Thursday, January 19, 2017

New Post, Old Post

The sixth grader..slouches, earplugs in...all absorbed in winding bobbins!!


We now celebrate our dear Evan
Teachers report that today he has re-taken his exams and done very well.
We all freaked when our A student failed two finals...
He just did not know how to study.
Now I am getting emails on how smart, such a good worker...etc..
Bursting with pride.
Tonight, he fretted that he...does not like the "no weekday " electronic rule!
All the children take advantage of Grandma's rules when Mommy visits....
including Mommy.
I gave Evan a consequence of going to bed 30 min early tonight,
or missing the electronics on Friday night.
He chose the former...smart boy.
He was at odds.with "nothing to do".
Alas..after much moping...he decided to fill bobbins for me and use the radio to help him.
He took the radio from up stairs, plugged it into his I-pad, attached his earplugs to the I-pad, 
The radio was plugged in to the wall.
The I-pad was plugged into the radio.
The earplugs were plugged into the I-pad
The earplugs were plugged into the boy....for music....and..
Evan was plugged into his.sewing machine.
Quite a sight...
My Grandboy WOUND 31 bobbins for me on his own sewing machine as I sat at the computer.
He chose what  colors a quilter should need.
So proud..so happy...so helpful.
OOPs...time gone by so fast missing bedtime
Old grandma was totally happy with her blind eye.
Time well spent.

Big problem..
Evan said that he could not sew because I dumped all my stuff on his sewing table!!
Really, who would do that.????
Now...his table is all clean, bobbins all wound and neat.
and MY table,, MY sewing room MY fabric...is big awful mess..
Grandma promised not to mess HIS table again....
I so wish I had  bought more chocolate ice cream.
I just might have promised the impossible.

Another block made for a friend...It is called 30's Pinwheel in a square!
Fun and easy...

, I am auditioning more choices for my Civil War sampler.
I hate what I had planned before..
 I see this strip is too dark.
Sometime it takes putting it out there to see the mistake,
And to share the process with all the world.. to see.

When my Dear Man died, I took his "hospital" room for my second quilting room
I thought, for sure that I would have so much space..
I would  be tidy forever.
NOT!!!
God help me, I need organizational help.(among other things)

The spring in Charlotte...the summer for Lynsey
The fall for my love....no one knowing the winter was soon.
It is Time to Say Goodbye
 My love I miss  you so...
 My favorite photo.

Mother, with your quick wit and your beloved words, your big heart of love.
I never knew that you were old.
This picture was you!!  Yes, you....coming home from lunch bunch in February.
You fell from your wheelchair in May, the day before your birthday.
Maybe 93 was old for some, but not for my mother.
Life as I knew it, was shattered in an instant.
The Prayer

Then...The Rose
The pain of loss and the comfort of grace..
Always with me every second of every day.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

The Unexpected Dash.

Mrs. O'Quilts was a busy lady today.
Children up and at um at 6:30, bus at 7;15.
Evan up at 7:30. He made his lunch.
He left at 8.  Clean teeth, clean body, clean clothes.
All by himself...the growing up 6th grader...Wonder what her name is...Ha!!
Grandma slept, ate lunch out and slept some more.
.Karate, then..Oh, my...
Two teachers emailed me that my dear boy  had failed the final exam.
Hmmmm...He had been doing so well.
But the new Christmas X-box one...has had an obsessive influence.
Bam..goes Grandma...no technology on school nights...Waaa..waaa.
Next:  Three hours showing the darling how to study for a re-take..
We were both exhausted.
This was sad as he has had an A in both classes.  This brings it all down to Bs
He cried.
Tomorrow, he will hit the studying the minute the bus comes home.
Quiet now...sewing.

Today's treat...The return of the churn dash..
Picture does not do justice to the lovely softness of this block.
My fox has been on my door design wall for a few years...OMG
At the retreat, I was able to secure it with a blanket stitch.
Now it is ready to be put into a baby quilt.
 I worked on the border for my group sampler at my retreat.
It was annoying to make this border.
I was thrilled.  Now that I am home, I see it is way too busy.
Starting again, I must make a simple border for this sampler.
Grrrr
 
Good news.:
My son called.  Someone approached him while he was flying his sign for money.
The man asked him if he wanted to work.
Oh, yes, he said.  My son is a wonderful worker.
He has already worked an entire week. He sleeps no charge in the man's work trailer.
He has made an appointment with us to see his children Sunday in the park.
A day of hope.
So it goes...
xxoo

Monday, January 16, 2017

Back from Super Fun Quilting Retreat with my peeps.

Getting ready for this trip, I went to Trader Joe's
I was humming along, picking out treats for the retreat.
Out of the blue, I burst into tears at the cash register.,
Then, I told my story.
They gave me flowers.
I wanted to cry but I could not.  I was already crying.
MP....a dear friend to us all...provided much needed respite for a three day weekend to quilt...quilt...and quilt...in her mountain house..I just got home this evening.
The Adventure of Grief......TED
Here we all are..:  9 sewing machines and 10 women.
The oldest member will be 100 in June, so she does not have a machine any more.

The top of the driveway leading to the lake.
Here, my darlings, Boo and Stitch, wait for me to get home.
Minnie is wearing Mickey pajama..... on sewing in your jammies day
Here are some of the projects I worked on:
The divided four patch...Tute found on Missouri Star.
I hated making it.  Too confusing...so I only made 9 for maybe a medallion later on.

 I had a million or so, solid charms cut out already, so I switched to this:
Much easier and more relaxing..
Drenna made this baby quilt from scratch to finish...
She did such a wonderful job..

At least five of us were working on disappearing 9 patch...I will show you next time.
They are all so different.
R and R...so needed and so much fun.
I only cried once.
Since fun is so exhausting...I am off to bed.
Thank  you MP  and a big thanks for the support of my quilting peeps
xxoo

Saturday, January 7, 2017

It is a God thing

The snowy day project.
Instead of finishing the multitude of unfinished...just sayin'
Tonight, I started something new.
I have a million, or so pre-cuts that I got from online sales while in despair..
I found these tonight and started "Jelly Beans"  from Thimble Blossoms.
Of course, flying by the seat of my pants, as I do....I did not read the directions and put the corners on...all wrong.
Tomorrow is another iced in day.
The Charlotte snow day left us with barely a half an inch of snow..and plenty of ice.
Of course, school. closed on Monday.  The South cannot handle much winter weather.  Stephanie and Stasi cannot get into the neighborhood to help...All frozen out ...
Old tired me, with three young children and four animals..."snowed in"  ha ha.
I almost had a heart attack when I found the internet and TV with no power.
But the God thing kept the electricity on and soon the rest resumed.
Oh, well....we are doing the best we can.
I found the hidden Halloween candy..It .makes it so much easier..
Here we have the kids sledding with Zoe....Trying to make the most of a little bit of snow.
.My idea of joy...a nap by the fabric..
Evan wants to be a mechanical engineer...He put two flashlights into a green water cup..voila.
This may not be engineering stuff, but it is creative and that is what counts.


Guess what????
I have not talked to my son in forever.
We are having a snow storm and temperatures of 5 degrees F
Of course, I imagined my smart and kindhearted wonderful son
frozen to the pavement in his homeless location.
Alas...He called tonight quite chipper.
While flying his sign on the highway...
He saw a girl he knew from UNCC
She stopped and gave him a hotel for 4 nights
$50 gift card to the grocery store and $20.
He called from there to tell me not to worry.
He had a shower for the first time in a month.
It is a God thing.
The stories;
#1..I decided to call my mother's best friend to wish her Happy New Years.
She is 95 and lives alone.
It was in reaching out to someone else, that the gift became mine.
She knew my family well thru chats with my mother...as girl friends do.
She lost her own son a few years back from tongue cancer.
On this call, she leveled my mind.
She told me that the stress of the children still living now with their parents,
would be much worse for me, than the stress of them being here with Grandma.
Got me thinking...she was right.
From age 95, she told me that life was hard..for all of us.
She told me that she woke up one morning when she was young and her husband
was dead in the bed beside her..a heart attack..She had young children.
She said that when people ask her how she is...She always smiles and says "fine".
And when she says "fine". 
 It becomes  fine.
I do not know about that.....but..
I felt like I was talking to my mother again.


#2. I went to Walmart to prepare for this storm..
I live tucked in the woods with all my dogs and cats and three grands.
If it snows, I cannot get  up out of my driveway, nor can I get up out of my neighborhood.
I bought ice melt, dog food, cat litter, etc.
Sustenance for the family:  candy canes on sale for 27 cents, after Christmas sales.
.
Old Grandma needed help loading the supplies into the car.
Along came Tye, my very favorite of all workers there.
As he loaded, we chatted.
He and his 4 siblings were raised by his Grandmother.
She was 70 when she took them.
She died last  year at 95.  His tears welled.
Tye is 25.
I gave him the grandmotherly lecture of going back to school.
We chatted about happenstance and the hand of God,
about serendipity and this crazy life.
The term, "old soul" came to mind.
Really, if you have it at 25, for sure you will have it forever.
He is happy and positive and helping.
Our chat outside of Walmart gave me hope.
Tye was the breath of fresh air that I needed that morning.

Someone told me once that when I was whining that I had no one and no support, etc.
Good Lord am I a great whiner...!!
He said that I was looking in the wrong places.
He was right.  I am now looking everywhere..grateful..
and doing the best I can.

A Southern Snow Day....thank you Paula

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Quilting for Solace

For my birthday...from Katie...a gift cert to Hawthorne threads...Oh, my
Look at the loot.  Adorable fabric...
This introduced me to a new to me fabric site.
I am so happy......cannot wait to cut into this.

I am sewing...4 inch squares...here.
 and finishing...
I put the binding on these two quilts yesterday..
Done and gifted already.
The sweater that was too sizes too small for me with wool holes.
I could not bare to let it go..Here we go with still another pincushion.
 N
Not about to be left alone on New Year's Eve,  after my birthday fiasco..
 I invited a few quilters from my widow's group..We are trying to find a name a bit more classy than the Wine-ing Widows quilting club...ha ha..
..Here are three of us anyway..The sleepy old women went home at 8.  Ha!!Ha!!

You know I should never post at night...dismal loneliness on missing my man
creeps up and grabs me by the heart... I am not used to whining in silence...
So, here we go!
The children came home today from their cousins' house.
They cannot wait to go and they cannot wait to come home.
Just like most of us.
Saintly Stephanie was  here on a minute...yeah!!
Widow group goes out to dinner next Friday.
Grandma O'Quilts has no baby sitter.
Oh, well...It is worth it to be with my darlings.,after all
I just had 6 days off.  I slept all day today to get ready!!!

The eleven year old pretty much takes care of himself with lots of neighborhood friends.
He just has a bit of a mouthy nature...pre-adolescent.
The two little ones need more care.

Hilarious, Dylan turns 7 in February.  I say to him...Oh, No...please do not turn 7,
I just love  you being 6,
 He says back...I will try not to, Grandma, but I might have to...So adorable..

Fighting off despair tonight with Charlie Pride on U-tube and making a dolly quilt.
My mother always said, when you feel badly yourself..do something nice for someone else.
Thank you Mom...again..

Sunday, January 1, 2017

From Thailand with Love , Happy New Year!!

A delivery for New Year's to make it so special!
 For our New Year cheer and my birthday,  came a myriad of surprises.
My heart and ...my girl...From elephant land came:
Fabric...and more...
Treats...I especially love the little round circles.
Since I am starting to feel better, I am actually brushing my hair and...
caring a bit more about how I look..Voila.... a necklace and more.
A stunning shawl...
Voile...shawl..or table runner or fabric to use and pet and love...
Love, especially..
Fabric...two yards each...one yard for my sister and one yard for me!!
I already washed each piece alone with a piece of white cloth..
No color bleeding...Perfect!
She sent Thai chips and snacks in a big exciting box.
for the children.
I opened it at midnight on New Year's Eve.

I have let go of a lot of illusion of control in my life...
I am working on acceptance of life on life's terms..Grief has humbled me.
I am even eating veggies
lol
This package is the beginning of good things for the New Year for our family.
So grateful for these past days to rebuild my emotional strength.
So grateful for my girl.
xxoo

PS..I saw a college age girl at a store the other day.
She was wearing a sweatshirt in Yale colors.
But, instead of Yale, it said Kale....lol

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Happy Birthday to my sister...12-28------

My sister's birthday was celebrated at our quilting group on Wednesday night
She came right from work...and celebrate we did.
She is 11 years and 11 days younger than I am..
Of course, she is a quilter.
 About 15 years ago, we were in Mountain City, Tennessee browsing through
a huge and lovely antique shop. She bought this vintage top for a few dollars.
When she moved last  year, I snuck or did sneak...lol... it away from her..
.Last night I quilted it!!
Surprise!!!!!.
 I backed it with feathers...I made a pincushion for her too, but where are the pictures???
Mudbrain..
I am often saved by the bell..Christmas eve dinner was saved by my DIL, who remembered tradition
She also remembered the cleaning up...good girl.
My sanity is being saved this weekend by Aunt Brandy who has the children for 6 days giving me a vacation of a lifetime.  I was actually relaxed today.
I stopped by the mall for the first time in a year.
I found some pants that fit my ever growing bottom,  The clerk said that they just went on sale today.She just happened to have an extra 20% off coupon.
Lucky me...It is a God thing.
Because..I am doing well today.

I heard from my girl.
 She had been in Big Sur, California...having a drink with her man in an interesting restaurant, Nepenthe.
She noticed Kaffe Fassett fabric at the cashier's.
Wasn't she surprised to come  upon a bit of history.. Wow.!!
Kaffe Fassett's family homestead and restaurant
Happiness is:
Thriving, growing, healthy, healing, stable and delightful grandchildren!!!
xxxooo
I love you so.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

The Year We Had Lima Beans for Christmas Dinner

And Grandma forgot the Christmas crackers, and the cats ruined the tree,
and we were sad without the kid's daddy and sad without Granddaddy and sad without
Great-grandma, and sad without Aunt Emily, Uncle Brian, Uncle Ray and Aunt Alicia.
But we had lima beans and a lovely time.
Actually, the reason for the season came alive as Evan lighted a candle for Granddaddy.
Lynsey composed a Christmas song which she played on the piano that she cannot play.
She said a grace that she learned at Aunt Brandy's house.
We all said words of gratitude.

 Santa must admire two brothers getting along on Christmas Eve...
Eleven and six years old.
Voila, the family I did not have...
Looks like I had been  looking at my thunderstorms
instead of my rainbows...three children, my sister and niece
My DIL and future Step SIL??
Finally Grandma got out of her sad recliner to  make Christmas cookies
and fudge.  I am glad that I made the effort.
My DIL decided that lima beans and Bagel bites pizza were not Christmas Eve
material, so she brought steak...I cooked it...It was perfect.
She persuaded Evan that the mini pizzas were better on Christmas Day and he agreed!!

Lynsey was in charge of arranging the sweets for dessert.
We all ate too many of them.
DIL is spending the night..
Santa has come and sleep is coming for the grownups.
Oh, Dear me..this is no longer a Christmas Eve post.
It is now Christmas Day.
Merry Christmas everyone.!!
PS
I have to include a sewing project:
A sewing project for Stephanie for Christmas.

Plastic Bag holder tutorial
This tute is close to the one I used.
I did not line mine and I did  not quilt mine.
Really, I used Muggs', cutting piece 20x25.
Using elastic on top and bottom.
6.5 inches on bottom and 11inches of 1/4 inch elastic
I also used just plain cotton..Stephanie wanted Ball teams for hers
Muggs gave me one years ago for Christmas and we have forever used it in the pantry.
Now, another Merry Christmas and to all a good  night!
xxoo.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

The Holiday Begins...

The first cheer of the season is from our dear Eithne...
Fine, Stitch...show off...Sorry Eithne..
 
 The holiday outfit for Lynsey's doll.
.Can you believe the work, the knitting, the pleated skirt.
The little snowman pin, the gloves, the bow...
xxxxoooo Eithne!!
 The slap happy mantel decoration..wreath from Guatemala
and, lights from IKEA  
With three children and three cats...LED lighting is the safer approach.
My birthday was the17th.
It was hard.
My love was no where to be found.
I have had emails galore, texts, cards and three birthday parties
Saturday night a beautiful Christmas party.
The core problem was still there.
Grief has a will of its own.
Thank you..Stephanie for cheering my day with a lovely cake...
and three darlings singing the birthday song
Love lifts me up..
 A big thanks for all the support and parties from my Wednesday night group 
and the emails and cards and wishes from everyone.
MP knitted the washcloth in my kitchen colors..
 
 My Winey Widows quilting group gave me fat quarters, friendship
and a lovely dinner.
Holiday grief ...wham...Uncontrollable.
How can I cry so??
How can I be so sad??
Look what I have to make me happy!!
 So proud to share the holidays with the kids...
They are thriving.


Gratitude...and love...
Six year old Dylan receives his black belt...yeah!!!
Catching up with his siblings...
It is hard to be the third child.
..His aunts could not come, His mother could not come.
I am not sure he minded...
He was happy with Ms Stephanie, Grandma, his siblings and the $5 I gave him in pride.
My DIL rides another roller coaster of grief and addiction.
The holidays make things worse.
So I guess I will have a new SIL even though my DIL of 12 years is not really
my DIL and my own son is still in the woods, homeless on Heroin.
It gets so complicated. I try to remember Vicktor Frankl
I try to remember gratitude.
I try to remember that I am not in control of anything but myself...
And hardly that even..It is true that I do not post when I am in despair.
No school tomorrow...all the I-pads are plugged in.
And I am sleeping in...Yeah!!
And so the holidays start..

Joy (e) with an e....please email me  your address...so we can chat...lol