Sunday, May 27, 2018

The O'Quilt Week in Review...

Carol..presented the very first finish of our purple challenge.
Yeah!!!  Carol...Great job!!

Friday I had lovely lunch with 2 fellow travelers... a wonderful comfort.
Tonight I got all involved with my online quilting community,
put my sandwich on broil and almost burned the house down.

Ms Stephanie has been sick for a week.
The darlings have done some laundry and sweeping plus their regular chores.

Temper snit Thursday morning as I put elephants on the back of the potholder Lynsey made for her teacher.
She said the teacher was not the elephant type..OMG
She put on such a nine year old fit, that I had to redo the potholder.
When she came home from school, she said thank you...
it meant so much to have the foxes..instead...
Really.???..poor Grandma.
School thank you presents are all made now...

Third grade girl drama continues as Lynsey's best friend tells her she is sorry that she was ever her friend. Lord only knows what Lynsey says in return...
The school counselor frequently intervenes with lessons of compromise.

Second grader, Dylan came home with a hundred dollar bill that his best friend in school gave him.
The friend said that his father gave it to him and he had many it was  ok..
Dylan hid it under his brother's bed, so I would not find it.
He had planned to buy his 8 year old self an X-box like his brother's.
This morning it went back to the school counselor in an envelope...
She had called me in the first place to give me the heads up.. 
My son, who is doing so well now, told Dylan...that the only way to make money is to earn it.

What have I been doing?  Hard to go to bed at night and hard to get up in the morning.
Grief still steals the show.
Because of the above mess in sewing room number two
I have had to make sewing room number three
 Clutter free cutting table all set up on the porch.
Making flannel pillowcases for a friend with Bulbar onset ALS
UGH, that beast, ALS
Lucky me went to the JoAnn's sale...finding flannel for $2.a yard with the coupons.
A special lunch with a beautiful, charming and smart lovely lady on so made my day.
I just love this backing.
Was so depressed tonight missing my man..that I had to buy a bit from the 
Memorial Day sale on Equilter...I know he would understand...!!!!

Six days until my girl comes to visit.
My son has been coming every week to cut the grass...saving me tons of money.
He dealt with his sons on the hair cut deal and even paid for them.
He is doing some construction work now...TBTG
Methadone is a miracle to me.
He cannot afford medical detox...shame on our country
The almost 13 year old...hanging with his friends trying out things  his grandma does not approve of.
So grateful his daddy is back in the picture.

Making some changing pads and little bags for babies.
Easy and relaxing...not our babies..TBTG..
For the first time in a year, I went to Costco by myself.  I did not park in the handicapped
spots. I bought small things  like batteries, pineapple and baggies...
I walk slowly and a bit off balance...but really???
I walk...and I walk without a cane...

I watched this TED talk on joy.
I loved it.
How to Find Joy

We have had tremendous rain in Charlotte.
Before it comes, it is so relaxing to read a book on the deck.
Nice to report happy.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

The Foxglove, sewing and cutting grass....etc.

There was no school on Wednesday in order to support teachers/
My son came by to see his family.
Just look...for Mother's Day came a Foxglove.
He had kept it in his tent...He brought it from his tent in the pouring rain,
to the train station, on the bus to our bus stop.
Just for me!!. I am more than touched.
My cup runneth over.
 Eight year old Dylan had his first grass cutting lesson
 Where does time go??? Eamon started cutting grass at age 9.
Now he is teaching his son.
I finally finished my "quilt in the box"  a Wednesday night challenge from a few years ago.
I always love to see how different colors change the look
Mine was done with Civil War reproductions.
From Terri
From Marie
A binding finish...quilted by Terri...xo

I cannot figure out why I am so exhausted.
I had my physical last week.  The blood work came back just fine.
Answers...dear friends...answers!!!

OK..guess I am not that after sleeping all day,  I made myself a new purse.
This is my old loved, alas too heavy for me at this time after my surgeries/
 I made a new one tonight out of fabric, much lighter to carry.
This purse is from Mr. O'Quilt's beloved suede jacket.
I carry my man everywhere with me now.
Just showing now the details I am proud of:
 Inside pocket with Velcro and loops to hold the straps.
back loop
zippered pocket

Thick and soupy weather in Charlotte...
Nice to sew, to blog and to read a bit...

Sunday, May 13, 2018

How Grandma spent her Mother's Day

Some of my favorite things... 
My beautiful children
Pictures from 13 years ago..on my wall.
 Grandma's pig 100 years old, cats my sister embroidered 40 years ago
Little Red Riding Hood with wolf hidden under her skirt.
 Angel from Miami quilt show...forever ago
Cat hook from NYC antique store...50 years ago.

The cat brought me a dead bird, placed carefully by my favorite chair under the tree. My children both called me for Mother;s Day, one from Portland and one from his tent in the woods.  They said that they loved me. A great thing for a mother to hear.  I sent the grands to visit their own mother.  It was the right thing to do. 

Alone on Mothers Day, yet not alone..forging the future and how it will look for me.  The past is gone..the many family get togethers and dinners when we were younger and all alive.  They had their time.  OK...a few tears as I missed my mother and husband and grandmother too.

From the skies it seems, thick snow is falling...It is is fluff from the Carolina Cottonwood tree.  I have a vintage quilt batted with  this....I am too lazy to collect it now... My husband's death shattered everything.

Now, I am the grandmother...I am designing my future look:. I will be kind...when I am rested, that is..I will do the right thing, as I see  it...I will be eccentric...I have 4 irons and 5 sewing machines...I have two sewing rooms and have put the ironing board up in the dining room as the other two rooms are too messy.  Out on the screened in porch is a cutting station with a cutting mat.  If it were not for our nanny, Stephanie...and her OCD cleaning tendencies...I would have fabric stashes in the living room too.  She did say that if she finds fabric in the kitchen, she will quit.  She  keeps me in line.

I prepped the teacher presents for the children to make as thank you's...A bit of cutting and ironing to make it go faster.  Evan only has 4 , Dylan insists only on 2, but our dear Lynsey just loves all her teachers...She will be painting 6 potholders with fabric markers.   She stands between my legs at the sewing machine to quilt the stitches she wants on her presents...She swats back my hand so she can sew by herself...We enjoy this sewing time together.

I now have a book for longer in my I can scratch them off when done.
Further down on my list is water the plants. At 91/95 degrees for the past few days, I am too late for the seedlings.  Sad...If something has to go, I guess that is not toooo bad.

I could not wait for my grands to come home...Home they came at 6:30  No hugs, as they were fighting with each other.  A mistake in sending both boys to shower together....OMG the noise, I thought that bathroom was floating down the street..and, they had locked the door, so I could not get in.  They thought all that was great fun.. I did not...Lynsey made me brownies for Mother's Day...we played Clue Jr....where Evan and Lynsey fought over the game.  I took out my left over shrimp dinner from last night...they both wanted  it, so I split it for them...Grandma so not crying over having brownies for dinner...They have been home two hours...I am exhausted...All asleep while I have brownies and red wine.

A great week ahead.  A Sit and Sew tomorrow, Lunch out on Tuesday, Wednesday night quilting and all day Wednesday, no school with my son coming for a visit.  Great plans...a very nice thing.
School will be out in June with everyone passing to the next grade...whew...a close one...and I am going on an airplane for the first time in 25 years to Portland to visit my daughter in her new 1910 house...and visit my three dear online ALS support friends.  Life is good at 70

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Four years ago today, my mother died.

Four years ago today, four days after your 93rd birthday....
We are holding hands as you died.
I am grateful to have been part of you.
Thanks  to you, I have always felt loved.

by Michael Ham

Here, in the twilight, she stands in the shadows
and looks back upon the road just traveled.
Limbs, once young and limber, hold her frame with difficulty now-
the clarion voice of youth now mirrors the song of the butterfly.

She was the poet, and now she is the poem-
a story for the reader yet to come.
There is a clarity to her rhyme-a subtlety to her meter-
and in her verse is the story of humanity.

Here in the twilight she awaits the evening,
not in melancholy, but in anticipation.
She does not stand alone, for here-further back in the shadows-
are all the characters who shared her stage-her light.

She was the play write-and she inhabited her play-
a generous actress always ready to share the applause.
When a fellow actor stumbled, she picked him up
and infused him with a desire to be better-for her.

She was the teacher-sharing the song of poetry with the world.
She was the mentor-passing her love of words to youth.
She was the friend-she was always the friend-
showing each fearful soul what courage looks like.

Here in the twilight- as shadows deepen-
she does not hide her eyes from the coming dark-
but sees the dawn of discovery
that rises on the far horizon-and she prepares.

Here in the fading of the day-when meadowlarks serenade-
She sees the faces of all she loved-of all who loved her-
And as that last glimmer of light falls softly on her aging cheeks-
She hears the angels sing; hosanna.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Weekend sewing/ weekend pondering

Using the sparkly vinyl that Cousin Ann sent from London,
I started making bags.
I love clear bags.. as I will never find my stuff otherwise.
Queen of the mess.  Queen of confusion.!!
This bag is ready, with potholders, to bind at my next Sit and Sew.

 I have found that vinyl bags are best closed with velcro
Colored velcro in all sizes in my collection.
A little glue with some large easy.
 Seems like my widow brain is still not working like I want it to.
Now, one patch in brown..making 16 patch..
Now working on purple challenge...
Now working on making bags
 or prepping children's teacher's presents for the children to sew..
Finish nothing...nothing at all.
Starting everything....sigh...
Acceptance that I have a million unfinished quilts, because
you see...I just love the journey.

I am very frustrated with myself...I asked the two youngest grands if 
they thought I would ever be younger..NO!!
But, as Lynsey said, if I were younger, I would not have the time to raise them.
Then I asked them if they thought I would ever be thinner...
Another resounding NO!! would not be able to give good hugs if you were thinner...
Way to go kids!!

Evan has a friend spending the night..parents out of town.
Two 13 year old boys having the best time with each other.
The friend brought his personal lap top that his dad gave him.
My grand is on the computer next to him.
They are playing the same war game together.
You should hear the shouting and competing..
The new generation. having so much fun..their own way.

My grief walks with me every day.
My grief  makes others uncomfortable.
They want to fix it...
They want me to be quiet about it.
They think I should be past it.
They think that gratitude for what I do have will erase the pain of loss.
Some think they will catch it, like catching like the flu.
Some tell me what to do.
Some give me platitudes that make it worse.
Some keep showing up with love.
Some just sit beside me in acceptance.

I am working the frazzled line toward acceptance as well.
Acceptance that grief will always be with me, like
a side car on a motorcycle, or freckles on my face...
The loss of my love has shattered me...
Finding the old pieces and making new ones
in order to carry on..

Sewing and writing this blog have helped so much.
I am grateful for the friends who help carry me through the fire to find another side.

Saturday, May 5, 2018

A totally fun, awesome, very good quilting day...

Guess who came to Charlotte?
Guess who could go without a cane?
Guess who had a terrific time??
Christa Watson and me!!!!

This was a machine quilting class...Instructions were to prepare
12 sandwiches for experimentation....
Me so not a rule follower.
I prepared 12 sandwiches from my orphan block stash.
The Modern Quilt Guild of Charlotte has an outreach of 
place mats for Meals on Wheels...
Yesterday I practiced on these sandwiches...and now have 12 new place mats
to donate at Guild...soo soo tickled with myself..😇

All set to bind today when I realized that these are just perfect for sewing at a sit and sew with my little blue machine...

Happy Birthday Mom