Monday, October 27, 2014

It's stick season

My fall doorhanging is just about the only place you'll see leaves these days.  After nearly a week of rain,  most have fallen from the trees.  People call this "stick season," but it's still pretty.  Every once in a while, driving around, you pass a house where the leaves are waiting to be raked up.  They look so pretty! 

The forest is more open with its blanket of leaves.  We hope to get out tomorrow for the last walk of the season (before hunting begins).  The last few walks have been cancelled due to rain.  Yesterday the sun came out after lunch, so we went for a walk on the bike path.  Got about half a mile before getting caught in a downpour.  We turned and hustled back to the car.

I've been making stews, lasagna, and other rib-sticking meals, and we really need to put the grill under wraps for winter.  I've also been spending more time knitting and am finished with one sleeve and working on the other one for a cardigan I've been working on since August, 2012!  My quilting has been taking a back seat, although I do hope to get the "ocean quilt" sandwiched this week.  The Loyal Union Sampler and Downton Abbey/Jane Austen quilts have come back from the longarmer, too, so they need binding.  Got to get my "mojo" working!

Friday, October 17, 2014

A commission quilt

I try never to do quilts by commission because, after making a dull t shirt quilt for someone years ago, I really want to spend my time working on something I like.  But I have one friend to whom I just can't say no.  She sent me a piece of fabric with French postcards and asked if I could use it to make a quilt for a little girl's room.  The postcard fabric is beige with black, so I thought more pink would help perk it up for a child.

Attic windows seems like a solution for these rectangular pieces, and I'll add all of these fabrics in some way or other.  It's really fun how cute some Parisian fabrics can be.  That HST block on the right is the result of making the mitered corners.  I think I'll do the attic windows blocks a little differently but will still end up with some HSTs to use somehow.

Monday, October 13, 2014


The past has been much on my mind recently.  Paul and I have taken a few groups on historic tours of Barre lately, and today we went on a industrial history walk with our neighbor in Montpelier.  He had photos from the 1850's and later, so that as we walked and looked, we could imagine what an area looked like before.  Some of my recent walks in the forest have included people not from the area, so I've talked a bit more about the granite industry and how the landscape evolved, from industrial wasteland to beautiful forest with views made out of rock piles that now have plants and trees growing on them.  

And then there's family history.  My Dutch sister has posted some family photos on Facebook that I've copied and saved.  Here's one of our father and his siblings, c. 1923 - he's the cutie on the left.  I was thinking I should make up a family tree for my son, but now I'm also gathering some photos to put into a book.  I've had good luck with Shutterfly in the past.  Every once in a while, I make a photobook out of my quilt pictures which is a nice way to remember those I've given away.  The other day, I started putting it together, but now I need to go back and write captions identifying the people.  All of these people have gone, and the two boys in sailor suits fought in and passed away during World War II, so I never knew them.

This winter I hope to print out some family trees for my son to go with the photobook.  I know he won't care much now, but he will when he's my age, or perhaps when he has kids.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Busy days...

...and an occasional night!  Last night's Parks & Recreation Commission meeting got me home after 9 pm.  I was too hopped up to sleep, so I got up and read until midnight.  This morning, I got up at 6 am, fully intending to walk in the town forest, but it started pouring.  That was fine with me, as I am feeling a little lazy today.   I have been busy doing everything but quilt lately.   The foliage couldn't be more beautiful, and there are lots of fall events calling to us.  Chicken pie suppers - walks in the woods - plays and concerts!   I did make 5 potholders and finished a table runner for the craft sale in November.  I think that will do it for me - I have a lot of things all ready to sell, and I'd like to concentrate on finishing a few things now.  That includes:
  • the Austen Family Album block of the month by Barbara Brackman - I plan to have 9 blocks for this one which is a sew-along for reading/discussing The Jane Austen Quilt Club,  by Ann Hazelwood (a terribly written book which claims to be a "mystery" but is as lame a mystery as I've read in a long time).  Here's this week's block, King George's Crown, since he was king during Jane's life:
  • A very traditional log cabin quilt set in a star pattern for Paul's great niece Tori, who's graduating from high school this coming spring.  I want to send it to the long armer, so I need plenty of lead time.
  • An off-white cardigan sweater I've been knitting for two years.  This may yet be the year I wear it!
  • A batch of nine patches in fall colors.  I have some lovely batik to put between the blocks - to snowball or not to snowball, that is the question?
  • A guild challenge piece.  I'm hoping to make a mini this time, and we are to make the whole thing out of half-square triangles.  My personal challenge for this will be to use only orange fabrics since that is my least favorite color.
  • A guild mystery quilt starting soon - I have lots of Civil War fabrics set aside, but will they be OK for this?
  • And ready to quilt are a granny square throw, my "ocean" quilt (turquoise scrappy with appliqued borders), and a little house wall hanging.  I have the batting, and am waiting for one piece of fabric from Connecting Threads for one of the backs.
  • Finally, the longarmer let me know that the two quilts I took to her at the beginning of the summer are ready to pick up and then, of course, bind.  Phew!