Tuesday, March 31, 2009


In knitting, when you find you've made a mistake you have to decide if it's something you can live with or not. Sometimes it's no big deal and other times it's something you'd see every time you wear it. Much like that annoying nail hole in the wall that you should have filled in with putty before painting.
Tonight at stitch group I had the unfortunate occurrence of dropping my stitches off the needle tips while I was trying to measure my Hoodie Tunic. It was only then that I realized I had two extra stitches. Not a problem, I thought, I can always use an extra 1/2 inch around!
There were several instances of people reverse knitting, though. This is also known as 'tink'ing (that's 'knit' spelled backwards) and frogging (rip it, rip it). Harriet had ripped back a few inches of her February Lady sweater, Chris unraveled her lacy wrap, and Sally had issues with her Fair Isle sweater. No one wanted to live with their mistakes and since all of their projects were beautiful, they shouldn't.
I work with someone who says making mistakes is okay as you as you don't repeat them. She's not a knitter but I think that her rule works for those of us who are fiber fiends, too.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Hand wash laundry -- you say that like it's a bad thing...

I really don't get the disdain for hand wash items. Nothing turns up some people's noses faster than realizing they have a garment that must be washed in the sink. You know, by hand, and dried -- egad -- flat, instead of a tumbling dryer.
I had a small pile of socks and my vest made from Yarn Hollow's hand dyed bulky wool, sitting on the floor, waiting to be washed. Ok, so they'd been lying there for about 3+ months. I know it's been at least that long since I last wore the vest. Enough already.
So yesterday was the day to do the deed. I put a squirt of Finesse in the bathroom sink, added a bit of cool water, and plunged my cream alpaca socks into the bubbly concoction. Swish, swish, squeeze and set aside so I could wash the next pair of hand-painted wool socks. Same action, set aside. Drain the sink, fill with clear, cool water, first the alpaca, then the wool, squeeze out a bit, and hang carefully using a once in demand skirt hanger.
Next up was the vest. Now since I hadn't blocked the vest I decided to throw a cap full of Synthrapol into the cool water in the sink. The vest bled like a stuffed pig. Again and again, I changed out the water. This is exactly why you don't try to hurry the process along by washing cream alpaca socks and this vest at the same time, even if you could fit each of them into the sink at the same time. This time I rinsed it in cool water then reloaded the sink with cool water and a plop of Pantene conditioner. Swish, swish to dissolve and then plunged the vest into the creamy water. I let it soak for about 10 minutes, rinsed, squeezed a bunch, then rolled it in a towel to speed drying.
Everything came out super soft and ready to wear. Total time spent doing the deed -- maybe 20 minutes. Not a bad investment of time considering the time spent knitting everything. And everything is so soft and smells ready to wear.
Now that really wasn't that painful, was it?

Sunday, March 29, 2009


Each day we face little decisions -- what to wear, eat, go, knit, quilt. But every now and then we face big struggles -- when to give up on marriage, change jobs, send a fledgling child on their way. Giving up on a relative's health -- well that's something you never really want to contemplate. Unfortunately, I'm at that crossroad. My dad is 84 years old and by all accounts has lived at least 8 of his 9 lives, literally. The idea that he's coming to the end of his 9th life is hard to swallow.
He is currently suffering from dementia. Even though he's mostly coherent when I'm around, my Mom has decided it's time for him to move to a memory care facility. Today I stopped by for a Beef Stew dinner and to help my Mom print some pictures from her computer. Dad seemed a bit worn but had no trouble engaging in conversations, even asking how Maggie (my dog) was doing. He commented that the stew would be his last supper, aware that tomorrow they're going to the facility to sign the paperwork to admit him. My Mom quickly retorted that he'd be home for a few more days. The odd thing is I find her repeating herself far more than Dad. How could she not remember that she'd just told me the day before how she explained to him what would be happening? This has been going on for many months yet she fails to appreciate her waning abilities, all too quick to point when Dad falters. My Dad's last words tonight were 'Come visit me.' I'll be there as often as I can Dad.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Black Swamp field trip

Don't let the title fool you -- this was not a journey into some dark, murky pond. Six members of the Black Sheep Knitting Guild headed out this morning to see what the Black Swamp Spinners Guild was all about by attending their 24th annual show in Bowling Green, OH. Judith, Linda (Lu), Coralee, Sharon, Harriet and I drove down to the fairgrounds to get our fill of fiber. We all found great things to buy, another way to help boost the economy. We found loads of yarn available and plenty of raw fleece:

There's nothing like a sea of colorful roving and freshly spun yarn, to brighten up your day. My rug hooking friend, Kris Miller, was vending there along with her husband, Ken. Her business is Spruce Ridge Studios out of Howell, MI and she does beautiful work - both with her hand dyed wool fabrics and the carefully crafted hooked wool rugs. Check out her website for more of her products but here's an example of the work that she does:

and here is some of her scrumptious wool:

Here's our happy little travelers as we headed out the door to our next stop.

Our next stop was Sylvania, OH, where we invaded the Uptown Fibers Shop. The fabulous store, only open since last October, is owned by Jackie Goff and it's filled with an abundance of samples to support the yarns and patterns. Good thing we hadn't exhausted our desire to shop. It would have been a pity to miss this great store.

And here's our group with owner Jackie, holding the Berroco Bramble Bag she's currently working on, using Berroco Peruvia Colors and a Peruvia solid. It's going to be gorgeous!

And with that, we headed for home. Well, sort of. We made a detour to Cantoro's Italian Market in Livonia, to stock up on fresh bread, rolls, cheese, cannoli, cookies, fresh made pastas and sauces, oh, and a few bottles of wine. I had a feast for dinner! After which, I casted on the yarn I purchased at Uptown Fibers to make a felted bag:

It was the perfect day, or so it seemed, until Mom called to say she'll be signing the papers on Monday for Dad to move to the memory care facility near them. That leaves me unbelievably sad................

Friday, March 27, 2009

Spring is here (for now)

I love Spring. There, I said it. There's nothing like the grass greening up, the flowers blooming all over the place, the birds chirping early in the morning, and the smell of rain. Then there's the smell of worms following a nice rain -- ew. I hate walking where the worms are -- I deliberately step around them.
The crocus shot comes from my next door neighbor's yard. Mark and Helen have worked hard on their yard and it shows. Each year they add a little more. They have green thumbs, mine is pale green. As the season progresses I'll take some more snapshots of their gardens. I stopped trying to keep up with them years ago. That's not to say I won't have something to contribute. My roses are often lovely, the bleeding hearts vivid, and my peonies are brilliant. Kevin struggles each year with the lawn. Every year he says he's going to get better results than the year before. Depending on the weather and wayward weeds we get from our negligent neighbor across the street, our results tend to go downhill as the summer progresses. I bought a reel mower several years ago and I love watching him mow the lawn. Now, I did give it a go myself but found I was just too darn short to use the mower. Oh, fiddledeedee.
I'm usually too busy knitting on my front porch to worry about the condition of the lawn. I never let issues like that get in the way of a lovely evening, sitting outside, listening to a Tigers game on the radio, and knitting my heart out.
The reason I said Spring is here (for now) is that we're expecting a snow shower or two in the next few days. Good think I snapped that picture of the crocus. Here's another shot in case they don't survive the weekend.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Chicken Retreat Part Three

I know, I know. How long can this adventure last? But it really came to an end on Monday. It is so much better to come home on a Monday than a Sunday. Makes Sunday much more relaxing.
We started out by stripping beds and having a clean-up breakfast. All packed up and ready to go, Sue and I left around 10:30 AM. Our first stop of the day was Hearts to Holly Quilt shop in Charlevoix. I found some fabric to go with my Floral Parade Quilt (see post below):

And based on Joyce's recommendation I picked up a new quilt marking tool + leads, plus a glue tool, both from Sewline:

Now, I haven't used them yet but I didn't let that stop me from buying. It was a case of simple peer pressure -- 'you NEED this'. Makes me want to get crackin' on some quilting projects.

I also found some great fabric for the stack and whack project we'll be doing at Kathy's next month:

Sue found some great fabrics, too, and some fusible interfacing for making bags, and we were on our way to my sister Denise's for lunch.
Nothing but the best at her home. She and my BIL Mike made a fabulous lunch for us of fresh whitefish, sweet potatoes, fresh spinach and a lentil soup. Add to that a 2001 Sauvignon Blanc from California -- yummo! And for dessert, a wonderful array of fresh baked cookies. All we needed was a nap to make it complete!
From Denise's we headed back into Charlevoix to John Cross Fisheries, where we picked up some fresh whitefish fillets, smoked whitefish sausage, whitefish dip, and Miracle Blend (the world's best seasoning blend) to take back downstate.
We headed down M32 and made a side trip to the Stonehedge Fiber Mill,

where we not only found some fabulous yarn and merino roving, but lots and lots of critters, too.
We shopped in the Yarn Shed:

And then Sue and I visited with the critters:

We saw a crazy goat and chicken:

and a momma sheep who was part Shetland:

and here are her two new lambs, both 2 weeks old. Now don't everybody 'awww' at once:

I don't remember the black sheep's name but the white one is called Milkshake -- isn't she precious??!!
'Mom' didn't have much interest in either one of them nursing:

From there we pretty much headed straight home, stopping only at one rest stop and that same McDonald's from Friday, where we got a quick ice cream cone to go.

It's always great to get away but nice to be back home, sleeping in your own bed.

Almost forgot to post my Hoodie Tunic project pics. Here's what I've knit up so far:

Here's a close up of the increases and the button band:

And here's a pic of the pattern:

And that's the end of this road trip.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Chicken Retreat Part Two

One of the great things about getting away with the girls is the wonderful food that we have. Each of us has an assigned meal to shop, prepare and clean up for and we never go away hungry. The coffee flows and we work individually on the project of our choice.
I finished piecing my backing for Carla's Asian quilt with an interesting twist. I borrowed Deb's Featherweight, a machine I hadn't sewn on in about 35 years when I last used my Mom's, and pressed the fabric using Jackie's fabulously modern Rowenta steam iron. This iron is outstanding -- it puts the steam right where you need it, ON your fabric instead of burning your fingers as you hold open seams. When I need a new iron to replace my Maytag I'll definitely consider the Rowenta. I need to get the Featherweight my Mom gave me out from under a table, dust it off, and see if it runs. Add that to my To-Do list.
I also worked on my Hoodie Tunic, still need to take some pics of that and load the project to my Ravelry projects page. I really like how it's turning out so far.
Carol made her first hat, a chemo cap, and it turned out wonderfully, sorry no pic, but here's a funny picture of the leftover balls of yarn that turned into amazing little flowers:

Sue worked on her February Lady sweater, made from luscious Malabrigo wool:

She also spun some of the roving she had purchased at last month's Spinners Flock sale. Again, sorry no pic of that.

Diane worked with Jackie on her Gammill long-arm machine to get a raffle quilt for Gilda's Club machine quilted.

Here are some pics of the block and bit of the quilting:

And here is the finished quilt (sans binding) as it hung from the loft railing:

It was good to see Kathy feeling so well and finally getting her quilting mojo back. We helped her pick out fabrics from her sizable stash to make blocks that are based on a vintage block, received from one of our guild members who died from breast cancer a couple of years ago.

When Carol wasn't knitting she was busy piecing quilts. Here's a super cute one that was made even better with the addition of Jackie's rick-rack in between the blocks and the border:

Now even though I didn't manage to snap pictures of them, Joyce, Mary, Deb, Pat, and Jackie were all busy with their projects as well. There was even time for Sudoku challenges, exercising to Slim in 6, two mile walks, and Arbonne facials. Note to self -- make sure to get every one's pic!! I'm such a nut.

That's it for now. More tomorrow on the return trip home. Again, never a non-stop ride.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Annual Chicken Retreat -- Day One

It's really only a 4 hour-ish ride up to Torch Lake but last Friday Sue and I left Madison Heights at 6:45 AM and arrived at Jackie's home at 4:30 PM for our annual Chicken retreat. I know what you're thinking -- how in the world did it take nearly 10 hours to get there? Maybe we should change our names to Skipper and Gilligan.
I'll just start by saying I don't get out much. We stopped for gas and then breakfast about an hour later. At McDonald's we had a cranky old lady waiting on us who apparently only knew how to use the scripted lines they had given her and couldn't tell that because we were far back from the counter that we were actually contemplating our order. In the corner of the restaurant was a small group of older gentlemen, sitting with their large pot of decaf coffee, looking like they meet there every morning.
Our next stop was the Icehouse Quilt Shop in Grayling. If you're a quilter wandering around in the northern end of the peninsula you've got to stop there. I think our stitch group members always take the opportunity to see the latest that this great shop has to offer. I found a great book that uses a no-sew technique for Hearts and Gizzards (or Drunkard's Path) blocks. It's called 'Appli-Curves' by Elaine Waldschmitt and found this fabric to use for a quilt:

The middle fabric was a bargain -- 3 yards for $9. A totally different color palette for me but I liked it and built a quilt around it. Sue found some great fabrics, too, and we were on our way to Cedar to Inish Knits. This cute little yarn shop is really in the middle of nowhere but we always find some beautiful yarn and patterns there. Hey Sue -- check out their webpage for Melissa's bio. And while you're surfing here's her blog, which is great.
Next up was a yummy lunch at the Cedar Rustic Inn, just up the street a bit, and conveniently next door to the Longview Winery tasting room........
From there we made our way to Jackie's in Kewadin. But I'm exhausted from the travel talk so I'll have to write more tomorrow...........

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Going away for a few days....

with 8 of my quilting friends. We're heading up to Torch Lake to visit our friend Jackie for the weekend. Some of us will bring quilting projects to work on, others of us will knit. Now the whole point of being in a quilting group is to get some quilting done. I find, however, that I miss too much of the various conversations when I work on a project like that and totally prefer to knit instead.

I'm taking my Hoodie Tunic project with me and expect to get quite a bit done on it. Or at least enough that it looks like I made considerable progress on my long weekend away. I enjoy getting ready to go and have made a list. Only 1 problem -- can't find the list! Ugh. Started all over again, desperately trying to recall all of the little bits that I had on that piece of paper.

My ADD really kicks in when I'm packing. I'm all over the house -- getting toiletries from the bathroom, finding grocery items I'd socked away in the kitchen, digging out my dufflebag, remembering my hostess gift. I also made a batch of Rolo Turtles. Then there's lining up the necessary supplies for my sweater in progress -- I've got 4 balls wound -- should I take more? Yes, no, oh too many choices. "Leave the gun, take the cannoli."

It's not too warm up north just yet. I think our warmest day will be about 50 degrees during the daytime. Have to plan on packing cooler weather clothes, boots, too, in case there's still snow on the ground, as we were warned. It should be delightful to get away and be with friends and nice to be off work for a few days. I doubt I'll be back blogging before Monday. Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Infusing the Fuze with tunes

Tonight's mission was to continue my search for music to sync up to my Fuze MP3 player. Isn't is amazing how your taste in music can change over the decades? Ok, so I guess I must be aging. I looked at some of the CDs and thought 'what they heck was I thinking when I bought this?' Sometimes I bought CDs because I thought the artist was cute, ala Duncan Sheik, who went off into some sort of crazy Buddhist world and his music style went with it. Or the artist was popular, must have, like Celine Dion. No fear, not making its way to the Fuze. I loaded several one-hit wonders like Marvelous 3 (I know, 'who?') and some who had many hits, like Matchbox 20 and Boston. So far I've managed to hit artists from the 1970s forward.

All music can be good to workout to, you just have to have a variety. Next up: Elvis Costello, Beatles, Barenaked Ladies, Sting, and much more. I think I need to incorporate some Motown which is always great to exercise to!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Spring Cleaning

The bug has hit. It was 70+° today and sun filled the sky. Makes me want to clean, scour, and pitch stuff. Ok, maybe that's a bit over the top. Last Sunday I did make a concerted effort to get rid of excess. I started simply -- my bra drawer was so stuffed I could hardly open it. They all came out and remarkable 20 did not go back into the drawer. 12 had never been worn and are destined for Council of the Blind/Salvation Army/Purple Heart -- whoever calls first. The final 8 went into the trash. Next weekend it will be the sock drawer. How many pair of socks does one person really need?? Seems I buy them when they're on sale or I'm 'certain' I need them. Egad!

It's kind of like that with my knitting projects, rug hooking projects, and quilting projects, too for that matter. I couldn't possibly live long enough to finish every project that's either bundled together (pattern, supplies, etc.) or visualized in my head. Although when I think of it, the last time I checked I am supposed to live to the ripe old age of 92.8. That would give me 44.8 years to complete it all. If I never bought another skein of yarn. Or yard of hand-dyed wool. Or fabulous cotton fabric. But think of the joy that would be missing from my life if I never bought another project for the next 44.8 years!

I guess there are just certain things in life I'm not willing to chance.

Monday, March 16, 2009

I knit, therefore I swatch

Gauge, gauge, gauge. You must knit to gauge. I've been felting so much the last few years where you knit loosely on purpose, that I've really found the only way to get a garment to fit is to knit a gauge swatch. I generally have to go down 2 needle sizes to achieve the correct gauge and the Hoodie Tunic I started tonight is no exception.

I began swatching last night, just before before bed, using the recommended size 9 needles. My reasoning was that the yarn was a bit heavier than the pattern called for so maybe, just maybe I could use the size 9 needles. Oh no. I then switched to size 8, still not knitting to 4 stitches to the inch. Have I learned nothing? Now why didn't I just go down to size 7 needles? Tonight I switched to size 7s and voila -- 4 stitches to the inch! It's a beautiful thing.

This sweater is knit from the top down, one of my favorite techniques. It's especially good because you can try it on as you go and make it just the right length. Perfect for someone of my diminutive stature.

I've only got it done to the point where you do a buttonhole so I'll post a picture tomorrow once I've gotten past that point. Plus I'm tired and bedtime is calling me.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Ups and downs...

are part of life. Things are never going to be 100% wonderful. Today is a perfect example.

Sunday is a day to get caught up around the house with cleaning, laundry, just all around tidying up. Things seem to get out of place during the week when free time is always at a premium. Nearly out of dog food for Maggie, I had to scrape out the last remaining crumbs from the food container for her.

With that done I was off to return the webcam to Staples and on to Right off the Sheep to sit and knit with friends. Awaiting me was my birthday present from Kevin, a gift certificate, that I didn't pick up last Sunday because of the quilt prep at my friend Diane's. I didn't have a lick of trouble spending the gift card. I picked out some Cascade 128 Tweed to make the Neck Down Hooded Tunic for Women by Knitting Pure & Simple. I'll try to cast on before I hit the sack tonight and post pics tomorrow.

From there I headed to see my parents and get some felting done using their washer. The felting went well and I was able to help my Mom print some pictures from my nephew's wedding last month. My sister Denise came down from Charlevoix and picked up dinner for us. I would say everything went well. Dad is pretty confused about a lot of things these days but seemed relatively sharp tonight.

The low point of the day was the news that a young lady who went to school with my kids and was part of my daughter's 'inner circle' of friends in school passed away suddenly last night. It's very hard to hear this sort of news and Kevin in particular doesn't handle this type of news well. But actually both of my kids have lost schoolmates, a couple from suicide, and it's hard for them to deal with the loss. My heart aches for her parents and family.

Amazingly enough I managed (with Kevin's help of course) to actually rip a CD to my MP3 player. I'm listening to it now. No snickering, it's the Bee Gees Greatest Hits CD. I grew up loving disco music and danced my silly heart out in the '70s. Actually I love to dance and do it every chance I get. But right now I'm listening to 'Tragedy' which seems so appropriate in light of the news we received today.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Life is good

Well, I never got to working on my taxes today. Not sure about tomorrow either. I was just entirely too busy shopping today, doing my part to help the down-turned economy make a comeback.
I hit the gym at 8 AM but only worked out for an hour. This cranky old man is there on Saturdays and he is vehemently opposed to having the oscillating fans on. Now for a woman my age that is a no brainer. So he adds bad karma to the gym, resulting in a quick workout far, far away from wherever he is on the floor.
After showering I headed over to Ewenique Knits to spend a birthday gift card, burning a hole in my pocket, and found some great Blue Sky Alpaca Hand Dyed Cotton to use on my Imagine sweater, although it's a bit more dusty blue than this pic shows:

Next I was off to check out a new gym, Anytime Fitness, then over to Total Runner, to buy those new running shoes I spoke of yesterday.

What a nice experience at Total Runner. My sales gal was so professional and knowledgeable -- I trusted her recommendation 100%. I wound up with a pair of Mizuno Wave Riders that fit like a dream. Appears I have a high arch and I supronate (walk on the outside edge of my shoes), something that is relatively rare since most people pronate (walk on the inside edge of their shoes) instead. It's a great shoe for resolving both of my issues. I also picked up some new running socks -- MADE IN THE USA -- wooohooo. Here is a pic of the shoes and socks:

The second pair of socks, my Peace socks, are made from corn fiber. I'm eager to try them out to see how they wick, and if there's any difference from my cotton socks.

I picked up a heart monitor watch that I've been considering for a while now. Based on my family's poor history of heart health, I decided it was worthwhile to get my heart in shape and this will make it easy to keep track of. It has several bells and whistles on it so I'll have to add it to my list of new techie things to figure out.

Finally here's a pic of my new MP3 player showing the world that yes, I can actually learn new tricks. Here's my favorite local radio station, Doug FM (WDRQ) which plays songs like an IPod shuffle does -- unlike normal stations that play the same songs over and over again.

Now I did pick up a webcam from Staples but it's going back tomorrow. The same webcam is $40 less on Amazon. Sorry Staples but I can wait on Amazon to deliver for that much of a savings. By then I will have figured out my other new 'toys'.

Now back to those taxes.....................maybe tomorrow.

Friday, March 13, 2009

I've finally joined the 21st Century...

by purchasing an MP3 player. On another journey to Costco tonight I finally broke down and bought myself a Sansa Fuze MP3 player. I have no idea how to use it yet, it's still charging up, but I'm counting on Kevin to show me how to get it going tomorrow. Oh I know, I'll probably pick the most inopportune time and he'll run out of patience with me, but I'll give it a shot. I'm really hoping I can get it charged up in time to take to the gym. Already though, I'm not too keen on the earbuds. I'm usually more comfortable with a headset but I'll see. One of my biggest problems at the gym is I sweat like there's no tomorrow. The earbuds could be a definite problem if they're constantly popping out of my ear.

I won't be traveling to Brighton tomorrow for our monthly rug hooking group since my car-pooling friends have other things to do. Instead my day will be full of errands once I get back from the gym. I'll be looking for:
  1. a new pair of running shoes (don't you always get that Tigger sort of bounce out of new shoes??)
  2. a webcam (suggestions anyone?)
  3. a new camera for blog/website use (more suggestions please??)
  4. a new gym since my membership is up in April
  5. my mind so I can start working on my taxes -- if there's a morsel of energy left
Now working on my taxes is a grueling activity, complicated by that blasted Schedule C. This annual job requires complete and utter silence. Did you hear that Kevin? and Maggie? What should take about an hour inevitably eats up at least six hours. I think the only thing that knocks the wind out of my sails faster than taxes is machine quilting. Now there's a way to clear out the house fast. Navy sailors have nothing on me!

But that brings to mind another task for the weekend and that's pressing Carla's quilt top and seaming the backing so I can take both up to Torch Lake next weekend to be machine quilted by my friend Jackie. I can't wait to see it when it's done. I'll also be pre-packing for the Torch Lake trip. I shopped for wine tonight at Costco and I also picked up a bottle of super tasty Pallini Limoncello (which will not be making the trek up north). My thanks to the Italians for concocting such a delicious 'adult beverage' and my favorite sister for introducing it to me.

Since I didn't get to bed until after midnight last night I better sign off or I'll never make it to the gym by 8 AM tomorrow.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A Quilting Gem

Tonight was the monthly meeting of the Great Lakes Heritage Quilters. Our scheduled speaker had to cancel for health reasons so our president asked a special member of the guild to present a trunk show in her place. We were so fortunate to have Aileen speak because she's a rather shy woman, plus it was remarkable that she gave up watching the Detroit Red Wings game. She's a die-hard fan and doesn't ordinarily miss a game this late in the season.

Aileen has been quilting since 1978 and she brought many of her quilts to share with us. She's a hand-piecer, hand-quilter for most of her quilts, using a floor frame to do her magnificent quilting. She has won many awards including the AQS Gingher Award for Hand Workmanship. Unfortunately for us, she gave that beautiful Baltimore Album quilt to the AQS Museum and kept the prize money! Someday I'll get down to Paducah to see it hanging there.

I snapped a lot of pictures tonight and here are a few of the quilts she brought to share with us:

Close up of the blocks:

Another close up of the blocks:

Some wallhangings:

Here is Aileen's Millenium Quilt (yes, there are 2000 half square triangles!!)

Here's Aileen's latest quilt and a close up of the blocks. Precision piecing and quilting!

Aileen was a real treat tonight after a long day at the office and then the gym. She inspires me to improve with each quilt, no matter how large or small, and to make all the details count.

I better get crackin' on that Terry Clothier Thompson 4 block quilt. But not tonight -- it's past my bedtime!

P.S. I promise to hone my photography skills. Thinking about a new camera....