Thursday, December 26, 2013

Block 2 From Tula Pink's "City Sampler 100 Modern Blocks"

I sure hope I can keep this up! This is making me happier than I have been in a long time. I keep thinking that the blocks won't turn out good enough, but I am super pleased with both of them. And Hey! I only have 98 left to do!I love this book, I love Tula Pink, I love Debbie at A Quilter's Table for sharing her blocks and making me excited about the book and the blocks.
I plan on making these in order from 1 - 100 and I'm going to try to do one a day. The weekends will be the most difficult, because I get home from work later than the weekdays. So, maybe I will get five done a week, unless of course, some other project calls my name. I'm not going to worry over it, I'll just do what I can do and I know I will be happy with that!
I just have to say a big THANK YOU to Debbie for her enabling me!!! ;-)

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

I did it! I made my first "City Sampler" by Tula Pink block! I have been waiting for the time, the space and well, the time again!
Our Christmas is a little different this year. I am at my Dad's house, two thirds of my kids are at my house up the road a piece, my middle sister is doing her thing with her kids down the road a piece and later on today, we are going to my other sister's house for Christmas dinner. My two kids who are here went to do their favorite pastimes...surfing for one and the other horse back riding. (And yes, we have the weather for both today...weird, Christmas at 65 - 70 degrees!)
So, back to the Sampler block. I am so pleased with how it turned out. I am taking Tula's advice and making the blocks my own. I thought it was going to be so so, but it actually turned out pretty good. (If I do say so myself)
With out further ado...
I made this with some fabric I have around the house. (I couldn't find it for days...simply because after a year, I am still not moved in to my Dad's house.)

More on what is going on with that. Today is not the day for sad...

Monday, October 21, 2013

Doing Time

One day a long time ago I was bored. So I started searching aimlessly on Google. I found fractals. Please don't make me explain fractals. I kind of know how to explain them, but I am no scientist, so it would be hard. There is an explanation...
I really liked the fractal pictured above and thought, "Wouldn't it be fun to make a real clock like that?" Which lead to more searching on Google. I'll be darned if I didn't find the cross stitch chart for that very clock!
I ordered the chart and when it came in, I promptly made copies of the 100 or so pages that came with it and bought all the DMC threads I needed to stitch it up. (Approximately 5,000 miles worth of threads) Do you know that there are 1500 shades of Gray, not just 50? This clock has all 1500 shades I think, some are only used for one or two stitches.
I started the clock a long time ago, then things got switched around in my household and the clock got put on the back burner. I picked it up again, only to have to set it back down. That was over a year ago.
I have been thinking I should start working on it again lately. Today I went to my house in Pacifica and just happened to see the bag that holds the aida cloth, page one of the chart and all the DMC threads. I tossed it in my pile of take home stuff, which included a circular saw, a clip on lamp and some eye screws. What I didn't realize is that the rest of the chart and copies are somewhere else in that room I left behind with all my crafty things in it. I'm sure there is still plenty to do on page one. I know I will be back in Pacifica before I need page two.
Still not managing to get the quilt mojo back working. I just don't have the space to get stuff out to work on a quilt and leave the stuff out. I would have to unpack everything, then pack it all back in when I get done. I like leaving things out until the whole project is done. Someday, I will have that room...some day.
Until then, I am doing time...

Tuesday, August 13, 2013


Why do people always say, "Why did you get a dog?" "Who named you?" (to the dog) "You gotta watch these dogs, they are big." Oh duh, she's a German Shepherd. Have you ever seen a mini german shepherd?

I haven't and probably if I did I would have to have one, or ten. And would you question someone's choice for a name for their human baby? Really? Would you? (Well, okay, there are a few I question, Blanket, Apple, Rocket Jet Fuel or what ever that one is, but if those were dogs names, no one would question them.) Except my neighbor.

We'll call her Ms. KnowItAll, Ms. K. for short. I'm sure you all have one or two in your lives. This one is related to me too, (shirt tail type relative)

I try to be nice. If I feel I can't be nice, I make excuses for getting away quickly. Like, I need to go finish up dinner for Dad, or Dad's on his way to bed I need to make sure he is safely tucked in...all legitimate excuses. My poor Dad. He doesn't know how many times I have dropped his name.

The woman is nice enough. As long as you are talking about...lets say, the fact that my car is blue. She can't dispute it. She knows she can't change it. She knows that when I bought the car, it was not for the color alone. So there is no arguing or telling me how much better I could have done, or that I shouldn't have gone with the blue truck at all.

I came home from a walk with my daughter, because she is all understanding why I got this dog. She knows I have lots of experience with them, that I love these dogs above all others (except Tootsie), and I know, know how to train them.

Ms. KnowItAll just happened to be in the front yard messing with her dead truck. It just died. She came over to say hi and I told her dog Butch that I had a surprise for him to meet. Well the stupid, not well thought out, mean questions started.

Ms. K:"Why did you get a dog?"

Me: I wanted one. I wanted a German Shepherd.

Ms. K.: "What's her name?"

Me: "Willow"

Ms. K.: to the dog, in front of me, "Who named you?"

Me: "Me"

Ms. K.: "You gotta watch these dogs....(see first paragraph)

Me: getting a little annoyed, "I have trained three dogs before this. Two German Shepherds, and one Belgium Malinois. I suggest you look up the Belgium Malinois, because those are the dogs you have to watch...Oh hey, I need to go and check dinner, Dad's probably getting hungry."

We had been gathering each evening for walks. Her daughter, who is my nephews wife, my nephew, Ms. K. and I would take their three dogs and my Dad's two dogs and mine. I think I will not be joining them all for walks in the evenings. I will handle the four dogs on my own. I don't think I can be nice that long any more.

Why am I so defensive? Why are there so many of these people around me that feel they have to save me from myself. I am thinking that could be a tad late anyway, I am, after all 60 years old. I can and do think for myself.

I'm just feeling pushed upon for some reason. I took some cuter pictures of my new baby WILLOW...snicker, snicker.



This is what three walks in one day does to a puppy.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

She's home!

That is Tootsie on the left and my new baby, Willow on the right. I have waited a few weeks for this dog! I looked for a shepherd for months and finally found Willow close to where I live. My dream come true.
Now I just have a few months of nightmares to go through before she is comfortable and not crying for her mama and littermates. It will be worth it. Now if we can just not make my dad mad, we will be fine!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

New Baby!

But this one isn't the one I was talking about. The one I was talking about is due here around the 11th.
But a fellow blogger told me about Joann's having this baby on sale for 40% off. So even though Joann's was "slightly" out of my way, I HAD to go by and check it out. I came home with the Go! Baby, a cutting mat (6" x 12") and the 2 sizes of squares and triangle, die. I got all this for $9 under what the Go! Baby would have cost before taxes.
I could only get the picture of the die, but that's cool, I'm sure you all know what the Go! Baby looks like.
Or not...
Can't make my copy/paste thing work.
Oh well...I am stoked. I have a new toy.
I just can't wait for the other Baby to get here!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

I've been lax

I know I am not great at this blogging stuff lately. It's because things are not great and I don't want to constantly complain. Momma said if you don't have anything nice to say...shut up!

I do have something nice to say now and there will be more in the future.

My nice thing now is that there is a baby in my future!

That's all you get for now...

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

How About, Tuesday's Trials and Tribulations?

That is exactly what today felt like.

I need some direction. I can get all kind of things accomplished. In my head. Physically, not so much. I know what I want to do, I know what should be done. I just don't want to . That includes my sewing room. I can't get my brain around it. I think it is because it IS so very overwhelming. I know, I know. Make little one inch bites out of it and take a bite at a time. Which bite goes first???

I played hooky from work Sunday. Twisted my ankle and stayed home with my foot elevated. I did manage to scrub the dickens out of the refrigerator, and thrown out some unidentifiable items. I am sure that they were food at one time. So I'm good on the fridge front. Freezer goes next week.

Yesterday my oldest daughter and I went out kayaking. It was a gift she gave me for Christmas. She got a good deal through Amazon and since I love to kayak, she did that for me. Then we went out to lunch. We shared  everything. Shrimp salad, Fish and Chips, and a beautiful slice of cheesecake with fresh blueberries on top. We were both stuffed. I can't imagine what would have happened if we hadn't shared. Oh yeah! The to die for appetizer...garlic deep fried artichoke hearts. O.M.G!!! My mouth is watering now. Next time I will remember pictures.

I joined WeightWatchers again last week. Lost 2.4 pounds! Yea! And that was eating that cheesecake too! And fried foods! And no, I won't be doing that all the time. My goal is to become healthy, not skinny and fat fried! LOL!

I talked to my psychologist today. He is helping me get through the mire that is living with my Dad. I really need this guy in my life. He is helping me immensely. I confess stuff to him like...I pulled a wire in my Dad's truck so he couldn't drive. I immediately called my sister and told her because I felt so guilty being devious. She laughed and said she was going to tell my BIL. I am doing this for my Dad's safety ad the public's safety. Dad should not be driving, but doesn't feel the same as the rest of us. Dr. Scot told me to not worry about it. I still do, but I am sure after a few days of my affirmations I will get over it.

He also gives me tips on how to talk to a belligerent ninety year old. There are things I want to tell my Dad, but I don't want to hurt his feelings. Like: You have to wear your hearing aids for the rest of us! (Dad thinks we should just magically hear him) I don't want to hurt him by telling him what he needs to do. After all, he has gotten this far in life without my help. He will not admit that he is failing physically, maybe he doesn't want to face the inevitable. My telling him these things hurts, I am sure. What if I hurt his feelings and then he passes? I could not live with myself if that happened!

After I had my appointment with Dr. Scot, I went grocery shopping. I bought lots of fruits and vegetables. Yummy stuff. Strawberries that are to die for. I know. I ate a couple while I was cleaning them, and cantaloupe. Those will be my go to-s when I am craving something sweet. I am determined to lose the weight I need to and get in shape.

Some pics I had that make me happy. That is a surprise passion flower. LOVE them!

This is Peepers (red hen) and Dela (white hen) my girls..two eggs a day!
The rest of the day (It is now 3:45PM) will be laundry and some maybe list making for next weekend, so I know which one inch squares to start with on my overwhelming jobs.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Finally and Hopefully

I have been in this house with my Dad since October 28. Two weeks after he turned ninety. I am glad I am here, but the move and the living here has put the "me" on hold. I am not ungrateful.
My Dad is somewhat of a hoarder. Not bad, it really could be worse. I am not a "neat-nik" but I could do better. I think I am a tad lazy too, which does not help.
What I am getting at is that there is this lovely bright and airy yellow bedroom that sits (ahem) empty right next to my bedroom. Are you thinking what I am thinking? Quilters I know all think basically the same. We do what we can with what we have and then sometimes we go out and add to our stash. I am not worried about my stash. I have been faithfully adding to it since I got here. I am just not using it. I want to mind you. I just don't have the space. Except that damn "empty" bedroom.
Um yeah...
Can you see that I spent five freakin hours in there today? I worked the entire time. Was I got done was to fill a box of papers that are older than the hills. I consulted with my Dad's accountant to find out what exactly I need to keep. He said throw out all the utility bills, credit card bills, and anything older than seven years. (I didn't touch any of the current billing statements, paid or unpaid, those are in another room anyway)
When I get this room cleared it will be Quilt Central. I will be in there. IN THERE! And not hunching over a bunch of all stinky paperwork. I will be hunching over some lovely fabrics and my stash and my quilty things and, and, and...
So, my finally and my hopefully is that I have finally started tackling the mess that will someday be my quilt central and hopefully, I can keep at it. I didn't realize how much work it is to purge!

In other news:

For my birthday I went to see two of my kiddos. The youngest daughter has a ranch (ette) down by Fresno, CA. The middle daughter just moved down there with her, because there are work opportunities for her and her boyfriend and a safety net (Her younger sister).
I went horse back riding for the first time in twenty years and for the first time with my younger daughter where we were both riding out own horses. She put me on her most gentle mare. A horn could have gone off next to that horse and she wouldn't have even flinched. Thankfully.
It was absolutely wonderful to wake up to horses outside the bedroom window. A ranch where my daughter used to work up by me just gave her fifteen horses that were going to end up at a slaughter house. They gave them to her so she could make sure they are all sound and then find good homes for them. She also has a few of her own horses. She told me she is keeping the mare that I rode. (YAY!)
Meet Tilly, or Matilda. The heart on here leg is from when she went through another horse rescue called the heart of the horse or something equally romantic sounding. Tilly is in her forever home now. My daughter loves her, so do I.
It was nice sitting in the cool evenings and watching the colors form in the sunsets. Gorgeous I tell you, just gorgeous!
Just a little slice of Heaven right here on earth. Not to mention I got to spend some quality time with my girls and their fellows.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Okay, so I really need some practice!

My first attempt left me feeling inept. (Is that the word I want?)
Obviously, I don't have the control over my hands and machine and feet and fingers that I thought I had. That's why they say practice makes perfect.
I need those gloves that Leah has, I need that silicone thingy that lays on the bed of the machine so I have more control. Gosh...Friday is payday. Guess what I am ordering???
Hey! I sewed! I'm happy. It's what I was striving to do.
More later...

Monday, March 25, 2013


I got sixty or so...(really I forgot to count them) 6-1/2" squares cut out of my white fabric today! YAY me!!!
Tomorrow morning I plan on cutting some batting to go along with those squares. And then...I move my laptop into the living room on the table next to my sewing machine, tune into Leah Day at, and learn from her great methods of Free Motion Quilting.

It has been MONTHS since I was able to sit down and do any type of sewing at all. I thought I was all ready to go and then realized that I had left all my rulers behind at the other house, so went and picked those up so I could continue on my journey.

My Dad said the most wonderful thing to me today. He said after breakfast, "What are you going to do for yourself today?" NO ONE has ever asked me that. It has just made my day so, so happy! I didn't do much for myself to day. I did clean my room, which, yes, was for myself, but it was just something I couldn't put off anymore. It didn't look messy, but it took me a while to get it tidied up. I did cut my squares. Then I went and got some groceries for Dad and I, picked up some 4 X 4's, and some post hole cement, so my BIL can start building Dad's fence. It wasn't for me, but if my Dad is happy then I am happy.

I will try to remember to get pictures as I go along with my FMQ "lessons". I want to keep track of my progress, and here is the best way I know how to do that. Then when I get enough squares done I can follow along with someone's tutorials on putting quilt as you go squares together.

I'm on an adventure!!!

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

A New Machine!!!

I got my income tax return a month or so ago. I splurged and bought myself some new glasses and am having new lenses put in the old frames.

I bet you thought I was going to say I bought something fun...didn't you? Don't really thought I splurged.

Well, I DID buy something fun! I bought a Brother 450Q. Q standing for QUILT! A machine that will make it easier for me to quilt with! I'm not rich so I went with a model that was affordable, but has some good amenities.

I picked the machine up yesterday. I had given the guy a check for $500 to hold the machine. Then went back to pay him the balance. He mistakenly charged me the full amount, then immediately reversed the transaction. Too late, damage done. I have no money for a while, until this debacle gets straightened out. I went and talked to my banker today, she assured me that they would be waving all overdraft fees if any come up, because of the mistake. Way to ruin a perfectly good prize!

Oh well. Now, if I can find a good place to set up my machine here at Dad's, I will be happily making quilted squares until I get the hang of it. Then I can put them all together until I have a nice sized quilted as I went quilt. What fun! I can't wait!

Isn't she cute? Of course, it's sitting on my bed, in my messy bedroom. But it's mine, and I am happy!

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

The Trouble With Hearing

When I moved in with Dad back in October, he was, let's say, a little hard of hearing. It has progressively gotten worse. Since I am here all the time I was not all that aware of the fact that he was turning the TV up a little higher each week. I know it finally got to the point that I had to stand to the right of him and facing him, mute the TV and tell him whatever it was I thought he would need to know. He has hearing aids but always said with a wave of his arm, "Aaaa, those things don't work!" In other words, don't bug me about it. Being the obliging daughter that I am, I heeded his (ahem) warnings. I just dealt with the yelling speaking up.
Today my sister took him to an appointment with the hearing aid doctor. Dad's been putting us off for a few months, my BIL had a talk with me about getting Dad over the hill to see the doctor about it. In my mind, I want to keep the peace with Dad more than my BIL because, well, I live with my Dad. And if it bothered my BIL that much, why doesn't HE take my Dad! Well, the doctor called and made the appointment. I had an appointment, so it fell to my sister to take him. Which is good. He listens to me, then her and usually defers to her. She's older, that doesn't bother me. Especially times like this.
So. They came back with hearing aids cleaned out, fresh batteries, rules of the hearing aids, cleanings, when to change batteries, etc. DAD CAN HEAR AGAIN!!!
The trouble with hearing is...he can hear!!! The neighbors dogs barking, a bump on the wall, water running, a mouse sneezing. Oh Lord help me! He's been telling the neighbors dogs to shut up all afternoon.
This could be very interesting!

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Time Suckers

Can a house suck time away? Could I possibly be in a realm that time fast forwards without a hint of it's doing so?
I seem to not have time to do anything I want. That sounds selfish as I type it. I don't mean it selfishly. I just want time to myself to do what I want and when I want. It's not happening.
Yesterday I had an appointment with the dentist. It's a group that gives really good discounts and let's you make payments. Which we all know are a good thing. because who can afford a dentist these days. I wanted to get "started", not go to the finish line immediately. I have a lot of work to be done. Extractions - 2. Fillings - 4. Partials - upper and lower. Can we say my mouth is a mess. It's because I never learned to take care of my mouth. We won't go into that history.
I am paying for it now. Yesterday, full mouth X-Rays, today that deep cleaning that is HORRIBLE, the 2 extractions, and they will do the castings for the partials.  The fillings will have to wait.

My coworker friend and I had planned on going to see The Hobbit to day as well. I had not planned on being shoved into the dental chair so soon, but in order to save bunches of money I allowed the shove. Which means, early movie, bring friend back home and then off the  torture  chamber  dentist!
I am now frantically doing my laundry, so I have clean clothes for the week. Nothing like cramming 72 hours of errands into a 24 hour period!

In other news...I did stop by JoAnns Fabrics yesterday and managed to only spend $7.00! I think that may be a record for me. Of course, the big dentist bill is a factor in that.

Oh well! Onward and upward. More fun news to come!

Sunday, January 06, 2013

New Year, New Post.

Finally, both my computer and my self have the right combination going! Sometimes when I think I want to write a post the computer isn't giving up it's secrets on how I am supposed to get to where I can write. As in I have no idea where the button or link is to "create a post". Today the blog/post/computer universe is in alignment!
I have been doing a lot of thinking about where I am in this "helping Dad out" business. Some days I come home optimistic and hopeful, other days not so much. He is well, getting around still, but I see changes. Sometimes, I pull up in the driveway, tired from grueling work and no appreciation, I walk in the house dreading the few minor things I need to do to make him happy and I am greeted by three happy little dogs and my Dad's daily greeting of "There she is! Tough day at work?" and "Oh, the dogs are so happy to see their Momma." I am revived. Other days I walk in and I'm pulled down even further by the odor of the house. I won't go into detail there, it's TMI. I have to drag myself through the next few hours, only to resent that I have little (very little) time to myself, before I go to bed to get up and start ALL over the next day.
Daily, Dad apologizes for not getting up out of his chair and doing something. I tell him, well, that is your decision to do with your day as you please. You worked hard for this time. That may not be the answer I should give, but it is the only thing I can think of to say. Maybe I should say nothing?
I don't know how much time to spend with him. I need to unwind and be alone for some amount of time. I need to decompress, not talk to or be talked to. But I feel bad because Dad has been alone all day and probably just wants some company. I also have things to settle back at my house still. I want to paint the bedroom I vacated so my friend can move in. I want to just sit somewhere and sip coffee or tea for as long as I can stand it, I need to fix the sump pump plumbing at my other house, I need to find room in this house for my sewing and weaving stuff. I need to get to my doctor, and start taking my meds again, because I seemed to have slipped back into that age old women's habit of caring for others and not myself. I've gained weight because at this time it is easier to stuff my feelings with food than it is to face and work my feelings out.
Tomorrow I do have a dentist appointment. First one in a few years. I've been thinking, I want to smile again. I am hesitant to, because I am missing some teeth and I don't like how I look. Okay. To the dentist it is. I realize this won't be an over night fix, but I will feel better about myself. Next week will be a doctor appointment and med re issuance. Then I get new glasses the week after that. Maybe sometime in the near future when I can see and smile again I will get my quilting mojo back at the same time I have a space and the tools to do that!
Mind you, I am not complaining, just writing what is going through the head!
Gratuitous picture: My sisters and I at my Dad's 90th birthday party in October.