Thursday, July 22, 2010

Headed to Portland, OR

Well, the time has come at last. Guy has moved out of his apartment in Ithaca and tomorrow we leave for Portland, OR, where he is relocating. I decided to tag along on the trip because I loved seeing the country last year when we drove to Seattle. It will be a bittersweet trip, to be sure.
Lucas will be caring for things at home while we're away. It has to be something he can do easily, so I moved all the outdoor potted plants to the back side of the house near the hose, so he can keep them watered. Hubby said this looks like a jungle.
Most of the flowers were planted from seedlings I grew in the house last spring, so I am hoping they will still be pretty when I return. (heck, I'll be happy if they're alive. No offense to Lucas, but the heat has really left them in sad shape) I'd like to think he'll water the flower beds, too. Hey, a Mom can dream, right? :-)

I also moved all the indoor plants to a central location so he can easily water them at least once while I'm gone. Last time I went away and he was in charge one of the tropical plants set up blossoms. Maybe he can work his magic again! This reminds me of the day my friends Jackie and Diane helped me move the plants to this house- they were astounded that one person could have this many houseplants!

It has been years since we have had a nice family picture made, and I imagine it will be a while before we get another chance now. So I set the timer - and even got Guy to not look miserable (he hates having pictures taken).

We're making it a sort of an adventure, rather than just driving straight out. I'll post pictures when I can. And when I get back, you can bet I'll be getting back to the sewing room! I never thought I'd see the day when my sewing machine had dust on it!!!

I am grateful for:
A whole week with the family together!
Cool nights- just made for snuggling.
Frozen cookie dough to put in my ice cream.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Birthday Party

On Sunday we had a pig roast for all our friends and family. The weather cooperated by giving us a slight break from the triple H weather we'd had earlier in the week. It was really hubby's birthday, but it was intended to celebrate the fact that I'm 50 at the end of the month. We'll be traveling and this date worked best for the rest of the family, so I sort of borrowed his day this year.

Sadly, I didn't think to take many pictures, but my good friend Kathi was kind enough to share hers! (THANKS again!!!)

This is hubby, cooking the pig.

Since we don't have a lot of trees, we got a tent!

I'm so glad Melanie "crashed" the party!

My "oldest" friends- since grade school for most of us.

I make quilts to use as samples for the classes that I teach, which means they pile up pretty fast around here. I decided to find homes for a few of them. One recipient was so happy with the gift that she returned the favor with a gift of her own, a wonderful "Maruca" bag, called "the Sparrow". I usually carry little bags I make, but this one was SO perfect, I couldn't wait to move right into it! (Thanks, Jo Ann!!)

I am grateful for:
The old editor is still available here.
My hubby doing as much as he did for the party.
My friend Jen came to the party (hadn't seen her in a long time)
Nice long naps
my flowers put on a pretty nice show for the party.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Painting with thread over painted fabric.

At the workshop I attended with Barbara Murak last month, she showed us all how to paint a floral bouquet, insisting it was something we could all do. I think she brings much joy to people she visits in hospitals by doing this, and she is very good at it. My painting was more a few blobs of color, implying a bouquet only I could see. So I decided to enhance it with thread, rather than trying to add more paint.
I posted pictures from the class, but here is the before picture.

First, I added some definition and shading with colored pencils. I used iron on interfacing and one layer of tear away stabilizer - a papery kind I will not use again!

I used Sulky Rayon thread in the top, and the Coats and Clark fine polyester in the bobbin. I would recommend this thread to anyone who likes "the Bottom Line", as I feel it performed in a similar way.

It is machine quilted with invisible thread. The edges are finished with a facing. I tried doing a mitered facing this time, a technique I need to practice, as it is not as neat as I would like on the back.

I added a few beads here and there to imply the flower center and the pattern of dots on the petals. I took it outside to take the final picture, thinking I would get nice clear colors, but the sun was already turning everything yellow, I guess. ( It has been unbearably hot here this week).

I am grateful for:
Having unscheduled time which allowed me to play in the sewing room.
The air conditioner hubby finally talked me into for the bedroom.
The rare pleasure of having my son home for dinner.
Chai spiced tea- so refreshing! (thanks, Liz!)
The chipmunks have stopped digging up my garden- for now.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The big show is up!!

Disclaimer: As always I apologize for spacing issues. I can never get things to where I want then because it changes when it publishes. Anyone know how to avoid that????

Yesterday the members of the "Art C Girlz" hung our exhibit at the GOArt! Gallery! Even we were amazed at how great it looks! Each month we come in with a piece or two to share, drawing raves from the other members. But seeing them all in the same place, displayed so well, is an awesome sight! It has inspired even me to want to go home and make some new art pieces! This picture was taken as we finished up. The blue flower is a group project, made collectively by the members of the group. The small picture underneath is the photo we chopped up for the pattern.
Here are a few of my favorites.
Elaine's painted silk tree with amazing beading.

Sharon's marbled piece. We were each given a piece of hand marbled fabric and challenged to make something. Sharon saw volcanic activity!

Kathi's wondrous landscape!

It's very hard to get a picture that does justice to Karen's cutwork piece. The light shining through it makes it seem as if there are five fabrics, but there are not.

I have omitted my own work on purpose. You can see a few more pictures in my facebook album.

I should do this as a separate post, but I am adding a couple of pictures from the paintstik class samples I made just because I don't want to forget. It was a fun class and I hope the ladies were inspired to keep playing when they got home!

This piece is called Paintstik Patches. It is a pattern available at the shop, and from Cedar Canyon. The quilting in the border is done with a shimmery rayon thread. Thanks to my friend Debbie for suggesting the design!

I used one of the pieces I made in the class I took last month for the background here. I think I'll assemble them this way, so the original fabric is still sort of together. I like the rubbing plates much better than stenciling!

I am grateful for:
Nice crisp days in between the heat, which allowed me to sleep under my quilts last night!
A few unscheduled days.
Sweet surprises from a dear friend.
The joy of children when their daddy came up the walkway at the airport. ( I didn't know them , just got to see it)
The exercises that help my sciatica.