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Maybe it’s too early to write this.

                getting back into the routine of have Grrr here. i’m glad he’s home safe and sound. sounds like he enjoyed his trip and other than road construction had no problems. the big change with him being home is the tv being on 20 hours a day. including at least 4 hours of news in the evenings. every channel he/we watch confirms my belief that this country is broken. Government is run by dishonest greedy men that are not concerned with the actual American people. the news media warns about financial disaster, race issues, health care, education, immigration, religion, law enforcement, they cover all the natural disasters which in my mind are due to climate change which is still being denied.  and just last night they were reporting about the new mega million VA hospital that does not treat PTSD. there is no commen sense. there is no feeling of community or even civility.  and don’t get me started on the basic physical structure of the nation; roads, bridges, air quality, our very earth. and it’s not just this country, it’s world wide. wake up people - there is no planet B. and the icing on top is the government is trying to stifle the news media. 

          as much as i don’t care for his silly sit coms and re-runs maybe the best thing to do is binge watch this mindless stuff so as to not be constantly faced with the destruction of our world. 

          i’m done for now. 

          spent another day with my dentist. for years i’ve had problems with my front teeth. there’s a strip of tissue that attaches to the space between the 2 teeth and to the inside of the upper lip. when i eat something i have to actually bite into the next day that area is sore and swollen and on occasion gets infected. this dentist here in sc offered to fix it. he uses a lazer and simply removes that strip of flesh. didn’t take long and wasn’t as awful as i expected. came home and took a nap. had soup for dinner. (no biting into anything for at least 3 days.) by then the feeling had come back and i was feeling pretty pounded. took a 3 hour nap after dinner and then went to bed.  woke up much better. took the bandage out of my mouth and put the meds in the hole he made. only hurts when i touch it or smile or laugh. 

          As far as being productive this week not much has been accomplished. it’s hot with high humidity which for me spells ‘nap'. 

          there is nothing prettier than a nice warp. wove about 8 inches and decided i didn’t like it. took it out.  needs more contrast so am changing over to white. 

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Maybe i’m just having a negative week. 



                                                         ran across this a while back. the sad thing is i think people will look in the mirror and comb their hair. 

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till next time. i promise to have a better attitude. 

Maggie

All About Weaving

i read Laura Fry’s blog on a irregular basis.  she has a lot of what i call Laura’isms that she relys on. here’s a sample;     - If you can't be perfect, be consistent.  

Never use a knot where bow will do.  

It isn't finished until it's wet finished.  

A thread under tension is a thread under control.  

your mileage may vary. 

if it looks wrong - it is.  

And of course everyone's favourite - It depends.  I’ve stolen several of these to use as my signature lines on emails. and i’m sure the new weavers get tired of hearing me say these over and over. but my true reward is when i hear a previous student repeat them to a new weaver!  

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          have 3 weaving projects in different stages. in the photo the loom is in the process of being re-threaded from the front. studio loom is all re-threaded. most of the circles are showing up. i’m still of the opinion it was a bad choice to try to weave there. have to pay serious attention to the treading. hard to do when everyone is talking, walking by, asking questions, needing help, etc. maybe i’ll try treadling a straight twill and see what i get.  plus the loom is not holding tension. need to check out schacht’s web site to find out how to adjust the back brake tension system. 

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          this blue warp was a skein of hand dyed wool. not streatchy enough to give me any problems.  got 2 scarves out of it. the weft was a skein of plain teal wool. the last weft was a cotton flake in deep purple. 

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          and am currently threading a previously wound warp of a mix of red tercel for a scarf. i love it when i think far enough ahead to have already wound the warps. 

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           Now that Grrr’s home from washington progress will slow down. Louie didn’t greet him with any enthusiasm but he’s moved his sleeping arrangement to Grrr’s room. i’m feeling abandoned. he still insisted i fix his breakfast this morning. 

till next time.

Maggie



Storms and Quilts


          have now lived thru a total of 4 monsoons.  am telling the storm gods that i’m now a believer. the first 2 were non-events. the two this week convinced me. lots of houses now have blue tarps on the roofs. extensive tree damage. pools closed for clean up. Half the city had no power. It was a hell of a show!   the morning after a  neighbor from across the street came to show me my roof damage. they were watching and could see rows of shingles raise up in the wind. even after the second storm i never found any on the ground. (well, i did but they were not my color.)  now i’m waiting for the roofer to get back to me. called tuesday and they put me on the list. the company has a triage list. since i don’t have water coming thru the ceiling i’m only considered walking wounded. the condo came thru both storms  with no problems. had major trash piled up in the car port but no damage. 

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          Finished a couple more quilts on Lola. Here’s a picture of Lola naked. she’s not happy. just like a loom. naked is bad. so here’s a couple shots of what she just completed. 

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          finally finished piecing the animal print top. some how i have trouble working in that room. not sure why. i feel confined in there even with a big bay window. need to get over it.  the pieces for this were started even before we moved here. it’s not often it takes me over a year to finish making a top. 

           Had lunch at the studio yesterday. it was bring a pot luck salad Friday.  head count was 20 participants. many more than i expected. was way more successful than expected and there’s talk of a desert pot luck Friday maybe next month. 

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          have 3 new members. this is a surprise for this time of year. Several are serious want-to-be weavers impatiently waiting for the beginning classes that start in the fall. in the mean time i’ve recommended several books so at least the vocabulary won’t be completely foreign. and one has started a rug on the twining frame. 

          Enough for now. have gotten a lot accomplished while having Grrr gone. here’s a great photo of him and the kids. he’s having a good time but i think he misses me. we chat on the phone in the evenings. He never talks like that when he’s here. looking forward to having him home this next week. 

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Can’t forget Louie. this is how he watches me weave. 

later

Maggie

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Heat

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           living in the heat is like nothing i’ve experienced before. for 2 days it reached 116 and nights only got down to 99. today is cooler, 106 so far but it’s only noon. have been leaving the drapes closed and it helps but you couldn’t live without the A/C. going anywhere you travel between air conditioning to the next air conditioning. walking across the parking lot is exhausting. i’ve started coming home and taking a nap. and i’m not a nap person. i found this picture on face book and it’s so true.  these guys wear about 30 pounds of gear plus the vest under their shirts. he must be melting. 

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          got a late start today. the house is too quiet.  not much to post about. did finish a bead project. It originally consisted of 5 different crochet ropes that were ment to be bracelets.  have a small bag of un-finished jewelry items. there for a long time i couldn’t find my end caps or any findings to finish these things. Now that everything is supposedly in one place i’ve gotten better organized but decided if i connected them they’d be a nice long rope necklace. they look good together.  have an idea about another one but stringing the beads is so tedious. 

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          also finished several quilts on Lola. at one time i thought everything in those totes had bindings cut but they seem to have disappeared. brought them home and am starting a new tote. now to decide on a binding. black would be the easy pick but multi colors left over from the tumbling blocks would be best if i can find the left overs from when i made it. 

           need to finish the animal print top i’ve been avoiding. have a temporary design wall propped up in the bedroom and it’s working for now. just don’t have enough space is the story of my life. 

till next time. 

maggie

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          Have seen the dentist twice in the last week. major tooth ache. he figured out it was a sinus problem. so am using a netti pot, taking sudafed for sinus and not putting anything ice cold in my mouth. it’s slowly getting better. also got a cleaning and polishing and will be going back in several weeks for a fix on my upper front teeth. dentist told me with the dust storms a lot of people have these types of sinus problems. the picture is of Phoenix.  we’re on the outer edge and thankfully don’t get the full on dust. 

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           the photo is just after the rain stopped.  you can see how the water runs down the street. No drainage for the next couple of blocks. had a mini squall this morning for about 5 minutes but haven’t seen any more serious rain now that i’ve re-arranged the patio to keep Louie’s possessions dry. 

          Another water problem with the house. Landscaper came and repaired the watering system pipe that came apart. all was fine. 3 mornings later i hear water running while getting dressed. told Grrr and he told me it was the sprinkler system.  you bet it was!  several minutes later another neighbor knocked on our door and told us our sprinkler system was watering the entire neighborhood. seems it turned on about 5AM and never shut off.  another brokem pipe only this time under ground. the system is set to water early in the morning for about 30 minutes and turn off. does this twice a week.  water here is expensive and this next bill is going to be a shocker. in the mean time Grrr doesn’t want to bother calling the landscaper. for what this guy gets paid he’s not doing the job. i’m considering finding a new one. 

          rescued a baby bird from under the car. the nest had been in a tree between us and the next door place. didn’t realize it was that windy but the nest was on the ground. the big birds snatched one baby and the second one found refuge under the car. we needed to leave so i got a broom and moved it to under a near by bush. the mom was hanging around watching. the baby seemed ok, was missing some tail feathers but it moved ok. not sure where it went but it’s not where i put it. am hoping it was mom and not a preditor. 

          Am considering teaching a mini tapestry class at the studio. not sure what to do about looms and haven’t even thought about making handouts. do have several sample ideas in my head.  spent a day weaving at the studio on the circles warp. have decided to cut the warp off the front, re-thread the heddles according to color and tie back on. with Grrr being gone for a couple of weeks i should have time to spend over there without him feeling neglected. 

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          cut the 2 baby blankets off the loom at home.  have been avoiding the hemming. the finishing is my least favorite part of the process. just like i have 2 quilts sitting here waiting for bindings, and two strings of seed beads waiting to be crocheted into ropes. so instead of doing the things waiting for me i’m going to the condo and spend the day with Lola. there's a quilt that i mounted last week. it’s a tumbling blocks pattern. did a search on pinterest to see how other people have quilted the same pattern. found nothing exceptional so it’s going to be ruler work. 

that’s my excuse for the day. 

    Maggie     




so this is a monsoon?

            our first and second monsoon.  other than the dust preceding the storm these are way less violent than what we were used to.after all the hype and warnings we’ve heard about these storms it was kind of a let down. the rain is serious rain with enough wind to make it side ways rain but it only lasts for a short time. we were expecting hours. the winds are enough to take down shallow rooted trees which seems to be what grows here. 

          there is no drainage along the curbes and sidewalks. all the water is supposed to go to the canals between the traffic lanes. however it floods the streets on it’s way there. drove 3 blocks the other night in about 2 inches of water on the road.  nobody bothers to slow down. the rooster tails cover the cars in the next lane. 

          so my lesson is the patio needs to be re-thought.  cat food was a soggy bowl of guck. Carpet was wet half way across the room. Wednesdays storm came from a different direction so this time the cat box (which has a lid with air holes in it) was a solid mass of wet cat litter.  Louie couldn’t figure out if he was more upset over the wet food or soggy cat box. he was running back and forth between the two making sure i knew his world had collapsed.  for an insecure cat this was a catastrophe. that room needs the carpet ripped out. i’m assuming there is cement under there that we could put a finish over. squishy carpet is nasty. 

          don’t think he’s (Louie) happy with the changes i made either. both litter box and food have been moved to under the window of the arizona room. i watched him last night and he thought about pooping where his box was previously. he did a bit of scratching but reconcidered and moved to its' new location. wasn’t sure how i was going to handle it if he hadn’t changed his mind. 

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          finished two quilts for the club this week. both were scrap quilts and the stitching was easy loop d’loops. the fun thing is i recognized a lot of the fabrics as kid prints i’d donated to the group. 


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          have been knitting in the evenings and this simple scarf is almost completed. have decided to put the knitting needles away for a while and do some bead crochet next. have an idea in my head. 

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          weaving has been coming along. the warp at home has one completed baby blanket and half of another one. first one is a textured fuzzy weft and the second is basically using up full bobbins. not wild about it but sometimes these turn out better than the planned items. the warp at the studio is making circles but not complete ones. am trying to decide if i should cut it from the front and re-thread the heddles with the correct color warp or just leave it and let it happen. there is one row of fairly high contrast that is showing circles well but that’s the only place. the colors all mush together in the rest of it. 

          more house drama. and woke up to hearing water running in my closet. memtioned it to Grrr.  he was totally unimpressed and told me to check back in an hour. in the mean time the neighbor across the street pounded on our door to tell us we have a water problem and it’s running down the street. seems the outside watering system blew apart. Grrr needs to call the landscaper who installed it. that’s when he admitted he didn’t know the guys name or have his number. Duh!  i’m not dealing with it.  so we shut the sprinkler system off completely. the landscape guy is expected sometime this week. i suggested rather forcefully that he get a business card or at lest write down the guy’s information for next time.

         it’s saturday and i’m off to spend the day with Lola. 

later

maggie


Blog 413

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          Hot this week. have a feeling that is going to be my favorite phrase for the next several months. temps have reached 115 and are now going down a couple of notches because the storms are coming. Phoenix had a dust storm (haboob) and it got a little hazy here. and the freeways all stopped for a while until it blew over. 

          Took the towels off the loom and they are hemmed, cleaned up and washed. i don’t need all 8 so will be putting several up for sale. they are heavier than my normal towels. 8/4 cotton. which, if you're a weaver you know as carpet warp. it’s really a versatile thread and i’m currently working an a baby blanket using the same stuff.  like i said versatile. 

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          Have the warp on and all corrections made to the loom at the studio. am not even going to try to correct the errors in the color arrangement. it’ll just have be the way it is. now going thru my stash to find a fine thread to use for tabby that will blend in with the fall colors. searched the house yesterday and will be sorting thru the stash at the condo later today. this warp is out of my color comfort zone. it’s pale oranges, beige, different yellows.  think fall leaves like washington gets. 

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          the bracelet is for daughter in law. while they were here she shopped at all the jewelry clubs.  found a bracelet she liked with copper and rose quartz but didn’t buy it. after getting home she changed her mind and asked me to find it.  checked out all 3 places and couldn’t find it and didn’t know who the maker was to ask for another one -  so i made it. wish i’d paid more attention when she was trying them on. this is how she described it. the challenge was finding rose quartz stones with holes big enough to get 18 guage copper wire thru. i have about 12 inches of strung rose quartz stones left over if anybody needs some. let me know. 

                no new house events. we’ve come up with several things we’re going to do later in the fall when it’s cooler and Grrr gets home from washington. he’sdecided to pug A/C in the garage so he can work out there and i want the patio carpet pulled up and some kind of easy clean finish put over the cement. (i’m assuming there is cement under that carpet.)  the neighbor has a really nice patio floor that you can just sweep.  with the amount of dust, dirt and cat litter Louie tracks thru there we need it.

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          Louie had a rough week. we had another panic attack. between guessing and what the neighbor told me we’ve decided it’s coyotes. they take a short cut from the golf course down the street to between our 2 houses. they pass right next to where he sits out on his cat tree to bird watch. i got up in the morning and couldn’t find him. Grrr hadn’t seen him either. didn’t come out for breakfast. first thing i checked was if there were holes in the patio screen. nope. eventually (with a flash light) found him staring back  at me from between the wall and the platform bed frame. Would not come out even with a bribe.  during the vet visit he used a pheromone spray and it helped. made a pet store run and bought a defuser of feliway pheromones. won’t know if it’s working until the landscapers arrive. they send him into panic mode too. he’s all better today. it’s hard to get a photo of him upright. what you see in the photo is his favorite position. 

           off to the condo. have 3 guild quilts waiting for attention plus a tote of my own.  this week in my internet wanderings i came across something called batting tape. WOW. i’ve needed this for years. don’t think i’ve ever done a quilt without having left over batting. have always butted up the stray pieces and zig zag’d them together on the sewing machine. which is a hassle because i don’t have a sewing machine over there. so i end up hand stitching them together. my local quilt shop knew exactly what i was talking about and 7.00 later my life has been made easier. today i get to try it out. 

enough for now. 

Maggie

Blog 412 - Quilts

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          not much actual news this week. life is humming along. too hot to spend time outside. not many people hanging out at the pools either. so i’ve been busy at the condo.                      

          none of these are masterpieces but i’m continuing to learn a lot about quilts that are not flat, square, or contain other problematic issues. a really fat batt can hide a huge amount of problems. this first quilt was a panel with lots of borders that had never been measured to fit. or maybe they had but not to this quilt. 

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          this second one was also a panel that had been cut and parts placed in different positions. lots of speed, racing and flames of bright yellows and oranges. again used super fat batting. there were tucks within tucks but some little boy will love it. 

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          this next one is X’s and O’s with a bright print and the black and white racing checks for sashing. it’s one of mine that i’m donating. i just needed to work on a quilt a top that was flat and square with no issues other than threads hanging around. easy peasy. used multi colored bright heavy thread and low loft cotton batting. am having second thoughts about the donation part thou. 

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          i have been weaving. photos to come next week. Cut 12 yards of towels off the loom. these are primarily for my kitchen. Used 8/4 cotton carpet warp for heavy and absorbent towels. the warp was blue but just couldn’t resist doing a couple orange and purple. need to get them hemmed and cleaned up and washed and dried so you can see them next week. 

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          have also been doing some knitting in the evenings. here’s a pix but since then i’ve ripped it out. started this scarf over about 6 times and still wasn’t happy with it. kept changing the position of the colors, the size of the insets, size of the needles, tried adding additional colors. end result was i ripped it out and put the skeins back in the bucket and have moved on. too many ideas.  i need to remember i can’t use them all in one item. Simplify simplify. 

          also visited my ankle dr.  we agreed that it is slowly, very slowly getting better. i’ve been following his instructions and it took about a year to get this ugly and it’ll probably take the same amount of time to heal. he asked if he did surgery to clean up the tendons would he get his name tatoo’d on my body. nope. the ankle is bad but it’s not quality of life bad. i can still hobble around.

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Fun Fact

later

Maggie

longest & hottest day of the year (so far)

          temps generally over 110. it’s hot!  several days ago i was toting boxes of finished quilts across the black top parking lot into the quilting studio. by the second trip i was cooked.  they weren’t heavy, awkward but not heavy but the heat radiating off the parking lot was overwhelming. next time i’ll ask for a push cart. we still haven’t seen any rain. nobdy here spends much time out doors this time of year. not even the golfers. and the pools aren’t as crowded as i expect. course about 10-15 minutes of direct sun is all i can do even with sun screen. 

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          picked up my new car. looks just like the last one only silver gray. a lot more controls and safety features. and a 6 year warranty.  but actually driving it i can’t really notice any difference.  this one has temperature control. set the thermostat to 65, or what ever you choose, hit automatic and let it do it’s thing.  never have to fiddle with the dials again. i also have to learn that the back hatch door closes automatically. took a bad whack on the head. was off to the side so the camera didn’t see me. my right eye didn’t work well for a couple of hours, had a headache and large goose egg but it never broke the skin. was worried about bleeding all over the new car. 

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          Grrr finished the coffee table. it’s a masterpiece, the focal point in the living room.  the wood on top is Zebra wood and the rest of the table is walnut. it’s also a show place for his police paraphernalia, it’s a place to feature items he actually used while working and different pieces he’s collected over the years. even his dudley do-right wrist watch that i gave him about a million years ago. (And i don’t need any snarky comments about the number of sets of hand cuffs in there.) and no - the gun has no firing pin.  the top comes off so he can change out the display on occasion. he does have a huge collection. 

          been spending weekends at the condo with Lola working on both my own and the clubs quilts. this time they sent 5 home with me plus a huge roll of batting that takes up the entire back seat of the car. have not been in the sewing room. am hoping my portable design wall has reached the top of Grrr’s ‘to do’ list. am kind of stuck getting this current top together until then. but i have been weaving. have lost track of what number dish towel it is i’m working on. When i reach the end of the warp i’m done. and the loom at the studio is all threaded. sure picked a bad pattern to work on over there. so much going on that paying attention and counting ends and repeats has been a challenge. but next week i can start winding on and checking for errors. and there will be a lot of them. from the back of the loom i’m unable to tell which ends are the pattern threads and which are the back ground threads. will have lots of fixing to do besides re-sleying because i deliberately skipped several groups of ends. 

and i mustn’t leave out Louie pictures.   

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He loves feet.  

till next time.

Maggie

blog #410


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          the large gilmore loom at the studio is now living in it’s new home and the club even made a little $ on it. a gal from Tuscon called Gilmore (Bob) and he assured her it would fit in a Subaru outback without having to take it apart. he was wrong. Maybe it would have fit in a Forrester but they couldn’t get it thru the hatch. so late friday evening we were dismantling that loom out side the double glass doors of the studio. security folks kept walking by to check on us. we’d of made lousy theives. but she and the loom are back home and even beat the rain. 

          MONSOON WARNINGS!  the proper definition of monsoon is:  a seasonal prevailing wind in the region of South and Southeast Asia, blowing from the southwest between May and September bringing rain. 

          so far in my limited experience it’s all fake news. haven't seen a drop.  in washington we describe rain with a multitude of words:  condensed sunshine, rainfall, precipitation, droplets, wet weather, drizzle , shower, storm, cloudburst, torrent, downpour, deluge, storm, flood, torrent, flurry, liquid sunshine, cats and dogs, wet air, water bombs, showers, heavy mist. i’m sure there are move but enough for now.

          Am in the process of buying a new car. 3 weeks past warranty my Subaru has a very expensive problem. the check engine light goes on along with a bunch of others. the eye sight and crash avoidance shut off, the power assist turns off.  drove directly to the dealer and he kept it. Decided that it needed the 30 thou maintance as long as it was here. mileage wise it was early but lets get it over with.  picked it up the next day and on my way home it had a completely new issue. drove right back to the dealer and told them they weren’t done. at that point decided on a test drive  a car with 28 thou miles should not have these types of problems. 

          The 2018’s have a lot more safety features. it’s almost a ‘hands free’ car. not only does it complain when you get too close to the lane lines it actually corrects and puts you back where you should be. i drove down 99 without touching the steering wheel. salesman got a little freeked out. told me this was not a ‘self driving car’ and to please put my hands back on the wheel. and foresters rate excellent on crash tests and in consumer reports so i’m sticking with them. also adding a 6 year warranty to my accessories. with all the high tech in that car there’s more to go wrong. 

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          good news - the quilters are back to meeting in the evenings. thinking enough of us complained that the rcsc board got involved. thank you Merna. guess that means i need to head to the condo and finish their quilts i have there. these are quick photos of ones i need to return. currently working on a panel of the solar system. stitching rocket ships on that one. 

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Later.      Maggie