i sew becuase it relaxes me...
all about me, my family and what we do.

live well. laugh often. love much. words to live by. but, what you may not realize is that those
sentiments are actually only a small part of a poem by Bessie Anderson Stanley written
in 1904. The full poem can be found below.

Friday, February 24, 2012

I've Mooooved! Moo Loud!

You can now find me at MooLoud.com!

I am happy to announce that I have officially moved.

The address has changed, the look has changed , and the features have changed.  But, its still all about my life quilting, sewing, DIY-ing, wife-ing, mothering, friend-ing, working, making life more fun, motivating others around me and the lessons my kids have taught me.  Also, my "Heather's Special" recipes for food and drinks are being thrown in there.

                CLICK THE LINK

                                             bookmark the page
                                                                    and post a friendly comment or two.

heather m.

As an added bonus, I have included a translator so you can now read my blog in your favorite language!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

"You Are Loved" and Focus Dory

Even though I have 3 quilts I need to finish I decided to start this one.  Sometimes, I just I want to work on something that is fun, new, and different.  This project has been FUN!  This was made using my new favorite technique, TUBE QUILTING!!!!

I have a tendency to start new projects before I complete the project I was working on.  I used to think it was because I liked to "multi-task".  In reality, I think it's because I have Oh-look!-Shiny-object! syndrome.  I do go back and finish up all the projects, they just get rotated.

I  think the best part of quilting is the story that is sewn into each quilt while they're being made.  Each quilt has aspects that are unique to the creator.  I'm not talking about the seams matching or fabric selections.  Each quilt has a piece of its creators heart sewn into it.

I have named this quilt "You Are Loved".  When it is complete I will write the story of how this quilt came to be, the meaning and what the inspiration was.  As a teaser though this small quilt is being made for a baby girl.  A baby girl that I see as being brave, illuminated and compassionate.

So, I used 3 yards of fabric so far this week!  I also got a new 15" square ruler!  It is AWESOME!  Who knew there was so much cool thing for quilting.  I love rulers!

Let me know what you think of the new design.

heather m. 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Let It Go!!!

Sometime in life we just have to just LET IT GO! 

I was thinking about something today.  How many time do we hold on to things that we just don't need.  I don't just mean the thing we can touch either; of course we all have more of that than we probably need too. I am talking about the baggage that we carry around from our past that we can't do anything about.  We can't change what has happened.  Hell, sometimes we can even accept it.  We just stand there paralyses by the fact that it even happened. 

Well, it did happen.  There is nothing that will change the fact that it did happen.  So we can take what we can from the experience and the rest we can just LET IT GO.  Let go of the blame, the resentment and the hurt that is keeping from doing something that will make you happy.  Take what has happened and either learn from it and don't do it again or decide to start over and make the same mistake again. Either way, you would have done more then just doing nothing while sulking. 

I have officially decided to LET IT GO!  Join me!!!

This is just a photo I really like of my Grandmother's garden.  The pink flowers and wheel remind me of here.  I am thinking about making a photo quilt.  I will likely do a portrait of my grandmothers gardens.  I thought it would be amazing if I could make a quilt of her gardens out of my children's old clothing.  It just seems I have so much going on I will never get to all these projects!  Anyone know how to get more time in the day?

heather m.   

Monday, February 13, 2012

Monday Motivation

"Just keep swimming.  Just keep swimming." ~ Dory from Disney's Finding Nemo

I have planned and carefully arranged everything down to the most minute details.  I know everything is going to be perfect.  I've rehearse it in my mind at least a dozen times.  Finally, I see the light at the end of the tunnel and the rewards that come with my success.  This is my moment to shine.  And then, BAM!!!  In an instant I watch all my hard work fall apart around me in what feels like slow motion.  I see nothing but the disaster that surrounds me.

Amazingly, these "disasters" are the times in my lives I remember the most.  These are the memories that make me cry, laugh, regret, rejoice, and, sometimes, just simply sigh.  These are the events that remind me my life is  intertwined with everyone and thing around me.  I can't control the actions and decisions others make even if when they effect "my plan".  I am only accountable to my actions and decisions.

Life throws me a wrench when it seems I am finally getting comfortable.  But, it is a disaster?  Is it a total loss and failure?  Or, did things just not go as I planned?  When everything around me is falling apart in slow motion I don't just stand there and watch.  My plans didn't fail.  My hard work hasn't gone to waste.   I find the reason I started doing "it" in the first place.  The "thing" that was going to make me believe I was a success.  It might be lost, but it is still there.

Now, I change my plans.  I make a new plan.  As soon as I can.  This one, too, will likely fail.  I have more failures than successes.  I will cry, laugh, regret, rejoice and, sometimes, just simply sigh.  And then, I change my plans.  If I stop and float I will never "succeed" so I "Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming." 

Started a new project this week!  I am done with the borders on my "Plans Have Changed" quilt and will be quilting it soon.  I need to piece the back.  I was just so excited about this fabric I had to dig in tonight.  My amazing daughter picked all this fabric out.  She is so amazing with color.

This is going to a bright and festive baby quilt.  I can't wait to see this quilt.  I will have to think of a great name during the next week.  Fabric purchased last week - 6 yards.  Fabric used last week - 3 yards.  Not bad...

heather m. 

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Monday Motivation

I can be changed by what happens to me, but I refuse to be reduced by it.  ~ Maya Angelou

Whether it is a welcomed, anticipated event, like the birth of a child or new job, or a forced, tragic event, like a diagnosis of cancer or death of a loved one, we are who we are becuase of what we have been through.  It is important to remember that even though we do not always like or accept what is happening, the events in our lives do not rule over us.  Theses events change who we are and form our beliefs, our attitudes, and our compassion for our fellow man. 

Do not let the events of your life reduce you, but let them make you stronger. 

Crazy, Crazy, Crazy... that pretty much sums up my weekend and week.  It has just been a whirlwind of fun whirlwind of fabric.  I have only used 1/3 yard this weekend but I purchased 6 yards.  Most of that will be used in the next 3 weeks but it does still count. 

I will keep all posted.

heather m.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

A Piece of History

If it was my last day on Earth, treat it like my first.
Go out the way I came in.
So innocent, so pure, with no thoughts of insecurity
Live life to the fullest, be what I want to be.
     ~ Wyclef Jean, "Heaven's in New York"

One persons trash is another persons treasure. I believe that is how the saying goes.  That is exactly what happened to me this week.  My neighbor cleaned out her craft room and called to see if I would like any of her discarded fabrics.  So I of course said I would be right over!

Along with various fabrics she was also getting rid of this small quilt.  This quilt was made from a 100 pound flour sack.  I have not idea how old it is or if it is even old.  I just thought it was too cute to let go.

I took it with me but haven't figured out what I am going to do with it either.  I was thinking about cutting it and making something else out of it.  I thought it was me SO SO SO cute as an apron.  I can cut off the faded red and add red binding all around it.

This will be a nice addition to my kitchen it I get to that project.  How many am I currently working on?!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Monday Motivation

"Remember there's no such thing as a small act of kindness.  Every act creates a ripple with no logical end" ~ Scott Adams
This goes along with doing something nice to someone today.  You have never walked a step in their shoes and you don't know what a person could be dealing with in their life.  A simple smile, holding the door for someone or a compliment on how nice they look can go a long way.  Just imagine if everyone you said thank you too said thank you so someone else.

I made great strides on my "Plans Have Changed" quilt.  Although it has honestly earned that name, I thought about changing it to "Seam Ripper".  Seemed to be my favorite tool yesterday.  Being that all my ideas for this quilt have been tossed out I am designing the borders and backing now.  I don't know what I will use or when I will be done but it is coming along. 

Other things going on this week include finishing up a denim apron and working on my "Fall Celebration" quilt.  I am trying to "clean closet" and get some projects out of my china cabinet.  Yep, I mean china cabinet.  Doesn't every store their in progress projects in the china cabinet?

It is going to be a great week.  I can just tell. 

heather m.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Small Things, Big Impact

It is the small things that make up the big things.  How often we forget that.  The brush of hands together, a quick hug just because you looked like you  needed one or a kiss goodnight because you just can't go to sleep until Mom kisses you goodnight.  While racing around trying to figure out how to get the laundry done, lunch packed or find a pair of matching shoes it is important to remember some of these "small" things that mean so much:
     a smile from across the room
     sharing the crayons with your brother
     singing a song together
     someone else cooking dinner
     talking to a friend
     waking up to a hot pot of fresh coffee
     a long, hot showers
     clean sheet day
     saying thank you
     kisses goodnight
     someone getting you a glass of wine
     having a shoulder to cry on

Make someone elses day and do something unexpected to make their day easier.  Let them know you are thinking about them and care about them with you actions not just your words.  It will come back to you two fold. 

This weekend I reflected on the above advise only to realize I am most definitely NOT doing that.  Besides reflect I made progress on the "Plans Have Changed" quilt.  I have the top pieced and just need to add the borders.  Since I can't figure out what I want it looks like a trip to the fabric store is needed!!!  I think I could get used to this designing as I go.  It is so opposite of my personality though.  Here is a peak of one of the layouts I didn't choose.  I laid out about 6 designs before I decided. 

heather m.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Monday Motivation

It is Monday, likely Tuesday by the time I actually post this.  A lot of the blogs I follow post an updates of their design wall on Mondays.  I don't have an official design wall so I decided I would have "Monday Motivation".  it is very simple.  I post an update on where my projects are for the week and a motivational saying of some sort.

Step 1 - Status report of project.

Here is were my "Plans have Changed" quilt is.  I love the way this design is coming out.  I would like to do a 7 x 7 square.  I don't know about borders, backing or binding yet.  This one has literally been designed as I go.  I am just going to keep with that theme.  I love the way it looks almost like ripples on water.  It just seems o have so much movement.  Basically this is 2 batiks, with solid brown and a geometric patterned aqua.  I am going to try out some different patterns but this is my favorite so far.    

Step 2 - Motivational Part

It won’tOne day we'll look back laughin’
At the week we brought her home
This phase is gonna fly by
So baby just hold on
‘Cause it won't be like this for long

It won’t be like this for long
One day soon you'll drop her off
And she won’t even know you're gone
This phase is gonna fly by
If you can just hold on
It won’t be like this for long

It won’t be like this for long
One day soon that little girl is gonna be
All grown up and gone
Yeah, this phase is gonna fly by
So, he's tryin’ to hold on
‘Cause it won’t be like this for long

- Darius Rucker, "It Won't Be Like This For Long"

Love them and hug them and rejoice in the time you are together.  It won't be like this for long.  Sometimes that seems so hard to remember.  Other times you just want to stop the clock. 

My happy boy
heather m. 

Plans to Live By

It has been brought to my attention three times in the past three days in unrelated instances that the best place to come up with great ideas is in the shower.  I thought I should write this down so I did. 

I love weekends.  I mean who doesn't.  I love hanging out with my family.  But, I don't love planning.  So, I never really have a good itinerary for the weekend.  That isn't always a bad thing; actually, I am fairly certain this is one of the few times in my life I will be able to not have a "plan" for the weekend.  This fly-by weekend went slightly slower than the other fly-by weekends!  Actually, fly-by is not the term I was looking for, maybe on track would be better.  We went to the Locomotive History Museum.  I think we had a pretty good time considering one of us didn't feel good, one of us wants everything their way and two of us didn't have coffee before we went.

I didn't get any sewing done this week.  Here is a photo of the way my "sewing room" has looked like since Tuesday.  "Sewing Room" is an entirely separate post.  We will get to that in the future. 

This is a small portion of the "Plans Have Changed" quilt.

I literally turned the machine off in the middle of chain piecing.  Headaches suck!  This quilt is just like my weekends, unplanned.  I started with extra fabric to "try this new thing".  I ended up REALLY liking what I made had twelve blocks and no more fabric.  So I re-cut my 12 blocks and added the brown fabric and HATED it.  Then I phoned a friend, regrouped, shopped and redid those blocks.  Now I LOVE it again.  It looks very unexpected to me.  I am now up to 48 blocks and have decided I need 49 blocks to complete my vision.  This is my "Plans Have Changed" quilt.

Although no sewing happened tons of planning was done,  I can't plan a weekend but I can a year of sewing!  I have some great ideas for 2012.  Things that will make me learn new things, take risks and just go with it.  Sometimes I wondering if I am talking about quilting or life.  I do quilt with cotton and cotton is the fabric of our lives.... you don't think....

My mom also sent me some new goodies!
My goals for this week are to work on the "Plans Have Changed" quilt, figure out if quilting is like life, stay on track and plan more.  But, most of all, I need to do more thinking in in the shower.

heather m.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Shore of the Beach

I got my toes in the water, ass in the sand
Not a worry in the world, a cold beer in my hand
Life is good today, life is good today
   - Toes in the Water, Zac Brown Band

During the hunt for the perfect "blog material" I have come to an astonishing conclusion; I am not as deep as an ocean.  I actually had a friend tell me today "shallow as a pond" seems to be a better description. 

News of presidential scandals, economic instability, job losses, budget cuts, war, crime, flooding, and snow storms swirl all around me.  I hear horrible news all the time; and I hear less then everyone else.  I made a choice that I would have less violence, despair, and hatred in my life. I got rid of the TV.  I sound Nobel but in actuality I cancelled the TV in June 2003 because I didn't have the money.  It wasn't until March 2005 that it became about keeping peace in my home.  My future husband moved and was not to happy about not having Internet or TV.  So we battled it out and I told him he could have one of the two.  Of course the Internet won. 

At that point I started to pay more attention to the information that was entering our home and minds.  I started to realize that it wasn't the voice I wanted us to hear.  So I made an effort to make the voices I wanted to hear louder and the other voices quieter.  I stopped watching violent movies and the news.  I immediately felt better. 

So now I spend most of my time doing and watching things that make me happy or have a message I deem good.  I spend my time trying to come up with ways to laugh more.  I already laugh a lot but there is always room for more.  I am all about fun, feeling good, and everyone being included. 

I figured it out today though.  I am not a deep person because I just can't be.  The only thing I have control over is myself.  I can't change the actions of the ones around me.  However, I can influence them.  I decided a long time ago I was going to be a positive outlook.  I am still figuring out how to do that but I can say I am better today then I was 5 years ago. 

So here is the "blog material"- keep a positive attitude and share a smile, kind word, and laugh together.  So if you need me you can find me on the shore of the beach.  I can see the ocean depth while I still have my toes in the water, ass in the sand and a margarita in my hand.  It's 5 o'clock somewhere. 

heather m.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Piece in 2012!

January has been a great month.  I have slowed down, taken some time off and spent more time having "down time".  I am amazed at how little down time I seem to have.  As part of my down time for January my wonderful daughter and I made this quilt.  It came together fast, looks great and is totally unique.  I am definitely making more circle quilts!

So, 2012 is all about having more down time with the family.  We plan to hang out with each other, enjoy each other and just be together.  Hopefully this will be a sign of a peaceful year with our family and friends.   

Here is the finished "Piece in 2012" quilt that Rayne and I made.  I LOVE the way it came out.

Kids have the most amazing ways of seeing things.  Rayne picked out all of these fabrics and the design. 

We had a blast making this and I can't wait to do another one with her. 

Also, Here is a sneak peak on another project I am working on!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Sewing Lessons 101

I know I had a great year in 2011 and I am looking forward to another great one in 2012!  Unfortunately, unlike other bloggers I do not have a photo log I can post with what I made this year.  I can tell you I will not have this problem next year!

Sewing Lessons 101 are well underway at my house.  My 5 year old daughter came to me and said "Mom I want a sewing machine."  I thought she was kidding, but after 4 weeks of " Did you get me a sewing machine?" and "Can you show me today?" I decided to teach her.  I WAS NERVOUS.  We went though how the machine works, what the parts of the machine are called and where not to put your fingers.  I put down green tape for her to line up her fabric.

Then she did it! She sewed her first seam.  It had a 1-1/2" seam allowance, was mostly straight and was all hers.  I was so proud.  HerE is the first project she completed.  I only made 4 of these seams for her.  She did the other 10 herself.

She has had about 9 lessons so far and she is doing great.  We have moved her green "line" so she is now at a 1/2" or 1/4" seam allowance.  Impressive huh!  She has made 2 purses and a blanket for our dog.

But that isn't enought for her.  She told me she wanted to make a peace sign. I was like.... huh!  I didn't know what else to do, so we Googled.  She found an image she liked.  So, she picked out fabric, I cut fabric, she sewed fabric, I ironed fabric, she sewed fabric, I cut fabric, she picked out more fabric.... you get the idea.

This is what we designed and she pieced.

I sewed it to the blue background she picked out.  She did the rest of the piecing.  I am so proud.  I am calling it "Piece in 2012".  Get it!  It is 42" diameter and I am quilting it tonight.  I can't wait to see how it comes out.

I gotta say, we are having so much fun with our sewing lessons.  I can't wait to see what she wants to make next!

I will keep you posted and I wish all "Piece in 2012"!