Just my musings about life, quilting, my family and my dog.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I had a bad day

I was so proud of myself two weeks ago for organizing my sewing room.  I found a place to keep books, magazines and my giant jug of distilled water for my fabulous steam iron.  My boys have moved out - mostly.  Those of you who think you are empty-nesters know exactly what I mean: Their bodies are gone but most of their stuff still resides right where they left it.  SO.  I went into their room and emptied out a bookshelf and dragged it into my sewing room.  I stacked up some of my favorite quilting books, some magazines, and my jug of distilled water.

Very nice!  The water is off the floor, the spigot is easy to reach and these books are off my cutting table.  Win, win, win.

Alas!  Look carefully at the book on the far left.  See how wrinkly and bulgy it looks?  Imagine seeing EIGHT books  looking like that.  Imagine trying to figure out when you had read all of them in the steamy bathtub and failed to notice.  Imagine noticing, finally, that the floor is a bit damp and the WATER JUG IS EMPTY!!!  What you don't see is that where the cute, glass bottle stands, there used to be a flat pile of all my latest magazines.  When I picked the pile up, it weighed at least ten pounds.  The books weighed another five because they were farther away on the shelf and not all of them were soaked.  Imagine the previously full water jug now weighed NOTHING.  I did not want to throw all the books away.  Some I hadn't read yet.  Imagine, I had quilting books I'd never read!  You don't have that situation, do you?

DH suggested, when I could finally hear him over my wailing, that I put them outside in the sun.  We live in San Diego, Man, there is only sun about 5 hours a day this month and the other hours are rather damp.  I considered my dehydrator but the one I have has a central stem.  AHH, the oven.  I have two so I could put all the shelves in one oven.   The books went in, I set it to low and crossed my fingers.  That was Sunday night, 8/14/2011.  I checked every day, I turned them, I rotated them, I opened them flat.  I paid more attention to them than I gave to either of my children.  FINALLY, on 8/23/2011 the last book was dry.

This is what formerly soaked, dried in the oven, favorite quilting books look like after 9 days.

I spent an entire evening peeling apart pages. They did not cooperate very well.  Some did better than others.  My glorious, modern Japanese quilting book might have been thrown across the room in frustration on it's way to the recycling bin.  It was late. I don't remember.

I thought that ironing might help.  It takes a REALLY long time to iron a book.  The one on the left in this photo is the result of ironing.  I'm not sure I can face that for the rest of them.

Nope, not a good day.  I did learn, however, that I am NEVER going to buy distilled water in a 2.5 gallon jug again.  The spigot didn't leak, a seam on the bottom developed a tiny pin hole that must have slowly leaked out over a few days.  Dang!

The worth of a book is to be measured 
by what you can carry away from it.  
                              ~James Bryce


  1. Oh, Chris... I am so sorry this happened... *sigh*

  2. That's heart breaking; I've rescued wet books by carefully peeling the pages apart while they are still damp, then laying paper towel between each page. It's time-consuming, but there is much less damage to the pages than waiting till they are dry.

    Hope the majority are still useable.

  3. oh that's such a shame - I hope you can still use most of them. I'd be in a bad mood for a long time if that hapened to me. :(


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