Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My evening with Gary Sinise

I finally got an opportunity to download a personal photo.  Are you shocked?  I know I am!  Someone else took the photo and e-mailed it to me, and after a few gyrations, I was able to get it inserted here.  And since none of you have ever seen a photo of me, let me introduce myself.  I'm the one with the white hair and white blouse.  See, I told you I needed to go on a diet.

Last week, I was in Augusta, GA attending a dinner for the 319th Transportation Company Vietnam Veterans dinner (my husband's unit). 

The keynote speaker that night was Gary Sinise.  And what an amazing person he is.   He posed, chatted and spent as much time with each person as possible for four hours and didn’t stop until the room of nearly 400 had emptied out.  This was all done after spending the entire day touring the Active Duty unit and visiting the wounded warriors in the military hospital at Fort Gordon.

I don’t want to make this post boring, but I’d like to share a few things with you.

1.       Gary Sinise was never in the military.
2.      His deep-rooted support for troops was born partly out of guilt.
3.      He escaped the draft because of his age and spent much of the conflict oblivious to the sacrifices men only a few years older than he were making.
4.      His brother-in-law was a Vietnam veteran and Sinise learned much about the war through him. Sinise wanted to know why men served, what combat was like and how he could help veterans.
5.      Sinise was deeply honored to play the role of Lt Dan in ‘Forrest Gump’
6.      The Steppenwolf Theatre he co-founded in Chicago continues the tradition of bringing in local veterans for a free performance of the final dress rehearsal.

In perhaps his most important role, Gary Sinise helps veterans heal.  Just as he did last week.

The men and women who protect and defend this country are pretty amazing people.  And, as it turns out, so are some of the actors who portray them in movies.  Rarely is there more heroism, more patriotism, more honor or more camaraderie squeezed into one room than there was Thursday night in Augusta at the 319th Transportation Company Vietnam Veterans dinner.  I am deeply honored I could share that night with them.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Fabric $5 per yard - what a deal!

Funny Babies - Rattled Pink Panel        Funny Babies - Blankie Blue Panel

Crafty Girls Workshop has their clearance fabric on sale for $5.00 per yard.  With the rising price of cotton fabrics, they're going fast.  Go check them out - I'm seeing some Michael Miller and Kate Spain.

Look at those adorable baby panels for $5.00 each.  Aren't they so yummy?  Check it out and let me know if you order anything and what you order.  Cuz I'm curious like that.   

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

GIVEAWAYS. And a Quilt Book Club. What????

Here's one you need to check into - read all about it here and do like I've done.  Sign up!

Here's a little background about The Quilting Book Club.  Shawna at 1 Choice 4 Quilting and Amy at Amy's Creative Side have teamed up to bring this awesome concept to us.  Go and check them out!  Go!  Go!  They've got got giveaways!  I'll wait.  When you get finished come back and read about the Quilting Book Club. 

Wouldn't you love to make one of these?  They're the featured pattern for the month of May.

Basic Ease

There's no cost to participate.  You'll just need to buy a book and pick out your fabrics.  Or they've got kits if you want to use the selections they've already made (and they are to die for!).    They'll use the book for 4-6 months with a featured pattern each month.  You just post your photos to a flickr group and they'll have giveaways!  And don't worry - if you only want to participate one month, fine.  Just do it one month.  You want to participate more than one month?  That's fine too.  Again, there's no cost to participate, so you are in control.

Don't you just love those quilts?  What a win-win situation!  SIGN UP NOW

The Power of Words

This is a truly touching video - it's only one minute and 48 seconds long.  But it touched my heart. 

Since I'm new to blogging, I have no idea how to post the video on my blog, so I'll send you to the site where I saw it.  I saw this on Quilting Ranny's blog (see - I try to be a good blogger and cite my source).

Hop on over to the video and see "The Power of Words"

Sunday, April 17, 2011

I've got a computer virus - OMG! And this time it's on my work-issued laptop

Well, if you've read much of my blog, you know I don't have the capability of posting photos because I use a work-issued laptop to do my postings, and I'm not allowed to download personal info on the laptop.  Yes, isn't it wonderful that my office allows me to use their computer for my personal use?  Yep, I asked for permission before I started using it for personal use.

Around midnight Friday night, I was out surfing the net looking for a quilt pattern I could use for the H2H Challenge.  I wanted to do something fairly simple, but yet something I've never done before.  I might as well challenge myself, huh?  After all, isn't that why it's called a challenge?

Anyway, it was around midnight, I'm as happy as can be, when all of a sudden, the work-issued laptop starts saying it was detecting a virus.  Yep, 19 of them it detected.  Four of them critical.  I clicked on the option for it to fix the viruses.  And all that did was got me caught in a loop.  It did something and then came back and said, do you want to fix the virus?  I click on "Yes", it does some gyrations and then comes back again and says do you want to fix the virus?  Oh...definitely not good.  So I get on the phone and call the IT office (thankfully they are open 24/7).  Long story short?  I've got to take the laptop to work with me tomorrow so the Security folks can look at it and see what's going on.  Hopefully they can get everything straightened out pretty soon. 

When my granddaughter was with me two weeks ago, I took my personal laptop to yet another computer shop that came highly recommended, to see if they could revive it.  The diagnosis?  My motherboard is the culprit.  It can't be fixed.  Man oh man, if I had just quit while I was ahead.  This is the third computer store I've gone to for help.  The first two computer repair shops had told me they fixed the problem, and no sooner would I get my laptop back, and start using it, when it would freeze up on me again.  I'd power the computer up, talk sweetly to it, stroke it lovingly, tell it how I missed it, and everything would be fine, when all of a sudden, it ignored my finger caresses over the touch pads.  I'd type and no letters would appear on the screen, then ZOOM all of them would display.  Naturally, I had typos considering I'm watching the screen and nothing appears, so I try to backspace or arrow back to make corrections.  Nope, the laptop ignores me.  THAT is what this nasty virus did to me. 

So...if the Security folks get my laptop fixed, I'll be back in business and will be posting updates.  There's a big possibility they'll issue me a loaner laptop, in which case, that gives me even more reason to love the place where I work.  And here I was thinking I was finally going to take the plunge and try to buy myself a new laptop.  This scares me.  I love surfing the internet, and I'm on here for hours at a time, flitting from one place to another just like a butterfly from one flower to another (oh what a nice visual), and I'd hate to know I can't fly around Internet Land playing.  I guess I don't understand the type of places I can't "play" on the internet.  I would never have dreamed I would get a virus from going to a site to look at quilt patterns.  Where is it safe to play?  What type of sites should I avoid?  Have you got some advice you can give me to help me avoid this in the future?  (My personal laptop had two antivirus protections on it, and it still got the "kiss of death" and died on me).

Friday, April 15, 2011

Calendar Quilt - the quilting is done!!!

I wish you could see how excited I am.  Why you ask?  Why am I so excited?  Well.....holy cow!!!!

I just got an e-mail telling me my calendar quilt top has been quilted and is on it's way to the post office.  My insides are jumping all around.  I did a high-pitched squeal (which is NOT becoming from a soon-to-be 58-year old fat woman).  I did a little dance around the room, a hop and a skip, and a couple of twirls.  After all that, I'll probably be laid up for the weekend because I've thrown out my back.

Debra at Debra's Design Studio quilted it based on what my daughter wanted (something very simple).  I had asked Debra if she would send  me a couple of photos since all of you know I can't post pictures to my blog (I'm hanging my head in shame).  Debra posted photos of my quilt on her blog that you can see here.  Please go look at them.

Go on.......  I'll wait..........  See -  I'm patiently waiting for you to read it.

Are you back?  Surprise - I got photos!!!!  I'm so excited!!!  I e-mailed Debra and asked for permission to copy her photos to my blog, and haven't heard back from her yet.  But I wanted to post something so bad, I figured what the heck.  Later on, I can post the photos here after I've received permission.  After all, I need to follow all the rules and be a nice blogger.

Hurry, Mr. Postman.  Please hurry.  Jumping up and down in anticipation isn't helping me lose weight.  It's just making my back hurt.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Lump-less binding tutorial

This is an awesome tutorial.  Especially for someone like me.  Since I'm a visual learner, I have difficulties with a lot of new techniques. 

I get intimidated easily when attempting new things.  I get caught up in trying to understand the steps.  In fact, earlier today I e-mailed Wendy at Why Knot? about a comment she made on another blog because I didn't understand the concept she was describing (not this one but something else).  And Wendy was so gracious, she promptly e-mailed me back with an answer.  And duh!  I still didn't understand.  So she then drew me a diagram and sent it to me.  And I got it.  Told you - I'm a visual learner

So....when I saw the Lump-less binding tutorial at Karen's Quilting I saw a tutorial that is going to make binding quilts a true joy.  I've always had so many problems getting those dangly end pieces of the binding matched together.  It is always so dang evident where I do the matchy-matchy to finish off the binding.

So....whatcha' waiting for???  Check out this fantastic easy, easy, easy lump-less binding tutorial

Let me know what you think.  Cuz I'm nosey like that!  Yep, that's me.   Nosey, nosey, nosey.  Tell me whatcha think.  Is it awesome or what??  I'm almost tingling with excitement to try this technique on my calendar quilt.  As soon as I get it back from the quilter, I'm going to rip open that box and RUN to the sewing machine to sew the binding on!  What a change from the usual "Oh God, how am I going to screw this up?"  Like the song goes, "I'm so excited, I just can't hide it!"  And I am!!!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge - last day for sign-up

First up, my apologies for posting this the very last day of the challenge, but I just found it a couple of hours ago and it took me this long to find out how to post the button on my blog.

Look over to the right of my blog - do you see the Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge button?

The rules are simple - you'll be paired up with another participant, and the two of you will swap two yards of fabric.  You will each then make a 60" x 60" quilt with the fabrics you received, and send the finished quilt to Judi at Green Fairy Quilts.  There will be a giveaway at the beginning of the challenge, among those who sign up, and one at the end, among those that send finished quilts to Judi!
Naturally there are deadlines to meet, but they all see do-able (jeez, is that a word?), so guess what??  Squeal!!  I've signed up to participate.  This is my first time to do something like this.  The only other thing I've ever participated in is an International Christmas Quilt Swap, and honestly, my outcome on that wasn't very good.
But I'm excited about this, and I hope that at least one of my nine followers will sign up for this (even though time is running out on this challenge).
Hop on over to Sarah's blog Confessions of a Fabric Addict and leave her a comment letting her know you'll participate.  Heck, if I can do it you can do it!  Let me know if you sign up - that would be so cool!  I'd love to know I influenced at least one person to do this.

Make sure you watch the video posted here and see the quilts that were donated last year as well as what was purchased with money that was donated.  If you don't think you can make a quilt, or don't want to take on a commitment like that, you can donate money that will be used to purchase food and/or school supplies.  Watch the video and you'll be reminded once again how fortunate you are.  Please help.

Monday, April 11, 2011

In search of fabric (Roman Holiday) HELP!


HELP!!!!  I'm so new to all of this quilting stuff, and I'm learning things the hard way.  While in Germany, I started a quilt, and only bought enough fabric to make the quilt center.  Thank goodness I at least know the name of the fabric line I used. is my SOS...I need some Moda Three Sisters "Roman Holiday" fabric.  With a dark background.  Does anybody know where I can find some? 

I'm generally really pretty cool when it comes to searching on the internet for stuff, but I'm not having much luck with this search.

The pattern I used is the one above (Homeward Bound by Bloom Creek).  I've got the quilt center completed, but need to add the borders.  I have the light background for the outer border, but not the dark fabric for the inner border.  And I guess if I can find the fabric, I'll use the same fabric for the backing.  A FQ, jelly roll or charm pack won't help - I need yardage.  I've found some yardage here, but I'm not willing to pay $22/yd.  I'm not one to buy things from eBay, so that isn't an option.  And would also prefer a location in the US instead of international.  I'm thinking 4-1/2 yards will work.

I probably don't have everything I need listed in this posting, but we've got severe thunderstorm warnings and an awful storm has already caused damage in Georgia already, so I'm going to sign off and cut this laptop off.  Any help you can provide is greatly appreciated.  Thanks!

Am I lucky, or what??

I seldom win contests.  My luck just doesn't swing that way.  Not that I have bad luck.  Generally, I don't.  But I've really been lucky the last few weeks.  Here is what I've won recently:

First:  I won a Rose Parade charm pack from Corrie at Quilt TaffyThis is my first charm pack, and I’ve been sitting here looking through all the colors for the last five or ten minutes.  I’m so excited and can’t wait to get started on a new quilt top.  I’m just loving the colors – they are so ME!!!

Rose Parade 10 inch squares Layer Cake Moda Fabric

Second:  Leslie at Cote de Texas had a giveaway on her blog for this beautiful Victorian Eiffel Tower bracelet.  The designer, Leslie Andrews of Tarnished Lace, uses vintage pieces to make her  unique, one of a kind pieces.  


This bracelet was special and touched my heart because I lived in Germany seven years and almost every time I had visitors, they wanted to go to Paris.  I had a love affair with the Eiffel Tower, and seeing it illuminated at night reminded me of a piece of Swarovski crystal. 

Third:  I won an apron.  This will be my one and only apron.  Emily at Phone Home Designs by ET was giving away your choice of an apron – and I got to choose from eight aprons.  How cool was that???  I was so excited to win this, and hope it will make cooking exciting.  What???  You don’t think that will happen?  Oh please, please tell me that isn’t so.   Oh well, in any case, I’ll look pretty cute as I’m in there slinging things around trying to cook.  Well, as cute as a fat old lady can look in a cutie-pie apron.  And just in case you’re interested, I chose the last one in the photo below.  I figured that one would hide the fat from my body, and maybe disguise the food stains I’m sure I’ll get on it.

Fourth - yep there is a fourth win!:  I haven't received this win yet, but I know it's on the way.  Jean at Quilting Ranny had a giveaway of this Moda pack and an awesome Sandy Gervais 'Oopsie Daisy,' charm pack pattern.  Everything was donated by Linda, the owner of Abbi May's fabric and quilting shop. Isn't she just wonderful? Linda didn't just donate this awesome charm pack, she also donated the pattern and buttons to go with it and is sending it all wrapped up in an adorable Moda bag. 


Thursday, April 7, 2011

I'll be away a few more days

Since my 5-year old granddaughter is here with me, blogging is non-existent.

I'm also going to be checking into purchasing a laptop soon, so hopefully I'll have some photos to post in the near future.

I've missed blogging.  Even if I didn't do it often, it had started to become a part of "me", and I really miss it.  And I miss those of you that would leave me comments.  They are very much appreciated.  And I read them often.  It just makes my heart go pitter-patter thinking you took those precious moments to leave me a comment.  My purpose in starting this blog wasn't about readers, or commenters, or followers, it was about wanting to put my thoughts down so I could come back later and revisit memories.  Readers, commenters and followers are just super, duper icing on the cake!

I've enjoyed this time with my granddaughter.  I can't believe a 5-year old doesn't like to go places.  She wants to stay in the house all the time.  I know that's what she does when she's back home.  She goes to school, and after school, her mom (my daughter) picks her up and takes her to her grandmother’s house (my mother) and she stays there until my daughter gets off work around 10:00 that evening.  My mother is partially bedridden, so my granddaughter doesn't get to go outside much, and pretty much watches TV, plays her Nintendo or colors and puts together puzzles.  I was so excited to have her here with me.  I had sent out SOS notes to co-workers and friends trying to find out what kind of things were available in Atlanta for a 5-year old to do for fun (that were free or relatively inexpensive).  My granddaughter had asked about going swimming, and I found an indoor swimming pool for us to visit.  We went Tuesday and haven't been back yet.  She HATES to have her hair combed (it's down to her shoulders), and we argue about the fact that she needs to have it combed.  So can you see a reason there as to why we aren't going swimming?  Yep, gotta have it combed before we leave so we can put it in a pony tail or braided, and then gotta wash it, then gotta comb it again.  Wow!  No siree, evidently she doesn't like swimming THAT much! 

So, do you want to know what she has done every single day since she has been with me?  She has played games on this darn computer – she knows all those websites – PBSKids, Barbie, Sesame Street, Disney, NickJr.  Hours and hours and hours of doing nothing but sitting here in front of this computer.  Hmmm…that sounds kinda like what I do every day.  But I’m not 5 years old.  I’ve tried to put my foot down and stand firm about us going outside, playing with bubbles, flying the kite, anything.  But nope, she wants to play games on the computer.  So you know what?  I’ve only got her one week.  And I am NOT going to have her think I’m a wicked witch because I’m not letting her do what she wants to do.  I’m a grandmother for goodness sake – I’m supposed to spoil her.  And again…it’s just one week.  So I’ve let her do what she wants to do.  No hair brushing (I’m finger-combing it and putting it in a pony tail).  No swimming.  No restriction from the computer/internet.  I’m hugging her and kissing her and spoiling her.  It’s my one week with her, and I’m going to let her do what she wants.  And I’m going to love and kiss her while I’ve got her.

So I've had her since Friday evening, and I'll be taking her home (to Augusta) tomorrow.  I'll stay in Augusta and leave early Sunday morning for my drive back here to Atlanta.  The Masters Golf Tournament is going on in Augusta, so it's going to be a madhouse trying to get around town while I'm there.  Our house is less than 2 miles from one of the entrances to the tournament, so it's not as if we can just ignore the traffic.  But if I can get out early enough Sunday morning, I can avoid a lot of the traffic.  Hopefully! 

I've missed you, and probably won't be able to come out here and blog until I return on Sunday.

I've got a few things I'd like to post.  I've won a few giveaways this past week, and that in itself is awesome.  I usually don't have good luck with giveaways, and to win several in a week or so - unbelievable!

Hope this wasn’t too disjointed.  I’ve got a 5-year old tugging on my arm wanting “her” computer back so she can play games.  And I’m not one to deny this little angel.

Have a great weekend y’all.  I’ll hopefully talk here again on Sunday.