Saturday, December 10, 2011

Joplin Quilts Done and Delivered!

I think I posted about my stitch group's Joplin Quilt Project some time ago, but in case I didn't, here's the story in a nutshell:

After the terrible tornado struck Joplin, Missouri back in May of this year I just felt helpless as to what to do to help.  Over 150 people lost their lives and hundreds of people lost their homes.  My friend Leslie and I decided to help just one person and thought it might be good to make a quilt for a teenage girl.  I contacted a friend of ours, Sheryl whose children and grandchildren live in Joplin.  Her daughter Rene' knew of a family who had lost their home and there was a teenager in this family so we got busy and started making the quilt.

Through a few conversations with our friend we soon found out that the girl had 8 siblings.  We enlisted the help of our stitch group (there are a total of 7 of us).  They got excited about the project and we decided we could make a quilt for all 9 of these kids and their parents.  We asked for help from our guild ( and even posted about the project on Facebook.  We soon had donations of batting, fabric, quilting services and money to get the tops quilted. (You all know who you are and we thank you from the bottoms of our hearts!)

To make a long story short (I know--it's too late for that!)  on Thursday we delivered all 10 quilts to Joplin and got to meet everyone except the youngest child and the dad.  Joplin is less than 2 hours from us.  We had a fun filled day and one that we'll remember for a long time!

First I'll show you the pictures of the quilts and then I'll show you pictures of the quilts in the hands of the recipients. 

This is the one that started it all.  Leslie and I used a split nine patch pattern for this one.

Lots of 5 inch charms.  All we did was offset the rows.

This one was LOADS of fun!  Each of us brought black and white leftovers from other quilts.  The pops of color completed it.

One of our members, Coleen,  found this top at a yard sale.  So sad that someone was getting rid of such a beautiful work of art.  We added a border to it and just knew that Mr. and Mr. Joplin would love it!

This was four blocks that June had started.  We got busy and made more blocks.  Then the bandana print border just made it!

My friend Cindy of Reno, Nevada heard about the project and just had to get involved.  She quilted it on her new long arm machine.  Don't you love it?!

One of our quilt guild memebers donated this top.  All we had to do was add the borders and get it quilted.
(Thanks Phyllis and Kat!)

Another one started by June.  We split the "jelly roll" strips and added the applique and borders.

Judy is one of our members who spends her summers away from the heat of Oklahoma in beautiful Colorado.  When she heard about the project she enlisted the help of her quilt group out there and came up with this.  Beautiful!

It was my job to keep this project organized.  Unfortunately, I'm not always good at organization.  When I miscounted and found out I needed another quilt, our friend Lynessa stepped up to the plate.  She had this top finished.  When I told her I needed it right away, she quilted it, bound it and had it my hands in less than a week! on to the good part.  The oldest of the kids is taking college courses in addition to her high school work.  So we met her at the college to give her her quilt.  Then we went on to our contact's house (Rene', daughter of our friend Sheryl here in Tulsa) where each of the other kids got their quilts.

This is Korina reading the label on hers.

Here are that five of us who got to go to Joplin pictued with Korina and her quilt.  Sadly, Coleen and Judy didn't get to go but they were with us in spirit.  Left to right:  Emma, June, Korina, Leslie, me and Donna.

Ethan ripping his bag open.  Brothers Liam and Kayden lined up behind him waiting patiently.

Sorry about all the red eyes!

Here's Liam...

And here's Kayden.

Desirae  ( a little out of order--we gave them the quilts from youngest to oldest, but my computer skills are just not there!  The pictures keep skipping into places I DID NOT PUT THEM!)


Damen.....Such a sweet smile!

Alyssa captioning has gone haywire so I'll just tell you about the rest of the pictures.
After Alyssa are Rene' and Monica (the mom) looking at the quilt for the youngest child, Selah.
Then, Monica and 7 of her kids with the quilt we made for Monica and her husband Tim.

The group picture was taken in front of Rene's house and includes some of her kids, too.

The rest of the day was filled with lunch at the Red Onion, a visit to Bittersweet Quilt Shop and Candy House Gourmet Chocolates (YUM!)

We were so blessed to be a part of this project for this family in Joplin.  They are all so sweet and it was our great pleasure to get to meet them.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Bottom Border Finished...well almost

Here's the bottom border for my applique quilt.  (Flower Garden by Kim McLean).  I didn't care for the top and bottom borders in the pattern so I designed my own using the flowers and leaves that were elswhere in the pattern.  The vines will spill over into the side borders when it's all put together.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Hang It, Dang It

I had such success using the "Hang It, Dang It" system to hang my wallhanging that we AT LAST got this quilt hung on our bedroom wall.  Seriously, the rod is hanging on ONE NAIL and it's not even in a stud.  I'm quite pleased with the ease of it and how good the quilt looks hanging up.

It's 73" x 80".

Monday, November 28, 2011

Back to sewing

Between all the sickness and finally having our Thanksgiving meal, I got back to the sewing room.  I've dreaded putting my applique blocks together for some reason, but once I got into the swing of things, I'm enjoying it.  Here's the first row:

The sashing is 1" (finished) squares.  All strip pieced.

....and since I'm on the subject of flowers:

My Christmas cactus bloomed for Thanksgiving.  It's never had this many blooms before.  Mom always had one and we would talk about it on the phone.  Hers always bloomed.
I gave my mom a basket of miniature rose bushes for Mother's Day in 2009.  It turned out to be her last Mother's Day on earth.  She transplanted them into pots and when she passed away, I took them and planted them in my flower bed 300 miles away. They're always SO beautiful but this year has been exceptional.  I guess they've liked our extreme Oklahoma  weather.  They're still blooming even though we've had several frosts.  They're a nice reminder of Mom and what a wonderful person she was!

Friday, November 25, 2011


Yes!  We DID have Thanksgiving today!  A day late, but everyone was well. We're SO thankful for our family.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

I wanted to take the time to say Happy Thanksgiving to all of you in blogland.  May you have the blessings of family close to you and take time to thank God for all He has given you.

We're postponing the actual day of the get-together due to a stomach virus that has been "running" (literally) through my family.  We all got together last Friday night to pack boxes for Operation Christmas Child.  My youngest grandson (who has tummy troubles all the time that are currently being diagnosed) apparantly had a virus.  I couldn't resist kissing his precious little face (or maybe lips....yes, probably lips).

He got worse.  By Sunday I was VERY sick.  His dad was VERY sick.  By Sunday night his brother Timothy was sick.  On Monday night his Auntie Dre got it.  It only lasts about 24 hours but leaves you "wiped" out (Pun intended) with no energy or appetite.  Today is the first day that food really sounded good to me.  So after5 days of cleaning up after 2 sick kids and a sick husband, my other daughter came down with it tonight.  And did I mention that my son had it, too?

That only leaves husband, other son-in-law and oldest grandson who haven't had it.  So we're going to wait a day and see what happens.  So in everything I'm (trying) to give thanks.  I'm thankful that my Operation Christmas Child party fell through last Friday night and that the only people who showed up were my family.  Otherwise, all of my guests would now be sick for Thanksgiving.

I have SOOOO many things to be thankful for!  As my son said tonight when I asked him if he minded postponing the day "It's the people, not the day"!  Happy Thanksgiving to all you people who help round out my life!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Preparing for Thanksgiving

This week I've cleaned out three cabinets, two piles of clutter, one freezer, the junk drawer, did some mending, cleaned the oven and survived two earthquakes.  (Well, the survival part wasn't THAT hard, although they did really shake our house and scare the @*#% out of me).

And I FINISHED the LAST block of my hand applique project.  That's 24!  Done!  I've started the bottom border and have it halfway finished, but the borders are going to take a long time.

My last appliqued quilt has been sitting around since the fair.  Today I put a hanging sleeve on the back of it and hung it using the "Hang It Dang It" method.
I was able to hang it all by myself and was quite impressed with it.  I saw it demonstrated at the Houston Quilt Show last year and ordered through my local quilt shop (Cotton Patch).

Here it is hanging on my bedroom wall.  It's level even though the picture may not convey that.

Amid all the things that I'm doing this week to get ready for having company for Thanksgiving, I looked out the window and noticed this:  (It seemed to have happened overnight)

And this: 

We've had a few frosts already, but the roses are still blooming.  Despite the terrible drought we've had this summer, the trees around Tulsa are beautiful.  The local weatherman says it's because of a few late rains that added sugar back into the trees.  Whatever the reason, I'm glad.
 So....with all the busy-ness that we'll all be having the next few weeks, take time to smell the roses...or to look at the trees.  There is beauty all around us!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

I've been away

Wow!  Does time ever fly by!  Tim and I took a 10 day vacation to the beautiful hill country of Texas.  We stayed in a lovely house on a golf course (no, we don't play golf).  And did I mention that we took my bff and her hubby with us?  Yes, Leslie and I bid on the use of this house at a Little Lighthouse Fundrasier last April.  The Little Lighthouse is a school here in Tulsa for children with disabilities.  It's operated through donations and support of the community.  It's a wonderful, wonderful school and many children have made amazing progress there.  So....anyway a generous man owns this house in Kerville, TX and donates the use of it to several worthy causes.  We bid on it and we won!  So that's how we ended up in Kerville, TX.

Our husbands really needed a vacation so we didn't really plan any activities that were set in stone.  We ate a lot...we watched the World Series (Yeahhhhh Cardinals!!!!  I'm a Missouri gal, by birth!)...Leslie and I stitched...the guys played a bit of pool...we got pulled over twice for speeding (umm...I'm not saying who was driving, but no tickets were issued)....and in general we had a great time.  Oh I forgot!!! Leslie and I visited at least 6 quilt shops.  We had to ban our husbands from going in them after a while because they caused too much of a commotion.  When we went outside to check on them we discovered that they were sitting in front of the door demanding beer or a dollar from anyone who tried to enter.  Don't know if we're welcome back there.  haha

Here we are on a walk along the Guadelupe River in Kerville.

Always the rebel...the sign says "Keep off Dam".  Guess where he is.

This is also on the Guadelupe when we took the scenic drive into the hills.

This is at the James Avery Craftsman "compound" in Kerville where Tim bought me something shiny for my birthday.

Did I mention that I had my birthday while we were gone?  Leslie baked me this lovely angel food cake.  Yum.

On our scenic drive we had to stop at this little hole in the wall place.  Not only did they have the "Best Dang Jerky in Texas", they also had one of the best barbeque brisket sandwiches I've ever had....

...and since Tim is the slowest eater in Texas (or anywhere else) he got to finish his sandwich with a Peacock.  Weird place.

Here we are working on our applique projects.

This is the entry way to the house that we stayed in.

Bff's in Texas

This is in Fredricksburg.  There were more pies than quilts.  The guys were touring the WWII museum.  We tried to get some German food in Fredricksburg, but all the restaurants shut down.  We think there was a city water problem...but more than likely it was just the Marler luck.  It just happens that way.

This was a great quilt shop in Bandera, TX (not so great picture).  We left the guys without a car to fend for themselves that day.  They managed to walk over to the country club for lunch.
Here are a couple of things I've mangaged to finish lately.  I'm working on the border of my applique quilt now but still have the last block to make. 

This is the 23rd of 24.  Almost there!

This table runner idea came from Nancy Halverson's new book.  I made it to fit a table that's been in our family since 1990.  Calista has it in her new house.  Is that a little giraffe standing beside her?

Close up of the quilting.  I appliqued  and quilted it at the same time.

No early November post would be complete without pictures of my favorite "Halloweeners". 
This is Timothy the famous Jedi.

 Ninja Gabe

And there's that giraffe again.

Now on to the rest of the holidays.  Thanksgiving and Christmas will be here before I know it.  Time to get busy!