Sunday, August 29, 2010


I'm still here!  Aside from getting half my quilt blocks done for Juliette's baby quilt, we picked peaches for canning this week, and we picked a little bit of blackberries.  We only picked enough for two and a half cans of jam, which I made today.  I just wanted to check in and put up a single picture from our Europe trip before getting back to sewing.

I want to show off the very small bags we took with us!  It was incredibly handy to not have to check anything, nor to have to lug big bags on and off the many trains we took.  These are our backpacks lounging by the sea in Greece while we did the same.

Yes, that is all we had between the two of us for a month of travel.  I even had a fancy occasion dress for going out to dinner in Venice stuffed in mine.  As my sewing projects wind down, I'll post more pictures, I promise!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Fabric Love

I bought some fabric this weekend for a project for our new (on-the-way) niece, and I think it's the cutest stuff I've ever purchased:

I haven't decided what to do with it yet, but I love the gray and yellow scheme.  And those birds, I love those birds!  I'll post the finished product when it's all together, though that might be a while.  I expected to have all kinds of time this week since my commute is lessened as we house-sit on the east side.  I've only done the eenciest bit of sewing, though.  I had already forgotten how much time having a house takes up.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Great Chicken Caper

Josh and I are house sitting this week for a couple of his senior residents.  Our responsibilities include caring for the gardens, the dog, the cat, and the chickens.  They said we could bring Ada, and we thought she would make a great addition to the household, but I didn't anticipate one thing - she turned out to be a professional chicken hunter.

Yes, within five minutes of taking over guardianship of our friends' home, Adelaide found the backdoor open and discovered her feathered friends.  She chased them until one flew over the front gate, one completely vanished, and one was in her clutches.  After I got her to release the chicken and tugged her back to the truck, I tried to figure out what to do. I went back to the chicken she caught, expecting to find it mortally wounded, but it was only scared out of its mind and had gotten up to hide behind the compost bin.  Where it stayed for hours.

Then, after setting up Ada's crate and relocating her (I'm not cruelly leaving her in the car on the hottest day of the year even if she did try to do in the chickens), I began my search of the neighborhood.  I went around and asked the neighbor over the back fence if our chicken ended up in his yard - no.  I asked several passers-by if they'd "seen a chicken clucking around" - no.  I searched the yards surrounding the house, but only found a glass chicken yard ornament - not good enough.

In complete shame and despair, I gave up and went back to the house to eat.  I texted Josh, who was on call at the hospital.  I did some Red Cross work.  I called my friend to commiserate.  Several hours passed.  Then, I decided to water the plants so nothing else met its demise on our watch.  Lo and behold!  Chicken #2 emerged from under the house.  I quickly made sure that it was not Chicken #1 simply in a new place.  No!  Chicken #1 is still terrified behind the compost bin!  Having two chickens is way better than having one chicken!

Revitalized by this discovery, I thought, "Surely the other chicken is still hiding nearby!"  I began my search again and quickly found Chicken #3 in the neighbors tree.  I told it to stay where it was and went to get gloves.  I could only find snow gloves.  I chased the chicken around the front yards of several houses in snow gloves.  I caught the chicken and put her back where she belongs.  Days later, we still have all three chickens!

We did relocate Ada back to my parents the next morning, though.

Friday, August 13, 2010


I love this ugly mug

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Make Yourself at Home

So, I tried to come up with a clever title for my revamped blog.  I'm pretty pleased with "Make Yourself at Home" for two reasons.  The first is that I love to be hospitable.  I love doing/making things for people and making them feel welcome around me.  I want you to make yourself at home. 

The second reason is that I feel the most myself when I am at home doing what I love.  It is where I get to be creative, it is where I naturally put others first, it is where I best like who I am.  I try to be consistent everywhere I go, of course, and having this home space where I can ground myself daily and "make myself" into who I want to be is so helpful for those efforts.  So, when you run into "commuter Laura" or "workday Laura" or "hanging out Laura," know that she is trying to be kind and intentional and thoughtful and creative and productive because that's the person I want to make myself into.  And for me, that starts at home.

Thursday, August 5, 2010


Before I left Tulsa, my friend Susan entrusted me with a collection of shirts that had belonged to her mother.  She asked me to make them into two quilts – one for her and one for her brother.  Her only instruction was to make them as colorful as possible, so I decided to use a little bit of each of the 15 shirts she gave me.
My mom helped me out by removing all the buttons and cutting the shirts apart at the seams to give me the largest possible pieces to work with.  I then cut them into strips of varying widths and arranged them into 30 differently designed squares. 
I finished the first on Tuesday and will bind the other this weekend.  I had a lot more fabric left over than I expected, but Susan wanted some to have made into teddy bears for their kids.  In that case, I will mail the remaining material to her along with these:

Please pardon my poorly lit pictures!