Sunset - June 2, 2020

Sunset - June 2, 2020

Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Tisket...A Tasket

Come along and see some beautiful baskets...

It has been a busy week with out of town company - more about that in the next posting. One of the things we did was take our friends to the Leigh-Yawkey Woodson Art Museum. It is probably most famous for its Birds In Art. But another collection always draws visitors who are entranced with the forms and colors. So, let's take a look together...I hope you enjoy!

These exquisite pieces of glasswork are on permanent display at the Museum.

I will let the photos take you on each one to enlarge!

One of Dale Chihuly's pieces is part of the collection

I will be back soon with more images from our week.

Pat - And wishing all the good people of Canada a Happy Canada Day!!!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Sewing Needle vs. Trowel...

Looking back over my recent posts, it has been a long time since anything substantially "quilty" has been shared. Probably because garden trowels, seed packets and work gloves have been a major part of each day.

It has also been ages since any finished quilt has been shared and sad to say, it is going to be a while before that happens. But today, allow me a break from the gardens and let's talk quilting. While visiting other blogs, I have come down with a case of "finish envy." Judy over at Shade Tree Quilting has been setting land-speed records with her completed quilts and Kathy at Inspired By Antique Quilts - well - I don't think she ever sleeps and is always sharing her newest creations. Be sure to visit some of the other quilty blogs on my sidebar to the right...have added a few more lately, mostly applique, Civil War, reproduction quilt lovers, like myself. 

So what has been going on in the sewing room...mostly a mess! But I pledged a while back to Showing the Process. Making slow progress on my Canadian Rose Summer quilt (and here it is mid June- was supposed to be on our bed by now!)
Looks washed out - hard to photograph.
Lots of 1/2 square triangles being made - and these are finished to 2 3/8" so have to piece them the old fashioned way - 2 triangles at a time and just keep feeding them through chain-piecing. About 192 of this particular size.
Also have started strip piecing my 1" reds & greens with the shirting background - using this stack of reds and greens 
and need a whole bunch of little nine-patch variations to make this quilt...they will finish to 1 1/2".
From left to right #1 - need 288/ #2 - need 214/#3 need 191
Only need to make 287/213/190 more...and since I have all the other shirting squares and rectangles cut - it won't take long at my dreams...

And still keeping up with Barbara Brackman's Civil War Quilt weekly blocks. 
These are from the last 2 weeks - # 24 & #25.

And in the quiet evening hours, I continue to do applique on the Beyond the Cherry Tree focused on this project - it is one of those that has "taken on a life of it's own." Another block has been completed (still undecided about the embroidered stems - have done half way around and will sit on the rest for awhile) and I am prepping the next one - I dream of cherries constantly!
 This is my favorite light box to use for transferring patterns - it is an old paper testing box from Weyerhaeuser. They used to do quality control testing on new paper runs and when it became obsolete they were literally getting ready to throw it out...Mr. Outback rescued it and put it on top of an old desk in our basement. It weighs a ton and is huge...I love it!!
I will close for today with something my friend, Connie, made for me...isn't this the cutest tea towel? Love the watering can, love the colors and love the ruffle! Anyone even thinking of using it to dry dishes in this house is in big trouble...
Thanks so much for dropping by today and sharing this little bit of quilting time with me. I so enjoy your company! Have a great week and keep those creative hands busy...


PS - Our Mr. Bear dropped by a few days ago - he says "howdy."
The bluebird house is about 5 feet from ground level. Mr. Bear is a nice size.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

"I" Is For Instantly!

We live in a world where so much is available "instantly" - we can send a message, drink instant coffee (though why would someone want to?), fix instant oatmeal, buy anything online, or even break someone's heart in an instant with one wrong word.

Today's post for Miss Jenny's Alphabe-Thursday is for the letter "I."

This arrived in the mail late last week and caught my eye Instantly!
A product Guaranteed  to make you look younger Instantly. Just apply to your wrinkles and they Instantly disappear...amazing! However, the fine print on the package reveals - it takes more like 90 seconds to work its magic. At 67, 90 seconds can be significant. After all, every moment counts when the clock is ticking...

Another dilemma presents you see the size of the trial package they include? 
 Now I have to ask far will that little packet go? Rather than making Wrinkles (plural) disappear, I would have to choose exactly which wrinkle I want to vanish...I mean I have a number of them as befitting someone my age. Each one has a definite place and gives me character. Whichever one I choose to vanish, will it throw my whole alignment out? I mean they are quite well balanced, thank you. And everyone has been earned - well earned. I deserve them.
While on a shopping expedition earlier today, I was walking through the cosmetic department of a major department store. What caught my eye was a huge display showing neatly boxed tubes of some sort of cream...The advertising sign would bring anyone to a halt..."De-Aging Solution." When I continued on and met with my stitching group, my friends were quite intrigued and one of the ladies asked if we could get it in large quantities, like Sheep Dip. We wondered if it was also a product that produced results Instantly. 

For now I will keep the wrinkles and pass on the De-Aging Solution  and concentrate on something else that might be done snapping my fingers and the entire house is clean and orderly. I'll be looking for a flyer in the mail that tells me how to do that.

Be sure to stop by all the other "I" posts over Alphabe-Thursday. 

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sunday - A Day of Rest?

How do you take your Sundays? The traditional way - Church and family dinners together? Lingering over a leisurely breakfast and an extra cup of coffee along with a thick newspaper filled with ads and funnies? I was brought up to think Sunday was meant to be a day of rest. My Mom has told me that when she was growing up in a large family on the farm, Grandpa would not even permit embroidery work on Sunday's - it was the Lord's Day and should be observed as such. But this is the 21st Century and we have left behind many of the old traditions. 

On this particular Sunday, my Grandpa would have no doubt given me a stern look and perhaps a little lecture as I stood in front of him with downcast eyes and a dripping paint brush in my hand. He would not have been interested in my excuse that we live in Wisconsin where summers consist of basically 2 months - 3 if we are lucky. June can be tricky in this part of the world...this past week is a perfect example. We started out last Monday with temperatures well into the upper 80's and low 90's. Late in the week, we dropped to 50 degrees...a difference of 40 degrees from the previous day. The 1 1/2 yards of mulch we hauled in the utility trailer sat until cool weather arrived and on Thursday, wearing jeans and a heavy sweatshirt, I proceeded to distribute said 1 1/2 yards throughout the front garden. Crossed that off my to do list...and now we have arrived at the weekend, which includes Sunday. Off in the distance on the other side of the pond, Mr. Outback did some repair work on our bridge. You can barely see him through all the new shore growth (a nicer sounding phrase than "weeds.")

So with Time being of the essence and with Grandpa's disapproval from above, I hauled out the painting equipment and the ladder.

I must admit to a sense of accomplishment (coupled with some guilt, however)...look how nice the North wall of my potting shed looks...
 The log siding was in dire need of refreshing and I even managed to start on the porch railings. It was a beautiful day to be outside - the little windows in the shed were open and the Public Radio Sunday Morning Classics could be heard coming from the radio inside .....painting while listening to Mozart or the flowing sounds of Ralph Vaughn Williams Symphony #5 in D Major is good for the soul. Painting is also like gardening or quilting to can let your mind wander, reflect, organize or just dream while staying on task. 

Of course, my faithful assistance stayed nearby to lend a helping paw hand...
 And I could keep a close eye on the pots of baby herbs in the "nursery." 
So, I ask you - how can Sunday be a total day of rest when we are blessed with beautiful weather, summer goes much too swiftly and the list of things to paint is growing...
Last summer the rocking chairs were done in neon green and the year before that, the Adirondack chair was covered in lavender paint...that old bench could sure use some brightening up, don't you agree? Hmmm...what color....?

Have a restful week and enjoy the blessings of each day.


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

"H" Is For High Flight...

Dear Miss Jenny - I have been so naughty missing your last 3 classes. Will  you accept my excuse slip that life has been very hectic? So much so, that I am pulling from my old archives to participate in this weeks Alphabe-Thursday for the letter "H". 
For my regular readers, this is a repeat of a most glorious day for me personally and for visitors here for the first time, I hope you enjoy taking this incredible High Flight with me. 

A Footprint in Time…

Do you have a Bucket List? I think everyone reaches a point in their life where they step back, assess where they have been and done and what they would like to do in the future. A while back I created my own little Bucket List (which can be a lot of fun to do, if you haven’t tried it!) Two of the listed items were #1 – return to Alaska and #2 – fly in a float plane and land on a remote lake. Since this is being written in Alaska, that takes care of #1. Today, #2 was realized.
Rust’s Air, based at Lake Hood, Anchorage was my takeoff point. With 9 of us onboard, our pilot, Mark, headed North West and in about an hour, Mt. McKinley was in view. The tallest mountain (20,320 ft.) in North America, it also goes by the name of Denali, The Great One, or The High One. She answers to no one and has lured many to her summit or the National Park farther to the North.
We had been told that depending on weather conditions, we would circle Denali, fly over the Ruth Glacier and if possible, land on a remote glacial lake. It sounded  pretty neat to me. I was not prepared for just how close we would get to this jaw dropping creation.
The sky was a deep crystal blue and our pilot informed us that this day was 1 in 100 for clear viewing. He flew us in and around the peaks with great confidence and ability as all the cameras and camcorders clicked and whirred. First the passengers on the right side had an unobstructed view and then he would gracefully bank the plane  for everyone on the left. I was thrilled with the proximity as we viewed the surrounding areas – glaciers, rocky peaks, below, among and above the cloud layers…it was all so grand. At some point, I began to wonder where the remote lake landing would be…I figured we would head back towards Anchorage and find a little area amongst the spindly black spruce trees that are so prevalent at the lower levels. But as we began to drop down lower near the Ruth Glacier area and the Great Gorge…the engine slowed and we could tell Mark was preparing to come in for a landing…our “remote glacial lake” was indeed just that – high in the mountains in the carved out bowl left by a long ago glacier. The milky grey blue water was like glass as we touched down and everyone on board was grinning from ear to ear. We taxied to the rocky shoreline and were able to get out and walk around -
Each of us just stood for while, trying to take in the total isolation and other worldly feel – and the complete and utter silence.
My own insignificant footprint will disappear with the next storm that moves through, but the memory of stepping onto that shoreline is imprinted in my heart forever.
What an incredible journey....

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Patchwork Days....continued

"Then followed that beautiful season - Summer...
Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light;
And the landscape lay as if newly created in all the 
Freshness of childhood..."
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

What a difference one week can make...we have traveled from late Spring to precious days of early Summer as only June can provide. 
The air is not only filled with a "dreamy and magical light," but when the evening is still, the scent of lilacs drifts in through the open French doors.
Beauty of Moscow lilacs against a dazzling blue sky

Next to my stitching chair sits a tiny crystal vase that holds freshly gathered lily-of-the-valley. 
A bed of these dainties greets visitors as they approach our front porch. They might also be welcomed by one of our many hummers.

Yes, summer is definitely here - at long last.Long days in the gardens have produced raised beds filled with newly planted seeds and transplants longing to be out of their little fiber pots. My little bed of herbs is beginning to settle in after being totally uprooted and cleaned out. Photos coming soon...

Early morning hours and evenings after dinner dishes are cleared away have proven to be the most comfortable time to tackle outdoor work. Our afternoons are all ready beginning to be noticeably warmer and working in the hot sun is out for this heat-sensitive gardener.  During the long winter months, while quilting, my mind goes to being in the gardens and now that a trowel is in my gloved hands, thoughts wandered back to quilting...I enjoy the best of both worlds! And when temperatures begin to soar (that is upper 70's here in Northern Wisconsin!) taking an afternoon break means heading to the sewing room...
These are the four latest Civil War Blocks from Barbara Brackman's weekly posting...I started to panic, knowing I was four weeks behind...things are back under control again!
 The Underground Railroad block (top row - right side) was a timely one - during my recent visit to Elkhorn with my friend, Connie...we made a stop at the Milton House in Milton, Wisconsin. This is the only known safe house for slaves seeking freedom that actually held underground tunnels. We stopped by before Memorial Day which meant tours had to be scheduled in advance. During the summer months the buildings are open throughout the week. I would like to go back for one of their tours. (Great photographer that I am, the outdoor photos I took have mysteriously disappeared...)

The only other stitching I can show for now is Block #9 for my Beyond the Cherry Tree quilt. I can see the vase is a little "wonky" and may redo in the future...
A surprise arrived in the mail this week - from Teresa over at It's All Good. She won my needlebox giveaway a few months ago. I sure didn't expect this - a thank you gift! Isn't this little needle keeper so sweet and the accompanying handmade card is adorable! Thank you Teresa! You are a dear!

More things to share with you in the days the meantime, I will leave you with one last fragrance to enjoy...

A Saturday morning Apple Pancake to fuel us up for a day in the garden...this started off our busy weekend and is one of Mr. Outback's favorite breakfast's to prepare.

Have a wonderful, fragrant filled week everyone!

Love those little "volunteers" that pop up unexpectedly!