Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Kidney Car - A Guest Post

Hi.  I'm Natalie's husband and I'm guest posting for Natalie, as she's knee deep in material at the moment.

Natalie wanted a Chrysler PT Cruiser from the day that the first concept car images were released.  She had it as the background on her computer for years. She bothered bugged badgered convinced me that a PT Cruiser would be the ideal replacement for her ailing but beloved Sherman (blue Nissan pickup).  Like any intelligent husband, I crumbled under pressure and agreed.

We ordered ourselves a PT Cruiser, silver, manual shift in May 2000.  No arguing over pricing, MSRP was the rule from the get go.  It arrived in October 2000, so fresh off the assembly line, the cargo bin under the passenger seat wasn't available (we never did get it).  Over the years, Natalie collected PT Cruiser stuff.  Coke cans with a PT Cruiser on it.  A PT Cruiser Hot Wheels car, silver. A superb die-cast model of a silver PT Cruiser.  A pink fairy pig that hung from the rear view mirror.

Did we say that it snowed today ?
 Natalie loved her PT Cruiser.  It bought both our sons home from the hospital, as my car only had 2 doors. The first time we had my in-laws in the car, we took it through the car wash with them, and laughed when my mother-in-law accidentally opened a rear window.  For 14 years, that car had been part of our family.

This year however, marked the end of that relationship. As a 14 year old model of a car with limited desirability, a quarter of a million on it, and manual shift, we knew we wouldn't get much selling it and no dealer wanted it as a trade.  We wanted more than just to drive it to a wreckers.   We decided to do something special with the car.

Fourteen years is a long time in car years.  We considered my nephew who just turned 16, but as we have to stay on speaking terms with my sister, we had to rule that out.  We tried to donate the car to the automotive program at my nephew's high school, but that didn't pan out either.  Then we saw the Kidney Foundation of Canada advertisement in this month's CAA magazine.

The Kidney Foundation has a program where you can donate a car, truck, or even a boat. You get a tax receipt for a minimum of $300 (depending on the ultimate value of your donation) and proceeds from the Kidney Car funds medical research and patient services for those living with kidney disease. Although we've been fortunate enough not to have a family member with kidney disease, this solution felt right.  It felt very right.

As it turns out, this world is a small one.  We learned just after making arrangements to have the car picked up by the Kidney Car folks, that a friend of Natalie's has a relative that has just received word that a kidney is available.  You can't imagine how powerful this felt.

The driver who picked our car was wonderful !
So we watched the Kidney Car tow truck arrive in the snow this morning.  The cheery driver, who had already picked up a Volkswagen Cabriolet earlier today, handled the paperwork and hooked up our car.
As we watched the car get taken away, we were pleased to hear that the transplant surgery went well, with the expectation of kidney function within the week.

Karma ?  Carma ?  Seriously, you just can't make up stuff like this.
Link to the Kidney Car Program

Bye Car !

BTW, did you notice that the first picture was of the model, not the actual car ?

Monday, 3 February 2014

Bag of the Month Club Feburary............Butterfly Sling Purse.

I am so excited I got to pattern test Emmaline's The Butterfly Sling Purse pattern before it was released for the February Bag of the Month. I had so much fun with this. I love Janelle's patterns they are very well written and her pictures, that help to explain the steps in the pattern, are very clear. When you buy one of Janelle's patterns you know that the finished product will look like the picture on the front of the pattern. (I think I nailed it.) lol

I always read the pattern before I start, and was happy to see that I had all the supplies on hand. Of course, Janelle has all the hardware in her shop http://www.emmalinebags.com  if you are not able to pick up the supplies locally. Hence, why I need to place an order for the heart shape lock.....Love it.

The hardest part for me with any patten is deciding on fabric. I seem to have a large stash of it in my sewing room. (big large stashes of fabric....there I feel better because I have admitted it.)  I have had this decor fabric for awhile as I wanted to make a clutch with it.  Soon as I read the pattern I knew it would be perfect for the Butterfly Sling.  I used Pellon TP971F Fusible Fleece Thermolam Plus and Pellon 911FF Fusible Featherweight that Janelle suggested in the pattern. Also I found my decorative zippers with great zipper pulls on them.

It is decor fabric that's the same weight as quilting cotton.  The only thing to watch for with some decor fabrics, is that the fabric shrinks when fusing on your interfacing or fusible fleece.  I ran into problems with the closure strap, as it is a little tighter than I wanted when closed.   As long as you are aware of your fabric content, you shouldn't run into any problems when fusing your interfacing and causing your fabric to shrink. Some people fuse their interfacing on before they cut out their pattern pieces, this can help insure your pattern stays true to size.

I wasn't sure if I would like the clear plastic pocket on this purse, as I always find that your I.D. sticks to the plastic and is hard to remove.  The I.D. pocket is generous in this purse, so I have not had any problems with getting my I.D. out of it.  It has a phone pocket as well, which is handy. Not having to dig through your purse is a bonus.  I find there are enough slots for all my cards, as we all seem to have tons of them. Also, there is a place to put my change, even though we no longer have pennies in Canada we do have toonies and loonies that need a place to pile up.

I didn't run into any problems making the purse other that the shrinkage of the fabric.  I find it is comfortable to wear and a good size to take out and about.  I'm sure I will have to make up a few more of these.   Of course, with most of the bags I make up now I have to add a little jewellery to add the bling.  Emmaline has a great selection.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

The Sewing Summit.........the days passed quickly.

The Sewing Summit went by quickly.  A lot was crammed in during the time I was there.

I flew in on Tuesday so I had extra time to spend on Wednesday, I decided to go find a fabric store.  I posted on the Summit Facebook page that I wanted to go to a store but they seemed to be too far away.  A couple of ladies recommended Tissu Fine Fabric  http://www.tissufabrics.com
it was worth the short walk from the hotel. The shop was stocked with so many different types of fabric to chose from. I was able to get some fabric for my metal clutch purse. Hopefully some of you were able to visit her store on the Friday and Saturday to take advance of the Sale.

I had so much fun - learned lots, laughed lots and ate lots. The time seemed to fly by I enjoyed the lectures I took as well as the hands-on classes I had.  I think I had a good balance between the lectures and hands-on classes.  I left the lectures with some new motivation to work on my blog, which I  hope to do over the next few weeks.  Also, with an interest in getting back to finishing some of the patterns I have been puttering on.

It was great to have so many ladies in one place all interested in forms of sewing whether it be quilting, sewing clothes, or bag making.  It was fun seeing a lot of great sewing going on in the sewing rooms after hours and also they amount of new bags and clothes that were made to use during the Summit.

I now have a lot of new friends interested in the same things I am, as well as a lot of new to me exciting websites to go to.

The hotel was great and is amazing how many conferences and meetings that they can put on at once. I also enjoyed that we were able to walk to the Temple Gardens and walk around in such  beautiful flower gardens. 

I had such a great time, I would love to go again sometime.  It was so great to make it to the Summit after following the posts about it for the first two years.

But the big question is did I buy more fabric on the Shop Hop or Marshmallows from Walmart?
Needless to say I didn't have to pay extra for too much weight in my suitcase. In fact the guy at the airport looked at my suitcase and said it didn't look over 50lbs so he never even weight it.

Monday, 16 September 2013

Sewing Summit...it's getting closer.

Well one sleep left and I'm on the plane to the Summit.  Can't wait, I made it to the hotel in Ottawa.I think it was a good choice, lots of construction on the 401 and 416 I believe it was 6 constructions sites we passed that had the Hwy down to one lane.  Of course the off ramp we wanted to take was closed to.  So glad I'm here already and only a 5 min drive tomorrow.  We would have been pushing it to make it on time tomorrow morning.

Look I pack light so I have room to bring stuff back with me. My carry on will have my lap top, the cords, camera and kobo.

I will try post during the Summit.