Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Lily on the Mat with Diamonds

I'm trying to get back to normal, but I still miss my sweet Pokey so much. Writing in my blog makes me think of her, so it's hard to do.

Working again on a string diamond project inspired by one in Gwen Marston's Liberated Strings book. I dragged my machine up into the kitchen (rather than using my still horrendously unorganized but wonderfully lit new studio down in the basement) so I felt a part of things rather than apart.


Lily worked on the quilt with me, of course.


I'm using the EZ Rulers 60 degree diamond. Love it. (Thanks for letting me keep it, Kathy!)


the classic "holding down the blocks so they don't get away" technique:


Kitchen islands (and counters) really are a fabulous place to set up a cutting station. So stable and just the right height. I'd be able to iron too if Lily would just move...


I was caught horribly off guard when I downloaded my new photos to the computer. I didn't know I'd find darling Pokey.


So frail and underweight, but still my baby. She'd just come back from the hospital so her leg was bandaged in bright pink.

I miss her so much. dammit dammit dammit.

That's why working on the diamonds is a good project for me. Stringing onto paper is soothing for me. The decisions are small and I know exactly how each piece fits. And I'm working with some of the fabrics that ya'll have gifted me over the years so those are good thoughts. I miss my blogging community even as I find it hard to participate.

Everything will be okay. just not yet.

62 comments:

Victoria Findlay Wolfe said...

diamond LOVE... LOVE!!!

Kristin L said...

Hang in there. :-) it's wonderful for us too see you here, even if it's just a little bit.

Michele said...

Looks so cool. Love fabric weight.

Saska said...

love the diamonds...it'll keep your mind busy too. Keep after it!

Kristin said...

I'm so sorry that's so hard for you. Pokey looks like such a sweet little waif there. Your quilt is amazing though and it looks like Lily is very good company. Hugs to you Tonya!

deborah said...

I know how much you miss your Pokey, Miss Lily is doing her best to console you.
Very very clever name for a spectacular string quilt!
Big Hugs!!

Heidi said...

Glad to see you back !
Sewing therapy is good !

Vesuviusmama said...

Here's hoping that the string piecing eases the pain in your heart just a bit. Sorry to hear about Pokey.

Nifty Quilts said...

Oh, so glad you can sew through these tears. Your quilt is fantastic.

stitchinpenny said...

It is a great quilt. I know seeing Pokey was tough, but she was still a beautiful baby and the love you felt was an important part of your life.

Marj said...

I hope that the strings and Lily's company help you to ease back into blogland. It will never be the same, but most of us out here understand what you are going through.
Hugs from me and my kitties.

Kathie said...

Hoping things get better for you I can only imagine how hard this as been for you. He was a constant companion thru your moves and your health issues and remember all the fun times , joy he brought to you in making of so many of your quilts. In turn you gave him the best home and so much love. Your love for him showed thru all the pictures you posted of him thru the years. He could not ask for anything. Else.

Sharon said...

Love your project, were your ears burning last week? I took a 2 day workshop with Gwen, oh how I enjoyed the time with her. I asked her about strings, as I cannot find her book anywhere. Started some of my own on the weekend. Great project to "work out" things.
Take care of yourself!

alittlebitcrafty said...

It will get better...hasn't been enough time yet and I love your new project. It's on my list!

tubilinha tiacarminha said...

Lindo seu trabalho.Parabéns pelo prêmio.

Quiltdivajulie said...

Just the fact that you posted is more than enough for now.

The diamonds are marvelous!! Totally understand the "soothing" comment - sometimes I really need the hum of the machine!

Sujata Shah said...

Good to see you sewing again! Love the strings!

julieQ said...

No need to answer, just know that I am sending hugs and prayers across the miles to you.

Kim said...

Ahhhhhhh Tonya I'm so sorry.
Wish we could do something to lift the pain.
Sewing your way through it is just what I would do too.

Big Hugs and Happy sewing

Sharon said...

Sewing can be the best therapy. Glad to see that you're working on strings - they ARE great therapy. The quilt is looking good!

I know and understand what you're going through. Just know that I'm thinking of you and sending you love. Hugs and purrs from me, Shade and Dunkel. It will get better.

KQ Sue said...

Diamonds look great! I feel your sorrow. I still miss Popcorn, Inky and Daisy; they went over Rainbow Bridge - 18, 8 and 4 years ago. {{HUG}}

Millie said...

Love this, and love the title!

cauchy09 said...

aw, hug Lily closer for a while longer.

those scrappy diamonds are amazing. keep going! keep going!

Lisa Shafer said...

It's good to see you making some progress. Keeping busy will help.
I always love your posts.

YankeeQuilter said...

Hang in there...welcome to the kitchen quilter club. Came to an agreement that I would take my sewing out of the dining room and living room but I still love that counter...

Frog Quilter said...

I've missed you!

Great string thing!!L

Robin C said...

I've read your blog for a few years and have always enjoyed your projects. I just want you to know that I understand. Been there hated it. But over time it does get easier. Hug Lily lots, she's sad too.

sewyouquilt2 said...

lovin the quilt and sending some hugs to you and Lily.we miss you and understand.
For years and years quilting has helped ladies work through sadness and I hope that it can comfort you in this most difficult of times.
thinking of you my friend........

Lynn said...

Glad to see you back, it takes time to mourn. The diamonds are terrific.

Marge said...

Another fun quilt. May it help your heart heal...

Kathy said...

Good to see that you are choosing sewing therapy. It helps and Lily helps, too. Love the diamonds. Looking forward to hearing more from you when you are ready. Hugs.

Quilter Kathy said...

So glad you are sewing...helps to keep us all from unravelling. Wonderful string blocks!

Michele Bilyeu said...

Precious Lily will help...slow but surely. I cried every day for two months over my little black magical cat, Keira who drowned in our neighbor's pool. I cried for three days looking for her and screamed like a banshee when they found her. When one of my pet chickens just died, Nyima wrote me from the Himalayas..you never know what goodness comes in and helps you feel better..even over a chicken!!!! You will get better and Pokey will always, always be a bittersweet pure love part of your heart..eventually more sweet than bitter and sharp pain. Keep really busy so you have something to always focus on. Love, loves to you and Lily on the Mat With Diamonds will sing you through all of it. Fate finally gave me a belated copy (free cycle!)of your feature in The Quilt Life and I loved it so much..especially that Alex has a touch of 'danger' to her now ;)Lots of hugs, Ton! Lots and lots. So many of us know and understand!

Leeann said...

Glad to have you back posting. And it's lovely to see Lily taking such good care of you too :-)

Helen said...

Diamonds are forever and so is LOVE.....

AnnieO said...

Mindless piecing is good, occupies the part of your brain that needs regular feeding to keep sane!

Love the photo of your dear darling girl. She was a special cat and I'm so glad you shared her with blogland so frequently.

JaneB said...

Now I have a Beatles tune stuck in my head & its all good. Those diamonds are great. Hang in there.

Clare said...

Great title and wonderful wonderful strings.

It will get better and Pokey will be with you forever. It's this time of year when I miss Magic the most. She used to love playing in the long grass just before they cut it for hay. Then after they'd cut and baled it there was the huge game of running up the bales and sitting there, knowing we couldn't reach her to get her down.

PrettyMade said...

Tonya, it's good to see you are back, at least somewhat. :) *energy hugs*
My husband, a cat lover if I ever met one, adores Lily and also the pics of Pokey I showed him.
He really understands how you feel, the pain and longing. He had to give away all three cats he had a few years back in a nasty separation, and later found out his ex had had them put down soon afterwards. :(

Anyway, I hope there's sunshine and happy quilting and lots of lovely memories for you! <3
Hugs and love from Nina

Lynda said...

Mindless sewing is great therapy for sad times. A couple of years ago I did a Bonnie Hunter mystery (lots of small pieces, as you well know!) which certainly helped me through some dark days. Hugs.

Rachaeldaisy said...

Sending you a super big bloggy buddy hug!! Your diamonds are fabulous!! It's lovely to see Lily helping you, its so annoying when all your blocks blow away!

Candace in CA said...

Tonya, is great to see you back, if only a little bit. I hope you know that many cyber hugs and good thoughts went your way at the news of Pokey's passing. I know that is hard, and she was always helping with your projects. She will always be in your heart.

I love what someone else said about Lily being sad too. It's true. You all lost part of your family. Go ahead and grieve and do what ever you need to find your new "normal."

Sorry, I didn't need to write a book, know that you are not alone, and we love to hear from you.
Hugs to all from: Candace and fur babies: Carrot, Victory and Soccer

Dotti said...

I"m so sorry you lost your sweet cat. Everytime you showed her on your blog, I would turn the computer toward my husband and say, "Look at this cat - just beautiful!" I truly feel for you. Hang in there!

smazoochie said...

Welcome back, I've missed you! Love the strings -- you & Sujata & Nifty are making me want to sew string-y diamonds!
I've always wondered if some of your cats are related? So many blue eyes. You photo of Pokey looks my final photos of Audrey, we did what we could.

Brenda said...

strings are ALWAYS good. what happened to your big string diamond star, that Victoria pieced the background for?

Lynne in Hawaii said...

Your blogging friends are there for you! Love the string diamonds!

Dawn Castro/wolfmom2ac said...

Sorry to hear about your kitty. I know what you are going through, I had a kitty who was 19 1/2 that had the same problem. That was 2 years ago and I still cry about my kitty. Just keep piecing your diamonds and remember the wonderful times you and your kitty had together.

Cheryl Arkison said...

I know exactly what you mean about the mindless piecing and the kitchen counter. Been thinking about you, take care.

Purple Pam said...

Glad you are sewing and posting again. So sorry about Pokey.

Tanya said...

I've been thinking about you for weeks and hoping you'd be back. Tears shed...

MulticoloredPieces said...

Hi, Tonya. So glad you managed to post--pets have a way of taking over our hearts. Your projects are always so interesting. The string diamonds are really distinctive--they'll make a gorgeous quilt.
best, nadia

LynneP said...

So sorry you are feeling so sad...it is hard to lose a friend!

The diamond string quilt is lovely!!!!

Mishka said...

Your diamonds are gorgeous... what a great idea. So sorry you lost your baby. :(

Annie Hollenbeck said...

Love the diamonds. Thinking of you as you go through this time.

Jane said...

It's good to see you back. You have been missed! We miss your Pokey, too. She had become a favorite at our house. Glad Lily is there to help with your quilt! Can't wait to see the end result of those gorgeous diamonds!
You always make such fun quilts...

daveandlo said...

The diamonds look great! Have you seen Bonnie's "lone star" with the orange backgrounds?

KateKwiltz said...

I've been away too long and missed the news about Pokey. I'm so sorry, Tonya -- they leave such a big hole when they go, and I'm not sure you can ever refill it completely. Hugs from me and Archie.

Lynda said...

Really missing your blog and all the scrappy inspiration (not to mention eye candy!) Thinking about you. x

Wendy Wiesen said...

Sorry about your sweet kitty Pokey, that is so hard. I have a sick kitty now too. I love the photos.

A tall redhead said...

nice to see you back. i have 3 cats and adore all of them. they really are family, aren't they?
i'm sorry to hear about pokey. she was a lucky girl to have you in her life.
the quilt is beautiful! enjoy sewing and take care of yourself.

Teresa said...

Hang in there...Pokey will always be in your heart, and her spirit in your projects. I love the diamond project! I've had some challenges lately, and I'm so glad that I have scraps and f****** fabulous new scissors (by Karen Kay Buckley) to cut them with. Fabric really is great therapy, isn't it?? Can't get enough of that calming activity.

In stitches,
Teresa :o)

electricdunce said...

I love the diamond strips, they really look so great..!