EPP on the go

Surprise Success and Stitching on the Road

I began writing this post this past Sunday, but then caught the cold/fever/cough my kids have been kicking.  So instead of finishing this post, sewing, or blogging, I’ve been sleeping. Lots and lots of sleeping. And of course, making the most of the days with as much energy as I can muster. So pretend it is four days ago, and read on! The best laid plans, right?

Over the past two days, I’ve been driving from Maine to New Jersey with my three kiddos to surprise my mom (Grandma) for her birthday. I’m happy to report that the surprise was a complete success! My sister and brother who live in the area were planning on going to my parents’ house to cook dinner for her birthday, so the kids and I arrived at my sister’s house earlier in the day, then we all met up at the far end of the street before dinner, where I parked. My sister and brother walked in and Lucy said, “I invited a few more people over for your birthday; I hope that’s ok” and then Maddie and Max followed by Finn and I walked in. My mom says it was the best birthday surprise ever. Yay!

grandma's birthday surprise
Who doesn’t love little helpers when it comes to blowing out birthday candles?

Since we will be visiting here for five days before beginning the trek back up to Maine, I packed a good number of hand sewing projects so that my hands (and sewing mind) can be kept busy during the week. I contemplated bringing my sewing machine, but since the entire point of this trip is to spend family time together, I didn’t want to feel at all tempted to duck off to sew in a separate room while here. Hand stitching projects are a solution since they can be pulled out anytime, anywhere, and still ensure that I won’t be left with any thumb twiddling with all of the extra eager playmates for my kids.

I thought it would be fun give you a peek at the variety of projects I brought to satiate my need to create daily.

English Paper Piecing (EPP) at various stages of completion
EPP on the go
Basting. I still haven’t decided whether I like glue basting or thread basting best, so I’m doing both.
EPP on the go
Glue basted and ready to be stitched down.
Needle-turn applique
needle turn applique project ready to go
A new needle-turn applique project ready to go.
Embroidery & Hand Quilting
Embroidery on a mini mini quilt
aurifil 12 wt thread for embroidery
I brought a collection of Aurifil 12wt thread for embroidery and a range of 12wt, 40wt, and 50wt for eventual hand-quilting.
Visible mending supplies.. just in case
visible mending supplies
Old cut-up jeans and perle cotton just in case my mom actually wants me to patch her jeans for her.

I’m linking up with Freshly Pieced’s WiP Wednesday, since it’s already Wednesday and these are still very much works in progress. C’est la vie! Good night!

12 thoughts on “Surprise Success and Stitching on the Road”

  1. What a fun surprise and loved your Mandy quilt intro. Do you know that I bought her book after hearing great things, commented to her on IG and then FOUND OUT SHE WAS THE “COUSIN WHO QUILTED” THAT ONE OF MY NURSE FRIENDS HAS BEEN NAGGING ME ABOUT. Such a fun connection and love our little quilt world.


  2. What a great surprise, but hope you feel better soon! Does your mom live in your (and my) old hometown? I would say to give a fond hello to the Recird Bar, but I suspect it’s long been replaced… by a Starbucks, no doubt!


  3. A few years ago, when I went home to visit my parents, one of my best friends came up from North Carolina to visit. It was such a surprise and shock to me, when out of the other side of the door popped out my other best friend that she had brought with her from Texas! We were like the three amigos, and I thought that I would be able to see my second friend that trip since she lived so far away. You can only imagine the tears that came! I even get a little teary-eyed just thinking about it now. It was the best surprise, and I’m sure your mom was over the moon and back thrilled to see you and the kiddos. I hope you are having (have had?) a great time. Sometimes it’s good to have a little reigns-pulled sewing, because once you do finally make it back into the sewing room, the ideas will come like a downpour.

    Gute Besserung!


  4. Lucky Mom to have such a great jean mender in the family! Now I see why moms (including my own) teach their kids to sew. I’m in Maine and they’re in CA and FL, so I guess it’s too late to teach my 39 yo son and my 37 yo daughter to sew my jeans, but they can do hems and buttons in a pinch. Hope all of you are on the mend (Ahem!).


  5. Ohhh, what fun! Birthday surprises are always fun, whether you’re giving the surprise or receiving it! šŸ™‚ What is the background fabric for the project with the rabbit on it? It’s sharp looking with that project; you always have an eye for awesome fabric combinations. Hope you’re feeling better!


  6. What a lovely surprise to have you all there, I’m sure she was thrilled to the core to see you all (especially little Finn!) Thanks for the EPP photos, I designed this beautiful piece a while back but couldn’t figure out how to translate it to a paper piece pattern so I’ve thought of making it an EPP design but I’m spending too much time second guessing myself. Every time you post EPP photos you are gently reminding me to get my stuff together on that!


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