Monday, October 30, 2017

Thrifting Fun on the Cape

On Saturday, I drove down to the Cape with a friend to meet up with seven other ladies to spend the day thrift shopping. Our caravan of three cars headed to shops in the Yarmouth area.

It was a perfect weather day, but unfortunately, there was no foliage color down south either though I did manage to find some touches of autumn.

What were the treasures found? Pam came home with two small, painted tables. Another bought a solid wood rocking horse and a rocking chair for her grandson. Others came home with new jackets, coats,  and even a nifty pair of sleek black leather pants.  Jewelry, glassware, and all sorts of other items were found. It was fun to see what caught others' eyes, and of course, there was always a group of encouraging advisors.

What did I come home with you ask? This is Tommy Leafowitz, a Boyds Bear. I don't collect bears, but his leaf decorated olive green overall outfit was just too cute.  I already had this wooden bench and tiny pumpkin, so I thought it would be a cute fall decoration. 

The purple silk tie will go in my stash for crazy quilting. The glass boot mug may hold flowers  on my sun porch table next summer. I love the six pumpkin colored napkins and the old fashioned boot. It's narrow enough to sit on a windowsill to hold flowers or on my table to corral pens and pencils. It was made in 1973 and has the maker's name on the bottom.

Finally, I  had to rescue this cute little guy in one of the storefront windows. After all, I wouldn't want him to melt! :-)

Total purchases for me . . . under twenty dollars; a day spent thrifting with friends . . . priceless.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

A Day of Quilting

Well . . . it was supposed to be a full day of quilting on Friday with my friend Laurel. The morning started off well. Laurel worked on a pillowcase and the binding on this quilt for her granddaughter who recently turned three. There are two matching hearts for each of the colorful fabrics.  I continued working on the Halloween wall hanging with the zillion pieces that I mentioned in an earlier post.  Though it won't be completed for this Halloween, I am determined to get it done.

Easily distracted . . . by noontime, we decided to head to Hull where a fabric store, Fabritique, is closing. It's sad to see, but the owner does intend to continue vending at quilt shows.  She features fabrics from around the world.

We had a quick lunch at the Salt Water Diner which is near Fabritique, then we headed back to my house after a short detour to the new Osprey Overlook Park in East Weymouth as Laurel had not yet seen it. In early September, the osprey fly to South America to spend the winter. According to one of the signs, this flight takes just two to three weeks. They'll return next spring to have their babies in May and June. There are a number of nesting platforms along the marsh waiting for them.

We also spotted these interesting mushrooms which had popped up in the grass.

We might not have accomplished as much as we could have, but that's okay as there will be a next time.

For some issues I didn't post these photos from a recent quilt show opening. Members of the Herring Run Quilt Guild currently have quilts on display in the gallery at Thayer Academy in Braintree.

As you enter, the first quilt you see is Maribeth's "Julie's Blooming Nine Patch."

 Here's Laurel beside  her "Petunia."

Edith was away, but her "Lulu" was also on display. There was a wide range of quilts which made for an impressive display of talent. I didn't ask permission so I can't show you some of the others. The gallery is open for visitors during school hours only. There is a number posted on the door which when you call will summon a security person to let you in for a visit.

I have two pieces in the show: "Waiting for Lovers" and

 "Steady As They Go." Here is my friend Kathy who took the photo which was the inspiration for this quilt. Her parents have been married for 72+ plus years. What a blessing!!!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Happy Halloween Quilt

At our last Herring Run Quilt Guild show in 2016, a member displayed a Halloween themed quilt based on Tula Pink's City Sampler 100 Modern Quilt Blocks. (Note: The book does not come spiraled bound, but I brought it to Staples to have that done as it makes it much easier to work with that way.) I was so taken by the member's quilt that I decided to make one, too, as I had lots of Halloween-themed fabric left over from my little cousin Miss T.'s quilt. My original plan was to create a wall hanging, but I got carried away and it grew and grew. I even added a six inch piano key border that made it a twin bed size quilt.

 Each corner features these stylized black cats.

Here's the yummy backing fabric. Don't you wish candy corn was really a vegetable. . .


I already had more than enough Halloween decorations, but I couldn't resist this decoration on sale at Michael's. It's the sophisticated touch of elegance for which I am known. :-)   :-)   :-)

And, of course,  any room or sun porch needs a touch of purple . . .

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Cranberry Harvest

This was a Stoughton quilting weekend, but I only really spent time there on Friday. Yesterday, I attended the 12th birthday party for my cousin's triplets. It doesn't seem possible that they are that old. Today after church, I decided it was too beautiful to spend the day inside quilting, so I headed to Plymouth in hopes of photographing a bog being worked. I thought I would share some photos in case you have never seen a cranberry harvest.

First, the bog is flooded and then a machine not unlike a giant eggbeater is driven through the bog to release the berries from the bushes. The berries float to the surface creating a magnificent crimson carpet. That probably occurred yesterday. When I arrived on the scene this morning, a worker was pulling a very long band through the bog encircling and pulling together the berries. 

Here's my favorite image of the day.

Then the trucks are brought up and a machine siphons the berries up. The "separator"  spews the twigs and leaves into the pickup truck and the cranberries into the long truck.

It's fascinating to watch the whole procedure. I was also surprised to see so much gorgeous color appearing along the highway. Hopefully, the color will deepen here on the south shore. 

On another note . . . if you have emailed me and not received a response it is because my email is messed up. I can receive email, but my responses are not going through. My responses appear in the sent folder, but no one receives them. Comcast is supposedly working on it. Yesterday while dealing with a level two technician, suddenly over 10,000 previously deleted emails dating back to 2014 appeared in my laptop inbox and about 700 on my iPad. Yikes!!! But . . . they're working on it. . . fingers crossed . . .

Thursday, October 12, 2017

A Workshop with Betty Busby

On Tuesday and Wednesday, I attended an amazing workshop with fiber artist Betty Busby offered by the Quilters Connection Guild . This gifted artist from Albuqueque, NM, presented a full, rich workshop that allowed participants to explore painting both non-woven and traditional fabrics. She would explain and illustrate a particular technique and then we were given time to try it. Here are some of my pieces.

These leaves have streaks of gold Lumiere paint which makes them appear to glow in real life. 

We were shown a short slide show of her work each afternoon, and she discussed how each piece was created.  Her work is wonderful and may be viewed here on her online gallery. 

If a workshop with Betty Busby is offered in your area, I would encourage you to attend. You will have a wonderful time and come away with enough ideas to explore to keep you busy for a very long time. :-)

Betty Busby will be the featured speaker at the next meeting of the Quilters Connection guild on Monday, October 16th at 7:00 at the Bentley University Executive Dining Room, LaCava Center,  175 Forest Street, Waltham. There is a $10.00 fee for guests.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Apple Picking Time

It's apple picking time! On Wednesday, which was an early release day for my little cousins, I went with my cousin Kristin and her two girls, her friend and her two girls, and her friend's mom to  Honey Pot Hill Farm in Stow, MA. It was a gorgeous afternoon and a good time was had by all.

Yesterday at our Herring Run Quilt Guild meeting my friend Edith showed this adorable quilt, and I asked if I could share it with you. The pattern, "Grow Up Tall Giraffe," is available from its designer at Bean Counter Quilts where you will find many other cute patterns. I might be sticking my long neck out, but I'm betting the new parents will be beyond thrilled.

Autumn color is quite sparse here south of Boston. We need a few cold nights to start the change. These photos are from my garden.

This past week I've been new car shopping and have test driven many possibilities. Since I only buy a car about every ten years, I study up, watch all of the youtube reviews, and read everything I can on each model. Car buying can be stressful, so I like to be as prepared as I possibly can be. I am pretty sure now what will be my next car. Also, this week I am excited to be attending a two-day fiber arts workshop taught by Betty Busby from New Mexico. The workshop is through the Quilters Connection guild in Waltham of which I am a member. Yes, I am a member of three guilds; Crosstown Quilters being the third. If interested, I believe each of these guilds has a few spots open for new members.

It has been a week since we learned of the unspeakable mass shooting in Las Vegas with so many lives lost and so many lives changed forever. It's difficult to stay positive when we are continually bombarded by news that makes us sad, angry, and disheartened.

I wish us all a week without stress and days filled with simple pleasures.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

I Love My Retirement!

Don't get me wrong; I totally loved my job as an eighth grade English/Language Arts teacher, but this retirement gig is tons of fun! Since this blog acts as my journal, let me tell you about my week.  On Monday, I had lunch with a group of friends at the Common Market in Quincy. The conversation is always lively when this group of former teachers gets together. On Tuesday, there was a meeting of the Crosstown Quilters. On Wednesday, I had a flute lesson and dinner with my quilting buddies. On Thursday, I headed north with three friends to pick up our quilts at Dancing Crane Quilting in Contoocook, NH.  Contoocook is close to Henniker, so of course, we visited one of our favorite quilt shops, Quilted Threads, where I picked up a pattern and some wool for an upcoming project. 

This is a Stoughton quilting weekend, and I spent my time prepping a Halloween fused applique wall hanging with, I swear, a zillion pieces. Some ladies laughed when I said that I hoped to get it done in time for Halloween. They wondered which year I intended that to be. On Friday, my friend Laurel and I had gone to Lincoln, RI to Ryco Creative Sewing Center where there was a fabulous selection of fabric, and I found among other things just the perfect candy corn fabric to back my Halloween quilt. My credit card was smoking by the time that I left :-) We also enjoyed a yummy lunch at a new restaurant for us in nearby Cumberland, RI. When you visit Rycos be sure to stop for a bite to eat at Davenports.

This brings me to today. I attended early Mass, but returned after the 12:00 Mass for a blessing of the animals. Emma, wearing her game-day shirt, happily greeted all the other dogs and their owners.

She was curious about what was happening, but here's the amazing thing . . . she didn't bark even once; if you know mini schnauzers, you realize just how amazing that was! She seemed to enjoy the whole brief ceremony even when she was sprinkled with the holy water. :-)

 Then it was time to settle in and watch the game.

Emma's attention quickly waned and a nap was soon underway.

As soon as the game is over, I'm heading over to Stoughton where our group quilts to use the large tables to layer my Halloween quilt.

It was quite a week; I wonder what's on my schedule for this week? I hope the week ahead is full of happy moments for you.