Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A great week for quilts!

This is a little early, but tomorrow morning I will be on my way to the Ottawa area for a trunk show and workshops. This was the trip I had planned last year, but had to cancel due to surgery. It looks like my departure here from the farm means a change of weather. The rain has stopped and we have sunny, hot days. Laurence is busy in the fields and I feel a little guilty for leaving him with all the work. Last week was THE big quilt week for me. On Wednesday,while at the National show in the afternoon I was shown a catalogue and there, right on the front was my quilt!On Wednesday evening we had the award ceremony for the National Juried show and my quilt Memories got first in the original traditional category, what made me very happy. This quilt had been a longtime project and it will be one of a kind. On Saturday was the 45th Mennonite Relief Sale in New Hamburg. We went over on Friday evening, since Laurence had other things to do on Saturday. The quilts can all be seen that evening. They hang over metal frames and are all covered with plastic. On the left is our quilt Plain and Fancy, which was the feature quilt this year. Saturday the quilt auction starts at 8.30. I went early to meet some of the Dutch quilters ,who had the quilt show in Ailsa Craig. Not all could make it, some had a booth to attend to and others had to teach. But if you want to see quilt being sold...this is the place to be. On the first picture of the sale you can see the quilts hanging on the frames on the right. On the left they are still working on making strawberry pies. Strawberries are flown in from California , cleaned, washed ans hulled and used to make pies. The line-up is long and well over a 1000 are sold each year. In the second picture everything has been cleaned up already.Our quilt was the feature this year and sold as number 150. And I'm very happy to tell you that it brought up the top price of the day at $9000. In total the quilts brought up about $120.000. Saturday evening I had an invitation to the banquet held in honor of the Dutch quilters in Ailsa Craig and it was lovely . Some of the food was as I can remember from home, some was Canadian, but it all was delicious. The last days I spend getting ready for my workshops. The kids have moved out. The moving truck came yesterday and they are in their own place. Even Abner, the basset, is gone, so it is very quiet around here today. Will be back late next week.
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Friday, May 27, 2011

Of dogs and quilts

Meet our new house guest, Abner the bassett. Shawn and Emily came back to Ontario very early Wednesday morning with the dog. They will stay here with us till their furniture arrives. They have found a place close by that they can rent till they find a house they like. It all seems to work out. The weather has not improved. Rain and more rain. Now the forecast is, that next week it will be sunny and hot. Better keep our fingfers crossed! The only sunny day this past week was Sunday. That was the day of the airing of the quilts in Ailsa Craig. The morning started out wet and later cloudy, but by early afternoon it was warm and sunny. We made it by mid afternoon and while Laurence was of doing something else I wandered through town to see the quilts. It is a fun way to display quilts,even if they were blowing in the breeze. Most were of a traditional design, but I found this one hanging on a white picket fence and it clearly had been influenced by the work of John Willard. Later I found out, that it was started in a workshop by John. My trunkshow started at 4.30 and I was very relieved, when I found out I could do it in English. The potluck after was very good with a lot of great food. I was too busy eating to take pictures. On Wednesday I went back to see the show and meet some of the Dutch quilters. The quilts were beautiful with quilts in all shapes and sizes.And it was very busy. By that time you could call it already a success I think. I did spend some of my money at the 2 Dutch quilt stores, who had booths there. I loved the red, blue and white fabric Maaike Bakker brought over and I have used the fabrics from DeHaan and Wagemakers before. Both places were doing very well as far as I could see. From there it was to Quilt Canada in London to the opening of the National Juried show. More about that next time. Tomorrow is the Relief Sale in New Hamburg and the feature quilt is Plain and Fancy. Let's hope that the weather will change and we will have sunshine. Our soybeans are still in the bags and it will take a few warm and sunny days before we can get back on the land. Behind the house the lawn looks like a pasture. It has been too wet to mow and with this cool and wet weather the grass just keeps on growing.
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Friday, May 20, 2011

Rain, rain go away

With over 8 inches of rain in just over a week we are not amused! Today was a gorgeous day, but at the back of the house it was too wet to mow the lawn. And it looks like by the time things have dried out, we can expect more rain. We have all our corn in the ground and here and there it is coming up. But all the soybeans are still in the bags. By now Laurence has everything fixed, oiled, greased and whatever else has to be done and he is running out of jobs. Maybe I can get him to do some garden work. At least I can try. But I forgot,tomorrow there is a large auction close by with lots of old John Deere tractors. Nothing can compete with that! I was asked for instructions for the small kimono and as I made this one I wrote down all the steps. But in the end I did not have the right measurements, so I have to try again. The outline of the rabbit I found on the Internet. Since it is the year of the rabbit I used it to make a card for a friend. This time I did some sashiko stitching. The edges have not been finished. I want to use a green thread and there is not enough left. But it is on my ever getting longer list of things to look for at next weeks merchant├Ęs mall at Quilt Canada in London. I hope to go on Wednesday ( with the way the weather looks I should not have any difficulties!) This is what I do when I am bored in the evening. I get some scraps out and make cards. They come in handy as gifts.The top one has a small piece of vintage silk fabric and I did some sashiko on the right. The bottom one has sashiko at the top and some very old shibori at the bottom. I love the little tulips. One more to go. Below is a picture of my first orchid. I bought it about 8 years ago and I knew nothing about them. All I knew is, that I loved the orchids I had seen in California and I had to have one. It bloomed faithfully for a few years and then it started to look tough, so tough that by the time we were moving 2 winters ago I left it on the farm in an unheated kitchen. A few months later the leaves were still green. I took it home,it deserved a second chance. And here we are. The flowers are huge and a beautiful color. The leaves are better, but still nothing to brag about. In a few days I will meet the Dutch Quilters, who have arrived in Ailsa Craig. I will give a trunk show on Sunday afternoon, in Dutch. At least I will try. When I speak to my family in Holland it is always in Frisian and my Dutch is very rusty. I will have lots of news next time around.Posted by Picasa

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Weeds....and me

I hate twitch grass! As soon as the flower beds start to look nice I can see the shoots coming up. And I have learned over the years, that ignoring it just makes it worse. So the last few days have been spend pulling as many weeds as I could find. I feel like I'm ahead of the game, if only for a short time. We have been very busy outside. The corn has all been planted and as soon as we have a sunny day again we will start with the soybeans and then later the white beans. The daffodils look great this year. I bought 200 bulbs 11/2 years ago and this year they put on quite a show. My plan is to get another 100 this fall.
This morning bright and early I went to Moorefield, where we had the spring sale of our horticultural society. I brought some plants, but came home with more. There are a few empty spots that I can fill up. From now on I just have to stay away from anything to do with garden plants. The beds are full and really I do not need any more work. But it is so much fun!
Quilt related projects will have to wait for some rainy days. But the busy time for shows is coming up, starting tomorrow. In the afternoon is the official opening of the Grand National Show. And then the week after we will have Quilt Canada in Londond ( I took my entry for the National Juried Show in a few days ago) And the Quilt show in Ailsa cRaig with the Dutch quilters. I will be giving a trunk show next Sunday afternoon for the Dutch quilters. That means that it has to be done in Dutch and it has been a while!
I'm getting ready for my trip out east in the beginning of June. More about that later.
My last entry was a while ago, but we had some problems with the computer, lost hydro for most of a day and with Shawn around access is difficult in the evenings.
But by next Thursday ( guild is on Wednesday) I should have lost of quiltery things to show you