Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Thank you, Ref!

So, I FINALLY used my Amazon gift card, provided by one ref250 in honor of my birthday. I got Help Wanted, an addictively fun wii game that recently came down in price.

It's basically a bunch of mini-games, like being a manicurist or carrot farmer. So far, my favorite is being an interpreter. Pretty cool stuff.

I also got the cd, December by George Winston. It only arrived today, but the part I've listened to is wonderful!

So thank you much, Ref. I will think of you as I enjoy my new toys!


To my many readers in the blogosphere (see, I'm funny! many readers. hah.):


Celebration is in order! You have my full permission to have fun for me this evening and into the weekend! Eat sweets, dance wildly, go on vacation, etc. Such a relief and soooo exciting!


Sunday, November 22, 2009

My Next Quilting Project

Never one to leave well enough alone, I've started planning my next quilt before I've finished the one I'm on. I think it's pretty exciting, so I thought I'd share it with you! First off, here's the pattern I'll be using:

It's from Quilt Sampler Magazine (their Fall/Winter 2009 Issue) and it's the quilt from Temecula Quilt Co. I love it because it's a sampler without having applique. I'm just not quite ready to add another thing to my list, so I'm sticking with piecing right now. Anyway, I love the pattern, but I really don't need to buy more fabric. I'm pretty sure I already have more than I can use... but that's not really the point, is it? Anyway, as I sat admiring the quilt and thinking about the fabric I do have, it hit me: Use the Christmas fabrics I collected after last year's Stash Dash!! It's perfect because the pattern calls for medium/dark fabrics:

For which I will use the reds/greens I collected! It also calls for light colored backgrounds. As you can see:

I got those too! And finally (this is where you get to voice your opinion), it calls for a bit of tan. You can see it in the picture as a border around the center area. These fabrics don't really fit in to the background or medium/dark categories for me, so I was wondering, "Could I use one of these as the tan border?" and "If so, which one?"

Now's your chance! Let me know! Anything would be helpful - like should I get rid of the two fabrics in the red/green picture that stick out like a sore thumb? Or maybe one of those fabrics that I don't know how to classify is really a background. Thanks in advance for your help!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Progress with a BANG!

I had last Wednesday off, but in the spirit of readiness for Thanksgiving, I planned to get up at a reasonable hour and do serious laundry and sorting and storing of clothes. I hate to report this, but all did not go as planned.

It all started a little before 6am when both Lillabee and I woke up to crunching and banging sounds. My first thought was that someone was running into a car, then backing up and doing it again, repeatedly. Except then, BOOOM!!!! My bedroom lit up with a yellow flash. (The walls are yellow, so the flash could have been white light...) My next assumption was that my neighbor's house was on fire. I wasn't that far from wrong. It was a house one block away, but I could see it burning.

I called 911 and they already knew about it - firetrucks arrived soon. I stayed up and watched until they got it mostly out and there was just a big plume of smoke. Then I figured, "I'll get 15 minutes more sleep." (in the picture below, you can see a reflection of my bedside lamp on the window - hope it's not too confusing, it shows the smoke really well)

Three and half hours later, I woke up. There was still a smoky smell in the air, but the fire was out and it was definitely later than I meant to sleep!

I had some delicious pancakes, taking full advantage of the day off work. They were so good. My co-workers teased me a bit for taking pictures of food. See what I do for you? This way you can enjoy my day off, too!

Finally, I'd like to share what I've been sewing away on for the last week and half. It's the quilt of merryheathreness, and you wouldn't believe the work that goes into making a quilt look like you didn't plan it. It's slow going, but I'm trying to remember that, like all things in life, I'm only going to be doing this sewing once, so I can enjoy the process and if it takes a while, it just makes it more memorable.

Tonight we're having a storm and I wish the wind would stop. Have I mentioned I really don't like wind? Well, I don't. And we get it a lot. Grrrrrr...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Tallest Betty Suarez Ever

Well, I've been a bit sick (theories abound - cold, flu, swine flu, etc.), but I'm back to feeling much better - so it's time to show you how utterly fabulous I looked as Ugly Betty.

I got the wig & glasses as part of a kit, but all the clothes are my own. That amazed my co-workers. One quote, "I'm just going to start wearing whatever I feel like. You've inspired me!"

There were only a couple of us who dressed up, but it was so much fun I didn't mind standing out. One really fun part was people didn't recognize me. I got a "Hi dear" from one person - then "Oh! Mary Heather!" Another person drove by me as I was shouting their name without even looking at me.

The kit also came with a Guadalajara poncho and a "B" necklace - but I didn't wear the poncho much, just because I was so proud of my Halloween costume that came entirely from my own wardrobe! That's the best, right? Plus wearing a wig was fun. And hot. Literally.

Friday, October 30, 2009

I'm pretty sure I've seen it all, now.

This morning I was minding my own business surfing the web, when I stumbled across this fabric by Alexander Henry. Isn't it a riot? What exactly do you make from fabric that has foot tall Ken dolls on it?

Here's a close-up of the pirate:

And, it comes in blue! Wow. I'm very nearly speechless.

I think I'll go get ready for work. I'm dressing as Betty Suarez, by the way. Pictures to come!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

We've got some catching up to do!

The highlights: I had a birthday and I finally took the PE exam! But rather than bore you with long stories about what I did/did not do during October, I've decided to bore you with pictures!

First up, I made some cards. This was the cutest (in my opinion):

October was notable for the number of sweets I ate (and the tight jeans I have to prove it). Here's a particularly beautiful cupcake, even after I dropped it!

I encountered this surprise on my way to work one morning. Come to think of it, I didn't have any celebratory ice cream, and this guy is worth a sundae, at least!

I cultivated a healthy appreciation of bedhead as well - saves time on grooming. Just kidding, but I did wake up with the best hair I've EVER had:

I decided to eat up food before buying more, so here's a delicious little something I whipped up with baby potatoes, sour cream, broth, chipotle puree and cheese. Yes, it was good.

The cutest part about my birthday? My cupcakes, custom made by Firefly herself! So cute.

The first post-test celebration involved quilt shops and my mom. Very good combination. Here are the patterns and fat eighths I got:

I got a bit of fabric for my stash while I was at it... A couple fat quarters, a couple quarter yard cuts and a couple half yards. All in all, very successful.

So, that was October, as told by 8 photos. Hope you enjoyed!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

New 'Puter!

I am the proud owner of a new HP mini. It's cute. It has a substantial hard drive and it's got pearly white little keys. Very fun.

So, one week from now I'll be quietly worrying about my test, because it's one week from tomorrow. It's the final push - and I think I'll work on environmental tonight. It's going to be fine, and I'm just really excited to be done with it! Would you like to hear what I'm going to do when I'm done? Here goes:
  • The quilt of Mary Heatherness
  • Fix my Monterrey Sweatshirt
  • Cover Madeleine (my KitchenAid)
  • Learn to play Joplin Rags
  • Exercise
  • Use up food in my cupboards
  • Finish my French quilt
  • Keep in touch with friends
  • Sew knit clothing
  • Make an apron
  • Acheive major things on Beatles Rock Band
  • The cutest ever PJ Pants
  • Boozy Cheesecake (Grand Marnier - it bakes out...)
  • Walk my Dog
  • Ride my bike
  • Catch up on House, M.D.
  • And more!!!
I'm pretty sure this list will take me quite a while to accomplish, but I will be happy to be trying! But, I suppose I ought to study now so I don't have to do this again in 6 months. So, signing off... MH

Monday, September 28, 2009

A Placeholder Post

I realize this is my second time doing this... but it'll stop soon, I promise. I just want to let you know I'm still here.

I'm studying like mad for the PE exam.

It's on my birthday (October 23) and it occurred to me today that I'm not going to be able to plan a fabulous birthday for myself this year, unless I celebrate a little later. So, I'd now like to open the floor for discussion of when/how I should celebrate this year. I'll be done with the test, and I'm not 30 yet! Both things to celebrate. :)

I'll be back before long.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

A Day in the Park & Baby Sized Burritos

Yesterday I loaded up my car with friends and drove to the ferry. Our ultimate goal? An Improv Party that I saw an email about... We listened to a few new CDs (Needtobreathe, Group 1 Crew, Above the Golden State) as we made our way to Gas Works Park in Seattle. It took a long time, but it was sooo worth it. I have a new favorite place.

It was a beautiful day, and the park is so totally my speed. It's got a big mound where people were flying kites, there were two weddings going on, numerous photographers throughout, really cool pipes and industrial leftovers, and it didn't feel crowded at all!

We got straight to work exploring the park and found the "play barn" where a young man was having senior photos while mom and dad provided bits of encouragement. Seth nearly got blown away in a windstorm.Then, we ran into a person I know! We were in the right place for the Improv! :) As happens sometimes, there was a switching around of sunglasses/glasses. Turns out, I missed my decade:

I soooo should have been in the 50's.

After that bit of exploring and socializing, we got to enjoy the work of Clean Slate Improv. I laughed so hard I gave myself a headache.

I am very pleased to report that they used my suggestions several times.

When they were done, we all stood around talking until the sun was going down and a couple people were so hungry they actually ate the Clif Bars I brought with me. So, we caravanned to Gorditos, home of the infant sized burrito. I didn't have one, but what I did have was delicious. (A veggie taco.) This is half of the burrito that the guys across from me had:

Gives new meaning to "food baby".

By then it was getting late, so we headed back to the ferry, and hence home. Long day, but so wonderful.

Beautiful, but Disappointing...

I chopped. I diced. I peeled. I seeded. I made a thing of beauty, a chopped salad.

The disappointing part? The cucumber was the most bitter thing I have ever tasted. And I forgot to taste it before I mixed it thoroughly with the other veggies. Boo.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Garage Voice's Album: Let Us Reconcile

I know I've written about these guys a couple times before, but bear with me one more time: there's free music in it for me. :)

I've been thinking about the difference between experiencing a band live and listening to their recordings, especially after Creation, where I found out I don't like a band in person that I do like on CD. Some bands are better live, and others are great recording artists - the fun part about Garage Voice is that they're both. The thing is that their music really should be played in a place that you have the option of getting up and dancing because it really makes me want to move (and other people, I assume). Thus the benefit of the CD - you can listen to them anywhere!

Let Us Reconcile has all the things I liked about Garage Voice when I first heard them: Great lyrics, fun bass lines, intelligence, humor, and general "listenability" (did I just make that word up?). I think the album has broad appeal - a little bit of something for everyone.

Probably the thing I like the best (besides the pleasant eardrum tickling) is the lyrics. My favorite phrase comes on the third song, Repentance:
"Every time I hear the word of law
The love of God just blows my mind
Tells me I can be confident His love is really enough"

Another gem? In Tips of Your Hands, they say:
"Habits are structured by what often occupies the mind
It builds up a highway and keeps it prioritized"
which makes me wonder, "What often occupies my mind?".

My favorite song when I first got the CD was Mercy Came a Runnin' - it's got some great accapella bits and guitar... Then, it was Book It. Today? Maybe Cropper - I was groovin' whilst mixing up a blueberry lime desert and enjoyed the music as much as the sweetness. Or perhaps In My Iniquity - any song that can gracefully combine tuba, organ, and guitar is to be recognized!

Find Garage Voice online at

Okay, thanks for reading - I know I don't have the encyclopedic knowledge required to write a proper review with allusions and comparisons, but the bottom line is: It's a great album from a really great band. Listen. Posthaste.

Friday, July 31, 2009

I went on vacay!

So, it was wonderful. First, I went to Las Vegas. Here's what you need to know about Vegas: It's soooo far to anywhere. I know I'd heard it before, but now I can attest from personal experience. It's crazy. Also, things are going on 24hrs. Here's what I did...

Arrived Saturday night (temperature: 103 F) and took a very long shuttle bus (which doubled as a very cheap tour) to downtown. It's not the strip, but it's very cool! The Fremont Street Experience is like a giant block party going on all the time...

The next morning I headed to the strip and checked into to my beautiful hotel, The Wynn Las Vegas.

They had a room available, so I settled in, then went shopping! (Really, I am so predictable.) I needed black sandals - and they have a FABULOUS Macy's. I also picked up the tickets for the night's show: O by Cirque du Soleil. After a bit, my friend Jim arrived and we had our first buffet experience! Delish! Although I did get distracted by the canteloupe, while Jim said I needed to focus on the "high ticket" items. Then we headed to the beautiful Bellagio for my first ever Cirque du Soleil experience. It was amazing. The show's main feature is a stage that moves up and down in a tank of water so people appear out of the water or dive from multiple stories above into it. My favorite part was these big swings that they got going really well and then dove from them into the water.

Afterward we watched the fountains at the Bellagio - Viva Las Vegas by Elvis.

The next day we tried to sit by the pool, but it rained! So, we were walking through a casino and saw that Wheel of Fortune was filming! After standing in line for a couple hours, we saw Pat Sajak and Vanna White! Crazy! Let me just tell you, the set looks much smaller in person. I thought it'd be huge, but really, it's not. The episode will air September 24 - and the final puzzle will blow you away!

The weather continued to get crazy - by the time I got back to my hotel room the words drowned rat applied to me.

The next day, Jim & I met for a tasty breakfast buffet, then he had to leave. I managed to get in some quality pool time before setting out on the trek of my life.

I walked more than 5 miles in one afternoon and I was pooped by the end! First, souvie shopping at Bonanza. They say it's the world's largest gift shop, but I don't think it's true. It is big, though! I got a couple fun things, then headed to the other end of the strip (remember, it's like 45 miles...) where I ate a SO GOOD veggie burger at Burger Bar then waddled to M&M World before picking up a crepe to-go in Paris. During all that walking (I wish I could describe how tired it made me) I bought a ticket for the late show of Blue Man Group. In one word: Bizarre. I enjoyed it even though I was wedged between two large guys that I didn't know and one had the leg-jiggle-thing, which means he burns more calories than me, but I thought I was going to have a blister on the side of my leg by the end from the constant motion. Grrr...

The next morning, I hauled my tired body to the airport, slept on the plane, then headed for Eastern/Central WA. Specifically, The Gorge Amphitheatre for Creation 09. I camped about as far as you could get from the stages, so the first day I only went over twice - too tired. (Man, I'm a wimp!) I had a pretty good time, although I learned something: This woman was not meant to camp alone. It's not nearly as fun if you don't have someone to share the experience of wrestling with the tent, swearing at the campstove when it blows out, and moving with the shade throughout the day.

I survived, although I left early - but not before hearing two really great concerts.

The first was Group 1 Crew. They've got a sort of Black Eyed Peas thing going on, but the part I was impressed with was that when they spoke it seemed fresh, and real. Like they meant what they were saying, and it wasn't just a memorized little blip between songs. It was almost like a mini-sermon, and I enjoyed it. Then, Newworldson. Let me tell you, those guys know how to do a good concert! They were one of the only groups that got enough applause to warrant an encore, although they weren't allowed because of "policy" or something silly. The drummer used a mic and mic stand as percussion instruments and it sounded really cool. They did a mixture of music - swing, reggae, rock. I loved it.

On that high note, I took my tired, sunburned body home. And when I went to work on Monday I felt like maybe the work problems weren't that bad, because there is life outside of my little tiny sphere. (Oh, and the sun still shines somewhere, if not in the Pacific Northwest - that was reassuring.)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Excuses, excuses...

Anything to keep from studying for the PE. I have gotten so much done domestically and craft-ily. I washed the hand washing that I've been putting off for I don't know how long. I've done the dishes and the laundry. Now I admit, I must get crackin'. So, my final(ish) fun stuff that I made:

First, the card I neglected to photo last time. I used Gamsol and a fun stamp set (called Sushi) to make this one.

Here's the inside. I had fun using the Stickles glitter to make everything a little bit sparkly.

Next, a quick card I made for someone who likes "swishies!" and glitter!

And finally, my Saturday afternoon project this week, a pincushion. It's kind of big for a pincushion, but it's just right for a slice of cake. It was fun to make. I had to rip one seam and I need a funnel for filling them if I ever make another, but all in all a success. I didn't put the little rose that the pattern called for because I like the sprinkles look of the fabric.

Mmm... Cake. Well, I guess that's it for this time. I'm going on vacation next week. Cannot wait. I will get a tan. I will sleep some. I will have some fun experiences. I will blog about it when I get back. I promise!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Three Movies, Three Cards...

Hi there. I have a bit of a headache, so this will be quick. I made a few more cards (four, to be exact, but I only have pictures of three because I left one at work - oops). For the first one, I used colored pencils and Gamsol to color the cute little bugs. That was fun while I watched Last Chance Harvey (cute movie, by the way).

This next one is my least favorite. You know how Chanel said to remove one thing before leaving the house? Well, I think this card may need to follow that advice. But, I'm not sure. It's just not quite as cool as I want it to be. Definitely not as good as the movie I watched during this card making - He's Just Not That Into You.

And finally, on this card I was trying for a little more manly. Or at least a little less girly. This one was difficult to stamp white on chocolate brown. I finally ended up using white embossing powder in addition to the white stamp pad. This one I made during Tale of Despereaux. Man, that is a cute mouse.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

I made a card!

Well, you may have thought, "MH has forgotten all about her blog". But, it's not entirely true. I got a little bit over busy with work and Relay for Life, but now things are going better - so! This morning before work I made a card to congratulate a coworker on achieving that so-cool engineer status: The PE! (Professional Engineer - I take the test in October. I may whine about the studying required.) Here it is:

I was reading about inchies last night, so I decided to give them a try. My review? They're fun! I think I'll try them again sometime soon. I was in a big hurry, so this isn't anything too special, but it was fun to get back into making something. I plan to do some more soon. Here's the inside, with a fun stamp that was quite appropriate, I think. Also, I liked making it open like a book, even though it was a "landscape" card.

Well, that's it for now - it's been fun to be back!

Friday, June 5, 2009

I'm still here!

So, it's been a while since I posted. Sorry! I've been thinking, "oh, I'll do it tomorrow" for several days/weeks in a row. Here's a quick update to let you all know that I'm still breathing, walking, etc.

Last night I saw Star Trek. That is a truly great film. I LOVED IT! I had only seen one episode of Star Trek (and I don't even think it was the original show) before this, but you don't need to know the show. It really was wonderful. The night before that, I saw lots of episodes of Big Bang Theory, which is really pretty cute. Although, I think the characters would drive me crazy if I actually knew them. The night before that was a Relay for Life meeting and the night before that, the brother and I checked out a Mongolian grill, went for a walk on the beach, and then read books. Last weekend, my whole family was visiting, and we took some diverting photos (which reinforced my notion that I ought to lose some weight) and had some great wii playing time. So, that's the week in reverse.

This evening, I ran into a friend as I was leaving work, and we ended up going out for dinner - then his mom and cousins showed up as we were finishing, so we had a fun time talking while they ate. Thai food. Need I say more? I think not.

I'm thinking of just hanging out this weekend, doing some household domestic sorts of things, recovering from guests and getting ready for a super busy work week. I have a project going to construction that must be done by the end of June. Also, I've been working on straightening out some right-of-way issues in an area of town. And, Relay for Life is coming up quick! I'm thinking that I'll need a vacation by July or August. Maybe I'll fly somewhere and stay in a hotel and sit by the pool. That sounds wonderful!

If you could go on vacation right now, with nothing holding you back (budget, family, work, etc.), where would you go? Do share.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A couple of pictures to share while I'm watching The Fashion Show. First off, some babies! They slept sweetly in the yard for several hours Saturday morning. They weren't much bigger than Lillers.


Then, the Rhody parade. I got a sunburn while judging the floats - Sequim's was beautiful. Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of it. But, it was gorgeous. I do have a bunch of pictures of the motorcycle drill team! The best one - for seeing what they do - is out of focus, but I'm showing you anyway.

I also have a picture of these funny guys! Evergreen Fitness - they were so happy to be there. Endorphins, you know.

The local favorite: The Lawnchair Drill Team! They're awesome! Unfortunately, I didn't get to see their show, but they did walk by in snake formation.

I made some new friends during the parade and got a bunch of hugs from people I already know. It was a great day!

Today at the gas station, I met a couple people who are bicycling around the world. They started in 2003, and have about a year longer to go. They didn't stay long in PT - they were heading straight for the ferry. I wish them well!