Friday, January 30, 2009

Mark's Blog

Well today I am just flabbergasted. Check
this out. Censorship is alive and well here in the US, and it doesn't makes sense. Of course I still haven't seen this issue of the magazine, because somehow my subscription is screwed up and I have to call the customer service department and ask them to find my issue EVERY time.

I guess this is just yet another thing to add to me "Why I hate Joann Fabrics" List.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

UFOS completed

Here is the finished quilt from my guild's Solids Challenge. The animal print is the back and I had just had to share it because it is SO fun and cute (it came from Ikea, if anyone is ready to run out and buy some!). I ended up putting a red binding on the quilt because it looked good with the backing (and I had enough red, lime was my first choice, but I didn't have enough yardage of lime).

I also finished two UFOs that have been hanging around my house for way too long. The Tossed Salad Quilt was actually quilted in December of 2007 and has been sitting here in my 'to bind' pile since then. It makes no sense that it took me so long to do the binding, but I finally got it done! This quilt went to my guild's Community Service project.

This purple crumb quilt also has been quilted and waiting for binding for much too long (since January 2008!). This one had a reason for waiting so long: I couldn't find the binding fabric, but the other day it turned up so I quickly finished it before the binding had another chance to escape underneath a pile of stuff! This one also went to my guild's Community Service project. Unfortunately, I can't even see a dent in the UFO piles yet.

Weekend Update

Again, I spent a lot of time last weekend stitching.

I started Gail's Block of the Month. I still haven't chosen the fabrics that will frame the blocks, so far I haven't found anything in my stash that I like for it and I'm avoiding the quilt shops until the Vermont Shop Hop in March.

I made more progress on Bea's Quilters Blessings Blocks. I now have 13 of the 16 complete. I finished this one on Sunday, and I have started #14. I like these well enough, but I kind of wish I had done them in multicolors rather than all one color. I do intend to do Bea's new Fairytale block set, but first I need to finish this set!

Finally, I gave in and started this block of the month by Willowberry Designs. So far I haven't seen a lot of pictures of these around, but I couldn't resist because it was so sweet. I do have to say that I'm never happy with my lazy daisy stitches, but I sure got lots of practice on them with this block! LOL. They are looking better now!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Guild Holiday Party

Tonight my guild had our annual Holiday Party. Yes, we were late! On purpose! A few years ago, attendance at our Holiday Party was dwindling. Phone calls were made to all members by the president as part of a survey and one of the questions asked was "Do you have any suggestions of how to improve attendance at our Holiday party?" (Normally we held it the first week of December). Apparently I was one of many who said that we are just too busy then. So for the last three years or so, we've had our holiday party at the end of January. We've done away with the big meal part of the potluck dinner and now we just do the appetizers and the deserts!

Instead of doing a grab bag, we have a little challenge and exchange. This year we were to make a bookmark. This is the one I made from a pattern from Anni Downs

The bookmark that I received was this one made by Janet R. It is very cute and I am going to stick it in my newest book (New Moon, the second book in the Twilight Series) tonight! I was very impressed with all the creative bookmarks I saw tonight, there were no two that were anything alike!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


I've been working on my stitchery projects a lot lately. DH and I have been spending a lot of time watching tv series and movies, and I hate to just sit and watch...I get way too restless, so stitching keeps my hands busy while I watch. I'm hoping that Netflix will be sending Jonathan Creek Season 3 to me today.

Currently I'm trying to catch up/finish Lynette Anderson's Noah's Ark project and Bea's Quilters Blessings project. I've got about 3 more blocks to do on Bea's Project and 5 blocks to go on Lynettes. I'm plugging away and soon they will be done. Since Christmas I've done these blocks for Bea's project, and another one nearly finished. I need to get going on these because I'm anxious to start a few new ones! LOL. But without stressing myself out over them.


As I mentioned last time, I've been working on this and that as the mood strikes me. I decided that this year I'm going to do what I want, when I want and I'm going to try not to stress myself out with too many obligations. LOL. I say that every year.
Speaking of that, I signed up for a Christmas in July Swap hosted by Karen, check it out if you might be interested.

I've got most of a top completed, it just needs borders, which I have picked out. This is theStreak of Sunshine pattern from Quiltville.

This bag was part of my Aunt Mia's Christmas/Birthday gift (but it was not done in time, oh well). She was happy with it, and so was I. The pattern is from MayBritt . I've made this bag several times already, and I'm sure that I will make it several more times.

The next thing I've been working on is a pattern called Cheese and Crackers by Terry Atkinson. I've got the blocks done and the borders are finished, I just need to sew all the sections together. At least a year ago, I cut all the parts for this quilt and made a little kit. When I was recently looking for something to sew without doing a lot of prep work, I just grabbed the bag and started sewing. The picture here is just a section of the border, a sneak peek.

Finally, this is the top for my guild's All Solids Challenge, which is due next week. Since I took this picture, I totally finished this quilt, but I never got a picture of the finished product, so for today you will only get to see the top. I had planned to donate this to the guild's community service project, but everyone in my house has decided that we should keep it for ourselves. (I guess this means I better hurry up and finish that Streak of Sunshine Quilt to donate that one instead!).

No wonder nobody returns their carts to the corral

It snowed on Sunday. Today is Wednesday, they managed to do a great job clearing the parking lot, but if they expect me to return the cart to the cart corral, I have to be able to actually push the cart INTO it. Can't do that with 4" of frozen snow there. Doesn't the management THINK?

Friday, January 16, 2009

Back to sewing!

I have been sewing this week, finally after a much too long hiatus. I knitted myself a scarf with some yarn that the children bought me for Christmas. I've been working on some stitchery blocks for Bea's Block of the Month (three more to go, and then I am finished!), I made a top for my guilds all solids challenge (due in 10 days), I made a donation quilt top from the Quiltville Website, I started another top. I put the binding on a top that has been quilted and awaiting binding for months and months. As soon as I find my camera, I can get some pictures and post them. Tonight I plan to quilt my solids top.

SSCS Thanks!

Once again, I'm a bad, bad blogger. Ten lashes with a wet noodle for me, as my Mother would say.

I need to publicly thank Noemia for the wonderful Christmas gifts that I received in the SSCS. Noemia is in Portugal, and she sent me these lovely gifts: The blue table runner is made with snowflakes appliqued onto a really neat printed fabric. This looks great on my dining room table, and I can leave it there until it is time to put the Easter decorations out! There is a really sweet drawstring fabric bag with a buttonhole stitched applique on it, definitely perfect to add to my Christmas decor next year. Also a nice red runner for on an end table. A cute little doll that my daughter has on her shelf in her room, a cross stitch kit, chocolates (which didn't last long), tea, ribbon and marking pencils. This is all greatly appreciated and well-liked! Thanks so much, Noemia!

Oh, and since I never posted about it before, I'll show what I sent to Lyn in Australia: The bag is the Miranda Bag by Lazy Girl Designs. The pincushion is the armchair pincushion from Helen that was one of the patterns in the Stitcher's Angel Swap. I also included Pez candies, laces and buttons.

It is extremely cold her today. Last night it was about 10 degrees below zero (farenheit) That is -23 celcius for those of you outside the US. No problems with the pipes this time (Thank goodness)!

Friday, January 02, 2009

Hoping 2009 will begin better than 2008 ended! A long tale of plumbing woes.

I know that with my last post, I promised to blog more often. I had NO idea what the last few weeks of December would have in store for me. Lets just say that I am GLAD that the last few weeks are finshed and I hope that things calm down a bit now!

On December 10th I went to Vermont with Thing One and Thing Two, planning to spend a nice relaxing weekend before coming home to finish Christmas preparations. But it was not to be. No.... Vermont, along with parts of upstate NY, and all of NH, ME and lots of MA was his with a very severe ice storm. Our power at our Vermont house went out at 1:00 Am on Friday, because there was so much ice. We lost numerous trees on our property, the tops of dozens snapped off due to the weight of the heavy ice coating. Our power was not restored until the following Tuesday afternoon. It was a bad scene... thank goodness we had installed a LP burning fireplace that does not re1quire electricity a couple of years ago. That was our only heat source for those 5 days. No electricity means no heat source beyond the gas fireplace, it also means no cooking, and worst of all no running water. One the power was back on, I figured that we'd have clear sailing until the holidays. I was wrong.

On the 20/21 we had another snowstorm that made things pretty dicey for a while. It wasn't THAT bad though. We took the kids to our normal Breakfast with Santa at the Elks Club. The next day it was bitterly cold, so I went back to Vermont to check on things again. Sigh. The power had been out again, but not for too long. However the Rinnai heater in the bedrroom didnt' come back on when the power was restored. I went in the bathroom and found ICE in the toilet. Lovely. By the time I got heat going and things were thawed out, there was water pouring out of the light fixture in the bathroom ceiling. Thankfully I had the sense to turn off the well pump. So we had burst pipes and no water. On December 23rd. Two days before Christmas. And we were having company on Christmas Day. Now between the looming holiday and the huge ice storm less than two weeks earlier, what were my chances of finding a plumber? That night, I was the only one there and I spent WAY more time climbing around the crawl space looking for water shut off valves than I even want to think about (BTW, there is only ONE main water shut off valve for the whole house).

So my brother-in-law came on Christmas Eve to get our water running again. I cancelled the company for Christmas Day and told them that we would reschedule a couple days later. DH, BIL and I were up Christmas Eve until 4 am Christmas Day fixing the pipes. Three breaks in one line and one break in another line. And we got some shutoff valves installed so that we can at least turn off the water in the master bath (which is more susceptible to freezing).

Christmas Day came and all was well. (Separate post later about Christmas!), and then the company came on Friday instead of Christmas Day. Friday night after they left, we discovered a leak in one of the newly-repaired pipes. Apparently someone didn't solder the joint as much as they should have. So again, no hot water to the shower in that bathroom. Sigh. Dh capped that line so that the rest of the water works. We'll fix it later in the week. Fine, I'll shower in the kids bathroom.

Fast forward to New Years Day. Again, it is COLD. Five below again. We have ice in the toilet again. Thankfully DH was on top of things and got heat into the right place to melt things before we had more pipes bursting. We spent all day yesterday and half of last night wrapping pipes and adding extra insulation into vulnerable areas. I'm still waiting for that hot water line to be fixed.

The next time the temperature is going to be below zero, for sure you'll find me in Vermont babysitting the pipes in the master bath. Hopefully the new insulation and pipe wraps will help.