Monday, September 27, 2010

Oh. My. Baby Pug.

Pug and I just got back from a visit to the alma mater. There was a puppy party for students who miss their dogs (or just like them). Pug was so popular! He was the only pug there and he got so much love from the students. Most of the comments were in the range of, "Oh my gosh. He is the CUTEST pug ever!" Um, I did overhear someone say, "He's a nice dog. He just doesn't have a face." To which I didn't take offense, but hear me out. Pug does have a face, it's just squashed. Anyhoo, I met a few students who were ardent pug enthusiasts as well and we got to talking about baby pugs! I happened to meet some adorable baby pugs at Pacific Pug Rescue's recent event. Here's one of the pugs asleep on the nice gentleman who sat at our table.

One pug is good for now. Pug likes being an only pug.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

A Few Of My Favorite Things

With no further ado, here are a few of my favorite things, in no particular order:

fall (photo taken at Minnewaska State Park)


sort-of hidden staircases that you find while you're out walking


old stone walls (photo taken on Block Island)



dessert. pretty teacups.  together is best.

reflections in the water

snow. i've missed it ever since leaving new york (photo taken from old home in ny)

and my most favorite of all...

Monday, September 20, 2010

Felt Ornaments

I'm not usually one to think about Christmas in September, but I am because I saw the cutest felt ornament craft kits over on Alicia Paulson's blog, Posie Gets Cozy.  I don't know about you, but sitting around making little felt trees and mittens sounds like the best thing ever.
I got "Walk In The Woods" and "Ice-Skating Afternoon" but I'm seriously considering getting "Snow Day" as well.  The only thing keeping me is that I need to relearn how to knit (for the polar bear's scarf).  And I do want to be knitting again.

The kits come with everything you need to make them.  It sounds like they'll also be available as downloadable pdfs (cheaper) at some point.  Cuteness!  Once I get the hang of these, I might try making my own designs.  I would love to make a felt pug ornament!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Crazy Nine Patch Lattice Quilt Part I

I'm taking a quilting class over at Modern Domestic taught by Elizabeth Hartman of the cute quilt blog Oh, Fransson!  It's my first quilt class ever, and we're making the Crazy Nine Patch Lattice Quilt of Elizabeth's design. I think it's so cute.

First I spent what felt like (and may well could have been) hours cutting fabric and getting it ready.  I got a 12 1/2 x 12 1/2 size ruler, which is so far turning out to be extremely useful.

This is an interesting quilt to make.  Instructions are on Elizabeth's blog, and as my husband pointed out when I explained to him how it worked, the method is a little bit like a rubik's cube.

I love this fabric combo.  It's so cheery to look at.

Here you can see it coming along.  The quilt's starting to look a little crazy, in a good way!

The project involves cutting through 9 layers of fabric, which by the time you have already sewn a few seams, can be tough cutting through.  Scissors were employed as well.

After they're done, the next step was squaring them up.  Elizabeth illustrated a good way to do this using one of my blocks.

Here are two finished blocks created by a friendly classmate. It's so much fun to see the fabrics other people pick out, and I can't wait to see how all of our quilts will look.

And here are four of my blocks.  I have nine total, and my homework for the week is to do this two more times so I have twenty seven in all.

In Pug news, he is really quite fond of sleeping on our clothes. Well, that's not really news, but it is a cute picture!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Fabric Smörgåsbord

Two things I've got a lot of around here: fabric and zucchini.  It's a veritable smorgasbord of cotton and squash.  What to do with them all...

Well, my plans for the fabric involve more quilts!  I've started one quilt at home (mostly using French General's "Rural Jardin"), and I'll be starting another one tomorrow in a quilt class.  I'll post pictures from the quilt class later this week.

For now, here's what I was up to with the Rural Jardin quilt.  It's always so much fun choosing the fabrics and laying them out in different patterns.

This is what I decided on.  Not all the squares fit on the table, but you get the idea.

As for the abundance of zucchini, we have had sauteed zucchini, zucchini fritters (or pancakes), and my favorite, zucchini bread.

Pug is a big fan of zucchini pancakes and bread.  I'm not surprised.  What is surprising is that he likes catnip.

Who knew?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Pretty Little Mini Quilt

I spent last week making this quilt to donate to Pacific Pug Rescue's 2nd annual benefit and silent auction:

Some lucky pug is going to be sleeping on this quilt someday soon!  The pattern is from the book Pretty Little Mini Quilts, and the design is called "Spinning in Orbit".  It was so much fun to make!  First I started off by choosing my fabrics, pressing and cutting them, and sewing them together.

Next, I hand-appliquéd circles I cut out from the same fabric onto the quilt.  This was very time consuming.

This is my favorite fabric combo from the quilt: the green polka dots and the strawberries (strawberry fabric is from the Meadowsweet Collection by Sandi Henderson and can be found here, though mine is a slightly different color).

After I sewed all the circles on, it was time to make the quilt sandwich and begin quilting!

I hand-quilted, which again, was time consuming, but well worth it.

I love the tree fabric! I think I bought it at Cool Cottons, but you can find it online here.

Upclose view of the quilting:

The hand-quilting took some getting used to.  It was a little difficult to make the stitches even on the front and back of the quilt.  I used a large polka dot fabric for the back of the quilt, and quilted around six or eight of the circles.

Sewing the binding on:

I mitered the corners and they turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself!  This being the third quilt I've made, I've noticed that my corners have gotten much better each time.

Last step: I slip stitched the back of the binding onto the back of the quilt.

Ta-da!  A close-up of one section of the quilt.

Here's the back of the quilt.

All in all, I loved making this quilt.  It wasn't too difficult, and I think anyone who's tried out one simple quilt could certainly make this one.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Pacific Pug Rescue

Pacific Pug Rescue's 2nd annual benefit is coming up on September 18th, and with it, a raffle drawing for a vacation on the French Riviera (not airfare though) and to raise money for homeless pugs. The dinner event registration is closed, but you can still get tickets for the raffle. You don't need to be there to win! And you don't need to live in Portland to win! I purchased three tickets, and I know Pug is excited about the chance to go to France! Or at least, to get a French souvenir.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Pug At The Ocean

It's a gray, drizzly Portland morning. Pug is fast asleep on his chair (well, on the footstool) and I'm drinking a cup of tea. Good Earth "sweet and spicy" is my favorite tea of all time. When I was a little kid and we went to Cost Plus, I always loved getting a little sample of their sweet and spicy tea in the back of the store. I also love Hobees cinnamon orange tea. Drinking spicy tea is the best way to wake up. Pug, however, has no intention of waking up.

Here are a few more pictures from our recent trip to the Oregon coast.