Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Blog! Check it out.

OK, so this is why I have that CHAO syndrome (Can't have anyone over). My living room is overcrowded with projects. So I've decided that I'm going to put an end to it. I have to get this Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt finished by a week from yesterday. I signed a contract! Yes, I did! so that's the plan. forget the fact that I broke my thumb nail a week ago and have been waiting for it to heal and grow out before doing any quilting on it. But I do need to get it finished. This other picture:
yeah, this one, is the other side of the room and this whole pile is unfinished projects. It will all be gone if I can finish these projects. Boy that would be nice! Mostly in that pile is about a dozen bags worth of plarn in various colors. Check out previous posts to find the definition of plarn!

As I finish each project I am blogging about it on my new blog. check out the links section of the side bar for the link to my new blog. I am going to try to finish one project every day for a whole year. My friend's think I'm nuts, but they don't realize what kinds of things I have in this house. There are lots of things that I can finish in one day if I work on them diligently. There are other things that I can break down into one day segments and finish one whole section of them in one day. Other things I will have to work on for several hours and then finish them some other time. But I think I have enough to cover a whole year. I have an open ended list. It's going to be interesting.

On other fronts: We are planning a nice New Years Eve with friends, Vic and Sharon. We are planning on seeing the movie Grease at the State and then staying to watch the cherry drop! Sounded like fun so that's our big plans, we will see what happens. I'll post on Sunday after the event.

Tawni is in the throws of planning for her big move. Interquilten is moving across the street into a nice building that is bigger than the space we have now. I think it's going to be a very good move, the new building has more room and is a much nicer space, more character and more personality than the generic place we are in right now. Moving day is the 12th of January and we will probably be re-opened on the 14th in the new space.

Meanwhile, Jeff switched us from Showtime (after the series "Dexter" was over), and now we have HBO and Cinemax. It's amazing, we've been watching movies every night with this package but only watched Dexter with the last one. We are also catching up on the new seasons of True Blood and Big Love. Very Dramatic! My whole family loves True Blood, we laughed we cried, we cringed while watching the beginning credits! Yeah pretty gross. But I highly recommend it! It's like Twilight for adults!

OK, OK, so I haven't been walking. But hey, it's winter, and I'm on Coumadin which thins the blood and I'm having a really hard time staying warm. Or maybe it's because this is the first year I've had to endure the cold in my new body weight. At any rate I think a good morning walk would help me sweat and warm up. I just wish there was room in my living room for the treadmill. Look at those pictures again. No there really isn't.

Ok, I'll talk with you all later,
Cindy K-K
Haunting at home for now.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Guess what I've been doing? Good guess! Making Christmas gifts! I am picturing none of them, after all, those of you who are getting them wouldn't be surprised if you saw them on my Blog! Well, my mother might not and she got several of them.

Anyway, I'm also doing some of those "Plarn" bags. I've been making plarn for days, the plastic bags creating havoc in my living room. This is by far the weirdest project I've ever done. Making Plarn! I spent two full days just sorting plastic bags and cutting them into one inch strips. Then off and on I've been making them into plarn. For a very good tutorial on how to do this go to this website:

So these are three of the bags I've finished this week. I seem to be able to acquire an over abundance of white bags with various colored print. Mostly with green print (Oleson's, Tom's, and Family Video) and Red print (Thank you bags given out nearly everywhere.) In order to get the white bag I sorted the strips after they were cut and put all the white ones with no printing on it into a separate container. Then as I made the plarn for this if I ran into any that had even a small amount of printing I put it into a different container so that I could keep the plarn for this project pristine. What I didn't realize though was the difference in the various bags. Even white areas of the bags are subtly colored by the dying process which can easily be seen in the subtle variations of this bag. But still it's pretty unique. I have been telling my bag gatherers (and you know who you are) that I have enough white bags for now and only want them to save me their colored bags. I use them for the stripe around the top as in the green and red bags pictured. I have several blue ones, and now that Walmart in TC is a Super Walmart I will probably be getting more groceries there and getting more white bags with the blue print. And Best buy where Jeff buys some of his computer equipment gives out blue bags. One more project on the horizon!

But all this aside. I have to get back to my applique projects. I plan to do that tomorrow. I have three blocks that need to get done for the Guild Applique project, and then I also have one block that needs to get done before Saturday for the Shop Applique BOM. So I'm working on that this week.

Also, I have a major deadline coming up. I signed a contract stating that I would get my Grandmother's Flower Garden Quilt done by no later than the January guild meeting. I'm doing fairly well accomplishing that. I worked on it all day Friday and here are two pictures of my progress. I have only two scallops to finish to have the edges all sewn. It's painstaking work in which I have to turn under the top and backing one quarter of an inch and then blind stitch it closed by hand. Then when it's finished I must go back and quilt the final border of white hexagons also by hand. The entire project was done entirely by hand. I hand pieced the blocks and put them together also by hand. The guild helped me hand quilt the top around each and every hexagon, and now I'm nearly finished. It's been a labor of love. Special thanks goes out to Eleanor Howard for helping with the hand quilting so very many sessions we spent on this project, and also for keeping me going on it with her good natured ribbing. She will be nearly as proud to see this project done as I will!

I hope all of you have a very merry Christmas and may the joy of the holiday season be in your hearts.

Haunting in the spirit of the holiday,
Cindy K-K

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

In the Midst of NaNoWriMo

Hey everyone,

National Novel Writing Month has been keeping me very busy and very tired! Gosh it seems that the only time I have to write these days is from midnight until about 3 or 4 AM. But in the first two weeks I managed to get at least 78,000 words written on my Novel about Sarah and Nick called "Through Her Eyes". It seems strange but this month every one of my classes are going, the one month out of the year that I wish they hadn't. It would have freed up a lot more of my time to write if there had been little interest. I don't complain though. I just take this as a sign that God wants me to get out there and teach classes and make some extra money for Christmas. I'm sure He'll give me time off later on to finish the novel.

Also Rumpled Quilts Kin had their semi-annual fall retreat this past weekend. I worked on four or five different projects, got one top completed

and made huge progress on another one.

I'm now within two viewings of Pride and Prejudice of finishing my Kitty Cat I Spy quilt top. I have finished a bunch of Halloween projects but I have a few more I want to do. The goal I have in mind is to get the Halloween fabric stash down to a bare minimum so that I can fit it all into one box. It's not there yet.

I posted this photo of the project called Dancing with bats before, but now I have the companion piece for it done called Haunted Hill.

I also made this trip-tiche of Halloween goodies. this is called a split quilt technique.

Here too is a closeup of my Kitty Cat I Spy. I'll post more photos of these later as I get the quilt closer to finished.

This fine fellow is a project I'm working on for Interquilten. I got the branch couched on this weekend at retreat. I used a new thread that we are going to get in called Invisa-Fil. It's a new type of invisible thread that has enough body and pliability to be easy to work with but at the same time is fine and invisible. It worked great for couching. I used Pearl Cotton #5 in various colors of brown for the branches. Now all I have to do is fuse on the leaves and berries and well, you know, layer and quilt. It will be done and in the shop by sometime in December, I'm sure!!!

So it's turned out to be a very busy month. I am trying to get a few things done for a craft show coming up on December 3rd at Munson Hospital. Come down to the basement that day to find some interesting gifts for Christmas.

Last month Jeff updated our cable and we now have Showtime, so as a result I've been seeing my friends at Family Video a lot less lately. But I did manage to get over there yesterday to pick up the latest new releases. If you haven't seen the new Star Trek movie it's very well worth seeing, and not only to see the mean guy Sylar from Heroes depicting the much loved Vulcan, Mr. Spock. It's highly entertaining. I also got a good romantic Comedy called "The Ugly Truth." Turns out the truth isn't as ugly as all that. And the highly acclaimed depiction of the book by Jodi Picoult, "My Sister's Keeper." Don't try watching this one unless you have enough time for a good cry.

Have any of you read about the latest ideas that Michael Moore has been sending out? He wrote an article for the Record Eagle with a plan to get Traverse City out of this recession. It's worth a drive to the Library to look it up. It got sent to me this week because I'm a friend of the Film Festival.

Other than Haunting on my lap top and in Lake Ann this weekend I'm pretty much engulfed in the lives of Sarah and Nick. So stay tuned!

Yours Truly,
Cindy K-K
The Haunter

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Another great Road Trip!

I've been Haunting all over the state!

Suzy and I went on another road trip. Last Tuesday we hit the road and made it all the way down to Lake Orion and the quilt shop called Canterbury Village. I spent way too much, (don't tell Jeff) but the thing is this is going to be the last one this year and probably way until next summer. I'll need all that time to get the balance on my credit card down. LOL! Anyway, they were having a quilt show at the gift shop next door to the quilt shop and I took a few pictures. This one I'm going to copy.

I recently got my Halloween fabric stash out and started going through it. I now have about six more Halloween quilts planned. So it was serendipitous that I was able to see the interesting Halloween quilts at this shop.

So then there was this quilt too, which Suzy and I stared at for a long long time. So interesting. I took some close up detailed pics of it.
You can imagine, I'm going to be collecting blocks for my own version of this one. It's so detailed and unique.

And I love the little mermaids and fat ladies in bathing suits! So much fun!

But other than the Halloween projects that I won't be finished with before Halloween, I have a lot of other sewing to do. I have bags to make for the craft show at Munson, I have Christmas gifts to finish, and I have store samples to make. I know I'll have time to do most of this, but then again. Nanowrimo is starting Sunday! SUNDAY!! Yikes!

So my Sewing area looks like a horrifying industrial explosion of a fabric factory and all I really want to do is sit at my computer which is facing the window looking out onto my Japanese Garden and forget about everything that is going on behind me in the rest of the house. LOL!

So here is the view I face when I am sitting at the computer.

Nice Huh?

In other news: Jeff finally updated our cable. We have been enjoying Showtime for a week now, and we're totally caught up on the Dexter episodes. Are there any other Dexter Fans out there reading this? Love it!

Anyway, I will be catching up on the On-Demand movies for a while. That's why I haven't been at Family Video lately. Sorry A.J.! I'll am always trying to find good movies to tell all of you about. Maybe this time I should tell you about my all time favorites. Three words, Dickens, Austin, and Bronte. Yeah I know, those are authors not film makers. But I love the films made from the books that these three authors wrote. My favorite story of all time is Jane Eyre. I've seen every version of this film made. Likewise I will watch any film made from a Dickens book. My favorite one of those is Little Dorrit. I've been watching the BBC version of this book nearly daily.

The point is, the films made from these three authors seem to be ones that I watch again and again and again. Amazing!

OK, That's all I have for now. More about the finished projects later.

The Haunter

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Nanowrimo Coming soon!

Yes, Wow, it's almost November which is National Novel Writing Month. You who know me also know that I won this contest of will power last year and you know also that I will be participating again this year! My dilemma is this: Do I go ahead with a fresh new project (say the one based on the Border Babes?) or do I finish the great story of Nick and Sarah that I started last year? I don't know if it matters much to the people at the Nanowrimo site. They are more interested in keeping people writing and in a state of frantic creativity. I don't think anyone would even notice what I was writing as long as my total word count kept going up and up.

What I want to avoid at all costs is having writing UFO's. Oh come on, you quilters out there know what I mean. We have lists of projects,from every aspect of our experience all waiting to be finished. I hate to think how many UFO's I have now that I'm working at the quilt shop. It seems every week I come home with new projects. I will have to make new lists before January. I say lists because I do so many different things. I don't just make quilts and sew, I also do cross stitch, needlepoint, basketry, knit and crochet, scrapbook, and other more creative artistic things like watercolors, drawings, pastels, found object art, and altered books. I do not limit myself in the line of being creative. And I probably have UFO's (Unfinished Objects) in all of these areas.

But so far I have managed to avoid having a list of writing UFO's. I have a list of writing projects that I've wanted to do but haven't begun yet. Here they are:

1. The story of Patty the quilter who belongs to a group of quilters who meet at bookstore. Patty, in a desperate state of mind hurts herself and is hospitalized on suicide watch. Her friends from the bookstore quilting group come up to keep her company and to help with the suicide watch, they tell her their life stories one by one and through the sharing of these woman Patty finds new purpose in her own life.

2. An Historical Novel, begins in 1810 about a young man who may be half Native American, named Samuel Blackburn. He is jilted by the girl he is in love with and joins the Pennsylvania Militia to escape his past. His troop is sent to the furthest and wildest outreaches of civilization at that time, Northern Michigan and there is present for the attack on Fort Michilimackinac located on Mackinaw Island. There he meets the beloved of his commanding officer the beautiful Sophia Biddle, who has the heart of every man who meets her, including his. Nearly eclipsed by her beauty is her younger cousin Anne Biddle who is still somehow able to attract our hero's attentions and they form a friendship. The novel spans the war years of 1812 through 1814 and paints a picture of how the soldiers from both sides deal with the Native Americans in the area. Some fall in love and marry the beautiful Indian Women and others ignore and exploit them. Still others cannot cope with the societal morays that inhibit their more noble instincts and suffer because of it. It's a story about bigotry and love in the earliest years of our history.

3. And I'm not sure I even want to do this one, but someone told me recently that the struggles I went through last year with my health would make for an interesting book. I am thinking that it would have to be a comedy up-playing the two days I spent with a tube in my throat and could only communicate through written notes. I still have the notebook I was writing in and most of it is pretty funny, I was under the influence. Of course there is also the story of the balloon that I told at Karen Hill's memorial service. And the story about how I saw the ghost cat in my house while I was still on those same pain meds. I still say that just because I was on the pain meds doesn't mean Karen and my dead cat were not actually there!

4. And finally, I had an idea a while ago for a book about a girl growing up in a desert scrub area during the times of the early Roman Empire. She is often put in charge of her younger brother and cousins and once in a while they get away from her and she has to try to find them. One time she finds them playing near a camp of men and women who are nomads, a religious order of sorts, and the leader of the group plays with the young children and laughs at their antics. She falls in love with this young man even though she is not more than 12 and he is in his late twenties. She says she will someday marry this man, a carpenter by trade. Years pass and she is now a young girl of 16. She has never forgotten this young man and once again she sees him as he travels into Jerusalem for the Sabbath. She is so excited to see him and shouts to him. But he doesn't see her because there is a crowd of people who are also there to welcome him in. She then finds out who he is and why they are all welcoming him. Several days later she is walking along the road and sees a procession. Here is her young man, he has been beaten bloody and is condemned to death. He is struggling to carry a wooden crossbeam up a hill. He falls and she runs out to him to wipe the sweat and blood from his face with her vale. He mutters a blessing onto her. She witnesses his death unbeknownst to her family who would not have approved of their young virginal daughter seeing such a sight. Afterward she goes back to her life and then several years later she hears about a preacher who knew this rabbi. She goes to one of their meetings and hears the stories. Afterward she approaches the man and tells him her own story of how she saw this man when she was a child and how she would have done anything to make him laugh, his joy and laughter were infectious. She becomes a part of the earliest ministry and traveled with the apostle Paul for a time. She takes the name of Thecla, not the name she had been born with, to disguise her identity and hide from her parents who would not approve of her vocation. She becomes one of the first female martyrs of the Christian faith.

There are other ideas on the horizon as well, I'm sure of that. I used to write down all of my dreams and ideas. I haven't done that for a while because of the backlog of usable ideas I already have.

So what do you think? I have come up with a readers poll for all of you to vote and tell me which of these projects I should develop next. Let me know your thoughts, please. You may either post an answer to this article, or at the very least go to the poll and vote for the one you would most like to read. I'll be looking forward to reading your responses.

In other news: I was able to get a couple of things done. This is going to be a class at Interquilten next month. It's a bow tie wreath. For the idea I must thank my dear friend Sharyn Woerz. It was relatively easy to do. It takes 1/2 yard of two different fabrics, about 10 yards of ribbon and a wire wreath form available at Micheal's or any other craft store that carries floral supplies. I also added a big bow to dress it up a bit. I was thinking about stringing some beads through it as well. After all, you know my motto, "Gorp it to the max!"

I apologize for missing last weeks post. But I couldn't find a movie worthy to review and suddenly the weekend got very busy, plus there was a problem with a badge on Do any of you POGO? It's fun and exciting. Both of my men spend money on on-line gaming. They play Civ, and Warcraft, and I know not what all. So I feel justified in the $25 a year I spend to play POGO. They have a variety of on-line games and they keep you interested by giving you two or three challenges every week. You can also use game tokens won in the games to buy outfits and goodies for your pogo mini character. It's fun. You can go there to play the free games which include several fun ones including some types of solitaire card games and others. A special offer, the first three people who e-mail me with the words "pogo request" in the subject line, I will give you a free weekend pass to club pogo so you can try out the paid games.

So about the films. I've seen about fifteen films over the past two weeks and the only ones that have stuck in my mind are the following:

"The Proposal", with Sandra Bullock as a Canadian about to be deported. She makes a last ditch effort to stay at her high status job by telling her employers that she and her male assistant are in love and about to be married. I love Sandra Bullock and she doesn't disappoint in this wonderful romp in a far away Alaskan retreat. The addition of Betty White in this film makes it a real treat. Those two alone could make the worst written script funny.

"Factory Girl", a look into the twisted bizarre world of Andy Warhol's factory. No one very recognizable is in this film but that is good because it would just detract from the flavor of it. Edie, the "poor little" abused "rich girl" in this film whom Warhol later claimed he was in love with, gets sucked into the factory world of Warhol's playthings. She appears in a couple of his films but when his influences on her start taking hold in the form of drug abuse and jealousy when she has an affair with a thinly disguised Bob Dylan, Warhol turns on her and meanly betrays her. It's an interesting portrait of that time.

And saving the best for last, "The Jane Austin Book Club", is about a group of woman who come together over their love of the novels written by Jane Austin and the men and other women in their lives. If you can see Jane Austin as a prophet for our times or the writer of rule books for women and men, then you will love this film as much as I did. Of course there is one scene in the book that puts it all into perspective for those who aren't "getting it!" The young lesbian character is having a relationship with a writer who is using her for story ideas. In one tumultuous scene This character finds a rejection letter from a publisher saying that the story ideas are mean spirited, obvious and implausible. The story called, "Separating Eggs for Flan" is an obvious symbol of her parents divorce. If it weren't for this one scene, I think many people wouldn't get the whole premise of the film as an allegory. I studied literature in college and I thought this scene a little heavy handed until my husband watched it and said, "Oh, I get it, they aren't talking about the books at all, their just all talking about their own lives." Well, DUH! LOL! My one comment is this, I wish the playwright had chosen a different Sci-Fi author. I could tell that she (or he) had read a lot of Austin but I seriously wondered if she (or he)(no on second thought, she) had read any LeGuin at all. There was nothing whatsoever about LeGuin's artistic renderings of her alternative universe or her own wonderful and inspiring allegories. The only thing that was said about Leguin's books were, they were good! Well, Double DUH!

Oh and one last thing. I know several of you are as anxiously awaiting the November release of "New Moon" as I am. I hope the hype is not getting to you. The first movie "Twilight" could not live up to the hype and I'm certain that "New Moon" will likewise not. I really liked "Twilight", despite what 90% of my young friends thought. My friend Katie Vreeland doesn't even abide the mentioning of this film in her presence any more, so sick of it she is. But seeing this movie got me to read the four book series by Stephanie Meyer. It is universally acknowledged that the book is always (with few exceptions) better than the movie. I love movies though, I love them almost as much as I love books, and when I have huge amounts of spare time I will pick up a book, or at least listen to one on CD or tape. But when I don't have much time, and I want a little "Austin" as they say in the film, I will slide in a DVD and watch a movie based on the book that I love. That's how I feel about the "Twilight" series.

BTW, if you liked "Twilight", and have yet to read any of the Sookie Stackhouse novels, Family video has the first season of "True Blood" out on DVD. Definitely not for young children, plenty of bad language and graphic sex and marvelous blood sucking vampire scenes! Go for it!

OK, more about projects next week. I just had to get all that out of my system!

Haunting in the Video Store!
Cindy K-K
The Haunter

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Haunting in Marquette

I was haunting in Marquette last week folks! My mother lives up there on Ohio Street which is at the very top of a very large hill. So you would think that walking in Marquette would be a downhill proposition. But not so! Yes, one does have to come back, but it seems that I nearly always want to go someplace else that is at the top of another hill.

I first walked down Ohio street to Third street and up to the little strip mall where the quilt shop is. That was a fairly nice half mile walk. Then I decided to walk back to Mom's house and that IS uphill all the way. I was carrying a new fabric purchase too! I didn't start catching my breath until I had been in the house sitting down for at least ten minutes. Is that normal?

I didn't take any pictures on that trek even though I had the camera and I walked under this drooping tree with huge leaves and very unique trunk, on Park street. I wanted to go back and take pictures of it but never got the chance. You see I had forgotten that I took the card out of the camera. OK, so now I have a spare card behind my driver's license in my wallet in case that ever happens again.

After dinner that night Jeff and I wanted to go down to Presque Isle (pronounced Press-keel). The Island is a rocky piece of land that juts out from the North side of Marquette and has some of the most lovely scenery in the area. I wanted to go back to the big rocks but the drive was blocked off and I didn't think I could walk that far before sunset. So we went over to Sunset park on the West side of the island and walked backwards up the drive. It was windy out and the Surf was definitely up! The majority of these pictures are of that walk. We took about 50 pictures. These are the best of the bunch.

Jeff is convinced that in a few thousand years the water and wind will totally obliterate this whole Island even though it has huge outcroppings of exposed bedrock.

My Third and final walk in as many days was down 6th street to Ridge Street and up the huge hill to the Yarn shop, which is a stones throw from their Ben Franklin Store which is right next door to their Family Video store. I stopped at all three places and managed to drop another $30 on various things. No movies though for two reasons. Number one, A.J. wasn't there to advise me. And Number two, we were leaving early the next day. My mom is not much of a movie buff, although I could have rented Grand Torino for her, she would have enjoyed that one. This picture was taken on Ridge Street. I was wondering if this was an ordinance or just good advice.

These last two pictures were just things that we saw the morning we left. This poor dog in the back of the truck, we both wondered what this poor thing had done to deserve this treatment.

We stopped at the rest area in the Senney Stretch and apparently there was a nice big family of beautiful brown ground squirrels that lived in the trees nearby. They appeared like our city dwelling chipmunks but they were way bigger, smaller than a regular squirrel though. This one was serving lunch at the lunch counter and calling the rest of the family to come to the table. LOL~!

I managed to also finish a couple of projects but I'll report on those later.

It was a good trip and I'm glad I got to see my Mom before the holidays even though it's difficult for us to get up there as much as we would like. But none-the-less, I'm glad to be home.

Monday night we had a really great Guild meeting. My program was on Figuring out how to develop your own color theory. Lots of people seemed to like it.

Tuesday I thought I would change the livingroom furniture around and clean underneath things. I also wanted to set up my sewing room in the kitchen again. Working at Interquilten I really do need to have an organized sewing area. So I spent the last two days changing, cleaning, and organizing. LOL! It so needed to be done! I'll take some pictures of the new area after it's totally clean and organized and post them next week along with pictures of the projects I will be able to finish because of it!

How's that for wishful thinking!

Back haunting in TC again!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Busy Busy!

I've been so busy this week that I haven't even had time for major haunting. I have been too busy haunting my sewing areas. I managed to find time to finish a few projects. Here is a picture of my design wall with all the projects I finished. Two paper pieced blocks, a crazy log cabin bag, and the Applique BOM that will be up in the store by Monday. I've finished a few other things too, like three apple blocks for our guild's BOM, and yet another tomato quilt block. I'll show those when I get them all done and the top finished.

Meanwhile today I've also been paper piecing for the guild's new charity project. Yes, guild members who read this, I am doing 9 of these blocks! NINE! Count them NINE! Only one person I know of has done more and that's Evelyn who did 12 of them. So what about all of you, are you nearly finished with the one two or three that you took to do? I will be calling for them soon. I thought we could start putting them together at the November Saturday Sew, those that are finished at least.

So let the badgering commence! Ok, so just a friendly reminder as of yet!

On my list of todos for this afternoon are: finishing the rest of the blocks for the Lovable Huggable mystery, Machine quilting "Dancing with Bats" wall hanging, and finishing the Applique BOM, crossed hearts for guild.

Now for the shameless plug: Go in and see that projects we are planning for Saturday workshops at Interquilten. There is a simple fun raggy scarf that would be perfect for a kid to make for her grandma! Also have Tawni show you the easy "smart bag", a travel bag for jewelry, and a spiffy notebook holder. All of these are easy and able to finish in a couple of hours.

I did manage to get to Border's this week. We saw this woman who had a cool bag. She gave us the name of the website where she got it but it went straight out of my head! Go figure. I also found a neat book on Halloween ideas for my Sister-in-law's big party. So that is going in the mail this week along with Ann Nelson's yarn and my brother's birthday card!

Oh and for those of you who asked, here is a picture of my movie expert at Cherryland Family Video, His name is A.J. and this week he suggested I watch "Observe and Report" which is similar to the previous film on the same topic "Paul Blart: Mall Cop". I had not seen either of them so I rented them, and as you can see I'm not recommending them.

But he's pretty cute anyway right? And he always calls me "My Dear" when I come in! Makes an old lady smile to have a young man say that to her!!!

OK, so this week Jeff has off and we are planning to take a trip up to Marquette. No doubt I'll see some sites to report on up there. I hope to see some color even though it's a little early for it here yet.

That was my boring week. I'll see if I can take some classes up in Marquette. There is a great little fabric store up there.

See you when I get back from my Marquette haunts!

Cindy K-K
The haunter!

Monday, September 21, 2009

How was your weekend? Mine was gruelling, thanks!

How do you like this guy? His name is "Dancing with Bats" and he is available at Interquilten. Come in to the shop and take a closer look at him.

Now that the shameless plug has been accomplished, I'll tell you about my grueling weekend.

It started out on Saturday with a quilt-a-thon to benefit QAC (pro. Quack) the Quilters Against Cancer. It's a Michigan based group geared toward raising money for women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer who do not have insurance. The quilt-a-thon was sponsored by Interquilten and was attended by members of three area quilting guilds. I got action shots of the cutting,


and ironing.

We managed to make at least a dozen quilt tops and over the next few weeks we intend to get them machine quilted and bound in order to send them off so they can be sold on the QAC website. I will keep you informed of when and how to bid on one of these quilts.

Sunday morning I rose early and met Tawni at her house in Interlochen. (For those of you who don't know, Tawni Gilmer is the owner of Interquilten which I guess makes her my boss, although she doesn't act like it. She treats me more like a valued friend whose opinion she respects. Go figure!)

Anyway, we drove down to Chicago for a little thing they like to call Fabriganza! The Troy Distributors opened up their warehouse and store owners were allowed to walk through and pick up whatever bolts they wanted. We were able to get some batiks as well as some Halloween panels that we had been out of for a long time. We'd had lots of fun cutting kits for these little Halloween panels and we had been out of them for some time. I'll get a picture of it and post it for all of you to see.

When we arrived it was a gorgeous cool sunny day. As you can see, the sky-line of Chicago is just lovely.

The Troy Warehouse is in a very nice neighborhood filled with these little brownstones. This one had a particularly lovely garden out front. There were a lot of Spanish signs in the window fronts, which was probably indicative of the local ethnic make-up.

We got in and started shopping. Periodically they announced a speaker and we went to hear three of them. The first two had fairly good talks on how to boost sales in the store through display and book support and other good ideas. But the third one, a young lady from a distributor of quilting books, was showing very creative ideas on embellishing and how to sell new idea type books. This is one of the quilts that she showed.

The idea of course is to have the display model up on the wall and in front of it have strips of fabric cut with the Triangles on a roll. The customers take the bundle of triangles home with them and sew them up and then they bring them back to trade with other triangles that you have in a bin in the store.

Interlochen is the home of a music academy as many of you know, so Tawni and I are always looking for musically oriented fabric and patterns. This quilt was on display also at Troy.

While we were in there the weather changed a little. It got warm and muggy and started to rain on and off. I still wanted to take a few pictures of the architecture in Chicago though.

We were planning on spending the night somewhere on the road but we stopped in South Haven for dinner and felt pretty good so we kept on going and got home by midnight. So in case anyone wants to know if you can make it to Chicago and back in one day, YOU CAN!

You're friendly neighborhood Haunter
Cindy K-K

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Haunting at Mackinaw and Indian River

I DID IT!!! I Actually walked the entire length of the Mackinaw Bridge! It was not the ordeal that I was anticipating either. I nearly backed out several times remembering what happened last time I tried. But I am 100 pounds lighter now and I am in way better shape than I was last time. This was a true mile stone in my life!
I am very proud of myself!
Walkers from left to right are myself, Joann Day, Terise Gavar, Anne Nelson, and Suzy Bouwsma.
There was a record crowd there, the five of us that walked had a contest with a Fat Quarter at stake each as to how many walked. The total was almost 50,000 people. The winner of our pool was Anne the only non-quilter! But she's a knitter, so we are all going to find her a ball of yarn to send anyway. It was right that she won, it was her birthday and all we got her was some cupcakes and a card! I didn't get to know her very well because she was in the very back of the van and I was in the front next to my driver (read husband). But Joann described her as one of the kindest people she had ever met. Jeff was a real sport that day. He drove us up there and waited in traffic jams that were miles long to get us to the other side of the Bridge and to pick us up afterward. Jeff is in good with the parking gods, not the traffic gods so this was especially trying for him. He really deserved this cupcake.
Everyone who meets Terise loves her (I hope your reading this) because she is so funny and bubbly and in her own way wise about life. She is genuinely interested in people and she listens to them even if what they are saying is nonsense.
After the walk we needed to get the heck out of Dodge (Mackinaw) so we got back on the freeway and drove down to Indian River where we had picnic lunch and visited the the Cross in the Woods. We learned that we were all very spiritual and this little pilgrimage was just the right thing after that grueling feat! Suzy, my best friend, is the one who planned it and made most of the wonderful potluck picnic that we ate.

By the time this photo was taken we were hanging onto each other for dear life. We could have all stood there and posed for hours as long as we were holding onto each other. Posers are from left to right, Suzy Bouwsma, Anne Nelson, Terise Gavar, me, and Joann Day. I had met Joann Day when Suzy invited her to come to Borders. Then I ran into her no less than twice at her job when I was undergoing all that surgery last year. Joann is a recovery room nurse. She took care of me when I had my stomach surgery. There were only two words to describe how I felt, Pain--Heat! Every single thing that Joann did for me that day relieved me in some way. I love Joann with all my heart not because of what she has done for me, but because she is who she is!
For those of you who have never been there, Cross in the Woods is a giant crucifix. It is made from an Oregon Red Wood Tree and is 55 feet high and 22 feet wide. It has the figure of Christ cast in bronze which is 28 feet long from head to toe, and weighs 7 tons. The cross was completed in 1959. It was designed by Michigan Sculptor Marshall Fredericks. Several very interesting things have been built around this monument and the grounds have been decorated with many more sculptures and statues, including the three I show here.
The Blessed Kateri, a Native American of the Algonquin Nation who was converted in 1674 at the age of 18. What attracted me to the sculpture was the depiction of turtles at the base. Her father was the chief of the Mohawk tribe, the Turtle Clan. She was declared "Blessed" by Pope John Paul II in 1980.
Saint Francis of Assisi is a most beloved saint. His sculpture is located in a wooded grotto surrounded by pine trees. I could easily imagine the night time when the animals come out of the woods and I wonder if the animals are drawn to the this lovely place where the saint who so loved them is present. St. Francis is the patron saint of ecology.
This lovely sculpture of the holy family is placed within easy view of the outdoor cathedral. It carries with it a blessing for the family and a prayer to keep our own families safe and strong. Joann said she always gets emotional when she sees this sculpture. We discretely did not take any pictures of her after her visit to the Holy Family.

This great day is something I will remember all my life.

I'll go back to reporting on projects for next week. Have a good one!
Cindy K-K
The Haunter at Mackinaw! LOL!