Little Penguin Quilts Through the Year

Little Penguin Quilts Through the Year

Friday, May 31, 2024

Ending May, Beginning June

The end of May took me by surprise this year!   Where did the month go?  Maybe I say that every month - the days and weeks sure seem to go by fast!   I finished out May in my sewing room by completing the monthly Table Scraps Challenge that I always participate in.  This is hosted by The Joyful Quilter - check out more fun small, scrappy projects at the link.

This month our challenge was to make something with pink scraps with a theme of the Kentucky Derby.  Okay - pink I've got covered.  The Kentucky Derby - ???  I started with one last orphan block from the 2020 Color Challenge that never got used up.

This is pink - very pink - too much pink for me!

So I decided to cut the 12.5 inch square into smaller squares, like this:

To connect with those pretty yellow birds (remember those birds - they're important later in the post!) in the pink print, I decided to add some yellow strips to these squares, and came up with this design:

A little more yellow, some quilting and binding, and voila!

This measures 12 x 16, so fits perfectly right here!

So this contains plenty of pink, but what about the Kentucky Derby?
Well, I googled "birds at the Kentucky Derby" (remember the birds in the pink print?) and came up with a horse named Mine that Bird who won the race in 2009, who has a great story.  You can read about it here:
I know, it's a bit of a stretch, but it's my story and I'm sticking to it!  😜

To begin June, I got out my light blue scraps and started cutting squares and making HSTs for a light blue patchwork heart.  More on that next week!

Sharing at Joyful Quilter's May Table Scraps link-up 
And at SoScrappy for ScrapHappy Saturday.

Wednesday, May 29, 2024

I Like Thursday #389

Over the Memorial Day weekend, we had a chance to go to our favorite park where we can see the yellow-headed blackbirds.  It's a yearly quest for us, so I've posted photos of them many times, but they are such beautiful birds that I can't resist.  Besides, it's almost like they're posing for us!

This time of year, they are nesting in the reeds, and the males make quite a distinctive noise to let you know this is their territory!

And, then, as often happens when you are birdwatching, some other people came along and said "if you really want to see some birds," go to another reservoir on the other side of town.  And, of course, we had to go!  This was a place with lots of water birds, and the Avocets were nesting there.  Fun to see!

I finished stitching my latest berry design from Melisa.  This was such a fun one!  It reminds me of my daily bowl of breakfast cereal with strawberries on it.  Yum!

I've been reading this book - almost done with it.  This is the June book for my book club discussion.  It's a good one - we'll have lots to talk about!

The first ladies are Eleanor Roosevelt and Mary McLeod Bethune, who I knew nothing about.  But they were friends and accomplished a lot together!

LeeAnna's question of the week is about wearing white only after Memorial Day - do we stick to that rule?  And my answer is that I don't own anything white, lol!  I'm a terrible spiller, and will inevitably get something on myself, especially if I'm wearing something white.  But I did catch our cute weather person wearing a pretty white dress on Monday, which was Memorial Day.  I think she brought out her white dress just to celebrate the unofficial start of summer!

And it has felt like summer around here this week - shorts and flip flop weather!
I like that!

Joining in with I Like Thursday at Not Afraid of Color.

Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Midweek Update

on Paducah Stars (which is my name for my version of Luminous Layers, the design by Sandra at mmmquilts that is the Spring QAL).

Monday afternoon... halfway there!

Tuesday afternoon... sewing, sewing, sewing.

And not too long after that photo was taken, I had a finished quilt top!

I've got backing fabric ordered, and 
hopefully it's coming soon, so I can finish this up.
But I'm happy for now just to have the piecing finished!

Linking up with Quiltfabrication for Midweek Makers.
Finished or Not Friday at Alycia Quilts.

Saturday, May 25, 2024

More with strawberries...

This week, I stitched up the May heart for the "Year of Hearts" SAL at PinkernPunkin Quilting.   Strawberries right out of the garden - yum!

I also finished the little Berries stamp into a pillow for the wooden bowl.  It's so cute!

But you know I couldn't stop there!  I started another strawberry-themed cross-stitch from Melisa's collection, "Strawberries and Cream."

There's a big milk jug still to be stitched, 
and that's what I'll be working on today for my 
Slow Sunday Stitching!

Linking up with Kathy's Quilts.

Friday, May 24, 2024

This and that...

My quilty week took me in all kinds of different directions, which can be fun or frustrating, depending on what you actually want to accomplish!

The main goal was to finish the medium star blocks for the Luminous Layers QAL, and I did do that!  Last week, when I was wondering what color to name this dark pink that they are made from, Sylvia suggested raspberry, and that fits for me.

I haven't had a chance to lay these out with the other sections of the quilt,
but I'm excited to do that.  And it's time to sew them all together, too. 

Along the way, I got two new blocks made for the Pieces of My Life QAL, and one is even pink!  Since the pink scraps are still out, it was easy to cut what was needed for the bowtie block.

More about this project in my Wednesday post.

Here's where my Hollow 9 patch blocks stand at almost the end of May.  These are hand-pieced, and I've just been making two each month.  I'm almost caught up with the green ones from January - just one more block to sew.

And, inspired by Melisa's sweet little Pat-a-Cake quilt that she shared the other day, I cut some 2 x 3.5 pieces from strips that I had, and started piecing these little bits.  Not sure what they'll turn into, but they make good leaders and enders!

Sharing at SoScrappy for ScrapHappy Saturday.
Sew and Tell Monday at Melva Loves Scraps 

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

I Like Thursday #388

Good morning!  Have you had your coffee yet?  That is the first thing I do when I get up in the morning - turn on the coffee pot.  When the coffee is ready to pour, I open up the newspaper app on my tablet and read the day's news while I sip.  The only thing that could make this better is a homemade treat to go with the coffee!

After so many years of getting up early to get to work, I still wake up early, but
I'm so happy to not have anywhere to be first thing in the morning!

Things are growing around here.  I have all the garden plants in, and they seem to be happy.  This pretty yellow columbine surprised us with a bunch of blooms this year.  We used to have a whole section of the garden devoted to columbine, but they all died out except for this one.

I finished a really good book this week, The Lost Apothecary.  It's historical fiction, but different from what I usually read.  In this story, the historical character lives in London in the late 1700s.  She is an apothecary who helps women in all kinds of ways - some of which are against the law!  There is also a modern day character who tries to learn more about this apothecary.  Interesting story!

We watched the final episode of "The Good Doctor" last night - they did a good job ending it.  I'm sad that it's over - it was a good show!  Glad we discovered it a few months ago.

Have a great day, friends!  
Joining in with I Like Thursday at Not Afraid of Color.

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Pieces of My Life QAL

Three little girls with matching outfits - I think this had to be Easter around 1961 or so.  I'm sure we were all dressed up to go to church that morning.  My mom was quite a seamstress well up into her 80s, and she made all our clothes - including my wedding dress and a suit for Mike!  

We did go to church regularly - Aldersgate Methodist Church in Greece, NY.  All my friends went there, too, and participated in the youth groups and Girl Scouts which also met there.   My favorite service always was the candlelight service on Christmas Eve.  Then we went home to open one gift, and my dad would read A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens.  My dad loved Charles Dickens - we kids, not so much!  

This week's blocks for the Pieces of My Life QAL at Melva Loves Scraps are an Ohio Star and a bowtie block, to represent the Christmas star and little boys dressed up in bowties.  My brother wasn't around yet in the above photo, but I know there are photos with him wearing a bowtie somewhere!  I sewed these blocks both up yesterday, and they went together easily.

Even though these are technically blocks 7 and 8, I only have six done so far.  There are two other six inch blocks which I have put off making, but need to go back and do.  I wasn't sure if I would need them at first, but I do want to follow Melva's directions for a Quilt-As-You-Go finish, and the smaller blocks are part of that.  They shouldn't be hard to get caught up on.

Sharing at Melva Loves Scraps and
Quiltfabrication for Midweek Makers.
Finished or Not Friday at Alycia Quilts 

Saturday, May 18, 2024

Strawberry Stitching

Most of my slow stitching this week has involved strawberries - cross-stitched and embroidered.

The little Berries stamp is finished.  This is one of Melisa's designs, and she has more, so I'll be starting another one soon! 

And I'm also continuing on with Melisa's Year of Hearts QAL, working on the May heart.  I got the fabric prepped, traced, and colored in, and a few stitches done.

That's what I'll be working on for my Slow Sunday Stitching!
Linking up with Kathy's Quilts.

Friday, May 17, 2024

Paducah Stars

I've been able to focus my sewing time this week on the small and medium stars for Luminous Layers - Sandra's Spring QAL at mmmquilts.  I think I'm going to call mine Paducah Stars because I bought all the fabric at Hancock's of Paducah when we visited there in April.   This dark pink is a big part of this section of the quilt.  What color would you call it?

Fuschia?  Cerise (which I guess is the name for a cherry shade of pink)?

I'm still working on the small stars (they require lots of little 1.5 inch pieces!), but couldn't resist making one of the medium stars to see how they go together.

All laid out:

Can I sew it together without flipping any pieces?


The bottom right piece is 1/4 of the center star, 
and it's surrounded by dark blue star points.  
Stars within stars!

One more small star, and three more medium stars left to do.  It's getting there!

Sharing at SoScrappy for ScrapHappy Saturday.

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

I Like Thursday #387

Good morning! 
This beautiful Western Tanager visited our yard a few times earlier this week.
We sure enjoyed seeing him!

It's planting season here, finally!  I got flowers in pots and a few veggies planted, too.  I'm a small scale gardener - mostly planting for color and a little for eating fresh out of the garden.

When we went to the garden center to get the veggie plants, I saw this cute display!  All those eyes!

We've been having some rain showers off and on, too, which is always good for the growing things.  One late afternoon storm resulted in this double rainbow!

For Mother's Day, I took some frozen ice cream cones to my mom's place and we all enjoyed them - even some of the other ladies who live there and the staff.  These are Mom's favorite treat lately!

LeeAnna's question of the week is about lessons from our childhood and how they've impacted our view of the world.  That made me think about my dad - he always said that "you get out of something what you put into it."  I think of that as advice to put your whole heart into everything you do - school, work, family, home.  So that is how I've tried to live my life!

Have a great rest of the week, friends!
Joining in with I Like Thursday at Not Afraid of Color.


Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Midweek Update

From big pieces to small... after making a bunch of 8.5 inch HSTs and squares for the outer sections of my version of Luminous Layers, this week we switched to 1.5 inch squares and HSTs.

I need four of the yellow and dark pink star blocks (so two more to make), and the green sections with light pink background will eventually make the center star.  I've circled them in the diagram below.

Along the way, I started sewing the larger pieces together into rows as leaders and enders.  After laying out what had been sewn yesterday afternoon, I took this photo and kept thinking that something looked wrong in the layout.

Oh - oops!  The row with the blue section is sewn together all wrong...
I guess I'll be having a date with the seam ripper this afternoon!

Here's how it's supposed to look:

Sandra always releases the next step on Wednesdays, and I'm thinking that this week we'll be finishing up that small star section, and getting the whole top together.  Time to finish up the last two dark pink stars so that I can move on!


Saturday, May 11, 2024

Two Small Finishes

I realized this week that I had some stitched up designs that needed to be finished into the little pillows that I like to fill my wooden bowl with.  So, a little pressing and a little sewing and a little stuffing and voila!  Baby birds in their nest and a robin and tulip mini sampler.

Here's my bowl all filled with Spring designs, thanks to my friend, Melisa, at PinkernPunkin Quilting and Stitching!

So that means I can start something new, right?!  All you see so far is the outline for the new piece, but it will eventually be Berries, another little design by Melisa.  She's sharing a whole series of strawberry stamps which will be fun to stitch!

So that's what I'll be working on for my slow Sunday Stitching!
Linking up with Kathy's Quilts.


Friday, May 10, 2024

Pink and more pink

I decided to add a little bit more pink to my stash this week.   Since I was planning to use pink in the most recent block for the Pieces of My Life QAL, I figured there would be scraps left for a few RSC blocks! 

That pretty swirly piece on the left had a great selvage!  I decided I had to keep this one.

For Rainbow Scrap Challenge projects this week, I added a couple more zipper blocks to the collection.  


And more pink...

The other four blocks were made last year.

Here's the group I've made - just four more needed and then I'll be sewing them into a top.

Sharing at SoScrappy for ScrapHappy Saturday.