July 4, 2011

Keeping Busy During Deployments

Now I've said it many times ... and those who have followed my blog for a time has seen the results of me keeping busy during deployments. Yes, I completed my masters, worked as a civilain journalist for the Army and was selected as one of 17 (paid) Battalion level Family representatives ... but I'm talking about "me" time.

Its different for everyone, but for me, it's a variety of crafts that keep me sane ... and blogging. Since the baby arrived I must say I have been more stressed because I have noticably less time for both ... things come up, plans change, life happens. During this pass deployment I had planned to make a small quilt ... not quite a "lap quilt", but something like it. I had some beautiful fabric I had gotten at JoAnn's a few years ago that I was going to decorate the formal dining room with, but when my father-in-law passed and we got my husband's grandmother's antique cherry wood sining table and hutch, those plans changed a little. Other than adding some wine-colored curtains, the room was complete, throw rug and all.

But I fell in love with the burgandy paisley fabric and a complementing striped one, so just before he left I decided to make a simple 9-inch square quilt ... and maybe pillow case with any extra. After doing the math, I realized I could make a nearly 5-foot square quilt ... with blocks on both sides ... if I was efficient. Well, I'm a military wife, I sleep efficiently!

So I went to JoAnn's (conviently located across the street from my gym- talk about incentive!). There I found 2 complementing fabrics, a brown and a green, that didn't compete with the busy paisley and striped ones.

I came home and cut down the fabric one night after the baby went to bed. The deployment (thankfully) was only a few weeks this time and there was a lot of unplanned things, like the baby getting sick, family coming to visit, mutant mosquitoes attacking the baby causing his face to swell ... well you get the idea. So I didn't get to start sewing on it until the week hubby returned. Luckily, the large blocks and easy "patterns" allowed me to finish it over 3 days- a total of 9 hours. Each side has the same blocks, but in a different pattern.



When I completed the front and back measured 54-inches ... and you know me, I need even numbers, so I decided to add 6-inches of border. True to my luck they only had the brown fabric left, the green was gone, so I decided to get a tan that I had originally looked at but felt that a brown and tan might make the quilt a little too "dark". My luck didn't return when I get to the register and realized I was one coupon short of the items I had. Not too bad since the price was good already, but I realized when I was working out before going to the store that so far all of the fabric had either been on sale, on clearance or with a coupon. Darn! So close!

Well, I still have to add the border and find someone to quilt it for a price that won't leave me short on diapers or milk, but I'm kind of excited! I'll post photos when I get it completed ... hopefully soon.

(BTW, I'm well aware of the irony of making a quilt in the middle of summer ... in South Florida!)

Well, off to work on another quilt!

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