Monday, November 14, 2016

Playing with blocks

I feel like I have arrived at my second childhood ... playing with blocks.
I have finished sewing 121 blocks so far.

Today I went through the piles of dark on light and light on dark and pulled out any blocks that use the same fabric so I will have 60 blocks, all with different fabrics.

Then I started laying them all out on the floor and moving them around, substituting spare blocks, and trying to find a balance with color placement and light and dark.

I am thinking of a dark color for the border that will show up the stitching of words, so I tried to keep darker blocks toward the middle. I may end up re-arranging a few of these but have begun sewing the blocks into groups of four.  I am happy with the way all the corner points match up and the way the seams look when ironed.

I will add a few more blocks to the left-overs and make a runner for my own coffee table. With mine, I do not care about repeats. I will also use some old clothing scraps with memories attached.

Somehow, half a month has flown by without any reports from family activities.

Some of these are due to lack of photos. On the 29th of October, Leia and I held our regular fall cookie factory
and in the evening, we went to a neighbourhood Indian restaurant for dinner which was to be a small birthday celebration.

SMALL, it was NOT. That was the reason it ended up in a place with more seating than my dining room table.
It included my local family, SIL, Kids on loan and close friends.
Norie made the cake and brought it along and fun and fellowship prevailed.

Next morning was Sunday and I was out early for choir practice  ... before anyone other than Nikko was up and about.

During the service, I happened to notice in the back of the bulletin that flowers for the fellowship hall had been donated by my children in celebration of my birthday. I was surprised that some mention at all had been made of a birthday but other than that, didn't think much about it.

After the service, I went up to the choir room to put away my music and hang my robe.

I was a little surprised to find no one up in the room. Leia came behind me and took my hand to go down to the fellowship hall for coffee hour.

What a shock! When I entered the room, the choir sang a birthday song they had made up specially for me. There were two  long rows of tables filled with food and the one behind me had 8 cakes, each containing ten candles.

I started at one end of the table blowing and Leia helped from the other end and a big room full of people enjoyed these refreshments provided by friends with lots of scheming and plotting. Someone brought me a plate with eight pieces of cake.

I won't need to eat dessert for the rest of November.

Every one of those cakes was different and delicious.
Note, I had to sit to eat them all.
Oh yes, and someone brought me a cup of coffee fixed to just the color I like.

They know me so well!

There were not only church friends but some others from the scouting world had also shown up.

And, here are the beautiful flowers my children donated.
And behind me is the chief plotter... president of the choir.

I left the flowers in the lobby for others to enjoy the rest of the week. They were an amazing selection of color and variety.

A few friends have sent me wonderful pictures of the celebration but I just can not put them in any spot where I can share them ...

Monday morning, my real birthday, (yes, I am an old bat born on Halloween) I left home at 4:am for rice patrol as usual. Shibuya, where I deliver the onigiri, was crammed with young people in costume and noisy celebration. Many of the homeless were having trouble finding a quiet place to rest but Nikko and I made the delivery and I returned to grab my school bag and head out to work.

Thus, my actual birthday turned out to be a quiet Monday of work. No one even knew it was my birthday or exclaimed about my age ... which at that point was only four days older than the last time they saw me.  Since at 50, I began counting down rather than up, I have enjoyed a year at 21 and am now back to my second childhood.

Maybe I could blame my lack of computer skills on my youth ... but probably that won't work because all the youngsters I know have much better knowledge than I. Doesn't it make sense that I am back to playing with blocks?


  1. CONGRATULATIONS, dear friend. What wonderful people you have around you and the idea of donating flowers that can be enjoyed by others, too, is such a generous gift. I bet it would have been hard to blow out all those candles alone, but you have this charming assistant.
    Every time I see your quilt in progress I think it is looking better and better. I agree, a darkish border would be good. Have fun!

  2. Happy, Happy Birthday! What a fun, surprise, birthday you had.

  3. The blocks look wonderful and i think they would look nice with a darker border to set them off.
    What a special surprise for your Birthday and a belated Happy Birthday to you!


  4. What lovely celebrations and for such a lovely lady. I thought of you all day on your birthday - what a fun day to have a birthday. Love the blocks and the placements - I think sometimes we all need to play with the blocks.

  5. Happy Birthday, Julie!! What a wonderful way to spend the weekend - celebrating with family and friends! I had to laugh at your line - "a cup of coffee fixed to just the color I like" - I go by color, too - great minds thinking alike again - ;))

  6. Happy Birthday and congratulations on the wonderful celebrations.How wonderful to have so many family and friends enjoy time with you..

  7. How very wonderful for all those people to make your birthday so special, they love you so much and what a great way to show it. I'm glad you had a great time, and loads of cake!! Happy Birthday!

  8. Happy Birthday Julie! That sounds like a great weekend you had. Keep well and happy sewing!

  9. Happy Birthday dear Julie! Looks like a special weekend for a special lady! Nice idea about the dark border.

  10. Happy Birthday! I like the phrase "lots of scheming and plotting"! Well done, all of them!

  11. A belated Happy Birthday Julie! What a wonderful surprise!