Friday, December 24, 2010

Holiday Family Photo 2010

Madelynn (18 months) Micah (4) Molly (7)
Monique (29 - I swear) Mark (old)

We didn't get our Christmas pictures back until December 23, which is why I don't have my Christmas cards done yet.  I guess our friends and family will be getting New Years cards this year. 

Today we are spending the afternoon making cookies for Santa and wrapping the last of the presents.  After the evening Church service, we have the annual Rocky Point Arnesen Extended Family Party Extravaganza.  Good times. 

I'd love to promise that I'd post photos of all the fun, but my fabulous new camera is completely out of commission.  Even though the battery is completely charged, it won't turn on.  Which is why I haven't been posting photos of all of my holiday craftiness.  Well, that and that blogger got blocked at work and I can't do blog posts on my lunch break any more. 

Happy Holidays to everyone!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Happy Halloween

The little monsters had a great halloween. Actually, there was only one monster: Micah the vampire. Molly was a beautiful bride, and Mady was a hatless cowgirl (the wind kept on blowing it off). Yes, I sewed most thier costumes -- we tried to use as much existing clothing as possible.

The kids had fun trick or treating, and then we returned to the town-house to host a small party. When we got there, we found that our bowl of candy had been emptied -- yes, someone walked into our entry way and emptied the whole bowl. Who does that? Seriously? One of the best things about living where we live is that you can leave your doors unlocked. Unless you have candy sitting close to the door, I guess.

The party was great. The turn out was a little smaller than expected due to the amazingly gorgeous weather. It was a "Come and Warm Up" party, with no need to warm up! I'm not complaining, except that we will be eating worm sandwiches for the next week and a half.

Hope that everyone's Halloween was great!
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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

New Furniture

I'm thinking of getting new furniture in my livingroom.  What do you think?

Sofa & Loveseat

I don't care for the throw pillows, but I love the clean, straight lines of the whole set.

I think that my Ikea end tables and coffee table would look great.  And I really like the greyish beige-ish color. 

This chair and ottoman would be great replacement for my favorite crocheting spot:

And I'm thinking something like this for curtains:
IKEA STOCKHOLM BLAD Pair of curtains brown Length: 98 " Width: 57 " Weight: 6 lb 3 oz  Length: 250 cm Width: 145 cm Weight: 2.80 kg

I'm getting pretty sick of the orange.  And my sister loves it, so I have somebody to hand it all down to.  What do you think? 

I've been even more busy than usual lately.  I started my master's degree, which is in Family Life Education.  It is a mix between social work and teaching, which is perfect for me.  The workload is exhausting, but I'm loving the content.  And my classmates are pretty awesome. 

But I'm not going to lie.  I'm pooped.  And possibly stinky: showers are been moved even farther down the list of priorities. 

Thursday, September 9, 2010

There's No Place Like Home

One of my favorite things about traveling is photos.  I am not very good at taking them while I'm actually in the process of traveling, but I always enjoy them when I get home.  I love this picture of myself at Stonehenge.  It was cold and windy, but hello... I'm standing in front of Stonehenge!  How cool is that? 

And I love all of the pictures of me and my husband.  We very rarely take pictures together and I probably would have totally forgotten about it if not for our facebook happy traveling companions.  This is in front of a war memorial in Moscow on the day of our friends' wedding.  It's a Russian wedding custom to drive around town and take pictures in front of things.  We saw wedding parties everywhere we went -- especially the palaces. 

But the absolute BEST part of traveling is coming home.  My jet lag is gone, my laundry is done, and my kids are happy to have mom home. 

I don't think I'll be taking any two week long trips any time soon.  This last one has fulfilled my wanderlust for quite some time, I think!

Monday, August 16, 2010

London is Lovely

I'm enjoying sight seeing in London. 

The hotel room is very small and I'm getting quite sick of my husband's incredibly loud chewing.  He's always been a loud chewer, but I can usually get far enough away from him to be able to escape the super annoying noisiness.  No such luck in a tiny hotel room.  And he likes to snack on cookies at night.  So, with no escape in sight, I am stuck biting my tongue.  I want to scream at him and tell him to just shut up already, but he really can't help how loud he eats.  I think it has something to do with his hearing loss.  Since he can't hear himself, he can't tell the difference between loud chewing and a normal volume of chewing.  For the record, I hate all chewing sounds.  They give me the heeby-jeebies.

So, back to the sight seeing.  We've seen Westminster, Parliament, Big Ben, some square with a lovely fountain and giant lions, and the Tower of London.  We spent like 4 hours at the tower, which was way to long for my style of sight seeing.  And just so you know, the British Army does not seem to have the same kind of standards for their Beefeater's as the Swiss have for their Vatican guards.  The Swiss guards are all 6 feet tall and super dreamy (you notice this when you are 21 years old, which I was when I was last at the Vatican).  The Beefeaters are over 50 and pudgy.  The outfits are just as silly, but the men are not nearly as attractive.

I'm hoping to see lots of fabulous things tomorrow.  We're thinking about going to see "Wicked."  It would be a nice birthday present, I think. I would have preferred to see the original Broadway cast, but I certainly won't complain about a West End production.  I'd like to do some shopping at some point, but I don't know if I'll have time. 

I would have finished all of the embroidery for the wedding gift on the way here, but the embroidery hoop broke.  I'm hoping to run into a craft store soon...

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Chicken With My Head Cut Off

I feel like I'm running around like a chicken with my head cut off. Mark and I are busy preparing for our fabulous two week vacation. It's our first trip away from the baby, and I'm very nervous. The little ones will be home with the nanny while we are gone, so that makes me feel much better. Their routine will not be disrupted other than getting a little time away from the house with aunties and grandparents (to give the nanny a break). We also got a new computer for Mark to use in the shop (I was sick of grease stains on my pink netbook). We are going to leave his at home and take mine on the trip with the hopes of being able to skype the kids while we are gone. I've never done it before, so we are going to practice later this week. Any hints or suggestions would be greatly appreciated -- especially if you've every done it internationally. Does that even work?

So, first of all, work is crazy busy. Summer is usually slower, which gives me an opportunity to catch up on some paperwork and take some time off. Not so much this summer. The kids (and parents) are wild. It's like a 3-month-long Full Moon. If you know anything about the population I work with, you know how the full moon goes!

Secondly, I'm not done with the gift for our friend's wedding. Luckily, I checked on the TSA website last night, and both my embroidery needles and crochet hooks are okay to take on the plane. There is even a special section on their website about knitting and needle work, which was very helpful. I will have more than enough time in the air to finish the gift. (I decided to do a traditional mid-west American wedding gift: a set of embroidered flour towels and other cute kitcheny things. As both the bride and groom recently gained their American citizenship, I did a patriotic theme. Super cute. I also crocheted a wrap for the bride. It turned out beautifully, and I hope she is able to wear it).

Which brings me to my third problem. It will probably be way too hot to wear a wrap: there is a record heat wave and drought in Russia. And now there are all these fires right outside of Moscow that are causing major air quality problems. Not good for my breathing issues. People are dropping dead left and right, and I'm a little worried. Luckily, Olesia's father is a doctor. Unfortunately, she mentioned to me once that her family doesn't speak English. I think that I will be contacting the pharmacy to see if they can give me an extra rescue inhaler, just in case.

And did I mention that I'm just a bit worried about being away from the kids? I really want to go, but the thought of actually leaving is about to send me into a full blown anxiety attack. I'm super distracted during the day, and I'm having a hard time sleeping at night. The logical part of my brain knows that they will be just fine and that I'll miss them more than they will miss me. The emotional part of me is, like, in anguish. I'm a very logical person, and I can usually talk myself down from troubling emotions with a good reasonable internal dialogue. It's not working so well this time. This anguishing emotional unreasonableness is so unlike me that I'm on the verge of freaking out. "My babies! They are going to miss me! And I'm going to miss them! Whaaaa!"

A lady I work with said that I'll have a good cry on the way to the airport, and then a minor pitty party the first couple of nights while I'm gone, and then it'll sink in that everything's fine and I'll relax and have fun. I hope she's right. She also said that I should expect to get the cold shoulder when I get home. I hope she's not right about that. I expect lots of hugs and kisses when I get home!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Lusting over a Serger

I need a serger. Specifically, I need this serger:

Isn't it lovely? Doesn't it just scream "Sew with me!" Doesn't it just look like it would be the most wonderful, perfect addition to my sewing room?

This particular gorgeous little model is being given away by SewMamaSew ( I read this blog every day. I enter almost every contest. I've yet to win anything, so maybe this is my time. Maybe I have never won a blog give-a-way for a reason. Maybe all of my good karma was being saved up for this, the ultimate blog give-a-way?

So, how would my life be better with a new serger? It would be melodramatic to say that my entire life would change, but I'm guessing that there is a great deal of truth to that statement. I suppose that it would be equally melodramatic to say that my life changed when I got my new sewing machine, but there is no doubting that. Sewing has simply saved my sanity.

I see terrible things in my job. Things that most people hear about on the evening news, and just can't bear to think about, are part of my everyday life. It chips away at my heart, and sewing helps my heart heal. I can just leave behind the horrors and injustices of this world and just focus on the goodness of simply creating something beautiful for somebody I love. I can go into my little room, with my thread and stacks of cotton, and leave the pain behind.

Thinking of all of the things that I could make with a new serger makes me smile. The beautiful little knit shirts and dresses I could make for my girls, the rescuing and repurposing of the beloved Lightning McQueen t-shirt, the hot pink wrap dress that I've been dying to make... mmm... blissful. Winning this serger would be like the universe is saying, "Thank you, Monique, for all that you do. Here is a little token of our appreciation."

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Spring Photos

A friend of a friend took some photos for me. Being a single lady, this was the first time that she'd worked with a group of kids. She said that it was hard work, but I think she did great. Yay Heather!

This is the only pic that she got with all three kids in it. You can Almost see Micah's head! They were not interested in being anywhere near each other that day.

I think that I need to take some photography classes or something. I can point and shoot, but anything beyond that is just way too challenging for me.

Not that I normally have a lot of extra time, but now I really won't have time for extra things like photography classes. I found out yesterday that I was accepted into a graduate program at Concordia University (St. Paul, MN). The plan is to finally finish up my master's degree. It will be in Family Life Education, which I think is a very nice meeting place between my training in teaching and my recent work experience in social work.

I'm a little worried about the kind of time this program is going to expect from me, but I've basically accepted the fact that I won't be touching my sewing machine for the next two years. Or my paints. Or my beads. Or yarn of any kind. This is a big sacrifice for me, and I'm pretty sad about it. I'm sure that I'll find little projects to sneak in here and there, but it just won't be the same.

I also need to come up with some super fantastic strategies on keeping up with the cooking and housework. My husband's involvement in these activities ebbs and flows, depending on how busy the resort is. He means well, but I'm not sure that I can really depend on him to be consistent. I'm actually considering hiring somebody to clean. I don't know how we'll afford it, but I know that I certainly won't have the time that I need to keep the house as clean as I like it. I'm the type of person that can't focus when my surrounding are in disarray and I' might have to just write it off as a educational expense. (Mentally, not on my taxes -- unless my accountant tells me that it is a legitimate deduction, then on my taxes as well). Any moral support you can provide would be much appreciated.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Float Fun

Rocky Point held a tropical themed celebration last weekend. Check out the kids (and their cousins and Aunty Heather) on this cute float. They enjoyed throwing candy and the spectators. Except Mady. She just ate the candy... and a little sand.
It was a pretty good turn out:

After the parade there was karaoke at the lodge. Molly sang "Walking on Sunshine". I helped.

I have a weekly garage sale shopping quest. It usually goes more smoothly without the children, so I left them home with Mark last time. Mady had a super fun time with her daddy. She sat in her wagon in the shop and watched him fix tires. When I got home, she looked like this:
Here's a closeup of the dirt and boogers, in case you couldn't see them well enough in the first photo.
Wow, huh?

I've always been the kind of mom who lets her kids play in mud puddles. I believe that the dirtiness of a kid's feet is the best indication of how much fun she's had. When I'm cleaning them up in the evening, I will often say, "Wow, those are some super dirty toes. You must have had fun today!" They usually agree that they had. And I figure that skin and clothes wash, right?
So, dirty children are not uncommon in our household, but for some reason this bit of dirtiness just tickled me. I love the stage she's at right now. She's starting to play with dolls and trucks. She sings little made up songs and dances. She pretended to cook me a snack in the play kitchen the other day -- and warned me that it was "hot" when she handed me the little plate. And, just like her brother and sister, she plays outside and comes in dirty. Too cute!
And I promise I washed her up! I may let them get dirty, but they do not stay dirty!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

New Toy

I made a serious impulse purchase and bought one of these today. It's a digital still and video camera in one. My little kodak-that-could broke over the weekend. I will send it away to get repaired, but I thought that it might be a good idea to own a second camera. I found this and thought that the video option made it even more practical.

Do any of you have one like this? Did I make a wise purchase?

We went to the cabin this weekend and there was a mama deer and triplets chowing down 15 feet from our big picture window. And no camera. Plus, I missed all the cute cabin-y kids pictures. Bummer.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Weekend Projects

I'm so looking forward to the weekend starting that I can barely contain myself. I've got some fun projects planned and I can't wait to get going on them.

I'm going to finish up Molly's reversible sun dresses. My thought was that maybe she wouldn't change her clothes five times a day if she could just turn the dress around and get a whole new look. We'll see how that goes. She wants matching dresses for her American Girl doll, but I think I'm going to have her work on that herself and just help when she needs it.

I'm also bound and determined to make some upcycled underwear for the kids. I've got all of these cute t-shirts with one little hole or stain that I've just not had the heart to throw out, so I think that this will be the perfect project to put them to good use. I've surfed the web and browsed tutorials in preparation. Some of them are pretty good (This one's my favorite: I'm going to make my own pattern, so we'll see how that goes. I want to try to not use elastic, and that might be a little bit of a challenge. Any suggestions would be very much appreciated.

And just so you don't think that I'll be sitting on my bum all weekend, I'm also planning to teach the nanny how to do back handsprings. We've been working on back walkovers, and she's almost got it figured out. She has a cheerleading thing at the U of M next week, so she doesn't have much time to prepare. Luckily for her, she just happens to be working for one of the four people in the tri-county area that can actually teach her how to it. The pay may not be great, but the benefits seem to be working for her.

To top it all off, the resort has some sort of summery celebration planned. There is a parade on Saturday, and the kids want to make a float. I also think that this might be a good opportunity for Molly to do the lemonade stand that she's been talking about since February.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Cutest Dessert Ever

We had a family pot luck on Monday evening. The nanny and I made these to bring. By the time I got these pictures taken, they'd melted a bit, but they were still cute.

The grill base is a brownie and the food is salt water taffy. We couldn't find the candy that the directions suggested, which would have been much easier, but I think that the taffy turned out better. Look at how cute the shrimp kabobs turned out:

We even put little grill marks on the food. Sweet, right?
How do food bloggers get such awesome pictures of their food? I had a neck of a time getting these -- I guess natural lighting would have helped, but they didn't last until the next morning!

July 4th Fun

As part of our holiday festivities, we went tubing this weekend. Nephew Collin said that it was the greatest experience of his whole entire life (all 10 years of it)! As you can see, everyone else had a blast, too!
Tubing was super fun, as was the whole weekend. We did a great deal of lounging around and enjoyed the Arnesen Beach Firework Potluck on the evening of the 4th. Mady even enjoyed them. About five minutes into the fireworks show, I asked her if she liked fireworks. She nodded yes vigorously. Five minutes later I stuck my head into the stroller to check on her, and she was fast asleep. I guess she didn't like them enough to stay awake...

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Salt in Wound

As if the breakdown of my stupid van wasn't bad enough, look what I saw pulling into the parking lot (in my father in law's full sized Ford pick up) coming back from my lunch break.

Yep, that's my Vibe. I asked the new owner if I could please buy it back from him. He said that I did not have enough money to buy it back from him. I lied and told him that I had a lot of money. He said something along the lines of Bill Gates not having enough money to buy the car from him.

Yes, he loves it too. I'm not the only one. I'm not even romanticising it in hind sight. He loves it so much that he sold his other car.

God, I miss that car. I wish I had been able to find more petite car seats for my darling angel children.

Stupid van.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Stupid Mini Van

I seem to have bad luck in the vehicle department. Earlier this spring, this happened:

Notice the wonky angle of the tire. That’s due to a snapped ball joint. It snapped while I was driving down a gravel road at about 45 miles per hour. Needless to say, I swerved out of control. Luckily I was able to keep the vehicle on the road and upright.

But as you can see by the tracks in the pictures, it was a close one. Hitting that ditch at 45 mph would definitely caused a roll over. My kids were with me, so I’m sure you can understand how lucky we were. We were also only about 5 miles away from home and only had to wait for about 10 minutes before my hubby came to pick us up, which was also quite lucky.

Fast forward a couple of weeks, and I got a flat tire. Like the snapped ball joint, this was on the rear drivers side. I drove all the way to work (remember that it’s a 43 mile drive) without noticing it. By chance my husband had made his monthly trip to town that day and was able to patch it up while I was working. Again, I was quite lucky.
Well, this morning my luck ran out. As I type this (in a word processor document, which I’ll paste into blogger later) I am sitting in my van on the side of the road. Flat tire again. Rear driver’s side again. This time, I didn’t make it all of the way to work. This time, I wasn’t just five minutes from home. I’m halfway to work.

I tried to use my handy built in air compressor, but nearly 10 minutes crouched at the side of the road only produced 1 additional psi in my tire. I tried to limp the rest of the way to the nearest town, which is only about 4 miles away, but the “thump, thump, thump” noise and bouncing made me change my mind and find a nice place to pull off the road. My husband is on his way. Supposedly. I’ve been sitting here a long time.

Sitting here in my broken down vehicle makes me miss my old car. It was the best car ever. I drove that sucker for over 100,000 miles my very own self and I was never broken down on the side of the road. Not once in five years. I loved that car so much that I crammed three car seats in the back for nearly a year. It was a Pontiac Vibe and was clearly not designed for three car seats in the back seat. But I crammed those kids back there and listened to them complain about being squished because I loved that car.

With the new mom-mobile mini van, we have a lot more room but we seem to have a lot more problems as well. Ugh! I wish we had mass transit! What I wouldn’t do for a rural train system…

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

On the benefits of domestic employees

For the summer, I've hired a teenager to stay at my home and care for my children. This allows me to wake up super early and get only myself dressed, fed, and out the door. If I shower the night before, I can do it in twenty minutes. I can then drive to work and put in a 10 hour day while my children sleep in as late as they'd like and spend a leisurely day tootling around the house. I found a particularly wonderful teenager, and I come home to happy children and a clean home. And since I hired a teenager and not a professional nanny, it's not any more expensive than my usual daycare bill.

It's bliss, pure bliss.

Coming home to a clean house is the most amazing, life changing thing that's happened to me since the birth of my last child. I marvel at the sudden existence of free time. I obviously give her the weekends off, but the effects of her presence continue while she's gone. This weekend I:

* did like 12 loads of laundry
* organized my entry and finally got all of the hats and mittens washed and stored away. Yes, it's June and I still had hats and mittens out.
* shampooed the carpet in the entry. It was really gross and took a long time.
* crocheted 5 or 6 dishclothes. We were running low.
* hooked up the new modem and wireless router. Our old one was fried when we got hit by lightening a couple of weekends ago.
* watched Julie and Julia from Netflix via our wii. So handy... and I can fold laundry when it has to take little loading breaks. And Meryl Streep needs more Oscars. That woman is amazing.
* put a good sized dent in the flooring installation in my bedroom. It's been partially tiled for like 6 months. I think that I'll finally be able to finish it this week.
* cleaned the rarely used dining room (also known as storage room #2). The table is completely clear.
* dusted. really!
* scrubbed (really scrubbed and not just wiped down quickly) the shower. I forgot that it was white and not the ivory color that it usually looks.
* started a lovely shawl for a friend who's getting married in August.
* went fishing.
* went shopping for something other than groceries (crafting supplies for the friend's wedding gift).
* snuggled my kids.

* snuggled my husband.

I love my life right now.

Friday, April 16, 2010

SO Busy Writing

I've been super busy working on patterns for what I hope will eventually be a book. It's all I can think about lately and I find myself being very distractable. I've got all of these little post-it notes with pattern sketches stuck to everything! I seriously found myself typing while I made supper the other night. Stir, type, stir, type... As I get a little farther in the process, I'll share more details, I promise.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Easter and Mady's Birthday

Our family had a great Easter. The children wore their matching outfits with out complaint, and I'm smart enough to know that this won't go on for long. Micah had never worn a tie before, so he frequently patted his chest and told us that he was handsome. We, of course, agreed. Unfortunately, I could get all three of them to pose together for a picture. The closest I got is this one where you can only see the back of Mady. I guess that you'll have to just look at the separate pictures and imagine them all standing nicely together and smiling beautifully.

The day before Easter, we celebrated Madelynn's first birthday. Being a bit of a princess, she didn't even get frosting all over herself.

And, somehow, in the midst of all of this excitement, I sewed myself a shirt (I originally intended to enter it into Made By Rae's Spring Top Contest -- but I don't know if I'll get around to it). I was so inspired that I finally finished my magenta sweater. I love it.

Since then, I've sewed myself a sleeveless shirt with the same pattern as the floral one, but I haven't gotten a picture of it yet.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Challenge of the Utmost Kind

I've joined Dottie Angel's Challenge of the Utmost Kind The challenge consists of buying only used or handmade items for my home or self (clothes) for a year. I will be making some exceptions (the tv and blue ray player that I already have on lay-away and socks and underwear -- no used skivvies for me!) but otherwise I will diligently follow the challenge guidelines. Of course, this shouldn't be a gigantic problem with my love of crafting and thrifting -- Fun, fun, fun!!

I've not blogged in so long... I've missed it! My grown-up job has been quite busy and I've not been good about making time for myself. I will try to do better.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Portfolio on Flickr

Just as I suspected, I'm spending quite a bit more time on my new computer. I finally got around to setting up an online portfolio. I just did a few projects to start with, but I think that I like it so far.

My Portfolio

Friday, January 22, 2010

Super Cute New Netbook

I got my new netbook in the mail today. Isn't it cute? And it works SO much better than our laptop with the broken screen that I've been stuck using for the last few months!!

I suspect that it's portability and sheer attractiveness will increase my blog posting and facebook participation tenfold. The other ladies in the coffee shop and library will ooh and aah with admiration and jealously. Or, they'll look at me and think "What is with the grown woman and the barbie computer? Does she think she's 11 years old?"

Either way, I will happy just to have a screen that works on a computer that weighs less than ten pounds!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Famous Fishermen

Mark and Micah are in "In Fisherman" as well!

We went to the grocery store on Wednesday night and Micah saw "Midwest Outdoors" on the newsstand. He was terribly excited. "Look Mom! It's ME! And my DAD!" He jumped and threw his arms all over and squealed with excitement. The fisherman standing in line behind us at the checkout was very impressed, as were the kids from his daycare who happened to be shopping too. He BEAMED with pride as they congratulated him.

I'm afraid all if this exposure it going to go his head!!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

My Boys -- The Cover Models

Aren't they handsome?

This same picture was on the cover of "Outdoor News" a few weeks ago. Mark says they never do that (use the same picture on the cover of a competing publication) so it's a pretty big deal.

The Work Jeans Quilt

Even though people generally see my husband on TV and assume that he's got a fairly glamorous day job, this couldn't be farther from the truth. He brings our little guy out fishing on the weekends and will go out on the ice to hang out with my dad when he's up, but otherwise he really doesn't do all that much fishing. The majority of his work week (which is like 80+ hours in the winter) is spent in the shop. He's got a couple of mechanics to help him, but he is responsible for the design and maintenance of all of the track rigs. All of this time working in the shop means that he goes through a lot of jeans. He tears the butt out and gets terrible grease stains all over.

I just couldn't let all that denim go to waste! I've been saving jeans for years -- literally years! My original plan was to make a rag rug. (I have one started around here somewhere.) Then I found this cute quilt pattern and changed direction.

I started by cutting 2.7 million circles. Well, it felt like 2.7 million, but was really only like 200. About a hundred denim circles from the old jeans and another hundred in flannel. After sewing each denim circle to a flannel circle (right sides out) I stitched them into rows. Cutting and sewing the circles was tedious, but getting them into rows was actually kind of hard. The problem is that work jeans are about twice the thickness of standard denim. It was heavy and very hard to maneuver.

Assembling all of the rows just about threw my back out. Oddly enough, I only broke 3 needles and got like 10 errors on my machine. When I made my brother's Crown Royal quilt, I broke nearly a dozen and I think my machine spent more time beeping at me that actually stitching!

Every time I make a full size quilt, I get about halfway done and have this incredibly strong urge to quit. I can make a baby quilt and breeze through it. I can do table runners and place mats and all things kitchen related. I've even done okay with some "throw" sized quilts. But big quilts kick my butt.
I just about gave up a couple of different times, but I did finally finish the quilt. In all honesty, I had some pretty crooked quilting at the end -- the white zin was my quilters equivalent to liquid courage. It took me a couple of evenings to get it all fringed up, but I'm pretty happy with the results. The hubby seems pretty happy with the results, too. After a super long day at work, he usually crashes on the couch, so he's getting a lot of use out of this very heavy, but very snuggly, quilt. Plus, I chose fabrics that match our family room, so I don't nag him to fold it up and put it away every morning!
Above are picture of the front and back of the quilt. Of course, Molly couldn't let me take pictures of any sort without posing for a few. Notice the grease stains on the denim -- extra character, right?
This is the hubby -- enjoying his quilt. Yes, he really is sleeping -- I took this like 10 minutes ago.

Welcome Followers!

After a few months of faithfully writing to a very shy audience (I mean you my loving family!), I have real followers. Whoo hoo for me! So: Welcome to my followers. It's lovely to have you. I'll do my best to say something interesting for you.

Coming soon:
* The epic story of my husband's work jeans' quilt (with pictures!)
* My latest adventure in being a tightwad (My thriftiness might be getting out of hand).
* My frozen water saga (It was -40 degrees this weekend and by pipes burst!)

* a give-a-way! I'm not sure what I'm giving away yet, but it will be Fabulous, I promise.

I've been wanting to do a give-a-way, but didn't have anyone to give something to. I enter them when ever I find one on the blogs I read, and I have been itching to do some giving. So, once I reach 20 followers, I will do a fabulous give-a-way! To help me get to 20 followers, please refer your own friends a followers to my blog. For each new follower that you send my way, I will give you an extra entry in my first give-a-way! (New followers, please leave a comment on this post with the name of the person who referred you!)