One of many questions…

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I doubt that any of you have ever had this issue, but for a long time, I have been amazed with the speed at which people complete their “quilts.” I’ve always thought of a quilt as a project that was bed-sized…even if for a baby bed. Yes, I have enjoyed participating in swaps, but actually never thought of those finished pieces as quilts. I have called them “minis”… and not the same, in my opinion.

Keeping track of our finishes is one thing, but finished quilts, another. Well, guess what? I think I will be having a lot more finished QUILTS in 2018 because, since paying more attention, I see that they can be any size!!!! I plan to adopt that thinking.

So, how do you feel about this subject? What do you call a “quilt”?

Here’s to finishing…I’d better run away and work on one! Planning to work on my Caribean Courthouse Steps next…one of my 1Q 2018 FAL items…

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Caribean Courthouse Steps flimsy

 

BTW, what size to you think this one is??? A picture can be very deceiving as to the size of these beauties!

Happy Quilting…and finishing!

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A Perfect Helper in my Sewing Room!

I feel very fortunate to have a wonderful space for my sewing, quilting, and crafting. It brings me joy and I spend as much time there as I can! I was reminded of a handy little extra I use when I read the blog post by Yvonne, @Quilting JetGirl, about her portable design board.

It starts with a tray table…20180110_155742_2

You know, one of those things that our parents had around back in the day, made of metal with wobbly legs! My DH hates the idea of them…oh, unless it is dinner time and he wants to watch football in the tv room! (Another story!)

Note that I use the up and down motion of moving from chair at machine to ironing board and design wall as exercise, but sometimes it is just too much. Little pieces that need to be pressed with every little seam, etc.! So, I tried using this as an extention of my sewing table. I covered it with a pressing mat that is made for a regular table. (I like the side with the measurements marked, but it also has the shiny ironing side.) For starters, I used a simple placemat to iron on. You can make your own with fun fabrics and some batting. The possibilities are endless.

You can see in the pictures above that it sits right beside me in handy reach. Oh and look what else…another one is holding my scraps, as I work!

One more picture shows yet another tray table in use on the OTHER side of me…

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This one works for quick trimming of the little projects I am working on.

So, I may not get as much exercise, but these are sure convenient! I don’t have to keep them up all the time, as they are very portable, so there is much flexibility.

I am surrounded…and loving every minute of it all!

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Thanks for reading! Do you have any handy tips for us?

Happy Quilting!

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Birthdays and Holes

Valorie and Daddy                                                           My daddy and me…1953.

Ninety-three is a ripe old age, but he didn’t make it. He died in 2003 at age seventy-nine, but I think he would say he lived life his way and as well as he could. Can one wish for more?

My father would be celebrating ninety-three years of life today. I miss him. He was many things, but always “daddy” to me. It seems that people either loved him or hated him. It also seems that he felt the same about most people. Does that make him any different than most of us?

I really want to tell his story, but it is like Swiss cheese, or a bucket full of holes, or a cake that I didn’t remember to burst the air out of before baking (this was his favorite kind of cake, heavy, and he taught me to drop the pans flat on the counter so the air bubbles would rise and burst!)…his story all falls to pieces, or just doesn’t fit together in the first place. As it turns out, those holes existed in his heart, and he died with them.

It would be his story to tell, but for the most part, he never did. Yes, we heard some stories…good, bad, and ugly…from his childhood on through his life, but it seems he kept some things secret and it actually has created some holes in my heart now! Those places in my heart are not so much about what he told or didn’t tell, what he did or didn’t do, but about the pain he held inside and how much freer he might have been. If he had shared more, how much would he have been judged? I doubt more than he was judged by some anyway. I know that what I have learned has only made me understand him better. It confirms my feeling that secrets only hurt, sooner or later.

When Harold Watson Smith was born on April 4, 1924 (or so says his birth certificate, though that is another story), he began a life in the hills of West Virginia, outside Charleston. He was the 10th child I have been able to document, with two more brothers to come along after him. He said there were more. I began work on a family tree in 2002 and he was very clear that he didn’t want me to search his line. Being so much like him, he had to have known that to say those words was like throwing a bone for a dog. I would be off on the search. Yes, being stubborn is genetic.

I lived across the country and would continue to call and talk and ask questions. He began to open up, bit by bit, and told me some things. One big item being that he never knew who his father was and that had left a “huge hole in his heart”. I will always remember him telling me that. At any rate, he finally agreed to tell me all he knew when we could sit down together, face to face, and talk. Unfortunately, not too long thereafter, he had a massive heart attack and died. I did get to his bedside before he passed, but was certainly not going to talk genealogy then. He was not able to say much at that point anyway.

So began my journey into his history. I was going to fill that gap that existed for him. I was on a mission, indeed. My mom’s line would have to wait, as I knew those folks already and had some sources for searching. Daddy’s story needed to be discovered. After years of research, and two trips to West Virginia with my sister and brother, I can say I have learned more. And yes, I have found some darkness. It exists in all families, by the way. Now what I wonder is if it is right for me to tell his story. I have shared my suspicions with many. I have had some confirmations and been left with more holes in other places. Personally, as mentioned, I find the information revealing and interesting. But, is it my story to tell? I am ruminating on that. It is part of my heritage, but he didn’t want some things told. He just didn’t tell me what those things were.

So, today, I will say Happy Birthday, Daddy! I love you, I always did, and I miss you.

More of this story to come…sometime…perhaps.

Thursday Doors – September 15, 2016

img_2513© Valorie Webster

I only see one door, so I would guess it is the entrance. Glad they let us know!

Taken somewhere in New Mexico…exploring a bit of the southwest and exploring the possibility of owning an RV. That test passed for me, but failed for my husband!

Happy Trails and Happy Doorscursions…whatever mode of transportation you use!

Thanks goes to Norm for hosting!

Hello Again!

Hey there! It has been a while for me on this blog. I can’t say for sure, retirement life seems to have been in the way of writing over the summer, but I am going to try to return.

It is September and in the fall life starts to settle down a bit…maybe, maybe not!

Sept 1©Valorie Webster

Whatever you have been doing or plan to do, I wish you joy as the weather changes!

 

Thursday Doors -July 7, 2016

I realized that it is Thursday and that I have been saving a picture for Thursday Doors for a long time. I planned to post it on or about July 3, you can guess why from the image. I guess I am not too late and since July 3 was not a Thursday, I am not going to beat myself up!

Located in rural Oregon…

2006 SEPT Kingsley - Dufur trip 002

The old jail, dated July 3, 1918, still stands. No longer used, it is still a reminder that these are not places you want to go!

Thanks to Norm for hosting…check out his and other Thursday Doors Posts!