Posted in 2020, Aging, Challenge, Computers, humor, kathy70, Quarantine, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Challenge #36 Shopping Spree

This challenge comes from a small writing group.  We have a large series of random questions that we answer and share.  The goal is to answer at least one per week. My personal goal is to do this for 1 year.


Do you prefer online shopping or in-store shopping?  Why?

A Shopping Spree

Let me start by explaining that this group was formed in September of 2019, no idea of a world wide pandemic was even a concept at that time.  All these questions were  simply looking at a changing world.

Fast forward to 2020 and this question takes on a whole new meaning and resonates with people who never even considered online as an option.  (Note to self, check with my non computer comfortable friends and see how they are shopping.)  Needless to say, my response to this is very different today than last year.

In today’s world for almost everything but fabric and shoes online shopping is the new winner for me.  I tend to spend less online because I can hop from screen to screen and check out all the prices,  I can also do this at 3 AM when I can’t sleep because I am worrying about the pandemic.  I am not a drunk shopper which some 3 AM shoppers are so no surprises arrive two weeks later.  Some friends are on both ends of this scenario, they will remain nameless.

Fabric is hard for me to buy online.  A friend once said it was fun to watch me in a fabric store because I shop mostly with my hands.  I walk down the aisle with my hands  touching on both sides and my second reaction is to color or pattern.  So I have to be backed against the wall to buy fabric online.

The other thing is shoes.  I have wonky feet and had one surgery and don’t really want more so I do wear the comfy granny type shoes.  My granddaughter is the queen of online shoe shopping, before her wedding a shoe box arrived every other day it seemed. She ordered a variety knowing she would not keep them all.  Some had to be shipped back but some had returns to their local store.  This is a good thing to check when shopping online.

How do you feel about online shopping?  I’s a bit sad to see the changes in the brick and mortar shops.  I would like to see a world where a mom and pop local store could expect to fill a shop and have walk in traffic.  It has been a while since I have been in any remote locations where they have those 10 foot by 25 foot shops that a single person can operate.  There is no mall where that fits, if they have a kiosk the rent is usually out of range.  So maybe online is the only answer now????





Posted in 2020, 99 words, Chicago, kathy70, Quarantine, Quilts, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Good Vibrations

This is for the 99 word challenge based on the prompt.

How long since I felt vibrations about something, it was just a little over a week ago.  A friend put a picture of a quilt block up and it drew me in totally.  I created 4 similar blocks in just over a week using scraps.  Unheard of.   New fabric’s quarantined.

I am now in the final stage of quilting the entire quilt inspired by that picture.

It is 4 faces made from random fabric pieces and things like a purple nose seemed to work for me.  Today a friend reminded me about a quilt show  looking for covid-19 projects to display.

Posted in 2020, Challenge, humor, kathy70, Quarantine, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Challenge #24 My New Business Venture

This challenge comes from a small writing group.  We have a large series of questions that we answer and share.  the goal is to answer at least one per week.  (This is just like being in writing class in school where you are assigned the topic to write about except my diploma does not depend on my grade.)


If you were to start a new business right this minute, what would it be?  Describe it.


Very strange name for my business would be the above and it would be for the new normal of wearing a fabric face mask every day.  Due to the nature of this pandemic we are in the middle of and who know when we may come out of it, if ever.  We know things are going to change in our daily life and this may be one of the changes.  Fabric face masks are now the new version of a Victory Garden, made for the benefit of all.

These masks are everywhere.  Loads of instructions on youtube, groups sharing pdf files with instructions, every diy source showing us how to make them.  Online garage sale type groups have individuals selling these for a very inflated price, etsy merchants making a quick over-priced buck off of other peoples fear or need.

The skill level to make them is pretty minimal, only a sewing machine and a relatively small amount of fabric involved. Some people I know are putting them out by the hundreds all from materials they already have on hand.  If you know someone who sews for a hobby, ask to see their stash and you will probably be surprised at the volume.  Many people who sew, purchase a small amount more than necessary for the project they are working on, just in case.  All these little bits of what’s left, become the masks.

I have visions of my mask stash in every color of the rainbow to match today’s outfit.  The daytime and nite-time version, bling or no bling.  Special ones for holidays or special occasions like birthdays. Masks that display my favorite sports team or one of my hobbies or in my school colors.  I need to get to my machine quick!!

Posted in 2020, 9/11, Aging, Chicago, humor, kathy70, Poland, Quarantine, Quilts, Sewing, Travel, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Reflections On A Changing World

The difficulties of today’s world bring to mind other earth shattering events that I managed to live through.  In the early 50’s I was a young child spending the summer with my aunt and uncle and three cousins at their house in the country.  This was something I did many summers at one of my four aunts homes.  All the cousins at this house were older than I was and all were boys, one of them did require a wheelchair and braces to get around as a result of having polio when he was younger.  One day before the end of summer my aunt helped me get ready to come home to Chicago a bit earlier than expected.  I was put on a train and my dad picked me up at the train station and immediately took me to the doctors office.  There I was given a shot.  They had developed a vaccine for polio and that’s what my doctor gave me.  And the world changed.

In the spring of 1963 I went on a trip with my school to Washington DC.  While on that trip we learned that John F. Kennedy would be dedicating a memorial to Paderewski in Arlington National Cemetery and our plans were changed to go to this.  This was a very last minute event and we lined the sidewalk that he walked to get to the podium for his speech. I was about 5 feet away from the President at that time and this made him much larger than life in my eyes.  I was struck by how quickly he walked, how handsome he was and when the sun hit his hair the dark red color of it.  Kennedy spoke about why the composers  body was in this country and not Poland at that time, since Poland was still not a free country.  It took until 1992 for his body to be return to his native Poland.  What an honor we had and no idea we would participate in this.  Later that year he was killed.  And the world changed.

In 1968 I was living just outside Washington DC and that spring I was able to see the display of the Cherry Blossoms in bloom one day before my first daughter was born.  At that time since it was a military hospital I was in a room with 9 other women and there was no television or radio allowed.  We had no knowledge of what was happening unless one of the husbands came in and told us, which they were advised not to.  A few days later while still in the hospital I looked out the windows of the hospital and saw the city of Washington DC on fire.  With plumes of black smoke rising from various parts of the city.  This was the aftermath from the killing of Dr. Martin Luther King.  And the world changed.

A few short months later, I woke in the middle of the night to hear about the death of Bobby Kennedy.  This coming on the heels of Dr. King’s death caused many changes to happen that may not have been obvious to everyone.  Little things  started happening and the citizens of this country were no longer as innocent and may have become a bit jaded and less trusting.  It seemed we had no idea where the next trauma was coming from and in the background of all of this was a war going on in Vietnam.  Protests and marches were going on all over this country people were trying to have their voices heard.  Many were trying just to find their voices. And the world changed.

In the 80’s we had the start of AIDS-HIV in this country and for the most part it was not talked about and we did not really have to worry about it because it only happened to “gay” men. Then confusion and panic that originally surrounded this entire time was very similar to what is happening currently with this pandemic.  Monumental strides have happened in the medical knowledge and the survival rate from that disease but it was not an easy battle.  Sadly, I had friends who died alone because of the initial stigma that was associated with it and the lack of knowledge about how this disease could ever be survivable.  Washington DC was one site for the display of the AIDS quilt panels and I flew in to see this and walked for hours among the panels laid out on the Mall.  I talked and laughed and cried with strangers about the beauty and the sadness of this  display.  I marched for the first time in my life in a protest march down Pennsylvania Avenue with lit candles  to represent the thousands known and unknown represented in that quilt.  I listened to the names being read of those who had died.  And the world changed.

I can only briefly mention the events of September 11, 2001 because I am still very raw in many ways and I work hard to control the trauma I feel daily because of those horrific events. The swift activity and global yet personal nature of that day are often still very fresh and yet the lingering sorrow never seems to go away. I have a young friend from another country who recently said “Well it’s been a long time now and things are just like before aren’t they?” I am sure part of me will never be whole again.  And the world changed.

Today, I cry easily, I have for many years been that person who cried at a Hallmark commercial, now I cry at the weather forecast. I despair because I have no ability to do anything of significance to help except stay at home. This should be a great time to work on those craft projects I have been stockpiling for years.  Then my mind wanders into strange territory and I find it difficult to sit down and try to sketch a simple flower. I have added long solo walks so perhaps I will come out the other end of this a healthier person.

And the world will change.






Posted in 2020, Airplane, kathy70, Quilts, Sewing, Travel, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Quilt Show Time!!!

This makes me so happy!  If you have read any of my blog in the past, you may notice a quilty theme running through it.  I love everything quilts.  I love to sleep under them,  I love to make them,  I love to see other quilts, I love shopping at quilt shops, yes I really love quilts.

Next week I get to go to my all time favorite quilt show.  Pigeon Forge, TN has Quiltfest and it really is the best show ever.  When I first began quilting there were 2 really big shows, one was in Paducah, Ky the other in Sisters, Or.  I have been lucky enough to have attended both of these shows.  Over the years I have gone to quilt shows all over the US and a couple in other countries, some are really big and some are really small,  all of them are a treat to attend.

Over the next few weeks I know I will be sharing photos of some of the amazing quilts from this show.  Last year they had over 600 quilts on display and I am sure that this year will be just as good if not better.  Here are a few of the quilts I have shared in the past, I hope you enjoy.

Posted in 2020, Cats, Challenge, Computers, humor, kathy70, Quilts, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Challenge #16 Extra Room

This challenge comes from a small writing group.  We have a large series of random questions that we answer and share.  The goal is to answer at least one per week.


If you had an extra room in your house, what would you use it for?

My extra room.

Who doesn’t love extra rooms, it’s kind of like having extra cash or finding money in your pocket you forgot you put there.  Just puts a smile on your face.

At one point I had more rooms than people living in my place so I actually had an extra room, it started life as a guest bedroom.  After a few years of having only two overnight guests, I finally said enough is enough and lets make this far more useful to me, so it became a sewing room.

My initial thoughts were to move the bed to one side of the room and put my sewing machine and table and fabric on the other side.  That lasted for a couple of months, then the bed went and storage shelves were added so I could fit my fabric stash and my craft supplies.  This was the life of the extra room until I began to move, then it was the first room to get packed up and became the holding room for all the boxes and furniture.

Today, I would do the same with an extra room.  I have had a few friends who have done some really fun things with extra rooms that might change my mind.  One of my friends has turned that extra room into floor to ceiling storage, with shelves for storage and careful stacking, all the walls are hidden by boxes and furniture.  I have a friend who uses her extra room as a TV room and has completely banned her family from the living room with electronics and no television.  This room has become the  electronics center of the house and the TV is pretty much running non-stop, but everyone walking into the house doesn’t hear it.

Another friend has the spare room turned into a meditation/yoga room.  Painted in calm soothing colors with inspirational quotes on the walls it really is a calm place.  A scented candle or incense burning transports you to a serene and restful place almost instantly.

One of the coolest things I have seen is a room that is pretty much the cats playroom.  With  shelves and hiding up high on the walls and ramps that allow cat only access they seem to love the safety of their space away from all people.    I think the luxury of an extra room really can become any adult play room or a reflection of their unique personality.



Posted in 2020, kathy70, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Knitting Hats


Sometimes when the weather forces me inside a lot I take up a childhood skill of knitting or crocheting. Last year I had a friend knit 1 hat a day to be donated to a homeless shelter.  365 hats!!!!  She had a  lot of donated yarn to help her do this project.

Hat Pattern

Cast on 49 sts.
Row 1, k1, p1 ending with k1
Row 2, p1, k1
Repeat rows 1 and 2 to 3 inches.  End having worked row 1.
Increase row,  k1 , KFB, to end of row , 50 sts.
Work in stockinette stitch as follows:
Row 1, purl all stitches.
Row 2, knit all stitches.
Repeat rows 1 and 2 until piece measures 6 inches. End having worked row 1.  (For the infant hat I just guessed at the size, not 6 inches.)
Decrease rows,
Row 1, k3, k2 tog, repeat to end of row. (40 sts)
Row 2 and all even rows, purl all stitches.
Row 3, k2, k2 tog, repeat to end of row. (30 sts)
Row 5, k1, k2 tog, repeat to end of row. (20 sts)
Row 7,  k2 tog, repeat to end of row. (10 sts)
With working yarn measure out a length that’s 3 times the length of seam. Cut the yarn loose.
Thread the yarn onto a tapestry needle and seam the hat together.  Weave in ends.
Can be topped with a pom pom.
I used straight needles 10, 9 and 3.  I will do a larger size for a man’s hat, although with the ribbing it stretches beautifully.  I used 2 strands of yarn on the 2 larger ones and only 1 on the infant size, and it really is a newborn size.  I have some wool blend that I plan to used for a man’s hat.
I hope to do another 4 or 5, just to keep me busy, no where near the year long project my friend who was my inspiration did.  I don’t have that level of patience.
Let me know how this pattern works for you.  I did finish this in one day which is what I was looking for, a short commitment project. 🙂
I have found several organizations in the Chicagoland area who distribute hats to people who might need them. Hopefully I will be able to add 6 or 7 hats to someone’s project to keep others warm.
Still knitting.
Posted in 2020, Aging, humor, kathy70, Quilts, Sewing, Travel, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Welcome 2020

I wish you all a Happy New Year.  I know it sounds silly, but I am glad I made it to 2020, as this year came closer to my reality, I just thought maybe because of the number like 2000, lets pray for this to be a great year.  I will turn 74 this year and I hope to add at least one new country to my passport.  I looked up a quote to share for this day and this is the one that hit me most.


“Don’t live the same year 75 times and call it a life.”   Robin Sharma

Because I am quickly approaching 75, this kind of hit me between the eyes.  What new things do I need to look at, other than getting older to adjust in my life.  On Robin’s FaceBook page he had some new year suggestions, less of one thing and more of another and I thought that’s good, replace a bad habit with a good one. So I am trying for 20 in honor of 2020.

    1. Less busy work.                                        More quilting.
    2. Less swearing.                                          More quilting.
    3. Less coffee.                                                More quilting.
    4. Less silly spending of money.                More quilting.
    5. Less gossip.                                                More quilting.
    6. Less salt.                                                     More quilting.
    7. Less licking the spoon.                            More quilting.
    8. Less using phone or tablet in bed.        More quilting.
    9. Less chocolate.                                     More dark chocolate.
    10. Less fizzy drinks.                                      More quilting.
    11. Less judging people.                                 More quilting.
    12. Less red meat.                                           More quilting.
    13. Less mindless TV.                                     More quilting.
    14. Less sitting at home.                                More quilting.
    15. Less passing by flowers.                         More quilting.
    16. Less toxic people.                                     More quilting.
    17. Less trying for perfection.                      More quilting.
    18. Less multitasking.                                    More quilting.
    19. Less negative people.                              More quilting.
    20. Less showing up late.                              More quilting.

While I personally do not have all of these bad habits, I think some of them would be easy to fall into.  I really think a short version of this list, maybe 3 habits that you want to change for good habits would be more realistic for me to accomplish.  Now to decide if my first quilt of the year will be traditional or modern.



Posted in 2019, Aging, Challenge, Haloween, humor, kathy70, Sewing, Uncategorized, Writing, Yes

Challenge #3

The current challenge is to list the most creative costume I have ever seen or worn.

My dad was the most amazing at doing specialty make-up.  One year we decided on my being a hobo for Halloween and he gave me, at age 8 or 9, the best looking 5 o’clock shadow ever.

In my late teens, my mom came up with my costume of being a Playtex commercial. Now you youngsters won’t get the old ad, sorry.  So I wore a black turtleneck and tights with a bra and girdle over them.  Good thing I was young and skinny and very foolish then. It did make a statement walking into the room. 🙂

When my children were young one had a costume party at the roller rink.  One of the 10 year old boys came dressed as an old woman.  Good attitude made it one of the best costumes and most creative.


At one point I foolishly thought the entire family should wear coordinated costumes. (What was I thinking, I would be the one to make them all.) I decided that Pierrot and Pierrette costumes would be easiest.  This way we did not have to wear any masks, just white make-up on our faces.  Luckily they were finished and then became hand-me-downs for the next few years.

A family member made that same call for coordinated costumes and they showed up years later with purchased costumes for their family.  All condiments, ketchup, mustard, relish and pickles and the family pet was dressed as a hot dog.  Very cute.

At a costume party a gentleman I know came as Willie Nelson and Julio Iglesias.  Half his costume was Willie and the other was Julio.  Shirt and pants cut apart and sewn together.  Each foot wore a different shoe.  Half the hair was long and the other was short.  Well thought out and very cool costume.