Saturday, November 29, 2008

We're back

I hope everyone had a very happy Thanksgiving! Are you sick of turkey yet? We are back from three days and two nights in beautiful New Jersey. We had fun visiting with family, and Rob and I even got out for a date night last night. We discovered a new game, Blokus. Rob's family loves to play games, and we played Blokus for hours on Thursday. Ironically, I just bought it last week for Christmas. It may be getting opened a little early!

Because the kids spent two nights with their cousins (super late bedtime and up with the sun), I anticipate all sorts of drama this evening. At least we have an extra day to recover before school.

I am taking the kids to see Bolt this afternoon. Daddy's game is on, and it's best to clear the house of impressionable people while Daddy yells at the TV. I'm so glad football season is almost over. I'd so rather take a nap this afternoon instead of sitting through a movie...

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Finish one...

And start another...
And in between, try to get a Christmas card picture!

We're gonna keep trying.
How are you spending your week?

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Saturday already?

Where did the time go? I've been feeling kinda stressed lately, like I've taken on a few too many projects! I try to keep plugging away, but things like laundry and dinner and homework keep getting in the way.

The kids are off all next week...this means a break from homework, so that's good. On the other hand, it means that the kids are home all week! Rob is taking Wednesday off, so maybe we can have a little family fun. On Thursday, we're off to New Jersey for a couple of days--with the dog. That means that I get to give a dog a bath between now and Thursday. Such fun!

My high school reunion is tonight, and I'm pretty bummed to be missing it. We moved from South Carolina the summer after I graduated, so there really are quite a few people that I have not seen in 20 years. I can't decide whether Facebook is helping to ease the pain or making it worse! I can only hope that lots of people take pictures and post them on FB.

Hopefully I'll be able to get some things done next week and post some pictures. Those fingerless gloves at the top of the post are another gift. I am making some mitts for myself but in a different pattern (and I think I like the gift ones better!). Enjoy this cold weekend!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Because I'm too lazy to email my friends...

Got this in my inbox this morning and figured I'd do it here.

Welcome to the new 2008 edition of getting to know your family and friends. Here is what you are supposed to do, and try not to be lame and spoil the fun. Change all the answers so that they apply to you. Then send this to a bunch of people you know, INCLUDING the person who sent it to you. Some of you may get this several times; that means you have lots of friends. The easiest way to do it is to hit 'forward' so you can change theanswers or copy and paste. Have fun and be truthful!

1.What is your occupation right now? Domestic goddess

2.What color are your socks right now? white

3.What are you listening to right now? The Snorks (on the TV in the other room)

4.What was the last thing that you ate? Go Lean Crunch Honey Flax and Almond cereal--and a cup of coffee, of course.

5.Can you drive a stick shift? Since I was 15!

6.Last person you spoke to on the phone? Rob

7.Do you like the person who sent this to you? Yes

8.How old are you today? 37, dammit

9.What is your favorite sport to watch on TV? Baseball...this is so not a question to ask a woman!

10.What is your favorite drink? COFFEE

11.Have you ever dyed your hair? yes

12.Favorite food? Chocolate ice cream

13.What is the last movie you watched? the whole thing? hmmmm...we started watching War, Inc., on Friday and gave up after 20 minutes.

14.Favorite day of the year? hmmmm, Christmas?

15.How do you vent anger? I YELL!

16.What was your favorite toy as a child? Don't remember having one.

17.What is your favorite season? Summer, then fall.

18.Cherries or Blueberries? neither

19.Do you want your friends to e-mail you back? emails are always nice!

20.Who is the most likely to respond? Cori, but she doesn't read my blog

21.Who is least likely to respond? everyone

22.Living arrangements? a house

23.When was the last time you cried? Can't remember, which is probably a good thing.

24.What is on the floor of your closet? Shoes, baseball cards, rubbermaid containers of out of season clothes

25.Who is the friend you have known the longest that you are sending to?hard to say, since I'm posting it here

26.What did you do last night? Ate dinner, watched TV and knit (knit or knitted?).

27.What are you most afraid of? Something bad happening to my kids

28.Plain, cheese, or spicy hamburgers? Cheese, please!

29.Favorite dog breed? In light of yesterday's post, do we have to go there?

30.Favorite day of the week? Friday!

31.How many states have you lived in? 6

32.Diamonds or pearls? Pearls, although as a practical matter, diamonds are more durable...

33.What is your favorite flower? Daisies, hydrangeas, roses, was I supposed to pick just one?

Okay, that's more than enough about me; now consider yourself tagged!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Unsolicited Life Advice (an occasional series)

Here's your piece of Unsolicited Life Advice for today: Never get a dog.

Because they'll decide that you are the only one who is qualified to take them out to pee in the early morning, or the middle of the night. Which suits the hubby-who-can-sleep-through-anything just fine.

Because the dog will eventually turn twelve.

And because his memory and body will start to fail him.

And you will take him out to pee at 10:20pm. And the dog will pee. And poop. And then you will go upstairs and go to sleep.

And the dog will wake you at 11:00. P.M. And you will leave your warm bed and take him downstairs and outside. And he will pee. And poop. And then you will go back upstairs and go to sleep.

And the dog will wake you at 1:00am. And you will stare at the clock for a few seconds. And then you will desperately try to cling to the fleeting memories of what you think was a pretty good dream--but they will vanish. And you will leave your warm bed. And you will make sure you have a good grip on the bannister before you trudge downstairs, only half awake, to let the dog out. The dog will probably pee. And then you will go back upstairs and go to sleep.

And the dog will wake you up at 4 something. And you will fight the urge to cry. And you will, once again, leave your toasty bed and grip the bannister a little more tightly. And you will let the dog out and not even watch him as he pees or sniffs every blade of grass or just stands there sniffing the wind and looking confused. And then you will go back upstairs and be thankful that you can have another two hour nap before you have to get up for the day.

And then you will wake on your own at 6:30. And after ten more minutes, you will force yourself to get up and start your day. And after you are all showered, made up, and dressed, you and your dog will go downstairs to start making breakfast and school lunches.

And you will discover that the dog has pooped in the dining room.

And peed on the corner of one of the rugs in the foyer.

Never get a dog.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Show and Tell

Blogger is being annoying lately--it's reversing the order of my photos. Usually, they come up in the blog in the order I chose them for uploading, but not this week. So I'll do things in reverse order today--isn't that supposed to be good for preventing aging brain? Or am I full of wishful thinking?

Anyway, I got the sewing machine working again yesterday. Not sure what caused all the drama on Monday--needles do break sometimes. Often, when a needle breaks or my bobbin thread runs out, I'll take it as a sign that I need to step away from the machine and do something else.

On to the good stuff! This is the Rose Hill hat, designed by Erin at house on hill road. It was really easy. Knitting the bobbles was the only part that was slightly tricky, but it went really quickly. I'm modeling it here, but this is going to be a gift. I have a large head, so I use myself as a fit model for hats--if it fits me, it should fit anyone! Erin has the pattern in a pdf, so if you want to make this, hop on over to her blog to get the pattern. I may make a few more of these.
This is my first attempt at one of these birds. John at Quilt Dad made a bunch of these a couple of weeks ago, and I just loved them (they've also been popping up in other places in blogland, just can't remember where right now). The pattern is a free one from Spool. The funny part is that the Spool shop is in downtown Philadelphia. Maybe one day I'll actually get down there. The bird is one of my ideas for the Christmas ornament exchange. Here is my other idea. I can't remember where I got this pattern--it was somewhere online. If you're dying to know, I can go look it up for you. The one on the far right is the only one I've actually stuffed so far, but you get the general idea.

These remind me of Hershey's Kisses--maybe I'll find some silver fabric and make a few of those. Or maybe I'll just go get a bag of the real thing! I loves me some Hershey's Kisses!
I'm also toying with the idea of trying a stuffed, 3-d star. I tried it last year with felt and it was a disaster. I may try with these cute fabrics this year! I'll be sure to show you how that turns out. I tell you, considering how annoyed I get with all the Christmas decorations out in the stores now, I sure am having fun making these ornaments!

And finally, I did knit something for myself! Here is my hat. You may recall that I tried knitting this earlier with some non-bulky yarn and ended up with a baby-size hat. This one actually fits, and I love all of the colors in it.

I had to get over the fact that I do not look good in a brimless hat and just remember that I love the yarn. Besides, when it's really cold out, you're just trying to stay warm, it's not always about looking good!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Yesterday was a frustrating day. I was full of grand ideas--I was going to start sewing an apron for a holiday swap. The thread (at least I hope it's the thread) was giving me all sorts of problems with the tension on my machine. After a few false starts, I decided to move on to another project. I'm also never going to try that thread again (it's rayon and slippery as hell).

So I moved onto starting to quilt Caitlin's quilt. Put in the quilting thread, change needles, drop the feed dogs, and get busy, right? No. The needle would not catch the bobbin thread--no stitches. What's a girl to do? Hey--let's try putting the feed dogs back up to see if it'll stitch that way....broken needle! Awesome! Time to turn off the machine and go do something else.

I spent my creative time working on my Rose Hill hat (go see Erin for the pattern). And no, it's not for of these days, I tell ya...

This morning, I spent two hours cutting out fabric for a dress for me. Have you ever cut matte jersey? It's like trying to cut water. It's all done now, and it's going away for a couple of days until my patience levels are restored.

This afternoon I'm not sure what I'm going to do. I may try to fix the sewing machine running again so I can piece some blocks for Caroline's quilt. I may start playing around with Christmas ornament designs--I got my list for swap today, so I'm all excited. Then again, I may just put away the mountain of folded laundry that has taken over my bed OR clean out the's all so exciting!

Happy Tuesday

Monday, November 10, 2008

Here are some pictures...

A couple of weeks ago, I went by my new favorite yarn shop and picked up some yummy yarn. A couple of these are going to be used to knit items for ME. I have yet to knit something for myself--I've been so busy making Christmas presents for everyone else. I do hope to knit myself a sweater, but that's going to have to wait until after the holidays.
I'll be sitting out here while I knit. When Rob's sister came to visit a couple of weeks ago, she helped us get the fireplace going, so now I'm set!Last week I finished Caitlin's quilt top. It is sandwiched now and waiting for me to get my free-motion quilting freak on.

And after spending a couple of weeks playing with this beautiful fabric from Buffy, I was unsure of what I was going to do. Then I saw Amy's block yesterday, and it all fell into place. Here is my November block for SewConnected:

Before I came here to post, I saw in Google Reader that some of my favorite bloggy peeps have new posts, so I'm off to read all about your adventures!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Feeling Good

It was an exciting evening! It is a new day, but it also feels like a NEW DAY. I feel proud of my country. It's been a long time.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Barack the Vote!

We're back. The kids are off from school today, and voting takes place at the high school right outside our neighborhood, so naturally I made the kids walk. The long way. Really, what else are we going to do today?

Anyway, we got there and got in line. I brought snacks for the kids--because you know they can't go more than 45 minutes without a snack--and we waited. Since school was out, the kids saw lots of classmates, and there was lots of running around and having fun. They only got cranky toward the end, when the lines were squishing together to get into the gym.

So we finally get up to the voting booth, and I won't let the kids in because I don't want them pushing the "vote" button before I can cast my vote. So I make my choices for office and then I get sidetracked by the idea of taking a picture of my vote. Unfortunately, the flash is obscuring the print, and the kids have now snuck under the curtain into the booth, so I just press the "vote" button and we leave. On the way out, I overhear some women talking about some bond question and laughing about how long-winded and nonsensical it was (and I did remember reading this among all the papers taped to the side of the gym when I was in line) it appears that I missed some things! Oh well, I did cast the most important vote.

And it only took an hour and a half!

Go vote!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Happy November

November already...seems like just yesterday I was saying the same thing about October. For a quick Christmas update--the first quilt is still sitting in a chair waiting for me to finish sewing the binding onto the back, the second quilt top is 80% done, the third quilt has 3 out of 56 blocks sewn. The hoodie still needs to be finished, and the hat and mittens I made for Bobby have been frogged because I'm too lazy to make a gauge swatch and they were too small...I have my work cut out for me!

So Friday was the Greatest Day on Earth to be a Kid. I never did get a picture of Caroline--she nearly snuck by me at the school parade, and she went trick-or-treating with a neighbor. She was Sharpay from HSM1 (blue dress). Here are the other two, all ready to get some candy!
Saturday, I finally succeeded in getting the whole family to go apple picking. It was a beautiful day, and the kids had fun--they even said so!

On the way out to the orchard, I was telling Rob that I could make and freeze apple pie filling, and I could make apple sauce and apple butter. With huge beautiful apples and three very enthusiastic pickers, we ended up with over forty pounds of apples! I made four pie fillings for the freezer and one actual pie on Saturday. Now I still have about thirty pounds of apples to process...

Saturday, November 1, 2008

This was the swap that started it all for me last year, and sign-ups start today. This swap had over 600 participants last year! Go on over to freshly blended or cake + pie for more info.