Monday, September 28, 2009

Laptop issues, movies & quilting

I've been given a used laptop by my brother so I can do presentations with my new projector. Somehow, Windows XP and Thinkpad and the presentation director have disabled the F7 key (which I need to make the video output scootch on over to the projector).

Here are two of my technical wizards hard at work. I bought them off with lunch at Timmies. Unfortunately, you get what you pay for and the F7 key still doesn't work.

April's quilt looks beautiful. This was a kit she and her friend purchased. I will be working on her friend's quilt this coming week.

On Saturday we went to the movies with my nephew and his new bride (gosh I love the term 'new bride' - it sounds so romantic) to see Bruce Willis' flic Surrogates. Dinner at Lonestar was first. The nephew works at a kitchen design company and was involved in the kitchen building at this restaurant. When we got to the theatre the bride and I went to the potty. She got all kinds of toilet paper stuck to her shoes from a dirty stall. It was trailing out behind her like something you'd see in a cartoon - too funny!! We pulled it off with paper towels because lemme tell you - she certainly did NOT look the romanticized version of a new bride. The movie was good - very entertaining and not too too gory. And it was lovely catching up with the kids.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Quilts and Cabbage

Here are some lovely quilts I've been hard at work quilting. Slaving over a hot needle. Seriously - the needle in a quilting machine gets hot enough to burn you.

I marked registration lines for the border quilting, just to keep things regular. I used a pounce pad and a 1 1/2" stripe stencil.

The funky Amy Butler got an overall design that I call Amoeba Flowers.

And the raggy flowers has a wiggly s.i.d. between the blocks and along the borders. The overall quilting is a paisley flower, with a big wiggle and circle doodles in the narrow border.

Here is the cabbage I demolished on Tuesday.

Back in the old days before my Oster Kitchen Centre died, I would have made short work of this. I had to resort to the K-Tel Starfrit slicer, dicer, chopper that strips off your knuckles and trims your fingernails (what's a little extra protein between friends?). I was planning to make freezer coleslaw however it seems I misplaced the recipe. I fell back on the old standby 'keeps forever coleslaw'. But I digress - I have ordered, through VISA points, a new Cuisinart blender AND food processor to replace the old ones. I hope they arrive soon.

My story of today:
I went in to the city to get tickets to see the Rockettes at Copps Coliseum. On the way, Taylor Swift's new song 'fifteen' was playing - it's about a fifteen year old girl (g'wan, really?) and there's a line in there about her first kiss. It got me thinking... I remember my first kiss - it was the fella who was boarding at the next door neighbours while he was attending college. He took me to THE DRIVE IN movies to see Woodstock. Mom gave him a big lecture before we left. Anyways, he gave me a little kiss when we got back. I was ... fifteen. And I saw stars. Funny how you remember those things from so many years ago, but have no idea where you left your glasses.

Monday, September 21, 2009

No quilts. Cooking, garden stuff & whining.

I don't have any quilt photos for you today. Sorry, I know that's why most of you show up here - eye candy of the quilty kind.

Tonight I used up what I thought would be my last zucchini to make Charlies Beef & Zucchini something-or-other. It was very very good, served over brown rice. It's just browned hamburger, diced zucchini with a couple cloves of garlic, simmered in tomato sauce with Italian seasoning. Then you add a cup of shredded cheddar and let it melt. mmmm. DH hates it (that may have something to do with the quantity of zucchini in the dish?), so he had his 'comfort food' of sliced potatoes layered with bacon and baked for a couple hours.

However, it is so warm out I may be able to wring another zucchini or two out of the z-patch. About 20 cups of sliced carrots have gone in the freezer now so we should eat well all winter. As long as you consider living on zucchini, green beans, carrots, and plum sauce 'eating well'. If you add enough martinis I suppose that could work?

I'm a little bummed out because my dinner out with a friend scheduled for tomorrow has been cancelled. hmph! I've already planted all the wonderful hosta that my friend Sue let me dig out of her garden. It's supposed to rain tomorrow so I can't/won't go out tending the garden. I really don't want to get desperate enough that I feel the need to dust the house. Maybe I'll get back to the rug braiding that I haven't touched since May?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Long Lost American Friend (and zucchini)

Back in 2000 I met Deby from Ohio when we both attended MQS and were 'fixed up' as roommates. She & her hubby are in Toronto for a few days so she & I got together to do some catching up on each other's lives. And we hit a couple quilt shops, a couple antique stores, a carpet store, and the Cheesecake store.

I've been on a fabric moratorium this year - it seems I fell off yesterday. But I DID find a copy of Wearable Arf that I've been searching for since April.

Zucchini added to the freezer: another 12 cups. And two more zucchini loafs - total 12.

The garage doors are painted, the air still stinks (so does the poor dog!) and the green beans are picked and in the freezer. I've had enough of green beans for the freezer. They're spilling out over the top whenever I open the door like some Chinese sci-fi flick.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Stinky in Caledonia - update

CRAP air update: I spoke to the Ministry of Environment this morning. Ms. Ministry was initially incorrect in her information to me. The 'product' going on the farm field is Hamilton's Green Bin Compost. The farmer can buy it 'off the shelf' (so to speak) so it is not regulated by the MOE. After this is spread, farmer brown will be spreading Nutrapel (sp?) which is a highly treated, pelleted sewage sludge. This is also 'off the shelf' and is not regulated by the MOE. Only after these two products have been spread will they be tilled in to the soil (which will knock down the odour substantially).

This means I am shit-out-of-luck. No pun intended. Both items have incredibly noxious odours and the wind just keeps blowing towards our property. Why couldn't they spread nice friendly horse manure? (seriously - that usually does have a sort of pleasant country odour)

This afternoon I MUST go out and put the second top coat on the garage doors. I sure hope my olfactory gland gets very tired very quickly and stops noticing the stink. Makes me feel like I wasted my time washing my hair this morning.

I don't want to leave you feeling like I'm totally grumbly today. Funny marriage story:
Back in the early years of our marriage I was cooking a turkey, likely around Thanksgiving. I could not, for the LIFE of me, find the turkey baster.
Me: "Honey, have you seen the turkey baster? I can't find it it any of the drawers."
DH: "Yea, it's downstairs on my work bench."
Me: "What??? Why?"
DH: "I needed it for the car."
Me: " " (silence)

Last weekend I wanted to wash out the cast iron frying pan that had leftover burnt hot dogs in it (a true gourmet weekend!). I normally don't use soap on the cast iron, just hot water and a plastic pot scrubber. You guessed it, I could not find the pot scrubber.
Me: "Honey, have you seen the pot scrubber? I can't find it anywhere."
DH: "Yea, it's in the garbage."
Me: "What??? Why?"
DH: "I needed it for the toilet."
Me: " " (silence)

There are some questions you just shouldn't ask.

And I'll leave you with one of my postcards.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Margaret's Quilt, Challenge, CRAP (ick)

My friend Margaret (of the Kawartha Retreat Margarets) had me quilt her mooses (moosi? moose?).

It's flannel top and back so it is really really soft & cuddly.

We've got a challenge going between four of us, and this Christmas Quilt is mine.

I got the top together at guild sewing day on Wednesday. Yaay! Now to get it quilted before the end of October (next retreat date and DEADLINE). These blocks came from two years of guild Birthday Club and one year of Tinner Club. I used a Christmas border print from Northcott Fabrics, both to frame the blocks (which were all different versions of 12" finished - who knew measurements could be so... elastic?) and for the outer border.

I also had to help out a nice lady with her quilt emergency . She'd started quilting this herself on her sewing machine and realized she'd NEVER finish it in time for her mom's birthday. I had her leave in the basting, and her border quilting. I added the circles and the (invisible) s.i.d. in the log cabin blocks.

I've had a particularly CRAPPY Thursday and Friday. Here's a pic of farmer brown 'fertilizing' his field. This smelled suspiciously like sewage sludge from the City of Hamilton (yes, unfortunately I DO know what that smells like).

On Thursday I called the Ministry of Environment to find out what his Certificate of Approval said as far as incorporating this stuff into the soil. Because he wasn't incorporating it. So the nice Ministry lady tells me there has been no C of A issued, AND he's been given a cease & desist & dispose of order (like a week ago). On Friday Ms. Ministry & Friend came out and had a talk with Bad Mr. Tractor Driver. Then she & friend left and he kept on spreading. I was the typical nosy neighbour peering out the window with my binoculars. Embarrassing, I know. Later that afternoon a Ministry Pickup Truck was out talking to Bad Mr. Tractor Driver. I must call Monday and get an update. It smells so bad I haven't been outside for two days. I really need to get at the garage doors, which need their top coats. Gosh, I can't wait to spend hours & hours outside in the nasty air. Anyone wanna come help???

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

First Day of Guild

The garage doors have a coat of primer on them. So do I but that's another story. Had I known the primer was such a good colour I would not have bothered with top coat.

Because I was busy with the doors, I skipped a day of garden harvest - mistake. HUGE mistake. I have now picked enough green beans to support the Jolly Green Giant for 6 months. And another four zucchini.

Today is the opening season of the Caledonia Quilters Guild. Since I'm the primary Program Person (really, there should be a better title for that job) it will take me half the day to load up my car. I have the guild quilt we've made for the Fair Board, I have a survey and three signup sheets, I have the tiny bag sample for a Secret Sister Exchange, my Dirty Dozen Challenge quilt (we're doing a review of them all), the Morning Out Quilt Class sample in case any of the gals are interested in a class. I still have to assemble my sewing stuff for the sewing day and make my lunch. And what am I doing??? Blogging. Very bad allocation of time resource, wouldn't you say?

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Lovely weather and very little quilting

A whole week with no rain. What the hell??? What have I been doing this week when I should have been quilting?

OMG - who is that masked man? And what is he doing to the paint on the garage doors?

Slow down Nellie. He's taking the paint OFF so you can put it all back on.

Yes, it appears I gave up on my artistic relatives and painted my own mailbox. The flowers are not so great, but I love the numbers. Even if I do say so myself.

Ribfest in Burlington was very very crowded. But the pulled pork sammich was very good, and the fries were excellent.

Mr. Hawk showed up for brunch.

We've had another 'incident' with the universe. I stood by, sobbing, as DH took my parrafin bath out to the garbage can. My poor hands will have to settle for self manipulation with olive oil (that sounds really kinky, doesn't it?). That was the same night I was whipping along stitching up a ragtime quilt when the whole tension assembly fell out into my lap. The 'F' word was floating around a lot that night. Hubby managed to fix the tensioner quick as a wink, so thank goodness for him.