Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Clean up in Row H

Before I get to what I've been up to, I have to share this story because it's so funny. A couple of years ago, we started to go to the movies on Christmas Day. Why not? A couple of weeks ago, we decided the movie would be Star Wars and as a treat, we booked seats at the VIP theatre. Oh - let me rephrase that - it was DH's job to book the tickets. I remember him telling me, "I booked them and printed them right on my phone".  Before leaving yesterday, he hands me the tickets and I threw them in my purse.

We arrive at the theatre in plenty of time to order a drink and order our food which we would have delivered to our seats. Ah - nice and relaxing. Nothing like popcorn and a beer while you watch the trailers and just enjoy the nice seating.

I did think that the lounge was a tad quiet for a nearly sold-out movie that started in 40 minutes.

I handed the tickets to our server so he could take note of the seats to arrange delivery of the food. "AH - excuse me folks - but these are AVX tickets, NOT VIP. AVX is on the opposite side of the theatre." WHAT???  Can we switch theatres?"  DH goes to the desk and finds out that there is a 4 PM showing of Star Wars in the VIP theatre - it's now about 4:05. Yep - we should be good. Can the food be delivered? Yep - we should be good there too.  However the best-laid plans - it took forever for the tickets to be switched. And I should have gone and claimed our seats when we realized we could switch. Some codes had been changed in the system and didn't like what we were doing.

We arrived at our seats - that would be Row H, Seats 1 and 2 (on the right). The movie had already started and the theatre was pitch black. Remember this is Star Wars - it's a dark movie! Couldn't see a thing, but the moment I moved into the seats (thankfully we were by ourselves on the side row), I felt something fall over. OH NO - that would be my popcorn! The manager had assured us that they would NOT drop the food at the seats if we weren't there. Well guess what - they did! DH didn't even realize he had knocked his popcorn over and was grumbling that there was popcorn in his seat! 

The server comes with our HOT food - yep - we ordered that as well. So I had a wrap and a salad and NO IDEA what it looked like. Did I have a fork? DH had both of them. Oh - they put the dressing on the side. Yum - yum as I dipped my fingers into that! Now I know how a blind person must feel when they are served food. You need someone to tell you what is where or you have to feel it all up!

I don't think the server was too happy about several things. First that we dumped the popcorn on the floor and secondly that she had to bring us the food in the dark! I'm sure the people behind us weren't too happy either and I'm sorry for that!

Let's just say that when the lights came on - it was a mess!!!  There was popcorn all over the place. Our dirty dishes were on the floor. Thankfully I didn't drop my beer out of the cupholder. Oh no - I felt for that darn cupholder ever time I placed the bottle down!

There is a lesson to be learned here. Several lessons actually, but the most important one - CHECK the damn tickets. I think DH is going blind and he can't see the small print like on his phone!

It was a bit disconcerting to arrive a few minutes into the movie starting - oh yes - it's 3-D so where the heck are the stupid glasses, your food arrives in the dark - it took me about 10 minutes to get settled.

Let's just say - it was good for a laugh after the fact!

So that's my funny Christmas story! Now let's get into what happened the day before Christmas. I told you I was motivated and I'm going to get this all done even if it kills me!  Here's what happened.

I want to get those last few quilts done for the Ronald McDonald project - so I got myself organized. Here's the first one for the day.

Community project quilt - DONE

Community project quilt Number 2 - DONE
Community project quilt - Number 3 - DONE
On a roll here - might as well keep going. And so I got ONE more done for the day.
So yes - I got three more of the quilts done. That makes seven done and only TWO left. I had to make backings and piece batting. The backings are all together and the pieces for the last batting are set aside. The second to last quilt is loaded on the long arm and it will be done today! That leaves one small one as you can see below and my goal is to get that done today as well. 

One community project quilt left on the rack

So Jane --- better get ready for a big binding day!!!  I think some people went a little overboard with the sizes. The quilts were supposed to be 3 blocks by 4 or 4 blocks by 6 and yet some of these are a wee bit bigger than that. No worries - this batch is almost done and I know how to say NO now!!!  

But let's not just do one thing at a time. I can multi-task and I tell you that I'm on a roll here. I fired up the embroidery machine as well.  Look what happened......................

Halloween blocks are DONE

Yes -- ALL the blocks for the Halloween quilt are done!!!  All twenty-five of them. I did three of them on the day before Christmas and I completed the last two yesterday. I was determined and so at 5 AM, I got the second to last block started. 

Close up of two of the blocks done yesterday
Now you notice there is also a green block at the bottom. What's with that? That would be the sashing! Yes - there are a couple of options for the sashing or borders. I'm not sure what exactly I'm going to do, but if I need sashing, I need a LOT. I can stitch three of them in the hoop at one time. And there is only ONE thread color so that makes them somewhat easy!
Sashings for the Halloween quilt
All these blocks and sashing have a product underneath them called battilizer. It's a thin batting but helps to stabilize all those stitches. As I was using a big piece for the sashings, I remembered that we used this product for a rug project a couple of years ago. I still have the bag of scraps and sure enough - found that within seconds. I might have to join a few pieces, but I can easier use this up for the sashings. 

Scraps of battilizer
Between the long arm and the embroidery machine, I was using up spools of thread and bobbin thread like crazy!! And getting in a ton of Fitbit steps as the machines are in opposite corners of the studio. 

But that's not all!  I managed to get ALL the applique done for the Amish With a Twist. OH MY GOD - that's huge! It's not my best applique job, but it's done and that's all I care about at this point. 

Applique borders for Amish With a T
Sometimes the embroidery machine doesn't like to finish off the spool of bobbin thread so I save them and they were perfect to use on the other machine for applique. 
Empty bobbin and full bobbin of pre-wound bobbins
I love having two machines going at the same time, but in future when I've got huge embroidery jobs, I prefer to NOT sit right beside the machine - it's noisy. I'm going to have to get earplugs or something. 

When I sat down to piece the backings for those two community project quilts, I thought it funny that the needle wasn't quite as dead center as I thought it should be. No worries - it didn't break.  BUT when I went to do the applique and had a much different foot on the machine, I noticed that the needle was rather bent. How the heck did that happen? 

Bent needle
It's hard to tell in the photo, but trust me - it's bent!

When I had a wee bit of downtime, I was trimming half square triangles. I'm almost done with this set of green and white ones.  What to make? what to make? A mini quilt of some kind to be sure!

Trimming half square triangles

Whew, wasn't that exhausting!  I was so happy to get some of those ugly jobs done! They've been hanging around forever. Now the big thing is - can I actually get those borders on before the end of the year? And how many of the remaining projects can be done? There are SIX days left. Six days when I don't have any commitments per se.  Let's forge ahead!

Oh - I should mention that I had to write some QUILTsocial blog posts that were out of my normal schedule. I forgot to post the links yesterday.  Here are the first two.

QUILTsocial - Monday   - All about Northcott basics

QUILTsocial - Tuesday  - working with digital "fabrics" to design quilts

On that note, I have two very impatient girls who are demanding to go for their walk!

Have a super day!!!



  1. Loved your movie story...but aren't those VIP seats something!
    ALways beautiful quilting to see here!

    1. Jocelyn - thanks! Those VIP seats are amazing but I feel we got cheated as we couldn't really enjoy them - too stressed out from the experience! Have a great day!