Thursday, September 30, 2010

Homecoming approaches...

I don't really have anything to write about right now because I am distracted...I have a fun weekend ahead of me, filled with friends I don't see too often and definitely don't see all at the same time!  It's Homecoming week!  I loved this week during undergrad.  It is a beatiful, summer-like Thursday evening right now and if it were 2002, 2003, 2004, or 2005 (the years I was in undergrad) I would be unstoppable right now.  My friends and I would be amped and ready to have a blast!  If we were underage, money and a shopping list would be discreetly slipped to a 21+ person and if I were of age I would be helping my younger friends (usually my sister was the negotiator) get their night started.  There would be float building combined with dance parties, long dinners at the Turf, homecoming show tickets for sale, skit rehearsals for the homecoming show and other fun nonsense.  Something that was nowhere to be found was books or studying. 

By the way, although I was never nominated for the homecoming court like my younger cousin, I was in the show once, when I was a sophomore in college. Our skit was a little caper about stealing hamburgers or something.  It didn't make any sense.  We are supposed to be chicken McNuggets.  I don't know why we are wearing eye black like football players.  This photo makes me laugh every time I encounter it.  

OK, you know that when I get nostalgic I keep carring on and I guess I was wrong at the beginning of this post. I, of course, do have something to write.  It just doesn't pertain to our life, homeownership, or anything specific like that.  Oh well, whatever!  Check back early next week for a full recap of the weekend.  Well, the appropriate parts anyway.  

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Shooting Range

Yesterday afternoon Justin called me and asked me if I wanted to go to a nearby shooting range that is located about 20 miles north of here so he could sight in his hunting rifle.  Although this sort of activity isn't usually something I enjoy, it was really nice out and the trees are turning lovely shades of gold and red so I thought it would be fun. 

Here is Justin getting down to business.  That green case is full of his "reloads" that I mentioned awhile back. 

This attractive shot is to show the earplugs that Justin so kindly bought for me before we left.  They look like headphones! 

This photo kind of gives me the creeps, but it also makes me laugh.  I don't look too uncomfortable, do I?  Well, I was.  I don't really like shooting.  I don't like the noise or the way guns kick back.  Oh well, it was an enjoyable evening.  We were the only ones there so there was no one to laugh at me. 

Speaking of the leaves changing, this whole city is so beautiful right now.  I want to take photos so badly but it makes me uncomfortable to be walking around snapping random pictures.  I'm afraid poeple will think I'm a creep or something.  I tried to take some pictures of the trees and houses across the street in a discreet fashion but the pictures didn't turn out.  I have never seen it like this because we moved here in late October after the leaves had fallen and last year there was some sort of wacky phenomenon where it got really cold really fast and then it got warm again and the still green trees dropped thier leaves before they could turn.  I remember posting about it because it happened to the tree in my front yard (which is still mostly green).  I am frustrated because I won't get to see how it looks when it changes.

I won't get to see how it looks because I am going to start working in Fargo again for a few months.  I start tomorrow.  I was supposed to start two weeks ago but there have been delays beyond my control.  I'm glad to be working again, but I am pretty despondent about not being home for the fun things that will arise in the next few months.  I won't be here to decorate my front step with pumpkins or for trick or treating or to decorate for Christmas.  And of course I will be very lonely for Allan and feel guilty about not being around him.  Last time I think he forgot me.  (Of course I will feel lonely for Justin also, but I will see him every weekend and he can actually communicate with me!)  But at least there will be fun things to look forward to in Fargo such as football games and tailgating and the fun and comaraderie that accompanies hunting.  And I will enjoy the sprawling flatness of Fargo.  People make fun of it but it feels familiar and welcoming to me.  I will also enjoy the shopping in Fargo.  While it can't compare to a major metro area it is about 85% better than the shopping here.  So, back to my sister's basement I go...sigh...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I Thought It Would Never End...

Does anyone know what this picture is?  It is construction workers gathering up orange cones.  Yes, the orange cones that have been all over the place on our street since the snow melted.  They are being hauled away! 

The street is open again!  It's such a pleasure not to have to weave around huge piles of dirt, parked machinery and huge pits cut out of the pavement.  I won't have to worry about getting ready to leave the house only to find a huge truck blocking my driveway.  And people besides construction workers get to see my nice flowers!  It actually isn't completely needs to be resurfaced and painted but the gates are gone. 

Although I am happy, I forgot how loud this street is when it has traffic.  Kind of annoying.  It is an emergency route, but the ambulance and fire truck traffic hasn't resumed yet.  Although the noise is kind of a pain it is nice to live on an emergency route in the winter time because the snow is always cleared immediately.  But...I don't want to think about that yet.  The high forecast for today is in the 80's.  Keep in mind that it snowed about 10 days ago.  Crazy ND. 

Monday, September 27, 2010

Baby Quilt

OK, I will show you what I gave Roommate for her baby shower gift!  It was a quilt and I think it is very cute.  I like it so much I wanted to keep it but that would be selfish of me and what would I do with a miniature quilt? 

This was my first attempt at a quilt with blocks of any other shape besides squares.  The pattern is called "tumblers" because they are shaped like a tumbler/drinking glass.  I suppose you could call it "trapezoids" if you wanted.  You can make them short and wide or tall and skinny.  Mine were, if I remember correctly, 6 inches at the wide end and 4 inches at the narrow end.  I tacked my indimidation about using a rotary cutter and now realize how lame that was.  It is really not that hard. 

I chose the aqua and red combination because we don't know what gender the baby is.  It was challenging not to make it overly feminine because alot of fabric, regardless of the color, is floral.  There is one floral pattern in here but oh well.  Babies don't know what is going on anyway when it comes to what textile patterns are socially acceptable for their gender.  I mostly wanted to pick attractive fabrics.  I like the contrast of the two colors. 

This is a close up shot of the quilting.  I wish I could say that I quilted it with painstaking detail as I watched TV at night.  However, that is not the case.  My grandmother, Phyllis, has a machine with a long arm intended for quilting so I sent it to her in the mail and she probably quilted this whole thing in 30 minutes or less.  She's kind of a pro!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Baby Shower

Although I am 27 years old, very few of my friends have had babies.  Also, I am on the older end of my relatives so I don't have any older siblings or cousins who have had babies (I'm speaking of my side of the family...Justin's on the younger end of his relatives and his siblings are close to our age and have decided to start families and give up the selfish lifestyle Justin and I live, where we do whatever we want and Justin spends his money on hunting supplies and spends quiet nights watching hours upon hours of sports without interruption and I drive around in my car blasting obscene rap music so loud that I usually don't hear my phone if it rings and swill mass quantities of caffeinated beverages and beer).  Therefore, I haven't been to many baby showers compared to some other women my age and I haven't ever thrown one without a responsible "adult" taking care of the details.  (I hosted one for my sisters-in-law last spring but Justin's mom took care of most of the details involving the menu and preparation). 

Well, my friend Ashley, the person I often refer to on here as "Roommate" because she was my roommate for three years in college, is expecting a baby in November.  We love each other.  I was in her wedding in October of 2005 and she was in mine in 2007.  She is friends with my sister as well, and we have taken over her house for our wedding related needs several times over the years (she hosted the pre-party for my bachelorette party and we set up a makeshift hair salon in her kitchen the morning of Andrea's wedding) so we decided to have a small baby shower for her last night. (Well, we decided to have it last month but it took place last night). We chose a Thursday because no one had a free weekend and it worked out perfectly!  We had a "Bison Baby" theme because the baby's gender is going to be a surprise, for us and for the parents, so the probably would have lead us the the gender neutral colors of green and yellow anyway!  The food was similar to food one would eat while tailgating at a football game.  Andrea grilled kababs and we had some chips and various cream cheese based dips on the menu.  We kept the beverages non-alcoholic because almost 1/2 of the guests were pregnant and it was a week night anyway. So, unlike real tailgating there were no 32 oz. plastic mugs of beer. 

We played a game of my own invention called "Baby Names:  Real or Fake".  I made a sheet with a list of about 50 baby names, all absolutely ridiculous or overly trendy or spelled like the person giving the name might be illiterate.  Some the names came from hospital and newspaper birth announcements websites and some of them I made up.  It was a hit and very hilarious. 

There we are, the roommates!

Ashley/Roommate got alot of great gifts and everyone seemed to have fun so I guess it was a success!  I must admit, baby things are so cute.  I especially love the fuzzy little sleepers with feet and little cardboard books about baby animals. 

That gift is from me...I wrapped it in red, white and blue to make it patriotic because we have an inside joke about overtly patriotic things.  Not patriotism in general of course (that's good).  We used to make fun of cliched patriotic country songs that were rampant in the years after 9/11.  Mostly because the songs were musically bad and trying to exploit tragedy to make money.  Haha.  Yeah, I know, so funny.  I can imagine everyone thinking "Ummm OK, those songs were bad, but I guess I never thought about it that much."  Anyway, that box stood out in the pile of cute pastel boxes and bags, and not in a good way!  In that box was a quilt that i made!  I finished when I finished those other ones I showed awhile back but Roommate reads this sometimes so I didn't want her to see it before the shower.  I will showcase my work in a later post. 

Have a good weekend everyone!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Photo Edits

I was experimenting with my camera software tonight becasue the photos often look muted or blurry.  I have read the instructions and tried the settings and I can't seem to get the look I want.  Since most of my photos are of Allan, I edited some of him and now you get to see them!  Lucky you! 

This one is my favorite.  I moved the contrast setting up the the higher end of the scale and it looks much more vivid.  He sits on the back of the couch and stares out the window like this most of the time. 

I caught him with his tongue out!  Haha.

He is laying haphazardly on a bunch of crap I left on the floor in this looks like an issue of House Beautiful magazine (I always leave magazines on the floor and Justin hates it) and one of his toys.  Lazy cat.   

Big stretch after an exhausting afternoon of staring out the window. 

I didn't take this...Justin sent it to me as a picture message.  He likes to recline himself against the wall in certain areas of the house, expecially one certain spot in the kitchen and this spot in the basement.  He's so cute, if you like this sort of thing!  

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Fall on the Way

Although, scientifically speaking, it is still summer, there is autumn in the air.  ( I just looked it up an the autumnal equinox is on September 23 this year, so we have three days left of Summer!)  It really doesn't feel like summer anymore.  Last Friday, a few slushy snowflakes fell overnight here in Bis.  I wasn't here to see it with my own eyes, so I don't have any pictures to horrify anyone who might be reading this in a Southern climate.  Today the temperature went back into the typical 60's, so winter is not quite imminent yet.  I believe it will probably get hot again because last year we moved into this house at the end of September and it was hot like July.  Of course it was, when I was climbing three flights of stairs all day, every day, for two weeks. 

Although I love summer and warm weather and sandals and all of that, I always enjoy the change of the seasons.  I even enjoy the first snow (the FIRST snow, the one that happens in November or December, not the feet and mountains of snow that fall into April around here).  The slight chill in the air is invigorating.  A few weeks ago I put on jeans for the first time since early June (when you are not working you can get buy with not putting on long pants for three months.  It is great.) and realized I missed them!  And they still fit, fortunately.  Although I love an excuse to buy new clothes, my penchant for expensive jeans would make replacing my collection cost prohibitive. 

An especially fun fall activity for both Justin and I is tailgating at Bison football games.  Saturday was the first home game of the season and it was a lovely, crisp day.  I recall that it was really hot on this same weekend last year and it was nice to be able to wear a cozy sweatshirt instead of shorts and a t-shirt!  For tailgating, warmer clothes just seem right!  Almost everyone I know was at or was invited to a wedding this weekend, so most of my usual drinking buddies (I am referring to my female friends who like to tailgate and then watch the game at the bar while our  husbands/boyfriends/other friends watch the game in the stadium) were not available.  It was still alot of fun, but I wasn't in a photographer-like mood so I will have to do a more extensive tailgating post later in the year.  Here are a few that I took...

That is our friends' baby daughter, Greta, at her first Bison game.  She liked to touch Justin's prickly face.

I watched an entire game in person for the first time in several years (I think the last one I watched was when the Bison played the Gophers in 2007).  It was pretty fun.  I'd do it again!  It would be nice if beer in moderation was sold in the dome though...

Friday, September 17, 2010

Old House Gripe

I don't have alot of complaints about this house, but I have one.  It is one that is shared by anyone who lives in a house built before, oh, I'd say the 80's...there is not enough closet space!  AAAAhhhh it drives me crazy.  I have only had adequate closet space for one year of my life, and that was when I lived in an overpriced one-bedroom apartment during my first year of law school.  It had a walk in closet and I lived alone so didn't have to share any closet or cabinet with anyone.  I know that in past decades there wasn't Old Navy and TJ Maxx and other places to buy very cheap, mass produced shoes and clothes.  For example, I probably have 20 pairs of brighty colored flat slip on shoes and I don't think I paid for than $20 for any of them.  Most of them were under $10.  Because I don't wear any one pair every day, they don't wear out and so they stay with me for years.  And keep building.  The same is true for clothing.  (I'm not saying all of my clothes and shoes are cheap...I have some good quality items as well).  This means that every closet, every shelf, every drawer is overflowing.  And I get rid of items all the time.  I never hesitate to give things to thrift stores or charity, or to throw worn out things away.  There is just never enough room and it drives me crazy!  It's not about the size of the house, either.  The house I lived in from the time I was 7 until I moved away from home as an adult (I shouldn't say I have moved away because alot of my crap is still there!) is a cavernous 6 bedroom farmhouse with bedrooms much larger than those built in new houses.  Storage remains a problem, however.  Every closet is tiny.  One of the rooms doesn't even have it's own closet!  My dad added a door that allows it to share with another room's closet when we moved in there.   My dad grew up in that house, and after he and his siblings were gone in the 80's my grandparents resorted to turning two of the unused bedrooms into huge storage closets.  It's a battle to prevent that from happening again. 

I greatly reduced my childhood belongings a over Christmas break a few years ago and brought four huge black garbage bags of old clothes and random crap to a thrift store.  Another two bags went in the trash.  The excess closet space in my old room was immediately filled with gift wrapping supplies and coats by my mom.  In the two little bathrooms there are no cabinets to speak of besides the ones under the sinks.  In the bathroom belonging to us (the kids) there is a little decorative gardening table that is covered with the items that would be in a cupboard, such as my brother's 5 cans of shaving cream that are all half used and cans of hair product that date back to 2002.  Cleaning is infuriating because every time you do so, you have to move all of that crap around and if one thing gets knocked over it is like a domino effect. 

One might say that it would be nice to have a large attic and a large basement to be filled with excess crap.  However, both the basement and attic environments are not suitable for storing anything you really care about.  The basement is cool and damp like a cellar and that attic has no climate conrol and turns into a sauna during summer and gets so cold during winter that everything has a layer of frost over it.  It's a good thing rubbermaid tubs were invented to protect all of our Christmas decorations and old toys!  (Oh, the toys...they are everywhere!  (Just waiting for grandchildren, right Mother?!)  Everywhere you look there are toy tractors and cars that belong to my brother.  There are boxes of old children's books and barbies.  There is a huge tub of legos somewhere and bags of stuffed animals.   My nephew visited the farm one night and thought the attic was the most magical, fascinating place he had ever seen!  At least someone appreciates it and doesn't see it as a filthy, dusty, freezing/steaming room full of crap. 

What I am trying to say is that I get really frustrated with not having enough space and I know many other people feel the same frustrations with their not-so-new houses.  Not living space, of course, but storage space.  I hate  that my clothes are always mashed together and when all of our hanging shirts are clean there is not room for one more hanger in the closet.  I hate that my jeans and sweatshirts and sweaters are piled so high on the little shelves that I can't reach the ones at the top and if I try to grab one in the middle the whole tower falls over and I have to refold.  I hate that my shoes are piled up and get scuffed by other shoes when I dig for the pair I want. 

I had to face this issue a few days ago when I decided to address a problem in our coat closet.  This closet is also where we keep shoes and it is a disaster.  We had a cheap, pressed wood shoe shelf on the floor in there that had mountains of shoes piled on top of it.  It buckled under the weight and the wood cracked.  It was a sliver waiting to happen and also the screws were poking out.  I decided I couldn't take it anymore so I went to Target and bought this new metal one... looks so pristine...with most of the shoes gone and half of the coats removed.  I have a photo of the mountain of shoes but it was kind of gross looking so I will spare you.  It's must better...for now. 

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Justin's Interests

I know I mention my own hobbies and interests on here alot more than Justin's, so today I am going to share one of his with all of you!  He has taken up reloading over the last few years.  Reloading refers to the reloading of shotgun shells, or should I say hulls, that are used in a hunting or recreational shooting context.  I really don't know what I'm talking about right now, but, according to my internet research,  I know the terms "wad" "primer" and "load" are important vocabulary words to reloaders.  There are different recipes (yes, recipes) of what type of gunpowder and how much to use for different types of hulls that go with different types of guns.  Apparently you can improve your shooting accuracy after some practice with reloading and many hunters feel that they can make better ammunition than they can buy in a store.  I even came across a "recipe" contest where reloaders could submit their favorite recipe! 

Many reloaders feel that they save money bye reloading instead of buying new shells.  However, I believe you have to shoot alot of rounds (a guy on a website said you would have to be like Rambo) to really save alot.  Who cares, though, if it is something enjoyable for the reloader?  If Justin thinks this is a fun activity to share and talk about with his friends and relatives then that's great.  Well, it's great as long as he follows all safety precautions and my house stays free from gun powder related mishaps!  (Don't worry, when it comes to guns he is very safe).

Here is the workbench he built in the basement where he does reloading.  He wired in the outlets and the floursescent light above. 

Another view.  I might have featured this work bench in the past but if I can't remember you probably can't either!

On a related note, when I arrived home from the Y this morning the mail had arrived and I saw that something big was in the box.  I thought, "Oh great, another phone book...who even used one anymore anyway?"  But was a limited fall edition of a Cabela's catalogue that said "Thank you to a very special customer" (Justin has a Cabela's Visa).  It has a hard cover like a text book!  He will get hours of entertainment from this thing.  It's kind of like the old JC Penney Christmas catalogue that was filled with pictures of toys. 

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Wreath on the Way!

Last night I was in the basement playing with Allan and I heard the doorbell ring.  I was confused because this is not a typical occurence and it had already been rang once that day by on of the city engineers working on our street construction.  I could see a man standing out on the sidewalk leading to the house.  Kind of weird.  I understood when I went to the door, however.  The main door was open and through the screen I could see a brown uniform shirt and a skinny little arm.  It was a boy scout!  The man on the sidewalk was his dad.  He was so shy!  He said something along the lines of HImynameisstuart...mumblemumble...troop123mumblemuble...then he held up a sheet with various Christmas wreaths and garlands.  It is time for the traditional boy scout wreath sale!  I haven't been asked since I have had my own residence, apartments or house.  Kids in my hometown used to sell wreaths but I had kind of forgotten about it.  The dad said they lived one block over from our street and Stuart said he went to the middle school nearbye (middle school?  I would have guessed 5th grade! Poor little guy!)  I caved right away and bought one (of course it's not here will be delivered in November).  I caved because I love Christmas decorations.  Also, I know that Justin was a boy scout member as a child and would probably like to give back.  I wanted to reward Stuart (yes, his name was Stuart!  He was skinny and had red hair!) for stepping outside of his shell and selling something to a stranger.  I have been through many school and organization fundraisers and I was even nervous asking people I knew to buy my goods (although we never sold anything as appealing as wreaths...the worst was when my basketball team sold overpriced bath products and lotions and when they arrived the bottles were so small I was embarassed to deliver them!  The best was the "Band Candy" aka World's Finest Chocolate that we sold as students in the music program.  People actually wanted that stuff.  I wish I had some Mint Meltaways right now!) so I was impressed that he would sell to someone he didn't know.  I also liked that the dad stood back and let Stuart sell all on his own while supervising from a safe distance instead of making it easy for him and just taking the order form to work with him and doing the work himself.  He even let Stuart come into my house on his own so I could write a check and fill out the form (I understand that parents are overprotective these days and many might now allow this).  I chose a 22 inch wreath for $21.00 and when I filled out the form I saw that he had been to my neigbor's house and he had bought an 18 incher!  I knew he was working in the garage so after the salesman left I went over and teased him about how our wreath was going to be bigger! 

I understand that scouts, both girls and boys, are deviating from the door to door tradition because of unsafe neigborhoods and overprotective parents.  This is why the girl scouts are always selling cookies from tables in front of grocery stores.  I'm glad I live in a neigborhood where people still feel safe letting thier kids ring doorbells and talk to people with the intent of spreading Christmas cheer through fundraising efforts!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Happy Anniversary Andrea and Kirk!

At this time two years ago I was sitting in my friend's kitchen/temporary salon with my hair in pin curls, drinking champagle and stuffing my face with donuts.  It was my sister's wedding day!  Today is Kirk and Andrea's 2nd anniversary. I wouldn't normally mention such an anniversary but I was looking at the photos and laughing at them so i thought I would make a post about it.  Also, I don't know what else to write about since our weekend consisted of Justin going to a bachelor party (who wants to know details about that?) and me and Andrea and our cousin Katie roaming around downtown Fargo bar hopping (We had a pitcher then another then a shot then another beer and then we walked here then there and then we met the guys and then we got a cab and then we ate a bunch of junk and that's it!) 

Awww, a lovely walk in the park, where a photographer happened to be cute.   There was a few rain showers that day, but nothing's a lucky wedding day!

My dad and brother got bored during photos, I guess, and decided they had to text.  Haha who do you need to talk to that wasn't already there?

For transportation for the wedding party between the church and reception they booked this vitange trolley.  It was lovely.  When we were pulling out of the church parking lot we hit a bump and I ended up with champagne spilled down the front of my dress.  A whole glass.  Which caused a dark stain down the whole front of my dress. was a huge buzzkill.  I realized that the fabric was very fast to dry, however, so at the first bar I went into the bathroom and put water on the whole front of the dress and it dried stain free!  That was a close one...

I love this picture!  It's so silly...

An eleagant bride, along with her dignified wedding party members!  Hahaha...I think I was in the bathroom trying to fix my dres when this took place!  I steered clear of this behavior before the reception because I didn't want to be slurring and rambling during my matron of honor speech.  It was a good strategy!  I did have a dark red shot with the other bridesmaids though...

Oh, look, the bride and groom!  Haha, JK, I just wanted to make Pete freak out!  (It's my brother).  I wish he would get a girlfriend so we could have another wedding!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Sewing with Allan

During my recent sewing exploits I took several pictures of Allan's behavior while I was trying to accomplish something. He was a huge pest. In order to get anything done I had to just let him do whatever annoying thing he wanted to do for a few minutes until he got bored and went to sleep.

Here he is tangling himself in the back of a quilt as I was trying to press the seam down the middle.

He loves to burrow under blankets and this quilt top was no exception. I was trying to put the front and back together and he kept messing it up.

More of his nonsense.
For these quilts, I tied them instead of quilting with a needle and thread (too much detail for me!) and I happened to have my old "friendship bracelet" kit from elementary school here! My friends, sister, and I used to make friendship bracelets out of embroidery floss. I learned many techniques at the various camps I attended. I found it when I was cleaning my room at the farm this summer and decided I wanted to make some bracelets! I never did but I was glad to have all the embroidery floss for my quilts! Allan immediately started tearing the box apart.

That blue thing is a plastic spinner tool intended for winding floss onto the cards. I recall that it didn't work as well as just using your hands but it looked cool! Allan is knawing on it here for some reason. Brat.

Then he started pulling out the cards of thread and bracelets. Oh well, no damage done to anything! I should enjoy his kitten-like behavior while it lasts!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Another Shirt Quilt

I previously said that I had finished another quilt. I will show it off...NOW! I made this quilt out of old shirts and other garments combined with scraps I had. The only thing I bought was the batting! I decided to do this because I was sentimental about some of the clothes. Don't think I'm a clothes hoarder or anything...I give away several bags of old clothes each year to thrift stores due to my limited closet space and penchant for clearance shopping at places like Old Navy and TJ Maxx. (By the way, if anyone in the Fargo area has anything to donate I recommend the New Life Center. It is a multi-denominational rescue mission. They have a thrift store but they also give items to homeless people at the mission and people in the community. I was moved when I was shopping there a few years ago for some old picture frames for a project and saw a little 8x11 sign by the door that said "All toys free to a good home". They give toys to kids for free! I also saw a family that looked like they had recently immigrated trying on winter coats. Can you imagine coming to Fargo and not having a winter coat? I immediately thought of the rarely worn fleece jackets and old coats that I had been hauling around for years and how much nicer they were than what was there. It was easy to let them go when I thought of another young woman finding a nice Columbia among the old crap on the rack.'s a good place to donate if your closets are overflowing.)

I did it the easy way and tied it instead of quilting it. I can't imagine myself with a needle and thread actually quilting. I love this thing! It might look kind of ugly, but each square has meaning to me (well, most of them do)! Let me explain...

So many fabrics! Where do I start...that yellow plaid was a shirt I had in high school. I bought it when I went shopping before my basketball team went to State in 1999. I guess my mom thought the event required some new items in my wardrobe! (We did have many events to dress up for in addition to the games, such as banquets and hospitality rooms). I loved it but it was a size L, the size I chose when I was in high school. Everything was baggy and wide and now I know better so I cut up the shirt!
That solid turquoise fabric was from a pair of "scrub" pants I bought at a KD convention. I thought they were cute but they were actually pretty unflattering. They had a long crotch and strangely shaped legs. Of course they were...they were real scrub pants like drs. and nurses wear! They worked well with the other colors in the quilt at least.
The squares with the little daisies were from a sarong my aunt gave me for a present when I was still lifeguarding. It was a long peice of fabric that was meant to be wrapped around your waist and tied. I loved it because it was from Old Navy before Old Navy had infiltrated ND and was still a novelty. It also made a very cute addition to this quilt!
I wore this plaid shirt alot during my last two years of college. The first time I wore it, and I believe the reason I bought it, was on my 21st birthday in 2004. I was so excited to turn 21 and I loved this shirt. I still do...I almost didn't cut it up even though I haven't worn it for probably 4 years!

Oh, the Hawaiian dress...I actually sewed that disaster myself for a Hawaiian themed dance. It was the first garment I had sewn since home-ec. If anyone has ever used a pattern, you know that the size charts on the envelopes are wonky. Not being aware of this, I cut this thing about three sizes bigger than my normal size because the chart said a person who wore my size should have a 25 inch waist or some nonsense like that. I haven't been that size since 6th grade so I sized it up. Well, of course the dress ended up being nicely assembled but huge and my mom had to fix it. After that it fit perfectly! I think the pattern industry needs to reevaluate their sizing. I don't think it has changed since girdles were a part of womens' daily attire.

This shirt was from the palace of cheapness known as Old Navy. I bought it the summer after my Freshman year of college and wore it when I went with my soon to be KD housemates to Minneapolis for the weekend to go to our friends' birthday party. It was a blast and afterwards I knew that the rest of my college years were going to be filled with fun times and friends.

There's me and Roommate and the shirt in a more business like setting!

This picture was also from the time around my 21st birthday. In this picture my friend Jill and I are wearing the same shirt. These shirts were similar to my 21st birthday outfit. I think Western must have been a trend at that time.

Oh, my toga...this toga party took place the spring of my Freshman year. We girls went to Walmart to buy fabric for our togas and I bought 6 yards because I didn't know what I was doing. Well, 6 yards is alot of cloth. I think I cut off 3 to wrap around myself. Lucky for me there was enough of the toga to use for the back of the quilt, as well as for some squares! Perfect! I believe my sister wore my toga for one of the high school homecoming theme days the next year. I think its funny that I actually owned a garment that was specifically a toga! Who does that?

Awwww...Bergen on the beautiful west coast of Norway...The shirt I'm wearing was cheap and way to trendy to last but I held on to it because it reminded me of my trip to Norway. It didn't have alot of fabric to work with, but I got a few squares of the pretty embroidery.
The quilt is very light and soft and perfect for sitting on the couch. I'm glad I decided to do it while I had time on my hands!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day

Our Labor Day weekend was pretty fun...OK, it was really fun! Of course, we had a wedding. I think I have been invited to weddings this weekend for the last five years or something like that. This year the wedding was that of a friend of Justin's (and mine as well, but they know each other as hunting buddies. Justin's cousin was the best man). It was a fun small town wedding with a dance at the legion and lots of beer flowing. What made the night really fun was the Bison game! During the dance I texted my brother to find out the score and he said it was 6-3 at the beginning of the 4th quarter and the Bison were winning! They were playing the University of Kansas Jayhawks, a Big 12 team that expected this game to be a joke. As soon as we found out the score we went to the pickup to listen to the radion. Hahahaha upset! The Bison won! We were really excited.

On Sunday night I went to Fargo to attend a concert. Me and my brother had plans to go and had purchased tickets and my sister decided to go at the last minute. We saw the Gaslight Anthem, a rock group that is up and coming. They have three albums out and are starting to get noticed. Click on the link below to open a video of them performing one of my favorite songs they sing.

I love this song. It's so intense and sounds so unique! Their live performance was really captivating. The lead singer is really charismatic. I think he's pretty attractive, as for as rock star types go!
This is a picture of the whole group.

This is the lead singer. At the concert in Fargo he wore a tight black t-shirt with rolled up sleeves like a hood from the 50's. I liked the style of the whole group. Very manly.
I love when musical groups that I like come to the area. It doesn't happen very often so I like to experience them when I can. It is fun when the concerts are at smaller venues as opposed to stadiums. The Gaslight Anthem had alot of energy, and talent of course, and let the performance speak for itself without any fancy sets or special effects. The tickets were pretty cheap as well. I enjoy watching old music videos on Youtube of groups from the past when they were trying to make a name for themselves and they fascinate me. I always wish I could have seen Bruce Springsteen in the late 1970's or Eminem when he was still unknown. I went to Pat Green, the country artist, with Roommate in college in some little club in Minneapolis and I still think fondly of how fun it was and how it was so loud and kind of like a house party in college (in a good way). I also saw Dropkick Murphys, a very loud punk band, last winter and it was the most fun I've had at a concert. I listen to their live cd in my car and wish I could be at the concert all over again. I always wonder if the groups I am will be huge someday and I wish more would give ND a spot on their tours!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


I was going to show off another quilt I made today, but I had to show this instead! Something decent actually came from our garden! Justin was mowing and doing yard work last night and decided to try to dig up some of the potato plants. What is in the bucket was the produce of four plants. We grilled some of them last night and they were delicious! We also ate a few carrots. They are not very good though. Well, they taste good but they don't look good. They are thick and short. I think they didn't get thinned enough. I felt like I pulled out so many earlier this summer but I guess it wasn't enough.

Also, the tomato plants have been producing. They came from a greenhouse though, so I can't take all the credit!

Here's an Allan picture...that brown thing is a cheap scratching toy that is made of cardboard. The cardboard refills are really cheap so you can replace the ones in the frame if they get scratched to pieces. It came with a bag of catnip and, as you can see, Allan is attracted to it!