Saturday, January 07, 2006

No Pain, No Gain

I'm still working on my signature blocks for the fundraiser quilt. I have 9 blocks completely finished, and the other 8 have been put on their backgrounds and stitched around the perimeter. These blocks are killing me! About 12 years ago, I slipped and fell flat on my back on a concrete floor. I knocked 3 rib heads out of joint (which were put back in place by a chiropractor), but my back has never been the same. When I use my right arm in a reaching position (like rotary cutting, mousing on the computer, longarming, etc.), I get a huge knot on my scapula (I affectionately call it my chicken wing) on my right side. Well, stitching the inner cutouts on these blocks requires me to constantly raise the presser foot stitch by stitch in order to make the stitching uniform on the tight inner curves. This stretching of my right arm for a prolonged period of time has caused the knot on my back to become huge. I broke down and bought some icy hot patches, and have put one on my back for two nights in a row now. They do help, somewhat. The fun part is trying to get it off by myself each morning. A good bit of contortion is involved. I may have to finish the blocks a little bit at a time, instead of working intently on them for hours at a stretch. This will also help with the boredom factor, too.

Last night I just couldn't do any more - I wanted to do some real sewing! I dug in one of my drawers and cut a 2-1/2" strip off of 6 fabrics and made a Scrappy Trip Around The World block from Bonnie's site. This block was so fun and took about 20 minutes. Now, I have no business starting something new - but I don't consider this another project started. I just wanted to play for a few minutes and try a new technique as a diversion. I will tuck this block away, and maybe make another when I have a few minutes and need a break from the task at hand. Since my stash is woefully lacking "lights", this is a good scrap quilt for me since it doesn't require a background.

I am going on retreat next weekend, and I need to spend the rest of my sewing time getting ready. I learned a long time ago that I NEVER cut out a project at retreat. There's so much chaos in a big group that it's too easy to make cutting mistakes. Sub-cutting is possible, but not cutting from scratch. I intend to spend the most of my time there making a shop sample, and those fabrics haven't even been cut off the bolt yet.

My staff holiday party is tonight (I also learned a long time ago that having a holiday party during the holidays just wasn't possible). I'll bring a honeybaked ham and every one else will bring a side dish. We do a gift exchange that always turns into a fun fight. Audrey and Russ have promised me that they will also make a corn casserole (a monkey could do it), but I have a feeling I will be walking them through it over the phone. We'll see.

Have a great weekend!



Anonymous JNTryson said...

Hi Susan--I would love to have your corn casserole recipe. You know where to find me. :-)

And have you ever tried mousing with your "other" hand? I've been doing it for years to save my wrist (I'm right-handed, mouse with my left. We have two mouses/mice? attached so the kids can still mouse right-handed). It might help your back, a little.

8:42 AM  

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