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Saturday, January 6, 2018

Hourglass blocks and more!

In an effort to be a better blogger (and quilter!) I'm posting my progress for you to look at of my green border on the hourglass quilt I'm working on.  In case you don't know, this was a leader/ender project that Bonnie Hunter posted a few years ago.  Ok, so I'm a few years behind... What else is new!! ;-)

I'm happy to say that it's too large for my design wall so it's now on the floor!  I've been using both the accuquilt and my companion ruler.  I find that when I cut them individually, there is a little more wiggle room;  the accuquilt dies cut them very exact, which doesn't allow for much extra.  Some of them were too small. ;-((



After the green, there's a row of neutrals and then I'm doing purples!! They are all brights.  Kind of fun!!

Hope you're having a great (and warm) weekend!

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Baskets done~

Look at me. I'm on a roll.  Three posts in 3 days!  We'll see how long that lasts!!  We don't have the grandkids this coming weekend so I'm hoping I'll get some sewing done... and maybe even a little clean up of the sewing disaster room! More hourglass blocks are in the forecast too... I'm hoping to get it done soon!

I am going to do Cécile's basket sew a long this year.  Last year I did their log cabin one and had a blast.  It's great because the only rule is that you have to make a certain number.  I like that freedom.  I'm going to do mine in different sizes and then play with putting them together.  I like that I can make one in a short time and call it DONE!!

I started with 5" ones;  I have a great little pattern for a 10" block so I'm thinking 4 of the little guys next to a big one!  Or maybe sashing in between?  Years ago I made one of my all-time favorite quilts which is a basket sampler after a week long class I took at Asilomar with Alex Anderson.  I have it hanging in our cabin in Oregon.  I'll take a picture next time I'm up there (in two weeks).  It is a great quilt, if I do say so myself.






Hope you are all staying safe and warm. Looks really cold and snowy in the East.  We finally got some rain in California!

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

I'm a STAR... well , not really

For those of you following along with the ModaBlockheads quilt, today's quilt is about ME!! It's a barrister's block.  Get the pattern here.  I've done about maybe 3 or 4 of the blocks but I've been collecting them and intend to make it!

And I'm also going to do the basket quilt with Cécile.  I think that Béa will not be joining in but her name is part of the title!!   I love basket blocks so I'm going to make a couple today!

Thank you for those who commented on my new assistant, Ryan's, sewing!

Hope you're having a great first week of January!!!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

A new quilter !!

Happy New Year!  We spent a week up at our cabin in Oregon and just about the only sewing I did was to get the adorable table runner done.  Remember I bought the fabric kit from the LQS before I left?  I did get this done and actually tried the free-motion quilting on the Juki.  I was quite pleased with how nicely the machine handled.  hmmm.. Now to do that more often!  Aren't these fabrics adorable!!


I also worked on my scrappy hourglass quilt.  I got another round done and was very pleased with it.  It's a lot of fun but definitely takes a long time to go all the way around!  My blocks finish at 3".  My next round is bright green!




I also gifted a quilt to a friend who lives near us in Oregon.  She and her husband had never received a quilt before so they were delighted. She is obviously NOT a quilter! vbg  This was a quilt I made several years ago but hadn't been using.  it is a very simple quilt to make and went together pretty quickly.  It's great to gift something like that to someone who will appreciate it!



I wanted to show you just the little bit of snow we had in Sunriver.  Here is a picture of our front yard and Mt. Bachelor.  The snow was gone by the time we left on Friday to head back to California. So different than last year!  I will admit that I slipped on the ice our first night (taking Max out) and landed right on my arse.  OUCH.





My grandkids came for the weekend and I decided that little Emma needed a bag to transport her toys.  She has a collection of plastic animals that she brings back and forth (you don't want to hear about the time that I left the bag at her house!!).  This time my daughter packed them in a brown grocery bag.  That just won't do.  So I went through my stash and found this adorable castle fabric I bought some years ago.  Ok, I did go and buy some go-withs.  What was so great was that all 3 kids wanted in on the sewing.  I propped the foot pedal onto a little stool and set them one by one in a chair next to me to press the foot pedal as well as the scissor button.  Gotta love my Juki


My 8 yr old grandson decided he really wanted to do more so I figured he was old enough to have a go in front of the machine.  He had a ball!  You may notice he's wearing necklaces and bracelets.  What can I say?  He likes to wear my jewelry when he comes over and I see no reason to dissuade him.  Know what I mean?  At least he feels free at our house to do what he wants to do.  He also loves to cook!  That might explain why the kids hate leaving our house!


Here are the sides of the bag;  I even sewed Emma's name in one spot, which turned out to be at the bottom... oops.




Thanks to everyone who sent me such sweet comments about my mom. She turns 90 tomorrow and is itching to get back to her own home.  I'm making sure she's strong enough so she is staying in the board and care home at least until the end of January.  From then on, I don't know what will happen. She has an appointment at the memory care facility next week;  and a social worker is meeting me this week to evaluate her home for changes to make it safer.  I will be trying to arrange for caregivers to come and help her;  it remains to be seen how many hours she'll need help.

Happy New Year to everyone.  I hope you enjoyed a joyous holiday season and are welcoming the new year with open arms.  I never make resolutions; I just always try to be a better person and do better!  I wish you all good things and especially health and happiness!



Thursday, December 21, 2017

Warm greetings

it's the weekend before Christmas and I figure that a lot of people are out shopping for last minute gifts.  I have to tell you it's one of the best things about being Jewish!! You don't have to get caught up in that frenzy.  VBG

We celebrated the 8 nights of Chanukah, ending on Tuesday.  We had our grandkids over the weekend and per our tradition, gave each one a small gift each night.  It was very special to us to have them to share our holiday.  They have a Christmas tree at their house so it's nice for them to experience the other alternative.  Each one gets their own menorah with candles to light.  They enjoyed it.



For those of you who sent me such sweet notes regarding my mother, I am eternally grateful to you for your thoughts and prayers.  She's doing much better.  It's pretty amazing, to me, that a woman of nearly 90 can survive a serious bout with pneumonia!  She is getting stronger every day at the board and care home and I'm hoping in a month or so, she'll be able to return to her own home with care in home.  Thank you again from the bottom of my heart.  It meant so much to me to read your own similar experiences.

Shall we tour a little touring??

I promised more pictures from New Zealand.  Here were some pictures I took in the caves we visited, which are really quite old.   They were also extremely deep!
 

Our next adventure was to go for a hike in Tongariro National Park.  It was beautiful.  We hiked to a falls that was pretty dramatic.  Don't forget that the seasons there are reversed.  We were there for the first day of summer!




Our next stop was to another set of water falls, but the drama was the horizontal variety!


We then visited a dam both before and after the water was released.  Amazing difference!  First one is before the water was released. Second one was after, same exact spot!




There are more pictures to follow.

On a quilting note, I have been working on the quarter square triangle quilt that Bonnie Hunter posted previously as a leader/ender project.  I'm enjoying it a lot.  Doesn't take a lot of brain power!  And I can work on it in very small increments, which is all the time I've been having.


I read on a Facebook post today that small LQS owners are feeling a pinch this season so I felt compelled to visit the new shop that opened near me.  I didn't need anything but I did spend a bit and bought a kit for a table runner which I thought I'd make next year for my daughter... it was 40% off.  How can you pass that up??  A little different than the usual Christmas fabric!


My husband and I are heading up to Oregon tomorrow for the next week to enjoy the holiday in the winterscape up there!~  

I hope everyone has an enjoyable, loving holiday filled with all good things.  I want to echo my dear friend Wendy Reed's words and wish you all a very peaceful holiday.  Hold your health, friends, loved ones and good fortune very dear to you.  We are so blessed with whatever we have.

Much love to you all,
Thank you for your support and friendship!  

Friday, December 15, 2017

Traveling there and back

I promised I'd send you hints of my whereabouts but we got so busy with our trip that I never had a chance.  And then we had to return early (more about that later, but dealing with elderly mother's serious medical issues).

We had a great trip.  If I have already sent you an email, please don't "guess" since you already know!


This was a building adjacent to a restaurant we found.




This building is a very tall (obviously) structure.


Another significant building.  This one is a ferry building.  Hint: we were near water!


This one is a give-away.  I saw this on a building as we were driving...


I did see a bit of things that reminded me of quilt patterns.  This was on a walkway alongside the harbor!


Here is some information about the walkway!  Maori culture was everywhere!



Islands everywhere!  This was taken on Waiheke Island, which was where we went on our first full day in New Zealand.  We took a 45 minute ferry ride (imagine that as your commute to work!) to this beautiful island where we went touring around and tasted wine.  We found some beautiful areas and were treated to our tour by someone who has lived there for many years.  Nothing like a native to show you around!  This was from the ferry leaving the island for our return trip back to Auckland.



My traveling will be scaled back quite a bit as my mom developed pneumonia just after we left.  She was hospitalized for 10 days and I just moved her into a board and care home where she is receiving excellent, very attentive care.  The shock is the transition:  my mom was completely independent and healthy (just about 90 yrs old), swimming regularly, walking, driving, living on her own etc.  Now she's being taken care of, her memory is gone, she's wearing a diaper and struggles to move around.

I know many of you have had to deal with elderly parents--I think it's a curse of the new generation.  People are living so much longer but not necessarily with a quality of life that anyone would want.

I am taking it day by day--hopefully because she was so healthy, she'll recover but I'm not honestly optimistic.  I'm going to start to look at care for her after her release in a month or two.  But with a very limited budget, it'll be a challenge.

Best wishes to all of you during this holiday season.  We really believe that we need to cherish every day, which is why we have been traveling so much.  Who knows what awaits us?  Sorry to be so philosophical... I promise this will be it.  Cherish it all!

More travel pictures and even some sewing to share!

Love to you all,
xxxxs,
Randy

Sunday, November 26, 2017

I lost three weeks!!!

I can't believe it's been almost three weeks since I last posted. How did that happen??

Well, I had a small vacation that took 10 days;  I had my grandkids both before and after.  And there you are... three weeks gone.

I have done almost no sewing but I did promise to send you pictures of the darling little bee mug rug I made for my friend.  The front was made using a modified log cabin pattern.  It seems that bee fabric is quite the rage these days.  I bought most of this fabric in Sisters last summer.



The back was a panel:  I mean the whole thing was maybe 4".


Here are some pictures from my travels, since I seem to be better at traveling than sewing!! ;-)






Check out these shoes we saw... Couldn't imagine walking on them, can you?




Do you like orchids?  Check out these colors!



Ever seen turtles looking like this?


My friend and I went hiking and found this very secluded rock waterfall



Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday;  it's when I have all my kids together in one place!  This year we also had my brother visiting, which was a treat.  I hadn't seen him in several years.

Here is a fabulous shot (I think) of me with 3 of my 4 grandchildren.
 

And here are my 3 adults (well, mostly) kids with their two spouses:

My two daughters are the left and center girls in black;  my son is back right in blue t-shirt.  My daughter's husband is always joking around.

Lastly,fall has come to Northern California.  I love the fall colors and have many trees that change colors!  This is one of my favorites, a Japanese Maple, by my front porch! 

Not to be gathering moss around my feet, my dh and I are leaving tonight on a two week bucket-list trip... I'll try to post some pictures and definitely leave some clues for you to figure out my whereabouts.  Let me start out by saying that it's about a 13 hr flight!  And I'm not going to Paris.

Hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving.  We do have so much to be thankful for, regardless of our station in life.