Welcome to My Blog

December 25, 2912

Two minutes after Midnight...

My mother died.  My mother was diagnosed with an acquired type of Leukemia on December 4, 2012.  It came as a surprise because when she went into the emergency room it was for symptoms for a lingering cold.  Blood work revealed an elevated white blood count. 

As near as we could figure, she was exposed (to whatever caused the bone marrow to go haywire) somewhere in the 1960s to early 70s.  She had worked at jobs during that time where she came into contact with chemicals that weren't as regulated as they are today. 
Read more about her

With this entry, I will close out the year.  May 2013 be good to you.

November 28, 2012

New Blog Pages!

The first pages I worked on since I got the new computer were these Blog entries.  The blog is now switched over to the new site building program.  I had completed several before that, but it is so nice to not have to fight the old computer to get the work done. 

I still have to go into it for some stuff and still have to limp along while I try to get things moved around, but it’s a learning curve that is flattening out.  Once I’ve gotten all the files and records moved and the disk cleaned off, a friend of mine who collects computers and calculators said he’d buy it, as is, broken fan and all.  Was going to send the fan back but if he wants to attempt to fix it, so be it.

I’m getting better at the new site building program, they keep coming up with new things, but for the moment, I’m going to concentrate on getting the old pages moved into the new format.  The neat thing is I’m being forced to re-read the content and either update it or make small changes to make the content better.  I’ve combined a few of the pages to make them better as a whole. 

I’m hoping that now I can get more of the stuff done that has been sadly neglected.  There are patterns that need made into PDF files and then I have to go into the PayPal account and make the changes there.  Might even be able to set up the ordering process to make a shopping cart available for those who are interested in more than one pattern.  (Will make that available with some discounts for multiple pattern orders.)

Looking forward to tackling all this...
But I’d really Rather be Quilting!

November 26, 2012

Xiao Yi, world traveler...

Xiao Yi (pronounced Chow Yee) has arrived!  The little guy’s delivery date was 11/28 but  came on 11/23.  But that’s not the half of it!  Xiao Yi left Shenzhen, China on 11/20 at 9:44 AM, then spent the day traveling from China to Hong Kong where it visited two places before traveling on to Japan (again two places) and then to Anchorage, Alaska on the 21st.  It left Japan at 10:38 PM but arrived in Alaska at 11:08 AM—crossed the date line!  But it was still the same day and a few hours later it was headed to Memphis. The next day, the 23rd it buzzed through Colorado Springs, Colorado and arrived in Grand Junction where it was on the truck and delivered by 12:30.  This was basically three days! 

You can hardly get a letter across town, here, in three days!  My new computer, which I named Xiao Yi (which means “Little One”), came all the way from China to my door in THREE DAYS!  All for free shipping, too!  Thanks, Apple! 

It’s no wonder I want to create a T-shirt that says “I was Apple (the apple logo) when Apple wasn’t cool.”  {For those of you who remember Barbara Mandrell’s song about country—you’re already humming the tune.}  Then on the back I’d have it set up like a football jersey with “McLaughlin” in the name area.  Below it I’d have “And always a Mac!”

This is my fifth Mac in the over twenty years I’ve been working on computers.  With the exception of the first one, which I sold, I still have the other four and they still work!  The only reason the newer one replaced the previous one was I outgrew it. 

I hadn’t planned on the expense, but now that I’ve got it and am getting used to it, it was the right decision.  The work on the website will go much faster!  Well, once I get Xiao Yi’s new programs figured out.

Look for more input on the blog and maybe, just maybe, it will soon be more quilting related.  I’ve been debating whether to make the blog entries and the Newsletter all in one.  That means the newsletter of the past will somehow be tied to this blog.  Still thinking on that.
The other thing I’m trying to do is get the “Blue Ice” quilt pattern finished.  That is one of the projects that is still being worked on on my old Mac (which doesn’t have a fan to go out!) because all my graphic programs are on it.  Upgrading is still a future project for this little guy, but is a necessity to get everything in one place.

Until, the next time (which will be sooner than the last entry)...
remember, I’d rather be quilting!

Earlier in November 2012

Computer Problems...

Two or so years ago, my PC (which I had bought at a pawn shop) quit.  Since all my bookkeeping is done on QuatroPro and was stored on the PC, I was upset that I no longer had access to the files, so I went out on a limb and got another one.  The prices had dropped dramatically at that time so I was able to get a nice laptop with Windows 7 on it. 

I don’t exactly remember when I began having problems with the cooling system, but I know I had a small fan I kept beside the laptop to help keep it cool enough to set it on my lap to work.  Well, at the end of summer (end in the frame that I could not find a small fan in the stores because they were no longer selling them for summer) the fan shorted out and died.  That in itself was exciting for a few minutes, sparks every where!  After that the computer fan began a growling noise.  I bought a “cool pad” which had a fan in it and that helped some.  Then one day, the computer fan stopped all together. 

As a Mac person, I’m used to fixing my computers, if needed.  (I had to learn to trouble shoot my computers and repair them myself since the beginning—the IT guys at college refused to touch the Macs, so below their status!  So, we in the Graphic Arts department, had to do our own trouble shooting and repairs.)

So, I ordered a new fan and proceeded to try to take the computer apart to replace the fan, only to find out there was one place inside the laptop that would not let me open the case to get at the fan.  Long story, short:  The fan didn’t get replaced and in trying to get to it, something happened to the wireless connection so the blasted PC no longer could go online without being tethered to the router with a cord (that wouldn’t stay in the slot, to boot!) Not a pleasing situation when faced with 100 pages of website to re-do!

So, I spent a week making arrangements to do something about getting a new computer, one that would eventually get everything—my graphics, page design and bookkeeping into one unit.  As it is, I get my old Mac out to do the graphics and design work on the pattern PDF files and then load it onto a thumb drive, then put the Mac away and start up the PC so I can eventually get the files loaded onto it (it has gotten horribly slow).  Once done, I then have to try to upload them to the website (while holding the cord in the slot so I don’t loose the connection—fun). 

When I first built the website, the only internet connection available to me was dial-up.  Slow, slow, slow... The PC was beginning to feel like I was back in those days!  Frustrating, period.

I researched what I needed to know to make the changes.  At one point, I just reached a point where I would not even consider buying a new PC, no matter how inexpensive they are.  I even considered an iPad but couldn’t get enough information to answer my questions.  But I decided I was going back to Mac.  All that I need to do was figure out how to finance it...

My former husband let me use his credit card and as of November 16, it’s ordered and I’m now going to be making payments for the next year...

(Please note: this entry was written in retrospect)

Later in September, 2012
JAJ and other things

I have a friend, well she is an email friend. We only met once in person
and that was briefly, but we have (over the last few years) become friends through emails.

She is a mystery writer (or in some sectors: police procedurals). She has written over forty novels since her first book back in the early 1980s. A book where she did her own version of Jacqueline Suzanne’s success story.

(I didn’t know that Valley of the Dolls was a huge success because Jackie Suzanne went out to book stores all over the country, armed with her personality and a 3x5 card file. She went into a book store--armed with the owner’s name, their spouse’s name, all the kids’ names, birthdays and anniversaries--and introduced herself, then told them all about her book. It jumped from an unknown novel to a number one best seller. The rest is history!)

JAJance went to every place that was carrying her book (maybe only a couple of copies) and set up her table so she could autograph those books. Her motto is “If I wrote it, I’ll sign it!” Many of those early purchasers are still her greatest fans and some are even on the Xmas list! She told a story recently of how her mom went along to one of these early “book signing /selling” stops. No person who came near this little sales dynamo was immune to Evie Busk’s sales pitch!

During September, Ms Jance and I were emailing about a variety of topics. One was about me getting to meet a lady from the Czech Republic who came to visit a friend of mine who lives in Cedaredge, CO. This sweet little lady was imprisoned for her faith when she was 19 years old and while there, decided to use the time to translate books (given to her for reading) from German to Czech or vice versa. While in prison, she was not allowed even a Bible, but many years later she would use that ability to translate Bible literature. She speaks seven languages, including very good English.

After meeting this amazing woman, I went to work and proceeded to lock my keys inside my running car! Got out to dump the trash and didn’t know I had hit the door lock. Learned several lessons with that experience: I can’t break the windows in my car with a rock—don’t know what would break them, but the hefty rock I was using didn’t do it! Now I have two spare keys for that car. One on my “office” keyring and one in a hide-a-key box.

Also in that conversation, I was commenting on her Blog entry (that week) where Ms Jance had mentioned that many of the servicemen overseas read her novels. That week at a book signing, one young man showed her the book he was carrying the day he got shot—the book had a bullet hole in it!

Many people tell her how the books helped them through chemo-treatments or other trying situations. One woman went to a literacy class and the teacher suggested she read one of JAJ's novels. She had never read a novel in her life! The woman has now read nearly all of JAJ’s novels! When she got to meet Ms Jance and told her the story, they both hugged and cried with joy.

To think, if the professor in the Creative Writing course hadn’t told her she couldn’t be in his class, that “women can’t be writers, they should be nurses or grade school teachers”, she would’ve never had the chance to prove him wrong. And a lot of lives would not have been touched. At least one life would have been lost without her novel in his pocket that day in the Middle East!

I'm trying to get JAJ in my town for a book signing in February, maybe I can hear her speech this time!

I drove 300 miles the first time, only to find out that nothing was mentioned in the press release about the speech was reservation only. It was a good thing I did though, as the people in charge didn’t know much about her personally. Like she is 6’ tall. She was running late (they had difficulty getting some lunch after driving from Denver to Ft. Collins then the park where the library was located was packed that day. Bill had to drop her off while he finally found a parking space two blocks away!).

The women in charge of the event were frantic, so I wondered over to the front doors. There, coming through the crowd on the sidewalk, was a tall platinum blonde in a red suit jacket, looking a bit lost but coming on strong anyway. I turned to the women and told them she was here. They scrambled to meet her and take her around the back way to the room where she was to give her speech.

A few moments later, someone came out saying she wanted the "Walker Family" books. Since it was obvious the woman didn’t have a clue, I turned around to the display table and picked out all the books in the series and handed them to her so she could go back in. The ladies in charge then offered me a seat in the room. I took one look at the overcrowded room and opted to be first in line for the book signing. JAJ was later furious about the fact I didn’t get in. But she then added “It was hotter than Hell in there!” So maybe it was a good thing. We emailed later as they were going to New Mexico and I was back home. I told her about all that went on. She read my email to Bill as they drove down the road!

So that is how I have J. A. Jance as a friend.

September 11, 2012

Finally migrated!

Now I can start fixing the website! It’s a lot of work and I know it will be worth it.

Looking forward to “playing” with the new program. Although I’ve noticed in the forums there are a few who are grumbling about learning a new program. I think they’d gripe “if they were hung with a new rope” as my dad used to say (only he used stronger language).

Well, I for one, am excited to get started. Watch the site blog updates (located in the NavBar at the top) for the pages that have been fixed. They will be uploaded to it as they are completed.

August 7,2012

Still waiting...

I started this entry way back in June, thinking I was in Group 2 of the BB2 rollout. It took over a month for the SBI tech team to “migrate” the thousands of web sites in Group 2 – those lucky buggers!

I’m going to digress here. When some of the first group of “migrated” website owners started to complain about having to learn a new way of site building, I thought they were being a bit petty. What I would give to be sinking my teeth into the new program! Fortunately, there were wiser heads (in the Forums) who convincingly supported learning the new program and encouraged them to buck up and begin “playing” with it.

What to do now?

As I said, I’m not patient. This last week I’ve been trying to make some adjustments. I’ve begun to eliminate those in-between html pages by going in and fixing the “click on” links so they go straight to the PDF file.

This will be much easier when purchasing a pattern because when PayPal directs you to the "Thank You" page, you can now click and receive the pattern file.
All you need to do, then, is save a copy.

This process is a bit complicated. I have to find and make sure all the various parts of the equation are accounted for. I ended up making a step-by-step sheet to copy and paste the URLs in the correct order. Then I would edit the page I was working on so the old stuff (the in-between page) was removed and the PDF info was in it’s place. After some more work and rechecking I would then delete the html page and any links.

It’s been painstaking but I like how it’s working now. It’s probably driving the techs nuts at SBI (if they have gotten to my site – remember, I said I felt like I must be the last one!), but I’m going ahead with some of the changes so I’m ready to start when I’m “migrated”.

I’m going to leave a couple of UYOH pages intact to see what is done to them while “migration” because I’m curious. Otherwise, I’m busy deleting pages I no longer am using and cleaning up the site so I can get started on the new look when it becomes available.

Today, I’m just catching up a bit since I’m in bed with a cold. This is one of the things I hate about janitorial work–you are exposed to everyone’s germs! And believe me, most people are unaware of how their habits affect others. It’s good they use Kleenex when dealing with a cold, but what they fail to understand is those Kleenex are filled with very active germs that just the action of dumping the trash aerates them.

I was probably prone to catching them because I just came off a bout with a toothache and my system was compromised. But I really didn’t need a cold this week!

Oh well...

July 2012

Still Waiting...

They are still “migrating” the Group 2 websites (in the tens of thousands).

In reviewing the information about the difference between Group 2 and 3, I finally figured out what UYOH actually meant: Upload Your Own Html. Guess what? I’m a Group 3.

This group consists of web sites that uploaded their own html pages. I fit into that group – where, I’m not sure as there are three sub-sets with each being based upon the number of uploaded pages and degree of what was done to the pages.

You see, when I set up the patterns for PDF downloading, I put in a simple html page to redirect the customer to the download file. That’s where I got booted to Group 3.

Guess I’ll work around this speed bump.

June 11, 2010

Please Wait (little circle of doom) Waiting

Okay don’t tell me you haven’t encountered the little circle of doom. There’s a cute scene in the movie Date Night where the wife is trying to do something on a computer and time is of the essence and of course, the little circle of doom is doing its thing. “Come on, come on...” she says, frustrated.

Well, lately that seems to be the norm around here. I’m dying to put some improvements onto the website but I have to wait for new and improved upgrade migration to happen. Don’t get me wrong, I know the improvements will be awesome! But I’m beginning to wonder if I’m the last one on the list!

SBI (or Site Build It!) is my web host and the folks there are constantly doing wonderful things for their customers. They have forums to where SBIers can help other SBIers with problems with designing websites. You see, unlike most web hosts, a non-geek normal person who can barely turn on their computer CAN actually build a website without learning all the languages (html, java, etc.) or other tricks of the trade. It was the major factor for choosing SBI over any other web host, no matter how low the price!

I can build a website myself? No thousands of dollars paid out to someone who can “speak” the “language? Wow! Loved the idea.

Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t a walk in the park to get this site up and running. Yet I got it done. By myself and the help of SBI’s wonderful program of training. These people had their ear to the ground (so to speak) when they developed their hosting program. The folks at SBI knew there were people who didn’t have the college courses or the time to develop the skills to put up a website. But these people wanted a website where they could expound on something they loved. And, yes, a place they could earn a little extra income if they wanted to.

Thanks, Ken.

I found this company way back in late 2006, early 2007. I remember it was a scary move. But I took the big step and signed up (they had a good refund policy so I wasn’t out anything but time at that time). That was back when my only access to the internet was Dial-up. And man, that was a pain for sure! But I persevered and began my “Masters” course in designing my website.

They have a ten-day training program that every new SBIer has to go through. They WILL NOT even let you get a domain name until you finish the 6th day! Why? Because they want you to choose the correct niche to be in and have a name that will set you apart. That’s how the name of my site came about. I wanted to reach beginner quilters. I wanted a way to make learning a new task (skill) to be fun and really easy. Hence, the one block approach.

Well, I was able to move through the first few days on schedule, actually did two “days” in one day at one point. Then I hit day 6. I was a whole month figuring out what I really wanted to do and how to come up with a proper domain name. A lot of work and thinking went into that “day’s” work. Remember, I couldn’t do anything until I completed Day 6. I ‘m not a patient person. So that month nearly drove me to drink!

But finally, the hard work paid off. I came up with a name that described what I wanted to do with my quilting website that would set it apart (even just a little) from the rest of the quilting websites out there.

I know it’s long, and has hyphens in it, but it’s what I felt would work. And apparently it does because when I got waylaid by life’s other needs, it kept plugging away all on it’s own.

Now, to get back to the topic I started out with – waiting.

I’m waiting to make the improvements to the site I have in mind. SBI is in Stage Two of the BB2 rollout. (The stands for Block Building, the way we are able to design the website without learning the language. The BB2 will make the sites awesome!)

Stage One was for the newbies (those who had just signed on and hadn’t made page one yet) so they would never have to work in the original page building program.

But those of us who had BB1 pages were going to have to go through a “migration” process.

What is nice is that we don’t have to do anything to do the “migrating” – the fantastic people at SBI are doing that for us. But it takes time. As of Friday, they have migrated 4,000 sites and hope to have 10,000 sites done by the end of June.

They have a process and it involves how many pages a site has. I have 145 pages according to my “Site Central” account information. Well, they do tell you “content, content, content”.

So, I’m waiting for the email and logging on to check if it’s happened. Meanwhile I’ve been limiting my online activity to adding these blog entries. The blog is the only new change I’ve made besides the third column that’s showing up on the site. I’ve created a new logo for the “Look and Feel” of the site but it isn’t showing up yet on all the pages.

But the thing is, I’m antsy. I’ve got plans. But right now it’s like taking my mom shopping.

She rides the motorized carts (thank you Walmart and City Market!) To do her shopping. They are a life saver in that she can go all over the store without taxing her body (she fell two years ago and broke a hip so she has to use a walker to get around her house). But they are not fast. My walking pace is far faster! So I must walk slow and be patient. Not what I want to be doing.

Also, she likes to look. I don’t. I’m the kind of person who goes into the store with a purpose and I want to get on with the next thing on my list of To-Do’s.

I’d rather be quilting!

June 3, 2012

Everything will be alright in the end
and if it’s not alright,
-------------the end.
................................From The Best Exotic Marigold Hote

Do this little movie a favor -- go see it and tell others about it.

I guarantee you will enjoy the sights and will get at least one laugh (oh forget that, you'll laugh all the way through it)! I went last night, as a special treat to myself, and had a delightful trip to a colorful land with some of my most favorite actors.

Its unexpected success at the box office is actually sending a message -- that there are people out there who want good writing, acting and movie making. It is a refreshing breeze through the wasteland of the world of today's movie choices.

It has a message of new beginnings. No matter your age or circumstances.

Hope you take time to see the movie while in the theaters -- the sights of India really enhance the story. I'd probably react like the one character to the sights and sounds, but I'd probably be more like Judith Dench's character and make the most of my "adventure".

Loved the "teaching" session scenes (you will need to see it to understand what that means).

This movie is doing well in spite that most of the patrons are probably using their “senior” discounts!

May 29, 2012

Yesterday, I wrote that John Lennon said something when I should have used the word “wrote”. In being curious about something credited about the line – it was attributed to the song “Beautiful Boy” – so I got out my DVD of “Mr. Holland’s Opus” because I remembered it was featured in the movie. It was fun to watch those scenes again, waiting for those words.

That movie is one of my favorites because it reminds me of my step-father who was an English/Journalism teacher who did the same thing: touch many lives with his teaching style. As graduations are taking place all over, it’s nice to remember those people who believed in you when you didn’t and, in some way, inspired you to do something good – maybe even great.

Recently, I read about a local fourth grade teacher who had her classes write a letter to their future selves stating what they wanted to do when they grew up. Then as those students reached graduation, she sent them a package of mementos with that letter included. She taught for over 20 years, retired not long ago, and now only has a few of those classes of kids left to send packages to. Many of those youngsters have changed their thoughts about what they wanted to do, but there is no doubt she sticks in their minds as a pretty fantastic teacher.

A lot of the names of my teachers have faded from the top of my memory. One, whose name is lost was my fourth grade teacher. But what she did for me was introduce the magic of words. She made it a point that for a few minutes each day we sat and listened to a book being read. One of the books she read that year was “Born Free” about the lion cub, Elsa. They later made it into a movie with a beautiful song to go with it.

Two other teachers that affected me were Mr. Clark, who taught math and Mr. Witt, who taught English, I think. Mr. Clark was a big man, who realized our class had a problem: we didn’t have a good enough grasp of simple arithmetic. So, before we started on eight grade mathematics, we spent several weeks starting the day with quizzes. What was interesting was I sat right under his podium and as he boomed out his equations it was right over my head (bet the rest of the class was glad it was me, not them sitting there). So as fast as he said 7 + 12 (or something like that), we were to write down the answer by the time he moved on to the next set off numbers. He did them FAST! What I learned was how to add, subtract, multiply and divide in my head. Still do it to this day!

Mr. Witt gave me a couple of writing quirks. My r’s are written differently because I liked the way he did them. As well as my t’s at the end of a word. Another teacher used “w/” for the word “with” when short handing a sentence. I liked that, too.

One of the teachers I had in college, taught Mixed Media and was a Graphic Artist (he had his own Graphic Design business when not teaching). When I first heard of him it was all kinds of bad reports. I had formed a system in the business classes that if I heard bad reports, I’d avoid that professor. I didn’t have time to deal with teachers who didn’t teach well. In the business side of my college education, it proved to be a good rule of thumb. But I was also taking classes in Graphic Arts. I was planning to put together some kind of business that would incorporate my creative talents. Graphic Design was my fun classes and more for me than the business classes.

So, when I heard, “Don’t take Mr. Manchee’s classes...” I avoided them as long as I could. But one of the classes for the degree was “Pen and Ink” and no one else was teaching it but Mr. Manchee. I went to that class primed to not like the man, to endure the class and check it off the list of classes I needed.

Less than two minutes into that first class, I discovered two things: First, everyone who told me they hated taking his classes had a problem – they didn’t realize what he was doing with them. Second, I realized I was going to like this teacher like no other. He was someone who would push a student beyond anything that student ever imagined they could go.

I remember in one Mixed Media class, he had a student that was stumping him as how to help the young man express himself. Then one day, he hit on the solution. He gave the young man an assignment: go by a roll of butcher block paper. When the kid do so and brought it to the next class Mr. Manchee had him tape the paper across one wall of the art room. I ended up helping out on the project because I understood where he was going with this project. He realized that the young man was confined using a sketch pad – the boy needed a wall! Once he was given the way to express himself, that young man took off and created some amazing things.

That was his speciality. Pushing you to your best work. At least twice he kept pushing me to understand something. In the Pen and Ink class the breakthrough was a brush instead of a pen for me to understand the quality of lines to define the artwork. Then in Mixed Media we struggled with water color. I just had a problem with shading, until one day I got it! I was playing around, not really doing anything special, mainly trying to get the shading to work and liking the painting I was doing at the time. He was walking around just looking at what we were doing. He came up beside me, looked at the painting and said, “Wow!”

He was amazed at what I accomplished and I spent the rest of that semester trying to figure out how I did it!

He was later given a graphic design class at the “Junior” College where he worked with High School students. A lot of the kids had problems (I think it was more attention problems because they were creative people and their needs weren’t being met in normal class time) and in a short while he’d have them putting out some amazing work. One of his supervisors commented that they could give him broken kids and he fixed them.

No, he just pushed them to their best.

May 28, 2012

John Lennon once said “Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.” Was he ever correct! Or in my case Life Just Happened. Period.

It wasn’t what I had planned, or for that matter, it wasn’t what I wanted to be doing at this stage of my life. When I started this website, I had lots of plans for it. But funds ran low and I was forced to get a job cleaning offices

I didn’t plan to be scrubbing toilets and keeping other people’s places clean while my own looks like a bomb went off in it!

At one point in the last few years I added up the number of toilets
I was cleaning
in all the jobs I was doing and the astonishing number was 166 per month!

(A little word of warning: don’t ever let a plumber use your bathroom! I cleaned a training facility for plumbers and those restrooms were the very worse! Ever.
Okay, maybe not the best grammar, but so true!)

The other thing that waylaid me was some sad events that found me hesitating to relay in the newsletter, even though they were happening at that time in my life. They were the deaths of my nephew and father.

My nephew took his life when things got too overwhelming for him to cope anymore. What was upset me was, looking back at what was going on at the time, he was clinically depressed and should have been getting help. I didn’t see it because I was hearing the story from his mother and not getting the details that I would have picked up on. That is probably affected me more, that I could have helped him had I gotten the right information.

My dad’s story was a lot different. He was 82 years old. Lived a vast and adventurous life. But his last two years were spent in a nursing home after taking a bad fall that broke his hip. Sadly it wasn’t properly diagnosed until a month later when he fell because someone didn’t set the brakes on the wheelchair he was using while in the VA recovering from his injuries. He wound up having surgery to repair the new injury and the damage from the undiagnosed injury.

He ended up having a couple of strokes in those last two years. He died on Halloween night, I spent the last few days of his life by his bedside. I do not ever want to repeat that process again. My brother and sister got to see him before he dropped into that last coma. They got to visit with him and talk to him, but because my sister had this snit fit and barred me from seeing him. I didn’t get to see him until he was dying. True to the nature of my family dynamic, I was the one who pulled that duty because I lived here and they didn’t. They went home and never saw him in the coma. That took a toll on me.

I hope you aren’t offended when I say, when it is my mother’s time, I hope it’s quick and she doesn’t have to linger in any coma. I am in the same fix with her, I live here and my siblings live hours away. If she gets sick it’s me that gets called on to take care of the situation. She fell two years ago September and broke her hip. Taking care of what was going on at that time nearly killed me. I had to cancel jobs and still had to clean my offices. I was working 10 to 16 hours a day and still had to find time to be at the hospital for her. It took its toll both energy-wise and health-wise.

So, that is (in a nutshell) what has been going on in my life while I was trying to be busy making other plans to make this website more than it has been.

Boldly Go...

But the other day, I was faced with making some decisions. One of the ideas I’ve been investigating was to do a blog. The company who hosts my site has a blog feature but it wasn’t what I had in mind when they offered it as part of the site. After looking at many blogs to get ideas, I decided to make up my own blog within this site.

All this comes at a time when the hosting company is making major changes in construction of the sites. I like what I see coming and really want to use it to build my pages with. But, with change comes bumps in the road. Over the next little while (at least I hope it is only a little while) there will be changes going on within the website, like a newer version of the logo, a third column that will have some fun stuff featured in it.

I’m thinking of some really special offers and with the popularity of the Sampler Quilt, I’m getting ready to design another one, maybe even along the line of a mystery quilt.

The newsletter, that has been lacking due to “Mi Vida Loca”, will be incorporated into the blog I’m planning to start. So many of the features will be showing up in the blog; New Patterns, the Quilting and Math feature, and other features.

There is also floating around in the back of my mind the idea of doing a One Block Only Quilting Retreat or Camp. I live in the Rockies and it would be fun to have an experience where people could learn to make the One Block Only-style quilts and enjoy a little of beauty of the area. Still thinking on that one, though, so stay tuned.

It’s like that old saying, “Getting fired was the best thing to happen” for me. I had that wake up call last week when my old boss informed me that the new owners were going to take jobs away from everyone so they could do them themselves. The particular "job" they had in mind to take from me amounted to 3/4 of my income. It gave me pause to look at this whole "working my butt off process" (cleaning for a living is hard work!).

So one night, I did an online search for “Quilting Blogs” and was surprised when my website came up second on the list (even without a blog!). It made me think, what am I doing here?

This little website has been plugging away without much help from me and it’s managed to come in second on a search like that. I think it’s time I got back in the business of taking care of the website and quit saying “I’d rather be quilting” and get to doing that again.

Well, no time like the present to Boldly Go...
(Which is the idea behind the blog!)

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