Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Ten more days…

Ten days to Relay.  Yesterday someone asked me why I Relay.  I have many reasons, here’s just a few. 

Bob S a survivor, Bourbon Z a survivor, Carol D a triple survivor, Cheri G a survivor, Colleen B a survivor, Darlene C a survivor, Deke M a survivor, Jack G a survivor, Joan K a double survivor,  Joanne H a  survivor, Joe S a survivor, Lydia P a survivor, Marge H a double survivor. Marianne U a survivor, Mary Ann S a survivor, Merrill H a survivor, Pat E a survivor. 

Monday, April 29, 2013


It’s the end of the month so I’m updating pages and more.  I updated my UFO list, I went up one rather than down.  But I’m not at all disappointed in that number because what it doesn’t show is that I actually made start to finish five baby quilts at the retreat. 

For May I am showing projects I finished from 1999 to 2000 and the freebie project will be a Ribbon Quilt Quilt, http://delawarequilts.com/Projects/Yearly/RibbonQuiltQuilt.pdf

Sunday, April 28, 2013


Grandkitty Simba sitting on the window sill where he can keep an eye on both the living room and the sun porch at the same time, not to mention the front door incase anyone should come in he needs to approve entry to. 

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Another northern weekend

We’re up in the northern part of the state helping kids get settled in their new home.  Well new to them anyway.  Darling little Cape Cod almost as old as I am, and in just about the same shape too, LOL!  Lots of stuff to do here still but already it feels homey to me.  I think they will be very happy here once it starts to feel like home to them too.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Money restored....

I am very happy to report that the missing money has been restored. 

I am very happy to report that the missing money has been restored. 

Yes, I said it twice.  I got it back twice.  Wonder how long it will take them to fix that problem?

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


A few have asked if my money was restored… nope… not yet.  And I am not happy.  Far from happy …… quite the opposite really.

I have however begun the search for a new bank. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

NOT a good start

Ever had one of those days where you just want to crawl under a rock?  Today’s the day for me.  I got up this morning, made my coffee, took my pills and sat down to check email.  First email I opened was a notice from the bank that they had transferred over $2000 from one account to another to cover a withdrawal. 
Hold on one minute, heart in throat, we HAD over $7000 in that checking account and if you had to cover an additional $2000 plus that means someone took $9000 from our checking. 

Heart beating wildly, I went on line to check accounts.  On line banking confirmed the same, I had a zero balance in checking and less money in other accounts… something was way wrong somewhere… 
So I called, told story to this person, then to another and then another and then another.  Finally got to someone who could help me and solve the problem, I think… I hope!  All a big mistake, the banks, not ours.

But in the meantime I have $0.00 in my checking account, and the end of the month is right around the corner and that means two mortgage payments and miscellaneous other bills, who’s going to take care of them, and how many other overdraft charges will they charge me. 
Now my head is pounding too, and I have this sick feeling in my stomach, and I just want to scream….  I am assured that everything will be reversed and it will all be restored, but I better transfer money from my savings to checking just incase it takes longer than they anticipate… 

I let loose a good scream and tell the poor lady on the other end of the phone exactly what I was feeling and apologized to her for taking it out on her but I’d had it with that bank. 

Bank history, we opened an account at that bank back in 1976 when no one would accept out of state checks here at the beach.  The bank has been bought out so many times that I can’t even count them anymore and now this mega bank is there and this is not the first problem we’ve had with them.  Guess what, this is strike six… and if this problem is not taken care of before my auto bills are withdrawn from my checking I am moving every dime I have in that bank to somewhere else…

Monday, April 22, 2013

Long weekend

Our weekend started Friday morning when we headed north to Wilmington to help Jonathon and Steph move into their new house, finally.  Lots of repairs have been done and their little Cape Cod is now a cozy home, or will be once all the critters and creatures are settled.  Simba is already settled, bossing us all around when we are in his way.  It was a fun weekend, and I even got some sewing done, re-stuffing the arms of their recliner sofa.  It was quite a challenge to my fingers, but I got one done, one more to go!

Friday, April 19, 2013


Once upon a time at another hotel we had a housekeeper who was very special to us.  She always took extra good care of all of the retreaters, going out of her way to make our stay a pleasant one. 
We loved her so very much that we made her a special little quilt, a lap size signature quilt that everyone signed with their sentiments.  She was thrilled when we gave it to her, speechless and in tears, it was a very moving moment. 

Few years later she started slowing down, and then between retreats she was let go.  Someone, and I can’t remember who, told us that she had passed away.  We were all quite sad to hear of her passing.

Fast forward to last week…. I was talking to a housekeeper at the new hotel who had worked at the old one.  We were remembering different people and the little old lady story came out of my mouth.  And she said that was Betty… and I said no, not Betty, Betty was the assistant who worked with the head housekeeper.  She said there were two Betty’s and then it came back to me, yes there were two Bettys. 

And then she said that she played bingo with Betty occasionally, and I said no, can’t be the same, we heard she had passed away.  She said no, she plays bingo with her.  I went and got a picture off the web site of Betty and her quilt and showed it to her and she said, yep, that’s Betty. 

Then she went one step further and got me a phone number for Betty.  I called several times over the weekend and again last night, still no answer. 

At 8:30 this morning the phone rang, and guess who it was.  She sounded very alive to me, her usual happy self and almost as excited to be talking to me as I was talking to her. 

And I can’t wait to see her again next time we’re retreating! 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Buyers beware

So I’m working on project ideas for the fall retreats, and I see a trend in patterns. 

I don’t look at patterns in the stores; I usually make my own patterns and haven’t purchased a pattern since I can’t remember when.  And the same pretty much holds true to patterns on line.  I just don’t purchase patterns.  The pattern I am talking about here was a freebie which someone picked up at a shop at the retreat and shared with me.  I liked the pattern, but not the instructions and the waste which anyone who followed the instructions would have. 

Many many patterns are made for pre-cut strips and either five or ten inch charms.  That’s OK because you can always cut your own if you want and not have to pay an arm and a leg for the pre-cuts.  OR you and save time and work and purchase them.  I myself have fallen into that category a few times lately, buying pre-cuts.  (Don’t faint)

However what I find truly disturbing is this  -  Included in the requirements are 1 package 10" squares (forty squares, two each of twenty different fabrics)

But the next step says: 
From squares:
• Cut eight squares into thirty-two 2 1/2" x 8 1/2" strips for the border.
• Trim thirty-one squares to 8 1/2" squares.

Let’s do the math.....
If you cut a 10 inch square into 2 1/2 inch strips, you will get four strips per square IF the pinked edges allows.  I tried this and could only get three per pre-cut square which meant I was wasting fabric, expensive fabric at that. 

And if I can only get three 2 1/2 inch strips per ten inch square, I would need 11 squares to make thirty-two 2 1/2 strips for the border… 

But I need thirty-one ten inch squares to trim down to 8 1/2 inches, wasting more costly fabric.  If I was using a pre-cut ten inch square package it would have to have in it 42 ten inch squares in it to make the pattern recommended by the manufacturer… of course, so you have to buy extra and waste more. 

The pattern also calls for strips, and I won’t even tell you what it tells you to do with them… what a waste of time, work AND money. 

I guess this is a case of buyer beware, read the directions carefully. 

PS, as for this pattern, I will not be making it with pre-cuts but will probably make it by cutting my own fabrics.  Maybe more time consuming, but much less waste of money and fabrics. 

Finding friends

I made two new friends at the retreat last week, Lisa and Kim, and finally got to meet in person a friend I’ve known for years on line, Peggy, which was delightful.  Retreats are my best way of making new friends, people I have lots in common with, people I can carry on conversations with too. 

I don’t know how most people go about finding new friends, but apparently that is a big deal on facebook. Most of my facebook friends are quilters, people I have things in common with. My facebook friends are people I can carry on a conversation with about things that we both care about, be it quilting, Relay, birds or a good book we just read. Some of my friends are family members, and they come with different kind of conversations.
It kind of cracks me up when I go into facebook and they “recommend friends”. Nine times out of ten, I haven’t a clue who the person is that they are recommending to be my friend. Sure Mr Smith is friends with Jane Doe who is my friend, but why do you think Mr Smith and I would be friends. Jane is a quilter and Mr Smith… well I don’t see anything at all on his page that leads me to believe I would want to be friends with him, either on facebook or in person.

Call me old fashioned, but I don’t want to be friends just so my “friends” number is higher than someone else.  I want real friends, even on facebook. 

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

"What did you do?"

Kathy wanted to know what I did at retreat.  Well… I took two bolts of flannel with me, all pre-washed and ready to be made into baby quilts for Bob’s Blankie Brigade.  I had good intentions, but had never worked with flannel before.  The whole conference room heard a lot of grumbling and whining from me as I made the first blanket, beginning to end, quilted and everything. 
The second one went a little smoother, as did the third and fourth.  I changed things up a bit on #5, but only because I wanted to add some design fun to it, and it looked pretty good.  And there wasn’t any grumbling at all, I think… they went much smoother as I went on.

And #6 and more are in the works too.  I have enough blocks cut for at least two more, possibly three. 

I did cheat a little in “using up the flannel”  I wrapped up two pieces for the Pollyanna exchange, which got a good laugh when that gift was opened. 

And by the way, I took three other projects with me, and … well… I brought them home too. 

Spring Retreat

No I didn’t forget to post while retreating, I just didn’t have time.  My days were packed with sewing and laughing and eating and laughing and sewing and laughing and more laughing.  We all had a wonderful time and it was hard for it to end.  e TheThe

Although the retreat ended on Sunday, to me it’s not really over until I get the photos posted, which I finally did last night. 

We had three newcomers this time, Kim from Michigan, Lisa and Peggy both transplanted Texans now living in Maryland and Ohio.  Peggy and I have been on line friends since at least 2004 but this was the first time I got to give her an in person hug.   Everyone quickly became friends and the whole group melted into one happy quilting family. 

Thanks to all of those ladies for a truly delightful week. 

Monday, April 08, 2013

Never forget

Over one million Jewish children were killed in the Holocaust, and approximately two million Jewish women and three million Jewish men. 
In high school we learned about the Holocaust but learned more from an experiment in one of my classes.  The teacher decided that people with red hair were bad, and should be done away with.  He put all of the kids who had red hair in a closet, I think there were four or five of them.  Then he stood outside that closet door and talked about the tortures that were inflicted on the Jews, believe me, not all of them.  Some of the kids laughed, the kids in the closet were very quiet.  One guy was crying, and the teacher said he would be the first one killed.   (Later they told us he had prepared them and knew in advance what would happen.)
Then we discussed it, and a few kids still didn’t “get it”.  One I remember was a football jock, although we didn’t call them jocks back then.  He just kept saying no one could do that to him.  The next day the teacher said that football was bad and unnatural, and he went on and on until most of us agreed with him, and then the jock understood. 
Never forget.

Sunday, April 07, 2013

Bags are packed

Bags are packed except my clothes, have to wait for laundry to finish.  Everything is in the car except for a few last minute things.  I always have last minute things.  I’ve checked my lists, both mental and in excel, and I think I have it all.  If I’ve forgotten anything I hope I can get up there. 

I keep trying to remember things that other people forget, and make sure I have mine… Thread, you would be surprised how many ladies have shown up without thread.  Parts to sewing machines, if I had a dollar for each part left behind I’d be rich… how can you forget your foot controller?  Better make sure I have mine.  Scissors, yes ladies come without scissors, but I always have a spare pair… better make sure. 

I supply some tools for everyone to use, rulers, rotary cutter, and when someone is flying in I even have a Featherweight for them to use.  I have three huge cutting mats, almost time to replace them, wonder if I can find them on sale this trip? 

Yep, I think I’m ready, almost. 

Saturday, April 06, 2013

And the packing begins….

Spring Retreat starts in a few days, I need to get ready.  First I have to decide what projects I am taking with me.  I have two bolts of flannel that I want to make baby quilts with, pre-washed and packed…  Then what?  Well I have a huge list of want-2-make, just to decide.  And I’m not taking any UFOs, I want to make some not finish any, if that makes any sense to anyone. 

This is just a one week trip, and if I really apply myself, don’t go off shopping or spending a lot of time out of the conference room, I could accomplish a lot.  And if I didn’t have to sleep, wow, think of all the work I’d get done. 

But the biggest distraction at the retreats is visiting with friends.  I can sew alone at home, but only at the retreats do I have someone to chat with so I can’t let that precious opportunity go wasted, I must catch up with everyone if possible and still get a lot of sewing done….

Wish me luck, I’m going to need it. 

Friday, April 05, 2013

Need to share

This morning while having my morning coffee and chatting with my friend Marge in Ark she asked me if I’d seen the latest Missouri Star video, I said no.  So she sent me a link to it.  Before I even had a chance to look at the video, another quilter sent me that same link and asked if I thought it would make a good mystery.  So I looked at the video, very interesting, and yes, it would make a great mystery.  BUT, before I could reply to either of those emails someone else sent me the SAME link. 

I think I will be making one myself, only as a charm quilt, each square different.  And I won’t be using charm packs either, but cutting squares from my stash… I have lots to cut from.  (I’m thinking Aunt Graces!) 

I doubt if I’ll use it as a mystery because I want to share it with all my quilt friends now… here’s the link so everyone can see it!   http://youtu.be/4KkpbFKBaKA

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Errand Days

Both yesterday and today have been errand days, running here there and all over kingdom come.  But running is over for now, the car is going in the shop for its spring tune up or an oil change as some people call it.  And while the car is in the shop I’ll be getting ready for the retreat… beyond time to start getting ready so I’d better get a move on. 

I keep telling myself after 17 years I should do know what I need to do to get ready for each retreat.  And after 17 years and 43 retreats you would think I knew what all I needed to take with me.  But somehow I always manage to forget something, even if it’s not always critical.  At least I don’t forget my sewing machine cords like some people do, almost every year someone does, and knock-on-wood I never have…. But then again, I usually take a spare machine just incase!

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

$10 worth a million

I had an inner struggle today, having to do with money.  Did I spend what I considered a lot for something that had no value to me for something I said I would do?  Money is tight and I really thought I was being dim-witted in spending what I did. 

All the way home from my errand I was kicking myself for spending the money and then telling myself that I had done the right thing in spending it… back and forth, good and bad, arguing with myself over the money spent. 

And when I got home and checked email someone had made a $10 donation to my fundraising efforts…  and I felt like an idiot for even thinking of not spending what I did.  Many people have donated to my causes, why did I struggle so much to spend what I did.  In a way, I was paying it back and forward at the same time. 

That $10 donation was worth a million to me.  And a million thanks go to the special lady who made me aware that I owe a lot to so many and I should never hesitate to return the favor. 

Monday, April 01, 2013

April's Project of the Month

For this month's project I'm sharing an updated version of a tessellated baby quilt, just one of my many firsts in 1998. 

Running behind

I’m behind on things today after spending the last three days at my son and future daughter-in-law’s future home.  They lucked out in the house hunt and found an adorable Cape Cod house built in 1951.  It was a bank owned property in need of some TLC and updates in a great location with a terrific yard.  This weekend a lot of painting got done inside, and a lot of plumbing was finished, and a new refrigerator delivered.  (Hopefully this week the electrical will be finished so they can plug in that frig, LOL!)

Since there was no water, and since I am let’s just say not up to normal right now, there wasn’t a lot I could do.  However I had one objective and that was to cut back the thorn bush from h-e-double-hockey-sticks. 
I took this
back to this. 

I will not show you a picture of my arms and hands or anywhere else this nasty got me, but know that it won’t be scratching anyone else again as long as I’m around.

Now… let’s wait and see if it comes back and blooms… 

The Giving Quilt winners are:  Karen, Granny Lyn, Susan, Lisa, Casey, Nancy and Joanne

There were several noreply-comment@blogger.com comments, and since I had no way to reply to you, I couldn’t have notified you if you had won.  And there were a few  noreply-comment@blogger.com comments which did leave their email in their comments, so I could reply to them if they won, which I appreciated when I had to notify one or more of them.  If you want to win, you have to give us a way to notify you.

I want to thank Plume Books for allowing me to do this giveaway, and of course Jennifer Chiaverini for writing this book and all the others in the Elm Creek series!

PS, if you haven't read it yet, Jennifer Chiaverini’s THE GIVING QUILT, will be available in paperback tomorrow from Plume Books.