May 5, 2013

Spring Sew-In---my 1111th post!

The Friendship Quilters Guild in St. Clair County (AL) had the three day spring sew-in at the Camp Chula Vista Christian Conference and Retreat Center.  We have used this venue before---back in the woods but off I-20 a mile or two,  about 4 miles north of Pell City.

Aline and I were the only ones from the north end of Calhoun County who had signed up to go.  Aline watches her great granddaughter a good bit of the time depending on the child's grandmother's work schedule. Her schedule to have the baby is not often known till a few days in advance.  She offered to drive on Friday since it was entirely possible I would be going by myself on Saturday.  This is also the Talladega NASCAR race weekend which effects a multi-county area but we were trying to avoid any extra time on I-20 and the Lincoln (AL) exits.  You can see the race track from the interstate and that weekend, spring and fall, the track becomes a metropolitan area.

We took a minor cut off road that she knew of and when we hit the other end I knew we only had about 2 or 3 miles to go on 1-20 if we just got on the ramp going west.  Aline thought she know of another possible cut off ---did we want to go for it?  You know where this heading, don't you?  It might have helped if we had one of two things---an Alabama road map or GPS but that unit was at home.  We both kept thinking we would see a road to the right that would cut back to I-20 or US 78.  It didn't happen.  When we were up on a high ridge doing hair pin curves and "Sammy Snake" curves climbing first up and then down, we should have known something was not quite right.  The other clue was we had crossed into first Shelby County and then Jefferson County.  The map below will show you how the three counties come together in that one little area.  (Had we taken the alternate route to Pell City would would have hit a small area of Talladega County on the way over, LOL). 

So what if we were in both Vandiver, AL which I had never heard of and then Leeds which we had---lovely old downtown area, actually that you would never see from the interstate.  At least we knew which direction to turn or head back a bit east.  Of course we were late getting to the hop and said we would have to sit down and get some production done!   "How did you manage to get that turned around?" the girls asked and my pronunciation of "Vandiver" was corrected as we related just where we had been.  Of course when we left they asked us if we planned to go straight home. Okay, we deserved that!

Mostly my project Friday and Saturday both was prepping applique for the flower hop in late May.  I am trying to avoid fusing anything unless I absolutely have to----needle turning is never an option in case you are wondering.    Shelia had led the girls with a green bag for holding used grocery bag on Thursday----she showed Aline and I how to make them and sent kits home with us.  She also did ORT jars---I have two of them so kept working on my prep work.  I missed the pillow case demo that Jackie did so I'll have a couple of the Belles show my how to do this, down the line.  They had some pretty ones made up though.  One other project was making a fat quarter or fat eighth lollipop.  Peggy showed us how to make one after she had gotten one at a quilt shop or quilt show.  I've got the stick and the cellophane wrapper so maybe one of these days, LOL.   I decided Friday evening that the machine was not needed but a light source was so I swapped out a few items for Saturday's return.

Dixye and I both made these Heirloom tomato pincushions with wool kits that Shelia had done up.  I had done one of these before along with a Victorian thumb cushion, 8 of them of both types, but had kind of forgotten just how.     

You should have seen us trying to free form cut those felt deals on the top.  I tend to freeze with the scissors when given THAT type of instruction.  Shelia said  "just cut out triangles"  from the square of felt.  Well, that led to a 2nd attempt mess that looked a little bit like a swastika.  Finally I cut another free form piece like the first ridiculous attempt at free form and we glued them both down.  The polka dot was from a little swap game we did.  I love it though not sure what I will do with it but it goes with some of my existing stash.

It rained a good bit of the day yesterday so I don't know if they got the race in or not.  There were some guests staying in the hotel area so they stopped up to see what we were doing as well as get some coffee and juice.  Two of the woman said they were working one of the souvenir booths.  They had been gone from their Florida homes since Tuesday and they work the Daytona, Talladega races and used to do Martinsville.  I believe that there was a third race as well.  Another guy came in for ice and said they had been coming in for the race for the last nine years.   Two young boys possibly his kids, came in before that and talked the hospitality gals out of some donuts on Friday too.   I am sure that Antoinette told them that it did not come with the hotel but she would let them, this time. The rooms are basic---no TV or phone, really a bed to rest on mainly unless they dramatically changed things when they remodeled them recently.  There is no continental breakfast offered as it is not that kind of facility. 

Sew-ins are good times with good people though a few of the gals that normally would have attended were not able to come.  Good eats too. The hospitality gals take good care of us and lunch is provided.  there is no restaurant right there at that exit so it is good thing.   I had made 6 1/2 dozen cookies and left DJ some but only came home with 1 1/2 cookies on the first day.  I know one girl was taking a couple home for her husband as she said he asks "did that girl that makes the cookies bring some today?"  She told me about Foster's sweet tooth, LOL. 

My sewing room looks like a cyclone blew through as it often does when something creative is going on.  I did attempt to put my things away from the sew-in but some of needs to stay out.  I am to the point of having about a 2 foot section of the desk available and every flat surface has something piled up on it.  I've been doing a bit of re-design on the flower project so I have been playing with graph paper and a compass drawing any number of circles to get the size I want.   I am making some progress but also having to stop and do some "research" too.

Tomorrow I have to go for fasting lab ahead of my 6 month check up and then mid morning I have a followup appointment with the eye doctor.  I'll go get breakfast between the two events, go to the library if I have to kill some time or just drag some knitting and wait at the office.  There goes the morning though!  I did the laundry this afternoon and the marketing is done as well.  I think I will go translate my flower idea to cloth.

I will probably not post again till I put my "It's For the Birds" blog hop post up.  We are required to have it up at 1201 a.m. Eastern the night before our scheduled day meaning a scheduled post will be written up.  I am due up on Tuesday the 7th.  I hope you will stop by so I can share what I made with you!   THX for stopping by----------


  1. So I am curious- How DO you pronounce "Vandiver" ?

  2. Those blog hops have sure got you hopping - pun intended - haha. Can't wait to see what you made for the "Birds" one. And I'm with Gene - is it - VAN - di - ver? - ;))

  3. that is a lot of posts! glad to catch up and will be back tomorrow...


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