Thursday, September 30, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Out of chaos…..
I didn’t realize how scattered all my sewing stuff was in this two room apartment until I gathered it all up from under the bed, in the corners, and behind the recliners and dumped it all on the couch in the “big living room.” I sorted, discarded (yes I did discard some stuff I promise!), folded, and found spots for all of it. Now it waits to be packed into the car for the journey later this week.
Friday morning after breakfast we will head for home after four months here at UMCOR Sager Brown. This is obviously the longest mission trip we’ve ever done but I can honestly say it has been the best. We have fallen in love with this mission, meaning the place, and with the mission, meaning the work. We have made friends who have become our family away from home and who have worked with us, prayed with us, and laughed with us. We have done work that changes peoples lives for the better. And God smiled on us as a parting gift this weekend. How beautiful is His work!
Saturday, September 25, 2010
October is coming and the days are noticeably shorter. Back in June when we arrived at Sager Brown the sun was fully up when I went to breakfast at about 7:15. Now the morning look is entirely different. Many, many years ago when we used to go to a river in north central Arkansas to trout fish my mother-in-law used to tell me I should get up to see the sun rise over the river. I had three small children and was perpetually exhausted like most young mothers so the very thought of getting up early on a weekend on purpose was like a bad joke. Today I know why she said that. I look at this scene and it’s like God is saying “Look what I did for you today Marlene.” The peace that overcomes me when I’m standing there defies description. It’s a beautiful way to start the day.
Friday, September 24, 2010
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
While I was in Houma last weekend visiting The Quilting Niche I bought two packages of Moda 12 Days of Christmas charm squares. I loved the colors in this line, even though it’s way off what I usually buy! I also bought several yards of Moda Bliss in red – that red is just screaming Christmas, don’t you think? Then I thought…what in the world shall I do with these?
My friend Michelle over at Life on The Vine recently posted a video done by Missouri Star Quilt Company that was new to me but exciting to think about. If you click on Life on The Vine it should take you to watch the video. But if you’d rather not, here’s what I did:
First I put two charm squares, one solid and one print, right sides together and sewed a quarter inch around all four sides.
Then I cut diagonally both ways.
You end up with 4 half square triangles!
And when you’ve trimmed the dog ears (just do it even though you don’t want to because it makes a difference, trust me) you can make these:
Of course you could make lots of things with them but I made these!
Well I sewed that the 4 sides – haven’t quite finished with them all but I’m working on them. Now I have a question for you. What’s going to happen to the pinwheel pattern when I put these squares together? Will it merge into another pattern, like a square in a square? :) Should I plan to sash them if I want to keep the pinwheels? This will make a cute little Christmas quilt if anyone wants to join me!
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
401. Local quilt shops
402. Bloggers who have giveaways
403. Kisses on the cheek from fellow church members
404. People willing to drive hundreds of miles to deliver goods to this mission
406. Indoor toilets (80% of the people in the world don't have one!)
407. Waiters and waitresses
408. The Bayou Teche
409. Small towns
410. Dogs that mind
411. Men who ride horses (they remind me of how much I loved Roy Rogers when I was 10)
412. Finding out something doesn't work well before I buy it
413. Meat loaf and mashed potatoes (no green peppers in the meat loaf please)
414. Coca Cola Cake
415. Italian Cream Cake
416. Cheese Cake...oh give it up, any cake!
417. Tea cakes - that's not cake for those of you who never had them
418. Bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwiches (ok I admit it, I'm hungry!)
419. Crocheted or knitted dish cloths made out of Sugar and Cream yarn
420. My Tempur-Pedic mattress
421. Kitchen scissors
422. Really sharp knives
423. Children's choirs
424. Heating pads
425. Warm houseshoes in the winter
Monday, September 20, 2010
6. Every strip I cut would be perfectly straight and wouldn't have those little wavy w's or v's in the middle.
7. Poverty would be part of ancient history.
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Friday, September 17, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
1. If your window won't roll down, don't use the drive-thru. If you have to turn the motor off, get out of the car, and walk up to the window, why not just park, get out and go in? And if you ignore this rule, don't get back in your car after you've paid to wait for the food and then have to get out and go back to the window to get your order.
2. If you are smoking a cigarette or cigar when going through the drive-thru, put it out. Neither the clerk at the window nor the people in the car behind you want to inhale your smoke. It stinks.
3. Similarly, but not the same, if you are dipping or chewing don't spit out the window while waiting for your order. Don't spit out the window for any reason. Don't spit in public or on public property. (Didn't your mother tell you that already?)
4. If there are sixteen people in your car write all your orders down before you get to the order window. Under no circumstances should you wait until you get to the speaker to make your decision. If there are sixteen people in your car there should be no special orders. If you don't like pickles take them off when you get your burger. No, they will not make your drink half Coke and half Sprite.
5. If you have multiple children instruct them to stay quiet while you order or they may end up with liver and onions since the clerk cannot hear over their screaming.
6. Always, always, always end cell phone calls before you enter the drive-thru line. The people in the car behind you do not want to know that your sister is having an affair with her podiatrist or that your husband has "bathroom issues."
7. If you are listening to your IPod take the buds out of your ears before you place your order. Yelling "WHAT?" three times will not enable you to hear the clerk over The Jonas Brothers.
8. Assume you will have a clerk who can't make change until the cash register tells him/her how much money to give you and who will be completely thrown for a loop if you give them $10.25 for a $5.20 order. You're less likely to have a blood pressure spike if you just give them a $20 and let the machine do it's work.
9. If you are driving a diesel truck turn it off while you order. If you are driving a diesel truck turn it off while the car in front of you orders. If you are driving a diesel truck turn it off while the second car in front of you orders.
10. If you are using the drive-thru have your money close by before you get there. Do not make everyone behind you wait while you dig through the back seat, get out of the car and look under the seats, and then dump out the ashtray looking for stray coins.
I know you all can add to this - what do you think ought to be #11 on this list?
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
The LOVE U baby quilt is also a finish - yea! I did some free motion quilting on it so I got a little more practice at that. I can see some improvement so I know that eventually I'll be able to do more than just meander around trying not to cross my stitching. The whole time I'm quilting I'm muttering under my breath, "Breathe, Relax, Do small areas at a time, Breathe, Relax..." I'm sure I look like a mad woman hunched over my machine with gloves on my hands when it's 112° outside, mumbling some sort of mantra, pushing fabric around and around. :)
Observation: Have you ever noticed that when you are completely finished with a quilt, I mean done...ready to put the label on...you see something that's "not right"? I always look and look before I start quilting to be sure one block isn't turned upside down and other weird stuff like that. But as I look at this picture I'm wondering what it is that I've missed, because I always miss something. And then I see it. It's you. No, not you. U. U is crooked! Not much, not even noticeable to anyone else, but it definitely slants a little. I just love that. No, I'm not crazy. I just think every quilt needs a little character and there it is - character in the U! That's my story and I'm stickin' to it. :)
I didn't make this but I thought you'd enjoy seeing it. Some of you may have never seen anything like this before because it's a dying art. This cross was tatted by the wife of one of our volunteers. She sent about 30 of them for him to give away! Just look at the even stitches, the delicacy of the pattern. One of my grandmothers tatted and my mother knew how but didn't really do it. Isn't it beautiful?
Sunday, September 12, 2010
343. Yellow Hibiscus
345. Football games on the big screen over in the gym - I have quiet time at the apartment!
346. Every new group of volunteers who come in on Sunday
347. Card games on the computer
348. Bath and Body Works Wallflower (plug ins with wonderful scents!)
349. Days that the water here doesn't smell so bad
350. Cooler temperatures
351. Knowing I get to buy a new car when I go home
353. Finding the zebra stripe fabric that I wanted in a wider fabric than I planned on
354. Pregnant women
355. This is a second time but I have two pair :) Sketchers Shape Up Shoes!
356. Hooded sweatshirts
357. Cinnamon flavored candy
358. Skinny Cow Chocolate Truffles Ice Cream Bars (2 weight watchers points)
359. Sewing machines that will free motion quilt
360. Text messages from my son the coach saying "we beat their b_____!" when I just knew they would lose again this week
361. College freshman grandson who likes it well enough to stay there for the weekend
362. Grandson who got 1st chair in his first tryouts (drums)
363. Granddaughter who loves the clarinet and is learning her 2nd song
364. College sophomore granddaughter who has only 14 hours to finish her Associate's Degree
365. Grandson who finished his Associate's Degree and has a fabulous job he loves
366. Granddaughter who loves dancing and being on the stage and dressing up
367. Granddaughter who memorized her first Bible verse last week
368. Grandson who runs everywhere he goes and smiles all the time
369. Children who give me grandchildren
370. Allergy shots
371. The bravery of young people who give the message at our Thursday night worship service
372. The Internet
373. Super B Complex Vitamins
374. Special Olympics
375. Golf Carts
376. Days when my arthritis isn't too bad
377. A husband who understands my need for sewing time
378. Young men playing basketball on the outdoor court next door
379. Police who stand out in the traffic and sun helping the people they serve
380. Seeing a wheelchair ramp my husband has helped build on a church near here
381. Joy filled Sunday church services
382. When the lost has been found
383. Hands folded in prayer
384. Embroidery thread that is rich in color and soft to touch
385. Valet parking
386. Red, White, and Blue
387. Banking online
389. The huge live oak tree in Baldwin, LA
390. Lancaster County, PA
391. Fountains that spray water and have enough room for me to sit on the side and put my feet in
393. Pinto beans cooked with salt meat
394. Cornbread eaten with the above
395. Negative CAT Scans, MRIs and XRays
396. People who feel blessed even when life is hard for them
397. Lost children who say "there's my Mama!" when they spot her a couple of pews back
398. Lunch after church with friends I've just worshiped with
399. My very own mansion in Heaven which is, I'm sure, next door to Mama and Daddy