Craziness

4 12 2013

So many times in the last few weeks I’ve wanted to post, but craziness steps in.  Craziness?  you ask.  Yes.  It seems that everything comes at once, sometimes.  My website was launched, and I’ve been busy promoting it with business cards, displaying my quilts at a craft bazaar, and using Facebook to get the word out.  Of course, I’ve also got myself busy with too many projects at once, and I can hear Lucy van Pelt saying, “It’s your own fault, Tracey Lynn!”  Haha.  It is.  But I just can’t help it!!!! Let me explain.  When Pieces by Polly offers a quilt-along, I just HAVE to do it.  Her patterns are quick, simple and so original.  I think the next step will be to sew the rows… 20131204-111843.jpg And then when I was asked to participate in Bonnie Hunter’s mystery quilt with the ladies at the guild, I just had to say yes, because I’ve never done a mystery quilt before, and it’ll be more fun to do it with others, right?  Here’s my stash for that…

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And if I’m going to sell t-shirt quilts, it’d be wise of me to always have one in the works – if I don’t have an order to work on, I should work on one for our family to have more examples to show (I literally have 5 stacks of tees for different quilts), or I should work on one to sell outright (I’ve collected Kentucky Wildcat tees from thrift stores to make a fan quilt to sell).

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I’m behind on the Craftsy 2013 BOM,

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and I bought fabric to make a table runner for a friend, which I haven’t started yet. IMG_0949I haven’t finished the pattern I was making for an EPP bag – my little town has two stores that sells zippers, and both were out of stock of the color zipper I needed.  So the project got set aside and I’ve yet to finished it…except for buying those zippers when they came in 😉

I need about a week of full days to quilt to get current, but that’s where it gets crazy…. It IS the holiday season, so there has been cooking and decorating and extra family time…(no shopping yet).  To make it all crazier, there’s a ton of underlying stress in our house….

Though I have not had a job outside this home in more than 20 years (other than volunteer work), I now have to get a job.  We sacrificed financially while I homeschooled our children and I have stayed home since I stopped doing that three years ago (well I did go to school long enough to get an AS), but now, I can’t stay home any longer.  We are sinking.

My son’s friend was diagnosed with Leukemia in September and has undergone a transplant and been in a coma since.  I cannot get her off my mind.  I am thinking about her and praying for her, my son, and her family constantly. I haven’t even met her, but my son has spoken of her almost daily for over a year…I feel like I know her, and my heart is just breaking for him. Reading her brother’s blog just makes me cry. Every time there’s a new post I think maybe it’s the one saying she’s awake.

And I cry entirely too much.  That makes it hard to do anything.  Not sure what’s going on there, but maybe some PTSD from my mom’s stroke this past spring.  Maybe winter is affecting me – but I AM taking my D3 and using my daylight bulbs.  I don’t know.  I am super-stressed about having to get a job, too. Maybe it’ll help today to just have gotten some of that in type.  Now I’m going to turn on K-Love and quilt.  Therapy.





Busy Busy

27 09 2013

I’ve been so busy I haven’t blogged about lots o’ stuff!

My grandma’s 80th birthday celebration was a blast!  I got to see all the Aunts and Uncles on my mama’s side, Grandma and Grandpa, and some cousins that I rarely get to see – along with their adorable kids, which is special, since mine are about grown!  My daughter got to travel to the party with me, but hubby and son both had to work, so it was a girls’ trip with my Aunt.  We snapped this photo of four generations:  my daughter, myself, mom, and grandma.  Absolutely priceless.

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In other news…

I managed to finish two charity quilts in my mess of a studio by clearing a path to the machine and putting blinders on so I could enjoy a bit of quilting!

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And my quilt studio almost has a cleared floor now, as all but a few things have yet to find a place. I don’t have near enough storage, so until I can get some more furniture or plastic organizers, a bit of stack and pile will have to do.

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I’ve had such a response to my EPP bag, that I’m working on a pattern to sell, and of course, that means I am making another, so that I can put lots of pics in the pattern. I’ll sell the bag, too, I hope! That possibility is exciting!

And it’s time to start on two t-shirt quilts, which will provide one for my daughter, one to raise money for my niece’s senior trip, as it will be raffled off, and the pics of these quilts will allow me to get my website for t-shirt quilts published – finally!

Lots in the works! Busy, busy…and loving it!





All Things New

19 08 2013

As I sit in my loft today, working on the last two lessons of the Pieces by Polly quilt along, it is quiet in the house, save for the gentle noises of the dryer with a fresh load of towels, my little Viking humming away and the radio, reminding me with song after song that Jesus makes all things new. It’s been a difficult few years for me, starting with my daughter being enrolled in public school, after which I went into a tailspin trying to find my place in my new world. College seemed the answer, but turned out just to be an experiment in proving to myself (and everyone else) that I could’ve gone that route any time I chose. I excelled academically and was offered a full scholarship upon completion of the first two years, but I realized that I’d been quite unhappy pursuing an education, despite the high marks. It just wasn’t satisfying. It doesn’t even compare to homeschooling my children all day. As a matter of fact, nothing compares to that, as I have discovered. For me, that was truly my calling. And that job is done. I have been so lost.

Before I found my feet, my mom had a stroke, my dad’s abusive tendencies came roaring back from my childhood into my already rocking world, and my husband took a big pay cut with a job change when the company he’s worked for the last decade closed doors. To top it all off, my son doesn’t like college and my daughter isn’t happy in public school.

I have been asking myself how my perfect world became such a mess, and I have truly wanted to just give up. What does that look like? For the first time in my life, I lost my optimism.

Sometime in the wee hours of the night, all this became smothered in God’s grace, as I prayed and just lay in his presence. Today, I know that He has got all of this in His hands, and that I need to just be still. He makes all things new.

And so I will go on about my days, trusting God with all those things….and that, I have decided, is how you go about giving up, when you just can’t take any more.





A Week of Sunshine!

25 07 2013

My daughter and I took a road trip to visit my sister on the coast. What a wonderful time we had! I had never driven a 10 hour distance before, so I was pretty anxious about it.
We spent our first full day there on the beach, of course, with my sister, her daughter, and our mom, who was also there for a visit. Girl time!
I get some kind of spiritual healing from the coast, and did I ever need it.
Ahhh…

I did a bit of quilt piecing, a bit of reading, and a lot of basking. Yes, some humans do that….I think I may be part reptile 😉 Dragon, I suspect. Haha!

Back home this week, I have been updating my Flickr album of quilts, to use for my online quilting presence for swaps and such, since I don’t have much space here (using the free version for now).
So, here it is…

My first sampler

and I will try to put it in the sidebar as well.
It doesn’t include everything I’ve done, but I plan to try to be better about getting photos of things 🙂





Lost Blog

9 07 2013

Well, it looks like my blog got lost from my life for a couple of years. That’s ok. In that time, lots has happened! Here’s the skinny:

Earned my Associates’ Degree in Science and decided that I didn’t want to go to school any more.

My son did not leave home for college…he is going locally for now 🙂

My hubby got a new job. Jury’s still out on that one. We’re thankful he has one at all 🙂

My postcard trading and letterbox hobbies have fallen by the wayside, and quilting has taken the place of both 🙂

I still love to garden, cook, read, hike, camp and sit in the sun! (Not that we’ve had enough sunshine this summer in KY for me to feel satisfied.) “Rain, rain, go away….”

I think that’s about it! I took a quilting class midway through my AS and got hooked! I haven’t put an album of my creations anywhere but FB so far (so family can keep up with my projects), but I guess I need to do that, since I’m going to give quilt swaps a whirl and feed my obsession while meeting others who “get it” with the whole quilting thing!

Lots of quilt pics to come, and maybe I’ll move this whole blog somewhere else. First, I’m going to search the net to see if there are any places with tools that I’d love. I’m sure lots has changed since I’ve blogged regularly.

Off to start dinner! Today, it’s Mediterranean Pizza, with homemade thin crust, basil pesto (No it’s not fresh, even though there’s LOTS of basil in the herb garden right now.), feta cheese, red onion, sliced roma tomatoes, and black olives. Yum! And I’ll make a cheese pizza for my daughter, who doesn’t like the Med style pizza! And we’ll enjoy that fresh banana nut bread I made this morning 🙂

And of course, since the sun is shining today, we may eat on the patio!





Settled in for Fall

13 11 2011

The leaves have changed the picture of my world in more ways than visually. I have always loved autumn for it’s colors, it’s cozy clothing, the anticipation for the holidays and family-time that it brings with it, and it’s relaxed feeling. The change in the air we breathe feels like a deep breath of perspective for me. It’s a time of year that I feel like it’s ok to sit down and rest (metaphorically). Fall is my time-out, used to sort of re-group and enjoy where I am. I can allow myself not to feel pressured to make big strides as I focus on family, God’s love, and rest. I look forward to bowls of hot comfort foods with the ones I love and snuggling with a quilt on the couch for laughter and the feeling of slowing down, even though the holiday season is so busy.

The wind is howling outside and the only dread I feel is for the grocery shopping that simply must be done! I had a wonderful visit with my mom, aunts, grandma and other family for the last few days, and it really just felt like the holidays are already here. I can’t wait to share a feast of Thanksgiving with those I am so thankful for!

This will likely be the last Thanksgiving and Christmas with our son still living at home, and I will treasure every second. God is good. Even when life is far from perfect – especially then, I think. Right now, with the changes at my husband’s job, we are not assured of an income for more than a few months, but I feel strangely at peace. I know that it is my assurance in my savior that allows me to feel so secure – nothing matters more than eternity – and I know what eternity I have in store.

It’s funny how I allow fear to consume me at times, and how I feel fearless at others. We go through mountains and valleys regardless of our actions and reactions, I suppose. I guess I’m just now mature enough to see that. I know that I am blessed and I feel that I can hardly stand how much I’m blessed considering how little I deserve it, sometimes.

Life is beautiful – and sometimes it’s ugliness makes it all the more lovely when you know that God is in control.





The State of Things

14 10 2011

I’m completely out of coffee this morning. My loving hubby has offered to run out and grab me a cup, so I’m waiting for him to finish his workout first. Hahaha. At least I can smile about that, right? I’ve been depressed for some time, as I made the decision not to go for that expensive BS in Alternative Medicine that holds no great promise for a job to pay back 60K in student loans. Smart – I know. So I didn’t register for classes; the summer was simply not enough time to sort it out, since I didn’t take summer off last year and so have not had a break from school through a run of semesters: Spring, Summer, Fall, Spring. Whew! What was I thinking?

I’m breaking now, though, like it or not! And I didn’t like it one bit, at first. After starting on some herbal therapy, though, I’m having a different outlook. I still am not sure of the path I’ll end up taking, but I feel better, and am looking forward to finishing some unfinished projects in the weeks to come.

Those few weeks of public school at the end of the last academic year didn’t scare my daughter into staying home one more year – not that I wanted it to scare her, really – just hoped it’d be less than she’d hoped. So she’s back in this fall, and I am all alone again…without classes for myself! It’s been very hard. I’ve continued with the belly dancing, missing class a few times when I was way in the dumps. I’ve taken a quilt-as-you-go class and finished a small lap quilt with a great deal of satisfaction. I’ve loved quilts for as long as I can remember, putting them together for my babies when they were small, from the directions in books and just my own common sense – no masterpieces in the small collection, but they hold memories for me and for the kids, and they love them, despite the fact that they don’t show great skill. I’ve learned some very useful things now, and have the resources to take classes, and of course there’s the internet with its video tutorials and such to turn to – so this go at learning to quilt should prove to build real skill if I work at it. And I think I will.

We’re watching our children suffer the harms of growing up, offering advice and lots of hugs, wishing we could just make it all go away. Sometimes I really can understand why people join these eccentric communes and alternative societies, because what they are searching for is truth in people and real community. That never turns out well, so I guess I’ll keep treading water in suburbia.

I’ve always been a great patriot, but as much as I try to deny it, there’s less and less to be patriotic about. It makes me sad, what America has sunken to. History in schools is certainly not the same history I taught my kids from home. Now they focus on whether Alexander the Great was homosexual, which presidents had STDs, and label the Sons of Liberty as terrorists. It truly makes me want to vomit. Americans today are always asking what their country can do for them. Parents don’t parent any more – they send the kids to school all day and put them in activities that use up every evening so they don’t have to parent; by the time the day is done, they just plop them in bed. No wonder todays kids are angry, confused and expect everything to revolve around them and life to be easy. To make matters worse, God, who offers refuge, love, and guidance, has been shoved into a nice little box so as to not make us feel guilty for our choices or afraid of the consequences of our actions. No wonder this country is spinning out of control, and on a downward spiral at the same time. Honestly, I do feel like I don’t even belong in this time. I know that technically, I do, because God put me here, but it is impossible even to try to witness to people these days – Christians cannot tell people the truth, not just because they don’t want to hear it, which has always been the case, but because now, they are actually accused of being judgmental and closed-minded. They don’t realize that these are not Christians’ opinions – they’re God’s!

I try not to get all worked up, but when my children are bullied or hurt because they are conscientious and my husband abused because he has a good work ethic and Christians are labeled as fanatics when they speak of Godly values, it just makes me angry. What’s wrong with people?