Bits 'N Pieces

Linda Bllard and Company

Hi Everyone,                                        March 2024
Today is a gloomy day, buy sitting inside working on the fall Let’s Quilt Retreats gives me a smile 
and I hope once you see the newsletter and retreat schedule , it too will put a smile on your face. 
This schedule will run from September to November, with hopes there’s at least one that will 
entice you.

For the past 6 months or so I’ve been busy traveling and teaching and creating new quilt patterns.
I’ve been at my mainstay quilt shops to teach for them (Blue Iris, Fiends Around the Block, Honey 
Run Quil- ters, Sew Simple, Swifty Stitches and The Sewing Room. Just this past October, I’ve added 
a new quilt shop, it’s Sew Katie Jean in Lincoln and what a nice shop and great owner/assistant. 
I’m always looking for new quilt shops to teach at as they are very dear to me being that I once 
was a quilt shop owner. People ..... we need to support these businesses .... internet is good but you can’t touch and feel the fabrics!
Some of my other venues for teaching have been my yearly teaching for group retreats. This is always 
a treat for me to come and present for these quilters. I get to ‘play’ with the Material Girls of 
Shady Cove, OR .... Fresno Retreats twice a year (see you before too long) .... Teri’s group twice 
a year at Harmony Ridge (soooo much fun) Island Park Quilters in Idaho (it’s around the corner, woohoo, Moonlight Quilters 
in July (can’t wait!) .... and of course Rendezvous in Reno in September. All of these events are 
always a hoot ... the people, location, great energy, food, fellowship, etc., what can I say, I’m really lucky. Of course 
I will always find room to work new groups in, just need to be asked.

Whats happening right now? I’m getting quilts ready for the cruise this coming August 17-25. There 
are still openings if you wish to join us. We are doing the Western Caribbean on RCL’s Harmony of 
the Seas. We have 4 days of sea time, that means we can sew up a storm, oh yea! We have a dedicated 
room just for us which means we can sew pretty much anytime we wish, yes even on shore days. This 
is my 16th quilting cruise and would love to have you join in. Contact me if you’re interested. 
What cruise is next? Working on Europe for 2025 with a big BUT ..... I only will do conference 
rooms for the sewing and it’s getting harder and harder to find those ships.
Would love to use another cruise line other than RCL but .... no conference room not interested.
My travel agent and I keep looking, hopefully cruise 17 will happen.

Look at my website on the calendar to see where all I’m traveling to. I’ve been to SoCal numerous 
times these past months and still have a couple more guilds I’ll be seeing shortly. Off to Crescent 
City to be with that guild, can hardly wait! Will be going to a new area for me where a small group 
of ladies want me, I can hardly wait to share what I know with them. The calendar pretty much will 
tell you where I am and what I’m doing ..... find me and say hi. 

Speaking of my website .... there is no ‘store’ any longer but I do sell lots of products. I have 
my ‘project bags’ in 4 sizes available. They are super, you can stack them and they won’t slide and 
they’re very durable. Tools for quilting .... can't say I have it all but I have what I ask for in my 
classes. I use the Thirtysomething Square Up Ruler a lot in my quilts, they are no longer 
produced but I did buy all her inventory before she closed her business. So if you need this ruler, 
call me, I can take care of you.

Family update -

Dave ...Right now he is working on the 2 new quilts for the cruise with 2 more in
the wings. I have to keep him motivated because if he ever retires, you’ll not ever have the same 
quality of workbooks that you’re used to (pencil drawings and cut and paste by me). So, I try to be 
gracious and do what I can to make him want to keep working on them. He’s a good guy.

Jim and family .... So here’s a tidbit for you. Our son has always been Jim to us unless he’s in trouble and out comes James.
As he’s become an adult and went off to college, his friends always called him James. Consequently, 
James has stuck with him except for us .... he’s always Jim. We get no eye-rolling or corrections 
from him thank goodness know, it is what it is. He still loves us!! The grandkids are super. Blake turns 18 this summer 
and will be a senior in the fall. Elle will be 13 this summer. Both kids are big into Lacrosse and 
mountain bike riding. Both are on bike teams and they love it. Courtney is busy with the various 
organizations she’s involved in while running the house and keeping track of everyones schedule. 
Their lives are typical ..... busy all the time, loving what they do.

Cheri .... she’s my girl, an independent soul but always knows dad and I 
are there for her. She has her job of over 20 years at the hotel, her friends and all of her 4 legged kids. 
She’s a very happy person and she always makes me smile. I so love this one.

For myself .... I’m staying busy which is what I love. I’ve had a chance to take time off and be with my
friends sewing here and there. That always rejuvenates me. Other than getting some new patterns
designed/made/produced by Dave, I’ve been dealing with several health issues.
I’ve been working on getting my stress fracture on the right ankle healthy, starting PT as I’m writing this.
The fracture has healed, now just getting the ankle to not ‘smart’ when I move it a certain way.
Also, my eyes ..... DMV has said I am no longer able to drive and has revoked my license.
I am not going down without a fight! I can’t tell you how unhappy this makes me, I feel 
I’ve lost my freedom. Can’t jump into the van and go here or there ..... can’t help do errands, 
etc. Thank goodness for Dave, he’s my chauffeur and he’s always willing to drive me where ever I 
need to go. I know I’m so lucky to have him do this, but I feel bad because he’s a ‘home body’ and 
now he’s having to be on my schedule. He says he’s ok to do this and I’m so grateful. Many of my 
quilting friends are stepping in when they can but it’s not like I live close to many of them. 
Still an adjustment. I will tell you, I’ve had several ‘pity parties’ for myself .... think
I’m ok to have them. I’ve challenged the DMV once, I know what it takes to get it back, it’s now 
convincing the eye doctors .... so far I’m striking out. BUT ..... don’t think I’m not going to continue what 
I do ..... I told Dave we’re going to toughen up his rear with all the driving he has to do (lol). Keep good thoughts 
for me please, don’t want it to get any worse. I think the later part of 2023 kind of sucked!

I’ve rambled on more than intended, sorry.  Please read over the retreats listed, check out the 
dates and see if there isn’t some you’d like to attend. I work hard to make the retreats a fun and 
happy place, giving you a great quilt (or you can always work on your own project), wonderful 
fellowship and some great food and stories. You as the attendees have many retreats now to choose 
from, seems like everyone is doing them now from quilt shops/guilds/private individuals, so when I 
get to have you at mine, I feel so honored and blessed. Thank you always for supporting me, it 
makes me happy you appreciate what I do,

Janette at Avante Travel is who to talk to regarding the cruise in August. Her number is 

PS .... Weaverville in the fall is being held at a different location and I’m suggesting the 49er 
Motel for lodging if needed. Only a small number can be accommodated.