Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Getting ready

Only 4 more days and I will be on my way to St. John's, New Foundland. All my teaching things are ready, but I discovered, that a carry-on with the maximum of 22 pounds only holds part of it. By the time I found this out, it was too late to send it away, but I'am lucky again. I will be traveling with 4 friends from our guild and one of the girls had decided to go without carry-on and she has gracefully offered to take my second one. Another lesson learned. Blast-of time will be 5 a.m on Sunday. Laurence will drive me to Waterloo, where I will be meeting the others. I'm busy getting meals ready for hubby. Here out in the country it is not quite as easy to go to town for a meal. Usually that also means a general clean-up and that all takes too much time, so home made meals it will be.The weather has not been the greatest, very windy and cold. We even had some frost last night, but most of my plants survived. When I did some weeding last night I found this young robbin following me. I quickly got my camera, but by that time it was not interested anymore and hopped/flew away. I did get some quilt related work done. The sashiko on this piece I did last year as a practice piece. And it sat in the corner till I decided I needed some practice in machine quilting. Finished putting the binding on today. Another one, similar, but with sashiko cranes will be next.
It is only a little over 5 weeks till the wdding of our son, so there will be no big projects till after the big day.
I will be away all of next week, so it will be close to 2 weeks before I will be back. But by then I sould have lots of news and pictures to share.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Back home again

Last week I spend a few days on Manitoulin Island. To get there was fun. First a sunny drive to Tobermory and then on the ferry. The Chi Chemaun has 2 levels and I ended up on the top. It was a little nerve wrecking to drive up the ramp. twice as bad to drive down, but everything went well. The first person I met on the boat was a member of my guild, who was born on the island and who has still a lot of family there. And...I found out, that I would be staying at her cousin's place. It's a small world. Would this not make a beautiful landscape. This lighthouse is on Flowerpot Island, well known for its orchids. It was a little early for that yet. Next year I'm invited back to the guild and then I will go when the ochids on the island are in bloom,we hope.
The trunkshow and workshop went very well and I had a great time staying at Vivian.

She showed me around the island and that's where I found this lighthouse. All in all a very enjoyable time.
Now it is back to getting ready for my trip to St. John's for Quilt Canada. All 3 of my workshops are full and that means making 60 kits. I'm almost ready. I will travel with 4 other members of my guild, and each promised to take some of my "stuff" along,m so I did not have to send anything ahead. Yesterday was guild meeting. I picked up the quilted postcard quilt and was able to show that one. The finishing will have to wait till after the wedding. I also took along the Mariner Compass quilt. I finally got the binding sewn down. For some reason it was very hard on my fingers. Might have to do with the piping. There was more fabric you had to sew through. Outside it is cold. My annuals are still in their little pots in the garage. But better weather is in the forecast. In the meantime I enjoy my orchids inside.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Spring colors

One year, when Jeanette worked in a garden centre, she came home with a small crab apple tree for mother's day. For the next few years it grew and bloomed. As the years passed it continued to grow, but quit blooming. So last year I got tough and trimmed about halve of the branches. And would't you know...... right now it blooms profusely and has thousands of pale pink flowers. That with the yellow, red and mauve tulips and multi colored pansies makes for a cheery look outside. 2 sides of the mariner compass quilt have the binding sewn on. I never got used to using a thimbel and with the piping and the binding on this quilt I find it very tough going. My fingers turned raw and started to bleed, what is not good with a quilt with white pieces. I folded it up and put it away for a few days. My goal is still to finish it before our guild meeting next week.
Instead I worked on my block for our guild challenge. We received the 2 fabrics on the left and were told to make a 12 inch block with a 2 inch border out of the dark fabric. The back had to be a dark flannel and it should be hand or machine quilted. We were not to cut it to size. That would be done later. I like this block so well, that I'm thinking of using something similar for a new quilt for the guest room.
But first I will be gone for a few days. The car is packed and tomorrow morning I will drive to Tobermory and take the ferry to Manitoulin Island. Tomorrow evening I will give a trunkshow for the guild and then on Friday a workshop. Saturday I will be home again.
Now I just hope I will not get sea sick. I always worry about that since I was deadly ill during a crossing from Hoek van Holland to Dover in my younger days.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


Somewhere in my travels I bought the Piping Hot Binding Tool. I never needed to use it,but it always hung in the same spot. Finally, last week, I took it down to read the instructions. I did read them carefully and then the bag disappeared. Nowhere to be found, so the likely culprit was our visitor for the week, Bernie, the Bernese Mountain dog. But looking in her eyes I changed my mind. She could not have! But I wanted to use it, but where to find another one?I started to phone the local quilt stores, but nobody had it.
Then I remembered where I had bought it. A quick look on the computer gave me a phone number and I was in business. The lady has a business out of her home and she just happened to have one more of these tools. And she lives in Guelph. And better yet, I had to take the dog back to the rightfull owners that day and would drive right through town. So I was back in business. I made the piping, what was a breeze. And this morning I took the quilt to church. I used 4 large tables to lay it flat and the squaring of the quilt was done in no time. This afternoon I sewed the piping on first and now I'm working on the binding.
And I have to say, that it is easier than I expected. The handwork will take some time, because it is a large quilt. And I have no worries about it not being ready for the wedding. A good feeling!The second set of socks is finished. They fit me just right. But who ordered these colors?
And the lost still has not been found.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Finishing projects

Blogger has made life hard for me the last few days. Either the pictures won't load up or everything disappears. So I will give it another try.
Yesterday morning I got a call, that he Mariner Compass quilt was ready for pick-up. Somebody had to go for parts to Elmira anyway, so I picked it up right away. And I'm very pleased. The quilting is very well done. All it needs is a binding. I managed to buy a piece of red batik, what matches and that will be used for piping. Then the binding will be green. I have never tried piping, but I did get a tool and I will give it a try. I have some time, because the wedding is not till the beginning of July, but it is a large quilt so the hand stitching alone will take some time.
The postcard quilt is all together. It was a tour de force to get it this far, but the worst is behind me. The next step is the marking of the border. Once ready I will take it to my friend Carol's place and she will do the quilting with the help of some guild members. It is not done by any means, but it is getting there. It cannot be folded, so today I will pick up a carpet roll at the local flooring store. It will be wrapped with plastic and then a piece of muslin. This way it is much easier to transport.
When I grew up in the north of Holland it was a sport to go out early in the spring to try and find the first "kievit's egg. The first in the country would be presented to the queen, the second to the provincial official etc. We loved to go out with our long pole. We needed that to jump over the ditches in between the fields. Often we came home soaking wet and guaranteed without eggs. I never did find even one. Till last week.
On Friday I went to the bush to look for flowers. It was a little early for that, but on my way home through an old cornfield I looked down and there it was, not even a foot from my boot. A little hollow with 4 killdeer eggs. Finally I had found my eggs and I did not even have to use my pole to jump the ditches!