Saturday, November 30, 2013

More Finished Projects (Sutherlin, OR)

We had a nice time with our new friends during our Thanksgiving dinner.  No problem finding foods to eat...more of a problem digesting too much food later.  It is so wonderful how we can sit down to eat a meal with strangers and leave by the end of the meal as friends.
I hope everyone had a great day celebrating Thanksgiving and your travels were safe.  No worries for this turkey except to not fall off the fence.  Looks like he ate too much too!
So, how many of you braved the stores on Black Friday?  Not me!  I don't need or want anything to risk a day in a crowded store.  I did do some online shopping.  My lifeline to books and other worlds - my Kindle is trying to die on me.  Oh no!  Amazon is having a sale on some of the their Kindles including the one I want to get to replace my old I bought it.  Whew, disaster averted this time!...not really...just kidding...

On The Cutting Board (no more)
I just listed eight items (6 mug rugs and 2 wall hangings) in QuiltCats Shop.  Here are a few of the items that I am happy to say are finished and ready for a new home.
Happy Camper mug rug
Alice in Wonderland
design by Nancy Halvorsen
Shasta camper
I think I will work on some non-Etsy projects for awhile.  I have some quilt tops to finish.  Scraps to cut up.  A granddaughter's quilt to finish before we leave here and some practicing on my new quilt frame.
Happy Quilting!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Turkey? No Thank You! (Sutherlin, OR)

Happy Thanksgiving!  Gosh, it is that time again.  Time to gather around the turkey with friends and family.  This year will be different for Dan and I.  I won't be cooking a turkey or eating it.  In May, we changed our diets to all vegetarian.  We changed our diets for health reasons and I can say we have a lot to be thankful for this year.  I feel better than I did at the age of 40.  Less creaks in the joints, less headaches, more energy, and I lost 15 lbs (Dan lost double the weight).  I really did not think I could change my diet.  The big surprise for me - I don't miss my old ways of eating.
It's still cold here, but not as bad as places
This doesn't mean we will be missing all the festivities.  We plan to join our new RV park friends for a thanksgiving dinner.  I plan to make a big dish of brown rice stuffing with carrots, celery, mushrooms, and almonds.  I'm sure we will have no problem finding other dishes to eat.  This will be the first time since our son was four that I did not spend two days preparing our thanksgiving dinner and I have to admit - I am enjoying the freedom!
Hitch:  yea, sure, I remember you
Speaking of our son, Shaun left yesterday.  We had a great time visiting with him.  The cats seemed happy to see him too. Although, they did not come right out and say so.  Always playing the cool cat attitude.

Shaun is officially "moved' to his new home in Everett, WA.  I'm positive that he will be happy living in Washington State.  He loves to hike and camp.  Not to mention, there will be plenty of new places for him to explore from Canada to Northern California.  I wish him all the best on his new adventure.

On The Cutting Board
After Shaun left yesterday, I received a package from one of our friends and a quilter.  It is a John Flynn quilting frame.  I have never used one, but I'm willing to give it a try.  I have slowed down on my free-form quilting because it is hard on my back and shoulders.  I'm hoping this frame will make the quilting a lot easier.  Storage will not be a problem since the frame breaks down.  The three arms fit in my closet and the rest goes into an overhead compartment.    It is so sweet of her to give this to me when she decided to upgrade to a longarm machine.  As soon as I get some PVC, I plan to start practicing with my new frame.  Christmas came early this year!
I'm running a little late with this post because I really wanted to go shopping in Eugene today.  We spent most of the day going from one store to another.  I needed to do some shopping at Trader Joe's and since I was there and loaded with coupons....I might as well do some shopping at Joann Fabric Store too.  

I wanted to get some fabric for this embroidery project from "All Creatures Great & Small" by Natalie Bird that I have been working on for over a year...or is it closer to two?  Anyway, I am almost done with the embroidery blocks and I was a little worried about finding fabric that would match the threads.  The more I thought about it, the more I worried.
Eh, I worried for no reason.  I took some of the blocks for comparing colors and this is what I found.  They are quite a bit brighter and yet, they seem to go well with the embroidered blocks.  I plan to split up the embroidered blocks into two smaller quilts instead of making one large one.  Hopefully, I bought enough fabric for both quilts.
 With a new quilt frame to try and a beautiful pile of fabrics to use....I am very motivated!
Happy Quilting!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Jack Frost Came to Stay (Sutherlin, OR)

Jack Frost came to visit last night.  Before he left, he did some fantastic artwork around our home.  I had to go out early this morning to get photos before it all melted away.
I love the way he decked out the berries with frosty crystals.

 And the designs on the leaves!
Extra frosting on these...

 Even the spider's home got special attention....
Hey look, a free-form spider web!  Thinking outside the box!
It got so cold last night before bed that I gave up sewing for the evening to watch TV and read my book.  I had to alternate my hands to keep the warm.  Max was using my lap to stay warm and I was using him as a hand warmer.  I think Max takes after me when it comes to a low tolerance to cold temperatures.  I'm so bad that I am not happy unless it is above 75 degrees....then it is summer time.  Poor Max was so cold that he was shaking for a while when he first curled up in my lap.  Between the two of us, we had a nice evening reading and catnapping.
my warmz - you have had enough computer time
On The Cutting Board
I'm still chipping away at that 13 gallon scrap bag.  I want to get as much done before our son shows up for a visit.  Oh!  Our son is moving from Albuquerque to the Seattle area.  That is another point in favor of Sutherlin.  We will be closer to him.  Now, if our daughter can find a job in this area after she graduates, it'll be the perfect place for us!

So, no photos of my latest projects.  I promise to post some for the next blog.  In the meantime, I thought my quilting friends would enjoy reading this list.  I have done over 3/4 of the list and I'm pretty sure the ones I have not done...will never get checked off.
Happy Quilting!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Fall Colors (Sutherlin, OR)

We are still viewing fall colors here.  Living in the southwest for such a long time where the weather goes from long summers to 2 days of fall and boom! it's winter...well, this has been a nice change to have all these fall colors to enjoy for the last couple of weeks.  These lovely colors will not last much longer with the temps slowly dropping for the past week.  Today was the coldest so far.  
I love the colors in this one tree
So cold, I did not want to walk.  A perfect day to curl up with a book or project with Max the lap cat keeping me warm.  But, I did not sit.  Instead, we got some grocery shopping done and ate lunch out. A nice day for an outing instead of sitting.  Or maybe napping instead of sitting or shopping because that was a heavy lunch.  Yep, feeling a little sluggish right now.  Okay, back to the photos....
Almost every time we walk by this tree with a bear under it, there is a deer laying nearby.  Of course, the one day I carry my camera around with me, the deer is not there!
We had a great visit with our friends and with his parents.  The parents are full-timers too, so we had a lot in common to talk about.  Our day of visiting went too fast.  I wish we could have spent more time with all four of them.  That just means we will have to hook-up with them again somewhere down the road.

On The Cutting Board
I made the mistake of pulling out my bag of scraps.  I really need to cut down (literally) from a 13 gallon bag of scraps to a 2 gallon bag of scraps.  For three days straight, I have been cutting up scraps into 2-inch squares.  I hate to say that it has not put a dent in the 13 gallon bag of scraps.  Arrrrgh!  Time to look at a pattern for larger pieces so this vanishing act will go faster.  I'll get back to the scraps later...

In the meantime, I finally finished five of the Happy Campers, 
but I want to finish the last mug rug along with....
this wall hanging  before I list them.  It is easier to set up my photo shooting for all of them at one time.  I need to list them all soon.  I can't believe Thanksgiving is next week!  Where did the time go?
 Wait, I know where it took the scrappy detour and got lost!
Happy Quilting!  

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Deer! Oh, Deer! (Sutherlin, OR)

I'm not getting a lot of sewing done.  We have been doing a lot of walking, visiting, and exploring.  I'm sure all the running around will slow down as we get more familiar with the area and the park's residents.  But, not today.  Today, I am waiting for some friends to show up that we have not seen since May 2012.  They are full-timers too, but they travel outside the US as well and they have been doing a lot of both!  So, today will be catching up with our traveling friends!

Here are some more photos of our local wildlife.  The two deer below did not realize that we were standing nearby so both stopped in the same spot making for a perfect photo op for me.
Oh deer!  Humans!
Humans!  Say did you see which way the doe went?
We see the turkeys every time we walk now.  They are so entertaining to watch.
The turkeys stopped by our site recently.  You should have seen our cats' faces.  Their eyes were huge.  I had to wonder what they were thinking..."did you see the meat on that bird's leg?"...."my dream came true! That is the biggest bird I have ever seen!"..

 I still think the jack rabbit looks like a cottontail on steroids.  This one looks like he is scolding me as well.
go away, you are bothering me
 The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley

This has to be the first book that I have read, finished, and wanted to start it all over again. Funny, I wasn't too sure about a time-travel love story since I don't like the questions that come with time the butterfly effect...all the what if's -- what if she changes something in the past that will cause a ripple in her time. Susanna manages to address some of those questions rather smoothly.  

I had nothing to worry about with the time traveling because it wasn't long before I couldn't put the book down.  When I did, I found myself wondering how this would end for the main character Eva Ward.  This is an old fashion romance set in modern day England in a Gothic paranormal story with a little mystery and lots of great characters.

The unexpected twist at the end really got me.  The clues were so subtle that I missed many of them until everything was told towards the end.  That's when I thought that I needed to read it again.  I can't believe Susanna had added all those clues and I did not pick up on them.  Almost to the end when someone says something that finally turns on the lightbulb for me...but wait a minute...that no that can't be!!  Needless to say, I was really surprised by the twist and the ending.  Excellent!  I like Susanna Kearsley's writing style and the way she tells a story so I certainly plan to read more of her books.  There's no swearing or sex.

I hope to have some finished projects for my next posting.  In the meantime, I better hop to some cleaning before our friends arrive!  Happy Quilting!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

What a Turkey! (Sutherlin, OR)

Here are some photos of the animals that we seen around the RV park during our walks.  We see this mother deer with her two little ones all the time.  They seem to be quite comfortable hanging around in the yards....on people's decks, walking down the street...blocking traffic...munching as they go.  They were sleeping behind our site a couple of nights ago.
Mama with one of her fawns
You can see the turkeys in the background in the photo below.  Quite often we will see the turkeys, some jack rabbits, and the deer all hanging out together.  I wonder if they start partying as soon as we go around the corner?
here's the second fawn
Even the wild turkeys are pretty tame.  They certainly are entertaining to watch.  We have been within ten feet of them while they are busy looking for food.  They do prefer we keep moving.  If we stop to watch them, they tend to move away.
I heard Thanksgiving was cancelled this year...too bad!
Hmm, there's got to be a joke in this one.  I did not know turkeys sat on fences.  I also did not know they could fly up to 30 feet into the air.  I always thought they flew low to the ground for a short distance.  Learn something new everyday!

I think this woodpecker is trying to blend into his background!  I was lucky to be near the apple tree when he flew into it.  He was doing a lot of squawking when he landed in the tree.  Maybe he was telling us to stay away from his apples. 
On The Cutting Board
Okay, five of the six mug rugs are ready for quilting and embellishments.  I slowed down on my projects because we have been exploring the area, meeting people, and taking advantage of the nice weather to go for walks.  So, about the only time I am getting any work done is in the evenings. 
Here's the last one.  I'm hoping to make this one look like a vintage Shasta camper.  They are known for having a silver wing on the back of the trailer.  I thought pink would look match the door and stripe, of course.   I'll attach the wing after I sew the camper together.
Tomorrow's Veteran's Day and many restaurants are offering free meals.  Check online to see what is available in your town.  You deserve it!
Happy Veterans Day. So far anyway.  Beware of Barry
Thank you for your service and have a great day!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

We Have Moved (Sutherlin, OR)

We left the coast behind.  It was time to move inland for the winter. On Monday, we packed up and moved to Sutherlin's Escapees park.    Since the Timber Valley SKP Park is in our top two choices for our  home base, we thought we should see what winters are like here. 

Below is a photo I took when we stopped for a few minutes to watch the Elk along the way.
Elk in Wildlife viewing area
Weather was never a big thing when we lived in a house with lots of space to move around in...or to leave fabric and projects sitting out.  Now I feel like the weather dictates what I am going to do for the day even when I am indoors.  Do I want to pull out that big project and take up half the motorhome for the day when the weather is bad or shall I wait for a warm sunny day?  Decisions!  

I can get a little chaotic while working on a project.  There are times when I am spread out from the living room couch to the bedroom.  Most times, I am good and keep myself contained to two areas - living and kitchen areas....just don't look for a place to seat...there isn't one...except for where Dan is sitting.
Out the front window
So far, the weather hasn't been too cold or too wet, but we have only been here for 3 days, and of course, we are still in the Fall season.  We got out for our walks and talked with some of the residents.  We are also seeing a lot of different critters.  Yes, I got photos and I will share them next time.  

The best part is our site that we got to pick out this time.  We picked one with a view of the hills overlooking the park.  The views are wonderful right now with the changing of colors and the low clouds covering the hills.   Very inspiring for creating new projects.  Well, I guess I should finish what I have already started first.
Side view from the dining and living areas
I am so happy to have a cement pad with gravel.  The site's owner did some nice landscaping that the cats are exploring.  The best part is not tracking in a bunch of pine needles and mud when we take the cats outside. I swear I was sweeping up enough for a small garden every time!  Have you ever tried to wipe a cat's paws?..belly?...rear?  Yea, it is not much fun.  Not to mention, they are smart enough to remember us doing it the first time so they bolt through the door and head straight for the bedroom.  We gave up on that idea.
On The Cutting Board
I'm finishing the embroidery on two more Happy Campers.  Then I need to pull out the sewing machine and get them done in time for Christmas.
I have been wanting to do a project with sea turtles so this is the first of many that I am thinking of doing.  I want to do a sea turtle wall hanging with Hawaiian applique design and maybe try a reverse applique with sea turtles too.
So many ideas...sooooo little time!
Happy Quilting!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Mush-tropolis (Florence, OR)

We have been taking our walks in the campground.  Our entertainment during our walks have been looking for different mushrooms.  They are popping up everywhere just like little communities.  I looked for little pixies and fairies with no luck.  They are shy little ones, but I got some nice photos of their homes.

Here's a fine example of a Mush-tropolis with plenty of high rises.
Below are some wonderful homes with a view.  Very fungus-shui, don't you think?
Transportation moves quickly along the Mush-Rail.  Making it easy for the mushrooms to setup homes farther down the limb.
The suburbs are perfect for growing families.  Lots of little ones hanging around this area with room to grow.
My favorites are the Toad Stool villages.  They are more spread out and less populated.  We have one little village right outside our site.  We like to see how they are doing every day.
I just love the red caps with the white dots!  I wonder if I can make a mug rug to look like a toad stool home.
Hmm, I'll have to think about that one.

On The Cutting Board
I put my wall hangings on hold until we can move.  We are back to limited power and it has been quite chilly around here as well.  With our power source limited, it is hard for me to use the iron when I feel like it without me having to turn off our electric heaters all the time.  To freeze or iron?  No need to think about it.  I like being warm.  The ironing will have to wait.

So, in the meantime, I have been embroidering some new Happy Campers.  I have a total of six that I am working on right now.

Here's a sneak peak of four Happy Campers.  I'm having lots of fun with the new designs and trying some different stitches, threads, and beads.
 I don't think I'm quite done with any of these yet.
Every time I look at them, I think of something else to add to them.
All right!  I'm ready to get back to my projects.
Happy Quilting!

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