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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Should I worry ?

For some reason the leaves on my Japanese Maple turned brown (not red) shriveled up but did not fall off ! So my tree is still loaded with leaves and I am wondering if I should be worried this winter, not that I can do anything about it ..... We got 5 cm of snow last night, and they are predicting a possible 30 more cms tonight! Guess I'll find out tomorrow if the weather predictors are correct and if my tree can take that much snow. Oh No - wish me luck as I really don't want to lose my beautiful tree! The people behind me have a large sugar Maple which also didn't lose it's leaves. Must have been something in the weather this Fall.
Have been feeling under the weather this last couple of weeks so not much sewing, but did manage to get out to the annual Sew What's holiday gathering. This year we did something different and went out to a restaurant for dinner instead of our usual potluck! It was so nice to see everyone and get out of the house, just wish I had been feeling a bit better and hungrier as it was an all-you-can-eat buffet.
We drew names out of a bag so our secret Santa gifts could be targeted to the recipient. I think it worked out well as everyone seemed to enjoy their gifts. This was mine - now how did they know I love road trips??

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Yeah !

My "Christmas" Cactus is blooming and my retirement Orchid has 3 blossoms since the beginning of November. YEAH!!  Nice to have live flowers in the house. The condo people have been around and we now have 2 new trees in my front yard, and one in the back. Another Yeah, and they finally came around and trimmed my Forsythias and Rose of Sharon, so a final Yeah. Things are looking good for the holiday season, although I am waaaaay behind in my shopping which is usually done by this time. My family do the draw a name from the hat thing, and we kinda forgot to do that at Thanksgiving :(. But then, we were all sick with a cold, I'll blame it on that. Here's this year's front door decoration
The lantern is actually behind the birch log, even though in this pic it looks like it is sitting on top.
One more week for my sock knitting class to learn how to close the toe, then onto the second sock for a pair. I picked up some free patterns, one for Yoga socks (no toe and no heel), if I have time I'll make a pair for my niece.
Back at my Canada 150 blocks YEAH, here are blocks 85-90. I may just get this done by Xmas ?? Next week Vikings starts again for the season = one final YEAH !

Sunday, November 05, 2017

The patio has been put to bed for the season, and I am enjoying the last lovely days of Autumn, although today is a dull rainy Sunday :(.  I've been down with a cold the last couple of weeks but feeling better now, hence not much to show sewing wise. I have been busy though .... of course ;). This month our Sewing group's hostesses was also sick with a cold so I had to call around and find a new location for the group and then let everyone know. That change of venue also necessitated a change of plans on the transferal of two bins of the group's donated items for Wellspring. This task accomplished I was then onto the transferal of the 30 vintage quilts I donated to the guild. Another task accomplished, and I can now see my kitchen floor = YEAH. My sock knitting classes have begun and I have half a sock knit already = YEAH. And of course I am back at prepping Lucy Boston parts. Boring but necessary. This week I'll be making  along with making place mats for the guild's donation to Meals on Wheels, so no, I won't have any 150 Canadian Women blocks to show off :(.
November is usually a busy month for me with medical appointments, car appointments, banking appointments, Christmas shopping and general fun stuff, so you may not see much from me !

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Happy Fall !

I'm sharing a photo of my great niece Claire and her brother William posted by my niece to FB (hope she doesn't mind, but this pic is just too cute). It's been a couple of weeks of family stuff :) First there was Thanksgiving. The turkey was wonderful, sorry no pics. I made my usual coleslaw and took a Pumpkin pie. Both were a hit.
I've been busy sewing. Blocks 79-84. I'm happy with the fabric choices and almost got my stripes aligned. That was my first time working with stripes and trying to get them all straight. Maybe next time! I'm back at prepping hexies for the connector blocks for my Lucy Boston. Boring but necessary work. This may take another week or so before I can continue with making the connector blocks. And just to add to this a quilt friend donated/gave to me a baggie of hexies, some already put together into Grandmother's Flower Garden. Love them, but boy or boy, my work never seems to end! (not complaining). And to add to all this I decided it was time to start working on the personal items on my bucket list so I signed myself up for a class on knitting socks! I know how to knit, but it's been 20+ years since my last creation, so I need a refresher!
Moving along with the downsizing, the guild has decided to take all my vintage quilts that I don't want. what they can't use they will send to the Men's Mission, so every one will have a good home. Now to just them out of my living room !
Yesterday we celebrated William's first birthday. It was supposed to be a big party with lots of kids, but William is teething and wasn't feeling well, so just our family and this guest (My sister holding 5 day old Oscar, son of a friend of Lisa's)
I got to see the "new" kitchen - and it's soooo gorgeous1 Makes me want to follow up with a reno of my own ;). Maybe next Spring.
William wasn't too sure what was going on, especially when we all sang Happy Birthday to him, but he sure got the hang of it when the cupcakes came out! He's a good eater ;)

Monday, October 02, 2017

Sunny October!

Wasn't the weekend lovely? Just what we've been waiting for , nice Fall weather, not too hot not cold and SUNNY :) Did a wee bit of fall decorating. I try to cheer things up every year and do things just a bit different than last year. Nobody notices as I'm usually home alone :(.
Had another busy busy weekend. Friday got together with my sister and her DH and we went to the local mall which was holding an antique show. Remember me moaning about having lost the business card of the antique lady I sell things to? Well, luck was on my side as she was there at the show! I managed to sell off 2 fur coats, a box full of vintage linens and another box of French Ivory and miscellaneous china pieces. Made $250  :) Call me happy! My sister was able to offload mother's collection of vintage postcards, and her DH sold some of Dad and Mother's coins. A good day for all of us!
The nephew came over and we took 2 boxes of miscellaneous half empty paint cans to be recycled and one more box to the Goodwill. He also took out my garbage for me which meant THE LAST BAG OF SHREDDED PAPER has gone ! Whoppee!!!!!!!! Now to get rid of the quilts I decided to donate and then I can say I have completed my downsizing, at least as much as I am willing to do for now . That will deserve another whoppee ;)
Kept myself busy last week sewing blocks 73-78 of the CW 150 quilt along. Pleased with this grouping, especially the bottom left one :).

Monday, September 25, 2017

Fall ? What Fall !

So it's September and it's supposed to be Fall weather, except we're enduring a week of heat alerts and now air quality alerts. As much as I love summer and warm weather I can do without the humidity taking us over 40 C, and certainly not air quality issues. So I've been stuck in the house for days on end, which means I'm getting some sewing done on my Canada 150 quilt blocks. Yeah !
 Blocks 55- 60. The Mounties drove me crazy as one is slightly off kilter and no matter how many times I unsewed/resewed that portion she's still slightly crooked. Maybe it's saying something ? Top left block includes the Foxes fat quarter Edith kindly let me have. I like it  - thanks Edith!!
Blocks 61- 66 not as trying as the week before TG. I'm happy with these results 
And blocks 67-72.  Right side blocks were very finicky with lots of tiny half square triangles. Took my time with these, one block per day instead of my usual 3 blocks per day. Almost half way there, yippee !!
I also made 4 of these placemats for our charity sewing (Wellsprings) trying to use up this coffee fabric. Still have some so will need to think of something else to creatively use it up.

Have finally - yes finally finished all my paper shredding YEAH ! 20 bags of shredded paper out of my house! I can retire the shredder to the basement. Doing the waiting game right now for some of my other downsizing/recycling projects. Hope to get all the extra paint out to Rona this weekend but waiting waiting waiting for the guild executive to make up their minds about my vintage quilt donation. If they don't respond soon I'll donate the lot to the Salvation Army/Men's Mission and be done with it. Also waiting on the condo's landscaping company to respond to my request to trim my Forsythias. HATE hate hate all this waiting...... GRRR. 

 On the bright side I found a good home for this coffin top portable Singer . I got it many many years ago for $5. It still works except it is missing its knee bar. One of the ladies in my guild (Jacqui VM) and her husband collect and refurbish old sewing machines. She has agreed to take it off my hands and they have the missing part! Jacqui is in touch with an organization that sends these old machines to less developed nations, so it will find a good home - yeah!
TTFN, keep cool in this hot weather

P.S. My orchid HAS flowered ! Three blooms and 2 new leafs. Yeah !!

Sunday, September 03, 2017

Lost and Found

Well hello there! I've been soooooo busy these last two months cleaning, re-organizing, and collecting items to donate to Goodwill or sell to an antique dealer. I've been through every closet, drawer and cupboard in the house and it felt soooo good to have this completed. Next task was to contact that  antique/collectibles dealer to sell off my stuff. I had collected vintage linens (tablecloths and napkins), hankies, gloves, vintage purses and a couple of fur coats. I had  her business card stashed on my kitchen counter for months and months and months while I recuperated from last winter's illness and got my life gathered up. Can I find it now that I'm ready ?   NOOOOOOOOO !!!
At some point in my cleaning/re-organizing I put the card somewhere safe so I wouldn't lose it. Well we all know that the infamous "safe place" can never be found or remembered when you look for it.  Without that card some of my downsizing  is on hold. Wish me luck!!

It seems I'm losing everything these days. Went to the hairdressers for a cut and discovered the next day that one of my gold studs was missing. Bummer as I wear these everyday nonstop! So, off to the mall with my sister for a shopping spree.  This story has a happy ending as I found exactly what I was looking for as replacements for the gold studs, then treated myself by purchasing new diamonds studs. Whoohoo!

Then last night as I was trundleing off to bed I dropped one of  my pearl earrings I had been wearing.  I was just too tired to go searching for it and decided to wait until the morning for the next big search. Well didn't I luck out this morning and step right on it first thing - so another lucky FIND for me!!

Last Sunday was Decoration Day at the Watford cemetery where father is buried. Not having been able to be with him his last few days and barely remembering the funeral I felt it was important to attend. I have only been to one other decoration day, and that was with my Grandmother when I was six. I remember  wondering what dead meant and why Grandma was crying. Now years later I realize the love of her life had only been dead about 3 years. My B-I-L drove and my sister, her son and myself all attended. They had a Piper and a Trooping of the Colours from the local Legion in remembrance of those lost at Vimy Ridge. We got to see his stone marker. We chose the scroll to depict his diplomas and those he, as a teacher, helped others obtain.
While all this angst happening I have completed some sewing. Today I plan to make up some place mats using up the leftover coffee fabric from all those mug rugs I made last year.

I have completed weeks #15, 16,17 and 18 of my Canada 150 quilt -along.Still having lots of fun making these and continue to be amazed at how  difficult it is to be that accurate! I'm trying hard not to be too much of a perfectionist, but also want this one to go together well. I also don't want to repeat any fabrics too much while at the same time add in "Canada" fabrics (Maple leaves).

I made a duplicate block #50 for Rachel Zimmerman Brachman, the daughter of a former colleague of mine. I decided to make the extra block into a wee Canada 150 pillow which Walter and Linda can pass along to Rachel, who lives in California now. Here's her pillow
So that's been my last couple of weeks, good thing it's Sunday and we can all hope for a better things to come :)

Monday, August 21, 2017

I must be losing my mind!

So if you've been reading my blog lately you'll know that I have spent the last few weeks/months house cleaning/downsizing. That included cleaning and reorganizing my sewing room. Sad to say I'm a piler not a filer, and habits of a lifetime won't ever change.  But once in awhile I need to stop, take stock and cleanup! So, it has taken 2 months of intensive work, but my sewing room is CLEAN and reorganized - YEAH ! It's certainly worth the effort - I found 8 new rotary blades!!
The top photo shows the shelves, formerly upright now turned on their side. The TV is now at a better height and I can unplug it more easily (see earlier post re Gremlins for why I need to unplug the TV). In the left pic you can see I removed the HUGE bulletin board (which had lots of paper pinned to it which I never read!) and put up a much smaller bulletin board. I "found" a small white shelf in the bathroom which is perfect for my half lady pin cushion and to hang my stiletto, measuring tape, rotary cutters and the humbug bag which hold my binding clips. I resurrected a large white cutting mat given me a long time age. It fits this space perfectly! The box of kleenex and bowl of peanuts (brain food) are as necessary as the cutters ;).
In this pic on the right I have hung a walnut tea cup shelf which belonged to mother. It's perfect here as the shelves already have a groove to hold my large rulers. The small glass ginger jars hold a collection of mother's threads on wooden spools. She thought I was crazy when I asked for all her old thread - "who wants those?" I DO, I DO!. It also holds my vintage wood sock darner and the Matryoshka doll father brought back from Russia. The pattern in front of my sewing machine is a Chili Pepper table runner pattern called Moondance. My sister has asked for a new table runner for her coffee table - I must be losing my mind adding another project to my "To Do" list!! I have to say I'm satisfied with the results of all my efforts. Now all I have to do is remember where I put everything!!

 My friend M and I spent Sunday afternoon at the International Plowing Match quilt show in Seaforth. I have missed most of the local quilt shows this season. Neither of us have ever attended this one. I liked the quilt in the top pic the best with its Kaffe Fassett fabrics. I'm really getting interested in scrappy quilts - perhaps a reflection of how much fabric I have ;) ;), hence the pic on the left.  And I took the pic on the right because I have that fabric !! and wanted to remember this great idea of how to use it up!

This quilt was amazing with fussy cut stars and postage stamp four patches. Excellent work !

This was a sampler quilt with a controlled colour palette. I really like the way she shadowed each block with black. Here's a close up.

And finally, my one and only block this week towards my Canada 150 quilt.