Thursday, March 31, 2011


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Liberty Quilt

So I fall into the normal trap of many quilters. I sometimes make my quilt top but then I might take a very long time to get the quilt actually quilted and put the binding on. This is the case with today's finished UFO (UnFinished Object). I love this quilt. I have already placed it in the living room on the wall. We are a very patriotic family and my friend Des made these beautiful blocks. It took me a while to find the exact backing and border fabric I wanted for them. I found that last summer, or about this time last year. Then when I made those lovely mother quilts for my friend I had purchased this perfect red fabric which I used to bind this quilt. It is very bright and cheerful. It is EXACTLY what I was waiting for. So one more down, a few more to go. I guess that is the benefit of not having any quilt orders, I can finish some of these UFO's.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:4-7
On March 7th I received several bags of clothing from a friend at school, her mom had just recently passed and she was wanting 5 quilts from me. I sought the Lord in prayer and wrote this blog post
Since I have the same recent loss, I knew in my heart the pain, the longing and the comfort that is all wrapped into a request like this. The pain in letting go of the clothing to become a quilt, the longing for a mother no longer here on earth, even if we will see her one day again and the comfort that a quilt can provide. Recently it seems the Lord has provided comfort to some through the work of my hands. I love that He uses me to create these gifts. This time it meant so much to me because I personally knew the children and the mother that these quilts would belong to. 
I am so thankful this week that three weeks later all the orders have been finished and I feel like each quilt is special in its' own creative right. I tried to think of each receipent and what that quilt might mean to that individual. Tonight I finished an extra special order, one that would have made my own mother so proud. I feel like the Lord knew a few months ago that I would have this quilt order because the backing to the quilt has been in my home for a few months now. I have been searching for more flannel just like it to make curtains out of it for my room. However, this morning I knew that was not the creation it was intended for. It was for this quilt. 
You see I had 12 blocks that still needed a home in another quilt. The rag quilt that I made is very heavy and honestly I doubt it would be used at all in the summer. I wanted a quilt that would be light and would be fitting for those days when "mom just sneaks into your mind". She had chose this black and white polka dot fabric for her daughters, I had saw this really pretty red for the binding to match the backing she chose for them, see it worked perfectly with this backing I had on hand, so I just dug in today and came out with a wonderful "not asked for" quilt. 
I admit that I have a heart for giving. People really reach my heart and soul and in this case its very true. I feel the Lord provided me with a talent and that I can find times like this to use it to give them somethign to wrap themselves in, so that through this quilt her mother and the Lord can provide her with comfort and memories. 
I pray that come Friday when I give this quilt that it will do just that. I rejoice in the fact that one day we will both see our mothers again. I know for me I miss mine terribly. Its hard to not have her to share the little things with, such as the kids and their successes, creating something new I have never tried before- like the rag quilt this week, or just needing to talk. I am thankful I listened to my heart for this truly is another beautiful creation. Thank you Lord for making me a vessel to do Your work. 

Rag Quilt Finished

I finished this quilt last night. I would say the whole thing from start to finish took 20 hours. Probably the longest taking quilt I have ever made. If that makes sense. It was so worth it when I pulled this out of the dryer though. I am tempted to wash and dry it one more time, but I am unsure. It has been washed and dryed twice. In fact in Tide and Downy so that it smells just like her mom's clothes when they came to me. I really like it!
Closeup of the ragging part
Another closeup
The Front-back- not sure which is which on these quilts since they are in a way turned inside out. I think this quilt will be extra special just because of the multiple clothing items I was able to use and that it is nothing but her mothers clothing, even the batting is sweatshirts/pants that she wore. Just the idea to me seems so old fashioned and lovely.

He Supplies All Our Needs

"But my God shall supply all your needs
according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus"
Philippians 4:19

I am so thankful for this verse. The idea that the Lord will supply all our needs is amazing. My deepest desire this winter, outside of electric blankets and heaters, was for new windows. Recently this month I found myself with eight quilt orders. I was a little concerned at how I would manage it all. Last night I finished that last order. Those eight orders will provide us with one room of new windows. In fact yesterday in the mail I got a card for $25 off $250 in purchases from Lowes, if we use our discover card to pay for it. Therefore, the provision was granted a step further.
For us windows probably are our deepest need at the moment. We have had some rough winters here in Texas over the last couple of years, and our summers are getting equally as hot on the opposite scale. All three kids will be home this summer, there is no summer school, or camps this year so I worry about the heat of our house with no AC, in the main dwelling areas. I am excited to see how HE continues to work in our lives. How I can continue to work very hard on the orders that HE is providing us and it continues to provide the little things that we need to make lives a little more normal.
I am thankful for this promise, which is exactly what this verse is, a promise to us that HE will provide our needs. Now this is not just a want type thing, this is a true need, such as clothing, food, shelter. I am so grateful to have a Gracious Heavenly Father that takes care of us and continues to see to our daily lives.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tackle it Tuesday

My Process today- I started with all my Pre-quilted squares that I did yesterday. They are all laid out to form a quilt top.
I took them row by row to get these 15 rows of blocks to turn it into the quilt top
This is the finished quilt top front/back. Measures about 50 by 75.
This is the jean side of the quilt top- which I still need to cut so that it will "rag"
This quilt has some cute attributes like pockets. I admit you can't use the pocket becuase of the X style quilting per block, but I did carefully sew the X so that each pocket that had a "flap" can still lift up.
Another closeup of a pocket. All in a days work- not bad. Hopefully tonight I can start the "ragging" of the quilt, and maybe get a dresser painted that I need my husband to pull out of our room for me. Right now its purple from when my daughters room was pink/purple, but that was years ago, I would love for it to return to a "more neutral" color.

What Have I Been Up To?

I finally got all the DVD's, CDS, Books on Tape into CD Books- it is so much nicer, I have so much more space now too, and its organized! So I was left with another huge bag of trash too.
The owners before us had this shelf up in the hall by the back door. I don't really know what the purpose was- I have not liked it- EVER, but yet it has stayed nearly four years. Paul always stores junk up there and I don't care for that either. I had an idea to put a shoe rack on this wall then decided after he took the shelf down that I don't want that either. Mainly because it would be only Paul's shoes and well that seemed silly. I think we need to not be a lazy family- shoes need to go in our rooms. They always did when I was growing up. So, for now it is an empty wall, and one that needs to be painted- I got the trim paint this weekend so it will be a future project. The white paint I already have.
Speaking of paint, I got some charcoal grayish black paint- called Black Coal this weekend for this shelf and a dresser, both of which needed painting. This was white before and in the den next to the couch/stairs. It has pretty much been a game unit forever. That didn't change, but its location did.
This is my newly painted, organized and relocated game center. It is by the front door in the living room- where I want family time to take place now, and it is all nice and tucked out of the way. Much much better than before. I even have space on top and on bottom if I decide to use it.
Another transition. We have always had the family computer in our room, we also have never had a family room and my quilting was always in this room. That has changed, the quilting moved to our bedroom and I wanted the kids out of their so last night I relocated the desk/computer etc out. I had a little space still in the living room so this worked perfect. I also have more room for my sewing table now. I am loving that too. Amazing how a few transitions are being made and our house is running much better. So far I have been able to keep up with all the rooms that have been cleaned- they are staying clean. I think that is because we have less stuff in them. It is encouraging as we continue our journey through 40 Days 40 Bags- Super Spring Cleaning and Living More Simply.

New Blog Award

Lisa Marie at This Little Light of Mine gave me an award this morning for my Blog. Here reason for me being one of the fellow bloggers she gave this award to is,
"These are all beautiful women and awesome bloggers who inspire and challenge me. They're not necessarily new to blogging, but they are new to me."

I admit I don't have anyone to really give this to at the moment. Mainly because I have not done a whole lot of reading of other blogs lately. I have been pretty busy with orders and getting my house in order. However, two blogs that I read pretty regularly are 
Rita at Following 31
and Joy at Kinard Season
They are lovely blogs.
I am thankful that I continue to inspire people. I am looking forward to getting back to my weekly biblical posts. I have been in a transition period the last few weeks so I had to let something go, sometimes it truly is hard to do it all.
And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.
Mark 16:15

Kroger and Not Making a Difference

This morning I am left feeling a little down over this whole new coupon policy that Kroger will be putting through. It will really hurt our family. I have been able to stockpile, save so much on food and really have a nice menu for us this past two years. It makes a huge difference to us to be able to double and triple coupons. Not just $50 a month but hundreds. I wrote them last week and explained our situation etc. I didn't even feel their response was anything but a typical reply.
"Thank you for contacting The Kroger Family of Stores.  We appreciate your comments regarding our coupon policy.  We understand your stance as a customer, and respect your opinion.  Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with us.  We value your patronage and hope you will continue to shop with us.  Please let us know if we can be of further assistance.  Have a nice day."
 I know times change and we must change with them. I just wish they would reconsider their policy. I know we will not be the only family affected as Kroger Company- is under many other store names, so this will be U.S. wide. It really does seem you would want to help people in a time that we really need it more than ever before.

Monday, March 28, 2011

MIA and Menu Planning

So I have been a little MIA on the Blog world lately. I have been so busy! Last week on Monday I finished binding two quilts, then cleaned both boys rooms- which took a while, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday- I made from start to finish - 3 quilts. Thursday afternoon I had lunch with my husband, then came home and began to cut clothing for my current quilt order. Friday we had the kids awards so I joined my friend who has a fellow student at the campus for lunch first, then came home and worked more at cutting the clothing for my quilt. Saturday and Sunday were busy with house projects- buying some paint etc and working on homework with kids and getting the rest of the clothing cut- THIS WAS A LONG PROCESS!
So this morning I have all the dishes done, working on wash, bathroom, living room, exercise room and kitchen are all cleaned, even made my oldest son's bed and picked his room up. I have dinner in the crockpot, a MENU for this week- which I failed to do last week. HUGE MISTAKE!
I have 150 quilt blocks all pinned and ready for me to sew the X seams on them. Later I will post some pictures of my 40 days 40 Bags, as well as my game center I finished this weekend. 
Menu for this week

Charro Beans- adults
Bean and Cheese burritos - kids

Soup and Sandwiches

Blueberry Waffles and Bacon

Tuna Helper Boys
Mac n Cheese- Girls
Daddy works late

Probably Fast Food- Jakob and I work a Carnival, so we are gone


Chicken Taco Salads- with leftover Fajita meat

Friday, March 25, 2011

Kroger and New Coupon Policy

I encourage you to take a moment out of your evening or day and write KROGER now. I know my family depends on sales/coupons to meet our budget every week. I am outraged and saddened to learn that they will NOT be double and tripling coupons, because they feel only a mere 7% of us use it. Please act today and let them know its a policy to be kept in such a devastated economy! Go to Kroger.Com- there is an online email.
Here is a link to their new coupon policy. Please act today and let them know you want them to keep doubling and tripling coupons.
New Coupon Policy 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Thankful Thursday

This week I am thankful for sleep. I have been so tired lately. Finally this week I have been sleeping better. 
I am also thankful that I got news on Jakob's class rank- #1 of 504 Freshman
I am thankful for the extra work Paul picked up last night
I am thankful for the quilt orders I am wrapping up this week.
I am thankful that the house is a little more clean even if it has a long way to go before its how I would like it
I am thankful that it is looking hopeful that we will get new windows and possibly have AC this summer, even if its a huge window unit.
I am thankful for the fact that we serve a powerful Lord and that he continues to provide our needs.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Quilt for a Grandson

This is a quilt for a grandson, it is made out of his grandfather's clothing. I made two quilts for this customer before. They were using hunting like colored clothing. These quilts she wanted a navy blue with lighter blue fabric for the border. I found her exactly that. I actually had to special order it from Joann's.

There were not as many pockets or special things with this one but I tried my best to add some character to it. It contains 28 8 inch blocks.

I found a midnight blue flannel for the back and an almost denim blue fabric for the binding. In this photo you can almost see the little blue specs on the fabric for the border. I really like how the quilt turned out.

I have one more to do tomorrow, she has two sons, it will be very similar because the same clothing items are used and she wanted the same fabrics. The finished quilt is about 45 by 72.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Teeny Bopper Quilt Order

New Quilt Order Finished. I am calling this a Teeny Bopper Quilt. I will admit I was a little worried when I saw that some of the Tshirts were print from top to bottom, however, this morning I woke up at 5:30 and had a plan. I love it!
The top and bottom blocks are roughly 14 X 20 inches. Where the middle 6 blocks are 14 inches square. It really helped give this quilt a different look.
I was a little worried when I was cutting the shirts because they were awfully thin, but that worked out too with a nice interfacing. Thankfully I had some lightweight on hand- its a little thicker than what I normally use and it really supported the shirts nicely. The customer wanted black on the front and black flannel. Very fitting because the shirts really stand out.
It is nearly 50 inches wide by 85 long. I chose to use a 2.5 in strip just to make the quilt a little wider to balance out the length. Its a nice throw size.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Jakob and School Progress

I asked Jakob's counselor what his class ranking was by email just prior to Spring Break. I was told they would be calculating it in the last nine weeks of the year. He is currently a freshman, taking a very difficult load. He is taking AP English, Biology, Algebra II, Spanish II, AP Human Geography * a college like course*, Art and PE. He gets all A's but sometimes I worry because they might be in the 94-96 range. 
At this point in his life he is interested in video gaming- meaning creating his own games- which he does on graph paper all the time as well as on the computer. Then he desires to do something with engineering as a full time job after High School/College. 
Next year he is taking an even more difficult course load, with Spanish Three, Pre Cal and Chemistry added to the mix, I think he will enjoy the year more because he will be able to take a video gaming course too, and no PE.
I was very excited to get this response today via email,
"Hi Ms. Wells,
I hope you guys had a great Spring Break.  Jakob is ranked #1 out of 504.  Congratulations on his hard work.  Have a great day."

WOW!! He really does work hard, I am super proud of him. I do tend to lecture a great deal that I don't feel he does as well as he could, sometimes I feel that he does just what he needs to, in order to get the A. I loved the look on his face tonight when I shared this wonderful news. I pray that he can continue to do this well his last three years as he looks for a tuition free college experience from places such as Rice, A&M, and University of Texas.

40 Days 40 Bags Zekaryah's Room

Oh my goodness!
You know out of all my children Zekaryah is the one always leaving stuff around. The other two do also but he is double their laziness. I could not believe my eyes at his "Supposed Clean Room"

I had done wash and sent it up to him, I was very disappointed to see it not put away, in fact nothing had been put away in some time.

I began with clothing. We had a bag to donate, everything else is on the shelf- which eventually once we remodel his room he will have real shelves for clothes in this corner- kind of book case style
The Trash-- the Trash -- the Trash! This is were I actually got upset, water bottles, coke cans, food, plates, dishes oh wow. This is a 32 Gallon Trash Can! This whole trash can is full to the brim, this all came from HIS ROOM! We also found out why the rat was living here, it is called FILTH! We have a strict policy about not eating in our rooms, well I guess he has ignored this for some time. Needless to say he will not be able to buy candy or coke with his own money for a long while, and I will have to go into his room every other day to make sure he is cleaning it. Since he is in the Loft I don't even notice his room, that was my mistake.

This is the dirty clothes bucket- supposedly I had washed everything, guess not.
After two hours of work- both of us, here is part of the room now cleaned

He actually has a clean area to sleep, with nothing under his futon or tv center- which he almost lost due to my raging anger.

He can now find his clothes, they are now all organized- AGAIN.. This was a big job, but a good tackle. I really hope my two hours of lecturing while cleaning will sink in. I was just blown away at how he was "living". Glad we got that rat too, I might have screamed my way all down the stairs had he been up there while I was cleaning. I am thankful the Lord watched over Zekaryah and he never got bit while he was sleeping up there.

Loving Husband

My husband is very thoughtful. Tonight he came home from Big Lots and the Dollar Store with a few items for me. I really wanted some more organizational stuff to help out. First are two more cd/dvd books. I had a few more I couldn't fit into the two he bought be before. Then 2 packages of wooden utensils for the kitchen, and a nice size laundry basket that will fit in the closet in the bathroom for everyone to put their clothes in, we did not have one, and I am hoping this will help everyone from dumping everything on the floor all the time. We shall see.
I also wanted some small trash cans. He got just one to make sure I would like it, not to mention he said it was a little pricey for his taste. This one will go in Jakob's room since he had black for a good share of his accessories. I am hoping it will help with the desk situation we had to clean up today. I love practical gifts and with all the hard work I have been putting in, this was wonderful affirmation of a job well done.

40 Days 40 Bags Jakobs Room

I have been asking Jakob since Spring Break to clean his room. Seems we didn't get very far, however had did have a lot of homework to do and we got all but one thing on my list done as far as that was concerned so I wasn't really all that upset. Today I went in to change his sheets and decided to help him out a little, I did his bed and swept everything to the middle of the floor. He didn't have any homework tonight so his job was to finish it all up.
Before- his desk- hmm how does he function?

This is all from under his bed, the dressers and the floor. Really maybe lots of trash?

His clothes, he tends to stack and not put away.

The donation bag, we also had a trash one too.

We had moved all the blankets from his left side so that he now has a place to put shirts and shorts, then the right side he has a new place for pants. He now will also just have his extra blankets, which I need to get a container for, instead of everyone's blankets for the whole house. Eventually we might have to go to all shelving because the dresser honestly holds very little. It does look much better.

His bed nice and tidy

We went through this dresser and donated clothes he didn't like or didn't wear anymore. Now it is just for games and things like little legos. It is nice and organized. I hope it stays that way.

The desk- I admit the drawers need work but he can do that another day. The room is much cleaner and I am thankful to have one bag to add to my donated list, and one bag to add to the trash list. Zekaryah is working on his tonight too, so I will have a post for tomorrow. Will be nice that two more rooms are nice and tidy as we continue to travel through the house doing our March Spring Cleaning.

Quilts and More Quilts

Quilt 3 of Mother's Clothing Order- Used Tshirts, Regular Shirts and two Sweatshirts to complete this quilt.
Quilt has a black fabric with a little circle on it, in a shade of olive green. I used an Olive Green tone on tone to bind the quilt to pull the coloring out some. The backing is also done in an Olive Green colored Flannel.
Closeup of a couple of the shirts. I found using a regular style shirt works pretty well too.
I love this quilt. I took 31 clothing items plus 4 parts of shirts (repeat) to make a 35 block quilt with 8 in squares for the Father. I used pants, shorts, shirts, a house robe, long sleeve shirts. It came out very nice. A couple of the shirts had two parts to them- hence the little white neck line. I thought that added a special affect.
I tried to capture as many pockets on the shirts, pants and shorts as I could to add more character to the quilt. This quilt was a little smaller in size than the other three I made her but I felt that was okay with all the added bonuses to the quilt.

Here is another closeup. It has the same three fabrics as the Brother's Quilt, the black/olive border, olive tone on tone binding and olive flannel backing. I hope that this capture enough different clothing options to bring back some memories to treasure for him.