Saturday, January 14, 2017

Another Trip part 2

I won't bore you with all the photos I took while we were together but we did get a couple nice family ones.  

The Old Folks


Four Generations


The Entertainment

A little more than a month before leaving I decided it would be a good idea to have a Christmas apron, better for everyone; because everyone was going to doing kitchen duty at some point, so I went through my stash and started matching up fabrics (sort of) and grabbed the rotary cutter and started cutting. No pattern but I managed to get 12 of them together in every range of sizes from the smallest to the biggest, before leaving.


Count'em! TWELVE reversible holiday aprons. No excuses not to help in the kitchen.

I made 12 holiday (Christmas on one side and Thanksgiving on the other) placemats for the table as well and everybody got to take their placemats home with them.

I made 22 zippered bags and we filled them with gifts. 





This is only a few of them but I can't say enough about the cosmetic/travel bag pattern. Very clear instructions, easily made. Probably doable in 3 hours from start to finish. It is called the Emmaline Retreat bag and comes in 2 sizes. The large one did not have handles but it was easy to add them.
The have a wire frame that inserts in a casing at the top of the bag that enables the bag to open and stay open, making it easy to use and find things. Best of all, it is a free pattern!
The hardware can be ordered at the same site as the Just go to patterns and add the free pattern to your cart like you are buying it, and follow the prompts. You will receive the pdf. pattern in your mail and it's that easy. I can't say enough about this company. Very easy to do business with and the prices are great! She carries an extensive line of purse/bag hardware in many finishes. (I am not affiliated with this company in any way and was not paid to say this.) This is the link...Free Bag Pattern

I thought it might be fun to buy everyone a pair of fun socks and get a group photo. I had no idea just how much it would be. All the socks were in a bag and we just reached in for them. One pair however look like normal socks but when the recipient put them on this is what it looked like when he showed them off...I laughed until my sides hurt. I mean seriously! How did these get by the quality control person?




 The last time we had a family Christmas Mr O and I made a Family Tree from a Scrabble board and tiles  and that was won by a family member and we thought it might be nice to do another scrabble
Thing this year. Here is what we did...




Everybody got a Christmas ornament with their name on it.


Our daughter brought the Christmas tree with all the trimmings so we all got to hang our ornament after she did her magic.

The kids got together and bought Pa and I a beautiful Thank You/Christmas gift. It is absolutely beautiful and I can hardly wait to get home a find the "perfect" place to hang it.


It is Large and so beautiful and all the gears move as the clock is running. I love it! Thanks kids!




There was time for making gingerbread houses, games, making puzzles, sight seeing, skating, snow shoeing, swimming, eating, gift giving and lots of laughs, but the best thing of all was just being together. When it was all over we continued on to Saskatchewan to spend New Years at my sister and brother in law's home.

P.S. for those of you who are wondering about the knitting of the tell tale signs that a quilter has to rip something out and resew, there are usually tiny bits of thread left from the ripping out process; with ripped out knitting, you end up with kinky,curly yarn to have to re-knit with. I had to rip back about 2" of my sock because of dropped stitches. That's what I get for knitting in the car in poor light and trying to sight-see at the same time. 
We travelled home through the U.S. Yes I stopped at quilt shops. What a surprise eh!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Another Trip Around The Sun

Christmas and New Years have come and gone and Here we are in 2017 and I have to tell you it has been a busy month since my last post! I did get to spend a week with my sister and brother. We (my sister and I) had fun baking and cooking and filled her freezer before I left. I don't use that term loosely when I say "filled".  Her freezer was unplugged and empty when I arrived and we used up pretty much all the available space by the time I said goodbye.


Tortieres, chicken pot pies, butter tarts, home made beans, cabbage rolls, meatballs, chinese fried rice...See what I mean! Those few spaces that are not filled in this these pics were filled the next day with sweet cakes and shortbread cookies. With all the shopping, tending on things for my brother to make sure he stays warm this winter, getting him a haircut and last minute gift shopping and wrapping. It was a busy week!
It was so worth it though because Gary is so happy when I visit...he doesn't care if we do anything but sit in the living room he is just happy to have me there. 
Being with family is the most important thing to Gary. Living in a nursing home is not his preference but he cannot live on his own and when he gets to spend time with family that is the highlight of his life. I live almost 2000 km away and another sister lives over 2000 km away in the other direction but Fortunately we have a sister who lives in the same city and Gary gets to visit her 3 times a week so that keeps things on an even keel for him. 



As busy as things were and as hard as we worked, the hardest thing was saying goodbye. There may be a smile on his face but I saw the sadness in his eyes when we brought him back to his room that night. Love you Little Brother!


From there we crossed over to into Michigan and headed West. If you have driven the Northern penninsula in winter, the most interesting thing to see is the snow and the wildlife 
But I chose to work on a knitting project to keep my hands busy and help pass the time. Take a look at these next 2 pics and tell me what you notice...if you are an observant knitter it should be a piece of cake!


After 2 days we crossed back into Canada and at Winnipeg airport we met the first of the family members arriving for our Family Christmas. This would be the first time all 12 of us would be together. 

We had done a bit of shopping, picking up supplies to feed 12 hungry people for a week. When you are starting with empty cupboards at the resort units you need to get lots!
Needless to say we were pretty loaded and we had not picked up any of the fresh fruits and perishables yet!
We had a travel weary grand daughter aboard and there was not much room to stretch out and nap, but hey! Napping over rated anyway.


Life is such an adventure! Within a couple hours we met up with 2 more, then 4 more arrived a few hours after that and slowly by slowly the rooms were filling up. By noon the next day the gang was all there and I was a happy camper! All the chicks were safe in the nest. 
It was really special to have our children and spouses and all our grandchildren with us.


Nanny and Pa with all the grandchildren. It was a Merry Christmas indeed!

Saturday, December 10, 2016


... but I have to tell you I miss the written word. For a while it was all about Instagram...instant message, short and sweet, one after the other after the other after the other. But I have to tell you it just is not like blogging. I miss blogging, and even more I miss my blogging friends. Call me nosy but I miss hearing all about their day or week or what project they are working on or how Grandpa is doing and what you are making for that new grand baby. Yes it is more work, it is more time consuming
 And takes a little more thought to actually form interesting documenting of each subject but so much more rewarding. Sooooo once again I am going to try to get back into the habit of blogging. I don't have a huge following but I do have people saying, "when are you going to blog" or "I miss your blog posts" and that feels good. Call me what you will but I like the compliments and I kind of like knowing I was missed, so Hello! How have you been. I can't even begin to tell you all that has been happening In my world, because #1 I wouldn't have the time to write it, #2 you wouldn't have the time to read it all, and most importantly #3 I can't remember it all! Hey I am no spring chicken you know and I can barely remember what I did yesterday never mind the last 6 months.
I can tell you I have taken several trips. I was back to see my old friend Jenny at Missouri Star Quilt Company, and this time I took a friend with me and we had a ball! We visited Mama Hawks Bakery cafe and it was wonderful! The decor, the staff, and the food. 

The men had a comfy place to sit and wait for us while we shopped, although that was short lived...they decided to go exploring instead and then when we went back the next day for the whole day...yes the whole day from opening to close, so they went golfing and our day flew by, shopping, looking, touching and being inspired by everything we saw around us, so much so that I was inspired to buy certain things and then when I got it home and unpacked it, I couldn't remember what I bought it was information overload and inspiration overload  but it was a wonderful experience shared with a special friend and it was fun. Now I know I said words are important but so are the pictures...and I don't know about you you but I like a blog with pictures!



I have taken a cup of coffee and a snack to my sewing table and I have stood at the counter grabbing a quick bit, I sat on a blanket on the beach eating, but I think this is the first time I have sat on a stool eating lunch at an ironing board. I was definitely a Kodak moment! I saw some great ideas to incorporate into my sewing studio. Mr O has offered to make me a cutting table island on wheels, so that when necessary I can move it out from the wall and of course I want  need storage space under it, I am always kicking my trash can as I move around so I noticed at all the MSQC cutting tables they had a trash container attached directly to the cutting table whic I thought was ingenious! Their tables are modified kitchen islands from IKEA and the trash bin flips out from under the table when needed and it too is from IKEA, I noted it in a photo and put it on my list for my next IKEA stop. 
I cutting table island, and 1 tilt out trash bin. I looked and looked but could not find it at IKEA so I asked, and no one really understood what I was wanting so I pulled out my phone to show them exactly what I was hunting for..."Oh You want shoe storage bins" was their answer to me. Me: "Ummm yeah that's what I meant; tilting shoe storage bins not tilting trash bins, how silly of me!"


All neat and tidy and tucked away...


Tilted out and ready for use...just slide all the remnants and scraps into the TRASH   SHOE bin. I have had one of those RASKOG rolling carts from IKEA for several years now and I have to say I love that as well.
Want to see another great idea?


Isn't this coffee table a great quilt storage/display piece? I love it! It does double duty, clean dust free storage and display. Guess where it came from? Yup! You guessed it...IKEA
Just so you know I am not being paid to say this, I just think it is such a clever idea! My shopping list was getting longer and longer by the minute and my big dilemma was where I was going to put these things if I got them on the way home. You have to understand I do not have easy access to an IKEA store. The closest is 8 hours away and so I try to stop in to make my purchases on my way home.


I had a problem though...and no it was not all my doing...


It was her fault! No! It was her fault!

Oh my we had fun and we hit about four or five more quilt shops after this picture. Thankfully Mr O is an absolute magician when it comes to packing a vehicle and we were able to manage a few Thrift/Vintage Shop  purchases as well...even a bird cage and footstool!
Oh my we can laugh now but it would not have been a funny thing if we had been made to unload at the border crossing back into Canada. 
We had a wonderful week in Branson after this and it was such a great way to celebrate our 46th anniversary with friends. Earlier in the year we had travelled together to San Antonio to celebrate their 40th anniversary, so it really has been a fun time. We live 1000miles apart, and really appreciate the times we get to spend together.
4 days after returning home I had a quilt retreat to attend so it gave me good opportunity to use some of my fabric purchases. You will have to wait until after Christmas to see them though just in case some of the recipients see this post.
I am writing this post from a motel room in Ontario...yes yes I am on the road again! On my way to spend time with a sister and brother for a week, then on to Manitoba. We have book a couple chalets and Mr O and get to spend Christmas with both our children and their spouses and all of our one missing! I am looking forward to this so much!
Afterwards on to Saskatchewan to spend time with another sister and her family then to our daughters' for a week and then we have booked a retreat/spa accommodation for 4 days on out way home to kick back and relax after all the festivities. 
I can't believe the year is almost done. 
There are so many things I could tell you but I might be repeating myself, so I am going to go back and see what my last few posts were about and I will try to get back with a little more news.

You know I was afraid that when I got back to writing I would be out of practice, because you know what they say...if you don't use it you lose it! Our kids are growing up with keyboard skills but their hand writing is atrocious; they can't spell because "spell check" looks after that for them, we hardly need to communicate with words because emoticons and short forms and pictures say it all for us, so I am going back to what I enjoy....words!

Sunday, July 31, 2016


You may remember me saying many times that I need a title before the brain can get motivated to write a blog post. As I go through my day I often have ideas for blog posts that seem to evaporate into the atmosphere by the time I actually get to sit and write. And night time! When I am laying in bed and can't seem to get the mind to shut off or just before falling asleep when I have the most amazing ideas and plans and then for the life of me cannot retreive those fantastic ideas that seem to fade away in the morning light... 
Surely I am not alone with this dilemma. Please tell me that you also write the best poems, plan the most amazing quilts, come up with just the right words for the answer to a friends problem while hovering in that semi concious euphoric state just before nodding off.
By now you are scratching your head saying to yourself, what in the world is this woman getting at? 
Well, when I sat to write I couldn't come up with a title, so in the midst of a texting conversation with a friend, I said, " give me a blog post title will ya" and she did! So this title is brought to you courtesy of Sue! 
She actually said a little more than that but I edited it...writer's prerogative I think. 
In my last post I showed you a few of the things I have been messing around with that includes fabric, and paint etc.  I am at it again! Well actually, I should say still at it, cause I have not really stopped.
Sue has jokingly commented several times that if something stands still long enough around me, it is likely to get painted, and she is right on the money! 
What have I painted since we last talked?  Umm let me think...
I decided to go with red for the cedar chest, and I love it! 




Not a great picture, but you can see the change a bit of paint made to it. I also took the hardware off and sprayed it rubbed bronze. 

You know what! I am falling asleep at the keyboard and these pictures look terrible and I am scrambling for my words, so I am going to bed and maybe some really clever thoughts and ideas will come to me sometime between brushing my teeth and collapsing in my bed. If so I will tell you all about it tomorrow, if not I will continue on with this evenings train of thought and hopefully some better photos.  Zzzzzzzz