Saturday, January 16, 2010

Curing the January Blahs

For a long time there, I felt as if all my off days were committed far in advance: doctor's appointments, hair appointment, traveling to DD's house, work inservices, putting the tree up, buying and wrapping gifts, grocery shopping, cooking, etc, etc, etc. It seemed all my time was taken up with lots of have-tos and few want-tos.  It was starting to make me a little CRANKY.

Every other week I have a 4-night stretch off.  (For night-shift workers, this is equivilant to 3 full days).  Last weekend I really should have taken the Christmas tree down and put away all the decorations, but I had a mini-rebellion. Instead, I worked in the sewing room, clearing away the clutter, taking down the black Halloween curtains (!) and re-organizing a bit.  I have some dark blue-striped curtain panels that have been up in the room before, but the fact that they gapped when shut really bothered me. So I ripped out the side seams and sewed the pairs together.  Not very challenging or creative, but it got rid of one of those little things that bugged me.  And in the winter, the sun's path is low enough that, when it shines, it blinds me at the machine until after 11am. Not any more.  Now I can leave the curtains shut until I'm ready.

I even got my hot air balloons back up.

(And yes, that's STILL snow on the ground, 4 weeks later!)

I cleared stacks of books off my desk and sewing table.  These were bought at yard sales during the summer, in plans of reading while lying in the hammock.  Didn't happen, obviously.

And as much of a Stephen King fan as I've been for years, I have some old ones yet to read. Some are stacked beside the bed, and others stored in a box under the cutting table, out of sight, out of the way, but still accessible.

This book I won 2 years ago in a giveaway by Julie at Pragmatic Compendium.  I got about 2/3 of the way through, stopped to do my taxes, and just never finished.

I went through my 3-ring binders and culled out old patterns and pictures of quilts I no longer want to make.  In the top of the closet are standing organizers full of old quilt magazines.  Even though I've stopped subscribing to all but 3 magazines, I still have loads of magazines, and I could really use that room to store something else.  There's so much that can be found on the internet now, I have no problems going through all my old mags and cutting out the pictures and patterns I want to keep--and putting them in the binders to do later.

Also in the reorganizing (and I haven't gotten into the closet yet), I found several UFOs I'd forgotten about.

I cut 12 of these squares, in preparation for a child's quilt, but only cut 9 balloons. I think I was searching for a different fabric for the last 3 balloons, and I've decided to use this fabric:

The problem I'm running in to is, even though I haven't turned the edges of the applique under just yet, it's too
big for the square.

Even turned diagonally, it's too big.

I don't remember why that is.

So I'm thinking I'll either need to trim the balloons and baskets down, or add borders to the cloud squares and make them larger.
Or, I suppose I could sew the squares together with  sashing, and have the balloons overlap the sashings deliberately.
What do you think?  Any other ideas?

In the meantime, I re-discovered these king-sized pillow shams bought at a thrift shop a while back.  I'd already taken the seams apart, and laid out some of the pattern pieces for an apron.  I finished cutting, and then sewed them together.

It's not quilting, but it turned out just as pretty as I thought it would. And it cleared just a little more off my cutting table.

And this week?  Not much sewing has gone on, and the tree is down, but most of the decorations and lights still need to be packed away.  I'm a late convert to Ghost Whisperer, and have been catching up on dozens of old episodes, thanks to  ION television and the WE network. That's why there is no Saturday at the Movies this week--I haven't seen any movies in about 3 weeks!

I'm also now addicted to Farmville (thanks SO much, Mighty Mom).  Coming up is a make-up dentist appointment, a groomer's appointment for Tandi, and having my truck towed to the shop.  Despite trying to start it several times the last few weeks while it was surrounded by ice and snow, it has succumbed to the cold and only makes a forlorn clacking noise now.  I do believe that's the sound of money exiting my bank account.

Oh, but look what came in on Wednesday:, you rock! I don't have a specific project in mind, but I'm sure I can find something.

 I wish it were next weekend already.


AnnieO said...

Glad to see you're banishing the crankies by doing something creative! Love the apron and the balloon blocks. Sashing would be great I think. I've been trying to get into my sewing room regularly but it sure needs a cleanout too--I've only had a sewing room for five months--how did it get this way already?

Cathi said...

I love your balloon blocks. I think I'd be tempted to have the balloons floating rather haphazardly all over the background and sashing.

MightyMom said...

on point with borders is what I'd do. course that's cuz if I try to trim I'm mess em all up big time.

glad you're getting your space cleaned out love that apron! I love it when I dig out my machine by finishing the things I buried it with!

and I WARNED you about farmville!!!

Jean said...

It feels so good to go through things and sort, separate and finish, doesn't it? I have been sorting through fabrics too...and reorganizing some stuff.

Alycia said...

Holy Balloons - you were busy!! Feels good huh!

Anonymous said...

That apron's adorable!

So you haven't finished The Kite Runner? It's sooooo good. It's also out on dvd now. The book's better, of course. There's another book by that author called A Thousand Splendid Suns, and it's good, too.

Libby said...

*whew* You have got a lot on your plate . . . . but it sounds like you are coping just dandy *s* Cheerful projects like those balloons are sure to do just that.

Mary said...

Doesn't it feel good to have your sewing room straight? I know I enjoy working in mine more now.

I love the balloons - I'm sure any of your suggestions would work but I'd probably trim them down to fit the squares.

Karen said...

Oh I so have the January Blahs. I thought of a post with that title but was too blah to get to it ;)