Sunday, March 29, 2009

Trying Something New

I am an avid listener & follower of Dave Ramsey. No - he's not a preacher ( I couldn't spell evangelistist...) he's a financial advisor. Hard Core too. We live by some, maybe most, certainly not all, his recommendations/teachings....However, implementing SOME is a good way to live. However, we already practiced some financial frugalness BEFORE I ever started listening to him.

His motto is: "Live like nobody else, so that you may live like nobody else" STARTING his program is difficult, and even more difficult to live by when you get "stuffitis".

Anyway - I'm off track here.

He recommended a web-site that I joined called E-Mealz. It's $5 per month & they give you store specific (you can also choose "any" store) shopping guide & a menu for 7 days of dinners. Since we both work, we only eat dinner , rarely eat lunches (usually leftovers), and breakfast is toast or bagels or coffee...At anyrate. ....I am going to follow the menu for a week. I had originally chose the "any store" plan but changed it to "Wal-Mart" today because I didn't feel like I was saving $$$ with the "any store". The menu has a lot of variety & nothing takes a whole lot of preparation. I like the list. It's set up for how the stores have everything set out. My hardest thing was finding the "sizes" they had listed. I never did find a 4lb turkey breast. I ended up getting a 6 lb one....(and Wal Mart didn't NOT have any cucumbers or cantolopes...can you beleive that?)

Prince Charming is a steak & potatoes kind of we'll see how it goes. Certainly can't hurt. We need some variety.

You can choose low-cal too. We might progress to that - but I want to try it out first!

I let you all know how it goes...

Prince Charming put the table for the 6500 together today. i don't think I'll be able to use the "table" for anything BUT a Janome.


PS - no sewing on theIrish Chain. DD#1 was in Birmingham for a wedding shower. It's been quiet here! I dog sat the little dogs. How come they NEVER want to potty outside for me?

My Weekend

Our weather in TN has been a roller coaster. It has been in the 70's all week. Friday & Saturday we had thunderstorms and rain. I hope the rain didn't wash away all our seed & fetilizer in the yard.

I have terrible allergies. I'm allergic to alomost everything, but in the last 20 years, since moving out of california, they are not as bad as they were. Now I just go through bouts of runny noses, sneezing & headaches. Those symptoms are much less severe than they were when I lived in CA ! But this weather has had me on a teeter-totter....I wish it would STAY winter for a few more weeks or GO TO spring....this flip flopping back & forth is making me physically ill. I am too sensitive to take any type of antihistamine....As I write this post, it's too cold to go outside without a coat. A COAT! & Yesterday I was in short sleeves.....

I waited until the last minute to quilt a T-Shirt quilt. I've had the quilt for longer than a month. Probably closer to 2....So I loaded it up & began quilting it. I decided to use monofiliament thread, which was a great choice, because OF COURSE it's got no color....well I started (after a few test spots) and just could not get the tension correct. Then I thought I DID have it good, quilted about 10 minutes and hated the tension....I spent an hour and a half frog stitching....I hate monofiliament thread. I LIKE the way it looks. But that dang thread kicks my butt every time. This T-Shirt quilt was the best I've seen yet (from Mamie!) It was made from various Mickey Mouse T-Shirts and sweatshirts. This one takes the cake. Mamie is horrendously creative....At any rate, after I frog stiched for, what seemed forever, I used a Khaki thread. I thought it was the color that blended best. I thought it turned out very nice. That's one HEAVY quilt. was delivered to the carrier pidgeon (insert Deb here!) and we swapped quilts.

After that, Prince Charming and I (he came for the quilt swap....) went to WoodCraft. (A wood workers store) and we tootle-looed around that store, and ended up buying a "Track-Saw". We had previously only seen it online & it was $800. Got it for about $500 and it had a dealer "special" for an additional track. We are going back on April 11th, because they are having a one day sale & we want a dust collection system....I really want him to have a dust collection the way, Prince Charming is in his shop (as I post) staining the entertainment unit. Y'all - it's going to be beautiful! I think I'll be able to get 6 quilts in that bottom drawer. - One thing though - the quilt shop is in the same parking lot as Wood Craft. i didn't even want to go in! Aren't you proud of me? I am !

I sewed just a tad. And I mean TAD with my new machine. it's SWEET! My sinus headache is too bad to concentrate...

Talk to you all later!


Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Fon's & Porter's Fairies

I bought the Fon's & Porter's latest edition of "Kid's Quilts". In it is a quilt made from the newest panels out by Michael Miller fabrics. They are the fairies of Cicely Mary Barker 9I might have her name not only misspelled, but twisted)

Anyway , I thought it was JUST adorable. i didn't want to shop hop trying to find it, so I thought I'd order a kit from them. Guess how much they wanted for the kit???? Please remember that this is a child's quilt & it only measured 66 X 90....F&P wanted $73 for the kit. Well...I decided to surf a little...

I went to ebay and found the main "panel" for $6.99 and the accompanying smaller "panel" (10 or 12 images in the small )for $6.25 each. I felt like that was a good deal. I bought the YELLOW fairy panel (seen), and 2 matching smaller panels (you need 18 to amke the quilt and there are not 18 in one), the blue & the pink. that's enough to make 3 quilts ...for a grand total WITH shipping of $71.

No, I didn't get the border fabrics, but I figured I could/would find those somewhere someday when I was ready to make them.

I'm NOT making them anytime soon.

I thought I'd save them for the day i have grand-daughters. Which is extremely pre-mature of me, and I'll likely ONLY ever have grand-sons because I want to make girly things and smock sweet little dresses.....

Talk to ya'll later!



I finally got my design board in, yesterday. I erected it & MAN! is it big! I have not decided where EXACTLY that it will reside, but I took it down until I DO decide.

I have not had the chance to play with my *new* machine - been horrendously busy.

Prince Charming rented a bob-cat over the weekend & he cleared the back part of our yard. Then he seeded & fertilized. I think it's nearly a 1/3 acre (there's more, but not flat...) It felt like 13 acres, not a 1/3! I picked up rocks, more rocks & then some more rocks. Limbs, branches, and OH YEH - more rocks. And I'm not done.

Now I REALIZE that one does not need to be a rocket scientist to pick up is the hardest thing to do. My back is so sore. Monday night I came home & was picking up rocks & my neighbor hollered at me & told me that I was making HIS back hurt, picking up rocks & he gave me this little grabbing squeeze the handle & it picks up know what I mean? What a pleasure that is to use! I felt like I was harly working at all...until I had to UN-LOAD the wagon.....And guess what? I think I am MAYBE 10% done???Yeh, maybe 10% !

I placed an order with on Friday, got it Monday. Nice stuff, y'all, nice stuff!

DD#1 has a wedding to go to in May for a very dear freind / sorority sister. DD#1 decided that in leiu of a traditional wedding gift she wants to make a quilt. King Size. Triple Irish Chain. Seminole border. We went & bought fabric on Monday for it. I am going to set aside my Ocean Waves blocks so we can work on this together. It has to be COMPLETED by May 16th.....made, quilted, bound. By May 16th.

I love a challenge. I hate a deadline.


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Janome 6500 Home Coming

I went & picked up my new Janome 6500. i also got a table. These were pretty heavy & that is as far as i got with them. Out of the car &into the garage/basement.
Prince Cahrming was really tired, so i didn't even ask him to help me bring it up. I can manage the machine, but not the box witht he table. It's much heavier than it looks!

Ah, the golf cart. No we don't golf. Golfing would likely be a full contact sport for me. I don't have the patience....we use it for toodle-looing around the neighborhood & it has a gun rack mounted on it. We go sporting clay shooting, trap & skeet & the occsional dove hunting. I'm good for about 50%, and that's it. If we had to eat what I killed, we'd be vegitarians. Because everyone knows that I don't have a green thumb either! Ha Ha ha

I can't wait to try out the new Janome! I am excited, excited, EXCITED!!! Maybe tomorrow. If I get home early enough, clean the kennels, play ball witht he big boys...maybe I'll just bring the machine upstairs and play with IT.

My feather pillows are calling, going to sleep now!

Nite for now!


Sunday, March 15, 2009

TV Tray & Ironing Board

OK I failed to take step by step photos while making the portable ironing board.

BUT ! Here's what I did:
#1 Remove the legs. This really isn't neccessary. but it did making turning it around a lot more simple

#2 Cut 2 peices of Insulbright & 2 peices of Warm & Natural Batting the exact measurement of the top of the TV tray.

#3 Cut one peice of Duck Cloth about THREE inches larger than the TV tray ALL THE WAY AROUND.

#4 Layer the 3 peices of Insulbright between the W & N batting. Center the batting sandwich in the center of the Duck Cloth, put the TV tray on top of the batting sandwich (topside down)

#5 Starting on one side (doesn't matter if it's a long side or a short side) and wrap it up the side of the table & then tucking the excess in, staple the center of the side. We did this on all 4 sides. Just the center. & Then went back & filled in with staples.

#6 Reattach legs.

#7 Add optional handle. I REALLY like the handle.

We had a little problem with the staples. We were using an electric stpale gun & the staples did not want to go through into the wood. Prince Charming thought it was because the TV tray had laminate on the top & bottom or was finished with some sort of hardened glaze. WE had to use SHORT staples for the TV tray.

When we recovered my big board, #1 we removed the peices of wood on the long sides that keep the board assembly on an ironing board. Since mine isn't kept on an ironing board, it kept slipping around. We left one end on it & cut one of the peices we took off, and screwed it to the underside eaxactly where the table comes to.

We cut 2 peices of insulbright & 1 peice of W/N batting (that's all I had of scraps!) and a piece of Duck Cloth. Since the BB is made of plywood, the staples went in much nicer! No fighting at all.

Toted all back up stairs & what you see is what I have got!

If you make the TV tray / Ironing Board - try to find one of the ones that is made from real wood, it will be much easier on your stapler. Not to mention your vocabulary.

They both came out pretty well! and I think I'd like to have another TV tray ironing board - one for taking everywhere/anywhere & one to stay nixt to my recliner.

I could not have done it without Prince Cahrming. Well....maybe.....put it would have been much slower.


Saturday, March 14, 2009

Well - Soon To Be *New Toy*

As you all have seen, soon as I lay something on the floor, the furry family members have to check it out.

So? I oredered a DESIGN WALL. Yes, I know I could make one. But I'm essentially lazy and since I had the $$ (thank you Uncle Sam & me over contributing...) from my refund, I bought the biggest one they have.

I read several positive things about this particular brand. Including how high the price seemed, but was well worth it. We'll see when it gets here. I have more than one place that I can erect it. And I am excited about getting OCEAN WAVES blocks put up on it.

(The photo you are seeing is a stock photo off the Cheryl Ann web site)

I will also show you all a photo of my finished portable ironing table. When we get it done....On Monday while I was at a guild meeting, there was a lady there with a portable ironing board. She had it set up right next to her & not on the table. She said that she & her husband made it. Guess what it was????? A TV tray! She said that they used 2 peices of insulbright, one peice of warm & natural & then covered it with the pillow ticking fabric & stapled it to the underside. HOW COOL IS THAT???

this week, while I was at Seinmart, I found a TV tray. The price was $21.99 but it was marked 50% off, so I got it. Today while at Wal Mart in Dickson - I was trolling around the fabric department & they had "insulbright". I'd never seen it before there. (The clerk said this was the first time that they have carried it & that they would not have it long as they are closing the fabric department this summer) I also found "duck cloth" there too. I bought about 3 yards of the Insulbight & 3.5 yards of the Duck cloth. I figured I can make the portable ironing board as well as recover/refurbish my big board. It's a little stained.....

At any rate. Prince Charming & I will work on the TV tray / Ironing Board tomorrow aternoon. I am also going to have him install a handle of some sort to carry it more easily. I figure that I can set it up next to my recliner for when I am ironing little teeny tiny pieces. As is the case right now with my OCEAN WAVES quilt....And then i can carry it to guild meetings too.

I'll try & take step-by-step photos because I don't know how to do "tutorials"!

I'm glad that little TV tray was under $12, I don't know who in their right mind would have paid $21.99 for it. It has wine bottles & cheese & wine names on it....sort of gaudy! Prince Charming & I were in Sears today & they had a 5 set of TV trays for $69.99 - how come I can't ever find these types of things at yard sales or soemthing?????????

Talk to y'all later!


Thursday, March 12, 2009

Yard Geese - No Feeding Required

I stopped at a furniture store in Waverly, TN on Tuesday. I went in there to look for a farm house style table to use as a desk for our computer area.

I did not find a table.

I DID find these geese. Kinda cheesy, huh?

It was raining when I took the photo. And it snowed. (I know, not a REAL snow.)

AND...I am not a gardener.

We had geese when I was a litle girl. They were named Petey & Penny. We also had geese at the landfill in AL. There were 2 pair. I named them Morticia & Gomez & Petey & Penny (II)

I'll have to ponder names for these 2. I name everything. Sometimes the names are not very complimentary!!!


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Just Stuff.....

This week has been busy & I am only half way through it.

I have spent the last 2 days in Camden, TN which means that my drive was 1.5 hours ONE WAY. that makes me SO tired by the time I finally get home.

Found out today that one of the fabric stores that I like has gone on-line. Check it out you CAN NOT beat their prices. They just got started up with the on-line part. it's a little less than an hour and a half drive from home, but well worth the trip. I am thinking of placing an order for fat quarters. they have them 10 for $12. how can you beat that? You can even "build your own" custom fat quarter bundle. I'm telling you, you REALLY need to check them out. I have only been there once, but the lady that waited on me was really nice. (I work in a primarily man-dominated business & i really relish my time with WOMEN)

I have been working on my Ocean Waves Quilt (s) (yes plural!) It's a slow go right now because i have the 4 HST's sewn into a 4-patch unit & I am doing that little pinwheel on the wrong side for where all the seams come together, to make them lie down flat & reduce bulk. You know what I mean? Well, for 2 OWQ's there are 288 4-patch never seems like I am getting anywhere. I am reluctant to put this away & finish/start another project because then, i won't go back to it! And ONE Ocean Waves Quilt is the only thing / project that I want to finish for 2009. i don't care if i don't finish anything else, but I WANT to finish at least ONE!!!

OH! Did I tell you that I bought a new sewing machine? It's all Bonnie Hunter's fault. I bought a Janome 6500. I have to go get it. It's all paid for (except $100) I just have to go get it. I bought it from a shop in Huntsville, AL. Table included, it was under $1200. I couldn't resist it. NO...i don't NEED a new machine.....I WANTED it. Once I saw that demo on Bonnie's blog, and saw the automatic thread cutter...AND the knee lift for the presser foot???I was hooked! i think I told you about it all will sure makie sewing those paper peiced Pineapple blocks SO easy!!!!

Went to my guild meeting on Monday. it's a nice bunch of women! I enjoy myself while I am there. There is a LOT of talent there, I'll tell you that. I got acccused of being a glutton for punishment because I had brought all my 1A blocks for the Ocean Waves to "pinwheel" the seams on the back side of the blocks......I hope I get as much attention on the finished project, as I did with just the blocks by them self. I don't NEED validation, but doesn't it feel great for someone to tell you what a good job you've done, or how NICE your work is or how beautiful your quilt is? It is for me to hear it. Gets rid of SOME of my self doubt. I am my own worst critic. Aren't you yours?

One of the guild members, and her sister, are considering purchasing a longarm. They are going to Paducah to test drive any models that they have available. I offered to let her come & see mine. To put her hands on it & see how it moves. I told her/them that they really DO need to try as many machines as they can before saying "I want X brand" before even trying one. I also highly recommended buying used...

DD#1 has decided to take a 2nd look at a house we looked at 3 weeks ago. It's a nice home in a newer subdivision/neighborhood. 3 bedrooms / 2 bathrooms with an attached garage & it's not even 10 minutes from us!

I invited my freind, Kat, to come up from AL to go to the Paducah show next month with me. I don't want to spend the night, I want to make a day trip out of it. It would be a 2 hour drive , one way, for us. We'll see.....I hope she can come up. Even if we can't afford to go to the show, I hope Kat comes up. It's been August since I seen her. Maybe i should go down there on one Saturday & we can "have lunch"'s important to keep keeps/makes us feel appreciated...i know it does me....boy! I sure got off the quilt show topic didn't I?

Folks, that's all been up to lately!

See ya later.


Thursday, March 5, 2009

My Fat Dog

This is the LOOK that I get when I go downstairs into the basement. If I get to the bottom of the stairs & turn on the light, she'll come down the stairs to see what I'm doing. Specifically to see if i am going to fill her dog bowl with dog food, or give her a dog-food snacky-snack. We keep the dog food, in the basement, in tall trash cans with flip lids. The trash cans were less expensive then the tall plastic dog food "keepers" that I could find.

You need to remember. The favorite Fat Dog (featured here) goes through 40 pounds of prescription weight loss dog food a month, and the BIG BOYS go through 40 pounds in 2 weeks. I'm not toting all that upstairs into the kitchen. Besides that, there is NO place to store it in the kitchen.

You can beleive it or not, but I sweep those darn steps once a week. I vacuum them less than that. About as often as the dirt will bother me & if this photo is any indication of how often the dirt bothers me, then you know it doesn't bother me too much AT ALL. (upstairs is a whole new matter). You all need to remember. We CURRENTLY have 3 dogs & 2 cats INSIDE and 2 dogs OUTSIDE. The outside dogs are the big boys & they only come into the basement at night.

Back to the Fat Dog - I tried to get her photo when she dips her head down & has a million wrinkles on her forehead. Too bad you can't see her tail & how faast it was moving when I took this picture. She wags it so hard & vigorously that her whole back end wiggles......

I love this dog! She's my buddy. Follows me room to room. Especially to the kitchen.


Sunday, March 1, 2009

Ocean Waves Times Two

A fellow blogger asked me about my progress on my Ocean Waves Quilt. I can't say I'm making ONE, because , the truth is, before I am completely done with Ocean Waves Quilts, I will have made 4. Which is easy to say, when the FIRST one isn't done yet.

I have all the half square triangles finished to make 2. I plan on making one with a red background & one with a blue background.The "other 2" will be with muslin as the backgorund. The muslin was a request from DD#2.

When I picked back up this project earlier this week, I only intended on working on ONE. But when I STARTED the red & blue OWQ's, I made all the 1A blocks & just didn't see any reason not to finish making the 1B's. I have finished 70 1A blocks and there are 72 bock 1B's. That is the stack that you see next to the "instructions". Once I have the 1B blocks complete, that's as far as I will go with making them simultaneously because the side blocks & alternate blocks use the back ground fabric & I am not capable of switching back & forth (mentally) to work in 2 different colors.....

Yes, I am using Bonnie Hunter's directions.Though I have 2 other books with directions! I really don't remember WHEN I started these OWQ's - but the hard part is already done, don't you think? I mean I have ALL the half-square-triangles completed. Even ironed! In the previous post, that's what the big bin on the left of my chair has in it. nearly 4800 half-square-triangles. That is a LOT! I used "Triangle Paper" for the 1.5 inch FINISHED HST's, and each sheet gives me 48 squares. COOL !! I used 100 fat eigths of dark colors & the same of light.Anything "light" just has to be lighter than the "darks". You sew on the dotted line & cut on the solid line. Tear off the paper & iron. Maybe tearing off thepaper is one step I don't need, but they turn out perfect. Every single one of them.

Easy Peasy.

You have any clue how many 2-Pair hst's it takes to make 72 of the 1B blocks? 576, that's how many. It's power sewing at it's best. it's very mindless & I have to get up about evey 30 or 40 minutes & move around. I am getting bored, but I promised myslef that I would finish the 1B's before I started on the body of the first OWQ.

I am making the blue background first.

another reason I am making one first is that I like my quilts a little bigger than I think the pattern is written. Nearly King Size. If you saw th Star Struck Quilt I finished last week, you can see how far down it hangs on the sides of the bed, and it tucks in on the bottom. My OWQ's need to fit like that too. So> Though I am making the # of blocks required for 2, I am SURE I'll need more to make them as big as I want.I'll finish the first one & then make the additional blocks needed for #2.

Lot's of little teeny tiny HST's - it's a challenge, but I'm up for it!


Project Chaos

This is my sewing area. it is upstairs in our bonus/family room. I usually spread out & dominate every inch of space that I have.

this view is typical of any project that I am working on.

It's NOT really chaos. It's more organized then I am giving myslef credit for.

The race just started (NASCAR) so I have several hours of uninteruppted power sewing!

What project am I working on? Actually a UFO.

You are actually seeing counted half-square triangles ont he RIGHT hand side of the chair, then the other bin of half-square triangles on the left. I know when I get all the ones on the right out of the tray, I'll have met my mark, or the required number or subunits to start my blocks