Can you feel the difference?

Is it possible that I really feel the difference between 105* and 101*?  I don't know.  Maybe it's all in my head.  But, I swear, it feels better out.  Oh, it's still hot as satan's fireplace, and by the time I walk from the car (maybe 30 steps) through the humid, wet heat, I just want to walk in the house and lay down on the floor. 

It's a good thing I have an incentive project.  Something that can be done in the air conditioning. 

I finished the 8 small arcs I was making.  These don't as long as they look like they would, but they still take a long time.  That was all the sewing I did, with some stars as leaders and enders.
And, of course, there was yard time.  Not much in bloom now.  Just a few things that can stand the heat.  The Rock Roses are doing really well.  This is a closeup, but they're putting out long stems and multiple little pink flowers along them. 

 And, one of the hibiscus.  These used to be Syd's, but now they're mine, I guess.  She only took her orchids.  She left a LOT of hibiscus. 

This weekend, there were regular chores, but we also started the painting process.  We bought paint so we can paint the guest room next weekend and I painted the closet.  It looks so good.  It's going to be a showplace for my quilts.  We'll be able to walk in there and see them all at one time and choose the one we want from the stacks.  At least that's the plan. 
I know painting a closet doesn't sound like much of a start, but this closet has lots of shelves and it was a lot more work than I expected.  But, it's a start.  The house was last decorated when it was popular to use a different color in every room.  I didn't do a very good job of relating those colors to one another.  This time, we are going with a limited, related palate that I think is going to look Maaaaaahhvelous! 
But, there's a lot of work between then and now. 
A lot of work.
Everybody have a great week!!  I'll be resting my sore back. 



Quick post

Not much happening around here.  It's too hot.  By the time I get home in the 105* heat and make dinner and clean up, I really don't want to do much of anything. 

I did manage to finish the last ornament.  I'm going to sash these and either put them in a column or a row and turn them into a small table runner.  I think they'll be really cute that way. 

And, I finished the large arcs I showed last week and started the last 8 small arcs.  The small arcs fit into the large arcs and make a 45* curve.  I printed the pattern for the border last week.  I think I can do that.  It's basically this design, but in a straight line, with curved corners.  I can do that and I'm almost certain the scraps I've been using will be enough for the border as well. 

And, I did start that afghan for my TV time handwork project.  It took me a while to find the right scrappy pattern, but this is it.  It's basically a granny row and I crochet until I'm tired of that color or get to the end of the ball and then I move on to the next color.  It doesn't look like much now, but I think it's going to be real cute. 

Rob and I spent some time looking at paint chips to paint the inside of the hosue.  We are both very ready .  We've picked the colors and have a set of chips we like.  And, if nothing changes, I expect us to start painting Syd's roo...uhm, the guest room soon.  We also picked out towels for the guest bath.  That was much easier than picking paint, but probably not much less expensive.  But, we will enjoy what we picked and if we ever have a guest, so will they. 

We had Syd for dinner last week.  It was a real nice visit.  She seems to be doing well and enjoying life on her own.  She posted on facebook how glad she was that I taught her to cook.  Her roommates don't cook and couldn't understand why she was buying so many groceries to stock her pantry.  But, they've enjoyed her cooking, so she's teaching them in hopes that they can trade off the job and all cook a couple nights a week. 

Everybody have a great week!  I finally figured out the project my boss has been pushing me so hard for.  One night, while I slept, all the dots lined up for me and I could finally see what I needed to do to finish that project.  Now, if I can just find the time to do it.  And, it's so hot, I'm having trouble being really motiviated. 



Big changes continue

Life is full of changes, but sometimes, they seem to come faster and harder than others.  I guess it's really about how I handle those changes and whether I can accept them or fight against them.  But, while I decide, I'll sew. 

Now the guild's raffle quilt is handed over to the quilter, I can work on my own stuff.  First thing I did was start these.  These are the last 6 large arcs for my big paper pieced project.  I didn't quite get them finished, but so far there are 162 pieces of fabric attached and 24 pieces left to add.  I think I have about 10 small arcs and then I can start to worry about the border, which is pieced basically the same way.  Except I don't have to do that border, if I don't want to.  I could do some applique, or something else to show off my skills.  Who knows.  But, I am going to at least try the border from the pattern to see how it goes.  When I started this quilt and had two years to finish it, that border was no problem.  Now, I'm only a year away and that border looks more daunting.

As I was working on those, I was using this as a leader/ender project.  It's going to all be stars, in a random looking layout that won't actually be random at all.  That one will take a while to do as a leader/ender, but that's fine and I'm looking forward to it. 

I also made this.  It attaches to Bella's leash and holds three plastic produce bags to pick up poo.  I also attached the flashlight because sometimes she poos in a dark spot and I can't see it to pick it up and have a problem reaching down and picking at random stuff in a dark spot on an empty street.  She's gotten so excited about walking every morning now.  Yesterday, when Rob was harnessing his dog, Bella jumped down and started circling, sniffed at her leash, definitely excited.  I was still stretching and Rob got ready to go and Bella walked right out the door, between the cars and was headed to the sidewalk, no leash, just little dog, head up and going for a walk.  Even though she's been in our house all her life, she's not used to being around us or getting attention from us.  When Syd wasn't here, Bella kept to herself and waited.  Now Syd's gone, Bella's starting to enjoy Rob and me.  We've treated her like a rescue and let her get used to us and come to us when she wants attention.  And, it's worked well so far.  When she wants me, she comes and climbs up on me and gets in my face until I scratch her belly.  And, when she's done, she goes off and lays down somewhere.

I finished the quilt shop ornament and started the Christmas tree. 

These are fun and cute and mostly easy, tho the quilt shop took quite a bit of time.  I'm enjoying them, but also looking forward to my next hand work project, whatever that turns out to be.  I found so much yarn in Syd's room that I might just start a Linus afghan. 

This was the "deal" of the weekend.  We found this Seth Thomas mantle clock in Goodwill for $15.  Rob kinda fell in love and he knows how I feel about clocks, so we made sure it had the key and the pendulum weight and took a chance.  I brought it home and took the face off and oiled it and wound it and tinkered with it a bit and it's ticking away.  It's running 5 minutes fast, but that will be easy to adjust.  Now, if we can just find a place to keep it.  I turned the chime around so it doesn't chime.  It had a bell, like a hotel desk bell, and that was the most annoying ting, ting, ting of a chime, so I turned it around and now the clacker just sways without making noise. 

When Syd moved out, she took everything but a large pile of junk she didn't want.  Of course, I found treasures, like the Indian maiden costume I made her and her science projects and her school pride t-shirts.  I dumped out a box full of Barbie clothes to pick out the paper and garbage and buttons and found myself sitting there, untangling the Velcro knots and closing all the clothes so they wouldn't stick to one another again.  It was a very sappy, sentimental moment in two days otherwise spent trying to find that damn smell and get rid of it.  I succeeded.  But, it took one day in the bathroom and one in the bedroom and a LOT of water and several tools, both manual and electric.  Then, Rob and I sat down and decided how we want to use the room and from there, what we wanted to do in the rest of the house as far as redecorating.  Now, it's just picking paint chips.  And, that could take a month or more.  Then, I will move some of the large furniture that's been in my studio into that room, making room to turn my studio into a real studio instead of a cramped tiny space my sewing machines sit in.  I have big plans! 

Everybody have a great week!  I'm headed back into the chaos.  I checked my emails.  It's gonna be a hella Monday after two days off.



All alone and plenty to do

Rob is out if town, so it's just me and all the daily chores.  It's 5:24am and I've already made coffee, fed all the animals, and walked the dogs.  I even caught up on work email to see if I could figure out which direction the day would go.  I couldn't.

Rob left early yesterday and I got up and started my day with some sewing, then yard work and watering.  Then I showered and decided to set the time on my phone for an hour and spend it cleaning house.  Then, I was going to give myself another hour in the kitchen and an hour cleaning the studio.  I did great the first hour.  The second hour took an hour and a half, but I also baked strawberry scones and cornbread sticks to eat this week.  And, my hour in the studio was a bust.  I got distracted cleaning up my embroidery floss and didn't get much done...til I realized that with the floss cleaned up, there wasn't really that much else to do in there.  It was a real mess.

I've made good progress on the quilt shop embroidery.  Lots of greenery still to go.  And, I plan to outline the sewing machine in the window with black.  Maybe some in the quilt, too.  But, not too sure.  That's a lot of extra work on a project I'd like to be done with. 

We've finished the guild quilt.  I sewed the last border on yesterday.  I don't think I can show you a picture yet, tho.  I think it needs to be shown to the guild first.  But, soon as that's done, I will post a picture.  It's a very different project for me.  Not my usual style.  Very modern look, I think.  Now that's done, I can get back to my sewing projects.  I have a couple days off scheduled this week and I plan to spend some of that making paper pieced sections for my project.  The quilt guild project took most of the months of May and July and I just need to sew on my own stuff for a little while.  I spend June getting the pieces ready for my quilt, now it's time to sew them up!

I had been using the Singer 401, but there was still a tension problem and every so often, the top thread would get stuck in the race hook and then caught in the hook assembly.  I had resorted to looping the thread around the bobbin winder tension, then feeding it in to the top thread track, which gave more tension, but it wasn't enough and the machine would still catch thread once in a while.  Yesterday, I got tired of living with that and took the tension assembly apart and put it back together and it sewed the rest of the day, just fine. 

I've decided to start a new leader/ender, but that means spending a little time at the cutting board.  A friend gave me this collection of fabric and I've decided to turn it into a set of stars.  All sizes from 4.5-18" square, but divisible by 9.  Mixing them up together.  Using stars as the centers for larger stars sometimes.  Stars randomly placed on the quilt surface.  It may be a huge mistake.  But, it also may be a darn cute quilt.  I may even mix in a good red. 

Okay, last but not least, these two were sharing Rob's pillow.  Sort of.  I don't think it was really sharing on the dog's part.  It was more tolerating an immovable object. 

That is normally the dog's place to lay, but the cat's gotten very uppity lately. 

Everybody have a great week!  It's first week of the month, so it will be a busy one for me.  Syd comes to finish packing today.  Her moving truck gets here tomorrow.  She has chosen not to include us in her move in any way.  Knowing that there is not a darn thing I can do about that, I am just smiling through.  Hoping this won't be the last time we hear from her 'til Christmas morning gift unwrapping time. 

But, a little worried it might be.