12.31.2007

New Year Eve Thought

We cannot change the past because it has already happened. We cannot change the present because it is in the now. We can change the future, which will move into our present and then through to our past. We can change the past.

12.20.2007

Sick? Stay Home


I went to work this morning feeling a little under the weather. It didn't feel like allergies, it felt like sickness.

This isn't too surprising because my boss was sick late last week and came to work. One of my other co-workers was not feeling up to par, but didn't have it as bad as the boss. People mentioned that he should have stayed home.

Today the other co-worker came in sick - same thing. And complaining about it repeatedly! Ugh! I mentioned that perhaps they should have stayed home. "I didn't want to stay home!" They said. Ugh!

I'm going on vacation soon and I didn't want to be sick. Usually I get sick during Christmas vacation because I'm stressed out by work and the holiday season. When I stop work, my body relaxes and those germs move in! That hasn't happened for a few years, so I was really hoping I don't get sick.

The whole situation made me cranky and irritable. Or was that because I was getting sick? Ugh!

So if you are sick, please stay home. You may not like to stay home, because you like to share your illness or like to share how bad and miserable you feel, but honestly, I have absolutely NO sympathy because you could have stayed home! UGH!

Here's a simple equation: SICK = STAY HOME

You owe it to yourself to rest and to others who don't want to get sick!

UGH!

Of course, if I'm sick tomorrow, then I can start my vacation early. Mmmm.... Hack, cough, sniffle, ...

12.16.2007

Make A Flake

Snowflake that is. Make one when you've tried to fix a plumbing issue and come to realize that you are above your head. Then you stop and call for help.
This weekend the spouse, R, a friend, A, and myself, Joe ;-), baked cookies! I made whiskey balls. R made thumb print cookies and rice crispy treats. A made pistachio and cranberry biscotti; gingerbread cookies; and chocolate swirl cookies.

My cookies used Vanilla Wafers, walnuts, chocolate, sugar, and whiskey! I was done in an hour! It was pointed out that it was weird to make cookies with cookies! Needless to say they taste great!

At some point during the baking and cleaning, I found that there was a small flood under the kitchen sink.
We cleaned that up, but I couldn't find the leak. This has been going on over the last year or so. Mystery/stealth leak. I tried everything to reproduce it - no luck.

Today I was able to reproduce it and found that it was the hot water shut off valve. Ick! I've replaced a water shut off valve before in the bathroom. Well, the area under the kitchen sink is not so roomy. I tried to remove it, but realized that it just wasn't happening and that a real professional would need to come in and replace it. So I reconnected the dishwasher and the sink's hot water supply valve and turned the water back on.

So I made a snowflake which I found at Sticky Crows.

12.08.2007

Fabric Pottery

Batik Fabric Bowl II'm trying a new thing - fabric bowls. During my monthly quilt meeting at Capital Quilts, we learned how to wrap fabric strips around clothesline and then to sew the clothesline in such a way as to create a bowl.

That was a few months back and I finally decided one night to do a fabric bowl. It was a little easier than I thought and I had some fun while doing it. Of course, there was the usual problems of figuring things out, but once that was done I had loads of fun making this bowl.

I had a difficult time getting a good photograph of this bowl. I 'm playing with my digital camera and flash, but could get the angle I wanted without the picture being blurry or dark. I'll try and get another photo of the inside and post it.

Moving Forward

Mystery Quilt Top

This is a quilt top that I just recently finished. I started at the beginning of June in a class at the Quilter's Unlimited 2007 Quilt Show. I did most of the blocks that day and then finished the rest of the blocks by the end of the month

Then the blocks sat stacked for awhile. A long while.

Usually when this happens, it is because I'm thinking of how to set them, what borders to use, how to make the border - basically design decisions. However, this was already done for me. The instructor, Kim Einmo, had provided all of the instructions. So I knew the plan for the quilt.

What was keeping me from finishing? Fear. You see my blocks should have measured 10-1/2" square. Instead mine were anywhere from 10" to 10-3/8" and so not square. I was in a quandary!

The problem is that certain elements would not match up or seams would be small - it just wouldn't fit. Which reminded me of a saying a friend of mine once told me - "You're a Gay man. You can make anything fit."

While this brought a smile to my face, it didn't provide the guidance to make things fit.

So it sat. Out of sight. In my project bag. I avoided it whenever possible, but it kept nagging at me.

During that time of avoidance, I read some quilting magazines and they all seemed to have at least one article on moving forward with a project. Either move on, or get rid of the project.

One day while toasting myself in the sauna at the gym, inspiration hit! I would trim all the blocks to be 10" square and who cares if things don't match up! At least it will all fit together, and I could move on!

Of course, that's easier said than done. I kept telling myself that it will be fine. I knew that no matter how careful I trimmed the blocks, seams would not line up perfectly, so squares and diamond shapes would not be perfect. I remembered one author's essay saying how she just pushed through projects as she had more to do and no time to waste.

I carefully trimmed each block to 10". I carefully sewed the blocks to make a row, and then sewed the rows to make the top. The inner border was easy.

It was at this time that I realized that I had read the cutting instructions incorrectly! My outer borders were about 10" too short! I had a quilting emergency!

Ok, not quite an emergency. As problems go, this was minor. The solution I came up with was to use the left over binding fabric to make corner squares.

Sometimes you just have to move forward.

Now, about the quilting pattern....