Monday, January 31, 2005

Christmas Tulips

This weekend we visited Ama and Poppa G. They live in Miniscule Town USA. Mr. Moo took a nap under this Christmas Tulip Quilt, it is actually a patterned piece of fabric that Ama liked a lot so she sandwiched it and quilted the thing. It is very snuggly.

Christmas Tulips Posted by Hello

Visiting gave me plenty of time to work on my current UFO, which I call Celtic Tulips. Celtic Tulips should be available for picture taking soon. I think I may combine it with my Spring Thing tulips, possibly for a baby quilt or just a wall hanging. I’m not really a wall hanging type girl but I’ll try it.

Well, it’s Monday Morning and I was hoping to hit the ground running on this newly titled and combined blog but I feel instead like I'm swimming in concrete. Having class Monday night seems to really cut down on my productivity. Plus this month is pretty much non-stop for me. This weekend I have my annual Winter Blues Quilting bee, and I haven’t finished my block for my own party yet!

The next weekend my sister is visiting from Philadelphia, and one of The Man’s cousins is having a baby shower, so Mr. Moo and I will be in Seattle all weekend, then next weekend, Mr. Moo turns ONE! HOW DID THAT HAPPEN? And Relatives from near and far will be converging here for festivities.

And the final weekend of this month is the Heart and Sole run. Sheesh. Well I should get cracking, because on top of all that, I have school and an exam tonight.

To round off this Tulip entry, I noticed this morning that either Crocuses or Tulips are popping their heads through the wet dirt in my garden!

Friday, January 28, 2005

When Good Toys, Go Bad

choo choo debacle Posted by Hello

One thing about having a Goal list is that you really start to feel like you are achieving things. Because you can mark them off. I love lists, for just this reason.

I have noticed though that the things I want to do on the goal list are getting crossed off quicker.

For instance: Update Blog, make cookies for neighbor who just had baby, cut out giraffe for Cookie monster, instituting after dinner walks.

Are crossed off.

While finish study questions, clean bathroom, do laundry, are not.

But why focus on the negative? After dinner walks are quickly becoming a favorite with me, and especially with Jonah. After all Jonah needs fourteen walks a day so that he can pee on every blade of grass that may have grown while he was inside, or on the porch.

It is a nice time to spend with the Man, and Mr. Moo as well, winding down after eating. It is especially nice on the nights we drive Pixie home, we can just stop off at the Lake and walk. It really helps me to focus on The Man, and his day and our plans for the week, weekend, life.

I got the idea for after dinner walks from Susan at Finally Running one of the many running blogs I enjoy. Which brings me to another topic. My running blog. I have been feeling schizophrenic lately what with my running blog, home improvement blog and terrapin textiles, and after talking with some blogger buddies I'm going to combine my two main blogs.

So starting next week this blog will be Running Stitch, and you may see some running type stuff! Don't worry, running and quilting are what keep me sane and there will still be plenty of both....until I go crazy.

Later guys!

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Pixie Update

Important SIMS update:
Pixie Potter informed me that if you don’t like one of your SIMS characters you can invite them over to swim in your pool and then take the ladder out so that they drown.

Note to self:
Don’t piss off Pixie.

Celtic Blues

I’ve been knocking around the house wishing I had a project ready to quilt, the problem with having your sewing machine in your baby’s room is that when he is sleeping you can’t work on it. And hen he is awake, YOU CAN'T WORK ON IT. So quilts in need of piecing go unpieced.

Especially if he has become enamored with drawers, opening and shutting them, and taking things out of them, then inevitably putting those things in his mouth. Not so good with pins and needles.

Celtic Blues Posted by Hello

I found this picture today of my Celtic Blue quilt. T (Mad Quilter) and I took a Celtic quilting class sometime while I was pregnant ( ever notice how things suddenly become before, during and after pregnancy?)

It reminded me of another Celtic project I started, so I went digging in the basement where my sewing room currently lives in boxes and found the traced but un-started project. (Not picture worthy yet.)

Yay! Now I have something to work on (besides my homework) while Mr. Moo is napping.

That’s right UFO list here I come!

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Fire Risk Level- HIGH

Note to self:
Maybe you shouldn’t sit down at the computer, just for a minute, if you are in the middle of making bean soup, and ironing. Potential for setting the house on fire, is high.

Blogger Mystery

Below are the two pictures that gave me so much stress yesterday, they are trying to do the same today but I have out smarted them HA HA! For some reason if I just post the pictures they turn out fine, but if I post text with the picture they are just a little box. What a pain!

With my sewing room in shambles, my blogs in limbo, and my readings for class undone, I’ve been in serious need of inspiration. Why does posting my own quilts inspire me? I think it is reassurance that I can complete projects!

I love making quilts out of old clothes, it is so comfy feeling somehow. I think I mentioned it before, but making quilts for guys often presents a challenge and I’ve found that most of them respond well to denim quilts.

I made this quilt for my husband before we were married, when we were just living together, in sin. And it has been our bed every since. Frankly I like the denim look too.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Lookin Good

Okay, so I had a little blogging melt down this morning when it took five minutes to download a picture and then every time I added text the picture disappeared. I couldn't figure it out and Mr. Moo wasn't interested in letting me, so frustration got the better of me and I signed off and turned off the computer.

Pixie Potter showed up as usual at three and it allowed me time to sit down, and concentrate on my blog, and once I determined that the slow factor was over I went into the template and changed things around.

Still have a few kinks to mess around with, but I feel better. And I look better, to me anyway.

Also while I was on my afternoon computer hiatus, I cut out a giraffe to sew together. I decided that cutting out softies is one thing I can do while the Buddy is napping and then I can sew in spurts.

Funny how after a day of writing down your goals, you can feel overwhelmed! Back to the business of making quilts!


When your blog doesn’t cooperate with your wants, and you are already feeling disillusioned with it because it is not what you want, you take the hint and walk away from it for the day. OFFICIAL TERRAPINTEXTILES BLOG VACATION DAY.

Monday, January 24, 2005

It's what's for dinner

My class this weekend was INCREDIBLE, which I think is saying something since it took up my whole weekend, the only time all week when I see The Man! It was an organizational management class and not only was the professor engaging, and get nuts he is a manager! There was no silly gimmicky crap, like if you just motivate your people you'll have a well run agency.

He said basically sometimes you have crappy employees and you have to work hard to hire the people you want and keep the people that do a great job! That was super simplified because I know you don't want the full 24 hours of lecture, but it was good! Realism in action. I love it.

So I came home totally re-energized (weird, huh?) and ready for the week. And ready to organize my life, thinking about my goals, what I want, what I don't want and how to get there.

I have been struggling lately with my two blogs Run Turtle Run and this one because running and quilting are both passions of mine, but they don't seem to merge well. I've come up with some ideas how to merge them but I think it will involve me moving to a different blog host or *egads* setting up my own server to get the look and organization that would be easy to negotiate for the Internet.

There is nothing I hate more than going to a blog which I can't figure out because 1) they've got dark purple writing on a black background and I can't see a think or 2) it is so disorganized that I get lost and can't follow the layout.

So thoughts on that welcome. But the best thing about my weekend was the dinner The Man made last night.

Pot of Moo Posted by Hello

Friday, January 21, 2005

Quilting in Baby Kingdom

I decided it was time to shake off the non-quilting blues, due to lack of sewing machine accessibility. One, who wants to be depressed? Two, I have a paper to write and I AM A PROCRASTINATOR PEOPLE! So, I broke out the sewing machine.

Since my sewing machine is in Mr. Moo’s room currently, while construction goes on (or sits at a standstill because have you tried ripping down sheetrock with an eleven months old around? Uh, Yeah.) in the other room, I am sitting on a plastic tub of material sewing borders on Pixie Potter’s quilt.

Baby Kingdom Posted by Hello

I’m currently working on one of three borders, a dark purple, which will be followed by a random nine patch pattern of all the material I used in the quilt, and then another solid border before binding.

Quilting around Mr. Moo is a challenge for sure, I learn new tricks and techniques everyday. Obvious tips include, don’t leave your pins laying out, don’t leave fabric laying out (this is very tasty when you are a baby, I don’t know why) don’t leave rotary cutters out, scissors, you get the idea. But, having speed crawlers also mean you can’t leave quilts laying on the floor, while pinning or cutting unless rug rats are contained (unhappily, most often) in playpen or crib.*

I use to carefully pin all my bindings before I whip stitched them, now I use a total of ten straight pins, because I can remember that number and look for the pin if it falls out (nightmares of firstborn choking on pin, stepping on pin, poking out eye with pin: check, check, check). Then I whipstitch pinned area before moving on to next section. Flexible. That’s me.

On a random note (is there another kind?) I realized while writing out my quilting needs list that it could be somewhat incriminating if found by the Drug Task Force.

Razor Blades.

Quilter or Meth head? You decide.

I’m not looking forward do this weekend at all. Three days of school Friday night 6-10 , Saturday and Sunday 8-5. Yuck, Yuck, Yuck! And have I mentioned school is 45 minutes away so really it is 5-11, and 7-6. Yuck to infinity squared.

Three days of not working on the ex-sewing room/now sewing room again, project. Three days of not quilting and three days (most likely) of not running.

On the upside it will probably be the first three days in eleven months of not changing any diapers, or doing housework, oh whoops I forgot I don’t do that anyway.

*Mr. Moo only contained in crib for photoshoot, I do not jail my kid in his crib all day while I merrily sew, you'll notice the toys strewn about beneath crib where he had been happily playing only moments before. And the walnut clutched in his fist....why? because Daddy gave him one, one time, and walnuts are THE BOMB PEOPLE!

Thursday, January 20, 2005

What Paper?

sewing room Posted by Hello

So this is what my Sewing room looks like to date. The Man talked me into keeping my room instead of switching with Mr. Moo. His theory being that the Rug Rat doesn’t need a bigger room because, he will play all over the house.

For example, the stairs are AWESOME! Let’s go up and down, and up and down and up and down them! Have you seen these furry black kitties? Let lick them all over and hold on to their tails and giggle at the noise they make. LOOK! A toilet, it’s like the bath tub only Mama makes loud noise and picks me up whenever I play in it. It’s great. HAVE YOU SEEN THESE FISH TANKS? It’s better than eating the dirt off the floor! Did you know that if you put your face up to the window and smear it around you can then LICK YOUR OWN SNOT OFF?!!! HAPPY ! HAPPY! JOY! JOY!

So I can kinda see the man’s point, and after all I like my sewing room. So now to continue on with the reconstruction and building of bookshelves and so forth. In the meantime, it stinks to not be able to run up stairs and make a giraffe or what not.

Although I’ve been thinking about bringing my machine downstairs, because really the only time I have to sew is when Mr. Moo is sleeping, and he is sleeping on the same floor as the machine.

I actually was hand sewing a border on to one of my quilts last night (usually I machine piece, and hand quilt) just because I wanted to do something that wasn’t homework. Speaking of which, enough procrastination. Back to paper writing.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005


The weather is balmy 57 today and so we enjoyed the don’t-have-to-bundled-up-our-noses warmness and went for a two mile walk. I need to be running five miles on Saturday, now that I’m officially in the training for my half in April mode.

I’m not feeling the pressure at all because I’m easily running 3.5 now. Finding the time is a little bit more of an issue. I have a weekend class this weekend (fun! Fun! Fun!) and school is 45 minutes away so that may be tricky. But its important to have goals.

Sadly, Jonah lost a badly mutilated ball on our walk, but made up for it by peeing 37 times! Then he found a pumpkin to play with and that cheered him up a lot.

pumpkin Posted by Hello

Jonah the Dog’s Log:
Balls started with:1
Balls lost on run:1
Balls found on run:0
Pumpkins found: 1


My baby is eleven months old today. I didn't even realize it, of coures I bonked the back of my head while I was closing the closet door, (yeah, I don't know how I did it either) that may explain some of it.

You know what this means? I better get cracking on invitations, and ballons, and turtle paraphanelia for a first birthday party!

Ramblings of a Redhead

Gratuitous picture of my kid.

Sooo cute. Posted by Hello

Isn't it amazing how fast you connect with people on the internet? As you know I struggle with how open to be on my posts, but as I blog longer and become more comfortable I open up more and more.

However I'm constantly amazed at other's openness, and willingness to let the internet into their lives. We can shift through our daily blogs reading about other people's lives, taking on their burdens, feeling their grief, talking about them with our friends, only to get to that awkward part of the conversation when your running partners says "now, how do you know heather?"

It sort of like renting. You can take some new friends home, add them to your blog favorites, check them out for a couple of weeks, see if you like them or not, comment once in a while, and either add them to your list of daily reads or move on to someone whose interests are more like yours, or whom you have a lot in common with.

Which I grant you is a lot like daily life, but the internet is like diet friendships. No guilt. If you don't like someone's website, you don't comment, you move on, and unless you are of the breed that must CRASH AND BASH because you are a bitter poo, no one ever knows you are there, you hurt no ones feelings you just don't visit anymore.

Okay, I've got quilting block, because my room is TRASHED and writers block, because, you guessed it (you guys are good) I should be writing a paper for school. Back to the grind. *sigh*

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

A Spring Thing

Since I finished a project Sunday, I thought I'd dig out something else to add to my UFO list.

Here is a picture of the Tulips that came of my fourth Annual Quilting Bee, last April.

Tulips Posted by Hello

For the last four years (five this February) I have a Winter Blues Quilting Bee. The deal is, you have to bring a potluck dish, but other than that there are no requirements. If you are at all interested in quilting or are a master quilter you are invited.

I have quilts set up, ranging from the Ugly Animal Quilt (for everyone, beginner or not to quilt on, because YOU CAN'T MESS IT UP!) to Mad Quilter projects. Because, in case you haven't guessed I am a quilt a holic and I also have an organizing-people-into-doing-things problem. Like the Yearly Cancer walk team I organize or this year project, a Fun Run fundraiser for the new teen center opening in town. But I digress, as I so often do.

For the first three years, if you were an accomplished quilter you brought a block, a star block, any kind of star. If you were unsure, you came with fabric or stole some from my stash and someone helped you make a block. It had to have blue in it somewhere (for the Winter Blue theme) and it had to be a Multiple of three (3.5, 6.5. 24.5 unfinished). Around three in the afternoon all the finished blocks were put together and we drew the name of one of the participants who then received all the blocks.

I started this the second year, My mother in law won first, then one of the Mad Quilter's sisters. Last year I had a baby in February (Winter Blues was annually held the first weekend in February) so the Winter Blues was postponed.

I moved it to April and changed the theme to A Spring Thing (just for that year). I sent out Tulip Patterns, above are pictures of the ones that were done. My mother-in-law won again, but since she hasn't finished her first top, the quilt she is making for Mr. Moo, or her Christmas wreath quilt (basically she is ) 0 for 0 in quilting) she gave them to me.

I planned to make a tablerunner for this year, which obviously isn't happening, especially now that my Sewing Machine is packed up. *sigh*

This year's invitations to the Winter Blues went out last week. This years theme, hearts, because I love everybody, and I can applique it! *grin*

Monday, January 17, 2005


Well it's done. Pink Elephants officially moving from UFO list to Quilt Gallery (see sidebar). I'm just happy that my Quilt Gallery list is currently bigger than my UFO list. Success!

I am loving the tag I made for this Quilt, I usually just do boring old squares, but I have already cut out a polar bear tag for the Polar Bear Quilt, cuz I thought this was so cute.

tag Posted by Hello

The hardest thing about finishing a quilt is figuring out what to do next, The Man just rolls his eyes because their are several things, including Denim Fish that he would like me to finish!

But after this weekend my sewing room, is empty and their is a hole in the wall. My sewing machine is packed up and crammed into the Baby's room with other random furniture.

Which means the quilt square for the Tsunami Quilt is on hold but I have a month, and the BOM for February is going to be applique. In the meantime I was able to figure it out, I'm appliquing the red tree on to Pixie Potter's Quilt.

And there you have it I mentioned every UFO on my list. Don't worry, I have two more to add soon!

Happy Martin Luther King's Day.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Turtle Pie Nap

The problem with today's project is that it is on the same floor at the baby's room. So currently Mr. Moo is napping and therefore all construction type things have come to a stand still.

The Man is shopping firewood to heat our chilly home, and I'm helping by blogging and playin Sims. You know how it is. A mother's work is never done. *sigh*

turtle pie nap Posted by Hello

Seriously though, I'm bummed because it is not snowing, it is rainy and miserable and cold, but no snow. Of course the rain probably means it is snowing on the pass. I'm sad to miss another Mad Quilter's meeting. I missed December's as well.

We mad quilters are sadly lacking in numbers these days. We can't find Cool Kelly anywhere, she moved to Texas and was never heard from again. Li'l Muscle lives in Chicago, and so that only leaves three in driving distance.

Above is the picture of the Turtle Pie Quilt that never shows up in its picture for some reason. I'll have to fix that link.

Friday, January 14, 2005

Snow Shmow

The weather report is predicting snow and icy rain for tonight and tomorrow and the Man has opted out of our pilgrimage across the mountains. Being a responsible parent Stinks! No Mad Quilters this weekend. *sniff*

Scott has promised to make it up to me though. I'm excited!!

January Block of the Month

In the spirit of International Desk Day I decided to get organized, and have for my own good deemed the fifteenth of each month Mad Quilter's BOM day, mostly so that I'll get my rear in gear and get the BOM out before the next month.

I realize it is the fourteenth, it is the fourteenth right? But tomorrow is a Mad Quilter Convening so I must have the the post and the block done today, and look it is! Go me!

This month's block is called card trick and I have again used Judy Martin's book Around the Block pg 43.

card trick Posted by Hello

Each BOM takes me approximately an hour to do and they are nice easy ways to learn different patterns, and challenge yourself. Plus one a month and you have twelve blocks in a year or a week or a day, depending on how you want to work it.

Happy Quilting!

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Saturday Morning Crew

Originally the Mad Quilters were called the Saturday Morning Crew, and this was because it was made up of three ex-rowers. As in

Row Row Row your Boat,
gently down the River,
If you don't pull on your oar
The coach will just jump and scream more.

That kind of crew. And we decided we wanted to quilt, we were soon joined by my sister and her roommate, and thought about changing our name, after several years we became the Mad Quilters.

Here is a quilt a made from the Challenge Fabric (my local guild puts out a challenge each January, sorta like the Hoffman Challenge) a few years ago, when it was still the three original members.

the original Posted by Hello

Now I have to go call the roofer, because yes we get a lot of rain in the Northwest, but from what I hear, it's not supposed to be in your house, on your couch.

Which brings me to my final point. Tsunami's. Marta is putting together a Tsunami Quilt. I'm excited, especially since I just can't figure out what to do for the January Month of Softies.

Okay, roofer. Right.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Take a picture of your Desk Day

Yeah! It’s desk picture day! Here is my desk;

desktop Posted by Hello

I’m all ready to start my BOM for January, since the Mad Quilters are meeting this Saturday, I have to get going.

I also decided that the twelfth would be back up your files day, since I’m already remembering to take a picture of my desk, I figure I can save myself the headache of scrambling to find my Mad Quilter’s Monthly template on some back up disc somewhere because our hard drive is on the fritz again...

Quilting Thingee

thingee Posted by Hello

I just finished up making this cute little case for my quilting stuff. I got the idea from this post Hillary put up. It so flexible and goes right in my quilt bag. I needed some immediate gratification even though I can see the end of the Pink Elephant Quilting, in fact I’m reasonable sure it will happen this week.

Well I have to meet my school advisor today about my practicum, which means I have to drag poor Mr. Moo 45 minutes to campus so I can meet with my advisor for 3 minutes and then drive is sad face home. He usually does great, but it’s along time in the car, and I know I feel like it is useless! I am really hoping to get an internship writing grants, but my advisor wants me to work in mental health.

Been there, Done That, Got depressed, didn’t like myself, want a new job.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Zombie Baby

Baby Zombie Posted by Hello

Sarah asked how I get quilting done. I think this picture says it all. My kid is a baby Einstein junkie. He can’t even eat while baby Einstein is on.

Forgotten Toys

terrapin Posted by Hello

I feel like I lost yesterday somewhere. Between the phonecalls to my family back east updating me on grandpa's funeral, how well everything went, what everyone said and school last night, I feel like I haven't spent time with my little Buddy for awhile.

He'll be 11months old next week! I feel the pressure mounting to plan his first birthday party, which I want to do but find myself digging my heels in and holding desperately onto a rugrat who is speed crawling away from me and towards his future sooner than I am ready.

He is already crawling up down stairs by himself, getting down from chairs and couches by himself, and opening and shutting doors. Today he escaped while I was getting firewood, I was piling our front porch stash into a bucked to carrying side when suddenly a plastic ball rolled past me and off the deck, next a small noggin stuck out the door to assess where I was and then thinking I couldn't see him a small body sprinting on hands and knees across the porch towards the railing.

I grabbed him up squealing and took him back inside and deposited him in the playpen. He looked stunned for a minute and then recovered as if to say, oh yea I've been looking for this toy, this is where I want to be.

I'm excited to watch this little guy grow, but at the same time find myself trying to capture every minute of every day on film, in words, in memory. What a cutie.

Back to the Quilting business. I have goals!

Monday, January 10, 2005

Back to our regular Scheduled Program

House Quilt Posted by Hello

This a picture of one of my Aunt's Quilts. The benefits to living on the outskirts of Lancaster County are obvious throughout my Aunt's beautifully decorated house. This pattern just reminds me of snuggly warmness.

My sister called this weekend and told me that they were thinking about reading from my blog at Grandpa's funeral. After several minutes of conversation it was decided that I would just write the eulogy. So that is what I spend this weekend doing. A hard task. I interspersed it with reading for school (bleck) quilting more on the pink elephants (they're almost done!) chasing the Buddy around, and playing the SIMS.

I very seriously thought about starting a stuffed giraffe for my neighbor who delivered her baby Friday night. But didn't.

Last night, I tried organizing my sewing room for construction (minor) and painting. But mostly I followed Mr. Moo around putting back on the shelves what he was taking off. Thanks kid!

Thursday, January 06, 2005

No Words Left

The original and the copy Posted by Hello

Tonight at 11:30 pm EST, I lost my grandfather....

My heart is broken.

Bad Mom Award II

Here's a picture someone sent me, taken back in October. The Buddy was helping me check in quilts at our local quilt show, his pumpkin hat and laid back demeanor was a big hit with the local quilters, plus have you ever met a quilter who didn't like babies? Uh, yeah.

Quilt Show Posted by Hello

Hard to believe that this was two months ago when my eight month old could be left unattended for minutes in one place and still be there when I came back.

I am blessed with a happy baby who plays by himself or with his toys but he sure is busy! Today as I was, starting dinner, making bread, checking my blogs, and emails. I lost him. Yeah, I know bad mom award. But I have things to do...and people to keep up with.

His new favorite things are, pull all the CD's off daddies shelves, empty the laundry basket (of dirty clothes) play in the toilet, empty the sock bowl of socks, climb the stairs, play in the toilet, crawl around on the dog, lick the cats (all over) and did I mention play in the toilets?

Now I know he likes to play chase; chase the cats, chase the turtle on a rope, be chased by mommy, daddy, grandpa, and he likes to play peekaboo. Today we discovered Hide and Go Seek. Only he isn't a very good hider.

As I was running panicked from room to room, checking the stairs, the cat food, the toilets....I said out loud "Where is my baby" and I heard a giggle. I stopped and found him sitting in the dark in the bathroom, with his hands clasped. He squealed and lifted his arms to me when I found obviously pleased with himself.

He's funny, but I think I'm in real trouble!

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

The Snot Quilt

Here is a picture of the Snot Quilt. As in "it is so cold there that the snot actually freezes in your nose". As I was commenting to a fellow blogger today, we Pacific Northwesterners are really spoiled. It's pretty much fifty to sixty degrees here, all the time. And while that stinks in the summer it is not so bad in the winter.

So as I prepared for my freshman year at college on the East side of the state where apparently it snows. Regularly. I feared for my precious tootsies. Having been a member of 4-H for many years I decided to make a heavy duty quilt.

And while is wasn't my first quilt (that 's a whole other story, and sadly it includes Michael, yeah) and it's sure not pretty, it was the first quilt I used on a bed, and it was darn toasty.

Snot Quilt Posted by Hello

Now as you can see, it is relegated to the floor, to pad the tumbles of the Buddy. One thing I have learned from having the snot Quilt on the floor, is that babies LOVE tied quilts. All those years of hand quilting baby quilts, only to find out now that they love the ties!!

He spends hours babbling and stroking the multi colored ties. Who knew?

Monday, January 03, 2005

No! Pops! No!

hat Posted by Hello

The news from Philly is not good. My youngest sister and brother are flying East thursday after hearing that next weekend may be too late to see grandpa.

I have no desire to go. I have guilt about that on some levels but I also feel at peace with my visit back East in December. By the time I left my grandfather was no longer opening his eyes or even feeding himself.

To quote my cousin it is hard “to watch some you respect so much lose so much self respect.” It is hard to watch such a strong man reduced to the shell my grandfather is now, unable to walk, eat, relieve himself unassisted. Unable to communicate verbally. It is hard to watch him struggle with words and final utter impotent noises, indistinquishable as a word/sentence/thought. Harder still to see the tears of frustration.

When I say my grandfather was strong, I know it to be true, though he wasn't tall, burly, educated and never made much money.

But he has five grown grandchildren in their twenties, who love him. Who have backlogs of fond memories of lottery tickets and slurpies; milktrucks and WWF; Coin collecting and bowls of chocolate ice cream.

We each have our individual memories of a man who shaped our childhoods with worn and caring hands. Whose own childhood is haphazardly pieced together from fragments of memories, a mother who died at two, a father who turned him over to foster care.

Some of my memories are previously posted, some, like my potty training days, like a naked bath picture shown to your boyfriend in the seventh grade will follow me forever.

Gramps was in control. My mother was well in to her fourtieth week of pregnancy with her second child. Gramps/Grandpa/Pops/Dutch (we all had our names for him) flew West to look after me, and toilet train me before the arrival of my sister.

Every half hour he carried me to the bathroom, till I took to screaming when I saw him coming. "NO! POPS! NO!"

I've seen footage of the same behaviour as he pushed me around the driveway on my trike. Swatting at his hand in the old film I'm clearly mouthing "NO! POPs! NO!"

My cousin who spent the better part of his childhood at my grandparent's house, was quoting as a youngster as saying to his parents while they tried to convince him to leave grandma and grandpa's "but I stayed at your house last night."

Back East I heard my cousin pay Gramps the ultimate compliment. He could, with his journalism degree, write a better tribute than I ever could. But I think he summed it up best with, "I am who I am today because of him, I have what I have because of what he did not have and wanted for us"

I can only imagine what this time is like for my mother and aunt, because it is unbearable for me.

And if I had one last thing to say to my grandfather it would be,

No. Pops. No.

Frosty Lane

I had to post this picture because it reminded me so much of Hillary’s post. Mr. Moo got the Polite Elephant in his stocking for Christmas along with a few other books (his paternal grandma is a children’s librarian).

The Polite Elephant Posted by Hello

blah blah blah

And here he is reading to Fric and Frac, who are very captive audience, although I think they may have been sleeping.

Reading Posted by Hello

Continued quilting on the Pink Elephant quilt, interspersed with chasing Mr. Moo around. In just a few weeks he has gone from “Hurray! He can crawl” to “Where is the baby?” to “He’s on the stairs!!”

The Man was working one of his web design jobs yesterday when I frantically called him to tell him he needed to buy yet another child gate to keep are ever active son from toppling down the stairs.

I’m excited to work on my polar bear quilt but have set the goal of finishing the Pink Elephants first. That hasn’t kept me from cutting 2” white squares for the Courthouse Square pattern that I’m using to offset the Polar Bears.

Once I’m done the Pink Elephant quilt I will allow myself to piece the 12 Courthouse Square blocks I need, then I will move on to finishing my Loobylu’s Months of Softies to keep me busy. What the heck am I going to do for this?

In the mean time, its darn chilly in the Pacific Northwest, I'm gonna put more wood in the woodstove.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

2004 BOM December

By request of a Mad Quilter, December's BOM is a Snail's Trail, also called Monkey Wrench I found out. I had trouble finding this pattern but finally uncovered it in Judy Martin's Around the Block. I love Judy's website, I especially covet her sewing room and one day when the money starts flowing in instead of flowing out, maybe we'll remodel our house in a way that makes sense!

By sense I mean has some freaking storage! Because we live in a house built in the 1920's and they didn't need no stinking storage. But we do.

December Posted by Hello

I had a great New Year's other then getting more sick, I definately have a cold, my ears and throat hurt!! But I cleaned my sewing room I can't wait for Tania's desk picture day, this is the first I've seen my desk since Thanksgiving!

I'm in the midst of cleaning out the sewing room, so that it can be repainted ( my sister is a darn good artist, and paints murals, free of charge on our walls) and turned into a big boy room for Mr. Moo. Ten months this month! Where does the time go?