Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
And that's it as far as my shopping. We don't have a large gift list, and most of the younger people want gift cards or cash, so our shopping isn't real stressful. But I miss the shopping in a way. We'd go out in the evening, have a nice dinner, and then shop the mall. But I REALLY miss the days when shopping meant you were OUTSIDE, on the streets...going from store to store. You'd pass friends on the sidewalk, everyone bundled up against the crisp, cold night air, and you'd duck into a store just to warm up and find the most wonderful gift. Sadly those days are a thing of the past.
I'd like to have a quilt hanger for Christmas. Maybe two. That's about it. I'd ask for quilt fabric or books, but I have an amazing amount of them already, and truth be told....last night I was cleaning off my sewing room table and found the stack of receipts for my fabric ordering, and in glancing through them I found one for a kit I had totally forgotten I had! It's a beautiful applique pattern called "Tea Rose Garden"...and I haven't the foggiest idea where it is. I searched for about 15 minutes last night and didn't find it. Keep in mind that I have lots of plastic tubs with different fabric collections or kits in each one....all nicely labeled...and I didn't come across this particular one. So today that is my goal...find Tea Rose Garden! And then put my Winter White schnibble together. And start a wall hanging for my friend in SC. Can I get it done by Christmas? Hope so! LOL!
Oh, and I accepted Nicole's challenge to finish something I'd started and quit...known as a UFO in the quilting world, so that means I need to get back to working on that baby quilt. Baby is due next week, I think.
So, that's my day. How's yours going?
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
So now we're faced with a lot of time off....but no money to allow us to do anything fun or creative. He'll receive a decent unemployment that should cover all our monthy expenses except food, and we've put money away all year in preparation. It'll be okay. But it won't be fun.
I've got lots of fabric for quilt sewing...beautiful stuff, and lots of patterns to choose from. Books from the library are free. Rides to the beach, or into the forests that surround us, don't cost much in gas. Michael has a whole month of hunting season that he can enjoy. And a boat for fishing. Maybe I can get him to spread some of that red rock around the flower beds, and paint a wall or two....and make some baseboards. Or put up the ceiling tile in my sewing room, and paint or wallpaper the walls.
Lots of projects.....lots of time. Maybe it'll be more fun than I thought!
Monday, September 28, 2009
Saturday, September 26, 2009
I have been busy quilting. And reading. It's a wonder my eyes can focus this morning. Yesterday afternoon I made 76---count 'em---76 flying geese units. Made and squared up. The rest of the schnibble challenge should go together quickly...which is the whole point about schnibbles. The finished product will be about 38" square, I believe, so I'm thinking it will make a table topper...or hang on some small wall space.
Sat up til 11:30 to finish "The Castaways." It was okay....I just wanted to be done with it and on to "The Lacemakers of Glenmara."
Michael working again this weekend. Don't get me wrong, I'm thankful he's getting in some overtime. But since next weekend is the Ocean Shores quilt show, I'm hoping he'll be around....or it will be a hasty trip after church Sunday.
Speaking of church....we're thinking of finding a new one. Last weekend we attended a different one, and really liked the service. Which is our main complaint about our current church. Is that enough to make you seek out a new church? Just because you don't like the way the preacher .... preaches? We love the people...we've been there 11 years. I am their sec/treasurer. Michael is an usher. We fit in, we're so comfortable there, I enjoy my work there and feel the Lord is using me...but spiritually, something is lacking. If you find yourself planning your grocery list during the middle of the sermon, isn't something wrong? Is it with ME? Hmmmm. So we're going to look around...visit a few churches and test the waters. I gave a heads up to our deacon board chair, told him that we were looking, and told him why. I think he was stunned...leaving without saying a whole lot. But when I saw him yesterday, I got the whole spiel of how they don't want to lose me (of course they don't....they'd have to find a whole new person to do what I do...for free). He was stressed....depressed...and said he'd have a talk with the pastor on Monday, not wanting to get him riled up before he had to preach on Sunday. I know the pastor....he will not take kindly to criticism. And why should he be asked to change his methods on my account? The congregation is actually growing...strange to me, but true. I guess we all want different things...and so shouldn't we go seeking what we need? I'm praying about it, of course.
Time for shower...breakfast...and sewing on that schnibble. Have a great day!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Expecting Sue, my UPS buddy, to be stopping in today with a bundle of fabric from the Fat Quarter Shop. Aster Manor, Mill House Inn, and Rouenneries...some of the delights I can't wait to get my hands on. Tho I'll probably do nothing more than pet them at this point. Fabric so beautiful demands the perfect setting, and so I'll be looking through my patterns to find just the right one.
I've got some Gobble Gobble put away, and should probably be thinking of a quick fall project for that. And of course, it's time to whip up something new for the Christmas holidays...a wall hanging, table runner, something quick.
In two weeks there is a quilt show at the Ocean Shores Convention Center. Lots of lovely quilts will be hanging for display...those by Cleo Merrill are always a favorite. The woman has such an eye for color, and she hand quilts everything, which of course is a trait I admire...and practice myself. I wonder if she has issues with arthritis like I do? I sometimes wonder how much longer I will be able to do that.
Besides beautiful quilts to admire, there are vendors of quilting tools, sewing machines, and fabric. My favorite is the Quilter's Roost, a shop out of Everett. Jodi Grenzner speaks my language, and I love shopping her booth. Owners of shops tend to stock what they love best, and I can always find something (many somethings!) I love at Jodi's. I've shopped online with her for several years, and it's been fun to get to know her in person at this annual event.
It's also a day for lunch out with my hubby, who enjoys this event as much as I do.
Monday, September 21, 2009
The furnace was running when I got up this morning, and soon it will be the time of a constant fire in the fireplace...the scent of wood smoke in the air, dust all over everything, and lots of little critters running around that come in with the wood. Yes, it has it's drawbacks, but it's lovely heat....and it smells so good!
I've got lots of books requested from the library, and now that I have finished with Farm Town on Face Book, I actually am taking the time to get some reading done. (How sad that a silly, addictive game could take up so much of one's time. And while you expect that of kids, perhaps, it's REALLY sad that a woman of my age would get hooked on something like that. Believe me, it was more of a chore at the end, but coupled with a determination to get to the finish. Which I did.)
Anyway, I have just finished reading "The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society." What a fun, interesting, and educational read that was. The book takes place in England (Guernsey on the Channel Islands, to be exact) the year after WWII ends, and the story is told entirely in letters. It was fascinating to learn about life under German occupation as told through the eyes of the villagers, but there is much humor and a good story-line also. And of course there is that beautiful English language...so poetic...so genteel...it's a real shame we don't talk like that any more. I heartily recommend the book.
I've got lots of quilt projects going, and lots of new fabrics on the way. I'm doing a wonderful BOM (Block-of-the-month) in Glace' fabric, and have also joined in "A Year of Schnibbles"....one project a month using a Schnibble pattern from Miss Rosie's Quilt Co. What's a schnibble? Technically a scrap of fabric...and these are small projects. Do-able in a weekend, I suppose, if one is dedicated. I also have the black, red, and white quilt to finish...border to put on, and then layer for quilting.
TWICE I have begun and then rejected a quilt I'm making (or not making, as the case may be) for the newest addition to the family. I don't understand it. I'm not sure why this project has been fighting me, and when I figure it out, I will begin again. Maybe.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
On the other hand, the black, white, and red blocks are almost done. Singly, I love them. I told my niece the other day that if I didn't like them put together in the quilt top, Travis and Erica would be getting 31 potholders from me!! I think it will work, and I think they'll appreciate something that's a little outside the box.
I've got two books waiting for me at the library....the latest John Sandford, and "Water for Elephants." My niece recommended this one. We'll see....doesn't SOUND like my cup of tea, but I'm prepared to be delightfully surprised. She says it's one of her favorite books.
So.....lots of choices on what to do with this bright sunny day. Enjoy, everyone!
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Monday, June 1, 2009
I survived that horrible March month, and my health has actually been getting better and better in the last few months. I am going to credit God for this, and all the prayers that I know are being offered on my behalf. I've really been able to eat a lot of things that I shouldn't, and that's made me happy. It's hard to not eat tomatoes and onions, but lately I've been able to. I've drunk beer...eaten chocolate....salad dressings. I'm a happy camper these days. Thank you, Lord!
So, what have I been up to. Reading. Lots of books in the last few months. Autobiographies, fiction. And I've been quilting a lot lately. Just finished the top to a baby quilt I'm making for the new Caalim baby. I hope it's a girl....I think this quilt may be a bit too feminine for a boy, inspite of the "neutral" colors. We'll see. It's colorful, I'll give it that. I hope Baby will enjoy it.
I've also started a quilt for a newly engaged couple in our family. My nephew and his fiance' are getting married next May, and when I asked them for colors for a quilt, they asked for red, black, and white...with a Spanish theme (because that is Erica's heritage). I found some wonderful black and white fabrics, and a red to tie them together. Spanish? Well.....the designs on the black and white are very scroll-like...maybe even lacy....which makes ME think of a Spanish mantilla and their architecture. Hey....that's the best I can do! I think it's going to be stunning if I do my job right.
Memorial Day we went up to the Lake Quinault Lodge in the rain forest, and hung out. We've been doing that every year now for the past 4-5 years. It was another beautiful weekend weather-wise, and we totally enjoyed it. Relaxed, saw all the sights, hiked a bit, went down to Ruby Beach, and ate way too much. The restaurant had a beef tenderloin with gorgonzola cream sauce that was soooo good, I ate it two nights in a row!! They also had a wonderful po'boy made with marinated shrimp, served on top of slaw with a roasted red pepper sauce. It made for the best sandwich ever! And no, it didn't bother me. We've decided to make the trip up there more often....like after church...just for lunch.
We put in a new lawn in the last few months. Well, Michael did. He put on moss killer, thatched, and plug-aerated. He put on weed and feed, and new grass seed, and watered the heck out of it, because the weather decided to get drier just when we needed it wet. Figures. So, we now have a green lawn, don't see any moss, but the weed and feed did NOTHING to kill the weeds. He'll be applying weed killer this week.
I planted geraniums last night. And some solomon's seal. That's sure a pretty plant. I got it at the garden show....haven't seen it at any of the local stores, like Home Depot or Wal-Mart. Perhaps I should expand my horizons as I'd like to plant more of it.
No one has come and weeded any of the other areas on this place. Yuck. It's a mess. It's always a mess. But I try to keep my little plots weeded.
This weekend we are headed to the winery and Westport with a couple of sisters and their spouses. Will be a fun day. Hoping that this glorious weather holds.
I have been spending a lot of time on Facebook....which hasn't helped my posting here any. While I don't post a lot on there, it's fun to see what the family is doing, especially with those I don't see often. And there are some fun games.
AND....I have a farm. My niece, Becky, got me into farming. I tell you, it is addictive. It sounds crazy, but it's really a lot of fun. I keep after my sisters to start one so we can be "neighbors"....but they are resisting. It can be a real time sink, but I thoroughly enjoy it.
If you aren't already reading http://thepioneerwoman.com then you really need to check it out. Ree is a HOOT, and a wonderful cook. She lives on a large cattle ranch in Oklahoma with her husband, Marlboro Man, and their 4 kids. She will bring a smile to your face, and make you want to head for the kitchen to cook up one of her recipes. She has fabulous give-aways every week....from Kitchenaid mixers, to sugar lemon body lotion. She has a huge readership, and I've yet to win anything, but I won't give up trying. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment. Give her a look....you won't be disappointed.
And that's it for now. I'm headed back upstairs to cut more black and white fabric. Yes, I know the sun is shining, and it's a beautiful day outside........but first things first.
Monday, April 6, 2009
Needless to say, I was distraught. Crying. Depressed. Thinking that if this was how the rest of my life was going to be, I would just as soon have it over with. Going out to dinner was a weekly enjoyment....and now it is becoming an impossibility. Cooking has become a chore instead of a pleasure, as my favorite spices aren't allowed, no tomato products, no onions....no JOHNNY'S SEASONING and EVERYTHING needs to be prepared from scratch. Can't handle those preservatives and ascorbic acid that are in almost all foods. I don't remember when I last had chocolate.....or coffee....or spaghetti...or an orange....
Working at my desk, sewing, even riding in a car....all cause pelvic pain. If I exercised, I'd have to give it up (grin)....other than some slow walking or yoga. Sretching is good. I am going to get back on my pilates machine and slowly see if I can get back to doing that.
While I was in the midst of the worst week ever in early March, I got a notice from the courts that I was selected for jury duty for April. I groaned at the mere thought of having to do something like that. It just wasn't possible. Fortunately my urologist agreed with me and sent a letter to the court excusing me permanently from jury service. Permanently. Permanently, because this disease, this condition, is not going to go away. So while I was very pleased that jury duty was not going to be a part of my future, it also put a stamp on the rest of my life.....INVALID.
Want to go out to dinner this Saturday? I don't think so. Hey, want to take a week and drive to Montana? Right. How about going out to the winery and watching them bottle this weekend? Afraid I can't. Going to stay for potluck today? Um, no. I could go on and on, but you get the idea.
Okay...March is over, and it's now April, and I'm doing better. I'm not sure what set off the downward spiral last month, but I'm trying real hard to avoid a recurrence. I've resigned myself to the food issues, but am struggling with the other things that are causing discomfort. I try to spread my church work over the week so that I'm not there for long periods of time. I may have to take up applique quilting instead of pieced so there's less time at the machine. Still haven't figured out how to handle a road trip, but I'm working on it.
This is all new to me. I'm learning as I go. I apologize for sounding grumpy, and I hope you'll bear with me when I have to say "No" to the simplest requests. I'm working on keeping a good attitude, and trying to be positive, but some days, it's just not gonna happen.
Friday, March 6, 2009
I think we've hit every store in town, and one in Olympia, but haven't had a whole lot of success. I'm not a fan of big, overstuffed sofas and chairs, and that is what we're seeing. And the fabrics are cheap and shabby. Of course, this is not a town of high-end stores, so we will probably have to change where we're looking. Still, it is depressing to see the kind of stuff that is on the market today. I suppose they are relatively cheap in price for what you get....some were as low as $700. We got our present sofa for $2,200.....half price....and have enjoyed it a long time.
We've thought about leather, but it's never really been on our radar. It's cold....and don't you stick to it when you're bare legged? I spent a night on a leather couch once, and never got warm because it just didn't "warm up." So I've not considered it in the past, tho we might now. (Maybe it would be just the thing to sleep on on those hot summer nights......)
Hubby suggested we get the old sofa reupholstered. That might be a plan. It's sooooo comfortable, and the perfect size. I just can't imagine how long it would take to get it back, and we'd have very limited seating while we waited. Still....it might be an idea. I wonder if they have loaner sofas while you wait?
Monday, March 2, 2009
I hesitated about reading this work of fiction. The subject matter deals with a fifty-one year old woman with early onset Alzheimers. Since my father died with some form of dementia... Mom says it was Alzheimers....and his niece has suffered many years with it, I'm afraid it's in my gene pool, and so reading about someone with this condition was not going to help my outlook any.
But the book blew me away. It's told from Alice's perspective. She is a professor of languages at Harvard....bright, intelligent, active, exercises faithfully, eats well, good family life and an adoring husband...all the things we would hope would stave off this dreaded disease. But it just ain't so. Alice's life falls apart fast, even with the meds she takes, even with planning so carefully for what she knows is going to happen to her...and then forgetting her plans.
Alice's three children are given the option of testing to see if they carry the gene. One declines, two are tested. Of course that had me wondering what I would do. I didn't have to hesitate long. I would not do it. Have not done it. I don't think I'd want to live with the knowledge that my life and memories were going to be taken away from me in such a horrific way. But even without the testing, I know the possibility is real, and I have to stop myself from worrying about it.
This brilliantly written book, by author Lisa Genova, was beautiful, heartbreaking and terrifying at the same time. It contained no hope. I couldn't put it down. And I cried through most of it. It gives such insight into what it must be like to have Alzheimers, that I consider this a "must-read" for everyone.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
I am working on a new quilt. And I'm going to be making quilt tops for a quilt shop in Everett (http://www.quiltersroost.com/). Jodi will back, bind and quilt them, and send them off to an orphanage in Honduras. Right now I'm in the stage of wondering what fabrics I have that might appeal to children. I'm afraid there's not much in that category....my stash is not permeated with bright happy colors. But, I'll come up with something.
And before I forget.......I WON A PRIZE FROM ONE OF MY FAVORITE WEBSITES. Heather Mulder-Peterson from Anka's Treasures http://ankastreasures.wordpress.com/) had a give-away contest and I am one of the two winners. She will be sending me a quilt kit from her newest fabric line, Cottage Charms, AND her newest book, Living Large (patterns requiring fabric with large prints). I am SO EXCITED. I hope it will show up this week. Hurry, Heather!!
If you're a fan of the Food Network, I highly recommend their magazine, aptly named "The Food Network Magazine." There are lots of great recipes and articles. I received my second issue yesterday, and pouring through it is one of my indulgences for today.
The 24th is the scheduled date for the play-planning meeting and buffet dinner at Dick and Jeanie's. Yep, we're starting to plan already. Jeanie is busy adding to the script, and I hear she will have us dancing in the aisles. Michael is more sure than ever that he DOES NOT want to be in this play. I think we can talk him into being the stable master tho. Maybe. Not.
Valentine's Day is coming up, and we have reservations at the Westport Winery for their "A Special Evening, A Special Setting, A Special Someone" dinner. Five courses with a wine pairing for each one, take-home chocolate truffles and a rose, for $90 a couple. Now how can you beat that? I don't think we've ever gone out for Valentine's Day....maybe for a burger at the Crow's Nest so I wouldn't have to cook. But this year VD is on a Saturday....and the deal is way too good to pass up. I'm hoping that they aren't serving full glasses of wine, cuz we're both not up to drinking 5 glasses and then driving home. I'm not even supposed to be drinking wine (with my bladder issues), but if I take all the precautionary meds I can get away with SOME.
The winery has been coming up with all sorts of events since they opened. They are fast becoming the main source of entertainment in this sorry little town. I think next weekend is a scrap booking party...with wine tastings, of course. And they have all sorts of cooking "classes"...where you watch and get to eat the food. There's a big bridal fair next month. And they even have grape stompings...you TOO can be like Lucy.
Stomach growling....must be time for breakfast......