Saturday, June 16, 2012

It Is True

I often get asked how I do all I do...and it is true.... I am always doing something.  However, between the doing... I do take time for being and that is what keeps me going.  Come travel through just a few of the activities I've  "done" in the past few days while I was away from blogging:
While driving to the Post Office to ship international packages, I stopped and took notice of what the Flamingos were doing.  They are all gathered under a tree and they are planting some very pretty flowers.

After the Post Office I went to pick up my co-workers from their Lego Camp.  I stopped to watch the pleasure and joy they had in their accomplishments at  camp.  Then, back to doing....
Make dinner, find the boys baseball uniforms and fill water bottles, run down and pack orders to be shipped out the following day....gather the troops and head to the boys baseball games....yes, both had games at the same time on two different fields.  I spent the evening walking between each boys game.  I forgot my camera when I walked down to Aaron's game so I didn't snap a pix of him playing.

After baseball, come home feed the boys their second dinner of the evening.  Yes, they eat light between 10am and 7pm and then they eat the rest of the evening...they are funny like that. 
Now it is 8:30pm...Aaron knows that is the best time for fishing...so off to the pond I go.  I was thoroughly enjoying the cool evening and watching him pull in the fish.  (we put them back...no way I'm cleaning any of those things...yucky)
Both Aaron and I were marveling at the beautiful evening sky.

9:30 -10:00 get cleaned up and ready for bed....and then I have the choice to sit down and write a blog post or just relax....that night...I chose to relax....ahhhhh.

Thursday was full of much the same except Thursday night Waldo and I headed to Bowling Green for our guild meeting.  
Denise, a guild member, had made this smock last year.  The challenge was to re-design one of those smocks worn for mammograms.  I laughed and laughed....I love her smock.  How could you not laugh if you walked in for your mammogram and that was the smock you were handed?  Thank you Denise for the laughter.  The program that evening was wonderful too....which had nothing to do with this smock by the way.

Friday Morning:
Aaron's agenda was to make his Daddy some brownies for his birthday.  Without any help ....he did everything except put the batter into a pan and turn the oven on.  I never even asked or checked if he followed the directions....I figured it was his gift to his Daddy....I'd just put it in the oven.

Then pack orders, answer e-mails and wrap orders for shipping before the mail man arrives. Then off to get Daddy some birthday gifts.  Where do the boys want to shop?  Garage sales...where else.  How could I say no that that one. 

While on our journey we walked past some beautiful flowers and some lovely homes. Aaron carried his wallet in his hand while Zachary walked around with a gallon size zip lock bag filled with his change and a few dollars.  A real site for sure! The boys were given a few free treasures from a few of the folks having garage sales yesterday.   

The next four pix were taken at the same garage sale.  I sort of took them surreptitiously....

This is an example of what I call Marketing!  This woman had washed out the containers that her coffee and butter had come in and put them nicely in a bag and was selling them....yes....selling them.  Another of my favorites was the plastic silverware from fast food joints.  They were nicely placed on a table and yes...they were also for sale.  I think the all time best was the ice cream sticks above the plastic silverware....if you look at the second photo closely...you'll see a plastic bag filled with sticks from  Dove Ice Cream treats.  Either the woman or her family had eaten all the Ice Cream and then were selling us their sticks.  She was a lovely woman too and this was all done with sincerity.....INGENIOUS....why didn't I think of that?  I'm thinking about taking all of our old underwear and putting them in plastic bags and writing "dusting cloths" on the outside and putting them in my next garage sale....ROFL.  What a fun afternoon :)


You are looking at all the treasures the boys purchased for their Daddy for his birthday.  They were so proud and gave each gift with such joy.  Rick was beaming with joy as he received each gift too....oh is was fun to see.  He did indeed need a new golf ball retriever thingie so that was a real find at $1.00.  Zach chose the wooden mask and the bobble head pen for Dad's desk at work.  Aaron found the mini Tabasco bottles and though his Dad would just love them and the skeleton too.  The real gem was the putting thing that you plug in and put your golf ball into.  If you make it in...the ball pops back out at you so you can put again.  Aaron asked the man if he would take 50cents instead of a dollar....it was hysterical watching him doing his wheeling and dealing.  Think of all the fun we would have missed had we gone to the mall and bought a shirt.

While I'm running here and there I always have my little treasure bag with me.  What's in my treasure bag you ask?

Scraps of  fabric, paper hexies and needle and thread of course.  Weather I'm watching a baseball game or sitting at a guild meeting.....doing anything where my hands are free....I stitch  hexies.  I have hundreds and hundreds of hexies. 

These are some of my favorite here....aren't they so fun?  These are all smaller than a quarter.  People ask me what are you doing and when I tell them they can't believe it.    Mary Jane taught me English Paper Piecing and this was the size I made in my first lesson.  So what do you think I've continued to do?  Yep...I make them all the same size...LOL.  It never occurred to me to make them larger.....I'm funny that way....go ahead...you can laugh too.

Do ya'all know how to do English Paper Piecing?  I always assume everyone knows how so I have never entertained the idea of a tutorial because I thought it was common knowledge until some of the gals at guild asked me to show them what I was doing.  If you want me to do a little tutorial....just let me know in the comments below.


If you are still reading...THANKS for walking along with me in the last couple of days!!!

Smiles,
Kelly

PS...the brownies were amazing....forgot to mention that earlier :)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Lego Camp & Mayhem

It is summer vacation for the co-workers and with that brings their first camp this summer: Lego Robotics Camp at their school.

Lego has some mind blowing educational programs available that I did not even know about.  The kids build from kits and the things they build can be given movement and sounds using a computer. 
You can just guess the first sound the robot made...keep in mind it was 7-10 year old boys making them...LOL


Doesn't that just look like an absolute ball?  I learned you can build a robot that can tell what color the blocks are so it can sort them back into their bins.  I'm all for that.  I just wish someone would build one that puts dishes in the dishwasher, flushes toilets and picks up clothes and toys off the floor!

Where's the Mayhem you ask?  Let me start by saying I stopped at an Estate Sale late Saturday afternoon and everything was 1/2 off.  I saw a desk and thought it might be nice to have that desk downstairs for my sewing machine than the large table I have it on now.  The 15.00 desk has cost me hundreds of dollars of labor (my own labor and I set the fee...LOL) just to re-organize the space.  These are unedited pix....I'm warning you...if you get queezy by seeing a real mess...ya better look away now.

See...I told you it was Mayhem!!!  Scary isn't it?  Well...a bit of time and a miracle it will be put back together :)

Smiles,
Kelly

Monday, June 11, 2012

I NEED A FIX

Who knew these Flamingos would be so famous?  LOL  This photo is a bit dark because it was after 8 last evening when I snapped this shot.  Do you think I should get these folks address and all of us could send letters to the Flamingos?  It might be funny.

Saturday morning was my Machine Embroidery Guild Meeting.  Show and tell is always fun.  This is Annie's Wild Flowers Quilt.  




The first time I attended a Machine Embroidery Guild Workshop several members were working their Wildflower blocks.  I remember seeing all the beautiful batik fabrics Annie had and the beautiful blocks.  I was tickled pink to see Annie's quilt almost finished on Saturday.  Isn't it just beautiful?  

I need a ME fix.  I was using a friends Babylock Embroidery Machine .....oh talk about a wonderful Embroidery Machine.  After returning it....and I only returned it because it was far more difficult to have my house moved to an undisclosed location....now I'm in the market for a used Babylock.

I am looking to purchase a used Babylock Ellismo or Ellegante Embroidery Machine with a USB.  If you have one or know someone who may be interested in selling their machine...please e-mail me at IHaveANotion@yahoo.com

I have been watching Craigs List, E-Bay and some of the Yahoo groups.  There are a few I'm checking into further....but I thought I'd let all of my friends know just in case you all know someone.  Buying from a friend, or a friend of a friend, would be my preferance.

If I don't get my fix soon....I don't know what will happen.  I've heard things could get really ugly....the first signs of Machine Embroidery withdrawal are painful blisters...don't believe me? 
See for yourself.....and those ugly things popped up after only 2 weeks without an Embroidery Machine.
Then the skin begins to dry and peel.....and that is before.....OH NO.....This is getting really bad now!!!

Can you even begin to imagine?  I'm so scared this will happen to me if I don't find a good used machine soon....please help me avoid the evil eyes.

Smiles,
Kelly

Friday, June 8, 2012

Sunny Day Here

So sunny in fact....I needed some XL-Sunglasses!!!  ROFL

I'm proud to tell you that I only paid 25 cents for these absolutely perfect sunglasses...:)

Smiles,
Kelly

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Caught up in the whirlwind

I got caught up in a whirlwind yesterday and it wasn't the whirlwind quilt block either.  But I have to say it was fun and joyful.  After assisting with the 3rd grade beach party/ breakfast yesterday, I ran home long enough to get my orders into the mail....then back to school.

Field Day is the last day of school and all the kids get to be outside playing for the afternoon at my co-workers school.  They have tons of really neat games...like:
Some of these activities and games I had not seen before....the kids were having a blast.




As you can see there was plenty of activities.....and here is where I found my youngest monkey:
This is when a Mommy's heart breaks....Zach was just too hot and he said his tummy hurt so he sought refuge in the shade.  We went indoors for a bit and that seemed to help.

Then I ran home to be there for the last photo of the school year....the boys getting off the school bus:
 I'm standing at the end of the driveway with anticipation.....
Yep....there they are....all finished with 2nd and 3rd grade....off to 3rd and 4th grade :)

As you can guess the whirlwind didn't end when they got off the bus....so now I'll tell you that indeed I did the Random Number Generator.
 Winner: Carrie P
Winner: Liz A

Winner: Josie McRazie

Congratulations ladies.  Please e-mail me your full names and addresses to IHaveANotion@yahoo.com and I'll get your prizes in the mail to you.  I don't go seeking out winners any longer.  I have found it takes too much time....so please e-mail me if you want your gift :)

Smiles,
Kelly

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

THANK YOU!

I love it when I ask for help and people take the time to stop and send me a note.  I appreciate all the feedback I got from this post yesterday.  This morning when I got up, I had a thought.  Yes...a thought if you can believe it :)  If there existed such a database then how would all the designers make the money from their patterns?  Hmmmmm....ya'all know I would not take a dime from any of them as I know just how difficult it is to write a pattern and many also write wonderful books as well.  So, I doubt anyone will be coming up with any databases anytime soon....and you can be sure it wouldn't be me to develop a database anyway!

To show my appreciation....I'm giving a few fun things away to those that left a comment yesterday.  This is what I'll be giving away:
This is my favorite fusible...Mistyfuse and I'm going to give away my sample package from Quilt Market of both Mistyfuse and Transdoodle. 

A charm pack from RJR fabrics, the fabric is Giselle by Marianne Elizabeth.  When the winner receives it it won't be all pretty in that neat pile since I made a fan out of it first.

And a beautiful pattern from Golden Thyme Designs, Sunset in the Sierras.  I adore Lacy Hill....she is a lovely woman and a great designer too.

Today is the last day of school for my co-workers so I've got to run back up to the school now.  When I get back I'll do some random number generating and give these fun things away.

I'll leave you some updated Flamingo pix.  Apparently with all the work they did yesterday....they are have a day off:



Smiles,
Kelly

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

A Better Way....

Before I share my thoughts with you....I think a Flamingo Update is in order:

When I first saw this Flamingo...I thought it was the black sheep of the family....but I was wrong.  This Flamingo can be illuminated and it glows at night :)  As you can see, Glowie Flamingo has chores to do today....

And Gimpie Flamingo also needs to finish some chores.....but.....

 their siblings got their work done early and they've gone fishing!

"A Better Way" 
I find myself saying there has got to be "A Better Way" frequently....and then the wheels start turning....

my old wheels start turning.  You know they can get rusty don't you?  LOL

How many times do you start a project with a specific pattern and know exactly what you want to make and then go buy just enough fabric for that project?   Honestly....I want to know from each of you that read this post....please leave me a comment telling me approximately how often that happens for you.

Here is my dilemma...  I have some fabrics that I bought for one project and then changed my mind so I have these fabrics....

My mother wants me to make her a full size quilt for her birthday present and she really likes these fabrics.  I'm tickled because I can use up this fabric.....until I remember that this was going to be a baby quilt so I'm going to need more fabric to make a full size bed quilt. 

My process:
1.  Need more fabric
2.  Search for more fabric and I'd like to expand into some of the other fabrics the designer has in this line
3.  How much more fabric will I need?   That will depend on what pattern I'm going to make.
5.  I need to find a pattern.....which in part will be dictated by the fabrics. While looking at the fabric I know I don't want to loose the focus fabric so I don't want to cut it smaller than 6" finished.      

Are you frustrated yet?  This is where the frustration sets in for me.  Now the task is to find a pattern that will finish into a full size quilt AND have 6" blocks AND will use the coordinating fabrics in a pleasing way.

 I think that is why people buy kits...like this one....
 Yep....this one comes with the pattern and all the fabric needed.  That is one solution....but many of us buy fabric before we know what we are going to make....am I right?

I don't know of a database that I can search where I can enter the size quilt I want to make and then up pops tons of choices in that size range.   I also don't know of a data base where I can say how much of each fabric I have and get a list of patterns that I could make using that amount of fabric (and if I wanted it to be larger...how much more fabric would I need).

Stick with me here.....

It is like being able to plug into a database that you have chicken, butter and three eggs....and then a recipe containing these ingredients would pop up (in my fantasy life...the database would scan recipes and spit out choices of different meals that could be made using those ingredients and highlighted in red would be the "other" ingredients you need to go and buy to complete the recipe).  

Sounds simple doesn't it?  My mind tells me an algorithm can be written so that the process can be reversed....starting from ingredients firs,t instead of completed project.  I approached the folks at Electric Quilt a few years ago at Market and shared my idea.  I hope and pray they add this to their software.  

OK, I know that I can make my own pattern....I can go into my Electric Quilt 7 software and design something....I can change other patterns to make them work with what I have....there are lots of options here...I get that.  

How many of you don't want to do all the calculations and gyrations and hope that it all works out?  Call me lazy....but I want a database that has this information in it that I can access.  Perhaps I've been spoiled by Google....I Google everything under the sun.  Google has become the wise elder in my village.  Honestly, I do feel a bit of guilt just writing this post because I know my brain can solve all these things...but aren't we all so happy to have a calculator even though we are completely capable of doing the math ourselves?

I want to know what you think....and what you do in these situations.  If you don't want to leave a comment for everyone else to read...you can e-mail me at IHaveANotion@yahoo.com   

I Have The Notion but lack the skills to get to the end result....LOL 

Smiles,
Kelly

PS....I reserve the right to see things differently once I've been enlightened by my friends  :)

Monday, June 4, 2012

Green Day



Feeling Yucky seems to be a theme around the IHAN clan.  Last Thursday, Aaron was sick and I kept him home from school.  Then on Friday, yep...you guessed it...Zach was home too.  He was complaining about his head and stomach hurtling.

I was fine until this morning....now I'm feeling green.  Typically I don't announce to the world that I'm taking a sick day...but I know my nearest and dearest friends will send e-mails and call all day wondering where I am.  I'm so thankful for loving friends :)

I"m going to turn off comments....no offense....I will just feel guilty if everyone says...feel better soon.  My little green day is really just a little green day....all will be back to normal soon :)

Greenish Tinted Smiles,
Kelly

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