Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Northern Illinois Shop Hop - Part 2

I went on the Northern Illinois Quilt Shop Hop on the 8th, 9th, and 10th of November.  My friend and I went to 16 total shops - only 15 of them were on the Passport - the other one was in Wisconsin and since we'd never been to a Wisconsin shop - we just had to do it!!  lol.

Anyway - I got a phone call on Monday - November 21 - informing me that I had won the grand prize for the shop hop - a Bernina 215 Sewing Machine.  Believe me when I say that I was in shock - I rarely if ever win anything.  I go to at least 3 quilt clubs a month that give door prizes and I'm never called - even when there are 6 people attending and 5 prizes are given away.  But I won this wonderful machine.  Dave and I drove up to Rockford yesterday to pick it up and I unpacked it and set it up this morning.  I'm having an issue with the bobbin but I found a couple of U tube videos so I should be able to sort it all out while I'm trying to make Christmas Presents!!  I am really stoked about this.

My next post is going to be my take on making half square triangles - 8 of them at a time.  Hopefully I will get it posted over the weekend.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and I'll have a picture of the new machine by Friday also.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Northern Illinois Shop Hop

Spent the last three days doing the Northern Illinois Shop Hop.  There were 15 shops - spread from Rock Falls, Il to Orangeville, Il to Clare, IL and down to La Salle, IL.  It was a lot of driving but we found so many really neat things, so some towns and roads we had never been to before and generally had a great time.  My passport is ready to be sent in today so maybe I will win something and maybe I won't but it was worth the time.  I'm not so sure my husband would say that as he was left here to fend for himself for three days - oh well he should be used to that by now.

We were responsible citizens and did vote - early voting a couple of weeks ago to make sure we got it in as we had to leave at 7 AM on Tuesday to get to where we needed to be, and we didn't get home until after the polls closed.  Very grateful for the lovely weather we had - no rain or snow - there was a little wind, but not bad enough to stop anything.

I think I'm taking tomorrow off.  Going to do a little sewing, bake some dinner rolls for the Church Harvest Dinner on Sunday and just chill with a new book I'm reading - A Summer of Discontent by Susanna Gregory - so far it is good.  Set in 1354 Ely in England.  I truly love Medieval fiction.

I am working on Christmas gifts for family and some friends - so that has been on my agenda for several weeks and I'm making good progress.  I found nearly everything I needed to finish all of the projects while on the shop hop - so now I just need to settle down and do it.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

November First!!

I am having a hard time believing that it is the first of November - where in the world did October go!!  It seems like just yesterday it was winter and my Husband was rushed to the hospital - everything went really fast from there - with the pancreatitis - and the working on the new diet and the discovery of the heart condition and all the tests and doctor appointments and then more tests and then the waiting for the pancreas to heal so they could do the essential Surgery that would get him back to normal - what ever normal is supposed to be.  At any rate the surgery is now nearly 10 weeks behind up - there are no more Doctor appointments before March, he has rehab three days a week but he can do whatever he wants to do - within reason.  He's not going to bench press 500 LBs.

The other reason it is hard to believe that it is November is the WEATHER!!  It was a most glorious day today.  It was close to 80 degrees - dry - calm - the birds were singing - I took some of my sewing out and sat in my front yard and enjoyed the day.  Hubby was working on a project over by the garage.  Is that what is called alone together??

At any rate - I'm working on Christmas Presents and getting ready to go to the Northern Illinois Shop hop next week.  We decided to sneak into Wisconsin as we have never ever gone to a quilt shop in Wisconsin - that ought to be fun.

I started two new blocks of the month in September - one is called 1930's Farm Wives and one is Called Freedom Bound.  They both have their challenging moments, but that is why we do them to challenge ourselves.

My friend Merrie and I are thinking of starting a quilting circle at our church - called the Lydia Circle.  We'd start off with a block of the month and then maybe morph into making quilts for local needs.  Houses that get destroyed, new houses that get built.  Va Quilts - I don't know yet, but I think we should do something like that.

I've had a very productive reading schedule the last few months.

July 2016 Book List 
Death Comes Quickly by Susan Wittig Albert
Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear
Cranberry Bluff by Deborah Garner
Murder and Moonflowers by Leslie Leigh
On the Fringe by Aaron and Charlotte Elkins
The Reluctant Queen by Joan Wolf
Birds of a Feather by Jacqueline Winspear
Pick of the Litter by Laurinda Wallace

August 2016 Book List 
Savannah Gone by Doug Keeler
Death of a Kitchen Diva by Lee Hollis
Daughter of Jerusalem by Joan Wolf
Booty Bones by Carolyn Haines
Hazardous Duty by Christy Barritt

September 2016 Book List 
Pardonable Lies by Jacqueline Winspear
Illusion Town by Jayne Castle
Motherhood is Murder by Diane Orgain
Spider Woman’s Daughter by Anne Hillerman
A Temporary Ghost by Michaela Thompson
Messenger of Truth by Jacqueline Winspear

October 2016 Book List  
Dinner for Two by Drea Stein
Mr. Churchill’s Secretary by Susan Elia Macneal
The Nightingale before Christmas by Donna Andrews
Obsession by Nora Roberts
Aunt Dimity’s Death by Nancy Atherton
Heron’s Cove by Carla Neggers

Many are old favorite authers, Jayne Castle, Donna Andrets, Nora Roberts, Carolyn Haines,Aaron Elkins Susan Wittig Albert, Carla Neggers, and Joan Wolf.'

New are Jacqueline Winspear - on a recommendation from a Friend I tried Maisie Dobbs - I was hooked in the first few pages and have now read 4 of the books. Anne Hillerman is another.  The daughter of Tony Hillerman and she is continuing the story line that he started - it is a very good book.

I'm really tired so I'm off to get some sleep

Friday, August 12, 2016

Bummer Year

I am actually not the first to say that 2016 has been about the worst year on record.  For my husband and I it has been especially trying - starting in February and has not ended yet - probably won't end until Thanksgiving at the earliest.  Between traumatic hospital stays - including him being air-lifted to a bigger teaching hospital - 4 days in ICU - 13 total days in the hospital - complete lifestyle change - and the discovery of a second life threatening condition which needs surgery.  The surgery couldn't be performed until the initial condition was completely healed.  So here we sit 5 months later and they can finally do the heart surgery he needs for a condition we didn't even suspect he had.

I would never have considered the possibility that I would be thanking God for my husband being taken in the ambulance to the hospital in the middle of the night and nearly dying from a condition I had never heard of before - but I do.  If it hadn't been for that sudden and acute attack - they would never have found the heart murmur which lead to finding the Aortic Stenosis - from which he would have died in less than 3 years if left untreated - and he NEVER goes to the Doctor's - he's as healthy as a horse!!  He can now have the surgery and the recovery time is about 3 months - which will be shortly after Thanksgiving in late November.  I don't ever want to repeat a year like this.

But on the other hand - I have gotten a lot of sewing and Quilting done.  I'm working on completing 16 UFO's in 2016 and to date I have 9 completed - one I am hand quilting - one sandwiched and ready to quilt on the machine - and 2 ready to sandwich - So I'm doing good there.  I have them posted Here - 16 in 16.

I've also was the first to turn in my 2016 Row x Row Experience quilt to Neal's Sewing Center in Muscatine, IA.  I only did the required 8 rows this year as opposed to the 18 I did for last years and didn't finish until June - right before the new one started.

2015 Row By Row

2016 Row by Row

We have also been doing quite a lot of work on the house - cleaning, repairing and painting the front door, storm door and trim - and replacing all the flooring on the deck - I learned I can break 2x4's by hand - of course when the said 2x4 is rotten to the core it isn't really that hard!

I have been doing a lot of reading this summer also - especially in July.

Death Comes Quickly by Susan Wittig Albert
Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear
Cranberry Bluff by Deborah Garner
Murder and Moonflowers by Leslie Leigh
On the Fringe by Aaron and Charlotte Elkins
The Reluctant Queen by Joan Wolf
Birds of a Feather by Jacqueline Winspear
Pick of the Litter by Laurinda Wallace

Some of the authors are old favorites like Susan Wittig Albert and Aaron Elkins, but some are new favorites like Jacqueline Winspear and Joan Wolf.  

I love Jacqueline Winspear's Heroine, Maisie Dobbs - a 1930 London girl who is a psychiatrist and investigator.  So far her investigations have had their roots in the horrors of the Great War but are occurring in the here and now so to speak.  Very interesting historical reads.  

It has been raining most of the last 24 hours, but the sun has finally come out to hopefully it will begin to dry out a little bit.  It is horrible what is happening in Louisiana and all up through the Ohio Valley with the torrential rains and flooding.  What we have had is just a blip compared to that.