Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Orange Improv


These days, I'm making blocks for an orange improv quilt.  It's one of those projects that has been in my work space for . . . several years, actually.  Oh, dear.  I just need it finished.

It's an Elizabeth Hartman design, where you cut up twelve fat quarters and put the pieces in labeled bags, pulling out fabrics so that there is no duplication of fabrics in any one block.  I remember finishing the cutting at a retreat last November but the cutting started long before that.

If I do one block each day, I'll have the piecing finished next week.  Although this has gone on far too long, I do enjoy having various projects in the mix.  There's just something about seeing pretty things in progress, working around them, mixing them in my days.


Sunday, September 11, 2016

Viking 415 Freesia


Meet my newest wonderful play pretty, this Viking 415 Freesia.  I worked extra days this summer while one of my co-workers was on maternity leave and my boss gifted me with this new/old machine, which is perfect for me. 

When I'm doing repairs I often feel most comfortable with this size platform.  I'd been putting off a service on my Quilt Designer II because the repairs/alterations keep coming, but now the QD can go to the shop.  This machine has a little screen that tells stitch length and width, recommended tension, and which foot to use.  Everything is right in front of you.  I've done many lessons on this or similar machines, so it was just sit down and go.  It has the fix and stop features, as well as mirror image.

I love my sewing machine feet, and almost all the feet in my collection can be used with this machine.  I even have a walking foot for it.  

I have to admit that it's been weeks since I actually started a new quilt, but maybe this evening will be the time.  With extra work time, grand kid days, yard work, and a couple of short trips, my sewing time has been limited to finishing projects or doing some alterations.  Not to mention it's hot in my sewing area.

If not tonight, then soon . . . .  

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Arboretum Lego Exhibit


It was such a joy to see the outdoor Lego exhibit at the North Carolina Arboretum, as well as visit the grounds.  Every time I go, the landscaping is better than the time before.  Lots of good work going on there.

The hummingbird and flower have 31,565 Lego's.


The sculptures are mixed throughout the landscaping, in beds or water features.  


This gardener was my absolute favorite.  At first glance, you'd never know that it isn't a real person.

Visiting time in Asheville goes by so quickly, and it's nice to take a minute or two to just revisit.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Heights and Birthdays


During the North Carolina visit, we added the kids' heights to the wall.  Aaron at nine years is taller than Nora was at ten years.


Today is Aaron's birthday.  He got a surprise slice of birthday cake at Apollo Flame just before we left Asheville.  He was clueless - when he heard the clapping and singing he said, "Oh, it must be someone's birthday," then a delighted look came over his face and he said, "Oh, it's mine."

This is a tired week for me, but so worth it.  Today I really do need to do the dishes.  I had a sink full of dirty dishes when we left, but it seemed more important to mow the lawn.  That's what happens sometimes since I live by myself, things get set aside.  And I worked on Friday before we left and then again Tuesday after we came back.

Today I want to get over to the Taft Museum and get a membership, then schedule a visit for the Downton Abbey exhibit.  The venue is relatively small, hence the need to schedule in advance.  I've seen the exhibit once before at the Biltmore House but this will be a totally different experience.

I always love the Christmas exhibit at the Taft, plus it's so close to home, so I'll try a membership this year.  I have memberships at the zoo and aquarium but others come and go.  This was the first summer in awhile with no Kings Island passes, but the summer flew by without our even thinking about going. 

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Labor Day Weekend


A visit to Hendersonville, NC, and the grands spent an entire day floating on the lake in one form or another.  Here Aaron is in one of the kayaks and Nora is being towed behind.  Aaron even had his lunch in a kayak, not wanting to spend any time away from the water.  You can see why Sarah and Winnie visits are such a treat.

This small lake is perfect for kayaking and paddle boating.  There was also the new fire pit with s'mores and badmitton in the side yard.  Walks with the dogs.  Movies at home.  Staying up late instead of early bedtime for 7 a.m. school for Nora.  Quite a weekend.

And the weather, oh, my goodness.  A lovely break from the heat and humidity of these past weeks.

It wasn't easy to get up and go to work yesterday, and I'm sure that everyone in the family felt the same about going to work/school after that glorious weekend.  Thanks, Winnie, Sarah, and Walt for all that fun.  


Thursday, September 1, 2016

Pink/Green Combo


I kept waking up last night thinking I heard the wind blowing through the trees.  In fact, I'm sure it was the air conditioner turning on, but I think it's a signal that my body is happy for September.  Cooler temperatures (maybe after next week, which is supposed to be a high 80's/90 week once again,) windows open, pleasant to work in the yard.

My co-workers gave me two lap quilt kits for my birthday, one in pink and one in green.  I split them with one of my baby quilt friends, with a pink/green combo for each of us.  Of course, she finished hers weeks ago, but I'll be taking mine, above, to our next meeting.

Ohio Valley Quilters is starting a Northern Kentucky presence and I went to a sew day on Monday.  I saw numerous friends, and it was nice to just sit and sew for a few hours.  As is usual for me, I was grabbing projects at the last minute, including this quilt.  I forgot to bring my walking foot for the quilting, just used the regular foot, but it is fine, no pleats.  Forgot to bring a ruler for another project and didn't bring the bag of fabric for a third.  I'd be concerned about my memory if this wasn't my normal.  My sister says we are dreamy, and I prefer that word to some others.

I realize I've been pretty quiet, but all is well.  I'm happy for September because it signals longer days in the studio again.  I've been sewing downstairs because the studio space is so hot, which means lots of running up and down stairs and not having things close at hand.  Yes, I know I'm spoiled, lots of people do this all the time.  And I have space for a table in my bedroom, lots of people sew on a kitchen table and have to put things away every time they sew.

I'm looking forward to some Asheville time coming up and a chance to visit and reset.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Thinking About My Dad


Thinking about my dad today.  He loved football, rarely missed a high school or college game when he was retired.  He would be so proud of these two, shown here with their dad.  My dad had three granddaughters and was super proud of them.  No grandsons.  Aaron is the first boy in the mix.

And no,by the way, Aaron hasn't caught up with Nora yet.  They were standing on a slope.  For now, he just keeps up with her.  One of these days she will have a growth spurt and leave him behind, but only for a little while.

I am used to softball/baseball games, which have rain delays and make-up games.  Not so football.  When it rains, as long as there is no thunder or lightning, they play on.  My feet were squishing in my shoes by the end of the day, and Nora's were many times worse.  I was under an umbrella, she just had her helmet for protection.