April 2008

The Ami Simms Newsletter
April 2008
Copyright by Ami Simms

Read this newsletter online where you can see pictures, click links, and buy cool stuff when you get bored.

Proud Momma here. Just wanted to let you know that in addition to modeling for my Rag Fur Jacket pattern cover, Jennie got a REAL modeling job. The photographer who does all the GOOD photos for my books and patterns (and who donated ALL the photography for the Alzheimer's book and CD) has started a new business venture called "It's a Dog Thang." He and his wife draw cartoons of dogs which are featured on T-shirts. Look for them at a specialty store near you AFTER you look at my kid on their web site: www.itsadogthang.com. Personally, I liked last month's version better.

Click on the photo to see a larger version. You'll also notice my other "child" (Madison) was featured too.

The Kirchners want to branch out and draw CATS. If you have any great ideas for cartoons, cute sayings, things that just have to be included in a line of clothing and accessories for cat parents, email me. I'll forward your ideas over to Lee. Make sure the subject line of your email says CATS.

My own suggestion was a cat sitting in a dog dish. The dog says, "I love cats. They're delicious!" Or, a big trembling dog is up in a tree terrified looking down at the cat who is on the ground smirking. The caption reads: "Pay back." I'd also like to see a cat on the BACK of the t-shirt, paws stretched full out, claws out, as if it is hanging on to the back of the person wearing the shirt. OK, I'll shut up now. Look at my kid on the Rag Fur Jacket pattern if you don't have anything else to do.

Madison T. Dog here. It's my turn now. I put a wet nose in Mom's armpit and she jumped right off the computer chair. Works every time.

We are not having spring yet, we are having melted snow, followed by flying slush, more snow, and sunshine. It's WONDERFUL! Mud is produced all over my yard and where there is no mud, the old dead leaves from last year are flaking off. The air almost has that spring time smell to it and "almost" is close enough for me to practice the fine art of rolling. Mom does not like me to roll, so I have to hide behind the big tree. She can only see me when she gets on all fours and looks out the sliding door, which she does sometimes, so I have to wait until I know she's back to working on the web page or something.

My technique is simple. I amble around pretending to sniff the presents the rabbits leave me, as soon as the coast is clear I lean one ear close to the ground, bend a fore leg, and I'm DOWN. I roll and wiggle, flopping back and forth with my paws straight up in the air until I'm all tired out. Then go into the "Sphinx In The Sun" position and wait with a pleasant expression on my face soaking in the sun, or smelling the breeze, or collecting snowflakes. I look very innocent. My dirty deed is only found out when Mom lets me back in the house. You should hear her shriek! I am marched unceremoniously to the garage where every cocklebur is picked out of my fur with a pair of tweezers, every leaf flake is brushed off of me, and all my mud is removed. The she trims my toe nails and cuts the fur between my toes. And THEN she loves all over me, so you see, it's all worth it.

I will be getting a bath on Friday. It's part of the check list for Mom's quilting class on Saturday. Back to Mom…

I have one space left for the April 5th workshop in Flint.

I will keep a waiting list AND your email (if you send it to me) for the next class in Flint which will be in May or June. (Hit reply and put WORKSHOP or WAITING LIST in the subject line.)

Dawn Baggett made a great quilt from a previous String Quilting workshop and just happened to send me a beautiful photograph of it. See it here.

I did more cleaning. I tried not to, but I couldn't help myself. I found more things that I love to death, but just don't have room for. Maybe some of my stuff can live at your house?

Take a look at all my stuff that could be your stuff and go bid on something so I can buy more fabric!

I'm looking forward to teaching at the Machine Quilters' Expo in Manchester NH later this month. You don't have to be registered to take classes in order to attend my free AAQI lecture or to pay the $38 to eat food and listen to me speak at the banquet.

In May I'll be with the Alzheimer's Quilts in Jackson, Wisconsin where they will be shown as part of the It's A Stitch Quilt Guild show. If you're attending either event, please come by and say hello!

Head on over to the AAQI web page for a 5-day Reverse Auction featuring Little Treasures quilts. This is a great event for people who want to buy, not bid. And it's a blast for those who like the thrill of the hunt, the thrill of discovery, the thrill of SHOPPING! There will be 15 quilts up at all times. As soon as one sells, I'll replace it with another. Every day, the prices will go DOWN, around noon. You can always wait until the price drops, but don't wait too long….somebody might beat you to it! The quilts will be changing all the time, so come back often during this week. The reverse auction started on Sunday night and ends on Friday at noon (EST). All profit will fund Alzheimer's research.

Are you miffed that you missed the beginning of the quilt auction? People who get the AAQI Update knew all about it. OK, just barely, but they got a head start. Do YOU want special treatment like that? Of course you do! Sign up for the AAQI Update.


I am featured numerous times in Meg Cox's new book, The Quilters Catalog: A Comprehensive Resource Guide. Thanks, Meg!

(Scroll down on the left hand side….)

There is a new floor up on the Watch Your Step web page.

And you have to wonder what they were thinking about the Californian Chinese food prices in New Mexico.

I learned a great shortcut for searching on PCs from Dale Collie. If you're looking for a document and you kind of know where it is, instead of searching the entire C drive, you can search the main folder where you keep your work, or a subordinate folder. Here's how:

1. Hold down the WINDOWS key and tap the E key, OR right click the START icon (bottom left). Either of those moves will get you to your Explore Menu.

2. Right-click the folder you want to search.

3. In the drop-down box that appears, click on SEARCH.

Go try it out; I'll wait. While you're trying it out, let me tell you that Dale Collie is a US Army Ranger, a professor at West Point, a motivational speaker, and author. Isn't it fun to rub elbows in Cyberspace? I found his tip in SpeakerNet News which we both subscribe to.

Acclaimed filmmakers, Nick Doob and Shari Cookson, are working on a documentary about Alzheimer’s that is being produced by HBO in association with the National Institute on Aging and the Alzheimer's Association.

It is part of a series of films that will take a comprehensive look at the disease. It is similar to HBO's award-winning series, “Addiction.”

Their film is about the experience of having Alzheimer's. It is a personal testimony that will tell the stories of people in an authentic way and show the effect of Alzheimer's from an insider's point-of-view.

The film will be shot in simple verite style by the two filmmakers, without additional lighting, and in most cases, without formal interviews. It will consist of ten to twelve personal stories, which will range from someone who has been recently diagnosed with the disease to someone in the advanced stages of it.

They are looking for compelling stories of people on the brink of important personal decisions such as: retiring from a job due to Alzheimer's; deciding not to drive or having the car keys taken away; wandering challenges/incidents; downsizing to a smaller, more manageable home; and considering or researching long-term care facilities.

If you have a story to share, please email me (hit reply) and tell me about it. Put HBO in the subject line to help me separate it from my other emails. I will forward your email to the researchers who will contact you if they are interested.

Jodie Davis collects both rubber duckies and Cuckoo clocks and simply couldn’t resist melding her passion for quilting with both of these cherished collectibles. The resulting duckie is a chain piecing quilter complete with rotary cutter and the cuckoo clock features a quilter who rotary cuts every hour on the hour. If only we all had the pleasure of such regular time sewing!

Jodie is offering a donation to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative for every Cuckoo Clock and Quilting Rubber Duckie sold during the month of April. Buy a Quilt Shop Cuckoo Clock and $25 goes to Ami’s effort at combating this disease. Add a Quilting Rubber Duckie to your collection and $3 goes to the AAQI. Get your quilting goodies and do good at the same time! Thanks, Jodie!

Please do. Forward the ENTIRE thing to all your friends and even some of your enemies. Everybody enjoys a laugh or two. Please do NOT forward just part of it. Somehow my name gets dropped off when these things float through cyberspace and since I’m writing them for free, I should at least get credit for writing them. If you write a guild newsletter (real paper or online) and would like to “reprint” a particular part of the newsletter you must ask first.

Have a great April!

Ami Simms