Sunday, December 30, 2012

Be Happy,Be Creative, Be Healthy

This will be the last post from me for this year. I have somethings I want to get involved with in the next couple days and I will be planning on seeing you on the other side.

2013 will be a new year and hopefully a good one for all of you. I know I want to start the new year out with a good attitude and a good outlook on life. Certain parts of my life have down sides to them. I need to get over the bad stuff and Be Happy.

We all have a lot to be thankful for and yet we look at the bad side of things instead of the glass half full. I have been guilty of that this last year. Learning from my mistakes. If you learn you have your steps going in the right direction.

Hope everyone has a Happy, Healthy and Creative year ahead of them. Keep on stitching. Chris

Friday, December 28, 2012

Painting and leftover soup

We got some paint and started on the bathroom. Well I didn't paint Jeff did. He had to take the cabinets off the wall to paint behind them. The cabinets he made didn't have backs on them. Jeff is a smoker and he doesn't smoke in the house anymore so the room needed to be painted and sealed up.  
Here he is yesterday doing the ceiling and the crown moulding. He filled nail holes and got it all smoothed out so it really looks nice.
See the wall board had a pattern on it and the unpainted part was behind the cabinet. He sealed up all the nail holes and also the corners with the brush first.
Today he rolled the paint on the walls and it really looks great. I may paint the other bathroom the same color. That way we get all the same towels we can use them in both bathrooms. It is a cross between terra cotta and salmon.
In the kitchen I soaked and cooked 2lbs of Great Norther Beans.
Got the second batch of water over them and cooked them until tender.
Here is the leftover part. The carrots and celery were leftover from Christmas Eve so I cut them and added to the soup. Added potatoes and the left over ham.  
They call it Senate Bean Soup. It is used in the Senate in Washington DC in the dining room.  
It made a huge amount so I canned 8pts of it and 2 quarts and I still have some leftover for my supper and lunch tomorrow. It comes in handy when you want a hot meal and don't have all day to cook the soup. I take it to my Mother and for her it is the right amount of fresh soup.
There is no preservatives and less salt. It is perfect for her for a hot meal without a ton of leftovers. So we both had productive days. Chris

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

The year is almost over

I am sure the New Year Resolutions will start to come to the forefront of your minds because the New Year is a week away. I am not making any. I never can make them work for me. LOL

The New Year means no more political campaigning. Which is a godsend in it's self. The outcome is what it is and we have to deal with the voice of the people whether you agree with it or not.

The World didn't come to and end as predicted. The only end is the end of the year 2012. Where has the year gone to?

Yes it means another birthday is looming and the age is out pacing me right now. I for the most part feel younger than what I am, but some days are not so nice to me. I feel way older than I am. My Mom teased for years she was 86 and holding. She said this when she was in her 40's. Well she is fast approaching 85 years old and she didn't ever think she would get this old.

The days aren't as long right now, but they will get longer and more full of light. I think the plan is to turn on all the lights in the house and turn up the radio and start to sew. Anyone joining me? Chris

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas 2012

This is a meeting of the minds. My Mother with the red shirt on. She is 84 years old. End of the table is my Mother-in-law. She is 97 years old. And my husband. We had a good meal and the kids all had fun.

The two grandma's went to the ladies room in two seperate bathrooms at the same time and were in there a minute and the fire alarm went off. The cheese on the au gratin potatoes ran over in the oven and set the fire alarm off. They both came out and said what was that. We all laughed.

The kids got tablets for Christmas and they were all online at the same time comparing there progress in their games.  They are all pretty good kids and they gave both Great Grandma's hugs and kisses before they left.

We had a good day and I hope all of you have a Great day . Chris

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Highs and Lows of 2012

The lows have come in waves, but we survived. The highs come and don't stay long, but we survived. I guess it is all what you make of them.

We still are here the World didn't come to an end and we still have tomorrow to look forward to. I woke up this morning and I thought well I woke up so we must be going to get through this threat. LOL

The days are suppose to get longer after yesterday. Maybe I will be able to get more done. Yeah right.....

I have a tendency to sit and look out the window in the Winter time and hope and pray the cold weather goes away. Yet I don't plan on moving to another area of the country. I guess we in the Midwest know we have down time in the Winter and we adjust to it.

This year we got a lot of work done outside and inside. We are planning on doing some painting after the holidays. That is the cheapest thing to do in decorating is repaint another color to brighten up your life.

My husband has refinished several pieces of furniture and is working on an antique cupboard now. Hope to bring it into the house soon after the first of the year.It is going to be an armoire in his room.

We are going to down size some of our furniture and we need to make more moving space in the rooms as we age. I can't move furniture out as easy anymore to clean behind and we need to get rid of a bunch.

The highs for this year are we are both fairly healthy and we are still here. Both of our Mother's are still living so that gives us hope we will be around for a while longer.

My plan is to take each day as it comes and try to be happy with my progress through each day. Can't hope for anything more.

Hope all of you have a Nice Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year. Chris   

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Sorting has started

I got the fabric on the shelves at least folded all about the same size. Now I am sorting by color. This is the shelves above my computer. They are sorted but need to move onto the next wall of shelves.
These are all folded the same size, but the sorting needs to happen. I did get the cutting table cleaned off. It was piled 12 inches deep. So maybe some work could be done there now.
This is the mess I really need to address next. As I sorted and folded the fabrics I tossed out the smaller pieces to be put into a basket. I uncovered the basket and now I need to place all the scraps into this basket for quick use. You can see the basket there in the picture.
I have some boxes of odds and ends of sewing supplies. Bias tape, old metal embroidery hoops, and cheap fabric hearts cut out to use on canvas bags. These boxes have buttons and cheap thread and straight pins by the bottle full. All this is going to the Goodwill on Monday. I thought about a nursing home, but some of it is so old it might be for a collector or  someone who buys stuff for hoarders. LOL  That is what I am trying to get away from doing. These boxes were given to me and some of the stuff is from the 40's and 50's. I have enough of my own stuff.

I worked on this room instead of sewing. I needed a cleaned off space to press some fabric so first things first. Rained most of the day. Chris

Need to sew

Today sometime I am getting these out to quilt. They are a string place mat I made several months ago and I need to get them finished. They are for me.
I have decided I need some machine time today away from the TV and all the horrible news.
We have some friends well relatives distant coming today for a bit this morning and then it is raining and it will be my time to get something done.

We have found new hardware for the kitchen that we want to purchase and I think that we will go ahead with the purchase soon. We have bright brassy gold hinges and handles on our kitchen cabinets and I want aged black. They have an oiled bronze that looks black and yet rusty also. Boy replacing hardware is not cheap. But it can make the whole room look different. So to go with the darker hardware I need to get the place mats done to use on the table.

I think the quilting will be straight lines and it will be in black thread. The back is going to be black. I don't think I will bind them. Just do the pillowcase finish on the. The ridge will not be there to tip over glasses that way and they will lay flatter if stored without the bias binding. There are six of these and they can go either on my big table or the smaller one in the kitchen.

Yesterdays events were mind boggling. Hug your family more closely today you never know. Chris

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

So what is going on with you?

I haven't heard much from my followers lately. So how is your corner of the World doing?

In my neighborhood none of which is connected to me, a lot of tragedy has happened. But I guess if you live anywhere there is tragedy happening all over. The news gets to be so depressing you just have to turn it off.

The stress of the holidays and the rush to outdo the next family has gotten in the way of many getting into the spirit this year. We don't get into this much stress over our birthdays, but yet this holiday is to celebrate a birthday and we make it into something way more than a celebration. Maybe we need to get back to the meaning of the holiday and the reason we have faith in human kind. 

Just being with loved ones is more important to me than all the money in the world being spent on things the receiver doesn't want or can say thank you for.

I am Thankful my family has their health and those that can be here for the holidays will be here. Love the family you have and tell them that. Hug them now because who knows what will happen.

Try and make the holidays what you want. Smiles and Thank yous go a long way. Enjoy the Birthday of Christmas. Chris

Monday, December 10, 2012

This was the biggest hit

I made this a couple months ago and it has become the biggest hit with my Mother. Vegetable beef soup. I used my own canned tomatoes and I cut up the rest of the fresh veggies and used some frozen corn and peas. Cooked it all until it was done and then I pressure canned it.
I went to my Mother's today to visit with my brother and his wife. I took a couple more quarts into my Mom and she was in heaven with the gift. She loves the stuff.

This next week I have some celery and carrots that need to be used and I think I will make Chicken soup that noodles can be added to. To pressure can them you can't add rice, milk products or noodles. Feels like a good soup day to me. Chris

Trying to get more done

My Brother and his wife came on Friday and left today. I was visiting with them yesterday and showed them what I had gotten done with the POTC blocks. My Brother liked the colors.  
Most brothers don't appreciate hand work, but he knows that is a way for the female members of our family to relax. My Mother did tons of needlepoint when my Father was ill. It let her escape and find some relaxation from all the stress. 
The blonde young man is my grandson playing basketball for his school. He is so tall and fits the size for the sport. He likes the sport but isn't as competitive as his sister is.

The kids have grown up so fast and before long they will be out of school for the holidays. I really miss them not being closer than what they are.
We have had rain and today maybe some flurries. We have had about 1.3 inches of rain in the last few days. The grass is turning green again. The temps are really cool today. We had a windchill of about 17*F this morning before the sun came up. Not looking forward to the colder and snowy weather, but I do live in the Midwest and it can change momentarily. Wait ten minutes and it will change kinda thing. Stay warm. Chris   

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Gray day thought I would show some color

I have been working at this maybe more than I should. The cleaning is still in the process and not finished. More fun to see the colors come together in this quilt top. I have 1 1/2 rows done ot of 6 full rows. Lots of stitching left. I like to have one Winter hand stitching project to do.
Here is what the intersecting finish is. The blocks all come together with the cross stitched between them. I decided on a mottled fabric so it wasn't off kilter or the design of the fabric was distorted when sewn together. I guess you would call it a blender.
After the expense of the holidays are over I want to get some more blenders because I have some finishes that are waiting for the right fabric. I have spotted some ideas online and I want to see if I can find them in a fabric store. I believe in supporting the local shops.

My brother and his wife made it from Apache Junction, AZ yesterday. I haven't gone into see him yet. I figure he has  to visit with my Mom and he has friends to see. I am sure in the next couple days we will be seeing him.  Both my brother and his wife have their Mothers still living in the same town.

My sister was suppose to come and she is still sick. I do not want it back so I told her to stay home. She can come visit another time.

My husband is in the garage refinishing another antique cabinet. This one we have owned for a number of years and it is going to be re purposed as an armoire instead of a TV cabinet this time. We have some large furniture in the master bedroom and want to down size. I plan on selling the chest of drawers, two nightstands and a four poster bed soon. Need to get it advertised in the paper as soon as people start getting their taxes back some one will like it. Chris 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Worked on visible shelves first

I decided not to work on the closet. I have visible shelves that needed attention. Then when I get to the closet I have clean shelves to add the fabric to.
This one is above my cutting table. I sorted through it and pulled out small pieces and placed in another pile. Yes shuffling the deck, but hopefully it works when I am done.
Here is the cutting table and underneath it. Mess for sure. I want to get it cleaned off today and under it tomorrow. This laundry basket has quilts in the works in it.
This is the cleaned off shelves above the cutting table. All the small pieces are in another pile for future clean up. Looks better! 
Here is my pile. See what I mean I needed to clean. This will get placed in a sorting pile for addition cutting and stacking of the sizable pieces. As soon as I get this and the table addressed then the closet.
How did it get this bad welll...... I did it. No iffs, ands or buts about it, I am at fault. I will try to do better. Chris..... p.s. I need to sort according to color, note to self.

Still working

No pictures it gets worse before it gets better. The closet is today. YUK! I have UFO's and antique quilts in there. Drafts of quilt blocks for applique that I blew up the image. Also some Christmas stuff. What was I thinking?

Found out yesterday my sister is not coming to visit. She is sick with that crude I had and I told her to stay home. It is a 4 hour drive and she is doing by herself and the weather is suppose to get snowy.

She feels bad, but I told her it wasn't worth it.

My weekend will be working on this room and getting something more done to it. I was trying to clean other areas of the house and I can put them on hold. Yes I was about done with the rest of the house so I have a head start on the major cleaning for the holidays.

Been doing more hand sewing and connecting rows. I watch TV for a few shows during the afternoon and then a few at night so I get about 2 hours a day in on making progress happen.

I need to cook a better meal today. We had some sandwiches last night and I need to get a more balanced meal cooked. I have some leftovers in the fridge that need to be pitched. We had tacos night before last and there is some of that I can have for lunch today to clear out more in the fridge.

Still undecided over the meal for Christmas Eve. Not as many coming so maybe something they will all like instead of a huge meal. Have to ponder this idea a little more.

We have had some flurries two weeks ago and now the prediction is 1-4 inches over the Sunday Monday time frame. BUT  it depends on the way the storm tracks. We are still considered in the drought area of the country and need moisture. We watered trees this last Summer and I am still afraid it wasn't enough. Might have to cut back on watering this next Summer because we live on a well system.

Well need another cup of coffee to get energized. I think a little hand sewing this morning and get a jump start on the day with cleaning this mess up will help my mood. Take care. Chris 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

What a difference 10 minutes makes

This is just one corner of my mess. I am horrible, but this time I am rearranging myself without two extra hands working.
This is what I have been doing instead of working at this mess. I need some more scraps and figured if I got some cleaning done I would find some more. Well believe me I did.
The connecting sections are worked into the row so I don't have to go back and do them later.  
This is the first corner I am tackling. It is odds and ends of garment fabric pieces of batting and polar fleece. For now I pulled it out and put it in a huge contractors bag my husband had in the garage. I got the shelves cleaned off real quick.
This is the closet next to it and I am sure this will be days getting to the back of this mess. Batting will all get put in here and also and overflow of quilts in the works.
Well here is my 10 minutes of work. I got tubs full of scraps put on the shelves and used my large Ziploc bags to put quilt blocks all together in one spot. I refolded the leftover batting pieces and placed them back on the shelf until I get to the closet. That will be the next 100 minutes or more.
It is a start and it is going to be a long slow process. I see another pile on the cutting table I need to find a spot for so off for another 10 minutes of labor. Chris

Monday, December 3, 2012

Haven't felt right lately

Nothing to speak of other than just not myself. The gray days maybe are the reason. Woke up to dense fog this morning.
Yesterday did some vacuuming and it wasn't working right so took it apart and cleaned it good. Maybe can get back to doing more of it today.
My brother and his wife and my sister are suppose to come over the weekend. My sister lives in Oshkosh, WI. and my brother lives in Apache Junction AZ. Been several years since we were all together.
I haven't done much sewing other than hand stitching and it is getting boring right now so I need to get some machine time in.
The season is upon us and I haven't done any decorating for it at all. Maybe will have to force myself soon. Chris  

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Lots of hand sewing

Scraps and hand sewing. I have been using up colors and small pieces like crazy. They are colorful.
Here is one row sewn together with the small squares to connect the blocks. There are some who are doing this pattern all by machine. I chose to do it with EPP and seem to move along with a block or two a day. I try and only do it while I am watching TV at night. Sometimes I will sit down for 20 minutes on a break and pick it up to keep my hands busy. 
Some of the blocks still have the EPP pieces stitched to the pieces of fabric. So they tend to curl some. I looked for the name of this block and it is Points of the Cross. POTC has been done by some groups on Yahoo I find out and many fussy cut the center cross and the sections around the cross. I didn't go to that much trouble with this attempt. The sky is the limit as far as color and fussy cut pieces. I am making my shapes out of old lined notebook paper that is probably 20 years old. I had been making them on printer paper and they get ruined easily so I found the notebook paper and thought I might as well use it up.

Women used old newspaper shapes long ago. I guess you use what is available to you. The piece will be a fair sized quilt with the borders on it and I plan on hand quilting it.

I have been looking or lurking on some of the hand quilting sites and the hand pieceing sites that the quilt bloggers are writing. I am amazed at all the variety in the interpretation of the same quilt from quilter to quilter. It is a never ending quest to express themselves and hats off to the quilter who are trying to make a niche in the World for themselves.

I would like to see some of the quilts that are preserved in the museums in our country. In this day and age the likely hood that there will be money to keep them in controlled atmosphere is questionable. I plan on keeping mine within the family and once they are gone I am sure I will be long gone and it won't matter.

Quilting is a therapy for me. I would be a crazy woman if I couldn't keep my mind working and my hands agile from all the sewing. Going to go quilt. Chris