Sunday, March 29, 2020

Last Mask Picture

This is the last time I'll show you a picture of a mask.  I made this one just a little larger, for a guy.  I am content with the pattern from, like it better than the ones with a facing on the sides.  Like the easy way to put a slit in back, like my adaptation of a little elastic plus ties.

It stormed in the night last night around midnight, lots of thunder and lightning.  I like those things.

Yesterday the grands baked bread, that was their life lesson.

This morning there will be church on Zoom.  Something to look forward to.  It seems so, so long since last Sunday.

The news from New York and New Jersey is horrifying.  

Before all this, I worried that my life was too small, that I needed to expand, get out more, try more things, travel more.  Now I find that as the days go by I am adapting to this even smaller life.  I spend less time frozen in place, less time worrying.  I think of the moms who would love to have my life for just an hour or two. 

Friday, March 27, 2020


I had a couple of people ask me to make masks for them.  Of course I read all the pros and cons of homemade masks and of fabrics and patterns.  Way overthought this, which is my normal.  

But this morning I made my first one and I'm pretty happy with it.  For the next one, I will start the pleats up just a little higher.  I decided on a combination of ties and elastic - overthought that too.  There is a slit in the back for adding a filtering material.  

This first one took about an hour and twenty minutes - people always ask that question:  how long did it take?  I expect the second to take an hour, the third less.  The basic pattern is from

I am so angry about Congressman Thomas Massie's threat to require individual votes on the corona virus bill, meaning all those representatives had to fly back to Washington to vote for a bill that will pass.  Such a waste of energy and money and resources, not to mention risk to people.  And, he is from my district.  I've used the phrase "hanging my head in Kentucky" when referring to our senators - you know who they are.  And now I'm hanging my head once again.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Opening Day

It's Opening Day in Cincinnati, the sun is shining, the temperature is 72 degrees, people are wearing their Reds gear, so I hear.  Except that there is no game and there won't be for awhile.

A while ago, my friend's daughter came to visit and bought a Reds shirt for my friend.  My friend wanted it made into a pillow.  I finally finished it this morning.

Here's the front:

And the back:

Goodness knows when I'll actually get to give it to her in person, but I was excited to send her the pictures.

My favorite player was if-y for Opening Day because of a winter injury, so hopefully he'll be able to get the rehab he needs before the games start.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Santa's Boots

I am down to the boots on the beaded Christmas stocking that I've been working on (on and off) for months now.  

I have found that threading the beading needle that came with the kit to be almost impossible, the eye is so narrow.  And so, on the remote chance that you are working on something similar, I've found that a small Sharps needle works so much better.  It's small enough to go through the holes in the beads but the eye is larger.  And, it helps to use regular thread instead of the floss in the kit, regular thread is much smoother.  (Carrye, I'm sure you have other ideas too.)

Our KY governor has asked that all nonessential retail stores close today.  I am imagining that today he will put in place a stay-at-home order like Ohio's governor did effective tonight at midnight.  I am so grateful for a sensible governor and look forward to his 5:00 tv programs.  He is part encourager, part informer, part imparter of hard things we need to do.

One of the big mega churches north of Cincinnati went ahead and held services yesterday.  I can't even.  I am grateful for my small church's Zoom services, it's so amazing to see and hear my church friends and everyone has a chance to talk.  In a safe way.

I went out early this morning to pick up a prescription.  Just that small trip, less than a mile from home, raised my spirits.  I actually talked to a person, face to face, kind of anyway, through the pick-up window.  And starting today, I've promised myself to exercise more, even if I wear a path on my hardwood floors.

News from the grands:  they baked real chocolate chip cookies yesterday, not the break-and-bake they usually use.  They were amazed at how good they tasted.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Advent Calendar

This is the finished Advent Calendar, made from a panel.  Sarah and Winnie spotted it in the window of a local quilt shop but the shop was out of panels.  I ordered one on Amazon, which I'm sure you can't do now.  It was an easy, fun project.  Merriment by Gingiber.

All week I've looked forward to picking up my grocery order today but woke up this morning wondering why I hadn't received a text about the order.  Turned out I hadn't clicked the very last box on the order and my cart was still full.  I clicked on the button and have a new time on Saturday morning.

It's not a big deal, I was just looking forward to going out the door and down the street and also to be ready for the week ahead.  The only thing I'm out of is bread, and that's a good excuse to bake rolls this afternoon.  There is a nice recipe in More with Less that uses cottage cheese, and I need to use mine up.  

News from the grands' attic:  they are using it for trombone lessons.  Yesterday's life lesson was learning to rotate tires.  The day before, they learned to change oil in the car.

I was scheduled to have cataract surgery with a glaucoma stent next week, but that's been rescheduled for mid-May.  And my wellness exam, for July.  I wonder how things will look by then.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Up in the Attic

A bit of levity.  My grands, doing homework in the attic of their house, a previously unexplored area.

They are, I think, taking lots of walks and shooting baskets in the elementary school playground near their house.

I'm glad that the weather is warming up and I too will get out for some walks.  I'm picturing walking by the river.  I think that would be good for my soul.

The Kentucky governor has declared that bars and restaurants will close at 5:00 p.m. today, except for delivery and carry-out.  Delivery and carry-out are encouraged, actually, to help the restaurants and their employees.

My cooking today will be a couple of loaves of banana bread with lots of walnuts.  Some for me, some for the freezer.  I'm making out a grocery list for pick-up on Thursday morning. 

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Corn Pudding

I made corn pudding this evening.  I didn't have sour cream so I used cottage cheese instead and that worked fine.  One box Jiffy corn bread mix, 1 stick melted butter, 1 can creamed corn, 1 egg, 1 cup sour cream (or cottage cheese.)  In a perfect world, there would be a can of drained canned corn, but my world wasn't quite that perfect.

I'll be cutting it up and freezing portions for later.  The time has come to be a little more careful with food waste.

Church this morning was on a video meeting feed.  It was nice to see some of my friends.  I have a very introverted heart, but I find myself challenged these days.

The Ohio governor has called for restaurants and bars to close tonight at 9.  Delivery and carry out only from now on.  I hope the same thing happens on this side of the river in Kentucky.  I have been impressed with both the Ohio and Kentucky governors.  And Amy Acton in Ohio seems to be doing a great job.  Look her up, if you're so inclined.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Those Little Blocks

With the brace off, my free motion quilting is so much more enjoyable and improved.  And the blocks I'm working on are small enough that I can do one design, then move on to another in the next block.

It's been a morning for catching up on little tasks and putting away things left out.  I didn't hear the trash truck this morning, but all those dried grasses have disappeared very nicely.  Maybe this afternoon, I can finish sewing down the little pockets on the Advent calendar.  That's been such a fun and easy project and you'll be seeing it soon.

I'm working on a grocery pick up for tomorrow morning, taking my time and thinking of things I can actually cook.  Maybe I didn't realize how much having a splint/cast/brace affected my mood.  I was busy trying to be grateful for healing and didn't look under that.  I knew I missed cooking and quilting but I don't think I realized just how much.

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Room for a Trombone

Is there room in a busy young man's life for band?  The jury is still out for Aaron.  The band director said on Thursday night that there is room in band for every student, so we'll see.

Room . . . reminds me of a child's Halloween book, Room on the Broom.  A witch flies around on her broom and when she lands a creature asks, "Is there room on the broom for a ____ like me?"  A truly wonderful book.

Yesterday I went here and there, picking up taxes and a prescription, to the bakery, to Aaron's basketball game, to deliver the brownies and some candles to church, to get a stack of library books, to get gas.  Starting today, I'll pay attention to the guideline for older people to stay home.  I already have a case of the "Oh, but I forgot . . ." and keep adding to my Amazon order.  

The doctor said I can wean off my brace, add weights to therapy, and return in three months for a final x ray.  What I didn't expect - my fingers are stiff.  Surely typing and quilting will take care of that in  short order.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Another Band Concert

March high school band concert last night, amazing as usual.  I'm counting it as an Artist Date, even though I didn't go by myself.  The last symphonic band piece was 15 minutes.  Nora was happy afterwards.

Today I see my wrist ortho doctor and am hoping to be able to skip wearing the brace at home.  And add weights to my therapy.  I am ready to do some pretty free motion quilting.  My therapist tells me that the doctor may still want me to wear the brace while sleeping and when I'm out and about.

I had my taxes done on Monday, then forgot to pick them up on Wednesday.  It's ok, there is time, I can pick them up today.

There's been the sound of a digger somewhere in the neighborhood all morning.  And it's breezy again today.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Ornamental Grasses

I came home from sewing with friends yesterday to find that my neighbor had cut back the dried ornamental grasses in my flower beds.  This is a VERY big deal, so nice of him and not an easy job.  He used a chain saw.  I want to do something nice in return.  

At the sewing group, I sewed on the beaded Christmas stocking that I seem to make little progress on.  This time, a puppy paw and a puppy ear and a candy cane.  Just those small things, and I sewed for several hours.

I had a moment and ordered lots of Lysol wipes and some hand soap.  No hand sanitizer to be found.  Then I got over myself and decided that the coronavirus has a possibly long incubation period, maybe 14 days, and whatever is coming has already been set in motion.  I use the wipes on a regular basis anyway, now I just have a supply. 

Just so happens that I signed up for desserts for the church Community Meal again next week.  I got brownie mixes and a big package of chocolate chips for added chocolate.  No nuts, I was careful about that.  But if there is enough batter for a single brownie for me, there will be walnuts added.

Sunday, March 1, 2020

Banner for Lent

This morning I hung a banner for Lent.  It's supposed to be a representation of the forty days in the desert during Lent.  I used Kraft paper from a roll, sewed in a header, and started crinkling from the bottom.  Excellent wrist therapy.  At the end, I just stood on it to get more crinkling.  There are fewer crinkles at the top, and that's ok, like going into the desert.

Yesterday the tee shirt quilt left.  My guest bed looks empty without it.  No pictures yet, until the gift is given to the young lady.  There were three bags of tee shirts unused, and now they are gone too.

In the last post, I mentioned things undone, and the banner was one.  Another was getting purple candles for the communion table.  I didn't find purple pillar candles, so I used white candles and wrapped them with purple glitter tulle.  Hoped for no fire, and there was none.  This week I'll order the six purple candles, burn them for an hour, and have them ready to swap out for next week.  At the first Sunday of Lent, today, all six candles were lit and one was extinguished at the end of the service.  Next Sunday all the candles will be there but only five will be lit.

Another task was to hem four pairs of pants, and now that's done too.  A Jeans 16 needle makes all the difference in hemming heavy pants.  And a ball point 10 needle is perfect for hemming light knits.  I'm down to my last needle in both, need to pick up more.

I was trying to explain to someone today that the reason I have so many sewing tools and threads is because I do different types of sewing.  Don't know if that sunk in, but it makes sense to me.  One of my current joys is a wool pressing mat, so great for pressing open quilting seams.