Tuesday, December 30, 2008

What's Wrong with My House???

Let me tell you a little about my little house. We live in a modular home purchased in the mid 70's. It's small. . . only 24 x 40 -- it is not a double wide. As young kids, not thinking about how long we'd live in that house, we selected dark panelling for the main part of the house and pecan panelling for the bedrooms. Oh yes, we were being smart, we weren't going to have to paint drywall before we moved in. Well that dark panelling soon became tiresome, and in the late 80's we decided to try to paint. There is no panelling in my little house now!! It's all painted, and I love it. No more dull, dark panelling here!!! I make all my curtains - it's cheaper and I can choose the fabics I like. But there are a few problems. First of all, there's too much gravity in the kitchen/dining area. You can't imagine some of the things that fall off shelves for no apparent reason. People drop things with no explanation, they just fall. So we have decided that there's a serious gravity problem in that area. And the biggest problem is that there are several "black holes" in my little house. What is a "black hole" you ask. Well it's the term that I give to areas where things fall or are thrown and are never seen again!! The first "black hole" is under the kitchen table. When the grandkids drop food, they quickly say Grammy, my (whatever) just fell into the black hole. The only ones who really love the "black hole" under the table are the grandpuppies. And when they come over, that's the first place they hunt for food!!!

But the biggest and probably the worst "black hole" is at the end of my sewing table in the sewing room. When I'm done with a piece of fabric, I just throw it into the sewing black hole. Usually it's folded before it goes there, but lately . . . not so much. Since my sewing room looks like a serious windstorm blew through, I've decided to give it a good cleaning before starting 2009; and, I'm starting with the "black hole". Who knows what I may find there!!!! I've ordered a new sideboard to put into my room, and in moving the furniture around, I'm going to try and eliminate the "black hole". So far my plans are to put magazines on a bottom shelf since they are used so infrequently, and make room for some of the things I use more on shelves that are more accessible. We'll see how that goes, and I'll keep you posted!!! Have a Happy New Year!!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas is over

And what a great day it was. The kids showed up at different times, which eliminated a lot of the confusion we usually have. Rod and I opened our gifts along for the third time since we were married. And I was delighted to open EQ6 from him. I'm not sure I'm smart enough to learn to use it, however. I got a new reed diffuser and a new journal from Mary's family; a beautiful heart shaped locket with a diamond in the center from Kris's family; a new cut and press and a beautiful pair of earrings with pearls from the twins. Yesterday, Mary family came for the day, and we planned a trip to Disney for next December. Rod and I will celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary in November, and are planning this trip as a celebration. We've never been there, and Mary and family will join us as Mary is an old pro at planning Disney trips. Hopefully, Kris and family and the twins will also be able to join us.

The quilts all got finished in time, and everyone seemed pleased with theirs.

This is Jimmy's Steeler quilt, a simple 9-patch.

Mary's Pirate quilt is Pat Sloan's Arrr Matey pattern

Pam's quilt is Pat Sloan's Nick of Time pattern done in western fabrics.

Pat's quilt is a cowboy boot done with leftovers from a BOM that I was in.

George's quilt is a pattern named Anvil, which I got from Quilter's Cache.

Kristin's quilt is a sampler quilt that I pieced by hand and then attempted to machine quilt. Not bad for my first attempt, eh?

So, now I'm off to the train store with Rod, then to the meat market and then home to tackle the mess I've left in the sewing room. Merry Belated Christmas.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas eve eve

Wow, it's time to take a deep breath and get ready for the big day. I certainly haven't accomplished all that I wanted; but rather than regret, I'm going to be pleased with what I did get done. All six quilts for Christmas gifts are done. I finished sewing on the labels yesterday. (Mary will take pictures tonight, so look for them here soon) All the gifts are bought . . . however, none have been wrapped. Some of the cookies which the twins mixed up on Sunday are baked, but some are still in the frig waiting for the oven. (They may have to wait until after Christmas) The tree is up and decorated. The house inside and outside has been decorated. The menu for Christmas dinner has been planned, the roast ordered, but the other groceries still need to be purchased. Rod is on vacation tomorrow, but we have to go to work to get his paycheck, unless they give them out today. I enjoy just riding with him, and there's no real interruptions. Plus, it gets me out of the house and away from Mother for a while. She's becoming more annoying each day with her constant complaining, and has decided to go into a nursing home after the first of the year. I guess I'm seeing that with mixed emotions. I thought I had done so well, but now as I look at my list, there seems to be a negative for each positive, but I have made up my mind that this Christmas I'm not going to stress. So, I'm going out to the kitchen, getting my breakfast, and preparing for my little ones to arrive for the last day this week. Have a good one!!! and Merry Christmas!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Where have I been?

I have been sewing, sewing, sewing!!! First, thanks to Jennifer for nominating me for a Kreativ Blogger award, and I will respond when I have a little more time to think. Five of the six quilt tops are now complete, and two of the quilts are totally finished. Jimmy's Steeler quilt was the first done. I bought 5" precut squares from ebay, and put together nine-patches. (Photos to come soon) George's quilt is also done. He likes red and black, and I wanted something quick, simple and yet impressive. On Quilter's Cache (www.quilterscache.com) I found a pattern called Anvil. (Thanks to Mama Bear) Since it was basically Half-square triangles and Squares, it was quick. So, it's also completely finished. I have the tops for Mary and Kristin's finished and the backs are pieced, so now I have to layer them and get them quilted. I don't usually sandwich quilts, as most of you know, so I'm a little nervous about starting these. But as they say, nothing ventured -- nothing gained.

Pat Sloan has a way of putting binding on by machine (totally by machine) and although I've tried it in the past, I never really cared for it. But I have some of my greatest ideas in the middle of the night and this just came to me. I tried using my walking foot to apply the binding. The hole in my walking foot,(for lack of a better word) is wide enough for zigzag stitching, and so after pulling my binding to the front, I used decorative stitches on my sewing machine to sew down the binding. And, the mitred corners were always a problem for me because they didn't want to feed evenly. Well, this doofus finally figured out that I needed to fold the corners the opposite way from what I usually do, and voila!!! neat mitred corners. So, I have done that on both the quilts that are done, and it looks great. I may get these quilts done yet before Christmas. I'm hoping to get Mary and Kristin's done by the end of the weekend, and that just leaves the Twins' to go. Just for the record, these are just lap type quilts which measure about 45" x 58". Nothing earthshattering in size. Have a great quilty weekend.

Monday, December 1, 2008

What a Weekend!!!

It all started Wednesday evening when all the kids were here to help with Thanksgiving preparations. We ordered Pizza in and started to work. By the time everyone left, the pies were done, the dinner rolls were done, the eggs were boiled and into the beet juice (everyone argues about who gets to peel the eggs), and all I had to do before going to bed was to make the two kinds of dressing, and put the turkey in the oven. Thanksgiving morning, I peeled potatoes and did the cranberry casserole and the twins showed up early to fix the relish trays. I gave the girls their new aprons (Thanksgiving fabric on one side, and Christmas on the other) and they wore them for dinner. We had also gotten each one a Christmas music box and let each pick their choice. Even had some for the step grandkids who are 16 and 22. The three grandkids each got a nutcracker. I love to give presents on Thanksgiving because it shows them how thankful I am for their love and support all year long. For the guys I bought Rubik Electronic Cubes and believe me they are addicting. Everyone played with them after dinner and tried to beat each others high score.

I had Izzy on Friday because Kris and George both had to work. After they got home, we made a family trip to Kraynaks. http://www.kraynaks.com/ Check out the Santaland section for some photos. The kids just loved it, and doesn't Christmas make all of us kids again??? Even Great Grandma went along, and did some of her own Christmas shopping for the first time in a few years. It was just great!!

Saturday afternoon Rod and I went to the mall for a little Christmas shopping. I hadn't been there in a couple of years and it was gorgeous. People were kind and friendly, and I love shopping late afternoons. I also splurged on my first manicure -- see I do lead a sheltered life!! The guy cut them a little too short for my taste - they don't even come out past my fingertips. But they look nice and it made me feel a little special. We were supposed to go out to dinner, but I was tired and just wanted to go home. So my hubby, who spoils me greatly, stopped at the local butcher shop and bought Delmonico steaks and cooked dinner at home. Don't you just love a man who can cook??? More shopping yesterday AM. Rod bought me a new flat screen HD TV for my sewing room since the old, little TV had given up the ghost last week. See, I told you he spoils me!!!

But the biggest news of all is that I have 5 of the 6 quilt tops finished, and the last one is started. But the bad news is that they all still have to be quilted. Do you think I'll finish or will the quilter's elves have to show up one night to help???? Well, have a great week.