Sunday, September 30, 2007

Friday and Saturday Progress

Friday night was great. The evening went just as I had predicted to my assistant at 4 PM. I was going to have a steak dinner, watch the Red Sox win and the Yankees lose and work on the binding of my Wicked Girly Quilt. All of that happened and now the Red Sox have won the AL East Division. Hooray!

I spent a lot of time in my quilt studio yesterday. The first project of the day was to make 2 inch HSTs using Thangles. I've never used Thangles before and all I can say is I love them! I think I've used all the other methods of making HSTs. One of first entries in this blog included my thoughts on HSTs. If I knew then what I knew then about Thangles that entry would have been different. I find with Thangles there is minimal fabric waste, and you only need to trim one dog ear off and I was able to trim 8 dog ears at one. A very slick process. The only downfall of Thangles is that the LQS close to my house doesn't sell them. But, nearly all of the shops I am visiting next week on our shop hop carries them and I may just stock up on one package in every size. Here's some of the HSTs I made.

The rest of them became parts of 4-patches that will eventually become butterfly blocks for the baby quilt I'm making. I couldn't finish the baby quilt because I need to buy 4 inch Thangles next week.

Since I was in an HST mood I finished trimming 132 1 inch HSTs for my Ugly Fabric Challenge. Gee, I don't think the fabrics look so ugly in a pile like this. Do you think I could call the project done? Nope, I've got big plans for these tiny HSTs.

I started to look for the project bag for the Ugly Fabric Challenge and came across a bag of 32 2.5 inch strips I bought at Keepsake Quilting on my shop hop this past spring. Suddenly I decided I wanted to to try the Strip Cocktail pattern I had. The pattern itself is easy. I had the top put together in a couple hours, but I was disappointed in the package of strips. There were quite a number of the strips that were cut smaller than 2.5 inches. I noticed it when I started sewing and thought I had used all of the strips that were correct. However I missed one strip and didn't realize it until I put all the rows together. So now the top is a little wavy and I will have to trim the sides down to make it work. I decided to call this quilt Singapore Blues. Since I was missing DH yesterday while he was flying to Singapore.

Today will be a day spent doing stitchery projects. Football is on and I won't be caught in my sewing room during a football game. DS and DIL will be here so it will be fun afternoon. I may also start working on my shop hop list for next weekend. I did this the last time I went on a shop hop and it worked well.

Have a great Sunday!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Is it 5:30 Yet?

I can't wait for the end of the work day today. I have a delicious weekend of sewing, sewing, some baseball, some football, and sewing lined up. DH will be flying to Singapore all day tomorrow so I won't be able to talk with him until almost midnight and I'm home alone. DIL will be coming over tomorrow afternoon to sew as well.

Do you have the newest issue of Australian Country Threads Stitchery magazine?

Yesterday I got an email from a quilt shop I visit about once a year on our shop hop. Lo and behold, they announced they have the magazine. I didn't even know they carried Country Threads. I think it took me all of 30 seconds to place my order. I should have the magazine sometime next week. If you're interested you can order the magazine from the Quilted Crow in Boxboro, MA.

The Red Sox still haven't won the division. The Yankees won and the Red Sox lost. Well, it will be over one way or the other by Sunday night. Go Sox!

Time to get ready for work. My car is getting appraised by the auto body shop this morning so I'm off a little early. Have a great day and a wonderful weekend.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

wooooooo . . .

Hear that sound of exhaling? That's me. DH left early yesterday morning. FIL left today. Gone for 3 weeks. Last night I was in the office until 7 doing last minute packing for FIL. I bought dinner on the way home, turned on The War Episode One. Watched one hour of the show and went to bed.

Today was quiet in the office. Two women were at a charity golf tournament and one salesperson was out sick. I was able to get quite a bit of work done for a change. Woohoo! More work tomorrow, but that's OK.

Thanks for the suggestions on how to handle the women in my department. By FIL made my job a lot easier yesterday by speaking with each of the women individually and explained his vision of the department and how I am the supervisor. I think it helped a lot.

This is what I saw when I took out the trash this morning.

We've lived in downtown and have parked on the street for 4 1/2 years and have never had any problems with our car. Until today. A huge dent in the hood of my car. So before I even left for the office I had called the insurance company and had filed a vandalism complaint with the police department. Tomorrow I go to the body shop for an estimate on repairs. Luckily there was no other damage to the car.

Is there anyone who participated in the Stitchery Swap and has not received their swap gift? Let me know. Many of you have expressed interest in another swap. I will be doing another after the New Year. I'd like to set it up as a themed swap. Any suggestions?

Well, I'm enjoying night home alone #2. I was actually able to leave work at 5:30 (the time I'm supposed to leave). I'm watching the rest of The War Episode One. At 8 Navy NCIS debuts, followed by The Unit and, if I'm still awake, Cane. The Red Sox are also on, but I'll probably watch the game on the internet. I'm taping The War so I'll be watching that later this week. I guess that's more info than you need to know about my TV habits, huh?

Sunday, September 23, 2007

I Need Some Stitching Help

Work has truly become my life during the week. In the evenings I used to be able to come home and forget about the office. I could read and comment on blogs and generally enjoy my evenings. However, during the last few weeks, work issues have started to drain me and I've been coming home from work so tired that I'm in bed by 8:30. It's very frustrating for me.

Does anyone have advice for managing a department with three creative, marketing women, each with their own skill sets and four admin staff (two women and two men) without creating cat fights or hurt feelings? Let me know if there are any secrets or what I can do to ease work issues. Most of the stress is handling the marketing staff. The women all have strong personalities and are confident in their skills. Their skills are different, which is good, but it's the emotions I'm struggling with. I was raised with three brothers and had three sons. I guess my skills in handling females is lacking. Does that make sense? Give me a roomful of men and I have no problems managing them, but a roomful of women and I want to run for the hills. Any suggestions on what I should do or resources for developing management skills?

On the stitching front last weekend I used tracing paper and an iron-on pencil to start a new project. This is a stitchery block from an Australian Country Threads Stitchery magazine. I used WOW fabric instead of muslin and so far I like it. Here's my question: Do you see the little yellow flower on the upper left? I'm thinking it doesn't quite look a flower and is missing something. Perhaps a green french knot in the center? Or something else? What do you think?

I'm happy because the Red Sox have secured a playoff spot. They haven't won the division yet, but I think they should be able to do that. If they don't there will be a lot of unhappy Red Sox fans in Red Sox Nation. The Patriots won again today. They are 3-0. Undefeated. Life is good in football land too.

DH and FIL (my boss) leave at 3:30 tomorrow morning for 3 weeks. They will be in Phoenix, Singapore and Hong Kong. They will be home for 48 hours and then off to Rome for 1 week. With them traveling the work load will be a little lighter. Just enough for me to get my evenings back, I hope.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

It's been a while since I've posted. I have finally gotten over Shingles. My energy has come back and the pain is gone. I've been busy doing some stitcheries and today I took one of those stitcheries and made it into a tote bag. DH came up with the saying after I told him I was going to make myself a tote bag to use when I go shop hopping and I was going to use the Jell-O fabric I bought on vacation. So, without further ado, here's the front of the bag. The stitchery is also a pocket.

Here's the back of the bag. I'm happy with how the bag turned out. This is the first project I've made that has a gusset and once I got over my fear of gussets the bag went together easily.

The bag also has a matching mini bag that can be clipped inside the bag. The mini bag was quickly put together, but I'm not thrilled with it as it isn't lined and is somewhat flimsy. I may make a sturdier mini bag another day.

And then, just because I still had Jell-O fabric and I recently got the Wonder Wallet pattern I made a Wonder Wallet too. The wallet only took about 30 minutes to make and is a great addition to my new tote bag.

So now I'm ready to go shopping. Anyone want to join me?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

And My Senior Year Project Is . . .

I had the drawing tonight from the bloggers who sent in suggestions for my Senior Quilt project. I liked all of the suggestions and I'm going to put them into my WHIMM jar for someday projects.

Without further ado the winner is Kathy from Kathy's Quilts. Her suggestion is to sew a mystery quilt using colors outside of my usual range. This will be a good one for me. I'm not a fan of mystery quilts because I always tend to go stray from the directions. I belong to two Yahoo groups where they have mystery quilts so the next time one is offered I'll be sure to make it. As for the colors I will probably use Thimbleberries fabric. Thimbleberries are too blah for me and I would never use them unless I had to.

So Kathy send me the name and contact information for your favorite charity and I'll send them a donation.

PS - In case anyone is wondering, the shingles are nearly gone. Today was the first day in almost two weeks that I haven't had any pain. I'm not falling asleep at 8 PM. And life is good.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Senior Quilt Project

Hi there!

Just a little note to let you know I have to delay the drawing until Wednesday night. I'm working late tonight and don't have all the challenges with me to do the drawing.

Stay tuned!