April 29, 2009

Hula Babe Anyone?

I've always thought of exercise as something weird that other people do...I'll sit in the porch and watch thank you. But then I discovered yoga last year and it felt like coming home, and gave me a new point of view. Exercise does not have to equal a stinky noisy gym, or running until pants wetting is imminent, or any of the other associated memories I have.

So I've been thinking about what else a 50-something could try that would be fun first and exercise second. Did you know that hula hooping has come into the 21st Century? So I've ordered a starter kit from Hoopnotica and am looking forward to owning my very first hula hoop of any kind. I also joined FaceBook yesterday...but I can't see that developing into anything interesting any time soon. There were only 26 people in my graduating class.

Edited to add the next day: I made Hoopnotica in the second paragraph a link for those that has asked about getting their own hoop. I ordered the beginners kit which comes with a well recommended set of DVD's, a hoop, and a ebook. It is 20% off plus I also did a web search for Hoopnotica coupon and got another $5.00 off.

I do have a yoga instructor but I do most of my yoga with DVDs and it works very well for me because it isn't very often I can make a specific class time. So I figure hooping will be the same. Hope that helps! I'd love to have a hooping buddy.

Wednesday Thankies
The World Wide Web of information at our finger tips

April 26, 2009

How the Mighty Hath Fallen

I've been so busy, when a client asked if I'd redo the buttons on her beautiful silk blouse I lept at the opportunity to get needle and thread going, even if for a humble project.

On my hope-to-get-it-done list this week is trim the edges on my One-Block-Wonder and get started on the borders, and definitely get my new-and-improved working wall for my 5th wheel installed. Surely I can eke out that much time? Think?

Sunday Thankies
Popping in on the last two hours hours of a three day yoga retreat...better some than none
Seed Packets
Quality time with people I care about

April 22, 2009

Hey chick, what's your sign?

Springtime and the young farmer's mind turns once again to ... baby chicks! Ten little black sex-link chicks, home again home again in their little Del's Farm Store donut box; now ensconced in a marvelous 60 year old brooder chamber.

One cool beans improvement is we now have the option of chick feed that has their medicine in it, rather than the messy business of stirring it into their water each day. That will make things a lot more simple for my dear FIL with his short term memory problems.

Wednesday Thankies
Getting to see my Seattle sister-in-law for awhile
All the lawns are mowed
Mark the RV repair guy who does honest work for honest pay

April 19, 2009

WhereYaBeen, WatchaBeenDoing?

Spring has sprung and my commitment to keep my in-laws in their home means the farm goes into full tilt...but the weather has really been glorious for the work~
White wash the fruit FIL planted this when he was 80. Quite optimistic the family said as they smiled behind their hands... he is now 91 and his 30 fruit trees and honey bee apiary there in the back are the pride of his days. And he still gets up on the ladder to prune and trim and thin.
Paint I go around the orchard on the driveway side.
Their little front yard needs mowed of course...and my little doggies love the big Douglas Fir tree for shade.
The asparagas spears are coming up like mad...along with the weeds.
Rob gets a head start on spraying the driveways...weeds are what all farms grow best.
I did get three more candlewick blocks finished in the early mornings and late evenings~
Sunday Thankies
My Health
My Brain
My Legs

April 12, 2009

Looky What I Found!

A picture of the very first results of my virginal immersion into quilting, circa 1970. Way back in my first two blog posts I mentioned The Magazine Page that got me started. Still haven't found the page...but here is the yo-yo pillow, plus a Roman Stripe with feather stitching, one with appliqué work on it, and a green one with a piece of variegated crochet stitched to it. Humble beginnings but like the seed of an apple tree, the fun and wonder have colored my life ever since.

Sharing the spread, may they rest in peace and be waiting for me, Smoky, my first cat as an adult homeowner, and Little Grey, her son. They were both such marvelous clever intelligent companions...

Sunday Thankies
A full table
A full heart
Freedom of thought

April 10, 2009

Faux-Embroidery, or Life Is Short

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, I've been trying to explain pen embroidery in an email, much easier to put some images up! These are a couple of chickens from my Maggie Walker Country Garden quilt. The quilt was such an odd size I choose to finish the blocks individually, each with a different quilting method. I think they look gorgeous this way.
This is a set I tacked together and embellished with western belt buckles, the type that were used on little boys belts back in the day. The Hamburg was hand quilted, the Polish was tied with size 8 DMC floss.
The Japanese Grey Bantam was bound with red and white chicken fabric from a friend in Austria, so I machine tacked with Mettler red machine embroidery thread. I think it came out great and I'd be perfectly happy with a quilt done like this.
Anyway, the point of my post was to show the pen work I did for the breed names. I taped the pattern on my light table, and then traced the lettering with Pigma Pens. For a project like the pen work appliqué embellishment on Little Brown Bird, I used a ultra fine sandpaper under the block so it wouldn't slip and just had at it. Some of the other blocks are shown in this post last spring.

Friday Thankies
It's Friday!
Multiple signs of spring, it really is here!
Fresh oranges and apples year around!

April 5, 2009

Candlewick Summer Spread

My summer candlewick spread is progressing nicely! In fact I've finished three more blocks since I took this photo last week. As designed, these are 17" blocks but there are another couple of inches of muslin around the registration marks for trimming and I may trim them to about 18.5".

The summer candlewick spread this will replace shown in this post last July was done on whole cloth so when the candlewicking was finished the top was ready to use. As mine will have inner seams it needs to be backed so I'll make a quilt back in lighter/neutral colors so they don't shade through and then quilt the layers. I will have to do some samples...the quilting may look very odd to the eye with no batting, but since the point is a summer spread batting is the last thing I want to introduce.

I may also introduce some companionable sashing to the candlewick side. That part is still on the working wall of my mind. If it is successfully executed I think I may do a number of top/back no batting combos. Saves space and money and rather than just one spread for the hot months I'd have a variety. After all, my quilts are intended to be used. Used up is even OK, I can always make more and I have lots of cold weather quilts.

Palm Sunday Thankies
My Rob will be home for a little while today!
70 degrees!
Someone to eat a meal with!

April 3, 2009

Cat Quilting

I was trimming blocks on the dining table at our 5th wheel...and our beautiful cat Conway was the recipient of some of the fly away Orts. I cringe when I see Eleanor Burns throwing scraps over her shoulder. I wonder if she really does that away from the camera...

Looks like he was working up the energy to think about doing something when he went to sleep doesn't it.

Are there any two more go-together things than cats and quilts?

Friday Thankies
Work is finished for the week
Our clean clear safe water that shows up at the tap like magic