Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Tumbling Tumblers.

Our tree is down and waiting outside for our neighbour to pick it up.  She raises goats and she wanted the tree for them to nibble.  I didn't know goats did that but am more than happy to do another form of recycling.  I must remember the goats when we cut down an evergreen.
I don't have the decorations put away yet as there is still another tree and the house things to take down.  It takes me a bit of time to get everything organized for the next year as I like to have the items for each tree separate and the house decorations in another container.
We have a snow squall watch and it has been snowing-although not heavily, all day.  I have had a large pot of chili cooking on the woodstove and the aroma goes nicely with the outdoor scene.  A bit of snow or a lot, for that matter, doesn't keep me in doors so I was out for a tramp through the bush mid afternoon.  Even if I did want to stay indoors, it is obvious from the look on Heidi's face that she knows it is time to go out and she is just waiting for me.

I have been making these tumbling tumbler blocks for a while from a Missouri Star Quilt Company tutorial.  I want all the tumblers to be from a different fabric and realized I was going to have to get them on my display wall as I couldn't remember what I had done. Good thing I did as I found a couple of repeats. This background looks orange but it is actually a mottle brown.
This photo reminds me that I have to put all the pictures I took this year in a separate folder and marked with the year.  I have so many pictures that if I don't do this, it takes me ages to find anything.
Happy New Year.  Thank you for reading this blog throughout 2014.  Your support means more to me than I am able to express.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014


Are you getting back to routine yet or do you wait until after Jan. 1st of the new year?  I am slowly disassembling my decorations.  I took down the small tree that is in the studio and, tomorrow, the big one in the living room will also come down.  It is a real one and I don't want to leave it too long and have it become a hazard.  It is also quite wide and takes up a lot of room so we would like to reclaim that space,  I bought another everlasting (fake) one after Christmas so we will be able to leave that up longer next holiday.
I have also finished another column for the Quilt Pattern Magazine, the on line mag. for which I write.  By the way, they have a great special right now for new subscribers.  It is a great magazine full of articles and patterns and it comes right to your house via the internet so you don't have to remember to go to the store to pick it up.
Hubby has come down with a cold and is taking it easy today.  In addition to the undecorating, I am working on sewing a few new clothes.
Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas.  I will be getting back to my fiction Friday's in the new year.

Heidi got new booties in her Christmas stockings to help keep her feet warm and free of snow clumps when we go walkies.  They don't stay on any longer than any other the other ones but she does find them more comfortable so I am going to try and rig up something to keep them in place.  A string like little children have on their mittens?

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Am I Ready??

I wonder if a person is every completely ready for Christmas or does there come a point were you just stop?  I still have one more gift to make, another to locate and a few to wrap.  Baking is done, shopping is done as is the decorating.
 At this point, my quilt room is beginning to feel abandoned.  I don't even seem to be able to quilt at quilt group.  I took the materials to make some mug totes and forgot how to do them.  I don't know how a person could forget how to make a bag but I do always seem to excel at the wrong things.  Nevertheless, it was still a good day and I did, ultimately, almost get one done.
The weather is wavering between great and iffy for Christmas Day so, although we are supposed to be at my husband's family for the day, if the roads aren't good, we will be staying put.
I will probably not be posting now until Boxing Day so I do hope and pray that you will all have a wonderful Christmas.  If you are travelling, watch for those who are inattentive or just being human and making a mistake.  Being on time is not as important as being safe.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Walking by the Woods on a Sunny Afternoon

 Lovely walking today with the sunshine and crispness.  It really isn't cold enough to be considered 'crisp' but it looks as though it should be.  taking photos was a bit of a challenge as Heidi is used to me charging along and hardly giving her time to leave messages for other dogs.  today, I kept stopping to take photos and telling her to wait.  She got it eventually but for the first two I was expecting her to start moving just as I pressed the shutter with the resulting picture of the sky.
I wish I had had my camera ready earlier as a bald eagle flew toward us and low enough to see his head.
This first photo is part of the streams that flow on either side of the road.  I always like the look of the snow around the water-or ice.
 We were on the return trip when I took this picture of Heidi.  She is usually allowed to 'walk' herself on the return trip once we get to the driveway.  In the summer, she usually grabs the leash end in her mouth and trots up the hill.
These last two photos were taken on different days and you can see what a difference the sunshine makes.


Thursday, December 18, 2014

Hark the Herald Angels Sing

When do you start playing your Christmas music? Hubby has had the televisions fireplace channel and its seasonal music on since the beginning of November.  That was too early for me.  I just put my favourite CD's in the player this evening and am listening to the 3 Tenors Christmas.  I also have a number of CD's of the Salvation Army with their brass bands playing both traditional and some lesser known carols.  If I am in the mood for  lighter fare, I put on Bony M or Hawksley Workman. 
All are great for sewing or working on the computer.
I know that those of you who have large families and/or are not retired probably still have a lot to do to prepare for the big day.  I am pretty much done although I do like to leave some things to the last minute because wrapping gifts or baking help me keep the Christmas spirit.
What ever and where ever I am, I enjoy having the music of Christmas filling the air.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Living Pencil Sketch

We are surrounded by a black and white wonderland.  There was a wet snowfall last night and it has stuck to all the trees and the world looks like a pencil sketch.  I was wishing I had my camera when we drove to Huntsville this morning although I have found the photographs don't really capture this type of scene.
There was a photo on the Almaquin Highlands Photography Project Facebook page that contrasted the white with a blue bird house.  Very effective.  If you would like to see a more professional look at this area, check out the page.
I got all my medical appointments done this morning and I am still healthy as a horse (wonder where that saying came from?).  It has been a long day and we were concerned in case we would be late getting back so we arranged for our neighbour friend to come and let out Heidi if needed.  Fortunately, we were back on schedule although we wondered if we were going to be able to make it up the driveway.  A combination of wet snow and a hill with a curve caused the tires to spin but we did make it.  Heidi was glad to have her pack back home and to be able to do a run outside.
Now it is time to get supper.  No idea what to make.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Thursday is Wednesday?

Mug Tote

I have been busy making these mug totes.  They are great little stocking stuffers for those who take their own mug to work or meetings.  They are fun to do in various theme fabrics such as sewing, sports, pets etc.

Have finally finished the quilt that seemed to have taken up permanent residence on my frame.  I have a couple more gifts to make and that is the last of my Christmas gift sewing.

It has been mild all day and it just started snowing.  The flakes are huge.  They are the kind that little children love trying to catch on their tongue.  When did we stop having that kind of fun?
Tomorrow I am off to Huntsville again for shopping and a couple of medical appointments.  For some reason I was thinking they were Thursday although I have them marked down on my calendar for Wednesday.  Good thing the staff phoned me.  Of course, I didn't really listen to the first one and got a bit of a shock when I tuned in to what the second caller was saying. 

Friday, December 12, 2014

Trees and a Carrot Nose

This is our tree for 2014.  I am not sure if you can see them clearly, but our lights are candle shaped.  I decided to limit the number of decorations to give the tree more of a Victorian look.  Some of the decorations are from the 50's and others, I made.
This snowman set is one of my favourite nativities.  Isn't the carrot nose on the infant Jesus the cutest thing?

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Getting a Tree-Step Two

We went off to Huntsville today and I got the majority of my Christmas shopping finished.  We also went to Habitat for Humanity's Restore shop where I found a nice fake Christmas tree.  It was small but we though we would just make do with that this year.  The tree we brought in from the property yesterday really was pretty sparse.
After we got home and unpacked, dear hubby wondered about putting two real trees together as, when growing that way, they look quite bushy.  He trotted out and cut one down and brought it over to the house.  I noticed it was a great improvement on the first one and would be suitable on its own.  The only drawback was that it is REALLY big around.  However, it could be trimmed.  It is now sitting in the standing in the sun room, dripping.  Once it finishes washing the floor, I will trim it and get it down to a manageable size.  Then it can be moved into the living room and decorated.  The small one we bought at the Restore will be great for the sun room.  The little white one that is already there will go to the bedroom.  So, from not having any tree, we now have three.
I should also admit that the real tree we are going to decorate is the one hubby was going to cut down in the first place.
Sooner or later, we will have a decorated tree this year!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

A Mouse Was Stirring

We have had a minor Christmas set back.  We got our tree up and I was starting to decorate when I noticed a strong urine smell.  Then we found a dead mouse.  Apparently one (or more) got into the container.  We were going to try and get rid of the smell with spray but I decided it just wasn't healthy so down came the tree and was taken outside.
This afternoon we walked through the property and found a small tree that we will use.  It isn't very bushy and I am not sure what will happen when I decorate it but it will do for now.  I will buy another when the sales come one.

I have been busy working at the order for microwave bowl holders that I received from a local store.  They are almost done and then I will get the bag inserts finished and that will be another thing done..  We are heading to Huntsville tomorrow for an unexpected shopping trip.  I was told by a friend that one of the stores is renovating and having a 50% off sale so away we go.  I will finish my Christmas shopping while there so can mark that off my list as well.

My finger has all but healed from the rotary mishap and I am thinking about getting a ruler guard.  They are a strip with a raised edge that slides onto the ruler and stops the cutter from slipping.  They are on sale right now so I think they might be a worth while investment.  Not sure if I will have to make an adjustment when measuring but, if so, it shouldn't be much.  If you have these on your rulers I would appreciate hearing about your experience.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Fiction Friday: The Conclusion.

"I have proof that she took it", Ethel continued.  " She couldn't have seen the ring clearly enough to describe it with just the glimpse she said she had.  That proves it.  Just as I said, she came back later.  I am certainly going to complain to my nephew about you hiring criminals.  She has probably being doing this with other residents but they have been covering for her.  You can be ready for a lawsuit.  My nephew gave me that ring for my birthday.  He told me not to let anyone see it in case it was stolen.  I didn't think such a thing could happen to an old lady but he was right.  He is a good boy , my nephew.  Not like some people I could name".  Ethel stared at Jenny so everyone was sure to know who she meant. 
"When did your nephew give you the ring, Ethel," Emma asked?
""It's none of your business.  I don't know why you are butting in but it was in March.  March 12, Mrs. Nosy if you need to know that as well.  He gave it to me then all wrapped up and looking so pretty and now it is gone.  He is going to be so upset."
"March.  Hmm, that was two months ago."  Emma thought for a moment remembering something her son had told her.  "Ethel is right, Mrs. Morrison, we do need to call the police.  There has been a crime.  It's okay, Jenny," she said in response to the girl's gasp, "just trust me."
Emma's table was the centre of attention at supper time with the staff and residents stopping by to congratulate her on solving a crime that had stumped the police.  Everyone wanted to know how she had done it and she had answered the same question so many times she was beginning to think it would have been easier to have handed out a pamphlet.
"I wasn't positive, of course, but my son, he's the police detective,  had described the ring that was taken in the jewelry store robbery.  That was the one where the young clerk was shot and killed."  Emma paused thinking of the wife and little child that had been left without a father and husband because of someone's greed.  "I've seen Mrs. James nephew when he came to visit and he didn't look like he could afford a ring like Jenny described.  So, I just put two and two together with a bit of guesswork and realized he must have been the thief.  Apparently, he gave it to her for safe keeping and then started hiding her belongings so when he took back the ring, everyone would just think she was losing her mind.  Not only is he a thief and murderer but he was using an elderly relative that doted on him.  Jenny is the one, however, who deserves the credit for spoiling his plan.  If she hadn't been so observant, she might be the one in jail and not this dreadful man"
Emma smiled at the young woman who had received her share of attention.  Jenny was laughing with some of the residents and, for the first time, looked as though she had some self confidence.
"She's going to be alright" Emma thought and reached for her cup of tea.

Thursday, December 4, 2014


A few days ago our Heidi saw a little vole and has been trying to find it again so she can play.  She goes out and sniffs around, barks at the neighbour dogs and sits staring at the spot where she saw her little friend.  I call her in and then an hour later she is telling me she wants out again so she can repeat the previous action.  Gets frustrating for me but she doesn't seem to want to give up.
I finished making another tea cosy and microwave bowl container today. The latter is my biggest seller this year.
Tomorrow is our tree lighting and then Saturday, the parade.  Our church usually has a float in the parade but this year we have had to cancel.  The young woman who does the costumes and float is extra busy building a barn for her goats.  It will be nice to be able to watch the parade with my hubby for a change.  He is usually on the float and I am the church photographer making sure the participants get to see the entries.
Tomorrow is also the next installment of the Quilting Detective.  Be sure to check in and see if Emma has solved the puzzle of the stolen ring.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Cruelest Cut

I have been derelict in my posting responsibilities this week.  I cut my finger quite badly on Sunday and typing as well as other activities have been more difficult. 
I was cutting some fabric when the rotary cutter slipped and gashed my index finger.  We got it bandaged and have now left it to heal.  This is the second time I have done that although I am always careful and make sure the blade is on the fabric and not the ruler.  Last time I did a worse job than this one.  I have now ordered a butcher's glove which I will wear on my left hand.  It is cut and stab resistant so, hopefully, that will solved the problem.
If you are interested in getting one, they are for sale on ebay (along with everything else).
Hubby and I went north to do some shopping today.  It was a dreadful drive both ways so we were glad to get home.  And home is where I am going to stay until Friday evening when we will go out for supper and then to the village tree lighting.
I am behind in my sewing and decorating so hope to have, at least, the latter done this week.
Stay safe if you are on the road.  Better to go a bit slower than to not arrive home.