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This girl knows ALL of the cool places and must see old things!

Just get in the car with Martha – you know you are going to see wonderful old things – and she will even stop and let you take photos along the way!

Try to do this ride with menfolk?  No juice.  But Martha?  She loves to stop and wander -

And even pick up fallen apples from an ages old tree.  Heirloom apples – yummy!
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Halloween in July I can do!

Christmas can’t happen until October at least, but in the heat of July I start thinking about cooler temperatures, the first sign of leaves turning color towards golden, of pumpkin and spice flavored everything and chilly nights requiring TWO quilts on the bed instead of one in the summer.

It’s been 8 months of NO MACHINE QUILTING for me as we waited for the Quiltville Post Office to be finished.  And then POOF!  All of a sudden, faster than I could have imagined it, the stars aligned, I returned home from California and moved the machine and got it set up THE NEXT DAY.  And I’ve been pinching myself ever since.

I’ve tried to appreciate all of the small things along the way – and when looking back, I see that there have been some mighty big hunks and chunks that have fallen into place as well.

(However, contractors are NOT one of them!  They did a no-show yesterday. Sigh.)
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Friday with Ohio Stars and Abundant String Piecing!

Orca Bay from String Fling!

Yes, I know this photo is a bit blurry – we were laughing so hard I couldn’t hold the camera still!

Or maybe it’s the fact that these quilters were so pedal to the metal that the entire day passed by quick as a wink in a scrappy quilty blur.

Orca Bay brings back ALL the feels!  And not just to me – so happy to here from Theresa in Cordova Alaska who posted on Instagram that she we cheering us on, and could scarcely believe it’s been 8 years since I visited Cordova – the trip the gave me the inspiration for this quilt, standing on Theresa’s deck overlooking Orca Bay and watching that amazing Alaskan sunset.
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Oh, be still my embroidery loving heart!

Believe it or not there are things you may not know about me.

I have a passion for and am drawn to the tactile beauty of Victorian era crazy quilts and all of their beautiful stitches and embellishments.

They fascinate me! 

I just know there are are stories behind every collected piece of velvet or satin, the meanings lost after so many decades. 

I am also happy to know that there are many out there still creating beautiful works embellished with embroidery, buttons, beads and silk ribbons.
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The Quilters are busy down in Louisville!

Location?  The Drury Inn , with a spacious conference room just right for 50 of your closest quilty friends to gather and get their scrappy on!

There is something extra rewarding about extended time with folks – retreats just have a more relaxed and festive atmosphere than a “normal” workshop time period where you are trying to cram everything in to a mere 6-hour time frame.

There is time to get to know your neighbor across, behind or beside you, if you did not know them already.

I like to say that “We are only strangers once!” And it is so true when it comes to quilters.  The exchange of information, conversation, cell numbers, email addresses and social media befriending is fierce as we make plans to do this again NEXT YEAR!
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Our thanks to Karen who brought cookies!

They are all so beautiful, And tasty to boot!

This is our second annual event here in Louisville, and our location at the Drury Inn has been PERFECT in every way. 

It’s not easy to put on an event like this – find the right location with conference rooms big enough to host 50 stitchers and all of the machines, irons and other items that draw electricity.

And of course it’s Louisville – hot and humid, so the A/C must ALSO work.

We’ve been sewing in style and in comfort and loving every minute of it!
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There are some travel days where you can stop and go as you please.

And then there are some where you don’t!

My travel day to Kentucky yesterday was uneventful – and the only times my schedule allowed me to stop were for rest areas or to refuel the van.  No antique malls, no historic areas or museums or beautiful courthouse buildings -

I DROVE like a  mother trucker – Just get me to Louisville with enough time to check in to my hotel, get dinner, set up for my lecture and get it done.

Now, that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy the drive.  I LOVE to drive.  And I had all of this gorgeous scenery around me to keep my eyes dazzled.  I had an audio book with an interesting plot line (Broken Harbor by Tana French!) to keep my mind trying to figure out “Who Done It?!”

No airports.  No “Must arrive 1 1/2 hours before departure.  Must fly to Atlanta and deal with a layover.  Then fly into Louisville requiring people to pick me and all of my luggage up.”  Not to mention – I would have had to ship all of these books and other class supplies ahead.

It is a 6 1/2 hour drive from the cabin in Virginia.  It would have taken me longer than that if I had flown from Greensboro.  So driving trip it is!
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This stuff is not fun.  But so necessary!

Especially if you are headed to Africa with me in October!

Our Kenya trip is just around the corner.  Those who are traveling with me through Craftours will be receiving a letter with information regarding suggested vaccinations in August, a couple of months before we travel.

As for me – my schedule is so crazy, I am taking care if it just a bit early while I was already in town for other appointments.

(I picked up my new glasses yesterday!  WOW!  What a difference an updated prescription makes!)

You can ask your regular doctor’s office if they do the vaccinations in house, or they may refer you to a travel clinic specializing in what is needed for far away places.
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Untouched and no filters!

i am always receiving questions such as: "Just what do you DO with all of your quilts?”

I honestly think that most folks forget this is my job. And without all of these quilts I wouldn’t be able to do my job.

Because I teach and I lecture I need these quilts on hand. I will decide what to do with them after I retire. When people ask me questions like this I don't know whether to be cautious as if being judged, feel guilty, or turn it around and ask them what they do with theirs.

What are they exactly trying to say when they ask me questions like this?  Has anyone asked you this?  And how do you reply?

Is there such a thing as too many quilts?

And is it rude to ask someone what they are doing or intend to do with all of their quilts (Or fill in the blank….Shoes? Purses? Jewelry? Cats? Nick knacks?

Does the world outside these walls really need to know?
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This was my late Sunday afternoon pleasure -

Lisa trundled out the door on down the road 100 miles home to Winston Salem at the same time we headed just a mere 1/2 mile down the road to Jean & Gordon’s.

I had met Jean the first time I attended the Third-Thursday breakfast meet up, and after visiting just a bit we KNEW we had to get our menfolk to meet each other.  We’d planned for weeks, but either one of us or the guys were out of town – but yesterday afternoon – Jack Pot!

They talked of tractors and diggers and dump trucks while we talked of flowers, gardening, and our love of wandering second hand thrift places and where the good ones are to go.

We hiked up their mountain road – steeper than ours, or is it just longer?  And wiled away a good portion of the afternoon.  So great to know people so very close!

In between rounds of ever-present rainfall I headed on over to the Quiltville Post Office to trim up the Fireweed quilt, and prepare a binding.
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