Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Another update on Sam's diet (#11)...

It's been 3 weeks since I last reported on Sam's weight.  In that time, I've weighed her 3 times.  The first two times, she weighed exactly the same.  (I'm always pleased when there's no weight gain.)

I weighed her again this morning - exactly 7 days since her last meeting with the scale.  After this one, I felt like a very bad mother.  No, she didn't gain any weight.  In fact, she lost 0.9 lbs!  I've read that cats shouldn't lose more than 0.2 lbs per week.  I've fed her the same amount of food that I usually do, the only difference is I haven't been sitting to watch her eat it.  The other cats no longer went after her food while I was there so I assumed that they also left her alone when I wasn't in the room.

Obviously I've been mistaken.  The little snots (aka - the other cats) must be bullying her and taking her food as soon as I'm out of sight.  Although Sam can be crabby with me, she won't stop the others from taking her food.  This also explains her extreme orneriness lately.  The poor thing must have been starving.  I'm back on patrol duty now though so I know she'll get all of her food. 

Now that she's down to 15 lbs (from a high of 18.1), you can really see the physical changes in her.  She has bags of skin that hang down.  It's particularly obvious on her elbows and makes her legs look so short.

I suppose she could benefit from a tummy tuck, but that's not going to happen.

I'm grateful that she's feeling a whole lot better now.  She can make jumps that she couldn't before and her joints don't make the same noises.  Still a little more ways to go though, but hopefully at a much slower pace.

So Sam's stats are now...
  • Starting Weight - 17.9 lbs
  • Target Weight - less than 14 lbs
  • Last Weigh-in - 15.9 lbs
  • Current Weight - 15.0 lbs
  • Net loss - 0.9 lbs
  • Total Weight Lost - 2.9 lbs
Until later...

Fear of the Lord is the foundation of wisdom. Knowledge of the Holy One results in good judgment. 
Proverbs 9:10 (NLT)

Monday, April 25, 2011

200 miles!

Another milestone today...

200 Miles on the Stationary Bike!
I hit 100 miles on my stationary bike last July after which I took a bit of a hiatus.  Most of this second 100 miles has happened in the last couple of months.  I wonder if I could possibly hit 300 by the end of the summer.  Perhaps...

Until later...

You have begun to live the new life, in which you are being made new and are becoming like the One who made you.”  
Colossians 3:10a (NCV)

Absolutely useless trivia...

As I was laying in bed the other night, I got to wondering what my pets would look like if they were human.  What I was really thinking was how vastly different my two cats, Moses and David, are in size and how that would translate to us.  So I went looking online to convert pet stats to humans and this is what I came up with...

Pet Stats
  • Moses (female cat) is 9.8 lbs and 6 years 8 months old
  • Jack (female cat) is 12.6 lbs and 10 years 7 months old
  • Sam (female cat) is 15.8 lbs and 10 years 7 months old
  • David (male cat) is 21.5 lbs and 2 years old
  • Gabriel (female dog) is 57.6 lbs and 4 years 11 months old

Comparable Human Stats
  • Moses is 98 lbs and 43.7 years old
  • Jack is 126 lbs and 59.3 years old
  • Sam is 158 lbs and 59.3 years old
  • David is 215 lbs and 25.2 years old
  • Gabriel is 36 years old  (I don't know what the correlation in her weight would be other than she's fat.)
There's no real use to this information, I just thought it was interesting.  So when I see Moses and David together now, I can picture them as a 98 lb female being stalked by a 215 lb male.  It gives me more sympathy for her.  Not that David wants to hurt her; he just likes to be around her.  On the other hand, she can't stand him.

By the way, I just told Mr. Quilting Bug how old Gabriel is compared to us and his reply was, "I don't like to think of her as being that old."  I kindly pointed out to him that I am currently 36 about to turn 37.  Hmmm.

Until later...

"Be angry and do not sin ..." 
 Ephesians 4:26 (ESV)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Stash Report Week #16...

April 16 - 22, 2011

A little bit of stuff to report this week.  All of it having to do with the retreat I'm leaving for on Wednesday.  I'm still in a mad dash to finish getting ready for the classes I'm going to teach as well as gathering everything I need to bring for the rest of the time.  Most of the fabric I purchased this week is earmarked for some games we'll be playing (Fat Quarter Bingo and Strip Poker - with 2.5" strips) as well as a swap and some fabric to make a rope bowl (this is a class I'll be taking).

Fabric for the games and swaps
Fabric for my rope bowl (Vintage Groove by Adorn It)
Of all the fabric I purchased, only 2 yards is making it's way into my stash.

As for what I've used this week, I've finished making the kits for the Chickadee class I'll be teaching.  Here are the fabrics I used for the kits...

Fabrics for Chickadee Kits
I purchased several of the fabrics, but most of them came from my stash.  I used a total of 4 yards for these.

Purchased-this-week: 2 yards
Used-this-week: 4 yards
Purchased-to-date: 77.25 yards
Used-to-date: 68.5 yards
Net used: -8.75 yards

I'll be making a trip to Mary Jo's while I'm away and I'm sure that will have some impact on next week's numbers.

Until later...

We love because He first loved us.  
1 John 4:19 (HCSB)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Class Sample...

I've been working hard on it and have finally managed to finish the sample for a class I'm teaching end of next week.  It's on Back-Basting Hand Applique, which is my preferred method for hand applique.  Here is a picture of the finished block..

Chickadee Class Sample
My original plan was to add a series of borders and make this into a small wall hanging.  However, I like how it turned out so much that I'm seriously thinking about creating additional bird blocks and making an entire quilt.  My husband has a bird watching book which would be very helpful in developing patterns.  Of course, my to-do list is pretty long right now so whatever I decide it will have to wait a while.

In other news, we tried taking the cone off Gabriel yesterday.  She'd been wearing it for 5 days straight.  However, as soon as she had access she went right for her toe and started licking.  So the cone is back on and we'll have to endure it for at least a couple more days.  I jokingly suggested she went after her toe just so we'd have to put the cone back on.  It's not slowing her down a bit and she may enjoy terrorizing the rest of the family with it.

Until later...

So then, we must pursue what promotes peace and what builds up one another.  
Romans 14:19 (HCSB)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Space planning...

In my last post, I shared some pictures of my sewing room.  Although I intend to keep the contents of all the shelving units the same, I am planning to move all of the furniture around.

Several years ago, I made myself a miniature model of my sewing room and the furniture in it.  It's perfectly to scale with 1" = 1'.  It made it so easy to come up with a space plan before having my husband and brother help with the heavy lifting.  I kept it after the last move, so I pulled it out again to play with.  This is the current layout of the room.

I was hoping to put down hard wood floors some years ago, but it was just too expensive to justify so I still have carpet in there.  I built a number of the model pieces using balsa wood, but towards the end I was getting tired and resorted to paper for the rest.  The big red box on the right is my quilting frame.

It's so easy to pick up the pieces and move them around, seeing what will work and what won't.  I know those doing the actual moving are grateful that I've figured it out ahead of time.

The only thing I don't have in here is the couch.  My  husband has told me that it is the one nonnegotiable feature to this room.  It was almost impossible to get in and he has no intention of ever removing it.  I suppose if we ever move, he'll probably chop it up into pieces to get it out.  Which would be a shame, because it's a super comfy sofa.

You can see that I even made up curtains and shades for the model.  Although I made that exact roman shade for the room, I never did get around to making the valance.  For this iteration, I'm going to removed the shade and put a frosted film on the window.  That will give me both light and privacy.  We did that in our master bathroom when we renovated it and it has worked out great.  And after all of the window film I installed last year in the house, I'm virtually a pro at it now.

I haven't really begun to play with the new layout.  I really want to finish going through everything in the room first.  Plus I'm going to be out of town at the end of the month and I'm still busy preparing for the classes I'm going to teach.  Perhaps I can really start tackling that aspect of it in May - along with a zillion other house projects.  My honey-do list is growing exponentially.

Until later...

My heart is confident in you, O God; my heart is confident. No wonder I can sing your praises! 
Psalm 57:7 (NLT)

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Stash Report Week #15 and updates on my sewing room...

April 9-15, 2011

Still not much happening on the sewing front.  Nothing in and nothing out this week.  So that takes care of the Stash Report portion of this blog post.  But I have made some good progress in organizing my sewing room.  Here are a few progress pictures...

I've asked my husband for a small flat panel TV for my birthday that will fit on top of the shelves.  Then I can move the large, bulky TV out of there.  It would be nice to have an internet enabled one so I can watch NetFlix and listen to Pandora on it.

Each of the black baskets here holds fat quarters that coordinate with the yardage beside it.  The clear containers with the white lids to the left of the TV hold my collection of 2.5" strips.  They're also organized by color and theme.

I love having it so organized now.  It's almost an OCD thing for me.  These baskets hold either pre-cuts (charm packs, FQ bundles, layer cakes and jelly rolls) or all of the fabric for a planned quilting project.  And see the black basket with the big dots on it?  That's where I'm getting my color scheme for the room.

More baskets hold additional projects and collections of fabric.

I need two more of the black mesh baskets to finish this corner out.  On the bottom row, there are 2 projects just waiting for their own basket.  I bought both the black cubes and the baskets from Target, but they were out of the mesh ones last time I went.  I think I've been buying them faster than they can restock them.

I'm more than halfway done with the organization and I've already gone through all of my fabric.  Fortunately I've been able to donate a lot of it to my mom as well as different people and organizations.  I didn't count what I gave away, but figure it's probably about 300 yards.  But it was fabric I don't think I would have used so it's found a better home.  I still need to go through a couple cabinets of notions, my quilting books and the stuff under my quilting frame.  Slowly but surely I'm getting there.  I also want to repaint all of the shelving units in here with white lacquer and the walls a gray/taupe color.  That will be a huge undertaking because there are 8 bookcases, an armoire, 2 sets of shelves with 9 cubbies and 6 sets of shelves with 6 cubbies.

I have a mental picture of how great it's going to look when I'm done.  I hope the reality matches up with my vision.  On another note, my dear husband is talking about moving again and is looking for land in the area to build a new house.  I'm open to the idea if we can find the perfect lot and house plan (1-story), but I'd also be quite happy to stay where we are.  Of course, I'm open to whatever plans God has for us even if it's something completely different from ours.

Until later...

You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.  
Jeremiah 29:13 (NIV)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

I'm finally done...

stitching all of the Winter Wonderland blocks!  I just put the final stitch in block #10 earlier tonight.

Last of the Winter Wonderland Blocks
This was one of the simplest blocks to stitch so I'm glad I saved it for last.  I'm like that.  I usually prefer to do the hard or time consuming task first and then reward myself with something fun or easy later.

Closeup of Block
The next step on this project is to cut all of the blocks down to size, sew them together, add a simple border and then stitch a fly stitch around each block using the same block perle cotton thread.  After that, I can actually start making the pieced stars that make up the outer border.

Here's a collage of all the blocks together...

All of the Winter Wonderland Blocks
In other news, Gabriel is still wearing her cone.  She's managed to knock it open a couple of times and start licking her injured toe.  Mr. Quilting Bug had to resort to duck taping it closed tonight.  She's getting around pretty well with it and has even figured out a way to chew on her deer antler while wearing it.  She looked so cute trying to carry it around that I tried hard to get a good picture, but she kept dropping it every 5 seconds.  This was the best I could do...

Gabriel with her deer antler
She loves chewing on these things and best of all, no animals were harmed for her to enjoy them.  You might have to go to a pet specialty store to find them, but I highly recommend the deer antlers as something for your dog to chew on.  They last an incredibly long time and they won't splinter like other bones.  They're also a renewable resource.

Until later...

How kind the LORD is! How good he is! So merciful, this God of ours! 
Psalm 116:5 (NLT)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Cone...

Last week Gabriel suffered an injury which necessitated a vet visit.  This happens to be the third time she's seen our vet this year and it's only April.  The first time was because she wouldn't stop licking/biting at a sensitive area.  We weren't sure if she had allergies, worms or an impacted hiney, so she was treated for all of them. 

The second time she saw the vet was for a teeth cleaning.  Although she's only four, her teeth were looking really rough and she had the beginnings of gingivitis.  Unfortunately, she was not blessed with good teeth.

Last Friday while out playing, she bent one of her toenails back to the quick.  The vet had to sedate her and pull the entire nail.  She's been on pain medication and an antibiotic ever since.  The first couple of days, she was really pitiful.  The morphine was wearing off and you could tell she just didn't feel good.  But when she started to perk back up, she also started licking her injured toe.  Incessantly.  Especially between the hours of 3 and 5 AM.  Every night.  All this licking has left her toe raw and exposed and looking like it was getting infected.  So yesterday I had to go in the attic to find something I hoped never to use again...

Gabriel with the cone
Although she looks pitiful in this picture, you shouldn't feel sorry for her.  Instead, you should pity the rest of us.  Because Gabriel doesn't care that she's wearing a big plastic cone on her head.  In fact, I think she relishes the power it gives her over everyone else.  She terrorizes the cats with it, chasing after them and scaring them.  They were afraid to come to bed last night.  She also rams it into everything - the walls, doors, furniture and especially the backs of our legs.  I know from past experience that both Mr. Quilting Bug and I will both have bruises there before it comes off.  And she has to wear it for the next 5 to 7 days, until her toe has healed sufficiently.

So if you don't hear from me, please know that I'm hiding out from my dog.

Until later...

How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can't even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me! 
Psalm 139:17-18 (NLT)

Sunday, April 10, 2011

And another one is done...

I managed to finish my 9th Winter Wonderland block on Friday night and get started on the final one.  Except for the gazillion tiny circles, this one went very quickly...

Winter Wonderland Block #9
I've already finished the snowflakes on block 10 and am now working my way through the snowmen.  I'll give myself another day or two to work on it, but then I really must get busy on making a class sample.

Closeup of Block #9
Do you know it's supposed to be 90 degrees here tomorrow?  Is that crazy or what?  Our temps have been yoyoing the last couple of weeks, but at least I can look at the weather forecast and know how to dress.  It always makes me think back to when people didn't have weather forecasts and just took each day as it came.  We really are spoiled, aren't we?

And talking of spoiled...

Since she hurt her foot, she's been lapping up all the extra attention and treats.  But once she's healed, Mr. Quilting Bug and I agree she's got to go on a diet.

Until later...

Jesus replied, "If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water." 
John 4:10, NLT

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Stash Report Week #14...

April 2 - 8, 2011

This stash report will see me back in the red, but for once, I don't mind.  I received a yummy package from Fat Quarter Shop this week.  I can't tell you how much I was looking forward to this package.  Even though they ship stuff really fast, I was still kept checking it's status online.

Package from Fat Quarter Shop
I love how they wrap all of your purchases in special bags.  It insures that they arrive at your house in pristine condition.  And even though you can already see what's inside, it's still a bit like opening presents.  Included in this package was 1 Jelly Roll and 2 Charm packs of Maison de Garance.  There was also 4.5 yards of this turkey red fabric that I'll use for borders and binding.  That's a total of 8.75 yards of fabric from this line, but it also means I have plenty to make both a king-size quilt and a coordinating wall hanging for my bedroom.  (I already have 3 other jelly rolls.)

Maison de Garance pre-cuts and yardage
Also included in this package was 3.5 yards of fabric from the Buttercup line.  I needed this for the borders to yet another king-size quilt for our bedroom.  (I'm planning on making 3 different quilts.)  And then I bought 1 yard of this soft creamy yellow from Astor Manor.  It coordinates beautifully with the Buttercup fabrics.

Buttercup and Astor Manor
So that brings my total to 13.25 yards for the week.

Although I've been slowly making progress in organizing my sewing room, it's still not done, so I haven't had a chance to actually do any sewing this week.  I'm finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel though.  My goal is to get everything organized and then worry about moving the furniture and painting next month when I have more free time.  I'm actually pretty excited about how neat and tidy everything is becoming.  I'll share before and after pictures when it's done.

Purchased-this-week: 13.25 yards
Used-this-week: 0 yards
Purchased-to-date: 75.25 yards
Used-to-date: 64.5 yards
Net used: -10.75 yards

Until later...

Search for the Lord and for his strength; continually seek him. 
1 Chronicles 16:11 (NLT)

Friday, April 8, 2011


While out playing with our neighbor, our dear Gabriel sustained a painful injury.  She managed to snag one of her toes on something and pulled her nail back all the way to the quick.  For anyone who has had something similar happen (and who hasn't), you know how very painful it can be.

She was fortunate that it was an inside claw so she's not putting pressure on it when she walks.  But there was no way she was going to let me doctor it - not that I even knew what to do.  I'm very grateful that our vet was able to come out to the house within a couple of hours to take care of it.  She had to sedate her before she could work on it.

She had hoped to save some of the nail, but it bent too far back and she ended up pulling the whole thing.  I really had no idea what was underneath.  Although we've had dogs pretty much my whole life, this had never happened to them before.  So if you're interested, here's what your dog's toes actually look like...

She had plenty of sedation and pain medication so by the time the vet took the nail off, Gabriel didn't feel anything.  As I understand it, a protective coating will cover it in about a week and it will take 2 months for the nail to grow back.  In the meantime she's on both pain medication and an antibiotic to prevent infection.  Her paw is also bandaged up for the next 24-72 hours.

Poor girl, she's really out of it right now.  But that's far better than her feeling the pain of her injury.

She did come alert enough to take some more medication and eat some chicken her daddy fixed her, but you can see in her eyes that's she still feeling the meds.

It's just one of those things that happen (as we all know), but again I'm very grateful our vet made it out so quickly to take care of it.  Thanks Janine!

Until later...

I will praise you forever, O God, for what you have done. I will trust in your good name in the presence of your faithful people. 
 Psalm 52:9 (NLT)

Happy Birthday to our baby...

who turned 2 today!  Two years ago his mom - a stray - gave birth to him and 3 brothers at my parent's place.  After a visit down there, David immediately won me over and at four months of age (when he was old enough for the snip snip), he joined our family.  Thank you Mr. Quilting Bug for letting me talk you into adopting him!

David at 4 months
Well today, he is our laid back, not too bright, but incredibly sweet 21.5 pound baby.

Happy birthday big boy!  Life wouldn't be the same without you.

Until later...

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.  
James 1:5 (NIV)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Some quilty goodness...

Last month I mailed a batch of quilted greeting cards to a friend.  We're both part of a group called "The Twelve of Us" and this was our latest project.  If you're interested, you can see the cards I made as well as the other projects we've done so far here

Just the other day, I received some in return and wanted to share them with you.  She went in a completely different direction than I did, but then again, I have a feeling she knew what she was doing.  I, on the other hand, relied on a Google search to give me some pointers.

Aren't they pretty?
It was a great project idea, but I really don't see me actually mailing any of them.  And if by some chance I do, know that I must think you're a very, very special person if you get one.  Here are some close up pics.  This first one is my favorite...

I just love the butterfly charm and his flight path!

Aren't they beautiful?  Thank you Amanda for all your effort on my behalf.  I really appreciate them!

Until later...

A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person's strength. 
Proverbs 17:22 (NLT)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Sunny Days...

On Monday, it was a beautiful sunny day in the mid-80s.  It didn't last long, but the cats enjoyed every minute of it.  Our sunroom gets the most sunshine (as you would expect) and they parked themselves in their customary summer spots.

Jack will spend most of the summer on this tray.
Sam commandeers all of the loveseat.
David takes the spot closest to the windows.
Doesn't he look happy?
I hope you're enjoying some sunshine wherever you are.

Until later...

Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, and everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track”  
Proverbs 3:6 (MSG)