Lucy Boston

Sunday, February 28, 2010


How do you judge a retreat to be "successful"?
For me???
This is success:
comaraderie, food, solidarity, food, commonality, laughs, and laughs and laughs.
I had all of that and more!
Maybe not enough sleep,
but definately enough food.
And definatley enough of all of the rest of the prerequisites. 
But when I was doing my check list?
I forgot my floss for my Wool Crazy!!!
What's up with that?
So, I worked on the wedding quilt gift the entire time!
(Which was probably what I really needed to be working on anyway!)
Recognize this?

Yes, this is the book that I said is really
"fabulously quick-cut". 
NOT "fabulously quick-put-back-together"!

This is the quilt I have chosen - Anniversary Stars.  Yes, those are more half-square triangles. Yes, those are more bias squares.  Yes, I am feeling just a little tired of both half-square triangles and bias squares after the Snowball Quilt Challenge from this same book.
But it is another beautiful pattern. 
All in browns and creams, with dark brownish-blacks for the star points. And it uses up a lot more of those scraps that are in my life, which is also a good thing.
All of the blocks are done.
Not pressed, but all sewn.
That is a good feeling - the accomplishment of a project coming together.
So that is success in my book--
friendship, camaraderie, and LOTS laughs and LOTS of piecing.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Self-imposed retreat

I'm off to see sew the wizzard  this weekend,
this wonderful weekend of fun!!!

A self-imposed retreat...
though there is really no imposition.  No imposition at all.
It's a little sew-in ...
A friend offered her home,
an hour and a half drive away...
away from ringing phones, laundry, cleaning, you know, stuff.
Heading toward:
comaraderie, food, solidarity, food, commonality, laughs, and laughs and laughs.
machine - check
wool and floss - check check
three projects in progress - check check check
over night bag - check
my food contribution: 
beef-barley soup & veggie-dill bread - check check
dark chocolate - CHECK CHECK CHECK

I received the floss I ordered from Pumpkin Patch Primitives - It was exactly what I ordered and more!!!  The colors are perfect for the Wool Crazy project that is going along with me this weekend.
I had also asked Brenda at PPP for a brighter red - and she sent me this -  It's "Buckeye Scarlett",
perfect for an Ohio girl who needed a bright red!!! I love it and will have to order more, as I have plans - I have a design in red work to stitch!

It kind of feels like I am going to play hookie.

I don't know what that hookie would be from...
but how fast can I pack up my stuff and get outta' Dodge?

I'm off to see sew the wizzard this weekend,
this wonderful weekend of fun...
.....because, because, because, because, because,
because of the wonderful quilting hooplas.....

Thursday, February 25, 2010

trip around the sun

A new year, 2010... 
The start of a new decade (the tens?). 
Another trip around the sun. 
Another trip around the sun starts for me today...
It has been a great ride so far. 
So many great people are in my life. 
So many great laughs and tears (happy and sad). 
So many great years.
So many great decades.
I don't make those resolution thingys. 
But I do keep a promise. 
(Which I guess could be construed as a resolution....nah) 
Anyway, I was thinking about my "Out-loud promise" to my Great Grandma B. 
My "learn something new every year" promise. 
(If you missed this whole out-loud promise info, check it out here.) 
Here's a quick review: 

When I was just a little girly,
my Great-Grandma B made me promise, out-loud,
to learn something new every year. 
She said that women were under-rated and under-appreciated,
and WE could do something about that
(She might have been pointing her quilting needle at me at the time,
punctuating her emphatic-ness, I don't remember!).
(yes, emphatic-ness is a word)
So, I made that out-loud promise. 
Out-loud to myself, and out-loud to Great-Grandma B. 
Sometimes I think ahead
to try and come up with something
I would like to learn to fulfill that promise. 
Most of the time it just sneaks into my life
and I realize that I just learned my "something new" for the year.

There are SOOOO many things to learn. 
So many things to try. 
So many things to finish
(among other things:  quilts, quilts, more quilts).
I don't want to waste the time I am given. 
I think that things happen for a reason. 
We ask the good Lord above for guidance. 
And we receive. 
Sometimes we receive exactly what we asked for. 
Sometimes we receive exactly what we didn't ask for, but needed. 
Most of the time we receive what we need,
but don't know why we needed it until much, much, later.

Because it's time for my 51st trip around the sun to begin,
I've been thinking about another great opportunity
to learn something new again this year. 

To fulfill my promise. 
To myself. 
To Great-Grandma B.

What shall it be, what shall it be?

Monday, February 22, 2010

dark, dark circles

I am really enjoying all of the Olympics I have been able to watch. 
Truth be told, OK, I am watching Waaaaaaaay too much of the Olympic games.
So much so, that this is after the first few nights:
Then, after the next couple of nights:

After the first week, I tried this:
When this really didn't help (oops!, I ate more of it than I put on my face!)
I decided I should just go with the flow--you know, make a statement:
"I watch all of the Olympic games, and I am proud of it!"
And this was my second try at "going with the flow" 
(it's just really hard to see to hand stitch with these things on my face):

Then, I decided, Oh, what the heck...
the Olympics are not on much longer anyway, so
this is what I'm going with now:

How often are the Olympics around anyway???

Sunday, February 21, 2010

weekend retreat

Home safe and sound from teaching at a retreat.  A lot of teaching, but they enjoyed learning paper piecing - there were many folks who had never even tried it.  I also was able to cut a lot of strips for a wedding gift quilt project of mine, and just a little sewing.  The retreat was held in the Canyon Inn at McCormick's Creek State Park in Indiana. So quaint and lovely and the staff was wonderful!!!  Laura, the Activities Director was just a sweetheart!  She was able to have part of the weekend to join in on the retreat, and she took to paper-piecing like she is a pro!!! 
Really, if you have the chance to head in the direction of south-central Indiana, stop and visit - there are great hikes and paths, multiple types of lodging, wildlife, beautiful scenic views any which way you turn, and a great staff!  Pictured above is the Oak Meeting room, picture taken from the back opposite corner from where I was stationed.
<< We "Ohio State buckeyes" had our "Buckeye Corner".  Those are my cohorts: left to right - Monica, Diane, and a new "Hoosier" friend - Kay.  There was also a quilt show held in the downstairs Sycamore Room.  It was so nice to visit with other quilters, see their projects, and have a weekend away! 
Of course, we HAD to stop on the way to the retreat to visit at a few quilt have to stop and use the restroom somewhere, don't you???!
We stopped at a couple of shops in Ohio-
They are both great shops to visit along Rt. 70 west near the Dayton area.
The closest shop to the retreat was
 Backdoor Quilts , just south of Indianapolis in Greenwood.
The front of the shop was cute, and notice that there was NO snow (ok, I snagged this outdoor photo from their website!, which taken in the summer, so of course there was no snow!)  I did take a couple of pics inside the front door:  the first is a shot straight into the shop - look at all of those great samples!!!  and there were kits made up for many of them.  The pic showing the basket quilt was taken because back in this corner were all of the hand-stitched embroidery quilts.  Again, so many samples and such gorgeous work.  There was a whole wool section, and a reproduction fabric section.  These two photos only show about half of the shop.  I think I drooled on almost everything here!
I behaved at all three of the shops...just a few small pieces of yardage and a little tin that I will use to store my needles after I put in a little sheet of magnet.
Back to work for me tomorrow...I feel the call of the quilt shop! 
Like I haven't had enough quilt stuff lately!!! 

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Hearts & meet G.C. Blue Boy

In honor of Valentines Day and American Heart Awareness Month, I chose to make heart*** pincushions for the class I am teaching this weekend at a retreat that is in south-central Indiana, a four and a half hour drive(The retreat is at the Canyon Inn/McCormick's Creek State Park).  The class is to be a paper-piecing class, so I made up samples - one in red/white/blue, and the other in black/white, but both have red hearts.   I think they are both keepers.  (please, remind me that I said that when I grab one to give away as a gift!)  After making the samples, I made up fabric kits with the patterns enclosed.  I cut the fabrics the correct sizes & layed them out in the correct order.  This was done in an attempt to keep within the alloted time period for the class.  I figured a lot of time could be spent choosing fabrics, so let's just eliminate that!
  Do you recognize this guy?  Meet G.C. Blue Boy. (That's what I called him, he is really a Grand Cayman Blue Iguana.)  I met him on Grand Cayman Island.  He seemed friendly, and he posed very nicely for this picture, so I decided I would save a pic of him.  And, I put him here as a reminder to use Lizard Litter as my pin-cushion filler. 
 Lizard Litter.  Lizard Litter.  Lizard Litter. 
Ok, enough of that, but it is fun to say. 
Lizard Litter is crushed walnut shells that is used as, well,
litter for lizzards, other reptiles and I guess some birds, too. 
(It's in the pet litter section at discount or pet stores.)
If you haven't tried it for pin-cushion filler, then you need to.  It's much cleaner than sand, isn't as fine as sand, so doesn't sift through the fabric, and makes a nice, dense filler that's just the right weight to keep your cushion where you put it.  (Oh, it's also good to have on hand in your car emergency kit to use to sprinkle as traction in this nice weather we are having!).

Now that I am ready for the teaching part of this retreat,
I should gather up my stuff for the project on which I will be working. 
I have a plethora of 'started project' choices. 
I also have a plethora of 'new ideas' choices 
that I know I shouldn't start
but would really like to.
I think that I have the plethora narrowed down to just a handful. 
The one that's in the lead is the wedding gift
that needs to leave the house,
completely finished,
by March 6th. 
Yeah, I really should just take that one!

So wish me luck with the travel to the retreat.
There's supposed to be another big "snow event"
(yes, that's what the weathermen are calling it)
heading our way for the weekend. 
I definately would rather be snowed in in my home,
 than out somewhere four and a half hours west of here!
Quilting projects or not!

***thisHeart pattern was a freebie from a local quilt shop that has been gone for many, many years.  The pattern was much larger, maybe pillow size, but I decreased it and used it for teaching purposes. I don't know where the original pattern came from, but I think it may have been with a fabric line.  I know there was a pattern in The Quilt Maker magazine a couple of years ago that was very similar. 

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

smile thoughts and quilts...

Smile #1:
Brenda of Missouri - your Wool Crazy Book you won in my Anniversary give away is now on it's way to you.  We finally got ourselves dug out of the snow and there are no postal holidays for the rest of this week, so you should receive it by the weekend.

Smile #2:
My second younger brother had a birthday before Valentines day. 
I called him that morning to wish him birthday greetings
and I asked him what he was doing for his birthday. 
His response:
Driving (a good hour drive) to go look at a Backhoe that was for sale.
Really???  Birthday Backhoe???
I'd take cake anyday!

Smile #3:
Then I saw my first younger brother that afternoon.
I paid him for my half of a beef that had just gone into the butchers.
I paid him for my cow....
Cash Cow... hehehe.  Cash Cow....get it?

Ok, I must have been having a weird day,
'cause both of those struck me as funny!
I wasn't rolling on the floor laughing, but it was close. 
And everytime I thought of either brother or comment,
I was laughing again...
all.  day.  long.
I didn't talk to my little sis that day, 
but I probably should have so I'd have had another laugh. 
It was just that kind of day.

Anyway, QUILTS:
Here are a couple of pics of projects that I have been working on:
It may seem to some* that I am stuck on the 'Lil' Twister
(thanks, *Mary.  I know, fast, fun, fast!).

There was a new panel that came into the shop where I work.  It was bright and pink and girly.  I don't usually do panels as panels, if at all.  If I did get a panel, I would cut it all apart and piece it back together with all kind of blocks around and between and above and below.  But, I needed a girly baby quilt a.s.a.p. and this was the ticket....
especially after I saw some 'lil' Twisters by a quilt shop friend, Helen:  she made blue twisters and then added green applique stems and leaves.
 Inspiration had struck, you know how it is.
I just knew what I would do with one of those panels!

It's not pressed yet, but didn't it turn out cute?  It's so bright & cheery, perfect to fly off to Texas!  And, I got to use the Twister template again!
 Now, back to work, I have kits to make up for the class I am teaching this weekend.
 Thanks for stopping by and
Smiles to you today!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Needed:  strong back.  (that's more than two foot of snow out the back door)
Needed:  big shovel. (that's more than two foot of snow out the front door)
Needed:  one horse.
To pull my sleigh...
Another foot of snow came and visited over night - 
only a few more inches expected today. 
I'm glad I'm working from home!!!
Making up some samples for a class I'm teaching this weekend
at a retreat in south-central Indiana.
That's if I can get to south-central Indiana.
It's only supposed to be a four and a half hour drive.
Another storm front is headed this way for the weekend, so we'll see.

Speaking of driving...Sweetie was involved in a road closure last night.  He sat in his vehicle for over 6 hours on a local interstate!  He had driven north for work, did his job and  headed home.  Clear and dry in northern Ohio.  But as he got to within an hour or so from home it was white out conditions and LOTS of the white stuff on the ground. 
Over 40 cars and semis had spun out and were blocking the highway.  Thankfully no one was seriously injured.  But over six hours sitting in your vehicle with no forward movement, no food, no drink (which was probably good as there was also no bathroom) and intermittent cell phone service--Boring!!!  After enough people realized that they were going no where fast, those that were able started back up the entrance ramp the wrong way and created enough space that Sweetie could do the same.  So, first things first:  bathroom stop, fuel stop, and wind the way home on the back roads.  Back roads that also had a new foot of snow, but at least they were moving!  That was at nine o'clock p.m. by then.  By midnight they had one lane re-opened.  Glad he could make it back up the ramp to use the back roads and didn't wait for the re-opening of the freeway!  Also glad to know he was safe and there were no major injuries. 

So, back to the retreat that I am supposed to be teaching for this weekend...
If I find a horse to pull my sleigh,
how long will it take
with one-horse power
to make a trip
that would normally be
a four and half hour drive by car???
And will I be able to get
all my sewing paraphernalia packed into that sleigh???

Happy snow greetings to you from Ohio 
and hope you get to stitch a little today!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Snowin', blowin'

It's raining, it's pouring
The old man is snoring
He went to bed and he bumped his head
And couldn't get up in the morning. 

It's snowing, it's blowing,
I'm staying in and sewing.
Fabric to cut and fabric to piece,
Another project for showing!

In this picture it's really not dusk, it's white-out conditions.  I waited until it let up a little to take these photos.
Isn't it BeaUUUtiful?

I'm like a kid on days like this.  I wake up early, listening to the radio for news of my school's cancellation, hoping to hear it called.  So I can stay home and play.  Not that I really have many places to go anyway, so it won't change my plans much if school is cancelled.  It's just the anticipation I think...waiting to hear that cancellation!  Like it's going to give me the freedom to do...something.  These pics are from this afternoon.  They didn't close the county schools, just made early dismissals.
I got to come home early from work today...called because of snow, again.  The snow is just dumping down now, roads closed, blowing, drifting, general mayhem across the county.  The county officials are warning they are going to call a level 3 snow emergency -- that's the one where it's emergency vehicles only on the roads.  That's o.k. with me though.  I have all kinds of projects callin' my name!
So, back to sewing and singing.....
It's snowing, it's blowing,
I'm staying in and sewing.
Fabric to cut and fabric to piece,
Another project for showing!

Oh, maybe find the roof rake also....

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Pineapple week wishes

Sorry, gals...
The winner of the Wool Crazy Book/Anniversary give away? 
Betty in MO? 
I was awaiting her response by way of email, as she doesn't have a blog, so I wasn't able to tell her directly that she was the winner!

Well, Betty contacted me, so the book will be winging it's way to Missouri first thing Tuesday morning
(not Monday a.m. because I just realized that tomorrow is a postal holiday!).
Congratulations to Betty - she is a hooker as her hobby - wool hooker that is, and she said she was telling her hooker friends that they should do this Wool Crazy thing together.  Now, she will have the Wool Crazy book and be able to start stitching.

I am sending along a little something extra to "welcome" her to this Wool Craziness addiction.
The pineapple has became a familiar symbolic image of welcome, good cheer, warmth and affection.

I heartily welcome Betty to the Wool Craziness!!! In fact, "Betty, I welcome you with good cheer, warmth and affection and a wool pineapple to stitch onto one of your blocks!

Hope all of you folks had a great weekend and enjoyed your valentines day. 

I cooked a comfort food meal:  meatloaf, baked potatoes, broccoli and some apple dumplings.  Yum to all of that! 
I didn't make any cut-out heart shaped cookies this year, though.  A little too busy, and I'm trying to cut back on white sugar.  Notice I didn't say  eliminate white sugar.  That would be a little too much, cold turkey and such.  But cut-out sugar cookies?  With Butter-Cream/Whipped Ice Cream Frosting?  PURE SUGAR, almost...  so, if they are not here, I won't eat them.  And since it's just sweetie and myself and I made them?  Well, we would have eaten them all, white sugar cut back or not!  At least the apple dumplings had FRUIT in them!  And we had some of the food group Dairy with them - ice cream.  If anyone asks - That's my story and I'm sticking with it!

More snow is a-comin' and it's making me smile.  We did take down the icicles from the back of the house.  They were definitely becoming weapon-like in appearance.

Night, everyone. 
Thanks for stopping by and I hope your week is a pineapple week - filled with good cheer, warmth and affection!

Friday, February 12, 2010

1-ice, 2-comments, 3-WINNER

Ok, girlies....
Three things....
Firstly:  the weather lightened up just a little around here. 
Don't get me wrong, it's still February in Ohio!
And another couple of clippers are a comin' this direction! Yay!
I know the following couple of pictures show a problem with roof/heat loss and possible gutter trouble,
BUT, (and notice that's a BIG but...not to be confused with a big butt!)
I love the look, so I let them "grow" (still not to be confused with a big butt!) 
Check out the "bars" of which I am emprisoned behind:

I am entitling this photo "February Prison" - (no, I am not speaking of my anniversary! - that was romantic and relaxing and a fun day, oh yeah, we also did our taxes! :)...)
Today, I did a self-imposed lock-in behind the icicle wonderfulness:  lots of sewing, some good food, and some quilting finishes which I will share tomorrow.

Thanks so much for all the congratulations on my anniversary-I can't believe that I had over 60 responses! 
It sure has been a fun 32 years, and yes, the years have flown by.  Seems like just yesterday sometimes.  Also seems that I should be able to open those double closet doors today and see the whole closet just filled to bursting with all those blanket gifts!  Wish I had taken a picture of that!  Thanks too, for all the stories shared about your anniversaries and multiple gifts and weather occurances.  It was fun to read about all of our memories, so many similarities, and you added a lot of smiles to my week.  So here's to many, many more years for each of us.

And probably what you are really here for,
The give away for the Wool Crazy Book by JoAnn Mullaly!!!
So many comments, so many names.
I put all the names in a box and shook it around.
I included all the comments from this blog and the comments from the Wool Crazy blog.
Then I had my Sweetie draw one slip of paper.
Just one name. 
He is sure that there was no favoritism, as he admitted he was half asleep when I had him do the drawing!  (He says he was watching the opening ceremonies of the Olympics, but I'm pretty sure his eyes were mostly closed!)
OK, OK, no more stalling!
The winner is...

Betty said... Hi,
I had to laugh about the blankets because in my wedding showers we received TOWELS and lot of them. It was years before we had to buy towels. DH and I are working on our 49th. year.
I would love to have the new book. I have been reading so much about it. I have made several penny rugs and I'm now ready to make a crazy quilt.
Congrats and many more!
Betty in MO.
February 10, 2010 4:58 PM
Yee Haw, Ya hoo, and yippy!!!
Congratulations to Betty in MO!  (Betty, you are a no response blogger, so hopefully you will read this and let me know your postal address by emailing me (You can get my email in my profile) and I will ship a.s.a.p. so, you too, can start this Wool Craziness!!!  I hope you love it as much as I do!  (and yes, if Betty doesn't reply in a timely manner, I will re-draw).
Everyone, congrats on all your anniversaries, and thanks again for all the comments, encouragement, laughs and links.  I think I have visited each and every one of you and thoroughly enjoyed my time!
Now, back to watching the Olympic openings (I have them recording!!).

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Comments now closed!
2/12/10 10:37 p.m.
Winner to be announced shortly
give me an A------A
give me an N------N
give me another N------N
give me an I-------------I
give me a Versary --------Versary.
what's that spell?  Anni - Versary
Say it again-----------Anni - Versary
Say it 32 times.
Ok, you get the picture.
Sweetie and I have been married for 32 years today. 
We married the year of The Blizzard. 
The Ohio Blizzard of the winter of '77-'78.
It started before dawn on Thursday, January 26, 1978: 
heavy snow, winds of 50 to 70 mph.
These conditions, combined with additional heavy snow and blowing of snow already on the ground, caused extreme blizzard conditions all across Ohio. 
Enormous snowdrifts covered cars and houses,
blocked highways and railways, and closed the airports here for two days. 
Because of the blowing, extreme drifting and cold temperatures, 
most of the state was shut down for 5 days.  Really, Shut Down...
I remember there being power losses and food shortages and national guard rescues for stranded motorists.  There was neighboring with folks who had fireplaces, sharing food and warmth. 
Here's a picture of that snowstorm, after the wind had died down.  This picture was pulled from the Marion County Historical Society, but it could have been my road.

Fifteen days after that storm,
sweetie and I were married.
Yes, our wedding pictures involved large snow banks and massive amounts of snow and cars put onto the top of massively large snow banks (thanks, brothers). 
And wedding gifts? 
We received many, many, many blankets. 
Blankets too numerous to count. 
(Only two toasters though.) 
And all of those blankets?  I kept them all. 
How could I have gotten rid of or exchanged something that I would use and that someone picked out especially for us?  And I have to admit that I now have no new blankets to pull from the closet.  I have used them all. 
After 32 years, most of them have been worn thin, recycled or sent on to that big blanket heaven in the sky.  There are still a couple of them left on beds.  And a couple of hand-made ones are in the blanket chest or across the end of the couch or bed. 

Today, Wednesday, February 10th, 
all the county schools are closed, 
the State has issued a level 2 snow emergency,
the wind is howling, the snow is coming down and drifting,
and it is a beautiful winter wonderland for my anniversary!!!
So, in the spirit of the blizzard-like conditions here in Ohio today
AND my 32nd wedding anniversary,
I am having a give-away. 
A little anniversary gift give-away. 
I'd like to say the give-away is a very nice blanket or quilt....
but, are you crazy,
I just told you I don't have any extra blankets just lying around
& I didn't plan far enough in advance to make a quilt for this give-away!!!
What am I giving away, you ask???
I have a copy of......
Wool Crazy, by JoAnn Mullaly!!!

Just leave a comment on this post if you would like this book
and I will do the random draw later this week.
After I have shoveled out and celebrated my anniversary!!!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

home, James

Back from vacation --- Loved the family time, relaxation, fun, laughs, exercise, etc, etc. good to be home. 
Yesterday we drove from New Hampshire, through Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania, and half way through Ohio. 
The big ole' nasty storm that dumped snow across the middle of the U.S. of A, well, it decided to go around our path of travel!  Wasn't that nice of Mother Nature?  Roads were clear and mostly dry. 
The weather that greeted us upon arrival at our home, sweet home?
Everything covered in inches, if not a foot of the white stuff.
Notice the bluebird house?
The bluebirds have stayed around this winter.  There are two pairs of bluebirds that are sharing this house right now - I guess cuddling is good for bluebirds, too.
Also, notice that large pile of snow--a very great brother-in-law came and plowed our drive so we could get up the drive and not have to "hike in"! thanks, b-i-l.

Out the front door:  the suet feeder is empty, so that's on my today to-do-list.

And, out the back door.  It sure is beautiful, isn't it? 
Now, unloading, unpacking, unpiling and laundering.
One of the un-piles is putting all the sewing stuff I took with me back in place in the studio!
Tonight's dinner:  turkey potpie.  I know there is a little turkey and gravy frozen from that gi-normous Thanksgiving bird and it won't take long to roll out a pie crust,  add some mixed vegetables, dump it together and push it into the oven. 
That way, I can stitch a little today, too.
Happy snowy Sunday to you!