Monday, October 29, 2007

Another FWYH On Its Way!

This year I have been concentrating on Finishing What I Have--projects that have been "waiting" for...ahem....years.

My two-year, five-quilt project (with fabrics being gathered for the last five years or so) has been a stunning success, ten months into the project. Two of the five finished, and the other three "sandwiched," basted and ready for the quilting. Fourteen pieces of flannel made into baby receiving blankets. A carrying case for my autoharp. Et cetera, et cetera.

Here is the latest--"being" finished. I wanted a wool throw for the back of the couch. I saved fabrics for, well, a long time. I think I started gathering them about fifteen years ago:
Notice the two red plaids below. The red/gray is from a jumper I made and wore when I was dating Charming, 1974. The red/green is even older--from a skirt-suit (Pendleton) I got from my cousin c. 1967. It was a size five, and I wore it in eighth grade. Violet and Forget-me-not got to wear it, as well. Blackeyed Susan missed the opportunity --she was too thick through the middle, and when she thinned out (read: shot up six inches in one year), it was too short. Now it lives on:

The tan/grey plaid was from a garage-sale poncho, 25 cents. My friend gave me the rust solid in 1982, the hunter green I bought about 1990. The lighter gray is another garage-sale find; I actually bought, outright, bright red solid wool, because I needed more RED (never too much red, people!) Two pairs of charcoal grey pants contributed the remainder of the fabric:
The letters are from middle schools for Johnny Tremain and Forget-me-not. The SS letter, tho' from their high school, I found in a thrift store--they wouldn't give theirs to me! Joining them later will be my mother's Girls' Athletic Association (G.A.A.) letter from 1939, and maybe my Troop Numbers from my Girl Scout troop (go 295!!)
I don't know if you can see the border. I got a yummy grey/black checked flannel. I thought it would be softer against chins snuggled up watching It's A Wonderful Life:
For the backing, I got the cutest-EVER flannel from Jo-Ann's--squirrels and acorns, with a few leaves for good measure:
I'm going to tie it with the same red wool I made this shawl out of. I hope to finish it this week, and check another thing off my list of Things To Actually Do Instead Of Just Storing The Ingredients....

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Presents for Laura Carrot

Laura Carrot's third birthday was last Sunday! Lily planned her birthday party for today. Her big present is an 18-inch doll, resembling the American Girl dolls. I have gotten a doll for each of my three daughters, my daughter-in-law Lily, and one for myself. When I give them, they always come with a quilt. Here is Laura's:
It was fun, using a drinking glass for the quilting pattern. I also make a vintage-patterned dress, and a simple sweater. The dress has Laura's name on it:
For Christmas, I will make her dolly a Christmas dress, and pajamas to match the ones I'm making for Laura.
Here's a close-up of the quilt's corner square, using Valentine's Day fabric:
So, my part's done. Lily, however, has a challenge today--everyone she invited to Laura's party seems to be coming...twenty-five adults and thirty-five children! (she usually gets about 12/16 or so...) How many pounds of hamburger for that many sloppy joes????
I'll let you know if the drama unfolds tomorrow....

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Stop the World, I Want to Get Off

I realize that it's well over a week since I've posted.

I wanted to post some photos of little things I'm working on; need new batteries in the camera.

I wanted to tell you about things going on in my family; can't get my thoughts together.

I wanted to share some cool thoughts I've been thinking; see above.

And now it is the week before our new church dedication on Sunday, and we were at church last evening until 9:30 pm, Charming at music practice, Susan at dance practice, Alvin at youth prayer service, and I running from girls' costumes to banners to watching the Big Practice to Waiting for People. When we got home last night, Alvin and Susan asked me to rub their feet before bedtime. Charming got in line for that!

Did I tell you I volunteered to make four girls' dance pants? There was NO ONE ELSE, and I know I can sew them in 45 minutes each. (not counting cut-out time, but that is manageable, too. If you've ever sewn flannel pj pants, you know they are easy to assemble. And I have until Saturday morning to finish them. Can you tell I'm trying to convince myself that I was not insane to volunteer?

Yesterday, Alvin did math and history; Susan did math and science. That's all, and for once in my life I wasn't fretting about what didn't get done. We did a thorough job on those two subjects, and others will follow today and tomorrow.

I thank God that every week is not like this one. This is one of those weeks like when you are moving into a new house--eventually it will be over, and what is left at the end is a beautiful thing. Sunday night is our dedication ceremony. Fifteen churches are cancelling their evening service so that their pastors can celebrate with us. Several dignitaries, including our Congressman, will be attending. Reception following, and I'm not involved with that, so no cleanup for me!

WHEN I get batteries in the camera, you can see my cute things! Maybe tomorrow...

Thanks for listening. Love you guys.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Major and Minor Irritants

We are having our first Sunday morning service in our new church building tomorrow morning!

You need to know that this building was the former home of a large church that had a devastating split, in disgrace, that made Big News locally. Months later, the pastor died, and it was All To Be Hashed Over Again. Our church received dozens of grieving families in the months following, who, incidentally, will be returning to their former church "home," home now to our part of the Body.

We have an Enemy who is not happy about all this. The Lord has told our leadership that this is the beginning of a great move of ministry, and that forgiveness and healing will be one of the results.

Blackeyed Susan is part of the program for Dedication Sunday, October 21st. The enemy has been hard at work in ways big and small, trying to hamper God's work. Of the two dance leaders/choreographers, one's husband has had a heart attack, and the other has had physical injury. Rehearsals have been plagued by "mysterious" fire alarms (no fire, no one pulled the box, etc.)

Blackeyed Susan was the target the other day. Charming took us, Joe Hardy, Forget-me-not, Blueberry, and nephew Derek to Pizza Hut the other day. We came home to a severed bicycle lock:
This happened about one p.m. Susan and Alvin Fernald's bicycles were locked together on the front porch. Someone cut the cable, moved Alvin's bike out of the way, took Susan's, and left Alvin's (whose bike was on the "outside," if someone wanted to be in a hurry). This was done in full view of a crew of three housepainters directly across the street, and with Charming's car in the driveway. All of those things which would tell you that nobody would be Stupid Enough to try such a stunt. And yet they did.
Susan and I talked about Job, and how Satan had to come before God and request to mess with him. First the Lord said, yes, but don't touch his body: later, He allowed that, but not to the point of death. We talked about how the enemy can't hurt us without our Father's knowledge; that everything must come through His hand.
This was a Minor Irritation in the big scheme of things. There were others (my dryer "stopped working" for three days, but is back again); there may be others still. Tuesday night at worship practice, another "fire alarm blip" caused a tiny interruption in power, and wiped out the entire sound board pre-sets (twenty-plus man-hours of work). Things were righted after a few minutes (and prayer, of course!)--Charming mentioned how if this had happened in a worldly setting, the profanity would have been flying...
How grateful I am that we are in the Father's hand, and that the Word promises us that nothing can remove us. We walk in His protection, so that if and when we fall prey to the enemy's works, we can call on our Father's name, and He will be there, to walk through them with us.
In other news, Sweet Pea had to go to the doctor this week to get her head super-glued after catching the corner of the coffee table:
What a wonderful thing--super-skin-glue!
Well, I am off to the Open House Tour at church--I got lost three times Wednesday, getting back up front from the back of the building. I am pathetic with navigation...

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Straightening Out My Head

A busy week this week (now, really, people, when is a week NOT busy?). Charming has been working "opens," which means he needs to be at work at 5 a.m. Sunday night, I set the alarm for 4 a.m. Unbeknownst to me, while I was setting "alarm," my finger slipped to the "time" button, and I added an hour to the time, as well. Charming dutifully sat up when the alarm went off, and set off to the shower. He came right back, saying, "hon, it's only three o'clock." I checked my wristwatch, and, sure 'nuff, I had messed up the alarm. Charming noticed, because he had glanced at the clock in my sewing room. This was a clock left over from when Forget-me-not used that room. It is an LED clock with three-inch high numbers, glowing brightly. I was pretty grateful that we have that clock, because I don't think Charming would have been too happy to arrive at work at 4 a.m!

Working "opens" means he needs to get to bed early (tho' that seldom happens), and there is really no time to have Quality time with him. Monday night, I took Blackeyed Susan to a dance rehearsal at church for our Dedication Ceremony in two weeks. She also has regular ballet on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, as well as regular Wednesday night church. Last evening, I walked in the door as Charming went out, going to music practice at church (he plays this Sunday). He got home late (10 p.m.) and I was feeling really sorry for myself at the lack of "us"-time, when he told me that today (Wed) he works the closing shift! He will go to work at 2 p.m. and we will have an extended Coffee Time on the porch, while the children do schoolwork.

We have our first service in our new facility this Sunday. We moved into a larger church that had experienced a tragic church split. Another church (located across from a Christian university) bought our former church, and the university bought their church. I think it must truly be a miracle to have a three-way real-estate deal where everyone comes away satisfied!

The enemy is doing everything he can to frustrate the plans the Lord has for us. At music practice last evening, the fire alarm went off (by mistake?), causing a power "bleep," that wiped out the pre-sets on the sound system. This meant twenty man-hours of work Gone. Everyone prayed, and after twenty minutes or so, Charming heard the sound engineer say, "there it is."

Charming mentioned to the others present that, had this happened in a worldly setting, how the cursing would fly. Frankly, when I am that frustrated, those words sometimes come to my mind. But it is a testimony to God's faithfulness, and the maturity of these men, that they would deal with whatever had to be done, even if it all had to be done over.

My dryer went out over the weekend, and Charming won't be able to look at it until Thursday, so Lily let me bring over three loads of wet laundry. I love the way she blessed me by folding the clothes, but (since she is a pg mom of three -under-five) left the towels unfolded . I am such an all-or-nothing girl, I would have folded all or none, either leaving a wrinkled mess of the clothes, or done unnecessary work (because we all know that Alvin Fernald and Blackeyed Susan need something to do while I read aloud!)

Tonight the new church is only holding the Youth Service, no men's, women's, or children's classes. I will be there to work on the four new banners for the Dedication Ceremony. Our banner-leader says that the work will be completed on time, I'm just a-beadin' and a-trimmin' whatever she says. I love it because I am working with women who I didn't know very well before, and gleaning wisdom from them as we work.

Well, this post has been rambling, if nothing else. Maybe I just needed to straighten my thoughts out before my day begins. Now, off to schoolwork, then COFFEE with my honey!