Saturday, March 31, 2007

Fabric Depression 2007

Well, I fell off the stashbusting wagon big time this week. I had a middle-of-the-night, poke-the-order button frenzy. I remembered ordering from the FQ Shop the next day, but ((yikes!)) you should have seen the size of that box. I had to shove it in the house with my foot last night. I couldn't even lift it!

That did it. I was chatting with some online friends about being so angry with myself, and one of them suggested another depression month. April? May? I choose May because I'm going to be working so much in April that I won't be tempted. May will be challenging, though. That's what I need. A conscious decision not to buy whatever is in front of me! So for me May is a no-buy month.

The depression month in August worked wonders for me. But it's kind of 'wearing off' right now. It's like that booster shot you need every so often. You'd-a-thunk that trying to get everything into the stash room would have done the trick, but it didn't. It just put fabric out of sight - and I guess my poor, feeble, pea-sized brain equated that with needing more. I swannee, I AM going to need an 18-bedroom house if I don't stop this right now!

And the funny thing? The wee bit of sewing I've been doing lately has been on crumbs and scraps. That's not even stash busting. I've sent out 51 yards of fabric so far this year, but I'm doing nothing else to bust the stash. Instead I'm concentrating on those itty bitty pieces that should have gone in the garbage. It's a sickness, I tell you, a real sickness!

If anyone is so inclined to join me, I'd be delighted. Mom said that if you hold hands and do things together, they don't hurt so badly. But I don't think this will hurt at all, even if I have to go it alone.

Wait, when is Market? NO, NO, NO, NO -- I don't care how much pretty new stuff comes out. I am NOT buying it!


~ Friends who remind me when I slip and fall
~ A real slip and fall that, thankfully, only resulted in a sore wrist
~ Enjoying this weekend because it will be the last one off until April is over
~ Taxes being done tomorrow (crossing fingers here; I think I'm okay)
~ Daisy hugs

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Boring Without Pictures

I should have dealt with this yesterday, but I didn't. I had to work today and I'm too pooped now. So this week I will definitely solve the mystery of the computer/printer/camera.

I've been rearranging stuff in my stash room. Really all I've been doing is moving mass. It still doesn't all fit. ROFLOL. But the good news is that I've been to the LQS twice in the last week and walked out with nothing. Of course, the shop owner probably doesn't think as much of that accomplishment as I do.

I'm ready to make another string quilt, and I wanted a focus fabric like the poppy one I did. I walked around in the shop and touched every single piece of fabric and nothing sung to me. So I did what all good fabric collectors should do - shopped my stash. By George, I think I've got it! Might need to pick up a couple of more go-withs, but this will work.

Oh, and I was working away this afternoon at the office when the alarm went off in the plant. OMG, I almost wet myself. I'm glad I peeked out there and saw the maintenance man entering the building to light the furnaces. I was about ready to poke the 911 button! It took 20 minutes to slow my heart rate down. There's 75,000 square feet back there and it's real spooky when no one else is in the building.

Yesterday I made more of Jane's crumbs. I've got around 45 made now. I'm just going to keep going on it until I run out of crumbs. Jane and I are going to both have quilts made differently but out of the same fabric. So we decided that someday they're going to be together!

My boss' black lab, "Magic," won fourth place in a field trial this weekend. He won three 1st places in four weekends, and then took a break for a couple of weeks. Joe has the neatest picture of Magic with those three blue ribbons hanging from his collar. I'll have to see if I can borrow it and get it posted. Magic is a beautiful, sweet dog. He's qualified for the National in November.


~ Less than $100 at Target (which doesn't happen often)
~ Giving Daisy a hug, and now she's begging for more
~ Getting organized. It doesn't look like it on the surface, but progress is being made!

Note to Self: Call H&R Block for an appt. tomorrow!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Week is Half Over

And what a long one it has been!

I went to McDonald's today for lunch. Same Voice on the Speaker ...... enough said!

I talked to Judy today in Paducah! Man, am I absolutely pea green with envy! They're having fun, so I guess I'll get over it -- this time! I can't wait to see what loot they picked up at Hancock's!

I'm in a holding pattern on quilting right now. I've been rearranging stuff. I just have too much to make the stash room totally presentable, but at least I can find most of it now. All of the wool stash went into a big tub. Barely. I need to get going on that bed rug, but, frankly, I'm real scared of trying the blanket stitch. Vicky, you're not building a piano here! Keep reminding me of that! The biggest problems I see now are (1) the huge wire baskets that are filled to the brim with collections. Two are Civil War stuff. One is batiks. One is wovens and brushed cottons. Etc, etc, etc. (Now I'm sounding like Yul Brenner .... sheesh!) And then (2) the bolts. Then (3) the kits I've made up. There's no easy way to store all of those. They take up room. Those might have to go into the garage. Of course, I could move my bed into the garage and utilize the master bedroom. No, no, no, just kidding! I'd better be careful what I say here, or someone might take me seriously! LOL. All of the UFOs are now in manageable size tubs. I just need to find somewhere to put them so I don't forget about them. Decisions, decisions. Anyway, I'm making headway. And I'm successfully procrastinating on the giterdun!

I was so tired when I got home last night. I stopped at Mimi's on the way home to get my favorite sandwich to go, and took two bites when I got home and got real sleepy, so I went to bed. What a waste of a good sandwich. I read a while on a good book Jane loaned me about Alaska. I had three more pages to read to finish the book and I didn't make it. I didn't eat lunch yesterday, and my sugar level was too low. I woke up famished this morning, and dove into the bread basket that came with my order. Hopefully I'll get my body back on schedule. I must eat a little something during the day. I must.

This weekend is figuring out this computer/printer/camera conundrum. I hate not having a camera. I'm going to totally miss the poppies blooming this year if I don't get it figured out. OMG, another giterdun! :)

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Admitting Defeat

I've had my UFOs out so I could see them. First they were in my sewing space. Then they were moved to the wall where the bookcase now is. Then they were moved to the dining room. Now they're being moved upstairs into the stash room.

I can't deal with them sitting around making me feel guilty. I need them out of sight. I don't want to dread starting something new when all of 'those' are glaring at me. I don't want to have to explain to anyone, or myself, why they are still not finished. So I'm going to do the only right thing I can do - for my own peace of mind - and move them.

Once I finish this task, I'm going to get going on the giterdun quilt. I also have pink and white baby blocks coming in for a friend. Those will be easy to assemble and will be the only quilt to detour me from the giterdun.

This UFO list is for my future reference, just so I'll know they're around here somewhere:

~ White Christmas applique - four blocks finished
~ Red and white shooting stars - 80% done
~ Manicured bear's paws - just needs borders
~ A secret quilt of Judy's that didn't get done in time for the book audition
~ Botanika - my oldest UFO that just needs quilting
~ Let it Snow/Sew - needs quilting
~ 1st Sat. bright houses - needs borders
~ Nicky's Christmas blocks - will get done this year!
~ Round robin - needs quilting
~ Green thing - needs quilting and donating to charity
~ Red/white/blue - need to finish unquilting it and get it requilted
~ Chocolate Covered Cherries - needs quilting
~ Poppy string - needs quilting
~ Around the Block - needs quilting
~ QOV - needs final border
~ Squishy swap - needs assembling, quilting, and donating
~ Big Quilts in a Bag - cut and ready to assemble
~ Bento Box - cut and ready to assemble
~ Alex's leaf/house retreat project - needs quilting
~ Bundling Board - needs final border and quilting
~ Mardi Gras wallhanging - needs everything
~ I'm sure there are others that I'll unearth downstairs

The bins I'm going to keep at hand because I like working on them:

~ Dutch Treats - 103 blocks done (out of 196)
~ Dear Emma - Sally sent me another pieced row, so I need to catch up with her on the applique
~ Jane's Crumbs - I love making these
~ Three bins of strips. Those need to stay by my cutting table.

So there it is. By the end of the day, it's going to be a lot tidier downstairs, and my upstairs stash room will be ready to explode. I don't care. I don't need the pressure of these things sniping at me when I walk past them. I don't want to end up hating them. And the other little piles of fabric that I brought downstairs because an idea was floating around my pea-sized brain, back up they go into the stash.

As for the quilts on the list that just need quilting (and backings pieced and bindings), I'll do one a month or so and get them off to Judy. My reward will be getting to sit by Daisy on the sofa and stitch bindings, which I love to do.

So that's it. That's my plan. I'm not enjoying quilting lately because of the unfinished stuff. It's cramping my creativity AND productivity. When I'm ready, I'll pull one of them out and work on it. In the meantime, I just need to get back to quilting. It keeps me sane!

Had a great St. Paddy's Day dinner with Jane and her DH last night. And I got hopelessly lost not once, but twice while trying to find a place yesterday. Another adventure (sigh)!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Camera Woes

I honestly have no clue what's going on. I took a picture of the two piddly little Dutch Treat blocks I did this week. Mainly to prove to myself that I actually did something quilty, however small. Put the camera card in the printer and nothing. Took it out, took another picture, reinserted it. Nothing. I give up. Short of having someone come out to figure it all out, and I haven't a clue who that would be, I give up. This is a new camera, a new printer, and a computer that's less than a year old.

So one more thing to add to the list of things that don't work around here. Answer phone is still a mystery, cell phone won't hold a charge, upstairs TV cable doesn't work, broke my portable DVD player ..... okay, maybe I'm just wallowing in self-pity right now. I think I'll go bathe the dog. Or have a glass of wine. Or both. Poor Daisy.

I hated this week at work. It was alternately too busy and too slow. I thought I would get a lot done in the slow times, but I guess I'm not made to work at a slow pace. I work much better with deadlines. Probably from all those years of court reporting.

I think I'm going to look for a new sofa in the next few weeks. I wasn't going to do it, but, frankly, this one is so uncomfortable. I try to sit and watch TV and needleturn, but I find myself moving around trying to find my spot, so I just get up. Of course, that will be something else that can only be delivered during the week. How come delivery folks can't come out at night or the weekends? And the last furniture place I talked to wouldn't haul away the old sofa or desk if I purchased new ones. What in the heck am I supposed to do with them. Tie them on the top of my QuiltMobile and drop them on a freeway somewhere? (That's a California joke!)

Boy, the pity party is really cranking up here!

It all started this morning. I swung into McDonald's to get breakfast. I have a hard time ordering at drive-thrus. My accent and all. It's always interesting to see what's in my bag when I get home. But McDonald's is usually okay. Not this morning.

Speaking very slowly, "I'd like a #3 and a cup of coffee."
The voice on the speaker, "You want what?"
Trying again, even more slowly and louder, "One #3 and coffee."
The voice again, "We don't have those."
Huh? Okay, I resisted the urge to tell her that I'm looking at a picture of #3, but I tried again.

"Ma'am, I want a #3 and a cup of coffee. Can you hear me?"
"We're serving breakfast now," she replied. Aha! I've got a comic here.
Taking a different tactic, and changing my order, "I'd like pancakes and coffee."
"Okay, that will be $6.78. Please pull up to the first window."

Now, I'm really confused. But I do like I'm told. When I got to the window, she said, "That will be $7.97."
"Wait, wait, what do you have as my order?"
She said, "Well, what did you want?" Yep, a comic.
Patiently, "I really want a #3 and coffee."
She said, "Wait a minute. Let me see if we have that."

To clarify here for anyone reading who hasn't done McDonald's for breakfast, that's a biscuit with egg and bacon, and a cup of coffee.

She comes back and said, "We normally don't serve that for breakfast, but my manager said she will get it for you. That will be $7.97."

No, I'm not going to give her $7.97 for something that usually costs less than four bucks, and it's 7:55 a.m. I think I'm probably safely still in the breakfast menu time. So I pull back the $10 I'm holding out towards her. "Could you please have your manager come to this window?" She gave that huge sigh that only 18 year-olds can give. You know, the real dramatic sigh accompanied by rolling eyes and shaking her head.

So the manager comes over to the window. This lady is my age. Surely we'll understand one another. I said, "I'm trying to order a #3 and coffee." The manager, without saying a word to me, turns and screams back into the bowels of McDonald's, "Cancel those parfaits!" Then she asked me to pull up to the next window and she'd take my money there as the cars are now dozens deep behind me.

At the window for picking up your food, she appears and asks me again what I'm ordering. I said, "I-want-a-#-3-and-a-cup-of-coffee." Okay, maybe I said it real sarcastically, but at this point it's 8:05 so ten minutes have passed since that first fateful encounter with The Voice On The Speaker. Honest to God, she said, "Well, why did you order parfaits then?" OMG, here we go again. "I did not order parfaits." "Well, the clerk has you down for three parfaits."

Now my logic and reason are determined to win the day. "Ma'am, do you think she might have misunderstood me?" The manager looked perplexed, but wasn't going to concede even that small issue. "No, I don't think so." I gave up. I gave her my ten, got my change, got my food and drove the three or four blocks to the office.

When I got to the office, I walked out into the production area and asked everyone if they would do me a favor and tell me what I'm saying. "I'd like a #3 and coffee." There were several guesses, none of them right. I really give up.

You'd think in an area as cosmopolitan as Southern California, that one little old Cajun accent wouldn't be such a problem. Of course, every single day for the whole almost 14 years I've been here someone has asked me where I'm from. I've taken to asking them to guess, and a surprising number of folks guess England. ROFLOL. (BUT have you noticed all the Brits who are now playing Southerners in movies?)

You see why I'm pity-partying today? From McDonald's to the camera .... what a day!

Daisy, are you ready to go for a walk? Don't ignore me. You understand me perfectly! Daisy, come here. Daisy? Wait, let me go open the refrigerator. That will get her attention!

Friday, March 09, 2007

250th Blog

Since February 2006 -- that's a whole lot of talking!

ROFLOL. I'm too tired to think about anything else tonight. It was just important to reach this goal! :) I crack myself up!

I'm trying to decide whether to go into the office tomorrow, or stay home and clean house and go in early Sunday. Either way, it must be done. Maybe Sunday morning. Yeah.

I'm also trying to decide which quilty project to work on this weekend. I want to get the last border on Bundling Board and piece a backing for it. Since nothing else is on the cutting or sewing tables, I guess the giterdun is up. :(

A manicure and the market tomorrow. But maybe both of those can wait until Sunday, too, as I'll be out. And I can drop the quilt off at the quilt shop on the way back from the office. It's decided .... I'm saying home tomorrow!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Brown Quilt

Tonight I picked up the shop sample I made for Ginger's to get the binding on it. I was pleased with the overall quilting on it. But I had forgotten about the backing. I stashbusted for the dark brown, and then used the leftovers from the front. The only thing remaining from this quilt is in the strip bins. There! That wasn't hard!!
Today I was so busy at work ... really busy. I need to remember to eat at some point before 1:30 or so. Yesterday I picked up a side salad from McDonald's at 11:30 when I went to the bank, and about 4:00 I got to eat about half of it. That killed my appetite for dinner, so I went to bed without eating again. I woke up really hungry this morning, but had to be there early so didn't eat again. By lunchtime I was starving -- okay, well, that's an exaggeration because I could probably live off the "fat of the land" for quite some time. But I had like 10 minutes to get something and get back. So a hotdog. I really need to pack lunches, but that would entail a trip to the market. I'll figure it out. I just know I've got to get my blood sugar somewhat level by eating regularly.
Last night I did the house chore on my list. Tonight I am trying to convince myself I don't need to do my little chore. Of course, that would mean double work tomorrow night. Guess I'll get off my duff and just do it.
Interesting email from the quilt shop this morning. A lady was in there and saw the polka dot quilt that I loaned them to hang in the shop. She left her phone number for me as she is interested in maybe purchasing it. Geez, I never thought about selling a quilt. But I called her tonight and got her answer machine. Left my number. If she calls me back, I figure I'll just set a really high number on it and she'll decide she doesn't want it! LOL. I'm not attached to that quilt. It was just a fun experiment with polka dot charm squares from an online swap. I guess I'm just flattered that someone liked it! :)
Oh, one more interesting piece of news. One of the International Quilt Festivals will be held in Long Beach CA in July 2008. I've always wanted to attend that festival. Maybe I'll still be living here then. But just in case, I'd better start saving my spare change!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

An Oops Kinda Day

I didn't know what to work on today, so I pulled out the strip bins and decided to make some red-centered string blocks for Nancy. Well, the first one I made with a center strip that was too wide. Oops, should have gone back to her directions. Of course, I had already marked all the foundation pieces, so the next eight blocks were made with the red strip off center by 1/4". Second oops. Then I made a block with the center block upside down; didn't notice it until I was done. Third oops. Finally I got 12 blocks made with reasonably centered red strips. Oh, and one blue one I had already made. So those will be off to Nancy tomorrow. The eight off-centered blocks will go in the Oops Box. Maybe they'll get used someday; maybe not. Right now I just want to get them out of sight!

Daisy slept all day. She's just now rousing. This is the time when I would normally pull in from work. Now I know what she does while I'm gone! LOL

Bundling Board - Almost Done

The final border is a dark plaid. It's been interesting working with these wovens and brushed cottons. It was hard to square the blocks as the fabric moved around so much. So while it's not perfectly square, hey, it's folk art!! This quilt was quick and fun to make. I learned a lot, and look forward to the next folk art/primitive quilt.
My brother is home and feeling pretty good. Naturally he's not well yet, and is having a bit of trouble getting around as he's so sore from the incision. I suggested he might want to get a walker to hang onto to keep from falling, and he said he already picked one up. He said it helps him stand up from a seated position, and he's able to walk more with the walker than without. We discussed when I should visit, and he wants me to wait until he's up and about. Since April's out because of tax stuff at work, it'll be more than likely the second half of May. I want to scout the area out for real estate while I'm there, too.
Jane came over yesterday afternoon, and we were rummaging through some stuff in a closet. She discovered I had two of the same kit in there. Then I went out to the car to get a quilt book I wanted to show her, and she pulled another one just like it out of a stack on the end table. That does it. No more buying anything! I don't even know what I have here any more!
~ Road to recovery for my brother and a good friend.

~ Sleeping 10 hours last night. I must have needed it!

~ Finally finishing a flimsy.

~ A good TV dinner. Those things sure have improved! :)

~ Bird chirping outside. It's crispy, cool and beautiful today.

~ As ever, my Daisy dog.
EDIT NOTE: Wow, I just noticed how uneven my spacing on the "flowers" are from block to block. I need to pay more attention to that ... but I've got an excuse for the fourth block; I prepped that one while I was waiting for news on my brother last Fri. night. (sigh) It's folkart, right? LOL

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Blessings and Surprises

First and foremost, my brother has gone home from the hospital! I know he's got a long recovery still ahead, but he's home and nothing else matters! I've worn out my knees praying for this!

And the surprise package on my doorstep tonight. Sheesh, now what did I order? I swear I was being good! Was I poking order buttons in my sleep again?

Well, this was the second quarterly quilt kit from Jan Patek. I love this quilt, and all the fabric came packaged in the neatest bag! I need to get busy since I haven't made the quilt from last quarter!

So the blasted giterdun is gonna get done! Yep, I want to move on to other things, and the only way I can do that is to do that thing.
Oh, I watched the best movie this week. "Akeelah and the Bee." If you haven't seen it, it's a must-see. It's been a long time since I've come away with such a happy feeling.


~ The blessings bestowed on my family

~ The army of friends and acquaintances without whose support I wouldn't have made it

~ Not breaking my neck when I tripped over the surprise on my doorstep tonight! :)

~ The constant inspiration of the blog ring members