Thursday, January 26, 2023

Adventures in Just Being.

I've been told that I was 'high strung' from the time I was 5.

Even within the last month or so I enjoyed a pleasant chat with someone I have known since the 3rd grade who reminisced things like "Your house was always known as the 'Crafty House.' There was always SOMETHING being made."

That made me smile - and I started to recall the summer I was 10 or 11 and started up my own business of making sand candles in our old sandbox - now that we were all too grown up for sandbox playing.

I melted the wax, dug the holes in the sand, poured it all in, wicks tied to sticks balanced over the holes to keep them upright and in position while the wax cooled.

They weren't fancy - they were colored with melted crayons.  They had no special fragrances added - I spent all of my allowance into buying my first haul of wax.

I sold them to the neighbors - likely because they thought I was 'cute.' 

They were probably the ugliest sand candles on the planet - but hey.  Anything to encourage creativity right?

Did I make a million? No - I just kept putting my earnings back into more wax.

But what a summer.

Why this memory?  Because here I am in Arizona.  My body clock is still mostly on East coast time.  I'm up early, and my dad sleeps in late.  And I need to write.

And we really didn't do anything to write about yesterday because we stayed in and rested and watched a movie or two and talked about current events and shared food.  And it was perfect.

The busy 11 year old girl inside of me is making an effort to enjoy 'just being' rather than 'Let's create something'.

And sometimes it's a struggle.

It's chilly in Sun Lakes this week.  But not chilly enough to keep me from just walking through my dad's 55+ retirement neighborhood.

I love the palms and the cacti so much - and this was the perfect moment to just take in that blue blue sky.

And this prickly guy in my dad's side yard.

I love this shade of green.  I need to do more with it.

I found myself chuckling at the bird 'conferences' on the lawn around the ponds.

The grass had recently been mowed and the pleasant aroma brought a smile and a deep inhale on this 'just before dinner time' walkabout.

The citrus is abundant - everywhere.

So gorgeous!

Our only outing was to the local Safeway grocery store - I needed some things for a couple of salads, and to be also added to breakfast omelets. 

Dad lives alone, so spoiling him with some home cooking also makes me smile.

Were I at home, my evening would have been filled with a quilt in my lap, a cat on top, and relaxing evening time TV watching while working on a binding.

I'm used to having something in my hands to do - and this trip I purposely did not bring anything other than the little cat stitchery I shared yesterday - just for the plane trip.

I planned things this way so I could give more of my attention to dad.

There is a Sewing & Quilting Expo in Phoenix this weekend.  I am not attending. A big show with tons of people is just not where I want to be - and I'd rather spend my time with my dad and family making up for the time we lost over the past 3 years.

Still - I have itchy fingers and surely there is something at that show that could fulfill this compulsive need to be making something - anything - ???

No, I just need to focus on just BEING.  Not on making.  

And I can't explain why it is giving me the jitters.

I think I need more walks through the freshly mown grass and enjoy more bird conference watching.

In the mean time - this is winding down.  Our drawing happens MONDAY!

The response to my newest PDF pattern Unchained. has been WONDERFUL and that makes me so happy that you can't wait to dive in and make it, too.

Did you enter to win on The Gift-Away Post? I'll be drawing for 2 winners to each receive an Unchained PDF pattern from me along with a Roy G. Biv Color Roll from Cotton to Quilts!

Drawing happens Monday, 1/30/23!

I have placed the PDF pattern for Unchained at 25% off in both the Quiltville Store and the Quiltville Etsy Pattern Shop. No coupon needed!  Price discount good through 1/31/23.

I've cut the price on Winter Blues and Forever Mine 25% as well! NO COUPON NEEDED!

But hurry - Winter blues is only 25% off through 1/31/23.  Forever Mine pricing good through 2/14/23.

Quiltville Quote of the Day -


This says it all! 

Have a lovely day, everyone! 



  1. It's hard to not "do", "make", or 'be busy", and you'll be so glad you resisted and spent your time focused on your dad and family. You will always cherish your time together. Enjoy that gorgeous Arizona weather (even when it's a bit chilly.)

  2. Enjoy every minute with your dad. You will be happy you did. Bundle up and go for a walk. Breathe in the fresh air. Let the sun warm your face. And...enjoy every minute with your dad.

  3. Well, you've hit the nail on the head once again! So greatful dad has survived the covid pandemic and you can 'make up for lost time' -- also looking at your basic, go go go self, always something to turn to, always a step to be written a quilt to be created, requests to be answsered... of course you have the "jitters" -- yourownsweetself is used to being in constant motion -- activity - production!!! How smart of you to turn your attention to dad and filling each day with memories created by your opportunity to be together... whisper: may be he has a shirt that needs a buton sewn on? giggle, just to give you SOMEthing to hold in your hands and work on! Much love and attention to you both, maybe he'd like to go to the quilt show with you???? Safe travels, Cats in Carlsbad, CA

  4. Always take yarn, you can knit and talk or crochet and share a movie. Your hands stay busy but if the pattern is easy enough, you're free to just be with your hosts. Plus yarn doesn't weigh much, so your suitcase isn't any heavier!

  5. You are so right. It seems we get busy and forget to just be. I am glad you are getting this time to be with your dad. Life is short. Take time to enjoy the ones you love. Good advice for us all.

  6. I understand completely how you are feeling. I will be spending a wonderful week with my mother next week but the thought of no sewing for 7 days has me anxious. I am bringing some computer work to do and will do some designing when mom is napping. Rest of the time I will concentrate on time together.

  7. Well you can just cook your jitters away and fill up your Dad's freezer with home cooked goodies :) You'll make it and you might love it ;) Enjoy your time <3

  8. I totally understand. I, too, have been a crafter my whole 71 yrs, and love creating. On road trips as my husband drives, I knit, because I can't sew LOL
    But it is good for the soul to let your brain relax and take in God's creation and enjoy the time with family.

  9. I totally understand your itchiness to create. I was on a cruise last week to celebrate "our" birthday and by midweek I was really wishing I had brought at least some small handwork to do when there wasn't any good shows to see. I also love that bright grass green and can't wait to see what you will make using it. Our grass here in Central Florida is dormant now and not that pretty green. Enjoy your time with Dad every chance you get. I miss my parents dearly

  10. You are doing exactly what you should be doing.... just be with your dad.

  11. What a beautiful time to be alive and just be. So happy for you spending quality time with your dad. Oh, those blue skies, gorgeous! It makes me want to hug the world. Enjoy that precious time with your dad. Life is so fleeting, reminds me of the hourglass, the sands always make it look so full. There is such a sharp contrast between your place and your dads, both with their own unique beauty. Seeing your breakfast ingredients makes me hungry for a good omelet!

  12. I totally understand this “itchy fingers” syndrome. I’ve bound 3 quilts in the last week, and when I finished up the last one last night, I went into withdrawals from not having something to do with my hands. It’s the only thing that calms my anxiety…sitting at the machine won’t do it! I find myself anxious today just knowing I don’t have anything to work on when I’m done with necessary chores. Have fun with your dad, but don’t feel bad if you have to find something to do with your hands. We can still love those we are with..🥰

  13. The flocks of Birds look familiar. They were once small like you in your thoughts. Be like them, just enjoying the freshly mowed grass. I would be very tempted to peek in to the Quilt Store!

  14. I just want to say there is nothing at all wrong with being a ''doer'' rather than a ''be-er''. I like to always have projects myself....people are always trying to tell me to relax...but that is what is relaxing FOR ME!!! Everyone is different....I don't tell my ''be-er'' friends that they need to be up and doing....we are all different and what works for you is 100% fine. Just my 2 cents.

  15. I am glad you are relaxing even though you are having a hard time doing it. Enjoy your time with your dad.

  16. I totally get the need for something in my hands. But for those times I'm with others, I do thread crochet, working on something that I know the pattern by heart and I don't need to concentrate.

  17. oh! I'm with you there! To do nothing? Makes me crazy, unless I have a glass of wine and a good book. Even being social is hard. Something is always calling me to come do! Enjoy. The desert is beautiful this time of year.

  18. Welcome back to Arizona......your not far from me so let me know if you need some epp for your hands while dad is resting I will get it to you.

  19. Learning just to be and enjoy family is something I am strarting to embrace at 62.

  20. As a lifelong creator I can wholly identify with the struggle to be 'still' and not doing. I am getting better at though and can go longer periods without something in my hands. Enjoy and go with the flow, sometimes it is medicine we didn't even know we needed. ;-)


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