Quilt blocks and a new blog feature

These are my last few quilt blocks for the '09 block swap. I will not being doing the swap next year so these might be my last individual blocks for a while. Joining the club was such a great thing for a newbie. It really helped me increase my stash and learn to make a ton of different patterns. At this point though, I have enough of my own projects going, I don't really have time for the swap anymore.
This is for July, Spring showers brings May flowers, in blues and purples, any pattern.
This is the most difficult block I have pieced to date, but I really enjoyed the challenge.
This was for August, a butterfly design in bright colors on a sky background. This was super hard for me because there were no clear patterns available for this butterfly. All options required some form of applique. That is a type of sewing where one cuts a shape and goes around the edge ironing a 1/4 inch or less of fabric under. Then you sew it on, patch style, but it requires an exacting stitch for a attractive finished product. I have not done any applique yet so I just cut out the body of the butterfly and sent it along, for the recipient to attach.
This is October. Blue, green and tan with this Weathervane pattern on a white background. It was one of my favorite blocks of the year. I love the blue and green colors and the sharp pattern. I hope to do a whole quilt of this pattern at some point.
So, this was for November, blue with shimmering gold, any pattern. This was for December, all beige with no discernible motifs, any pattern. I think this theme was a great one to do for a swap. I have learned that with a swap, the more simple the colors and the more open you are about pattern, the better the results are. I think people will do a better job for you if you give them the freedom to choose a pattern they feel comfortable with. I think this quilt will turn out surprisingly interesting, with such a myriad of beige's available.
I also wanted to let you know that I have added a new feature to the blog. On the upper left hand of the screen I am going to be posting links occasionally. I am always coming across a good recipe, funny video, interesting blog that I would like to share but which don't warrant a whole post about. I am not going to pressure myself to add a certain number a week, just whenever something catches my eye. Hope you enjoy it!!