Friday, November 30, 2007

Paying It Forward

I signed up for "Paying It Forward" on Nurhanne's blog.

At first I was hesitant about signing up, because I thought that with so much going on in my life right now, there is no way I've got time to do something like that. Then I thought, hey, it's a whole year to send three things out, I can do that!

Here are the guidelines:

I will send a handmade gift to the first 3 people who leave a comment on my blog requesting to join this PIF exchange. I don’t know what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within 365 days, that is my promise! The only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog.

It's a little open ended, in that there's not any kind of guideline as far as value, etc, but then again that's very freeing.

So, if you'd like to participate, be one of the first three people to leave a comment on my blog, and then make the same promise on your blog.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Why are we doing this again?

I just realized that in the chaos of everything that's been going on, I neglected to post pictures of why we're remodeling that bedroom:

This 14' longarm quilt machine is going to go in there!

I'm very excited about it. I'd stopped making quilts because I knew that I didn't have a chance in hell of quilting a bed-sized quilt on my Bernina sewing machine. I struggle with crib-size quilts, and there's just no way I'd wrestle anything bigger.

Here's another view, with my parents' trailer in the background:

They brought the machine (disassembled into long pieces) in that trailer from southern Utah all the way here!

And here I am, with the new machine:

I haven't used it much even though it's set up in the garage, because the garage is not the cleanest place in the world and I don't want to get things all messy. Not to mention that it's really cold here right now! I can't wait to get it moved into that room. My family might not see much of me once it's all set up. ;-)

It's not actually a "new" machine--one of my best girlfriends bought it about five years ago, and her back has deteriorated to the point where she can't stand for more than a few minutes, much less quilt. (It really bites. She's one of the most generous people I know, and I hate that she's in so much pain.)

And just because there haven't been many kitty pictures lately, here's one of Squiggy, curled up on the mud-scraping cleaning mat:

It just amazes me that he likes to sleep there! It's NOT the least bit soft.

Have a great week, everyone!

Light at the end of the tunnel

The floor is in!!!

And here's what we had left over:

Yep, that's one board. The scrap pile is quite small, too--maybe 10 pieces of boards.

And here's Greg putting in the trim around the new closet:

And you can also see the beautiful floor that continues into the closet.

And here's one of my projects in progress:

It's a shawl pattern I'm testing, so I don't want to show too much detail. I'm using some of the new KnitPicks' Harmony needles, and really liking it!

I'm exhausted so that's all for now.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Look what we did!

We've been working pretty hard on the quilt-studio-to-be, and we had a little help:

We cleaned and cleaned and cleaned the floor, and finally we were ready to lay down the bamboo flooring:

And here's the most awesome husband in the world, with 38" of flooring put down:

And a gratuitous close-up:

The tape is on there to keep the joints together while the glue dries.

We're SO excited! Hopefully tomorrow we'll get the rest of the floor laid, then we'll be able to start moving in the quilt machine. We'll probably break it down and leave it in pieces for a day or two, and put in the trim and doors. I hope to be able to set the machine back up on Sunday or Monday, and then look out, because I'm going ot quilt up a storm!!

Greg is talking about putting bamboo flooring in the hallways and living room, now that we've gotten over our anxiety over gluing it down. Look out, we're dangerous now!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Green is GONE!!

Before I offend anyone further (because I've been getting a lot of either "oh, that's such a pretty color, why are you getting rid of it?" and/or "I just painted my bedroom that color"--three people have said that), I should explain about why I dislike the green color my sewing room used to be.

When we first looked at this house, all of the rooms were decorated very nicely in well-coordinated schemes.

Then we moved in, and none of our stuff worked with any of the color schemes in the house. NONE OF IT. I've also discovered a few things about myself after living in a house with some very strong colors:
  1. I don't LIKE strong colors on all the walls--I don't like the way it changes the feel of the light in a room, and it makes it very hard to bring other non-neutral elements into a room;
  2. I (and my hubby) like to change rooms around with some frequency. Having a very strong color on the walls makes it hard to shuffle things around from room to room; and
  3. With the exception of blue, I don't like cool colors on walls. The green in that room was NOT a warm green and was quite gray, actually. I like warm colors on my walls, darn it!
  4. This room is going to become my quilt studio, and I need a more-neutral color on the walls. The light reflecting off the green walls was messing with things like thread-color selection unless I had my Ott light going or was near the window.
I find it incredibly ironic that the exact same color we've just painted over is THE color of the moment. I'm just so sick of looking at it not going with any of our stuff, and it's been entirely too dark for me. This is one of the more-accurate pictures of the color, and pretty much all that's left of the green color:

Oh yeah, except for this beautiful bit of painting (major sarcasm) :

Of course that's two layers of bad paint jobs, the dark green and the beige. I'll be taking a razor to the window and attempting to take off as much beige and dark green paint as I can. Or not--luckily the blinds cover the vast majority of it, which is probably why it's still there. If I don't see it, it won't drive me nuts.

As of this evening, here's how the room looks:

We've gone through two gallons of primer and we'll probably use most of a third bucket. The green color is really cold (as in the color temperature), and we want to make sure all of that cool undertone is gone before we start putting the new paint on there or else it'll look kind of grayed too.

The previous owners also painted the ceiling fan blades, which threw them totally out of balance. The fan couldn't be going any faster than the lowest setting or it wiggled and danced so badly that the end of the pull chain would go in huge circles and bang the glass light parts that I'm surprised they hadn't broken. I don't understand why people paint things like ceiling fan blades, light switches (not just the covers, but the switches), and outlets. I think the previous owners were allergic to masking tape or something, because I've seen no evidence that they knew how to use it.

We've ordered a new set of blades and they should be here on Monday.


My wonderful, and very generous, Aunt Louise sent a package for Greg and my birthdays. Here's a bad picture, taken after most of the chocolate candies have been enjoyed:

Be sure to click on the picture to see the beautiful jewelry and goodies.

We're just overwhelmed at all the goodies in this package! On the top of all of that was a bag with this luscious yarn:

I have no idea yet what I'll do with it, but there's enough to do a lacy sweater, probably! Pretty exciting!!

And I couldn't resist taking this picture:

Beautiful stamps, aren't they?

Thank you, Louise!


I could go on and on--I'm so behind in my blogging--but since we have lots more painting to do tomorrow and it's 1:00 in the morning, I'll spare you for the moment.

Have a great weekend!

Monday, November 05, 2007

Busy busy busy

I'm still here, just very busy!

There's a LOT going on here, and I'll post about in a few differnt postings. First up, here are our "creep cakes" we made for Halloween:

I couldn't find my cake-decorating tips, so I was stuck using a knife to try to swirl the color I wanted where I wanted it. The kids and I had fun making these. My favorite is the zombie (third row down, second from left) with the brown jelly-bean teeth.

We finally broke down and bought a "Bag A Nut" device for picking up pecans, and I'm thrilled with how well it works! We haven't had to rake this year, and it's been a lot faster so far to pick them up.

The other huge project we've got going right now is remodeling the back bedroom, and here's a picture of the progress as of yesterday afternoon:

I can't WAIT to get rid of that green color!! It'd be one thing if our decorating scheme went along with it, but it really really doesn't. It's incredibly dark and I find it hard to live with. Yay for beige!

In kid news, Gillian lost her first top tooth and in addition to having a really cute smile, now she's got a bit of a lisp, too. The other top front one is loose, so it could get really intersting once it comes out, too!

What a couple of hams!

I've got a lot more to talk about and a lot more pictures to show, but not tonight--I still have to get the guild newsletter out and finish my swatches for the workshop coming up this weekend with Joan Schrouder.

Happy knitting, and hopefully more posting tomorrow.