Sunday, July 31, 2011

Fire destroys landmark

Here's what's left of the Coliseum Ballroom.  Last night there was a fire that destroyed it.  I think the news said it was 90 years old.  I remember my one grandmother talking about going there every weekend as a girl, saving up a dime all week to get in.

Jump starting the day

Well, I've already done laundry and dishes and mopped the floor and combed the cat.  Guess I'm done with work for the day!  Oh, wait, no one else is up yet and I promised a big breakfast...sigh.  I'm going to take a shower and then cook and if these guys don't get up by then, they are just going to have to eat it cold because I'm not going to lose the entire day cooking and cleaning!

Did some sewing yesterday.  Finished putting together those last seven blocks.  Picked out more fabric pairs, cut material, ironed it, and have about half of it cut into the strips I need to start piecing with.  When Johanna and Ben leave I will go up there and get back to it.  Feel like making some progress on that project today!

Later today I did invite Nick and Bethany over to make homemade pizza.  Johanna and Ben are also invited, but I kinda doubt they will come since they were here overnight and all.  I'm cheating this time because I bought pre-made pizza dough that comes in a tube in the refrigerated section.  Hey, it's less mess and I'm all for that.  When it's this hot out, the less time I'm in the kitchen the better.

Lori and I went to a rummage sale here in town yesterday.  I got the cutest basket to use in the sewing room.  It will be just right to put finished pieces in while I'm working on a project.  Also picked up an almost finished needlework project.  Just like with crocheted doilies and cross stitched pillow cases, I can't stand to think of all the work someone put into something like that for it to just end up in a land fill.

My dryer should be coming this week, hooray!  I'll be glad to get the old appliances out of here and sent to the scrap yard.  Although I will feel a twinge about the dryer going.  After all, it's been with us 20 years...  haha.

Yesterday the news said it was the first day in 21 days that the high temp was not in the 90's.  It was only 87!  sheesh.  We had the fourth hottest July on record.  I'm ready for Winter...

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Today's progress

Here's the next group of blocks before they are blocks...hee hee.  Not the best of pics, the colors are much better than this.  After these blocks are done I will have 21 total.  I'll have to lay them out just for grins and giggles and take a photo.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

My innermost thoughts on vegetarian bacon

It looks like play doh.

Nick and Bethany were here and I made their vegetarian bacon blt's and regular blt's for Ev and I.  Had some chips and canteloup to go with them.  Nice, cool supper.  Tomorrow Uncle Ray and I are going out to have fish.  I'm really not that stoked for fish, so maybe I'll have something else. 

I'm sitting here with the cat next to me and she is snoring! 

Am I the only one who actually LIKES the fact that my sheets don't match and I have several different pillowcases on my bed pillows?

Went upstairs tonight and that little air conditioner did it's job after about an hour or so.  I sewed the strips together for the next set of seven blocks.  Now they need to be cut into sections.  I don't know that I will get upstairs tomorrow morning because I have an errand to run before work.  Will see how early I get up.

45 productive minutes this morning

I am on a roll!  Went up and pressed and cut material into strips for 7 more blocks.  Since I can't run the iron and the a/c up there at the same time, doing the ironing early in the morning is the best plan.  Tonight when I get home I'll put the a/c on while I'm making supper and hope that it cools off enough so that I can go up later and sew.  Breaking this project down into segments of 7 blocks at a time was not planned, but it is working out very well. 

I have one more stack of greens to make blocks from after this current set of 7 is done.  I'm anxious to move on to the next color.  Don't know if I'll do reds or blues.  Blue is one of my favorites and I'm kind of saving it.  Also have some browns to work with.  It's just so much fun, playing with all these fabrics and colors and patterns.

Might make blt sandwiches again for dinner.  The temp is supposed to reach 100 again today, so I don't want to heat up the house any more than necessary.  That air conditioning is working prety hard and anything I can do to lessen it is a good thing.  Not sure yet.  Since Nick might be over for dinner with his friend, I have to find out if they will be eating at the house.  If so, I have to make something vegetarian.  They do have vegetarian bacon, so maybe I'll try that.  Just not going to stress over it, that's for sure!  Hey, I may just order pizza!  Always an easy fix!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Another hour of sewing tonight

I have finished a total of 14 blocks for the quilt a long!  whoopee!  haha.  I also got seven more sets of fabric ready to be pressed and cut for more blocks.  I sure hope I don't lose my momentum on this one.  I feel like if I can keep going like I am, I'll just gain speed and really get something done that I will feel pretty good about!  Sew, 14 down, 58 to go!  hee hee

Nick's friend from Georgia arrived today.  They went straight from the airport to the zoo.  It sure was a hot day to go to the zoo, but they are young...  I told Nick not to get too close to the monkey house because they might think he was an escapee and keep him...  haha.

I am feeling rather burned out at work right now.  Hope this will pass.  This has not been a good time at work, with the budget cuts then the pay and hour cuts.  I am looking for another job, but there aren't many out there to choose from.  I'm really lucky to have anything right now, and I know that!

Three mornings in a row of fun

I was up and at it again this morning...sewing before work, working on the 36 patch blocks.  I'm so loving these blocks!  It's like each one has it's own little personality and when they are completed just have such a good look about them.  Even the colors that I though might not work well together in a block seem to transform into interesting combinations.  I finished sewing five of the seven blocks I had pieced strips all ready to sew.  They need to be pressed, but they look nice.  I have two more sets of strips to make into two blocks, then will have to press and cut more fabrics.  Just having so much fun with this!

I think crazymomquilts mentioned on her blog that there wouldn't be any sashing between the blocks when finished.  Before I put them together, I think I'll audition a small sashing strip, just to see how I like it.  With all these wild combinations, it might need to have somewhere for the eye to rest.

I think I have mentioned before that I had an addiction to McDonald's oatmeal in the mornings.  Well, in an effort to save money, I have started to bring my own version of it to work to eat.  I just throw a handful of instant oats into a 2 cup container that has a lid on it, along with dried cranberries and raisins.  McDonald's oatmeal has maple and brown sugar, plus fresh apples in it.  I could take or leave the apples, so I don't add them to my homemade version (I like apples, just not crazy about them in my oats).  As far as the maple and brown sugar go, I would like them, but have found that I can do without them and it's one small way to cut down on calories.  So when I get to work I just add hot water from the dispenser and it's pretty good.  As well as saving money, it was almost an act of desperation to get this recipe to my liking, since last week our McDonald's closed for three months for remodelling!

I didn't really get into talking about the Kindle application that I downloaded yesterday.  What sparked me into doing this was that Bonnie Hunter has been posting about free Kindle books on her blog, and some of them looked really interesting.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

What I accomplished today

Look at these nice neat stacks of pieced strips, all lined up like good little children!  I finished piecing them this far tonight and pressed them.  The blocks go together very quickly from this stage on.

Nick was over for a bit tonight.  We swam for a few minutes, but it clouded up and we saw some lightening.  It never did really rain, just a few teaser drops.

I downloaded the free Kindle app for PC and a free e book.  I still want the Nook color, but this will at least keep me happy for a while, especially because it was all free.

If I do something two days in a row, does that make it a habit?

Yes, I went upstairs to sew again this morning before work.  Hey, I'm actually accomplishing things when I go up there in the morning.  Today I sewed some of the pieces together for the 36 patch blocks.  Enough, so that tonight I can do a quick press on the pieces and probably finish a couple blocks.  That is, if I get upstairs tonight.

Nick dropped off his laundry in my car at work.  He's teaching lessons tonight and will stop by the house on his way back home.  I'll put a load in as soon as I get home and whatever gets done, gets done.

Maybe he will want to swim tonight.  I'm thinking I might take a dip after I get home.  Just making Monte Christo sandwiches for dinner, so that will be quick and easy at least.

There is an ice cream cake in the freezer here at work.  A coworker had a birthday today and brought it in for all of us.  I have not had any of it and I'm trying my best to resist temptation!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Morning progress

This tidy stack is what I accomplished before work.  I cut the pieced strips into 2-1/2" sections tonight while watching a little t.v.  Also, I took my shower again tonight just in case I feel like doing some sewing in the morning tomorrow...  I'm really on a roll right now. 

My sister came over for dinner tonight.  She didn't stay too late.  I picked up some chicken and fixin's.  The microwave kept blowing fuses and we had to run over to the next town to buy a package of fuses.  Then when we got home I could not find which fuse is bad.  Turns out it was the surge protector, not the fuse!  Oh well, we had fun just running around.

Unexpected hour of sewing

Yesterday night I posted that I had cut strips for seven more blocks and was ready to sew them up anytime.  Well, that opportunity presented itself this morning when I got up a few minutes earlier than usual.  Since things were ready to be sewn, I just went upstairs and got right to it!  I sewed all the strips together for seven more blocks.  Now I need to cut the strips apart into segments to make the block.  These come together pretty quickly, so if I get upstairs tonight for any length of time, it would not be unreasonable to finish a few more blocks!  Seems like once the pressing and cutting is done, I can move pretty fast on any blocks.  Since I have the fabrics paired up for several more blocks and don't need to rummage through the bins of material (although I do enjoy that part!) I don't find the pressing and cutting part to be quite as daunting a task as it could be.  That's something I can do sitting down at my table in front of the t.v. upstairs, so it doesn't feel like as big a task.

My sister is supposed to come for dinner tonight.  I'm going to stop and get fried chicken on my way home from work.  It will come with two sides so I'll get mashed potatoes and salad.  We can have corn on the cob and green beans and really have a nice meal!  I do have to text her and make sure she likes green beans.  She's a bit of a fussy eater...  Hard to believe she is my sister because she doesn't like tomatoes!  haha.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Seven blocks done!

Here's my progress so far!  Seven blocks done, 65 to go!  Hee hee.  I spent quite a few hours in the sewing room this weekend.  This afternoon and evening it cooled off enough so that I didn't have to have the air conditioning on up there since it had been on all night.  That meant I could use the iron without blowing a circuit, so I pressed 14 more pieces of fabric to make seven more blocks.  I also cut them into strips, so I'm ready to rock and roll anytime this week.  These blocks are so refreshing to make because each one is different.  I'm working with greens and yellows next.  Ev and Nick helped me pair up some of the fabrics.

The guys got the tire fixed on the car today and everything is back to normal with it, thankfully!  Glad it wasn't worse than just a patch for the tire.  I think Ev wanted to get it fixed fast so that I wouldn't have an excuse to drive his truck more!  haha.  I did take the truck to the produce stand and got some goodies.  Corn, zuchini, tomatoes, peaches, nectarines, strawberries, onions, potatoes, all kinds of goodies!  I got a little bit of everything.  I also went over to my friend Donna's and picked some green beans, just a handful, really, to make a meal tomorrow.  I invited my sister over for dinner and I'm going to get some fried chicken, but thought that some green beans and corn on the cob would be good with it.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

My husband, my hero

Yes, my darling hubby is my hero.  Coming home from dinner today, wouldn't you know it, but we had a flat tire right when we were getting off the interstate at our exit.  Faster than any pit crew I've ever seen, Ev had the tire off and the donut spare on!  He said he wanted to make sure it got done quickly so I didn't have to be in the heat very long!  He worries too much...but I sure appreciated it!  Oh, and by the way, I've never seen any pit crews, just for the record...  haha.

I did do some more sewing when I got home, but only finished one more block.  The other three won't take but a couple minutes, I just got sidetracked.  Nick called and asked if I would make him a grilled cheese, as he was on his way home and wanted to stop here for a bit.  Sigh.  Yes, I know I seem to be the short order cook around here lately, but that seems to be part of the definition of "mom". 

I did get compensation from him in the form of his opinion on some material.  I needed a fresh set of eyes to help me match up some colors for more blocks.  I was working out of the green stash.  Ev helped me a bit earlier, but there were a few fabrics that I just couldn't place with any others.  Nick found some combinations that I didn't.  Still have a few fabrics that haven't matched up with anything yet, but that's okay.  I'm farther along than I was at the beginning of the day!  Some of the greens had too much of a yellow tint to work with any of my true greens, so I think they might find matching colors when I work out of the yellow stash.

Goofy looking grilled cheese

Do you notice anything funny about these three grilled cheese sandwiches?  My darling husband has a bad habit of foraging through the loaf of bread for just the right pieces, and leaving the remains all scrunched up.  There is nothing wrong with the pieces he bypassed, so I really don't understand why he doesn't use them, but after almost a quarter century of marriage, I just don't even ask.  It's not that big of a deal.  It makes for some really odd shaped sandwiches, though!

Maybe he is just getting back at me for all the times he has carried groceries into the house and I have warned him not to squish the bread!

Here's the third finished 36 patch.  I have four more that are in the final stages and should have them done by the end of the day.  I was doing them one by one, but I think I can do them in small groups, like four or five at a time, successfully.  Just really having fun with this and loving the variety!

The early bird gets the worm

Or in this case, the early bird gets to do some ironing before it gets too hot!  I woke up at 6 to let the dog out (thank you, Ivy, for keeping me on schedule all 7 days of the week, even those that don't require me to be up at the crack of dawn) and was fully awake, so I went upstairs.  I didn't turn the a/c unit on right away because it wasn't just horrible up there and I wanted to get some fabrics pressed so I could cut them for more 36 patch blocks.  I got enough fabrics pressed to make 5 more blocks, still all in purples.  Turned on the a/c then (it was getting close to 90 up there and that was just too much) and cut strips for those five blocks.  I'm all set to start sewing in a little bit.  Came back downstairs and laid down again because Ev is still  out like a light and I'm basically lazy!  Going to take my shower now and get moving.  Probably throw a load of wash in and do up a few dishes.  The dishwashing fairy missed our house again.  sigh.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Another 36 patch

Told you I was addicted!  Crazy thing is, I'm considering going up and making a third one and I'm already in bed for the night!  In an effort to beat the heat upstairs, I started using the Ott Light my dad gave me a couple years ago as a task light when I cut and press.  I have a task light above the sewing machine, so I really don't have to put the overhead light on if I don't want to.

Because the air conditioner and the outlets in the sewing room are on the same circuit, I have to turn the window unit off when I want to use the iron upstairs.  It would blow a circuit if I didn't.  I could always bring the material down here, but right now it's not a big deal because I just press enough material for one block at a time.  Not the way I usually work, but that's okay too.  Kind of refreshing to see 'instant' progress in the form of a finished block, rather than having all the pieces stacked up to press, then cut, then sew...  In this case, because of the scrappiness and all of the block, I think this method is going to work better for me.

Here is what the two blocks look like.  I doubt I'll have two purple blocks together in the top, but as I said in an earlier post, I need a lot of blocks and I just started with my favorite color!  There are a couple pieces of fabric in the corner of the pic that are probably going to be the next block I make.

Nick came over after 9 tonight.  He texted and asked if there was anything to eat here!  Well, it wasn't a big deal to make him a couple quesadillas, so I did, but I'm not staying up with him.  He's waiting for his dad to get home, then will probably head back home.

My 36 patch

I think this is going to be an addiction.  Crazy Mom Quilts quilt-a-long with the 36 patch blocks is going to be lots of fun!  Thank you, cmq, for giving me the inspiration to make this block.  What I like about it, well there are several things I like, but one of them is that it's just squares and I like the combination of light and dark contrasting fabrics.  I like the precision of matching corners.  I like that I can use up a lot of different fabrics.  Fun, fun, fun!

Still plenty hot here.  Got to 101 today.  yuck.  That was the actual temperature.  Not sure what the heat index was, but I know it wasn't good.  Really worried about Ev at that factory.  He's on 12 hours today and that is just ridiculous.  At least he has the weekend off.

Tomorrow we are going out with friends to Buffalo Wild Wings.  Ev hasn't been there yet and I think he will like it.  Going to go early in the evening, so hopefully we won't have to wait too long to get a seat.  The guys always give us grief about picking places where we end up waiting a long time for a table....

Got off early today.  I was really dragging at work after only getting a few hours of sleep.  Came home and took almost a two hour nap!  Felt pretty good!  I had put the a/c on upstairs before I laid down, so it's not too horrible hot up there.

Fire in my neighborhood

Can't see what it is, really, but you can see the outline of a person, might be my hubby, but could be the cop.  Ev got home from work and when he went to let the dog out saw something on fire across the street behind the house.  Turned out to be a mobile home/rv parked on the side and by the alley.  It was completely engulfed in flames.  He came in and told me to call the fire department, which I did, and I have to say I didn't do a very good job because I could not for the life of me remember what the name of the street was because it's a block over.  I've only lived in this town most of my life but I digress...  It didn't help that the dispatcher didn't even know what town I was calling from, but I guess that's because it was on my cell.  It seemed to take forever for the police and then the fire department to get here.  Thankfully no one was hurt.  I was surprised at how QUIET fire is, at least until it starts popping windows and stuff.  Luckily no gasoline or propane exploded.  If someone had been in it, they would have been a goner.  It went up fast and it burned hot.  And stink!  My eyes are still burning from the smoke.  I have to be up in a few hours, but I'm pretty wound up.  I woke the neighbors in the alley and Ev woke the house that the rv was parked in the yard at.  Neighbor in the alley has a garage and driveway back there with his truck in it.  He moved it right away, but I'm guessing the garage will have some melted siding on it.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

This is what I got in my inbox









Do you think I'm going to take this seriously?  You betcha!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Twenty minutes equals 14 fabrics equals 7 potential blocks...

I went upstairs at 9 p.m. to pick out a few fabrics for the 36 patch blocks.  I immediately gravitated to my purple fabrics (imagine that, since purple is one of my favorite colors...).  I picked out 14 fabrics, 7 pairs that will contrast nicely.  I went back to cmq's website and re-read what I would be needing for a king size quilt.  Oh boy.  The king size quilt must be 8 blocks across by 9 blocks down as she has it listed as having 72 blocks and measuring 108" x 96".  If there were no repeated fabrics that would mean 144 fabrics would be needed.  Now, I'm not saying I don't have 144 different fabrics because we all know I do, it's just a question of if I can put together enough contrasting combinations to come up with a nice selection.  I think there will have to be some repeat fabrics, but not necessarily any repeat blocks.  And just because I started pulling from the purple bin doesn't mean it's just going to be a purple quilt!  I just started with my favorites, that's all!

I wish I could have stayed upstairs longer, but it was just too hot.  I had the a/c and the fan on, but it had been hot up there all day and that little a/c unit couldn't have cooled it off for the short amount of time I was going to be up there without having been on for hours.  Tomorrow I think I'll bring some of the fabrics downstairs and cut chunks of what I need and press them, then cut some strips.  I'm just going to make this a fun project and do a few squares at a time.

Talked to my uncle tonight and we are planning to go to dinner tomorrow right after I get off work.  Haven't been out to dinner with him in a while, not since I got sick a few weeks ago.  We are going to the local diner that has pork chops on special on Thursdays.  I know he will like that!

Had a nice visit with Nick tonight.  I think he really enjoys coming over and going swimming.  I'm glad.  It's nice for me to have someone to swim with, too.  The pool is really getting a lot of use this year.  Tonight the water was the warmest it has ever been that I can remember.  It was 92 degrees!  Wow.

Sonny boy on his way home to swim

Nick decided to come home this evening for a dip in the pool and wants me to order pizza.  sigh.  Well, I guess I can do that, although I want bacon lettuce and tomato sandwiches for dinner!  I'll just let him order what he wants and take home the leftovers.

I'm watching the news and just saw that tonight, the temperature at midnight is supposed to be 90 degrees.  Yes, 90 at midnight.  ugh.

Someone turn the air conditioning on outside, please...

Went home at lunch and had to force myself to go back to work! 

The more I think about doing the 36 patch block, the more I want to do it.  I don't think I'm going to use shirts though.  I looked at cmq's website again and at her blocks and I really liked the fresh and whimsical contrasting fabrics she is using.  I think I can come up with some really fun combinations from my stash with a lot less prep and brain work than using shirts! 

What I really should do with all the shirts I have is cut them into strips.  I don't think I would do all the sizes like Bonnie Hunter does, maybe even just doing 2-1/2" strips.  Or maybe do all strips in that size except for the backs and leave the back pieces whole.  I don't know.  Not something I'm even going to think about right now.

This morning when I was coming to work on Old Route 66, I had a scary moment.  Rt. 66 is just a 2 lane road for most of my drive.  It is striped, which is a good thing.  Well, coming at me was a cement mixer truck with vehicles behind it.  Behind me were a couple cars following fairly close, but luckily not too close.  The vehicle directly behind the cement mixer decides to pass and gets over into my lane, coming head on at me!  There was no time for this, with the short distance that was between us!  I put the brakes on and started to steer toward the (very slim) shoulder and ditch.  Fortunately the guy who was trying to pass changed his mind, because he got back behind the truck.  I'm also grateful that the people behind me were awake!  Incidents like this make me want to quit driving sometimes!

I know the tomatoes aren't quite as good as they will be in a few weeks, but tonight I'm going to make bacon lettuce and tomato sandwiches for dinner.  We can have those with chips and it will be an easy, no mess, meal.  I say no mess because I'm going to use microwave bacon.  Gotta love that stuff.  Don't love the price, but love the easiness of it!

Water temp was 90 degrees!

Yes, you read that right.  The water temperature in the pool was 90 degrees last night when I got in.  Considering the fact that this heat does not abate in the evenings, I'm guessing the temp is going to stay warm for a while. 

And it's just too hot to go upstairs and sew.  The little a/c window unit can't cool it off in these temps and I just can't sit up there when it's this warm.  It's making me grouchy.  I have decided to bring some fabric downstairs to cut for a project.  I'm thinking of doing the quilt along with crazymomquilts.  She has a 36 patch block she is doing that looks like a good project for me right now.  Ha.  Like I need another project.  I know, I know, the Roll Roll Cotton Boll is aging nicely in the corner....  (I'm BORED with it right now, cut me some slack!  See, told you I was grouchy...)  Anyway, I thought I might use some thrift store shirts and make a variety of 36 patch blocks that finish at 12". 

My hubby was supposed to work another grueling 12 hours in the factory in this heat today.  Yesterday was wicked to him and he came home completely drained, barely able to move.  I convinced him not to go in for the first 4 hours, which are not his shift but are the o.t. he was supposed to cover.  He will have to take a half point for that, but it's worth it in this heat.  He is supposed to work 12's the rest of the week, but we will see what happens.  One of the supervisors is telling the guys no overtime, jsut to work their straight 8 hours, but the other guy is being unreasonable.  No amount of money is worth his health.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

When it rains, it pours...

This seems to have been the season of repair and replace around here.  It kicked off with a bang when we had to replace the pool liner.  We all know the trials and tribulations that accompanied that adventure...

Then the washing machine gave it up.  Had to replace it, and in the spirit of things replaced the dryer too, since it is around 20 years old.  It's not here yet, but at least the washer is and I'm still using the old dryer, but I digress...

Yesterday I came home from work at lunch and when it was time to go back to work I could not get out of the front door.  Something had broken on the latch.  Replaced the lock tonight.

And then there have been the animals and the fleas...  Oh have there been the animals and the fleas...  After a total of 24 bug bombs, set off at two different times (yes, this was extreme over kill, but I wanted those bugs GONE), multiple baths for the cat (the main offender) and different medicines, we finally are rid of the nasty things.  I'm baring my soul here about them and I'm hoping that no one out there in blog land judges me for this problem.  We are not dirty people, in any way shape or form.  It's a bad year for them and once they get a hold it seems difficult to shake them.  But I do believe we are done now.  At least I hope so!

And then today another hit.  The television in the front room aired it's last.  Just as with the dryer, although the television is not 20, it has given us many good years so I cannot complain about it.  Well, I can complain but it won't do any good.

All of these things, plus the wage and hour cut at work have made for a wonderful (tongue in cheek here, folks) first half of 2011.  Let's hope that we have gotten all the unpleasantness out of the way now, huh?  Okay?  Good....

I will end with this comment.  If these are the worse things that are going to happen to me, I AM DOING PRETTY DAG GONE GOOD!  THANK YOU GOD!  amen.  :)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sunday equals hot sunshine

In an effort to get a little fresh air this morning before it got unbearably hot, which it did (heat index at 97 right now), I went to sit out on the front porch.  Ivy wanted to come out with me, but I had to keep her on the leash.  I'm going to try and teach her to stay up on the porch with me, but for now, the leash will have to stay on.  Ivy sniffed around a bit, then climbed right on up on the other half of the swing!  I had been gently rocking before she got up there and continued to do so once she got settled.  I think she liked it.

I finished the baby quilt this morning.  Just folded over the backing material for binding and free motioned the year and my initials in it.  Will post a picture later.  I am pleased with the end result.  Still planning to donate it to the poker run next month.

I started rearranging the sewing room today.  I want to have the one sewing machine set up with string blocks all the time, or something equally simple, so that I can do some mindless sewing whenever I want to just sew and not have to decide on what project to work on.  It was really warm upstairs, even with the a/c and the fan on, so I couldn't do too much at one time, but I at least have the machine set up on the table.  May go up and work on it a little more later if the rooms cool off some.

Now for something completely different...  haha.  When Ev and I were at the restaurant this morning, our neighbor and her boyfriend came in to eat.  Since it was very crowded and there were no empty tables, they sat with us.  Her boyfriend mentioned that his mom has some young hens and a couple roosters she wants to get rid of.  I texted my friend Barb from work because she lost her chickens to a fox or something a couple weeks ago.  I think she will probably go get them.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Saturday night

I'm pretty satisfied with the progress I made on the baby quilt today.  Spent almost three hours machine quilting on it today.  I did all the quilting in the colored areas and started quilting the leaf and vine pattern in the black areas.  I'm about halfway finished with it and if all goes well will finish it tomorrow.

I also cut out the pattern for one of those little dolls I made a few years ago.  Just got the bug to make another one.  This one is out of shirt material because the color seemed right.  Hope it holds up as a doll.  Maybe I'll make a tiny doll quilt that matches the one I'm working on now and donate both the quilts and doll to the poker run Ev's helping with next month.  Maybe.

Such a nice morning

Here in the Midwest we are experiencing a very hot summer.  Yesterday and today have been a little less hot but tomorrow we are supposed to get right back up in the high 90's and into the 100's for several days in a row.  I'm taking advantage of this break in the weather to sit outside this morning on the deck and just enjoy some fresh air and the slight breeze that blows once in a while.  Ivy is investigating a noise she just heard that sounded suspiciously like a squirrel jumping from the tree to the roof!  We have a pecan tree in the back yard and a sweetgum tree in the front so the squirrels use the roof as their highway.  It's kind of neat to be upstairs in the sewing room, which looks out over the front porch roof towards the sweetgum, and to hear, then see a squirrel heading one way or another.

Ev says he has to work again tonight, but since it is Saturday there is always a chance they will call him off.The guy needs a break from this heat.  That factory gets unbearably hot.

I have been working on machine quilting the baby quilt.  Unfortunately I find myself also getting bored with it.  I'm blaming this on the fact that I'm just not that nuts about this quilt.  Here's as far as I have gotten on it:

I've got about half of the quilting done in the colored areas.  Still not completely decided on what to quilt in the black.  Leaning toward a vine of leaves, since the colored area has the flowers in it.  Donna came over last night and commented that my machine quilting was getting better and that really really made me feel good!  Thanks, Donna!  She brought over what she is working on.  It's pieced blocks with frogs and dragonflies.  I like it a lot!  She has a couple more rows to do then the borders.

My nephew's birthday was this past week and my brother is having a party for him out at my dad's tonight.  If Ev is working it will just be me going to the party, and maybe Nick.  I doubt Johanna and Ben would come.

My neighbor just walked over, so I'm going to visit for a while!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Pretty purple

Or maybe they are blue.  I know these are just weeds, and this picture doesn't do them justice, but I have always thought these flowers were pretty, even if they are weeds.  Just my opinion.

Got in the pool for a few minutes tonight.  Nick showed up right after I got in, so I didn't stay in it too long.  We moved the swing up to the front porch and I put the new cushions on it.  I took the cover off the middle arm rest and brought it in.  I'm going to make a new one, using the old one as a pattern, I think.  It won't match the cushions, but that's okay.

Lori came over for a bit too.  We went to Dairy Queen.  I should not have done it, but I got a medium chocolate malt.  My willpower has just gone out the window.  I need to get it back, and quick!

Washed a couple more loads of clothes, including some sheets and bedspreads.  Really liking this new washer!  Showed Ev how to work it when I came home for lunch today.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

My new washer is here

It's finally here!  No more trips to the laundromat!  See how much taller it is than my old dryer?  I'm anxious to get the new dryer, too, but in the meantime the old dryer is working, thankfully.  I've had a marathon laundry session this afternoon and evening, mostly thanks to Nick for bringing his clothes over!

I went to the vet today and picked up a new flea product for the dog.  It's a pill they take that is supposed to kill any fleas that bite them.  It's supposed to start working within 30 minutes.  At least I can give one of the animals some relief right away, I will.  The cat has to wait for a week and a half to have another dose of flea meds.  In the meantime I'm combing through her fur as often as I can.  Going to bug bomb the house again in a week.  This is driving me nuts!

Baked a chicken tonight.  Added the pieces of it, off the bone, to some noodles and gravy and green peas to make a chicken and noodle dish.  It's pretty good in my opinion.  I hope Ev likes it.  He's working until 3 a.m. tonight.

Having a heat wave, a tropical heat wave...

This heat is horrible!  Yesterday the heat index was 115 degrees!  It is not fit for man nor beast.  I'm ready for snow.  Yes, I have had enough of Summer, it can be Fall anytime now.  sigh.

Do not tell my husband, but I did not take the last pill of my antibiotics.  These were the nastiest pills I have had to take in a long time.  They made me sick to my stomach, and all that goes along with that, plus they messed up my sleep, and a whole host of other things.  yuck, yuck, yuck.  Do I sound like a spoiled child?  I don't think skipping the very last pill will make any difference one way or another at this late stage in the game, especially since this was my second round of antibiotics.  I feel like I'm about 80% back to normal and on the mend.

Ivy does not like the heat either.  She is a big black dog and I think that she just gets hot really fast when she goes outside.  I was thinking last night that Wrigley would really be suffering in this weather.  Last summer she had a difficult time with it, mostly because of her weight I believe.  And there's some guilt for me in that because I let her get fat...  At least she isn't suffering now.  I do miss that dog.  And I miss Nakia a lot, too.  These animals really get into your heart.

Didn't do much in the way of sewing last night.  Just caught up on my quilt journal/log.  I wonder if non-quilters have any idea how long it actually takes to do even a small project like a wall hanging?  When I sit down to sew I usually write the time on a scrap of paper, then when I am done I write the end time down, and a little note of what I was doing.  Then I transfer that info into my quilt journal when I get a chance.  Sometimes I will sit down at different times throughout the day, usually on a weekend, and when I add up the time it will be 5, 6, or 7 hours that I sewed that day!  And then there are the days I come home from work and just spend 20 minutes up there.

Worried about Ev working in that factory in this heat.  He said it was 112 degrees by his machine last night.  He was supposed to work overtime but the supervisor told them all no o.t. in this heat.  8 hours is long enough!

I made meatballs last night for supper.  They were really really good!  Put them on some rolls I had in the freezer with some spaghetti sauce and cheese.  Made a nice sandwich for supper.  I made a total of 36 meatballs and put the extra in the fridge.  I think I'll made a cream sauce later in the week and have Swedish Meatballs one night.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Freemotion on the baby quilt

Here's a couple pics of the free motion quilting I'm doing on the baby quilt.  I think they look like little flowers connected by a squiggly line.  I'm going to do this in all areas except the black.

Made spaghetti tonight for supper.  Also made a big batch of macaroni salad so Ev could take it during the week with sandwiches to work.

Went to Arthur yesterday and met my friend Mary.  We went to all the shops I like and had a good time.  I think she liked the wall hanging.

Friday, July 8, 2011

How much is that froggy in the window?

The other night I was going down the basement and happened to look out the back porch window and saw this little frog just hangin' around!  It cracked me up!  I had to take this picture and show Ev because those little peeper frogs drive him nuts.  I like the little buggers.  heeheehee.

Went over to my uncle's tonight.  He called to say he had a few extra cucumbers and asked if I wanted them.  I took him some Italian beef that I made for supper and a couple of onion rolls.

I was upstairs sewing when he called but I was at a stopping point.  Probably won't get back up there tonight again.  I was doing some free motion quilting on the baby quilt.  I decided to do a leaf pattern in the black borders but couldn't figure out what I wanted to do in the other parts.  Settled on a small flower connected by gently curving lines.  Decided to so the flower sections first because they were in the center, and work my way out to the borders.

Tomorrow morning I'm meeting my friend from up north in Arthur.  Originally she and I were going to take our daughters to the outlet mall in Tuscola and spend the night.  Then I got sick and we had to change the date, then the girls couldn't go.  So we changed it from the mall to the Amish shops.  I'm pretty sure she will like that a lot better.  I know I will!  We probably won't spend the night.

I finished putting the hanging sleeve on Thing Two and put my initials and the year on the back.  Thing One isn't completely done yet, but I'm going to wait to give that to Johanna when her and Ben move next month.  Thing Two is going to my friend tomorrow.  I hope she likes it.

I have got to get back on my diet.  This weight just creeps up on me when I'm not dieting and I'm afraid for my health if I get as heavy as I was again.  If I could lose the 20 I gained back, I would be happy to stay there.  It's not an ideal weight for me, but it was good enough to keep my blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar numbers in check.

Going to have to work on cleaning the basement a little bit Sunday.  My new washer will be delivered next week and the guy is going to have to get through the maze somehow!  sigh.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

How old do you think this is?

Seriously?  A vending machine for "Exotic Plastic Laundry Bags"?  In "Happy Designer Colors" no less.  This vending machine in the laundromat is probably older than I am!  I went to wash three loads of clothes tonight and brought them home to dry.  I did not bring them home in an exotic, happily colored, laundry bag.

Ordering new appliances

Ev and I went and ordered a new washer and dryer today on my lunch hour.  It is fun because I think having a new washer that I desperately need is a good thing.  It's terrifying because of the cost.  But we need to have them.  The dryer is still limping along, but it has had some major issues in the not too distant past, so we went ahead and bought the pair.  The washer will be delivered next week and the dryer at the beginning of August. 

I didn't sew last night but I was up in the sewing room brainstorming.  I had the white board and marker out and was playing with different designs for the quilt I have pinned and ready to roll.  I'm thinking of putting leaves in the borders.  That's about as far as I've gotten....  haha.

Doc called in another round of stronger antibiotics for me yesterday.  This is ridiculous how long I've had whatever this is!  It's going on three weeks and I'm sick of being sick!  The first round knocked out the bronchitis, but then I still have some kind of sinus thing going on, so hopefully this second round will zap it.  Anytime now would be fine...  UGH.

While Ev was up here at lunch time we went to Wendy's to grab a bite.  I ordered that new berry and grilled chicken salad.  It was very good!  I put stuffed peppers in the crock pot this morning, so luckily dinner will be done tonight when I get home. 

Having dinner done is good because I'm going to have to go to the laundromat tonight right after work.  I think I'll take Ivy so she can terrorize any other people there...  haha.  I think I might make that noodle and bean dish I made for Nick a long time ago.  It was a cross between a soup and a casserole.  If I remember correctly, it was better the second day, so he will be happy to get it tomorrow when he stops by.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Washing machine blues

I think my washer may finally have died.  It got stuck on a cycle and wouldn't go any further.  Sigh.  Just what I need to do right before the tax bill is a washing machine.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Good puppy

Ivy was such a good puppy tonight.  I wanted to sit outside and watch the fireworks that our neighbors shoot off.  I was concerned that Ivy would tear stuff up in the house, because she seemed nervous last night from the noise.  I brought her outside with me on the deck so she would be by me and maybe not be so nervous.  I was worried, though, that the noise would be too much since we were outside.  Well, she was just about the best dog ever.  She just laid down next to me and watched the show!  It was so cute, to watch her head follow the fireworks into the sky.  She didn't bark or whine at all, except when someone would walk outside the fence, she would bark then, but that's what she always does.

I spent some time up in the sewing room today.  Thing One and Thing Two are both bound and I have the hanging sleeves ready to be attached.  That is hand work I will do one night this week while watching t.v.  Johanna chose Thing One for herself, so I'll be taking Mary Thing Two as a gift.  Oh, and I need to label or sign them.

I also pin basted the baby quilt.  I've got the bobbins wound and the machine threaded and ready to start machine quilting on it.  This is another leap of faith - I'm going to 'just do it'!  ha ha.

Nick, Johanna and Ben were all here this afternoon.  Ev grilled some steaks and big mushrooms.  I made the other trimmings.  It was a really good meal.  It was nice to have the kids home for a while.

Still fighting the flea fight.  Broke down and got a flea collar for the cat.  Also got a flea comb.  I put the collar on her this morning.  Tonight I used the flea comb and got a couple off her, but they were real sluggish, so I think the meds and the collar are working.  Ivy doesn't seem to have the issues that Shadow cat had.  The meds might be working on her better.  I sure hope so!  I'm not worried about the house being infested, because Ev vacuums constantly and I change the linens quite frequently.  If it continues to be a problem we will bug bomb the house, though.

Happy Fourth of July!

I hope everyone is enjoying the holiday today.  It rained overnight here and is still somewhat overcast.  I'm hoping it clears up enough so that people can get to go to the firework's displays.  I just go outside and sit on my deck and watch all the neighbor's shoot off their fireworks!  It's a lot nicer than having to go somewhere and fight crowds and traffic!  haha.

Ivy wasn't too thrilled with all the bangs and booms she was hearing last night, but she didn't get crazy or anything.  Just stuck pretty close to me.  I could tell she was nervous.

This afternoon the kids are all coming over for a cookout.  Even if it's raining, Ev can still grill in the garage.  We have some nice steaks and big portabella mushroom caps for the grill.  Also have some corn on the cob and I made macaroni salad.  Oh and of course we still have pie!  haha.  Good thing I made enough!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Miscellaneous pictures

 The picture above is of the old lake (again).  If you look closely you can see the mist rising off the lake.  I thought that looked really pretty.  It was raining lightly when I took this pic tonight.  I just love this lake.
 The picture in the middle is of the lake in the next town over.  This is the boat launch area, but around the bend to the left there used to be a beach that I would go swimming in when I was a kid. They raised the dam a few years ago and flooded the beach area.  You can still get to it, but it's just for fishing now, not swimming.
This was across the street from the last picture.  See how the mist is rising against those trees?  It was really pretty.

We had a nice day today.  Both kids were over for a while and we all got in the pool.  Didn't grill out as planned but decided to do that tomorrow.  While Johanna was here we picked out the binding for her wall hanging (she chose one of them that she liked best) and she helped me choose the backing for a baby quilt.

I put the flea meds on the animals right away this morning after getting them.  Sure hope they take care of the problem.  Got most of the laundry done today.  Have one more load, then the bed linens and I'm done.

It was really nice to get in the pool today.  It was the first time I had been in it this year.  The water was really really warm - 88 degrees!  That's how I like it!  Ev likes for it to be cooler than that so he gets a 'shock' as he calls it when he jumps in.  Personally, I get enough shocks all day long and don't want any additional ones!  haha.

Since it's close to the Fourth of July, a lot of people have been shooting off fireworks in the neighborhood.  I'm waiting for the people a few blocks over on the edge of town to shoot off their canon.  Yes, I said canon.  It's real.  And in my opinion, real stupid.  But hey, who am I?  haha.  I just pray no one gets hurt because they are nice people there.

Starting the day

I'm delaying getting in the shower and getting ready for church...  Just being lazy for a few minutes here before I jump into my day.  After church I'm going to run to Wal Mart and get some flea meds.  I can't wait until the vet opens on Tuesday.  Then I'll run past Rural King and get some bug bombs - they have a coupon this month on their calendar for them.  July must be national bug bomb month or something...  haha.  And I want to wash all the bed linens.  This may be over kill, but the thought of those critters just makes me crazy!  ugh!

Nick spent the night.  He's going to tackle the jungle in the alley today.  We have so much overgrowth back behind the shed, it's embarrassing.  The weather is supposed to be less hot (I won't say cooler because anything over 80 to me is warm!) today.  He can take frequent breaks and jump in the pool.  Ev offered him money to do this, although Nick would do it for nothing.  This way he has a little extra cash, which I know he desperately needs.

Well, I better get moving here.  Have to wake Ev up from his pie induced sleep!  haha.  That recipe is sure a keeper, by the way.  Very good pie!  Now today maybe I'll make strawberry rhubarb, or maybe strawberry shortcake, or maybe....

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Six pies and counting

I was a busy person today!  Here are six, yes six! blueberry sour cream pies.  This recipe came from one of the blogs I follow, Jo's Country Junction.  Here's a link to her recipe:
The pies turned out very good.  I took two of them to my dad's for a cookout this evening.  On the way there we dropped one pie off at my uncle's.  He was very appreciative of it, as always!  I also dropped one off at my friend Donna's.  She in turn gave me a plate with a little bit of the goodies she baked yesterday.  It had banana bread, banana pound cake, and banana bars with cream cheese frosting on them.  I haven't tried any of her goodies yet but they smell and look really good.

Nick and Johanna and Ben came out to the cookout.  Johanna and Ben didn't stay long at all.  Nick came back to the house and took a swim.  He's staying here tonight.  When he was sitting here petting the cat he saw a flea on her!  This is not acceptable at all.  I pay good money for the flea medicine from the vet for the dog and cat every month.  So, because I can't even stand the idea of fleas, I coerced Nick into helping me bathe the cat and the dog.  It wasn't as bad as it could have been.  Let's hope the buggers are gone now!  Might have to bomb the house just to make sure.  See what Ev has to say about it tomorrow.  He's out like a light right now.  Spent a lot of time on his bike today and I think the heat took a lot out of him.

Put the binding on one of the wall hangings today.  It just needs the hanging sleeve and it will be done.

Friday, July 1, 2011


...does Ivy have to eat pretty things?  This is what is left of a pillowcase that I rescued from Salvation Army a while back.  There were a pair of them, prettily embroidered pillowcases, that I just had to have.  I thought someone had spent a lot of time creating something so pretty it was just a shame to see them hanging in a thrift shop.  So I took them home, washed them, and have been using them ever since.  Well, now Ivy has destroyed one of them.  I don't know why, but she decided that this particular pillowcase, which was on my pillow at the time, just had to be chewed on.  And of course she couldn't chew on it where there wasn't fancy work.  She had to chew on it where the pretty embroidery was.  I'm thinking I will trim it down somehow and save some of the pretty work and make it into a throw pillow.  Maybe. 

Went to see "Larry Crowne" with my friend Lori tonight.  I like Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts.  This movie was okay, but it wasn't as good as I thought it would be, especially with those two actors.  Tom Hanks plays a guy who gets fired because he has no college education and can't move up the ladder at a super store.  He goes to college at a community college where Julia Roberts teaches.  I guess it hit too close to home for me, working in the unemployment office, that I just couldn't enjoy it very much.  I see too many folks that get let go through no fault of their own.

So I'm laying in bed, on top of the covers, typing this on my laptop.  Ivy just jumps on the bed, on Ev's side, and scoots the quilts all off his side of the bed so that she can lay on the sheet!  Who does this dog think she is?  sigh.  Now the cat has jumped on my lap demanding to be petted.  I give up!  haha.