Wednesday, June 29, 2011

It's a dirty job......

....but somebody has to do it.  Turns out it's me.

I spent most of this morning wallowing in the dirt in our badly neglected garden.  Not this part of the weedy mess garden.

But this part.  Finally!  Dirt, mulch, plants, and plates. Yay!   Next project is to paint the mailbox and post.  It's way overdue.

This is my favorite.  :-)

And to go with the "theme" I moved this cute wind chimey thing my brother's family gave me, from the porch to the garden.  I'm sure I've now cemented my reputation as the neighborhood crazy lady.  LOL

While I worked planting, lugging mulch, and digging in the plates, all around me I could hear the birds and cicadas, ducks splashing in the pond, toads and frogs.  Nice.  :-)

The squirrels aren't the least bit deterred by the uncut weeds lawn.

A couple of weeks ago The Tramp hacked down the huge azaleas that were blocking the view from the front window.  

How fast they re-sprout!  And will have to be trimmed again before we know it.  Ah well.

Tuesday morning I picked up Mom on the way to our quilting bee.  Around the corner from her house we experienced a traffic hold-up.  What IS that in the road???

Well darned if it wasn't a large male peacock, in full plumage, strutting slowly down the road with a line up of cars carefully going around it.  (Not counting of course the driver a few cars behind me madly honking his/her horn at us all.)  This is the stretch of road down by our old house and we often heard roosters but I'm sure we never heard peacocks.  Their call is very distinctive.  I wonder where in the world it could have come from?

As for sewing news, Monday I whipped up my swap blocks and got them out the door.

Monday evening I finally sat down with this Aunties Two pattern for flip-flops I bought at Symposium.  The clamps are off but the shoes are banished to the back porch until the Shoe Goo glue cures enough to stop smelling so bad!  I also made some yoyos to decorate them but I can't bear to sew them on yet.  Ugh.

I've been browsing Craigslist for a parrot playstand for Charlie to have up here in the Sandbox, and yesterday one showed up in my price range...finally!  (Cheap.)  Even better, it's brand new and unused.  Maisy approves but it remains to be seen if Charlie will.  Maybe we'll get a chance to try it out tomorrow.

Tonight we took a fast trip to the Apple Store to get a new case for my iPhone.  I had the free one Apple gave out which I didn't like much but it served the purpose, protecting the phone and fixing the really annoying drop in connectivity that caused Apple to give out the free cases in the first place.  What I hated about it most was that I couldn't get it off the phone when I needed too.  Grrrrr.

A few days ago The Tramp came home with this neat gift for me.  :-)  A Splash O2 Lite rechargeable extended battery pack and case for my phone.  I love it....most of the time.  It feels nice and it really does work well but for some situations it makes the phone a bit heavy to lug around.  And I don't need the extra battery life every day all day long, though it's fabulous when I do.  

So now I have this!  Cute, cute, cute....but I chose it mostly because it's easy on and off when I want to switch to the Splash case.

Maisy is singularly unimpressed.  (Unless of course I'm careless with it and she decides it's a good chew toy.  :-p)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Where has this week gone?

Really!  Where did it go???  I did a bit of blog reading but obviously not a lot of blog writing.  :-)

After the grands left on Monday I started on a memory quilt for Patchwork Memories.  It was a first for me and took quite a bit of time.  Cutting lots of the pieces out of baby clothes is a bit tricky, to say nothing of the sewing.  Knits, velours, corduroys,  soft "baby" denim, twills, and lots of appliques to fussy cut around.  But it's done, and ready to go back to Julianne for the border and quilting.

Stardust has turned two-months old and I'm hoping she may be coming for a visit soon!  Oh my.....that means I have a baby quilt to finish!

They are a very photogenic family.  Though I admit to being a bit biased. :-)

No less photogenic is Charlie.  The Sailor Son gave me the Grands little cereal boxes and I filled them up with colored paper, Cheerios and peanuts for Charlie to forage.

He had a blast ripping it apart and finding the goodies.  A parrot pinata?

Our latest fun with Charlie is taking him in the shower with us.  At the recent bird show we bought a suction cup gadget that sticks nicely to the shower wall.

Then I move the gadget to the vanity mirror while I complete the rest of my toilette.  Oh the indignity of it all!  Taking his picture while he looks like a drowned bird. Charlie isn't sure about that other bird in the mirror either.   As I snapped photos I suddenly realized my own just-showered self has a reflection too (duh) and quickly moved myself out of camera range. LOL

Those feathers hold a lot of water.  When he shakes it's like standing next to a shaking dog!  But we had a nice cuddle in a towel.  Well I thought it was nice, Charlie didn't have much of a say in it.

This quilt is finally getting basted and ready for quilting.

Of course when I got almost finished I discovered the batting is a few inches too short.  Sigh....I'll fix it tomorrow.

A while ago I bought this magazine with an article by Helen Stubbings on her method of coloring quilts called Colourque (culla-kay).

I've been fascinated with the technique ever since I first heard of it and today I finally bought the Derwent Inktense pencils Helen uses.  The local Michaels was out of stock, primarily they said because of a rash of shoplifting.  The clerk said they lost a lot of stuff.  :-(   But they gave me a rain check so I could still use my 50% off coupon and even phoned me when the pencils came in.  Very nice!  Now I need to quilt up a whole-cloth something so I can color it in.  :-)

The other purchase of the day was this issue of Quilting Arts I had browsed through yesterday at Barnes & Noble.  I actually stood there and took notes on my phone because of a particular article on quilted portraits.  Today on a fast trip through JoAnn's I saw it again and decided what the heck.  Just buy it....and it was on sale....and I had a coupon.  Works for me!

Last night I played with the Photoshop technique shown in the article (from the notes on my phone...gotta love them phones).  I spent a couple of hours going through the nearly (GASP!) 20,000 photos on my computer trying to find some to play with.  Apparently I don't take very many "portraits".  One of these might work to start with.  What I really need to do is find my Photoshop book.  :-)  Hmmmmm.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Father's Day weekend

This weekend the Sailor Son brought the grands down for an overnight visit.  I made a simple pillow out of pirate fabrics and had the boys help me stuff it and wrap it.  Grand #1 is very much into pirates so he couldn't contain himself waiting for the gift to be opened.  He spilled the beans several times during dinner about the "pirate pillow present."  :-)  Sailor Son was pleased though and didn't mind posing with it.

And Grand #1 just had to wear his dad's Spongiest Dad pin.

They are good boys and we thoroughly enjoyed their antics.  It looks like I'm gritting my teeth but we are loudly saying "CHEESE!"

I carried the Father's Day gifts and toys down to Mom and Dad's house in my Schlepping Bag.  The grands found another use for it.  :-)

We slapped around in Mimi's flipflops.

Danced in Daddy's shirt.

Showed our toys to Papa.

Discussed sleeping in buckets with Nanny.  (you had to be there)

 Fed the ducks and turtles.

Slipped and dunked our foot in the pond.

Then offered it to the turtles.

And all in all had a really great time.  Sunday we stopped at Walmart to get them new summer pajamas and they were thrilled with Green Lantern and Spiderman sets.  Grand #2 spent most of Sunday telling us, very seriously, "Me Batman!" and correcting us when we used his name.  On Monday, because he had was wearing a Spiderman shirt it was, "Me Spiderman!"  But of course Spiderman is hard to say when you're only 2 so it comes out as "Ironman."  The Sailor Son straightened me out on this point.  LOL  It seems life revolves around superheros right now.  Woe to those of us who are ignorant!  :-)

We also checked out the bird house.  We're up to four!

Before they had to leave at mid-day we managed to get in lunch at Barry's Cafe where I had to explain no we couldn't play with the firefighter memorabilia on display, a trip to the bookstore, where of course we played with the wooden trains rather than looked at books.  :-)  And a short visit to the park for a some time on the "fwing!" before it got too hot.  So happy in our Batman Crocs and Transformers shirt.  Oh to be young!