Blocks, Books and Blueberries

First the Blocks: This month I decided I needed a quilting challenge, something new for me (haha), so I decided to do a Feathered Star.  I will tell you all about the 2 tools I used to make the block in a future post (and if you want a tute, let me know, I will have to make a 3rd block, but hey, 3rd time’s a charm!).  I found a Feathered Star in the Block Library on EQ7 and then I edited the block to make it more my own. I also picked the Quilt Blocks line by Ellen Luckett Baker in an effort to modernize it a bit.

This is my first attempt…

This is my second attempt (much happier with this one!)

Both Stars Together

I’m thinking of turning them in to pillows – but I would love your suggestions too! Wait…it would help if you knew the measurements – 15″ x 15″.

Next the Books: I have received so many touching emails since I spoke of my husband’s deployment. Most about Anne and how she is handling everything.  She is still struggling, but each day she gets a little bit better.  I have been blessed with 2 wonderful book suggestions. The first from my Twitter friend @PhotinaH. She sent us the most wonderful book Hero Dad by Melinda Langdo. If you or your spouse is in the army and you have young children, I highly recommend this book. Anne is only 2.5 and after only 1 week of reading this book, she had the whole thing 100% memorized. She has even “read it” to her daddy on the phone in Afghanistan. She requests this book at least once per day – last night we “read” it without even holding the book. We were in the dark on her bed after she woke from a nightmare and we said it out loud together. She fell to sleep afterwards.

The second book was recommended by my wonderful friend Brandy who writes Bella Bea Quilts, it is called Lily Hates Goodbyes by Jerilyn Marler. The cool thing is that there are two versions of this book, one specific to the Navy and one for all Military.  This book is absolutely wonderful and we have been reading it at least 3 times a week. There are all kinds of suggestions on how to handle the different emotions your child is going through and also different activities you can do, like making a “Memories for Daddy box” – we have done this, I will show you ours on a different post.

These books are both geared towards younger children, I would say 7 and younger, and they are worth every penny. Whenever Anne has nightmares (which is almost nightly), she always requests one or both of these books, she finds a lot of comfort in the, I think they help her feel connected to her daddy and also like she is not alone.

Now for the Blueberries: Anne has a thing for berries. Especially blueberries. My parents have a thing for indulging her…last weekend we went to Ojai to visit my aunts and we learned that one of my Aunts has blueberry plants on her deck!  Needless to say…Anne fell in love.  My parents got up with her on Sunday so I could get some sleep (sleep has been scarce for me since my hubs left) and ran a few errands. They went to a friend’s house to pick up the mail and they went to OSH, Orchard Supply Hardware.  Anne saw a blueberry bush and the next thing I know they come home and she is telling me they bought a “berry pant”!

How was your weekend?

Today I’m linking up with Jenna at SewHappyGeek for Manic Monday and Connie at Quilting by the River for Linky Party Tuesday.

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27 Responses to Blocks, Books and Blueberries

  1. Ken says:

    just an FYI, its OSH, Orchard Supply Hardware.

  2. Barb N says:

    I think that would be so cool to have a blueberry bush. Enjoy! From the photos, I can’t tell the difference between your blocks – they’re both lovely! Would make a great pillow, maybe add a trim around the outside edge.

  3. Kathy J says:

    Love the feather stars!!! Love blueberries too. Anne has good taste! I made some BB muffins for grandkids breakfast just this morning. Glad you have found some resources for her too. Technology is amazing…..Daddy talk-visits are a wonderful salve to this time too.

  4. Lisa L. says:

    I definitely think those are perfect for pillows. Maybe add a border on the outside to make them a bit bigger. I wish I had a blueberry bush! She is going to love that! :)

  5. Alyssa says:

    Oh, this fabric is perfect for those blocks. I think pillows would be sweet!

  6. Jenny says:

    Your blocks are darling!!

  7. Mrs.Pickles says:

    lovely blocks and blueberry bush!! Glad to hear that those books are helping Anne :)

  8. Snoodles says:

    Incredible blocks – the only thing I might add, is that if I made pillows, I might pick one of the fabrics and make piping for the edge? The books sound wonderful, and I wish I could send you and Anne even more berries in a few weeks — our blueberry bushes are loaded down this year! LOL
    Warm hugs to you and Anne!

  9. Carrie P. says:

    great job. I love that block but have never made one because of those tiny 1/2 square triangle. We have blueberry bushes and they are so easy to grow. enjoy!

  10. ~ Julie ~ says:

    I love those blocks! And I would love a tutorial since I’m still fairly new to quilting! What special memories you are making with your daughter while reading together! She is a very lucky girl to have you as her Mommy! :o )

  11. Shauna says:

    Those blocks are amazing! I too would love a tutorial! :)

  12. Beth says:

    I really like those stars – what a cool pattern. Now I’m very curious as to the tools you mentioned!

  13. JoanieinNC says:

    I have enjoyed reading your blog. My children are grown and when I read how young moms and young children having to deal with a missing parent who has been sent out to serve our country it becomes a reminder of the great sacrifices of the whole family. It sounds as though you have found the perfect books to help your daughter through. I’m sure quilting, quilting community and family help you.

    I love your feathered blocks. They are so bright and cheerful! They would make lovely pillows with piped edges. Great job on them.

    Just this morning I made blueberry, oatmeal and peanut muffins. McDonald’s now offers oatmeal with blueberries and was quite surprised how peanuts tasted so good in it.

  14. Photina says:

    I couldn’t tell the difference in the blocks. I think they are lovely!

    I am SO glad that she likes the book. That makes me happy. I know how much the book My Sailor Dad meant to my girls. And it was even better when he made a video through the USO program (United Through Reading) reading the book to the girls. They could read along with him.

    My girls are fans of blueberries. We have two blueberry bushes and they are just bursting for them to grow some so they can pick them and eat them.

  15. Michele W. says:

    Love your blocks and of course, we spoil Anne! She is so much fun.

  16. Susan says:

    The blocks are wonderful. The fabrics very much update the design, especially with that middle square. The blues feel like little signal flags. =) Pillows sound good to me. Or framed for a special corner somewhere.

    Love the sound of those books! I’m so glad you had friends who were tuned into them and shared with you. The memories box sounds like a wonderful idea. Nothing is like being there, but it gives both of you something to save up to share your life with daddy when he returns, and something for him to look forward to as a sharing so he doesn’t miss everything in these months away.

    So, whose house got the berry bush? =)

  17. Dora S. says:

    I love your feathered star blocks–I started making them 30 years ago and have made a lap quilt but really should make something bigger!
    How smart to like blueberries–they are so good for us and are getting soooooo expensive. It’s great that you can grow your own!

  18. Connie says:

    Oh Melissa, I am so glad you have those 2 books to help AnneMarie with this separation! How neat to have a Blueberry bush and I really love your blocks….pillows would be perfect! Thanks for sharing!
    Quilting at the River Linky Party Tuesday

  19. Hello Melissa! I’m beyond thrilled that my book “Lily Hates Goodbyes” is comforting to your daughter Anne. Thank you for mentioning it in your blog and for linking back to my site. I owe Brandy a big ol’ thank you hug when I see her! :)

    I’m on a quest to gather quotes from the children who read “Lily Hates Goodbyes.” If you’re comfortable doing so, I’d love to know what Anne says about the book. What does she like most? Does she act out the emotions? (I found that really helpful with Lily, my granddaughter. As we read the book, she would show me the emotions and say Book Lily’s words–and sometimes throw in some of her own, which was wonderful. The mere act of acting is cathartic.) I invite you to use my email address, which you have with this blog post, and get in touch. I’d dearly love to connect.

    Warmest regards,

    Jerilyn

  20. Brandy M. says:

    Hi Sweets! Thanks so much for mentioning me on your blog & I see that Jeri saw it, too. YAY! I know the book was a project very close and meaningful to her heart since Lily’s Dad was deployed at the time. I love it, and my cousin’s tiny son benefitted from it (I sent him a copy) when his Mommy, my little cousin, was deployed last year!!!

    I like both the blocks. It looks like there were some set-in seams in the 2nd block, and maybe not with the first block? I think they both look wonderful and I’d probably use whatever was the easiest.

    I love that Grandma & Grandpa got a blueberry bush! Anne’s so lucky to have family that love & support her so much! (and a great Mommy, too!)

    Love & hugs!!

  21. Mhairi says:

    Considering blueberries are $8 a punnet here and my children love them more than chocolate I think that a blueberry bush sounds like a great plant to have. Hopefully all those antioxidants help with the sleep situation. (Not sure if antioxidants make any difference to sleep but I do know that blueberries have loads in them so here’s hoping!!)
    Love your quilt blocks too. They look great.

  22. ChrissieD says:

    Wow, how crisp and clean looking are these blocks. For me they’d look fab as a whole quilt in a lime washed beach house for snuggling and looking over the beach to the ocean. Maybe I just need a good holiday? :)

  23. Pingback: Who Can You Tell? | Jerilyn Marler, Quincy Companion Books & Lily Loves Hellos Blog

  24. CeLynn says:

    Wow,lovein those blocks ::) We have 3 Blueberry plants in the garden,but they look kind of scraggly compared to the beauty you have!

  25. Sharon says:

    Feathered star are my favorite! I love the marti michell templates, did you try them?

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