Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!!!!!

While I have been working away dilligently on the Fall quilt (it is using a TON of thread), I'll not finish for an October OPAM, so once again, I remain finishless two months in a row, so sad :(

But, I have been working, and I'm only here for a minute before I need to skedaddle. I need to look up the opening times for about 4 stores I've got to run errands to so I can hurry home to carve a pumpkin with my 5 year old neice, who, before being put to bed last night, informs her father that she is supposed to be coming to Aunt Susan's to carve pumpkins. BIL will be stopping to buy a pumpkin (and his Halloween candy for tonight...he has now been promoted to co-chair in my Procrastination Club).

And while we're discussing club members, my lovely daughter (who is P Club's Secretary/Treasurer) drops by last night on her way out to celebrate Halloween and needs a little help with her boyfriend's costume. Apparently, hot glue will not stick to leather. So, out goes the quilting needle, in with the leather needle (a couple actually, since I'm trying to sew through sweatshirt that has been hot glued to leather).

They did have some cute costumes, even if said boyfriends' dark brown hair was dyed red rather than the bleach blond they thought they were going to get from the box of Clairol. I think it's cute and told him he could now go out today as Opie Taylor or Richie Cunningham (he was not amused). Not to worry, he said he's shaving his head today before he has to go go ack to work on Monday. (shudder!)

Here they are

Yes, she is a contestant from 'Legends of the Hidden Temple', and around her wrist is the whatever of life. Team Blue Barracuda. She actually painted felt, drew on the fish and glued them to a t-shirt. The bike helmet is from when she was little, thankfully her head didn't grow. There were also kneepads and elbow pads, but they weren't on in this photo. The leggings were necessitated by the fact that they were going bar hopping and it's pretty darn cold out (I was forced to finally turn the heat on today).

And Chris is a character from Sons of Anarchy. Jenifer bought a white sweatshirt and used Sharpies to draw the logo and do the lettering (Friday night, at 10 pm mind you). As you can see, Jenifer seems to have inherited some of mom's creative gene, though I'm not sure I'd have taken on that logo.

Well, I really need to get dressed and hit the road if I'm going to be here for pumpkin carving.

Happy lots of candy....there are no calories on anything left over from Trick or Treat. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

It's Been a Crazy Week

Tonight's quilty refreshment: Blue Moon Ale

The inlaws arrived Friday, so most of the week was spent cleaning and moving furniture (don't ask!). No time for sewing, let alone blogging. Busy, busy, busy. Friday night I entertained friends and family who wanted to see the inlaws while they were in town (that's 'I', as in me, myself and I, as in the hubs played softball while I cooked, served, bartended and bussed tables and counters), Saturday nigiht we all went to the BILs for dinner. This morning we drove almost to Pennsylvania to check out a candy store called Candyland...yes, it was worth it. Never have I seen so much candy I used to love when I was a kid in one place...Turkish Taffy, licorice whips, Clark bars, BB Bats..... It was a great place for picking up stocking stuffers. The inlaws are here until Tuesday, so one more busy day tomorrow--the hubs and I took vacation days from work. Possibly a trip to Baltimore for a museum or two and lunch at G&M Crabcakes.

Yesterday I also attended a Floriani workshop at one of my many LQS's. Let's just say that if I had embroidered on my Bernina, I'd have likely come home with $1349 in digitiing software, like at least 15 out of the 30 women in my presentation did. It was quite tempting. Seriously though, how could you possibly not buy software that you will never pay for updates on...they'll always be free? At least now I know that when I do start embroidering and I'm ready to head on to the next step (digitizing my own designs), I'll be buying the Floriani software as opposed to anything else.

I did buy a very cool scissor set (suitable for a serial killer or a surgeon), and some stabilizer I just learned about and didn't have yet. Hoping to try out this whole embroidery thing in the next few weeks.

Today I got some quilting underway

7 windmiill blocks quilted, 8 to go, then a night of walking foot should head us into binding and a Fall quilt we will have while it's still actually Fall...woo hoo!

Shout out to Jennifer, my runner up winner last weekend, for lettng me know she received her prize. I appreciate the notification. Thanks Jennifer!

Wishing everyone a lovely week with lots of sewing. Stay well (she says with scratchy throat, as she listens to her father in law coughing like crazy in the guest room). And if you haven't gotten your flu shot yet, go get it!

17 days and counting until I'm headed to Florida for a little beachy R&R. 

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Winners! We Have Winners!

 Heck with finding a hat, let's just dump them out on the counter and mix 'em up real good. Careful of my wineglass, Kathy
Look at how Kathy is enjoying the power of selecting the winner of Curtain #2...the  make-it-yourself, Earth friendly grocery sack.
Ooops...not exactly the greatest lighting to show you who won,
But here it is....Jennifer guessed wrong on Curtain #1, so her name went into the draw for Curtain #2. Congratulations Jennifer. Sorry it wasn't a cupcake pincushion, but stick around and you may get lucky on an upcoming Follower Appreciation giveaway ;-).

Amy, our sweet little lawyer (she works for the Public Defender's office) got out her red pen and tagged the winning tickets for added validation. (You go Amy!)  I bet I'm the only Fall Into Fall Quilting Blogger who had an attorney present during winner selection.
 Speaking of Amy, here she is mixing them up for the Grand Prize drawing.
Come on girl, show us the diamond bling. Working as a Public Defender must be a good gig, eh? Oh wait...your clients don't pay you, do they?

Just keep on mixing them up, I need to refill my wine glass.

 Hmm....that's a little piece of paper you know what that means, right?
It means that the Grand Prize winner of Curtain #1 won on their extra entry that they received for being a follower.

 Congratulations Lisa!
And here is Amy's validation on the back of that slip...notice how her handwriting has deteriorated significantly since signing off on the first draw. (Merlot will do that to you.)

Now Johnny, tell Lisa what it is she won behind Curtain #1.

Certainly Suz....Lisa, you've won a.....

ooey gooey, 48,000 calorie, sweet, frosting laden, chocolate almond cake ???

Kidding!!!! (phew!) No, Lisa has won

The lovely Dunroven House Halloween Tea Towel. Luxurious 100% cotton, this towel is embellished with a lovely Halloween panel print from the Witching Hour line, by RJR Fabrics, which is also fine 100% cotton.

But that's not all....also included are two beautiful 100% cotton fat quarters. One, a festive Jack O'Lantern print, the other a sophisticated modern take on falling leaves ('fall into fall'...get it?)\

And wait...last, but certainly not least, included in this fabulous prize package is a coveted scissor bling. Scissor bling....when you want the world to know those scissors belong to you!

Estimated retail value of this prize package: 48 thousand dollars. All applicable taxes are the responsibility of the winner. Prize is not transferable. No prize substitutions. (Amy made me say that :-).)

Seriously, congratulations winners, I'll be sending each of you an email to get your contact info shortly. (The hubs is waiting for me so we can go out to lunch) Thanks for playing everyone, I hope you enjoyed my mystery giveaway

Finally, let's have a big round of applause for Debi for coming up with the Fall Into Fall Quilting Bloggers Giveaway (applause sign

Friday, October 15, 2010

TILT! Game Over! Close Curtain...

The Fall Into Fall Quilting Bloggers Giveaway (that's been a mouthful for the past two weeks), has officially ended. Minutes ago I printed out all your comments, which will be separated into piles of who guessed right (Curtain #1) and who didn't (Curtain #2). The list of followers has been printed out and those names will be added to the the guessed right pile.

In the interest of  entertainment, these piles of scraps shall be whisked away (imagine, if you will, Jeff Probst vacating the final Tribal Council with the votes under his arm) to an exotic location on the Mainsail Drive cul de sac--the scene of this evening's neighborhood Happy Hour Night, where a gaggle of drunken women shall attempt to draw winners without snorting Merlot all over the scaps of paper, rendering them unreadable. Hopefully they'll be able to keep them out of the elaborately (as in approximately 48,000 calories) frosted almond cake I picked up at Safeway for five bucks today, as well.  (You've got to eat something while you're drinking, so  it might as well be sweet, chocolately and decadent).

To assure the authenticity of the above-mentioned drawing, there will be photo documentation on this blog tomorrow--that is if I can manage to remember to take the camera with me when I stagger skip home at 1:00 a.m, (assuming no one dropped the camera into the pitcher of Margaritas that will be made once the Merlot runs out).

Check back tomorrow for the announcement of the winners, and to see just what it was behind Curtain #1.

Have a fun evening!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Look...she sews!

Remember the Mexican Star? Finally feeling back to myself (due in large part to the fact that it's a 3 day weekend), I rolled out of bed and into the studio this morning (of course I did have a cup of coffee first). By 11:00 I had finished piecing the Mexican Star top.

All that was left were to set the curves and topstitch them. So I took a bit of a break (a couple hours) to do a little Kaffe Fassett shopping at -- great sale, ends tomorrow, additional 20% off, I suggest you hightail it over there as soon as you finish reading my post.

There are a million (acutally 60) of these nifty little folded triangles in the quilt top. What you do is bow them in to create a curve and top stitch it to hold the arc.

Three pins to hold each curve, that's 180 very thin, very sharp quilt pins to poke myself with while I sewed each one. I was starting to feel like a human pincushion by the time this was done.

This is the fruit of the afternoon's labors, ready to be sandwiched and quilted. To note the difference, look at the cross bars of blue. In the photo at the top of this blog entry, they're surrounded by light squares. In the finished version they look like kites. It's pretty neat up close because with the top stitching, they stick up a bit, so the quilt has dimension. Once it's finished you might be able to see that.

For now I think I'll drag the pinning table down to the family room and spend the rest of the evening prepping the three finished tops for quilting tomorrow. Good thing I own about a bazillion safety pins (smile).

Enjoy your Saturday night!

Paco's Revenge

Thursday morning I gave the boys their chewies, and proceeded to fix myself a quick breakfast that included bacon. Baily took his usual post at my feet, hoping for some leftover bacon, while I ate. Paco, strangely, did not board the bacon begging train. I soon found out why.

Breakfast over, I headed to the office. Bailey soon appeared with a pathetic questioning look on his sad puppy face and laid down next to my desk. In trots Paco, the larger, thicker chewy that I had given to Bailey in his mouth. He proceeds to walk circles around Bailey, who continues to give me the sad puppy eyes.

I walk the house, and Paco's thin little chewy is nowhere to be found. Either the dog is the Houdini of hiding things, or he's eaten the small chewy already.. something he's never done before (probably because Bailey has always taken it away from him).

Paco goes to the living room, jumps up on the couch, chewy buried beneath him. Bailey sighs. "Sorry bud, paybacks are hell". He settles in figuring I'll leave soon and he'll get it back, after kicking Paco's chihuahua butt.

No less than 45 minutes later, Paco joins us in the office, sans chewy. Bailey runs to the living room and returns chewy-less. Feeling sorry for him (finally), I put my work aside, remove all the couch cushions, pillows, look under the couch, while Bailey is doing his hound sniff around the area. Nada to be found...anywhere.

Nothing to be found, except for a bloated, sleepy, apparently very clever chihuahua.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Paco and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

A little background..Paco and Bailey love rawhide chewies. Bailey will wolf his down within minutes. Paco likes to savor (and torment Bailey), so he will carry his around ALL DAY.

Paco loves to go outside for the simple reason that each trip outside results in a 'cookie' from the treat jar. He would go out 12 times an hour if it meant he'd get 12 little slivers of cookie. Bailey knows this. Bailey disdains this, and from the chewy get-go, Bailey figured out how to make this work for him.

After practically swallowing his chewy whole, Bailey will walk to the sliding door, scratch on it to go out, and Paco will come running ('me too, me too').  I will open the door, Bailey will actually walk backwards, away from the door (if he could, I'm sure he'd be whistling while doing this),  Paco will drop his chewy (''No chewies outside'), bolt down the steps, and Bailey will nonchalantly sidle up, scoop up Paco's chewy and disappear for the minute or two it takes him to swallow Paco's chewy whole..

At first we thought this was just a coincidence...the dog could not be that smart. But when it happened every single time I handed out chewies, we realized that we weren't giving Bailey the credit that was due. So now, when Paco goes out, I pick up the chewy, and boot Bailey's butt outside. Paco then flaunts the chewy in Bailey's face as long as there is a human present. Once we leave, Bailey most likely kicks the crap out of Paco and takes the chewy.

It became quite evident this morning that Bailey has now evolved to the next level of rational thought...

I look up from my desk and there's Bailey, laying on the living room floor, going to town on the chewy I gave him...

And there's Paco, sitting next to him, just staring. No tail wagging, no moving, just sitting there staring at Bailey who is going to town on the chewy I gave him.....wait a minute...AN HOUR AGO. How is this possible?

'Paco, what are you doing?' He looks at me,  looks at Bailey, looks at me again, looks at Bailey.

A quick walk around the house (accompanied by Paco) confirms that the small, thin chewy given to Paco an hour ago, is nowhere to be found.

Bailey, is now sitting behind the chair, going to town on the much larger chewy I gave him an hour ago, while Paco stares. It's now quite clear that Bailey snagged Paco's smaller, identifiable chewy right away, wolfed it down, and moved on to his own large identifiable chewy, leaving Paco to lick the floor that Bailey's chewy touched moments earlier. So sad.

Clearly, Bailey knows what he is doing. Squirming under my glare, he picks up his chewy and heads into the family room. Of course, Paco follows him...waiting...hoping...

Bailey worked that chewy for 3 hours....a chewy he usually dispenses in 3 minutes.  You tell me..the Beagle is a genius.

Poor, pathetic Paco got double cookies for the rest of the day, and a whole Pupperoni..

Monday, October 4, 2010

So how do you really feel, Susan?

Honestly? I blew off the neighborhood ladies Happy Hour/Night this past Friday (oh-m-g.....she is SERIOUSLY ill--call for an ambulance). I haven't felt like sewing for a week, at least. I pull out the pincushion patterns/fabric, and I just sort of never make it past that point. Tonight I missed the monthly quilt guild meeting for the third month in a row. I haven't actually cooked a meal for at least a week (unless you count throwing a frozen Wanchai Ferry meal into a wok for 10 minutes Saturday night as a 'home cooked meal').

It's been raining, it's gotten really chilly, really quick, and I've had some kind of ear/nose/throat crud (in addition to the neck thing) for a week now. It's sapped my energy...and it doesn't help that I'm still staying up until 1:30 a.m. just pissing around--not even sewing.And the occasional dirty martini certainly can't be good. Bad, bad, bad girl.

Today I went to the doctor and got a Z-pack (antibiotic). Hopefully I'll be back to normal by the upcoming 3-day weekend.

Yesterday, Paco

smelled like

oranges, and you know to the Internet to investigate phantom orange smells....'Roger smelled oranges all day Friday, even though there were none around for miles...on Saturday he suffered a massive stroke and dropped dead in the checkout line of the grocery store'.

While I didn't mention this to the doctor (remember the neck pain/throat cancer thing and she told me to STAY OFF THE INTERNET! :), I did mention this to the hubs...because I knew he wouldn't roll his eyes and tell me STAY OFF THE INTERNET!. He did have some advice... 'Sounds like you should stay out of the grocery store today'. He's a big help. Ha ha.

Well, my intent was to tell you about our visit to Jinny Beyer's Studio on Saturday and show you some of my great buys from the Sewing Expo, but I really should take the doctor's advice and snuggle into bed with my Oprah's Book Club book..which I am thoroughly enjoying.

But since I'm a tease, I'll leave you with a little something...

Unless you've got a GO!, this won't excite you. It's a die rack, and I needed this.

I don't think this needs any explanation. We all need Kaffe Fassett 

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Fall Into Fall -- Are We Having Fun Yet?

I see we've got some great guesses on my Fall Into Fall Mystery Giveaway so far. Hmm....are any of them right? Could be :).

It's entirely possible that there are multiple goodies behind Curtain #1 (wink). If you've mentioned one in your guess, your entry counts.

As a reminder, you are given one entry in the drawing for the mystery prize if you are a follower, regardless of whether or not you guessed correctly. Followers guessing correctly receive 2 entries in the mystery prize drawing. Followers guessing incorrectly receive 1 entry into the mystery prize drawing and 1 entry in the consolation prize drawing.

Seriously, can it get much easier?

Probably....stay tuned.

Today we are combining our love of baking and our love of sewing (mmmmm). Check back later to see the fruits of our labors (pun intended).

Enjoy the games if you're a football person, and if not....join me and the grandpup (his mommy is in San Francisco crewing on the Susan G. Komen walk) in some mindless On-Demand viewing (Jerseylicious, Real Housewives, Four Weddings.....) while we feed our creative souls...okay, while I feed my creative soul and the grandpup snoozes.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Fall Into Fall - Mystery Giveaway

Alright Johnny....tell the nice people what they're playing for....

It's a......MYSTERY GIFT! (collective gasps from the audience).

Are you game? Are you feeling lucky? 

Before you go all tense and trepidacious on me, bear in mind that you will definitely receive....

A Halloween fat quarter and a scissor bling, which have been called into service as camouflage for the 'real' prize.

The question is, do you have what it takes to play for what's behind Curtain #1? Or would you like to play it safe and choose Curtain #2. Show them what's behind Curtain #2 Johnny....

It's a....

Make it yourself tote bag panel. (audience ooohs) All you need to add is thread, two 5"x28" pieces of fusible interfacing and a little time on the sewing machine and you'll very shortly be the proud owner of a lovely, reusable Debbie Mumm tote you can proudly carry to the market and stand out head and shoulders above your fellow shoppers carrying the standard Safeway/Giant/WinnDixie/Kroger reusable sacks.

So.....what's it going to be?

Johnny, tell the nice people how the game is played....

If you want to play for the mystery prize, leave  a comment stating what you think is inside the little hobo pack. (Hint #1: it's something that has been mentioned on this blog in the past). Correct answers will go into a drawing for the mystery prize. Incorrect answers, along with comments without guesses (what....are you afraid you'll embarass yourself with a crazy guess? Okay, Hint #2: it's not a Hyundai Santa Fe) will go into a draw for the shopping tote. 

Become a follower and you'll get an extra chance at the mystery prize. (And if you're already a follower, thanks, you'll also get the extra chance). And because I appreciate you taking the time to follow me, beginning in November I'll be awarding a monthly follower appreciation prize. Check back after this giveaway for details on follower appreciation (aka shameless self-promotion) .

Winners for the Fall Into Fall prizes will be drawn on October 15th. Please, be sure you have an email address tied to your name (so I can click on it and contact you). If not, you need to leave an email address in your comment. Entries without providing a means for me to contact you will be disqualified.

Good luck, enjoy the rest of the sure to click on the link in my left sidebar and visit the other bloggers giving away good swag. And take a break from surfing once in a while to do something's good for the soul.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Watch This Space - Tomorrow!

I seem to have miscalculated how many hours are in the day.... I'll be announcing my Fall Into Fall Quilters Giveaways (yes, that was in more than one giveaway) tomorow evening.

We're heading out to the Sewing Expo tomorrow, with a possible excursion to Jinny Beyer's. I should be back and posting early evening.

See you then!