Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Really Long Post!

Well I have been absent for a little bit, but I have a good reason!  So this will probably be the longest post ever.
Okay, first Design Star Challenge 1 is in the voting stage.  If you haven't checked it out yet head on over, you can click on the link on the right or follow it here.
It was a lot of fun to make this quilt.  I started by designing different versions on EQ7, then for some reason it became really stressful.  I started to worry about what everyone else was making and if mine would even be comparable to the other finalists.
Anyway, I finally decided that the only person I needed to please was myself.  Once that was out of the way the rest was a blast.  It was so much fun when everything was coming together.  I would get a little rush of adrenaline when I added the next step.  Don't act like you don't know what I mean, I'm sure you get a little excited as well!!!  I am glad it is finished and I'm in love with it.  So please vote!!!

After all of that sewing we decided to get away.  Actually we were invited to go camping with my brother and his wife.  It was their one year anniversary and they wanted all of us to go with them.  How sweet! They are the best and it was really fun for our whole family to be together.
We went to Calf Creek in southern Utah.  It is amazing country if you have never been there.  The first day we hiked to some slot canyons while my mom watched all the little kids.  Thanks mom!!  We hiked in Peek a Boo and Spooky.  It was breathtaking.  I really can't remember which canyon each picture was taken in, I won't even try to label them correctly.  

My husband and I at the mouth of one canyon.  We had a few pictures taken and my eyes were closed in both of them, darn it!

My husband and father in one of the wider parts.  
The internet warned if you were more than 42 inches around you would not fit through the canyon.  They were right!!  Throughout most of the hike we had to walk sideways holding our backpacks so we would fit through.  At one point we had to slide down some slick rock to get to the canyon floor.  The only problem was it was a pretty big drop.  We slid down as far as we could go then my husband lowered us down by our arms as far as he could and then he dropped us, and my brother caught us.  It was great!

The rock formations were beautiful.  Everyone kept commenting on how much they loved being there and experiencing something so wonderful.

One more picture of the inside of a slot canyon.  
As we walked through Spooky Canyon we noticed these interesting clumps on the side of the canyon walls.  When we looked a little closer we discovered they were nests of Daddy Long Leg Spiders.  EEEWWW!  There were 50 - 100 in each nest and they were only a few inches away from our faces.  I hurried through that part quickly! 

Yucky spiders!

 The next day our whole family hiked to Lower Calf Creek Falls.  It is a three mile hike in and then the same 3 mile hike back out.  Our kids were so great, they didn't whine at all, even though it was really hot and sandy.  I think they kind of enjoyed it!
The water fall was amazing.  It is 120 feet and it has beautiful canyon walls that surround it.  However the water is freezing!!  It really is ice cold, I only went in far enough for our family picture to be taken and that was enough for me.  My husband swam underneath the falls and then back and that was enough for him.  He is such a show off!

I think we have had enough adventures for a while.  Check back to see what I am working on now that Challenge 1 is almost through.  

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Late Nights

Well the Challenge 1 deadline is coming up really soon and I have spent many late nights just staring at my quilt.  I hate it when I have so many things going on in my head and I can't decide on one.  When I do decide on something then more options pop into my mind.  ARRGH!  Deep breaths, deep breaths.
I'm sure I will figure something out that I like.  Isn't that what it is all about, just making something beautiful that I am happy with?  Good luck to all of the other finalists.  You can check out their wonderful stories at McCalls.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A Quilt!

Well I realized that I have a lot of info about me but not a lot of pictures of what I can do.  Here is a quilt I made a few years ago.  I have always loved apple core quilts but I didn't want to make one because of those horrible curved seams.  Curved seams and I have not had a good relationship!  I decided to tackle one with the help of a presser foot that allows you to sew curves without pinning.  Sorry, I don't remember the name or where I purchased the presser foot.
I started by cutting out fabric that I had bought on clearance (gotta love those fabric deals).  With the template I was able to cut out three layers at a time.

Westenskow & Sons template
Then I just laid the pieces out on the floor until I was happy with the design.  It is a great quilt to cuddle under, just right when I watch tv.  I did not pin one seam on this whole quilt!

It is one of my favorite lap quilts and I may make another!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Birthday Present

As I told you earlier it was my mom's birthday this week.  I wanted to get her something that different that she would actually use.  I found this really cute thread holder by Grey Luster Girl, you can find her great tutorial here.  Anyway, my husband made it for me because he is very handy and I am not!  Here is what it started out like.  

We painted it white and I added a few new spools of thread.  

One more great thing is that he made me one too!  I know, I am spoiled.  Hopefully now both of us can keep track of what colors of thread we have and even be able to find where they are.

Panguitch Quilt Walk

Yesterday our family went to the Panguitch Quilt Walk.  Usually my husband and I go as vendors but this year my parents wanted to run the booth.  It was my mom's birthday so we surprised her with a quick visit.  Westenskow and Sons has been at this show for the past 10 years.  We are always in the same spot, everyone knows where to find us!  
Here is our booth, if you ever see us around stop by and say hi!

Ray & Patty Westenskow, Little K, me & Little A
Panguitch is a little town that has a lot of history, if it wasn't for quilts the first settlement might have starved.  As the story goes the first winter of the settlement the pioneers were running out of food.  Seven men took on the task of going to Parowan, which was on the other side of the mountain.  If you haven't seen mountains in Utah they are big, rugged and difficult to cross even in the best conditions.  As they started up the mountain they couldn't travel very fast because they would sink into the soft snow.  As they knelt in prayer on a quilt the men realized they could walk on the quilts without sinking.  They lined the quilts up and across the mountain they went.  The retrieved supplies from the settlers in Parowan and they went back across the mountain the same way.  The Quilt Walk Festival celebrates their heroism every year.  You can find the official story here.

Statue by Stanley Q. Johnson in Quilt Walk Park
 These two quilts that depict the story are the first quilts you see as you walk into the show.

Quilt Walk by Sheree Walstad
The Quilt Walker by Claudia Crump
 It isn't just a few people in town that put this festival together.  It involves the whole town.  There are quilts like the one below that decorate the main street.

The store fronts have quilts incorporated into their windows.  The Social Hall, which even hosts a dinner theatre about the event, hang quilts for the whole week.  It gives the town a very cozy feel.

We have been there for so many years that if feels like a second home.  The people are friendly and as most of you know if you meet a quilter you have just met a new friend.  

Friday, June 10, 2011


Well I just checked the McCall's Quilt Design Star site and I feel incredibly fortunate to be included with all of these wonderful quilters.  I have already spent too much time reading through all of their information, and looking at their wonderful quilts.  I hope you will pop over there and see what everyone has been up to.
As a side note, I finished the center of my latest design star quilt.  I love it!!  To bad I can't show it to you for a few more weeks.  Until then I will just have to admire it all by myself.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

One More Project Finished

A few years ago my oldest daughter wanted to sew a quilt.  So we started, and like almost every other quilt project in our house it was put aside for awhile.  She really wanted to finish it at the beginning of the summer, and we finished it this week!!
This is my mom, "L", and I putting it on frames.  I am so lucky to live close to my mom because I am not confident enough to do this by myself.  My poor mother has to come to my rescue at least once a week!

"A" was close by to help throughout the process.  Her favorite part was pushing the thumb tacks down, and holding onto any piece of fabric.    

Of course "K" was our constant cheerleader, she even threw a few disco moves in her routine!

It was really great to spend some time with "L" while we were tying the quilt.  "L" is such a natural and she didn't want to go to bed because she was having such a good time.  We put minky fabric on the back and she can't wait to use it everyday.

The only hard part will be trying to get it away from the other two!

I feel so honored to be able to pass on my love of fabric and quilting to my children.  It keeps me connected to my past while looking forward to the future with my three little ones.  

Monday, June 6, 2011


Well, I have finalized my quilt design for the Design Star Challenge!  At least I think I have, it may change again.  I can't show you any pictures yet, just be patient.  But as I was sewing last night I was getting a little bit excited to see it coming together and I realized that I love kites.  Not the kites you fly in the sky, but the ones that appear at the back of your sewing machine as you chain piece. There is nothing more inspiring than to take a big jumble of chain sewn pieces cutting them apart, pressing them and getting a visual of what my design is going to look like!  I know, I'm kind of a nerd but I'm sure someone out there feels the same way!  Happy Sewing!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Snow in May?

Well my husband and I just got back from a wonderful three day trip with about 250 youth from our valley.  We went to Aspen Grove in Provo Canyon and had a fantastic time.  Here is what it looked like on the first day.

Yea! It snowed on the 30th of May.  The snow would pile up on our jackets almost as fast as we could brush it off.  Luckily it only lasted about an hour and the rest of the trip was delightful.

The canyon was quite beautiful after the clouds disappeared.
It is good to be home and now it is time to get to work.  I have a quilt to design and sew!!