Editorial Comment

On the old carpet in the living room, it was VERY easy to find editorial comments when Tango was displeased about the state of the litterbox. Because the carpet was so light in color that the editorial comments showed up VERY well.

We matched the new carpet to the color of most of the spots on the old carpet. This is a good thing — doesn’t show much.

However, it is also a bad thing. Editorial comments have been made again. At least two. I know I found one under the piano. Cleaned it yesterday and it seems to be okay today. God love OxyClean. Cannot find the other, and I KNOW that it’s there. So I’m being forced to crawl around the living room, with my nose to the floor, trying to find the genesis. I have narrowed it to a general region, but haven’t found it yet.

Stupid freaking cat.

Say some prayers

I met a new neighbor on Friday afternoon, who recently moved down here from northern Virginia. They have two daughters, ages 4 and 18 months, and a friend of mine that met her decided that we HAD to meet.

The more K. and I talked, we realized we had lots in common, besides the obvious that our daughters are close to the same age. We decided to get the girls together to play, and maybe we can take walks in the neighborhood some.

Sunday afternoon, I called to see if they wanted to go for a walk with us, and they were busy painting. But K. invited us over for an early dinner on Thursday evening. I was really looking forward to it, to meeting her husband, and getting to know our new neighbors and making them feel welcomed here.

Tonight she called to let me know that shortly after our conversation yesterday, her husband doubled over in pain — stomach pain but not nausea, and he is having trouble breathing. She ended up taking him to the ER, and he’s still there, now with a fever of 102F. They think it could be a clot in his lungs, or pneumonia, or possibly gall bladder issues. He’s having an ultrasound tonight to see what else they can discern. UPDATE: it is NOT a clot, but it appears to be an inflammation of the wall of his abdomen, so now they have him on antibiotics.

She said she almost called me back last night after bringing the girls home from the ER to put them to bed at 8, because she wasn’t sure how she was going to manage going back to the hospital to be with her husband or get him to bring him home, and she obviously couldn’t leave the girls there by themselves. And she’s new in town, knows very few people, and has no family here. Turns out he was admitted to the hospital, so she didn’t have to go back. The hospital that he’s in is less than half a mile from her house, which is good.

I told her tonight that if she needed anything, even if it was in the middle of the night, to call us. And we’d be there as soon as we could. That we depended on the kindness of others when I was on bedrest, and to please please let us know if she needed something, no matter how inane. Sending me on a run for more diapers would be a perfectly acceptable errand, and I’d be happy to do it.

I. Cannot. Imagine.

Hi, Traci!

Everybody, say hi to Traci (who I mentioned in this post, but not by name because I thought it would be rude since she didn’t visit at the time), who has promised to come visit messygoat. 🙂

And Traci, you’re right. The Arizona quilt WAS that other pattern you asked me about tonight. It’s just weird to see it in other colors, I guess.

I went to the UFO workshop and got the binding sewn on the quilt I finished quilting yesterday. So now I have an in-front-of-the-TV activity for the next week or so. Yay!

Also got the rest of the Albatross strip in this morning’s post (below) quilted, and started quilting another one. And went shopping in the Fabric and Thread Crackhouse. Heh. I didn’t go shopping as much as Traci, though. Traci was naughty.


The Green Albatross

I have a quilt that I started collecting fabrics for in 1992. You know, when hunter green was all the rage. I started making blocks for a quilt for my dorm room, and they came out uneven, non-square, etc. I abandoned the project when I went back to school that August and didn’t come back to it for 10 years.

In 2002, Mom was clearing out her sewing room and found the Rubbermaid tub with all those fabrics in it. And the original design I had drawn out carefully on graph paper. And the wonky blocks. She didn’t want it cluttering her house anymore, so she foisted it on me.

At the time, I was participating in a block-of-the-month club at my favorite quilt shop, and decided to use those block designs with those old fabrics. It soon became apparent that I didn’t have enough fabrics, so I went in search of more hunter green.

In ten years, the popular dark green had gone from a blue-based green (the hunter we all knew in the early 90s) to a yellow-based green (more of a forest/piney green, and yes, there is a difference). These greens aren’t really compatible. So I had to figure out a way to integrate the colors on one quilt. I started making the blocks with white fabrics in the background, and then most blocks had both a green from the 90s and a green from 2002.

When I finished all twelve Ohio Star blocks, it became apparent that I didn’t have enough blocks for a quilt that would actually be useful — I didn’t NEED a quilt for my dorm room anymore, obviously. So I needed more blocks. And I didn’t want to make more Ohio Star blocks.

So the Albatross went dormant for another year. Then I made a Flying Log Cabin (log cabin pattern with flying geese in the corners) quilt, and decided in 2004 THAT might be good supplemental block for between the Ohio Star blocks. And I used up almost every bit of my 1992 greens making enough Flying Log Cabin blocks to make the Albatross into a king-sized quilt.

Dormant for another year.

I sewed the quilt top together into 5 strips of 5 blocks each plus the sashing strips, and was getting ready to sew the whole quilt top together. But I don’t have a sewing machine that’s large enough to quilt a king-sized quilt — it would be too difficult on my shoulders. So I contacted a local quilting-for-hire person. It would cost anywhere between $375 and $800 to have the thing quilted, depending on how much detailed quilting I wanted her to do.

Are. You. Kidding. Me??? Even the Albatross, and the almost 14 years it has now taken me to get to this point, is not worth that kind of money.

It might take me a long time to get to it, but I decided to quilt the stupid thing myself. But I was at a loss — this quilt is kind of “country” in feel, and I don’t DO country. So my geometric quilting styles wouldn’t really work. And I’m not the type to meticulously draw out a static quilting pattern 25 times and then carefully quilt on my tracings. I much prefer free-handing, and I know I do a better job when I do that anyway. But what pattern? Finally, after staring at it for a long time, I thought I knew what I wanted to do, but I wanted to practice it first. The quilt I finished yesterday was my practice session for the Albatross.

Because it’s too big to quilt in one piece, I’m quilting it in sections, and I’ll join the sections AFTER the quilting is done. This is a somewhat unorthodox way to do a quilt, but my mom did it for her bedquilt, so I know that it works.

And last night, riding high on the inspiration of finishing a quilt yesterday, I started quilting the Albatross. And it’s coming ALIVE!! I’m quilting with variegated purple thread. And it looks so good. Even for being not colors I normally work with (and with the borderline “country” feel — ugh), I’m going to have to say that I will really be proud of this monster when it’s all done.

Jerry came up and looked: “Wow, that’s the Albatross? It doesn’t look like crap anymore! And you can quote me on that.” Isn’t that just the sweetest?

Here’s one of the Ohio Star blocks… If you see orange threads, that’s the basting thread. It’ll come out.
Ohio Star

Here’s one of the Flying Log Cabin blocks…
Flying Log Cabin

And here’s the strip I did last night. This is strip #2, which is what the little pink post-it says. That way I’ll keep them in order when I sew the whole thing together.
Green Albatross Strip #2

Keep me motivated!!

(Jerry, are these picture sizes better, even if they are blurry from being shoddy quality?)