Feature · I Wish You a Merry QAL

I Wish You a Merry QAL Block 5!

I am so proud to share the Snowman block I designed!  I used Moda Grunge Evergreen, White Paper, Onyx, and Red for the piecing portion of the block.  Mr. Snowman’s nose is a Moda Grunge Orange scrap.

When we first started planning this QAL, I jumped at the chance to make a Snowman block!  Snowmen are my favorite thing about winter and the holidays, especially cute snowmen.  As you can see, I made a lot of not-so-cute and not-so-proportional snowmen through the different iterations of the design I tried.

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weekly update

Happy 1 year Blogiversary to me!

Can you believe it’s already been a year?  For those of you who have been reading since the beginning, I very much so appreciate you, and thank you for reading! (I also appreciate those of you who may have found me during the last year as well!)  You may have noticed about 2 weeks ago, there were a few days that my blog wasn’t online or you were getting to a page that was under construction. I decided to migrate my blog from being hosted on WordPress.com to a self hosting WordPress.org site.  This post is dedicated to all my fellow newbie bloggers that may run into some of these same issues as they decide to go to a self hosted site.  If you are here for just my quilting adventures, skip to the end of the post for a quick weekly update and what I’ve been up to this past week.

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Blog Hop · Feature

S.W.A.K. Revealed (Piece and Quilt with Precuts Blog Hop)

S.W.A.K. is the 4th quilt in the Piece and Quilt with Precuts book by Christa Watson.  I am so happy to finally be able to share my finished quilt after all the sneak peeks on my Instagram!

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This quilt uses Charm Packs for the half square triangles (HSTs).  So keeping with the spirit of the precuts theme, I decided to use Airmail (quantity 2), Modern Background Ink (quantity 2), and Bella Solid White (less than 1) Charm Packs.  Here is the first lesson:  Not all Charm Packs are the same size! Seriously. You’d think they should all be 5″ square, but with the pinked edges the square is sometimes larger or smaller.

I used my Frixion pen to mark the diagonals on all the lines and centered the two pieces the best I could.  However, it didn’t help with the finished size of the HST.  The pattern calls for 4-5/8″ HSTs, but mine were so inconsistent due to the charm pack size that I made the decision to trim them to 4-1/2″.  So I then started my long process of trimming all 168 HSTs.

I used my design wall to lay out the entire quilt before I made the blocks.  I realized with the Red and Blue blocks I could make the fun Xs and Os in different colors.

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Because I trimmed my HSTs, the final version of my quilt is slightly smaller than what is listed in the pattern, but it’s crucial to have consistently sized HST to have a square quilt!  I tried spray basting this quilt for the first time!  Christa gave a demo of spray basting in her Start Up Quilting Craftsy class, and I was definitely intrigued. I must say, I think I have fallen in LOVE with spray basting. It makes quilting so much easier without having to take out pins all the time.  I followed the square spiral walking foot quilting instructions in the book, and I can only imagine how hard that would have been if there were pins!

So what are my overall thoughts about the pattern and the book?  It’s a great book that goes from piecing instructions to how to quilt that specific design.  Christa has great instructions and great tips throughout the book to help build your skills.

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You can purchase a signed copy of the book from Christa’s Shop or you can purchase a copy using my Amazon Affiliate link.

Don’t forget that the blog hop continues through August 30 so be sure to check out all the other amazing designs and quilters!

Blog Hop Schedule

Last but not least, since I spent all weekend migrating my blog to be self hosted and now can have Rafflecopter giveaways… Here’s a giveaway for an E-copy of Piece and Quilt with Precuts!  The giveaway is open until the Midnight CDT on August 31.  Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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weekly update

Hello from Dallas!

Well ladies and gents, I’m in Dallas this weekend to visit my family and oh em gee it’s hot hot hot!  I know I grew up here, but I’ve definitely grown accustomed to the weather up north!  The best part about visiting is looking for fun new Quilt Shops in the area or returning to some great new ones!  One of the shops close to my parents house is Sew Let’s Quilt It, and they carry yardage of Moda Grunge. I plan on making the #IWishYouAMerryQAL quilt with mainly Moda Grunge with some accent Christmas fabrics. If you don’t know what this quilt is about, check out my previous post!  I’ll be working up a storm to get ready to host this quilt along that starts in a week and a half!

This past week I picked out the pattern and fabrics for my PBQ104 sample quilt.  I’m so excited to get my designing mojo back after this cold spell these last few months!  If you missed my sneak peak on Instagram, here it is!  I’m using Sugar Pie by Lella Boutique for the sample quilt!

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Which brings me to the update on my PBQ103 pattern progress.  I got the sample back from my longarmer and it looks completely rad!  I am making the finishing touches on the pattern and should have it ready for testers soon!  If you would like to pattern test for me, please send me an email from my contact page.  I will contact everyone on my list with the requirements and time frame to complete the block or blocks once I have the pattern ready.

As for a different sneak peak, here is the stack of HSTs from my S.W.A.K. quilt I’m making for the Piece and Quilt Blog Hop coming up next month! I don’t normally press seams open and was feeling the heat on my fingers a lot using my big iron.  I ended up using my travel iron, the baby one, and yay for no more burns!

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I feel like this week got away from me, but I got most of my to-dos complete.  Have a great weekend everyone!

7/21-7/27 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday PM

Projects I want to work on:
EPP Peacock
I Wish You a Merry QAL
PBQ104
S.W.A.K.

Goals for the Projects:
EPP Peacock:  Get another section or two done.  (To do in Dallas!)
I Wish You a Merry QAL: Block blocks and more blocks, the QAL starts Aug 1!
PBQ104: Finish cutting all the fabric needed for the sample; start sewing as ender and leader
S.W.A.K.: Lay out the quilt and start sewing the HSTs into blocks

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weekly update

Friday Finishing Update!

Happy Friday everyone!!!

Surprise! There’s now going to be posts on Friday for my weekly updates!  I decided I will keep my Tuesday post for feature posts, and Friday will be my time to give an update on what I’m working on or what I’ve finished that week! Since I didn’t have an update this past Tuesday, this post covers about a week and half of happenings.

Summer Games Done Quick finished last Sunday with a whooping $1.78 million raised for Doctor’s Without Borders!  That is such an amazing amount of money raised by people watching others speedrun video games.  It was also super amazing to see my quilt on Twitch.tv.

I got the first month’s kit for the new Long Time Gone Quilt Along hosted by Serendipity Woods!  Pam sent us a project box with all the fabric to keep us organized during this journey.  She is always so thoughtful with her Block of the Month Participants!  Here are my month 1 blocks, the bowtie blocks!

Since I finished the PQB103 quilt top, I’ve taken a little detour in other things that aren’t ordinary machine piecing for quilts.  I had 4 more remaining 16″ zippers, so I decided to make 4 more tiny zippy bags.  I have made 6 of these so far and realized they are the perfect size for traveling or storing items.  They are so cute and are complete minus the bias binding on the inside.  The pattern, Tiny Box Zippy, is by Michael Ann Made.

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I also decided to start on an English Paper Piecing (EPP) project.  I used to do quite a bit of EPP last summer, but haven’t really touched anything in over a year.  EPP is a method of basting fabric to a piece of cardstock aka wrapping the fabric over the cardstock, then sewing pieces together with a whip stitch.  Violet Craft came out with this BEAUTIFUL peacock pattern, and I just had to make it.  I’m using Me and You batiks by Hoffman Fabrics for my colors.  With batiks, there isn’t a “right” side to the fabric, so I’m able to better utilize the fabric.  I’ve gotten quite a bit of progress on this peacock!  This is typically a much slower process for me since it’s entirely hand sewn.  I started with the numbers that are printed on the papers, but abandoned that idea when I realized the pattern could be sewn together in “strips.”

As I mentioned a few week’s ago, I am also going to be participating in the Christa Quilts Pieces and Quilt with Precuts Blog Hop.  These pieces have been my enders and leaders for the last few weeks, and I have a sneak peak of all the Half Square Triangles (HST).  I was putting them on my design wall in a chevron pattern to count how many I have created thus far.  I still have a lot more to go, but I can’t wait to see how this turns out.  I’m using Airmail by the Comstocks, Modern Ink Fabric by Zen Chic, and White Bella Solids.

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I used to cross stitch in my life before quilting.  It’s a great portable craft to bring while traveling.  I have been working on these Mario Kart sprites for my husband for quite some time now and I only have Donkey Kong and Koopa left.  I finished all but the last 4 stitches of Donkey Kong in April and just finally decided I should finish him on my work trip this week.  Koopa might take me another 5 years to finish…

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I am so pleased to be announcing the “I Wish You a Merry QAL” that is going to be starting August 1.  I will hosting AND designing a block!  More information to come on Tuesday, and I hope you decide to join us!

Image uploaded from iOS

PBQ104 Status:  I started learning EQ7, so I can digitally simulate the quilt designs.  Hopefully, I’ll pick a design soon to start working on it!

Last but not least, a HUGE shoutout to my sister @sanhawaii08 for finishing her first quilt top!!! It’s the Ombre Gems pattern by Emily Dennis.  I am so proud, and I love this so much I should probably think about making one. (Or just “borrowing” it from my sister, 😛 haha)

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7/14-7/21 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Saturday, Sunday, and Monday PM

Projects I want to work on:
I Wish You a Merry QAL
PBQ104
S.W.A.K.

Goals for the Projects:
I Wish You a Merry QAL: Start working on the QAL blocks to prepare for hosting!
PBQ104: Finalize the design and pick fabric for sample
S.W.A.K.: Using as my ender and leader project.

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weekly update

Happy 4th of July! (+Games Done Quick)

Happy Birthday to the USA!!!  I hope everyone is having a safe and wonderful holiday.

GDQ

This week Summer Games Done Quick (SGDQ) is going on in downtown Minneapolis.  Games Done Quick is a bi-annual charity gaming marathon. Volunteers play games at incredible speed (“Speedrunning”) for entertainment. The event is streamed live online, non-stop, and all donations go directly to the charity.  The event will be raising money for Doctors Without Borders.

Doctors Without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontières) is an international medical humanitarian organization providing aid in nearly 70 countries to people whose survival is threatened by violence, neglect or catastrophe, primarily due to armed conflict, epidemics, exclusion from health care, natural disasters, or malnutrition. MSF provides independent, impartial assistance to those most in need. MSF reserves the right to speak out to bring attention to neglected crises, to challenge inadequacies or abuse of the aid system, and to advocate for improved medical treatments and protocol. In 1999, MSF was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for its work.

So why is this getting mentioned on my QUILTING blog?  Well remember the Mario Pixel quilt that I made a few weeks ago?  It got accepted as a prize submission for the Super Mario Series Warpless Relay Race!  The relay race includes teams of really amazing Mario players that will run through all of the Mario games as fast as possible aka speedrunning.  During the race, people that donate to the cause will be entered into a drawing for the prizes!

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If you like video games (or have kids that do), make sure to check out this awesome event this week as it’s getting streamed online live all week!

The Super Mario Series Warpless Relay is going to be streamed Friday July 7 starting at 6:16PM CDT. (Check the schedule on the GDQ website for updates as they are running behind) I hope you donate to the cause and win my quilt!  If luck isn’t on your side, you can always contact me to commission a video game quilt (doesn’t need to be Mario) for you.

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In other news, I love the holidays because I get so much quilting done!  For example, the sample for Pattern #103? Done. That’s right, the quilt top is completely finished, and it’s amazing.  I need to finish writing the pattern and get the quilt top to Rhonda to be quilted.  This pattern is probably not going to be released for at least a month or two.  Why such a delay?  I would like to get Pattern 104 completed before 103 is released so I can get on a consistent release cycle.  Plus, I don’t want to get a new longarmer and Rhonda is moving back to Idaho to be with her family so there will be a little delay.

I finally made my mini tuffet kit I had purchased from Sew Colorful Quilts.  This thing is so darling! I’m so glad I bought two kits so I can make another one!  This one is in Sweet Marion fabric by April Rosenthal.

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My Bonnie and Camille Barn Quilt is ready to be shipped off to my partner.  It’s quilted, bound, and labeled!  These swaps are so much fun and a huge shout out to Ginger @wifeoferp!

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My previous ender and leader quilt was Frivols 2, and the quilt top is now complete! It gets added to my never ending pile of quilt tops to be quilted.

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7/4-7/11 Weekly Goal:

Available time for quilting:
Saturday and Sunday

Projects I want to work on:
Quilter’s Planner Block
PBQ104
S.W.A.K.

Goals for the Projects:
Quilters Planner Block: Complete this week’s block (it’s a new month!)
PBQ104: Finalize the design and pick fabric for sample
S.W.A.K.: Using as my ender and leader project.

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Tutorial · weekly update

Barn Quilt Block Tutorial

I have no idea what this quilt block is called, but this is what I came up with for the #BCBarnQuiltSwap4 quilt for my partner.  It is made using Half Square Triangles (HST), a single Hourglass block, and no waste flying geese blocks.

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Here’s how you make the 16″ finished block with the colors referencing the block above:
Cutting instructions:
Dark Blue:
Cut 1 – 3 3/4″ square
Cut 10 – 2 7/8″ squares

Pink:
Cut 4 – 2 7/8″ squares
Cut 4 – 2 1/2″ squares

Red:
Cut 1 – 5 1/4″ square
Cut 4 – 2 7/8″ squares

Light Blue:
Cut 6 – 2 7/8″ squares
Cut 1 – 3 3/4″ square

White/Gray:
Cut 2 – 5 1/4″ squares
Cut 8 – 2 1/2″ squares
Cut 12 – 2 7/8″ squares

HST Quadrant:

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  1. Layout of all the squares cut.
  2. Draw a diagonal across 8 white 2 7/8″ squares and 4 pink 2 7/8″ squares.  Match up 4 white with 4 dark blue, 4 white with 4 light blue, and 4 pink with 4 dark blue.
  3. Sew a 1/4″ on either side of the drawn line and cut on the drawing line.  For the white/dark blue, press towards the dark blue; for the white/light blue, press towards the light blue; for the pink/dark blue, press towards the pink.
  4. Trim the HSTs to 2 1/2″ square* and lay out the 9 block quadrant with the 2 1/2″ squares.  There should be 4 total quadrants.
    *Please note there should be minimal trimming.  If you cannot accurately sew a 1/4″ seam, you may want to use 3″ squares rather than 2 7/8″ to give space for trimming.

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Sew each row together and press seams in opposing directions as shown above.  I used the webbed piecing method to do this.

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Sew the rows together and press the rows in the direction shown above.  Repeat to make 4 identical blocks.

No Waste Flying Geese

This method works to make 4 identical flying geese at a time.

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  1. Draw diagonal lines on 4 red and 4 white 2 7/8″ squares.  Place 2 red 2 7/8″ squares on the white 5 1/4″ square as shown.  Repeat for the 2 white 2 7/8″ squares on the red 5 1/4″ square.
  2. Sew a 1/4″ on both sides of the diagonal line and cut the piece apart.  Press the half triangles open.
  3. Using another 2 7/8″ triangle, place it in the corner of the piece as shown.  Sew 1/4″ on both sides of the diagonal line.
  4. Cut on the diagonal line, and press the triangle open.  Make sure to trim the piece to 2 1/2″x 4 1/2″*

*Please note there should be minimal trimming.  If you cannot sew an accurate seam, this method may give you issues.

You should have 4 of each type of flying geese, 8 total so far.

No Waste Different Flying Geese (not sure what to call this)

Since the middle 4 flying geese have 2 of each color, you cannot use the above method. Instead you will cut each of the pieces and make the flying geese with parts.

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  1. Cut the 5 1/4″ white square on the diagonals, so you have 4 triangles.
  2. Cut 2 of the light blue squares and 2 of the dark blue squares in half.
  3. The blue squares are the wings of the flying geese as shown.
  4. Sew the blue triangles to the white triangles.  Remember to trim your pieces to 2 1/2″x 4 1/2″*

*Please note there should be minimal trimming.

Combining the flying geese:

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Sew the flying geese together so that the red makes an arrow and the white makes a square as shown above.  Press all the seams towards the tip of the red arrow as shown in the photo above.

Single Hourglass block

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  1. With Right Sides Together of the 3 3/4″ light blue and dark blue squares, cut across the diagonal.
  2. Sew a 1/4″ seam on the outer edges of the square across from each other as shown.
  3. Press the triangles open with the seams to the dark blue.  Sew the two triangles together to create the hourglass block.
  4. Trim the block to 4 1/2″ square using the diagonal on the ruler.

Sewing the Block together

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Layout the block as shown and sew the rows together.  I pressed seams away from the flying geese and towards the hourglass block as shown.

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Sew the rows together to make the final block.  I pressed the seams away from the center row as shown above.

Ta Da!  There you have it!

The methods I’ve shown here on how to make the HSTs and the no waste flying geese are methods I also used on the Moda Modern Building Blocks quilt I talked about in my last post.

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In other news, I really am getting lazy with the Quilter’s Planner block since the requirement is only one block a month!  That is no way to keep me accountable, but my life is about to get really busy soon.  I finally decided to scrap my 103 pattern for a new one! The new and improved 103 pattern is in the works and hopefully will be done within a month!  I’m really excited I finally decided to make the decision to move on.

I am also participating in Christa Quilts‘ blog hop in August to celebrate her new book release! How cool is that!  I’m going to be showcasing her S.W.A.K. pattern.  You can pre-order her book from her website.  I am also allowed to share sneak peeks of my project too so once I get more than just a stack of fabric I’ll make sure to share!

Piece and Quilt with Precuts Blog Hop

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6/27-7/4 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Friday PM, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday (I love holidays!)

Projects I want to work on:
Quilter’s Planner Block
BCBarnQuilt
PBQ103 New
S.W.A.K.

Goals for the Projects:
Quilters Planner Block: Complete this week’s Block
BCBarnQuilt:  Quilt the block
PBQ103 New: Pick fabric and start making some blocks!
S.W.A.K.: Using as my ender and leader project.

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Tutorial · weekly update

Moda Modern Building Blocks Quilt Tips and Tricks

I finally finished this quilt top! I have a very strong love/hate relationship with this quilt top for many reasons.  Before I started, I had already heard this quilt pattern wasn’t the easiest to follow and that it was wasn’t the easiest of quilts to make.  This blog post is dedicated to my assessment of the quilt, the quilt pattern, and any tips and tricks for assembly.  If you’ve made this quilt before and have things to add to my list, please comment below, and I’ll get this post edited for future readers!

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So here it goes…

Skill Level:

  • Advanced Beginner/Intermediate

Pattern:

  • Each of the block patterns are shown with the finished block, semi-exploded diagram of the block to help show how the block is sewn together, and then cutting instructions.

Block Cutting Tips:

  • The cutting instructions are such that you *shouldn’t* need to trim the blocks if you have an accurate and consistent 1/4″ scant seam.  If you would like to trim blocks, make sure to add 1/8″ to each of the squares that require a single diagonal cut.
  • Square up all the flying geese and Half Square Triangles (HST) before assembling each block. Because I was lazy (at least I admit it), I used the exact cutting instructions thinking I could get away without squaring the block.  Nope, I’m not that consistent with my seams, and it was very apparent on blocks with lots of seams.
  • There is a google doc sheet that shows the full cutting instructions for the block from Liz Harbour.  However, there are a few minor mistakes in the sheet from typos so be on the look out for those.
  • Always cut the largest blocks first.  If you don’t, you may not have enough fabric left.  If you bought the kit and cut the largest blocks first, you’ll end up with a nice stack of Bella Solids to use as scraps in the end.

Sewing Tips:

  • Instead of cutting all the HSTs apart before sewing them back together, look at which HSTs can be made with the method of sewing 1/4″ on both sides of the diagonal line, then cutting the HST apart.
  • For some of the blocks, the flying geese can be made with the no waste method.  So there is no need to cut the different sized triangles in the cutting instructions.  This is if there are 4 flying geese that are identical and have the same colors of corner triangles in the block.
  • Nesting seams takes some extra planning ahead.  Make sure to mark which directions the seams should go for easier assembly.  If you do not want to think, press the seams open to avoid them being bulky.

Pattern Corrections:

  • Block 7: This block is overall TOO small.  If you sew it with the cutting instructions, your block will end up about 18″ square, rather than 18″ finished (18 1/2″ square).  You can fix this by cutting the E pieces 5 1/2″ squares rather than 4 3/4″ and the F pieces 5″ squares rather than 4 3/8″.  After the block is finished, trim the block to size.
  • Block 8: the A piece is too small.  Piece A should be 4 3/4″ rather than 4 5/8″

**There may be other corrections, but those were the ones that were obvious or really off that needed correcting!

Did I miss anything?  Comment below!  Thanks!

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Here are some of the assembly photos of the quilt.  I really do love how this quilt turned out, and it’s the largest quilt top that I’ve made finishing at 84″x96″.

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So I didn’t work on anything this week other than finishing up this quilt top.  I also realized not having to post a Quilter’s Planner block each week has give me validation that I can skip blocks for which I’m just not feeling it.  Maybe I’ll do this week’s block, but we’ll have to see!

6/20-6/27 Weekly Goal:
Available time for quilting:
Friday PM, Saturday AM, and Sunday afternoon

Projects I want to work on:
Quilter’s Planner Block
BCBarnQuilt
Designing for PBQ

Goals for the Projects:
Quilters Planner Block: Complete this week’s Block
BCBarnQuilt:  Complete the quilt top/block
Designing for PBQ: Work on new block designs, making a design a day.

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