Saturday, 17 October 2009

TV in School

Here is one of those debates where I find myself polling every parent within a 10mile radius.
DH is perched soundly on the other side. Of course, why else would I enlist everyone I can find, if it isn't to persuade DH to change his position, sheerly based on peer pressure?

Like most heated debates, not all the facts are clear. But that will not stop us. Oh no. It will not.

This is the issue at hand:
Each Friday, Babydoll's first-year class watches television. Television in her school class. You read it right. And we're not talking National Geographic or Big Bird reciting his ABCs. It's been the fun motion-picture movies such as Cars and Toy Story. From her description, the time slot is half a movie long: 30 maybe 45 minutes.

Anyone else have an immediate knee-jerk reaction to this?

School is for educating, not entertaining. Am I correct?

I have enough of a hard time getting my daughters out from in front of the television at home, really does it have to be ON during school hours?

Last year, Babydoll had an incredibly high number of no school days--when researched it was revealed that her teacher's spouse was terminally ill. For this I understand.
Could this next teacher be so similarily unfortunate? I might be persuaded if this was the reason for the babysitter-in-a-tube.

DH feels they are only kids and even teachers need the break. I fully, wholeheartedly disagree. For six hours a day they are meant to be enriched. Take recess, take break, take whatever, but for goodness sake, taking the TV route irks me.


Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Home Sweet Home

Thanks for the sweet comments on last post. Yes, I too reread that post 11 times a day, to remind myself how lucky I am. We had a fantastic time in Houston, personally and professionally, and well, most quilters would count a zillion stitches if they could meet half the people we met. It is just proof that everyone's hard work is paying off--it is also huge validation, that if you try, you can. You can! You can!

And we will.

Despite all the joy and the hob-knobbing, there still a long uphill road ahead of us. But first, let's celebrate. RDS. Dublin. 29Oct-1Nov. Be there or be square.

I love me America, but I love me family more. My girls are so precious! And DH done good since my absence Friday. The girls made it to school three out of three days, in their uniforms nonetheless. I was welcomed by a sparkling kitchen sink and a checked and emptied office voicemail.

If it weren't for a demanding pint-size customer at my lunch box counter this morning, I almost would not have known there was chocolate spread sandwiches for all. three. lunches. Uh oh.

Alas, those infamous words, "But daddy made them for all our lunches!" Ah ha.

And in true tradition, he responds, "I asked and that was all she wanted."

Yeah, and if there was Coke Cola in the fridge, she would have insisted on that in her drink container, sucker boy.

Seriously, you have to laugh when a man, thirty-nine years old, six feet and three inches tall, two-hundred-pounds heavy, says, "I had to. She told me to!"
"She" being under three feet tall and weighing less than my packed suitcase somewhere abouts 32kilo.

Oh I still give him a passing grade, otherwise I might not get out of dodge again anytime soon!

Besides, this surprising-he-can-walk-with-no-backbone defense has been around long since our Babydoll began barking orders.

Orders, only a whupped daddy would follow.

I'm home. Home sweet home.

Monday, 12 October 2009

Notes from Houston

If you're a quilter you can imagine my excitement when, while standing talking to the incredibly talented and beautiful Alex Anderson, I'm nudged by who? Another great, Pat Sloan.
I was like, oh, you must want Alex. No? You want to talk to ME?

Though Pat has worked with us on every issue of our magazine, I hadn't met her in person. She's just as nice and lively as her cyber persona would suggest.
After arriving on Friday evening, Terri (IQ Creative Director) and I have had to pull our jaws shut on more than one occasion.

The market itself is so immense, we quickly had to pick and choose where we go and see. Of course, as a business mission, so there is very little time to spare and so many wonderful people and things to see.

Firstly, Friday evening, Luana of Equilter graciously welcomed us into Houston. Another great: breaking bread with Luana, her team Betty and Dijana and the incredibly sweet and fun Bonnie McCaffery, quilter and videocaster. Real people sharing laughs and the quilting love over a gorgeous meal! If you've been reading my blog, you'll know Luana is an early friend, who has been so helpful with the magazine throughout its life--and particularly before its rollout. She's always been the wise voice or words at the other end of my emails and calls.

Saturday was a whirlwind, where do we start? Funny enough as we turned the first booth, we ran into Yvonne, from Belfast. People, the Irish contingent is alive and well in Houston. That evening I was on a mission for magaritas and guacamole, a must have in Houston Texas. This time, our company was Robyn and Beryl, professional longarmers from North and Cork, respectively, a lively fun pair.
With Mexican dinner where we slurped margaritas and pina coladas, finished a fantastic ending to a full day that included Mark Lipinksi, Kaye Wood, Elizabeth and Pam and much more. Beyond that, Terri and I came away with samples, new books, and cutting templates--oh, did I say an Accquilt Cutter? Did I see a tear in Terri's eye? Bless her little designing soul! We have loads of goodies and demonstrations for the RDS show. Needless to say I've already been on the phone to Twisted Threads increasing our booth size for our birthday celebration in a few weeks. (The magazine turns one!!)

Sunday was Moda-delicious time. I guess, Terri and I were so enjoying the moment, we haven't captured the sights in photos. I promise to do that today. We hung out with Rachel, ooing and ahhing over fabrics until Lissa Alexander the Great, relented. Who are we kidding? Moda has been a huge supportor of the magazine. And now, Rachel is our ace in the sleeve with a direct line to Lissa.

Monday holds another day of bliss in Houston. I promise to take more pictures.

It seems our work is paying off. The magazine is a powerful presence here. My favourite moments swing from thanking existing advertisers to seeing the motivated and excited designers scambling for Terri's attention.

Packing my bags, my journey home begins this afternoon and as much as I'm loving market, I'm missing my girls and DH incredibly. This is the first trip where DH has been everpresent on skype and email. What a treat!

I look around my room now, where to begin packing? Jolly ranchers and lipsmackers, American must-haves, of course!

Thursday, 1 October 2009

What's New

What's new? Well for one, I'm writing a post!

The magazine is so busy, and it keeps our team busy nonstop. The Knitting and Stitching comes to Dublin in October and we aligned our Issue 6 (wow! one full year) with the show. A birthday celebration is the excitement.

But before that issue hits the streets, Terri McNeill and I hit the streets of Houston, for the International Trade Show in mid October. That is exciting. We fly out this Friday!

At home, school days mean I've even managed some sewing and quilting. I'll unveil the projects as they finish.

Busy and fierce. But that's not to say there isn't room for laughter and tears.

One day Terri brought a gift for me to the office. She held the gift bag and scanned the room for DH. As she presented it to me, she admitted, "I'm not sure if HE'd like this gift."
For the record, I loved it and apparently so did DH. He hung it up immediately.

A lousy mood, this I usually call a funk. Some are worse than others. We all have funks, but the inherent nature of a funk, is you think it's just you suffering from a funk. During this "poor me" time, I wallow between sadness and anger. I criticize my choices in life. Do I make good choices? Do I chose the impossible? Do I always have to chose the hardest route? Choices.

One day last week, boy, I was in a baaad funk. One cure for a funk is fresh air, so I took to the bank and postal errands that afternoon. As I walked to the bank, my head muddled and my legs heavy, something caused me to look to my forward right. In my line of vision, I saw in white lettering on green background: I CAN DO BETTER.

I stopped in my tracks and thought "Whaaa?" I can do better than this!

When I looked again, all I saw was a political poster, white lettering on green background: Ireland CAN DO BETTER, vote yes for...

Funny, how your eyes see what you want to see. Or what you need to see!