Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Adios Sarah and Ramesh....

Today, January 11th is a day that Mike and I refer to at "Billy/Willie Day."  

Mike's dad, Bill Andrews passed away on this day in 1984.  My mother Wilma Jones Brackett was born this day in 1920.  We honor them by fixing a nice dinner and toasting them with a tasty adult beverage.

Well, today we have a new event for the 11th of January.  Mike's daughter Sarah and her boyfriend Ramesh left San Francisco International Airport for Panama and the beginning of a year-long journey around the world.  Sarah saved, paid off debt and planned this for two years, and today it came to fruition.
Sarah and Ramesh brought a van load of Rubbermaid tubs to store under our house and a lovely leather chair to store in our bedroom.  We took them to breakfast yesterday morning and kissed her goodbye just after.  

We will see Sarah and Ramesh in May, on Mike's birthday in Rome, which is the final day of our cruise.  That's a good thing, because I'm having a hard time envisioning an entire year without her smiling face.  Mike points out that we've done this before when she studied abroad in Leeds, UK, 1998-1999, but still.  A year is a long darned time!  

This trip has been brewing in her mind for a very long time, and at age 33, the time is now!  I'm proud of her for following her dreams and I know she will have some great tales to tell.

You can follow their trip at:

Sunday, January 08, 2012

A Few Finishes in 2011

 While 2011 was consumed by a lot of quilt guild activities, I did manage a couple of finishes for some very-much-desired new babies.  This quilt was made from a pattern I found on Moda Bake Shop and is for the baby daughter of my my son-in-law's cousin.  She was born in December 2010.  The adorable boys in the picture are, of course, Benjamin and Alex.

The second finish was made by my friend Kathy B. and I for the new granddaughter of our late friend Sand B.  Sandy passed away in 2005,  shortly after her oldest daughter, then 40 got married for the first time.  Six years later, a baby arrived, and we know that Sandy would have been over-the-moon happy, so we had to make a quilt for this welcome addition.  Since Kathy and I inherited much of Sandy's collection of 1930's reproductions, we decided to use some of them in our quilt for her granddaughter.
There was a third finish, but I seem to have neglected to snap a picture of it.  The third quilt was for a special baby girl who was given a middle name that my daughter and I share--Aileen.  Her mother became a friend of my daughter in grad school and we consider her a part of our extended clan.

I plan for many more finishes in 2012, and may actually touch my sewing machine today.  I have 12 pillowcases prepped to sew up for the troops in Afghanistan.  Broadway Quilts in Sonoma is collecting them for the hospitals in lieu of paper pillowcases.  I think it's a great way to get reunited with my sweet Bernina, don't you?

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

The End

I can't get the song "I'm Getting Married in the Morning" from My Fair Lady out of my head because tomorrow I will swear in my replacement and become a regular schmo at the guild.  I'm so excited!  I got my January newsletter done today, so I'm going to actually sew this week!  I still do the monthly newsletter and keep up the database/roster, but I've been doing that for years and could do it in my sleep.  I will get to knit or stitch during meetings, go to the loo whenever I please, chat, sip tea or coffee....the list goes on.

I feel like a kid on Christmas Eve.

PS: Don't get me wrong, it was fun, but enough is enough!

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

The Holidays are Over!

Well, the kids are gone, the house will be un-decorated today and the exorcise (not a misspelling, my sister's name for it) program has been resumed in full. Life can go back to normal.

As I said before, I am so looking forward to 2012, for more quilting time and less responsibility.  Also, 2012 is a milestone birthday for me--60--and we are celebrating by taking a cruise around Italy in the spring.  Shortly after that, we will go to the annual Winemaker Magazine conference at Cornell University in New York.  I've never been to New York, and given the choice of side-tripping to NYC or Niagara Falls was not really a decision for me.  Niagara Falls is on my bucket list, and I can't wait to see it in person, and from the Canadian side.

In my absence from the blogging world, my grandson Benjamin, who will be 7 in February, has become a budding chef and is playing the piano.  Alex is 4 1/2 and in preschool and is a very active little fellow.  They are soooo fun.  My stepson Scott got married on Halloween 2009 and he and wife Erin are doing well.  My stepdaughter Sarah is realizing her dream of quitting her job of 12 years and travelling the world for a year.  Her boyfriend Ramesh has decided to join her and surf around the world.  They leave on the 11th and I can't imagine how a year without Sarah will be.  My son Daniel moved into his own place after living with his best friends until their recent wedding.  He's enjoying the simple life in his own place and is a wonderful uncle to Kate's two boys.  Kate and Steve have been married 11 years this week, and life is good for them as the boys continue to grow up.   My dogs Gator and Ace are 13 and 11 respectively and are doing fine for being so old, and they are definitely happy that the guests are gone.

Mike is good and is making some mighty good wine.  We planted some Pinot Noir grapes in part of our yard previously unused and they will be producing in 2 more years.  That keeps him on the run, for sure.  

Last summer, Mike wanted to go to a pitch and putt golf course and play nine holes and I told him I'd go and walk with him.  Well, that wasn't allowed, so we rented some clubs and a pull cart and I was going to just walk and pull the cart.  Well, me being me, I decided that if I had to rent them, I was going to play, even though I'm left-handed and the clubs were rightys.  So, I played that day and did OK.  The next time, we rented the lefty clubs and I did better.  Within 2 weeks, Mike had ordered me a basic set of clubs online and I was enrolled in lessons.  Since then, we have enjoyed playing golf 2-3 times a week, and have introduced both of the girls to it.  Our boys, who took lessons together 15 years ago both play regularly and we've had the pleasure of playing with both of them this month. 

As Mrs. Goodneedle says, Life is Good!

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Welcome 2012!

Welcome 2012! I just finished up a two year stint as president of my quilt guild, a time-comsuming job that has seriously affected my time to quilt and my desire to work on my blog. Well that is about to change. This year, I plan to work on Fee Motion Quilting Challenge. My partner in crime is my new HandiQuilter Sweet 16, a lovely machine with a 16 inch throat that I can sit down to use. She's been sitting in my sewing room while I finished up my duties, patiently waiting for me. So, the word for 2012 is Mastery. I will master machine quilting in 2012. Want to join me? Just look up Sew Cal Gal on Facebook and join the fun@ Happy New Year!