Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Kid stuff

Some people wonder how and why I do all the "extra" stuff I do.  After all, I've got a full time job, a family, a hobby that keeps me busy.  But I gotta tell you, that "extra" stuff is what keeps me sane when the job is a drag and the kids are driving me bonkers and my dirty house makes me feel like an unfit mother and wife.  I can go into the karate studio just as low as can be, but after taking my black belt class and then teaching my intermediate class, I am flying high - every time!  And then Cub Scouts and the Ready To Quilt workshop at the elementary school - those are just more opportunities for me to be creative and hang out with kids!

The kids are almost finished with their colored and embroidered blocks for the Fair entry quilt we are making.
My Kindergarten through 2nd graders have turned out to be the most industrious. 
I guess I didn't realize until looking at these photos that they tend to self segregate by gender. But aren't they cute? 
Of course, I didn't have a real plan for the quilt design when we started, but yesterday I started whipping up some alternate blocks for them to sew their blocks to.  Here's a preview of how that quilt will look:
This will go across the top or bottom
They aren't sewn together yet - the kids will do that.  They outlined the letters with a backstitch and colored inside. 
Some ladies in my guild donated fabric for the Ready to Quilt kids, so I picked four the four largest pieces to combine in these quarter square triangle blocks.
And then, last Friday, the Cub Scouts and I were in the Christmas parade (whoever heard of a Christmas parade in NOVEMBER!?!).  We partnered with the drive-in movies again, and marched along behind a truck that was playing Frosty the Snowman on a big screen while we munched popcorn.  We made our "cars" again this year, but I gave myself a break and instead of making them out of cardboard (I swear I nearly got carpal tunnel from cutting so many boxes up last year!), I bought poster board and made them into "sandwich board" cars with some muslin strips across the shoulders.  The boys got really creative with their cars:
Yup, that's a deer peeking out the back window of the FORD truck 
My son even thought to put a seat belt on his driver!
Can you see that his lights are made out of tinfoil?  Who thinks to bring tinfoil to a parade? Clever kid! 
Can you see the little Christmas lights he drew around his windshield? Get my vote for most festive! 
Yesterday and today, the weather has been in the low 70s.  I'll admit to being affected by the weather.  This balmy weather has me skipping around and singing like a kid!  Just think, I'm on my porch in short sleeves and barefoot writing this right now, watching the sun go down...in DECEMBER!  For this child of the Maine woods, that is nearly unheard of!  The hubby and I like to joke about taking off for Panama when things get rough at home and work - well, guess where I got quilt blocks from yesterday?

Thanks, Marina from Panama! (Hubby wants to know why they quilt in Panama if it is warm all the time.  Don't worry guys, in time, I will educate him to our ways.)

And today, I got 71 more quilt blocks in the mail from Lola in VA and the Rainbow Plantation Quilters in AL.  Thanks, guys!

Luckily, I made room in my sewing room today - I mailed out 8 quilts to Blankie Depot in NJ.  That's 14 delivered so far by me, and I believe 3 or 4 more have been delivered directly from the people who have been kind enough to quilt quilts for us.  And there are many more to come.  

Do you know that I've received over 1165 disappearing 4-patch blocks so far?

That doesn't include the ones made by me or those in my quilt guild or those that were made and delivered to me in quilt form or all the orphan blocks and unfinished blocks and tops you guys have sent.  Together, we are making a difference in the lives of those who are still suffering the effects of Hurricane Sandy.  Everyone reach over your shoulder and give yourself a nice pat on the back!

And for my final bit of kid stuff - look at one of my little fellas drew for me in Ready To Quilt yesterday - just melted my heart! (and he obviously knows I love scrappy, improvisational quilts!)