Monday, August 25, 2014

Our Vacation

And Re-Writing History! Okay our Vacation wasn't history changing, but what we saw will change the way history books are written. I can't believe it has been 3 weeks since we went on our very small trip of 2 nights away to the northern part of Greece.
The Heart is our Home and the Box is where we went.
  What I love about traveling is:
  • Seeing Historical Sights
  • Seeing Natural Sights
  • And Eating!
We had plenty of food to eat, first stopping for lunch at the mall in Thessaloniki for our bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken (we eat this any time we are there).  Then we ate dinner in Asprovalta, calamari and tzatiziki (if you need a tzatziki recipe you can get it here).
 Enjoying Calamari
Yes, I get 2 Ice-Creams!
The shop owners offered the kids ice-cream and they of course said Yes, but it was a Mastika ( μαστίχα) flavored, which is pretty good in ice-cream form, not sure how to describe the taste, but this is something they only make in Greece, specifically Chios Island. The next night we enjoyed Gyros in Nea Peramos
I don't have many pictures of the beaches, since I am always in the water.
This is near Nea Peramos, the beach is called Sand Dunes (but in Greek)
The 2 places we stayed at are starred and the little teardrop is where the find of the century has been discovered.
The signage at Amfipoli
The top sign says Macedonian Tomb, we wanted to see it, but when we crossed the road, there was nothing there, the nicely paved road turned into a dirt road.  We thought the Greeks must have gotten the signage wrong, but what it is is something that they didn't announce till this week.  They have discovered a new tomb to rival that of Vergina.  Here is an article in Greek(pictures are nice) and here is a smaller article in English(my husband and I have been arguing all week about who is buried there). Amfipoli (amphipolis-Αμφίπολη)  is an Ancient City, if you have watched the Movie 300 with the Persian King Xerxes, this is where he was defeated.  And where Alexander the Great's wife and son were executed. (I believe they are the ones in the tomb)  My husband thinks that Alexander the Great is in it.  We can't wait to find out WHO is inside, I also believe that Alexander the Great's mother could possibly be inside.
Ancient Aqueduct.
Rolling Hills and the river meeting the Sea.
The most popular sight of Amfipoli right now is the Lion, it is right off of the old road from Asprovalta to Kavala.
The Lion Monument, was found in 1912 and rebuilt in the 30's.  I am using this as my color palette and the story behind it and the region Amfipoli to Design my Surface Pattern for my class that I took with Bonnie Christine at Creativelive.
I made this on Adobe Illustrator, aren't you proud.
It only took me an hour to figure out how to do the color swatch, lol, not very computer literate!

The class was great, you can take it too, I watched it live, from 7pm to 2am for 3 days to see it for free.  But you can pay just $79 to watch it anytime.  I was a little scared when on Friday we didn't have any electricity all afternoon and then boom at exactly 7:05 the electricity was back on, phew. Now I didn't know anything about Adobe Illustrator and it is a definite learning curve, but the I would have been really lost with out Bonnie's lessons.  The other cool thing is that you can use the Illustrator for FREE for 30 days.  Sign me up right, I have always wanted to make my own fabric line. (you will need to sign up for Adobe first and then the Creative Cloud and then you can download Illustrator for free) You can find more info on the Design Surface Challenge from Bonnie's web site, Going Home to Roost. Of course no trip is complete with out some fun!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

1 Thing I like about Greece


Halva is yummy buttery caramelized gooeyness that taste a little like a marshmallow after it has been toasted by an campfire.  How it is made or where it comes from I can not tell you, but I can tell you to buy it if you see it.
they generally offer you a taste of Halva as you walk by.
  I like the kind with Almonds and it definitely has to be made with REAL butter, of course you can find it with out Almonds and I think a few places use non butter, but trust me the real butter is much, much better.  A kilo cost a little less than 10 euros we normally go for 1/2 a kilo for 5, it's really not enough and is eaten very fast, my children just gobble it up, we even had to go to the fair a second time around because they wanted more and my daughter wanted her "own" wheelie thingie.

Kai Kati, is by far the best brand of Halva, but you won't be able to find this everywhere in Greece.  Look for it in the sweet shops, they keep it under heat lamps because this is the wet/warm halva, not the dry cold kind, it has a mealy texture like ground up sesame seeds ( I don't like that kind, but definitely give it a try to).
I was so busy taking pictures and excited to take a piece home that I almost forgot to pay the lady, ooopps, have you ever done that?

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Thank you, I am blessed!

Happy 4th of July Everyone!  Warning this post is loaded with photos :)

I want to say a special Thank you to Dad and Rhonda for their support of my fabric addiction, and Mom for all of the lovely boxes filled with fabric.
Mrs. Bobbins
For my birthday Mom sent this little box of joy filled with fabric and a few birthday gifts for Katerina, Love you Mom.
How did you know that the kids have been begging for one of those worm things?
Dad and Rhonda gave me $40 for my birthday and I immediately bought some fabric, thread and stabilizer, all from one shop to save on the postage (crazy postage prices)
I got the little buttons on the bottom right of this photo from my favorite button company Button Mad, they are handmade buttons made by women in South Africa, and they are always beautiful.
And I made this...
It is a crib organizer that I have made for a friend of mine that is expecting a baby in September in Portland Oregon.  I asked people who have Pinterest to pin it for a Challenge and although I did not win a popular vote, at current I have 32 repins and 53 Likes, but I think it was less at the time of judging.  So I did not win the most pins, that belongs to this wonderful quilt.
Kelli Fannin of Seriously... .I think it needs stitches made it and not only is she a great quilter but she is also a great person, we had chatted before the challenge was due and I can see how she got almost 200 repins and 200 Likes, not only is it a fantastic quilt but she is a fantastic person.
Then there was the second and third most pinned and liked Pinterest projects, you can see them here.

And then there was the winners in the superlative categories:
2.  Best use of color -  Tumbling Hexies by Ramona Putnam
3.  Best technique - Pillow by Jana O'Brien
4.  Most creative use of thread - Quilted Table Runner by Susan Slusser

That's me #5, - JUDGES, JUDGES, thought my project deserved the prize for most functional, wow, really?  I love it don't get me wrong, it is what I wanted to make for my friend and is pretty cute.
See these baskets (the tutorial can be found here.)
Not only do they hang on the organizer from the buttonholes in the middle.
But they can also hang on your door knob, so you can have one in another room if you want.
And then the clutch I used the selvedge (the end piece of fabric that some people throw away) to create a strap.
It can hold a few diapers and the diaper wipes.
The panel I used my machine to quilt a vase filled with Cosmos, they mean Peaceful, because I hope the baby brings them peace and is peaceful!

So that is what I made, Katerina had great fun helping me photograph it.
The last 3 was another day and I told her stay right there (pic on left) but she couldn't resist coming in and checking it out again.

I wanted to give a special Thank you to friends and family who have supported me, THANK YOU!
A special Thank You to Lisa, Marjorie, Stacey and Fenna, I have little surprises coming in the mail for you.
And Thank you to AGF (Art Gallery Fabrics, love the texture and feel of their fabric) Angela Walters the designer of the panel and all of the sponsors of the Challenge and especially the Judges, hehe.


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

If you have Pinterest

Could you "Like" or "Re-Pin" a project of mine, it would be greatly appreciated.

I made a crib organizer with removable fabric baskets and a diaper clutch out of 1 Panel of Fabric and some solids.

There are some great prizes for the winners, okay I won't win, in fact my blogging buddy is doing that with her bike quilt.

Pretty Please Pin, if you have Pinterest and maybe tell you friends about it too :)

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Sea Horse mini Quilt and a Giveaway!

I made something for the Modern Mini Quilt Challenge over at Ellison Lane!

My very own Sea Horse Wall Hanging!  The Challenge...First Wall Hanging and first 3D project, so cool!
Using the Selvages and scraps leftover from making my Anchors Aweigh Quilt and my Honeycomb Pillow.
I did some organic wavy lines and other stitching to hold down the selvages on both sides, sandwiching it between a piece of batting.  Then I used up my leftover binding from making the pillow and bound the wall hanging by sewing machine.
Front and Back, closeup of stitching
For the seahorse I stitched up a whole bunch of little squares trying to match them up to look like this picture.
I traced this to bondaweb and then ironed it onto my fabric and cut away the extra fabrics, then I ironed the seahorse to a piece of leftover blue fabric from my quilt and did some embroidery to empasize the spines on the Seahorse.
I ironed on a piece of iron of batting and tucked the blue fabric behind it and then blanket stitched the Seahorse to the quilted selvages.
Mostly Coral color way of Salt Water with a strip of Aqua Octopus selvage
Back of Pillow with Front of Wall Hanging.
Front of Pillow with Back of Wall Hanging.
Size 12 1/2 Square and the Seahorse 2 1/2 x 6 1/2, Love the Selvages.
Now I need your help, the tail is moveable as is my "seaweed" should I have the Seahorse tail in front of behind the seaweed.
In front of behind
Did you read through all of that and want to see the giveaway?
I love June, it's the Birthday month in my family, mine, my daughter's, my brothers and my mom's are all in June and I have a dozen of friends that also celebrate a June birthday, gotta love those Gemini's.  So to celebrate my daughter and I are giving away a fat quarter of fabric from each one of the dresses I have made for her.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
I wish we could be here, but it has been very rainy the past weeks.
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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival- Anchors Aweigh Baby Quilt

Okay, I am ready to show it, I have been procrastinating about showing it, because there are so many awesome quilts out there, but I really am very proud of it.
lots of fussy cutting the right pieces of fabric.

So here goes, I am going to enter it in the Blogger's Quilt Festival, just for fun.

The Prerequisite photo shot of it hanging outside and getting the rocks behind it (if you are new and visiting from the Blogger's Quilt Festival, thank you for stopping by my blog, I live in Beautiful Kalampaka Greece, with large rocks behind my house and many of them have monasteries built on them).
Very windy the last couple of days,with lots of dust from Africa.

 I quilted it on my home machine with a normal foot,
and did a cheater method or don't have the money method and quilted it to a blanket that I bought at IKEA for 3 Euros ($4 in the States), it is polyester and I also just folded it over to the front and used it as the binding too.  This did 3 things, saved me from having to buy batting, and from buying fabric for the back and fabric for binding, plus it is super soft and cozy.  Here is where I show you a picture of a kid snuggling under it, she really is sleeping here.
A few days ago I was freaking out, you see I had put in some hand embroidery and used a washable fabric pin to mark the half inch area and it left brown spots when I washed it out.
I decided I didn't like the look of the hand quilting and took all of the stitches out, my husband and kids agreed with me, it didn't do anything for the quilt.
See, nothing.

At the bottom of the quilt is the submarine fabric and I just did an embroidered back stitch around it, and you can see a few of the fussy cut anchors.  I added this photo because I forgot to take a picture of it so the quilt is slightly wrinkly from the kids laying under it.
Blogger’s Quilt Festival Stats
Quilt Name: Anchors Aweigh Baby Size
Finished quilt measures: 46.5” x 54.5”
Special techniques used: non-traditional backing and binding Polarvide by IKEA
Quilted by: Me on my Little Machine
Blogger's Quilt Festival Category: Baby Quilt #96

This is my first quilt!
If you want to read more about it you can go here.
I finished sewing up this bad boy this month, I am so glad to have it done and now I need to work on my Coral one.
Linking up to Such a Sew and Sew May Finish Linky Party.

May Finishes
Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, May 20, 2013


Just in case you have wondered where I have been.  Depressed, depressed about the situation of Greece and the Greek people.
The country is beautiful, the people are corrupt, the government does not help matters and just makes things worse.  Instead of finding a way to make the 70,000 illegal rooms and villas pay taxes they are charging us more for our electricity.  We already pay $250 a month and this is just for lights, refrigerator, TV and computer, not for any cooling or heating of the home.
I will try to get my mojo for Greece back, but as of now, I am done.