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Outside the Block, Part 2

Just in case you thought that all I did was spend time in my sewing room, I thought I would let you know about a few other things that I have been up to so far this year. The first major project is still on going but we have made major strides on remodeling our guest bathroom. Since our daughters have all moved out it was time to update the bathroom and give it a more adult look. My first job was to repaint. I

chose a dark grey paint that matched a cool shower curtain that I purchased at Bed, Bath and Beyond. It is actually the same one that my parents have in the guest bathroom at their new house. The colors are taupe, teal, and grey and just exactly what I wanted. Then we went to Consolidated Kitchens in Lincoln to find a new counter top. I debated for a little bit but ended up with a quartz counter top that features teal, black, white, and taupe. Of course, with any remodel one thing leads to another. We then replaced the hardware on the cabinet with chrome to match the other fixtures in the bathroom. I made a new quilt to hang on the wall opposite the mirror. We hung old pictures of my grandparents on the wall next to the mirror. I found several accessories around our house that matched the colors to set on the counter and shelves. I bought a new soap dispenser and tissue holder for the counter. Now we are waiting to replace the carpet and linoleum with ceramic tile. Then it will be on to the next remodeling project.

I have also read several good books. The first was Hellhound on His Trail By Hampton Sides. It is the story of the killing of Martin Luther King and subsequent arrest of James Earl Ray. Since we had just been in Memphis in September the story was very meaningful and filled in a lot of details. I also read another Fredrik Backman book, Britt-Marie Was Here. It was a delightful read that focused on a character from another Backman book, My Grandmother Told Me To Tell You She’s Sorry. Britt-Marie is an interesting lady who finally comes into her own after suffering the loss of her sister during their childhood and then suffers through a marriage with a controlling husband. I am now reading Peace Like A River by Lief Enger, the story of an asthmatic little boy who has witnessed several miracles and travels with his family in search of his brother who has escaped from prison after being arrested for murder. I love the way this writer writes! He describes the events in such an interesting way and I often find myself either chuckling or rereading a passage just to enjoy the words.

In March we traveled to Phoenix for the Kansas City Royals Spring Training. We went to four games and saw the Royals play the Cubs, Dodgers, Rangers and A’s. It was fun to see the facilities and the up-and-coming Royals players. I also had a chance to see some of the old timers that I remember watching when I first started following the Royals back in the ‘70’s. We also ate at some fabulous restaurants - the most notable was Rustler’s Roost which had tremendous views of the city as well as great views. The only downer of the trip was the traffic. We are just not accustomed to that type of travel in our no-stoplight town! But we did enjoy the warmer weather and the constant sunshine.

I spent the first Saturday in April at a Midwest Machine Quilter’s workshop featuring Karen Miller of Redbird Quilts. I always enjoy those sessions - one in the spring and one in the fall- as they focus totally on machine quilting. Karen primarily quilts on a domestic machine but has recently acquired a long arm. It was amazing to see the things that she does. I got a lot of ideas and inspiration from her presentation. Now I just need an opportunity to give them a try!

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