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What do Welding, Patterns and Showers have in common?


Jerry's downstairs using his welding machine and I'm upstairs to make sure I don't walk by the garage and have it flash and burn my eyes. With no door between the garage and house, it's easy to happen. 

Did you know that if you see someone welding you should LOOK AWAY! It can do some serious damage to your eyes. 

That's why welders use those shields.

Except in Colombia. 

Jerry came home from a walk one day and told me he'd seen a man welding down the street. The fella was fixing an iron fence gate - which is pretty much a requirement here in Barranquilla. 

Having a gate and fence that is.

Anywho, the man didn't have a welding machine - which provides and regulates the power and heat to weld. He had taken regular old wires - attached to the Stinger at one end with clamps on the other. He then clamped them onto the wires coming off the pole to the house at the panel box on the side of the house. He used the iron gate for a ground. 

That was bad enough but he only had on sunglasses to protect his eyes.

The stinger is the part where the hot comes out. 

I guess.

I worried about children and dummies people that don't know these things...like I used to be before Jerry set me straight.

Anyway, every time he welds, the lights in the house flicker and the fan slows down.  

It's really bugging my eyes.

But that's ok.

I came upstairs to take a shower, work on a pillow cover and blog. And not just to save my eyes, although I am. (Kids talked me into one of those flat screens a couple years ago to help prevent eye damage too).

So...I began this pillow...

It's a kit that I bought at a yard sale for 25 cents.

Knowing me, I probably got them both for a quarter.

I haven't used a kit or pattern in ages - until recently - but I used to think I needed them and bought many, many of them and then every time I'd see my sister, she'd give me a couple that she didn't want anymore.

So, in looking to use up some of this stuff that followed me to Colombia - and thinking gifts - and that most people are slightly more traditional than I am - and that I have about 30 pillow forms that I'm not using...I decided to make pillow covers.

The above kits had the fabric already cut with fusible webbing on them. It also had iron on transfers for the face and leaves, so I just had to find a piece of fabric to iron it all down on. The camouflage fabric has been with me since the kids were teenagers. I liked the arrangement on the picture so I didn't change a thing.

I then sprayed some glue onto the back to attach the batting (my favorite way to baste) and while waiting for it to dry I hopped into the shower.

Next, I'll add free motion stitching and some paint.

It's been getting ready to rain here for a couple hours now and I get nervous when I'm in water and it's thundering and lightening outside so I figured I'd better get that done before I lost my opportunity.

I have NEVER seen thunder and lightening like I do here. Not even in SW Florida. We live on top of a hill and we're really close to the clouds and consequently, all that comes with the rain.

That picture is pretty typical when it isn't raining. But as fast as weather moves around Baranquilla, there were probably rain clouds a couple minutes away.

PS (Those clouds touch the tower across the street and down the block from the house). We're way up here.

We also lose the water almost every day. Sometimes it's out for 5 minutes - other days 8-12 hours. We never know.

So you'd better wash dishes, clothes and stinky you know whats when you have the chance.

We heard on the news that if you take cold showers you'll live longer. 

Here in Barranquilla, most of the houses don't have hot water heaters. So...we take cold showers every day. Sometimes two or three depending on what we're doing and where we've been.

After six months of living here, I'm still not used to it.

But now that I know I'm going to live longer as a result...I kind of like them.

The night that our belongings arrived we had no water. 

The 40 foot container holding our stuff, pulled up (helped by a tractor trailer) at about 2am and we - eight of us - unloaded until 6am. 

I served up all the water in the fridge, then the soda but when I got out the pitcher of green tea - no one wanted any. 

They said they'd rather be thirsty.

The tiendas were closed because it was the middle of the night so we couldn't buy any water either. 

At any rate, you really don't want to drink from the tap here. 

I would have been better equipped to handle it if they'd shown up at noon the previous day like they'd said.

We still didn't have water by 7am so Jerry and I dropped into bed really needing showers.

When we got up at around 10am, you guessed it - nada agua.

But...we do have this little alleyway that runs down the south side of the house. On one side is the house; the other a 10 or 12 foot concrete wall. 

At the end of the alley is a drain which dumps all of the rain off of the house onto the concrete floor and then out to the street.

Thankfully, it rained that day. After sitting miserably dirty for a couple hours, we decided to get under that stream of water and take a shower.

In dirty house rain water.

It's the only time Jerry has picked up the camera in...oh...about five years.

Way back when I was sending out group emails, I'd included this picture and NOT ONE person asked me about it. 

I thought is was pretty funny that nobody wanted to touch on that subject.

Thankfully, we haven't had to do that again.

So...here I sit blogging.

Because I just HAD to show you the pictures of Sophia's birthday owls.

They were slightly traumatized after I finished them because they had their eyes on through most of the process so I sat them on the ironing board in front of my big eye art - which I totally adore. Figured they'd get some sympathy. The puppy and kitten have both been through much worse.

Always, when I make anything with eyes, I put them on last. But I was following a pattern.

Yep - they're made with a pattern which is from a lady I met last year (was it ONLY a year ago?!?) in Houston at International Quilt Festival at the Superior Threads booth. (I got to teach my bohemiannie! bags there).

Her name is Annette Unrein but she goes by Annie. I liked her right away. :)

Her pattern is called Hoot 'n' Annie Owl Softies and I just couldn't resist it. Sometime soon I'll tell you how I texturized the fabric but you can look on her website if you want to know now. 


Here they are downstairs sitting on my little work table - a TV tray which used to belong to my parents.

They were exploring that day and ended up on my new used shelf which I hung over the computer and is now full of family pictures.

PS (I just went to pee and we have no water). 

I know...too much information. 

In case you're worried about my keyboard, I did clean my hands with some of that antibacterial stuff and a damp wash cloth - which I always have one of hanging around. 

But I digress.

They (I'm going to let Sophia name them) also visited the bedroom and sat on the new used chair that goes with the precious little vanity we bought last week.

Is that a cute chair or what?!? You ought to see the vanity.


OK - one last picture and I'm back to the play room - where - BTW - Madonna is playing on my new CD player. Argentina.

When I was in the states, my brother, Jeff and my daughter-in-law, Winge both downloaded lots of their music for me so while I've been typing and looking at pictures, I've also listened to Kanya West, JayZ, Kid Cudi, Pharrell, Mr. Hudson and then Jim Croce. 

I L-O-V-E love having music. My CD collection was getting old and worn out and the radio here in Barranquilla doesn't play much in English.

Oh yeah... the picture.

Now if only the lights would quit flickering.

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