Sunday, February 26, 2012

One Week and Counting

So.... the final week before the half marathon. I ran 7.5 today and have increased the odd interval to 2:1 from 1:1 and guess what! My feet don't hurt as much as they used to.

Now my knees are killing me. When did this happen????? My left knee especially and for te first 4 miles my right ankle felt like I had been sitting on it for hours and had a kink in it I could not shake. Eventually all the bones and muscles stopped complaining and by the time I hit 6 miles, I felt fine.

We check in on Saturday and get our numbers. The "race" begins at 7:oo am Sunday morning. We figure it will take approximately 3 hours 20 minutes to finish. I wrote the word in scary quotes because I don't see it as a much a race as an event for me. My goal is finishing upright and with the minimum amount of pain. Oh and under 4 hours. Even if I had to walk the final miles I can do this now.

Still, no weight has left the carcass.... muscles are more evident but the pudgy middle remains. Ah age. You are so cruel.

I made a sample of a Lone Star for an up-coming class at the shop.

This is all I intend to do as a sample but I will ring the entire quilt with more stars around the perimeter and make it larger. So much so I might not be able to quilt it myself. That's okay..... there are so many splendid machine quilters in this area, I will hire one to the job for me. This is a quilt I want to keep for our bed (king) so size is an issue. The fabric here is mostly from Kathy Brown's new Abigail line. Very talented artist just over in Baton Rouge.

I have the Seasoned Quilter on the machine right now and will go finish her up this evening.

I got a little depressed this morning while searching for something in the closet where the quilts hang, waiting for quilting. Depressed because of all the unquilted tops, lined up and stagnant. There are so many more in the works as well that will soon end up that black hole. And so many more I thought I wanted to make but it is getting ridiculous now.

There are 6 huge quilts in there, all identical except the fabric selection, that are making me really crazy. I was hoping to have them done LAST YEAR!!!!!! Ha! Fat chance. They DID make a real dent in my stash but not enough of one to make me less crazed.

I have to get more finished before the growing season starts up. Once that happens, I will be so far behind. Yikes... jus thinking about it makes me nervous.

I better go talk to the chickens

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Man, Did It Rain Here Yesterday!

Which in truth is a very good thing. I only hope the deluge didn't wash away the carrot seeds we sowed Thursday. "We shall see what we shall see." ~Lucia Lucas

This, however, has curtailed my running schedule somewhat. Two weeks from today at approximately this hour of the morning, I'll be heading to the starting point of an adventure. With my cousin, who instigated this and my daughter who aides and abets me in all areas of nonsense, by my side (and possibly on either side dragging me across the finish line) I will plog 13.1 miles.

What else can I relate? Oh yes.... this! We started a new BOM at the shop
So cute!!!!

and I rushed home Thursday with my packet and feverishly began tracing the fusible and sorting out all the designated fabrics for the different pieces (oooh so exciting!!!!) and fused everything down. Did I say everything? Yes... I am very thorough. I began carefully cutting the pieces out and laying them down on the pattern. Oh it was looking so cute! That's when it dawned on me that I had fused all the pieces to the front of the fabrics, instead on the back. Where it is supposed to be fused.

Nobody tops me when it comes to stupid! So after Georgia rushed me new fabric and fusible, I concentrated and did it right the 2nd time. I have a good excuse for being distracted, though.

I love Netflix streaming and recently they uploaded the Frasier series. I never watched these back in the days it ran on TV so picture me in the workroom, crying with laughter while cutting out those shapes. This show was hilarious! It isn't often that I laugh out loud during comedies but lately this one and The Big Bang Theory have really gotten me roaring. Again, I am late to the party because anyone I ask if they'd seen these say, "Yes. Years ago!" Gee.....

Hey, ever get the Wolfermans English Muffins catalogue in the mail and wonder if they are worth trying out? The answer is a strong affirmative. They are wonderful! And so many varieties to choose from, you will be in a quandary as to which to try first or next. Have fun!

I can't believe how quickly this short month February is passing. Even with the leap day, it's gone fast. Mardi Gras is in two days and once more I will avoid all parades with reckless abandon. Instead, I shall hang out with the chickens and throw them stuff! They are as silly as any parade goer I've seen, except they don't lift their shirts. They surround me and jump up to grab stuff and cluck at me. Seriously, if they could talk, I swear it would be the line, "Throw me something!" And I do! And just like parade crowds, what I throw is never enough! So I throw more.....

Hey, that's how I roll.

If you do go parading, stay safe. If you don't, come join me on the Back Two.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Are We Too Far Gone?

Do you remember the hue and cry Nancy Reagan got when she rolled out that slogan "Just Say No"? If not, it was in reference to drug use as in Just Don't. Don't take drugs.

Oh she was such a hopeless square! AND rich! What did SHE know about ordinary average American's miserable lives back in the 80's? It was so bad back then, drugs were necessary to get through another day.

Now, you might be thinking that is going to be a rant about the alleged drug-induced death of Whitney Houston and Jamie Lee Curtis leaping on the back of the bandwagon to implore the Obama Administration to "do something" in regards to drug ADDICTION. Well, no, you are wrong.

I am about to RAIL, rant and vent about this! A State Inspector in N. Caroline has descended upon an Pre-K school to inspect, not the kitchen, not the Principal's desk or laptop for potential pornography, and not the Teacher's lounge for paraphenelia....... oh no, that is so yesterday.
Now they inspect lunch boxes of 4 year olds. Lunches brought from home, presumably packed by caring parental units to insure a nutritious meal for the child they love and care about and provide for.

And guess what? They are found to be lacking. Well, what a surprise.

The nutrition standards for pre-K lunch require milk, two servings of fruit or vegetable, bread or grains and a meat or meat alternative. The school didn’t receive a high grade from the January assessment because the home-made lunches didn’t meet those guidelines.

The inspector decided that this child was not getting her requirements and a tray was foisted upon her. This tray had chicken nuggets, milk, a fruit and a veg. The child then, traumatized, ate the nuggets. ONLY. Not the veg, not the sandwich, banana and the chips Mom packed, and not the school fruit.

I suppose you might be wondering, "what did mom pack that day?" A turkey and cheese sandwich, banana, apple juice and potato chips. What was missing? The milk.

At first the article picks up on the lack of veg, but later it is stated that milk was at issue. I believe cheese in the milk family. The apple juice and banana must surely make up for the '2 servings' of fruit or veg. And, oh by the way, isn't a potato chip a vegetable to start with?

WHAT AM I SAYING!? I'm as bad as they are!

What it is that makes this so NUTS is some person YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW is demanding YOUR child eat something you didn't give her! Where do we live again?

Apparently, you can't "Just Say No!" to the Government! Now, you have the First Lady's program of healthy eating and it's long incidious fingers in your child's stomach! Where oh where are the women marching in lock-step shouting "Keep Your Hands Off My CHILD'S Body!!!!!"

And the WASTE!!! That child didn't eat TWO meals, nevermind one vegeatable. Who, pray-tell, pays for this waste?

According to this article, the parents were charged and have stated they see no reason they should pay. Apparently the principal of this school has no knowledge of who pays for the meals it served that day, but sleep easy; they're looking into it!

Oh, and it also stated that the original inspector was wrong in the first place. What a shock! The lunch was completely fine. Uneaten, but perfectly fine.

I am so thankful my kids are grown. I fear for my future grandchildren if THIS is what they face. Are we too far gone down the road of Socialism that there is no turning back?

The Dept of Re-Education and the Food and Drug-Use Administration are out of control! I cannot believe this is what Michelle Obama envisioned when she started down this unhealthy path but it only takes one over-zealous bureaucrat to misplace his power and all heck breaks loose.

Take away recess and give the kid ritalin! That'll fix him! We used to have parallel uneven bars and the balance beam in junior high. I didn't LIKE them but we used them! I bet those haven't been seen since the 70's. Who could afford the insurance?

The saddest thing about this is the cowing of America. We have women missing air-flights because the TSA sends home the women Pat-Down experts and men are not allowed to frisk a woman. (yeah, right) We see elderly people manhandled and groped, items pilfered and weapons missed.

The children have no idea where Indonesia is but their self-esteem is high. They can't read the Bible or gather for prayer but they get to go on field-trip to a mosque to "learn about the architecture and observe a midday prayer service". Don't believe me?

The government disallows the sale or consumption of raw milk and you can't transport it across state lines. Milk! Heck you can't buy it in Louisiana. All because some people have gotten sick from bacterial infections. Hello? People get sick eating in a restaurant all the time and I don't see that shutting down the industry!

Once again, can we not be held responsible for anything in our lives anymore?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Visualizing the Possible

I ran the 10 miles again today , with three weeks to go to the Rock n Roll Half Marathon. By the ninth mile, my knees were hurting. Mmmmm that's a first.

At around mile 5, I was feeling very good, smooth running up and down small hills. I had to rub my feet a few times as well but I am really used to doing this now.

I changed my route up a little, too, running past horse farms on a very hilly lane. No traffic to speak of.

Now that I feel more confident I'll actually make it to 13.1, I am beginning to "visualize" crossing the finish line. I try to "see" it off in the distance as a beacon, a goal. I would like to cross it strong and running but we'll see how it goes.

Tomorow: sushi with Kathryn and Mitch and John.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Feeling Sorry*

....for anyone who is even remotely like me.

One drawback to waking early (besides the obvious) is my habit of websurfing quiltblogs. Once in the web, I stumble upon so many potentially fun "challenges" that I really really want to join in on. Take for example this one:

Vicki Welch is hosting a challenge that makes you really think about color and how it is used to a great advantage in quilt-making. She has a 12 month challenge that looks so interesting, I immediately went to the the drawers of fabric and started pulling out what I had to match. Except not much matched with precision. Oh I found some fabrics but they were already ear-marked for other projects and I can't go scalping from to give to another. Which obviously means I will have to buy fabrics if I want to take part in this. And that goes directly against the resolution to use the fabric I have on hand and stop squirreling away all this boltage!

So I am in the horns of a dilemma of sorts. And I feel sorry for anyone who does this to themselves as well.....

Do I give this one a pass NOW before I really get immersed or do I pull up the web-site at the shop and find a few fat quarters and proceed with reckless abandon? What to do, what to do.... it really looks interesting and educational.....

see? I take on too many projects. That really goes without saying and I ought to simplify to some degree.

I'll think about it. I mean, it's just one block, right? One each month.... and I am coming to the end of the Civil War Commemorative quilts.

HEY! I made Miss February...

And we received our shipment of avocado trees! However, it is supposed to freeze tonight so now the orchard is in the entry hall, naturally. Can you believe how crazy the winter has been? I just planted salad greens and English peas out the garden on Wednesday and the tomato seeds indoors and here we get a hard freeze? I thought for certain Spring came early and completely. Goes to show you!

I tried to make yogurt yesterday. Tried as in failed to make yogurt yesterday. Was the milk too hot when I added the yogurt? Did it get too cold? hmmm so I am going at it again this morning. This time I am incubating it in a crockpot on low setting. Perhaps that will keep it at a steady temp.

I used to make yogurt, in India. And we made paneer but I don't remember how. It was just something we did every other day when the milk wallah came up the stairs and sold milk straight from the buffalo. Unpastuerized so we did that first. Boil the milk for 20 minutes. Cool. Skim the cream off the top and make butter and ghee. But that was so long ago...

Have you tried the "greek" yogurt out there? It is much thicker and I really like it. But it is expensive and I had a quart of milk extra (I forgot I had one in the fridge and bought a second one) so instead of drinking more milk than I ought, I thought HEY make yogurt!

See? I just keep adding more things in my day! Crazy!

I have decided to enter two maybe three quilts in a regional quilt show.
Two are finished and the third on needs quilting but I have another to get on the big machine first. It is for a cousin and will be picked up in early March. I'll post a photo of it when it is done.

*I don't feel sorry in the poor poor pitiful me.... I feel sorry there aren't more hours in the day to do everything. There are just too many fun things to get involved with out there!!!