Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Ah, Wilderness!

Three years ago, Ken & I bought a little second home in the North Conway, NH area.  We just love our petite maison.  We stay there at least one weekend a month, often more.  Yes, it looks small, but it has five rooms, 2 bedrooms and 1 1/2 baths.  All creature comforts are covered and it is located close to everything.

Thanksgiving day we went to my sisters for dinner and afterward we drove up to our little house for the rest of the weekend.  When we entered the house we were greeted with a strong stench!  We had rented the house two weekends earlier, and at first, we thought someone didn't take out the garbage when they left, but the can in the kitchen was empty.  We also found the smell very strong in the second bedroom directly under the kitchen.  This led us to the conclusion that some creature got into the house and died between the two floors. Yuck!  I thought it must be a chipmunk since they are always running around outside the house, Ken thought it might be a mouse.  We were both hoping it was nothing larger than either of those.  The smell was pretty much contained in the kitchen and one bedroom, so we closed the door to that bedroom and went to bed.  In the morning, Ken decided to rip out part of the bedroom ceiling to take a look since we could find no evidence of anything in the kitchen.  Well the smell was even stronger once the ceiling was removed.  He couldn't find the critter, but did find a lot of mouse droppings.  I got up on the ladder with a flashlight and found the varment.  I saw two little mouse ears peaking out from under an electrical wire.  The little guy had got himself stuck under the wire and couldn't get out.  He had not been there long enough to get messy, thank goodness, just stiff and flat.  Once we removed him, removed all the insulation around the area and sprayed a gallon of Lysol, the smell improved.  By the end of the day, there was no smell in the kitchen and the bedroom had a faint smell.  We decided to leave the ceiling open for now  to air it out and will repair it on our next visit.  I guess we are lucky all we had was a mouse.  We do have electronic critter repelents in the house, but this guy somehow got through.

As for sewing, I am working on a fancy evening jacket to wear with black crepe pants to a couple Christmas parties coming up in December.  I cut out the jacket and fused interfacing the weekend before Thanksgiving, sewed Sunday and Monday night and it is half finished. I had sewn this jacket before, so the fitting issue was not something to slow down the process.  The jacket is McCalls 6042 I'll post a picture when I'm finished which hopefully is next weekend since I need to wear it on December 12.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

PatternReview.com 10th Anniversary

Yesterday I attended the PR Boston Anniversary Party.  About 30 women and a few husband were there enjoying each others company while treating themselves to munchies, mocktails and cake at the PR headquarters.  There were 18 other such celebrations around the world yesterday.  PR has grown so much in the past 10 years. 

I first knew of Deepika back on Sewing World around 2001.  She was always asking questions, seeking information.  I do remember her asking if anyone knew of a site where sewing patterns were reviewed.  Although there were a few sites that posted reviews, they were limited in their scope.  Deepika decided that she would set up a site.  I thought to myself "Who is this girl?  She thinks she can set up a site for pattern reviews?  Good luck to her!"  A few days later, she pops back on Sewing World announcing her site along with a link to it.  Hey, not bad for something off the top of her head!  Little did we know at that time that she was a professional web designer.   At that time it was just reviews of patterns, but people started adding more and more reviews, then it began to expand to other areas of review, then on-line classes, message boards, get-togethers, etc.  Who knew it would become such a force in the sewing world.  Certainly not Deepika. 

I feel a major reason PR has grown so large is because Deepika is an open-minded, curious, friendly, risk-taking, always positive individual who has a strong love of sewing. I have been lucky enough to personally know Deepika over the past 10 years and have met many other members at various events including 3 trips to New York, seminars, and a few celebrations at her house (at one we celebrated PR reaching 25,000 members!). 

Anyway, we had a lovely time last night along with a fashion show of stunning cocktail dresses, gifts, a slideshow which will most likely make its way onto the website, and great conversation.  Afterwards, we went to dinner together (and had real cocktails).  I did take pictures, but my camera is not cooperating by letting me download them all.  But this picture did make it through.

Saturday, November 19, 2011


After a nearly three year break, I want to start this blog up again.  A lot has happened to my family and me during this time, most of it is positive, thankfully.  Both my sons are now out of the Marines and going to college full time--and both have moved out of the house.  I love when they are here, but an empty nest is also a good thing.

My husband, Ken, has retired, but is working part-time for two engineering firms.  He really is enjoying himself.

Three years ago, I started a business with two other gentlemen.  It is viable and for the past six months we have been paid salaries.

We have taken two trips to France and have been taking French lessons for the past three years.  We are not great at French, but can communicate.  Also we took a major wine tasting tour last April in France for five days in the Rhone area.  It was heavenly.

I have been sewing, though not quite as much as I want.  I have also taken up quilting which I had been avoiding for fear of a new addiction.  I was right, the quilting stash has 5 quilts waiting to be made.  I love planning quilts, picking out the fabrics, patterns, figuring out sizes, cutting, sewing--just everything about it.  I have only completed one so far, but another one is about a third sewn.  I'll post my progress. 

My life is good, and sewing is still a major part of it.