Sunday, January 30, 2011

Little Bits...Here and There

Wow!  Another crazy week in my remote corner of the planet! In my work life it was semester grades, the beginning of second semester, two days of inservice training and we hosted our annual basketball tournament!  My dillydally life involved ... the Give-A-Way ...
... here our silly little snowmaid is waving good-bye as she begins her journey to her new home in Iowa!  She is excited to serve PJ as a reminder to make time to dillydally!

A former student and now friend who is attending college belongs to a campus knitting club ... they plan to raise funds by selling cup holders and I offered to come up with a design.  I was thrilled ... and in true Mrs. DillyDally fashion went a bit over the top!  You know ... creating designs with the mascot ... they looked great, but the trouble was ... they wouldn't stay on the cup!  ;-)  Sometimes I am such a fruit loop!  Eventually, I found what would work ...
... yep ... a simple K2P2 rib worked best.  In order to make it thick enough to protect your hands, I needed to make it on size one double pointed needles with a sport weight yarn.
Cast on 52 stitches, K2P2 in circular fashion with double pointed needles until 4 inches.  Bind off and it is done!  I did a 3 x 2 row stripe in her school colors.  Isn't it great to hear that things like a knitting club exists on a college campus?  It is a comfort to know there is a bit of dillydallying going on there as well!  College coeds dealing with stress by knitting ... talk about a win/win!  Love it!

Made some progress on my "Quilty" mittens ... not sure about the color pattern ... I think I need to tweak it.
A bit of progress on my scarf ... it is fun mindless knitting ... great to work on when I'm nearly comatose at the end of the day!
Pulled out Brother DillyDally's graduation quilt and put on one more layer of logs.  I love working on this batik scrap quilt.  Remember ... I do not count the number of pieces in each block until they are finished.  It would become overwhelming.  I just take it one log at a time and celebrate after each!  That way I can have a sense of accomplishment after each step!  It's the dillydally way! ;-)

My supervisor, Teacup is in a pout!  I leave for Anchorage today and do not return until Wednesday evening.  She is upset because when I'm gone ... she becomes a displaced dillydally supervisor.  While I'm out of town, she will sometimes go in the sewing room and yowl.  I always suggest that she supervise Mr. DillyDally, but his activities do not appear to be of as much interest.  She is such a task master!

And today begins an equally busy week ... three days in Anchorage ... but most important ... it is the beginning of  the Iceworm Festival!  We always hold our winter carnival the first week in February!  It is one of our favorite events here in our remote corner of the planet!  I'll be sure to share the details with you as the fun progresses!

I love the morning light this time of the year ... rose pink and lavender ... the colors of spring during the freeze of winter.  It is like nature making a promise that those colors will bloom again in the warmth of summer.

Make time to dillydally this week ... even if it is in little bits!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Silly Snowmaid is Ready to Travel

Drum Roll Please ....
... PJ from ???? who wrote on January 21st ....
"I met you last summer when we both were @ Emily's quilt shop in Bemidji, MN. We got a sneak preview of the projects that Emily & her crew came up with using the Minnesota fabrics! I've been following your blog ever since! Please enter me in your drawing for the darling snowman.
PS I hope to meet you again."
How cool is this?  I'm always amazed at where this dillydally life takes me!  Those who know me ... know that I grew up not far from Bemidji ... that I have family there ... that Emily's Country Cottage is one of my all time favorite shops ... that I travel thousands of miles every year to shop there ... that I plan on taking the QBees here in Alaska shopping there this summer ... and obviously, I meet the most wonderful people there ... women like PJ!  I hope to meet you again too! Can it get any cooler than this?  OMGosh Good Golly!  I love my dillydally life!

PJ ... our silly dillydally snowmaid cannot wait to travel to your home!  Please email me your address right away!

I want to thank all of you who commented and participated in my Give-A-Way!  I'm always amazed that anyone even bothers to read my mostly funsense blog ... let alone be a follower ... or bother to comment.  I love hearing from you ... it was great to hear about your dillydallying!  I was touched by each and every comment ... thank you.  Remember ... make time to dillydally today!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Last Chance for Give-A-Way!

Yep ... today is your last chance to comment and be drawn to receive ...
... this snowmaid making angels in the snow!  Yep ... she too, is dillydallying!

Remember ... this Give-A-Way is my way of celebrating my 200th post which was Sunday, January 20th!  Once again ... here are my Give-A-Way perimeters...
  • You must leave a comment on any post I wrote between Jan. 20 through Wednesday Jan. 26 at midnight Alaska time.
  • One comment per person will be counted and please share something about you and your dillydallying.
  • If you leave a comment and are also a follower, you will be entered twice in the drawing.
  • On Thursday, January 27th, a random drawing will determine who receives the wall quilt.
  • The winner will be announced on a post dated January 27th. 
  • I will personally mail or deliver the wall quilt to the drawing winner!
If you haven't left a comment yet ... please do so today ...
... our little snowmaid is so excited to travel to a new home!  Doesn't she look like she just wiggles with enthusiasm?  Tomorrow I will let you know her travel arrangements!  What fun!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Hearts...of all kinds

Our Guild held a "Time to Sew" session this past weekend.  I was able to attend on Saturday.  We try to hold them monthly ... gosh ... I treasure the time I spend with these women!  It is so inspiring to see what they have been working on ... quilts they've completed ... you can check it out at our guild blog here.

We always have a ton of fun!  This is what happens when you have too much fun ...
... yep ... you end up with "Wonky Hearts" like I did.  Naturally, I was so silly that I didn't even notice it until I had the borders on!  

Last summer, while in Minnesota, QBee Diane and I visited Heavenly Patchwork Quilt Shop and signed up for Sherri Falls, Sweet Pickin's Club.  This pattern was in our last newsletter.  Now I woke Saturday morning with every intention of working on a project in progress.  But the dillydally winds were blowing in a different direction ... and instead ... I decided to make this table topper called "Candy Hearts"!  I never know in what direction those dillydally winds will carry me! ;-)

 Look at the disdain on my supervisor's face ... Teacup even had to make her point by sitting directly on the problem.  Geesh ... she gives me little slack!

So ... Sunday morning my seam ripper and I reignited our intimate relationship ...
... and made the necessary corrections.  In the end ... it all worked out ...
... I can no longer call it "Wonky Hearts" ... it was back to being "Candy Hearts".  This is a fun pattern ... and under normal conditions ... made by a "normal" person it could easily be made in a day! ;-) 

Don't forget ... you still have time to leave a comment ... which could result in winning this ...
my silly snowmaid (yep...I decided she was a girl snowperson) dillydallying by making a snow angel.  She has been quilted and bound and is ready to travel to your home ... where I hope she will serve as a reminder ... do dillydally!  Details of the DillyDally Give-A-Way are available in the previous post.

I so needed Saturday's quilting day ... I love everything about them ... but ... mostly I enjoy the fellowship that is involved when exceptional women gather over a shared interest.  As we work with our hands there are always many stories.  Tales that make us laugh ... some that make us cry ... those that encourage.  Our lives become entwined ... our hearts woven together in life's journey ... it is such a comfort to know that there are others traveling with us. 

Thank you dear readers ... for sharing in my journey by reading this very modest and humble blog.  Take care of your heart ... make time to dillydally!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Celebrating the Dillydally Life!

I love my dillydally life ... dillydalliers celebrate anything and everything that comes to mind ... we are always able to find some reason to celebrate.  Today I'm celebrating two dillydally accomplishments!

First ... remember my New Year's resolution?  It was ...
I will actively recruit and encourage others to adopt the principles of dillydallying!
You can read the post here.  Well ... I recently was informed that I have a convert!  YES!  I know!  I couldn't be more excited!  

I want to officially welcome Melissa to DillyDallyDom (the kingdom of DillyDally)!  She joined our ranks on January 11th!  She lives in New York State and when not dillydallying teaches 4th grade.  In her "Post of Proclamation" she shares the joy of finishing a project because she chose to without guilt attached and how she shamelessly began a new one!  Read all about it here!  I know you will enjoy her blog just as I have! Congratulations Melissa!  I love how blogging has brought so many kindred spirits like yourself into my life!  A terrific reason to celebrate!

See this face ...
... this is the face of a very happy dillydallier!  She plays an important role in the second reason why we are celebrating the Dillydally life today!

Today ... this post ... is my 200th!  I had no idea that it was sneaking up on me until last Sunday while writing the previous post.  A few of you might recall how I celebrated my 100th post last June (here).  I had fun doing that ... and wanted to do something similar ... I thought about it for a few hours and finally found my inspiration.
Nature is always the greatest source of inspiration.  I am always showing pictures from my front deck ... usually with the tide in.  We know it is bitter cold when ... while the tide is receding, a layer of seawater freezes and is left behind.  Yes ... you can and we have skated on it before!  Jack Frost has been working overtime in this corner of our planet!

So ... we will celebrate with another DillyDally Give-A-Way!  I quickly began making this wall quilt that you have the opportunity to win! true dillydally fashion it isn't quite finished yet. ;-)  All I have left is the quilting and binding!  I love this block from the Winter Wonderland pattern by Crab-Apple Hill.  Making snow angels is such a wonderful and seasonal way to dillydally!
Here are my Give-A-Way perimeters...
  • You must leave a comment on any post I write between now (Jan. 20) through Wednesday (Jan. 26).
  • One comment per person and please share something about you and your dillydallying.
  • If you leave a comment and are also a follower, you will be entered twice in the drawing.
  • On Thursday, January 27th, a random drawing will determine who receives the wall quilt.
  • The winner will be announced on a post dated January 27th. 
  • I will personally mail or deliver the wall quilt to the drawing winner!
Remember ... your chances of winning are high!  This is a very humble blog ... coming from a remote corner of the planet ... spreading the power of dillydallying!

May you find many reasons to celebrate and go dillydally!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A New Path...

A trail ... a path ...
... recently, Mr. DillyDally has chosen to change lanes and create a new path for himself.  He has decided to leave a career that he spent the past 30 years building.  We hiked this trail together the morning before a reception was held in his honor this past week.  Later when looking at the pictures I had taken on that hike, I felt they really served as a metaphor for what we are currently facing.  Right now, at the beginning of this path ... we are both unsure what we'll find around the bend ... because we don't know what the future holds, it feels chilly and looks gray.
But ... we have always believed that change is something to embrace ... without fear.  As we travel further down this path, we trust that new opportunities will present themselves ... we are confident it will feel warmer and be filled with color.  We look forward to the new growth we'll experience ...
... it's onward and upward for Mr. and Mrs. DillyDally! 

Sunday, January 9, 2011's cold out there!

Yep ... it's true ... those holiday songs are stilling spinning around in my head ... and the weather we're having helps them remain on the tip of my tongue!  Shortly before New Year's Day ... one of our pacific ocean storms moved in ... the temp increased (in the 40's) ... the rain fell in buckets ...within days all of our snow was gone felt like spring!  But old Jack Frost moved back in and everything is frozen ... again. 
This is the pattern Mr. Frost left on our truck window.  When we got in the truck and I saw this ... I just had to take a picture.  Isn't it beautiful?  Hmmmm ... could frost have been the inspiration behind the traditional feather quilting we find often on antique quilts?  It makes me wonder ... as that is the first thing I thought of when I saw this window!
Since childhood, I have loved the effect that frost has on trees.  It is so beautiful ... it's as if the forest is wearing an intricate gown of lace.  I never tire of nature and all its wonders ... nature certainly is the master designer and has inspired all since the beginning of time. 

Yesterday, QBee Neva and I worked on a couple of 007 projects that involved hand embroidery.  When I dug into my embroidery supplies, I found a few friends that were inspired by Jack Frost as well...
It is part of a Crabapple Hill pattern called, Winter Wonderland.  I love Meg Hawkey's designs!  There are 10 blocks as part of this pattern ... and I only have one left to do before I start piecing the quilt top!  Needless to say ...
... I was inspired!  I never give myself a deadline for this kind of quilt, but with only one block left to embroider ... all I want to do is dillydally with this snow-women!  
So while Mr. Frost continued to work on his winter wonderland ... I sipped a cup of cocoa while my needle and I worked on mine!  What a wonderful dillydally day!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Finally...A Bit of Time with QBees!

The holidays are always so busy ... what am I saying?  The entire month of December is ... well, simply put ... it is nuts!  Two of the QBees (Quilt Buddy) have December birthdays ... and with all the holiday stuff ... we almost missed it! 
We pulled it off ... finally ... with only hours to spare!  We got together on New Years Eve for lunch! ;-)  Because of the holidays, several QBees were unable to come ... but we know how to celebrate in any sized crowd!  Yep ... we're all about the fun and will find any excuse to enjoy ourselves!
I made each of them a set of Minnesota themed luggage tags!  Thanks to Lisa Moore and her pattern ... you can read the back story here.  I used fabric from past Minnesota Shop Hops ... yep ... you guessed it!  These QBees are part of the Alaskan Invasion of MN Shop Hop 2011!
I made two tags for each of them ... one for the bag with their belongings and one for the second suitcase that will hold all the treasures they collect while in Minnesota!  I just had to take a pic of the tag I attached to them!  Hope you can read it ... too much fun!
Here are the Birthday QBees with their tags ... they are serious about their Minnesota Quilt Adventure ... they already have their airline tickets!  Love it!

Do Dillydally Darlings!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Post Holiday Reality

Today was all about reality.

First sign ... I returned to work today... it is fun to hear from my students what they did over the break and what they got for Christmas.  One of them asked me today what my favorite gift was ... of course I loved all my gifts, but if I had to choose a favorite ... here it is ...
... his name is Lightning ... Mr. DillyDally gave him to me ... isn't he just the cutest?  While growing up, we had a pony named Lightning who was a big part of the many adventures I had on the farm.  I've been having fun poking sticks at Mr. DillyDally ... obviously he is a bit worried about my reborn infatuation with Cowboys! ;-)  If confused, read this former post.  Hee-hee ... I'm sorry, but it just makes me giggle ... isn't life fun?
Second sign ... Brother DillyDally returned to college.  I guess it never gets easier to watch your children leave home and build lives of their own.  I admit ... when they are home ... I spoil them.  As a professional dillydallier, I rarely, if ever consent to mending.  Brother brought home four pairs of jeans that needed some serious attention.  Normally I just replace what needs serious mending ... but have you priced jeans for the 20 something male?  I can't afford to replace four pairs and neither can my poor college student!  Being a devout mother, I sewed 14 patches on 4 pairs of jeans that had very skinny legs!  UGH!  I do deserve "Mother of the Decade"! 

It is true that children hold our hearts in their hands.  He brought home additional mending ... the type of mending that I never refuse ...
... this just turns my heart to mush.  My mother-in-law, Nana made her grandchildren flannel pajamas every year for Christmas.  Which meant she had a lot of  flannel scraps on hand ... when Brother was about five she surprised all of her grandchildren with flannel quilts.  Both of the DillyDally children loved them ... used them ... constantly ... they were the preferred snuggle blankets.  When Brother was about 8, he asked me, "When will I be too old to have a snuggle blanket?"  I assured him that a snuggle blanket is something you never out grow.  As a tween attending camps and traveling, we would carefully put his snuggle blanket in the pillowcase with his pillow, so that at night he could touch it without any one knowing.  As a teen, he used it openly and in the fall of 2007 it went to college with him.  

I have replaced the satin binding at least four times ... no original fabric has been visible for at least 8 years ... there are many patches three deep.  We used to count the patches ... we stopped at 100.  He brought it home as it had become so worn, he didn't dare wash it ... so between the two sides ... I lovingly sewed on 25 additional patches.  Yes ... it went back to college with him ... and ... may it be worn even more.
In 2005, Nana made him a new flannel quilt ...this one ... it is beautiful.  I wouldn't let him use it then, I wanted this one to stay intact.  He convinced me that he wouldn't make forts with it ... that it wouldn't go camping ... that it wouldn't serve as a ground cloth in his apartment ... so it left for college too.  It was time ... tough to admit.

Third ... another temporary good bye .... most of the holiday decorations have been packed.  I am an early riser and enjoy having my first cup of coffee basking in the glow of the Christmas tree during the holidays.  What a wonderful and peaceful way to begin the day.

The fourth sign ... I have my sewing room back!  During the bustle of the holidays it becomes a dumping ground ... but on Sunday I reclaimed my dillydally domain!  
My sewing room mascots ... Lightning, Peanut the Elephant and Mrs. Friendly Cow all join me in saying ...
Forget reality and do dillydally!

Hmmmm ... I wonder when Mr. DillyDally will get boots and hat?

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy 2011!

Every where I look ... every where I go ... everyone is talking about resolutions!  Tis the season, I suppose.
 Photo taken by me
The American Bald Eagle is very common here in my remote corner of the planet ... the environmental conditions for them is perfect ... most of the time.  Like us however, life throws them challenges and hardships ... life isn't always fair.
During this past year ... many of us and our fellow passengers in life have had challenges and hardships ... life has sometimes been unfair.  This past week, as everyone was talking about the new year ... I heard a lot of regret ... guilt ... shame ... remorse ... all things that make life even more difficult.

I went back and checked my post New Years Day 2010 ... these are the resolutions I posted a year ago today ...
  • Will dillydally at least a little everyday.
  • Will only work on what feels good at the moment.
  • Will begin new projects on a whim.
  • Will only complete projects when there is the urge to do so.
  • Will continue to add to my current fabric, yarn, kit and pattern collections.
  • Will spend time dillydallying with those who understand the dillydally lifestyle.
  • Will actively recruit and encourage others to adopt the principles of dillydallying.
I am a "work in progress" (as are we all), but I must say I did very well on all but the last one.  So here is my point ... Life is complicated and unfair ... dillydallying is where we should find respite from life's harsh realities!  Do not allow regret, shame, guilt and remorse bleed into the part of your life that brings you the healing power of calm and joy.  There are no UFO's only projects in progress!  So what if your sewing room is a mess as long as you're creating!  Get organized only if it makes you happy!  Unused fabric and yarn that has been stored for years is now vintage ... it has increased in value ... rarity does that you know!
Photo taken from Google Images
Are you feeling the peer pressure?  I want you to join me in living the dillydally lifestyle.  Soooo ... my primary resolution for 2011 is ... I will actively recruit and encourage others to adopt the principles of dillydallying!  The American Bald Eagle serves as a symbol of freedom ... my hope is that you will experience the freedom and peace that dillydallying can bring.
Happy New Year!  Do dillydally!