It goes like this ... you hold the end of the thread against the needle and then wrap it (from the non-end) around the needle 5 times. Then you slide the whole thing down the needle and down all the thread, to the end, where you'll have a beautiful knot ready for hand stitching. There's a YouTube video if you search "knotting thread needle".
2. When you're burying quilting thread ends, you can pull up any threads left on the bottom so that you're doing all the burying on the top. If you're bringing up your bobbin thread at the start on a quilt line, you may just have threads on the bottom where you ended a line. Just pull on the top thread and watch for a hint of the bottom one, poke it with a pin and pull it up. Bam.
3. When you're burying those ends, you can do more than one at a time when they're right next to each other.
4. When you're quilting, you don't need to alternate direction on parallel lines unless you like the slight herringbone look.
And here's the front of this 29x37 inch stroller quilt - my second quilt. :-D
I hope the wee baby likes it when he's born.