Friday, May 31, 2013

Why everyone should have a teenager!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yesterday was another crazy day. I drove M to her casting appointment. I don't understand why the people requesting the casting do NOT look at the pictures of the models BEFORE they call in the models. There were about 30 girls sitting in the room.

They were told if you do NOT want a drastic cut or colour, then this is not for you. Why didn't they say that in the actual preliminary information e-mail??  Then the requestor (or whatever you want to call them) came in - looked at one girl (of a certain ethnic background), then looked at another girl (of a different ethnic background - said - "they would look good together") and said to the rest - GO HOME. Took less than one minute.

If they wanted ethnic background girls - why didn't they ask for them??????   Anyway - I just think this whole casting/model business is a HUGE waste of time.

BUT - I did NOT waste my time. I turned my car into an office away from home. I used my phone (on the Bluetooth) and made TONS of calls. I got appointments rescheduled or booked, paid bills, got questions answered and was VERY productive for that 1/2 hour that I waited.

I probably wouldn't have gotten all that accomplished if I had been at home. One good reason to have a teenager. Forces the parent to get creative and productive with their time.

Then home and worked on a quilt (I'll show you in a minute). Groceries and various other things got done. My sewing machine needs repair BADLY. I called Sewing Machines Etcetera in Burlington because they have pretty fast turnaround for machine repair. Hmmmmmm - yes they might be able to repair it on Friday, but ONLY if they have other machines come in and at that point, my machine was the only one booked. She suggested I call at 4 PM and see if they have had any other machines come in. I call at 4 PM (when we are at the grocery store) and YES - it is a go for the machine repair on Friday. Now I have to finish groceries and get to Burlington (in rush hour traffic) before 5:30 PM and I am not 100% sure where the store is. Hmmmmmm - HEY M - want to go for a car ride????

Then it was a question of "take the highway or the back roads"????  M was on her phone with the traffic report and we decided to take the highway WHICH has a CAR POOL lane (I had forgotten that part). So thanks to M, we were able to ZIP along the highway and made it to our destination is very short time. Then on the way home, after a bit of deliberation, we decided to take the highway home again (and again used the car pool lane). We were home VERY quickly. Here are TWO more reasons to have a teenager - they can focus on the traffic and directions AND allow one to use the car pool lanes.

While we are in the car, we have some of our best discussions and yesterday was no exception. We talked about a couple of upcoming projects that I am working on - discussing pros and cons to various techniques and styles. I am blessed with a creative (mostly cooperative) teen and I LOVE HER TO DEATH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    Thanks for the great day M!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We also visited the store next door to the sewing machine shop. It is called Spun Fibre Arts and while it is mostly a knitting store - they have rovings, buttons, patterns and LOADS of stuff. I picked up a couple of creative things, but NOT knitting.

Picked up my bike from the shop - going to test ride it tomorrow to see how it works. I debated riding with the Lifetime cycle club last night, but the weather was sketchy and we weren't quite home by the time they were supposed to start. Got home to find out that the ride was cancelled and then it didn't rain!!!!!!!!

Went to Ruti's and picked up some of the NEW O CANADA fabric by Northcott. Not sure what I am going to do with it yet, but I love the new prints and will go nicely with the original line.

Original O Canada

O Canada II
I only bought a few of each line - but check out the rest at this link..............

O Canada - Original Line

O Canada - II

Some pretty cool stuff -just not sure what to make, but I got enough to make something neat.

I got the quilt finished while M was making dinner (yet ANOTHER reason to have a teenager). YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Customer Quilt

Detail of quilting

I decided to try another restorative yoga class at 9 PM. The gym was still hopping at that time. The class was FULL, but NOT PACKED which is good. Now picture the environment - warm, but not hot, dimmed lights, dead quiet and a room full of people lying flat on their back on their mats. I always wondered if people fell asleep in yoga - I have sort of dozed off once or twice. Well last night - some guy in the back was SNORING away for at least 10 minutes before he woke up. I was trying so hard not to laugh!!!!!!!!!!!!!

But it was a GREAT class - I feel so loose today and very little pain in any of the joints!!!!!!   Yippppeeeeeeee!!!!   And I have to say that I had one of the best sleeps last night that I have had in a LONG time. Guess I should try more yoga before bed in the future!!!!!!!!!!!!

Back in spin class this morning - I know - that makes FOUR this week. I remember laughing at George on Tour Atlantic last year. He sometimes did four spin classes a week while he was training. Now he was a retired cop and I think he had NOTHING else to do, but it is efficient training for me. I hope to get out on my bike with the LifeTime cycle club tomorrow morning.

I know - all this exercise!!! - now if I could just STOP drinking that damn hot chocolate, I could be sporting a six pack chest!!!!!!!!!!!!!   Well I doubt that!!! - but I can dream!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

More quilts on the agenda for today, a couple of appointments, but at least I am FINISHED with the gym for the day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   And while the weather is hot - our house is actually quite cool - the basement is like a fridge  - perfect day to be inside.

On that note - I had better get started

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Thursday, May 30, 2013

I WANT ONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I love how my friends take care of me!!!   Always on the lookout for something different.

Jeanette just came back from a trip to the British Isles on a quilting themed vacation. How lucky!!!!!   While she was browsing the shops - look what she unearthed.................

an ORANGE SEWING MACHINE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!      How cool is that!!!!!

Who would have thought that someone would make an ORANGE sewing machine. That just blows my mind. I think I am going to have to move to Europe - so many cool things there. OK - so we have lots of cool things here as well. And I think I am going to need a new sewing machine soon!!!!   Well - I must get mine serviced FAST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

For those of you who don't like orange - how about a polka dot one..............

Two polka dot versions. And only 49 Pounds!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Look what else she spotted.................

Upholstery bike fabric - now who wouldn't want drapes made from this or perhaps your sofa or chair??????   I mean why not - life is too short to be boring!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jeanette - thanks so much for thinking of me while on your vacation. And thanks for the pictures. I LOVE THEM. 

No quilting yesterday either. I know - this is NOT a good thing, but TODAY. What I need is to get rid of my kid!!!!!!!!!!!   She had to do a writing sample for Humber yesterday so that took a couple of hours. At least, I took my laptop because I had some computer work to do and I got a decent start on that project. Plus I had a class to teach in the morning. 

Then I have to confess that I had a long nap in the afternoon. I MUST MUST MUST eat better - with the increase in exercise, my body isn't coping as well as I would like. 

Went to TWO spin classes yesterday. Oh yippeee!!!!!!!!!!!   I am really really enjoying them and the whole atmosphere at the gym. 

On that note - I have to make this short this morning because I have yet ANOTHER appointment to take M to this morning. And yes while she can drive herself, I would prefer that she stick to our area for the moment - not zipping around downtown (and not in my car by herself). 

Oh well - just have to make a big push and get as much done as I can. Can't do more than that and I MUST start thinking of packing soon. I am a last minute packer and I have packed in my head so I know exactly what has to be pulled out. 

Have a good day................


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Nothing is NEW!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have become a gym junky!  I went to restorative yoga yesterday and I am in LOVE. I love love love that class. Gentle stretching that I am not all that good at - well I am NOT that flexible and flexibility is one area where many people fail in a fitness assessment. Unfortunately the times of those classes are NOT the best for me, but I am going to try and make them a priority - NOW and when I come back.

There is ONE negative about the class - you MUST pay attention. It would be easy to drift off and have a snooze - it is low key. Or the regulars have moved onto the next move while you haven't been paying attention to the instructor and look like a dork!!!!   NO ONE cares - it is dark in the room. And surprising to see women and men of all ages, sizes and shapes and many of them are quite flexible.

Back in spin class this morning and another tonight. At first I wasn't sure if I liked the Wednesday morning instructor for spin class, but she has LOTS of information to pass along and I really like her now. One of her PROFOUND statements today is "Exercise does NOT compensate for a bad diet!"  Or something to that effect. So basically if you exercise, that does NOT mean you can eat badly. You can go off the wagon temporarily, but once you start exercising - you really don't want the junk.

However, I have to say that you MUST eat small meals often. DO NOT let yourself get hungry. I had a quick small lunch yesterday and NOTHING else in the car to eat. When we went to Homesense, I saw a bag of chips near the cash and I could NOT stop thinking about those stupid chips and so I stopped at the grocery store on the way home. I NEVER buy chips. I MUST MUST MUST keep my belly full!!!!  Oh yes - I am happy to report that the yoga helped my tail bone issue a LOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   It is not perfect, but maybe it is just tight??????

I got NO QUILTING done yesterday. We had to get some white satin for sashes for the upcoming prom. Fabricland has some, but too pricey so M and I went downtown to Designer Fabrics. Oh - I love this store. They used to have quilting/clothing cottons, but nothing now - just shirtings - lots and lots of shirtings (in the cotton section).

We browsed all the aisles, looking at lace that was in the HUNDREDS of dollars per yard. We also saw some other fancy fabrics - $900 a meter. That is NOT a typo. Holy cow - what would you do with them? And do they sell it????   They must.

Well our total purchase was $71 including tax - we bought the white satin, some peach dress stuff for M to mess around and make a dress and look what I bought......................

PRE MADE flowers - they are so cute!!!!!   No idea what I am going to do with them, but they are CUTE!!!!!!

And some gorgeous buttons

And LOOK - sparkly ORANGE tulle!!!!!!   How cool is that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Then back home and a GOOD HEALTHY dinner, but quick and then off to an evening of inspiration with the Finishing Group. Oh we have some AWESOME plans for the fall, but I can't tell you about them - not yet.

Oh yes - I did wander the aisles in Chapters to see if I could find a book title to use for the upcoming guild challenge at Halton Hills Guild. And FINALLY, I found something that I think will work PERFECTLY. M and I discussed it in the car and we have the project all designed. It is simple, yet should be pretty. I like that.

The other night, the Halton Hills Guild had Jackie Sauer as a speaker. One of her quilts was a pineapple. Oh that is nice, but I had a good laugh when I looked at the quilting..............

Quilting on Jackie's pineapple quilt

While it is hard to see, this is the quilting on MY pineapple quilt which was done years ago. 

It is IDENTICAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    I think I figured this out on my own - I still have the work sheet.  Nothing is NEW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   (or original or perhaps great minds think alike!!)  (Jackie did NOT do the quilting - someone else did)

Well - it is time to get to work - I've had a HEALTHY breakfast and ready to roll. I know I sound like a crazy person, but the working out and eating healthy, just makes me feel so much better and I can get so much done. Although it was (and is) a lot of money for that gym, it is WORTH EVERY PENNY!!!!!!!!!!!!! M was up and did the hot yoga class this morning. How many 17 year old would get up for a 6 AM hot yoga class?????   Life Time ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Taming the Jungle Part 2

Amazing what team work can do.

I had casually mentioned to M, that I would appreciate it if Berke could help us with some of the dirt moving. After I taught my class on Sunday afternoon, I arrived home to find Berke "ready and eager" to work.

First we took an assessment of the situation. Hmmmmm - there is another side garden between the Secret Garden and the front of the house, BUT it was VERY overgrown. It is also the easiest way to get into the backyard with a wheel barrow. SO......................   out came the trimmers and clippers. A few snips later and VOILA - there is a path to the backyard.

Trimming the jungle

More trimming

Those branches on the left completely covered that open area. Right to the white fence. It was TIME to get rid of that!!!!!    I want to completely get rid of those shrubs on the left, but what to replace them with??????

Sparky enjoying a luscious moment on the grass. We have no grass in our backyard and she loves to lie in the grass. 
Sammy standing guard on the front step

Once the pathway was clear - we quickly got a system going. OH - but another surprise awaited me - DH decided to help out. Well with FOUR people, three shovels, two wheelbarrows and a rake - that dirt and mulch was flying.

Berke - hard at work - oooops

Berke HARD at work

Here comes another load of mulch

Even the princes was helping

She was the official dirt/mulch spreader

Nice job!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And now the Secret Garden looks awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ooops - they forgot that when the gate gets closed - there is now am EMPTY spot right at the gate!!!!!!!!!!!!   I need to buy some patio stones to go under the gate. Dear little Sammy has learned that she can dig her way out of here and then escapes onto the street. She has been caught NUMEROUS times. I have blocked up the hole with a log, but I don't want that to be a permanent situation. 

Bottom line - I couldn't keep ahead of them in clearing the weeds. But I made a HUGE advancement on the weeding and trimming. I figure another couple of hours and everything will be done. We are planning another dirt/mulch slinging party this coming weekend. Anyone want to join us??????

It really was a lot of fun!!!  Trust me.

And we almost got through TWO of those big bags - one of dirt and one of mulch. We will certainly not run out, but we won't have much left over either. But I will find a spot for it all.

Now I have to tackle the front yard which has periwinkle, but the grass has grown into the periwinkle. I decided to bite the bullet and pull it out up. Oh should I say that I am DIGGING it up. What a pain - thank goodness the area is NOT big.

I managed to eek out another quilt - I made the deadline!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   I am still in the double digits as far as number to be done before I leave, but I am feeling in good shape!!!!!

Customer quilt

Detail of customer quilt

On that note - I am off to yoga this morning. There are FOUR major kinds of yoga - I am doing restorative yoga. I don't need anything aerobic in my yoga class. But I desperately need the stretching.

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   (It is raining, but that makes it a perfect day to get some quilting done or some paperwork and NOT feel guilty because I am not outside)


Sunday, May 26, 2013

Taming the jungle................

After getting home from the $10 class yesterday, I had TWO choices - I could garden or I could quilt. Well - if I garden first, then when it is darker, I could quilt, so I donned my GARDENING gloves and set off for the garden.

After guilting M into helping, we had a great couple of hours digging weeds, pruning trees and cleaning up. I was shocked to see that it was almost 4 PM when we came in the house. We had been at it for about 2 hours. Yikes - still a LONG LONG way to go, but every little bit helps. Have a look at what we did.........

I got rid of ALL of the grape vine (boy does it get tangled up with EVERYTHING) and that is M hauling it to the forest. I didn't take a picture of it, but the stump of this vine is ICKY now as the sap kept seeping out after I cut it off and it looks GROSS!!!!!!!!   I know the thing is FAR from dead, but I am going to find a way to inject it with my herbicide and see if that won't get rid of it. 

Then I asked M to get the camera and well - MANY pictures later (and blurry - good grief - the camera has AUTO FOCUS and yet 90% of the pictures were blurred).

Hard to tell in this picture, but there is still loads to be done. 

Sparky - enjoying the coolness of the dirt

On my hands and knees pulling weeds and trimming back branches. 

Are you taking a picture of my butt???   Don't take a picture of my butt!!!!   At least it was from the side which is slimming!!!!!!!!!!!!!

HELP - trapped in the garden!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

M had fun picking up the mulch and dirt - well we didn't really need to get rid of that, but that's OK. 

Hey - don't forget about ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    I was helping - well I was supervising!!!!! And I'm just darn CUTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And this is what it looks like this morning. To the left of the path in the Secret Garden

To the right (amazing how these silly trees just grow and grow and grow) 

Looking from the Secret Garden into the back yard

The trellis chair in the Secret Garden

And OH BOY - look at what we have in our driveway. YEP  - that would be FOUR big bags. Two are dirt and two are mulch. Guess what I will be doing later today!!!!   We have to get the dirt and mulch down in that area that we have cleaned up. Then onto the next section. 

Then we had to do a bit of shopping and we went to my favourite store - HOMESENSE. There isn't a week goes by that they don't have something new that I LOVE - that is either bicycle related or is orange. I try to restrain myself, but yesterday - well I just couldn't. The customer behind me even asked me if I happened to like orange as I am holding my orange purse and this.................

An orange watering can!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   

We told her that we were buying something else and YES - it was also orange. We were just waiting for a price to be put on it. What do you think..........................

I have always wanted a seat in the hall where we could sit to put on shoes. A bench is too big even though the hall is big. But this is PERFECT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I sheepishly pulled my orange wallet out of my orange purse to pay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   It is getting to be an obsession.

Speaking of obsessions, I have a confession to make. Remember how I said that DH needs to place the cutlery in it proper slot in the drawer. Well - I don't care about cutlery, but I LOVE to organize the magazines in the craft section at Chapters!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   I know - how absolutely weird that is.

Once the shopping and the gardening was done, then it was time to hit the studio.

Customer quilt

Made some advancement on the postcards

Yes - I managed to get one of the two quilts done that I want to have finished by Monday. My legs were pretty tired by the end of the day and I was in bed before 10 PM.

And so dawns another day with loads of fun - more gardening, teaching and quilting. YIPPPPPEEEEEE - my favourite things.

I am in DESPERATE need of a new bobbin case for my sewing machine. The darn bobbin thread won't stay in the tension slot. And there is something wrong with the tension on top. I have one binding to put on a quilt and then I am going to move the old sewing machine to the work table - well I could do it now I suppose. I still have things to sew and this machine is driving me crazy.

Have you ever had weird dreams?  Well last night I had a very strange dream. When I was younger (and I don't remember how young) I had a TERRIBLE dream about this haunted house. A murder had occurred on the third floor and it was haunted. I remember wanting to go up to the third floor, but couldn't get myself to go up there. Last night, I had a dream about that same house, but this time I was going to confront what was on the third floor. I was waiting for someone to come with me, but then that was the end of the dream. Is that weird or what???????

Anyway - on that strange note - it is time to get another quilt on the machine.

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Dear Jane reveal for May

It is time to get serious on getting this Dear Jane quilt and sometimes in order to do that you have to slow down and smell the roses along the way.

As a group we decided to slow down the process. Making 10 or 11 blocks EACH month is a  HUGE task and while many have kept up more or less, a number were slipping behind. So we have decided to extend the project to June 2014 (yeah!!!) and then each month they will get 5 blocks to do. But that doesn't mean they are off the hook - they had better get serious about catching up because now they will have time to do that and they HAVE to start sewing the quilt together.

Anyway - here are the blocks that we had for show n tell this past month.



Sharon  (picture 1)

Sharon (picture 2). She has started to sew the columns together. This makes it exciting when you start to see the quilt being put together - not just a bunch of blocks. This is what I expect every month from now on!!!!!!!!!!!







A few people were missing, someone lost their blocks (hopefully only temporarily!!), but overall, they are doing an amazing job!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!    I cannot wait to see the finished quilts in June 2014!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We had Snow Days class afterwards and I will post those pictures on another day.

Have a great day!!!!!!!!!!!!