Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Bike Helmet

I finally purchased my bike helmet.  I just couldn't bring myself to wear my daughters' old helmet.  I actually had one of my girls with me when I went to the bike shop. 
I'm expecting great things with my free grandma bike and my new helmet.  I'm expecting courage, a five-pound weight loss, amazing speed, and the motivation I need to get back into marathon  running shape!  OK--I'll settle for a little stress relief.

We did look at all those bikes while we were there.  Maybe if I am a good girl, log a bunch of miles on my "training" bike, and tutor like 1,000 hours--I'll treat myself to a "real" bike next spring.

I Thought This Would Be Easy

So in my new "permanent" sewing area, I am working on a Mod Sampler quilt I've mentioned before.  I'm really having a time and a half--probably why I'm just a wanna-be quilter and not a REAL quilter.  I am half way done piecing the top of one quilt (I've cut out two--each daughter wanted one).  Cutting the quilt out took forever, and I have miscut pieces (both sizewise and numberwise).  I have missewn pieces (which explains the seam ripper near my right hand at all times).  I'm embarrassed to say I've had to resew a nine-patch . . . TWICE.  That ironing all seams open is for the birds.  I think there is something possessing this project--because the directions on the internet could not be clearer or more precise.  I chose this pattern for that reason.
I'm going to keep going with this--with a goal of giving the girls their quilts for Christmas.  Should I give something as a special Christmas gift when I'm beginning to think . . . um . . . in PG13 language while sewing it?!?

My Sewing Corner

We moved into our home approximately two years ago.  I really love having more space.  Our basement is finished, and we divided it into sections:  daddy's section (for his sports memorabilia side job/hobby), mommy's section (for my sewing--but fabric is stored upstairs in my bedroom closet), and the kids' section (for the television, wii, and all the other "stuff" we don't want all over the house).   Sounds ideal, but . . .
I don't like sewing downstairs.  There is no natural light in the mommy section.  You cannot hear a thing in the basement--which does not work with three children and numerous friends/neighbors.  You also cannot hear if anyone comes to the door.  Lastly, the family dog is not allowed downstairs (daddy's rules).  When daddy was gone for a month, I decided to move my sewing desk upstairs--just temporarily.  There's this little niche in the corner of our "office"type room.  (Note the nasty dog bone near the sewing area).

Today I've declared it a permanent move.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Simple Abundance

A long time ago, I was given a book written by Sarah Ban Breathnach entitled Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy (my copy was published in '95).  There is a section for each day of the year.  The topics are full of variety, tons of quotes, and a section called "Joyful Simplicities" for each month of the year.  This is basically a book for you to stop and be thankful for the most simple things in life. 
I rediscovered this book when deep cleaning the basement.  This book doesn't replace (and I hope the author is not egocentric enough to think that is should replace) my bible and other religious practices.  The book is just a sweet way for me to slow down and look at some specific elements in life.  For example, today's entry is on animals.  Tomorrow's in on antiquing.  I should list 101 things for which I am thankful.  Sounds simple, but I get so caught up in life that I tend to overlook those beautiful things around us.

Friday, August 6, 2010

New Tool

I received some upsetting news this week (regular "life" stuff), and I did something I don't do often.  I wanted to shop for something to make me feel better.  I purchased a big girl quilt tool--a tiny iron.  My oldest daughter informed me that it was the smallest iron she has ever seen.  Well . . . that's the point. 
I'm making two Mod Sampler quilts for my daughters (pattern and great directions at http://www.ohfransson.com/oh_fransson/2009/04/finished-mod-sampler-quilts.html ) It recommends that I press all seams open.  Never done that before, but I wanted to complete the quilts as directed. I should have bought one of these tools years ago!  I don't anticipate burning the tips of my fingers as much as trying to manipulate a regular iron in these small fabric areas.  It's the little things that get me excited.  I guess that is a sign that I lead a good life!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

You Never Forget--Really?

Have you heard the expression "It's like riding a bicycle--you never forget how to do it."  I could be proof that this is not true.  This weekend, our family (my husband, our three kids, and I) helped with a Ride for Life biking event to benefit Dayton Right to Life education.  What a great cause.  Since I don't even own a bike, volunteering seemed like the next best thing.  Unfortunately, the turn out was pretty low.  I decided to spend $5 on six raffle tickets for a new bike--AND I WON!  Thanks to Huffy for the donation to the event!
I tested it for the first time tonight.  My best estimate of my last real bike ride (not the stationary kind)--1988.  I'm a chicken, afraid of falling, afraid to go fast, AND have no natural athletic ability.  I managed to squeeze my breaks all the way down our sloping driveway, turn onto the sidewalk, then tried pedaling.  Twice ended up in the grass because of steering "issues."  Walked the bike back up the driveway to raise the seat.  Round two, I ended up in the grass twice.  I only rode a mile--most on a sidewalk because I don't have a helmet.  The average person could walk faster than I was riding--but I'm trying to diversify my workouts since I cannot get motivated to run regularly.  So you really CAN forget to ride a bike.

It Must Be Monday

Today was one of those typical Mondays that you have to laugh about--because it's only "stuff."  Our two vehicle family has blessed to be car-payment free for approximately ten years.  I was leaving to take my vehicle in for its 30K mile tune-up (even though my odometer is over 40K) at the dealership.  I was trying to locate my keys as my husband was leaving for work.  Then I head it--"wooooo.  wooo.  screech."  Repeat.  Screech was something that sounded like metal on metal.  My husband--who's very intelligent, but has no mechanical ability--came in.  "Maybe it is the battery," he mumbled, "Could you take me to work?"
I have only 1% mechanical ability--enough to know that a low battery does not make a high-pitch, metal-on-metal screech.  I am also intelligent enough not to say anything.  My husband informed me that "this is not a good time for this to happen."  Again, I am smart enough NOT to verbalize my retort--"When IS a good time for your car to die?"  Long story shorter, the 13-year-old vehicle (with over 130K miles) needed ANOTHER $1400 repair. 
Bad news--we now have a car payment for a newer car.  Good news--we are all healthy and have two running cars.  I guess it is a matter of perspective.  You have to admit--it is funny it happened on the proverbial Monday and on the day I was taking the "good" car to the dealership.