"We write to taste life twice - once in the moment and in introspection."

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Signature Quilts

This past weekend was a productive one for me as far as sewing goes. Saturday was a fasting day, so I didn't have to cook; Sunday after congregational worship and delicious dinner the girls played games with their dad which I opted out of since I'm not much of a game player (I heckle from nearby instead); and Monday we celebrated my and Roo's birthday (we share a birthday) a few days early so I kinda got the day off.

So I made fun use of the extra free time.

A couple of years ago, our pastor asked if we ladies would make wall-hangings of blocks with the church members' names on them. These were to be made annually. Well, being the main quilting person in the church, I was happy to head that up. We actually hand-quilted the first one, but soon it became evident that nobody else was too interested in the making of the wall-hangings, so I'm just doing myself, though I may ask people to participate in tying them (don't want to take as long as the quilted one did). I had in the back of my mind doing some back-tracking and making the two that would represent the two years of our history that were previous to when Pastor suggested the wall-hanging idea. We're just a baby church, agewise and sizewise.

So this weekend, I did the back-tracking. I had also completed the top for 2010 just a week or so ago. The blocks are signed by families, each person being represented. And we believe that God blesses us by giving us children and that He should have control of the womb, so the signature blocks have to be big enough for all the names of those many blessings.

Now to get them tied and bound. Or I might just use the sandwich and turn inside-out method.
But today is music lessons day, so we're off to that.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Resurrection Advent

Last year I posted a little bit about our Easter advent activities, but I'd like to go into a little more detail this year, maybe to inspire you to do likewise or to share some of your ideas.

Twelve days before Easter, we get out our plastic colored eggs and begin to open them. In each one is a little symbol, something that goes with the Scripture we'll be reading, and a slip of paper with a Scripture reference on it. The readings pretty much follow the events of the last week before the crucifixion. I'll list what we have in each egg.

In the first egg (numbered 1 with Sharpie pen) is a tiny bottle to remind us of the bottle of spikenard that was poured out on Jesus' feet and head. The Scripture reference is John 12:1-11.

Egg #2 = paper palm leaf. Bible reading = John 12:12-19
Egg #3 = some grain (I only had rice, so it'll have to do till I can find something else). Bible = John 12:20-30
Egg #4 = needle-felted sheep with toothpick legs. Bible = Exodus 12:3-14 and John 12:31-36.
Egg #5 = small piece of towel. Bible = John 13:1-17
Egg #6 = pieces of dried tortilla (bread). Bible = Luke 22:7-20
Egg #7 = three shiny silver dimes. Bible = Luke 22:3-6 and John 18:1-14
Egg #8 = a paper picture of a rooster (Princess just told me she'll look for a chicken feather or needlefelt a rooster for this). Bible = John 18:15-27
Egg #9 = a crown of thorns, made by a friend who twisted some tiny branches into a ring, and a piece of purple fabric. Bible = John 18:28-19:5
Egg #10 = a cross made by gluing matchsticks across each other. Bible = John 19:6-37
Egg #11 = a little stone. Bible = Matt. 27:57-66
Egg #12 = EMPTY! Bible = Matt. 28:1-8 and John 20:1-31

Along with these readings, we have a wallhanging quilt that we made probably ten years ago by having the four oldest children draw pictures on fabric that depict the Bible readings.

(I have no idea why these are on their sides - they're not that way in my file. Sigh.)

Other ways that we celebrate the resurrection and our salvation through it include fasting on Saturday as a church body and then on Sunday morning, our elders prepare a pancake and egg breakfast supplemented with cinnamon rolls, breads, milk, orange juice, etc. by the rest of us. After worship service we often have my aunt over for dinner or maybe others from church. We don't particularly have traditional Easter foods, just whatever we want to make to celebrate.

We have several favorite books to read during this time also. They include: The Very First Easter by Paul L. Maier, The Easter Story by Carol Heyer and Peter's First Easter by Walter Wangerin Jr., and The Parable of the Lily by Liz Curtis Higgs.

I hope your celebrations are delightful and God-honoring and I

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Two Blocks Finished

As part of our spring cleaning (at least I'm trying to justify it as such), I've been going though fabric scraps - detangling them, ironing them and cutting them into usable pieces. Kinda tedious, but it's greatly improved by listening to Pastor Doug Wilson, et. al., preaching from Christ Church in Moscow, Idaho. We're also watched a few movies, but then my ironing helpers lose interest in the ironing and want to watch the movie. So we haven't made great amounts of progress yet, but I have been able to thin out the unwanted and I did get all the blocks cut for Sweetie's plaid/shirting quilt. And I got two of them sewn up, so I'm off to report in at April Finishing Stitches. Woohooo!
Oops. I'm sideways again.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Big Finish!

I'm soooooo happy to have a very big finish to report for April's Finishing Stitches.

Yes! The music teacher's barter quilt is done!

Unfortunately, as we were water spraying the quilt stencil lines out we discovered that one of the red fabrics had run a little into the white fabric, even though I wash all the fabric I bring into the house. So we're trying bleach stick and it's making some difference. Any ideas would be appreciated. The run is not too bad, but enough that I'm not happy. I am still quite happy with the rest of the quilt and that it is finally done.

Now I'm off to sort and cut scraps to make some kind of order out of chaos. I like how Bonnie Hunter organizes hers, so will be working toward that.

And I get to make some pretty spring playclothes for my girls. I'll show you those when they're done.

Till later, I

Monday, April 4, 2011

Bartering to Learn

What a blessing we had Saturday! Our three oldest girls got to learn how to bake bread from a lady who helps her husband in their brick oven bakery. She taught them how to make a starter, keep it alive and what to do with it from there. They got a whole day-long lesson in the science of it all as well as the art of making the perfect loaf of sturdy and wonderfully tasty whole wheat bread. She gave them a basic recipe and took them through all the steps and told them to make it just as written for about twelve times before they try things like adding cheese or herbs or anything like that though they can sprinkle seeds or herbs on top if they like. She wants them to get real comfortable with how the dough acts and what they should expect. She did teach them how to bake in our own oven though they did have the fun of getting to bake in her big brick oven.

They had such a good time and thanked me for setting that up for them though actually they will be doing the bartering business themselves since they're trading the baking lesson for babysitting her two young children while she works in their bakery.