Monday, December 21, 2020

Wildlife sightings


We had a blast at the Virtual Retreat -- AGAIN!!!  A huge thank you to everyone who stopped by to say hello, or stayed to sew and chat, and contributed to the merriment! I LOVE virtual retreats. They may not be my most productive days, but they do help to pass the time. 

We got technology tips - thanks to France and Morgan for their input. We got tips on where to buy fabrics, what to do during the extended lockdown, a source for recipes, thanks to Anita, and we got to see a cool steam iron (thanks to Susan) and a whole lot more. Of course, I'm not sharing the details with you - you had to be there! 

Of course, they asked for the dates for the next Virtual Retreats. So mark this on your calendar - January 30 (in the evening) and all day on January 31. February, March, and April are also booked for the LAST weekend. Saturday night and all day Sunday!! What fun!!

But as we discussed our plans for the holidays, MANY people will be at home with their OWN household and will have a lot of time on their hands. Bandwidths may be totally crazy, but I'm going to host a TWO-HOUR sewing session (or just come to chat) on Christmas Day. It'll run from 1 PM EST - 3 PM. So if you're home alone or you've nothing better to do, stop by and wish us all a Merry Christmas. Bring some hand-sewing, or fire up your sewing machine. 

So what did I get done yesterday? Oh my - it was a most productive day, and I could have done a ton more if I wasn't talking so much! Although I did talk less yesterday and worked a bit more. I'm thrilled with my progress. 

One more customer quilt got quilted. That leaves ONE more to quilt for this customer. Then all three of them need to be bound. I hope to work on the bindings today and to get those out the door on Wednesday. Just in time to be given as gifts on Friday. 

Customer quilt

I thought I'd share the coloring of this quilt. Look at that wild sashing! Yep - that's a pretty wild sashing with the orange and the complementary blue. 

A wild sashing for a scrap quilt

But look at the back!!!!  Yep - it's completely made with that orange and blue fabric. It's a bit hard on the eyes, to say the least! Not my quilt! But I'm going to bind the quilt in that same fabric. I might have to put my sunglasses on! 

The back of the customer quilt

Look what else got finished yesterday. Yep - the T-shirt quilt is done! Well, the top is done, and that was my goal. I now have to make the backing, which I hope to get done today, and then I have to make the binding. 

The T-shirt quilt

And now that space at the bottom of the stairs is EMPTY!! First time since the basement floor was redone. I hope to keep it this way. Well, that's not true - I'm going to set up a small table (or two) and use it for paper crafts or mixed media. Yes - I could use the tables on the other side of the room, but all the supplies are in this area. 

The space at the bottom of the stairs

Speaking of T-shirt quilts, I have this HUGE mound of stuff that I have squirreled away for years, hoping to make a couple of memory quilts. I might just dig that out and get them made. I've stopped collecting (more or less), and now would be a good time. As you can see, once you get the basic layout, it doesn't take long to assemble. 

My pile of T-shirts to deal with

I belong to the Breakfast Club at Thimbles and Things, and each month, we're given a small task to do to earn an additional point. Oh yes - it doesn't take much more incentive than that for me to bake cookies, make a donation, etc.! It's totally crazy. 

What will the task be this month? Well, I was a little taken aback when Sue announced that the task was to focus on cleaning up your sewing area. OH! Well, what am I going to clean or tidy up since a good part of my studio is in pretty good shape. Do you know how good that felt to know that I didn't really have any major issues to deal with? 

Most like things have been collected into the same area but probably need to be sorted, culled, and put nicely back on the shelves. I decided that it's time to deal with those TWO tables of current projects. So, I started on one table, took the items, and literally found holes in the existing shelves of projects and tucked them here and there. I know - I'll never find them again or at least for a long time, but I know where I'm putting them. I'm not worried. 

One table of projects to put away

When it comes time to pack for a retreat or a sewing day, or that I actually need to pull something to work on, I'll just evaluate the shelves and grab a project or two. No need to stack those tables high with stuff when I can't work on more than one or two at a time. 

So there I was with my headphones, listening to that thriller book and tidying up. I'm not there yet, but it's starting to look better. I should have one table cleared off by the end of today. And I pulled all that stuff that I had shoved under the long arm back out. I need to finish sorting that. 

Things are definitely looking up, and it's so much easier to keep things tidy. I'm so close! When I feel the need to clean, (well there's always the office), I can pull out a section (like thread) and get it super organized. But at least all like things will be together. Then one day, I'll catalog all the UFOs on the shelves. At least, they're on a shelf and not cluttering up the workspace. 

Less time sorting and organizing, and more time sewing? And with the UFO club and my lists? I'm going to be ending the year off in excellent shape. I'm super excited!! 

At some point yesterday, when I was working, guess who came to visit. You have to admit that this little guy is pretty darn cute! I wonder what he was thinking. Come play with me?? Grandma - sewing is boring! 

Little Bear

Just as we were returning to the house after our walk, Murphy went on full alert. Oh  - just another squirrel. Nope - it was a HUGE opossum walking across the driveway. Good grief - she just has to chase ANYTHING that moves - leaves, squirrels, opossums. When I went back out with Miss Lexi, the opossum had crawled upon this rock. He's right behind the tree. 

A giant opossum

I know I've posted this before, but I LOVE when the charging cord matches the appliance's color. Wouldn't that be nice for everything? OK - so many things are black, so I must start labeling those darn charging cords!!!

Oh - the other thing that I made great progress on was my Cherrywood Challenge. Oh yes -- there's a LOT of work, and I had to redo some of it because I messed up the colors. I'm happy to report that I'm almost done with stage one and ready to move to stage two. Hopefully, that'll happen today. I was a bit worried about not having enough white fabric, but I think I'll be able to eke out just enough without using what Helen Anne lent me. That was so exciting to get ahead on that project. And once stage two is done, only the quilting and binding will be left. It's a 20" square, so that shouldn't take too long. I still have 11 days -- tons of time!

The list of things to get done before Christmas is almost done. Then there's the list of things to get done before the end of the year. Not huge, but keeping a list is keeping me focused. And note that I have NOT as yet, pulled UFO projects for 2021. I will, but not right now! 

On that note, I'm out of here! 

Have a super productive day, and remember - if you're going to be sitting around with nothing to do on Christmas Day, pop into our little session and say HI. Here's the Zoom link for that. 

Join Zoom Meeting Meeting ID: 850 7193 2657 Passcode: 872754


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