Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Kyle's Med School Interview

Well, Kyle stopped by before heading back to Urbana. He thinks that the interview at Rush University went well. Now, we wait. The Medical School admissions people said he would hear in about 4 weeks - either yes, no, or waiting list.

I need chocolate!

Chocolate wrapper wisdom of the day..."Love without rules."

Monday, February 26, 2007

Kyle has a Med School Interview - Yea!!!

Kyle just arrived to use us as a stop-over - free hotel service & free food & parental love. He is on his way to his interview for admission to medical school in Chicago. He will stay overnight with a student at Rush University tomorrow night and then do his interviews on Wednesday. I am excited and nervous for him. I sure hope that he is accepted!

Please say a prayer, cross you fingers and toes or whatever for him!

Adventures In Traveling

I had a great visit with my children this weekend and an interesting trip home with my husband (more on this later). This is a photo of Caitlin.

We arrived in Kirksville, Missouri (Truman State University) late Friday afternoon and had a short visit our with daughter Caitlin before she had to leave for the theater. Caitlin (assistant stage manager) wasn't going to be done until midnight because there was a photo shoot after the performance and our son Kyle wasn't going to arrive from Urbana, Illinois until very late (he left after work and dinner), so we were on our own for the evening. We checked in at the hotel and then had dinner and a nice quiet evening (read that - husband Tom surfed between basketball games and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory on TV).

Saturday morning we woke up to rain - lots and lots of cold rain. The kids slept in because they were both up late. In pouring rain, we went over to pick up Kyle for lunch before Caitlin went to the theater to get ready for the performance and to pick up our tickets for the show. We had a nice visit with Kyle.

Then we went back out into the rain (I thought we were going to turn into ducks!) to see the play that Caitlin had been working on. It was The Taming of the Shrew, but set and costumed in the 1950's. It was fun and well enough done.

We had another chance to visit with Kyle while Caitlin helped tear down the set (it was the last performance). Then we went back out in the rain and picked up Caitlin and her boyfriend Gabe and went out for a wonderful dinner at an Italian restaurant. I had a wonderful Chicken Marsala, just perfect! Then it was goodbye time. Kyle was to stay the night with Caitlin and take her grocery shopping and we were leaving early to come home.

Sunday morning we woke up to find that the rain had changed to light snow. By the time we were ready to leave it had stopped. So we checked the local weather and found out about flash flood warnings across the north of Missouri. Of course, this was the route we had to take. The rivers were all way up but not yet flooding and we made it the the Mississippi River and across to Illinois fine. We got to Macomb and it was my turn to drive. Galesburg - must be lunch time. It was still my turn to drive as we headed north.

The snow started. My husband informs me that "there could be white-out conditions all the way home" across the whole state (we live near Chicago). I was ready to bang my head against the steering wheel. Yes, we were to try to make it home!

The winds start first as we head north and it's a struggle to drive as the wind hits us broadside and tries it's best to push us off the road. Finally, we are heading west with the wind coming from behind and we stop at Hillsdale. No power equals no gas AND no working toilets! (sigh) I was thankful that it was now Tom's turn to drive. The snow is coming down, blowing and not quite a white-out but bad enough. We manage to get gas at Rock Falls. So we set out again with a man behind the wheel who thinks it's just fine to drive at eighty miles an hour in the snowing, blowing, sometimes white-out! I began to wish I was driving! We did make it home in one piece, but Tom and his driving had added at least 50 gray hairs to my head and took about a year off my life.

I needed extra chocolate when I got home!

The chocolate wrapper wisdom of the day is "Spending time is a greater gift than spending money."

Friday, February 23, 2007

Off to Kirksville, Missouri

Tom and I are off to visit our daughter Caitlin in Kirksville, Missouri.

Caitlin is the assistant stage manager for the play The Taming of the Shrew that is running this week. Our son Kyle will also be joining us. He's coming from Urbana, Illinois. It will be a nice family get together.

Will blog if the opportunity presents itself. Have a good weekend, if I don't get back to this before Sunday evening.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Round Robin - Lori's Block - An Idea For Fix

Well, Allison suggested using a ribbon , but I just went through my stash and I didn't find anything that seemed to fit the block. However, I did a search of my lace and found a couple of motifs that might work. All of my lace yardage was either too large or too small to cover the gap at the top of the piece.

I pinned both up. What do you think? Being a newbie at CQ (I've only been doing this since September), I would value opinions and suggestions. So, ladies, leave me a comment!

I suppose that I could also go shopping and see what I can find. (As if I needed an excuse to hit the fabric stores!)

The chocolate wrapper shares it's wisdom..."There's a time for's called later."

Round Robin - Lori's Block

Now that Faith's Peter Rabbit block is on it's way to Rebecca, it's time to work on Lori's Cinderella block. Here's the block with Faith's work on it. Don't you just love her grandfather clock!

As you can see, it has not survived the tender mercies of the Post Office very well. One of the seams has separated (blue piece upper left) and the iron-on Cinderella has not responded well to being folded (it has cracked). I can't do anything about Cinderella, but maybe I can do something about that seam. I'll think about it for a bit.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Round Robbin - Faith's Block - Time To Pass It On

Another seam on Faith's Peter Rabbit block is completed.

A chain stitch runs along the seam. Detached chain stitches and straight stitches decorate the seam. Those yellow straight stitches aren't showing up too well in the photo. All are done using Perle Cotton 12.

I found my spider charms! So now the spider web is truly complete!

This is Faith's block as I prepare to mail it on to Rebecca. One of my chores tomorrow is to go buy some envelopes.

The chocolate wrapper speaks to us today. "Don't think about it so much." Just start stitching and let inspiration move you along!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Take A Stitch Tuesday Challenge - more Week 7

Not much time for stitching today, but I did try a little more feather stitch.

I found this feather in the beloved Treasury of Crazy Quilt Stitches by Carole Samples (page 44). I used Perle Cotton 12. I really liked the way it turned out!

"Happiness is celebrating the little things." Chocolate wrapper wisdom

Friday, February 16, 2007

Take A Stitch Tuesday Challenge - Week 7

Life has settled down and I am finally jumping in on the Take A Stitch Tuesday Challenge that I should have started in January.

I have a start on the feather stitch, but have a few things that I still want to try. The top row is feather stitch in a variegated floss (3 strands). The second row is double feather stitch. Row 3 is triple feather stitch with a variation that I found in A - Z of Embroidery Stitches. The fourth row is also from the A-Z book - a closed feather stitch.

I will also be backing up and doing the stitches from weeks 1-6.

Oh, joy! Girl Scout cookies were delivered yesterday! I just love those Tagalongs - chocolate and peanut butter heaven!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Round Robin - Faith's Block Again

I completed a seam on Faith's Peter Rabbit block today.

I did the colonial knots and the fly stitch (both in Perle Cotton 5) and then ran out of inspiration. So I put it down and walked away. I decided to check out where the TAKE A STITCH TUESDAY challenge was, since life has calmed down and I now have time to jump in. As I was reviewing the stitches covered to date, I was inspired by the detached chain stitch. So I went back to my stitching and added that in Perle Cotton 8.

Now, since I can't find where the spider charms are hiding in my stash, I have to figure out how to embroider a spider. At least some of my CQ mess is getting cleaned up and organized while I look for those spiders!

Great wisdom from the chocolate wrapper today. "Age is nothing but a number." A philosophy I can heartily agree with.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Round Robin - Faith's Block

I worked on a spider web for Faith's block yesterday, but took it out because I was not happy with it. So, today, I made a second attempt and am happier with the result.

I am new to making spider webs. So, while it's not perfect, it seems to me to be a very credible effort. Now, I know that I have some spider charms somewhere in my stash - if only I could find them! Tomorrow, on to a seam treatment.

I went to the audiologist to have my hearing aids checked out and he made a few adjustments for me. A little more noise reduction was added on one side and he says that the feedback that I was getting every time I answered the phone would be gone (he was right!). Every day sounds are still working their way into the background and the hearing aids are beginning to feel like they belong in my ears instead of being an intrusion on my person.

Of course, today it was very, very windy (25 mph with gusts to 45 mph) while I was out shoveling the snow today. I will have to work on remembering to remove the hearing aids before I go out to shovel. I had to come in (again) and take them out because the wind and the cold were causing problems (like being too loud and freezing my ears). The audiologist told me that there was nothing he could do about excessive winds - I would just have to put up with it like everyone else. Since it is still snowing, I'll be at it again tomorrow.

I must confess to having an extra piece of chocolate as a reward for shoveling the driveway. The chocolate wrapper wisdom is good advice for staying at home in the snowy weather..."Watch reruns, they replay your memories." Actually, I have been watching DVD's of Firefly (great "cowboys and bad guys among the stars" science fiction).

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Round Robin Progress

As I was looking at the Peter Rabbit block, I thought that the bunny ovals needed to be framed. So I decided to needle tat a frame for one of the ovals.

I used Perle Cotton 8. Since I was designing the frame to exactly fit the oval, it took a few tries to get the right shape, but I did it!

About my hearing aids...I have had emails and comments saying that maybe I should turn my volume down. Actually with the hearing aids set for normal hearing, if I did that, the sounds I need to hear (like conversation) would be turned down below the level I need to hear properly. This defeats the purpose of wearing hearing aids. The furnace and refrigerator need to recede into the background to the point that I will only notice them if something is wrong (like the refrigerator is making a strange noise that indicates it needs servicing). This is what all normal hearing people do - my brain just has to relearn how to do it.

The chocolate wrapper of the day is a bit self-promoting today. "Add a little sweetness to your day." Oh yes, every day, with chocolate!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Round Robin - CQforNewbies

The Crazy Quilting for Newbies Round Robin is under way. Blocks are from a fairy tale or story.

The first block that I get to work on is from Faith - The Tale of Peter Rabbit. I love all the bunnies! Faith did the silk ribbon embroidery.

My block is from The Once and Future King, or Le Morte de Arthur, or, if you prefer, Camelot. Gwenvier is the centerpiece. I can't wait to see how everyone embellishes it!

My life of chaos is settling down. I am slowly getting adjusted to my hearing aids. I have been very tired and was a bit worried until a friend pointed out that "your brain is working harder than it has in a long time and no wonder you're tired!" I guess that makes sense. Anyway, sounds like the furnace and the refrigerator are fading into the background, so I am adjusting like the audiologist said I would. It's just taking time. (sigh) I have also stopped jumping every time a new sound reaches my ears.

I couldn't wear them outside because of the cold and the wind. I have to find out if the hearing aids can be adjusted to minimize the wind. Between the cold, the snow and the wind, shoveling the driveway was a pain even after I came in and took out the hearing aids. Don't we all love sub-zero weather. I rewarded myself with an extra piece of chocolate.

"Love is always the perfect gift." The chocolate wrapper knows.