Thursday, January 31, 2013

January 31: So Maybe I Won't Have a 4.0 This Semester

Just finished the test with the note sheet.  I am not betting on an A or a B.  I think if I had been given more time ----- Like an hour or more-------I would have done it all perfectly, but I got stuck in the minutia of it all.  I am okay with it, sorta!

What I know is that I can do this and it will be helpful for the business, but for some time to come, I will need to set aside more time that I probably will down the road.  Maybe I am a little too detail oriented.

Even so, I am up and doing what I planned for this very frigid day.  School and homework until 4:00.  Then I will brave the elements and head home to work in the shop and do some house cleaning.  Thursdays are more like my Fridays this semester.  Then it is 4 working days until Tuesday.  (Instructor is gone on Monday.)

Life is GOOD!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

January 30: Did You Know That I Am a Stubborn and Determined Woman?

I spent a good chunk of Sunday working on an assignment for my advanced application class.  I was certain it was going to be an easy assignment because I had already done two similar, yet very different ones.  Turns out it was a nightmare!  When I went to class yesterday, I think I was so addled that I left my textbook at home.  This is a VERY hands-on lab class, so the book is essential.  I could not let go of the fact that I had to do this one and do it well because I can see so many uses for the newsletter application.  I fussed and fussed all through the lab, but then we took a quiz at the end using some of the stuff, and I was certain that I had earned my first "F".  I left class and decided to go home to study and that is exactly what I did.  From 10:15 until 1:30, I did nothing but really dig into this chapter.  I wrote a step-by-step procedure on one of my laptops while actually doing this assignment over.  Turned it in and am sure it will be considered well done.  Then I went to class, went home and using just my notes I recreated the exact same results in 25 minutes. Don't misunderstand, it is not all about the grade, although I do love "As", but more about truly feeling confident that I can and will use this application.


Guess what, we are allowed one page (front only) of notes for this whole unit's test.   

These are my notes written in 8 pt font.  I can read it with
no difficulty as long as I don't forget my stronger reading
glasses!  teehee
Thank goodness for computers because I could never have gotten 1/3 of this on the paper if it was handwritten.  Believe me, I am very thankful for the notes.  One section is the step by step for the newsletter.  The other is just about where to find certain icons so that I can complete a variety of tasks.  The "believe" is a watermark reminder and the blue at the top is a text box.

Life is GOOD!

Monday, January 28, 2013

January 28: Odd Schedule

This semester I intended to using the time before class on Mon-Thurs to do homework or apply what I have learned.  That was supposed to make it so the evening were free for quilting, reading, and of course woodworking business.  Today has been anything but a normal routine day.

  1. Slept in mostly because I kept waking up all night to think about possible solutions for a construction issue.
  2. Worked in the wood shop until 9:00 trying out our solution.  It seems to be working, so that is exciting.  Means I can probably sleep tonight.
  3. Got to school and discovered that my favorite study room was being used for a meeting.  Could not find a good place to hide.
  4. Both of my classes offered up TOO MUCH homework for this working woman, but I will get it done by the deadline.  It is what I do.
  5. Had a fun adventure working on creating a groundhog cake for my sister's birthday.  (That is a whole other story....)
  6. Came home and worked for a short time in the shop, again.
  7. Made and ate dinner and then Kevin headed off to his marksmanship group and I came up to the office to study. 

Guess who has not started the studying.  I am going to sign off and get busy.  I am making a newsletter for one class and then starting the first part of writing a social media marketing plan for another class.  Good stuff, but I seem to be a bit "flitty and fluttery" tonight.  Flit from on task to another and then flutter off to another.  Get it?

Hope all of you are enjoying your days off because of snow, cold, and ice.  South Dakotans seem to be a bit hardier and just go forth and do.  That is good, because I love school and would hate to miss a day for something so "natural".

Life is GOOD!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

January 27: Another Ta-Da

 Here is the front of Isabella's quilt.  The binding is finished and it is ready for her.  The back is fun as well.  If you notice that it is not centered from side to side, know that after several other issues with the quilt, I decided to refer to it as artistic license.  tee-hee

Isabella chose the fabrics.  I designed the pattern using
the "birds in the air" block.  I love using half-square triangles..

Isabella chose the t-shirts and we chose the background to
somehow go along with both sides.  I only had to piece one
of the t-shirt blocks.

Life is GOOD!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

January 26: Have Camera - Didn't Remember to Use

I FORGOT TO EVEN TAKE ONE PHOTO!  Brianna came to the house today to have a quick refresher on using the sewing machine.  She is the cousin making the "cousin quilt" for Jakob.  We spend a good chunk of the afternoon with her running the machine and me doing binding.  We talked and laughed and accomplished a great deal.  It was great one-on-one time with my niece.

Once again, I spent the morning working in the wood shop.  I did not do nearly as much sanding as yesterday.  Today was all about being the "grunt-laborer"!!  I lifted and applied glue and twisted clamps closed.  I may not know how to do even 1/32 of what Kevin knows to do with wood, but I do know how to follow directions.

In between helping with these activities, I worked on more comfort crosses.  There is something so soothing about making these.  Others are finding the finished crosses to offer comfort to others and to themselves when they give them.  I think of them as an acknowledgement of the strength one gains from any type of prayer!

Tonight has been all about homework.  I find it interesting how much time I have been spending on Facebook and Pinterest.  I probably spend 10 minutes on my personal stuff and then several hours doing my homework and exploring the various aspects of these platforms.  Never plan to be an expert on them, but in the last 2 weeks I have learned a great deal.   

I also spent a couple of hours on my design class assignments.  I am becoming more and more a real user of the computer rather than what I used to be - a novice with a wannabe attitude.  This week I created a wedding invitation, a dessert menu, and a challenging document that was more that text - looks pretty professional.  Love using glyphs and raised capitals.

Then there is the advanced applications class for Office - I am creating a newsletter.  This is the 3rd one for the class.  It is quite a bit of fun.  I will finish it up during my study hours on Monday.

For all you that are in my age range, remember how we were taught in typing class to leave 2 spaces at the end of a sentence? Well, that has changed!  It is one space.  If you do 2 spaces in some of my programs it messes up the set up. Old habits are HARD to break, especially as I get older.

Tomorrow, after church, I will be back in the shop for a few hours and then I am thinking about quilting another top before I finish Isabella's binding in the evening.  Still looking for a balance of my passions and responsibilities.

Life is GOOD! 

Friday, January 25, 2013

January 25: Pictures

Thought I had a number of photos to share, but they were not on the card reader.  GRRRR!  I do have a few quilt shots, though.

This is Isabella's quilt back.  Just wait until you see the front.
I have already given you a peek show before but the front does
look good.  The t-shirt side is nice, but I managed to get it off
centered.  I had readjusted several times so this is what it is.  I am
going to tell her the truth - It is all about artistic license!  ha-ha-ho-ho

This is one of the quilts I finished for the
grandkid's bedroom.  Now we need to get
the second set of bunks set up.

This is the back of the same quilt.  Love to play with stars and loops.

 Life is GOOD!

January 25: Still Having a Camera Problem, and Other Thoughts

After spending the day sanding and sanding and then doing more sanding, I thought I would do a few photos to share.  Software did not install correctly and I will need to figure out that issue.  Sorry about that!

A lady came to the shop this afternoon, specifically to purchase the large ruler rack we make.  She ended up ordering a custom cutting table with shelves and doors along with a small two drawer end table.  Feels good!

Isabella's quilt was quilted this morning before I went to the shop to sand my fingers to the bone.  The plan is to trim it and attach the binding right after dinner and then start the hand sewing.  I am hoping it turns out as good as I am thinking it will.  Using 2 quilt tops to make the front and the back is always a bit of a challenge.  Now I have even more reasons to just kick back and watch a movie while I bind.  Right?

Tomorrow Brianna is coming over to refresh her sewing skills and start the cousin quilt for Jakob.  He has arrived, so the quilt needs to be created, quilted, and mailed. 

Well, there will be time later tonight to look at the camera issue, so I will try to get some photos out to all of you soon.

We have been very busy, but I love doing it all.  Life is GOOD!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

January 24: Camera Died, Maybe That is the Magic

Last night, Kevin was helping me out by taking a couple of photos for me.  He got the shots, but then the sawdust on his hands made himlose his grip.  =0(

I was guessing that it did not really matter too much, but I purchased another camera tonight.  Since I am doing homework, I am using my school laptop, so I do not have any personally photos, but I can upload from the computer.  The photo upload button is FIXED!  Tomorrow I will find time to download some of my photos.  For now this will have to do.  I took it with webcam.  This is the quilt that I am putting together from dad's quilted blocks.  This is a call for great rejoicing!

I am starting to really understand something about writing HTML code. Today I wrote a code to create 3 tables and a calender.  This is something we will be using in the webpages we are building for our class.  I can see several applications for our upcoming business website.  I am really learning a lot of technology this semester.  It is SO COOL!!!!

Well, I need to finish one more piece of Facebook research and then I am going to do some more on Dad's quilt blocks.

Life is GOOD!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

January 22: Wow - No Homework and It Is Tuesday

Last semester, by Tuesday I felt completely swamped and did not feel caught up until Friday or Saturday.  This feels good!

I did work in the shop most of yesterday, and also picked out every bit of quilting in Isabella's quilt.  Both are impressive enough for me to want to rest on my laurels, but instead, I did some general office work, and put together 4 of my FIL quilted blocks.  Surprisingly pleased about how they look.  Also gives me handwork to do if I choose to watch a movie in the evening.

When I was a young kid, my father had the task of running the navy bean soup through the colander, which helped to thicken the whole thing.  I loved watching the bean goo push out the perforated holes as he turned the pistol around the inside edges of the colander.  It seemed like a science experiment.   He might have made the soup as well, but I don't think he was a domestic type.  I found a packet for making this type of soup, so guess what is in the crockpot for supper, tonight.  If it works, it will become a favorite.  The guys love any soup, but oyster, but I am a little more selective of which ones I eat.

Kevin and I have been sending out a Christmas newsletter for years.  It is something that started as a bit of a joke, but it is something that we have come to enjoy creating.  Today in my advanced applications class we started a unit on designing newsletters.  Can't wait to use these skills for our next letter or maybe even for the business.  Never knew I could do so many things with this program.  



Still have not seen a fix for my photo download, but...................

Life is GOOD!

Monday, January 21, 2013

January 21: Note to Self

Some things are great investments just because; while others are good investments----PERIOD! 

The other day I decided to try out a new carving glove made of Kevlar.  I have other work gloves but I am planning to try some figure carving so they seemed like a practical investment.  Today I cleared off my carving bench and worked on some "Seeds of Hope"  where I hand carve a heart in the center are of a bean shape.  Then I sand and sand to create a very smooth surface.  I use both sand paper with elbow grease and power tools.  I was using my Dremel flex shaft attachment to round over the outside edges of the seed.  Not an issue.  All was going well.  Then I gently bumped the spinning bit into the glove which is a bit to big for my small hand.  The Kevlar stopped the spinning bit cold - ruined the attachment, but not a nick on me!  When on sanding with other power sanders and such, but I am thinking it could have been a serious injury if it had been my skin and not the glove that was involved

Note to self:  Kevlar glove works great, but need to find a bit smaller one so there will not be no repeat performance.

Have all 10 fingers!  Life is GOOD!

January 21: Quick Check In

This is a free day in a sense.  My classes were both canceled because the instructor is out of town.  That means I have at least 7 hours that were not originally mine to use for other stuff.  I am waiting a short time until my hair is completely dry and then heading out in the chilly morning to work down in the shop.  Plan to be down there all morning and then spend the time needed to finish removing the quilting stitches that went beserk last week. 

Busy day, but I get to spend a good chunk of it with Kevin, so there will be no complaining from me.

Life is GOOD!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

January 20: Another Sad Event

Late last night, my dear friend Connie's husband passed away after a long struggle with cancer. Bob was one of the instructors and founders of the Vermont Woodworking School.  Although I did not know Bob as well as I would have liked, during the time that Kevin and I knew him, I came to greatly admire his talent, patience and ability to explain woodworking so that even I, the total novice, could appreciate what he was saying. 

If there is a woodworking school in Heaven, Bob will find a way to be involved!  Can't you imagine the conversations that could be had with the "Carpenter's Son"?

Life is sometimes hard to understand, but it is still GOOD!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Jamuary 19: Life

We ventured out to find Kevin the ammo he needs for his shooting match today.  Seems that everyone that owns a gun is also looking for this particular type.  There was nothing on the shelves at Scheel's or Cabela's -- not one box.  Those are the largest stores we tried.  Seems the smaller stores have been out since the government started the new conversation about gun control. 

Never though this topic would appear in my blog, but I am going to share just a little of my thinking.  It appears that the bad behavior of a few has once again caused those that abide by our laws to pay the price.  I am not a strong advocate of everyone being able to have a gun, but I am not opposed to those that are responsible and law abiding having them.  I would not even object to mandatory redoing of  gun ownership checks (Which would still only get the responses of those that are not planning harm to others, but it would be a start.)   I am not opposed to texting, cell phone use, or mascara either, but I can tell you that I am opposed to doing any of those things while driving a car, truck, or any other motor vehicle of any type.  This is the same feeling about the ownership and use of guns -  there is a time and a place for each of these, but ........  Just so you know, I feel the same way about computers and social media - used responsibly they are beneficial, but other use their words to do harm.

While chatting with a young man, in his 30s from another country the other day, we talked about hatred and angry.  He was very insightful about it.  The conversation concluded with him saying that these things are internalized when others with a presumed sense of authority continually espouse the kind of talk and actions that they want others to accept.  They twist various Bible or Koran scriptures, or they make claims that what they teach is from these sources when these words and concepts can not be found in an line of text.  He said the best defense against all of this is education -  LEARNING to READ and THINK for YOURSELF.  It was a very powerful discussion.

Saw a sign the other day and am truly considering hanging it somewhere for foolish people to see.  It simple says:

Bring Back Common Sense
Yes, I am a conservative.  I also believe that there should be another sign that says:
If your intention is to harm others, you MAY NOT purchase, borrow, or steal  a CAR, a GUN, or ANY OTHER ITEM that can help you to complete your dreadful plan.
I also try to practice my faith and am willing to see your point of view and help you if  you are willing to also help yourself.  Jesus said we are to love our neighbors as ourselves, but if we do not love ourselves how can we love others.  The third sign would say:
If something is going wrong in your life, seek help before you harm yourself or others.  Feel free to shout for help until someone finally offers you help, but do no physical harm in your attempt to be heard.  Harming others will not make anyone feel better or more compassionate about your situation. Don't let your actions destroy the peace and safety of others.

If I have offended you, let me know why.  To me this is my version of common sense and living my faith.  Everything is about the choices we make in how to live our lives.

Life is GOOD!

January 19: Still Waiting for the Photo Fix

Just checked and am at least able to report that the help desk is trying to fix the issue of uploading my photos.  don't really have time to do a change over to another blog right now, so I ma going to hold out for another week.

Friday, January 18, 2013

January 18: Day of Errands

We have a few errands to run, so the morning will be used up before I know it.  Then after lunch, I have to pick up my school laptop and make sure that the re-imaging has not made it impossible for me to complete my other homework.  That means that the early afternoon is pretty much used up, as well.  The consolation in all of this is that I don't have classes again until Tuesday.  My Monday classes are cancelled because my instructor will not be available. 

Although Friday is technically my office day for the week, I am going to have it be on Saturday because Kevin will be gone for most of it.  We will spend the rest of this afternoon working in the shop.  Life is as busy as always, but I think a routine is starting to develop and making adaptations to it seem to be acceptable for me.

Where will quilting fit in?  I am going to close the office door when I leave this morning and not come back up here until tomorrow morning.  I am going to prepare some of Dad's blocks for handwork before dinner, and spend the evening watching some movie and stitching.  Sounds delightful to me!!!

Life is GOOD!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

January 16: Where Will All of This Lead?

Wow!  This semester is so full of information, ideas, and truly exciting thoughts.  Kevin and I are going to make this business into what we have envisioned, but we are learning that it takes a lot more work to plan and develop that we had anticipated.  Maybe I really need a 92 hour day with only 8 hours of sleep required.  I am loving it, but I really do need to sort out the priorities.  Nay, I need the 92 hours!!!

I spent 2 hours reading a magazine with some fantastic ideas about building, managing, and doing what is needed to make a woodworking business successful.  Sent my reply card in for a subscription.  I am going to implement a couple of the ideas today.  Others are things that we as partners are going to have to formulate and standardize, but what a great source of practical working knowledge.

I am also committed to changing this blog over to a different provider.  I am thinking that it will happen this weekend, along with starting a business blog within the next month.  I am going to do some linking of the two so that I can separate the personal from the other, but both will still leak into each other, because that is what I do.


My FIL is really excited about my plan for this quilted block quilt, but maybe he is excited just because he is seeing me make a bit of progress each day.  Last night he was so inspired that he decided to purchase more fabric today to work on another set of blocks.  These will take more time, so I can pace myself and still convince him that I am trying to play fair.  hee hee

Met with the contractor to settle our bill for the addition.  Pleasantly pleased that he managed to say within his estimated bid.

Life is GOOD!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

January 15: Wow! Plus

Okay, I did join Facebook for school, but I am keeping that account just for school.  I also have a started a personal account, not to share with everyone, but so I can just see how it works on that side.  My concern is genuine in that I spent 90 minutes on it last night just looking, responding, and also chatting with one of my very best friends.  I do not have that much time, but according to Socialnomics once I gain a better understanding of it all, it is supposed to save me time.  Wonder how that is going to work out?????

My first chat did reap benefits thought.  As I blogged about yesterday, I am trying to figure out the best way to work with the quilted blocks that my FIL made.  Deb suggested that I do something like crazy quilting stitches.  That inspired me to get off the computer and check out that idea and one I had while chatting.  Dad vetoed the crazy quilting stitches because the style of his blocks.  After having made a visual, I was in complete agreement.  What we decided we like was a plain version, but how I achieved it was the fun part. 

I sewed one side of the block and the batting together with a 3/8' seam.  Then I laid it out and smoothed the opposite side fabric of one block over the seam and then folded the other block's edge to made a 3/8' fold.  I then used my hand binding skills and made a very tidy seam.  I left 3/8" at the top and the bottom of the hand stitched seam so that I can add the other rows.  Dad loves it and I can do a few at a time while we visit in the evening or when we are driving places, so it is a great solution.  Some day, when I get back the photo ability or switch to Word Press, you will actually be able to see how it works out.


Best intentions of mice and men (and WOMEN) would be that I could report that I rode the bike as planned last night, but I allowed myself to get sucked into the Facebook thing and then I was inspired to try my quilt idea.  I want to do it all, but my body wants the exercise, too.  The "freshman 15" and all the problems with my toe and my uncontrolled taste buds over the holiday season are making my body scream even louder.  Got to be more firm with myself on the exercise piece!


Monday, January 14, 2013

January 14: Not a Cold, so.......Plus a Quilting Question

Well, I am guessing that I must have had some little tickle of allergic proportions yesterday.  Today I am sporting just a bit of the sneezing aspect.  Still, not going to lean over and pick out that quilting yet today.  Hate the idea of the headache that would probably develop.

Quilters: What is your favorite method of putting together pre-quilted blocks? Dad did a set of 16 blocks on his embroidery machine and now it is my turn to transform them into a small 40x40 quilt with no borders. HELP, I want an fast way, but I don't really want to just machine stitch them together.

Wow, what a different a week makes.  Looked back to see what I said I was planning to do about my courses.  First I was planning to hold the line at 12 credits, then I was able to get into a newly formed section of a course I really wanted.  Faced the dilemma of what one to drop or if I should keep them all.  Went to class on Friday and found out that the one instructor I really wanted for a class was being moved to teach some other sections, so I have gone back to my original plan of 12 credits.  All of them are very computer - hands-on.
  • InDesign
  • Web Design
  • Social Media in Marketing
  • Advanced Microcomputer Applications
Each and every one of these classes will challenge me simply because there is so much that I have neglected to learn about computers over the years, but I am already feeling more liberated about what I am doing.  This is exciting stuff for a 59 1/2 year old.

Today, in InDesign, we made a snowman, a tic-tac-toe game, a scary block man, 3 differently outlined blocks, and a text message in red with a black outline.  I think I will hang it on my frig or send copies to my grandkids for their frigs.  As simplistic as it all sounds there was a great deal learned to accomplish this.

Then in Social Media in Marketing, we used Facebook to do research on two companies - a cupcake shop and a real estate one.  It was very interesting to experiment, but there was a bit of a challenge when we were then supposed to post a snippet of our post to the class forum for grading purposes.  Mac users seemed to have easiest time of it, but we PC users are a determined lot and found our way into the game, as well.

Still very unsure about getting too involved in a personal Facebook account, but I may do it just so I can learn a few more of the ins and outs.  For now, I am sticking with the class group portion and will do some more thinking about this over the next week.

I did get some walking in today.  Had to change it up because of all the scheduling changes I was making and the fact that the color copiers were not working well for making my portfolio copies for class, but believe me, the stairs factored in much more than I expected.  My laps were more like doing a figure 8 repeatedly on the stairs.  I did get in the four full laps but added about 8 extra sets of the steps (two flights in each set).  That going up is a little tough on my old knees.  The bike has not been used yet because of the schedule, but I will give myself a little more time to let dinner settle and then I will do the 10 miles.  I really want this to be a real routine for me.

Life is GOOD!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

January 12: How Can This Be?

Had my flue shot and am not concerned that I have it, but it appears that I have the start of a cold.  Guess it is to be expected since I hang around the college so many hours of the day.  Runny nose is not the biggest issue; it is the sneezing and the head rushes that go with them.

Maybe I am just allergic to ripping out quilting stitches.  Just wanted to actually quilt Isabella's quilt once it was loaded last night, so I jumped in without testing the tension.  Fortunately, I only have ONE pass to rip out.  The back is covered with eyelashes and that is just not a good look.  Since they are eyelashes, they are coming out more quickly -  all that extra thread.  Don't think I will be doing it this morning, though because dripping would then have to be dealt with.

Even so......................Life is GOOD!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

January 12: Quilted and Going to Work in the Shop

Finished both quilt tops + borders for Isabella's quilt this morning while taking care of the laundry.  The challenge of this quilt is that is really 2 quilts.  I put borders on both sides to help make them size correctly.  I also made the back quilt border about 3" wider all around.  If I am careful, it should center pretty well.  I want to quilt it today, but I am a bit too nervous to do it with only a couple of hours left this afternoon, so I will get it loaded this evening and then give it the right amount of time tomorrow.  Should be working on the binding this week in the evenings.

Tomorrow I will probably also serge 6 pillow cases so that they can be mailed with another package on Monday or Tuesday.

Kevin was gone all morning, but he is just getting back and we will be working in the shop until supper.  I have comfort crosses calling me, and he has a huge storage unit that is begging to be finished.  Before the afternoon is over, I also have to stain another 3-tiered quilt rack to be delivered sometime this week.  Life is not dull.

Life is GOOD!

Friday, January 11, 2013

January 11: Topic is School Happenings, Plus......

Went to class today with my favorite teacher and found out that he is being reshuffled to be able to teach at least one additional class.  Sad that he won't be teaching this course because I enjoy his style, but this change is what has made it possible for me to take my InDesign class.  I am certain I will adapt and there will be other chances to take classes with him.

I have promised myself that school will not rule my world this semester.  Kevin thinks it is already winning, but I told him what I was doing today was researching information for our business.  For extra-curricular reading I am diving head-first into a fascinating book called Socialnomics.  It is about the role or many roles of social media in the world today and in the future.  (Back when I was teaching math I loved to browse math books, so............)

Reporting in that I also managed to walk a little more in the afternoon and then did 10 miles on my bike before supper, yesterday.  Today I walked about 2.5 miles and plan to ride the bike shortly.

I am trying hard to not let studying take away everything else, so last night I worked on Isabella's quilt and played a little with Dad's newest project idea.  Today I went to the fabric store to purchase fabric for cuffs on some pillow cases, and the fabric is washing even as I type.

For now, I need to get back to my office work, but tomorrow is still scheduled to be all about the quilt studio, except for a couple of hours to be spent on my comfort cross shaping, sanding and finishings.  Life is all about choices, and I sure am lucky to have so many interesting things to chose.

Life is GOOD!


January 11: Happy Birthday,Kevin

Today is my husband and best friend's birthday.  Birthdays at our house always include ice cream, but on my husband's birthday there is the addition of angel food cake.  For a chocolate lover it has always struck me odd, but I bake it because it is what he wants.  I am actually glad there is no way to download a photo today because I hurried removing it from the pan because we were going out for lunch.  Cake still spells great, but it resembles a white version of the sorting hat in Harry Potter.  Told him he could have do-overs, but it does not seem to bother him.

Supper will be homemade egg noodles made by his dad and my homemade chicken soup.  Simple but what the guy ordered.  He is just so easy-going and down-to-earth.  Got to love him!!!!

Life is GOOD!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

January 10: DO I Sound Smarter or AT LEAST Better Informed?

Walked my laps and even walked outside for a short time.  It is gorgeous out there!  30+ degrees!

Today I have learned so much about html and how to write code.  Can I do much with it?  Well I am not trying it on anything you can see yet, but it is an exciting adventure.

Also am on FACEBOOK, but only for a class at the moment so I will not be friending anyone but my teacher and classmates.  Really don't have lots of time for chatting during the day, so it is best that I do not attempt it.  I see my classmates sucking in all the time and missing the discussion.  I don't multi-task all that well!  I can have several quilt projects going at a time, but I still only work on one at a time.

In Advanced Micro Computer Applications we are doing all the pieces to creating form letters, mail merge, and creating directories.  This is the SECOND chapter and the second class period.  WOWZER, WOOZER!

I did decide to take all 5 classes.  Kevin and I talked a long time and figured that I could take more now and a lighter load in the fall when we are hopefully going to be doing more shows and also increasing other types of business.

For those of you that think I will lose my way to quilting and carving.  Don't worry.  Tonight is scheduled for quilting and more quilting.  Tomorrow is Kevin's birthday, so I will be simply doing whatever he chooses.  On Saturday, all but 2 hours in the afternoon will also be dedicated to quilting.

Sunday is shop time.  I will help with some of Kevin's tasks and then I will be shaping more of my comfort crosses.  Have many basically formed, but now the artistry begins.  That is the part I really enjoy, but using power tools is becoming one of the things I find truly relaxing and creative it its own way.

Life is GOOD!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

January 9: The Photo Part Is Making Me Mad!

I have made a few more inquires but still can't post my own photos!  Anyone else have this issue?

Once again I have a couple of worthwhile photos but no way to share.  I will keep taking photos and one day you will be overwhelmed by what I have. SMILE!

Did my 10 miles on the bike and did 4 laps which count as 8 if you count both floors separately.  Several asked how my toe is handling this.  The answer is "What toe?  All is wonderful and I am still sweating as I type.  Maybe it will counteract the fact that Dad tempted me with a new batch of donuts when I arrived home from school???  (I am a sucker who can't resist his excitement and seem to lack the ability to say "No, thank you!"  The darn things are tasty, but fortunately they are small.)

I am faced with a dilemma.  I love being a student and am not dropping out.  However, today a new on-campus section of InDesign opened up and I have to decide by tomorrow whether to take it.  That answer is DEFINITELY YES, but the problem comes with whether to keep all the other classes that I already love or drop my microcomputer class.  If I take the 12, I have more time for other things this Spring, but then classes end May 2, so as a South Dakotan I know it might well still feel like winter up until then.  If I take the 15 credits now, and then take a couple of easier courses online this summer, I could take just 12 next fall and be almost completely finished with the degree and have time for shows, as well.  If I hated being a student it would be an easy decision, but I love all of it.  What is a girl to do?????

Baked a white cake with homemade chocolate frosting for Riley's b-day.  It is late but it will be delivered tonight.  =0)

Life is GOOD!

January 9: Third Class and Counting

Had Business Law at 8:00.  I am really looking forward to this one.  The reading of the first chapter is completed and I have had to consider my own beliefs about ethics and my thoughts on social responsibility.  Hope my classmates are up for some great discussions!

My goals for today
  • complete all current assignments,
  • do a little reading ahead,
  • go home and work on Isabella's quilt.  (Would also love to start some of the other quilts in my head, but I will have to pace myself.)

Still waiting to find a fix for the picture issue.  Might have to look at a different blog option just for the photos.  Deb needs photos and I love to share when I can.

Life is GOOD!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

January 8: Exercise

Just reporting that I did two laps around the building where I have my classes - two x two because I did both floors.  Also rode the bike for 10 miles.

Life is GOOD!

January 8: How are things going?

Let me get this out of the way upfront: With the exception of still not being able to upload my personal photos to the blog, all is going well.  I have jumped through all the hoops but have not found a fix, YET!

* * * * * * * * * *

Today is the first day of classes.  I have had my first 'Advanced Microcomputer Applications for Business' class.  I think it will be a favorite, but the month we are doing Access, I may have to rethink my comments.  lol  Right after class, I have several hours that I can spend doing the homework and reworking the parts that are more challenging.  I am already seeing a lot of applications for our business and for so many other things.

I have 'Web Design' later today.  That one is much needed for the business, so I want to get as much out of it as I can.  I am thinking it will get a great deal of my attention as I learn the software and also try to build our business website.

Tomorrow I have 'Business Law' which will be the one with the most reading and collaboration, but I really like this instructor, so that will make it a favorite even with all the other pieces.

Later in the day, I am taking 'Social Media' and hope to learn how to use it to promote the business and inspire customer trust and loyalty.  Don't know much about Facebook, Twitter, Wikis, Micro blogs, etc.  However, as with the other courses, I will beat my head against the wall to knock it all in and probably have a great time doing it.  (I love learning!)

* * * * * *

Beyond school, I am currently involved in doing HUGE AMOUNTS of paperwork for the business.  The last two days I have been working non-stop on it.  I am not overwhelmed but I do realize that this year I will need to pay the accountant more than I will need to do in the future.  We will definitely not make a profit considering the costs of starting up, but we are starting to feel like we have at least something that can be grown.

Last night I watched an old movie, Miss Congeniality, and did more hand sewing on the binding of the red, white, and blue quilt.  Funny just how relaxing it is to just sit and stitch.  Isabella's quilt is still in process.  With classes starting, I will probably not do the actual quilting until Saturday, but this is how life is.  When it is done, Kevin and I will take a little trip to SDSU and deliver it to her along with lunch and ice cream at the best ice cream place in the world - SDSU's Dairy.

Another thing I am committing to for at least this month is exercising in some form every day.  I even put tennies in my bookbag so I can walk in the halls between my two classes.  My recumbent bike is back in place and the pull-in replacement has been ordered and should arrive in the next day or two.  Then I plan to ride it after class and before supper each day.  The goal in all of this is adding movement to my day.

My evenings are going to be a mix of working in the shop on whatever Kevin needs me to do, blogging, quilting and carving, along with hanging out with Kevin and his Dad.  Friday after my one early class, I will spend the full day in the office doing paperwork, designing ways to create more exposure for the business, and simply taking care of whatever business needs to be done.  The weekends are not going to be about school, but if we have projects to finish in the shop that will get my attention.  Otherwise, I am going to simply enjoy life - see family and friends, read books, quilt, blog, and just enjoy doing whatever comes my way.

All this being said, I am going to try very hard to live up to my higher expectations rather than just letting everything slide until I crash and burn trying to get caught up.  Life is about working hard, but it is also about enjoying those things you love.  Fortunately, we are living a life that is filled with the things we are passionate about, so lets see how I do with this schedule.


Life is GOOD!

January 8: Birthday Week

Happy Birthday, Becky ---Jan. 7

Happy Birthday, Riley ---Jan. 8


At some point this week, when your house has a few less germs, I will be delivering your white cake with chocolate frosting! 

Life is GOOD!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

January 5: Photos Can't Upload

Have a couple of great ones to share, but that feature has not worked since about 10:00 AM,  I will try again tomorrow.

January 5: This and That

Finally think the headache is almost gone, so I will be quilting today.  Did just a bit yesterday, including a short bit of binding.  May even post the finished tops at the end of the day???????????

Went grocery shopping this morning.  It is a longer evolution when Dad accompanies us, but he enjoys the outing.  I don't love writing the the check, ever.  $246 seems extreme but it will do for about 2 weeks.  Dad will invariably pick up treats and such during the week, but that is not part of the regular bill.

Read the first book in the newest Debbie Macomber series.  Love to just kick back and read for fun occasionally and my head was not into anything else.  She is one of my favorite lite reading authors

Played Angry Birds Christmas version but can't seem to beat the level..Maybe I will do better without a headache.  I will check it out when I take a sewing break.

Life is GOOD!  Without any headache it would be a bit better!

Friday, January 4, 2013

January 4: Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday...

Counting down the free time until classes begin on Tuesday.  I have not accomplished all that I had planned because of my sinus headache, other things that cropped up, and ......and.......and.......  But, today I have plans that should be accomplished without too much difficulty.  Sun is shining and the sky is blue -  love how that makes me feel.

  1. Bank
  2. Post Office
  3. Piecing Isabella's quilt
  4. Skpye with Dean, Bryson, and Anna
  5. Maybe grocery shopping later in the day, but that is not on the priority list

Life is GOOD!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

January 3: A Tribute to a DEAR FRIEND

Rebecca came into my life when we moved to Tennessee.  At first, she was just a colleague at school, but then we found that we made each other laugh, cry, and simply enjoyed time spent together.  I taught her to quilt, and she taught me to be tolerate of everyone that was different from me.

We had wacky adventures going to Jackson to take a quilt class.  We went to tea and explored antiques.  We sat in her office and she fed me chocolate and let me rake her zen garden more times than I can count.  We talked about everything and nothing.  I am pretty certain she is the only guidance counselor I would have sent my own kids to see.  She was just so special and the students responded to her calm Southern charm.

One day she thought she was having a heart attack.  Turns out that she just forgot to take off her seatbelt.  I made her a teddy bear with a seatbelt strapped to a board to help commemorate that piece of silliness.  We laughed about that every time we talked!!!  There was also the time that she came over after church to have me quilt a special little quilt for a church member.  She really shocked us by driving into the wall of the garage,  damaged the house, but not her sense of calm! She received new business cards from me that suggested that she was opening a new business in demolition.

When I moved to Minnesota, she came to visit and met a number of my Texas friends.  That was a week of laughter and friendship like I never experienced before.  She just made us all feel so good with her silliness, make that craziness, followed up with her Southern ways of calmness and caring.

She made another visit to Minnesota and met most of my family.  She loved the grandkids and gave them little ponies that she tried to convince them could really eat and play.  They still ask about whether that only worked for Rebecca.  She fell in love with the family and always commented when Jamie sent her the monthly postcard.

When Rebecca retired from teaching and counseling, she planned to become a elder minister in her church.  She would have been good at it.  Crazy, compassionate, loving, and deeply faith filled .While I was in Vermont, we talked on the phone for hours and shared stories of school, quilting, family, what was next for each us. and other plan silliness. We also shared our faith and lifted each other up.

When she found out we were moving to South Dakota we started planning for another adventure in South Dakota.  That will never happen, now.  Rebecca was killed in an automobile accident.  The world has been deprived of a gracious and caring woman, but Heaven has gained a wonderful soul.

I will miss you sweet friend, but someday we will be together again.  I love you!

Life is GOOD, but there are parts that we can't understand, yet!

January 3: Comfort Quilt Mailed

My daughter's friend is going through radiation treatments, so the quilt I posted yesterday has already been mailed out to provide her with a little comfort.

The rest of the day was not nearly as productive.  I had and still have a sinus headache.  It seems a bit better today, but time will tell.  I still have hopes of accomplishing the things on my list, but a nap is probably part of the plan, as well.  I know I will work on a binding because that is mindless and relaxing, but Isabella's quilt is still waiting and that will take a little thought just to keep it all in order and such.

Hope all of you are trying to have a great day.  The effort to do that always seems to inspire me a little more.

Life is GOOD!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

January 2: A Finish and A Binding

Do you remember my experiments in cutting smaller until you have something you like?  This braid is finally completed.

Now I am working on the bind for a red, white, and blue twin-size for one of the bunkbeds in the grandkids room.  Planned to work on Isabella's quilt today, but I have a miserable-can't-concentrate-on-measurement headache so it is not going to happen.  I am just going to do some paperwork(more filing), and then chill with the binding.  Tomorrow promises to be a great day for putting the top together.
LIfe is GOOD, even with this headache!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

January 1: Happy Beginning of 2013!

Although Dad claimed he would not want to eat today due to over indulging last night on cheese, summer sausage, crackers, potato chips, onion dip, and 2 bottles of lemonade (all of which he bought for ringing in the New Year), he was ready for french toast (courtesy of Kevin's cooking) and then.......................

Dad took out his newest kitchen toy and made mini-doughnuts.  Hope this is not a sign of temptations throughout the year.  They are pretty darn yummy, though!

We rang in 2013 watching an old movie and then the dropping of the ball.  Kevin and I also sorted more papers, filed ideas for the business, and made some notes about where we plan to take the business this year.  The last 45 minutes of the old year, I worked on binding, but I still have 12" left to finish on the quilt.

Today's plans include the continuation of sorting and filing - using the Excel skills I learned last semester to create several more spreadsheets, etc.  I also plan to use the afternoon to try and finish putting the front and back tops of Isabella's quilt together so I can quilt int Wed or Thursday.  Not a busy day, just a laid back doing day.

School starts up on January 8th so I have time to do lots of things before then.  Once classes begin, I am going to try very hard to do all my homework and school projects between classes each day - 4 hours M-Thurs.  That should leave me time for working in the woodshop, quilting, blogging, and doing the business end of it all.  Before anyone starts to think that I am an overachiever, I am doing all of this because I love to do different things (passionate about them, even) and have to find a way to fit them all into a 24 hour day that uses 8 hours for sleeping and a couple more hours for cooking, cleaning, laundry, sometimes Skpying, and driving from Point A to Point B.  lol

Life is GOOD!