My youngest older sister retired from her job earlier this year, sold her house and dragged her husband into one of those over-55 communities. I have to say it seems to be working for her. She used to be pretty crabby a lot of the time and stressed out from working so much. This new place has a pool, tennis courts, clubhouse, bike paths, etc. and while it's not in Arizona, she's having a great time and especially enjoyed watching the house being built and picking out all new appliances and those things that make it unique. She joined the Garden Club, the Early Morning Walkers Club, takes an Aquatic Fitness class, shops a lot and is totally enjoying retirement to the fullest (even though I have not been able to convince her to take up QUILTING, can you believe it? I think she'd rather I just make her the quilts myself and save her the time.)
Last week she told me she joined the Red Hat Society, God bless her. If you knew my sister, you would find this really amusing. She is typically very shy and introverted, even more than I am. Large social gatherings were never really her thing. So I thought. But, WOW, the RED HAT SOCIETY?? I hear those ladies are pretty flamboyant. Will a feather boa be on her Christmas wish list??
When I need a break from quilting I enjoy making simple jewelry and have made oodles of earrings, necklaces and bracelets for all of my sisters and friends (Actually, anyone who walks in the door usually gets a bunch of earrings to take home. That's how crazy I am sometimes about this jewelry making. If you happen to be wearing blue, have I got a pair of matching earrings for you!)
Last Christmas I gave Ingrid and Linda 7 pairs of earrings each--one for every day of the week, all labeled, you know, just like the days of the week underpants we all had when we were kids?? (Or was I the only one?) So, when my sister asked me to make her a pair of red and purple earrings for her RED HAT meetings, I went all out and made six pairs of colorful, flashy earrings and told her to pass them out to some of the ladies. I'm thinking that this will intrigue them enough to want to know what else I do in my spare time and then maybe I can eventually convert them all to quilters sooner or later . . . .
I love playing with colorful beads almost as much as I love playing with fabric. Back in my "pop bead" days (2nd or 3rd grade. Remember those?), I had quite a bead collection, thanks to some pretty decent trades at recess, and I guess I never gave it up. My bead collection now is almost as bad as my fabric collection. I mean, almost AS GOOD. So, when my head starts to spin and my back and shoulders ache and I need a break from quilting, I make jewelry. Simple, scrappy, beaded jewelry. What do YOU like to make when you're not quilting?
I'm a quilt designer and author of four quilting books for Martingale & Co. I love making small quilts with an antique look and find inspiration in quilts from the past and the women who made them. Follow me on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/KathleenTracyQuilts.
See more of my quilts, books and patterns at http://www.countrylanequilts.com/
If you're using one of my patterns on your blog or as a challenge for your group or guild - either the free ones from my website or my yahoo group or perhaps from one of my books - please make sure you give me credit for writing the pattern and drawing up the design and ask permission before you reproduce or distribute it. Thanks!