Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Lamp for child's room

This is a test. I was having trouble uploading pictures. I think I had too many files open as it seems to be working now.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Bobby and the Easter Bunny

Look who we ran in to on Saturday!

You're never too old to enjoy a visit with the Easter Bunny! We found this very friendly bunny outside the Fruitful Yield, our favorite health food store in downtown Elmhusrt. I carry my camera everywhere since Bob gave me this nice little one for my last birthday. 'Photo ops' pop up when you least expect them!

We did our shopping, got lots of samples and a free back massage, in the store. Yipee!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Janey's birthday dress

Janey, after school.

I sent Janey's birthday gift a little late, because I wanted to be sure i was sending the correct size. In the meantime, I realized that Janey is quite an artist, so i decided to include some special pens as part of her gift. My niece Hilary, Janey and Lauren's mom, sent these wonderful pictures and I couldn't resist posting them. So cute...

Little sister Lauren the next day, while Janey was at school.

Steven Wright witticisms

I really enjoyed this, and thought putting it on my blog would be a good way to share it. Enjoy!

If you're not familiar with the work of Steven Wright, he's the famous erudite scientist who once said, "I woke up one morning, and all of my stuff had been stolen and replaced by exact duplicates." His mind sees things differently than most of us do, to our amazement and amusement. Here are some of his gems:

1 I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize.
2 Borrow money from pessimists - they don't expect it back.
3 Half the people you know are below average.
4 99% of lawyers give the rest a bad name.
5 82.7% of all statistics are made up on the spot.
6 A conscience is what hurts when all your other parts feel so good.
7 A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
8 If you want the rainbow, you got to put up with the rain.
9 All those who believe in psycho kinesis, raise my hand.
10 The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
11 I almost had a psychic girlfriend.....but she left me before we met.
12 OK, so what's the speed of dark?
13 How do you tell when you're out of invisible ink?
14 If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked something.
15 Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.
16 When everything is coming your way, you're in the wrong lane.
17 Ambition is a poor excuse for not having enough sense to be lazy.
18 Hard work pays off in the future; laziness pays off now.
19 I intend to live forever.... so far, so good.
20 If Barbie is so popular, why do you have to buy her friends?
21 Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.
22 What happens if you get scared half to death twice?
23 My mechanic told me, "I couldn't repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder."
24 Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?
25 If at first you don't succeed, destroy all evidence that you tried..
26 A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking.
27 Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.
28 The hardness of the butter is proportional to the softness of the bread
29 To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; to steal from many is research.
30 The problem with the gene pool is that there is no lifeguard.
31 The sooner you fall behind,the more time you'll have to catch up.
32 The colder the x-ray table,the more of your body is required to be on it.
33 Everyone has a photographic memory;some just don't have film.
34 If your car could travel at the speed of light, would your headlights work?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Little boys had such cute clothes, didn't they?

I love this picture. Old photographs are such a treasure. This is my father and his little brother circa 1920.
When I was little I played with the toys my grandmother saved from Daddy and Uncle Tom's childhood. How great is that! I still have as many of them as I could hang on to. There are little records, very thick, in beautifully illustrated albums, made like books. Also, a really cool 'musical instrument' that is a player harmonica. I can still remember using it and inhaling a lot of dust. You kind of have to huff and puff into it, while turning the little handle to keep the 'roll' (smaller version of a player piano roll) moving. The thing that I wish I still had is the circus set of wooden animals and props, all jointed. I guess there wasn't room for it in our new house, so it had to go...

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Procrastinating, again . . .

One of the reasons we moved to the first floor (or moved at all) was because the ceiling leaked off and on. Dale (the building fix-it man) tried and tried and tried to have the problem fixed. It had to do with the air conditioning duct work in the ceiling over my suite. Anyway, one weekend there was a serious leak and my sample quilt was ruined. I've been so depressed about it - that I haven't made a new one. I know it doesn't make sense, as I need the sample to get more orders. I took it apart and will wash the parts, but the pictures are permanently stained - so I'm really starting over. Fortunately, I found similar fabric and the end result hopefully, will be the same.
I purchase the blank quilts, then embellish them with photographs, etc. We've sold a lot for wedding anniversaries. This is a 'painless' way to do a quilt and makes it affordable to customers.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Cats take over, again

Amy and George have spent over a year letting the cats and dogs adjust to each other, and it paid off! The cats have now taken over the dog's beds. I guess the dogs have to sleep on the couch - too bad. sometimes they all sleep on the bed. You can see more pictures of my Grand-pets on Amy's blog at mfasblog.blogspot.com.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

House Quilt Block 3 in the rain

Well, I'm cutting little squares again. I am getting better at it, though. I'm starting to feel as though I should re-make Block 1. I've noticed that there are some in our group who are making more than one of a block. Personally, I'm excited to see all the different versions, and can hardly wait to see the assembled quilts!

Adding to today's entertainment, we have rain ... inside. Seems the handle on the toilet upstairs stuck - 'nuf said. Fortunately Joey was here to hear the rain and save the day. He 'unstuck' the handle and assured me that the ceiling will dry and no more water will come down. That's good. No harm done. phew! That was close.

It's Done! QB3! My squares are getting squarer, and my corners straighter. BTW the fabric is a black and white tweed with an evident weave. It 'morayed' in some of the pictures, (like in moray taffeta - I'm not sure how to spell it.) so it looks a little odd, but in 'real life' its cute!

Words of advise to quilters. Don't move your waste basket and fabric bin while you are working. I put mine in the opposite places and, well - you can guess what happened! I've been picking threads off my fabric for a half hour now.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Princess Janey - another birthday

It's so exciting to have a birthday at Janey's age. It's exciting to loose your first tooth, eat birthday cake and celebrate with abandon, to discover your artistic talent, learn to ride a two-wheeler . . . so many things! Children are what family is about, and I'm so glad to have Janey, her little sister Lauren and cousin Oliver, in my family. I wish Marty, my little brother, had lived to see his children grown, and to enjoy his grandchildren.

Signs of Spring

Most people look for robins or forsythia as harbingers of Spring. In Elmhurst, Spring is here when Hamburger Heaven opens for the year. Driving home the other evening, I caught a red light at North Avenue and York Street and observed several people inhaling the exhaust fumes while waiting for their order - Hamburger Heaven is OPEN! It's Spring!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Between 'The Elmhurst Armpit Orchestra' and a Bagpipe band, life is grand!

Elmhurst's St. Patrick's Day Parade is the 3rd largest in Illinois - and we were near the end. You may or may not know this, but DuPage County is a Republican bastion and they're (The GOP) trying very hard to keep it that way!!! Parade units are limited to 10 participants, or maybe 20. The GOP had at least twice that many and - they put the Dems behind the horses. Is that making their position clear? I think so. We (First Congregational Church's Green Team Parade Unit) were told to assemble at 11: a.m., one hour before the step off time. We took our first collective step at 1:30!!, took three steps and stopped. We marched, walked, sauntered for many blocks before we got to the starting point. By that time, lots of people were going the other way on the sidewalks on each side. Two of Bob's grandsons, Sean and Ryan Allen, saved the day by joining us and bringing friends. We were very grateful and they made it so much fun for all the little kids watching the parade! The Clutter Bug was a big, HUGE success! One of my favorite friends, and fellow marcher, suggested that for the next parade, Memorial Day, we have 3 or 4 Clutter Bugs, so all the kids could get to see them up close and personal. We'll see about that.

It's the 16th and three people have already posted there New Block #3 on Forevergreen Quilts web site. I just downloaded the block. I guess I know what I'll be doing the rest of the day!

Friday, March 13, 2009

We Are Parade Ready - YES!

Clutter Bug again . . .

I finished the Clutter Bug today - the parade is tomorrow, and Joey said "You should put some streamers in the front, like flames." I told him we'd save that for the next parade, but I think it's a great idea. He may always be a WIP (work in progress for non-crafters and others with lots of pending projects). I couldn't resist showing two pictures. The close up shows the eye balls (Rick's ping pong balls).

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Boy, was I confused . . .

Yesterday was an odd day - it seemed to last forever. I stay at work until at least 5: most days. It was hard to do that yesterday, but I did. I was tired when I got home, and Bob wasn't scheduled for a meeting so I decided to rest a little before cooking. All of a sudden it was 6:30 and Bob thought he might have a meeting after all. I jumped up and fixed Pasta Vasailia* in 15 minutes! Didn't know I could do that. (*chopped spinach, sauteed onion and garlic in olive oil, over pasta with feta cheese on top.)

The meeting didn't happen, or he decided to go to one tonight instead - so we watched 'Dancing with the Unemployed', as Joey calls it. Were you as shocked as I was, when Melissa was introduced as a last minute replacement? I'm predicting that she will win the prize and marry her dance partner!

OK - back to the 'oddness'. When I got to work this morning I realized that I hadn't changed the clock to DST! Yesterday was an hour longer...

That's OK. I have to leave a little early today, to get some more fabric for the Clutter Bug. It needs extensions on each side. I did the front piece today and adjusted the back, so - it's getting there...

We 'Introduced' it at church Sunday. Pastor Rick thought it would help get volunteers for the parade next Saturday. I got a lot of nice comments about it. Rick said, when I first mentioned it he was afraid it would be lame and he's thrilled that it isn't. (Rick grew up in San Francisco, and has seen lots of Chinese Dragons.)I know I mention my church a lot. I'm very invested in the ministries. In case you want to know, It's First Congregational UCC in Elmhurst, Illinois.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Friday Amusements

Joey checks out the Pink Elephant Resale Shop for 'treasurers' every week. This is his latest find. I like that it's in keeping with the Chinese Dragon Theme we have going on right now.

And for my favorite daughter-in-law, who is the 'Martha Stewart' of our family, the ultimate feather project! Kim and Tom host an annual event they call "Pheasant Fest" and she makes favors for the attendees every year. In the past there have been sweatshirts with pheasants embroidered on, aprons, book marks, and more. She is always looking for ideas for things to make from pheasant feathers.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Close Up of Clutter Bug face sans eyeballs

Pastor Rick is bringing the orange eyeballs, so there will be one more picture later.

Well... it wasn't a total failure, but ...

No. 1 - We need shorter 'workers'. If we can't get the kids to volunteer, we are going to have to recruit new members 5' or under. (and we don't have much time.)
No. 2 - I think the front of the back should be at the back and the back at the front. How's that again? It seems to me that there's not enough 'back' at the back, so - if I turn the back around, and also attach it higher on the head or tilt the head more drastically, maybe ...
Volunteer Testers - New Church Clerk, Pastor Rick, Pastor's wife, Church Moderator. Aren't they good sports? Thanks Bob, for taking the pictures and emailing them so fast. XXX

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Trading fortunes

Bob took me to the Jade Dragon for dinner last night. (Talk about staying with a theme!) It's a small, family owned Chinese Restaurant in Bensenville, one town North of us. We both tried Hunan for the first time and really enjoyed it. Bob had beef and I had chicken. You never know what you'll find when you take time to chat with the waitress! We enjoyed tea and fortune cookies for desert. Bob opened his cookie first and dropped the fortune in his plate. Of course, I couldn't stand not knowing what it said, so I picked it up and read it. Then I told him teasingly that he had taken the wrong cookie and had my fortune. When I read the one in my cookie, I couldn't believe it! I definitely had his cookie. The fortune perfectly described him! How funny is that!

Clutter Bug in progress

Today is the day I am going to finish this ---- thing (you can fill in the blank). It has taken 2 weekends, plus some evenings and one full day of sewing and my fear is - it will look very amateurish! Linda, our Pastor's Wife, said it doesn't matter - it will still be fun and give us 'visibility'. She's great!
I have also done hats and bow ties for all the walkers so, at least they will look 'good'. Bob and I are taking it to church tonight for a test run, so to speak. The idea is that it (the back part) will sort of float and ripple. Tune in tomorrow for the results;o)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

If all else fails, blame it on the kids!

Well - the 'Clutter Bug' head is almost finished. I'm still filling in the back side, but I wanted to get on with the other parts, too. It's definitely interesting. I hope it doesn't look like a grade-school project. If it does, maybe I can say the Sunday School kids made it? I sewed stays in the body, every 18" and connected them with 1" wide ribbon across the bottom to get the curved shape. Then I went back to the Dollar Store for handles. I found dusters, large bubble makers and then - butterfly nets!! They were the winners. They appear to be strong and I can bend the wire to the shape I need. Very good! Now, to put it together and do a test run...