Monday, December 29, 2014

Meet Ryan!

I'd like to introduce you to Ryan Lennon Fines!  Born on Christmas Day, 2014 after an exciting and terrifying delivery!  Ryan has long gap esophageal atresia-which means that he has a gap in his esophagus so he cannot take feedings by mouth (more on that in a minute) this condition also creates excessive amounts of amniotic  fluid and usually results in premature delivery.  Poor Bri was just beyond misery at 34 weeks!  On Christmas day at 3:37 pm I got a text message "Bri's water Broke" the doctors had told them that should that happen they were to call an ambulance which they did.  Scott said it was a wild ride at 70mph down the highway with the sirens blaring!  Almost as soon as they arrived I got a text "emergency c-section" and Ryan was born at 4:47!  Momma hit every goal the doctors had--34 weeks gestation, he was born at 34 weeks and 1 day, and over 3 pds, he weighed 4.5 lbs--and watched her stomach go down as 30 pounds of fluid left her body!

I made a mad flight from Beth's house where we were eating dinner to my house, packed, got gas in the truck and drove to St Louis to arrive at St Louis Children's hospital at 10:30pm.  Even then Ryan was doing well, really red and on a little oxygen.  Mama was recovering and enjoying the fact that she could turn over in bed!

On Friday Ryan had a gastric tube inserted so he can be fed directly into his tiny tummy and he did really well with that as well.  Since he has long gap it will be some time before he has it corrected as they will wait for him to grow.  Scott said they will do a test next week to determine how long the gap is and that will give them more of a time line for the procedure.  He's tolerating breast milk via the feeding tube just fine and they increased his feedings from 2ml to 3ml yesterday.  Boy, a full tummy can sure make you sleepy! Also he hates all the tube and wires!  He pulled his nasal oxygen out more than once and yesterday he pulled his heart monitor wires loose-he really doesn't like the suction line in his mouth but so far he's left that one in!

Mama was discharged yesterday, looking much more like herself!  Ryan will remain at Children's for some time yet as he is a preemie, but the outlook is great!  He has none of the other birth defects associated with EA for which we are all grateful.

Our family's Christmas miracle!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

My Studio!

For the longest time I called this the "basement" or the "sewing room" but I've taken to calling it my studio lately.  That name makes me feel like an artist.  Maybe that applies, maybe not-I think that depends on how much trouble my current project is giving me!  I sometimes have trouble bringing my vision to life, sigh.  Enough of that!

Pictures of the current state of my studio:
This is my new IKEA cabinet back to back with the old one.  Big space on the top there-perfect for wrapping gifts as well as stitching!  The drawers hold clothing patterns, large piece of fabric, felt and fleece.  Both cabinets are on wheels so I can have a really long, high top for pin basting quilts, or if I need them out of the way for a gathering. (The fireplace has not been lit since I moved in-in 2000- and in fact has a "Plug" of batting and fabric covered insulation board in it to keep the cold air out and the warm in!)
 Here you can see the two cabinets back to back, ironing board at the end.  I may make a large rectangular ironing space for one top then the ironing board will only come out to press trousers!  The other IKEA cabinet has twelve drawers and holds
fat quarters, ribbons, lace, and scraps that don't fit the scrap sorters boxes under the cabinet!
There's a six foot table for my sewing machines, as well as a four foot cutting table (on stilts to make it easier.) behind one of my Treadle machines "Grace" which needs some TLC before I can use it.  You can see a bit of my design wall as well.
My slow-stitching chair, light etc where I can usually be found in the evening; quilting, knitting or cross-stitching while I watch TV.
The doll house is in the corner-still setting that space up and thinking about the doll house.  This is one my Dad made for Elizabeth in 1986 for Christmas.  She only has boys and no place for it so I got it!  Always wanted one.  It does have a long way to go and miniatures have a pretty steep learning curve--may take a while.
Non-quilting fabric, quilt batts, yarn, etc have found a home in the laundry room where I can easily access them (especially nice that I no longer have to freeze to get something out!)
Lastly, these are the bookshelves that store my craft books, buttons and the grandsons toys!  Just to the right is the opening to the under stairs area that I call my safe place when there are serious thunderstorms, read tornados!  I keep a crate in there for the cat, as well as other emergency supplies May though October.  Quinn likes to go in there and lay on the rug at night.

That's it the creative cave!  I think I'll go down there now and wrap some gifts!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

At Last-some show and tell!

I've been absent from blogville off and on this whole year, I hope to change that!

For those of you that don't know Scott and Bri are expecting their first child soon (more on that in a minute) and I have been busy making things for shower presents etc.  The baby boy (Alexander or Christopher or Ryan or Henry--not the be decided until he's born) has a gap in his esophagus and will require surgery soon after he's born.  So they have migrated from their home in Columbia, Mo to St Louis, Mo to be near St Louis Children's Hospital.  He isn't due until Feb but his issue brings with it excess amniotic fluid-lots of excess-and so Bri is a candidate for preterm labor.  Anyway, I'm sure that he will be fine in the end but it has been quite nerve wracking for all of us-especially them!  So I decided that I should give this to her before the shower and it's good thing I did as the shower has now been cancelled!  So this is my Version of "Moon Dance" a pattern by Kris Meares that I won in a giveaway quite a while ago. (Thought I'd never get to use it!  Now there are baby boys all over the place! Although it can be made for girls too!))

I have another small quilt to show you but the only photos are on my phone and want to be quite difficult about moving over to the laptop!  Maybe later!

I made an IKEA run last week for another cabinet for my studio!  It will be the same height as the other one giving me a very large surface for cutting out clothing patterns or a very long surface for pinning quilts.  Both cabinets are on wheels to allow moving them about.  When I get the drawers put together, installed and loaded I'll put up pictures of my new studio.  I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!  I'm hoping the four large drawers will allow my small fabric stash to find a home in the studio and not on shelves in the garage.  I think I'll store it by yardage, it's already wrapped around file folders and measured so that should be rather simple.

Also in the studio, I moved two four drawer cabinet units out of the laundry into the studio and am setting that area up as space to work on the doll house.  That's a very slow-work in slow progress.  I need to kilz the entire house and then draw up a lighting plan.  I don't think I know enough about how I want to decorate the house for that or for that matter how to do the wiring--Youtube here I come!

Perhaps with all the other studio tweaks I'll finally cut some shelves down to length to add to the bookcases in there, who knows?  Also I need to go buy a couple more project boxes-I like them as they are not too deep and I have taken to rolling up strips already cut for quilts.  It keeps them from getting wrinkled!

All this talk about the studio makes me want to be down there!  I'm off!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Grateful Day!

Happy Thanksgiving! 

Enjoy family, food and fun!

Now I'm off to load the truck!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Never in the Office

I am almost never in my office.  The place where my computer is.  It's like I moved my stitching to the basement, created a studio and never want to go any where else in the house.  Weird.

I have been very busy stitching and still can't show anything!  After the 20th of December I can show some different things, but for now you are stuck with this weeks cross-stitch update!  This is last week.
This is tonight.
There are so many thread changes in these patterns!  They are slow!  And I'm doing it backwards to the pattern-tricksy that- some unstitching is usually required.  I don't think I spent as much time on it this past week as I've been working on the deadline pieces.  (One of which I will finish tomorrow--Praise all the Gods and Goddesses!)  Then over the weekend I should finish another one leaving me with only two and one of those will be quick-I hope.)

I have changed a couple of other things around.  I am no longer making lists!  I was a total list maker for years, thinking that I accomplished more by checking it off but lately I've found it better to just decide at the moment what I want to do.  Of course, if I have a appointment or something then it goes on the calendar but otherwise I just choose.  Thing is many times I'd make the list and then choose to do something else so why bother?

I think I told you I was doing only one hour of housework daily.  It's soon going to be difficult to find enough housework to fill an hour as it's surprisingly quick to do most household chores.  Plus the house is pretty clean to start with now.  I LOVE THIS!  Now if my fifteen minute chores where going as well, sigh.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Cross-Stitch Stocking

Here's this week's update on the current Christmas Stocking (Kolby's)!

Last week
 And tonight
There's quite a bit of the beard of the Santa on the right filled in but it's so light it doesn't show well.
I'm quite pleased with my progress as I'm doing it along with other projects.  Perhaps I'll be able to hang this one with the others by Christmas.  Then I'll only have three more to make--Nora's up next, she gets Christmas mice!

Winter came!

The cold the weather guessers said was coming?  It came.  Yesterday, Quinn and I got up to a thin layer of sleet on everything outside and temperatures well below normal-like 25degrees below normal!  Today is cold as well but I don't mind-more time to read and sew!

I spent two days finishing up all the things I needed to do to be ready for cold weather over the weekend-finially finishing on Monday with a little painting outside.  Now I only need to fill my truck up with gas and buy some more ice melt and I'll be set.  I'll probably add some groceries to the house later this week but I'm pretty good there as well.

I've decided to spend no more than one hour every day cleaning house!  I had let things get to a mess while painting etc and it's taking a bit to get it back in shape.  By limiting the time I have to spend at it I actually DO it!  What can I say works for me.  I do have a "Suffer for 15" minutes clean up going on in the garage but again by limiting the time I spend at it I actually DO it-it will be nice to be able to find things on my workbench.

I finally got all the roofing wood off the doll house.  Spent hours scraping, pulling staples, and trying various solvents to take the glue off only to discover as a last resort that the glue was water based!  A wet paper towel covered by a plastic grocery bag and it peeled off easily!  This is the second time I've fought with removing glue only to discover that it was water based, hopefully the next time I'm confronted with old glue I'll think to try water first!

I've nearly finished all three secret tops, one is being hand quilted and the other two will be machine quilted in the ditch.  Looks like I'll make my deadlines easily!  That means I've had more time for cross-stitching.  I'll post progress on that later today.

Life is good!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Shopping trips

I am not a huge fan of shopping.  That makes me an oddity I suppose, but I dislike spending time that I could be doing something more fun-like reading or sewing!  I also find it frustrating when I am unable to find whatever it is I'm shopping for.  Clothes shopping is the worst.  Since the weather has turned cool I found myself severely short of shirts with long sleeves,  even counting the three turtlenecks I've had for ten years!  (Those from the mens department seem to last much longer than the ones for ladies.)  So I had to go shopping.  Then there were a few stitching needs, so I've made two trips to Joannes and will need to go get floss tomorrow, sigh.  I always make sure that my cold weather grandchildren are suited up for the winter (throw back to being unable to do as well for my own children), I'd bought the big boys coats several weeks ago which was all they needed this year.  Ethan, tiny, tiny Ethan had actually outgrown ALL of last years stuff!  With all of that and a few other things to get or take care of for winter I spent almost the entire day out and about.  This year was a lucky one, I found everything on my list without traipsing all over town.  I was tired though, really tired.  Next will be Christmas shopping--thank goodness for Amazon!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

They say winter is coming.

The weather guessers are telling us to expect more wintery weather.  Not snow yet but cold air.  I don't doubt that the high will be over freezing but well short of the 60some degrees of today.  Tomorrow will be much cooler but the really cold stuff hits next week.  I've been getting ready for it and today did some outside work on the house and finished washing the windows.  I have trouble hauling my big ladder around to do the outside of the front windows so this year I tried some of the window washer stuff that you screw onto the hose and spray on the glass.  I can't say that I was impressed by it.  It left dirty spots all over.  I think in my next house I'll take a page from the Irish and leave a wide-5' maybe- gravel walkway all around the house!  (When I asked why the houses all had them, the answer came back that it was tradition but perhaps because it was easier to wash the windows then.)  I still need to vacuum the screens and replace them but that only means the window will be up for a moment.

I hauled a load of stuff up to the donation place, yeah!  My garage now has more space and Hank (the snow thrower) can sit up by the door thus making him accessible when the snow flies (and sticks to my drive!)

Did some necessary shopping-which didn't even come close to doing all my shopping, Friday will be very busy with that!

Quinn and I took a walk, first one in a good long while as I've been resting my foot.  I just got so tired of not doing anything I had to get out.  Tonight my heel hurts some but not too bad so I think well try it again.

I live a quiet life.  I like it like that.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Cross-stitch Update!

I can't show you my other stitching but I can show you Kolby's stocking!
And today:
Wow, I thought I'd really been making progress but it sure doesn't look like it here!  I need to spend more time stitching!  Alas, tomorrow I must finish another list!

Monday, November 3, 2014


I am a list maker.  I love a good list.  I love it when I can drawn a line through a finished chore!  That said, I always overestimate the amount of work I will accomplish in one day, sigh.  Sometimes it's that there aren't enough hours for the day in question, sometimes it's my level of involvement in the whole chore process.  I'd really rather read a book, or stitch, or play with the dog, or ---you get the picture.  Today, I got most things done.  Not all so some of them will have to go on other days this week, some are nearly finished now.  One or two biggish things were done today:  the gas bbq grill that I never used was re-homed to Rob's house and I think I have stored everything away for winter!  That bbq grill is heavy!  Someday soon I'll take a day off and just stitch!  I might have to take several off to meet my deadlines on some sewing projects.

So I'm off right now to make up my bed with clean sheets--gotta check that off the list!  Also, I need to get in that bed and it's chilly enough that I really need blankets!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

An October finish

 This is my Portable Sewing Center!  Designed by Ami Simms.  It is made from two pair of old jeans-great repurposing!  I had to go to the thrift store to buy mine as you can't use stretch denim.  A bit tricky at times and very bulky.  I had to make a couple of adjustments as my machine would not stitch through the many layers of denim there are in places.  I like it and think it will be useful, easy to just pick up and go.  Currently loaded with Hexi flowers.
Inside!  Clips hold pieces for blocks. There are pockets for tools and thread, plus a large zip pocket!

Bottom, zipper allows for a small pillow to rest your arms on.

Top, zipper for finished blocks, etc.  Yes, I know the zipper's crooked-she said to go crazy!
You know yesterday how I was so psyched about getting my list done?  Today was not as great, sigh. I did make good progress but not nearly done.  One project proved to be too much for me to do all at once-so I divied it up over several days and should have it done by weeks end.  Oh well, tomorrow is another day and unfortunately, no elves will come in and do my work over night!

I did make some stitching progress today as well, on those secret projects.  Cut more strips for a log cabin quilt as well as borders.  Soon, I'll be starting another quilt top-its already cut.  I will be machine quilting it as there are deadlines looming and I'll be working hard to hand quilt the ones I  have ready!

Outside work is slowing way down, there will be leaves for another month but that's just November, and there are some chores to finish up on warmer days this week.  As long as it isn't terribly windy, today was awful.  The snow thrower is in the garage for Rob to work on, my brother came and cleaned the grill (He has a steam cleaning business) and we will load it up tomorrow and take it over to Rob's house as I never use it.  I have at least one more load to take to the donation store from the garage, probably more later on as I continue to lighten the load!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Another month gone.

Now that the Playoffs and World Series are over I can think about blogposts!  Super proud of the Kansas City Royals!  They may have lost the 7th game of the World Series but for the first time in a very long time they were playing in it!  It was very exciting and the whole metro was really up for it and behind the team!  We bleed blue during baseball season.!  (During football season the metro bleeds red for the Chiefs and in our family we bleed black and gold for the University of Missouri--MIZZOU!  Go Tigers!)

October just flew by.  I swear time evaporates! Anywho, I made two weekend trips in October.  One to Denver for my Sister-in-laws birthday and one to San Diego for my Granddaughter's birthday.  Nora, the granddaughter turned five.  I won't say how old Jessie is!  Both were fun weekends, I enjoyed my time with family and especially the walk on the beach with Nora, Candice and Steven!
Unfortunately, I took to the airways instead of the highways!  My choice, but I swear I will not get on a domestic airliner again!  (Boy, I bet I eat those words--maybe I should add unless absolutely necessary!)  I don't think I've ever had a more de-humanizing experience-they should rename airports, holding pens and airplanes, cattle cars, as that's just what they make you feel like!  But enough of that--I had a great time while in both places.  Did some shopping in Denver (really exciting stuff in Denver, a new rolling pin and fish spatulas!  As well as part of Nora's gift at the Disney Store.)  I found time to visit Rosie's Calico cupboard in San Diego for a little fabric therapy!  I love that store.

All those trips and all that dining out (and all the alcohol in Denver) meant that this months weight isn't great.  I lost only one lonely little pound, sigh.  I guess I should be happy I didn't gain ten! I am, believe me I am!  This month will be better!

I have been stitching up a storm down in the studio--loving that space, practically living down there!  I just can't show any of it as most is for gifts and the folks read this blog!  I do have a finish to show you tomorrow.

Well, with this blog post I've done nearly everything on my list for today!  That's a rare thing.  I wonder if I worked hard or just made a better list?

See you back here tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Cross-stitch update

Here's the promised update!  I almost went to bed without it--i'm so lazy sometimes!

 And now

I'd have been a bit further but I couldn't find the new bundle of thread I needed!  (It'a in this house somewhere!)  There are a lot of thread changes in these so it's pretty slow going.

Now, I'm going to bed!  I've been standing up at the cutting table dealing with the leftovers of fabric from various projects and cutting pieces for quilts in progress.  Working on a Bonnie Hunter design that needs 180-  4 patches with a finished size of 2 inches.  Do you know how long it takes to cut that many pairs?  I still have 50 to cut, sigh.

Raining again, as it has off and on all day.  This round is more of the downpour variety complete with thunder and lightening.  (Quinn  has been busy barking at the thunder -man I wish she'd get over that habit!)

Wow, it's October already!

I am a bad blogger!  It's been a whole month since I did a post, sigh.  It's not that I haven't been on the blog reading other peoples stuff I just haven't taken the time to write. I think Im boring.  That said prepare to bored some more.

In the Weight loss category:  I am sad to say I did not loose a single pound in September.  Okay, that's not completely correct--I lost the same three pounds several times!  I did lose inches though, so it wasn't a total wash.  It was a tough month for some reason, I'll do better this month.

In the knee category:  The nerve test results finally came in.  There is no pinched nerve anywhere.  Good news, I guess.  But, here's the kicker, the sural nerve (runs down the back of your leg close to the outside of your leg) is compromised.  It was damaged during the cyst removal surgery and it takes months to regenerate.  About 1 inch a month. It is much better, with still a ways to go.  In the meantime, the message from the brain to my foot doesn't get all the way through so I don't walk properly.  Can't walk properly.  That's what causes the pain from my knee to my hip (and the heel pain.)  Back on neurotin, to quiet things down.  And back on my BIKE!  Dr's orders!  Also continuing at the Chiropractor's as he is stimulating the nerve, which helps with the pain.

My cataracts are not (and maybe never will be) ready to come off.  Tried of that-as I can't see all that well.  Am headed to different Dr next year.  Also headed out to one of the eye places to get new computer glasses as I lost mine!

I have been sewing quite a bit since I got the studio set up.  I can't show much as most of the sewing is for gifts (and the folks read my blog!) Will post a photo of the studio after I clean it up!  I've made a pretty big mess!

I'll be back a bit later with this week's cross-stitch update!  That will make two posts in  one day!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Reporting in. . .

In August I only lost 5 pounds, sigh.  What can I say, I still can't ride my bike and it's been HOT so it's a struggle.   I did lose a bit more in inches as well-which explains why I simply can not keep my pants up!  Only need to wear the shorts for a few more weeks though.  Have finally decided that I simply can not eat only 1200 calories a day and still function so I reset my goals to 1 pound a week.  I know I can stay at or under 1500 calories, it will just take a while longer.  I hope to begin water aerobics this month even though it seems a bit silly when I'll be gone most of October.

On other fronts, I've a tidy house again!  The kitchen work is finished and except for some packing up everything is tidy.  Tomorrow, I'll scrub bathrooms to paint trim etc on Wednesday.  By September's end I should be completely finished with the stuff that needed to happen before I could sell the place!  Yeah!  Have no idea when I'll put it on the market or where I'm going when it sells but first things first.

I've been redoing Kolby's patch blanket, adding quilting instead of just ties and resewing all the patches.  I think Brayden's will be less work, just more stitching on his patches.  Ethan's the same.  Don't know what happened on Kolby's but the backing was all wrinkled and a mess-probably sewer error!

Still working on Kolby's Christmas stocking.  I'm at the fold-ugh- it's hard to keep flipping back and forth! In fact that's where I'm headed right now, down to the basement to sew on patches and make x's!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A Finish and an Update!

First the finish!

A bright baby quilt for a soon to be born baby boy!  My machine quilting definitely needs work!  It's cute though, I hope his mama likes it.

Now a cross-stitch update.  When you last saw it:

And now:
I've been working really hard on it, I'd really like to finish this one and begin the next one before Christmas!  I always hope to finish two in a year but it never happens, sigh.  I have this one and three more to do before I'm caught up.  I only needed two more until Scott and Bri announced that they are expecting in February!  It will be their first and they will be awesome parents!  I'd like a little girl as we are heavy on the boys in the family but I will love it no matter what!

It's going to be quite hot for the next several days, so I'll be hibernating in the basement in my new studio!  More cross-stitching will be done and maybe a little machine sewing as well.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Hill country Spring!

So here it is!  In all it's "Glory" ;))

So glad I took the borders off it would have been really wide!  As it is it covers the (very deep) mattress and meets the dust ruffle!

Here's a close up of the quilting Robin did, looks great.

Another one off the list!

Monday, August 4, 2014

The Completed Office

I have finished every task in the office save one, I need to fix the shelf in the closet.  I've fixed it twice before and the screws will not stay in the wall, even with anchors!  Need to think on how to fix it. might need a board put up or something.

At any rate it is done and in use.  I know there were photos in 2010 when I moved into this room but I can't find them!  So no before photos.  It's a small room so getting a good photo is hard and the color is off in these-it's Easter Egg green (or so Tanya tells me!)

The view from the door.
The view from the corner.

The view from my desk chair.
I haven't decided if I'll keep the chair or move a small piece of furniture in (once I buy it) to hold my tv and DVD collection.  I think it depends on how well I get "air" tv in the basement.

Yes, there's huge pile of paper on the corner of the desk-mostly Town of Kansas Stuff to sort and enter onto the computer.

I think I will like this arrangement better and it will show to buyers better.  Quinn loves the new space-there's actually room for her to lay on the floor and she's found TWO air conditioning vents she can lay by!  Heaven.  

Part of the ME Project complete!  Having is tidy house is a big Happiness boost!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Project Me--July update

I can happily say that I lost another 8 pounds during July making a total of 20 pounds lost!  I found that little piece of paper with my measurements on it from April 26 and this morning's measurements show that I am down 1 inch in the bust, 3 inches in the waist and 2 inches in the hips!  This makes me really happy!  I needed a new push to keep going-while I am determined to loose the weight, losing the bike ride has made it more difficult.  Dieting is SO boring!  I  am wearing a pair of shorts this morning that I couldn't even get up to my waist in June--of course that means that all my other shorts are getting harder and harder to keep up!  That's a lovely problem, or it would be if shorts were available in stores here-fall stuff's out.  I have a long way to go, when I began in June I figured that it would take a bit over a year to lose the weight I wanted to at a 2 pounds per week rate-so 10 or 11 months from now I'll be thinking about how I'm going to  maintain my skinny self. (As well as what to do about all the extra skin!)

Other parts of the project are moving, at last!  The office is nearly finished, I need to find my desk top, paint the vent covers and put back up, buy curtains for the windows and the closet door, make some cushions for my rocker and decide on wall ornaments.  Once done I'll have a reveal.  Oh, I need to buy a skinny head extension cord as well!  The room looks much better, the only trouble being that I've lost my tv watching space.  Must figure out where to put that tv in the studio as it is the one I hook up to the "air" to watch for free, don't get as many channels but that's ok by me as I don't watch that much anyway.

Speaking of the studio, I'll begin working there now but the pool table is still in the way.  My Dad is trying to sell it without much success, so I'm waiting until Aug 10 to take it down and return it.  Meanwhile I'll fix some rather minor issues with the walls and stick down tiles where I can reach.

Quilting wise, I finished Hill Country Spring and began a baby quilt.  Cross-stitching showed a bit of progress as well.  I really didn't stitch much for the past two months.  BUT, I did stitch.

On the knee front.  I'll be calling the ortho today to make an appointment as the insurance referral went through (quite speedily!) yesterday.  I feel like a broken record.  It has made me decide to change things  I've been dithering over -like where to live etc-as I'm not getting any younger and who knows how long I'll be able to hike and bike etc. I guess a kick in the pants (or in my case, knee) has been needed!
I'm off the the chiropractor this morning, then a few errands before I hit the office again.

Have a great day, get in something creative and enough sleep!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Cross-stitch Wednesday

I've looked and looked through my photos and I can't find a "before" post for Kolby's stocking.  It's really not much of a difference as I haven't made tons of progress since (or still) but I did promise to try and post progress. (There's and ulterior motive there-in order to post I have to actually work on it!)  So here it is now:
Not a great photo, sigh.  I'll try and do better next week.

Also on the stitching front I've finished the binding on Hill Country Spring!  I'll take a photo as soon as I have my bed made up properly for it- I hope that will be tomorrow. 

I have a new quilt up on the design wall/board-whatever.  A baby quilt using some of the Rainbow scrap blocks that I made last year.
Currently the blocks are just pinned up there on the sashing fabric but tomorrow I hope to cut the sashing, borders and binding. To begin stitching the top together Friday (after I set up a table to sew on in the basement/studio-more on that later.)

I'm nearly finished with the redo to the office (formerly the office/studio and very full).  I'll do a reveal as soon as I'm all organized in there.  You would not believe how much stuff I hauled to the basement for the studio!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

The Weekly Deal

Hi all!  I'm trying for once a week, ugh, probably won't make it.  The big news is all about the knee.  Chiropractor on Wednesday and Friday--hips out of alignment and band on left leg very tight.  He can feel a cyst in the back of the knee--again, sigh.  He will do treatments for the hips and band hoping that relieving the inflammation will help the cyst dissolve. Monday, Wednesday, Friday for 4 weeks. (I don't think he's very hopeful.)  MD on Thursday, the back of my knee is swollen and she acknowledges the fact that I know what I'm talking about! She has ordered an MRI (scheduled for this coming Wednesday.) Probably will end up at orthopedics if confirmed.  Hi! Dr Salin!  I believe that all the riding I've been doing probably caused it and may have been a factor in last years cyst issues, so I'm off the bike until further notice.  I'm willing to try most anything to keep from having that surgery again, it was without doubt the most painful thing I've ever had!

On other fronts, I'm still working on Kolby's stocking, still have Hill Country Spring to  bind (geesh someone should crack a whip over me!)  I had Brayden and Kolby every afternoon last week, it was lovely and cool so we did some outside history places, had Yogurtini and went to the movies.  Between that and the doctors I really didn't have much time at home!

I drove to Columbia to visit Scott and Bri yesterday returned with a sofa for Beth.  Good thing I have a truck!  I ate entirely too much-I'll be afraid to step on the scale in the morning!  But we went out fro Indian food and I never get to have that, SO good!

I'm tired, going to put my legs up and stitch a little while watching the telly!  Something I'll be doing quite a bit this week as it's to get very HOT  and HUMID again.  I hate it.  Somedays I'd just like to sleep until blessed fall!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

What have I been up to?

Good question.  Last week I had Brayden here every morning, then drove him to computer camp.  Somewhere in there he learned to watch UTube and hacked his X-Box!  Eekk!  Another geek!
This week I'm picking Brayden and Kolby up at noon from Vacation Bible School and then we're hanging out and making some field trips.

I've been riding my bike still, BUT (and it's a big one) I'm having pain in the back of my knee and up to my hip.  Just like last summer, sigh.  I'm hoping and hoping it isn't a returned cyst!  I have doctor's appointments both tomorrow morning and Thursday morning, hoping I can get an MRI scheduled.  Because of that, I've cut riding back to every other day.:((  I am doing 15 miles now though but it's beginning to look shaky for that 35 miler, for the second year in a row.  The pain is not yet severe so I'm hoping to catch it early, I'll let you know.  On the days I don't ride Quinn and I are walking at least three miles as I still need to get in my 10,000 steps.

I have lost a total of 17 lbs!  Some of my pants no longer need to be unbuttoned to take them off (Some of them barely stay up!)  It's a nice problem to have but summer clothes are nearly gone from the stores, so I'm hoping to make due until fall.  Although if it stays cool like it is now (70F today's high, last nights low was 54F) I won't need to worry about it as jeans will be the clothing of choice and while they are looser they're not to the falling off stage yet! (And are much easier to replace, year round.)

I've been working on Kolby's Christmas stocking every day, making some progress.  I have to show you tomorrow.  Tonight I'll work on that again and trim Hill Country Spring for binding.  Would like to have that sewn on to take to Scott's this weekend and stitch down while we visit.  (I always take something and rarely work on it!)

Wish I was doing something more exciting!  I am enjoying the cool weather while it hangs around!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Yardwork, finished! At least until next weekend.

We've had a bit of a cool down.  Last Monday is was horrid hot, humid and windy.  Terrible combination!  Then we had a cool front come through and the lows were in the 50F's-oh so lovely.  I took the opportunity to get caught up with the yard.  The list of things needing doing seemed to go on forever and I've spent the better part of the past four days getting everything marked off!  I still have a couple of tree limbs that need cut back and one potted plant that wants repotted, and of course now the weeds are beginning to pop up again!  At least now it's just maintaining which is quick, and mowing of course.  I am tired, stiff and sore--really my next house is going to have a hot tub!  This level of activity is more my normal, before knee surgeries, way of life, I'm hoping I can keep going inside now.  Tomorrow is going to be hot, humid and windy again--need to get up early and get the walk and bike ride out of the way!  Well, I'm off the turn the telly on and watch some more "Castle" episodes!

Monday, June 30, 2014

End of the month update on the "Me Project"

It's been a couple of weeks since I last posted, sorry ;(( I mostly don't have a lot to say right now.

I've lost 12 pounds this month (or 5.44 Kgs-I think I like the English system for this it seems like more just because it's a bigger number!)! Yeah me! The Myfitnesspal app and the fitbit have made a HUGE difference-so easy to use!  I'd like to tell you if inches have been lost but that seems to be impossible.  I know I took my measurements, I know I wrote them down, I even remember thinking that it would be an easy place to find that piece of paper.  Alas, I can not find it!  (No doubt it will turn up as soon as I quit looking for it!)

I'm walking Quinn everyday and riding my bike most every day.  I'm up to riding 13.3 miles-that's 21.4 kilometers.  After 5 more rides at that distance I'll add another mile marker-which will add two miles to the round trip.  Here's hoping I've done enough by the time the Buffalo Classic 35 miler comes along in September!

I'm currently getting all the gardens, which seem to have run amok with violets and weeds- cleaned up, spreading lime (due to acorns!) and compost, moving some plants and adding others in the front shade garden.  We've had a good bit of rain, just often enough that watering hasn't been an issue, so everything is in good shape for the moment.  It is very hot today 92F/33C with enough humidity to create the famous "blue" effect we are known for and to give us heat index readings of 99F/33C to 104F/40C.  Plus the wind is blowing 10-15 with gust up to 30 MPH.  Quinn and I tried to walk--just too icky-sticky hot for that, I didn't ride either.  I did run a couple of errands, one of which was to pick up Hill Country Spring from the long arm quilter.  I'll post a photo when I get it bound-that will be a bit as I have to acquire fabric (oh, darn it!)

I've decided to take the pool table down, it's been used exactly 3 times in 18 months making it a large floor weight!  When it's gone and the room repainted etc I'll be moving my studio back downstairs leaving this room as just an office.  I don't really like having the studio down there, there are lighting issues and it's chilly in the winter but both of those can be remedied.

The rest of today will be spent cleaning house, doing laundry etc at a very slow pace as I have no desire to "work up a sweat" over it.  Quinn needs a good grooming, I have some work to do in the garage and somewhere in there I'd like to at least type on the Town of Kansas stuff!  Trying to find a balance in all of this is tough!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Me Project Update

Since I last posed I have lost four pounds!  I love my Fitbit and I love MyFitnessPal both make counting calories ( both ways, on when I eat and off when I exercise) so much easier.  I'm up to 8 miles on the bike-it's really  amazing how quickly you gain strength in your legs.  Quinn and I are still walking, unless it's raining.  So except for not eating enough calories some days, that part of things is going well.  Other parts of the projects are still not off the ground, sigh.  I'm hoping that I can add things to the finished list more as I go.  The first few days of exercise I was so tired I had to have a nap before lunch!    Now I don't always nap, so I just need to find my mojo for the other stuff.  It'll come, change is hard.

I'm going to take off borders on Hill Country Spring so I can send it off to be quilted, it won't fit my long-armers frame if I don't.  I thought about leaving them on and quilting it by hand but I just don't feel this one deserves that ( I have some on the list that will get hand quilted but not his one.)

Our quilt guild had Ami Simms on Monday-she's a hoot! I need to order one of her patterns, for a quilted jacket.

Nothing else to report, boring, boring stuff!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

A New Project--Me!

Today I began a new project.  Seems like I do that quite often, if only my finishes equaled my starts!  This one is a bit different-it's all about me.  Today I began tracking my food and exercise in a little app called myfitnesspal hoping to lose some serious weight and get healthy.  (My Fitbit arrives on Tuesday to count my little steps!)  I also want to be in condition for a 35 mile bike ride in September.  Today I have: walked Quinn 1.8 miles in 30 minutes, done my stretches and therapy exercise, took Annie (my bike)  for a six mile ride in 40 minutes, then spent 3 hours gardening.  At this point I can eat over 1,000 calories for dinner and still make my target.  I don't think I'll eat that much though.  Also on the project are all the craft, home repairs, yard work, etc, etc, etc.  that are already begun.  Gretchen Rubin of  The Happiness Project  is studying habits and has discovered that tracking your progress is a really helpful way to accomplish change.  I hope it proves to be so for me, I've spent entirely too much time getting "lost in a book" (especially ones I've read before-some many times) and not on projects.  I've already lost 3 lbs-and that was before I started!

Perhaps I'll manage a Sunday Status Report, or not, who knows?

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Holy cow, I haven't posted in a really long time!

I keep thinking I'll do a post but I never seem to get around to it!

We've been quite busy getting ready for the epic wedding!  Which came off last Saturday without a hitch!  Bride was beautiful, groom handsome, all the attendants lovely, and the ring bearers/sign carriers and flower girl were amazing!  Brayden, 8, and Kolby, 5, carried in a sign which said "Your last chance to run" wearing tuxs and fedoras (just like the groom and best man--that would be my boys, Rob and Scott)-Brayden carried the rings in his pocket for hand-off to Uncle Rob and Kolby took charge of the hats.  Nora, 4, was a perfect flower girl dropping her petals with deliberation and looking adorable in a tea-length white dress.  Much fun was had at the reception, dancing, dancing and more dancing!  Pictures will follow as soon as they are available but Rob and Tanya are in the Dominican Republic on their honeymoon for 10 days-so it'll be a little while.

Other than that-this has been a horrid allergy/asthma season.  A trip to the doctor got me the following:  "Stay inside in the air conditioning, follow the allergy forecast and only go out on green days."  I asked about walking the dog, riding my bike, and gardening--"Well, you might be able to go out very early in the morning," he says.  What about cabin fever (I can get this really bad in summer) advice the same. So in December I might be able to go outside.  That just doesn't fly, here's hoping the triggers wind down! Otherwise I'll really be looking at moving to Montana.

My left foot is till recreating nerve cells.  I really would like for it to get done soon!  With each new set of "Zingers" there is pain in other areas of my foot.  Walking is somewhat interesting--oh wait, I'm not supposed to do that! Or at least not outside.

I've finished "Twisted" and have it on the bed, if you scroll down a couple of posts you can see it as a top.  It looks much the same. Still making hexies.  Next quilting project for the sewing machine is making wonky log cabin blocks from last year's rainbow challenge blocks and quilting them in strips.  Also up is beginning the hand quilting on Hill Country Spring and beginning Steve's Gasket.  Other crafty type things going on are cross-stitch (if I ever make progress on it I'll post about it), doll clothes for Miss Nora, and misc home decor stuff will post on that later as well.

I'm gearing up for interior home repairs, which require moving and or packing up a great deal of stuff.  I don't want to, I don't want to, I don't want to--but I do want to put my house on the market so it must be done.  Quite a bit of those things I move out or pack up won't come back out in this house.

The only other thing I'm really doing is working on the "Town of Kansas" book, though not very diligently lately due to the "Epic wedding."

Must go, need to water plants--wait for it--OUTSIDE!  I'm a terrible patient.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

It's getting green!

I noticed today that the tulip trees are blooming, along with the daffodils. The grass has really greened up this past week, in fact I told Quinn I might have to MOW this weekend!  I'm nearly finished with the spring leaves, after filling 20 paper landscape bags!  There's always leaves in the spring as I have oak trees and they don't lose all their leaved in the fall, there are still a few hanging out on the tree, but usually not as many as this year.  That's thanks to the knee thing and not being able to get a proper cleanup done last fall.  Soon I'll be hauling out the tiller to dig up my garden spaces.  Only putting out some lettuce, tomatoes and green beans this year-along with the pots of flowers etc.  As tired as I am of winter, I'm not looking forward to summer--hum, just can't please me I guess.

The same old stuff is going on here, working on the books, volunteering, playing with Quinn, etc.  I've finished the backs for two quilts and one if off to the long-armers, I don't think I'll work on any others until after the wedding.  We have started our walks again and I'm getting Annie out this weekend.  I did notice that the trail was closed here on my end so I may have to go to another entry place.  It's time to start training for the Buffalo Classic in September!

I hope spring has come to your neck of the woods as well, enjoy your day.

Thursday, April 3, 2014


Spring has finally arrived, I think.  Along with it came the usual thunder, lightening, rain, flood watches and tornado watches--ah, the weather on the great plains!  We really needed the rain, but perhaps not all at once?  Everything is greening up really fast now and I am really wishing I had all the leaves off the flower beds etc.  I did the front last Saturday and the weather hasn't cooperated since for me to do the back and sides, sigh.  I'm hoping for this weekend now.  Soon it will be time to get the gardens in shape and planted--hum where am I going to put the tomatoes this year?

Have finally finished the back for Twisted!  Need to trim the batt down and it will go off to Robin on the 11th.  The back for Hill Country Spring is in the works, will probably finish it tonight and trim the batt for it as well.  It will go to Robin after Twisted comes back as I can't afford to send them both at once.  They are BIG!

I have dresses to alter for the wedding and that is next up after backs, then I'm making doll clothes for Nora's Cabbage Patch Kids!

Still typing like a mad woman on the Town of Kansas.  Still hitting the library every week for newspapers on microfilm.   Really enjoying it, well except for reading court cases those are boring (can't imagine how lawyers do it all the time!)

Now I'm off to clean another room of my house--it's deep cleaning time!  Room by room is the only way I can stand it!  At the end I will still need to wash windows and curtains but that requires some warm sunny days!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Spring Cleaning Begins!

I got tired of waiting for spring so I decided to start the big, deep, spring cleaning a few days early!  Crazy person that I am I started with my sewing room/office.  What can I say, I needed to boost of doing something huge.  I think I picked the right place as it's such a tiny space to hold so much stuff (plus I keep trying to get more stuff in there).  It's moving along, coming together, should finish it tomorrow.

Right now I'm going to go find food!

Thursday, March 27, 2014


I, along with most folks around here, are wondering if spring is ever going to show it's face!  There are some signs-the crocus are blooming in all their purple glory, some of the trees show that red haze that occurs just before the leaves pop out, and I noticed this morning that the weeping willow I can see from my kitchen has a green haze (it's always first to leaf out)-BUT snow is in the forecast for tomorrow!  At least we have had no more frigid weather and we did get some much needed rain last night, BUT it is quite windy and too cool to enjoy being outside for long.  Unless, of course, you are Quinn and wearing a nearly water-proof fur coat!

Weather being what it is I'm still suffering from cabin fever.  I have scanned roll after roll of newspapers on microfilm looking for articles written by John Calvin McCoy as well as those written about the others I'm researching.  Then,d I've spent hours and hours typing those articles into my word processor (can't say Word as I have a Mac and use Open Office).  Yesterday, I was reading in 1879 and 1880 Kansas City Journal, there were some articles outside my research I found quite interesting.  First, there were articles about a war being fought in Afganistan, and there was an article on how food was being poisoned-made me think "the more things change the more they stay the same."  Trite but true.  Second, I noticed how much was written about Ireland.  I have a special Ireland shaped place in my heart so I really took notice of that.  Much was written about Parnell and his activities, and the hunger of the Irish people (this was the last Potato famine, and resulted in hunger without the mass deaths of previous famines)-lots of Irish aid societies- there was even one article about O'Connell.

I've also been finishing up the "Twisted" flimsy:
  Sorry about the photo, I haven't a place to spread it out except the guest bed (it's future home).  I'm hoping to get up the courage to cut the back and sew it together tonight--it's hard to cut into an 8yd piece knowing I might have made a mistake in my arithmetic (never my strong suit).  Then when the batting its trimmed down it will be ready to take to Robin, my talented long-armer, to be quilted.  Only the back is needed for Hill Country Spring as well but again having trouble cutting into that fabric!  Soon I hope to have two more finishes for 2014.  I have some nine patches going as leaders and enders, some blocks ready to set-I'm going to try some quilt-as-you go on my machine for those, the hexies but no new projects in quilting!  Of course, I have other projects in other areas too numerous to mention as this post has grown long as it is!

Off to do my exercises, stretch and meditate, then after lunch it's Museum day!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Happy St Patrick's Day

Happy St Patrick's Day!  I'm missing Ireland so much lately, it's even invading my sleep!  Between Ireland and Montana I'm hopeless! In other news--or not.

I've finished all the rows for Twisted-ugh-now I can begin to put the top together.  I think it's going to be stunning but the instructions are horrid!  Tomorrow, I'll press all the pieces again and begin slowly adding the rows around the center medallion-more like borders really.  Speaking of which, I think it will need a border of black to make it big enough for the bed.  I want to get this one finished and off to the my long armer along with Hill Country Spring--that one's been finished a while waiting for me to make the back and call Robin!  I need to get this out of the way as I have some dresses to alter for the wedding.  It's really outrageous how much they want at the bridal shop to do some really simple alterations!

I'm still typing away on the data for the book.  I'm actually doing two books with this same data, I have been collecting it for the Town book but it would be really cool to have all of McCoy's writings in a separate book.  Just what I need another project!  At least the research is for both.  I'm heading to the library on Wednesday for the day--Quinn is going to camp!  Following that there will be MORE typing!

The weather has been the usual up and down of March although the ups have been really up (80F) and the lows , low (snow).  This week is to continue the trend.  The only part I really hate is the mud. On. Quinn. Ick!

Monday, March 3, 2014

The end of winter?

The calendar says it's March and that should be the end of winter here. Ha!  Later today I'll be clearing 4 inches of snow off my drive.  I am happy that it's only 4 inches as the prediction was for 5-9 inches (boy did they miss that one!)  It is bitterly cold, the last I checked it was zero degrees F with wind chills well below freezing.  The high today isn't to break 20F, our normal high for early March, 50F.  I love winter, it comes right after fall/autumn in the list of seasons for me-fall's the best, summer the worst!  That said, I'm really tired of being cooped up inside!  I was confined all fall with the knee and then winter hit, so can I say "cabin fever!"  I keep telling myself it will soon be nice enough to get Annie (the bike) out and take her for a spin!

I've been working steadily on the book-you'll likely get tired of hearing that!  The current research/biography is centered on John Calvin McCoy whom I have come to admire very much.  I can't say that about all of the others.  It is strange how one can develop an opinion of someone's character when they died in the 1800's!  Most every day I put in several hours on it-I get up every hour or two to do some chores so I don't get too stiff.

I've also been working steadily on "Twisted"  Not spending hours at it but I usually get a few blocks done each evening.  At the end of this week I'm hoping to begin sewing the top together.  I also hope to get the back ready for Hill Country Spring and off to the long-armer.  There are a few new projects I've got on the list for this week as well-likely I won't get them all done but. . . .  I need a fleece cover for my new hottie/hot water bottle--really can not imagine how I've gotten along this far into my life without one! It's so heavenly to put my feet against it, sigh.  I also need a new cover on the heating pad--does it sound like I get cold?  Sometimes, I'm really cold even in the summer-probably need iron!  I also have a zipper to replace in a hoodie, some doll clothes for Nora and a couple of dresses to alter for the big wedding.

Speaking of the wedding, I found my dress yesterday!  There's a big load off!  I found Nora's flower girl dress last weekend and ordered the sash for it yesterday as well.  So only the proper undergarments and shoes left for me!  Oh, and the rehearsal dinner.  We're having a shower for Tanya on Saturday night out at Beth's-that should be fun!

Have to go, time to change the laundry from washer to dryer and fill the washer again!

Monday, February 17, 2014

On the wall, on the table. . .

So this is on my design wall:

The center of "Twisted"   The colors really pop against the black, I wasn't sure about the green but it shows up well.  I like the way it's coming out even though the instructions have been a huge pain in the neck to figure out!  I have the next series of blocks nearly finished, working on them for an hour or less most nights.  Not working very hard at it, I've just relaxed about the whole quilting thing.

This, however, is what I've been working hard at:
This is my Town of Kansas research!  I don't think I'll be eating on my kitchen table for a few days!  I've just been typing things onto the computer for the last couple of weeks but today I had a request for information and wanted to be sure I had all my facts correct--my brain is on overflow, really must order more memory!  I was digging and digging looking for all the right stuff and got HUGELY frustrated.  I hauled every piece of information I've acquired in the past several years into the kitchen and began sorting.  On a happy note, I did find the materials I was looking for!  I'm planning to get this organized before I start typing again.  You can see, though, why I'm anxious to have it done.  I did have an interesting afternoon reading the Circuit Court case that began it all--I have no idea how lawyers can STAND to read this kind of stuff all the time!  

Friday, February 7, 2014


I've been thinking about drought lately.  Not here thankfully, I live east of the line of aridity.  I've been reading The Worst Hard Time which is about the Dust bowl of the 1930's on the high plains.  Every time I look at the cover I think of Chookyblue who is a farm wife in Australia where the drought is severe and heartbreaking.  My son in San Diego is living with a serious drought, in fact all of California is.  They're taking measures to save water and the lawn is dying-to which he says "Cool, I won't have to mow."  Lifestyles have to change and it could happen any where, any time.  Even here, east of the line of aridity, I've lived with droughts.  Usually only for one year though, the dust bowl was for 8 and Chooyblue said they've not had good rain since 2011.  She's putting photos up on her blog-check them out.  Think about how drought affects us all--the biggest effect most of us see are at the grocery store as the cost of food rises.  Then think about what global climate change really means in terms of human (and animal) suffering.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014


It snowed all day yesterday and into the night, 1/2 to 1 inch an hour!  So this morning I woke up to this:
The table on my deck!
I measured the snow on the table where I could reach, 10.5 inches!

Yesterday traffic was basically non-existant as everyone stayed home, today it would be difficult for me to get out as the snowplows haven't been by as yet.  Brayden and Kolby haven't had school yet this week and tomorrow is already cancelled!  As Beth says they'll be going to school in July!  Quinn is loving it, the drifts threatened to stop her dead at first but she has all her paths broken in now.  The sun is bright and the snow brighter.

For the first time I can remember, EVER, I am anxious for Spring.  I think it's because I had all those knee issues last fall and couldn't do much of anything outside like ride my bike or even walk much so my winter "down"time has been really long.  Unhappily, it will be several more weeks before I can say that Spring is here.  Sigh :((

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Contemplating Happiness

I've been thinking quite a lot about happiness and how I could be happier.  I am mostly a happy, optimistic person, I think it's in my character but I also choose to be that way.  Always said that if I had to have wrinkles I wanted them from laughing and smiling!  I've been re-reading Gretchen Rubin's The Happiness Project  and Happier at Home and both have made me think about what makes me happy and what makes me unhappy.  I've had several "light-bulb" moments lately.  Some will shock you, or not.  I don't really like quilting.  So I'll finish the 15 or so I have currently on the list and maybe I'll do another one or two after that-this way I'll know I'm actually fairly good at it even if I don't want to do it all the time.  Plus it's very important to me to finish what I begin.  Sewing makes me happy-making clothes and things for my home-that's good.  Cross-stitch makes me happy, some days, but has taken a back seat to the quilts.  That needs to change.  I love to read!  Almost anything and everything!  Always have, always will that I won't even try to change but maybe I won't feel bad about all the re-reading I do.  I need to clear out some projects and I thought about which one(s) would make me happiest to have done.  So, I'll be focusing on The Town of Kansas and it's book for at least the month of February.  I've been working on it for several (many?) years, it has it's own bookcase and files so clearing that out would be a tremendous accomplishment -and relief.   I don't expect to do much if any stitching and I don't think you should expect a lot of blogging!  Maybe one a week, maybe not.

So some things that have made me happy lately.  A new pair of brown shoes with 2 inch heels-make me FEEL taller, better dressed and are really comfortable!.  I need to find some in black.  A really, really good batch of bread.  Quite possibly the best bread I have ever made, certainly the best I have made in too long a time.  I enjoyed the whole process.  Beta reading Suzie O'Connell"s next book-very fun and I got to read it before anyone else!

Many other things to change, decisions to make, resolutions to keep but I feel like I'm finally moving forward.

Blessed Be!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Under the needle this week

Under the needle this week is "Twisted."  I'm on step 4 which is a really long one.  To top that off I was two, yes TWO, blocks short on the hot purple pink you can just see in the back.  After an exhaustive and exhausting search I didn't have any more fabric!  Quilter's nightmare!  I bought this last summer-what are the odds that anyone would still have it?   I got lucky though, a new and small quilt shop near me still had some, whew.  I bought a yard, just in case I want to do something else with it.

After a full day of shopping and errands I came home and made this:

These have to be the best brownies I have ever made, or eaten for that matter.  I took some over to my neighbors, if I'd eaten all that 13 x 9 inch pan I'd be really sick and quite a lot fatter!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Ten Days? Really?

It can't have been 10 days since I last posted, can it?  Wow.  I guess that would be because nothing much is happening around here!

I've been struggling with getting out of bed in the mornings-I swear I could sleep 24/7 right now.  Have no clue why but it seems to be getting a bit better.  Have also been struggling with doing those pesky exercises and stretches!  But I have done them 4 out of the last 5 days (I didn't do them yesterday as I had the big boys.)  I'm going to quit taking the nerve meds with tonight, I hardly noticed it when I quit the morning one, but I wonder if they could be part of the sleepies issue.  Anyway, I don't need it so why take it!?

I have been stitching some most every day on "Twisted"  and have added several "flowers" to the hexie top.  I spent some time tonight working on Kolby's stocking, the cataracts make cross stitch very tiring and headachy.  I've finished painting a small nightstand for the guest room and found some top curtains for over the sheers-have really cool tie backs for those!  I'll get them hung and the filets for the big chest  cut and installed tomorrow.  So I'm making slow progress on projects.

I purged books this past week as well.  I love books and love to read but storing them is a big issue.  I have a Kindle (although it's getting spotty about working so I'll probably need a new one soon) and I use it now for fiction only as I find it difficult to page back and forth if I want to see something again.  If you know ahead of time you can bookmark it and go back but I once looked forever for a rabbit quote in the Beatrix Potter biography-never did find it.  Anyway, the book shelves were stuffed so some books had to go!  I likely  won't miss them.

I guess the biggest news is that I was honored by the Jackson County Historical Society as their Volunteer of the Year for my work in the archives.  It's nice to be recognized (even if I really only type!)  Lovely dinner with good company.  Also I got to dress up!

It's cold tonight and I'm ready for sleep!  Maybe it won't be another 10 days!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

First Finish of 2014!

Finally, Scott's Rhombi:  A Penrose Tiling is finished!
I'm tired of looking at it!  I'm sure you are as well.  I needs to be run through the dryer with a damp towel again to get all the cat/dog/Gail hair off of it but I have no more stitches to take in it!!  I'm taking it to Quilt Guild on Monday and then sending it off to live in Scott's office in Columbia.  (His coo-workers will have something new to look at when they video-conference!)

Now on to Twisted.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Winter Blahs

We did not get feet of snow, like some folks. Nor did we get -45F temperatures (without wind chill) it has been cold enough and snowy enough that I have been in more than out for the past week.  Cabin fever beckons, even for Quinn!  It is to rain on Friday ( yep rain, not snow) which will make a muddy mess of everything and cause Quinn to need "hosing off" every night in the shower-she hates it.  But, she wants to sleep on my bed and muddy, messy dogs must stay on the floor!

I have taken down the Christmas decor and packed it away (the boxes have not made it to the attic yet but they have found an out of the way spot in the guest room.)  The house looks sad and bare-dang it I want my bedroom tree back at least!

Beyond that I have been reading quite a bit and stitching a little.  Little to no accomplishments around here.  Ah well, tomorrow is another day!  Now, I need to go put the clean sheets on my bed so I can crash in a little while and finish up the laundry.  Bye!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Winter Waiting

Waiting for snow again, 3-4 inches, to be followed by extreme cold and dangerous wind chills.  Ho-Hum.  It's January.  While my house is pretty warm, some areas are just chilly.  My office/studio is one of the worst, I think I might be getting out a space heater for a few days.  If all the predictions are true I'll be staying home for a few days!  Good sewing weather.

Rob came over and got all the boxes for Christmas directions out of the attic this morning so I'm beginning to take down the decorations.  I hate this time of year-the house just looks naked!  Then I'll need to change my blog photo!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Under the Needle.

I had such high hopes for this being a regular Friday feature!  Oh well, new year, fresh start!

Both of these projects are ongoing, though one should be finished soon-I hope.

This is Scott's Rhombi, a Penrose tiling.  I'm stitching the edge on by hand, all the angles and points created all sorts of issues with finishing it.  I'm using grograin ribbon stitched down on both sides with little tucks.  I'll stitch it down on the back with a 1/4" (or a bit more) of the ribbon showing on the front.  I think for it to lay flat it will need a row of machine stitching as well.  I'm nearly finished with the front,  would really love to have it finished by the next Guild meeting on the 13th.

A full view of my hexigon quilt.  This will be the center, I have a long way to go.  I just began making flowers with no idea how I would put them together.  Now, of course, I wish I'd not used yellow in the center but I won't be undoing any!

Here's a close up, if you look really hard you can see the needle!

Both of these projects have been English Paper Pieced and I may have found my favorite part of quilting!  I reserving judgement for a while.

I think I may have found that missing Mo-Jo!  Yesterday, I had the most productive day I've had in months!  A little house cleaning, a little cooking, a little sewing, and of course the exercises!  All in all a great day!

The University of Missouri-Columbia, my college alma mater's, football team at 11-2 earned a place in the Cotton Bowl (they took the East region of the Southeast Conference)!  Tonight's the game!  I really hope they win but whatever happens I'll be a proud Tiger!  Beth and Lucas are having a little party with the boys so Quinn and I will head down there to watch at least the first half!  Scott and Bri are going to the actual game-the lucky stiffs!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

A New Beginning!

Every year is a new beginning, a fresh start, the time to make choices that change your life.  So that is my plan for 2014.  A new beginning and finally making those choices that will change my life.  It's hard and confusing trying to decide between one thing and another because this time it isn't possible to have both.  Sometimes you can have both, sometimes not.

In that line of thinking, I'm going to re-think my choice of participating in Bonnie Hunter's Mystery.  I pulled fabrics, I bought the rulers, I'm in the Facebook group and now that I've seen the reveal I agree that it's a beautiful design. I know I could do it but the fact is I just don't want to.  Else I'd have cut some of the fabric I pulled!  I just do not want to start another quilt, at least not until I've finished more of the ones already begun.  To begin another quilt now, when quilting is not my passion and I have so many other things I want to try, just adds another layer of frustration.  So in a few minutes I'm going to put all that fabric up, store those rulers, and put the directions inside of the Bonnie Hunter book I own.  I won't need to think about it any longer and that will be a good thing!

After that I'll work on Scott's Rhombi--the edge from hell!