Monday, April 26, 2010

Two for one.....

Two posts in one day??? What???? I just had to blog about the retreat this past weekend. We had a great weekend, but I was really wondering ..... Is there any such thing as "quilt ettiquette"? I know it is taboo to use other people's tools without asking - like the all revered rotary cutter but what about other things?

What are the rules for quilting in groups? I am picturing Amish women (in my head they are the founding mothers of quilt retreats) all gathered around the quilting frame - do they have the same issues we do in groups? I am guessing that they do not have the issue of the super industrial commercial iron blowing the fuse, over and over and over - yes Julie I am talking about you (this was a great laugh this weekend -so thanks for the entertainment) - but do they have other issues?

Do the Amish women talk about their husbands - certainly they don't complain about having to watch football or the NASCAR race every sunday - but do they spend too much time in the barn - their own version of the man cave or spend too much time working on the horse and buggy?

I already know one rule - in my head at least - there is no crying in quilting - it is an homage to Tom Hanks in A League of Their Own - but I need to come up with others.

The retreat was so much fun this past weekend - but like with all gatherings - it had some small glitches (that's glitches - not bitches).

Here are my rules for retreats.... next year I am going to make the attendees sign a contract that states they agree to the following rules.....

1) Never ever leave your wing man. We all have the friends we are closer to and naturally gravitate to - but when you have to sit next to Nancy Know It All - never ever leave her alone.

2) Have a code word with your wing man - if you get bothered or want to go postal - it is nice to have a phrase to let your wing man know what you are feeling

3) If you can't carry it - you have no business bringing it. My motto for traveling is if I can't carry my suitcase - I have no business packing it. Asking people to carry things for you - is muy annoying. And no - I don't mean carrying my mom's suitcase or machine or my friend's mom's gear - these are my job - I am the porter upon arrival - but others people's stuff - not in the cards

4) Don't go to Mr. Pancake in April - it ain't open. Don't eat at Country Kitchen either - while it was fantastic as a kid - now, not so much

5) Try to go to at least one quilt shop every trip - it is nice to get out of the house for awhile.....

6) Cheetos - not a quilt friendly snack - who wants orange crumbs on your fabric - but the baked ones are oh so good.....

7) Silence is golden - for some of the time.... The rule should be..... sew a little, talk a little, repeat, repeat, repeat. Not talk, talk, interrupt, bud in, talk, talk, sew, sew, press, repeat, repeat, repeat. For the health and criminal record of all people involved - shut your pie hole some of the time...... we go on retreat to get away from the constant nagging and commotion at home - we don't need it all weekend.

8) Only go to locations where alcohol is allowed - if you have to deal with number seven - a slight buzz makes it a little better.

9) Take a group photo - we didn't do this ......

10) Remember to behave - any one of us can be voted out of the tribe and kicked off the island - we don't want to be the one that people are talking about the whole next year - we don't want to be the Jill Junior of the group (and no I haven't changed the name to protect the innocent)

I did have a great time - I loved spending time with sister and mom - it was great to see my mom getting back into quilting after her stroke. I had to fight back tears after putting her blocks up on the design wall. It just made me think how fast things can change and how lucky we are to have great friends and family that want to spend time with us.

To everyone that attended the retreat..... thank you for the laughs and memories - I am already wanting to plan next year!

Today is like New Year's for me.....

So today is my birthday and I feel like it is actually the second New Year's day of the year. Whenever it is my birthday, I always think about the things I want to do in the upcoming year. I am sure I did this last year, but as I didn't write them down, I don't remember what I wanted to accomplish. So, this year I will write them down - forever in cyber space and hopefully have a fabulous year reaching my gioals. Some are already in the works - but need to be accomplished or finnished - so here goes.......

1) Take a vacation - alright, I know what you are thinking - I already do this alot - but it never hurts to have something to look forward to
2) Complete a 150 mile bike race - barring any injury or sudden cardiac arrest during the ride - this should be accomplished in July
3) Climb a mountain - there is a very small one in Lapham Park - called Lapham Peak - it does sound impressive to have this as a goal though - won't it be cool to tell people that I climbed a mountain - they don't need to know how small it was
4) Listen to an audio book - I am strongly opposed to audio books - it is like voting for the opposite political party - I love turning the pages of books - but in the spirit of bipartisanship - I am willing to go across the aisle and at least try something new. I think I should try listening to my favorite book - Memoirs of a Geisha - on audio. Maybe I could listen to the books I already read - hopefully I can find all of Jane Austen's books on audio - she like me, loves the happy ending
5) Lose 25 pounds - hopefully training for my 150 will help reach this goal
6)Complete at least one triathalon this summer - the thought of getting back into the pool is only less scary than the thought of me on a treadmill - I am definitely not a graceful runner.
7) Read a book a month - I have about 25 waiting for me to read
8) Finish one quilt project a month - hopefully this will be doable.
9) Actually use the cook books I have at least once a month - I have to call my mom everytime I need to boil an egg - I can bake beautiful cakes - but boil an egg? How could I handle something so complicated.
10) Learn how to down load the pictures from my camera onto my blog - if I can't boil an egg - I don't know how I will be able to accomplish this - I will probably not get around to this until February or March.......
11) Find all the barn quilts in Wisconsin in person - I won't jump to the dark side of making the blocks - but I love driving and finding them - there is nothing better than a map, a car and list to check things off of - it is like my very own scavenger hunt - Layfayette County - here we come

Unfortunately 1 day down, 364 to go - no goals accomplished ..... YET!!!!