Thursday, February 13, 2014

Secrets revealed...

Yes, I've been keeping secrets. For months.

First, the quilting related secret... In November I was elected President of one of my local quilt guilds, Dogwood Quilters. I certainly didn't seek this position. I have my hands completely full at work right now (my school president retired in January, and my supervisor - the second in command - quit over the Christmas break), so I really, really didn't want more work, but...

Unexpectedly, I'm enjoying the position so far. It's a two year stint, and I'm only two months into it, but I'm working with some fantastic people on the board, and the members are very encouraging. Huh. I may live through this after all. **smiling**

Still on quilting (I'll share my second secret at the end of this post)...

We've been snowed in (I know, I know, everyone has been snowed in!), so I've gotten a lot of quilting done with school cancelled for so long.

First, my latest great niece (grand niece? Which is correct?) was due on January 4. Her folks live in New York, so she needed a nice quilt to welcome her home. I had some wonderful bubblegum pink fabric with lively little bugs and butterflies, which I paired with a coordinating blue floral fabric. I tried to piece it so that the focus was on the pink. I shared photos of this quilt in the last post.
Well, here she is! Welcome Amelia Wren. Isn't that a lovely name? It took her parents three days after her January 17 birth to figure out who she is, but they eventually settled on the perfect name for this beautiful little bundle. I can't wait to her in person! Look at all of that hair!!!
And just a few days ago I got an email from her proud mama showing me three-week-old Amelia trying out her tummy time floor mat. She was 9lbs 3oz and 21 1/4" at birth, but look how tiny she looks on that huge baby quilt! : ) I have no children of my own (at least not any without fur!), but I always make big baby quilts because babies just don't seem to stay small for very long. : )

Here's Ruby the fur baby checking out her new charge. Poor Amelia looks like she's done a face plant on that quilt, doesn't she? Well, I'm sure she'll be doing somersaults in no time. Go, Amelia! Work on those push-ups! Give her a nudge, Ruby.

And I was so pleased to finally get all three purple borders on my Purple Diamond quilt (folded in half in the photo due to limited floor space in my sewing room). Notice the use of the word "was." Past tense. I realized when I laid out this quilt and measured it that it's too narrow. It measures 112" long by 88" wide. I'm going to send it to my sister, who has a new king sized bed. If I add another row of diamonds, the quilt will be 112" square. THAT's the size I need for a king sized quilt. So I'll be spending this weekend "unsewing" the entire four borders (one white and three purple) on one side so that I can add the final row. I did check, and I have enough fabric for the extension. It shouldn't take too long to finish it for the second time. I think I'll like it better at a more usable size. It's a good thing Mom got a larger long-arm quilting machine. : )

Now, for the second secret...

Ta da! Meet Spook. In October (hence, the name Spook), I snagged this Spooky little feline out of the middle of a county road between two highways. He was determinedly and quickly heading for the major inter-state highway that I was also heading for.

I snagged him. He snagged me. I was wearing white. Guess which one of us got the worse end of the bargain out of that little snatch and grab exercise...
I dropped him off in the sunroom of my house and headed back into work (after washing copious amounts of blood off of my white shirt and white jacket). When my husband and I got home, Spook had made himself quite comfortable on a heating pad on one of the armchairs and declared that he was never leaving. Well, that suited us just fine. Isn't he adorable? And isn't Spook a great name for a grey kitty with orange eyes who was found one week before Halloween? By the way, he's an extremely loving kitty who adores giving kisses. And more kisses. And even more kisses. The bloody start to our relationship was simply because vehicles kept driving by and scaring him while I was trying to stuff him into a car with a running engine. I should have turned off my engine first. Live and learn. And, in the meantime, buy lots of bandages.

So why did I keep him a secret for over three months? Well, some of you may remember that I adopted two abandoned tom kitties over the past year and a half and lost both of them rather tragically just months after their arrivals. I didn't want to talk about Spook until I was sure that he would be with us for a while.

There are differences this time. The other two boys were each two years old and confirmed outside kitties when they came to us. Spook was only six months old and a confirmed insider. He occasionally dashes outside when we open the door to come in, but he's easy to catch. He's always crouching down getting ready to "attack" a rooster. Let's hope he never actually gets to the pounce stage! Those roosters will teach him a lesson he won't soon forget!

So how did my existing feline residents take the news of another mouth to feed? They were a little startled at first, but they warmed up quickly. **See how well that sentence goes with the picture? Hee hee **

Sinbad has been delighted to have anther boy to rough house with. The two of them tumble all over the house attempting to rip each other's ears off. Then they curl up together in front of the heater to sleep it off. Even the girls have developed a little more pep in their steps now that there's a youngster to remind them of their youths. It's impossible to walk through my house right now without something squeaking, chirping, rattling, or dinging underfoot because Spook loves toys. If it has feathers, it's HIS! Thank goodness he's not outside, or my bird feeders would be surrounded by dozens of little naked bodies.

Callie (below in an old photo) just does her best to ignore the little beast and retain as much dignity as she can. Surprisingly, though, since Spook's arrival, Callie has become more playful. Toys are now of interest. It's amazing how revitalized the house has become with the advent of a furry rug rat who doesn't let a little bad temper ruin a good playtime. : P

As for Ladybug (below), she's just thankful the new addition isn't going to provide unwanted competition for outdoor resources (mice, voles, field rats, etc.). Other than that, she has always gotten along very well with boys. I can't let the girl kitties around her (she is universally hated by my girls), but she shares the sunroom very nicely with Sinbad and Spook. Which is a good thing since she was shut up in the room for almost two weeks thanks to the snow and wickedly cold temps. Needless-to-say, she's delighted to be out and about again now that the sun is shining. : )

Well, all of my secrets (and the cats) are now out of the bag. I'm back at school and my sewing has once again taken a back seat until weekends. Tonight I have a Stashbusters meeting, so I get to talk quilting with friends again. What project do I want to take to share? Hmmm... I've been working on so many this winter...
See you later! I'm off to inspect the possibilities.




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