Various and Sundry

Its been a different kind of fall around here.  The leaves have been bright yellow, and there are more acorns than I’ve ever seen before.  Don’t know if this will show up, but here’s the one view of the leaves–it looked like a yellow waterfall to me.

The view above:

I have had six days off in a row.  That’s a rarity these days.  I didn’t have any particular obligations, and I’ve been treating it like a ‘retirement preview.’  To see if I can keep my days moving along, keeping up with the dailyness of life while spending plenty of time  creating.

I heard something the other day that bugged the daylights out of me.  I was talking to a missionary who is a quilter.  She has taught some of the people in this rural area how to quilt.  One young guy in particular is extremely talented–a true artist.  Of course he lives in an extremely impoverished area, and in fact is wheelchair bound simply because he did not receive treatment for an infection.  Basically, he only has what people have donated for him to use (us quilters always have too much fabric and are more than willing to share.)   Okay.  Here’s what bugged me.  The missionary mentioned that this guy quilts for eight hours a day!  Dang!  I have running water and electricity and…well, you know.  And I have all the beautiful fabric and thread and supplies that anyone could ever want.  And some days I don’t even get to take one stitch. There’s something wrong with this picture.

So for a few mornings now I’ve made a list of minimal chores–one regular cleaning and one de-cluttering project–and then a list of quilt projects I wanted to work on.  Its been working pretty good!  Here’s some of what I’ve been creating, both in the kitchen and at the sewing machine.

Made a batch of my fried rice–man, this stuff is good!  This time I sub’d in some cooked ham from the freezer, fresh corn, and some leftover broccoli.

Here’s a little quilt that’s been almost done for a while.  I just put the binding on it.   I think maybe you’ve seen it before.  Its just an idea I had, I call it ‘Favorite Things.’ Those things pictured on it aren’t really my favorite things, although I am very fond of them…

Close-up:

Monk and Sophie snoozing under the new quilt.  That was NOT what it was created for, guys.

I was really please to get this next quilt top put together.  It has been on my design wall for the last week or so, just working on the borders,moving fabrics around, trying to get just the right fabric for just the right place.  The center started out quite a long time ago.  I had a post card of another Japanese quilt that I loved, made of little bits of fabric.  I started out with hundreds of little two inch squares, sewing them into 16-patches.  Added a few odd squares and a couple of stars.  And then it got taken down and put away because a more pressing project came along.  So when I got the squares out again, and decided that I was done making little squares, I was really happy when I came up with the idea to make a large border of interesting prints.  (I’m sure I saw it somewhere–there’s nothing new under the sun.)  Anyway, I am very happy with the results.  Putting together a quilt like this on the diagonal is a little like putting a puzzle together–I was glad when I sewed the last piece in place and it all fit together!

Close-ups:

In the middle of sewing this together, I HAD to take a break to make some pumpkin pecan scones.  You know, so I’d have something worthy to blog about tonight LOL.  I made these last year, and  I never posted the recipe.  One of the reasons I didn’t post it was because they were TOO GOOD.  I couldn’t stay away from them.  And I was wondering why that was.  I think maybe its because they don’t have fruit in them.  Most of my ‘baked goods’ have a LOT of fruit in them.  These pumpkin scones are too much like the pure goodness of bread, if that makes sense.  However, I was able to just eat one small one, to make sure they were ‘okay,’ and I put the rest in the freezer (out of sight, out of mind.  Which BTW, is a technique touted by the author of Mindless Eating, a book I am using for my bedtime reading, and from which I will be sharing more in the future.)  So all this to say, the recipe is posted over there on the other blog.

So how’s the food and exercise going, debby?  I’m glad you asked!

Today was a weird food day, but I consider it a success.  Started the day out with some of Pubsgal’s spackle.  Yum, this stuff is good, and fun to eat.  And VERY filling.  In that, it keeps me satisfied for a LONG time.  Went for the long walk with Noah, and on the way home (I was already challenging myself to walk as fast and as hard as I could) I smelled something funny, kind of a burning smell.  And then I remembered that I had left the woodstove going, and had turned the damper down.  And that funny smell is what it smells like when the woodstove gets TOO HOT!!!  I highly encourage you to see how fast you can walk when you think your house is on fire.  Good motivation!

So then it was a little early for lunch, a little late for a mid-morning snack.  And I wanted some of that trail crack.  Okay, I told myself, you can have this for lunch, and see how long it lasts.  One package of that stuff is 400 calories.  400 highly palatable calories…  well, that worked pretty darn good.  About three hours later I had my planned afternoon snack of a Honeycrisp apple (LOVE) with some peanut butter.  The ‘trial scone’ got stuck in there a couple of hours later.

And then it was flying out the door for a quick walk with Noah.  Dinner was another bowl of the fried rice, and a piece of fresh pineapple.   Approximately 1500 calories.  I might still have some dessert…

I’m not recommending this as ‘a way to eat.’  Just saying that it worked for one day for me.  I did not get to the gym today, which I had planned to do.  Definitely going tomorrow!  Its late and I must say adieu.

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10 thoughts on “Various and Sundry

  1. I loved this post – kind of like “A Day In Debby’s Life!” Hope you found the retirement preview a resounding success! I have three handmade quilts given to me as wedding gifts (33 1/2 years ago!) by both grandmother’s and a close family friend. They are proudly displayed on a quilt rack in our bedroom and I wouldn’t taken any sum of money for them. None nearly as fancy as your pics have shown, but made with love!

  2. when the kids were little, I easily quilted 8 hours a day. Probably more. I quilted instead of exercising (no, from sewing machine to ironing board does not count, despite what many quilters think). I quilted instead of dealing with clutter. I quilted instead of cooking (real food cooking). I quilted instead of sleeping. Basically, I had the TV on for company, I ate with one hand (processed stuff mostly) and sewed with the other. This was mostly when the kids were fed and pj-ed and settled down for the night. So I started shortly after dinner and then went into the wee hours of the night. My knees and back and shoulders and neck were in constant pain. Yes, those were my ‘fat’ years. My quilting was sort of burying my head in the sand. . .

    I totally understand that this is different for you. A big factor is that you live alone and that give you a lot more free time. And I understand that you get your exercise in very regularly. And I know you watch little/no TV. But the 8 hours a day note brought back very clear memories for me.

  3. I do the out of sight out of mind thing too – with chocolate usually. Not that it’s super tempting or anything, it’s just that I don’t need to eat the equivalent of a candy bar every day. So I have this place I stash and if I really get to wanting “something” I go there and get a piece or two. If I left it sitting out in a bowl on the coffee table I’m sure I’d pick, pick, pick all day long!

    The quilts are gorgeous. I so admire your creativity!

  4. I love posts like this. The Japanese inspired quilt is gorgeous! Love it. Sounds like “retirement” is working out for you. hee hee

  5. Both of the quilts you pictures are so beautiful – I could look at them for hours! The second one is really striking with the diagonal design. GORGEOUS!!!

    And you know I appreciate the irony of the dogs immediately jumping onto the quilt – somehow they just know, you know?

    • Oh that’s a nice compliment Lori (about the pointillism) I have seen quilters actually do that type of work.

      And cats and quilts–there is actually a line of fabric out showing cats on quilts! My BFF has actually made very nice quilts just for her cats to sit on! I’m not that nice…

  6. Hey woman! Got a quick break and then it’s back to work.

    Love your little pieces quilt – so pretty!

    So was anything on fire in your house? Did the smell get inside too? Ugh -that would be great motivation to walk fast!! Glad nothing burned!

    • Wow–that was pretty weird, having to ‘approve’ my best blog buddy! Guess you replied from a different computer? or email? Anyway, guess I forgot to include ‘the rest of the story.’ Everything was fine at home. It was not actually my place that smelled like that, I guess. Hopefully all that burned was a few calories lol.

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