Friday, November 30, 2012

New Header

I just updated my header picture with three of my favorite quilts from this year. 

First (on the left) is 2 Marge’s Pinwheels, made from large triangle squares my friend Marge sent me, which I made into the quilt.  It was quilted by Jackie who did a fabulous job as always. 

Next is my Summer In the Park Based on YouTube video by the Missouri Quilt Company (quack quack)  I do plan to use this pattern again, and maybe even again after that.  It’s quick and easy and look at the great quilt.  This one was also quilted by Jackie, whose I just can’t praise enough. (Thank you thank you thank you!)

And finally my Aunt Grace Zig Zag quilt, which is still a top and will stay that way until you know who gets to quilting it.  (I can wait, take care of a few of your own quilts first!)  I saw a picture on someone’s blog of a scrappy quilt she’d made and knew I had to make one using my Aunt Grace stash.  I started it during the October retreat, worked on it through the Angels retreat and finally finished it during the November retreat. 

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Quilt magazine

You know it’s time to unsubscribe to a quilt magazine when you look through and do not feel inspired by a single quilt in it.  Not one.  I’m not going to say which magazine it is, and truthfully I didn’t “buy” it, it was gifted to me.  Usually I can find at least one or two quilts or projects in each issue which interest me but not the last two issues. 

As I said, it was a gift subscription, so I didn’t waste my money.  I just hope the person who gifted it to me reads this so she doesn’t get it again…. although knowing her she will anyway, she thinks I need to keep up with what’s happening in the quilt world… I didn’t know I had a problem with that until she told me, LOL!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

So what are you reading?

Kathy asked that question, and I’ll happily answer. 

While I was retreating The Giving Quilt was released, the latest of the Elm Creek Series.  I'd pre-ordered it so it was waiting for me on my Nook.  That was what I read first and I really enjoyed it. 

And for those who wonder, no I did not get my retreat idea from that book series.  My retreats started in 1997, long before the Elm Creek retreats did.  I have made a lot of friends because of those books though…. several long time retreaters read one or more of the books, decided to look for a retreat and found Delaware Quilts Quilters Retreats on line. 

Then I had to try out my Kindle, so I downloaded Wild Goose Chase by Terri Thayer which had been recommended by a few friends.  I really enjoyed it, so I downloaded the next two, and read Wild Goose Chase next.  I’m just starting Ocean Waves now, and so far I’m enjoying it as much as the other two. 

What’s next?  I don’t know, but I have a great library to choose from on both reading devices!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Quilting overload?

I think I’ve just discovered something about myself, I’m suffering from quilting overload.  Think about it… I’m just recovering from a month long series of quilt retreats.  Four back to back retreats, meaning I did nothing but quilting and quilt related things for a month.

Back up even further, I had eight samples to make, eight.  One for each retreat project, and I did them, and more.  It takes time to make eight samples.  One of the projects I had three samples of although they were not started with pre-cut strips, being 2 1/2 inch strips qualified them as retreat projects. I started in June making four of the remaining seven samples.  In July I made a second sample of one since I didn't like the first one, and two new project samples.  The eighth one was made in August.  Then they had to go to the quilter and what she got quilted I put the bindings on finishing them.  The ones that didn’t get quilted were just shown as tops. 

Packing took me two months too… I started making piles of things to go to the retreats after Labor Day.  Those piles grew and grew until I knew not everything would fit in my car, and eventually I realized not everything would get up there in my car AND John’s pick up, especially if it rained (open back on the pick up truck.)  Thanks to Jackie for taking a load up when she went up shopping before the retreat, otherwise not everything would have made it up there. 

Once I got there everything I did was quilt related or quilt retreat related at least.  That’s 27 days straight of quilt stuff.  Sounds nice doesn’t it?  But it didn’t end there… 

Once I got home it took me a day to put away my personal things, and my sewing stuff just got put in the office/sewing room.  I had business to take care of, banking, web pages to update, household things that needed done after 27 days away.  I had a Dr’s appointment, and then tests and x-rays to get.  It took me a day to wash the fabrics I purchased, and then they got piled in the office/sewing room too.  Then I had to clean the machines we used, a Featherweight and two Jems, with other things interrupting that took almost a whole day until I had them ready to go into storage until the next retreat started. 

The piles in the office/sewing room have been sorted, they are getting smaller.  Some of the fabrics went upstairs, some is still in piles on the cutting table.  The toolbox was straightened out and put away…..  I can see the sewing machine again… 

And the house had to be straightened up before Thanksgiving…
And now I truly don’t have any more excuses to not get in the office/sewing room and finish straightening up and get to sewing except…

Well I think I’ve had enough quilting for a while… I think I’ll catch up on my reading instead. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Welcome Kaia

My niece Jessie gave birth to her fourth child today, 8 pounds 7 oz bundle of joy.  Congrats to the whole family!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Reading devices

So even though I didn’t go shopping, either online or out in the masses, I did get something new this weekend, well new to me anyway.  My daughter-in-law Kelly (I love saying that!) bought a newer Kindle and gave me her old one.  What made it even more special was that her now my Kindle was designed just for us, it’s purple and it has a purple case too, imagine that.  How nice that my daughter-in-law and I both love purple… and I wonder what Steph’s favorite color is?  (I’ll have to ask her.)

Now why would I want a Kindle and a Nook?  I’ll tell you why.  Sometimes there are free books offered for one and not the other, and now I can get all the free books I could ever want! 

And speaking of free books, do you own either device and if so, do you know about BookBub?  They send you a daily email with free books listed.  (Just one email a day, and no pressure at all.)  I’ve gotten some great books that way.  I’m just a bit curious to see how they send suggestions to me for both devices… waiting for that daily email to appear so I can see what’s good for which device today!

Saturday, November 24, 2012


We have a rule in our house that animals are not allowed on the furniture.  There are many reasons, including that I don’t like dog or kitty hair on the furniture.  But somehow someone didn’t get the word, and apparently his parents owners don’t care.  

Now, I hope that they read this because I want to explain something.  Some people that visit us are very allergic to cats and dogs, Cheri is just one of them.  And now every time they come to visit us we’ll have to warn them not to sit on the sofa… and at least remind Cheri not to rub her eyes when she is sitting on the sofa.  I’ve used the dust buster but I can’t guarantee that I got all the offending allergens. 

So I hope that next time Roscoe comes to visit he stays off the sofa.  But I sure hope he comes again and often, he’s such fun to have around. 

Friday, November 23, 2012

Black Friday?

Every year for the past I don’t know how many years, the kids would all be here for Thanksgiving, and every year Eric would show up just as we were eating dinner to pay us a visit.  This year as we were getting ready to sit down the door bell rang, but it wasn’t Eric… It was Kevin home from duty in Hawaii.  He took our family Thanksgiving photo and then caught up with us while we ate. 
We sure missed Jon and Steph who went to her family's home in PA and we never did see Eric, wonder what he’s up to this year? 

Recently tradition also has been to scour the ads on line looking for the best Black Friday deals and then head out shopping in the middle of the night.  The kids, not us.  I hate shopping and Black Friday is certainly not my idea of fun.  Well this year was no different, Mike and Kelly headed out shortly after 8 with a list of items to buy and a map to detail where they were going when.  At 5:30 AM they arrived home and announced success before they crawled into bed for a few hours sleep. 

I can happily report I haven’t spent a dime yet today, and unless we need something at the grocery store, I doubt I will. 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Getting ready?

I see all my friends getting ready for tomorrow, and I wonder… what am I missing?  I did my shopping last week, picked up misc items yesterday, and today… well today I’m working on the 2015 contracts for the retreats.  Is there something I’m supposed to be doing today? 

My day will start tomorrow… all the cooking, then all the eating, then all the talking with company...  

I might forget to post, so HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Bone Scan

I had a bone scan today, my first.  I was worried about it, as I always am when I get x-rays.  I don’t handle the “closed room with no windows” very well so x-rays always make me nervous.  To add to my misery, I also had to see the vampires, which I did before the bone scan, so I was hungry and nervous. 

My turn came up, friendly little lady came and took me back to the dreaded room.  She noticed my Nook and started talking about her Kindle and how much she loves it and about all the games she plays even though I told her I only use my nook for reading.  She told me all the books she’s read, all the games she plays and why. 

Something she said about “home” made me ask her where she was from and she replied “New Brunswick”  I said we honeymooned there and asked where, she said St John and I said yes we were there, I remembered the bridge for some reason.  She went on and on about growing up there, yada yada, so on and so forth, just talking constantly. 

I don’t think she ever stopped talking, but I found what she was saying interesting, and then she said “we’re all done.”  I didn’t even know we’d started, LOL!  It may have been five minutes or a half hour, I don’t know.  Time flew by and I wasn’t thinking at all about what was happening and wham it was done.

Thanks Mary from New Brunswick for making my first bone scan so fun. 

Monday, November 19, 2012

I can’t believe I didn’t blog about….

I am sorry blog followers for leaving you out of the best news I’ve had in a long time.  I was retreating when I got the word, and I did post about it on facebook, but in my excitement forgot to tell you all….
Jonathon finally proposed to Steph on November 5th, and I do mean finally.  John and I have loved her since the first time we met her, and have been waiting patiently for him to make it official.  They’ve been a serious couple for five years, and act like an old married couple in my opinion, so it’s about time! 

They called me just as I was getting in bed, and told me the whole story… they went out to dinner and then took a walk (against her wishes) on campus where they met.  She was freezing but he insisted and she was surprised when he got down on his knee and proposed.    
The ring is dazzling and I am truly impressed with his taste, even if it was too small.  I am so happy that even two weeks later I’m tearing up just writing about it. 

I love you both so much! I’m so happy my boys found such wonderful ladies to make them so happy. 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

More good news

I forgot to add yesterday that my month long stay in Lancaster only gave me an additional three pounds.  Why is that good news?  I could have easily gained a hundred pounds up there; the food choices are so many and all so yummy.  But I was a good girl and was very careful what I ate, resisting so many wonderful treats.  And I think if it hadn’t been Halloween, I may not have gained any at all.  But those Angels insisted on bringing candy and someone in November brought trick or treat leftovers!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Good news!

I went to see the rheumatologist today and all is well.  We’re going to try reducing my meds one ml at a time, rather than half dosage.  Hopefully my old body will adjust better that way, and I won’t have another flare up!

Thursday, November 15, 2012


While I was retreating up in Lancaster County PA we had some really nasty weather.  First on the 19th of October while we were sewing away in the conference room the lights started flickering and acting all weird.  I called the front desk and was told that it might be because of the storm we were having, high winds and sideways rain.  Down in the conference room we were oblivious of the storm, and kept on sewing.  However a few miles away in nearby Paradise an EF 1 tornado touched down and created havoc.    

Then on October 30th Sandy blew in.  Rain and wind beat on the Inn, but we did well, only losing power for seconds.  I wish I could say the same for those who did so much worse. 

On Tuesday Nov 6th we watched a nor’easter come up the coast, crossing our fingers it wouldn’t do any more damage to areas already suffering from Sandy.  They predicted snow for our area, and a few of my ladies decided to come early to avoid traveling in the mush.  Fortunately the weather wasn’t as bad as predicted and everyone arrived safely. 

We saw very little sun while up there, but when we did it was glorious. 


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

What did I do?

While I was retreating in Lancaster I did a lot of laughing, an awful lot of laughing, so much so I came home with sore ribs from laughing so hard.  Not that sore that I can’t still giggle at some of the antics that made me laugh so hard. 

I did some shopping, more than I thought.  I’m washing fabrics now, I think I will have two full washer loads, maybe even three.  But I got some great bargains and added some needed colors to my stash. 

And I did some sewing.  The first week I made some wobbly blocks on purpose.  However when I went to sew them together they stretched more than I thought they would, so I set that project aside and started on another one. 

I had seen a quilt on someone’s blog and fell in love with it.  It was a simple pattern, tiny squares in pairs of nine patches set on point with alternating solid squares.  There wasn't credit to any designer, so I just made up my own pattern…  I cut 2 inch strips of Aunt Graces, a lot of 2 inch strips.  Then I sewed them together and made blocks, a lot of blocks.  When I counted, and measured, I realized I need more… a lot more.  So I cut more and made more and cut even more and made even more and then I put it together.  I had to make even more blocks to finish it. 

And here is it, almost finished.  I added a scrappy 2 1/2 inch border to what you see here.  This is a king size bed, we have a queen, so I’m pretty sure it will fit nicely once it is quilted and washed.  I love it!

Here's a picture with the border on it. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Four weeks is a long time

Four weeks is a long long long time, I can tell you that for certain.  For every good minute there was a minute I missed being home, and I am just now realizing how much I missed home.  Tonight when I went in to the bathroom I forgot which light switch turned on the light…  was I really gone that long?

Yes I laughed myself silly many times, and enjoyed every laugh.  But I missed fall here at home, the leaves were just starting to turn when I left and now the trees are bare.

Yes I got a lot of sewing done, but the housework fell far far behind.  John did a great job keeping the house neat, but it wasn’t as neat as I like… and he washed a table runner that had never been washed, and dried it… now it’s a shriveled mess, and I will have to block it to get it neat again. 

Yes I made some new friends, but I missed out on a wedding, the last niece to tie the knot and leave the Gordon clan. 

Yes I had two fabulous roommates, but they weren’t John.  I actually missed his snoring.  I slept like a baby in my old lumpy bed last night with his music soothing me and welcoming me home. 

I am so glad to be home, and I promise myself that I will not leave home for such a long time ever again… not unless I bring John with me to keep me company. 

Longaberger Sewing Basket

I totally forgot to announce who won but first have to tell you how the winner was drawn.  My intentions were to have someone at the front desk at the Inn pull the winning ticket, and I would take photos of the drawing and the winning ticket.  However, no one was at the desk when I went there for the drawing.  So I headed down the first floor hallway to find a non-retreater to pull the ticket.  I was sort of hoping one of John’s shopping sisters would do it for me, but instead a poor innocent man was accosted as he came out of his room for his morning coffee. 

I rushed up to him with the basket in over my arm and said can I ask you a favor….  He looked at me strangely, and I certainly understood why, so I said I need someone to draw a winning ticket from this basket.  He said sure, and reached in and pulled one ticket out.  I asked him to fold it in half and hand it to me. 

Then I went to the lobby and asked the husband of one of the retreaters to read the name for me.  Then I asked one of the retreaters to read it out loud, and asked if she knew who that person was.  She said she didn’t know who it was, and I was a bit sad, I’d really hoped someone who was there would know the winner and be able to deliver it in person, saving that person postage. 

So then I read the ticket, and…. The winner was Sandra Rementer a.k.a. Sandie who was sitting at the next table.

Thank you to everyone who bought a ticket and made a contribution to Relay For Life in hopes of winning the basket.  Your donations will help someone who has hopes of beating cancer.

Monday, November 12, 2012

I'm Home!

Arrived Home Sweet Home at 4:20. YIPPEE

Sunday, November 11, 2012

It's finally over

Four weeks of retreating has taken its toll on me for sure, I hurt all over…. from laughing. I can hardly remember a time I’ve laughed so hard, and I can’t wait to do it again next year.

Thanks to the Piecemakers, October Retreaters, Angels and the November gang for a truly wonderful fall retreat season.

Thanks to the staff at Amish View Inn and Suites for making me feel so much at home and for taking such good care of me.

Thanks to my roomies Anne and Candy, and finally Jonathon and Steph for putting up with me. (Thanks to Jon and Steph for loading the car too! And taking home all the extra “stuff” so I can take Anne to the airport not tied to the roof.)

And thanks to John for letting me take this adventure. I’ve missed you more than I laughed, and that was an awful lot!

Friday, November 02, 2012

Being Bald all day

Only two of us stayed bald all day, Mary and I. Others tried, but gave up when their heads starting hurting. Mary and I persevered and I can tell you, it wasn’t easy. There were many times I was close to tears, but I remembered how much Cheri hurt from her treatments… and how much Kathy cried when she was going through it too… And I remembered Bingo Betty, and dear little Annie, who didn’t make it.

Thanks to everyone for trying, and thanks for all the donations.  So far I have raised $660 and I am happy with my total!

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Be Bold, Be Bald

Tomorrow I and several other retreaters will be going bald in support of and in honor of friends who had no choice. Thank you in advance to all of the ladies who are joining me, and to all of you who have sponsored me. A BIG thank you to Helaine for putting me over my goal (although the check hasn’t been posted yet)

If you would like to sponsor me, you may make a donation at
Thank you

YES, I will post photos tomorrow!