Be nice.

Dr. Michael Sorrell, president of Paul Quinn College, spoke at the Austin College commencement this year. One thing he said has stuck with me: Be nice.

He went beyond that to say that when you aren’t nice, people won’t like you. And if no one helps you [when you need it], it’s because no one likes you.

That’s harsh! But take a moment to think about people you don’t like. Are you going to go out of your way to help them? Not so much. Which takes me back to the top: Be nice. Build relationships with people. We all need friends.

I could stop there, and would have if I had not read this post from Generation Q yesterday. It appears that there is a ‘secret’ facebook group of quilters that is not being remotely nice to people who are different from them. Who knew?! There are unhappy people on facebook! Deep sighs all round, right?

I shy away from politics and religion online and in classes and I’m not going to spout opinions here. That said, my mom and grandmother taught me early on that if you can’t say something nice about someone, it’s best to say nothing at all. It’s better to make friends than it is to make enemies. It’s never nice to intentionally hurt someone else’s feelings who is doing nothing to hurt you.

So, please, let’s all do what we can to spread niceness in the quilt world, and beyond!

BeNice

Who wants these?

Wow! That was fast! These books have found a new home. Thank you, Kimberly!

These Piece O’ Cake books were printed in languages other than English which is very exciting, but I never look at them. It seems like someone could use them. Could that be you? All it would cost is shipping which will be between $6 and $14 in the US. Send me an email if you would like them: becky.pieceocake@gmail.com

French-AppOutsideLines

Applique With Attitude – French

French-CoverWithLove

Covered With Love – French

French-SliceChristmas

A Slice of Christmas – French

Portugeuse-AppSampler

The Applique Sampler with DVD – Portuguese?

Spanish-AppDelights

Applique Delights – Spanish – 2 copies

German-QuiltsWithspin

Quilts With A Spin – German – 2 copies

Learning new things…

I’m home from visiting 4 lovely guilds in the greater Kansas City area. I lectured and taught all day and into the evening for 3 days. I enjoyed all of the people I met and I hope they enjoyed me.

Because I was working so much, I missed much of the news coverage of the election. No talking heads, no in-depth analysis, I got the results. I was surprised, as you may have been, because the polls were so wrong. (Note to self: Ignore polls in the future.)

I’m not going to veer into a discussion of politics. Donald Trump was legally elected. He’s our president. I truly, sincerely, want him to be a good one. Our fates are tied to his — how can we wish the worst for him?

Lastly, I had an opportunity to visit with a woman who voted differently than I did. It was wonderful to have a conversation without rancor. Neither of us butted in with ‘well, but….” We had a series of conversations over the course of the day and I am better for it. I believe that most of the people in our country are good at heart and will, when exposed to hate, speak up in favor of love and tolerance.

I have been guilty of thinking that if those on the ‘other side’ knew what I did, they would surely think differently. That’s wrong because we each view the world from a different perspective. Understanding our differences is the first step toward figuring out how to live together in peace. I am going to seek out people who think differently than me and who are willing to have a friendly conversation about the issues.

Tomorrow Steve and I will clean house (because it’s Saturday), and work in the yard (because we can’t ignore it any more). I need to work on the computer and then, if I am very lucky, there will be time to work on the quilt I am in the middle of quilting. In short, it will be a normal weekend day… I can’t wait!

Fall, Kansas City, 2016

Fall, Kansas City, 2016

 

Let’s be nice…

I was out with my camera yesterday and spotted this sign. It made me think.

CautionSign

I have this to say about the election: I know who I voted for, I don’t know who you voted for, and I don’t want to know because I want us all to stay friends.

Many of the people I know and love are voting for the other person, but I will not let politics come between me and my friends and family. People are more important than politics.

Some of you may want to tell me I’m wrong (in all caps) but let me ask you this: When talking about politics, have you changed anyone’s mind? I have not and I’m going to stop trying. No matter who wins, I expect that life as we know it will go on.

Now I’m going to quilt, be happy, and stop worrying about things I cannot control. I hope you can do the same :-).

This and that from Boise…

I walked in the mornings in the area around my hotel and I was surprised to find this mailbox:

IMG_8145

It stood in front of a Bigelow plant. I asked someone walking out and yes, they do package tea there. I’ll bet it smells really good inside that building.

There were several trees sporting these lovely seed pods. FYI: I used my iPhone with the Camera+ app to take all of these photos. I am impressed with the quality especially when I remember that little tiny lens on the iPhone.

IMG_8176

I don’t usually take photos of what’s for lunch, but this was special. Nancy, who works at The Quilt Crossing, is also the person who makes lunch for the classes. This is a bowl that starts with warm brown rice and then you can add: chopped cabbage (green and red), green onion, roasted peanuts, 2 kinds of grilled chicken, crushed ramen noodles (not gluten free so I passed on those), and 2 options for dressing. It was fantastic!

IMG_8144

I forget just how much I like a meal in a bowl. Steve, if you see this, it’s a good choice for dinner :-).

It’s raining…

I’m home from market, unpacked and back at work. There is always something on my desk that needs attention, often to the exclusion of some other thing. I realized today that I haven’t written a blog post since I got home. How did that happen?!

Maybe the rain has something to do with it. I love rain, and rainy days do not get me down but even I am getting tired of this:

The plants look happy, and the ground will definitely be soft for weed pulling, if I find time to get to it.

I am so very thankful that we are not in danger of flooding. I hope you aren’t either. Linda’s house in Tulsa flooded before I met her and she said it’s just about the worst thing she has encountered. I have been working on a new quilt… I promise to post more on it soon.

From polished to honed…

I have a marble-topped coffee table. It came to me a year or so ago with water-rings etched into its polished surface. I did the DIY thing, and ordered the stuff to polish the marble. It wasn’t easy but it mostly worked and I was happy. Then, over the holidays, I spilled a whiskey-honey-lemon juice concoction* on it. Deep sigh. It left a big, white mark.

I’ve come to realize that we are too hard on polished marble so why not just embrace the un-polished/honed look. Since water appears to cause most rings, I decided to soak the marble top with water. I applied very wet towels let them sit for several hours.

Water did not make the polished finish go away. I thought that perhaps it was the whiskey that had taken off the polish so I decided to try vodka (my husband’s whiskey is too expensive to pour on the table).

After a few hours it was obvious that vodka wasn’t working either so I decided to consult google. It turns out that acidic liquids are the main culprit when it comes to ‘etching’ the polish off of marble. Vinegar was mentioned and I have a gallon of it. Yay! I soaked paper towels with vinegar and left it to sit.

Later I took off the paper towels and just poured on more vinegar. Yes, vinegar will take most of the polish off of a marble surface!

The surface is a little blotchy which only shows in some light, from the side. I sanded the top with fine grain sandpaper. It knocked back some of the shinier areas and I like the feel of it but I decided to once again consult google. I found out that you can, indeed, use fine wet/dry sandpaper and an orbital sander to get an even better honed surface.

I have an orbital sander but don’t want to use it in the house—too much dust. When Steve comes home he can help me take the marble to the garage and I’m going to sand it like crazy and then seal it. If any of you have scarred marble that’s bothering you, I offer this as one possible solution.

*The whiskey-honey-lemon juice concoction is what we refer to as ‘granny’s elixir’ and it is my favorite cold remedy. It doesn’t make the cold go away faster, but it does help you to feel better.