Day Trip

Hubby and I had a bad case of "gotta go somewhere", so Tuesday afternoon we packed up Leia and headed for Long Beach. 
We timed it almost perfectly traffic-wise, hitting just a bit of rush hour madness before reaching our goal - Aquarium of the Pacific - just a few minutes after half-price admission rates went into effect.
Leia loves the aquarium - especially petting the critters -
but seldom wants to stay more than 2 hours. The 5-8 pm window was perfect (did I mention it was half price?)
We had plenty of time to see my favorite sea dragons -

and discover that not only do they have Leafy Sea Dragons

but also Reedy and Ribbon sea dragons. So cool!!

Jellies were in abundance -
including some with crazy flashing lights.

A quick stop at Bubba Gump's to feed little Miss Grumpy
and we were off to our final destination -

an overnight stay on the Queen Mary!

Leia loved that she had her own little room within our stateroom.
She also thought the choice of bathwater - fresh or salt - was pretty cool too. (I might have told her the salt water came straight from the ocean . . . sea creatures and all . . .)
We did a bit of exploring that night
but saved most of our adventuring for the following day.
We happily wandered for several hours, 
from the bridge,
through all the decks
and even "under water" to view a propeller.
Leia even learned what these red things were for -
photo props, right?

A fun, relaxing, slightly educational trip. (Don't tell Leia that last "educational" part, ok?) 


Caribbean Sunrise

Back in 2009 or '10, I bought a gorgeous jelly roll in Fall colors while shopping with Ellen. This was before I started quilting, before I even knew what a jelly roll was. I just knew I loved these colors and WANTED it.
Since then, I've been waiting for inspiration to strike, for the jelly to tell me what it wanted to be. Well, it spoke, I listened and we're done!

I finished the borders last night while hubby was at a soccer game, then put the back together today.
Chinese dragons for the outer border because hey, why not??

I may have forgotten that I even needed a back, until hubby reminded me as I proudly showed off the completed top last night. . .
The gold batik was in my stash and the blue batik came from Aunt Marti's destash. The blue is lighter in real life - more like the photo below - and it's perfect.

With its inner turquoise border and bright hues, this one reminds me more of the Caribbean than Fall leaves, so I'm calling it "Caribbean Sunrise." 
It'll be a couple of weeks before I get it back from being long-arm quilted. Then binding, washing and admiring are all that remain to be done.


Tour de Sewing

Sewing during the Tour de France continued with these two dresses.
Leanne chose the skirt fabric for both.
I was very surprised when she wanted the black/white polka dots, but she grabbed it at the fabric store and refused to consider anything else. 
I think it makes a very sophisticated dress - if you can call any t-shirt dress 'sophisticated'.  

And with that, my backlog of little girl dresses is done. Excited to work on my quilting FO's for the rest of the Tour.


Littlest Mermaid

The mermaid quilt and its tiny recipient.

I think it will be awhile before she outgrows it.


Dressy Lady

Leanne was nice enough to model the two t-shirt dresses I finished for her yesterday.
She picked out the fabric for this Sofia dress
but she hadn't seen this t-shirt or fabric yet.
Leanne's definitely the shoe-craziest of my grand-girls, so the shirt is perfect for her. "A princess must have shoes!"
We also worked on her bathing suit cover-up, adding beads to one of the tie dye shirts she made last week.
I thought she could do the beading herself, with me just tying the knots afterward, but that was a no-go.
Twisting the fabric, pushing the bead on, and then pulling the tail through was just a bit too complicated for her 4-year-old fingers.
I was undecided about adding beads to the sleeves, but after looking at these pics, I think that's a must-do. Guess I know what I'll be working on tonight.


Fabric Bowls, Indigo Version

Finished the second bowl last night and gifted it today. 
The fabric is from my Craftcation indigo class, taught by Kaari from French General. Enjoyed the class and loved the fabric, so I wanted to use it for something special. I was afraid the color might run, so turning it into a bowl rather than a quilt seemed the better idea. 
Both bowls were made according to the original pattern* I learned in class at Quilt Ventura and used the template hubby made for me. The 'firecracker' bowl now lives at Vickie's house.
This one stayed with me. 
It has a couple of silly mistakes and "learning experiences" (like forgetting to stitch the bottom panel on and trim the fabric before doing the satin stitch) but I love it anyway.
Quilt Ventura is planning to offer a new fabric "vase" class, like the ones in this book, and I Can.Not.WAIT! 

Note to me: first bowl darts alternate cut depth of 2" then 3.5". Second bowl cut all 2" darts.


Tour de Sewing

It's Tour de France Fleece time again, but I just can't muster any interest in spinning this year. Instead, my goal is to sew/quilt each day the riders are on their bikes. Saturday was finishing up the mermaid quilt; Sunday was working on another set of bowls (pics tomorrow).  

Yesterday I started 8 more pillowcases,
  Surfboards for hubby; trucks for Travis.

some from kits I bought a few years ago; 
 Laurel Birch birds for me; penguins for . . . . I don't know yet.
 others from fabric I bought especially for this project.
 Matching pink and purple flowers for guests.

Today I finished them up, French seams and all.
This set is for Gary, a die-hard Kings fan. It's difficult to find something craft-related that the boys in the family will like, so I was pleased when I found this fabric. And he was pleased when he received them today. That makes it a win-win, so yay me!