Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A Little Snow Humor 2014 Edition

A re-post in honor of the East Coast South/MidAtlantic winter storm that just blew through here. And it's still relevant years later. In other words, the average local meteorologist is clueless. However, I have found a great, accurate source for weather - DT from wxrisk. He actually reads models and makes EDUCATED, accurate forecasts- only source I trust!

And in no way is this directed at the situation in AL, GA, TN etc. What has happened there is no joke. Caught unprepared, motorists/ students/ parents etc were put into a real state of emergency and my heart goes out to them.


Due to the recent snow/ice storm here in Southeastern VA, I’ve decided to take some time out from my Christmas crafting to put together this little public service announcement. After all, these wonderful southern people have allowed me (a Yank) to take up residence in their region for the past ten years; I figure it’s the least I could do.

Happy Holidays!
(Disclaimer: In no way is this meant to be offensive. Some of my favorite people are ‘Southerners’ and we often joke about the differences between the north and south, driving being one of the best topics! So please take this in fun and I hope you get a good laugh from it.)

**Winter storm advisory is in effect until 7pm tomorrow night, 
although this could change should the storm shift westward 1/18
of a millimeter. Periods of heavy snow are expected (or maybe just
rain for the coastal south – this system is unpredictable). Possible
accumulation of 1” to 8” depending on your location or if we have
read our highly sensitive, scientific equipment correctly. A winter
storm advisory means that snow will cause dangerous travel
conditions (but it’s very pretty!).

In effort to meet the anticipated needs of citizens in the southern United States, we have created a FAQs section below should you have difficulty understanding this advisory.**

Survival Tips: The Snow-Shocked Southerner

What do they mean, we’re getting snow? What the hell is that?!?!
Snow is the white stuff falling from the sky. Should you look out the window and see some of this wintry goodness blanketing the ground, drop to your knees and thank the Snow Gods for such a blessing. Then realize you have no concept of winter travel and immediately go back inside.
But I haven’t gone to the store yet!
Trust me; you will survive one day without bread and milk. I know that seems impossible now but I promise it will be okay.
My next door neighbor is a Yank and he says that anything under a foot is a joke. I asked if that meant he was going to work. He laughed for about five minutes then said there wasn’t enough money in the world to get him behind the wheel. When I pointed out that he had a big 4WD truck, he laughed even harder. I think he said something about Virginia drivers. I dunno. Eventually, I just smiled and nodded – you know I didn’t want to be rude. But what the you-know-what is going on with that Yank? They talk so darn fast, you know? I could’ve missed something. Bless his heart but he couldn’t stop that obnoxious laughter.
You’re better off checking the FAQs here:
‘Survival Tips: I Have a New Yankee Neighbor (bless his/her/their heart/s)’

**Winter storm advisory remains in effect until 7pm tomorrow night. Snow early with freezing rain and ice later. Or you may just get freezing rain or nothing at all. Look, if you want to know the weather look out your window!**

They just added ice, freezing rain and/or sleet to the forecast. What’s happening!? Where am I!?
A relative of snow, ice has the initial appearance of rain as it falls. But, DON’T BE FOOLED! Ice is nothing like rain. Ice is slick and deceptive and warrants extreme caution! Handled inappropriately, and it could kill you.
Freezing rain is precipitation that freezes upon impact with a surface. Significant accumulation is considered an ice storm. Regardless of amount, it causes treacherous road conditions. And… it could kill you.
Sleet, on the other hand, is precipitation that is already frozen (to some extent) before impact. Like ice and freezing rain, it creates a slippery road surface making travel unsafe. It too… could kill you.
Bottom line: DO NOT drive anywhere! Ice, in any of its forms… could kill you!
Take a deep breath… repeat after me… ‘Ice is slippery. Ice can kill me. It doesn’t matter if I have feet or tires. I will not leave my house. Ice is slippery. Ice can kill me.’ Chant this mantra over and over again until you’re sure you understand. Then put on your Snuggie, get a cup of hot chocolate and cuddle up on the couch. There now, all better.

FAQ's (For the Intellectually Impaired)

Whatever, dude. I’ve me a big ol' pick-up with 4WD – ain’t no way I’m staying in for this! YeeHaw!
Under no circumstance does owning a 4WD vehicle make you the super hero of snow transit. Seriously, get those delusions out of your head right now! In the event you get stuck in a snow drift (unlikely down south) then by all means utilize that little sucker, but do not get all ‘big and bad’ with your jacked up truck and think that you’re immune to the white stuff. Ice is ice and you will still lose control when you drive too fast, then slam on your breaks last minute. And I really don’t want to end up in a heap of scrap metal!
I was just wondering if there is anything special we need to know. Like, can we still get cell service and whatnot with a storm like this? Like I really can’t be without my iPhone.
When driving in snow/sleet/ice/rain, not only should drive SLOW and keep distance between you and other cars, you also need to drive and defensively. I realize this is something you are not used to, as it requires, at the very least, the following driving skills:
- Using turn signals when appropriate (changing lanes, turning, etc.). 
The stick on the left-hand side of your steering wheel will enable this device. Down = Left / Up = Right.
- Actually stopping at a red light before turning right on red.
That means putting your foot down on the break to prevent the car from moving.
- Understanding the difference between a stop sign and a yield sign (they aren't just pretty colors). And if you could also master 'merging'...
- Recognizing that you’re sharing the road with other drivers – it isn’t all about you and your need to get somewhere ASAP!
- Checking your mirrors BEFORE changing lanes to make sure there is sufficient space and that you won’t cut someone off. Remember: mirrors actually serve a purpose beyond checking out how cool you look or putting on make-up. USE THEM!
I know you just can’t wait to call your BFF's to tell them that it’s snowing, or to post a photo of the car flipped over in a ditch (which is a truck, by the way) but don’t you think now is the time to focus on the road?! I’m just saying…
-SLOW the (expletive) down! 4WD is NOT a license to speed in snow/ice nor does it make you invincible. And your actions will cause accidents, or worse, kill people!

**Winter storm advisory has been lifted. Little to no snow accumulation has been reported and most areas are now experiencing rain showers (without ice). We are now monitoring the next big system heading our way. Check back often for the latest details as we prepare for another blizzard. **

Wednesday, December 11, 2013


August. my last post was in August. I think this might be my longest hiatus yet on the blog. Not that I’m trying to break any records…What's worse is that I actually have 2 posts just about finished but never got up.

But a silent blog does not mean a silent sewing room! I have been working on (or planning) several projects. The Peninsula MQG gave us a quilt challenge with the theme, ‘weather’. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to complete my quilt by the deadline, but the planning process inspired a bunch of design ideas. Now, I just need to organize them.

No sir, that #scrappytripalong does not blong to you! Well, okay, maybe just this once. But only because you're cute...
Scout decided that the
Scrappy Trip-A-Long is his...
 I’m also happy to say that I've finished my Scrappy-Trip-A-Long quilt! I  wish I had made another row of blocks because then I’d be able to  wrap my feet in it and still be covered. Technically, it’s the first quilt that  is actually mine so I can’t complain. I’d definitely like to make another  using that technique.

 Let’s see what else… I’m about a third of the way through a tutorial/tip  guide for metal framed purses and I hope to post that within the month.  But, let’s be real, it will probably be forthcoming in the new year (see, I  originally wrote that for one of the unfinished posts).  

More paper piecing :) Or am I supposed to call it foundation piecing with paper? #newb Oops, should have included the link to the pattern since I posted on here. I found it on the Ula Lenz site:

And finally, I've started learning how to foundation paper piece. And I love the technique! I have several projects in the works but can't actually show them until after the holidays because they are gifts. However, you can see snippets on my IG and Flickr pages. In the meantime, here's one of my favorites so far. You can find the pattern here: Ulas Quiltseite

By the way...

Halloween Treat Sacks are now 20% off in the Etsy shop!

But better yet how about a coupon for 15% off the entire shop? Just enter the coupon code, BLOG15, when you checkout. Offer is only good until midnight, December 12th!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Improv Star Tutorial

I was asked to make a block of the month for my local quilt guild (Peninsula MQG) and decided stars would be fun. There are a ton of tutorials online and most of them use this method. Google ‘Improv Star Tutorials’ or ‘Wonky Star Quilt Block’ etc. and you will find a great assortment. I think the best part about this block is that you don’t have to measure, cut or make half-square triangles to create the star. YES!

It’s also easy to adjust this block to any size. You could do a really large one as a centerpiece with smaller ones all around. I like using graph paper but all you have to do is choose a size and divide by 3 then add the seam allowance (if necessary).

For example: A finished 24 inch block would need a total of (9) 8 inch blocks (24/3 = 8). Then you can add the seam allowance at ¼” making the final cut size 8.5 inches. I don’t always worry about the seam allowance unless overall size is really important. Just make sure you’re consistent with each piece. 

On a side note: 
Yesterday Alison Glass was the speaker for our Peninsula MQG meeting. It was exciting to meet a designer, especially since I was familiar with her work! I had Lucky Penny on my 'Fabric Wants' list but since I'm broke, I missed out :( Which was especially disappointing after seeing it in person - the colors are so rich - the computer monitor doesn't do it justice. 

I really enjoyed meeting her and hearing her story. Getting to see her fabric lines was also pretty sweet! If you're not familiar with her work, you really need to check it out!

You can find the tutorial on the Wandering Threads Scribd page.