Monday, July 23, 2012

Stopping in

for a quick minute before we head out on another family vaycay.
We just got back from Montana.  And it was awesome.  Five days on the most gorgeous lake ever with my parents, siblings, nieces and nephews.

Some of the highlights included seeing the huge smiles on these kiddos' faces as my brother-in-law drug them around the lake on the tube:


Watching my babies get up on the knee board for their first time.  They loved it and I was a proud mama.


Soaking up the rays and enjoying a little R & R.


And last, but certainly not least, enjoying some good old fashioned bonding time with my family.  It was such a nice week.  We're off again this afternoon to hang out with my husbands family at a nearby cabin.  Things are busy, busy, busy around here but I'm trying to squeeze in some "work" (que the air quotes) around all the fun we're having!

On a quilty note, check out these Scrap Jar Star quilts that people have been emailing me about:










And of course, Leanne's.  When I was debating about whether to make mine a table topper or a big quilt, she inspired me to "go big or go home"!

I love seeing all your projects using my patterns and tutorials so keep 'em coming!

Happy Quilting!
~ Amber

Thursday, July 12, 2012

FWQ

Well, first I want to thank you for all of the well wishes you guys left me with regards to the fire that was so close to our home last week.  The fire definitely added a little excitement to our summer but luckily we were not in any immediate danger.  As I wrote my last post (on the third day of the fire) we were blessed with hours and hours of rain that our state so desperately needed.  I think the fire is finally out now but firefighters are still keeping a close eye on things.  We had another flare up two nights ago but I couldn't see anything yesterday so I am crossing my fingers that they got the last of it put out.  I know there have been many others that have experienced similar things (or worse) so we are counting our blessings at this time.

In the craziness of the fire and getting ready for a family vacation to Montana I have managed to get three more blocks done on my Farmer's Wife Quilt.

The first is #29 (Economy)

I was excited to use some of this new red and white chevron fabric I bought recently but now I'm not sure if I like it here in the middle of this economy block.  I know it's just plain lazy of me (I am not really one for re-doing things unless they just completely won't work) so I will probably end up leaving this block "as is".  The chevron and the dots are just a little too busy for me though.

The next block I made was #6 (Big Dipper)

And the last block I made was #69 (Practical Orchard)

These all were relatively easy but I should be moving on to some harder ones in the next month or so (eek!)


So now that you can see #29 in perspective to the others do you say yay or nay on the chevron?  I think that makes 23 finished now so I only have 5400 more to go!  Oh - I mean 88.  That's soooo many though... hellllp meeee!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

"Our Mountain is on Fire."

That is what the text said
on Tuesday afternoon.


As I was enjoying the final few moments of a tanning session at 7-Peaks Water Park Tuesday afternoon, I heard a woman next to me tell her daughter, "Look at that big fire.  It's up by our house."  I looked over and tried to navigate where that fire must have been.  I told myself it was probably in the neighboring city on the other side of our mountain cove.

I was wrong.

As I got in my car to drive home from 7-Peaks I reached into my glove box to grab my phone.  It was vibrating.  It was my mom.  The first thing she said was, "Have you talked to Ryan? To which my answer was, "No."  To which she said, "You need to call home right now!"  So I hung up and noticed that I had received a text from my husband with those words, ""Our mountain is on fire" with the above picture attached.  I called my husband and got the voicemail.  Desperate for information I then called a few neighbors, friends, my husband (again) and finally got ahold of a neighbor who lives a few houses away.  She filled me in on the details and set my mind at ease (a little bit).  But when you are 30 minutes away and have no idea how bad it is and how close it is to your house, you have to try not to panic.  The drive home was chaos with several back-to-back phone calls and texts from friends and family who had heard about the fire.  I had three little kids in my backseat while all this was going on so mama was trying to get information while trying to stay calm :)
 

We got home and saw this view from the end of our cul-de-sac.  We weren't in immediate danger but it was still kind of crazy around my neck of the woods.  Neighbors were packing up their trucks and motor homes.  Planes and
choppers were flying overhead.  I figured, while we were waiting around to see what would happen, that it was as good a time as any to make sure our 72-hour kits were ready for a summer evacuation.  As I was going about my business my hubby came in and nonchalantly told me that there had been a message that we were suppose to evacuate.  I was like, "What?!?  Are you serious?"  He kind of acted like we may or may not follow orders.  Then, 10 minutes later we got a knock on the door.  It was an officer informing us of a mandatory 10 minute evacuation.  We gathered up our bags, a few important documents, started taking pictures of all our possessions (for insurance purposes), packed 3 quilts in the car (two from two different grandmothers and my scrap jar star quilt) and grabbed our dog, Molly. 



This is a mild view from our way out of town.
Luckily, we were only evacuated till about noon the next day (July 4th).
The fire has moved quite a bit south since then - closer to our house.  But it's about half to two-thirds of the way up the mountain so we feel relatively safe.


Here is a picture from our master bedroom.  You can really see what's going on when it's dark.  This was from night one (we may have stopped home to get a few more things and take this picture.)  It was about 10 hours after the fire began. 


This last photo was one we took when we got home from the fireworks last night (night 2).  I could see this from my baby's window last night (well, he's not a baby - he's 10 - but he's still my baby, you know?)  That made me kind of sad but I tried not to draw any attention to the view out his window as I tucked him into bed last night.

This morning I woke up to the sound of helicopters at 7:30 a.m.
Things are really bustling around here.  My husband just came in and opened the blinds as I'm writing this.  It's raining.  Prayers are being answered.  We really need the moisture.  Hopefully thunder and wind will not accompany this down pour.  Keep praying for us, o.k.?

I am so thankful to the firefighters who help to fight these fires.  They put their lives in danger to help protect the homes and families here.  And those, pilots who are flying through the rough terrain of our mountains dropping water and fire retardant.  They are amazing.  I know there are many others out there helping and serving in countless other ways too.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!  Also, I have to give a quick thank you to those of you who have sent concerned emails, texts and phone calls to make sure we're o.k.  I haven't heard from some of you in a LONG time and the fact that you would call/write means the world to me.   I know many other families are dealing with similar trials right now and I wish you all the best too!

Talk to you soon.
~Amber

P.S.  If you are interested in hearing more information about the Quail Fire in Alpine, Utah click HERE.

Monday, July 2, 2012

New Project - Spools

These spools are fun.
And fun is good.


Pattern = Spools by Camille Roskelley.  Fell in love with it HERE.

You may be wondering why these colors are kinda random.  Well, I made these spools for some members of my Sassy Stitchers Quilt Guild.  Each person provided their background fabric, their spool fabric and then specified what the color scheme for the "thread" is.  I hope they like them.  I have four more to make, including mine, which will be in aquas, pinks and reds to match my sewing room.