Thursday, December 20, 2007

Almost Christmas!

It's five days before Christmas and I think I have all my shopping done. Whew! That is a good feeling! Before I left the house this morning, I turned on the Christmas tree. We have such a pretty tree this year. Ev put the lights on it Monday, and I put the ornaments on Tuesday. Last night, as I stood looking at the tree and all its decorations I had a warming thought. The ornaments on the tree almost all have a story behind them. There are ornaments from family and friends, some homemade, some storebought, but all special. There are ornaments with pictures of my children, husband, brothers and sisters, and even pets on the tree. There are Chicago Cubs and Bears ornaments because they are our favorite baseball and football teams. There are ornaments made of glue and glitter by little hands. There are ornaments made by the hands of people who are no longer with us, but still in our hearts, especially at Christmas.

What I want to say, is that our tree has on it everything that is important to me represented on it's branches. There are no computer forms from work on it. There are no power bills on it. There are no checkbook registers on it. It is just love and warmth and everything good in my life. It's a wonderful time of the year! Merry Christmas Everyone!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Friday at Last

Again, not really quilt related, but wanted to post a few musings. Last night we had our first winter storm of the season. We had about 3" of snow come down with some sleet and freezing rain (what is the difference between these two?). Nick was invited to the Christmas party for the church choir. He has played guitar in the choir all year, now. The dinner was held at a restaurant in the next town over, about 8 miles away.

Family members were invited, and since I was the only one not working, Nick invited me to go with him. I figured this would be a good time for him to practice driving in bad weather. He did well. The dinner was really nice, too. The members of the choir really like him and seem to have adopted him as one of their own. Although I may be giving him away to the first one who asks, since he popped up with the comment "yeah, Mom gets drunk all the time on wine" at the dinner! We were sitting directly across from the parish priest. Agh. By the way, I drink about a glass of wine a week, if that. Gotta love him (and his warped sense of humor).

Tonight my friend Diane is coming over just to visit. I made a big pot of chicken rice soup yesterday, so we are going to have soup and fresh bread and just enjoy each other's company. I might start baking some cookies when I get home, just so we have something to. And maybe even make some caramel corn. She has a daughter Johanna's age and a son a couple years older who hangs out with my son.

I played hooky from work yesterday. I brought up my Christmas village houses from storage and cleared off the area where they are going to be set up. I'll finish putting them up over the weekend. We are going to get our Christmas tree Sunday. We get our trees from a tree farm a few miles away. Johanna gets to pick the tree this year, so that means hours of walking through the woods looking for the perfect one!

Ev got up this morning and cleaned off all our cars and warmed them up for us! What a good Bear....

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Another Day

Just another day, but wanted to post a little bit at a time if I remember to! Last night I sat down in my big comfy chair and pulled Nick's guitar quilt over to work on. I actually got an entire band name stitched into the sashing while I was sitting there just watching whatever was on t.v. Mainly I think I needed to keep my mind distracted. You want to know what distracted me? Let me explain...

My daughter, Johanna, called me on the phone when I was driving and was upset about some things at school. She was talking a mile a minute, then pops in with the question "Mom, would you love me no matter what?". ACK. "Yes, dear, what's up?" hmm. "Nothing." So I sat there last night and sewed to keep my mind from imagining a few dozen different scenarios ranging from the assumption any mother of a teenage daughter immediately thinks (baby), to the less significant (bad grade). She came home about 8:30 and I asked if everything was okay. She said yes, and didn't want to talk much. This is not unusual behavior. I really don't think it's anything drastic. She's been having some rough times in one of her classes and I know the teacher is giving her grief. She is contemplating dropping the class. It's band, and there is a trip at the end of the year that she has worked real hard to go on. She's worked for years to go on this trip and now she isn't even sure she wants to go because of the way things are going in the class. I'm pretty sure that is what was on her mind. Okay, I feel better now that I've got that off my mind.

I had to laugh at another blog I read. I belong to a group on the internet called Stashbusters. We are people who enjoy sewing and have a lot of material (stash) that we like to use up. My main way of using stash is in making quilts. One of the other gals on Stashbusters wrote on her blog about her kids and cats. This prompted me to write a little bit here about our critters at home. If you scroll down to older posts, you will see a picture of one of our cats, Figaro. She is the oldest animal in the house, being born in 1994. We have another cat who showed up in 2001. We think he was about 6 months old when he arrived. That's Cheetah, aka fat cat. Showed up scrawny, able to count every bone in him. He now weighs about 25 lbs. The cat waddles, he doesn't walk.

We also have two dogs. Both were shelter dogs we got as pups. We got Nakia in 1996 and Wrigley in 2004. Each family member has bonded with one of the animals in particular. Ev, my husband, has bonded with Wrigley. She's a big black Lab. I bonded with Nakia (that's her picture above), who is part German Shepherd, part whatever came over the fence. Nick has bonded with Cheetah, and Johanna bonded with Figaro. Now, I say each has it's own person, but all the pets are loveable to all family members, even when they don't want the attention!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Table Cloth Finished

Sorry, no picture yet, but I did finish the tablecloth for my mother. We went to her house on Thanksgiving and I gave it to her then. She liked it. Then she requested a Christmas tablecloth! What I really liked was the way it fit her table perfectly and I got lucky on the overhang. It hangs over and just brushes the top of the chairs and bench. I think my Grandpa was looking down from heaven and whispered how far apart the top of a seat was from a table so I could get it right! Grandpa was a cabinet maker. Pretty good one, too. Sure do miss him, especially around the holidays.

I've got some flannel all washed and ready to be cut. It's going to be a square in a square pattern that I saw on t.v. a while back. Don't know when I'll get started on it, because I have a couple other projects that I should finish up first. Those 16 patch blocks are sitting on my sewing table, tapping their foot at me. I think they want to be put into a quilt top before I start anything else! ha ha.

I really haven't been up in the sewing room much these past couple weeks. After Thanksgiving, I came down with a lousy cold, so I've mostly been sleeping. When I have felt good enough, I've pulled out my hand quilting project. One of these days it will be done. It's the guitar quilt for my son.

I have decided that I'm not going to guilt trip myself over not doing any sewing. This is my hobby and if I don't feel like doing it, then it will be there when I do feel like it. I'm not putting any pressure on myself to finish anything for Christmas. If I get a spurt of energy and do finish some things, great. If not, so what? No pressure.