Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Tiny Word Quilt

Father Rob presented 7 words during a bible verse in chapel at the begining of the week and challenged the students to try to do one word each day. I think they were encouragement, consolation, love, sharing, joy and ...I forget the other two. Anytime I see words now, I picture them in quilts. I'm still pondering rendering my classroom rules in wonky letters.
So I decided to make sharing as a little quilt and give it to Father Rob on Thursday. I've got all the letters done, I'll just slap on a couple of borders tomorrow and then get it quilted up. I'm thinking of putting some words in the bottom border, maybe something like "the word of God" to follow they word sharing. My machine will do a couple of different fonts at least. I brought home a huge stack of papers, and if I carry them home again I might just go a little crazy, so I'd better get some done before I'm too tired to see straight. It might be too late already, but I'll give it a try.
I just left Bonnie's Blog and am happy to know that my book is in the mail!! I was lucky order number 1355 and should have my book soon! I can't wait to see her new book, but I think one of my recent quilts was one of her patterns, I saw a quilt that I really liked on her sight with stars alternating with a simple block she called "pus in the corner" I think. I started the quilt and then went back later to try to find the same pattern again, but couldn't. When I saw the theme of her new book, I was sure she must have pulled the pattern off of her blog so that she could put it in her book. I'll be curious to see if I'm right. Either way, I'm sure there will be lots of good ideas and we all owe some serious support to Bonnie for her great patterns, mystery quilts, and organizational inspirations.

Sunday, September 28, 2008


It's 11:40 and I should have been in bed an hour ago. I have a troop meeting tomorrow night and really need to have the formal living and dining room back into some sort of shape by then. Usually I just grab everything and throw it into the guest bedroom, but I always end up forgetting what went where when I do that. So this time I decided to go ahead and get the backings for Hurricane Road and Dad's Plaids pieced so that I could make sure all the pieces were together before key parts got put away and used for something else. If it weren't already so late I'd go ahead and piece the binding strips so that I can be done done. As it is, I'm hot and sweaty from fighting with big pieces of fabric, but I've got two completed tops folded neatly together with their backs, hanging in the closet waiting for a basting party. Now I'd better go and try to get some sleep or I'll be bleary eyed for a whole new week.

Family Outing

Today was the free day at Kennedy Space Center for local residents. We usually try to go every year. Even though we normally would have skipped the bus tour, there are two space shuttles out on the launching pads now, which doesn't happen very often. I tried to get a picture of both shuttles at the same time, but the angle on my camera just wasn't quite wide enough. It usually gets pretty crowded in the afternoon and the lines get kind of long. This year was really crowded right from the start. Kurt couldn't figure it out, but to me it seemed pretty simple, the economy is bad and people are feeling poor, so anything free is appealing. The parking lot seemed pretty full as we headed out, I hope they find room to put everybody.
I put the binding and hanging sleeve on the Sirenia quilt last night, so I took that along for the car ride and got almost all of the binding sewn down. I'll take that to school tomorrow to join the others in the marine science series. I ran out when we got home and dug up an area of grass so that we can have a tree planting ceremony during Girl Scouts tomorrow night. It is the second half of our eco-action badge and we are honoring Wangari Maathai of Kenya who won a Nobel peace prize for her efforts in the Green Belt movement. We are also making recycled paper, so will be a nice messy night.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Chaotic Progess

This is the chaos that a day of quilting can cause in an otherwise wide open room. I think if I had a football stadium full of floor space, I would still find a way to use it all! I laid out my chaos blocks in one spot, and sewed them all together. I trimmed the dogears there, so I moved over to the foyer to lay out the backing. Then I basted in the middle of the room, leaving that sticky from the spray baste. I really should go outside to do that, but the weather has cooled and the house is wide open.
I decided to quilt some loop-de-loops in black thread to work off of the polka dot theme. It came together in a hurry and was fun to do.
Here's the finished quilt, I just need to sew down the binding, which is a red stripe that was leftover after the patriotic log cabin quilt. Kurt still doesn't think the elderly will "get" this quilt, but it's going to the nursing home right along with the rest. I think the variety of prints and colors will stimulate their minds. I still need to work on some sort of uniform label to go on all the lap quilts. Maybe something with a space for the girls to write in their names.
After that I grabbed the Sirenia quilt which has been basted and patiently waiting since the Olympics ended. I was puzzled over what thread color to use, and ended up using a combination of teal and lime green because I had part of a spool of each leftover from something else. I did mostly some random outlining and some little snails in the squares around the word.
Here's the finished quilt, it uses Lazy Gal Tonya's free form letters and has relevant Sirenia terms quilted into the border. If you haven't tried letters yet, they are so fun and a little bit addictive. This one will live at school with the Starfish quilt and the Shark quilt. I still need to do a hanging sleeve and a binding for this one, but that shouldn't take too long.
I've got the Hurricane Road laid out now, and am working through how to piece the backing. It will probably need to be presses again though, and I don't feel like ironing tonight. I might finish the organizing and putting away that I started last night. I've still got some scraps to sort through and that's a nice thing to do in front of the TV. I've got all the bins out with crumbs and strings and strips of various sizes and I'm tossing the scraps in as I go through them. Maybe I'll give up on all that is productive and just do some mindless crumb chaos blocks. They are also really fun and a little bit addictive.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Hurricane Road has a Home

I decided that my Hurricane Road quilt should live on the daybed in the guest bedroom. I think the colors look happy there. I have two finished flimsies now to get layered and basted and then I can switch into quilting mode for a bit. I've added lots of leftovers to the scrap bin, so I'll have to give that some attention before I decide what is next. Since this quilt was a new project, it seems fair that I should spend some time on something old next. I may give some attention to the smaller experiments that I've been playing with lately and turn one or two of those into finished projects. The best thing about finishing something is being able to look forward to what is next.

Thursday, September 25, 2008


Lookie at what I made! I finished up the last border tonight right before I had to head out to a girl scout leader thingie and did a little happy dance. I think it's only about 3 weeks since Labor day, so that's not bad for a whole quilt. Especially not considering how hectic things have been between work and kids and running and life and all that stuff. I think I need a little time for me, no matter how busy things get. I get more relaxation from my few minutes with pins and rotary cutters and little bits of fabric than I would from a yoga class or a massage. I did go out for lunch with a girl friend today and we got pedicures, so I guess I got two doses of relaxation today. I'm calling this Hurricane Road, but when you say it, you have to hum the Holiday Road song from Chevy Chases Family Vacation movie.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

700 billion

It boggles the mind. I can't even picture how big 700 billion dollars is. We're doing the mole in chemistry right now, and part of what we do is try to put really big numbers in perspective. The current population of the US is 305,247,222. If you take that 700 billion dollars and divide it by the current population you get $2293.22. Take that times my family of 5, and I would have to write a check to the federal government for $11,466.12. I honestly have no idea what the right thing to do is, it just seems really scary either way.

million = 106
billion = 109
trillion = 1012
quadrillion = 1015
quintillion = 1018
hexillion = 1021
heptillion = 1024
octillion = 1027
nonillion = 1030
decillion = 1033
unodecillion = 1036
duodecillion = 1039.

So the mole is right in there between a hexillion and a heptillion. That's a lot of atoms. Thank goodness we don't have to come up with that in dollars!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

So Close

I got the inner border measured and sewn on, and all of the flying geese put together for my Hurricane Road quilt. I just need to sew the goose border onto the quilt and then put on the outer border and I should be good.
Bonnie's design called for pinwheels and four patches in the corners of the border, but I'm out of all of those, so I think I'll use more flying geese and just have them turn the corner. I'll look at it in daylight tomorrow and see If that is still what I want to do. It's after 11 now, and probably to late to make any design decisions. I'd better go turn in or I'll be all bleary eyed in the morning. This is my week for car loop duty, so I need to get in earlier than usual to be ready before my duty starts.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Finally a Fairly Finished Top

I finally sewed the last seam on the Old Hurricane Road middle! I'm still pretty sure that the top and bottom are not quite right, but I'm declaring it good enough. Bonnie's pattern ended up at 57.5" X 78.5 while mine ended up a much smaller 55 x 75. I guess super sized seams will do that for a quilt. The geese are all done, I just need to measure the seams and see if I had already switched to the zig-zag foot when I started them. If so, then I'll just keep going with the wrong allowance for the border. Although now that I think about it, that might make the math a little rough. 19 geese at three inches each is a 57 inch border so I guess I need to cut 1.5 inches top and bottom. Of course 75 divided by 3 is 25. so the long sides don't technically need an inner border. For consistency though I should put something there, so if I increase each edge by one, then I'll need to cut 2 inch strips to make it work out. I think that makes sense. Amy would probably be able to tell me if that is right. It was an easy day at school today. We had a guest speaker in Forensic Science and started electron configuration in Chemistry. I do an analogy with and apartment building and lazy but poor college students to explain the orbitals. Either they are all really smart or I'm just a good explainer, because almost everyone seemed to get it on the first time through.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Could I Possibly be More Oblivious?

I never switch feet. I just slap the quarter inch foot on my Bernina and go in fast forward. If I do ever switch, it is to the darning foot for free motion or the walking foot. The Girl Scouts on Monday made fabric shopping bags which need a zig-zag foot. I had just sewn the last diagonal row of Old Hurricane Road together when I realized that I had been using the wrong foot all weekend! Most of the top was done, with just the last few rows left to sew on. All with a 3/8 inch seam allowance. I'll be curious to find out what the final measurements are. I thought the blocks seemed to be shrinking up an awful lot, but I just kept going, oblivious. Lesson learned, if something seems strange, it is better to check right away. I decided at that point is was best to save the rest for tomorrow when I can reassess in the light of day.
I spent most of the afternoon prepping and painting in the master bathroom. Kurt has been plugging away in there for ages and I was starting to feel guilty for not participating. Also, he is not to be trusted with a tube of caulk. There is a certain amount of finesse in the finishing work that he seems to be lacking. So I got the woodwork all sanded and caulked, taped off the edges and got most of the trim freshened up. There was a bit of repair work to be done from the baseboards that he reattached after Jeanne a few years ago. I tried to fix it at the time, but I think I handled it wrong and hurt his feelings. All of the holes in the walls have been filled and sanded and the wall paper mural has been removed. I just need to finish up the woodwork and then the walls should be ready for a fresh coat of paint. We are going with a color called Pale Sand 4. Most of the house is Pale Sand 2 or Pale Sand 1. This is just a slightly darker version of the same thing. It is sage green right now, but I think beige will go better with all the new tile. I am of course wishing now that I hadn't painted the closets green as well. One thing at a time I guess.

Running "Hills"

I read Amy's description of her half marathon yesterday and just had to wonder. I can only imagine what that type of run must be like. I had a hill workout scheduled this morning and drove to our nearest "hill' which is a causeway. For those not familiar with causeways, they are just bridges that connect the barrier island to the mainland. I don't know how to work the elevation feature on my Garmin, but it wouldn't matter, because if you want a hill workout, it's either bridges or treadmills. We started at a nearby park and then went back and forth over the causeway until we got to 11 miles. Some workouts make you feel like you could conquer the world and some you just survive. We made it painfully through but were all dripping and panting by the end. Gatoraide has never tasted so good!
I treated myself to a southern style chicken biscuit after and I could still eat another (but I won't). Bedroom cleaning was going on when I got home, and tears were flying. We've just finished off the offending room now, with only minor casualties. Now I need to decide if I'm going to be good and go prep the bathroom for painting, or really bad and go finish my quilt top. Decisions.......

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Slowly Coming Together

Weekends are a wonderful gift. Friday I spent entertaining the kids while Dad went out to play. This morning he paid me back by taking all of the kids to ice skating and letting me sleep in. I usually do a long run on Saturday, but we're doing Sunday this weekend, so I got two entire extra hours of sleep! Glorious. I puttered around while everyone was gone, alternating between cleaning up the house and putting together some quilt blocks. I am starting to figure out the whole diagonal setting thing on Old Hurricane Road. It is coming together bit by bit. The entire upper corner is together and pressed, and all of the middle rows done, but not on the quilt yet. I've just started to turn the bottom corner, but I think it will come together a lot faster than the top, now that I have an idea of how it works. I still keep looking back at the layout diagram, thanks to Bonnie for doing all that work. As I'm sewing away, I still keep pondering a smaller version in spring colors.
This afternoon we had birthday parties at 12 and 2 so we did the divide and conquer. I was drafted for the ice skating party (more skating!) and Kurt volunteered for the water slide party in the neighborhood so that he could watch the Iowa game on TV. Nobody was horribly hungry for dinner after all of that birthday cake and pizza, so we had a simple meal followed by baths and bed. Everyone is fast asleep now (including my husband) so I can finish putting my top together with no guilt. I won't stay up too late though, we're doing our long run in the morning over the causeway again so that we can do some hill work. I think 11 is the lucky number, but I'd better check the schedule so that I am sure.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Good Day at School

We were working on scale drawings for Forensic Science today. I gathered up all of the kids doll house furniture and took it to school. The girls were a little concerned about their toys, but I had them back before they were off the school bus at the end of the day. The students all put a lot of thought into setting up their little scenarios, and then spent the rest of the period carefully measuring everything and doing the calculations to make a smaller drawing. Each member of the group had to choose a different scale, so the calculators were working away. Some of the scenes were a little morbid, and I tried not to do too much editing, but I did have to ask a couple of groups if they thought their scene was classroom appropriate.
I am so glad that it is Friday, it was a short week for us, but it still seemed long. We have a couple of birthday parties this weekend and ice skating lessons. I'll do a long run on Sunday. I think that's all that is on the list, so maybe my sewing machine will get a little bit of a workout. Everything is still in the dining room from Monday's Girl Scout meeting, so I should be all ready to sew. Kurt is taking his team out after work for some beers. They've all been working hard to meet some proposal deadlines. I've promised the kids that I will take them out to Subway for dinner if they can help me get the house cleaned up first. We'll see how it goes, but right now it's almost 6 and eating at home is looking fairly likely.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Good Run

I've been dead on my feet lately. Just so tired that I've fallen asleep sitting up in chair in the afternoon. Kurt has been giving me a hard time about having too much on my plate. He really isn't allowed to pick on me because he is just as overbooked. Still, I had planned to get everyone settled in and have an early night tonight. I would have done it happily if the phone hadn't rung with one of my running partners seeing if I was up for an evening run. It is starting to cool off in the evenings now, and there was a nice breeze. The sun was just starting to settle down into the horizon as we headed home from a good steady six miles. As easy as it is to put off running, I've hardly ever gone out and not been glad to have done it. So now I'm sweaty and calm, waiting to cool down so that I can shower and settle in for a nice early night. I didn't even bring home papers to grade tonight, so there is no guilt at all. Friday is usually my day to stay late at school and catch up on paperwork. I'll remember to bring a lunch this time so that I'm not starving by the time I'm done.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Don't Use Plastic Bags Anymore

Tonight's Girl Scout meeting was working toward our eco-action badges. Our opener was making flower petal pledges with ideas about how they can make the world a better place in the next two weeks. Each time they turn an idea into an action, they get to glue one of the petals on the flower center. One of the girls went back to turn the kitchen light off as we went into the dining room for our activity and got to "earn" her first petal!

The main activity was making fabric shopping bags. I had them rotary cut already, so they just had to do the sewing. I'm always amazed at the things that are not intuitive to them. Everyone wanted to hold the fabric and pull it toward themselves as it tried to feed through the machine. I couldn't talk them out of playing "tug-of-war" with the feed dogs. We had four machines going and two chaperone's, so it was quite a busy night. All the bags got done, and I think they turned out quite nicely. The girls were all very proud of their bags, but decided they didn't want to share them with their parents for grocery shopping. We watched a youtube video during snack time about the evils of plastic bags, and then another one for fun with a dancing man made out of 500 plastic bags, which is the average number we use in a year. I found another craft idea in my research about ironing plastic bags together in thick layers and using the laminate as "fabric" for bags. It sounds like a cool idea, but I'm not sure about the toxic fumes released by the heat and how they are for the environment.
Today was an inservice day at school so it was one meeting after another. First CPR, then suicide prevention followed by sex ed and a book discussion. I scooted out just in time to meet the school bus and then started getting ready for the Girl Scout meeting. Now I need to settle down and get some tests graded before tomorrow. The kids always want them back as soon as possible. I'm supposed to be giving a lab practical as well, so I"d better to to work on that.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Slowly, Painfully

I must be missing some spatial recognition synapse in the depths of my gray matter. I had the OHR all laid out previously and ready to sew, but couldn't quite get the ends figured out and had to put it all away. So I got it out again yesterday and decided I was going to get the top put together this weekend if it killed me. Running and training meetings ate up Saturday, but I was full of hope for today. Surely I could get one simple task completed in the course of an otherwise unscheduled day. In the middle of 14 loads of laundry, regular weekend cleaning (even though the housekeeper was here just 2 days ago!), supervision of children, grocery shopping, and planning for a Girl Scout meeting, I managed to get about 5 rows put together. I just kept fussing with the different edge pieces to try to get everything to line up straight. I know it wasn't that complicated, but it just wasn't clicking for me. I think I need a book called diagonal settings for dummies. Maybe if I had been able to spend a couple of uninterrupted hours, I could have made it all happen, but that just isn't an option around here.
Tomorrow is a teacher workday for me, but a regular school day for the kids. This may be one of the ones they had to give back for Tropical Storm Fay. I'm supposed to do CPR training in the morning and then a book discussion in the afternoon. I read most of the book this summer in Jamaica, but I'd better go "refresh my recollection" as they say in court. I'm thankful that it isn't a regular school day, because my tests aren't graded yet, and I'm giving another test on Tuesday that isn't written yet. Kurt keeps rolling his eyes at me and telling me that I'm over committed. I'd have plenty of time for the drudgery if I gave up all the fun stuff. Other than that I'm not sure how I'm supposed to make everything fit.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Girl Scout Sweat Shop

One of the moms in my troop donated a HUGE roll of upholstery fabric to the troop. Her mom got it to recover a sofa. The sofa never got recovered, and she was looking for a good home for some wayward fabric. Our first badge this year is going to be the eco-action patch, which has do with trying to save the environment. One of the options was to find out about alternatives to plastic grocery bags, so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to have the girls make their own reusable fabric shopping bags. I've got the handy tutorial that I worked up this summer, and the bags come together in about 10 minutes of sewing time. There was enough fabric on the roll to cut out 16 bags! We'll practice some of our sewing machine skills at the same time, and warm up for the quilting project that we have scheduled for November. While I was at it, I dug through my box of donated fabric and pulled out the rest of the heavier weight fabric to cut out 12 more bags. Rotary cutting is so therapeutic for me, I could just slice fabric into little bits all day long. I'm not exactly sure what we will all do with 28 fabric shopping bags, but I've been mulling over trying to sell them at a Girl Scout leader meeting with a flier inserted about the evils of plastic bags. If we sell them for $5 each, we will have enough money to pay for most of the batting for the nursing home quilts.
I also found a really easy tutorial from Crazy Mom Quilts that uses a tuna can to make an adorable pin cushion. I'm going to have my girls do this as part of the sewing badge, and they can practice fancy machine stitching on the fabric that makes up the sides of the can.
I was at a school coordinator training session all day, and it was just so long. It's all good information, I just have trouble sitting still for that long when I have a never ending "to do" list running through my head. I was disciplined enough to get up early and get my long run in before the training, so at least I could feel smug about already having 10 miles in for the day.
I don't have anything officially scheduled for tomorrow. There is a free symphony concert that is going on for the kids. Every so often it is good to have them do something culturally enriching. They have a petting zoo after when the kids get to try out all sorts of different instruments. Last year we took the whole Girl Scout troop and it was a lot of fun. So I should try to talk everyone into that, but my main agenda item is getting my OHR quilt top put together. All of the blocks are done, and they spent a week laid out on the dining room floor. Then the housekeeper was coming on Thursday and I had to pick everything up and put it away so she could clean the floor. Now it's partially reassembled, but I'd better get it together before the Girl Scout meeting on Monday or I'll have to start over again.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Gaggles of Geese

I cut out the geese for the border on Bonnie's Old Tobacco Road Quilt this afternoon, but I didn't have much time to work on it. Anna had a play date this afternoon and then there was a Cub Scout Pack meeting tonight as well as a Girl Scout Team meeting. I let Kurt take the kids to his meeting, which made mine more relaxing. Then when I got home, I used my favorite double pinning technique to get the geese ready to piece. Maybe tomorrow I can sit down in the afternoon and get them chained through the machine.
I'm doing two labs tomorrow at school, so I need to go in early and get the prep work done. I ran this morning and had to rush out, still sweating, forgetting to bring the iron that I needed to heat set one of the types of fingerprints. We'll have to do that tomorrow instead.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Finally, Something Quilty!

My plans for quilting the nights away while Kurt was out of town turned out to be overly optimistic. I spent my precious few hours after the kids were in bed grading papers and folding laundry. Not fun, but necessary.
Hannah dropped a bunch of rain on us Friday morning during school bus time. It was fine for the rest of the day, but I hated sending the kids off to school looking like drowned rats. As I hopped in the car to head into work, I noticed water running down the wall of the garage through the ceiling. Apparently our roof has sprung a little leak. I climbed up after work to see what the problem was, and I think it is easily fixable. I think they should have put flashing on the edge that meets the roof and didn't. So I spent the afternoon reading up on oversized, preformed kickout flashing. I don't know if reading about it means I can install it, but even if we end up calling a roofer, at least I'll have a concept about what to ask for. There was also a popped nailhead, which could have been the culprit, so I put that on the honeydew list. When the kids got home, they had a friend over to play and I weeded and pruned around the pool enclosure while they swam. After bed time, I bagged up three huge trash bags full of toys, too small clothes, and miscellaneous rubbish from the Sydney's room and the toy room. I didn't hide the fact that I had cleaned out tons of stuff, but I didn't make a big deal out of it either. So far nobody has noticed anything missing.
By Saturday morning, Kurt was back, and I was finally able to get out and run. We went to the causeway and did almost 10 miles of hills! After that the rest of the day was consumed with more play dates and entertaining the kids. Oh, and a little nap after my hill climbing.
Sunday I went out to run again, and decided since I was already sweaty and grubby, I should do some work in the yard. I have been wanting to do some more caulking around the windows since we had the damp windowsill during Fay. The caulking led to some touch-up paint on the trim work, and getting the ladder out for all of that made me want to do some pruning and weeding in the front of the house. That took my up to lunch time with just enough time to shower and run to Target for a birthday present before an afternoon ice skating party.
Finally, after all of that, I had some time to start working on OHR again. I put the rest of the brick units together and then ironed all my new fall fabric so that I could cut the solid, fall colored bricks. I laid it all out after dinner, even though I haven't got the edges quite right yet, I'm liking the way this is turning out. I'm glad I did the color controlled scheme, with each region of the quilt makes nice little rows. I think it would look really cool with bright yellow pinwheels, green four patches, and blue bricks. A sunshine in spring version of the quilt. I am definitely going to do the geese border, but I should be good and do some school work tonight rather than cutting them right now.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Watching the Tropics

I would need three eyeballs to watch all the storms in the tropics right now. I'm exhausted just thinking about them all! Hannah has taken a turn for the better and shouldn't impact us much, a little wind and a few rain bands should just about do it. Now the weather channel is trying to talk us all into getting all worked up over Ike. I wish they didn't always try to make it sound so much more serious than it really is. It's too much of the boy who cried wolf. Not being willing to live my life in crisis mode, I'm tempted to just ignore them all, but I know I can't do that either.
I was cleaning out some old papers yesterday and found my hurricane shopping list. It was put out by the Mormons who are very good at being prepared for the worst case scenario. I remembered most of it when I did my hurricane shopping before Fay, but I forgot a couple of things that I'll add to the list the next time I'm at the store. Still, I've decided that the most important foods to have in a hurricanes are Cheeto's and Frozen Pizza. Anything to keep the kids happy is a good thing in a crisis. Maybe I'll add m&ms and activity books to the list.

Here is my hurricane kit food list compliments of the Church of Later Day Saints:
two cans of meat 12-24 oz
two cans of vegetables 14. 5 oz each
two cans of fruit 15 oz each
one can of pasta 15 oz
one box of macaroni and cheese 7.25 oz
one box of flavored rice 6 oz
two cans of pork and beans 15 oz each
one box of hot cereal 18 oz
one package of powdered milk 9.6 oz
one package of biscuit mix 8 oz
one can juice 11.5 oz
one jar peanut butter 18 oz
one jar jelly 14 oz

This is compact enough to fit in a medium rubermaid tub and is to be sealed and stored in a safe place during hurricane season. When a storm warning goes into effect, you are supposed to add a loaf of bread and put a gallon of milk in the freezer. Then turn the refrigerator all the way to cold and you are ready to go.
Other than watching hurricanes as background, things are good around here. We had our "Dad's out of town must eat McDonald's" dinner tonight and watched a movie. Very festive. Everyone got a good bath and headed to bed early. All the kids are bummed about having school tomorrow because mentally they were ready for a hurricane day. I'd rather have school than deal with Hannah right now, but maybe I'm just an odd duck.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Girl Friends and Gossip

One of the advantages of having a husband out of town is that I can galavant around town and feed the kids junk food and nobody notices. Today was full of galavanting (I'm guessing that's not really a word -- 'cause spell check is yelling at me). After work, I came home and made some Girl Scout phone calls. Then Sydney had her first Daisy meeting today after school. It wasn't a girls meeting yet, just a parent meeting to fill out paperwork and pay dues and such. Did I mention already that I was lucky enough to find a new leader for Sydney's troop? I lived in fear that there wouldn't be any volunteers, and I'd end up running two different Girl Scout troops AND being school coordinator (YIKES!). So I am thankful to have found a competent, willing and happy volunteer. So I entertained the girls while the new leader chatted with the moms. From there is was time to drop Anna off at her friends house so they could play before Wednesday night youth group. Anna is a member of her church, but we're not, I guess that's a story for another day. So, the mom of Anna's friend is a good friend of mine, and one of my running partners. We went inside for a bit and chatted while the kids played. She is recovering some chairs in her family room, and we looked at fabric swatches -- how fun! Then I rushed home to do some girl scout phone calls and another girl friend, who lives in the neighborhood, and also has a husband out of town, brought her two boys over to play. We ordered pizza for dinner and shared gossip. Her gossip is always more interesting than mine, so I just listened mostly. After they left, I shooed the kids off to bed and graded papers until my fingers were numb. Now I'm headed off to bed so I can be bright and cheery in the morning. I can usually pull off this whole superwoman single mom thing for about three days, so I'm guessing I'll be ready for a melt down by the time Kurt gets home on Friday. But for now, It seems to be working. Hanna is steering away, and I'm ignoring Ike, 'cause otherwise, I would go a little bit crazy (well maybe a little more crazy). The storms really do almost always go somewhere else -- it's simple statistics, right? Anywhere else is just a much bigger place than right here -- more area means more probability of storms being there than here. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Ying and Yang

Look what I got in the mail today! These goodies are my prize from Amy's 100th post giveaway. You may remember that I was the lucky winner. Such a cute assortment of fabrics, and this adorable little bag with the cutest, tiniest little squares. Thanks so much Amy -- I love it! So as you can see, for me, it was a good day.
I think the happiness of my day must have been counteracted by my husbands. He was due to fly to the west coast today for business. With a flight leaving at 6 something, he drove home to see the kids on this way out of town. So far so good. He was going to hang out with them for an hour or so while I went to my faculty meeting at school. Hugs and kisses and out the door to catch his flight in plenty of time.
The phone rang at about 5:30 as I was putting the finishing touches on preparations for my Girl Scout meeting tonight. He wanted the frequent flier number to use in trying to reschedule his flight which had been delayed by an hour, causing him to miss his connection. He did manage to rebook onto something later coming out of Dallas, which gave him 10 minutes to catch his connection if he could dash madly through the airport. It was supposed to leave at 8. So I was sure the phone ringing at 7:30 couldn't be good news. Sure enough, he wanted me to look up the number of his dentist so he could find out just how bad it is when the temporary crown pops off following an emergency root canal. I ran my meeting between phone calls while trying to explain that maybe I would be more helpful when my house wasn't full of 10 screaming, running girls.
I eventually told him that maybe the fates were trying to give him some subtle hints that this trip wasn't "meant to be". My Buddhist running partner would probably explain exactly how his karma was trying to warn him off. I'm still not really sure where he is, somewhere between ORL and LAX with his temporary crown in his pocket.
No OHR progress to show today, for obvious reasons, but the house is company clean, I have two new girls in my troop and the house is quiet and calm. For tonight, that is enough. Let's just hope it's not the calm before the storm.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Step Four

I got the four patch and pinwheel units for my Old Hurricane Road quilt laid out and cut out some of the bricks before realizing that I didn't have enough brown and rust to cut out 108. I probably could have forged ahead and gotten 90% of the way done with step four, but with Kurt being out of town next week I feared I would be out of fabric and stranded at home with the kids. So I left him to feed dinner to the gang and made a trip to Joann's Fabric and Jason's Deli, my favorite "just for me" getaway. I now have a lovely assortment of fall hues, and a pleasant print for the back. Now if I find some lonely evening hours to spend with my sewing machine, I'll be all set.
I'm a little anxious to have Kurt going so far away with yet another hurricane brewing out there, but if we canceled every thing we had planned every time there was a hurricane, we wouldn't get much done in the fall. He's supposed to be flying back on Friday when it is supposed to be skimming the east coast, but that is too many "supposed tos" to make any plans around.
It's already 9:25 and I need to get last weeks chemistry tests graded before the morning. I could have done them at any point this weekend, but I was having such a good time with my mystery quilt that I didn't want to switch gears. I'd better get busy or I'll be all bleary eyed in the morning.