Friday, August 26, 2011

Sewing, Swimming, and School

We're winding up our summer this week. 

I meet this time of year always with a bi-polar personality. 

Half of me is eager to get back into a more structured day. Something about the urgency & business of the school year helps me to be more organized, more methodical & thereby more productive. 

But the other half of me resists this structure & wants to further enjoy these free-floating days.

And this year is even "more" as I send my younger daughter, now the youngest here, off to public high school on Monday. After being so wrapped up in my kids' schedules & homeschooling them, I'll find myself with time on my hands.

How many days & hours did I fantasize about "me time" back when they were all younger? And now the prospect of me time sounds, well... kinda lonely. But I'm very good at keeping busy! I have three client quilts to work on this upcoming week, amongst other various projects lined up that have been in my mind but on the back burner until I had more time. 

Then there are personal, career-oriented goals I haven't seriously thought about in years. 
And now I am.

In between school shopping & trying to get in last-summer swims, I've gotten a little sewing done as well.

Made a couple checkbook covers:

This sunflower checkbook cover matches the sunflower purse I just made!

And later I wanted to play with a new eyelet punch tool, so I made this very simple bookmark:

Has anybody used one of these? I ask because the front of the eyelet retained it's red color, but you can see the back of this eyelet rubbed off in the stamping process & has been left silver instead. I'm not sure if I squished it like a beast & thereby rubbed off the color in my quest to MAKE IT STAY?? Or if I have cheap eyelets? Or if this is just the way it is???

It's Friday. We're planning to take a bike ride & enjoy this weather today. 

Saturday through Sunday we'll have hurricane Irene come past & so we'll start honing in on the weather report to see how bad our chances are of getting more of the heavy rain which would cause the Susquehanna River to flood our town... my home. 

And Monday my daughter will start high school... on her 15th birthday. She's excited to see what high school is like but wishes she were able to sleep in on her birthday! 

Friday, August 19, 2011

I'm a Bag Lady

I have a small addiction to bags- pocketbooks, totes, coin purses, hobo bags, etc....

I'll admit to not being too picky. Yes, I own a couple small Coach bags, but I'm not opposed to grabbing something that catches my eye at a cheaper, box store too.

My latest thing is having learned how to make a lined zipper purse. 

The butterfly purse ended up being an odd shape. I like it's width but it looks a little short/squat: 

And I didn't properly catch the sparklies in the fabric either. Morgan deemed it "dorky" & asked me not to take it out shopping at the mall!! hahahaha

I made some adjustments & tried again with this beautiful sunflower fabric. I REALLY like the way this one turned out!
Made it taller & not quite so wide, but I did keep the bottom width. 

I customize the pockets for what I want to be held within: checkbooks, chapstick (a good friend gave me a terrific hint to make this pocket short, too, so that it doesn't get "lost" too far down), hand sanitizer, a pen, etc.

Next, I want to make a zippered totebag. With the school schedule starting & all the running around that entails, I'll be spending a fair amount of time in the car just waiting for my daughter. 

And I'm a huge fidgeter. I have to have something to do or read or somewhere to write while confined in the car, and so I always keep a bag packed & ready to go. 

But I guess I also do a bit of careening about in my car, as so often my bags are flopping here & there with the contents spilling out. Thus, the zippered totebag idea... 

Friday, August 12, 2011

Whippet Goes Down

Introducing our other dog... Dino the Whippet.

So far, you've mostly heard about the Spastic Lab, but this week's Doggie Antics showcase Dino.

Somehow while out in the backyard by himself with no other dogs around & no way to make contact with a moving vehicle, he managed to dislocate his hip & get some nasty lacerations. 

In an effort to allow the over-stretched ligaments, etc., to heal, Dino has his leg bandaged in place  & is reduced to hopping on three legs. 

He spent the night at the animal hospital & came home a tad wobbly, so we were holding the leash in one hand & his tail in the other to lend stability. 

(my daughter, Maegan, helping Dino get up)
This has consumed my week for the most part... trying to keep him calm, help him get up, help him lie down, hand feedings, shoving pills down, and running through the yard Quasimodo-style holding Dino's leash in one hand & his tail straight up in the air with the other one, trying desperately to keep up with him while simultaneously getting whipping in the face with various things in the yard (our "gardens" roughly resemble a jungle presently.) 

Hope y'all have a terrific weekend!

Friday, August 05, 2011

Hershey Quilt Show Loot

I went to the Hershey Quilt Show with a couple of friends this past Sunday, and came home with some fantastic loot!

This is an over-view picture. The pictures below separate it all into groups...

WOOL - Since I did my snowman candle mat, I'm hooked!! It's fantastic to stitch on & I think it looks fabulous to boot! I haven't tried felting it yet, but that's up there on my "things-to-try-soon" list!

NOTIONS: a couple lighted crocheted hooks, a chalk liner, rubber thimble, Marvy erasable fabric marker, a few HQ reusable bobbins, and that round thing is a chalk eraser and/or fuzzy remover.

I didn't buy much fabric. Unless I'm looking for something specialized, most likely something novelty, I resist buying fabric at the shows because it's darn expensive. So I look for smaller cuts of novelty for the most part.

FAT QUARTERS: pickles, "manly", lime green, orange w/spider webs, "I love soccer", two purple bats, and a couple candy corns.

Had to show a close-up of the "manly" -- They're more difficult to find. I cannot fathom what I'd make with it, but well, you know, I still NEEDED it.

FREEBIES: Oh yeah, you read that right!!! I got all these various sized cuts below FOR FREE!! I guess the folks at Epicurean Crafts thought I'd spent enough at their booth that I'd earned some free loot!! I'm all for that :) 
(the stuff I bought from them are the patterns at the end for stitchery)

THREAD: Cones for the HQ16

ORNAMENTS: Halloween & Christmas patterns for felted wool

SEWING: a Bible cover & a 12"X 12" mini quilt for summertime

STITCHERY: Halloween, Autumn, runner, and Easter wall-hanging, and a book of "edgings"

Are you all familiar with "stitchery"? I've come to love it! It's simpler than full-out embroidery & works beautifully in my very old home. I was thrilled to see so much of it at the show this year. Last year this wasn't the case & choices were more limited.

That's the end of my loot-sharing. The pile seems a tad small to me when I consider the total price tag, but alas, I know I haven't picked the cheapest hobby. 

AND I don't have the most restraint when I find myself in a room filled with sewing/quilting stuff... or books for that matter... or in bakeries ... or in any other restaurant... or in an education store... office supplies stores...

Perhaps I need to work on self-restraint??