Monday, May 25, 2015

Stunning Stitchin Sunday - Memorial Day edition

It's amazing how time has flown by lately and just how much time has been spent doing everything except sewing.  That sad fact does not make this lady happy at all but hopefully there will be a little time this afternoon to get back into my studio.
This week has been a whirlwind of after school activities or meetings then we went to Old Sturbridge Village overnight Friday for Hubs' birthday and now we are concentrating on the yard/gardening work that we are trying to get done. 

Normal sewing will resume soon along with some painting projects that need to get completed.  I've got some fun events in the planning stages....namely a couple of upcoming charm swaps and a "if you want to make it too" unofficial Quilt Along.  Announcements will be made in the next few weeks so stay tuned.  

In the meantime, enjoy today's showcase.

Whatever your plans are for today, remember the reason for the holiday.  May we never forget.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Giveaway winner

Are you wondering who is the lucky winner of my Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day giveaway?  Well wonder no more.
 I tried again to show the actual picture of the Mr. Random result and can't get it to work (if someone can tell me how to do that I'd be very appreciative) but I was able to get it to show in text form and the result was

True Random Number Generator Min: Max: Result: 231 Powered by RANDOM.ORG

When I changed the  blog last fall, I lost my comment numbering (I definitely have to get that added back) so I counted down the list and the winner is:

I think gift certificates are always a great gift! Somewhere they can spoil themselves, craft store, coffee shop, salon....something of a splurge!

Congratulations Kristy!  I've sent you an email and as soon as I hear back, these Moda Social Club charm packs will be on their way to you. I can't wait to see what you create with them.
 I was really happy to find Kristy's blog, Hopeful Threads, because I learned that her blog is all about giving back in the form of sewing for others.  Her very first sewn donation was diapers that were sent to China with her dear friend when she traveled there to bring her new child home.  Of course, that struck a cord with me and I plan on helping Kristy with her projects and getting the word out in the future.  If you like to sew for charity, go check out her blog.

When I got home yesterday and checked my own email I got the happy news that I am a winner too.  Geta of Romanian Quilt Studio is giving me the choice of not 1 but 5 of her fabulous patterns.  It was hard to choose just 5 but here are my picks.

Thank you so much Geta.  I've so admired Geta's beautiful work for a while and now I can recreate some of her great projects myself.  And thank you to everyone that entered my giveaway.  You all had some great suggestions for the end of the year teacher gifts.  I've got a plan now, I just need to see if I have enough fabric that works, and then the sewing shall commence.  Stay tuned to see what I end up creating.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Stunning Stitchin Sunday and Giveaway Day last chance to enter

I hope that all Moms get to enjoy a fabulous day.

This is also just one of the times during the year that I think a lot about 2 other mothers that don't get to share the joy that are my kiddos...their birth mothers.  These 2 women, wherever they are and whatever life circumstances led them to making the toughest decision of their lives that led to their babies being placed in my arms, I will forever be in their debt.  Without their tremendous loss, I would never have become a Mom myself and that sad fact is never far from my thoughts. If you know a birth mother, make sure she knows just how special she is too.  I wish we had that opportunity with Jammer and Sunshine's birth mothers.

Today is the last day to enter my Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day giveaway. Entries close at Midnight Eastern today.
 Up for grabs are these 2 Social Club charm packs.  If you haven't already entered for your chance to win them, don't forget to do so on this post.
Now onto something more happy that you will surely enjoy.
Some very pretty quilting has been happening around the interwebs so take a little time for yourself to enjoy the show and please make sure you click through to each quilter's link so you can show them some quilty love too.
22. laugh yourself into Stitches*, 23. Kathy's Quilting Blog, 24. Ivory Spring, 25. Quilts of Love

I'm going to do a little gardening this morning and this afternoon we will be heading to my sister's house in my home town for a BBQ. My mom and all the sisters (with their clans) will be there so it looks to be a glorious afternoon. 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

It's Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day!

Monday morning I caught wind that Sew Mama Sew's biannual Giveaway Day was coming this week and I decided to dive in and join in on the fun.
It just sew happens that I've been thinking that it has been a while since I've hosted a giveaway. 
 My longtime readers already know all the crazy fun stuff about me but those of you that are new to my online home might want a glimpse into my world.

I'm a mom to 2 kidlets nicknamed Jammer and Sunshine.  They are 8 and 6 sure keep me busy.
Hubs is a volunteer firefighter (over 30 years) and past fire chief so we never know when his pager will go off and he'll be rushing out the door.  It has happened during a holiday meal more times than I can remember.

Last November I became a Moda Bake Shop designer and released my first pattern designed for that, Castles on the Horizon featuring Kate Spain's Horizon line.
I'm currently working on the design for my next Moda Bake Shop project which will feature Kate's new line coming out in October, Canyon.
And if you are wondering, Yes I am a full fledged, card carrying  Kate Spain fabric fanatic.  I have hosted not 1 but 2 Kate Spain Charm Swaps and I just might have a couple of more in the works for later this year (more details coming soon).

Let's see, what else can I tell you?  I also love Halloween prints and especially the Ghastlies.  I have a bunch of that one. I've made a few projects with it but many more are on my To Make list. Here is the cover that I made for my Lucy.
 And here is the mini quilt that I made for the Ghastlie Swap hosted by my good online friend Kathy of Kwilty Pleasures last fall.  She is a kindred spirit with me as she loves the Ghastlies and Halloween too.

I have a longarm machine (though at 17" it is technically a midarm) and her name so Penelope.  I've had her for 2 years now though we've only gotten to know each other over the past year.  She even got a fancy spa treatment last June that upgraded everything except her motor and now she purrs like a kitten. I just don't get as much time with her as I'd like.
I actually got into quilting because of 100 Good Wishes Quilts.  You can read about my journey here. So far I have made 4 of them and there are currently at least 5 more in the works. This one was for a sweet boy who was battling cancer and sadly lost last year.
This one was for a friend in California's daughter.
Two years in a row I made quilts for the kids' teachers as end of school year thank you gifts.  Here is a sampling of those. Nowadays I'm much busier and don't make full sized quilts for the teachers but I still enjoy giving them something handmade.

These 2 Red. White and Black Eight Pointed Star quilts were made from blocks sent by my blog readers in memory of my nephew Danny which were raffled off that year at the  annual softball tournament in his name.  This is the queen size one.
 And this is the lap size one created with the additional blocks that I received.  If you are interested, you can read the entire story about Danny and these quilts.  The link to all the posts is in my sidebar.
 This last quilt that I'll share today was the kids' art quilt for my daughter's school I created last spring. It now hangs for all to see in the school's lobby.
There are a lot more fun had on this here little ole quilting blog.  I love to host other events and some I've done in the past are: Modern Mini Mystery Round Robin (2 years), Quilt U Be Mine Mini Round Robin, Kate Spain Charm Swap Rounds 1 & 2, Halloween See Saw Swap, It's A Sister Thing Swap (2 years) and The Primary Bee.  Plus there are a few new ones in the planning stages.  I also host a weekly Stunning Stitchin Sunday post where I showcase some of the fabulous quilting I come across on the web.

I guess after all of this blabbering about me and my quilty endeavors, you are wondering what I'm giving away today. I looked through my special box of  giveaway goodies and decided to offer up to one winner this pair of Moda Social Club charm packs.
A few months ago I whipped up this duo of pillows with this fabric line and loved it so much that I acquired a couple of charm packs to give to one of you.
To enter:

1. Leave me one comment and just tell me....what sort of teacher gifts do you give each year, or if your kids are past this age, what kinds of gifts have you given in the past.  I'm looking for some new ideas for this year.

2. My followers get a 2nd entry and please do it in a separate comment.

If you like you can also follow me on Instagram at @crayonboxquiltstudio and on my Facebook page though there isn't much there yet because I'm still trying to figure out how to link all 3 of these together.

The giveaway will close at Midnight on Sunday, May 10th and the winner will be announced.  International friends are welcome to enter too.  Although I usually respond to all comments, due to the large number of them received during these giveaway days, I will be unable to do it this time.

I hope you have enjoyed this little glimpse into my world and I'd love it if you stick around.  You never know what fun little event that I'll decide to host next.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

New acquisitions

My poor wallet has taken a little beating lately.
I discovered some of the destashing groups on Facebook.
Dangerous I tell ya, very dangerous places to visit.
I don't consider these stash additions because I have specific plans for them.
After I joined the 1st group, I immediately came across a book I was looking for (more on that later) at a bargain price. Sold I said!
Next I saw these eerie gems.  My longtime readers know that Halloween prints are one of my addictions.  The purple spiders is a full 2 yard cut and the other 2 are FQ, all mine now for $10.
Then someone had the audacity to list these 3 Kate Spain Daydreams prints for $5 a yard. I quickly said "Yes please" to all.
 One more destashing group purchase arrived in the mail the same day as the above 2. This is 2 yards of 108" wide fabric that will be used for charity quilt backings. I'll be able to get 2 backings out of this and it only cost me $16. You can bet that I'll be shopping the destashing sites more in the future for backing fabrics at fantastic prices.
 On Saturday morning I made a short trip to a local guild's quilt show. (Pictures of the quilts to come soon). There were a small number of vendors there. At the first booth, my eye quickly saw the Pink Thomas Knauer Pear Tree piece and upon a little more looking, I grabbed up the blue/purple Kate Spain Terrain and the green Honey Honey too.  Those are all 1 yard cuts and were a whopping $8 each.
 At the other booth that I visited I spotted more Kate Spain for $8 per yard so these pieces from her Sunnyside line became mine plus the 1/2 yard Honey Honey piece above in the lower right corner.
The last booth had even more 1 yard cuts of Kate's fabrics but I resisted, though it was really HARD. So all told I became the new owner to 15 yards of fabric all on the same day.  But they aren't stash additions.  You will be seeing them used in future projects.  Really! 

Monday, May 4, 2015

Instagram swap

I joined my first Instagram swap.  I blame it all on my friend Kathy of Kwilty Pleasures.
She posted this image on her IG feed and of course I had to go and check out the details.
How could I not join in on the fun?  Me and Halloween themed events naturally go together.
I'm already thinking about what I want to make though I don't know who my partner will be yet. 
And for those of you that are IG swap addicts and wondering, No I won't be joining your ranks.  I like participating in swaps here and there as the themes grab my attention and the schedules work but I'm certainly not going to be adding my name to the hoards of them available to participate in.
This should be fun though. For me, keeping these types of commitments at a reasonable number is what allows me to do them.  Any more and I would be too stressed and that isn't want it is about. 

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Introducing Juno

There is a new member of the Crayon Box household and his name is Juno. 
He actually came to live with us 4 weeks ago, the Friday before I went to MQX.
I had been trying to convince hubs that we needed a cat (or 2), that the kids would absolutely love having a pet (he really already knew that) and although he really wanted a dog, there was no way I was going to go out early to walk it nor do the same late at night, let alone clean up the evidence in the yard. If he really wanted a dog, he was going to have to do all of that because I wouldn't. 

Juno came to us because a neighbor's daughter now has an 8 month old son who is very allergic and they made the painful decision to find him a new home.  They love that we are right across the street from her parents and we are encouraging them to visit.
As could be completely expected in the beginning, he was out of his wits scared and hid under the couch the entire first day but as you can see, he is now relaxed and makes every place his own.
Oh rub my belly....purreaseeee!
Oh, um Hi I guess.  That was me Juno above.  I had no idea when I came to this new home and new family that I now had a job to do too.  Jeez...what a guy has to do to earn his keep! Can some purrson purreaseeee tell me what being a "blogger" is all about?
I like this new place. The humans are really friendly but it did take me a while to get used to the shorter ones.  The tiny one in my old home wasn't able to follow me anywhere as he only crawled but these two new little humans like to follow me everywhere.
Mr. Juno, as Sunshine likes to call him, is 4 years old and is a beautiful gray striped fella with subtle bits of light orange and some white on his chest and paws.  He is a short haired guy, very soft and a real sweetheart.
He has been declawed in the front so no outside for him (though we might get a leash to give it a try) but he is really loving watching the critters outside the sliding glass doors. At his previous home, their backyard faces other backyards so not as many critters appeared to garner his attention.  We've got woods behind us.
He bonded to me first and the kids were really great about giving him plenty of time to warm up to them. Most mornings now as I'm sipping my first cuppa (which he is trying to stick his nose into) he snuggles behind me on the chair or makes himself totally unavoidable by sitting on the desk right in front of the keyboard.
Yo, human Mom, some chin scratching needed here!
He has found my studio and likes to take up space on my sewing desk.  Good thing I wasn't trying to sew anything at the moment. Thankfully he's still pretty skittish about strange noises so he isn't into going near the machines when they are running.
He's really curious and into checking everything out so we are learning as we go along what needs to be moved out of his reach.
My new Mom did introduce me to some really famous felines out there in the big world.  Wow!  I had no idea that some cats have furrrfan clubs. First she showed me the Smitty of the Tree Cats Ranch. How come he gets to explore outside and I don't?
Anyway, as she tells it, he is a real cerrrrlebrity in the blogging cats world.  
He also has a sister named Gracie who is a much more laid back kinda gal so I hear.
I also met the gang that hangs out at Kate Spain Designs.
The one in charge is Franny. She looks like she is all business and one I shouldn't mess with.
She has a big task keeping Lou and Roscoe in line and doing their jobs purrroperly.
I don't know yet if I like this blogging thing but I'll give it a good try for now and decide later.  
Hey do you see my gorgeous stripedy furs here? I really am gorgeous you know. 
Ok Juno, that's enough for now.  You can bet he'll be making more appearances here on the blog.  His typical toddler cat antics are a blast and of course he needs to now stay in touch with his newly found furfiends, but he tells me that he wants to meet more of the "impurant" cats in quilt blog land. Plus I haven't even told him yet about the annual Pets on Quilts Show. You can bet we'll be submitting some entries this year.
 Did you know...there is even a local ribbon winner, Mr Moe of  Vroomans Quilts. I wonder if he'll become my furfriend? Mom doesn't know so I guess for now it's snack time.
Hey can't a guy eat in peace around here?
Juno is hanging out in some of the same places that my Frankie did, like on the dining room chairs under the tablecloth, where he thinks no one can see him.
But under the couch is his spot if he wants not to be disturbed.  The center section where there isn't the metal framing for the recliner parts is just right and the kids can't reach him though we are teaching them that if he is there, he needs to be left alone.
It has been an interesting 4 weeks since Juno joined our family and I'm sure much more fun is ahead but right now, he's just itching to chase the birds or the squirrels outside.