Thursday, August 28, 2008

Time Crunch

Ok great. I feel like I'm going to be the last person in the swap done with their package. Stephanie over at Loft Creations already has hers done, nicely packaged, and ready to go.

I haven't started the quilt for my dad for Christmas either. Not good.

Work is crazy and this weekend is going to be as well. I'm going to the Highland Games up in Harbor Springs (MI) on Saturday (I'm not dancing, I'm not back to that point yet, but I just wanted to go) and then I'll head to my parents Sunday afternoon and spend Labor day with them.

Golfed again last night. Improved my score for 9 by 12 strokes (which is great until you do the math and realize that if I could take 12 strokes off my score for 9 and still be displeased with it that it's not a great score ....) but I did par the last hole, a long par 4, so at least it ended on a good note I suppose.

Thankfully I only work til 5 today. I can work on the bag swap items tonight and should be able to get most of it done if I can keep Zoe away from me long enough.

I just hate feeling like I have a million things to do and the fear that comes along with it of not being able to get them done ....

Monday, August 25, 2008

The long and short of it ...

Well, I'm really glad that I decided to do a prototype of what I planned on making for the Bag/Bucket swap. The pattern I bought had 3 sizes. My brain automatically went "make the biggest one!" Yeah, it's gargantuan. You could probably carry around a small child in it. But it's in these fabrics - so it'll go to my mom as part of her Christmas present. She loves Tink. No peeks though, because then it would give away part of the swap!
Here are the actual fabrics, or at least some of them, for the real bag that will be sent out. This was a challenge. I like graphic prints and jewel/dark colors and blues. Needless to say I had nothing in the fabric that I owned (which is pretty limited anyways) so I'm really hoping that the bag turns out well and that I did okay on fabric selection. I would feel so bad if she was disappointed.
As I mentioned in the last post, life around here has been pretty crazy. Zoe seems to be able to amuse herself though - I had put a movie on pause and I'm sure you're all familiar with the bouncing DVD logo ... she climbed on top of the TV and tried to catch it. Naturally, I had to take a couple pictures, though I was laughing pretty hard.

So here's the tie in with the title. I am really feeling the itch to do something with my hair. Most of my life I've had it long. I cut it pretty short last year and now it's back at the just-past-the-shoulder length. So I'm doing what any logical blogger would do - solicit opinions from complete strangers. The first picture is last fall - fairly short

The next 2 pictures are from my senior year of undergrad (2005) when I had my hair pretty long.

So what do you all think? I need to do something but can't decide what. My hair is naturally curly, so I need to figure out something that will look ok whether I straighten it or not.

So I guess that's about all that's going on around here. I've been trying to work on the Disney scrapbook a lot - so that's taken time away from sewing anything. Now I've got to focus on finishing up the bag swap and then putting together the top for my dad's Christmas quilt. All while I'm entering the busy season at work.

At least football starts soon .... my Colts play opening weekend!

Thanks for stopping by ...


Thursday, August 21, 2008


Where does the summer go? Seriously!

Sorry I haven't been around (though I don't think many people know I'm out here, so I doubt anyone's been missing me ...) This has been a really busy month.

The first weekend of August, I had to work

The second weeknd of August, I had a weekend long scrapbooking thing/long weekend visit with the parents

The third weekend of August (this coming one) I'm actually around but have a to-do list so long it actually scares me ... kind of along the lines of it's long enough that if it were a boa constrictor it could strangle me....

The last weekend/labor day weekend, I think I'm spending the weekend at a highland dance competition.

I'm also subbing on my aunt's golf league two times this month - did that last night and then will again next weekend. My score was crap and will not be published on the net. 'Nuff said!

And that's August in a nutshell. Work is crazy, but my 4% raise will finally go in to effect hopefully on the next paycheck. It's not a whole lot, but the way the economy is these days, I'll take it and be quite grateful.

Le sigh. I've been so stressed with work and everything, I may splurge and get myself a 6-pack of my favorite, Bell's Oberon - they're a Michigan brewery and Oberon is their summer beer. Perfect with an orange slice ....

I'll have some pictures up this weekend, promise!!!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Hey there strangers!

Alright - here is my finish! These were the first blocks I ever attempted and the first top I put together (the baby quilt a couple posts back got finished first due to it needing to be gifted) I used several blue tonal FQ bundles from Joann's and a couple bundles of their fat eighths in black and whites. Sizewise, it's in between a twin and a full, so it's big and I did quilt it on my machine. It was enough to never make me want to quilt on a regular sized machine again .... but I quilted the pieced blocks and the sashing in the ditch and I quilted concentric squares in the open squares and triangles.

Here is the back. In what is becoming true Abby tradition, I pieced the back on purpose. I used scraps from the front and basic black yardage. I'm not sure what batting is - Mountain Mist or something similar I got for 50% off. It didn't really crinkle that much after washing, but I think it's because the quilting is 2"-2.5" apart. The binding is also leftover blue from the front. There must have been a quilting angel with me because I finished with exactly enough - there wasn't even anything to trim once I got to the end, I just tucked it in. It was kind of a miracle. It still took like 6 or 7 movies to get all of the binding tacked on the back - am I doing something wrong? It probably shouldn't take that long ....

Now, it lives here in my living room. Yes, blue is my favorite color and it's slowly taking over my apartment as I get money to start replacing the random pieces of furniture that I have. I think it'll be happy there.

And now, for something completely different! I finished all 20 blocks for my halloween jelly roll quilt. I used the pattern Jellystone Park from Legacy Patterns. The pattern has been very easy to follow and has gone together quickly up to this point. I do have to rant though. I don't have a lot of money to spend on quilting or my other hobbies for that matter. It took a lot to get me to spend the $8 for this pattern. So, a few days ago when I was perusing various quilty blogs, I saw a beautiful top and though - wow that looks like the Jellystone Park pattern, cool! Then I read their blog - it was a free pattern from Bonnie Hunt over at Quiltville. I looked up the pattern, which she is calling Twist and Turn (or something very similar) and all of the instructions and all of the measurements are EXACTLY the same. I don't know whose came first, but there are some very clear copyright issues and I'm pretty pissed about it.


Anyways, here is my tentative layout: (kindly ignore the cat toys strewn about the floor)

So, here is my other dillemma. The blocks finish at just a bit over 11" square. The pattern calls for them to be trimmed to 10.5" square. Is this really necessary? That's going to add up to an awful lot of fabric waste. It took a lot of convincing to go ahead and buy the fancy name brand fabric and I don't want to waste it. Should I try to trim them (which I don't have a 10.5" ruler, so it'll take a lot of work to trim them properly) On the other hand, I don't want to ruin this quilt, because I really like how it's turning out and it was really expensive fabric - at least for me. Any input - I really could use some help here .... if I leave the blocks as is, what's the worst that could happen other than completely ruining my top?

And of course, I had lots of help from Zoƫ ... and by help, I mean she kept plopping down in the middle of whatever I was trying to cut and since the cuts make everything have bias edges, I couldn't just pull it out from under her because it would stretch and distort the sections. But she sure does like to assist her momma!

Well, I think that gets you all caught up. I have fabric and pattern set out for the bag swap, so I'll start on that and the pattern arrived for my dad's Christmas quilt out of the Hamptons jelly roll, so I need to get moving on that as well. I'm taking Friday and Monday off of work for a long weekend and heading to visit my parents. My mom and I are going to a Cricut swarm, even though neither of us have a Cricut yet, haha! She's going to work on making some cards, I'm going to work on my Disney scrapbook, so I'm sure we'll have plenty to do and I'm sure we'll be able to play with some of the Cricuts that will be there already (there's 60 women getting together for this) I'm sure I'll have some pictures of the festivities to share with you next week!