Friday, January 8, 2010

Fleecy Skid Stuff

"The moon on the crest of the new-fallen snow
Gave the luster of midday to objects below"

Boy, it was light last night. After a dusting of snow on the ground, the clouds moved away and the moon came out. You could (and I did) walk around the house without any lights on. The weathermen were predicting a little snow for us and so that was the "buzz" all day yesterday. Folks around here get all excited at the mere mention of snow flurries. "Do we need milk? Do we need bread? Will school be closed?"

I have a picture that I hang up in my kitchen when I decorate for Christmas, but it gets to stay up a little later than the rest because it's a winter picture. It shows two snowmen. Beautiful, white, plump snowmen and it reminds me of winter the way I remember it as a child. We have lived in Georgia over 19 years now and in that time we have seen a few really pretty snow falls. Five or six inches of soft white covering the pine trees. Gone in two days. Perfect snows. But that's been several years ago. Now if we get enough to even attempt to go out and play in, what you see the next day are these scrawny, anorexic "snowmen" that are made up of as many dead leaves and sticks as they are snow.

The coolest (pun left intentionally) snowman I ever built was when I was a sophomore in high school. One of those old metal outdoor chairs was still in the yard from summer time and so I made one sitting in the chair. It was easy, really. Just fill the chair with snow. Then I built legs coming up to it and added some shoulders and a head and arms. He was awesome.

So last night after our little dusting of snow, Jodi and Jeremy went outside and built a "snowman". I just think that is so sad.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Looking Back

I spend a lot of time beating myself up for not getting enough done. I'm always focused on new projects I want to do...or "works in progress" that I feel I should be working on. And it's true that I waste an awful (and I do mean "awful") lot of time on Facebook these days (yeah...thanks, Jess!). But once a year I allow myself an opportunity to go back and look at what I have actually done in the past year in the way of my projects.

I spent the first several months of 2009 going through my mom's photos...and then my own photo albums. I made great progress, but I can't actually say that task is "finished" because it's an on-going struggle to keep up with pictures, etc. Especially now that we take so many great digital pics and then have to save them somewhere or print them or whatever. I did manage to make two pretty neat scrapbooks this year. One was for Jerry. It was some of my favorite pictures of his mother. He was very touched by it. Another was a Christmas present for my brother. It was all of my dad's pictures from WWII and it was fun to make and I love the way it turned out. Through an odd set of circumstances, I got to give it to him in person for Christmas -- even though we haven't had Christmas together for many years. And while I was in scrapbooking mode, I also made a scrapbook calendar for a friend for Christmas.

But most of my focus in looking back is to see what's been produced in the sewing room. Particularly in the quilting department. Since I hand quilt, it takes a long time to actually piece and quilt a final product. The only ones I can count that way are a wall hanging that I made for this year's quilt guild challenge and the annual family Christmas quilt. Jessica won the drawing for the Christmas quilt this year. But I also completed a casserole caddy, a tote bag, a wool table topper, 5 crosstitch projects and a dress for Savannah. I was able to complete two old quilt restorations for customers, too.

Each of the included...made 20 pillow cases for children with cancer. Ours were combined with ones made at Sweet Home Quilt Co. over Thanksgiving and Melisa was able to deliver 334 pillow cases to the ConKer Cancer organization. Here we are at our Christmas party, showing off our bagged-up and ready-to-go pillow cases.

By far, most of my sewing room time this past year was spent piecing quilt tops (unquilted). As I've documented, I made 7 for the Babes for their birthdays as well as one for Elaine for Christmas. I didn't quilt these because they would never get finished -- and they can quilt them however they like. I also pieced two quilt tops for charity that were quilted by my friend, Ardis. My goal was to make lots of scrappy quilts and really use up some of my fabric stash. Right. Using your stash is like eating a do it and do it and do it and nothing seams to disappear! But it was a lot of fun and since I still have lots of stash left, I guess I can do a couple (hundred) more!

So, as I look back, I guess it doesn't sound too bad. 10 tops need quilting, 9 other projects, (I can't finish the song because I don't have 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, etc.) 20 pillow cases, 2 restorations, 2 quilts completed -- and a partridge in a pear tree. I already have big plans for this year. Some of those plans even include getting back to started projects. So I guess I need to get off the computer now and get busy!