A blog about "nothing"!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Done!!!!! (hurray!)

I finally have the project finished that I've been wanting to share with you all, so glad.  I will warn you that this is going to be a long post with lots of photos as I'm going to share with you the step by step instructions, just in case you might want to try one yourself.

I love flannel sheets, my mom bought me a set when I was a kid, and every year I look forward to getting ours out during cold weather.  I think we would have been very cold this winter in particular had we not had a nice set (or two!) of flannel sheets.  Some people don't like them, I AM NOT one of those people.  Several years ago I bought a set with a fall leaf pattern all over them.   I am a sucker for anything with leaves on it, and this set was really well made, fit the bed great and were wonderful to sleep on.  I liked them so much that the following year I bought another set made by the same company in a different pattern.  What a let down.  First they didn't fit the bed well, but then over the years as I've washed them, they have become a mess.  They pilled up a lot, and while they don't look horrible, they are like sleeping on sandpaper, blech.  I wasn't quite sure what to do with them because they were still in good shape otherwise, they just weren't fit for sleeping against.  I stuck them in a bag and thought on it for a while.

Several years ago a co-worker gave me a rag quilt as a gift.  It is super warm, and if you know even just a little bit about sewing, they really aren't all that hard to make. You just need to know how to sew a straight line. I thought about it and decided that it would be a good use for these sad sheets.  I hadn't really acted on it though, until a friend of mine got on a kick during the first Polar Vortex and made some of these for her kids and a couple as gifts.  Hers are so pretty, it was just the motivation I needed to get started on mine.

Here are the monster sheets:
If you look close, you can see the pilliness............(is that a word?)
 
First I cut the elastic off the fitted sheet so it would lay flat when I cut it.
 
 
And cut out the seams that make this sheet fitted (supposedly,yeah right!)
 
And then I was ready to start cutting my squares.  I cut these at 12 inches x 12 inches so that I would end up with 10 inch squares once I sewed it all together. 
 


The pile of cut squares!
 
At this point it was time to start pinning squares together.  When I started, I had no idea how many squares I would get out of these sheets since I didn't measure, but I ended up with enough to either make a 52 x 72 throw (which I chose) or a 62 x 62 throw.  I definitely liked the idea of a longer throw one direction as opposed to square.  In case you are wondering, these were queen sized sheets.
 
 
Once a front and back were pinned together, all I had to do was sew two straight lines from corner to corner so they had a big x on them.  Since I was using flannel, I chose not to put anything between the layers, but if you were using a lightweight cotton quilt type fabric, you would want something to add warmth.  The one I have was made using Warm and Natural quilt batting, but my friend who has been making them recently said she used polar fleece which to me made a whole lot more sense, it's lighter weight but just as warm.  If you are making one like that, you just need to cut your batting/fleece 2 inches shorter than your squares, just making sure to center it when you assemble your squares.
After you have all of your x's sewn, then you start assembling your squares, using a 1 inch seam allowance.  I know that seems large, but it will make sense later on, I promise!!! 
Then start putting your rows together!  If I were to make another one, I would assemble all of my rows in twos first, then put those together as it gets quite heavy, I made the mistake of just adding a row as I went and by the time I was done, my neck was killing me because it weighed a ton.  Live and learn!
 
A view of the back--I did a different pattern on the back from the front.
 
After you are finished sewing all the squares together, sew a one inch line around the entire outer border.  Then comes the hard part--not really, it just took me forever because I didn't have the right tools!
Using a pair of scissors, you will cut each seam about 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch in, about a half inch apart.  BUY A PAIR OF SPRINGLOADED SCISSORS if you are in a hurry!   This part is killer on your hands, I didn't have a pair of springloaded scissors and as a result, it took me forever to do this part.  I own a pair now!!!!!!!!
 
Once you are all finished with that part, throw it in the washing machine.  My friend recommended using the delicate cycle because it agitates it more, which causes the threads to become looser.  This is what mine looks like after one trip through the washer/dryer.  A few more trips through and it will get nice and fuzzy at the seams.
 
I am really pleased with the way it turned out, and the best part is it didn't cost me a thing, I recycled something, and the thread was some that I inherited from my mom's sewing cabinet.  Freebies are a good thing, aren't they?! 
 
I didn't have much left from the sheets when I was done--4 squares and the pillow cases.  As you can see from this photo, the pillow cases didn't match anymore either after they had been washed several times, so I was glad that I didn't have to use them.  Not sure what I'm going to do with the leftovers, probably just stash them away for a while until another idea comes to mind!
 
I think I would like to make another of these out of traditional quilt fabric with polar fleece batting that is big enough for us to use as a queen size bedspread.  I will probably go with the old style tradition of it being a hodgepodge of prints and colors, kind of like the ones our grandmas and great-grandmas would have made.  It would be a great way for me to use up some odds and ends pieces I have floating around here, hmmmm........................

 

 
 

 

Monday, February 24, 2014

My 200th post!!!

A few days ago I was checking some stats on my blog when I realized my next post--this very post--would be my 200th--WOW!  I have been working on this for 6 years, I had no idea when I started it what direction it would take.  It was mostly for friends and family, but over the years I've "met" some really interesting people from all over.  I've learned things, shared things, and expanded my world a bit.  Go figure!

Many blogs have a theme--fashion, lifestyle, cooking, etc.  A few weeks ago Wendy at Young Heart/Old Soul was trying to decide what her blog theme was, and came to the conclusion that hers was an "anti-blog"--too funny!  I guess this blog kind of fits in to that category as well, although Wendy does a much better job at keeping to certain themes.  So I've decided that my blog is (wait for it..........)--A Blog About Nothing!   Jerry Seinfeld (and George too) would be so proud.

Thanks to all who pop in here to read, comment, and enjoy.  And I promise to share my "big" project before the week is out, there is one part of it that is taking a bit longer than I expected which I will completely explain with the big reveal.  It's been a fun experiment. 

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Winter is Almost Over................(fingers crossed!!!!)

We had another nasty storm Sunday night, wind, thunder and lots more snow.  It was hard to even measure just how much we got because it had drifted so much, I've heard as little as 4 inches and as much as a foot.  All I know is it is looking pretty deep because we still had a lot left from before.  Periodically Laney gets lost in a snow drift when we take her out.  They are saying this is the worst overall winter since 1982, and I believe it, I don't remember the last time we had snow continuously on the ground like this along with such low temperatures.   I remember the winter of 1982 well because that was the year our pipes froze and broke in the garage and we couldn't bathe for several days until it was repaired, I likened it to living on Gilligan's Island without the water! 

Looking at the long range forecast through March helps a little, while it's not supposed to be super warm, it's at least supposed to be warmer than it has been.   It's in the 40's today, and supposed to be warmer overall for the next few days.  The only drawback to that is when it gets warm too fast, snow melts, and when you have this much snow to melt off, flooding becomes a major concern.  Of particular concern around here are the rivers in the Pittsburgh area, not just because of them overflowing their banks, but also because of ice chunks dislodging and causing damage to bridges and knocking barges loose from their moorings. 

One of the reasons we aren't going to have a warmer than normal March is because all 5 of the Great Lakes are nearly frozen over, I heard a statistic that said they are over 90% frozen!!!  As a result it delays the warm up for this region and causes us to have a gloomier/colder than normal spring--ugh!  Another little issue that we might have is sightings of Canadian mountain lions in this area--it has happened in previous years when Lake Erie has frozen over like this.  While it would be kind of neat to see one, I'm hopeful that there aren't many of them that will need to be relocated back to their native areas. 

I've been trying to keep warm, and thinking about what I want to do in the coming weeks.  I have been thinking about my gardening project for the coming summer and have been debating about when to start some of my seeds.  I want to start on some pre-spring cleaning around here, and I've got a couple of small craft projects I want to do.  And I am close to finished on the project I mentioned earlier, hoping to share it all with you soon.  It's been fun to work on because it combines several of my favorite things--recycling/repurposing an item along with sewing. 

The one thing that I've been doing to help me through this last of winter is looking at spring clothing in some of my favorite catalogs.  I did mention earlier that I purchased a few things from Lands End, last week I made a run to Goodwill and found an adorable dress and a pair of capri pants.  Yesterday I picked up a nice basic cardigan sweater on clearance too that will look great with all of those white t-shirts I have.  The hubby and I went shopping a couple of Saturdays ago and I got a wonderful new raincoat that I can't wait to wear, along with some cute shoes.   I'm actually thinking about going through my stored clothing sometime this week and start pulling out a few things that are nice cross-over pieces.  Whatever it takes to get through the end of this frozen season! 

What are you doing to get through these last weeks of winter? 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A Little Project

My big project that I promised I would reveal this week has been postponed to next week.  I got a little bit side tracked due to some unexpected "stuff and things".   First, I battled a nasty headache two days last week and one day this week.  Not fun, it's the result of a shoulder/neck injury from way back when and I think all this nasty weather we've been having caused a flare up.  It's under control now.  Second, my laptop became very sick over the weekend, so sick that I had to go buy a new one.  I did manage to get it to come on long enough to get my data off it (hallelujah!) but it is now in the unreliable category.  I now realize too with a newer laptop, just how ugly my banner is on here, so apologies to everyone who cringes when they see it--I promise I will be changing that soon. 

Anyhow, I did have a small project that I wanted to do, so I thought I would share that with you instead.  A friend of mine challenged a group of us to start making cards, our first challenge was a card made entirely out of scraps, the next was a valentine card, then a birthday card and this time around is a wedding card.  The timing couldn't have been better on the wedding card, I have a wedding coming up this spring.  I had done several of these cards a while ago but used them all up. I liked the design a lot, so I thought I would do it again, but make one in the colors for the wedding:


Here's the valentine card, it's for the hubby:
Just in case you are trying to figure out the inside, it has to do with the tv show "The Big Bang Theory"! (we are big fans)

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

He pulled a Cliff Clavin......and he STILL won!!!!

We watch Jeopardy pretty regularly, this week was the conclusion of the annual teen tournament.  The three finalists were all very deserving, I truly believe that the three best players made it to the last rounds.  The ending however was priceless.

One of our favorite episodes of the TV show Cheers was when Cliff appeared on Jeopardy.  It was like the categories were handpicked for him:  Moms and Sons, Beer, Civil Servants, Stamps From Around The World, Celibacy, Bar Trivia.  Of course he does exceptionally well, only to screw it all up in Final Jeopardy.  The question: "Archibald Leach, Bernard Schwartz and Lucille LeSeur".  Cliff has wagered all of his money, but hasn't a clue what the answer is, so he responds with "Who are three people who have never been in my kitchen."  (FYI the answer is "Who are Cary Grant, Tony Curtis and Joan Crawford") 

Tonight we get to the final Jeopardy question.  Keep in mind that since this is a tournament, the total dollar amount from last night is added to tonight's score to determine a winner.  One young man named Leonard Cooper was in the lead and he pulled one of the gutsiest moves ever.  First, he bet almost all of his pot on a Daily Double and got the correct answer.  The Final Jeopardy question was ”On June 6, 1944 he said, ‘The eyes of the world are upon you.” (The answer is Dwight D. Eisenhower).  The young man didn't know the answer but was smart enough (unlike our buddy Cliff) to realize that if he bet nothing, he stood a good chance of winning.  He responded with  ”Who is some guy in Normandy, but I just won $75,000!”

Way to go Leonard, and congratulations!!!





Thursday, February 6, 2014

Embarrassing!!!

I ordered some stuff last week from Lands End out of their clearance section--a spring jacket, a turtleneck in a color I'd been looking for and a really cute dress.  I really wasn't looking for a dress, but it was a sleeveless polo style (love), a pretty spring like shade of green (green is "my" color, goes great with my green/hazel eyes and coloring) and it was $8.00.  Yeah, that's right, 8 whole buckaroos.  I couldn't pass it up. 


My order arrived yesterday, and everything was awesome, including the $8 dress.  I can't wait till warm weather arrives so I can wear it, I am already picturing what I can wear with it accessory-wise.  I think it will look great with a pair of sandals, a brown leather braid belt like they show, and a sweater for cooler times, either worn over it or tied around the shoulders.  I have the sandals, lord knows I have enough sweaters, but the belt....hmmm.....perhaps I can find something I like at a thrift store........

This morning I decided to put the jacket away and in the process, came across my belt hanger.  Lo and behold, look what I found on it:


I honestly didn't remember that I had this, not sure that I ever used it because it is in brand new condition.  I think it might have come from Coldwater Creek, and I haven't shopped there in ages.  Maybe it's time to really go through my closet!  I like it because it's not really thick, so it will look great with the new dress, and the best part is that I didn't have to go buy something new.   I am having flashbacks though to an episode of Oprah where Suzie Orman went to some lady's house and they cleaned out her closet to find that she had multiples of the same items, she was so disorganized that when she couldn't find something she just went and bought new.  I'm not that bad, but perhaps it's time to really do a deep clean of my closet.  Oooops!!! 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Enough already!!!

This is what it looks like outside our windows at the moment:

It is coming down hard.  I am beyond tired of extreme weather.  I don't mind some snow or cold, but this is getting ridiculous.  This is that heavy, wet snow that makes driving next to impossible for even the most seasoned snow driver, and takes down utility lines.  Before the week is out we are supposed to have single digit and negative temps yet again overnight a couple of times.  Possibly another major snow over the weekend.  Many schools have cancelled again for the day, these poor kids are going to be going to school up to the 4th of July at this rate.  It is snowing so hard in some places the road crews can't keep up, the one county in Ohio is telling people not to go to work--unheard of, I can say in all of my years of living here, I've never heard that.  And that damned groundhog predicts 6 more weeks of this crap--he'd better be wrong!!!!

This weather is killing my mojo to do anything, it's so depressing to not be able to even safely go and get a gallon of milk.  I'd give anything for an early spring about now.  At some point this morning I will have to go dig out my car and the driveway so the hubby can at least get home.  When I talked to him a little while ago he was concerned with getting stuck in customer parking lots.  Remind me again why we continue to live here?

So Laney and I are just hanging out at home, watching TV and staying warm.  I did start a project yesterday that I hope to share with you all next week if all goes well.  It's one of those things I've had in the back of my mind and finally decided to try it.  So far so good.  Keep your fingers crossed for me.
"Even I'm sick of this weather!  I want to go to Jerry's for lunch."