Friday, February 29, 2008

Two more for the NICU

I've had these pictures on my camera for a while, but never got around to posting them. These two quilts were among the ones I dropped off at Quilt Guild the other night for the NICU at UConn Health Center. The little yellow one was made with a few orphan blocks that were given to me by a friend. The brown/pink vintage looking one was made with some fabrics squares that I won in a raffle at guild a while back. I also included a few more hats in the bag as well.

Sewing, but not quilting

Today I have been sewing, but I am not doing a quilty project. I'm doing some dreaded garment sewing. Dance recital portraits are being taken on Sunday, and I am charged with making two vests for DH's dances. It is hard to believe that the situations I get myself into by volunteering, but here we go again!

The studio purchases the girls and women's costumes from several very lovely suppliers that make horrendously expensive costumes which look fabulous on stage, but when you look at the workmanship up close, you might be appaled. Well, that is if you know anything at all about sewing. For the 99.9% of the studio Moms, they think it is all wonderful. I look at the costumes and go, "Oh my, I paid $70 for THIS? there is a hold in the seam" or whatever... Anyway, there are a few boys that dance in the studio, and about 3 men. My DH and Thing Two are among the men and boys. When it comes to costume time, the men and boys are often kind of left out and end up being told "Wear black pants and a black shirt" or something like that.

This year, Thing Two's class has two boys in it, and they did purchase actual costumes fo the two boys: they are Knights in Shining Armor...this is going to be a great Halloween costume next year. DH's costumes present another issue. For Jazz, they are doing Rock Arond the Clock and the ladies are wearing poodle skirts. No problem: DH will wear a white t-shirt, jeans and his leather coat. For Jazz, the ladies have a red sparkly top wit black pants. The studio ordered a red vest for DH. Unfortunately, it was NOT sparkly, and looked like Mr Roger's sweater vest. Even worse, it didn't fit. DH is a big guy, and the costume houses just DON'T do XXL. So I have to make a vest and bowtie for DH to wear for that costume. DH and THing One are doing a Duet (they are tap dancing to Grim Grinning Ghosts, the theme from the Haunted Mansion at Disney World). Thing One's costume is black and orange. So I need to come up with something fo DH to wear for that, too.

So today I have been making vests. At the moment, my quilting room is covered with orange glitter. No matter: the orange vest is done. I just have to sew the buttons on it, then I need to make the bowtie (maybe, if I have time). Sure, the buttonholes are a little crooked, but noone in the audience will ever notice. Even better, this costume ended up costing less than $10 for the vest. Add his black pants and black shirt, and he's all set. I am thrilled now because I wasn't too happy about the color of the fabric, but looking at the finished vest next to part of Thing One's costume (in the picture) it matches better than I could have ever imagined.

Now I need to go do the red vest. At least I have until Sunday!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Goodbye, Friend

This is Groo, and last night, she died sitting here next to me. She was born on April 22, 1994, and died on February 27, 2008. DH and I knew that something was wrong around midnight, when she started crying in a distressed manner. She was walking a little strangley, and her breathing was rather rapid. She laid down on the floor next to me and appeared to have trouble breathing. About 30 minutes later, she was gone.

In case anyone is wondering about her name, she is named after a favorite comic book character.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Finally better

Thanks to everyone who sent well wishes for my sick children! This past week certainly was a miserable one around here: not only were both children ill, but so was I. I don't get sick that often, but when I do, oh boy! My poor DH had all three of us to take care of for about four days, and thank goodness he was well enough to step up and deal with things because I sure wasn't! Finally today I am feelin more normal, though I am still quite congested and coughing a lot.

Yesterday, Thing One had her tooth extracted, and she was a real trooper about it. Almost no complaints of pain or anything, though she did sleep on the couch for a few hours yesterday afternoon (which she NEVER does).

Hopefully now I can dig my way out from the mountain of laundry, mail, dirty dishes and assorted other stuff that has piled up over the last week and return to normalcy very soon!

I DID manage to do a bit of sewing early last week before I ended up sick. I made my February bag for the British Quilt List on Yahoo. I did change it up a little bit, and I am very pleased with my bag. The changes I made: I pieced the body of the bag instead of making it all one fabric, I made the handles MUCH longer that the pattern called for (I cut them 40" instead of like 16") because handles that I too short for me to carry over my shoulder drive me crazy, I fused a heart on the front of the bag (the pattern called for dimensional hearts on the bag) and instead of putting batting in the handles, I covered some nylon webbing with the bag fabric.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Sick Children

Sigh. Nothing quilty or otherwise productive going on here. Thing One has been under the weather since Sunday: Sore throat, laryngitis (am I evil for thinking that her inability to talk is a GOOD thing??), fever. This morning, I was woken up to Thing Two yelling "I throwed up in my bed". Great. Now he has a fever and yukkiness too.
And did I mention that Thing One has an appointment with the Oral Surgeon today? The 'it took almost two weeks to get an emergency consult even though she has an abcess' appintment? I can't cancel it or her misery will be prolonged who knows how much longer.
Isn't life great??

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Race Day

Today is the Daytona 500. In my house, this is a day nearly equivalent to Christmas in the amount of anticipation that builds up beforehand. Then tension has been building, the Sirius radio has been on nonstop during speedweeks, the cars have been analyzed, and today is the day! My husband is in his glory. I need to run to the store and buy the appropriate race day food (Roast beef is the Daytona 500 tradition here) and then I'm going to go into the sewing room and hide.

I do admit I love to watch the races, too. But not all the radio stuff, prerace shows, hours of analysis, etc. And now it is just too hard to watch with the kids bouncing around here too. Nah, today I'll go finish cleaning the mess in the sewing room. I've got a new set of shelves to assemble, more organizing to do and that vest for the dance recital is hanging over me...picture day is in two weeks and the vests need to be finished by then.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

One Word

Since I've got no quiting content to share, I thought I'd play along with this that has been popping up all over blogland:

One Word...

(It is not as easy as it looks)

1. Where is your cell phone? Counter
2. Your significant other? grumpy
3. Your hair? uncooperative
4. Your mother? cool
5. Your father? silly
6. Your favorite thing? Family
7. Your dream last night? forgettable
8. Your favorite drink? coffee
9. Your dream/goal? organization
10. The room you’re in? dining
11. Your ex? dunno
12. Your fear? tardiness
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? vacation
14. Where were you last night? Home
15. What you’re not? patient
16. Muffins? blueberry
17. One of your wish list items? decluttering
18. Where you grew up? connecticut
19. The last thing you did? dinner
20. What are you wearing? Sweats
21. Your TV? loud
22. Your pet? sneezing
23. Your computer? annoying
24. Your life? happy
25. Your mood? aggravated
26. Missing someone? Hazel
27 Your car? messy
28. Something you’re not wearing? Shoes
29. Favorite Store? Target
30. Your summer? relaxing
31. Like someone? Hubby
32. Your favorite color? Purple
33. When is the last time you laughed? Today
34. Last time you cried? Friday

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

2 more finishes

Here are two of the things I completed over the weekend. I'll share the rest tomorrow.

The little table topper is made of some Fossil Ferns scraps that I had leftover after I made my Duck and Ducklings Quilt back in 2000 or 2001. This measures about 20"X30". Maybe someone can remind me of when that was...I did the Duck and Ducklings as part of the One Day Quilt Frenzy group, and Billie Laude brought them on Simply Quilts for an episode that she did about quilting on the internet. Hmmm...the big Duck and Ducklings quilt is still a top. Maybe I should dig that out soon. Were any of you bloggers involved in the One Day Quilt Frenzy group (Judy L, I know you were in that group, but who else?).

This is the Jingle Jolly Table Runner, which I made as the January project for the Quilted Table goup. I used a charm pack of the Country Lanes fabric line from RJR, the red sashing and binding are also from that line, and the white fabric with the cherries is from my shopping trip last week. I'm very happy with how this turned out. I do think I'll use this pattern again.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

7 Things abut me

So I've been tagged twice, and I am supposed to tell seven things about myself. Apparently, these are the rules:
1. Once you are tagged, link back to the person who tagged you.
2. Post THE RULES on your blog.
3. Post 7 weird or random facts about yourself on your blog.
4. Tag 7 people and link to them.
5. Comment on their blog to let them know they have been tagged.

As usual, I'm not going to follow the rules! I'm jsut going to post my 7 things, and leave it at that :-)

Here goes:

1. During my Junior Year of High School, I was a Rotary Exchange Student in Quito, Ecuador. I lived with two different host families, and I attended Colegio de La Inmaculada, a Catholic prek-12 all girls school. I celebrated myt 16th birthday while I was there.

2. I always wear socks. I HATE being barefoot or wearing shoes without socks. I even wear socks in the heat of summer and at night while I sleep. I often joke around that if I could find a way to comfortably wear socks while swimming or showering, I would. My children on the other hand both hate socks.

3. I eat scrambled eggs or fried eggs with ketchup on them.

4. I have two younger brothers.

5. Some of the jobs I've had: working at my parent;s flower shop, cashier at the grocery store, working in a fabric store, substitute teacher, head teacher of a before/after school program, teller supervisor in a bank, work at 7Eleven.

6. My favorite movie of all time is The Princess Bride.

7. 30 years ago last week, (when I was in 5th grade) I was hit by a pickup truck while crossing the street on my way to my piano lesson. There had been a HUGE blizzard a couple days before, and the huge snowbanks prevented the pickup truck from seeing me, and vice versa. My Dad saw the truck hit me in the rear view mirror. I hit my head on the hood ornament and sliced my forehead open and was unconsious for a couple of hours. A bunch of stitches, one night in the hospital for observation and a few days of recovering from all the bumps and bruises and I was fine. However, crossing the street still scares the hell out of me.

Goodies in the mail!

Look at the envelope of goodies that I received in the mail on Saturday! I won a giveaway on Anne's Blog! My first win on a blog contest! She sent these wonderful red/pink fat quarters, plus a postcard and a pin that she made! Thank you much, Ann!

I did spend some time over the weekend working on the huge mess in my sewing area, and I also spent some time sewing. I'll share pictures of what I did over the weekend either later tonight, or tomorrow. Depending on when I get a chance to sit and do some hand stitching on the bindings. I'll probably have a chance to do that while I watch American Idol tonight.

We are expecting some snow, then a changeover to sleet and freezing rain then rain tonght and tomorrow. 3 inches of rain is expected, after a couple inches of snow. Yikes!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Since there has been no sewing happening here, just cleaning the sewing room/play room, I thought I'd share a picture from my collection.
This is a quilt that I made about 4 or 5 years ago as a guild challenge. We were to make a miniature quilt, no more than 15" square, and the blocks had to be proportional to a large quilt. In other words, not a 6" block with a border or something like that. I had made a mini Log Cabin in the past with 1/2" wide finished logs, and I knew that I never wanted to do THAT again (I could have had a full size quilt in the same amount of time), so I decided to go with something simple and not tiny. If I remember correctly, the 4 patch blocks are 1 1/2" square.
NASCAR Mania is ruling here in my house this weekend...the Winston Cup, Er, Nextel Cup, er, no SPRINT CUP series season starts this weekend, and everyone here will be glued to the TV all weekend (and for just about every weekend from now until just before Thanksgiving). Maybe cleaning the sewing room isn't such a bad option after all? :-)

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Messy Studio, Stash Enhancement, Bargello Progress

I've been running around like a mad woman this week. So much to do...and I want to sew, but everything is getting in the way.
Thing One has an abcessed tooth. The poor thing is in a lot of pain. We've got an appointment with the oral surgeon, but that is almost two weeks away. In the meantime, the orthodontist needs to see her too. Poor kid.
I just got the schedule for the rest of the dance studio calendar...We've got dance studio 'stuff' every weekend except for one between now and the recital (in Mid-April): rehersals for the Nutcracker Production, rehersals for the opening, rehersals for the moms and kids dance, formal portraits for the program book, etc. Sigh. I'm going to be very, very busy.
Let's see, what else. Oh, I need to sew two vests and bowties for DH's dance recital costumes. The guys always get left out in the costum department, and we have to figure out something that matches with the ladies. Since they know I sew, I usually make Hubby's. I need to do a red sparkly vest and an orangey one. So I had to get myself to the fabric store and buy the gross sparkly slippery fabric and a pattern. I got lucky and found some gross stuff the perfect color, and it was on sale for only $2.39 per yard! I can't buy the fabric for the orangey/copper vest yet because Thing One's costume for that dance isn't here yet, and I don't dare try to coordinate blindly. So while I was at the fabric store, I just HAD to look around. Here is what jumped in the cart and came home with me. All those pieces are 1 yard each. The brights are fat quarters, the roll of pinks are fat 8ths. I also got a yard of white Kona Cotton for an embroidery project as well as the red fabric for DH's vest, the black lining fabric for the vest, interfacing for the vest, the vest pattern and some thread

I did manage to clear the layers of projects off my design wall, and stick the scrappy bargello up there. Here is what it looks like at the moment. I might move the panels around in a different order, but this gives a pretty good idea of how it will look.

Finally, I have to say that if you don't see me for a day or two, send a serch party...I have to dive into cleaning the HUGE mess in the studio. In case you wonder how bad could it really be? Here is the cutting area. It might be a while before I finish.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Scrappy Bargello Progress

I've been stealing a few minutes here and there to sit at the sewing machine this morning. This is as far as I have gotten. I have 4 panels sewn into tubes, three of them waiting to be cut, one is cut and readyto be assembled.
I do think that I am going to add a bit to these panels to make them a bit longer. Right now, this is 58" long, and I think I'll make it 66". Then the quilt will be 48X66 before borders.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Bargello Bowl

Well, I'm taking a break to watch the game now (well, the commercials at leat, the rest of the time I seem to be just running food for the couch potatoes!). I have been doing some sewing on my Scrappy Bargello. Not as much as I had hoped, but it's something, at least.

So far I've got 20 sets of 4 strips pieced together. I'm trying to decide if this is actually going to be a Scrappy Bargello as intended, or if it is going to morph into a Scrappy Trips Around the World. I'm having a hard time convincing myself that I want to deal with cutting those long tubes. If I do the Scrappy Trips, I only have to cut thru a tube 6 squares long. Hmmmmmm....we'll just have to wait and see what happens.

In the meantime, I need to put my gourmet talents to work shoving frozen bagels pizzas into the oven.