Wednesday, July 20, 2016

A Much Needed Quilt Retreat

Once upon a time many, many years ago 9 quilters from across the United States met online in a Yahoo group called Quilting on the Side. They branched off from that one and started their own called Country Quilters USA.  They stayed friends throughout the years as their children grew, graduated high school, got married, went on mission trips, had children and not all in that order either.  Some even went through some pretty horrible life struggles along the way that these 9 quilters shared with each other because they needed to have that support of prayer or just knowing that they were all there for her.  


They stayed in touch through that Yahoo group, but then Facebook appeared on the scene and they all moved over to Facebook.  They have shared life with each other through pictures, posts, emails and Facebook messenger with a couple of them even meeting face to face at one time or another.

One day they all decided that they must get together for a retreat, so that way they could all meet face to face and sew together.  They started planning the day it would happen and started looking for a place to have this retreat that was in the middle of the US.  This way it wasn't too far for one person to get there.


The weekend was decided.  

July 14 - 17, 2016

The place was decided.  

Log Cabin Quilting
Exira, IA


The quilting retreat place was on the second floor and was the most awesome place and comfortable place for a quilting retreat.

The stairs going up to the retreat had all the quilters having buns of steel by the end of the weekend. 



And all the quilters started making plans to be there.  It was months away and talk was sort of slow at first about it, but as the months went by and it got closer they all started getting very excited.  Then they all started to really decide to make this happen!!!  Some booked airline tickets while others started planning on what they would bring to share with those who had to fly in, because they weren't able to bring their own sewing machines.  We all know us quilters love to share and make their quilting sisters feel loved.  A document was created in their secret Facebook group to start planning meals while at the retreat and it took it about 15 minutes to plan on who was making what on what day.  We all know quilters love to eat good food too!!!  

The first of July got here and they all started counting down the days and the excitement grew as each day passed.  The retreat was to start on a Thursday, but a few were flying in on Wednesday and a couple of them had decided that they could drive in on Wednesday as well.  There was only one out of the 9 who could not make it at all and we all were heartbroken for her as we all knew she wanted to be there so bad but just couldn't. 

The day came that they were all to be in one place at one time and none of them could control their excitement! 

As they all started seeing each other in person there were no need for introductions of who was who because they all "knew" each other from pictures they had shared.  There were warm hugs for each of them as they arrived.  They came from California, Washington, Minnesota, Illinois, Iowa, Tennessee, Oklahoma and Florida. 

They sewed each day they were there.  And one of them taught the others how to do one of her patterns she had brought for them to make.  




Others worked on other projects they had brought as well. 












There was a lot of sewing going on, BUT there was a lot of laughing and sharing of life stories going on as well.  


(This picture was captured by one of the quilters that shows the fun that they were always having.)

At night after sewing all day long they would all gather around the couch and recliner and eat chocolate or popcorn and laugh until the early morning hours!!!  Laughter would come with laughing so hard they were crying and couldn't catch their breath even. 

They even had a party one night with even a "cake"!!!  And gifts that were wrapped in "padded" gift wrap!!!! 



On the last night they were there they went out to eat instead of someone fixing a meal for them all. They went to this small place about 5 miles down the road that served the most awesome steaks. They filled the place with laughter with everyone around them wishing they were sitting out their table joining in on what they were all laughing about. 



Throughout the weekend what was really shown was this was a family who got together for a weekend to calm their souls and escape from reality for a few days while being around their "sisters." (most had no cell service while there and it was nice!)  

They are a family of women who just happen to love quilting, but who have grown close over the years over the internet.  They love each other and encourage each other and even pick on each other just like a real family does. They know what is going on in each other's lives and always check on each other to make sure they are doing okay as well. 


The last day of the retreat came way too soon for all of them.  It was hard to pack up their belongs and load them back in their cars without tears falling, but somehow they all did it.  Hugs were had again from everyone as they started to leave.  Tears fell as they parted ways, but it was decided that this would happen again next year.  This was not the end of their getting together for a retreat, it was only the beginning. 


And the best part about this whole story is I am one of those 9 women. And that weekend retreat was exactly what I needed! I met my "sisters" that weekend and we played and we had fun and we ate too much and we laughed so hard that we all needed to wear Depends if we didn't watch it and we shared life.  They all hold a very special part in my heart now bigger than before and they will all be known as my sisters from here on out.  I wasn't blessed with a sister growing up, only brothers, but if I had to choose who I wanted to be my sisters, these ladies would be it!!!  Some of them are quiet, some are loud, some talk a lot, but they all fit together to make up a group who are the most awesome women I have ever had the pleasure to be around! I can't wait until we get together again!!!! 


Love and hugs to them all!!! 

Ang

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Working from home vs Working in the corporate world...

... what everyone believes!!

This has nothing to do with quilting, but I just had the gut feeling I need to get this off my chest so everyone understands.

I work at home and I feel very blessed to be able to do so. I have been working at home for over 15 years now, but here is the problem...

People who work in the corporate world think this is what I do all day:
  • Sleep to noon.
  • Watch TV all day long eating cake and ice cream.
  • Take naps whenever I feel the need.
  • Clean house or do laundry (Really????)
  • Quilt all day.
  • That it is easy working from home.
  • No one holds me accountable to anything.
In all actuality they couldn't be farther from the truth!!!

Here is what working at home really is versus working in the corporate word with normal hours:
  • I work 10-12 hours every day who has time for naps!!!!! or TV!!
    VS  
    In the corporate world you work 8 hours a day.
  • I am always at work
    VS
    In the corporate world once those 8 hours is up, you get to walk away and close the door and go home.
  • I work 7 days a week most of the time  
    VS  
    You work 5 days a week.
  • I eat whenever I have an extra minute    
    VS  
    You get an hour long lunch for the most part and some of you even get paid for that hour.
  • I have deadlines like no other and have to meet them!  If I don't, I don't get paid.  I lose a client, which means my pay goes down
    VS  
    You have deadlines too, but if you don't meet them you still get paid and still have a job.
  • I do make my own schedule                  
    VS    
    You work when your boss tells you, so I'll give you this one, sort of.
  • I pay for my benefits
    VS    
    Some of you do too, but some don't, so again, I'll give you this one.
  • I don't get paid holidays or vacation time.
    VS
    At most corporate america jobs, you get a week paid vacation after a year.
  • When I'm sick, I still have to work
    VS
    At most corporate america jobs, you get to call in sick even when you aren't. 
  • On days that is snows and the weather is too bad to drive, I still have to work because I'm home
    VS
    You get the day off to enjoy the snow and go do whatever you like around the house that is fun.
I could keep going, but I won't. 

There are some good points of working at home:
  • I can work my schedule around my daughters or granddaughter or husband, so I'm there for them when they might need me.
  • I can, if I need to, throw a load of laundry in the washer or dryer during the day. 
  • My work can go with me if I need to travel somewhere else for a few days.
  • I can work outside when it is nice if I really wanted to. 
  • I can work in PJ pants and a t-shirt or hoodie.
I don't get to interact with real people during the day. I get to interact with them by email or text messaging. I have my moments where I do feel lucky that I don't have to deal with the drama in an office full of women or the politics that some offices play though.

But other than those good points up there people who think working at home is a luxury are full of poo-poo!!!  

Working at home is HARD!!! I wish I could walk away after 8 hours, close the door, go to my sewing room and quilt the night away, but unfortunately I have bills to pay and this is the way I choose to make the money to pay them. 

Don't get me wrong and think I hate working from home, I don't. I love what I do and I wouldn't have it any other way. I just think I need to shed some light for those who work in a corporate America job that this is not easy and it is definitely not a job for everyone!!!!  You have to be disciplined to work from home or you will find yourself homeless or without electricity. 

So if you work in corporate America, please let those people you know who work from home know that you now know how hard they work for to get what they do. 

My rant is now over.......    

Back to quilting if I can ever find the time to do it.....    Now, that you cry about with me. :0)

(My first post in years and it has to be a rant!!! LOL  Sorry folks!!!!)


Later!!!!
Ang

Monday, April 16, 2012

Spring Fling block...

While sitting around waiting on storms to develop and playing on Facebook, I found where Carol Doak added a new free paper-pieced block. It was too cute not to make.

It only took me about 15 minutes to sew it together. We won't talk about how long it took me to pick out the fabric!!!

Here is the block. It is called Spring Fling.

(Sorry for having to turn your head almost upside down to look at it. It is right side up on my computer and I couldn't figure out how to edit on here!)

After I made the one block, I felt the urge to make three more.

Then came the decision of what to do with those four 3" blocks.

Hmmmmm....

After thinking about it overnight and waiting up nearly all night for the storms since we were told there would be a very high chance of a very large tornado outbreak, so who could go to sleep???? Hubby can and did just that!!! And no we didn't have any tornados, just lots of wind and rain. Very thankful for that.

Anyway, I thought about it to keep my mind off torandos riping my house apart and taking all my precious fabric away and depositing it all in the trees around here, I came up with this!!!


It is small and fits on this little wall just perfect.

Now I am going to tackle blocks for the Farmer's Wife quilt. Don't hold me to it, but I might hand piece the blocks!!! I feel sure after one block I will be machine piecing them but I can at least try. Anyone want to take bets on how long it will take me to make all 111 blocks?? :)

Until next time!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sharing time...

Going through pictures today and just wanted to share a few.

Spring seems to be here and my yard not only needs to be mowed but
also needs some new flowers and plants
...and leaves mulched
...and trees trimmed
...and bushes groomed
...and  ...and  ...and it never ends until winter hits again!
But let's not think about winter!!!!!!

 My garden/flowerbed DEMANDS that I make this!
Too cute and so easy.
I saw it on Funky Junk Interiors website but now can't find the directions.
It is very easy to do though and will be done here.
Maybe if you find it you can leave a comment for me of where it was!! :)


I found this picture just browsing through old folders.
Grandpa and Hayley last summer checking out the dirt around the pond.


One very happy girl when she is 'schliding'!


And as you can see in this picture daughter and Hayley are happy now.
And safe!!!!!
That is all we can ask for.

Later!
Ang

Friday, February 24, 2012

New Project

This is the new project I just started as I needed something I could do while watching TV. Bird Brain Designs has some really cute patterns.


It is a really cute pattern but I didn't realize that when I ordered it, it really isn't that small. :) The finished design is 11" x 22", but I love it!!!


It will take me a little bit to get it all completed but I already have a spot picked out on the wall for it when it is done. (Don't look too close or you will see a couple of dog hairs trying to get into the picture!!!! LOL)

Until next time!!!

Ang

Sunday, February 19, 2012

SHE IS NOW SAFE....

It has been a very long time since I have posted anything and I am hoping now that my life seems a little more less stressful that I can post more often.

Over the last year we have been dealing with how to get our youngest daughter to get out of the relationship she was in due to abuse. They were engaged to get married and two weeks before the wedding last August we, meaning me and her dad, were able to sit down and talk to her. She broke down crying because she thought she was hiding it so well but she was scared! She left him and came home for three weeks only to go back to him thinking things would change. Long story short, they didn't! January 14th her boyfriend had to be gone for a month for his job, probably the best thing that ever happened for her! He left and her and our granddaughter, Hayley, went back to Texas for a week with me to see family. She had not been home in three years because of this monster! We had a blast! While there I could tell she was more relaxed but also thinking, about what I didn't know and she wasn't sharing. We returned home and that next weekend she went out with some of her best friends that she hadn't been allowed to see and she shared with a few of them how her life was. They all were livid with just part of what she shared. This really got her thinking plus she was watching her best friend and her fiance and what they had she had always wanted but was finally realizing she never would. She went home that night and on Sunday called us and told us she was leaving him for good. No tears this time at all. We knew she meant business. She started packing up all of her clothes, all of Hayley's clothes and toys and came here. Her sorry a** boyfriend called her one night drunk like always about three days before he was to come home and this was the door she needed opened for her to tell him it was over and she would not be there when he got home. She left this idiot with only her clothes, all of Hayley's clothes and toys, but no car. She wasn't allowed to have a car of her own!!!! Once he came home he realized she meant business too and started his "I will change, it won't happen again" stories. She didn't buy into them this time!!!! They finally agreed that she could have Hayley's furniture, all her stuff out of her office/craft room, a TV and a dresser, BUT the catch was that he was going to pack all of that up for her, which he did. We went yesterday and loaded all of this up thinking he would leave when we got there but he didn't. I wouldn't even look at him, our oldest ignored him but her boyfriend talked to him I think because he knew someone had to try to keep things civil. Hubby couldn't go because he had to work and it was probably best because he still wants to kill him. We got everything. We got her moved in with her sister and her boyfriend and she is now safe and I can already see my baby girl coming back out and being who she has always been! Hayley has taken it all in and has been fine. Luckily she is too young to understand or know what really was going on. It has really been funny that once everyone knew she was leaving him for good her phone started lighting up with text messages from people she hasn't seen or heard from since meeting him all tell her how proud they are of her. She has said that going back was stupid but she wasn't ready to leave him at that time plus she needed to see if he would change and he didn't. She can now walk away knowing she tried her best. We are extremely proud of her, extremely proud of our oldest daughter and her boyfriend offering to take her in when she knew the door here was always open (I think she needs some sister one-on-one time right now), and are very thankful she is now safe with Hayley!

I write all of this because I just needed to get it out. If I would have had my way yesterday when we picked everything up, I would have literally taken Buddy on myself. He has hurt my daughter in ways that don't show on the outside. The stories that she has told me would curl your toenails! Stories that I will never be able to tell her dad for fear he will hunt Buddy down even though he is out of our lives other than when we might have to see him on Hayley's birthdays. The anger runs deep right now for me and I hate that feeling more than anything on this earth. I have prayed that God will help me forgive but right now it is all too fresh I guess. I just keep telling myself that I am very thankful for the following:
  • Cassi and Hayley are safe and happy.
  • All the things that Cassi didn't get can be replaced.
  • I will never have to pretend to like Buddy anymore.
  • Buddy will never be sitting our table eating with us anymore.
  • And that I have a God who will help me deal with my anger and my hurt for my daughter.
I am hoping now that I know that both of my daughters are safe and that I have a future son-in-law there watching over them both and protecting them that I will now have time to quilt again. That desire really hasn't been there even thought last December I finally got my Tin Lizzie and frame so I can quilt my own quilts and maybe some for others if I ever get good at it. :)

If you are reading this, thanks, and I hope that all my future posts will be fun stuff to share like quilts, cooking/baking, gardening, but most of all Hayley!!!

Until next time!!!

Ang

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I decided tonight to make cookies using mom's chocolate chip cookie recipe, which is absolutely amazing!!

They are easy to mix up

Easy to bake

Look really good fresh out of the oven

Even Bristol was waiting on hers

And this recipe makes a ton but.....
They did not taste like mom's. :(
They are good and I swear the reason mom's are so good is because of the bowl she mixes hers in along with the wooden spoon she uses.
I guess I will just have to wait until Christmas to get the real thing.
Ang

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Almost six months....

Wow, it has been almost six months since my last post! A lot has been going on but it is only things that would bore you so on to the stuff that has to be shared.

First on the list is Miss Hayley.... a NaNa has to do what a NaNa has to do.

Hayley is now six months old and boy does the time flies faster now than it did when my own were little.

She thought it was fun to sit in her dirty clothes hamper.



First time at the state fair and she would just giggle when that bunny touched her toes.


This is her starting a career as a yoga instructor.

Now that I have gotten that part of my system, but if provoked I have a ton more to share, I will share something I just finished once I found the background fabric.


Not the best picture I have ever taken but you can get the jest of what the tablerunner looks like.


This is a close-up of the block and the background fabric that took me about a month to finally find.

I have not had much of a chance to sew lately but did get the tablerunner in and now just have to get it quilted.

I am working on another sample for a quilt shop in Texas that requires a lot of embroidery work and then pieced blocks. The fabric they sent for the quilt is gorgeous!! I will share more of it as I get more done. This one I am going to ask to keep when they are done with it because I really, really like it.

Last on my list of things to share right now is the newest member of the family.... Bristol.


She is 5 months old now, we got her about a month ago. A breeder was cutting back and she was one of the puppies left out of a litter she did not have time to market to sell. She contacted me to find out if i knew anyone who would give an Australian Shepherd puppy a good home. I wasn't looking for a puppy because my main concern was making sure Indy was healthy as she has had some issues come up, but when this breeder sent me her picture I fell in love and David said go get her. She was free by the way, which was even better. When I picked her up she came with a trizillion little hitchikers (ticks) attached to her little body, enough that it made my backseat of my truck like it had a ton of dirt on it after I got her out. First order of business was a bath of course and a call to the groomer. She went to the groomer two days after I got her and the vet the same day to be checked out and to get something for the ticks and the few fleas I saw. That same week she went back to the vet to have her little girl surgery. Poor thing thought she lived there! She is turning into the awesome Aussie that she is, but she will never be as good as Princess Indy.

Until next time,

Ang

Thursday, April 15, 2010

One week ago today....

This is what we got one week ago today after only 6 hours of labor....


Hayley Dawn
6 lbs, 7 ozs
17 inches long

She is truly adorable!

Sleeps 4-6 hours at a time.

Is awake to say hi to Nana and Poppa and Aunt Amanda without being fussy.

And slept through her mom giving her a mohawk!!!!!
Mom and Hayley are both doing wonderful.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Sew & Tell Friday

I have sat back and watch my online friend Heather do this Sew and Tell Friday that she discovered at Amylouwho's and figured since now I have started taking half a day off on Fridays that I would jump in when I could too. :)

I actually got to sew today on this:

It is actually a lap quilt for Batiks by Design as a sample for her shop. Patti, the owner, and I have been emailing and sending fabric back and forth to each other since October of last year trying to get the right colors for this. We finally settled on these but we had picked out a dark green with some tan batik for the border but then decided after i got some of this all up on the sheet over the closet doors, aka design wall, that the green would blend in with the arches, so we went on a search again. LOL We came up with a tan that will be gorgeous and the green we are going to use as fluers appliqued on the border. I cannot wait to get it done!!!

I have a granddaughter due in April and I have yet to make her a quilt!!! Tomorrow will be spent on just that instead of this quilt above. :)

Thanks for checking out my Sew & Tell Friday. I hope to be back next Friday with more.

Ang