Monday, October 29, 2012

Not Good

Today I had a new idea for something to put on my living room wall, so I removed a hook that was already there.    It was one of the 3M Command hooks that should - and usually do - come off easily.   I've removed a bunch of them, no problem.   

Today there was a problem.     I made some garbled sounds and haven't quite figured out yet what to do about it.    But it is Not Good.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

I Got Mail!

I got a bloggy-prize package in the mail yesterday, from Selina at Selina Quilts -- a wonderful embroidered autumn-themed pin cushion (scarecrow, pumpkin, crow, an acorn, and more!),  and some bits and pieces of harvest-colored fabrics.    I can't wait to work those pretty colors into one of my projects!   (and what an unexpectedly beautiful day we had here -- I couldn't get a photo without shadows because of the bright sunlight streaming through my windows!)
I started trying to machine-quilt the edges of my pillow top -- nothing fancy, no "FMQ" in my near future, I just wanted to sew blocks to hold the batting still.    As several on-line tutorials have suggested, I tried using transparent thread on the top, with a bobbin of ordinary thread.   I am doing something wrong.    It seems to work well enough, but when I cut off the threads,  the line of stitches unravels, even if I've back-stitched.   Another problem is that the transparent thread gets tangled on the spool, eventually breaking.    I might decide to hand quilt both the pillow and the fish quilt if I don't figure it out soon.

My brother called today from the west coast.    His first granddaughter was born this week to my (only) niece!      He said he was surprised by how moved he was by her birth.    That made me laugh.   He has NO idea yet -- wait until he meets her!

I finally watched the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel today on Netflix.    A lot of things haven't seemed all that alright lately.    So it's good to be reassured that it's not the end.

Monday, October 22, 2012


My million projects are coming along.   I discovered Madame Samm's Blog Hops, and I'm busily working on my Holiday Pillow for the Blog Hop - it has to be ready to show sometime between November 21 and 30th (my birthday week!),  and - although I am not 'hopping' in this project, I am also making coin purses that I'll reveal during the UR Priceless Blog Hope from November 5 to 13.    
I also 'joined' a Quilt-a-long with 52 Quilts in 52 Weeks, and I've completed the first braid for my braid quilt.   I need to get to the fabric store tomorrow to buy my sashing fabric and, of course, I need to get the other braids done.    I think they will go more quickly than this one did, as I had lots of beginner's frustration and had to rip out more than a few seams along the way.   But, however frustrating the process, I'm happy with the way the first one turned out!    Just don't look into the bedroom I use for my sewing projects . . . it is beyond messy.
The weather here has been fine and chilly, although we had a sudden rain and hail storm tonight, and they are talking about temps in the 80's by mid-week.    I went to the shooting range today and did okay-ish.     I made vegetable beef soup for dinner, and have a squash in the oven, planning to make squash soup tomorrow.     Another knitted scarf is more than half-way done.   
 AND I voted tonight - I am eligible now for an absentee ballot, one of the advantages of being OLD! The cooler weather and early darkness seem to get me moving!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Just Another Day

What a day at work. A sad and frustrating start, in which I felt a patient's needs were betrayed and superiors were indifferent. But the day ended with a rebalancing, when I visited a very poor, very sick woman who was filled with peace despite her bleak surroundings, and listened as she told me how fortunate she is.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


What a pretty day.   I left the house at 6 AM, and the winter stars were bright in the sky.    Orion, my favorite, was high in the sky, almost over head.    I both love and hate seeing it there, because it is a sure sign of winter.    But when the sun came up, the colors were, again, stunningly beautiful, even at the local market and in the unkempt corners of my back yard.

And I saw the sweetest, most poignant thing at work.    I was visiting a senior residence (a genuine Old Folks' Home), and they had a 'Wish Tree' in the lobby.    The receptionist told me that it was put up as a project by a local student, who helped the residents of all abilities make a tag with their dearest wish.    I stood for several minutes, reading tags.    Some of them made me laugh -- one person wrote "I wish I had an elephant,"  and several wrote "FOOD!" People wanted world peace and "more money."   Some brought tears to my eyes.   "I wish that my cat would never die."   "I wish I had a boyfriend."    More than one wished to have their husband or wife back, or wished they could see their mom again.    I was touched by how similar we all are and bet that we could put that same tree in preschools and colleges and businesses all over the world, and the same sweet assortment of wishes would flutter on the branches.    It was a good reminder on this day of a presidential debate, that we are so very much alike, despite how different we sometimes are.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Project Overload

It is definitely autumn here in mid-Michigan.   
Although lately I've enjoyed all the expected beauties, colorful leaves, pumpkins and foliage, today it is cold, wet and dreary.     Definitely an inside day.     I have some taco soup simmering away in the crock pot, and I'm adding to the mess inside my house.

I am starting more projects, but nothing is near the finish line yet!     This week I received a wonderful package in the mail, a prize I won from Carrie at A Passion For Applique -- a wonderful pillow pattern, fabric, floss AND fuzzy yarn to finish it!    I love applique, I love embroidery, I am getting more confident at piecing fabric, so I can't wait to start this new project . . .

except that I really need to get a few of my in-process projects done first, lol!    My applique throw is moving along -- in fact, I've gotten to the Unknown Territory portion of this project, and will review a million youtube videos this week so that I can sandwich, baste, quilt and bind it.   I can already see that, as I've heard from many experienced quilters, I will look back with dismay at some of my fabric choices, but I'm committed to finishing it and plan to keep moving along until it's done.
I finished one knitted scarf and have a second one underway.    Both simple stockinette stitch, so nothing much to photograph.

I've made 3 little coin purses to fill the 3 frames I bought with the pattern.   More frames are on their way and I have a million ideas (and at least one purse in process) to fill them when they arrive.   I'll photograph them all when they're finished.

My Holiday pillow is moving along . . . slowly, but steadily.    Nothing to show until I sit down to sew.

And I'm getting in the habit of making wonky blocks from my scraps as the other projects proceed.   I'm not sure what I'll do with them yet, but I love seeing them stack up, and I expect they'll find their way into a throw or bag or something!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


What a beautiful day! Sometimes I just need to remind myself to stop and notice.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, October 8, 2012

Rolling Along

To my utmost surprise, I've actually completed a few of my projects -- has maturity and discipline suddenly hit as I approach my 63rd year?    So unlikely, but things are getting done nonetheless.
I finished my prayer shawl -- only a year and a half in the making! --and completed a washcloth and two change purses.   For those of you who (like me) didn't know, finishing projects is fun!   I might have to try it again some day.

My sister and brother both recently remarked that they might like to go target shooting with me so the pressure is one -- my sister has never shot before, and I'm hoping she will like it.    But for my brother, I need to be my best;  it would be very satisfying to hold my own with him since he's been shooting all his life in comparison to my less-than-two years.    I did pretty well at 15 feet,

but I need a LOT of work at 50 feet.

I think I need to get to the range a lot more often, and maybe it's also time to start doing the presidential debate thing and talking down my ability to shoot.   If my brother gets the notion that he should brush up on his skills, my plan is doomed!

I hope everyone is enjoying as beautiful an autumn as we are having here!   I was not happy to see frost on my rooftop this morning, but the colors are amazing!

Monday, October 1, 2012

New Month, New Resolve

I had to stay home this morning to wait for the Cable Guy.   It turns out that, after many service calls and nearly three years of service, the reason I wasn't having great luck with my service is that there was a 'trap' on my cable line, to prevent me from 'stealing' the service I've been paying for!    Incredible.    But, in that all's-well'that-ends-well way of things, it's fixed.   AND it turns out that I now get the Food Channel -- I may have to quit my job for sure, just to stay home and watch TV.

While I waited, I finished up one of my projects, at least to the extent I was able.   I got the little coin purse all put together (AND cut out another one!), now I just need to wait for the handle to arrive in the mail.    I've never put on a purse handle before, but I hope it will be as easy-peasey as I'm told it is!

After the Cable Guy left, I had a list of Intentions.   First I drove to the quilting shop for fabric, only to discover that it is closed on Mondays.   Saaaaaaad face.   Most of today's plans revolved around fabric.

So I drove to my local shooting range instead, and fired up the pistols.   I shoot two guns, both the same caliber, both the same manufacturer, but one is quite a bit heavier than the other.    I fired about a hundred rounds today.   I've only been to the range six times this year, but I shot pretty well.   I wish I'd remembered to retrieve my target so I could show it off -- all shots were in the black (of course), but more bulls-eyes than usual, if I do say so myself!
So the month is off to a decent start -- I'm willing to give myself a lot of credit, obviously, for very little.    Hurrah for low expectations!