Weekend Coffee Share: Weather Wonder Week

weekendcoffeeshareIf we were having coffee, I’m sure we’d have to give some mention to the awesome weather of the week. After missing autumn for the past six years while I was in Taiwan, I couldn’t have asked for a  better fall in general, but this last week in particular was beyond amazing. Here’s Logan from slightly before this week, but it’s just a glorious time of year.

19921_10156230937600037_4224726436927740609_nI’d tell you that I did make it to Lowe’s to pick up the paint chips I needed to get to work on my fabric selection for the mystery quilt that begins at the end of the month. I also picked up some quilt basting spray so that I can get Jack’s quilt layered and ready for quilting. I’ve never used quilting spray before, but I thought this would be a good time to try it. With my new “quilting project” schedule, it makes sense to streamline some aspects of it. Just because I learned how to do this before some of these aids came along doesn’t mean I have to keep doing it that way. In the meantime, here is a pic from my last mystery quilt challenge. It’s a little blurry, but it gives you an idea of how it’s working out. This is #3 in the quilting finish schedule I posted on Tuesday. This mystery quilt challenge was hosted by Aby, and you can check out her blog here.

quiltlyout (2)I’d tell you that my move to the house has been delayed, and I am staying at my parents’ house for another week or two. At the same time, I’m really here almost less than at any other time because of all the hours I’m out tutoring. Still, I’m chomping at the bit because I’d like to have some sense of being settled. Things at my parents’ house are becoming less organized, largely because I know the move is coming, and I work toward the move rather than toward creating more stability.

I’d tell you that my mother and I had an outing today after my Saturday morning tutoring session. We went to a church craft bazaar where she bought a few gifts for her great-grandchildren and a couple of lovely things for herself. Then we went off to Macy’s. I called Dad to see if he wanted to join us for dinner, and he preferred to take care of himself (and watch football). So my mother and I went to TGI Friday’s because she had always been curious about it, and it isn’t the kind of place my father would particularly be interested in. He takes my mother out quite often, but just not to some place like Fridays. I report the news, I don’t make sense of it.  🙂


Image courtesy of 89studio / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of 89studio / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I’d tell you that I found two new job openings in Iowa, so I’ll be sending out applications this week. Although things are picking up for me here in Michigan, it still ultimately looks like it would be good for Dave and me to reunite in Iowa rather than in Michigan, at least for a while. So we’ll see what happens.

I’d tell you that there are lots of odds and ends for me to deal with, and that I’ve made a list of them, so I can begin to schedule them in some kind of systematic way.

I’d tell you that with all these things going on, I’m going to have another cup. Then I need to get to it.  🙂

library coffee shop 004Why don’t you join us in a cup of coffee or other favorite beverage. You can find the link up at Diana’s blog, http://parttimemonster.com/2015/11/07/weekendcoffeeshare-in-which-allison-wins/

Have a good week!

My Answer to This Week’s “To Do or Not to Do Tuesday”

Since I started a new feature this past week, I decided that Friday was a good day to post the answer. That way when the decision is “to do,” I’ll have the weekend to jump in with both feet. And when the answer is “not to do,” I can use my weekend for things that are already on my “go ahead” list.


This one probably won’t be much of a surprised, but I’m going to be taking on the mystery quilt challenge. I first heard about it when I was reading a post about it on Mary’s blog.


I was immediately intrigued and posted a comment which began a brief but active conversation between us.

  • Deborah says:
  •  Deborah says:
    • Go get your paint chips!! I will pester you to keep on it! It is really a ton of fun. Do read through Bonnie’s full post before you start your fabric selections.

      So I went to read Bonnie’s post and made a list of the paint chips and the fabric measurements for each. This morning, I had a little bit of time between appointments, so I stopped at Lowe’s for paint chips, and later I will start the treasure hunt for the appropriate fabrics.

      easy angleI also have to pick up a couple of special rules for making angles. This part is quite exciting because the idea of learning a new technique will help me move ahead on my quilting. I like to do a lot of my own designing, but sometimes, I am a little shy about the triangles I use. I’m hopeful that an easier triangle construction process will motivate me to use more of them in my quilts.

      Of course, I will honor the schedule I posted in my Tuesday post. Jack’s quilt still is the priority. I will be getting his quilt sandwich put together this weekend, and hopefully start quilting. I want to get it done because I want to give it to him. But I also want to get it done and give it to him because I want to start posting pictures of how cute it is turning out. But it’s still in “surprise” mode, so I can’t post pictures yet. Soon!

      In the meantime, I’m off to scout out some fabric! I won’t buy a lot today, but it will be fun to play with the new color scheme between the rest of the errands and appointments I have today.

      The great thing about this thinking “process” is that it wasn’t really a matter of “deciding” to quilt. That decision has been made over and over in the past, and it’s never been a true decision. I can’t stay away from quilting even if I think I want to try.

Autumn Fun for Two Grandsons

two grandsonsFor those of you who haven’t been following me long, I have two grandsons, who both live in Michigan. Logan, who is 4 1/2, is the son of my daughter, Kate and her husband, Gabe. Jack is the new kid on the block, who is 8 weeks old. He is the son of my son, Tom and his wife, Megan. In the middle of October, the two of them got to meet for the first time. If you go by their facial expressions, I think it’s safe to say that Logan was a lot more excited about the meeting. It will be fun to see them together as Jack gets older; I’m sure they will have some exciting adventures together.

logan wedding shirtLogan has had some interesting adventures of his own lately. He has been in preschool for several weeks now. He especially likes riding the bus. He’s also had a field trip. Last week, he made use of a special t-shirt. That’s because everyone who attended by Doug and Jessica’s wedding last weekend got a customized t-shirt. Even though Logan was unable to attend the wedding, he was included in the t-shirt order. So when Kate brought Logan’s t-shirt home for him last weekend, Logan was able to put it to good use. It turns out that they were talking about the letter “D” in preschool that very week, so his new t-shirt with D + J on it made the perfect outfit for the day. The story of the t-shirt is pretty great, but I really just like the expression on his face. ❤

Fall is harvest season, and Logan understands that because his dad is a farmer, his dad works really long hours. Logan is at the age where he also wants to be a farmer when he grows up. He loves playing with his tractors and other farm implements.

logan leavesLogan has also been enjoying the autumn leaves and helping his Aunt Marilyn with the raking and gathering. Or at least he’s been having fun playing in the resulting piles.

As an aside, I’m really enjoying the turning of the leaves, as I’ve been away from the seasons for the six years that I was living in Taiwan. But seeing Logan in the pics below captures some of the moments I’ve been enjoying as I watch the colors of the season. And this picture of Logan captures those colors (and his sweet smile) very nicely.

Jack’s a little newer at this adventure stuff, but hey, he just had his first Halloween. A good holiday for adventure. And what did he dress up as? A “Jack” o-lantern.

Jack o lanternHowever, Jack is not really very happy about the other jack-o-lantern imitations. He hasn’t yet figured out that none of the others can compete with him. But check out this photo! I can’t help smiling every time I see it.

unhappy jack

Fall isn’t over, so I expect a few more grandson adventures to report throughout the next few weeks. I hope you have many good autumn adventures ahead of you.

If We Were Having Coffee: The Beginning of NaBloPoMo Edition

weekendcoffeeshareIf we were having coffee, I’d have to tell you that it’s been a rather unusual week. Mostly good, but very taxing.

I’d also tell you that my post today feels boring, even to me. I feel like I’ve just lost my luster for life and all things interesting. Not that I haven’t been involved in interesting things, but the landscape just seems a little dull at the moment.

I’d tell you that after a few weeks of trying to land a client through an online tutoring system, I ended up with not one, but two. And one of them led to another ongoing gig that wasn’t part of the online system. So I went from doing only my adjunct work to suddenly working an extra 17 hours this past week.

random numbersI’d tell you that I’ve found that I’m a real geek when it comes to helping people figure out how to use SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) and how to interpret their data. I mean this isn’t an entirely new discovery, but to work with someone over the phone for four hours over the course of two consecutive evenings really got me going. In fact, I had to rein it in so I didn’t get totally exhausted by my mental investment in the project. The client was thrilled and will be back in contact with me with a new data set in a few weeks.

I’d tell you that my other long-term tutoring project is working with a family with two children. Algebra, writing, and time management for the 7th grade boy and reading and math for a first grade girl. As we went through the week, the parents were willing to increase my hours (and days) to the extent I would be willing to take on more. I am currently figuring out how much I really am willing to do.

I’d tell you that I did manage to figure out what I’m doing for the back of Jack’s quilt. The quilt top is finished except for the final border, so now that I’ve solved the backing mystery, I am hoping to make some progress this week, and hopefully be ready to quilt next weekend. Unless I’m moving.

I’d tell you that the movers are scheduled to come on Thursday. Not to move my stuff, but to move the large things from the house I will be staying at to the owners’ new home. That means it may be possible for me to start moving some of the things from my parents’ house to the new location as early as next weekend. Nothing is really firm yet, but that’s the current status report. Within a couple of weeks, I may be posting from a new location.

nanopoblano2015lightI’d tell you that I’ve joined NanoPoblano, in which I will challenge myself (with a little help from the group to post every day in November). Check out the details at Rarasuar’s blog. This current post is my contribution for the first day of November. I am hopeful for the rest of the month, but I don’t kid myself: this will definitely be a challenge. At the same time, I’ve been wanting to do a month of daily posts for a while, so this seemed like a good time to join the crowd.  🙂

Thanks to Diana for hosting our coffee meet-up: Check it out at http://parttimemonster.com/2015/10/31/weekendcoffeeshare-this-is-halloween-please-dont-rain/