Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Best Laid Plans (Spokane, WA)

..........often go awry.  Yep, that's the way the last couple of weeks have been for me.  First, it was the sudden attention our cats wanted during our travels along with bad weather.  So, not a whole lot of sewing going on during that time.
With two weeks in Spokane, I planned to catch up on my sewing projects, take photos, and get some items listed.  I did not plan on turning into a......a shuffling, snuffling, wheezing, sneezing Zombie moaning for more Tissues!  Those lovely trees outside our motorhome were dumping super-strength mutated pollen.  Usually, I can take a Claritin and be fine the next day.  Not this time.  I spent over a week fighting allergies so I did not get a whole lot done the first week.

On The Cutting Board
I'm happy to say that I am back among the living and getting a few things done.  I have twelve Happy Camper tops embroidered and ready to sew together.
I have two new ones with a black bear profile that I'm in very excited about listing.
Here are three smaller Happy Campers in different colors.
And of course, four of the all-time favorite color combo of red with aqua or teal Happy Campers.  I have more to work on and hopefully, they will all be finished before June which is not too far off.
Oh, and here's a photo of a T@B trailer.  It was parked next to us for one of the nights while we were in Montana.  Isn't it adorable?  You can see where my inspiration comes from for my Happy Campers.
T@B Trailer
As soon as I started to feel better, I started working on some projects for myself.  I have been wanting to finish my SW pillows since last winter.  Ta-Da!  All four are now done!  If you like the Native Flair pattern, you can order the epattern from QuiltWoman.  I'm tempted to make a lap quilt to match the pillows.  After, I finish a few other UFOs.
Speaking of UFOs, my armchair sewing caddy has been on the To Do list for a long time.  I finally had to make a new one because the other one was falling apart.  The fabric had faded from exposure to the sun, over stuffing it to the point that the seams were popping, and the straps were frayed from moving the caddy from one chair to the another chair.

This time, I made the new one a little wider with deeper pockets.  Now Dusty will not be able to chew on my pens and pencils sitting in the top pocket.  To make the pockets stronger, I used one long tube of folded fabric and sewed down sections instead of separate squares of fabric.  I'm quite happy with the way this one came out considering I only spent a couple of days working on it.  I just wish I had used a heavier interfacing for the back.  I'll have to remember that for the next time.
Tomorrow is a travel day.   We plan to stay a few weeks in mid-Washington at Crescent Bar before we start our move towards the west coast.  
In the meantime, I think I am going to enjoy something I have not been able to do since we left the NW area.  I'm going to have a cup of hot Wild Huckleberry Tea while I read through Mary Janes Farm before I do a little more sewing this evening.
Happy Quilting!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Traveling Cross Country(Spokane, WA)

We made it to our destination - Spokane, WA.  I did not realize how much I missed seeing snow covered mountains until we crossed over into New Mexico's northeast corner near Raton.  Seeing the mountains on the horizon made me feel like I have come home.
Rest area - Trinidad, CO
We are not the only ones happy to be settled in one spot for a couple of weeks.  Four days into our cross-country travel, the cats started caterwauling their protest.  Max started the protest.  Soon Hitch would jump onto the back of my chair to howl in my ear while Dusty walked around my feet mewing his protest.
Time for a nap - Squirrel
Only Squirrel seemed content to sit and sleep in my lap.   He was in and out of my lap throughout the whole trip.  None of our cats use to ride near the front while we were traveling.  Usually our sofa is filled with loose items, but now I set it up for the cats.  Don't they look happy?  Well, for the moment anyway.  ;)
Nap time
With all the protesting, we stayed an extra night at Lathrop State Park with hope that this would settle the cats down.  They went out for walks, soaked up the sun, and ate grass.  According to Max, it was not long enough.  So, the protests continued on down the road.
Beautiful view from our site in Lathrop SP
We stayed one night at Terry Bison Ranch in Wyoming.  We ate dinner in their restaurant.  We were worried about finding something to eat when we read that they would substitute any flavored hamburger sandwich with a veggie burger.  I wish more restaurants offered this kind of substitute.  It would give us more of a variety than just the vegan plate.

After a delicious dinner, we walked around the ranch.  This ranch is setup to entertain the whole family with train rides, horseback riding, small carnival rides, and a variety of animals.  Here's a few photos of the ranch's animals that I manage to get during our short walk before sunset.
I say it looks like we have some visitors.  Let me get a closer look...
Do you like my new hair style?
Hey Neighbor!
The colt was my favorite.  He was full of energy when we were watching him.  He was moving so fast that I could not get a clear photo of him.  I think he wore out his Mom with his bucking and kicking in circles around her.  Maybe he made her dizzy.  I know I would have been if my kids did that around me.
New colt giving Mama a kiss
After we left the ranch, the weather started turning colder with precipitation.  Rain turned to slush.  Slush turned to snow and visibility became dangerously low for the highway.  We decided to stop at a pull-off for lunch.  According to AccuWeather, the cold front would blow through within a couple of hours.  We had our fingers crossed since we really did not want to spend the night in the middle of nowhere.  The snow did stop and we were able to get back on the road...for a short time....
We go outside now?
We did not get far when we reached the Sheriff's department and State Troopers blocking both lanes while clearing a rolled over truck from the highway.  By the time we drove by, we could not tell if more than one car had been in the accident.  We can only hope the travelers made it through the accident with minimum injuries.  

We were south of Kaycee when the snow started again with a vengeance this time. We had planned to spend to night in Sheridan visiting with friends, but between the snow, side winds, and the accident, it was time to call it a day.  The snow did not stick, but we found out later that the highway south of Buffalo was closed due to bad weather.  We made the right choice to stop early
Biiiig snowflakes!  Kaycee, WY
I wish I could say our trip was uneventful with a relaxing time despite the weather issues.  The motorhome had quite a few problems.  Two major ones were the exhaust brakes were not working and a hose burst to our air bags.  Dan was able to fix the exhaust brake problem.  The air bag leak was more major and we were very lucky it stopped working while we were parked at a truck stop.  Dan called it our lucky breakdown because if it had happened on the mountain pass in the construction zone, we would have been blocking the pass for hours.  When the air bags are deflated, the motorhome does not move.  I'm not sure if we would have stopped suddenly or if the motorhome would have coasted to a stop.  Not something I would want to experience that is for sure.  Both were a very scary thought  of what could have happened while we were on the mountain passes.  Dan was able to get a mobile RV/Truck service to repair and replace the burst hose within a couple of hours. 

I'm happy to say we made the rest of the trip without any major mechanical problems or cat protesters.

On The Cutting Board
New design - Dreamcatcher
Due to Squirrel's sudden change of heart to spend more time in my lap, I wasn't able to do as much sewing.  I tried to make up the time in the evenings, but that wasn't easy to do either with cats wanting out, trying to prep things for evening, dinner, and just too tired to even look at a project.
Road Runner
Anyway, I did finish the custom order for our Pensacola friends.  I'm very happy with the Road Runner.  He came out very well.  I had to be careful with making the morning glories.  I love making them so much that they would have been climbing all over the trailer.  Just like they do in real life!
Southwest Vintage Trailer
Making this design was a lot of fun.  You can bet I'll be making more!  In the meantime, I need to get back to all the others that were suppose to be done by the time we reached Spokane.  I hope to have some photos of progress to post soon.
Happy Quilting!

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