Moving Across the Country During a National Pandemic

Our kids were both living their best lives in the west, our parents had passed, and we (okay, I) kept asking ourselves (myself) why we were still in the Midwest. My husband is more the Grow Roots model and I am the odd one who enjoys change. I was ready to move west when my daughter told us she was pregnant, 5 years ago. Finally, after one particularly poignant experience in early August, Hubs decided he was ready to make the big move.

We pulled out a calendar and made a plan. We had lived in our current home for 32 years, so this was not going to be any easy task. We gave ourselves 3 months to purge our worldly belongings, pack a rented 16′ POD, our own 16′ box trailer, both cars, and our Airstream. We thought we would get our house on the market, head west, and live in our Airstream until our house sold, then begin the serious search for our new digs.

Oh, the purging…the decisions…the photos…the memories…the furnishings…last visits with friends…placing ads, Goodwill trips, give aways…all during a national pandemic. I sold my longarm, as well. Since we were moving ourselves, I was not too comfortable moving it such a long distance and we didn’t really have room for it, either. I would buy a new one, once we got settled in our new place. We have several friends who have sold or given away everything to live full time in their RV. I could never quite grasp the giving possessions away, but now I fully understand. I got to the point where I just wanted someone to take all the stuff away, because that’s all most of it is – just stuff. It feels so freeing to only have the important things with us and to know we have not left that for our kids to do.

A little levity among the work of purging.

One thing, then another, and another, and before the end of the three months of purging, we were under contract for our current home and had an offer accepted on a house in the state of Washington sight unseen. I can explain. Not really. It’s totally crazy! We hit the road in our Airstream before the end of the three months headed for a friend’s backyard in Oregon to live until both homes closed.

Leaving our IN home of 32 years to our new home in WA.

We stopped for a few days at our son’s home in Colorado. It was a nice respite after a rapid fire 3 months. We just needed to chill and it was the perfect place to do so.

Boulder driveway parking

But onward to Oregon and the 7 acre backyard to be our home for a month until our new home closed. It was the perfect, peaceful place.

Mooch docking on 7 acres at a friend’s house in OR

Fortunately, our daughter and SIL had been able to attend the home inspection for us and gave us the green light. Hubs flew back to the Midwest (during a notional pandemic, remember) to drive our car and 16′ box trailer, the last of our possessions, westward.

The first week of December we were moving in and making a new house our home. The Pandemic provided us a big block of uninterrupted time to settle in, even though we were anxious to meet our new neighbors. The sum total of furniture we brought with us consisted of 2 chairs, 4 tv trays, 2 lamps, a queen mattress, and a refrigerator. We purchased the master BR suite, a wardrobe, a day bed, and a foosball table from the previous owners. Any additional furnishings were purchased through Costco online delivery or Amazon, because we were not comfortable shopping during the Pandemic. Having said that, we did buy our dining room furniture from individuals online because it was exactly what I wanted.

So now we are living our best lives in the west and it is SO nice to be closer to family and watching our youngest grandson grow up.

A Scarlet Thread

1601 McDonough Pl

McDonough, GA

678-583-2296

Nov 2 – 6

I will be teaching Getting Started with Longarm Quilting, Free Motion Quilting, Can’t Have Enough Rulers!, and Introduction to Pro-Stitcher. Please contact A Scarlet Thread to register. Hope to meet you there!

Moore’s Sewing

2315 E Imperial Hwy

Brea, CA 92821

714-279-6830

October 6 – 9

I will be teaching Getting Started with Longarm Quilting, Free Motion Quilting, Can’t Have Enough Rulers!, and Intro to Pro-Stitcher. Please contact Moore’s Sewing to register. Hope to meet you there!

Quality Sew and Vac

1203 Andover Park West

Tukwila, WA

October 1 and 2, 2021

I’ll be teaching Getting Started with Longarm Quilting, Can’t Have Enough Rulers!, and Design Your Quilting for the Whole Quilt. Please call Quality Sew and Vac to register.

Quality Sew and Vac

1201 SE Everett Mall Way

Everett, WA

425-290-8000

1-800-687-5175

September 28, 29, 30

I’ll be teaching Getting Started with Longarm Quilting, Can’t Have Enough Rulers!, Design Your Quilting for the Whole Quilt, on the 28th and 29th and Pro-Stitcher Demo and Class on September 30. Please contact Quality Sew and Vac to register.

The Quilt Barn

2102 East Main Ave

Puyallup, WA

253-845-1532

September 8-11, 2021

I will be teaching Getting Started with Longarm Quilting, Free Motion Quilting, Can’t Have Enough Rulers!, and Introduction to Pro-Stitcher. Please contact The Quilt Barn to register for one or all of these classes. Hope to meet you there!

TWIST

This Week in Studio Time –

Six fat quarters and you can have a quick baby quilt using the Yellow Brick Road quilt pattern. I added a border. I love the way this goes together. If you have a friend who is learning to quilt, this is a fantastic pattern for them, and it is so fun to put together that even experienced quilters will enjoy piecing this one! I come back to it again and again.

This week I also recovered a couple outdoor cushions. I’m happy with how they turned out.

I also made two of these quilt backing extenders. They are helpful when you are short on backing fabric so the machine carriage doesn’t run into the clamps. I took 2 fat quarters (one for each side), finished the long edges, and then folded it in half, right sides together, and stitched the end opposite the fold with a 1/4′ seam, and turned it right side out. Then I inserted a clean paint stick at the folded edge and marked the sides and the bottom of the paint stick. I stitched across the width and one side, inserted the paint stick, then stitched the other side to hold the paint stick in place. To use it, pin the end with the 1/4′ seam to your backing fabric, and use your clamps on the paint stick to stabilize your backing.

Labrynth Walk Quilt

This has been on my list for quite awhile and I’m so happy I moved it to the top of my list. This was gifted to my grandson for his high school graduation. I was trying to think of a more masculine pattern to suggest to him. He liked the pattern and chose the colors. It went together so much easier than I thought. I hadn’t noticed that it’s really just two different blocks! If you’ve been considering making this one, I would encourage you to do so. I quilted this on my Handi Quilter Infinity using a design from Wasatch Quilting.

Handi Quilter Educator Challenge – Do You See What I See?

The Handi Quilter Educator Challenge for 2020 was to quilt a Debra Linker ice dyed piece of fabric to emphasize the faces or figures you see in the fabric. This is called pareidolia, but we decided to call it simply, Do You See What I See?

This is the piece that I chose from the options. I didn’t “see” anything at the time, but liked the colors.
After gazing at it for awhile, the green areas became green jackets and I took it from there. I used Handi Quilter Preview Paper and dry erase markers to sketch out some ideas. Easy to wipe off and start over til I liked what I saw.
This is how I began. You can see I changed my mind on the center area once I began. At this point, I had decided the green jackets would be on aliens and this center point was going to be their regeneration point. There you go, the name of my piece was Regeneration Station!
Here’s my finished piece. The aliens are coming in to renew their energy. The design on their jackets match the grid in the center and indicates their energy level. The closer the grid in their jackets, the more energy they have. Some are coming in to energize and others are on their way out, having just finished energizing. Swarovski crystals for the eyes. I left the background unquilted as I thought it made them seem as thought they were floating in nothingness in outer space. Crazy, I know, but I think I was writing a novel about these guys while I was quilting them.