Wednesday, March 28, 2012

On The Road

I've been on the road since Saturday, arriving at my niece's home in Atlanta late Sunday afternoon. The turn-by-turn navigation in my new car worked really great, taking me through some unbelievably beautiful neighborhoods with ginormous homes.
Carla and Jeff have a wonderful home in peaceful area very near a super park.  Their dog Barney hasn't decided if I'm friend or foe yet, although tonight I got to feed him.  His dinner included a bit of the Chicken Marsala that I made for dinner - yummo!
I've been teaching Carla to knit, something she can do to keep busy while she waits for the birth of her first child.  She has picked it up very easily, even mastering the longtail cast on where so many others have failed.  She should finish her first effort, a washcloth, tomorrow and we'll move on to a baby blanket.
I ventured out today for a bit and visited a yarn shop nearby that looks like the building used to be motel - really wacky.  The yarn selection was nice, though, and I bought some supplies for Carla, a couple of patterns, and some Malabrigo Chunky to make a top down baby sweater over the next couple of days before heading back home.
The weather has been beautiful with highs near 80 degrees each day.  Couldn't ask for more!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Not Compatible

I'm loving everything about my new car except that my Samsung Focus smartphone and my Ford Focus car are not compatible.  Ugh.  This is really stupid too because the car uses Microsoft Sync and my phone uses Windows 7 O/S.  Apparently they can't talk to each other very well.  I'm able to make one outgoing call and then nothing.  Double Ugh.

The good news is I can still use my phone in the car, just not the hands-free option.  In August I can get a new phone and I'll be careful to pick one that is compatible.  Or maybe, they'll find a way even sooner to make my phone compatible -- that would be even better.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Good Times

I'm heading out to our annual Chicken retreat in a few minutes.  I've got plenty of sewing ideas ready and I'm taking my Accuquilt Go with all the dies I've bought so far.  I hope to make a few things while I'm there and show you in a few days.  Usually I take way more than I should and get next to nothing done because I'm so busy chatting and relaxing.  Not this time!  Wait and see!!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Done, Done, Diddley Done!

Phew!  Another year's taxes done.  Very little swearing this time -- it's a good year!  Worthy of a glass of Chianti.  Not really sure how all my crazy taxes shook out.  Got a severance check in January, paid most of it back, had some odd taxes on my W2.  I'm putting in a call tomorrow to our payroll department to see if they can explain something new on that form.  In the end I have a refund coming to me -- woohoo!  Let me fence....trip to???  I'm a firm believer in helping the local economy.  Something to sleep on!

Have a great week!!!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Ooops I Did it Again

Yesterday I wrecked my neck again and it's really hurting me.  I'm nursing it back to good health with the exercises the therapist taught me and laying off the yard work I had planned to do.  Taxes, yes taxes, really need to get done today.  It's so beautiful outside it's making me want to put doing them off until later today when it's dark outside.  I'll be much happier once I'm done so after a few errands, I'll be back at the computer, knocking them off.

It's St. Patrick's Day and many, many people are already at the pubs, downing green beer.  I think I'll just use my coupon for a free birthday dinner at Lockhart's and see what they're serving up for this holiday.  In the meantime, I found the perfect road trip for my Chicken group -- in Ireland.  Check it out -- great teachers, classes, tours, quilts, vendors -- woohoo!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Focus, Time to Focus

I did something relatively very impulsive Monday after work.  I bought a new car.  Was I going to buy a car when I drove up to the Royal Oak Ford dealership, walked around, and then talked to the salesman named Evil?  Uh, no.  But I couldn't help myself.  Once I drove it, I had to have it.  And I drove it home at 10 PM.  Stunned.

It's a Ford Focus SEL Hatchback and it's loaded with fun stuff.  Important things for short middle aged women like me -- power seats... leather seats... heated seats.  Hmmm, guess I like the seats!  It's peppy, agile, corners great, with gas mileage twice what I was getting over the last 10 years -- and who isn't concerned about that these days.  It's super solid -- when you close the doors you don't have that cheap tin-y sound.  Active Park Assist (kind of like an automatic buttonholer), My Ford Touch with Sync (I love telling it to turn on the heat, change the radio stations, call someone), 17" wheels, and remote start also swayed my pocket book to open up.

I was just plain ready for something fun after years of driving a PT Cruiser followed by 3 different minivans.  Life is too short to drive blah vehicles.  And since I bought it instead of leasing, I can drive it all the way to the moon and back if I want to.  Well, that's a bit of an exaggeration but years of being tethered to a lease mileage limit left me hesitant to joy ride.

If you're in the neighborhood I'll give you a ride -- you'll love it too.

It's assembled down the road a bit in Wayne, MI.  Here's a video from the plant in case you've never seen an assembly plant.  They're assembling the sedan version of the Focus but you'll get the idea.

Ford Wayne Assembly plant

And here's a future Ford driver:
Denver is getting so big it won't be long before he IS driving.  Sigh......

Sunday, March 11, 2012

GLHQ Meeting

Last Thursday night our guild hosted Penny Haren.  She was a wonderful speaker and so engaging!  She brought several quilts for us to see, touch, inspect -- she passed them around the guild as she spoke.  Here are a few of her pieces.  Guess why I loved the first one?!

She even passed around these little samples of how she takes basic piecing on the left and adds some applique on the right, to simplify the block construction:

Very interesting concept -- her workshop on Friday taught these techniques.  I had to work so I missed out.

There were several nice quilts revealed at Show n Tell but I only got a good photo of this one:

Too bad my Chicken friend Kathy missed the meeting -- she bleeds green and white!

Friday, March 9, 2012


......and counting!  Another birthday has come and gone.  Sure beats the alternative.  Busy weekend ahead with my taxes at the top of my list, right after I get my headlamp fixed on my van.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Paris is moving.... Washington, street that is.  I saw the sign in the storefront window today that the Paris vintage shop is moving to Washington Street and it just struck me as funny.  Sometimes it doesn't take much to amuse me, especially at 7 a.m.

I'm flying out to South Carolina on business right after work today for a quick in and out meeting tomorrow.  Wish I had planned better -- I could have tacked on some time to visit my niece Carla in Atlanta.  Maybe some other time....

Sunday, March 4, 2012


Last week I treated myself to the Samsung Galaxy Tablet 10.1.  I can't believe I haven't bought one of these ages ago!  I absolutely love it and all that it can do.  I've been looking for useful apps, playing games, having fun.  No complaints so far.  Check it out for yourself!

Today I spent the whole day tidying things up around the house.  My craft cave was looking really messy so that's where I started.  The sun was shining and you know what?  I heard birds singing outside.  There were bluejays, robins, starlings -- all over the yard.  Way too early to be seeing them.  I hope they're not confused!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Giveaway Winners

Well it wasn't hard to pick the winners for this giveaway.  Sheesh -- either nobody's reading or no one liked the prizes????

So ---

  • Heather wins the quilt kit -- send me your snail mail so I can get it off to you.
  • Katy wins the felted flower kit -- I'll deliver it to you at guild on the 13th

Friday, March 2, 2012

Shark Tank

One of my new favorite TV shows is Shark Tank on ABC.  It's so interesting to watch people put their dreams for future success out there for everyone to see, critique, and then either support or dismiss.

What idea would you pitch to the potential investors if you had the floor for 5 minutes?