Sunday, October 31, 2010

My Heritage

These celebrity look-alike things are always hilarious.  I don't believe I resemble any of these people.  But I am choosing to share it because I apparently look very, very Asian.  I never knew!  ha!

Happy Halloween!

Monday, October 25, 2010

it is an epidemic

It may be time for the EPA to come in and take some action.  Quilting as taken over.  First they took over the beds.  Then they got to the tables.  From there, it was an easy leap for them to cling to the walls.  They just can't be contained in one room.  And now they have infected the children, at least where Lorelei is concerned.

Homework assignment:  Book Report- cut six 8 inch squares, fill with various information, and glue to poster board.  Add 'stitches' with black marker around the squares.

Lorelei:  Wouldn't it be cool if it was a real quilt?

Yes.  Yes, it would be cool.  So that is what we did.  I was in charge of the rotary cutter and iron.  Lorelei did the rest.  I even let her have a go quilting.  (Poor Armando!)  I think she has a promising future!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Way-back Wednesday

I have been looking at bed sets for Eli.  I especially like this car bed:

Do you see the cool track for cars at the front of the bed?  Do you think there is a chance in hell that he would ever actually sleep?  ha!
Eli is obsessed with cars.  And with trains.  He loves Thomas.  I hate Thomas.  Thomas bores the crap out of me.  So, obviously, I am trying to encourage the love of cars.  (Pixar's Cars being the current favorite.)  But I really want me kids to love their rooms.  Or, at the very least, not hate them.

Growing up, my room looked like Strawberry Shortcake had thrown-up all over the place.  There was Strawberry Shortcake wallpaper.  Sheets.  And this weird ceramic Strawberry Shortcake plaque hanging on the wall.  I know that someone in the family (or perhaps of family friend) spent time making that plaque but it completely weirded me out.  And, despite my whining, my room stayed a Strawberry Shortcake heaven until I was 14 (I did remove the plaque and hid it in the storage room as soon as I was tall enough to reach it.).

There were so many other, cooler, things I would have rather had.  Remember She-ra?

I loved her!  I don't remember being bribed much as a child (I bribe my children constantly!) but I do remember the set of immunizations that led to me getting a She-ra doll.  I didn't cry so I got She-ra and her horse.  My five year old self was thrilled!

I also loved Jem & the Holograms.

Thankfully I never did my makeup like that!  Jem's look is 80's at its best (or worst).

What was your favorite cartoon as a kid?  And what do your kids watch that makes you cringe?  Please tell me there are some other Thomas the Tank Engine haters out there.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Mail Call

Maybe I should have said UPS call....  Either way, I got a mystery package today.  I came downstairs in the morning (my husband has been home and I have been enjoying the opportunity to sleep in) and my husband pointed to a package sitting on the kitchen table.  "You got more stuff.  What did you order?"
I couldn't remember ordering anything.  And it looked far too big to be another book.  I opened it up and what a surprise!

Yummy fabric from Riley Blake!  This is from Lila Tueller's new line, Isabella.  I believe it will be out in stores this month.  I can't wait to start on my project with this gorgeous fabric!  Stay tuned!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Scalpels & Hee Haw Farms

Quilters Home reviewed seam rippers a few months back.  I have to admit, I had no idea there were so many choices out there!  Some were familiar, others looked like they would be more at home in an operating room.  Which makes sense.  It takes a surgeons steady hand to remove tiny stitches from delicate fabrics.  "Un-sewing" has got to be near the top of everyone's least favorite things to do list.  Anyway, despite seeing all of these awesome seam rippers in a magazine, I hadn't seen any of them in my local quilt shops.  That has finally changed.  I found a seam ripper from Havel's that I love.  It is perfect for taking out subpar quilting stitches or dismantling a pair of jeans to make into a quilt.  And I look slightly sinister wielding it.  My kids have never been so well behaved.
The store I purchased this at only had this one in stock.  When the blade eventually dulls I will buy the Havel's Ultra Pro which has replaceable blades.  Has anyone else tried another brand they are in love with?  I saw the Gingher one but the tip of the blade looked rounded and I wasn't sure how well that would work.

And the farm:
I recently posted about Alicia Jones Photography and her fall mini-photography sessions.  We recently booked one with her and met her over at Hee Haw Farms in Pleasant Grove, UT.

The kids loved Hee Haw Farms, which means I loved Hee Haw Farms.  They had plenty of activities to keep the kids busy.  Both of the kids enjoyed the slides.

The corn maze was cool.  Once you got deep into the maze, the stalks were so tall you couldn't see landmarks to help you find your way out.

Of course, Eli loved the animal train.

They also have a trick-or-treat hayride, haunted hayride, pedal cars, petting farm, and pumpkin ice cream!  Delicious!  They also had a giant, blow-up type maze with inflated monsters inside.  Eli and Lorelei loved racing through it over and over and over again.

Admissions start at $8 (toddlers 2 years old and under are free).  Hee Haw Farms opens at 4 p.m. M-F and at 10 a.m. on Saturdays.

I have gotten the proofs from Alicia but I haven't received my image cd yet.  I will post the pictures she took as soon as I get them!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Lions, and Hospitals, and rockslides, oh my!

Okay, maybe not lions, but this has been a crazy week.  My father in-law was taken to the hospital last week in an ambulance.  He had pneumonia and his kidneys had just failed.  He had to be put on a respirator and put into an induced coma.  Serious fun for all.  Needless to say, this meant a trip to go visit him and the rest of my husband's family in Wyoming.  This is pretty much what the last four hours of our seven hour trip looked like:

Describing it as scenic would be being very generous.  Lorelei started on the "are we there yets" about two hours in.  Ugh!
My father in-law was released from the hospital over the weekend and is doing surprisingly well.  Amazingly well.  The man made us breakfast the day we left.  While we were there I visited the local fabric store (surprise), took the kids to the park, and just enjoyed time spent with family.

That last picture is of my father in-law PUSHING Eli around the yard in a go kart.  ha!  He is such a good grandfather and I am so glad he is still with us!

On our way home we drove through Green River, Wyoming.  On the west side of town there is a large rock formation that everyone calls the Palisades.  When we got to that spot on the interstate there was a giant cloud of dust.  Visibility was zero.  There had been a large rock slide.  Luckily, nothing was on the interstate but the dust proved to be just as dangerous.

This was taken by someone headed the opposite way on the interstate.  We were on the side closest to the cliffs.  Just before this happened (about 3-4 minutes) we passed a vehicle hauling a plane.  That vehicle, another car, and a semi all wrecked inside the dust cloud.  We made it out minutes (if not seconds) before that happened.  They had to shut down the interstate for a few hours to get it all cleared. From what I can find online, it looks like everyone involved in the accident was treated and released from the hospital.

Anyway, that was our trip.  It was great seeing everyone and I am thankful our family made it home safe and sound.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

FNS Results

I made this quilt last year.  It was actually my very first non-baby quilt.  My mother was going through chemotherapy at the time and I wanted her to have something pretty to snuggle under on the days she wasn't feeling well.  It is made from a Fig Tree pattern called Blossom.  I ♥ this quilt.

I have been working on one of these for myself for the past few weeks.  It really shouldn't have taken me so long to get the top sewn together, but it did.  Other quilting commitments kept coming up and I had to put it aside.  Thankfully, I decided that the Friday Night Sew-in was the time I could sew for just myself without any guilt.

I can't quite decide if I love the border or not.  If I remember correctly, I don't think I loved the border on my mother's quilt at first either.  I am sure I will like it much better once the quilting has been done and the binding is on.  Though, who knows when that will be.

Friday, October 15, 2010

DIY Friday

I have been quilting in the dark.  Quite literally.  My sewing room is about 20 feet long but only has one tiny light fixture in the center of the room.  It makes doing anything outside of that four-foot perimeter quite tricky.

It is a bit pathetic.  Annoying.  Hard on the eyes.  Today, all that changed.  Finally!  And, as my husband doesn't read my blog, I could totally claim I put up the new track lights all by myself.  You might be impressed, and he would never be the wiser.  Alas, I have to admit that I only helped.

Perhaps I should have moved the ladder before taking this picture.  Oh well.

I also have been working on my formal living room/ dining room.  I am determined to furnish the whole thing with used furniture.  I've got to save some money somewhere and you know it isn't going to be by buying inferior fabric!  Here's the dining room:

I made this table runner last year using a Moda charm pack.  My mother and I actually both made one on one of our sewing days.  We really need to have those more often!

I have also bought a wingback chair ($12), and an end table and coffee table ($15).  Now I just need a sofa and I will be all set.  The wingback chair had hideous fabric but was in very good shape.

It was so much easier than reupholstering.  I love that there were no ties.  And you can still see the legs of the chair.  Every slipcover I have ever used seemed to shift every time someone sits in them.  This really stays put.  And it was easy to put on once I figured out which side was which.  It was supposed to have stickers marking this, but I think I may have received a repackaged one that someone returned.  Grrr...  lol

Tonight is the Friday Night Sew-in!  I am going to finish up a quilt top or two that I have been neglecting.  And I will be finishing them up in my nice, bright sewing room.  Down side to the new lights, I now realize how badly my sewing room is in need of decoration.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


I made it to the two sewing shops in Casper, WY while we were visiting family.  The first one, Wyoming Sewing Center, was a disappointment at first.  I walked in expecting a bit of fabric and only saw sewing machines.  Gorgeous sewing machines, but no fabric.  Gorgeous thread, but no fabric.  Fun notions, but (again) NO FABRIC!  *sniff*

But then I saw the most AMAZING thing.  Something I didn't even know existed.  A Singer 222 Free-arm Featherweight!  Apparently they were never made for the U.S. market, so there aren't many of these babies floating around out there.  I wish I had taken a picture (I forget these things when I am excited!) but I did find a cool old advert for one.

*Note to husband:  I want one for Christmas.

I also test drove a couple of machines.  Wyoming Sewing Center sells Bernina and Viking machines.  I also saw a few Janome machines hanging out.  My favorite (by far) was the Viking Ruby.  (Okay, I really liked the Viking Diamond too, but a girl knows when something is out of her budget!)  The Ruby was just amazing.  It had every function I could want and has the drop-in bobbin feature that I love.  I need to quit looking at machines!  I will never be able to make a decision!
*Note to Santa:  I want one for Christmas.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Road Trip

Some road trips are well planned, thought out affairs.  This is not one of those.  We had a family emergency and had to go.  The van needed new brakes which, of course, took more time and money than we wanted.  Lorelei didn't pack pants.  I forgot diapers for Eli.  This is all my way of saying that I forgot my camera cord and won't be posting pictures of our trip until we get home!  I'm impressed we remembered the phone charger (and you should be too!).  haha

It was a long LONG drive yesterday.  And for whatever reason it seems like the thing to talk about on these trips is past trips.  Oh, we have had adventures!  None of which I would like to ever repeat.  Here's an example:

My husband's grandmother had passed away and we made the four hour drive to attend her funeral a week or two before Thanksgiving.  We made arrangements for care for our oldest son, packed Lorelei (then 1 year old), and headed out in our less than reliable car.  Half-way through the trip the alternator went out.  And, being the broke people we were, we did not have a cell phone.  We flagged down a passing car, got a ride into town, and then my husband's uncle picked up our car.  After the funeral the alternator had been fixed and we made our way back home.  The return trip was just as fun.  Less than halfway home the heater went out.  It was well below 0 degrees and we were feeling a wee bit chilled.  We stopped at the local police station (which provided some blankets for us which we wrapped around Lorelei's car seat).  We then went to a local grocery store and purchased a three-wick candle.  We used this to keep the windshield defrosted during the ride home.  I can only imagine what the people in the cars that passed us thought.  I don't think I have ever been that cold.

Thankfully, this trip has been much less eventful.  We will be home soon and I will post pictures!

Friday, October 8, 2010

tumbler blocks

I have been eyeing the Accuquilt Go! cutter for awhile now.  I really need to break down and buy one.  But it seems every week that someone else is giving one away.  So I put off the purchase again, cross my fingers and wait.  No luck so far, but I am entered in several giveaways this week.  And, altho it pains me to do so, (this isn't helping my odds people) I will tell you about one of them.  Gene's giveaway ends at midnight October 15th so you have still got time to enter.
I am getting off track here.  I am always getting off track.  Anywho.... the reason I want one of these babies is that I am dying to make another tumbler block quilt but not dying to cut all those tumblers out.  I really like how my last tumbler block quilt turned out.  I almost wish I had kept it.  Of course, I would have had to make it a wee bit bigger to keep my butt warm.

I think this was the fourth quilt I made.  I felt very adventurous (at the time) when I did the echo quilting on my home machine with (gasp!) red thread.  LOL  I wish I had more of this Barbara Jones fabric.  It is simply yummy!

And we have a winner

The winner of the Alicia Jones Photography session is.....

drum roll please.....

After chose her as our winner, I checked out her blog.  Turns out she makes delicious caramels and sells them online and in SLC or Springville.  (correct me if I am wrong Sarah, it is 1am and I am sleepy)  They look sooooo tasty.  If you haven't noticed, I have a bit of a sweet tooth.  Anywho, I am getting totally off subject here....

Congrats Sarah!  Please email me your contact information.

And thanks, again, to Alicia for letting me host this giveaway!  Don't forget, if you didn't win you can still book a session.  You can get $25 off (until the end of October) of a regular session/image cd or you can book a fall mini-session for just $40!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

100 Already?

This is my 100th post.  Can you believe that?  I certainly can't.  What on earth have I been writing about anyway?  Too much randomness I am sure.  I just want to say thanks to everyone who actually bothers to read all of this crap I write!
This week has been busy.  My husband works out of town and is usually gone for weeks or sometimes (gulp!) months at a time.  He's been home this week, which means that I don't get as much done as I would like.  He doesn't see "watching me sew" as spending quality time together.  Totally short-sighted if you ask me!
I did, however, get a quilt cut out.  And all of the blocks sewn together.  Here are my scraps (so far):

I am going to have to find something to make with all of these leftover triangles!  I also have been stippling quilts for a few people (got to make those payments on my machine).  This king-size quilt ended up having over 350,000 stitches of quilting when I was finished:

I wish my points looked that good on the pieced quilt tops that I make!  Maybe I should pin a lot bit more.  
But I have been spending time with my family too.  I swear!  Lorelei's school had a carnival the other night.  I was expecting cardboard booths with a few toss-across and/or fishing games.  This is what we found at the park when we arrived:

There was also a rock-climbing wall but I didn't get a picture of it.  The kids enjoyed playing and getting treats.

Don't forget to enter the giveaway I am hosting here.  You could win a photo session and full image cd from Alicia Jones Photography.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Christmas Is Coming

And it is only 80 days away.  That's right, EIGHTY!  When did that happen?  It isn't even Halloween yet and I am already feeling stressed.  What are you working on for the holidays?

Friday, October 1, 2010

Spreading It Too Thin

I have been exhausted the past few weeks.  My husband is out of town working, the kids and I have been ill, and there have been all of those things there always are that just don't get done unless I do them.  And for some reason all of those things seem to need to be done NOW.  And of course, being the graceful person that I am, I managed to sprain my ankle Wednesday night.  Not that big of a deal.  I actually do it pretty often...the result of some major nerve damage a few years back.  It is sore but I can walk on it just fine.  Why am I complaining about this?

I ran out of gas Thursday!  Completely out of gas!  How did that happen?  Okay, I know how that happened but still.... This just isn't something I have ever done.  I stopped at a four-way stop and went to go again and the gas only made it to just past where I could have turned off of the road.  This road has no place to pull over.  This actually worked to my advantage.  Instead of just stopping (which is what I would have done if I could have pulled over), I let the car coast.  And coast.  And coast.  With my hazards flashing and going just five mph.  It was just under a mile to the nearest gas station and I made it.  I literally coasted in front of a pump, got to the dip, and that is where I stopped.  Fantastic!  I was sure that at any second I would stop and have to walk with Eli the rest of the way and back.  I am thankful for life's little blessings!

Because of this I decided on Thursday night to just turn everything off and get the house in order.  You know, laundry, bathrooms, mopping, etc.  Maybe once all of these things are done I can just relax.  And my brain will no longer be mush.