22 September, 2018


What does the word REBOUND mean to you? According to the Google online dictionary there are three different definitions:
1. to bounce back through the air after hitting a hard surface or object.
2. recover in value, amount, or strength after a previous decrease or decline.
3. (of an event or situation) have an unexpected adverse consequence for (someone, especially the person responsible for it).  Obviously these are not the same definitions that a quilter would use; we would use the word "rebound" to refer, in the past tense, to a quilt that has had its binding replaced. It has been rebound. Now, why would a quilt possibly need to be rebound? For the very best of all reasons: because it has been loved to pieces! Gregory's six-year-old Picture Play quilt has had its binding replaced and it is ready to go back to his house.  This one is nearly ready to be retired, Nana is making him a new quilt, a bigger-boy one, for his bed. But this one will always be his first bed quilt. 
I can scarcely believe that this was six years ago. 
I only hope that he will love his next quilt as much-- to pieces. 
It's why we make quilts!
Life is Good!

12 September, 2018

Never Too Late

It's never too late to change your mind; at least not when it comes to finishing a quilt.  This one was a long time coming too, it had been loaded and unloaded off the rails more times than I can count; to quilt other quilts. Finally, last weekend, this Sampler saw that last quilting stitch go in and it was time for trimming and binding.

I laid it out in the foyer to get some quick snapshots last Sunday afternoon. As you can see, I heavily quilted this one; creating different fills and patterns in each block and filling in with whimsical feathers. This is why it took forever for me to complete, there was much auditioning and thought process involved.

This quilt is the result of a block-of-the-month from at least ten years ago. I had purchased enough of a small coordinating print (with that celery-green as its background) for the backing and had carefully stored it in my stash closet all these years, so I was good to go. I remembered, on Sunday, that I had also stored enough fabric to bind this one. Could I find it? NO! I thought, for sure, that I had enough of that brick red to cut 363" linear inches of binding. I tore the closet apart. It wasn't there. I was sad but undaunted, I knew that I could always use the trimmings from the backing to make enough binding and call it a day-- DONE! I meticulously cut the binding and attached it all around, even marking my stitching line so that it would be absolutely perfect. All the while, though, I wasn't happy with the binding choice. It needed to be darker, it needed more pizzazz. I talked myself into stitching it down onto the quilt anyway; after all, what else could I do? I stitched 7/8 of the way around the quilt (including all four mitered corners!) before I stopped. I decided to look for my designated binding fabric one. more. time. I walked to the stash closet. There it was! Sitting ever so sweetly mid-way down through the stack of neatly folded red fabrics; and, of course, there was exactly enough! I was speechless. Off came the binding pictured at the top of this post. Yes, it took me a few more hours to pick all the threads, make new binding, attach it and baste it down. I am ready to finish this one now for once and for all-- with a satisfied smile on my face. My mother's words ring in my ears: "if it's worth doing it's worth doing right"; that applies to finishing too! It's never too late to change your mind. Oh, and now this quilt has a name: "Never Too Late"; it is appropriate on oh-so-many levels. 
I need a better inventory system in that closet though!
Life is Good! 

04 September, 2018

Week Two; More Firsts!

A Stop Along the Peak to Peak Highway in CO
Our last day in Colorado saw us traveling the Peak to Peak Highway in the Rocky Mountain National Park, the scenery was breathtaking. Sadly, the entire time we were there we found the views altered by the haze from the wildfires in CA at the time. The highest elevation along this stretch of scenic byway was 9,300 feet and it was very breezy and cool (59 degrees) when we stopped at the Visitor Center. I'm unsure about the reason for the sturdy logs on the roof there-- perhaps to help with snow control, alleviating avalanches off the slope of the roof or maybe to keep the roof on the building during heavy wind; maybe both!  One thing that the Coloradoans are serious about is snow fencing. It, like the log grid on the roof, is sturdy and built to stand up to heavy snow drifting, or at least to help keep it at bay.
Our journey from there took us across Kansas as far as Abilene, our destination for Friday and Saturday nights. 
We stopped along the way at this quilt shop in Hays. I raved about their customer service in a post last week. If this shop is your vicinity or on your travel itinerary please do stop in! You'll be happy.
We ate lunch in Hays too, at Whiskey Creek. Now that I am a horse-woman, naturally, I can't stay off! On Saturday morning in Abilene we were up and ready for our first stop of the day: The Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum.

This was a fascinating stop, I learned so much about Eisenhower, both personally and from the historical perspective. Eisenhower was president when I was born. I recall reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, with my hand over my heart, in my first and second grade classrooms, where we then sang "My Country 'Tis Of Thee", all under an American flag and a framed picture of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, both of which hung prominently in the front of the classroom above the chalk board.
The tour began at Eisenhower's boyhood home. Unbelievably, the Eisenhowers raised six sons in a home that, at the time, was a mere 818 square feet! A family of eight; without indoor plumbing.
Mrs. Eisenhower made the bed quilts that are still displayed on the beds today; this bedroom also contained her original treadle sewing machine, the machine she used to construct them.
This picture was taken in the kitchen. The original "dough box" (lower right of photo) was used for rising bread dough-- she made bread three times a week, nine loaves at a time! Imagine feeding six growing boys! Indoor plumbing and the downstairs bedroom were added in the later years, after the boys were grown and gone.
This was the family in 1902 (l) and a recreation of the same photo (r) in 1926. President Eisenhower is pictured on the far left in both photos.

It was a short walk from the boyhood home to the Library, all are located on the same grounds. The Museum itself is closed due to a massive, ongoing, renovation. We toured the highlights of the Museum which have been temporarily moved to the Library; honestly, I didn't feel as though we missed much, but I guess we'll have to return one day to find out. 
There were so very many artifacts of interest. This one, above, puts perspective to where we are today in terms of communication, comparatively. Both President Eisenhower and Mamie are buried on the grounds. After learning so much about them I now want to go to Gettysburg, PA to visit the farm. It's always a good thing to be planning our next adventure! Also in Abilene, we discovered, is the Greyhound Hall of Fame where we learned all about breeding Greyhounds and the history of racing. We met two retired dogs there, they greeted us in the entry area, Ginger and Gary. One more site of interest, especially to Mr. Goodneedle, was the Russell Stover Outlet Store w/ ice cream shop!
We couldn't buy chocolate candy while traveling by car but that didn't stop us from sampling the chocolate in melted form, over ice cream!
On Sunday we worshiped at Trinity Lutheran Church in Abilene. We have dear friends who have been relocated here, in fact he is the Pastor at Trinity. We enjoyed being together again for the day. I loved this old, historic church and beautiful sanctuary. I'll bet you can't guess what I thought the ceiling looked like. 😉 After a lovely dinner with our friends at an historic hotel in town we headed east, with Missouri in our sights for the night. 

Stay Tuned
We started the next morning off in Hamilton, MO. The home of Missouri Star Quilt Co. I will save my adventure there for another, separate, quilty-post.😀 It will be worth the wait.

 By afternoon we were in Independence for another stop at yet another Presidential Library. 
I must admit that I had forgotten much from history classes in my past, this stop was full of facts.

 The tour, and accompanying films, were most informative and of great interest. This tour concluded at the point where Eisenhower took office; we were working backwards, time-wise on this trip. This was the first Presidential Library that I have visited that predates me; giving me all the more reason to learn as much as possible.  
From the desk of Harry S. Truman.

Both President Truman and Bess are buried here, at the Library site in Independence. 

We continued our journey east from there, toward St. Louis, we spent our last night on the road in southern Illinois; from there it was a straight shot home. Thank you for allowing me to post this summer wrap-up, it helped me to revisit our trek across this great country of ours and reminded me of two more quilt-related posts to come! Missouri Star, as promised (and teased) and my visit to the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum in Golden, CO. Stay tuned~  

Life is Good!

03 September, 2018

Two Weeks Full Of Firsts!

A few weeks ago we were on the road, for a few weeks. Mr. Goodneedle was making a presentation to at our National Church body's annual Convocation, which happened to be held in Denver this year; we decided to take in the sights and pack in some activities along the way, there's always time for yet another road trip! We took the l-o-n-g way from NC to CO. and began our westward drive along the gulf coast with the car headed in the direction to San Antonio, eating some amazing seafood along the way!  I had never been to San Antonio before and loved every minute of strolling along the River Walk. Since today is Labor Day and the un-official "end of summer" I am offering this post as a summer wrap-up from me. C'mon along in this super-condensed photo journal of "How I Spent My Summer Vacation"-- crossing items, one by one, off of my bucket list.
The Alamo-- another first and an historical site to remember.  
We spent the next day driving across Texas. Oh, yes; all day.
We broke up the monotony with lunch at Whataburger. Another first.
One of their slogans: "Hours of operation: all of them." 
Finally, the scenery began to change by nightfall. 
We cut off the corner of New Mexico and entered Colorado. 
Speaking of scenery changes: who expects this so far away from the coast? 
Yes, the Great Sand Dunes are all that and more. Hiking to the tops of the dunes is a workout!
We rented boards to ride down, I felt much more confident riding on my widest part.
It really was fun-- the hiking back up was the hardest part of all.
Mr. Goodneedle was much more adventurous and truly showed off a great sense of balance!
Even after all these years, he continues to amaze me; he rode all the way down without wiping out.
The next morning we were off bright and early to the Royal Gorge. 
The bridge spanning  is spectacular; open to pedestrian traffic, 
we walked across before the Royal Gorge park was open for the day.
Each state is represented on the bridge, ours was in need of refastening. 
 Not content to merely stroll across, Mr. Goodneedle found his place to zip-line across the gorge!
I may have accomplished a lot of firsts, but chose to keep my feet on the ground for this one; he loved it!
The next day we went white-water rafting out of Buena Vista on the Arkansas River. This is the only photo that I have of that day; we left our phones and cameras behind where it was dry. Suffice it to say, it was a fabulous experience! We joined up with church friends from back home at this point, and for the next few days, they were also attending the same Convocation, as delegates. Our guide on the river expedition was great, and we all stayed in the raft; but none of us remained dry!
This is truly a first; a big one for me! Although I think horses are beautiful, they have always struck fear in me. I cannot tell you why. So, agreeing to go riding, for me, was truly a conquer-your-fear-by-digging-deep-(really DEEP)-moment! I don't know at what point on the trail ride that I began breathing again, but it did happen. We rode out of a stable in Estes Park into the Rocky Mountain National Park. The weather was perfect and the horse (mine was named "Last Call") proved trustworthy. 

When I choose to recall a memory of a perfect day, this may just be the one. I have changed my tune about horses; I can no longer use the excuse that I think they've outlived their usefulness. Oh, no! 
 From the Rocky Mountain National Park we traveled with our friends up to Greeley for a tour of his brother's farm there. We had a wonderful time being escorted over all the acreage and learning about his Holsteins.
I could appreciate the farm from an entirely different vantage point while sitting up in one of these!
The Convocation-- Mr. Goodneedle on stage making his presentation. What a week we had. At this point we bid our friends from North Carolina good-bye and headed out for our final week of firsts.
To be continued...
Life is Good!