Sunday, September 29, 2013

Cleaning, Purging, Throwing Away, Recycling, Thanks to Girlfriends who I LOVE....

Boy is this saying the truth! For many years I rush home from Traveling and dump my suitcases and then try when I have time to pile papers, throw books in a pile and refold fabrics and try to figure out how to make things tiday and neat as I have my family for dinner, pay bills, sew new quilts, write books and you know, all of things we girls have to do. It got so I hated going to my studio and didn't know where to start.
In June my husband was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer and things had a whole new meaning to me. I either needed to burn the house down or try to make sense of everything I owned in my studio, storeroom and garage.
My friend laurie Latta and her husband came right over from clear across the state 9 hour drive to see us. While we discussed Mark's new diagnosis and they made us feel so loved, she suggested she come and help me get things in order in my studio. She didn't know what she was asking! I put that in the back of my head and then my friend Molly and Tina offered to come from California to help me dig my way out in between my teaching and taking Mark to Dr. appointments etc. Then my other 2 friends who belong to my "Cupcake " group that meets every summer (going on year number 15 next year) Susan and Eilene offered to come and help too. Mel was "IN" also but she has a 16 year old that needs his Mom home while he starts high school and since Mel has done so much for me all of the time I totally understood.
My neighbor Connie is my "go to" when I need help so she was "In" also.
So in NO particular order here are photos we all took.
I know, I know, you cannot believe all of the stuff I had and holy cow what a mess!
This sign has always hung in my studio and I always hope that my mess is blessed but really I wasn't blessed with everything and I was buried!
So here below is Molly and Tina who took on the first three days (they floew in from California....
The photo above was after they moved my desk in the middle of the room so my ironing board and cutting board were right there. They took down the old TV set and someday I will get a small flat screen plasma. I can wait for that someday. The BlueBOY painting is one my Dad did years ago and I love it.
This was inside my store room which had food, fabric, papers, kitchen gadgets, and loads of junk....Molly, Tina and Connie, totally emptied this out to start! YIKES.....
Now the storeroom has ONLY fabric in there and it is easy to see what I have when I need it and it will be easy to put away when I am done!
 This is the beginning of fabric coming in to be on the shelves my cousin built for me years ago....
There is TONS of fabric in there in case you cannot tell 
Below is how it was before the switch....we threw away the whie shelves as they were junk
Here is Tina trying to get everything off the shelves to redo them. The little gold cabinet went to my daughter who will paint it white and put in her daughter's room.
This is junk to put away or give away...she is still smiling....
This was what the girls walked into....they started to walk out but I locked the door and they were trapped...can you imagine me sewing in this? I had moved to my diningroom surprise 
All of the fabric you see here in my studio has been purged and moved to the storeroom
The storeroom that I always worried would burst into flames....Molly looking at me and wondering what she got herself in to...Can you blame her?
Tina made this nice little place on my wall...I love it and can find my rulers and rotary cutters!
The room getting emptied out....

Tina smiling but thinking "what in the world was this woman thinking???"
My neighbor Connie who is thankful she has a nicer place to come and find stuff when she needs to...she now knows ALL of my secrets
Purging, sorting dusting....
Below is Eilene who was with group two (the Office girls-it is her birthday can you imagine having to do this on your 60th? THAT is friendship!
Here is our garage which had all of my patterns, handouts, books and loads of other things one must have to own their own didn't look like this when we started and much of the stuff from the basement went into it and group two dealt with it (Susan my flight attendant friend) who many of you know and Connie my angel of a neighbor
here is group number two after they realize they get to go home. Laurie sitting down with her hand on her chin was the idea person here...I know they are all exhausted and thankful they get to go home after a job that was well done. Each group spent three days here. How can one repay this kind of kindness? I don't know.
Here is my sewing space when the sewing space was done and before the other girls cleaned the office which is clear and clean and fab. I feel gratefulness and guilt. I am trying to get rid of that last emotion. This is a time that I am growing and learning what friends are and how lucky I am.
Again this is where everyone started.....three girls took on this with me...but they knew what they were doing...I just did what they told me and was happy to. 
Here is my office now. My sona nd daughter in law said they didn't know I had a desk under all of the papers and stuff. I would like to be indignent but I really knew what they meant.
Happy girls having fun in the midst of all of the work! I think they should start a company that purges quilter's sewing rooms....they said they aren't interested....
Junk that needs a special place...maybe even the garbage or recycle or church that makes quilts or the Mission or?
Booksehlf that begs to be gone through...many books went to other quilters or the Mission or recycle....
I found the perfect place for my salesmen headers of fabric I take on the road to show people...that is a relief...I can find what I need
Girls after working for two days.....
Girls when I unlocked the door and let them go home....
I learned alot from this. If something is free, it doesn't mean you have to take it home....and get rid of some things before you bring more in!
Fabric gets old and you need to get it out to someone who will use it...why keep it if yu aren't going to use it?
These are six great girls who helped me out and I know I could have counted on other dear friends too. I am blessed by God with the best friends any girl could have. Not many in my own town but all over the US and Canada I have people I get to write to and pray for.
I am thankful for this past two weeks and I get to make new quilts in a new space.
Lucky me.....

Saturday, September 28, 2013


Decided this what we all need is a smile from the COW quilts....
FrankenSTEIN, COWlick, COWlorado, COWvered wagon,Bad MOOd,CALFeine,
I just ordered these pins which should be here any day now. If you order the Out of the Box with Easy Blocks from me in the next two months, you will get thise pin. This is for new orders only OR if you take a COW class from me any time in the next year, the pin is yours! I will be giving some of these out at the cow shows this coming month of Oct. also.
MOOshu beef,COWnt Dracula, Blue MOOn, MOOZealand, COWafornia, BOOvine,
And now back to the fun fun fun Cows that are done by friends from all over...we have well over 100 people now who have made them and these are just the ones we know about!
HEIFERvescence,MOOtini,MiniMOO,Udderly Whimsical,COWslips,SMOOch,
Honey MOOners,COWus Line, COWmadore,COWaflower,Claude MOOnet,COWlico
Below is the book with the cow pattern in is easy to piece and so fun to do....just the cow takes about 2 and 1/2 hours to do. I just cleaned my studio and so if you order it from me I will be giving you some extra good treats too.
, MOOla, MOOvers and Shakers, Haute COWture,COWtapult,COWlage,
COW pies,Bossy COW, MOOsic,COWnty Fair, Mad COW
Come and see many of these at AQS in Iowa next week for the Cow Stampede.
Boo MOO, COWch Potato,Honey MOOners, COWlories, UDDER Nonsense
COW tippin', MOOvie Star, PiCOWso, MOOvin Fast, Ice COWpades,COWnfucious
PhsyCOW, More COW bell, Le MOO's, Gay COWbalero, COWnfection, COWndiment
Red,White and MOO,MOOdesto, ChiCOWgo, MOOvies, MOOlala,UDDERly charming, COWasaki, BULLony,COWnt Your Blessings, COWabunga
MexiCOWli Rose, Hawaiian MOOMOO, MOOtana, COWtown, MOOey Bien, MOOn over Miami
COWyote, COWtapult, DeCOW, COWnition Fit, COWmunication, COWdiment
So this should put you well on your way for ideas to do a cow! There are so many ideas and if you would like to add an idea on my blog, simply write and suggest some other cow names. Carol Heuter sent me 82 different cow ideas! She is one creative gal!!!
Creativity is so much fun.
If your guild would like a COW workshop which is alot of fun, please write me.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

You are Special to Me and So was My Time In California....Look at the COLORS and Cows!

Here I am outside before I entered into Roxanne's quilt shop! So fun and boy do they have the exciting fabrics, threads, trims, and darling things for your home...this is Lorraine and me.
She set us up to take a little pin cushion, was it fun! I rarely get to take classes and I always want to and when I do, I am over the moon happy!
Here we are with out examples...mine will have twice more beads! I am the one on the left with the red pin cushion and the blue polka dot fun!!!
Here I am with "the" Roxanne. I have known her a long time and she is just an awesome girl with a heart of gold! She and I love bright whimsical things and angels for sure. Her shop is in Camerillo (I think)...or somewhere close to there....good Mexican restaurant close too. It is on my top five best quilt shops ever!
It is great having good friends and Mel McFarland who did Out of the Box with Easy Blocks with me loves to make doll clothes.
My two Granddaughters both got American girl dolls from their other Grandmothers. I could never afford a real one. Anyway, they come over and bring their dolls and they play and we have tea parties. I bought a cute pattern book and Mel offered to bring it home and make clothes. So far she has made both of the girls a dolly quilt, a sun dress and adorable pajamas. The girls do not know this yet and I know they will be thrilled...who wouldn't be? I wish I had a doll to dress miniature cute!

Aren't these sundresses the cutest???
So fun and it will be so nice to show them to the girls who will love them!
My cousin sent this to me and make me laugh...because with my kids this was true....

The girls above too the pincushion class with me...Pam, Jane the designer and Lorraine,,,we had a great Mexican food lunch...really good (Rudy's)

Here we talked Roxanne into getting on her incredible counter so we could get a fun photo...boy is she a good sport!
Look at that counter! I want it in my kitchen...when I have the lotto house built that is....
Below are just some of the nice ladies from the Camerillo guild which I LOVE to teach for...I have made lifetime friends there. I taught the cow class and we had so much fun!
Below is the beginning of Julie's car racing cow
Next is an awesome cow with a fab background....I am having a sr moment and blanking on a name I know well!
Next is Pam Burdicks cow above...with cow boy boots no less and fringe on!
Below is Lorraine's cow in the vegetable look at that udder!
In my lectures I always always end with four nice things every quilter should do. One of them is "share your stash" and I suggest that when a friend has a bad week that you buy them a couple of fat quarters with a chocolate bar and wrap with a ribbon to make them feel loved...the next day Julie went up to Ron (a  quilter) and handed him the fabric and candy. I asked If I could take a photo and he offered to leave the candy wrapper and maybe wrap a piece of cardboard if I didn't take it soon enough...haha. Julie you are a doll and did the nice thing. Thank you for perpetuating quilting and for being kind too.
When I win the lotto, I want a machine just like this only black...and they have one there...hope I win soon....
Below is Pam's purple cow and she is doing it as a Christmas story quilt when she got this for a gift...isn't he cute?
Next is the dancing cow....forgot her name....
We had 22 lovely people in the class.
If you belong to a guild and want a FUN, creative class, maybe you might consider hiring me to do the Cow Parade.....they are not hard and they come out all different and all cool.
We will have 30 of these in Houston and over 40 at AQS in Iowa! Won't that be wonderful? Hanging together and all different including what is hanging from the udders is really fabulous. You hear so many comments and people is a happy way to make a happy quilt.
     Friends have so blessed me lately and several times I totally forgot about my husband and troubles at home. It is so fun to laugh and enjoy life and quilting and nature and God's many blessings.
I told my class this week that it REALLY is important to tell your loved ones and your friends how much they mean to you. You do not know how long you will have to do this and as life becomes more precious, you realize how good it feels to tell those around you how special they are. AND friend, YOU are special to me.