Out to Sea Bed Quilt

I’m excited to have this quilt to share in the Blogger’s Quilt Festival this fall!  I entered mine in the bed quilts group.


As soon as I saw Sarah Jane’s Out to Sea fabric, I pinned a picture of the collection and knew that I wanted to make a big quilt for my daughter’s bed out of it.  I loved the color way with the navy blue and hot pink because the pink worked perfectly with the princesses already on the wall and I’m trying to impart my love of navy blue to my daughter.

Before I could even get my hands on the fabric, I searched the internet for inspiration on how I would put the quilt together.  I decided on a patchwork quilt with some larger panel pieces added to it.  I love the world maps and I knew that I wanted them to be somewhat of a focus in the quilt.  (I love them so much that I have a few panels still waiting to be turned into pillows for this bed.)


So far this is the largest quilt I have made.  It comes out to about 88 x 88.  It fits perfectly on her full sized bed and if we ever upgrade to a larger bed for her I think it will still work well.


I had two ideas for the quilting.  One was diagonal lines through the blocks and the other was wavy quilting.  I actually quilted a diagonal line halfway through the quilt to see if I liked it and then a wavy line.  I think I would have liked the diagonal but it seemed like a lot more work and after finally having it all pieced, I didn’t have the patience to mark my diagonal lines on such a big quilt.  So,
I quilted it with wavy lines from Bijou Lovely’s tutorial.  It seemed appropriate considering the nautical theme.  It was tough going…my tension seemed to get off and I had to redo the first couple of waves.  And if there’s anything that makes me procrastinate on sewing something, it’s knowing that I have to pull out the seam ripper.  So the quilt sat for quite a while until I finally decided to get on with it!


The other hard part of this quilt was taking pictures!  Don’t mind the carpet that I tried to roll out of the way in the picture below.  I was able to stand on the balcony in my house and take a picture looking down on it.  I tried to hang it from the balcony but I didn’t have strong enough clips to hold it up.


The backing fabric is a dark grey sheet that I got from Target and the binding is a solid coral color that matched the coral blocks in the quilt.

This will probably always be one of my favorite fabric lines and I’m so glad I was able to turn it into my vision for a bed quilt and that my daughter is snug and cozy under it each night!  Now I just need to get rid of some brown curtains that don’t match (not shown) and sew up those pillows.

Thanks for stopping by!

Fall Break – St. Louis

Last week the kids had a week off from school for fall break.  We didn’t have any big plans at first but then we decided on a few days in St. Louis.  I figured I might be ready to get out of the house by Thursday!

We left Memphis Thursday morning and made it to St. Louis for lunch.  Then we went to the City Museum.  This museum made me wish I could be a kid again.  I don’t think I could have imagined a playground better than this.  I can’t even come up with the words to describe it but it was a really fun combination of tunnels, slides, hidden passageways, and ladders.  We stayed until closing time and the kids weren’t anywhere near bored.  We almost missed a whole section of the museum (with a 10 story slide!) that was in a cave like area that we hadn’t explored yet.  When we left, Casey said it was the most awesome place she had been.

View of city from top of City Museum

On Friday, we explored downtown St. Louis and the Gateway Arch.  We couldn’t go up in the Arch because it was shutdown with the government but it’s pretty amazing to just look at it from within the beautiful park surroundings.  You could also walk right down to the edge of Mississippi River which turned out to be pretty fun for the kids.  They were pretty happy to throw sticks in the river and play in the random bits of sand.  Even I was excited to actually put my hand in the mighty Mississippi.

At the base of the Arch
Touching the Mississippi River
Getting ready to build a raft a la Tom Sawyer
Had to find a bigger stick than Jack’s
Red fountains near stadium
Next we toured Busch Stadium, home of the St. Louis Cardinals.  I wouldn’t say this was the kids’ favorite part, but it was fun to check out the dugout and all the posh places people with the good tickets can hang out.  We learned quite a bit of team history and St. Louis has a lot of pride in their baseball past.  

We originally wanted to go to St. Louis in the summer and catch a Cardinals game while we were there.  (Pat generally likes to plan our trips around sports events.)  Since it was post season, we didn’t think we were going to catch a game this trip.  But…turns out the Cards made it to the NLCS and the first game was in St. Louis on Friday night.  After our stadium tour, we could see fans starting to stream into the city with their red shirts.  And also after our stadium tour, Pat wanted to see this game more than ever.  There were scalpers on every corner but Pat was able to get two pretty good tickets for him and Jack through the Cardinals ticket site on game day.

We headed to the St. Louis Zoo in the afternoon but the kids were tired so it was a quick trip.  They seemed to have plenty of energy for the pool after though.

Baby elephant bum in the middle

I promised Casey that she and I would go on a date and go shopping if Pat & Jack went to the game.  She had fallen in love with a cute little Cardinals shirt and skirt in the team store so I told her we’d find an outfit on our date.  Even when it was possible that Pat could get four tickets, Casey wanted to go on our date instead.  We went to Trader Joe’s, World Market and then Target.  Casey loved looking at all the clothes and I loved some of the bargains we found.


Pat and Jack ended up at the longest League Championship Series game ever!  They didn’t get back to the hotel until 1am…but they had a blast.  Pat said there was an 11 year old boy beside them and he and Jack became fast friends and helped each other stay up so late.  It was an awesome experience for both Pat and Jack.  Jack wanted to know if we could fly to Los Angeles to watch Game 3.

When we left town on Saturday morning, Casey was crying she was so sad to leave.  Our hotel turned out to be great – the Drury Inn Union Station.  It had free breakfast and dinner, was only a mile from downtown and was right beside the beautiful Union Station.  We could see the old train tracks out our window.  (Also, I was impressed that our room had windows on 2 sides…we had a great corner room.)

On our way out of town, we stopped at Grant’s Farm and saw some Clydesdale horses, fed some camels and enjoyed the tram ride around the park.


Pete the Cat Visits Casey

Casey came home from school on Friday a couple weeks ago and excitedly told me she was Star of the Week for the next week.  She came with a bag that contained Pete the Cat, his journal, and a Marvelous Me binder…and instructions on how to be the Star of the Week.  Pete the Cat is a character in a series of books that Casey’s teacher loves and luckily it was a stuffed animal version of the cat that came home, and not a real cat named Pete.

We had to make a poster all about Casey, take Pete the Cat around all weekend while journaling his activities and get ready for Show’n’Tell on Friday.  I also got to go read her class a book and have lunch with her one day.

On Sunday afternoon before her special week, I got to work on my homework…I cut out clip art for the poster, found pictures of Casey and wrote in Pete’s journal.  Casey was pretty specific in how she wanted the poster put together, so she did all the glueing and I did some picture captions for her.

Then we realized that we didn’t exactly take Pete out to all our weekend events.  I believe he languished somewhere in her bedroom for most of the weekend.  After reading the previous two entries in his journal, I tried to spice it up a bit and write from Pete’s perspective.  (And make excuses for his absence at a few events.)  I’m not sure if I got his personality right or not since I haven’t actually read any of the books but he seems like he should be a pretty funny cat.

With the help of a newsletter template in my word processing program I made a fun little journal entry and added some pictures.  Here is the text since I couldn’t figure out how to get a PDF on here…

I had a fun and busy adventure with Casey’s family this past weekend!  Casey was so excited to bring me home and told her mom that she had to take me everywhere this weekend.  
First though, she tested to see if I still had some of my nine lives left by tossing me over the balcony to her mom downstairs.  They did that a few times but luckily I’m a pretty tough cat and it was kind of fun.
Apparently I just missed the tooth fairy by a night.  Casey was very excited about the new hole in her mouth.  I’m kind of glad though because I don’t know how a run-in with the tooth fairy would go.   
On Friday night, Casey & her brother took me to a sleepover at their friends’ house.  The girls made a whole bunch of friendship bracelets and they even made one for me!  Then they tried to keep me up way past my bedtime, but if there’s one thing cats are good at, it’s sleeping and taking naps.  I curled up and went to sleep while they talked and talked and talked.
Saturday was a beautiful day in Tennessee and Casey and her family headed to a fall fair.  I stayed home to nap because I heard there would be bouncy houses – cat claws and inflatables don’t mix very well.  I heard it was a lot of fun with bouncing, games and candy.  
On Saturday evening, the Eliasons had neighborhood friends over for dinner.  It was taco night, so I helped myself to the buffet.  Casey and I played and had a great time with Camryn (who used to be in Mrs. Waller’s class 2 years ago).  
After church on Sunday, Casey showed me everything she had done in Sunday school.  I got to sit on the counter and hang out with her and no one even yelled at me to get down or worried about cat hair in their food.   
Casey had to get to work on her Star of the Week poster.  She told her mom just how she wanted things and they worked on it together.  
Then the Philadelphia Eagles came on TV and they taught me a new chant – E – A – G – L – E – S Eagles!  I’m not sure I can get behind this team because I think an eagle could snatch me right off the ground if one ever wanted to.   I’m more of a Bengals fan…at least they’re family.
On Sunday night everyone needed to get a good night of sleep and get ready for a new week of school, including me.  They tried to make me take a bath but I let them know that I do NOT take baths!  Other than that, it was a great weekend with Casey and her family!

Spider Night

Casey was supposed to be in the bath and Jack was drying off after his (too) quick shower.  Pat and I were trying to have one of those things called an uninterrupted conversation in the kitchen.  Jack came in to the kitchen jabbering about a spider.  Casey was yelling from the bathroom that she KNEW it was a spider because it had 8 legs and she had just learned all about that in school.

Is it in the bathtub with you Casey?  No, then take your bath.  Jack, go get your clothes on.  I told them spiders eat other bugs and to leave it alone.  I don’t normally let spiders live in my house so that they’ll eat other bugs, but I thought it would get the kids to move on.

Jack did not get his clothes on but went to investigate the spider.  He came back and told me that it is having babies.  I didn’t believe this because I’ve watched Charlotte’s Web and I know that spiders put all their eggs in a sack until they’re ready to come out (hatch?).  I wondered what would make him say she was having babies…did he see a sack somewhere?

The adult conversation was going no where.  Casey was still only halfway into the bathtub.  Finally I decided to kill the spider.  I told the kids they were wimps and went off with some paper towels to get the big bad spider.  I believe Pat mocked my non-chalant attitude.

Oooh…yes, that is a very big spider in the bathroom.  Oh, and there are tiny little spiders all over the bathroom floor aka babies.  The kids informed me that mama spider was under Casey’s bath towel that didn’t quite get hung on the hook like it should.  I pick up the towel and shake several more babies out of the towel onto the floor and squish them.  Casey was very concerned that I might make her use that towel after her bath.  Not a chance…straight to the washing machine with it to drown any baby spiders that might have hung on.

That mama spider was so big I decided that Pat could take care of her.  As he squished her more baby spiders came out.  I really thought they were supposed to be in sacs!

I’m pretty sure we got them all but I’ll be checking a few more times before I go to sleep tonight.  Casey summed it up well, “So next time we tell you there’s a spider, you just kill it…PLEASE!”

Post Script – Casey came home from school with only one of her earrings.  She was very distraught.  Cried about it every time she thought of her earrings.  We went to put new ones in tonight and I tossed the single one that had lost its mate.  I was determined to not keep random earrings around for “some day when we might find the other earring.”  I tossed it right into the garbage can with the paper towels containing all sorts of squished spider parts.

As soon as Casey got into bed tonight, she found the lost earring.  It hadn’t been lost at school.  I got to dig through the garbage can of spider parts for its mate.  New policy – we’ll be keeping lost earrings for at least one move from after the time it is lost.