Monday, November 30, 2009

M's Quilting Inspirations

Don't you love visiting quilt shops as you travel? I think it's especially fun to find a great shop as I'm driving through a little town, en route to my final destination.
Last week, as I was driving from Las Vegas to Phoenix, I stopped in Wickenburg, Arizona and visited M's Quilting Inspirations.
Wickenburg is a small cowboy town, located 60 miles NW of Phoenix. With a population of around 6,000, Wickenburg is surrounded by the Sonoran Desert.

Store owner Marilyn Williams has been in business for 5 years, but recently purchased a new building that she has fixed up for her shop at 1141 W. Wickenburg Way.
(928) 684-6353
Marilyn was so friendly and welcoming. The place was buzzing the day I was there. A lot of people stopped by as they were driving through, just like me.

The shop has quite a few rooms, and a wide variety of fabrics.

Great selection of patterns.

The Seasonal Room. Wonderful ideas for Christmas and other holidays, plus a large area of Civil War fabrics.

The kitchen was bright and cheery with a lot of vintage. Marilyn even had refreshments on the counter. A very inviting store.

Many of the quilts on display are from their class schedule.

I thought this art quilt was so unique, in that it used a chenille technique.

Marilyn is a Superior Threads customer, so of course I had to check out her thread displays.
I drive to Phoenix often, and will definitely make this stop when ever I can.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Costa Vida

Our SIL owns the Costa Vida's in the Phoenix area, and when we are in town we must get our "Costa-Fix".
I love their food. How I wish there was a Costa Vida in St. George.

Everything is made fresh that day, and they pride themselves in cooking healthy.
I love everything on their menu, but I admit I do have a few favorites.
My #1 choice is their salads. Although today I had a fish taco and it was right up there in the "double yum" category.
They make the best chips and queso I've ever had. My SIL's family made some at home last night, and the party came to a complete stop while we all devoured huge bags of chips dipped in the hot cheese mixture. Even the small children stopped their running around, and plopped themselves down where ever they could find a place to have chips and queso.
My favorite dessert of all time is their flan. I sometimes sample other restaurants version of flan, and have so far not found any that even begin to compare.

Our son-in-law Daniel Dayton. We call him Dano because he is Daniel Dayton II.
Dano just opened the Costa Vida in Queen Creek this last year:
21152 E. Rittenhouse Rd. #102, QC, AZ 85242 (480) 888-7230

Isaak refers to his dad's restaurant as "Toasta Beeda".

Meanwhile at home, Dano and Amy are enjoying their new daughter who I am proud to announce only wakes up at night for a brief feedings and then go promptly back to sleep.
We are all IN LOVE.

Friday, November 27, 2009

With A Name Like Cactus Needle...

With a name like Cactus-Needle, it's only natural that we would want to take our grandsons on a hike with a lot of "big cactus" as Isaak likes to say.

This afternoon we went on the San Tan Mountain Regional Park trails in Queen Creek, Arizona.

Even though it's almost December, we had perfect weather with the temps in the 80's.
When ever I come to this part of Arizona, I feel like I have entered the true wild, wild West.

The boys are so happy to be with their Papa, and vice versa.
I'm a happy mom to be able to visit with my two oldest daughters. Aubrey had the day off from work today so she could come on the hike with us.

Look how huge this Ocilllo plant has grown out in the desert. Paul is about 6 feet tall in comparison.

Teddy Bear Cholla

Isaak has been a very strong hiker from the time he learned to walk.

Noah wanted to pick up every rock on the trail.

Club Cholla
These plants are very prickly. If you touch one, they immediately imbed in your skin and it is quite difficult to pull them out.

Some have asked how I came up with the name of Cactus Needle for my blog. Mr. Cactus actually helped me think of the name. I wanted something that combined living in Southern Utah and my love of quilting.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

She's Here!

She's here! Kayla Olivia finally made her appearance on Wednesday November 25th at 12:56 pm. She weighed in at a whopping 8.3 lbs.

Except for the button nose from my SIL's family, I think she looks a lot like her mother when she was a newborn.
Things are so different from the time when my children were born. Mom and baby came home after 24 hours, just in time for Thanksgiving dinner.
Big brother Isaak, age 4, was so happy to welcome a new little sister.
Noah, at 22 months, missed his mother and wasn't too sure about that thing his Aunt Aubrey was holding.
My daughter Amy is such a trouper.
Even though Kayla made her appearance a little late, my daughter still wanted us to go ahead and have Thanksgiving dinner (for 26 people!) at her house as previously planned. My SIL's family was in town from Utah and they did the largest part of the cooking. Amy wasn't allowed to do anything but take care of the baby, and we all took various parts of the meal.
It was wonderful to be together.

Paul was great to help make the traditional Cookie Turkey's as a craft project with the small children.

Aubrey ran a 10K race early this morning.

With a house full of people, and a lot of little children running around, Noah managed to be the life of the party. He kept taking his clothes off during dinner. We all teased that someday when he grows up he will probably be known as "That crazy Uncle Noah", and be remembered as the guy who never wore a shirt.
He doesn't sit still for long. He wanted down from the dinner table and ran off to play with his cousins.
The next thing we knew he was back on the scene, wearing his cousin Sophie's skirt, and someone else's flip flops.
The entire room started laughing so hard we had tears rolling down our cheeks.
That crazy Noah.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

No Baby Yet, But Almost

I drove to Phoenix today. No baby yet but almost.
I was greeted at the door by my two grandsons who jumped in my arms and clung to me. I told my daughter that I didn't even need to come into the house. I would be happy just to stay on the step and hold those two little boys for hours.
I will be here for at least a week, and I plan on smooshing their little faces off.

My daughter has always felt very strongly about having a natural experience when she delivers her children. She has tried everything under the sun the last week to get this little one to come on her own.
Amy's doctor encouraged her to come in tonight to be induced. Guess what time her appointment is?

"3 a.m."
Huh? My guess it has something to do with the fact that the doctors and nurses want to be home with their families by Thursday afternoon for Thanksgiving dinner.
Can't say as I blame them. And I guess it's normal for them to deliver babies during the middle of the night.
But to schedule 3 a.m.??
Putting things in perspective, as long as mom and baby are healthy, the other details really don't matter that much.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Satchels Finished

"Satchels" is now finished.

Every basket or "satchel" is made from Kaffe Fasset fabrics.

This quilt is a combination of many different patterns. The main inspiration came from a quilt I saw on Tonye Belinda Phillips web site. Unfortunately she doesn't have a pattern for her quilt. Some of the basket shapes came from Tonye's students. The other basket shapes were found in the book "Farmhouse Quilters Companion" by Barbara Brandeburg.

The border inspiration came from a another basket type quilt I saw in Freddy Moran's book "Collaborative Quilting"

One of the things I wanted to include to make this quilt unique was to add Texture Magic intermittently on some of the circles and baskets.

I used decorative threads to stitch the Texture Magic in place.
For most of the circles and baskets I used King Tut by Superior Threads. One of the reasons I love King Tut is because it's a cotton, 40 weight thread, so it's a little heavier and shows up well. The sections are variegated in 4 colors that change every inch.

Up close the colors in this basket were so beautiful. Love those Kaffes.

I used different stitching patterns on each basket. For this one I did a cross hatch.


1/4th inch grids

Each Satchel's block measured 6" finished.

The finished quilt measured 58 1/2" X 72"

It's now off to the quilter, and I'm so excited to see how it will turn out once she puts her imagination to the design.