Saturday, October 31, 2015

Saturday Posting.

Have you noticed that I seemed to have changed from posting my blog on Friday to doing it on Saturday?  It didn't start out to be intentional; more just how my scheduled worked out a couple of times.  This weekend, it was a conscious decision.  It seems that by Friday I have nothing to say.  Or, nothing that I can make sound remotely interesting.  By Sat., my brain is working again or for what passes for working anyway.
I am just getting the last of my house work done and then can get back at quilting.  Chicken is in the oven for supper, pumpkin pie pudding is made and laundry done.  What is pumpkin pie pudding you ask?  It is, basically, pumpkin pie without the shell.  Still taste great and no nasty wheat ingestion.  I have created a crust made with garbanzo flour that is good, but, truth to tell, I don't much like making pie crusts anyway.
We have had a really bevy of birds around the feeder today.  These are the year round ones so I hope now that they see that the free lunch is available again they will hang around.  Of course, the feeder also attracts the squirrels which sends the dog into fits and her barks are punctuated by me yelling " Quiet, Heidi".  It doesn't do any good but I like to add something to the noise.
Don't forget to put your clocks back tonight.  I have already done the one in the bedroom. 
If your little ones are going out for Halloween, make sure they are easy to see.  They are too precious to risk for the sake of another piece of candy.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Make Quilts Not War.

I had a perfectly lovely day quilting with two friends.  Even the snow showers and sloppy conditions driving home weren't enough to take away from the peacefulness of the day.  We each managed to get the two blocks of the first BOM finished, have lunch and visit before it was time to leave.  This is going to be a monthly event; more often if we can and I already am looking forward to the next time.
Getting together with two people who share the same interest, who all respect  (and appreciate) each other's individuality is a rare treat.
 In our world, there is often so much pressure put on an individual to conform or be left out.  Those who think or act differently from the group can frequently feel that have to change who they are to have friends, be employed or succeed in life.
I think quilter's in general are a fairly accepting group of people,  perhaps,  because our craft has so many aspects to it.  One person may like hand quilting, another machine, someone else prefers applique and yet another only does modern quilts.  There are endless variations of the same art and none are thought to be either right or wrong.  Once in a while you may meet a person who insists that unless a quilt is entirely done by hand then it isn't a quilt but they are a rarity.
Perhaps the rulers of countries that want to wage war on another should be made to sit down and learn to quilt first. The new world slogan would be "Make Quilts Not War". 

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Sword of Doom

We escaped the worst of the predicted wind and rain storm in our area.  We did get some rain and the wind was quite strong at times but not enough that any trees came down.  I was prepared for power outage which didn't happen either so our day proceeded as normal.
I processed a bushel of apples turning most of them into sauce but also filled a dozen freezer bags with slices for pie and other desserts.
I then spent the rest of the day quilting.  I did a bit of work on the foundation pieced quilt which is slow and tedious but gave me a break from quilting the baby blanket.  I got blanket done and ready for binding.
Tomorrow I will be away for the day as a couple of other quilting friends and I are meeting to-what else-quilt.  We all bought the same kit and thought it would be fun to work on the blocks together.  I have got everything ready to go and am looking forward to the day.  Thursday is hubby's turn to cook so I won't have to rush back and decide what we are going to eat.
I need to really get at the foundation pieced quilt and get it done.  It is another of those projects that hang over your head like a sword of doom.  I think I will see if some of my friends would like to do a couple of blocks.  The quilt will be an illustration for a pattern design I have sold and the quicker it is finished, the better.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Leaves Dipped in Sugar

I've had a productive day.  I completed two tops: a baby blanket in flannel and a Christmas table runner and am planning on getting the first one loaded into the frame for quilting tonight.  This baby one is for a boy so I want to get another done for a little girl.  These will, along with the table runner, be put into a craft sale in Nov.  If they don't sell, they will go to the on line site or the local store that carries my products.
I sold a wall hanging on the weekend at a large art sale.  It is the first time I have put anything in that and was surprised to hear that it was bought the first day.  Will definitely do that one again next year.
Before I got to the quilting today, hubby, little dog and I went for a drive in the country.  He wanted to take some wood to his family's hunt camp and I went along because I am a good wife.  I hadn't been back there in quite a long time and the roads were just as bad as before.  The scenery and lovely day made up for that though.
I took a couple of photos on the way back.  The other pictures are of an little oak tree in our back yard.  I took it yesterday morning just as the sun was coming up.  I really liked how it made the frosted leaves look like they had been dipped in sugar.

Saturday, October 24, 2015


It was a wonderful day yesterday other than the Blue Jays disappointing loss.  The weather was sunny and warm so it was a good day to get the yard work done.  I gathered up all the garden gnomes and got them safely tucked into a large tote, packed leaves around the shrubs that needed some protection and stacked up the lawn furniture.  The rose bushes have stakes around them ready for the top soil and burlap that will keep them safe for the winter.
Hubby did a bit of touch up on my car where rust had come through.  We never had a problem with rusting in Alberta as they don't use salt on the roads.  We will have to do a better job of matching the paint come spring but this will keep until then.
After the work was finished, I made mugs of hot chocolate and we sat on the step while drinking it.  Heidi got a marrow bone treat as she had been helping.  Her job is to make sure we are not attacked by squirrels-especially the black ones, when we are either outdoors or in.
We have the snow tires on the van, the car will be going in next week to get done so we are ready for winter.

This mornings sunrise.

Heidi on alert.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Playing in the Leaves.

I got the scarves delivered and the cheque goes into the bank tomorrow to pay for the two sweaters I ordered.  I decided to buy something for myself as a reward for getting the job done.  Usually everything goes back into my quilting but as this wasn't strictly a quilting job, I thought I deserved a little treat.
It has been another lovely fall day here in the back woods and I took Heidi for a nice long walk through the bush.  I like wandering amongst the trees, up and down the hill that slopes toward the pond.  It is especially nice when there is a carpet of leaves to kick toward the dog and watch her try to catch them before they hit the ground.  I will be raking up the leaves around the house shortly and packing them around by rose bushes and other plants that need extra protection through the winter.
Whenever I do this, I remember that when we lived in Edmonton I used to walk along the back alley picking up bagged leaves that the neighbours put out.  The only trees we had that dropped their leaves was an apple and a plum.  All the rest were evergreens.  Certainly not the case now.  We have 10 acres of falling compost.
I made hubby an apple pie for dessert tonight as he has been so good about taking over extra house duties while I sewed.
Life is good.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Job Finished.

I finished the neck scarves today.  They will be going to the customer tomorrow and I have let her know that I won't be doing them anymore.  What a relief to have them finished.
Now I can get back to my regular sewing.  I bought some more flannel fabric today to go with the baby panels and once I finish my magazine article, a quilt that is on the design wall and the one I have sold to a magazine, I can do them.
Quilters seem to have no end to  projects but I don't think any of us find it stressful.  Other long 'to do' lists can create anxiety but not quilting.  I think it is just accepted as normal to have half a dozen projects on the go at the same time.  At least, it is for me.
It was nice being able to spend some time with my friend today.  We did some shopping, had lunch and talked non stop.  We have been friends for about 40 years so lots of shared times.
Tomorrow, I am giving a driving lesson to a couple of young lads that are going for their licence.  I was a driver educator before retiring so I enjoy passing on my skills.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Blue Jays: the team and the birds.

We are suffering through the fourth Jay and Royals game.  We have to go out shortly but are desperately hoping that the Jays will get a few more runs to at least close the gap. 
I have been working away all day at these Scout scarves and should have them finished tomorrow.  the money I make doing this is just simply not worth being tied up for three days.
Tomorrow  I am going to Huntsville to meet a friend, do a little shopping and visit.  Our weather has warmed up a bit and I would have loved to have been outside doing some work.  I did take Heidi for her (and my) walk which was really nice.  Our yard has been filled with blue jays (the birds) and a number of smaller birds and it is a real pleasure watching them flitter around finding seeds.  The squirrels have been fighting for their share of the bounty which is a real source of irritation to the dog.
Well, off I go. 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

First Snowfall.

We had our first snowfall this morning and it is still coming down lightly.  It won't stay, of course, but it is a reminder of the coming season-if anyone actually needs reminding.  We will need to get in our lawn furniture, stow the garden gnomes and other ornaments.  The hummingbird feeder has to be cleaned and the other feeder put out.  I have already got one in place and filled it for the jays who have placed first claim on the seeds.  We had two males sparring on the front lawn this morning.
We have to go into the village today and I think I will go into the feed store and get some sunflower seeds.
I love watching all the birds but the jays have always been my favourite.  I know they are bossy and noisy but they are also intelligent and so colourful.   I would love to see cardinals as well but we don't get those.
I am still feeling the effects of my allergies and the dizziness but getting better.  Now that the cooler weather has arrived, everything should be clearing up.
Have a great weekend.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Another Top Finished.

A rainy, windy day here in the back woods.  A lot of the leaves are on the ground as you will have seen from yesterday's photo.  It was a good day to go shopping which is what we did.  I bought some flannel fabric for some crib quilts, groceries and a few items to make crafts for a Christmas sale.
I am gradually feeling a bit better each day although not enough to chance driving any distance so hubby took me to Huntsville.  I had to drive back though as his hip was very painful.  I hope he gets the replacement soon.
I finished the quilt top today but it will have to wait for a bit to get quilted.  We are having company for the weekend and I have to do a quick tidy up so I can pretend that our house always looks that way

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

My Favourite Model

Busy day today.  Two meetings plus a Blue Jays game to follow.  I did et out for a walk and have almost finished putting together another quilt top.

I took a couple of photos while on our walk.  The first is, of course, my favourite model and the second shows some of the wood my husband has prepared for this winter.

Tomorrow I am off to buy groceries and a few other things and then, hopefully, finish the quilt top.  I should have a photo of it to share before the day is done.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

I'm a Winner

I've had a busy day here in the backwoods.  I made a large batch of pickled beets, cooked pumpkin and made a curried soup and finished all the blocks for a quilt top.  I had a bit of a problem with the last block as I was short of a piece of fabric 1 inch by 7.  Isn't that the most frustrating situation?  I found some fabric that was pretty close and used it as a substitute.  It won't be noticeable because it is so narrow. 
I am now doing the horizontal sashing strips so should be able to get it all done this week and ready for quilting.
I haven't been feeling well for a few days.  My allergies were making me dizzy and nauseous so I had to spend a lot of time laying down.  I cut back on my medication today and that has helped.  Rather opposite of what you would think would happen but I am sensitive to most medications.  If I take a whole Dristan tablet, I go to sleep.
It has been raining pretty steady since the morning and a lot of our leaves have come down.  Yesterday was so lovely that even though I wasn't feeling well, I had a hard time staying in doors.  Hubby and I went for a short and slow walk through the bush in the afternoon.  It has been a disappointing autumn, colour wise.  I haven't taking any photos.
It is getting darker much earlier now and it will soon be time to put the clocks back to standard time  Then we can snuggle in out personal dens and stay comfortable and warm.
I got a nice surprise on the weekend when I discovered that I had won an award for having the most points in the needlework category at our fair.  First time that has happened.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Sale! Sale! Sale!

Craft Supplies on sale now at Craftsy.

JPEG Image

Now is the time to gear up for holiday gift-making! For a limited time, Craftsy has discounted all craft supplies up to 70% off. Get started on gift-making with fun project kits and more here:   
'Pre-Holiday Stock Up Sale' with up to 70% off all supplies! This includes project kits, yarn, fabric, art supplies, cake decorating / baking supplies and paper craft supplies.                    

Sale ends Oct. 13th so order now.                  


Thursday, October 8, 2015

Giant Beets

I expect the streets were quieter than usual in Canada today as we all watched the first Blue Jays play
off game.  Unfortunately, they lost but there is great hopes for tomorrows game.
While I listened to the play by play on my computer, I finished the top I was working on.  It has turned out well and will make a cheerful addition to someone's home.

I pulled and cooked the last of my beets today and thought you might be interested in seeing how big some of them were.  That is a teaspoon laying beside this one.  Don't need many of that size to make a batch of pickled beets.  That is on tomorrows schedule.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Sewing Marathon

With the exception of preparing and eating meals and taking the dog for a walk, I have been sewing since ten o'clock this morning.  I should be finished this top tomorrow.  I am not going to quilt it right away as I have two more tops to finish. 
It is both tiring and fun having a non-stop sewing session.  I did make sure I spent as much time standing as sitting which is both healthier and less tiring  It was a lovely day so I am gad I did get outside.  I really should have pulled the beets but they will be alright for a bit longer.
Here is one of the blocks I was making:
The pattern is designed by Isobel Meekins and it is both detailed and easy to follow.
I think I will turn everything off now, make myself a cup of herbal tea and watch a bit of television with hubby.  Of course, I will continue quilting but this will be on my hand applique.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015


I have been on a virtual retreat since Sunday afternoon.  I haven't been able to spend as much time with the other VR participants as I would like as I have been quite busy.  I think I am caught up on all the house stuff-tomatoes finished, chickens delivered, stew put in containers and into the freezer.  We took our meat birds to the butchers yesterday and then picked them up after supper.  today, those that placed orders, got their deliveries.  It is hard getting everyone, including our, schedules  co ordinated.  One lady also wanted a dozen eggs and I forgot them and had to go back into the village later to deliver them.
I have got some of the blocks pieced on the VR quilt and hope to get that finished tomorrow.  I will post that so you can see it.
Virtual Retreats are fun as you can stay home but still join in chats, draws and working on quilting.
Just dashing out the door again so will have to go.

Friday, October 2, 2015

More Years, Less Energy

We brought our new-to us van home yesterday, had a lovely visit with dear friends and did a little shopping.  We were both exhausted when we got home.  It is hard to believe that I used to drive for a living and was often in the vehicle for up to 12 hours a day.  Of course that was a few years ago.  I guess that even if age is just a number it does mean something when it comes to energy.
I made a huge pot of stew this morning and it is simmering away on the woodstove.  There is something about having a wood fire that makes me want to cook. 
I also spent quite a bit of time trimming and squaring the blocks I just made.  It is a tedious job but, if not done, will show in the quality of the finished quilt.  I have changed my mind twice about how I was going to put the blocks together but think I have finally made a decision.
It has been quite windy today and the breeze was cool so t was necessary to wear a jacket outdoors.  Our walk was a bit shorter today as the coat I was wearing wasn't quite warm enough.
Tomorrow we are going to a craft show where all the products are made from nature.  It should be interesting and I may get a few ideas for Christmas.  It will be my first ride in the van, albeit as a passenger.