Sunday, May 28, 2017

Goofin' Off With Project Updates and Disney Cruise Trip Report Day 1

So summer has finally reached us here in the Pacific Northwest.  This Memorial Day weekend has seen us with some really beautiful weather.  A typical Pacific Northwest Memorial Day usually comes with rain...lots or rain and drizzle and more rain.  So we are venturing out to some of the beaches to celebrate this weekend.

It's been a while since I've updated.  We were so lucky to go on a Disney repositioning cruise this past week.  I had intended to take a lot of pictures, but somehow I was enjoying family so much that I didn't take nearly as many pictures as I had planned.  So you just may be stuck with a more general summary over the next few posts of our fun time with family.

Quilt Update

I want to first do a quick update on my current quilt...the Captain America quilt.  I have completed the units II-A.  

Units II-A of Captain America Quilt

I finally cut into the Captain America fabric.  In a previous post, I had mentioned that as long as I was careful with my cutting, I should have just enough of the Captain America fabric for the quilt...despite what the pattern indicated.  Well, as Murphey's Law would have it, I didn't quite measure right, so I didn't quite have enough fabric for the quilt.  

I quickly jumped on the JoAnn's website, only to find out they didn't have any more of this fabric online, but they did have some at a store about 100 miles away.  I didn't want to particularly drive 100 miles for fabric, especially not knowing if they really had it in stock.  I went to eBay and had no luck. Then I visited Etsy and finally found a seller with the fabric.  It should be here late next week. Whew!  Crisis averted!  

Cross Stitch Update

I finished my first little section of the Mickey and Pirate Friends cross stitch.  Not a whole lot to show but a lot of brown and oranges.  

Mickey and Pirate Friends - Update 05/28/2017
All is going well on this one (knocking on wood).  

Disney Cruise Trip Report Day 1 - Pre-Cruise Day

Again, I apologize for not having a lot of pictures.  Hmmm...maybe I can talk my adorable nephew into letting me use some of his pictures.  He was having a blast taking pictures.  Anywhoo...back to the pre-cruise day.  

Mr. Goofin' Off worked from home that day.  We had an afternoon flight, so we headed out to the airport about lunchtime.  Getting to the parking lot and shuttling it over to the airport was a breeze. We enjoyed having our TSA Pre-Check again.  It saves so much time and hassle going through security.  I am not sure why we didn't do it before.  

We were both hungry, so once we made it through we grabbed some Qdoba's at the airport.  The food area was packed.  They had a live guitarist playing.  Oh, how I wish I had taken more pictures.  We couldn't find a table, so a nice couple from Houston invited us to sit at their table. They had just gotten off a cruise from Alaska that morning.  They were seasoned cruisers and had enjoyed their cruise very much.  Of course, talking about cruising only made us that more excited for our cruise. 

We boarded our uneventful flight, took a taxi to the hotel, and dropped our luggage off before exploring San Diego.  It was a beautiful day in San Diego, albeit unseasonably cool that day.  We were only two blocks from the water, so we walked along the bay.  Mr. Goofin' Off wanted to see the USS Midway, so we stopped there for a few pictures.  

 
USS Midway - San Diego


After walking for a while along the water, we decided to get some dinner.  We ate outside at an outside patio at Claim Jumpers.  It was chilly, but the view of the water was nice.  As I recall, we shared a plate of appetizers and then shared a dessert.  Afterwards, we rolled ourselves back to the hotel.  

We had only been back a few minutes when we ran into Mr. Goofin' Off's parents, brother, nephew, and a cousin he hadn't seen in decades. We spent a few moments together chatting before settling in for the night.  The next day was going to be a big day as we would be boarding the ship.  

Thanks for following along.  Do you have anything special planned with your family this summer? Feel free to comment below and let me know what you're up to.  

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Goofin' Off on a Travel Day...05/13/2017 Project Updates

As hubby and I are preparing for an upcoming cruise vacation with his family, I began looking at our photos from our last trip.  I noticed that we have sort of a routine or ritual of sorts that we go through on travel days before we head off to somewhere fun...hopefully, involving something Disney.  Before I get into that, I want to give a few updates on projects over the past few days.

Quilt Update(s)


First up is the (very small) progress I've made on the quilt blocks for the Captain America quilt. There has not been a whole lot of progress due to the fact that I've been spending a lot of time winding bobbins for my new cross stitch project.  But here is what I did accomplish.  I was able to add a white strip to the bottom of the pieces that I had worked on last week.

Small Addition to the Quilt Block Units

Cross Stitching Update(s)


In addition to winding a bajillion bobbins of embroidery floss this week, I did manage to get some stitching done on the new project.  As you can see from the picture, it has mostly been browns, dark browns, medium browns, and a few dark red threads mixed in for variety.  This is so different from my the colors of my greens, lavenders and light blues of Tink.  But I can't always stitching those colors...can I?  

Update 05/13/2017 on Mickey and Friends Pirates

I have received a couple of requests to know what the final project will look like.  I have posted below a snapshot of approximately what the top quarter of the finished stitched piece is going to look like. Here is your sneak peek.

Sneak Peek of Top Quarter of Finished Piece

Travel Day Routine for the Goofin' Off Family


I don't know about you, but the Goofin' Off family has settled into a sort of routine on the day we head out to travel.  Because we live in the Seattle area, and we are usually flying long distances (like the other side of the US), we usually take an early-morning flight.  Whenever possible, we like to get nonstop flights.  This usually means that the flight leaves way too early in the morning.  I usually get up at some indecent time of the morning...around 3 a.m.  I take the time to get ready, finish packing, and double check that I packed everything.  

I am not one to do a lot of selfies, but on travel mornings I always manage to get a selfie before we head out the door.  As you can see, it's not uncommon for Mr. Goofin' Off's eyes to be half closed. He grabs and opens a can of Diet Coke before we get in the car.  

Travel Morning Selfie for May 2017 Trip

As you can see from the clock in our car from the last trip, we got in the car at 5:06 a.m.  That was only about six minutes late from when we had wanted to get on the road...not too bad for us.

The Console of the Car Says It Is 5:06 a.m. and 43 Degrees Outside

We head to the airport and park our car in a lot right off the airport property.  It takes about 15 minutes to get from the parking lot to the airport.  That's when the real fun starts...you know, getting in line to tag your bags, getting in line to check your bags, and getting in line at airport security.

Luckily, we recently got our act together and got approved for TSA Pre-Check.  Yep, that was a lifesaver this past trip. We made it through security in record time without having to take our liquids out or take our shoes off.  That left us time to pick up something to eat at the airport other than a quick stop for a Danish or croissant.  This past trip we got breakfast at Pallino Pastaria.  My breakfast came with eggs, bacon, and a fruit cup.  This was significant enough that I didn't really get hungry until the very end of the 5-1/2 hour flight.

Breakfast at Pallino Pastaria at SeaTac Airport

Once we get to the gate, it's time to settle in and wait for the flight to board.  We try to board last instead of waiting in the long lines and crowds when they start boarding.  Because that gives us a little extra time, we usually get out magazines or books...or in the case of Mr. Goofin' Off looking to see if there are any good Pokemon to catch at the airport on Pokemon GO.


Mr. Goofin' Off Playing Pokemon Go
OK, all of this talk about travel day is getting me really, really excited for upcoming vacation.  It isn't too far in the future.  I can't wait to share a few photos with you when we get back.  

Do you have any travel day routines or rituals that your family shares?  I'd love to hear about them. Just leave a comment below.  

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Goofin' Off With a Guardians Blizzard and Project Updates 5/7/2017

It's been a busy and productive week around here. We're so excited to see "Guardians of the Galaxy - Volume 2". We've decided to put off seeing the movie for this weekend so that we can enjoy some time walking and taking in the sun (even if it is still unseasonably cool). We did manage to get out and do a taste test of the Guardians of the Galaxy Blizzard at Dairy Queen. I've got a quick review at the end of my post so I can catch you up on my projects first.

I've made the first cuts of the Captain America quilt and started to piece together the first part of the blocks.

The first cuts of fabric for the quilt blocks.

First set of seams sewn...

...and then the second seams.
After posting that first set of photos, one thing is clear to me.  I desperately need to invest in a new cutting mat.  And since I know how large these finished blocks are going to be, I am thinking it needs to be a much larger mat.  I'll be checking those out on my next trip to JoAnn's.

I have not yet cut into the Captain America fabric.  I am almost to that point.  The pattern says I need 1-3/4 yards of fabric.  I only have 1-1/4 yards.  I've done the calculations in my head and on paper, and if I cut carefully, I should be fine.  Fingers crossed for a clear head and counting three times before cutting.

Before starting my next large cross stitch, I decided to finish up a WIP that I've had for a few years. The only thing left to do was the back stitching.  It only took a few hours.  I am sure you would be disappointed if it wasn't Disney (or would you?)...so of course it is.

Snow White Cross Stitch - Finished May 2017

I have several other pieces stitched from the book where I got this pattern, so I will be donating the finished squares to Love Quilts.  They always have a good use for these types of squares.

Now for the new project.  Once I printed out the pattern, I went ahead and put together all of the supplies I had in my stash for this project.  Here is what I had.

Supplies on Hand for New Pirates Cross Stitch

This piece uses approximately 200 colors of embroidery floss.  I had a little over half of the floss in my stash.  Trips to JoAnn's, Michael's, and Hobby Lobby have yielded most everything else.  I'll be getting started on this piece this week.  I am so excited to see it come to life.  We should be seeing the corner of Goofy's head and pirate hat within the first page.

I mentioned earlier how excited we are to see "Guardians of the Galaxy - Volume 2".  Since we won't be seeing it this weekend, we decided to get a "taste" of it...literally.  After seeing commercials all week for the Guardians Blizzard that Dairy Queen has, we decided to stop in to Dairy Queen and try one.  Here is a picture of the Blizzards we got.

Guardians of the Galaxy Blizzard - Dairy Queen

I had the small Blizzard.  It came in a cup with an adorable Groot on it.  Hubby had the medium Blizzard that came with Drax and Gramora on the cup.  The tables all had a Guardians of the Galaxy trivia game on them.  I must admit, as much as we loved the movie, we did horribly at the trivia. About half of the trivia came from the comic books and not the movie, so we learned a lot of fun facts.

I would give the Blizzards a four out of five Goofin' Off stars ranking.  The flavors of the mini brookies and the caramels really came through.  If you like a caramel flavoring, you'll enjoy this little baby.  If we were to go back, I would definitely order this one again.  But I wouldn't go out of my way to stop just to get one.

Have you seen the movie yet?  If so, let me know below what you thought (just please don't give any spoilers).

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Goofin' Off With Topiaries and a Farewell to Tink (For Now)

Spring has arrived in full swing with an occasional sunny day here in the Pacific Northwest.  We’re predicted to (possibly) get into the 70’s temperature-wise here for a few days.  It’s got my mind on spring and flowers and…all the beautiful flowers and topiaries we saw at the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival a few months ago.  The festival will be wrapping up pretty quick here, but the beauty is still fresh in my mind. 

I wasn’t quite ready to let go of those memories yet, as I am waiting for more sunny skies and less gray skies to appear here.  So the other day I put together a little video slide show of all the beautiful topiaries we saw there.  So if you like gardening, flowers, topiaries, or Disney (and who doesn’t love Disney), go ahead and sit back and enjoy a few moments of spring with me.  If you like, enjoy it with your favorite beverage and maybe a little bit of chocolate…or lots of chocolate.  Maybe I'll have to go grab a Ghirardelli chocolate off my desk.  


Not only is the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival wrapping up, but I have also wrapped up my Tinkerbell projects.  I’ll miss the pretty greens, blues, and lavenders of both of these projects.  The next set of projects I’ve decided to work on, while still very Disney, will be in more blacks, browns, grays, and whites.  

Here is the finish of my Tinkerbell cross stitch.  The pattern shows the title as “Tinkerbell Flying Happily.”  I know working on her sure brought a lot of smiles to my face.  I hope once it’s framed and gifted, it can bring some smiles to someone else. 

Tinkerbell Cross Stitch Finish - April 2017

I know I posted a finish of the quilted Tink quilt on my last post, but I have finished the binding now, and here is how it came out.  I won’t be missing this one as much because I plan to keep it for myself.   

Tinkerbell Quilt Finish - April 2017

So what’s up next?  Well, for cross stitch projects, I’ve got another Disney project I started a long time ago that I just need to do the back stitching for.  I imagine that will be done very quickly.  After that, I’ve chosen another extremely large project.  When I had it narrowed down to two, I let hubby make the final choice.  He chose a project which I’ll simply call Mickey and His Pirate Pals for now.  No sneak peeks on this one.  I want you to watch it come alive as I stitch it. 

In the queue for quilting projects, as you already know, is a quilt using Marvel fabrics of Captain America (and possibly Ant Man).  I’ve previewed the Captain America fabric in a previous post, but now I’ll let you peek at the rest of the fabrics.  This will be a queen-sized quilt for our bedroom.  Then it’s time to get back to pumping out some charity quilts.  So many projects…never enough time.  

Sneak Peek - Captain America Quilt Fabric Palette

Monday, April 24, 2017

Goofin' Off With Ziplocs...and Project Updates 4/24/2017

You know that commercial that asks “What’s in your wallet?”  I’m not sure why, but this morning as I was grabbing yet another Ziploc bag out of the kitchen, I thought, “What’s in your Ziploc?”  I was thinking about how many Ziplocs we use and the variety of ways that we use them.  Please don’t start to sweat thinking I am trying to sell you Ziplocs, nor am I participating in any sort of MLM scheme involving Ziplocs.  It’s just one of those odd thoughts that creeps into your mind on an early Monday morning.  Before we get too deeply into Ziplocs, I’ll give you some updates on my projects. 

The first update is for my Tinkerbell quilt.  This past weekend I bit the bullet and finally decided to try my hand at machine quilting using my Brother sewing machine.  I had fun with it and tried stitch-in-the-ditch, echo quilting, and even using a decorative stitches for quilting.  For the record:  I HAD FUN!  Seriously, the finished product is kind of a mish-mash of designs, but I had so much fun in the process.  I learned some things my machine did well, and other things that it (or I) didn’t do so well.  I’ve posted a picture below of my favorite corner of the quilt with the quilting.  



Because this project wound up being more of “learning experience” for me, I’ve decided to keep this little lap quilt for myself when it’s done rather than donate to charity.  My family will tell you I like to stay warm.  I almost always have a quilt or blanket on my lap when I’m working or cross stitching.  As an added bonus, having Tink in my room will brighten things up quite a bit.  

Next update is my Tinkerbell cross stitch.  I can’t believe I only have one more tiny section to go before this is done.  My hubby asked me the other night what I would be doing for my blog once all my Tink projects were done.  Um, you’ll have to keep an eye on my blog go find out, sweetie (wink, wink). 


Now back to my Ziploc obsession discussion.  I went to pull a Ziploc this morning so I could put my thread and bobbin together for the quilting I had done this weekend.  I kept thinking of all the Ziplocs of varying sizes I have in my sewing room/office.  I use them for so many things.  I took a peek in the refrigerator, and can you believe there was only one Ziploc in there…which was helping to keep some Colby Jack cheese from drying out.  


Here are some of the ways I am using Ziplocs in my sewing room/office: 

My techie (and I use the term techie loosely) Ziploc full of thumb drives and all the cords I use to recharge the few electronics I have…my laptop, my camera, my .mp3 player...and my never charged so don't try to call me cell phone.  


My supply of birthday cards and my list of family birthdays month-by-month.


Keeping threads together for a particular cross stitching project. 


Kits I have made up for charity quilts.  I have about a dozen patterns that call for three different fabrics and uses one yard of each fabric.  These are the perfect size for charity quilts, so when I find fabric that I think goes together well, I stash them together for the future in these Ziploc bags.  


I probably have more Ziplocs than I choose to admit in my room.  On the sort of eco-friendly side, I do re-use them when I'm finished with a project.  

So I ask you today:  What's in your Ziploc?