Thursday, June 30, 2011

Another finish from the 2011 i-Challenge

I have to admit this had a little more substance then the other three I crossed off the list during June.  My goal was to complete 3 projects from the 2011 Challenge in June and I might have taken it down to the wire, but I completed FOUR!   

Little House Needleworks - Needle and Thread

When I bought the pattern, linen and floss, I didn't buy the pillow/bed to finish this with.   The navy blue, while pretty, is not a color in my house.   I wanted to finish this with a fabric that will match my decor.   I may have a little problem trying to calculate the dimensions.   I figure I will look around the internet and get some ideas or maybe even find a how to.

Need to pull more fat quarters from my stash

A weekend of extremes

Last weekend was a weekend of extremes - extreme emotions that is....
First, since Mr. Wonderful is still galvanting about the country doing his volunteer work, all the house and yard work falls to me. So Friday, the emotions were tired but a good tired and feeling of pride after the yard was edged and mowed and beds were weeded.

Saturday morning, the emotion was excitement, team pride and feeling good by participating.  I did a 5K for work for the Blood Bank. Enter the feeling of exhaustion.  We had a team made up of all the us on the third floor - we were Team Vain - an adaptation from our original name - the Varicose Veins! Here is the shirt we made - our team placed first for theme and second for spirit.  Feeling some team pride!  We felt creative when we unveiled the shirts we sprayed with a faux evening gown look that we each decorated differently. 

The team with the most points at the end of the summer blood drive gets an extra day of vacation. WaHoo! We were thrilled.  We sang Carly Simon's You're so Vain and we "gavotted" in just like in the song. That illicited the emotion of silliness!

Mid-day found the emotions of excitement and concern and sadness and anticipation but I will come back to this....

Mid-afternoon, the emotions were concern, apprehension, feeling of helplessness. My son-in-law decided to travel from near Boat House Row in Philly to the beach by my house in a one man kayak. It is a thirty mile trip. We were tracking him with google maps from his phone but even with the solar charger his phone lost its charge. All the roaming I think. The emotion of tense entered as I baja'd in a PRIUS (it was like a comedy episode of  Ethel and Lucy, trust me.  Me in yoga capris and a Vera Bradley visor and my daughter a nervous wreck and my son telling me not to stray off the path because it was a straight drop into the lake!) through the twists and turns of the dirt trails that lead through an abandoned military base on the river. It was a 15 minute drive in. Desperation quickly turned to exhilaration when we saw Mickey round the bend in the shoreline a mere minute after our arrival on the beach. Concern came next when my daughter and I were afraid he would not call it quits and he would wish to continue the last three miles. At the rate he was going, 3 more miles would have been 3 hours and it was getting dark.  He was ready, he came ashore, we deflated his kayak and got him some fresh water.  He was drained we were relieved.

Their modes of transportation!  Her bike and his kayak. I caught these crazy two being silly kayaking on the sidewalk.  I am happy there are being safe applying the sunscreen.
 Sunday came the emotion of excitement again - friends with children were coming over for a cookout. We were all satisfied after all the good food.
savored the smell of bacon and onions cooking up for my beans
mouth watering berries, yum

beans in the crock pot simmering
pasta salad

Little nervousness while Iris pet the fish.   Don't fall in Iris!
The weather was also great and I love the feeling of nostalgia I get when watching the curtains being blown by the breeze. Don't know what I am nostalgic about the look and the sound of the breeze blowing through the curtains but I am.  I reminds me of simpler times.  It also gives one a feeling of peace and hominess.

And now back to the mid-day Saturday emotions of concern. After months of not knowing what to do; of falling further and further behind in his bills and mortgage due to being out of work 24 of the last 48 months, my son has made the gut-wrenching decision to short-sell his house. Part of the reason is because his wife, his source of love and pride, (mix his emotions with mine) has a huge grant/fellowship opportunity for a Masters/PhD program at Penn State, State College PA. It is too good to pass up and the decision was not made without a myriad of emotions on their part.

Nothing says it better than a u-haul filled to the max.

 So after all the ups and downs and twists and turns of last week, I took to the solitude after everyone left on Sunday evening and had time to reflect and just mellow out under my newly illuminated pergola while I sipped on a nice cup of coffee.  Pergola is not new, adding the lights is.   Enter serenity after a full weekend.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Quilt Block

 From this
 to this
 and then this
 and next
 some seams sewn perfecte\ly
 and some are a bit off
 with very little waste
fun afternoon

I-Challenge Finishes

I almost feel guilty taking credit for this first one. Yes, it is part of my 2011 challenge but it was super easy to work on the large count. Pine Mountain - October pillow.   I just need to get a pillow form for it.

The next, Just Nan's Needle Tweet - Daisy. It's a cutie and since it is just a little bit of a thing, it too makes me feel like it pales in comparison to some of the BAPS others accomplish in the same amount ot time.

And here is what I am working on now.   I have been in love with this LHN since I first saw it.   I didn't buy the accompanying pillow when I bought the pattern so finishing will be interesting.  I debated about ordering the pillow insert but think I will be happy finishing in a color to match my decor.  

Sunday, June 12, 2011

A Finish...

I can cross another i-Challenge off my list.   Here is Bless Beyond Measure from Blue Ribbon Designs.    I am loving it!  This will fast become a staple to my stitching bag.    I knew all along what fabric I was going to use to line the little pocket.   Of course, in true Robin fashion, I could not find it and was growing more frustrated looking in the same places over and over again.  Did I think it was going to just appear in one of my stacks?   Anyway, I picked a second choice and proceeded with finishing and I am happy with the result.    All the while I was finishing  I knew no sooner would I be done that I would *find* the fabric I was looking for somewhere safe.  Quick kudos to Belinda at Blue Ribbon Designs for her superb finishing directions. It made it a breeze to put it together.

This is the fabric I had in my mind I would use.
Fast forward to a visit with my sister. She was showing me her queen size strip quilt that I helped her get started ---sorry, no pixs----it is beautiful!----I'll work on her getting me a pix---- anyway, there it was....scraps of my fabric sewn into her quilt! Her quilt is mainly beiges, browns, olives, blacks and whites. One piece of black had a salmony kind of flower on it. I gave her the rest of my fat quarter to help make the flower pop.....and it did. Thanksfully, she had the quilt to show me or I would have spend a large portion of today looking in the same places 3, 4, 5 times knowing it was there! Haven't we all done that before?  

It is hard to get a good pix of the lucite 3 x 3 marker.

For today, I had hoped to finish the power washing on my desk but it is threatening storms so I am off to my sewing room. Oh drat, I have to sew and craft!  Darn it.  I am sew far behind on my Block of the Month club. Laugh will you! How can one get behind one a silly little block of the month? It is easy, trust me. I went amuck with the April block and had to start over. May is a bad crafting month since I spend 9 days away from home on two different trips. So come June 1st, I had not completed my June block. Between last weekend and this, I managed to get April reworked - both the class block and my 'sister' block.
My sister block in Civil War fabrics

April's class block

May's class block
    And am in the process of putting together my May blocks - both the class and mine.  .....then on to June's block(s)!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


I found my DMC 815.....I subscribe to the philosophy that when you can't find something - stop looking and then it comes to you.   Well it worked and I have my #815.    But here's the rub....seems I must have substituted another color in place of the 815 and I couldn't match it to anything in my floss you got, I frogged.   No worries, that'll teach me to not mark my patterns right away with any changes to the suggested fibers!  I am now further than I was before the big hunt for 815.

My approach to the Delaware Memorial Bridge.   The uprights are barely visible in the June haze.
So what do I pass on my way to work yesterday? The plane from the imfamous Miracle on the Hudson flight was parked at the base of the bridge I take for my daily commute. My pix is not too good since I was balancing the camera on the steering wheel and trying look straight ahead! Once at work, we followed the GPS tracker the moving company set up. Our office in right on I95 so we all gathered in the kitchen and watched the plane come down the looked like a giant inch worm! and of course, we all cheered.   Three stories up, behind glass, like who did we think was going to hear us??

This pix was posted online by the News Journal.   This on the Delaware side of the bridge.
Now to the lack of stitching....I have been staining my deck a little each night.   The color is not the color I thought it was going to be but it is growing on me.   I am putting the stain on the decking with a brush but I think I will invest in a drop cloth (or two) and use the sprayer for the rail and all the spindles!   I will be glad when this job can be crossed off my list.   Yes, I should have started earlier but I travel alot in May which is good and bad.   Good fun/bad for letting the yard and home improvement projects add up. 

I am 98 months from retirement and COUNTING.   Oh to sew and paint and quilt and enjoy my yard and do whatever one wants all day/everyday!