Towering Trees

Just finishing off a little project Daphanie started. Notice the sweet fussy cutting she did with “Joy” and “Merry Merry” (you have to look close. it’s in the black fabrics). The only thing left to do was add the very tip top triangle to the tree. Sew it, flip it and close it up.

Finishing wasn’t a problem until the very end. Just slip stitch across the open seam.

Oh sure… it’s reads easy enough but this little part of the project requires gripping and I’m not up to speed with that. I’m not going to make out like this was all wonderful and I overcame and yeah Karen! Let’s just get real.  It was extremely unpleasant.

I about blew my top doing this. The thread got loose, I got a knot which pissed me off and towards the end my thread broke. Argh!!! It hurt my hand. I was pushed to the edge but I kept at it until it was done. Determined.


Do I feel better now that it’s done? Well, yes, I do. It’s adorable and Daphanie would be pleased. She wouldn’t even give me a hard time for getting mad. She’d relate. She was a very real, authentic person.

The Towering Trees pattern came from Material Possession Studios. They’re closed as I read here but it looks like you can get the pattern here. The pattern calls for batting but Daphanie used stabilizer and I think it has a nice feel.

Thanks for visiting! Hope things are right in your world. Peace, *kd.


A Star Revealed

Hey friends! I’m dropping in to share a little something. I’ve had this mountain on my kitchen table for quite some time. It needed sorting and some real physical and mental effort (for my M.S. friends out there, it screamed ‘fatigue’ so I ignored it) but I had some help so the table is cleared off. While digging through the mountain my friend and I struck a little bit of gold!

We came across this project that Daphanie started. This was a great find, a fun moment to share with a girlfriend!!!


I knew I wanted to share with y’all, too, so I went ahead and added the missing one half-melon real quick and snapped a couple pics.  Aren’t the fabrics great? She knew just how to make things sparkle.

Included in the project bag we found everything to make the quilt.


Organized as usual Daphanie had:

  1. the pattern
  2. the foundation master for paper-piecing
  3. the pieces for the entire quilt cut out and
  4. directions for how to paper piece.

She was teaching herself how to paper piece here or refreshing her technique or something like that. This window into what her goals might have been with this quilt is so neat. It’s great knowing everything about a quilt but it’s fun hunting and finding and imagining, too.

So what do you think, do you like it? Would you add it to your list? It’s going on mine. No, I’m not a skilled paper-piecer however, as luck would have it, I did start teaching myself just before my wrist took a turn south. This means it’s not unknown and I’m thinkin’ it goes on the to-do list.

In friendship, *karendianne.


Dog Care


Sagan as a youthful pup.

Today was all about Sagan as he ages at just over 14.  He was just at the vet and doing fine except for arthritis in the knees and something with his breathing but it’s not a huge disease or syndrome thing. He really is doing well.  Although today, I don’t know what was going on today.

He’s paced and paced. Never napped or took a rest. I started paying attention to how long he would rest and I timed it about 3-5 minutes then he was up again. I began watching the clock around 1pm.

At 3:30 I gave him some breathing medication and elder support.You know, rubbed him down quietly. Massaged him as best I could and trimmed around his belly so I could palpate in that area. Nothing for the amateur to notice so that’s good.

It’s just 9pm now.  He’s completely out! He crashed like this around 7:30 and hasn’t stirred. Rest well buddy and I’ll see you in the morning.


Budget Foodie


Okay so it was a pretty good day and this is a foodie post, possibly my first one. Probably I’ll have to make a new category just so I can find this one post. I’m not going all foodie on you though. Mostly this is just about a good day. It could have been anything, but it’s food. And anyway, I don’t know, maybe I’ll have more to share on the food stuff. Who knows? A blogger friend of mine talks about these food posts and how this is grounds for being removed from her reader. It’s a risk. 

So here’s the deal. I had some budget kitchen success. I’m not known for cooking like I know most of y’all are. I’ve seen you. Here, it’s all new to me but I’m showing up, making the effort and it’s working.


What you see is a soup that needs a name because right now it’s simply what it is. Kale, Sweet Potato, Mushroom and Chicken Soup. It’s totally healthy and filling and around 290 calories for 2 cups!

What I did today for the first time was use the broth I saved from the last couple of batches. I don’t normally freeze like that but this time I liked it so much I knew there was potential. We can start a new habit anytime, right?!

Anyway, from the store I added fresh mushrooms, chicken and a container of chicken broth to what I saved. From there I had the flavor set with my frozen broth so I could just use what I had in the house like the kale and the sweet potato so for right around $7.50 I’ve got 4-5 good meals!

The recipe I used for a template is at On My Menu here. Personally I thought this recipe was bland so I added spices that my Dad taught me to use in his chicken soup and diced, fire roasted tomato’s – 1 can. The mushroom’s I played with but cremini are my favorite.

Serving size: 2 cups Calories: 297 Fat: 5g Carbs: 34g Fiber: 5g Sugars: 6g Protein: 31g Sodium: 356mg Cholesterol: 50mg

It was a good day!


Cheddar Cheese and Crackers – Revisited

I was going to save this until I was finished. I’ve been working on it, making those 4 patches I was telling you about for quite some time. Lately, since Lisa has been here helping me to keep the house up, I’ve had more opportunities be creative with this.

I chose this quilt because, well, I love it. I always wanted to make this doll quilt into (see sidebar) full size, even those years ago when we finished it in Lori’s Quilt-along. I never forgot the dream to make it for my bed and then the wrist happened. Yep, the wrist happened and it’s been challenging and a growing experience. I’ve had time to realize now is the time to move those “always wanted to make” quilts from the back of my mind to the forefront. Don’t wait. So I started.  …even if it has been only a little four patch here and there it’s coming along.

It’s working but there have been technical difficulties!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI was disturbed. This photo was take a while back but this is the stage when something was wrong with it, something wasn’t working. After days and days of struggle trying to work out what was wrong, I had some help over (Lisa and her husband – yes, you are seeing a pattern here) doing other things. So doing other things with friends, on that day, getting space from this,  it struck me the cheddar was all wrong. It had too much going on and the type of cheddar was a bit too light, not quite right. The change in cheddar is slight and mostly due to the print I think but in person the first cheddar is lighter than the second one for sure. 

I changed the fabric, right? This is what I was using:


Paula Barnes Companions

and now I’m using this:


Paula Barnes Companions

Where possible I unsewed the blocks and swapped out the cheddar. Where the block was too deep, too sewn into the quilt, I left it alone.

This photo shows the tone of the cheddar a little bit better. You can see it’s a bit darker and I think it improves the quilt.


The block colors were troubling me as well but after I took a couple of photographs of it, walked away then came back with a beer, I decided it’s coming along just fine. Yeah, looking at this photo and I feel like my creativity is possibly working.


A bit of technical info:

  • The little quilt is 1″ finished squares and this one is 2″ finished squares. I’m going to be interested to see how that effects the charm of the quilt.
  • 8″ blocks
  • Directions for the little quilt are in the Summer 2012 issue of Primitive Quilts.

PS: the doll size version of this quilt was made on the design wall so I’m doing that here but at this size, it’s difficult to lay everything out and transition from one section to the next. I don’t think I can explain it but making this bigger isn’t quite easy – that’s all.


Ocean Waves Block

Well, whatcha think? The plan is to have 5 of these for a table runner/wall-hanging layout.


The last time I worked on this was about a month ago. I shared the first section —> here  

Similar to what Julie describes in the ps: section of her post titled Comfort Quilts are Important I’m finding the bits of time add up and it feels (pretty much) just as good as it ever did. Julie’s post was also inspiring because the quilts themselves are beautiful, artistic (because she is) and it isn’t all highly pieced. Something to think about, ya know? I mean, everything doesn’t have to be all intricate patterns.

Make peace with where you’re at.

I’m fortunate to have the help of friends when it comes to the heavier chores so the house doesn’t fall apart. This also puts me in the position to heal. I think it’s working. Oh, I still use the paraffin wax heat, I still use my cast, typing still drags but the days when I’m really hurting are… well I track it so let me see… August 16th. Looks like that was right around the time I made the first section of this block so probably I did too much.

Know yourself, know your limitations.

Haven’t you noticed sometimes it’s a challenge to keep blogging when life adds a plot twist? I sure have but it’s wonderful to know you’re here. So, as always, thank you for visiting and being so supportive, *karendianne.