22 January 2013


**Warning!!** This post is absolutely random and covers so much random stuff including: quilting, gardening, homebrewing, teaching, mail, etc.

Lately, most of my time has been spent preparing for the upcoming semester that begins tomorrow. I am teaching five classes this semester: four astronomy labs, and one lecture/lab combo science teacher prep class. I have taught the astronomy labs for 3 years now (since I was in grad school teaching as a TA) so those are fairly easy for me to prepare for. The science education class is more difficult. I taught it last semester, but only knew I was teaching it 3 days before the semester started. Yuck. This time, I have much more time to prepare. I give you my completed syllabi (with contact info leaf-ed out)! Woohoo! 

I have also been able to fit in time to work on other things! Things like the amazing and hilarious hamburger potholder pattern. Cheese and patty are done. One bun just needs binding. One bun needs quilting and binding. Tomato, onion, lettuce, and pickles still need to be assembled. Clearly though, progress is being made! Woohoo!

I also had time to whip up a few wonky stars for a bee I'm in. One of our member is sick, so we are putting together a get well soon quilt for her.

Speaking of things that need to get well soon, my Brussels sprouts and broccoli have been infested with cabbage worms. I bought the stuff to treat it, then it started raining (which it NEVER does in South Texas) and I felt that it would be wasted effort to spray treatment in the rain. So when it finally stopped raining, this is what was left. So sad. All 6 plants look the same.
I sprayed the living daylights out of them all, and am hoping for the best. Worst case scenario, I rip them out and re-plant in the spring. No biggie. I also purchased some super fun heirloom seeds for the spring which I am very excited about.

I guess that is the therapeutic thing about gardening is that stuff dies. Sometimes it comes back (though usually not). Either way, you go on and try again or try something else. Eventually, it works out. Or doesn't, and that is okay.

I also finally finished potting everything on my front porch! So pretty!

Oh, yeah, back to crafting! February will be my month in Color Bee Shocked, and I have all of the fabric packing in envelopes and ready to mail. This photo shows the fabric selection.

I also finished up a mini quilt kit and dcided to turn it into a pillow cover to sell on etsy. Available here, if you are interested. This is my first item on etsy, so I am pretty excited about it!! I really am not too fond of the fabric the kit came with (Moda Double Chocolate), but the pattern could easily translate into brighter, more modern fabric.

Ages and ages ago, I started working on a Twister quilt. If you remember from this post, I have a really hard time actually keeping quilts for myself, so it sat. As luck would have it, I believe I have found the perfect home for it! Bam! Incentive to start working on it again.

In case you have never made a twister quilt, you start by making a square patchwork quilt top like this:

Then you cut it up with a magic twister block template, and sew it back together. Once it is sewn back together, you get this incredible thing! Drastic improvement. Now that it has a purpose, I just need to baste, quilt and bind it. But I am going to hold off until they are closer to actually buying a house.

In news unrelated to quilting, I also packed up all of the leftover grain from brewing beer this past weekend. Yum! Well, yum to the beer. The grain is now for chickens. It came to about 12 quart sized bags. Chickens think this stuff is the most incredible thing on the planet. I am taking a bunch of it to my cousin, who will soon have 15 hens, and already has one rooster and a peacock. Luckily, every time beer is brewed, this magically appears in my freezer!

Finally, I am going to leave you with something super awesome! As you may or may not know, I collect postcards. [I also highly recommend Postcrossing if you, your child, your grandchild, or anyone you know would like to collect postcards.]

Anyways, a friend of mine recently went to South Africa for vacation, and I asked her to send me a postcard. Usually when I ask people to send one, they forget, so my expectations are not too high. Then today, the most INCREDIBLE postcard I have ever seen showed up in my mailbox! Ahhh!!! So exciting!!! She even went on a shark dive, which has always been my dream.

So, that is all of the random stuff I have been up to. How about you?


  1. You've managed quite a lot - impressive!

    Love the Twister quilt - that is so cool seeing the before and after pics!

  2. wow, i didnt' realize there was a magic twister pattern-- so neat! it look great!

  3. Your twister quilt looks great - you have been busy!

  4. Ohh, that twister quilt is beautiful!

  5. I am feeling your pain. Our semester started yesterday :( I love the heart pillow. The twister quilt is great. I have a top done in 30s prints and hope to quilt it sometime before finals :)

  6. What a wonderful group of random stuff!

  7. I just love what you've done with the twister quilt, it is an amazing top! An that hamburger potholder(s)...is lovely...can't wait to see it finished!

  8. Popping over from Lee's WIP Wed... You are one busy lady! Thanks for showing how the Twister quilt works. I thought you made the blocks and then cut them up, I didn't realize you make a whole quilt top and then cut it up. Don't know if I could do that once it was all together :) Good luck with the garden!

  9. I love the twister quilt, especially the difference between before and after.

  10. Hi, I myself live in South Africa, and shark diving is not on my 'to do list', I do however would love to swim with dolphins.. I love your twister quilt, still on my 'want to make one of these' lists..

  11. I love your twister and the burger theme pot holders are fab. I hope your veggies recover and you enjoy the homebrew :)

  12. I love your pillow and your twister quilt!!!! Do you mind me asking how you did the stitching on the first hamburger? I really like it.

    1. I bought the pattern here, but haven't exactly followed it yet. http://www.etsy.com/listing/77686252/build-a-burger-quilted-potholder-hot-pad

      The cheese I did just by starting in the middle (well, it turned out to not actually be the middle, but I like it) and did turns until I was to the edge.

      The patty was done with this stitch on my machine that looks like x's. I never had a use for it until now.

      The sesame seed quilting on the bun was done by hand. I used all 6 strings of embroidery floss so the seeds would look thick. I hope this helps! :)

  13. My semester started two weeks ago, so things are thick right now with getting first assignments in, etc. etc. you know boring teacher stuff. Am also an adjunct professor, but they must do it differently there because here in California we are allowed to teach only two classes. That's it.

    I loved your post--fun to read, and congrats on the Twister finish!


    1. Sometimes I wish I was only allowed to teach 2 classes. Last semester I had 3 education classes and 4 astronomy labs and I wanted to rip my hair out by December!

  14. your twister quilt is so pretty... love all those colors :)


  15. I love that twister - I have that tool, but have been afraid to use it - this looks fantastic!

  16. Oh my, so much going on! Awesome! I love that hamburger pot holders, so cool!