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Monday, December 26, 2016

Merry Christmas!

 Well Christmas is over for another year - TG! I'm soooo happy I took home this table topper I made for mother. I always liked it - the red polka dots really stand out, and it looks so nice on my coffee table. The blue & white striped loveseat in the background will be history soon as I have decided to take the mater's condo sized sofa and chair. I'll piggy back on Dad's move into Chartwell (coming early in Jan) and have the movers make a stop @ my place.
The season started off with Christmas Eve dinner with the Pater at his house - maybe our last in his dining room. We had Tourtiere, made by Val, the pater's step daughter, and salad and an apple cake made by me! His Christmas table runner and placemats were quilted by me a couple of years ago and look so nice on his table. After dinner we watched some TVO programs about the Royals, then back to my place to sleep over. Breakfast was eggs & bacon and more apple cake - yummm.

Dad had a restless night so I let him nap while I made the first of two hors d'oeuvres for the day at my sister's. I dropped Dad off at his place so he could go down and visit Dorothy @ her home, then off I went across town to pick up "the boys". I gave Mark his $20 Star Trek collector coin and the equivalent to David so he can go have a beer on me! Then back to my place to make the beef/horse radish roll ups - yummm. One more trip and we're finally at my sister's for the BIG celebrations :)
 William was his usual sleepy boy, and Claire was, considering all the excitement, well behaved for most of the day. Here she had just opened her Miss Prickly (hedgehog) plush toy, one of many toys to come!
William finally opened his eyes, so was able to get a family pic (Claire was too busy running around!). Chaos ensued as we opened presents and tried to have a family dinner, but Claire wanted to watch TV instead so Vince ate with her in the Den. Kids eh! All in all it was a busy, tiring but fun day. Dad and I got home by 8:00 pm, which is late enough. Enjoying Boxing day in my kitchen and don't intend on going out for at least one day! My TV is dying, so I'll need to go shopping this week to get a Boxing day deal. Wish me luck!


Thursday, December 22, 2016

Week before Christmas

So it's the week before Christmas and as usual I'm soooo busy :(. Thought that things would calm down and I would have some time for myself once I retired - HA! Monday I was with the Pater and we finished his holiday shopping, banking, post office chores. Father has decided to go into a retirement home in 2017, so this means lots of arranging and decisions to be made. January will be busy!! Tuesday was a bone density test for me then furniture shopping. I'm trying to decide whether or not to take over the mater's condo sofa and chair or just get my own. I kinda like hers - the size is good and the colours will work in my living room, and it's free (other than the cost to move it here). On the other hand, I've waited so long for something new for myself .... What to do, what to do ... Wednesday was another Dr appointment then off to campus for more drugs. Stopped in and visited my former colleaques. I made then gave this candle mat to my former boss. Here's me doing a Show-n-Tell @ guild night.

Later in the afternoon I dropped over to my sister's place with the new candle mats I made last week. The black & green one is for my sister and the red and grey one is for my niece Lisa. Had some problems with one "slice" on the black one so the centre is not perfect :(. They both have the same green backing fabric.
 I also finished off two more Lucy Boston POTC blocks - woohoo!
I really like the one on the left, thanks Susan for finding the perfect black/brown/gold batik print for this one! The one on the right was a hard one. I chose the funky beige/grey fabric to match the blue/grey flowers in the brown fabric. Not sure it makes the statement I was looking for. Hmmmm.
Well, Christmas 2016 is shaping up to be OK. First holiday without mother which will be different. But then again, it will be the first holiday with baby William!


Monday, December 12, 2016

Snow !

So, yesterday we got 20 centimeters of snow 😕.  Normally this would send me into a tizzy worrying about how I would get to the car and get  it cleaned off in time for my Monday morning commute, but wait! I'm retired now so no worries - Yippee! I do have to go out tomorrow for a CT scan @ 6:30 pm so will be cleaning off the car at some point today.
Since it was a "snow day" yesterday I decided it was appropriate to sit at home and sew. I put  my Lucy Boston blocks on the design wall and decided 4 of my blocks were too white :( so am in the process of remaking 4 blocks. Here's yesterday's block
The star bursts come from a Christmas fabric, believe it or not! The other 3 blocks are all cut and basted and ready for sewing. Loving it and getting my Lucy POTC mojo back on. That's good as I have decided to also do the 150 Canadian Women  sampler quilt. These should keep me busy this winter !

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Busy busy busy!

Well, my first couple of retirement weeks have been busy! Met with the new Doctor = new round of tests; met with new financial people = new headache trying to keep up with all their jargon/quoted dollar stuff, and some fun stuff = several lunches and a day of shopping with a friend. No complaints here!
 It's blossom time at my house, the Pater gave me a lovely flowering "Christmas" cactus to celebrate my retirement. And of course my own decided it should blossom also! For the last couple of years I have put this plant on the patio for the summer. It seems to like that as it grows several new stems and flowers every year now! Me likey :)
I did manage to get into the sewing room for a few minutes and completed these Christmas place mats. This is the last of the black with red Poinsettias fabric. I backed them with this peace/love/hope/joy fabric and used my new binder clips when doing the binding, THANKS Walter ! (I used his gift certificate to purchase a 50 pack of binder clips!)

I've been having a "week". Thursday was back @ Western for a luncheon with the ladies from one of the committees I used to be on. Of course I multi tasked and got several other tasks done before going back home. Once home I completed an hour of ironing then finally collapsed to watch some TV. What the heck! My TV remote decided to quit! This required a quick trip out to Walmart for new batteries as  those I had were all the wrong size. Phew! Friday got over to Dad's and finally figured out how to turn on Closed Captioning for his flat screen TV. Only took 3 months to get that task accomplished! Then we started scanning several (at least one generation) of his genealogical photos. Took awhile as I needed to remember how his scanner works, then how to import into Picassa to caption! We rewarded ourselves with dinner @ Swiss Chalet. Half way home after dropping Dad off I realised I was missing my winter hat! Oh No!! So another trip out, with a flash light, and I lucked out - there it was against the curb - Yippee. When I got home, for the second time I noticed my hat's "flower" pin  was gone :(.
So, Saturday afternoon off I go back to the Swiss Chalet parking lot and got lucky again - there it was, wet but intact! Since I was already out I took a trip over to the cemetery to check up on mother's stone.
Because the weather has been so mild they were able to get it into the ground before the spring. We purchased a "large" plot and decided to have my (real) name also engraved as this will be my resting spot some day. Being single it made sense to make the arrangements ahead of time. Sorry if this posting is a wee bit ghoulish. We went with a Lighthouse as many of mother's Manitoulin relatives were lighthouse keepers, and added both our "maiden" names so future genealogists will be able to figure out who we are!

Monday, November 21, 2016

1st week of Retirement - Woohoo!

Well, my first week of retirement is done and I must say I am loving it! No complaints so far !! I was given a journal as one of my retirement gifts and have noted my one accomplishment per day in it. Last week we enjoyed wonderfully warm weather, but the snow came on Sunday -  just in time for our family dinner :(. Lisa has sleepy William in a snuggy, and Claire is finishing off a piece of birthday cake!
 They liked the silver christening mug I had engraved and gave them from the mater. So glad I made the effort. Now, even though he never met her William will have something from his great grandma. They also loved loved loved the quilt! Lisa read the foxy label to Claire then they oohed and aahed over the foxy front. Lisa & Greg said it will look so good in William's nursery.
So glad everyone is happy. Now onwards to my own projects - at last!!

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Freedom - At Last!!

WooHoo!!!!! Must say I can hardly believe it but the day has finally come. 
Technically I'm not retired until January 1st, 2017, but I had lots of vacation days saved up and chose to use them rather than be paid out. SOOOOO worth it :) This last week was far more anxious than I anticipated, as evidenced by many weird dreams and sleepless nights. None-the-less I have survived :). Friday started out with me delivering a gift bag to each of my colleagues. The mug rugs were a BIG HIT! The office was a buzz with everyone comparing what was made for them, then Laura decided they should be displayed and people could guess who got what. 
It was fun watching them all oh and aah over the mug rugs and trying to guess who got what :) (that's skinny me standing on a kick stool taking a pic, with Jim and Laura). 
Here's "the collection". It definitely set the mood for the day, I'm so glad I took the time to do this as it was so well received. My colleagues took me out for a lovely lunch at  Ninety-One, the cafe at Windermere Manor.
Starting at the bottom left is Liz M., Peggy E., John T (retired 2 weeks ago), me, Walter (Librarian Emeritus), Melanie M. (she left last Friday for one of the affiliated Libraries), Christy S., Marg S. Bottom Left: Laura C., Fran G, Adam K., Bruce F ( looking down at his speech), Kristin H., Courtney W., Catherine W., and Jim S.
I had a lovely Parsnip and Pear soup followed by a nice Caesar salad. There were speeches and gifts, most importantly the gift certificate to the Marsh (quilt) Store.  In my thank you speech I told them how I anticipate a lot more quilting, including more charity quilting. Earlier in the week my friend from the Law Library took me out to lunch at The Wave. We had a good chat and it was nice to connect for reasons other than work. We worked together on one of the many committees I've been involved with, and connected with each other as we were/are both dealing with the same life issues.
When all this was done I was off to the Pater's. We chatted for a bit then went out for a lovely Prime Rib dinner. So all in all I can't complain AT ALL. The day was long and tiring, but it's all over now. When I got home the first thing I did was turn off my alarm clocks!!
It's another beautiful sunny Sunday, so I think I'll do some work outside today and NOT my usual Sunday routine. Must develop new routines now. Looking forward to that :)

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Busy week!

Well, it's been a very busy week, and the next 2 (countdown to retirement) look like they'll be busy too.
Friday was retirement party for my colleague and friend John T. Here's me making my speech before giving him his quilted gift. John is a published poet so I started my farewell address to him with a quote from my favourite book (can you guess ?)
"The time has come," the Walrus said, To talk of many things:
Of shoes and ships and sealing-wax. Of cabbages and kings.
"But wait a bit," the Oysters cried. Before we have our chat;
For some of us are out of breath, And all of us are fat! (except me!) 
No hurry!" said the Carpenter.They thanked him much for that."

I made a cloth bag for the quilt which is what I'm holding as John displays his quilt. John liked to walk along the creek on his way to & from work. The back of the quilt is a photographic print of fall leaves! I think he liked it :).

After work on Friday I was off to my sister's place to meet the new grand nephew!
That's me holding William Forest, with momma (Lisa) and his sister Claire, who just wanted to play ;).
And here's a Smith family pic - Great Grandpa Smith, me with baby William and my sister, proud Grandma. That's the Friendship quilt my guild gave me after the mater's passing, which I shared with my sister. William was 3 weeks early, and must have been tired as he slept through the whole evening ! His Fancy Foxes baby quilt goes to the quilter today - yeah!
When I got home my kitchen sink was TOTALLY backed up. 3 bottles of Draino later and nothing is happening - Grrrrrr. Guess I'll have to call a plumber.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Quilt Show!!

Hello all out there in blog land. I've been remiss in not blogging, but have been tres busy with numerous appointments all in aid of my upcoming (not soon enough) retirement!
It's another wonderfully sunny Sunday with marshmallow clouds drifting by and the sun peaking through my Japanese Maple. The autumnal colours are wonderful. Will I enjoy Sundays this much once I'm retired? Hmmmm, guess I'll find out. Speaking of colours I finally got the Fancy Foxes baby quilt top completed. I love the modern colours of this quilt, guess it's my first "modern" quilt :).
And none too soon as baby William Forest was born 3 weeks early (Oct 15th). So, now I have an excuse for his quilt not being ready ! This will go to the quilter next weekend, so hopefully we'll have it to William before his first month's birthday.
This weekend was the guild quilt show, and what a show it was !! Here are a few pics for you

 This is one of two from my quilting buddy June. She completed these after a workshop with John Willard. It's one of those techniques where you make up the top, slash then sew it up again. Not sure I would have the chutzpah to do it, but admit they are gorgeous!

These two wall hangings are the result of a stained glass workshop the guild held. I didn't go, but heard it was a fun time and the ladies produced some lovely works.

And of course there is my Wild Flowers on the right here. I think it was the only piece that was hand quilted in the entire show!

I have to admit I did not take pics of every quilt, not that I didn't like them all! And, I did not take pics of the labels, so I apologise, I can't give attributions.

I do love the colours of these two - aren't they gorgeous! Black backgrounds are so effective.

And, on the softer colour side ....

The label for the quilt on the left said the maker could not remember the "name" of this quilt. What's in a name? To paraphrase Shakespeare,  a Rose by any other name is still a beautiful quilt!

And this "Wild Thing" is just too cute for words!!!

Another guild project, last year's (?) row by row challenge. There were several examples, with small differences, making them all interesting. They were all beautiful but I only took one pic, as an example!

And whoooooo doesn't like Owls ? You may remember it was 2 1/2 years ago I was making an Owl baby quilt. I really like this Owl quilt, very imaginative with all the block different sizes.

La Passacaglai quilts !! Sorry the pics aren't better 'cause these beauties are just wonderful! I did download all the free patterns from the internet for this wonder, but haven't started it yet (still have my Lucy Boston to complete!)

I took pics of these two to show you how much fun and different a pattern can be just with colour!

Hexies ! Need I say more ?

Large hexies in nice subtle colours.

The hexie piece on the right is a finished example from the one workshop I did attend last year, and it was THE BEST workshop ever!!

I still haven't even started mine (darn) but my enthusiasm is still there, so one of these retirement days ....

And now for some stunners .....  The Toronto skyline, apparently this was her own design! Can you believe it? Wow, such talented ladies!

And this Black, White, Grey and Red stunner, well what can you say, it's gorgeous! The use of the ombre grey makes this one shimmer. I suspect it may have been a kit, but even so, this one is a stunner!

And now to the Southwest ....

Foxes, the hotties of the season,  were represented in a pillow and in this original (?) orange fox silhouette.

And foxes were added creatively as a row in this colourful beauty!

My quilt buddy and co-driver to most quilt events made these ltwo ovely ones. She's soooo good with colour and loves making scrappy things.

And to round off this quilt show here's another one done with the black background.

What a great quilt show - well done ladies!!