Feb 27, 2016

Around here.........

 Around the house this week----

Skyler thinks he is hiding but I can see him!  Now you can too.

I had a ton of laundry to do Wednesday.  Skyler was waiting for warm clothes but at this point all he got was socks!

Of course, Oscar can't stand it when Skyler is getting some attention and he is not.

Skyler stands his ground and Oscar leaves to join me in the living room once I get the pjs dealt with.

I was working on the notebook on the kitchen table the day I took this.  It is one of Sky's fav spots to get away from the dog.

I wish I had gotten the camera out this morning though.   Oscar was waiting on the loveseat for me to get out of the shower.  At some point he pulled that precious blue wool throw off the back of it.  Skyler has been sleeping on it at night so smells like cat.  When I came out of the bathroom, Oscar had pulled it down to the floor and had wrapped himself up in it to the point where all I saw was a doggy shaped lump and the tip of his nose.    Silly dog!

Well another week has rolled along and this awful month is about gone.  I say awful because of the anniversary of DJ's passing and funeral, a unwillingly single Valentine's Day mostly.  Usually the weather is horrid too.  Well, some days are and other days you are reminded that yes, spring is coming and not all that far off.  When Oscar and I walk, we pass under and near the row of Bradford Pears at the south end of the lane near the subdivision entrance.  The buds are just waiting to open.  I have seen some tulip trees in flower this week.  This morning we had had frost overnight.  I had no expected that it was going to be that cold so it surprised me.   It has turned into a lovely day---in the low 60's, less windy than the past couple days and clear blue skies.

We had two quite rainy, stormy days early in the week.  Tuesday morning, I emptied 2 inches of rain from the gauge.  Wednesday, 3 inches.  There was flooding in spots in the county, not surprising with that much rain on saturated ground.  It was also quite windy, overnight Wednesday with the storms but it continued.  Gusts 30 some mph making it feel colder than it was.  Oscar and I get thrown off his routine with the rain and storms.  Naturally,  he wants no part of the wet ground and turns around and hops back in his crate to keep me from making him go out in the back yard.   He doesn't like the rain, wind or thunder INSIDE the house either.  High pitch whining ensues.  Skyler, on the other hand, doesn't head for under the bed near as often when the storms come.

I've not touched my partially done quilt top since Sunday.  I put the machine up as I knew I would not get to it on Monday---eye doc appointment and a few errands to run.  Besides, we had Bama Belles sew day on Tuesday and I had to pack up for that.   I thought maybe today but my plans changed with a phone call from Jane last night.  Now, it's 3 pm as I write this and not likely to happen.

Tuesday, we had planned a sew day and the girls wanted to try the Ribbon Candy block they liked in the Gudrun Erla book Strip Your Stash.  I had taken the book with me to an earlier meeting in January because we are always looking for ideas of what you can do with 2 1/2 inch strips.   Trust me, that book has several ideas for that.  It is rare for me to like and what to make as many of the quilts that are in a quilt book as this one.   That Square Dance block I finally finished is from there and is featured on the cover of the book.  Only need 5 more, LOL, and I'll have enough for a donation top.

Anyway, the girls brought their machines.  I had cut white background fabric enough for 5 quilts.  The girls brought 2 1/2 inch strips to share.  We were happy to have two of the girls that have been with us before back for the day and one guest from the JOY group.  In addition, another stopped by on the way to work to see what we were up to.  I think I told you that another of the girls (Brenda) just retired and she can come back to join the group.  We were table mates.

This is a top that Lois made before the sew day with an interesting setting.   The book shows 8 blocks and set on point but I really like this version!

Here is a picture of the day's output looking from one direction on the two long tables.

And looking back from the opposite end.  

There will be more!  Brenda had 4 more planned.  Aline was going to make a dedicated quilt with the ones she made----those sort of citrus looking colors you see on the left of the shot above were a few of them as well as the two in the foreground.   I'm going with a purple and pink sort of theme for a dedicated one as well though I picked up a few of the ones the others made that might work in it.  I've got this purple, pinkish, orange butterfly print for the setting triangles and am picking strips that will go with it.  I still need to finish those and one Jane handed to me partially done.  I think she was stitching more at home though since they would be a fun one for donation quilt for one of her other quilt groups.  Beverly was our champion presser and un-sewer.

We had a wonderful potluck lunch with sort of picnic theme.  Lois made some wonderful pork barbecue and others brought potato salad, corn salad, coleslaw, some yummy homemade bread and butter pickles,  fresh fruit, Milo's iced tea to drink.  Desserts were homemade blueberry pie and I had made a pan of those Quick and Easy Oatmeal Carmelitas.   The leftovers are in my freezer for another day!  What a fun day though!  Good friends, good fellowship and good food.  Does it get any better than that.

Some of the girls went on to the Tuesday afternoon group at the church near here but I went home to my two neglected critters.  I'll go this coming week along with my machine and try to get back to my half done Jolly Bar top.  The Ribbon Candy blocks can wait till the next Belles meeting.  We'll decide how we want to set them, combine the colors and see if we need to add another color or make a few more to have enough.   They look good block to block too.   Lois said she had flipped them sort of zigzagged too when she did her top.

Today, as I had said, my plans changed.  I thought maybe I'd do a bit of cleaning around my messy house.  BUT Jane called last evening and asked me to accompany her to the Ashville Quilt Shop and then run up to Gadsden to eat lunch.  Clean or Girlfriend Day??  I think you know what I decided!  Jane and Aline are on the guild's Sew-In committee and needed to ask the shop for a door prize contribution.  We did do a bit of personal shopping too though.   The quilt shop is in St. Clair County, Gadsden is in Etowah County just north of us in Calhoun County so we were all over the Alabama country side, LOL.  Actually we stopped in Rainbow City and ate at El Tapatio there rather than drive all the way into Gadsden.  Chicken Enchiladas Suizas for me though they sure didn't taste like mine!

Even though I had recently made a Mexican version of Cheeseburger Soup  I love Mexican food.  My variation involves omitting the potatoes, celery and carrots in the original and then subbing brown rice, corn, black beans, tomatoes, mild green chiles along with more traditional chili seasonings and way less cheese and more broth.  I call it "Mexican Cheese Soup".  I shared this with my neighbors along with some of that cheese bread that had pulled from the freezer.  I've really not done much cooking this week unless you count a little personal bread bowl pizza or roasting a couple sweet potatoes.

A little reading---I enjoyed What Stands in a Storm by Kim Cross.  Non-fiction, it is about the horrible tornado outbreak in Alabama back on April 27, 2011.  Sad, yet hopeful.  The science is right our weather dude said and he and his station are featured in the book.  It is not some stupid national news anchor saying that the storms came without warning.  We had plenty of warning that a possibly generational intense outbreak was coming.   There a lot of fatalities in several states in that outbreak but perhaps none as bad as Alabama in those strings of storms.  There were 9 here in the north end of my county and 14 in St. Clair, lost that day but part of a larger 240 some, I think statewide.  We drove past one of the areas today on the way to the quilt shop and the land and trees are still scarred by this onslaught.  After, that heavy reading I was on to a romance novel by Cindy Myers called The View From Here that the bookmobile lady (also named Linda) had saved for me.  About half done with it.

Guess that's about it for this installment.  Oscar is going to want to go out walking soon though both he and Skyler as sunning in front of the open front door at the moment.  All I have to do is say the words "Oscar!  Walkies?" and he'd be up like a shot.  That or open the refrigerator, LOL.  Skyler has the lead position right smack dab in front of the door but then it is HIS house.  The dog is allowed to live here, according to him.

Hope you are having a lovely weekend, doing something you enjoy.  THX for stopping by------


  1. I remember that massive April storm only too well. I still drive by places where the landscape was changed in a moment. I watched the coverage when the tornado hit the EMA building in Tuscaloosa - knowing that a friend was working there that day. (They went to the basement before it hit and no one in the building was injured - but the building was gone! And they had to dig out.)
    I love the top Lois made- I may need to figure out that pattern and make it myself. Your Square Dance block is great too. Both of them look fairly easy, but the overall look will have a lot of punch.

  2. Oh, the power of Mother Nature!! I have photos that we took after the Northridge earthquake here in California - and they still terrify me. There was three-story apartment building near where we used to live - and the entire first floor collapsed - making it look like a two-story building. Twisted metal and blown-out windows everywhere - not to mention the loss of lives.

    On a lighter note - I like that Square Dance block and the Ribbon Candy one would be fun to play with layout-wise. Your critters are cute as usual - and I have alreay downloaded your recipe for Carmelitas - a girl can never have too much caramel - ;))


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