Sunday, March 30, 2014

This and That

How cool is it when a reader writes to me and tells me that she thought she recognized one of my ladies from the information on my blog?  I was blown away!  Caroll, from the West Michigan Quilter blog did just that!!  And then, she was kind enough to take a picture of her friend, Beverly, (Lady #70 from last weeks blog post) and send it to me.  How fun was that?  I LOVE pictures of my ladies with themselves!!!  Thank you so much, Caroll!!!  (Now I'll have you all watching for the next Lady, huh?)

I'm still buying books!  (Much to my hubby's dismay, I might add!)  I did sign up for our library's "hold" program, but although I have "holds" on 5 different books from 5 weeks ago, I have yet to hear a word.  Good thing I have Amazon to help me fill in!!  lol  You will note in the stack below that one is labeled "Not for Sale".  Believe it or not, I won that in First Reads program.  You sign up for a free book and if you win, you are expected to write a review.  Not a bad deal!  I have another one coming from them.  So far I won two!

These are the ones I read this week:

"Fallen Beauty"         by        Erika Robuck
"The Fault in Our Stars"        by         John Green
"Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet"      by    Jamie Ford
"The Warrior"            by        Joyce Swann

They all were pretty good!  I bought "The Fault in Our Stars" because of the amazingly high rating on, but while I was reading it, it felt familiar, like I had read it before, so who knows, it might have been a book that I read here and there last year and never wrote down.  I hate when that happens!  I'll pass it on though.  I don't think my niece has read it yet.

Then………naturally………I sent out envelopes last week.  Thankfully, I have many made up ahead of time, so I can just pull one out when I need it for birthdays.  For the kids though, they like it when I coordinate the envelopes with the book titles (if you can believe?)  Sometimes, it's a real challenge!

So, that's the news, my friends!  Today I have to deliver Lady #71 to my quilt shop.  They commissioned me to do their long armer so I'm hoping she will be pleased.  Then tomorrow, I decided to have my twice a year cleaning ladies come to clean my house…just to treat myself…..and to pray for spring.  (It's 23 degrees here right now.)  I think I'll read a book while they work……ho hum!!  Maybe eat a bon bon or two too….he he!  I hope your week will be good too!  Until next time………...

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sewin', envelopes & books (again)

First off I MUST show you the awesome mini quilt I received from Ruthie who was my QT partner.  She is the best paper piecer I know and created this 9 inch square beauty especially for me:

Ruthie likes pink and green, so this is what I made for her.  The theme was quilted houses:

Mine ended up at 9" x 7 1/2".  The rules state that they must stay under 12 inches square.

Then… usual….I sent out a bunch of envelopes this week.  We did have some birthdays in the family, so there were more envelopes than usual.  (Yes, my relatives ALL expect a special envelope for their birthday now no matter how old they are.)  lol

On top of that, Lady #70, Beverly from the US got her portrait in the mail so I can now introduce her to you.  I also will show you the one photo she sent, but I used a different one to make her quilt, so it might not exactly look like her:

I chopped her out of a bigger photo.  Can you tell?

On top of all that, I finished 3 books this week…….all which had over 400 pages…..ugh!  No fast reading this week!!

"The Storyteller"             by       Jodi Picoult
"Missing You"                by       Harlan Coben
"The Pieces We Keep"    by       Kristina McMorris

By far, the last one was the best one.  I could hardly put it down!  So, that's the news here.  Today I am going to start the book, "Fallen Beauty" by Erika Robuck.  I won a free copy through Goodreads so I figure I should read it and give a review.  It's a historical fiction novel about the poet, Edna St. Vincent Millay with only 354 pages so it should go fast.

So, my friends, happy reading or happy sewing….whatever your pleasure!  Until next time…...

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Lady #67, fun mail and books (as usual)

Whew, finally Olga aka Lady #67 made it to her destination.  We were worried!  Olga lives in Brazil and to be honest, Brazil doesn't have the best postal system.  I've had issues with Brazil before so Olga decided to pay extra for priority shipping (to the tune of $41) which made the trip from the US to her home only 3 1/2 weeks rather than 3-6 months as I have seen in the past.  During that time though, she and I have become very good friends, so that was a plus for both of us!  Enjoy yourself, Olga!  It was a ball working with you!   I also posted the original photo of the "real" Olga for you to see.

Some of you might be astute enough to note that I have not yet posted Lady #66.  She, my friends, is a gift and will be revealed the end of April.

Naturally, I sent out fun envelopes to my little ones this week:

Did you recognize that last one?  I copied one of my mug rugs from years ago.  Audrey went to a real live "tea" with her parents this past week during her spring break, so I HAD to celebrate the occasion!

Then, I spent my marvelous birthday Amazon gift cards on books.  Can you believe?  (You should see my unread stack now……I need to stop buying and take a good speed reading course, I think.)  Sad that I can shop faster than I can read!

This week I finished:

"Paris Letters"                      by      Janice MacLeod
"The Husband's Secret"       by      Liane Moriarty
"The Life List"                     by      Lori Nelson Spielman

And started "The Storyteller" by Jodi Picoult this morning.  Out of the 3 from last week, "Paris Letters" was, by far, the best.  It was light and fun and made me smile!  Besides, that, no book has ever made me want to learn french before.  lol

So, my friends, that's another week down the tubes.  I hear that spring is right around the corner, but you couldn't tell that by our weather this morning.  It's snowing outside right now (again…ugh!)  So, take care….until next week (when I will have some sewing to show you…..if you can believe?)

Sunday, March 9, 2014

I think spring is coming…..

The temps are supposed to reach 47 degrees tomorrow.  Can you believe it?  I'll believe it when I see it!  So far we still have a foot of snow on the ground and I will be so happy to see it gone, although I don't think one day of 47 degrees will "do" it.  Now maybe if it stays above freezing, we might see spring yet!

It occurred to me within the past few days that I really needed to get going on making envelopes for my little granddaughter since she is learning to read (age 4) and Audrey's mom returned the real easy readers to me that I sent to Audrey last year so that Arwen might read them now.  I thought as long as I was at it, I might as well make duplicates for my favorite lady at the post office who also has a 4 year old granddaughter.  I forgot how long this process takes.  E-gads!  Took me one whole day just drawing and coloring 20 envelopes and I didn't even have them addressed yet.

Here are the ones I send out this past week:

And then………..drum roll please………..I sewed!  I know, don't faint!  I think I told you that I joined a pincushion swap?  Well, here is the one I sent my partner with funky pins to match:

And here is the package I received from my partner, Cinda (sewbusy64).  Nice paper piecing, don't you think???

Then, naturally, I read some books this week.  Actually, hardly any were worth reading, in my opinion, except "The Art Forger".  I started one book twice and got to page 90 both times and was so totally confused, I set it aside.  I think I'll just give it to my niece and see if she can make heads or tails out of it.

Mr. Penumbra's 24 hour bookstore           by      Robin Sloan
The Art Forger                                          by      B. A. Shapiro   (The best of the bunch, by far!!)
Golden State (the 90 pager)                      by      Michelle Richmond
Lies you wanted to Hear   (a debut)         by       James Whitfield Thomson

So, that's it……my week in a nutshell…..except it was my birthday week, so lots of happy wishes, lunches, etc.  One day I had so many phone calls, I didn't do anything but talk on the phone it seemed.  I don't think I talked so much in a month!!  Needless to say, I didn't get much else done that day.  lol

I hope you all have a wonderful week with super nice weather too!  I have to make a mini quilt sometime this week for another swap I joined.  I've only had 2 months and I'm up to the wire…..wish me luck! Until next week………..

Sunday, March 2, 2014

"Ditto" week!

It's still colder than normal (5 degrees this morning), I'm still crabby because of it and it's getting to where I don't even want to hear any weather reports!  To be honest, I sometimes wish I could keep my blinds closed until I could see something other than snow outside.  Ugh!  Drowning my sorrows in food is not a good thing and it's basically come down to that!  NOT GOOD!  Thankfully, I still have my Copics and books and every now and then a marvelous order for "ladies".  Besides, finishing ladies #68 and #69 this week and sending them on their way home, I also mailed the following envelopes:

And then……Amazon sent me this lovely order of more books:

I'm telling you, retirement is wonderful!  Although I'm not getting much sleep, watching no TV and I'm thinking that a cleaning service might be in order unless I get myself in gear…..this house is looking kinda messy after marathon reading these past two months!  Yesterday, all I did was read…….all day!  Doesn't take long to finish a book that way, believe me!  This week, I finished:

"What She Left Behind" by Ellen Marie Wiseman - My favorite of the week!!
"Tell the Wolves I'm Home" by Carol Rifka Brunt - A fiction debut book with HIV inflection.
"Still Alice" by Lisa Genova  - About a 50 year old PHD woman getting Alzheimers
"The Butterfly Sister" by Amy Gail Hansen - A great debut mystery!

I'm reading the skinny ones first, can you tell?  Next is "Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore".  So, that's it.  Another winter week!  Yeah!  Hope yours was as exciting!  LOL  Until next time………….