Hummingbird #44

Block #44 for Jeanie M.

Block #44 for Jeanie M.

This bird goes to another one of those long lost friends, Jeanie M. I have Jeanie M. to thank for my entire career path. When we moved down here I was still in college. I changed my major because I was certain I wanted the glamorous life of a pharmacist. After a couple semesters I left my campus job paying 7 bucks an hour and traded it for 5.25 an hour just so I could get some hands on experience in a pharmacy. Yeah… I wasn’t too bright.

The pharmacy was awful. Sick people are mean. Within two weeks I was begging them to let me go back to being a cashier up front. I did meet some great people there. One of them was my manager Jeanie M.  She would often let me learn her duties and help out when she was on break. I remember thinking “I can do that”. So I switched majors and went to business school. In my first semester I took a programming course  and that was all she wrote. I had found my future career and it didn’t involve being a store manager at a pharmacy. So in retrospect, I seriously owe her. Because, as I mentioned before, sick people are mean.

I also owe my current friends to Jeanie, which is ironic because Jeanie and I no longer even know each other. Jeanie invited me to go to church with her one Sunday and a few years later we joined Kristen’s home team at church. 10 years later, I can’t imagine not having these people in my life. I owe my friends, and now neighbors, to Jeanie.

Quick Funny Story

When Jeanie was pregnant with her son, her husband became very ill with pancreatitis. He was in the hospital recovering but she didn’t want to miss lamaze class and needed a partner. It was awkward and I wasn’t ready for the video…

Date Made: February 13th, 2015  
Block #44
Days on Project: 44
Blocks Made: 47

For Jeanie M.

Hummingbird #43

Block #43 For Kristi S.

Block #43 For Kristi S.

Why Am I Doing This?

I am starting to get questions about the birds. People at work ask me how long they take to make and say things like “you mean you HAVE to make one a day all year??” as if it is a homework assignment that I am being graded on. Obviously, this is my choice and its not always easy. So I thought I would take a few minutes tonight to elaborate on why I am doing this.

About a year ago I stumbled across the blog “A Thousand Quilted Cranes”. The writer of this blog was inspired by Margaret Rolfe’s peace quilt and dedicating each crane to a person that as affected his life either negatively or positively.

Immediately I wanted to do it too, mostly because the crane was an amazing pattern and I thought the idea was cool. At the time, it was only a cool idea. I never started the project; I just didn’t have enough passion for it. Then this year at quilt festival I was in a class and recognized someone from a previous festival class. I noticed she was always working during class so I asked where she worked. She worked at a BIG company and I know someone at that company, Daniel, so I mentioned him. Turns out, they were buddies and I thought “small world”. During our conversation, I mentioned that I really hadn’t seen him in several years; that we used to work together but we had both moved on. She made a comment that really stuck with me, it was something about friends flying in and out of your life, I can’t remember the phrase exactly, it was something about “seasons” maybe.

While Daniel and I were friends and he is awesome, we were never “tight”. But, it still got me thinking about all of the people I was once very close to and how I don’t even know most of them anymore. Some of them I miss and think about often. All of them have shaped me in some way. That is how I found the passion for this project. I wanted to bring back the memories of those those long lost friends and honor the current ones as well. Tonight’s block is dedicated to one of those.

A Short Story

I met Kristi S. when I moved to “The Big City”. She was a friend of my husbands friend. She was my very first friend down here. She was going to the same college as me and we started out as carpool buddies. It was nice to have company and help navigating freeways. My husband worked offshore and she was single so we became friends and hung out together all the time. She even went home with me once at Thanksgiving and slept through one of those crazy earthquakes. She was my lifeline here, and I can’t believe that I have no clue where she is now. How can you be in someone’s wedding and then 15 years later, you don’t even know how to get ahold of them.

Are people really only in our lives for a season? Is there some sort of limit to how many close friends you can manage at one time, and socially, the herd gets thinned as it needs to? I have no clue.

Date Made: February 12th, 2015  
Block #43
Days on Project: 43
Blocks Made: 46

For Kristi S.

Hummingbird #42

Block #42 For Doris S

Block #42 For Doris S

Tonight’s block is dedicated to Angela’s mom Doris. Doris was a second mom to me growing up. We were neighbors, but honestly we were family. One of my earliest memories was of her youngest son being born. I remember we were in grade school and I found out on the playground. I think mom and dad picked up Angela and her sister and they stayed with us until they could go up to the hospital (but that part is a bit fuzzy). But it’s the emotion I remember the best; the joy and excitement of a new baby! I think I was in 3rd grade…maybe.

A Short Story

We have already established that I ate at Doris’s house often (see last night’s post). As I got older, I often hung out with Doris even if the kids weren’t home. I remember one day we had an earthquake while I was over there. It wasn’t a major earthquake, but we didn’t have them that often so when we did, it was cool. The house started shaking and Doris yelled “Paula Sue, get under the table”. The oven door popped open and scared the crap out of me (not literally). But that was OK, because I was safe under the table. Doris, however, never got up out of  her chair. I remember thinking “Why in the world didn’t she take cover?? She could have been hurt!!”.

After the earthquake we went outside, I am pretty sure I ran outside, to see if the neighbors felt it. Our neighbors were sitting in lawn chairs in their front yard the whole time and they didn’t feel a thing. The big scary earthquake that caused the oven door to pop open wasn’t even strong enough to be felt unless you were inside of something, like a house, to notice the shaking. So I guess she was justified staying comfortable while I was crouched on the floor under a table.

Date Made: February 11th, 2015  
Block #42
Days on Project: 42
Blocks Made: 45

For Doris

Hummingbird #41

Block #41 For Angela

Block #41 For Angela

I am sure that if someone with an advanced degree in some sort of behavioral science is reading this blog with any regularity, they would tell you that I am an only child. Angela and her siblings were the closest thing I had to sisters and brothers growing up. We rode our bikes together down to the corner store for candy, we were in the same car pool, we got grounded together, we played together. When we played school, which was all the time, Angela always had to be the teacher. In fact, I am pretty sure if we still lived in the same town she would still be bossing me around. 🙂

I miss Angela terribly. I would love to sit on my porch and gab with her over a cup of coffee but we are a thousand miles apart. We chat on Facebook and I got to see her a few years back when I drove through her town, but its not the same.

A Short Story

A few years ago, Angela and her mom confessed to me that they had nicknamed me “Iola” after the character from Momma’s Family. They lived right next door and I always managed to show up around dinner time. And they always let me eat. Don’t get me wrong, my parents fed me regularly. My mom and Dad are both pretty amazing cooks. But I was a kid and they had the good stuff next door! They were 100% justified in calling me that. I was a pain.

Date Made: February 10th, 2015  
Block #41
Days on Project: 41
Blocks Made: 44

For Angela

Hummingbird #40

Block #40 For Erick S.

Block #40 For Erick S.

Tonight’s bird is dedicated to the guy at work who saved my bacon tonight. I didn’t get home until after 7 and I was exhausted. I seriously considered phoning this one in and using one of the test birds I did in December. I even had a person picked out for it, someone I didn’t now anymore. Around 8:30 I realized I did infact have time to sew and I should do it because this week is only going to get more stupid.

So I started this bird. About 5 minutes into it, I got the first email. So this bird went together like this: Text some people, sew a little, email some people, sew a little more, text and more text, then sew, make a phone call, sew… My 45 minute bird turned into 1.5 hours. But that is OK. The texts were to Erick and he saved the day, after hours, for the second time in 3 days.

So I bought him a taco this morning for his help this weekend, and tonight, I think he deserves lunch. And I have to pay him back in food because, in our work relationship, it is unfortunately a one way street. There is nothing I will probably ever be able to help him with. I am just not special enough. LOL

Signing off, I am babbling and this is not really going to get edited much because I am tired. So I better stop while I am ahead…

Date Made: February 9th, 2015  
Block #40
Days on Project: 40
Blocks Made: 43

For Erick S.

Hummingbird #39

Block #39 For Lisa J.

Block #39 For Lisa J.

Most nights I have a hard time deciding who to dedicate the block to. I debate, do I have a really good story to tell, is it too personal, is it too boring, is the block to girlie for a guy, is it not ridonkulous enough for this person… It’s exhausting. But tonight – Easy Peasy.

Lisa J. and I went to school together, we didn’t hang out back then. In fact, she tells this story of a recess altercation of which I have no recollection… I plead the fifth. But, I am much nicer now and we have become good Facebook buddies.

Earlier today she messaged me telling me of a dream she had. She and I and one of our other schoolmates were meeting with Bill Gates. Lisa was trying to donate some money to him to help him with his new business. And I had a tattoo of a bird on my right ankle. I immediately said “Well, what was it” and she said she thinks it was a bird. Figures…

What is really funny about this, is that years ago I was a programmer of the Microsoft variety (VB.NET, ASP, TSQL). I used to joke “Uncle Bill Pays My Bills”. Apparently, in this dream we were trying to pay his.

I’m Back In Charge
I am back in charge of all bird operations for awhile. The bird factory was a good idea but I am now out of pre-made birds/bird parts. Starting tomorrow, we are back to a bird a night. I am super busy at work, so I imagine one or two of the “Test Birds” will get promoted to “Real Birds” this week.

Date Made: February 8th, 2015  
Block #39
Days on Project: 39
Blocks Made: 42

For Lisa J.

Hummingbird #38

Block #38 for Fahima

Block #38 for Fahima

This block is dedicated to a very special lady, Fahima. Today is her birthday and this is my way of saying “Happy birthday pretty lady!”

Fahima is the amazing mother of three beautiful children. For my husband’s birthday we invited several of our friends and their kids to go bowling with us. She had a baby at home and couldn’t come but her husband came out and brought her two oldest. Everyone at the party commented on how well behaved and polite his kids were. His response, “Oh thank you, but it’s not me, my wife runs a pretty tight ship”.

My husband picked these fabrics.

Date Made: February 7th, 2015  
Block #38
Days on Project: 38
Blocks Made: 41
Husband’s Picks: #17

For Fahima

Hummingbird #37

Block #36 For Cullen

Block #37 For Cullen

This block is dedicated to Cullen. He is a great project manager and a great person. We were briefly on the same team and I learned so much from him during those few months. Mostly, I learned how to play nice with others.

Cullen used to live out in the country (I think) and he always had great stories and pictures of the critters he trapped. He hung them up in his cube. I always thought of them as the closest thing you could get to mounting a dear on your wall in the office. Instead of a big buck, he had possums and raccoons on display in all their ugly glory.

To Cullen – may you have far less of an issue with wildlife where you live now.

My husband picked these fabrics.

Date Made: February 1st, 2015  
Block #37
Days on Project: 37
Blocks Made: 40
Husband’s Picks: #16

For Cullen

Hummingbird #36


Block #36 For Fauzan


This block is dedicated to my very good friend Fauzan. Fauzan and I joined the same company at the same time (it was my second time, truth be told). Later he left that company and then I followed him soon after to his next company. Then he left me again! Honestly, I am beginning to think its me…

At that first company we were put on the same project pretty early on. It was my first time working with him and I didn’t realize the extent of his awesomeness. I was ALWAYS questioning whether or not he could do something he was proposing. At one point, he stopped me and said “Don’t worry Paula, I’m smart enough”. And to this day, I have never let him live that one down… Can a joke still be funny 7 years later? Yes, yes it can.

My husband picked these fabrics.

Date Made: February 5th, 2015  
Block #36
Days on Project: 36
Blocks Made: 40
Husband’s Picks: #15

For Fauzan

Hummingbird #35

Block #35 For Kirby

Block #35 For Kirby

I have been waiting what feels like forever to post this bird for Kirby. The minute I made it I knew it was hers. It just feels like this one should belong to her. I have nicknamed it “Jail Bird”.

Kirby is a very talented artist. She is insanely good and I am so happy to know her. Seeing her work inspires me in my own. I love the way she expresses a story, event, thought or even a crazy dream. “Mistletoad” is my new favorite, FYI. –>For the record, Kirby has never been in jail! He just looks like he’s on the run<–

Several years ago Kirby gave me permission to recreate my other favorite, “Tortuga“, in fabric. Here is how far I got. I got stuck in a creative block on what to do about the quilting and flowers. The blue background has been removed. He will have yo yo’s for flowers and buttons for eyes.

About a year ago I asked Kirby to draw my babies. We were so pleased with how they turned out and I finally got them framed and hung up. We love them!

IMG_2031 IMG_2032

My husband picked these fabrics.

Date Made: February 1st, 2015  
Block #34
Days on Project: 34
Blocks Made: 39
Husband’s Picks: #14

For Kirby