Tuesday, June 29, 2010

'k then.... it's unanimous.

I'll be tossing that chain letter in the trash. It would appear that not a single person I would have sent it to would have carried out the requests contained within. Sure takes away any guilt I might have been suffering for opting out.

Now, on to more bad photography.

I have a seasonal finish to show. A couple weeks ago I stitched the Quaker Star that was a free pattern from Aury's blog. Then it rested on my ironing board while I considered my finishing options. I found a heart shaped candy box that was the perfect size so I covered the box, put the stitching on top, and trimmed it with a matching piece of trim.

In the next day or two I should have an update on Holiday Express. That piece is coming along according to plan. I just hope I can keep it up.

I just heard the weatherman say it could get down to 49 degrees tonight. Good thing I didn't put that winter nightgown away. Brrr.

Tonight is a work night. I live just a few miles from a major performing arts venue, which means chaos sometimes. Tonight is one of those nights. The newspaper calls this bands' fans a 'roudy traveling circus'. Oh goody, is all I can say. The concert won't be in my jourasdiction but since we have court and a judge on the bench we could see some of the action. Maybe the cold temps will keep them calm. Ha. Who am I kidding?

I'm off.

The Queen Bee

Sunday, June 27, 2010

A finish and proof that I'm the weakest link.

A photographer, I am not. This picture was chosen because it shows the fabric color the best.

This is from Blackbird Designs' pattern Easter Parade. It's cute and spring like and has only been in my 'waiting to be finished' pile for 2 years. Why rush these things, right? It's sitting on a table runner I assembled at my quilt retreat last spring and finally quilted and bound this past week. I have a few more quilty things that I'm trying to finish before starting something new. I would rather assemble then finish but I'm trying to dedicate some time to freeing up space for new projects.

Now, on a totally unrelated topic....

Recently I was reading a blog where the author likened blog awards to chain letters. She was explaining why she wasn't going to participate but truly appreciated being given the award. I thought she eloquently voiced her opinion and fully understood her decision. I know there have been hurt feelings over people not wanting to pick the required number of blogs to forward the award to so opt to 'opt out'. There is absolutely no reason someone can't make that choice and get on with their blogging....without shame. Except.....everyone knows who broke the chain because they didn't post the award or who they sent it on to.

Remember that game show where the evil women yelled "you are the weakest link" and sent you off stage in shame? Nobody ever wanted to be subjected to her 'in your face' name calling rejection. Sometimes contestants would be in tears during their post game interview. I haven't seen that show in years. Obviously, I wasn't the only one who didn't care for it. Which leads me to this story... Yesterday I was the lucky recipient of a chain letter from a friend who moved across the county more then 10 years ago. This letter involves sending a book to the person named and copies of the letter to 6 of my 'luckiest' friends. In the end, if nobody broke the chain, I would receive 30 books in the mail. Ok... sure.... just what I want..... 30 books that someone else chose for me to read. Mind you, they're probably people I've never met. If I break the chain (and I say 'if' as if I have any intentions of participating) I wonder what the chances are she'll know it was me? Drat. I hate chain letters. I never participate in the email ones and wish people would simply quit the whole practice relieving the rest of us from having to be the weakest link. Regardless of the potential shame I'm opting to be the weakest link.

What does everyone else think? I've never met a single person who says 'sure send that sucker on to me, I'd love to participate'. So, why is it they still exist????

My older kids leave for their summer long camp counseling jobs today. (They'll come home once a week for laundry, etc, so I'm not going thru withdrawal or anything.) I'm merely planning a few quiet afternoons and a lower grocery bill.

The Queen Bee

Thursday, June 24, 2010

High school, here we come.

Buttercup is officially a high school freshman. On Tuesday evening we attended the 8th grade moving up ceremony. Traditionally, in our school, the girls do it up big for this event. The ceremony is followed by their first semi-formal dance. Everyone has a great time. There is a reception in the cafeteria for parents, so we can stay in the building the whole time, while the kids go to the gym for the dance. It's a very nice way to ease parents into the high school world the kids will soon be taking part. She was most excited and had a great time. I overheard her best friends oohing and aaahing over her hair and dress saying, 'now you look like a girl!' I guess my girls aren't exactly 'girly, girls'.

The Boy Wonder is now a high school senior. It's simply amazing. Yesterday we toured another college campus. It was such a beautiful school in a cute, elegant little town in the Finger Lakes area of NY. This school is currently my top pick and it really doesn't have ANYTHING to do with the fact that the town has a quilt store or that there is another great quilt store on the road I would drive to get to the town. Really, it doesn't. Well, OK, maybe a teeny tiny bit. But, really, it was a beautiful campus with well maintained buildings and grounds along with all those other things one looks for in a college.

Someday soon I'll have some stitching pictures to post. I've been doing the tiniest bit of stitching and am also trying to finish a few things from my 'waiting to be finished' pile. I need to take swatches to Joann's or Michael's to find some matching trim. Then, maybe there will be something worth showing.

Until then, I'm off.

The Queen Bee

Saturday, June 19, 2010

The phases of my summer

This summer is divided into a bunch of phases. Some are short, some long, some busy, others boring. This current 3 week phase is a very busy one. It's the 3 weeks when summer officially begins. When school finally gets out, when everything anyone takes part in wants to have a celebration. It's the 3 weeks between the Scholar getting home from Mexico and leaving for summer camp. The Scholar and the Boy Wonder will be working at a summer camp for 8 weeks. They'll come home each Friday night to do laundry, catch up on sleep, and visit friends, finally, returning to camp Sunday morning.

So we're cramming everything we can into this stretch of time. 2 college visits, senior pictures, shopping for Buttercup's birthday, dentist and orthodontist appointments, the 8th grade moving up ceremony, etc, etc. No need to bore you with all the details. The end result is the same.... I've barely picked up a needle. So sad. I know. I think I'll have lots of stitching time when camp begins but even that stretch of time is shaping up to be busy. Someday the kids will all be off on their own and I'll have all the time in the world so sew, so I'm not complaining but I am counting the days until next Sunday!!

Referring back to my post on June 6th, I was happy to discover Dawn of Crafter's Creation is back to blogging. I've only ever lurked on her blog so she hardly knows I exist, but that's OK. That's the way it works sometimes. I also discovered a post from Gabi, of Lady of the Floss, on a community blog. Glad to see she's still stitching.

Maybe soon I'll have something to show instead of a picture of something I stitched 4 years ago!! I like to include a picture though, just in case that's all someone wants to see! (Not that any of you folks are that shallow seeing as you've stuck with this post this long!)

Love ya, for that!

The Queen Bee

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

4th of July Quaker Style

In response to Lee's request to post a picture of Aury's Quaker star here's mine. I used a piece of 28ct Summer Khaki Lugana with DMC thread. (221, 712, and 930) I don't know how I'll finish it. A heart shape is hard to sew into a pillow so I doubt I'll do that. I'll be anxious to see what other people have done. If you have stitched this let Lee know as she would like to compile a list to send to Aury.

I'm off.

The Queen Bee

Monday, June 7, 2010

Monday, monday...

This is the last Monday of The Boy Wonder's junior year. The wandering daughter is home from Mexico... as of late last night. She had to run to make her connecting flight... and naturally her bag didn't run as fast. Luckily someone drove it the 2 hours from the airport in College Town to our house so we didn't have to drive back that way today. So, anyway, the end is near for any peace and quiet I get around the house. Buttercup still has 2 weeks of school. She's the quiet one, though. It's the older two that will be fighting, or I mean, working out how to share their car. The Boy Wonder isn't use to sharing and The Scholar still remembers when she was the only driver. Anyone remember when we had to share the family vehicle amongst all the drivers in the house???? I will say that it is a huge help to all involved when the kids can drive themselves to their many, many sports and social events... especially since we live where everyone is so spread out... there isn't a parent ready and willing to drive so far out of their way to drop an extra kid off. And, in the Boy Wonder's defense... he's a huge help with driving Buttercup where she needs to go.

Any who.... the real reason you came here was to see what I've been working on.

I finished Shepherd Bush's Halloween Night. This was cute and fun to stitch. I received it as a gift so I don't know the fabric... but it's a large count even weave. I used the recommended threads and the button pack that was included. It will now go in the 'to be framed' pile.


this table runner is made using a pie shaped ruler with 60 degree angles. It was so easy to cut and put together. I see the obvious distortion from cutting the pictures at an angle and sewing them together. It's near impossible to avoid that. It's still really cute fabric and will be a pretty table runner no matter what. There is enough fabric to make a second one so I'll do that and see how it comes out. I can choose which part goes in the center by flipping the fabric before cutting. That will give it an entirely different look.

Over the weekend we went to see Killers at the movie theatre. What a good movie. So funny and who doesn't love Katherine Heigl and Ashton Kutcher? The Mother-in-law played by Catherine O'Hara was hysterical. Tom Selleck wasn't so bad himself. I rarely want to see a movie a second time but I'd gladly sit thru this one again. And here's another perk to the kids driving..... we all went out to supper, but since the kids didn't want to go to the movie, we took 2 cars and they drove themselves home!

I am going to a dish to pass supper so I'm working on my dish to pass. I've put dinner in the crock pot for the family so I will be spending my afternoon in my sewing room. Lucky me.

I'm off.

The Queen Bee

Friday, June 4, 2010

Curious minds want to know.

(Or maybe I'm just nosy?)

I have become very curious about what has happened to some of the blogs I follow. Over on the right is the list of blogs I read regularly. There are more I like to check on that I can get to thru those blogs, so my list isn't really that short.... but that's not what this is about.

See the next to the last blog and the one above it.... Lady of the Floss and Crafter's Creations? Those 2 talented ladies appear to have dropped off the face of the earth. I can't remember how I came to follow Lady of the Floss.... maybe her blog was linked to some one's and I liked what she was working on. I came to follow Crafter's Creation because she was a friend of Renee's. (Renee's original blog was the first one I ever read.... way back when she was an ex-patriot and blogging about adjusting to life in Germany.)

Anyhow, I can't help but wonder what has happened. What would make them stop blogging, almost in mid sentence? I could understand computer problems, for the first few weeks, at least. Then I'd hope they'd get to their public library and log on for a few minutes. I know I'm about to bust a gut when our Internet goes down for half a day. I'm almost in a panic trying to figure out if my office still has Internet, or how far do I need to drive to find a working WiFi connection. Possibly that's just me, but I'd still be making an effort at some point. If something happened to them I would hope someone who knew them would let their blog fans know.

Does anyone have any idea? Just curious.....

The Queen Bee

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

A bookish post.

I have indeed been reading despite the total lack of blogging about it. All the above book photos are from Amazon.... where I buy most of my books. I either buy the actual book or get the Kindle version. I could write an entire post about my Kindle and my love affair with my ipad but I'll save that for another day.... plus I'm waiting for app assistance, so until that's taken care of to my satisfaction, I'm not happy with my ipad today.

Also, since writing an essay about a book is on my list of things I don't enjoy I find myself moving on to the next book and leaving my thoughts unsaid. There are a variety of book review blogs I read..... serious blogs with well thought out book reviews. I came across one recently where the writer made very simple one, two, or three word comments about a book. I'll try for somewhere in the middle. Who knows, maybe someone will see what I write and that will make them read and enjoy a book. After all, that's the idea.

First I read 'Saving Cee Cee Honeycutt' by Beth Hoffman. The cover is so pretty I don't know how anyone could pass it up. It was a good story, well written, but a little too tidy. It was all about wrapping the story up in a neat tidy bow. Cee Cee's mother suffered some sort of psychosis that led to her eventual death. Lots of questions regarding her disease were left unexplored. I want to know these things..... I want the nitty gritty why's and what's when a main character's mother is suffering from something like that.

Next, 'The Postmistress' by Sarah Blake. This was an excellent book. Told from the point of view of 3 women, 2 living in a small Cape Cod town and the 3rd a radio reporter in Paris during the start of WWII. America wasn't in the war yet but folks were becoming more and more alarmed by the reports coming from Europe. The reporter struggled with how to tell the rest of the world what was happening as she traveled around Europe, putting together stories she tried to tell while a censor sat across from her just waiting to cut her off. The women's lives converge when the reporter comes back to America and sets out to visit the town on Cape Cod. I don't want to give away the best elements of this story but I really liked it. It was interesting to see what it was like in America before we entered the war, before boys were drafted, before we knew what was happening to Jewish residents in Europe, before the horrors.

Currently I'm reading Stieg Larsson's 3rd book. 'The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest'. Every one of his books is very good. The main characters remain throughout all 3 books. (The first 2 were 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' and' The Girl Who Played with Fire'.) They're big, thick books with lots of intrigue and a fair amount of violence.... incase that's not your cup of tea. The minute I finished the second book I went online and prepurchased the 3rd. It arrived Friday so I started it as soon as I was done with whatever I was reading. It picked up exactly where the 2nd left off. I'll be a solid week, or longer, enjoying this book. It's not the kind of thing I can read while doing anything else so it's going to take me longer then normal.

I should have a stitching finish to post soon. We're supposed to get some big rain storms tonight. As long as they don't knock out our electricity I should be able to finish it.

Until then, I'm off.

The Queen Bee