Saturday, July 30, 2016

Saturday Morning in July

Such a beautiful day but a little too chilly to linger long.  I'll try it again in an hour or so.

I stole the peach from Mike's birthday gift from Debby.  What a treat, and our place smells like a Georgia summer.

 If we needed a taste test, this girl was willing to try it and totally approved.  I only got 2 bites from the one we shared.

Mike, Emily, and Graysen are off for a little visit to the clinic where Graysen will play, and Mike will be at Emily's mercy.  

Now!  I get a rare couple of hours alone.  I'm not sure how I will waste it.  Writing this will take most of it unless I can find a stopping place.

Cleaning up, I see sweet memories of yesterday's fun.

Graysen rediscovered this doggie doctor kit on a shelf in her closet and has thoroughly enjoyed it.  Katherine tries to get her hands on it too when she can and hangs that stethoscope around her neck like she knows what to do with it.

We had an semi-annual apartment inspection yesterday.  We had no idea what that meant - what they would inspect or where they would look - so the whole apartment got a much-needed cleaning.  That meant I had to clear up most of my quilting explosion in the dining room and sewing room, but that needed to be done anyway.  So I've decided to take on some less fun but necessary sewing projects today.  (It turns out the inspection was a brief visit by the maintenance man and the apartment manager to check the smoke detectors and windows.  Quick and pleasant, but I feel cheated.  I wanted someone to look in my closets and check the bathrooms!)

Anyway, this is my first project.

The kangaroo backpack from Australia has been much loved and used and was showing signs of wear.

I ordered this after seeing this picture of Prince William's a few years ago.  

It's pretty small but so precious, and she loves it.  I'm not sure she will ever let Katherine have it.

I knew I had some glue and remembered when we moved in I had put up this shoe bag and stashed lots of stuff in it.

Interesting.  There are things I had forgotten about.  I'll have to come back and organize it and see what's there.  I think there are a few empty pockets too.

These are the four choices I had.

I really wanted the Glue-Baste to work, but I saw the word temporary and decided to try something permanent to hopefully avoid sewing.

Spraying was sticky and messy and probably not the best choice, but right now, after having trimmed the raw edges, it looks pretty good.  If it doesn't stick, I will just sew it down.

One down.

Another annoying hanger one:  Graysen's tea party cloth, aka cross-stitch bread cloth.  

I finished it at the Cancer Center last week, but Emily accidentally took it back to her office and just now remembered to bring it back.  I lack only 20 or so stitches, so I'm going to get another cup of coffee and get that wiped out.  We're needing to have a tea party soon.

Graysen has watched me work on it and likes to do her sewing alongside me.

She loves my sewing room.  Although I promised myself I wouldn't let her in there, she is so happy just playing with buttons and scraps of cloth that I let her spend some time there.  She loves the sewing machine but seems to be content with waiting until she's 7 to use it.  If then!  I may be too nervous to do that.  She knows the things she can't touch, like scissors and machines, and is good about reminding me that she knows.

Katherine, on the other hand, is not allowed in there and stands at the door and stomps her foot and cries for the thread rack.  Looks delicious to her, I imagine, and all kinds of ways to scatter and throw the spools.

Next on the agenda:  Another old quilt, a lap quilt.

I made this many years ago in one of the most fun classes I've taken.  It was at Kudzu Quilt Shop in Montgomery - which is no longer - and taught by one of the employees, Paula.  It was called Divide and Conquer from the book of the same name.

I would never have bought this book based on the picture of it.  It looks too much like a bulls-eye and just not pretty.

But once I saw the shop display quilt and heard what fun it was, I decided to try it.

Paula's detailed instructions to go with it.

It was so easy and so much fun, I'm surprised I haven't made another one - but then I haven't set the world on fire making any quilts.

It's made from 2-1/2" strips and placed on a piece of batting and a square of backing.  One you get all the strips sewn down, your block is sewn and quilted and only needs to be trimmed to a 12-1/2" square (my favorite part).  When all the blocks are done, you attach them with bias tape.  That part is fun too.  And then your quilt is finished without any sandwiching of batting or struggling with quilting a whole quilt.

Since it was pink and pastel, I figured neither daughter would want it, but surprisingly Emily liked it enough to carry home, and she and Ryan both ended up loving it - except for complaining that it wasn't big enough to wrap up in.  

It has been used and washed and been through lots of wear with 2 babies, and some of the seams are coming loose, especially the binding.  That part is sewn on by hand, so I'm not surprised.  Some of the other spots won't be so easy to repair, so I might just do some decorative stitches on top of them and hope for the best.

I still love everything about it, the fabric, the pattern, the easiness of it, and the fact that someone else gets pleasure from it.  I'm not usually into florals, but Paula gave me a lot of guidance in picking the right combinations, and it worked great.

And there's that old green quilt with the binding and repairs to do.  Probably won't get to that today.

My machine is waiting, and the cool breeze will be welcome when I get back.

To these:

I'm taking too much time thinking about quilting instead of doing it, but here are a few pictures of our outing yesterday.  Katherine is really becoming a little park person, and Graysen is so ready for her to be a play friend instead of a baby.  I'm willing to wait and savor these baby moments.

 I identified a Southern voice at the park yesterday when I heard someone counting for their great-grandchild - wowun, two, three, fowur!  We bonded and told our stories.  She's from Knoxville and is visiting her family near us.  She plans to come back a lot, so maybe we'll meet again.  I asked the other mother if she had heard that many ya'll's being thrown back and forth lately.  She seemed to enjoy it.  People are just so friendly and nice here.  

We were walking earlier this week when I noticed someone filling up a bag with blackberries.  We stopped to discuss the taste and the availability, and she says she gets enough along the roadways and paths every summer to freeze and use for smoothies even when they aren't the sweetest.  Turns out she and her family are from New Orleans, and I think she said it was her husband who graduated from Spring Hill College in Mobile.  We agreed that some of the natives probably think they're poison, and that's why they leave them to us.  I recommended an alley I had walked down that morning where the bushes were overflowing with berries.  I've been told there are "no snakes" up here, and I kind of halfway believe it - bad snakes anyway.  But I do believe bears like berries, so my guard is always up.  

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

A Morning with Katherine

Some strange things happening on the blog.  They sometimes post twice and sometimes not at all when I edit, so I just found this one from yesterday.

It's rare that I get much time with Katherine without her big sister soaking up most of the attention, but K is gradually becoming more of a little girl than a baby.  She now elbows Graysen out of the way and grabs toys sometimes, but usually she is pretty content.  Today Graysen was sitting on the floor, and Katherine backed up to her and sat in her lap.  So sweet.  No matter if it ended up in a rolling around wrestling match, it's still nice to see them play together.

Ryan took Graysen to gymnastics and out to lunch, so it was just the 2 of us.  It seems like since she's started to walk, the whole world is just more interesting to her.  She's mimicking actions and words and has the perfect Miss America wave.  If the door even begins to open - coming or going - she's waving and blowing kisses.

As we left to go to the park this morning, we heard the children playing at the park across the street, and she immediately started waving and saying, "Hi!"

This is what happened when I didn't allow her to go play there.

I should have put her shoes on and let her play some, but the park was full, and she would just end up standing there and watching everyone.

This was my sweet view on the way over.

We took a different route today and found masses of blackberries - most of them not quite ripe enough to eat - but it's good to know where they are.  I did get a handful to bring home for lunch, and they were pretty sour.  The bushes on our usual path are pretty much stripped clean, but I don't think anyone knows about these, or they know it's too early,

Hydrangeas are pretty much gone by now except for these dark purple ones.  I'm so used to blue ones.

 We came back to the apartment where K played nicely while I sewed a little.  She found the giraffe inner tube and spent a lot of time with that.

And showing me scraps of fabric that fell off the table.

I finished these last night, 6 of them, and have a little more work on a border section to finish Lesson 3.  I'm too sleepy to do any work tonight.

I was called and invited to a picnic at the park, and how could I turn that down.  I contributed frozen grapes, and there was leftover pizza, carrot sticks, and blueberry yogurt.

It was more fun than this picture shows.

Serve-yourself blueberry yogurt.

Mama brought home a cupcake from work, and Graysen waited patiently for it.

But there was something about that Ariel cutout----

And she couldn't ever bring herself to take a  bite.  It might have had something to do with Katherine's yogurt hands landing accidentally touching it.

It was fun.  Graysen rode and rode her bike, ran on the grass, and went down all the slides several times.  Katherine finally got to go to her park, and she made the most of it.  She would shimmy all the way to the top of the small slide and was trying for the taller ones.  I dread keeping up with that climber from now on.  I think we're all ready for bed now.