Wednesday, February 21, 2007

More Project Linus.....and the Dreadmill

A sweet friend of mine read my blog and sent me the following email message:

Hello Dear Heart,
I looked up Project Linus on the Internet, and there is a local chapter, so as soon as I finish the project I have underway right now, which will be in a couple of days, I am going to get in touch with the contact in my area and hopefully help out. I don't do quilting, but I can crochet and knit like crazy, and I LOVE to make baby blankets. Crazy thing, that very morning before I read your blog, I thought, "I wish there were some babies in my family or among my friends, because I like to make baby blankets." Also, I have closets full of yarn left over from other projects, and lots of it is in colors that children would love. I am not into dull, uninteresting colors myself, so don't use them much. Baby blankets go fast, so maybe I can get rid of some of the stuff that it cluttering my closets and be useful at the same time.
Love, H

How cool is that!!?? I sent a pamphlet to my dad also, as he sometimes plays with yarn too and I think he's kind of tired of knitting hats!! Maybe he'll think about crocheting a little baby blanket! I'm going to be going through the stash of quilting materials, and cutting some of the ones that neither Karene nor I will use into 6" or 7" squares, and start putting different color combinations together when I have time between projects. (Shut up. Maybe I'll manage to do it! Better to have tried and only managed a few, than not to have tried at all, right??!!)

And lookie! Here's a picture of the quilt that Karene made for Project Linus - I bugged her until she shared the picture with was soooooooooo cute. Some little one somewhere is going to love the cheerful colors and the coziness of this quilt!! (and it will last forever - she constructed it sturdily, and machine quilted it herself going around all the animals to make them stand out more, and she put the binding on using a decorative stitch on her machine!)

Is that not the cutest thing? I love it!

Got back on the horse treadmill today......and the bike also..... 5 miles (2 miles walked, 1 mile run, 2 miles biked). I am Le Tired.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Project Linus Day!

My quilting teacher, Janet Salcido, reserved the room at Leah's Fabric Gallery for a sort of quilting bee, during which anyone willing could come and help crank out lots and lots of quilts for kids! Here's a bit of information about Project Linus, which is a nationwide effort...

If you google for Project Linus, there is a wealth of information to read. These blankets go to children who are traumatized. Policemen sometimes carry them in their trunks to use when they encounter accident victims, or have to remove children from a dangerous situation, or even the child's own parents). They go to very sick children (many children receive one while being treated for serious illnesses - it gives them something warm and cuddly to cling to).

If I heard Janet correctly, an average of 1046 of these blankets, handmade in any fashion (quilted, knit, crocheted, fleeces, etc), are given to children every single day in our country. 365 days a year. That made me both sad, and glad. Its astounding so many people participate in this effort and so many blankets are distributed. Its sad that its not nearly enough.

At any rate.....I was able to participate this year, and will certainly try to next year also. Here are some pictures of the work stations we had set up in the room. Janet had some people cutting simple strips and squares that were assembled into quilt tops.

(double clicking on a picture should enlarge it)

She had some people cutting backings and layering backing, batting and quilt tops, and pinning them.

She had some (I was one) sewing around the layered and pinned quilts and then turning them inside out and zig-zagging the edge all around to catch all the layers and the turned edges and give it stability.

(there were snacks everywhere, and I was less than successful at avoiding the cookie jar someone placed just to my right on one of the few empty tables which was also used for yummy!)

(that pinkish/red/lightblue one in the center was a top someone else made that I turned and stitched the edge.)

Janet and another lady named Patti were stippling the quilts as a final step, to machine quilt them and permanently hold the layers just so.....

Every how and then, Janet would announce it was time to exercise and stretch our muscles.....

She would encourage us to "stipple in the air" which resulted in some crazy dance moves!

She cooked us a fantastic lunch with wonderful pulled pork sandwiches and slaw and goodies....(she knows how to keep us quilting! Feed us!!)

And throughout the day, women wandered in, dropping off quilt tops or completed quilts they had made for Project Linus. The pile of completed quilts grew so big they started bagging the quilts in huge lawn/leaf bags and moving them out of the quilting classroom!

Janet kept a tally - and her goal for us was to finish 40 quilts today.

When I left, they still had about an hour to go, and they were up to 46 quilts that we had completed so far, and we had a total of 91 quilts counting the ones dropped off just that day. There were more quilts yet to be counted from staff members and since this is an ongoing project, I'm sure more will come in.

I felt so good about what we were doing. We can't fix the evil or the catastrophes in the world. I can't fix much of anything, other than my response to what I encounter. But maybe we can help in some small way. Maybe we can help give a little one something to cling to, when their world shatters around them and things are confusing!

I'm so grateful to Janet for stepping up to the plate and being the messenger, the organizer and the cheerleader (and a great cook!)....

I now know how I will use a significant portion of my personal quilting stash!!

Friday, February 16, 2007

Life at the Nuthouse

I’m blogging the following conversation between me and my friend Karene as an example of Life at Chez Nuthouse (one could insert the family surname for Nuthouse)………which I sometimes state is the “lifestyle of the nonrich and demented.”

I had been away from my computer dealing with a “situation” (explanation below) and she had sent me a message with a humorous remark and then wondered if it made me mad, because I didn’t respond…

In fact, I had not received the message until rebooting my computer, which had crashed while I was handling the “situation.” Dad, this one's for you!

redheadedlady47: sorry
redheadedlady47: guess that made you mad
redheadedlady47: jk
macleodgirl: no, I am trying to reboot and get my darn computer to cooperate is all, sorry - I missed the message until it just came back up
redheadedlady47: no problem
redheadedlady47: just teasing you...
redheadedlady47: I'm feeling better now
(Editorial Note: she had an outpatient procedure done this morning and was a bit knocked out and headachey afterwards but all is better now!! Yay!)
macleodgirl: also trying to feed the darn dogz and do the changing of the guard, etc, etc and the blasted alarm just went off just now because one of the batteries in one of the sensors is apparently dead, and Max the Wuss had a panic attack (read that: new hole in carpet upstairs from him trying to dig a hiding hole) while I looked for the right battery. Once I found it, I tried to find TX1, the sensor that the alarm display was telling me was defective. What the heck is TX1....I have Fam1, Fam2 and Fam3 (family room, left to right, windows 1, 2 and 3), Dining1 (dining room), Office1 (my office) etc, etc
macleodgirl: I just don't know what a TX1 is and NEITHER DOES THE OBTUSE ALARM COMPANY
redheadedlady47: oh brother
redheadedlady47: sorry
macleodgirl: so I had to jump over the freaking dog (literally freaking) as he was digging to China, and then leap into the closet where we have the master panel and jump up on a lock box to reach said master panel.....
macleodgirl: at which point max tried to join me there, on the shelf, at the top of the closet,
redheadedlady47: !!!!
macleodgirl: which of course knocked me off the aforementioned lock box and we went down in a heap. You will remember of course, that the last time the alarm over the kitchen sink was going off in this fashion, when I climbed up onto the sink, straddling dirty dishes, he joined me there too...on top of the counter, and in the sink, trying desparately to get out the window – only I was in the way
redheadedlady47: omg
macleodgirl: and after he covered me with about a dozen nervous licks and I managed to get up off the floor and toss him out of the closet
redheadedlady47: (sigh)
macleodgirl: then I climbed back on the lock box and reached on the shelf and turned off the ENTIRE ALARM SYSTEM. Silence was indeed golden.
redheadedlady47: poor Max
macleodgirl: and then I fought my way back out the door of the closet
macleodgirl: and managed to get back in my office, with him on the outside of the door I closed on my way in
macleodgirl: this was of course, after I fell in the half dug hole to China en route to the office
redheadedlady47: !!!
macleodgirl: and then found the number for the alarm company
macleodgirl: and called them and said PLEASE STOP THE COPS
macleodgirl: and although they were already rolling my way (music of Jaws soundtrack in background)
macleodgirl: she sent the cops home. Thank goodness. $100.00 false alarm charge diverted.
macleodgirl: and then my computer crashed....
macleodgirl: but all is well now. I’m sure Mr. B will just pop the right battery in the right sensor and I’ll feel extremely stupid… but everything is fine
macleodgirl: except I'm digging in the back of drawer 2 of my filing cabinet for that last hidden bottle of wine
macleodgirl: oops,
macleodgirl: whoopsie
macleodgirl: can't do that - I'm going to an NA meeting tonight with Laurie to see Milton take his 18 year chip…
macleodgirl: that would never do.
redheadedlady47: ok
macleodgirl: ok.
redheadedlady47: ok
macleodgirl: ok, i'm done
redheadedlady47: you made your point
macleodgirl: isn't life at Chez Bury just "it"????
macleodgirl: a lifestyle of the nonrich and demented....
redheadedlady47: yep
macleodgirl: teehee – well I must go get ready for said NA meeting…
redheadedlady47: cu
macleodgirl: bye.....

I need a vacation.

Laurie is home!

Laurie Lu Lovebucket has returned! Very tired, very happy, and very much wanting to travel a LOT MORE!!! She had such a good time! Here are a few of her pictures (she took about 160!!)
If you double click on the pix, they should enlarge....

Laurie in front of Notre Dame........
(please to notice the ear-to-ear smile!) (and she wore the black eyelash scarf I knit her last year [grin!] )

Laurie in front of the Louvre......

Laurie in her cute little Paris coat! "All the girls in Paris were wearing these" she just had to have one! Here she is standing in front of her little Paris hotel.....

And here she is at the Coliseum in Rome.....

Now its back to the grindstone.....she is taking three classes this semester, and working hard at Coco's....

But she's already planning to start saving for a trip next year!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Update from Rome....

We heard from our world traveler this morning. Laurie called at the end of her day of hiking around Rome and surrounding areas, which was also the beginning of our day....She was so excited to tell us she had seen the coliseum, the Parthenon, the Sistine Chapel and other beautiful areas of the Vatican......

Evidently traveling agrees with I hung up downstairs, I could hear her telling her sister upstairs that she wanted to go with her and tour England and Scotland next year....

Karen would certainly be interested in that! She has long dreamed of seeing Dunvegan, the castle of our MacLeod Clan.

Me? I'd love to see Dunvegan.....but I'd be happy to have a weekend in the mountains! Or at the beach! I think they get the "wanderlust" from their grandparents on both sides!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

A bit of progress....

Yay! Quilting class this afternoon! My 2.5 hours each week where I "escape" and just listen to the bantering and joking of the women around me, and soak up the colors and textures and projects that everyone is doing. I listen to all the hints our Teacher Extraordinaire (the super special Janet Salcido) gives us....

And every now and then I finish a quilt top....

Today, I finished Karen's quilt top made in the Take Five pattern using all Asian materials.

Next, I get to sandwich it with backing and batting, and machine quilt it - and then the darker blue print will be used also to bind it. Another F.O. soon!! (finished object)

This is the same pattern my transcriptionists and I used to make our Deborah's love blanky to use as she goes through chemotherapy and radiation......

The little yellow blob is a card that everyone signed....We sent kits to transcriptionists and friends in Weatherford, Texas; New Bern, North Carolina; Perris, California; and Yorba Linda, California! After the finished blocks came back, Karene and I sewed them into strips and then the rows were joined, the backing (pink for breast cancer awareness) and batting and quilt top were layered and I machine quilted it....... :)

Hmmmm.....I just looked at the calendar. Its February 11......I don't think this is going to happen.

Still, looking at the positive, its better than having not walked at all!!

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Flight for Paris, now boarding!

She's packed.....

Passport - check! Travelers' Checks - Yep! Cozy coat from Johnny, gloves, hat - Yes! (after all, its supposed to snow a bit!!)

Hugs for Sadi!

Bags to the car.....

And she's off to Paris and Rome with Kim (her sponsor and dear friend) for nine days!

Sadi and I, we're planning to go on some walks and miss our Laurie, together!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Oh well.

Progress, up until a week ago. Then life conspired to get in the way. Progress will resume. Just not sure when. :(