Saturday, April 25, 2015

At Long Last--Sewing Again!

 I haven't sewn a stitch since I had to abruptly leave quilt camp over two weeks ago due to the gallstone in my bile duct.  When Becky brought my stuff back it got dumped all over the place in my quilting today after Jump Pilates I spent close to two hours cleaning and this space was included!

 Then the fun started and I laid out Orange Crush.  My floor just wasn't big enough and I couldn't figure out the middle.  I suck at these diagonal layouts!

 Becky came over to sew (and we ate healthy meatloaf, potatoes and corn on the cob for dinner).  She was working on her string spider web.  That is still on my list!  After she left I finally got to the middle and realized somehow I was two star blocks short...luckily I had plenty of four patches left so I made up the hst's and then the blocks.

 And viola!  The top is a flimsy.  I did get the borders sewn too, but wasn't up to the math involved in making all the borders fit.
Tomorrow we are planning to go hiking and then to my brother's house for a going away party for Coleman.  He is moving back to Wisconsin to be with his girlfriend Chelsea.  I am a bit worried about this since Coleman really requires lots of supervision and assistance, (with both his diabetes and his autism, etc.) but he is 28 and so I am letting him try it and crossing my fingers he is more capable than we believe.  While we are looking forward to the break;  I have always thought he would live with me forever so this is an interesting endeavor.
On the weight front--I have really not lost anything in the last six weeks.  The week of my surgery I gained 5.6 and the following week I lost 11 pounds.  Since that time, I am up one pound despite really getting back to the exercise (10 days later) and eating right.  They have adjusted some meds and I am hoping that will help and I am not giving up but seriously I am doing Pilates twice a week, jump Pilates once a week, hiking twice a week and now I have added back in the elliptical and bike several times a week.  I am at 87 pounds down at this point so trying to look at the bright side..but really frustrating that I have plateaued again!  :)

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Book Look Bloggers Review: The Berenstain Bears God Bless Our Country

When my three kids were young we read to them every night and some of their favorites back in the day were by Stan and Jan Berenstain.  The Berenstains' son Mike has now written a book called "The Berenstain Bears God Bless Our Country" in the same tradition as his parents--Brother and Sister Bear learn a lesson from the older and wiser folks in the book.

This book shows how the bears celebrate their country on the fourth of July.  They make preparations for the parade.  Brother and Sister bear decorate their bikes, Mother Bear sews bunting and flags and Papa's uniform.  The family marches in the parade and enjoy the patriotic day.  
The last page of the book has a section titled "Activities and Questions from Brother and Sister Bear."  I love the conversations that can be started with little ones with these prompts.  The message of the book is a good one as all the Bearenstein Bear books are and the pictures are fabulous and engaging.  The book also includes a sheet of patriotic bear stickers.  
This is a great book for kids up to age 8, I wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone wanting to teach their children or grandchildren about building up others for their talents and letting others build up you instead of bragging and boasting about yourself.  Great message!
*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <> 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 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”*

Sunday, April 12, 2015

What Happens at Quilt Camp....

On Thursday Terri picked me up and we headed to Prescott for quilt camp!  I was so excited to be going even though I had been having some pain on and off since Tuesday.  It wasn't awful and I thought I would be fine.  So Thursday after lunch I had more pain and set up at camp and sewed anyway.  I managed to make up these two purple Betty's Choice blocks for Amy and I and the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.  
 Next I made up this block and since I had made two of the previous one and I had planned to make two sets of the outer flying geese I went a little nuts and made two of the inner one by accident too!  Sometimes I just don't know...maybe it was the pain!
 After that I got out this Laundry Day Quilt kit by Kim Diehl.  I managed to get all of the inner pieces made before bed.  I am in love with this cute quilt, love the pattern, love the size, love the fabrics!
 I didn't sleep real well so I was up and sewing by 9 or 9:30 AM.  I also made the binding.  I even got started on the pairing the borders for Orange Crush.
I started having pain again and finished this little quilt.  We had plans to meet up with Becky in town at 11 and so Terri, Dr. Kathy and her mother in law and I all went into town and did a little shopping before going to lunch.  My pain kept getting worse and before their food came (I already knew I wasn't eating) I started crying and Terri jumped up to take me to the ER.  Becky later met us there with Terri's boxed up food.  They both stayed with me and kept me in good spirits until the ambulance drove me back to my home hospital where I had had my gallbladder surgery five weeks ago.

 Love these girls, they are great friends and I am truly blessed that we all found each other!  So the ER ran tests and told me I had a gallstone in my bile duct and needed an ERCP that they couldn't do.  That is why they called Mercy Gilbert and sent me back there.  Once there, Kathy was relieved to be with me.  For various reasons I just hung out getting sicker with the pain coming and going (at rib cage and between shoulder blades) for hours at a time.  The ERCP never did get done, but my billirubin and jaundice went from bad to worse to better over the three days they were checking.  I will spare you the details of all the sickness I had, but by today (Sunday) it all seemed better.  They could not longer find a stone and felt that it had passed.  Crossing my fingers that is so!
 Meanwhile here is the picture I got of all that the ladies sewed without me.  I was tickled to death to see that my little quilt is hanging next to Terri's!  I don't know who did hat otherwise, but some really pretty quilts!
 Terri and Becky packed up my stuff and Becky delivered it to my house on the way home from camp.  Thanks girls!  I unpacked it all and took a few pictures of the groups the blocks go to.  These are mine and Amy's and a few extras of Betty's Choice.
 Kind of blurry, but all the RSC blocks so far I have done.  Linking up to Rainbow Scrap Challenge!

Secret Agent Mystery and Indigo Way Mystery Coming Along!

Here is the last clue for the Secret Agent Mystery Quiltalong  We had to cut things apart and do a bit of sewing before putting our top toge...