Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Well, here I am five days into vacation and finally posting again. Hope everyone had a good weekend, and if you are here in the States, a good holiday. Friday was wonderful and I did little but decompress and read for pleasure. Saturday was a huge family gathering in honor of my neice Janet's 40th birthday. Her parents are still in Australia, but we did our best to stand in and celebrate properly. We had a big "road rally"and pizza party with all the usual good natured jokes at the birthday girl's expense. For those who don't know, a "road rally" is a game where you use clues to give you a map for the destination you are to drive to. Once there, you find the next clue and so on. The winner is the one who finishes first. When we did this years ago, we covered a lot of ground, but our little game was all within a small neighborhood. Our team won, since we had a couple of good puzzle solvers on board.

Saturday and Sunday were quieter but no less busy. Jerry and I spent some relaxed time together and checked out a new Middle Eastern restaurant. It was one of those "mom and pop" places where the atmosphere is relaxed and the food is fabulous. It's definitely going on my list for those times when we don't feel like cooking. I was not particularly virtuous since I ate the delicious saffron rice and hot homemade pita bread along with my kabobs. I don't know the name of the pickled beet dish, but it was crunchy, tart and refreshing.

We also did lots of yard work, housework, laundry and chores (and more reading during the down time). Every July I tackle all the projects that have been piling up all year. I am absurdly pleased with myself because I have already cleaned out three closets and completely overhauled my study/ guest room. The study was mostly filled up with a queen size bed, large bookcase and entertainment center, and my little computer table was wedged in a corner. Now the queen bed is gone, replaced by a new twin that will serve as a daybed for TV watching, and I have a much bigger work table for my computer station, printer, and scanner. I got rid of the overly feminine window treatment (think cottage flowers) and substituted a sleek woven shade. Ditto for the flowery quilt. The smaller bed is now covered with a plain ecru quilt and some toss pillows. I added a striped rug from Ikea, and I like the new look much better. I feel like the happy homeowner from one of those "spend no money" design shows.

I finished reading "Gods in Alabama", Joshilyn Jackson's book. I think Dara recommended it a while back. It was an absorbing read, and I did like the author's style of storytelling. I also got my copy of "Quilt National 2005" and have been losing myself in those wonderful images. I can only imagine how much better it was in person. Congratulations again to those of you who exhibited!

As you can tell, I've been nowhere near my studio so far this vacation, but that will be what today is for. Right after my third cup of coffee and "Simply Quilts".