Thursday, December 12, 2013

Busy Blocks: The quilt top is DONE!

Aside from lots (and lots and lots) of ironing, the quilt top for Busy Blocks is done!

E kept walking in front of the camera so I readjusted it to include him in the photograph. This won't be the last photo of E and his quilts! Perhaps I should start taking suggestions for my next pattern/project?

You didn't think I was going to leave you with a just one little blurry photo of E, did you? He's been nonstop ever since he took his first steps on Halloween at about ten months old.

No, your eyes aren't playing tricks on you—E is wearing a different outfit.
I didn't get around to taking a full shot of the quilt top until this morning.
I finished the quilt top yesterday afternoon and after a close inspection by E, we drove straight to The Quilt Patch to choose backing fabric.

Since I came it right at closing and didn't want to occupy a creepily-silent fabric shop in the dark all by me onesies, I went straight to the flannels, in search of a bright bolt that match the colors and "personality" of my quilt.

After little to no internal debate—which is weird for me—I cut off three yards of the cherry-red flannel chevrons from Ann Kelle's Remix Flannel fabric collection by Robert Kaufman. (If you love this fabric as much as I do, there's still ten yards or more left in-shop and online.)
Robert Kaufman Remix Flannel: Cherry Chevrons (AAKF-10394-99)
It's very youthful and matches the red and white Dear Stella confetti dot on the quilt top like a dream. (It doesn't really look like it two photos ago, but the reds are nearly the exact same shade.)

All that's left to do is decide whether to quilt it myself or let the long-armers work their magic. I really do want to quilt it myself, but I don't think I can have it done by Xmas or E's birthday (which are only two days apart). Either way, I have to make a choice very soon.

What would you do if you were in my shoes? That shouldn't be too hard since I'm sure every quilter has felt the time crunch around the holidays and been torn between projects! I really, really want to work on my TARDIS quilt and have it done by Xmas too. Decisions, decisions...

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Sshhh---don't tell!

I've been working on a quilt project so secretive I'm not technically supposed to be writing this very post until after December 25, but I have to share just one blurry iPhone photo!

My sewing room does triple duty as my home office and Eddie's play room. You'll also notice it's a fine space to pass out on nearly-completed quilts after eight hours of on-and-off sewing, stitch ripping, and pinning.

Can you guess what it is? (Hint: It's an extremely geeky.)

For you non-Whovians, it's a TARDIS (Time and Relative Dimension in Space) in flight! The time machine piloted by the Doctor in Doctor Who is instantly recognizable among geeks (myself included).

So this whole thing started coming together about a month ago when my younger sister, Kylie, was going on about how she couldn't think of anything really cool to get her boyfriend of two-ish years for Christmas. After two hours of Etsy shops and nerdy Tumblrs, she was starting to seriously consider making a quilt (which she's never done before) from a pattern she insisted Kathy and I could draw (which I had never done before). After a little hemming and hawing, Kylie and I were on our way to The QP to ask Kathy for her input. She was game on for a quilting challenge—as always—and we drew up the pattern just hours later.

Unsurprisingly, I started pulling fabric for my own TARDIS quilt not long after seconds after Kylie started filling one of the cutting tables with the bluest blue bolts for further inspection. As sisters do, we quibbled over the perfect shade of TARDIS blue (she won) and purple backgrounds (I won) until we had two stacks of fabric, a roughly-sketched pattern, and a cutting list. Did I mention that I'm just learning how to quilt and my sister last touched a sewing machine in high school? Talk about the blind leading the blind!

I'll share more details about our quilting adventure and show you some shots on my quilt when it gets a little closer to Xmas (so there'll be lesser chance of spoiling Kye's fantastic gift).


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Saturday Sampler 2014

By the end of the year, I will have finished two quilts (though neither are entirely pieced yet), so I'm already looking on the lookout for new projects and patterns. Since I'm so busy taking care of E (who's now almost eleven months old!) and working, having two big projects dominate my design wall, sewing table, desk, and all other surfaces in our study is making me a bit crazed. Plus, it seems like I'm rescuing cut fabric from E's drool-drenched hands every time I hop off my treadmill desk!

To solve the fabric-clutter issue, I'm thinking about making one of our Saturday Sampler 2014 quilts. Since I only receive the fabric for one block every month, small, colorful piles of neatly folded fabric (read: baby magnet) will be kept to a minimum or at least have a spot somewhere out of reach. Now I just have to decide which one to make! Which one is your favorite?

If you haven't participated before, here's how it works: our Saturday Sampler (SS) is a unique twist on a Block of the Month program. First, you choose one of four quilts (each in a different colorway or theme), purchase the pattern, and pay $5 for your first block. If you bring both your SS punch card and the previous month's finished block to us on one of three designated days (the second Saturday of the month and the following Monday and Tuesday), you get your next block for FREE. On the occasion that life gets in the way and your block isn't finished in time or you can't drop in on one of the SS days, that month's block is $5. More often than not, QPers make an entire quilt for just $5 or $10 plus the optional finishing kits!

Only one block per quilter can be free each month, so those who choose to do two, three, or all four quilts pay $5 per month for those quilts' blocks (regardless if their sewn or not). It's an extremely economical way to make a quilt and it's tough to resist the four very different colorways and patterns Kathy and Mary handpicked. Learn more about each design in the Facebook album I'll be adding each month's blocks to all year or scroll down for a preview.

Ella Mae's Sampler  (78''-x-78'')  Style: Brights | First Block: $5 | Pattern: $7.99
Ella Mae's Sampler  (78''-x-78'') 
Style: Brights First Block: $5 Pattern: $7.99

Abigail's Sampler (50''-x-60'') Style: Country | First Block: $5 | Pattern: $11.99
Abigail's Sampler  (50''-x-60'')
Style: Country First Block: $5 Pattern: $11.99

Autumn Jewels (84''-x-84'') Style: Christmas | First Block: $5 | Pattern: $19.99
Autumn Jewels  (84''-x-84'')
Style: Christmas | First Block: $5 Pattern: $19.99 

Paris in the Fall  (66''-x-86'') Style: Black, White & Red | First Block: $5 | Pattern: $22.99
Paris in the Fall  (66''-x-86'')
Style: Black, White & Red | First Block: $5 | Pattern: $22.99

Sign up starts today, Wednesday, November 20th, but not all of the patterns will be in-stock until tomorrow, Thursday, November 21st. Call the shop at (517) 423-0053 or drop in to sign up. 


Monday, November 11, 2013

Busy Blocks: Fabric Regret

After throwing most of my Busy Blocks quilt onto my oh-so-handy design wall and photographing it for this very post, I decided I hated the red-and-white stripe. ):

Okay, I don't hate it, but it doesn't work with the other small-scale and tone-on-tone prints. I still really like the print, but it's not at all jiving with its Busy Blocks companions.

Luckily, it just so happens I know exactly where to get a replacement red!

After much hemming and hawing, I found my perfect print in a basket of remnants. It's still a stripe, but it's much "skinnier" and the tone is a better match.

Do you think I made a good swap? The only issue I have now is how much the orange hexagon's middle stands out now that the chunky stripe is gone. *Sigh* Does the second guessing go away when I have ten or a hundred quilts under my belt?


Thursday, October 31, 2013

Half-Square Triangles: Ruler Method vs. Traditional Method

My current project, Busy Blocks, uses half-square triangle blocks to turn would-be squares into octagons. If I were doing this on my own, I probably wouldn't venture too far from the pattern's instructions, but since I have Kathy showing me the ropes, she did a little calculating and put Creative Grid's Multi-Size 45-Degree/90-Degree Triangle Ruler in my hand. The name's a bit of a mouthful, but, to put it simply, it's a two-in-one ruler that makes cutting (and sewing) half-square and quarter-square triangles easier and more accurate than the traditional draw-stitch-twice-cut method.

To fully appreciate the ruler method, I had a quick lesson on the traditional way of making half-square triangles. In the past, quilters cut squares instead of triangles, placed two of 'em right sides together, drew a line from corner to corner, and stitched a 1/4" to both the right and left of the drawn line.

Popular but prone to a variety of issues, the traditional way of making half-square triangles almost made Kathy herself, a quilting veteran, throw in the towel early in her quilting career. "I almost gave up on this shape. I couldn't EVER get them to consistently come out square and the correct size," says Kathy. "Then I found this tool and my whole life changed—cue the dramatic music and the footage of a sky clearing after a storm— because I could EASILY make an accurate half-square triangle!"

: : : : :

If you'd rather watch than read, Kathy explains the pros and cons of both methods of making half-square triangles in this oh-so-handy YouTube video. I've referenced it a couple times since my latest lesson and it's a FANTASTIC resource:

To summarize, there are A LOT of ways to go wrong with the traditional method:
  1. First off, what's with the 1/8-inch measurements??! As a newbie, cutting is stressful enough without worrying about increments that are the width of my mouse pointer. 
  2. Even though I'm totally a pen person, Kathy has a point about dull pencils messing with measurements. As it dulls, your 1/4-inch stitching becomes more and more off as your pencil line gets fatter and fatter. However, it seems like mechanical pencils could fix this problem—in theory—if you're diligent about breaking off the tip of lead when it shows any signs of widening or dulling. (I didn't run that by Kathy, but I'll add it to my things-to-try list of quilt to-dos.)
  3. Unfortunately, the beloved Identi-pen marker isn't here to save the day this time. Thin markers easily catch on the fabric, making  it difficult to draw accurate line.
  4. To quote Kathy, it's "mind-numbingly boring to draw accurate lines over and over and over and over again!".  Sure, it's less of a problem if you're making four half-square triangles; but it becomes a HUGE issue when you're making a queen-sized quilt with an unearthly 200 half-square triangles or whatever. 
: : : : :

With the half-square triangle tool, it's simple "quilt math"—add a 1/2-inch seam allowance (1/4-inch for both sides) to the finished size of the block. Expecting a catch? There's not one!

With one roll of the rotary cutter, half of the block is cut and ready to be paired up.

Continue down the strip, flipping the ruler and lining it up to the fabric before making quick and easy cuts.

In no time at all, I had four neat piles of half-square triangles, ready to be paired up and sewn!

Since Kathy changed up the directions, I had a little calculating to do to figure out just how many pairs I needed. It was ten minutes of work wasted, because I quickly abandoned my list and opted to just do it by sight, sewing together pairs to complete my design wall from the top down

Sewing just three pairs together made the quilt start to "appear"! I'm not gonna lie—it was pretty damn exciting to go from fabric squares clinging to batting to an "actual" quilt-in-progress on a design wall. 

I feel a sewing binge coming on!


Sunday, October 6, 2013

No Time to Sew ):

Apologies! Between adding new inventory to the online shop and trying (read: failing) to sleep train E, I haven't been able to devote much time to sewing. I'm hoping this shot of my little helper photobombing my makeshift photoshoot this afternoon will help make up for the lack of posts. c:

Copyright 2013 | See Teri Sew

I'm determined to figure out the half-square triangle ruler this week, so stay tuned!


Thursday, October 3, 2013

Busy Blocks: Beginner Cutting Tips

Soooo who thought sewing would be easier than cutting? *raises hand and looks around* Just me? Well, that figures. I find myself almost sweaty-nervous (sorry for the overshare) every time I even think about the next time I have to break out my rotary cutter. My hesitation stems from the idea that cutting is first step that has the potential to really screw you up. Yes, fabric selection is crazy-important, but that doesn't affect the more technical parts of quilting like matching seams and not "cutting off" (with a sewing machine) the points of every half-square triangle block (try as I might).

Sensing my nerves, Kathy assured me that this quilt and all of my future ones can "absorb a million small different errors." Taking her far too literally, I felt a sense of panic wash over me—if I'm freaking out about this one issue, how many millions am I ignoring?! I snapped back to reality when Kathy told me to focus on what'll absolutely drive me crazy. (Who guessed "Everything" was my reply? You know me too well.) Focus, she told me, on "perfecting" those things and take a proverbial chill pill instead of worrying about every detail. As long as the same error isn't made over and over and over again, the quilt will look perfectly fine. Here are a few other top tips from Kathy on cutting:

  • "Having the top of the ruler move a little each time a strip is cut is a really common error that has to be protected against. That's one big reason I love the anti-skid circles on Creative Grids' rulers, but it can still happen if you're not careful."
  • "Lots of beginners get overwhelmed when they have a large chunk of fabric. Just concentrate on what fits on the mat and then readjust when you've cut to end of the mat."
  • "Keep cutting, cutting, cutting! It WILL get easier and easier. Beginners are normally afraid to cut, but, with practice, I promise it will get easier."
  • "Strips are always cut on the width of fabric unless you're instructed to cut lengthwise. Patterns always make a big deal out of cutting lengthwise, so don't be scared of missing this step. Double check yourself early on by making sure the strips have selvage at the top and the bottom."

For Busy Blocks, cutting wise, I had it pretty easy (Kathy's words, not mine). After she altered the instructions a bit to include the half-square/quarter-square triangle ruler, she gave me a rundown on understanding the cutting instructions. All but a few pattern designers base their cutting charts on fabric being 40 inches wide (enough though high-quality, 100% cotton quilting fabric is typically 44/45 inches) to account for wiggle room. With that in mind, she gave me a quick rundown on squares. If, for example, a pattern wants us to cut two 5-inch strips (with the intent of squares being cut from said strips), you can get eight squares (40-inch wide fabric ÷ 5-inch squares) out of each strip for a total of sixteen squares (eight 5-inch squares × two strips). Yeesh, that's a lot of numbers. As a visual learner, I think this explains it a bit more clearly:

How to figure out the number of strips needed for squares | See Teri Sew

: : : : :

After my lesson, I got to work. Over the course of two days, I managed to cut out all of my squares and develop a major backache. (No one warned me about quilting requiring stretching!) Now, even though I forgot to photograph this joyous occasion, I did, at least, think to snap a photo when I was halfway done.

The squares are destined to be the outside of the hexagons and the long bits of folded fabric will be the block centers.

Next up is tackling half-square triangles! Since I also record and edit all of The QP's YouTube videos, I have a general idea how to use the HST ruler. If you need a refresher—I know I will after my next class—watch our tutorial on making half-square triangles both the traditional way and with a handy ruler.


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Pillowcase Photo Shoot

Not expecting to gain so much speed on The QP's ramp,
E nearly took me and my camera out on arrival.
Every once in awhile we get a wild hair and decide to dork out for photos destined for the newsletter or Facebook. In the past, our "photo shoots" involved Kathy using seasonal props or holding up her favorite book of the moment. She is always a good sport, but usually tries to steer me toward a shot that doesn't star her. Lucky for her, my newest "model"—E—doesn't mind being photographed in the least! I've yet to solve the issue of him crawling away from (and into) me, but it's a work in progress.

So while planning October's classes, Kathy mentioned the need for an updated pillowcase photo for Cocoon Pillowcases. Without considering the logistics, I volunteered E to pose with the pillow. In hindsight, I really should've considered his love of crawling in the opposite direction a little bit more...

I mean, consider his facial expression when we plopped him on the pillow for the first time. Those baby blue eyes say it all—he's a runner, er, well, crawler. Regardless, we should've realized at this point that this impromptu photo shoot going to take up a bit more time than we'd allotted; but I wanted the shot and Kathy was more than willing to play baby wrangler.

I think it's safe to say E had no intention of staying on the pillow for more than a second or two. Challenge accepted!
After ten or fifteen minutes, we were going nowhere fast. Recognizing this, Kathy suggested we change it up. Thinking it wouldn't hurt (maybe he's distracted by the animal novelty fabric?), we set up on the pair of stairs leading to the upper floor of the shop. Wanna know what our model thought of our new surroundings?

Yup. That about sums it up.
With two of us determined to get a usable shot and one of us wanting to chew on a pillow (I'll leave the specifics to your imagination), we were ready to wrap the shoot and consider this plan a loss newsletter-wise. (Just for the record, photographing your adorable, good-natured little one for thirty minutes and calling it work is a total win.)

Unfortunately for the newsletter, we never did get a good photo of both the full pillowcase and E, but I figure his cuteness quotient makes up for the missing pillowcase cuff. Alas, this shoot probably marked the end of his pillow-modeling career. Don't worry, E—there's always medical school.

Though each it cute in their own way, the bottom right photo made the cut for the October newsletter.


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Busy Blocks: Sewing 101

My first official lesson took place in-shop because I needed to pick up my machine and some basic quilting supplies. After equipping me with a cutting mat; a rotary cutter; two Creative Grids USA rulers (a 6-1/2''-by-18-1/2'' ruler and a quarter-square/half-square triangle ruler); and the sewing tote Kathy made up for me six years ago (more on that later!), we sat down at the machine I'll be using for the immediate future—Kathy's Janome Jem Gold. Before getting down to business, she filled me in on why this machine is great for beginners:
"I took a trip to Chicago about twelve years ago and had tons of sewing to do, so I brought my Singer Featherweight. I worked all day, got to the hotel to get some samples for the newsletter made, and—AAARGH!—my machine wouldn't work! The next morning I went out, found a quilt shop that sold machines, and asked for the most lightweight machine they had. They sold me my Jem Gold and I loved it enough to go to Janome and ask if I could sell just that machine. They agreed and we sold TONS of Jem Golds! To me, it's the best, super-lightweight sewing machine on the market. Even though I've worked my machine hard, it's sewn great for a dozen years with no issues at all!"
E and Kathy photobombed my "beauty shot" of the Jem Gold.
E and Kathy photobombed my "beauty shot" of the Jem Gold.
After becoming reacquainted with machine basics like lowering the presser foot, threading needles, and manually adjusting the needle, Kathy put me on bobbin-making duty. Now, I don't know if it's a newbie or Teri habit, but I can't bring myself to push the pedal all the way down! It takes me about three times as long as Kathy to wind a bobbin but, since my "method" is sans aggressive sewing-machine noises, I plan on sticking with my way for a while longer.

Thanks to the handy diagrams on the machine, it didn't take long to get most of the pre-pedal-to-the-metal steps down. Trimming the emerging thread to make it flush with the bobbin is the only bit I get hung up on. Since I don't want my bobbin having a week-whacking effect on my top thread, I need to commit this step to memory yesterday. (: As for color, Kathy advised me to stick with neutral for piecing Busy Blocks, saying cream, beige, or tan thread would work just fine with my fabric.

The fruits of my labor? A plastic case of eight, Aurifil-2314-filled bobbins.
The fruits of my labor? A plastic case of eight, Aurifil-2314-filled bobbins.
Since I'll be using a half-square/quarter-square triangle ruler to make my half-square triangles in lieu of the traditional method, Kathy adjusted my cutting chart and set me loose to start cutting strips. Due to my irrational fear of the ruler moving, less than twenty minutes of cutting/holding down the ruler ridiculously hard was making my fingers ache. Another result of my misplaced fear was a lack of stylish photos of me rotary cutting. (Please try to mask your disappointment lol.)

Mr. E had other plans for my Creative Grids ruler.
Mr. E had other plans for my Creative Grids ruler.
Lucky for us, we got quite a bit in before E decided adult arms were more comfortable than the floor. I attribute part of his patience to his love of acrylic. It's quickly climbing his list of favorite things which tops out with feline tails, Sophie the Giraffe, funny faces, and picking up the most miniscule bits of carpet fuzz (in no particular order).


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Busy Blocks: Choosing Fabric

Choosing a pattern for my first project wasn't the easiest task. Along with a couple simple quilt patterns (like the classic beginner's quilt Rail Fence), Kathy ordered the book Modern Baby for me to peruse. Of the fourteen patterns, I fell in love with, umm, most all of 'em. Designed by a bunch of different pattern designers and bloggers, the quilts are all pretty modern, fresh takes on classic quilt blocks. What really got me was that all of the quilts are small so it's not "too much" for my first project. I mean, I can't imagine I'm going to have "quilter's regret" or "quilting fatigue" on my first go-round, but why chance it, right?

I'm lovin' the whimsy of the cover quilt, Bubbles, by Dana Bolyard.
Some of the quilts would be a little challenging for a newbie, but Kathy okayed one of my faves, the very first pattern in the book, Busy Blocks. Shea Henderson's simple (but sooo not boring) design caught my eye immediately, so I was giddy when it became a contender.

Photo Credit: Checker Distributors
Since it's nothing but squares and half-square triangles, I'll only have to worry about using two rulers—Kathy's go-to quilting ruler, Creative Grids USA's 6-1/2''-by-18-1/2'', and their quarter-square/half-square triangle ruler, Multi-Size 45 Degree/90 Degree Triangle Ruler.

Now, compared to choosing fabric, picking a pattern was cake. I meandered around The QP, pulling bolt after bolt until I had three or four different colorways piled chaotically on one of the cutting tables. One hour and one bored baby later, I had zip, zero, notta.

Eddie resorted to playing with a (well-attached!) stray thread on a dino-filled sample while I buzzed around the lower floor.
Having seen quilters in my predicament time and time again, Kathy suggested I pick out just one fabric. Starting in the purples (since I love me some eggplant), I pulled a violet dot by Robert Kaufman.  Along with the idea to have four main colors instead of two, a teal Michael Miller joined up and snowballed the rest of the color-picking process.

I ended up with cantaloupe orange, bright red, teal and violet as the primary colors (for the main parts of the "hexagons"). Choosing the fabric for the inner squares was easy and, to tell you the truth, a bit of a relief. The QP has over 7,000 bolts of fabric and it's a bit overwhelming (for a newbie, at least) to pick just 8 prints. I questioned my choices nearly the whole time with questions like What if this isn't the right shade of teal?, What if I change my mind after I cut it up?, What about turquoise?, and Is this teal-y enough?

The secondary fabrics that make up the inner blocks won't touch any of the other secondaries.
Kathy helped keep the (crazy) second-guessing voices at bay long enough for me to cut the yardage I need. By the time I was done rotary cutting and the fabric was neatly folded, I was (and still am!) loving my fabric choices . . . and only slightly rethinking the big red-and-white stripe.

When you pick fabric for a quilt, do you typically bring a friend for a moral support/a second opinion/a shoulder to cry on?

Friday, August 30, 2013

Keyboards and Quilting

Now, I'm not inherently crafty. That is, unless you count:

  • Slapping hot glue, some straw, and orange paint on an empty laundry detergent jug and calling it a Halloween decoration
  • Making Shrinky Dinks
  • Latch hooking half of a pig pillow 
  • Churning out beaded keychain animals (namely lizards) like there's an impending bead shortage

Truth be told, I haven't actually done any of these things since I was about, say, twelve, but the creativity, photoshop, color choice list is still a good measure of my level of craftiness. Even if I'm not exactly the second (or hundredth) coming of my girl Martha Stewart, I still consider myself a creative person. It's just that my medium is Photoshop, not a knitting needle or a bottle of Mod Podge. There's even a bit of overlap between what I do—create with a keyboard—and what I'm learning to do—quilt. Yes, the two couldn't be more different on the surface, but there's common ground in their bones; namely, precision and color.

First up—precision. Though I haven't yet started my classes with Kathy, nearly two years of working at The QP have taught me that points matching is kind of a big deal. Okay, so it's a really big deal. True story—the very first photos of quilt blocks that I posted on our Facebook page were edited in a way that cut off several of the points. Whoops! Kathy told me, "Quilters neeeed to see the points. It's what we work so hard on!" From cutting to sewing, I'm hoping my triple-check-the-locks-OCD comes in handy in my quilting endeavours. Time will tell!

Next, we have color. In graphic design, color can make or break your design. Something as simple making a button chartreuse or lime green can alter how people respond . Hours upon hours of watching customers choose fabric has taught me it's all for naught if the colors don't work. Though what works for someone may make another gag, loving your colorway is a very personal and pivotal decision.

Since I'll be sharing my fabric choices with the you and everyone else on the Internet, I'm really pulling for minimal gagging. Here's a sneak peek of a quarter of my colorway for my first project.

I'm a sucker for dark purple!


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

"Hello, hello, hello!"

I'm a rarity in the quilting world—someone who doesn't quilt or sew! When I worked in-shop (more on that later), my status as a "non-quilter" came up frequently and our customers were always surprised. "How can you not quilt when you're surrounded by inspiration all day?" they'd ask. Well, as you can tell from the name of my blog, I'm on my way to dropping the "non" in "non-quilter".

Before I get carried away, let me introduce myself—my name is Teri Seal and I work for The Quilt Patch, one of the largest quilt shops in Michigan. As my mother-in-law, Kathy Seal, owner of The QP, would say, I'm the resident "Computer Girl". I run the online shop, post on Facebook, edit QP Quilts & Co. patterns, and so on. After my son, E, was born at the end of last year, my husband, Gordie, and I decided it was best for me to be a stay-at-home mom. Swapping my 9-to-5 job for his beyond-adorable face was a no-brainer. Even though it means working in ten-minute increments and often late into the night, it's completely worth it to not have to miss one second of his childhood.

Although I'm anti-self-portrait, I don't want you to have to make
up a fake Teri in your head. Here I am, glasses glare and all!
In fact, E's a big reason why I've chosen to try my hand at quilting. Though I'm busier than ever, it's something I've wanted to try for a couple years (shhhh—don't tell Kathy). Plus, none of my hobbies—reading, watching movies, baking, sledding*, and playing board games—involve making something long-lasting, something greater than the sum of its parts. I find it fascinating that something so meaningful and cherished can be created by sewing bits of fabric together. Though it may be awhile (if ever) before I'm in family-heirloom territory, I've gotta start somewhere and there's no better time than now!

*Can you still consider something a hobby if you only do it a couple times per year? Hope so!!

This is the first of many photos of E. You're welcome! C: