Thursday, December 31, 2009

Celebration

I feel as though I should celebrate the marvels presented to me in 2009. And thus, a celebration list is born.

:: I learned a little about stain glass.

:: I celebrated another successful transition of leadership for my country. It amazes me each time.

:: I've cooked and baked more than ever before. It could easily become a passion.

:: I visited the great cities of Chicago, Denver, Jacksonville, Buffalo, Niagara Falls, Washington DC, and NYC.

:: I opened my Etsy store.

:: I got a compliment on a dress I made by a staff member at Ann Taylor Loft.

:: I saw the musical Chicago twice. And attended Easter service at the National Cathedral.

:: I attended the Grand Prix at the Devon Horse Show.

:: I made three new quilts and worked on a fourth.

:: I made new friends.

:: I reupholstered a chair. (This statement still amazes me.)

:: I've actually been so pleased with photos I've taken that I've framed them and placed them in my apartment.

:: I've watched a good friend get married to a wonderful man.

:: I did my first craft show.

What a wonderful year: 20o9! May 2010 offer a heaping serving of additional blessings!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Flashback

I was cleaning through old letters and photos today and thought I'd share a couple of photos from my college years. I love looking at old photos and thinking about how much has changed since then and how wonderful that time was!
My friend Katie and me at a sorority banquet in 1996.

In my off-campus apartment in 1995-96. Loved that apartment even though everything was crooked.


Graduation Day: I'm on the far right. M&M are my mom and stepfather.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Savoring

I just have a few more days of Savor the Possibilities being the theme for the year. As I move forward through the rest of 2009, I'm thinking about the remaining things I can savor....
  • time with family and friends for the holidays
  • crafting time upon my return to Philly
  • good Buffalo foods... yum!
  • the strength I have
  • vacation from work for the next week or so
  • the feel of chapstick on chapped lips (I'm simple, what can I say?)
  • my home, as it is comfortable and a comfort to me
  • my little love Rosy
  • a balanced checkbook that doesn't leave me crying
  • the Glee soundtracks (man, I love that show!)
  • melting snow
What from 2009 are you savoring most?

Monday, December 21, 2009

2010 Goals

I've been thinking a little bit about goals for 2010. What should I be striving for? What's my theme? What am I motivated to accomplish? They are tough questions to answer. Yet, they are easy at the same time. Right now, I'm thinking my goals are:
  1. Make a larger sized quilt.
  2. Take the glass blowing class through my local learning tree. I think this could be a fun experience and something totally different than my other crafts.
  3. Do another (successful!) craft show. I like preparing, laying out the table, connecting with customers and whatnot.
  4. Find a new challenge in my professional job. I've been doing the same thing for over four years, with the only big addition being editing a webpage (great new challenge). I need to find new things to keep my mind active and think in a different way.
  5. Continue dating.
  6. Read more! Knit more too.
  7. Exercise more. I've gotten lax in the last couple of months and need to get myself back on track.
  8. Move closer to buying my own home. Whether that is adding to savings or consulting a realtor is up for grabs.
As for the theme, it was suggested that I use love (by this lovely lady). I adapted it a bit to "Surround Yourself with Love." That's what 2010 will be: my opportunity to do what I love, take care of myself, challenge myself, enjoy family and friends and maybe even meet someone to love.

What do you hope to accomplish in 2010?

Suggestion for Philadelphia

Philadelphia really needs to invest in one of those snow melty machines that Buffalo borrowed from Toronto a few years ago (and by few I mean like ten) when we got hammered there. Really. Because the streets are crazy slushy... which is what happens when you don't plow 2 feet of snow and instead let people drive over it. And, the piles of snow all over the place are problematic for driving or walking. 'Cause you know, when my city taxes are more than my state taxes, I expect a certain level of service. (I'm high maintanence like that.) So, let's melt the stuff and send it into the sewer system. Yep, that's my thought for today. In happy news, the on-street parking spot I dug out yesterday was waiting for me when I got home from work tonight. Yay!

Now, back to my regularly scheduled sewing and knitting!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Toffee Treats

Today, I used this caramel recipe to make some treats as my colleague's holiday gifts. I cooked it about as long as Emily said but ended up with toffee, not caramel. It's darn delicious toffee though (Really sugar, butter and heavy cream... can you go wrong?). I packaged the pieces up and have everything set to take in tomorrow and drop off. I had these little flower pot thingies, originally from Ikea, that a neighbor had left by the mailboxes downstairs. They were the perfect little container for a couple of colleague's toffee. As I only had two, someone gets a bag instead (and an extra piece!). It was an easy recipe and a fun snow day #2 activity.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Snow Day Saturday

They said it was going to be a lot of snow. I doubted. Philadelphia typically overreacts. This time, it actually is a nice, big, wonderful snowfall.
Unfortunately, it isn't the packing variety. But, Rosy and I did take a nice long walk.
Since then, I've been baking cookies, making soup, sewing and watching a movie. What a wonderful snow day! Thank you Mother Nature!

ETA: The snow is now higher than Rosy is tall! :-)

A Legacy Forward

As I sat on my couch this morning, knitting and watching the snow pile up outside, I thought about my plans for today. I anticipate baking, sewing and knitting.... avoiding the cold and snow except when Rosy needs to go out. And, my thoughts turned to how these activities tie me to generations of women past. For years and years, women have sat by the fire in the winter and created. And, although the fire might be missing, how wonderful it is to share their legacy.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Goal Setting, Goal Accomplishing?

Last year, towards the end of December, I set goals for 2009. Today, I was wondering how I did with those goals. My goals were:
  • Make another quilt. Done and done! I've made two baby quilts and a bunch of other quilted items.
  • Eat more veggies. Pretty good. I've have to change this into fruit/veggies but overall I've been doing decent.
  • Save about $250/month to put towards a new computer as my little Mac is getting older. Saving was so so what with A LOT of car repairs but I did manage to get a new computer. More saving in 2010? Yes please!
  • Refinish a piece of furniture. Although not my intention, I think the chair I reupholstered qualifies for this one. I'm thinking refinishing some kitchen chairs will be on the docket for 2010.
  • Continue dating and don't get discouraged. I've been doing a bit of match.com dating - some good, some bad. But, at least, I'm out there!
  • Volunteer more locally. This is so so... I've done a bit of legwork but haven't found the right volunteer opportunity for me yet.
This has me thinking about goals for 2010. What should I take on? And, what should be my theme?

Monday, December 14, 2009

I Am a Sucker... and I Wouldn't Have It Any Other Way

On the way home from walking Rosy today, we encountered this love. He's sweet, although skiddish around people. He's not fixed and it a BIG humper. He also had no collar. I enlisted a neighbor and now we are trying to find him a home.




I'm glad I'm not the type of person who could leave him on the street, as it is busy and he easily could be hit. Now, hopefully we can find him a loving place to live!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Craft Show Tribulations

The craft show was fun although the traffic was horrendous! Between my friend and me, we sold one item. For $5. We didn't even cover the cost of our table. And that was the common issue among the other vendors we spoke with. I don't think they advertised as much as they should have.... The good news, however, is that we had a good time talking, knitting and catching up. And, we packed up early so we could go pick up cupcakes. (Priorities, right?) I wish it had been a better sale but overall, I'd mark it as an enjoyable time. Now, off to add my additional stock to the Etsy store!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Why I've Been MIA

A week later and here I am again.... I was away in Jacksonville, FL for a conference. It was great although wow, being gone right before a craft show is rough! I got back yesterday afternoon and was soooo tired that all I could do was sleep. Last night, after a good 2 hour nap, I priced all my goods. Today, I added two little items to my stock and packed everything in my roller suitcase. I think I'm all set! Wish my luck tomorrow.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

More Tag Blankets!

I finished these two tag baby blankets tonight to add to the craft show stock. I'm really pleased with how they came out... love that patchwork. I'm thinking these will be about $15 to $18. Yay for stock... and sewing!!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

My First Pony...er, Craft Show

I'm pretty excited. As of late this afternoon, I'm signed up for my very first craft show! I'm doing it with my friend and we will have (hopefully, if I can secure the 2nd table) two 4 foot tables. Between us, we have knit items, baby quilts, jewelry and paintings.

I'm planning on re-reading through Amy's suggestions, but I welcome additional thoughts, suggestions and ideas. The plan right now if doing some things that add dimension to the table... getting items up off the table a bit. However, I have limited time to get all of the table supplies, since I'm going to a conference just before the craft show. And, right now I'm more focused on adding some items to the stash!

Oh, I'm so excited!!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Sewing is My Crack

I've been kind of tired and grumpy most of the day. It seemed as though I didn't get enough restful sleep last night. But, then I came home and dug out my sewing machine again. I wasn't totally feeling the sewing vibe but knew I needed to get a the machine out so I was ready when the feeling hit. And, of course, it hit right away. I spent about an hour sewing tonight. Sadly, it was my secret quilt project so no photos for you all! But WOW, what a mood changer!! I'm so glad.

I can show you the weekend craft I did with my friend Dorthe and my mom. I inherited four of these tins from work. They originally had tea in them. We each covered them using Mod Podge (love that stuff!) and various papers. This is mine. It is now inhabiting my desk and holding all of the pens, markers and scissors that had been rolling around in the drawer. It is covered in bits of wisdom and inspiration. Perfect for the exploring mood I've been in!

How have you been?

Sunday, November 29, 2009

November Just A Minute

It's the 29th again, so time to play Just a Minute...

Listening... to the Glee soundtrack A LOT. Gosh, it makes me happy!

Praising... my boss, for being understanding during my recent bout with migraines. He was wonderful about encouraging me to take care of myself and stay home if needed.

Watching... the end of new episodes of shows until January or February. But, the good news is Love, Actually is on tv a bunch!

Reading... Life is a Verb: 37 Days to Wake Up, Be Mindful, and Live Intentionally. I love the message and get inspired each time I read bits of it.

Cooking... a Thanksgiving turkey, cheesy potatoes, sweet potatoes and other deliciousness for family and friends. And, today Mom and I made turkey noodle soup with the leftovers. Yum!

Writing... a bit, although not as much as I'd like. I'm in need of writing curriculum and would like to be working on some personal development stuff.

Sewing... a quilt top for a friend.
Loving... life. Because it offers so much!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

I Love Trees

A day at Morris Arboretum with Mom.
Sunny and unseasonably warm weather.
The ability to walk slowly, sit a little and relax.
Life is wonderful, isn't it?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Gratitude Wednesday

It's another Gratitude Wednesday, and just one day before the Thanksgiving holiday in the US. This week, I am grateful for so much....

spending time with my mother for the holiday
the ability to provide a home for myself
my creativity
my headaches being slightly more manageable than they were
the little love seat in my office... for afternoons when the headache catches up with me
the ability to put good food on the table
excellent neighbors, including Brooke who brought me soup when I was under the weather
the love in my life
hand lotion, as it gets colder and my hands feel dry (simple but wonderful!)
the ability to laugh at even the smallest of things
life, the verb.

What are you celebrating today?




Sunday, November 22, 2009

Thanksgiving Prep

This weekend I did a bit of preparation for the Thanksgiving holiday. Thanksgiving is truly my favorite holiday. I love the idea of giving thanks for the blessings in our lives. I love the idea of people coming together to break bread and celebrate. I love the foods I have but once a year, like my mother's sweet potatoes.

This year, I'm having a fuller table. My mom is coming to town on Tuesday. My friends Dorthe and Robyn are coming for dinner. Robyn's father is also coming. I'm grateful for all of these loved ones gathering together, knowing dinner will be filled with laughter and friendship.

On Saturday, I went shopping at TJMaxx. I got a couple of things for the centerpiece, which will be small so we can fit all of the food on the table. I also got some Christmas gifts - woohoo, I'm almost done with my shopping!

And, I made a trip to Wegmans to get all of my groceries. Although it is a bit of a drive from my apartment, they have the best produce in the area. I now I have a 12 pound "young, fresh turkey" in my fridge. (It sounds so cougar-like.) I also made some applesauce that may or may not make it to Thursday! I have one more day to accomplish the laundry and cleaning before my mom comes.

Today, I was able to carve out a little time to work on my friend's Christmas quilt. I made about 5 mistakes while sewing pieces together so the seam ripper was highly utilized! But, I'm genuinely loving how things are coming together and I think she'll really love the final product.

A wonderful weekend leading into a wonderful week....

Friday, November 20, 2009

So Much Fabric, So Little Time

Amy just got back from Japan and I have to say, is a horrible temptress. I just almost spent $60 in her shop on adorable fabrics. Seriously, I had to close down the tab. And then I opened fabricworm. Oy! Really, what was I thinking??? I somehow managed to walk away. However, I'm pretty confident that paypal credit is doomed by weekend's end.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Handspun Beauty

I've been remiss, due to not feeling well, in blogging about this wonderful yarn I won from Becky's recent contest. It's handspun baby alpaca loveliness! Aren't I the luckiest? Now, to find the perfect pattern to compliment it....

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Another Etsy Item

I haven't been an overwhelmingly productive crafter lately due to being under the weather. (By the way, did I ever tell you about the psychic who told me my father was under the weather? This was in college. My father died when I was 14. So, in a sense, he was right. The phrase "under the weather" always makes me think of that.) However, last night I finished up this baby set. I promised to have it done by the middle of the week and I like to keep my word.

My friend Allie was looking for a gift for a friend of her's. She needed something green and yellow to go with the theme of the baby's room. I was happy to order some new flannel so I could oblige the request. The items tied together on the left are a stroller blanket, a burp cloth and a bib. I threw in a small patchwork cloth. Allie is pregnant so she can either gift it with the set or keep it for herself. Tomorrow, it gets mailed out!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

T-shirt Quilt



I'm hoping to take this pile home, along with a few other shirts, and make a small-ish t-shirt quilt for one of the students I've worked with for two years. I think it would be meaningful to her and relatively speaking, an easy gift. I'm waiting on a few other shirts but hoping I can use the winter break time off to get a start on this. She's done with her office at the end of January. Although the quilt most likely won't be done then, it would be nice to have made a good start of it....

See, my brain is thinking creatively even if my hands are not!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Seeking the Positive

In general, I tend to be all about the silver lining. I believe everything in life has some positive, which we can see if we try. And, I also try to focus on the positive in my life within this blog. I believe positivity breeds positivity....

As I've told you, lately I've been waylaid by a string of migraines, coming on a daily basis. The medication prescribed be the doctor was good for dismissing the headache that day; however it came back again the next. This Saturday, I emailed my doctor regarding the on-going pain. It has been cutting into my efficiency at work and my love for life. My doctor, bless her heart, emailed me on Sunday. After two email exchanges, I'm on the way to trying a new prescription and hopefully combating this pain. I'm so impressed, and deeply grateful, by the Sunday exchange with my doctor.

Between working and headache pain, this weekend was a bit of a wash. Although I managed to varnish some el cheapo Ikea frames (love 'em) not much else was done. Sewing primarily took a backseat, as did socializing with friends. I'm hoping since I have to depart work early today to handle some Comcast shenanigans, to squeeze a wee bit of crafting in this afternoon.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Flea Market Finds....

On Sunday, I got to visit my favorite Buffalo flea market again. Since it was a gorgeous day - 60 degrees in Buffalo in November!! - there were a lot of vendors there hoping to clear out their stock before the winter.

I was able to purchase this little step ladder for $6. It was originally marked at $16 and then marked down to $8. As I'm looking at it, trying to figure out where in my apartment could become a home, the vendor walked up and said I could have it for $6. I am still not sure it has found its right home, but for now it is in the bedroom. I'm glad I didn't walk away... I think I would have regretted it.

I also got this orange crate. It's a pretty simply one with no markings on the side. It was marked at $3 and the vendor tried to give me this one and another one for this price. When I wouldn't take the second one, he gave me a dollar back! Again, not sure this is the final home. Or its final color. I am contemplating sanding it and painting it a light green.

And, I bought a Christmas present. One of the vendors was selling (somewhat) vintage pins for a variety of baseball teams. My boss is a big Phillies fan so this will make its way to him for the holidays. It's just perfect!

My mom got an AWESOME sideboard for her dining room for only $20. It is a gorgeous piece (I should have taken a picture). I will admit I kind of strongly encouraged her to purchase it. But I know she doesn't regret it!

And, we bought a large milk jug for a family friend's umbrella and cane. He served in WWII and this was a Veteran's Day/you're good people gift. My mom is going to re-paint it for him, as he is out of town currently.

Altogether, I spent $23 and my mom spent $25! Fantastic outing!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Gratitude Wednesday

I'm again celebrating Gratitude Wednesday. On this Veteran's Day, I'm grateful for the men and women who have served or are serving the United States. Thank you for all you do to protect and defend.

On a smaller scale:
  • I'm grateful to my doctors for taking me seriously with regards to this on-going migraine. I'm home again today, hoping a solution is around the corner.
  • I'm grateful for the rain cleaning the dead bugs off my windshield.
  • I'm grateful for a little dog that likes to snuggle when I'm not feeling well.
  • I'm grateful for a fridge stocked with food... ziti, English muffins, apples, Lean Pockets.... all of these will get me through the week.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

And Another Thing....

Tomorrow is Gratitude Wednesday.... I hope you'll participate!

Wow It's Been Awhile, Hasn't it?

Hello again! Sorry for an extended absence. I've been burdened by a migraine for the past six days or so. Luckily, I was able to get into my doctors office today and had a doctor that took me seriously and spent time evaluating what was going on. After a bit of blood work, I was off to the pharmacy. I'm hoping this is movement towards a close solution.

In that time, I also traveled to Buffalo for a friend's wedding. It was a beautiful ceremony and I'm so pleased for her. She's found a good life mate. And, she was an absolutely gorgeous bride!

While in Buffalo, I also visited the flea market (good to be shown later), spent some quality time with Mom, made an emergency vet visit for an abscess on Rosy and ate some great foods. It was a full weekend to say the least!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Angel Power?

On Saturday night, my friends and I had girls night in at one of our home's. We also had Arts and Crafts night #1 and painted little canvases. My friend Dorthe did a sketch and we all painted our own angel. All of our angels came out quite different, as you can see above. My angel is below. She will eventually have a place in the large space above my couch, once I find her some friends to hang there.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Revised Turkey

Tom got a body, legs and new eyes. He's happier and so am I.

Gearing Up for Turkey Day

I made this little guy, Tom, last night. He's not perfect and hangs a bit crooked. I'll probably change his eyes if I make him again. But he's a good little turkey to welcome people to my apartment.

ETA: I've been looking at him more and I'm not totally happy. I might try to give him more of a body tonight.

Happy November!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Ducks Like Privacy Too

How was your Halloween? Mine was busy... banking, loads of laundry, cooking and a get together with my girlfriends. Really, it was perfect! I also did a spot of sewing and managed to finish this project.My shower has one of those L-shaped bars at the top and the end has been open since I moved in. The only thing that has bothered me about it is that everyone who uses the bathroom knows what shampoo I use. (Really, the lack of privacy....) So I bought some fabric, shower curtain hooks and a plastic liner.
And, now my shower is hidden!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Just a Minute : October

Oh, Blogtoberfest and Just a Minute collide today... wonderful!

Reading... The Lost Symbol, which was good although not as great as some of Dan Brown's other books. I definitely liked Angels and Demons and The DaVinci Code better. Still, I couldn't put this book down. That's always a good sign right? Other than that, I've been trying to catch up on my magazines.

Keeping... my freezer stocked with good foods for winter. I currently have pasta sauce, ziti, Swedish meatballs, pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, apple muffins and butternut squash stockpiled. I need to get more squash and make a batch of chili sometime soon! Nothing makes me happier in the dead of winter, after sloshing through snow and slush, to come home to an easy, defrost-and-go dish.

Sewing... the wee baby boy quilt. Now, on to a quilt for my friend for Christmas. I have a good idea what I want to do thanks to Amy. Can't say too much here though since she reads this blog!

Watching... GLEE! Seriously, I might be obsessed. I love the show. If you haven't seen it, find it on hulu. I'm excited for Game 3 of the World Series only because they are performing.

Trying... to practice patience. In life. In work.

Making... my best life each day. Or, at least trying to do so. It often seems like life goes a mile a minute. I keep trying to remind myself to take pleasure in each minute, to be grateful for all that I have in my life.

Congratulating... a friend who has moved into the chairmanship role of an organization I respect and belong to. She'll be amazing and I'm excited to see what she accomplishes over the next two years.

Interested in playing along... head over to August Street and sign up.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Gratitude Wednesday

I am grateful for....
  • a little dog asleep at my feet
  • a bit of brightness in this otherwise rainy day
  • free cupcakes at work today... serious happiness
  • good friends who rejoice in my happiness and listen to my concerns
  • hand sanitizer after giving out flu kits to students
What are you grateful for this Wednesday?

Think Gratitude Wednesday should be a regular feature and you'd like to participate? Click below!

Monday, October 26, 2009

SuperPops....

CurlyPops had a little contest for the best rendering of SuperPops. Here's my little take on our superhero....

That SuperPops, she really is at the pinnacle of her super hero-ness. It's impressive! Doing an adequate rendering was going to be tough. We started out with these supplies. She had to take a bit of a bath first, since she had been out of the golf course this summer. After the bath and a toweling off, she was ready to reveal herself to the world! What with wearing a cape and tiara (because a girl MUST have accessories!), we hesitated on putting on sensible shoes. Really, they didn't quite go with the vibe SuperPops likes. But, the boots would have made her fall over and she has to be prepared to run when flying seems like overkill. So casual brown shoes won out.

She's pretty happy to be here in Phildelphia, providing protection against divets and bogeys. She even found a little Australian sidekick to keep her company. Go SuperPops go!




She flies through the air with the greatest of ease... we just hope she doesn't hook right into the trees!

Trees, Glorious Trees

Yesterday, Rosy and I went on a long walk, admiring the colors (me) and smells (her) on our path. I love autumn for many reasons.
It's really just gorgeous in my neighborhood right now.
My neighbor was out raking up leaves. Of course Rosy climbed right into the pile. I had to pull her out.
Isn't that second tree fantastic? I'm sure I mentioned before my love for trees. The way their branches zig out of their trunk every which way. The gracefulness of those branches. I continue to be awed.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Wee Baby Boy Quilt : Done!

I finished the baby boy quilt this morning. It's in the wash and listed on Etsy.
Overall, I'm pretty happy. I love the variety of textures: linen, cotton, flannel, and chenille.
It definitely was a fun little project. And, I really enjoyed working with a new color scheme, as I haven't used so much blue before.
Happy Sunday to you!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Thursday Bit Back

Tonight, I came home from work after what felt like a long day but was really no longer than normal. Rosy and I went for our walk even though I felt like just taking off my work clothes, slipping into my pjs and relaxing. She needs regular walks and it is good for me. These are the things I tell myself in order to go on the walk. I watched a bit of the news of the day and made a grilled cheese for dinner (with the last bit of the apple pear sauce). And, now I sit on the couch reading through other people's days via blog posts. Resting. Grateful for the life I've been given, even when it is so busy I forgot midway through the day what blessing I've been granted. Life is good. So is my couch, which will be cradling me for the remainder of the evening. Happy Thursday folks!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I Have Been Crafting, I Swear!

I've been working on the baby boy quilt. Having a weekend visitor meant no sewing time. So since then, I managed to pin the bias tape on. The hold-up right now is just sewing it on and then a nice wash and tumble through the dryer. It will be done by the end of the weekend for sure.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Weekend Re-cap

This weekend with my mom was wonderful. Mom and I did a number of fun things. On Saturday, we did the Lehigh Valley Wine Trail with my friend Laurel. We visited five of the nine wineries and I came home with five bottles of wine! It was a great little trip, despite the nor'easter dumping rain on us. And on our visit to Pinnacle Ridge, we were filmed for what might become a Travel Channel program! We came home to a simple dinner of grilled cheese and tomato soup - much needed after spending so much time outside - and a movie.
On Sunday, we had a low key day. Late start, followed by Ikea with friends, a fast return at Target (and new tights!) and grocery shopping for Mom's Swedish meatballs recipe. We came home and I took a quick nap to kill off the bad headache I had. After about an hour, I was mostly back in the game and we made the meatballs and some more apple pear sauce (yep, I'm addicted!). Yummy dinner and some Deperate Housewives.

My mom left yesterday morning right before I had to leave for work. She's such a special woman and I'm so lucky to have her healthy, fun and such a supporter of mine.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sewing Machine Recommendations?

I'm looking to upgrade machines sometime in the next year. What sewing machine - brand and model - do you own? Why do you love it? How does it handle quilting? Other advice and thoughts welcomed.

Merci!

The Drink of a Memory

I am a simple woman.
This very well might be the highlight of my day today. I haven't had one of these collapsible cups in a number of years. They remind me of when, as a child, my uncle the dentist cleaned my teeth and then gave me one of every toy in the office toy chest. Said uncle has since passed away so the memories are particularly sweet. Thank you SEPTA for my cup and Uncle John, I love you.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Terrain on a Rainy Day

Today my mom and I visited Terrain. I've heard such amazing things about this garden/home store and cafe that I'm excited I final craved out some time to visit it. First off, it is overwhelming gorgeous and relaxing. As my mom said, almost Zen like.
And the cafe is amazing. Honey wheat bread and butter and water in Ball canning jars were on each table. Bulbs growing around you. We shared the truffle mac and cheese (yum) and each had the scallops. And, finishing the meal was a caramelized pear ice cream sandwich. Seriously, I would go there again for the food alone.
A lot of the items in the shop were slightly out of my price range, especially since I don't have outdoor gardening space. However, it was worth the short drive for atmosphere alone. What a lovely little adventure to start my visit with mom!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Best Dilemma: More Quilting or Just Binding?

Last night, I did a spot of quilting on the baby boy quilt. I'm trying to decide if I want to quilt it a bit more or just add the binding. Right now, it is simple straight lines framing the coin columns. I put it aside so I would have a bit of time to think about it before committing to one path or the other. Good news is I'm totally loving it. This won't be my Craft Hope quilt but something for the Etsy shop. (Speaking of the shop, I'm having a bit of a sale.) Now, I get to start thinking about my next two quilting projects - which I plan to work on simultaneously. One of the Craft Hope quilt and the other is the quilt for my friend's Christmas gift. Such fun!

I will say, with all of this quilting, my knitting is suffering. I really shouldn't blame the quilting... it's not fair. It is also the minor carpel tunnel that I don't want to become worse. (Although that doesn't deter my solitaire playing on the iPhone!) I do need to start knitting again. And, identify a great looking mitten pattern for my friend who needs a pair. I was inspired last night to frog a scarf I was working on and make it into an infinity scarf instead.... but I had just painted my nails and frogging wasn't an option. Maybe tonight?

How have you been craft cross training lately?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Ch-ch-ch-changin'

The change of colors is here. I love it! Fall brings:

apple picking
crisp walks in the woods by my apartment
comfort foods like pasta and stew
nesting, including sewing
Christmas gift making
winery tours
a gorgeous drive past changing trees each day on the way to work
dark nail polish
tights with dresses
boots, dress and Uggs
my favorite scarves, freshly washed and waiting

What are you looking forward to most this season?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Craft Hope Project #5

Those that know me know I'm a big softie. I cry at touching books, personal stories of someone overcoming hardships and Hallmark commercials. Today, I was reading this Craft Hope post and knew immediately I needed to commit to this. Because homeless kids pull at my heart strings. And, to whom much is given, much is expected. I have been nothing but blessed in life.

They have made this project so that beginning quilters and those without a lot of time can contribute. Check the post for details. Please consider changing the world in a small way by committing to this project.