Monday, August 3, 2015

American Community Survey

Flaunting myself in front of the Federal Government, or at least the US Census Bureau, I am going to write this post.  They already have me flagged since the infamous Colorado Springs Airport Incident in 2006 and sometimes I get escorted by a Federal Air Marshall when I fly.  Although since 9-11 they have had bigger fish to fry and they have left me pretty much alone.

When I started attending the Louisiana Tea Party meetings, sometimes speaking as a part of the meeting, the IRS got involved.  Thank you Lois Lerner.

We were contacted as part of a group of donors just prior to the last Presidential Election.  They did not find a reason to audit us at that time, but I know of 9 people with similar backgrounds who did get audited.  None were found to owe additional money and 2 actually were owed a small amount of money.

This is not the first time the American Community Survey has darkened my door.  We went through this two years ago.  

The American Community Survey through the US Census Bureau is charged with collecting information beyond what is normally collected in a decade Census or on your IRS Tax Return.  The survey first comes to your house with the words, You Are Required By Law To Answer this Survey in bold letters.  You are only legally required to respond to the US Census with the number of people in the house.  And that is all we do.  The Supreme Court has ruled more than several times that an American Citizen has a right to privacy as given us in the US Constitution.  And as far as I know, the US Constitution takes precedence over all other laws. 

The questions on this survey include:

financial information about my income, employers and financial info about the property.

health of the people living in the house, can we walk up or down stairs, mental condition, problems concentrating or remembering. 

info on any immigrants, date of arrival.

coverage by health insurance, carrier information

what type of internet we have

what type and number of cell phones, desktop or handheld computers.

address of our employers, how long does it take us to get to work, how many days last week did we work.

Are they building a database on us or what?  They say the reason the information is needed is to predict the placement of police stations, fire houses and schools.  However, Civics class taught us that this is the purview of the state and local governments, NOT the Federal Government.  And the mental state of my house inhabitants and the number of computers we have has nothing to do with police, fire houses or school placement. 

Let me say that we file proper and accurate tax returns every year.  But I have refused to return these  paper surveys.  I have refused to give them information when I answer the daily phone calls.  And now, they sent a US Census worker to my door.  And an interesting thing happened.

Remember we recently had our front door replaced?  The outer storm door is a high level security door that has superstrong tempered glass and 3 door strikes.  No one is coming through that door without something like a car to crash it down.

I knew who she was as she walked to the door.  I can see out my studio window.  She rang the bell and the dogs barked, I saw her visibly flinch.

When I opened my inner door, her hand reached out to open the knob on my storm door, but it was locked.  Thank the gods that be!

Fever Convict Cutie Costume, Black/White, Medium
She was willing to enter my house, with our without my permission, despite the fact that I had large sounding dogs barking behind me.  Amazing.  She drove specifically to my door and did not come from my neighbor's house like she was canvassing the neighborhood.  Nor did she go to any other house on my block as she drove away.  She came specifically for us.

When I looked on the internet (yes, we do have internet)  for the American Community Survey one o the things I read on several sites was the number of suits filed against the US Census Bureau for an American Community Survey worker illegally entering their private homes by inserting a foot into an open door.

And I did refuse to give out any personal information.   I guess their next step will be a warrant.  Although last time they backed off when I told them they were harrassing me.

My next post may be from Federal Prison!  But at least you will know where I am and that I am!

And why!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Blueberries and Spools

Yesterday I worked on quilting the Modern Robin piece and my Foxes.  Did you see my Dr. Seuss verse for the Foxes last post?

I did the 5 reds for the July color. The color of August is Indigo.  Well, I have so many blues I thought I would add to the warm side of the color wheel rather than the cool side.  So in that vein, I made a few orange and a yellow.

And I need to trim the Spools Quilt and prepare it for binding.  I won the spool blocks in the Block Lotto at River City Quilt Guild a number of years back.  

We finally got to the Farmer's Market where I scored a ton of blueberries and the eggs I have been devoid of for more than a week now. 

This morning I took 6 pints of blueberries and made blueberry syrup.  This really is better done in the winter but the blueberries are better done in the summer!  I had two jars not seal so I cleaned off the tops of the jars and re-processed them in the water bath.  They both sealed.

So now I have 11 jars - 6 small and 5 large ones.  We like to put it on pancakes and over pound cake at night for late night desserts.

Since I control the sugar that goes into it, it is healthier and of course there are all those blue beauties in there too!

Saturday, August 1, 2015

A Dr. Seuss Moment

This is the Fox.

This is the Box.

This is the Fox Box.

These are the Blox.

The Blox go into the Box.

The Blox go into the Fox Box.

The Fox Blox go into the Fox Box.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Kaleidoscope Quilt Show

I have 4 pieces hanging in the Sassi Strippers Guild Quilt Show at the Jones Creek Library.  Please go see the show as it is a nice representation of what is being done now by traditional quilters.  There are no modern quilts in this group, which I thought interesting.  Well, one can be interpreted as Modern - a charity quilt.

I am always impressed at how wonderful quilts look when they are hanging.

My favorite quilt, outside of my own of course, is this one.  Obviously a Saints fan, this one was titled French Quarter Brees.  The free motion
quilting that interprets the wrought iron fences in the Quarter is so much fun!  I don't particularly like the pinwheels but I guess it is a play off Drew Brees name.

This is a picture of the library lobby where you can see my KerBloom! quilt hanging in the rear center.

The two hanging in the front are pinwheels and a stained glass quilt.  I like the effect of where that stained glass one hangs, it looks like it is lighted.

This fox was interesting.  I just downloaded this pattern myself other day.  It was a free pattern and I thought it might be interesting as a baby quilt for Carrie's fertile friends.

That little foxy guy is really cute and I like the off set of the background.

 There were four jackets in the show, set against a wall containing numerous quilts.  The quilts on the ladder are going to be donated to charity.

That circle quilt is a nicely done piece, however I think I would have varied the circles in a more unpredictable way.  I love the colors in the quilt, they are my favorite colors!

Here are two of my quilt, KerBloom! and Jack and Gourdy Throw a Party.  They are hanging in the back of the lobby area, quite  easy to see.

The pumpkins are a Buggy Barn pattern made from shirts, not for traditional quilters!  That is a candy corn border.

My other two quilts are on the right wall of the library.  

My Forest of Frozen Sorrows was made when the Retreat was cancelled due to the frozen pipes flooding the retreat center.

And Carnivale, which was done in response to a challenge to use some ugly fabric.  The ugly fabric is in the center of the circles.  Not so ugly when you put it with complimentary fabrics.

Even though the show is so much smaller than usual, it is a fun place to go see quilts hanging in a beautiful venue.

Go check out the library quilt show and vote for one of my quilts!  You have to be there in person, but if you are in Baton Rouge go check them out at the Jones Creek Library!

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Spools Gets Some Thread And So Do I

I got my order of threads from Connecting Threads the day I needed black thread for the Spools quilt.  What serendipity!

I ordered several cones and added several spools to get the free shopping.  I "think" I am ahead........

So I got my Avante all threaded up and commenced to quilting.  I still had some issue with the top thread breaking.  But I got it completed.  I really love the way the paisley swirls look in the dark areas as well as on the spools.

Today I went out and spent Frank's money on two new shirts.  Blouses, really.

Trying on some dresses, which is what I went out in the first place, I decided I needed to try harder on my diet.  When I was choosing something to wear to the funeral, I realized I really didn't have fancy clothes to wear.  So I decided to get a dress that would transcend types of occasions and be useful for a night out on the town.

Now it needs a trimming and a binding!

The funeral on Monday was that of Andrew's Grandmother.  She is like my mother, the last of her generation.  It closes a door to the past that a sad part of our lives.

The church was beautiful with Roman  columns, travertine tile and vaulting arches.  And yes, I was in a church and neither me nor the church exploded!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

more photos from the workshop

(I am linking up to Nina Marie's Off the Wall Fridays)

This is Mary Hettsmansperger teaching us to make a wire mesh on a spiral.  She had so many pieces that were incredibly interesting to me for future ideas.  I was so very excited to learn this mesh technique.

This piece is quilted with wire!  Oh, my!  And that circle is copper wire that has been spiraled.

Mica!  New ideas!  It can be sewn through!  Oh yes! Windows potential!

Copper turns blue.........and purple!  

My leaves on a piece of bark from my river birch.  Now I need to preserve my bark so it won't crumble........I need another class!

One of my leaves.  So  I need that hammer too, oh no.....more tools!

Fire blacked leaf, hammered and shaped.

this is a piece of copper, shaped to a cone, and wire mesh made over it.

When I came home with two days worth of work and showed everyone, it seemed like such a small amount of work for two days packed full of exciting things.  But it was an incredible learning experience every second.

We watched techniques then had hands on work time.  It was a prefect mix of both.

Definitely seek this lady out for classes.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Avante Story

I will post the second half of the Metals Workshop later.   I have a funeral to attend this morning.  But do look at the last post to see the first day of Mary H.

But I wanted to tell you about the visit from Bill the HandiQuilter Tech.  He came in the midst of everything this weekend on Sunday morning.  Frank was home to greet him and make sure they dogs didnt bothr him.  He always has treats for them in his bag.

He reset the timing, tweaked the tension to get a good solid stitch and found that the base on the track was loose.

So he and Frank took the machine off the bed and tightened up all the screws.  When they replaced it he made sure he made sure it was parallel to the track.

When they turned it on it ran like a charm!  So many things affect the way the machine works. 

I hope to have some time this weekend to work on the quilt that has been on the frame for a while!