Not much sewing has gone on lately as Molly was here for the last two weeks. A number of things fell into place to allow her to extend her stay over the Thanksgiving holiday and we made the most of it. Her visits home, while regular, often have been filled with must-dos during her 9 years in Japan and her business trip stops over the last couple of years. She arrived with a list of the many things we 'never seem to get to' and we ticked through them all. Aside from the drudge work ~ weeding through old files, consolidating boxes of childhood through college possessions, helping me sort old Christmas decorations, etc. ~ we managed quite a bit of fun. Her husband joined us for part of the visit and the four of us travelled together down to the Thanksgiving family gathering in Maryland for several days. We got in some Christmas shopping and took a few yoga classes. I made several recipes I had forgotten about until Molly started reminiscing about childhood family meals.
We couldn't resist a side-by-side photo of our Trip Around the World projects. Although neither of us has put in recent time on them (and each plan to get back to it after the holidays), it was fun to see how closely they resemble each other, despite only one common fabric choice. We decided it was probably the influence of the contemporary Japanese quilts we lingered in front of at the many Tokyo Quilt Festivals we attended together. In fact, each includes a number of Japanese fabrics we picked up there in the vendors' malls.
Molly was here for the preview party of the annual stocking competition at The Grey Colt ~ a fun evening!
We pulled together displayed pieces and stored boxes from here and there and did an inventory of my Japanese paper mache collection. I purchased many of these while traveling with Molly and a number were gifts from her while she lived in Japan. Funny how an item can immediately bring back long forgotten memories. After she left, I realized that we missed a few.
Lots of time spent playing the addicting Ticket to Ride. One more game!
Until 1985, we always took slides, not photos. But as you might expect, because of the inconvenience we haven't looked at them in years. Over several days, Molly sorted though the little boxes and loaded up two empty reels for consecutive evening shows. We really laughed at this one, from 1983 ~ K holding a newborn Molly. For some reason, she didn't seem to like hanging out among my fabric piles on the couch! (Pre-sewing room days.)
Apparently she's gotten over that, as she did a little stash-shopping before she left.
Honestly, I hated to see her go. But no time for moping ~ it's almost Christmas!! I'm already feeling behind as the Christmas tree's been sitting in a bucket of water in the garage for three days and a long wait in line at the post office yesterday (for stamps!) reminded me that I need to get going on the little family piles waiting to be wrapped and packaged for mailing in the guest room. But first, quickly, I have a few gift ideas, a couple I meant to suggest last year ~ yes, Be*mused is your full-service quilt blog!! I'm always hunting for that *something* that a recipient won't have but would actually use. I'm receiving no compensation for my recommendations ~ they're all things I do use and have gifted! Maybe they'll help with that difficult person on your list.
I had never even heard of these before my sister mentioned getting one for her daughter several years ago. What an improvement over jumping on and off a scale, alone, then with suitcase, and trying to do the math! (This brings back memories of Molly's Hello Kitty bathroom scale in her tiny Tokyo kitchen and me, trying to cram as much fabric into each suitcase as possible before my departure...jump on, jump off, adjust, repeat...) I always take mine along on the trip for the return packing/weighing. I like this one, but I don't think the brand matters. With stricter airline baggage weight policies, it's just a wonderful gift for a traveler!
This is one of those things you think you don't need until you get one. I was skeptical at first. I thought the cleaning took more time than it was worth. But now I just do a thorough rinse and sit it on a paper towel to dry. I still occasionally chop a single clove with a knife but if you need to mince more than one, this works like magic. And no stinky fingers! The link is for a new, improved version, with a little extra room for more garlic cloves. ***Molly mentioned in a comment that this is great for mincing ginger as well!
When the kids were growing up, I hated playing board games. M would always be *game*, so to speak, and I was often the party-pooper parent, popping in occasionally to see who was winning and offer a snack. No longer! We've found several good games over the past few years but I don't think we've played any of them since we found this one in the spring. It's easy to learn and fairly quick to play (30-45 minutes a game), for 2-4 players, probably middle school age - adult. This was new to Molly & Chito before their visit and I'm sure we played at least 20 times over the two weeks. Very engaging ~ a winner!
Ok, a little family plug now. If you're looking for a holiday card for a special quilting friend, look no further! Molly started an Etsy shop, Tokodots, a while ago with quilt-themed occasion and note cards. Since her return home, she's reopened the shop and added some newly designed holiday cards to her line. You don't send holiday cards? The note card packs would make a great little gift!
One last thing ~ I've been so busy the last month, I've been quite remiss in acknowledging comments, both here and on Instagram. Please know that I read and appreciate each one and will get back to replying now that things have settled down a bit.
Back to the sewing machine! I have something new in the works and will be back with it on Friday.