Monday, November 30, 2009

Cyber Monday

I did my part to stimulate the economy! I was blessed to chat with my darling daughter last night before retiring and again this morning when I arose.  While we were discussing such important topics as Jacob's well developed biceps and renaming the pets (meet Yappy McGraybutt), I was perusing the cyber Monday ads.  I avoided Fabric Mart and some of the other embroidery sites, but Shopper's Rule had a deal that I simply could not resist.  Machine embroidery takes a lot of thread to do detailed designs and while I try to replace colors as I use them, the complete set of Polystar thread I receive for my birthday 3 years ago is starting to dwindle.  Shopper's Rule is an interesting site that has regular email sales and they have a feature where you can make offers on products.  I don't think I have ever taken advantage of that, but I have bought various things over the years.  I bought my favorite duck bill applique scissors for under $6.00 and bought rolls and rolls of H20 gone for making FSL.  Today's sale was just what I'd been watching for...Robison Anton mini-king spool set of 100 for $53.86!!!  This set normally sells for $299.00!!! I jumped right on that! RA is about the best you can buy for embroidery and my machine loves it!!!  I also have some designs I would like to pick up at Urban Threads, but that sale goes on til Christmas, so there is no rush. So what bargains did you all find this weekend?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

All Quiet Now...

The house is very very quiet now...the kids have gone home and I have laundry to do and dishes to wash and good times to warm my heart til Thursday when they come back...It's Civil war baby...Ducks vs. Beavers and the winner goes to the Rose Bowl...I really don't care who wins (don't tell Trav that), but I love to mix it up because they all get so serious about it.  It's football man! It's not like it's sewing or anything!!!  Hehehehe! I tickle myself!  In unrelated news, I am happy to report that I finally made it to New Moon...LOVED IT!!!  A whole bunch of deliciousness!!!  Can't wait to go again!!!  The black wool coat is almost done...maybe tomorrow and I plan to sew up one of the Missoni knits in the black, red and grey colorway for the Vegas wardrobe will be based in those colors...excitement rising...more to come...

Saturday, November 28, 2009

The Joy of Babies

We have been blessed with the company of our good friends Travis and Annie and their two children for the holiday weekend.  I really enjoy having them around and the hustle and bustle that children bring.  I also enjoy my peace and quiet, but I realize how brief these visits are and that soon the house will return to the gentle rhythm of two old souls (and a posse of pets).  Annie's Grandma gave her an old serger that we were trying to resurrect last night and of course the kids wanted Mama at that very moment ( all know what I mean!!!).  The men folk were watching football (arrrr, arrrr, arrrr) and not really much help (sorry guys).  Usually Tom is the baby whisperer and he can put any little one to sleep, but Chloe was not having it last night.  Annie took Hayden upstairs to settle him into bed and I finally abandoned the serger to collect Chloe.  I hadn't got to spend too much time with her yesterday because she was velcroed to Tom most of the evening, so I was happy to do the baby waltz with her.  She snuggled right in and started to relax when our hearts found a symbiotic rhythm.  Pretty soon she was asleep too and Annie was able to put her to bed. I love that...that special quiet time...everything else can wait...babies don't keep.

Friday, November 27, 2009

For those who couldn't be with us...

Thanksgiving is for family and unfortunately not everyone can be together at the holidays.  Ma got out the plates and silverware and I set the table.  When we all gathered around the table we realized that we had set one extra place.  I think it was intentional for those loved ones that couldn't be with us.  So there's your place at the table...right next to Ma/Grandma!  We love you all and missed you!  May your holiday be filled with love and laughter

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Does anyone know where you can buy that?  I feel like a slug today...moving really slow, but at least moving! Did the Thanksgiving grocery shopping and finished the you think anyone will notice if I go back to bed? Yeah...probably.  Some cleaning to do and should think about starting on those pies!  Maybe just a quick nap!  If I don't post again for a few days, I want to wish all my blogfriends a happy Thanksgiving.  I am sew very grateful for all of you! Thanks for a hanging with me!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Hard head

That's what I have...a hard head.  My MIL said we could come for Thanksgiving if I bring her pies, pies, pies and an ironing board.  No really, she did concede that we could come if we didn't bring those things, but they would be welcome.  An ironing board, you question??? Ma emailed me a while back asking me to BOLO for an ironing board as hers had died and she didn't want to buy one of those cheesy new ones that cost a fortune and are flimsy light weight.  We are a bit old school when it comes to boards and I knew what she was wanting.  When Tom remodeled an extra bedroom to my sewing studio, he installed an in-wall ironing unit that I found at a garage sale for a song (and I sang too when I found it!), so I had relegated my much used, much loved ironing board to the garage, just in case I wanted to iron downstairs or something.  So when she asked, I was happy to report that I had the perfect ironing board for her.  Flash forward to today...I decided that a good DIL would make a new cover before taking antique ironing board to MIL.  I pulled it out, set it up and SPROING!!! The pin that held the gizmo that made the board stay upright broke! Oh horrors! So as I am trying to figure out what broke and how to fix it, I got hit in the head by the free falling legs.  Not once...not twice...about half a dozen times before I figured out how to stop getting hit in the head!  (Maybe the first blow made me a little confused...who knows???)  The good news is that I figured it out...with a few items from Tom's shop I MacGyvered the board back to it's fabulous functional form.  Can't have Ma getting whacked in the head, now can we?  Gotta run...dinner to drop off at the firehouse and then it's on to work...TGIF for me!!!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Working Like a Dog!!!

This morning Tom and I had an unexpected date.  We stayed up late last night after I got home from work and watched SNL. This is highly unusual for a couple of old farts like us, but Tom was off today and I didn't need to go to work till after noon, so we just went with it. We were able to sleep in a little late.  Of course, SOMEONE had to go to the bathroom at the usual time because they get all freaky if anything is different in their little world, even though they did get a potty break when we got ready for bed!  I was able to go back to bed for an hour or so before the rest of the herd became restless!  Then it was coffee and the Sunday paper, where Tom discovered that Best Buy had a super buy on TomTom navigation systems and a slim Kodak digital camera that I have been wanting before our trip to Vegas. So we headed to Gresham for breakfast at the Wildwood Cafe (mmm...huckleberry pancakes!) and then to Best Buy.  We got the last camera (sorry whoever came later) and the sales guy was really impressed at the price of the TomTom (so was Tom!).  So we both got our Christmas present early and no need to go out shopping on Black Friday!  I have to work days on Friday anyway and Annie, Trav and the kids are coming to spend the weekend, so who wants to shop??? (or work for that matter?)  Anyway, I brought my camera to work and am really working like a dog!!!  Here's Avis, my boss' dog with a little help from my friend Krystin to pose her.  She likes her butt scratched (Avis...not Krystin in case you're confused!) and so it's hard to get her picture.  

Here's the real boss of the office...Jo likes to think he's in charge and he usually is. He's got everyone trained to meet his every need.  He looks all sweet and innocent but he takes all the bones away from poor Avis and when Jo arrives in the office this is where Avis retreats:

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The Long and Winding Road

That leads back home...these double shifts kick my butt, but I sure enjoy 3 days off a week! I did manage to sneak some sewing related shopping in on my lunch break.  JoAnn's had McCall's patterns on sale for $1.99, so I picked up M5932.  I have a couple Missoni type knits that are screaming tunic to me.  It must be the year of the tunic because I find myself gravitating to that look.  My friend Erin had the cutest long sweatshirt on...she said it was billed as a dress...NOT!!! I managed to finish up the Purell cases last night, at least enough to fill with the sanitizer I had on hand.  Some of the students expressed an interest in having one, so I may need to do some more.  The Christmas boxes to the kids went out yesterday, so virtually I am done with Christmas creating (famous last words).  In unrelated news, while I was sewing last night I heard on GAC that George Strait was going on tour with Reba...sweet!!!  Gentleman George is on my Must.See.Before.I.Die list and glory be...he's coming to the Rose Garden on March 26...We are soooo there!  Merry Christmas and Happy Birthday to me!!!


My heart is full today...I am very thankful for my family and friends and that I have a job working with people who inspire me...also thankful to be feeling better and able to go to work.  Sometimes you just gotta sing praises!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Getting there...

I'm not gravely ill, but I don't feel like dancing a jig either, so today will be low key.  I was really hoping to go catch New Moon, but I don't know if hanging out in a crowded movie theater is in my best interest right now (or the best interest of the other folks going to enjoy the show)  Sara loved it...posting on FB as the movie started and evidently Kaitie spotted license plates from home (Alaska is home for Kaitie), so she was thrilled.  I'm sure it will be showing for awhile, so I can catch it when I am feeling better.  I sewed for a couple hours yesterday and that knocked my socks off, so I ended up back in the recliner.  I watched "Valentino, the Last Emperor" and it was very good.  Quite an eye opener into haute couture.  I found it interesting in the beginning they were talking about all the seamstresses that work for him and that they had one sewing machine, but nobody used it.  All that fabulosity sewn by hand?  Wow!  Of course Project Runway concluded last night.  I was disappointed that Carol Hannah did not win.  I liked her collection best of all, but Irina's did have a common thread.  I thought her collection was too dark and depressing in my humble opinion.  Of course I am not the last word in fashion obviously, so my vote didn't count, but variety makes the world go 'round...well, I think I will try to get the advent boxes out to the kids this morning and maybe sweep the floor if my energy allows.  It's back to work tomorrow, so I need to be well rested!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thanks for the Well Wishes

I woke up feeling better today, but still plan to take it easy.  There is a Project Runway marathon leading up to the finale tonight, so that will be my background for a little sewing and if I start to fade I can retreat back to the recliner and enjoy.  I hope to go catch New Moon tomorrow if I am back up to speed.  Tom was like "I thought we were going to go together???", but our schedules don't jive until sometime next week.  He finally conceded that I probably would want to see it again, so it would be okay if I went tomorrow.  Like I needed permission!!!  Too funny!!! I'm off to the studio to get some work done...more later!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Sick Day

My first day off and I woke up with a massive headache and nausea!  Why does this happen on my time!  A day of Nat Geo in the recliner and some TLC from my wonderful hubby and I am starting to feel better.  Here's hoping for a more productive day tomorrow!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Is it Friday yet?

Nope! It's Thursday, at least in my work week.  Looking forward to a few days off...this working 5 days in a row is for the birds (LOL!) I did finish a few Purell cases this morning and all of the fabric is pressed and ready for the embroidery machine.  I need to purchase some more velcro tomorrow so the construction line can continue.  I haven't touched the coat since last week, and there is a wool skirt sitting on the chair ready to stitch. What can I say? I get easily distracted.  What's been distracting me lately is that in 3 weeks we are going to Vegas for some R&R! I'm not much of a gambler (too cheap), but I do love to wander around and look at all the casinos and attractions.  The Titanic exhibit is going on down there...I hope we get time to take that in.  Must get the coat done before we go...that would be perfect!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

No Sew Sunday

No sewing done today, but some sewing prep did happen.  I dug through my quilt scrap tote where all the smaller bits and FQs are stored and pulled some interesting fabrics to make some more Purell cases.  I cut out enough to do 14 more (the amount of bottles I have left).  Papa Jim and Mama Lou stopped by with Sophie the dog (always a pleasure!).  Sophie sent the Chief into hiding, but Jo and Soph were happy to see each other.  Louise said the snow has come to stay in LaPine and makes me long to be retired and there, but unfortunately I will have to work a few more years...sigh...unless of course I win the lottery...I'll let you all know when that happens, but for now...I owe, I off to work I go!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I heart Maggy London and Moose B Stitching!!!

Here I am wearing the Maggy London design Butterick 4914.  This dress practically made itself!  It was super easy without looking super easy.  I was a little hesitant because I thought the ruching would be difficult, but it couldn't be farther from the truth!  Careful gathering and basting to the foundation piece made for an interesting and flattering waistline.  This pattern is a definite keeper and when this one is gone, I'm sure there will be another to take it's place.  The fabric was a fine piece of jersey knit from Trendy Fabrics.  Red and Black are always welcome in my closet and I may take this dress with me to Vegas.

I went to the firehouse to make dinner for the guys after work today.  Of course they got a call 5 minutes before dinner was ready...sigh...such is the life of a fireman's wife!  They were recalled 20 minutes later, so dinner was fine.  I came home and took care of all my chores before heading into the studio to try out the Moose B Stitching in the hoop Purell cases.  They stitch even faster than I thought...a total of 4 minutes stitching time if you stitched straight through.   Of course there is a lot of stop and start as the velcro is appliqued on and there are 3 pieces of fabric involved in the construction.  I was very impressed with the thoroughness of the instructions.  I had always admired the set at the Moose B Stitching site, but never had bought any.  I don't know why I waited so long! The case turned out great without any problems.  I may even reach my goal of Christmas presents finished before Thanksgiving.  That's another thing to be thankful for!  I think I will call it a night and snuggle up with a good book and a cup of tea.

Date Night Report

Yes Gwen, we were home by 10:00!!! Actually we were home before 7:30.  We went to dinner at a local chinese place we love and had a nice meal, stopped at the post office to check the mail and then went home.  Pretty boring stuff, huh?  It was nice to get in our comfy clothes and enjoy a little GAC before Law and Order came on.  The pets also served as live entertainment.  The Chief hid under a pile of pillows and swatted Jo when he got close.  I am so my Mother!!! :)  We watched the new Blake Shelton video "Hillbilly Bone" which is a duet he did with my man Trace.  Can't go wrong with that combo, so I had to go online and get the ringtone, which is something I never do...I pretty much repel cell phone technology.  I'm not a texter by any means and so I struggled with downloading the ringtone, so my hero came to my rescue again.  So I have a cool new ringtone on my cell.  Call me!  I didn't get any work done on my coat last night (because that wouldn't be very partner like on date night!), but I did review the directions for a new in the hoop project I purchased from Moose B Stitching for a keychain Purell case.  I had designed a pattern to make my own, but in the hoop patterns on the embroidery machine are so quick and easy, so I took the easy way out.  I already had an in the hoop tissue case from Embroidery Library. I plan to make at least 15, so once I get in a rhythm it should go quickly.  Hopefully I will have some done to photograph tonight.  I am wearing my Maggy London dress today and will get pics when I get home.  I wore it with black boots for a more casual look, but styled differently it would make a great dinner dress. More later...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Date Night!!!

Whoo-hoo!!!  It's date night!!!  My Hunny has been busy...playing and working...we are going on a date tonight.  It was funny...we were talking at the station the other night about all that has been keeping us apart later and we decided to "have a date night" on Friday.  One of our younger friends, who is a volunteer, overheard our conversation and wrinkled up his face and said "Married people don't least each other!!!" Tom exclaimed "They do if they want to stay happily married!" Now I need to figure out what I want to do...that should carry me through my Monday workday on Friday the 13th!  In sewing news, I whipped myself up a quick pillow case last night...JoAnn's had some hot firemen fabric in the clearance...(yeah, I ended up there again...different JoAnn's) with 50% off it was only $2.00!!!  It makes me smile!  The gals at the cutting table said I should make one for wouldn't even make it out of the house!  The guys at the firehouse would never let him live it down!  I also worked on my wool coat.  It will be an easy project to complete, but I am taking my time as it is a garment that I hope to wear for a long time.  Question: What is the oldest garment in your wardrobe that you still wear?  I think mine is a bathrobe I have had for almost 30 years.  It is silky with a terry lining and has bears all over it. I thought it a little garish when I bought it and it still is a little out there, but I love it!  I mentioned maybe getting rid of it and Tom said "No, you better keep it!" Well, better get this party started...Have a happy and safe Friday the 13th!
picture shamelessly borrowed from my friend Annie...taken at Annie and Trav's wedding!

Thursday, November 12, 2009


I was a busy girl yesterday and made some "interesting" stuff. Disclaimer: Don't read on if you are easily offended or an impressionable young person Oh yeah, don't look if your name is Bryce (not that I think he is a regular reader of my blog). Sara, you can look, but only if you promise not to tell...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I'm one of "THOSE" people...

Yeah, I admit it...I'm a Twilight nerd. As I sit here in my Twilight T-shirt admiring my New Moon blog wallpaper and my Team Edward blinkie...oh yeah...I got it bad. Didn't plan on it...just thought I would give the first book a read to see what all the fuss was about. Then I was hooked by the characters and wanted to know more about their story...what happens next... I don't believe I'll make the midnight opener of New Moon (um, I want to be awake to enjoy the movie!), but I definitely will see it sooner rather than later! Today is my "Saturday" and my hero is on duty, so the day is ripe with possibilities. Exercise is the first order of the day and then the sewing studio will be open for business. Don't you love it when your brain is swirling with projects? The only problem is, where to start!!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Such a beautiful word! I haven't posted in awhile about my commitment to fitness, but alas, I have not fallen off the wagon. I have continued to dedicate at least 30 minutes per day to exercise. Most days it is either the treadmill or a fitness video...on days I work a double I have to be a little more creative (Yeah, I'm the crazy loon dancing around the office) This commitment is starting to pay off. I knew quietly that I have been losing weight over the past few weeks, but it's getting to the point where people are asking "Have you lost weight?" It's nice to say "Well, yes I have, thanks for noticing." While this was not the driving motivation behind this lifestyle shift, it is a nice side effect. I'm hoping for a downward trend in my LDL so my cardiologist won't suggest medication. The only downturn in this weight loss thing will be that I may have to make some new clothes...oooh...hurt me!!!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Monday, Monday...

Okay all you baby boomers...I know that just conjured up the Mamas and the Papas for you...not the ala Mackenzie Phillips, ooh, John Phillips is a perv vibe, but the pleasant folksy song! I apologize...I don't know where that came from...probably staying up too late last night! My Hunny is still on his mini vacay in the sticks, so I have been creating til I can't keep my eyes open! No sewing yesterday, but I did produce something special! Can't elaborate right now, as it's a Christmas surprise! I heart Christmas! There were a few years when I was depressed and...not so much, but it's been pretty darn special for quite some time now! I also made it to JoAnn's yesterday and scored on the Simplicity patterns (yes Punkin, I got quite a few on your list for you!) and only picked up one piece of fabric off the clearance racks. It always gets me when they offer an extra 50% off...I found a lovely burgundy stretch lace that was $1.00 per yard with the discount. I knew I had the perfect match in a knit in the stash to line it for a rocking Tshirt, so it should be showing at a cutting table real soon! Today is a clean the birdcage, pick up the house type day since I find myself with an unusual Monday off. I am working another double tomorrow and then am off again. Almost like a fireman's schedule with the exception that I get to come home and sleep in my own bed! I could get used to this (as long as I was on the same schedule as Tom!!!) Sorry for the lack of pictures lately. Tom took the camera to "shoot" elk, and I suppose I could dig out the old camera if the batteries were still kicking, but nah...think I'll just wait. Well, I'm off to see what the day might bring...hope you all have a pleasant Monday, Monday!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Forward Progress

Yesterday afternoon I made excellent progress on the advent stocking presents. I need to start wrapping because I think Sara is done and Bryce is close. I embroidered my little heart out while working on some UFO's that have been cut out for weeks. I other people work on one project at a time, or do they use the assembly line process like me? I like to cut out a couple things in like colors (to minimize serger thread color changes) while watching a movie or sporting event and then constructing them while watching a movie or sporting event...or listening to music...that works too! I'm almost ready to cut out some more projects. I'm thinking a knit top-a-rama is in order...or maybe some sweaters. Sunday is mine, so let's spend it sewing!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Looks like We Made it...

Channeling Barry Manilow, you say? No...that title just popped in my head when I woke up this morning and realized I made it through a particularly LONG work week and today is the first day of my weekend! Tom came home from vacay and went back to work a day early, which turned into a 48 for him, so I am extremely excited to spend today with him before he goes back on shift tomorrow and leaves for another brief vacay on Friday. Firemen have the best schedules! Last night while Tom was at the firehouse, I was able to finish my Maggie London dress, save for the hem and sleeve finish. I will coverstitch those later today or tomorrow. Valentine is wearing it now, giving the hem a chance to hang so it will be perfect. This was a lesson in patience. I had hoped to finish it yesterday morning and wear it to work. I was doing fine until the serger tension went a little wonky after going over a bulky seam...Ugh!!! I re-threaded, adjusted and did everything I knew to fix the tension, but to no avail. I get really anxious when one of my babies has a problem, so I left for work with a heavy heart and an uninspired outfit that I threw on at the last minute. It's funny how you forget the basics when you're in a hurry! I did a little research on my break at a Yahoo Babylock serger group I belong to and it was a light bulb moment! I had threaded with the presser foot down! Came home, re-threaded the proper way and guess what? Perfect stitch! Sometimes I just need to head slap myself! So I finished the side seams, tried it on and it's perfect, so I went to bed with a happy heart! The moral of the story...when things don't seem to be going right, step back and gain fresh perspective and the try, try again. Pictures of the Maggie London dress to follow later. Happy Wednesday everyone...I'm off to spend it with my man!

Monday, November 2, 2009

A day without sewing...

Is like a day at work...blech! Make that a double and it's boo! blech!!! But wait...I did manage to sneak some sewing in, even if it is mundane recovering of a wedge pillow with an old sheet that Lily gave me. Our wedge pillow that we have for positioning patients had a sorry excuse for a cover and when I pulled it out of the cupboard I was reminded that I meant to recover it when I had time. Enter double shift and staying on campus all day allowed me to get this done in between doing administrative duties that also get neglected when we are busy with class. Lily was so gracious to give me an old sheet...she had more and I quipped maybe I would whip up a new outfit while I was at it! No new outfit, but I did have to repair Jo's green kitty toy that he decided he needed to eviscerate! He gets pretty bored on double days! We never made it for a walk during our break, so the poor guy was pretty bummed! Such is the life of a working dog! I did get a chance to talk sewing with my lovely daughter this morning. JoAnn's has Simplicity patterns going on sale for a buck, so she picked out her faves for me to pick up for's funny we picked out some of the same patterns...what can I say...the kid has good taste! Actually I learn alot about current trends from her...she helps keep me young! Well the night is almost done and I'm whipped...One more day and my weekend will be here! Yahoo!!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Whoever took my Mojo...I want it back!!!

A lazy Sunday morning...that's the holdover from a lazy Saturday night. I don't know what has zapped my energy...I'm not sick, but I just feel exhausted. I made it through work and stopped at the store to get milk for my Hunny who is coming home today! Popped into the library to return some items due this week and pick up a reserve I had waiting for me. Took the detour route home because Broadway was closed for Trick or Treating. Fed all the animals, heated up a bowl of soup for me and then parked in the recliner with a book and the World Series to watch. I drifted in and out of conciousness until I decided I'd better move it on up to bed so I didn't have a backache in the morning. Maybe if I do a little exercise my blood will get pumping and I'll feel like doing something! I hope so...a little over 4 hours I have to report to work!

Project Dress a Girl

For the past couple of years, I have made dresses for Project Dress a Girl Around the World, in part thanks to the campaign launched by Mari...