Sunday, April 27, 2008

Thank you for helping me, Rhonda!

My husband walked in the door the other day, carrying with him the mail. In that mail, was a box from my friend, Rhonda. Inside that box, was the most wonderful gift a girl like me could get. FABRIC SCRAPS! and there were some vintage pieces to make a double wedding ring quilt. I sat in my room and sorted all of the scraps into colors then put them away into the designated bins for each color. Then for dessert, I opened the bag full of vintage pieces to decide what I was going to do with them. After carefully looking at each grouping with motherly adoration, I paged through books and magazines. I surfed a little on the net to find something wonderful, then I opened my Encyclopedia of pieced blocks by Barbara Brackman (the goddess of quilts), and found the most awesome quilt block that I could make. This one is it. It is my personality. It is called Letha's Electric Fan, and was published by the Kansas City Star in 1938. As soon as I get one of my projects done, (my rule is that I only work on 4 at a time) I will begin on this one. I am pretty excited to do it. I found a picture of it flying around on the Internet that I am putting here just to give you all an idea of what it looks like. I hope the owner of the picture does not mind that I am borrowing it...what do you all think? Is it me?

Friday, April 25, 2008

will clean for fabric

O.K. y'all are going to think that I am weird. But, I love doing laundry. I love ironing. and I love doing the dishes. It could be the initial attack of the job that does it for me. First off you have this love/hate thing going on where you hate looking at the peanut butter and jelly sandwich stuck to the bottom of that plate and the mystery sippy cup that just turned up (take my advise and just throw the sippy cup out or when you open it you will be unconscious for the kids entire nap time and you don't want to miss that), or you love the smell of the new mountain breeze dish soap more than the scent of lingering stir fry that you made yesterday night. Maybe it is the before and after effect...come to think of it, I am quite sure that is it. I mean, I don't take before and after pictures and keep a log or anything too anal-retentive like that; Its just that I like to get the job done and stand back and enjoy the vision of what I accomplished. I think to myself, "Wow, even Martha freaking Stewart couldn't make my sink shine like that." I carry this into my hobby as well. You see, I take vintage quilt tops or blocks that I swear were sewn together in the dark with nothing but a hammer and band-saw, totally seam-rip the whole thing, iron all of the little pieces, then sew them back together. The uglier the quilt top the more that I love it. It is like this big challenge for me to make something of it. I do have standards though. Double-knit polyester is great to watch on fire and that is about it, so that comes out and fabric that is so weak that it would explode when you sneeze on it is not too great to keep, either. I can't wait to finish some of my projects that I have been working on so that I can make one of my beds, which I promised myself I would not do until then. Hey, I can't have a totally clean husband would raise his expectations of me.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Tubbies=crack/cocaine for toddlers

I hate the Teletubbies. I hate Barney, too. My husband tells me that I should never hate but it's not like these are people or anything. Connor loves them both. I guess I should be grateful that there is something that could keep him entertained when I am fighting with a telemarketer on the phone; although I am not really excited about him learning any of the language that they use on these shows. I can barely understand anything dipsy or lala are we really need our children learning to talk like babies...and Barney with all of his love this and love that, let's hold hands and hug all the time. No wonder today's teens have a record high dose of hormones. I make Connor wear pants when he watches Barney because, well, the dinosaur just plain freaks me out. In my mind I can hear Barney saying "C'mon boys and girls. Lets take our clothes off!" Maybe I am the only person who is weirded out by these shows. I look back at the shows I watched as a kid. I LOVED the Muppets (the two old grumpy guys were my favorite...I wonder why?) Romper Room was another one that I couldn't miss. And I don't care what you all say about Mr. Rogers Neighborhood. I thought that guy was cool with his sneakers and sweaters. Maybe my parents hated my shows too. Wow, I never thought of that. The other day I accidentally baked some biscuits a tad too long (OK...burned) by the time I realized it, I ran into the kitchen saying "Oh, Shit!" Connor is watching his tubbies in the living room and clear as a bell says "Shit". I had to give him an overdose of Baby Einstein so that he would not remember the word. I guess those lovable puppets aren't so bad after all.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

An army of one

Sorry everyone, for leaving you without my entertainment for the last two days. I had plenty to talk about; but I was so tired from lack of sleep to permit myself to type. Something really embarrassing would have been posted about myself...and you can delete posts (thank God), but it is usually too late and then everyone knows about the time that you had gummi bears stuck to your crotch from the movie theatre for an entire evening on a very important date with a handsome man. Oops, I must still be tired.
Connor (my son, the devil) received his big boy bed on Sunday. His Sunday nap went well. He climbed right in and grabbed his bunny (lovie) and went right to sleep. I am thinking at this point that I am probably the best mom in the world and knows everything there is to know about the psyche of a toddler. Apparently, toddlers don't have a psyche. Its called a psycho, AND they know when a great and wonderful mom like myself gets a little too confident in her parenting skills. I am quite sure that Sunday night, when Connor decided that he needed to wake up to practice getting out of bed every half hour, he wasn't really trying to destroy me. But, you made me realize that one single toddler could take down as many adults as the plague. Last night was no different. but tonight I will lay down the law of momdom and then he will see who is really in charge. How am I going to do that you ask. I haven't the faintest idea.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

4 bedroom, 3 bathroom tent wanted.

I love getting scraps. Friends give me scraps. Perfect strangers give me scraps...(isn't it weird how there are never perfect friends and many perfect strangers? Thank God!) Heck, sometimes I even buy scraps. However it is that I acquire them, I always get asked "what do you do with all of these little things?" (I use scraps as small as 1 1/2 inch square). Some people think that I am plain crazy for using such small pieces. Well, let me tell you I am not PLAIN crazy; I am extravagantly crazy. I tell them that I was crazy to begin with, so using them won't make me go there. MRT (mindless repetitive task) is a wonderful thing for those of us who have put in a full day of cleaning smashed bananas off walls, changing interesting diapers, and pulling beans out of noses. Quilting is a MRT, and a damn good one. My problem is that I love the variety of what is out there in fabric world. Think of it in comparison to an all-you-can-eat smorgasbord. You love the ham and the potatoes and oh, the chicken and gotta try the marshmallow-jello thing, sticky bun, and why don't these plates have two levels anyway...but really, you can't eat a pound of each; which is what I mean with scraps. I can enjoy so many fabrics, just small bits at a time. Otherwise, if I bought a yard of every fabric that I loved, my husband and I would be living in a tent down by the railroad tracks with a big out-building as a sewing room. (you didn't think I would give that up, did you?) So, if there is anyone out there who can't stand to look at those little pieces, throw them in a bag and donate them to: Monica's Home for the Textile Insane. (it just may be a tax write-off)

Friday, April 18, 2008

Can you exercise in pajamas?

I went on my morning walk again with my neighbor. We push strollers with kids in them. I suggest to everyone who walks for health to start pushing a stroller with about 30-50 pounds of weight in it. I don't care if you have kids or not. I have lost about 4 pounds in the last week and a half doing this. Now I am not going to start a new product line of weights and powder drinks or even write a book about how I lost all of this weight, but it does make you wonder how someone as stagnant as I, can all of the sudden start a walking program without my body rejecting me. I get home when I am done and I am mentally ready to start my day. Whereas before, I would do house cleaning and child chasing in pajamas until about noon or so. This is not to say that I slept in before either, I was just kind of a cozy homebody. Being holed up during long winters in North Dakota probably had a lot to do with my 'I-can't-leave-the-house-unless-there-is-a-sale-at-JoAnn's' way of thinking. Even then I would look in the mirror before leaving and ask myself if the JoAnn's employees would care if I failed to brush my hair or wore bunny slippers. No, you are looking at an all new and improved Monica. Next thing you know I will be walking ALL the way around the block. (I could do it if I didn't have the stroller, for sure)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

I wanted to show the border that I did for Erika's round robin quilt. She was very happy with it, and I had loads of fun doing it. The first picture is a close-up of what the front label says. The second is the large view of the quilt top.

Do be a drop-out.

I used to belong to a quilting group (bee) that would meet on a weekly basis. I belonged to this group for more than a few years, until last night. Now, let me tell ya that nothing really dramatic happened for those of you sickos that want the details of a steamy cat fight. It was more of a light being turned on and the desire for a quiet exit. You see, this group is VERY serious. My personality is such that you might lose a kidney laughing if you hang around me too much. (but I would gladly give you one of mine to replace the void). People who are too serious do not have a single thing wrong with them except that they do not understand people that have a crazy sense of humor. I am not insane, mind you. But it is very comforting to me to know that I could possibly have a great conversation with an insane person. I take great pride in that. Hell, they may even be relatives of mine. Scene Two: I went to a quilting retreat this last weekend with an awesome group of ladies that I only get to see once or twice a year. They are hilarious! But most importantly, I am understood by these ladies. I almost have the same level of funny. (but if you knew the 'Wacky Pack' you would understand that this is a very elite, widely known and esteemed group of ladies that don't let just any person join. You must pass a certain criteria.) Although I am not a member of their group, I at least feel like honorary guest. I think it was when one of these members wet their pants laughing that I realized that I really need to drop out of 'The Serious Ladies' bee. Sometimes it is O.K. to let go. No one is going to toilet paper my house over this for crying out loud. (thank God t.p. is expensive now). Let this be a lesson to all of you that time is too short to not be 100 percent crazy happy. Surround yourself with people who love you and who you love and I promise you will live longer...unless you lose your other kidney.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

And on the second day, I created coffee

Shortly after moving to my new permanant home of Texas, I was making a pot of coffee with a co-worker one day. I asked him how strong I should make it. He said that if you throw a horseshoe in it and it floats; well, its done. I was so relieved that someone else out there liked it the same way. I love the colorful way all Texans talk. As you can guess, growing up in North Dakota provided me with this accent that can turn any guy off immediately (unless his name is Sven Jorgensen). I say stupid things like 'yoo gise' and 'ya noo' (which means respectively: 'you guys' and 'you know'). I seriously did not even think that I had an accent until I moved out of N.D. Gradually, I added "y'all" and "fixin' ta" to my vocabulary...and tryin' real hard to drop out those bad uns; but all that ever comes out is "Doon't chY'all noo". It is starting to tame down alot now that I have been here for almost 10 years. I figure that by the time I am 92 I will have the Texan accent nailed down. I will be trying hard until then to just practice, and add idioms every now and again. Wish me luck...Now, I am off to make my morning coffee. How much sugar do I add? Well, enough to bend the fork; of course.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

First step for mankind...or just me.

Wow! Day one of my blog...I have seen where people start a blog and leave the first message and that is about it. God help me get to day two. This must be like starting a new diet...well, hopefully better since I am not a diet person. I went for a walk with a neighbor this morning for exercise (and to lose some weight?) I feel lighter already so I am going to go find that OREO bag and make love to it the way it was meant to be loved.