Tuesday, May 31, 2011

California Dreamin'

Last Wednesday evening, after work and karate, I loaded my kids in the car and drove them to my mother-in-law's in Pennsylvania (about 5.5 hours with no stops, but c'mon, I've got two kids in the car - there were stops!). Needless to say, THAT was a late night. On Thursday morning, after taking the kids out to the bike path to wear them out a bit on their scooters, I left them in her loving care to drive south to Philadelphia to meet my husband at the airport and fly off into the sunset with him. We landed in San Francisco, then drove south to Palo Alto, as the purpose of the trip was for me to present at a conference at Stanford.

Friday was a picture perfect LAZY day - naps, walking around town, a picnic lunch of Vietnamese food, a matinee - followed by a pre-conference dinner meeting that night. Saturday, however, was a marathon - we had to be at the conference no later than 7:45 AM, and it ended at 6:30 PM - but an invigorating one. It was one of those days where I realize that I am truly good at what I do and that what I do makes a difference, and it gives me the energy to keep going.

Then, Sunday morning, it was back to the airport for the long flight back east, and Monday it was the long drive home again. I had a great time - it is important for my husband and me to have some time together but without the kids to reconnect every now and then - but how nice to sit still for a minute, even if it is at work.

In quilty news, I spent my time working on my Lil Miss Shabby Birdie BOM blocks. I finished February, and am at least halfway done with April, which means, I'm really only 1 month behind now with May left to do. Here's February, un-ironed and without the 2.5" blocks around the border yet. This was my first attempt at the Lazy Daisy Stitch - I like!!! All those hearts, though, I didn't really like. I finally realized that I can modify these however I want, right, not just the colors but also the design, so on the April block, I'm leaving out the Easter Eggs.

Funny side note - as I was sitting in the staff room at the conference during a break working on this block, a man asked me if that was a "Shabby" pattern. I was taken off guard - did he really know what I was working on? He DID!!! His fiance also follows Lil Miss Shabby and is working on these blocks, too! How neat (and unexpected) is that!?!

There were also a couple minor fabric purchases during this trip. I stopped by the quilt shop near my MIL's to get another quarter yard of Kona Snow to finish the Bee Block that I ran out of fabric for before I left home. I went in, got what I came for and left without even peeking at the other fabric in the store. It practically KILLED me, but I did it! Then, while in California, my needle threader broke (OK, folks, does anyone have a recommendation for a needle threader for embroidery floss? I use those cheapo fake metal ones from a 3-pack at Walmart, but I go through them SO quickly. Please tell me there is something better out there!), so I went out in search of a replacement and I stumbled across a JoAnn's. While there I checked out the clearance fabric and found this green polka dot flannel (1 yard - I'm so attracted to dots these days!) and this red pirate fabric for my boys (1/2 yard).

Less than $5 spent - I'm so proud of my restraint!!!