Thursday 31 October 2019

Cakes and Costumes

 I love dressing up in costumes. Most of the schools I taught in allowed the teachers to dress up for Halloween and I loved it.  I always wore a costume to hand out candy on Halloween night and did the thing so many of you did, sewed Halloween costumes for the family. Maybe why is because I have such happy memories of loving Halloween so much as a kid.

 Littler grandson had his birthday party with his friends and I got to dress up for it.  It was fun to wear a long black and silver wig and help corral 10 little costumed boys through the games and food, etc. They had a ball and I was very surprised at two things- how mannerly they all were. There were lots of pleases and thank yous which the moms and dads were happy to hear about. And how much fruit they ate. After bobbing for apples, most of them ate at least one and we had put together fruit spears with grapes, strawberries and cantaloupe which all got gobbled up.
Daughter made his cake as usual. That was a hit too. If  her day job doesn't work out for her, she can always fall back on cake making. :)
Image may contain: food
November will be busy in the sewing room and I'm looking forward to filling those steadily darkening days.

I love this basket and the project I'm corralling there these days. One of my stitchy goals is to make 10 more of these Dresden blocks.
Another goal is to have all the blocks completed for the Autumn project. Here are two more I'm making presently.  Anybody know the names of these?
I love how my mums are still so vibrant.  I moved them close to the house and inside one night to avoid a frost warning. I'm looking up whether or not I can overwinter them inside. Anyone know?
Who knew our small garage was part of a mice highway!
I brought in the humane mouse trap to give a good cleaning in the basement laundry tub. I have caught two more mice in it. I find them cute with their big ears and they are like the mice at the old farm, some soft grey and others brown with white underneath. Pretty colours. But I didn't know it was going to be a part time job looking after this!

I had a Blogger/computer glitch with Tuesday's post. The final version is out there somewhere in the internet universe but I can't reach it even after an hour trying and bringing in the big gun, hubby, to help out. On the upside it gave this old brain a workout!
                              Image result for Happy Halloween Words

Happy to link with Not Afraid of ColorThe Needle and Thread NetworkFor the Love of Geese,, Creative Compulsions and It's a Small Town Live.

Saturday 26 October 2019

Flag and Maple Leaf Blocks, Crochet Granny Squares

This award winning project/book called  The Lost Words came about when it was revealed that 40 words of nature had been dropped from a widely used children's dictionary.

 I read about it first in this post at What About Rheema? and have since researched it a little more.

  I couldn't believe words like acorn or wren would be dropped from a dictionary. In fact at first, I was appalled.  But after thought, I realized it is a reminder that the world keeps on changing and language in everyday use is never stagnant.
When I see beautiful tea cups, china, embroidered items and crocheted blankets at the thrift store, I'm reminded of how our love of things keeps evolving. What is revered by one generation, gets sidelined by another. They have things of their own choosing to use, enjoy and love, I guess.
And that goes for the words they use as well.

Time to revisit the plans I'd made for the October OMG and posted at Elm Street Quilts as goals for the month.  It's been a productive month, what with a family Thanksgiving, a Halloween Birthday party, time spent with friends and grandsons, medical appointments seen to, firewood chopped and stacked, some winter shopping done, fitness goals worked on and of course, lots of stitching time too. Make no wonder our days just whiz by!
 And in the sewing room...
 I easily made the goal of 10 more of the flag blocks. Dipped into green scraps for these. This simple block can't be beat for how it eats up little bits of fabric.
Have not finished my granny square scarf though have been valiantly working on it.  Here is my little pile of yarny goodness now today and I guess I need to decide how wide and long the scarf needs to be to know when to stop.
And as you know, the autumn stitching is well underway.  In fact that is going to be my slow stitching this weekend.
I have four maple leaf blocks made plus that brown background one that was a test block and now will applique the stems. Thank you for the ideas of how to do this and in particular, to those suggesting insetting it properly when stitching the block.  That would have saved stitching time that's for sure. I wondered why I hadn't thought of it and then discovered why. Duh!
 Here is the pattern I was following...

from this book by Ruby McKim and the instructions are scant but do state to applique the stem onto the finished block.
I'd also already cut the blocks so I figure I will proceed with the hand stitching. They won't take long.

Sunny and pretty outside but look at all the leaves down.
  Our trio of white tailed deer (the third is off to the side) are enjoying taking turns getting a snack of sunflower seeds at the bird feeders in this photo taken from my kitchen window.
They are not pushy with each other at all. Certainly appear to be gentle creatures.
Hope your weekend is wonderful!
In addition to linking with Patty, also joining Viewing Nature With EileenSo ScrappySmall Quilts and Doll QuiltsPretty PineyEm's Scrapbag and Kathy's Quilts.

Thursday 24 October 2019

Soap Aprons,Free Owl Pattern, Maple Leaves Blocks

As I was boiling Hubby's eggs this morning, I thought of all the things I could write about for today's post. I always have a lot of ideas in my head; in fact, deciding which to use in which post is more of the issue.
For instance, I've been meaning to mention to those of you who have hydrangea bushes, the flowers keep well indoors for a bouquet. Allow them to dry out.  I have a very large bunch that is two years old now and looks exactly the same as when picked.
 Up close the little flowers are so pretty.
I love my light box. I inherited this from first wife who used it to make stained glass ornaments. It has been so useful in so many ways... it's been hauled out for just about every project.  Big and awkward but does the job.
In this post at Not Afraid of Color, LeeAnna shared her colourful owls and that got me thinking about owls, which many of you know I love.  I found these two free patterns at Elsa Mora's site and thought do I need them for the autumn project. You'll have to hop over to Elsa's to take a look. Would they suit? The owl sure would.  I could embroider it or work out a way to applique the parts.  Or maybe best left for another project.  What do you think?  There is no shortage of inspiration for an autumn/Halloween project!

                                                    New to Me
Have any of you heard of this? I hadn't....soap aprons.  They are adorable little aprons to put on your dish detergent bottles when they sit beside the sink.  I guess. When mentioned on one of my facebook groups, many folks chimed in with stories of mothers or aunts who always made and used them. And apparently you could buy them too. Someone wants to make them and was wondering was it too much of a grandma thing to do. (This fabric is very cute.)
                                      Image result for dish soap apron
Recently during one of our outings we had this...because sometimes a good burger with sweet potato fries is just what you want. I don't make burgers at home so especially enjoy them when made by someone else. And I eat them with a fork and knife. Anyone else do that very weird thing?   
I'm working on maple leaves in the sewing room this week.  Here is the first one... still have to figure out how to get a stem on it.
And with pumpkin and mask embroidered and this little happy cat, I think there is just one more, the haunted house, to finish.
Anyone remember the woodpecker that was pecking on the side of the house and actually made holes? ( A hazard of living in a log wood house, I guess.) He was back last week but fortunately after just a few hammers at the wall, moved to the railing and eventually gave up and left. He had me a bit worried though.
Only one more Thursday in October and that is Halloween!
Happy to link with Not Afraid of Color, Paying Ready AttentionQuilt FabricationIt's A Small Town LifeNeedle and Thread Network, The Inquiring QuilterSugarlane DesignsFloral Friday Foto and My Quilt Infatuation.

Tuesday 22 October 2019

Shopping, Lollipop Blocks, Mice Tale

My horoscope for today said nothing about releasing something captive.
 But that is exactly what I was doing at 7:30 ish this morning.  Two more little mice in the humane mouse trap. One so afraid I could not get it to leave the safety of the trap. I left him and trap with the top open down by the pond so he could venture out himself; finished my jog and there he was still hiding in a corner with just his tail showing. I had to tug on said tail to finally get him to move. Then he sat in the grass a time before slowly creeping away. They'd spent the night munching all the peanut butter off the bikkies so I knew at least he was leaving with some sustenance in his belly.
Humane Mouse Trap Total: 6 to date saved from the engines of the cars.

I saw this Sherpa fleece head band from Simon's  that I think I need. It won't be long before fleece will be my go to wardrobe.
In fact I bought this very fleecy top last week.  It's Columbia, black with a little dotted pattern. Thinner fleece but still soft and cozy.
And I'm especially happy with my new jeans from happy I bought two pairs.  Jeans are a challenge for me due to my wide hips :)  below a small waist. These are the Hanna high rise waist with curve tech technology in a very dark blue...and a little spandex is the secret ingredient.  I guess technology had to advance enough to develop a pair of jeans that would fit me comfortably.
I made bone broth from the turkey carcass and then used it for soup. Daughter just told me you can buy bone broth in powder form at the Bulk Barn. So this week I'll have to check that out.  They offer a 10% discount for seniors and students every Wednesday.  I also found the one below online and it gets great reviews. It might be something better for me to sip on rather than having that second cup of afternoon tea.

                                       Prairie Naturals Grass Fed Bone Broth Protein Beef 300 g
I didn't bother taking an after photo of the closet in my sewing room. It did not look that different but it is. I spent a whole afternoon on it...dragged everything out, sorted, grouped or regrouped items and put it all back. I had a bag of garbage, several items that I'd been looking for and a satisfying feeling as my reward.  It's good to be reminded of where exactly tucked away things are!

I've finished three of these little lollipop flower appliqued blocks.  And used scraps for a little border to add some more interest.
I can't bear to waste any of this wonderful (and expensive) fabric.

I hope to finish the fourth one today and then I'm tackling a maple leaf block.  Wish me luck!
And with that particular goal, I'll close this post.
And I'm really hoping no more mice go into my trap. 😟
Linking this post with Home Sewn By Us.

Sunday 20 October 2019

Happy Scrappy Project and Halloween Stitching

Our beautiful golden maple tree viewed through the back stairway window.  The orange has faded to yellow.  Even on a dull day, it looks like it is lit up.

 Here it is from the front veranda.  It is very old but still puts on quite a display.
I feel awed each time I glimpse it on my way to the sewing room.
 I've been giving my hand stitching a little attention this weekend. So far I've stitched two of the six designs from Buttermilk Basin.  I'm using basic back stitch and running stitch for the yellow and orange.
As I mentioned the designs are very simple. I haven't done embroidery like this in a long time.
Here is the one in hand for today.
I'll be trying to work out how to incorporate these in my autumn quilt project.
I've also spent time organizing and sewing more of the Dresdens.  I've got 45 blocks made and need more. This is the most happy, scrappy project ever.
Below the view from my sewing room window just before our first overnight frost. That's a little stained glass of the pitcher plant, the provincial flower of my home province, Newfoundland and Labrador. I love having little things around that are momentos of home. More especially now that such things do not give a tug on my heart.  Trees all around us here in our wooden house.

Mr. Toad showed up one day in the back yard looking like he wanted in the house. I found the line and bumps on his back interesting. (I know I'm weird like that.) They show he is an American Toad and looked very well fed.
It's a sunny Sunday here so long walks today.  Take Care all.
Happy to link with Kathy's QuiltsViewing Nature With Eileen, Quilting is More Fun Than HouseworkSmall Quilts and Doll QuiltsLove Laugh QuiltSum of Their Stories and The Jesh Studio.

Thursday 17 October 2019

Halloween and Nature Patterns, Glorious Colours

Too many things to count is the way I think about my weekly likes for this Thursday post. I've picked out these to share today.
I love how a close up of this Eastern Yellowjacket revealed an interesting pattern. Nature never disappoints.
And I loved holding this little guy in my hand; one of the small Painted turtles in the pond. He's got interesting patterning in orange and yellow too.
From looking down to looking up.
It is all about the leaves these days.
We are enjoying the spectacular colours around the property. Contrasting blue skies highlight the yellows and oranges.
The sumacs are red this time of year adding to the glory of the fields and forests.
One of the best things about blogging is the feeling of being surrounded by a group of knowledgeable, talented and creative people. Inspiring me every single day. I love it!
Which leads me to this...
Thank you all who wrote about my Killdeer which the photo I showed in this recent post was not.  It is a Solitary Sandpiper recognizable by its greenish legs, spotted back and white circled eye.  I now need to review my bird photos because there have been a number of these wading birds at the pond and except for the heron, I've thought them all Killdeer.  Who knows what I may find!
And for the record here is the Killdeer at the pond in 2017. From a great distance and closely cropped.
I love how the petunias have survived three bouts of (mild) overnight frost and are a little worse for wear but still bravely blooming.
Stitching in front of the t.v. is one of my favourite pastimes. These simple black back stitched designs will be done in no time. You can read more about them in this post.
Sorry I've forgotten who recommended this show, Succession, a while back when I'd asked for suggestions. We are enjoying it very much so thanks!
                                 See the source image
I enjoyed looking through this list.  10 Halloween Quilts for the Beginner with links to free patterns and tutorials found at Simple Simon and Company.  This banner one caught my eye.
And yes to this too.
We have to keep a lint roller in the car for our clothes because this guy sheds 365 days of the year. Here he's on alert in his usual spot keeping an eye on those squirrels.
While Miss Murphy relaxes knowing the guard dog is on guard.
Hope your week is winding down on a good note. We have rain today but back to sun tomorrow.
Take care all.
Linking with Not Afraid of ColorNeedle and Thread NetworkPaying Ready AttentionBrian's Home BlogBijou Bead BoutiqueFloral Friday FotoThe LLB Gang and It's A Small Town Life.

Tuesday 15 October 2019

Cheesecake, Turkey Talk, To Do List

First on my TO DO list is show you that Thanksgiving turkey, the one that was cooked from a frozen state and pre-stuffed.  I put it in the oven at 9 and worked out it would be cooked by 4.  And it was.
Everyone thought it was very good; the dressing was typical of those packaged types but tasty. So perhaps I'll do this again sometime deliberately. Except for the longer oven time, it certainly simplifies the cooking of a turkey.
I made one of those cheesecake type of desserts. We had bought a tray of fresh figs and a container of pears at Costco, both favourites of ours.
I made an oatmeal base and one of those unbaked cheesecake mixtures with whipped cream and cream cheese for the middle layer. Then piled on the fruit which I had mixed with  a little was tasty too though I was a little worried about the improvising and not following a recipe as such.  Here is what was left over...not as pretty but Hubby will enjoy it. :)
I had a great day, by the way. I love preparing a meal like this and getting the house ready.  We stayed long at the table and did a lot of laughing which is a sign of a great gathering. And I got more pretty flowers.
But Back to my TO DO List for this Tuesday's post.
Sort photos which is an ongoing project. With my old ancient Acer lap top still in use and now my new one as well, I have photos everywhere it seems.  I've given this task two night's worth of time but it needs much more.

I need to sort this closet in my sewing room.  Goodness knows what I will find. Hopefully this is the Before photo. It started out kind of tidy but I've been just sticking stuff in there since I moved into this room a year ago.
I have to get out my good sewing machine the one with all the different feet. I have a few  many projects that need quilting. Time to get at them even if I just use the walking foot for quilting.

Meanwhile I finished the four full circle Dresden blocks which was last week's goal.
Work out the next blocks for this autumn stitching...I've made a start and want these done this week.  I'm really enjoying these fabrics.
Try to maintain my physical fitness...
 I've always jogged...a little and with great care.  Since swimming is over, I've taken a little more interest in my so called jogging. I'd love to keep the legs as strong as the swimming made them. It's alarming to me how quickly I lose those gains.  So I've been doing a little jog every morning since I'm up anyway.  Not beating myself up if I don't do it but want badly to keep this up as long as the weather allows. It gives me more energy during the day and also removes some of the guilt about eating. :)  So a goal this week is to keep moving as fast as I can.
Hope your week is going well.  After a little rain yesterday we are enjoying lovely sunshine again today so October has been a wonderful weather month so far.
Linking with Home Sewn By UsSo Scrappy and Em's Scrapbag.