Monday, August 19, 2019

End of Summer

It seems way too soon for the kids to be heading back to school.  It also doesn't sound right to hear about Labor Day sales on the television and radio.  How can the summer be coming to an end so soon? 

The college grandchildren have started to leave for their schools.  They rest will depart throughout the week.  Some of the younger grandchildren have started back to school this week and the remainder will go back next week.  I'll miss having them around and stopping in all the time.  However, it was a great summer. 

I had some fun fall sewing to do before school started.  A friend of mine is a teacher.  To encourage creative writing with her students, she uses a book titled Letters From Felix.  She has used a pathetic looking "Felix" stuffed rabbit that gets to go home with the children.  I promised her that I would make a new one for her before classes started. 

Felix may have overeaten this summer so he may need to go on a diet this fall, but he is definitely an improvement over the one that was being used.  lol






He even has his own backpack for the start of school (and for carrying his notepad and pencil).



One of the granddaughters stopped over this past week because she wanted to "make a dress".  This was her first dressmaking attempt and I think she did a great job on it.  She loved it and can't wait to come home for Thanksgiving so she can sew some more.



I managed to get my Scrappy Radiant Star quilted.  I'm looking forward to getting the binding on it and having it finished.



It was my block choice for my month of the Gridster Bee.  Each of my beemates included an extra block so the construction of the quilt went quickly.  They were all stars in my book and I included their signature blocks in stars on the back.




Lastly, this week has seen excitement with several of our tortoise eggs hatching.  It's always a fun time to watch the progress.  



Monday, August 12, 2019

Alaska

A trip that we have always wanted to make was a summer cruise to Alaska.  We decided to do it instead of a party to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary.  The best part was we also took our children and their spouses.




The weather for the entire trip was picture perfect and we were told over and over again from the locals how we "nailed" the weather.

We decided to start in Seward, AK and cruise down to Vancouver, Canada.  It was just a dream come true.

I was amazed at the sounds heard while visiting the Hubbard Glacier - the largest in North America.  The sounds of thunder as sections calved, or broke away, and the popping of the ice in the water was something that I never imagined.




We did white water rafting below the Mendenhall Glacier in 33* water.




We saw whales and "rafts" of otters.




There was the historic rail through the Klondike White Pass trail, crab fests and off roading.



There were colorful villages to be seen.



Most of all it was a trip full of laughs and memories with all of our children.  We have been so blessed.





Monday, July 29, 2019

Gridster Bee Blocks

For the month of June, I was the queen bee our Gridster Bee.  It was such fun to see blocks arriving in the mail all month.  Having them all assembled together, I can now show you my finished top.

This was a free block from Wombat Quilts.  In finishing it, I created a border that completed the stars.  My beemates were incredible in that each member made not one, but two blocks each.  The quilt came together so quickly with the additional blocks.

We are now creating blocks for our August queen.  These were such fun to make and I love her block choice.


Friday, July 19, 2019

Another Try

I am excited about posting this new post because I have made some changes in my settings and am eager to see if it has worked.  I created a g-mail account and have heard from several people that they are now receiving my blog comments.  I hope that means that I will also be receiving blog comments.  Fingers crossed here.

My sister who lives in Alaska and I have been working on a secret project for our other sister's special birthday.  It was given to her last evening so I can now show what we have done.  We made her a Temperature quilt using the temperatures, year and location of her birth.  My sister sewed the first six months and I did the last six.  Amazingly, when she sent me her section to add to mine, they fit together perfectly.




The back of the quilt is an incredible wine bottle print and so much fun to read.  The back includes the label and the temperature key.  







The past week found us in the Sierras for our annual fishing trip.  The lakes and streams were so full this year after all of the rains.  Of course, with all of the snow this year, spring blooms are just now happening.  Ski season is still open in Mammoth.  It really was gorgeous.




Our daughter's family has been watching a cocoon for the last few weeks and today their wait paid off.  The little ones were able to watch the whole process.  She sent me the video and I am amazed at how quickly it happened.  Nature is incredible!



Friday, July 5, 2019

July!

June is now only a memory.  July has arrived.  I didn't get one post done in the entire month.  I have contemplated giving up my blog with the changes Blogger made.  I enjoy blogging and I really love the rapport between bloggers.  Many "friends" have followed me for years, and I them.  Without getting notice in my inbox of incoming comments, it has become so time consuming to reply to them.  Maria has sent me e-mails with all sorts of hints for settings, etc.  Nothing I seem to do will change the situation.  I can only see comments if I sign in to my account and may times I cannot retrieve an e-mail address to reply.  I just do not feel it is right to not reply to all of the kind comments that I receive.  Thus, Blogger has been a thorn in my side when life is busy.

I haven't accomplished a lot of sewing for the month.  I have one near finish that I will show when I get done, but my fun quilting this month was receiving the blocks from my bee mates.  June was my month to be queen bee and it was great to see exciting mail arrive along with all the adds.  The block that I selected for my month was a freebie found HERE.  I made out a master plan and mailed it to my beemates.  Although I only expected one block from each, every person did TWO blocks!  Our Gridster Bee has been an amazing group of gals.  My blocks finish at 12" so the quilt went together quickly.  This is where I was earlier this week.


July means there is a new queen and these are her blocks.  I love all the scrappy goodness.



The beginning of June was for family celebrations.  Our children took us out for a day of surprises, end with a lovely dinner for our 50th anniversary.


The same weekend we celebrated the wedding of our eldest granddaughter.   This is a phot of our son and his family.


What would summer be without preserving?  The apricots, nectarines, peaches and plums have produced a massive crop this year.  I have been lucky to have these two delightful helpers to assist with canning.  We have done it together for so many years and I am sure they could do it without any guidance, but we so enjoy our canning days together.  One day we just baked without canning.  Their favorite was a Nectarine Vanilla Bean Scone.



We've also spent many hours at baseball fields and equestrian cross country meets.


There was also Father's Day and a well deserved celebration for the six great fathers in our family.


Finally there was July 4th.  We had around 80 people this year for the festivities - lots of great food and laughs.  I didn't get many pictures so I hope others have some to share.


Wednesday, May 29, 2019

The Arrival of June

How can it be?  The midpoint of the year is just around the corner.  I guess it's time to start Christmas shopping.

Before May slips away, however, we celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary!  It seems like only yesterday that we were walking down the aisle, saying our "I do's" and starting our new life together.  I'd do it all again in a moment.  It has been a fabulous fifty years.

Now, fifty years later, our eldest granddaughter will be walking down the aisle and starting her new life as a wife.  It has been a busy few weeks of preparation for it.  I've altered three bridesmaid dresses, made the veil and the flower girl dress, all fun and creative sewing.




June is my month as the bee queen in our Gridster Bee.  The block I have chosen is called Star String and is found at Wombat Quilts.  My first blocks arrived from Nancy (IG @patchworkbreeze).  From the looks of these, this is going to be such a fun month.



More non quilting sewing included making a linen stole for a dear priest friend of ours who is celebrating his Silver Jubilee next week.  I wanted to use the metallic threads in the embroidery machine, but I know how difficult they can be, especially at high speeds.  I used the Superior metallic threads and I had NO problem at all with them.  I have used them in quilting with great success too. If you haven't used them before, I highly recommend them.




I actually made it reversible so he can use it when he celebrates his Golden Jubilee.  The front side is in silver and the back is in gold.  It has been a standing joke between us so I am sure he will get a chuckle when he sees it.



I did manage to finish the last three blocks for the BlooM SAL.  Hopefully, I will have time to get the sashing sewn in place and get them all sewn together soon.



The month of May has been so unseasonably cold for us, but some of the spring growth continues in the garden.  The epiphylliums are blooming and are always showstoppers.





A pineapple has set in the pineapple garden too.  This plant is about three years old now.  I start my plants by using the tops of the pineapples that we eat.


Momma tortoise laid her eggs despite the cold weather.


A final picture...….I was at our daughter's home watching the little ones earlier this week.  This little guy had no fear of the vacuum and loved to have the girls use it on him.