longarm quilting blog if you are interested! I hope to start quilting the top, tomorrow, and will post photos of how it turned out.
Penny, Evelyn and Pearl
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
It hasn't been a spectacular fall in terms of color, compliments of the two year drought, but I was quite pleased with how our baby Caddo Sugar Maples behaved.
I've got plenty to be thankful for, this year, not the least is my health. At this point in my life, I have the typical garden variety aches and pains but nothing particularly worrisome or surprising. Feeling darn happy about that.
Also thankful about the spectacular news that I have two granddaughters on the way and expected to arrive in March of next year! No, not twins - Grandson Charlie is expecting a little sister and my younger girl, Katie, is expecting her first baby about a week later. I am absolutely delighted, as you might imagine.
So Katie asked for a Dr. Seuss quilt that I whipped up to surprise her husband when they were in town for Thanksgiving.
Here's the Dr. Seuss quilt (not the greatest photos):
When last I blogged in September, Pearly was still struggling with the auto-immune problem that impacted her eyes. At the beginning of August, both eyes started watering and she developed significant stains under her eyes.
Poor Evelyn. She developed a problem with her, ahem, lady parts. It was like a hot spot but no UTI. Because Pearly is on immune suppressants, we don't like to expose her to other dogs if we can avoid it. Accordingly, Mr. Wonderful took Evelyn to the vet and I stayed home with Pearly. Evelyn had to take some antibiotics and anti-inflammatories for a week but she is all better, now. They gave her the biggest cone of shame I've ever seen.
I finally got around to quilting a Christmas wall hanging top I made back in Virginia, three years ago. The top has been hanging on my design wall out in the studio all this time and I finally threw it up on the longarm to finish it. I still need to put a binding on it but am happy it's done.
Kim lost her boy to brain cancer. September is brain cancer research awareness month and the symbol is a gold ribbon. This is what I put on the back to remind Kim that we haven't forgotten her beloved Caleb:
Hmmm. Machine embroidery. You know, the biggest new trend I've been seeing in quilting has been the explosion of using embroidery, often in place of piecing or applique. That isn't how I make quilts but I hadn't thought about it much, one way or the other until a woman recently brought a lovely embroidered quilt top into the shop. I oohed and aahed over it. Usually, a quilter getting this sort of reaction will just melt into the floor like a delighted puppy. If we could wag our tails, we would. But in this case, the woman actually looked sheepish. She insisted on telling me that it wasn't anything "she" did, rather, she just turned on the embroidery machine and walked away. She didn't seem to have much pride or even ownership of the quilt. She actually seemed embarrassed to get credit for it. It wasn't a false modesty - it was that she just didn't feel like it was "her" work, apparently. So like I said, Hmmm. I have to think about that. If that is how it "feels" to make a machine embroidered quilt, it is a completely different experience from what I have when I make a pieced or appliqued one. I have to say, this woman's confession was kind of disturbing. Perhaps that is just her individual experience?
And on a final note - Hurricane Sandy. All three of my kids live in NYC and of course were affected by the storm. Two of them lost power in their apartments for nearly a week. Bill stayed with good friends on the upper east side, and Windy stayed with her sister, Katie, in Brooklyn. Happily, they're fine.
I can't really describe my dread as I monitored the storm as it approached the city. I had images of them drowning, or getting electrocuted, or attacked by looters, or freezing, or getting hit by a flying piece of glass or a tree (less likely in Manhattan than in Oklahoma, admittedly), or being trapped in apartments with no power, no elevators or bathrooms (or food). The fact that two of my three girls are pregnant, and Charlie is just a toddler made me all the more concerned since they are especially vulnerable. I even worried about their dog, Martin. Would they take her down twelve flights of stairs to go to the bathroom? And then back up twelve flights? Would pregnant Amy be hauling Toddler Charlie AND Martin up twelve flights? Would she collapse on the 8th floor, all alone with no way to summon help???? OMG!! WHAT WOULD HAPPEN TO CHARLIE???? He could wander around and BE KIDNAPPED!!! I worried that Windy would get caught out in the storm and hurt. Or ATTACKED!!! What if Kate and Chris (who don't live in a flood area but are on the storm side of NYC) were flooded and drowned!! (They live on the second floor). What if Bill or Chris went out to get fresh batteries and THEY were attacked!!??? What if Windy ate food from her refrigerator and it was spoiled and she died of food poisoning? Or got sick and there was no one there to help her? If there was something to worry about, I worried.
It is what I do.
I was wondering if I needed to just drive up there and get them. Seriously. It crossed my mind.
I am so thankful that they were spared the worst of it but my heart goes out to the ones who suffered the most - and their families who prayed the same way I did but whose prayers for their loved ones' safety weren't granted.
I have so much to be thankful for.
Happy Quilting, Penny, Evelyn and Pearly
Monday, September 10, 2012
As the summer ebbs and the night lengthens, I am far less likely to miss the sunrise. I can sit on the patio with my morning coffee and no longer have to rush to beat the sun coming up in the east. The August days are typically blazing hot (and this year, we set a record), but just when you think you can't stand it anymore, the cool winds start breaking through a few days, here and there. Moreover, the shorter days mean that even when the temperatures remain high, the longer nights send the scalding sun to bed a little earlier. As brutal as the summer can be in Oklahoma, when I lived in Virginia I actually missed the shudder of relief when the fall rains arrived and things cooled down in September. It is like a good meal after going without - you know how delicious anything tastes when you've been hungry for awhile.
I'd all but forgotten what it was like to not be the mistress of the moments of my day. As an attorney, I had time to check the internet, head to the bathroom any time I felt like going, decide when I wanted to eat lunch, sit, prop my feet up, etc. Retail is different and I haven't had this kind of job since I was a girl. The first day my feet nearly gave out but since then it has been fine, although I am tired by the end of the day. My knees aren't what they once were but bending and standing has got to be good for them, seems to me.
It has been an eye opener to talk to the owner and realize just how close the profit margin lies. A theft here or there (and it happens, sadly), small by most anyone's standards, can wipe out her entire profit for a day. People don't realize.
Evelyn went back to the doctor to have her thyroid tested after being on medication for a couple of months. It was WAY high so they reduced her dosage to 0.5 mg, twice daily. She's looking fantastic and the bald spots continue to be fill in. Moreover, her coat - brittle, yellow, broken and dry not too long ago - feels so soft!
Happy Quilting, Penny, Evelyn and Pearl