Monday, February 25, 2008

Way darker than in reality...

One Batik quilt...
What do ya know? Finally a picture. Not the best, but you get the idea. This hangs in my dh's store and goes in my son Joe's collection. All my quilts- that are not given away, of course, go into one of my kids' collections. So they have a few when they move out.
And this is me laughing hysterically that some of you think I might actually post a picture of frump girl...LOLOLOLOLOLOLLLLLOLOLLLLLL!!!!! Guys, I was horrified that the UPS man might see me thusly clothed- let alone imagining the prospect of immortalizing it for all of cyberspace... Um, thanks, but I don't think that's gonna happen. I never was a sucker for truth or dare!
However, I will succumb to a meme- just because it was Darcie who asked and I'll do just about anything for Darcie. I'm supposed to share 7 weird things about me... The problem I have is narrowing it down to 7 things- things I wouldn't mind the whole world knowing... rather like that frump girl. So I had dh help me with the list. At first, he was hesitant, but he got on a roll real quick, so quick in fact, that I might have to list some of his oddities- just to keep things even... Bill's list of Nines' weirdnesses:
  1. I completely freak out around spiders. I forget to breathe. (As a child, I had a bad dream about hundreds of spiders biting my fingers- the little black fuzzy ones that jump- and I've never cared for them since- I think I was laying on my hands wrong- they fell asleep, tingled and stung... it's logical, where my fear is not.)
  2. I love starting projects...finishing them, well, it's a real chore, but Bill says I am getting much better at it.
  3. When Bill walks by, I still growl. I try to keep it quiet, but after 20 years, he still makes my heart go pitter-pat.
  4. I'm ornery. I don't see where this is weird, but Bill put it on the list.
  5. I look at things in a unique way- if "everybody" does it, chances are, I don't. I question just about everything that I can think of to question. I'm miles from mainstream.
  6. I'm annoyed at cell phone towers. I didn't realize that I had this problem until I caught myself, with eyelids at half mast, giving the towers a dirty look. They're just so... ugly. It's not their fault. I'm trying to accept. I feel like the Jetsons. But I do LOVE water towers. Especially when they have the town name on them- my Meemaw lived almost under one and it said "BOOMER" on it. What a cool name for a town. Boomer, WV.
  7. Bill eats no vegetables. See? I got one in on him. Is ketchup a vegetable? I think not. A potato? It's a starch. That's it folks. Meat. potatoes. oh, and chocolate. A steady diet, for 40 years. The occasional apple, banana and watermelon thrown in. His cholesterol is great and he's as healthy as a horse. I wouldn't wish it any other way, but he gives me a hard time about eating all the vegetables and me being puny. Life is just not fair, ya know?

Well, there ya go.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

He's hot!

well, he's steamin', anyway. Look at those glasses. He was absolutely fascinated by my friend, Donna's, steamer.

This was just a funny picture I had and since I've nothing quilty to show...

I have been quilty, don't get me wrong, just nothing picture-worthy. I was hoping to get that batik up on the wall and snap a few pictures for ya... only to be hampered by the weather. It snowed. My friend Sandy was sweet enough to bind the batik quilt- by hand, no less, and then I get snowed in. I can see now that expectations are going to far out-weigh reality in regards to that silly quilt. Usually, I don't mind getting snowed in- one of my favorite things, but I was looking forward to meeting up with that quilt on a big ole wall. Maybe tomorrow. In the mean time, I have to tell ya something...

I'm a frump. It's official. Official with a capital F. Some days I just have to wonder, "Who dressed me?" Oh, that's right, I did it myself. See it starts like this:

  1. Knee socks- they go first, 'cause I'm cold. But, I think they're kinda cute- black, gray and purple stripes.

  2. Leg warmers- They're purple and they match the socks, right? Flashdance got nothin' on me. I'm stylin'.

  3. Really ugly slippers- some kid outgrew them. They're blue suede, fleece lined. Servicable.

  4. Now here is where I ruined the whole- I-got-it-goin-on thing. I still wasn't warm after 2 cups of tea... so I pull on a pair of dh's long johns. You know, that dingy "natural" color. Completely hides the "hip" leg warmers and socks. My legs look like...timber. Ever heard the term, "log-legs?"

  5. Denim skirt- 'cause no way will any of my pants fit over those bulky thermals.

  6. Green, long-sleeved shirt. One cuff was comin' unraveled so I obsessively picked out the other cuff-so that they'd match. Be even, ya know.

  7. I have to wear an apron or... well, I'd stain my "pretty" clothes. This one happens to be red and have ducks wearing overalls all over it. One of my favorites.

  8. Still cold, so I put on a navyblue fleece jacket. Buttoned up to my chin.

  9. Feel the need to add a Chinese red silk scarf- 'cause I feel a draft. Tie it around twice and stuff it down into the jacket- ascot style.

  10. Accessorize it off with a pair of snips on a royal blue ribbon that's seen better days.

See? Official frump. Might even be worse than frump and vere towards "bag lady" status. What's a girl to do? Pray for Spring!! Surely I have some cute summer clothes!!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The computer and I have been getting along rather well over the past couple days... trying not to get used to it! I have found a more reasonably priced satelite service, and I am thinking to use part of my tax return on that. My oldest son, Joe, has flown the coop for a week and so I have had a little extra time, online. I'd still rather have him home, it's just not a fair exchange. He is visiting family friends in Alabama. Coincidentally, he will be gone over Valentine's Day...hmmm. Wondering if I should be suspicious? Is love in the air? Men! they just don't share like we girls. Of course, he will also be gone over President's Day, and that doesn't arouse any suspicions. I don't figure he has any political aspirations.
Amidst my industrious time in the quilting room, this wallhanging arose from the depths. A cooperation between my friends, Jean, Tanya, and me. I am sure Tanya helped Jean choose the fabrics and the pattern, Jean did the sewing and then it came to me. For several reasons. You see, this inner, woven panel- which measures about 30 inches was made as a backing for a jacket. Jean decided she was tired of making jackets and so it came to me. I didn't have the pattern, but even if I had, I rather doubt I'd have made a jacket out of it. I am just not that fond of making wearables. Plus pink and green... not really my colors. She also gave me all the coordinating fabric, and it has been sitting in my stash for a couple years. Waiting to be "finished." She really did a great job, the little blocks are just 1"x2".
I put the tiny inner border on it(I love this method of framing a quilt- you cut a 1 1/4" strip, iron it in half, lengthwise, and sew around the quilt top- you don't fold/press it out but rather leave it laying on the quilt top, then add another border. Easy.) and then I found some batik(I know, you're shocked) in my stash and made the outer border. It'll make a nice walhanging. For who? Well, it's not my style really. I like it fine, but it has several metalics in it and I am more of a galvanized steel/iron kinda girl. Gold, not so much. My sister has elegant tastes. She might like it, but I am never sure about what she likes, you know? And a wallhanging... well, it isn't like a quilt- it is a displayed peice... so I am filled with doubt about it's final destination. I could give it to her as a table topper, but then you don't notice the overall pattern. But the top is finished and the backing and binding, made. It'll be a quick quilting project.

Speaking of quilting, I recently visited my friend, Sandy, and used her deluxe(APQS) quilting machine. I have a Gammill, but it is a dinosaur. I always say that in hushed tones, lest it hear me and rebel against me. But it's true. No stitch-regulator. No motorized advance. Just a very basic machine. It suits me well. But, Sandy and I thought we'd have a play day, together. She is relatively new at quilting and likes to watch others- don't we all learn a lot that way? So I started quilting that batik quilt. I am about half way done, and hope to finish it up, this week. My DH has a "Grand Opening" for his Habitat For Humanity store, next weekend, and I'd like to display it then. Things I learned:


  1. The double-sized bobbin in a Gammill is wonderful. But if you didn't know the difference, maybe you wouldn't miss it as much. I missed the bigger bobbin.
  2. The motorized advance is a sweet thing.
  3. Stitch regulators are an acquired taste. I see the benefit- but it is a huge adjustment to make when you are not accustomed to it. There is a good bit of drag and my concentration was distracted. But how cool to be able to put the needle pretty much exactly where you want it! Now if I could only figure out where that point is! Like anything new, it's a learning curve.
  4. Gammill has a larger sewing area, something else I missed.
  5. Zipper leaders are sweet, indeed. My next quilting investment, for sure. How cool is it to sit in your recliner and pin on a quilt. Who knows? It may even become something I enjoy. And I didn't finish my quilt- no biggy, just unzip and stash for next week. Way cool.


Hope everyone is enjoying their day. I hope you can get a little sewing in- doesn't the day seem just a little better when we get a chance to do that?

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Nag, nag, nag...

Do my girlfriends actually think that I wouldn't show them a picture of that batik quilt, if I had that option? I assure, nothing could be further from the truth! I am having internet problems. I really wanna show you, honest! After 10 attempts, over a 10 hour period, I finally got one picture uploaded. It's enough to take the fun out of the entire thing. I had the boys help me take a picture of the batik quilt, but it has been so dark and gloomy here lately, the picture turned out too dark- it just needs more light.

This quilt is bright enough to stand on it's own during gloomy weather. I bought this top at an antique shop, for my birthday. I am not sure what the pattern is, are you? It's kind of unusual- ALL inset seams. It was all hand-pieced during the 1950's- it's actually labeled! (Thank you "Grandmother P.") I quilted it, last weekend. Just big ole random baptist fans. Utilitarian. I even got the binding on and now I have a Valentine's Day quilt. It's bright and cheery and I'm liking it. While my time at the computer has been a study of...frustration and patience, my time in the quilting room has been stellar.

I've been in a "just deal with it" mood. Ever do that? Stop your whining and do it! First, I decided that I needed to go through my stash of quilt tops and organize them. I now have 12 quilt tops, with the properly sized backings, all ready to go onto the frame. I had the backing fabrics, but most of them needed to be pieced, and let's face it, one more step in the way of quilt-finishing-progress, I didn't need. I even made binding for most of them. I measured the tops and pinned the size to them, so when it comes time to quilt, it'll be easier to get going to that.

Then I have been finishing quilt tops- I am surprised, then again, not so surprised, at how many quilt tops I have that are "almost" done. Just need borders, or all the blocks are finished and need putting together. So I have been chipping away at that. And I have gotten several done. I have a bad habit of getting tired of a project once I can literally see how it is going to turn out. The mystery is gone, so it gets stashed on the shelf, half-forgotten. I have been doing alot of mental knuckle-rapping over the past week- no new projects until some of the old are done. I need a new project like I need another hole in the head. So I got the tunes crankin' and I'm crankin' out quilts. Speaking of cranky...

(I would like to seague- for just a moment and say, "NETZERO, IF I WERE A KILLER- YOU'D BE A GONER!!" It would be a crime of passion, to be sure. Am I living in America? Why can't I get DSL? "VERIZON, NORTH HENRY COUNTY DESERVES DSL!!" Dial-up is for the birds! No, I don't feel any better. Do any of you have connections with them? sigh. Just so aggravating. I know they can't control the weather and Verizon's fried phone lines and power output is governed by laws... I am learning so much useless information. And all I want to do is upload a picture during normal business hours. Am I being unreasonable? I am paying for highspeed connection that is only available for mere seconds at a time- a refund would be reasonable. Just hope that little temper tantrum diatribe gets snapped up on somebody's search engine! And then, the only other option is satelite- guess what happens during high winds to that? Yep. Guess where I live? On a high prairie that is continually pommeled by high winds- especially during October through May... at $80 a month for that...Different boat, same story and I am starting to get sea sick.)

Am I as grouchy as I sound? Only with the internet. And so I am headed back out to my "happy place." I have 300, 2 7/8" blocks that need squaring up. I'm gonna deal with it!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Liberating dedicated fabric...

Try saying that fast, five times in a row.

My Dad is an electrician. I know what a dedicated circuit is. You know, it's that special plug reserved for a special appliance requiring a bit more than usual juice, like the frig or a computer system. I have fabric like that. See, I start a project, in this case, a batik quilt. I gather up fabrics from my stash that I like together. Maybe acquire a few more. I keep them in a box, dedicated to the project. Now, it takes me a while to get from beginning to end of a quilt. This quilt has been in the works for about 9 months. As the months pass, I keep opening that pandora's box, tempted to sneak out one of those lovely peices to make a postcard or maybe a table runner... but I just can't allow that, because what if I run out before the dedicated quilt is finished? I'm pretty sure I have more than enough, but what if...? That would be a tragedy, for sure. So I sigh and close the box, promising myself, I'll get that quilt done sooner rather than later, because I've thought up all kinds of new mayhem for that there batik! Finally finished the top yesterday. WOO-HOO!! And you know what that means. Yep, all these lovely batiks can go back in the stash! It's a fairly large bucket of fabric, quite a winfall for the ole stash. And its amazing to see how new the fabrics look when not in the light of the old project. Sigh. Life is good.