Favorite Things This Week

As my weeks have become more hectic, there are a few things that have helped through the chaos.  These are my favorite things this week.

Target

Who doesn’t love Target already?  There is one close to house I like to sneak off to and enjoy browsing items for inspiration.  They have a School List Assist feature on their Web site that I used this week.   P is starting Pre-K MONDAY! His school has a generic supply list and Target had it on their site.  I was able to just grab the list and load into my cart, presto!  There are a couple of little items left to pick up, but I’m done.

Did you also see that Target is now offering Lisa Frank pajamas for grown ups?  Just take my money.  I could totally wear this set and snuggle under my Scrappy Unicorn Rainbow Sprinkles quilt.  Rad!

via Target.com

 

 

Health & Fitness

As my mileage has gone up with training, I’m reading a bit more health and fitness related articles.  The topics mostly include making time and motivation.  Talking about making time for exercise is not an easy conversation to have personally.  I am giving up time away from other things I enjoy to help reach this goal.  I’m investing in myself to make this happen.  Transformation Fitness & Wellness had an article on making time this week that hit home.  Read it and tell me your thoughts.

The health coach in me has to agree there is no on or off track, you are just living.  Many people feel one bad thing in the day ruins the whole day and that’s not the case, especially when it comes to diet and exercise.  This quote from the article because I have heard this from many people in coaching.

I was putting so much pressure on myself to be perfectly “healthy” that any slip-up, no matter how small, was seen as failure and I’d consider the whole day a loss, binging on junk food and telling myself I’d just start again fresh the next day. I was either 110% on track or 110% off the rails. ~ Pumps & Iron

We have to treat ourselves better than that.  If that is your mentality, let’s chat about some ways to build your skills in that area.  Check out the post here.  What was your take away?

Sewing & Quilting

Quarter square log cabins are quite trendy right now.  They look like great scrap busters.  Have you made one?  Below are links to a couple of finished quilts posted this week.

Stitched in Color 

Hyacinth Quilt Designs

For myself I plan to start on P’s Halloween quilt.  My beemates made gorgeous Halloween themed blocks and I just need to make a few more to complete the top.  If time allows over the weekend, maybe even a tutorial on my improv scrappy blocks from the quilt above.

How to SAG for the RAIN Ride

Help your rider be successful with good preparation.  They are logging the miles, but you help them get there.  This is not an official post or sponsored in any way.  May contain affiliate links.

SAG, PSV, or whatever you want to call it is essential to help a rider complete a LONG ride.  How long?  Let’s start with the RAIN Ride.  160 miles across Indiana in one day.  Sound exhausting?  It is, but also fun.  My super, wonderful, and amazing husband tackled and completed the RAIN Ride on Saturday.  I had never been a SAG vehicle before and learned quite a bit.  SAG, let’s just call it stuff and gear because that’s exactly what you are for the rider.  I documented most of the day on InstaStories, Instagram, and Facebook for family and friends to keep up with.  It was a motivator for to hear others cheering him on, we weren’t doing this alone.  Did I mention hubby hates having his picture taken?

 

 

Gear and mechanical essentials

Your rider should have a few items on them in case of a flat or other mechanical issues.  Make sure they pack anything they will need for a complicated issue in your vehicle.  Hubby shopped at Performance Bike for his essentials.

Be ready to be bored

  • Bring a book, crossword, etc
  • Download podcasts for when the radio has all crappy stations
  • Bring a project to work on by hand
  • Keep your phone charged

Overpack

It’s okay to over pack.  I don’t think you really can over pack for this type of ride.
  • Ibuprofen
  • Allegra or allergy meds
  • Sinus decongestant
  • Sunscreen
  • Pepto
  • Towels
  • Foam roller
  • Yoga mat
  • Quilt
  • Baby wipes
  • Anti bacterial hand wipes

Learn how to make decent Gatorade

The mix is imperative.  Too dilute and he’s not going to feel as great.  Too much and he can’t drink it.

Stop and enjoy the hidden gems

I drove all over Indiana’s back roads.  In between pit stops I had time to stop here and there.

Things for next time

While we were pretty prepared for this race, there are a few things I will do differently next time he does a race of this magnitude.  I would get cash before the ride to have just in case.  We needed cash for the bike mechanic that helped repair my husband’s tire at Pit Stop 1.  Have pickle juice available for him in the car.  Sounds gross but the shot of sodium is helpful when riding.  Baskets would be helpful.  I saw one family had a tool box set up and I was envious.  We just threw stuff together and didn’t really organize.  Next time I’m bringing baskets to organize his snacks and backup gear.  Also I want to leave room to have the bike rack off the back of the car and access via the trunk or hatch.

I was able to meet some nice spouses and friends that were also playing SAG for the day.  It was fun to meet up with them at the rest stops and hear how their rider was doing.

Congrats again to my husband that accomplished this feat despite some big set backs in the first 5-10 miles.  I kept checking on him at rest stops since he expended lots of energy at the beginning, I wasn’t sure he would complete all 160 miles.  Once he got over 100, he was determined and didn’t want to stop unless he couldn’t make his legs go anymore.  That determination was awe-inspiring.  I cried when he crossed the finish line, this is a huge accomplishment.


Other Cycling and Fitness Endeavours at our house.

New Running Goal – A Sub 2 Half

Can’t believe I actually wrote that title and putting this out there publicly.  I am so proud of my husband for achieving one of his fitness goals (more on that later this week) this year that it’s motivated me to aim for a big stretch goal.  Over the years I have ran a number of half marathons.  Truthfully, I haven’t really put the effort in for training.  I’ve come close with a 2:14.

This is the time I need to focus on my training and reach this goal.  I have used the above quote many times during trainings for races.  However, I did sacrifice and not give my best.  Slept in on Saturday mornings, half asses a speed workout, skipped a mid week run, and generally didn’t prepare myself.  Sure I can run a half this weekend if I wanted to, but it would be an ugly performance.  Why not set myself up for success and reach my goal.

I want to be at or below the two hour mark.  Aiming for this goal will force me into more speed work, yoga, and long runs.  Hubby and I have worked out a plan to help make this happen.  We discussed the pros and cons of moving my runs to the early morning to avoid Indiana heat.  We decided that isn’t a realistic step for a couple of reasons.  First, I would have to go to bed basically after P in order to make a 5:30 am run part of my morning.  Second, I decided I enjoy the down time in the evening with hubby and I don’t want to give that up.  Third, well it’s easy to oversleep and just say I will do it later!

In an effort to plan to get myself into the mindset of running a sub 2 half I put a couple of things in motion this week:

  • Downloaded a training plan designed to help achieve the goal.
  • Scheduling in yoga on Monday, Wednesday and Friday to help with core strength and stretching.
  • Researching new shoes.  My current shoes won’t last into the training.

I start today and plan to run the Monumental Half Marathon on November 4th.  Not sure how this will impact my sewing time at this point.  However, many of my ideas come while running.  Maybe I will create an amazing idea while I run.  It is my other form of stress/life management.

Any tips or support is greatly appreciated.

 

Scrappy Unicorn Rainbow Sprinkles Finished

Scrappy unicorn rainbow sprinkles by quiltytherapy #scrapquilt #paperpiecing #modernquilt

Scrappy Unicorn Rainbow Sprinkles is finished and ready for her next adventure.  It would be great if this quilt left a trail of rainbow sprinkles everywhere it went.  Instead it just brings lots of color and brightness to a room.

Scrappy unicorn rainbow sprinkles by quiltytherapy #scrapquilt #paperpiecing #modernquilt

It was fun to watch scraps from friends become something cohesive and lovely.  Thank you again Lisa, Erika, and Lindsay for sharing your scraps.  I would love to hear your thoughts below on the quilt and any of your scraps you recognize.

When it came time to pick the backing on this quilt, I was sure I was going to make a scrappy one to flow with the front.  I wondered if I would have a vintage sheet that would work and began digging into that stash.  I did find a sheet that could have worked if the blue was a little more aqua.  While the vintage sheet would have worked, it didn’t feel right.  I would have wanted to change it after quilting it.  Instead I found this solid green sheet that coordinated with the greens on the front.

Remember the purple polka dot binding from Thistle Storm?  I had so much of it left that it ended up being enough to bind this quilt.  Everything on this quilt is either a scrap or stash item I had not used in awhile.  Feels good to finally give some of these fabrics a new purpose and use.

Scrappy unicorn rainbow sprinkles by quiltytherapy #scrapquilt #paperpiecing #modernquilt

As I finished the quilt top, I realized there were a few errors that I hoped to work out in the quilting.  One or two were too big to ultimately just quilt closed.  I had to go back and zig zag stitch over them.  While it’s disappointing that this quilt isn’t perfect, it now has it’s own flare and design elements.  After my IMQG meeting they couldn’t really see the issue.  If a group of quilters can’t see it, then there is no use in stressing over it.

For the quilting, I went with wavy lines again.  It’s a simple method that I want to keep building my skills on.  The waves add a softness to the overall look.

Look at all the crinkles post wash.  I want to take it on a picnic or snuggle under it on the couch.  If you’re looking for a quilt to add color to a room, you can find this quilt here on Etsy.

Scrappy unicorn rainbow sprinkles by quiltytherapy #scrapquilt #paperpiecing #modernquilt

 

You can read about the process of the quilt below.

Scrappy Unicorn Rainbow Sprinkles 


Linking up with

Needle and Thread Thursday

 

Scrappy Unicorn Rainbow Sprinkles

Prepare yourself for some color.  My inner 90’s child just wanted to bust out my Lisa Frank stickers and Trapper Keeper when I started these blocks.  In all transparency, I do have a Lisa Frank calendar on my desk at work to look at and enjoy.  You’re not here about obnoxious desk decor, you’re here for the fabric and blocks.

I hit the mother load of scraps during our Indy Modern Quilt Guild Winter Retreat.  Lisa and Erika were gracious enough to just let us go through their scraps.  Take whatever you want.  Lindsay Conner was working on blocks and was just tossing the left over half square triangles away.  I knew they would could be reused in a scrappy project.

I like big blocks and I cannot lie… #imqgretreat

A post shared by Lindsay Conner (@lindsaysews) on

There were so many from her 12 blocks, plus all the other scraps that an idea came to life.  I had 7″ squares left over from finishing the solids string quilt.  Let’s make a scrappy quilt that looks like rainbow sprinkles.  YES!!!

fabric sorted and ready

Sorting through the scraps again was more fun.  I had an idea in mind and could start seeing the palette emerge.  Orange, green, teal, aqua, purple, pink, white and of course gray.  The mix plays so well together.  I made a couple of test blocks to get started.

They felt right so I kept going, unsure how many I would make.

Around 15 blocks I started to get a little bored.  The blocks seemed to be repeating themselves, though each one is different.  I made a few more and decided to test a layout.  Maybe that would be the catalyst forward or the stopping point.

A couple of design options started to flow.  Keep going until there are 42-56 blocks completed for a totally scrappy quilt.  Egh, I wasn’t really feeling the work involved.  The blocks didn’t take long to make.  I was running out the yellow and orange scraps.  Second idea was to add six more blocks and get to 25.  Maybe put them on point and surround with a solid.  White?  Gray?  I remembered a bolt of Kona Robin’s Egg Blue I had in the back room.

The color coordinated well with the blocks and I had lots of it on hand.  New plan was to finish the next six blocks and then finalize a layout.  The last six blocks took forever, I couldn’t seem to get them finished.  Final block count of 25 was all I had in me for this project.  It was enough scrapiness and it left options for negative space.

During an open sew day for an IMQG meeting, I was able to get the blocks sewn together and start ripping off the papers.  Ripping off the paper when paper piecing is annoying, but soothing at the same time.  I even found a few errors that was too late to really fix.  Did you see this gem on Instagram?

Some inappropriate words were said, but I knew I could fix it later.  I added big borders to the top and called it a day.

As the top was being pieced I just kept thinking about rainbow sprinkles.  That’s what the blocks looked like to me.  With the half square triangle in the center, I was thinking unicorns.  So the name, Scrappy Unicorn Rainbow Sprinkles, was given to this quilt.  I think it’s perfect and I’m crushing on this quilt pretty hard.  Not quite New Kids on the Block level, but close. Enjoy!

Do you have a favorite 90’s song I can jam to while quilting this over the weekend?  Leave your suggestion in the comments.


Linking up with Oh Scrap! & I May Have a Scrap Problem

Quilting is more fun than Housework

Confessions Of A Fabric Addict

 

Meet Thistle Storm

You have seen this quilt before called April Showers.

 

The quilt came out of the dryer and demanded a new, more fierce name.  Thistle Storm was born and so did our adventures together.

 

P enjoys the quilt

In typical quilt blog fashion, I put Thistle Storm on the fence out back.  She, yes it’s a girl quilt, started laughing.  It was more of a mocking.  “Really?” she said, “Just the fence.  Come on. I deserve way better photos than this.”  “Fine,” I replied and began scouting locations.

My husband works at a beautiful old estate turned event venue here in Indy.  Maybe their grounds would have some good photo opportunities.  We ventured over on a Friday afternoon and started with a normal quilt photo.  Thanks hubby for holding it up.  We walked along a pathway, but Thistle Storm became tired and wanted to rest on the bench.

After a brief rest she noticed the brook ahead and wanted to climb on the rocks.  “Does this bush make me look fabulous?,” she asked.  “It’s not your best pose, but we can make it work,” I replied.

We finished our photoshoot on these lovely brick stairs.  She stretched out and enjoyed the sun for a few minutes.  “I could just lay here all day and watch the clouds,” she noted.  This is my favorite pose from the session.  Once we were done she bunched herself up and rode home in the front seat.  She was excited to see her photos.

Photo editing would have to wait until after my run.  Thistle Storm is the laziest quilt around.  She laid on the couch binge watching The Great British Bake Off on Netflix as I was sweating my ass off.  She shrieked in horror when we pulled up to daycare to pick up P.  “Please don’t let sticky fingers get on me,” she pleaded.  P was unimpressed with her antics.

Since this quilt is so lazy, she needs to find a new home.  Below is a bit more about the specifics on the Thistle Storm and how she can come stay at your house.

Quilt Layout

Kona Thistle is the light purple feature.  Notice the detail in the purple floral print?  It also has thistles which is no coincidence.  In an ah-ha moment at the quilt shop I knew it felt right.  I adore the purple to gray transition, a different version of Icy Waters from what I have seen.

Backing

I used leftover yardage for the backing to create something pieced and scrappy.

Quilting

Why did I wait so long to quilt this?  I was scared of making waves and that it would look terrible.  After trying one, it wasn’t horrible.  The rest turned out well.  There are a couple of hiccups in the quilting, but I’m okay with that.  Wavy lines may become a new go to for me.

Binding

White and lavender polka dots had been in stash for years, YEARS!  As I was piecing the top, I remembered this print buried in my fabric cart.  Rather than the 1.5 inch strips I normally use, I cut this at 2.5 inches.  It was therapeutic to press yards of binding.  There is some left over and now I need something to bind in this great print.

Of course I went with machine binding.

You find the quilt on Etsy and is ready to head to a new home.