Saturday, October 21, 2017

October Leads to Leaves

I love this poem.

All my life I have resented Autumn.  I hate to leave behind the warm summer days and glorious sun beating hot on my face. As I grew older I began to wear a hat to protect my head from the heat, and a bandanna on my forehead to catch the sweat.

I still hate to leave summer behind.  But I must confess that I don't hate Autumn so much anymore. The days will grow cooler next week. (We are still above normal temps.)  "they" even say we may see a flurry or two, though it won't stick.  Just little bits of snow blowing in the wind.

I have already started to focus on what stitching will occupy my time when it's too cold to be outside.  Today will be the last warm day for a while and I have one more project to do outside, then I'm done with it.  I'm not even going to blow leaves this year.  Terry plans to mow them out to the street letting the John Deere create a long pile along the road for the leaf picker uppers to collect and cart them off.

I hesitated to add the following paragraph.  It is really my inner thoughts on how to keep my piece of mind.  Forever I have been the caregiver.  I continue that roll with Terry.  For all else...I am free.
I turned 66 the other day.  Somehow my mind did an instant adjustment:
Eliminate people and things that cause stress instead of reducing it.
Focus on what I want to do, that does not include raking.
Snow will be plowed shoveling here ANYMORE except a path to my bird feeders.
Catch up on TV watching that I have been avoiding.
Continue to do what I can to resist the direction this country is taking.
Stitch more.
Speak more...bite my tongue where that used to be a hard thing to do.

Most of my blog friends don't talk about their real inner thoughts.  Keep the conversation light.  No controversy.  Perhaps this place is our escape.  I am in the Autumn of my life.  I embrace it and hope Winter is a long way off.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Do You Slow Stitch

Remember this cupcake quilt?  Yes, I know, I probably started it a year ago.  The first quilt I pieced.  An embroidered cupcake in the center of each block.  Each block seam is hand stitched in three rows of stitching.  Or it will be when I am done.  I am close. It sits in a laundry basket by my recliner.

So what is the hold up? What's taking me so long.  Why in the heck isn't it done by now.

The simple answer is the Crazy Train.  If you have been visiting her long, you know that is my reference to the times when my daughter brings drama to my life.

When things are going smoothly in our relationship, I stitch.  When things are not so good, I set it aside and lose interest.  You might guess this has been a pretty rocky year based on my slow progress.  However, even though the Crazy Train is yet again visiting my spirit, I am for the first time working on it.  You might say I am focused on getting it done and out of sight.  Gifted to be kept, or not.  Her choice.

The part of this project that I really...REALLY liked was the slow stitching of the hand quilting.  Even though I have always liked the look of Boro Stitching, I have never tried it.  All those lovely patches stitched on a base with close stitching, perhaps in different color threads.

I HATE this jacket.  Why would I buy a Army Green jacket?  Not me at all.  It must have been on sale DIRT CHEAP.  I DO that sometimes.  I have even took the TAGS off.

So I have a plan.  I am going to slow stitch lovely patches to cover it entirely.  I suspect it will take forever.  But that's ok.  It'll be my Gummy Drop Deterrent.  And I will not buy one thing to complete this project, except perhaps dye. I will stitch at my own pace.  It is a totally ME project.  A reminder to me amid the Crazy Train visit that I am worthy of a ME focus.

If you do this kind of Boro stitching, please let me know and perhaps share picture of your work.  Share any tips you may have, as I have not been able to find any references to applying the patches.  However I have not yet searched U-tube.

Grateful:  That I maintain my sense of self and sanity.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Took A Day Trip

September 30, 2017

We started the day piling Corey, Alyssa, Laurie, Kyle, Nic, Terry and me into a Nissan Pathfinder, rented for the day so we could all travel to Chicago together.  Destination: Lincoln Park Zoo.

There was a plan.

First stop was a great Cuban restaurant.  I love locally owned restaurants in Chicago.  They have a special ambiance that I am sure is unique to Chicago.  The food was better than OK but not superb.  But it was a great start to the day.  I have leaned to absolutely love Cuban food since Alyssa has introduced us to it.  She is an excellent cook...from scratch too!

We wandered through the zoo enjoying the exhibits until we came to the entrance along Lake Shore Drive where the Lion Statue greets visitors at the entrance.

That's when the plan hatched.

A total surprise for Alyssa.


They have talked about getting married and made plans on where they want to live and a business they want to start.  But the ring was a total surprise on this day.

Corey has a high school friend that is a jeweler.  Together they designed this exquisite ring with a deep amethyst focal with large diamonds on the side and smaller diamonds on the band.

The significance of amethyst is that purple is Alyssa's absolute favorite color.

This is the new family.

Nic and Corey get along well.  Alyssa and Nic fit very well into our family and we all could not be more happy that they are a part of it.

We topped the day off with stuffed pizza at Nancy's, another favorite spot that Corey found on Broadway, I think.

Corey has my love of my hometown.  He has explored it on foot the perfect way to see it all, finding the great places that tourists don't go.

Grateful:  Corey found the girl I always told him he would find when he least expected it.

Friday, October 6, 2017

A Stitching Idea for Tast

I absolutely love anything Sugar Skull or Day of the Dead.  Heck, anything skeleton can jump into my cart!  When I was in our local Meijer store, I saw this tote on the shelf from about 5 aisles away and made a B-line to it and of course it JUMPED into my cart.

I am looking forward to the next stage of TAST.  I forget which name was selected to title it, but the stitches will be issued in Family Groups.  I'm thinking that I will use the Sugar Skull as the pattern to work the stitches on.  Perhaps I'll use a few blocks.  How many stitch families are there anyway?  I'll have to check in my reference books.

I can see that I will use this pattern for a lot of things.  I see purses, totes and pillows as possibilities.

Today when I went to edit my photo using Pic Monkey, the program would not let me save the edited picture unless I paid an annual 3.99 fee.  Well, that's worth it, but not if I could find a different free service.  I found the BeFunky Photo Editing Program and was free and easy to use so it's my new Go To program.

Grateful:  for free photo editing programs.

OK, so what else can I do with this Sugar Skull pattern?

What photo editing program do YOU use?

Are you planning to participate in TAST next year?
If you don't know about TAST, you can find out about it HERE
You can also look for TAST, or Take A Stitch Tuesday on Facebook

Have a great weekend.
xx, Carol