Monday, February 25, 2008

Signs of spring

I've completed this post card for my husband's nephew. It's early, his wedding isn't until the end of June. However, with our impending move, I knew I wouldn't be able to get something accomplished until fall. And the way my mind works, if I don't get it at least started it will just become a memory or lost idea. So, here it is all finished.

The words are written with a pigma pen. Appliques and background fabrics are all silk. The embellishments are glass beads and small metal beads. Finished is standard postcard size, 4"X6". It was great fun doing this one.

I've set the Valentine lap quilt aside for now and probably won't get back to it until later on in the year. Huh, along with about 7 other projects in different phases of progress. Usually I keep a log on each project and notes or ideas of its direction. It's somewhat an organized system. Haven't lost or forgotten about anything yet.

Speaking of organization, my sewing room used to consist of an awkward table and everything else crammed in a closet in milk crates. And I had to share the room with my husband who loves to tinker with electronic things and take them apart. About 5 years ago, I told my DH that I've had it and I need proper storage space and would like my own room. So, we were moving anyway and searched for a bigger house. Ikea is my favorite store and I have lots of their furniture throughout my house. In the sewing room, I have 2 tall Ikea cabinets with shelves and drawers and 1 Ikea bookcase to match. My sewing machine sits on a 6 foot long Ikea table with a 2 drawer unit on the far end for my thread spools. Here are some pictures.

This is the best workspace now and I have so much room to spread out. My pictures don't do the room justice, it is larger than it looks and I didn't get over half the room in the pictures as I have my Valentine project still laid out on the floor. To the left of my machine is a cutting mat, so when I need to cut something I don't have to jump up and find a space on another table. The ironing board is also in this room. Will have to consider all the spaces we need for our next move and hope we will find a house with large enough rooms for the furniture.

Took a hike yesterday and noticed my neighbors have lots of great spring flowers coming up. There were pretty purple crocus's, carpets dainty snowdrops, and loads of sprouting tulips! Even the trees look like there are tiny buds making an appearance. The weather has been ideal and I hope it lasts with the threat of frost a distant memory. My neighbors have much prettier yards than mine. I planted 100 tulip bulbs 2 autumns ago. Some will come up, but they always look sickly. Maybe my dirt isn't as healthy. The only plants that look healthy in my garden are the weeds and there are lots of them. Oh well, at least I can grow something! :o)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Painful Memories

This week I had a final dental appointment before our move. It was sad, really. After 45 years, I have finally found an excellent dentist! My childhood memories of dental visits were always traumatic. Oh how I hated climbing up into that funky chair. After the initial "And how are we today" by the children's dentist, I knew pain would inevitably follow. Now when I was growing up, sweets were a rare thing. My sis and I only got candy at Halloween and maybe a handful of taffy at Christmas. No exaggeration, it's true. Yet my teeth are appalling. Not quite as horrifying as seeing metal mouth in a James Bond flick, but I assure you, I can count on one hand the number of teeth I have that do NOT have a filling or crown. My husband is the same way, although he has fewer fillings than I. One dentist told him once that he has good spit (saliva). What does that mean? Is there such a thing as good and bad spit?

Anyway, when I was 7 years old a dentist told my Mother and I that I would need braces. And would have to wear them for at least 2 years AND that I may need them when my permanent teeth come in. Really, no joking here, he really told us this.....

UHH, NO was my response. My teeth weren't crooked, I just had bad spit that made my teeth rot. OK, maybe it was the cheap inadequate toothpaste? Or the way I brushed my teeth? Whatever was causing the cavities, I KNOW it wasn't that my teeth were crooked! Needless to say, I didn't get the braces, thankfully, and we found ourselves a new dentist.

By the way, my mother also suffers from bad spit and lots of cavities, crowns and whatnot (she once had a gold tooth). My father was no exception either, he had a full set of falsies by the time he was 23. I blamed his bad teeth on the fact that he started smoking at the ripe old age of 13 and his family was very poor and couldn't afford check-ups for 10 children.

My son, has good spit. He has the best spit on the planet! He's going to be 25 soon and has not had one bad check-up (knock on wood and whatever else is around). EVER. No, not one cavity! How did that happen? Well, I'm not going to question a good thing! I am just so happy and overjoyed for him. He's been blessed with a wonderful set of teeth. Now let me tell you his routine (secret). Since he could eat solid food, he's had an apple everyday. Yeah, maybe an apple a day does keep the doctor/dentist away? When he was a baby, we had to give him fluoride drops every day and later he drank fluoridated water. He never had soda pop, still doesn't drink them. However, he had inherited my chocoholic gene.
Now, I made a comment about cheap toothpaste. Over the years, I think they've improved the formula. Not just the hype about whitening and blah, blah, blah. It's the paste or gel itself, way better than the stuff they used to pass off. Do you remember the stuff? It was like flavored paste that turns to foam, no substance whatsoever. And what was with that red tablet stuff we had to chew up in school? OOHH, it was horrible.

What made my dentist better than the rest was that I found him to be honest, firm yet caring. After all, he pulled 2 wisdom teeth for me 2 years ago (yeah, I'm "lucky" because I didn't have them out when I was 20, go figure. This is what my sis used to say to me all the time). He didn't "put me out" for this, no, just a local and yank, cracking sounds (my skull), yeah I could hear it all. And it's a little alarming when he says "hummm, I've never seen that before". He gave them to me as a memento. I have them in a tiny jar on my desk. Weird, I know. Now, when will those other 2 come in? UUGGGHH....

It's an experience I won't forget anytime soon, but I am still going to keep the teeth. My son had all 4 of his out about 3 weeks before I did. Maybe I was just waiting to have someone to go through it with me? My great dentist said that this was nothing, he had a patient who was in her 80's finally getting her wisdoms out. I wondered if the whole experience of hearing her teeth breaking away from your jaw shocked her so much it killed her or at least gives her nightmares? He also told me they sometimes can grow back? Is this possible? One dentist told me that if I haven't had my wisdoms out by now (I was only 25) then they weren't ever going to grow in. RIGHT, good-bye! Another quack.

Soon I will be on the hunt for a good dentist, maybe even a great one. At least I've had enough to know what to look for. In the meantime, keep brushing and flossing! :o)

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

More Progress

This was taken on BEAUTIFUL Sunday morning. The village square had these wonderful scraps hanging for decoration and celebration of Fasching and Rose Monday.

I am making slow steady progress on the Valentine lap quilt. Seems like I can only sew for about 2 hours before I switch gears and move on to something cooking, cleaning, or HAVING to go grocery shopping. If it was possible for me, I would not ever go shopping....any kind of shopping. Nope, don't like it at all. Clothes shopping is always a disappointment. Absolutely everything I try on (and have actually bought) looks hideous on me from socks to sunglasses. Do you ever have those days?
Grocery shopping is another story entirely. I always feel as if I am in everyone's way and even though I shop at the same grocery store every month (yes, I only shop once a month) it seems like I have trouble finding everything I need, so I end up cruising the aisles at least twice. After 2 hours of this, I stand in line for what seems like an eternity and everything is starting to melt or defrost before it's bagged. This is why sewing/crafting/quilting is important to me. It's the ME time to create something I like. It can also be the stress outlet I need.

So without further ado, here it is so far:

I need to make more X's and O's and start on the words, "Be My Valentine". When completed, I am hoping to get it around 50"X 60". That seems to be the ideal size for a lap quilt.

My DH has already seen this in progress and I told him it was for him. His response, "Groovy, with the green and pink it looks like a 70's quilt". At least he doesn't come right out with, "I hate it". He respects me and my work, so, OK, I love HaHaHa, just kidding.