Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Day

Today has been Christmas Day, all day long. It came without decorations, lights or presents. It came without all that fuss, without the hustle & bustle. And I think I like it this way. I had a very nice prime rib dinner with my husband and father-in-law, and 2 friends. I really thought about the reason for this whole holiday season. Yes, the Baby Jesus got gifts from the Wise Men. Perhaps they weren't the most useful to a child, but it was what they offered. In the song, "The Little Drummer Boy", the young boy has no gift, but offers to play his drum for the child, and then proceeds to do his best.

The Grinch thought that by stealing away the trees, the lights, the gifts, and the food that Christmas in Whoville wouldn't come. Yet his heart realized that when it came without all those things, that maybe, just maybe, he couldn't stop it. So maybe, just maybe, it's okay to celebrate without presents, trees, and lights. Maybe like the Grinch, I've developed a taste of I can do Christmas without all the fuss.

Don't get me wrong, I love the songs, the trees, the lights. I even enjoy getting a well thought out gift. But you know what, I didn't get a whole bunch of presents this year. I got only a couple small, well thought out gifts. That means more to me than presents just to make sure everyone on a list got one. So, maybe, just maybe, my heart, like the Grinch's, has grown over the years.

So, Merry Christmas to all and blessings upon you the whole year long.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving Day

Today is Thanksgiving Day. Many will watch the Macy's Parade from New York and usher in the Holiday Season. Some will still be homeless and try to find a free meal somewhere. Many will either travel or have traveled to see their loved ones. Some will travel to a spot to get away from it all.

I will spend it with family and friends. It's a time to be thankful for all we have and all we can do. My husband and I still have jobs and can still pay our bills. Our health is good - even if we could both stand to lose a few pounds (which of us couldn't?).

I have a four day weekend and plan to get some things done around the house. Little things but still it's something. I have to be ready for work on Monday so that will mean laundry and making sure I have enough in the fridge for lunches. But that's okay - makes my life seem normal.

Happy Thanksgiving to all! May your day be Blessed.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

It's Official

Yep, it's official. I am no longer Worthy Matron of my Eastern Star chapter. Our new Worthy Matron was installed last night and I am thrilled with our choice. She is an awesome sister and will do a fantastic job. She has the privilege of presiding over our chapter for our 125th anniversary party.

Now I just have to get through the month of November with all the installations of new officers and I can kick back and relax. While I did take on a new job for my District, as Deputy Grand Matron, I can actually miss a meeting here and there. I will be able to take some quilt classes because I won't be planning a meeting. I might even get some of my UFOs finished. I still have my list going and will be whittling it away.

Today I am home and am doing the mundane things like laundry and putting out the recyclables and the trash. I'm not planning on any "big" things today. Just going to stay home and enjoy the quiet.

Am off to get a bit to eat and then start on those mundane things. Take care and enjoy your day.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

November is....

November is a month of craziness for me. I belong to Eastern Star and November is installation month. Suffice to say all my weekends have something in them. Then on top of that, I've agreed to be my district's 2014 Deputy Grand Matron. Yep, that makes me one busy lady. But since I enjoy it all, it's a fun hectic month.

In addition to all of my Eastern Star functions, I'm also doing the Quiltmaker 100 Blocks blog tour. Yep, there is to be released on November 19, Volume 8 of the Quiltmaker 100 Blocks. I have the first seven and I will have the 8th either as soon as I win it or as soon as I buy it. The blocks are amazing and the colors are fun. Any quilter knows you can change colors and make it look totally different.

I should be working on my quilting this month, but time just seems to get away from me. I guess I will work on it in December instead. One of my Yahoo groups has a "sewing time challenge" going. The object is to stitch or work on something crafty for a minimum of 15 minutes per day. Not much to it, right? Well, yes, there is. Some of us just don't get there. I was hoping to do at least 15 minutes this past week and didn't make it. Maybe I'll have better luck this week?

Well, I'm off to get ready for work. I need to work to support my quilting habit but working gets in the way of my quilting. Kind of a quandary there. Oh, well.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Boston Wins Series

Okay, I'll admit it up front - I'm a die hard Giants fan when it comes to baseball. And we all know how poorly my team did this year. So when it was bantered around that Giants fans should root for the Boston Red Sox, my first reaction was "You've got to be kidding!" However, what the heck!

Now baseball season is over for another year. No more until spring training and then I can hope that the Giants can pull themselves together and at least get into the playoffs next year. Dreaming? Maybe, but stranger things have happened.

I'm off to work on a couple of my small projects and then head to bed early.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Judged quilt at show

Okay, I've finally done it. I had one of my quilts judged at a quilt show. I thought I wouldn't get anything and I was way wrong. I actually got an Honorable Mention. Not bad for a first try out of the bucket. This quilt is one that I made as a "mystery" - I knew what colors of fabric I wanted, but the pattern was a mystery until it was put together. Now I'm going to have to improve my quilt making. The judge thought more of the quilting than my piecing. But that's okay. I knew it needed some help. I was told by my friends that I should enter it. I guess they knew better than me.

I'm not ready to share the pictures of the ribbon, but I will share pictures of the quilt top before it was quilted.
This will give you an idea of the pattern. It is a king size quilt and I love the colors in it. The starting instructions were to buy 3 fabrics - a light, a medium, and a dark. The quilt shop where I bought the fabric and got the pattern parts from, thought I was crazy and that the fabrics did not go together. Personally, I figured that was a matter of opinion and used them anyway.

Once I took it back to the shop, the owner was of a different opinion. Some of the others were just as pretty, but I can't show them as I don't have permission from their owners. While mine was one of 6-8 that were king size, some made lap size and others made table runners.
I hope to share some of my other quilts before long, but since this was a work in progress form 2005, it might be a while before you see another big one. The shop it came out of is long closed. The finished quilt has the dark purple for the binding.

Off to work on some project or maybe read for a bit.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

More quilt finishes

Yep! I'm please to share more quilt finishes. These next four are small, only 12" x 14", but they are DONE! I really like the little ones as they are supposed to be easy - I don't always get them done as quickly as they could be done because I'm easily sidetracked. Okay, here's the first one.
This is called "Toadly Spellbound" and is a pattern by Patch Ability. It's a fun little one and a play on words if you will. The poor toad is spellbound and ready to throw itself into the witch's cauldron. Silly toad!

The next one is another Patch Ability pattern and is called "Mama Bird". Not that the eggs have hatched yet. I like the way this one turned out. The colors and the black button for the eye just made it right for me.

Now on to the "Winter Sled Ride". It, too, is a Patch Ability Pattern. This one is from the 2012 BOM (Banner Of the Month) from the pattern company. They are such fun. This one was supposed to have the snowflakes "painted" on it, but I chose to use buttons that I had found instead. It is a cooling picture and while I'd love to have some of it right now, it won't happen. We're in a summer heat wave and outside it's already about 100 degrees.

My fourth Patch Ability is a pattern Called "Snowflake Catcher". Again, it looks cold which means nothing in the summer hear. Doesn't cool me off one little bit.

My final finish will have to wait until the next posting. I don't have a decent picture of it yet and I don't want to show it until I can get one. It's one that I will be putting in my quilt guild show in September. I'm thinking of maybe waiting to put in on the blog until then. Hope you enjoy these little ones. Till later, stay cool and have fun.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father's Day

To my dad - You may be gone from this earth, but you still live on in my heart. I remember the fun, the laughter, the trips, and even the times when you disciplined me for "mouthing off". They are all now good memories and I want you to know, I still miss you. I think of you, I talk to you. You don't physically answer me, but your training and rules that I grew up with do give me the answers I need to get by.

To all dads everywhere - may your day be blessed with love and laughter of your family. May you know the blessings of children.

To children everywhere - no matter your age. Remember the good times with your father and sent him blessings of the day.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Oddball things

Well, that laundry had to wait until today. We had a power outage yesterday which negated that chore. However, today it's all done. Course the power outage also created a new problem - the router for our household wireless internet died. Must have been the power surges of the on again off again on again off again on again. Course between the last off again and the on again was a time frame of almost 2 hours.

Have to say that really got the house very stuffy. No ceiling fans running to keep the air moving. Man, what a difference! The temperature outside did break the 100 degree mark here. Got up to 101 according to our outside thermometer. I can only hope it was a few degrees high, bur since it came close again today, maybe not.

I got my blocks for quilt guild done this morning. They were super simple and I get to keep the pattern in case I want to make more. Will have to see if I can win them all and get the directions for making the quilt top. Or maybe, since I'm a board member, I can get a copy anyway. Will have to ask!

I'm trying to stay cool, but it's hard when outside is so warm. I've got the ceiling fans going and I'm guzzling liquids - no, it's not all water. Have to have bit of variety - so part of it's tea.

Off to work on some stuff.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Already June

What the heck happened to May? Somehow I think I missed a good portion of it. Oh, well.

Since I last wrote, we've had a major plumbing problem - now fixed, thank you very much. The car "died" - actually it was a combination of the battery and the battery cable being way corroded. Also fixed now.

My girl friend's baby sister passed away from cancer induced pneumonia. Services are today. Not a happy day for her.

I finally got one of my older UFOs quilted and the binding on it waiting to be stitched down. Too warm today to turn the iron on to finish that step. Maybe tomorrow?

I have blocks to make for quilt guild. Sewing machine to clean and oil before quilt guild. I'm thinking I will be way busy today. Also have some laundry that needs to be done - I'm out of clean socks!

Well, I'm off to see what I can get done before the heat gets too bad. Yes, we are looking at the possibility of 100 today. I'm hoping it doesn't make it!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Quilting fun

Yes! I'm having some quilting fun this week. I'm playing on the Quilty Pleasures blog and doing a blog hop. I picked up this button
And I'm playing on their blog to get to all the different places. I've done it for the last several issues and managed to "win" a copy of the magazine a couple different times. Once I scored a bit of fabric too!  You can't win if you don't play.

So tag along by going to Quilty Pleasures blog - it's rather simple.

I have the first 6 volumes of the Quiltmaker's 100 blocks and I plan to have the rest that follow. They get more fun and grab my attention more as we go along.

Good luck!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

2 more finishes

Yes, it's true! I've been a bit lax in finishing my quilt projects. However I do have a couple that I finished this month. They are small and somewhat related. They are both Patch Ability patterns from 2012's BOM (block of the month) that I purchased the patterns for, raided my fabric stash to make, and now present for your enjoyment.
This one to the right is "Liberty" and she represents the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave. Old Glory waves proudly to show that we believe in our military and support them. We pray for them and when we can, we say thank you to them. I hope you do too. She had to have a background of bright blue to show her to her best. The stars around the edge represent the active duty military. Long may she wave!

The beautiful Canadian Maple Leaf flag is representative of our neighbor to the north. She waves "hello" to both us and our Old Glory. I made this one to be a companion piece - I have no family there and no true ties to Canada. I just love the parts of her countryside that I have been privileged to see. I have friends who have friends there and so I have chosen to be friendly with Canada in their honor.

I am working on several more small quilts and hope to have them ready to show by the end of May or before. I have several that I want to do. I'm trying to make these small ones by using fabric I already have in the house. Bit of a challenge for some as I don't have the vast array of colors that I should. I'm not a big fan of reds, oranges, and yellows. So to make these two, I did have to buy some fabric. The blues, the star fabric, the white, and the gray I had.

I'd best get back to working on my quilts so I have something for show and tell later. Hope you all have wonderful days.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

April is here!

Yes, April is here. It's my birthday month along with a few family & friends who share the month with me.

I celebrated by re-doing the stuff on my Kindle. I goofed one day and reset the thing to factory specs. That was a heck of a shock to realize that could be done with such an accidental touch. Well, I now know I can reset it without too much headache. Me and the games are just starting over to get the high scores.

I recently put out an Eastern Star Chapter newsletter. I didn't think it would take that long, but it certainly did. Maybe because I had to insert our roster as well? Who knows. Won't have to do another one for a while.

I've been working on small quilts and getting more of my UFOs done. No pictures yet, but soon. Have to remember to take the pictures on a sunny day so I don't have to use the flash on my camera.

My husband and a couple of our friends went into the mountains today to open our cabin up. Said there was very little snow up there - less than what we normally see Memorial Day weekend. Guess that means we'll be on water rationing this year.

Well, I'm off to email a friend the address for my blog and then get some dinner.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Miserable, miserable

Misery! Yep, I finally caught whatever it is that's going around. I"m so miserable that I can't decide if I want to sneeze, blow, or cough. Then there's the I need a drink in there somewhere to stay hydrated. I'm coughing so bad at times I can hardly catch my breath. I believe it's time to see the dr. That will be on tomorrow's list as today is Sunday. Course I might not get in right away, so it might be longer than that. But I will call in the morning.

Meantime, in between all this misery, I've been resting. Yep, taking it easy and not doing a whole lot. I managed to get two loads of laundry through the washer & the dryer today. One load is still sitting on the bed waiting to be folded. Have to get up some energy to do that and energy seems to be missing today. Does misery love company? I can honestly say - not today! Would hate to give this to anyone else. I very rarely call in sick to work, but I think this is going to one of those rare times.

Okay, enough complaining! I am hopeful to enjoy the nice weather later this week. Last weekend I got two of my unfinished quilt tops finished. Now all I need to do is find the backing and get them sandwiched. I also have some little ones that are already sandwiched that need to be quilted and bound. Maybe I can work on them this next week? We'll see how the week goes. Wish me luck - I'm not sure yet how I want to quilt them which is why they have been sitting waiting patiently for almost a month.

Off to take a short nap!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Beauthful day

Okay, the weather is gorgeous outside here - warm enough to be pleasant and a breeze to keep it that way. We, my husband & I, picked the oranges off their tree and then picked the lemons off their tree. We didn't lose too many of either due to the frost we had last month.

I took advantage of the weather outside today to sandwich 6 of my small quilts. Don't like the smell of the spray baste inside the house and neither does hubby. These little ones have been patiently waiting for either a nice day or my small quilt group to meet. Since we cancelled our small group for this month, I just had to take advantage of the beautiful weather. The breeze made it a bit of a challenge to work but I persevered and triumphed! Feels great!

I worked yesterday on a couple of more small projects, getting them ready for handwork. I'm bound and determined to get things done and when I'm in the mood to work on them is the time to make sure I work on them. People say I can do that any old time - well, nope - have to be in the mood. This weekend has been and still is a mood - means I will get more done yet today.

Have to get one more load of laundry done before too long. Might do that before dinner, depends on how I feel - but it will get done today.

I'm off to do more work on projects. Hope to have some pictures before long.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

February already!?!

Good grief! We are one third done with February and I'm still thinking January. Egads!

Well, I've finished one more of my UFO quilts off my list from 2010. Yes, I know, it's a bit late, but it's finished. I haven't had time to take a picture yet, but will try this next week to do that. I was working on a quilting project today and promptly ironed the wrong side of the fusible stuff to my iron! Yes, I was very unhappy. Had to let the iron cool down before I could clean it.

Weather has been good lately. We could use some more rain, but we don't seem to have any in the near future. We've had a north wind the last few days which has made it seem a lot colder than it actually is. Maybe it will go away and the rain will come for a visit?

I got a new Kindle Fire HD for Christmas and have been having a blast with it. I've got Angry Birds on it and I'm learning to hate those blasted grinning pigs. Yes, it's only a game, but they have a way of grinning that gets to me. It's like they are saying "nanner, nanner, you missed me". I have also got some books on it and can check my email. Course the keyboard, such as it is, is a bit small. Which as anyone who has ever used a Kindle for email will tell you - makes one prone to spelling mistakes. The other bad thing is that the Kindle has a tendency to tell me I don't know how to spell my own name and tries to correct me every time. I finally added me to the "dictionary".

Well, I'm off to see what there is for dinner and get things going. Then I'm going to relax for a while before bedtime. Have to work tomorrow and it's going to be a long week since we are short a couple of people.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

2013 is here

Okay, seems that the Mayan calendar started a new cycle since we are all still here. Or is it that we are all in the same heaven? The end of the world didn't happen this time. Guess we wait some more. Seems like this is a lot like the scene from Fiddler on the Roof where they are moving again because they've been asked by the government to leave. Maybe they are on the right track?

Anyway, 2012 was a good year for the most part. I finished 3/4 of my UFO Challenge list for quilt guild. I'm healthy and doing well. I was installed as Worthy Matron of my Eastern Star Chapter in November. I have a roof over my head and enough to eat. I guess I have enough.

What will 2013 bring? I have hopes, dreams and wishes for this new year. My hopes are to stay healthy and employed. My dreams are to enjoy life to the fullest to the best of my ability. My wishes are that all I know have the same good health and a steady job. What are you thinking about the new year of 2013. I hope to use the number 13 to my advantage. I have good luck with that number. It's a good number - contrary to the superstitious jargon.

I wish for you a life full of happiness, good dreams, fun & enjoyment in all things, and above all a strong faith to make it through whatever trials are thrown your way. Maybe my next entry will include a completed quilt. Maybe it will include a picture of something I've seen. Maybe it will tell of a trip I've gone on. You will need to tune in to find out what pops up.

Until later, my friends!