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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Blog Hops
Hi Everyone!

I am participating in two blog hops coming up in November.  The first starts on November 8th through the 13 and it's for the Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks from today's top designers.  I have a block featured in the magazine and it goes on sale mid-November.  My blog date is November 12th.

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My block happens to be on the cover!  It's on the top right on top of the "c".  I was included in this magazine last year but did not participate in the blog hop.  This should be fun!  There will be prizes and giveaways so check it out!


The second blog hop that I'm participating in is the Mistletoe Make & Bake Blog Hop.  This one looks like it will be fun!  We are going to post a cookie recipe each day and then on my chosen day, I will have a down-loadable project for Christmas.  There are many different designers included in the hop.  Make sure that you come by and see.  My date is the Tuesday, November 16th.  Each day we will blog about who is participating and comments on the holidays. 

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Tillie...
She is fitting in quite well in the Dillard household!  Bill has also told me how much he loves her and can't imagine a time without her...we've only had her 4 days!  Talk about a big softie!!  Maple is slowly getting used to her but has given some warnings when Tillie has gotten rambunctious.  We are making sure that Maple doesn't harm her but want to make Tillie aware that she can't jump and bite Maple.  Don't worry, Maple is getting lots of attention!  Here is a new picture of Tillie.  Look at those little pink feet!

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This weekend is Halloween!  I love fall and Halloween is a great holiday.  As my brother says about Halloween, it's one of the favorite holidays for kids because they get to dress up and receive lots of candy.  In Canada, instead of ringing the doorbell when we go up to the doors, we yell "Trick or Treat!"  Fortunately, when I was young no one asked for a trick! 


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Image courtesy of VintageHolidayCrafts.com


Hope you all enjoy Halloween and the fall as much as I do!  Take care and talk to you next week...thanksgiving is coming!!

Monique
1:09 pm edt          Comments

Monday, October 25, 2010

Tillie is here!
We picked Tillie up yesterday in Indiana.  It was about a 3 1/2 hour drive one way.  When we got there the breeder had her waiting for us.  I picked her up and that was it...love at first sight!  She is the tiniest, cutest thing ever! 

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Sue came with me to help drive and hold her.  She is such a great friend!  The breeder had two males left out of a litter of 10.  I teased Sue that she may have to go home with one.  She said - not if I want to stay married!  She has 3 dogs right now.  Here Sue is holding one of the other females.  She is quite a bit bigger than Tillie.
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When we got home, Maple wasn't quite sure what to do about this little thing.  So, she gave the "ugly face" which is what we call it when she is not happy with something.  We haven't seen that face since Glory was here.  Do you think she wants to be an only dog?  Well, she will just have to get used to Tillie. 

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Took her to the vet this morning, she checked out great and is only 6.2 pounds!  Now, remember, Old English Sheepdogs can grow to be between 60-100 pounds.  She will probably be on the smaller size but as you can see Maple is on the larger size. 

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Comfortable on the couch!


As you can tell, I'm already in love with this little doggie and will keep you posted on her!

As I had mentioned, a couple of people had some questions on my blog.  I am new to this, so any suggestions or comments are greatly appreciated!

First, how does someone follow my blog?  I guess there are two ways that she can do this.  I can set up an email address and when I update my blog, send an email to those on my list.  If you are interested in this, please let me know and I will set it up where you can email me direct and I will have you on my "blog list".
The second way is to add me to your "favorites" or "Bookmarks".  The need for an "rss" feed is required and that leads me to the second question/comment.  One lady asked if I would add an "rss" feed to my blog.  I have one already and it is a button at the bottom of the page called "xml".  From my understanding, what it does is update your favorites or bookmarks when I update my blog so they are always current.

Also, thank you again for all your positive comments on both my fabric and rulers.  I am thrilled that so many of you took the time to comment!

In a few weeks I will be doing a Christmas Blog Hop.  Keep me in mind to check them out.  There will be a free downloadable pattern and a cookie recipe.  

I will also be participating in another Blog Hop with Quiltmaker 100 Blocks Blog Tour.  My blog date is Friday, November 12th.  Check it out!

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Thanks for tuning in!

Monique
4:22 pm edt          Comments

Giveaway Winner!

Thank you so much to everyone who made a comment on my blog for the giveaway!  I am honored and excited that so many of you are interested in my Mini Fit to be Geese ruler and kit! 

The winner is Sandy who said: 

Sandy said...

What a fabulous giveaway. Would love to make this quilt and give it a new home. One can never have too many quilting tools and the Mini Fit to be Geese ruler sounds like it would be worth its weight in gold.

4:45 pm (on Thursday)

Sandy, please email me at info@opengatequilts.com with your address and I will send you your prize.  Congratulations!

A big THANK YOU to Carrie, Nicole, Thelma and Lisa for announcing my giveaway on their blogs!  They are the best and couldn't have done this without them.  Don't forget to check their blogs out:

Carrie Nelson - Miss Rosie's Quilt Co.
Nicole - Sister's Choice
Thelma - Cupcakes 'n Daisies
Lisa - Stashmaster

I have more to talk about but right now I'm housebreaking Tillie and we are off to the vet.  Will tell you all about the trip to get her and answer some of your questions from the blog comments.

Monique

9:15 am edt          Comments

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Giveaway!

It's giveaway time!  I am giving away a Mini Fit to be Geese ruler, pattern and kit.  The kit includes fabric to make the top using Olde World Style fabric line.  I chose the creams and blacks to make this striking mini quilt.  Measuring 18" x 18", the Mini Fit to be Geese ruler makes the small flying geese accurate and easy.

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Here are the fabrics that I used in the kit.  They are available on www.bundlesandbolts.com


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To enter for the drawing for this adorable kit and ruler, post a comment on my blog telling us why you love or hate flying geese.  Enter until Sunday night and on Monday morning, I will announce a winner. 

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Also on my website is a video on the Fit to be Geese ruler.  (Using the Mini Fit to be Geese ruler is done the same way as the Fit to be Geese ruler.)  Check it out to learn how to make flying geese fast and accurate with very little waste. 

Hope to hear from you!

Monique
8:53 am edt          Comments

Monday, October 18, 2010

Iowa
I'm back from Iowa and had an awesome time!  Denise from Quilter's Window is a wonderful lady and I so enjoy her company! 

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Denise and I

 Her shop always looks awesome and when I walked in her shop, what did I see?  Olde World Style!  It was really exciting to see all my fabric in a shop right up front!  Here is a picture of it when you walk in:

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Olde World Style in Quilter's Window


I taught Across the Ocean on Sunday and lectured on Saturday night.  The weather was perfect for both driving and sewing.  It was warm and sunny - what more can you ask for?  Here are some students busy at work:

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After the lecture Saturday night, Denise displayed my quilts on the chairs in the room.  I thought it looked pretty cool. 

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She also has made up several of my patterns and displays them in her shop.  I feel honored!

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Victoria Rose and Hidden Glory Quilts

I get to stay with Denise and her family when I visit and her 8 year old Cairn Terrier, Rocky, is my greeter.  Denise was teasing me with the ladies in the class that Rocky prefers me to her.  I told her that Rocky was having trouble knowing which of us to go to.  As they say, dog's know who loves them!  Speaking of dogs, only 6 more days until mayhem and puppy arrive in our house.  We are all ready except for Maple!
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Denise's dog, Rocky


Make sure you check back on my blog on Thursday, I am having a special give-away!

Until then,
Monique

12:11 pm edt          Comments

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Tillie

The countdown is on.  Only 10 more days and we get Tillie!  Maple is wondering what I'm up to and knows that something is coming.  Will she be in for a big surprise when Tillie shows up!  The breeder sent us some new pictures of Tillie.  Here she is:

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Tillie must think that this is her best side because she seems to always show this side!  She is about 5 weeks old here.



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I love the way that she folds her paws on top of each other...so cute!

I'm off to Quilter's Window in New Hampton, IA this weekend for a lecture and class.  The shop is wonderful as is the owner, Denise.  Her shop was featured in the Quilt Sampler Featured Shop from American Patchwork & Quilting.  Definitely worth the visit! 

One of the comments that I had on my blog is from Nicole from Sister's Choice Quilts and she wrote that she thought I had the greatest job on the planet, traveling to all these great quilt shops.  Yes, Nicole, I do have the best job on the planet!  I get to see great quilt shops, meet wonderful people and share my passion of quilting.  I feel like I'm very lucky! 

Will tell you all about my trip when I return from my weekend in Iowa. 

Monique
2:30 pm edt          Comments

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Back from retreat

The weekend was a blast, the weather was perfect and I got a lot done! 

First, the fun...one of my friends, Katie has the best sense of humor.  She organizes our weekend retreat at a cottage in her town of Lake Mills, WI.  One of the things that I love most about our weekends is the laughter.  With Katie's sense of humor, there is much laughter.  We're not sure if other people think we are funny, but we sure do.  One of the other things that we do on our weekends is eat!  We had lasagna, chicken casserole, breakfast bakes, baked goods, cakes, cookies...the list goes on.  Sue, Joyce and I went for a few walks to try and burn off some of the goodies but we didn't want to be gone too long in case we missed some of the fun!  I actually took a nap on Friday afternoon!  We had the windows open and with the breeze coming off the water and the sun shining in, it was perfect!

Have you heard me talking about my friend, LeAnne?  She is an awesome machine quilter and we stopped to pick up my quilt, Fit to be Geese made out of Olde World Style.  She is with her Old English Sheepdog, Sadie. 

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On our way up to Lake Mills, Joyce and I stopped at one of our favorite quilt stores, Life's a Stitch.  It is such an inspiring place.  If you ask Pat, she will bring her two dogs out to see you.  She has a 9 month old Bernese Mountain Dog and a St. Bernard.  As you know, I love dogs, especially big ones so I spent quite a bit of time, petty the dogs and talking to Pat. 

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When we were there, we picked up a really neat kit for an organizer.  (pictured below)  We decided to work on those this weekend and they are so cute!  Anyway, back to Life's a Stitch.  If you ever get a chance to go there, do!  It is wonderful and the owner is super nice and friendly.  The setting is perfect and you will definitely be inspired!  I will be teaching at her shop on the 20th of November.  I'm teaching Wine & Cheese which is featured in Fons & Porter magazine, December, 2010 issue.  Check it out on page 3! 

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Next, the weather!  We had the most perfect weather this weekend.  As I explained, the cottage is in Lake Mills and is across the street from the lake.  Our views of the lake were fantastic but see for yourself!

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There were kids swimming, sail boats out on the lake and numerous people walking.  Who would believe that would be the case in mid-October in Wisconsin?  Not me!  Perfect weekend to be at the cottage.

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I finished the pin cushion that I was working on, made several small bags for gifts and made the note book cover from Life's a Stitch.  Here is the pin cushion...Carrie will be proud of me!

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I did do some piecing too but really enjoyed the time to work on other things.  At night, I bound my Fit to be Geesequilt that I made using Olde World Style.  Here it is:

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This weekend I will be teaching and lecturing at another one of my favorite shops, Quilter's Window, in New Hampton, IA.  The owner, Denise, is a good friend and I go up every year in the fall to teach and lecture.  If you are in the area, come by and say "Hi".  I am teaching Across the Ocean.  

Talk to you later this week and hope to have more pictures of Tillie!

Monique
1:35 pm edt          Comments

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Wonderful Fall!
I guess it's no secret that my favorite time of the year is fall.  The weather is beautiful here - 70 degrees and sunny.  The nights get cool and you can leave your windows open.  Remember, I told you that I would post some pictures of the tree in my front yard.  Well, here they are and the tree hasn't even totally turned yet.  Am I lucky to have such a great view out my front window?  I sure feel like I am!

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I met some friends for coffee this morning and one of them said to us:  "When was the last time that anyone sewed for themselves?"  The look on their faces was priceless!  They both looked at her like she was crazy!  Well, it's true that we don't have a lot of time with family, work, friends, commitments but it is important to take some time to sew.  I am so lucky to be able to plan "friend - retreat" weekends.  And, we are going this weekend!  We rent a cottage on a lake, set up our sewing machines, cutting mats and irons and spend the weekend together.  There is much laughter, sewing, eating, and talking (not in any particular order.)  Everyone should try and get away to rejuvenate and I can't wait to go!

When my friend, Jean asked if we had sewn anything for ourselves recently, I can honestly say that I did.  I had bought a pin cushion kit for Carrie's strawberry pin cushion pattern - Miss Rosie's Quilt Co - Fruit Salad Pincushion.  I thought, this won't take long, I am going to work on it.  So far, I have it quilted and cut out and this weekend that is part of my "to-do" list.
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Strawberry Pin Cushion - Quilted


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Cut out and ready for seeds. 


I hope to have it done to show you after this weekend.  Now, I have to get it done!!  Of course, I am bringing about 20 projects and hope to get them all done.  I always bring too much but what if we run out?  Maybe we will have to go to a quilt shop?!  Oh darn!

Everyone have a great weekend and talk to you next week!

Monique
7:49 pm edt          Comments

Sunday, October 3, 2010

So much to talk about...

Well, I made it back from Portland in one piece.  Had a great whirlwind time and I'm home with Bill and Maple enjoying the cool fall weather.  I am not much of a flier.  I get motion sickness and it's really hard to travel anywhere without Dramamine.  Although, it works great, I sleep most of the time and have you flown lately?!?  The seats are cramped, the plane is full and inevitably, there is a screaming baby close by.  Luckily, there was only one on the way home and he only screamed 1/2 the time.  There was the cutest little girl close by and she was as quiet as a mouse and was perfect.  I complimented her mom on how good she was. 

Oh right...Portland!  It was a lot of fun and my class was super.  I taught the free pattern that comes with the Fit to be Square ruler.  The class really seemed to enjoy themselves.  As you can see by the pictures, they are working hard.  I had one wonderful lady, Beth from Elizabeth's Originals Quilting make sure that I (and she) took lots of pictures for my blog.  She is a long-arm quilter and her website is:  www.eocquilitng.com.  Check it out. 

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On Saturday, I demoed my Fit to be Geese ruler and I had redone the quilt using Olde World Style.  Here is a picture of me holding the quilt. 


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Remember how excited I was to meet Penny Sturges?  Well, I wasn't disappointed.  She is wonderful and so talented!  She was teaching her newest pattern, the Veranda bag and she used the blacks and creams from Olde World Style.  She was gracious enough to give me a pattern and one for my mom too!  Mom is going to be thrilled.  (Except, now she has to make 2, one for her and one for me!!)  I didn't get a picture of Penny but I did get a picture of the bag, where was Beth when I needed her?  Here is the Veranda bag with Penny holding it:

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I was very impressed with the E. E. Schenck warehouse.  It was super clean and organized.  I have been at other warehouses where it is super dirty.  So, I was very pleased to know that it was so clean.  It was also exciting to see bolts of my fabric on the shelves!  Sue had given me a shopping list of fabric that I needed for kits so I had a cart full.  People were teasing me about buying my own fabric and I said, who's else's should I buy!?  Shopping was so much fun!

Meanwhile, I received a new picture of Tillie.  She is now just over 2 lbs!  She is so tiny!  The breeder mentioned that she will be around 55 lbs when she is full grown.  Hard to believe that little thing will be that big!  Will post more pictures as she gets bigger. 
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Talk to you soon!
Monique
6:58 pm edt          Comments


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