Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Back to normal

That's a bizarre statement because what is normal these days? For the most part, our household didn't get too out of whack with the pandemic, unlike others which have been turned upside down. 

But at least, I'm back home, and the girls are happy with their walk. And it's back to deadlines.

I got a great idea from Linda about what to do with leftover pieces of quilted fabric. And I've got some more quilted fabric. I'm digging it out -well, it's already out and - well watch for what I'm going to do with it. I'll get it prepped for the next retreat.

Our dinnertime conversations are never dull. The other night we got to talking about common sense. The question was, "Why do we need so many rules about the pandemic? Why don't we just trust people to use their common sense?" At that point, I had to pick myself up off the floor because I was laughing so hard. Common sense? There is NO such thing anymore. Common sense and respect? It would appear that those traits have all but disappeared.

I snapped this picture yesterday morning on our walk. There's a garbage can right by the post. On the post is a sign saying there's a $305 fine for littering, which I don't think is ever enforced. And a mere 30 feet away is a discarded drink cup.


Never mind the number of disposal masks littering the walkways. Gloves and I have no idea how much other kinds of trash are on the streets. I don't get it. You can carry that drink container with a drink in it, but the minute it's done, it's no longer "cool" to carry it to the garbage? Who do they think is going to pick the trash up??

There's a man who lives in the same apartment building as my parents. EVERY DAY, he heads out with a  garbage bag and a pick-up stick. He collects a BAG of garbage every day in their neighborhood. Why is that? It gives him something to do, and I applaud him, but seriously? Where are people's heads? Keep that garbage in your car until you get home and then, just bring it in the house. Why is that so hard to do?

Anyway, I'm way off the quilting topic, but relying on society's common sense to do the right thing? I don't think that's going to happen.

I wanted to share the new mask style that I made. I do NOT plan on making tons of masks, but I thought I'd make a template in case I want to make a couple more. A written pattern and a video are available on the Thimbles and Things web site.  It's called Jen's 3-D mask.

Template for making the mask 

Here's my mask that I made at the retreat. I love the big flat surface on the front, and this was the only bicycle fabric at Thimbles and Things. It's sitting a bit high under my eyes - I just put it on quickly to snap the photo.

My new mask

Katheleen adjusted the size of the mask to accommodate t-shirt ties on the sides instead of using elastic. I love this style. It's slightly more cumbersome to put in your pocket (when it's not needed) than the pleated mask, but way more comfortable to wear and very easy to make.

The side view

My MIL needed a mask, and it had to be WHITE - both sides. I got the mask made yesterday.

A white mask
In case you don't know how that style works, you slip that loop over your neck and tighten it, so the loop is behind your head. Then pull the strings tight and tie the loose ends behind your head. Easy!!!

I happened to have part of a t-shirt that I found in the bags of donated scraps. That t-shirt was sitting on the cutting table in Studio U, and I had no idea what to do with it.

T-shirt bits

So I cut the body part into 1" strips for the masks, and the sleeves went in the scrap pile. So now the template and 10 strips of t-shirt material are in a bag labeled "masks." I do want to make one more mask for myself, and then the rest of the strips are there in case anyone asks me for a mask. I think that if we're making a mask for a friend, family member, or ourselves, that we should have fun with the fabric. Get creative with it, personalize it - I have a feeling that we're going to be wearing masks for a long time!

Strips of the t-shirt fabric for the mask ties

Remember the Junque Journal that Katheleen made for us? Well, the idea is to fill it with memories - momentous or whatever. The last morning at the retreat, when I was out walking, I happened to find some poker chips on the side of the road. SEVEN of them. Lucky number seven! Oh, yes - I picked them up. There were six of us at the retreat, so each person took one, and I ended up with two. I have them set aside to put in my Junque Journal!!!

Poker chips

They'll be good reminders of all the walking that I've been doing.

When I was cleaning up from the retreat, I found this little charm that I had purchased recently. It coordinates perfectly with my new bicycle-themed zippered pouch.

Zipper pull

It was Monday sewing!!!!  My favorite day of the week. It was good to catch up with everyone. I can't imagine not having our weekly Zoom meeting. We'd all be sitting at home totally disconnected from the group.  It's been a lifesaver. I wonder if we'll ever go back to actually sewing in a room together?

So what did I work on? Well, you know I'm a bit of a procrastinator. I wanted to make one of the challenges for Quilt Canada. Of course, Quilt Canada got canceled, but they decided to continue on with the challenges. They have a modern challenge - Try A Triad Challenge. Using three solids - red, blue, and yellow. The last day to enter online is tomorrow. I had been tossing several ideas around in my head and even took the fabrics to the retreat. Nothing came to mind. Well, nothing that I settled on.

Yesterday morning, I lay in bed, tossing more ideas and, at last, was able to solidify the idea that had been percolating there for a while. So I worked on the challenge while we sewed with the Monday group. The top is together. OK - I'm kidding. The piece is almost finished. And it's very heavily quilted. I did it on the domestic sewing machine. I'm guessing it's going to take another 15 minutes to finish the quilting. It's going to get bound this morning, and the entry form filled out. Then I can cross that one off my list.

Why do I wait? I don't seem to get any inspiration until the last minute. I have no idea why that happens. Anyway, I'll meet the deadline. There's going to be an online quilt show, and I'll share the link with you when the entries get posted. I can't wait to see how everyone interpreted the three colors.

I won't tell you what else is due this week - let's just say that we've got some "quilt in a day" projects to get done!

The lilies in the pond are flourishing in this hot weather. I think we have six or seven blooms in there at the moment. Happy happy lilies!!!

The lily pads

 We have a lot of goldfish. These are the 49 cents goldfish that are used as feeder fish. They have flourished in the pond. Yesterday, Nancy and her husband came by to relieve me of some of those fish.

Fish going on a trip

 Thankfully, Greg is used to catching fish in their own pond. I don't think I would have been successful. He managed to snag 10 of them. That's great as I've heard that fish don't grow larger than the pond that supports them. In our case, we had too many. I'm glad to see them go and I hope they have fun in their new home!!!

Fishing in the pond

Well, it's time to get the day started. There are packages to track down - you don't want to know, quilts to design, fabric to request, quilts to cut, and well - it's going to be another busy day!!!

I almost finished reading my book yesterday. I'm about 20 pages from the end of a murder mystery and just too tired to finish it!! So much for excitement keeping me awake at night!!

I keep forgetting -- YES - there is a Virtual Retreat on Saturday, July 18 and Sunday, July 19.  10 AM -- 8 PM.  I'll be posting the links.

Have a super day!!!!


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