This afternoon, I depart for my annual trip to the International Quilt Festival in Houston. I'm so excited! This year I'm staying at the Crowne Plaza, where the beds are absolutely divine. And I'm looking forward to being in Houston, because it got COLD here last night. This is the first time we've been down in the 30s this fall. Brrrr.
I'm taking classes which focus on the quilting itself - most are longarm classes with the exception of my Wednesday class.
Wednesday - Quilt Line as the 3rd Design Aspect with Hollis Chatelain - all day
Thursday - Background Frenzy Sampler with Pam Clarke - afternoon
Friday - Gadgets & Gizmos (longarm tools) with Donita Reeve - morning
Borderlines with Pam Clarke - evening
Saturday - Longarm Fancy Feather Frenzy with Linda V. Taylor - afternoon
Sunday - Free-Motion That Fits with Sue Patten - morning
The preview night is Wednesday also. From 5:00-7:00 is the private preview of the show for IQA members, then from 7:00-10:00 is the general public preview. A lot of people do their shopping on preview night, but I like to take pictures of the quilts because its less crowded. I've left plenty of time in my schedule to shop and look at the special quilt exhibits during mornings or afternoons when I don't have a class. I usually go to the convention center intending to spend the whole day anyway, and it works pretty well for me.
I got my packing done last night, and was kind of surprised that it worked out so easily this time. Packing is an evolving art for me - I'm constantly trying to find the best way to pack the "stuff" - clothes are easy, but the little cosmetic bag and the toiletry items are a work in progress. I used to put my makeup, meds, and things in my carry-on bag, but the recent restrictions have nixed that. I've picked up some nice clear vinyl bags (in the right sizes!) for the things that are solids, and have resorted to good old ziploc freezer bags for the things that could leak. Call me crazy, but I was pretty happy that everything fit in my small rolling bag. On the other hand, I was ticked off to find the handle on my favorite carry-on bag had broken (darn cheap webbing) but the shoulder strap is in good shape, so I can still use it. I've got my little camera bag, my tiny purse, and my laptop in it, with room left for a paperback book. I put my eyedrops, inhaler, and lipstick in another little ziploc bag so that I can (hopefully!) sail through security with no problems. I've got a direct flight, and I've already done the online check-in so I think I'm good to go. Now, if I can get through the next 6 hours of work....