Baby Quilt and New Grandson


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I can finally reveal the quilt that I showed you a block of several months back now that our new grandson has arrived.  (If you recall “The Nonnie” knew that it was going to be a boy but the daughter and family wanted it to be a surprise.)

Walker Reeves West was born May 21, 2013 and weighed in at 8 lbs and was 21″ long.  He is so precious and has already captured our hearts.  Walker is the name of our daughter’s best friend’s dad whose father passed away last year.   Reeves was my mother’s maiden name.  This is great grandchild #15 for my Dad.  He was there at the hospital the whole time.

Here he is a few minutes after birth (and our daughter too!)

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Mr NCC and his new grandson










Walker’s quilt.

I made the quilt using Inklingo HST.  It took me a while to get the hang of making sure the blocks were properly oriented.  The name is embroidered using the Kaleidoscope font.  I didn’t get a picture of it quilted and with the baby.  I took my camera but didn’t have the battery in it because I had taken it out  to make sure it was fully charged.  (Oops!)  I will get a good picture this weekend.









Big brother and the two big sisters  outside the state capitol on a recent visit to Austin.  The children were participating in Teen Pact which are classes at the state capitol learning about our government and government processes.  The observed our government in action debating on bills, etc.

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I have printed out shapes for my next big project and will be cutting them out in the next week as time permits.  I have the three grandchildren with me and will be taking them home this weekend and then staying with my daughter next week.

Have a wonderful Wednesday.


Sailing the Exumas


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I promised some pictures of our sailing trip to the Exumas so here goes.  We were on a 35′ Catalina with another couple ~ Captain Billy and Miss Elaine.  Bill went to high school and college with Mr. NCC.  Bill and Elaine met in college and then I came along.  Their anniversary is a month before ours.









Here is Bill, Mr. NCC and Elaine on one of our island hikes









Some of the islands we anchored off of were private islands and we were not allowed to visit.

Musha Cay is owned by David Copperfield.  There is a lovely anchorage there and we stayed one night.  A supply boat came in and left a huge shipment so we knew guests would soon be arriving.  The next morning a helicopter dropped guests off at the landing pad on the island.










About a mile from the island between Musha Cay and Rudder Cay, David Copperfield has a sunken steel grand piano with a mermaid lounging on the bench.  Mr. NCC and Billy snorkeled it.  Elaine and I viewed it through the “looky bucket”.  It is in 12-15′ of water.  The detailing is amazing.  The piano bench looks tufted.  They had on gloves and wiped some of the algae away and it was shiny.

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We also went to Big Major where there are swimming pigs.  People come to shore in their dinghy to feed and swim with them ~ not this girl!

Rudder Cay is the island owned by Faith Hill and Tim McGraw.  These caves are on their island and their house is barely visible from the water

At Hall’s Pond we saw this sailing vessel.  Hall’s is the private island of Johnny Depp.  The crew was “spit shining” the boat getting ready for visitors.  You can charter the boat and stay on the island for a handsome sum.









The guys snorkeled Thunderball Cave at Staniel Cay.  This is where films such as Ron Howard’s ‘Splash’, two James Bond movies, ‘Thunderball’ and ‘Never Say Never Again’ and also in ‘Into the Blue’, which starred Jessica Alba were made.

The best snorkeling was at the Aquarium near Fowl Cay which is a nature reserve.  There were so many fish, I felt like I was swimming in an aquarium.

We went ashore at Famer’s Cay and was lucky enough to talk a fisherman out of a Grouper which they cleaned and bagged for us (for a fee, of course!)









Mmmmm fried grouper










We also met a guy who was willing to take Mr. NCC back to Berry Island instead of us sailing all they way back to Georgetown for him to catch a flight.   He joined back up with us 5 days later to do the delivery of the boat back to Tampa.  His 1-1/2 hour skiff ride ended up taking 2 hours and 45 minutes in pretty “snotty” weather.  He rode the entire way standing up and holding on!









We also caught a mahi that fed four two meals plus another day of appetizers.  It was caught with a hand line (fishing line wrapped around a cylinder) not a fishing pole and reel.









Here is the Lobster Bill caught before we got there.  By the time we arrived lobster was forbidden to be caught.  Bill and Elaine were kind enough to save four tails that we had at two meals.  We ate very well as you can see.  The soda can in the picture gives a perspective of the size of the lobster.









These two yachts were near Staniel Cay when we arrived.  Harle and Usher were being used for the Hooter’s calendar photo shoot the day before we arrived.  Reports from other cruisers told us the girls were jumping off the boats at Thunderball cave (some topless).























Bell Island was bought in 2009-2010 by Prince Karim Aga Khan.  He is doing a major dredging in order to be able to accommodate 150 foot boats.









This is a picture of the home(s) and toys he has on the island already
















From these pictures, you probably think the Exumas is modern and “rich”.  Most of the islands we visit are just the opposite.  Many times we are the only boat and the only people on an island.  I much prefer it that way.

Mr. NCC, Billy and I delivered the boat back to Tampa.  We sailed from Saturday morning  to Monday evening nonstop.  We wanted to cross the Gulf Stream during the day.  We made it back to Tampa on Thursday evening.  During the day we had light winds which picked up at night along with the wave action.  We had one night that was a little hairy. The guys had the sails reefed in and the waves were pounding.  I did not have to do a turn at the helm that night.  They had to switch off every 30 minutes because it was so tiring battling the waves and wind.  It started about 7 pm and lasted until 2 am.   All and all I enjoyed the experience.

Well, our next trip will be in a couple weeks and we will be on this 70′ sailing yacht.


I sure hope it has electric wenches!


Remembering Fanny Tod – “Fanny Tod’s Sunflowers”


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Before I post about my adventures of a month on a sailboat, I wanted to share my finished Sunburst quilt ~ binding, label, and all.

The quilt inspiration is from the book, Quilts of Virginia, and was originally made around 1840 by Fanny Tod Noel Spindle (1816-1872).  Fanny and her husband raised seven children at Rose Cottage in Caroline County Virginia, a home that had been in the family since 1735.

My quilt contains 12 circular blocks and 12 half circular blocks sometimes called “Noonday” or Sunflowers.  They are Hand Pieced and set on point.  The Sunflowers are sashed with pinwheel blocks that extend into the border and were machine pieced.  There are 4,112 pieces in the quilt.

I started the quilt in early 2012.   I did not have a pattern for this quilt.  I used shapes and collections from Inklingo.  This is the only method I would ever use, especially for blocks that require hand piecing and curves.  Inklingo has enabled me to move to the next level in my quilting journey because of the precision it provides.   (No special tools required ~ only an ordinary inkjet printer ~ how fabulous is that!)

Fanny Tod’s Sunflowers

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Now to dig out from under piles of dirty laundry for the rest of the day!

Have a wonderful day!


Crossed the Gulf Stream


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It is nice to be in US waters again. We left the Exumas at 9am Saturday and sailed continuously til Monday night at 8pm. I had the 1am to 3am watch. Our best sailing was at night as the winds were in our favor. A good nights sleep last night and we will do continuos sailing until we reach Tampa Bay on Thursday.

We hit the fishing trifecta catching Mahi, tuna and grouper. Will post pictures when I return. It made for some excellent meals.

I finished Appliqueing my Dresden plates. I am now working on piecing Inklingo scrappy stars that I received in swaps several years ago. I have become quite efficient at hitting the crosshairs while under sail. Wind plays havoc in scattering my little Inklingo pieces but necessary to keep the sails full. It has been a wonderful month on the sailboat. I hope I dont have too difficult of a time getting my land legs back!

See you soon


Greetings from Exuma

We are having wonderful weather here in the Exumas.  The water is beautiful.  We will be bringing the sailboat back to the US next Saturday and it will take us at least 5-6 days to make the crossing. 

I am still appliqueing the dresden plates and will be working on some scrappy stars when the plates are complete.

I have some awesome pictures to share with you when I return.  The internet is very sparse.  I am currently in a laundromat doing 10 days of stinky laundry!  The good news is they have internet.

Looking forward to joining you again soon


Easter Pics and Sailing


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I managed to get a quick picture of the girls in their Easter dresses.









Here is a picture of my handsome grandson with the girls.  Unfortunately, little peanut was not in the mood for pictures and I was unable to get a good one of all three of them.









I will be taking a blogging break.  I am headed to the Exumas to do some sailing.  I will be extending my trip to help crew the sailboat back to Tampa Bay.  I have a reserved excitement regarding the return since I will be helping to crew a “crossing”.  We will be crossing the Gulf Stream and sailing 24/7.  Most of the trip we will not have land in sight.  I have sailed without seeing land before but not for an extended period.  I am calling this my trial trip to see if I am really willing to do a cross ocean sailing trip which is on my and Mr NCC’s  bucket list.  I am praying for good weather and good wind!

I didn’t have time to prep an Inklingo project so I will be taking my Grandmothers dresden plates with me.  You can read about them here.  I had enough blocks to do a quilt for both daughters.  One is assembled but the other needs work.  Just in case I get them appliquéd down over the next few weeks, I am taking some Inklingo diamonds that I received in several swaps, many eons ago.  (Thank you for the reminder, Cathi).

I will be thinking about you all when I am here………

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Digital image


Wagon Wheels to Texas My Inklingo Mystery Quilt


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It seems that many people have ancestors that picked up and moved to Texas from various  points in the United States.  Betsy Chutchian has a series of quilt books with entries from her grandmother’s journal detailing her trek to Texas.  Recently, I was reading the Preface and introduction to  the Reata cookbook by Mike Micallef.  He also has an interesting story about his relatives and how they came to Texas.

When I started the Inklingo COTSG (case of the secret garden) mystery quilt which contains “wagon wheels”, I was deeply immersed in tracing my family history on my Father’s side of the family.   I wasn’t thinking about pretty colorful gardens but rather the turning, bumpy, noisy wheels of wagons as my relatives made their way to Texas.    My Dad knows very little about his father’s family but has volumes of information on his mother’s side.  His mother started her historical sketch of the the Richardson Family like this:

“All family trees must start with someone and some place, so here and now I start with John and Mary Richardson of Christiansburg, Grayson County, Virginia”.  From Virginia, relatives moved to Tennessee and then to Texas. John and Mary were born in the mid to late 1700’s. Mary’s father is my connection to Daughters of the American Revolution. So I too, have  stories of relatives coming to Texas.

One story, which appears in the journals of many of my relatives is quite interesting and consistent.  It seems that after the  war, “marauders” would come through homesteads looking for food, livestock, and anything of value to plunder.   My xxx grandfather heard someone approaching his place and stepped outside to greet them.  His wife was inside alone.  The man assaulted my xxxgrandfather and left him for dead at the front of his homestead.  As he entered the home,  my xxxgrandmother screemed “Oh my baby, Oh my baby”.  It was rumored that if a child was present, the marauders would not cause harm to  the women.  The marauder headed for the only mule and wagon that was left on the place since others had already been through and plundered.  My xxxgrandfather had recovered from the blow and shot the man before he could take his only mule and wagon.  Afraid that the authorities would come for him, he loaded up his wife and what belongings he could in the wagon and left in the middle of the night ~ headed for Texas.

My relatives eventually settled in Kickapoo Texas where the east Texas dirt is rusty colored clay.  My people were laborers and farmers.  The rust in my quilt remind of the dirt that was undoubtedly on the spokes of their wagon wheels as they entered a new place to settle and raise their family.  They had a tough life.  I am proud they are my people ~ they were good people; honest and hardworking; morally and spiritually strong and they loved the Lord.  I enjoy seeing their world through my Dad’s eyes and through the stories that he passes on about his life and his parents life.

So here is the quilt top ~ not quite finished as I am considering several border ideas.   There is a saying “I wasn’t born in Texas but I got here as quick as I could”.









Thanks for taking this little side journey with me! Ya’all Come Back Now, ya’ hear?


New Baby Quilt ~ Adapting Inklingo


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While waiting for my daughter to return from a weekend trip to give me the hem length for the Easter dresses, I made a baby quilt for a neighbors baby that will be here in June.  She is having a boy and doing the nursery in aqua/teal and grey.  Since I normally do civil war reproduction quilts, contemporary style quilts are a little foreign to me and challenging.  I must say that the larger blocks make for quick quilts.  The design was a “Recipe” from Moda Bakeshop last week and called for Moda’s precut hexagons.  I didn’t want to use Moda’s precuts so I adapted the pattern to use Inklingo’s 3″ hexagons so I could use my own fabric choice.

It is very easy to adapt Inklingo to patterns from other designers since Inklingo shapes are given in finished sizes.  The above mentioned pattern called for precuts that were 3″ unfinished.  I printed out the Inklingo shapes and cut them on the stitching line instead of the cutting line which gave me the perfect size shape I needed.

Here is the baby quilt top.  Perfect size for a little floor nap.









I love the name.  Very close to my brother’s name which is  “Preston”.  Old family names are the best.  My younger daughter helped me decide on the banner color and monogram thread color.  I needed a young persons input.  I think it will be very cute once it is quilted.

Have a marvelous Monday.



Smocked Easter Dresses


are finished with the exception of the hem.  I am waiting on the hem length from my daughter.







Because of the amount of smocking on the collars, sleeves, and bodice, the dresses were the equivalent of doing three instead of two.  The machine stitching on the collar took over an hour for each collar.









My younger daughter usually says, “Those are the best ones yet”.  This time she said “Amazing”.  Hopefully, she will someday have a little girl so the dresses can be passed down to her.  I will post a picture of my precious granddaughters wearing the dresses after Easter.


On the quilting front, I am working on hand piecing the corners and arcs to the New York Wheel blocks that are part of the Inklingo mystery COTSG quilt.  Next week is the final clue and I will determine then whether or not I will add to the quilt.

Tomorrow I will start making the binding for the quilts I showed you in the last post and begin another baby quilt for a neighbor.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!






I’m In A Bind~

ing rut!

After I finish the Easter dresses for the girls, I need to stop all my projects (except the Inklingo COTSC mystery quilt) and get serious about binding some quilts.  I have one sleeve in one dress.  Soooo, three more sleeves, collar, buttons and buttonholes and hem and then back to quilting.  I started the dresses in what I thought was plenty of time.  Now the time has gotten away from me.

Back to the binding.  As many of you know, binding is not my favorite thing to do.  I have procrastinated long enough and must get with it.  Here is what I am talking about. All of these need binding and are large quilts with the exception of one.  After I get the binding on I will show you close up of the quilting.  Sheri Mecom is my long arm quilter.

Sherman’s March designed by Paula Barnes ~ Red Crinoline Quilts









This is Cotton Club~It was a block of the month.  Paula created this one too.









Harper’s Ferry – Red Crinoline Quilts









LeMoyne House ~ Red Crinoline Quilts.  This quilt is smaller.  I went on a quilt cruise with a friend of mine and Paula was a guest teacher.









Hi Paula! (She probably wishes she had not been my first quilt teacher~I was a pain!) I saw Paula at the Dallas Quilt Show last week.  I will show you my next Red Crinoline project next week.









This is a quilt that I made from Quilts of Virginia.  It is named “Remembering Fannie Noel Spindle Tod”; the original maker of the quilt.  I can’t imagine how she did this quilt.  I am fortunate enough to have been able to use Inklingo for all my shapes instead of templates.  The sunflowers are hand pieced and the pinwheels are machine pieced.  I will get a better picture of the overall quilt when the BINDING is on.  I think this will be the first one to get binding.









Here are a couple of close ups of the back showing the quilting


















OK, back to the Easter dresses.  Hopefully I will be able to post a picture on Monday ~ til

then  Happy Stitching