Welcome to the
“Building Blocks” newsletter.

Issue Three................................................................ November 2007

What’s been Going on?
....On the up side!
....Stray Cat Clinics, etc.
Newest “Trad” on the block

Math & Quilting & Love Entangled excerpt in Part 2

What’s been going on?

Since the first part of September a lot has been going on in my life that seemed way out of my control. (This is the short version.)

Try as I might, I haven't been able to get a news letter up on a two months schedule! So here’s what was to be the September, then October 2007 newsletter. Now it’s the November newsletter.

I did have it mostly written, then a couple of days before I was ready to put it up something flukey happened to my QuarkXPress design program. It started causing problems the least of which was losing the newsletter I’d almost finished.

I spent the better part of a week getting the computer working correctly. I spent a day backing up all my files (18 CDs!) so I could re-format the hard drive to start all over.

What fun!

It did give me a chance to partition the hard drive and get things a little more organized. I wish there was a way to partition my life and get it more organized!

As I said, the earlier newsletter was the casulity. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It was a hard couple of months! So, I do apologize for the lateness of
the newsletter. I hope things settle down, I could use some not-so-crazy
time in my life!

Stray Cat Clinics — Fur Balls — And my dad

During September and October I was gathering up stray cats for the Feral Cat Spay-Neuter Clinics. I managed to get seventeen stray cats and kittens spayed and neutered!

What a chore! Got to say they caught on real quick about live animal traps!

I had planned to get all but the last mama (who had just had her last litter kittens the first of October) finished up at the last Clinic in October—since there was going to be four days instead of three.

But in the middle of all that, my dad died. Since that took a great deal out
of me, I gave up on trying to catch cats. If you want, read about my dad
and who he was.

So I still have five cats to fix and then I’m finished with shutting down the baby factory!

During that same week I was also trying to get a quilt finished which I promised to Community Cat Care for their annual fundraising event,
The Fur Ball.

After a hectic first half of the week, I ended up spending every spare minute getting the quilt ready to put on the quilting machine's rack. It took most of Friday afternoon and evening getting the quilting done. I was up to 4 a.m. hand stitching the binding to get it finished.

Then I volunteered at the ball and was up until after midnight that night! It was no wonder I spent the next few days trying to catch up (on sleep and other things).

Okay, let's get on with the newsletter!
This is what I was able to recover and a bit more...

Newest Trad on the block

(see the premiere issue of Building Blocks for details on why this is called “Trad”)

In the middle of everything else I went through this fall, I was putting together the “Autumn Specials”.

The beginner projects are done. (All that's left of the Intermediate projects is finishing the writing of instructions, taking them to pdf and uploading them, no small feat!) I will finish that part of the project shortly.

Please check out the specials and give yourself the opportunity to fix up to three quilts this fall. Without even trying very hard. The quilt I’m featuring this month took me only a few hours to assemble the quilt top—way less time than the finishing did!

The Traditional Quilt Block this month is
"Puss in the Corner"

I chose this block because it is the block
I made for the silent auction quilt for Community Cat Care.

See "Laurel's Cats"

These wonderful people are helping me
get the stray cat problem under control
—spaying and neutering (and hopefully adopting out some of the newest kittens).

I wanted to do something special to say
“thank you”.

So I got out my Laurel Burch™ cats fabrics and put together a quilt. (This quilt was made in less than five hours—cutting to finished top. It took almost eight hours to sew on the binding, and to hand-stitch it!)

Let me explain about the way I do binding: Normally I just use the sewing machine to finish the binding—a quick but not necessarily pretty way to go. But with this quilt, I chose to make it extra nice by hand stitching the binding to the back of the quilt—a time consuming task that can be worth it if you want to be fancy.

On a sad note, the wonderful artist, Laurel Burch died September 13, 2007.

You can go to either of these websites to read more about her.
Marin artist Laurel Burch
About Laurel
....I didn't know her creations
....were a multi-million dollar
....I didn't know she suffered
....(for many years) with a rare
....bone disease which eventually
....killed her.
....A disease that was painful and
....she suffered from fractures
....(from as little as a hug).

What I did know was Laurel Burch created some amazing animals in her illustrations. I was drawn to her cats but she also had jungle animals and
the most amazing horses.

"Puss in the Corner"

A bit about "Puss in the Corner": There are about a dozen traditional quilt blocks entitled "Puss in the Corner", including one Churn Dash-like design. There also some blocks called “Kitty Corner”. Some have the “Cat” as squares in the corner and some have the “Cat” as a triangle.

But I’m sure whoever first came up with the name had a cat. The cat was, no doubt, sleeping in the corner (probably near the fireplace or perhaps on the window sill). If it’s in my house, it’s always the corner of a quilt!

I like this pattern because of it’s simplicity and yet when finished, it has a complexity to iT. It is made as a 9-patch quilt, using 4-patch mini-blocks and Chevrons. It was also easy to machine quilt with a “Sleeping cat” motif which I scaled into four different sizes.

This pattern is available and if you purchase it, all of the proceeds will go to Community Cat Care—so help out a great group! Try out a fun, fast Pattern, today.

If you have a cat-loving friend, go find some funky cat fabric and whip up this quilt for a fun gift!

Now lets get down to quilting.

But wait! I've ran out of room...

Guess I need a second part --go here for the rest of newsletter