Saturday, January 7, 2017

Two Days of Friendship

As I roll over in bed and open my eyes, I see that it is 6:30 and my sweet man has just left for work.  Allison is due here at 7:30 and I'm woefully behind on being ready.  Springing forth from bed - well as much as a 58 year old woman can spring - I start dashing around, sweeping, vacuuming, cleaning bathrooms, finding the guest room, and generally making the house presentable for company.  She calls and says that she is running late so I tackle the mountain of wadded up yellow scraps that I left on the ironing board last night when I emptied a gallon bag of them.  Press, press, press and I just barely finish as she arrives.  Whew ---   I help her bring her things in and as she shows me what she did with the container Elisabeth gave us, I grab mine and do the same.  Different perspectives on use.  A quick picture is sent to Elisabeth so she knows how much we love them.  Oh, and that we miss her today.

Next, she shows me her ONE completed block of En Provence and I show mine.  HAHAHAHA.  Mine is a mini for a throw pillow.  I haven't started the big ones yet.  Here's mine on top of hers.  It doesn't even cover the center of the block.  It's about 1/4 the size overall.

And here they both are:

Now to go make some scones to have with our tea while we visit.  It's about 9:30 when we leave the kitchen and for some reason I have major focus issues.  Allison forgot her leader/enders and I had decided to make the dry erase supply bags for my daughter's kindergarten class as mine so she offers to help out.  While I round up supplies, answer emails, check Facebook, and just keep bringing stuff into the main room, she is already busy and working away.

What have I done?  Well here's a glimpse.

I have created an award winning mess of a room.  How many more things can I bring in here?  I know you're thinking that I shouldn't have said that and you're right.  By the time I have everything in here, have shared my upcoming projects, prepped the bags, and loaded a movie (Steel Magnolias) into the computer, not only have I astounded myself with the disaster around me, but I've lost the whole morning.  It's time to go make lunch.

I'm making chili and a nutty cabbage salad along with some honey cornbread for lunch and I'm getting dang hungry while working on it.  I listen to the movie as I work and Allison sews away --- standing as she has been having some back issues.  She has put her SewEzi table up on risers and is using her right hand to work the pedal.  I think it's all that hand crank experience she has that allows her brain to let her work this way.  I'm in awe.  Lunch is done - time to make the tummies happy.

By the time I have it cleaned up, it's after 1:00 and I take my first stitch.  Yay Deb.

As we watch the rest of Steel Magnolias, things go okay.  I even manage to get a block made.  Can I get a Hallelujah here?

When the second movie (My Big Fat Greek Wedding) begins, things start going awry.  Allison accuses me of taking one of her units (it's under the presser foot) and I spend minutes looking for a strip of fabric that is hanging on my pant leg.  Keep in mind that I never moved and yet I'm looking everywhere for it.  Laughter and tears ensue before we move forward.

Sewing the afternoon away, one movie after another is enjoyed as bags and blocks are created.  Movie number three is The Devil Wears Prada and when it ends, so do we.  It's time for some dinner and we are off to Cane Rosso for pizza.  (Allison's beautiful units and webbed blocks -- lovely, simply lovely.)

It's both fun and scary taking people to the restaurants I love.  I want them to like it so much and also worry that, as in anything, tastes are different.  Please don't hate it.

We start out with a foccacia that Allison claims is as big as her head.  Her smile at the first bite is a balm for my worry.  Woohoo.  We're off to a good start.  The margherita pizza is also loved and we end the night with zeppole and a chocolate sauce.  Yep, bread, bread, and more bread.  Divine treats occasionally don't hurt -- they just can't be a daily lifestyle.  It's been such fun but all good things must end and so does our time at Cane Rosso.

On the way home, we make a quick stop at Joann's to grab more ribbon for the bags and that's it.  You all should be really proud of us.  Not another thing went out the door.  Three cheers for self restraint.

Ending our evening with a warm glass of spiced wine is perfect and we are two tired girls off to get some sleep.  See ya tomorrow.


Good morning friends.  It's so nice to start the day with a friend.  Seriously, it's why retreats are so wonderful.  I am indeed blessed to be able to have these little mini retreats every so often at my house.  I don't think I'll ever tire of doing so.  It's tea and scone time again before we are back to the machines and movies.  Jammies all the way this morning.  It's retreat, right?

Rumor Has It starts our day and work continues on the En Provence blocks and the bags.   When the movie ends, I head to the kitchen to make some soup for lunch and Allison sits down to visit and work a crossword puzzle while I do so.  It's nice to have the company and both the soup and puzzle come together.  While the soup simmers, it's time to get cleaned up and dressed.  Dang, that's the first sign that this day will end and I will be sad.

We are joined for lunch by Mister, who is working from home today, and again have a great visit and I finish up with a quick rinse and stack everything in the sink.  I want to sew as much as I can with the time that is left.

The last movie (The Terminal) is put in the player and I do a quick check of Facebook to discover that it is snowing outside.  Yep -- follow me on that one.  We are in a room FULL of windows and yet . . .

It's hard to tell much from the front yard but when I look out the back door, the table is already covered with snow and it's accumulating on the ground.

Okay -- back to sewing.  I'm just head down, making progress on the blocks AND the bags, listening to my friend about to lose her mind.  Nothing is going right for her today and it seems that every time she sews something, it gets turned.  She usually works her blocks from paper plates, but these blocks are too big for that and it's kicking her butt.

At one point, maniacal laughter erupts -- truly -- it even brings Mister from the back to see what is going on.  Yep, mind is lost.  Dang.  I feel so bad for her but there is nothing I can do.

All too soon, 4:00 arrives and she has to make the trek home.  Yes, make a sad face for me while you read this as that is what I am doing.

These bags mean that the fun is over and I now have to sew alone again.  Oh woe is me.  Haha -- too much Greek Wedding.

Well the snow has stopped and there is only a skiff.  I am hopeful that Allison will have an uneventful trip home.  Mister is not so sure.  He felt she should have left when it started.  He's usually right so I'm crossing my fingers that this is one of the few moments he isn't.

After the good-byes are over, I am again sewing away.

I REALLY want to finish these blocks today AND the bags.  At the end of the day, I have all the blocks finished and 32 bags with 16 more ready to sew.  I didn't quite make it, but there is always tomorrow.  The tree where we have been hanging the bags looks pretty cool and my stack of blocks brings me a great deal of happiness and a sense of "job well done."

That's it for the sewing machine today.  I finish the night by starting on the yellow scraps I ironed yesterday morning.  They still need to be tamed.

Finally, at about 9 p.m. Mister is finished working and we have a chance to sit and talk for awhile.  It's such rough time of year for him.  The only bright spot is it gives me more sew time.  I have a lot on my list to finish before leaving town this month.  Can I do it?


  1. I'm always sew delighted with our mini retreat time. All of it!! Time with you, tea, talk, laughing, sewing, movie watching, and ever so yummy food. Thank you for hosting me. I treasure our time together in your cozy home. Hugs, Allison in Plano

  2. How lovely, I laughed out loud, teared up, frowned with concern about Allison's poor back and laughed some more. Joe and Collette have gone back to England, Jerry is in Toronto before he heads back to NY and Clive is in China, time to return to Texas methinks.