Monday, March 31, 2008

Strange things are afoot at the Circle-K

If anyone has seen the movie "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure", the title to this post is one of my favorite lines in the movie. Yes it is 1:30 AM but the cats and I are awake and wondering what is going on in the area around my house. There are about 10 police cars all around at every intersection and up and down the streets, officers on foot with flashlights, unmarked police cars and now a helicopter with search light. Hmmm must be something really bad. Hope this wraps up soon cause as soon as my laundry is done I'm going to bed. But now I don't want to go to bed until this is over. OK bad guy surrender cause I need to get some sleep!

On a quilty note: after thinking about it all day, I have decided to do my mystery quilt in purple, green, yellow, and black. A Mardi Gras quilt! Will dig through fabrics later in the week even though Bonnie already posted the first step. Ack! I'm already behind.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Weekend wrap up

Well not much accomplished this weekend. Did get into a wee bit o' trouble with Karin and Becky at a trip to Sweet Home Quilt shop. We all met there on Saturday to see the new fabric and try to resist temptation. Becky talked me and Karin into doing an online mystery quilt from the Quiltville website called "Orange Crush" so I bought a some deep yellow (not an "orange" person) and am going to find the rest of the fabric in my stash. Karin bought a book of charm square patterns and of course when I looked at hers, I decided I needed one too. So I have been sufficiently "peer pressured" by my friends and have some projects to start. The rest of Saturday was rainy and I mostly vegged on the couch. Worked at Starbucks this AM and since it is cold and gray, Edgar decided it was perfect weather for this:
(the quilt is a flannel rag quilt and the best for "couch potatoing") So I am going to join him and maybe read the Sunday NY Times or maybe just nap.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Finding spring

Edgar Poe, Stella, Morpheus, and Gomez enjoying spring through the kitchen window.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Post-Easter post

Missed posting yesterday so I hope everyone had a great Easter. I worked at Starbucks all day. We were really busy (not busy like the infamous Easter which is forever known as "Die Bunny Die day" by those who worked that day but busy nonetheless). Guess everyone wanted coffee to go with their Easter candy. Holidays always make me think of holiday dinners at grandma's house. I can tell you what all my relatives in the North were having--ham, homemade rolls, my aunt's jello salad, mashed potatoes or maybe sweet potato casserole with mini-marshmallows, green bean casserole or corn casserole or both, and at least 2 homemade desserts. I had (get ready for this) EASTER PASTA! It was all that was in the pantry. Definitely NOT the same...

Did not finish borders on the quilt I was working on Friday. Did some wool applique though while watching movies. Saw 2 movies this weekend--"No Country for Old Men" and "The Painted Veil". Really liked "No Country" because A) it was a Coen brothers movie and B) the acting was great and C) it captured Cormac McCarthy's storytelling--bleak, stark Western landscapes, ambiguous, no happy ending for anyone. "The Painted Veil" was mostly a disappointment even though it starred Edward Norton and Naomi Watts. It was overly long, could have used some heavy editing, and was predictable in my opinion. I also have been watching "John Adams" on HBO. It's a good series. I especially like Abigail Adams' character played by Laura Linney.

Finished reading Stephen King's latest book Duma Key. Loved it! It was one of his better books that he has written lately. I have read nearly every book he has written (I think he is up to 40 or something). I'm behind on the Dark Tower series but may start over with those. Anyway the theme of Duma Key is exploring the source of art and inspiration with a Stephen King twist. I am now reading a novel called Serpent's Tale about a medieval woman who studies forensics (!) Rather far fetched but readable.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Saturday ramblings

It is a beautiful, warm, sunny Spring day in Atlanta but you won't find me outside because of the POLLEN! I am highly allergic to Atlanta in the Spring (and in the Fall) and it seems to get worse every year (why I still live here, I don't know). I even had allergy shots for about 18 months until I started having really bad allergic reactions to the allergy shots, which my allergy Dr. said was very rare, and had to stop with the shots. What can I say? Someone has to be rare and unique so it might as well be me. I am really not sure what I am supposed to do now to survive pollen season so I think I will stay inside as much as possible. I am determined to avoid yet another trip to the ER because of stupid allergies.

I went to my sewing group (Stitch n' Sisters) last night at the LQS and turned in the completed shop sample (but forgot to get a photo...). I usually attend the Saturday group but since I was in NC that Sat. I went to the 3rd Friday group. It was great to see fellow Sisters I don't get to see much. I worked on a UFO from last year and just have to finish the borders YEA!!! Since I am in "pollen exile" I may get the borders done this weekend. Karin is still cranking out the quilts and making us all look bad. Well off to enjoy the rest of this Saturday.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Stella's Quilt

It's been a really hectic and exhausting week so I'm behind on posting. I finally finished the binding on this quilt (and finally took photos to post). That's Morph enjoying the sunshine.

I made it as a sample for our sewing group at the LQS. The pattern is "Honeyberries" from 40 Fabulous Quick Cut Quilts. It was a really fun quilt to make. It is now Stella's quilt since it matches her fur. A big quilt for a little cat who has a BIG personality.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Patrick's Day

OK so my name is nowhere near Irish, but here's what my Irish name would be (sounds like I could use it as my "stripper" name also).

Your Irish Name Is...
Jade Flynn

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Hooray it's National Quilting Day and surviving storms in the ATL

Well I was not able to get as much sewing in as I wanted to (I had a rather ambitious agenda anyway). If you haven't heard, downtown Atlanta was hit by a tornado last night . Horrible storms were all over the metro area and the lights even flickered at SBux. Well after finally getting to bed around 2:30 AM after watching CNN to find out what was hit by tornado, another big storm came around 3-ish and kept me up with window-rattling wind. Got up late after a fitful night's sleep and had a ton of the usual daily life stuff to do also. I have been checking in on quilty blogs, catching up on 50-zillion emails, and finding out what everyone is working on during Pat Sloan's weekend retreat.

Found out this afternoon from my boss that the tornado skipped over the office building I work in for my Day Job and hit the SunTrust across the park. Some windows in our building were blown out (hopefully not mine because I have stacks of paperwork on my desk...). I guess I'll see the damage on Monday. I was just sick seeing great historic places a little east of downtown that were hit bad--Fulton Bag and Cotton Mill Lofts, Cabbagetown, and Oakland Cemetery--all of which I have either worked on for preservation projects or visited numerous times.

On a lighter note: I must confess that I was bad this week and placed an order with Fat Quarter Shop (one of my fav on-line quilt shops)---one jelly roll and a couple of patterns. Moda really needs to start making some ugly fabric because I am having a hard time resisting the new lines. Come to find out that the line I couldn't resist is the same my friend Karin couldn't resist--"ZaZa". How weird is that? Must find out what she bought and what she is going to do with it. Anyway I already have a big stack o' jelly rolls but HAD to have this one too.

I did get some quilting in and almost have the top done for the LQS shop sample and binding hand sewn on a UFO. Will post photos tomorrow. Off to get some more sewing in before bed.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

10 Seconds of Fame

Woo Hoo! I am momentarily famous--twice! Mark Lipinki has a link to my book review of The Quilter's Catalog on his new blog post for today (it's the last one under Friends and Foes). I'm doing a little happy dance that the Great and Powerful Mark has found my blog (he missed my earlier post about adopting the word Quiltress but that's OK, he's a busy man). I met Mark at Quilt Market in Houston last October (did I mention this already?) and he signed a copy of Quilter's Home for me. Thanks Mark and smooches from an Atlanta pickle!

My earlier moment of famousness is a photo of me and Annie Smith at Quilt Market on her blog and a mention of me from her daughter Kirsten on her podcast about Quilt Market. It was so nice to meet her in person because I am a huge fan of her podcast and think she is just the greatest for starting yet another way to get a quilt fix when you are away from your quilting stuff (like walking to the office or being stuck in traffic). You can also see a photo of my great friend and quilting buddy Becky in the same post.

OK so it doesn't take a whole lot to get me happy dancing but this was a great surprise on an otherwise blah kind of Wednesday.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Book Reviews

I am always reading at least one if not two or three books at a time so I thought I would mention a couple of ones I really enjoyed. Over my long, leisurely weekend, I read a really great quilting book recommended by Mark Lipinski in a recent edition of Quilter's Home. It's called The Quilter's Catalog by Meg Cox. The best way I can think of to describe the book is it is like a really great survey course in college that covers the breadth of a subject and gives you resources to learn more of what you are interested in (I'm thinking of a great art history class I took in undergrad). For one thing, the book is huge--600 pages and covers everything in quilting--history, techniques, styles, fabric, notions, books, Internet sources, bios of famous quilters, and so on. I wish I had this book was available when I first started quilting and couldn't wait to find out everything about my new hobby/passion/obsession. It would be the perfect gift for a new quilter, one of your quilt buddies, or yourself! The book is well written also and I found myself reading it cover-to-cover over the weekend.

Another great book I recently finished is Coal Black Horse by Robert Olmstead. I picked this up after reading a review in The New York Times. If you liked Cold Mountain or books by Cormac McCarthy, you will like this book. The author pulls you into the story of a boy on a journey to find his father during the Civil War with poetic and at times heartwrenching prose. One of the reasons why I liked this book is how the author portrays the Civil War very narrowly through the eyes of the main character, Robey. The reader doesn't get the sense of all the battles, destruction, loss of life, and politics--the big wide picture--but only knows what's going on by the people Robey encounters and the landscape he sees. You are not really sure even where he is going geographically and there is a lot of ambiguity in the book, particularly the ending, which would make it a great book for book clubs as it would lead to lots of discussion and interpretation. I really enjoyed this book and really got wrapped up in reading it.

OK that's my 2 cents on 2 books for now. Up next is the new Stephen King book. Happy reading!

Monday, March 10, 2008

National Quilting Day and more photos

Is everyone getting ready for National Quilting Day this Saturday, March 15th? Don't forget to hug your favorite quilter! Pat Sloan, who is the busiest person on the planet--check out her blog post for today on her "typical" day if you don't believe me--is having an online quilting retreat all weekend. She designed some fabulous fun projects that are available on her website. I plan on working on a few projects on Saturday. I have a shop sample to work on for the LQS and really need to finish Morris Garden. We'll see what else I can get to in my one day off. Can you tell I want it to be the weekend already and it's only Monday????
As promised, here are more photos of my trip. See the snow! And a mountain stream. WIsh I was still there!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Weekend Travels

I am back from a three day weekend in western NC at a lodge in the Great Smokey Mountains. It was a fabulous weekend of relaxing, recharging, reconnecting, reading, sleeping, relaxing some more, and working on wool applique. No TV, no phones, no email, gourmet meals provided, didn't have to go anywhere,
and cookies and Starbucks coffee provided all afternoon. How great is that??!!!???
It was rainy on Friday
and snowed on Saturday and was freezing cold Sunday AM so not much hiking. Did not want to leave and hope to go back in the late summer or fall. Now it's back to the real world....
PS: Blogger is being fussy tonight and not uploading photos well. Will post more photos tomorrow.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Tag and I'm it

Becky tagged me to tell you 7 weird things about me. Hmmm just 7--it's hard to narrow down to just 7.

Here are THE RULES:
Once you are tagged, link back to the person who tagged you.
Post THE RULES on your blog.
Post 7 weird or random facts about yourself on your blog.
Tag 7 people and link to them.
Comment on their blog to let them know they have been tagged.

1. I was born in Germany and that's why I have a German name. My dad was in the army and my parents lived in Wurtzburg, Germany. I had dual citizenship until I was 18 but I have never been to Germany, don't speak German, and don't really like German food except for Black Forest cake LOL! I really would like to go to Germany someday and see all the places I've only seen in photos.

2. I had a brown belt in Tang Soo Do, a Korean martial art, in high school and could kick some major butt. The operative word here is "could", unfortunately that was a loooonng time ago, but I absolutely loved it and wish I had time to get back into some sort of martial arts and get in shape again.

3. I have two bachelor degrees in English (literature) and anthropology.

4. I wanted to be a forensic anthropologist. I really wanted to continue my education in anthropology at the University of Tennessee, which has a premier forensic anthropology program, but decided against it because I couldn't imagine being a broke college student through a doctorate program. So now I watch "Bones" and any other forensic show and read Particia Cornwell and Kathy Reichs.

5. I am a Martha Stewart wannabe. Yes, I know she went to jail, but I absolutely adore Martha and really admire her for all she has done. I Tivo her show, have all her books and magazines, and wish I had her time, money, (and maybe the staff) to do more crafts, garden, decorate, etc. etc. to be more Martha-like.

6. I love to cook everything from scratch and am famous among family and friends for baking--cookies, cakes, pies, bread, you name it. Before I started working so much, I would spend days making at least 20 different kinds of gourmet cookies to package up for people for Christmas. I have cookbooks galore and read them like novels.

7. I can pick up things with my toes--cat toys, pens, paper, magazines. Is that weird?

OK I'm supposed to tag 7 bloggers for this but I think everyone I know has already been tagged so if you haven't been--then you're it!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Crawling out from quarrantine

Well I am FINALLY feeling better after four days in bed and 2 zillion mg. of vitamin C. Thanks to all my friends for the get well wishes. I think the cats enjoyed keeping me company and having me stuck in bed. I am now trying to catch up on life, which seems to have kept rolling along without me....

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Down for the count

Well I guess it was inevitable. Everyone I know has been sick and everyone I don't know has been sick. So it hit me on Friday--an icky cold. I've spent the past 2 days in bed feeling miserable and catching up on Project Runway and that's about all I've felt like doing. Here's to better days.