Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Today's the Day

Yep, today's the day I get back in the cottage and turn on the 750.  I've been putting it off and really don't know why except that I wanted everything finished back there first.  It's going to be a while before that happens, so I might as well just do it.  Of course, I'm already procrastinating this morning, doing laundry in my pajamas instead of showering and making the trek.  Okay, okay, I'm going just as soon as I finish this post.

I have so many UFOs that are near finished, but I need to concentrate on a couple of things before Christmas.  I promised a friend I would make two Route 66 placemats for her sister's motor home.  I have the fabrics but just need to sit down and do the boring cross hatch quilting on those.  I have three quilts that need bindings, so those need to get sewn on.  And I have two quilts for Brenda Riddle's Quilted Comfort project that were lost in the move.  I've found the tops but only one of the backings.  I need to make those a priority.  Once these items are off my plate, I can turn my attention to other things.

I'm having the worst time finding my pictures on Picasa.  It makes no sense because I've been using that program for years.  I downloaded several pictures and this is the only one I could find, so this is it for today.

Zapp's is a Louisiana company founded in 1985.  They started out with kettle cooked potato chips with a bit of Cajun seasoning, and their menu has expanded to include these pretzels in the shapes of footballs and fleur de lis.  For everyone who doesn't know, the fleur de lis is the logo of the New Orleans Saints, and "Who Dat?" is the official saying, I guess.  LOL.  Louisianians certainly take their football seriously.  (But we won't talk about LSU's loss to Bama last week, will we?)

I need to figure out computer things.  I need a new blog site and somewhere else to download and edit pictures.  I just don't have the knowledge or the desire to deal with those things right now. 

I've finished 208 out of 291 of the baskets.  My goal is a minimum of one a day, and that's all I've gotten accomplished for the last eight days.  I'm back at physical therapy when I thought I was done.  Turns out my "good" knee is now my "bad" knee.  I have developed chondromalacia in that knee, probably from overcompensating the past year.  It'll get well but I have to back off on exercising for now and can only do certain things with that knee.  It has certainly messed up my nice little exercise routine.  I was dropping a pound a week exercising, a slow and steady progress, and was feeling good.  I'll try to keep that up but it will be harder now.  I read something someone posted a couple of weeks ago, "My goal is to lose 10 pounds.  Only 15 more to go."  That cracked me up.

It has been so wet here for the past month.  This week has been sunny but the yard is saturated and the mosquitoes are horrendous.  I had totally forgotten about those as we didn't have any where I lived in SoCal.  I took Penny out yesterday afternoon when I got back from therapy, and she was coated by mosquitoes in about two minutes.  She was trying to pee and I was swatting at her back.  The look she gave me ..... "Really, Mom?"  I finally had to just leave her alone for a couple of minutes to take care of business.  She's on heartworm preventative medicine, but it still disturbs me to see them on her.

All of this rambling - yes, procrastination.   So off to the cottage.  Wish me luck!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Happy Halloween

This crazy weather has cancelled the Harvest Festival in my little town for a couple of weeks.  And I'm not sure what's going to happen to the little Trick-or-Treaters with the huge rain storm expected tomorrow.  Truly ghastly ghostly weather!

My yard is loving the rain, though.  The pool overflowed, but all of the plants and shrubberies are a gorgeous green.  The weeds, too!  Seriously, they popped up in three days this week. 

I found a couple of Halloween-ish quilts to hang on the quilt rack.  I have a couple of more around the house but for some reason I can't get those pictures to download.

The top quilt was done at a retreat about ten years ago.  A blackish-gray background with lots of leaves and houses in fall colors.  The bottom quilt was a kit offered at the Fat Quarter Shop five years ago or so.  I'm sorry but I don't remember the names of either of the quilts.  I love the Halloween fabrics in the bottom quilt.

I've had serious computer issues since I switched to U-Verse.  I was totally down three days this week.  My laptop won't connect at all to the internet even though it says I have a connection.  I finally got the desktop back up this morning by rebooting a dozen times.  I may not like this new service very much.  If this continues over the weekend, I'll give them a call on Monday to schedule a visit out here. 

Beware of all the ghosts and goblins who may be visiting you.  FYI:  There's a rumor going around that candy will keep you from getting tricked!

P.S.:  This is my 1300th post.  Sort of fitting for Halloween, don't you think?  ;)

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Nervous Waiting

I'm pacing nervously awaiting a call from the vet that Penny's teeth cleaning under anesthesia is over and that she's fine.  This has always been an annual routine procedure, but Penny was having some health issues that I had checked out.  My wonderful local vet and a specialist vet in Lafayette together with consultations with LSU vet school found that she has an enlarged heart, a mitral valve issue, and an enlarged liver.  We're just keeping a close eye on her for now and she'll go on medications when the problems progress.  She was cleared for anesthesia by a vet cardiologist specialist, but I'm still nervous this morning.  My vet promised me that she would call me immediately when Penny was awake. UPDATE:  Penny did fine.  I'm SO relieved!  Of course, she's not going to be talking to me for a couple of days!

It's so beautiful today that I thought I would ride and walk around downtown to get rid of some of this nervous energy.  The town is preparing for the big harvest festival at the end of the month.  Well, "big" is a relative term when you live in a small town.  But it's been fun watching the decorations go up along Main Street, around the historic light poles in the middle, and all of the store fronts that are decorating.  I dodged traffic - don't laugh; there were a couple of cars - to grab a few pics.  The businesses and organizations are still decorating the poles, so it'll be pretty when they're done all the way down the boulevard.  In the meantime ...

Isn't that sky the most gorgeous blue?

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Gorgeous Sunday

Yep, fall is here.  The weather is in the low 60s, crispy, clear, a slight breeze, sun shining brightly.  As soon as I'm done here, Penny and I are going outside to play!

I've been working on the Trick or Treat baskets, from the Blackbird Designs book When the Cold Wind Blows.  There were 120 something done when I picked it up last month.  I now have 168 finished out of 291.  Well, the one standing alone below needs the handle redone.  It's a tad wonky!  But that's the beauty of needle turn applique.  Just take out those stitches, reposition and restitch.   I laughed when I pulled out the last eight done and saw this one.  Geez Louise!  Goes to show I can't stitch and watch an LSU game at the same time!

And I've also been working in the Cottage every day.  This week I cleared off my sewing table -- well, mostly cleared it off -- the cutting table, placed the dining table and chairs, and emptied a ton more boxes.  Of course, every corner has things sitting around that need to be put away.  I have a lot more room, really a lot more, than I had before, and more closets, but everything is different and I just have to decide where to put those last piles of things. 

Penny walks around thinking, "What the heck?"  I have a pillow for her to lay on but she's too busy exploring now to settle down in one spot.   As soon as I can get help for a hour or so I'll be able to knock this out.  But in the meantime, I need to turn on the 750.  I have three quilts that need bindings sewn on, and two placemats for a friend that need to be quilted.  Maybe later today I'll get started on those.
It's been almost a year since I moved here, and I'm just now getting back into the swing of things.  I'm sure by this time next year I'll have a bunch of UFOs finished up and I'll be putting the finishing touches on my Christmas 2016 projects!  Yeah, I know.  If wishes were fishes ...

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Another UFO

I have UFOs all over the place, and the two I've chosen to work on lately are truly long-term projects.  I need to concentrate on the ones that can be finished in shorter order, not these!

Kathie Holland inspired me to start these drunkard's path blocks a couple or three years ago.  I pulled out this project bag at the same time I pulled the Trick or Treat baskets because a lot of the same fabrics are used in both.  I was delighted to find that I had probably 75 strips already cut.  I couldn't find the quarter circle template, though, so I made another one.  Then I apparently dropped that one somewhere on the floor and Penny found it .... so I made another one.  I'm doing these in increments of 50, and I now have 250 done.  It's an easy project to pick up.  I need to find Kathie's inspiration picture so I can at least have a ballpark estimate of how many I need.  I suspect it will be a lot more than 250 since these are only four inch blocks.

It warmed up a tad here this past week but fall is still in the air.  Or maybe football is in the air.  LSU plays today.  The game was supposed to be held in South Carolina but because of the flooding there, the game was moved to Baton Rouge.  LSU's team plane will pick up the USC team and take them back home after the game.  The LSU band will also play the USC fight song.  All proceeds from the game after expenses will go back to USC.  I'm proud to be an LSU Tiger fan!

But back to fall -- the little nursery here had some fall mums that I tried and tried to resist and just couldn't.  So I clumped a few on either side of my front door with a wreath that was unearthed when I moved.  Nothing fancy, but it decorates the joint up a bit.  If I run across some pumpkins, I'll add them to the mix.                                                       

The squirrels were gathered around these on the first morning they were on the porch.  So far I haven't seen any nibbling on them.

Monday, October 05, 2015


The Cottage is coming along nicely.  The cutting and sewing tables are clear, and although there are some project tubs and a few boxes lined up against the walls awaiting their designated place, at least I think I can start sewing in there a bit.

I was reminded by a friend (thanks, LadyB) about my basket blocks.  I quickly put my hands on that project tub, and I've been working on those.  It's definitely a long-term project but I'm not taking this one to The Home with me.  I want to use it before then!  There were around 128 done when I pulled them.  I now have 148 done - out of 291.  I'll plug away on these every time I sit down at night.  I'm working in increments of 20 so as not to get overwhelmed.

Other than that, I've been doing a lot of work in the yard.  Mostly with hired help, but I've been doing what I can with the limitations.  I can sit in a chair and lean over and weed.  I can rake leaves.  I can supervise and give directions .......  ;)
We cut back these azaleas outside the sunroom about three weeks ago.  They were way too tall, and I was okay with the fact that they wouldn't bloom this year.  Lo and behold, the blooms starting popping out.  They're a dark pink and then fade to a lovely pale pink as the bloom ages.  I guess they just needed a haircut! 

Penny is doing great.  She loves going outside and chasing squirrels and lizards.  The birds, however, drive her nuts.  There are one or two birds that love to taunt her by swooping low and squawking loudly.  She immediately hits the dirt, and then when they're past her, she jumps up and acts real brave.  I love my weenie dog!

I plan on blogging more regularly just as soon as a couple of projects are finished up around the homestead.  I'll have the extra time to do what I want to do - no yard projects, no physical therapy, just me and my sewing machine!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Winner Chosen

LSU won last night, and it's glorious and cool here today.  All is right in my world! 

Penny wasn't cooperating this morning in  picking a winner for the four Miss Rosie's new patterns from the Fat Quarter Shop.  She was more interested in eating and rolling in the grass.  So I let the random number generator thing chose the winner:

Terry said, "Carrie lived in Arizona before moving to Texas and the Birdie, Birdie, Birdie is from Hope Floats, one of my favorite movies. Can't wait to see your Sewing Cottage all done." 

Terry, please email me at with your mailing address and I'll get these out to you tomorrow. 

I'd like to thank everyone for entering.  I haven't blogged much for the past couple of years but I hope to change that very soon.  I have a plan for getting some quilting done and I'll have something to post - finally!

As far as the answers to the questions, all of them were answered correctly except for one.  Maybe Carrie Nelson will provide the answer to us on how many patterns she's published through the years.  Someone said it was a lot and they are all wonderful, and I totally agree with that! 

Thank you to Kimberly at the Fat Quarter Shop for donating the patterns for the give-away.