Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Afternoon at the machine

This is the story of how I got to sew almost all of yesterday afternoon instead of working without even one little shred of guilt. It's a hilarious tale, really.

I have given blood for years. Three times a year, show up and save a life while sitting on my butt. I have never had one single problem, except for the time I let a newbie practice on me and ended up with a huge bruise. So, it was time to donate again and I went to the Blood Center for my appointment.  I usually have a quick lunch, then go donate, then go back to the office and work the rest of the afternoon. I give double red cells, so it takes a little longer, but with an 11:45 or 12 o'clock appointment I can usually be back by 1:30. Except for this time!

I got to the Blood Center, did the whole routine, got the needle in my arm, read my book, and got all finished and ready for my cookie.  So I stood up, stretched, and boom! Passed clean out on the floor. Did I mention that I never had any problem EVER before?

Turns out that this happens every day at the Blood Center. Literally. Every day. They were all very nice. What happens is they break open some ammonia under your nose so you wake up (I was really only completely out of it for about 10 seconds, but they got the ammonia anyway), then they sit you up against the wall while pretty much forcing you to slam down a whole bottle of water. Then you get to sit in the cookie area and have a cookie and another whole bottle of water or juice while they call your emergency contact to drive you home. Because no one is letting you drive after that.

It was all very embarrassing.

So, my husband came and scooped me up and took me home and left me there with strict instructions not to do anything "strenuous." (He even brought home takeout later. Best husband ever. Plus I now get to define cooking as "too strenuous.")

So what's a girl to do with a free afternoon? Pop in a movie and sit at the sewing machine, that's what! I finished up the Afternoon on the Porch top, which took longer than expected. I realized while I was rearranging everything that it was going to finish at about 48 by 70. This is pretty narrow, so I decided to make 4 more blocks (one more row) to widen it to 56 inches. Only problem was that I had not a single thread left of the the original fabrics. So I picked out some coordinating ones and then had to strip them into random blocks so that the new fabrics didn't stand out from the old ones.


That meant lots of ripping and restitching, plus making new blocks from the pieces I ripped out of the original blocks, but it turned out okay. Not hard, just putzy.

I took the top outside in the brief respite between raindrops in hopes of getting a good picture, but everything was really too wet to put the top on. My neighbor came to the rescue, though, and held the top up for me.

It was very windy! And you can see that we have no leaves on the trees yet. But how great is that top? I think it turned out fantastic. It's going to be a nice cuddle quilt, probably for my older daughter, who gave me the fabric to begin with. And it certainly added a bright spot to a fairly dreary week.

This top will go to the longarmer. I know exactly which panto to use on it, and she does terrific work. This batik is the backing:


It's mostly blues, but with big areas of purple and a pinkish color. It's perfect for a backing where all those colors and variations can be seen.

One more thing to show today:


That is a stack of 16 birthday girl blocks (which I keep calling 'birthday cake' blocks in my head) for the Celtic Solstice quilt. Only 8 more to make! Progress, progress. After I finished with these I had a big headache, probably from my earlier adventure, so that was it for sewing time for the day. But I got a lot done! Not bad for a surprise free afternoon.

I hope my story above doesn't put off anyone who's thinking of donating blood! This is the only time in close to 20 years that anything has happened when I donated, so don't be afraid! Everyone is very, very nice, and you get to save someone's life AND get free cookies on top of it. Win, win, win.

Hope everyone has a great afternoon, and has some bonus free time very soon. Just don't pass out to get it, okay?


1 comment:

  1. Oh my goodness! I've never had that happen when I gave blood and I'm due to give again next week. I wonder what the trouble was? Glad you didn't hit your head or anything more serious and you got spend the afternoon in the best way possible IMHO.

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