The Quilt Arrived at its New Home!

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In November 2006, one of the members of an online Yahoo group I belong to was diagnosed with breast cancer. Within days of her telling the group, 16 stitchers were busy stitching squares for a comfort quilt – just something to let her know that we held her in our thoughts throughout her treatment and recovery.   She received the quilt today, and posted to the group about how loved she feels when she looks at the quilt.    We all hope that she continues to feel cared for and appreciated during the rest of her recovery 🙂

Wash Day

It is a very rainy day today – my rainbarrels are full and I have set the runoff to the street – everything will be crisp, clean and very wet tomorrow!  My first thoughts this morning were of Tom Bombadil’s wife (a lovely Tolkien character) and her wash day.  I will spend the day catching up on some chores around the house and maybe get to the pool to do some lengths – I haven’t swam in about 3 weeks – May has simply been too hectic!

I am delighted to report that my veggie garden is coming up – I am like a child – have to go check every 2 hours to see how tall the peas are and if one more zucchini has sprouted – lol.  I am tickled with how well it is doing tho – this is the first year we have put in a veggie garden and I am looking forward to fresh salads and tomatoes, and corn come the fall.  I planted asparagus this week – somehow waiting 2 years to harvest seems like a long term investment!

 Last week was a busy week for finishing things too.  I am very happy to report that my long term quilting project is on its way to its new home.  I finally made up my mind about the embellishments, sewed on the binding and a signature square, and said enough.  Pics will be up when I get word that it has arrived safely.  I spent a day making couch pillows for another online friend – these were fun to do – even tho my sewing machine was not too happy with the heavier weight of fabric.  It needs to get used to it – I have a bunch of upholstery weight totes planned for the coming month!

I should finish my mother’s shawl this week – only 4 more repeats to go and then the borders.  I am at the point where all I want to do is knit and finish it – lol – so nothing else gets done. 

Rollercoaster

May has been a rollercoaster of a month so far.  And while everyone needs a little excitement in their lives, I think this month has gone a little too far!

May began with my wonderful 4 days away in Victoria.  Could not have asked for a better start.  I came  home to a week of rehearsals with my 8 yo DD as she prepared for her ballet show.  So DH took her to rehearsal on Sunday evening, and to the dress rehearsal on Tuesday evening while I went with 10 yo DS to the orientation for the middle school he will attend this fall.  So far, so good… busy, but good.  Then the washing machine dies, and has to be replaced.  And as I am making lunch for the kids on Thursday there is a knock at the door.  What would you think if the police officer standing at your door asked “Is this the current (insert your surname) residence?”  Yes, it is.  (Insert DH’s first name – then surname) residence?”  Yes, it is.  “May I come in?”  And of course I am thinking that DH has been in an accident………..   “I am sorry to inform you that (DH’s brother’s name) has been found dead in his apartment”.     Okay, now things are not so good 😦  Once all the information has been collected, the officer exits, which leaves it to me to call DH and inform him of his brother’s passing.   He had a sad life, and a sad passing.

Thursday evening is DD’s first ballet show, and she does wonderfully well, despite having been quite upset earlier that day.  Altho this is a lousy pic, you can see what the drum majorette costume looks like 🙂  She performed again on Saturday afternoon, and had the honour of giving her ballet instructor a bouquet of flowers at the closing of the show.  So these are the high points 🙂
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Last week was spent making a “reasonable effort” to find  BIL’s non-existant will, and cleaning out his apartment…… I will leave that to your imagination.  Think low points on that rollercoaster ride.  Whatever free time I had last week went to putting in the veggie garden, trying to get the yard into shape, and ignoring the condition of the house.  And then…… just because this is the way I react to stress, I have come down with a monster chest cold that has drained me of energy, just when I need to get the house and our lives back in order.  Ah well, enough whinging, this too shall pass.

 On the stitching side – I have finished stitching the Button Tree and will post a pic when I have sewn it up.  Last night I finished page 2 of the Ackworth Quaker Friendship book for a RR that I am in – Amanda made a great choice of fibers:
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Only 10 more days in May, including today.  Let’s think positive and imagine all the good things that can happen for the rest of this month!!

And Back Again!

Spring has finally arrived in southern Alberta. The days are warm and sunny – now I just wish the wind would STOP!! Ah well, guess I should be used to it by now. This is what spring looks like in my yard:
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From left to right, those are daffodils, miniature irises, the view of the front yard from the house, checkered lilies, prairie crocus, the side of the house, angelique tulips and clematis, and daffodils and primula in the back yard. Yes, I did put in the field stone walk and bordered all the flower beds with fieldstone, and yes, most of the front lawn is buried and will be an Albertan wildflower meadow – hopefully later this year when all the flowers and grasses sprout 🙂 I am sure all my neighbours think I am absolutely crazy – and they are probably right!  Hmmmm, that fence really could use some paint this year.

I received another lovely gift this week from the birthday exchange I am in – Danielle sent this package:
prezzies from DanielleThe needleroll is simply exquisite – I just love the colors, and she sent three charts from my favourite designers.  Add in some overdyed floss, and I am one happy birthday girl!  Thanks so much Danielle!

 Knitting continues despite the warmer weather.  I have about 3 feet done on my mom’s shawl – so about half way there, and I continue to knit a scarf a week while I watch my kids at tae kwon do.  I knit a blanket while I was in Victoria, and left it for my friends to enjoy.  This is a Wendy yarn called Matisse – I knit until I had finished all but one ball, and then used that last ball to crochet an edging.
Matisse blanket
It is a perfect complement to the wall colour, and I hope it keeps them snuggly warm.

There

I had an absolutely delightful time visiting my good friends in Victoria! While the weather did not always cooperate, we spent time at the beach and walking in the wilder areas of Oak Bay every day. Victoria is simply so lush and green compared to southern Alberta – spring is almost done there while ours is just starting.

Day one included a shopping jaunt in downtown Victoria. We went to the Button and Needlework Boutique – and I was simply amazed by all the gorgeous models they have! I did buy one chart – the Button Tree by Drawn Thread, with the button acc pac – and this will probably be my May tree ornament. We then proceeded to sample and purchase an assortment of green teas at Silk Road – and tho I was sorely tempted by a couple of the tea pots, I left them at the store. Our final stop that morning was the Beehive yarn store – oh my!! What simply gorgeous yarns! After much deliberation I came away with two skeins of Handmaiden silk and wool. This is by Fleece Artist and I simply could not resist the beach colors! I also bought a skein of sock yarn – my friend thought this color would make lovely happy socks and she bought a ball too.   I also bought the pattern for The Tina Shawl by Fiddlesticks – now to find a suitable lace weight yarn for that one!  What a delight to share stashing with someone who enjoyed looking about as much as I did 🙂
stash!

Day two was spent on Anderson Park hill in the middle of a downpour, and searching for sea treasures to take home for my kids. We found sea glass, shells and some lovely sea scoured bones that I think might be from seal or sea lion flippers. That afternoon was warmer – I think we soaked up every bit of sunshine we could as we sat on the warm rocks at the shore!

The morning of day three was spent in the Native plant garden and later on in Oak Bay avenue – we went first to a garden store where I found the dragon I have been searching for for the past three years! This little beauty will sit in the garden bed outside my kitchen window – once I determine a name for her.concrete dragon
She weighs a good 30 pounds, and so it was a bit of work to walk back home with her! After a bite of lunch and some planting, we were off again to the Chinese Cemetary. This has to be one of my favourite spots in Victoria – the history and the view are amazing.

While I very much enjoyed seeing Victoria, shopping and visiting all my preferred spots, the best part of the trip was simply spending time and reconnecting with my friend! Altho it has been 5 years since we were last together, it felt like no time has passed. I am truly blessed to have had the chance to share her life and her family again.

Oh – one more thing. I had carried my new dragon in my brief case rather than risk putting her in luggage.  The security fellow did a double take when hefting my brief case onto the xray conveyor belt. The conversation went like this:
him: Do you have a laptop in here?
me: No
him: Do you have a bottle in here?
me: No
him: Ma’am, what do you have in here?
me: a concrete dragon.
him: I am sorry I asked.