Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Quilts and...Quilts

Yeh, I'm like that...wishy washy. I went from my tote bag obsession back to building quilts again.

I love the idea of taking something (discarded fabric) and transforming into something that can give comfort and love and be loved by the receiver. I know, I'm weird. I've been told numerous times and I can read your minds anyway.

My creations are very amateur so I don't feel comfortable selling them - right now- but I love the idea of giving them to friends, family, those in need, those who would appreciate them, and I even came across this site,  Quilts for Kids one day while surfing the net. No, I don't like kids in general but I do know that kids appreciate the comfort of a quilt or blanket..or at least mine always have.

It all boils down to the fact that I love the relaxation and creative outlet that sewing on a machine gives me no matter how bad or good I am at it. So for now, that's what I do.

Here are my latest....

I was so pleased with this one! This one is almost perfect with very little flaw to it. I constructed it from 2 thrift store pillowcases and some scrap I had...

I even machine quilted this one...first time ever I machine quilted
Although this quilt is totally finished now, these pics are of the unfinished quilt.


I got the idea for the colors on this one when I saw a quilt online with contrasting colors of yellow and black and thought how pretty it was. This one is made from a discarded dress and gingham curtains. I'm actually still in the process of working on this one...

Because my quilts are made from upcycled fabric, I sometimes have to wait until I find the right fabric to go with a piece I am working on...therefore I usually have more than one quilt top that I work on at a time.

Here is another quilt top waiting on a finish job. This one is BRIGHT is it not?!!!  I love bold colors so I really like this one made from vintage fabric found at a garage sale in Corpus Christi last summer and discarded fabric at the Blue Hanger Goodwill...

Well, that's all for now. Gotta get to quilting!!


Cork boards, Bulletin Boards, Pin Boards, Message Boards...whatever you choose to call them, most people have one.

The other day I looked up at mine which hangs on the wall above my computer desk and observed everything I had pinned on it...which isn't much.  I would say that a bulletin board can tell a good bit about a person. On our boards are most likely things that are important to us...special dates, coupons, important reminders, pictures, phone numbers, etc.

For example, on my bulletin board I have and inspirational message to myself:


Then there is a California Grapes bookmark that I found in Toby's old stuff. I have no idea why it is on my board other than I could think of no other place to put it and didn't think it warranted the garbage can.

Next, I have a list of all things that are recyclable at the local recycling center. Quite honestly I don't do much recycling because I have very limited space to store recyclables until they can be taken to the center. The list only proves that recycling is important to me on some level.

I also have tacked a  list of unimportant passwords that I pin only because they are a pain in the ass to retrieve when I need them on those rare occasions.

Then there is my other little inspirational pin about attracting money:

1. Think more thoughts of in a day of abundance than lack of money.
2. Be happy now, without the money.
3. Be truly grateful for everything you have now.
4. Give the best of yourself.

Hmmmm....I can't really say too much about this one other than the facts.  We as a family adhere to these rules religiously and though we are very, very  far from being what one would call financially rich, we don't struggle financially to make ends meet. Matter of fact, we pay our debts easily and even during this whole 'economic crisis' hoopla we have not wavered...granted a little extra cash for some luxurious type items would be nice. :-)

Speaking of luxurious items, I have a magazine cutout of an RV on my board. An RV is at the top of my list for luxury items. An RV would be my rolling hotel room. I can visualize myself exploring Central Texas in an RV. No pet fees, no searching for a hotel that allows pets, and camping would be all the more alluring in both mine and Summer's eyes. Yes, an RV definitely.

This next one is kinda weird. This excerpt comes from my brothers blog from a few..maybe even several years ago.  For whatever reason it resonated with me enough that I copied and printed it...

Today is my last day of work. I greet it with mixed emotions but all in all it is a good day. Change is that little something that keeps the spices in life. I find it humorous that most people tend to fall into a routine - or rather a rut, in my opinion- that they fight to keep for as long as possible. Perhaps it is the fear of failure or losing what we currently have. Of course, when you are at the bottom of the heap, you figure there is nowhere to go but up...just make sure you are at the bottom of the heap before you take on that life philosophy. There is nothing worse than thinking you are on the bottom rung only to find there are new lows out there that you never explored before.

Wow! Is that not powerful?

Lastly is my neighbors phone number...not sure why I have it on my board other than I think I tacked it up there when they went out of town for Christmas last year and asked me to call them if anything went awry with their home while they were away.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Saturday Hanging with Friends

Saturday my closest friend Robin invited me and Summer (Toby was at work) over to her house for the best brisket Texas has to offer - made special by her hubby Dave - and some socialization. Robin's mom was in town and Lauren, her daughter was also there with her newborn. Cute little guy I had to admit.....

Perfect host and hostesses that they are, Robin and Dave filled me up with great conversation, booze and food. Summer was kept occupied entertaining Jake, Robin's dog who had been temporarily banned from inside the house while baby Dominik was there, feeding horses, goats chickens, and shooting the BB gun with Jeff, Robin's grown son....oh, and of course and endless supply of cokes, food, and pie and ice cream to keep her motivated.

We had a really good time. The next day, even my homebody Summer exclaimed how much fun it had been to hang out with friends all day. I had to agree it was a nice change in our abnormally boring routine that we have as of late.

Here is a pic Dave took of me and Robin. We have been friends a few years and I believe this is the first pic we have of the two of us together. When we are out and about together people always ask us if we are sisters. I'm not sure if they question our relationship because of our easy banter with each other or the slight resemblance we share....

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thanksgiving Day 2012

Thanksgiving for our small little family was not much different from last year.  We had brunch at Cracker Barrel and came back home. Our original intention was to take in a movie after our meal like we did last year but we couldn't find anything playing that satisfied us all.

Holiday shopping amongst all the other merchandise vultures was out of the question and we weren't prepared to do any hiking so we just came back home. Quite honestly, I didn't mind in the least. I had a quilt I wanted to finish up and vacuuming that was way overdue.

I also took this 'free day' to have Summer paint an end table in her room that needed a fresh coat. Toby also took this day for he and her to work on a wood project they had been looking for free time to tackle for awhile.

It seems like we spend so much time on the road running around from here to there that it was nice to spend some time at home.

That evening Toby prepared his special Mexican Martini's that he only prepares on special occasions.

We are such a blogging bore these days.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Hair and The Dog

In light of the haircut fiasco of the past year I was hoping (and certainly would have prayed if I believed that sort of thing produced results) that Summer would lose interest in the super short boy hairdo eventually. No such luck, so I cringe and take her the stylest who cringes as much as I do.

I agree to her requests only because (1) I remember what it was like to want to experiment with a style, whether it be clothing or hair, and have my mother sneer and criticize in hopes that her apparent distaste would sway my decisions and (2) I certainly don't want my control of her choice of hairstyle to morph into something worse as she in an act of rebellion...let's say a Mohawk or something worse than that. Good Lord, I can't even entertain those thoughts...

Anyway, I force myself to focus on all her many positive qualities that far outweigh the hair issue. The kid is loving and helpful as she can be to me. She's always willing to lend a helping hand and consoles me with hugs and kisses if I am disappointed about something or even if I am feeling down.

She is respectful of curfews and asks permission to do things she is unsure of.  So the hair thing...I choose to suck it up and put on my big girl panties and let her be HER...SUMMMER.

So, on a second note, I was giving Bo a walk around the block this evening just as the school kids were getting off of the bus.

I noticed that as they walked toward their homes they would kick at the fences and antagonize the dogs that were barking at them. One of them even picked up stick and jabbed it through the fence at the dogs.

No wonder dogs attack humans. Idiots are everywhere in all shapes and sizes...

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Seeping Out

I have creativity and expression seeping out of me lately. I have always had a creative side to me but lately I find that I can't contain it. I dream of creations that can be created and I awaken with ideas that seem to come out of nowhere. I also find myself singing and dancing ( I typically never have danced before) more than usual lately. I'm enjoying listening to a wide variety of music rather than my usual genre.

Maybe I just spend too much time at home alone....

Anyway, here are some of my latest projects:

Here is a quilt I started several months from thrift store fabric scraps. I haven't gotten any farther than the quilt top because quite honestly I got a little carried away with it and made it a little bigger than what I have the equipment to handle it. First of all, I need a large area to lay the quilt out for the batting and pinning. I love my cozy little home, but floor space is not something I am blessed with.

Another issue I have is the actual "quilting". My little $100 brother sewing machine does not have quilting capabilities for something that large...heck, I have never even tried to machine quilt with my machine. The quilts that I have made in the past have been hand quilted which would be much too large of a job for this quilt. From my limited knowledge of quilting I believe I can pay someone to quilt it for me but then that would defeat the purpose of my frugality. So, as it stands I have a very large quilt top that I'm still contemplating what to do with....

I also did a couple of more bags. I really love this one I worked up from a little girls dress....

This one is from some old pj's and scraps.

I also made up a few Christmas themed bags
I was out running with Bo one morning and spotted this old office desk chair on the side of the road. I scooped it up and brought it home and recovered it in some retro fabric I found at a yard sale in Corpus Christi this past summer...

Summer suggested I make a Mindcraft Creeper into her desk chair. This is what I came up with....

My latest quilt project has been a lot of fun. Over the past few months I have been collecting bandannas from the Blue Hanger. I love the bright colors and designs on the bandannas. My ultimate goal was to collect enough to piece together a blocked bandanna quilt.

One morning I awoke around 4:00am with an inspiration to cut the bandannas up to give them a more geometric appearance rather than just blocking them. I also figured it would add more character than plain blocking....

Luckily this quilt top is small enough that I will be able to do the actual quilting myself.

Yep, that's about been it for me lately...sewing, creating and listening to music.


We all have choices. When somebody says they "Have No Other Choice" what they really mean is that the alternative is not an option they are willing to take.. The question is, are we willing to make a choice based on the consequence it may or may not produce??

There is always a choice. The question is just what is the best choice/alternative.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Halloween 2012

Holidays are usually pretty lonely business for Summer and I. Toby works most holidays except for Christmas day so we were really excited about Halloween falling on his usual day off this year.

That and the fact that Halloween is one of our favorite holidays we were excited about making this one extra special. I have to say that it was a success.

Toby usually does the pumpkin carving with Summer's assistance. This year she did the eyes and the nose all by herself...

Thanks to Pinterest I made a yummy batch of pumpkin seeds. Between the three of us they didn't last long at all!!

Toby and I also dressed up this year. Toby has dressed up in prior years but this is the first time I threw on a disguise myself.  My goal was not to be cute but to be able to trick or treat with Summer with my identity as an adult disguised. Pretending to be a kid was the most fun I have had in a very long time...

Summer was an alien this year. In the past several months she has taken an interest in aliens and has even suggested we take a trip to Roswell, New Mexico...and of course I never turn down the idea of a good ole' road trip...

After we got home from trick or treating we enjoyed  hanging out with our neighbors and handing out candy (and scaring) the stragglers. In my memory bucket this Halloween will go down as one of my favorites....