I did last year, but I couldn't find enough black shirts at the Thrift Shop... So, I purchased a bunch of FQs and I am now ready to begin "catching up".  I'm already a week behind!

If you are doing Bonnie's Orca Bay, please leave a comment with a link to your photos or blog if you can.  I would love to see what you all are working on.

Give Away Notice...  Lily Pad Quilting is holding a giveaway of a Go! Baby... Click on the link below to go to Lily Pad Quilting and enter the giveaway...

Until Next Time,

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Week - Thanksgiving Day

On this day, I am Thankful for my Savior, Jesus Christ, and the debt he paid on my behalf though I did nothing to earn that gift.

May your day be filled with Thanksgiving for whatever it is you have to be Thankful for.  May you enjoy your favorite Holiday meal and desert... I know I am looking forward to Pumpkin Pie... It really is the only traditional Thanksgiving food I really like!

See you all soon... I'll be doing some sewing this weekend!  Will You??

Until Next Time,

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving Week - Wednesday

Each day this week I am giving thanks as we approach Thanksgiving Day here in the USA...

Today, I am Thankful for my Family.

My Beautiful Wife, Trish, is a gift from God Almighty that I simply don't deserve.  She is the light of my life and I don't know what I would do without her.  It's funny that our first date together was literally supposed to be a "rotten night".  You see our co-workers insisted that we would be the perfect couple.  I wasn't interested, as she "wasn't my type", and she thought I was the most arrogant, self absorbed person she had ever met and we had NO interest in dating one another.  But our co-workers would not let up, everyone from the hotel GM to the maintenance guy insisted we were perfect for eachother.

What's funny is we both sought advice, I from my mother, and she from her best friend, on how to get everyone to back off and leave us alone.  My mother said, "Take her out.  One date.  If you don't have a good time, it's your last date, and you can at least claim you tried."  When I took my mother's advice and asked her out, she consulted with her best friend who said basically the same thing... "Say 'Yes', go out with him and when you have a rotten time because he's such a jerk you can at least claim you tried..."

So, that was our first date. We both approached the evening with the sole intention of having a rotten time and getting our co-workers to bug off.  We ate dinner and somewhere between "What would you like to order tonight?" and paying for the check, we found that we had a lot to talk about.  So much in fact, that we wound up sitting in a park talking after we finished dinner.  We lost track of time and the next thing we knew the sun was coming up.  We had sat and talked in that park all night long.

That was 24 years ago.  We married a year and half after that first date, and to this day, I am also thankful for those nosy, needling coworkers of yesteryear...

Joshua, our first born child.  Joshua's name means "Son of God" or "Leader".  He is now almost 20 years old, a sophomore at the University of Akron, studying Polymer Mechanical Engineering.  Joshua is a fine young man who would make any parent proud.  He is successful at almost everything he tries because he gives 100% to be successful.  He is not willing to settle for good enough.

Jonathon.  Jonathon's name actually means "gift from God", and that he has been.  Jonathon is now almost 15 years old.  Jonathon brought laughter into our home.  Don't get me wrong, it's not like we weren't happy, we were very happy, we were just serious.  All the time, serious.  Jonathon's personality and outlook on life is anything but always serious.  Once again, God delivering exactly what I needed, when I needed it.

Chyenne.  Cheyenne came to live with us in June of 2010, and her adoption was finalized two days before Christmas, 2010.  Chyenne just turned 11 years old.  Chyenne has a bubbly personality, and is almost always in a good mood.  She quickly and readily embraces new and different things.

MaryAnna.  MaryAnna came to live with us just a few months ago.  She is almost 17 years old and is Chyenne's biological sister.  Her adoption will be complete sometime in March.  MaryAnna is a beautiful young lady who is a voracious reader and she LOVES to go to museums.

After having raised two boys, having two young daughters has been an interesting transition.  I now understand that t-shirt that says, "I'm her Dad.  I have a Gun.  Any Questions???"

I am so Thankful for all of my children.  God is good, and I am thankful that He has entrusted them to my care.  I am also grateful that He allows me to be the conduit through which He loves them.  It is a blessing I can not describe.

And I am Thankful for my extended family as well.  I don't want to leave them out of the Thanksgiving, for it was my Mom and Dad who raised me and who gave me the foundation needed to be the Father of a Family.  It was my brothers and sister who taught me to be a brother and gave me the experiences needed so that I could relate to my own kids' sibling rivalries, jealousies, etc.  It was my Grandparents who raised my Mom and Dad to be who they were, etc.  I have been blessed to have known Great Grandparents, and still have a living Grandfather who I talk to regularly.

If you've gotten this far, Thank You for letting me share my family with you.  I love each and every one of them more than I could ever put into words.

Until Next Time,

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thanksgiving Week - Tuesday

It's Thanksgiving Week here in the USA, and I am posting each day about something for which I am

Today, I am Thankful for the wonderful country in which I live.  Over the years I have traveled to over two dozen countries and I am so glad I am priviledged to be a citizen of the United States of America.

I don't want a political debate to ensue, so I'll just leave it at that, I am Thankful for my Country.

Until Next Time,

Monday, November 21, 2011

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner!!

OK, so this isn't Vegas, and we're not playing Black Jack... 

Mr Random Number Generator says Number:

is our Winner...

Quilter in the Gap said...
Well for me, I keep coming back because of how genuine you appear. I enjoy reading about your projects and your family. thanks for sharing your excitement.


I have sent an email requesting your Shipping information.
I will have your fabric shipped as soon as I hear back from you...

Until Next Time,

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Thanksgiving Week - Monday

I am going to take this week, Thanksgiving Week, to post each day something for which I am Thankful.

Being that this IS blogville, I will start here.  I am Thankful for all of my "On Line Friends".  I can honestly say that prior to blogging about my quilting, I never understood how people could get "attached" to folks they met online.  It seemed odd to me that there were actually people who considered other people whom they have never actually met "friends".

Then earlier this year, I started blogging.  And people I didn't know started "following" me.  And then I didn't post for two weeks because some stuff came up at home and work, and I just didn't have the time.  The "stuff" that came up wasn't bad "stuff", just "stuff".  You know.  LIFE.  Work got a little crazy, we got tied up with getting MaryAnna (our 16 year old soon to be fully and legally adopted daughter) settled into our home, and blogging just took a back seat.  I didn't even think people would notice, or care, but low and behold, I was wrong.  People DID care.  I got emails from three different people, just checking to see if everything was "OK"...

"Noticed you haven't posted recently... Just shooting a note to make sure you're OK".  WOW.  That touched me.  It really did.  In just a few short words, someone reached out like a friend would.  And in that first email, I had an epiphany... NOW I understand how people develop "online" relationships, because I have.

Of my now 120 followers, only one is family, and I have only met a handful of you in person, but I am Thankful for all of you.  Your encouragement, criticism, and ideas are all welcome and appreciated.

120!  Just a week ago it was 100... And I am celebrating 100 followers with a give away.  Go HERE to participate, TODAY (until 10 PM EST) is the last day to get your name in the virtual hat for this beautiful fabric... 20 inches of each, for a total of 100 inches of fabric!!

Until Next Time,