Thursday, April 19, 2012

Warm Weather Headgear Rant.

Now for my yearly hot weather rant where I complain pathetically about trying to train for a marathon (or half marathon this year!!) while living in the desert. Here I go...

I have gone the gambit here in Phoenix looking for an indoor track. Found one (yeah, ONE) at Scottsdale Community College and it had a great indoor climate, plenty to look at, safe flooring, affordable price, kind of far away, but it was so tiny!!! I took like 18 (or something equally painful) laps for a single mile which wouldn't be so bad except for the fact that it completely KILLED my 31 year old knees. So the indoor track idea has died and I am still pretty sad about it.

I guess Phoenicians don't like running. Either that or we really, really like the sun and heatstroke. I don't mind the sun as long as I don't get a sunburn (or any sun on my face) or heatstroke. Seriously, my insurance is not what it used to be. I cannot afford to hurt myself OR get heatstroke.

The problem that I am choosing to tackle in 2012 will be a much smaller scale than finding the elusive indoor track in the desert oasis of Phoenix. I just want to find a light-weight, reflective, awesome-so-no-one-will-look-twice-or-even-think-of-laughing-at-me, sombrero visor. Yes, I just typed that and yes, it is exactly what I want, big time.

Please allow me to explain.

1.) Light-weight: you do not want to run with too much weight, that is how one gets hurt. Besides, lighter = less work, I like that.

2.) Reflective: yo, Phoenix is a desert, we need to reflect as much of that sun as we can so there is no overheating and in turn no heat stroke. Yes, everything will always point back to ultimately avoiding heatstroke (a major fear of mine, next to drowning).
3.) Awesome (blah blah blah): well who likes to run like a dork? Answer: no one. I, too wanna look like I rule whilst I plug along in my run. I mean is a nice tweed or herringbone pattern in a moisture-wicking fabric and an understated brown or gray pattern too much to ask for?

4.) Sombrero: I figure that with coverage in all four quadrants like a sombrero is capable of providing, I am less likely to get any more dang age spots on my cheeks. Visors & stupid ball caps provide no side coverage and I am worried that I'll start looking like a saddle bag any day now.

5.) Visor: uh yeah. Hats hold in way too much heat for my liking. No matter what. Seriously, even with those meshy air vent things. Maybe my head is weirdly shaped, they just don't work for me. and I overheat immediately.

What about wearing a normal visor and just load up on the old water-proof sunscreen, you say? Oh Lordy, if you ever saw me run and the hot sweaty mess I turn into, you would know that sunscreen sits on my skin for the first 45 minutes that I let it soak in before I head out the door, and that is it. Then it's in my eyes, under my sunglasses (which subsequently fall off my nose for the remainder of the run), and in my mouth. Epic failure each time. I do use this Nutrogena product though and it has worked the best for me. Plus I like the spray.

Thank-you for listening to me rant. I have no idea what I am going to do...but I'll have to figure it out soon as I will no longer have a home for my treadmill (fingers crossed we can start our renovation soon, hearing set for May 5). I'll just have to listen to my body and figure it out. I have a feeling it will involve my weight in water.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

April Update

Our 1976 Tarva on Saguaro Lake yesterday
Looks like my updates have been monthly for the past few months. Sorry! We have been busy in this house traveling to Florida to visit in-laws, sewing bee blocks, avoiding other bee projects, historical preservation plans, visits to the vet (and obnoxious lab tests), and working on my Bento Box Swap Quilt.

I have been a busy little bee this past month between bee blocks in my ABL and 3x6 groups! I have neglected my Empower dGS project.... I really, really need to finish up that quilt top, sandwich her up, quilter, and then I think I am going to attempt machine binding..... I have always been afraid of the less-than-stellar results that I am likely to have by losing stitches on the back side while stitching in the ditch on the front. (does that even make sense? I'll explain here in a minute).

ABL mosaic block for Mary
Always Bee Learning March Mosaic for Mary using Tula Pink!

dGS march triangle bee blocks for Ronit
do Good Stitches - Triangle in Triangle for Ronit

Winged Square 3x6 Bee Blocks
Fish Head to a Rumble 3x6 Bee Blocks (4/6) Hubby thinks they look like rival fish gangs squaring off.

3x6 Bee block (mine) Quarter 1
MY 3x6 block for myself in the husband's colors (to match his 1976 Tarva jet boat)
I hope the girls in my hive for the 3x6 like the colors/pattern that I have chosen!! I am overly nervous about this as it is my very first round with them and we are still feeling each other out as far as likes and dislikes.

Wonky Bento Box Swap update
Here's the progress that I am making on my Bento Boxes from the Flickr swap that I was in. I absolutely love this group!! This round was also the best yet! I am only wondering if I would like more overhang (for a queen sized bed) in which case should I make more blocks and make it border-less OR should I make a border (? undetermined how that would need to look as I am loving this scrappiness!). I am really anxious to get this sent off to be quilted. I think something fun like feathers would be cool, I mean c'mon, there's already A LOT going on in this quilt, it would be difficult to tone it down. I honestly am not sure it is even possible.

Rita - Red Pepper Quilts has perfect bindings. Love them!

As I was saying earlier about machine binding and how flawless it can look (and once I have laid eyes upon this perfection, I just cannot accept anything less. le sigh.)... I have always sewed on the front side of the binding of all my quilts by machine and then hand sew the back of the binding to the back side of the quilt. Sure, I like it, it is fun to sit down with the finished project and enjoy it one last time, and it is nice to have a mindless activity, but it sure would be nice to have the durability of machine-sewn binding on both sides. I have always been too afraid that my binding will not be equivalent on both sides of the quilt and then when I stitch in the ditch from the front that stitches may weave on and off of the binding on the backside which in  turn will likely absolutely enfuriate me that I will have to pick out my work or it will look grody.... See my conundrum, I would rather hand sew than pick ANYthing out. I hate picking things out. BUT I found this really great tutorial recommended by Christina of the Sometimes Crafter via Instagram right here: Quick and Easy Quilt Binding Tutorial which uses Wash Away Wonder Under Tape. I think that I need a roll of this stuff pronto. I think that using this can give me the confidence that I will need to even attempt this feat, which I am bound (no pun) and determined to use after I figure out what to do with my do Good Stitches quilt. Oh look.... You can buy it here: Joann's. Lucky me!!

From Modern Domestic
Modern Domestic (cutest binding ever, BTW)
And now that all of that has been shown off, I would like to announce that I am an aunt (again) and everyone is happy and healthy!!! My newest little nephew is the apple of anyone who meets him's eyes. Seriously, he is the cutest little baby. I would post a picture, but he really is not my baby to be posting all about on the interwebs so I will have to that up to his proud mommy and daddy.

I am nursing a head cold/sinus thing/flu? I don't know what it is, but it involves a stuffed up head, lots of nasal secretions (thank-you for the over-share, right?), and the possibility of aspirating every single night when I am trying to fall asleep, it truly is uncomfortable. I am hoping to get better soon so that I can start running again. I am beginning to miss it now that I have had a luxurious 6 months (almost) off!