Yukon wild

Yukon wild
Wild rose

Sunday, September 24, 2017

A lovely weekend

I had an extremely stressful week last week.  Monday and Tuesday were long days taken up with back to back meetings at work that were not fun.  Then I had a ton of work to do the rest of the week and hubby was away from Wednesday on.  Although I like having time to myself, I was too tired to do anything constructive with it and my diet deteriorated rapidly as I didn't have to cook for him.  So I was ready for some fun this weekend!

On Saturday a group of us got together to do some talking and scarf dyeing and a little bit of sewing.  It was supposed to be a lot of sewing but the talking took over 😂.  I took a few pics of the scarf dyeing in process.  This is the same method we learned about in Saskatchewan in the spring.  You can read about the process here

I wasn't happy with how my scarf turned out, so I redyed it this morning. 

I didn't get a great photo of the overall scarf, but here are a couple of closeups that give you an idea of the detail.

Seeded Eucalyptus 

Raspberry leaves

This afternoon we went for a bike ride to the cranberry patch with our neighbours.

And we came home with lots of cranberries.  Here are a couple of trays ready to go in the freezer.

So all in all it was a very pleasant weekend and I feel ready to tackle work again this week.  Only three days and then I am off to a four day retreat.  YAY!  So I'll see you hopefully next weekend with some sewing updates to show. 

I hope your weekend was equally as relaxing and fun.


Sunday, September 17, 2017

September Friday Night Sew In Report

I had my usual tired Friday - I think that is going to be my new name for it - like thirsty Thursday, then there is tired Friday.  Not that I hit the bar or the put on Thursday! 😇

But even though it was a tired night I managed to work a bit on a hand work project.  DD # 2 is coming for a visit in November and I realized that there are two projects that I want to finish before she arrives - not that they are gifts for her, but just so I can show them off to her.  She is my biggest critic of the fact that I don't finish things.  Well I do, but she is sceptical about the number of projects I finish compared to the number I start.  Probably correctly.

Anyway I can't show this project because then she'll know as she does read my blog.  But I took a little sneaky picture.  Tee hee...

And then today I managed to finish sewing the four patch purple squares for En Provence.

And remember this photo that I showed you a couple of weeks ago...

A lot of you bravely guessed what it is, and lots of you were close or spot on....  it is a milk crate full of potatoes that were in a cold room in my friend's basement, for who knows how long, trying their darnedest to grow.  Here's what they looked like when I tipped them into the compost pile.

Please be sure to drop by Wendy's blog to see what everyone else got up to for Friday Night Sew In.


Saturday, September 9, 2017

Ugly Pincushion

It was hard to pick an "ugly" pincushion, because really I like them all and they all have a little fond memory of some kind for me.  But this one got the honor of being the ugly duckling.  My friend Nancy gave me this pincushion.  She also gave me my little chair pincushion that is made out of a tin can.  So you can see the style of pincushion she likes, even though she doesn't really sew much and doesn't have a pincushion collection of her own.

The reason I don't like this one as much is because it is so small, and I don't really have a spot to put it where it would be useful.  So it is being useful today, as my ugly pincushion!

And I think this is my last post for the Perfectly Pleasing Pincushion Parade hosted by Ida at My Sister Made Me Do It.  Go and check out the other entries - they are all really fun!


My Pincushion Parade

Today I am linking up with My Sister Made Me Do It to show off the rest of my pin cushions.  Last year I posted quite a few of my pin cushions for the parade  You can see them here.  But I realized I missed a few, and maybe I've acquired a couple of new ones since last year.  😉

I bought this beautiful swan from someone online.  She had acquired a lot of old china pieces like this and had decided to make them into pincushions and sell them to raise money for charity  I think I paid $10 for this though, so I'm not sure how much she would have raised.  Unfortunately I can't remember who she was.  The pin cushion is very elegant and sits on the windowsill watching out for wandering animals in the yard.

This is another one that I acquired and I can't remember who from.  I think it was in a swap or a giveaway.  Isn't that terrible - that I can't remember, I mean.  This one is felted wool and I like it quite a bit except that it is only about an inch thick.  I have it hung on my cork board and it does get the odd pin or needle stuck in it.

I got this one last year at retreat.  A little fairy came through in the night and lift it on my table.  I made the decorative pins using buttons and tiny glass headed pins.  They aren't really practical for using but they are cute.

This last one was made for me by Lynn from Ontario.  It is pretty but very shallow so it is a decorative rather than useful pincushion.

And here are all of my pincushions out on parade.

Except that there is one more.... The ugly pincushion.  He gets a post all on his own....😍


Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Perfectly Pleasing Pincushion Parade

I said I was going to make a new pincushion for this parade.  And I got an idea in my head and even though I didn't necessarily want to make it, it wouldn't go away.  So I made the pin cushion yesterday.  I hope this pincushion is not offensive to anyone.  I am trying to think of the right way to describe it and all I can think of is commemorative, but maybe memorial would be a better word.

I have no idea why I was so fixated on making a pin cushion to remember what has been going on in Texas the last few weeks.  I have no connection to Texas, other than my friendships with Irene and Ida.  My brother and sister-in-law lived in Dallas for about five years before they moved to Seattle.  And I drove through Texas once, back in 1975.  I was on my way to a year of travel in Central and South America with two companions.  We were going to cross into Mexico at Brownsville, Texas but one of my friends fell in a big pit in the middle of the night and broke his leg.  He had to fly home to Canada.  My other friend and I decided that we wouldn't take our car into Mexico and we drove on to Phoenix where we left it at a friend's house.  So I probably spent two days in Texas and the time was spent travelling.  Hardly an experience that created huge bonds.

But hey I needed to make this pincushion and here it is in the parade.  It isn't too beautiful, but it is good and sturdy.  Stuffed with fibrefill but I put a little pouch of lead shot in the bottom of it so it is sold and stands up the way it is supposed to.

I'm linking this up with the Perfectly Pleasing Pincushion Parade at My Sister Made Me Do It.

And I'm off to see the parade of pin cushions!


Sunday, September 3, 2017

Friday Night (and Saturday and Sunday) with Friends

I hope everyone had a fun filled FNWF.  We did here! I was terrible at taking pictures and the ones I did take aren't flattering so I am not going to post them.  But I really did sew with some in person friends as well as all my cyber buddies.  Lori was working on a UFO that she figured was about 17 years old.  Marg had made a large wall hanging of a rearing stallion using the fusible web method and she was busy stitching around the edges.  Linda started a new quilt and got four blocks done.  And Connie, who is a bit of a new quilter, made a set of four placemats with matching coasters.

On Friday night I finished stitching down the binding on my postage stamp quilt and sewed on the label.

I'm keeping the details of this quilt for a full post sometime so you're only getting a peek.  😊

And then I spent the rest of the weekend working on En Provence.  First I cut and sewed 169 of these two patch purple blocks to make a total of 336 of them altogether.

And then I turned about half of them into 4 patch blocks.

But then I had to say "enough" because I wanted to at least make one more block.  Four of the sixteen done!  But I still have to make a whole lot of the joining strips and then there is the border to put together.

And there you have my weekend's worth of sewing.  It seems like so little in retrospect.  😞

Here is a little quiz for you.  Can anyone guess what this is?

 Tee hee! 😃  Head on over to Cheryll's blog to see what everyone else got up to for Friday Night with Friends.


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Upcoming Fun

In case you have been wondering.... I am still around... We have had such a busy summer with visitors for about two months straight and lots of outdoor time.  My quilting has suffered.  But September is coming, along with winter.  We have cool temperatures and the leaves are turning.  And quilting is ramping up.  Friday Night With Friends is on this Friday and I have a quilting weekend with in-person friends Friday through Sunday as well.  Then our big fall four day retreat happens at the end of September.

And I will be joining up with Ida and Irene's Perfectly Pleasing Pincushion Parade again at My Sister Made Me Do It.  It starts on September 4th, so get your pincushions ready to strut their stuff!  I have threatened to make a new pincushion for this year's parade and I even have my idea formulated!

I have managed to do a little bit of stitching over the summer - for instance keeping up with my sewing obligations for the Inchy Hexagon Flower Swap.  Here are the hexies I made for Gail, my August swap partner.

And I finally blocked and hemmed the woven rag placemats that I made in a weaving course last fall.

And there have been some exciting times in our yard...

Aren't these guys cute!!  Here's a close up of the twins.

I passed my 10 year blogging anniversary in June and I have been meaning to do a giveaway to celebrate.  So stay tuned....

I hope you will join in some of the upcoming fun with Irene and Ida for the Pincushion Parade and with Cheryl for Friday Night with Friends.


Monday, August 7, 2017

Friday Night with Friends Report and Some Lovely Mail

I did not get anything done on Friday for Friday Night with Friends.  Friday nights after a week of work are hard, but I can usually rally myself to at least make a hexie flower.  But not last Friday.  I was tiiiirerd and I made dinner and went to bed.  But I did get a few things done earlier in the week.

A couple of hexie flowers for my July swap partner - Jane in the UK.  These were off to her in the mail on July 31st - squeaking under the wire!

And another hexie flower for my Grandmother's Flower Garden.  I was really obsessed with using the six pieces that make up the inner petals of the flower.  It turned out a bit odd looking but at least I have that obsession out of my brain now!

This weekend DD # 3 came out so I could help her sew.  She signed up to make a block for a baby quilt for a friend who is having a baby.  She has a sewing machine and says she wants to learn to sew, but pinning her down to actually do some sewing is often difficult.  And this block was to be made using fusible applique to make a picture - definitely not my favourite type of quilting.  But she got it done with her own design and a lot of instruction from me.  And it turned out quite cute!

We have had what for us is really hot weather for about a week now.  We have had lots of company with my granddaughter and her friend staying here for three nights of the week while they take their Bronze Medallion course, our friends from Nelson, B.C. visiting and of course DD # 3.  We have been enjoying getting out in the boat, splashing in the water and soaking up the sun!

And today I had a lovely surprise at the post office.  Quite a while ago I won a book from Raewyn at Stitching Farm Girl.  But it took her a while to get it in the mail and I had temporarily forgotten that it was coming.  But there in the mail today was a parcel pour moi!!

Along with the book Raewyn sent a lovely hand towel with an appliqued strip of Kowhai - a New Zealand flower.  The bird on the card is a fantail and the same bird appears on the pen.  Chocolate with plum and almond in it - yum!  And of course a quilting themed book for me to read. This was such a fantastic parcel to receive.  Thank-you so much Raewyn!

That's all for today.  I will be sure to check on at Cheryl's blog to see what everyone else got up to for Friday Night with Friends.


Saturday, July 22, 2017

July FNSI and Summer Travelling

I managed to squeak in on sign-ups for Friday Night Sew In for July.  And I actually managed to sew a little bit too!  I have a third block done for En Provence.  Not the side panels, just the block.

The reason I just made it to FNSI signups is because we were away on a trip.  We went to Atlin, British Columbia.  While we were there we attended a music festival, where we listened to lots of great Canadian performers.  My favourites were a "girl group" called Sweet Alibi and our own local Declan O'Donovan.

Then we went off on a boat tour of Atlin Lake.  We examined turn of the century cabin remains with beautiful gold and silver enhanced wallpaper...

Visited the Llewellyn glacier...

Saw lots of goats and sheep, but only three bears...

And even got to do a bit of sailing...

But we also spent a lot of time watching it rain... it rained for seven out of ten days that we were out.

But it is sunny today and we are going out again overnight.  I have to go back to work on Monday, so I have to enjoy as much of my vacation as possible.  

I hope you had a great Friday Night Sew In and have fun checking out what everyone else did.


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

A day filled with boats

Today was definitely a boat day and I didn`t  even get to go in one!  In Whitehorse there is a yearly boating race - the Yukon River Quest - 444 miles on the Yukon River.  I haven`t ever done the race and probably never will.

But my hubby did the precursor to this race.  It was called Dyea to Dawson, and involved following the route of the Klondike gold rush from Skagway, Alaska to Dawson City, Yukon.  The first part involved climbing over the mountains, the second part boating through the lake system, past Carcross to the Yukon River then on to Dawson.  They only ran the Dyea to Dawson race for two years.  I think logistics were pretty intense, crossing the border between the U.S. and Canada and getting boats to the place where the water part of the trip started - Bennett Station.  But the River Quest has been going on since 1999.

The start of the race was today and I went down to watch it on my lunch hour.  I know a couple of people who are racing - my God son, Wesley, and an old neighbour, Noreen.  They are both in voyageur canoes.  But with 95 teams in a mass start I didn`t see either of them but I did see Wes`canoe go by.  Here are a couple of photos.

Running to get the boats in the water when the gun goes off.

And they are off!

There were people lining both sides of the river watching the boats take off.  Lots of fun.  There is a tracker on the website too, so I can keep track of how my friends are doing. :)

After this excitement I wandered over to an exhibition that is happening a little further down the riverbank.  There, people are building boats.

This will be a caribou skin kayak.

Sewing the skins together.

This is a river boat.  It will be covered with moose skin.

And a birch bark canoe.

This one will be a dugout canoe.

I have been going by this exhibit every few days watching the progress.  Very fascinating!

That`s all for today.  The only sewing happening was on that caribou skin.  :)


Sunday, June 25, 2017

Saskatchewan Stitches Conference

I am finally getting around to writing a little more about my trip to the Saskatchewan Stitches Conference.  The event took place at St. Peter's Abbey/college/press/farm.  This is an active place!  It is the oldest Benedictine monastery in Canada, established in 1903.  There are only 15 monks here and the average age is 72.  But they still manage to keep the place up and get lots done.  I only saw two of the monks during the time I was there.  Father Demetrius takes care of the guest wing and the Abbott came around occasionally.  Yes there is a college there in the winter months - we got to stay in the dorms/guest wing.  I had a tour of the main building and walked around a bit, but I would have liked to have learned more about the farming.  We did have delicious asparagus from their garden at several meals.  And take a gander at the root cellar in one of my photos below.  this was about 1/4 of it. The press puts out a newspaper called "The Prairie Messenger" but apparently they are going to discontinue it next year.

A very interesting place!  There are lots more pictures and info available on their website.

One of the classes I took was called Eco Dyeing.  We were dying silk scarves using vinegar and leaves.

First the leaves had to be soaked in vinegar water.  The scarves had been washed, dried and ironed and they had to be soaked as well.

Then the leaves get laid out on half of the scarf, in what ever way that is pleasing to you.  However, these scarves turn out the way they turn out, so one can take all the risks they want and may not achieve the results they think they will. :)

The scarf is folded in two so that the leaves are encased between layers of scarf.  Then the scarf is tightly rolled on a stick or a copper pipe and tied in place with string or cord.

Here are our scarves, ready to go in the pot, where they will boil for three hours in vinegar water.

Here are the scarves, all cooked up.  The pot has to be aluminium.

We each had a string with a certain number of knots in it so we would be able to tell the scarves apart.

And time for the big reveal!

Here are the results of my scarf.  Some of the leaves give more colour than others.  I experimented with some leaves that were "unknowns" as far as the amount of colour they would impart and I ended up with some areas with very little colour.  I might redo this scarf.  I need to look at it again with fresh eyes before I decide.

Here is another person's scarf.  She used a lot of oak leaves which give really dark colour.  Hers was on a stick.  Another person used oak leaves and a copper pipe and her oak leaves dyed light brown, rather than dark brown.

This class was a lot of fun and I will definitely be trying this technique at home.  I have already found a large aluminium pot and I am thinking about what leaves I can gather locally to try.  Apparently raspberry leaves give good colour.  Lots of raspberries here!

That's all for this post, but be forewarned, I may be back with more on my classes.  :)