Rosebuds

As mentioned in my last post I jumped right on the September Color Blocks pattern “Gather Ye Rosebuds” as soon as Debby released it and yesterday I put the final stitches in the top!! Woohoo!

I used a white-on-white print for the background and I love it 😀 I’m not sure what I’ll do for the back or quilting yet. Debby is usually a month ahead of us and I look to her finished project for inspiration but she just finished her top last week so I’m going to wait to see how she quilts hers before I go any further.

While I’m waiting, I decided to pull out the May Color Block quilt top and get it basted. I made the back from a sheet set I got on clearance and I ‘franken-batted’ some large batting scraps. I’ve got it all draped over my ironing board waiting to be glue basted. I’ll try to remember to take some pictures as I go!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Nothing to update regarding my retirement date… I’m still focusing on June of next year. There was a restructuring announcement at my company last week but it’s in a different division so I don’t think I have any hope of being impacted – yet, LOL.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I’m starting to lose ground on my WW journey. Admittedly I have not been focusing on it for the last few months so it’s no wonder 😦 I’m still drinking a good amount of water every day but even that has slipped. I just don’t “feel like” making it a priority… grrrrrr! I’m going to be so mad at myself in the future!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I made travel plans for the beginning of October and I’m a little anxious. My niece is having a birthday party for my great-niece and I thought it would be nice to attend. They live in Maryland and I can get a direct flight from Myrtle Beach so it’s pretty easy, except I haven’t flown since the pandemic started. I know tons of people are flying every day and there haven’t been any reports of covid spread so as long as I wear my mask and distance as much as possible (outside of the plane), that’s all I can do 🙂 They flew down here in July and they were fine so I just need to focus on that!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s all for now… have a great rest of your weekend!

Squirrel!

My plan was to finish the Stars quilt I had basted last weekend but wouldn’t you know it I got snagged by a squirrel project!!

Debby Brown released the September project “Gather Ye Rosebuds” early and I just couldn’t wait!! 😮

I immediately pulled out my pink scrap bin and started cutting 2.5″ squares then spent the next few days putting the ‘flower heads’ together

So where is my Stars top? Folded up on the end of my ironing board! I’ve taken PTO all next week so my *new* plan is to start quilting it on my Pfaff and continue working on the September Color blocks on my Singer… I knew a second machine would come in handy!! LOL

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Of course I’ve been watching the US Open and there have been some very dramatic upsets over the last few days!! The young players are definitely making their mark 😉 My favorite on the ladies side, Barty, crashed out last night losing to American Shelby Rogers but my favorite on the men’s side, Djokovic, is still going strong. However, he will face American Jensen Brooksby on Monday and that could prove to be quite a battle!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

On the retirement front, I still haven’t committed to a date yet but I am getting excited about it! I’ve been talking about it quite a bit with friends and family and I’m getting used to the idea of paying the full price tag for medical benefits (I still don’t like it tho!). I think I’m leaning towards June 30, 2022. That will let me celebrate 43 years with my company on June 4…putting a nice bow on the ending!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Let’s not even talk about WW…. uuuggghhh, I’ve gained back a couple of pounds I lost over the last few months. I really need to get my head together and stop putting junk in my mouth! I know I shouldn’t even buy the crap but I fool myself into thinking ‘oh I won’t eat all of this, it will just be here for a little treat now & then’…. Hahahahahahaha!! I really should know better!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s all for now… have a great rest of your weekend and enjoy the Labor Day holiday 😀

Back to Color Blocks

Now that the big double wedding ring project is complete I can put my focus back on the Color Block QAL. Last week I finished the nine blocks needed for the August pattern, this week I made all the star blocks and just this morning I finished the center of the top.

The center row of blocks are most true to color

I went with a light gray for sashing to keep the stars as the focus. I plan to use the green dot fabric for the 6″ borders which makes this quilt 68″ square. I don’t usually care for square quilts but this time I like it 😉 I have no clue yet what I’ll use for backing :-/

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In other news, I’m still debating when I’ll actually retire. I plan to do it sometime next year but I haven’t chosen an exact date. I did have a conversation with my boss last week to let him know if any downsizing or restructuring plans arise I’d be ‘willing to take a package’ and save someone else’s position. I’m not sure it will get me anywhere but I put it out into the universe and we’ll just see what happens :-p

I recently started following a new blog Retirement Transitions. Pat’s blog focuses on the emotional side of retirement – what will I do all day, how will I feel like I’m accomplishing something, etc. She recently started a ‘Throwback Thursday’ series where she revisits many of her blog entries that helped her build a plan. I’ve found it very interesting and very helpful.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

On the WW front… eh, let’s just say I’ve not made any progress over the last several weeks!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s all for now… have a great rest of your weekend 🙂

Still waiting…

I’m still waiting for my quilting mojo to come back! It appears to have taken a summer hiatus 😦 I can’t even remember the last time I walked into my sewing room…ugh! I’m not going to beat myself up about it, I’m just going to let it be and hope it will come back soon!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I’m still doing WW, tracking my meals and trying to get out for walks every day. I haven’t gained anything but I haven’t dropped anything either – ha!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Our little old Mini Schnauzer Sammie is still going strong. She’s still on the meds for the lymphoma and the vets all say she’s doing well. The last two visits we’ve had with different doctors they both have mentioned they’re surprised how well she’s doing especially since it’s been over 1.5 years since we started the chemo meds (Nov 2019). She’s developed a corneal ulcer on her left eye that is just not healing. She’d been on eye drops for almost two months when they finally sent us to a specialist. Her visit was this past Tuesday – they numbed her eye, scraped off the top layer and inserted a protective contact lens to help with healing. They said she’d be uncomfortable for 24-48 hours and sent us home with pain meds. She’s doing much better today, we go for a follow up check on Aug 5th… I sure hope that thing is healed up by then!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

No decisions yet on when I will retire but I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately! I was mulling over a date of Jan 1 but I’m not sure I want to retire in the middle of winter. Even though I live in Myrtle Beach and winters are not harsh by any means, it’s still cold and there aren’t many outdoor activities I would enjoy. My next thought is Mar 1, winter will be over and Spring will be in the air…I think that would be an amazing time to ‘start over’. I know this will sound awful but I’m still holding out hope my company will magically down-size me and offer me an exit package that would include medical benefits…but I don’t see that happening anytime soon :-/

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s all for now… I’m enjoying watching the Olympic events in Tokyo, especially tennis!

Not much progress

Unfortunately the procrastination bug has bit me and I haven’t made much progress on quilting the Double Wedding Ring quilt. I finished 4 more circles last week when I had ample time to finish the whole thing :-/ I think I’m dragging my feet because I’ve started to worry about how difficult it’s going to be to put the binding on!! LOL, how silly is that!?! She still sits on my dining room table so it’s definitely not ‘out of sight, out of mind’!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I’m still pondering about retirement too, I’ve done so many Google searches that I’m now getting Ads about retirement showing up in my feeds – hahaha! Here’s a short list of things that have caught my interest so far:

Join a quilt guild
Join a book club
Join a walking group
Visit National Parks (lifetime senior pass)
Learn a new hobby
Start swimming for exercise
Travel with hubby
Travel with girlfriends

I’m sure more will be added as I continue to research. I’d like to make a decision on a retirement date over the next few months…January 1st sounds good, doesn’t it?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I’m still hoovering around 8lbs lost on WW… I have a few good days, then I make poor food choices for a few days and I’m right back where I was at the beginning of the week – grrrrr! I’m not sure if this will get easier or harder in retirement!??

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s all for now… have a great rest of your weekend and enjoy celebrating!!

Still quilting

I’m about half way done quilting on the Double Wedding Ring quilt. I’ve got 9 more circles to outline then I still need to do another 62 flowers in the center. As a reminder here’s what all the finished circles will look like

Pushing and pulling and smooshing this huge quilt through my domestic machine has proven to be quite strenuous – ugh! It’s been years since I’ve quilted something this large and back then it was a simple meander. Quilting this won’t be the last challenge either… after that’s finished I still need to trim and bind it with all it’s curves and angles!! eeeeeek!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Nothing much else going on around here…still plugging away on WW. I did start walking again last week, just short 15 minute walks to get back into a routine. Let’s hope this helps move the needle on the scale 😉

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In other news, we worked with our financial advisor this week and he told us that we’re in a great place for me to retire whenever I want – I just need to decide when!!!!!!!!!!

OK, that’s both exhilarating and frightening!! I’m 59 1/2 and I’ve worked my entire life… I started working full-time the Monday after I graduated high school, and I’ve been working at the same company ever since, 42 years (I’ve survived a number of acquisitions and mergers).

Now my brain is working overtime trying to figure out exactly what would I do every day if I retired??? I don’t want to sew & quilt every waking hour…I would get burned out. My days have been so structured for the past 40+ years… I’m not sure what to do with myself if I’m not accountable to someone/something else???

Am I crazy? Has anyone else gone through something like this?? All advice and perspective is welcome 🙂

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s all for now… have a great rest of your weekend! Wimbledon starts tomorrow!!

Quilting Double Wedding Ring

I started quilting on the Double Wedding Ring quilt for my friend… WOW, my shoulders were not ready for this! It didn’t help that my setup was not right – I was originally working on the small table in my sewing room but I quickly realized I needed a bigger table to hold the weight of the quilt, so I moved to the dining room

This definitely helped with moving the quilt under the needle but then I realized the height of the table and the height of my chair were not good!! My shoulders were killing me after only a few minutes of quilting!! I tried a few different chairs before I moved my sewing chair out to the dining room… ahhhhhhhh, that made such a difference!! I aslo switched corners so I could watch TV while quilting 😉

It’s not pretty, but it’s only temporary!! HA!!

I completed all the quilting on just one of the blocks in the center to see what it would look like… and… I love it!! So does my friend 🙂

I’m going to complete quilting just the echo lines inside and outside of all the circles first, I’ve got about a quarter of them done so far. There are 63 circles which I have to echo twice, then echo the interior shapes. Once that’s done I will go back and fill in all the flowers… Oy, what a job!!! I have no idea what to charge for all this but I’m sure it won’t be enough :-p

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I’m still plugging away on WW… I’ve lost a total of 8.6 lbs since restarting in mid April. I’m definitely making better choices and staying away from high fat, high sugar foods.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s about all for now, have a great rest of your weekend.

Wishing all the awesome Dads out there a wonderful day!!

Another quilt finish!

I put the finishing stitches in the binding after last week’s post and went outside for some pictures. Really happy with how this turned out 🙂 This was April’s pattern from the Color Blocks QAL, called Cheer.

The quilts I made in Jan, Feb and Mar and now this April one are all in a box waiting to be shipped out tomorrow to Little Lambs Foundation as part of the Hands2Help Charity drive.

I also made a few more blocks for the May pattern called Gemstone. I’m making 7 blocks from 5 colorways of scraps… so far I’ve got sapphires, emeralds, rubies and amethyst. One more color to go and I’ve decided I’m going to use white/gray to represent diamonds. I’m still deciding what I want to use for background but I know I want something dark so I’m planning a trip to my LQS to do some browsing 😉

I made the blue & red blocks using my new Singer Patchwork and she worked beautifully – but I used my Pfaff for the purple ones cuz I just needed to sit down and sew. I’m going to have to find a place for my Singer where I can sit & sew if I want to use it for more than just a few blocks – because standing & sewing is just not for me 😦

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Look at these cute nails! These are Impress Press-on nails (not an affiliate) and I’ve been using them since the pandemic started. I just love how easy they are to apply (the glue is already on the back, just peel & stick) and they last me about 2 weeks – depending on how much dish washing I do 😉 They have so many cute colors and designs and run from $7-$10. You can also get them at local stores like Target, Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, etc. As you can see from the background, they also carry a selection of OPI colors!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I had a great week on WW… I was down 1.8lbs!!! Woot woot! Not sure what I did for that big win but I’ll take it ;-p

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

That’s about all for now…. have a great rest of your weekend 😀

Good news!

My Sammie girl had surgery last Monday to remove an ugly growth on her belly and she came through it with flying colors!! Hallelujah!! Thank you for all your prayers and positive thoughts ❤

The Dr was also able to remove the growth on her back paw that’s been driving her nuts for months – whew! Sammie was on pain meds for the first 5 days and since she wasn’t showing any signs of pain we weaned her off this weekend. She’s eating and moving and sleeping like normal so all-in-all it’s a success! She hasn’t given the stitches on her belly a second thought but she has tried to take off her sock and lick her paw so we’ve got to keep a close eye on her. She goes back on 5/25 to have the stitches removed.

The poor baby is also still suffering with the Corneal Ulcer on her left eye. We’ve been using drops since May 5th and there does seem to be a small improvement, the Dr will check it again when she has her stitches removed.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In quilting news… I bought another sewing machine!!! I’ve been wanting to get a second machine for a while now so I could work on projects in multiple stages and over Mother’s Day weekend I saw an excellent sale and I jumped on it. I got a Singer Patchwork 7285Q

It came with all kinds of extra feet and even an extension table 😮 It was a breeze to setup and get started sewing – I’ve got her setup on my cutting table and will use her mostly for piecing.

I used my new Singer to start piecing blocks for the May Color Blocks QAL. I had the green blocks left over from a previous month but all the blue ones were made with my new machine 🙂

It was great to have a second machine because my main Pfaff was setup for FMQ to work on the April Color Blocks quilt… and I’m happy to say I finished the quilting yesterday.

I made the binding last night and started putting it on this morning… just one more trip around to secure it to the front and I’ll be done!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In WW news… I dropped .8lb this week, not bad I guess since I was so stressed about Sammie’s surgery. I haven’t started working out yet even though the weather here has been perfect for walks – ugh!

That’s about all for now… have a great rest of your weekend!!

Little change

Well, nothing has changed with my April Color Blocks quilt! It’s still hanging on my design wall just like this

I need to get it basted along with a few other quilts that have been waiting…but Ugh, basting is my least favorite part of quilt making! So instead of doing that I did a ‘squirrel’!!

I started working on some Safelight case sets for Carole at From My Carolina Home. Each year she puts out a call for assistance making the sets or donations for other supplies that go into the bags. I’ve made 3 sets so far and I’ve got fabric pulled for 2 more. These come together pretty quickly and each set can be made with 2 FQ of coordinating fabrics.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In other news, I’ve been eating pretty good following WW guidelines and I’m down another 1.4lbs. Here are a few yummy lunches from this week.

We’ve been eating out a little more now that we’re both fully vaxxed and I’ve been able to make better food choices and still not feel deprived.

That’s about all for now…hopefully I can get my rear in gear and get those quilts basted this week 😉

Have a great rest of your weekend!!