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Friday, May 17, 2013
Friday, May 17, 2013 @ 2 pm
Hi Hi ... this is me. We're going to write a short one today because we only have about 1 1/2 hours. There's so much going on that it is a little mind-boggling, but at the same time it's regular kind of stuff that is happening now a days. There are some general highlights. One of the things is that we have been cutting out in the sunroom, though this week seems to be a bit of a bye. In general though we've been working on quilts for the church world relief. I've gotten done with six quilts so far. Two of them have been handed in and their are four more here waiting.
One of the coolest things happening now is that we met a woman by the name of Carol and her daughter Bridgette, they and Carol's DIL have started a meet-up group called Northern Illinois (NI) scrapbookers, stampers, and quilters. Last Friday was my first meet-up. There were only two of us there to quilt - both Carol and myself, but both of us have an interest in getting together regularly, so we scheduled the following Friday which is today - to be quilting together again. I'm so excited. It has been almost one of the top highlights of the day.
There was another highlight in that we've been using the space in front of the house to be hanging out, especially since we started mowing the grass with the new lawnmower Rich got. I've mowed 4 times and he's mowed 2 times ... so you can imagine we're looking pretty spiffy. Yesterday while we were out there, we noticed that there was a bird's nest over the light next to the external front door, and then we were flown over by a robin who claimed the area, and then today we had the insight to hold a camera over our head toward the nest to see if anything was in there ... AND, surprise of surprises, but there were little birds just hatched. We have left the area alone the rest of the day, but we will want to be using our front patio before the birds have left the nest. Last night though when we were out there, the father bird was having a bad meld-down ... he kept chirping loud and expressive and he was flashing his tail which caused even more attention to him. SO, we finally left the area. Obviously today we know why he was so concerned.
We looked at a video on YouTube and found there was another person who had taken pictures daily of the birds above her lights too and it was put to music really nicely. It showed the progression of the little birds from fluffy "red" that we have to leaving the nest within about 12-14 days. It's going to go fast. I felt a little bad though because one of the responders to my facebook entry on the bird was my DIL and she stated that my granddaughter was going to need learn when coming over next that the baby birds she was watching were eaten. I feel really bad for her, but hope she has interest in sharing my birds with me. Just these are out of her day to day life. I'm really ready to share though. AND, we're hoping that our baby birds don't get eaten. We'll give them as wide a berth as we can.
As to the quilting at Carol's though ... again we had a very great time. She seems very much like me, but she's probably more professional, and she's had about 20 years of quilting experience in front of me. That's ok ... then at least there is someone to answer questions. YAY!!! She's just really nice and sometimes we talked and sometimes we just worked, but it was all good. She has too an interesting life I get the gist of in that she works for a day care agency which seems much like the center we used to work at as to staff, program management, etc. She's into the financial computer end of things. Really good conversations.
Carol is the quilter, her daughter Bridgette is the scrapbooker, and her DIL Cheryl is the stamper. They have formed this group of about 48 people, but they said only about half are active and have come to their meet-ups. They have a nice space down in their basement and I could foresee many days down there. Even if it were only Carol and I with an open invitation to others, it's someone to quilt with that I'm interested in being with. I feel really lucky to have met her. Her place is in Dekalb which is about 35 minutes from here. It's not so bad though Rich is complaining about the long drive so late at night. The event is supposed to last from 6-12 and last time it was carried a little late. BUT, this time we'll start at 4:30 pm, so maybe we'll leave a little early. Hard to tell ... once you get started then it is like newfound energy because your working synergestically.
Oh oh ... seeing a spot of rain clouds in the horizon. We had just gone for a bathroom, popcorn, coffee break. I'm going to need to assure that all the windows are closed before we go. I did like the little bit of coolness that it had included. I just see a few raindrops on the window. Maybe there won't be much more included than that. I think overcast is good for Rich though. He is with the fishy guys this weekend. His partner is Jim Gumm and they left about 5:30 am this morning. He will be back Sunday night and then Rich's brother is coming over maybe for pizza and then Rich's son Jon will come over for a few days next week when his mother is on vacation. After that Rich's friends might come over on the 26th which is Memorial Day Sunday and the group that were invited were Bob, Jack and Doug, AND their women. It should be really fun, but we're not sure now who all is coming.
Originally then Saturday the 1rst we are supposed to going sewing on Saturday with the girls, but that's up for grabs right now ...Linda and Emily won't be there, so we suggested two other dates in June that might be ok if anyone were innterested in getting more people together, and if a hotel meeting room could be arranged. If not ... I'm perfectly fine with only meeting Jean, Janet and CS and shouldering my part of the added expense of having two people missing. The important thing is that we mean to be sewing with our friends. Our alternative dates that we know to be agreeable with Linda are June 15th and 29th.
After that Rich's daughter Jillian is expected to stay a few days and I believe she's coming in on Tuesday June 4th. She'll stay toward the beginning and ending of her vacation. In the middle she'll stay at her mothers, but Rich is on the side that will get her back and forth from the airport. We'll try to keep meeting with Carol on Friday nights, but we've also scheduled a trip up to MN with Rich on Sunday June 23rd through Wednesday June 26th. The first and last day will be all travel. I really look forward to getting away just with Rich. It will be our first vacation together for this year. I have to admit too though that the fishing and quilting trips are like vacations too - just that they are separate.
Trips to Dr. Marvin's have been good and things seem busy. We have been trying very hard to do things as we would ideally like especially including household and yard. We have to stand-up/sit-down 7-8 times to get the lawn done, but we're happy that we are doing it. I haven't gained or lost weight though we're holding steady. We're doing pretty good with the incentive to be doing the little houses, but Rich is falling down on his part which isn't helping the motivation. He had said he'd contribute, but the money is actually coming from my account and even the money towards the little buildings that his aunt and uncle gifted us with went to quilting with the group last Saturday instead of buying house or two. I suppose the deal is that it's all coming out of my account and that has to be the right thing to do, but after we used his aunts and uncles money toward the weekend, then he wouldn't allow more money to go out toward the little houses. We've been counting forward of March 16th so there was 15 days for March, 30 days for April, and now 17 days for May, plus 30 more for weight loss. So not including the gift we should have $62 from the being domestically Goddest plus $30 for weight = $92 minus $46 for the first house, but we got a $4 rebate so $92 - $42 (including tax) means already $50 not spent yet PLUS the extra gift money. I'm probably a "little person" for being so concerned, but we've worked very hard even on the days we don't want to get dressed or clean ... Just saying is all. It's only $1 a day shouldn't be so hard :(
Woohoo and OH NO ... we just won another bid on ebay which SEEMS like a good deal because it's 50 FQ for $29 + shipping = $41 ... it's like .82 cents per piece ... just its adding up ... we've spent about $90 total and Rich doesn't know all that we have :(
AHHH Linda is back and shes conquested TWO NEW LR CHAIRS! WoohOOO! Better get going ... we'll talk about ten more minutes and then we'll have to go ... or should we say GET to go!
Posted by Ann Marie at 3:35 PM
Monday, May 6, 2013
Thursday, March 2, 2013 @ 6:59 AM
Good morning. This is me and we're feeling suddenly pretty smart. We figured out how to take care of the backlight on our new chrome computer ... there wasn't anything on the settings page and we tried an app that didn't work, but then we thought to look where the function keys are and wallah! There it was a sun with bigger or smaller rays coming from it. It must have been touched accidentally yesterday to make it dimmer. What a relief!
Yesterday turned out to be a nice day ... I think that we charted it for the most part, but in general we set-up the sewing room to be cutting and ironing (small stuff) and then we saw the neighbor across us to the north doing the neighbor to the west lawn mowing, and so we went out and started to do our lawn, and then we met again the neighbor to the south ... we talked and we showed him the place, and then when we got out the neighbor to the north had come over and started to help us mowing the back ... it was just the nicest thing. We went out then to talk and the three of us, especially the two guys caught up, and then we excused ourselves to do the front, and then after a rest or two we met up with the guy doing our SW corner. The neighbor to the south - Don had gone home by that time - he had done his lawn and the neighbor to the west of Joe's (north neighbor) lawn the day before. These seem to be the nicest guys ... they were saying they were just being neighborly.
I had offered Joe a bottle of water, and then we'd offered later a beer, but he rejected both and let us know that neither his wife or him drank. We ended up on the East (front) side of our place talking and talking. He did most the talking, but we got in a few things too. He like the guy who had lived here before are both story-tellers. We must have been out there for about an hour. I think the basic summary of all that is that he's a nice guy, his wife still works, but he is retired maybe early, but most likely from a disability ... he has epilepsy. His wife Barb works for NICOR Gas - our local gas company. No, we asked they don't get discounts. We talked about things in general like about his place, a little about our place, and then he told us about a lot of his buildings he'd owned. We know he was married before and that he's been here for eight years and other general stuff, and then he pretty much told us the names of most the neighbors - of the 35 buildings in our park. Nothing negative or indepth personality speaking, but most like her name is Diane and she's on her own, or the next one is so and so and she is living with her mother. He also told us about people who'd moved in our out and that a couple people had places that burnt down or moved their building. He worked hard to stay away from the judgmental gossipy stuff ... just the brief summary which I really appreciated. At one point afterward I saw one of the golf carts coming down the street and I thought ... hey that's Abe! It was just a stray fact we'd picked up that Abe was on his own and was older and had a cart. We talked about carts in particular and there seem to be 3-4 on the block and people just use them for fun to ride down the street or to take grandchildren out. It's kind of fun, BUT Rich isn't going with the part that everyone on the block has one and we NEEED one!
I am more certain though that I need to walk so I can get the exercise needed and get to know the neighborhood some. We also were told when Cheryl was driving down the road ... she's the land owner we're renting from. I had told Joe we hadn't met her yet and he said she keeps very busy. She didn't slow down or anything but she waved. I think I would almost recognize her, but not really well. It was just a quick look. We both smiled though so that was nice.
After a while he thought his wife would be home soon and I think he was remembering that he had a few more tasks on the neighbors place to the west. So, I went in and he went back to work. We must have looked at the computer a awhile, and then we worked more on the cutting. Rich called to ask if I'd eaten yet and we told him honestly that we'd only had ice cream for dinner ... so when he got home he made some spaghetti and we had a chance between things to talk to Linda which was nice.
Posted by Ann Marie at 8:58 AM
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Wedenesday, May 1, 2013 @ 7:11 am
Good morning. This is me and we're up sorta earlier. We got up with Rich - in that after his shower, he woke us up to spend time with him ... He only had 10-15 minutes, and then we fell back to sleep on the recliner, and then just a few moments got up and it's just after 7 am now. We did just take our medicine so we are all good there. I was thinking yesterday that was part of the problem. I was getting offset by it being later and I am thinking now it is he same with our nighttime medicine. Rich has been "checking" us in that he says we are being grouchier in the evening. It seems we settle into the couch before taking the 7 pm medicine, and then we get overwhelmed with ourselves and we get grouchy at him because we don't want to move. I'm thinking before that we just want to get to the couch as soon as we can because we are already feeling tired. Just that we're going to probably need doing something like in the morning where we set an alarm again to alert us to the proper time. It's a little vague now that the sun is setting so late in the day ... it doesn't SEEM like it's time though it is.
Ok, enough of that. How exciting can medicine be? I'm trying to figure out why I'm thinking it's such a science. We know we're supposed to do it at 7 am and 7 pm. Shouldn't be anything mysterious past that, right? Maybe we're dealing with our own inertness again. Hmm, it's happened in the past you know?
Last night we did ok about half the way home which was like 20 minutes. Then Rich was saying that he wanted to stop at the grocery store for buns to go with ham, and then he was saying that he needed to stop by at his mother's first, and then we got cranky because it was after 7 pm and we hadn't eaten dinner and he was planning all these extra activities, between that time and getting to eat. I thought we'd done well with it during the game ... and even had popcorn so weren't totally out of order, but the thought of not getting dinner and being with the guy who is "supposed" to feed us ... ok, that's a maybe, but it didn't go well for him. We were able to control it so that we only had our unhappy face and weren't being aggressive, but it still wasn't the most pleasant.
I did have a funny thing that happened at the grocery store. In town we have a place called, Arts and we've been there waiting for Rich a few times. We were people watching as we usually are when he stops, but it was different because the number of people is way different in quantity and like the parking lot doesn't have that many cars and people are really in and out quickly. This one lady came out and I thought she seemed a bit like me in that she was heavier and didn't wear make-up giving her a kind of "farmer's wife" feeling. I obviously have no idea of this stereotype, but we're going with it for the moment.
We watched her get in the car and she puttered about in a distractive manner, and then she finally adjusted herself and was starting to look more about her because she was starting the process of moving her car. At one point, she caught us in her view and we tried to look away more discretely, but when we came back to looking at her, she was still looking at us - though starting to move. We had on our observational face which means we're attuned, but not smiling or anything. Then unexpectedly she smiled at us, and then we smiled automatically back at her with a big grin. That seemed so funny because it had in a sense turned us into the person being observed and in some small town friendly sensed manner ... it was ok that we were who/what we were and where we were and it was just a really nice warm sensation that was completely different then the situation of just watching people in their busy manerisms. We didn't tell Rich about it, but obviously it is still on our mind and that's a nice thing too. This woman out of the blue ... just because of a nice gesture like a smile had an impact on us ... and it was a good one :)
Hmm, it seems contrary to belief that roosters crow at odd times of the day other than sunrise ... there is one in the outskirts of our listening area and he's just going to town - at 7:30 am. We are in the sunroom and Missy is sitting acrossrom us. She seems to like the pink chair. I'm not sure where Chief is. He was out with us earlier, but left after we got up to go to the washroom. Eh, his loss.
We are kinda frustrated with him, because we caught him going to the bathroom in the sitting room - on the carpet. That had happened once before, but when Maury came the other day to drop the girls off he had said that he had smelled like that kind of behavior was starting to happen again ... he said it was faint, and then suggested that we get another litter box. I think that is a good idea now that we know it's starting to become a pattern - sure once is once, but more than once, seems to be a pattern. I'll talk to Rich about it in the next day or two when we get some time together.
Rich left about 6 am, and he had a full day of stops. Then he is having another game tonight and he said he won't be home until about 7 pm. SOOO, it is going to be a full day for us. We had been thinking already about bringing the drafting table out to the sunroom. We haven't gotten the logistics worked out, but after giving some thought to having Rich help us, he kind of disregarded those invisible suggestions. Eh so much for control and manipulation hehehe. We'll go in there maybe after we take our shower and see how hard it is to move. They are on direct opposite corners of the house. With Rich being gone for so long today we have some by-time in getting the kitchen table cleared off. Rich talked about doing his work on the table and that he woul do it when he got home, but we're totally against him working after being gone for 13 hours working already. Some time the guy needs to get some rest.
Ahh Chief is out now ... he's still sitting in the middle of the floor trying to figure out what he wants to do next. He's been taking an interest in the parimeters of the room to listen and watch for what is going on around him outside. I think the kitties are getting more used to the sounds of traffic and neighbors AND birds and such, but it's still really a new thing to them. I think they really appreciate the space though because they are almost ALWAYS out here with us and a few times we've found them out even without us here.
Rich opened a few windows and it is really pleasant as to temperature. It is the west side of the building and the sun is obviously on the other side so it isn't overly warm. Last night Rich had discovered about the time we were going to bed - well, I'd actually fallen asleep but he got us up to go to bed, and then he asked if we wanted to come out and sit with him. It didn't last too long, but we did come out and it was very very nice. It was dark and we didn't have any lights on, but the temperature was pleasant and funny enough - even though it was about 10 pm, there was still traffic coming in and out of the park. Not a lot, but a slow steady amount.
Hey ... which bird made that dropping on our window!?? It's a HUGE ugly. Grrr...
Ok, girls settle down. I don't know if we can reach it, but maybe Rich can help later ... It's obviously something we don't want to see when looking out our beautiful windows. Hmm, Chief is over by the window and is obviously interested in some birds out there. The window seems too high for him to look out, but he seems to be looking up toward the rain gutters and maybe the sky where he sees the birds flying this way and that. Trying to get an understanding of his game plan. Silly kitty.
AHA! That works! We decided to try out the extra cord that had been sitting in the corner that we used for the heater when Rich's Mom was here. AND, we ran it behind the couch and into the open sliding glass door and as it turned out there was a plug just behind the garbage by the side of the glass door. Purpose being ... we had been watching our battery in the computer and we hadn't plugged it in so we were starting to fret that we might have to stop writing before we were ready. BUT, WALLAH! Problem is solved and we're all plugged in. It wasn't very good planning, but the addition doesn't have any electricity. There will be so much going on out here that we're going to want to do something about that. Another frustrating part of all that is that we can't use the little fridge out here unless we have electricity. Now that it is starting to get real nice we're leaving the door open, but after we try the air conditioning we're not going to want and do that. Rich said something about trying it out over the next few days - now that we're in the 80's. We have over the last couple of days surprised ourselves with the simple find that we have real ceiling fans in both the bedroom and the living room. We've turned them on over the last couple of days and have been pleasnantly surprised! Another WALLAH!
I'm thinking that Chief wants a raised bed in the corner of the sunroom. He wants to look out there, but he's used to the cushy life of having something underneath him. I wonder what we could do there? I think his needs are going to have to come behind finding a good place for the drafting table and also accomodating Rich's mother when she's here. She'd occupied that same corner that I'm thinking for the drafting table and now the kitty wants to claim. We'll see. We'll also have to consider a chair for the drafting table. Rich seems to be using the 6th chair, but we're wondering if we had the drafting table out here if he wouldn't do more business out here where it's pleasant. We would have to come up with some arrangement for his myriad of paper work. We're kind of thinking that it would be a good time to come up with a new desk for his office so we could have this space out her for the fun stuff. Now tht we have a cord situated, we're thinking that we could plug in an extra 12 plug thingie and then we'd have plenty more than enough to set up a light on the table if we would need it or an iron.
Hmm, that has to be considered. I was just thinking we could put the table in front of the side door we're really not using and then the table could be beside us here and face out toward the three open windows. But, we'd forgotten that we usually use a side table for ironing while cutting. We do have the horizontal table out here too where we used to iron, but not sure how to best use it of again an ironing table space with our smaller ironing pads. Have to rethink this. It would mean putting the drafting table over where Missy's pink chair is. That is easy enough to move, but then we're in a position of possibly putting our back to the one window where we'd really like to be looking out and the table would be more into the regular part of the room rather than to the corner-side looking out.
Ahh Chief and Missy are both back out. They'd gotten up when we moved to do the plugs. They really are homey cats looking for the lap of luxury no matter where they turn. Missy is back to her chair and Chief is laying in the couch leaned up on our side.
I'm thinking now ... what happened if we moved TWO table out here? Pretty much meaning to move the movable sewing table to also be here for ironing. Maybe this would make sense ... I like it where it is now between the shelves in the sewing room, but we've taken to using the big ironing board in there so it is not as useful and pretty much buried by the bigger board. That's an idea. We could always move the wicker shelves more to the corner of the room. Just how would we situate the two tables and chair? Maybe we could put the ironing/sewing table against the wall where the loveseat is. I'm thinking we could then put the drafting table at an angle into the room. I would like it to face the inner part of the room instead of looking at the couch, but I'm not sure if there is enough space for that and a chair. I guess there is room for trial and error in that the couch and shelf can be moved further away and so we could still tuck a chair and be looking out from behind the table. We would have to keep the door locked, but that doesn't seem to be a problem. Plenty of other exits.
I guess at this point that is the best plan and we'd have to play it from there. Next would be just getting the drafting table and checking out our space. I'm thinking it would be ok if the ironing table was in back of the chair and desk then right to the right or left of it. That works to the best arrangement and it kind of hides the ironing operation. I'm thinking also because we'd be taking that table out, we could also bring out the floor light that is over that table now in the sewing room. That would help the space and get a good light out in this room. I have to admit it is nice to be incognito sitting here in the dark watching people go by, but sometimes especially during the summer months it's best to get this room used to the most we can be doing with it. Still have to worry about some leaking, but that would have to be resovled after we discovered that problem and where it would be coming down - and then we'd have to just call the people out from the warranty company anyway. That be the right thing to be doing.
I'm thinking that Rich is going to like working out here better than his office. In the morning he's been using his computer from the recliners, but we know given a choice, he'd rather be out here :)
Hmm, it's about 8:18 am now ... think we're going to check out what's happening online :)
We're back. We've been talking to Linda, and then we both moved on to our separate tasks. I should have taken a shower, but we decided to try out the drafting table and sewing table and chair to the sunroom space instead. I'm not real happy with it yet, but it has possibilities especially since it will be easier to adjust to the space then bringing all this stuff back to their respective rooms. We sat down to get a better feel of it. The first thing that has to happen when Rich gets to it is that the extra bars for the drawers and pencil tray ... have to all come off. It needs to be done with a hex tool. I will look for it just in case I can find it and do it myself, but we'll go with Rich for the main alternative. Its a simple thing if one has the tools. I don't know where he put everything out in the garage, but we left those tools with the extra stuff from the junk drawer. Hopefully, not too hard. Basically, those drawers and ledge are not important and will take 8-10 inches off the size of the table.
The sewing machine table takes up a lot of room against the house, but it can't go anywhere else, because with it at its side blocking the door, it is too wide to pull the table back. I don't however like how the table juts into the room in giving the chair enough space to turn. Maybe it will be better toward the window side and we'll try that out when we get up and go to the shower. Hmm, maybe stop by the junk drawer in case we can find those hex screwdrivers. Ok, I know I know ... no time like the present?
WooHOO! The job is all done and it is looking much better. I found the hex wrench AND the Philips screwdriver for the pencil thing. Now it doesn't look as balky AND we moved the shelves a little to the corner so the room seems better blocked. I still don't know how we're going to reach that bird dropping, but hopefully it will be done today too. Now I feel better about getting into the shower. I'm going to rest a few moments and watch the kitties check out the new arrangement, but I think it is much better. I pulled the desk toward the windows too so that the opening is in-between the couch and it giving it the feeling of being more space. There seems to be plenty of space for the chair too. I'm thinking Rich is really going to like this space for making calls. It's all good. I think too before the shower we will bring some of the other tools out like cutting board, rotary blade, rulers, and Iron. OH and we'll bring out some of the yellow fat quarters. WooHOO! Later in the day we might have to bring out one of the fans too, but with the fan over the bed, we should be able to use the bedroom fan out here. Good stuff!
Hmm, ok, so anything else need to be discussed? I'm sorta glad now that CS reminded us of my father's table now belonging to Nathan because I'd given up the furniture. The table would have been too big out here. I'm happy with the drafting table being about half the size, but very comfortable for one-two people. We'll worry about the day we have a poker tournament when that time comes up hehehe. Oh yeah ... I forgot ... we're going to bring out the lamp too from the sewing room. I guess we have some back and forth to do. I'm thinking that if we had it on at night, we would just pull down the shade so that only the light could be seen under that - and not the shade itself. That would be too bright out here - sorta like the globe lights in front of all the houses.
Hmm, I'm thinking we might have clothes to wash today too ... we haven't really got too much done other than the writing and now some moving since the day started for us. REALLY - only about 3 1/2 hours ago. Just gotta not get messed up with our getting dressed AND keeping the $1 a day. Don't want to stop that project now. Officially, we are since March 14th - so 17 days, plus 30 days, plus 1 day, plus 30 due to weight loss ... that adds up to 78 dollars and we used $46 so that means we've got $32 toward the next little house. That's enough to buy the building, now we're looking at paying the shipping. HMMM ... we are just a little more than that because we got a $4 discount because a couple glued pieces came off ... SOOO that means we have on May 2nd - $36 toward the next purchase WOOHOO!!! No we're not going to say much about weight ... with having all the good stuff last week we are not doing so good there. Yesterday we weighed a pound more than we were with the 10 pound loss. Time to get back to that all. Speaking of ... we have to look too at the lawn mowing? Rich though wasn't sure where we were at with gas and oil and he said he'd look at that. Maybe we should then put that on hold, but we are aware that we are going to have to practice walking even with the walker. I know we toss this here and about, but on those days without Dr. Marvin AND mowing, there is really no excuse. Do you hear that girl?
Ok, maybe something easier ... time to get to that shower :)
Posted by Ann Marie at 10:33 AM
Tuesday, April 30, 2013 @ 4:10 pm
Hi hi ... this is me. It's an unusual time for me to be writing, but we have been hanging with Rich today. We left the house at about 11 am, theb ge drove us to Dr. Marvin's and then we drove about an hour and a half northeast by Dekalb and now we are parked in the lot FACING Rich's ball game. It's a softmore game and I think it is girls. He's already met up with a couple other umps and they've walked over the long field toward where they are going to be playing. He said it was about 86 degrees out which is a change from about 60 a day or two ago and there is a nice breeze. I have my hair in a ponytail and all the windows in the car are open cooling it off, but Rich was pretty sure that I didn't need the car/gas/air conditioner combo. I sorta see his point and am not uncomfortable, but I have to get used to the whispy hair going across my face between it and the screen. We're also still getting used to the black and green screen of the app writing program we are using for the new chromebook. I like it, but like everything else its a change. Rich says the game should last about 1 1/2 hours and it's starting at 4:30 pm and I think it's going to be about 45 minutes home. So we're out here for the long run. We did get a subway and a couple cookies after Dr. Marvin's and we just stopped at McDonalds for bathroom and a strawberry lemonade slurpee like thing, but it's not real icy and we expect it to melt soon in the warmth. BUT, for the most part we're all good and ready for the next period of time!
So what is next? I guess if we were getting back into regular time with writing in the blog, we'd be catching up where we last left off. I think we wrote a few paragraphs while the girls were still sleeping Sunday morning, and it is now late Tuesday afternoon. As to the girls being at our house we had just the best time with them. Jade was perfect onto herself, and she was especially helpful with Isa. There are just a lot of things she knows about her from the last few years sharing space that we just are not aware of ... Like what has to happen to give Isa a shower, or to help her really take one herself. She's so much more advanced than can possibly be imagined. I'm relly proud of both young women/girls. I know i know they are only 14 and 7, but they are so gosh darn cool.
I think you heard in the note to Linda some of the things that were happening that night. When they finally did wake up around 10:30 am on Sunday morning, we talked to Isa first and then Jade got up though she was saying she had been laying in bed. After Isa got up, Rich started making waffles, and then we ate and there were donuts too. After that Rich asked if we minded him going fishing, which we didn't and then Jade got ready and helped Isa with her shower. Jade had taken one the night before and needed no prompting.
After the showers we had one more activity in mind which was one we really wanted to try ... I wasn't sure how Jade would take it because it was another activity with fabric, but she seemed all good. We had all gravitated to the recliners after the shower (we' already taken ours), and I showed them some quilting magazines and had them skim the magazines and I just presented that we would like to have them focus on patterns and how things repeat in quilts, and then I gave them the project that I wanted them to try taking from the fabrics we had sorted the night before and then make pictures. They both seemed to understand. Jade was ready to give it a try and Isa had found a quilt picture using sandles and a oval type design for the spoke-center. Sure enough the magazine had a pattern to cut-out for the shoe and so then we talked about it and Isa seemed to know what she called using a "tracer." That was pretty cool. She and I traded back and forth the tracing/cutting project, but she did probably a little more work than we did. In the meantime Jade cut out the name Cody as one of her favorite rock artists, and then she didn't like the way that looked and continued over again to cut-out the word love, and then she added the infinity symbal which was sorta like a sideways number 8. Then after than she cut small triangles and cirled the other, and then she circled that with squares. Everything got glued down to the packing paper. I thought it was a nice calming exercise ... not real wild, but nice in a peaceful manner.
About the time we were about 15-20 minutes from finishing, Nikki came with the other two girls Jasmine and Ame. I felt bad because almost immediately Jasmine and Jade got into a little scuffle about who was riding back in the front seat. There was a little of the crazy argumentative stuff which I didn't like and handn't heard the whole weekend. The other thing that was hard was while the girls assessed what was happening at our place without them, Jasmine asked if I sewed clothes. I said no. Then she asked if I wanted to. I said no. I told her I didn't know how nor did I want to know how. She said she knew and would teach me, but again we said no. We had absolutely no interest in a project of that magnitude and we'd worked with her a couple of times before and know she has problems in being patient with projects. Plus it didn't include us giving Ame as much time as Jasmine. I took it to be a power play on Jasmine's part or as an aggressive move to control our setting. None of which I liked, so we are precautioned as to what might be coming up next. It seems though because of some changes in schedule, it might be like a month before getting the next two girls. We had forgotten about Mother's Day, and then there were some vacation complications. We'll get them in, but were kind of wondering if we shouldn't take Jasmine on her own. She's a lot to handle and demands a lot of attention and I'm not sure of the fairness then to Ame.
While they were there Jasmine brought up comng out for mother's day and she brought up that it was also her birthday. In the meantime we had to acknowledge out loud that we'd done nothing for Isa and Ame's birthdays in January and February. That will have to be addressed in a special way between me and the two girls. I think I would really love the time to spend too with Jasmine and just see what we can do with defining boundaries on a very conscientious level. I think I can really do it, but it is going to take effort and our undivided attention. I would like her to get in the final run of the overight that there are two - three considering Rich schedules and that she's a part, but not the center. Just two people in the same time. The more I think of it the more excited I am. I would like to have a good relationship, but we need to take the pressure off of the competitive feelings for attention.
Ok, moving on ... one more thing though too? I would really like to spend more ttime with Ame where she isn't competing with dominant people for attention. II've known her the longest, but am disappointed in all that I don't know. I wwould really like to get some time with her. It really be like a vacation for hher. Ya know?
After Nikki got out to the house on Sunday, we all laughed our way through things. After they allowed me to take a few pictures with the projects, they slipped out the door and on their way. I looked at the pictures for about a half an hour without moving just getting over the shock of them not being there aanymore. I really missed them, though we were very tired. I decided to sit/lay in the recliners for a bit and we slept for about an hour. I think the nnext part was that we talked to Linda for a bit online. I don't remember much eelse. I'm pretty sure Rich got home ... maybe closer to 5 than 3 pm, but that was ok. I think we were watching CNN. I think we went through a crabby space tthat night ... as I can remember now, he wanted to take down the girls pictures where we had taped them to the wall and that while making sense was not something we could psychologically handle at the time. And then, he wasn't hhelpful when it came to sharing tasks of closing up the house. We were very tired and not really able to process things properly. Not sure what happened with medicine, but we're pretty sure we were off that too.
I think in the end that we finally allowed him to touch/message us, but it was iffy. He did resume effort the next night - last night when he got home and I'm pretty sure it's going to be our time next time. He had had time at a game Monday night and then he went out with Doug for a couple of hours. He was pretty humble when he called asking if it be ok to be out with Doug and have a Margarita. We worried more about him having a drink and driving, but as to him being out ... we were ok with that.
Yesterday I think we got up late like we did this morning, and we had problem getting started with the day. We get to the point of grabbing coffee and sitting in the recliner, but getting to the opening things up, picking up, shower, getting dressed, etc. - we've been pretty sluggish. It dawned on me that Linda had adjusted to our new time schedule of being ready for a conversation at 8:30 am because we WERE doing that, but all of a sudden it was getting to be 8:30 am and I hadn't even started. Maybe part of that too is in taking medication. I've been sluggish on doing it by 7 am, and from there it just gets worse. We have to be conscious of all this enough to change. Hmm?
Yesterday things finally got done, and we determined after waiting a while for Linda, that we just had to bite the bullet and get some sewing in. We wanted to finish the 2nd church quilt, so we could move on today to cleaning off the table and getting space ready for cutting the old/new stuff for the next 5 quilts. I'm not sure if we spelled all that out yet, but primarily we had ordered $40 - 40 - $1 Fat Quarter pieces all in tones of yellow. We felt this would complement as an off color from the fat quarters CS had given me quite a while ago. It hopefully will be in by the time we get home today. I'm hoping that it is just sitting on the front stoop. That's the kinda thing that has been happening so far. :)
Again, I feel like we've probably said this before, but each of the fat quarters should be cut in six pieces and multiple that by 80 FQ, we should have enough for 5 quilts 60" x 80" or 96 pieces at 11" x 6". That's the sum and substance of the project. We have gotten up to figuring out that if we cut it over the next few days, then we could bring the sewing machine and project up to WI on Saturday and now the plan is that Linda is opening her place up for quilters (from our small group) on Sunday when Tony is out of town doing his coin shows. We feel particularily blessed to be getting to spend the extra time with Linda. So far Emily has said no because she needs to take care of Ainsley, but CS has said yes, and we're waiting to here from the twins. I know that Linda doesn't have a lot of room, but the group has always made do with what we have. I figure I should be able to get a quilt to a quilt and a half done in a day WITH talking. Hehehe
It's not a race, but we are looking forward to nice and steady quilting. Lately we have been just cutting and I've missed the other. This should be a great weekend to really get some work done. CS voluteered through FB to help, and she suggested that everyone take a quilt, but we didn't think that was the right thing to do. We really felt it was our project, I hadn't been asking for help, and it was something that I was personally doing for the church group we are just meeting. I didn't want to blow them away and set up expectencies, I just wanted to sew what I could and think toward the project as a whole and my experiencing with it. Our thoughts were that if CS wanted to donate fabric, we would take that, but felt that she might want to rejoin her church if that was her interest because they also do quilts. I also didn't think it the right decision to voluteer our best friends to do what was in all actuality MY work. I'm really positive they have other things to do. The group has talked about extra sewing for charity, but this wasn't the way to do it. There was a little more frustration in that although CS and our best interests lie together with the sewing, I have never liked that she should expect to do whatever we were doing. It's just a little extra frustration left over from being kids together.
CS also too extra interest in "setting me straight" about her morphine medication, but we hadn't asked for all that ... She seemed to disregard the rest of the ten pages for the one sentence she obviously took defensively. We talked to Dr. Marvin about it today and why she might do that. In one way it might be unfair to mention her or anyone in our personal blog, but the feeling is that we should have control over our thoughts through our personal medium and if anyone else had thoughts ... they could write in their own space. I don't mean to be dissing anyone, but there are things in life that give me space to be worrying or trying to figure out out loud. I don't want to be censored in my own space.
Ok, need to back away from that a bit. We've just taken stock of our space here at the edge of the high school park where we see in the distance Rich over the home plate. He's about the size of an ant, but we can see his blue shirt against the green grass. It gives us comfort to be this close to him while still in our own space. If nothing else we love to write!
Ok, though we took a break ... we tried to sign online with no luck. we did it at UIC, but couldn't here ... it wasn't picking up Rich's signal. Not sure what's happening there. Then we got into the popcorn and then had some water and found Rich had a couple small plastic basketball cups with bubble gum and stickers in them. It must be from one of his jobs. So of course we promptly put stickers all across the front of the glove compartment ... I mean it just makes sense doesn't it? We're pretty sure Rich is going to make us take them down, but for the time being ... they are really pretty! They have a metalic background which is probably a cheap tin foil type thing, but you gotta go with whatever the day puts in front of you! Wallah!
The other team playing - the older girls have just left the field. I think Rich has sophomores. He is doing this game with a partner and between the four umps they seem to know each other and had a good time talking and comparing stories before they did their work. It's 6 pm now so we don't expect the game to go on much more. Rich said about 1 1/2 hours.
I think after this we're going home to get something to eat. It's actually been a very nice day, but it really made a nice difference that there was a breeze. We talked to Rich and then talked about it to Dr. Marvin, but Rich said that tomorrow he's going to need the kitchen table for a job. We of course had also planned to use the table. We had wanted to bring our cutting to the front of the house where there was more light and activity. So in the end we compromised actually Rich emphasized umm, work? or play? Of course his work won out, but we got a good booby-prize in that we've asked him to bring out the drafting table from his "office" to the breezeway. We can keep in touch with Rich there and it will be a pleasant space to spend the day. We're quite excited by the idea. I know that it is Rich's office desk, but he did seem to move his work elsewhere AND the two of us can be accomidating. Good Good
I'm not sure who is taking the field next. I guess it is the black team. I didn't pay attention to which was the home and visiting team so I'm hard pressed to guess which inning. Maybe I could have paid attention to this, but it wasn't something we were focused on. I think we're going to be stiff when we finally crawl out of the car. I'm glad to be at the game with Rich ... even though sitting distance. I would not have easily made it over the course of the field to get to the softball part.
So what else should we talk about before we end. Not much from Dr. Marvin's part. We did a lot of summary and went over a few problematic things. One of the things we're going through is feeling more distance between us and Dr. Marvin - he suggested because of the physical separation of us moving furt. It's not insurmountable, but it's not really pleasant eitehr. We haven't gotten our feet under us yet and it hasn't been made easier because of all the breaks and interuptions of our sessions. I think we repeated earlier, it is going to be a whole month now where the sessions will be on scheudle. Maybe this will allow us some feeling of continuity. It's just one of those things that happen.
One of the things we've been thinking about today and had tried to sign online for was to hear how Joe is doing. He had surgery this morning for a torn miniscus in his knee. Cari had wrote on FB after he got out of surgery and it had gone well and he was still sleepy, but then Joe wrote himself to say that it was over and he was consciuos again and ready for the long recovery. We're pretty sure the tear was something that happened with his Karate and I'm really hoping that it doesn't jeapardize what he can do athletically.
We also talked to Dr. Marvin about Joe coming a week from Thursday. Dr. Marvin was fine with it of course. Basically, Joe was asking questions about him being a multiple too because of some differences that seemed stark in his personality. Dr. Marvin reminded us that he couldn't diagnose Joe, because he was our therapist, but he seemed to understand the basics of what we were asking as to have an outloud conversation about it between the three of us. I'm really looking forward and we checked out our resources so Joe could get to the disability access. We will have to come around the back way and then drive ourselves to the parking lot and walk in the regular long way. Won't put Joe through that just a week plus after surgery. I'm hoping the time goes quickly for him. He's got time off from his regular school loan job and will be just doing the dojo - with people to do his classes for him. He's such a good kid, and Dr. Marvin and I talked in general how good the kids have turned out. Just couldn't be more proud of them.
I think it's an important part of the game, because I hear people doing an extra amount of yelling and encouraging. A few times I've thought of being a high school athlete and in particular for softball. It was such a long and capable while ago. We don't think for long beause it is always sad on this other end to see what happens to us. We told Dr. Marvin about gaining a pound from last week. It seemed invevitable because of all the goofy stuff we were eating while the girls were here, but then too today we had a candy bar and two cookies. This is not something that happens to the REAL dedicated weight loss person.
We're going to hope to get us out doing the lawn mowing once more this week. Rich said that we could do half of it and he'd do the remaining, but the goal of course is always to finish. I'm not sure though if we'll focus on that tomorrow or the more preferabe cutting. Maybe there would be time for both, but the lawn absorbs a lot. Hmm, I think the game is over, I can see Rich limping back with the other ump. He's almost here so we'll have to go in just a second.
Anything eelse? Maybe not ... sure am in love with our love bunny. He seems to be in sync with the other guys ... I like that he has friends.
Posted by Ann Marie at 10:32 AM
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Good morning ... this is us. It'a about 7:15 am ... appears that I'm twelve hours late! Everyone is still sleeping. I'm not sure when we went to bed. I'm guessing around 9-10 pm, but it seemed later ... just not sure. We were so busy ... We did like a lot of drawing on the packing paper - well at least enough to fill up about 4 sheets. Both the two girls and me did that. And then, Rich came home and we all went outside ... Isa had brought her bike she'd just learned to ride without training wheels. We watched from our walker and Jade swept for a while. Then we were on the sunroom. Somehow ice cream got eaten and when jade went inside to change clothes she found this hideous uncle fester type head on a plate in her suitcase. We're thinking ... what kind of son did we raise? *sigh* So we meaning Isa and Jade put it under Rich's pillows. He was a little surprised about that. Hehehe ... silly girls! Somewhere in there we watched some Disney shows, ate frozen pizza (heated of course), and then Rich and the girls played war. Rich and Isa played a LONG time. Then we introduced the girls to the chore of sorting fabric. We went through about 16 bundles and sorted by color, then for a couple tall bundles and a couple short bundles for Isa ... they sorted light to dark. They had a good time with it but got tired after a while because of all the concentrating they were doing. It was still my favorite. And then ... I think popcorn happened before Jade and us made cookies - "sausage tube" of chocolate chip cookies. OHHH ... in between all that Jade took a shower and then spent a longgg time fixing her hair .. first brusthing it, then drying it, then straightening it. I think after the cookies she and Isa decided (JADE) to go in the room and watch some TV. But Isa came out and we sat for a nice while first playing fruit Ninja on my phone, and then that's when we watched the last part of Monsters Inc. I just KNOW you've seen that show! Too many grandchildren not to ... I loved it! And THEN we went to bed. I'm not sure how long Isa and Jade stayed up before falling asleep, but if they didn't turn off the TV it played itself out. Now it's about 7:30 am and EVERYONE but us and the kitties are sleeping. *sigh* what's up with that. Even RICH! He SAID he was going fishing, but after mowing the lawn and sweeping up some of the front sidewalk, he decided he was too tired to get up and fish ... his hip was really bothering him.
So that gets us up to now. We read the part about you were having trouble with Jean's quilt. I can't believe you don't have the good thread ... is it because of the flannel? I'm giving you a whole lot of respect points for all the cutting you are doing with the Blues quillt. Just hadn't appreciated enough the amount of work that quilt will need before it's done. But, I know you are the girl for it. Just it all takes time.
I know that one task we're going to have is somehow cleaning up in the living room, kitchen and dining room. Pswhoo! especially the kitchen table. How on Earth did it get that bad?? We have remnants from the paper coloring and the sorting fabric up because we weren't sure if either of those were done for sure, and after each we seemed to be tired. I really appreciated the quieter time just watching the monster show where Isa layed on a pillow on my lap. The kids are just so loveable! I can't believe i've missed all those years til now in having them sleep over. It really makes a difference though having a proper place lilke with the guest room and extra bathroom. Just some really nice things happening in our Gramma thoughts this morning. I don't know how normal it is for the girls to sleep in til how long? I'm a little worried about Isa wetting the bed, but have to get over that. I knew it was a problem a year or two ago ... not sure about now. We were pretty much like if you want it you can have it. Does that count toward Gramma spoiling?
I think I'm going to use this part of the note to you in the blog if you don't mind ... hadn't realized how much detail we were able to remember with you. Don't think I could do it any better.
Posted by Ann Marie at 9:40 AM
Saturday, April 27, 2013 A 6:33 am
Good morning. This is me .. we're just trying out a new writer for our blog, so by the time that this is posted ... it won't look anything different than our normal blog, but at the time of writing we are actually writing to "Writer" and it is a black screen with florescent green script. It's kind of cool for a change. I'm not so sure though the part that we can't change fontsize. That could be a deal breaker.
It is just morning and we're sitting in front of the fire. Rich is to the right of me and he's been sleeping in his rocker. He had switched from the bed to the chair about 4 am, and then we joined him at 4:30 am. The only difference was that he fell back to sleep and we stayed up. We drifted for awhile, and then finally got up to make coffee. We thought about sitting in the sunroom, but after opening the door we felt it was a little too cool yet. So, we found our Chromebook and brought it back to our chair.
Ahh, Rich is up now. His alarm went off about a half hour ago, but he soaked the clock. I think he's actually going to start his day because I think he has to be ready to leave here by 8:30 am, or possibly sooner. He's got a game this morning. It is about an hour NE of here. No, I wouldn't like his schedule. It's too hard!
Today is a big day because two of the Granddaughters Jade and Isa are going to come and do an overnight. Maury and Nikki are dropping them off and Ame and Jasmine will be in the car, but they are just doing the drop-off part. Maury said they will be here between noon and two pm, and that they'll stay for only about a half an hour. Rich went to the store today and we peeked in the fridge to see what he had gotten. He has a good memory because he got cookie dough ice cream AND cookie dough to make cookies! VERY excited about that! He will be home plenty of time before dinner, but the plan is to put in frozen pizza's. I saw there were four of them in the freezer. I'm thinking he would have gotten a cheese one for the girls. He's smart like that.
I'm a little worried because this is something we haven't done before - having an overnight, but it should be ok. We've got Rich for a back-up, AND the girls are tough! We're thinking that pretty much we'll take care of them while they are here, but Rich will do any of the hard stuff. Whoops, Missy had been meowing and we didn't know why. After Rich got up, it turned out that Missy had gone out in the sunroom and I'd shut her out. Oh dear ... this is not a really good show of Ann being responsible. What is up with that? Am I going to be ok? Shoot, shoot!
Hmm, somehow it got to be about an hour later because it is now 7:36 am. Rich is just getting out of the shower and we've picked things up and made the bed and such. No dirty clothes to wash today. We are going to want to iron the pillow cases for Jade and Isa ... maybe they will bring their own. I think that's pretty normal sleepover behavior. We can always pull extra pillows from the couch ... there are plenty of pillow cases. That's pretty much the kind of thinking we have done ... beside the part where we've chosen a few songs like Do-Re-Mi and continue to sing them badly. BUT, it makes us happy so that's all there is to that.
We did take our medicine, but we're thinking Rich is thinking we could have taken it earlier. We were playing with his hand and reminding him where all the knuckles, and finger nails, and forearms were. Ok, yes we might be in a little bit of a silly mood. BUT, I'm seeing or Granddaughters today! WOOHOO!!!!! So excited.
I'm not sure what else has gone on between now and the last time we wrote. We've been sort of filling in the hours with things happening other than writing. For a while we were ironing, and then for a week or two ago, we joined a couple of quilting groups, one the Sandwich Quilting Guild, and the second the church lady's of St. John's Lutheran Church quilting drive for making quilts for the Lutheran World Relief. The latter is where we've been spending the majority of our time and attention.
Ahh Rich is back out of the shower and dressed. He's having his breakfast ... It's almost 8 am now and he has to leave for his game in about 20 minutes. He should be home about 1 pm. I think I told you the kids are coming between noon and two pm. We put on some love songs, but thinking that Rich is going to turn something more substantial on ... whoops, yep, there we go. He's listening to CNN. That's what we listened to last night while he was gone. He had another game, and then he stopped for groceries and then he went over to his mother's for a few moments. Hmm, didn't stay on CNN long. I had forgotten about him watching his fishy shows. YAY FISHYMAN! He might go tomorrow morning AND someone just discovered donuts in the cupboard when he reached for his cereal bowl ... WOW! How did THAT hide there without me knowing!?? I think Rich has to go back though because he forgot about the toaster waffles we'd asked for. If he wanted to go fishing AND NOT make waffles that was going to be the trade off. I think he's good to go.
We're going to take a shower in a few moments, but there is not much else to do before the kids get here, but I would like to do the floors. I vacuumed yesterday, but the kitties have left more fur on my bedroom carpet and we're in need of doing the sunroom. We'd forgotten about that yesterday but it seems to pick up dirt from coming in from the garage. I don't think we have enough energy to do the breezeway, but that is coming soon. I want to wait until Rich pulls the rug back between the garage and the breezeway so I can vacuum that too.
One of the things that happened since the last time we wrote was that we had a pretty good size flood. It was really major in that Rich's Mom and Bud stayed over for four days and three nights. That had some good and bad. We found that EVERY day she was here, Rich and Bud would disappear and I would be left with his mother. I liked it mostly because its fun to have guest. BUT, she needed a lot of attention and help. We had problems throughout with her wanting to smoke inside our house instead of the sunroom and she made it clear that unless we changed our minds that she would rather go home. It didn't make me feel happy as a hostess, but I'm glad Rich stayed with his resolve. We told her it was up to Rich because she was Rich's mother and not mine.
I was a little more able to be manipulated. She finally got me to pour a full drink though we found out in-between she was serving herself. The last night before she left, she got overly drunk and yelled and screamed until 2-3 am. I had taken my medicine and gone to bed, but Rich and Bud were up taking turns watching her. She was really a mess. She would yell things over and over like people were hurting her when they weren't and how we'd locked her into our house and how she wanted to go home. Dr. Marvin and I talked about alcoholics the next time we were in. He talked about certain parts of the brain shutting off like the part that can reason between feeling and thinking and that some parts of her memory were turned off so she might not even know that she was repeating herself.
I talked to her a little about the drinking the next morning. Rich and Bud had both left at 4:30 am. Rich was going fishing and Bud went back to their place to continue taking care of their flooded property. She remembers more than sometimes she lays out. We waited until she triggered a comment that was relevant to her taking responsibility for what she'd done. She wanted to blame it on Bud, but we were there at 6 pm the night before when she turned from ok, to overly drunk. We could tell her about her slurring and that she kept going until she was in her angry mood. No one caused her to be that way, it was a result of the alcohol. She is a mean drunk and was hurtful through her words to especially Rich and Bud.
Hmm, Rich just left. He was into his own space and were in ours, but we never forget to remind him to have fun, drive safe, and know that we love him. He's my super bunny friend!
Remember, I'm supposed to turn off the fireplace, and clean the bathrooms AND floors. Oh, and take a shower. We're not ready for that yet. It's been so long since we've written and we're so comfortable in the recliner in front of the fire typing our heart away!
Anyway to finish with Rich's mother ... We left off on a good note, but certainly more conscious. We made sure to tell her that we felt guilty because we had poured her the last drink. She stated as the guys had guessed that she poured a drink in-between things, but I'm hoping the bad memory of her being overly drunk will be strong enough for me to say no matter how disgusted she gets with me, we're not pouring another drink. PLEASE help us stay resolute about this. It was pretty terrible and she was saying things like wishing Rich hadn't been born and how he owed his life to her and that she was the elder and was the one people were supposed to listen too. Just that she was drunk and makes absolutely no sense. She can say that other people like her ex were drunks, but she still doesn't believe she is. Maybe she does internally, but if she acknowledges it out loud, maybe she would have to do something about it, and She REALLY feels that at her age, she doesn't have to change no matter who she hurts in the process. It's hard to respect those kinds of decisions.
Hopefully, we don't have to go through much of that again. I think for the most part I was off her radar as far as the vileness of her words, but it wouldn't take much to be included on the list. I did feel protected by Rich and Bud, in that they let me go to sleep and in that manner took responsibility for her when she didn't.
Ok, now back to some things that are happier. One of the things that also happened is that we earned ourselves the first little house. We were really happy about that and we're glad when it came in. We left it for the present on the fireplace mantel. We need to get some super glue gel as recommended by the company to re-glue a few little pieces. For our trouble they gave us 15% off. We had at the time actually been $20 over what we'd been looking for. I wrote down the date, but we had lost 10 pounds so that was $30 and we included $16 for the total of days we'd been a good domestic Goddess. The house was $30, but the delivery was $15. I'm not sure what we're up to now. I know that we haven't lost more weight, but we were ahead of the game as to days doing well. I'm not sure which piece we'll pick next. But, one for sure! We still need a board for the top of the cabinet because there is no official top to the kitchen cabinets where the pieces are going to go. And we need to hook up the extension cords so we can light it up. It is a little smaller than I thought it would be, but that's ok too because the pieces will be subtle instead of overdominating in the space. All is good!
Another thing that had happened recently was the deal with the quilting guild and the church quilters ... I had started to say a little about this before, but we would like to say for the record how excited we were about these turns of events. The quilting guild was more formal and included about 3-4 times the number of people as the church group. People at the door were friendly enough and so were the people we sat with. They announced that we'd joined and we listened to a guest speaker. She was fine in that she'd brought with quite a few quilts laced back through history and she talked about basically woman's rights and expression that the quilts represented. It was fine, but it had been a while since we needed to sit through a meeting and the chairs were uncomfortable toward the end. It was formal too in that she was really the only one that was talking ... and that can be a little monotonous. There of course is always one lady in the front who tries to dominate the time and attention of the speaker, but the speaker dealt pretty good with it. Not overly confident, but strong enough not to go under.
The guild also had a little business meeting and it had a show and tell. They were in the process of electing new officers and seemed to have quite a few women involved in committees. We obviously didn't volunteer because we were too new. I didn't like the part that they don't meet in June and July. I think in part because of there being so many farm people in the group and it is their hard season. I also wasn't thrilled that in May they are having an internal garage sale in that people bring stuff to sell and they buy and then the money goes toward the church they are meeting at ... At least the smaller items. I think they said anything over $200 goes back to the group for their projects. I was a little startled with the beauty of all the quilts during their show and tell. I think 15 people had stuff, and the majority of these had more than one and one person up to 5-6 quilts that they'd been working on. Man-o-man. We thought very much that we were one of the least experienced in the group. I don't recall now the quilts, just the memory of thinking that they were really done well.
I think it is the right group for me to join. I believe in supporting locally, and now that I live in Sandwich, I want to be part of the Sandwich guild. I'm really glad it is a big enough town to support a group. I think they cover other areas too. People were interested in where we lived and this might have been part of a pecking process, but we proudly stated that we were in Jon's Estates and that it was a mobile home park. Some knew of it others didn't, but I was't able to connect people with positive or negative responses. Pretty much it sounded like, "Oh, that's nice." I figure to rule out anyone that wants to judge me as not as good as them because our house is less. In the meantime, I hope to pick-up friends with those who can get past it. I let it be known that I was really interested in meeting people and sewing maybe during the daytime/weekly with others. Most of the women there with the exception of 2-3 were all older than me ... many in their 60's and 70's. For a reference, we're only 53. They talked to each other as they'd been around for a long time and I got a feeling they were more interested in their present friends than reaching out to someone new. I think one establishes themselves over time and the quality of quilts they bring in. But for this group, we'll always be a newcomer. It has to do with not being out in this neighborhood our entire life. It's ok, we aren't so that is actually a good thing. I am guessing it prevents inbreeding. I don't mean to be mean with this, but sometimes the world is bigger than it might seem on a day to day level.
One of the things individuals in the group helped with was that they'd known about a couple quilting groups that met during the day. As it turned out they were both named St. John, but one was Lutheran and the other Baptist-Catholic. AND, they were both in the next town over west of Sandwich - called, Somotauk. Or something close to that. We chose the location of the Lutheran church because we were Lutheran at one point. We called the church and they turned out to be just 4-5 miles away which is really reasonable. The lady on the phone said that they only meet two days a month, and that was the day I called and the next day. Oh my gosh what good fortune! It didn't give me time to overthink. The sessions were 9-3 the third Tuesday/Wednesday and 7-9 pm on Tuesday night (for the workers that worked). It was 10:30 am when we called, and we were there by 11 am. We were really excited though we didn't really know too much to expect. The part that was clearest to us though was that this group of church women sewed for Lutheran World Relief, and that is the same group my Grandmother sewed 40-50 years ago. It seemed to me that it was really meant to be.
The group was all very welcoming and eager to exchange names and in some effort addresses. That part was again like the night before, but I didn't feel as rebuffed for where I lived. It probably was more my being defensive than what I was hearing, but there is some difference in living in a mobile home rather than a regular house. There's a temporaryness to it. I think though there are also older people that live in the mobile homes as easier to take care of in retirement and as it turned out one of the people at the church group also lived in a mobile home though at the larger park of 600 where ours is only 35 homes. I was impressed that so many people wanted to talk and that they were inviting us into the quilting group and church and they made it seem that my help might be very valuable to them. They also were very good in including us in their discussions in regard to things they were talking about that I might not be otherwise knowledgeable of. That was a really nice feature of the group.
The actual sewing seems to be very methodological. The group seems to be older maybe 10-15 years - not sure about this part, but I think the last minister's wife saw the start of the group, and sometime within there they build on the addition to their church that included the quilting room. It was brought through converstion about the side room that was VERY big - bigger than any kind of normal closet, but closet like in that it held all the "stuff" of the quilting room. They said that it was built this way exactly to their needs which really shows a givingness of the church. They are very invested in this project and one stated that the church was particularly orientated to service which couldn't have been a nicer thing to let me know. I feel much more comfortable about service, which might have stronger roots as my being a former Girl Scout than anything, but for sure we're REALLY into our quilting roots.
Someone explained the basic parts, but we weren't catching really well what everyone was doing. In general there were people who did ripping of peoples' fabrics donated through curtains and such and then the fabric went to someone ironing, and then to the cutters, and then to the sorters who made kits of the blocks the cutters were making. They primarily made quilts by the four sizes of 12 - 22" x 22", 24 - 22" x 11 1/2", 48 - 11" x 11", and 96 - "11" x 6". This seemed pretty easy to learn and was our first job. The sorting meant more of fabric types than prints that necessarily went with one another. Like in response to my question, it was really no big deal to match a Christmas print with a Halloween print. Other than sorting, on the first day we also worked on ironing, because the regular guy wasn't there. BUT, we were told by one of the cutters that we were getting to far ahead and that we should go back to sorting. There wasn't a real lot of work there, but the time passed quickly and we had something to do at all times. We went ahead and marked other piles that didn't equal up to the specified numbers. Some of the fabric areas were regular, light, heavy, flannel, corduroy, etc. I'm not sure how well I did at this job. Both the kits I brought home were overcounted. *sigh* I guess there is a learning curve.
Some of the other stations were - four sewing machines that did bindings and baby quilts, and then there was a team putting the backings and middles on and finding materials from the donations that had come in, and then there was another team that was working on connecting the three layers by tying the quilts. Where the quilts were coming from was from quilters who had been taking the quilt kits we were putting together. When the quilt kits were done, they were brought out to the church hallway in a basket/table. That was a pretty good system I thought. After the pieces were put together by quilters, then they would bring them back and leave them on the table for the group the following month - 3rd Tues/Wed.
I was really pleased the first day when someone offered to share their lunch with me and people had brought in desserts. We were introduced to the minister - who is temporary when he came in to share lunch time. The second day was a little harder, because I had gone out on a limb and had to deal with the personality conflicts that came with that. I had thought that they said there wouldn't be cutters the following day, so I brought in my mat and cutting tools and told them I would like to cut because there wasn't any pieces to be sorted and I thought I'd be more valuable cutting than ripping out old seams which was more for people who didn't know anything about quilting, but would like to help.
Most the people there - there were like 10-12 people at almost all times, were ok, but later into the time period the cutter named Don came in as well as the other guy that was cutting. Don was the cutter in charge, and the other guy just did one size pieces. Don apparently had been cutting for 11-12 years, and I guess the process didn't move any faster of slower than that. He had a couple big tables and used fixtures. That came in contention later when he figured out we were cutting too. We were using our rulers and going by measurements instead of pre-cut panels. Don didn't understand this and was very frustrated with me and eventually left saying do whatever you want to ... He talked to others and calmed down, but then came over a few more times to get upset. One was because I was folding the 22" x 22" panels in quarters because I didn't have room on my table. He didn't see how anyone coming after me would understand this ... he thought they'd take the pieces to be the 11" x 11's". Each time he just gave up on me and left frustrated. He was also frustrated, because we had more piles on the table and he didn't think we could go through the sorting of stuff he and the other guy had done because there wasn't enough time. I knew we had a couple hours and the process wasn't really difficult. I think we impressed him a little toward the end in that we made quilt kits, but he was thinking they'd made more before. I had made kits of everything that had enough material, so it really wasn't a sorting problem, but he was used to someone who had done this job before, but had been sick and missing for quite some time. At the end, he welcomed me back and said that everyone helped to contribute to the whole. But, it was rough going in the middle. I promised ourselves that we wouldn't over-consider his grouchiness in making a decision not to go back. He was tough though. We had also felt uncomfortable with him because when he got frustrated he would turn back to listening to Rush Limbaugh who he laughed and talked to himself about. Hmm, ultra-conservative ... who would have guessed? I will appreciate though that he's put in so much time and I understand that he comes in everyone once in a while in-between things so it doesn't get backed up. I wanted him to understand I was here to help him. Hope that turned out to be a good decision, because I wouldn't want to fall into that kind of pressure every time without good reason.
I liked doing the work though again more pressure the second day over the first. I had the feeling people knew about the tension between me and Don, but they were letting us work through it. Every once in a while someone would go over to talk to Don privately or me, but they didn't stay long or get over-involved - just enough to be a hearing aid to the other. That in itself was respectful.
The next part involved the thoughts and after-thoughts on going to a regular church service. I'd been asked by the woman that seemed in charge and the minister about coming and to make sure we knew their hours. That part really left me feeling shaky. It seems the minister is a nice guy from Elgin who was supposed to retire, but he's working with this church until they find a replacement for their minister who already retired like 6-7 months previous. It seemed that everyone knew everyone and even this one lady who was 95 was welcomed in as what seemed to be a regular helper. That was impressive. I worried over the feeling of "supposed to being" at church, but Rich and Dr. Marvin took some of the pressure off ... Rich said that I should wait and talk to Dr. Marvin first. On Tuesday we just talked five minutes at the end of the session, but then on Thursday, we talked about general stuff the first 15 minutes, and then the remaining time I had asked for something harder, and he remembered for us the part of talking about church and church people - so that's what was discussed for 45 minutes.
I don't want to get into it a lot here and now, but the majority of things coming out were all the bad experiences with the church such as idiotic ministers including my brother, and the problems with Brother John (BJ) and Sr. Theresa, as well as the other really known Catholic, my ex and his family. I really had a lot of bad stories of people who were all supposed to be religious and whatever that might mean. Dr. Marvin wanted us to search for other things that were more positive to balance those thoughts. We could say honestly we believed in God and in Jesus as the ultimate teacher, but we had more trouble with the spirituality of all that - especially not really understanding all the service requirements of knowing what to do and when and for what reason. That was all a mystery to us although we'd gone to Sunday School and then Confirmation classes until we were 16 years old. At that point we were able to choose and we chose not to go. It didn't help going to a Catholic school and all that mess. Some parts were good, but we always felt insufficient because we were not as "religious" as them.
The good parts? What were we looking for? I think more than everything we're looking for fellowship, though that too is a loaded word. I would like to meet others though who I might enjoy spending time with and to share meaningful experiences. I think the church has a couple hundred people which seems fairly safe, but thinking that it's going to be a lot of work just to get past the front door. At the end of the conversation, Dr. Marvin suggested that we talk to the minister. It seemed that would be the right thing, but we hadn't gone to church the first Sunday, and tomorrow we'll be with Jade and Isa, and then the following week we'll be in WI with our own quilting group, and then the next Sunday Jasmine and Ami will be here and then the following Sunday Jon, Rich's son might be here. I guess there is nothing to say we couldn't still go, but I don't want to bring the girls into an unfamiliar (scary) place with us, and Rich will be fishing so I can't really leave them alone. If I were to talk to the minister or invite him over, there would be that confusion. I think if I were to talk to him, we'd have to mention a little of our reservations and then also ask to be given information that would explain the service better. I'm not sure if they offer classes for that type of thing, I do know there is two women's groups that meet. Just I think they are going over scriptures which is way beyond me at this point. It would also mean trying to figure out where our church records were left in Winona, MN. That was like 13-14 years ago ... how am I going to remember all that - we don't know the church's name though we I guess have an idea where they were ... the building was right next to the government housing on the main street. Thinking most likely they'd still be there.
Maybe even there though we're jumping the gun. I know as well that part of the decision includes thoughts of Rich. We're not sure if he would join with us. I believe he was Lutheran to start, but switched over to Catholic because his wife was and she was a CCD Director and he was expected to be sitting in the pews with his kids as she was working. He said that he did a lot of time communing with Nature that was in his head. I'm thinking this means bubbly streams and fishing lures. Rich is by nature a good person and I'm thinking he could attend with me, but whether he comes or not ... it is independent of my decision. I think he would go with me if we were really serious, but as well, he might be counted out because of the busyness of his weekends. They have services at 5 pm Saturday, and 8:30 am and 10:00 am Sundays. It would really be a change of pace. We're still at the place of needing to think about things.
Again, a call to the minister would probably be a good day. I think we left it with Dr. Marvin that we'd check on their office hours. Ok, we finally found their site through facebook. It states that office hours are from Tuesday through Friday 9-4. So we'll put our thoughts toward that. We've got time. Dr. Marvin thought that we might want to go in to the service to see how it might affect us. I know that is probably a good idea, but again ... almost pleased that there is some things on our agenda that don't make that likely for the first month.
Ok, we're way past that stuff. We figured that we needed to pick up a little more and that we needed to take our shower and do the floors and bathrooms. Well most of that got done ... floors might happen in-between someting else. Hehehe you know ... an activity? We were just out of the shower and we heard some knocking and it was Bud at the door. Glad the closet is in the bathroom area! That was a bit of a panic. But, we had a nice visit. They had gone out to Bud's Great Granddaughters birthday and Bud talked a lot about the work he was doing still cleaning up from the flood. It sure is a lot of work. I know that I couldn't be a help to him, but I still think it's a lot of work. He had help from his sons in the beginning, but not so much now. I was glad to listen to him though. Seemed like he had a lot to get off his chest. He was supposed to have gone to the doctor's, but there was nobody there. So maybe a confusion of dates. It was nice that since he was out he thought to stop by. He wouldn't let me put on another pot of coffee or have the donuts that are in house (grandchildren), but it was a nice 20 minute space. Then after he left we finished getting ready and now we are up to now. There was a few moments catching up with Linda in the messages left. Seems like she's doing some housecleaning too. She was with her Grandson's for a few days. There's always something to do when one gets back.
The cat is so funny ... he's sitting in a sunbeam with his face raised toward the sun with his eyes closed. Yup yup ... he's having a good morning. We're just starting to get the sun on this side of the house. It's almost noon. The cats really like it when we come out here to sit. AND there are flowers in our view too. Turns out there are daffodils that come up all by themselves by the outdoor globe light (like the one's everyone in our park has).
I can hardly wait to find out what might be of interest to a teenager and a second grader. I don't think that any of Jade's friends are coming which might be good the first time because she can figure out how we're going to be - like a test run. It seems so strange to have girls 7-14 years old and never stayed over. Maybe one night for Ame, but that's really far in-between. I hope everyone is happy with the situation. I think it's neat as kids to get away from home periodically, just to change things up. Plus, it REALLY gives me more time to get to know my Grandchildren on their own. It's the good stuff of life.
Did I tell you yet we got a lawn mower? We did pretty much of the lawn ... Rich just got in back of the trellis because it was down and he needed to pick it up and do the curvey area. The trellis is down again ... and we're telling him we need a rope and stakes, but he is like - no a girl thought of that so we're not going to do it. Why don't I think about this another month or two!?? Well maybe he didn't say that exactly, but that's our interpretation of his action. He didn't do anything with the house for over a week now ... AND, he went fishing last Sunday and is planning on going out tomorrow. BUT, that's part of the deal isn't it? I told him we were doing our part by keeping things cleaned and picked-up and we hadn't missed a day, but then he said he didn't make the same kind of agreement. I hope that he is teasing me, because the one that decides fair or not fair is not happy. LIKE our quilt isn't up.
Hmm, that makes me remember ... we measured her last week and found that it is 93" x 110" AND the wall hanging thing is 96" so we figured that was ok, but the floor to ceiling is only 109". We still have to figure out what we're going to do to the quilt to make it stand up on the pole. Shoot ... let's go back to not thinking about that again.
We were arguing to ourselves while writing to Linda as to whether we used this time before Maury and his family came out to sew or to write. Obviously, I won out. BUT, there is a strong force that wants to quilt too. We sorted out the colors yesterday. We put all the stray pieces together - there were 48 of them to work with - in order from the darker pieces to the lighter pieces. Pretty much they were like black, blue, green maroon, red, yellow, beige, and then white. So we flipped half of the pile over with the intent of things meeting in the middle. It was still going to be a checkerboard though. So the 1-1 position was the first light color, then 1-2 was the first dark color, then on the other side we had the 8-6 position being the next light color, and 8-5 being the next dark color. And then it just kept reversing, but the next row would start with an opposite light/dark to get the checkerboard affect. We labeled all the pieces so that we didn't get confused when we were sewing.
Hmm, blackbirds scared away all the pretty birds. That's no good. I hope they fly away. Hmm, seems to have happened. Will they come back? Not so far ... so so far so good!
Maybe we are a little interested to in the sewing. The more I write about it the more that we want to sew. I'm thinking that while Jade is talking that maybe we'll do a little cutting at the dining room table. Hmm, that seems like a pretty good idea.
The deal was that after we started thinking about the church quilts, we wanted not to have to wait for another batch. But, we couldn't figure out ... if we used CS stash basically, we'd run out. Plus, we didn't like that they were just dark fabrics. There wasn't enough contrast. So in the end, we found our way to E-Bay looking for cheaper fabrics. Well we wanted the cost cheaper not the fabric. What we found was someone selling Fat Quarters (FQ) for only a $1 and he seemed to be selling them in some interesting variations like he had one put together by Jinny Beyers, and another one put together by Debbie Mums, so he actually knew his fabric and quality. So then the next thing was in seeing if he had a bundle I could afford and interested me. AND< WE DID! He was selling a group of 40 fabrics that all had some variation of yellow in them. It was the bright contrast to cs fabrics I was hoping for without thinking it out too much. What eventually came to our thoughts was that we would use 40 squares from this seller and 40 squares of CS FQ and that would make FIVE ENTIRE QUILTS for $8 a quilt. THAT was a price we could afford to donate! The yellows should be here either Monday or Tuesday. The squares we are going to cut are the 11" x 6". There will be 96 of them to make a 60" x 80" quilt because the chuch likes 1/2 seams instead of the normal 1/4" seams. It should be a really great project.
This sort of then flows into what we'll be doing with our time while with the granddaughters today and tomorrow and what we'll be working on for the next week, hopefully before the sewing week next Saturday. What we're thinking is that we can cut out all the squares for the five quilts, and then we could use Saturday and maybe Sunday if anyone wants to sew with us to put together most likely more than one quilt. I'm under no pressure to get quilts done - other really than the two I took with me from the church, but now it seems that quilting could have meaning again for me. I haven't really quilted since we went on retreat last Oct/Nov. Currently, I don't have a nice quilting project ... nothing has inspired me and I haven't really been looking. I'm pretty sure we have some project that would be nice, but frankly we've been only dealing squarely with scraps.
After we put our sewing room together, we found that we could bring out the ironing board and it would form a little awkward, but still useable ironing table and for a month or so we were using the scraps in the bins in the fabric closet to keep us busy. We still need to work with colors and sorting, so now we're thinking that might be a project for me and the girls tonight too! We also stopped yesterday at the U-Haul place and got a couple 10 pound boxes of packing paper - or in Gramma langauge project paper! I think that Isa is going to bring some of her coloring stuff too so that would be perfect. We're thinking of doing a project with scrap fabric painting. I don't know if Jade will be interested, but she's got no competition, so maybe it is something to keep her hands busy while talking. AND, give us something we can do together. I like the thought of having quilting THINGS happening while they are around. I think it would be something they could fall back on later. I think more quilters come to it from relatives quilting before them, and then accept as a worthwhile project AND an expression of art. Isa? She's just ammenable to all fun type things happening around her. I decided to save the electric broom work until later too, one because the floor is not that bad, but two, it becomes another project we can have fun with. I really like the idea of interesting the girls in tasks that are familiar to the household - sort of inviting them into our space. I think though where we're most useful is that we someone new to them (though familiar) that will be safe to talk to. Just really excited!
Hmm, stopped to look up ... Both kitties are out with us now on separate pieces of furniture and they are both self-bathing. I really think they are happy in this house. We can also hear the sounds of lawnmowing. I looked up to see a riding lawnmower and think that it is the park people. There are two properties that are vacant and I think he's doing that. We also just talked to Rich. He is done with his game and was gingerly asking what we thought of him fishing tomorrow. I know that if we really needed him here he wouldn't fish, but the fact of the matter is that we've got this side thing going on ... if he can bring us frozen waffles, then I can take care of the kids eating in the morning PLUS donuts without him being here. SO, it was fine that he went fishing. YAY US! Aren't we the nice ones ... at least today?
AHA! Linda is back ... need to check out how she's doing. Hopefully she's moved past housework too to be doing the fun stuff.
Posted by Ann Marie at 9:36 AM