going home

Posted on | September 28, 2012 | 10 Comments

This weekend we’re going to Indiana for my family reunion.  There will be relatives there I haven’t seen for years – some for decades.  It’s been over 25 years since I moved away.  There will be aunts, uncles, cousins – my cousin’s children’s children! – it’s hard to wrap my mind around.

It’s comforting to think of going home.  Being around people who have known me my whole life.  People who know my history.  People who love me because of who I am or even, just because I am.  People who may not know my day to day life very well (although facebook has changed that somewhat), but who know ME.  Know where I came from.  Know my history.  Share my past.

It’s something I took for granted when I lived there.  Part of being young, I think, you don’t realize how special and fleeting the sense of love and acceptance that comes from being HOME can be.  You grow up, you move on, you have your own family and you make your own home, but it’s different.  It can be wonderful in its own way, but different.

the yarn edition

Posted on | August 16, 2012 | 12 Comments

Like I said, I’ve been spinning…

700+ yards of three ply – Superwash Panda Fiber Sock Batts from The Cupcake Fiber Company.  I bought these in March 2011, can’t believe I waited so long to spin it!

400+ yards of chain plied Villain, March’s Hello Yarn Club fiber.  This is also a blend of superwash merino, bamboo and nylon.  These will be some awesome socks!

250ish yards of mystery wool with sari silk bits – no idea what this will be!

I don’t remember the yardage on this but I had 8 oz. of it, I think it was around 700.  Another Hello Yarn Fiber Club offering – Broken Things on Falkland wool.  One of these days I’ll knit up a crazy blanket with all my multi-colored handspun.  I certainly have enough of it.

Just to cleanse the pallet, here’s a picture of the boy practicing his guitar!  He’s going to be a junior this year.  I am dumbfounded.

Yet another Hello Yarn Fiber Club offering – Splendid on Romney.  This just wanted to be singles, although I hardly ever spin singles.  The staple length was really long, I think it’ll be lovely in something lacy.

And this is what I’m spinning now – Pate de Fruit on Rambouillet.  I’ve never spun Rambouillet before – it’s similar to merino I think, very bouncy and poofy.

Honestly, I’ll be happy when this spin is finished.  I think I might be all spun out.  I’ve reached that stage that seems to come at the end of every season – I don’t want to work on any current projects.  I’m bored with it all.  But since so much of my yarn is in storage (and I haven’t missed it! Shocker!), finishing up current projects is pretty much my only option.  Which is probably a good thing, but nothing to get excited over!

 

it’s been so long!

Posted on | August 13, 2012 | 14 Comments

The past two months have just flown by!  We finally got the house ready to be listed and it’s been on the MLS for a couple of weeks now.  No visits from prospective buyers yet, but August is notoriously slow for home sales.  We have an open house scheduled in early September, so hopefully we’ll get some traffic then.  If not, I may have to put an ad on my cat!

The first weekend I wasn’t doing house projects, I finished my mom’s birthday quilt.

I hope she likes it, it’s a smallish lap-size and I tried it out while hand-stitching the binding – worked well for me!

This was my first time to use polyester batting and I really like it!  I used hi-loft and it gives the quilt a nice poofy, bouncy feel.

Knitting has really fallen by the wayside.  Everything I was working on requires constant pattern referral and/or charts, and I’ve given up the loveseat to SB while he recuperates from bunion surgery.  I’ve been sitting in the arm chair, which isn’t large enough for me and my papers.  He’s 3+ weeks post-op, though, so I think it’s about time I reclaimed the loveseat!  I have been spinning though, and will post yarny pictures soon.

Ciao for now!

finished

Posted on | July 5, 2012 | 20 Comments

With two unfinished quilts, of course I took the supplies to begin an entirely new quilt with me on vacation!

Pattern:  Made in Cherry, resized to be 60×60

Fabrics:  Hodgepodge of all pink and orange fabrics in my stash, with solid Kona magenta and Denyse Schmidt prints for the back

My lovely niece requested an orange and purple quilt during my last visit home (I haven’t lived there in 25 years, but Indiana will always be “home”).  I asked if I could incorporate pink and she said yes, and I was hot on it.  I’m so proud of her.  She’s spending six months as an intern at Disney as part of a college credit program and if you knew Syd, you’d know this is the perfect job/experience for her!  She’s always been a Disney princess!  (and I mean that in the best way)

***

Posting will probably be even less frequent than normal because we’ve decided to put our house on the market!  Which is exciting and full of possibilities, but also a TON of work!  So far I have painted the den and my son’s room, had the antique bathtub reglazed (why oh why didn’t I do this before?  It’s gorgeous!), cleaned my closet, boxed up all my yarn (!!!) and most of my fiber, together with a ton of other things we don’t use on a daily basis.  Yesterday I stripped and cleaned the deck and we moved an armoire, china cabinet, large chair, dresser, and many boxes and tubs into storage.  Have to make the house appear larger, you know!  This weekend I’ll be restaining the deck (if the weather cooperates), and I still have a bazillion other projects to do.  So much so that even thinking about it wears me out!  But it’ll all be worth it if it helps our house sell quickly and for the most money.

I will still be doing some crafting to maintain my sanity; I need to finish my mom’s b’day quilt and the only knitting readily accessible is all the unfinished projects that have been languishing!  Yes, I purposely planned that so I would be forced to finish up some things.  I’ll let you know if it works.  ;o)

 

 

last weekend

Posted on | June 5, 2012 | 17 Comments

I had the house to myself and kept busy.  I finished my mom’s birthday quilt top and worked on a scrappy quilt, strip pieced from two jelly rolls.  I absolutely love this quilt – the waves of riotous color make me happy!  I followed these instructions, but used only five strips per block instead of six to save fabric.  This resulted in shorter lengths of one color and it was easier to see the pattern when laid out in waves rather than diamonds.  It’s so bright it’ll put your eye out, but I still love it!  I can’t wait to make another!

school’s out!

Posted on | May 23, 2012 | 14 Comments

I feel like I’m the one on summer vacation!  Except for the whole going to work thing.  But no more checking homework assignments on-line!  No more hounding the boy to work on projects!  And he passed chemistry and geometry!  Ah…bliss!

I’ve started a new quilt for my mother’s birthday in August, using Laura Gunn’s Poppy collection that I’ve had for about two years.  These are beautiful fabrics!

Here’s a peek.  I found a vinyl tablecloth with flannel backing for $5 and created a design wall in the bedroom on the only bare wall in the house!  I have a feeling the design wall will be up more than it’s down…  The picture stuck in the corner is my weight loss inspiration:

I’m guessing that was – oh, well thank you Santa, it was Summer ’03.  Nine years ago.  I can get back there, right?  Just going to take willpower and a lot of hard work.  To be honest with you, I’ve fallen way off the wagon.  I’m still holding the ten pounds I gained over the holidays and I’ve been so lax when it comes to working out.  There always seems to be some excuse – run errands instead, work through lunch to leave early on Friday, coming down with a horrific cold/sinus infection.  I have excuses for days.  But, I’m thinking about doing a 14 week challenge sponsored by Tom Venuto, whose books I’ve read and whose opinion I respect.  Grand prize is a trip to Hawaii, and I’m in it to win it!  And even if I don’t win the grand prize, I’ll finish with a better body and be back on the road to a healthy lifestyle.

And I guess now that I’ve blogged about it, I have to do it.

 

whirlygig

Posted on | May 15, 2012 | 17 Comments

A long time ago I bought a Botanica Encyclopedia and spent many hours one winter browsing its pages, taking notes on plants and flowers I loved and drawing elaborate plans for gardens I never planted.  I planned a white garden with night-blooming nicotania, a Mary garden with white and blue flowers, cutting gardens and more rose gardens than you can imagine.  One flower that struck me immediately was the African Daisy cultivar, Osteospermum Whirlygig.  With its pinched petals, it looked like a flower from outer space.  At the time, the only place that sold this particular cultivar was a garden shop outside London.  I had an upcoming trip to London for my daughter’s high school graduation present and tried to scheme a way to get the seeds (bringing back a live plant through customs was not going to happen) while we were there, but there were other sights to see and things to do and it didn’t happen.

A couple of weeks ago, I found it at Home Depot.  You’d better believe, I’ll be saving these seeds.

FOs

Posted on | May 8, 2012 | 18 Comments

Seems a finishing frenzy has struck at my house!

First I finished the upcoming birthday boy quilt:

and the back:

I quilted this before I got all brave with free motion quilting, so it’s meandering wavy lines using my walking foot.

Then I finished the quilt mountain!

Again, I quilted the main section of the top with wavy lines, but knew I needed something different for the plain sides – that’s when I decided to try my hand at free motion quilting.  Unfortunately, I didn’t allow for fabric shrinkage when I planned how much fabric to add to make the quilt queen-sized…I simply didn’t think about it.

It *barely* fits our bed!  Live and learn!  (btw – making this quilt required, for my enjoyment, purchasing a new bedskirt and new pillow shams, which I found for $12.99 each at Home Goods!  I couldn’t believe it, bed skirts were at least $45 everywhere else I looked.  Love a good bargain!)  I’ve made the bed every day since finishing the quilt.

I’ve also finished some small knitting projects – two pair of socks.

These flew off the needles.  I got the yarn (Trekking, old colorway) at the Destin Spin-In and love it.  I’d like a sweater from this yarn, actually.

Some say it’s manly, but I like it too!

Jaywalkers, from another yarn I got at the spin-in – String Theory Colorworks Continnuum in the Chlorobium Tepidum colorway.  Let me tell you, knitting these was addictive!  That little bit of cashmere (10%) goes a long way, the yarn was bouncy and soft and scrumptious.

And, that’s all the FOs, folks!  For now.  I have finally put together a quilt sandwich with this top from September 2010 and I’ve either lost the binding or never made it in the first place.  I think simple quilting lines and a black and white striped binding are called for.

it’s Macro May!

Posted on | May 1, 2012 | 10 Comments

Expect to be subjected to multiple random photographs!

I recently discovered the dry rub.  Can I just say – this is so easy and SOOO good!  The above collection of spices is for Jamacian Jerk dry rub, recipe found here.  Nothing too outrageous, I had all the ingredients on hand.  Slapped it on chicken breasts, let them sit for several hours in the fridge and then roasted in the oven.

Mmmmm!

Also – folks have wandered over from Vicki’s oatmeal post and I don’t think I ever posted the recipe here, so here ’tis:

My mix is:  3 cups regular oatmeal (not quick), 1/2 cup sliced almonds, 1/2 cup
walnut bits, 4 packets NuNaturals NuStevia (other brands might be sweeter
or less sweet) and 1 tsp. cinnamon.  I put it all in a quart size baggie and take it to work – put about 1/2 cup in a coffee cup and add hot water.  The mix lasts me about seven days, and I’ve calculated the nutrients to be 194 calories, 26 carbs, 7 fat, 7 protein.

In case anyone else comes looking.  ;o)

Just checking in

Posted on | April 30, 2012 | 14 Comments

to say hi!

I spent most of yesterday buried under quilt mountain!  This free motion quilting thing is addictive!  (the picture is horrendous but was too funny not to share)

More later!

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