Monday, October 31, 2016

I actually got those pesky seams ripped and even re-sewed!  Now all I have to do is square off the bottom and I'll be done.  But since I need to head out to the doctor in a bit I'm going to wait to tackle that last step until after I get back.

Earlier today, while looking for things to do to put off ripping, I moved the recliners and coffee table in the living room, then swept and mopped the floor.  Luckily I managed to survive the attack of the killer dust bunnies that were lurking there; obviously it's been a while since I tackled that job!

I've been up since 6:00 but 'managed' to find lots of things to do (and phone calls to make) to put off ripping out those seams.  Around 9:30 I finally bit the bullet and turned the bag inside out to get at it - and Colleen pulled up.  Saved once again!  

She brought over a bag of spools for Kathi (which I knew about) 
and some mint chocolate penguins that I didn't.  

I gave her the kitty sale fabrics and can't wait to see what wonderful things she whips up for Anna.  She couldn't stay long (she needs to get back over to Harrison's class for the Halloween party) but did admire the 'new' bathroom.

Happy Halloween! 

Here's Alex, at 12 days old, celebrating his first Halloween.  Not sure how he will be celebrating tonight, but guessing the evening won't be spent curled up on a chair...

I had big plans for sewing on Sunday, though a few things got in my way.  

At least they were good things!  I got numerous phone calls (one from Linda, one from Rachelle, one from Colleen) at various parts of the day.  They all turned out to be lengthy chats but I'm not complaining!  

Plus now there's a chance I may get to attend a wonderful Quilt Retreat (that I've heard about for years from various friends at Foothills) in February!

After Boot Camp (where I was finally able to do one of the exercises I never could 'get' before!!!) I swung over to JoAnn's for rick rack, heavy duty thread, and clasp "thingies".  You might think that people had all their Halloween stuff finished, but judging from the long, long checkout line (which happily moved surprisingly quickly since they had lots of registers open) a lot of people may have procrastinated until the last minute.  Of course it's possible that they are just getting going on holiday gifts...

Aja had not picked up Tyga (or even 'checked in' with us) by the time I got home a little before 3:00.  I thought maybe they'd called her in to work Sunday after all, but it turned out that she'd worked 17 hours (!!!) on Saturday and didn't get home until after 4:00 am (at which point she needed to scrub off all the body paint that had been applied for their WICKED "do" at work.)  So it was almost 5:00 when she collapsed into bed... and then, to her amazement, 4:00 in the afternoon when she woke up!

I did actually get another bag (virtually) completed yesterday (Aja definitely approved of them, and it also sounds like she'd like one of her own) BUT I screwed up one of the final steps (and explains why I was initially confused about how to finish off the French seams) which is a real bummer.  

Today I'm going to have to take it apart, and I just hate frog stitching.  

It's especially annoying because because I had gotten the seams 
of the various fabrics and rickrack to line up perfectly! 

Since the only thing on my schedule today is a doc appointment in the afternoon I could get a lot of stuff done this morning.

Or not.... LOL

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Always a fun day when I get together with Wanda, though she started out with upsetting news: a friend of ours has had a medical scare (never good news, but especially after the rough year she's just had 'it's not fair'), and spent much of Thursday having all sorts of tests.  Now we all just have to sit and wait for the results, though unofficial guesses are apparently optimistic.

  After a brief Show&Tell (Wanda approved of my Disappearing 4-Patch blocks and the mini-quilt I started during Jessica's class) we got started.  However we ran into a snag at one point because I did not get enough (or the right size) webbing on Friday. So that seemed like a good point to stop and go to lunch (YUMMY!) Afterward we popped over to her house, in essence to rummage through her webbing stash and and also pick up some heavier thread, though it was also an opportunity to admire her jacket now that all the pieces have been sewn together.  I also wanted see the progress on the Pizza Box block for Donna, which Wanda had put in such a safe place (so her cats wouldn't mess with it) that it was MIA for a while.  But she did find it, and despite her aggravations with the paper-piecing (I'm not the only one, and if Wanda has trouble with something you can just imagine the fits it gives me!) it is turning out beautifully; Donna will love it!

We then made a run down to SAS where I got the correct amounts/sizes of webbing (and saw lots of people in there picking up all sorts of fun fabrics for Halloween costumes) and then headed over to 35th Ave. (on our stop there last time Wanda had forgotten to pick up some gift cards she needed) where I found yet more cute kitty fabric on the sale shelves, and the perfect fabric to work into my mini-quilt border.  Could not find my coupon, but after Elaine, at the cutting table, overheard me she gave me one that is expiring on Monday that she insisted I use.  Really!  Said it would 'save' her from having to shop for fabric when she doesn't need anything.  (I told her need has nothing to do with it, but she still insisted.)  

By the time we got home it was almost 4:00 and Tom was getting worried about us.  We had invited him to go out to lunch with us, which offer he declined, but when he suggested maybe instead we could bring him back a take-out order I did mention that we weren't coming straight home from our lunch outing. Anyway, once we had all the necessary materials at hand we got back to work.

When it was time for the final step clips are easier to use than pins, so Wanda suggested clippies.  I knew I had some somewhere (because I had tried using them when binding, but didn't like them) which is why I had the Tools Tub out, to look for them, but they weren't there.  They were, however, in one of the little sections on the tray (with a clear top) that she lent me a couple of years ago which is 'attached' to my machine to hold the fabric level with the sewing area. So every time I've sewed I've probably seen them.  Didn't I feel stupid?! Happens a lot when I sew.... LOL! 

(I had also picked up the necessary heavier needles for working with the mesh, though later, when looking through my "Tools" tub for clippies I found enough little boxes of needles in varying sizes that I may never need to buy any again ...providing I remember that I have them....) 

And by 5:30 I had my first gift completed!  Of course I can't post a picture (because the lucky recipient has been known to visit my blog) but maybe it'll show up in a post-holiday entry in January.  Today I am going to work on some all by myself.  On the one hand I "know" the procedure now (at least in theory) so it might go faster (at least I don't have to leave the house to find webbing, heavier thread, heavier needles, etc.)  On the other hand, I won't have a resident expert at my side helping, and could be singing this song:

Help Me, Wanda, Help Help Me, Wanda!

Can I get a bag completed before I head off to the gym this afternoon? 

But if you're curious, heck back later for an update 
and discover whether I am jumping for joy.... or tearing out my hair. 

Last night Tom and I watched our current Netflix, Long Way Down, which we both enjoyed.
(Another rec fromTerry? Can't remember.

Meet Martin, JJ, Jess, and Maureen. Four people who come together on New Year's Eve: a former TV talk show host, a musician, a teenage girl, and a mother. Three are British, one is American. They encounter one another on the roof of Topper's House, a London destination famous as the last stop for those ready to end their lives. 
In four distinct and riveting first-person voices, Nick Hornby tells a story of four individuals confronting the limits of choice, circumstance, and their own mortality. This is a tale of connections made and missed, punishing regrets, and the grace of second chances. 
Intense, hilarious, provocative, and moving, A Long Way Down is a novel about suicide that is, surprisingly, full of life. 

I was up until midnight, wide awake (and reading) so I was surprised to wake up so early this morning.  However did get to see a very pretty red sky when I let Tyga out.  Wasn't aware that we're in for some weather!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Wanda is scheduled to come over in a little bit to help get me started making the mesh bags.  With all my focus fabrics I hope to be able to churn out a number of holiday gifts!

Yesterday I rendezvous-ed with Colleen and the kids (because of the extra one she's watching there were 4) at SAS to pick up webbing for the handles.

I also looked for rickrack, though unfortunately/surprisingly 
SAS did not have colors/sizes I needed. 

I also spent a fair amount of time on the phone yesterday, doing the preliminary footwork trying to help Alex find new health insurance since BCBS will be pulling out on Dec. 31.  Anyone watching the news knows that the ACA situation here in Arizona has become a serious problem, with only one provider willing to provide coverage for 2017... of course increasing their premiums, possibly doubling them!

Tyga arrived last night for an abbreviated stay; with cooler weather (theoretically) arriving Aja's hours poolside are being cut and she won't be working such long hours.  Of course Phoenix's idea of fall, and other places' idea, differ "somewhat"....

Friday, October 28, 2016

Despite yesterday's cloud cover we did reach triple digits yesterday, though it's supposed to 'cool off' now and drop back into the 90s.  Our weather can make it difficult to relate to friends' talk of snow in other places!  In theory summer is over, though sometimes it's hard to tell!

No vehicles burned in front of our house last night... always a good thing!

I did have some unpleasant dreams, though (after watching Top Ten Weather Disasters on TV last night), "almost" drowning.  Obviously my one time surfing (in Hawaii in '72) did not teach me enough!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

I managed to charge my camera battery in time to snap a couple of pix before the tow truck arrived this morning.  As you can see, the car burned right in front of our drive-through gate.  (Seems to me that we repainted the fence/gate not that long ago, but it sure looks like it could use another touch up!)

Obviously no fingerprints or DNA left behind at the scene of the crime...

Bill installed the new ceiling light in the bathroom this afternoon.  It's much nicer than the old fixture, and almost looks like a skylight in there. Of course the project did not come in under budget... If I could only find our basement <g> maybe I could zoom down there and print up some more money.

I was surprised (but very happy!) that when I got back into bed around 5:00 I was able to fall asleep... and thrilled to find it almost 8:00 when I woke up.  So maybe today won't be as unproductive as I thought.  Here's hoping!

The burned-out shell of the car is still sitting out there, so I grabbed my camera to take a picture.  Except that when I got out there and turned it on I discovered >sigh> that the battery needs to be recharged.  I really need to get around to buying a second battery!  At least now I've added it to the list, which is a start!  

While I was out front Edie, who lives "behind" us, drove by.  She said one (of her three) dogs barked during the goings-on, but she heard nothing and was unaware of all the excitement.  (I'm guessing that if Tyga had been here he would have alerted me?)  Another neighbor from down the street drove by, and was glad to hear that it wasn't our car that went up in flames. 

 Never a dull moment, though somehow (!) I slept through all the excitement; didn't find out about it until I got up to pee at 3:30 and saw that the kitchen lights were on. Somebody torched a (stolen?) car right in front of our drive-thru gate. 

 Apparently there were police and fire engines and everything, though by the time I went out everyone had left.  Now there's foam and water everywhere, and the electric company's bucket truck was pulling up to check the wires overhead.  

Did get more painting done yesterday (it just keeps looking better and better in the bathroom), and many of the floors mopped.  However my back has been giving me 'twinges' the past few days so I did take a few hours in the afternoon to just lie on the couch and veg in front of the TV.  Later this morning Bill is coming over to install the new overhead light in the bathroom.

I don't expect to be very productive today.  Tom has gone back to bed but I didn't even bother... pretty sure I'm up for the day.

My computer has been acting "quirky" lately, and yesterday it wouldn't let me access FB or Google (though e-mail was still going through) so it's probably (past) time to replace my dinosaur.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Yesterday's upper body gym workout was better than ever; upped some of the weights and reps, and Jim even commented on how good my deltoids are looking.  I also got in some cardio on the elliptical since I arrived half an hour early, thinking my session was at 10... but that's the Friday time.

After a protein lunch of tuna there was time for a quick run to the library (dropped off several finished books and DVDs, picked up a couple more) before Aja stopped by to pick up some cases of Rockstar for one of Alex's friends.  Her trunk latch has been very uncooperative for several months, but yesterday Tom was able to actually fix it for her (no one else had the right tool to tighten up the "thingies".)  Tyga was happy to run around the Back 40 for a bit, but didn't seem too bummed that he wasn't actually checking in to DDD this time.

For the past several days Colleen and I had been playing phone tag, and her latest call came during the 5 minutes that I was at the library.  After Aja and Tyga left there was still time to connect with Colleen at home before she needed to leave for her afternoon school run.  She was happy with all the goodies I brought over (June's fabric, some jewelry for the girls, a souvenir from Carol's memorial service) and I was happy to see all the things she worked on at Quilt Camp in Prescott over the weekend.  Here's a photo of her at camp.  I haven't seen her quite so relaxed and smiling like this in a while (organizing and running QC is stressful), but obviously she was able to enjoy her time once she got there!

Then it was over to The Other Quilt Shop, just a couple of blocks away, to pick up yet another yard of the background fabric for my Disappearing 4-Patch.  At first I thought the bolt was gone (panic!) but (PHEW!) it was on the shelf.  To avoid further problems (and disappointments) I decided I should just bite the bullet and buy the EOB which turned out to be 3 yards.  Whatever I don't end up using in the rest of my blocks, and then in whatever border I devise, will almost certainly come in handy elsewhere.

I could tell that Sheri definitely needed an extra hug yesterday.  When I asked her, I learned that as she was getting ready to head to work that morning her 14-year-old dog died.  While it wasn't really a surprise (she'd known Chico wasn't doing well) it's SO hard to lose our furry friends. I know I STILL miss Echo!

Last night Tom and I watched a movie that had been on my Netflix list but that I bumped into at the library yesterday.  It turned out to be VERY slow, and not only was I surprised that I sat through all of it, but that Tom did also. 

We also watched a couple of taped sessions of Jeopardy.  Of course both tapings ended before we learned the answer to Final Jeopardy.  In one case I'm sure my answer was correct, though for the other one I had no clue.  And of course we never did learn how the 3 contestants did.

Today's agenda includes more bathroom painting (I'm hoping to get third section done) and floor mopping (now that both dogs are gone.)  I declined chocolate cake last night when Tom had his, hoping to sleep better. But while I fell asleep at a much more reasonable hour last night I still woke up way too early this morning, before 5:00 - and with Tom still sleeping I can't really get started on too much activity, at least until a more reasonable hour!