January 17, 2010

Of Blocks and Brothers-In-Law

Some more of my little 6" appliqué blocks added to the pile, they will make more visual sense when the stem-work gets added. I'm still on the hunt for the perfect pen. I think I've an idea for the sashing but will wait until I'm home for a bit and can stage try-outs on the big working wall. It is a rainy grey afternoon here, perfect weather for prepping more blocks and playing a couple of movies. Perhaps a marathon of my National Geographic Egypt series??

A wonderful treat this weekend, my BIL showed up out of the blue and we talked well into the night and again for a long time this afternoon. He'd dropped off the radar and I was very fearful we were being shunned, which is a wicked and shameful practice in my book. Apparently not, and I'm so thankful he was here to see his dad for the last time. And that FIL recognized him. Although as the night progressed he would sit up in bed and say "who is he talking to?" I'd pull my ears out and say Me!

Sunday Thankies
Conversation hearts
Good doggies
Lost little hen was found

January 11, 2010

RIP Tot50, Stop You're Killing Me

Am I alone in being an office supplies junkie? I spent a lot of years working as a secretary so I appreciate good office tools, but I think the seed of the junkidom was planted pre-teen in my Christmas stocking with one of these Swingline Tot50 staplers. I still have and use it, nearly half a century later. I bought a second one when I outfitted the 5th wheel for my extended stay here at the in-laws. I use them primarily to staple manila folder templates to fabric for my chosen appliqué method, starch and press.

All fine and well, nothing remarkable in any of that except last week I went to Office Max to get some more staples and none were to be had. None at the downtown local office supply. I went on-line in my quest and found to my dismay the Tot50 has been discontinued by Swingline. Oh yes, you can buy small staplers...but they take the big honkin' staples, not my fine sharp mini-staples. I found a distributor on Ebay and ordered enough staples to last the next half century and hoo-hiss on Swingline for breaking with the past. If it isn't broke, don't fix it.

Little cheerful blocks keep appearing on the working wall (or a RV version thereof) I can usually get two a night done while FIL gears down from sundowning and into patchy sleep mode. When my eyes are too sleepy to stitch I've been working my way through ancient Egypt mysteries with Lieutenant Bak and his Medjay police force for the second time, penned by Lauren Haney. If you like mystery stories you'll love Stop You're Killing Me. You can search out titles by author, trade, sexual persuasion, genre, and much more.

Monday Thankies

January 7, 2010

Won't See This Egg At Tesco or Safeway

Ever wonder how hens can lay eggs without an episiotomy? The shells are soft when they come out, the underside of hens have super soft feathers, and she hovers lightly over the egg for a short time until the shell hardens.

I'm having a blast with my current quilt project, and it is coming together ever so well. Don't know if 30's reproductions are the right fabric for this but they are cheerful and I have them here and that is enough reason to use them for me. I've been on the fabric wagon since 2001...and I doubt I ever run out of fabric. I wish I'd never 'stocked stash'.

These will finish at six inches and every block is different. I need to get clever about some sashing or border or create more blocks because the 50 patterns from the book won't be enough. I decided long ago big borders just look like the maker ran out of steam. But I have some off-the-wall ideas usual. These are from the 2001 edition of Faye Anderson's Appliqué Designs My Mother Taught Me To Sew, an awkward title if there ever was one but nothing surprises me with an AQS publication.

These patterns are not original to the author but are based on a 1870's wool felt quilt credited to Hannah Riddle of Woolrich Maine. I'm wondering about the book information, there is no Woolrich Maine, but there is a Woolrich Woolen Mills, and there is a listing of intentions of marriage listed on a geneology site for Henry Tuckerman & Hannah Riddle July 4, 1761 of Woolwich Maine.

Whatever, a number of the shapes are used multiblock, so it will be easy to add more blocks. One unusual thing the author did with her blocks is add sequins with a seed bead which really makes the blocks pop in the cover photo. The blocks also include embroidery which bores me to death and also explains why I'm the worst embroiderer on the face of the earth. I'll do my vines with penwork which I've used on a number of my quilts with good success.

On the home hospice front, I've decided FIL's dementia symptoms are a worse punishment than congestive heart failure, acute renal failure, diabetes, or pulmonary disease. Dementia runs the show here now and the afflicted has no defense against this ghastly disorder of the brain. He knows he can't remember but can't remember that he know that. Try living with that concept 24 hours a day and you will have a window into FIL's life.

Thursday Thankies
The ability to reason
The ability to make choices
The ability to think