Sunday, January 31, 2010

Disney's Give a Day

My Binky Patrol group is having a Give a Day event on Sunday, Feb 7. See the website link for more information about what this promotion is all about. Basically, you work a full day and Disney rewards you with a free ticket to Disneyland (or Disneyworld, I think). From the link, you type in your zip code and you will see Binky Patrol. There are two ways to participate, the all day event on Sunday, or you can work from home and make a quilt or two or three, and drop them off by Feb 21 and receive the free ticket. You have to sign up through the Disney website and contact my friend Carla. She has agreed to do all of the 'footwork' on this one. I said she is crazy, but she is great like this!

You might even find something for your area if you are looking for a cheap vacation this summer.

Cleaning the closet

In my efforts to clean out the clutter, I tackled the closet today. I couldn't get to the back of it because as time went on, I started piling all of my clothes on the floor and just picked from the top of the pile. I kept wearing the same 5 t shirts every week and would just add them back to the top of the pile after they got washed.

After sorting for only 1 1/2 hours, I unearthed the floor of the closet and 50 pair of white socks and another 50 pair of black socks. Really? Where did they all come from because in the mornings I'm looking everywhere for matching socks. I never wear white socks anymore, so the white ones went into a big bag and got squished into the bottom of the closet for the next fashion change (or the next time I buy new white shoes) and now my black socks are organized for a quicker morning routine. I've sorted about 20 t shirts to rotate through (I'm so lucky I can wear t shirts and jeans every day to work!) and everything has a place on the shelves. I still have to go through all of the hanging stuff that I never wear. I should wear it and it fits and is in style, but I am so much more comfortable in my jeans that who wants to dress up when you don't have to? And who wants to get rid of perfectly good clothes when you may be forced to wear them one day?

I got rid of 45 pounds of clutter today. I think that calls for an ice cream celebration!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

I'm still here, just barely

I think I may have an ulcer. Every time I eat, my stomach hurts for a couple hours. I probably should go to the doctor, but who has time for that?

Monday, January 18, 2010


When we first moved into this house 5 years ago, we had a mouse problem. I got the live catch traps and probably caught 50 mice in the kitchen. Or, maybe it was the same 3 mice over and over. I would take them out to the country and let them go and then the next day, the trap would be full again. Finally, I gave up and got the snap traps. I caught another 50 mice before I finally figured out how they were getting into the house. There is a small hole near the plug behind the stove.

Well, today I was cooking dinner and a little mouse came out from behind the stove and looked at me and asked, "What's for dinner?" This time I decided not to play around. I got out the snap traps. Within 10 minutes I had a mouse. After dinner, when the stove was almost cool, I started to pull it out from the wall to see if the hole was there again. I had plugged it up with steel wool. As I tried to pull it out, another mouse jumped out and ran under the toaster oven.

Another trap, another 10 minutes and another mouse. I pulled out the stove and yuck! The hole was back and ew, how does it get so icky under the stove.

I think I have the problem under control, but set one more trap just in case.

The really funny thing is we have a rodent problem at work. The poor guy at work who is supposed to catch these critters tried for about a month before catching one rat. We have rats, mice, voles and snakes and he couldn't catch anything for a month. I started to feel sorry for him and offered to go to the pet store and get some mice to put in his traps so he could show his boss he was catching things. He wasn't laughing. Maybe I should bring these mice in to school???

Monday, January 11, 2010

Monday Musings

Monday again? Time is racing ahead as though it has someplace important to go while I sit here wondering 'what's the hurry?'

This weekend I got a couple more quilts done as well as lots of lab books graded. Every student did a lab last week and it was my turn to touch every one and have my fun.

I decided that if I'm going to be the feather queen, I must keep practicing on my feathers. I have to find my books on making feathers because I am trying to remember how to do them and am trying things that aren't working all that well. They look ok, but what I have in my head isn't what is coming out on the quilt tops.

What I love about the stripie pattern from is that it works great with my machine. My machine can do about a 6 inch stripe and these quilts have that size of a stripe for me to fill. So, I can just practice my feathers in the stripes and it looks like I planned it that way. Good thing I have about 50 more of these quilts cut and ready to sew together. I have a friend who sews them for me and brings them back and then I get to quilt them.

This is one of the strip quilts I put together from the leftover pieces I was working on a couple weeks ago. It would also work well for different size feathers in the strips, but I just practiced with feathers going back and forth. I'm not a very patient person and didn't feel like making tiny feathers in the tiny strips so just made big feathers all across the quilt. Some I liked and some not so much.

And finally this cheater quilt that the center was already done and I just added the borders to it. It was really long and skinny so I had to add more side borders. I have troubles with adding borders that aren't wavy. I need to learn how to not make them so wavy. I know it has something to do with measuring across the middle, but again there is the whole patience thing. I'm not so good with measuring and like to just sew. Must get over that...

Here's to a good week. We have finals this week so I have three half days. They aren't necessarily easy days, I do have to grade the finals, but at least I don't have the kids all day and they do have to be quiet while they are taking the tests :) But the freshmen are taking a lab final and there is a lot of setup for that. Ugh :) They do have fun with the test though, so that's a good thing.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Happy Birthday Mom

It was yesterday, but I wanted to take a minute to say Happy Birthday to you. And to say thank you for everything you taught me growing up. I never took the time when I was at home to thank you for all that you did for me. For the 17,000 loads of laundry you washed, hung on the line, folded and put away for me. For the 274 times you brought me my lunch when I forgot it at home. For the many times you sat with me when I was sick and cleaned up after I made messes when I didn't quite make it to the bathroom.

Thank you for instilling a love of quilting, crocheting, knitting, gardening and all things crafty. Thanks for teaching me how to cook (and how to clean--eventhough I don't do that very well) and teaching me how to love my children unconditionally.

Thank you for letting me make my own mistakes and only very rarely saying "I told you so".

Thanks for putting up with all of my creatures, from snails and slugs and everything that creeps and crawls to the dog that 'would not come in the house!' to the birds and furry things that smelled really bad.

Thanks for taking me to church on Sunday mornings and yelling "you hoo" to the paper boy on the way home.

Thanks for being the best mom ever.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

She's having the time of her life

And I get to see small glimpses of it. I want to go visit now!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New York City

My oldest leaves for New York today for a month to do an internship with a publishing company. I know she is going to have the time of her life and I'm trying to let her go with dignity :) Not easy for this overprotective mother. For some reason, New York doesn't scare me as much as San Francisco does. I've been to San Francisco, I've never been to New York. Maybe that is why. Plus, it is cold in New York. Bad guys stay inside when it is cold right? Please don't tell me otherwise.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Before and After

Can you tell the difference between the before and after pictures? Both kids had things done to their hair. One was cut and one was highlighted :)

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Back to school

Today I go back to work and have to teach for a whole 2 weeks before getting a day off. Boy, do I have it rough sometimes :)

I've been busy cleaning and grading and doing very little quilting these last couple of days. That's ok because soon enough it will be summer and I will have plenty of free time again.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

1,000 pound challenge

As I am cleaning the boys' room again today I have decided to keep track of just how much junk I am getting rid of this year. I'm challenging myself to get at least 1,000 pounds of un-necessary stuff out of my house by the end of the year. I'm not sure if 1,000 pounds is too much or too little, but as I throw out and give away stuff I no longer need or want, I'm going to weigh it and post it on the side bar mostly for myself, but it may interest some of you as well. I plan to focus on a room a month and purge everything we no longer use or love. By the end of the year, I should have more room in the house for the people who are the important parts of what makes a house a home. Too long I have let the stuff of the house rule and I'm done with that. So, today starts the weigh in and emptying of things no longer needed. Out go old clothes that no longer fit, trash hiding under beds and knitting magazines (those were in the sewing room) that had dreams of becoming wonderful sweaters, but never enough time to actually become reality. I hope that in letting go, I will find more room for the things I do love and care about.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Too easily distracted

Just saw this link for making pillowcases and now have plans for next Christmas! Had to share.

Final quilt of 2009

Wow, that is weird. My total for 2009 was 171 quilts quilted. Not bad for getting sick for almost 2 months. I think I can do a little better this year, but had better get started soon. I have been grading lab books and did the dreaded grocery shopping today so nothing fun so far.

This year I plan to learn how to do feathers so much better. You can see from the new picture behind my bog title that I am showing you where my feathers are now. This quilt was done a couple days ago and I just learned how to post the picture behind the title bar. I plan to update throughout the year as the feathers improve.

So, onto new things in 2010 and off the computer for a while. Thanks for visiting and checking out my progress as I work through the stash and try to help as many kids as I can with the talents the Lord has given me.

New Year Changes

As with each New Year, there are changes to be made. I plan to make some changes to the blog design and color and layout over the next couple of days...stay tuned :)

In with the new

I've never been good at resolutions, but that has never stopped me from making them. This year I have some goals that I can share here.

1. I'd like to become a Feather Queen. I'd like to be able to make feathers that actually look like feathers and go where I want them to go, not where they want to go. I know it will take alot of practice, so over the next year, expect to see a lot of quilts with feathers on them. I have a couple of books and a DVD that are all about making feathers, so I plan to pull those out and get started on them soon.

2. Organization. I've already started on this one, working on the sewing room and the boys' rooms this week, but there is a long way to go. By the end of the year, I'd like to have gone through every room in the house and touched everything I own. If I don't love it or it doesn't have a home, it needs to go. I know it will be a lot of work, but I'm so tired of being a slave to my stuff and having it take over my life that during every vacation, I spend so much time trying to organize all of the junk that doesn't belong. I need to get stuff out that nobody uses and make room for the stuff we do use and make room for the people who live here. That's a big goal, but if I set smaller goals for each month, I think I can get through this.

3. Work. I have been putting in more hours at work this year and it is frustrating. I need to work smarter, not longer and make better use of my time at school and stop wasting so much of it. I need to stop bringing work home and feeling guilty about not getting it done. This goes along with organization.

4. Quilts. This year I got about 175 quilts quilted and I'd like to get at least that many done for 2010. I'd also like to cut more fabric this year and get more quilt kits made up. Fabric sitting on the shelf is not doing anyone any good. I'd like to get all of the fabric that is in the garage into the house so it can be used.

5. Fun. I take things way too seriously often. I need to relax and find the fun in things more often. I think this starts with myself. If I can laugh at myself and let things go that often bother me, I think I will be able to forgive others easier.

Those are the personal goals I can share here. There are others too.

It will be fun to look back next year and see what has changed.

Here's to a great 2010.