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No Wonder I Can't Catch My Breath

April 20, 2006

Where to begin? Just yesterday, I realized that J is my island of calm. Actually, she's not just MY island of calm, but I'll claim her for now.

Since jumping into the 40 Days for Others KAL (though I consider it a "C"AL - Craft-along), I have been busy knitting stocking caps for the Head Start Program. I have attempted to make a round baby blanket on the ISM. I have made one (poor lonely guy) Teddy for Charity. Yes, I know Lent is over, but now I need to finish those projects that I started, yanno? (And aren't my violets just looking GORGEOUS?)

Charity Teddy

The Jeweled Promises quilt top is all put together except for the bottom border. This thing is HUGE! I ended up adding 1" sashing between the blocks (easier than matching points, of course) and then only bordering the sides and bottom. The borders alone add over 49" to the finished size of the quilt. That plus the sashing turned the quilt into something just slightly smaller than Rhode Island.

The good news about the quilt (NOT the fact that I'm actually going to have to QUILT it and NOT the fact that it is overall a very LIGHT quilt - black puppy-butt will love that) is that when it's done, it will be big enough so that when puppy-butt is sleeping on top of the covers between Mr. W. and me, there will still be enough quilt on the sides so that our bums aren't getting breezes.

Back to the 40 Days stuff: The Vancouver quilt class has joined me in making RagDolls2Love, beginning with a sewing blitz on Saturday the 15th, then extending to last night's regularly-scheduled class time. The number of dolls just keeps growing; what we thought would be a wrap-up last night left us with almost 20 finished dolls, and probably that many again in various stages of development - PLUS a number of quilters took some home to finish and to continue making more dolls! The final (I hope) gathering of all of the finished dolls is scheduled to be two weeks from last night, when I hope we can all gather behind our mountain of dolls and get a photo taken for the local papers and community newsletters.

The Vancouver group's new series will be FAN blocks. Foundation-pieced, appliqued, pieced. Six 12" blocks, six weeks. Now all I have to do is decided on and design the patterns, make the blocks, figure yardage requirements and write the handouts. Pbbt! No problem, I have 12 whole days to do it!

In addition to the 40 Days activities, I've just finished making two wall hangings and machine quilting 5 of the 7 Dreams and Wishes quilts and their variations for the upcoming pattern publication. The last one is being bound as I type (thank you, J). The already-finished ones have been photographed for the pattern covers and dropped off at the Woodland shop for display for the upcoming classes.

Yes, I said upcoming classes. The Dreams and Wishes classes begin April 25 (3 weeks). That means that, come hell or high water, the patterns need to be published before then! And, oh yeah, I suppose getting class handouts and samples is going to be necessary, too. Fortunately, L hasn't scheduled classes right away for her patterns, so (sorry, but) I'm focusing more on the Dreams and Wishes patterns right now.

While I was basting and quilting the Dreams and Wishes quilts, for some reason I thought it was a good idea to take care of some of my other UFO's, so I basted and quilted some tablerunners.

Table Runner Montage

Oh, and the impromptu-practice-4-or-5-times-for-Easter-Vigil bell choir piece went well...

I've also been able to spend some time in the church library, cataloging the books, most of which are older than I am...

I met with a new friend this week and began discussing a new (additional) venue for teaching quilt classes.

The sun has finally come out, so Mr. W. and I have been building sore muscles re-landscaping our moonscape - you know that red lava rock that is used for landscaping? It is ALL, and I mean ALL over our lot. I move rock from one spot to another, move more rock from here to there.... plus, I've built cottage-stone retaining walls around our front flower bed to level it out a bit (we live on the side of a hill... nothing but our house is level). Two courses of stone on the east side, FIVE courses on the west side. Of course, that means that on the five-course side I need to do some major fill-in so that the plantings can be level. Again with the rock!

I got a bright idea. After digging up miles of that black landscaping fabric under the rock (eeewww), I realized that I need something to stabilize and make a layer between the rock/other fill and the actual planting soil and bark (yes, bark. Yards and yards of bark). After looking at that nasty landscaping fabric, I realized that it was just a non-biodegradable fine-mesh fabric. Weh-ell, FABRIC, you say? Ping! went the lightbulb over my head... JoAnn Fabrics. Bridal tulle or netting. 99 cents a yard, 72" wide, 40% off coupon.... Tah-dah! I priced the landscape fabric... my purchase of miles of fine net from JoAnn's came to less than 25% of the the cost of ONE package of the landscape fabric.

Guess what I'm doing today? Yup. I'm slipcovering the flowerbed!

Oh, and on the Meredith front - I have both sleeves done to about the elbows (when I ran out of the working skeins), the body done past the boobular short rows, down to where it covers my whole bra now. I am on my next-to-last skein of the yarn, though. Elann.com to the rescue! I ordered three more skeins (I figure one and a half will finish both sleeves). Of course, I couldn't order JUST three skeins of yarn... really I couldn't. I need to make it worthwhile to pay the shipping, right? I finally ordered the Connemara yarn that has been sitting in my online shopping cart for almost a month. I've already forgotten what project I ordered it for (hmmmm... maybe I oughta read my own blog? Did I mention it? Oh, hey! Bella Paquita!), but that didn't deter me from hitting that ol' Enter key anyway.

My bathroom looks like it belongs in Animal House (except, of course, the seat's down).

I have some more buttons to add and some updates to do on my side bar (---> over there!). I've been slowly but surely updating my Way-Out-Of-Date quilt pages (woo! I'm at the beginning of 2005!)

Tomorrow the water is going to be shut off in our community to check for a water main leak. Maybe Mr. W. and puppy-butt and I will grab K & J and go to the Tulip Festival.

Since I've been doing a lot of travelling, both North and South, I've really been chewing on a blog post about driving on the Interstate (yes, those are the beginning words of a song - you haven't lost it). Stay tuned...

Oh! And I've decided to post some blog-design (actually coding) stuff here. The first one will be about building those progress bars in the sidebar. After that, who knows?

It's about , , and well, you know... BABBLE!

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