Monday, September 23, 2013

Food, garden, celebrations and....sewing!

It has been a busy couple of weeks here. The weather is changing, too...lots more rain and wind lately. And fog!!

Just look at that harbor! It was foggier earlier but I didn't get my camera out until after I fed the kitties. Of course! We've had high winds some days along with lightning and thunder; maybe you saw some of our weather if you watched the Seahawks game last Sunday. Fall has landed in the Pacific Northwest...and right on time!

Our little town had a quilt festival where the organizers and volunteers hung quilts up and down our Main Street - about 3 blocks long.

Just a few that were hung. On September 18th, the Great Wheel in Seattle lit up in the color teal to call attention to Ovarian cancer and my dd and I went over to see it.
This picture was taken from the ferry on the way over to 'the big city'. It was very beautiful.

Then there was a street fair on the island and the weather was gorgeous. We visited vendors, sat in the wine/beer garden and listened to the bands play while people danced. 
We enjoyed! And L's hair is growing out nicely. Now if only she could get her energy back! I will have to get used to being grateful for the good things in life. She looks great now that she's 6 weeks out of chemo.

Then there was my gson's birthday party during which we ate lemon meringue pie.
He turned 14; I remember seeing the picture of this guy in utero so hard to believe how quickly the years go by. So, we also harvested more vegetables from my dd's garden. Lots of tomatoes!

I've done some sewing but really very little....still need to complete one more row to make this lap quilt 5 (45") across and 6 (56") down. I'm going to add some sashing around the sides also to make it more inches longer and wider. It'll be nice for my dd to keep her toes warm this winter.

One thing I'm trying to figure out is why I can't turn out a quilt a week like some people are able to. Could it be due to this guy?

I'm the slowest quilter in the world, I think! Ah each his own!


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

As far as I got...and Life!

This is all I've done on my latest quilt, so now I have a couple (2) of quilts I have to work on after I complete this one. My dd likes the colors so I want to get it done first. Then I won't start anything else until I get those other two (or 3) done. lol

I do like the orange fabric I'm using for sashing but I have to carve out some time to get the rest of the blocks sashed. Not an easy job. It's my grandson's 14th birthday tomorrow; can't wait for the partay!!

My dd spent a week in the San Francisco area visiting with her brother, his wife and her nephew and nieces. She had a great time swimming every day in the pool, shopping, and chatting up the kids.
About a week later she went to see her gynecological oncologist, who thankfully is letting her return to work on October 1st. Dd still tires easily but is looking forward to getting back to her customers and co-workers, who have all been rooting for her during her ovarian cancer fight. L's hair is starting to grow, too, which is a great picker-upper for her. Dr. Gray said dd had a 5% chance of living for 5 years. I am pooh-poohing that prediction. There are great advances being made and L has a fighting spirit! She goes on a list for a stem cell trial in 2014 when it starts; she has to be off chemo for 6 months though in order to be accepted. I know she'll make it!

I have a new fish but haven't named him yet. He's very handsome and comes to see me when I feed him. He learned pretty fast about the 'food drop'.

So, next time I hope to be able to show you a completed top. 

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Found it!

 ....and here is the link!

I'm off to sew and hopefully finish my quilt top! Yay!  Not much in the way of instructions but enough to finish the 
top. I'm going to add sashing between the blocks anyway. I may even add some plain muslin areas too, but right 
now I sew!

......later....I've finished 12 more blocks. Now to square them up and add sashing.
So, I have two quilts on the wall now but I'm only working on the one. The other waits...for what I don't know.

The blocks kind of run together without sashing. Laura likes the colors so maybe it will be given to her when
It's done.

Jules is helping me today, laying on the fabric I've chosen for the sashing - a vibrant orange! Actually, not very 
helpful at all!

My dd was somewhat nauseous today after her Friday chemo (the very last one) but took an anti-nausea pill 
and came out to a movie with me today. We saw the new Matt Damon movie, a futuristic drama with machines 
that could cure illnesses. Oh, if only we had them in this day and ionizer to zap disease!


I started making this quilt from a pattern on my iPad. Everything was going well until I got busy with other things....and now I can't find the pattern. It's a quick quilt to make....and that's why I started it. No fussy cutting, just some wonky blocks that make the quilt top look interesting interspersed with some plain squares.  Easy, right?

If only I could remember how to make these blocks. I know that it involves stacking 9 squares, then wonky cutting them but it also involves moving different pieces of the cut block so that each block is different when done.

To lose a pattern! When your top is almost complete! How infuriating is that? Grrrr.....

Oh well, I've hunted through all of my bookmarks and don't see it so I guess I should just get on with it instead of complaining.

ps: my dd did do a final chemo and seems to be doing well, except for those numb feet. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

An update - Back Soon!

My lovely dd completed almost all of her chemo treatment but wasn't strong enough for the final one.  She was happy to be done with the drugs. Saw her doctor on July 16th and is back on chemo through August 9, 2013. She is not a happy camper right now.

White blood cell count way down so she was given a shot that helps build bone marrow - she's aching in every bone right now, so hoping that pain is over soon. The neuropathy in her feet is the worst - burning, numbness and swelling. She's taking B6 and Neurontin but has just started  that new drug....hopefully she will have no side effects.

But even so, Laura is enjoying the summer sunshine and beautiful flowers.

Remission ....come on! Please! So she can have a break from these horrible drugs.

Monday, July 01, 2013

My Sewing Room

I sew in a very small corner of my dining room. The dining room table does double duty as a layout space as well as for eating. I just remove the flowers (or centerpiece) and it's all set.

But here's the other side where all my sewing equipment resides, and I mean everything except for my fabric stash, which resides in a cabinet in my bedroom. The room has a cubbyhole (maybe meant for a sideboard. It's 48 inches wide.

My work table (Ikea) has a side table pullout, which was probably meant for a computer but is perfect for my sewing machine as well as a small cutting mat. My display wall is an old white-ish bedspread that I stapled to the wall. It's so useful and can't imagine life without it.

My threads and pinup wall is opposite my display wall and is very crowded right now. Maybe a redesign is in order!?

Stash being worked with

Under table storage area

The featherweight stored temporarily under the dining room table

Side table cutting mat

All electricals are on a strip and when I click it off, it's all off at once.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Doing some quilting

OThis is not the final layout; it's only laid out on a bed top so we can visualise the entire quilt and the individual blocks. As you can see, the quilt we're making is really eclectic and bright. I like my quilts like that, but this one is for auction so I wonder if many others will like it.

You'll recognize that some of the blocks were made for a quilt I was making last year - my red and white quilt. They have been requisitioned to make this quilt which we will auction off to raise money for my dd who hasn't been able to work because of ovarian cancer. Can't tell you how much I hate the C word!

Anyway, my eldest dd is doing most of the work with some block help from friends and family. You may recognize the red and white blocks from a quilt I was making last year; I donated them to Laura's quilt. I'll post pictures when it is complete and ready for sale.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Life...Life...and more Life

This is a new post using the Blogger app on my iPad. Want to see if it makes it easier to write and post. So let's catch up....

My youngest dd has ovarian cancer which has taken my life in a new direction. Laura has always been a huge support to myself and her older sister so the changes have been monumental to our lives, and poor Laura is having a difficult time coping with the changes which is only natural. First, there was the shock of hearing the diagnosis after thinking that having a hysterectomy was the worst thing that was going to happen to her. Then there was the stunning news that she had stage IV which is the worst. 

For the first 6 weeks after the hysterectomy, I was completely certain that she was strong enough to beat that cancer down, but after 15 weeks of chemotherapy with the resulting damage to her body, I'm starting to question why the doctors are putting her through that...poisoning her until she has no strength left to do much of anything. Her feet and fingers have nerve damage, her mouth has sores, her memory has been impacted and she's unable to sleep at all many nights. Can you imagine what her thoughts are in the middle of the night given her diagnosis?! But Laura believes in her doctors who said they could probably guarantee her a good 26 months if she goes through all of this so I have to be all right with it too. Supportive...that's me! 

What I would really like to do is rail...rail against the lack of any kind of cure for ovarian cancer. The silent killer! Listen, they say, it whispers. Well at the beginning of the whispering should be a test...PAP smears don't work...why are women diagnosed so late that they can only poison themselves to knock those finally yelling nasty cells out? It's what doctors rely on, surgery (horrible if you're at child-bearing age) and then chemotherapy so strong that it cripples you...and you die anyway! 

Do you know the color for ovarian cancer...probably not, but I'll bet you know the color for breast cancer! Why is that? Breast cancer is well advertised and all women know what to look for; it gets lots of money thrown it's way. A 20 year old on facebook has her friends and family wear teal on Tuesdays...her way for her loved ones to show support for her. So, wear teal on Tuesdays, I do. I explain it to as many people as I can because no woman should have to go through what these women are going through. They're alone with something incurable inside them...not fair at all! There has to be a cure...but where's the money going to come from?

So yes, I hope for a cure. As long as Laura is alive I will. 

That's what's been happening in my life but I'm still quilting when I can. Laura's sister and I are making a quilt to auction off in the next month or so; I'll write a bit about that next time. Cancer is not only nasty, it's really expensive!