Thursday, August 30, 2018

The end of Summer (and a great Dahlia quilt)

My kids are now back to school. When summer arrives, it always seems like I will not possibly manage 10 whole weeks with everybody under one roof. Then, 10 weeks blow past in the blink of an eye. I have done some work over the summer, but mostly in the early mornings while everyone slept.  Since we went on vacation the first 2 weeks they were off, it has been nearly 2 months of just doing things around home. The summer has been warm, which I do love. It lets us go to the beach more often. Maine beaches are only palatable when it is over 85. Two of my kiddos still love to wander around with me. The 16 yr old thinks I'm old and inappropriate to be seen with - except for the many driving hours we have had to do in pursuit of his license. THAT is as painful for me as it is for him probably!

This week dealt us a big blow. On Sunday I realized our oldest cat (who was only 10-1/2) did not eat. We determined that she'd barfed Saturday's dinner (a kid failed to relay that info...after all one cat puking hardly constitutes an emergency until she refuses food the entire next day). On Monday she went to the vet in the early morning. At this point, I was very surprised she was as sick as she'd obviously gotten overnight. My husband objected when I told him I thought she really was on her way out, and we ought to keep her home. He took her anyway. During the day, I stopped by with the kids. The vet said Sally had improved, but she had no idea what was wrong. In the late afternoon, she called to say we needed to make a decision. THAT decision. Sally had a siezure, and her body was shutting down. I feel so bad for not demanding she stay at home to go through this around people that care for her. Thoughts of her in a cage, with tubes in her, and dogs around her makes me cry. Monday evening, Sophie and I went to see her for the last time, and to bring our girl home for burial. I've never seen my kid cry so much. It was a wretched day. sally had become so much Sophie's kitty.
The next 2 days were hot beach days. I was trying to keep my kids busy, hoping some time away and together would help to heal the sadness. The beach is our happy place.

 It was a "plenty of ice cream" kind of week.
 Even still, it is moments I catch like this that tear at my heart-strings. Clearly she is still processing this loss. As a parent, I want to protect my kids from the  heart ache life brings. I'm not ready for her to lose her innocence, but a small piece of it disappeared this week.
Fortunately, I was 95% finished with this Dahlia Dinner Plate quilt belonging to Jackie Kunkel when our world caved in this week. It was easy to wrap up on Tuesday morning. It is a crazy-complex Judy Niemeyer design that will be released in the coming months. Jackie's rendition of it is soon to be photographed and become their pattern cover!
 I chose a combination of freehand designs and template patterns.
 And of course, some feathers!
 The trick with quilts this complicated is always figuring the most expeditious way to quilt it - ditching areas that need it and catching the fill patterns at the same time.
 It is stitched in 40wt Glide thread in gray, Surperior Magnifico in cranberry, white (brand???) and a pale pink YLI polished poly. All of these threads look very comparable. I also double batted this with 80/20 and wool to show the texture.
 It is hard to tell, but some of the fabrics have cute kitty faces and mouse shapes. The backing has fish bones. It was probably a very good thing I was mostly done before the issues with our cat happened.

The back shows the texture very nicely.
 These fabrics are a soon to be released collection Jackie has with Island Batik...I'm sure she'll chime in and tell me which fabric collection it is. I can't remember.
Have a great Labor day weekend, and find something nice to quilt!


Diane Duplissis said...

Oh, Margaret, my eyes watered up reading about your beloved kitty. I know the hurts so much. Hoping you all heal quickly from this loss. BTW, the quilt is gorgeous!!!

Becky in VA said...

So sorry about the loss of your sweet Sally.

Becky in VA said...

So sorry about the loss of your sweet Sally.

Jenny said...

So sorry to read about the loss of your beloved cat, always so sad to see our pets pass, but I'm sure you and the kids have plenty of happy memories to remember.

Your quilt is looking so good and the quilting outstanding!

LateBloomer said...

Its gorgeous! I'm sorry for your loss. About two months ago we lost our old Japanese Chin. I knew her time had come and we went to the vet to have her put to sleep. She passed away in my arms while we waited for the vet. Its always hard. When the time is right, a new pet seems to help with the healing.

Doug Sobel said...

Love your quilting as always. It was great being able to take a class from you at MQX. Can you tell us how many hours this took?

Pamela Tasker said...

Wow !!! Gorgeous, beautiful stitching!! I think I may have to pull out a few tops I have on my closet shelf !

Katie Pierce said...

So sorry for the loss of your furry family member. The quilting is stunning, is there a reason for using multiple thread brands?


Hello, Margaret! very sorry for your favorite cat and children. Life and children and new worries will lessen the pain of loss. Very beautiful quilt you are quilting. Can I buy this template and sewing scheme anywhere?