Saturday, May 25, 2024

Running in Circles

Two steps forward and one step backward. (Or is that one step forward and two steps back?) Same old same old. Spinning my wheels. Pick your cliche’! Basically, those are all overused ways of saying what I’m feeling these days. Uninspired. Tired - of crappy weather, of too many errands, of a To-Do list that never seems to get shorter and never seems to produce anything when items do get checked off. I have too little time to sew and too little motivation (restlessness) when I do get time to sew. Is this old-lady-onset ADHD? I think I need a good day of sunshine, a nice stiff margarita, and a day with no obligations, LOL.

After a stormy day today, the weather is finally forecast to clear up and warm up as the long Memorial Day weekend unfolds. Our condo’s pool is opening on Monday, and I plan to take serious advantage of it this season. 

There actually has been some sewing going on here, along with all the many other things. I’m now officially on the HOA Board (as an alternate until November’s annual meeting), and Bruce and I are still waiting for the final kitchen remodel bid. But this week we did have a ceiling fan installed in the master bedroom and picked out paint colors and bedding for that room. Slow progress, but progress nonetheless. 

But let’s talk about May’s pink scraps. I managed to get 32 pink string blocks (finished size 6”) sewn over the last two weeks (I didn’t have a blog post last week), and added a couple dozen of the light neutral/white string blocks to make a scrappy string top. The light blocks were made last fall during my string frenzy. 

I think it will look better when it’s finished off with pink binding. The top measures 42x48”.

And I’ve also been working here and there on the Anne of Green Gables quilt. Here are the first two (of 5) rows up on my “design wall”. That’s just a plain wall in my sewing room and some painters tape. Sorry the lighting is so bad. It’s just been dark and gloomy weather lately…

My goal is to get the top finished this week and hopefully basted as well. I’d like to gift it to my friend Ann sometime in early June.

I have a few garden/courtyard pictures to share, even though there is no sunshine in them!

Everything in the Greenstalk planter has sprouted  - and needs to be thinned. There is alyssum in the top tier (not shown). Then there’s lettuce, carrots, basil and spinach (or is it spinach and then basil?) Whatever.

We also have a small tomato plant in the foreground pot and a rhubarb plant loving its life behind the pot. After the season, the rhubarb will be moved to another location so I can plant a rose there. It’s the sunniest spot in the courtyard. That is, when the sun deigns to make an appearance.

The rhubarb will eventually go in the area behind the serpent in the picture below. The rest of everything - a mix of annuals in the foreground and perennials along the back  - will fill in as time goes by. 

Here is the flowering almond bush that is on the outside of the gate to our courtyard. Its tiered flowers almost remind me of strings of garland on a Christmas tree. They smell heavenly. 

That’s about all I have for you this week, but at least it’s something. I’ll be sewing the rainy afternoon away today. We have no formal plans for the weekend yet, but that may change. See you next week, and thanks for dropping by!

Linking up to Scrappy Saturday at Angela’s blog

Saturday, May 11, 2024

A Quick Hello

First of all, I’d like to all you US moms out there a very Happy Mother’s Day tomorrow. Mine will be spent with family either in person or by phone calls for those out of our area. I hope you get all the flowers and chocolate and loving you want and deserve! 

Sewing remained a peripheral activity for me this week. I do have some sewing things to share, but most of my days were spent with friends, running errands, meeting with contractors and HOA “stuff”. Life seems to have sped up with the coming of Spring!

On Wednesday, four of us friends went to visit the public Open House of the new Taylorsville, Utah LDS (Mormon) Temple. Pictured below, left to right, are Ellie, me, Donna and Ruby. 

The Temple was stunningly beautiful in every respect. My favorite things were the beautiful stained glass windows that featured artistic interpretations of Utah wildflowers. But the marble inlay, paintings, African mahogany woodwork and crystal chandeliers were spectacular as well. It was sumptuous but at the same time very serene and reverent (large crowds notwithstanding). 

After our tour, we lunched at a sweet little cafe and art shop near my home. It was a bit too breezy to have our salads outside on their dining patio, so we ate indoors and then toured the boutique gift shop. It was a fun way to spend a few hours with friends!

In sewing news, I completed the two Star blocks in pink. We’re working through our pink scraps in May for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. In the week ahead I’ll be focusing on my pink strings. 

No progress was made on the Anne of Green Gables quilt this week. Instead, I focused on pressing new clothes, taking in seams in some old clothes, and shopping for new (smaller) underthings. 

We have selected a contractor to work with on our upcoming kitchen remodel. Most of the materials have been selected. They - the general contractor and the electrician - will visit on Monday to take final measurements and “fill in the blanks” in the numbers. We’re getting the financing in place and are beginning to check out potential new appliances. Hopefully we’ll sign a contract and get the ball rolling in the next 10 days. 

These are samples of most of the things we’ve selected. The top piece is the oak cabinet wood, which they still need to check availability and timing on. Below that are the tiles for the backsplash areas. They’re not white, but a creamy almond color with lots of variations, not visible in these two tiles. 

Below the tiles is a sample of the quartz countertop. We wanted minimal (not exaggerated) veining in it. And lastly, at the bottom, is the plank flooring that will extend from the kitchen to the family room and down our L-shaped hall. 

In the coming week I’ll be doing some more flower pot planting, and we have a community-wide luncheon here at the condo complex. The theme is Cinco do Mayo (belated). Hopefully some sewing and cards with friends will round out the week. Oh, and I need to get an RSV shot and my 10-year tetanus booster. We both have prescriptions to pick up at Costco today, so I guess we’ll be fighting the crowds to get that all done. 

Saturday, May 4, 2024

Some Pink Sewing

Hello friends! I was happy to finish up two of my chosen monthly blocks for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge this week. For the month of May, we are focusing on beating back our pink scraps. My pink scraps somehow manage to multiply when I’m not looking, so there’s no chance of clearing them all out this month! But I did manage to sew up:

Three Color Sticks Blocks:

and two Windmill Blocks:

This week was once again filled with errands and gatherings and contractors. I’ll spare you all the details, but the highlights included Bruce’s birthday (we had a lovely dinner at a fancy restaurant), my annual physical (all is well), a visit from family who helped us hang the last of the pictures and things (until after the remodel, anyway), more contractors - plumbers, landscapers (checking out the sprinkler system valve), and a coffee date with a new friend. And several walks around the lush, green condo grounds. 

Next week we meet to finalize plans with one of the bidding kitchen contractors and possibly sign a contract if all goes well. Fingers crossed! I have two gatherings with women friends next week, plus a couple of friends (a couple we used to pal around with) from the old neighborhood are coming over one evening to see the new place. 

Friend Ruby and I will be taking a public tour of the new Mormon Temple that’s been built here in the Salt Lake Valley. The LDS Church always lets the public tour (much of it) before a new temple is officially dedicated. Ruby has been once already and says the paintings, stained glass, woodwork and sheer artistry throughout is incredible and awe-inspiring. And this morning (Saturday) Bruce and I spent a couple hours with the young couple who bought our old home to give them a crash course on drip irrigation and help them out. They also invited us to come in and check out some of the changes they’ve made. They’re such sweethearts, and we had a good time. They don’t have any local family, so we feel good about being a safety net and source of information to them on the house and yard. 

Our grandson Easton - the one who’s a Nuclear Engineer in the Navy - got home from a duty assignment a couple weeks ago. Here’s a picture of his submarine coming in to port. 

Easton and Madalyn driving home after being apart for a few weeks. I love this picture!!

This weekend I begin sewing sashings and cornerstones to the Anne of Green Gables quilt blocks I’m making. Hopefully I can get the quilt top partly or even mostly assembled this coming week. 

Oh! Bruce and I took a couple hours to assemble a new cat condo for Darla and Alfalfa one afternoon. The cats were good inspectors, and promptly took up residence. They seem to really like it. Darla insisted that I get some pictures of it and them next week. Who am I to refuse a direct order from our feline overlords?

Linking up to Scrappy Saturday for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. Have a great week!