Friday, March 31, 2023

Be flexible!!!

 It's my final morning in Montreal - at least for this trip, and I have to say that I'm looking forward to going home! I love going away, but the day I go home is always the best! I have two lectures to present today and then an evening flight. 

I see I got an e-mail regarding the weather and my flight. Snow flurries later today, but hopefully, all will be fine, as I would very much like to get home tonight, as I have a full day planned for tomorrow. If I don't, well, I'll figure something out. I'm flexible!

That's the word of the day -- be flexible, and don't let them see you sweat. Let's just say that I wasn't as prepared as I wanted to be because, in my head, I had a different lecture than was actually planned for the day, but by being flexible and having samples, it all worked out! I have to laugh, though -- it's easy to laugh after the fact. This was the presentation that was bugging me the most. Then I arrived and wasn't as prepped as I would like and had to present it for the first time in French! Of course! 

I didn't rent a car, and I'm relying on UBER to get me around, which is fine. Don't tell DH that because it took forever for me to try UBER, and now that I have, I'm sold on how easy it is to use the service. It's all done on an app on your phone -- you request the ride. they have the address where to pick you up and drop you off in their GPS, and you don't need to tell them anything. Even the payment is taken care of through the app. 

So super simple, so if you do NOT use UBER, try it. I'm probably paying the same as if I had rented a car for these two days, and I don't have the hassle of driving in the traffic. 

Did I mention that the fellow who picked me up saw that giant suitcase of mine and put it in and out of the van, which was great since the darn thing weighs 50 pounds, and I hate lifting it! I hate traveling with that suitcase, but I have no choice when I do classes or lectures! It stayed overnight at the store, so I don't have to worry about it this morning. 

The only thing that is "complicated" here is that there are no license plates on the front of the cars. While you have the make and color of the car (that's in the app), the best way to check you have the correct ride is to check the license plate! Oh well --- I'm going from the hotel to the store -- I doubt there will be a rush on UBERS arriving simultaneously at either location. 

Being at Club Tissus is like being a kid in a candy store. They have everything, but at the moment, they are down in the fabric, and signs say they are making some changes in the store. That's probably a good thing since I won't be tempted, but I found a lovely stretch twill that I will buy to make a pair of pants. 

With all the talk of making garments these days and having access to a serger and a Ditto, I'm going to venture down that road -- at least to try more seam finishes, techniques, etc. 

The presentations went well, although there are still so many terms that I need to learn in French. The group was very helpful, as was the store employee who sat in the presentation. I always explain that French is not my native language - just so they know. One person even said that my French is pretty good, and I suppose it is. However, there are some tongue twisters, to be certain, and if you want the correct pronunciation and accent, it takes a moment to get it out. They were all lovely and patient! 

When I lived here, I'd practice certain words in the car while driving so no one could hear me! I will have to start that again, but on my walks! You only realize how many terms there are for sewing, quilting, and garment making once you have to say them in another language!

Now my embroidery software and phone have been converted to French, which takes some time. But it all works out in the end. 

I got back to the hotel close to 6 PM and debated on the walk. I had not done many steps in the day, so I got my jacket and walked. I would have been mad at myself this morning if I didn't. It was pleasant enough, and I'm happy I went. I'm a wee bit behind the daily goal at the moment, and I suspect I'll fall further behind today since I won't have much time to walk, although I'm going out in a few minutes. It's easy to make up a KM or two, but more than 10 KM and only 25 days left -- I have to keep on top of it. 

When I mention that Club Tissus has everything, look at this. They have several riveting machines in the store, and I imagine they are there and can be rented - or rent time. This would be super handy as there are times when I want to put rivets on, but I don't have a heavy-duty machine to use, so I try something else. 

Rivet tool

And all patterns are labeled "in English only" if there are no instructions in French. 

English only

I could fit right in this French world and not blink an eye, and within several months, my French would be much better. Perhaps I need to do a "co-op" here! Surprisingly enough, the majority of guests at the hotel speak English. I got in the elevator last night with several people and asked for "trois." They looked at me with a blank stare!

I hoped to stop by the bakery last night, but it was closed when I went by. But the chocolate and the baking look amazing! Perhaps the next trip!

The bakery and chocolate shop

This was a pedestrian bridge across the highway to a park on the banks of the St. Lawrence seaway (river), and there was a lookout at the end, but it was closed. 

The walkway

And there is downtown or Centre-Ville de Montreal with the mountain to the right. I remember when Place Ville Marie was very prominent, but it's now lost amongst the other buildings.  

Downtown Montreal

The infrastructure for cycling here is fantastic -- bike paths are everywhere, and they are BIG, or wide. Oh well -- -we are making inroads back home, but I doubt it'll be the same as here. 

I'd better organize myself as I have to pack a few things in my suitcase, go for a walk, have breakfast, and then get to the store this morning. 

I just checked the weather forecast, and it's in Toronto, where we have snow today. Please don't let it affect my flight! 

Remember to check out QUILTsocial to see the progress on the collage journal cover! Such an excellent way to try new techniques or use up odds and ends of stuff in your house! We had a good chat about that in one of the lectures yesterday, and there are so many ways you could do the same thing -- journal covers, wall hangings, cushions, fidget quilts for adults or children, tote bags, etc. Get your stuff out and start planning! Well, I don't plan; I just do!

On that note, I'm out of here! 

Have a super day!!!


Thursday, March 30, 2023

Adventure Lab adventures!

OH --- what a slug this morning. Thankfully, new beds do not bother me, so I've been sleeping well. However, I had noisy neighbors last night, and then during the night, the temperature dropped, and the wind picked up considerably. I could hear it howling all night and creaking the window and walls. As a result, when the alarm went off, I decided I would not walk in that weather - I would for the girls, but not me. I lazed in bed for quite a while before I got up!

The final day of meetings is over, and all went well. I now have two days of events at Club Tissus in St. Hubert. I got a huge bag of samples to show, and my presentations are prepped (OK -- so there's still that one that is not entirely to my liking!), and I'm ready to go. Sadly, I don't think I have room to buy anything! Although I might squeeze something into my backpack. 

Yesterday morning when I went out for my walk, the temperature was much nicer than the day before, which was good. Sorry to chat about the Adventure Labs, but otherwise, I wouldn't have much to tell you. The people who created them here are tricky, and each answer became a puzzle. This area has loads of history, with many buildings built in the 1800s, and one was built in 1799. 

I arrive at the first spot with a signboard explaining the building. Usually, the answer to the question is directly on the board, but not in this case. So I crossed the street to look at another sign board, but nope -- no answer there. Hmm -- am I going to have to abandon this one on the first question? Then I went back across the street and looked at the sign again and the building. OH --- there's the answer on the sign on the building! I don't have my glasses since I lost them, but I could still read the information. I answered the question, and I was off to the second one. 

At some point, I arrived at this house, which was built in 1799. 

A beautiful example of a stone building from 1799

A cute little house with very thick walls, I suspect. That's one of the reasons I love Quebec, as the history here is amazing. OK -- I know there is lots of history across the rest of Canada, but I love Quebec's history and architecture, which is pretty much unique to this province. 

Again, the answer wasn't on the sign board, but I figured out the solution after a quick circling of the house and using my calculator on my phone. In another spot, the answer was on a plaque outside a cathedral, but you had to find the plaque. 

But the real mystery was at this statue. It's a war memorial to those who died in the first and second world wars. Who made the sculpture? Oh gosh -- this was NOWHERE to be found at the site. 

A war memorial

So I had to Google that one and found it. It's amazing how you can find specific things on Google. That completed this one Adventure Lab. The next Adventure Lab was too long for me to do. I would have had to walk MILES, and well, I wasn't going to do that, and I didn't have time. Remember that all of the questions and answers are in French. But I've got the written accent thing down, no problem!

Then once we finished the meeting and I had loads of time and was short on steps for the day, I decided to head in another direction and look at two more Adventure Labs. 

It was a LONG walk to the park where the next two were located. But the sidewalks were clear, the temperature was nice, and I had nothing else to do. 

This next one was even trickier as it wanted you to use the tools on your cell phone to get the answers. ACK!!! I had to decipher a code, use the camera to scan a QR code, use the selfie camera to get a picture so I could then answer the question, use the compass (I guessed at that one since there were only three choices), and the last one I was supposed to measure a tree and figure out how old it was using my calculator. I confess I randomly guessed that one since I could not find the tree in question. 

There was a beautiful sculpture in this area, and the park is quite large, with loads of people there with their kids or walking, even with snow-covered paths. 

A sculpture in the park

So let's check out the second adventure in the park. I arrived at the first stop, only to find the sign was gone. Well, the sign was there, but it was completely blank. There is a lot of white-tailed deer in this area, so tame they didn't budge when I walked past. 

White-tailed deer

The question was - what are they commonly known as in Quebec? Oh boy --- that could be anything. I tried a few Google searches, but nothing came up, and it was getting late, so I decided to abandon that one. 

While the park was riddled with paths, most were unclear, so we were walking on granular snow, which was "fun" to walk on. 

Granular snow

Let's say that my shoes  - at least one of them got a bit muddier, but at least my feet were dry. I stopped at the grocery store to get some lip balm, which I always forget when traveling, and I need to leave one in my backpack! 

I love this little residential area. When I first saw the houses, it made me think of the Painted Ladies in San Francisco. 

Square San Francisco

And sure enough, the area is called Square San Francisco. 

I love walking when I'm traveling, as you never know what you'll find, and seeing interesting little spots like this always makes me smile! 

I need 150 points before Monday, so I should be able to get some more at the airport tomorrow, and the rest will have to happen on the weekend. But I have a hectic weekend, but I have to make it happen. 

It was almost 7 when I arrived back at the hotel, so I had a late dinner and went to bed! How many steps did I take? It was loads -- I clocked in at 25,000 steps for the day and am back on track with my walking goals. The fact that I'm not going out this morning will put me back again, but hopefully, this afternoon, it'll have warmed up, and I can go out and get my walk in. Yep --- it'll be significantly warmer this afternoon! 

Another day of QUILTsocial to check out. I had so much fun with the journal cover and all the embellishments. If you make one, be sure to share!!!

Have a super day!


Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Geocaching in the mud!

It was Day Two in Monreal, and all went well yesterday. My French must be used more, especially in the sewing environment, to become proficient with all those terms, and I MUST make more effort to make that happen. 

Someone posted this on Facebook and forwarded it to me, and I thought it was hilarious. 

I know that I say this all the time, and I don't like that I say it. I'd like to be busy all the time, but NOT stupid busy. Now, how the heck am I going to do that? Can I be better prepared? Try to space out things that get booked? Cut out some things? Hmmm -- I'll have to contemplate that on my walk this morning. 

OK -- so the walk yesterday was interesting. Since I need to get some geocaching points before Monday, I decided to get myself in gear and incorporate some caching into the walks while I'm here. 

I found a couple of Adventure Labs (part of Geocaching) in a cemetery near the hotel, so that sounds like a perfect place to go. Near for me is a KM away, so that's very close. Let's just say that the running shoes are now christened! You guessed it -- a muddy cemetery -- new shoes -- still not completely melted. I did not bad considering the circumstances, as only one shoe got muddy! And I have to say that it was at the LAST question that it happened! 

The new shoes got christened in the mud

But this cemetery was a bit weird. I also found a great bicycle path that runs for quite a distance, so that was cool, and no need to walk on the sidewalks. 

The bike path

I arrived at the cemetery from the back (I didn't know that), so I was trying to find the gate. There was no gate along the side I walked, so I returned to the bike path. 

I had to walk along that cemetery's fenced perimeter, only to find the entire front open! Now, why is that? Then I had to walk back to the very far corner to get the answer to the first question. 

The entire front of the cemetery is open

So with Adventure Labs, you must find a particular spot and answer a question. Since I was in a cemetery, all the answers had something to do with a gravestone. Let's not forget that all the descriptions, questions, and answers are in French. 

There were two adventures in this particular cemetery, so that was good, and twice I stopped at this grave. That is THE Jean Beliveau from the Montreal Canadiens. 

Grave of Jean Beliveau

So I'm doing well at deciphering the questions and finding the answers. However, I came to one headstone that almost did me in. The answer was easy to spot; it was etoiles. Etoiles has an accent on the e (I don't think I can achieve that on my laptop keyboard as I do not have a numeric keypad). Let's say the answer NEEDED that accent, or I couldn't go to the next step. 

How does one do that on the phone? I tried changing the phone to French. Nope, that didn't help. Can I switch the keyboard to French? That didn't help, either. But after about 15 minutes, I finally found out that by holding down the KEY (in this instance, the letter E), I get all kinds of options for accents. Who knew???? 

I typed in etoiles with the accent, and away I went. I managed to get both of the Adventure Labs complete and find one more regular cache before it was time to head back to the hotel for breakfast. 

Yep -- I"m behind on my walking again, but the others are leaving later today, and I'll be on my own for the next couple of days, so I hope to make up some time in the afternoon. 

If you have a good memory, you'll remember the plane in the hotel's atrium. OK -- so I didn't remember the plane until I got here! 

A plane from WWI in the atrium

I took a quick walk before dinner last night, and here's a closer view of the Olympic Stadium across the river on the main island. I'm on the South Shore. 

The Olympic Stadium

I still have some work to do on one of my presentations, but I'll attempt to finish that off tonight. Then everything is ready to go. 

And when I get back home, I have ONE more week of craziness, and then it's over. Well, I"m still busy, but the traveling will stop for a bit, so that's good. I'll be home for THREE weeks -- I can hardly wait. 

Here's the link to QUILTsocial for the next step in the collage journal cover. I hope you're all following along, as there are so many fun techniques you can try, and it's a great way to use up odds and ends around your house. 

And on that note, I'm out of here to get that walk-in and see what adventures I'll have today!!

Have a super day!!


Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Travel to Montreal

 Yesterday was a travel day, as I'm now in Montreal. I worked on my presentations in the morning, finished packing, and was off. The girls weren't too happy, but they currently have a dog sitter, so they will have many privileges they wouldn't usually have. They won't miss either of us a bit! Lexi was quite comfortable lying on the couch! 

It was not a good day as I lost my glasses! UGH, and I have no one to blame but myself. I barely wear those glasses, so I should have safely tucked them in my bag. But no, I insisted on putting them on my face, and when I got to the airport and went to print my bag tag, I put them on my head. They are stretched and loose, so this was going to end badly. I got my stuff printed and took the bag to the bag drop, and I bet while heaving the suitcase onto the belt, I didn't even notice that they fell off. 

The next time I thought of my glasses was on the plane; they were long gone by then. I put in a claim, but the chance of finding them INTACT will be a miracle. They really did need to be replaced as the lenses were scratched from when I face-planted in the middle of the street with the girls about 4 years ago. 

Thankfully, I don't need them, but I am supposed to wear them while driving; however, I can get by without them, and I have my prescription sunglasses. So I'll cope! But darn it all -- I hate when I do stupid stuff like that! 

So I will have to get a new pair when I get home. Thankfully, the craziness will slow down, so I'll have some time. 

They have a new baggage sizer at the airport, and I was asked to put my bag on it when I walked past. I can't believe they asked me to check my bag since it's SMALL. What about those larger bags? Oh -- those people just walk right on through. And can you believe that when I was about to board the plane, they asked me AGAIN to put it in the metal sizer? I get it, but why are they focusing on my SMALL bag when I saw much larger suitcases on the plane, and the width of mine just fits in that sizer thing. Do I look like an easy target if my bag wouldn't fit? Meaning I wouldn't put up a fuss to check my bag.

Anyway -- the plane wasn't full, and I had no one beside me, so that was good. Lots of room to search for those darn glasses when I remembered them. If only I had put them in my pocket. No room for regrets -- just move on. 

You have to love the forecast which I took from the plane. DREARY!!! That sounds so positive!

Dreary forecast

And there's a view of the Olympic Stadium in Montreal. I'm surprised that thing is still standing! I forget the year the Olympics were in Montreal - oh - that would be 1976. 

Olympic Stadium from the plane

I have a corner room at the hotel with a great view of the city (I think). It's dark, so I'll check it out later. 

We set everything up last night and are ready to go this morning. But I'm going for a walk shortly. It's almost the end of that geocaching event -- 5 days left, and I still need a lot of points. I was going to just let it go, but after looking at the app last night, I discovered TWO Adventure Labs at the airport, which are easy to get 100 points. And there are two more Adventure Labs close by in a cemetery. Guess where I'm headed this morning? 

I also wore my new shoes. OK -- so they look huge, but they are pretty comfy. I swear I was walking on those cushioned floors and even checked to see if the floor was cushioned. I think I'm going to like them. Let's see how well they wear! 

And that's a wrap for today. 

Oh -- remember to check out QUILTsocial. I'm working with the Husqvarna Viking DESIGNER EPIC 2 and using all kinds of fabulous embellishments to make a collage journal cover! It's a great way to learn a lot of excellent techniques. Be sure to check it out. 

Have a super day!!!!


Monday, March 27, 2023

My world has gone to the dogs!

It's Monday! One last week of this insane month! Well, it's one more week this month, and then the first week of next month will be crazy as well, and THEN I'm home for a while. It's all fun and games! One of the can't move deadlines is done! Thank goodness for that, as it allowed me to focus on other things yesterday - like the four presentations that need to be assembled (good progress happened), and I had to pack my sample suitcase, which is also done. 

Despite all that, yesterday was about the dogs and me! The first weird thing that happened was this. Miss Lexi came into the office, which is a rare occurrence, but she's becoming much braver, as she doesn't like rooms with doors. Then the next thing I knew, she was in this little closed area which is HUGE for her. This is something she would NEVER have done in the past. I'm unsure why she was there, but she stayed there while I wrote the blog. 

Lexi, the brave!

Then it was Murphy's turn to do something unusual. She and I went for a walk, and despite my prediction about the wind and leaves, she was pretty good. Until she sniffed a broken bottle and cut her nose! The look she gave me when that happened was hilarious, and I wish I could have got it on the camera. She basically said, "WTF? That hurt, and now my nose is bleeding."

Oh gosh -- we were near the beginning of our walk, and blood was dripping off her nose. I stopped several times to see how bad it was, but it didn't seem to bother her much. She looked a mess, although it didn't appear in the pictures. 

MOM -- I've got a nosebleed!

And then she got blood on her paw. But the bleeding seemed to slow down quickly, and she was OK by the time I got home. The bleeding stopped, and all the blood was gone from her fur. What a trooper!

MOM -- I'm wounded!

We had two great Zoom sessions in the morning, and these groups are so creative - I love doing the show and tell! The homework follow-up is done; however, I still have to prepare the follow-up from Saturday and send it out.

It was Virtual Retreat yesterday, with lots of great conversations, although I didn't participate as much as usual because I had work to do. But at one point, I carried my laptop around the house with my earbuds as I collected samples. 


Then this happened. Sorry about the long photos - my phone accidentally changed to a silly ratio. YES -- it was GAZEBO time! I couldn't help myself -- it was a glorious day, and I was out there several times. The girls were happy that Mom was outside, and of course, that involved some of their antics. 

Gazebo time!

Seriously? What is with this? 

MOM, I can't find my bear!

And I swear that Muprhy walks or sits as close to the pond edge as she possibly can - it's like she tempting fate that she'll "accidentally" fall in. 

And then Lexi decided she MUST go under the deck, despite all the mud.

Just checking for rabbits!

There was a gentle breeze, and the wind chimes were tinkling. This is why I paid a lot of money to have the roof repaired, and the gazebo will be repainted later this year. 

The wind chimes

This is my happy place; I could lie out there all day. In case you want to see the new roof from the inside -- here it is. 

The new roof from the inside

The pond is super full right now because of all the rain. 

The pond is full to overflowing

But the fish were out sunning themselves and having a grand time. I'm so glad we don't have to fuss with them. They live there all winter, dig themselves amongst the lilies, and are happy. I don't even feed them any longer. 

The fish in the weeds

Yes, and that Murphy -- if she wasn't trying to dunk her bear in the pond, she was carrying around big sticks. Or trying to get Lexi to chase her. She would taunt Lexi, then run like mad around the yard's perimeter. Lexi just watched from the gazebo, so Murphy would stop, tease her again, and then take off like a crazy dog. Lexi just watched the antics! That's a Husky for you -- if they don't have to expend their energy, they won't!

MOM -- I got a big stick!

Anyway -- it was a glorious day out there, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Then it was time to get back in the house and get to work. 

And Lexi? Well, what can I say about her? She likes to savor her food; if she could, we'd find stored bits of food everywhere. That isn't possible with Murphy, who thinks that ANYTHING outside Lexi's dish is hers. And then Lexi tried to hide kibble in the dog bed, but she's trying to cover it with the blanket in the dog bed, but she STANDS on the blanket, so it won't move. Oh, Lexi!!

Mom -- I'm trying to hide food

Well, that's it for today. I'm off to spin class this morning and back home to pack my clothes and office bag. I'll hang around the Monday group for a bit, but I need to work on those presentations. 

Have a super day, and enjoy the weather if it's nice where you are. Maybe you all need a gazebo? I'm so glad this one was here when we moved - I'm not sure I would have thought to buy one!


Sunday, March 26, 2023

How tidy is too tidy?

Leaps and bounds of progress are being made. Well, not exactly, but I'm closer to getting everything done. I have a couple of hours of editing, and one of the critical deadlines will be done! I worked on the second critical deadline project and might get more done today. Then it'll get set aside until next weekend when it becomes my only priority! 

The Zoom calls went off without a hitch yesterday. And the two presentations for this morning are ready to go! Being organized and having a system works amazingly to making this all happen. 

The one thing in the back of my mind is that one presentation I need for later this week. I'll be taking pictures and doing some computer work today. I know it's a Virtual Retreat, but I can't be there the entire time. I'll pop in every hour for about 15 minutes just to take a break from the computer. 

I have a suitcase of samples that needs to be packed, so it will be a busy day. 

So what is with this weather? It was a crazy day yesterday. I looked out the window and saw the rain and looked at the girls, and they said, "Don't be a sissy - we WANT to go for a walk!" So I got bundled up and wore my rain boots. I didn't take an umbrella, as it can be a hassle when walking the dogs, especially Murphy. Let's just say the umbrella wouldn't have helped much. 

I was soaked when I got back from Murphy's walk. At least my pants were, and I could have wrung water out of them. So much water was in the fabric that it was dripping into my rain boots! 

Soaked right through

I took Lexi for a walk, although a wee bit shorter, as we ran out of time. She didn't notice. By this time, with the wind and the temperature hovering above zero, I was starting to get a little bit cold. Once I returned to the house, I changed into my PJs and confess that I stayed in them all day - even on the Zoom call! 

I glanced out once or twice during the day, and it was still raining hard, and well, I didn't need to go for a walk that badly! Yes -- I missed my walking goal yesterday, and I'm OK with that! 

OK -- I'll also confess that I have a morbid thing with houses under repair in the neighborhood. This house was damaged by fire a while ago, and what's with the repair thing? They've been working on the roof for weeks. And it's now left in this state. Seriously? Why can't they finish the peaks? While the windows in the front of the house are somewhat boarded up, there are no windows in the back. The entire place must be a sodden mess. 

A house under repair

I get that they build houses in all kinds of weather, but I don't think I'd want to live in a house if they couldn't do the repairs efficiently. What about all that moisture in the house? Mold? Nope --- just sell it and move on! Or get the repair people to move faster! No one is living there at the moment -- obviously!

When I got back with Lexi, they were wet and HAPPY. It took Murphy a long time to dry out, while Lexi just went and sat on her mat and was OK with life. 

Resting from the walk!

Murphy likes her new toy, as she had a wrestling match with it during the afternoon. 

MOM -- this new toy is fun!

MOM -- look at me pull the toy

MOM -- there's something in there!

MOM -- what's this? A squishy bit?

There was no damage to the toy yet, but she was determined to get the nose off the little creature living in the mushroom! Oh, Murphy -- such a silly girl. Right now, she's outside. Doing what? No idea, but she's happy as a clam in the mud.

MOM -- there's a knob thing I need to chew off

Article in the newspaper

So you are all probably familiar with Marie Kondo and her decluttering methods. She wrote books, had a television program, did the tour,s and basically lived as a minimalist; she made a lot of money and made a lot of people very anxious that they needed to live like her. Guess what? She had no children. The ball has dropped since she now has children - three of them. I bet her kids (and her own) T-shirts are no longer folded and all pointing upright so you can see them. She also grew up in a culture where people lived in tiny spaces and were unfamiliar with North America's "abundant" lifestyle. 

The author of the article was a neat freak until he had kids. 

I do not know why we are so ready to compare ourselves to someone with a different lifestyle than us. Why? My sense of neatness and orderliness is MINE, and while I can offer tips, I can't make you change your habits. I read one of Marie's books, looked at her suggestions, and had a good laugh! No way that's happening at my house! I'm lucky if I can get the clothes back in the drawer. Never mind folding them and putting them in order. That is not going to happen in my lifetime! 

Which is another reason why less is more. The less you have, the less you have to manage, or the neater it looks if the clothes don't make the drawer! My sewing room is another matter, and I like neat and orderly (more or less) as it helps me to find things. 

I think we could all do ourselves a HUGE favor and STOP comparing ourselves to anyone else. And STOP looking at all those staged photos on Facebook and Instagram. Most of those photos are either "stupid" or staged, neither of which interests me. And since there's more and more of that on both platforms, I don't spend much time on either, as I don't want to waste my time. 

So while our houses should be somewhat clean and neat, you only have your standards to live by. What works for me won't work for everyone. Although I'm still determined to get rid of most things in our house by the time we need to downsize. And it will happen -- I've made HUGE leaps and bounds in progress, but just not enough time to get it all done. It's an evolving thing. I don't want my life to be saddled with JUNK! 

I did NOT make it to the Etobicoke Quilt Show as I had work to do, which I did. So while I'm sad I missed the show, I'm happy I got the work done. 

Remember, today is the Virtual Retreat! I'll be in and out as I take breaks during the day. 

Virtual Retreat  - Sunday, March 26   -- Starts at NOON. 

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 861 1959 8156
Passcode: 053861

Well, it's time to brave that wind this morning. At least it's not raining, so I'll stay dry. Let's pray there are no loose leaves around - one of Murphy's favorite things is chasing leaves in the wind. Which is fine, except when she's on the end of a leash! 

Have a super day!!!!


Saturday, March 25, 2023

One day at a time

Oh boy   -- as much as I try to be accurate, I goofed on those dates of the Virtual Retreat. It's all fixed -- thanks, Mary. And Elle --- just say NO!! I refuse to believe I will get blisters - I'm in denial. However, truth be told, a lot of walking will happen with the heat, and I'm sure I'll get blisters. But they WILL be manageable. As much as I'm embarrassed to say this -- those shoes were too small for my feet. 

Another silly day but I accomplished loads. The four presentations for next week are in good shape. It's better to start with MANY slides and then cull it down. So two need to be culled; I'm waiting on the translation for one, and most of that will be live, and the last one? Well, I still have a lot of work to do on that one. That's a job for tomorrow -- yes -- even though it's Virtual Retreat, I'll be running around the house taking photos or gathering samples!

One of the critical deadlines should be done by tomorrow. Again, I will have to work on that during the Virtual Retreat. It can't be helped -- it's just the nature of the schedule. The following two weeks are busy, and then NOTHING! Could they spread this stuff out? Anyway -- it'll all get done. 

I have two presentations this morning; one is done, and the other is not! But it will be. I would LOVE to do some fun sewing just for me, but that won't happen for a while because once these next two weeks are over, I need to get to the long arm!

But let's not think about that -- let's just get through today and tomorrow and one day at a time. 

Here's another sign of spring! Pussy willows! I found these on a tree in my neighbor's driveway. Let's not go there, but they have this very unruly tree, and as the branches COVER the driveway, they cut the branches off and leave them in the driveway. They live two doors from the entrance to the forest -- I have zero problems with them dragging them to the forest. But everyone is different! 

Pussy willows

So Murphy is naughty! There's no other way to say it. I bought her a new toy when I got her some dog food, and I decided to give it to her yesterday. She had a total lack of interest in the toy and decided she wanted to go out. I opened the door, and she grabbed that toy and was outside like a shot! MURPHY -- that's an INDOOR toy!!

MOM - You can't catch me!

Then moments later, I saw the toy floating in the pond. NO -  Murphy --- that isn't supposed to happen!! So I had to get the net out of the shed and fish the toy out of the pond. This was done intentionally --- these are NOT accidents. 

MOM -- the toy fell in the pond! 

And then she looks sad because the toy is gone. Oh, Muprhy! 

MOM -- where did the toy go? 

I needed some orange yarn yesterday. I know -- shocking that I don't have any in the house, so I walked to the mall and then the dollar store. Can you believe that no one has orange yarn? There was this crazy stuff, but that wasn't what I wanted. If only I had realized two days ago that I needed orange yarn, I was right by Michael's. Oh well -- I made do with what I had. Alright -- if your eagle eye spotted that orange on the middle shelf, I purchased that, but it wasn't the type I needed, so I ended up not using it. 

NO orange yarn

But at the dollar store, I spotted this landscape fabric. Do you know how hard I looked for this stuff several years ago? I was in the US and searched every hardware store, and I found nothing. Then I found a long roll at Rona, near my house. I still have loads, so I didn't buy any, but you can embroider on this stuff and make plant pots! There are several types of landscape fabric and I wanted a very dense fibrous kind. 

Landscape fabric

They had two widths!!!

Landscape fabric

OK -- so that Murphy is sneaky. I was working on my project at the sewing machine, and I turned around, and there she was, WATCHING me. Good grief Murphy --- I didn't even know she was there. It was time for dinner, and she was waiting! 

MOM -- kind of hungry here! 

I will wear my Hoka running shoes around the house for a day or two before I go outside with them. I'm sure all will be fine, but better to be sure before they are unreturnable. This shoe brand has a LOT of cushioning (at least at the price point I bought), and they are WIDE in the front. Not just the toe box but the sole. The salesperson said lots of people won't buy them because they look like shoes for giants! 

The old and the new

And black was better than the pretty pastel-colored ones! DH said they look geeky. And the first thing out of his mouth when I told him the price was, "how much per KM do you get?" If they are going to make geeky-looking shoes, at least they could make them bright? I'll have to write them a letter. But they are practically weightless! 

My new running shoes

They feel great, so I'll start wearing them on Monday when I'm back on a plane. 

OH -- I forgot to mention that I've been back and forth with the company about my front door latch, and they have agreed to send me a new part. Yeah! It's hilarious that the company is near me, but they won't ship the part until April 21. I could walk there and get it much quicker! The door works for now - and they are replacing it for free. It does say on the packaging - LIFETIME WARRANTY, so I expect they will replace it for free. 

We must keep track of items we buy with lifetime guarantees and follow up if they need replacing. Check the packaging on those OLFA cutters. I've had TWO replaced because I wore them out! That's why I will always buy that brand; they are the most comfortable to cut with. It's better to buy quality than the cheap stuff. 

I'm off to finish that last presentation and walk the girls before the calls open at 9:00 AM. I will NOT be getting to the Etobicoke Quilt Show. Thankfully I saw some photos yesterday. I would love to go, but it's unreasonable to go and then be up half the night to complete my deadline project. 

However, today is the last day for that show, so be sure to get out and see what they have. 

And tonight, while we have this wicked rain storm, you can be snug in your house for the Virtual Retreat TONIGHT. 

Virtual Retreat - Saturday, March 25 - starts at 6 PM

Join Zoom Meeting Meeting ID: 892 5423 3911 Passcode: 982797

Virtual Retreat -Sunday, March 26 - starts at NOON

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 861 1959 8156
Passcode: 053861

Have a super day!!