Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Is your stash overwhelming to you? While blog hopping today I saw quite a few people who said their stashes were becoming or already was overwhelming and uncontrolled. One notable designer, Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville fame has a photo of what I am sure is just some of her stash on her blog today, I have loved Bonnie’s designs for years now and with her permission include several of her patterns as a part of my Scrappy Happy Quilt Retreats. It was fun for me to see her scrap bin…

So I trekked up the stairs (easier now thank goodness) and took a serious look at mine.
Yes, I have more than I can use in two lifetimes.
Yes I am not sewing near as much as I have in years past due to health issues.
Yes I will never use it all. Yes, I am giving it away…some of it.
Yes I might sell some of it on eBay, some of the “collectables” namely the very early Aunt Graces I treasure so much.
Yes I will be sending some of it to a friend who is making quilts for Children’s Hospital, and some more to another friend who is making QOV.
Yes I will be taking my scrap bin (or that might be bins?) to the October Retreat for the ladies to use as needed in their Scrappy Happy Quilts and if I am in the mood I might just make another Scrappy Happy Quilt myself… I have an idea and I KNOW I have the scraps!

But honestly, it’s not that bad. My stash is neat, somewhat controlled and usable for darn sure. Now if I could just get past all the things that are keeping me from getting to it.. these shakes, the sleepless nights followed by groggy grumpy not good sewing days… I will sew and I will sew soon!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Another give away….

As I said in a previous post, I’m going to clean out my sewing room. Let’s make that clean UP my sewing room, I know for a fact it will never ever until I’ve died and gone to quilters heaven be totally empty. Quilting is a part of my life so as long as I am alive I will have quilting stuff.

BUT I have too much, so I’m giving it away. Not totally, you should know that by now. But I will give away a box of fabrics to one lucky quilter at the end of July. What’s the catch… I just want a dollar. That’s all, just a dollar. A one dollar donation made on my Relay page and I will put your name in the draw for a lovely box of fabrics.

THIS IS NOT A RAFFLE… I can’t do raffles any more, against the rules, so it’s just a give away.

Look for the donate button on my Relay page, and donate $1. If you are feeling generous, you can still donate on my ACS page too.

I will put all the dollars and ACS donations into and let it pick a winner on July 31st.


I got another email this morning asking me when I would be teaching again. This group is in lower VA and is looking for someone to teach a workshop in the fall and maybe do a trunk show and lecture also. Sadly I had to say no because their date coincided with the October Retreat and I can’t miss that.

However, they got me thinking. I do miss teaching. I miss quilting, but I also miss sharing my passion with other people. I so enjoy watching someone create something they never imagined they could make themselves, and seeing the joy on someone’s face when they complete a project. I miss the company of other quilters and the fun they bring to life.

But am I ready to go back to teaching again? I had a few good days, followed by that day that never ended… four hours sleep in 48 hours is not enough for me and now I am catching up on everything it seems, sleep and life too. What would happen if one of those never ending days occurred when I was teaching…

I learned at the October Retreat last year that I am worthless when I’m not myself. (Long story short… I could not read my own pattern, one I had written myself and made four times and I didn’t understand my own directions) That was bad and I don’t want that ever to happen again. I’m pretty sure if I had a class yesterday it would have been a repeat of that nightmare.

But the medical people tell me that I will get used to this medicine, and that the medicine will keep away the pain. So maybe… maybe in a few months when things are leveled out… maybe I will allow myself to go on the road again.

I will know for sure when October rolls around and I have the first retreat. The projects are all old favorites, so that should be easy. And the ladies coming are all old friends… well most of them, there are a few newbies coming also… but I am sure I will be me by then…
I hope.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Cool memories

Had to have the AC serviced today, it was frozen which meant the house was getting warm. Good thing I have the service policy which puts me on same day service, it is hot out there.

So to remind myself of cooler days, while the man was servicing the system, I was looking at some photos from this winter... ahhh the memories.

That photo was taken mid way through the second storm in February, and we got another 8 inches on top of that!

And know what, looking at that reminded me have a 3 1/2 inch ruler under my deck... it slid between the cracks when I was looking for the bottom, LOL! It will stay there forever.

Half way

Incase you didn’t know, the year is almost half way over already. The half way point is noon on Friday I think. So what does this have to do with anything? Nothing, just thought you might want to know.

I finally went to bed after 5 this morning, but was up again by 9:15. About half the sleep I need to be normal. Nowhere near enough sleep for me, so I hope I can take a nap sometime.

In the wee hours while I wasn’t sleeping I was working on a new pattern, I thought I had it done. But when I look at it this morning, the pattern is really only… yep… half way done. The block is done, but no other instructions, no precutting and no quilt sizes.

Wonder what else I can half way not get done today?

2:17 AM

All I have to say is…. grrrr dang prednisone

Sunday, June 27, 2010


No, we’re not having an earthquake, it’s the medicine. Prednisone and I just aren’t getting along and sometimes I wonder which was worse, the pain or the side effects. I’ve conquered some of the side effects or my body has gotten used to the prednisone and I don’t have them anymore, as the nurse promised me when this all started. The indigestion is pretty much a thing of the past although occasionally coming back as a reminder. I am being careful what I eat, and trying not to get the hungries. But when I wake up in the morning I’m never quite sure if the feeling in my stomach is hunger or indigestion… as long as I can convince myself it’s indigestion I guess I won’t gain any weight… right?

That I am waking up in the morning is another side effect conquered, sleeplessness. I found if I take one Tylenol PM about 8-9 at night I can go to sleep at my normal 10-10:30ish and stay asleep until it is time to get up in the morning. Well most nights anyway… there were a few very early, pre-sun even, mornings last week, but I’m getting better. At least I don’t feel tired all the time anymore.

But these shakes.. not much I can do when I am quivering like I am. No cutting, no sewing, and no typing either. (Thank goodness for spell checker) Today I’ve been working on a new mystery/pattern and found that even spell checker couldn’t read what I was typing, so I decided to take a break… and here I am typing this instead.

I’m excited about this new pattern, inspired by a photo I saw while blog hopping. And it’s not a photo of a quilt either, but that’s all I can say about it for now. Another one I have to make for myself… I think I’ll make a wall hanging first. It’s gorgeous and I can’t wait to get at it… as soon as the shakes pass.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Why I live at the beach

So I can take a short drive and enjoy this anytime I want to… that’s why!


My sister and I had a long chat on the phone yesterday, was interesting and she’s got me thinking.. We didn’t grow up together and honestly, barely knew each other until recently. We live about 35 minutes apart, yet rarely see each other. We live very different lives and yet in a few ways, are very much alike.

Sadly we both inherited something from our father, hoarding.

From Wikipedia
Compulsive hoarding is the excessive acquisition of possessions (and failure to use or discard them), even if the items are worthless, hazardous, or unsanitary. Compulsive hoarding impairs mobility and interferes with basic activities, including cooking, cleaning, showering, and sleeping. A person who engages in compulsive hoarding is commonly said to be a "pack rat," in reference to that animal's characteristic hoarding.

That describes my father. When he died over 8 tons of garbage was taken out of his house. During our conversation Kathy mentioned to me that our other sister has it worse, and now can’t live in her own home because of her “stuff”. Now I don’t think Kathy has it THAT bad, she is a nurse after all, and I’m guessing her hoard doesn’t include any hazardous or unsanitary stuff.

Kathy was the one who cleaned out most of our father’s house, since just going inside made me sick from the molds, dust and dirt. She spent months going through things to make sure nothing valuable was in there, and sadly, probably started “collecting” then, although I don’t know that for sure. John and Mike helped some, and although I forbid them from bringing anything home, I know there are a few boxes in the garage that made their way here somehow.

Kathy has decided it is time to purge, and is on a cleaning binge. I wish her all the luck in the world conquering this evil. I have it too, I will admit, but not nearly as bad. My hoarding is mostly in the fabric department. And since Kathy has decided to purge I have decided to join her. I am cleaning out my sewing room… I’m not sewing as much anymore, and that fabric isn’t going to use itself up.

I’m going to get rid of the fabrics that I know I won’t ever use. I’m going to sell off the extra Featherweights, since I rarely take more than 2 to a retreat any more. I’m going to find homes for the older Singers that are sitting in my garage never getting used. I’m going to give away most of my duplicate sewing tools. And any gadget that I’ve purchased and never used.. they will have new homes.

Now I can’t just toss them, so I’m donating and selling them. I will have a yard sale at each retreat this fall, or maybe a silent auction or not so silent one. I will use all that “stuff” and raise money for Relay with it. Perhaps I will put some stuff on eBay, maybe, maybe not. I do know I will have priority box give aways… can’t call them raffles anymore. I’ll announce them on here and pick a random winner from anyone who donates… check back, if I have the energy today I might just put one up.

Friday, June 25, 2010


I sewed for about an hour this morning, making another mini quilt for the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative. I had an idea, and I had the perfect fabrics for it, so I sewed.. problem is, the fabrics didn’t quite go as far as I wanted them to. Because of the width of the color band I was working with, instead of a square I have a longer rectangle than the size limits allow. If I trim it off it just won’t look the same. SO… I will try the same pattern again.

I’ve got mini’s on my brain lately. Every quilt photo I see I ask myself what it would look like in miniature. I’m going to try a disappearing 4 patch next. Now if I could just get the energy and mojo to follow through.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Polymyalgia rheumatica

Polymyalgia rheumatica is an inflammatory disorder involving pain and stiffness in the hip or shoulder area. My hips never bothered me, and it started with knee issues and seemed to spread to my shoulders, arms and head. The Doctor said today my slow recovery from surgery #2 was most likely the onset of this problem, and the fact that I have osteoarthritis in my knees is why it hit me there first.

Anemia (low number of red blood cells in the blood)
Not me
Face pain Yes
Fatigue (excessive tiredness) Oh yes
Fever Not me, I had chills
Hip pain and stiffness Hips mine are/were fine, I thought. But when I told her about my waddle, listing when I walked, she said it wasn’t just knees doing that.
Malaise (general ill feeling) Yes yes yes
Muscle pain (minimal, less common than aching) Oh yes yes yes
Neck pain and stiffness Yes
Other joint pain Yes
Shoulder pain and stiffness Yes
Unintentional weight loss So that explains the 16 pounds I lost sitting on my butt for nine months.. sort of

Note: Symptoms usually come on suddenly. Doctor said sometimes, and other times, as in my case, possibly over time.

The goal of treatment is relief of discomfort and stiffness. The disease can be very bothersome if it is not treated. Corticosteroids, such as prednisone, are prescribed in low doses. Low? Nope, started off with high doses and now lowering them weekly until I reach my tolerance level.

Polymyalgia rheumatica usually goes away by itself, even when not treated, in 1 to 4 years. Symptoms diminish greatly with treatment. Most patients need steroid treatment for 1 or more years. How anyone could live with the pain for 1 to 4 years is beyond me, and as much as I hate being dependent on medicine, I will take it to keep away that pain. Now hopefully over time we can lower the prednisone and it’s side effects and keep away the pain at the same time, and I can resume normal… if there is such a thing anymore.

Now I’m going to take a nap, and see if I can catch up on some sleep… then maybe I will get up and sew some!

I was blog hopping this morning

I was up at 4:30 this morning, again. The prednisone is not helping my sleep at all. I either can’t go to sleep at night or I am up before Mr Sun shows his shine in our part of the world. I tried to go back to sleep but the brain was in full speed and the eyes kept peeking to see how light it was, so I gave up and got up.

What can I do this early in the morning when John is still sleeping? Not much, so I went blog hopping. Quilters are still fancying up their blogs with the backgrounds and such, some are quite lovely to see. Others… not so much. There is one blogger I read regularly who has changed her background/style almost daily, and today I had to write her and tell her please not this one. Her print was quite tiny, and white on black and almost impossible to read. Then another blogger added music, talk about a wakeup call, LOL! I about jumped out of my seat when her page loaded… volume down real quick!

I notice a lot of give-aways and contests on blogs too… sometimes I wonder why people do that. I could give away lots and still have stuff left over, especially since I am not sewing as much. Maybe I should give most of my “stuff” away and start over, maybe that will motivate me to sew more. No excuse really anymore, I hope, crossing my fingers and all that. I see the specialist this morning, anxious to hear what she can tell me about my ailments, I sure hope it is good news!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Can I mix the block sizes?

This question came by email from someone who hopes to follow the Summery Mystery here on the blog. She read very carefully the introduction I posted yesterday and wanted to know if she could mix the block sizes in one quilt. I had to admit, I hadn’t thought about it, so played a little with my EQ7 and found out that indeed it would work nicely. However, I can’t and won’t tell her or anyone else how many of which size block to make to do this, mostly because I don’t know what fabrics you are using and or how much you have etc…

SO, if you want to play along, but aren’t real sure what you want to make with whatever it is I’m going to give you here is my suggestion. Start off by making four three inch blocks which when put together will equal the 12 inch block. If you like that, you can play with combining them later and if not, you will have a nice 12 inch block for another project.

I DO like mixing block sizes in a quilt, and now that this reader has put this idea in my head, I might just do that with this pattern. I can see all the sizes mixed up in the same quilt and looking quite lovely!
Thanks for the idea

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Another reason I Relay

I found this email in my “junk” this afternoon, so glad I checked it carefully before emptying it. This is why I Relay, and why I will keep on Relaying until we don’t need Relay any more.

Thanks for writing Gail. Keep up the fight and keep on quilting too.

I was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. I thought my world was over but it looks like I have a lot of world left in me, treatments have been made and I am now officially a cancer survivor. I have scars where I used to have breasts, but in a few months that will be taken care of and I will be a whole albeit slightly altered woman again.

In my time down and it was way down I was thinking about giving away all my quilting stuff since I wouldn’t be needing it anymore and somehow or other I ended up on your blog and then web site. I noticed you were involved with Relay for Life and read what you had to say about it, visited your web pages and wondered if there was such a thing near me.

Your link to the ACS site answered that question and next thing I knew I was signing up for some event about 30 miles away. I asked at it at the Cancer Center and they gave me an invite. I had no idea what it was, but I was going to go, because of your involvement and apparent enjoyment with it.

I went, I saw, I listened, I walked. I cried too, a lot. I am not the only woman with no boobs and I never lost a hair, unlike some of the ladies I met that night. I am alive, unlike some of the people who were memoried on the luminary bags I saw. I am alive, I am healthy again and I am thankful for it all.

Thank you for being so vocal about your cause and count on me to help you out again next year. And I might just join the team or even start my own team here. I will keep you in the loop.

Summer Mystery

This is another mystery for my Mysteries For Relay Group, but I am also sharing it with my other group, Fabricaholics Anonymous and will be sharing it here on the blog also. It’s a great scrap/stash quilt, and us Fabricaholics need ways to use up our stashes.

I call this mystery “Any Size You Want” because you can make this block ANY SIZE YOU WANT. Yep, you pick your size and go for it. Of course that means I can’t give you yardages and such, but it will mean that you can do your own thing. This block will look great anywhere from 3 inches to 12.

And you can use whatever color combination you want, as long as they contrast. You need two values, either a light and a dark OR a dark and a light. Meaning, your background could be a dark if you like dark backgrounds, or it could be a light also, OR you could even mix them up, half lights and half darks.

Now let me explain how this mystery came about. I was up in the sewing room and found a baggie of pieces that had fallen off the desk behind the printer. After some research I realized they were left over pieces for another mystery we have done, enough leftovers to probably make a nice lap quilt. But I looked a little closer, something wasn’t quite right. Uh oh… these pieces were all made wrong, they are booboo pieces, which is why they are in the baggie and not in one of my quilts.

The original mystery was scrappy, so my pieces are scrappy, all lights and darks. You may use the same if you would like. If you want to limit your colors… hmmm… I will suggest you use all one background and eight or more contrasting colors to the background. This would be a good use for coordinated fat quarters, as long as they meet the value requirements.

If this is all too confusing to you and you are already thinking “not for me”… slow down, take a deep breath and relax… you can do this too.

If you make 3 inch blocks, 16 blocks would make a 12 inch square inch wall hanging or doll quilt.

If you make 6 inch blocks, 16 blocks would make a 24 inch square wall hanging.

Sixteen 9 inch blocks would make a 36 inch baby quilt or small child’s lap quilt. Make thirty 9 inch blocks and you could have a 45 by 54 lap quilt for an adult.

Thirty 12 inch blocks would make a 60 by 72 inch quilt.

If you enjoy this mystery, please consider joining my Mysteries For Relay group. I offer at least six brand new mysteries a year as a thank you for donations to my Relay For Life fundraising efforts. You make a $5 donation per mystery or $30 per year and I give you free mysteries. Don’t like mysteries? No problem, once the mystery has been presented and solved, I post the full pattern. Where else can you get six brand new patterns a year and help a good cause at the same time.

About the car…

It’s not too complicated, I had a very nice 2008 Ford Taurus X which the dealer called a crossover vehicle. I called it a station wagon which was exactly what it was, and I didn’t need that big car any more. I figured, I go on three maybe four trips a year, and with the new location for the retreats don’t need to haul as much as I used to, so why drive around that big car all the time? I’d been thinking this for months.

The other day I was sitting at a red light and there were two huge vehicles on either side of me, I thought they were Expeditions but when they pulled away from me when the light changed I realized they were just Explorers and I really felt short next to them. I missed the height of the Explorer, but …

Then I thought about the Escape, but would it haul what I needed when I needed to haul? Would it have the features I wanted, namely 4WD and tinted windows and a key pad? (I’m famous for locking my keys in my car) So I went car shopping on the internet and found out everything I wanted to know and more. This morning I called my local dealer and told him what I wanted, he had one. We bargained and I got what I wanted for the price I wanted, and I’m happy.

Funny, I sat in the car in my garage for ten minutes trying to put CDs in the CD changer. When the heat got to me, I gave up and came in. After work Mike came to check my new wheels out and I asked him to show me how to load the CD changer. Hmmm… it’s not a CD changer, it’s just a single CD… DUH me.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

40 years today ago I got married…

It was an arranged meeting, sort of. My father was doing a camping trip for families with only one parent, doing the hard work like setting up camps, cooking and all the other arranging. He decided I needed to go to, but I didn’t want to. So… he convinced me to come by dangling in front of my boy crazy brain the news that a new family would be coming, one that had a 16 year old boy who played the banjo. OK.. Interesting… I loved folk music and that was just enough to convince me that I should maybe go.

Of course we arrived earlier than anyone, since my father had to do all the work, setting up camp sites, preparing the food, etc. I don’t remember being much help at all, although I’m sure I was. I most likely raked, and raked and raked. Interestingly this campout was held in the area I had grown up in, and I do remember driving by the old family house, the grade school I went to, and wondering if I would see anyone I knew.

Sure enough that evening a little sports car drove through the campsite, nice looking guy checking out the visiting chicks. There was something familiar about him… oh yea.. I went to school with him. Can I think of his name now, no way. But I do remember that we sat and talked for a while and then went for a ride to see who else we could find. No one was home anywhere we went, but it was fun anyway. He promised to come back again the next night and maybe get together some of the old grade school friends.

However I was still waiting for the new family to arrive, the one with the 16 year old boy who played the banjo. As each car arrived my disappointment grew and grew, they weren’t showing up. Thank goodness my old friend would be back later that night, and maybe some fun would come out of the weekend after all.

Evening fell and no new family, and no old friend either. Time dragged on and on. And then my Dad yelled at me that they were finally here. An old station wagon pulled up, and one by one girls climbed out. One, two, three, four, hold on, this guy brought his own harem, five, six… wait that one is a little boy then another little girl, what was certainly the mother, and then… well I wasn’t impressed at all. He didn’t exactly fit my cute profile of those days, although he wasn’t bad looking. But he seemed so occupied with taking care of his harem I doubted he’s even noticed me.

Little while later I heard the guy ask my father where he could find a store, his mother needed cigarettes. My Dad told him I could show him how to get to the store, and next thing I knew he was knocking on my tent. So we went off in that old station wagon to find the store. Little bit down the road he noticed clothes flying of the top of the car, one of his sisters had left her suitcase up there. Next thing I knew we were picking up clothes from the road and having a good laugh. Ok so he’s a nice guy, cares about his family, likes taking care of people he loves.

45 years later, nothing has changed. He still likes taking care of the people he loves. And I am so glad that he loves me and that my father made me go on that camping trip, even if the guy didn’t play the banjo.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

FYI Replies to comments and emails

About my recent quilting. Yes that is a dime sitting on that block, almost completely covering it. Yes, that is a mini for the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative Special Challenge. I’ve made four mini tops so far. That one is by far my favorite so far, a mini Boston Commons, made from one inch strips.

Yes it feels wonderful to be sewing again. My knees don't bother me as much these days, just the occasional twinge now and then. I am keeping up the PT here at home and find my mobility improving every day. I really do wonder if this other issue, polymyalgia rheumatica, was the cause of the lingering issues with my knee after the surgery. Oh I know that is wishful thinking, as the knee Doctor reminded me as I left the office the other day, the knees are almost bone on bone, and I will eventually need replacement, but for now I am doing great, and back into sewing again, so all is well there.

No, I did not get a bad lobster, thanks to the half dozen of you who emailed me about that. My lobster was just fine, the problem is me. Well not me so much, but the medicine I am taking. One of the side effects of prednisone is indigestion and I have it bad. I burp everything that goes in my tummy. It really makes you think about what you eat when you know you will be tasting it for hours after you eat it. The lobster was perfect and had a wonderful taste. So did the muscles. However, combined, burping, not so good.

About pedicures.. Interestingly I had the same amount of pro-pedicures and con-pedicures emails and comments. One new reader emailed me about the luxury of getting one’s feet massaged, how glorious it feels, etc. Another long time reader said she had gotten pedicures for years and I didn’t know what I was missing. I will stick to what I originally said, no pedicures for me. And I am a little ticklish but that has nothing to do with the matter, I just don’t like anyone touching my feet.

Friday, June 18, 2010

No sewing today

We went out to dinner for an early anniversary dinner at a favorite local seafood joint for lobster last night. Was a yummy dinner and we had a nice time. However it wasn’t the best dinner to burp all night long, so I didn’t get much sleep last night, which made me shaky this morning, still burping last night’s dinner, no appetite to eat anything else, but had to eat to take the meds… catch 22. Stuffed down some toast and my pills and pretty much chilled all day long at the boob tube and lap top.

I caught up on all my blog reading, lots of changes on many blogs. Many bloggers are taking advantage of the Blogger Template Designer, and I saw some very smart looking blogs today. Much better than those narrow blogs with tiny print and cramped borders. Very nice bloggers, very nice. But I think I’ll keep mine the way it is for now.

Still fighting the burps, and the shakes. Can’t wait to see the Doc again and see what we can do about getting rid of the side effects.. wonder if that is possible? Do I take medicines to get rid of the side effects from medicine to get rid of the other? When does it stop?

Thursday, June 17, 2010

I sewed again!

It feels so nice to be sitting at the sewing machine and pushing fabric through. It feels so nice to be pressing my project carefully. It feels like old times sitting with Jack the Ripper and taking out the upside down row. I made almost a whole quilt today, start to almost finished. It’s not quite big enough, needs another border, then quilting and binding and I will show it off.

I will give you a sneak preview..

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

One down…

I went for check up on the knees today, and have been given the all clear from the Doc. Yes keep up the home PT. Yes I still need the cane when walking long distances and standing a lot. But the pain is gone, the mobility improved, so as far as the knees go, I am ok.

Except… this other problem may bother my mobility occasionally, according to what I’ve read on line. Up to today I have had little pain, just twinges reminding me that it is there. Today it’s kind of been building up again, the shoulders and arms are achy. I see the specialist, a rheumatologist, at the end of the month, then back to see the family Doc the next day.

Side effects are diminishing as the nurse said they might, I am burping a lot less than I have been, which is good for my manners. The indigestion is still a bother, but if that keeps my appetite down that’s ok by me.

I took Benadryl to help me sleep, two pills left me feeling sort of hung over the next morning, or maybe that was just the lack of sleep building up. One pill didn’t help me sleep, so tonight I’m back to two, and hopefully will catch up. I don’t function well without my 8 hours.

And the best news of all, I did get to sew a little. Yep, cut up some fabric and sewed it back together again into a mini quilt. If I am sewing you know things are looking up, fingers crossed it stays improving.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


Pedicures have come up so many times in the last 24 hours that I have to write about them today. According to Wikipedia “A pedicure is a way to improve the appearance of the feet and their nails. It provides a similar service to a manicure.” Yesterday my sister and lovely daughter were here visiting, with fresh pedicures, today three people have blogged about them, and two friends have mentioned in emails they were getting pedicures today.

OK, let me confess, I hate nails. To me they are a hazard and I wish I didn’t have any finger nails or toe nails. I scratch in my sleep, have most of my life, and to keep from looking like I’ve been in a cat fight I keep my nails trimmed as close to nothing as possible. Over the years I have trimmed some of my toe nails so short that they are barely there, I wish I could get rid of all of them.

I don’t like people touching my feet, never have, it grosses me out. To me to sit in a chair and have someone playing with my feet for hours would be pure torture. I could never and will never do it.

Nail polish? Another thing I can’t stand. The few times I’ve had nail polish on my fingers it has felt so weird and odd to my body that it didn’t stay on more than an hour or so. I remember one time I did my fingers up nicely for some military event and on the way to the event, in full fancy dress, stopped at a drug store to get nail polish remover to get rid of it.

So I’m weird, but I’m me. (Am I the only female like this?) You go out and spend all that money getting your pedicures and manicures and enjoy it. I’ll pass.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Quiting In American 2010 Survey

Here are some interesting facts and figures from the Quiting In American 2010 Survey, and how I think I matched up to those figures.

I find the dating a little odd on this survey, since we are only into June 2010, this probably should be showing the expenditures for 2009. I know quite a few quilters who do their major spending at the fall quilt retreats and some of them spend well over that average just that weekend, LOL!

My comments will be in this type, and the quoted parts will be in italics. You can read the full report, what is published anyway, here (PDF) and here

“Dedicated Quilter” spending rises
Quilting in America™ 2010 survey shows industry worth $3.6 billion annually

HOUSTON – May 20, 2010 – Quilting enthusiasts spend almost $3.6 billion annually on their passion, proof that the vibrant art of quilting is both alive and thriving in the United States, even in the face of the recent economic challenges all across the country. According to the just-released Quilting in America™ 2010 survey, enthusiasts’ spending has increased by 9% since the release of the last survey results in 2006.

Size of U.S. Quilting Market
14% of U.S. households (16.38 million) are home to at least one active quilter
Total quilters in the U.S. now exceeds 21 million, (avg. 1.3 quilters per household)
Quilting households spent an average of $219 in 2010, up 27% from 2006
JUST about what I spent last year, which is way down for me, due to other circumstances and nothing to the economy.
Estimated total dollar value of the quilting industry stands at $3.58 billion.

Dedicated Quilters
Defined as those households that spend more than $600 per year on quilting-related purchases

They represent 6.2% of all quilting households, and account for 69% of total industry expenditures
In 2010, dedicated quilters report spending a total of nearly $2.5 billion

Who is the Dedicated Quilter...
62 years old Well I will be by the end of the year.
Well educated (72% attended college) Yep
Affluent ($91,602 HH income) I wish.
Spend on average $2,442 per year on quilting
That would be me in an average year.
Quilting for an average of 16 years Actually, this is my 36th year
Quilting Style .. 44% prefer traditional quilts .. 50% enjoy both traditional and contemporary styles I guess I'm with the 50% because I like some contemporary quilts, SOME but not all. Maybe I'm in that missing 6%?

So how do you compare?

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Good news, bad news

Good news the meds are working, for the first time in a long time I am feeling semi human. Why only semi.. .that’s the bad news. I think I must have every side effect from this pill you can get, and I haven’t even read them. I figured if I read them I would get them, so I just took it on faith that it would make me feel better. Well I don’t ache any more, except an occasional knee twinge. However, here is it 1:30 AM and I was up at 8 AM this yesterday morning after being up past 1AM that morning. I can’t sleep a wink.

And I have indigestion and am burping like an old man. We even had dinner extra early tonight with hopes everything would be digested before bedtime. But the minute I laid down the burps started. However in a way, that’s good news. Prednisone is known as a fat maker, but darn if I’m going to gain any weight this way… I don’t want to ever eat again if this feeling keeps up every night. I’m not sure I can wait will Thursday for my follow-up appointment, I might burp myself away before that!

However, look at all the time I’ve had to play with EQ7 being up so long… guess that’s good news.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

He did it again

I’m not sure if I’ve blogged about this before, or even talked about it with anyone, but my husband has a disturbing habit. For the last five years or so he has been putting his feet through the bottom sheet on our bed. Yep, ripped it to shreds, beyond repair totally.

HOW he does this is a good question. The first time it happened they were older sheets, way old, so I just decided that was what had happened. Then it happened again… sheets were not that old and were a high thread count, so I asked him nicely (well sorta) how often he cut his toe nails. He said enough and that was all I got as an explanation.

This has gone on again and again, I’ve lost count. I know for sure that he has gone through the floral sheet, the nice heavy thread count white sheet, a tan sheet, another nice heavy thread count white sheet, the pretty yellow sheet and now both of the purple sheets. Yes, two. I got smart and when I bought new sheets I started buying two fitted bottoms.

Last night he told me that he had done it again, and when I went to get a new bottom sheet from the linen closet, there weren’t any to get. I have a LOT of flat sheets, but within an hour of his tossing and turning he is rolled up in it and sleeping on the mattress. I guess one day this week I will have to go to the linen outlet and get a supply of fitted sheets, not going there on a Saturday in the summer when all the tourons are here. He’ll just have to make do for two nights!

Friday, June 11, 2010

So what’s up?

All of the EQs are in the mail and a few of the ladies who have received them are already having fun with them. I got a good chuckle from an email this morning from one lady who said she’d made a dozen quilts last night, on EQ at least.

I got a very nice gift from a dear friend the other day, a new t-shirt. No it’s not purple but what it says on it is a real hoot… “I’m Not Buying Fabric…It’s a Bailout For The Textiles Industry” (Thanks Joan)

As for me I’m not buying fabric, not using it either, still no quilting for me. However, and I know I’ve said this before, things will change soon.

I’ve been seeing the Doctors (as much as I dislike them I can not live in this pain any more) and they think they have an answer to my issues. It is sort of an answer to the many unknowns, why I feel they way I do, why the second knee surgery didn’t give me the instant relief I was hoping for, and why the rest of my body went to pieces afterward. After the vampires drained me of red stuff so they could run tests, some x-rays and lots of prodding and poking they had narrowed it down to two things.. fibromyalgia or rheumatoid arthritis. Our family Doc thinks it is something else, polymyalgia rheumatica and is sending me to yet another doctor for a diagnosis. He had hoped I could see this specialist today, but as always, hurry up and wait, I can’t get in to see her until the 29th and that was with him setting up the appointment for me. (I am guessing if I had tried it would have been next summer sometime)

In the meantime he’s got me on the fat pill, the one that makes you want to eat everything you see, won’t let you sleep at night, and makes you hyper. So far I am fighting the eating thing, I refuse to gain weight getting better. I only slept about 5 hours last night, was wide awake and dripping with sweat until the wee hours... And the hyper hasn’t hit yet probably because I still ache. And I've only taken one dose so far...

BUT I might just let this magic pill work to my advantage. Once the pain goes away, and it will go away… I can stay up all night long sewing, and sew all day, and keep sewing until I fall asleep at the machine. If I sew, I can’t eat, right? I have so much sewing I want to do, more UFOs to create, and all those UFOs to finish!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

EQ7 full programs

John mailed off the EQ7 full programs this morning for those of you who ordered them. I will send you your tracking number tonight when he gets home from work.

I want to thank everyone who purchased EQ7 from me. Your purchases have netted a generous donation of just a little over $500 to ACS to help fight cancer.

Monday, June 07, 2010


My first shipment of Electric Quilt 7 arrived late last week. Before I could play with it I had to ship out all the orders. If you ordered the Upgrade, it is in the mail, except for Marianne’s who was on the road.

I expect the rest of the order today, so they will go in the mail tomorrow. Since those are the new EQers, it worked out great that I got some time to work with it before they get their programs and start asking questions. I loaded my program and watched the videos which are definitely for new users. There wasn’t much new in there for those who had EQ before, but a lot of important information for new users.

One of the features I was really looking forward to playing with was the Image worktable, which I tried to do a little yesterday. I decided I should probably read the book, and it was helpful, and full of information. However, I still have a lot more to read, and lot more to play with. (I have a few floors that need to be made into quilts, wink!) I read, then play, read some more, and play some more… having fun!

Saturday, June 05, 2010

I mean no disrespect

I mean no disrespect to any designer in this post. I am sure there are plenty of designers out there who say they don’t like my work too, and I understand their opinions. I also know that we all have different tastes, some people like scrappy, and some don’t. Some people like bright colors, some don’t. Some people like old fashioned blocks and others don’t. If we all liked the same things, quilt shows would be extremely boring. And I have designed a few quilts in the past which even I think now are ugly, although I’m sure I didn’t feel that way when I designed and made them.

However, after doing some extensive blogging and group reading yesterday, I noticed a trend… just cutting fabric into big pieces and sewing them back together and calling it a quilt. No real design, just … well to me some of them looked like a plain mess. What I find sad about this is that people are paying money for patterns for these messes. No, they just don’t do anything for me.

Now, to cut fabric into a lot of little pieces and sew them back together in a pattern of some kind, that’s a quilt. And then there was Speedy Strips… I’m sure some people had words about that one, but I still like it. As I said before, if we all liked the same things, quilt shows would be extremely boring.

No power again

About 2 AM last night we lost power. I know that is the time because the fan went off in the bedroom which woke me up. No problem, not that hot in here, so I turned over and went back to sleep. Woke up a few hours later, room certainly warmer but still not too bad, and I had to “go”. When you live in the country and don’t have power, “going” is a little complicated. You have to flush with a bucket of water and at 4:30 AM I didn’t have a bucket to flush with. Used what was in the tank and told myself to go get a bottle from the garage before climbing back to bed… I didn’t.

John was up at 6:30 for a scheduled work trip to the lighthouses. However, still no power. He was thinking of going, but I asked please don’t unless power comes back on. Although I may not have said it quite as nicely, since I was half asleep and uncomfortable from the warm air now taking over the house.

I went back to bed, tossing and turning and finally gave up when I heard the generator come on. I knew that the first thing he would plug in would be the coffee pot, and I was right. So I sat down to wait for the coffee to finish brewing and guess what… power came back on.

Sadly John missed the lighthouse trip, so I know he will be grouchy all day… wish me luck.

Thursday, June 03, 2010


I can’t go to long without blogging before my phone starts ringing and my email inbox fills up. Thanks friends, those of you I have met and those of you who are just caring strangers. Yes, there has been a few “issues” lately, but I’m not ready to go into what they are here. Truthfully I don’t know what they are yet! But I am here and I am still able to check email and type (thanks to spell-check) so I will blog.

I am waiting anxiously for my shipment of Electric Quilt. It is June so it can’t be too much longer… and I want to try it right away, incase someone asks me questions so I can answer them… well that sounded good, but honestly I just want to see all the new stuff it has to offer.

And I want to sew, I want to sew so bad it hurts… I dream about sewing little pieces of fabrics together into beautiful quilts, just like I did back in the good old days… sigh…

Good news on the PT, I was actually able to peddle the bike all the way around, first time for that. I am moving much better, some days, other days… we’ll see, I know I am improving, so I’m happy about that.