Friday, April 30, 2010

Some Random Thoughts

I appreciate the lovely comments left here, and on Facebook and my email from everyone regarding my anniversary post. It means so much to me that someone out there is reading!

We are starting to prepare for the big trip to New York in just about 11 days. The airlines are being pretty persnickity about luggage. I've actually give some thought to preparing a "box" of stuff and shipping it to the hotel, and it can be there when we arrive! Might be cheaper than checking another suitcase. I'll have to call the hotel (The Marquis Marriott!!) and see if that is actually doable.

As I was going through the closet, which needs another serious overhaul and cleansing, and I remembered there was a post I wanted to do about shoes....
I pretty much live in my mocs around the house and slip on shoes when we go out or I go to work. We had a wedding to attend and neither of these options was going to work. So I muscled my way to the back of my closet to find some shoes to go with the light pants I intended to wear, thinking surely there is a pair of shoes that will do!!

And I pulled these 4 out! Wishing I had a full length mirror, or one like they have in the shoe store I decided to just try them on and take a photo!

so which ones do you think I chose? Good thing I had had a pedicure that week!!

Lynn is celebrating his 40th anniversary of working for the Boys' and Girls' Clubs tomorrow. He worked for 30 years down south, between Des Moines, Federal Way, Seattle, and Tacoma. After retiring and working in the private sector for about 8 months, he was recruited to come up to Whatcom County. He started here 10 years ago tomorrow. Amazing....He has done such a wonderful job, and is truly looking forward to retiring!! I don't know what in the world I will do with him then!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

April 27, 2010

36 years ago today we were wed. We dated for about 3 years before the wedding, and even dated for a spell in high school. We discovered that we both attended the same summer daycamp program when we were kids. We recalled certain events but didn't remember each other.

The first day of high school when I was a sophomore, Lynn was a junior, I was walking across the gym to get to the locker room for PE and he was sitting on the stage with a friend. I was wearing a red plaid jumper with a white shirt, white kneesocks and a red headband. He remembers that day, maybe even more clearly than I did.

Being the shy guy that he was, he didn't approach me, until the second semester when I signed up to be on the newspaper (Avalanche) staff. We were assigned one day to go out and sell ads, along with a friend Tim, (whom I had a HUGE crush on!). I ofcourse closed more sales than either of them, they both claimed it was the mini skirt!

In May, Lynn said that his Mom had been laid off from Boeing and they were going to move to Boston, where her family was. So in June, when I gave him my annual to sign, I was a bit sad that he was leaving. I told him that he should write something nice, even though I knew he hated me, for selling more ads (I was vote biggest flirt in my senior class, BTW). I didn't happen to read through my annual until a few days after school was out, and I came across his note. After he signed his name he wrote
PS I don't hate you, I love you........

And off to Boston he moved, feeling pretty safe!! However his Mom didn't find a job there either so they moved BACK!!! My junior year, he appears in the cafeteria about the 3rd week of school!!! I taunted him terribly! In those days, the juniors were in charge of organizing the senior prom and I was on the the committee (anyone surprised?). So I kept teasing him about "are you going to the prom?" About 3 weeks before the event, again I caught him in the hall and said ARE YOU GOING? He said yes. I asked who he was taking and he said "You, of course!". So we went to the prom.

This photo was in an album that was
damaged and I had trouble getting it out. I remember buying this dress. I got it at Nordstroms in downtown Seattle. It was $65 which was an atrocious amount of money at the time. But I sure wish I still had it!!
How about those legs!! Too bad you can't see the shoes, which were dyed to match the dress, which also happened to match my eyes.....

My gosh every time I look at Lynn in this photo I see all three boys!

Anyway, he graduated and went onto Highline College. I enjoyed my senior year. And when I registered to go to Highline I signed up for the newspaper knowing he was there. First day of classes, I got a ride with a friend, walked into the class where Lynn was, told him I needed a ride home, and that was it......

We have had some great times in all these years. We have had some struggles. But I think we are over the hump and in it for the long run. He really is my very best friend. We can finish each others sentences, say a phrase and know exactly what the other is referring to. We birthed, raised, loved three boys and love having 3 (soon to be 4) beautiful grandchildren. It is such a blessing watching our children be great parents, and still all be good friends.

I really am looking forward to the next 36.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

QT #4

This was a panel I found which was fun because I have a print of the snow ladies that I had enjoyed putting up for a few years during the holiday. I love that they are quilting. So I did a very easy finish on this and now it just needs to be quilted.

I watched a guy a few years ago on TV talking about his "Square Foot Gardening". I bought the book, built the squares and have used them in my small veggie garden space for about 3 years. This year I decided to concentrate on herbs, and a couple of tomato plants.

At Costco, they had a combination of herbs that I bought, and when I was planting them last weekend, I discovered they had a catnip start. So I thought, why not and planted it.

While enjoying my coffee this morning, I watched with some wondering as Dutch was making his way to the herbs....two nights ago he brought a baby mouse in the house to play with, so my first concern was that he was on the hunt!!!

Still creeping along ever so slowly, poor little target he might be stalking......
Turns out THIS is what he was stalking! Under Rocco is the catnip plant.....I wondered why this cat had been absolutely sacked out on the couch the last few I know! It's kitty POT!!!
Looks like we might have a bit of a struggle over the stash!!!
Thankfully in the end I think they were both two stoned to really care......

Life really is more interesting with cats...

Saturday, April 24, 2010

QT #3 and some catch up

Talk about being and obsessive compulsive quilter/piecer!! These blocks were actually rather fun to do. I had taken a big stack of 8" squares of fabric to a retreat and created these two blocks, put them together and said YEAH! Then it sat for a long time as I tried to decide how to finish it. At some point I guess I made a decision and started adding the green strip and border. The top border isn't even sewn! It was hung on it's hanger with the pins in it! So I guess I best find the other two border pieces and get this puppy done. Manic scrappy it could be called!

Last Saturday I went to the Bellingham farmers market and had hoped to go again today, but the day got away from me. But I thought if I shared a few photos from last week, I could feel like I went again today.

I thought this was pretty clever. You ride the bike which powers the blender so you can make your own smoothie!!

And right next door to that was this
Some amazing cupcakes!!! I'm glad I'm not a sweets person. I did plan to have lunch there and I had a WORLD of options

I love Thai food, but there was no empty places to sit and eat so I thought I'd keep looking.....

I have no idea what Ethiopian food even smelled pretty good, but lets keep looking....

The salads they were making here looking amazing.
Again, looks interesting, but looks like something that requires a place to sit...maybe next time.
Brandywine kitchen had some lovely things, which required the use of silverware. Such smelled goood.

Ah yes, a gyro could be carried and eaten!! But too juicy, I'd get drips on my shirt for sure. Keep going..

Can you believe after all that I ended up with a hot dog from Hemplers!!! LOL! My time was up and I had to get to the car and drive to Fairhaven so I could see the speaker at the book store. They wrapped my dog so I could carry it to the car, where I ate it while I was driving.....and dripped mustard on my shirt......

Monday, April 19, 2010

Have you missed me yet?

LOL! I know Sister Carol has, which is so sweet! I've been having some pretty good days. The photo of me, with my big brother Steven (it has always been Steven, never, ever Steve) kind of shows you how I am feeling! I just about want to burst! But it is all good stuff.

I think a big part is that my shoulder is no longer hurting. I still can't quite tie my apron strings, but I can do everything else and I don't have that chronic pain, which a very big deal.

I've done a few awesome things in the last few days. For the first time in the 10 years since I moved up here, I found my way to the Bellingham Farmers market. And I do mean found! I got what I thought was a lucky parking spot, grabbed my shopping bags and headed up the street. There are some great shops in downtown Bellingham that deserve more exploration. But after window shopping about 4 blocks, I realized that the market was NOT where I was expecting it to be. I called Lynn and he just kept telling me to look for the Bellingham Herald building, which would be fine if I wasn't surrounded by other buildings. So I turned around, headed back towards my car. A happy couple was walking towards me, each with a bag of kettle korn. I figured they must have gotten it at the market, but didn't want to say "where is the farmers market?" so I asked "where did you find kettle korn?" and they kindly pointed me in the direction behind them and said "at the market of course!" so I passed my car and kept walking. Another 4 blocks that direction and VOILA!

It was great! I'm planning to be a regular visitor. I took some great photos and will post them here in the next few days. I was watching my time very closely because I was heading to Fairhaven (our "University District") to Village Books for a presentation by an author I have always enjoyed. Again, I have noticed in the newspaper that other authors I like have been there, but I never actually made it, but this time I was determined! Jennifer Chiaverini writes a series of books about a group of quilters who open a lovely quilting retreat. She has written 16 books connected to this theme and I have enjoyed them all. She was a great speaker, and I felt a bit embarassed that I was one of only about a dozen people who was there. And two of those were her Mom and Grandmom! I did buy the newest book and had her sign it for me. Those of you who know me, know that I NEVER pay full price for a book, but this time I did. Another first for me - LOL!

Then I wandered up the street and went into the Wool Station and got a new book, some lovely yarn and the beginning of a new project. I'll show you more of that as I get it started!

That's it for now! I'm using some of my bursting out energy cleaning carpets today!

Friday, April 16, 2010

And now for something totally different

I'll be counting down rather than counting up for a brief period.....I have 26, TWENTY SIX, days until I fly to New York for 4 days, followed by a nice drive upstate New York and 3 days in Cooperstown. After much contemplation, consideration, complaining, compensating, coercing, I absolutely, positively have got to lose a few pounds and get in better shape for walking around and enjoying my trip. Not to mention making the flying part a bit more comfortable, for those few short commuter flights where I'm not in first class.
So today, I went to the gym...yep! Did some cardio and some lower body weight training. Came home exhausted, and with jelly legs. Those of you who have experienced that know just what I mean! And then after a couple of hours at home, I popped in the Biggest Loser Quick Start DVD and did 10 minutes of cardio with that. No excuses, no more delay. Sister Carol has been going to the fitness center at the hospital where she works and has been pretty diligent about going every other day. She jokes about the generic work out buddies, who regardless of having to have an oxygen tank with them, are still working out!
Please bear with me here, as I take this flying leap off the computer chair!! I'll keep you posted as I find the energy to do so.

QT #2 - along with other tidbits

Definitely a work in progress. I had made all these blocks, and then played with them until I came up with this layout. I am going to finish off the half blocks on the outside and then contemplate any kind of border. Love using up some novelty print squares.

Last night was Jillian's second grade music concert. I love that they learn and perform old folk tunes. Kind of like learning all those old Christmas carols...they need to stick around forever, IMHO. Ethan wasn't so sure he was going to participate next year when he is in kindergarten....oh my, is he going to be shy? I don't know how I will handle that!
This is a flowering almond. It was a "free" item at a nursery about 6 years ago. Not much more than a stick, but it was free, so I stuck it in the ground! I've had a blossom or two in years past, and then I cut it off and this year I was rewarded with an odd shaped, though pretty little burst of pink!

It's so nice to see this tree next to the garage recover. About 5 years ago, our 80 some year old neighbor asked Lynn is he would cut this tree down, as he (the neighbor) didn't like when those pesky blossoms landed in his yard. Lynn asked me about it and I said absolutely not!!! I LOVE that tree, and the blossoms are easy, they blow away, or can be raked or vacuumed, which I was willing to do if they were so troublesome for him. The next year, just as the tree was ready to bloom, my son happened by and found neighbor octogenarian up on a ladder cutting branches that were hanging over the property line. The good news was that he didn't fall, the bad news was that my tree was so misformed I just cried. The headscratching part was, did he really think the rest of the blossoms were going to learn their lesson and not dare fall into his yard???? The neighbor has since moved to assisted living, and actually passed away two years ago. The house still sits vacant. But my tree is recovering...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

And the winner is.......

Robin in Leavenworth!!!! Send me your land address and I'll get your prize off to you ASAP.
Thank you all again for playing along.

QT #1

Did you miss me yesterday? Shocker that my sister who is NOT a quilter called me this morning a bit concerned that I didn't post yesterday. I thought that after 100, I would take a day off and recalibrate. So today I am starting with QT#1. So this is a quilt top. These will be in varying states of finishedness.....(sounds better than a UFO). This one is quite holiday like, so I'm waiting to find just the perfect border. I like the asymmetrical look. Pretty simple, but will be fun to practice my new free motion quilting skills on!

I will still keep my quilts coming in the same sequential order, just FYI. The drawing for the winner of a table runner will be done tonight after Lynn gets home. I've put all the names down and numbered them and he will pick a number and that will be our winner!! Thank you all so much for coming along on my quilting/photo journey.

Speaking of my sister.....this is sister Carol. When I went to visit for her birthday last month, I finally taught her the basics of knitting. Her dog Megan isn't so sure she likes this idea.....

I came across another bag that I had knit and felted a couple of years ago. This one still needs to have handles, just haven't decided what kind I would like to use. This was a great project to use up some bits of a lovely wool, along with some novelties.

Isn't that fun? I'm just about done with my current bag and hope to felt it this weekend. I'll show some before/after photos of that process.

It's Wednesday night, who is going home on AI tonight? I'm guessing/hoping Andrew and Katie. Crystal is my fave with Lee right behind her. Yes, I'm an Idol fan.....

Monday, April 12, 2010

April 12th - #100 - WOW!!

I can hardly believe that I am up to quilt photo #100. To celebrate, I'm having a giveaway, a drawing for one of my table runners, similar to the one on yesterday's post. Thank you to the girls who have commented, you will be in the drawing, as well as anyone who comments today, or becomes a follower, or recommends my blog to a friend who becomes a follower.

This quilt is one that I finished at the retreat I just attended. The body of this quilt was done about 3 years ago, and then it all sat in a large ziplock bag with the red and blue for the border. So I just needed to create and attach the border. Isn't it cool???? I love the things that come from the tri rec rulers. This one moved to the top of the list of things to have quilted.

The retreat was splendid! I didn't take as many photos as I always intend to. But I got a few. First I want to show you the view from my seat.

Isn't that amazing? We had quite a windstorm the first night, and I always sleep with my window open. At one point of the night I thought I was hearing the waves. Hearing it crash in and go out, in and go out, then it came in, went out and didn't come back in!!! I thought OMG, it's a sunami!!! And then I realized it was probably just the wind in the trees. Funny how your mind plays those tricks on you...

We had a wonderful visitor one day

My son brought Carter over for a visit, and run around the field. He loved this room that had all that brilliant fabric in it, from a vendor who brought it for us to shop from! It was great watching him fondle some of the fabric.

Thank you again, for stopping by. And don't forget to leave a message or send me an email if you would like to be in my giveaway drawing.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

April 11th - #99 AND Giveaway details

Surprise!!! Another one of these! this time in Christmas prints.

Today I am on my way home after my great retreat time away. And tomorrow is my 100th day of posting quilting photos.

My GIVEAWAY will be one of these great table runners, since I know you have seen it so many times, you would love to have one! The "theme" will be a suprise.

How to enter? Tomorrow, on my 100th day, leave a note for me on the blog and you will get one chance. Have a friend join the "followers" group for my blog and you will get two more chances. Just have them leave a note, telling me You sent them, and they will get a chance too.

If we get 10 new followers I'll give away two of them!! This should be fun.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

April 10th - #98

LOL! I know this looks familiar, but it is using different prints than the last one I showed. This is the April piece that is out on the chair on my front porch. Why just tell you when I can show you????

I found those old wooden folding chairs at a garden shop several years ago and I've never regretted buying them! I love finding outside stuff to add to the yard and garden.

One of my favorite movie characters was the Aunt on Twister. She had a very eclectic collection of yard art and spinning things! I'm pretty bad already, I have to sneak in a new wind chime when I find one. A few weeks ago I found this cute little wagon wind chime at a restaurant gift shop in Centralia. Isn't it cute????

By the time you read this post, I'll have been on my retreat for 3+ days. I wonder what I will have accomplished....hopefully lots of laughs! And maybe a bit of sewing!

Friday, April 9, 2010

April 9th - #97

This was another one of my "fractured, blended, mended" pieces. One of the nice things about this kind of project is that you get to practice all kinds of free motion quilting. In fact, I taught a quilting class with this project to encourage women to "let go and let it flow" in trying free motion quilting on their small projects. I used a variegated thread on this one and each square has a different stitch.

This was fun too, as you zigzag the blocks together and the project is done.

This one will go over the porch chair for the month of July.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

April 8th - #96

Do you have your sunglasses handy??? I made this top while at a Leavenworth retreat a few summers ago. Actually I wanted to make SOMETHING using this border and found this quilt called Ranchers Daughter somewhere, I forget where. It's pretty wild, but I think once it is quilted it will "settle" a bit - LOL!

I think this one might get to go to an auction.
Speaking of which, my husband pretty much FORCED me to choose quilt for the Bellingham auction which is next weekend. He indicated he would choose one while I was gone on my retreat, if I didn't pick one. It is a lot harder to part with these than I wanted. A few I could donate, but they weren't quite up to snuff for one reason or another, my opinion. I tried to copy and paste the quilt I gave him, but it didn't want to work. If you look back, it is the one from January 28th. I was actually tearful as he carried it out the door, what is with that????? I guess I wasn't ready for it to go, but I'll survive. That one was quilted by Sally Howard, and credit will be given to her on the auction description. Thanks Sally.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

April 7th - #95

How is that for wild!! This was another quilt I had done as a sample when I was teaching a beginning rotary cutting and quilting class. I love teaching half square triangles. I've done presentations at a couple of guilds in all the different techniques and tips and rulers and so forth to make this very basic quilting building block. I think once they have mastered this piece, they can feel a lot more confident. There are also flying geese in here. This one I just finished quilting myself (gasp!!) and it is going to my retreat to get a binding. I'm thinking the black....goodness, it makes my heart pump looking at all the action!!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Tuesday April 6th - #94

This is the HUGEST thing I have ever assembled. I wanted a quilt for my new king sized bed, but not anything too busy or flowery. I wish the values had been a little bit greater in the the two overlapping rectangles, one is green, one is purple. I have not had this one quilted yet, as you can see, it is just laying over the existing comforter for the photo. I have a bit of a side view too

It's pretty simple, but it is the look I wanted. Is going to be kinda spendy for the quilting, since it is so big! But I will get it done this year.

Today is the day I am packing up for my retreat. I'm actually driving south tonight after we have our celebration dinner with Todd for his birthday last week.

Here he is the day after his birthday with my granddog Laila. He came to pressure wash the barbecue and the patio. He has his own lawn maintenance business, he is the Lawn Ranger. Been doing that now for 5 years. He also plays in 3 different bands as the drummer. His main band - Spaceband, plays very regularly in Bellingham and now plays at a casino down south every 6 weeks. They are pretty well known, especially with the college crowd.

I best get packing!!

Monday, April 5, 2010

April 5th - #93

Happy Monday! What a great day for working in the garden. Took some time out though to get some photos for my blog. And thanks to my friend JoAnni I am going to be able to keep my photos going for you, even though I'll be gone and enjoying myself with 18 other wonderful quilters for 5 whole days!!

This piece was another fun, easy project. I had again, a collection of 9 patch blocks. And I had ordered a bunch of this little green bee fabric, so I thought, let's put them together! This is one of the projects I'm taking to the retreat to actually quilt it, so it will be ready to be gifted.

I thought I would also show an update on my current CCS projects. First is the one I showed two other progress photos of, which you are welcome to scroll back and see
I'm working on the tulips on the left, and there is a grapevine wreath behind them. Also to be added are three gardening tools hanging to the right of the seed sign. And the "H" for the the word choice is to be put in with a back stitch.

I've told the story of my cross stitch loss, but this next one somehow survived.....I must have had it tucked in a bag that I was carrying at the time.

It is from a Charles Wysocki print. The detail on this piece is amazing. Right now I'm working from the upper right hand corner to fill in the top bit. I think it is so cool, and will look forward to getting it finished and framed.

We had a lovely visit on Easter at my brother's house. I was able to share the next batch of childhood slides that I had transferred onto DVD. My parents really enjoyed it, there were even photos from their honeymoon. I still have about 100 slides being copied now, and should be ready in about 2 more weeks. Then I'll be able to create a nice "movie" with music and narration, is my plan.

OH! In celebration of my upcoming 100th consecutive post of quilt photos, I'm going to have a giveaway!!! Details will follow. I'm hoping we can increase my number of followers and then the giveaway will be even better!!!