Games, 3-29-24

Games, only games all afternoon so I actually cleaned this morning – don’t faint! – and watched games this afternoon. Sad news about my space age chair. I don’t think it’s going to work – it is advertised as a gaming chair which makes sense. A gamer would be sitting back in the chair holding his controller device and likely has need of the head rest, too. It is so very comfortable, really it is, but I need to lean forward over the sewing machine. Ugh. What kind of chair do YOU use? This chair is recommended for 5-10 hours a day and has great lumbar support. Staples has a 30 day trial so it’s no problem to exchange it for something else but what?

I’m almost finished quilting the March Madness quilt. Does that mean I keep it for another March Madness to bind it?

I hung up this old quilt today. Do you remember this book?

From 1987 by Nancy Martin and Marsha McCloskey. We loved this book so much and I made several quilts in this book – it’s still a favorite. From 1987!!!!

One wonderful reader quilt – double wedding ring.


Remember this artwork from the thrift store? What a great color combination ! I’m going to pull fabrics.

I’m going to advertise for a cleaning lady once a month – is there anyone local who knows someone?

The elusive Gracie

I keep seeing this online and just love it! Squares!

59 thoughts on “Games, 3-29-24

  1. Tanya T. in Houston

    Thinking of you as we watch basketball, too. So sorry about your Iowa State game last night. Enjoying the Clark ads though…good for her!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Tanya – and Iowa State beat Houston earlier in the season by 20+ points!!! What happened to them last night?? They really didn’t deserve to win they played so badly. Ugh.

      1. Diane and the gang in Central Ohio

        The same thing happened when OSU beat Iowa in regular season play, but then fell apart in NCAA. I think they just get worn out mentally and physically. They are still trying to go to and succeed in classes and on the court. Hard to do!

        1. Mary Etherington Post author

          Diane – very hard to do! And some of the teams are still at it – I’ll bet they’ll be glad when it’s over. I am enjoying it but it’s a lot of basketball, isn’t it?

          1. Diane and the gang in central Ohio

            It really is. I was cheering for UCLA so Iowa wouldn’t possibly have to play LSU sometime down the line!! Guess I didn’t cheer loudly enough!😹.
            Poor Buddy is in the basement—too much thunder and lightning. All ok now.

          2. Mary Etherington Post author

            Diane – oh, I was so hoping UCLA would win! Did you watch the interview with Kim Mulkey? Her poor players are being called thugs and worse. Boo hoo.

          3. Diane and the gang

            I did not watch the interview. Too much!! I did read an article about her in the Washington Post. It seemed a fair article to me, but I guess she might sue them over it🙀. I don’t like so much drama!!

  2. Sharon F

    I not only remember that book, I still have it! I haven’t made any of the quilts in it (yet), but still love looking through it.
    Sorry I can’t help with a chair recommendation. Mine is comfortable, but I’ve had it for more than 20 years. Just a regular office chair.
    Beautiful reader quilt, and so nice to catch a glimpse of elusive Gracie.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Sharon F – the Star book is all templates however so measurements need to be determined to cut rotary pieces which is easy for me but some people have trouble.

      1. Sharon F

        I can probably figure out most of the patterns, or just use them for design inspiration. “Someday” 😉

    2. Li

      It seems a bit pricey but I have seen that Arrow Hydraulic sewing chair recommended online and by a friend of mine. I think I would order it with a tweed like woven finish so that I would not slide around in my blue jeans. Jo Kramer order a swivel from Amazaon in Sep 2021 that looked promising. A black leather faux crescent shape on rollers. I have an age old simple swivel chair with no arms that I like because of the rollers and small profile. It belongs to DH but I use it gratefully. I don’t think he ever wants it back.

  3. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ihio

    Mary, I have a Bernina chair that I love, but I think they changed their style after I bought it. I will send a photo. I think they are shorter and more square now. Yesterday we went to a quilt shop, The Quilting Bee, in Lakewood, Ohio, near Cleveland. I discovered it on the all Ohio shop hop. It is a wonderful shop. When I walked in, they asked if I minded dogs! There was Buddy, a beautiful white labradoodle, I think. He was lovely! Of course, I had to show them our Buddy😀. And, our son who lives near there had given me a gift card so I had fun spending and still have some left😀. It is a super friendly, really neat shop! Watching Texas vs Gonzaga women now. Too late to see the whole game. I love all the quilts and kitties. Some if the women at the quilt retreat had bungee like chairs from the Container store. They love them. They are available at other stores, too. 50* here today.

    1. Francine Fagan from Dubuque

      I too have a Bungee Chair from The Container Store without arms and absolutely loveit. I would get it again if something happens to the one I have. Love that it is lightweight too. Check online for it,free shipping I think. I’ve had mine for 4 years and use it everyday.

      1. Tina W in Oregon

        I really like my bungee chair too. The only adjustment on it is for height but it’s very comfortable to me. And it comes in several different colors.

  4. Jo in Wyoming

    I, too, have that book. Stars are my favorite design.
    I sit on an old, I do mean old, operators chair. This stuff was built to last.
    I thought a gaming chair would be perfect. But I guess they are designed for a different user. I have seen chairs designed for longarm quilters. I’m not sure how they would be for sewing at a table.
    Good luck, I’m sure you’ll find something.

  5. Agatha

    I watched so many games also and am very excited for tomorrow when Iowa plays again. My husband had rotary cuff surgery to repair the tear so spend a lot of time taking care of him and the numerous things he can’t do with only one arm.
    Mollie our mini Goldendoodle hang out together in the sewing room together when we get extra time. Love your blog about nothing. And love all the pictures and reply’s.

  6. Peggy Grandberg

    I have 2 old steno chairs which I like for sewing. No arm rest to get in the way and the back is adjustable so you have support when sewing. Do not know if they are still available or not.

  7. Debbie

    It might seem crazy but….using a saddle stool is great. You can get them with or without a back. I used one at work for 30 plus years and found it made a great sewing chair.

  8. Barbara Yarnell

    Wow, Gracie has really grown. Such a pretty girl! Love that last quilt with the pink and light squares. Lately I have been really drawn to quilts made up of all squares. Guess I just need to sit down and make a diagram like Pattii in FL did with hers.

  9. Christine

    I use a Henry Miller Aeron chair from when I worked. It’s the most comfortable chair I’ve ever sat it, but the downside is it’s really expensive. I’m lucky my company gifted it to me when I left. (No gold watch but I got a great chair! 😆)

  10. LaNan Eldridge

    I traded my office chair for sewing to a wobble stool. It’s adjustable height and I can even rock during a quiet time!! I first tried an antique piano stool but it was old and the threaded post had worn so it would slip down. I haven’t had the back issues I had when I used the chair. I think it’s about using your core to balance 🤷‍♀️. Anyway it’s been a game changer for me. One of the quilt retreats I go to almost everyone now uses a wobble stool!!

  11. Cindy K

    I have that book-haven’t looked at it for years-guess I need to give it a browse. I don’t know what the name of the red quilt using squares is but I like it too. I’ve seen similar ones but not that one.

  12. patti

    love the star quilts. always love the old standards. can’t go wrong. i may even have the book still. the colors in your art piece will be gorgeous in a quilt. you haven’t finished pulling fabric yet??? i too keep seeing that quilt of low volume squares with the red/rosy color 9 patch and chains. in fact i’m seeing more and more quilts with just squares. i came across something and started making four patches with 4″ pre-cut squares – don’t have a ton but will use what i have – then cut down to 6.5″. alternate 6.5″ consistent color (maybe a deep green). when i run out of 4″ squares, i’m done. this is not a size i usually cut so am not sure why i have this stack. starting with browns and tossing in blues/greens/tans. know i’ll toss in more later. staying away from the ‘in your face’ colors. the wedding ring quilt looks peaceful to me. the cats look comfy. headed to bed. patti in florida

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Patti – I love squares, don’t you? I can play with the fabric and not worry about placement!

  13. San

    Hi Mary. It’s good to hear that you’re feeling better. I’d check with your chiropractor for a sewing chair recommendation. They probably have some sources.

    Happy Easter to everyone.

    San / Murphy, N.C.

  14. Kathy in western NY

    When I wanted a new chair, I just sat in all the models set up at Office max (when they were in business here) till I found one I could get out of safely and was comfortable. Try doing that at staples. I wouldn’t buy a new mattress till I layed back on it either so take the time and try as many as you see set up.
    Mary, I can tell you what cleaning tool changed my life – a cordless vaccum cleaner. It’s a shark I got at Walmart for around $200 and I can just push it around without that dang cord in my way. My husband will occasionally still use the shark plug in cause he likes that one but I’m afraid of falling over the long cord in my way and it’s lightweight. I trip a lot more easily now. He argued that it only holds a charge for 45 minutes and I told him I never vaccum for more than 20 minutes cause I don’t have the stamina to clean my whole house in a morning now anyways so I break it up into shorter time periods. Next I will look for some wand thing for dusting as a friend who’s 85 and cleans her own place likes hers. Having a cleaning lady come in would make my life easier too but ones around here seem to like going to complexes to do the same apts or do air b and b’s every day so charge an arm and a leg.

    1. Sherry Whalen

      I agree with you about the cordless vacuum! I purchased a cheaper version though, something like $125 – I call it my glorified dust buster. It is small and lightweight but works great on hard wood floors. We still use our whole house vacuum but for quick clean ups in the kitchen and sewing area – it’s great. A week after I got it, I told hubs that if this one quit working anytime – I would buy another immediately!

  15. Linda in MI

    Oh how I love the picture of the two cats! You couldn’t have posed them better. Love the quilts and the colorful picture on the mantel, but give me kitties anyday.

    My husband keeps saying he will pay for a cleaning lady to help me and my back and I am seriously considering it but will three dogs and four cats if I don’t clean every 4 or 5 days it’s terrible, especially in the summer when they drag in so much sand from the pond. It would be great to have someone weekly!! But who can afford that. So what would someone do once a month?

    As far as your chair, everyone leans over their machine so I suppose the best thing is to look for a chair that supports your fanny and lower back. Mine is from Staples and has no padding, you can actually see through the seat, it is tightly woven – most likely plastic webbing, but it evens the pressure of my pelvis so I don’t get the horrible stabbing sharp hip and lower back pain like I do sitting elsewhere.

    I’m praying for your relief, unless you have back problems no one understands how horrible it is!

  16. Mrs. Goodneedle

    Yes, A Dozen Variables has a permanent spot on my bookshelf too, I’ve used that one again and again over the years! We’re Purdue fans here so the basketball mania continues, at least through tomorrow. I have a Horn sewing chair that my husband bought for my birthday twenty years ago. It is fantastic; supportive yet comfortable and adjustable for height. Unfortunately they’ve become ridiculously expensive over the past few years.

  17. Donna Jo

    Bind the March Madness quilt! Don’t save it until next year! Love the two cat photos! I’m sorry the chair isn’t working out. I use the Sew Pad that doesn’t work for you.

  18. Diana in Des Moines

    Sad that the chair didn’t work out. I have my office chair from work. We replaced all the office chairs a few years before I retired. The boss was taking them to Salvation Army and I asked if I could have mine. I sat on it for many years at work, and have loved it just at much at home. No arms is the key for me.
    We have a cleaning lady that comes every 2 weeks. We’ve had her or her mom for many years and when I retired, I said guess that’s the end of that. But hubby said not so fast!! When she comes, I hide in the sewing room and hubby putters outside. Best money I could spend.
    Church last night was the saddest service we attend. Every year I say I’m not going – too emotional, but we always go. We have a new pastor and he delivered!!
    Happy Easter all!

  19. Peg in MO

    I’m very short so I need a tall “chair”. Right now, I’m using an old tall organ bench with lots of padding at my machine. My machine sits on a vintage library table. Works for me but maybe not for others. 😊 Happy Easter weekend!

    1. Peg in MO

      Definitely go for the cleaning help! My husband has dementia & we’re retired. While I could clean, it’s sure a help for me as a 24/7 caregiver & what a boost to come home to a smell good, clean home every 2 weeks!

  20. Patricia Sparks

    I was looking for a chair that I could take to retreats that was light and I could sit in it for hours and still get up. I belong to some quilting groups on Facebook and several people on there said the bungee chair from the container store. It’s been a game changer only 22 pounds so I can handle it and I can power sew all day and half the night. I like the chair so much I bought 4 more to go around my sewing table for when the bee comes over. The chair is on the pricey side so I waited til they had a sale on them. I hope you find a good chair it makes all the difference.

  21. NancyTD

    Finish your quilt and enjoy it now! I probably have the book of Variable Stars too. That is another subject too. How to organize 5 shelves of books so I can find a book without spending hours searching. Anyone have a good system?
    I have a Horn sewing chair. Bought it at a sewing machine place 10 years ago. Love it. When I was trying out my new machine, they have Bernina chairs. They are red too! Sewing chairs have a lot of adjustments. They are expensive, but designed for sewing. Do go try one out.
    Get it about a cleaning lady. I have been doing half a house at a time. Vacuuming is hard on the back.
    I have been dragging my feet about taking a picture of my finish. I have a bonus of a table runner I made on my new machine too.
    Happy Easter to you and Rick!

    1. Diane and the gang

      I tried small labels under each category of books for example: Country Threads; Baby; Teaching; Eleanor Burns; Easy; etc.

  22. JustGail

    I have an Arrow chair with the storage in the seat. It is comfortable overall, but I do forget about the seat storage. I put things in it that I don’t use and then wonder where it put them. I’m tall, so the seat (front to back, not height) seems a bit short on some days but once I’m settled in, it’s good. The big downfall – the pneumatic(?) lift lets me down. Literally. It usually happens when I first sit down, once I get it raised back up, it normally holds the rest of the sewing session. I’m not sure what I’ll get next if the lift totally gives up the ghost.

  23. Dee from Missouri

    I have a Horn i bought when I bought my Horn sewing table. My retirement gift to me 10 yrs ago. Very comfy. Different adjustments/heights. I sit sort if hunched over machine too.

  24. Alice in SW Ohio

    I’m #1900 to read the book on my tablet, but that’s okay, I have other books to read in the meantime! My sewing chair is at least 20 yrs old & I bought it at Walmart! I wanted something without arms. It’s still comfortable after all these years! The two chairs my husband had in his office at home were expensive & comfortable, but were too big for my sewing area. My sewing machine sits flush in a large Horn sewing table. That was the best investment ever!

  25. Kim from Wi

    I loved reading all the ideas for a new chair. When we moved I got rid of my sewing chair with the idea I would get something better at the new place. This blog about nothing has given me some good ideas. Right now I sit on a chair from Ikea, it has no arms but nice wheels and I take it on retreat, it was $24 shipped to my house. I will look into the Bungee chair and ones at the quilt shops. Happy Easter everyone.

  26. Sunflower 🌻 from Michigan

    Lovely post! Those two cats and Gracie are beautiful! The quilt behind the two cats looks interesting. Any way the owner could show a photo of that?
    I like the square quilt also. Watching the LSU game now and preparing for Iowa’s game next.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Sunflower – it’s a panel very similar to the one you sent. Hate watching LSU!

  27. Betty Klosterman

    It’s Saturday and it is snowing right now. The temp is above freezing and the snow is melting as it hits the ground. I was outside for a bit and the snow felt great hitting my face. So fresh and smells so good. I’m not sure what is supposed to happen, but we’ll know when it hits?? Tomorrow the neighbors are going to hide Easter eggs in my yard for their grand kids to hunt. The weather probably won’t matter to the kids. Should be fun to watch?

    With all the new stuff, I have no idea what a bungee chair, etc is. My old office chair was a dream and had my permanent bun dents. I sat in it til it gave up the ghost. Because you are doing the same things in your office chair as you would do at a sewing machine, I would go where office furniture is sold. I would look for: no arms, everything adjustable, including raising and lowering the height and wheels. And sit on it. I went to an office supply that sold both new and used stuff. An office chair is meant to live in!!!!! I found a used chair and really like it.

    In the meantime, I found a piece of giraffe fabric, a warm brown fabric and a light to make a 3-yard quilt. And the name on the dark fabric is WEAR WARM CLOTHES!!!!! Sound familiar?

    Take care everybody. Have a nice Easter. Betty in Rapid City

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Betty – Wear Warm Clothes fabric is still around? Wow!!!! No snow here and I don’t think it will rain tomorrow on Easter – my dad always said if it did we’d have 6 more Sundays with rain. I think he said six. Easter egg hunt at church and many times it rains.

  28. Judy

    I simply use one of the folding chairs to our card table. I guess through the years I have shrunk because now I always use a cushion and folded blanket to make myself higher. I husband got a new desk chair. I tried his old one at my machine. The arms were always getting in the way.

  29. Betty Klosterman

    Cleaning ladies are worth their weight in gold!!!

    Betty in Rapid City

  30. RuthW in MD

    Mary, check the back of your receipt from Staples today!! I bought an office chair from there for use at my computer. Thought I had a month to return it, but at 3 weeks I made the “final” decision, No, tried to return it, and they told me the return window was TWO weeks, per the back of the receipt. So I’m still sitting in it. But it isn’t too bad, and I really don’t spend hours at my computer, so I’m good. I hope you find something you do like to sit in.

  31. Li

    What a blast from the past. I made that Dozen Variables quilt and called it Chocolate/Vanilla. It was at a time I could eat a lot of pistachio ice cream. I would buy a quart of half coffee, half pistachio almond from Baskin Robbins. My vote is another March Madness to bind it. (Apologies for reposting but I was on the wrong date.)

  32. Gayle Shumaker

    Mary I use a gaming chair from Staples and love it. I’ve now had4 spinal surgeries and all but 7 thoracic vertebrae are fused and caged. I’m 5’5″ and though I do scoot forward I work at using better body mechanics. Pain has taught me to work smarter otherwise I can’t keep quilting. Good luck

  33. Lisa B

    I use an office style secretary chair at my machine. I can adjust the height if needed. It swivels for easily removing myself from the area. It has arms that I like to give my shoulders a break/support when machine quilting. Or just taking a break because something on tv has caught my eye. It tool me a while to find one that fit my sewing style.

  34. Beryl BC

    Many of the quilters I know use the bungee chair. I don’t, I use an old soda fountain chair with a cushion from the farm store. Probably not recommended but it works. I take a black deer stand cushion to retreats. It’s a great cushion.
    I was happy to see Iowa win this afternoon. After last year, I’m a little anxious about their next game.
    It was 70 today in SW Ohio this afternoon and very windy.

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