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Thursday, March 29, 2012

What Happened to the Warm Weather?



     Last week we had temperatures flirting with high 70s and low 80s, not so this week. The forecast on Monday was for freezing and below freezing temps, so off to the pet store I went to find Emma a little coat.


  
     Doesn't she look stylish? Let me share one more photo. Here's Emma climbing into her toy box to retrieve another toy.  Besides being mighty cute, she's also quite resourceful.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Springtime Joy


     Every night I collect Emma's toys and put them in a box, and every morning she pulls them out. It has been a week since I brought Emma home, and she is a bundle of fun. Normally, I would have spent this weekend quilting with a group of friends in Stoughton. Since they were all eager to meet Emma, we stopped by for a few minutes. They thought she was adorable, and Emma enjoyed meeting everyone. 

     Later when the sun came out, I took this shot of Emma with a patch of daffodils. It gives a good indication of how tiny she is. She is now twelve weeks old.





Thursday, March 22, 2012

Emma and Valerie



     Yesterday when my friend was holding Emma, she caught sight of Valerie, my goldfish. They had a brief staring contest. I've had Valerie for three years, and how I came to have her is a funny story.
     When I was teaching, the science teacher on our team had a tank with a turtle, appropriately named Tank, in the back of the classroom. During our teacher team meetings, we would sometimes take Tank out of his tank to let him/her crawl around the classroom. Anyway, to feed Tank, the science teacher each week would purchase tiny feeder fish. At the beginning of the week, you might count ten or so tiny fish, and as the week progressed the number would decline. I never could figure out how slow, lumbering Tank was able to catch the elusive little fish.



     One day when I returned to my eighth grade classroom, I found a spring water bottle with a note on my desk. The note had a skull and crossbones and the message: "Ms. Smith, DON'T DRINK THIS WATER. Underneath it said,"My name is Blue; I'm a gift for you" and it was signed "Robert, Your Favorite Student." Later that day I went to the science room to see whether the teacher knew that some of the fish had been liberated. She did indeed know, and she gave me another tiny fish to keep Blue company. Sadly, Blue lasted only a day or two, but Valerie, who I named after the science teacher, has continued to thrive. When I brought her home, she was the size of a guppy, but just look at her now. :-)
     Emma has had many visitors the last few days, and she is a big hit with everyone. She is very friendly and loves to play and run. Oh, and one more thing, she has very sharp puppy teeth - OUCH!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Puppy Love

 
      Emma continues to settle in and to charm everyone. She loves her toys and is filled with puppy energy. This afternoon we went to the vet, and Emma did very well.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Introducing Emma



     On Friday, my friend Donna and I drove to New Jersey to meet my new puppy.  Emma came from an excellent breeder, Nadine Tare. When we arrived on Friday, I got to see my new puppygirl, and it was love at first sight. Here's Emma with two other puppies from the litter; Emma is on the far right.


     Yesterday, when we went to pick her up, Nadine gave me a thick loose-leaf binder filled with information on how to raise a healthy, happy Schnauzer puppy. It has been nearly fourteen years since I had a puppy, so this binder is incredible. The drive home was uneventful, and Emma seemed to settle right in once I got her home.
    
     She slept through the night which was a blessing as I was tired from all that driving. Here's a shot taken this morning.

     
    Now, honestly, who could possibly resist that little face?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Three Quick Things



    #1 - Besides being St. Patrick's Day, Saturday is also International Quilt Day. To celebrate, The Quilt Show hosted by Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims from March 16 -18 will allow everyone, members or not, to view for free any shows numbered 100 through show 913. These shows feature some of the brightest stars in the quilting galaxy.  I have subscribed to this web quilt program for a couple of years and really enjoy all that it has to offer. If you love quilting, take this opportunity to check out a few programs.
     #2 - Occasionally you spot a job that you know you would just never want to do. Driving past a tax place this morning, I spotted some poor soul dressed as the Statue of Liberty complete with an oversized head and crown. He or she stood there waving to passing motorists. Though this person appeared to be an enthusiastic waver, I know this is one job that I would never want.
     #3 - I won't have time to celebrate International Quilt Day by doing any quilting, but by the end of this weekend, I may have some happy news to share. Stay tuned.



Monday, March 12, 2012

Harbingers of Spring


      The calendar says it is still winter, but today's incredibly warm weather and these cheerful crocuses in my backyard definitely point to spring.

   
     Since it feels like spring, I decided to switch the quilts I have displayed on racks throughout my house.


     None is more springy then this very special one which was made for me five years ago when I was battling breast cancer by a group of women who used to spend Wednesdays quilting at a local shop.


       The back was just as beautiful as the front, and there are two large handprints in the corner with the names of all who those who worked on the quilt.      

 
     Though the quilt shop has been closed for a number of years, I am happy to say that this wonderful group of women still gets together monthly to quilt.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Cape Cod Quilting Getaway - Part 3


     This is the center block from Joanne's adorable duck quilt. She used fancy stitches on her machine to outline the duck and to decorate the umbrella.


     Terry was working on a little beach themed numbers quilt.

   
     Here's Paula's quilt.   It's hard to imagine that she got this much done in just a few days. Wow!

   
     Finally, her sewing machine and quilt were all ready for Annemarie to get busy quilting this floral beauty.

     Where is my work you ask? I spent the entire weekend working on a paper-pieced Christmas tree skirt. There are eight panels each consisting of four parts. I finished all eight of the large sections and will post a photo when the project is completed.
     Everyone had a great time at our quilting weekend, and as Louise, the organizer, pointed out, there are only 365 days until we do it again! :-) Fortunately, we won't have to wait that long to see each other as we get together each month to quilt.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Cape Cod Quilting Getaway - Part 2

   
     Over a year ago, my friends Edith, Donna, and I all began working on the same BOM called "Joy." (For those non quilters reading this, BOM stands for Block of the Month. Each month you receive a new pattern and enough fabric to complete that month's block or  blocks.)  Edith finished her quilt top a few weeks ago and over the weekend Donna completed her top. As for me, I'm still working on mine. I had given myself permission to take a break from the process, and so I have two months' blocks still to complete. I just needed a break to do other quilt pieces. It has been a l-o-n-g, time consuming process, but as you can see by these photos of Edith's quilt top it will be worth it when it is done.


     Here is Maribeth's Blooming Nine Patch.


Aren't the colors spectacular? These photo don't really do it justice.


Speaking of color, take a look at Veronica's quilt. Wow!



    Tomorrow I will post more photos of quilts from the weekend.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Cape Cod Quilting Getaway - Part 1

     


    I just returned from a relaxing, fun quilt getaway weekend in Hyannis. Here are some of us holding our challenge pieces.



     It's always fun to see how others will interpret a pattern. Marybeth's was voted the best. She fussy cut the center pieces and also paper pieced the corners. It was truly striking!


     Over the course of the next few days, I'll show you some of the other quilts that were created this weekend.