Sunday, March 29, 2015

Book Look Bloggers Review: Bella's Gift How One Little Girl Transformed a Family and Inspired a Nation

In the past few weeks I have been reading Bella's Gift How One Little Girl Transformed Our Family and Inspired a Nation By Rick Santorum and Karen Santorum, with Elizabeth Santorum.  This was a good read in which my heart really went out to all those who suddenly discover they have a child with a medical condition who is not expected to live.  Bella is born with Trisomy 18 which is a genetic disorder in which the children often don't survive to birth but if they do they don't usually live long.  The Santorums embraced their faith and their daughter (on different timelines) and refused to just let her go.  They cherished her and learned to love even more unconditionally from her.  They realized their love for her is a lot like the Lord's love for us.  
While I did not agree with the politics in the book (he is a conservative republican), I was able to look past that and relate to the Santorums as a mother of a disabled child (now adult).  I could really empathize with some of the battles they had to undertake to get their daughter things she needed to live.  I felt like there was much to glean from the lessons in the book.  
This book was a good read and I would recommend it pretty readily.  I will be keeping an ear out to hear how Bella is doing as time goes on, she has already well defied the odds and I hope she continues to do so!

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> book review bloggers program. They did not require me to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”*

I Wish I had a Month of Sundays!

 I have decided Sunday is my favorite day of the week!  Mostly because I don't work and there is usually hiking and sewing.  Kathy, Jill and I met up with the Chubby Chicks Meet Up group (at 7:15 AM) and went hiking at the Lost Dutchman-Treasure Loop Trail.  We have long heard it is a moderate level hike and it gorgeous.  We had a good time with about a dozen of us hiking along.
 This picture really shows how much thinner my neck and face have become--I feel so much more healthy than I have been for years!  I did jump Pilates yesterday and woke up with sore thighs (especially the left one) and after hiking three miles every step hurts!  Pilates again in the morning, we shall see how that goes!
 I didn't work on Wild and Goosey last weekend or this weekend, but I did lay out all the blocks to see how it big it is.  I have 68 blocks done and need at least one more row.  I packed it up to take to Quilt Camp so I can get a block or two done there.  I also packed up some purple for my Betty's Choice blocks and to make the flying geese for whatever RSC challenge blocks come up.
I spent most of today finishing up the blocks, half blocks and quarter blocks for clue five of Orange Crush.  I have to make about thirty more little blocks for the border--hoping to do that before camp and then this one can be sewn up at camp!
Still so much to prep but I am running out of zip--hiking at the crack of dawn takes it out of me!

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Classic Meets Modern is a Flimsy!


I really enjoyed the Classic Meets Modern BOM all year long last year.  Not sure how I haven't found time to sew the blocks into a flimsy until tonight but luckily Erin is hosting one last linky so that pushed me to get it done!  Go to Sew at Home Mummy to see hers and all the other gals' fabulous creations!  I liked Ella's layout (the first in the linky) so much (and since I am not creative that way) I basically copied her though my colors and such are all different.  Hope she sees that at flattery--I just am a pattern follower!  I looked at all the link ups and they are fantastic, but her first one still grabbed me!




Catching up on Yellow!

 I am now caught up on the Rainbow Scrap Challenge Sampler!  WHOOT WHOOT!  Yellow is done and next month is purple.  I have already prepped some purple to take to quilt camp with me in two weeks.  That reminds me I have some cutting/prepping to do for that!


And though my blocks aren't purple I am linking up to the RSC Challenge anyway!

Saturday Sewing--Getting Back on Track!


 Last Thursday Becky and I volunteered at the quilt show together.  We worked the membership table on preview night.  We managed to walk the show after before closing and we saw our guild member Debbie's quilt which she was working on at the last quilt camp.  We had to do a selfie in front of it!
 There was only one Bonnie Hunter quilt that I saw and it was this one made by a gal who was in the same class I was.  Love it!
 With my gallbladder surgery and everything else going on March has absolutely flown by.  I am just starting my yellow sewing for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.  OY!  Here is my Betty's Choice for me and Amy.  And all the blocks so far.  Linking up with Angela!


Sunday, March 22, 2015

Behind on My News

 Last weekend I made blocks 59 and 60 of City Sampler and didn't blog for some reason.  Life seems to have picked up speed lately and with switching one of my jobs (and job training all last week) my usual schedule is off.  This week may be the first week my goal of two City Sampler blocks isn't met.  Have been out of town all weekend and today I am doing a glamour shots session gifted to me by a friend I barely know who bought some groupons and then decided she didn't want them!  So Kathy and I are doing pictures and we want to hike later too so sewing is way down the list.  :(

 Luckily I did keep on with Orange Crush last weekend and got all the parts cut for the next clue.  I barely started assembling the next block (which is all this clue) and I will keep working on it but may need an extra week to get them done.  Our Open Studio facebook group has several people doing a quiltalong on this so I have been setting the pace with one clue per week and so far, so good but this week it may be different!  That is okay because people are all at different points anyways.
 Kathy is still working on her Grand Illusion. She finished clue three and is now on four!  This one is going to be great!
 My Aunt Babbette and Uncle Dan and their daughter Ashley and other daughter's son Brayden are here for Spring break (at Mom's) so I was there Friday and Saturday and we got up early and went to the Cave Creek Parade.  Had fun!  Then Suli, Ollie and I went hiking up Thunderbird Mountain.  I tried that same mountain last week but in the middle of the day and I got a bit of heatstroke.  We didn't quite make it to the top because I got sick.  This week we went later in the day (and not after jump Pilates) and I made it to the top just fine.  Gorgeous views up there!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Still Crushin on the Orange!


 This week I sewed red and black hst's every chance I got so that I would get clue four done on Orange Crush.  It worked out well because part way through the week I was working on the blocks!
 Jill and I went for our hike on Thursday at South Mountain.  We are posing at the stone house.  Kathy went with but hiked on her own and did about half as long.  She found out she doesn't have shingles but still is having a lot of pain in back and down her arm.
 A few weeks ago Lori over at Humble Quilts had a giveway for some stencils (this is her picture with the winnings since mine didn't turn out so you could see them) from Cindy over at The Stencil Company and I won!  I found out about this just as I was coming home from the hospital which made my day better at a time I really needed it!  Thanks Lori and Cindy!  I am really looking forward to trying these out.  Most likely I will be trying them on a small quilt or two that I will machine quilt.  Normally I hate machine quilting, but I am kind of excited to try it with a template that should make things look better!  I will be sharing when I am done.

Today I worked an early job and my regular gig, then I went to Pilates before heading home and hitting Orange Crush hard again.  I completed the blocks and got them all pressed.  
 I also started clue five by cutting all the orange squares.  Blue to go and then the next block starts coming together...though as I type this I think I realize I skipped making half blocks (or I need to do half blocks this clue?  I think that is it) I will be double checking that this weekend!  Sometimes my cart gets ahead of my horse!
Tomorrow is a typical crazy day and there won't be much sewing.  Jump Pilates in the morning, hiking with Suli in the afternoon and then Colton's 2nd birthday party.  Gonna be a fun, crazy day! Hopefully I can sew in the evening.  Hope there is sewing time in your weekend.

Oh for news on the weight--I think I mentioned that after my surgery I had gained 5.2 pounds (due to IV, etc.) which freaked me out.  Why is it so hard to lose and so easy to gain?  Anyway this week I lose 11 (yes ELEVEN) pounds since all the water weight flushed out and I lost.  Such a relief, I gotta tell ya!  So my total now is 88.2 pounds and I got my third ten percent of total body weight loss too.  I still have plenty to go, but I am more sure everyday that I am gonna get there!  :)

Monday, March 9, 2015

Monday Monday!

 Today I worked and then Kathy, Bug, and I went for a short hike at South Mountain.  It was quite hot and we only did one and a quarter miles since we didn't want to overdue.  Kathy is still battling shingles and my surgery was just a week ago!  I loved the wildflowers that are starting to bloom.  Cannot wait to get back out there again.
 After dropping Bug at home and checking on our homemade spaghetti sauce we went for haircuts.  I FINALLY got a pixie cut which I have wanted for about twenty years.  I always talk myself out of it because I feel like a bigger woman needs bigger hair to balance things...but I wen for it this time and so far I like it!  Kathy got hers cut too.

 We came home and watched "The Drop" which wasn't great and I sewed up these two Tula Pink City Sampler blocks.
 I am still caught up!  I continued working on clue four of Orange Crush and actually finished all the hst's!  I am going to keep up with this after all??
 I couldn't resist and started putting blocks together.  So far eight are done but not ironed.  There are lots more to go!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Sunday and I am Feeling Fine!

 Today I am back to normal!  We actually drove up to see my parents (and get some scarves and jewelry for a Glamour Shots thing in a few weeks) and got to see Colton who is almost two already!  We had sushi for dinner on the way home and stopped and got groceries and prescriptions.  After getting home I finally filled out the paperwork for my tax accountant so that is ready to be mailed tomorrow and then I paid bills and did paperwork cleanup (it overtakes the house in a week) and then I still had energy left to go and sew for a bit.  First up I did the Wild and Goosey block for the week and then I finally added the labels to my great aunt Sally and Jean Ann's quilts.  Tomorrow I hope to photograph them in the sunshine and get them boxed up to mail.
 I did sew and press some more hst's for clue four of Orange Crush.  Goal is to get those done during the week so this weekend I can get the blocks together and complete clue four.
I also continued work on the Nimble Thimbles block party block for March.  I was very careful with this (the star points are all paper pieced and are perfect) but the nine patches seem to be a titch undersized.  I have a perfect quarter inch now but perhaps I should have gone scant.  In any event, I started taking this apart and I will work on improving it.  I may redo the nine patches so they are just a tad bigger.  Still plenty of time before it needs to be done, and I want it to be decent since someone else will likely be taking it home.
Really looking forward to going back to work tomorrow at the college.  I gave my notice at my phone interpreting job the Friday before I got sick and so I am done there--just have to turn in my key on Tuesday.  I start my new phone interpreting job a week from Monday (during Spring Break from my college job) and I am really looking forward to the new atmosphere.  Most of my close co-workers already made the switch.  The place is super close to my college job and actually a lot closer to my house than the old job.  All in all I think it is a good move, though I accepted less money I think the psychological perks alone are worth it (nevermind the gas saved and the fact that I can schedule it with my college job's gaps!).  I am also trying to do a little freelance every week or so.
I am also looking forward to getting back to hiking and Pilates!  I will try Pilates on Wednesday and Friday and see if I am ready to do jump pilates again on Saturday.  May try an easy hike tomorrow after work--more like a walk in the mountains, but it is a start!

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Crushed Clue Three!

Today is the first day that I have felt almost myself in a whole week!  So happy to be off the narcotics and and feeling better!  I do not do well with pain meds, they make me sick but are necessary when there is so much pain!  I weaned myself down and then off and had my first full night of sleep last night since the night all this started a week ago.  My body is adjusting to having no gallbladder and I had about two thirds of my energy back today.  YAY!  I spent much of the day sewing!  I did all of Orange Crush Clue three and cut and pinned the strips for clue four.  

I also started sewing those hst's because clue four looks like more hours than the others.  We are putting together a unit and then one of the blocks so that is fun!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Bitty Block Houses

 I have barely been out of bed all week, but a few days ago I did sew up two little bitty block houses in Packer colors just so I could get out of bed for a few minutes!
Here are the bitty blocks so far.
I didn't work all week, went out to the doctor and WW yesterday.  I gained 5.2 pounds which must have a whole lot to do with the iv fluids because I sure didn't eat much.  It has been a hard week all around and I have been hosting my own pity party.  I cannot wait to get back to real life and feel better so I can get back to all I need to get back to.  Linking up to the Rainbow Scrap Challenge!
Hopefully I will feel up to sewing at some point this weekend and that will cheer me.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Surprise Surgery and Nimble Thimbles

  If you are on my facebook you know by now I have had emergency surgery to get my gallbladder out.  I had an attack last Tuesday night and then had pain for several days that I thought was unrelated because it was so much less than the attack.  Then after sewing all day on Saturday I started feeling it again and by midnight Saturday night I was in more pain than I can ever recall.  Kathy took me to the ER and I was quickly admitted and just after noon on Sunday I had my gallbladder and gumball size stone removed.  They said it was gangrenous and though I was terrified to be put to sleep because I had never been (and my mom and grandfather have trouble coming out of it) it all went fine and at least the HORRENDOUS pain stopped.  I am now sore and in pain but much more manageable!
I don't do well with pain meds (or any meds) so they make me sick and that makes things worse, but every day I am feeling some better.  My mom came down to be with me and Coleman and Kathy have been great too.  I really feel blessed by my friends and family and am so thankful that  I love so many folks and they love me back!
Tonight I really wanted to go to Nimble Thimbles to turn in my block but the pain meds made me really sick about the time I was to leave and so Kathy ran the block over.  Turns out I WON this month so Becky was sweet enough to pick out the blocks for me and to drop them off on her way home.  Here are the eleven I won.  Now to figure out how to put them into a top.  Love this modern Tula Pink block called Stacks.  Really fun.

Here are all the blocks everyone brought in for the block party--with the red background.  Two of us won and so we split the blocks!
I am thinking there will be more pinwheels with these but not sure just what to do with them...so feel free to give me suggestions!  I am such a pattern follower.  Winning these blocks were just what I needed though since I was really having a pity party and bawling my eyes out about not feeling well and not going to the meeting!
Tomorrow WILL be a better day!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Moth in the Window

Ros has quilted up Coleman's Moth in the Window quilt. 

I cannot wait to get it back and get it bound.  He will be so thrilled with it!