Thursday, April 17, 2014

Really Random Thursday, 4/17/14

This week I like:

A boy and his teacher at open house:
with ice cream to celebrate afterwards.
Pedicure partners:
Baby fingers:
Flowers from the garden:
and seen in a parking lot:

A fun night with special people:
And funny sayings seen on social media:
Not that I even have a clue what that last one means...

Your turn.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Friday Finish

This is a just a little finish and I nearly forgot about it. When this one started kindergarten last fall, he was very particular about keeping his pencils and markers together, and separated from all the other pencils and markers in the house. So he kept them in a ziplok baggie.

 One of my all-time favorite pictures--he looks so much like his daddy at this age
*sigh* What good is it having a grandma who sews, if she doesn't actually sew something for your pencils and markers??

I finally took care of the situation and made him this little zippered pouch with a see-through window. And added some new pencils and erasers. I used a pattern from here ( search for Peek-A-Boo Bag). It took awhile to figure out some of the steps, but it turned out really well.He's happy with it. And that's all that counts.
The finished size is 9" x 10"
I'm linking up with Finish It Friday and TGIFF.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Really Random Thursday, 4/10/14

Two weeks ago, we had a visit from Mark's youngest brother, Pete, and his 15-year-old daughter, Hannah.

We hadn't seen them in ten years. We had a great time. And I think they enjoyed connecting with Aaron, Christa and the kids. We celebrated a 6th birthday the first evening they were here.
Hannah ended up painting on a sunny day. They come from Idaho--it snowed while they were gone.

She gave a manicure.
She gave drawing lessons.
And played the ukelele.
Charlotte participated in her first music festival competition.

She takes lessons from my mother, who still has quite a few other students, including Charlotte's brother, Levi.
I was able to tag along.

Christa was working all during the festival. Four generations...

Remember a couple of weeks ago I mentioned that a friend named one of her chickens Cindy Lou after me. She has grown a lot! Isn't she pretty?
Last week on Instagram there was something called the Rainbow Flash Mob. Someone would assign a color to you, and you would gather things together and take a picture. My color was red.
I had a good morning yesterday.
And finally...I have no comment on this.
Your turn. Remember to include at least one random thing, and also please link back to me here. Thanks!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Postscript....and a little WIP

The MCC sale was a resounding success, raising nearly $200,000 in about 24 hours!

Amish Stars sold for $3,500.

These pictures were taken before the sale actually started.
Several quilts are featured each year, four in the front, and four facing the other way. There is Amish Stars over on the left.

I posted this on Instagram the other day, to give you an idea about the scale of this quilt. It's big.
Super cute t-shirt from Patchwork Threads
The system they use for auctioning is great. They have a big turntable, a wall that separates it in half, with a bed on each side. They stack the quilts/afghans/comforters, about ten at a time on each bed. Then an announcer gives a little bit of info before the auctioneer actually begins, while two white-gloved women hold up the quilt,
then turn it around so the back side can be seen.

When one stack has been auctioned off, the turntable swings around, and the process starts all over. It is very efficient and saves a lot of time.

I had forgotten that a few months ago, I went through some quilts I made a long time ago, knew I was no longer interested in them, so I donated them as well.
These three quilts raised an additional $1,100.

And also a piece of handpainted china on the silent auction table, something I painted back in 1984.  That probably qualifies as vintage by now...
Christa's t-shirt quilt sold for $2,600! I think I was more nervous and excited when the auctioning started on hers than with Amish Stars!
There was a lot of good food. However, I didn't get out of the gym much and didn't take any pictures. There was also some face painting going on.
That night, the West Coast Mennonite Men's Chorus had a concert, along with another one the following night. While the concert is free, an offering basket is passed around and 100% of the money donated is also given to MCC. There are 143 men singing, ranging in age from 15 through 90+, and it is truly a phenomenal sound!
 There is Mark, on the far right.
The bottom line is raising money for the needy around the world. When I became aware this project in Kenya, I was truly amazed at this simple, yet effective relief effort. 
Here in an impoverished area in Nairobi, tables of clear plastic bottles fill the courtyard. Throughout the day, the sun's ultraviolet rays soak into the bottles of water, killing the bacteria , viruses and parasites, providing safe drinking water to the school's pupils. Isn't that amazing? Workers from MCC are in this community teaching solar disinfection, sanitation and hygiene that is changing lives.

Last week I had a little giveaway of some Oakshott scraps. Thanks to everyone who commented and told me about the charitable organizations you support. The two winners are:

#46, Pickles Quilting and

#9, Brenda

I will be contacting each of you for your mailing information.

Thanks for following along on this journey again. I already know what I'm planning to do two years from now!

Oh, and I'm currently working on "Mabel." The top is all pieced. So to quilt it. Thinking of a single line of charcoal stitching through the crosses going both ways, essentially grid quilting. Thoughts?
Linking up with Lee this week.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Oakshotts...and a little giveaway

Recently I have been focusing on the upcoming charity auction with all funds raised going to help those truly in need through MCC.

I have shared progress shots of Swooning with Oakshotts, now known as Amish Stars, both here and on Instagram.
As mentioned previously, Michael Oakshott offered a very generous discount for the fabric in this quilt. Today I would like to focus on the actual Oakshott fabric.

In case you are not familiar with what a shot cotton actually is, let's begin there. While shot cottons read as solids, they really are not solids.They are woven with two colors, a warp color and a weft color, meaning one color runs the length of the fabric, and the second color runs the width of the fabric. This means that the fabric often has a beautiful iridescent quality to it.

In the case of Oakshott cottons (and isn't it a lovely coincidence that this supplier of such beautiful shot cottons is named Oakshott!), the fabric is hand woven by "master weavers who have patiently taken two hours to prepare and weave each metre." The fabric is ethically sourced from master weavers along the Malabar coast of South West India.

You can read more about the company and fabric  here, but here is just a little synopsis: The yarn for the fabric is boiled for 12 hours, "...the fabrics are hand-dyed; the waste water is so pure that it is used on the vegetable beds."

Since some of the funds from this quilt will go toward clean water projects in Third World countries, I like knowing that the waste water from the dyeing of this fabric is clean enough to use to raise vegetables.

This is one of my favorite pictures, the face of MCC.
These women live in South Sudan, a country ravaged by unrest, and who are trying to rebuild their lives after decades of civil war. MCC is partnering with the Episcopal Church of Sudan Mother's Union Women's Empowerment Project to help women learn sewing, life skills and small business management. THIS is one of many places where funds from tomorrow's quilt auction will go. We will sit in a comfortable building, raising our bidding numbers, and it is easy to forget about the hardships endured by people in our local communities and worldwide.

Thank you, Michael, not only for your gorgeous fabric, but for your generosity in being a part of this good work.

So, hey, how about a giveaway? I will be putting together a little collection of Oakshott scraps to share with two of you. Just let me know if you have a favorite charity...or a favorite color.

I'll choose two winners on Sunday night, 6 p.m. PDT. Oakshott Fabrics is located in the UK so of course it would only be right to include everybody in the giveaway, right?

Have a lovely weekend.