Project Quilting 8.3 …A Bright Shadow 

This week was a rough one.  The very same day that the challenge was released (texture…something seen outside the sewing room) was the day I drove two hours south to cherish memories of a friend who passed suddenly on Thursday.  Cindy and I were young moms together.  She was the celebrant at my wedding.  She was making “modern” quilts before modern was a thing and she was one of the kindest humans I’ve ever had the gift of knowing. She was beautiful and funny and determined.  She was always able to connect with people and she brought joy into the lives of everyone she met.  She and her family moved when our girls were only in their early grade school years but, on the rare occasions we talked, it was like we’d just seen one another the day before.

When Sarah went to college, not only did Cindy’s oldest, Ashley go to the same college but these two girls who had been friends in their infancy and early years ended up on the same floor of the same dorm. In fact, they were one door away from straight across from one another!

And so, on Sunday, I drove alone the two hours or so to Corvallis and I sat in a church and cherished my friend’s memory and mourned her loss with her family and friends.  And I stared around the church knowing I wanted to use something there for my inspiration.  My eye was drawn to the paneling with it’s gracious swoop and line.  I thought I would do something to echo the lines on the right hand side of the picture but it wasn’t coming together.  I knew I wanted the “shadows” to be bright, not dark because Cindy simply didn’t have any dark in her.  I tried a few variations and then took my original idea and scrapped it.  I kept the wide and narrow feel of the lines but instead of trying for the swoop, I settled for a cross-section.  Then, I used the brightest of pinks to create a shadow.

The strips are from my 2″ strip drawer and I know that at least one of them is from the time Cindy and I met.  I was trying to convey something in this little quilt that I’m not quite sure I captured but I am sure Cindy would be the first to assure me that the effort was more important than the result.  This week, I stretched my creative wings just a tad further…and I could imagine Cindy cheering my on.

If you’d like a peek at Cindy’s quilts, there is a website  Her work is beautiful.

And, now, it’s off to bed with me.  I have an early and long work day tomorrow.

Hug someone today.  Make the overdue phone call.  Tell your kids how awesome it is to have them.  Smile.  And create.


Project Quilting, Challenge 2

This week’s challenge was Carolina Lily and, in all honesty, my heart sank when I read that. It’s a lovely block and all but….so I read again and realized you could use the design as a jumping off point.   So I did.   I drafted the lily flower for paper piecing in a couple different sizes (3″, 2″ and 1.5″) and paper pieced them with scraps.   Here’s the pile I started with 

After paper piecing the flowers, I impromptu pieced them together using the rest of the blue/green scraps I’d pulled.  It was a bit like putting a puzzle together (with the added bonus of being able to change the shapes with my rotary cutter!)

I made a Franken-batt with a few strips of batting trim leftovers put together with a quick zigzag and quilted it on my “new to me” Bernina 440. This was my first try with the stitch regulator so I stuck to what one blogger I admire calls “organic wavy lines. ”

I added a black binding and got done in time for a photo in the snow before our rain started up. 

And here it is…”Mr Monet goes to Carolina.”

We’re all hoping to go back to work tomorrow but my schedule is pretty light this week so I’m hoping to have another finish to share soon!

Happy quilting,


Project Quilting, Season 8

Good morning, Happy New Year, belated Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!  There’s lots to say but it’s 6:30 on a Sunday morning and I can’t sleep for fear I won’t get this posted in time.  Season 8 kicked off with the challenge theme of “8 is Great. ” 

Continuing with my last year’s goals of scrappy, on-hand and small, I knew immediately that I’d  want to use my favorite block of all time which happens to be an eight-pointed star.   So, here’s my entry…more later, I’m going back to bed for a bit. 

Happy quilting!


Snow Day!

One of the many perks of going back into education is the occasional snow day!  I’m sure people on the east coast laugh but it doesn’t take much to shut the Portland metro area down. Here’s my neighborhood this morning. 

The thing about Oregonian snow storms is that we lack equipment like snow plows and we have an unfortunate tendency towards freezing rain and ice. One year, we had six inches of snow covered with more than an inch of ice and another 8 inches of snow!  Of course, that’s ten years or so ago.  

To give you an idea of our inability to cope, it took my husband four hours to make his 25 minute commute yesterday.  Little patches of ice complicate traffic here.  

So here I am with most of a day to play and no where to go except to work tonight. What’s a girl to do?

Here’s my plan…I’m going to finish the patchwork stockings I’m making

Make some potholders and get some quality amazon shopping time in!

Well, and go for a snow walk, build a small snow man and listen to some Christmas music..  hmmm, I think i had better get started! 

Happy snow day!

Happy Mail

It’s with a very grateful heart that I’m enjoying my first two consecutive days off since July!   I got up at 4:30 to get my younger one to school at 5:30 so she could head to Hawaii…yes, I’m jealous, too!  This was the view this morning,

rainy and cold.  I’m sure her view at lunchtime will be dramatically different. Her band will be matching in the Holiday Parade. It should be extra special as we move toward the 75th anniversary of Pearl Harbor.  I can’t wait for photos to start rolling in!

So what else is on the agenda? Well, my brother’s house is torn up so Thanksgiving is at my house. I’ve been cleaning.   I wonder, though, if I know I have a severe dust allergy and I’m cleaning my dusty house. ..does that mean someone should lock me away in my sewing room for my own safety? 

I also took a few minutes to admire these goodies I ordered from Craftsy. The clearance prices were so good, I really couldn’t stop myself!

The last few weeks have been grueling but we are gearing up our seasonal staff at the shop and I have three days off school so there’s light at the end of the tunnel.   Oh, wait, that’s the train!  Seriously, though, I am blessed with all life’s greatest blessing and pray that love and peace (and fabric) will give you much to be thankful for as well. 

Happy Thanksgiving,


Eerie Nights Blog Hop


It’s here!  I’ve been a little swamped (two back-to-back 70+ hour weeks between both jobs) so, once again, I found I have to postpone my big Halloween project. I’m a lot closer than last year but I’m not ready to show it until it is done.  So, what’s a busy girl to do…improvise!  I hijacked a stack of four-patches from the big project and decided to make a small piece.  My original plan was to free/crumb piece a pumpkin similar to Bonnie Hunter’s scrap hearts.  Then I happened to see Bonnie doing strip piecing for pumpkin blocks on her blog.  By luck, the first orange fabrics to come out of the scrap bag were orange strip bits.  Sewn together and given corners, it began to look a little pumpkin-ish.  The green top required a tiny bit of ripping.  I wanted the stem to have those little “feet” but didn’t get the proportions right the first time.

The binding isn’t done yet but all of these pieces, the black, the green and the oranges, came right out of my scraps.  The four-patches are from the other project but I’ve made hundreds for it so they won’t be missed.  Hopefully, the big Halloween will get finished in time for next year!

I’m pretty pleased with this little piece and think I will hang it up in my office at school.

Now, none of this fun would happen without a whole lot of work and support on the part of the fabulous Marian of Seams to be Sew and Amy from Sew Incredibly Crazy.  We have an awesome sponsor, as well, the fabulous Fat Quarter Shop.  You can enter to win a Fat Quarter Gift Certificate by entering here.  

Thanks for hopping by and be sure to “scare” up the time to visit the other hopppers!

Happy quilting!


October 20th
October 21st
October 24th
October 25th
October 26th
October 27th
October 28th

In Loving Memory


Today we gathered to say goodbye to Garrett.  It was a testimony to this wonderful young man that the high school auditorium was nearly full and there was so much food at the potluck that we probably all could have stayed full for days!  Three of Garrett’s friends, Lyle, Kurtis and Jimi gave a beautiful tribute to him and his brother created a beautiful and moving slideshow. His girlfriend, Kayleigh, impressed me so much with her ability to get up and talk about Garrett in the midst of her grief.  It was sad, and moving and wonderful and tragic.  His family had done such a wonderful job of pouring love into this young man and he touched so many hearts in his brief time here.  We are all truly better for having known and loved Garrett and I don’t think you can be more successful in life than that.

I made a signature quilt for the service and I will post photos of that, too, but for now, I just want to share a little bit of Garrett with you.  I hope you will smile, and I hope you will hug someone tight soon and tell them you love them.  Because life is uncertain and we all have to make the most of the time we have.




In loving memory…Garrett Craig Soumokil-Freer, October 8, 1992 – September 4, 2016.

The Road Home from Oregon

It’s my turn!  When the road home was announced, I felt like I was really going out on a limb.  After all, I’m not an experienced designer and I was swimming with some very experienced and talented fish!

When I think of my home here in Oregon, there’s one landscape feature that literally dwarfs the rest of the trees and landscape…Mt. Hood.  Towering over 11,000 feet tall, Mt. Hood is a focal point in our skyline.


I wanted to capture the way Mt. Hood dominates the skyline with an almost perfectly triangular shape.    Windsurfing was also born in Oregon in the view of Mt. Hood so I wanted to show a few little colorful sails on my Columbia River.


Trees of course, are a very Oregon thing and Canadian geese are both a common site and sometimes the cause of a traffic jam or two.  One day, I was on the highway and traffic ahead of me came to a sudden stop.  Nothing moved and there was no sign of an accident.  As I craned my head around to see what was happening, I saw a stately flock of geese walking slowly across the road.  To everyone’s credit, no one honked and we all waited patiently while the little flock safely crossed the highway before beginning our journey again.

So, for my row, I combined all of those elements and pieced my own Mt. Hood row where the mountain dominates the skyline and the geese fly and the windsurfers ride the wind and water of the Columbia Gorge.


My instructions are mostly in photos but feel free to let me know if you find a mistake or have a question.  My row is 12″x 40″ finished but, if you want a shorter row, you could easily take some of the space out between the mountain and the geese to shorten it up a bit. I didn’t use a pure white for the mountain and, if you zoom in very close, you’ll see that the faces of forest creatures are peaking back out at you.

So, there it is, my stop on the road home.  I hope you’ll like it and please be sure to stop over at Marian’s place at Seams to be Sew and enter the giveaway there.  Marian’s done an amazing job at gathering prizes and we have some super generous sponsors!   A little bird told me that Amy of Sew Incredibly Crazy has been hard at work, too. I haven’t given up hope of making a few of my fellow designer’s rows but everything has been pushed back while I work on the memorial signature quilt for our dear friend’s service this Sunday.  I thought of quickly quilting this up but, honestly, I have my heart set on making a whole quilt with rows from the many talented designers who I’ve met On the Road Home.

You can download my pattern here mt-hoodinstructions

And please visit my co-rowers for today!

September 22

I’m going to keep this as a free pattern just to celebrate the fact that I managed to create a pattern!  I may try to get it uploaded to Craftsy eventually and would love your feedback.  Now, since your going to need to leave a comment to enter the rafflecopter maybe you could tell me about a landmark near you…what dominates your skyline?  Or, what doesn’t?  I’d love to know!

One lucky winner will win a Martelli cutting mat and cutter (something I could have used last weekend when I discovered that two of my rotary cutters had gotten wet and rusted, yes rusted…ever used your oven to rescue your cutter?  That’s a story for another day!)  You can enter for this awesome prize by clicking here.



There’s also an Anita Goodman Embroidery Design CD as a prize here.

Thank you for joining me on the Road Home today.  And may your own road home be filled with joy and laughter and may your journey be smooth and your troubles few.

Happy quilting,









The Road Home and the Joy of UFO’s

First, my apologies for being so late to the Road Home Row Along Party.  If you read my last post, you’ll know what kept me and, well, it just is sometimes.

stbs-Road Home tall banner

However, I’m excited to be a “baby designer” amid such a talented bunch of quilters!  This is one of my first few original designs and I’ve had the  privilege to see what my far more talented friends and fellow quilters came up with!  Marian at Seams to be Sew has been busy, busy, busy pulling all this together  with Amy of Sew Incredibly Crazy and the prizes are amazing! (This time I’m going to figure out that silly rafflecopter…I hope!)

September 6


Allie-Oops SweetHappy Life
creates Harrisville, MI Sunrise Coast
Cynthia’s Creating Ark
creates Adelaide South Australia
Kissed Quilts
creates Grand Coulee, Washington
Renee’s Quilting Addiction
creates Alberta, Canada


September 8


Sew Incredibly Crazy
creates Colorado
Quilt in Piece
creates Amanzimtoti, South Africa
3 Patch Crafts
creates Bulgaria
Just Let Me Quilt
creates Las Vegas, Nevada


September 13


Tweety Loves Quilting
creates Edinburgh, UK
creates Heber City/ SLC
Seams To Be Sew
creates Idaho Falls, Idaho
Pine Valley
creates New Zealand


September 15


bdieges designs
creates Road to Tehachapi (CA)
Elizabeth Coughlin Designs
creates Worcester County in Central Massachusetts
Cloth and Paper Studio
creates North Georgia Mountains
Patti’s Patchwork
creates Toronto, Ontario Canada
creates New Milford, Connecticut
September 20


creates Denmark
Heleen Pinkster
creates Netherlands
Seams To Be Sew For Batts In The Attic — date may change
creates Hollywood/LA
Rebecca Mae Designs
creates Northern Maine


September 22


Words & Stitches
creates Beaches of California
Quilt Art
creates Africa
I Can Quilt 2
creates Baltimore, MD
Any Pattern
creates Port Angeles, Washington


September 27


Creatin’ in the Sticks
creates Dodge City, Kansas
MooseStash Quilting
creates Alaska
Patchwork Breeze
creates West Michigan Shoreline
Sue Griffiths Featured At Just Let Me Quilt
creates Northern Rivers Region, NSW, Australia


September 29


Quilted Fabric Art
creates Burlington Vermont
Westend Quilter
creates Manitoulin Island, Canada
Pamela Quilts
creates Oregon
Quilt Fabrication
creates Silicon Valley, CA


October 04


Linda Robertus
creates Netherlands
Elm Street Quilts
creates North Carolina
Sarah Quinn Featured At Seams To Be Sew
creates Outer Space
creates Central New Mexico

October 06


Cheryl LaPlant Featured At Quilt In Piece
creates York, Maine
Miss Loreen’s Schoolhouse
creates New Hampshire
Bumbleberry Stitches
creates Oklahoma
Needle in a Hayes Stack
creates Mojave Desert


October 11
Show N Tell Day
I’ll be back with my UFO story tomorrow…my photo doesn’t want to upload and I don’t have time for 1,000 words tonight!  Happy hopping!





Garrett (left) with Lyle and Sarah is in there somewhere!

Today it has been a week.  A week since our dear friend Garrett experienced a catastrophic brain bleed.  Sometimes, life is just too hard.  And too unfair.  And I’ve had a really tough time trying to figure out how to write this post because it’s impossible to put Garrett into words.  He was funny and Goofy, really Goofy, and he loved his friends and his family and dancing and music and Disney and Pokemon.  He and Sarah became friends when they were in 7th and 8th grade and he was one of Sarah’s “brothers.”  One of the many “big kids” who made Jelly feel loved when she joined our family.  Together, Garrett and Sarah marched in band, ran track, played in the jazz band and created a lifetime of memories and a deeply bonded community of friends.  So deeply bonded that Garrett’s ICU room was probably well over maximum capacity all weekend.  Sarah and another friend flew home. People cried and held one another and shared memories of Garrett as we watched, hoped, lost and kept vigil before he became a real-life superhero by giving the gift of life.  Garrett Soumokil Freer was a bright, talented, funny and engaging bundle of laughter and love and without him our world is darker and sadder.

Later, we will be able to hold onto the joy and the memories will bring comfort but for now we are shattered.