Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Finished the Rag Quilt

I finished the animal print rag quilt. I wanted to give it to its recipients on Thanksgiving, but that didn't happen. They will get it this Sunday. I am glad to have it done.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Done At Last

Here is the finished dining room. We finished about 8 o'clock last night. It looks like I was drunk when I took this picture. I wasn't, but it is crooked. The chandelier actually hangs straight. When I came downstairs this morning and saw this room, I thought, "Wow, this room looks like our house now. No longer is it our furniture in someone else's house. Let's get started on the kitchen!"
I recycled the curtains that were already here. They are a little "fancy" for my taste, but they look good in the room, so they will stay. Here is my china hutch. It was my mom's. Then my older sister had it. Now I have it.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

I just want to wish all my friends a Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy your day.
Here is the dressing I made. I thought the colors were really neat together, so I took a picture.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Laura Cater Woods

Laura Cater Woods talked to the Fiber Arts Alliance of which I am a member last Thursday. She is a wonderful woman. She really got to know the audience in the two hours we were there and she spoke personally to every one. I found her very inspiring and have been looking at my plans for next year differently after meeting her. She gave a weekend long workshop, which I could not attend. However, if she is ever in town again, I will make every effort to be there. Rebecca attended the weekend workshop and you can read about it on her blog. I am excited about getting together for coffee with her and seeing where she is going with her new found inspiration. Anyway, the political quilt is coming out of my brain and onto paper and cloth. Last night during the 3 am feeding, I designed two in my head. Now I have to see if I still like them in the morning and if I can get them out of my head and onto paper.

WIP Wednesday

This week I will share a work in progress that is not a quilt after a quick update on my last two WIP Wednesday posts. I have not done anything with the batik piece, yet. Hopefully next week I will have the courage and time to mess with it. As for the rag quilt, it is almost done. I am more than halfway through snipping it. I will finish that today and wash it, so I can give it to its recipients tomorrow.

This week we started painting the dining room. Here is the before:
Here is the current state:
We are going to finish painting around the bottom in white. It is amazing how cold this grey looks next to my warm Sweet Persimmon. The chandelier will come down and this one will go in its place.
The old curtains will go back up. They are ivory and look fine with the new paint.

I took Debra's advice and we simply primed and painted right over the wallpaper. It really looks great.

Since that was so successful in the dining room, and Dave is on a roll, next comes the kitchen. It is going to be one of these tans in the third row with white trim and possibly white cabinets.
I am going to make red curtains for the bank of windows in the breakfast nook. I will also get new light fixtures for the kitchen and a new faucet. Also we will replace the drawer and cabinet pulls. Home Depot has just expanded their kitchen design center near us. I have not been in there yet because the parking lot is a mess as they expand the rest of the store. I am hoping they have more choices than they did in their old space. Certainly they expanded for a reason, right? Eventually, I want granite counters, but that is a while off.

Monday, November 20, 2006

What's in My Purse?

Rian wanted to know what us big purse women carry in our giant bags. So here are the contents of my purse...

For the kids I carry two sizes of diapers, a box of wipes, various toys including multiple vehicles, books, and games, two pacifiers, and some extra pieces of clothing like socks and hats. I also carry hair bows in the hope that one day my daughter might actually wear one for me.

For myself I have my wallet, my check book, lipstick, lip balm, various gift cards and coupons, always some piece of paper work from either the pediatrician or one of the schools or my daughter's medical study, and lots of pens. I also have my keys and cell phone at all times. I have only recently started carrying a lipstick. I never used lipstick until I moved south.

When I get ready to leave the house, I add juice boxes or sippy cups, fruit snacks, crackers, and sometimes the camera.

I just emptied a bottle of hand sanitizer and have not put the new one it, so that is one more thing.

My keys--we have three cars and two houses, each with two keys, so that is nine keys right there. Plus I have keys to the houses of my brothers-in-law since I water their plants when they are out of town. I have also been known to stick dinners in their fridges or other little presents for them or their wives during the day. I guess I do have a lot of keys.

I really love this diaper bag that my sister-in-law gave me. It has fabric from one of my favorite designers, Amy Butler. I made my sister-in-law a hand bag with this fabric in another colorway for her birthday after she had ordered this bag. I guess we have similar tastes.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

WIP Wednesday...a little late

Yesterday, I went to Rebecca's house to try out making my own batik. Apparently at one time I thought I might be Amish, and I had a surprising amount of solids in my stash. I decided to try out this teal one. Now, all I have managed to do so far is put the wax on it. But hopefully tomorrow I can discharge it and see how it looks. Drawing with wax was completely relaxing. I must have worked for over an hour just playing with it. Next time, and there will be a next time, I will have a plan.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Testing 1,2,3

Ok, I should have made the switch over. I am ready to figure out the new stuff. Maybe after everyone goes to bed...

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Sam and I are Blessed

I am overwhelmed at the moment, so this post will be very crazy, I am sure. The most beautiful quilt arrived at my house today. It was made by my blogging friends for Baby Sam. It came with a beautiful handmade book of inspirational messages, which I will photograph later and post. The quilt even contains a block made by me, which I think is very clever. Anyway, the people who worked on this quilt are... Deb H, Debra, Rian, Amy the Calico Cat, Barbara, Allie, Jen, Dorothy, Suze, Jane Ann, Kay, Deb G, and Granny Fran. I don't know what to say. Thank you so much ladies. And I need mailing addresses so I can send out thank you's.

The blocks are incredible. The quilting is exquisite. I would love to know who all did what on this quilt.

Sam has already laid on his quilt for a brief moment. He will spend more time on it after his siblings go to bed, as they tend to over-love him if he is on the floor.

I don't know what to say. I am overwhelmed. I have tears.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

WIP Wednesday on time

I have been working on my knitting. I tried the purl stitch. My first row looked awful. My second row looked a little better. I am going to try again tonight, I think.

Yesterday, inspired by Amy, I decided to work on a rag quilt. I have never made one before, but I bought this kit 5 years ago from The Unique Spool. I thought it would make a nice thank you gift for my brother-in-law and his wife for all the help they gave us while I was in the hospital. And, since I bought it so long ago and am using batting scraps, it is like it is free, except my time. (I feel my time is actually worth money, just like if I had a paying job. I think it is from billing time as an engineer when I was working.) I got all the pieces cut and layered yesterday. I hope to get all the X's sewn today and the pieces all laid out.

I did go out in the rain and vote yesterday. The kids had the day off school. I took the two youngest with me to vote. Thank goodness we didn't have long lines because both of them were fussy by the time I was done. I just wanted to let you know I did vote. I did not, however, do any of my other errands. I will do them today without rain.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Curious About the Metric System

When I was in elementary school, President Reagan told us we should all convert to the metric system. So I was taught the metric system growing up. We always used metric measurements in science classes. When I think units of measure, except in the sewing room and cooking and body weight, I think in metric. Temperature I can go back and forth on. Since I majored in materials science and engineering in college, I used SI units all the time. (And 1600K, 16ooF and 1600C are very different temperatures. Just ask a ceramic engineer.) My kids do not do only metric in school. They go back and forth, although science is mostly metric. In fact, the first project my son did this year was to convert the standard chocolate chip cookie recipe from metric to American units. (Are they American units? I don't even know what they are called.)

So I am curious about what units everyone else uses. Do you think in metric? Can you convert in your head? What units were you taught in school? Is your local pool measured in yards or meters? I think the only thing that every really switched to the metric system was the plastic Coke bottle.

Life Rolls On

Life is moving forward, so I had to get back at it this weekend. I managed to attend a soccer game and had a great time. A first grade boy saw the baby and said, "Wow! So that is why your tummy was so big." Thank goodness he went home with his parents to ask them how the baby got in there.

I have also started cooking for real again. Tonight's menu is beef roast, home made noodles, and whipped potatoes. The noodles are rolled out and drying. The roast is in the crock pot. I don't need to do the potatoes until later.

It is time to start painting this house. We will start in the dining room to get rid of the peacock wall paper. My task for the next two weeks is to come up with a color scheme. So I will be spending time at the Home Depot and looking through magazines.

Ok, life is calling me. Loudly!

Friday, November 03, 2006

WIP Wednesday...a little late

I am a little late with the WIP Wednesday. This week, I decided to learn to knit. I spend a lot of time at soccer games, swim practices, swim meets, PTA meetings, etc. Since my quilting is pretty much done by machine, and I really did not enjoy my short foray into crazy quilting, quilting is just not portable for me. Knitting, on the other hand, looks very portable.

On Tuesday, my best friend called to see if I wanted an outing to our favorite french fry place, Five Guys Burgers. These are great french fries. They are almost as good as Boardwalk Fries, for those of you who live in the Maryland area. (My husband assures me that they are not quite as good as Boardwalk, and it is not just the nostalgia factor influencing my opinion.) On the way, we needed to stop by a knitting store, Cast-On Cottage in Roswell, Georgia, so she could return a skein of yarn and pick up another one. Well, I fell in love with the yarn selection. Who knew there were these awesome fibers out there? (I am sure everyone but me knew.) So I got a book called Knitting Basics and a skein of sock yarn. But, I cannot knit socks, yet. So, my wonderful friend gave me a ball of yarn and some needles, and I have been playing. Here is what I have accomplished.

I know it isn't perfect. Heck, it isn't even very good. But I did it. And it was fun. And I am going to continue and get better. And I like it better than crazy quilting.

In other news... I am wearing my skinny jeans today. It feels pretty good. I may put on my new boots later, if we go out to eat.

One more note on Maryland food. (I think I am homesick right now. Anyone want to go to the Columbia Mall with me?) Ledo's Pizza. I agree with Oprah's friend Gayle on this one. She said it was the best in America. I love Ledo's Pizza. And they have now franchised, and the franchise pizza is as good. So if you are in Maryland, go have some Boardwalk Fries and some Ledo's Pizza, not together though, and think of me. Oh, and hit Holly's for some crab cake sandwiches. Ok, I am going to go eat some Halloween candy.