Monday, December 28, 2009


Every year I find myself making the same resolutions...lose weight, exercise, get organized, blah, blah, blah.  I'm sure many of you do the same--its almost impossible not to.  I used to go to our local health club every morning for years and around this time of year, we'd always take a poll to see how many new people would show up in January and usually be gone by February.  Although, I was still there, I wasn't really accomplishing much.  I've not attended the club regularly for years now; initially due to my two back surgeries, but also because I allowed things to get in the way.

I have a forming plan for this year, however.  There is a new club in town that isn't filled with college kids, where the owners are very active and knowledgeable and actually help you rather than acting as if you're bothering them when you ask for assistance.  I want to join this club.  Unfortunately, before I do, I have to determine what's going on with my back this time.  I'm having the same pain as before, but down my left leg this time.  I've had x-rays and an MRI and will know the results on Wednesday.  Based on those results, I'll either be joining this club or visiting my back doctor. *fingers crossed that its the former*

What this all boils down to is Christine Kane's Blog.  If you're not familiar with it, you owe it to yourself to check it out.  She advocates a "Resolution Revolution."  Instead of addressing your resolution to what you're going to "do," you address what you're going to "be."  You choose a word and for the entire year, you remember the word, ponder the word and do things to help you accomplish it.  I'm choosing "health" for my word this year.  One other thing I plan to do is live my life by the punch method...another Kane idea.  I like it!  Instead of beating myself up at the end of the day for doing things I shouldn't have, or eating things I shouldn't have, or not doing something I should have, I'm going to "punch" that action from my day and replace it (mentally, of course) with something better/different/new or just edit it all together. 

Do you have a resolution?  What word will you choose??

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Christmas Quilt

When the yurt is finished, I'll be able to take full-sized photos of my customers' quilts.  This was a big quilt that I did for a new customer, Kim. It was made for her grandson.  Because it was for a boy, I wanted to keep the quilting simple, so there is a large, loopy meander in the body and tighter loops in the sashing.  The border had a plaid print in it, so I just improvised, keeping my spacing even, and "squiggled" my way to a checkerboard-type pattern.  It turned out really well and Kim loved it.

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Successful Reno Shopping

We headed for Reno and Christmas shopping last Friday.  The roads were relatively clear, the sun was out and the snow was glistening from the mountains.  We'd attempted this same trip on "Black Friday," but got about 20 miles from home before turning back...for the second time.  We left town later than expected, got about 10 miles from town when it started to snow those really, big beautiful flakes.  We knew it would only get worse the farther east we travelled, so we turned around and headed back to town.  As we got closer to Quincy, the weather cleared and the sun came out and we started second-guessing ourselves. bad can it be???  We turned around and started off again.  About 20 miles from town we got behind a group of cars going 35!  The roads had snow on them but really...35!!  So we opted to go another day.

That day came and this is the weather we had on the way was really pretty.

While in Reno we bought Christmas gifts for the family and did a little shopping for us.  It was actually fun to Christmas shop since it had started to snow lightly, made it feel like Christmas. We made a trip to R.C. Willey to look at their couches.  We'd decided on a leather couch, with a sleeper for company, since fabric just doesn't work.  Our dogs are often on the couch with us and fabric just doesn't stay clean.  So we bought this one...on sale!!!

The trip home was a bit more challenging.  We had left home late again because we opted to put the horses in before we left rather than when we got back.  This is what we drove through...  Red Rock is about 10 miles north of Reno, before CA and our cut off to Highway 70.

This picture is of the truck we followed through Sierra Valley.  The roads were actually a bit better by the time we left Portola and were headed for Quincy. 

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It was a successul day despite the weather.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Yurt Goes "Live"

What does this mean???  Well, unfortunately, it doesn't mean that its done.  However, it does mean that the electricity is working, the concrete-slab floor is now being heated via the radiant floor ducting (turned on just in time for the coldest night in was 2.8, yes, two-point-eight) and the wood stove is installed and burning.  The stove is so cute; its a tiny little thing and downright adorable.

This photo was taken before sunrise and before we moved the ladder *bummer*.  I love how warm and cozy the yurt looks from the outside and it is surprisingly warm inside.  Even though the actual temperature may read 10 degrees less than the house, it feels 10 degrees warmer.  Must have to do with the radiant floor.

This one was taken this morning, after moving the ladder, and when it was starting to get light.  The lattice that you see looking through the door window is on the back wall.  The interior has lattice all the way around as well as support studs.  Its very light and airy inside.

Inside pictures will come after this weekend.  Currently, the inside is a major construction zone.  We need one more inspection, then we can button-up the walls, install the "kitchen" cabinet, clean the place up and start staining the floor.  I'm thinking I'll start in the bathroom, that way, if I don't like it, I won't be committed to finishing the whole thing.  I'm so excited...I can't wait to be inside working on my longarm!!

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Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Does anyone really buy food with Per Diem?

As you know, I'm in Sacramento for training.  I couldn't let a trip to Sac go by without visiting a new quilt shop and, of course, buying fabric.  I found Bearpaws and Hollyhocks only about 15 minutes from my hotel.  Its in a smaller strip mall on El Camino.  Its a great shop with tons of fabric displayed so you can actually see it.  I dealt mostly with Elaine, who was a huge help in picking out fabric, and with Lindy, the owner, whose opinion we kept checking.  This is the fabric I ended up with--I'll be using it to make the Pioneer Sampler by Quilt-in-a-Day. 

Since I've been in Sac, I finished putting the blocks together from my retreat quilt.  The colors aren't true at all in this picture, its purple with yellows/orange.  It looks much better in person.  When I went to square the blocks before assembling the top, I realized I hadn't brought a ruler that was large enough.  No matter though, now I'm working on a red/white/black Turning 20! 

And in case you were worried, I am learning things at my training.  Today I learned how to interrogate people and better yet, I learned the tell-tale signs that broadcast when someone isn't telling the truth. 

So, back to the original question...Does anyone really use their per diem money to buy food?  I bought some food, but buying fabric is way more fun!  I can eat when I get home.....