Let’s see if this works…

I’m working with one of my nieces to make  Minecraft quilt for her son.  There are twelve blocks, and nine of them are based on an 8 by 8 grid.  The most difficult thing about those blocks is having enough solid colors to accomplish the design, and then having to cut them into 2 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ squares.

This is the quilt we are creating:  Minecraft

I’ve made the sword and the diamond pick axe blocks which are the same size block but on a 16 x 16 grid.  Each square finishes out at one inch.

If you can see the quilt, then the link worked! lol


It’s not supposed to be this cold in the middle of November!

Yesterday they said it would be 22 degrees in our area at the peak heat for the day, but with wind gusts up to 30 mph, it was going to feel more like 1 degree.  Just 1 degree due to windchill.

We’re bundled up, but I need to search for gloves and scarves.  I don’t usually wear a hat, but if it’s really bad, I’ll loop my scarf up over my head, and pull up the hood on my coat.

I know that there is more reasonable weather coming, but we’ve already had measurable snow (on Sunday), so I think we need to begin hunkering in.  I think I may add some things to our pantry, so that we can make meals without having to brave the icy fang to shop.

85% Unpacked

It takes time when you try to squeeze belongings meant for one house, into a house half the size.  I thought I was doing a good job last spring and summer, sorting and giving away books.  Of course, I knew, even though I didn’t want to admit it, that the fifty boxes of books in the basement were going to be a problem, especially as there were another thirty or so boxes left to pack.  We begged ale boxes from Binney’s, to be sure we would be able to lift those boxes, and still some of them were almost too heavy for me to lift.  What has really surprised me is the number of boxes of yarn I have.  Where did all THOSE come from???

We can finally see the floor in the living room, and can seat visitors.  The new blinds have been installed in the kitchen and dining room.  The sitting room off our bedroom has been set up, with bookcases, a flat screen TV and a love seat.  The shelving for toys and DVDs has been installed in the basement, and TOMORROW…..they will begin putting up the acoustic ceiling in the basement!

It will take us a while to learn about our house, a full year, I’d guess.  I’m sure it will have personality changes as we change seasons.  I just realized that we have a problem at the window in the dining room.  I think we have to do something about a seal, because there was water (condensation) on one side that will damage the blinds and sill if we ignore it.  And, our favorite appliance repairman is coming on Thursday to check out the broiler and teach us how to use this strange equipment.

I find it easier to decide what to do next now that we  are so far into our unpacking.  When we first moved in, it was difficult to decide just where to begin, and it seemed like an impossible task.  Buying shelving was a huge help, allowing us to unpack the kitchen boxes.  Books came next, and everything that says “Personal Papers,” or “LLC” has now been moved to the office.  I have a quilt to finish for Scraps on a Mission, and then the office will claim my attention for a week or so.

We’re almost there!

Where did Fall go?

We had an amazingly beautiful fall!  This is the beginning of the first year in our new home, and we were very happy to discover that we have a LOT of color around our house and through-out the neighborhood.

There are a variety of maples along our street.  We have one right next to the driveway.  The city has had plenty of forethought in mixing up the specific species of trees along the street, so we had quite the display.  Our neighbor’s beautiful gold leafed maple just lost it’s leaves this past weekend, the last to go.

A tree was removed from the parkway before we bought the house.  We hope to negotiate with the city on the choice of plants to be replanted.  We’d be happy to go halves with them on the cost, if we get some say as to what is planted.  Will they work with us?  Who knows, but it’s worth a try.  Meanwhile…winter, here we come!


Dear Husband has been invited to attend the Girl Scout Dad and Grand Dad Masquerade Dance.  Two of our three granddaughters are in scouting, so both Dad and DH are going.

Dear Husband went out yesterday to Party CIty.  All on his own he decided that he is going as Gumby, the tall green character in a children’s stop-action Claymation series.  He tried the  costume on and immediately discovered that it’s made for someone seven feet tall!  I need to do a little hemming.

P.S.      The link doesn’t work, but if you go to Google and type in   ” Gumby ”  it will lead you to several You Tube entries.  Click on the one from 1967 called “Gumby and Pokey Intro.”

P.P.S.  Pictures to follow!

Moving RIght Along

Progress!  we’re making progress!

The electricians came yesterday and today, and have a bit more to do tomorrow.  My quilting workshop is now bathed in light!  Dear Husband has the plugs he wanted in the basement.  We have more light in our closet and a fan in our sitting room.  Tomorrow they will determine why a closet fixture is not lighting, and they will add lighting in the garage.

Thursday, the painter will return to finish our bedroom, the bathroom and the laundry room.

I HOPE the carpet will come next week, before the bookcases are ready to be installed.  At that point all but the living room will be complete, and we plan to take some time choosing furnishings for the living room.

Dear Husband has been very eager to get my cookbooks set up.  The shelves arrived last week, and he’s been unpacking boxes of books.  I thought I’d given away more of them. According to a blog entry by Helen Fletcher, my kitchen is still fairly well equipped, despite downsizing.

We’re using family antiques and favorite items to decorate.  I think our home is going to be very comfortable!


We have a tiny pocket lawn, with a narrow strip of garden in the back that has a variety of trees, grasses, shrubs and perennials.  One of the maples has a tiny bit of color here and there.

At our last home we raked up leaves and saved them to use as mulch or compost.  Here, there’s very little room to compost.  I was happy to receive an information page with my water bill that told me how we will be dealing with our leaves.  It seems that we will rake the leaves toward the street, mounding them up on the lawn side of the curb.  We are warned NOT to rake them into the street, as they will clog the gutters.  Apparently the city workers make the rounds, sucking up the leaves and carting them away.  I don’t know where they go.  Yet.

The good thing about this is that the leaf pickup is free.  The bad thing is that we work on the village schedule, not on nature’s.  Still, it’s a good deal.  I better go double check on those pickup dates!


It’s October 7th.  We are more than half way through the cycle of decreasing sunlight.  The sun is setting earlier, the sun is  tracking further south in the skies.  I love fall, but I mourn the loss of sunlight.

Well, maybe not all the time.  I just looked out the dining room window and saw one of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve ever seen.  Part of the sky looked like molten gold, with shades of melon behind it. There was a bit of crisp blue sky, and a con trail climbed from one color to the next. The final touch was a decoration of white wisps of cloud.  It was an amazing three dimensional gift from nature.

Our “new” home faces west.  Our dining room is at the front of the house and has a large window.  The houses on the other side of the street are tall, but they are on a lower slope of the land, so while we can’t see the entire sunset, we get to see a good portion of it.

You never know what will come your way when you make a change in your life as large as a new residence.  We are blessed that this change seems to be a very good one!

Busy Bees

Oddly, Dear Husband has been the busiest bee here.  He gets up and starts a load of laundry, has some breakfast and then begins opening boxes.  I’ve spent a lot of time in the kitchen or watching him work.  I wondered if he would complain that it seemed I was leaving all the work to him.  I was simply stymied.  There was no place to put anything!

I opened two boxes of Tupperware and Rubbermaid items.  I had one shelf in the kitchen filled with disposable plastic boxes.  I put ALL the plastic on the counters and started matching containers with tops.  I am amazed at how much I was able to put back into the cabinet once it was organized. (I can hear my sister laughing at that! :-) )  There were  a few items I didn’t have room for, and they will be stored on shelving in the garage.  The rest went either into a box for a garage sale, or into the recycling.

We went shopping last week and finally found the shelving we needed at The Container Store.  Part of it was installed on Thursday.  We have two guest rooms on the north end of the house.  We put shelving into both bedroom closets, leaving room for hanging clothes.  I began opening boxes of china, glasses and kitchen equipment today, putting them on the new shelving.

After some discussion, we decided to buy one more section of Swedish Shelving from Williams Sonoma.  That will be set up in the small eating area past the kitchen counter.  Cookbooks, the blender, food processor and mixer will go on those shelves.  They’ll be at hand, without taking up counter space.

We’ve ordered a custom made bookshelf for the bedroom.  It’s the only bookshelf planned for the first floor other than the shelving in the kitchen for cookbooks, and is fairly large.   We need to shop for carpeting in the bedroom before that bookshelf is delivered.  And then, I hope to buy a loveseat to finish the room.

The painter has been here and painted the living room, dining room and kitchen.  In the second week of October, he’ll return to finish our bedroom and bath and paint the laundry room.  It’s all beginning to pull together.  Bit by bit.


Recently a friend challenged me to take the gratitude trial.  I was to list three things I was thankful for each day, for five days.  It’s a pretty small effort.  Most of us can find fifteen things for which we are grateful.  I accepted the challenge and completed it.  I passed the test on to two of my sisters and a friend.

What I found was that I have a LOT to be grateful for.  I was surprised when I started typing  my thoughts down for Facebook.  Everyone addresses this differently.  I’ve seen one word responses, such as “chocolate,” and I’ve seen paragraphs describing a mother’s love for each of her daughters. Everyone responds to this differently, but each of them must stop and think about the quality of their life before they can answer.

I’m a list maker.  I spend a lot of time listing what needs to be done, and fretting when something on the list keeps getting carried over.  I am an impatient person, and I want to resolve issues NOW!  I was surprised that many of the things for which I m grateful are those which have come to me over time: having lived to the age of 65, having three lovely grandgirls and a grandson,  having a roof over my head and a place to lay my head at night.  Yes, I like chocolate, too, but it seemed that it was the big things in my life that came to me first.

I’m fortunate to have an established exercise class which gets me up and running three days a week.  I’ve been going to that class for so long that the members feel like family to me, and I’ve taken two of my sisters, and a niece to the class. Now that Dear Husband has retired, he goes with me to class.  A dozen or so of the members babysat my indoor plants while we were between houses.  How’s THAT for friendship!

I also participate in a small group that makes  lapquilts for those in need.  I consider those ladies to be friends, too, and would do anything they need.  We only meet once a month, but we keep in touch by e-mail, and I’m astonished at how hard they work.  I love it when I see their names pop up in my mail.

I think I may continue listing three things for which I am grateful for a while. I’m interested to see where this will take me. I know it sounds a bit hokey, but I encourage you to give it a try.  You might learn something about yourself in the process!