Pieced Together

Remember that project I was starting? I’m done with the main part. I’ve made my first quilt!


Here’s the top completed. I’ve cut the fabric, laid out the pattern, and sewn the pieces. My mom has been a great instructor and has been patient with my quirky way of thinking things through.
Now I’ll need to put the backing on and then quilt the whole thing.
More pictures to come!


Let the Sewing Commence!


My mom is helping me to get started on a new project. I spent a good part of my day measuring and cutting fabric. For someone like me who tends to over think EVERYTHING, even this part was hard to accomplish. I’m scared to see how difficult I make everything once I start piecing it together.

The fabric above is what my mom gave me to work with and the prints are just lovely. I’m only giving you a teaser of the edges of the fabric so maybe you’ll come back and check on the progress. More pictures to come…

Looking for a New Hobby…

It’s been one month since we pulled up to the curb at my mom’s house in West Virginia with all of our possessions packed in a truck and trailer. My husband found a job one week after arriving and after two and a half weeks on the job he was promoted to shop foreman. My job search hasn’t been as fruitful and I’m trying to cope with that.

I’ve worked pretty much non-stop since I was 18. I’ve always had a job and have occasionally worked two at once. So to have been out of work for the past five weeks seems strange to me. But let me clarify something… My husband has said that I don’t HAVE to work. I can if I want to, but we are so far getting by with just his income. I know that this is due, in part, to the fact that we live with my mother right now and don’t have a lot of extra expenses. So my husband has told me that I can take my time and find that “right job” when it comes along. “No rush,” he says.

This is such a foreign concept to me, being provided for, being taken care of. I’m sure I should be relishing in all the free time I have. I could take up knitting! I could learn quilting from my mom! I could memorize the player stats for the WVU Mountaineers! I could start a neighborhood watch program and figure out which neighbor’s dog is pooping on our front lawn… So far I’ve spent most of my time taking trips around town with my mom, watching TV, and reorganizing my underwear drawer.

Maybe I should start blogging again…

That’s Where You Want to Go…

Applying for jobs out here is a whole other animal. My husband went to one place but they weren’t hiring. So that guy sent him to another place where he thought they might be looking for help, but when we checked there they weren’t hiring either. Then that guy sent him to check out another place.
And the fun thing is that no one gives street names with their directions. Our last instructions were:
Guy: “You go past the courthouse and turn and go over the bridge, then go past the bowling alley. You know where the bowling alley is?”
Mark: “I know where A bowling alley is.”
Guy: “That’s THE bowling alley. So you go past that and then you’ll see the new storage place on the right. You’ll see the guy’s shop with two big bay doors. That guy does the same shit you do. That’s where you want to go.”
Funny thing is, those directions were spot on.

Always a Passenger…

I’m writing this installation from the passenger seat of a 17 foot U-Haul truck that’s rolling down the highway toward West Virginia. Six and a half weeks ago my husband and I made the decision to uproot ourselves from Idaho (where I’ve lived the past 16 years) and head east to West Virginia to be closer to some of my family. So today, after five days of packing and a full day of cleaning, we pulled away from our house to start a new adventure.
I’ve been in this truck for the past six and a half hours, excluding a few pit stops along the way. My husband has been driving this truck and my son is driving our pickup truck, which is currently pulling a small enclosed trailer. We’re supposed to be stopping in Cheyenne, Wyoming but we’re most likely going to fall about four hours short of that goal. There were a couple of setbacks this morning, such as the property manager showing up late for our walk through and then having to replace the tire on our trailer.
It’s been a long day and I know my husband needed a break so I happily offered up myself as an alternate driver. (This was part of our original plan; me taking turns driving the two vehicles to give my husband and son breaks).
But as soon as I pulled away from the remote gas station alongside the Idaho highway, I began having trouble. This moving truck doesn’t steer like our pickup truck. It doesn’t brake like our pickup truck. It doesn’t shift (or sound) like our pickup truck. The engine protested loudly as I tried to gain speed to get on the highway. Was this thing going to blow up?! It felt like I couldn’t keep it straight between the lines. Just the slightest adjustment of the steering wheel made me feel like I was going to swerve and go careening off the highway.
Panic set in. My voice raised a couple of octaves and I started to sound like Fran Drescher. I loudly demanded to know why the truck sounded like that, why the truck moved like that, what happened if we hurtled off the highway to our fiery deaths?! My husband, after traveling just a couple of miles down the highway with me in charge at the wheel, demanded that I pull off at the next exit. Although I couldn’t see his face (I was much too petrified to pull my eyes from the road), I’m certain there was terror in his eyes. I managed to get the behemoth truck pulled off the road and stopped. My husband quickly jumped out (but luckily refrained from kissing the ground and driving home the humiliation even further) and yanked open the driver’s door, beckoning me to relinquish the position of driver.
I somehow made my way back into the passenger seat without sinking into the earth itself from embarrassment.
I tried holding back tears and failed. We’ve taken countless road trips before and I always did my part as co-driver so my husband could get a break. We still have the rest of tonight and two more full days of driving…how can I just sit here and play navigator? Any smartphone can be a navigator!
As my husband expertly eased the truck back onto the highway, I put my seat back into the semi-reclined position, rivaled only by airline seats. I curled into a ball and closed my eyes and willed myself to fall asleep. Bit the tears of humiliation kept me from slumber.
After a couple of hours passed in silence, my husband skillfully pulled off the highway to get some gas and food. I quietly gathered my dog from the other truck and took her for a walk in the grass. I figured a meager navigator was also delegated the task of bagging dog poop. While watching my dog sniff the 1,001st blade of grass, my husband sauntered up to me.
Without a word, he folded me gently into his arms and held me. I felt the embarrassment and guilt melt away.
Maybe being a navigator isn’t so bad after all…

(knock knock) It’s me…Jane

So here I am. I used to write in a blog but haven’t touched it in over two years. 2012 was a life changing year for me. After struggling with trying to get out of an abusive marriage, I finally decided that my happiness and sanity were more important than worrying what everyone would think of me. I put my big girl panties on and walked away. (Okay it was more like I ran)…

Since then I’ve gone back to school (can one consider it “going back” if they only made it through less than half of a semester when they were 20 years old?) and even though I’ve wavered on my major over the last three semesters, I’ve finally realized that I need to do this for myself. I can’t worry about what other people will think of what I’ve chosen to do. I can’t let the mean voices in my head tell me that everyone will think I’m not smart enough if I want to “just” get a Liberal Arts degree. It will make me happy and that is enough. (Is it weird that I just heard James Cromwell’s voice in my head saying, “That’ll do pig…that’ll do.”)? I promise I’m not crazy…there’s just a lot of internal conversation going on up there. I also just this year married the love of my life, after a 27 year hiatus (called life) from when we dated as teenagers. I’m not going to go into a whole recap of the last two years and how I’ve ended up where I am now. Those who are close to me know. For those who aren’t close to me (hi strangers who are reading my blog!), it will just add an air of mystery. Make up your own story.

I wanted to start writing again but decided not to continue my old blog. It just felt right to start fresh. I read through a lot of stuff on my old blog and it was like watching that dark part of my life happen all over again. I was posting happy thoughts while struggling privately, hoping people wouldn’t find out. Life is so much better now and I think it deserves a new page (both figuratively and literally).

Right now things are a little crazy between full time work, college classes, and a photography workshop I’ve gotten involved in. But what’s one more thing to add to my plate, right? I’d love to be noble and say that I’m going to declare some kind of self-imposed 30 day blogging marathon to hold myself accountable. But who am I kidding? Probably won’t happen. I’ve thought about doing the same thing with photography, trying to post one picture each day. But yeah… I’m hoping to just be able to put my random thoughts down here on a semi-regular basis. Just a warning: I have a lot of random thoughts.

Welcome to my life.