Thursday, December 31, 2009


Welcoming the new year with a promise to myself. Less sadness, more joy. Less fear, more courage. Less doormat, more super girl.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Last Minute Sewing....With Help

I'm trying to finish up the quilting on a quilt for my son and then, help arrived. At this very moment, my helper is very content asleep on the quilt. The extra 15 pounds makes it harder to free motion. :)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Catch Up

I've been busy sewing. The family got table runners this year. The blue one is a Chrismakha Christmas/Hanukkah for my friend Kathy. Every year I make gingerbread houses with my students. We then make sym-ma-trees and create a snow village. The snow is about 6 yards of Warm and White. The black felt is being held by 4 little elves trying hard not to be seen.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Christmas Quilt Swap

I received my swap quilt from Maria in Denmark. She is a beautiful seamstress and was super generous with all the extra gifts. She included a gift to open for each Sunday in December. By month's end, I'll have an advent quilt for Christmas. Her paper piecing is impeccable. I am thrilled!
P.S. I wonder if she has a cat. Rusty was all over the box.
Thank you Maria!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Little Dresses

I have been sewing forever. Quilts have taken over my life for the last 20 years. Every now and then I get in the mood to make something cute and girly. These are in my Etsy shop. I hope they go to a good home!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Christmas Basket

I was determined to make this swap quilt from scraps and only scraps. I used an idea from a blog post at Library Gal Quilts. I just love the way it turned out. It almost didn't get mailed to my swap partner. I pieced another basket at the same time. It will be MINE! I quilted it with little packages, stars, and pine boughs.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Pilgrim Day

Tomorrow is Settlement Day. We have been pilgrims for 66 days and now it is time to make our pilgrim home. Parents are coming to help with gardening, quilting, rug making, mattress making, and fireplace building. While I was busy getting everything ready, Rusty was warming his perfect spot and keeping my husband from HIS favorite spot. The cat always wins.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Dolly Quilts

I have been saving pink scraps and buying pink for the sake of pink fabric for years. Every now and then I make up a bunch of these. I had fun making the border quilting different. This one has daisies. I made another one with butterflies. I hope they find a good home through my etsy site.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Housing Project Completed

The house quilt was finished ahead of time, not my usual last minute sewing on binding on the way to the event. I had so much fun, real fun, quilting it. There was a freedom in the whimsy. Nothing had to be just so. I think it is the best quilting I have done to date. I used 15 different colors of thread and over 25 different fabrics. It ended up making a nice sum for the PTA and was purchased by one of the parents in my class.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Thank You Tonya and Lynne

Dear Fearless Liberated Ladies,
I did it! I pieced my first word! Actually 2 words with a tilde! Can you sense my excitement? I sat at the sewing machine with the computer next to my little cutting board. I ripped out a few because I kept getting messed up on background and letter color, but other than that, I did it. I love the little 'c'. My mom's reaction was that I didn't measure. Nope, didn't measure a bit until I attached it to the houses. This quilt is a tribute to the La Canada houses we love and almost lost in the fire. It will be in a silent auction next Saturday. I need to get borders on and start quilting today. Thank you both. Even though you didn't know it, you were there with me yesterday cheering me on.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Wonky? Maybe Not

I have had this idea of making a home town quilt for the school auction for a couple of years. I wanted the kids to draw a house and then I would copy it somehow. This year I am determined to make it work, even if everything isn't "perfect". The idea of being liberated is tempting, but I always seem to try and straighten everything up and do the math way too much. Here are my first attempts at houses. I gave up on every block being the same size in the first 30 seconds. Now if I can only let go a bit and let the houses be a bit more wonky.

P.S. Of course, Rusty had to help.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Goodbye Patrick

I teach at a school, in a small town, nestled up against the now bare San Gabriel Mountains. Our classrooms are in pods. We can swing open the doors and visit each other. My neighbor Jan teaches first grade. I teach second. I love seeing her little ones and scope out future second graders for Room 7.

When I came to work at this school, I was immediately struck at how connected everyone was. As each new teacher comes, they are brought into the fold. Today the school family was out in force to support Jan and to say goodbye to her son. At 25, Patrick died last week. His mom says his death was a perfect storm of circumstances.

I'm proud to work with such caring people and I know going forward that Jan will have many to help her through the tough times ahead.
Goodbye Patrick

Sunday, August 30, 2009

I Heart Fireman!

This photo is amazing. These are the homes just north of my school. They have an amazing view all the way to the ocean and back up against the Angeles National Forest. Each one was nearly lost yesterday. When the smoke cleared, the brush was gone and the houses remained unscathed!

The fire has now moved more in my direction but seems to be burning up the canyon and I live down. The sky is brown. The air is brown and thick with smoke. How am I going to have 20 little ones all cooped up tomorrow? Welcome to second grade, now don't breathe until after 3:00.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


As a child, I used to sit on the front lawn and watch the hillsides burn. My father was a Los Angeles County fireman and we knew he was up there working. It was an event. Now as an adult, it is an event with fear attached. I left school on Thursday night and saw many people out in the street taking photos as the fire makes its way down the mountain approaching multi million dollar homes and my school! This is a view up from school.

Friday morning when I came to work the campus was covered with ash and burnt leaves. My classroom was filled with smoke. I've lived here all my life and it has never been this close to so many people I know. Luckily I live 4 miles away, but I will have little ones start school on Monday who live in harm's way. We pray that the winds stay down and that the smoke lifts so the water drops can continue.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

You Never Know

Having spent most of the summer sleeping in. I had to get up early yesterday to sit on an interview panel at school. Downstairs at 7:00 my cell phone was ringing. My cousin Bobbie, who never calls, is on the line. "Debbie (the name my family calls me), Steve died last night." Steve was 49. His wife is my cousin Joyce. They have a 16 year old son. Steve had a sore throat, took amoxicillin, and died. He was a lovely man. Steve was funny and optimistic. We are all just so sad that he is gone.

Saturday, August 8, 2009


We just came from watching Julie and Julia. Two hours of perfection. We go to the movies every weekend. The place was packed and at 52, I was one of the youngest in the audience. There was applause at the end and even a tear or two. I came home and hugged my autographed copy of Julia's baking book.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Lovely Alexis

I teach with a lovely lady named Lynley. She is pretty and calm and just has a sweet way with kids. When she announced that she was pregnant, I knew just what to make. I wanted this to look like something her grandmother had saved, an old fashioned pretty pink quilt. The quilt was made with scraps, except for the Peter Rabbit toile border. I quilted it with heart shaped leaves and daisies. Much to my surprise, baby Alexis' nursery is decorated with Peter Rabbit and pink toile. I nailed it! I also made her matching burp cloths. The burp cloths have been a big hit so I set up an etsy site, Caitty Baby.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Charmed Gift Bag Giveaway!

I love to check in on the Moda Bake Shop and see what's new. The talented ladies post tutorials for quilts and such using Moda baked goods. Kim at Bitty Bits and Pieces is giving away one of her adorable gift bags. I have entered to win!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sewing a Blue Streak!

Ten gorgeous Kaffe blue blocks finished. 60 to go. School starts in August this year. I'm trying to make one for each day and one for a day in September when I am a zombie teacher.

Monday, July 20, 2009

9-Patch A Day

I started a 9-patch project, 70 days, 70 blocks. With such a simple block, I broke into my Kaffe blues to make them special. The completed quilt will be for my room.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Where's Rusty?

Last month Rusty entered a raffle to help a sick kitty and the lucky little bugger won! Lynne, a talented quilter, finished his custom quilt and we couldn't be more thrilled. Rusty claimed it in a matter of seconds. Life is good for one spoiled cat.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

I Believe in Pillows

Cute huh? I made this for our counselor at school. She truly believes in every student and has more patience that is humanly possible. It comes from a deeper belief in a higher authority. I heart Nancy. I left the half square triangles like little pockets. I plan on making one with prairie points next.