Friday, November 27, 2015

Holiday stuff

Finally a bit of progress is being made on the Christmas tree skirt.

Unless I am making something as small as a table runner, I run into a big problem finding a space large enough to put the top and backing sandwich together.
Any space I can find on our floor is both too small and covered in dog hair.

Thursday I thought of going to church early and use the time before choir practice to assemble the parts on the floor of the fellowship hall as I did with Ben's quilt.

Then I heard my husband complaining to one of our kids over the phone that since one apartment attached to our house is vacant, we were short of money for the past two months.

Ahah! That is the bad part. The good part is ... there was a nice clean floor space large enough for spreading out the top. I grabbed the key and went over.
Yesterday was grey and rainy and cold but there was enough light from the window to lay out the top and piece enough of the donated batting scraps together. I am not familiar with the various donated battings but I found enough of one kind that seemed suitable and whipped the joints together to fit the shape I needed.

I then decided to baste the top to the batting and I am glad I did. There was just enough light to finish up and it made things much easier when I added the backing this morning. Here it is, spread out in the sunny room ... a little contrasty for a good photo but fastened securely with safety pins.

After trimming the edges, I carried it up to the loft where the light was not so bright to see if I could get a better shot.

Since the ceiling is low, I couldn't get the camera back far enough to fit it all in but I think you can get the idea.

I have decided to quilt the whole thing as one and then cut the opening and the center out and put on the binding.

Right now I am quilting in the ditch around the star pieces. I plan to quilt outside the snowflakes and add a design in each of the star pieces ... maybe a holly leaf or tree shape. I am just so glad to have this moving along and I think I can finish up and get it into the mail in time. (I had really hoped to mail it along with Ben's quilt but I waited too long for the snowflakes to fall).

Looking out the apartment window yesterday, I noticed our Biwa (Loquat) full of flowers on every branch, so today I took my camera over for a shot.

This tree came in a pot from our last house. I had set the pot on a dirt strip between the neighbor's house to the south, and the low blocks where our own wall used to be. (Seeing no point on two walls six inches or so apart, we had removed our wall when our house was rebuilt, the space filled with dirt).

Well, the pot had fallen on its side but the tree took over, finally splitting the pot and sending roots through the bottom. By now the tree is about 10 or 12 feet tall and though I keep trimming it so it will not bother the neighbor, it carries on with gay abandon. By late spring all these branches will be covered in fruit. I guess I need to start looking for recipes that use Biwa.

Our own Labor Thanksgiving day was on Monday, but that was a working day for me. Since today is Thursday in the States, and the Oregon gang was gathered together to celebrate, we had a wonderful skype call ... the Japan bunch and the Oregon bunch together. Not as good as some of my blogging friends in the states might have had in person, but for us, a great treat. Hopefully there will be time for a turkey at Christmas. Holiday Blessings to you all.


  1. Your start on your Christmas tree skirt looks nice Julie :)
    Happy Thanks Giving to you and your family.

    1. Thanks Isa, I am so glad this project is now moving along.

  2. Amazing how you received just the space that you needed. :) The tree skirt looks great! We had our Thanksgiving back in October and did manage to get most of the family together in one place, although I don't think we'll manage that for Christmas.

  3. That is a beautiful tree skirt and fun that a space was there, just when you needed it;)
    I think being able to Skype with the kids is wonderful, so nice that we can see and talk with those who are far away.


  4. Lovely tree skirt, super pattern. The loquat tree, we had one when we were first married, way back in the early 1960's, Huge fruit. Enjoy them.

  5. seems there is always a silver lining if you can find it.. and take advantage of it xx

  6. Great idea for a basting place. Hope it gets rented soon. I vacuum an vacuum, and can't get all the dog fur up, either.

  7. Oh I love the tree skirt - the snowflakes are such a wonderful touch. Turkey dinner - one of my favorites - and especially the leftovers

  8. Oh your tree skirt looks very nice. Very cheerful indeed. I actually never seen any Biwa flower and didn't know they flower this time of the year. Lucky you!! Yum!

  9. There's always an "up side", isn't there? Looking good!

  10. The tree skirt is looking wonderful with all the individual snowflakes.
    Great idea to use the other apartment. Every cloud has a silver lining!