Saturday, September 22, 2007

Looking around

Today we drove around looking at everything. We drove to Tampa and went to a quilt shop that advertises to be the largest quilt shop in Florida. It was large! Have you ever been to a shop that was so large you got overwhelmed? I was there today! The way I shop at a new store is to quickly walk around the whole store and get an overview of the offerings. Then go back to the areas of interest. Well it took me about 25 minutes to quickly scan the place! Then I tried to go back to the places I was interested in, but couldn't remember where they were. LOL
I did buy something, but only a pattern. I was just overloaded.

After leaving the quilt shop we drove and drove and drove until I was sure we were close to home, but no we were just driving the coast road where all the tourist go to spend the summer and winter. I have never seen so many hotels and condos in my life! They were so close together you couldn't even see the water.

For dinner we went to a place that advertises they make Texas Bar-B-Que, well I am here to tell you I am from Texas and that was not Bar-B-Q! That was rotiserie chicken, they didn't even put sauce on it. It just goes to show everyone has an idea of what BBQ is.

I did take some pictures of some of the birds we have seen. There are so many different kinds that I have never seen before.

We saw some Spoonbills but didn't have out camera with us. They sure were pretty.
Tomorrow we drive back home. I sure will be glad to see the kids again. I am not sure I could move without them if Ray got the job. I will just let God deal with that!

Friday, September 21, 2007


We arrived late last night after getting started much later than we expected. We drove through the subtropical depression that has been all the talk on the news for the past three days. The rain and wind at times was really bad, but we managed.

I decided last I would take care of everything before going to bed so i could sleep late if I wanted. So at midnight I was ironing shirts and pants for the man and getting all of his stuff ready in the bathroom so he wouldn't slam bam around looking for everything. I send Ray on to bed so he can get to sleep as he was really tired after working 7 hours at work and then driving for 10 hours all evening. He is snoring before I can get the iron hot!

Wouldn't you know I slept until the late hour of 7am! Geesh! A whole 30 minutes later than I sleep at home. HUMPH...I wanted to sleep late! Like I used to BK-before kids!

Good news is this place is loaded with quilt shops! I found two within 10 minutes of the hotel! WOO HOO! And I have a list of about 8 more to find this afternoon and tomorow.

(This is from our room, see the curtain reflection?)

Ray's interview went well. He was told it was between him and one other person. I guess that is good because I think nine people applied.

We have been driving around looking at the lay of the land. I have only ever been to Disney World years ago, but I didn't remember much of what it looks like. It probably had something to do with having 3 kids under 10 in the back seat! LOL

It is very flat here, but there are more trees than I thought. I guess in my mind it would be nothing but sand, shells and palm trees. :^)

The sky is beautiful! Bright blue with lots of white puffy clouds.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Checking out the place

I'm sorry for being AWOL, just busy preparing for this weekend. Ray and I are headed to Florida for a couple of days. He is going to a job interview while I check out if the Tampa FL area is a place we would like to live. After 25 years of service he was asked if he would apply for a position that was coming available. He is very happy in his current position, and really likes the people he works with, but this would be a really nice promotion.
I have tried very hard to not put the cart before the horse, but it so hard to not think about all aspects of this, even when he hasn't even interviewed, much less been offered the job. We have been surfing the web about housing and cost of living and local quilt shops. So while Ray is interviewing for a job, I will be interviewing quilt shops. :^)


Saturday, September 15, 2007

Fabric, patterns and magazines

I have spend the last couple of days working at the quilt shop. It started out as an average day and we, the owner and I, were ordering new fabric and books. The owner looked around afterwards and said, I think I am gonna move this fabric from over here to over there so we can get it a bit more organized. I say, Ok. DUMB ANSWER!

Did you know if you move one bolt of fabric you will end up moving all the bolts or fabric? Did you know if you move one fabric cabinet you will move many many more fabric cabinets? Did you know if you take one sample off the wall you will eventually move EVERY sample in the shop? Believe me when I tell you this is true.

What started out as a 15 minute idea of moving a few bolts ended up in 2 full days of moving, sweeping, dusting, sweating, get the picture. I do have to say that the shop looks great now. It looked good before, but changing it up seemed to make it look so much better. I guess it was like spring cleaning in late summer.

After we finished sprucing up the place we received an order that really excited me. We decided we wanted to prepare this for the next Block of the Month. It is by American Jane called Playtime.

Isn't it great? I Love it!

I am really picky. There aren't very many patterns that excite me, but this one has be "jazzed" ( as my friend Linda says ).

The next thing that came out of the box was this pattern also by American Jane. It is called Merry-go-round. I know it is not a new pattern, but I liked the fabrics and the look.
I really like the look that my Granny could have made this quilt.
I am also thinking this pattern would look great in my hand dyed fabrics. I am going to work on a few blocks and see how it looks.
There has been much discussion lately, not just on the Internet, about the growing disappointment in quilt magazines. I hear not only from online groups I am in, but also from local guild members that they are dropping magazine subscriptions. What is your opinion? Do you have subscriptions to magazines? Which ones? Are you pleased? Will you renew?
I am curious.
Let me hear from you,

Thursday, September 13, 2007


Tonight was suppose to be Family night. Ever since my two older children moved away from home I have missed them terribly and feel like I don't get to see them much. I didn't want to seem like an overbearing mom so I just stayed quiet when I didn't hear from them for sometimes a month or more at a time. I would tell myself, they are young and busy and are trying to have their own life. But I decided this was not good for our once very close family to not spend time together.
My oldest son is 24 and moved out about 18 months ago. Alan is such a sensitive soul. Alan will do most anything I ask him to do. He may not want to but will because he wants to make me happy. My daughter is 21 and left home when she was 18. Kari is very strong willed (read stubborn). Kari is opposite of me. I am not organized and can't even see what organized looks like, but Kari has a place for everything, and she is a worker. I used to call her my work horse. She could and would do any amount of heavy "man" labor just so she could say she did it. My youngest is 17 and a senior in high school. Joseph is the last one home. He is such a sweetheart and loved by everyone who meets him. From the time Joseph could walk he was his brother's shadow. He thought and still does to some extent that Alan hung the moon. He was the real reason I started Family night. Joseph is lonely for his brother. I remember the loneliness of being the last child at home when I was growing up, so i decided I would try to do something about it this time.

I started by saying tonight was suppose to be family night. I found out yesterday two of the family will be absent. Joseph plays in the band and will be at a football game and Kari has to work. So we three who are left will have to muddle through somehow. Last week we ate and played on the Wii. I think tonight we may just have to go out to eat.

I am sure today's blog entry is scatter brained. I have a lot on my mind, but can't say anything yet. So I am quite distracted. I hope I haven't rambled too much.


Sunday, September 9, 2007

I have been working on this for 2 weeks and finally got it to the ready to quilt stage. I forgot how much I don't love making mitered borders on black fabric. It is so hard to see! But they came out pretty good.
This is the same pattern we did at the retreat. But at the retreat it was done in silk ties. I knew I didn't want to do ties as they are so slickery. Cotton is my friend and it behaves so well. I have had the top made for over a week, but had to get my mind made up about the border. So today I just went upstairs and told myself I couldn't get up until it was finished. Sometimes I have to be stern with myself.
Time to go baste it!

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Color my world

Great balls of fire!

Color, it just excites me!

It is the coolest feeling to rinse the fabric and see what it looks like.

Sometimes the colors seem to glow.

Sometimes it reminds me of things in my childhood...this one makes me think of black cherry Kool Aid.

This looks like a watermelon flavored Jolly Rancher sucker.



Friday, September 7, 2007

It's the busy time again

Each year about this time I get super busy. October starts the crazy time for my business. I start having shows and will continue through Spring. I got a delivery of fabric yesterday so there will be strange noises around here for a while. My husband says I make lots of moans, groans and grunts as I lift, tear, spill, mix clean up, and tote tubs of fabric in dye solution. Then starts the rinsing which will leave my poor over worked washing machine begging for a break. I have a wonderful ironing station that lets me iron large pieces easily.

I know as soon as I put this in print I will not get it done, but this is the plan. I plan on spending the day and evening mixing dyes. I try to mix as much dye as I can in one or two sessions so I don't have to wear my mask everyday. I hate the mask, but I know it is necessary so I try to get it over with fast. Besides the fact the mask is uncomfortable, I can scare my dog when wearing it. Well it's a plan anyway.


Sunday, September 2, 2007

No energy to cook!

Do you have the same trouble I have? I spent a good part of the day planning menus for the next 2 weeks. Checking my fridge, freezer and pantry for items I have on hand. Looking through recipes for new ideas. I made out a shopping list and headed to the grocery store with husband in tow. I prefer to shop alone, but I really need help pushing the heavy buggy and loading the truck with the groceries. Plus when Ray is with me I tend to stay more focused and I get out of there with everything on my list. Anyway, I went and bought all I had on my list. Ray and I got it all in the truck and went home to spend the next 30 minutes putting it away. Now I am hungry and pooped! No energy to cook! LOL

I love to read Judy Laquidara's blog. She loves to cook and share her menus. I on the other hand only like to cook but I am not a great cook. Several times in my life I have been asked to not cook the same dish again. I would prefer to live the life where I had a live in cook, but alas I don't so I keep trying. I was a much better cook when all my children were young. We lived in a very small town with no restaurants. Seriously, we only had a McDonald's and a couple of locally owned diners. So I cooked every day and we ate out only occasionally since it was 2.5 hours to the nearest place with a restaurant. Then 9 years ago we moved here where there is a place to eat on every corner, well at least on every corner that there isn't a pharmacy or bank.

I have been getting a new sample made for my shows in October. I hope to have the border on it tomorrow so I can beg my friend to machine quilt it for me. Maybe I can finish it and take a picture.
This is a top I made for a guild workshop that I taught last year. Actually I made two, the one shown is out of my fabrics and then I made one out of scraps of commercial fabrics. This is a quilt out of an Evelyn Sloppy book. I have several of her books and have made several out of each book. Her instructions are very clear.
Well it is late and I must scoot.