Monday, August 22, 2011

Silly bird

I finished the first block of the Whimsical Quilt Garden.  Of course my favorite part are the silly little birds.

Is that not the funniest bird?  The flowers are quirky too.  I will have to start loading the pics into Photoshop to correct colors and crop the pics.  doh.

Lots to get done now that I am back in town, gotta go

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Great weather for a road trip

Sunny days and cooler nights.  Crickets.  Hummingbirds.  Ah, late summer.  I am looking forward to peaches and fresh tomatoes.

Tomorrow I am heading to Helper Arts and Music Festival  Another opportunity to stay with friends, eat good food, spin all weekend (both at the festival and at their house) and shop a little.  The people watching is supreme too and we will get to talk to the characters who live around Helper.  Always entertaining.  It looks like this year is a Zumba Festival on Saturday morning at 8:30.  I think we will be eating biscuits and gravy at Marshas around then, so might have to Zumba to work that off.  heehee

I did another grueling day in the front yard putting the recycled redwood under the fence for weed control and to make it easier to mow next to it.  But, it's done, at least all the 4 foot pieces.  I have two more pieces to do on the other side of the front yard and then the short pieces on the front step-down panels.  Next job out there is to empty that black soil bag.  That will be that for the front yard for this year.  whew!

Back yard is another thing.  I am going to be taking the railroad ties from my veggie garden.  It's just not producing anymore and will just have a flat garden, maybe that will help.  I have added tons of manure, compost, fertilizer, etc.  Nothing has helped very much.  I think the drip system leached a lot of minerals from the soil.  I can see an iron problem in other areas of the drip system areas.  So, now I water with sprinklers or soaker hoses and things are starting to look better.  Odd problem.  I will remove all the drop system stuff as I feel like doing it.

The first thing to do back there is clean up the area for the future covered patio and get the footings dug and poured.  I will be adding the post holders into the concrete, so have to do some research on how to do this.  The cover will be free standing.  I don't want to attach it to the carport slab (now enclosed as a garage) because any more weight on that will keep pulling it away from the house, that's not a good idea.

Lots to do next summer I hope.  I have my fingers crossed to get a job this summer/fall and maybe the universe will agree.


Monday, August 15, 2011

It is tomorrow, just not tomorrow

I have a lot of pics today.  Finally!  Quilting first:

This is the first block of My Whimsical Quilt Garden .  I chose the brown colorway shown at the bottom of the webpage.  I did order their fabric pack for the backgrounds, but it wasn't quite enough for the 20 blocks that I want to do, so will find more chocolate fabric later.  I am working each flower or bird, etc. at a time.  This first block has 42 unique pieces.  It was overwhelming, so decided to take smaller bites.

My birds will be turquoise with most of the flowers bright pinks in dots and stripes and plaids.  The colors are much brighter than they are showing in this pic and the stuff on the carpet came from another quilt shown below.  This is the current civil war fabrics reproduction quilt that I am doing as a block of the month.  Lots o piecing.  Lots.

This square measures probably 5 feet.  It's been fun to sew the pieces together as we go.  Now I have new blocks to do and don't know when we will be adding them to the big piece.  Here is one of the next blocks, I have 3 more to finish.

I also finished all the red blocks from Aunt Millies Garden .  Our applique group started this one awhile back and after I got the first block of pink carnations done (wow, what seemed like hundreds of little points) it was a blast to work on.  I have been working on the diagonal sashing and yesterday, I started putting the blocks together.  I haven't gotten all the little centers pieced and added, but will get that done.  I have the borders to work on now.  Isn't it fun?  Who knew everything would look great on red?

The last picture is of the antique quilt top that I am hand quilting for friend Deb Mc.  She was given two quilt tops, one not quite finished.  She also had a Baby Wolf loom that she was willing to trade to have the quilt tops finished.  I could not resist.  Baby Wolf looms are wonderful things.  It's sitting in front of a closet and won't be used until I fulfill my end of the deal.  So, the quilt is on the frame and it took me awhile to figure out how I wanted to quilt it.  I am not an expert at this, but will be one.  I have quilted before, but not for many years.  This quilt top was appliqued and completely pieced by hand.  Tiny, tiny stitches.  The fabric is sheeting.  It doesn't seem to have been used, or at least very much, I don't see any worn spots.  The backing I chose is sheeting to match, with a cotton batting.  The other quilt top is all pieced and also was entirely pieced by hand.  It's the one that I will be finishing.  Just one corner to do I think and one border.  I will machine quilt that one.

That's it for the quilting stuff.  I have loved working on all of it.  Now for updates on the knitting:

Here's the sweater/shawl.  I ran out of yarn and decided to put beads on the edge.  I have the beads and a little yarn left so will continue with that.  This color shows up way bright, it's more subdued than this.  You can see the armholes.

This last picture is of the navy/purple-y sweater.

It's still a mystery to me why the color shows up so blue.  But, this way you can see the shaping pattern.  The sleeves are done and in and I am just finishing with the little cables, so it's smooth sailing from here on.

Whew!  I have been busy.

I am also continuing on with yard work.  Today, it's cooler out there this morning, so will see if I can get the rest of the redwood put under the fence on the west side of the front yard and also move the rest of the black soil out of the bag and onto the roses.  I did get that little garden bed done with it's red hot pokers planted.  The quails loved it.  They have made little dirt bath places in the freshly dug soil.  That being said, I need to get myself out there.

Thursday, August 11, 2011


Um, not me physically, but probably mentally.  I have been so tired this week and it's probably from sitting around.  duh.  I              can't                 stop                    knitting.

I did get my butt outside this morning though and got the new garden section dug and planted.  whew!  I have been working on doing this for a couple of years now.  What was the final push though was finding 3 all red Red Hot Poker plants at the local nursery.  They have been sitting in the back garden beds being watered by rain and sprinklers and growing in their too small containers.  Now they have new homes and will grow very well.

This part of the front lawn never stays wet enough to keep the grass looking good, so I fixed that problem.  Now to finish edging the lawn and weeding a bit.  Oh, yeah, and getting more recycled redwood put under the fence.  Now that I figured how to do that, it won't be so bad except for the heat.

Pics tomorrow of a lot of stuff.  I promise.


Saturday, August 6, 2011

Off to see Mumsie

Today I will drive to Logan to see my Mom.  She has had her hands full with my niece and her 3 kids living with her in her mobile home for the last year and 8 months.  They finally got a low cost housing grant and have moved out.  woohoo!!  Now she is beginning the cleaning.  I can help with that for sure.

That whole thing has been really hard on Mom and it's such a relief for her to have her life back again.  She was trying to help by giving them a home, but what an ordeal.

I have been trying to catch up with my DVR after being gone for 5 days for retreat.  whew!  Much knitting has been accomplished though.  I need to take more pics of the sweater/shawl because I am at the crochet edging.

 I did get some sewing done today.  I am trying to get the sashing strips done for the Aunt Millies Garden quilt.  This meant sewing strips together and then cutting them on a 45 degree angle.  They said to use 9 strips and so I did that, but they didn't come out long enough to trim them to 14 1/2".  I am sure it was my fault somehow, but I finally got them finished this day.  I will be taking pics of each of the 12 appliqued blocks and then starting to sew them all together.  Then....I have to start the borders which have more applique on them.  I really love the look of the whole pattern as done by the Piece O Cake ladies so am doing it just like they did.

So, off trippin' again.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Nice Drive

My last official job for Park City Retreat this year was completed this morning.  Driving up the canyon to the quiet and very moist meadow to get the rest of the camping gear and get it safely stored away until next year.

The pasture was full of robins hunting.  Both older adults and the almost full grown speckled babies.  There were 4 balloons over Kimball Junction too!

The meadow?  Quiet except for the birds and the occasional bike rider or jogger on the trail.

Home again and now to get all the stuff packed away and get some spinning and knitting done today.  Maybe some plumbing to finally finish the bathroom sink installation.  Just the pipe between the sink and wall and silicone around the sink.  Sounds easy, but after the drama of trying to get all the right parts to get the installation done, it was another plumbing adventure and several trips to Lowes.  I think 20 minutes should do it.  :>)


Monday, August 1, 2011

Back to the Valley

Retreat is over (almost) for this year.  I just have to make one more trip to get the Woolpack stuff loaded and back into it's storage unit.  Wow, it was a lot of fun this year.  It usually is a lot of fun, but this year was a smaller group and I think every one to a person had a great time.

I loved the weather (sunny with cooler afternoon clouds that rained very rarely), the workshops (I have a new basket almost made and am determined to finish it this week if it ever stops raining in the valley-sheesh), the prizes (wow, some amazing things won), my two new spindles (one bought and one won), I finished the gray fleece that I was spinning and have more than half a bobbin of some Blue Face Leister that I actually dyed (I hardly ever spin anything that I dye to sell), I relaxed (yay), I got some reading done (Echo in the Bone, Gabaldon), I got an amazing massage by master Justine, two great fires in the mornings, my business did well (thanks everyone), the hot bath when I got home, my kitty so over the moon happy, and a happy man to have me home.  What more did I need?  Nothing.

Oh, pictures?  I got em...

This is the view from my chair under a 10x20 canopy in 4 views.  This one above is my business canopy and the Woolpack welcome canopy on the right.

This is the view up the meadow (it's not really that steep, but pretty much level) This is the kitchen for retreat. We have volunteers that plan the meals and then they are prepared in the meadow.  yummy.

This is the view down the meadow with all the kitchen stuff piled on the tables ready to move to the kitchen.  The next day, there were canopies all the way down the meadow and up past ours.

This is a little dark, but it's Barb on the left and Justine on the right.  It's the only other picture that I took of people during the weekend.  You can see the prize tent (with the blue) and the food tent just beyond that has always been raccoon proof.  

The loot.  A silk Chinese bag with Suri Alpaca in it from Adrien, silk hankies (Carolyn), little skeins (Carolyn), top row brown alpaca from Esther, The Parker spindle, carded purple batt (Carolyn), the Greensleeves spindle, and finally gorgeous green top (Jennifer).

What I traded Justine for after she picked 2 necklaces that I made.

3 of the leftovers ($35 a piece, just a gratuitous ad fpr me)

Two more of those necklaces.  The dark pendant is a fossil.

This is what I am spinning now.  Ophir Creek on Blue Face Leister.  Spins like butta.

Well, what's this?  That sweater/shawl that's growing!  I am past the sleeve openings and moving towards the crochet stuff.

Oops, I forgot this prize.  Blue Alpaca/pink wool from Robin.  It's really soft so will be yummy to spin.  
Oh, I also got a great book from Wendy T, Textured Knits.  Love the simple, elegant patterns.

Well, I had better get back to the pies in the oven (peach).  And get ready to cook dinner for me and my man.  Pork steaks, mashed potatoes with gravy and peach pie for desert.  I just realized I am starving.  Had better have a snack now.