Local Longarmer

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Not too long ago I saw that a friend of mine was looking to start a blog.  Before I knew it, I had volunteered my help and our daughter Kayla’s help.  One evening I went to her house.  I don’t know how much help I was but I did have fun.

Let me introduce you to Carla.


She’s a super talented mom to three girls.  She grew up as  a farm girl in the neighboring town of St. Lucas.  Her husband is a busy-busy guy working in the plumbing and heating business.  For quite awhile Carla worked at an area quilt shop and served as their longarm quilter.

Her family called and Carla decided that she’d devote more time to them but missed working on quilts.  Next thing she knew she had her own APQS machine and was doing quilts for her, the girls and other family members.

Fast forward a couple years…the girls are spreading their wings and heading out on their own leaving more quiet time.  Carla decided it was a perfect time to work on growing her business..thus the want of a blog.

Carla does wonderful work.  She is very careful and, dare I say, a bit of a perfectionist….perfect traits for a person to work on your quilts.  She’s even done some competition quilting, having offerings at the State Fair.

Here is a quilt she recently finished for a customer. [Read more...]

A Day Away…

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Hubby and I have been trying to get away ever since Christmas.  We typically take a weekend and leave.  We tried once in January…a couple times in February and once in March.  Either Hubby’s boss was going to be gone (and they both can’t be gone on the same weekends), we had another commitment or I was sick.  Finally this weekend, the stars aligned and we were able to leave.

Kelli was awesome and took over childcare duties on Friday so we could have an overnight away….Typically when we go, we try to be gone two days, but we had a commitment on Saturday that we had to be back for.  It wan’t what we usually take for time away but, neither of us were complaining.  We were thankful to get what we got.

So what do we do on a day away??  Not all fun stuff…  It started out with a trip to the doctor to get a blood draw for me.  I have my one year cancer screening coming up and I needed to get the blood work done in advance for that.  Hubby did some errands while I was doing that.  Neither of us get away during the day and some of the errands are hard to do if we can’t hit day hours when some stores are opening.  He got some glass cut for a project that he’s doing (more on that on another day)  I was thrilled that the glass got cut as that makes my project one day closer to finished.

After that we stopped at a flea market.  It was small and junkie but Hubby was thrilled.  He got some things that he’s going to fix up and redo for the antique market in Clear Lake this fall.  This trunk was one of the items.

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It was only $10.  We were both happy with it.  He’ll clean it up…fix up a more appropriate looking handle and sell for  a higher price.  It’s super sturdy.

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He got a couple other wooden boxes there…

Then we went on to Ridgeway, Iowa.  We stopped at a architectural salvage place there called NEI Architectural Salvage and Skräp Work.  We are still on the hunt for a few pieces of trim for our house.  This trim pieces is what we really want.  As much as look, this one is very hard to find.

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When the people built our house -over 100 years ago- they didn’t take a lot of care in their placement of the trim.  For example, here is the arch going from the living room to the front entry.  Notice how the pretty decorative trim pieces are cut? [Read more...]

Cleaning up the Neighborhood

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You might remember back in early December that our neighbors to the back tore down an old sagging shed they had on their property.  Read about it here if you missed it.

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It ended up in a pile.  One blog reader commented saying that they hoped the neighbors were going to do something with the pile…well they did!

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This week they had the fire department come and burn the pile.

You can see there is  a pole right next to the pile.  That’s an electric pole and in order for the pile to burn and not the pole, the firemen needed to be on scene to keep the pole watered down.

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They light the fire….

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and before long they had it burning pretty good.  See? [Read more...]

Shopping for Batiks

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Monday I told you that I was cutting a quilt from scrap batiks fabrics that had been gifted to me.  Well I got as far as I could and then I needed more fabric.  Saturday was the day for me to go shopping.

I needed neutrals for the Garlic Knots quilt that I had started cutting.  I almost have everything cut out except for the neutrals.  I think this is going to look awesome in batiks.

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As I was cutting the scraps up into pieces for my scrap users system, many pieces were 2 1/2″.  That got me thinking….I was sure there was a Bonnie quilt that used 2 1/2″ pieces.  Yep.  This one, Texas Tumbleweeds.  Well I might as well get the stuff for this.  We have a wedding this fall and this would be a perfect project.

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Then I noticed that there were a lot of green 2″ scraps in the bag….that got me thinking.  I remembered that my friend Connie had mentioned that she was planning on making Scrap Crystals from Bonnie Hunter’s More Adventures with Leaders and Enders book and do it batiks.  WOW!  I loved the idea and it would make perfect use of all the green 2″ scraps that were in the bag.  I ended up cutting most of the blue scraps into 2″ strips and all of the green into 2″ squares.  I could tell I would be short blue but I had all of the green I needed except for sashing…so I needed sashing and neutrals again.

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That meant a shopping trip.  I decided to go to New Hampton.  There are two shops there and two shops is better than one…right?

First I went to Material Magic.

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I got quite a haul.  Want to see? [Read more...]