Thursday, February 25, 2010

Some Projects and a SkyWatch Friday Post

I went up to Minden Ontario to visit my mother last weekend. She is in a nursing home up there. My brother did the driving. It was a very beautiful day. Lots of sunshine and moderate temperatures. On the way home the sun was setting. I took a photo, from the car, and am I ever glad I did. We haven't seen the sun all week. If you would like to see more SkyWatch photos from around the world, click here.

On the Crochet Front.....I made this sweater for my Mom. It's Kim Guzman's Jiffy Cardigan. This one is real easy and quick. I think she liked it.

I also gave my Mom the lap blanket I had crocheted last week. She liked that too, but she wanted to give it to my sister's son for the upcoming birth of his new baby. That will be another great grandchild for her! I was surprised that she remembered about this new addition to our family. So I told her to keep her blanket and I promised to make another baby blanket using the same stitch that she could give to the baby. It will look similar to this one, but I will have to use some different colours because I ran out of most of these. Mimi just couldn't resist taking a nap on it before I bundled it up and took it up north with me.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Midnight Moths at Midnight

Here is this week's Block Party block. It's called 'Midnight Moths'. I made it last night around midnight - fitting, don't you agree? It's a 9-inch block. I used some kids fabric since most of my 9-inch blocks contain some fun fabrics. I now have 12 9-inch blocks. I think it may be time to make a quilt out of them.

I really like this block. It was not as difficult as I had first thought. And, it brought back some really great memories. A few years ago my DD and I went to Cuba for a holiday. We had a fantastic vacation - beautiful beaches, wonderful hills to climb, snorkeling, swimming, horseback riding, boating, nightly dancing and daily sitting around by the pool. But when we arrived at the airport for our trip back home, we were told that there was something wrong with the door latch on the plane. Since non of us relished the thought of being sucked out of the plane at 35,000 feet, we had to wait for another plane to take us home. We spent the night in the airport. I use the term 'in' loosely since it was a very tiny airport and most of it was outdoors, including the waiting area. There was a bit of an awning, but it wasn't big enough for everyone. So my DD and I sat out in the open, watching the moths encircle the gigantic lamps that lit up the tarmac. Those moths were huge! This block brought a smile to my face as I remembered that trip. Although it wasn't much fun spending the night in the open, we made the best of things, as we always do, and enjoyed the spectacular moth show!

I don't think I showed you last week's Block Party block. It's called 'Goshen Star'. It's a 10-inch block.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Crazy Birds

I have been busy paper piecing my row for the Round Robin that Barb has organized. I have finally decided on my theme. It will be 'Seascapes'. I am still debating how wide to make the starting row. The length of this row will dictate every other row in the quilt. I don't want it to be too wide because I think I will make a wall hanging when all the rows are done. I was thinking that 40 inches would be a good width. But that makes it difficult for others who might want to do a 9 or 12 inch block. I am still thinking. Got any ideas?

Monday, February 15, 2010

An Olympic Finish!

I have been working on this afghan for the past couple of weeks. It's lap sized, designed for someone in a wheelchair. I got the pattern from Talking Crochet. (Sorry I can't get the link to work) It's called 'I love Scraps'. I used a large (very large) ball of off-white yarn and a lot of scraps from my scrap bag. It was nice to be able to use up a lot of them. The coloured portions look like hearts, so it was fitting that I finished it last night, on Valentine's Day, while watching the Olympics. I worked an edge all the way around it. As I was doing that, Alexandre Bilodeau won the first gold medal in an Olympic event on Canadian soil, or should I say 'snow', in Moguls. So even though the edge is done in off-white, I am calling it the 'golden edge', not only because Bilodeau won a gold for Canada, but also because I was so proud of him and the love he showed for his older brother, Frederic, who has Cerebral Palsy.

My Christmas Cactus is now a officially a Valentine's Day Cactus! It is still blooming. I wonder if it will last until Easter.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Catching Up

It's been a long week. The infection in my jaw is getting better. But I have spent the past week talking without moving my lips or opening my mouth! I could qualify as a ventriloquist now! A ventriloquist who looks like a chipmunk. LOL The swelling is going down slowly too. As is the pain, Thank goodness!

Not much sewing has been going on, but I have worked a bit each day on the challenge our Guild gave us. We were given three fat quarters of fabric - a green, an orange and a rainbow coloured fabric. The challenge was to make a 9-patch quilt using those fabrics. There were a lot of other rules too, but I don't remember them right now. I don't even know if I am allowed to show you this. It's supposed to be a secret I think. But what the heck! Just so you don't think I was just sitting around, reading and taking naps all week, (which I was, by the way) I thought I'd show you a bit of it. I still have to sandwich and quilt it, but it does not have to be done until the end of March.

The thing that does have to get done soon is my row in the Round Robin that Barb has organized. She already has hers done and I haven't even started! I decided on the theme of Seaside or Seashore. When I saw these crazy birds I just knew I had to make a row of them. So I started this afternoon. This one took me one hour! It's only about 6inch wide, so I have a lot more to do. This is just my prototype. I plan to do a bit of re-designing to make it easier. There is also a grass block and an egg block in this pattern. I got it off the internet at Quilt Maker.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Feeling (and Looking) Like a Chipmunk!

I have never had a lot of confidence in doctors or dentists. I know they studied for years and know a whole lot more than I do, but I think I know my own body better than anyone. I'm talking about the toothache I had a couple of weeks ago. My dentist sent me to an endodontist for a root canal. These guys are supposed to specialize in diseases of the root, dental pulp and areas surrounding the teeth. So off I went.

This guy drilled into my tooth and then sent me home to let the infection drain. Last Friday I had the rest of the root canal procedure done. Here is a little word of advice for anyone wanting to hear it. 'Never have root canal work done on Friday.' By the time the freezing had gone out of my tooth it was hurting more than when it was abscessed. And by the time I woke up on Sunday morning I looked like a chipmunk. The left side of my face was totally swollen. The pain was excruciating! And the endodontist, who prides himself on his website as being available 24 hours a day after root canal work, was no where to be found. The phone number for emergency calls did not work.

I was able to get in touch with him on Monday, but he did not want to see me. His receptionist told me that he would contact my pharmacy for some antibiotics. I guess these are the same antibiotics that I asked him for last week - the ones he told me wouldn't be of any help. He was supposed to call me back, but he never called me as promised, and the only way I knew that my prescription had been phoned into the drug store was because the pharmacist called me to ask what the dentist's name was.

My husband picked up the antibiotics and I started to take them immediately. But my face is still swollen and now my whole jaw is aching. Every tooth hurts! I look like a chipmunk! I wonder how long it will take before the swelling goes down and the pain goes away.

Sorry for complaining again! I seem to be doing that a lot lately! Not much sewing is getting done at the moment and I have a lot of things on my list that I should be working on. Oh, dear! I feel a nap coming on. Move over Mimi! It must be the painkillers at work. Hope to be back soon!

Friday, February 05, 2010

Feeling Sorry for Myself

I guess I'm just feeling sorry for myself right now. I had root canal work done this morning. When I got home I didn't feel too bad and decided to make up this week's Friday Block Party block. I must have been totally drugged when I put the colours together.
Now that I look at the finished block the colours are clashing so badly that I am beginning to feel sick. Combined with the clashes of pain in my jaw, I think I need to take a nap. Oh..... this block is called 'Sickle Variation'. I think I'll call mine 'Sickly Variation'. It is an 8inch block.

Oscar has been lounging in his cat bed all afternoon as I was sewing the block together. Here he is licking his tail. What kind of silly behaviour is this?

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Groundhog Day!

Well, it's official - six more weeks of winter. Apparently every groundhog in the country saw his shadow this morning! Too bad we don't have a Scarborough Scarlet or something because it's dark and grey outside. No sunshine here today - therefore, no shadows! Instant spring! Wouldn't that be nice?

What do you think Mimi?

"Meow! You guys really base your weather forecasts on a rodent? That's just plain dumb! Meow!"

Yeah, I guess you're right Mimi.

But if we are going to have six more weeks of winter, I am going to stay inside and sew. This month's UFO to finish is number 7. That's 'Chicken Soup' on my list. Here is a sneak preview.I still have some embroidery to do and then sandwich and quilt it. I hope I have the energy to finish it. When I looked at it closely yesterday, I noticed that I did this one all by hand - the applique, the sashing and even the borders. I have no idea when I started this one - perhaps 8 or 10 years ago! So much work has gone into this one. This really should be the month to finish it. But I am feeling somewhat guilty because I started a quilt with a friend in Japan. I have not had the energy to do anything on it for a long time. Sorry K! I think I will move our Yokohama/Toronto quilt to number 7 and move Chicken Soup to 7a.

The only thing I seem to be able to sew at the moment are these strip blocks. This is a warning! These things are highly addictive! I have made 61 of them so far. These are the four I made this morning. I think I will limit myself to four a day. I want to have 80 in total. That would make a quilt about 48in. by 60in. - big enough for a lap quilt. But who knows! I might not be able to stop!

I promised to take a photo of my stained glass lamp that I posted a couple of days ago. So here it is - taken yesterday when the sky was blue. The dark glass I used for the leaves is actually a translucent glass. I think it was antique glass. I love it because it looks dark, but when the light is on, it shines through and makes it appear light - a pretty aqua colour.And here is another lamp that I made. It has orchids all around it. This was the first lamp I ever made and I think it is still my favourite!