Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Libby is challenging us to show our ironing boards. I commented on her blog that my ironing board was still packed away. She replied and told me to find an old photo and post it. Instead I pulled out the ironing board on Sunday while I was Playing with Pink. This morning I took photos of my ironing board. Here's the board scrunched into a space.
Here's a close-up of the cover. If you look very, very hard you can see the stitchery pattern that was accidentally transferred onto the cover instead of the fabric. The transfer is slowly coming off, but it's no big deal.
I want to make a big ironing mat for the top of my island. A couple summers ago I purchased ironing board fabric from Iron E-Z, #2019. The fabric is heat resistant. Now I just need to a piece of wood to cover with batting and the fabric and I can put my regular ironing board to rest.

It's snowing here again tonight. I've lost count of how much snow we've received this year, but I know we are way ahead of our normal snowfall amounts. That's OK with me. I love the snow.

I'm have a quilting condo/house warming party the weekend of March 8 and 9. Some friends are coming over and we are going to play in my new studio. Would you like to join us on-line? We should have a lot of fun. Stay tuned for details.

Sunday, February 24, 2008


Just a quick entry to show you I got to play in my studio today. I tried sewing a couple of Triple Irish Chain blocks but messed up on both of them so I put that project away. Then I pulled out a stack of Ohio Star blocks from a swap I was in last summer. I decided some of the blocks would make great valances for my studio windows. I stitched 2 sets of three blocks. Next time I see our handyman I'm going ask him if he can make two wooden valance bases so I can staple the valances on it.

I was still looking for a project that didn't require a lot of brain power. I pulled out my box of leftover Moda pinks from the FQ collection I bought two years ago. I've made one lap quilt and my DIL has made one baby quilt. There was still plenty of fabric left. I trimmed the blocks and scraps into 5 inch blocks and 2.5 inch strips for binding. I was able to put together this little pink quilt with the 5 inch blocks. I still enough fabric for the backing and then I should be done with the Moda pinks.

Happy stitching! I know I'm happy now that I can stitch again.

My Studio Is Put Together

Hip, hip hooray! My studio is put together and ready to use.

Yesterday afternoon I couldn't wait any longer for my BIL to call and say he was coming over to put together my studio island so I decided to start it myself. DH graciously offered to help me even though Tiger Woods was on TV. It took us about three hours to put it together.

This morning DH helped me put the furniture in place and then I spent three more hours putting everything away and setting up the room. Now I need a nap and then maybe I'll try the room out to see how if works.

Here's the view looking in from the door. The island is huge. There is room for two cutting mats, plus space for my laptop and a tin for my rulers and rotary cutters. The base of the island holds quite a few of my UFOs, my printer and ironing supplies. The drawers hold miscellaneous items such as smaller rulers, note pads, other tools, etc. The closet is this photo is my quilting closet. It's chock full of books, batting, other UFOs and my pine cart for storing charms and fabric.

This is the view looking to the left from the door. This is my old cutting table that will eventually end up in our laundry room as a folding table. I want to find a small, useful desk for this wall. The shelves holds my redwork books and projects, thread boxes, pincushions and binders of patterns. This closet holds my larger pieces of fabric on hangers as well as our winter coats and DH's suits.

This is the view looking from the island across the room. My sewing table is ready to be used and is feeling very lonely since I haven't touched in since the beginning of the month. My Red Sox rocking chair is ready for stitching with a great view out the window. The design wall is empty because I didn't know what project I'm going to work on next. There is a bookcase in front of the design wall that will end up in the media room when it's finished.

The only big task I have left is to fold the 50 or so FQs we used for packing glassware and dishes. I may do that later today or sometime this week. For now I'm just happy to have my room ready to use!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Coming Up For Air

I survived the closing and moving into our new condo. But not without some drama along the way. I certainly have plenty of material for my 365 Challenge Quilt now that I can start it. I could write lots and lots, but I will try to keep it short and sweet.

Thursday - first up was the final inspection. We quickly learned the washer and dryer were not included in the purchase because they belonged to the renters. Our own fault for not asking the question sooner. No big deal. After the closing we went to the local appliance store and purchased a new washer and dryer. Our broker had called ahead and told the saleswoman he was giving us a $100 credit towards our purchase. How cool!

From the store we went to the new place. Our broker offered to come up while we were shopping to let the city in so they could take a final water bill reading. However, no one knew the door lock didn't work. So he was locked out of the place. We didn't know the door was broken so when we showed up we couldn't get in. We waited for him to call us and tell us he had called a locksmith to let us in at his expense.

Friday morning the movers arrived two and a half hours late. They were supposed to be there at 7 am and didn't arrive and start until 9:45. At least they brought an extra man with them and had us moved in four hours. Once we were at the new place the parade of people began: the cable man, the contractor to look at the basement for finishing and our computer man to set up the wireless network.

Saturday brought us the new washer and dryer and the island for my sewing room, plus a visit from DS #2. And, of course, more packing and cleaning at the old place. We even took the time for our first visit to the big box hardware store for some home improvement items. I also got my first official mail in the place: five Australian quilt magazines from Treasured Threads. Thanks, Shannon, for making my day.

Sunday morning I had to work at home so DH and his brother went over to the old place to do some more cleaning and packing. Then that evening DH and I went back over to do the deep cleaning of the kitchen.

Monday morning we met with the landlord to sign off on the old place. While we were there the contractor called to tell us he has his plumber's attention and wanted to bring him up to our place so he could work up the estimate for us. Then in the afternoon our friend who is in the window treatment business stopped by to talk about window treatments for the main floor. And last, but not least, another friend who is a painter and handyman came over last night to talk about paint colors and other odd jobs we need/want done.

What have I learned so far about the new place?
  • We get great morning light in the kitchen and in my sewing room. The afternoon light floods the front room.
  • I hate my kitchen sink. It's a double basin sink with normal fixtures. Soon it will be a single basin sink with a high faucet.
  • I may have a larger kitchen in square footage, but less cupboard space. I really miss my six and a half foot tall pantry closet. I'm still trying to figure out where to put the food.
  • We will be painting every room in the house, except for my quilt room.
  • The shower and bath water gets very hot! The water in the old place was lucky to reach a lukewarm temp.
  • We have four different kinds of light bulbs in the condo.
  • The nearby grocery store is excellent. We love it.
Here's a couple photos of the state of my quilting studio. The first photo is looking straight into the door. Eventually that table will be out of the studio as it will be replaced with the island. The second photo is looking across the room. You can see I started putting away items in the closet. The big boxes are the unassembled island. I hope to make progress in here this weekend as I have to make my apron for the Sassy Apron Swap.

Tonight DH is out with the guys and I'm enjoying the peace and quiet of the new place. I'm relaxing, catching up on emails and blogs and happy that no one is coming over. I'm so far behind in blog comments it will take me some time to catch up. So if I usually leave comments on your blog don't think I've forgotten about you, I'll be back soon.

If you made it this far, thanks for reading. Soon I should be back to my normal quilting entries.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Boxes, boxes, everywhere boxes

We have spent the weekend packing. I now have boxes everywhere in my house. OK, maybe not everywhere. My goal is to be able to say to the movers, "See everything in that room. You can take that." With that in mind we have been filling up our dining room since that is the first room you walk into we figured the movers will appreciate having so much stuff in one place. My quilt studio has also become a repository for boxes. There is a stack of bags and boxes for donating near the front door. The corner of the living room has become the area to put the items we are going to move ourselves.

Fortunately, our new condo is only five minutes away and we have two cars so moving some items ourselves won't be too difficult. We will be moving all of our artwork, my sewing machine, and whatever else we feel like moving.

Right now I am so tired of packing and feeling out of order I could scream. Moving wouldn't be so bad if we had done it in a more compressed time space. I started packing in late December and here I am eight weeks later and still packing. If I had to do it over again I would have taken this entire coming week off and started packing this weekend. I guess that's what happens when condo deals fall through.

I may not be around much until next weekend. We are having an Integrity Selling seminar for work on Tuesday and Wednesday which will take me out of the office two of the three days I will be in the office. We have our final inspection at 8 AM on Thursday morning, followed by the closing at 9 AM. We will be home owners by lunch time. Then we will start moving throughout the afternoon. The movers will be here at 7 AM on Friday morning and should have our place packed, moved and unloaded by 1 -2 PM. Our cable will get turned on between 3 and 5 PM. Then my computer guy will be our first dinner guest at 5 PM while he installs our wireless network.

Saturday my cutting/pressing island will arrive. My DIL is coming over to help me stain the sewing table, my old cutting table and the island. Between coats of paint we will unpack. Sunday will probably be a cleaning day for the old place.

Monday is a holiday for us and the office is closed. We have to meet the landlord in the old place in the morning. We have a close friend who owns a Hunter Douglas window treatment business. He is coming by Monday afternoon to discuss drapes and blinds.

We will be very busy. But, DH's spring travel schedule starts the end of the month and I have jury duty in March so we want to get as much done as possible in the new place.

Have a great week!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

I've been tagged! Jackie at Canton Village Quilt Works tagged me for 7 things about myself.

The rules of the meme are:
1. When tagged, place the name of the person and URL on your blog
2. Post the rules on your blog
3. Write 7 things about yourself
4. Name 7 of your favorite weblogs
5. Send an e-mail letting those bloggers know they have been tagged

Here are 7 things about myself

1. I work with my DH, four BIL's and my FIL in a family business. My FIL started the business 20 years ago and each of his sons started working there after college. I had been working there two years when my future DH started there. We worked together for another three years before we started dating. My FIL was not happy when he learned we were dating. But it didn't take him long to come around.

2. Like Jackie, I love the Red Sox. I also love the New England Patriots. Tiger Woods is cool too. Our social life has been known to center around what sports are on TV. Every Labor Day weekend we go to the Deutsche Bank golf tournament in Norton, MA to watch Tiger play for the weekend. In our new condo we are finishing off the basement to be our sports watching room.

3. I grew up in Minnesota, close to Minneapolis. Since I moved away in 1986 I have lived in Illinois, Florida, New York, Virginia and New Hampshire. I've lived in New Hampshire since 1993. My parents and brothers still live in Minnesota. I was the only child who moved away and didn't move back.

4. I have three sons and one grandson. My oldest child was killed in a car accident on Nov. 1, 1997 at the age of 21. He left behind a young wife and son. My second son has been married for 19 months to a wonderful young woman. They are studying to be teachers. My youngest son wants to attend grad school in the fall. His goal is to become a political lobbyist. He is dating a young woman who is a choreographer for a modern Irish dance company.

5. My Irish grandmother taught me how to sew, crochet, needlepoint and beadwork. Her first husband died before I was born and she lived with us until I was 6 when she married the widower across the street and moved there. Going to grandma's house was always easy growing up.

6. DH and I will be signing the closing documents on our first condo this coming Thursday. We are moving into a 3-story, 2 bedroom, 1 and a half bath condo with nearly 2,000 SF of space. We've been packing for what seems like forever. I haven't had my sewing room in order since the middle of December and I'm starting to get very cranky.

7. My DH is my best friend in the world. We have been married to 5 1/2 years and we love each more every day. He always know just what to say when I'm happy, sad, smiling or cranky. I wouldn't trade him for the world. He's 12 years younger than me, but no one every guesses that if they don't know our ages.

Now, I tag the following bloggers:
1. Mavie at Mavie's Place
2. Linda at Sewnut
3. Becky at Becky's Bits and Piecing
4. Janet at Wildcraft Farm
5. Kim at Kim's Quilting Adventure
6. Susan at Desertsky Quilting
7. Colleen at Musings from my soul . . .

Well, it's time to get back to packing.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Just Do It

I never thought I'd be saying this in my quilting life, but here it goes: I'm going to make a Dear Jane quilt. There, I said it (and it didn't hurt too much).

However, I'm not going to "piece" the quilt. I'm going to make "stitch" it. I will trace the block design onto fabric and then stitch the design. I was inspired from a discussion in my Yahoo Redwork group and by Leanne's Butterfly Garden where there she has designed blocks that are stitched.

My Dear Jane book came in the mail today and I can't wait to climb into bed and start reading it. Yesterday I ordered hand-dyed thread from Susan at Desertsky Quilting. I ordered one skein of every variation. I think the variegated thread will look great in the Dear Jane blocks.

Actually, quite a few of us in my Yahoo group are going to stitch the Dear Jane quilt. It should be a long, long term project for me as I want to continue working on my Butterfly Garden. Anyone else want to join in just for fun? You don't have to make all the blocks. I can't even get to the point of thinking I will stitch all 225 blocks. For me, it's all about having fun.

Happy stitching!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

I'm Still Alive

I did not go off the deep end because the Patriots lost the Super Bowl. It was a great game. The Giants won on a double miracle play - the Pats should have sacked Manning and Tyree caught an impossible ball to catch.

I grew up a Minnesota Vikings fan. I've seen my team go to four Super Bowls and lose. So a loss wasn't too tough to take. Of course it would have been great to see the Pats win, but life goes on!

Pitchers and catchers report next week. Spring training is around the corner and, before you know it, Opening Day will be here.

We had a small scare on the new condo over the weekend. I called to get the electric and gas put in our name and learned the tenants had both of them scheduled to turn off yesterday - 10 days before closing. My broker was out of town and I didn't reach him until Monday morning. By the end of the day, the owner had the utilities in his name until closing day.

Sunday the new LQS nearby had a 50% off sale. DH told me I should go shopping even though I told him I really didn't need anything. He insisted, so I went. I found a cute apron pattern for the Sassy Apron swap, fabric for the apron, a three-quarter yard piece of blue TOT fabric and a package of 5 x 7 scraps that will work in my Butterfly Garden quilt.

I haven't spent a lot of time stitching the last few days. I'm still working on the Ann & Andy block for Butterfly Garden. I probably won't get much stitching time the next two weeks. Between all day sales meetings, packing, closing and then moving stitching will have to take a back seat. :(

Keep stitching and keep smiling!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Almost Game Time - A House Meme

Paula has this on her blog and I thought I'd share it. It's almost game time so I'm off to watch it. I'll be back later.

My House Meme

What kind of soap is in your shower: Coast shower gel and NutraOil shower gel for extra dry skin.

Do you have any watermelon in your refrigerator? Nope. I don’t care for watermelon.

What would you change about your living room? In our new condo we are going to finish off the basement into our living room/media room, so I guess we’ll be changing a lot.

Are the dishes in your dishwasher clean or dirty? Dirty right now, but it will get run before the end of the night.

What is on top of your refrigerator? There’s a cabinet above the fridge. In the cabinet are light bulbs, a punch bowl and all the paperwork for the appliances in the kitchen.

What color or design is on your shower curtain? Our shower curtain is Ralph Lauren teddy bears on a blue and white striped background.

How many plants are in your home? None right now. When we move I want to have a windowsill herb garden.

Is you bed made right now? Nope, but it is covered with clean laundry waiting to be folded.

Comet or Soft Scrub? Soft Scrub

Is your closet organized? Yes. I can’t imagine having a closet with an organizer in it. Putting organizers in the closets in our new condo is a top priority.

Can you describe your flashlight? Big, sturdy and blue.

Do you drink out of glass or plastic most of the time at home? Glass for breakfast and plastic for dinner. I can’t explain why, I just do it that way.

Do you have iced tea made in a pitcher right now? Nope. I seldom drink iced tea, even in the middle of summer.

If you have a garage, is it cluttered? We don’t have a garage and won’t have one in the new condo.

Curtains or blinds? We have custom blinds in our living room, sheers in the dining room and bedroom. In our new condo we will have custom window treatments in the dining room, kitchen, living room and master bedroom.

How many pillows do you sleep with? There’s three on my side of the bed, but I generally only use one.

Do you sleep with any lights on at night? No lights, but I can’t fall asleep without the radio on, preferably sports talk radio.

How often do you vacuum? DH vacuums about once a month, not nearly enough for me.

Standard toothbrush or electric? Standard toothbrush, although the dentist keeps telling me to use an electric.

What color is your toothbrush? White and purple.

Do you have a welcome mat on your front porch? We currently use three. One right in front of the door and two next to the door for shoes.

What is in your oven right now? I just finished making chicken wings and will start taquitos in a few minutes (Can you tell it’s Super Bowl Sunday?)

Is there anything under your bed? Yes, DH’s overnight luggage and my exercise step.

Chore you hate doing most? Dusting the wood blinds.

What retro items are in your home? I have a doll quilt my grandma made and a set of silver teaspoons from my mom.

Do you have a separate room that you use as on office? Does my studio count? There is an office corner in it.

How many mirrors are in your home? Three

What color are your walls? In this condo the living room is mocha, the dining room and kitchen are pumpkin, the hallway and entry way are a lighter shade of pumpkin, our bedroom is blueberry yogurt, the bathroom is sky blue and my sewing room is manila folder. I have no clue what we will be doing in our new condo.

What does your house smell like right now? BBQ Chicken Wings

Favorite candle scent? Lavender, a wonderful scent to relax by.

What kind of pickles (if any) are in your refrigerator? Dill pickle spears. DH can’t have a sandwich without one.

What color is your favorite bible? Maroon

Ever been on your roof? Nope.

Do you own a stereo? Yes. We have a small stereo.

How many TVs do you have? Two now, but we will have four in the new condo. The new condo is three floors. We have a 50 inch HDTV for the media room and a 27 inch TV in the bedroom. We will be adding a 19 inch TV in my studio and one for kitchen area in the new condo.

How many house phones? No land lines, only two cell phones. No telemarketing calls that way.

Do you have a housekeeper? No, but I think it would like one since we work 60 – 65 hours a week. Sometimes we are too zapped from work to think about cleaning. Luckily with only two of us there is never a big mess, so we do try to keep up with the daily chores.

What style do you decorate in? Comfortable and eclectic with bold colors and dark wood.

Do you like solid colors or prints in furniture? I prefer tone-on-tone prints. We do have a sleeper loveseat with matching ottoman that has a golf design.

Is there a smoke detector in your house? Yes, one in every room. With new construction you can’t get through the inspection without one in every room. The new condo is the same way.

In case of fire, what are the items in your house which you’d grab if you could only make one quick trip? My DH and my laptop.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

A Wonderful Packing Find

DH and I spent the morning packing and cleaning out our bedroom for our move in two weeks. Way in the back of my closet I found an oxford blouse that my grandma stitched Holly Hobby on for me about 30 years ago. The design is about 12 inches tall. The shirt is stained and not wearable, but the stitchery is still in great shape. Isn't she adorable?

Once we move I think I'm going to cut the stitchery away from the blouse and make it into a wallhanging. I can't to put something my grandma made in my studio. I have an oval canvas that's been hanging out in my closet. I think she will fit perfectly on the canvas.

Thanks for all the encouragement on appliqué. I'm not going to give up. I'll keep working on it until I find the method that works best for me.

Well, lunch break is over. Time to do some more packing. A couple more hours today and then we'll stop. Other than the bedroom, I've decluttered the bathroom and cleaned the fridge. Now we are going to work on the dining room.